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History of Henry IV, Part II

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Act V, Scene 5

Westminster. Near the Abbey


Enter GROOMS, strewing rushes

  • Third Groom. 'Twill be two o'clock ere they come from the 3590
    coronation. Dispatch, dispatch. Exeunt

Trumpets sound, and the KING and his train pass over the stage. After them enter FALSTAFF, SHALLOW, PISTOL, BARDOLPH, and page

  • Falstaff. Stand here by me, Master Robert Shallow; I will make the
    King do you grace. I will leer upon him, as 'a comes by; and do
    but mark the countenance that he will give me. 3595
  • Pistol. God bless thy lungs, good knight!
  • Falstaff. Come here, Pistol; stand behind me. [To SHALLOW] O, if
    I had had to have made new liveries, I would have bestowed the
    thousand pound I borrowed of you. But 'tis no matter; this poor
    show doth better; this doth infer the zeal I had to see him. 3600
  • Falstaff. It shows my earnestness of affection-
  • Falstaff. As it were, to ride day and night; and not to
    not to remember, not to have patience to shift me—
  • Falstaff. But to stand stained with travel, and sweating with 3610
    desire to see him; thinking of nothing else, putting all
    else in oblivion, as if there were nothing else to be done
    see him.
  • Pistol. 'Tis 'semper idem' for 'obsque hoc nihil est.' 'Tis all
    every part.
  • Pistol. My knight, I will inflame thy noble liver 3620
    And make thee rage.
    Thy Doll, and Helen of thy noble thoughts,
    Is in base durance and contagious prison;
    Hal'd thither
    By most mechanical and dirty hand. 3625
    Rouse up revenge from ebon den with fell Alecto's snake,
    For Doll is in. Pistol speaks nought but truth.

[Shouts,within, and the trumpets sound]

  • Pistol. There roar'd the sea, and trumpet-clangor sounds. 3630

Enter the KING and his train, the LORD CHIEF JUSTICE among them

  • Falstaff. God save thy Grace, King Hal; my royal Hal!
  • Pistol. The heavens thee guard and keep, most royal imp of
  • Falstaff. God save thee, my sweet boy! 3635
  • Henry V. My Lord Chief Justice, speak to that vain man.
  • Falstaff. My king! my Jove! I speak to thee, my heart!
  • Henry V. I know thee not, old man. Fall to thy prayers. 3640
    How ill white hairs become a fool and jester!
    I have long dreamt of such a kind of man,
    So surfeit-swell'd, so old, and so profane;
    But being awak'd, I do despise my dream.
    Make less thy body hence, and more thy grace; 3645
    Leave gormandizing; know the grave doth gape
    For thee thrice wider than for other men—
    Reply not to me with a fool-born jest;
    Presume not that I am the thing I was,
    For God doth know, so shall the world perceive, 3650
    That I have turn'd away my former self;
    So will I those that kept me company.
    When thou dost hear I am as I have been,
    Approach me, and thou shalt be as thou wast,
    The tutor and the feeder of my riots. 3655
    Till then I banish thee, on pain of death,
    As I have done the rest of my misleaders,
    Not to come near our person by ten mile.
    For competence of life I will allow you,
    That lack of means enforce you not to evils; 3660
    And, as we hear you do reform yourselves,
    We will, according to your strengths and qualities,
    Give you advancement. Be it your charge, my lord,
    To see perform'd the tenour of our word.
    Set on. Exeunt the KING and his train 3665
  • Falstaff. Master Shallow, I owe you a thousand pounds.
  • Robert Shallow. Yea, marry, Sir John; which I beseech you to let me
    home with me.
  • Falstaff. That can hardly be, Master Shallow. Do not you grieve 3670
    this; I shall be sent for in private to him. Look you, he
    seem thus to the world. Fear not your advancements; I will be
    man yet that shall make you great.
  • Robert Shallow. I cannot perceive how, unless you give me your
    and stuff me out with straw. I beseech you, good Sir John,
    have five hundred of my thousand.
  • Falstaff. Sir, I will be as good as my word. This that you
    was but a colour.
  • Falstaff. Fear no colours; go with me to dinner. Come,
    Pistol; come, Bardolph. I shall be sent for soon at night.

Re-enter PRINCE JOHN, the LORD CHIEF JUSTICE, with officers

  • Lord Chief Justice. Go, carry Sir John Falstaff to the Fleet; 3690
    Take all his company along with him.
  • Pistol. Si fortuna me tormenta, spero me contenta. 3695


  • Prince John. I like this fair proceeding of the King's.
    He hath intent his wonted followers
    Shall all be very well provided for;
    But all are banish'd till their conversations 3700
    Appear more wise and modest to the world.
  • Prince John. The King hath call'd his parliament, my lord.
  • Prince John. I will lay odds that, ere this year expire, 3705
    We bear our civil swords and native fire
    As far as France. I heard a bird so sing,
    Whose music, to my thinking, pleas'd the King.
    Come, will you hence? Exeunt


  • Dancer. First my fear, then my curtsy, last my speech. My fear, is your
    displeasure; my curtsy, my duty; and my speech, to beg your pardons.
    If you look for a good speech now, you undo me; for what I have
    to say is of mine own making; and what, indeed, I should say will, I doubt,
    prove mine own marring. But to the purpose, and so to the 3715

    Be it known to you, as it is very well, I was lately here in the
    end of a displeasing play, to pray your patience for it and to
    promise you a better. I meant, indeed, to pay you with this; which if like an 3720
    ill venture it come unluckily home, I break, and you, my gentle
    creditors, lose. Here I promis'd you I would be, and here I
    commit my body to your mercies. Bate me some, and I will pay you some,
    and, as most debtors do, promise you infinitely; and so I kneel down
    before you—but, indeed, to pray for the Queen. 3725

    If my tongue cannot entreat you to acquit me, will you command
    me to use my legs? And yet that were but light payment—to dance out of
    your debt. But a good conscience will make any possible
    satisfaction, and so would I. All the gentlewomen here have 3730
    forgiven me. If the gentlemen will not, then the gentlemen do not agree
    with the gentlewomen, which was never seen before in such an assembly.

    One word more, I beseech you. If you be not too much cloy'd
    with fat meat, our humble author will continue the story, with Sir John in 3735
    it, and make you merry with fair Katherine of France; where, for
    anything I know, Falstaff shall die of a sweat, unless already 'a
    be killed with your hard opinions; for Oldcastle died a martyr and
    this is not the man. My tongue is weary; when my legs are too, I will
    bid you good night. 3740