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Now is the winter of our discontent
Made glorious summer by this sun of York,
And all the clouds that loured upon our house
In the deep bosom of the ocean buried.

      — King Richard III, Act I Scene 1


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History of Henry IV, Part I

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Act I

1. London. The palace.

2. London. An apartment of the Prince’s.

3. London. The palace.

Act II

1. Rochester. An inn yard.

2. The highway, near Gadshill.

3. Warkworth castle

4. The Boar’s-Head Tavern, Eastcheap.


1. Bangor. The Archdeacon’s house.

2. London. The palace.

3. Eastcheap. The Boar’s-Head Tavern.

Act IV

1. The rebel camp near Shrewsbury.

2. A public road near Coventry.

3. The rebel camp near Shrewsbury.

4. York. The ARCHBISHOP’S palace.

Act V

1. KING HENRY IV’s camp near Shrewsbury.

2. The rebel camp.

3. Plain between the camps.

4. Another part of the field.

5. Another part of the field.


Act I, Scene 1

London. The palace.

      next scene .


  • Henry IV. So shaken as we are, so wan with care,
    Find we a time for frighted peace to pant,
    And breathe short-winded accents of new broils
    To be commenced in strands afar remote. 5
    No more the thirsty entrance of this soil
    Shall daub her lips with her own children's blood;
    Nor more shall trenching war channel her fields,
    Nor bruise her flowerets with the armed hoofs
    Of hostile paces: those opposed eyes, 10
    Which, like the meteors of a troubled heaven,
    All of one nature, of one substance bred,
    Did lately meet in the intestine shock
    And furious close of civil butchery
    Shall now, in mutual well-beseeming ranks, 15
    March all one way and be no more opposed
    Against acquaintance, kindred and allies:
    The edge of war, like an ill-sheathed knife,
    No more shall cut his master. Therefore, friends,
    As far as to the sepulchre of Christ, 20
    Whose soldier now, under whose blessed cross
    We are impressed and engaged to fight,
    Forthwith a power of English shall we levy;
    Whose arms were moulded in their mothers' womb
    To chase these pagans in those holy fields 25
    Over whose acres walk'd those blessed feet
    Which fourteen hundred years ago were nail'd
    For our advantage on the bitter cross.
    But this our purpose now is twelve month old,
    And bootless 'tis to tell you we will go: 30
    Therefore we meet not now. Then let me hear
    Of you, my gentle cousin Westmoreland,
    What yesternight our council did decree
    In forwarding this dear expedience.
  • Earl of Westmoreland. My liege, this haste was hot in question, 35
    And many limits of the charge set down
    But yesternight: when all athwart there came
    A post from Wales loaden with heavy news;
    Whose worst was, that the noble Mortimer,
    Leading the men of Herefordshire to fight 40
    Against the irregular and wild Glendower,
    Was by the rude hands of that Welshman taken,
    A thousand of his people butchered;
    Upon whose dead corpse there was such misuse,
    Such beastly shameless transformation, 45
    By those Welshwomen done as may not be
    Without much shame retold or spoken of.
  • Henry IV. It seems then that the tidings of this broil
    Brake off our business for the Holy Land.
  • Earl of Westmoreland. This match'd with other did, my gracious lord; 50
    For more uneven and unwelcome news
    Came from the north and thus it did import:
    On Holy-rood day, the gallant Hotspur there,
    Young Harry Percy and brave Archibald,
    That ever-valiant and approved Scot, 55
    At Holmedon met,
    Where they did spend a sad and bloody hour,
    As by discharge of their artillery,
    And shape of likelihood, the news was told;
    For he that brought them, in the very heat 60
    And pride of their contention did take horse,
    Uncertain of the issue any way.
  • Henry IV. Here is a dear, a true industrious friend,
    Sir Walter Blunt, new lighted from his horse.
    Stain'd with the variation of each soil 65
    Betwixt that Holmedon and this seat of ours;
    And he hath brought us smooth and welcome news.
    The Earl of Douglas is discomfited:
    Ten thousand bold Scots, two and twenty knights,
    Balk'd in their own blood did Sir Walter see 70
    On Holmedon's plains. Of prisoners, Hotspur took
    Mordake the Earl of Fife, and eldest son
    To beaten Douglas; and the Earl of Athol,
    Of Murray, Angus, and Menteith:
    And is not this an honourable spoil? 75
    A gallant prize? ha, cousin, is it not?
  • Henry IV. Yea, there thou makest me sad and makest me sin
    In envy that my Lord Northumberland 80
    Should be the father to so blest a son,
    A son who is the theme of honour's tongue;
    Amongst a grove, the very straightest plant;
    Who is sweet Fortune's minion and her pride:
    Whilst I, by looking on the praise of him, 85
    See riot and dishonour stain the brow
    Of my young Harry. O that it could be proved
    That some night-tripping fairy had exchanged
    In cradle-clothes our children where they lay,
    And call'd mine Percy, his Plantagenet! 90
    Then would I have his Harry, and he mine.
    But let him from my thoughts. What think you, coz,
    Of this young Percy's pride? the prisoners,
    Which he in this adventure hath surprised,
    To his own use he keeps; and sends me word, 95
    I shall have none but Mordake Earl of Fife.
  • Earl of Westmoreland. This is his uncle's teaching; this is Worcester,
    Malevolent to you in all aspects;
    Which makes him prune himself, and bristle up
    The crest of youth against your dignity. 100
  • Henry IV. But I have sent for him to answer this;
    And for this cause awhile we must neglect
    Our holy purpose to Jerusalem.
    Cousin, on Wednesday next our council we
    Will hold at Windsor; so inform the lords: 105
    But come yourself with speed to us again;
    For more is to be said and to be done
    Than out of anger can be uttered.


. previous scene      

Act I, Scene 2

London. An apartment of the Prince’s.

      next scene .


  • Falstaff. Now, Hal, what time of day is it, lad?
  • Henry V. Thou art so fat-witted, with drinking of old sack
    and unbuttoning thee after supper and sleeping upon
    benches after noon, that thou hast forgotten to 115
    demand that truly which thou wouldst truly know.
    What a devil hast thou to do with the time of the
    day? Unless hours were cups of sack and minutes
    capons and clocks the tongues of bawds and dials the
    signs of leaping-houses and the blessed sun himself 120
    a fair hot wench in flame-coloured taffeta, I see no
    reason why thou shouldst be so superfluous to demand
    the time of the day.
  • Falstaff. Indeed, you come near me now, Hal; for we that take
    purses go by the moon and the seven stars, and not 125
    by Phoebus, he,'that wandering knight so fair.' And,
    I prithee, sweet wag, when thou art king, as, God
    save thy grace,—majesty I should say, for grace
    thou wilt have none,—
  • Falstaff. No, by my troth, not so much as will serve to
    prologue to an egg and butter.
  • Henry V. Well, how then? come, roundly, roundly.
  • Falstaff. Marry, then, sweet wag, when thou art king, let not
    us that are squires of the night's body be called 135
    thieves of the day's beauty: let us be Diana's
    foresters, gentlemen of the shade, minions of the
    moon; and let men say we be men of good government,
    being governed, as the sea is, by our noble and
    chaste mistress the moon, under whose countenance we steal. 140
  • Henry V. Thou sayest well, and it holds well too; for the
    fortune of us that are the moon's men doth ebb and
    flow like the sea, being governed, as the sea is,
    by the moon. As, for proof, now: a purse of gold
    most resolutely snatched on Monday night and most 145
    dissolutely spent on Tuesday morning; got with
    swearing 'Lay by' and spent with crying 'Bring in;'
    now in as low an ebb as the foot of the ladder
    and by and by in as high a flow as the ridge of the gallows.
  • Falstaff. By the Lord, thou sayest true, lad. And is not my 150
    hostess of the tavern a most sweet wench?
  • Henry V. As the honey of Hybla, my old lad of the castle. And
    is not a buff jerkin a most sweet robe of durance?
  • Falstaff. How now, how now, mad wag! what, in thy quips and
    thy quiddities? what a plague have I to do with a 155
    buff jerkin?
  • Henry V. Why, what a pox have I to do with my hostess of the tavern?
  • Falstaff. Well, thou hast called her to a reckoning many a
    time and oft.
  • Henry V. Did I ever call for thee to pay thy part? 160
  • Falstaff. No; I'll give thee thy due, thou hast paid all there.
  • Henry V. Yea, and elsewhere, so far as my coin would stretch;
    and where it would not, I have used my credit.
  • Falstaff. Yea, and so used it that were it not here apparent
    that thou art heir apparent—But, I prithee, sweet 165
    wag, shall there be gallows standing in England when
    thou art king? and resolution thus fobbed as it is
    with the rusty curb of old father antic the law? Do
    not thou, when thou art king, hang a thief.
  • Falstaff. Shall I? O rare! By the Lord, I'll be a brave judge.
  • Henry V. Thou judgest false already: I mean, thou shalt have
    the hanging of the thieves and so become a rare hangman.
  • Falstaff. Well, Hal, well; and in some sort it jumps with my
    humour as well as waiting in the court, I can tell 175
  • Falstaff. Yea, for obtaining of suits, whereof the hangman
    hath no lean wardrobe. 'Sblood, I am as melancholy
    as a gib cat or a lugged bear. 180
  • Henry V. Or an old lion, or a lover's lute.
  • Falstaff. Yea, or the drone of a Lincolnshire bagpipe.
  • Henry V. What sayest thou to a hare, or the melancholy of
  • Falstaff. Thou hast the most unsavoury similes and art indeed 185
    the most comparative, rascalliest, sweet young
    prince. But, Hal, I prithee, trouble me no more
    with vanity. I would to God thou and I knew where a
    commodity of good names were to be bought. An old
    lord of the council rated me the other day in the 190
    street about you, sir, but I marked him not; and yet
    he talked very wisely, but I regarded him not; and
    yet he talked wisely, and in the street too.
  • Henry V. Thou didst well; for wisdom cries out in the
    streets, and no man regards it. 195
  • Falstaff. O, thou hast damnable iteration and art indeed able
    to corrupt a saint. Thou hast done much harm upon
    me, Hal; God forgive thee for it! Before I knew
    thee, Hal, I knew nothing; and now am I, if a man
    should speak truly, little better than one of the 200
    wicked. I must give over this life, and I will give
    it over: by the Lord, and I do not, I am a villain:
    I'll be damned for never a king's son in
  • Henry V. Where shall we take a purse tomorrow, Jack? 205
  • Falstaff. 'Zounds, where thou wilt, lad; I'll make one; an I
    do not, call me villain and baffle me.
  • Henry V. I see a good amendment of life in thee; from praying
    to purse-taking.
  • Falstaff. Why, Hal, 'tis my vocation, Hal; 'tis no sin for a 210
    man to labour in his vocation.
    [Enter POINS]
    Poins! Now shall we know if Gadshill have set a
    match. O, if men were to be saved by merit, what
    hole in hell were hot enough for him? This is the 215
    most omnipotent villain that ever cried 'Stand' to
    a true man.
  • Edward Poins. Good morrow, sweet Hal. What says Monsieur Remorse?
    what says Sir John Sack and Sugar? Jack! how 220
    agrees the devil and thee about thy soul, that thou
    soldest him on Good-Friday last for a cup of Madeira
    and a cold capon's leg?
  • Henry V. Sir John stands to his word, the devil shall have
    his bargain; for he was never yet a breaker of 225
    proverbs: he will give the devil his due.
  • Edward Poins. Then art thou damned for keeping thy word with the devil.
  • Henry V. Else he had been damned for cozening the devil.
  • Edward Poins. But, my lads, my lads, to-morrow morning, by four
    o'clock, early at Gadshill! there are pilgrims going 230
    to Canterbury with rich offerings, and traders
    riding to London with fat purses: I have vizards
    for you all; you have horses for yourselves:
    Gadshill lies to-night in Rochester: I have bespoke
    supper to-morrow night in Eastcheap: we may do it 235
    as secure as sleep. If you will go, I will stuff
    your purses full of crowns; if you will not, tarry
    at home and be hanged.
  • Falstaff. Hear ye, Yedward; if I tarry at home and go not,
    I'll hang you for going. 240
  • Henry V. Who, I rob? I a thief? not I, by my faith.
  • Falstaff. There's neither honesty, manhood, nor good
    fellowship in thee, nor thou camest not of the blood 245
    royal, if thou darest not stand for ten shillings.
  • Henry V. Well then, once in my days I'll be a madcap.
  • Henry V. Well, come what will, I'll tarry at home.
  • Falstaff. By the Lord, I'll be a traitor then, when thou art king. 250
  • Edward Poins. Sir John, I prithee, leave the prince and me alone:
    I will lay him down such reasons for this adventure
    that he shall go.
  • Falstaff. Well, God give thee the spirit of persuasion and him 255
    the ears of profiting, that what thou speakest may
    move and what he hears may be believed, that the
    true prince may, for recreation sake, prove a false
    thief; for the poor abuses of the time want
    countenance. Farewell: you shall find me in Eastcheap. 260
  • Henry V. Farewell, thou latter spring! farewell, All-hallown summer!

[Exit Falstaff]

  • Edward Poins. Now, my good sweet honey lord, ride with us
    to-morrow: I have a jest to execute that I cannot
    manage alone. Falstaff, Bardolph, Peto and Gadshill 265
    shall rob those men that we have already waylaid:
    yourself and I will not be there; and when they
    have the booty, if you and I do not rob them, cut
    this head off from my shoulders.
  • Henry V. How shall we part with them in setting forth? 270
  • Edward Poins. Why, we will set forth before or after them, and
    appoint them a place of meeting, wherein it is at
    our pleasure to fail, and then will they adventure
    upon the exploit themselves; which they shall have
    no sooner achieved, but we'll set upon them. 275
  • Henry V. Yea, but 'tis like that they will know us by our
    horses, by our habits and by every other
    appointment, to be ourselves.
  • Edward Poins. Tut! our horses they shall not see: I'll tie them
    in the wood; our vizards we will change after we 280
    leave them: and, sirrah, I have cases of buckram
    for the nonce, to immask our noted outward garments.
  • Henry V. Yea, but I doubt they will be too hard for us.
  • Edward Poins. Well, for two of them, I know them to be as
    true-bred cowards as ever turned back; and for the 285
    third, if he fight longer than he sees reason, I'll
    forswear arms. The virtue of this jest will be, the
    incomprehensible lies that this same fat rogue will
    tell us when we meet at supper: how thirty, at
    least, he fought with; what wards, what blows, what 290
    extremities he endured; and in the reproof of this
    lies the jest.
  • Henry V. Well, I'll go with thee: provide us all things
    necessary and meet me to-morrow night in Eastcheap;
    there I'll sup. Farewell. 295

[Exit Poins]

  • Henry V. I know you all, and will awhile uphold
    The unyoked humour of your idleness:
    Yet herein will I imitate the sun, 300
    Who doth permit the base contagious clouds
    To smother up his beauty from the world,
    That, when he please again to be himself,
    Being wanted, he may be more wonder'd at,
    By breaking through the foul and ugly mists 305
    Of vapours that did seem to strangle him.
    If all the year were playing holidays,
    To sport would be as tedious as to work;
    But when they seldom come, they wish'd for come,
    And nothing pleaseth but rare accidents. 310
    So, when this loose behavior I throw off
    And pay the debt I never promised,
    By how much better than my word I am,
    By so much shall I falsify men's hopes;
    And like bright metal on a sullen ground, 315
    My reformation, glittering o'er my fault,
    Shall show more goodly and attract more eyes
    Than that which hath no foil to set it off.
    I'll so offend, to make offence a skill;
    Redeeming time when men think least I will. 320


. previous scene      

Act I, Scene 3

London. The palace.

      next scene .


  • Henry IV. My blood hath been too cold and temperate,
    Unapt to stir at these indignities,
    And you have found me; for accordingly 325
    You tread upon my patience: but be sure
    I will from henceforth rather be myself,
    Mighty and to be fear'd, than my condition;
    Which hath been smooth as oil, soft as young down,
    And therefore lost that title of respect 330
    Which the proud soul ne'er pays but to the proud.
  • Earl of Worcester. Our house, my sovereign liege, little deserves
    The scourge of greatness to be used on it;
    And that same greatness too which our own hands
    Have holp to make so portly. 335
  • Henry IV. Worcester, get thee gone; for I do see
    Danger and disobedience in thine eye:
    O, sir, your presence is too bold and peremptory,
    And majesty might never yet endure 340
    The moody frontier of a servant brow.
    You have good leave to leave us: when we need
    Your use and counsel, we shall send for you.
    [Exit Worcester]
    You were about to speak. 345
    [To North]
  • Earl of Northumberland. Yea, my good lord.
    Those prisoners in your highness' name demanded,
    Which Harry Percy here at Holmedon took,
    Were, as he says, not with such strength denied 350
    As is deliver'd to your majesty:
    Either envy, therefore, or misprison
    Is guilty of this fault and not my son.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). My liege, I did deny no prisoners.
    But I remember, when the fight was done, 355
    When I was dry with rage and extreme toil,
    Breathless and faint, leaning upon my sword,
    Came there a certain lord, neat, and trimly dress'd,
    Fresh as a bridegroom; and his chin new reap'd
    Show'd like a stubble-land at harvest-home; 360
    He was perfumed like a milliner;
    And 'twixt his finger and his thumb he held
    A pouncet-box, which ever and anon
    He gave his nose and took't away again;
    Who therewith angry, when it next came there, 365
    Took it in snuff; and still he smiled and talk'd,
    And as the soldiers bore dead bodies by,
    He call'd them untaught knaves, unmannerly,
    To bring a slovenly unhandsome corse
    Betwixt the wind and his nobility. 370
    With many holiday and lady terms
    He question'd me; amongst the rest, demanded
    My prisoners in your majesty's behalf.
    I then, all smarting with my wounds being cold,
    To be so pester'd with a popinjay, 375
    Out of my grief and my impatience,
    Answer'd neglectingly I know not what,
    He should or he should not; for he made me mad
    To see him shine so brisk and smell so sweet
    And talk so like a waiting-gentlewoman 380
    Of guns and drums and wounds,—God save the mark!—
    And telling me the sovereign'st thing on earth
    Was parmaceti for an inward bruise;
    And that it was great pity, so it was,
    This villanous salt-petre should be digg'd 385
    Out of the bowels of the harmless earth,
    Which many a good tall fellow had destroy'd
    So cowardly; and but for these vile guns,
    He would himself have been a soldier.
    This bald unjointed chat of his, my lord, 390
    I answer'd indirectly, as I said;
    And I beseech you, let not his report
    Come current for an accusation
    Betwixt my love and your high majesty.
  • Blunt. The circumstance consider'd, good my lord, 395
    Whate'er Lord Harry Percy then had said
    To such a person and in such a place,
    At such a time, with all the rest retold,
    May reasonably die and never rise
    To do him wrong or any way impeach 400
    What then he said, so he unsay it now.
  • Henry IV. Why, yet he doth deny his prisoners,
    But with proviso and exception,
    That we at our own charge shall ransom straight
    His brother-in-law, the foolish Mortimer; 405
    Who, on my soul, hath wilfully betray'd
    The lives of those that he did lead to fight
    Against that great magician, damn'd Glendower,
    Whose daughter, as we hear, the Earl of March
    Hath lately married. Shall our coffers, then, 410
    Be emptied to redeem a traitor home?
    Shall we but treason? and indent with fears,
    When they have lost and forfeited themselves?
    No, on the barren mountains let him starve;
    For I shall never hold that man my friend 415
    Whose tongue shall ask me for one penny cost
    To ransom home revolted Mortimer.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Revolted Mortimer!
    He never did fall off, my sovereign liege,
    But by the chance of war; to prove that true 420
    Needs no more but one tongue for all those wounds,
    Those mouthed wounds, which valiantly he took
    When on the gentle Severn's sedgy bank,
    In single opposition, hand to hand,
    He did confound the best part of an hour 425
    In changing hardiment with great Glendower:
    Three times they breathed and three times did
    they drink,
    Upon agreement, of swift Severn's flood;
    Who then, affrighted with their bloody looks, 430
    Ran fearfully among the trembling reeds,
    And hid his crisp head in the hollow bank,
    Bloodstained with these valiant combatants.
    Never did base and rotten policy
    Colour her working with such deadly wounds; 435
    Nor could the noble Mortimer
    Receive so many, and all willingly:
    Then let not him be slander'd with revolt.
  • Henry IV. Thou dost belie him, Percy, thou dost belie him;
    He never did encounter with Glendower: 440
    I tell thee,
    He durst as well have met the devil alone
    As Owen Glendower for an enemy.
    Art thou not ashamed? But, sirrah, henceforth
    Let me not hear you speak of Mortimer: 445
    Send me your prisoners with the speediest means,
    Or you shall hear in such a kind from me
    As will displease you. My Lord Northumberland,
    We licence your departure with your son.
    Send us your prisoners, or you will hear of it. 450

[Exeunt King Henry, Blunt, and train]

  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). An if the devil come and roar for them,
    I will not send them: I will after straight
    And tell him so; for I will ease my heart,
    Albeit I make a hazard of my head. 455

[Re-enter WORCESTER]

  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Speak of Mortimer!
    'Zounds, I will speak of him; and let my soul 460
    Want mercy, if I do not join with him:
    Yea, on his part I'll empty all these veins,
    And shed my dear blood drop by drop in the dust,
    But I will lift the down-trod Mortimer
    As high in the air as this unthankful king, 465
    As this ingrate and canker'd Bolingbroke.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). He will, forsooth, have all my prisoners;
    And when I urged the ransom once again 470
    Of my wife's brother, then his cheek look'd pale,
    And on my face he turn'd an eye of death,
    Trembling even at the name of Mortimer.
  • Earl of Worcester. I cannot blame him: was not he proclaim'd
    By Richard that dead is the next of blood? 475
  • Earl of Northumberland. He was; I heard the proclamation:
    And then it was when the unhappy king,
    —Whose wrongs in us God pardon!—did set forth
    Upon his Irish expedition;
    From whence he intercepted did return 480
    To be deposed and shortly murdered.
  • Earl of Worcester. And for whose death we in the world's wide mouth
    Live scandalized and foully spoken of.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). But soft, I pray you; did King Richard then
    Proclaim my brother Edmund Mortimer 485
    Heir to the crown?
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Nay, then I cannot blame his cousin king,
    That wished him on the barren mountains starve.
    But shall it be that you, that set the crown 490
    Upon the head of this forgetful man
    And for his sake wear the detested blot
    Of murderous subornation, shall it be,
    That you a world of curses undergo,
    Being the agents, or base second means, 495
    The cords, the ladder, or the hangman rather?
    O, pardon me that I descend so low,
    To show the line and the predicament
    Wherein you range under this subtle king;
    Shall it for shame be spoken in these days, 500
    Or fill up chronicles in time to come,
    That men of your nobility and power
    Did gage them both in an unjust behalf,
    As both of you—God pardon it!—have done,
    To put down Richard, that sweet lovely rose, 505
    An plant this thorn, this canker, Bolingbroke?
    And shall it in more shame be further spoken,
    That you are fool'd, discarded and shook off
    By him for whom these shames ye underwent?
    No; yet time serves wherein you may redeem 510
    Your banish'd honours and restore yourselves
    Into the good thoughts of the world again,
    Revenge the jeering and disdain'd contempt
    Of this proud king, who studies day and night
    To answer all the debt he owes to you 515
    Even with the bloody payment of your deaths:
    Therefore, I say—
  • Earl of Worcester. Peace, cousin, say no more:
    And now I will unclasp a secret book,
    And to your quick-conceiving discontents 520
    I'll read you matter deep and dangerous,
    As full of peril and adventurous spirit
    As to o'er-walk a current roaring loud
    On the unsteadfast footing of a spear.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). If he fall in, good night! or sink or swim: 525
    Send danger from the east unto the west,
    So honour cross it from the north to south,
    And let them grapple: O, the blood more stirs
    To rouse a lion than to start a hare!
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). By heaven, methinks it were an easy leap,
    To pluck bright honour from the pale-faced moon,
    Or dive into the bottom of the deep,
    Where fathom-line could never touch the ground, 535
    And pluck up drowned honour by the locks;
    So he that doth redeem her thence might wear
    Without corrival, all her dignities:
    But out upon this half-faced fellowship!
  • Earl of Worcester. He apprehends a world of figures here, 540
    But not the form of what he should attend.
    Good cousin, give me audience for a while.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). I'll keep them all;
    By God, he shall not have a Scot of them;
    No, if a Scot would save his soul, he shall not:
    I'll keep them, by this hand.
  • Earl of Worcester. You start away 550
    And lend no ear unto my purposes.
    Those prisoners you shall keep.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Nay, I will; that's flat:
    He said he would not ransom Mortimer;
    Forbad my tongue to speak of Mortimer; 555
    But I will find him when he lies asleep,
    And in his ear I'll holla 'Mortimer!'
    I'll have a starling shall be taught to speak
    Nothing but 'Mortimer,' and give it him 560
    To keep his anger still in motion.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). All studies here I solemnly defy,
    Save how to gall and pinch this Bolingbroke:
    And that same sword-and-buckler Prince of Wales, 565
    But that I think his father loves him not
    And would be glad he met with some mischance,
    I would have him poison'd with a pot of ale.
  • Earl of Worcester. Farewell, kinsman: I'll talk to you
    When you are better temper'd to attend. 570
  • Earl of Northumberland. Why, what a wasp-stung and impatient fool
    Art thou to break into this woman's mood,
    Tying thine ear to no tongue but thine own!
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Why, look you, I am whipp'd and scourged with rods,
    Nettled and stung with pismires, when I hear 575
    Of this vile politician, Bolingbroke.
    In Richard's time,—what do you call the place?—
    A plague upon it, it is in Gloucestershire;
    'Twas where the madcap duke his uncle kept,
    His uncle York; where I first bow'd my knee 580
    Unto this king of smiles, this Bolingbroke,—
    When you and he came back from Ravenspurgh.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). You say true: 585
    Why, what a candy deal of courtesy
    This fawning greyhound then did proffer me!
    Look,'when his infant fortune came to age,'
    And 'gentle Harry Percy,' and 'kind cousin;'
    O, the devil take such cozeners! God forgive me! 590
    Good uncle, tell your tale; I have done.
  • Earl of Worcester. Then once more to your Scottish prisoners. 595
    Deliver them up without their ransom straight,
    And make the Douglas' son your only mean
    For powers in Scotland; which, for divers reasons
    Which I shall send you written, be assured,
    Will easily be granted. You, my lord, 600
    [To Northumberland]
    Your son in Scotland being thus employ'd,
    Shall secretly into the bosom creep
    Of that same noble prelate, well beloved,
    The archbishop. 605
  • Earl of Worcester. True; who bears hard
    His brother's death at Bristol, the Lord Scroop.
    I speak not this in estimation,
    As what I think might be, but what I know 610
    Is ruminated, plotted and set down,
    And only stays but to behold the face
    Of that occasion that shall bring it on.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Why, it cannot choose but be a noble plot;
    And then the power of Scotland and of York,
    To join with Mortimer, ha?
  • Earl of Worcester. And 'tis no little reason bids us speed,
    To save our heads by raising of a head;
    For, bear ourselves as even as we can,
    The king will always think him in our debt,
    And think we think ourselves unsatisfied, 625
    Till he hath found a time to pay us home:
    And see already how he doth begin
    To make us strangers to his looks of love.
  • Earl of Worcester. Cousin, farewell: no further go in this 630
    Than I by letters shall direct your course.
    When time is ripe, which will be suddenly,
    I'll steal to Glendower and Lord Mortimer;
    Where you and Douglas and our powers at once,
    As I will fashion it, shall happily meet, 635
    To bear our fortunes in our own strong arms,
    Which now we hold at much uncertainty.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Uncle, Adieu: O, let the hours be short
    Till fields and blows and groans applaud our sport! 640


. previous scene      

Act II, Scene 1

Rochester. An inn yard.

      next scene .

[Enter a Carrier with a lantern in his hand]

  • First Carrier. Heigh-ho! an it be not four by the day, I'll be
    hanged: Charles' wain is over the new chimney, and
    yet our horse not packed. What, ostler! 645
  • First Carrier. I prithee, Tom, beat Cut's saddle, put a few flocks
    in the point; poor jade, is wrung in the withers out
    of all cess.

[Enter another Carrier]

  • Second Carrier. Peas and beans are as dank here as a dog, and that
    is the next way to give poor jades the bots: this
    house is turned upside down since Robin Ostler died.
  • First Carrier. Poor fellow, never joyed since the price of oats
    rose; it was the death of him. 655
  • Second Carrier. I think this be the most villanous house in all
    London road for fleas: I am stung like a tench.
  • First Carrier. Like a tench! by the mass, there is ne'er a king
    christen could be better bit than I have been since
    the first cock. 660
  • Second Carrier. Why, they will allow us ne'er a jordan, and then we
    leak in your chimney; and your chamber-lie breeds
    fleas like a loach.
  • Second Carrier. I have a gammon of bacon and two razors of ginger, 665
    to be delivered as far as Charing-cross.
  • First Carrier. God's body! the turkeys in my pannier are quite
    starved. What, ostler! A plague on thee! hast thou
    never an eye in thy head? canst not hear? An
    'twere not as good deed as drink, to break the pate 670
    on thee, I am a very villain. Come, and be hanged!
    hast thou no faith in thee?

[Enter Gadshill]

  • Gadshill. Good morrow, carriers. What's o'clock?
  • Gadshill. I pray thee lend me thy lantern, to see my gelding
    in the stable.
  • First Carrier. Nay, by God, soft; I know a trick worth two of that, i' faith.
  • Second Carrier. Ay, when? can'st tell? Lend me thy lantern, quoth 680
    he? marry, I'll see thee hanged first.
  • Gadshill. Sirrah carrier, what time do you mean to come to London?
  • Second Carrier. Time enough to go to bed with a candle, I warrant
    thee. Come, neighbour Mugs, we'll call up the
    gentleman: they will along with company, for they 685
    have great charge.

[Exeunt carriers]

  • Gadshill. That's even as fair as—at hand, quoth the 690
    chamberlain; for thou variest no more from picking
    of purses than giving direction doth from labouring;
    thou layest the plot how.

[Enter Chamberlain]

  • Chamberlain. Good morrow, Master Gadshill. It holds current that 695
    I told you yesternight: there's a franklin in the
    wild of Kent hath brought three hundred marks with
    him in gold: I heard him tell it to one of his
    company last night at supper; a kind of auditor; one
    that hath abundance of charge too, God knows what. 700
    They are up already, and call for eggs and butter;
    they will away presently.
  • Gadshill. Sirrah, if they meet not with Saint Nicholas'
    clerks, I'll give thee this neck.
  • Chamberlain. No, I'll none of it: I pray thee keep that for the 705
    hangman; for I know thou worshippest St. Nicholas
    as truly as a man of falsehood may.
  • Gadshill. What talkest thou to me of the hangman? if I hang,
    I'll make a fat pair of gallows; for if I hang, old
    Sir John hangs with me, and thou knowest he is no 710
    starveling. Tut! there are other Trojans that thou
    dreamest not of, the which for sport sake are
    content to do the profession some grace; that would,
    if matters should be looked into, for their own
    credit sake, make all whole. I am joined with no 715
    foot-land rakers, no long-staff sixpenny strikers,
    none of these mad mustachio purple-hued malt-worms;
    but with nobility and tranquillity, burgomasters and
    great oneyers, such as can hold in, such as will
    strike sooner than speak, and speak sooner than 720
    drink, and drink sooner than pray: and yet, zounds,
    I lie; for they pray continually to their saint, the
    commonwealth; or rather, not pray to her, but prey
    on her, for they ride up and down on her and make
    her their boots. 725
  • Chamberlain. What, the commonwealth their boots? will she hold
    out water in foul way?
  • Gadshill. She will, she will; justice hath liquored her. We
    steal as in a castle, cocksure; we have the receipt
    of fern-seed, we walk invisible. 730
  • Chamberlain. Nay, by my faith, I think you are more beholding to
    the night than to fern-seed for your walking invisible.
  • Gadshill. Give me thy hand: thou shalt have a share in our
    purchase, as I am a true man.
  • Chamberlain. Nay, rather let me have it, as you are a false thief. 735
  • Gadshill. Go to; 'homo' is a common name to all men. Bid the
    ostler bring my gelding out of the stable. Farewell,
    you muddy knave.


. previous scene      

Act II, Scene 2

The highway, near Gadshill.

      next scene .


  • Edward Poins. Come, shelter, shelter: I have removed Falstaff's
    horse, and he frets like a gummed velvet.


  • Falstaff. Poins! Poins, and be hanged! Poins! 745
  • Henry V. Peace, ye fat-kidneyed rascal! what a brawling dost
    thou keep!
  • Henry V. He is walked up to the top of the hill: I'll go seek him.
  • Falstaff. I am accursed to rob in that thief's company: the 750
    rascal hath removed my horse, and tied him I know
    not where. If I travel but four foot by the squier
    further afoot, I shall break my wind. Well, I doubt
    not but to die a fair death for all this, if I
    'scape hanging for killing that rogue. I have 755
    forsworn his company hourly any time this two and
    twenty years, and yet I am bewitched with the
    rogue's company. If the rascal hath not given me
    medicines to make me love him, I'll be hanged; it
    could not be else: I have drunk medicines. Poins! 760
    Hal! a plague upon you both! Bardolph! Peto!
    I'll starve ere I'll rob a foot further. An 'twere
    not as good a deed as drink, to turn true man and to
    leave these rogues, I am the veriest varlet that
    ever chewed with a tooth. Eight yards of uneven 765
    ground is threescore and ten miles afoot with me;
    and the stony-hearted villains know it well enough:
    a plague upon it when thieves cannot be true one to another!
    [They whistle]
    Whew! A plague upon you all! Give me my horse, you 770
    rogues; give me my horse, and be hanged!
  • Henry V. Peace, ye fat-guts! lie down; lay thine ear close
    to the ground and list if thou canst hear the tread
    of travellers.
  • Falstaff. Have you any levers to lift me up again, being down? 775
    'Sblood, I'll not bear mine own flesh so far afoot
    again for all the coin in thy father's exchequer.
    What a plague mean ye to colt me thus?
  • Henry V. Thou liest; thou art not colted, thou art uncolted.
  • Falstaff. I prithee, good Prince Hal, help me to my horse, 780
    good king's son.
  • Henry V. Out, ye rogue! shall I be your ostler?
  • Falstaff. Go, hang thyself in thine own heir-apparent
    garters! If I be ta'en, I'll peach for this. An I
    have not ballads made on you all and sung to filthy 785
    tunes, let a cup of sack be my poison: when a jest
    is so forward, and afoot too! I hate it.

[Enter Gadshill, BARDOLPH and PETO]

  • Edward Poins. O, 'tis our setter: I know his voice. Bardolph,
    what news?
    money of the king's coming down the hill; 'tis going
    to the king's exchequer.
  • Falstaff. You lie, ye rogue; 'tis going to the king's tavern.
  • Gadshill. There's enough to make us all.
  • Henry V. Sirs, you four shall front them in the narrow lane;
    Ned Poins and I will walk lower: if they 'scape 800
    from your encounter, then they light on us.
  • Peto. How many be there of them?
  • Falstaff. 'Zounds, will they not rob us?
  • Henry V. What, a coward, Sir John Paunch? 805
  • Falstaff. Indeed, I am not John of Gaunt, your grandfather;
    but yet no coward, Hal.
  • Henry V. Well, we leave that to the proof.
  • Edward Poins. Sirrah Jack, thy horse stands behind the hedge:
    when thou needest him, there thou shalt find him. 810
    Farewell, and stand fast.
  • Falstaff. Now cannot I strike him, if I should be hanged.
  • Henry V. Ned, where are our disguises?


  • Falstaff. Now, my masters, happy man be his dole, say I:
    every man to his business.

[Enter the Travellers]

  • First Traveller. Come, neighbour: the boy shall lead our horses down
    the hill; we'll walk afoot awhile, and ease our legs. 820
  • Falstaff. Strike; down with them; cut the villains' throats:
    ah! whoreson caterpillars! bacon-fed knaves! they
    hate us youth: down with them: fleece them. 825
  • Travellers. O, we are undone, both we and ours for ever!
  • Falstaff. Hang ye, gorbellied knaves, are ye undone? No, ye
    fat chuffs: I would your store were here! On,
    bacons, on! What, ye knaves! young men must live.
    You are Grand-jurors, are ye? we'll jure ye, 'faith. 830

[Here they rob them and bind them. Exeunt]


  • Henry V. The thieves have bound the true men. Now could thou
    and I rob the thieves and go merrily to London, it
    would be argument for a week, laughter for a month 835
    and a good jest for ever.

[Enter the Thieves again]

  • Falstaff. Come, my masters, let us share, and then to horse
    before day. An the Prince and Poins be not two 840
    arrant cowards, there's no equity stirring: there's
    no more valour in that Poins than in a wild-duck.
  • Edward Poins. Villains!
    [As they are sharing, the Prince and Poins set upon 845
    them; they all run away; and Falstaff, after a blow
    or two, runs away too, leaving the booty behind them]
  • Henry V. Got with much ease. Now merrily to horse:
    The thieves are all scatter'd and possess'd with fear
    So strongly that they dare not meet each other; 850
    Each takes his fellow for an officer.
    Away, good Ned. Falstaff sweats to death,
    And lards the lean earth as he walks along:
    Were 't not for laughing, I should pity him.


. previous scene      

Act II, Scene 3

Warkworth castle

      next scene .

[Enter HOTSPUR, solus, reading a letter]

  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). 'But for mine own part, my lord, I could be well
    contented to be there, in respect of the love I bear
    your house.' He could be contented: why is he not, 860
    then? In respect of the love he bears our house:
    he shows in this, he loves his own barn better than
    he loves our house. Let me see some more. 'The
    purpose you undertake is dangerous;'—why, that's
    certain: 'tis dangerous to take a cold, to sleep, to 865
    drink; but I tell you, my lord fool, out of this
    nettle, danger, we pluck this flower, safety. 'The
    purpose you undertake is dangerous; the friends you
    have named uncertain; the time itself unsorted; and
    your whole plot too light for the counterpoise of so 870
    great an opposition.' Say you so, say you so? I say
    unto you again, you are a shallow cowardly hind, and
    you lie. What a lack-brain is this! By the Lord,
    our plot is a good plot as ever was laid; our
    friends true and constant: a good plot, good 875
    friends, and full of expectation; an excellent plot,
    very good friends. What a frosty-spirited rogue is
    this! Why, my lord of York commends the plot and the
    general course of action. 'Zounds, an I were now by
    this rascal, I could brain him with his lady's fan. 880
    Is there not my father, my uncle and myself? lord
    Edmund Mortimer, My lord of York and Owen Glendower?
    is there not besides the Douglas? have I not all
    their letters to meet me in arms by the ninth of the
    next month? and are they not some of them set 885
    forward already? What a pagan rascal is this! an
    infidel! Ha! you shall see now in very sincerity
    of fear and cold heart, will he to the king and lay
    open all our proceedings. O, I could divide myself
    and go to buffets, for moving such a dish of 890
    skim milk with so honourable an action! Hang him!
    let him tell the king: we are prepared. I will set
    forward to-night.
    [Enter LADY PERCY]
    How now, Kate! I must leave you within these two hours. 895
  • Lady Percy. O, my good lord, why are you thus alone?
    For what offence have I this fortnight been
    A banish'd woman from my Harry's bed?
    Tell me, sweet lord, what is't that takes from thee
    Thy stomach, pleasure and thy golden sleep? 900
    Why dost thou bend thine eyes upon the earth,
    And start so often when thou sit'st alone?
    Why hast thou lost the fresh blood in thy cheeks;
    And given my treasures and my rights of thee
    To thick-eyed musing and cursed melancholy? 905
    In thy faint slumbers I by thee have watch'd,
    And heard thee murmur tales of iron wars;
    Speak terms of manage to thy bounding steed;
    Cry 'Courage! to the field!' And thou hast talk'd
    Of sallies and retires, of trenches, tents, 910
    Of palisadoes, frontiers, parapets,
    Of basilisks, of cannon, culverin,
    Of prisoners' ransom and of soldiers slain,
    And all the currents of a heady fight.
    Thy spirit within thee hath been so at war 915
    And thus hath so bestirr'd thee in thy sleep,
    That beads of sweat have stood upon thy brow
    Like bubbles in a late-disturbed stream;
    And in thy face strange motions have appear'd,
    Such as we see when men restrain their breath 920
    On some great sudden hest. O, what portents are these?
    Some heavy business hath my lord in hand,
    And I must know it, else he loves me not.
  • Servant. He is, my lord, an hour ago.
  • Servant. One horse, my lord, he brought even now.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). That roan shall by my throne.
    Well, I will back him straight: O esperance!
    Bid Butler lead him forth into the park.

[Exit Servant]

  • Lady Percy. Out, you mad-headed ape! 940
    A weasel hath not such a deal of spleen
    As you are toss'd with. In faith,
    I'll know your business, Harry, that I will.
    I fear my brother Mortimer doth stir
    About his title, and hath sent for you 945
    To line his enterprise: but if you go,—
  • Lady Percy. Come, come, you paraquito, answer me
    Directly unto this question that I ask:
    In faith, I'll break thy little finger, Harry, 950
    An if thou wilt not tell me all things true.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Away,
    Away, you trifler! Love! I love thee not,
    I care not for thee, Kate: this is no world
    To play with mammets and to tilt with lips: 955
    We must have bloody noses and crack'd crowns,
    And pass them current too. God's me, my horse!
    What say'st thou, Kate? what would'st thou
    have with me?
  • Lady Percy. Do you not love me? do you not, indeed? 960
    Well, do not then; for since you love me not,
    I will not love myself. Do you not love me?
    Nay, tell me if you speak in jest or no.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Come, wilt thou see me ride?
    And when I am on horseback, I will swear 965
    I love thee infinitely. But hark you, Kate;
    I must not have you henceforth question me
    Whither I go, nor reason whereabout:
    Whither I must, I must; and, to conclude,
    This evening must I leave you, gentle Kate. 970
    I know you wise, but yet no farther wise
    Than Harry Percy's wife: constant you are,
    But yet a woman: and for secrecy,
    No lady closer; for I well believe
    Thou wilt not utter what thou dost not know; 975
    And so far will I trust thee, gentle Kate.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Not an inch further. But hark you, Kate:
    Whither I go, thither shall you go too;
    To-day will I set forth, to-morrow you. 980
    Will this content you, Kate?


. previous scene      

Act II, Scene 4

The Boar’s-Head Tavern, Eastcheap.

      next scene .


  • Henry V. Ned, prithee, come out of that fat room, and lend me 985
    thy hand to laugh a little.
  • Henry V. With three or four loggerheads amongst three or four
    score hogsheads. I have sounded the very
    base-string of humility. Sirrah, I am sworn brother 990
    to a leash of drawers; and can call them all by
    their christen names, as Tom, Dick, and Francis.
    They take it already upon their salvation, that
    though I be but the prince of Wales, yet I am king
    of courtesy; and tell me flatly I am no proud Jack, 995
    like Falstaff, but a Corinthian, a lad of mettle, a
    good boy, by the Lord, so they call me, and when I
    am king of England, I shall command all the good
    lads in Eastcheap. They call drinking deep, dyeing
    scarlet; and when you breathe in your watering, they 1000
    cry 'hem!' and bid you play it off. To conclude, I
    am so good a proficient in one quarter of an hour,
    that I can drink with any tinker in his own language
    during my life. I tell thee, Ned, thou hast lost
    much honour, that thou wert not with me in this sweet 1005
    action. But, sweet Ned,—to sweeten which name of
    Ned, I give thee this pennyworth of sugar, clapped
    even now into my hand by an under-skinker, one that
    never spake other English in his life than 'Eight
    shillings and sixpence' and 'You are welcome,' with 1010
    this shrill addition, 'Anon, anon, sir! Score a pint
    of bastard in the Half-Moon,' or so. But, Ned, to
    drive away the time till Falstaff come, I prithee,
    do thou stand in some by-room, while I question my
    puny drawer to what end he gave me the sugar; and do 1015
    thou never leave calling 'Francis,' that his tale
    to me may be nothing but 'Anon.' Step aside, and
    I'll show thee a precedent.

[Exit POINS]


  • Francis. Anon, anon, sir. Look down into the Pomgarnet, Ralph.
  • Henry V. Come hither, Francis. 1025
  • Henry V. How long hast thou to serve, Francis?
  • Francis. Forsooth, five years, and as much as to—
  • Henry V. Five year! by'r lady, a long lease for the clinking
    of pewter. But, Francis, darest thou be so valiant
    as to play the coward with thy indenture and show it
    a fair pair of heels and run from it?
  • Francis. O Lord, sir, I'll be sworn upon all the books in 1035
    England, I could find in my heart.
  • Henry V. How old art thou, Francis?
  • Francis. Let me see—about Michaelmas next I shall be— 1040
  • Francis. Anon, sir. Pray stay a little, my lord.
  • Henry V. Nay, but hark you, Francis: for the sugar thou
    gavest me,'twas a pennyworth, wast't not?
  • Francis. O Lord, I would it had been two! 1045
  • Henry V. I will give thee for it a thousand pound: ask me
    when thou wilt, and thou shalt have it.
  • Henry V. Anon, Francis? No, Francis; but to-morrow, Francis; 1050
    or, Francis, o' Thursday; or indeed, Francis, when
    thou wilt. But, Francis!
  • Henry V. Wilt thou rob this leathern jerkin, crystal-button,
    not-pated, agate-ring, puke-stocking, caddis-garter, 1055
    smooth-tongue, Spanish-pouch,—
  • Francis. O Lord, sir, who do you mean?
  • Henry V. Why, then, your brown bastard is your only drink;
    for look you, Francis, your white canvas doublet
    will sully: in Barbary, sir, it cannot come to so much. 1060
  • Henry V. Away, you rogue! dost thou not hear them call?
    [Here they both call him; the drawer stands amazed,
    not knowing which way to go]

[Enter Vintner]

  • Vintner. What, standest thou still, and hearest such a
    calling? Look to the guests within.
    [Exit Francis]
    My lord, old Sir John, with half-a-dozen more, are 1070
    at the door: shall I let them in?
  • Henry V. Let them alone awhile, and then open the door.
    [Exit Vintner]

[Re-enter POINS]

  • Henry V. Sirrah, Falstaff and the rest of the thieves are at
    the door: shall we be merry?
  • Edward Poins. As merry as crickets, my lad. But hark ye; what
    cunning match have you made with this jest of the 1080
    drawer? come, what's the issue?
  • Henry V. I am now of all humours that have showed themselves
    humours since the old days of goodman Adam to the
    pupil age of this present twelve o'clock at midnight.
    [Re-enter FRANCIS] 1085
    What's o'clock, Francis?


  • Henry V. That ever this fellow should have fewer words than a
    parrot, and yet the son of a woman! His industry is 1090
    upstairs and downstairs; his eloquence the parcel of
    a reckoning. I am not yet of Percy's mind, the
    Hotspur of the north; he that kills me some six or
    seven dozen of Scots at a breakfast, washes his
    hands, and says to his wife 'Fie upon this quiet 1095
    life! I want work.' 'O my sweet Harry,' says she,
    'how many hast thou killed to-day?' 'Give my roan
    horse a drench,' says he; and answers 'Some
    fourteen,' an hour after; 'a trifle, a trifle.' I
    prithee, call in Falstaff: I'll play Percy, and 1100
    that damned brawn shall play Dame Mortimer his
    wife. 'Rivo!' says the drunkard. Call in ribs, call in tallow.

[Enter FALSTAFF, Gadshill, BARDOLPH, and PETO; FRANCIS following with wine]

  • Falstaff. A plague of all cowards, I say, and a vengeance too! 1105
    marry, and amen! Give me a cup of sack, boy. Ere I
    lead this life long, I'll sew nether stocks and mend
    them and foot them too. A plague of all cowards!
    Give me a cup of sack, rogue. Is there no virtue extant?

[He drinks]

  • Henry V. Didst thou never see Titan kiss a dish of butter?
    pitiful-hearted Titan, that melted at the sweet tale
    of the sun's! if thou didst, then behold that compound.
  • Falstaff. You rogue, here's lime in this sack too: there is
    nothing but roguery to be found in villanous man: 1115
    yet a coward is worse than a cup of sack with lime
    in it. A villanous coward! Go thy ways, old Jack;
    die when thou wilt, if manhood, good manhood, be
    not forgot upon the face of the earth, then am I a
    shotten herring. There live not three good men 1120
    unhanged in England; and one of them is fat and
    grows old: God help the while! a bad world, I say.
    I would I were a weaver; I could sing psalms or any
    thing. A plague of all cowards, I say still.
  • Henry V. How now, wool-sack! what mutter you? 1125
  • Falstaff. A king's son! If I do not beat thee out of thy
    kingdom with a dagger of lath, and drive all thy
    subjects afore thee like a flock of wild-geese,
    I'll never wear hair on my face more. You Prince of Wales!
  • Henry V. Why, you whoreson round man, what's the matter? 1130
  • Falstaff. Are not you a coward? answer me to that: and Poins there?
  • Edward Poins. 'Zounds, ye fat paunch, an ye call me coward, by the
    Lord, I'll stab thee.
  • Falstaff. I call thee coward! I'll see thee damned ere I call
    thee coward: but I would give a thousand pound I 1135
    could run as fast as thou canst. You are straight
    enough in the shoulders, you care not who sees your
    back: call you that backing of your friends? A
    plague upon such backing! give me them that will
    face me. Give me a cup of sack: I am a rogue, if I 1140
    drunk to-day.
  • Henry V. O villain! thy lips are scarce wiped since thou
    drunkest last.
  • Falstaff. All's one for that.
    [He drinks] 1145
    A plague of all cowards, still say I.
  • Falstaff. What's the matter! there be four of us here have
    ta'en a thousand pound this day morning.
  • Henry V. Where is it, Jack? where is it? 1150
  • Falstaff. Where is it! taken from us it is: a hundred upon
    poor four of us.
  • Falstaff. I am a rogue, if I were not at half-sword with a
    dozen of them two hours together. I have 'scaped by 1155
    miracle. I am eight times thrust through the
    doublet, four through the hose; my buckler cut
    through and through; my sword hacked like a
    hand-saw—ecce signum! I never dealt better since
    I was a man: all would not do. A plague of all 1160
    cowards! Let them speak: if they speak more or
    less than truth, they are villains and the sons of darkness.
  • Gadshill. We four set upon some dozen—
  • Falstaff. Sixteen at least, my lord. 1165
  • Peto. No, no, they were not bound.
  • Falstaff. You rogue, they were bound, every man of them; or I
    am a Jew else, an Ebrew Jew.
  • Gadshill. As we were sharing, some six or seven fresh men set upon us— 1170
  • Falstaff. And unbound the rest, and then come in the other.
  • Henry V. What, fought you with them all?
  • Falstaff. All! I know not what you call all; but if I fought
    not with fifty of them, I am a bunch of radish: if
    there were not two or three and fifty upon poor old 1175
    Jack, then am I no two-legged creature.
  • Henry V. Pray God you have not murdered some of them.
  • Falstaff. Nay, that's past praying for: I have peppered two
    of them; two I am sure I have paid, two rogues
    in buckram suits. I tell thee what, Hal, if I tell 1180
    thee a lie, spit in my face, call me horse. Thou
    knowest my old ward; here I lay and thus I bore my
    point. Four rogues in buckram let drive at me—
  • Henry V. What, four? thou saidst but two even now.
  • Falstaff. Four, Hal; I told thee four. 1185
  • Falstaff. These four came all a-front, and mainly thrust at
    me. I made me no more ado but took all their seven
    points in my target, thus.
  • Henry V. Seven? why, there were but four even now. 1190
  • Falstaff. Seven, by these hilts, or I am a villain else.
  • Henry V. Prithee, let him alone; we shall have more anon.
  • Henry V. Ay, and mark thee too, Jack.
  • Falstaff. Do so, for it is worth the listening to. These nine
    in buckram that I told thee of—
  • Falstaff. Their points being broken,— 1200
  • Falstaff. Began to give me ground: but I followed me close,
    came in foot and hand; and with a thought seven of
    the eleven I paid.
  • Henry V. O monstrous! eleven buckram men grown out of two! 1205
  • Falstaff. But, as the devil would have it, three misbegotten
    knaves in Kendal green came at my back and let drive
    at me; for it was so dark, Hal, that thou couldst
    not see thy hand.
  • Henry V. These lies are like their father that begets them; 1210
    gross as a mountain, open, palpable. Why, thou
    clay-brained guts, thou knotty-pated fool, thou
    whoreson, obscene, grease tallow-catch,—
  • Falstaff. What, art thou mad? art thou mad? is not the truth
    the truth? 1215
  • Henry V. Why, how couldst thou know these men in Kendal
    green, when it was so dark thou couldst not see thy
    hand? come, tell us your reason: what sayest thou to this?
  • Falstaff. What, upon compulsion? 'Zounds, an I were at the 1220
    strappado, or all the racks in the world, I would
    not tell you on compulsion. Give you a reason on
    compulsion! If reasons were as plentiful as
    blackberries, I would give no man a reason upon
    compulsion, I. 1225
  • Henry V. I'll be no longer guilty of this sin; this sanguine
    coward, this bed-presser, this horseback-breaker,
    this huge hill of flesh,—
  • Falstaff. 'Sblood, you starveling, you elf-skin, you dried
    neat's tongue, you bull's pizzle, you stock-fish! O 1230
    for breath to utter what is like thee! you
    tailor's-yard, you sheath, you bowcase; you vile
  • Henry V. Well, breathe awhile, and then to it again: and
    when thou hast tired thyself in base comparisons, 1235
    hear me speak but this.
  • Henry V. We two saw you four set on four and bound them, and
    were masters of their wealth. Mark now, how a plain
    tale shall put you down. Then did we two set on you 1240
    four; and, with a word, out-faced you from your
    prize, and have it; yea, and can show it you here in
    the house: and, Falstaff, you carried your guts
    away as nimbly, with as quick dexterity, and roared
    for mercy and still run and roared, as ever I heard 1245
    bull-calf. What a slave art thou, to hack thy sword
    as thou hast done, and then say it was in fight!
    What trick, what device, what starting-hole, canst
    thou now find out to hide thee from this open and
    apparent shame? 1250
  • Edward Poins. Come, let's hear, Jack; what trick hast thou now?
  • Falstaff. By the Lord, I knew ye as well as he that made ye.
    Why, hear you, my masters: was it for me to kill the
    heir-apparent? should I turn upon the true prince?
    why, thou knowest I am as valiant as Hercules: but 1255
    beware instinct; the lion will not touch the true
    prince. Instinct is a great matter; I was now a
    coward on instinct. I shall think the better of
    myself and thee during my life; I for a valiant
    lion, and thou for a true prince. But, by the Lord, 1260
    lads, I am glad you have the money. Hostess, clap
    to the doors: watch to-night, pray to-morrow.
    Gallants, lads, boys, hearts of gold, all the titles
    of good fellowship come to you! What, shall we be
    merry? shall we have a play extempore? 1265
  • Henry V. Content; and the argument shall be thy running away.
  • Falstaff. Ah, no more of that, Hal, an thou lovest me!

[Enter Hostess]

  • Henry V. How now, my lady the hostess! what sayest thou to 1270
  • Hostess Quickly. Marry, my lord, there is a nobleman of the court at
    door would speak with you: he says he comes from
    your father.
  • Henry V. Give him as much as will make him a royal man, and 1275
    send him back again to my mother.
  • Falstaff. What doth gravity out of his bed at midnight? Shall
    I give him his answer? 1280
  • Falstaff. 'Faith, and I'll send him packing.


  • Henry V. Now, sirs: by'r lady, you fought fair; so did you,
    Peto; so did you, Bardolph: you are lions too, you 1285
    ran away upon instinct, you will not touch the true
    prince; no, fie!
  • Henry V. 'Faith, tell me now in earnest, how came Falstaff's
    sword so hacked? 1290
  • Peto. Why, he hacked it with his dagger, and said he would
    swear truth out of England but he would make you
    believe it was done in fight, and persuaded us to do the like.
  • Lord Bardolph. Yea, and to tickle our noses with spear-grass to
    make them bleed, and then to beslubber our garments 1295
    with it and swear it was the blood of true men. I
    did that I did not this seven year before, I blushed
    to hear his monstrous devices.
  • Henry V. O villain, thou stolest a cup of sack eighteen years
    ago, and wert taken with the manner, and ever since 1300
    thou hast blushed extempore. Thou hadst fire and
    sword on thy side, and yet thou rannest away: what
    instinct hadst thou for it?
  • Lord Bardolph. My lord, do you see these meteors? do you behold
    these exhalations? 1305
  • Henry V. Hot livers and cold purses.
  • Henry V. No, if rightly taken, halter. 1310
    [Re-enter FALSTAFF]
    Here comes lean Jack, here comes bare-bone.
    How now, my sweet creature of bombast!
    How long is't ago, Jack, since thou sawest thine own knee?
  • Falstaff. My own knee! when I was about thy years, Hal, I was 1315
    not an eagle's talon in the waist; I could have
    crept into any alderman's thumb-ring: a plague of
    sighing and grief! it blows a man up like a
    bladder. There's villanous news abroad: here was
    Sir John Bracy from your father; you must to the 1320
    court in the morning. That same mad fellow of the
    north, Percy, and he of Wales, that gave Amamon the
    bastinado and made Lucifer cuckold and swore the
    devil his true liegeman upon the cross of a Welsh
    hook—what a plague call you him? 1325
  • Falstaff. Owen, Owen, the same; and his son-in-law Mortimer,
    and old Northumberland, and that sprightly Scot of
    Scots, Douglas, that runs o' horseback up a hill
    perpendicular,— 1330
  • Henry V. He that rides at high speed and with his pistol
    kills a sparrow flying.
  • Henry V. So did he never the sparrow.
  • Falstaff. Well, that rascal hath good mettle in him; he will not run. 1335
  • Henry V. Why, what a rascal art thou then, to praise him so
    for running!
  • Falstaff. O' horseback, ye cuckoo; but afoot he will not budge a foot.
  • Henry V. Yes, Jack, upon instinct.
  • Falstaff. I grant ye, upon instinct. Well, he is there too, 1340
    and one Mordake, and a thousand blue-caps more:
    Worcester is stolen away to-night; thy father's
    beard is turned white with the news: you may buy
    land now as cheap as stinking mackerel.
  • Henry V. Why, then, it is like, if there come a hot June and 1345
    this civil buffeting hold, we shall buy maidenheads
    as they buy hob-nails, by the hundreds.
  • Falstaff. By the mass, lad, thou sayest true; it is like we
    shall have good trading that way. But tell me, Hal,
    art not thou horrible afeard? thou being 1350
    heir-apparent, could the world pick thee out three
    such enemies again as that fiend Douglas, that
    spirit Percy, and that devil Glendower? Art thou
    not horribly afraid? doth not thy blood thrill at
    it? 1355
  • Henry V. Not a whit, i' faith; I lack some of thy instinct.
  • Falstaff. Well, thou wert be horribly chid tomorrow when thou
    comest to thy father: if thou love me, practise an answer.
  • Henry V. Do thou stand for my father, and examine me upon the
    particulars of my life. 1360
  • Falstaff. Shall I? content: this chair shall be my state,
    this dagger my sceptre, and this cushion my crown.
  • Henry V. Thy state is taken for a joined-stool, thy golden
    sceptre for a leaden dagger, and thy precious rich
    crown for a pitiful bald crown! 1365
  • Falstaff. Well, an the fire of grace be not quite out of thee,
    now shalt thou be moved. Give me a cup of sack to
    make my eyes look red, that it may be thought I have
    wept; for I must speak in passion, and I will do it
    in King Cambyses' vein. 1370
  • Falstaff. And here is my speech. Stand aside, nobility.
  • Falstaff. Weep not, sweet queen; for trickling tears are vain.
  • Falstaff. For God's sake, lords, convey my tristful queen;
    For tears do stop the flood-gates of her eyes.
  • Hostess Quickly. O Jesu, he doth it as like one of these harlotry
    players as ever I see!
  • Falstaff. Peace, good pint-pot; peace, good tickle-brain. 1380
    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 1385
    partly thy mother's word, partly my own opinion,
    but chiefly a villanous trick of thine eye and a
    foolish-hanging 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 1390
    the blessed sun of heaven prove a micher and eat
    blackberries? a question not to be asked. Shall
    the sun of England prove a thief and take purses? a
    question to be asked. There is a thing, Harry,
    which thou hast often heard of and it is known to 1395
    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 1400
    woes also: and yet there is a virtuous man whom I
    have often noted in thy company, but I know not his name.
  • Henry V. What manner of man, an it like your majesty?
  • Falstaff. A goodly portly man, i' faith, and a corpulent; of a
    cheerful look, a pleasing eye and a most noble 1405
    carriage; and, as I think, his age some fifty, or,
    by'r lady, inclining to three score; 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 1410
    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? 1415
  • Henry V. Dost thou speak like a king? Do thou stand for me,
    and I'll play my father.
  • Falstaff. Depose me? if thou dost it half so gravely, so
    majestically, both in word and matter, hang me up by
    the heels for a rabbit-sucker or a poulter's hare. 1420
  • Falstaff. And here I stand: judge, my masters.
  • Henry V. Now, Harry, whence come you?
  • Falstaff. My noble lord, from Eastcheap.
  • Henry V. The complaints I hear of thee are grievous. 1425
  • Falstaff. 'Sblood, my lord, they are false: nay, I'll tickle
    ye for a young prince, i' faith.
  • Henry V. Swearest thou, ungracious boy? henceforth ne'er look
    on me. Thou art violently carried away from grace:
    there is a devil haunts thee in the likeness of an 1430
    old fat man; a tun of man is thy companion. Why
    dost thou converse with that trunk of humours, that
    bolting-hutch of beastliness, that swollen parcel
    of dropsies, that huge bombard of sack, that stuffed
    cloak-bag of guts, that roasted Manningtree ox with 1435
    the pudding in his belly, that reverend vice, that
    grey iniquity, that father ruffian, that vanity in
    years? Wherein is he good, but to taste sack and
    drink it? wherein neat and cleanly, but to carve a
    capon and eat it? wherein cunning, but in craft? 1440
    wherein crafty, but in villany? wherein villanous,
    but in all things? wherein worthy, but in nothing?
  • Falstaff. I would your grace would take me with you: whom
    means your grace?
  • Henry V. That villanous abominable misleader of youth, 1445
    Falstaff, that old white-bearded Satan.
  • Falstaff. But to say I know more harm in him than in myself,
    were to say more than I know. That he is old, the 1450
    more the pity, his white hairs do witness it; but
    that he is, saving your reverence, a whoremaster,
    that I utterly deny. If sack and sugar be a fault,
    God help the wicked! if to be old and merry be a
    sin, then many an old host that I know is damned: if 1455
    to be fat be to be hated, then Pharaoh's lean kine
    are to be loved. No, my good lord; banish Peto,
    banish Bardolph, banish Poins: but for sweet Jack
    Falstaff, kind Jack Falstaff, true Jack Falstaff,
    valiant Jack Falstaff, and therefore more valiant, 1460
    being, as he is, old Jack Falstaff, banish not him
    thy Harry's company, banish not him thy Harry's
    company: banish plump Jack, and banish all the world.

[A knocking heard]

[Exeunt Hostess, FRANCIS, and BARDOLPH]

[Re-enter BARDOLPH, running]

  • Lord Bardolph. O, my lord, my lord! the sheriff with a most
    monstrous watch is at the door.
  • Falstaff. Out, ye rogue! Play out the play: I have much to 1470
    say in the behalf of that Falstaff.

[Re-enter the Hostess]

  • Henry V. Heigh, heigh! the devil rides upon a fiddlestick:
    what's the matter? 1475
  • Hostess Quickly. The sheriff and all the watch are at the door: they
    are come to search the house. Shall I let them in?
  • Falstaff. Dost thou hear, Hal? never call a true piece of
    gold a counterfeit: thou art essentially mad,
    without seeming so. 1480
  • Henry V. And thou a natural coward, without instinct.
  • Falstaff. I deny your major: if you will deny the sheriff,
    so; if not, let him enter: if I become not a cart
    as well as another man, a plague on my bringing up!
    I hope I shall as soon be strangled with a halter as another. 1485
  • Henry V. Go, hide thee behind the arras: the rest walk up
    above. Now, my masters, for a true face and good
  • Falstaff. Both which I have had: but their date is out, and
    therefore I'll hide me. 1490
  • Henry V. Call in the sheriff.
    [Exeunt all except PRINCE HENRY and PETO]
    [Enter Sheriff and the Carrier]
    Now, master sheriff, what is your will with me?
  • Sheriff. First, pardon me, my lord. A hue and cry 1495
    Hath follow'd certain men unto this house.
  • Sheriff. One of them is well known, my gracious lord,
    A gross fat man.
  • Henry V. The man, I do assure you, is not here;
    For I myself at this time have employ'd him.
    And, sheriff, I will engage my word to thee
    That I will, by to-morrow dinner-time,
    Send him to answer thee, or any man, 1505
    For any thing he shall be charged withal:
    And so let me entreat you leave the house.
  • Sheriff. I will, my lord. There are two gentlemen
    Have in this robbery lost three hundred marks.
  • Henry V. It may be so: if he have robb'd these men, 1510
    He shall be answerable; and so farewell.
  • Sheriff. Good night, my noble lord.
  • Henry V. I think it is good morrow, is it not?
  • Sheriff. Indeed, my lord, I think it be two o'clock.

[Exeunt Sheriff and Carrier]

  • Henry V. This oily rascal is known as well as Paul's. Go,
    call him forth.
  • Peto. Falstaff!—Fast asleep behind the arras, and
    snorting like a horse.
  • Henry V. Hark, how hard he fetches breath. Search his pockets. 1520
    [He searcheth his pockets, and findeth certain papers]
    What hast thou found?
  • Peto. Nothing but papers, my lord.
  • Henry V. Let's see what they be: read them.
  • Peto. [Reads] Item, A capon,. . 2s. 2d. 1525
    Item, Sauce,. . . 4d.
    Item, Sack, two gallons, 5s. 8d.
    Item, Anchovies and sack after supper, 2s. 6d.
    Item, Bread, ob.
  • Henry V. O monstrous! but one half-penny-worth of bread to 1530
    this intolerable deal of sack! What there is else,
    keep close; we'll read it at more advantage: there
    let him sleep till day. I'll to the court in the
    morning. We must all to the wars, and thy place
    shall be honourable. I'll procure this fat rogue a 1535
    charge of foot; and I know his death will be a
    march of twelve-score. The money shall be paid
    back again with advantage. Be with me betimes in
    the morning; and so, good morrow, Peto.


  • Peto. Good morrow, good my lord.
. previous scene      

Act III, Scene 1

Bangor. The Archdeacon’s house.

      next scene .


  • Mortimer. These promises are fair, the parties sure,
    And our induction full of prosperous hope.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Lord Mortimer, and cousin Glendower, 1545
    Will you sit down?
    And uncle Worcester: a plague upon it!
    I have forgot the map.
  • Glendower. No, here it is.
    Sit, cousin Percy; sit, good cousin Hotspur, 1550
    For by that name as oft as Lancaster
    Doth speak of you, his cheek looks pale and with
    A rising sigh he wisheth you in heaven.
  • Glendower. I cannot blame him: at my nativity 1555
    The front of heaven was full of fiery shapes,
    Of burning cressets; and at my birth
    The frame and huge foundation of the earth
    Shaked like a coward.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Why, so it would have done at the same season, if 1560
    your mother's cat had but kittened, though yourself
    had never been born.
  • Glendower. I say the earth did shake when I was born.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). And I say the earth was not of my mind,
    If you suppose as fearing you it shook. 1565
  • Glendower. The heavens were all on fire, the earth did tremble.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). O, then the earth shook to see the heavens on fire,
    And not in fear of your nativity.
    Diseased nature oftentimes breaks forth
    In strange eruptions; oft the teeming earth 1570
    Is with a kind of colic pinch'd and vex'd
    By the imprisoning of unruly wind
    Within her womb; which, for enlargement striving,
    Shakes the old beldam earth and topples down
    Steeples and moss-grown towers. At your birth 1575
    Our grandam earth, having this distemperature,
    In passion shook.
  • Glendower. Cousin, of many men
    I do not bear these crossings. Give me leave
    To tell you once again that at my birth 1580
    The front of heaven was full of fiery shapes,
    The goats ran from the mountains, and the herds
    Were strangely clamorous to the frighted fields.
    These signs have mark'd me extraordinary;
    And all the courses of my life do show 1585
    I am not in the roll of common men.
    Where is he living, clipp'd in with the sea
    That chides the banks of England, Scotland, Wales,
    Which calls me pupil, or hath read to me?
    And bring him out that is but woman's son 1590
    Can trace me in the tedious ways of art
    And hold me pace in deep experiments.
  • Mortimer. Peace, cousin Percy; you will make him mad. 1595
  • Glendower. I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
  • Glendower. Why, I can teach you, cousin, to command
    The devil. 1600
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). And I can teach thee, coz, to shame the devil
    By telling truth: tell truth and shame the devil.
    If thou have power to raise him, bring him hither,
    And I'll be sworn I have power to shame him hence.
    O, while you live, tell truth and shame the devil! 1605
  • Mortimer. Come, come, no more of this unprofitable chat.
  • Glendower. Three times hath Henry Bolingbroke made head
    Against my power; thrice from the banks of Wye
    And sandy-bottom'd Severn have I sent him
    Bootless home and weather-beaten back. 1610
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Home without boots, and in foul weather too!
    How 'scapes he agues, in the devil's name?
  • Glendower. Come, here's the map: shall we divide our right
    According to our threefold order ta'en?
  • Mortimer. The archdeacon hath divided it 1615
    Into three limits very equally:
    England, from Trent and Severn hitherto,
    By south and east is to my part assign'd:
    All westward, Wales beyond the Severn shore,
    And all the fertile land within that bound, 1620
    To Owen Glendower: and, dear coz, to you
    The remnant northward, lying off from Trent.
    And our indentures tripartite are drawn;
    Which being sealed interchangeably,
    A business that this night may execute, 1625
    To-morrow, cousin Percy, you and I
    And my good Lord of Worcester will set forth
    To meet your father and the Scottish power,
    As is appointed us, at Shrewsbury.
    My father Glendower is not ready yet, 1630
    Not shall we need his help these fourteen days.
    Within that space you may have drawn together
    Your tenants, friends and neighbouring gentlemen.
  • Glendower. A shorter time shall send me to you, lords:
    And in my conduct shall your ladies come; 1635
    From whom you now must steal and take no leave,
    For there will be a world of water shed
    Upon the parting of your wives and you.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Methinks my moiety, north from Burton here,
    In quantity equals not one of yours: 1640
    See how this river comes me cranking in,
    And cuts me from the best of all my land
    A huge half-moon, a monstrous cantle out.
    I'll have the current in this place damm'd up;
    And here the smug and silver Trent shall run 1645
    In a new channel, fair and evenly;
    It shall not wind with such a deep indent,
    To rob me of so rich a bottom here.
  • Glendower. Not wind? it shall, it must; you see it doth.
  • Mortimer. Yea, but 1650
    Mark how he bears his course, and runs me up
    With like advantage on the other side;
    Gelding the opposed continent as much
    As on the other side it takes from you.
  • Earl of Worcester. Yea, but a little charge will trench him here 1655
    And on this north side win this cape of land;
    And then he runs straight and even.
  • Glendower. I can speak English, lord, as well as you; 1665
    For I was train'd up in the English court;
    Where, being but young, I framed to the harp
    Many an English ditty lovely well
    And gave the tongue a helpful ornament,
    A virtue that was never seen in you. 1670
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Marry,
    And I am glad of it with all my heart:
    I had rather be a kitten and cry mew
    Than one of these same metre ballad-mongers;
    I had rather hear a brazen canstick turn'd, 1675
    Or a dry wheel grate on the axle-tree;
    And that would set my teeth nothing on edge,
    Nothing so much as mincing poetry:
    'Tis like the forced gait of a shuffling nag.
  • Glendower. Come, you shall have Trent turn'd. 1680
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). I do not care: I'll give thrice so much land
    To any well-deserving friend;
    But in the way of bargain, mark ye me,
    I'll cavil on the ninth part of a hair.
    Are the indentures drawn? shall we be gone? 1685
  • Glendower. The moon shines fair; you may away by night:
    I'll haste the writer and withal
    Break with your wives of your departure hence:
    I am afraid my daughter will run mad,
    So much she doteth on her Mortimer. 1690


  • Mortimer. Fie, cousin Percy! how you cross my father!
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). I cannot choose: sometime he angers me
    With telling me of the mouldwarp and the ant,
    Of the dreamer Merlin and his prophecies, 1695
    And of a dragon and a finless fish,
    A clip-wing'd griffin and a moulten raven,
    A couching lion and a ramping cat,
    And such a deal of skimble-skamble stuff
    As puts me from my faith. I tell you what; 1700
    He held me last night at least nine hours
    In reckoning up the several devils' names
    That were his lackeys: I cried 'hum,' and 'well, go to,'
    But mark'd him not a word. O, he is as tedious
    As a tired horse, a railing wife; 1705
    Worse than a smoky house: I had rather live
    With cheese and garlic in a windmill, far,
    Than feed on cates and have him talk to me
    In any summer-house in Christendom.
  • Mortimer. In faith, he is a worthy gentleman, 1710
    Exceedingly well read, and profited
    In strange concealments, valiant as a lion
    And as wondrous affable and as bountiful
    As mines of India. Shall I tell you, cousin?
    He holds your temper in a high respect 1715
    And curbs himself even of his natural scope
    When you come 'cross his humour; faith, he does:
    I warrant you, that man is not alive
    Might so have tempted him as you have done,
    Without the taste of danger and reproof: 1720
    But do not use it oft, let me entreat you.
  • Earl of Worcester. In faith, my lord, you are too wilful-blame;
    And since your coming hither have done enough
    To put him quite beside his patience.
    You must needs learn, lord, to amend this fault: 1725
    Though sometimes it show greatness, courage, blood,—
    And that's the dearest grace it renders you,—
    Yet oftentimes it doth present harsh rage,
    Defect of manners, want of government,
    Pride, haughtiness, opinion and disdain: 1730
    The least of which haunting a nobleman
    Loseth men's hearts and leaves behind a stain
    Upon the beauty of all parts besides,
    Beguiling them of commendation.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Well, I am school'd: good manners be your speed! 1735
    Here come our wives, and let us take our leave.

[Re-enter GLENDOWER with the ladies]

  • Mortimer. This is the deadly spite that angers me;
    My wife can speak no English, I no Welsh.
  • Glendower. My daughter weeps: she will not part with you; 1740
    She'll be a soldier too, she'll to the wars.
  • Mortimer. Good father, tell her that she and my aunt Percy
    Shall follow in your conduct speedily.

[Glendower speaks to her in Welsh, and she answers him in the same]

  • Glendower. She is desperate here; a peevish self-wind harlotry, 1745
    one that no persuasion can do good upon.

[The lady speaks in Welsh]

  • Mortimer. I understand thy looks: that pretty Welsh
    Which thou pour'st down from these swelling heavens
    I am too perfect in; and, but for shame, 1750
    In such a parley should I answer thee.
    [The lady speaks again in Welsh]
    I understand thy kisses and thou mine,
    And that's a feeling disputation:
    But I will never be a truant, love, 1755
    Till I have learned thy language; for thy tongue
    Makes Welsh as sweet as ditties highly penn'd,
    Sung by a fair queen in a summer's bower,
    With ravishing division, to her lute.
  • Glendower. Nay, if you melt, then will she run mad. 1760

[The lady speaks again in Welsh]

  • Mortimer. O, I am ignorance itself in this!
  • Glendower. She bids you on the wanton rushes lay you down
    And rest your gentle head upon her lap,
    And she will sing the song that pleaseth you 1765
    And on your eyelids crown the god of sleep.
    Charming your blood with pleasing heaviness,
    Making such difference 'twixt wake and sleep
    As is the difference betwixt day and night
    The hour before the heavenly-harness'd team 1770
    Begins his golden progress in the east.
  • Mortimer. With all my heart I'll sit and hear her sing:
    By that time will our book, I think, be drawn
  • Glendower. Do so;
    And those musicians that shall play to you 1775
    Hang in the air a thousand leagues from hence,
    And straight they shall be here: sit, and attend.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Come, Kate, thou art perfect in lying down: come,
    quick, quick, that I may lay my head in thy lap.

[The music plays]

  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Now I perceive the devil understands Welsh;
    And 'tis no marvel he is so humorous.
    By'r lady, he is a good musician.
  • Lady Percy. Then should you be nothing but musical for you are 1785
    altogether governed by humours. Lie still, ye thief,
    and hear the lady sing in Welsh.

[Here the lady sings a Welsh song]

  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Not yours, in good sooth! Heart! you swear like a 1800
    comfit-maker's wife. 'Not you, in good sooth,' and
    'as true as I live,' and 'as God shall mend me,' and
    'as sure as day,'
    And givest such sarcenet surety for thy oaths,
    As if thou never walk'st further than Finsbury. 1805
    Swear me, Kate, like a lady as thou art,
    A good mouth-filling oath, and leave 'in sooth,'
    And such protest of pepper-gingerbread,
    To velvet-guards and Sunday-citizens.
    Come, sing. 1810
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). 'Tis the next way to turn tailor, or be red-breast
    teacher. An the indentures be drawn, I'll away
    within these two hours; and so, come in when ye will.


  • Glendower. Come, come, Lord Mortimer; you are as slow
    As hot Lord Percy is on fire to go.
    By this our book is drawn; we'll but seal,
    And then to horse immediately.


. previous scene      

Act III, Scene 2

London. The palace.

      next scene .

[Enter KING HENRY IV, PRINCE HENRY, and others]

  • Henry IV. Lords, give us leave; the Prince of Wales and I
    Must have some private conference; but be near at hand,
    For we shall presently have need of you. 1825
    [Exeunt Lords]
    I know not whether God will have it so,
    For some displeasing service I have done,
    That, in his secret doom, out of my blood
    He'll breed revengement and a scourge for me; 1830
    But thou dost in thy passages of life
    Make me believe that thou art only mark'd
    For the hot vengeance and the rod of heaven
    To punish my mistreadings. Tell me else,
    Could such inordinate and low desires, 1835
    Such poor, such bare, such lewd, such mean attempts,
    Such barren pleasures, rude society,
    As thou art match'd withal and grafted to,
    Accompany the greatness of thy blood
    And hold their level with thy princely heart? 1840
  • Henry V. So please your majesty, I would I could
    Quit all offences with as clear excuse
    As well as I am doubtless I can purge
    Myself of many I am charged withal:
    Yet such extenuation let me beg, 1845
    As, in reproof of many tales devised,
    which oft the ear of greatness needs must hear,
    By smiling pick-thanks and base news-mongers,
    I may, for some things true, wherein my youth
    Hath faulty wander'd and irregular, 1850
    Find pardon on my true submission.
  • Henry IV. God pardon thee! yet let me wonder, Harry,
    At thy affections, which do hold a wing
    Quite from the flight of all thy ancestors.
    Thy place in council thou hast rudely lost. 1855
    Which by thy younger brother is supplied,
    And art almost an alien to the hearts
    Of all the court and princes of my blood:
    The hope and expectation of thy time
    Is ruin'd, and the soul of every man 1860
    Prophetically doth forethink thy fall.
    Had I so lavish of my presence been,
    So common-hackney'd in the eyes of men,
    So stale and cheap to vulgar company,
    Opinion, that did help me to the crown, 1865
    Had still kept loyal to possession
    And left me in reputeless banishment,
    A fellow of no mark nor likelihood.
    By being seldom seen, I could not stir
    But like a comet I was wonder'd at; 1870
    That men would tell their children 'This is he;'
    Others would say 'Where, which is Bolingbroke?'
    And then I stole all courtesy from heaven,
    And dress'd myself in such humility
    That I did pluck allegiance from men's hearts, 1875
    Loud shouts and salutations from their mouths,
    Even in the presence of the crowned king.
    Thus did I keep my person fresh and new;
    My presence, like a robe pontifical,
    Ne'er seen but wonder'd at: and so my state, 1880
    Seldom but sumptuous, showed like a feast
    And won by rareness such solemnity.
    The skipping king, he ambled up and down
    With shallow jesters and rash bavin wits,
    Soon kindled and soon burnt; carded his state, 1885
    Mingled his royalty with capering fools,
    Had his great name profaned with their scorns
    And gave his countenance, against his name,
    To laugh at gibing boys and stand the push
    Of every beardless vain comparative, 1890
    Grew a companion to the common streets,
    Enfeoff'd himself to popularity;
    That, being daily swallow'd by men's eyes,
    They surfeited with honey and began
    To loathe the taste of sweetness, whereof a little 1895
    More than a little is by much too much.
    So when he had occasion to be seen,
    He was but as the cuckoo is in June,
    Heard, not regarded; seen, but with such eyes
    As, sick and blunted with community, 1900
    Afford no extraordinary gaze,
    Such as is bent on sun-like majesty
    When it shines seldom in admiring eyes;
    But rather drowzed and hung their eyelids down,
    Slept in his face and render'd such aspect 1905
    As cloudy men use to their adversaries,
    Being with his presence glutted, gorged and full.
    And in that very line, Harry, standest thou;
    For thou has lost thy princely privilege
    With vile participation: not an eye 1910
    But is a-weary of thy common sight,
    Save mine, which hath desired to see thee more;
    Which now doth that I would not have it do,
    Make blind itself with foolish tenderness.
  • Henry V. I shall hereafter, my thrice gracious lord, 1915
    Be more myself.
  • Henry IV. For all the world
    As thou art to this hour was Richard then
    When I from France set foot at Ravenspurgh,
    And even as I was then is Percy now. 1920
    Now, by my sceptre and my soul to boot,
    He hath more worthy interest to the state
    Than thou the shadow of succession;
    For of no right, nor colour like to right,
    He doth fill fields with harness in the realm, 1925
    Turns head against the lion's armed jaws,
    And, being no more in debt to years than thou,
    Leads ancient lords and reverend bishops on
    To bloody battles and to bruising arms.
    What never-dying honour hath he got 1930
    Against renowned Douglas! whose high deeds,
    Whose hot incursions and great name in arms
    Holds from all soldiers chief majority
    And military title capital
    Through all the kingdoms that acknowledge Christ: 1935
    Thrice hath this Hotspur, Mars in swathling clothes,
    This infant warrior, in his enterprises
    Discomfited great Douglas, ta'en him once,
    Enlarged him and made a friend of him,
    To fill the mouth of deep defiance up 1940
    And shake the peace and safety of our throne.
    And what say you to this? Percy, Northumberland,
    The Archbishop's grace of York, Douglas, Mortimer,
    Capitulate against us and are up.
    But wherefore do I tell these news to thee? 1945
    Why, Harry, do I tell thee of my foes,
    Which art my near'st and dearest enemy?
    Thou that art like enough, through vassal fear,
    Base inclination and the start of spleen
    To fight against me under Percy's pay, 1950
    To dog his heels and curtsy at his frowns,
    To show how much thou art degenerate.
  • Henry V. Do not think so; you shall not find it so:
    And God forgive them that so much have sway'd
    Your majesty's good thoughts away from me! 1955
    I will redeem all this on Percy's head
    And in the closing of some glorious day
    Be bold to tell you that I am your son;
    When I will wear a garment all of blood
    And stain my favours in a bloody mask, 1960
    Which, wash'd away, shall scour my shame with it:
    And that shall be the day, whene'er it lights,
    That this same child of honour and renown,
    This gallant Hotspur, this all-praised knight,
    And your unthought-of Harry chance to meet. 1965
    For every honour sitting on his helm,
    Would they were multitudes, and on my head
    My shames redoubled! for the time will come,
    That I shall make this northern youth exchange
    His glorious deeds for my indignities. 1970
    Percy is but my factor, good my lord,
    To engross up glorious deeds on my behalf;
    And I will call him to so strict account,
    That he shall render every glory up,
    Yea, even the slightest worship of his time, 1975
    Or I will tear the reckoning from his heart.
    This, in the name of God, I promise here:
    The which if He be pleased I shall perform,
    I do beseech your majesty may salve
    The long-grown wounds of my intemperance: 1980
    If not, the end of life cancels all bands;
    And I will die a hundred thousand deaths
    Ere break the smallest parcel of this vow.
  • Henry IV. A hundred thousand rebels die in this:
    Thou shalt have charge and sovereign trust herein. 1985
    [Enter BLUNT]
    How now, good Blunt? thy looks are full of speed.
  • Blunt. So hath the business that I come to speak of.
    Lord Mortimer of Scotland hath sent word
    That Douglas and the English rebels met 1990
    The eleventh of this month at Shrewsbury
    A mighty and a fearful head they are,
    If promises be kept on every hand,
    As ever offer'd foul play in the state.
  • Henry IV. The Earl of Westmoreland set forth to-day; 1995
    With him my son, Lord John of Lancaster;
    For this advertisement is five days old:
    On Wednesday next, Harry, you shall set forward;
    On Thursday we ourselves will march: our meeting
    Is Bridgenorth: and, Harry, you shall march 2000
    Through Gloucestershire; by which account,
    Our business valued, some twelve days hence
    Our general forces at Bridgenorth shall meet.
    Our hands are full of business: let's away;
    Advantage feeds him fat, while men delay. 2005


. previous scene      

Act III, Scene 3

Eastcheap. The Boar’s-Head Tavern.

      next scene .


  • Falstaff. Bardolph, am I not fallen away vilely since this last
    action? do I not bate? do I not dwindle? Why my
    skin hangs about me like an like an old lady's loose 2010
    gown; I am withered like an old apple-john. Well,
    I'll repent, and that suddenly, while I am in some
    liking; I shall be out of heart shortly, and then I
    shall have no strength to repent. An I have not
    forgotten what the inside of a church is made of, I 2015
    am a peppercorn, a brewer's horse: the inside of a
    church! Company, villanous company, hath been the
    spoil of me.
  • Lord Bardolph. Sir John, you are so fretful, you cannot live long.
  • Falstaff. Why, there is it: come sing me a bawdy song; make 2020
    me merry. I was as virtuously given as a gentleman
    need to be; virtuous enough; swore little; diced not
    above seven times a week; went to a bawdy-house once
    in a quarter—of an hour; paid money that I
    borrowed, three of four times; lived well and in 2025
    good compass: and now I live out of all order, out
    of all compass.
  • Lord Bardolph. Why, you are so fat, Sir John, that you must needs
    be out of all compass, out of all reasonable
    compass, Sir John. 2030
  • Falstaff. Do thou amend thy face, and I'll amend my life:
    thou art our admiral, thou bearest the lantern in
    the poop, but 'tis in the nose of thee; thou art the
    Knight of the Burning Lamp.
  • Falstaff. No, I'll be sworn; I make as good use of it as many
    a man doth of a Death's-head or a memento mori: I
    never see thy face but I think upon hell-fire and
    Dives that lived in purple; for there he is in his
    robes, burning, burning. If thou wert any way 2040
    given to virtue, I would swear by thy face; my oath
    should be 'By this fire, that's God's angel:' but
    thou art altogether given over; and wert indeed, but
    for the light in thy face, the son of utter
    darkness. When thou rannest up Gadshill in the 2045
    night to catch my horse, if I did not think thou
    hadst been an ignis fatuus or a ball of wildfire,
    there's no purchase in money. O, thou art a
    perpetual triumph, an everlasting bonfire-light!
    Thou hast saved me a thousand marks in links and 2050
    torches, walking with thee in the night betwixt
    tavern and tavern: but the sack that thou hast
    drunk me would have bought me lights as good cheap
    at the dearest chandler's in Europe. I have
    maintained that salamander of yours with fire any 2055
    time this two and thirty years; God reward me for
  • Falstaff. God-a-mercy! so should I be sure to be heart-burned.
    [Enter Hostess] 2060
    How now, Dame Partlet the hen! have you inquired
    yet who picked my pocket?
  • Hostess Quickly. Why, Sir John, what do you think, Sir John? do you
    think I keep thieves in my house? I have searched,
    I have inquired, so has my husband, man by man, boy 2065
    by boy, servant by servant: the tithe of a hair
    was never lost in my house before.
  • Falstaff. Ye lie, hostess: Bardolph was shaved and lost many
    a hair; and I'll be sworn my pocket was picked. Go
    to, you are a woman, go. 2070
  • Hostess Quickly. Who, I? no; I defy thee: God's light, I was never
    called so in mine own house before.
  • Falstaff. Go to, I know you well enough.
  • Hostess Quickly. No, Sir John; You do not know me, Sir John. I know
    you, Sir John: you owe me money, Sir John; and now 2075
    you pick a quarrel to beguile me of it: I bought
    you a dozen of shirts to your back.
  • Falstaff. Dowlas, filthy dowlas: I have given them away to
    bakers' wives, and they have made bolters of them.
  • Hostess Quickly. Now, as I am a true woman, holland of eight 2080
    shillings an ell. You owe money here besides, Sir
    John, for your diet and by-drinkings, and money lent
    you, four and twenty pound.
  • Falstaff. He had his part of it; let him pay.
  • Falstaff. How! poor? look upon his face; what call you rich?
    let them coin his nose, let them coin his cheeks:
    Ill not pay a denier. What, will you make a younker
    of me? shall I not take mine case in mine inn but I
    shall have my pocket picked? I have lost a 2090
    seal-ring of my grandfather's worth forty mark.
  • Hostess Quickly. O Jesu, I have heard the prince tell him, I know not
    how oft, that ring was copper!
  • Falstaff. How! the prince is a Jack, a sneak-cup: 'sblood, an
    he were here, I would cudgel him like a dog, if he 2095
    would say so.
    [Enter PRINCE HENRY and PETO, marching, and FALSTAFF
    meets them playing on his truncheon like a life]

    How now, lad! is the wind in that door, i' faith?
    must we all march? 2100
  • Henry V. What sayest thou, Mistress Quickly? How doth thy
    husband? I love him well; he is an honest man.
  • Falstaff. Prithee, let her alone, and list to me.
  • Falstaff. The other night I fell asleep here behind the arras
    and had my pocket picked: this house is turned
    bawdy-house; they pick pockets. 2110
  • Henry V. What didst thou lose, Jack?
  • Falstaff. Wilt thou believe me, Hal? three or four bonds of
    forty pound apiece, and a seal-ring of my
  • Henry V. A trifle, some eight-penny matter. 2115
  • Hostess Quickly. So I told him, my lord; and I said I heard your
    grace say so: and, my lord, he speaks most vilely
    of you, like a foul-mouthed man as he is; and said
    he would cudgel you.
  • Falstaff. There's no more faith in thee than in a stewed
    prune; nor no more truth in thee than in a drawn
    fox; and for womanhood, Maid Marian may be the
    deputy's wife of the ward to thee. Go, you thing, 2125
  • Falstaff. What thing! why, a thing to thank God on.
  • Hostess Quickly. I am no thing to thank God on, I would thou
    shouldst know it; I am an honest man's wife: and, 2130
    setting thy knighthood aside, thou art a knave to
    call me so.
  • Falstaff. Setting thy womanhood aside, thou art a beast to say
  • Henry V. An otter, Sir John! Why an otter?
  • Falstaff. Why, she's neither fish nor flesh; a man knows not
    where to have her.
  • Hostess Quickly. Thou art an unjust man in saying so: thou or any 2140
    man knows where to have me, thou knave, thou!
  • Henry V. Thou sayest true, hostess; and he slanders thee most grossly.
  • Hostess Quickly. So he doth you, my lord; and said this other day you
    ought him a thousand pound.
  • Henry V. Sirrah, do I owe you a thousand pound? 2145
  • Falstaff. A thousand pound, Ha! a million: thy love is worth
    a million: thou owest me thy love.
  • Hostess Quickly. Nay, my lord, he called you Jack, and said he would
    cudgel you.
  • Falstaff. Yea, if he said my ring was copper.
  • Henry V. I say 'tis copper: darest thou be as good as thy word now?
  • Falstaff. Why, Hal, thou knowest, as thou art but man, I dare:
    but as thou art prince, I fear thee as I fear the 2155
    roaring of a lion's whelp.
  • Falstaff. The king is to be feared as the lion: dost thou
    think I'll fear thee as I fear thy father? nay, an
    I do, I pray God my girdle break. 2160
  • Henry V. O, if it should, how would thy guts fall about thy
    knees! But, sirrah, there's no room for faith,
    truth, nor honesty in this bosom of thine; it is all
    filled up with guts and midriff. Charge an honest
    woman with picking thy pocket! why, thou whoreson, 2165
    impudent, embossed rascal, if there were anything in
    thy pocket but tavern-reckonings, memorandums of
    bawdy-houses, and one poor penny-worth of
    sugar-candy to make thee long-winded, if thy pocket
    were enriched with any other injuries but these, I 2170
    am a villain: and yet you will stand to if; you will
    not pocket up wrong: art thou not ashamed?
  • Falstaff. Dost thou hear, Hal? thou knowest in the state of
    innocency Adam fell; and what should poor Jack
    Falstaff do in the days of villany? Thou seest I 2175
    have more flesh than another man, and therefore more
    frailty. You confess then, you picked my pocket?
  • Henry V. It appears so by the story.
  • Falstaff. Hostess, I forgive thee: go, make ready breakfast;
    love thy husband, look to thy servants, cherish thy 2180
    guests: thou shalt find me tractable to any honest
    reason: thou seest I am pacified still. Nay,
    prithee, be gone.
    [Exit Hostess]
    Now Hal, to the news at court: for the robbery, 2185
    lad, how is that answered?
  • Henry V. O, my sweet beef, I must still be good angel to
    thee: the money is paid back again.
  • Falstaff. O, I do not like that paying back; 'tis a double labour.
  • Henry V. I am good friends with my father and may do any thing. 2190
  • Falstaff. Rob me the exchequer the first thing thou doest, and
    do it with unwashed hands too.
  • Henry V. I have procured thee, Jack, a charge of foot.
  • Falstaff. I would it had been of horse. Where shall I find 2195
    one that can steal well? O for a fine thief, of the
    age of two and twenty or thereabouts! I am
    heinously unprovided. Well, God be thanked for
    these rebels, they offend none but the virtuous: I
    laud them, I praise them. 2200
  • Henry V. Go bear this letter to Lord John of Lancaster, to my
    brother John; this to my Lord of Westmoreland.
    [Exit Bardolph] 2205
    Go, Peto, to horse, to horse; for thou and I have
    thirty miles to ride yet ere dinner time.
    [Exit Peto]
    Jack, meet me to-morrow in the temple hall at two
    o'clock in the afternoon. 2210
    There shalt thou know thy charge; and there receive
    Money and order for their furniture.
    The land is burning; Percy stands on high;
    And either we or they must lower lie.


  • Falstaff. Rare words! brave world! Hostess, my breakfast, come!
    O, I could wish this tavern were my drum!


. previous scene      

Act IV, Scene 1

The rebel camp near Shrewsbury.

      next scene .


  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Well said, my noble Scot: if speaking truth 2220
    In this fine age were not thought flattery,
    Such attribution should the Douglas have,
    As not a soldier of this season's stamp
    Should go so general current through the world.
    By God, I cannot flatter; I do defy 2225
    The tongues of soothers; but a braver place
    In my heart's love hath no man than yourself:
    Nay, task me to my word; approve me, lord.
  • Earl of Douglas. Thou art the king of honour:
    No man so potent breathes upon the ground 2230
    But I will beard him.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Do so, and 'tis well.
    [Enter a Messenger with letters]
    What letters hast thou there?—I can but thank you.
  • Messenger. These letters come from your father. 2235
  • Messenger. He cannot come, my lord; he is grievous sick.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). 'Zounds! how has he the leisure to be sick
    In such a rustling time? Who leads his power?
    Under whose government come they along? 2240
  • Messenger. His letters bear his mind, not I, my lord.
  • Messenger. He did, my lord, four days ere I set forth;
    And at the time of my departure thence
    He was much fear'd by his physicians. 2245
  • Earl of Worcester. I would the state of time had first been whole
    Ere he by sickness had been visited:
    His health was never better worth than now.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Sick now! droop now! this sickness doth infect
    The very life-blood of our enterprise; 2250
    'Tis catching hither, even to our camp.
    He writes me here, that inward sickness—
    And that his friends by deputation could not
    So soon be drawn, nor did he think it meet
    To lay so dangerous and dear a trust 2255
    On any soul removed but on his own.
    Yet doth he give us bold advertisement,
    That with our small conjunction we should on,
    To see how fortune is disposed to us;
    For, as he writes, there is no quailing now. 2260
    Because the king is certainly possess'd
    Of all our purposes. What say you to it?
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). A perilous gash, a very limb lopp'd off:
    And yet, in faith, it is not; his present want 2265
    Seems more than we shall find it: were it good
    To set the exact wealth of all our states
    All at one cast? to set so rich a main
    On the nice hazard of one doubtful hour?
    It were not good; for therein should we read 2270
    The very bottom and the soul of hope,
    The very list, the very utmost bound
    Of all our fortunes.
  • Earl of Douglas. 'Faith, and so we should;
    Where now remains a sweet reversion: 2275
    We may boldly spend upon the hope of what
    Is to come in:
    A comfort of retirement lives in this.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). A rendezvous, a home to fly unto.
    If that the devil and mischance look big 2280
    Upon the maidenhead of our affairs.
  • Earl of Worcester. But yet I would your father had been here.
    The quality and hair of our attempt
    Brooks no division: it will be thought
    By some, that know not why he is away, 2285
    That wisdom, loyalty and mere dislike
    Of our proceedings kept the earl from hence:
    And think how such an apprehension
    May turn the tide of fearful faction
    And breed a kind of question in our cause; 2290
    For well you know we of the offering side
    Must keep aloof from strict arbitrement,
    And stop all sight-holes, every loop from whence
    The eye of reason may pry in upon us:
    This absence of your father's draws a curtain, 2295
    That shows the ignorant a kind of fear
    Before not dreamt of.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). You strain too far.
    I rather of his absence make this use:
    It lends a lustre and more great opinion, 2300
    A larger dare to our great enterprise,
    Than if the earl were here; for men must think,
    If we without his help can make a head
    To push against a kingdom, with his help
    We shall o'erturn it topsy-turvy down. 2305
    Yet all goes well, yet all our joints are whole.
  • Earl of Douglas. As heart can think: there is not such a word
    Spoke of in Scotland as this term of fear.


  • Vernon. Pray God my news be worth a welcome, lord.
    The Earl of Westmoreland, seven thousand strong,
    Is marching hitherwards; with him Prince John.
  • Vernon. And further, I have learn'd, 2315
    The king himself in person is set forth,
    Or hitherwards intended speedily,
    With strong and mighty preparation.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). He shall be welcome too. Where is his son,
    The nimble-footed madcap Prince of Wales, 2320
    And his comrades, that daff'd the world aside,
    And bid it pass?
  • Vernon. All furnish'd, all in arms;
    All plumed like estridges that with the wind
    Baited like eagles having lately bathed; 2325
    Glittering in golden coats, like images;
    As full of spirit as the month of May,
    And gorgeous as the sun at midsummer;
    Wanton as youthful goats, wild as young bulls.
    I saw young Harry, with his beaver on, 2330
    His cuisses on his thighs, gallantly arm'd
    Rise from the ground like feather'd Mercury,
    And vaulted with such ease into his seat,
    As if an angel dropp'd down from the clouds,
    To turn and wind a fiery Pegasus 2335
    And witch the world with noble horsemanship.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). No more, no more: worse than the sun in March,
    This praise doth nourish agues. Let them come:
    They come like sacrifices in their trim,
    And to the fire-eyed maid of smoky war 2340
    All hot and bleeding will we offer them:
    The mailed Mars shall on his altar sit
    Up to the ears in blood. I am on fire
    To hear this rich reprisal is so nigh
    And yet not ours. Come, let me taste my horse, 2345
    Who is to bear me like a thunderbolt
    Against the bosom of the Prince of Wales:
    Harry to Harry shall, hot horse to horse,
    Meet and ne'er part till one drop down a corse.
    O that Glendower were come! 2350
  • Vernon. There is more news:
    I learn'd in Worcester, as I rode along,
    He cannot draw his power this fourteen days.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Forty let it be:
    My father and Glendower being both away,
    The powers of us may serve so great a day 2360
    Come, let us take a muster speedily:
    Doomsday is near; die all, die merrily.
  • Earl of Douglas. Talk not of dying: I am out of fear
    Of death or death's hand for this one-half year.


. previous scene      

Act IV, Scene 2

A public road near Coventry.

      next scene .


  • Falstaff. Bardolph, get thee before to Coventry; fill me a
    bottle of sack: our soldiers shall march through;
    we'll to Sutton Co'fil' tonight.
  • Falstaff. An if it do, take it for thy labour; and if it make
    twenty, take them all; I'll answer the coinage. Bid
    my lieutenant Peto meet me at town's end. 2375


  • Falstaff. If I be not ashamed of my soldiers, I am a soused
    gurnet. I have misused the king's press damnably.
    I have got, in exchange of a hundred and fifty 2380
    soldiers, three hundred and odd pounds. I press me
    none but good house-holders, yeoman's sons; inquire
    me out contracted bachelors, such as had been asked
    twice on the banns; such a commodity of warm slaves,
    as had as lieve hear the devil as a drum; such as 2385
    fear the report of a caliver worse than a struck
    fowl or a hurt wild-duck. I pressed me none but such
    toasts-and-butter, with hearts in their bellies no
    bigger than pins' heads, and they have bought out
    their services; and now my whole charge consists of 2390
    ancients, corporals, lieutenants, gentlemen of
    companies, slaves as ragged as Lazarus in the
    painted cloth, where the glutton's dogs licked his
    sores; and such as indeed were never soldiers, but
    discarded unjust serving-men, younger sons to 2395
    younger brothers, revolted tapsters and ostlers
    trade-fallen, the cankers of a calm world and a
    long peace, ten times more dishonourable ragged than
    an old faced ancient: and such have I, to fill up
    the rooms of them that have bought out their 2400
    services, that you would think that I had a hundred
    and fifty tattered prodigals lately come from
    swine-keeping, from eating draff and husks. A mad
    fellow met me on the way and told me I had unloaded
    all the gibbets and pressed the dead bodies. No eye 2405
    hath seen such scarecrows. I'll not march through
    Coventry with them, that's flat: nay, and the
    villains march wide betwixt the legs, as if they had
    gyves on; for indeed I had the most of them out of
    prison. There's but a shirt and a half in all my 2410
    company; and the half shirt is two napkins tacked
    together and thrown over the shoulders like an
    herald's coat without sleeves; and the shirt, to say
    the truth, stolen from my host at Saint Alban's, or
    the red-nose innkeeper of Daventry. But that's all 2415
    one; they'll find linen enough on every hedge.


  • Henry V. How now, blown Jack! how now, quilt!
  • Falstaff. What, Hal! how now, mad wag! what a devil dost thou
    in Warwickshire? My good Lord of Westmoreland, I 2420
    cry you mercy: I thought your honour had already been
    at Shrewsbury.
  • Earl of Westmoreland. Faith, Sir John,'tis more than time that I were
    there, and you too; but my powers are there already.
    The king, I can tell you, looks for us all: we must 2425
    away all night.
  • Falstaff. Tut, never fear me: I am as vigilant as a cat to
    steal cream.
  • Henry V. I think, to steal cream indeed, for thy theft hath
    already made thee butter. But tell me, Jack, whose 2430
    fellows are these that come after?
  • Henry V. I did never see such pitiful rascals.
  • Falstaff. Tut, tut; good enough to toss; food for powder, food
    for powder; they'll fill a pit as well as better: 2435
    tush, man, mortal men, mortal men.
  • Falstaff. 'Faith, for their poverty, I know not where they had
    that; and for their bareness, I am sure they never 2440
    learned that of me.
  • Henry V. No I'll be sworn; unless you call three fingers on
    the ribs bare. But, sirrah, make haste: Percy is
    already in the field.
  • Falstaff. What, is the king encamped? 2445
  • Falstaff. Well,
    To the latter end of a fray and the beginning of a feast
    Fits a dull fighter and a keen guest.


. previous scene      

Act IV, Scene 3

The rebel camp near Shrewsbury.

      next scene .


  • Earl of Douglas. You do not counsel well:
    You speak it out of fear and cold heart.
  • Vernon. Do me no slander, Douglas: by my life,
    And I dare well maintain it with my life,
    If well-respected honour bid me on, 2465
    I hold as little counsel with weak fear
    As you, my lord, or any Scot that this day lives:
    Let it be seen to-morrow in the battle
    Which of us fears.
  • Vernon. Come, come it nay not be. I wonder much,
    Being men of such great leading as you are,
    That you foresee not what impediments 2475
    Drag back our expedition: certain horse
    Of my cousin Vernon's are not yet come up:
    Your uncle Worcester's horse came but today;
    And now their pride and mettle is asleep,
    Their courage with hard labour tame and dull, 2480
    That not a horse is half the half of himself.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). So are the horses of the enemy
    In general, journey-bated and brought low:
    The better part of ours are full of rest.
  • Earl of Worcester. The number of the king exceedeth ours: 2485
    For God's sake. cousin, stay till all come in.

[The trumpet sounds a parley]


  • Blunt. I come with gracious offers from the king,
    if you vouchsafe me hearing and respect. 2490
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Welcome, Sir Walter Blunt; and would to God
    You were of our determination!
    Some of us love you well; and even those some
    Envy your great deservings and good name,
    Because you are not of our quality, 2495
    But stand against us like an enemy.
  • Blunt. And God defend but still I should stand so,
    So long as out of limit and true rule
    You stand against anointed majesty.
    But to my charge. The king hath sent to know 2500
    The nature of your griefs, and whereupon
    You conjure from the breast of civil peace
    Such bold hostility, teaching his duteous land
    Audacious cruelty. If that the king
    Have any way your good deserts forgot, 2505
    Which he confesseth to be manifold,
    He bids you name your griefs; and with all speed
    You shall have your desires with interest
    And pardon absolute for yourself and these
    Herein misled by your suggestion. 2510
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). The king is kind; and well we know the king
    Knows at what time to promise, when to pay.
    My father and my uncle and myself
    Did give him that same royalty he wears;
    And when he was not six and twenty strong, 2515
    Sick in the world's regard, wretched and low,
    A poor unminded outlaw sneaking home,
    My father gave him welcome to the shore;
    And when he heard him swear and vow to God
    He came but to be Duke of Lancaster, 2520
    To sue his livery and beg his peace,
    With tears of innocency and terms of zeal,
    My father, in kind heart and pity moved,
    Swore him assistance and perform'd it too.
    Now when the lords and barons of the realm 2525
    Perceived Northumberland did lean to him,
    The more and less came in with cap and knee;
    Met him in boroughs, cities, villages,
    Attended him on bridges, stood in lanes,
    Laid gifts before him, proffer'd him their oaths, 2530
    Gave him their heirs, as pages follow'd him
    Even at the heels in golden multitudes.
    He presently, as greatness knows itself,
    Steps me a little higher than his vow
    Made to my father, while his blood was poor, 2535
    Upon the naked shore at Ravenspurgh;
    And now, forsooth, takes on him to reform
    Some certain edicts and some strait decrees
    That lie too heavy on the commonwealth,
    Cries out upon abuses, seems to weep 2540
    Over his country's wrongs; and by this face,
    This seeming brow of justice, did he win
    The hearts of all that he did angle for;
    Proceeded further; cut me off the heads
    Of all the favourites that the absent king 2545
    In deputation left behind him here,
    When he was personal in the Irish war.
  • Blunt. Tut, I came not to hear this.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Then to the point.
    In short time after, he deposed the king; 2550
    Soon after that, deprived him of his life;
    And in the neck of that, task'd the whole state:
    To make that worse, suffer'd his kinsman March,
    Who is, if every owner were well placed,
    Indeed his king, to be engaged in Wales, 2555
    There without ransom to lie forfeited;
    Disgraced me in my happy victories,
    Sought to entrap me by intelligence;
    Rated mine uncle from the council-board;
    In rage dismiss'd my father from the court; 2560
    Broke oath on oath, committed wrong on wrong,
    And in conclusion drove us to seek out
    This head of safety; and withal to pry
    Into his title, the which we find
    Too indirect for long continuance. 2565
  • Blunt. Shall I return this answer to the king?
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Not so, Sir Walter: we'll withdraw awhile.
    Go to the king; and let there be impawn'd
    Some surety for a safe return again,
    And in the morning early shall my uncle 2570
    Bring him our purposes: and so farewell.
  • Blunt. I would you would accept of grace and love.


. previous scene      

Act IV, Scene 4

York. The ARCHBISHOP’S palace.

      next scene .


  • Archbishop Scroop. Hie, good Sir Michael; bear this sealed brief
    With winged haste to the lord marshal;
    This to my cousin Scroop, and all the rest
    To whom they are directed. If you knew 2580
    How much they do to import, you would make haste.
  • Archbishop Scroop. Like enough you do.
    To-morrow, good Sir Michael, is a day 2585
    Wherein the fortune of ten thousand men
    Must bide the touch; for, sir, at Shrewsbury,
    As I am truly given to understand,
    The king with mighty and quick-raised power
    Meets with Lord Harry: and, I fear, Sir Michael, 2590
    What with the sickness of Northumberland,
    Whose power was in the first proportion,
    And what with Owen Glendower's absence thence,
    Who with them was a rated sinew too
    And comes not in, o'er-ruled by prophecies, 2595
    I fear the power of Percy is too weak
    To wage an instant trial with the king.
  • Sir Michael. Why, my good lord, you need not fear;
    There is Douglas and Lord Mortimer.
  • Sir Michael. But there is Mordake, Vernon, Lord Harry Percy,
    And there is my Lord of Worcester and a head
    Of gallant warriors, noble gentlemen.
  • Archbishop Scroop. And so there is: but yet the king hath drawn
    The special head of all the land together: 2605
    The Prince of Wales, Lord John of Lancaster,
    The noble Westmoreland and warlike Blunt;
    And moe corrivals and dear men
    Of estimation and command in arms.
  • Sir Michael. Doubt not, my lord, they shall be well opposed. 2610
  • Archbishop Scroop. I hope no less, yet needful 'tis to fear;
    And, to prevent the worst, Sir Michael, speed:
    For if Lord Percy thrive not, ere the king
    Dismiss his power, he means to visit us,
    For he hath heard of our confederacy, 2615
    And 'tis but wisdom to make strong against him:
    Therefore make haste. I must go write again
    To other friends; and so farewell, Sir Michael.


. previous scene      

Act V, Scene 1

KING HENRY IV’s camp near Shrewsbury.

      next scene .


  • Henry IV. How bloodily the sun begins to peer
    Above yon busky hill! the day looks pale
    At his distemperature.
  • Henry V. The southern wind
    Doth play the trumpet to his purposes, 2625
    And by his hollow whistling in the leaves
    Foretells a tempest and a blustering day.
  • Henry IV. Then with the losers let it sympathize,
    For nothing can seem foul to those that win.
    [The trumpet sounds] 2630
    [Enter WORCESTER and VERNON]
    How now, my Lord of Worcester! 'tis not well
    That you and I should meet upon such terms
    As now we meet. You have deceived our trust,
    And made us doff our easy robes of peace, 2635
    To crush our old limbs in ungentle steel:
    This is not well, my lord, this is not well.
    What say you to it? will you again unknit
    This curlish knot of all-abhorred war?
    And move in that obedient orb again 2640
    Where you did give a fair and natural light,
    And be no more an exhaled meteor,
    A prodigy of fear and a portent
    Of broached mischief to the unborn times?
  • Earl of Worcester. Hear me, my liege: 2645
    For mine own part, I could be well content
    To entertain the lag-end of my life
    With quiet hours; for I do protest,
    I have not sought the day of this dislike.
  • Henry IV. You have not sought it! how comes it, then? 2650
  • Falstaff. Rebellion lay in his way, and he found it.
  • Earl of Worcester. It pleased your majesty to turn your looks
    Of favour from myself and all our house;
    And yet I must remember you, my lord, 2655
    We were the first and dearest of your friends.
    For you my staff of office did I break
    In Richard's time; and posted day and night
    to meet you on the way, and kiss your hand,
    When yet you were in place and in account 2660
    Nothing so strong and fortunate as I.
    It was myself, my brother and his son,
    That brought you home and boldly did outdare
    The dangers of the time. You swore to us,
    And you did swear that oath at Doncaster, 2665
    That you did nothing purpose 'gainst the state;
    Nor claim no further than your new-fall'n right,
    The seat of Gaunt, dukedom of Lancaster:
    To this we swore our aid. But in short space
    It rain'd down fortune showering on your head; 2670
    And such a flood of greatness fell on you,
    What with our help, what with the absent king,
    What with the injuries of a wanton time,
    The seeming sufferances that you had borne,
    And the contrarious winds that held the king 2675
    So long in his unlucky Irish wars
    That all in England did repute him dead:
    And from this swarm of fair advantages
    You took occasion to be quickly woo'd
    To gripe the general sway into your hand; 2680
    Forget your oath to us at Doncaster;
    And being fed by us you used us so
    As that ungentle hull, the cuckoo's bird,
    Useth the sparrow; did oppress our nest;
    Grew by our feeding to so great a bulk 2685
    That even our love durst not come near your sight
    For fear of swallowing; but with nimble wing
    We were enforced, for safety sake, to fly
    Out of sight and raise this present head;
    Whereby we stand opposed by such means 2690
    As you yourself have forged against yourself
    By unkind usage, dangerous countenance,
    And violation of all faith and troth
    Sworn to us in your younger enterprise.
  • Henry IV. These things indeed you have articulate, 2695
    Proclaim'd at market-crosses, read in churches,
    To face the garment of rebellion
    With some fine colour that may please the eye
    Of fickle changelings and poor discontents,
    Which gape and rub the elbow at the news 2700
    Of hurlyburly innovation:
    And never yet did insurrection want
    Such water-colours to impaint his cause;
    Nor moody beggars, starving for a time
    Of pellmell havoc and confusion. 2705
  • Henry V. In both your armies there is many a soul
    Shall pay full dearly for this encounter,
    If once they join in trial. Tell your nephew,
    The Prince of Wales doth join with all the world
    In praise of Henry Percy: by my hopes, 2710
    This present enterprise set off his head,
    I do not think a braver gentleman,
    More active-valiant or more valiant-young,
    More daring or more bold, is now alive
    To grace this latter age with noble deeds. 2715
    For my part, I may speak it to my shame,
    I have a truant been to chivalry;
    And so I hear he doth account me too;
    Yet this before my father's majesty—
    I am content that he shall take the odds 2720
    Of his great name and estimation,
    And will, to save the blood on either side,
    Try fortune with him in a single fight.
  • Henry IV. And, Prince of Wales, so dare we venture thee,
    Albeit considerations infinite 2725
    Do make against it. No, good Worcester, no,
    We love our people well; even those we love
    That are misled upon your cousin's part;
    And, will they take the offer of our grace,
    Both he and they and you, every man 2730
    Shall be my friend again and I'll be his:
    So tell your cousin, and bring me word
    What he will do: but if he will not yield,
    Rebuke and dread correction wait on us
    And they shall do their office. So, be gone; 2735
    We will not now be troubled with reply:
    We offer fair; take it advisedly.


  • Henry V. It will not be accepted, on my life:
    The Douglas and the Hotspur both together 2740
    Are confident against the world in arms.
  • Henry IV. Hence, therefore, every leader to his charge;
    For, on their answer, will we set on them:
    And God befriend us, as our cause is just!

[Exeunt all but PRINCE HENRY and FALSTAFF]

  • Falstaff. Hal, if thou see me down in the battle and bestride
    me, so; 'tis a point of friendship.
  • Henry V. Nothing but a colossus can do thee that friendship.
    Say thy prayers, and farewell.
  • Falstaff. I would 'twere bed-time, Hal, and all well. 2750
  • Henry V. Why, thou owest God a death.


  • Falstaff. 'Tis not due yet; I would be loath to pay him before
    his day. What need I be so forward with him that
    calls not on me? Well, 'tis no matter; honour pricks 2755
    me on. Yea, but how if honour prick me off when I
    come on? how then? Can honour set to a leg? no: or
    an arm? no: or take away the grief of a wound? no.
    Honour hath no skill in surgery, then? no. What is
    honour? a word. What is in that word honour? what 2760
    is that honour? air. A trim reckoning! Who hath it?
    he that died o' Wednesday. Doth he feel it? no.
    Doth he hear it? no. 'Tis insensible, then. Yea,
    to the dead. But will it not live with the living?
    no. Why? detraction will not suffer it. Therefore 2765
    I'll none of it. Honour is a mere scutcheon: and so
    ends my catechism.


. previous scene      

Act V, Scene 2

The rebel camp.

      next scene .


  • Earl of Worcester. O, no, my nephew must not know, Sir Richard, 2770
    The liberal and kind offer of the king.
  • Earl of Worcester. Then are we all undone.
    It is not possible, it cannot be,
    The king should keep his word in loving us; 2775
    He will suspect us still and find a time
    To punish this offence in other faults:
    Suspicion all our lives shall be stuck full of eyes;
    For treason is but trusted like the fox,
    Who, ne'er so tame, so cherish'd and lock'd up, 2780
    Will have a wild trick of his ancestors.
    Look how we can, or sad or merrily,
    Interpretation will misquote our looks,
    And we shall feed like oxen at a stall,
    The better cherish'd, still the nearer death. 2785
    My nephew's trespass may be well forgot;
    it hath the excuse of youth and heat of blood,
    And an adopted name of privilege,
    A hair-brain'd Hotspur, govern'd by a spleen:
    All his offences live upon my head 2790
    And on his father's; we did train him on,
    And, his corruption being ta'en from us,
    We, as the spring of all, shall pay for all.
    Therefore, good cousin, let not Harry know,
    In any case, the offer of the king. 2795
  • Vernon. Deliver what you will; I'll say 'tis so.
    Here comes your cousin.



  • Earl of Worcester. I told him gently of our grievances,
    Of his oath-breaking; which he mended thus, 2810
    By now forswearing that he is forsworn:
    He calls us rebels, traitors; and will scourge
    With haughty arms this hateful name in us.

[Re-enter the EARL OF DOUGLAS]

  • Earl of Douglas. Arm, gentlemen; to arms! for I have thrown 2815
    A brave defiance in King Henry's teeth,
    And Westmoreland, that was engaged, did bear it;
    Which cannot choose but bring him quickly on.
  • Earl of Worcester. The Prince of Wales stepp'd forth before the king,
    And, nephew, challenged you to single fight. 2820
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). O, would the quarrel lay upon our heads,
    And that no man might draw short breath today
    But I and Harry Monmouth! Tell me, tell me,
    How show'd his tasking? seem'd it in contempt?
  • Vernon. No, by my soul; I never in my life 2825
    Did hear a challenge urged more modestly,
    Unless a brother should a brother dare
    To gentle exercise and proof of arms.
    He gave you all the duties of a man;
    Trimm'd up your praises with a princely tongue, 2830
    Spoke to your deservings like a chronicle,
    Making you ever better than his praise
    By still dispraising praise valued in you;
    And, which became him like a prince indeed,
    He made a blushing cital of himself; 2835
    And chid his truant youth with such a grace
    As if he master'd there a double spirit.
    Of teaching and of learning instantly.
    There did he pause: but let me tell the world,
    If he outlive the envy of this day, 2840
    England did never owe so sweet a hope,
    So much misconstrued in his wantonness.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Cousin, I think thou art enamoured
    On his follies: never did I hear
    Of any prince so wild a libertine. 2845
    But be he as he will, yet once ere night
    I will embrace him with a soldier's arm,
    That he shall shrink under my courtesy.
    Arm, arm with speed: and, fellows, soldiers, friends,
    Better consider what you have to do 2850
    Than I, that have not well the gift of tongue,
    Can lift your blood up with persuasion.

[Enter a Messenger]

  • Messenger. My lord, here are letters for you.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). I cannot read them now. 2855
    O gentlemen, the time of life is short!
    To spend that shortness basely were too long,
    If life did ride upon a dial's point,
    Still ending at the arrival of an hour.
    An if we live, we live to tread on kings; 2860
    If die, brave death, when princes die with us!
    Now, for our consciences, the arms are fair,
    When the intent of bearing them is just.

[Enter another Messenger]

  • Messenger. My lord, prepare; the king comes on apace. 2865
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). I thank him, that he cuts me from my tale,
    For I profess not talking; only this—
    Let each man do his best: and here draw I
    A sword, whose temper I intend to stain
    With the best blood that I can meet withal 2870
    In the adventure of this perilous day.
    Now, Esperance! Percy! and set on.
    Sound all the lofty instruments of war,
    And by that music let us all embrace;
    For, heaven to earth, some of us never shall 2875
    A second time do such a courtesy.

[The trumpets sound. They embrace, and exeunt]

. previous scene      

Act V, Scene 3

Plain between the camps.

      next scene .

[KING HENRY enters with his power. Alarum to the battle. Then enter DOUGLAS and SIR WALTER BLUNT]

  • Blunt. What is thy name, that in the battle thus
    Thou crossest me? what honour dost thou seek 2880
    Upon my head?
  • Earl of Douglas. Know then, my name is Douglas;
    And I do haunt thee in the battle thus
    Because some tell me that thou art a king.
  • Blunt. They tell thee true. 2885
  • Earl of Douglas. The Lord of Stafford dear to-day hath bought
    Thy likeness, for instead of thee, King Harry,
    This sword hath ended him: so shall it thee,
    Unless thou yield thee as my prisoner.
  • Blunt. I was not born a yielder, thou proud Scot; 2890
    And thou shalt find a king that will revenge
    Lord Stafford's death.

[They fight. DOUGLAS kills SIR WALTER BLUNT.


  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). O Douglas, hadst thou fought at Holmedon thus, 2895
    never had triumph'd upon a Scot.
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). This, Douglas? no: I know this face full well: 2900
    A gallant knight he was, his name was Blunt;
    Semblably furnish'd like the king himself.
  • Earl of Douglas. A fool go with thy soul, whither it goes!
    A borrow'd title hast thou bought too dear:
    Why didst thou tell me that thou wert a king? 2905
  • Earl of Douglas. Now, by my sword, I will kill all his coats;
    I'll murder all his wardrobe, piece by piece,
    Until I meet the king.


[Alarum. Enter FALSTAFF, solus]

  • Falstaff. Though I could 'scape shot-free at London, I fear
    the shot here; here's no scoring but upon the pate. 2915
    Soft! who are you? Sir Walter Blunt: there's honour
    for you! here's no vanity! I am as hot as moulten
    lead, and as heavy too: God keep lead out of me! I
    need no more weight than mine own bowels. I have
    led my ragamuffins where they are peppered: there's 2920
    not three of my hundred and fifty left alive; and
    they are for the town's end, to beg during life.
    But who comes here?


  • Henry V. What, stand'st thou idle here? lend me thy sword: 2925
    Many a nobleman lies stark and stiff
    Under the hoofs of vaunting enemies,
    Whose deaths are yet unrevenged: I prithee,
    lend me thy sword.
  • Falstaff. O Hal, I prithee, give me leave to breathe awhile. 2930
    Turk Gregory never did such deeds in arms as I have
    done this day. I have paid Percy, I have made him sure.
  • Henry V. He is, indeed; and living to kill thee. I prithee,
    lend me thy sword.
  • Falstaff. Nay, before God, Hal, if Percy be alive, thou get'st 2935
    not my sword; but take my pistol, if thou wilt.
  • Henry V. Give it to me: what, is it in the case?
  • Falstaff. Ay, Hal; 'tis hot, 'tis hot; there's that will sack a city.

[PRINCE HENRY draws it out, and finds it to be a bottle of sack]

  • Henry V. What, is it a time to jest and dally now? 2940

[He throws the bottle at him. Exit]

  • Falstaff. Well, if Percy be alive, I'll pierce him. If he do
    come in my way, so: if he do not, if I come in his
    willingly, let him make a carbonado of me. I like
    not such grinning honour as Sir Walter hath: give me 2945
    life: which if I can save, so; if not, honour comes
    unlooked for, and there's an end.


. previous scene      

Act V, Scene 4

Another part of the field.

      next scene .


  • Henry IV. I prithee, 2950
    Harry, withdraw thyself; thou bleed'st too much.
    Lord John of Lancaster, go you with him.
  • Henry V. I beseech your majesty, make up,
    Lest your retirement do amaze your friends. 2955
  • Henry IV. I will do so.
    My Lord of Westmoreland, lead him to his tent.
  • Henry V. Lead me, my lord? I do not need your help:
    And God forbid a shallow scratch should drive 2960
    The Prince of Wales from such a field as this,
    Where stain'd nobility lies trodden on,
    and rebels' arms triumph in massacres!
  • Prince John. We breathe too long: come, cousin Westmoreland,
    Our duty this way lies; for God's sake come. 2965


  • Henry V. By God, thou hast deceived me, Lancaster;
    I did not think thee lord of such a spirit:
    Before, I loved thee as a brother, John;
    But now, I do respect thee as my soul. 2970
  • Henry IV. I saw him hold Lord Percy at the point
    With lustier maintenance than I did look for
    Of such an ungrown warrior.
  • Henry V. O, this boy
    Lends mettle to us all! 2975



  • Earl of Douglas. Another king! they grow like Hydra's heads:
    I am the Douglas, fatal to all those
    That wear those colours on them: what art thou, 2980
    That counterfeit'st the person of a king?
  • Henry IV. The king himself; who, Douglas, grieves at heart
    So many of his shadows thou hast met
    And not the very king. I have two boys
    Seek Percy and thyself about the field: 2985
    But, seeing thou fall'st on me so luckily,
    I will assay thee: so, defend thyself.
  • Earl of Douglas. I fear thou art another counterfeit;
    And yet, in faith, thou bear'st thee like a king:
    But mine I am sure thou art, whoe'er thou be, 2990
    And thus I win thee.

[They fight. KING HENRY being in danger, PRINCE HENRY enters]

  • Henry V. Hold up thy head, vile Scot, or thou art like
    Never to hold it up again! the spirits
    Of valiant Shirley, Stafford, Blunt, are in my arms: 2995
    It is the Prince of Wales that threatens thee;
    Who never promiseth but he means to pay.
    [They fight: DOUGLAS flies]
    Cheerly, my lord. how fares your grace?
    Sir Nicholas Gawsey hath for succor sent, 3000
    And so hath Clifton: I'll to Clifton straight.
  • Henry IV. Stay, and breathe awhile:
    Thou hast redeem'd thy lost opinion,
    And show'd thou makest some tender of my life,
    In this fair rescue thou hast brought to me. 3005
  • Henry V. O God! they did me too much injury
    That ever said I hearken'd for your death.
    If it were so, I might have let alone
    The insulting hand of Douglas over you,
    Which would have been as speedy in your end 3010
    As all the poisonous potions in the world
    And saved the treacherous labour of your son.
  • Henry IV. Make up to Clifton: I'll to Sir Nicholas Gawsey.



  • Henry V. Thou speak'st as if I would deny my name.
  • Henry V. Why, then I see
    A very valiant rebel of the name. 3020
    I am the Prince of Wales; and think not, Percy,
    To share with me in glory any more:
    Two stars keep not their motion in one sphere;
    Nor can one England brook a double reign,
    Of Harry Percy and the Prince of Wales. 3025
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). Nor shall it, Harry; for the hour is come
    To end the one of us; and would to God
    Thy name in arms were now as great as mine!
  • Henry V. I'll make it greater ere I part from thee;
    And all the budding honours on thy crest 3030
    I'll crop, to make a garland for my head.

[They fight]


  • Falstaff. Well said, Hal! to it Hal! Nay, you shall find no 3035
    boy's play here, I can tell you.
    [Re-enter DOUGLAS; he fights with FALSTAFF,]
    who falls down as if he were dead, and exit
    DOUGLAS. HOTSPUR is wounded, and falls]
  • Hotspur (Henry Percy). O, Harry, thou hast robb'd me of my youth! 3040
    I better brook the loss of brittle life
    Than those proud titles thou hast won of me;
    They wound my thoughts worse than sword my flesh:
    But thought's the slave of life, and life time's fool;
    And time, that takes survey of all the world, 3045
    Must have a stop. O, I could prophesy,
    But that the earthy and cold hand of death
    Lies on my tongue: no, Percy, thou art dust
    And food for—


  • Henry V. For worms, brave Percy: fare thee well, great heart!
    Ill-weaved ambition, how much art thou shrunk!
    When that this body did contain a spirit,
    A kingdom for it was too small a bound;
    But now two paces of the vilest earth 3055
    Is room enough: this earth that bears thee dead
    Bears not alive so stout a gentleman.
    If thou wert sensible of courtesy,
    I should not make so dear a show of zeal:
    But let my favours hide thy mangled face; 3060
    And, even in thy behalf, I'll thank myself
    For doing these fair rites of tenderness.
    Adieu, and take thy praise with thee to heaven!
    Thy ignominy sleep with thee in the grave,
    But not remember'd in thy epitaph! 3065
    [He spieth FALSTAFF on the ground]
    What, old acquaintance! could not all this flesh
    Keep in a little life? Poor Jack, farewell!
    I could have better spared a better man:
    O, I should have a heavy miss of thee, 3070
    If I were much in love with vanity!
    Death hath not struck so fat a deer to-day,
    Though many dearer, in this bloody fray.
    Embowell'd will I see thee by and by:
    Till then in blood by noble Percy lie. 3075


  • Falstaff. [Rising up] Embowelled! if thou embowel me to-day,
    I'll give you leave to powder me and eat me too
    to-morrow. 'Sblood,'twas time to counterfeit, or
    that hot termagant Scot had paid me scot and lot too. 3080
    Counterfeit? I lie, I am no counterfeit: to die,
    is to be a counterfeit; for he is but the
    counterfeit of a man who hath not the life of a man:
    but to counterfeit dying, when a man thereby
    liveth, is to be no counterfeit, but the true and 3085
    perfect image of life indeed. The better part of
    valour is discretion; in the which better part I
    have saved my life.'Zounds, I am afraid of this
    gunpowder Percy, though he be dead: how, if he
    should counterfeit too and rise? by my faith, I am 3090
    afraid he would prove the better counterfeit.
    Therefore I'll make him sure; yea, and I'll swear I
    killed him. Why may not he rise as well as I?
    Nothing confutes me but eyes, and nobody sees me.
    Therefore, sirrah, 3095
    [Stabbing him]
    with a new wound in your thigh, come you along with me.

[Takes up HOTSPUR on his back]


  • Henry V. Come, brother John; full bravely hast thou flesh'd 3100
    Thy maiden sword.
  • Prince John. But, soft! whom have we here?
    Did you not tell me this fat man was dead?
  • Henry V. I did; I saw him dead,
    Breathless and bleeding on the ground. Art 3105
    thou alive?
    Or is it fantasy that plays upon our eyesight?
    I prithee, speak; we will not trust our eyes
    Without our ears: thou art not what thou seem'st.
  • Falstaff. No, that's certain; I am not a double man: but if I 3110
    be not Jack Falstaff, then am I a Jack. There is Percy:
    [Throwing the body down]
    if your father will do me any honour, so; if not, let
    him kill the next Percy himself. I look to be either
    earl or duke, I can assure you. 3115
  • Henry V. Why, Percy I killed myself and saw thee dead.
  • Falstaff. Didst thou? Lord, Lord, how this world is given to
    lying! I grant you I was down and out of breath;
    and so was he: but we rose both at an instant and
    fought a long hour by Shrewsbury clock. If I may be 3120
    believed, so; if not, let them that should reward
    valour bear the sin upon their own heads. I'll take
    it upon my death, I gave him this wound in the
    thigh: if the man were alive and would deny it,
    'zounds, I would make him eat a piece of my sword. 3125
  • Prince John. This is the strangest tale that ever I heard.
  • Henry V. This is the strangest fellow, brother John.
    Come, bring your luggage nobly on your back:
    For my part, if a lie may do thee grace,
    I'll gild it with the happiest terms I have. 3130
    [A retreat is sounded]
    The trumpet sounds retreat; the day is ours.
    Come, brother, let us to the highest of the field,
    To see what friends are living, who are dead.


  • Falstaff. I'll follow, as they say, for reward. He that
    rewards me, God reward him! If I do grow great,
    I'll grow less; for I'll purge, and leave sack, and
    live cleanly as a nobleman should do.


. previous scene      

Act V, Scene 5

Another part of the field.



  • Henry IV. Thus ever did rebellion find rebuke.
    Ill-spirited Worcester! did not we send grace,
    Pardon and terms of love to all of you?
    And wouldst thou turn our offers contrary? 3145
    Misuse the tenor of thy kinsman's trust?
    Three knights upon our party slain to-day,
    A noble earl and many a creature else
    Had been alive this hour,
    If like a Christian thou hadst truly borne 3150
    Betwixt our armies true intelligence.
  • Earl of Worcester. What I have done my safety urged me to;
    And I embrace this fortune patiently,
    Since not to be avoided it falls on me.
  • Henry IV. Bear Worcester to the death and Vernon too: 3155
    Other offenders we will pause upon.
    [Exeunt WORCESTER and VERNON, guarded]
    How goes the field?
  • Henry V. The noble Scot, Lord Douglas, when he saw
    The fortune of the day quite turn'd from him, 3160
    The noble Percy slain, and all his men
    Upon the foot of fear, fled with the rest;
    And falling from a hill, he was so bruised
    That the pursuers took him. At my tent
    The Douglas is; and I beseech your grace 3165
    I may dispose of him.
  • Henry V. Then, brother John of Lancaster, to you
    This honourable bounty shall belong:
    Go to the Douglas, and deliver him 3170
    Up to his pleasure, ransomless and free:
    His valour shown upon our crests to-day
    Hath taught us how to cherish such high deeds
    Even in the bosom of our adversaries.
  • Prince John. I thank your grace for this high courtesy, 3175
    Which I shall give away immediately.
  • Henry IV. Then this remains, that we divide our power.
    You, son John, and my cousin Westmoreland
    Towards York shall bend you with your dearest speed,
    To meet Northumberland and the prelate Scroop, 3180
    Who, as we hear, are busily in arms:
    Myself and you, son Harry, will towards Wales,
    To fight with Glendower and the Earl of March.
    Rebellion in this land shall lose his sway,
    Meeting the cheque of such another day: 3185
    And since this business so fair is done,
    Let us not leave till all our own be won.