A scene for 2 characters from the play "Henry IV Part 1" by William Shakespeare
About this Monologue
- Characters: Prince Henry?Falstaff???
- Scene type / Who are: Friends
- Type: Comic
- Genre: Historical, Drama, Comedy
- Description: Prince Henry mocks his friend Falstaff
- Location: ACT I, Scene 2
This scene is the beginning of the second scene of the play. Prince Henry is at a tavern with his good friend Falstaff, an old and overweight criminal who drinks every night and sleeps all day. They are having a good time as Prince Henry mocks his friend ...
Written by Administrator
[London. An apartment of the Prince's.]
[Enter the PRINCE OF WALES and FALSTAFF]
Now, Hal, what time of day is it, lad?
Thou art so fat-witted, with drinking of old sack
and unbuttoning thee after supper and sleeping upon
benches after noon, that thou hast forgotten to
demand that truly which thou wouldst truly know.
What a devil hast thou to do with the time of the
day? Unless hours were cups of sack and minutes
capons and clocks the tongues of bawds and dials the
signs of leaping-houses and the blessed sun himself
a fair hot wench in flame-coloured taffeta, I see no
reason why thou shouldst be so superfluous to demand
the time of the day.
Indeed, you come near me now, Hal; for we that take
purses go by the moon and the seven stars, and not
by Phoebus, he,'that wandering knight so fair.' And,
I prithee, sweet wag, when thou art king, as, God
save thy grace,--majesty I should say, for grace
thou wilt have none,--
No, by my troth, not so much as will serve to
prologue to an egg and butter.
Well, how then? come, roundly, roundly.
Marry, then, sweet wag, when thou art king, let not
us that are squires of the night's body be called
thieves of the day's beauty: let us be Diana's
foresters, gentlemen of the shade, minions of the
moon; and let men say we be men of good government,
being governed, as the sea is, by our noble and
chaste mistress the moon, under whose countenance we steal.
Thou sayest well, and it holds well too; for the
fortune of us that are the moon's men doth ebb and
flow like the sea, being governed, as the sea is,
by the moon. As, for proof, now: a purse of gold
most resolutely snatched on Monday night and most
dissolutely spent on Tuesday morning; got with
swearing 'Lay by' and spent with crying 'Bring in;'
now in as low an ebb as the foot of the ladder
and by and by in as high a flow as the ridge of the gallows.
By the Lord, thou sayest true, lad. And is not my
hostess of the tavern a most sweet wench?
As the honey of Hybla, my old lad of the castle. And
is not a buff jerkin a most sweet robe of durance?
How now, how now, mad wag! what, in thy quips and
thy quiddities? what a plague have I to do with a
Why, what a pox have I to do with my hostess of the tavern?
Well, thou hast called her to a reckoning many a
time and oft.
Did I ever call for thee to pay thy part?
No; I'll give thee thy due, thou hast paid all there.
Yea, and elsewhere, so far as my coin would stretch;
and where it would not, I have used my credit.
Yea, and so used it that were it not here apparent
that thou art heir apparent--But, I prithee, sweet
wag, shall there be gallows standing in England when
thou art king? and resolution thus fobbed as it is
with the rusty curb of old father antic the law? Do
not thou, when thou art king, hang a thief.
No; thou shalt.
Shall I? O rare! By the Lord, I'll be a brave judge.
Thou judgest false already: I mean, thou shalt have
the hanging of the thieves and so become a rare hangman.
Well, Hal, well; and in some sort it jumps with my
humour as well as waiting in the court, I can tell
For obtaining of suits?
Yea, for obtaining of suits, whereof the hangman
hath no lean wardrobe. 'Sblood, I am as melancholy
as a gib cat or a lugged bear.
Or an old lion, or a lover's lute.
Yea, or the drone of a Lincolnshire bagpipe.
What sayest thou to a hare, or the melancholy of
Thou hast the most unsavoury similes and art indeed
the most comparative, rascalliest, sweet young
prince. But, Hal, I prithee, trouble me no more
with vanity. I would to God thou and I knew where a
commodity of good names were to be bought. An old
lord of the council rated me the other day in the
street about you, sir, but I marked him not; and yet
he talked very wisely, but I regarded him not; and
yet he talked wisely, and in the street too.
Thou didst well; for wisdom cries out in the
streets, and no man regards it.
O, thou hast damnable iteration and art indeed able
to corrupt a saint. Thou hast done much harm upon
me, Hal; God forgive thee for it! Before I knew
thee, Hal, I knew nothing; and now am I, if a man
should speak truly, little better than one of the
wicked. I must give over this life, and I will give
it over: by the Lord, and I do not, I am a villain:
I'll be damned for never a king's son in
Where shall we take a purse tomorrow, Jack?
'Zounds, where thou wilt, lad; I'll make one; an I
do not, call me villain and baffle me.
I see a good amendment of life in thee; from praying
Why, Hal, 'tis my vocation, Hal; 'tis no sin for a
man to labour in his vocation.
[Poins! Now shall we know if Gadshill have set a
match. O, if men were to be saved by merit, what
hole in hell were hot enough for him? This is the
most omnipotent villain that ever cried 'Stand' to
a true man.]