Henry IV Part 2


Act I
Act II
Act IV
Act V
Enter the Archbishop, Mowbray, and Hastings, with

their forces, within the Forest of Gaultree


What is this forest called?


'Tis Gaultree Forest, an't shall please your grace.


Here stand, my lords, and send discoverers forth
discoverer (n.) scout, spy, patrol

To know the numbers of our enemies.


We have sent forth already.


                         'Tis well done.

My friends and brethren in these great affairs,

I must acquaint you that I have received

New-dated letters from Northumberland,
new-dated (adj.) of recent date

Their cold intent, tenor, and substance, thus:

Here doth he wish his person, with such powers
power (n.) 1 armed force, troops, host, army See Topics: Frequency count

As might hold sortance with his quality,
quality (n.) 3 rank, standing, position
sortance (n.) agreement, correspondence, accord

The which he could not levy; whereupon

He is retired to ripe his growing fortunes
ripe (v.) ripen, mature

To Scotland, and concludes in hearty prayers

That your attempts may overlive the hazard
hazard (n.) 1 risk, peril, danger
overlive (v.) survive, outlive, outlast

And fearful meeting of their opposite.
opposite (n.) 1 opponent, adversary, anatagonist


Thus do the hopes we have in him touch ground
ground (n.) 8 bottom [as of the sea]

And dash themselves to pieces.

Enter a Messenger


                         Now, what news?


West of this forest, scarcely off a mile,

In goodly form comes on the enemy,
form (n.) 4 orderly manner, good arrangement
goodly (adj.) 2 good-looking, handsome, attractive, comely

And, by the ground they hide, I judge their number

Upon or near the rate of thirty thousand.
rate (n.) 1 quantity, amount, instance


The just proportion that we gave them out.
give out (v.) 3 estimate, predict of
just (adj.) 1 accurate, exact, precise
proportion (n.) 3 weighing up, appropriate measuring

Let us sway on and face them in the field.
field (n.) 1 field of battle, battleground, field of combat See Topics: Frequency count
sway on (v.) advance, move ahead

Enter Westmorland
front (v.) 1 confront, face, meet
well-appointed (adj.) well-equipped, properly fitted out


What well-appointed leader fronts us here?


I think it is my Lord of Westmorland.


Health and fair greeting from our general,

The Prince, Lord John and Duke of Lancaster.


Say on, my Lord of Westmorland, in peace,

What doth concern your coming.


                         Then, my lord,

Unto your grace do I in chief address
chief, in chiefly, principally

The substance of my speech. If that rebellion

Came like itself, in base and abject routs,
base (adj.) 1 dishonourable, low, unworthy See Topics: Frequency count
rout (n.) 3 brawl, disturbance, riot

Led on by bloody youth, guarded with rage,
bloody (adj.) 1 blood-thirsty, warlike, ferocious
guarded (adj.) ornamented, trimmed, tricked out

And countenanced by boys and beggary;
countenance (v.) 1 approve, support, encourage

I say, if damned commotion so appeared

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
base (adj.) 1 dishonourable, low, unworthy See Topics: Frequency count

With your fair honours. You, Lord Archbishop,

Whose see is by a civil peace maintained,
civil (adj.) 5 civic, public, city

Whose beard the silver hand of peace hath touched,

Whose learning and good letters peace hath tutored,
letter (n.) 3 (plural) sophisticated learning, great scholarship

Whose white investments figure innocence,
figure (v.) 1 symbolize, represent, portray
investments (n.) (plural) garments, clothes, clothing

The dove and very blessed spirit of peace,

Wherefore do you so ill translate yourself
ill (adv.) 1 badly, adversely, unfavourably See Topics: Frequency count
translate (v.) 1 transform, change, alter

Out of the speech of peace that bears such grace

Into the harsh and boisterous tongue of war,

Turning your books to graves, your ink to blood,
grave (n.) (plural) greave, leg-armour

Your pens to lances, and your tongue divine

To a trumpet and a point of war?
point (n.) 10 trumpet call used as a signal in a battle


Wherefore do I this? So the question stands.

Briefly, to this end: we are all diseased,

And with our surfeiting and wanton hours
surfeiting (n.) feeding to excess, overindulgence
wanton (adj.) 3 unrestrained, undisciplined, boisterous, uncontrolled

Have brought ourselves into a burning fever,

And we must bleed for it; of which disease
bleed (v.) lose blood, as a means of healing

Our late King Richard being infected died.

But, my most noble lord of Westmorland,

I take not on me here as a physician,
take on (v.) 2 assume a role, carry on

Nor do I as an enemy to peace

Troop in the throngs of military men,

But rather show awhile like fearful war
fearful (adj.) 2 causing fear, awe-inspiring, terrifying, alarming

To diet rank minds sick of happiness,
rank (adj.) 6 bloated, swollen, puffed-up

And purge th' obstructions which begin to stop
purge (v.) 2 expel, get rid of, flush out
stop (v.) 1 block, hinder, impede, obstruct

Our very veins of life. Hear me more plainly.

I have in equal balance justly weighed
equal (adj.) 2 precise, exact, just
justly (adv.) exactly, precisely, closely

What wrongs our arms may do, what wrongs we suffer,

And find our griefs heavier than our offences.
grief (n.) 1 grievance, complaint, hurt, injury

We see which way the stream of time doth run

And are enforced from our most quiet there
enforce (v.) 3 act upon by force
quiet (n.) calmness, peace of mind, serenity

By the rough torrent of occasion,
occasion (n.) 4 course of events, state of affairs

And have the summary of all our griefs,
article (n.) 1 clause, term, provision
grief (n.) 1 grievance, complaint, hurt, injury

When time shall serve, to show in articles,

Which long ere this we offered to the King,

And might by no suit gain our audience.
suit (n.) 1 formal request, entreaty, petition See Topics: Frequency count

When we are wronged, and would unfold our griefs,

We are denied access unto his person

Even by those men that most have done us wrong.

The dangers of the days but newly gone,

Whose memory is written on the earth

With yet-appearing blood, and the examples

Of every minute's instance, present now,
instance (n.) 5 presence, appearance; or: urgency

Hath put us in these ill-beseeming arms,
ill-beseeming (adj.) unseemly, inappropriate, unbecoming

Not to break peace, or any branch of it,

But to establish here a peace indeed,

Concurring both in name and quality.


Whenever yet was your appeal denied?

Wherein have you been galled by the King?
gall (v.) 3 injure, harm, wound

What peer hath been suborned to grate on you,
grate on / upon (v.) pester, harass, make heavy demands on
suborn (v.) bribe, corrupt, persuade [someone] to commit perjury

That you should seal this lawless bloody book

Of forged rebellion with a seal divine?


My brother general, the commonwealth,
commonweal, commonwealth (n.) state, nation, community, body politic

I make my quarrel in particular.
quarrel (n.) cause of complaint, reason for hostility, difference, claim


There is no need of any such redress,

Or if there were, it not belongs to you.


Why not to him in part, and to us all

That feel the bruises of the days before,

And suffer the condition of these times
condition (n.) 3 nature, state, circumstances

To lay a heavy and unequal hand
heavy (adj.) 10 brutal, oppressive, wicked
unequal (adj.) unjust, unfair, undeserved

Upon our honours?


                         O, my good Lord Mowbray,

Construe the times to their necessities,
construe (v.) 1 interpret, take, understand
necessity (n.) 1 inevitability, constrained outcome

And you shall say, indeed, it is the time,

And not the King, that doth you injuries.

Yet for your part, it not appears to me

Either from the King or in the present time

That you should have an inch of any ground

To build a grief on. Were you not restored
grief (n.) 1 grievance, complaint, hurt, injury

To all the Duke of Norfolk's signories,
signory (n.) 1 estate, domain, territory

Your noble and right well-remembered father's?


What thing, in honour, had my father lost

That need to be revived and breathed in me?

The King that loved him, as the state stood then,

Was force perforce compelled to banish him,
force perforce with violent compulsion

And then that Henry Bolingbroke and he,

Being mounted and both roused in their seats,
rouse (v.) 2 raise, lift up

Their neighing coursers daring of the spur,
courser (n.) swift horse, sprinter, charger

Their armed staves in charge, their beavers down,
armed (adj.) 1 armoured, mail-clad, furnished with defences
beaver (n.) visor of a helmet, face-guard See Topics: Body-armour
charge, in prepared for action, at the ready
staff (n.) 1 (plural ‘staves’) spear, lance

Their eyes of fire sparkling through sights of steel,
sight (n.) 4 visor

And the loud trumpet blowing them together,

Then, then, when there was nothing could have stayed
stay (v.) 10 dissuade, stop, prevent

My father from the breast of Bolingbroke,

O, when the King did throw his warder down,
warder (n.) 1 staff, truncheon, baton

His own life hung upon the staff he threw.

Then threw he down himself and all their lives

That by indictment and by dint of sword
indictment (n.) legal document containing a charge

Have since miscarried under Bolingbroke.
miscarry (v.) 1 come to harm, perish, meet death


You speak, Lord Mowbray, now you know not what.

The Earl of Hereford was reputed then

In England the most valiant gentleman.

Who knows on whom fortune would then have smiled?

But if your father had been victor there,

He ne'er had borne it out of Coventry;

For all the country, in a general voice,

Cried hate upon him, and all their prayers and love

Were set on Herford, whom they doted on,

And blessed, and graced, indeed more than the King.

But this is mere digression from my purpose.
mere (adj.) 1 complete, total, absolute, utter See Topics: Frequency count
purpose (n.) 2 point at issue, matter in hand

Here come I from our princely general

To know your griefs, to tell you from his grace
grief (n.) 1 grievance, complaint, hurt, injury

That he will give you audience; and wherein

It shall appear that your demands are just,

You shall enjoy them, everything set off
set off (v.) 2 take away, remove, set aside [from]

That might so much as think you enemies.


But he hath forced us to compel this offer,

And it proceeds from policy, not love.
policy (n.) 2 stratagem, cunning, intrigue, craft


Mowbray, you overween to take it so.
overween (v.) 1 presume too much, go too far

This offer comes from mercy, not from fear;

For lo, within a ken our army lies,
ken (n.) range of sight, view, visible distance

Upon mine honour, all too confident

To give admittance to a thought of fear.

Our battle is more full of names than yours,
battle (n.) 1 army, fighting force, battalion
name (n.) 3 famous name, luminary, celebrity

Our men more perfect in the use of arms,

Our armour all as strong, our cause the best;

Then reason will our hearts should be as good.
reason (n.) 1 power of reason, judgement, common-sense [often opposed to ‘passion’]

Say you not then our offer is compelled.


Well, by my will we shall admit no parley.
parle, parley (n.) 1 negotiation, meeting [between enemies under a truce, to discuss terms] See Topics: Frequency count


That argues but the shame of your offence;

A rotten case abides no handling.


Hath the Prince John a full commission,

In very ample virtue of his father,
ample (adj.) full, complete, absolute
virtue (n.) 7 authority, jurisdiction, power

To hear and absolutely to determine
determine (v.) 1 make a decision [about], reach a conclusion [about]

Of what conditions we shall stand upon?
stand upon (v.) 1 make an issue of, insist upon, bother about


That is intended in the general's name.
intend (v.) 3 mean, imply, suggest

I muse you make so slight a question.
muse (v.) 1 wonder, be surprised


Then take, my lord of Westmorland, this schedule,
schedule (n.) 1 inventory, list, itemization

For this contains our general grievances.
general (adj.) 3 joint, common, communal

Each several article herein redressed,
article (n.) 1 clause, term, provision
several (adj.) 2 various, sundry, respective, individual

All members of our cause, both here and hence,

That are ensinewed to this action
ensinewed, insinewed (adj.) joined together in strength

Acquitted by a true substantial form
substantial (adj.) 2 effective, thorough, forceful

And present execution of our wills –
execution (n.) 3 satisfaction, accomplishment
will (n.) 1 desire, wish, liking, inclination

To us and to our purposes confined
purpose (n.) 1 intention, aim, plan See Topics: Frequency count

We come within our awful banks again
awful (adj.) 1 awe-inspiring, worthy of respect

And knit our powers to the arm of peace.
power (n.) 1 armed force, troops, host, army See Topics: Frequency count


This will I show the general. Please you, lords,

In sight of both our battles we may meet,
battle (n.) 1 army, fighting force, battalion

At either end in peace – which God so frame! –
frame (v.) 3 arrange, organize, plan

Or to the place of difference call the swords
difference (n.) 1 quarrel, disagreement, dispute

Which must decide it.


                         My lord, we will do so.

Exit Westmorland


There is a thing within my bosom tells me

That no conditions of our peace can stand.
stand (v.) 12 accord, agree, hold good, be compatible


Fear you not that. If we can make our peace

Upon such large terms, and so absolute,
large (adj.) 1 generous, bountiful, liberal, lavish

As our conditions shall consist upon,
consist (v.) be disposed [for], be set, insist

Our peace shall stand as firm as rocky mountains.


Yea, but our valuation shall be such
valuation (n.) appreciation of merit, estimation of worth

That every slight and false-derived cause,

Yea, every idle, nice, and wanton reason,
idle (adj.) 5 trifling, unimportant, trivial
nice (adj.) 5 trivial, unimportant, slight
wanton (adj.) 2 casual, gentle

Shall to the King taste of this action;
action (n.) 1 campaign, military action, strategy
taste of (v.) partake of, savour of

That, were our royal faiths martyrs in love,
faith (n.) 2 constancy, fidelity, loyalty

We shall be winnowed with so rough a wind

That even our corn shall seem as light as chaff,

And good from bad find no partition.
partition (n.) 1 separation, distinction


No, no, my lord. Note this: the King is weary

Of dainty and such picking grievances,
dainty (adj.) 3 fastidious, scrupulous, refined, particular
grievance (n.) 2 cause of annoyance, painful constraint, source of sorrow
picking (adj.) fastidious, trifling, fussy

For he hath found to end one doubt by death
doubt (n.) 1 suspicion, apprehension

Revives two greater in the heirs of life;
heir (n.) offspring, progeny, fruit

And therefore will he wipe his tables clean,
table (n.) 1 writing tablet, memo pad, notebook

And keep no tell-tale to his memory

That may repeat and history his loss
history (v.) recount, narrate, relate

To new remembrance. For full well he knows
remembrance (n.) 3 notice, paying attention

He cannot so precisely weed this land

As his misdoubts present occasion.
misdoubt (n.) suspicion, mistrust, doubtfulness
occasion (n.) 2 ground, reason, cause, matter

His foes are so enrooted with his friends
enrooted (adj.) entangled by the roots

That, plucking to unfix an enemy,

He doth unfasten so and shake a friend.

So that this land, like an offensive wife

That hath enraged him on to offer strokes,

As he is striking, holds his infant up,

And hangs resolved correction in the arm
hang (v.) suspend, hold off, put off
resolved (adj.) 1 determined, settled, decided

That was upreared to execution.
execution (n.) 2 exercising, putting into operation
uprear (v.) upraise, lift up


Besides, the King hath wasted all his rods
waste (v.) 2 consume, use up

On late offenders, that he now doth lack
late (adj.) 1 recent, not long past

The very instruments of chastisement,

So that his power, like to a fangless lion,
like to / unto (conj./prep.) similar to, comparable with

May offer, but not hold.
hold (v.) 3 stand firm, continue, carry on
offer (v.) 2 dare, presume, venture


                         'Tis very true;

And therefore be assured, my good Lord Marshal,

If we do now make our atonement well,
atonement (n.) reconciliation, appeasement, harmony

Our peace will, like a broken limb united,

Grow stronger for the breaking.


                         Be it so.

Here is returned my Lord of Westmorland.

Enter Westmorland


The Prince is here at hand. Pleaseth your lordship

To meet his grace just distance 'tween our armies?
just (adj.) 4 equal, even


Your grace of York, in God's name then, set forward.


Before, and greet his grace! My lord, we come.

They go forward

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