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immediately applied afresh for his Garter, and got it. This placed him on a different footing with regard to the English Court, and no doubt it was thought expedient to erase or conceal this personal matter. Moreover, there is an important sentence added to the explicit Quarto statement, as though to contradict it. The Host's speech containing "Germans are honest men is not in the Quarto.

A sketch of the Duke's visit has been given above (4). But one point must be referred to here-the publicity of his business with the English Court. In August 1597 he sent the Queen, as a sop, a present of a handsome chandelier to adorn her bedroom, having on the previous May written complimentary letters to her and to several of her ministers (Rye, Introduction, p. lxxi) on the subject of the coveted order. So that just before this play was produced, people were talking of him afresh, and probably expecting another visit. All the incidents would be recalled at Windsor.

Another consideration must not be lost sight of. The Host's horses are stolen, and here note, by the way, what a transformation that effects in him. If Falstaff is dejected" by his overthrow, the Host is completely overwhelmed. All his hopes have vanished, and he will give over all. He, the influential man of Windsor, is made a fool of and cozened by these wretched foreigners in the eyes of every one, and, what is worse, has suffered serious loss. What has he done to merit such punishment? That is a part of the plot that remains in abeyance. For some very good reason he is to be humiliated. Ford and Falstaff are plain sailing, but there is more in the Host's disgrace than meets the eye.

Caius and Evans are the machinery for this purpose, and also whereby to weave in this telling reference to subjects of local interest. It is a free and easy episode this practical joke. A foreigner was no matter. They were usually represented on the insular stage, at least in comedy, as more or less capable of anything. But the Welshman? It is a sad fact that that old Taffy slander was in full swing at this time, and the suggestion would have been popular and readily accepted. Not seriously, but a jocular sort of national characteristic. Andrew Borde says (Boke of Knowledge, 1542): "Many of them [Welshmen] be lightfingered and love a purse." Middleton alludes to it in Black Book (Bullen's Middleton, viii. 37), 1604: "Your Welsh hue and cry . . . the only net to catch thieves." And Beaumont and Fletcher, Thiery and Theodoret, v. (ante 1616): “Did you doubt we could steal . . . Did not I speak Welsh ?" It was a recognised sarcasm. It is comforting to remember that the Host was not out of pocket. Fenton makes that good. But there is no suggestion that the real plotters make restitution. In any case the Host lost what was probably dearer to him than horses or money-his reputation for business acuteness. Caius and Evans may arrange with Fenton, but horses in the hands of Pistol and Nym would be in a parlous state.

This disposes of the minor plot of Merry Wives, but I have still to say a little more about mine Host. Halliwell printed a document in his Folio Shakespeare, showing that in 1561 the Host of the Garter was Richard Gallis. He was three times Mayor of Windsor, and in 1562 he was returned as M.P. for the town. He is described on his monument in the parish church as "learned." Halliwell

assumes that this is the actual person presented to us, and that his leading position and the high estimation in which he was held account for the familiar terms he is on with his guests. This view of the Host's position and the references to Halliwell are given in Wheatley's edition of Merry Wives. Richard Gallis, the Mayor, died in the sixty-ninth year of his age in 1574 (Tighe and Davis, Annals of Windsor, i. p. 625, note).

I do not think it is likely Shakespeare would have taken such liberties with a respectable citizen, and one apparently in no way worthy of being held up to ridicule. in the manner this mad Host undoubtedly is. If, however, the Richard Gallis referred to in my note at IV. ii. 180 succeeded him, was his son in fact, he would be a very suitable butt. I refer to the man who wrote the "little pamphlet of the acts and hanging of foure witches in 1579," R. Scot's Discoverie of Witchcraft (p. 39, reprint), 1584. He was "a mad man who hath written according to his frantike humour," this "Richard Gallis, a Windsor man" (p. 13). He would be a fair mark, and moreover Shakespeare was undoubtedly indebted to Reginald Scot's work in this play in more places than one. Unfortunately

the "little pamphlet" is lost. Mine Host gives me the impression of being a skit upon one who merited a certain amount of sarcasm and ridicule. The character was probably very popular. In the shortened Quarto, as I have already remarked, his speeches are treated with greater respect than those of any other character. He was copied in that popular play, The Merry Devil of Edmonton, and Dekker's Tucca in Satiromastix, 1602, has traces of him. I should suppose that, next to Falstaff,

he took the public fancy. Nevertheless he is such an unnatural, impossible sort of creation that it seems likely he was built upon some living counterpart or oddity.

(10) No less than six stories of considerable length, mostly, if not all, of Italian origin, have been reprinted in the Shakespeare Library (2nd ed., 1875, Part I. vol. iii.) in connection with this play. They are all concerned, as might be foretold, with love, jealous husbands, and the concealment of lovers.

One of these, "The Fishwife's Tale of Brainford," from Westward for Smelts, 1620, was advanced by Malone, apparently for no other reason than that it was pitched at Windsor. It need be no further referred to, since it is of too late a date.

Another, "The Story of Lucius and Camillus," is reprinted from The Fortunate, the Deceived, and the Unfortunate Lovers, 1632. A lover is concealed "in a heap of linen which was but half dry." The tale has hardly any other similarity with ours, and is also of too late a date to be of any interest. Another version of this story, under the name of "The Story of Bucciuolo and Pietro Paolo," from Il Pecorone di Ser Giovanni Fiorentino, 1640, is also given.

"The Story of Nerisio of Portugal," from Straparola's Le tredici piacevoli notti, 1569 (i. 129), has similarities. The lover is concealed amongst clothes, looked for by the husband, and afterwards tells his adventures to a friend, who is, unknown to him, the husband himself.

There is also another tale from Te tredici of Straparola, "The Story of Filenio," which contains resemblances, chiefly consisting in the plurality of lovers, and the

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ladies communicating to each other the addresses of the same gallant."

The last tale to be mentioned is also mainly from Straparola. It was printed at an early date in "Tarlton's Newes out of Purgatorie, 1590, as "The Tale of the two Lovers of Pisa." It is not worth reprinting in full, and may be found also in Steevens' Shakespeare. The wording is similar in some places to that of Merry Wives.

Lionel tells Mutio, a doctor of laws, how he loves a beautiful young woman wedded to an old man. Mutio is a stranger to Lionel, and is the old husband. "Trie her man, quoth hee, faint heart never woone faire Lady." Margaretta makes an appointment with Lionel and he, "as joyfull a man as might be," tells Mutio " that I hope to make the old pesant her Husband looke broad headded by a paire of brow antlers." "The olde doctor askte when should be the time: mary quoth Lionello tomorrow at foure of the clocke in the afternoone, we'll dub the olde Squire knight of the forked order." The meeting takes place, "but scarse had they kist ere the Maide cried out to her Mistresse that her Maister was at the doore. . . . Margarett for a shifte chopt Lyonello into a great driefatte full of Feathers. Mutio called for the keyes of his Chambers and looked in everye place . . . he coulde not finde him.” Lyonello tells all this to Mutio, and, " upon Thursday next the old Churle suppeth with a patient of his a mile out of Pisa.... I feare not but to quitte him for all." This meeting also takes place, and Mutio again arrives. The lover is concealed "between two seelings of a plauncher." Mutio "lockt in all the doores, and began to search every chamber, every hole, every chest, every tub, the very well:

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