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If any rebel or vain spirit of mine
Did, with the least affection of a welcome,
Give entertainment to the might of it,
Let God for ever keep it from my head!
And make me as the poorest vassal is,
That doth with awe and terror kneel to it!
O, my son!
Heaven put it in thy mind, to take it hence,
That thou might'st win the more thy father's love,
Pleading so wisely in excuse of it.
Come hither, Harry, sit thou by my bed;
And hear, I think, the very latest counsel
That ever I shall breathe. Heaven knows, my son,
By what by-paths, and indirect crook'd ways,
I met this crown; and I myself know well,
How troublesome it sat upon my head:
To thee it shall descend with better quiet,
Better opinion, better confirmation;
For all the soil* of the achievement goes
With me into the earth. It seem'd in me,
But as an honour snatch'd with boisterous hand:
And I had many living to upbraid
My gain of it by their assistances;
Which daily grew to quarrel and to bloodshed,
Wounding supposed peace: all these bold fears†,
Thou see'st, with peril I have answered:
For all my reign hath been but as a scene
Acting that argument; and now my death
Changes the mode‡: for what in me was purchas'd §,
Falls upon thee in a more fairer sort;
So thou the garland wear'st successively.
Yet, though thou stand'st more sure than I could do,
Thou art not firm enough, since griefs are green;
And all thy friends, which thou must make thy friends,
Have but their stings and teeth newly ta'en out;
By whose fell working I was first advanc'd,
And by whose power I well might lodge a fear
To be again displac'd; which to avoid,
State of things. Purchase, in Shakspeare, frequently means stolen goods.
I cut them off; and had a purpose now
To lead out many to the Holy Land;
Lest rest, and lying still, might make them look
Too near unto my state. Therefore, my Harry,
Be it thy course, to busy giddy minds
With foreign quarrels; that action, hence borne out,
May waste the memory of the former days.
More would I, but my lungs are wasted so,
That strength of speech is utterly denied me.
How I came by the crown, O God, forgive!
And grant it may with thee in true peace live!
My gracious liege,
You won it, wore it, kept it, gave it me;
Then plain and right must my possession be:
Which I, with more than with a common pain,
'Gainst all the world will rightfully maintain.
ADDRESS OF THE CHIEF JUSTICE TO KING HENRY V. WHOM HE HAD IMPRISONED.
Be you contented, wearing now the garland *,
To have a son set your decrees at nought;
To pluck down justice from your awful bench;
To trip the course of law, and blunt the sword
That guards the peace and safety of your person:
Nay, more; to spurn at your most royal image,
And mock your workings in a second body †.
Question your royal thoughts, make the case yours;
Be now the father, and propose a son:
Hear your own dignity so much profan'd,
See your most dreadful laws so loosely slighted,
Behold yourself so by a son disdained;
And then imagine me taking your part,
And, in your power, soft silencing your son.
+ Treat with contempt your acts executed by a representative.
INVOCATION TO THE MUSE,
O, FOR a muse of fire, that would ascend
The brightest heaven of invention!
A kingdom for a stage, princes to act,
And monarchs to behold the swelling scene!
Then should the warlike Harry, like himself,
Assume the port of Mars; and, at his heels,
Leash'd in like hounds, should famine, sword, and fire,
Crouch for employment.
CONSIDERATION like an angel came,
And whipp'd the offending Adam out of him;
Leaving his body as a paradise,
To envelop and contain celestial spirits.
PERFECTIONS OF KING HENRY V.
Hear him but reason in divinity,
And, all-admiring, with an inward wish
You would desire, the king were made a prelate;
Hear him debate of commonwealth affairs,
You would say,-it hath been all-in-all his study:
List* his discourse of war, and you shall hear
A fearful battle render'd you in music:
Turn him to any cause of policy,
The Gordian knot of it he will unloose,
Familiar as his garter; that, when he speaks,
The air, a charter'd libertine, is still,
And the mute wonder lurketh in men's ears,
To steal his sweet and honeyed sentences.
THE COMMONWEALTH OF BEES.
So work the honey bees;
Creatures, that, by a rule in nature, teach
The act of order to a peopled kingdom.
They have a king, and officers of sorts*:
Where some, like magistrates, correct at home;
Others, like merchants, venture trade abroad;
Others, like soldiers, armed in their stings,
Make boot upon the summer's velvet buds;
Which pillage they with merry march bring home
To the tent-royal of their emperor:
Who, busied in his majesty, surveys
The singing masons building roofs of gold;
The civil citizens kneading up the honey;
And poor mechanic porters crowding in
Their heavy burdens at his narrow gate;
The sad-ey'd justice, with his surly hum,
Delivering o'er to executors ‡ pale
The lazy yawning drone.
Now all the youth of England are on fire,
And silken dalliance in the wardrobe lies;
Now thrive the armourers, and honour's thought
Reigns solely in the breast of every man:
They sell the pasture now to buy the horse;
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,
-Promis'd to Harry, and his followers.
* Different degrees. + Sober,
APOSTROPHE TO ENGLAND.
O England!-model to thy inward greatness, Like little body with a mighty heart,
What might'st thou do, that honour would thee do,
Were all thy children kind and natural!
But see thy fault! France hath in thee found out
A nest of hollow bosoms, which he* fills
With treacherous crowns.
O, how hast thou with jealousy infected
The sweetness of affiance! Show men dutiful?
Why, so didst thou: Seem they grave and learned?
Why, so didst thou: Come they of noble family?
Why, so didst thou: Seem they religious?
Why, so didst thou: Or are they spare in diet;
Free from gross passion, or of mirth, or anger;
Constant in spirit, not swerving with the blood;
Garnish'd and deck'd in modest complement+;
Not working with the eye, without the ear,
And, but in purged judgment, trusting neither?
Such, and so finely bolted † didst thou seem:
And thus thy fall hath left a kind of blot,
To mark the full-fraught man, and best indued §,
With some suspicion.
DAME QUICKLY'S ACCOUNT OF FALSTAFF'S DEATH.
'A made a finer end, and went away, an it had been any christom || child; 'a parted even just between twelve and one, e'en at turning o' the tide; for after I saw him fumble with the sheets, and play with flowers, and smile upon his fingers' ends, I knew there was but one way; for his nose was as sharp as a pen, and 'a babbled of green fields. How now, Sir John? quoth I: what, man! be of good cheer. So 'a cried out-God, God, God! three or four * i. e. The king of France. † Accomplishment. + Sifted. § Endowed. A child not more than a month old.