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SCENE V.-The Tower Walls.
Enter GLOSTER, and BUCKINGHAM, in rusty Armor, marvellous ill-favor'd.
Glo. Come, cousin, canst thou quake, and change thy color?
Murder thy breath in middle of a word,-
And then again begin, and stop again,
As if thou wert distraught, and mad with terror?
Buck. Tut, I can counterfeit the deep tragedian;
Speak, and look back, and pry on every side,
Tremble and start at wagging of a straw,
Intending' deep suspicion: ghastly looks
Are at my service, like enforced smiles;
And both are ready in their offices,
At any time, to grace my stratagems.
But what, is Catesby gone?
Glo. He is; and, see, he brings the mayor along.
Enter the Lord Mayor and CATESBY. Buck. Let me alone to entertain him.-Lord
Enter LOVEL and RATCLIFF, with HASTINGS's Head.
Glo. Be patient, they are friends; Ratcliff, and Lovel.
Lov. Here is the head of that ignoble traitor, The dangerous and unsuspected Hastings.
Glo. So dear I lov'd the man, that I must weep. I took him for the plainest harmless't creature, That breath'd upon the earth a Christian; Made him my book, wherein my soul recorded The history of all her secret thoughts:
So smooth he daub'd his vice with show of virtue,
That, his apparent open guilt omitted.-
I mean, his conversation with Shore's wife,-
He liv'd from all attainder of suspect.
Buck. Well, well, he was the covert'st shelter'd traitor
That ever liv'd.-Look you, my lord mayor,
Would you imagine, or almost believe,
(Were't not, that by great preservation
We live to tell it you,) the subtle traitor
This day had plotted in the council-house
To murder me, and my good lord of Gloster?
May. What! had he so!
Glo. What! think you we are Turks, or infidels?
Or that we would, against the form of law,
Proceed thus rashly in the villain's death;
But that the extreme peril of the case,
The peace of England, and our persons' safety,
Enforced us to this execution?
May. Now, fair befall you! he deserv'd his death; And your good graces both have well proceeded, To warn false traitors from the like attempts. I never look'd for better at his hands, After he once fell in with mistress Shore.
Buck. Yet had we not determin'd he should die, Until your lordship came to see his end; Which now the loving haste of these our friends, Somewhat against our meaning, hath prevented: Because, my lord, we would have had you heard The traitor speak, and timorously confess The manner and the purpose of his treasons; That you might well have signified the same Unto the citizens, who, haply, may Misconstrue us in him, and wail his death. May. But, my good lord, your grace's word shall
As well as I had seen, and heard him speak:
And do not doubt, right noble princes both,
But I'll acquaint our duteous citizens
With all your just proceedings in this case.
Glo. And to that end we wish'd your lordship here,
To avoid the censures of the carping world.
Buck. But since you came too late of our intent,
Yet witness what you hear we did intend;
And so, my good lord mayor, we bid farewell.
[Exit Lord Mayor.
Glo. Go after, after, cousin Buckingham.
The mayor towards Guildhall hies him in all post:
There, at your meetest vantage of the time,
Inter the bastardy of Edward's children:
Tell them, how Edward put to death a citizen,
Heir to the crown; meaning indeed his house,
Only for saying-he would make his son
Which, by the sign thereof, was termed so.
Moreover, urge his hateful luxury,
And bestial appetite in change of lust;
Which stretch'd unto their servants, daughters,
Even where his raging eye, or savage heart,
Without control, listed to make his prey.,
Nay, for a need, thus far come near my perso! :-
Tell them, when that my mother went with child
Of that insatiate Edward, noble York,
My princely father, then had wars in France;
Found, that the issue was not his begot;
And, by just computation of the time,
Which well appeared in his lineaments,
Being nothing like the noble duke my father:
Yet touch this sparingly, as 'twere far off;
Because, my lord, you know, my mother lives.
Buck. Doubt not, my lord; I'll play the orator,
As if the golden fee, for which I plead,
Were for myself: and so, my lord, adieu.
Glo. If you thrive well, bring them to Baynard's castle;
Where you shall find me well accompanied,
With reverend fathers, and well-learned bishops.
Buck. I go; and, towards three or four o'clock,
Look for the news that the Guildhall afford s.
Glo. Go, Lovel, with all speed to doctor Shaw,
Go thou [To CAT.] to friar Penker;-bid then both
Meet me, within this hour, at Baynard's castle.
[Exeunt LovEL and CA TESBY.
Now will I in, to take some privy order
To draw the brats of Clarence out of sight
And to give notice, that no manner of person
Have, any time, recourse unto the princes.
SCENE VI.-A Street. Enter a Scrivener.
Scriv. Here is the indictment of the good lord
Which in a set hand fairly is engross'd,
That it may be to-day read o'er in Paul's.
And mark how well the sequel hangs together:-
Eleven hours I have spent to write it over,
For yesternight by Catesby was it sent me;
The precedent was full as long a doing:
And yet within these five hours Hastings lid,
Untainted, unexamined, free, at liberty.
Here's a good world the while!-Who is so
That cannot see this palpable device?
Yet who so bold, but says-he sees it not?
Bad is the world; and all will come to nought,
When such bad dealing must be seen in thought.
Buck. I did; with his contract with lady Lucy, And his contract by deputy in France: The insatiate greediness of his desires, And his enforcement of the city wives; His tyranny for trifles; his own bastardy,As being got, your father then in France; And his resemblance, being not like the duke. Withal, I did infer your lineaments,Being the right idea of your father, Both in your form and nobleness of mind = Laid open all your victories in Scotland, Your discipline in war, wisdom in peace, Your bounty, virtue, fair humility; Indeed, left nothing, fitting for your purpose, Untouch'd, or slightly handled, in discourse. And, when my oratory grew to an end,
I bade them, that did love their country's good, Cry-God save Richard, England's royal king!
Buck. No, so God help me, they spake not a word; But like dumb statues, or breathless stones,
Star'd on each other, and look'd deadly pale.
Which when I saw I reprehended them;
And ask'd the mayor, what meant this wilful silence:
His answer was,-the people were not us'd
To be spoke to, but by the recorder.
Then he was urged to tell my tale again:
Thus saith the duke, thus hath the duke inferr'd;
But nothing spoke in warrant from himself.
When he had done, some followers of mine own,
At lower end o' the hall, hurl'd up their caps,
And some ten voices cried, God save king Richard!
And thus I took the vantage of those few,-
Thanks, gentle citizens, and friends, quoth I;
This general applause, and cheerful shout,
Argues your wisdom, and your love to Richard:
And even here brake off and came away.
Glo. What tongueless blocks were they! Would they not speak?
Will not the mayor then, and his brethren, come? Buck. The mayor is here at hand: intend some fear;
Be not you spoke with, but by mighty suit:
And look you, get a prayer-book in your hand,
And stand between two churchmen, good my lord;
For on that ground I'll make a holy descant:
And be not easily won to our requests;
Play the maid's part, still answer nay, and take it.
Glo. I go; and if you plead as well for them,
As I can say nay to thee for myself,
No doubt we'll bring it to a happy issue.
Buck. Go, go, up to the leads; the lord mayor
Enter the Lord Mayor, Aldermen, and Citizens.
Welcome, my lord; I dance attendance here;
I think the duke will not be spoke withal.—
Enter, from the Castle, CATESBY.
Now, Catesby, what says your lord to my request?
Cate. He doth entreat your grace, my noble lord,
To visit him to-morrow, or next day:
He is within with two right reverend fathers,
Divinely bent to meditation;
And in no worldly suit would he be mov'd,
To draw him from his holy exercise.
Buck. Return, good Catesby, to the gracious duke:
Tell him, myself, the mayor, and aldermen,
In deep designs, in matter of great moment,
No less importing than our general good,
Are come to have some conference with his grace.
Cate. I'll signify so much unto him straight.
[Exit. Buck. Ah, ha, my lord, this prince is not an Edward!
He is not lolling on a lewd day-bed,
But on his knees at meditation;
Not dallying with a brace of courtezans,
But meditating with two deep divines;
Not sleeping to engross his idle body,
But praying to enrich his watchful soul:
Happy were England, would this virtuous prince
Take on himself the sovereignty thereof:
But, sure, I fear, we shall ne'er win him to it.
May. Marry, God defend, his grace should say
Buck. I fear, he will: Here Catesby comes again;
Now, Catesby, what says his grace?
Cate. He wonders to what end you have assembled
Such troops of citizens to come to him;
His grace not being warn'd thereof before,
He fears, my lord, you mean no good to him.
Buck. Sorry I am, my noble cousin should
Suspect me, that I mean no good to him:
By heaven, we come to him in perfect love;
And so once more return and tell his grace.
When holy and devout religious men
Are at their beads, 'tis hard to draw them thence;
So sweet is zealous contemplation.
Enter GLOSTER, in a Gallery above, between two
Bishops. CATESBY returns.
May. See, where his grace stands 'tween two clergymen !
Buck. Two props of virtue for a christian prince, To stay him from the fall of vanity: And, see, a book of prayer in his hand;
True ornaments to know a holy man.--
Famous Plantagenet, most gracious prince,
Lend favorable ear to our requests;
And pardon us the interruption
Of thy devotion, and right-christian zeal.
Glo. My lord, there needs no such apology;
I rather do beseech you pardon me,
Who, earnest in the service of my God,
Neglect the visitation of my friends.
But, leaving this, what is your grace's pleasure?
Buck. Even that, I hope, which pleaseth God
And all good men of this ungovern'd isle.
Glo. I do suspect I have done some offence, That seems disgracious in the city's eye; And that you come to reprehend my ignorance. Buck. You have, my lord; Would it might please
On our entreaties to amend your fault!
Glo. Else wherefore breathe I in a christian land?
Buck. Know, then, it is your fault, that you resign
The supreme seat, the throne majestical,
The sceptred office of your ancestors,
Your state of fortune, and your due of birth,
The lineal glory of your royal house,
To the corruption of a blemish'd stock:
Whilst, in the mildness of your sleepy thoughts,
(Which here we waken to our country's good,)
The noble isle doth want her proper limbs;
Her face defaced with scars of infamy,
Her royal stock graft with ignoble plants,
And almost shoulder'ds in the swallowing gulf
Of dark forgetfulness and deep oblivion.
Which to recure, we heartily solicit
Your gracious self to take on you the charge
And kingly government of this your land:
Not as protector, steward, substitute,
Or lowly factor for another's gain:
Your right of birth, your empery, your own.
But as successively, from blood to blood,
For this, consorted with the citizens,
Your very worshipful and loving friends,
And by their vehement instigation,
In this just suit come I to move your grace.
Or bitterly to speak in your reproof,
Glo. I cannot tell, if to depart in silence,
Best fitteth my degree, or your condition:
If, not to answer, you might haply think,
Tongue-tied ambition, not replying, yielded
To bear the golden yoke of sovereignty,
Which fondly you would here impose on me;
If to reprove you for this suit of yours,
So season'd with your faithful love to me,
Then, on the other side, I check'd my friends.
Therefore-to speak, and to avoid the first;
And, then in speaking, not to incur the last,-
Definitely thus I answer you.
Your love deserves my thanks; but my desert
Unmeritable, shuns your high request.
First, if all obstacles were cut away,
And that my path were even to the crown,
As the ripe revenue and due of birth;
Yet so much is my poverty of spirit,
So mighty, and so many my defects,
That I would rather hide me from my greatness,-
Being a bark to brook no mighty sea,-
Than in my greatness covet to be hid,
And in the vapor of my glory smother'd.
But, God be thank'd, there is no need of me;
(And much I need2 to help you, if need were;)
The royal tree hath left us royal fruit,
Which, mellow'd by the stealing hours of time,
Will well become the seat of majesty,
And make, no doubt, us happy by his reign.
On him I lay what you would lay on me,
The right and fortune of his happy stars,-
Which, God defend, that I should wring from him!
Buck. My lord, this argues conscience in your
And, in this resolution here we leave you; Come, citizens, we will entreat no more.
A care-craz'd mother to a many sons,
A beauty-waning and distressed widow,
Even in the afternoon of her best days,
Made prize and purchase of his wanton eye,
Seduced the pitch and height of all his thoughts
To base declension and loath'd bigamy:
By her, in his unlawful bed, he got
[Exeunt BUCKINGHAM and Citizens. Cate. Call them again, sweet prince, accept their
If you deny them, all the land will rue it.
Glo. Will you enforce me to a world of cares?
This Edward, whom our manners call-the prince. Well, call them again; I am not made of stone.
More bitterly could I expostulate,
Save that, for reverence to some alive,
I give a sparing limit to my tongue;
Then, good my lord, take to your royal self
This proiler'd benefit of dignity:
If not to bless us and the land withal,
Yet to draw forth your noble ancestry
From the corruption of abusing time,
Unto a lincal true-derived course.
May. Do, good my lord; your citizens entreat you.
Buck. Refuse not, mighty lord, this proffer'd love.
Cate. O make them joyful, grant their lawful
Glo. Alas, why would you heap those cares on me?
I am unfit for state and majesty :-
I do beseech you, take it not amiss;
I cannot, nor I will not, yield to you.
Buck. If you refuse it,-as in love and zeal,
Loath to depose the child, your brother's son;
As well we know your tenderness of heart,
And gentle, kind, efleminate remorse,
Which we have noted in you to your kindred,
And equally, indeed, to all estates,-
Yet know, whe'r you accept our suit or no,
Your brother's son shall never reign our king;
But we will plant some other in your throne,
To the disgrace and downfall of your house."
But penetrable to your kind entreaties, [Ex. CATE. Albeit against my conscience and my soul.—
Re-enter BUCKINGHAM and the rest.
Cousin of Buckingham,-and sage, grave men,―
Since you will buckle fortune on my back,
To bear her burden, whe'r I will, or no,
I must have patience to endure the load:
But if black scandal, or foul-faced reproach,
Attend the sequel of your imposition,
Your mere enforcement shall acquittance me
From all the impure blots and stains thereof:
For God he knows, and you may partly see,
How far I am from the desire of this.
May. God bless your grace! we see it, and will say it.
Glo. In saying so, you shall but say the truth. Buck. Then I salute you with this royal title.Long live king Richard, England's worthy king!
Buck. To-morrow may it please you to be crown'd?
Glo. Even when you please, since you will have it so.
Buck. To-morrow then we will attend your grace. And so, most joyfully we take our leave. Glo. Come, let us to our holy work again.[To the Bishops. Farewell, good cousin ;-farewell, gentle friends. [Exeunt.
And, in good time, here the lieutenant comes.-
Master Lieutenant, pray you, by your leave,
How doth the prince, and my young son of York?
Brak. Right well, dear madam: By your patience,
I may not suffer you to visit them;
The king hath strictly charged the contrary.
Q. Eliz. The king! who's that?
I mean the lord protector. Q. Eliz. The Lord protect him from that kingly title!
Hath he set bounds between their love, and me?
I am their mother, who shall bar me from them?
Duch. I am their father's mother, I will see them.
Anne. Their aunt I am in law, in love their
Then bring me to their sights; I'll bear thy blame,
And take thy office from thee, on thy peril.
Brak. No, madam, no, I may not leave it so; I am bound by oath, and therefore pardon me. [Exit BRAKENBURY.
Enter STANLEY. Stan. Let me but meet you, ladies, one hour hence,
And I'll salute your grace of York as mother,
And reverend looker-on of two fair queens.
Come, madam, you must straight to Westminster,
[To the DUCHESS OF GLOSTER.
There to be crowned Richard's royal queen.
Q. Eliz. Ah, cut my lace asunder!
Or else I swoon with this dead-killing news.
That my pent heart may have some scope to beat,
Anne. Despiteful tidings! O unpleasing nevs!
Dor. Be of good cheer: Mother, how fares
Q. Eliz. O'Dorset, speak not to me, get thee gone, Death and destruction dog thee at the heels; Thy mother's name is ominous to children: If thou wilt outstrip death, go cross the seas, Go, hie thee, hie thee, from this slaughter-house, And live with Richmond, from the reach of hell. Lest thou increase the number of the dead; And make me die the thrall of Margaret's curse, Nor wife, mother, nor England's counted queen. Stan. Full of wise care is this your counsel,
Take all the swift advantage of the hours;
You shall have letters from me to my son
In your behalf, to meet you on the way:
Be not ta'en tardy by unwise delay.
Duch. O ill-dispersing wind of misery!-
O my accursed womb, the bed of death;
A cockatrice hast thou hatch'd to the world,
Whose unavoided eye is murderous!
Stan. Come, madam, come; I in all haste
Anne. And I with all unwillingness will go. O, would to God that the inclusive verge Of golden metal, that must round my brow, Were red-hot steel, to sear me to the brain! Anointed let me be with deadly venom; And die, ere men can say-God save the que Q. Eliz. Go, go, poor soul, I envy not thy glory; Anne. No! why?-When he, that is my husband
To feed my humor, wish thyself no harm.
Came to me, as I follow'd Henry's corse;
When scarce the blood was well-washed from his
Which issued from my other angel husband.
And that dead saint which then I weeping follow'd,
O, when, I say, I look'd on Richard's face,
This was my wish,-Be thou, quoth I, accurs'd,
For making me so young, so old a widow!
And, when thou wed'st, let sorrow haunt thy bed;
And be thy wife (if any be so mad)
More miserable by the life of thee,
Than thou hast made me by my dear lord's death!
Lo, ere I can repeat this curse again,
Even in so short a space, my woman's heart
Grossly grew captive to his honey words,
And prov'd the subject of mine own soul's curse:
Which ever since hath held mine eyes from rest;
For never yet one hour in his bed
Did I enjoy the golden dew of sleep,
But with his timorous dreams was still awak'd.
Besides, he hates me for my father Warwick;
And will, no doubt, shortly be rid of me.
Q. Eliz. Poor heart, adieu; I pity thy complaining.
Anne. No more than with my soul I mourn for yours.
Dor. Farewell, thou woful welcomer of glory! Anne. Adieu, poor soul, that tak'st thy leave of it!
Duch. Go thou to Richmond, and good fortune guide thee![TO DORSET. Go thou to Richard, and good angels tend thee![To ANNE. Go thou to sanctuary, and good thoughts possess [To Q. ELIZABETH. I to my grave, where peace and rest lie with me! Eighty odd years of sorrow have I seen, And each hour's joy wreck'd with a week of teen.4 Q. Eliz. Stay yet; look back, with me, unto the Tower.
Pity, you ancient stones, those tender babes,
Whom envy hath immur'd within your walls!
Rough cradle for such little pretty ones!
Rude ragged nurse! old sullen play-fellow
For tender princes, use my babies well!
So foolish sorrow bids your stones farewell.
SCENE II-A Room of State in the Palace. Flourish of Trumpets. RICHARD, as King, upon his Throne; BUCKINGHAM, CATESBY, a Page, and others.
K. Rich. Stand all apart.-Cousin of Buckingham,
Buck. My gracious sovereign.
K. Rich. Give me thy hand. Thus high, by thy advice,
And thy assistance, is king Richard seated:-
But shall we wear these glories for a day?
Or shall they last, and we rejoice in them?
Buck. Still live they, and for ever let them last! K. Rich. Ah, Buckingham, now do I play the touch,5
To try if thou be current gold, indeed:
Young Edward lives;-Think now what I would
Buck. Say on, my loving lord.
K. Rich. Why, Buckingham, I say, I would be king.
Buck. Why, so you are, my thrice-renowned liege. K. Rich. Ha! am I king? 'Tis so: but Edward lives.
Buck. True, noble prince. K. Rich. O bitter consequence, That Edward still should live,-true, noble prince!Cousin, thou wast not wont to be so dull: Shall I be plain? I wish the bastards dead; And I would have it suddenly perform'd. What say'st thou now? speak suddenly, be brief. Buck. Your grace may do your pleasure. K. Rich. Tut, tut, thou art all ice, thy kindness freezes:
Say, have I thy consent, that they shall die?
Buck. Give me some breath, some little pause,
Before I positively speak in this:
I will resolve your grace immediately.
Cate. The king is angry; see, he gnaws his lip.
K. Rich. I will converse with iron-witted fools,
[Descends from his Throne.
And unrespective boys: none are for me,
That look into me with considerate eyes;
K. Rich. Know'st thou not any, whom corrupting gold
Would tempt unto a close exploit of death?
Page. I know a discontented gentleman,
Whose humble means match not his haughty mind:
Gold were as good as twenty orators,
And will, no doubt, tempt him to any thing.
K. Rich. What is his name?
His name, my lord, is-Tyrrel. K. Rich. I partly know the man; Go, call him hither, boy. [Exit Page.
The deep-revolving wittys Buckingham
No more shall be the neighbor to my counsels:
Hath he so long held out with me untir'd,
And stops he now for breath ?-well, be it so.-
How now, lord Stanley? what's the news?
Know, my loving lord,
The marquis Dorset, as I hear, is fled
To Richmond, in the parts where he abides.
K. Rich. Come hither, Catesby: rumor it abroad,
That Anne, my wife, is very grievous sick;
I will take order for her keeping close.
Inquire me out some mean-born gentleman,
Whom I will marry straight to Clarence' daughter:
The boy is foolish, and I fear not him.-
Look, how thou dream'st!-I say again, give out,
That Anne my queen is sick, and like to die:
About it; for it stands me much upon,9
To stop all hopes, whose growth may damage me.-
I must be married to my brother's daughter,
Or else my kingdom stands on brittle glass:
Murder her brothers, and then marry her!
Uncertain way of gain! But I am in
So far in blood, that sin will pluck on sin.
Tear-talling pity dwells not in this eye.-
Re-enter Page, with TYRREL.
Re-enter BUCKINGHAM. Buck. My lord, I have considered in my mind The late demand that you did sound me in. K. Rich. Well, let that rest. Dorset is fled to Richmond.
Buck. I hear the news, my lord.
K. Rich. Stanley, he is your wife's son:-Well, look to it.
Buck. My lord, I claim the gift, my due by promise,
For which your honor and your faith is pawn'd
The carldom of Hereford, and the movables,
Which you have promised I shall possess.
K. Rich. Stanley, look to your wife; if she convey
Letters to Richmond, you shall answer it.
Buck. What says your highness to my just re-
K. Rich. I do remember me,-Henry the sixth Did prophesy, that Richmond should be king, When Richmond was a little peevish2 boy. A king!-perhaps
Buck. My lord,
It is of great consequence to my designs. 1 Act.
K. Rich. How chance, the prophet could not at that time,
Have told me, I being by, that I should kill him?
Buck. My lord, your promise for the earldom,-
K. Rich. Richmond!-When last I was at Exeter,
The mayor in courtesy show'd me the castle,
And call'd it-Rouge-Mont: at which name, I
Because a bard of Ireland told me once,
I should not live long after I saw Richmond.
Buck. My lord,-
To put your grace in mind of what you promis'd me.
K. Rich. Well, but what is't o'clock?
K. Rich. Well, let it strike. Buck.
K. Rich. Because that, like a Jack,3 thou keep'st the stroke
Betwixt thy begging and my meditation.
I am not in the giving vein to-day.
Buck. Why, then resolve me whe'r you will,
K. Rich. Thou troublest me; I am not in the vein. [Exeunt KING RICHARD and Train. Buck. And is it thus? repays he my deep service With such contempt? made I him king for this? O, let me think on Hastings; and begone
To Brecknock,4 while my fearful head is on. [Exit.
SCENE III.-The same.
Tyr. The tyrannous and bloody act is done;
The most arch deed of piteous massacre,
That ever yet this land was guilty of.
Dighton and Forrest, whom I did suborn
To do this piece of ruthless butchery,
Albeit they were flesh'd villains, bloody dogs,
Melting with tenderness and mild compassion,
Wept like two children, in their death's sad story.
O thus, quoth Dighton, lay the gentle babes,—
Thus, thus, quoth Forrest, girling one another,
Within their alabaster innocent arms:
Their lips were four red roses on a stalk,
Which in their summer beauty kiss'd each other,
A book of prayers on their pillow lay,
Which once, quoth Forrest, almost changed my
But, O, the devil-there the villain stopp'd;
When Dighton thus told on,-we smothered
The most replenished sweet work of nature,
That, from the prime creation, ere she framed.
Hence both are gone with conscience and remorse,
They could not speak; and so I left them both,
To bear these tidings to the bloody king.
And here he comes:-All health, my sovereign lord!
K. Rich. Kind Tyrrel! am I happy in thy news?
Tyr. If to have done the thing you gave in charge
Beget your happiness, be happy then,
For it is done.
K. Rich. But didst thou see them dead?
Tyr. I did, my lord.
K. Rich. And buried, gentle Tyrrel?
Tyr. The chaplain of the Tower hath buried them;
But where, to say the truth, I do not know.
K. Rich. Come to me, Tyrrel,soon, at after supper, When thou shalt tell the process of their death. Mean time, but think how I may do thee good, And be inheritor of thy desire. Farewell, till then.
Tyr. I humbly take my leave. [Exit. K. Rich. The son of Clarence have I penn'd up close; His daughter meanly have I match'd in marriage; The sons of Edward sleep in Abraham's bosom; And Anne my wife hath bid the world good-night. Now, for I know the Bretagnes Richmond aims At young Elizabeth, my brother's daughter, And, by that knot, looks proudly on the crown, To her go I, a jolly thriving wooer.
A Jack of the clock-house is an image like those at St. Dunstan's church in Fleet-street, and then a common appendage to clocks.
The country in which Richmond had taken refuge.
Than Buckingham and his rash-levied strength.
Come, I have learn'd, that fearful commenting
Is leaden servitor to dull delay;
Delay leads impotent and snail-paced beggary:
Then fiery expedition be my wing,
Jove's Mercury, and herald for a king!
Go, muster men: My counsel is my shield;
We must be brief, when traitors brave the field.
SCENE IV. Before the Palace.
Enter QUEEN MARGARET.
And drop into the rotten mouth of death.
Q. Mar. So, now prosperity begins to mellow,
Here in these confines slily have I lurk'd,
To watch the waning of mine enemies.
A dire induction am I witness to,
And will to France; hoping the consequence
Will prove as bitter, black, and tragical.
Withdraw thee, wretched Margaret! Who comes
Enter QUEEN ELIZABETH and the DUCHESS of York. Q. Eliz. Ah, my poor princes! ah, my tender babes!
My unblown flowers, new-appearing sweets!
If yet your gentle souls fly in the air,
And be not fix'd in doom perpetual,
Hover about me with your airy wings,
And hear your mother's lamentation!
Q. Mar. Hover about her; say, that right for right
Hath dimm'd your infant morn to aged night.
Duch. So many miseries have craz'd my voice, That my woe-wearied tongue is still and mute,Edward Plantagenet, why art thou dead?
Q. Mar. Plantagenet doth quit Plantagenet. Edward for Edward pays a dying debt.
Q. Eliz. Wilt thou, O God, fly from such gentle lambs,
And throw them in the entrails of the wolf? When didst thou sleep, when such a deed was done? Q. Mar. When holy Harry died, and my sweet
Duch. Dead life, blind sight, poor mortal-living ghost,
Woe's scene, world's shame, grave's due, by life usurp'd,
Brief abstract and record of tedious days,
Rest thy unrest on England's lawful earth,
Unlawfully made drunk with innocent blood!
Q. Eliz. Ah, that thou wouldst as soon afford a grave,
As thou canst yield a melancholy seat;
Then would I hide my bones, not rest them here!
Ah, who hath any cause to mourn, but we?
[Sitting down by her.
Q. Mar. If ancient sorrow be most reverent,
Give mine the benefit of seniory,7
And let my griefs frown on the upper hand.
If sorrow can admit society,
[Sitting down with them.
Tell o'er your woes again by viewing mine:-
I had an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him;
I had a husband, till a Richard kill'd him:
Thou hadst an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him;
Thou hadst a Richard, till a Richard kill'd him.
Duch. I had a Richard too, and thou didst kill
I had a Rutland too, thou holp'st to kill him.
Q. Mar. Thou hadst a Clarence too, and Richard
From forth the kennel of thy womb hath crept
A hell-hound that doth hunt us all to death:
That dog, that had his teeth before his eyes,
To worry lambs, and lap their gentle blood;
That foul defacer of God's handy-work;