Westward Ho – Act Three, Scene One

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Enter TENTERHOOK and MISTRESS TENTERHOOK.

TENTERHOOK
What book is that, sweetheart?

MISTRESS TENTERHOOK
Why, the book of bonds that are due to you.

TENTERHOOK
Come, what do you with it? Why do you trouble yourself to take care about my business?

MISTRESS TENTERHOOK
Why, sir, doth not that which concerns you concern me? You told me Monopoly had discharged his bond; I find by the book of accounts here, that it is not cancell’d. Ere I would suffer such a cheating companion to laugh at me, I’d see him hanged, I. Good sweetheart, as ever you loved me, as ever my bed was pleasing to you, arrest the knave. We were never beholding to him for a pin, but for eating up our victuals. Good mouse, enter an action against him.

TENTERHOOK
In troth, love, I may do the gentleman much discredit, and besides, it may be other actions may fall very heavy upon him.

MISTRESS TENTERHOOK
Hang him! To see the dishonesty of the knave!

TENTERHOOK
Oh, wife, good words. A courtier; a gentleman.

MISTRESS TENTERHOOK
Why, may not a gentleman be a knave? That were strange in faith; but as I was a-saying, to see the dishonesty of him that would never come since he received the money to visit us, you know. Master Tenterhook, he hath hunt long upon you. Master Tenterhook, as I am virtuous, you shall arrest him.

TENTERHOOK
Why, I know not when he will come to town.

MISTRESS TENTERHOOK
He’s in town. This night he sups at the Lion in Shoreditch. Good husband, enter your action, and make haste to the Lion presently. There’s an honest fellow, Sergeant Ambush, will do it in a trice. He never salutes a man in courtesy, but he catches him as if he would arrest him. Good heart, let Sergeant Ambush lie in wait for him.

TENTERHOOK
Well, at thy entreaty, I will do it. [Call to Servant within.] Give me my cloak there. Buy a link and meet me at the Counter in Wood Street. [To MISTRESS TENTERHOOK.] Buss me, Clare.

MISTRESS TENTERHOOK
Why, now you love me! I’ll go to bed, sweetheart.

TENTERHOOK
Do not sleep till I come, Clare.                                                                                   [Exit.

MISTRESS TENTERHOOK
No, lamb. Baa sheep! If a woman will be free in this intricate labyrinth of a husband, let her marry a man of a melancholy complexion. She shall not be much troubled with him. By my sooth, my husband hath a hand as dry as his brains, and a breath as strong as six common gardens. Well, my husband is gone to arrest Monopoly. I have dealt with a sergeant privately to entreat him, pretending that he is my aunt’s son. By this means shall I see my young gallant that in this has play’d his part. When they owe money in the city once, they deal with their lawyers by attorney, follow the court though the court to them not the grace to allow them their diet. Oh, the wit of a woman when she is put to the pinch!                      [Exit.

Proceed to the Next Scene

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