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• that wandering knight so fair.' And, prithee, sweet wag, when thou art king, as, God save thy grace, -majesty I should say, for gràce thou wilt have none,Prince. What, none ?

60 Fal. No, by my troth, not so much as will serve to be prologue to an egg and butter.

Prince. Well, how then ? come, roundly, roundly.

Fal. Marry, then, sweet wag, when thou art king, let not us that are squires of the night's body be call’d thieves of the day's beauty: let us be Diana's foresters, gentlemen of the shade, minions of the moon.

Prince. Thou sayest well; for the fortune of us that are the moon's men doth ebb and flow like the sea, being govern'd, as the sea is, by the inoon. As, for proof, now: a purse of gold most resolutely snatch'd on Monday night, and most dissolutely spent on Tuesday morning ; now in as low an ebb as the foot of the ladder, and by and by in as high a flow as the ridge of the gallows.

74 Fal. But, I prithee, sweet wag, shall there be gallows standing in England when thou art king? Do not thou, when thou art king, hàng a thief.

Prince. No; thòu shalt.
Fal. Shall I? O rare! By the Lord, I'll be a brave judge.

Prince. Thou judgest false already: I mean, thou shalt have the hanging of the thieves, and so become a rare hangman. 81

Fal. Well, Hal, well; and in some sort it jumps with my humour as well as waiting in the court, I can tell you. But, Hal, I would to God thou and I knew where a commodity of good names were to be bought. An old lord of the council rated me the other day in the street about you, sir, but I mark'd him not; and yet he talk'd very wisely, but I regarded him not; and yet he talk'd wisely, and in the street too.

Prince. Thou didst well; for wisdom cries out in the streets, and no man regards it.

90 Fal. O, thou art indeed able to corrupt a saint. Thou hast done much harm upon me, Hal; God forgive thee for it! Before I knew thee, Hal, I knew nothing; and now am I, if a man should speak truly, little better than one of the wicked. I must give over this life, and I will give it over : by the Lord, an I do not, I am a villain.

Prince. Where shall we take a purse to-morrow, Jack ?

Fal. 'Zounds, where thou wilt, lad ; I'll make one; an I do not, call me villain and baffle me. Prince. I see a good amendment of life in thee; from

praying to purse-taking.

101 Fat. Why, Hal, 'tis my vocation, Hal; 'tis no sin for a man to labour in his vocation.



shall go.

Enter Poins. Prince. Good morrow, Ned.

Poins. Good morrow, sweet Hal. What says Monsieur Re. morse? What says Sir John Sack and Sugar? But, my lads, my lads, to-morrow morning, by four o'clock, early at Gadshill! there are pilgrims going to Canterbury with rich offerings, and traders riding to London with fat purses: I have vizards for you all; we may do it as seeure as sleep. If you will go, I will stuff your purses full of crowns; if you will not, tarry at home and be hang’d. Fal. Hal, wilt thou make one ?

112 Prince. Who, I rob? I a thief ? not I, by my faith.

Fal. There's neither honesty, manhood, nor good fellowship in thee, nor thou camest not of the blood royal, if thou darest not stand for ten shillings.

Prince. Well then, once in my days I'll be a madcap.
Fal. Why, that's well said.
Prince. Well, come what will, I'll tarry at home.
Fal. By the Lord, I'll be a traitor then when thou art king.
Prince. I care not.

121 Poins. Sir John, I prithee, leave the prince and me alone : I will lay him down such reasons for this adventure that he

Fal. Well, God give thee the spirit of persuasion, and him the ears of profiting, that what thou speakest may move, and what he hears may be believ'd, that the true prince may, for recreation sake, prove a false thief; for the poor abuses of the time want countenance. Farewell : you shall find me in Eastcheap. 129

[Exit Falstaff Poins. Now, my good sweet honey lord, ride with us to. morrow: I have a jest to execute that I cannot manage alone. Falstaff, Bardolph, Peto, and Gadshill shall rob those men that we have already waylaid; yourself and I will not be there; and when they have the booty, if you and I do not rob them, cut this head off from my shoulders.

Prince. How shall we part with them in setting forth ?

Poins. Why, we will set forth before or after them, and ap: point them a place of meeting, wherein it is at our pleasure to fail, and then will they adventure upon the exploit themselves; which they shall have no sooner achiev'd, but we'll set upon them. 140

Prince. Yea, but 'tis like that they will know us by our horses, by our habits, and by every other appointment, to be our. selves.

Poins. Tut! our horses they shall not see; Ill tie them in the wood; our vizards we will change after we leave them; and I have cases of buckram for the nonce, to immask our noted out. ward garments.

Prince. Yea, but I doubt they will be too hard for us. 148


Poins. Well, for two of them, I know them to be as truebred cowards as ever turn’d back; and for the third, if he fight longer than he sees reason, I'll forswear arms. The virtue of this jest will be, the incomprehensible lies that this same fat rogue will tell us when we meet at supper: how thirty, at least, he fought with ; what wards, what blows, what extremities he endur'd; and in the reproof of this lies the jest.

Prince. Well, I'll go with thee: provide us all things necessary, and meet me to-morrow night in Eastcheap; there I'll sup. Farewell. Poins. Farewell, my lord.

[Exit. 160
Prince. I know you all, and will awhile uphold
The unyok'd humour of your

Yet herein will I imitate the sun,
Who doth permit the base contagious clouds
To smother up his beauty from the world,
That, when he please again to be himself,
Being wanted, he may be more wonder'd at.
If all the year were playing holidays,
To sport would be as tedious as to work;
But when they seldom come, they wish'd for come,

And nothing pleaseth but rare accidents.
So, when this loose behaviour I throw off,
My reformation, glittering o'er my fault,
Shall show more goodly, and attract more eyes
Than that which has no foil to set it off.


London. The Palace.


SIR WALTER BLUNT, with others.
King. My blood hath been too cold and temperate,
Unapt to stir at these indignities.
You tread upon my patience: but be sure
I will from henceforth rather be myself,
Mighty and to be fear'd.

Wor. Our house, my sovereign liege, little deserves
The scourge of greatness to be used on it;
And that same greatness, too, which our own hands
Have holp to make so portly.

North. My lord,

King. Worcester, get thee gone; for I do see
Danger and disobedience in thine eye.
You have good leave to leave us : when we need
Your use and counsel, we shall send for you. [Exit Wor.
[To North.] You were about to speak.






Yea, my good lord.
Those prisoners in your highness' name demanded,
Which Harry Percy here at Holmedon took,
Were, as he says, not with such strength denied
As is deliver'd to your majesty.

Hot. My liege, I did deny no prisoners.
But I remember, when the fight was done,
When I was dry with rage and extreme toil,
Breathless and faint, leaning upon my sword,
Came there a certain lord, neat, and trimly dress’d,
Fresh as a bridegroom'; and his chin new reap'd
Show'd like a stubble-land at harvest-home;
He was perfuméd like a milliner;
And 'twix his finger and his thumb he held
A pouncet-box, which ever and anon

his nose; and still he smild and talk’d;
And as the soldiers bore dead bodies by,
He call’d them untaught knaves, unmannerly,
To bring a slovenly unhandsome corse
Betwixt the wind and his nobility.
With many holiday and lady terms
He question d me; amongst the rest, demanded
My prisoners in your majesty's behalf.
I then, all smarting with my wounds being cold,
To be so pester'd with a popinjay,
Out of my grief and my impatience,
Answer'd neglectingly I know not what,
He should, or he should not; for he made me mad
To see him shine so brisk and smell so sweet,
And talk so like a waiting-gentlewoman

and drums and wounds,—God save the mark !-
And telling me the sovereign’st thing on earth
Was parmaceti for an inward bruise;
And that it was great pity, so it was,
This villainous saltpetre should be digg'd
Out of the bowels of the harmless earth,
Which many a good tall fellow had destroy'd
So cowardly; and but for these vile guns,
He would himself have been a soldier.
This bald unjointed chat of his, my lord,
I answer’d indirectly, as I said :
And I beseech you, let not his report
Come current for an accusation

my love and your high majesty.
Blunt. The circumstance consider'd, good my lord,
Whate'er Lord Harry Percy then had said
To such a person and in such a place,




May reasonably die, and never rise
To do him wrong, so he unsay it now.

King. Why, yet he doth deny his prisoners,
But with proviso and exception, -

240 That we at our own charge shall ransom straight His brother-in-law, the foolish Mortimer; Who, on my soul, hath wilfully betray'd The lives of those that he did lead to fight Against that great magician, damn'd Glendower, Whose daughter, as we hear, the Earl of March Hath lately married. Shall our coffers, then, Be emptied to redeem a traitor home? No, on the barren mountains let him starve; For I shall never hold that man my friend

250 Whose tongue shall ask me for one penny cost To ransom home revolted Mortimer.

Hot. Revolted Mortimer!
He never did fall off, my sovereign liege,
But by the chance of war: to prove that true
Needs no more but one tongue for all those wounds,
The which he took, when on the Severn's bank,
In single opposition, hand to hand,
He did confound the best part of an hour
In changing hardiment with great Glendower :

Three times they breath'd and three times did they drink,
Upon agreement, of swift Severn’s flood;
Who then, affrighted with their bloody looks,
Ran fearfully among the trembling reeds,
And hid his crisp head in the hollow bank.
Then let not him be slander'd with revolt.

King. Thou dost belie him, Percy, thou dost belie him;
He never did encounter with Glendower :
He durst as well have met the devil alone
As Owen Glendower for an enemy.

270 Art thou not ashamed? But, henceforth, sirrah, Let me not hear you speak of Mortimer. Send me your prisoners with the speediest means, Or you

shall hear in such a kind from me As will displease you. My Lord Northumberland, We license your departure with your son. Send us your prisoners, or you'll hear of it. [Exeunt King Henry,

Hot. An if the devil come and roar for them, Blunt, and train. I will not send them: I will after straight, And tell him so; for I will ease my heart,

280 Albeit I make an hazard of my head. North. What, drunk with choler ? stay and

awhile : Here comes your uncle.



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