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  • Title: Henry IV, Part 1 (Quarto 1, 1598)
  • Editor: Rosemary Gaby
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-371-7

    Copyright Rosemary Gaby. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Rosemary Gaby
    Not Peer Reviewed

    Henry IV, Part 1 (Quarto 1, 1598)

    Enter King, Prince of Wales, Lord Iohn of Lancaster, Earle of
    Westmerland, sir Walter Blunt, Falstalffe.
    2635King. How bloudily the sunne begins to peare
    Aboue yon bulky hill, the day lookes pale
    At his distemprature.
    Prin. The Southren winde
    Doth play the trumpet to his purposes,
    2640And by his hollow whistling in the leaues
    Foretels a tempest and a blustring day.
    Kin. Then with the loosers let it simpathize,
    For nothing can seeme foule to those that winne.
    The trumpet sounds. Enter Worcester
    King. How now my Lord of Worcester, tis not wel,
    That you and I should meet vpon such tearmes
    As now we meete. You haue deceiu'd our trust,
    And made vs doffe our easie roabes of peace,
    2650To crush our old limbs in vngentle steele,
    This is not well my Lord, this is not well.
    What say you to it? will you againe vnknit
    This churlish knot of all abhorred war?
    And moue in that obedient orbe againe,
    2655Where you did giue a faire and naturall light,
    And be no more an exhalde meteor,
    A prodigie of feare, and a portent
    Of broched mischiefe to the vnborne times.
    Worst. Heare me my liege:
    2660For mine own part I could be well content,
    To entertaine the lag end of my life
    With quiet houres. For I protest
    I haue not sought the day of this dislike.
    King. You haue not sought it, how comes it then?
    2665Fal. Rebellion lay in his way, and he found it.
    Prin. Peace chewet, peace.
    Wor. It pleasd your maiesty to turne your lookes
    Of fauor from my selfe, and all our house,
    And yet I must remember you my Lord,
    2670We were the first and dearest of your friends,
    For you my staffe of office did I breake
    In Richards time, and posted day and night
    To meet you on the way, and kisse your hand,
    When yet you were in place, and in account
    2675Nothing so strong and fortunate as I.
    It was my selfe, my brother and his sonne,
    That brought you home, and boldly did outdare
    The dangers of the time. You swore to vs,
    And you did sware that oath at Dancaster,
    2680That you did nothing purpose gainst the state,
    Nor clame no further then your new falne right,
    The seat of Gaunt, Dukedom of Lancaster:
    To this we swore our aide: but in short space
    It rainde downe fortune showring on your head,
    2685And such a floud of greatnesse fell on you,
    What with our helpe, what with the absent king,
    What with the iniuries of a wanton time,
    The seeming sufferances that you had borne,
    And the contrarious winds that held the king
    2690So long in his vnlucky Irish wars,
    That all in England did repute him dead:
    And from this swarme of faire aduantages,
    You tooke occasion to be quickly wooed
    To gripe the general sway into your hand,
    2695Forgot your oath to vs at Dancaster,
    And being fed by vs, you vsd vs so
    As that vngentle gull the Cuckoes bird
    Vseth the sparrow, did oppresse our neast,
    Grew by our feeding to so great a bulke,
    2700That euen our loue durst not come neare your sight,
    For feare of swallowing: but with nimble wing
    We were inforst for safety sake to flie
    Out of your sight, and raise this present head,
    Whereby we stand opposed by such meanes,
    2705As you your selfe haue forgde against your selfe
    By vnkind vsage, daungerous countenance,
    And violation of all faith and troth,
    Sworne to vs in your yonger enterprize.
    King. These things indeed you haue articulate,
    2710Proclaimd at market Crosses, read in Churches,
    To face the garment of rebellion
    With some fine colour that may please the eye
    Of fickle changlings and poore discontents,
    Which gape and rub the elbow at the newes
    2715Of hurly burly innouation,
    And neuer yet did insurrection want
    Such water colors to impaint his cause
    Nor moody beggars staruing for a time,
    Of pell mell hauocke and confusion.
    2720Prin. In both your armies there is many a soule,
    Shall pay full dearely for this incounter
    If once they ioine in trial, tell your nephew
    The prince of Wales doth ioine with all the world
    In praise of Henrie Percy, by my hopes
    2725This present enterprise set of his head,
    I do not thinke a brauer Gentleman,
    More actiue, valiant, or more valiant yong,
    More daring, or more bold is now aliue
    To grace this latter age with noble deedes,
    2730For my part I may speake it to my shame,
    I haue a truant beene to Chiualrie,
    And so I heare he doth account me too;
    Yet this before my fathers maiestie,
    I am content that he shall take the oddes
    2735Of his great name and estimation,
    And will to saue the blood on either side
    Trie fortune with him in a single fight.
    King. And prince of Wales, so dare we venture thee,
    Albeit, considerations infinite
    2740Do make against it: no good Worcester no,
    We loue our people well, euen those we loue
    That are misled vpon your coosens part,
    And will they take the offer of our grace,
    Both he, and they, and you, yea euery man
    2745Shall be my friend againe, and ile be his,
    So tell your coosen, and bring me word
    What he will do. But if he will not yeeld,
    Rebuke and dread correction waight on vs,
    And they shall do their office. So be gone:
    2750We will not now be troubled with replie,
    We offer faire, take it aduisedly.
    Exit Worcester.
    Prin. It will not be accepted on my life,
    The Dowglas and the Hotspur both togither,
    2755Are confident against the world in armes.
    King. Hence therefore, euery leader to his charge,
    For on their answere will we set on them,
    And God befriend vs as our cause is iust.
    Exeunt: manent
    2760Falst. Hal, if thou see me downe in the battel
    And bestride me, so, tis a poynt of friendship.
    Prin. Nothing but a Colossus can do thee that friendship,
    Say thy prayers, and farewell.
    Fal. I would twere bed time Hal, and all well.
    2765Prin. Why, thou owest God a death.
    Falst. Tis not due yet, I would be loath to pay him before his
    day, what need I be so forwarde with him that cals not on mee?
    Well, tis no matter, honor prickes me on; yea, but how if honor
    pricke me off when I come on? how then can honor set to a leg?
    2770no, or an arme? no, or take away the griefe of a wound? no, ho-
    nor hath no skil in surgerie then? no, what is honor? a word, what
    is in that word honor? what is that honour? aire, a trim recko-
    ning. Who hath it? he that died a Wednesday, doth he feele it?
    2775no, doth he heare it? no, tis insensible th|~e|? yea, to the dead, but wil
    not liue with the liuing; no, why? detraction will not suffer it,
    therefore ile none of it; honor is a meere skutchion, and so ends
    my Catechisme.