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// The St Crispin's Day Speech

shakespear

Every year I put together this shoe party someone always brings up the The St. Crispin's Day Speech. I think just as much as shoes are telling of a person's personality so is their reaction to the concept of a St. Crispin's Day celebration.

There are two types of people: the first have no clue who St. Crispin is and I spend most of my time talking about the Saints themselves and how they relate to shoes. The second group of people think I am referring to Shakespeare and they starting talking about the speech. Strangely enough, they don't really know about St. Crispin either, so here I have to go over the whole St. Crispin thing again.

Well since I already discussed the whole shoe thing, I thought I would excerpt Wikipedia's entry on the speech and round out our whole understanding.

St. Crispin and Crispinian are perhaps best known for lending his name to the famous speech given by the eponymous king in Shakespeare's Henry V before the Battle of Agincourt (which occurred 25 October 1415, though the speech was not written until 1599). In the speech, Crispinian's name is spelled Crispian, perhaps reflecting London pronunciation in Shakespeare's time.

The full text of the speech is:

KING. This day is called the feast of Crispian:
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when the day is named,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say "To-morrow is Saint Crispian":
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars.
And say "These wounds I had on Crispin's day."
Old men forget: yet all shall be forgot,
But he'll remember with advantages
What feats he did that day: then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words
Harry the king, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester,
Be in their flowing cups freshly remember'd.
This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remember'd;
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition:
And gentlemen in England now a-bed
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day. (IV, iii)

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