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 Westmoreland,
Our duty this way lies. For God's sake, come.
Another king? They grow like Hydra's heads.
I am the Douglas, fatal to all those
That wear those colours 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. So 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.
Cheerly, my lord. How fares your Grace?
Sir Nicholas Gawsey hath for succour sent,
And so hath Clifton. I'll to Clifton straight.
Stay and breathe awhile.
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 labour of your son.
Make up to Clifton; I'll to Sir Nicholas Gawsey.
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 honours on thy crest
I'll crop to make a garland for my head.
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, who 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 slave, 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 wert sensible of courtesy,
I should not make so dear a show of zeal.
But let my favours 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!
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 to-day,
Though many dearer, in this bloody fray.
Embowell'd will I see thee by-and-by;
Till then in blood by noble Percy lie.
Embowell'd? If thou embowel me to-day, I'll give you leave to
powder me and eat me too to-morrow. '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 valour is discretion; in the
which better part I have saved 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 [stabs him], with a new wound in your thigh, come you
along with me.
He takes up Hotspur on his hack. [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 's Percy. If your father
will do me any honour, 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 valour 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.
This is the strangest tale that ever I beard.
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.