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Henry IV, Pt. 2: Act III, Scene 1

Henry IV, Pt. 2
Act III, Scene 1

Scene 1

Westminster . A palace room .

  1. Enter the King in his night - gown , alone , followed by a Page .

King Henry the Fourth

1 - 31
  1. Go call the Earls of Surrey and of Warwick ;
  2. But , ere they come , bid them o’er - read these letters
  3. And well consider of them . Make good speed .
  4. Exit Page .
  5. How many thousand of my poorest subjects
  6. Are at this hour asleep ! O sleep ! O gentle sleep !
  7. Nature’s soft nurse , how have I frighted thee ,
  8. That thou no more wilt weigh my eyelids down ,
  9. And steep my senses in forgetfulness ?
  10. Why rather , sleep , liest thou in smoky cribs ,
  11. Upon uneasy pallets stretching thee ,
  12. And hush’d with buzzing night - flies to thy slumber ,
  13. Than in the perfum’d chambers of the great ,
  14. Under the canopies of costly state ,
  15. And lull’d with sound of sweetest melody ?
  16. O thou dull god , why li’st thou with the vile
  17. In loathsome beds , and leavest the kingly couch
  18. A watch - case or a common ’larum - bell ?
  19. Wilt thou upon the high and giddy mast
  20. Seal up the ship - boy’s eyes , and rock his brains
  21. In cradle of the rude imperious surge ,
  22. And in the visitation of the winds ,
  23. Who take the ruffian billows by the top ,
  24. Curling their monstrous heads and hanging them
  25. With deafing clamor in the slippery clouds ,
  26. That with the hurly death itself awakes ?
  27. Canst thou , O partial sleep , give then repose
  28. To the wet sea - boy in an hour so rude ,
  29. And in the calmest and most stillest night ,
  30. With all appliances and means to boot ,
  31. Deny it to a king ? Then ( happy ) low , lie down !
  32. Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown .
  1. Enter Warwick , Surrey , and Sir John Blunt .

Earl of Warwick

32
  1. Many good morrows to your Majesty !

King Henry the Fourth

33
  1. Is it good morrow , lords ?

Earl of Warwick

34
  1. ’Tis one a’ clock , and past .

King Henry the Fourth

35 - 36
  1. Why then good morrow to you all , my lords .
  2. Have you read o’er the letters that I sent you ?

Earl of Warwick

37
  1. We have , my liege .

King Henry the Fourth

38 - 40
  1. Then you perceive the body of our kingdom
  2. How foul it is , what rank diseases grow ,
  3. And with what danger , near the heart of it .

Earl of Warwick

41 - 44
  1. It is but as a body yet distempered ,
  2. Which to his former strength may be restored
  3. With good advice and little medicine .
  4. My Lord Northumberland will soon be cool’d .

King Henry the Fourth

45 - 79
  1. O God , that one might read the book of fate ,
  2. And see the revolution of the times
  3. Make mountains level , and the continent ,
  4. Weary of solid firmness , melt itself
  5. Into the sea , and other times to see
  6. The beachy girdle of the ocean
  7. Too wide for Neptune’s hips ; how chance’s mocks
  8. And changes fill the cup of alteration
  9. With divers liquors ! O , if this were seen ,
  10. The happiest youth , viewing his progress through ,
  11. What perils past , what crosses to ensue ,
  12. Would shut the book , and sit him down and die .
  13. ’Tis not ten years gone
  14. Since Richard and Northumberland , great friends ,
  15. Did feast together , and in two year after
  16. Were they at wars . It is but eight years since
  17. This Percy was the man nearest my soul ,
  18. Who like a brother toil’d in my affairs ,
  19. And laid his love and life under my foot ,
  20. Yea , for my sake , even to the eyes of Richard
  21. Gave him defiance . But which of you was by
  22. To Warwick .
  23. You , cousin Nevil , as I may remember
  24. When Richard , with his eye brimful of tears ,
  25. Then check’d and rated by Northumberland ,
  26. Did speak these words , now prov’d a prophecy ?
  27. Northumberland , thou ladder by the which
  28. My cousin Bullingbrook ascends my throne
  29. ( Though then , God knows , I had no such intent ,
  30. But that necessity so bow’d the state
  31. That I and greatness were compell’d to kiss ),
  32. The time shall come ,” thus did he follow it ,
  33. The time will come , that foul sin , gathering head ,
  34. Shall break into corruption ”: so went on ,
  35. Foretelling this same time’s condition
  36. And the division of our amity .

Earl of Warwick

80 - 92
  1. There is a history in all men’s lives ,
  2. Figuring the natures of the times deceas’d ,
  3. The which observ’d , a man may prophesy ,
  4. With a near aim , of the main chance of things
  5. As yet not come to life , who in their seeds
  6. And weak beginning lie intreasured .
  7. Such things become the hatch and brood of time ,
  8. And by the necessary form of this
  9. King Richard might create a perfect guess
  10. That great Northumberland , then false to him ,
  11. Would of that seed grow to a greater falseness ,
  12. Which should not find a ground to root upon
  13. Unless on you .

King Henry the Fourth

93 - 97
  1.                Are these things then necessities ?
  2. Then let us meet them like necessities ;
  3. And that same word even now cries out on us .
  4. They say the Bishop and Northumberland
  5. Are fifty thousand strong .

Earl of Warwick

98 - 108
  1.                            It cannot be , my lord .
  2. Rumor doth double , like the voice and echo ,
  3. The numbers of the feared . Please it your Grace
  4. To go to bed . Upon my soul , my lord ,
  5. The powers that you already have sent forth
  6. Shall bring this prize in very easily .
  7. To comfort you the more , I have received
  8. A certain instance that Glendower is dead .
  9. Your Majesty hath been this fortnight ill ,
  10. And these unseasoned hours perforce must add
  11. Unto your sickness .

King Henry the Fourth

109 - 111
  1.                     I will take your counsel ,
  2. And were these inward wars once out of hand ,
  3. We would , dear lords , unto the Holy Land .
  1. Exeunt .
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