List iconHenry IV, Part 2List icon

Henry IV, Part 2
Act 1, scene 3

Synopsis:

Contents

Characters in the Play

Entire Play

Henry IV, Part 2, continues the story of Henry IV, Part I. Northumberland learns that his son Hotspur is dead, and…

Induction

Following the battle of Shrewsbury (where King Henry and Prince Hal were victorious and Hotspur killed), Rumor spreads the false…

Act 1, scene 1

Northumberland, who had pleaded illness as an excuse for not appearing at the battle of Shrewsbury, learns that his son,…

Act 1, scene 2

Sir John Falstaff is confronted by the Lord Chief Justice. Since Falstaff has come away from Shrewsbury with the reputation…

Act 1, scene 3

At York, the Archbishop discusses with Mowbray, Hastings, and Lord Bardolph whether they can defeat the king’s forces if their…

Act 2, scene 1

Sir John is arrested for the debt he owes Mistress Quickly. He persuades her to drop the charges and to…

Act 2, scene 2

Learning that Falstaff will be dining that night in Eastcheap, Prince Hal and Poins decide to disguise themselves as waiters…

Act 2, scene 3

Northumberland is persuaded by his daughter-in-law, Hotspur’s widow, to abandon the other rebels.

Act 2, scene 4

At Mistress Quickly’s inn in Eastcheap, a fight erupts after Falstaff ’s ensign, Pistol, insults Doll Tearsheet. The disguised Prince Hal…

Act 3, scene 1

An ill and anxious King Henry IV consults with Warwick.

Act 3, scene 2

On his journey through Gloucestershire, Falstaff selects recruits for the army and decides that, on his return, he will fleece…

Act 4, scene 1

The leaders of the rebellion reach Gaultree Forest, where they present their grievances to Westmoreland. After Prince John promises redress…

Act 4, scene 2

Falstaff meets a rebel knight, who surrenders to him. When Prince John reproaches Falstaff for his late arrival, Falstaff turns…

Act 4, scene 3

Just after receiving the good news about the defeat of all the rebel forces, Henry IV falls into a swoon….

Act 5, scene 1

Falstaff observes Shallow and his servants in order to be ready to entertain Prince Hal with amusing stories.

Act 5, scene 2

Prince Hal reassures an anxious Lord Chief Justice.

Act 5, scene 3

On the news of Henry IV’s death, Falstaff and Shallow set off joyfully for London.

Act 5, scene 4

Doll Tearsheet is arrested.

Act 5, scene 5

The newly crowned King Henry V keeps his word to the Lord Chief Justice.

Epilogue

The speaker apologizes for the play and promises another play with Falstaff in it.

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Scene 3
Enter th’ Archbishop of York, Thomas Mowbray (Earl
Marshal), the Lord Hastings, and Lord Bardolph.


ARCHBISHOP 
 Thus have you heard our cause and known our
 means,
 And, my most noble friends, I pray you all
 Speak plainly your opinions of our hopes.
5 And first, Lord Marshal, what say you to it?
MOWBRAY 
 I well allow the occasion of our arms,
 But gladly would be better satisfied
 How in our means we should advance ourselves
 To look with forehead bold and big enough
10 Upon the power and puissance of the King.
HASTINGS 
 Our present musters grow upon the file

43
Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 1. SC. 3

 To five-and-twenty thousand men of choice,
 And our supplies live largely in the hope
 Of great Northumberland, whose bosom burns
15 With an incensèd fire of injuries.
LORD BARDOLPH 
 The question, then, Lord Hastings, standeth thus:
 Whether our present five-and-twenty thousand
 May hold up head without Northumberland.
HASTINGS 
 With him we may.
LORD BARDOLPH 20 Yea, marry, there’s the point.
 But if without him we be thought too feeble,
 My judgment is we should not step too far
 Till we had his assistance by the hand.
 For in a theme so bloody-faced as this,
25 Conjecture, expectation, and surmise
 Of aids incertain should not be admitted.
ARCHBISHOP 
 ’Tis very true, Lord Bardolph, for indeed
 It was young Hotspur’s cause at Shrewsbury.
LORD BARDOLPH 
 It was, my lord; who lined himself with hope,
30 Eating the air and promise of supply,
 Flatt’ring himself in project of a power
 Much smaller than the smallest of his thoughts,
 And so, with great imagination
 Proper to madmen, led his powers to death
35 And, winking, leapt into destruction.
HASTINGS 
 But, by your leave, it never yet did hurt
 To lay down likelihoods and forms of hope.
LORD BARDOLPH 
 Yes, if this present quality of war —
 Indeed the instant action, a cause on foot—
40 Lives so in hope, as in an early spring
 We see th’ appearing buds, which to prove fruit

45
Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 1. SC. 3

 Hope gives not so much warrant as despair
 That frosts will bite them. When we mean to build,
 We first survey the plot, then draw the model,
45 And when we see the figure of the house,
 Then must we rate the cost of the erection,
 Which if we find outweighs ability,
 What do we then but draw anew the model
 In fewer offices, or at least desist
50 To build at all? Much more in this great work,
 Which is almost to pluck a kingdom down
 And set another up, should we survey
 The plot of situation and the model,
 Consent upon a sure foundation,
55 Question surveyors, know our own estate,
 How able such a work to undergo,
 To weigh against his opposite. Or else
 We fortify in paper and in figures,
 Using the names of men instead of men,
60 Like one that draws the model of an house
 Beyond his power to build it, who, half through,
 Gives o’er and leaves his part-created cost
 A naked subject to the weeping clouds
 And waste for churlish winter’s tyranny.
HASTINGS 
65 Grant that our hopes, yet likely of fair birth,
 Should be stillborn and that we now possessed
 The utmost man of expectation,
 I think we are a body strong enough,
 Even as we are, to equal with the King.
LORD BARDOLPH 
70 What, is the King but five-and-twenty thousand?
HASTINGS 
 To us no more, nay, not so much, Lord Bardolph,
 For his divisions, as the times do brawl,
 Are in three heads: one power against the French,
 And one against Glendower; perforce a third

47
Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 1. SC. 3

75 Must take up us. So is the unfirm king
 In three divided, and his coffers sound
 With hollow poverty and emptiness.
ARCHBISHOP 
 That he should draw his several strengths together
 And come against us in full puissance
80 Need not to be dreaded.
HASTINGS  If he should do so,
 He leaves his back unarmed, the French and Welsh
 Baying him at the heels. Never fear that.
LORD BARDOLPH 
 Who is it like should lead his forces hither?
HASTINGS 
85 The Duke of Lancaster and Westmoreland;
 Against the Welsh, himself and Harry Monmouth;
 But who is substituted against the French
 I have no certain notice.
ARCHBISHOP  Let us on,
90 And publish the occasion of our arms.
 The commonwealth is sick of their own choice.
 Their over-greedy love hath surfeited.
 An habitation giddy and unsure
 Hath he that buildeth on the vulgar heart.
95 O thou fond many, with what loud applause
 Didst thou beat heaven with blessing Bolingbroke
 Before he was what thou wouldst have him be.
 And being now trimmed in thine own desires,
 Thou, beastly feeder, art so full of him
100 That thou provok’st thyself to cast him up.
 So, so, thou common dog, didst thou disgorge
 Thy glutton bosom of the royal Richard,
 And now thou wouldst eat thy dead vomit up
 And howl’st to find it. What trust is in these
105 times?
 They that, when Richard lived, would have him die
 Are now become enamored on his grave.

49
Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 1. SC. 3

 Thou, that threw’st dust upon his goodly head
 When through proud London he came sighing on
110 After th’ admirèd heels of Bolingbroke,
 Criest now “O earth, yield us that king again,
 And take thou this!” O thoughts of men accursed!
 Past and to come seems best; things present,
 worst.
MOWBRAY 
115 Shall we go draw our numbers and set on?
HASTINGS 
 We are time’s subjects, and time bids begone.
They exit.