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Henry V: Act III, Scene 3

Henry V
Act III, Scene 3

France. Before the Harfleur Gates.

  1. Enter some Citizens on the walls. Enter the King and all his
  2. Train before the gates.

King Henry the Fifth

1 - 43
  1. How yet resolves the governor of the town?
  2. This is the latest parle we will admit;
  3. Therefore to our best mercy give yourselves,
  4. Or like to men proud of destruction,
  5. Defy us to our worst; for as I am a soldier,
  6. A name that in my thoughts becomes me best,
  7. If I begin the batt’ry once again,
  8. I will not leave the half-achieved Harfleur
  9. Till in her ashes she lies buried.
  10. The gates of mercy shall be all shut up,
  11. And the flesh’d soldier, rough and hard of heart,
  12. In liberty of bloody hand, shall range,
  13. With conscience wide as hell, mowing like grass
  14. Your fresh fair virgins and your flow’ring infants.
  15. What is it then to me, if impious War,
  16. Arrayed in flames like to the prince of fiends,
  17. Do with his smirch’d complexion all fell feats
  18. Enlink’d to waste and desolation?
  19. What is’t to me, when you yourselves are cause,
  20. If your pure maidens fall into the hand
  21. Of hot and forcing violation?
  22. What rein can hold licentious wickedness
  23. When down the hill he holds his fierce career?
  24. We may as bootless spend our vain command
  25. Upon th’ enraged soldiers in their spoil,
  26. As send precepts to the leviathan
  27. To come ashore. Therefore, you men of Harfleur,
  28. Take pity of your town and of your people,
  29. Whiles yet my soldiers are in my command,
  30. Whiles yet the cool and temperate wind of grace
  31. O’erblows the filthy and contagious clouds
  32. Of headly murder, spoil, and villainy.
  33. If notwhy, in a moment look to see
  34. The blind and bloody soldier with foul hand
  35. Defile the locks of your shrill-shrieking daughters;
  36. Your fathers taken by the silver beards,
  37. And their most reverend heads dash’d to the walls;
  38. Your naked infants spitted upon pikes,
  39. Whiles the mad mothers with their howls confus’d
  40. Do break the clouds, as did the wives of Jewry
  41. At Herod’s bloody-hunting slaughter-men.
  42. What say you? Will you yield, and this avoid?
  43. Or guilty in defense, be thus destroy’d?
  1. Enter Governor to the Citizens.

Governor of Harfleur

44 - 50
  1. Our expectation hath this day an end.
  2. The Dauphin, whom of succors we entreated,
  3. Returns us that his powers are yet not ready
  4. To raise so great a siege. Therefore, great King,
  5. We yield our town and lives to thy soft mercy.
  6. Enter our gates, dispose of us and ours,
  7. For we no longer are defensible.

King Henry the Fifth

51 - 58
  1. Open your gates. Come, uncle Exeter,
  2. Go you and enter Harfleur; there remain,
  3. And fortify it strongly ’gainst the French.
  4. Use mercy to them all for us, dear uncle.
  5. The winter coming on, and sickness growing
  6. Upon our soldiers, we will retire to Callice.
  7. Tonight in Harfleur will we be your guest;
  8. Tomorrow for the march are we address’d.
  1. Flourish, and enter the town.
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