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appearance and brave in reality; a knave without malice, a liar without deceit; and a knight, a gentleman, and a soldier, without either dignity, decency, or honour"-appeals to our minds and hearts in this way that we cannot receive any impression but a sympathetic one. Vice is there, but “vice, divested of disgust and terror, is . . . in its own nature ridiculous." So instead of condemning the old rogue for his villainy, we relish hugely his exuberant humour and resourceful wit. Truly he says of himself: “ The brain of this foolishcompounded clay, man, is not able to invent any thing that tends to laughter, more than I invent or is invented on me: I am not only witty in myself, but the cause that wit is in other men.” 1
DURATION OF ACTION
According to Mr. P. A. Daniel, who published his time analysis of i Henry IV. in the Transactions of the New Shake-, speare Society, 1877-79, the play covers ten “historic” days with three extra Falstaffian days, and intervals. The total dramatic time is three months at most :Day 1. Act I. i. London. News of the battle of Holme
don, etc. Interval : a week (?). Hotspur
comes to Court.
The robbery at Gadshill planned.]
terval : some three or four weeks.
Act II. iii. Hotspur resolves to join the con
federates at Bangor. Interval : a week. Hot
spur and Worcester reach Bangor. [Days 2a, 3a. Act 11. i. ii. iv. ; Act II. iv.; (Act III. ii.).]
. Day 4
Act III. i. Bangor. Interval : about a fort
night. Day 5. Act III. ii. Prince Hal and his father. Day 5
is also a continuation of Day 3a. Interval :
a day. Day 6. Act III. iii. Prince Hal informs Falstaff of his
appointment to a charge of foot for the wars.
Interval: a week.
Act IV. i. Rebel camp near Shrewsbury. In-
12 Henry IV. 1. ii. 7-12.
Act. iv. ii. Near Coventry.
Act iv. iii. The rebel camp. Act iv. iv. York.
The historic period covered begins with the defeat of Mortimer by Glendower, June 22, 1402, and ends with the Battle of Shrewsbury, July 21, 1403.
PASSAGES FROM HOLINSHED'S CHRONICLES ON WHICH SHAKE
SPEARE BASED THE HISTORICAL FRAMEWORK OF THE
(I) The Percys' Rebellion.
"Owen Glendouer, according to his accustomed manner, robbing and spoiling within the English borders, caused all the forces of the shire of Hereford to assemble togither against them, vnder the conduct of Edmund Mortimer earle of March. But coming to trie the matter by battell, whether by treason or otherwise, so it fortuned, that the English power was discomfited, the earle taken prisoner, and aboue a thousand of his people slaine in the place. The shamefull villanie vsed by the Welsh women towards the dead carcasses, was such, as honest eares would be ashamed to heare, and continent toongs to speake thereof. The dead bodies might not be buried, without great summes of monie giuen for libertie to conueie them awaie.
“The king was not hastie to purchase the deliuerance of the earle March, bicause his title to the crowne was well inough knowen, and therefore suffered him to remaine in miserable prison, wishing both the said earle, and all other of his linage out of this life, with God and his saincts in heauen, so they had beene out of the waie, for then all had beene well inough as he thought. . . . About mid of August, the king to chastise the presumptuous attempts of the Welshmen, went with a great power of men into Wales, to pursue the capteine of the Welsh rebell Owen Glendouer, but in effect he lost his labor; for Owen conueied himselfe out of the waie, into his knowen lurking places, and (as was thought) through art magike, he caused such foule weather of winds, tempest, rainé, snow, and haile to be raised, for the annoiance of the kings armie, that the like had not beene heard of; such sort, that the king was constreined to returne home, hauing caused his people yet to spoile and burne first a great
part of the countrie. . . . The Scots vnder the leding of Patrike Hepborne, of the Hales the yoonger, entring into England, was ouerthrowen at Nesbit, in the marches, as in the Scotish chronicle ye may find more at large. This battell was fought the two and twentith of Iune, in this yeare of our
"Archembald earle Dowglas sore displeased in his mind for this ouerthrow, procured a commission to inuade England, and that to his cost, as ye may likewise read in the Scotish histories. For at a place called Homildon, they were so fiercelie assailed by the Englishmen, vnder the leading of the lord Persie, surnamed Henrie Hotspur, and George earle of March, that with violence of the English shot they were quite vanquished and put to flight, on the Rood daie in haruest, with a great slaughter made by the Englishmen. We know that the Scotish writers note this battell to haue chanced in the yeare 1403.
But we following Tho. Walsingham in this place, and other English writers, for the accompt of times, haue thought good to place it in this yeare 1402, as in the same writers we find it. There were slaine of men of estimation, sir Iohn Swinton, sir Adam Gordon, sir Iohn Leuiston, sir Alexander Ramsie of Dalehousie, and three and twentie knights, besides ten thousand of the commons: and of prisoners among other were these, Mordacke earle of Fife, son to the gouernour Archembald earle Dowglas, which in the fight lost one of his eies, Thomas erle of Murrey, Robert earle of Angus, and (as some writers haue) the earles of Atholl & Menteith, with fiue hundred other of meaner degrees.
“... Edmund Mortimer earle of March,prisoner with Owen Glendouer, whether for irkesomnesse of cruell captiuitie, or feare of death, or for what other cause, it is vncerteine, agreed to take part with Owen, against the king of England, and tooke to wife the daughter of the said Owen.
“Strange wonders happened (as men reported) at the natiuitie of this man, for the same night he was borne, all his fathers horsses in the stable were found to stand in bloud up to the bellies. . . .
“Henrie earle of Northumberland, with his brother Thomas earle of Worcester, and his sonne the lord Henrie Persie, surnamed Hotspur, which were to king Henrie in the beginning of his reigne, both faithfull freends, and earnest aiders, began now to enuie his wealth and felicitie; and especiallie they were greeved, bicause the king demanded of the earle and his sonne such Scotish prisoners as were taken at Homeldon and Nesbit: for of all the captiues which were taken in the conflicts foughten in those two places, there was deliuered to the kings possession onelie Mordake earle of Fife, the duke of Albanies sonne, though' the king did diuers and sundrie times require deliuerance of the residue, and that with great threatnings: wherewith the Persies being sore offended, for that they claimed them as their owne proper prisoners, and their peculiar preies, by the counsell of the lord Thomas Persie earle of Worcester, whose studie was euer (as some write) to procure malice, and set things in a broile, came to the king vnto Windsore (vpon a purpose to propue him) and there required of him, that either by ransome or otherwise, he would cause to be deliuered out of prison Edmund Mortimer earle of March, their cousine germane, whome (as they reported) Owen Glendouer kept in filthie prison, shakled with irons, onelie for that he tooke his part, and was to him faithfull and true.
“ The king began not a little to muse at this request, and not without cause: for in deed it touched him somewhat neere, sith this Edmund was sonne to Roger earle of March, sonne to the ladie Philip, daughter of Lionell duke of Clarence, the third sonne of king Edward the third ; which Edmund at king Richards going into Ireland, was proclaimed heire apparant to the crowne and realme, whose aunt called Elianor, the lord Henrie Persie had married ; and therefore king Henrie could not well heare, that anie man should be earnest about the aduancement of that linage. The king when he had studied on the matter, made answer, that the earle of March was not taken prisoner for his cause, nor in his seruice, but willinglie suffered himselfe to be taken, bicause he would not withstand the attempts of Owen Glendouer, and his complices, and therefore he would neither ransome him, nor releeue him.
“ The Persies with this answer and fraudulent excuse were not a little fumed, insomuch that Henrie Hotspur said openlie: Behold, the heire of the relme is robbed of his right, and yet the robber with his owne will not redeeme him. So in this furie the Persies departed, minding nothing more than to depose king Henrie from the high type of his roialtie, and to place in his seat their cousine Edmund earle of March, whom they did not onlie deliuer out of captiuitie, but also (to the high displeasure of king Henrie) entered in league with the foresaid Owen Glendouer. Heerewith, they by their
deputies in the house of the archdeacon of Bangor, diuided the realme amongst them, causing a tripartite indenture to be made and sealed with their seales, by the couenants whereof, all England from Seuerne and Trent, south and eastward, was assigned to the earle of March : all Wales, & the lands beyond Seuerne westward, were appointed to Owen Glendouer: and all the remnant from Trent northward, to the lord Persie.
“This was doone (as some haue said) through a foolish credit giuen to a vaine prophesie, as though king Henrie was the moldwarpe, cursed of Gods owne mouth, and they three were the dragon, the lion, and the woolfe, which should diuide this realme betweene them. Such is the deuiation (saith Hall) and not diuination of those blind and fantasticall dreames of the Welsh prophesiers. King Henrie not knowing of this new confederacie, and nothing lesse minding than that which after happened, gathered a great armie to go againe into Wales, whereof the earle of Northumberland and his sonne were aduertised by the earle of Worcester, and with all diligence raised all the power they could make, and sent to the Scots which before were taken prisoners at Homeldon, for aid of men, promising to the earle of Dowglas the towne of Berwike, and a part of Northumberland, and to other Scotish lords, great lordships and seigniories, if they obteined the upper hand. The Scots in hope of gaine, and desirous to be feuenged of their old greefes, came to the earle with a great companie well appointed.
“The Persies to make their part seeme good, deuised certeine articles, by the aduise of Richard Scroope, archbishop of Yorke, brother to the lord Scroope, whome king Henrie had caused to be beheaded at Bristow. These articles being shewed to diuerse noblemen, and other states of the realme, mooued them to fauour their purpose, in so much that manie of them did not onelie promise to the Persies aid and succour by words, but also by their writings and seales confirmed the
Howbeit when the matter came to triall, the most part of the confederates abandoned them, and at the daie of the conflict left them alone. Thus after that the conspirators had discouered themselues, the lord Henrie Persie desirous to proceed in the enterprise, vpon trust to be assisted by Owen Glendouer, the earle of March, & other, assembled an armie of men of armes and archers foorth of Cheshire and Wales. Incontinentlie his vncle Thomas Persie earle of Worcester, that had