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Henry V

Henry V Translation Act 3, Scene 6

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Enter GOWER and FLUELLEN, meeting

GOWER

How now, Captain Fluellen? Come you from the bridge?

GOWER

Hello, Captain Fluellen. Are you coming from the bridge?

FLUELLEN

I assure you, there is very excellent services committed at the bridge.

FLUELLEN

I assure you, there are very excellent things happening at the bridge.

GOWER

Is the duke of Exeter safe?

GOWER

Is the duke of Exeter safe?

FLUELLEN

The duke of Exeter is as magnanimous as Agamemnon, and a man that I love and honor with my soul and my heart and my duty and my life and my living and my uttermost power. He is not, God be praised and blessed, any hurt in the world, but keeps the bridge most valiantly, with excellent discipline. There is an aunchient lieutenant there at the pridge. I think in my very conscience he isas valiant a man as Mark Antony, and he is a man of no estimation in the world, but I did see him do as gallantservice.

FLUELLEN

Exeter has as great a soul as the Greek king Agamemnon, and he's a man I love and honor with all my soul and my heart and my duty and my life and my job and as much as I can. He is not, God be praised and blessed, at all hurt, but guards the bridge bravely, with excellent strategy. There is an ancient lieutenant there at the bridge. I think truly he is as brave a man as the Roman hero Mark Anthony, and he is not at all an important man, but I saw him acting as bravely as those who are.

GOWER

What do you call him?

GOWER

What is he called?

FLUELLEN

He is called Aunchient Pistol.

FLUELLEN

He is called Ancient Pistol.

GOWER

I know him not.

GOWER

I don't know him.

Enter PISTOL

FLUELLEN

Here is the man.

FLUELLEN

Here he is.

PISTOL

Captain, I thee beseech to do me favors.The duke of Exeter doth love thee well.

PISTOL

Captain, please do me a favor. The duke of Exeter loves you.

FLUELLEN

Ay, I praise God, and I have merited some love at his hands.

FLUELLEN

Yes, I thank God, and I have deserved some love from him.

PISTOL

Bardolph, a soldier firm and sound of heart And of buxom valor, hath, by cruel Fate And giddy Fortune’s furious fickle wheel, That goddess blind That stands upon the rolling restless stone—

PISTOL

Bardolph, a strong and good-hearted soldier and of great courage has, by cruel Fate and light-headed Fortune's crazy unreliable wheel, that blind goddess who stands on the rolling restless stone—

FLUELLEN

By your patience, Aunchient Pistol, Fortune is painted blind, with a muffler afore her eyes, to signify to you that Fortune is blind; and she is painted also with a wheel to signify to you, which is the moral of it, that she is turning and inconstant, and mutability and variation; and her foot, look you, is fixed upon a spherical stone, which rolls and rolls and rolls. In good truth, the poet makes a most excellent description of it. Fortune is an excellent moral.

FLUELLEN

Excuse me, Ancient Pistol, Fortune is depicted as blind, with a scarf before her eyes, to signify to you that Fortune is blind; and she is also depicted with a wheel to signify to you, which is the moral of this, that she is turning and unpredictable, and full of change and variation; and her foot, you see, is planted on a round stone, which rolls and rolls and rolls. Truly, the poet describes it excellently. Fortune is an excellent moral lesson.

PISTOL

Fortune is Bardolph’s foe and frowns on him, For he hath stolen a pax and hangèd must he be. A damnèd death! Let gallows gape for dog, let man go free, And let not hemp his windpipe suffocate. But Exeter hath given the doom of death For pax of little price. Therefore go speak—the duke will hear thy voice— And let not Bardolph’s vital thread be cut With edge of penny cord and vile reproach. Speak, Captain, for his life, and I will thee requite.

PISTOL

Fortune is Bardolph's enemy and glares at him, because he has stolen a pax and he must be hanged. A terrible death! Let dogs be hanged, let men go free, and rope not suffocate their windpipes. But Exeter has condemned him to death for a cheap pax. So go speak—the duke will listen to you—and don't let Bardolph's life be cut short by the edge of a cheap rope and terrible shame. Speak, Captain, to save him, and I will pay you back.

FLUELLEN

Aunchient Pistol, I do partly understand your meaning.

FLUELLEN

Ancient Pistol, I partly understand your meaning.

PISTOL

Why then, rejoice therefore.

PISTOL

Well, then rejoice.

FLUELLEN

Certainly, aunchient, it is not a thing to rejoice at, for if, look you, he were my brother, I would desire theduke to use his good pleasure and put him to execution,for discipline ought to be used.

FLUELLEN

Certainly, ancient, it's nothing to rejoice at, because, see, even if he were my brother, I would ask the duke to use his own judgement and execute him, because discipline is important.

PISTOL

Die and be damned, and figo for thy friendship!

PISTOL

Die and be damned, and a fig for your friendship!

FLUELLEN

It is well.

FLUELLEN

Very well.

PISTOL

The fig of Spain!

PISTOL

A Spanish fig!

Exit

FLUELLEN

Very good.

FLUELLEN

Very good.

GOWER

Why, this is an arrant counterfeit rascal. I remember him now, a bawd, a cutpurse.

GOWER

What, he's a deceitful criminal. I remember him now, a pimp, a pickpocket.

FLUELLEN

I’ll assure you, he uttered as prave words at the pridge as you shall see in a summer’s day. But it is very well; what he has spoke to me, that is well, I warrant you, when time is serve.

FLUELLEN

I assure you, he spoke as brave words at the bridge as any you'll hear on a summer's day. But very well; what he has spoken to me, well, I tell you, when the time comes.

GOWER

Why, ’tis a gull, a fool, a rogue, that now and then goes to the wars to grace himself at his return into London under the form of a soldier. And such fellows areperfect in the great commanders' names, and they will learn you by rote where services were done —at such and such a sconce, at such a breach, at such a convoy; who came off bravely, who was shot, who disgraced, what terms the enemy stood on. And this they con perfectly inthe phrase of war, which they trick up with new-tuned oaths; and what a beard of the general’s cut and a horrid suit of the camp will do among foaming bottles and ale-washed wits is wonderful to be thought on. But you must learn to know such slanders of the age, or elseyou may be marvelously mistook.

GOWER

He's a fraud, a fool, a good-for-nothing, who now and then goes to the wars so he can call himself a soldier when he returns to London. Fellows like that know all the great generals' names by heart, and they will learn all about where battles happened—in such and such a corner, at such and such a pass, on such a ship; who acted bravely, who was shot, who was disgraced, what agreement the enemy came to. And they learn perfectly how to say this in military vocabulary, to which they add newly-invented oaths. And it's amazing what a beard cut like a general's and a frightening military uniform can get you among foamy bottles and drunk people. But you must learn to recognize people who lie in this way, or you will be completely deceived.

FLUELLEN

I tell you what, Captain Gower. I do perceive he is notthe man that he would gladly make show to the world he is. If I find a hole in his coat, I will tell him my mind.

FLUELLEN

I tell you what, Captain Gower. I do see he is not the man he wants the world to think he is. If I find a hole in his coat, I will tell him what I think of him.

Drum and colors Enter KING HENRY, GLOUCESTER, and soldiers

Hark you, the king is coming, and I must speak with himfrom the pridge.—God pless your Majesty.

Listen, the king is coming, and I must speak to him from the bridge.

[To HENRY] God bless your majesty.

KING HENRY

How now, Fluellen, cam’st thou from the bridge?

KING HENRY

Hello, Fluellen, did you come from the bridge?

FLUELLEN

Ay, so please your Majesty. The duke of Exeter has verygallantly maintained the pridge. The French is gone off, look you, and there is gallant and most prave passages. Marry, th' athversary was have possession of the pridge, but he is enforced to retire, and the duke of Exeter is master of the pridge. I can tell your Majesty, the duke is a prave man.

FLUELLEN

Yes, your majesty. The duke of Exeter has very bravely held on to the bridge. The French have gone off, see, and there have been very brave fights. The enemy had taken possession of the bridge, but was forced to retreat, and the duke of Exeter is holding the bridge. I can tell your Majesty, the duke is a brave man.

KING HENRY

What men have you lost, Fluellen?

KING HENRY

What men have you lost, Fluellen?

FLUELLEN

The perdition of th' athversary hath been very great, reasonable great. Marry, for my part, I think the duke hath lost never a man, but one that is like to be executed for robbing a church, one Bardolph, if your Majesty know the man. His face is all bubukles and whelks and knobs and flames o' fire; and his lips blows at his nose, and it is like a coal of fire, sometimes plue and sometimes red, but his nose is executed, and his fire’s out.

FLUELLEN

The enemy's loss has been very great, reasonably great. For my part, I don't think the duke has lost a single man, except one who has likely been executed for robbing a church, a certain Bardolph, if your Majesty knows the man. His face is covered in swellings and pimples and bumps and fiery flames, and his lips blow up his nose, which is like a coal in a fire, sometimes blue and sometimes red, but his nose has been executed and his fire is out.

KING HENRY

We would have all such offenders so cut off, and we give express charge that in our marches through the country there be nothing compelled from the villages, nothing taken but paid for, none of the French upbraidedor abused in disdainful language; for when lenity and cruelty play for a kingdom, the gentler gamester is the soonest winner.

KING HENRY

I want all such criminals killed that way, and I particularly command that in our march through the country nothing is stolen from the villages, nothing taken unless it's paid for, none of the French scolded or insulted in rude language. Because when kindness and cruelty compete for a kingdom, the gentlest player wins first.

Tucket Enter MONTJOY

MONTJOY

You know me by my habit.

MONTJOY

You know who I am by how I'm dressed.

KING HENRY

Well then, I know thee. What shall I know of thee?

KING HENRY

Well then, I know who you are. What will I know from you?

MONTJOY

My master’s mind.

MONTJOY

My master's thoughts.

KING HENRY

Unfold it.

KING HENRY

Reveal them.

MONTJOY

Thus says my king: “Say thou to Harry of England, though we seemed dead, we did but sleep. Advantage is a better soldier than rashness. Tell him we could have rebuked him at Harfleur, but that we thought not good tobruise an injury till it were full ripe. Now we speak upon our cue, and our voice is imperial. England shall repent his folly, see his weakness, and admire our sufferance. Bid him therefore consider of his ransom, which must proportion the losses we have borne, the subjects we have lost, the disgrace we have digested, which, in weight to reanswer, his pettiness would bow under. For our losses, his exchequer is too poor; for th' effusion of our blood, the muster of his kingdom toofaint a number; and for our disgrace, his own person, kneeling at our feet but a weak and worthless satisfaction. To this, add defiance, and tell him, for conclusion, he hath betrayed his followers, whose condemnation is pronounced.” So far my king and master; so much my office.

MONTJOY

My king says this: "Tell Harry king of England that although we seemed dead, we were just asleep. Having the advantage is a better thing in war than foolhardiness. Tell him we could have taught him a lesson at Harfleur, but we didn't think it would be worth hitting a bruise until it was completely ripe. Now it's time for us to speak, and our voice is royal. The king of England will regret his folly, see his weakness, and admire our patience. So ask him to consider what his ransom will be, which must pay for the losses we suffered, the subjects we lost, the shame we were subjected to, which if we paid him back in kind would completely overwhelm his minor kingdom. As for our losses, his treasury is too poor; as for the bloodshed, his kingdom doesn't have enough inhabitants; and as for our shame, making him kneel at our feet would be only a weak and worthless revenge. To this, add our scorn for him and tell him, finally, he has betrayed his followers, who will be punished." That's what my king and master said. Now I've done my job.

KING HENRY

What is thy name? I know thy quality.

KING HENRY

What is your name? I know what kind of man you are.

MONTJOY

Montjoy.

MONTJOY

Montjoy.

KING HENRY

Thou dost thy office fairly. Turn thee back, And tell thy king I do not seek him now But could be willing to march on to Calais Without impeachment, for, to say the sooth, Though ’tis no wisdom to confess so much Unto an enemy of craft and vantage, My people are with sickness much enfeebled, My numbers lessened, and those few I have Almost no better than so many French, Who when they were in health, I tell thee, herald, I thought upon one pair of English legs Did march three Frenchmen. Yet, forgive me, God, That I do brag thus. This your air of France Hath blown that vice in me. I must repent. Go therefore, tell thy master: here I am. My ransom is this frail and worthless trunk, My army but a weak and sickly guard, Yet, God before, tell him we will come on Though France himself and such another neighbor Stand in our way. There’s for thy labor, Montjoy. Go bid thy master well advise himself: If we may pass, we will; if we be hindered, We shall your tawny ground with your red blood Discolor. And so, Montjoy, fare you well. The sum of all our answer is but this: We would not seek a battle as we are, Nor, as we are, we say we will not shun it. So tell your master.

KING HENRY

You do your job well. Turn back  and tell your king I'm not looking for him now but could be willing to march on to Calais without fighting. To tell the truth, although it's not wise to confess so much to an enemy who is so crafty and has such an advantage, my people have been weakened by sickness. I've lost soldiers and the few I have left are almost worth no more than as many Frenchman. When they were healthy, I tell you, messenger, I thought that one pair of Englishmen was worth three Frenchmen. But forgive me, God, for bragging in this way. Your French air has blown this sin into me. I must repent. So go, tell your master: here I am. My ransom is this weak and worthless body, my army is a weak and sickly force, but God willing, tell him we would come fight him even if France itself and another country of the same size stood in our way. There's payment for your work, Montjoy. Go ask your master to consider: if we can keep going, we will. If we are stopped, we will stain your dark ground with your red blood. So, Montjoy, farewell. The summary of my answer is this: we wouldn't go looking for a fight as we are, but, as we are, we say we won't avoid one. Tell your master that.

MONTJOY

I shall deliver so. Thanks to your Highness.

MONTJOY

I will. Thank you, your Highness.

Exit

GLOUCESTER

I hope they will not come upon us now.

GLOUCESTER

I hope they don't attack us now.

KING HENRY

We are in God’s hand, brother, not in theirs. March to the bridge. It now draws toward night. Beyond the river we’ll encamp ourselves, And on tomorrow bid them march away.

KING HENRY

We are in God's hands, brother, not in theirs. March to the bridge. It's almost night. We'll camp across the river, and tomorrow march away.

Exeunt

Henry v
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