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ORL. What a wretched and peevish fellow is this King of England, to mope with his fat-brained followers so far out of his knowledge !
Con. If the English had any apprehension, they would run away:
Orl. That they lack; for if their heads had any intellectual armour, they could never wear such heavy head-pieces.
Ram. That island of England breeds very valiant creatures; their mastiffs are of unmatchable courage.
ORL. Foolish curs, that run winking into the mouth of a Russian bear and have their heads crushed like rotten apples! You may as well say, that's a valiant flea that dare eat his breakfast on the lip of a lion.
Con. Just, just; and the men do sympathize with the mastiffs in robustious and rough coming on, leaving their wits with their wives: and then give them great meals of beef, and iron and steel, they will eat like wolves, and fight like devils.
ORL. Ay, but these English are shrewdly out of beef.
Con. Then shall we find to-morrow they have only stomachs to eat and none to fight. Now is it time to arm: come, shall we about it?
ORL. It is now two o'clock: but, let me see, by ten We shall have each a hundred Englishmen. [Exeunt.
132 apprehension] sense, intelligence. 144 robustious) boisterous. Shakespeare only uses the word again in
Hamlet, III, ii, 9.
Enter Chorus CHORUS
OW ENTERTAIN CON
jecture of a time
foul womb of night
other's watch: Fire answers fire, and through their paly flames Each battle sees the other's umber'd face; Steed threatens steed, in high and boastful neighs 10 2 poring darl] darkness in which the eye looks intently or gropes. 9umber'd) discoloured by the light of the flickering fires.
Piercing the night's dull ear; and from the tents
12 accomplishing) equipping. 17 secure in soul] confident at heart. 18-19 The confident . . . dice] This detail is borrowed direct from
Holinshed who writes that “the (French) souldiers the night before had plaid the Englishmen at dice.” In their game at dice the Frenchmen had likened their despised adversaries to the stake for
which they were playing. 25-26 their gesture sad . . . coats] the sadness of their gesture, which
communicates itself to their lank-lean cheeks and to their ragged coats.
For forth he goes and visits all his host,
39 over-bears attaint) conquers or represses the taint (of weariness). 46 as may unworthiness define] as far as their unworthy natures may
SCENE I-THE ENGLISH CAMP AT AGINCOURT
Enter KING HENRY, BEDFORD, and GLOUCESTER
10 Thus may we gather honey from the weed, And make a moral of the devil himself.
ERP. Not so, my liege: this lodging likes me better,
pains Upon example; so the spirit is eased: 3 brother Bedford] The Duke of Bedford was not present at the battle of
Agincourt. 10 dress us] address, prepare ourselves. Cf. III, iii, 58, supra.