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Henry IV, Part 1 | Scene Summaries

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Timeline of Events

  • Early 15th century

    Scottish and Welsh forces rebel against King Henry IV of England.

    Act 1, Scene 1
  • A few days later

    King Henry publicly declares disappointment in his son Prince Hal.

    Act 1, Scene 1
  • A few days later

    King Henry refuses to ransom Mortimer, offending Hotspur, who joins the rebels.

    Act 1, Scene 3
  • The next day

    Falstaff robs a group of pilgrims, and a disguised Prince Hal robs him in turn.

    Act 2, Scene 2
  • Two days later

    King Henry denounces Prince Hal; Hal promises to reform.

    Act 3, Scene 2
  • Some time later

    King Henry offers to forgive the rebels if they disband.

    Act 4, Scene 3
  • The next day

    Worcester turns down the king's offer and lies to Hotspur about it.

    Act 5, Scene 2
  • A few hours later

    Battle begins, Douglas kills Sir Walter Blunt, who was dressed as the king.

    Act 5, Scene 3
  • A few minutes later

    Prince Hal defeats Hotspur in single combat.

    Act 5, Scene 4
  • A few hours later

    King Henry defeats the rebels and sentences Worcester and Vernon to death.

    Act 5, Scene 5

Scene Summaries Chart

Scene Summary
Act 1, Scene 1 The setting is early 1400s Britain. King Henry IV of England talks with his counselors. Now that a recent civil war is o... Read More
Act 1, Scene 2 Prince Hal and Sir John Falstaff launch into a series of jokes, puns, and insults. Prince Hal teases Falstaff for being ... Read More
Act 1, Scene 3 King Henry takes the stage with a group of nobles: Sir Walter Blunt, Northumberland, Worcester, and Hotspur, who has res... Read More
Act 2, Scene 1 Two carriers (workingmen who move horses and goods from place to place) are working and complaining when Gadshill arrive... Read More
Act 2, Scene 2 Poins tells Prince Hal that, as a joke, he has taken Falstaff's horse from where he left it. Falstaff enters, complainin... Read More
Act 2, Scene 3 Alone onstage, Hotspur reads a letter that greatly upsets him; a nobleman he invited to join the rebellion has turned hi... Read More
Act 2, Scene 4 Prince Hal and Poins enter a tavern. They tease Francis, who works in the tavern, by calling him in opposite directions ... Read More
Act 3, Scene 1 The rebel leaders (Hotspur, Worcester, Mortimer, and Glendower) meet. They talk about how much the king's supporters, es... Read More
Act 3, Scene 2 Prince Hal goes to see his father. King Henry lectures his son, complaining that he isn't acting like a prince or like H... Read More
Act 3, Scene 3 Back in the tavern, Falstaff complains about how thin he's grown and asks the hostess if she knows who stole from him. H... Read More
Act 4, Scene 1 Hotspur, Worcester, and Douglas are planning the rebellion when a messenger shows up with bad news. Hotspur's father, No... Read More
Act 4, Scene 2 Falstaff and Bardolph are marching to war. Falstaff sends Bardolph for something to drink and explains how he recruited ... Read More
Act 4, Scene 3 Hotspur, Worcester, Douglas, and Vernon are on the battlefield, arguing about when they should attack. Hotspur and Dougl... Read More
Act 4, Scene 4 The Archbishop of York gives letters to Sir Michael to deliver, and they discuss the battle that will happen the next da... Read More
Act 5, Scene 1 Worcester and Vernon join King Henry, Prince Hal, Lord John, Sir Walter Blunt, and Falstaff on the battlefield. The king... Read More
Act 5, Scene 2 Worcester talks Vernon into not telling Hotspur about the king's offer of forgiveness, reasoning that the king might for... Read More
Act 5, Scene 3 The battle is underway, and it is chaotic. The king crosses the stage and leaves again. A moment later, Sir Walter Blunt... Read More
Act 5, Scene 4 King Henry, Prince Hal, Lord John, and Westmoreland take the stage with the sounds of the battle all around them. The ki... Read More
Act 5, Scene 5 The trumpets sound, signaling the approach of King Henry, Prince Hal, Lord John, and Westmoreland, along with their sold... Read More
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