|Chorus||Thus with imagined wing our swift scene flies
In motion of no less celerity
Than that of thought. Suppose that you have seen
The well-appointed king at Hampton pier
Embark his royalty; and his brave fleet
With silken streamers the young Phoebus fanning:
Play with your fancies, and in them behold
Upon the hempen tackle ship-boys climbing;
Hear the shrill whistle which doth order give
To sounds confused; behold the threaden sails,
Borne with the invisible and creeping wind,
Draw the huge bottoms through the furrow'd sea,
Breasting the lofty surge: O, do but think
You stand upon the ravage and behold
A city on the inconstant billows dancing;
For so appears this fleet majestical,
Holding due course to Harfleur. Follow, follow:
Grapple your minds to sternage of this navy,
And leave your England, as dead midnight still,
Guarded with grandsires, babies and old women,
Either past or not arrived to pith and puissance;
For who is he, whose chin is but enrich'd
With one appearing hair, that will not follow
These cull'd and choice-drawn cavaliers to France?
Work, work your thoughts, and therein see a siege;
Behold the ordnance on their carriages,
With fatal mouths gaping on girded Harfleur.
Suppose the ambassador from the French comes back;
Tells Harry that the king doth offer him
Katharine his daughter, and with her, to dowry,
Some petty and unprofitable dukedoms.
The offer likes not: and the nimble gunner
With linstock now the devilish cannon touches,
|[Alarum, and chambers go off]|
|And down goes all before them. Still be kind,
And eke out our performance with your mind.
|[Alarum. Enter KING HENRY, EXETER, BEDFORD,
GLOUCESTER, and Soldiers, with scaling-ladders]
|KING HENRY V||Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more;
Or close the wall up with our English dead.
In peace there's nothing so becomes a man
As modest stillness and humility:
But when the blast of war blows in our ears,
Then imitate the action of the tiger;
Stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood,
Disguise fair nature with hard-favour'd rage;
Then lend the eye a terrible aspect;
Let pry through the portage of the head
Like the brass cannon; let the brow o'erwhelm it
As fearfully as doth a galled rock
O'erhang and jutty his confounded base,
Swill'd with the wild and wasteful ocean.
Now set the teeth and stretch the nostril wide,
Hold hard the breath and bend up every spirit
To his full height. On, on, you noblest English.
Whose blood is fet from fathers of war-proof!
Fathers that, like so many Alexanders,
Have in these parts from morn till even fought
And sheathed their swords for lack of argument:
Dishonour not your mothers; now attest
That those whom you call'd fathers did beget you.
Be copy now to men of grosser blood,
And teach them how to war. And you, good yeoman,
Whose limbs were made in England, show us here
The mettle of your pasture; let us swear
That you are worth your breeding; which I doubt not;
For there is none of you so mean and base,
That hath not noble lustre in your eyes.
I see you stand like greyhounds in the slips,
Straining upon the start. The game's afoot:
Follow your spirit, and upon this charge
Cry 'God for Harry, England, and Saint George!'
|[Exeunt. Alarum, and chambers go off]|
|[Enter NYM, BARDOLPH, PISTOL, and Boy]|
|BARDOLPH||On, on, on, on, on! to the breach, to the breach!|
|NYM||Pray thee, corporal, stay: the knocks are too hot;
and, for mine own part, I have not a case of lives:
the humour of it is too hot, that is the very
plain-song of it.
|PISTOL||The plain-song is most just: for humours do abound:
Knocks go and come; God's vassals drop and die;
And sword and shield,
In bloody field,
Doth win immortal fame.
|Boy||Would I were in an alehouse in London! I would give
all my fame for a pot of ale and safety.
If wishes would prevail with me,
My purpose should not fail with me,
But thither would I hie.
|Boy||As duly, but not as truly,
As bird doth sing on bough.
|FLUELLEN||Up to the breach, you dogs! avaunt, you cullions!|
|[Driving them forward]|
|PISTOL||Be merciful, great duke, to men of mould.
Abate thy rage, abate thy manly rage,
Abate thy rage, great duke!
Good bawcock, bate thy rage; use lenity, sweet chuck!
|NYM||These be good humours! your honour wins bad humours.|
|[Exeunt all but Boy]|
|Boy||As young as I am, I have observed these three
swashers. I am boy to them all three: but all they
three, though they would serve me, could not be man
to me; for indeed three such antics do not amount to
a man. For Bardolph, he is white-livered and
red-faced; by the means whereof a' faces it out, but
fights not. For Pistol, he hath a killing tongue
and a quiet sword; by the means whereof a' breaks
words, and keeps whole weapons. For Nym, he hath
heard that men of few words are the best men; and
therefore he scorns to say his prayers, lest a'
should be thought a coward: but his few bad words
are matched with as few good deeds; for a' never
broke any man's head but his own, and that was
against a post when he was drunk. They will steal
any thing, and call it purchase. Bardolph stole a
lute-case, bore it twelve leagues, and sold it for
three half pence. Nym and Bardolph are sworn
brothers in filching, and in Calais they stole a
fire-shovel: I knew by that piece of service the
men would carry coals. They would have me as
familiar with men's pockets as their gloves or their
handkerchers: which makes much against my manhood,
if I should take from another's pocket to put into
mine; for it is plain pocketing up of wrongs. I
must leave them, and seek some better service:
their villany goes against my weak stomach, and
therefore I must cast it up.
|[Re-enter FLUELLEN, GOWER following]|
|GOWER||Captain Fluellen, you must come presently to the
mines; the Duke of Gloucester would speak with you.
|FLUELLEN||To the mines! tell you the duke, it is not so good
to come to the mines; for, look you, the mines is
not according to the disciplines of the war: the
concavities of it is not sufficient; for, look you,
the athversary, you may discuss unto the duke, look
you, is digt himself four yard under the
countermines: by Cheshu, I think a' will plough up
all, if there is not better directions.
|GOWER||The Duke of Gloucester, to whom the order of the
siege is given, is altogether directed by an
Irishman, a very valiant gentleman, i' faith.
|FLUELLEN||It is Captain Macmorris, is it not?|
|GOWER||I think it be.|
|FLUELLEN||By Cheshu, he is an ass, as in the world: I will
verify as much in his beard: be has no more
directions in the true disciplines of the wars, look
you, of the Roman disciplines, than is a puppy-dog.
|[Enter MACMORRIS and Captain JAMY]|
|GOWER||Here a' comes; and the Scots captain, Captain Jamy, with him.|
|FLUELLEN||Captain Jamy is a marvellous falourous gentleman,
that is certain; and of great expedition and
knowledge in th' aunchient wars, upon my particular
knowledge of his directions: by Cheshu, he will
maintain his argument as well as any military man in
the world, in the disciplines of the pristine wars
of the Romans.
|JAMY||I say gud-day, Captain Fluellen.|
|FLUELLEN||God-den to your worship, good Captain James.|
|GOWER||How now, Captain Macmorris! have you quit the
mines? have the pioneers given o'er?
|MACMORRIS||By Chrish, la! tish ill done: the work ish give
over, the trompet sound the retreat. By my hand, I
swear, and my father's soul, the work ish ill done;
it ish give over: I would have blowed up the town, so
Chrish save me, la! in an hour: O, tish ill done,
tish ill done; by my hand, tish ill done!
|FLUELLEN||Captain Macmorris, I beseech you now, will you
voutsafe me, look you, a few disputations with you,
as partly touching or concerning the disciplines of
the war, the Roman wars, in the way of argument,
look you, and friendly communication; partly to
satisfy my opinion, and partly for the satisfaction,
look you, of my mind, as touching the direction of
the military discipline; that is the point.
|JAMY||It sall be vary gud, gud feith, gud captains bath:
and I sall quit you with gud leve, as I may pick
occasion; that sall I, marry.
|MACMORRIS||It is no time to discourse, so Chrish save me: the
day is hot, and the weather, and the wars, and the
king, and the dukes: it is no time to discourse. The
town is beseeched, and the trumpet call us to the
breach; and we talk, and, be Chrish, do nothing:
'tis shame for us all: so God sa' me, 'tis shame to
stand still; it is shame, by my hand: and there is
throats to be cut, and works to be done; and there
ish nothing done, so Chrish sa' me, la!
|JAMY||By the mess, ere theise eyes of mine take themselves
to slomber, ay'll de gud service, or ay'll lig i'
the grund for it; ay, or go to death; and ay'll pay
't as valourously as I may, that sall I suerly do,
that is the breff and the long. Marry, I wad full
fain hear some question 'tween you tway.
|FLUELLEN||Captain Macmorris, I think, look you, under your
correction, there is not many of your nation--
|MACMORRIS||Of my nation! What ish my nation? Ish a villain,
and a bastard, and a knave, and a rascal. What ish
my nation? Who talks of my nation?
|FLUELLEN||Look you, if you take the matter otherwise than is
meant, Captain Macmorris, peradventure I shall think
you do not use me with that affability as in
discretion you ought to use me, look you: being as
good a man as yourself, both in the disciplines of
war, and in the derivation of my birth, and in
|MACMORRIS||I do not know you so good a man as myself: so
Chrish save me, I will cut off your head.
|GOWER||Gentlemen both, you will mistake each other.|
|JAMY||A! that's a foul fault.|
|[A parley sounded]|
|GOWER||The town sounds a parley.|
|FLUELLEN||Captain Macmorris, when there is more better
opportunity to be required, look you, I will be so
bold as to tell you I know the disciplines of war;
and there is an end.
|[The Governor and some Citizens on the walls; the
English forces below. Enter KING HENRY and his train]
|KING HENRY V||How yet resolves the governor of the town?
This is the latest parle we will admit;
Therefore to our best mercy give yourselves;
Or like to men proud of destruction
Defy us to our worst: for, as I am a soldier,
A name that in my thoughts becomes me best,
If I begin the battery once again,
I will not leave the half-achieved Harfleur
Till in her ashes she lie buried.
The gates of mercy shall be all shut up,
And the flesh'd soldier, rough and hard of heart,
In liberty of bloody hand shall range
With conscience wide as hell, mowing like grass
Your fresh-fair virgins and your flowering infants.
What is it then to me, if impious war,
Array'd in flames like to the prince of fiends,
Do, with his smirch'd complexion, all fell feats
Enlink'd to waste and desolation?
What is't to me, when you yourselves are cause,
If your pure maidens fall into the hand
Of hot and forcing violation?
What rein can hold licentious wickedness
When down the hill he holds his fierce career?
We may as bootless spend our vain command
Upon the enraged soldiers in their spoil
As send precepts to the leviathan
To come ashore. Therefore, you men of Harfleur,
Take pity of your town and of your people,
Whiles yet my soldiers are in my command;
Whiles yet the cool and temperate wind of grace
O'erblows the filthy and contagious clouds
Of heady murder, spoil and villany.
If not, why, in a moment look to see
The blind and bloody soldier with foul hand
Defile the locks of your shrill-shrieking daughters;
Your fathers taken by the silver beards,
And their most reverend heads dash'd to the walls,
Your naked infants spitted upon pikes,
Whiles the mad mothers with their howls confused
Do break the clouds, as did the wives of Jewry
At Herod's bloody-hunting slaughtermen.
What say you? will you yield, and this avoid,
Or, guilty in defence, be thus destroy'd?
|GOVERNOR||Our expectation hath this day an end:
The Dauphin, whom of succors we entreated,
Returns us that his powers are yet not ready
To raise so great a siege. Therefore, great king,
We yield our town and lives to thy soft mercy.
Enter our gates; dispose of us and ours;
For we no longer are defensible.
|KING HENRY V||Open your gates. Come, uncle Exeter,
Go you and enter Harfleur; there remain,
And fortify it strongly 'gainst the French:
Use mercy to them all. For us, dear uncle,
The winter coming on and sickness growing
Upon our soldiers, we will retire to Calais.
To-night in Harfleur we will be your guest;
To-morrow for the march are we addrest.
|[Flourish. The King and his train enter the town]|
|[Enter KATHARINE and ALICE]|
|KATHARINE||Alice, tu as ete en Angleterre, et tu parles bien le langage.|
|ALICE||Un peu, madame.|
|KATHARINE||Je te prie, m'enseignez: il faut que j'apprenne a
parler. Comment appelez-vous la main en Anglois?
|ALICE||La main? elle est appelee de hand.|
|KATHARINE||De hand. Et les doigts?|
|ALICE||Les doigts? ma foi, j'oublie les doigts; mais je me
souviendrai. Les doigts? je pense qu'ils sont
appeles de fingres; oui, de fingres.
|KATHARINE||La main, de hand; les doigts, de fingres. Je pense
que je suis le bon ecolier; j'ai gagne deux mots
d'Anglois vitement. Comment appelez-vous les ongles?
|ALICE||Les ongles? nous les appelons de nails.|
|KATHARINE||De nails. Ecoutez; dites-moi, si je parle bien: de
hand, de fingres, et de nails.
|ALICE||C'est bien dit, madame; il est fort bon Anglois.|
|KATHARINE||Dites-moi l'Anglois pour le bras.|
|ALICE||De arm, madame.|
|KATHARINE||Et le coude?|
|KATHARINE||De elbow. Je m'en fais la repetition de tous les
mots que vous m'avez appris des a present.
|ALICE||Il est trop difficile, madame, comme je pense.|
|KATHARINE||Excusez-moi, Alice; ecoutez: de hand, de fingres,
de nails, de arma, de bilbow.
|ALICE||De elbow, madame.|
|KATHARINE||O Seigneur Dieu, je m'en oublie! de elbow. Comment
appelez-vous le col?
|ALICE||De neck, madame.|
|KATHARINE||De nick. Et le menton?|
|KATHARINE||De sin. Le col, de nick; de menton, de sin.|
|ALICE||Oui. Sauf votre honneur, en verite, vous prononcez
les mots aussi droit que les natifs d'Angleterre.
|KATHARINE||Je ne doute point d'apprendre, par la grace de Dieu,
et en peu de temps.
|ALICE||N'avez vous pas deja oublie ce que je vous ai enseigne?|
|KATHARINE||Non, je reciterai a vous promptement: de hand, de
fingres, de mails--
|ALICE||De nails, madame.|
|KATHARINE||De nails, de arm, de ilbow.|
|ALICE||Sauf votre honneur, de elbow.|
|KATHARINE||Ainsi dis-je; de elbow, de nick, et de sin. Comment
appelez-vous le pied et la robe?
|ALICE||De foot, madame; et de coun.|
|KATHARINE||De foot et de coun! O Seigneur Dieu! ce sont mots
de son mauvais, corruptible, gros, et impudique, et
non pour les dames d'honneur d'user: je ne voudrais
prononcer ces mots devant les seigneurs de France
pour tout le monde. Foh! le foot et le coun!
Neanmoins, je reciterai une autre fois ma lecon
ensemble: de hand, de fingres, de nails, de arm, de
elbow, de nick, de sin, de foot, de coun.
|KATHARINE||C'est assez pour une fois: allons-nous a diner.|
|[Enter the KING OF FRANCE, the DAUPHIN, the DUKE oF
BOURBON, the Constable Of France, and others]
|KING OF FRANCE||'Tis certain he hath pass'd the river Somme.|
|Constable||And if he be not fought withal, my lord,
Let us not live in France; let us quit all
And give our vineyards to a barbarous people.
|DAUPHIN||O Dieu vivant! shall a few sprays of us,
The emptying of our fathers' luxury,
Our scions, put in wild and savage stock,
Spirt up so suddenly into the clouds,
And overlook their grafters?
|BOURBON||Normans, but bastard Normans, Norman bastards!
Mort de ma vie! if they march along
Unfought withal, but I will sell my dukedom,
To buy a slobbery and a dirty farm
In that nook-shotten isle of Albion.
|Constable||Dieu de batailles! where have they this mettle?
Is not their climate foggy, raw and dull,
On whom, as in despite, the sun looks pale,
Killing their fruit with frowns? Can sodden water,
A drench for sur-rein'd jades, their barley-broth,
Decoct their cold blood to such valiant heat?
And shall our quick blood, spirited with wine,
Seem frosty? O, for honour of our land,
Let us not hang like roping icicles
Upon our houses' thatch, whiles a more frosty people
Sweat drops of gallant youth in our rich fields!
Poor we may call them in their native lords.
|DAUPHIN||By faith and honour,
Our madams mock at us, and plainly say
Our mettle is bred out and they will give
Their bodies to the lust of English youth
To new-store France with bastard warriors.
|BOURBON||They bid us to the English dancing-schools,
And teach lavoltas high and swift corantos;
Saying our grace is only in our heels,
And that we are most lofty runaways.
|KING OF FRANCE||Where is Montjoy the herald? speed him hence:
Let him greet England with our sharp defiance.
Up, princes! and, with spirit of honour edged
More sharper than your swords, hie to the field:
Charles Delabreth, high constable of France;
You Dukes of Orleans, Bourbon, and of Berri,
Alencon, Brabant, Bar, and Burgundy;
Jaques Chatillon, Rambures, Vaudemont,
Beaumont, Grandpre, Roussi, and Fauconberg,
Foix, Lestrale, Bouciqualt, and Charolois;
High dukes, great princes, barons, lords and knights,
For your great seats now quit you of great shames.
Bar Harry England, that sweeps through our land
With pennons painted in the blood of Harfleur:
Rush on his host, as doth the melted snow
Upon the valleys, whose low vassal seat
The Alps doth spit and void his rheum upon:
Go down upon him, you have power enough,
And in a captive chariot into Rouen
Bring him our prisoner.
|Constable||This becomes the great.
Sorry am I his numbers are so few,
His soldiers sick and famish'd in their march,
For I am sure, when he shall see our army,
He'll drop his heart into the sink of fear
And for achievement offer us his ransom.
|KING OF FRANCE||Therefore, lord constable, haste on Montjoy.
And let him say to England that we send
To know what willing ransom he will give.
Prince Dauphin, you shall stay with us in Rouen.
|DAUPHIN||Not so, I do beseech your majesty.|
|KING OF FRANCE||Be patient, for you shall remain with us.
Now forth, lord constable and princes all,
And quickly bring us word of England's fall.
|[Enter GOWER and FLUELLEN, meeting]|
|GOWER||How now, Captain Fluellen! come you from the bridge?|
|FLUELLEN||I assure you, there is very excellent services
committed at the bridge.
|GOWER||Is the Duke of Exeter safe?|
|FLUELLEN||The Duke of Exeter is as magnanimous as Agamemnon;
and a man that I love and honour with my soul, and my
heart, and my duty, and my life, and my living, and
my uttermost power: he is not-God be praised and
blessed!--any hurt in the world; but keeps the
bridge most valiantly, with excellent discipline.
There is an aunchient lieutenant there at the
pridge, I think in my very conscience he is as
valiant a man as Mark Antony; and he is a man of no
estimation in the world; but did see him do as
|GOWER||What do you call him?|
|FLUELLEN||He is called Aunchient Pistol.|
|GOWER||I know him not.|
|FLUELLEN||Here is the man.|
|PISTOL||Captain, I thee beseech to do me favours:
The Duke of Exeter doth love thee well.
|FLUELLEN||Ay, I praise God; and I have merited some love at
|PISTOL||Bardolph, a soldier, firm and sound of heart,
And of buxom valour, hath, by cruel fate,
And giddy Fortune's furious fickle wheel,
That goddess blind,
That stands upon the rolling restless stone--
|FLUELLEN||By your patience, Aunchient Pistol. Fortune is
painted blind, with a muffler afore her eyes, to
signify to you that Fortune is blind; and she is
painted also with a wheel, to signify to you, which
is the moral of it, that she is turning, and
inconstant, and mutability, and variation: and her
foot, look you, is fixed upon a spherical stone,
which rolls, and rolls, and rolls: in good truth,
the poet makes a most excellent description of it:
Fortune is an excellent moral.
|PISTOL||Fortune is Bardolph's foe, and frowns on him;
For he hath stolen a pax, and hanged must a' be:
A damned death!
Let gallows gape for dog; let man go free
And let not hemp his wind-pipe suffocate:
But Exeter hath given the doom of death
For pax of little price.
Therefore, go speak: the duke will hear thy voice:
And let not Bardolph's vital thread be cut
With edge of penny cord and vile reproach:
Speak, captain, for his life, and I will thee requite.
|FLUELLEN||Aunchient Pistol, I do partly understand your meaning.|
|PISTOL||Why then, rejoice therefore.|
|FLUELLEN||Certainly, aunchient, it is not a thing to rejoice
at: for if, look you, he were my brother, I would
desire the duke to use his good pleasure, and put
him to execution; for discipline ought to be used.
|PISTOL||Die and be damn'd! and figo for thy friendship!|
|FLUELLEN||It is well.|
|PISTOL||The fig of Spain!|
|GOWER||Why, this is an arrant counterfeit rascal; I
remember him now; a bawd, a cutpurse.
|FLUELLEN||I'll assure you, a' uttered as brave words at the
bridge as you shall see in a summer's day. But it
is very well; what he has spoke to me, that is well,
I warrant you, when time is serve.
|GOWER||Why, 'tis a gull, a fool, a rogue, that now and then
goes to the wars, to grace himself at his return
into London under the form of a soldier. And such
fellows are perfect in the great commanders' names:
and they will learn you by rote where services were
done; at such and such a sconce, at such a breach,
at such a convoy; who came off bravely, who was
shot, who disgraced, what terms the enemy stood on;
and this they con perfectly in the phrase of war,
which they trick up with new-tuned oaths: and what
a beard of the general's cut and a horrid suit of
the camp will do among foaming bottles and
ale-washed wits, is wonderful to be thought on. But
you must learn to know such slanders of the age, or
else you may be marvellously mistook.
|FLUELLEN||I tell you what, Captain Gower; I do perceive he is
not the man that he would gladly make show to the
world he is: if I find a hole in his coat, I will
tell him my mind.
|Hark you, the king is coming, and I must speak with
him from the pridge.
|[Drum and colours. Enter KING HENRY, GLOUCESTER, and Soldiers]|
|God pless your majesty!|
|KING HENRY V||How now, Fluellen! camest thou from the bridge?|
|FLUELLEN||Ay, so please your majesty. The Duke of Exeter has
very gallantly maintained the pridge: the French is
gone off, look you; and there is gallant and most
prave passages; marry, th' athversary was have
possession of the pridge; but he is enforced to
retire, and the Duke of Exeter is master of the
pridge: I can tell your majesty, the duke is a
|KING HENRY V||What men have you lost, Fluellen?|
|FLUELLEN||The perdition of th' athversary hath been very
great, reasonable great: marry, for my part, I
think the duke hath lost never a man, but one that
is like to be executed for robbing a church, one
Bardolph, if your majesty know the man: his face is
all bubukles, and whelks, and knobs, and flames o'
fire: and his lips blows at his nose, and it is like
a coal of fire, sometimes plue and sometimes red;
but his nose is executed and his fire's out.
|KING HENRY V||We would have all such offenders so cut off: and we
give express charge, that in our marches through the
country, there be nothing compelled from the
villages, nothing taken but paid for, none of the
French upbraided or abused in disdainful language;
for when lenity and cruelty play for a kingdom, the
gentler gamester is the soonest winner.
|[Tucket. Enter MONTJOY]|
|MONTJOY||You know me by my habit.|
|KING HENRY V||Well then I know thee: what shall I know of thee?|
|MONTJOY||My master's mind.|
|KING HENRY V||Unfold it.|
|MONTJOY||Thus says my king: Say thou to Harry of England:
Though we seemed dead, we did but sleep: advantage
is a better soldier than rashness. Tell him we
could have rebuked him at Harfleur, but that we
thought not good to bruise an injury till it were
full ripe: now we speak upon our cue, and our voice
is imperial: England shall repent his folly, see
his weakness, and admire our sufferance. Bid him
therefore consider of his ransom; which must
proportion the losses we have borne, the subjects we
have lost, the disgrace we have digested; which in
weight to re-answer, his pettiness would bow under.
For our losses, his exchequer is too poor; for the
effusion of our blood, the muster of his kingdom too
faint a number; and for our disgrace, his own
person, kneeling at our feet, but a weak and
worthless satisfaction. To this add defiance: and
tell him, for conclusion, he hath betrayed his
followers, whose condemnation is pronounced. So far
my king and master; so much my office.
|KING HENRY V||What is thy name? I know thy quality.|
|KING HENRY V||Thou dost thy office fairly. Turn thee back.
And tell thy king I do not seek him now;
But could be willing to march on to Calais
Without impeachment: for, to say the sooth,
Though 'tis no wisdom to confess so much
Unto an enemy of craft and vantage,
My people are with sickness much enfeebled,
My numbers lessened, and those few I have
Almost no better than so many French;
Who when they were in health, I tell thee, herald,
I thought upon one pair of English legs
Did march three Frenchmen. Yet, forgive me, God,
That I do brag thus! This your air of France
Hath blown that vice in me: I must repent.
Go therefore, tell thy master here I am;
My ransom is this frail and worthless trunk,
My army but a weak and sickly guard;
Yet, God before, tell him we will come on,
Though France himself and such another neighbour
Stand in our way. There's for thy labour, Montjoy.
Go bid thy master well advise himself:
If we may pass, we will; if we be hinder'd,
We shall your tawny ground with your red blood
Discolour: and so Montjoy, fare you well.
The sum of all our answer is but this:
We would not seek a battle, as we are;
Nor, as we are, we say we will not shun it:
So tell your master.
|MONTJOY||I shall deliver so. Thanks to your highness.|
|GLOUCESTER||I hope they will not come upon us now.|
|KING HENRY V||We are in God's hand, brother, not in theirs.
March to the bridge; it now draws toward night:
Beyond the river we'll encamp ourselves,
And on to-morrow, bid them march away.
|[Enter the Constable of France, the LORD RAMBURES,
ORLEANS, DAUPHIN, with others]
|Constable||Tut! I have the best armour of the world. Would it were day!|
|ORLEANS||You have an excellent armour; but let my horse have his due.|
|Constable||It is the best horse of Europe.|
|ORLEANS||Will it never be morning?|
|DAUPHIN||My lord of Orleans, and my lord high constable, you
talk of horse and armour?
|ORLEANS||You are as well provided of both as any prince in the world.|
|DAUPHIN||What a long night is this! I will not change my
horse with any that treads but on four pasterns.
Ca, ha! he bounds from the earth, as if his
entrails were hairs; le cheval volant, the Pegasus,
chez les narines de feu! When I bestride him, I
soar, I am a hawk: he trots the air; the earth
sings when he touches it; the basest horn of his
hoof is more musical than the pipe of Hermes.
|ORLEANS||He's of the colour of the nutmeg.|
|DAUPHIN||And of the heat of the ginger. It is a beast for
Perseus: he is pure air and fire; and the dull
elements of earth and water never appear in him, but
only in Patient stillness while his rider mounts
him: he is indeed a horse; and all other jades you
may call beasts.
|Constable||Indeed, my lord, it is a most absolute and excellent horse.|
|DAUPHIN||It is the prince of palfreys; his neigh is like the
bidding of a monarch and his countenance enforces homage.
|ORLEANS||No more, cousin.|
|DAUPHIN||Nay, the man hath no wit that cannot, from the
rising of the lark to the lodging of the lamb, vary
deserved praise on my palfrey: it is a theme as
fluent as the sea: turn the sands into eloquent
tongues, and my horse is argument for them all:
'tis a subject for a sovereign to reason on, and for
a sovereign's sovereign to ride on; and for the
world, familiar to us and unknown to lay apart
their particular functions and wonder at him. I
once writ a sonnet in his praise and began thus:
'Wonder of nature,'--
|ORLEANS||I have heard a sonnet begin so to one's mistress.|
|DAUPHIN||Then did they imitate that which I composed to my
courser, for my horse is my mistress.
|ORLEANS||Your mistress bears well.|
|DAUPHIN||Me well; which is the prescript praise and
perfection of a good and particular mistress.
|Constable||Nay, for methought yesterday your mistress shrewdly
shook your back.
|DAUPHIN||So perhaps did yours.|
|Constable||Mine was not bridled.|
|DAUPHIN||O then belike she was old and gentle; and you rode,
like a kern of Ireland, your French hose off, and in
your straight strossers.
|Constable||You have good judgment in horsemanship.|
|DAUPHIN||Be warned by me, then: they that ride so and ride
not warily, fall into foul bogs. I had rather have
my horse to my mistress.
|Constable||I had as lief have my mistress a jade.|
|DAUPHIN||I tell thee, constable, my mistress wears his own hair.|
|Constable||I could make as true a boast as that, if I had a sow
to my mistress.
|DAUPHIN||'Le chien est retourne a son propre vomissement, et
la truie lavee au bourbier;' thou makest use of any thing.
|Constable||Yet do I not use my horse for my mistress, or any
such proverb so little kin to the purpose.
|RAMBURES||My lord constable, the armour that I saw in your tent
to-night, are those stars or suns upon it?
|Constable||Stars, my lord.|
|DAUPHIN||Some of them will fall to-morrow, I hope.|
|Constable||And yet my sky shall not want.|
|DAUPHIN||That may be, for you bear a many superfluously, and
'twere more honour some were away.
|Constable||Even as your horse bears your praises; who would
trot as well, were some of your brags dismounted.
|DAUPHIN||Would I were able to load him with his desert! Will
it never be day? I will trot to-morrow a mile, and
my way shall be paved with English faces.
|Constable||I will not say so, for fear I should be faced out of
my way: but I would it were morning; for I would
fain be about the ears of the English.
|RAMBURES||Who will go to hazard with me for twenty prisoners?|
|Constable||You must first go yourself to hazard, ere you have them.|
|DAUPHIN||'Tis midnight; I'll go arm myself.|
|ORLEANS||The Dauphin longs for morning.|
|RAMBURES||He longs to eat the English.|
|Constable||I think he will eat all he kills.|
|ORLEANS||By the white hand of my lady, he's a gallant prince.|
|Constable||Swear by her foot, that she may tread out the oath.|
|ORLEANS||He is simply the most active gentleman of France.|
|Constable||Doing is activity; and he will still be doing.|
|ORLEANS||He never did harm, that I heard of.|
|Constable||Nor will do none to-morrow: he will keep that good name still.|
|ORLEANS||I know him to be valiant.|
|Constable||I was told that by one that knows him better than
|Constable||Marry, he told me so himself; and he said he cared
not who knew it
|ORLEANS||He needs not; it is no hidden virtue in him.|
|Constable||By my faith, sir, but it is; never any body saw it
but his lackey: 'tis a hooded valour; and when it
appears, it will bate.
|ORLEANS||Ill will never said well.|
|Constable||I will cap that proverb with 'There is flattery in friendship.'|
|ORLEANS||And I will take up that with 'Give the devil his due.'|
|Constable||Well placed: there stands your friend for the
devil: have at the very eye of that proverb with 'A
pox of the devil.'
|ORLEANS||You are the better at proverbs, by how much 'A
fool's bolt is soon shot.'
|Constable||You have shot over.|
|ORLEANS||'Tis not the first time you were overshot.|
|[Enter a Messenger]|
|Messenger||My lord high constable, the English lie within
fifteen hundred paces of your tents.
|Constable||Who hath measured the ground?|
|Messenger||The Lord Grandpre.|
|Constable||A valiant and most expert gentleman. Would it were
day! Alas, poor Harry of England! he longs not for
the dawning as we do.
|ORLEANS||What a wretched and peevish fellow is this king of
England, to mope with his fat-brained followers so
far out of his knowledge!
|Constable||If the English had any apprehension, they would run away.|
|ORLEANS||That they lack; for if their heads had any
intellectual armour, they could never wear such heavy
|RAMBURES||That island of England breeds very valiant
creatures; their mastiffs are of unmatchable courage.
|ORLEANS||Foolish curs, that run winking into the mouth of a
Russian bear and have their heads crushed like
rotten apples! You may as well say, that's a
valiant flea that dare eat his breakfast on the lip of a lion.
|Constable||Just, just; and the men do sympathize with the
mastiffs in robustious and rough coming on, leaving
their wits with their wives: and then give them
great meals of beef and iron and steel, they will
eat like wolves and fight like devils.
|ORLEANS||Ay, but these English are shrewdly out of beef.|
|Constable||Then shall we find to-morrow they have only stomachs
to eat and none to fight. Now is it time to arm:
come, shall we about it?
|ORLEANS||It is now two o'clock: but, let me see, by ten
We shall have each a hundred Englishmen.