King Henry IV, Part 1 By William Shakespeare Act II: Scene 4

What, stand'st thou still, and hear'st such a calling? Look
to the guests within. [Exit Francis.] — My lord, old Sir John,
with half-a-dozen more, are at the door: shall I let them in?

Let them alone awhile, and then open the door.

[Exit Vintner.]


[Re-enter Pointz.]

Anon, anon, sir.

Sirrah, Falstaff and the rest of the thieves are at the
door: shall we be merry?

As merry as crickets, my lad. But hark ye; what cunning
match have you made with this jest of the drawer? Come,
what's the issue?

I am now of all humours that have showed themselves humours
since the old days of goodman Adam to the pupil age of this
present twelve o'clock at midnight. — What's o'clock, Francis?

[Within.] Anon, anon, sir.

That ever this fellow should have fewer words than a parrot, and
yet the son of a woman! His industry is up-stairs and down-stairs;
his eloquence the parcel of a reckoning. I am not yet of Percy's
mind, the Hotspur of the North; he that kills me some six or seven
dozen of Scots at a breakfast, washes his hands, and says to his wife,
Fie upon this quiet life! I want work. O my sweet Harry, says she,
how many hast thou kill'd to-day? Give my roan horse a drench,
says he; and answers, Some fourteen, an hour after, — a trifle, a
I pr'ythee, call in Falstaff: I'll play Percy, and that damn'd
brawn shall play Dame Mortimer his wife. Rivo! says the drunkard.
Call in ribs, call in tallow.

[Enter Falstaff, Gadshill, Bardolph, and Peto; followed by
Francis with wine.]

Welcome, Jack: where hast thou been?

A plague of all cowards, I say, and a vengeance too! marry, and
amen! —
Give me a cup of sack, boy. — Ere I lead this life long, I'll sew
nether-stocks, and mend them and foot them too. A plague of all
cowards! —
Give me a cup of sack, rogue. — Is there no virtue extant?


Didst thou never see Titan kiss a dish of butter? pitiful-hearted
butter, that melted at the sweet tale of the Sun! if thou didst,
then behold that compound.

You rogue, here's lime in this sack too: there is nothing but roguery
to be found in villainous man: yet a coward is worse than a cup of
sack with lime in it, a villanous coward. — Go thy ways, old Jack: die
when thou wilt, if manhood, good manhood, be not forgot upon the face
of the Earth, then am I a shotten herring. There live not three good
men unhang'd in England; and one of them is fat, and grows old: God
help the while! a bad world, I say.
I would I were a weaver; I could sing psalms or any thing. A plague of
all cowards! I say still.

How now, wool-sack? what mutter you?

A king's son! If I do not beat thee out of thy kingdom with a dagger
of lath, and drive all thy subjects afore thee like a flock of
wild-geese, I'll never wear hair on my face more. You Prince of Wales!

Why, you whoreson round man, what's the matter?

Are not you a coward? answer me to that: — and Pointz there?

Zwounds, ye fat paunch, an ye call me coward, by the Lord, I'll
stab thee.

I call thee coward! I'll see thee damn'd ere I call thee coward:
but I would give a thousand pound, I could run as fast as thou canst.
You are straight enough in the shoulders; you care not who sees your
back: call you that backing of your friends? A plague upon such
backing! give me them that will face me. — Give me a cup of sack:
I am a rogue, if I drunk to-day.

O villain! thy lips are scarce wiped since thou drunk'st last.

All is one for that. A plague of all cowards! still say I.


What's the matter?

What's the matter? there be four of us here have ta'en a thousand
pound this day morning.

Where is it, Jack? where is it?

Where is it! taken from us it is: a hundred upon poor four of us!

What, a hundred, man?

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