« EdellinenJatka »
attributed solely to the desire of the poet to produce dramatic effect; since, at the time when the conspiracy of the duke of Aumerle was discovered, Prince Henry was but twelve years old ; and therefore too young as yet to be a partaker in the debaucheries of London taverns. It is also extremely probable, that the licentious habits, attributed to him by the English chroniclers of the sixteentli century, have been greatly exaggerated.
After the deposition and death of the unfortunate Richard.
the attention of Henry is directed to the incursions of the Scots, who, under the conduct of Douglas, advance to the borders of England, where they are totally routed by the celebrated Percy, surnamed Hotspur. The intelligence of this victory no sooner reaches the ears of the king, than, regardless of the debt of gratitude due to the powerful family of the Percies, he demands the prisoners taken in the late struggle, among whom was the renowned Douglas; contrary to the practice of those times, when the custody and destination of captives were determined at the discretion of the conquering general. Exasperated at this unexpected mandate, Hotspur dismisses all his prisoners without ransom, and with his relatives and dependents raises the standard of revolt against the sovereign, whose elevation they had so recently effected. Having formed a treaty of alliance with the Scottish and Welsh leaders, the insurgents arrive at Shrewsbury, where they are encountered by the king in person. A decisive battle ensues, in which Hotspur is slain, and the rebels sustain a signal defeat. The remainder of this drama is occupied with the amusing detail of the frolics of the prince of Wales and his merry companions, among whom sir Jobri Falstaff occupies the most conspicuous part.
KING HENRY THE FOURIN.
sons to the king. EARL OF WESTMORELAND,
friends to the king.
LADY PERCY, wife to Hotspur, and sister to Mortimer.
Lords, Officers, Sheriff, Vintner, Chamberlain, Drawers, Two
Carriers, Travellers, and Attendants.
KING HENRY I V.
London. A room in the palace. Enter KING HENRY, WESTMORELAND, SIR WALTER
BLUNT, and others. K. Hen. So shaken as we are, so wan with care, Find we a time for frighted peace to pant, And breathe short-winded accents of new broils 1 To be commenced in stronds ? afar remote. No more the thirsty entrance of this soil Shall daub her lips with her own children's blood; No more shall trenching war channel her fields, Nor bruise her flowrets with the armed hoofs Of hostile paces : those opposed eyes, Which, like the meteors of a troubled heaven,
I Let us indulge in a short interval of peace, that we may recover breath to propose new wars. ?
Strands, banks of the sea.
All of one nature, of one substance bred,
West. My liege, this haste was hot in question, And
many limits? of the charge set down