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Which he in this adventure hath surprised,
To his own use he keeps; and sends me word,
I shall have none but Mordake earl of Fife.
West. This is his uncle's teaching, this is Worcester,
Malevolent to you in all aspects;
Which makes him prune himself,1 and bristle up
K. Hen. But I have sent for him to answer this;
Cousin, on Wednesday next our council we
Another room in the palace.
Enter PRINCE HENRY and FALSTAFF.
Fal. Now, Hal, what time of day is it, lad?
P. Hen. Thou art so fat-witted, with drinking of old sack, and unbuttoning thee after supper, and sleeping upon benches after noon, that thou hast forgotten to demand that truly which thou wouldst
Trim himself, as birds their feathers.
truly know. What a devil hast thou to do with the time of the day? Unless hours were cups of sack, and minutes capons, and clocks the tongues of bawds, and dials the signs of leaping-houses, and the blessed sun himself a fair hot wench in flamecolored taffata; I see no reason, why thou shouldst be so superfluous to demand the time of the day.
Fal. Indeed, you come near me now, Hal: for we, that take purses, go by the moon and seven stars; and not by Phoebus,-he, 'that wandering knight so fair.' And, I pray thee, sweet wag, when thou art king,—as, God save thy grace, (majesty, I should say; for grace thou wilt have none)
P. Hen. What! none?
Fal. No, by my troth; not so much as will serve to be prologue to an egg and butter.
P. Hen. Well, how then? come, roundly, roundly. Fal. Marry, then, sweet wag, when thou art king, let not us, that are squires of the night's body, be called thieves of the day's beauty; let us be— Diana's foresters, gentlemen of the shade, minions of the moon and let men say, we be men of good government; being governed as the sea is, by our noble and chaste mistress the moon, under whose countenance we-steal.
P. Hen. Thou sayest well; and it holds well too : for the fortune of us, that are the moon's men, doth ebb and flow like the sea; being governed, as the sea is, by the moon. As for proof now: a purse of gold most resolutely snatched on Monday night, and most dissolutely spent on Tuesday morning;
got with swearing--lay by;
and spent with crying -bring in : 2 now, in as low an ebb as the foot of the ladder; and, by and by, in as high a flow as the ridge of the gallows.
Fal. By the Lord, thou sayest true, lad. And is not my hostess of the tavern a most sweet wench?
P. Hen. As the honey of Hybla, my old lad of the castle. And is not a buff jerkin a most sweet robe of durance? 3
Fal. How now, how now, mad wag? what, in thy quips and thy quiddities? What a plague
have I to do with a buff jerkin?
P. Hen. Why, what a pox have I to do with my hostess of the tavern?
Fal. Well, thou hast called her to a reckoning many a time and oft.
P. Hen. Did I ever call for thee to pay thy part?
Fal. No; I'll give thee thy due, thou hast paid all there.
P. Hen. Yea, and elsewhere, so far as my coin would stretch; and, where it would not, I have used my credit.
Fal. Yea, and so used it, that were it not here apparent that thou art heir apparent,-But, I pr'y
1 Stand still.
2 i. e. more wine.
Sheriffs' officers were formerly clothed in buff.
thee, sweet wag, shall there be gallows standing in England when thou art king; and resolution thus fobbed, as it is, with the rusty curb of old father antic the law? Do not thou, when thou art king, hang a thief.
P. Hen. No; thou shalt.
Fal. Shall I? O rare! By the Lord, I'll be a brave judge.
P. Hen. Thou judgest false already; I mean, thou shalt have the hanging of the thieves, and so become a rare hangman.
Fal. Well, Hal, well: and in some sort it jumps with my humor, as well as waiting in the court, I can tell you.
P. Hen. For obtaining of suits?
Fal. Yea, for obtaining of suits, whereof the hangman hath no lean wardrobe. 'Sblood, I am as melancholy as a gib cat, or a lugged bear.
P. Hen. Or an old lion, or a lover's lute.
Fal. Yea, or the drone of a Lincolnshire bagpipe.
P. Hen. What sayest thou to a hare, or the melancholy of Moor-ditch?
Fal. Thou hast the most unsavory similes; and art, indeed, the most comparative, rascalliest,— sweet young prince,-But, Hal, I pr'ythee, trouble me no more with vanity. I would to God, thou and I knew where a commodity of good names were to be bought. An old lord of the council rated me the other day in the street about you, sir; but I
marked him not: and yet he talked very wisely, but
I regarded him not: and yet he talked wisely, and in the street too.
P. Hen. Thou didst well; for Wisdom cries out
in the streets, and no man regards it.
Fal. O, thou hast damnable iteration; indeed, able to corrupt a saint. Thou hast done much harm upon me, Hal,-God forgive thee for it! Before I knew thee, Hal, I knew nothing; and now am I, if a man should speak truly, little better than one of the wicked. I must give over this life, and I will give it over; by the Lord, an I do not, I am a villain. I'll be damned for never a king's son in Christendom.
P. Hen. Where shall we take a purse to-morrow, Jack?
Fal. Where thou wilt, lad; I'll make one: an I do not, call me villain, and baffle me.?
P. Hen. I see a good amendment of life in thee; from praying to purse-taking.
Enter POINS at a distance.
Fal. Why, Hal, 'tis my vocation, Hal; 'tis no sin for a man to labor in his vocation. Poins!Now shall we know if Gadshill have set a match.3 O, if men were to be saved by merit, what hole in hell were hot enough for him? This is the most
1 Citation of holy texts. 2 i. e. treat me with igno niny. Made an appointment.