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King HENRY the Fifth.
Duke of GLOSTER,
Duke of BEDFORD, brothers to the king.
Duke of EXETER, uncle to the king.
Duke of YORK, cousin to the king.
Boy, servant to them. A Herald. Chorus.
CHARLES the Sixth, king of FRANCE.
LEWIS, the Dauphin.
Dukes of BURGUNDY, Orleans, and BOURBON.
Earls of SALISBURY, WESTMORELAND, and The Constable of FRANCE.
Archbishop of CANTERBURY.
Earl of CAMBRIDGE,conspirators against the
Sir THOMAS GREY,
Sir THOMAS ERPINGHAM, GOWER, FLUELLEN,
MACMORRIS, JAMY, officers in king Henry's
BATES, COURT, WILLIAMS, soldiers in the same.
NYM, BARDOLPH, PISTOL, formerly servants to
FALSTAFF, now soldiers in the same.
RAMBUERES, and GRANDPREE, French lords.
Governor of Harfleur. MONTJOY, a French herald.
Ambassadors to the king of England.
ISABEL, queen of FRANCE.
KATHARINE, daughter of Charles and Isabel.
ALICE, a lady attending on the princess Katharine.
QUICKLY, Pistol's wife, an hostess.
Lords, Ladies, Officers, French and English Sol-
diers, Messengers, and Attendants.
SCENE, at the beginning of the play, lies in England; but afterwards, wholly in France.
The vasty fields of France? or may we cram
Within this wooden O, the very casques,
That did affright the air at Agincourt?
O, pardon! since a crooked figure may
Attest, in little place, a million;
And let us, ciphers to this great accompt,
On your imaginary forces work:
Suppose, within the girdle of these walls
Are now confin'd two mighty monarchies,
Whose high upreared and abutting fronts
The perilous, narrow ocean parts asunder.
Piece out our imperfections with your thoughts;
Into a thousand parts divide one man,
And make imaginary puissance:
Think, when we talk of horses, that you see them
Printing their proud hoofs i'the receiving earth: For 'tis your thoughts that now must deck our kings,
Carry them here and there: jumping o'er times;
| Turning the accomplishment of many years into an hour-glass: For the which supply, Admit me chorus to this history; Who, prologue-like, your humble patience pray, Gently to hear, kindly to judge, our play.
SCENE I.-London. An ante-chamber in the King's palace.
Enter the Archbishop of CANTERBURY, and Bishop of ELY.
Cant. My lord, I'll tell you,—that self bill is urg'd,
Which, in the eleventh year o'the last king's reign
Was like, and had indeed against us pass'd,
But that the scambling and unquiet time
Did push it out of further question.
Ely. But how, my lord, shall we resist it now?
Cant. It must be thought on. If it pass against
We lose the better half of our possession:
For all the temporal lands, which men devout
By testament have given to the church,
Would they strip from us; being valued thus,
As much as would maintain, to the king's honour,
Full fifteen earls, and fifteen hundred knights;
Six thousand and two hundred good esquires;
And, to relief of lazars, and weak age,
Of indigent faint souls, past corporal toil,
A hundred alms-houses, right well supplied;
And to the coffers of the king beside,
A thousand pounds by the year: Thus runs the bill.
Ely. This would drink deep.
Cant. 'Twould drink the cup and all.
Ely. But what prevention ?
Cant. The king is full of grace, and fair regard.
Ely. And a true lover of the holy church.
Cant. The courses of his youth promis'd it not.
The breath no sooner left his father's body,
But that his wildness, mortified in him,
Seem'd to die too: yea, at that very moment,
Consideration like an angel came,
And whipp'd the offending Adam out of him;
Leaving his body as a paradise,
To envelop and contain celestial spirits.
Never was such a sudden scholar made:
Never came reformation in a flood,
With such a heady current, scouring faults;
Nor never Hydra-headed wilfulness
So soon did lose his seat, and all at once,
As in this king.
Ely. We are blessed in the change.
Cant. Hear him but reason in divinity,
And, all-admiring, with an inward wish
You would desire, the king were made a prelate :
Hear him debate of commonwealth affairs,
You would say,-it hath been all-in-all his study:
List his discourse of war, and you shall hear
A fearful battle render'd you in music:
Turn him to any cause of policy,
The gordian knot of it he will unloose,
Familiar as his garter; that, when he speaks,
The air, a charter'd libertine, is still,
And the mute wonder lurketh in men's ears,
To steal his sweet and honeyed sentences;
So that the art and practick part of life
Must be the mistress to this theorick:
Which is a wonder, how his grace should glean it,
Since his addiction was to courses vain;
His companies unletter'd, rude, and shallow;
His hours fill'd up with riots, banquets, sports;
And never noted in him any study,
Any retirement, any sequestration
From open haunts and popularity.
Ely. The strawberry grows underneath the nettle ;
And wholesome berries thrive and ripen best,
Neighbour'd by fruit of baser quality:
And so the prince obscur'd his contemplation
Under the veil of wildness; which, no doubt,
Grew like the summer grass, fastest by night,
Unseen, yet crescive in his faculty.
Cant. It must be so: for miracles are ceas'd; And therefore we must needs admit the means, How things are perfected.
Ely. But, my good lord,
How now for mitigation of this bill
Urg'd by the commons? Doth his majesty
Incline to it, or no?
Cant. He seems indifferent;
Or, rather, swaying more upon our part,
Than cherishing the exhibiters against us:
For I have made an offer to his majesty,-
Upon our spiritual convocation;
And in regard of causes now in hand,
Which I have open'd to his grace at large,
As touching France,-to give a greater sum
Than ever at one time the clergy yet
Did to his predecessors part withal.
Ely. How did this offer seem receiv'd, my lord?
Cant. With good acceptance of his majesty; Save, that there was not time enough to hear (As, I perceiv'd, his grace would fain have done,)
K. Hen. Where is my gracious lord of Canterbury?
Ere. Not here in presence.
K. Hen. Send for him, good uncle.
Under this conjuration, speak, my lord:
And we will hear, note, and believe in heart,
That what you speak is in your conscience wash'd
As pure as sin with baptism.
Cunt. Then hear me, gracious sovereign,-
and you peers,
That owe your lives, your faith, and services,
To this imperial throne ;-There is no bar
To make against your highness' claim to France,
But this, which they produce from Pharamond,
In terram Salicam mulieres ne succedant,
No woman shall succeed in Salique land:
Which Salique land the French unjustly gloze,
To be the realm of France, and Pharamond
The founder of this law and female bar.
Yet their own authors faithfully affirm,
That the land Salique lies in Germany,
Between the floods of Sala and of Elbe:
Where Charles the great, having subdued the
Enter King HENRY, GLOSTER, BEDFORD, EXE-There left behind and settled certain French,
TER, WARWICK, WESTMORELAND, and At-Who, holding in disdain the German women,
For some dishonest manners of their life,
Establish'd there this law,-to wit, no female
Should be inheritrix in Salique land;
Which Salique, as I said, 'twixt Elbe and Sala,
Is at this day in Germany call'd-Meisen.
Thus doth it well appear, the Salique law
Was not devised for the realm of France:
Nor did the French possess the Salique land
Until four hundred one and twenty years
After defunction of king Pharamond,
Idly suppos'd the founder of this law;
Who died within the year of our redemption
Four hundred twenty-six ; and Charles the great
Subdued the Saxons, and did seat the French
West. Shall we call in the ambassador, my liege?
K. Hen. Not yet, my cousin; we would be
Before we hear him, of some things of weight,
That task our thoughts, concerning us and France.
Enter the Archbishop of CANTERBURY and
Cant. God, and his angels, guard your sacred Beyond the river Saia, in the year
And make you long become it!
K. Hen. Sure, we thank you.
My learned lord, we pray you to proceed;
And justly and religiously unfold,
Why the law Salique, that they have in France,
Or should, or should not, bar us in our claim.
And God forbid, my dear and faithful lord,
That you should fashion, wrest, or bow your
Or nicely charge your understanding soul
With opening titles miscreate, whose right
Suits not in native colours with the truth;
For God doth know, how many, now in health,
Shall drop their blood in approbation
Of what your reverence shall incite us to:
Therefore take heed how you impawn our person,
awake the sleeping sword of war;
We charge you in the name of God, take heed:
For never two such kingdoms did contend,
Without much fall of blood; whose guiltless
Are every one a woe, a sore complaint,
Eight hundred five. Besides, their writers say,
King Pepin, which deposed Childerick,
Did, as heir general, being descended
Of Blithild, which was daughter to king Clothair,
Make claim and title to the crown of France.
Hugh Capet also,—that usurp'd the crown
Of Charles the duke of Lorain, sole heir male
Of the true line and stock of Charles the great,-
To fine his title with some show of truth,
(Though, in pure truth, it was corrupt and
Convey'd himself as heir to the lady Lingare,
Daughter to Charlemain, who was the son
To Lewis the emperor, and Lewis the son
Of Charles the great. Also king Lewis the tenth,
Who was sole heir to the usurper Capet,
Could not keep quiet in his conscience,
Wearing the crown of France, till satisfied
That fair queen Isabel, his grandmother,
Was lineal of the lady Ermengare,
Daughter to Charles the foresaid duke of Lorain:
By the which marriage, the line of Charles the
Gainst him, whose wrongs give edge unto the Was re-united to the crown of France.
That make such waste in brief mortality.
So that, as clear as is the summer's sun,
King Pepin's title, and Hugh Capet's claim,
King Lewis his satisfaction, all appear
To hold in right and title of the female:
So do the kings of France unto this day;
Howbeit they would hold up this Salique law,
To bar your highness claiming from the female;
And rather choose to hide them in a net,
Than amply to imbare their crooked titles,
Usurp'd from you and your progenitors.
K. Hen. May I, with right and conscience,
make this claim?
Cant. The sin upon my head, dread sovereign!
For in the book of Numbers is it writ,-
When the son dies, let the inheritance
Descend unto the daughter. Gracious lord,
Stand for your own; unwind your bloody flag;
Look back unto your mighty ancestors:
Go, my dread lord, to your great grandsire's"
From whom you claim; invoke his warlike spirit,
And your great uncle's, Edward the black prince;
Who on the French ground play'd a tragedy,
Making defeat on the full power of France;
Whiles his most mighty father on a hill
Stood smiling, to behold his lion's whelp
Forage in blood of French nobility.
O noble English, that could entertain
With half their forces the full pride of France;
And let another half stand laughing by,
All out of work, and cold for action!
Ely. Awake remembrance of these valiant
And with your puissant arm renew their feats:
You are their heir, you sit upon their throne;
The blood and courage, that renowned them,
Runs in your veins; and my thrice-puissant liege
Is in the very May-morn of his youth,
Ripe for exploits and mighty enterprizes.
Exe. Your brother kings and monarchs of the
Do all expect that you should rouse yourself,
As did the former lions of your blood.
West. They know, your grace hath cause, and
means, and might;
Se hath your highness; never king of England
Had nobles richer, and more loyal subjects;
Whose hearts have left their bodies here in Eng-
And lie pavilion'd in the fields of France.
Cant. O, let their bodies follow, my dear liege, With blood, and sword, and fire, to win your right:
In aid whereof, we of the spiritualty
Will raise your highness such a mighty sum,
As never did the clergy at one time
Bring in to any of your ancestors.
Shall be a wall sufficient to defend
Our inland from the pilfering borderers.
K. Hen. We do not mean the coursing snatch
But fear the main intendment of the Scot,
Who hath been still a giddy neighbour to us;
For you shall read, that my great grandfather
Never went with his forces into France,
But that the Scot on his unfurnish'd kingdom
Came pouring, like the tide into a breach,
With ample and brim fulness of his force;
Galling the gleaned land with hot essays;
Girding with grievous siege, castles and towns;
That England, being empty of defence,
Hath shook, and trembled at the ill neighbour-
Cant. She hath been then more fear'd than
For hear her but exampled by herself,—
When all her chivalry hath been in France,
And she a mourning widow of her nobles,
She hath herself not only well defended,
But taken, and impounded as a stray,
The king of Scots; whom she did send to
To fill king Edward's fame with prisoner kings;
And make your chronicle as rich with praise,
As is the ooze and bottom of the sea
With sunken wreck and sumless treasuries.
West. But there's a saying, very old and true,—
If that you will France win,
Then with Scotland first begin:
For once the eagle England being in prey,
To her unguarded nest the weasel Scot
Comes sneaking, and so sucks her princely eggs;
Playing the mouse, in absence of the cat,
To spoil and havock more than she can eat.
Exe. It follows then, the cat must stay at
Yet that is but a curs'd necessity;
Since we have locks to safeguard necessaries,
And pretty traps to catch the petty thieves.
While that the armed hand doth fight abroad,
The advised head defends itself at home:
For government, though high, and low, and lower,
Put into parts, doth keep in one concent;
Congruing in a full and natural close,
Cant. True: therefore doth heaven divide
The state of man in divers functions,
Setting endeavour in continual motion;
To which is fixed, as an aim or butt,
Obedience: for so work the honey bees;
Creatures, that, by rule in nature, teach
The act of order to a peopled kingdom.
K. Hen. We must not only arm to invade the They have a king, and officers of sorts:
Rut lay down our proportions to defend
Against the Scot, who will make road upon us
With all advantages.
Cant. They of those marches, gracious sove-
Where some, like magistrates, correct at home
Others, like merchants, venture trade abroad
Others, like soldiers, armed in their stings,
Make boot upon the summer's velvet buds;
Which pillage they with merry march bring home
To the tent-royal of their emperor :