Christopher Sly is a drunken beggar who passes out on the floor after being chased out of an alehouse by its mistress. A lord and his huntsmen on the way back from a hunt find him. The Lord decides to play an elaborate trick on the man by taking him to the Lord's house, and when he wakes up, making him think that he is a lord. They are supposed to tell him that he has lost his mind, and just got it back. A group of traveling players arrives, and the Lord wants them to stage a play for Sly. He also wants his young page to dress up as a woman and pretend to be the man's wife.