KING HENRY IV - THE FIRST PART
KING HENRY IV - THE FIRST PART
by William Shakespeare
King Henry the Fourth.
Henry Prince of Wales son to the King.
Prince John of Lancaster son to the King.
Earl of Westmoreland.
Sir Walter Blunt.
Thomas Percy Earl of Worcester.
Henry Percy Earl of Northumberland.
Henry Percy his son.
Edmund Mortimer Earl of March.
Scroop Archbishop of York.
Sir Michael his Friend.
Archibald Earl of Douglas.
Sir Richard Vernon.
Sir John Falstaff.
Lady Percy Wife to Hotspur.
Lady Mortimer Daughter to Glendower.
Mrs. Quickly Hostess in Eastcheap.
Lords Officers Sheriff Vintner Chamberlain Drawers
Carriers Travellers and Attendants.
SCENE I. London. A Room in the Palace.
[Enter the King Henry Westmoreland Sir Walter Blunt and
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.
No more the thirsty entrance of this soil
Shall daub her lips with her own children's blood;
No more shall trenching war channel her fields
Nor bruise her flowerets with the armed hoofs
Of hostile paces: those opposed eyes
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
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--
Whose soldier now under whose blessed cross
We are impressed and engaged to fight--
Forthwith a power of English shall we levy
To chase these pagans in those holy fields
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 twelvemonth old
And bootless 'tis to tell you we will go:
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.
My liege this haste was hot in question
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
Against th' 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
By those Welshwomen done as may not be
Without much shame re-told or spoken of.
It seems then that the tidings of this broil
Brake off our business for the Holy Land.
This match'd with other did my gracious lord;
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
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
And pride of their contention did take horse
Uncertain of the issue any way.
Here is a dear and true-industrious friend
Sir Walter Blunt new lighted from his horse
Stain'd with the variation of each soil
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
On Holmedon's plains: of prisoners Hotspur took
Mordake the Earl of Fife and eldest son
To beaten Douglas; and the Earls of Athol
Of Murray Angus and Menteith.
And is not this an honourable spoil
A gallant prize? ha cousin is it not?
Faith 'tis a conquest for a prince to boast of.
Yea there thou makest me sad and makest me sin
In envy that my Lord Northumberland
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
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!
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
I shall have none but Mordake Earl of Fife.
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.
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:
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.
I will my liege.
Scene II. The same. An Apartment of Prince Henry's.
[Enter Prince Henry and Falstaff.]
Now Hal what time of day is it lad?
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 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 the blessed Sun himself 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.
Indeed you come near me now Hal; for we that take purses go
by the Moon and the seven stars and not by Phoebus--he that
wandering knight so fair. And I pr'ythee sweet wag when thou
art king--as God save thy Grace--Majesty I should say for
thou wilt have none--