List iconHenry IV, Part 1List icon

Henry IV, Part 1
Act 2, scene 1

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Contents

Characters in the Play

Entire Play

Henry IV, Part 1, culminates in the battle of Shrewsbury between the king’s army and rebels seeking his crown. The…

Act 1, scene 1

King Henry meets with his advisers to discuss his proposed crusade to the Holy Land, but the discussion turns instead…

Act 1, scene 2

Prince Hal and Sir John Falstaff taunt each other, Hal warning Falstaff that he will one day be hanged as…

Act 1, scene 3

King Henry meets with Hotspur, Hotspur’s father (Northumberland), and his uncle (Worcester) to demand that Hotspur yield his prisoners to…

Act 2, scene 1

Gadshill, the “setter” for Falstaff and his fellow thieves, seeks information at an inn about the travelers whom they plan…

Act 2, scene 2

Falstaff, Peto, Bardolph, and Gadshill rob the travelers and are, in turn, robbed by Prince Hal and Poins in disguise.

Act 2, scene 3

Hotspur reads a letter from a nobleman who refuses to join the rebellion against King Henry. Lady Percy enters to…

Act 2, scene 4

At a tavern in Eastcheap, Prince Hal and Poins amuse themselves by tormenting a young waiter while waiting for Falstaff…

Act 3, scene 1

Hotspur, Worcester, Mortimer, and the leader of the Welsh rebels, Glendower, meet in Wales to make final the terms of…

Act 3, scene 2

Prince Hal reconciles himself with his father by swearing to fight the rebels and to defeat Hotspur.

Act 3, scene 3

Falstaff tries to swindle the Hostess of the inn. Prince Hal offers Falstaff a command in the infantry.

Act 4, scene 1

Hotspur, Worcester, and Douglas learn that Hotspur’s father, Northumberland, is too sick to join them in the coming battle. They…

Act 4, scene 2

Falstaff discloses to the audience how he has misused his commission as an officer to take money from men eager…

Act 4, scene 3

As Hotspur argues with his fellow commanders about when to fight, they are visited by Sir Walter Blunt, who brings…

Act 4, scene 4

The archbishop of York and Sir Michael, who sympathize with Hotspur, debate the chances of his success against the king’s…

Act 5, scene 1

Worcester and Vernon visit the king’s camp, where Worcester repeats the grievances that he says have led to the rebellion….

Act 5, scene 2

Worcester lies to Hotspur, telling him that the king made no offer of pardon and is ready to begin the…

Act 5, scene 3

The battle begins. Douglas kills Blunt, who is disguised as King Henry. Falstaff enters alone to disclose to the audience…

Act 5, scene 4

Prince Hal saves King Henry from death at the hands of Douglas. Hal then meets Hotspur. While they are fighting,…

Act 5, scene 5

The king’s forces having won, King Henry condemns Worcester and Vernon to death, and the king and his supporters prepare…

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Scene 1
Enter a Carrier with a lantern in his hand.

FIRST CARRIER Heigh-ho! An it be not four by the day,
 I’ll be hanged. Charles’s Wain is over the new
 chimney, and yet our horse not packed.—What,
 ostler!
OSTLER5Anon, anon.
FIRST CARRIER I prithee, Tom, beat Cut’s saddle. Put a
 few flocks in the point. Poor jade is wrung in the
 withers out of all cess.

Enter another Carrier, with a lantern.

SECOND CARRIER Peas and beans are as dank here as a
10 dog, and that is the next way to give poor jades the
 bots. This house is turned upside down since Robin
 ostler died.
FIRST CARRIER Poor fellow never joyed since the price
 of oats rose. It was the death of him.
SECOND CARRIER 15I think this be the most villainous
 house in all London road for fleas. I am stung like a
 tench.
FIRST CARRIER Like a tench? By the Mass, there is
 ne’er a king christen could be better bit than I have
20 been since the first cock.
SECOND CARRIER Why, they will allow us ne’er a jordan,
51

53
Henry IV, Part I
ACT 2. SC. 1

 and then we leak in your chimney, and your
 chamber-lye breeds fleas like a loach.
FIRST CARRIER What, ostler, come away and be
25 hanged. Come away.
SECOND CARRIER I have a gammon of bacon and two
 races of ginger to be delivered as far as Charing
 Cross.
FIRST CARRIER God’s body, the turkeys in my pannier
30 are quite starved.—What, ostler! A plague on thee!
 Hast thou never an eye in thy head? Canst not hear?
 An ’twere not as good deed as drink to break the
 pate on thee, I am a very villain. Come, and be
 hanged. Hast no faith in thee?

Enter Gadshill.

GADSHILL 35Good morrow, carriers. What’s o’clock?
FIRST CARRIER I think it be two o’clock.
GADSHILL I prithee, lend me thy lantern to see my
 gelding in the stable.
FIRST CARRIER Nay, by God, soft. I know a trick worth
40 two of that, i’ faith.
GADSHILLI pray thee, lend me
 thine.
SECOND CARRIER Ay, when, canst tell? “Lend me thy
 lantern,” quoth he. Marry, I’ll see thee hanged
45 first.
GADSHILL Sirrah carrier, what time do you mean to
 come to London?
SECOND CARRIER Time enough to go to bed with a
 candle, I warrant thee. Come, neighbor Mugs,
50 we’ll call up the gentlemen. They will along with
 company, for they have great charge.
Carriers exit.
GADSHILL What ho, chamberlain!

Enter Chamberlain.


55
Henry IV, Part I
ACT 2. SC. 1

CHAMBERLAIN At hand, quoth pickpurse.
GADSHILL That’s even as fair as “at hand, quoth the
55 Chamberlain,” for thou variest no more from
 picking of purses than giving direction doth from
 laboring: thou layest the plot how.
CHAMBERLAIN Good morrow, Master Gadshill. It holds
 current that I told you yesternight: there’s a franklin
60 in the Wild of Kent hath brought three hundred
 marks with him in gold. I heard him tell it to one of
 his company last night at supper—a kind of auditor,
 one that hath abundance of charge too, God knows
 what. They are up already and call for eggs and
65 butter. They will away presently.
GADSHILL Sirrah, if they meet not with Saint Nicholas’
 clerks, I’ll give thee this neck.
CHAMBERLAIN No, I’ll none of it. I pray thee, keep that
 for the hangman, for I know thou worshipest Saint
70 Nicholas as truly as a man of falsehood may.
GADSHILL What talkest thou to me of the hangman? If
 I hang, I’ll make a fat pair of gallows, for if I hang,
 old Sir John hangs with me, and thou knowest he is
 no starveling. Tut, there are other Troyans that
75 thou dream’st not of, the which for sport sake are
 content to do the profession some grace, that
 would, if matters should be looked into, for their
 own credit sake make all whole. I am joined with no
 foot-land-rakers, no long-staff sixpenny strikers,
80 none of these mad mustachio purple-hued malt-worms,
 but with nobility and tranquillity, burgomasters
 and great oneyers, such as can hold in, such
 as will strike sooner than speak, and speak sooner
 than drink, and drink sooner than pray, and yet,
85 zounds, I lie, for they pray continually to their saint
 the commonwealth, or rather not pray to her but
 prey on her, for they ride up and down on her and
 make her their boots.

57
Henry IV, Part I
ACT 2. SC. 2

CHAMBERLAIN What, the commonwealth their boots?
90 Will she hold out water in foul way?
GADSHILL She will, she will. Justice hath liquored her.
 We steal as in a castle, cocksure. We have the
 receipt of fern seed; we walk invisible.
CHAMBERLAIN Nay, by my faith, I think you are more
95 beholding to the night than to fern seed for your
 walking invisible.
GADSHILL Give me thy hand. Thou shalt have a share in
 our purchase, as I am a true man.
CHAMBERLAIN Nay, rather let me have it as you are a
100 false thief.
GADSHILL Go to. Homo is a common name to all men.
 Bid the ostler bring my gelding out of the stable.
 Farewell, you muddy knave.
They exit.