« PreviousContinue »
• 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.
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.
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.
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.
London. The Palace.
Enter the KING, NORTHUMBERLAND, WORCESTER, HOTSPUR,
SIR WALTER BLUNT, with others.
North. My lord,
King. Worcester, get thee gone; for I do see
Yea, my good lord.
Hot. My liege, I did deny no prisoners.
his nose; and still he smild and talk’d;
and drums and wounds,—God save the mark !-
my love and your high majesty.
May reasonably die, and never rise
King. Why, yet he doth deny his prisoners,
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!
King. Thou dost belie him, Percy, thou dost belie him;
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.