Back to main page
Henry IV, Part 1 - Act 1, scene 3
Download Henry IV, Part 1
Last updated: Fri, Jul 31, 2015
- PDF Download as PDF
- DOC (for MS Word, Apple Pages, Open Office, etc.) without line numbers Download as DOC (for MS Word, Apple Pages, Open Office, etc.) without line numbers
- DOC (for MS Word, Apple Pages, Open Office, etc.) with line numbers Download as DOC (for MS Word, Apple Pages, Open Office, etc.) with line numbers
- HTML Download as HTML
- TXT Download as TXT
- XML Download as XML
- TEISimple XML (annotated with MorphAdorner for part-of-speech analysis) Download as TEISimple XML (annotated with MorphAdorner for part-of-speech analysis)
Navigate this workHenry IV, Part 1 - Act 1, scene 3
Act 1, scene 3
King Henry meets with Hotspur, Hotspur’s father (Northumberland), and his uncle (Worcester) to demand that Hotspur yield his prisoners to the crown. Hotspur agrees to do so only if Henry will ransom Mortimer, Hotspur’s brother-in-law, from captivity in Wales. Henry refuses and exits. Hotspur is enraged by Henry’s accusation that Mortimer is a traitor and is happy to go along with a plot devised by Worcester and Northumberland to oust Henry from the throne.Enter the King, Northumberland, Worcester, Hotspur,
⌜and⌝ Sir Walter Blunt, with others.
KING, ⌜to Northumberland, Worcester, and Hotspur⌝
0332 My blood hath been too cold and temperate,
0333 Unapt to stir at these indignities,
0334 And you have found me, for accordingly
0335 You tread upon my patience. But be sure
0336 5 I will from henceforth rather be myself,
0337 Mighty and to be feared, than my condition,
0338 Which hath been smooth as oil, soft as young down,
0339 And therefore lost that title of respect
0340 Which the proud soul ne’er pays but to the proud.
0341 10 Our house, my sovereign liege, little deserves
0342 The scourge of greatness to be used on it,
0343 And that same greatness too which our own hands
0344 Have holp to make so portly.
NORTHUMBERLAND 0345 My lord—
0346 15 Worcester, get thee gone, for I do see
0347 Danger and disobedience in thine eye.
0348 O sir, your presence is too bold and peremptory,
0349 And majesty might never yet endure
0350 The moody frontier of a servant brow.
0351 20 You have good leave to leave us. When we need
0352 Your use and counsel, we shall send for you.
0353 You were about to speak.
NORTHUMBERLAND 0354 Yea, my good lord.
p. 290355 Those prisoners in your Highness’ name demanded,
0356 25 Which Harry Percy here at Holmedon took,
0357 Were, as he says, not with such strength denied
0358 As is delivered to your Majesty.
0359 Either envy, therefore, or misprision
0360 Is guilty of this fault, and not my son.
0361 30 My liege, I did deny no prisoners.
0362 But I remember, when the fight was done,
0363 When I was dry with rage and extreme toil,
0364 Breathless and faint, leaning upon my sword,
0365 Came there a certain lord, neat and trimly dressed,
0366 35 Fresh as a bridegroom, and his chin new reaped
0367 Showed like a stubble land at harvest home.
0368 He was perfumèd like a milliner,
0369 And ’twixt his finger and his thumb he held
0370 A pouncet box, which ever and anon
0371 40 He gave his nose and took ’t away again,
0372 Who therewith angry, when it next came there,
0373 Took it in snuff; and still he smiled and talked.
0374 And as the soldiers bore dead bodies by,
0375 He called them untaught knaves, unmannerly,
0376 45 To bring a slovenly unhandsome corse
0377 Betwixt the wind and his nobility.
0378 With many holiday and lady terms
0379 He questioned me, amongst the rest demanded
0380 My prisoners in your Majesty’s behalf.
0381 50 I then, all smarting with my wounds being cold,
0382 To be so pestered with a popinjay,
0383 Out of my grief and my impatience
0384 Answered neglectingly I know not what—
0385 He should, or he should not; for he made me mad
0386 55 To see him shine so brisk and smell so sweet
0387 And talk so like a waiting-gentlewoman
0388 Of guns, and drums, and wounds—God save the
p. 310390 And telling me the sovereignest thing on Earth
0391 60 Was parmacety for an inward bruise,
0392 And that it was great pity, so it was,
0393 This villainous saltpeter should be digged
0394 Out of the bowels of the harmless Earth,
0395 Which many a good tall fellow had destroyed
0396 65 So cowardly, and but for these vile guns
0397 He would himself have been a soldier.
0398 This bald unjointed chat of his, my lord,
0399 I answered indirectly, as I said,
0400 And I beseech you, let not his report
0401 70 Come current for an accusation
0402 Betwixt my love and your high Majesty.
0403 The circumstance considered, good my lord,
0404 Whate’er Lord Harry Percy then had said
0405 To such a person and in such a place,
0406 75 At such a time, with all the rest retold,
0407 May reasonably die and never rise
0408 To do him wrong or any way impeach
0409 What then he said, so he unsay it now.
0410 Why, yet he doth deny his prisoners,
0411 80 But with proviso and exception
0412 That we at our own charge shall ransom straight
0413 His brother-in-law, the foolish Mortimer,
0414 Who, on my soul, hath willfully betrayed
0415 The lives of those that he did lead to fight
0416 85 Against that great magician, damned Glendower,
0417 Whose daughter, as we hear, that Earl of March
0418 Hath lately married. Shall our coffers then
0419 Be emptied to redeem a traitor home?
0420 Shall we buy treason and indent with fears
0421 90 When they have lost and forfeited themselves?
0422 No, on the barren mountains let him starve,
0423 For I shall never hold that man my friend
p. 330424 Whose tongue shall ask me for one penny cost
0425 To ransom home revolted Mortimer.
HOTSPUR 0426 95Revolted Mortimer!
0427 He never did fall off, my sovereign liege,
0428 But by the chance of war. To prove that true
0429 Needs no more but one tongue for all those wounds,
0430 Those mouthèd wounds, which valiantly he took
0431 100 When on the gentle Severn’s sedgy bank
0432 In single opposition hand to hand
0433 He did confound the best part of an hour
0434 In changing hardiment with great Glendower.
0435 Three times they breathed, and three times did they
0436 105 drink,
0437 Upon agreement, of swift Severn’s flood,
0438 Who then, affrighted with their bloody looks,
0439 Ran fearfully among the trembling reeds
0440 And hid his crisp head in the hollow bank,
0441 110 Blood-stainèd with these valiant combatants.
0442 Never did bare and rotten policy
0443 Color her working with such deadly wounds,
0444 Nor never could the noble Mortimer
0445 Receive so many, and all willingly.
0446 115 Then let not him be slandered with revolt.
0447 Thou dost belie him, Percy; thou dost belie him.
0448 He never did encounter with Glendower.
0449 I tell thee, he durst as well have met the devil alone
0450 As Owen Glendower for an enemy.
0451 120 Art thou not ashamed? But, sirrah, henceforth
0452 Let me not hear you speak of Mortimer.
0453 Send me your prisoners with the speediest means,
0454 Or you shall hear in such a kind from me
0455 As will displease you.—My lord Northumberland,
0456 125 We license your departure with your son.—
0457 Send us your prisoners, or you will hear of it.
King exits ⌜with Blunt and others.⌝
0458 An if the devil come and roar for them,
0459 I will not send them. I will after straight
0460 And tell him so, for I will ease my heart,
0461 130 Albeit I make a hazard of my head.
0462 What, drunk with choler? Stay and pause awhile.
0463 Here comes your uncle.
HOTSPUR 0464 Speak of Mortimer?
0465 Zounds, I will speak of him, and let my soul
0466 135 Want mercy if I do not join with him.
0467 Yea, on his part I’ll empty all these veins
0468 And shed my dear blood drop by drop in the dust,
0469 But I will lift the downtrod Mortimer
0470 As high in the air as this unthankful king,
0471 140 As this ingrate and cankered Bolingbroke.
0472 Brother, the King hath made your nephew mad.
0473 Who struck this heat up after I was gone?
0474 He will forsooth have all my prisoners,
0475 And when I urged the ransom once again
0476 145 Of my wife’s brother, then his cheek looked pale,
0477 And on my face he turned an eye of death,
0478 Trembling even at the name of Mortimer.
0479 I cannot blame him. Was not he proclaimed
0480 By Richard, that dead is, the next of blood?
0481 150 He was; I heard the proclamation.
0482 And then it was when the unhappy king—
0483 Whose wrongs in us God pardon!—did set forth
0484 Upon his Irish expedition;
p. 370485 From whence he, intercepted, did return
0486 155 To be deposed and shortly murderèd.
0487 And for whose death we in the world’s wide mouth
0488 Live scandalized and foully spoken of.
0489 But soft, I pray you. Did King Richard then
0490 Proclaim my brother Edmund Mortimer
0491 160 Heir to the crown?
NORTHUMBERLAND 0492 He did; myself did hear it.
0493 Nay then, I cannot blame his cousin king
0494 That wished him on the barren mountains starve.
0495 But shall it be that you that set the crown
0496 165 Upon the head of this forgetful man
0497 And for his sake wear the detested blot
0498 Of murderous subornation—shall it be
0499 That you a world of curses undergo,
0500 Being the agents or base second means,
0501 170 The cords, the ladder, or the hangman rather?
0502 O, pardon me that I descend so low
0503 To show the line and the predicament
0504 Wherein you range under this subtle king.
0505 Shall it for shame be spoken in these days,
0506 175 Or fill up chronicles in time to come,
0507 That men of your nobility and power
0508 Did gage them both in an unjust behalf
0509 (As both of you, God pardon it, have done)
0510 To put down Richard, that sweet lovely rose,
0511 180 And plant this thorn, this canker, Bolingbroke?
0512 And shall it in more shame be further spoken
0513 That you are fooled, discarded, and shook off
0514 By him for whom these shames you underwent?
0515 No, yet time serves wherein you may redeem
0516 185 Your banished honors and restore yourselves
0517 Into the good thoughts of the world again,
p. 390518 Revenge the jeering and disdained contempt
0519 Of this proud king, who studies day and night
0520 To answer all the debt he owes to you
0521 190 Even with the bloody payment of your deaths.
0522 Therefore I say—
WORCESTER 0523 Peace, cousin, say no more.
0524 And now I will unclasp a secret book,
0525 And to your quick-conceiving discontents
0526 195 I’ll read you matter deep and dangerous,
0527 As full of peril and adventurous spirit
0528 As to o’erwalk a current roaring loud
0529 On the unsteadfast footing of a spear.
0530 If he fall in, good night, or sink or swim!
0531 200 Send danger from the east unto the west,
0532 So honor cross it from the north to south,
0533 And let them grapple. O, the blood more stirs
0534 To rouse a lion than to start a hare!
NORTHUMBERLAND, ⌜to Worcester⌝
0535 Imagination of some great exploit
0536 205 Drives him beyond the bounds of patience.
0537 By heaven, methinks it were an easy leap
0538 To pluck bright honor from the pale-faced moon,
0539 Or dive into the bottom of the deep,
0540 Where fathom line could never touch the ground,
0541 210 And pluck up drownèd honor by the locks,
0542 So he that doth redeem her thence might wear
0543 Without corrival all her dignities.
0544 But out upon this half-faced fellowship!
0545 He apprehends a world of figures here,
0546 215 But not the form of what he should attend.—
0547 Good cousin, give me audience for a while.
0548 I cry you mercy.
p. 41WORCESTER 0549 Those same noble Scots
0550 That are your prisoners—
HOTSPUR 0551 220 I’ll keep them all.
0552 By God, he shall not have a Scot of them.
0553 No, if a Scot would save his soul, he shall not.
0554 I’ll keep them, by this hand!
WORCESTER 0555 You start away
0556 225 And lend no ear unto my purposes:
0557 Those prisoners you shall keep—
HOTSPUR 0558 Nay, I will. That’s flat!
0559 He said he would not ransom Mortimer,
0560 Forbade my tongue to speak of Mortimer.
0561 230 But I will find him when he lies asleep,
0562 And in his ear I’ll hollo “Mortimer.”
0563 Nay, I’ll have a starling shall be taught to speak
0564 Nothing but “Mortimer,” and give it him
0565 To keep his anger still in motion.
WORCESTER 0566 235Hear you, cousin, a word.
0567 All studies here I solemnly defy,
0568 Save how to gall and pinch this Bolingbroke.
0569 And that same sword-and-buckler Prince of Wales—
0570 But that I think his father loves him not
0571 240 And would be glad he met with some mischance—
0572 I would have him poisoned with a pot of ale.
0573 Farewell, kinsman. I’ll talk to you
0574 When you are better tempered to attend.
NORTHUMBERLAND, ⌜to Hotspur⌝
0575 Why, what a wasp-stung and impatient fool
0576 245 Art thou to break into this woman’s mood,
0577 Tying thine ear to no tongue but thine own!
0578 Why, look you, I am ⌜whipped⌝ and scourged with
0580 Nettled and stung with pismires, when I hear
p. 430581 250 Of this vile politician, Bolingbroke.
0582 In Richard’s time—what do you call the place?
0583 A plague upon it! It is in Gloucestershire.
0584 ’Twas where the madcap duke his uncle kept,
0585 His uncle York, where I first bowed my knee
0586 255 Unto this king of smiles, this Bolingbroke.
0587 ’Sblood, when you and he came back from
NORTHUMBERLAND 0589 At Berkeley Castle.
HOTSPUR 0590 You say true.
0591 260 Why, what a candy deal of courtesy
0592 This fawning greyhound then did proffer me:
0593 “Look when his infant fortune came to age,”
0594 And “gentle Harry Percy,” and “kind cousin.”
0595 O, the devil take such cozeners!—God forgive me!
0596 265 Good uncle, tell your tale. I have done.
0597 Nay, if you have not, to it again.
0598 We will stay your leisure.
HOTSPUR 0599 I have done, i’ faith.
0600 Then once more to your Scottish prisoners:
0601 270 Deliver them up without their ransom straight,
0602 And make the Douglas’ son your only mean
0603 For powers in Scotland, which, for divers reasons
0604 Which I shall send you written, be assured
0605 Will easily be granted.—You, my lord,
0606 275 Your son in Scotland being thus employed,
0607 Shall secretly into the bosom creep
0608 Of that same noble prelate well beloved,
0609 The Archbishop.
HOTSPUR 0610 Of York, is it not?
WORCESTER 0611 280True, who bears hard
0612 His brother’s death at Bristol, the Lord Scroop.
0613 I speak not this in estimation,
p. 450614 As what I think might be, but what I know
0615 Is ruminated, plotted, and set down,
0616 285 And only stays but to behold the face
0617 Of that occasion that shall bring it on.
0618 I smell it. Upon my life it will do well.
0619 Before the game is afoot thou still let’st slip.
0620 Why, it cannot choose but be a noble plot.
0621 290 And then the power of Scotland and of York
0622 To join with Mortimer, ha?
WORCESTER 0623 And so they shall.
0624 In faith, it is exceedingly well aimed.
0625 And ’tis no little reason bids us speed
0626 295 To save our heads by raising of a head,
0627 For bear ourselves as even as we can,
0628 The King will always think him in our debt,
0629 And think we think ourselves unsatisfied,
0630 Till he hath found a time to pay us home.
0631 300 And see already how he doth begin
0632 To make us strangers to his looks of love.
0633 He does, he does. We’ll be revenged on him.
0634 Cousin, farewell. No further go in this
0635 Than I by letters shall direct your course.
0636 305 When time is ripe, which will be suddenly,
0637 I’ll steal to Glendower and Lord Mortimer,
0638 Where you and Douglas and our powers at once,
0639 As I will fashion it, shall happily meet
0640 To bear ⌜our⌝ fortunes in our own strong arms,
0641 310 Which now we hold at much uncertainty.
0642 Farewell, good brother. We shall thrive, I trust.
0643 Uncle, adieu. O, let the hours be short
0644 Till fields and blows and groans applaud our sport.