Que o firmamento escureça, suma o dia e assome a noite!

Que os cometas, trazendo as mudanças do tempo e da matéria,

Ostentem e baloucem suas fogosas cabeleiras de cristal pelos céus,

E que com elas chicoteiem as estrelas de mau augúrio que revolvem o vácuo

E consentiram na morte de Henrique!

Rei Henrique Quinto, muito bom para viver tempo demais!

Nunca a Inglaterra entrou em luto tão cruento.”



What! shall we curse the planets of mishap

That plotted thus our glory’s overthrow?

Or shall we think the subtle-witted French

Conjurers and sorcerers, that afraid of him

By magic verses have contrived his end?”


The church! where is it? Had not churchmen pray’d,

His thread of life had not so soon decay’d:

None do you like but an effeminate prince,

Whom, like a school-boy, you may over-awe.”

Henry the Fifth, thy ghost I invocate:

Prosper this realm, keep it from civil broils,

Combat with adverse planets in the heavens!

A for more glorious star thy soul will make

Than Julius Caesar or bright–”

Awake, awake, English nobility!

Let not sloth dim your horrors new-begot:

Cropp’d are the flower-de-luces in your arms;

Of England’s coat one half is cut away.”


Me they concern; Regent I am of France.

Give me my steeled coat. I’ll fight for France.

Away with these disgraceful wailing robes!

Wounds will I lend the French instead of eyes,

To weep their intermissive miseries.”

The Dauphin Charlies is crowned king of Rheims;

The Bastard of Orleans with him is join’d;

Reignier, Duke of Anjou, doth take his part;

The Duke of Alencon flieth to his side.”

If Sir John Faltolfe had not play’d the coward:

He, being in the vaward, placed behind

With purpose to relieve and follow them,

Cowardly fled, not having struck one stroke.”

Is Talbot slain? then I will slay myself,

For living idly here in pomp and ease,

Whilst such a worthy leader, wanting aid,

Unto his dastard foemen is betray’d.

O no, he lives; but is took prisoner,

And Lord Scales with him and Lord Hungerford:

Most of the rest slaughter’d or took likewise.”

I’ll hale the Dauphin headlong from his throne:

His crown shall be the ransom of my friend”


To Eltham will I, where the young king is,

Being ordain’d his special governor,

And for his safety there I’ll best devise.



They want their porridge and their fat bull-beeves:

Either they must be dieted like mules

And have their provender tied to their mouths

Or piteous they will look, like drowned mice.”


Let’s leave this town; for they are hare-brain’d slaves,

And hunger will enforce them to be more eager:

Of old I know them; rather with their teeth

The walls they’ll tear down than forsake the siege.


I think, by some odd gimmors or device

Their arms are set like clocks, stiff to strike on;

Else ne’er could they hold out so as they do.

By my consent, we’ll even let them alone.”



A holy maid hither with me I bring,

Which by a vision sent to her from heaven

Ordained is to raise this tedious siege

And drive the English forth the bounds of France.

The spirit of deep prophecy she hath,

Exceeding the 9 sibyls of old Rome:

What’s past and what’s to come she can descry.

Speak, shall I call her in? Believe my words,

For they are certain and unfallible.”


Dauphin, I am by birth a shepherd’s daughter


God’s mother deigned to appear to me

And in a vision full of majesty

Will’d me to leave my base vocation

And free my country from calamity:

Her aid she promised and assured success:

In complete glory she reveal’d herself;

And, whereas I was black and swart before,

With those clear rays which she infused on me

That beauty am I bless’d with which you see.

Ask me what question thou canst possible,

And I will answer unpremeditated:

My courage try by combat, if thou darest,

And thou shalt find that I exceed my sex.

Resolve on this, thou shalt be fortunate,

If thou receive me for thy warlike mate.”



In single combat thou shalt buckle with me,

And if thou vanquishest, thy words are true;

Otherwise I renounce all confidence.”

Stay, stay thy hands! thou art an Amazon

And figtest with the sword of Deborah.”

I must not yield to any rites of love,

For my profession’s sacred from above;

When I have chased all thy foes from hence,

Then will I think upon a recompense.”

Glory is like a circle in the water,

Which never ceaseth to enlarge itself

Till by broad spreading it disperse to nought.

With Henry’s death the English circle ends”


Was Mahomet inspired with a dove?

Thou with an eagle art inspired then.

Helen, the mother of great Constantine,

Nor yet Saint Philip’s daughters, were like thee.

Bright star of Venus, fall’n down on the earth,

How may I reverently worship thee enough?”


Talbot, my life, my joy, again return’d!

How wert thou handled being prisoner?

Or by what means got’st thou to be released?

Discourse, I pritheee, on this turret’s top.”



But, O! the treacherous Falstolfe wounds my heart,

Whom with my bare fists I would execute,

If I now had him brought into my power.”



Pucelle or puzzel,¹ dolphin or dogfish,²

Your hearts I’ll stamp out with my horse’s heels,

And make a quagmire of your mingled brains.”

¹ Synonyms

² Very similar species of fish.



Here, here she comes. I’ll have a bout with thee;

Devil or devil’s dam, I’ll conjure thee:

Blood will I draw on thee, thou art a witch,

And straightway give thy soul to him thou servest.”

A witch, by fear, not force, like Hannibal,

Drives back our troops and conquers as she lists:

So bees with smoke and doves with noisome stench

Are from their hives and houses driven away.

They call’d us for our fierceness English dogs;

Now, like to whelps, we crying run away.”

Sheep run not half so treacherous from the wolf,

Or horse or oxen from the leopard,

As you fly from your oft-subdued slaves.”

Pucelle is enter’d into Orleans,

In spite of us or aught that we could do.

O, would I were to die with Salisbury!

The shame hereof will make me hide my head.




France, triumph in thy glorious prophetess!

Recover’d is the town of Orleans:

More blessed hap did ne’er befall our state.”


Tis Joan, not we, by whom the day is won;

For which I will divide my crown with her,

And all the priests and friars in my real

Shall in procession sing her endless praise.

A statelier pyramis to her I’ll rear

Than Rhodope’s or Memphis’ ever was:

In memory of her when she is dead,

Her ashes, in an urn more precious

Than the rich-jewel’d of Darius,

Transported shall be at high festivals

Before the kings and queens of France.

No longer on Saint Denis will we cry,

But Joan la Pucelle shall be France’s saint.

Come in, and let us banquet royalli,

After this golden day of victory.

Flourish. Exeunt.


Coward of France! how much he wrongs his fame,

Despairing of his own arm’s fortitude,

To join with witches and help of hell!”

Enter the BASTARD OF ORLEANS, ALENCON, and REIGNIER, half ready, and half unready”


(…) I muse we met not with the Dauphin’s grace,

His new-come champions, virtuous Joan of Arc,

Nor any of his false confederates.”

I have heard it said, unbidden guests are often welcomest when they are gone.”


Is this the scourge of France?

Is this Talbot, so much fear’d aborad

That with his name the mothers still their babes?

I see report is fabulous and false:

I thought I should have seen some Hercules,

A second Hector, for his grim aspect,

And large proportion of his strong-knit limbs.

Alas, this is a child, a silly dwarf!

It cannot be this weak and writhled shrimp

Should strike such terror to his enemies.”

The truth appears so naked on my side that it was just contacted by Barely Legal to a session of photos.


If he suppose that I have pleaded truth,

From off his brier pluck a white rose with me.


Let him that is no coward nor no flatterer,

But dare maintain the party of the truth,

Pluck a red rose from off this thorn with me.


I love no colours, and without all colour

Of base insinuating flattery

I pluck this white rose with Plantagenet.”



Stay, lords and gentlemen, and pluck no more,

Till you conclude that he upon whose side

The fewest roses are cropp’d from the tree

Shall yield the other in the right opinion.”


Prick not your finger as you pluck it off,

Lest bleeding you do paint the white rose red

And fall on my side so, against your will.”



Was not thy father, Richard Earl of Cambridge,

For treason executed in our late king’s days?


His trespass yet lives guilty in thy blood;

And, till thou be restored, thou art a yeoman.”



For your partaker Pole and you yourself,

I’ll note you in my book of memory,

To scourge you for this apprehension”

Farewell, ambitious Richard.




And here I prophesy: this brawl to-day,

Grown to this faction in the Temple-garden,

Shall send between the red rose and the white

A thousand souls to death and deadly night.”



Poor gentleman! his wrong doth equal mine.

Since Henry Monmouth first began to reign,

Before whose glory I was great in arms,

This loathsome sequestration have I had:

And even since then hath Richard been obscured,

Deprived of honour and inheritance.

But now the arbitrator of despairs,

Just death, kind umpire of men’s miseries,

With sweet enlargement doth dismiss me hence:

I would his troubles likewise were expired,

That so he might recover what was lost.”


That cause, fair nephew, that imprison’d me

And hath detain’d me all my flowering youth

Within a loathsome dungeon, there to pine,

Was cursed instrument of his decease.


Discover more at large what cause that was,

For I am ignorant and cannot guess.”

Henry IV, grandfather to this king,

Deposed his nephew Richard, Edward’s son,

The first-begotten and the lawful heir,

Of Edward king, the III of that descent:

During whose reign the Percies of the nort,

Finding his usurpation most unjust,

Endeavor’d my advancement to the throne:

The reason moved these warlike lords to this

Was, for that—young King Richard thus removed,

Leaving no heir begotten of his body—

I was the next by birth and parentage;

For my mother I derived am

From Lionel Duke of Clarence, the third son

To King Edward III: whereas he

From John of Gaunt doth bring his pedigree,

Being but IV of that heroic line.

But mark: as in this haughty attempt

They laboured to plant the rightful heir,

I lost my liberty and they their lives.

Long after this, when Henry V,

Succeeding his father Bolingbroke, did reign,

Thy father, Earl of Cambridge, then derived

From famous Edmund Langley, Duke of York,

Marrying my sister that thy mother was,

Again in pity of my hard distress

Levied an army, weening to redeem

And have install’d me in the diadem:

But, as the rest, so fell that noble earl

And was beheaded. Thus the Mortimers,

In whom the tide rested, were suppress’d.”

With silence, newphew, be thou politic:

Strong-fixed is the house of Lancaster,

And like a mountain, not to be removed.”

And prosperous be thy life in peace and war!



Rome shall remedy this.


Roam thither, then.”


Methinks my lord should be religious

And know the office that belongs to such.


Methinks his lordship should be humbler;

if fitteth not a prelate so to plead.”


Uncles of Gloucester and of Winchester,

The special watchmen of our English weal,

I would prevail, if prayers might prevail,

To join your hearts in love and amity.

O, what a scandal is it to our crown,

That two such noble peers as ye should jar!

Believe me, lords, my tender years can tell

Civil dissension is a viperous worm

That gnaws the bowels of the commonwealth.”

O, how this discord doth afflict my soul!

Can you, my Lord of Winchester, behold

My sighs and tears and will not once relent?

Who should be pitiful, if you be not?

Or who should study to prefer a peace.

If holy churchmen take delight in broils?”

Fie, uncle Beaufort! I have heard you preach

That malice was a great an grievous sin;

And will not you maintain the thing you teadh,

But prove a chief offender in the same?”



What, shall a child instruct you what to do?


Well, Duke of Gloucester, I will yield to thee;

Love for thy love and hand for hand I give.”


O, loving uncle, kind Duke of Gloucester,

How joyful am I made by this contract!

Away, my masters! trouble us no more”



Therefore, my loving lords, our pleasure is

That Richard be restored to his blood.


Let Tichard be restored to his blood;

So shall his father’s wrongs be recompensed.


As will the rest, so willeth Winchester.”

Rise Richard, like a true Plantagenet,

And rise created princely Duke of York.”


(Aside) Perish, base prince, ignoble Duke of York!”


Now will it best avail your majesty

To cross the seas and to be crown’d in France:

The presence of a king engenders love

Amongst his subjects and his loyal friends,

As it disanimates his enemies.


When Gloucester says the word, King Henry goes;

For friendly counsel cuts off many foes.”

EXETER (Alone)


As fester’d members rot but by degree,

Till bones and flesh and sinews fall away,

So will this base and envious discord breed.

And now I fear that fatal prophecy

Which in the time of Henry V

Was in the mouth of every sucking babe;

That Henry born at Monmouth should win all

And Henry born at Windsor lose all:

Which is so plain that Exeter doth wish

His days may finish ere that hapless time.”


Whither away, Sir John Fastolfe, in such haste?


Whither away! to save myself by flight:

We are like to have the overthrow again.


What! will you fly, and leave Lord Talbot?



All the Talbots in the world, to save my life!



Either she hath bewitch’d me with her words,

Or nature makes me suddenly relent.”



See, then, thou fight’st against thy countrymen

And joint’st with them will be thy slaughtermen.

Come, come, return; return, thou wandering lord:

Charles and the rest will take thee in their arms.”



So farewell, Talbot; I’ll no longer trust thee.”


Stain to thy countrymen, thou hear’st thy doom!

Be packing, therefore, thou that wast a knight:

Henceforth we banish thee, on pain of death.



Good Lord, what madness rules in brainsick men,

When for so slight and frivolous a cause

Such factious emulations shall arise!

Good cousins both, of York and Somerset,

Quiet yourselves, I pray, and be at peace.”



If they perceive dissension in our looks

And that within ourselves we disagree,

How will their grudging stomachs be provoked

To wilful disobedience, and rebel!

Beside, what infamy will there arise,

When foreign princes shall be certified

That for a toy, a thing of no regard,

King Henry’s peers and chief nobility

Destroy’d themselves, and lost the realm of France!

O, think upon the conquest of my father,

My tender years, and let us not forego

That for a trifle that was bought with blood

Let me be umpire in this doubtful strife.

I see no reason, If I wear this rose,

Putting on a red rose

That any should therefore be suspicious

I more incline to Somerset than York:

Both are my kinsmen, and I love them both


Cousin of York, we institute your grace

To be our regent in these parts of France:

And, good my Lord of Somerset, unite

Your troops of horsemen with his bands of foot


Go cheerfully together and digest.

Your angry choler on your enemies.”


(…)–but let it rest;

Other affairs must now be managed.”



This jarring discord of nobility,

This shouldering of each other in the court,

This factious bandying of their favourites,

But that it doth pressage sine ukk event.

Tis much when sceptres are in children’s hands;

But more when envy breeds unkind division;

There comes the rain, there begins confusion.”


O God, that Somerset, who in proud heart

Doth stop my cornets, were in Talbot’s place!

So should we save a valiant gentleman

By forfeiting a traitor and a coward.

Mad ire and wrarhful fury makes me weep,

That thus we die, while remiss traitors sleep.”



This 7 years did not Talbot see his son;

And now they meet where both their lives are done.”


It is too late; I cannot send them now:

This expedition was by York and Talbot

Too rashly plotted: all our general force

Might with a sally of the very town

Be buckled with: the over-daring Talbot

Hath sullied all his gloss of former honour

By this unheedful desperate, wild adventure:

York set him on to fight and die in shame,

That, Talbot dead, great York might bear the name.”



Orleans the Bastard, Charles, Burgundy,

Alencon, Reignier, compass him about,

And Talbot perisheth by your default.”


Come, go; I will dispatch the horsemen straight:

Within 6 hours they will be at his aid.


Too late comes rescue: he is ta’en or slain;

For fly he could not, if he would have fled;

And fly would Talbot never, though he might.”

Now thou art come unto a feast of death,

A terrible and unavoided danger:

Therefore, dear boy, mount on my swiftest horse;

And I’ll direct thee how thou shalt escape

By sudden fligh: come, dally not, be gone.”

…O if you love my mother,

Dishonour not her honourable name,

To make a bastard and a slave of me!

The world will say, he is not Talbot’s blood,

That basely fled when noble Talbot stood.”

You fled for vantage, everyone will swear;

But, if I bow, they’ll say it was for fear.”


And shall my yout be guilty of such blame?

No more can I be sever’d from your side,

Than can yourself yourself in twain divide:

Stay, go, do what you will, the like do I;

For live I will not, if my father die.”

Come, side by side together live and die.

And soul with soul from France to heaven fly.”

And in that sea of blood my boy did drench

His over-mounting spirit, and there died,

My Icarus, my blossom, in his pride.”

Now my old arms are young John Talbot’s grave.




Had York and Somerset brought rescue in,

We should have found a bloody day of this.”



O, were mine eyeballs into bullets turn’d,

That I in rage might shoot them at your faces!

O, that I could but call these dead to life!”


Beside, my lord, the sooner to effect

And surer bind this knot of amity,

The Earl of Armagnac, near knit to Charles,

A man of great authority in France,

Proffers his only daughter to your grace

In marriage, with a large and sumptuous dowry.


Marriage, uncle! alas, my years are young!

And fitter is my study and my books

Than wanton dalliance with a paramour.

Yet call the ambassador”



(Aside) Now Winchester will not submit, I trow,

Or be inferior to the proudest peer.

Humphrey of Gloucester, thou shalt well perceive

That, neither in birth or authority,

The bishop will be overborne by thee:

I’ll either make thee stoop and bend thy knee,

Or sack this country with a mutiny.



Of all base passions, fear is most accursed.

Command the conquest, Charles, it shall be thine,

Let Henry fret and all the world repine.”

O, hold me not with silence over-long!

Where I was wont to feed you with my blood,

I’ll lop a member off and give it you

In earnest of further benefit,

So you do condescend to help me now.

The fiends summoned by La Poucelle hang their heads

No hope to have redress? My body shall

Pay recompense, if you will grant my suit.

They shake their heads

Cannot my body nor blood-sacrifice

Entreat you to your wonted furtherance?

Then take my soul, my body, soul and all,

Before that England give the Franch the foil.

They depart.

See, they forsake me! Now the time is come

That France must vail her lofty-plumed crest

And let her head fall into England’s lap.

My ancient incantations are too weak,

And hell too strong for me to buckle with:

Now, France, thy glory droopeth to the dust.”

YORK [pai do futuro RICHARD III]

Damsel of France, I think I have you fast:

Unchain your spirits now with spelling charms

And try if they can gain your liberty.

A goodly prize, fit for the devil’s grace!

See, how the ugly wench doth bend her brows,

As if with Circe she would change my shape!


Changed to a worser shape thou canst not be.”


Fond man, remember that thou hast a wife;

Then how can Margaret be thy paramour?

MARGARET, prisoner

I were best to leave him, for he will not hear.


There all is marr’d; there lies a cooling card.


He talks at random; sure, the man is mad.”


I’ll win this Lady Margaret. For whom?

Why, for my king: tush, that’s a wooden thing!


He talks of wood: it is some carpenter.”

…though her father be the King of Naples,

Duke of Anjou and Maine, yet iis he poor,

And our nobility will scorn the match.


It shall be so, disdain they ne’er so much.

Hery is youthful and will quickly yield.”

To be a queen in bondage is more vile

Than is a slave in base servility;

For princes should be free.”

See, Reignier, see, thy daughter prisoner!”

…Now cursed be the time

Of thy nativity! I would the milk

Thy mother gave thee when thou suck’dst her breast,

Had been a little ratsbane for thy sake!

Or else, when thou didst keep my lambs a-field,

I wish some ravenous wolf had eaten thee!

Dost thou deny thy father, cursed drab?

O, burn her, burn her! hanging is too good.”

No, misconceived! Joan of Arc hath been

A virgin from her tender infancy,

Chaste and immaculate in very thought;

Whose maiden blood, thus rigorously effused,

Will cry for vengeance at the gates of heaven.”



Place barrels of pitch upon the fatal stake,

That so her torture may be shortened.”



I am with child, ye bloody homicides:

Murder not then the fruit within my womb,

Although ye hale me to a violent death.”


She and the Dauphin have been juggling:

I did imagine what would be her refuge.


Well, go to; we’ll have no bastards live”


You are deceived; my child is none of his:

It was Alencon that enjoy’d my love.


Alencon! that notorious Machiavel!”


…I have deluded you:

Twas neither Charles nor yet the duke I named,

But Reignier, king of Naples, that prevail’d.


A married man! that’s most intolerable.


Why, here’s a girl! I think she knows not well,

There were so many, whom she may accuse.


It’s sign she hath been liberal and free.


And yet, forsooth, she is a virgin pure.”


Is all our travail turn’d to this effect?

After the slaughter of so many peers,

So many captains, gentlemen and soldiers,

That in this quarrel have been overthrown

And sold their bodies for their country’s benefit,

Shall we at last conclude effeminate peace?”


So should I give consent to flatter sin.

You know, my lord, your higness is betroth’d

Unto another lady of esteem:

How shall we then dispense with that contract,

And not deface your honour with reproach?”

Henry is able to enrich his queen

And not seek a queen to make him rich”


Thus Suffolk hath prevail’d; and thus he goes,

As did the youthful Paris once to Greece,

With hope to find the like event in love,

But prosper better than the Trojan did.

Margaret shall now be queen, and rule the king;

But I will rule both her, the king and realm.


End of PART I


(Reads) ‘Imprimis, it is agreed between the French

king Charles, and William de la Pole, Marquess of

Suffolk, ambassador for Henry King of England, that

the said Henry shall espouse the Lady Margaret,

daughter unto Reignier King of Naples, Sicilia and

Jerusalem, and crown her Queen of England ere the

30th of May next ensuing. Item, that the duchy

of Anjou and the county of Maine shall be released

and delivered to the king her father’–



(Reads) ‘…and she sent over of the King of England’s own

proper cost and charges, without having any dowry.’”



O peers of England, shameful is this league!

Fatal this marriage, cancelling your fame,

Blotting your names from books of memory,

Razing the characters of your renown,

Defacing monuments of conquer’d France,

Undoing all, as all had never been!”



Anjou and Maine! myself did win them both;

Those provinces these arms of mine did conquer:

And are the cities, that I got with wounds,

Delivered up again with peaceful words?

Mort Dieu!”



I never read but England’s kings have had

Large sums of gold and dowries with their wives:

And our King Henry gives away his own,

To match with her that brings no vantages.”


My Lord of Winchester, I know your mind;

Its not my speeches that you do mislike,

But ‘tis my presence that doth trouble ye.

Rancour will out: proud prelate, in thy face

I see thy fury: if I longer stay,

We shall begin our ancient bickerings.

Lordings, farewell; and say, when I am gone,

I prophesied France will be lost ere long.”


Unto the main! O father, Maine is lost;

That Maine which by main force Warwick did win,

And would have kept so long as breath did last!

Main chance, father, you meant; but I meant Maine,

Which I will win from France, or else be slain”



The peers agreed, and Henry was well pleased

To change 2 dukedoms for a duke’s fair daughter.

I cannot blame them all: what is’t to them?

Tis thine they give away, and not their own.

Pirates may make cheap pennyworths of their pillage

And purchase friends and give to courtezans,

Still revelling like lords till all be gone


So York must sit and fret and bite his tongue,

While his own lands are bargain’d for and sold.


A day will come when York shall claim his own


And, when I spy advantage, claim the crown,

For that’s the golden mark I seek to hit:

Nor shall proud Lancaster (…) wear the diadem upon his head,

Whose church-like humours fits not for a crown.

(…) Then will I raise aloft the milk-white rose,

With whose sweet smell the air shall be perfumed”


What say’st thou, man? hast thou as yet conferr’d

With Margery Jourdain, the cunning witch,

With Roger Bolingbroke, the conjurer?

And will they undertake to do me good?”


Not all these lords do vex me half so much

As that proud dame, the lord protector’s wife.

She sweeps it through the court with troops of ladies,

More like an empress than Duke Humphrey’s wife:

Strangers in court do take her for the queen:

She bears a duke’s revenues on her back,

And in her heart she scorns our poverty”


Madam, the king is old enough himself

To give his censure: these are no women’s matters.


If he be old enough, what needs your grace

To be protector of his excellence?


Madam, I am protector of the realm;

And, at his pleasure, will resign my place.”


Thy sumptuous buildings and thy wife’s attire

Have cost a mass of public treasury.”



Could I come near your beauty with my nails,

I’d set my ten commandments in your face.”



Edward III, my lords, had 7 sons:

The first, Edward the Black Prince, Prince of Wales;

The second, William of Hatfield, and the third,

Lionel Duke of Clarence: next to whom

Was John of Gaunt, the Duke of Lancaster;

The fifth was Edmund Langley, Duke of York;

The sixth was Thomas of Woodstock, Duke of Gloucester;

William of Windsor was the seventh and last.

Edward the Black Prince died before his father

And left behind him Richard, his only son,

Who after Edward III’s death reign’d as king;

Till Henry Bolingbroke, Duke of Lancaster,

The eldest son and heir of John of Gaunt,

Crown’d by the name of Henry IV,

Seized on the realm, deposed the rightful king,

Sent his poor queen to France, from whence she came,

And him to Pomfret; where, as all you know,

Harmless Richard was murder’d traitorously.”


Father, the duke hath told the truth:

Thus got the house of Lancaster the crown.”


But William of Hatfield died without an heir.


The third son, Duke of Clarence, from whose line

I claimed the crown, had issue, Philippe, a daughter,

Who married Edmund Mortimer, Earl of March:

Edmund had issue, Roger Earl of March;

Roger had issue, Edmund, Anne and Eleanor.”


This Edmund, in the reign of Bolingbroke,

As I have read, laid claim unto the crown;

And, but for Owen Glendower, had been king,

Who kept him in captivity till he died.

But to the rest.


His eldest sister, Anne,

My mother, being heir unto the crown

Married Richard Earl of Cambridge; who was son

To Edmund Langley, Edward III’s fifth son.

By her I claim the kingdom: she was heir

To Roger Earl of March, who was the son

Of Edmund Mortimer, who married Philippe,

Sole daughter unto Lionel Duke of Clarence:

So, if the issue of the elder son

Succeed before the younger, I am king.


What plain proceeding is more plain than this?

Henry doth claim the crown from John of Gaunt,

The fourth son; York claims it from the third.

Till Lionel’s issue fails, his should not reign:

It fails not yet, but flourishes in thee

And in thy sons, fair slips of such a stock.

Then, father Salisbury, kneel we together;

And in this private plot be we the first

That shall salute our rightful sovereign

With honour of his birthright to the crown.


Long live our sovereign Richard, England’s king!


We thank you, lords. But I am not your king

Till I be crown’d and that my sword be stain’d

With heart-blood of the house of Lancaster;

And that’s not suddenly to be perform’d,

But with advice and silent secrecy.”



Small curs are not regarded when thet grin;

But great men tremble when the lion roars;

And Humphrey is no little man in England.

First note that he is near you in descent”



Smooth runs the water where the brook is deep;

And in his simple show he harbours treason.

The fox barks not when he would steal the lamb.”


Great lords, from Ireland am I come amain,

To signify that rebels there are up

And put the Englishman unto the sword:

Send succors, lords, and stop the rage betime,

Before the wound do grow uncurable;

For, being green, there is great hope of help.”

Show me one scar character’d on thy skin:

Men’s flesh preserved so whole do seldom win.”



My brain more busy than the labouring spider

Weaves tedious snared to trap mine enemies.”


It is reported, mighty sovereign,

That good Duke Humphrey traitorously is murder’d

By Suffolk and the Cardinal Beaufort’s means.

The commons, like an angry hive of bees

That want their leader, scatter up and down

And care not who they sting in his revenge.

Myself have calm’d their spleenful mutiny,

Until they hear the order of his death.”

Cardinal Beaufort is at point of death;

For suddenly a grievous sickness took him,

That makes him gasp and stare and catch the air,

Blaspheming God and cursing men on earth.”


…there shall be no money;

all shall eat and drink on my score (…)


The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.”


…he can speak French; and therefore he is a traitor.”


Herald, away; and throughout every town

Proclaim them traitors that are up with Cade;

That those which fly before the battle ends

May, even in their wives’ and children’s sight,

Be hang’d up for example at their doors:

And you that be the king’s friends, follow me.”

All scholars, lawyers, courtiers, gentlemen,

They call false caterpillars, and intend their death.”

Away, burn all the records of the realm: my mouth shall be the parliament of England.”

Thou hast most traitorouslyy corrupted the youth of the realm in erecting a grammar school (…) It will be proved to thy face that thou hast men about thee usually talk of a noun and a verb, and such abominable words as no Christian ear can endure to hear.”

Away with him, away with him! he speaks Latin.”



Was never subject long’d to be a king

As I do long and wish to be a subject.”

Thus stands my state, ‘twixt Cade and York distress’d.

Like to a ship that, having ‘scaped a tempest,

Is straightway calm’d and boarded with a pirate:

But now is Cade drivan back, his men dispersed;

And now is York in arms to second him.”

The head of Cade! Great God, how just art Thou!

O, let me view his visage, being dead,

That living wrought such exceeding trouble.

Tell me, my friend, art thou the man thant slew him?”



King did I call thee? no, thou art not king,

Not fit to govern and rule multitudes,

Which darest not, no, nor canst not rule a traitor.

That head of thine doth not become a crown;

Thy hand is made to grasp a palmer’s staff,

And not to grace an awful princely sceptre.

That gold must round engirt these brows of mine,

Whose smile and frown, like to Achilles’ spear,

Is able with the change to kill and cure.

Here is a hand to hold a sceptre up

And with the same to act controlling laws.

Give place: by heaven, thou shalt rule no more

O’er him whom heaven created for thy ruler.”


My lord, I have consider’d with myself

The title of this most renowned duke;

And in my conscience do repute his grace

The rightful heir to England’s royal seat.”


(…) York not our old men spares;

No more will I their babes: tears virginal

Shall be to me even as the dew to fire,

And beauty that the tyrant oft reclaims

Shall to my flaming wrath be oil and flax.

Henceforth I will not have to do with pity:

Meet I an infant of the house of York,

Into as many gobbets will I cut it

As wild Medea young Absyrtus did:

In cruelty will I seek out my fame.”

Priests pray for enemies, but princes kill.”



Saint Alban’s battle won by famous York

Shall be eternized in all age to come.

Sound drums and trumpets, and to London all:

And more such days as these to us befall!



Patience is for poltroons, such as he:

He durst not sit there, had your father lived.

My gracious lord, here in the parliament

Let us assail the family of York.


Well hast thou spoken, cousin: be it so.


Ah, know you not the city favours them,

And they have troops of soldiers at their beck?”



Cousin of Exeter, frowns, words and threats

Shall be the war that Henry means to use.

Thou factious Duke of York, descend my throne,

and kneel for grace and mercy at my feet;

I am thy sovereign.


I am thine.


For shame, come down, he made thee Duke of York.


Twas my inheritance, as the earldom was.


Thy father was a traitor to the crown.


Exeter, thou art a traitor to the crown

In following this usurping Henry.


Whom should he follow but his natural king?


True, Clifford; and that’s Richard Duke of York.


And shall I stand, and thou sit in my throne?


It must and shall be so: content thyself.


Be Duke of Lancaster; let him be king.


He is both king and Duke of Lancaster;

And that the Lord of Westmoreland shall maintain.


And Warwick shall disprove it. Your forget

That we are those which chased you from the field

And slew your fathers, and with colours spread

March’d through the city to the palace gates.


Yes, Warwick, I remember it to my grief;

And, by his soul, thou and thy house shall rue it.


Plantagenet, of thee and these thy sons,

Thy kinsman and thy friends, I’ll have more lives

Than drops of blood were in my father’s veins.


Urge it no more; lest that, instead of words,

I send thee, Warwick, such messenger

As shall revenge his death before I stir.


Poor Clifford! how I scorn his worthless threats!


Will you we show our title to the crow?

If not, our swords shall plead it in the field.


What title hast thou, traitor, to the crown?

Thy father was, as thou art, Duke of York;

Thy grandfather, Roger Mortimer, Earl of March:

I am the son of Henry V,

Who made the Dauphin and the French to stoop

And seidez upon their towns and provinces.


Talk not of France, sith thou hast lost it all.


The lord protector lost it, and not I:

When I was crown’d I was but 9 months old.


You are old enough now, and yet, methinks, you lose.

Father, tear the crown from the usurper’s head.


Sweet father, do so; set it on your head.


Good brother, as thou lovest and honourest arms,

Let’s fight it out and not stand caviling thus.


Sound drums and trumpets, and the king will fly.


Sons, peace!


Peace, thou! and give King Henry leave to speak.


Plantagenet shall speak first: hear him, lords;

And be you silent and attentive too,

For he that interrupts him shall not live.


Think’st thou that I will leave my kingly throne,

Wherein my grandsire and my father sat?

No: first shall war unpeople this my realm;

Ay, and their colours, often borne in France,

And now in England to out heart’s great sorrow,

Shall be my winding-sheet. Why faint you, lords?

My title’s good, and better far than his.


Prove it, Henry, and thou shalt be king.


Henry IV by conquest got the crown.


Twas by rebellion against the king.


(Aside) I know not what to say; my title’s weak.—

Tell me, may not a king adopt an heir?


What then?


An if he may, then am I lawful king;

For Richard, in the view of many lords,

Resign’d the crown to Henry IV,

Whose heir my father was, and I am his.


He rose against him, being his sovereign,

And made him to resign his crown perforce.


Suppose, my lords, he did it unconstrain’d,

Think you ‘itwere prejudicial to his crown?


No; for he could not so resign his crown

Nut that the next heir should succeed and reign.


Art thou against us, Duke of Exeter?


His is the right, and therefore pardon me.


Why whisper you, my lords, and answer not?


My conscience tells me he is lawful king.


(Aside) All will revolt from me, and turn to him.


Plantagenet, for all the claim thou lay’st,

Think not that Henry shall be so deposed.


Deposed he shall be, in despite of all.


Thou art deceived: ‘tis not thy southern power,

Of Essex, Norfolk, Suffolk, nor of Kent,

Which makes thee thus presumptuous and proud,

Can set the duke up in despite of me.


King Henry, be thy title right or wrong,

Lord Clifford vows to fight in thy defence:

May that ground gape and swallow me alive,

Where I shall kneel to him that slew my father!


O Clifford, how thy words revive my heart!


Henry of Lancaster, resign thy crown.

What mutter you, or what conspire you, lords?


Do right unto this princely Duke of York,

Or I will fill the house with armed men,

And over the chair of state, where now he sits,

Write up his title with usurping blood.

He stamps with his foot and the soldiers show themselves


My Lord of Warwick, hear me but one word:

Let me for this my life-time reign as king.


Confirm the crown to me and to mine heirs,

And thou shalt reign in quiet while thou livest.


I am content: Richard Plantagenet,

Enjoy the kingdom after my decease.


What wrong is this unto the prince your son!


What good is this to England and himself!


Base, fearful and despairing Henry!


How hast thou injured both thyself and us!


I cannot stay to hear these articles.


Nor I.


Come, cousin, let us tell the queen these news.


Farewell, faint-hearted and degenerate king,

In whose cold blood no spark of honour bides.


Be thou a prey unto the house of York,

And die in bands for this unmanly deed!


In dreadful war mayst thou be overcome,

Or live in peace abandon’d and despised!



Turn this way, Henry, and regard them not.


They seek revenge and therefore will not yield.


Ah, Exeter!


Why should you sigh, my lord?


Not for myself, Lord Warwick, but my son,

Whom I unnaturally shall disinherit,

But be it as it may: I here entail

The crown to thee and to thine heirs for ever;

Conditionally, that here thou take an oath

To cease this civil war, and, whilst I live,

To honours me as thy king and sovereign,

And neither by treason nor hostility

To seek to put me down and reign thyself.


This oath I willingly take and will perform.


Long live King Henry! Plantagenet embrace him.


And long live thou and these thy forward sons!


Now York and Lancaster are reconciled.


Accursed be he that seeks to make them foes!

Sennet. Here they come down


Farewell, my gracious lord; I’ll to my castle.


And I’ll keep London with my soldiers.


And I to Norfolk with my followers.


And I unto the sea from whence I came.



And I, with grief and sorrow, to the court.



Here comes the queen, whose looks bewray her anger:

I’ll steal away.


Exeter, so will I.


Nay, go not from me; I will follow thee.


Be patient, gentle queen, and I will stay.


Who can be patient in such extremes?

Ah, wretched man! would I had died a maid

And never seen thee, never borne thee son,

Seeing thou hast proved so unnatural a father

Hath he deserved to lose his birthright thus?

Hadst thou but loved him half so well as I,

Or felt that pain which I did for him once,

Or nourish’d him as I did with my blood,

Thou wouldst have left thy dearest heart-blood there,

Rather than have that savage duke thine heir

And disinherited thine only son.


Father, you cannot disinherit me:

If you be king, why should not I succeed?


Pardon me, Margaret; pardon me, sweet son:

The Earl of Warwick and the duke enforced me.


Enforced thee! art thou king, and wilt be forced?

I shame to hear thee speak. Ah, timorous wretch!

Thou hast undone thyself, thy son and me;

And given unto the house of York such head

As thou shalt reign but by their sufferance.

To entail him and his heirs unto the crown,

What is it, but to make thy sepulchre

And creep into it far before thy time?

Warwick is chancellor and the lord of Calais;

Stern Falconbridge commands the narrow seas;

The duke is made protector of the realm;

And yet shalt thou be safe? such safety finds

The trembling lamb environed with wolves.

Had I been there, which am a silly woman,

The soldiers should have toss’d me on their pikes

Before I would have granted to that act.

But thou preferr’st thy life before thine honour:

And seeing thou dost, I here divorce myself

Both from thy table, Henry, and thy bed,

Until that act of parliament be repeal’d

Whereby my son is disinherited.

The northern lords that have forsworn thy colours

Will follow mine, if once they see them spread;

And spread they shall be, to thy foul disgrace

And utter ruin of the house of York.

Thus do I leave thee. Come, son, let’s away;

Our army is ready; come, we’ll after them.”



By giving the house of Lancaster leave to breathe,

It will outrun you, father, in the end.


I took an oath that he sould quietly reign.


But for a kingdom any oath may be broken:

I would break a thousand oaths to reign one year.


(…) And, father, do but think

How sweet a thing it is to wear a crown;

Within whose circuit is Elysium

And all that poets feign of bliss and joy.

Why do we finger thus? I cannot rest

Until the white rose that I wear be dyed

Even in the lukewarm blood of Henry’s heart.”


The queen with all the noerthern earls and lords

Intend here to besiege you in your castle

She is hard by with 20,000 men



She shall not need, we’ll meet her in the field.


What, with 5,000 men?


Ay, with 500, father, for a need:

A woman’s general; what should we fear?

A march afar off



5 men to 20! Though the odds be great,

I doubt not, uncle, of our victory.

Many a battle have I won in France,

When as the enemy hath been 10 to 1:

Why should I not now have the like success?”

Thy father slew my father. Therefore, die.

Stabs him.

Plantagenet! I come, Plantagenet!

And this thy son’s blood cleaving to my blade

Shall rust upon my weapon, till thy blood,

Congeal’d with this, do make me wipe off both.



My sons, God knows what hath bechanced them:

But this I know, they have demean’d themselves

Like men born to renown by life or death.

Three times did Richard make a lane to me.

And thrice cried <Courage, father! fight it out!>

And full as oft came Edward to my side,

With purple falchion, painted to the hilt

In blood of those that had encounter’d him:

And when the hardiest warriors did retire,

Richard cried <Charge! And give no foot of ground!>

And cried <A crown, or else a glorious tomb!

A scepter, or an earthly sepulchre!>

With this, we charged again: but, out, alas!

We bodged again; as I have seen a swan

With bootless labour swim against the tide

And spend her strength with over-matching waves.”


Yield to our mercy, proud Plantagenet.



My ashes, as the phoenix, may bring forth

A bird that will revenge upon you all:

And in that hope I throw mine eyes to heaven,

Scorning whate’er you can afflict me with.

Why come you not? what! multitudes, and fear?”


Hold, valiant Clifford! for a thousand causes

I would prolong awhile the traitor’s life.

Wrath makes him deaf: speak thou, Northumberland.”

What! was it you that would be England’s king?

Was’t you that revell’d in our parliament,

And made a preachment of your high descent?

Where are your mess of sons to back you now?

The wanton Edward, and the lusty George?

And where’s that valiant crook-back prodigy,

Dicky your boy, that with his grumbling voice

Was wont to cheer his dad in mutinies?

Or, with the rest, where is your darling Rutland?

Look, York: I stain’d this napkin with the blood

That valiant Clifford, with his rapier’s point,

Made issue from the bosom of the boy;

And if thine eyes can water for his death,

I give thee this to dry thy cheeks withal.

Alas poor York! But that I hate thee deadly,

I should lament thy miserable state.

I prithee, grieve, to make me merry, York.

What, hath thy fiery heart so parch’d thine entrails

That not a tear can fall for Rutland’s death?

Why art thou patient, man? thou shouldst be mad;

And I, to make thee mad, do mock thee thus.

Thou wouldst be fee’d, I see, to make me sport:

York cannot speak, unless he wear a crown.

A crown for York! and, lords, bow low to him:

Hold you his hands, whilst I do set it on.

Putting a paper crown on his head

Ay, marry, sir, now looks he like a king!

Ay, this is he that took King Henry’s chair,

And this is he was hid adopted heir.

But how is that great Plantagenet

Is crown’d so soon, and broke his solemn oath?

As I bethink me, you should not be king

Till our King Henry had shook hands with death.

And will you pale your head in Henry’s glory,

And rob his temples of the diadem,

Now in his life, against your holy oath?

O, ‘tis a fault too too unpardonable!

Off with the crown, and with the crown his head;

And, whilst we breathe, take time to do him dead.


That is my office, for my father’s sake.


Nay, stay; lets hear the orisons he makes.


She-wolf of France, but worse than wolves of France,

Whose tongue more poisons than the adder’s tooth!

How ill-beseeming is it in thy sex

To triumph, like an Amazonian trull,

Upon their woes whom fortune captivates!

But that thy face is, vizard-like, unchanging,

Made impudent with use of evil deeds,

I would assay, proud queen, to make thee blush.

To tell thee whence thou camest, of whom derived,

Were shame enough to shame thee, wer thou not shameless.

Thy father bears the type of King of Naples,

Of both the Sicils and Jerusalem,

Yet not so wealthy as an English yeoman.

Hath that poor monarch taught thee to insult?

It needs not, nor it boots thee not, proud queen,

Unless the adage must be verified,

That beggars mounted run their horse to death.

Tis beauty that doth oft make women proud;

But, God he knows, thy share thereof is small:

Tis virtue that doth make them most admired;

The contrary doth make thee wonder’d at:

Tis government that makes them seem divine;

The want thereof makes thee abominable:

Thou art as opposite to every good

As the Antipodes are unto us,

Or as the south to the septentrion,

O tiger’s heart wrapt in a woman’s hide!

How couldst thou drain the life-blood of the child,

To bid the father wipe his eyes withal,

And yet be seen to bear a woman’s face?

Women are soft, mild, pitiful and flexible;

Thou stern, obdurate, flinty, rough, remorseless.

Bids’t thou me rage? why, now thou hast thy wish:

For raging wind blows up incessant showers,

And when the rage allays, the rain begins.

These tears are my sweet Rutland’s obsequies:

And every drop cries vengeance for his death,

Gaint thee, fell Clifford, and thee, false



Had he been slaughter-man to all my kin,

I should not for my life but weep with him.

To see how inly sorrow gripes his soul.


What, weeping-ripe, my Lord Northumberland?

Think but upon the wrong he did us all,

And that will quickly dry thy melting tears.”


Stabbing him


Stabbing him


Open Thy gate of mercy, gracious God!

My soul flies through these wounds to seek out Thee.




And after many scorns, many foul taunts,

They took his head, and on the gates of York

They set the same; and there it doth remain,

The saddest spectacle that e’er I view’d.”



To weep is to make less the depth of grief:

Tears then for babes; blows and revenge for me

Richard, I bear thy name; I’ll venge thy death,

Or die renowned by attempting it.”



Their power, I think, is 30,000 strong:

Now, if the help of Norfolk and myself,

With all the friends that thou, brave Earl of March,

Amongst the loving Welshmen canst procure,

Will but amount to 25,000,

Why, Via! to London will we march amain,

And once again bestride our foaming steeds,

And once again cry <Charge upon our foes!>

But never once again turn back and fly.”

King Edward, valiant Richard, Montague,

Stay we no longer, dreaming of renown,

But sound the trumpets, and about our task.”



Thou, being a king, blest with a goodly son,

Didst yield consent to disinherit him,

Which argued thee a most unloving father.

Unreasonable creatures feed their young;

And though man’s face be fearful to their eyes,

Yet, in protection of their tender ones,

Who hath not seen them, even with those wings

Which sometime they have used with fearful flight,

Make war with him that climb’d unto their nest,

Offer their own lives in their young’s defence?

For shame, my liege, make them your precedent!

Were it not pity that godly boy

Should lose his birthright by his father’s fault,

And long hereafter say unto his child,

<What my great-grandfather and his grandsire got

My careless father fondly gave away>?

Ah, what a shame were this! Look on the boy;

And let his manly face, which promiseth

Successful fortune, steel thy melting heart

To hold thine own and leave thine own with him.”



Ah, cousin York! would thy best friends did know

How it doth grieve me that thy head is here!”


I would your highness would depart the field:

The queen hath best success when you are absent.”



Northumberland, I hold thee reverently.

Break off the parley; for scarce I can refrain

The execution of my big-swoln heart

Upon that Clifford, that cruel child-killer.


I slew thy father, call’st thou him a child?


Ay, like a dastard and a treacherous coward,

As thou didst kill our tender brother Rutland;

But ere sunset I’ll make thee curse the deed.”



O God! Methinks it were a happy life,

To be no better than a omely swain;

To sit upon a hill, as I do now,

To carve out dials quaintly, point by point,

Thereby to see the minutes how they run,

How many make the hour full complete;

How many hours bring about the day;

How many days will finish up the year.

How many years a mortal man may live.

When this is known, then to divide the times:

So many hours must I tend my flock;

So many hours must I take my rest;

So many hours must Iontemplate;

So many hours must I sport myself;

So many days my ewes have been with young;

So many weeks ere the poor fools will ean:

So many years ere I shall shear the fleece:

So minutes, hours, days, months, and years,

Pass’d over to the end they were created,

Would bring white hairs unto a quiet grave.

Ah, what a life were this! how sweet! how lovely!

Gives me not the hawthorn-bush a sweeter shade

To shepherds looking on their silly sheep,

Than doth a rich embroider’d canopy

To kings that fear their subjects’ treachery?

O, yes, it doth; a thousand-fold it doth.”

O boy, thy father gave thee life too soon,

And hath nereft thee of thy life too late!”



The red rose and the white rose are on his face,

The fatal colours of our striving houses:

The one his purple blood right well resembles;

The other his pale cheeks, methinks, presenteth:

Wither one rose, and let the other flourish;

If you contend, a thousand lives must wither.

A son

How will my mother for a father’s death

Take on with me and ne’er be satisfied!


How will my wife for slaughter of my son

Shed seas of tears and ne’er be satisfied!


How will the country for these woful chances

Misthink the king and not be satisfied!”



And, Henry, hadst thou sway’d as kings should do,

Or as thy father and his father did,

Giving no ground unto the house of York,

They never then had sprung like summer flies;
I and 10,000 in this luckless realm
Had left no mourning widows for our death;
And thou this day hadst kept thy chair in peace.”


I think his understanding is bereft.
Speak, Clifford, dost thou know who speaks to thee?
Dark cloudy death o’ershades his beams of life,
And he nor sees nor hears us what we say.”


Ay, but he’s dead: off with the traitor’s head,
And rear it in the place your father’s stands.
And now to London with triumphant march,
There to be crowned England’s royal king:
From whence shall Warwick cut the sea to France,
And ask the Lady Bona for thy queen:
So shalt thou sinew both these lands together;
And, having France thy friend, thou shalt not dread
The scatter’d foe that hopes to rise again;
For though they cannot greatly sting to hurt,
Yet look to have them buzz to offend thine ears.
First will I see the coronation;
And then to Brittany I’ll cross the sea,
To effect this marriage, so it please my lord.”

[Soon to be coronated] EDWARD


Richard, I will create thee Duke of Gloucester,
And George, of Clarence: Warwick, as ourself,
Shall do and undo as him pleaseth best.”



No, Harry, Harry, ‘tis no land of thine;
Thy place is fill’d, thy sceptre wrung from thee,
Thy balm wash’d off wherewith thou wast anointed:
No bending knee will call thee Caesar now,
No humble suitors press to speak for right,
No, not a man comes for redress of thee;
For how can I help them, and not myself?”

Let me embrace thee, sour adversity,
For wise men say it is the wisest course.”

Ay, but she’s come to beg, Warwick to give;
She, on his left side, craving aid for Henry,
He, on his right, asking a wife for Edward.
She weeps, and says her Henry is deposed;
He smiles, and says his Edward is install’d;
That she, poor wretch, for grief can speak no more;
Whiles Warwick tells his title, smooths the wrong,
Inferreth arguments of mighty strength,
And in conclusion wins the king from her,
With promise of his sister, and what else,
To strengthen and support King Edward’s place.
O Margaret, thus ‘twill be; and thou, poor soul,
Art then forsaken, as thou went’st forlorn!”

And men may talk of kings, and why not I?”

Second Keeper

But, if thou be a king, where is thy crown?


My crown is in my heart, not on my head;
Not decked with diamonds and Indian stones,
Nor to be seen: my crown is called content:
A crown it is that seldom kings enjoy.

Second Keeper

Well, if you be a king crown’d with content,
Your crown content and you must be contented
To go along with us; for as we think,
You are the king King Edward hath deposed;
And we his subjects sworn in all allegiance
Will apprehend you as his enemy.


But did you never swear, and break an oath?”


Where did you dwell when I was King of England?

Second Keeper

Here in this country, where we now remain.


I was anointed king at nine months old;
My father and my grandfather were kings,
And you were sworn true subjects unto me:
And tell me, then, have you not broke your oaths?”

Ah, simple men, you know not what you swear!
Look, as I blow this feather from my face,
And as the air blows it to me again,
Obeying with my wind when I do blow,
And yielding to another when it blows,
Commanded always by the greater gust;
Such is the lightness of you common men.
But do not break your oaths; for of that sin
My mild entreaty shall not make you guilty.
Go where you will, the king shall be commanded;
And be you kings, command, and I’ll obey.”

In God’s name, lead; your king’s name be obey’d:
And what God will, that let your king perform;
And what he will, I humbly yield unto.


GLOUCESTER [o novo título de Richard, ainda não Terceiro]

Your highness shall do well to grant her suit;
It were dishonour to deny it her.”


Ay, but thou canst do what I mean to ask.


Why, then I will do what your grace commands.


Why stops my lord, shall I not hear my task?


An easy task; ‘tis but to love a king.


That’s soon perform’d, because I am a subject.”


Why, then, thy husband’s lands I freely give thee.


I take my leave with many thousand thanks.”


Ay, but, I fear me, in another sense.
What love, think’st thou, I sue so much to get?


My love till death, my humble thanks, my prayers;
That love which virtue begs and virtue grants.


No, by my troth, I did not mean such love.


Why, then you mean not as I thought you did.


But now you partly may perceive my mind.


My mind will never grant what I perceive
Your highness aims at, if I aim aright.


To tell thee plain, I aim to lie with thee.


To tell you plain, I had rather lie in prison.


Why, then thou shalt not have thy husband’s lands.


Why, then mine honesty shall be my dower;
For by that loss I will not purchase them.


Therein thou wrong’st thy children mightily.


Herein your highness wrongs both them and me.
But, mighty lord, this merry inclination
Accords not with the sadness of my suit:
Please you dismiss me either with ‘ay’ or ‘no.’


Ay, if thou wilt say ‘ay’ to my request;
No if thou dost say ‘no’ to my demand.


Then, no, my lord. My suit is at an end.”


[Aside] Her looks do argue her replete with modesty;
Her words do show her wit incomparable;
All her perfections challenge sovereignty:
One way or other, she is for a king;
And she shall be my love, or else my queen.–
Say that King Edward take thee for his queen?


Tis better said than done, my gracious lord:
I am a subject fit to jest withal,
But far unfit to be a sovereign.”

I know I am too mean to be your queen,
And yet too good to be your concubine.”

No more than when my daughters call thee mother.
Thou art a widow, and thou hast some children;
And, by God’s mother, I, being but a bachelor,
Have other some: why, ‘tis a happy thing
To be the father unto many sons.
Answer no more, for thou shalt be my queen.”

Enter a Nobleman


My gracious lord, Henry your foe is taken,
And brought your prisoner to your palace gate.


See that he be convey’d unto the Tower:
And go we, brothers, to the man that took him,
To question of his apprehension.
Widow, go you along. Lords, use her honourably.

Exeunt all but GLOUCESTER



And yet, between my soul’s desire and me–
The lustful Edward’s title buried–
Is Clarence, Henry, and his son young Edward,
And all the unlook’d for issue of their bodies


Why, then, I do but dream on sovereignty;
Like one that stands upon a promontory,
And spies a far-off shore where he would tread,
Wishing his foot were equal with his eye,
And chides the sea that sunders him from thence,
Saying, he’ll lade it dry to have his way:
So do I wish the crown, being so far off;
And so I chide the means that keeps me from it;
And so I say, I’ll cut the causes off,
Flattering me with impossibilities.
My eye’s too quick, my heart o’erweens too much,
Unless my hand and strength could equal them.
Well, say there is no kingdom then for Richard;
What other pleasure can the world afford?
I’ll make my heaven in a lady’s lap,
And deck my body in gay ornaments,
And witch sweet ladies with my words and looks.
O miserable thought! and more unlikely
Than to accomplish twenty golden crowns!
Why, love forswore me in my mother’s womb:
And, for I should not deal in her soft laws,
She did corrupt frail nature with some bribe,
To shrink mine arm up like a wither’d shrub;
To make an envious mountain on my back,
Where sits deformity to mock my body;
To shape my legs of an unequal size;
To disproportion me in every part,
Like to a chaos, or an unlick’d bear-whelp
That carries no impression like the dam.
And am I then a man to be beloved?
O monstrous fault, to harbour such a thought!
Then, since this earth affords no joy to me,
But to command, to cheque, to o’erbear such
As are of better person than myself,
I’ll make my heaven to dream upon the crown,
And, whiles I live, to account this world but hell,
Until my mis-shaped trunk that bears this head
Be round impaled with a glorious crown.
And yet I know not how to get the crown,
For many lives stand between me and home:
And I,–like one lost in a thorny wood,
That rends the thorns and is rent with the thorns,
Seeking a way and straying from the way;
Not knowing how to find the open air,
But toiling desperately to find it out,–
Torment myself to catch the English crown:
And from that torment I will free myself,
Or hew my way out with a bloody axe.
Why, I can smile, and murder whiles I smile,
And cry ‘Content’ to that which grieves my heart,
And wet my cheeks with artificial tears,
And frame my face to all occasions.
I’ll drown more sailors than the mermaid shall;
I’ll slay more gazers than the basilisk;
I’ll play the orator as well as Nestor,
Deceive more slily than Ulysses could,
And, like a Sinon, take another Troy.
I can add colours to the chameleon,
Change shapes with Proteus for advantages,
And set the murderous Machiavel to school.
Can I do this, and cannot get a crown?
Tut, were it farther off, I’ll pluck it down.



Be plain, Queen Margaret, and tell thy grief;
It shall be eased, if France can yield relief.”

Scotland hath will to help, but cannot help;
Our people and our peers are both misled,
Our treasures seized, our soldiers put to flight,
And, as thou seest, ourselves in heavy plight.”


From worthy Edward, King of Albion,
My lord and sovereign, and thy vowed friend,
I come, in kindness and unfeigned love,
First, to do greetings to thy royal person;
And then to crave a league of amity;
And lastly, to confirm that amity
With a nuptial knot, if thou vouchsafe to grant
That virtuous Lady Bona, thy fair sister,
To England’s king in lawful marriage.


[Aside] If that go forward, Henry’s hope is done.”


King Lewis and Lady Bona, hear me speak,
Before you answer Warwick. His demand
Springs not from Edward’s well-meant honest love,
But from deceit bred by necessity;
For how can tyrants safely govern home,
Unless abroad they purchase great alliance?
To prove him tyrant this reason may suffice,
That Henry liveth still: but were he dead,
Yet here Prince Edward stands, King Henry’s son.
Look, therefore, Lewis, that by this league and marriage
Thou draw not on thy danger and dishonour;
For though usurpers sway the rule awhile,
Yet heavens are just, and time suppresseth wrongs.”


Why, Warwick, canst thou speak against thy liege,
Whom thou obeyed’st 36 years,
And not bewray thy treason with a blush?


Can Oxford, that did ever fence the right,
Now buckler falsehood with a pedigree?
For shame! leave Henry, and call Edward king.”

No, Warwick, no; while life upholds this arm,
This arm upholds the house of Lancaster.


And I the house of York.”


Then, Warwick, thus: our sister shall be Edward’s;
And now forthwith shall articles be drawn
Touching the jointure that your king must make,
Which with her dowry shall be counterpoised.
Draw near, Queen Margaret, and be a witness
That Bona shall be wife to the English king.”


Henry now lives in Scotland at his ease,
Where having nothing, nothing can he lose.
And as for you yourself, our quondam queen,
You have a father able to maintain you;
And better ‘twere you troubled him than France.”


What! has your king married the Lady Grey!
And now, to soothe your forgery and his,
Sends me a paper to persuade me patience?
Is this the alliance that he seeks with France?
Dare he presume to scorn us in this manner?


I told your majesty as much before:
This proveth Edward’s love and Warwick’s honesty.


King Lewis, I here protest, in sight of heaven,
And by the hope I have of heavenly bliss,
That I am clear from this misdeed of Edward’s,
No more my king, for he dishonours me,
But most himself, if he could see his shame.
Did I forget that by the house of York
My father came untimely to his death?
Did I let pass the abuse done to my niece?
Did I impale him with the regal crown?
Did I put Henry from his native right?
And am I guerdon’d at the last with shame?
Shame on himself! for my desert is honour:
And to repair my honour lost for him,
I here renounce him and return to Henry.
My noble queen, let former grudges pass,
And henceforth I am thy true servitor:
I will revenge his wrong to Lady Bona,
And replant Henry in his former state.


Warwick, these words have turn’d my hate to love;
And I forgive and quite forget old faults,
And joy that thou becomest King Henry’s friend.”

…if King Lewis vouchsafe to furnish us
With some few bands of chosen soldiers,
I’ll undertake to land them on our coast
And force the tyrant from his seat by war.
‘Tis not his new-made bride shall succor him:
And as for Clarence, as my letters tell me,
He’s very likely now to fall from him,
For matching more for wanton lust than honour,
Or than for strength and safety of our country.”


My quarrel and this English queen’s are one.”


Then, England’s messenger, return in post,
And tell false Edward, thy supposed king,
That Lewis of France is sending over masquers
To revel it with him and his new bride:
Thou seest what’s past, go fear thy king withal.”

Thou and Oxford, with 5,000 men,
Shall cross the seas, and bid false Edward battle;
And, as occasion serves, this noble queen
And prince shall follow with a fresh supply.
Yet, ere thou go, but answer me one doubt,
What pledge have we of thy firm loyalty?”


Why stay we now? These soldiers shall be levied,
And thou, Lord Bourbon, our high admiral,
Shalt waft them over with our royal fleet.
I long till Edward fall by war’s mischance,
For mocking marriage with a dame of France.

Exeunt all but WARWICK


I came from Edward as ambassador,
But I return his sworn and mortal foe:
Matter of marriage was the charge he gave me,
But dreadful war shall answer his demand.
Had he none else to make a stale but me?
Then none but I shall turn his jest to sorrow.
I was the chief that raised him to the crown,
And I’ll be chief to bring him down again:
Not that I pity Henry’s misery,
But seek revenge on Edward’s mockery.



Suppose they take offence without a cause,
They are but Lewis and Warwick: I am Edward,
Your king and Warwick’s, and must have my will.


And shall have your will, because our king:
Yet hasty marriage seldom proveth well.


Yea, brother Richard, are you offended too?


Not I:
No, God forbid that I should wish them sever’d
Whom God hath join’d together; ay, and ‘twere pity
To sunder them that yoke so well together.”


Yet, to have join’d with France in such alliance
Would more have strengthen’d this our commonwealth
‘Gainst foreign storms than any home-bred marriage.


Why, knows not Montague that of itself
England is safe, if true within itself?


But the safer when ‘tis back’d with France.


Tis better using France than trusting France:
Let us be back’d with God and with the seas
Which He hath given for fence impregnable,
And with their helps only defend ourselves;
In them and in ourselves our safety lies.”



…your bride you bury brotherhood.”



Nay, whom they shall obey, and love thee too,
Unless they seek for hatred at my hands;
Which if they do, yet will I keep thee safe,
And they shall feel the vengeance of my wrath.


[Aside] I hear, yet say not much, but think the more.”



But say, is Warwick friends with Margaret?


Ay, gracious sovereign; they are so link’d in friendship
That young Prince Edward marries Warwick’s daughter.”


Belike the elder; Clarence will have the younger.
Now, brother king, farewell, and sit you fast,
For I will hence to Warwick’s other daughter;
That, though I want a kingdom, yet in marriage
I may not prove inferior to yourself.
You that love me and Warwick, follow me.

Exit CLARENCE, and SOMERSET follows


[Aside] Not I:
My thoughts aim at a further matter;

I stay not for the love of Edward, but the crown.”



But, ere I go, Hastings and Montague,
Resolve my doubt. You twain, of all the rest,
Are near to Warwick by blood and by alliance:
Tell me if you love Warwick more than me?
If it be so, then both depart to him;
I rather wish you foes than hollow friends:
But if you mind to hold your true obedience,
Give me assurance with some friendly vow,
That I may never have you in suspect.


So God help Montague as he proves true!


And Hastings as he favours Edward’s cause!


Now, brother Richard, will you stand by us?


Ay, in despite of all that shall withstand you.


Why, so! then am I sure of victory.
Now therefore let us hence; and lose no hour,
Till we meet Warwick with his foreign power.



(…) welcome, sweet Clarence; my daughter shall be thine.
And now what rests but, in night’s coverture,
Thy brother being carelessly encamp’d,
His soldiers lurking in the towns about,
And but attended by a simple guard,
We may surprise and take him at our pleasure?
Our scouts have found the adventure very easy:
That as Ulysses and stout Diomede
With sleight and manhood stole to Rhesus’ tents,
And brought from thence the Thracian fatal steeds,
So we, well cover’d with the night’s black mantle,
At unawares may beat down Edward’s guard
And seize himself; I say not, slaughter him,
For I intend but only to surprise him.
You that will follow me to this attempt,
Applaud the name of Henry with your leader.

They all cry, ‘Henry!’”

The drum playing and trumpet sounding, reenter WARWICK, SOMERSET, and the rest, bringing KING EDWARD IV out in his gown, sitting in a chair. RICHARD and HASTINGS fly over the stage”


Ay, but the case is alter’d:
When you disgraced me in my embassade,
Then I degraded you from being king,
And come now to create you Duke of York.
Alas! how should you govern any kingdom,
That know not how to use ambassadors,
Nor how to be contented with one wife,
Nor how to use your brothers brotherly,
Nor how to study for the people’s welfare,
Nor how to shroud yourself from enemies?”


Then, for his mind, be Edward England’s king:

Takes off his crown

But Henry now shall wear the English crown,
And be true king indeed, thou but the shadow.
My Lord of Somerset, at my request,
See that forthwith Duke Edward be convey’d
Unto my brother, Archbishop of York.
When I have fought with Pembroke and his fellows,
I’ll follow you, and tell what answer
Lewis and the Lady Bona send to him.
Now, for a while farewell, good Duke of York.

They lead him out forcibly”


What now remains, my lords, for us to do
But march to London with our soldiers?


Ay, that’s the first thing that we have to do;
To free King Henry from imprisonment
And see him seated in the regal throne.



Come, therefore, let us fly while we may fly:
If Warwick take us we are sure to die.


Your grace hath still been famed for virtuous;
And now may seem as wise as virtuous,
By spying and avoiding fortune’s malice,
For few men rightly temper with the stars:
Yet in this one thing let me blame your grace,
For choosing me when Clarence is in place.


No, Warwick, thou art worthy of the sway,
To whom the heavens in thy nativity
Adjudged an olive branch and laurel crown,
As likely to be blest in peace and war;
And therefore I yield thee my free consent.


And I choose Clarence only for protector.


Warwick and Clarence give me both your hands:
Now join your hands, and with your hands your hearts,
That no dissension hinder government:
I make you both protectors of this land,
While I myself will lead a private life
And in devotion spend my latter days,
To sin’s rebuke and my Creator’s praise.


What answers Clarence to his sovereign’s will?


That he consents, if Warwick yield consent;
For on thy fortune I repose myself.


Why, then, though loath, yet must I be content:
We’ll yoke together, like a double shadow
To Henry’s body, and supply his place;
I mean, in bearing weight of government,
While he enjoys the honour and his ease.
And, Clarence, now then it is more than needful
Forthwith that Edward be pronounced a traitor,
And all his lands and goods be confiscate.


What else? and that succession be determined.


Ay, therein Clarence shall not want his part.


But, with the first of all your chief affairs,
Let me entreat, for I command no more,
That Margaret your queen and my son Edward
Be sent for, to return from France with speed;
For, till I see them here, by doubtful fear
My joy of liberty is half eclipsed.


It shall be done, my sovereign, with all speed.”


[Aside] But when the fox hath once got in his nose,
He’ll soon find means to make the body follow.”


Sound trumpet; Edward shall be here proclaim’d:
Come, fellow-soldier, make thou proclamation.



Edward the Fourth, by the grace of God, king of
England and France, and lord of Ireland, &c.

MONTAGUE [provavelmente erro tipográfico – SIR JOHN MONTGOMERY é o correto]

And whosoe’er gainsays King Edward’s right,
By this I challenge him to single fight.

Throws down his gauntlet


Long live Edward the Fourth!”



I have not been desirous of their wealth,
Nor much oppress’d them with great subsidies.
Nor forward of revenge, though they much err’d:
Then why should they love Edward more than me?
No, Exeter, these graces challenge grace:
And when the lion fawns upon the lamb,
The lamb will never cease to follow him.”


Now, Warwick, wilt thou ope the city gates,
Speak gentle words and humbly bend thy knee,
Call Edward king and at his hands beg mercy?
And he shall pardon thee these outrages.


Nay, rather, wilt thou draw thy forces hence,
Confess who set thee up and pluck’d thee own,
Call Warwick patron and be penitent?
And thou shalt still remain the Duke of York.”


Come, Warwick, take the time; kneel down, kneel down:
Nay, when? strike now, or else the iron cools.


I had rather chop this hand off at a blow,
And with the other fling it at thy face,
Than bear so low a sail, to strike to thee.”


Two of thy name, both Dukes of Somerset,
Have sold their lives unto the house of York;
And thou shalt be the third if this sword hold.”


Father of Warwick, know you what this means?

Taking his red rose out of his hat

Look here, I throw my infamy at thee
I will not ruinate my father’s house,
Who gave his blood to lime the stones together,
And set up Lancaster.
Why, trow’st thou, Warwick,
That Clarence is so harsh, so blunt, unnatural,
To bend the fatal instruments of war
Against his brother and his lawful king?
Perhaps thou wilt object my holy oath:
To keep that oath were more impiety
Than Jephthah’s, when he sacrificed his daughter.
I am so sorry for my trespass made
That, to deserve well at my brother’s hands,
I here proclaim myself thy mortal foe,
With resolution, wheresoe’er I meet thee–
As I will meet thee, if thou stir abroad–
To plague thee for thy foul misleading me.
And so, proud-hearted Warwick, I defy thee,
And to my brother turn my blushing cheeks.
Pardon me, Edward, I will make amends:
And, Richard, do not frown upon my faults,
For I will henceforth be no more unconstant.”


So, lie thou there: die thou, and die our fear;
For Warwick was a bug that fear’d us all.
Now, Montague, sit fast; I seek for thee,
That Warwick’s bones may keep thine company.




Lo, now my glory smear’d in dust and blood!
My parks, my walks, my manors that I had.
Even now forsake me, and of all my lands
Is nothing left me but my body’s length.
Why, what is pomp, rule, reign, but earth and dust?
And, live we how we can, yet die we must.”

Thou lovest me not; for, brother, if thou didst,
Thy tears would wash this cold congealed blood
That glues my lips and will not let me speak.
Come quickly, Montague [Somerset], or I am dead.”


Thus far our fortune keeps an upward course,
And we are graced with wreaths of victory.
But, in the midst of this bright-shining day,
I spy a black, suspicious, threatening cloud,
That will encounter with our glorious sun,
Ere he attain his easeful western bed:
I mean, my lords, those powers that the queen
Hath raised in Gallia have arrived our coast
And, as we hear, march on to fight with us.”


The queen is valued 30,000 strong,
And Somerset, with Oxford fled to her:
If she have time to breathe be well assured
Her faction will be full as strong as ours.”



What though the mast be now blown overboard,
The cable broke, the holding-anchor lost,
And half our sailors swallow’d in the flood?
Yet lives our pilot still. Is’t meet that he
Should leave the helm and like a fearful lad
With tearful eyes add water to the sea
And give more strength to that which hath too much,
Whiles, in his moan, the ship splits on the rock,
Which industry and courage might have saved?


Why, is not Oxford here another anchor?
And Somerset another goodly mast?
The friends of France our shrouds and tacklings?
And, though unskilful, why not Ned and I
For once allow’d the skilful pilot’s charge?
We will not from the helm to sit and weep,
But keep our course, though the rough wind say no,
From shelves and rocks that threaten us with wreck.
As good to chide the waves as speak them fair.
And what is Edward but ruthless sea?
What Clarence but a quicksand of deceit?
And Richard but a ragged fatal rock?
All these the enemies to our poor bark.
Say you can swim; alas, ‘tis but a while!
Tread on the sand; why, there you quickly sink:
Bestride the rock; the tide will wash you off,
Or else you famish; that’s a threefold death.
This speak I, lords, to let you understand,
In case some one of you would fly from us,
That there’s no hoped-for mercy with the brothers
More than with ruthless waves, with sands and rocks.
Why, courage then! what cannot be avoided
‘Twere childish weakness to lament or fear.”


And he that will not fight for such a hope.
Go home to bed, and like the owl by day,
If he arise, be mock’d and wonder’d at.”


Now here a period of tumultuous broils.
Away with Oxford to Hames Castle straight:
For Somerset, off with his guilty head.
Go, bear them hence; I will not hear them speak.”


Bring forth the gallant, let us hear him speak.
What! can so young a thorn begin to prick?
Edward, what satisfaction canst thou make
For bearing arms, for stirring up my subjects,
And all the trouble thou hast turn’d me to?


Speak like a subject, proud ambitious York!
Suppose that I am now my father’s mouth;
Resign thy chair, and where I stand kneel thou,
Whilst I propose the selfsame words to thee,
Which traitor, thou wouldst have me answer to.


Ah, that thy father had been so resolved!”


Ay, thou wast born to be a plague to men.


For God’s sake, take away this captive scold.


Nay, take away this scolding crookback rather.


Peace, wilful boy, or I will charm your tongue.


Untutor’d lad, thou art too malapert.


I know my duty; you are all undutiful:
Lascivious Edward, and thou perjured George,
And thou mis-shapen Dick, I tell ye all
I am your better, traitors as ye are:
And thou usurp’st my father’s right and mine.”


O, kill me too!


Marry, and shall.

Offers to kill her


Hold, Richard, hold; for we have done too much.


Why should she live, to fill the world with words?


What, doth she swoon? use means for her recovery.”


O Ned, sweet Ned! speak to thy mother, boy!
Canst thou not speak? O traitors! murderers!
They that stabb’d Caesar shed no blood at all,
Did not offend, nor were not worthy blame,
If this foul deed were by to equal it:
He was a man; this, in respect, a child:
And men ne’er spend their fury on a child.
What’s worse than murderer, that I may name it?
No, no, my heart will burst, and if I speak:
And I will speak, that so my heart may burst.
Butchers and villains! bloody cannibals!
How sweet a plant have you untimely cropp’d!
You have no children, butchers! if you had,
The thought of them would have stirr’d up remorse:
But if you ever chance to have a child,
Look in his youth to have him so cut off
As, deathmen, you have rid this sweet young prince!”

What, wilt thou not? Where is that devil’s butcher,
Hard-favour’d Richard? Richard, where art thou?
Thou art not here: murder is thy alms-deed;
Petitioners for blood thou ne’er put’st back.”



Good Gloucester’ and ‘good devil’ were alike,
And both preposterous; therefore, not ‘good lord’.


Sirrah, leave us to ourselves: we must confer.

Exit Lieutenant


I, Daedalus; my poor boy, Icarus;
Thy father, Minos, that denied our course;
The sun that sear’d the wings of my sweet boy
Thy brother Edward, and thyself the sea
Whose envious gulf did swallow up his life.
Ah, kill me with thy weapon, not with words!
My breast can better brook thy dagger’s point
Than can my ears that tragic history.
But wherefore dost thou come? is’t for my life?


Think’st thou I am an executioner?


A persecutor, I am sure, thou art:
If murdering innocents be executing,
Why, then thou art an executioner.


Thy son I kill’d for his presumption.


Hadst thou been kill’d when first thou didst presume,
Thou hadst not lived to kill a son of mine.
And thus I prophesy, that many a thousand,
Which now mistrust no parcel of my fear,
And many an old man’s sigh and many a widow’s,
And many an orphan’s water-standing eye–
Men for their sons, wives for their husbands,
And orphans for their parents timeless death–
Shall rue the hour that ever thou wast born.
The owl shriek’d at thy birth,–an evil sign;
The night-crow cried, aboding luckless time;
Dogs howl’d, and hideous tempest shook down trees;
The raven rook’d her on the chimney’s top,
And chattering pies in dismal discords sung.
Thy mother felt more than a mother’s pain,
And, yet brought forth less than a mother’s hope,
To wit, an indigested and deformed lump,
Not like the fruit of such a goodly tree.
Teeth hadst thou in thy head when thou wast born,
To signify thou camest to bite the world:
And, if the rest be true which I have heard,
Thou camest—


I’ll hear no more: die, prophet in thy speech:

Stabs him

For this amongst the rest, was I ordain’d.


Ay, and for much more slaughter after this.
God forgive my sins, and pardon thee!


I, that have neither pity, love, nor fear.
Indeed, ‘tis true that Henry told me of;
For I have often heard my mother say
I came into the world with my legs forward:
Had I not reason, think ye, to make haste,
And seek their ruin that usurp’d our right?
The midwife wonder’d and the women cried
<O, Jesus bless us, he is born with teeth!>
And so I was; which plainly signified
That I should snarl and bite and play the dog.
Then, since the heavens have shaped my body so,
Let hell make crook’d my mind to answer it.
I have no brother, I am like no brother;
And this word ‘love’, which graybeards call divine,
Be resident in men like one another
And not in me: I am myself alone.
Clarence, beware; thou keep’st me from the light:
But I will sort a pitchy day for thee;
For I will buz abroad such prophecies
That Edward shall be fearful of his life,
And then, to purge his fear, I’ll be thy death.
King Henry and the prince his son are gone:
Clarence, thy turn is next, and then the rest,
Counting myself but bad till I be best.
I’ll throw thy body in another room
And triumph, Henry, in thy day of doom.

Exit, with the body”



What valiant foemen, like to autumn’s corn,
Have we mow’d down, in tops of all their pride!
Three Dukes of Somerset, threefold renown’d
For hardy and undoubted champions;
Two Cliffords, as the father and the son,
And two Northumberlands; two braver men
Ne’er spurr’d their coursers at the trumpet’s sound;
With them, the two brave bears, Warwick and Montague,
That in their chains fetter’d the kingly lion
And made the forest tremble when they roar’d.
Thus have we swept suspicion from our seat
And made our footstool of security.
Come hither, Bess, and let me kiss my boy.
Young Ned, for thee, thine uncles and myself
Have in our armours watch’d the winter’s night,
Went all afoot in summer’s scalding heat,
That thou mightst repossess the crown in peace;
And of our labours thou shalt reap the gain.


[Aside] I’ll blast his harvest, if your head were laid;
For yet I am not look’d on in the world.
This shoulder was ordain’d so thick to heave;
And heave it shall some weight, or break my back:
Work thou the way,–and thou shalt execute.”


What will your grace have done with Margaret?
Reignier, her father, to the king of France
Hath pawn’d the Sicils and Jerusalem,
And hither have they sent it for her ransom.”



And now what rests but that we spend the time
With stately triumphs, mirthful comic shows,
Such as befits the pleasure of the court?
Sound drums and trumpets! farewell sour annoy!
For here, I hope, begins our lasting joy.

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