List iconHenry IV, Part 2List icon

Henry IV, Part 2
Act 2, scene 1

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.

Include links to:

Images
Glosses
Audio
Video
Essays
Quill icon
Scene 1
Enter Hostess Quickly of the tavern with two Officers,
Fang and Snare, who lags behind.


HOSTESS Master Fang, have you entered the action?
FANG It is entered.
HOSTESS Where’s your yeoman? Is ’t a lusty yeoman?
 Will he stand to ’t?
FANG, calling 5Sirrah! Where’s Snare?
HOSTESS O Lord, ay, good Master Snare.
SNARE, catching up to them Here, here.
FANG Snare, we must arrest Sir John Falstaff.
HOSTESS Yea, good Master Snare, I have entered him
10 and all.
SNARE It may chance cost some of us our lives, for he
 will stab.
HOSTESS Alas the day, take heed of him. He stabbed me
 in mine own house, and that most beastly, in good
15 faith. He cares not what mischief he does. If his
 weapon be out, he will foin like any devil. He will
 spare neither man, woman, nor child.
FANG If I can close with him, I care not for his thrust.
HOSTESS No, nor I neither. I’ll be at your elbow.
FANG 20An I but fist him once, an he come but within my
 view—
HOSTESS I am undone by his going. I warrant you, he’s
53

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

 an infinitive thing upon my score. Good Master
 Fang, hold him sure. Good Master Snare, let him
25 not ’scape. He comes continuantly to Pie Corner,
 saving your manhoods, to buy a saddle, and he is
 indited to dinner to the Lubber’s Head in Lumbert
 Street, to Master Smooth’s the silkman. I pray you,
 since my exion is entered, and my case so openly
30 known to the world, let him be brought in to his
 answer. A hundred mark is a long one for a poor
 lone woman to bear, and I have borne, and borne,
 and borne, and have been fubbed off, and fubbed
 off, and fubbed off from this day to that day, that it is
35 a shame to be thought on. There is no honesty in
 such dealing, unless a woman should be made an
 ass and a beast to bear every knave’s wrong. Yonder
 he comes, and that arrant malmsey-nose knave,
 Bardolph, with him. Do your offices, do your offices,
40 Master Fang and Master Snare, do me, do me,
 do me your offices.

Enter Sir John Falstaff and Bardolph, and the Page.

FALSTAFF How now, whose mare’s dead? What’s the
 matter?
FANG Sir John, I arrest you at the suit of Mistress
45 Quickly.
FALSTAFF Away, varlets!—Draw, Bardolph. Cut me off
 the villain’s head. Throw the quean in the
 channel.They draw.
HOSTESS Throw me in the channel? I’ll throw thee in
50 the channel. Wilt thou, wilt thou, thou bastardly
 rogue?—Murder, murder!—Ah, thou honeysuckle
 villain, wilt thou kill God’s officers and the King’s?
 Ah, thou honeyseed rogue, thou art a honeyseed, a
 man-queller, and a woman-queller.
FALSTAFF 55Keep them off, Bardolph.

57
Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 2. SC. 1

OFFICERS A rescue, a rescue!
HOSTESS Good people, bring a rescue or two.—Thou
 wot, wot thou? Thou wot, wot ta? Do, do, thou
 rogue. Do, thou hempseed.
PAGE 60Away, you scullion, you rampallian, you fustilarian!
 I’ll tickle your catastrophe.

Enter Lord Chief Justice and his Men.

CHIEF JUSTICE 
 What is the matter? Keep the peace here, ho!
HOSTESS Good my lord, be good to me. I beseech you
 stand to me.
CHIEF JUSTICE 
65 How now, Sir John? What, are you brawling here?
 Doth this become your place, your time, and
 business?
 You should have been well on your way to York.—
 Stand from him, fellow. Wherefore hang’st thou
70 upon him?
HOSTESS O my most worshipful lord, an ’t please your
 Grace, I am a poor widow of Eastcheap, and he is
 arrested at my suit.
CHIEF JUSTICE For what sum?
HOSTESS 75It is more than for some, my lord; it is for all I
 have. He hath eaten me out of house and home. He
 hath put all my substance into that fat belly of his.
 To Falstaff. But I will have some of it out again, or I
 will ride thee o’ nights like the mare.
FALSTAFF 80I think I am as like to ride the mare if I have
 any vantage of ground to get up.
CHIEF JUSTICE How comes this, Sir John? Fie, what
 man of good temper would endure this tempest of
 exclamation? Are you not ashamed to enforce a
85 poor widow to so rough a course to come by her
 own?

59
Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 2. SC. 1

FALSTAFF What is the gross sum that I owe thee?
HOSTESS Marry, if thou wert an honest man, thyself
 and the money too. Thou didst swear to me upon a
90 parcel-gilt goblet, sitting in my Dolphin chamber at
 the round table by a sea-coal fire, upon Wednesday
 in Wheeson week, when the Prince broke thy head
 for liking his father to a singing-man of Windsor,
 thou didst swear to me then, as I was washing thy
95 wound, to marry me and make me my lady thy wife.
 Canst thou deny it? Did not Goodwife Keech, the
 butcher’s wife, come in then and call me Gossip
 Quickly, coming in to borrow a mess of vinegar,
 telling us she had a good dish of prawns, whereby
100 thou didst desire to eat some, whereby I told thee
 they were ill for a green wound? And didst thou not,
 when she was gone downstairs, desire me to be no
 more so familiarity with such poor people, saying
 that ere long they should call me madam? And didst
105 thou not kiss me and bid me fetch thee thirty
 shillings? I put thee now to thy book-oath. Deny it if
 thou canst.
FALSTAFF My lord, this is a poor mad soul, and she says
 up and down the town that her eldest son is like
110 you. She hath been in good case, and the truth is,
 poverty hath distracted her. But, for these foolish
 officers, I beseech you I may have redress against
 them.
CHIEF JUSTICE Sir John, Sir John, I am well acquainted
115 with your manner of wrenching the true cause the
 false way. It is not a confident brow, nor the throng
 of words that come with such more than impudent
 sauciness from you, can thrust me from a level
 consideration. You have, as it appears to me, practiced
120 upon the easy-yielding spirit of this woman,
 [and made her serve your uses both in purse and in
 person.]

61
Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 2. SC. 1

HOSTESS Yea, in truth, my lord.
CHIEF JUSTICE Pray thee, peace.—Pay her the debt you
125 owe her, and unpay the villainy you have done with
 her. The one you may do with sterling money, and
 the other with current repentance.
FALSTAFF My lord, I will not undergo this sneap without
 reply. You call honorable boldness “impudent
130 sauciness.” If a man will make curtsy and say
 nothing, he is virtuous. No, my lord, my humble
 duty remembered, I will not be your suitor. I say to
 you, I do desire deliverance from these officers,
 being upon hasty employment in the King’s affairs.
CHIEF JUSTICE 135You speak as having power to do wrong;
 but answer in th’ effect of your reputation, and
 satisfy the poor woman.
FALSTAFF Come hither, hostess.
He speaks aside to the Hostess.

Enter a Messenger, Master Gower.

CHIEF JUSTICE Now, Master Gower, what news?
GOWER 
140 The King, my lord, and Harry Prince of Wales
 Are near at hand. The rest the paper tells.
He gives the Chief Justice a paper to read.
FALSTAFF, to the Hostess As I am a gentleman!
HOSTESS Faith, you said so before.
FALSTAFF As I am a gentleman. Come. No more words
145 of it.
HOSTESS By this heavenly ground I tread on, I must be
 fain to pawn both my plate and the tapestry of my
 dining chambers.
FALSTAFF Glasses, glasses, is the only drinking. And for
150 thy walls, a pretty slight drollery, or the story of the
 Prodigal or the German hunting in waterwork is
 worth a thousand of these bed-hangers and these

63
Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 2. SC. 1

 fly-bitten tapestries. Let it be ten pound, if thou
 canst. Come, an ’twere not for thy humors, there’s
155 not a better wench in England. Go wash thy face,
 and draw the action. Come, thou must not be in this
 humor with me. Dost not know me? Come, come. I
 know thou wast set on to this.
HOSTESS Pray thee, Sir John, let it be but twenty
160 nobles. I’ faith, I am loath to pawn my plate, so God
 save me, la.
FALSTAFF Let it alone. I’ll make other shift. You’ll be a
 fool still.
HOSTESS Well, you shall have it, though I pawn my
165 gown. I hope you’ll come to supper. You’ll pay
 me all together?
FALSTAFF Will I live? Aside to Bardolph. Go with her,
 with her. Hook on, hook on.
HOSTESS Will you have Doll Tearsheet meet you at
170 supper?
FALSTAFF No more words. Let’s have her.
Hostess, Fang, Snare, Bardolph, Page,
and others exit.

CHIEF JUSTICE, to Gower I have heard better news.
FALSTAFF, to Chief Justice What’s the news, my good
 lord?
CHIEF JUSTICE, to Gower 175Where lay the King
 tonight?
GOWER At Basingstoke, my lord.
FALSTAFF, to Chief Justice I hope, my lord, all’s
 well. What is the news, my lord?
CHIEF JUSTICE, to Gower 180Come all his forces back?
GOWER 
 No. Fifteen hundred foot, five hundred horse
 Are marched up to my Lord of Lancaster
 Against Northumberland and the Archbishop.

65
Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 2. SC. 2

FALSTAFF, to Chief Justice 
 Comes the King back from Wales, my noble lord?
CHIEF JUSTICE, to Gower 
185 You shall have letters of me presently.
 Come. Go along with me, good Master Gower.
FALSTAFF My lord!
CHIEF JUSTICE What’s the matter?
FALSTAFF Master Gower, shall I entreat you with me to
190 dinner?
GOWER I must wait upon my good lord here. I thank
 you, good Sir John.
CHIEF JUSTICE Sir John, you loiter here too long, being
 you are to take soldiers up in counties as you go.
FALSTAFF 195Will you sup with me, Master Gower?
CHIEF JUSTICE What foolish master taught you these
 manners, Sir John?
FALSTAFF Master Gower, if they become me not, he was
 a fool that taught them me.—This is the right
200 fencing grace, my lord: tap for tap, and so part fair.
CHIEF JUSTICE Now the Lord lighten thee. Thou art a
 great fool.
They separate and exit.