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Navigate this workHenry V
Act 4, scene 7
Fluellen, in conversation with Gower, compares Henry to the classical world-conqueror Alexander the Great. Montjoy arrives to concede the French defeat. Williams appears with Henry’s glove, which Henry does not acknowledge. Instead Henry sends Fluellen to challenge Williams, and then, to prevent the fight certain to ensue, sends Warwick and Gloucester after Fluellen.Enter Fluellen and Gower.
FLUELLEN 2512 Kill the poys and the luggage! ’Tis expressly
2513 against the law of arms. ’Tis as arrant a piece of
2514 knavery, mark you now, as can be offert, in your
2515 conscience now, is it not?
GOWER 2516 5’Tis certain there’s not a boy left alive, and
2517 the cowardly rascals that ran from the battle ha’
2518 done this slaughter. Besides, they have burned
2519 and carried away all that was in the King’s tent,
2520 wherefore the King, most worthily, hath caused
2521 10 every soldier to cut his prisoner’s throat. O, ’tis a
2522 gallant king!
FLUELLEN 2523 Ay, he was porn at Monmouth, Captain
2524 Gower. What call you the town’s name where
2525 Alexander the Pig was born?
GOWER 2526 15Alexander the Great.
FLUELLEN 2527 Why, I pray you, is not “pig” great? The pig,
2528 or the great, or the mighty, or the huge, or the
2529 magnanimous, are all one reckonings, save the
2530 phrase is a little variations.
GOWER 2531 20I think Alexander the Great was born in Macedon.
2532 His father was called Philip of Macedon, as I
2533 take it.
FLUELLEN 2534 I think it is in Macedon where Alexander is
2535 porn. I tell you, captain, if you look in the maps of
p. 1832536 25 the ’orld, I warrant you sall find, in the comparisons
2537 between Macedon and Monmouth, that the
2538 situations, look you, is both alike. There is a river in
2539 Macedon, and there is also, moreover, a river at
2540 Monmouth. It is called Wye at Monmouth, but it is
2541 30 out of my prains what is the name of the other river.
2542 But ’tis all one; ’tis alike as my fingers is to my
2543 fingers, and there is salmons in both. If you mark
2544 Alexander’s life well, Harry of Monmouth’s life is
2545 come after it indifferent well, for there is figures in
2546 35 all things. Alexander, God knows and you know, in
2547 his rages and his furies and his wraths and his
2548 cholers and his moods and his displeasures and his
2549 indignations, and also being a little intoxicates in
2550 his prains, did, in his ales and his angers, look you,
2551 40 kill his best friend, Cleitus.
GOWER 2552 Our king is not like him in that. He never
2553 killed any of his friends.
FLUELLEN 2554 It is not well done, mark you now, to take
2555 the tales out of my mouth ere it is made and
2556 45 finished. I speak but in the figures and comparisons
2557 of it. As Alexander killed his friend Cleitus, being in
2558 his ales and his cups, so also Harry Monmouth,
2559 being in his right wits and his good judgments,
2560 turned away the fat knight with the great-belly
2561 50 doublet; he was full of jests and gipes and knaveries
2562 and mocks—I have forgot his name.
GOWER 2563 Sir John Falstaff.
FLUELLEN 2564 That is he. I’ll tell you, there is good men
2565 porn at Monmouth.
GOWER 2566 55Here comes his Majesty.
Alarum. Enter King Harry, ⌜Exeter, Warwick, Gloucester,
Heralds⌝ and Bourbon with ⌜other⌝ prisoners. Flourish.
2567 I was not angry since I came to France
p. 1852568 Until this instant. Take a trumpet, herald.
2569 Ride thou unto the horsemen on yond hill.
2570 If they will fight with us, bid them come down,
2571 60 Or void the field. They do offend our sight.
2572 If they’ll do neither, we will come to them
2573 And make them skirr away as swift as stones
2574 Enforcèd from the old Assyrian slings.
2575 Besides, we’ll cut the throats of those we have,
2576 65 And not a man of them that we shall take
2577 Shall taste our mercy. Go and tell them so.
2578 Here comes the herald of the French, my liege.
2579 His eyes are humbler than they used to be.
2580 How now, what means this, herald? Know’st thou
2581 70 not
2582 That I have fined these bones of mine for ransom?
2583 Com’st thou again for ransom?
MONTJOY 2584 No, great king.
2585 I come to thee for charitable license,
2586 75 That we may wander o’er this bloody field
2587 To book our dead and then to bury them,
2588 To sort our nobles from our common men,
2589 For many of our princes—woe the while!—
2590 Lie drowned and soaked in mercenary blood.
2591 80 So do our vulgar drench their peasant limbs
2592 In blood of princes, and ⌜the⌝ wounded steeds
2593 Fret fetlock deep in gore, and with wild rage
2594 Yerk out their armèd heels at their dead masters,
2595 Killing them twice. O, give us leave, great king,
2596 85 To view the field in safety and dispose
2597 Of their dead bodies.
KING HENRY 2598 I tell thee truly, herald,
p. 1872599 I know not if the day be ours or no,
2600 For yet a many of your horsemen peer
2601 90 And gallop o’er the field.
MONTJOY 2602 The day is yours.
2603 Praised be God, and not our strength, for it!
2604 What is this castle called that stands hard by?
MONTJOY 2605 They call it Agincourt.
2606 95 Then call we this the field of Agincourt,
2607 Fought on the day of Crispin Crispianus.
FLUELLEN 2608 Your grandfather of famous memory, an ’t
2609 please your Majesty, and your great-uncle Edward
2610 the Plack Prince of Wales, as I have read in the
2611 100 chronicles, fought a most prave pattle here in
KING HENRY 2613 They did, Fluellen.
FLUELLEN 2614 Your Majesty says very true. If your Majesties
2615 is remembered of it, the Welshmen did good
2616 105 service in a garden where leeks did grow, wearing
2617 leeks in their Monmouth caps, which, your Majesty
2618 know, to this hour is an honorable badge of the
2619 service. And I do believe your Majesty takes no
2620 scorn to wear the leek upon Saint Tavy’s day.
2621 110 I wear it for a memorable honor,
2622 For I am Welsh, you know, good countryman.
FLUELLEN 2623 All the water in Wye cannot wash your
2624 Majesty’s Welsh plood out of your pody, I can tell
2625 you that. God pless it and preserve it as long as it
2626 115 pleases his Grace and his Majesty too.
KING HENRY 2627 Thanks, good my ⌜countryman.⌝
FLUELLEN 2628 By Jeshu, I am your Majesty’s countryman,
2629 I care not who know it. I will confess it to all the
2630 ’orld. I need not to be ashamed of your Majesty,
p. 1892631 120 praised be God, so long as your Majesty is an
2632 honest man.
2633 ⌜God⌝ keep me so.—Our heralds, go with him.
2634 Bring me just notice of the numbers dead
2635 On both our parts.
⌜Montjoy, English Heralds, and Gower exit.⌝
2636 125 Call yonder fellow hither.
EXETER 2637 Soldier, you must come to the King.
KING HENRY 2638 Soldier, why wear’st thou that glove in thy
WILLIAMS 2640 An ’t please your Majesty, ’tis the gage of
2641 130 one that I should fight withal, if he be alive.
KING HENRY 2642 An Englishman?
WILLIAMS 2643 An ’t please your Majesty, a rascal that
2644 swaggered with me last night, who, if alive and ever
2645 dare to challenge this glove, I have sworn to take
2646 135 him a box o’ th’ ear, or if I can see my glove in his
2647 cap, which he swore, as he was a soldier, he would
2648 wear if alive, I will strike it out soundly.
KING HENRY 2649 What think you, Captain Fluellen, is it fit
2650 this soldier keep his oath?
FLUELLEN 2651 140He is a craven and a villain else, an ’t
2652 please your Majesty, in my conscience.
KING HENRY 2653 It may be his enemy is a gentleman of
2654 great sort, quite from the answer of his degree.
FLUELLEN 2655 Though he be as good a gentleman as the
2656 145 devil is, as Lucifer and Beelzebub himself, it is
2657 necessary, look your Grace, that he keep his vow
2658 and his oath. If he be perjured, see you now, his
2659 reputation is as arrant a villain and a Jack Sauce as
2660 ever his black shoe trod upon God’s ground and His
2661 150 earth, in my conscience, la.
p. 191KING HENRY 2662 Then keep thy vow, sirrah, when thou
2663 meet’st the fellow.
WILLIAMS 2664 So I will, my liege, as I live.
KING HENRY 2665 Who serv’st thou under?
WILLIAMS 2666 155Under Captain Gower, my liege.
FLUELLEN 2667 Gower is a good captain, and is good knowledge
2668 and literatured in the wars.
KING HENRY 2669 Call him hither to me, soldier.
WILLIAMS 2670 I will, my liege.He exits.
KING HENRY, ⌜giving Fluellen Williams’s glove⌝ 2671 160Here,
2672 Fluellen, wear thou this favor for me, and stick it in
2673 thy cap. When Alençon and myself were down
2674 together, I plucked this glove from his helm. If any
2675 man challenge this, he is a friend to Alençon and an
2676 165 enemy to our person. If thou encounter any such,
2677 apprehend him, an thou dost me love.
FLUELLEN, ⌜putting the glove in his cap⌝ 2678 Your Grace
2679 does me as great honors as can be desired in the
2680 hearts of his subjects. I would fain see the man that
2681 170 has but two legs that shall find himself aggriefed at
2682 this glove, that is all; but I would fain see it once, an
2683 please God of His grace that I might see.
KING HENRY 2684 Know’st thou Gower?
FLUELLEN 2685 He is my dear friend, an please you.
KING HENRY 2686 175Pray thee, go seek him, and bring him to
2687 my tent.
FLUELLEN 2688 I will fetch him.He exits.
2689 My Lord of Warwick and my brother Gloucester,
2690 Follow Fluellen closely at the heels.
2691 180 The glove which I have given him for a favor
2692 May haply purchase him a box o’ th’ ear.
2693 It is the soldier’s. I by bargain should
2694 Wear it myself. Follow, good cousin Warwick.
2695 If that the soldier strike him, as I judge
2696 185 By his blunt bearing he will keep his word,
p. 1932697 Some sudden mischief may arise of it,
2698 For I do know Fluellen valiant
2699 And, touched with choler, hot as gunpowder,
2700 And quickly will return an injury.
2701 190 Follow, and see there be no harm between them.—
2702 Go you with me, uncle of Exeter.