Henry IV, Part ii: Act II, Scene iii


Henry IV, Part ii      Act II, Scene iii        Lady Percy

This speech is used in our interview with Kelley Curran.

Click here to open a scanned version.

Click here to open up First Folio version.

9    O yet, for God’s sake, go not to these wars!
10   The time was, father, that you broke your word,
11   When you were more endeared to it than now;
12   When your own Percy, when my heart’s dear Harry,
13   Threw many a northward look to see his father
14   Bring up his powers; but he did long in vain.
15   Who then persuaded you to stay at home?
16   There were two honours lost, yours and your son’s.
17   For yours, the God of heaven brighten it!
18   For his, it stuck upon him as the sun
19   In the grey vault of heaven, and by his light
20   Did all the chivalry of England move
21   To do brave acts: he was indeed the glass
22   Wherein the noble youth did dress themselves:
23   He had no legs that practised not his gait;
24   And speaking thick, which nature made his blemish,
25   Became the accents of the valiant;
26   For those that could speak low and tardily
27   Would turn their own perfection to abuse,
28   To seem like him: so that in speech, in gait,
29   In diet, in affections of delight,
30   In military rules, humours of blood,
31   He was the mark and glass, copy and book,
32   That fashion’d others. And him, O wondrous him!
33   O miracle of men! him did you leave,
34   Second to none, unseconded by you,
35   To look upon the hideous god of war
36   In disadvantage; to abide a field
37   Where nothing but the sound of Hotspur’s name
38   Did seem defensible: so you left him.
39   Never, O never, do his ghost the wrong
40   To hold your honour more precise and nice
41   With others than with him! let them alone:
42   The marshal and the archbishop are strong:
43   Had my sweet Harry had but half their numbers,
44   To-day might I, hanging on Hotspur’s neck,
45   Have talk’d of Monmouth’s grave.

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