No Fear Act 3 Scene 2
No Fear Act 3 Scene 2 Page 2

Original Text

Modern Text

PISTOL

Be merciful, great duke, to men of mold. Abate thy rage, abate thy manly rage, abate thy rage, great duke. Good bawcock, 'bate thy rage. Use lenity, sweet chuck.

PISTOL

Great Duke, be merciful to mortal men. Calm your rage, your manly rage! Calm your rage, great Duke! Dear man, calm your rage. Be lenient, dearest!

NYM

These be good humors. Your Honor wins bad humors.

NYM

This is healthy talk. Your Honor’s is unhealthy talk.
Exeunt all but BOY
Everyone but the BOY exits.

BOY

As young as I am, I have observed these three swashers. I am boy to them all three, but all they three, though they would serve me, could not be man to me. For indeed three such antics do not amount to a man: for Bardolph, he is white-livered and red-faced, by the means whereof he faces it out but fights not; for Pistol, he hath a killing tongue and a quiet sword, by the means whereof he breaks words and keeps whole weapons; for Nym, he hath heard that men of few words are the best men, and therefore he scorns to say his prayers, lest he should be thought a coward, but his few bad words are matched with as few good deeds, for he never broke any man’s head but his own, and that was against a post when he was drunk. They will steal anything and call it purchase. Bardolph stole a lute case, bore it twelve leagues, and sold it for three halfpence. Nym and Bardolph are sworn brothers in filching, and in Calais they stole a fire shovel. I knew by that piece of service the men would carry coals. They would have me as familiar with men’s pockets as their gloves or their handkerchers, which makes much against my manhood, if I should take from another’s pocket to put into mine, for it is plain pocketing up of wrongs. I must leave them and seek some better service. Their villainy goes against my weak stomach, and therefore I must cast it up.

BOY

Young though I am, I’ve been observing these three blowhards closely. I am “man”—which is to say, servant—to all three of them. Yet not one among them, if all three were to wait on me, could be my “man,” because three such fakes don’t amount to a man. Take Bardolph: he is cowardly and blustery. He acts tough, but he doesn’t fight. Pistol, meanwhile, has a lethal tongue but an inert sword. He destroys words but keeps his weapon in one piece. As for Nym, he’s heard men of valor are men of few words, so he refuses to pray lest he should be thought a coward. But he has as few good deeds as he has bad words—for he never cracked anyone’s head but his own, and that was against a post when he was drunk. They will steal anything and call it spoils. Bardolph stole a lute case, carried it for thirty-six miles, and sold it for a penny and a half. Nym and Bardolph are sworn brothers in crime, and in Calais they stole a fire shovel: I could see from that that they had no pride. They would like me to be as familiar with men’s pockets as their gloves and handkerchiefs, which goes against my manhood, because to take something from another’s pocket and put it into my own is plain stealing. I must leave them and seek some better employment. Their villainy nauseates me, and I must therefore vomit it up.
Exit
He exits.