Imatges de pÓgina

And yours, the noble sinews of our power,—
France being ours, we 'll bend it to our awe,
Or break it all to pieces.

Or there we 'll sit,
Ruling, in large and ample empery,1

O'er France, and all her almost kingly dukedoms,
Or lay these bones in an unworthy urn,
Tombless, with no remembrance over them.
Either our history shall, with full mouth,
Speak freely of our acts; or else our grave,
Like Turkish mute, shall have a tongueless mouth,
Not worshipp'd with a paper epitaph.


Now are we well prepared to know the pleasure
Of our fair cousin Dauphin; for, we hear,
Your greeting is from him, not from the king.
Amb. May it please your majesty, to give us


Freely to render what we have in charge;

Or shall we sparingly show you far off

The Dauphin's meaning, and our embassy?

K. Hen. We are no tyrant, but a Christian king ; Unto whose grace our passion is as subject,

As are our wretches fetter'd in our prisons :

Therefore, with frank and with uncurbed plainness, Tell us the Dauphin's mind.


Thus then, in few.

1 Dominion.

2 Not mentioned in the annals of history.

Your highness, lately sending into France,

Did claim some certain dukedoms, in the right
Of your great predecessor, king Edward the third:
In answer of which claim, the prince our master

Says, that you savor too much of your youth;

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And bids you be advised, there's naught in France,
That can be with a nimble galliard 1 won;

You cannot revel into dukedoms there:
He therefore sends you, meeter for your spirit,
This tun of treasure; and, in lieu of this,
Desires you, let the dukedoms, that you claim,
Hear no more of you. This the Dauphin speaks.
K. Hen. What treasure, uncle?


Tennis-balls, my liege. K. Hen. We are glad the Dauphin is so pleasant with us:

present and

your pains we thank you for.
When we have match'd our rackets to these balls,
We will, in France, by God's grace, play a set,
Shall strike his father's crown into the hazard.2

Tell him, he hath made a match with such a


That all the courts of France will be disturb'd

With chaces. And we understand him well,

1 An ancient sprightly dance.

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2 The hazard is a place in the tennis-court, into which the ball is sometimes struck.'-Steevens.

3A chace, at tennis, is that spot where a ball falls, beyond which the adversary must strike his ball to gain a point or chace.'-Douce.

How he comes o'er us with our wilder days,
Not measuring what use we made of them.
We never valued this poor seat 1 of England;
And therefore, living hence, did give ourself
To barbarous license; as 'tis ever common,
That men are merriest when they are from home.
But tell the Dauphin,-I will keep my state;
Be like a king, and show my sail of greatness,
When I do rouse me in my throne of France:
For that I have laid by my majesty,
And plodded like a man for working-days;
But I will rise there with so full a glory,
That I will dazzle all the eyes of France,
Yea, strike the Dauphin blind to look on us.
And tell the pleasant prince,—this mock of his
Hath turn'd his balls to gun-stones; 2 and his soul
Shall stand sore charged for the wasteful vengeance
That shall fly with them; for many a thousand


Shall this his mock mock out of their dear husbands; Mock mothers from their sons, mock castles down;

And some are yet ungotten, and unborn,

That shall have cause to curse the Dauphin's scorn.
But this lies all within the will of God,
To whom I do appeal; and in whose name,
Tell you the Dauphin, I am coming on,
To venge me as I may, and to put forth

1 Throne.

2 Stone balls were formerly discharged from ordnance.

My rightful hand in a well-hallow'd cause.

So, get you hence in peace; and tell the Dauphin, His jest will savor but of shallow wit,

When thousands weep, more than did laugh at it. Convey them with safe conduct.-Fare you well. [Exeunt Ambassadors.

Exe. This was a merry message.

K. Hen. We hope to make the sender blush at it. [descends from his throne. Therefore, my lords, omit no happy hour, That may give furtherance to our expedition: For we have now no thought in us but France, Save those to God, that run before our business. Therefore, let our proportions for these wars Be soon collected; and all things thought upon, That may, with reasonable swiftness, add More feathers to our wings; for, God before, We'll chide this Dauphin at his father's door. Therefore, let every man now task his thought, That this fair action may on foot be brought.



Enter CHORus.

Cho. Now all the youth of England are on fire, And silken dalliance in the wardrobe lies; Now thrive the armorers, and honor's thought Reigns solely in the breast of every man : They sell the pasture now to buy the horse;

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Following the mirror of all Christian kings,
With winged heels, as English Mercuries :
For now sits Expectation in the air;

And hides a sword, from hilts unto the point,
With crowns imperial, crowns, and coronets,
Promised to Harry and his followers.
The French, advised by good intelligence
Of this most dreadful preparation,
Shake in their fear, and with pale policy
Seek to divert the English purposes.

O England!-model to thy inward greatness,
Like little body with a mighty heart,—

What mightst thou do, that honor would thee do, Were all thy children kind and natural!

But see thy fault! France1 hath in thee found out A nest of hollow bosoms, which he fills

With treacherous crowns; and three corrupted


One, Richard earl of Cambridge; and the second,
Henry Lord Scroop of Masham; and the third,
Sir Thomas Grey, knight of Northumberland ;-
Have, for the gilt 2 of France, (O guilt, indeed!)
Confirm'd conspiracy with fearful France;
And by their hands this grace of kings must die,
(If hell and treason hold their promises)
Ere he take ship for France, and in Southampton.
Linger your patience on; and well digest
The abuse of distance, while we force a play.

1 i. e. the king of France.

2 Gold.

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