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Lest rest, and lying still, might make them look
Too near into my state. Therefore, my Harry,
Be it thy course to busy giddy minds
With foreign quarrels; that action, hence borne out,
May waste the memory of the former days.
More would I, but my lungs are wasted so,
That strength of speech is utterly denied me.
How I came by the crown, O God, forgive!
And grant it may with thee in true peace live!
PRINCE HENRY. My gracious liege,
You won it, wore it, kept it, gave it me;
Then plain, and right, must my possession be;
Which I, with more than with a common pain,
'Gainst all the world will rightfully maintain.
Appeal of the Chief Justice to King Henry V., whom he had Imprisoned when Prince of Wales.
Be you contented, wearing now the garland,*
To have a son set your decrees at nought;
To pluck down justice from your awful bench;
To trip the course of law, and blunt the sword
That guards the peace and safety of your person:
Nay, more; to spurn at your most royal image,
And mock your workings in a second body.+
Question your royal thoughts, make the case yours;
Be now the father, and propose a son:
Hear your own dignity so much profaned,
your most dreadful laws so loosely slighted,
*Having succeeded to the crown.
That is, Would you be satisfied for your representative in the state to be rudely treated.
Behold yourself so by a son disdain’d;
And then imagine me taking your part,
And in your power soft silencing your son.
An upright Judge.
You are right, justice, and you weigh this well;
Therefore, still bear the balance and the sword :
And I do wish your honours may increase,
Till you do live to see a son of mine
Offend you, and obey you, as I did.
So shall I live to speak my father's words ;-
Happy am I, that have a man so bold,
That dares do justice on my proper son:
And not less happy, having such a son,
That would deliver up his greatness so
Into the hands of justice." You did commit me ;*
For which, I do commit into your hand
The unstain'd sword that you have us❜d to bear;
With this remembrance,-That you use the same
With the like bold, just, and impartial spirit,
As you have done 'gainst me. There is my hand;
You shall be as a father to my youth:
My voice shall sound as you do
prompt mine ear; And I will stoop and humble my intents To your well-practis'd wise directions.
King Henry the Fifth's rebuke to Falstaff.
I know thee not, old man; fall to thy prayers;
How ill white hairs become a fool and jester!
I have long dream'd of such a kind of man,
* "You did commit me ;"—that is, you committed me to prison. History records that Henry V., when Prince of Wales, struck Judge Gascoigne in open court; for which he was consigned to prison by the judge.
So surfeit-swell'd, so old, and so profane;
But, being awake, I do despise my dream.
Make less thy body hence, and more thy grace;
Leave gormandising; know, the grave doth gape
For thee thrice wider than for other men.
Reply not to me with a fool-born jest ;
Presume not that I am the thing I was:
For Heaven doth know, so shall the world perceive,
That I have turn'd away my former self;
So will I those that kept me company.
When thou dost hear I am as I have been,
Approach me; and thou shalt be as thou wast,
The tutor and the feeder of my riots :
Till then I banish thee, on pain of death,
As I have done the rest of my misleaders,
Not to come near our person by ten mile.
For competence of life I will allow you,
That lack of means enforce you not to evil;
And, as we hear you do reform yourselves,
We will, according to your strength and qualities,
Give you advancement.
This historical play narrates the career of Henry the Fifth, from his ascent of the throne to his marriage with the Princess Katharine. At the commencement of the play, ambassadors from France arrive in England, with an insulting message from the Dauphin to the English monarch. The ambassadors are dismissed, with a defiance to France from Henry, who, at the head of his army, proceeds to Southampton, on his way to France.
Here the Earl of Cambridge, Lord Scroop, and Sir Thomas Grey are detected in a conspiracy against the king, and are ordered for execution. The English army then proceeds to France, and besieges Harfleur, which is taken. The great battle of Agincourt follows, in which Henry, though his army is vastly inferior in numbers to the French, obtains a signal victory. The play conIcludes with an alliance between Katharine of France and Henry, and a consequent peace between the two nations. Amongst the most prominent incidents in the play are the scenes in which Henry, in disguise, visits his soldiers on the night preceding the battle of Agincourt, the description of Falstaff's death by Mrs. Quickly, and the amusing episode of Fluellen forcing the bully Pistol to eat the leek.
Invocation of the Muse.
O, FOR a muse of fire, that would ascend
The brightest heaven of invention !
A kingdom for a stage, princes to act,
And monarchs to behold the swelling scene!
Then should the warlike Harry, like himself,
Assume the port of Mars; and, at his heels,
Leash'd in like hounds, should famine, sword, and fire,
Crouch for employment.
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.
Perfections of King Henry V.
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,
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 honey'd sentences.
The Commonwealth of Bees.
So work the honey bees;
Creatures that, by a rule in nature, teach
The act of order to a peopled kingdom.
They have a king and officers of sorts:†
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:
Who, busied in his majesty, surveys
The singing masons building roofs of gold;
The civil citizens kneading up the honey;
The poor mechanic porters crowding in
Their heavy burdens at his narrow gate;
The sad-eyed justice, with his surly hum,
+ Different degrees.