Act 3 - Scene 2
London. The palace.
Enter KING HENRY IV, PRINCE HENRY, and others
KING HENRY IV
Lords, give us leave; the Prince of Wales and I
Must have some private conference; but be near at hand,
we shall presently have need of you.
I know not whether God will have it so,
For some displeasing service I have done,
That, in his secret
doom, out of my blood
He'll breed revengement and a scourge for me;
But thou dost in thy passages of
Make me believe that thou art only mark'd
For the hot vengeance and the rod of heaven
my mistreadings. Tell me else,
Could such inordinate and low desires,
Such poor, such bare, such lewd,
such mean attempts,
Such barren pleasures, rude society,
As thou art match'd withal and grafted to,
the greatness of thy blood
And hold their level with thy princely heart?
So please your majesty, I would I could
Quit all offences with as clear excuse
As well as I am doubtless
I can purge
Myself of many I am charged withal:
Yet such extenuation let me beg,
As, in reproof of many
which oft the ear of greatness needs must hear,
By smiling pick-thanks and base news-
I may, for some things true, wherein my youth
Hath faulty wander'd and irregular,
Find pardon on
my true submission.
KING HENRY IV
God pardon thee! yet let me wonder, Harry,
At thy affections, which do hold a wing
Quite from the flight
of all thy ancestors.
Thy place in council thou hast rudely lost.
Which by thy younger brother is supplied,
art almost an alien to the hearts
Of all the court and princes of my blood:
The hope and expectation of
Is ruin'd, and the soul of every man
Prophetically doth forethink thy fall.
Had I so lavish of my
So common-hackney'd in the eyes of men,
So stale and cheap to vulgar company,
that did help me to the crown,
Had still kept loyal to possession
And left me in reputeless banishment,
fellow of no mark nor likelihood.
By being seldom seen, I could not stir
But like a comet I was wonder'd
That men would tell their children 'This is he;'
Others would say 'Where, which is Bolingbroke?'
then I stole all courtesy from heaven,
And dress'd myself in such humility
That I did pluck allegiance from
Loud shouts and salutations from their mouths,
Even in the presence of the crowned king.
did I keep my person fresh and new;
My presence, like a robe pontifical,
Ne'er seen but wonder'd at: and
so my state,
Seldom but sumptuous, showed like a feast
And won by rareness such solemnity.
king, he ambled up and down
With shallow jesters and rash bavin wits,
Soon kindled and soon burnt; carded
Mingled his royalty with capering fools,
Had his great name profaned with their scorns
his countenance, against his name,
To laugh at gibing boys and stand the push
Of every beardless vain
Grew a companion to the common streets,
Enfeoff'd himself to popularity;
That, being daily
swallow'd by men's eyes,
They surfeited with honey and began
To loathe the taste of sweetness, whereof
More than a little is by much too much.
So when he had occasion to be seen,
He was but as the
cuckoo is in June,
Heard, not regarded; seen, but with such eyes
As, sick and blunted with community,
no extraordinary gaze,
Such as is bent on sun-like majesty
When it shines seldom in admiring eyes;
rather drowzed and hung their eyelids down,
Slept in his face and render'd such aspect
As cloudy men
use to their adversaries,
Being with his presence glutted, gorged and full.
And in that very line, Harry,
For thou has lost thy princely privilege
With vile participation: not an eye
But is a-weary of
thy common sight,
Save mine, which hath desired to see thee more;
Which now doth that I would not
have it do,
Make blind itself with foolish tenderness.