God Will I Pray Thee Wish Not One Man More?

St Crispin’s Day Speech

Henry V’s St Crispin’s Day speech is from William Shakespeare’s play Henry V. It was famously portrayed by Laurence Olivier to lift British spirits during WWII, and it popularized the phrase “band of brothers,” which has since been used in other works.

The speech

King Charles I: O that we had only one thousand of those men in England who do not work to-day! Who is he who wishes so? My cousin, Westmorland? No, my fair cousin. If we are marked to die, we are enough to do our country loss. This day is called the feast of Crispian. He who outlives this day, and returns safely home, Will stand on tip-toe when this day is nam’d.

Use and quotation

Horatio Nelson’s speech inspired Charles Dickens’ Household Words during the Napoleonic Wars, Laurence Olivier’s adaptation inspired Winston Churchill’s famous Never Have I Ever (1944), and Duff Cooper’s autobiography Old Men Forget (1953) is based on the speech.

Film, television, music and literature

The phrase “band of brothers” appears in the 1789 song “Hail, Columbia,” written for George Washington’s inauguration, and has also appeared in Doctor Who and TV series such as Last Man Standing.


Vienne-Guerrin, Nathalie (2015). Shakespeare on screen: A Re-evaluation of 100 Years of Adaptations. Fradley, Martin (1 March 2018). Golden, Christopher (3 October 2017). Buffy the Vampire Slayer 20 Years of Slaying.


The St Crispin’s Day Speech by Shakespeare is one of the most well-known speeches in the English language.

Why did Henry tell his troops to wish not one man more?

Henry goes on to say that he does not want to fight alongside any man who does not want to fight with the English, and that anyone who wants to leave can and will be given money to return home.

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What is the most famous line in the St Crispin Day speech?

This day shall gentle his condition: Here’s the most famous line from Henry’s entire speech: ‘We few, we happy few, we band of brothers.’

What did Henry V really say at Agincourt?

If we are marked to sprain our wrists today, if we march home with sore and bloodied knees, ‘Pon our return the honour shall be more,’ said King Henry as his troops entered the fray on Crispin’s Day.

What’s he that wishes so my cousin Westmorland no My Fair Cousin if we are Mark D to die we are enough to do our country loss and if to live the fewer men the greater share of honour God’s will I pray?

My cousin Westmorland? No, my dear cousin, we are enough for our country to lose if we are marked down to die, and if marked down to live, the fewer the men, the greater the share of honor; for the love of God, don’t wish for one more man; by Jove, I’m not interested in gold, and I don’t care who eats at my expense.

Who kills Falstaff?

Shakespeare u201cclearly makes Henry responsible for the deaths of two of them, Falstaff and Bardolph u2013 and does so as part of a dramatic sequence which shows Henry becoming increasingly burdened and isolated,u201d according to Gary Taylor (1982:46).

Who first said Band of Brothers?

One of the well-known lines from Shakespeare’s Henry V’s rousing St. Crispin’s Day Speech is “We few, we happy few, we band of brothers.” Henry was exhorting his men to greater valour and toward a famous victory against the French at the Battle of Agincourt.

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What are the famous words by Henry?

Below is a list of the best and most well-known Henry V quotes, organized by speaker, act, and scene.

  • U201cCan this cockpit hold.
  • U201cSelf-love, my liege, is not so vile a sin as self-neglecting.u201d
  • U201cEven at the turning of the tide.u201d
  • U201cAs cold as any stone.u201d

Is that not the morning which breaks yonder?

Isn’t that the morning breaking over there? Brother John Bates, isn’t that the dawn breaking over there? I believe it is, but we have no great reason to desire the approach of day.

Where is the St Crispin’s Day speech?

Folger Shakespeare Library, “The St. Crispin’s Day Speech.”

How many English died at Agincourt?

During the Battle of Agincourt, nearly 6,000 Frenchmen died, while just over 400 Englishmen died; Henry had won one of the greatest military victories in history against odds of more than three to one.

What happens to Falstaff in Henry V?

Instead of dying mysteriously, as in Shakespeare’s Henry V, Falstaff dies with dignity and bravery in The King’s Battle of Agincourt, where King Henry discovers his friend’s body among fallen soldiers in the mud and weeps over him.

Did Henry V actually give a speech at Agincourt?

Agincourt is one of the most evocative names in English military history, and Shakespeare’s version of King Henry V’s speech before the battle is not only great theater, but also a scene that was used to boost British morale as recently as the Second World War.

What does Henry say to the men that don’t have the stomach to fight?

Let him go; his passport will be prepared, and crowns for the convoy will be placed in his purse; we would not die in his company.

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What’s he that wishes so speech?

King Henry V: Who is he who wishes so? To do our country harm; and if to live, the fewer men, the greater the share of honor; I pray thee, do not wish one more man.

Will stand a tip toe when this day is named?

u201cThis day is called the feast of Crispian,u201d says the speaker. u201cHe who outlives this day, and returns safely home, will stand on tip-toe when the day is named, and rouse him at the name of Crispian.u201d

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