How we cite our quotes:
May I with right and conscience make this claim?
The sin upon my head, dread sovereign! (1.2.5)
Good question, Henry. Can you make a claim to the French throne with "right and conscience"? We're not so sure.
For me, the gold of France did not seduce;
Although I did admit it as a motive
The sooner to effect what I intended:
But God be thanked for prevention;
Which I in sufferance heartily will rejoice,
Beseeching God and you to pardon me. (2.2.5)
When it's discovered that the French have bribed Cambridge, Scrope, and Grey to assassinate King Henry before he can invade France, we're led to believe that plot is treacherous. Here, though, Cambridge reveals that he took money from France only because he thought it would help him achieve his end goal. [Cambridge supports Edmund Mortimer, who seems to have a better claim to the English throne than Henry V. Remember, Henry V only inherited the throne after his father Henry IV usurped the crown from Richard II (Richard II, 4.1). Also, Mortimer is the great-grandson of Edward III's third son, while Henry, on the other hand, is the grandson of Edward III's fourth son.]
When it comes down to it, is the traitors' plot really that scandalous? Or, is it just par for the course in this series of history plays? If you ask us, Cambridge's plot to bump Henry V off the throne isn't so different from what Henry IV did to Richard II, which is this: He took money from France (the King of Brittany to be specific) to help his campaign to overthrow King Richard (Richard II, 2.1).
There's for thy labour, Montjoy.
Go bid thy master well advise himself:
If we may pass, we will; if we be hinder'd,
We shall your tawny ground with your red blood
Discolour: and so Montjoy, fare you well.
The sum of all our answer is but this:
We would not seek a battle, as we are;
Nor, as we are, we say we will not shun it:
So tell your master. (3.6.7)
Okay. Henry's claim to the French throne may be dubious, but he often comes off as an awesome king. Here, he has the confidence to tip the enemy messenger after the guy delivers a threatening message from France.