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LADY PERCY'S PATHETIC SPEECH TO HER
FROM THE FIRST PART OF KING HENRY THE FOURTH.'
O my good lord, why are you thus alone ?
For what offence have I, this fortnight, been
A banish'd woman from my Harry's bed ?
Tell me, sweet lord, what is't that takes from thee
Thy stomach, pleasure, and thy golden sleep?
Why dost thou bend thine eyes upon the earth,
And start so often when thou sitt'st alone?
Why hast thou lost the fresh blood in thy cheeks,
And given my treasures, and my rights of thee,
To thick-eyed musing, and cursed melancholy ?
In thy faint slumbers I by thee have watched,
And heard thee murmur tales of iron wars;
Speak terms of manage to thy bounding steed;
Cry, Courage! to the field ! and thou hast talk'd
Of sallies and retires; of trenches, tents,
Of palisadoes, frontiers, parapets,
Of basilisks, of cannon, culverin,
Of prisoners' ransom, and of soldiers slain,
And all the currents of a heady fight.
Thy spirit within thee hath been so at war,
And thus hath so bestirr'd thee in thy sleep,
That beads of sweat have stood upon thy brow,
Like bubbles in a late disturbed stream;
And in thy face strange motions have appear'd
Such as we see when men restrain their breath
On some great sudden haste. O what portents are
Some heavy business hath my lord in hand,
And I must know it, else he loves me not.
WARLIKE BISHOPS CENSURED, IN A SPEECH UTTERED BY THE EARL OF WESTMORELAND.
FROM THE SECOND PART OR THE PLAY OF
HENRY THE FOURTH.'
If that rebellion Came like itself in base and abject routs, Led on by bloody youth, guarded with rags, And countenanced by boys and beggary; I say, if damn'd commotion so appear'd, In his true, native, and most proper shape, You, reverend father, and these noble lords, Had not been here, to dress the ugly form Of base and bloody insurrection With your fair honours. You, lord archbishop, Whose see is by a civil peace maintain'd; Whose beard the silver hand of peace hath touch'd; Whose learning and good letters peace hath tutord; Whose white investments figure innocence, The dove and very blessed spirit of peace; Wherefore do you so ill translate yourself Out of the speech of peace that bears such grace, ; Into the harsh and bois'trous tongue of war; Turning your books to greaves, your ink to blood,
Your pens to lances, and your tongue divine
To a loud trumpet, and a point of war?
In the above speech, Shakspere's conceptions of the holy and peaceful character of the clerical office are finely set forth. It is probable the poet was one of the first to censure military bishops, and how nobly he accomplishes his purpose may be seen in the above elegant denunciation.
HENRY THE FOURTH'S SOLILOQUY ON
FROM THE SECOND PART OF 'KING HENRY THE FOURTII.'
How many thousand of my poorest subjects
Are at this hour asleep! O sleep! O gentle sleep,
Nature's soft nurse, how have I frighted thee,
That thou no more wilt weigh my eyelids down,
And steep my senses in forgetfulness !
Why rather, sleep, liest thou in smoky cribs,
Upon uneasy pallets stretching thee,
And hushed with buzzing night-flies to thy slumber,
Than in the perfumed chambers of the great,
Under the canopies of costly state,
And lulled with sounds of sweetest melody?
O thou dull god, why liest thou with the vile
In loathsome beds, and leav'st the kingly couch
A watch-case, or a common larum bell ?
Wilt thou upon the high and giddy mast
Seal up the ship-boy's eyes, and rock his brains
In cradle of the rude imperious surge;
And in the visitation of the winds,
Who take the ruffian billows by the top,
Curling their monstrous heads, and hanging them
With deafening clamour in the slipp'ry clouds
That with the hurly, death itself awakes
Canst thou, O partial sleep, give thy repose
To the wet sea-boy in an hour so rude,
And in the calmest and the stillest night,
With all appliances and means to boot,
Deny it to a king? Then, happy low, lie down!
Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown,
PERFECTIONS OF KING HENRY THE FIFTH.
Hear him but reason in divinity,
And, all-admiring, with an inward wish
You would desire the King were made a prelate.
Hear him debate of commonwealth affairs,
You would say,—it hath been all-in-all his study.
List his discourse of war, and you shall hear
A fearful battle rendered you in music:
Turn him to any cause of policy,
The Gordian knot of it he will unloose
Familiar as his garter; that, when he speaks,
The air, a chartered libertine, is still,
And the mute wonder lurketh in men's ears,
To steal his sweet and honeyed sentences. .
King Henry the Fifth may be considered the fa. vourite monarch of our poet. Shakspere in this Play invocates the Muse in the beautiful and spirited manner which follows:
O for a muse of fire, that would ascend
The brightest heaven of invention !
A kingdom for a stage, princes to act,
And monarchs to behold the swelling scene!
Then should the warlike Harry, like himself, .
Assume the part of Mars; and, at his heels,
Leash'd in, like hounds, should famine, sword and fire,
Crouch for employment.
In Act the Fourth of the Second Part of King Henry 2m2?Â2Ò2Â§âmēģēmē❤/22/2/2/2/2/§ÂÂÂÂ§Â2Òâmūtiņtiò►ņēģ22 ??
THE CHARACTER OF KING HENRY THE
FIFTH BY HIS FATHER.
He is gracious, if he be observed :
He hath a tear for pity, and a hand
Open as day for melting charity;
Yet notwithstanding, being incens'd, he's flint;
As humorous as winter, and as sudden
As flaws congealed in the spring of day.
His temper, therefore, must be well observed ;
Chide him for faults, and do it reverently,
When you perceive his blood inclined to mirth;
But being moody, give him line and scope,