William Shakespeare's The Life of King Henry the Fifth in the complete original text.
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The Life of King Henry the Fifth

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Act V. Scene I.

Scene I.—France. An English Court of


Gow. Nay, that's right; but why wear you
your leek to-day? Saint Davy's day is past.
Flu. There is occasions and causes why and
wherefore in all things: I will tell you, asse my
friend,. Captain Gower. The rascally, scald,
beggarly, lousy, pragging knave. Pistol,—which
you and yourself and all the 'orld know to be no
petter than a fellow,—look you now, of no merits,
he is come to me and prings me pread and salt
yesterday, look you, and pid me eat my leek. It
was in a place where I could not preed no con-
tention with him; but I will be so pold as to
wear it in my cap till I see him once again, and
then I will tell him a little piece of my desires.
Gow. Why, here he comes, swelling like a

Flu. 'Tis no matter for his swellings nor his
turkey-cocks. God pless you, Aunchient Pistol!
you scurvy, lousy knave, God pless you!
Pist. Ha! art thou bedlam? dost thou thirst,
base Troyan,
To have me fold up Parca's fatal web?
Hence! I am qualmish at the smell of leek.
Flu. I peseech you heartily, scurvy lousy
knave, at my desires and my requests and my
petitions to eat, look you, this leek; pecause,
look you, you do not love it, nor your affections
and your appetites and your digestions does not
agree with it, I would desire you to eat it.
Pist. Not for Cadwallader and all his goats.
Flu. [Strikes him.] There is one goat for you.
Will you be so good, scald knave, as eat it?
Pist. Base Troyan, thou shalt die.
Flu. You say very true, scald knave, when
God's will is. I will desire you to live in the
mean time and eat your victuals; come, there
is sauce for it. [Strikes him again.] You called
me yesterday mountain-squire, but I will make
you to-day a squire of low degree. I pray you, fall
to: if you can mock a leek you can eat a leek.
Gow. Enough, captain: you have astonished
Flu. I say, I will make him eat some part of
my leek, or I will peat his pate four days. Bite,
I pray you; it is good for your green wound and
your ploody coxcomb.
Pist. Must I bite?
Flu. Yes, certainly, and out of doubt and out
of question too and ambiguities.
Pist. By this leek, I will most horribly revenge.
I eat and eat, I swear—
Flu. Eat, I pray you: will you have some
more sauce to your leek? there is not enough
leek to swear by.
Pist. Quiet the cudgel: thou dost see I eat.
Flu. Much good do you, scald knave, heartily.
Nay, pray you, throw none away; the skin is
good for your broken coxcomb. When you take
occasions to see leeks hereafter, I pray you, mock
at 'em; that is all.
Pist. Good.
Flu. Ay, leeks is good. Hold you, there is a
groat to heal your pate.
Pist. Me a groat!
Flu. Yes, verily and in truth, you shall take
it; or I have another leek in my pocket, which
you shall eat.
Pist. I take thy groat in earnest of revenge.
Flu. If I owe you anything I will pay you in
cudgels: you shall be a woodmonger, and buy
nothing of me but cudgels. God be wi' you, and
keep you, and heal your pate. [Exit.
Pist. All hell shall stir for this.
Gow. Go, go; you are a counterfeit cowardly
knave. Will you mock at an ancient tradition,
begun upon an honourable respect, and worn as
a memorable trophy of predeceased valour, and
dare not avouch in your deeds any of your words?
I have seen you gleeking and galling at this
gentleman twice or thrice. You thought, be-
cause he could not speak English in the native
garb, he could not therefore handle an English
cudgel: you find it otherwise; and henceforth
let a Welsh correction teach you a good English
condition. Fare ye well. [Exit.
Pist. Doth Fortune play the huswife with me
News have I that my Nell is dead i' the spital
Of malady of France:
And there my rendezvous is quite cut off.
Old I do wax, and from my weary limbs
Honour is cudgelled. Well, bawd I'll turn,
And something lean to cutpurse of quick hand.
To England will I steal, and there I'll steal:
And patches will I get unto these cudgell'd scars,
And swear I got them in the Gallia wars. [Exit.
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