A monologue from the play by William ShakespeareFALSTAFF: Peace, good pintpot. Peace, good ticklebrain. — Harry, I do not only marvel where thou spendest thy time, but also how thou art accompanied.
For though the camomile, the more it is trodden on, the faster it grows, yet youth, the more it is wasted, the sooner it wears. That thou art my son I have partly thy mother’s word, partly my own opinion, but chiefly a villainous trick of thine eye and a foolish haning of thy nether lip that doth warrant me. If then thou be son to me, here lies the point: why, being son to me, art thou so pointed at? Shall the blessed sun of heaven prove a micher and eat blackberries? A question not to be asked. There is a thing, Harry, which thou hast often heard of, and it is known to many in our land by the name of pitch.
This pitch, as ancient writers do report, doth defile; so doth the company thou keepest. For, Harry, now I do not speak to thee in drink, but in tears; not in pleasure, but in passion; not in words only, but in woes also: and yet there is a virtuous man whom I have often noted in thy company, but I know not his name. A goodly portly man, i’ faith, and a corpulent; of a cheerful look, a pleasing eye, and a most noble carriage; and, as I think, his age some fifty, or, by’r Lady, inclining to threescore; and now I remember me, his name is Falstaff. If that man should be lewdly given he deceiveth me; for, Harry, I see virtue in his looks.
If then the tree may be known by the fruit, as the fruit by the tree, then, peremptorily I speak it, there is virtue in that Falstaff. Him keep with, the rest banish. And tell me now, thou naughty varlet, tell me where hast thou been this month?