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Quote #10

A witch, a quean, an old cozening quean! Have I not forbid her my house? She comes of errands, does she? We are simple men; we do not know what's brought to pass under the profession of fortune-telling. She works by charms, by spells, by the figure, and such daubery as this is, beyond our element we know nothing. Come down, you witch, you hag, you; come down, I say! (4.2.151-158)

Yikes! By now, it's pretty clear that Ford hates women. When he hears that the "old woman of Brentford" is visiting his house, he flips out, calls her a bunch of insulting names, and then proceeds to beat her. Of course, "the old woman" isn't actually a woman at all. It's Falstaff, who's been tricked into dressing up as an old lady. When this scene is staged right, the effect is supposed to be comedic. (Kind of like watching Mrs. Doubtfire's bosom catch on fire.) But, Ford doesn't know he's not actually beating a woman and neither do his friends, who stand around and watch.

Quote #11

Pardon, good father! good my mother, pardon! (5.5.194)

We have a confession, Shmoopers. When Anne returns from eloping with Fenton, we were sort of hoping she'd speak up for herself and defend her actions to her parents. But this is all she says before Fenton steps in and starts explaining why Anne shouldn't get in trouble for being a disobedient daughter. Sigh. Oh, well. At least Anne didn't let her parents bully her into marrying Slender or Caius, right?

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