SCENE I. The English camp at Agincourt.
[Enter King Henry, Bedford, and Gloucester.]
KING HENRY. Gloucester, 'tis true that we are in great danger; The greater therefore should our courage be. Good morrow, brother Bedford. God Almighty! There is some soul of goodness in things evil, Would men observingly distil it out; For our bad neighbour makes us early stirrers, Which is both healthful and good husbandry. Besides, they are our outward consciences, And preachers to us all, admonishing That we should dress us fairly for our end. Thus may we gather honey from the weed, And make a moral of the devil himself.
Good morrow, old Sir Thomas Erpingham: A good soft pillow for that good white head Were better than a churlish turf of France.
ERPINGHAM. Not so, my liege; this lodging likes me better, Since I may say, "Now lie I like a king."
KING HENRY. 'Tis good for men to love their present pains Upon example; so the spirit is eased; And when the mind is quick'ned, out of doubt, The organs, though defunct and dead before, Break up their drowsy grave and newly move, With casted slough and fresh legerity. Lend me thy cloak, Sir Thomas. Brothers both, Commend me to the princes in our camp; Do my good morrow to them, and anon Desire them all to my pavilion.
GLOUCESTER. We shall, my liege.
ERPINGHAM. Shall I attend your Grace?
KING HENRY. No, my good knight; Go with my brothers to my lords of England. I and my bosom must debate a while, And then I would no other company.
ERPINGHAM. The Lord in heaven bless thee, noble Harry!
[Exeunt [all but King.]
KING HENRY. God-a-mercy, old heart! thou speak'st cheerfully.
PISTOL. Qui va la?
KING HENRY. A friend.
PISTOL. Discuss unto me; art thou officer? Or art thou base, common, and popular?
KING HENRY. I am a gentleman of a company.
PISTOL. Trail'st thou the puissant pike?
KING HENRY. Even so. What are you?
PISTOL. As good a gentleman as the Emperor.
KING HENRY. Then you are a better than the King.
PISTOL. The King's a bawcock, and a heart of gold, A lad of life, an imp of fame; Of parents good, of fist most valiant. I kiss his dirty shoe, and from heart-string I love the lovely bully. What is thy name?
KING HENRY. Harry le Roy.
PISTOL. Le Roy! a Cornish name. Art thou of Cornish crew?
KING HENRY. No, I am a Welshman.
PISTOL. Know'st thou Fluellen?
KING HENRY. Yes.
PISTOL. Tell him I'll knock his leek about his pate Upon Saint Davy's day.
KING HENRY. Do not you wear your dagger in your cap that day, lest he knock that about yours.
PISTOL. Art thou his friend?
KING HENRY. And his kinsman too.
PISTOL. The figo for thee, then!
KING HENRY. I thank you. God be with you!
PISTOL. My name is Pistol call'd.
KING HENRY. It sorts well with your fierceness.
[Enter Fluellen and Gower.]
GOWER. Captain Fluellen!
FLUELLEN. So! in the name of Jesu Christ, speak lower. It is the greatest admiration in the universal world, when the true and aunchient prerogatifes and laws of the wars is not kept. If you would take
the pains but to examine the wars of Pompey the Great, you shall find, I warrant you, that there is no tiddle taddle nor pibble pabble in Pompey's camp. I warrant you, you shall find the ceremonies of the wars, and the cares of it, and the forms of it, and the sobriety of it, and the modesty of it, to be otherwise.
GOWER. Why, the enemy is loud; you hear him all night.
FLUELLEN. If the enemy is an ass and a fool and a prating coxcomb, is it meet, think you, that we should also, look you, be an ass and a fool and a prating coxcomb? In your own conscience, now?
GOWER. I will speak lower.
FLUELLEN. I pray you and beseech you that you will.
[Exeunt [Gower and Fluellen.]
KING HENRY. Though it appear a little out of fashion, There is much care and valour in this Welshman.
[Enter three soldiers, John Bates, Alexander Court, And Michael Williams.]
COURT. Brother John Bates, is not that the morning which breaks yonder?
BATES. I think it be; but we have no great cause to desire the approach of day.
WILLIAMS. We see yonder the beginning of the day, but I think we shall never see the end of it. Who goes there?
KING HENRY. A friend.
WILLIAMS. Under what captain serve you?
KING HENRY. Under Sir Thomas Erpingham.
WILLIAMS. A good old commander and a most kind gentleman. I pray you, what thinks he of our estate?
KING HENRY. Even as men wreck'd upon a sand, that look to be wash'd off the next tide.
BATES. He hath not told his thought to the King?
KING HENRY. No; nor it is not meet he should. For though I speak it to you, I think the King is but a man as I am. The violet smells to him as it doth to me; the element shows to him as it doth to me; all his senses have but human conditions. His ceremonies laid by, in his nakedness he appears but a man; and though his affections are higher mounted than ours, yet, when they stoop, they stoop with the like wing. Therefore, when he sees reason of fears as we do, his fears, out of doubt, be of the same relish as ours are; yet, in reason, no man should possess him with any appearance of fear, lest he, by showing it, should dishearten his army.
BATES. He may show what outward courage he will; but I believe, as cold a night as 'tis, he could wish himself in Thames up to the neck; and so I would he were, and I by him, at all adventures, so we were quit here.
KING HENRY. By my troth, I will speak my conscience of the King: I think he would not wish himself anywhere but where he is.
BATES. Then I would he were here alone; so should he be sure to be ransomed, and a many poor men's lives saved.
KING HENRY. I dare say you love him not so ill, to wish him here alone, howsoever you speak this to feel other men's minds. Methinks I could not die anywhere so contented as in the King's company, his cause being just and his quarrel honourable.
WILLIAMS. That's more than we know.
BATES. Ay, or more than we should seek after; for we know enough, if we know we are the King's subjects. If his cause be wrong, our obedience to the King wipes the crime of it out of us.
WILLIAMS. But if the cause be not good, the King himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopp'd off in a battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all, "We died at such a place"; some swearing, some crying for a surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left. I am afeard there are few die well that die in a battle; for how can they charitably dispose of anything, when blood is their argument? Now, if these men do not die well, it will be a black matter for the King that led them to it; who to disobey were against all proportion of subjection.
KING HENRY. So, if a son that is by his father sent about merchandise do sinfully miscarry upon the sea, the imputation of his wickedness, by your rule, should be imposed upon his father that sent him; or if a servant, under his master's command transporting a sum of money, be assailed by robbers and die in many irreconcil'd iniquities, you may call the business of the master the author of the servant's damnation. But this is not so. The King is not bound to answer the particular endings of his soldiers, the father of his son, nor the master of his servant; for they purpose not their death, when they purpose their services. Besides, there is no king, be his cause never so spotless, if it come to the arbitrement of swords, can try it out with all unspotted soldiers. Some peradventure have on them the guilt of premeditated and contrived murder; some, of beguiling virgins with the broken seals of perjury; some, making the wars their bulwark, that have before gored the gentle bosom of Peace with pillage and robbery. Now, if these men have defeated the law and outrun native punishment, though they can outstrip men, they have no wings to fly from God. War is his beadle, war is his vengeance; so that here men are punish'd for before-breach of the King's laws in now the King's quarrel. Where they feared the death, they have borne life away; and where they would be safe, they perish. Then if they die unprovided, no more is the King guilty of their damnation than he was before guilty of those impieties for the which they are now visited. Every subject's duty is the King's; but every subject's soul is his own. Therefore should every soldier in the wars do as every sick man in his bed, wash every mote out of his conscience; and dying so, death is to him advantage; or not dying, the time was blessedly lost wherein such preparation was gained; and in him that escapes, it were not sin to think that, making God so free an offer, He let him outlive that day to see His greatness and to teach others how they should prepare.
WILLIAMS. 'Tis certain, every man that dies ill, the ill upon his own head, the King is not to answer for it.
BATES. I do not desire he should answer for me; and yet I determine to fight lustily for him.
KING HENRY. I myself heard the King say he would not be ransom'd.
WILLIAMS. Ay, he said so, to make us fight cheerfully; but when our throats are cut, he may be ransom'd, and we ne'er the wiser.
KING HENRY. If I live to see it, I will never trust his word after.
WILLIAMS. You pay him then. That's a perilous shot out of an elder-gun, that a poor and a private displeasure can do against a monarch! You may as well go about to turn the sun to ice with fanning in his face with a peacock's feather. You'll never trust his word after! Come, 'tis a foolish saying.
KING HENRY. Your reproof is something too round. I should be angry with you, if the time were convenient.
WILLIAMS. Let it be a quarrel between us if you live.
KING HENRY. I embrace it.
WILLIAMS. How shall I know thee again?
KING HENRY. Give me any gage of thine, and I will wear it in my bonnet; then, if ever thou dar'st acknowledge it, I will make it my quarrel.
WILLIAMS. Here's my glove; give me another of thine.
KING HENRY. There.
WILLIAMS. This will I also wear in my cap. If ever thou come to me and say, after to-morrow, "This is my glove," by this hand I will take thee a box on the ear.
KING HENRY. If ever I live to see it, I will challenge it.
WILLIAMS. Thou dar'st as well be hang'd.
KING HENRY. Well, I will do it, though I take thee in the King's company.
WILLIAMS. Keep thy word; fare thee well.
BATES. Be friends, you English fools, be friends. We have French quarrels enow, if you could tell how to reckon.
KING HENRY. Indeed, the French may lay twenty French crowns to one they will beat us, for they bear them on their shoulders; but it is no English treason to cut French crowns, and to-morrow the King himself will be a clipper. Upon the King! Let us our lives, our souls, Our debts, our careful wives, Our children, and our sins lay on the King! We must bear all. O hard condition, Twin-born with greatness, subject to the breath Of every fool, whose sense no more can feel But his own wringing! What infinite heart's-ease Must kings neglect, that private men enjoy! And what have kings, that privates have not too, Save ceremony, save general ceremony? And what art thou, thou idol Ceremony? What kind of god art thou, that suffer'st more Of mortal griefs than do thy worshippers? What are thy rents? What are thy comings in? O Ceremony, show me but thy worth! What is thy soul of adoration? Art thou aught else but place, degree, and form, Creating awe and fear in other men? Wherein thou art less happy being fear'd Than they in fearing. What drink'st thou oft, instead of homage sweet, But poison'd flattery? O, be sick, great greatness, And bid thy Ceremony give thee cure! Think'st thou the fiery fever will go out With titles blown from adulation? Will it give place to flexure and low bending? Canst thou, when thou command'st the beggar's knee, Command the health of it? No, thou proud dream, That play'st so subtly with a king's repose; I am a king that find thee, and I know 'Tis not the balm, the sceptre, and the ball, The sword, the mace, the crown imperial, The intertissued robe of gold and pearl, The farced title running 'fore the King, The throne he sits on, nor the tide of pomp That beats upon the high shore of this world, No, not all these, thrice-gorgeous Ceremony,— Not all these, laid in bed majestical, Can sleep so soundly as the wretched slave, Who with a body fill'd and vacant mind Gets him to rest, cramm'd with distressful bread, Never sees horrid night, the child of hell, But, like a lackey, from the rise to set Sweats in the eye of Phoebus, and all night Sleeps in Elysium; next day after dawn, Doth rise and help Hyperion to his horse, And follows so the ever-running year, With profitable labour, to his grave: And, but for ceremony, such a wretch, Winding up days with toil and nights with sleep, Had the fore-hand and vantage of a king. The slave, a member of the country's peace, Enjoys it, but in gross brain little wots What watch the King keeps to maintain the peace, Whose hours the peasant best advantages.
ERPINGHAM. My lord, your nobles, jealous of your absence, Seek through your camp to find you.
KING HENRY. Good old knight, Collect them all together at my tent. I'll be before thee.
ERPINGHAM. I shall do't, my lord.
KING HENRY. O God of battles! steel my soldiers' hearts. Possess them not with fear. Take from them now The sense of reckoning, if the opposed numbers Pluck their hearts from them. Not to-day, O Lord, O, not to-day, think not upon the fault My father made in compassing the crown! I Richard's body have interred new, And on it have bestow'd more contrite tears Than from it issued forced drops of blood. Five hundred poor I have in yearly pay, Who twice a day their wither'd hands hold up Toward heaven, to pardon blood; and I have built Two chantries, where the sad and solemn priests Sing still for Richard's soul. More will I do; Though all that I can do is nothing worth, Since that my penitence comes after all, Imploring pardon.
GLOUCESTER. My liege!
KING HENRY. My brother Gloucester's voice? Ay; I know thy errand, I will go with thee. The day, my friends, and all things stay for me.
SCENE II. The French camp.
[Enter the Dauphin, Orleans, Rambures, and others.]
ORLEANS. The sun doth gild our armour; up, my lords!
DAUPHIN. Montez a cheval! My horse, varlet! lackey! ha!
ORLEANS. O brave spirit!
DAUPHIN. Via! les eaux et la terre.
ORLEANS. Rien puis? L'air et le feu.
DAUPHIN. Ciel, cousin Orleans.
Now, my Lord Constable!
CONSTABLE. Hark, how our steeds for present service neigh!
DAUPHIN. Mount them, and make incision in their hides, That their hot blood may spin in English eyes, And dout them with superfluous courage, ha!
RAMBURES. What, will you have them weep our horses' blood? How shall we, then, behold their natural tears?
[Enter a Messenger.]
MESSENGER. The English are embattl'd, you French peers.
CONSTABLE. To horse, you gallant princes! straight to horse! Do but behold yon poor and starved band, And your fair show shall suck away their souls, Leaving them but the shales and husks of men. There is not work enough for all our hands; Scarce blood enough in all their sickly veins To give each naked curtle-axe a stain, That our French gallants shall to-day draw out, And sheathe for lack of sport. Let us but blow on them, The vapour of our valour will o'erturn them. 'Tis positive 'gainst all exceptions, lords, That our superfluous lackeys and our peasants, Who in unnecessary action swarm About our squares of battle, were enow To purge this field of such a hilding foe, Though we upon this mountain's basis by Took stand for idle speculation, But that our honours must not. What's to say? A very little little let us do, And all is done. Then let the trumpets sound The tucket sonance and the note to mount; For our approach shall so much dare the field That England shall crouch down in fear and yield.
GRANDPRE. Why do you stay so long, my lords of France? Yond island carrions, desperate of their bones, Ill-favouredly become the morning field. Their ragged curtains poorly are let loose, And our air shakes them passing scornfully. Big Mars seems bankrupt in their beggar'd host, And faintly through a rusty beaver peeps; The horsemen sit like fixed candlesticks With torch-staves in their hand; and their poor jades Lob down their heads, drooping the hides and hips, The gum down-roping from their pale-dead eyes, And in their pale dull mouths the gimmal bit Lies foul with chew'd grass, still, and motionless; And their executors, the knavish crows, Fly o'er them, all impatient for their hour. Description cannot suit itself in words To demonstrate the life of such a battle, In life so lifeless as it shows itself.
CONSTABLE. They have said their prayers, and they stay for death.
DAUPHIN. Shall we go send them dinners and fresh suits And give their fasting horses provender, And after fight with them?
CONSTABLE. I stay but for my guard; on to the field! I will the banner from a trumpet take, And use it for my haste. Come, come, away! The sun is high, and we outwear the day.
SCENE III. The English camp.
[Enter Gloucester, Bedford, Exeter, Erpingham, with all his host: Salisbury and Westmoreland.]
GLOUCESTER. Where is the King?
BEDFORD. The King himself is rode to view their battle.
WESTMORELAND. Of fighting men they have full three-score thousand.
EXETER. There's five to one; besides, they all are fresh.
SALISBURY. God's arm strike with us! 'tis a fearful odds. God be wi' you, princes all; I'll to my charge. If we no more meet till we meet in heaven, Then, joyfully, my noble Lord of Bedford, My dear Lord Gloucester, and my good Lord Exeter, And my kind kinsman, warriors all, adieu!
BEDFORD. Farewell, good Salisbury, and good luck go with thee!
EXETER. Farewell, kind lord; fight valiantly to-day! And yet I do thee wrong to mind thee of it, For thou art fram'd of the firm truth of valour.
BEDFORD. He is as full of valour as of kindness, Princely in both.
[Enter the King.]
WESTMORELAND. O that we now had here But one ten thousand of those men in England That do no work to-day!
KING. What's he that wishes so? My cousin Westmoreland? No, my fair cousin. If we are mark'd to die, we are enow To do our country loss; and if to live, The fewer men, the greater share of honour. God's will! I pray thee, wish not one man more. By Jove, I am not covetous for gold, Nor care I who doth feed upon my cost; It yearns me not if men my garments wear; Such outward things dwell not in my desires; But if it be a sin to covet honour, I am the most offending soul alive. No, faith, my coz, wish not a man from England. God's peace! I would not lose so great an honour As one man more, methinks, would share from me For the best hope I have. O, do not wish one more! Rather proclaim it, Westmoreland, through my host, That he which hath no stomach to this fight, Let him depart. His passport shall be made, And crowns for convoy put into his purse. We would not die in that man's company That fears his fellowship to die with us. This day is call'd the feast of Crispian. He that outlives this day, and comes safe home, Will stand a tip-toe when this day is named, And rouse him at the name of Crispian. He that shall live this day, and see old age, Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours, And say, "To-morrow is Saint Crispian." Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars, And say, "These wounds I had on Crispian's day." Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot, But he'll remember with advantages What feats he did that day. Then shall our names, Familiar in his mouth as household words, Harry the King, Bedford, and Exeter, Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester, Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb'red. This story shall the good man teach his son; And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by, From this day to the ending of the world, But we in it shall be remembered, We few, we happy few, we band of brothers. For he to-day that sheds his blood with me Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile, This day shall gentle his condition; And gentlemen in England now a-bed Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here, And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.
SALISBURY. My sovereign lord, bestow yourself with speed. The French are bravely in their battles set, And will with all expedience charge on us.
KING HENRY. All things are ready, if our minds be so.
WESTMORELAND. Perish the man whose mind is backward now!
KING HENRY. Thou dost not wish more help from England, coz?
WESTMORELAND. God's will! my liege, would you and I alone, Without more help, could fight this royal battle!
KING HENRY. Why, now thou hast unwish'd five thousand men, Which likes me better than to wish us one. You know your places. God be with you all!
[Tucket. Enter Montjoy.]
MONTJOY. Once more I come to know of thee, King Harry, If for thy ransom thou wilt now compound, Before thy most assured overthrow; For certainly thou art so near the gulf, Thou needs must be englutted. Besides, in mercy, The Constable desires thee thou wilt mind Thy followers of repentance; that their souls May make a peaceful and a sweet retire From off these fields, where, wretches, their poor bodies Must lie and fester.
KING HENRY. Who hath sent thee now?
MONTJOY. The Constable of France.
KING HENRY. I pray thee, bear my former answer back: Bid them achieve me and then sell my bones. Good God! why should they mock poor fellows thus? The man that once did sell the lion's skin While the beast liv'd, was kill'd with hunting him. A many of our bodies shall no doubt Find native graves, upon the which, I trust, Shall witness live in brass of this day's work; And those that leave their valiant bones in France, Dying like men, though buried in your dunghills, They shall be fam'd; for there the sun shall greet them, And draw their honours reeking up to heaven; Leaving their earthly parts to choke your clime, The smell whereof shall breed a plague in France. Mark then abounding valour in our English, That being dead, like to the bullet's grazing, Break out into a second course of mischief, Killing in relapse of mortality. Let me speak proudly: tell the Constable We are but warriors for the working-day. Our gayness and our gilt are all besmirch'd With rainy marching in the painful field; There's not a piece of feather in our host— Good argument, I hope, we will not fly— And time hath worn us into slovenry; But, by the mass, our hearts are in the trim; And my poor soldiers tell me, yet ere night They'll be in fresher robes, or they will pluck The gay new coats o'er the French soldiers' heads And turn them out of service. If they do this— As, if God please, they shall,—my ransom then Will soon be levied. Herald, save thou thy labour. Come thou no more for ransom, gentle herald. They shall have none, I swear, but these my joints; Which if they have as I will leave 'em them, Shall yield them little, tell the Constable.
MONTJOY. I shall, King Harry. And so fare thee well; Thou never shalt hear herald any more.
KING HENRY. I fear thou'lt once more come again for ransom.
YORK. My lord, most humbly on my knee I beg The leading of the vaward.
KING HENRY. Take it, brave York. Now, soldiers, march away; And how thou pleasest, God, dispose the day!
SCENE IV. The field of battle.
[Alarum. Excursions. Enter Pistol, French Soldier, and Boy.]
PISTOL. Yield, cur!
FRENCH SOLDIER. Je pense que vous etes le gentilhomme de bonne qualite.
PISTOL. Qualitie calmie custure me! Art thou a gentleman? What is thy name? Discuss.
FRENCH SOLDIER. O Seigneur Dieu!
PISTOL. O, Signieur Dew should be a gentleman. Perpend my words, O Signieur Dew, and mark: O Signieur Dew, thou diest on point of fox, Except, O signieur, thou do give to me Egregious ransom.
FRENCH SOLDIER. O, prenez misericorde! ayez pitie de moi!
PISTOL. Moy shall not serve; I will have forty moys, Or I will fetch thy rim out at thy throat In drops of crimson blood.
FRENCH SOLDIER. Est-il impossible d'echapper la force de ton bras?
PISTOL. Brass, cur! Thou damned and luxurious mountain goat, Offer'st me brass?
FRENCH SOLDIER. O pardonnez moi!
PISTOL. Say'st thou me so? Is that a ton of moys? Come hither, boy; ask me this slave in French What is his name.
BOY. Ecoutez: comment etes-vous appele?
FRENCH SOLDIER. Monsieur le Fer.
BOY. He says his name is Master Fer.
PISTOL. Master Fer! I'll fer him, and firk him, and ferret him. Discuss the same in French unto him.
BOY. I do not know the French for fer, and ferret, and firk.
PISTOL. Bid him prepare; for I will cut his throat.
FRENCH SOLDIER. Que dit-il, monsieur?
BOY. Il me commande a vous dire que vous faites vous pret; car ce soldat ici est dispose tout a cette heure de couper votre gorge.
PISTOL. Owy, cuppele gorge, permafoy, Peasant, unless thou give me crowns, brave crowns; Or mangled shalt thou be by this my sword.
FRENCH SOLDIER. O, je vous supplie, pour l'amour de Dieu, me pardonner! Je suis gentilhomme de bonne maison; gardez ma vie, et je vous donnerai deux cents ecus.
PISTOL. What are his words?
BOY. He prays you to save his life. He is a gentleman of a good house; and for his ransom he will give you two hundred crowns.
PISTOL. Tell him my fury shall abate, and I The crowns will take.
FRENCH SOLDIER. Petit monsieur, que dit-il?
BOY. Encore qu'il est contre son jurement de pardonner aucun prisonnier; neanmoins, pour les ecus que vous l'avez promis, il est content de vous donner la liberte, le franchisement.
FRENCH SOLDIER. Sur mes genoux je vous donne mille remercimens; et je m'estime heureux que je suis tombe entre les mains d'un chevalier, je pense, le plus brave, vaillant, et tres distingue seigneur d'Angleterre.
PISTOL. Expound unto me, boy.
BOY. He gives you upon his knees, a thousand thanks; and he esteems himself happy that he hath fallen into the hands of one, as he thinks, the most brave, valorous, and thrice-worthy signieur of England.
PISTOL. As I suck blood, I will some mercy show. Follow me!
BOY. Suivez-vous le grand capitaine.
[Exeunt Pistol, and French Soldier.]
I did never know so full a voice issue from so empty a heart; but the saying is true, "The empty vessel makes the greatest sound." Bardolph and Nym had ten times more valour than this roaring devil i' the old play, that every one may pare his nails with a wooden dagger; and they are both hang'd; and so would this be, if he durst steal anything adventurously. I must stay with the lackeys with the luggage of our camp. The French might have a good prey of us, if he knew of it; for there is none to guard it but boys.
SCENE V. Another part of the field.
[Enter Constable, Orleans, Bourbon, Dauphin, and Rambures.]
CONSTABLE. O diable!
ORLEANS. O Seigneur! le jour est perdu, tout est perdu!
DAUPHIN. Mort de ma vie! all is confounded, all! Reproach and everlasting shame Sits mocking in our plumes.
[A short alarum.]
O mechante fortune! Do not run away.
CONSTABLE. Why, all our ranks are broke.
DAUPHIN. O perdurable shame! let's stab ourselves, Be these the wretches that we play'd at dice for?
ORLEANS. Is this the king we sent to for his ransom?
BOURBON. Shame and eternal shame, nothing but shame! Let's die in honour! Once more back again! And he that will not follow Bourbon now, Let him go hence, and with his cap in hand, Like a base pandar, hold the chamber door Whilst by a slave, no gentler than my dog, His fairest daughter is contaminated.
CONSTABLE. Disorder, that hath spoil'd us, friend us now! Let us on heaps go offer up our lives.
ORLEANS. We are enow yet living in the field To smother up the English in our throngs, If any order might be thought upon.
BOURBON. The devil take order now! I'll to the throng. Let life be short, else shame will be too long.
SCENE VI. Another part of the field.
[Alarum. Enter King Henry and his train, with prisoners.]
KING HENRY. Well have we done, thrice valiant countrymen. But all's not done; yet keep the French the field.
EXETER. The Duke of York commends him to your Majesty.
KING HENRY. Lives he, good uncle? Thrice within this hour I saw him down; thrice up again, and fighting. From helmet to the spur all blood he was.
EXETER. In which array, brave soldier, doth he lie, Larding the plain; and by his bloody side, Yoke-fellow to his honour-owing wounds, The noble Earl of Suffolk also lies. Suffolk first died; and York, all haggled over, Comes to him, where in gore he lay insteeped, And takes him by the beard; kisses the gashes That bloodily did yawn upon his face. He cries aloud, "Tarry, my cousin Suffolk! My soul shall thine keep company to heaven; Tarry, sweet soul, for mine, then fly abreast, As in this glorious and well-foughten field We kept together in our chivalry." Upon these words I came and cheer'd him up. He smil'd me in the face, raught me his hand, And, with a feeble gripe, says, "Dear my lord, Commend my service to my sovereign." So did he turn and over Suffolk's neck He threw his wounded arm and kiss'd his lips; And so espous'd to death, with blood he seal'd A testament of noble-ending love. The pretty and sweet manner of it forc'd Those waters from me which I would have stopp'd; But I had not so much of man in me, And all my mother came into mine eyes And gave me up to tears.
KING HENRY. I blame you not; For, hearing this, I must perforce compound With mistful eyes, or they will issue too.
But hark! what new alarum is this same? The French have reinforc'd their scatter'd men. Then every soldier kill his prisoners; Give the word through.
SCENE VII. Another part of the field.
[Enter Fluellen and Gower.]
FLUELLEN. Kill the poys and the luggage! 'Tis expressly against the law of arms. 'Tis as arrant a piece of knavery, mark you now, as can be offer't; in your conscience, now, is it not?
GOWER. 'Tis certain there's not a boy left alive; and the cowardly rascals that ran from the battle ha' done this slaughter. Besides, they have burned and carried away all that was in the King's tent; wherefore the King, most worthily, hath caus'd every soldier to cut his prisoner's throat. O, 'tis a gallant king!
FLUELLEN. Ay, he was porn at Monmouth, Captain Gower. What call you the town's name where Alexander the Pig was born?
GOWER. Alexander the Great.
FLUELLEN. Why, I pray you, is not pig great? The pig, or the great, or the mighty, or the huge, or the magnanimous, are all one reckonings, save the phrase is a little variations.
GOWER. I think Alexander the Great was born in Macedon. His father was called Philip of Macedon, as I take it.
FLUELLEN. I think it is in Macedon where Alexander is porn. I tell you, Captain, if you look in the maps of the 'orld, I warrant you sall find, in the comparisons between Macedon and Monmouth, that the situations, look you, is both alike. There is a river in Macedon; and there is also moreover a river at Monmouth; it is call'd Wye at Monmouth; but it is out of my prains what is the name of the other river; but 'tis all one, 'tis alike as my fingers is to my fingers, and there is salmons in both. If you mark Alexander's life well, Harry of Monmouth's life is come after it indifferent well; for there is figures in all things. Alexander, God knows, and you know, in his rages, and his furies, and his wraths, and his cholers, and his moods, and his displeasures, and his indignations, and also being a little intoxicates in his prains, did, in his ales and his angers, look you, kill his best friend, Cleitus.
GOWER. Our King is not like him in that. He never kill'd any of his friends.
FLUELLEN. It is not well done, mark you now, to take the tales out of my mouth, ere it is made and finished. I speak but in the figures and comparisons of it. As Alexander kill'd his friend Cleitus, being in his ales and his cups; so also Harry Monmouth, being in his right wits and his good judgements, turn'd away the fat knight with the great belly doublet. He was full of jests, and gipes, and knaveries, and mocks; I have forgot his name.
GOWER. Sir John Falstaff.
FLUELLEN. That is he. I'll tell you there is good men porn at Monmouth.
GOWER. Here comes his Majesty.
[Alarum. Enter King Henry and [forces; Warwick, Gloucester, Exeter, with prisoners. Flourish.]
KING HENRY. I was not angry since I came to France Until this instant. Take a trumpet, herald; Ride thou unto the horsemen on yond hill. If they will fight with us, bid them come down, Or void the field; they do offend our sight. If they'll do neither, we will come to them, And make them skirr away, as swift as stones Enforced from the old Assyrian slings. Besides, we'll cut the throats of those we have, And not a man of them that we shall take Shall taste our mercy. Go and tell them so.
EXETER. Here comes the herald of the French, my liege.
GLOUCESTER. His eyes are humbler than they us'd to be.
KING HENRY. How now! what means this, herald? Know'st thou not That I have fin'd these bones of mine for ransom? Com'st thou again for ransom?
MONTJOY. No, great King; I come to thee for charitable license, That we may wander o'er this bloody field To book our dead, and then to bury them; To sort our nobles from our common men. For many of our princes—woe the while!— Lie drown'd and soak'd in mercenary blood; So do our vulgar drench their peasant limbs In blood of princes; and their wounded steeds Fret fetlock deep in gore, and with wild rage Yerk out their armed heels at their dead masters, Killing them twice. O, give us leave, great King, To view the field in safety, and dispose Of their dead bodies!
KING HENRY. I tell thee truly, herald, I know not if the day be ours or no; For yet a many of your horsemen peer And gallop o'er the field.
MONTJOY. The day is yours.
KING HENRY. Praised be God, and not our strength, for it! What is this castle call'd that stands hard by?
MONTJOY. They call it Agincourt.
KING HENRY. Then call we this the field of Agincourt, Fought on the day of Crispin Crispianus.
FLUELLEN. Your grandfather of famous memory, an't please your Majesty, and your great-uncle Edward the Plack Prince of Wales, as I have read in the chronicles, fought a most prave pattle here in France.
KING HENRY. They did, Fluellen.
FLUELLEN. Your Majesty says very true. If your Majesties is rememb'red of it, the Welshmen did good service in garden where leeks did grow, wearing leeks in their Monmouth caps; which, your Majesty know, to this hour is an honourable badge of the service; and I do believe your Majesty takes no scorn to wear the leek upon Saint Tavy's day.
KING HENRY. I wear it for a memorable honour; For I am Welsh, you know, good countryman.
FLUELLEN. All the water in Wye cannot wash your Majesty's Welsh plood out of your pody, I can tell you that. Got pless it and preserve it, as long as it pleases His grace, and His majesty too!
KING HENRY. Thanks, good my countryman.
FLUELLEN. By Jeshu, I am your Majesty's countryman, I care not who know it. I will confess it to all the 'orld. I need not be asham'd of your Majesty, praised be God, so long as your Majesty is an honest man.
KING HENRY. God keep me so!
Our heralds go with him; Bring me just notice of the numbers dead On both our parts. Call yonder fellow hither.
[Exeunt Heralds with Montjoy.]
EXETER. Soldier, you must come to the King.
KING HENRY. Soldier, why wear'st thou that glove in thy cap?
WILLIAMS. An't please your Majesty, 'tis the gage of one that I should fight withal, if he be alive.
KING HENRY. An Englishman?
WILLIAMS. An't please your Majesty, a rascal that swagger'd with me last night; who, if alive and ever dare to challenge this glove, I have sworn to take him a box o' the ear; or if I can see my glove in his cap, which he swore, as he was a soldier, he would wear if alive, I will strike it out soundly.
KING HENRY. What think you, Captain Fluellen? Iis it fit this soldier keep his oath?
FLUELLEN. He is a craven and a villain else, an't please your Majesty, in my conscience.
KING HENRY. It may be his enemy is a gentlemen of great sort, quite from the answer of his degree.
FLUELLEN. Though he be as good a gentleman as the devil is, as Lucifier and Belzebub himself, it is necessary, look your Grace, that he keep his vow and his oath. If he be perjur'd, see you now, his reputation is as arrant a villain and a Jacksauce, as ever his black shoe trod upon God's ground and His earth, in my conscience, la!
KING HENRY. Then keep thy vow, sirrah, when thou meet'st the fellow.
WILLIAMS. So I will, my liege, as I live.
KING HENRY. Who serv'st thou under?
WILLIAMS. Under Captain Gower, my liege.
FLUELLEN. Gower is a good captain, and is good knowledge and literatured in the wars.
KING HENRY. Call him hither to me, soldier.
WILLIAMS. I will, my liege.
KING HENRY. Here, Fluellen; wear thou this favour for me and stick it in thy cap. When Alencon and myself were down together, I pluck'd this glove from his helm. If any man challenge this, he is a friend to Alencon, and an enemy to our person. If thou encounter any such, apprehend him, an thou dost me love.
FLUELLEN. Your Grace doo's me as great honours as can be desir'd in the hearts of his subjects. I would fain see the man, that has but two legs, that shall find himself aggrief'd at this glove; that is all. But I would fain see it once, an please God of His grace that I might see.
KING HENRY. Know'st thou Gower?
FLUELLEN. He is my dear friend, an please you.
KING HENRY. Pray thee, go seek him, and bring him to my tent.
FLUELLEN. I will fetch him.
KING HENRY. My Lord of Warwick, and my brother Gloucester, Follow Fluellen closely at the heels. The glove which I have given him for a favour May haply purchase him a box o' the ear. It is the soldier's; I by bargain should Wear it myself. Follow, good cousin Warwick. If that the soldier strike him, as I judge By his blunt bearing he will keep his word, Some sudden mischief may arise of it; For I do know Fluellen valiant And, touch'd with choler, hot as gunpowder, And quickly will return an injury. Follow, and see there be no harm between them. Go you with me, uncle of Exeter.
SCENE VIII. Before King Henry's pavilion.
[Enter Gower and Williams.]
WILLIAMS. I warrant it is to knight you, Captain.
FLUELLEN. God's will and his pleasure, captain, I beseech you now, come apace to the King. There is more good toward you peradventure than is in your knowledge to dream of.
WILLIAMS. Sir, know you this glove?
FLUELLEN. Know the glove! I know the glove is a glove.
WILLIAMS. I know this; and thus I challenge it.
FLUELLEN. 'Sblood! an arrant traitor as any is in the universal world, or in France, or in England!
GOWER. How now, sir! you villain!
WILLIAMS. Do you think I'll be forsworn?
FLUELLEN. Stand away, Captain Gower. I will give treason his payment into plows, I warrant you.
WILLIAMS. I am no traitor.
FLUELLEN. That's a lie in thy throat. I charge you in his Majesty's name, apprehend him; he's a friend of the Duke Alencon's.
[Enter Warwick and Gloucester.]
WARWICK. How now, how now! what's the matter?
FLUELLEN. My lord of Warwick, here is—praised be God for it!—a most contagious treason come to light, look you, as you shall desire in a summer's day. Here is his Majesty.
[Enter King Henry and Exeter.]
KING HENRY. How now! what's the matter?
FLUELLEN. My liege, here is a villain and a traitor, that, look your Grace,
has struck the glove which your Majesty is take out of the helmet of Alencon.
WILLIAMS. My liege, this was my glove; here is the fellow of it; and he that I gave it to in change promis'd to wear it in his cap. I promis'd to strike him, if he did. I met this man with my glove in his cap, and I have been as good as my word.
FLUELLEN. Your Majesty hear now, saving your Majesty's manhood, what an arrant, rascally, beggarly, lousy knave it is. I hope your Majesty is pear me testimony and witness, and will avouchment, that this is the glove of Alencon that your Majesty is give me; in your conscience, now?
KING HENRY. Give me thy glove, soldier. Look, here is the fellow of it. 'Twas I, indeed, thou promisedst to strike; And thou hast given me most bitter terms.
FLUELLEN. An it please your Majesty, let his neck answer for it, if there is any martial law in the world.
KING HENRY. How canst thou make me satisfaction?
WILLIAMS. All offences, my lord, come from the heart. Never came any from mine that might offend your Majesty.
KING HENRY. It was ourself thou didst abuse.
WILLIAMS. Your Majesty came not like yourself. You appear'd to me but as a common man; witness the night, your garments, your lowliness; and what your Highness suffer'd under that shape, I beseech you take it for your own fault and not mine; for had you been as I took you for, I made no offence; therefore, I beseech your Highness, pardon me.
KING HENRY. Here, uncle Exeter, fill this glove with crowns, And give it to this fellow. Keep it, fellow; And wear it for an honour in thy cap Till I do challenge it. Give him his crowns; And, captain, you must needs be friends with him.
FLUELLEN. By this day and this light, the fellow has mettle enough in his belly. Hold, there is twelve pence for you; and I pray you to serve God, and keep you out of prawls, and prabbles, and quarrels, and dissensions, and, I warrant you, it is the better for you.
WILLIAMS. I will none of your money.
FLUELLEN. It is with a good will; I can tell you, it will serve you to mend your shoes. Come, wherefore should you be so pashful? Your shoes is not so good. 'Tis a good silling, I warrant you, or I will change it.
[Enter [an English] Herald.]
KING HENRY. Now, herald, are the dead numb'red?
HERALD. Here is the number of the slaught'red French.
KING HENRY. What prisoners of good sort are taken, uncle?
EXETER. Charles Duke of Orleans, nephew to the King; John Duke of Bourbon, and Lord Bouciqualt: Of other lords and barons, knights and squires, Full fifteen hundred, besides common men.
KING HENRY. This note doth tell me of ten thousand French That in the field lie slain; of princes, in this number, And nobles bearing banners, there lie dead One hundred twenty-six; added to these, Of knights, esquires, and gallant gentlemen, Eight thousand and four hundred; of the which, Five hundred were but yesterday dubb'd knights; So that, in these ten thousand they have lost, There are but sixteen hundred mercenaries; The rest are princes, barons, lords, knights, squires, And gentlemen of blood and quality. The names of those their nobles that lie dead: Charles Delabreth, High Constable of France; Jacques of Chatillon, Admiral of France; The master of the cross-bows, Lord Rambures; Great Master of France, the brave Sir Guichard Dauphin, John Duke of Alencon, Anthony Duke of Brabant, The brother to the Duke of Burgundy, And Edward Duke of Bar; of lusty earls, Grandpre and Roussi, Fauconberg and Foix, Beaumont and Marle, Vaudemont and Lestrale. Here was a royal fellowship of death! Where is the number of our English dead?
[Herald shows him another paper.]
Edward the Duke of York, the Earl of Suffolk, Sir Richard Ketly, Davy Gam, esquire; None else of name; and of all other men But five and twenty.—O God, thy arm was here; And not to us, but to thy arm alone, Ascribe we all! When, without stratagem, But in plain shock and even play of battle, Was ever known so great and little loss On one part and on the other? Take it, God, For it is none but thine!
EXETER. 'Tis wonderful!
KING HENRY. Come, go we in procession to the village; And be it death proclaimed through our host To boast of this or take that praise from God Which is His only.
FLUELLEN. Is it not lawful, an please your Majesty, to tell how many is kill'd?
KING HENRY. Yes, Captain; but with this acknowledgment, That God fought for us.
FLUELLEN. Yes, my conscience, He did us great good.
KING HENRY. Do we all holy rites. Let there be sung Non nobis and Te Deum, The dead with charity enclos'd in clay, And then to Calais; and to England then, Where ne'er from France arriv'd more happy men.
CHORUS. Vouchsafe to those that have not read the story, That I may prompt them; and of such as have, I humbly pray them to admit the excuse Of time, of numbers, and due course of things, Which cannot in their huge and proper life Be here presented. Now we bear the King Toward Calais; grant him there; there seen, Heave him away upon your winged thoughts Athwart the sea. Behold, the English beach Pales in the flood with men, with wives and boys, Whose shouts and claps out-voice the deep-mouth'd sea, Which like a mighty whiffler 'fore the King Seems to prepare his way. So let him land, And solemnly see him set on to London. So swift a pace hath thought that even now You may imagine him upon Blackheath, Where that his lords desire him to have borne His bruised helmet and his bended sword Before him through the city. He forbids it, Being free from vainness and self-glorious pride; Giving full trophy, signal, and ostent Quite from himself to God. But now behold, In the quick forge and working-house of thought, How London doth pour out her citizens! The mayor and all his brethren in best sort, Like to the senators of the antique Rome, With the plebeians swarming at their heels, Go forth and fetch their conquering Caesar in; As, by a lower but loving likelihood, Were now the general of our gracious empress, As in good time he may, from Ireland coming, Bringing rebellion broached on his sword, How many would the peaceful city quit, To welcome him! Much more, and much more cause, Did they this Harry. Now in London place him; As yet the lamentation of the French Invites the King of England's stay at home,— The Emperor's coming in behalf of France, To order peace between them;—and omit All the occurrences, whatever chanc'd, Till Harry's back-return again to France. There must we bring him; and myself have play'd The interim, by rememb'ring you 'tis past. Then brook abridgment, and your eyes advance After your thoughts, straight back again to France.
SCENE I. France. The English camp.
[Enter Fluellen and Gower.]
GOWER. Nay, that's right; but why wear you your leek to-day? Saint Davy's day is past.
FLUELLEN. There is occasions and causes why and wherefore in all things. I will tell you asse my friend, Captain Gower. The rascally, scald, beggarly, lousy, pragging knave, Pistol, which you and yourself and all the world know to be no petter than a fellow, look you now, of no merits, he is come to me and prings me pread and salt yesterday, look you, and bid me eat my leek. It was in a place where I could not breed no contention with him; but I will be so bold as to wear it in my cap till I see him once again, and then I will tell him a little piece of my desires.
GOWER. Why, here he comes, swelling like a turkey-cock.
FLUELLEN. 'Tis no matter for his swellings nor his turkey-cocks. God pless you, Aunchient Pistol! you scurvy, lousy knave, God pless you!
PISTOL. Ha! art thou bedlam? Dost thou thirst, base Troyan, To have me fold up Parca's fatal web? Hence! I am qualmish at the smell of leek.
FLUELLEN. I peseech you heartily, scurfy, lousy knave, at my desires, and my requests, and my petitions, to eat, look you, this leek. Because, look you, you do not love it, nor your affections and your appetites and your digestions doo's not agree with it, I would desire you to eat it.
PISTOL. Not for Cadwallader and all his goats.
FLUELLEN. There is one goat for you. [Strikes him.] Will you be so good, scald knave, as eat it?
PISTOL. Base Troyan, thou shalt die.
FLUELLEN. You say very true, scald knave, when God's will is. I will desire you to live in the mean time, and eat your victuals. Come, there is sauce for it. [Strikes him.] You call'd me yesterday mountain-squire; but I will make you to-day a squire of low degree. I pray you, fall to; if you can mock a leek, you can eat a leek.
GOWER. Enough, captain; you have astonish'd him.
FLUELLEN. I say, I will make him eat some part of my leek, or I will peat his pate four days. Bite, I pray you; it is good for your green wound and your ploody coxcomb.
PISTOL. Must I bite?
FLUELLEN. Yes, certainly, and out of doubt and out of question too, and ambiguities.
PISTOL. By this leek, I will most horribly revenge. I eat and eat, I swear—
FLUELLEN. Eat, I pray you. Will you have some more sauce to your leek? There is not enough leek to swear by.
PISTOL. Quiet thy cudgel; thou dost see I eat.
FLUELLEN. Much good do you, scald knave, heartily. Nay, pray you, throw none away; the skin is good for your broken coxcomb. When you take occasions to see leeks herefter, I pray you, mock at 'em; that is all.
FLUELLEN. Ay, leeks is good. Hold you, there is a groat to heal your pate.
PISTOL. Me a groat!
FLUELLEN. Yes, verily and in truth you shall take it; or I have another leek in my pocket, which you shall eat.
PISTOL. I take thy groat in earnest of revenge.
FLUELLEN. If I owe you anything I will pay you in cudgels. You shall be a woodmonger, and buy nothing of me but cudgels. God be wi' you, and keep you, and heal your pate.
PISTOL. All hell shall stir for this.
GOWER. Go, go; you are a couterfeit cowardly knave. Will you mock at an ancient tradition, begun upon an honourable respect, and worn as a memorable trophy of predeceased valour, and dare not avouch in your deeds any of your words? I have seen you gleeking and galling at this gentleman twice or thrice. You thought, because he could not speak English in the native garb, he could not therefore handle an English cudgel. You find it otherwise; and henceforth let a Welsh correction teach you a good English condition. Fare ye well.
PISTOL. Doth Fortune play the huswife with me now? News have I, that my Doll is dead i' the spital Of malady of France; And there my rendezvous is quite cut off. Old I do wax; and from my weary limbs Honour is cudgell'd. Well, bawd I'll turn, And something lean to cutpurse of quick hand. To England will I steal, and there I'll steal; And patches will I get unto these cudgell'd scars, And swear I got them in the Gallia wars.
SCENE II. France. A royal palace.
[Enter, at one door, King Henry, Exeter, Bedford, [Gloucester,] Warwick, [Westmoreland,] and other Lords; at another, the French King, Queen Isabel, [the Princess Katharine, Alice, and other Ladies;] the Duke of Burgundy, and other French.]
KING HENRY. Peace to this meeting, wherefore we are met! Unto our brother France, and to our sister, Health and fair time of day; joy and good wishes To our most fair and princely cousin Katharine; And, as a branch and member of this royalty, By whom this great assembly is contriv'd, We do salute you, Duke of Burgundy; And, princes French, and peers, health to you all!
FRENCH KING. Right joyous are we to behold your face, Most worthy brother England; fairly met! So are you, princes English, every one.
QUEEN ISABEL. So happy be the issue, brother England, Of this good day and of this gracious meeting As we are now glad to behold your eyes; Your eyes, which hitherto have borne in them Against the French that met them in their bent The fatal balls of murdering basilisks. The venom of such looks, we fairly hope, Have lost their quality; and that this day Shall change all griefs and quarrels into love.
KING HENRY. To cry amen to that, thus we appear.
QUEEN ISABEL. You English princes all, I do salute you.
BURGUNDY. My duty to you both, on equal love, Great Kings of France and England! That I have labour'd, With all my wits, my pains, and strong endeavours, To bring your most imperial Majesties Unto this bar and royal interview, Your mightiness on both parts best can witness. Since then my office hath so far prevail'd That, face to face and royal eye to eye, You have congreeted, let it not disgrace me If I demand, before this royal view, What rub or what impediment there is, Why that the naked, poor, and mangled Peace, Dear nurse of arts, plenties, and joyful births, Should not in this best garden of the world, Our fertile France, put up her lovely visage? Alas, she hath from France too long been chas'd, And all her husbandry doth lie on heaps, Corrupting in it own fertility. Her vine, the merry cheerer of the heart, Unpruned dies; her hedges even-pleach'd, Like prisoners wildly overgrown with hair, Put forth disorder'd twigs; her fallow leas The darnel, hemlock, and rank fumitory, Doth root upon, while that the coulter rusts That should deracinate such savagery; The even mead, that erst brought sweetly forth The freckled cowslip, burnet, and green clover, Wanting the scythe, all uncorrected, rank, Conceives by idleness, and nothing teems But hateful docks, rough thistles, kexes, burs, Losing both beauty and utility; And as our vineyards, fallows, meads, and hedges, Defective in their natures, grow to wildness. Even so our houses and ourselves and children Have lost, or do not learn for want of time, The sciences that should become our country; But grow like savages,—as soldiers will That nothing do but meditate on blood,— To swearing and stern looks, diffus'd attire, And everything that seems unnatural. Which to reduce into our former favour You are assembled; and my speech entreats That I may know the let, why gentle Peace Should not expel these inconveniences And bless us with her former qualities.
KING HENRY. If, Duke of Burgundy, you would the peace, Whose want gives growth to the imperfections Which you have cited, you must buy that peace With full accord to all our just demands; Whose tenours and particular effects You have enschedul'd briefly in your hands.
BURGUNDY. The King hath heard them; to the which as yet There is no answer made.
KING HENRY. Well, then, the peace, Which you before so urg'd, lies in his answer.
FRENCH KING. I have but with a cursorary eye O'erglanc'd the articles. Pleaseth your Grace To appoint some of your council presently To sit with us once more, with better heed To re-survey them, we will suddenly Pass our accept and peremptory answer.
KING HENRY. Brother, we shall. Go, uncle Exeter, And brother Clarence, and you, brother Gloucester, Warwick, and Huntington, go with the King; And take with you free power to ratify, Augment, or alter, as your wisdoms best Shall see advantageable for our dignity, Anything in or out of our demands, And we'll consign thereto. Will you, fair sister, Go with the princes, or stay here with us?
QUEEN ISABEL. Our gracious brother, I will go with them. Haply a woman's voice may do some good, When articles too nicely urg'd be stood on.
KING HENRY. Yet leave our cousin Katharine here with us: She is our capital demand, compris'd Within the fore-rank of our articles.
QUEEN ISABEL. She hath good leave.
[Exeunt all except Henry, Katharine [and Alice.]
KING HENRY. Fair Katharine, and most fair, Will you vouchsafe to teach a soldier terms Such as will enter at a lady's ear And plead his love-suit to her gentle heart?
KATHARINE. Your Majesty shall mock me; I cannot speak your England.
KING HENRY. O fair Katharine, if you will love me soundly with your French heart, I will be glad to hear you confess it brokenly with your English tongue. Do you like me, Kate?
KATHARINE. Pardonnez-moi, I cannot tell wat is "like me."
KING HENRY. An angel is like you, Kate, and you are like an angel.
KATHARINE. Que dit-il? Que je suis semblable a les anges?
ALICE. Oui, vraiment, sauf votre grace, ainsi dit-il.
KING HENRY. I said so, dear Katharine; and I must not blush to affirm it.
KATHARINE. O bon Dieu! les langues des hommes sont pleines de tromperies.
KING HENRY. What says she, fair one? That the tongues of men are full of deceits?
ALICE. Oui, dat de tongues of de mans is be full of deceits: dat is de Princess.
KING HENRY. The Princess is the better Englishwoman. I' faith, Kate, my wooing is fit for thy understanding: I am glad thou canst speak no better English; for if thou couldst, thou wouldst find me such a plain king that thou wouldst think I had sold my farm to buy my crown. I know no ways to mince it in love, but directly to say, "I love you"; then if you urge me farther than to say, "Do you in faith?" I wear out my suit. Give me your answer; i' faith, do; and so clap hands and a bargain. How say you, lady?
KATHARINE. Sauf votre honneur, me understand well.
KING HENRY. Marry, if you would put me to verses, or to dance for your sake, Kate, why you undid me; for the one, I have neither words nor measure, and for the other I have no strength in measure, yet a reasonable measure in strength. If I could win a lady at leap-frog, or by vaulting into my saddle with my armour on my back, under the correction of bragging be it spoken, I should quickly leap into a wife. Or if I might buffet for my love, or bound my horse for her favours, I could lay on like a butcher and sit like a jack-an-apes, never off. But, before God, Kate, I cannot look greenly, nor gasp out my eloquence, nor I have no cunning in protestation; only downright oaths, which I never use till urg'd, nor never break for urging. If thou canst love a fellow of this temper, Kate, whose face is not worth sunburning, that never looks in his glass for love of anything he sees there, let thine eye be thy cook. I speak to thee plain soldier. If thou canst love me for this, take me; if not, to say to thee that I shall die, is true; but for thy love, by the Lord, no; yet I love thee too. And while thou liv'st, dear Kate, take a fellow of plain and uncoined constancy; for he perforce must do thee right, because he hath not the gift to woo in other places; for these fellows of infinite tongue, that can rhyme themselves into ladies' favours, they do always reason themselves out again. What! a speaker is but a prater: a rhyme is but a ballad. A good leg will fall; a straight back will stoop; a black beard will turn white; a curl'd pate will grow bald; a fair face will wither; a full eye will wax hollow; but a good heart, Kate, is the sun and the moon; or rather the sun and not the moon; for it shines bright and never changes, but keeps his course truly. If thou would have such a one, take me; and take me, take a soldier; take a soldier, take a king. And what say'st thou then to my love? Speak, my fair, and fairly, I pray thee.
KATHARINE. Is it possible dat I should love de enemy of France?
KING HENRY. No; it is not possible you should love the enemy of France, Kate; but, in loving me, you should love the friend of France; for I love France so well that I will not part with a village of it, I will have it all mine; and, Kate, when France is mine and I am yours, then yours is France and you are mine.
KATHARINE. I cannot tell wat is dat.
KING HENRY. No, Kate? I will tell thee in French; which I am sure will hang upon my tongue like a new-married wife about her husband's neck, hardly to be shook off. Je quand sur le possession de France, et quand vous avez le possession de moi,—let me see, what then? Saint Denis be my speed!—donc votre est France et vous etes mienne. It is as easy for me, Kate, to conquer the kingdom as to speak so much more French. I shall never move thee in French, unless it be to laugh at me.
KATHARINE. Sauf votre honneur, le Francais que vous parlez, il est meilleur que l'Anglois lequel je parle.
KING HENRY. No, faith, is't not, Kate; but thy speaking of my tongue, and I thine, most truly-falsely, must needs be granted to be much at one. But, Kate, dost thou understand thus much English: canst thou love me?
KATHARINE. I cannot tell.
KING HENRY. Can any of your neighbours tell, Kate? I'll ask them. Come, I know thou lovest me; and at night, when you come into your closet, you'll question this gentlewoman about me; and I know, Kate, you will to her dispraise those parts in me that you love with your heart. But, good Kate, mock me mercifully; the rather, gentle princess, because I love thee cruelly. If ever thou beest mine, Kate, as I have a saving faith within me tells me thou shalt, I get thee with scambling, and thou must therefore needs prove a good soldier-breeder. Shall not thou and I, between Saint Denis and Saint George, compound a boy, half French, half English, that shall go to Constantinople and take the Turk by the beard? Shall we not? What say'st thou, my fair flower-de-luce?
KATHARINE. I do not know dat.
KING HENRY. No; 'tis hereafter to know, but now to promise. Do but now promise, Kate, you will endeavour for your French part of such a boy; and for my English moiety, take the word of a king and a bachelor. How answer you, la plus belle Katherine du monde, mon tres cher et divin deesse?
KATHARINE. Your Majestee ave fausse French enough to deceive de most sage damoiselle dat is en France.
KING HENRY. Now, fie upon my false French! By mine honour, in true English, I love thee, Kate; by which honour I dare not swear thou lovest me; yet my blood begins to flatter me that thou dost, notwithstanding the poor and untempering effect of my visage. Now, beshrew my father's ambition! he was thinking of civil wars when he got me; therefore was I created with a stubborn outside, with an aspect of iron, that, when I come to woo ladies, I fright them. But, in faith, Kate, the elder I wax, the better I shall appear. My comfort is, that old age, that ill layer up of beauty, can do no more spoil upon my face. Thou hast me, if thou hast me, at the worst; and thou shalt wear me, if thou wear me, better and better; and therefore tell me, most fair Katharine, will you have me? Put off your maiden blushes; avouch the thoughts of your heart with the looks of an empress; take me by the hand, and say, Harry of England, I am thine; which word thou shalt no sooner bless mine ear withal, but I will tell thee aloud, England is thine, Ireland is thine, France is thine, and Henry Plantagenet is thine; who, though I speak it before his face, if he be not fellow with the best king, thou shalt find the best king of good fellows. Come, your answer in broken music; for thy voice is music and thy English broken; therefore, queen of all, Katharine, break thy mind to me in broken English. Wilt thou have me?
KATHARINE. Dat is as it shall please de roi mon pere.
KING HENRY. Nay, it will please him well, Kate; it shall please him, Kate.
KATHARINE. Den it sall also content me.
KING HENRY. Upon that I kiss your hand, and call you my queen.
KATHARINE. Laissez, mon seigneur, laissez, laissez! Ma foi, je ne veux point que vous abaissez votre grandeur en baisant la main d'une indigne serviteur. Excusez-moi, je vous supplie, mon tres-puissant seigneur.
KING HENRY. Then I will kiss your lips, Kate.
KATHARINE. Les dames et demoiselles pour etre baisees devant leur noces, il n'est pas la coutume de France.
KING HENRY. Madame my interpreter, what says she?
ALICE. Dat it is not be de fashion pour les ladies of France,—I cannot tell wat is baiser en Anglish.
KING HENRY. To kiss.
ALICE. Your Majestee entendre bettre que moi.
KING HENRY. It is not a fashion for the maids in France to kiss before they are married, would she say?
ALICE. Oui, vraiment.
KING HENRY. O Kate, nice customs curtsy to great kings. Dear Kate, you and I cannot be confined within the weak list of a country's fashion. We are the makers of manners, Kate; and the liberty that follows our places stops the mouth of all find-faults, as I will do yours, for upholding the nice fashion of your country in denying me a kiss; therefore, patiently and yielding. [Kissing her.] You have witchcraft in your lips, Kate; there is more eloquence in a sugar touch of them than in the tongues of the French council; and they should sooner persuade Harry of England than a general petition of monarchs. Here comes your father.
[Re-enter the French Power and the English Lords.]
BURGUNDY. God save your Majesty! My royal cousin, teach you our princess English?
KING HENRY. I would have her learn, my fair cousin, how perfectly I love her; and that is good English.
BURGUNDY. Is she not apt?
KING HENRY. Our tongue is rough, coz, and my condition is not smooth; so that, having neither the voice nor the heart of flattery about me, I cannot so conjure up the spirit of love in her, that he will appear in his true likeness.
BURGUNDY. Pardon the frankness of my mirth, if I answer you for that. If you would conjure in her, you must make a circle; if conjure up Love in her in his true likeness, he must appear naked and blind. Can you blame her then, being a maid yet ros'd over with the virgin crimson of modesty, if she deny the appearance of a naked blind boy in her naked seeing self? It were, my lord, a hard condition for a maid to consign to.
KING HENRY. Yet they do wink and yield, as love is blind and enforces.
BURGUNDY. They are then excus'd, my lord, when they see not what they do.
KING HENRY. Then, good my lord, teach your cousin to consent winking.
BURGUNDY. I will wink on her to consent, my lord, if you will teach her to know my meaning; for maids, well summer'd and warm kept, are like flies at Bartholomew-tide, blind, though they have their eyes; and then they will endure handling, which before would not abide looking on.
KING HENRY. This moral ties me over to time and a hot summer; and so I shall catch the fly, your cousin, in the latter end, and she must be blind too.
BURGUNDY. As love is, my lord, before it loves.
KING HENRY. It is so; and you may, some of you, thank love for my blindness, who cannot see many a fair French city for one fair French maid that stands in my way.
FRENCH KING. Yes, my lord, you see them perspectively, the cities turn'd into a maid; for they are all girdled with maiden walls that war hath [never] ent'red.
KING HENRY. Shall Kate be my wife?
FRENCH KING. So please you.
KING HENRY. I am content, so the maiden cities you talk of may wait on her; so the maid that stood in the way for my wish shall show me the way to my will.
FRENCH KING. We have consented to all terms of reason.
KING HENRY. Is't so, my lords of England?
WESTMORELAND. The king hath granted every article; His daughter first, and then in sequel all, According to their firm proposed natures.
EXETER. Only he hath not yet subscribed this: where your Majesty demands, that the King of France, having any occasion to write for matter of grant, shall name your Highness in this form and with this addition, in French, Notre tres-cher fils Henri, Roi d'Angleterre, Heritier de France; and thus in Latin, Praeclarissimus filius noster Henricus, Rex Angliae et Haeres Franciae.
FRENCH KING. Nor this I have not, brother, so denied But our request shall make me let it pass.
KING HENRY. I pray you then, in love and dear alliance, Let that one article rank with the rest; And thereupon give me your daughter.
FRENCH KING. Take her, fair son, and from her blood raise up Issue to me; that the contending kingdoms Of France and England, whose very shores look pale With envy of each other's happiness, May cease their hatred; and this dear conjunction Plant neighbourhood and Christian-like accord In their sweet bosoms, that never war advance His bleeding sword 'twixt England and fair France.
KING HENRY. Now, welcome, Kate; and bear me witness all, That here I kiss her as my sovereign queen.
QUEEN ISABEL. God, the best maker of all marriages, Combine your hearts in one, your realms in one! As man and wife, being two, are one in love, So be there 'twixt your kingdoms such a spousal, That never may ill office, or fell jealousy, Which troubles oft the bed of blessed marriage, Thrust in between the paction of these kingdoms, To make divorce of their incorporate league; That English may as French, French Englishmen, Receive each other. God speak this Amen!
KING HENRY. Prepare we for our marriage; on which day, My Lord of Burgundy, we'll take your oath, And all the peers', for surety of our leagues, Then shall I swear to Kate, and you to me; And may our oaths well kept and prosperous be!
CHORUS. Thus far, with rough and all-unable pen, Our bending author hath pursu'd the story, In little room confining mighty men, Mangling by starts the full course of their glory. Small time, but in that small most greatly lived This star of England. Fortune made his sword, By which the world's best garden he achieved, And of it left his son imperial lord. Henry the Sixth, in infant bands crown'd King Of France and England, did this king succeed; Whose state so many had the managing, That they lost France and made his England bleed: Which oft our stage hath shown; and, for their sake, In your fair minds let this acceptance take.