Henry V

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

30Walking from watch to watch, from tent to tent?
Let him cry, “Praise and glory on his head!”
For forth he goes and visits all his host,
Bids them good morrow with a modest smile,
And calls them brothers, friends, and countrymen.
35Upon his royal face there is no note
How dread an army hath enrounded him,
Nor doth he dedicate one jot of color
Unto the weary and all-watchèd night,
But freshly looks and overbears attaint
40With cheerful semblance and sweet majesty,
That every wretch, pining and pale before,
Beholding him, plucks comfort from his looks.
A largess universal, like the sun,
His liberal eye doth give to everyone,
45Thawing cold fear, that mean and gentle all
Behold, as may unworthiness define,
A little touch of Harry in the night.
And so our scene must to the battle fly,
Where, Oh, for pity, we shall much disgrace,
50With four or five most vile and ragged foils
Right ill-disposed in brawl ridiculous,
The name of Agincourt. Yet sit and see,
Minding true things by what their mock'ries be.
them brothers, friends, and countrymen. There is no indication of the mighty army that surrounds them in his expression, nor has the long, sleepless night robbed his face of an ounce of color. Instead, he looks fresh and covers any signs of fatigue with a show of cheerfulness and sweet majesty that every sad and pale wretch takes comfort in when they see him. His generous eye notices everyone, doling out a bounty as far-reaching as the sun, thawing cold fear, so that low and well-born alike may all experience (for want of a better way of putting it) a little touch of Harry in the night. With that, our scene rushes on toward the battle, which we will represent with four or five worn-out fencing foils, a travesty of battle—forgive us!—that disgraces the name of Agincourt. Still, stay to watch, imagining the way it really was from our own inadequate imitation.
Exit
The CHORUS exits.