The Ultimate Free Shakespeare Resource The Ultimate Free Shakespeare Resource The Ultimate Free Shakespeare Resource The Ultimate Free Shakespeare Resource

Henry IV, Part 1 Scenes

Scene 4

Another part of the field.

(King Henry IV; Prince Henry; Prince John of Lancaster; Earl of Westmorland; Douglas; Prince of Wales; Hotspur; Falstaff)

The wounded prince refuses to retire to his tent. Both Hal and the King are impressed by John of Lancaster’s valor. The Prince saves his father from an attack by Douglas. Hotspur comes upon the Prince, and they fight, Hal finally overcoming the rebel and killing him. During this time, Douglas attacks Falstaff, who falls down and plays dead. Getting up as soon as the Prince is gone, he decides to claim Hotspur as his own kill. When challenged by Hal on this, he swears that Hotspur got up again just after he did himself. The royalists realize that they have won. (135 lines)

Alarm. Excursions. Enter the King, the Prince wounded, Lord John of Lancaster, Earl of Westmorland.


I prithee,

Harry, withdraw thyself, thou bleedest too much.

Lord John of Lancaster, go you with him.


Not I, my lord, unless I did bleed too.


I beseech your Majesty make up,

Lest your retirement do amaze your friends.


I will do so.

My Lord of Westmorland, lead him to his tent.


Come, my lord, I’ll lead you to your tent.


Lead me, my lord? I do not need your help,

And God forbid a shallow scratch should drive

The Prince of Wales from such a field as this,

Where stain’d nobility lies trodden on,

And rebels’ arms triumph in massacres!


We breathe too long. Come, cousin Westmorland,

Our duty this way lies; for God’s sake come.

Exeunt Prince John and Westmorland.


By God, thou hast deceiv’d me, Lancaster,

I did not think thee lord of such a spirit.

Before, I lov’d thee as a brother, John,

But now I do respect thee as my soul.


I saw him hold Lord Percy at the point,

With lustier maintenance than I did look for

Of such an ungrown warrior.


O, this boy

Lends mettle to us all!


Enter Douglas.


Another king? They grow like Hydra’s heads.

I am the Douglas, fatal to all those

That wear those colors on them. What art thou

That counterfeit’st the person of a king?


The King himself, who, Douglas, grieves at heart

So many of his shadows thou hast met

And not the very King. I have two boys

Seek Percy and thyself about the field,

But seeing thou fall’st on me so luckily,

I will assay thee, and defend thyself.


I fear thou art another counterfeit,

And yet in faith thou bearest thee like a king.

But mine I am sure thou art, whoe’er thou be,

And thus I win thee.

They fight; the King being in danger.

Enter Prince of Wales.


Hold up thy head, vile Scot, or thou art like

Never to hold it up again! The spirits

Of valiant Shirley, Stafford, Blunt are in my arms.

It is the Prince of Wales that threatens thee,

Who never promiseth but he means to pay.

They fight.

Douglas flieth.

Cheerly, my lord, how fares your Grace?

Sir Nicholas Gawsey hath for succor sent,

And so hath Clifton. I’ll to Clifton straight.


Stay and breathe a while.

Thou hast redeem’d thy lost opinion,

And show’d thou mak’st some tender of my life

In this fair rescue thou hast brought to me.


O God, they did me too much injury

That ever said I heark’ned for your death.

If it were so, I might have let alone

The insulting hand of Douglas over you,

Which would have been as speedy in your end

As all the poisonous potions in the world,

And sav’d the treacherous labor of your son.


Make up to Clifton, I’ll to Sir Nicholas Gawsey.

Exit King.

Enter Hotspur.


If I mistake not, thou art Harry Monmouth.


Thou speak’st as if I would deny my name.


My name is Harry Percy.


Why then I see

A very valiant rebel of the name.

I am the Prince of Wales, and think not, Percy,

To share with me in glory any more.

Two stars keep not their motion in one sphere,

Nor can one England brook a double reign

Of Harry Percy and the Prince of Wales.


Nor shall it, Harry, for the hour is come

To end the one of us, and would to God

Thy name in arms were now as great as mine!


I’ll make it greater ere I part from thee,

And all the budding honors on thy crest

I’ll crop to make a garland for my head.


I can no longer brook thy vanities.

They fight.

Enter Falstaff.


Well said, Hal! To it, Hal! Nay, you shall find no boy’s play here, I can tell you.

Enter Douglas.

He fighteth with Falstaff. Falstaff falls down as if he were dead.

Exit Douglas.

The Prince killeth Percy.


O Harry, thou hast robb’d me of my youth!

I better brook the loss of brittle life

Than those proud titles thou hast won of me.

They wound my thoughts worse than thy sword my flesh.

But thoughts, the slaves of life, and life, time’s fool,

And time, that takes survey of all the world,

Must have a stop. O, I could prophesy,

But that the earthy and cold hand of death

Lies on my tongue. No, Percy, thou art dust,

And food for—



For worms, brave Percy. Fare thee well, great heart!

Ill-weav’d ambition, how much art thou shrunk!

When that this body did contain a spirit,

A kingdom for it was too small a bound,

But now two paces of the vilest earth

Is room enough. This earth that bears thee dead

Bears not alive so stout a gentleman.

If thou were sensible of courtesy,

I should not make so dear a show of zeal;

But let my favors hide thy mangled face,

And even in thy behalf I’ll thank myself

For doing these fair rites of tenderness.

Adieu, and take thy praise with thee to heaven!

Thy ignominy sleep with thee in the grave,

But not rememb’red in thy epitaph!

He spieth Falstaff on the ground.

What, old acquaintance! Could not all this flesh

Keep in a little life? Poor Jack, farewell!

I could have better spar’d a better man.

O, I should have a heavy miss of thee

If I were much in love with vanity!

Death hath not struck so fat a deer today,

Though many dearer, in this bloody fray.

Embowell’d will I see thee by and by,

Till then in blood by noble Percy lie.


Falstaff riseth up.


Embowell’d! If thou embowel me today, I’ll give you leave to powder me and eat me too tomorrow. ’Sblood, ’twas time to counterfeit, or that hot termagant Scot had paid me scot and lot too. Counterfeit? I lie, I am no counterfeit. To die is to be a counterfeit, for he is but the counterfeit of a man who hath not the life of a man; but to counterfeit dying, when a man thereby liveth, is to be no counterfeit, but the true and perfect image of life indeed. The better part of valor is discretion, in the which better part I have sav’d my life. ’Zounds, I am afraid of this gunpowder Percy though he be dead. How if he should counterfeit too and rise? By my faith, I am afraid he would prove the better counterfeit. Therefore I’ll make him sure, yea, and I’ll swear I kill’d him. Why may not he rise as well as I? Nothing confutes me but eyes, and nobody sees me. Therefore, sirrah,

Stabbing him

with a new wound in your thigh, come you along with me.

He takes up Hotspur on his back.

Enter Prince and John of Lancaster.


Come, brother John, full bravely hast thou flesh’d

Thy maiden sword.


But soft, whom have we here?

Did you not tell me this fat man was dead?


I did, I saw him dead,

Breathless and bleeding on the ground. Art thou alive?

Or is it fantasy that plays upon our eyesight?

I prithee speak, we will not trust our eyes

Without our ears: thou art not what thou seem’st.


No, that’s certain, I am not a double man; but if I be not Jack Falstaff, then am I a Jack. There is Percy.

Throwing the body down.

If your father will do me any honor, so; if not, let him kill the next Percy himself. I look to be either earl or duke, I can assure you.


Why, Percy I kill’d myself, and saw thee dead.


Didst thou? Lord, Lord, how this world is given to lying! I grant you I was down and out of breath, and so was he, but we rose both at an instant and fought a long hour by Shrewsbury clock. If I may be believ’d, so; if not, let them that should reward valor bear the sin upon their own heads. I’ll take it upon my death, I gave him this wound in the thigh. If the man were alive and would deny it, ’zounds, I would make him eat a piece of my sword.


His is the strangest tale that ever I heard.


This is the strangest fellow, brother John.

Come bring your luggage nobly on your back.

For my part, if a lie may do thee grace,

I’ll gild it with the happiest terms I have.

A retreat is sounded.

The trumpet sounds retreat, the day is our.

Come, brother, let us to the highest of the field,

To see what friends are living, who are dead.

Exeunt Prince and Lancaster.


I’ll follow, as they say, for reward. He that rewards me, God reward him! If I do grow great, I’ll grow less, for I’ll purge and leave sack, and live cleanly as a nobleman should do.



Use Power Search to search the works

Please consider making a small donation to help keep this site free.


Log in or Register

Forgot username  Forgot password
Get the Shakespeare Pro app