List iconHenry IV, Part 1List icon

Henry IV, Part 1
Act 2, scene 3

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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 3
Enter Hotspur alone, reading a letter.

HOTSPUR But, for mine own part, my lord, I could be
 well contented to be there, in respect of the love I
 bear your house.
 He could be contented; why is he
 not, then? In respect of the love he bears our
5 house—he shows in this he loves his own barn
 better than he loves our house. Let me see some
 more. The purpose you undertake is dangerous.
 Why, that’s certain. ’Tis dangerous to take a cold,
 to sleep, to drink; but I tell you, my Lord Fool, out
10 of this nettle, danger, we pluck this flower, safety.
 The purpose you undertake is dangerous, the friends
 you have named uncertain, the time itself unsorted,
 and your whole plot too light for the counterpoise
 of so great an opposition.
 Say you so, say you so?
15 I say unto you again, you are a shallow, cowardly
 hind, and you lie. What a lack-brain is this! By

67
Henry IV, Part I
ACT 2. SC. 3

 the Lord, our plot is a good plot as ever was laid,
 our friends true and constant—a good plot,
 good friends, and full of expectation; an excellent
20 plot, very good friends. What a frosty-spirited
 rogue is this! Why, my Lord of York commends
 the plot and the general course of the action.
 Zounds, an I were now by this rascal, I could brain
 him with his lady’s fan. Is there not my father, my
25 uncle, and myself, Lord Edmund Mortimer, my
 Lord of York, and Owen Glendower? Is there not
 besides the Douglas? Have I not all their letters to
 meet me in arms by the ninth of the next month,
 and are they not some of them set forward already?
30 What a pagan rascal is this—an infidel! Ha, you
 shall see now, in very sincerity of fear and cold
 heart, will he to the King and lay open all our
 proceedings. O, I could divide myself and go to
 buffets for moving such a dish of skim milk with so
35 honorable an action! Hang him, let him tell the
 King. We are prepared. I will set forward tonight.

Enter his Lady.

 How now, Kate? I must leave you within these two
 hours.
LADY PERCY 
 O my good lord, why are you thus alone?
40 For what offense have I this fortnight been
 A banished 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
45 And start so often when thou sit’st alone?
 Why hast thou lost the fresh blood in thy cheeks
 And given my treasures and my rights of thee
 To thick-eyed musing and curst melancholy?
 In thy faint slumbers I by thee have watched,

69
Henry IV, Part I
ACT 2. SC. 3

50 And heard thee murmur tales of iron wars,
 Speak terms of manage to thy bounding steed,
 Cry “Courage! To the field!” And thou hast talked
 Of sallies and retires, of trenches, tents,
 Of palisadoes, frontiers, parapets,
55 Of basilisks, of cannon, culverin,
 Of prisoners’ ransom, and of soldiers slain,
 And all the currents of a heady fight.
 Thy spirit within thee hath been so at war,
 And thus hath so bestirred thee in thy sleep,
60 That beads of sweat have stood upon thy brow
 Like bubbles in a late-disturbèd stream,
 And in thy face strange motions have appeared,
 Such as we see when men restrain their breath
 On some great sudden hest. O, what portents are
65 these?
 Some heavy business hath my lord in hand,
 And I must know it, else he loves me not.
HOTSPUR 
 What, ho!

Enter a Servant.

 Is Gilliams with the packet gone?
SERVANT 70He is, my lord, an hour ago.
HOTSPUR 
 Hath Butler brought those horses from the sheriff?
SERVANT 
 One horse, my lord, he brought even now.
HOTSPUR 
 What horse? A roan, a crop-ear, is it not?
SERVANT 
 It is, my lord.
HOTSPUR 75 That roan shall be my throne.
 Well, I will back him straight. O, Esperance!
 Bid Butler lead him forth into the park.
Servant exits.

71
Henry IV, Part I
ACT 2. SC. 3

LADY PERCY But hear you, my lord.
HOTSPUR What say’st thou, my lady?
LADY PERCY 80What is it carries you away?
HOTSPUR Why, my horse, my love, my horse.
LADY PERCY Out, you mad-headed ape!
 A weasel hath not such a deal of spleen
 As you are tossed with. In faith,
85 I’ll know your business, Harry, that I will.
 I fear my brother Mortimer doth stir
 About his title, and hath sent for you
 To line his enterprise; but if you go—
HOTSPUR 
 So far afoot, I shall be weary, love.
LADY PERCY 
90 Come, come, you paraquito, answer me
 Directly unto this question that I ask.
 In faith, I’ll break thy little finger, Harry,
 An if thou wilt not tell me all things true.
HOTSPUR Away!
95 Away, you trifler. Love, I love thee not.
 I care not for thee, Kate. This is no world
 To play with mammets and to tilt with lips.
 We must have bloody noses and cracked crowns,
 And pass them current too.—Gods me, my horse!—
100 What say’st thou, Kate? What wouldst thou have
 with me?
LADY PERCY 
 Do you not love me? Do you not indeed?
 Well, do not then, for since you love me not,
 I will not love myself. Do you not love me?
105 Nay, tell me if you speak in jest or no.
HOTSPUR Come, wilt thou see me ride?
 And when I am a-horseback I will swear
 I love thee infinitely. But hark you, Kate,
 I must not have you henceforth question me
110 Whither I go, nor reason whereabout.

73
Henry IV, Part I
ACT 2. SC. 4

 Whither I must, I must; and to conclude
 This evening must I leave you, gentle Kate.
 I know you wise, but yet no farther wise
 Than Harry Percy’s wife; constant you are,
115 But yet a woman; and for secrecy
 No lady closer, for I well believe
 Thou wilt not utter what thou dost not know,
 And so far will I trust thee, gentle Kate.
LADY PERCY How? So far?
HOTSPUR 
120 Not an inch further. But hark you, Kate,
 Whither I go, thither shall you go too.
 Today will I set forth, tomorrow you.
 Will this content you, Kate?
LADY PERCY  It must, of force.
They exit.