List iconHenry IV, Part 2List icon

Henry IV, Part 2
Act 4, scene 2

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 2
Alarum. Excursions. Enter Falstaff and Colevile.

FALSTAFF What’s your name, sir? Of what condition are
 you, and of what place, I pray?
COLEVILE I am a knight, sir, and my name is Colevile of
 the Dale.
FALSTAFF 5Well then, Colevile is your name, a knight is
 your degree, and your place the Dale. Colevile shall
 be still your name, a traitor your degree, and the
 dungeon your place, a place deep enough so shall
 you be still Colevile of the Dale.
COLEVILE 10Are not you Sir John Falstaff?
FALSTAFF As good a man as he, sir, whoe’er I am. Do
 you yield, sir, or shall I sweat for you? If I do sweat,
 they are the drops of thy lovers and they weep for
 thy death. Therefore rouse up fear and trembling,
15 and do observance to my mercy.
COLEVILE I think you are Sir John Falstaff, and in that
 thought yield me.

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Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 4. SC. 2

FALSTAFF I have a whole school of tongues in this belly
 of mine, and not a tongue of them all speaks any
20 other word but my name. An I had but a belly of any
 indifferency, I were simply the most active fellow in
 Europe. My womb, my womb, my womb undoes
 me. Here comes our general.

Enter John, Westmoreland, and the rest.

JOHN OF LANCASTER 
 The heat is past. Follow no further now.
25 Call in the powers, good cousin Westmoreland.
Westmoreland exits. Retreat is sounded.
 Now, Falstaff, where have you been all this while?
 When everything is ended, then you come.
 These tardy tricks of yours will, on my life,
 One time or other break some gallows’ back.
FALSTAFF 30I would be sorry, my lord, but it should be
 thus. I never knew yet but rebuke and check was the
 reward of valor. Do you think me a swallow, an
 arrow, or a bullet? Have I in my poor and old
 motion the expedition of thought? I have speeded
35 hither with the very extremest inch of possibility. I
 have foundered ninescore and odd posts, and here,
 travel-tainted as I am, have in my pure and immaculate
 valor taken Sir John Colevile of the Dale, a most
 furious knight and valorous enemy. But what of
40 that? He saw me and yielded, that I may justly say,
 with the hook-nosed fellow of Rome, “There, cousin,
 I came, saw, and overcame.”
JOHN OF LANCASTER It was more of his courtesy than
 your deserving.
FALSTAFF 45I know not. Here he is, and here I yield him.
 And I beseech your Grace let it be booked with the
 rest of this day’s deeds, or, by the Lord, I will have it
 in a particular ballad else, with mine own picture
 on the top on ’t, Colevile kissing my foot; to the

171
Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 4. SC. 2

50 which course if I be enforced, if you do not all show
 like gilt twopences to me, and I in the clear sky of
 fame o’ershine you as much as the full moon doth
 the cinders of the element (which show like pins’
 heads to her), believe not the word of the noble.
55 Therefore let me have right, and let desert mount.
JOHN OF LANCASTER Thine’s too heavy to mount.
FALSTAFF Let it shine, then.
JOHN OF LANCASTER Thine’s too thick to shine.
FALSTAFF Let it do something, my good lord, that may
60 do me good, and call it what you will.
JOHN OF LANCASTER Is thy name Colevile?
COLEVILE It is, my lord.
JOHN OF LANCASTER A famous rebel art thou,
 Colevile.
FALSTAFF 65And a famous true subject took him.
COLEVILE 
 I am, my lord, but as my betters are
 That led me hither. Had they been ruled by me,
 You should have won them dearer than you have.
FALSTAFF I know not how they sold themselves, but
70 thou, like a kind fellow, gavest thyself away gratis,
 and I thank thee for thee.

Enter Westmoreland.

JOHN OF LANCASTER Now, have you left pursuit?
WESTMORELAND 
 Retreat is made and execution stayed.
JOHN OF LANCASTER 
 Send Colevile with his confederates
75 To York, to present execution.—
 Blunt, lead him hence, and see you guard him sure.
Blunt exits with Colevile.
 And now dispatch we toward the court, my lords.
 I hear the King my father is sore sick.

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Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 4. SC. 2

 Our news shall go before us to his Majesty,
80 To Westmoreland. Which, cousin, you shall bear
 to comfort him,
 And we with sober speed will follow you.
FALSTAFF My lord, I beseech you give me leave to go
 through Gloucestershire, and, when you come to
85 court, stand my good lord, pray, in your good
 report.
JOHN OF LANCASTER 
 Fare you well, Falstaff. I, in my condition,
 Shall better speak of you than you deserve.
All but Falstaff exit.
FALSTAFF I would you had but the wit; ’twere better
90 than your dukedom. Good faith, this same young
 sober-blooded boy doth not love me, nor a man
 cannot make him laugh. But that’s no marvel; he
 drinks no wine. There’s never none of these demure
 boys come to any proof, for thin drink doth so
95 overcool their blood, and making many fish meals,
 that they fall into a kind of male green-sickness, and
 then, when they marry, they get wenches. They are
 generally fools and cowards, which some of us
 should be too, but for inflammation. A good sherris
100 sack hath a two-fold operation in it. It ascends me
 into the brain, dries me there all the foolish and
 dull and crudy vapors which environ it, makes it
 apprehensive, quick, forgetive, full of nimble, fiery,
 and delectable shapes, which, delivered o’er to the
105 voice, the tongue, which is the birth, becomes
 excellent wit. The second property of your excellent
 sherris is the warming of the blood, which,
 before cold and settled, left the liver white and pale,
 which is the badge of pusillanimity and cowardice.
110 But the sherris warms it and makes it course from
 the inwards to the parts’ extremes. It illumineth the

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Henry IV, Part 2
ACT 4. SC. 2

 face, which as a beacon gives warning to all the rest
 of this little kingdom, man, to arm; and then the
 vital commoners and inland petty spirits muster me
115 all to their captain, the heart, who, great and puffed
 up with this retinue, doth any deed of courage, and
 this valor comes of sherris. So that skill in the
 weapon is nothing without sack, for that sets it
 a-work; and learning a mere hoard of gold kept
120 by a devil till sack commences it and sets it in
 act and use. Hereof comes it that Prince Harry is
 valiant, for the cold blood he did naturally inherit
 of his father he hath, like lean, sterile, and bare
 land, manured, husbanded, and tilled with excellent
125 endeavor of drinking good and good store
 of fertile sherris, that he is become very hot and valiant.
 If I had a thousand sons, the first human principle
 I would teach them should be to forswear
 thin potations and to addict themselves to sack.

Enter Bardolph.

130 How now, Bardolph?
BARDOLPH The army is discharged all and gone.
FALSTAFF Let them go. I’ll through Gloucestershire,
 and there will I visit Master Robert Shallow,
 Esquire. I have him already temp’ring between my
135 finger and my thumb, and shortly will I seal with
 him. Come away.
They exit.