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Home » Quotes » Henry IV Pt 1 » Methinks my moiety, north from Burton here

Methinks my moiety, north from Burton here

Hotspur, looking at the map
Methinks my moiety, north from Burton here,
In quantity equals not one of yours.
See how this river comes me cranking in
And cuts me from the best of all my land
A huge half-moon, a monstrous cantle  out.
I’ll have the current in this place dammed up,
And here the smug and silver Trent shall run
In a new channel, fair and evenly.
It shall not wind with such a deep indent
To rob me of so rich a bottom here.

I had rather be a kitten and cry “mew”
Than one of these same meter balladmongers.

Not wind? It shall, it must. You see it doth.
Mortimer, to Hotspur
Yea, but mark how he bears his course, and runs me up
With like advantage on the other side,
Gelding the opposèd continent as much
As on the other side it takes from you.
Yea, but a little charge will trench him here
And on this north side win this cape of land,
And then he runs straight and even.
I’ll have it so. A little charge will do it.
I’ll not have it altered.
Will not you?
No, nor you shall not.
Who shall say me nay?
Why, that will I.
Let me not understand you, then; speak it in Welsh.
I can speak English, lord, as well as you,
For I was trained up in the English court,
Where being but young I framèd to the harp
Many an English ditty lovely well
And gave the tongue a helpful ornament—
A virtue that was never seen in you.
Marry, and I am glad of it with all my heart.
I had rather be a kitten and cry “mew”
Than one of these same meter balladmongers.
I had rather hear a brazen can’stick turned,
Or a dry wheel grate on the axletree,
And that would set my teeth nothing an edge,
Nothing so much as mincing poetry.
’Tis like the forced gait of a shuffling nag.
Come, you shall have Trent turned.
I do not care. I’ll give thrice so much land
To any well-deserving friend;
But in the way of bargain, mark you me,
I’ll cavil on the ninth part of a hair.

Act 3
Scene 1
Line 100

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