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The badges of his grief and patience,
That had not God for some strong purpose steel’d
The hearts of men, they must perforce have melted,
And barbarism itself have pitied him.
VIOLETS. Who are the violets now, That strew the green lap of the new-come spring?
A SOLILOQUY IN PRISON. I have been studying how I may compare This prison, where I live, unto the world: And, for because the world is populous, And here is not a creature but myself, I cannot do it;—Yet I'll hammer it out. My brain I'll prove the female to my soul; My soul, the father: and these two beget A generation of still-breeding thoughts, And these same thoughts people this little world* In humours, like the people of this world, For no thought is contented.
Thoughts tending to content, flatter themselves,
That they are not the first of fortune's slaves,
Nor shall not be the last; like silly beggars,
Who, sitting in the stocks, refuge their shame,
That many have, and others must sit there:
And in this thought they find a kind of ease,
Bearing their own misfortune on the back.
Of such as have before endur'd the like,
Thus play I, in one person, many people,
And none contented: Sometimes am I king,
Then treason makes me wish myself a beggar,
And so I am: Then crushing penury
Persuades me I was better when a king;
Then am I king'd again: and, by-and-by,
Think that I am unking'd by Bolingbroke,
And straight am nothing :-But, whate'er I am,
Nor I, nor any man, that but man is,
With nothing shall be pleas'd, till he be eas'd
With being nothing.
So shaken as we are, so wan with care,
Find we a time for frighted peace to pant,
And breathe short-winded accents of new broils
To be commenc'd in stronds* afar remote.
No more the thirsty Erinnyst of this soil
Shall daub her lips with her own children's blood;
No more shall trenching war channel her fields,
Nor bruise her flow'rets with the armed hoofs
Of hostile paces: those opposed eyes,
Which, like the meteors of a troubled heaven,
All of one nature, of one substance bred,
Did lately meet in the intestine shock
And furious close of civil butchery,
Shall now, in mutual, well-beseeming ranks,
March all one way; and be no more oppos'd
Against acquaintance, kindred, and allies :
The edge of war, like an ill-sheathed knife,
No more shall cut his master,
* Strands, banks of the sea. * The fury of discord.
KING HENRY'S CHARACTER OF, PERCY, AND OF HIS
SON PRINCE HENRY. Yea, there thou mak'st me sad, and mak'st me sin In envy that my
Should be the father of so bless'd a son:
A son, who is the theme of honour's tongue;
Amongst a grove, the very straightest plant;
Who is sweet fortune's minion, and her pride:
Whilst I, by looking on the praise of him,
See riot and dishonour stain the brow
Of my young Harry.
PRINCE HENRY'S SOLILOQUY.
I know you all, and will a while uphold
The unyok'd humour of your idleness:
Yet herein will I imitate the sun;
Who doth permit the base contagious clouds
To smother up his beauty from the world,
That, when he please again to be himself,
Being wanted, he may be more wonder'd at,
By breaking through the foul and ugly mists
Of vapours that did seem to strangle him.
If all the year were playing holidays,
To sport would be as tedious as to work;
But, when they seldom come, they wish'd for come,
And nothing pleaseth but rare accidents.
So, when this loose behaviour I throw off,
the debt I never promised, By how much better than my word I am, By so much shall I falsify men's hopes* ; And like bright metal on a sullent ground, My reformation, glittering o'er my fault, Shall show more goodly, and attract more eyes,
Than that which hath no foil to set it off.
I'll so offend, to make offence a skill;
Redeeming time, when men think least I will.
HOTSPUR'S DESCRIPTION OF A FINICAL COURTIER.
But I remember, when the fight was done,
When I was dry with rage
and extreme toil,
Breathless and faint, leaning upon my sword,
Came there a certain lord, neat, trimly dress’d,
Fresh as a bridegroom; and his chin new reap'd,
Show'd like a stubble land at harvest home;
He was perfumed like a milliner;
And 'twixt his finger and his thumb he held
A pouncet box*, which ever and anon
his nose and took’t away again;
Who, therewith angry, when it next came there,
Took it in snuff:—and still he smil'd, and talk'd;
And, as the soldiers bore dead bodies by,
He call’d them—untaught knaves, unmannerly,
To bring a slovenly unhandsome corse
Betwixt the wind and his nobility.
With many holiday and lady terms
He question'd me; among
the rest demanded My prisoners, in your majesty's behalf. I then, all smarting, with my wounds being cold, To be so pester'd with a popinjayt, Out of my grief and my impatience, Answer'd neglectingly, I know not what; He should, or he should not;—for he made me mad, To see him shine so brisk, and smell so sweet, And talk so like a waiting gentlewoman, [mark!) Of guns, and drums, and wounds, (God save the And telling me, the sovereign'st thing on earth Was parmaceti, for an inward bruise; * A small box for musk or other perfumes. + Parrot. # Pain.
And that it was great pity, so it was,
That villanous salt-petre should be digg'd
Out of the bowels of the harmless earth,
Which many a good tall* fellow had destroy'd
So cowardly: and, but for these vile guns,
He would himself have been a soldier.
I'll read you matter deep and dangerous;
As full of peril, and advent'rous spirit,
As to o'erwalk a current, roaring loud,
On the unsteadfast footing of a spear.
By heaven, methinks, it were an easy leap, To pluck bright honour from the pale-fac'd moon; Or dive into the bottom of the deep, Where fathom-line could never touch the ground, And pluck up drowned honour by the locks; So he, that doth redeem her thence, might wear, Without corrivalt, all her dignities: But out upon this half-fac'd fellowship!
ACT II. LADY PERCY'S PATHETIC SPEECH TO HER HUSBAND.
O my good lord, why are you thus alone? For what offence have I, this fortnight, been A banish'd woman from my Harry's bed? Tell me, sweet lord, what is't that takes from thee Thy stomach, pleasure, and thy golden sleep? Why dost thou bend thine eyes upon the earth; And start so often when thou sit'st alone? Why hast thou lost the fresh blood in thy cheeks; * Brave. + A rival.