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Now, Hal, what time of day is it, lad?

Now, Hal, what time of day is it, lad?
Prince Hal
Thou art so fat-witted with drinking of old
sack, and unbuttoning thee after supper, and
sleeping upon benches after noon, that thou hast
forgotten to demand that truly which thou wouldst
truly know. What a devil hast thou to do with
the time of the day? Unless hours were cups of
sack, and minutes capons, and clocks the tongues
of bawds, and dials the signs of leaping-houses,
and the blessed sun himself a fair hot wench in
flame-colored taffeta, I see no reason why thou
shouldst be so superfluous to demand the time
of the day.
Indeed, you come near me now, Hal, for we
that take purses go by the moon and the seven
stars, and not by Phoebus, he, that wand'ring
knight so fair. And I prithee, sweet wag, when thou
art king, as God save thy Grace—Majesty, I should
say, for grace thou wilt have none—
Prince Hal
What, none?
No, by my troth, not so much as will serve to
be prologue to an egg and butter.
Prince Hal
Well, how then? Come, roundly, roundly.
Marry then, sweet wag, when thou art king,
let not us that are squires of the night's body be
called thieves of the day's beauty. Let us be Diana's
foresters, gentlemen of the shade, minions of the
moon, and let men say we be men of good government,
being governed, as the sea is, by our noble
and chaste mistress the moon, under whose countenance
we steal.
Prince Hal
Thou sayest well, and it holds well too, for the
fortune of us that are the moon's men doth ebb and
flow like the sea, being governed, as the sea is, by
the moon. As for proof now: a purse of gold most
resolutely snatched on Monday night and most
dissolutely spent on Tuesday morning, got with
swearing —Lay by and spent with crying —Bring
in; now in as low an ebb as the foot of the ladder,
and by and by in as high a flow as the ridge of the
By the Lord, thou sayst true, lad.

Act 1
Scene 2
Line 1

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