Henry IV Part 2

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 1 Scene 2

page Act 1 Scene 2 Page 2

Original Text

Modern Text

25mine, I can assure him. What said Master Dommelton about
the satin for my short cloak and my slops?
Prince brags that he’s been a full-grown man since before he was born. He can keep that title, for all I care; I have no affection for him now, I can assure him. What did Master Dommelton say about the satin for my cape and baggy trousers?


He said, sir, you should procure him better assurance than
Bardolph. He would not take his band and yours. He liked
not the security.


He said that you have to give him a better guarantee of payment than just saying Bardolph was good for it. He wouldn’t accept Bardolph’s promise or yours; he felt that neither should be trusted.


30Let him be damned like the glutton! Pray God his tongue be
hotter! A whoreson Achitophel, a rascally yea-forsooth
knave, to bear a gentleman in hand and then stand upon
security! The whoreson smoothy-pates do now wear
nothing but high shoes and bunches of keys at their girdles;
35and if a man is through with them in honest taking up, then
they must stand upon security. I had as lief they would put
ratsbane in my mouth as offer to stop it with “security.” I
looked he should have sent me two-and-twenty yards of
satin, as I am a true knight, and he sends me “security.” Well,
40he may sleep in security, for he hath the horn of abundance,
and the lightness of his wife shines through it, and yet cannot
he see though he have his own lantern to light him.


Damn him to hell then, just like Dives in the Bible—the rich glutton who rejected the beggar Lazarus! And may Dommelton burn even hotter! He’s a son-of-a-bitch traitor! A two-faced liar, who smiles and says “Yes sir, that’ll be fine” to my face, and then demands a guarantee of payment! These bastard shopkeepers, with their fashionable short haircuts, and fancy shoes, and their fat key chains on their belts—you make an agreement to put something on credit, and then they throw a “guarantee of payment” at you. I would rather eat rat poison than guarantee my payment. I expected him to send me twenty-two yards of satin, and instead he sends me a “guarantee of payment.” Well, let him guarantee himself a good night’s sleep. After all, his wife’s in somebody else’s bed, so why not? She’s practically shining a spotlight on her adultery, but he’s so clueless he can’t even tell. Where’s Bardolph?


45He’s gone into Smithfield to buy your Worship a horse.


He went to Smithfield to buy you a horse, sir.


I bought him in Paul’s, and he’ll buy me a horse in
Smithfield. An I could get me but a wife in the stews, I were
manned, horsed, and wived.


I bought Bardolph at

St. Paul’s Cathedral

Unemployed men waited at St. Paul’s Cathedral to be hired for short-term jobs. The nearby Smithfield was a livestock market; horses bought there were considered cheap nags.

St. Paul’s Cathedral
, and he’s buying me a horse in Smithfield. Now if he could just find me a wife in a whorehouse, I’d be fully stocked with high-quality servants, horses, and wives.

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