William Shakespeare: The Life of King Henry V

6. SCENE VI. The English camp in Picardy.

[Enter Gower and Fluellen, meeting.]

How now, Captain Fluellen! come you from the bridge?

I assure you, there is very excellent services committed at the

Is the Duke of Exeter safe?

The Duke of Exeter is as magnanimous as Agamemnon; and a
man that I love and honour with my soul, and my heart, and my
duty, and my live, and my living, and my uttermost power. He
is not--God be praised and blessed!--any hurt in the world; but
keeps the bridge most valiantly, with excellent discipline. There
is an aunchient lieutenant there at the pridge, I think in my
very conscience he is as valiant a man as Mark Antony; and he is
a man of no estimation in the world, but I did see him do as
gallant service.

What do you call him?

He is call'd Aunchient Pistol.

I know him not.

[Enter Pistol.]

Here is the man.

Captain, I thee beseech to do me favours.
The Duke of Exeter doth love thee well.

Ay, I praise God; and I have merited some love at his hands.

Bardolph, a soldier, firm and sound of heart,
And of buxom valour, hath by cruel fate
And giddy Fortune's furious fickle wheel,
That goddess blind,
That stands upon the rolling restless stone--

By your patience, Aunchient Pistol. Fortune is painted
blind, with a muffler afore his eyes, to signify to you that
Fortune is blind; and she is painted also with a wheel, to
signify to you, which is the moral of it, that she is turning,
and inconstant, and mutability, and variation; and her foot,
look you, is fixed upon a spherical stone, which rolls, and
rolls, and rolls. In good truth, the poet makes a most excellent
description of it. Fortune is an excellent moral.

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