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  • Title: Henry IV, Part 2 (Folio 1 1623)
  • Editor: Rosemary Gaby

  • 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    Not Peer Reviewed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 2 (Folio 1 1623)

    45Scena Secunda.
    Enter Lord Bardolfe, and the Porter.
    L. Bar. Who keepes the Gate heere hoa?
    Where is the Earle?
    Por. What shall I say you are?
    50Bar. Tell thou the Earle
    That the Lord Bardolfe doth attend him heere.
    Por. His Lordship is walk'd forth into the Orchard,
    Please it your Honor, knocke but at the Gate,
    And he himselfe will answer.
    55Enter Northumberland.
    L. Bar. Heere comes the Earle.
    Nor. What newes Lord Bardolfe? Eu'ry minute now
    Should be the Father of some Stratagem;
    The Times are wilde: Contention (like a Horse
    60Full of high Feeding) madly hath broke loose,
    And beares downe all before him.
    L. Bar. Noble Earle,
    I bring you certaine newes from Shrewsbury.
    Nor. Good, and heauen will.
    65L. Bar. As good as heart can wish:
    The King is almost wounded to the death:
    And in the Fortune of my Lord your Sonne,
    Prince Harrie slaine out-right: and both the Blunts
    Kill'd by the hand of Dowglas. Yong Prince Iohn,
    70And Westmerland, and Stafford, fled the Field.
    And Harrie Monmouth's Brawne (the Hulke Sir Iohn)
    Is prisoner to your Sonne. O, such a Day,
    (So fought, so follow'd, and so fairely wonne)
    Came not, till now, to dignifie the Times
    75Since Caesars Fortunes.
    Nor. How is this deriu'd?
    Saw you the Field? Came you from Shrewsbury?
    L. Bar. I spake with one (my L.) that came frōm thence,
    A Gentleman well bred, and of good name,
    80That freely render'd me these newes for true.
    Nor. Heere comes my Seruant Trauers, whom I sent
    On Tuesday last, to listen after Newes.
    Enter Trauers.
    L. Bar. My Lord, I ouer-rod him on the way,
    85And he is furnish'd with no certainties,
    More then he (haply) may retaile from me.
    Nor. Now Trauers, what good tidings comes frōm you?
    The second Part of King Henry the Fourth. 75
    Tra. My Lord, Sir Iohn Vmfreuill turn'd me backe
    With ioyfull tydings; and (being better hors'd)
    90Out-rod me. After him, came spurring head
    A Gentleman (almost fore-spent with speed)
    That stopp'd by me, to breath his bloodied horse.
    He ask'd the way to Chester: And of him
    I did demand what Newes from Shrewsbury:
    95He told me, that Rebellion had ill lucke,
    And that yong Harry Percies Spurre was cold.
    With that he gaue his able Horse the head,
    And bending forwards strooke his able heeles
    Against the panting sides of his poore Iade
    100Vp to the Rowell head, and starting so,
    He seem'd in running, to deuoure the way,
    Staying no longer question.
    North. Ha? Againe:
    Said he yong Harrie Percyes Spurre was cold?
    105(Of Hot-Spurre, cold-Spurre?) that Rebellion,
    Had met ill lucke?
    L. Bar. My Lord: Ile tell you what,
    If my yong Lord your Sonne, haue not the day,
    Vpon mine Honor, for a silken point
    110Ile giue my Barony. Neuer talke of it.
    Nor. Why should the Gentleman that rode by Trauers
    Giue then such instances of Losse?
    L. Bar. Who, he?
    He was some hielding Fellow, that had stolne
    115The Horse he rode-on: and vpon my life
    Speake at aduenture. Looke, here comes more Newes.
    Enter Morton.
    Nor. Yea, this mans brow, like to a Title-leafe,
    Fore-tels the Nature of a Tragicke Volume:
    120So lookes the Strond, when the Imperious Flood
    Hath left a witnest Vsurpation.
    Say Morton, did'st thou come from Shrewsbury?
    Mor. I ran from Shrewsbury (my Noble Lord)
    Where hatefull death put on his vgliest Maske
    125To fright our party.
    North. How doth my Sonne, and Brother?
    Thou trembl'st; and the whitenesse in thy Cheeke
    Is apter then thy Tongue, to tell thy Errand.
    Euen such a man, so faint, so spiritlesse,
    130So dull, so dead in looke, so woe-be-gone,
    Drew Priams Curtaine, in the dead of night,
    And would haue told him, Halfe his Troy was burn'd.
    But Priam found the Fire, ere he his Tongue:
    And I, my Percies death, ere thou report'st it.
    135This, thou would'st say: Your Sonne did thus, and thus:
    Your Brother, thus. So fought the Noble Dowglas,
    Stopping my greedy eare, with their bold deeds.
    But in the end (to stop mine Eare indeed)
    Thou hast a Sigh, to blow away this Praise,
    140Ending with Brother, Sonne, and all are dead.
    Mor. Dowglas is liuing, and your Brother, yet:
    But for my Lord, your Sonne.
    North. Why, he is dead.
    See what a ready tongue Suspition hath:
    145He that but feares the thing, he would not know,
    Hath by Instinct, knowledge from others Eyes,
    That what he feard, is chanc'd. Yet speake (Morton)
    Tell thou thy Earle, his Diuination Lies,
    And I will take it, as a sweet Disgrace,
    150And make thee rich, for doing me such wrong.
    Mor. You are too great, to be (by me) gainsaid:
    Your Spirit is too true, your Feares too certaine.
    North. Yet for all this, say not that Percies dead.
    I see a strange Confession in thine Eye:
    155Thou shak'st thy head, and hold'st it Feare, or Sinne,
    To speake a truth. If he be slaine, say so:
    The Tongue offends not, that reports his death:
    And he doth sinne that doth belye the dead:
    Not he, which sayes the dead is not aliue:
    160Yet the first bringer of vnwelcome Newes
    Hath but a loosing Office: and his Tongue,
    Sounds euer after as a sullen Bell
    Remembred, knolling a departing Friend.
    L. Bar. I cannot thinke (my Lord) your son is dead.
    165Mor. I am sorry, I should force you to beleeue
    That, which I would to heauen, I had not seene.
    But these mine eyes, saw him in bloody state,
    Rend'ring faint quittance (wearied, and out-breath'd)
    To Henrie Monmouth, whose swift wrath beate downe
    170The neuer-daunted Percie to the earth,
    From whence (with life) he neuer more sprung vp.
    In few; his death (whose spirit lent a fire,
    Euen to the dullest Peazant in his Campe)
    Being bruited once, tooke fire and heate away
    175From the best temper'd Courage in his Troopes.
    For from his Mettle, was his Party steel'd;
    Which once, in him abated, all the rest
    Turn'd on themselues, like dull and heauy Lead:
    And as the Thing, that's heauy in it selfe,
    180Vpon enforcement, flyes with greatest speede,
    So did our Men, heauy in Hotspurres losse,
    Lend to this weight, such lightnesse with their Feare,
    That Arrowes fled not swifter toward their ayme,
    Then did our Soldiers (ayming at their safety)
    185Fly from the field. Then was that Noble Worcester
    Too soone ta'ne prisoner: and that furious Scot,
    (The bloody Dowglas) whose well-labouring sword
    Had three times slaine th'appearance of the King,
    Gan vaile his stomacke, and did grace the shame
    190Of those that turn'd their backes: and in his flight,
    Stumbling in Feare, was tooke. The summe of all,
    Is, that the King hath wonne: and hath sent out
    A speedy power, to encounter you my Lord,
    Vnder the Conduct of yong Lancaster
    195And Westmerland. This is the Newes at full.
    North. For this, I shall haue time enough to mourne.
    In Poyson, there is Physicke: and this newes
    (Hauing beene well) that would haue made me sicke,
    Being sicke, haue in some measure, made me well.
    200And as the Wretch, whose Feauer-weakned ioynts,
    Like strengthlesse Hindges, buckle vnder life,
    Impatient of his Fit, breakes like a fire
    Out of his keepers armes: Euen so, my Limbes
    (Weak'ned with greefe) being now inrag'd with greefe,
    205Are thrice themselues. Hence therefore thou nice crutch,
    A scalie Gauntlet now, with ioynts of Steele
    Must gloue this hand. And hence thou sickly Quoife,
    Thou art a guard too wanton for the head,
    Which Princes, flesh'd with Conquest, ayme to hit.
    210Now binde my Browes with Iron, and approach
    The ragged'st houre, that Time and Spight dare bring
    To frowne vpon th'enrag'd Northumberland.
    Let Heauen kisse Earth: now let not Natures hand
    Keepe the wilde Flood confin'd: Let Order dye,
    215And let the world no longer be a stage
    To feede Contention in a ling'ring Act:
    But let one spirit of the First-borne Caine
    g Reigne
    76The second Part of King Henry the Fourth.
    Reigne in all bosomes, that each heart being set
    On bloody Courses, the rude Scene may end,
    220And darknesse be the burier of the dead.
    L. Bar. Sweet Earle, diuorce not wisedom from your (Honor.
    Mor. The liues of all your louing Complices
    Leane-on your health, the which if you giue-o're
    To stormy Passion, must perforce decay.
    225You cast th'euent of Warre (my Noble Lord)
    And summ'd the accompt of Chance, before you said
    Let vs make head: It was your presurmize,
    That in the dole of blowes, your Son might drop.
    You knew he walk'd o're perils, on an edge
    230More likely to fall in, then to get o're:
    You were aduis'd his flesh was capeable
    Of Wounds, and Scarres; and that his forward Spirit
    Would lift him, where most trade of danger rang'd,
    Yet did you say go forth: and none of this
    235(Though strongly apprehended) could restraine
    The stiffe-borne Action: What hath then befalne?
    Or what hath this bold enterprize bring forth,
    More then that Being, which was like to be?
    L. Bar. We all that are engaged to this losse,
    240Knew that we ventur'd on such dangerous Seas,
    That if we wrought out life, was ten to one:
    And yet we ventur'd for the gaine propos'd,
    Choak'd the respect of likely perill fear'd,
    And since we are o're-set, venture againe.
    245Come, we will all put forth; Body, and Goods,
    Mor. 'Tis more then time: And (my most Noble Lord)
    I heare for certaine, and do speake the truth:
    The gentle Arch-bishop of Yorke is vp
    With well appointed Powres: he is a man
    250Who with a double Surety bindes his Followers.
    My Lord (your Sonne) had onely but the Corpes,
    But shadowes, and the shewes of men to fight.
    For that same word (Rebellion) did diuide
    The action of their bodies, from their soules,
    255And they did fight with queasinesse, constrain'd
    As men drinke Potions; that their Weapons only
    Seem'd on our side: but for their Spirits and Soules,
    This word (Rebellion) it had froze them vp,
    As Fish are in a Pond. But now the Bishop
    260Turnes Insurrection to Religion,
    Suppos'd sincere, and holy in his Thoughts:
    He's follow'd both with Body, and with Minde:
    And doth enlarge his Rising, with the blood
    Of faire King Richard, scrap'd from Pomfret stones,
    265Deriues from heauen, his Quarrell, and his Cause:
    Tels them, he doth bestride a bleeding Land,
    Gasping for life, vnder great Bullingbrooke,
    And more, and lesse, do flocke to follow him.
    North. I knew of this before. But to speake truth,
    270This present greefe had wip'd it from my minde.
    Go in with me, and councell euery man
    The aptest way for safety, and reuenge:
    Get Posts, and Letters, and make Friends with speed,
    Neuer so few, nor neuer yet more need. Exeunt.