My Lord of Orleans and my Lord High Constable, you talk of
horse and armour?
You are as well provided of both as any prince in the
What a long night is this! I will not change my horse with
any that treads but on four pasterns. Ca, ha! he bounds from the
earth as if his entrails were hairs; le cheval volant, the
Pegasus, chez les narines de feu! When I bestride him I soar, I
am a hawk. He trots the air; the earth sings when he touches it;
the basest horn of his hoof is more musical than the pipe of
And of the heat of the ginger. It is a beast for Perseus:
he is pure air and fire; and the dull elements of earth and water
never appear in him, but only in patient stillness while his
rider mounts him; he is indeed a horse, and all other jades you
may call beasts.
Indeed, my lord, it is a most absolute and excellent
It is the prince of palfreys; his neigh is like the
bidding of a monarch, and his countenance enforces homage.
Nay, the man hath no wit that cannot, from the rising of
the lark to the lodging of the lamb, vary deserved praise on my
palfrey. It is a theme as fluent as the sea: turn the sands into
eloquent tongues, and my horse is argument for them all: 'tis a
subject for a sovereign to reason on, and for a sovereign's
sovereign to ride on; and for the world- familiar to us and
unknown- to lay apart their particular functions and wonder at
him. I once writ a sonnet in his praise and began thus: 'Wonder
I have heard a sonnet begin so to one's mistress.
Then did they imitate that which I compos'd to my courser;
for my horse is my mistress.
A valiant and most expert gentleman. Would it were day!
Alas, poor Harry of England! he longs not for the dawning as we
What a wretched and peevish fellow is this King of
England, to mope with his fat-brain'd followers so far out of his
If the English had any apprehension, they would run
That they lack; for if their heads had any intellectual
armour, they could never wear such heavy head-pieces.
That island of England breeds very valiant creatures;
their mastiffs are of unmatchable courage.
Foolish curs, that run winking into the mouth of a Russian
bear, and have their heads crush'd like rotten apples! You may as
well say that's a valiant flea that dare eat his breakfast on the
lip of a lion.
Just, just! and the men do sympathise with the mastiffs
in robustious and rough coming on, leaving their wits with their
wives; and then give them great meals of beef and iron and steel;
they will eat like wolves and fight like devils.
Ay, but these English are shrewdly out of beef.
Then shall we find to-morrow they have only stomachs to
eat, and none to fight. Now is it time to arm. Come, shall we
It is now two o'clock; but let me see- by ten
We shall have each a hundred Englishmen.