A line-by-line translation

Henry IV, Part 1

Henry IV, Part 1 Translation Act 2, Scene 2

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Enter PRINCE HENRY, POINS, BARDOLPH, and PETO

POINS

Come, shelter, shelter! I have removed Falstaff’s horse, and he frets like a gummed velvet.

POINS

Come on, hide yourselves, hide yourselves! I have taken Falstaff's horse and he's coming apart at the seams

PRINCE HENRY

Stand close.

PRINCE HENRY

Hide. 

Exit POINS, BARDOLPH, and PETO exit

Enter FALSTAFF

FALSTAFF

Poins! Poins, and be hanged! Poins!

FALSTAFF

Poins! Damn you, Poins! Poins!

PRINCE HENRY

Peace, you fat-kidneyed rascal. What a brawling dost thou keep!

PRINCE HENRY

Be quiet, you fat-bellied idiot! Why are you making so much noise?!

FALSTAFF

Where’s Poins, Hal?

FALSTAFF

Where's Poins, Hal?

PRINCE HENRY

He is walked up to the top of the hill. I’ll go seek him.

PRINCE HENRY

He has walked up that hill. I'll go and find him.

Exit PRINCE HENRY

FALSTAFF

I am accursed to rob in that thief’s company. The rascal hath removed my horse and tied him I know not where. If I travel but four foot by the square further afoot, I shall break my wind. Well, I doubt not but to die a fair death for all this, if I ’scape hanging for killing that rogue. I have forsworn his company hourly any time this two-and-twenty years, and yet I am bewitched with the rogue’s company. If the rascal hath not given me medicines to make me love him, I’ll be hanged. It could not be else: I have drunk medicines.— Poins! Hal! A plague upon you both.—Bardolph! Peto!— I’llstarve ere I’ll rob a foot further. An ’twere not as good a deed as drink to turn true man and to leave theserogues, I am the veriest varlet that ever chewed with atooth. Eight yards of uneven ground is threescore and ten miles afoot with me, and the stony-hearted villains know it well enough. A plague upon it when thieves cannot be true one to another!

FALSTAFF

I do not want to rob anyone with that thief around. He has stolen my horse and I have no idea where he's tied him up. If I have to walk even four more feet, I will be out of breath. Although I expect to die an honorable death in spite of this, if I don't get hanged for killing that thief. For the last twenty-two years, I have sworn every hour that I will never speak to him again, but I am still delighted by his company. He must have given me a potion to make me love him—there's no other possibility. Yeah, that must be it! I must have drunk a potion! Poins! Hal! Oh, damn you both. Bardolph! Peto! I'll die before I take another step. If I shouldn't just become an honest man and leave these idiots, then I am the worst scoundrel that ever lived. Eight yards of rough ground feels like seventy miles of walking for me, and those hard-hearted villains know that! What good is it when there is no honor among thieves. 

They whistle.

Whew!

Whew!

Enter PRINCE HENRY, POINS, PETO, and BARDOLPH

A plague upon you all! Give me my horse, you rogues. Give me my horse and be hanged!

Damn you all! Give me my horse, you devils. Give me my horse and to hell with all of you! 

PRINCE HENRY

Peace, you fat guts! Lie down, lay thine ear close to the ground, and list if thou canst hear the tread of travelers.

PRINCE HENRY

Be quiet, you fat thing. Lie down, put your ear close to the ground, and listen to see if you can hear the travelers' footsteps. 

FALSTAFF

Have you any levers to lift me up again being down? 'Sblood, I’ll not bear mine own flesh so far afoot againfor all the coin in thy father’s Exchequer. What a plague mean you to colt me thus?

FALSTAFF

Do you have a machine to lift me back up again once I'm down? I swear to God, I wouldn't walk all this way again even for all the money in your father's treasury. Why do you cheat me and horse around like this?

PRINCE HENRY

Thou liest. Thou art not colted; thou art uncolted.

PRINCE HENRY

You are lying. How can we horse around when we don't even have a horse?

FALSTAFF

I prithee, good Prince Hal, help me to my horse, good king’s son.

FALSTAFF

Please, my good Prince Hal, tell me where my horse is, you good Prince. 

PRINCE HENRY

Out, you rogue! Shall I be your ostler?

PRINCE HENRY

Leave it, you scoundrel! Am I supposed to be your stable boy?!

FALSTAFF

Hang thyself in thine own heir-apparent garters! If I be ta'en, I’ll peach for this. An I have not ballads made on you all and sung to filthy tunes, let a cup of sack be my poison—when a jest is so forward, and afoot too! I hate it.

FALSTAFF

Go hang yourself in your own princely garters! If I'm captured, I will tell them all about you. If I don't make them sing dirty ballads about you, then poison me with a cup of wine. I hate it when a joke is taken too far, and leaves me without a horse!

Enter GADSHILL

GADSHILL

Stand.

GADSHILL

Stop.

FALSTAFF

So I do, against my will.

FALSTAFF

I am, even if I don't want to. 

POINS

O, ’tis our setter. I know his voice, Bardolph. —What news?

POINS

Oh, it's the one who set up this robbery. I recognize his voice, Bardolph.

[To GADSHILL] What's happening?

GADSHILL

Case you, case you. On with your vizards. There’s moneyof the King’s coming down the hill. 'Tis going to the King’s Exchequer.

GADSHILL

Cover up, cover up. Put on your masks. Disguise yourselves.  There's tax revenue coming down the hill, bound for the royal treasury.

FALSTAFF

You lie, you rogue. 'Tis going to the King’s Tavern.

FALSTAFF

You are lying, you rascal. It's going to the King's bank. 

GADSHILL

There’s enough to make us all.

GADSHILL

There's enough to make all of our fortunes. 

FALSTAFF

To be hanged.

FALSTAFF

And guarantee that we are hanged.

PRINCE HENRY

Sirs, you four shall front them in the narrow lane. NedPoins and I will walk lower. If they ’scape from your encounter, then they light on us.

PRINCE HENRY

Sirs, you four will attack them in the narrow lane. Ned Poins and I will go further down the way. If they manage to escape from your attack, then they will meet us instead. 

PETO

How many be there of them?

PETO

How many of them are there?

GADSHILL

Some eight or ten.

GADSHILL

About eight or ten.

FALSTAFF

Zounds, will they not rob us?

FALSTAFF

Heavens, won't they just rob us instead?

PRINCE HENRY

What, a coward, Sir John Paunch?

PRINCE HENRY

Oh, are you a coward, Sir John Pot-Belly?

FALSTAFF

Indeed, I am not John of Gaunt, your grandfather, but yet no coward, Hal.

FALSTAFF

Certainly I am no John of Gaunt, your grandfather. But I'm also not a coward, Hal. 

PRINCE HENRY

Well, we leave that to the proof.

PRINCE HENRY

Well, let's see about that. 

POINS

Sirrah Jack, thy horse stands behind the hedge. When thou needest him, there thou shalt find him. Farewell, and stand fast.

POINS

Sir Jack, your horse is waiting behind that hedge. When you need him, you will find him there. Goodbye, and get ready.

FALSTAFF

Now cannot I strike him, if I should be hanged.

FALSTAFF

I can't hit him now, or I'd be hanged.

PRINCE HENRY

[aside to POINS ] Ned, where are our disguises?

PRINCE HENRY

[To POINS so that only he can hear] Ned, where are our disguises?

POINS

[aside to PRINCE HENRY ] Here, hard by. Stand close.

POINS

[To PRINCE HENRY so that only he can hear] They are here, right by us. Now let's hide.

Exeunt PRINCE HENRY and POINS

FALSTAFF

Now, my masters, happy man be his dole, say I. Every man to his business.

FALSTAFF

Now, my men, may luck be with us! Get ready to go. 

Enter the TRAVELERS

FIRST TRAVELER

Come, neighbor, the boy shall lead our horses down the hill.We’ll walk afoot awhile and ease our legs.

FIRST TRAVELER

Come on, friend. This boy will take our horses down the hill. Let's walk for a little while and stretch our legs. 

THIEVES

Stand!

THIEVES

Freeze!

TRAVELERS

Jesus bless us!

TRAVELERS

Jesus bless us!

FALSTAFF

Strike! Down with them! Cut the villains' throats! Ah, whoreson caterpillars, bacon-fed knaves, they hate us youth. Down with them! Fleece them!

FALSTAFF

Attack! Get them! Cut the scoundrels' throats! Oh, vile parasites! Overfed idiots! They hate young people like us. Get them! Take everything they've got!

TRAVELERS

O, we are undone, both we and ours forever!

TRAVELERS

Oh, we are completely ruined!

FALSTAFF

Hang, you gorbellied knaves! Are you undone? No, you fat chuffs. I would your store were here. On, bacons, on! What, you knaves, young men must live. You are grandjurors, are you? We’ll jure you, faith.

FALSTAFF

God, you potbellied morons! Are you completely ruined? No, you fat penny-pinchers. I wish all of your possessions were here. Come on, you pigs, come on! What's wrong, you idiots? Young men have to live somehow. You're Grand Jurors, aren't you? Well, we'll show you some justice. 

Here they rob them and bind them. Exeunt

Enter PRINCE HENRY and POINS

PRINCE HENRY

The thieves have bound the true men. Now could thou andI rob the thieves and go merrily to London, it would beargument for a week, laughter for a month, and a good jest forever.

PRINCE HENRY

The thieves have tied up the honest men. Now if we can rob the thieves, we can go happily to London. And this would be something we could talk about for a week, laugh about for a month, and remember as a good joke forever.

POINS

Stand close, I hear them coming.

POINS

Hide—I hear them coming. 

PRINCE HENRY and POINS hide. Enter the thieves again

FALSTAFF

Come, my masters, let us share, and then to horse before day. An the Prince and Poins be not two arrant cowards, there’s no equity stirring. There’s no more valor in that Poins than in a wild duck.

FALSTAFF

Come on, men, let's share out this money and then get going before it is light. If the Prince and Poins aren't two complete cowards, then there's no truth in the world. Poins doesn't have any more courage than a wild duck!

As they are sharing, PRINCE HENRY and POINS set upon them.

PRINCE HENRY

Your money!

PRINCE HENRY

Give us your money!

POINS

Villains!

POINS

Villains!

They all run away, and FALSTAFF, after a blow or two, runs away too, leaving the booty behind them.

PRINCE HENRY

Got with much ease. Now merrily to horse. The thieves are all scattered, and possessed with fear So strongly that they dare not meet each other. Each takes his fellow for an officer. Away, good Ned. Falstaff sweats to death, And lards the lean earth as he walks along. Were ’t not for laughing, I should pity him.

PRINCE HENRY

How easy was that? Now we can ride off happily. The thieves have all run away, so scared that they won't even want to meet each other. Each of them mistakes his companion for an officer of the law! Let's go, Ned. Falstaff is sweating so much that he drips fat onto the ground as he walks along. If it wasn't so funny, I would feel sorry for him.

POINS

How the fat rogue roared!

POINS

How that fat rascal screamed!

Exeunt

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Lani strange
About the Translator: Lani Strange

Lani is currently studying for an MA in Shakespeare Studies at King's College London and Shakespeare's Globe. She has a BA in English and Latin Literature from the University of Warwick and worked as a Teacher of Drama for a year in between her undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. She has a love for all things theatrical and spends all of her free time either watching theatre or taking part in it herself.