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Henry V

Henry V


by William Shakespeare

Henry V Memory and the Past Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (Act.Scene.Line)

Quote #7

I once writ
a sonnet in his praise and began thus: 'Wonder of
I have heard a sonnet begin so to one's
Then did they imitate that which I composed
to my courser, for my horse is my mistress.
Your mistress bears well. (3.7.40-47)

Bourbon seems like a throwback to Hotspur's character in Henry IV Part 1, don't you think? Recall that Hotspur was the epitome of honor and chivalry (a word that comes from the French "cheval," which means horse). Here, Bourbon's over-the-top bragging about his beloved horse seems like a comedic parody of Hotspur's love of warfare and chivalry.

Quote #8

O God of battles, steel my soldiers’ hearts.
Possess them not with fear. Take from them now
The sense of reck’ning or th’ opposèd numbers
Pluck their hearts from them. Not today, O Lord,
O, not today, think not upon the fault
My father made in compassing the crown.
I Richard’s body have interrèd new
And on it have bestowed more contrite tears
Than from it issued forcèd drops of blood.
Five hundred poor I have in yearly pay
Who twice a day their withered hands hold up
Toward heaven to pardon blood. And I have built
Two chantries where the sad and solemn priests
Sing still for Richard’s soul. More will I do—
Though all that I can do is nothing worth,
Since that my penitence comes after all,
Imploring pardon. (4.1.300-316)

Henry V may not admit it in public, but he's really anxious about the way his father got his hands on the English throne. Here, he begs God to forgive him for his dad's crimes against Richard II and hopes that he won't be punished for Henry IV's sins.

Quote #9

It is not well done, mark you now, to take
the tales out of my mouth, ere it is made and
finished. I speak but in the figures and comparisons
of it. As Alexander killed his friend Cleitus, being in
his ales and his cups, so also Harry Monmouth,
being in his right wits and his good judgments,
turned away the fat knight with the great-belly
doublet; he was full of jests and gipes and knaveries
and mocks—I have forgot his name.
Sir John Falstaff. (4.7.43-52)

Even though Shakespeare has killed off Falstaff, the guy never quite seems to go away (even though people are beginning to forget his name). Why do you think Shakespeare dredges up a memory of Falstaff at this particular moment in the play?

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