Enter Falstaff and Bardolph
Bardolph, get thee before to Coventry. Fill me
a bottle of sack. Our soldiers shall march through. We'll
to Sutton Coldfield tonight.
Will you give me money, captain?
Lay out, lay out.
This bottle makes an angel.
An if it do, take it for thy labour – and if it
make twenty, take them all, I'll answer the coinage. Bid
answer (v.) 4
suffer the consequences [for], be accountable [for]
my lieutenant Peto meet me at town's end.
I will, captain. Farewell.
If I be not ashamed of my soldiers, I am a
soused gurnet. I have misused the King's press damnably.
type of fish with a disproportionately large head [thus used as an insult]
I have got in exchange of a hundred and fifty
soldiers three hundred and odd pounds. I press me
none but good householders, yeomen's sons, enquire
yeoman (n.) 1
man who owns property but is not a gentleman; land-holding farmer
me out contracted bachelors, such as had been asked
twice on the banns, such a commodity of warm slaves as
had as lief hear the devil as a drum, such as fear the
report of a caliver worse than a struck fowl or a hurt wild
duck. I pressed me none but such toasts-and-butter,
with hearts in their bellies no bigger than pins' heads,
and they have bought out their services. And now my
whole charge consists of ancients, corporals, lieutenants,
gentlemen of companies – slaves as ragged as Lazarus in
the painted cloth, where the glutton's dogs licked his
sores. And such as indeed were never soldiers, but
discarded unjust serving-men, younger sons to younger
brothers, revolted tapsters, and ostlers trade-fallen, the
cankers of a calm world and a long peace, ten times more
dishonourable-ragged than an old fazed ancient. And
such have I to fill up the rooms of them as have bought
out their services, that you would think that I had a
hundred and fifty tattered prodigals lately come from
swine-keeping, from eating draff and husks. A mad
fellow met me on the way, and told me I had unloaded
all the gibbets and pressed the dead bodies. No eye hath
seen such scarecrows. I'll not march through Coventry
with them, that's flat. Nay, and the villains march wide
betwixt the legs as if they had gyves on, for indeed I had
the most of them out of prison. There's not a shirt and a
half in all my company; and the half shirt is two napkins
tacked together and thrown over the shoulders like a
herald's coat without sleeves. And the shirt to say the truth
the truth stolen from my host at Saint Alban's, or the red-nose
innkeeper of Daventry. But that's all one, they'll
find linen enough on every hedge.
Enter the Prince and the Lord of Westmorland
How now, blown Jack? How now, quilt?
What, Hal! How now, mad wag? What a devil
dost thou in Warwickshire? My good Lord of Westmorland,
I cry you mercy, I thought your honour had
already been at Shrewsbury.
Faith, Sir John,'tis more than time that
I were there, and you too, but my powers are there
already. The King I can tell you looks for us all, we must
away all night.
Tut, never fear me: I am as vigilant as a cat to
I think, to steal cream indeed, for thy theft
hath already made thee butter. But tell me, Jack, whose
fellows are these that come after?
Mine, Hal, mine.
I did never see such pitiful rascals.
Tut, tut, good enough to toss, food for powder,
food for powder, they'll fill a pit as well as better.
Tush, man, mortal men, mortal men.
Ay, but Sir John, methinks they are
exceeding poor and bare, too beggarly.
Faith, for their poverty I know not where they
had that. And for their bareness I am sure they never
learned that of me.
No, I'll be sworn, unless you call three
fingers in the ribs bare. But sirrah, make haste. Percy is
already in the field.
What, is the King encamped?
He is, Sir John: I fear we shall stay
To the latter end of a fray, and the beginning of a feast
Fits a dull fighter and a keen guest.