Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: James D. Mardock
Peer Reviewed

Henry V (Folio 1, 1623)

The Life of Henry the Fift.
875leeches my Boyes, to sucke, to sucke, the very blood to
Boy. And that's but vnwholesome food, they say.
Pist. Touch her soft mouth and march.
Bard. Farwell Hostesse.
880Nim. I cannot kisse, that is the humor of it: but
Pist. Let Huswiferie appeare: keepe close, I thee
Hostesse. Farwell: adieu.
Enter the French King, the Dolphin, the Dukes
of Berry and Britaine.
King. Thus comes the English with full power vpon vs,
And more then carefully it vs concernes,
890To answer Royally in our defences.
Therefore the Dukes of Berry and of Britaine,
Of Brabant and of Orleance, shall make forth,
And you Prince Dolphin, with all swift dispatch
To lyne and new repayre our Townes of Warre
895With men of courage, and with meanes defendant:
For England his approaches makes as fierce,
As Waters to the sucking of a Gulfe.
It fits vs then to be as prouident,
As feare may teach vs, out of late examples
900Left by the fatall and neglected English,
Vpon our fields.
Dolphin. My most redoubted Father,
It is most meet we arme vs 'gainst the Foe:
For Peace it selfe should not so dull a Kingdome,
905(Though War nor no knowne Quarrel were in question)
But that Defences, Musters, Preparations,
Should be maintain'd, assembled, and collected,
As were a Warre in expectation.
Therefore I say, 'tis meet we all goe forth,
910To view the sick and feeble parts of France:
And let vs doe it with no shew of feare,
No, with no more, then if we heard that England
Were busied with a Whitson Morris-dance:
For, my good Liege, shee is so idly King'd,
915Her Scepter so phantastically borne,
By a vaine giddie shallow humorous Youth,
That feare attends her not.
Const. O peace, Prince Dolphin,
You are too much mistaken in this King:
920Question your Grace the late Embassadors,
With what great State he heard their Embassie,
How well supply'd with Noble Councellors,
How modest in exception; and withall,
How terrible in constant resolution:
925And you shall find, his Vanities fore-spent,
Were but the out-side of the Roman Brutus,
Couering Discretion with a Coat of Folly;
As Gardeners doe with Ordure hide those Roots
That shall first spring, and be most delicate.
930Dolphin. Well, 'tis not so, my Lord High Constable.
But though we thinke it so, it is no matter:
In cases of defence, 'tis best to weigh
The Enemie more mightie then he seemes,
So the proportions of defence are fill'd:
935Which of a weake and niggardly proiection,
Doth like a Miser spoyle his Coat, with scanting
A little Cloth.
King. Thinke we King Harry strong:
And Princes, looke you strongly arme to meet him.
940The Kindred of him hath beene flesht vpon vs:

And he is bred out of that bloodie straine,
That haunted vs in our familiar Pathes:
Witnesse our too much memorable shame,
When Cressy Battell fatally was strucke,
945And all our Princes captiu'd, by the hand
Of that black Name, Edward, black Prince of Wales:
Whiles that his Mountaine Sire, on Mountaine standing
Vp in the Ayre, crown'd with the Golden Sunne,
Saw his Heroicall Seed, and smil'd to see him
950Mangle the Worke of Nature, and deface
The Patternes, that by God and by French Fathers
Had twentie yeeres been made. This is a Stem
Of that Victorious Stock: and let vs feare
The Natiue mightinesse and fate of him.
Enter a Messenger.
Mess. Embassadors from Harry King of England,
Doe craue admittance to your Maiestie.
King. Weele giue them present audience.
Goe, and bring them.
960You see this Chase is hotly followed, friends.
Dolphin. Turne head, and stop pursuit: for coward Dogs
Most spend their mouths, whē what they seem to threaten
Runs farre before them. Good my Soueraigne
Take vp the English short, and let them know
965Of what a Monarchie you are the Head:
Selfe-loue, my Liege, is not so vile a sinne,
As selfe-neglecting.
Enter Exeter.
King. From our Brother of England?
970Exe. From him, and thus he greets your Maiestie:
He wills you in the Name of God Almightie,
That you deuest your selfe, and lay apart
The borrowed Glories, that by gift of Heauen,
By Law of Nature, and of Nations, longs
975To him and to his Heires, namely the Crowne,
And all wide-stretched Honors, that pertaine
By Custome, and the Ordinance of Times,
Vnto the Crowne of France: that you may know
'Tis no sinister, nor no awk-ward Clayme,
980Pickt from the worme-holes of long-vanisht dayes,
Nor from the dust of old Obliuion rakt,
He sends you this most memorable Lyne,
In euery Branch truly demonstratiue;
Willing you ouer-looke this Pedigree:
985And when you find him euenly deriu'd
From his most fam'd, of famous Ancestors,
Edward the third; he bids you then resigne
Your Crowne and Kingdome, indirectly held
From him, the Natiue and true Challenger.
990King. Or else what followes?
Exe. Bloody constraint: for if you hide the Crowne
Euen in your hearts, there will he rake for it.
Therefore in fierce Tempest is he comming,
In Thunder and in Earth-quake, like a Ioue:
995That if requiring faile, he will compell.
And bids you, in the Bowels of the Lord,
Deliuer vp the Crowne, and to take mercie
On the poore Soules, for whom this hungry Warre
Opens his vastie Iawes: and on your head
1000Turning the Widdowes Teares, the Orphans Cryes,
The dead-mens Blood, the priuy Maidens Groanes,
For Husbands, Fathers, and betrothed Louers,
That shall be swallowed in this Controuersie.
This is his Clayme, his Threatning, and my Message:
1005Vnlesse the Dolphin be in presence here;
To whom expressely I bring greeting to.
King. For