« AnteriorContinua »
Up to the ears in blood. I am on fire,
horse, Who is to bear me, like a thunderbolt, Against the bosom of the prince of Wales: Harry to Harry shall, hot horse to horse, Meet, and ne'er part, till one drop down a corse.O, that Glendower were come!
ACT V. PRINCE HENRY'S MODEST CHALLENGE. Tell your nephew, The prince of Wales doth join with all the world In praise of Henry Percy: By my hopes,This present enterprise set off his head, I do not think a braver gentleman, More active-valiant, or more valiant-young, More daring, or more bold, is now alive, To grace this latter
with noble deeds.
FALSTAFF'S CATECHISM. Well, 'tis no matter: Honour pricks me on. Yea, but how if honour prick me off when I come on? how then? Can honour set to a leg? No. Or an arm? No.
Or take away the grief of a wound? No. Honour hath no skill in surgery
What is honour? A word. What is in that word? Honour. What is that honour? Air. A trim reckoning.- Who bath it? He that died o' Wednesday. Doth he feel it? No. Doth he hear it? No. Is it insensible then? Yea, to the dead. But will it not live with the living? No. Why? Detraction will not suffer it:—therefore I'll none of it. Honour is a mere escutcheon*, and so ends my catechism.
LIFE DEMANDS ACTION.
O gentlemen, the time of life is short;
PRINCE HENRY'S PATHETIC SPEECH ON THE DEATH
Brave Percy, fare thee well. Ill-weav'd ambition, how much art thou shrunk! When that this body did contain a spirit, A kingdom for it was too small a bound; But now, two paces of the vilest earth Is room enough:—This earth, that bears thee dead, Bears not alive so stout a gentleman. If thou wert sensible of
courtesy, I should not make so dear a show of zeal: But let my favourst hide thy mangled face; And even in thy behalf, I'll thank myself For doing these fair rites of tenderness. Adieu, and take thy praise with thee to heaven! Thy ignominy sleep with thee in the grave, But not remember'd in thy epitaph! * Painted heraldry in funerals. † Scarf, with which he covers Percy's face.
KING HENRY IV.
I, from the orient to the drooping west,
After him, came, spurring hard,
A gentleman almost forspent* with speed,
MESSENGER WITH ILL NEWS.
This man's brow, like to a title-leaf, Foretells the nature of a tragic volume: So looks the strond, whereon the imperious flood Hath left a witness'd usurpationt. Thou tremblest; and the whiteness in thy cheek Is apter than thy tongue to tell thy errand. Even such a man, so faint, so spiritless, So dull, so dead in look, so woe-begone, Drew Priam's curtain in the dead of night, Andwould have told him, halfhis Troy was burn'd. — I see a strange confession in thine
eye: Thou shak'st thy head, and hold'st it fear, or sin, To speak a truth. If he be slain, say so: The tongue offends not that reports his death: And he doth sin that does belie the dead; Not he, which
the dead is not alive. Yet the first bringer of unwelcome news Hath but a losing office; and his tongue Sounds ever after as a sullen bell, Remember'd knolling a departing friend. * Exhausted. of An attestation of its ravage.
GREATER GRIEFS DESTROY THE LESS.
As the wretch, whose fever-weaken'd joints, Like strengthless hinges buckle under life, Impatient of his fit, breaks like a fire Out of his keeper's arms; even so my limbs, Weaken'd with grief, being now enrag'd with grief, Are thrice themselves: hence therefore, thou nice* A scaly gauntlet now, with joints of steel, [crutch; Must glove this hand: and hence, thou sickly quoift, Thou art a guard too wanton for the head, Which princes, flesh'd with conquest, aim to hit. Now bind my brows with iron; and approach The ragged'st hour that time and spite dare bring, To frown
the enrag'd Northumberland! Let heaven kiss earth! Now let not nature's hand Keep the wild flood confin’d! let order die! And let this world no longer be a stage, To feed contention in a lingering act; But let one spirit of the first-born Cain Reign in all bosoms, that, each heart being set On bloody courses, the rude scene may end, And darkness be the burier of the dead!
THE FICKLENESS OF THE VULGAR.
An habitation giddy and unsure Hath he that buildeth on the vulgar heart. O thou fond manyt! with what loud applause Didst thou beat heaven with blessing Bolingbroke, Before he was what thou wouldst have him be? And being now trimm'ds in thine own desires, Thou, beastly feeder, art so full of him, That thou provok’st thyself to cast him up.