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As brings a thousand-fold more care to keep,
Than in possession any jot of pleasure.
Ah, cousin York ! 'would thy best friends did know,
How it doth grieve me that thy head is here!

Q.Mar. My lord, cheer up your spirits; our foes are
And this soft courage makes your followers faint. heart
You promis'd knighthood to our forward son ;
Unsheath your sword, and dub him presently.
Edward, kneel down.

K. Hen. Edward Plantagenet, arise a knight ;
And learn this lesson,-Draw thy sword in right.

Prince. My gracious father, by your kingly leave,
I'll draw it as apparent to the crown,
And in that quarrel use it to the death.
Clif. Why, that is spoken like a toward prince.

Enter a Messenger.
Mess. Royal commanders, be in readiness ;
For, with a band of thirty thousand men,
Comes Warwick, backing of the duke of York;
And, in the towns as they do march along,
Proclaims him king, and many fly to him :
Darraigns your battle, for they are at hand.

Clif. I would, your highness would depart the field ;
The queen hath best success when you are absent.

Q. Mar. Ay, good my lord, and leave us to our fortune.
K. Hen. Why, that's my fortune too; therefore I'll stay.
North. Be it with resolution then to fight.

Prince. My royal father, cheer these noble lords,
And hearten those that fight in your defence :
Unsheath your sword, good father; cry, Saint George!
March. Enter EDWARD, GEORGE, RICHARD, WAR-

WICK, NORFOLK, MONTAGUE, and Soldiers.
Edw. Now, perjur'd Henry ! wilt thou kneel for grace,
And set thy diadem upon my head;
Or bide the mortal fortune of the field ?

Q.Mar. Go, rate thy minions, proud insulting boy!
Becomes it thee to be thus bold in terms,
Before thy sovereign, and thy lawful king ?

Edw. I am his king, and he should bow his knee ;
I was adopted heir by his consent :
Since when, his oath is broke ; for, as I hear,
You that are king, though he do wear the crown,
[5] That is, Range yoor host, put your bost in order. JOHNS.

Have caus’d him, by new act of parliament,
To blot out me, and put his own son in.

Clif. And reason too ;
Who should succeed the father, but the son?

Rich. Are you there, butcher ?-0, I cannot speak !

Clif. Ay, crook-back ; here I stand, to answer thee, Or any he the proudest of thy sort.

Rich. 'Twas you that kill'd young Rutland, was it not?
Clif. Ay, and old York, and yet not satisfied.
Rich. For God's sake, lords, give signal to the fight.
War. What say'st thou, Henry, wilt thou yield the

crown? Q.Mar. Why, how now, long-tongu'd Warwick ?

dare you speak ?
When you and I met at Saint Alban's last,
Your legs did better service than your hands.

War. Then 'twas my turn to fly, and now 'tis thine.
Clif. You said so much before, and yet you fled.
War. 'Twas not your valour, Clifford, drove me

thence. North. No, nor your manhood, that durst make you

stay.
Rich. Northumberland, I hold thee reverently ;-
Break off the parle ; for scarce I can refrain
The execution of my big-swoln heart
Upon that Clifford, that cruel child-killer.

Clif. I slew thy father: Call'st thou him a child ?

Rich. Ay, like a dastard, and a treacherous coward, As thou didst kill our tender brother Rutland ; But, ere sun-set, I'll make thee curse the deed. K.Hen. Have done with words, my lords, and hear

me speak. Q.Mar. Defy them then, or else hold close thy lips.

K.Hen. I prythee, give no limits to my tongue ; I am a king, and privileg'd to speak.

Clif. My liege, the wound, that bred this meeting here, Cannot be cur'd by words ; therefore be still.

Rich. Then, executioner, unsheath thy sword :
By him that made us all, I am resolv’d, 6
That Clifford's manhood lies upon his tongue.

Edw. Say, Henry, shall I have my right, or no?
A thousand men have broke their fasts to-day,
That ne'er shall dine, unless thou yield the crown.

War. If thou deny, their blood upon thy head ; [0] It is my firm persuasion; I am no longer in doubt. JOHNS:

20 VOL, V.

For York in justice puts his armour on.

Prince. If that be right, which Warwick says is right, There is no wrong, but every thing is right.

Rich. Whoever got thee, there thy mother stands ;
For, well I wot, thou hast thy mother's tongue.

Q.Mar. But thou art neither like thy sire, nor dam ;
But like a foul mishapen stigmatic, ?
Mark'd by the destinies to be avoided,
As venom toads, or lizards' dreadful stings.

Rich. Iron of Naples, hid with English gilt,
Whose father bears the title of a king,
(As if a channel 8 should be call’d the sea,)
Sham'st thou not, knowing whence thou art extraught,
To let thy tongue detect thy base-born heart 9

Edw. A wisp'of straw were worth a thousand crowns,
To make this shameless callet know herself.: -
Helen of Greece was fairer far than thou,
Although thy husband may be Menelaus ;3
And ne'er was Agamemnon's brother wrong'd
By that false woman, as this king by thee.
His father revell'd in the heart of France,
And tam'd the king, and made the Dauphin stoop ;
And, had he match'd according to his state,
He might have kept that glory to this day :
But, when he took a beggar to his bed,
And grac'd thy poor sire with his bridal day;
Even then that sunshine brew'd a shower for him,
That wash'd his father's fortunes forth of France,
And heap'd sedition on his crown at home.
For what hath broach'd this tumult, but thy pride ?
Hadst thou been meek, our title still had slept ;
And we, in pity of the gentle king,
Had slipp'd our claim until another age.

Geo. But, when we saw our sunshine made thy spring,

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[7] “A stigmatic," says J. Bullokar in his English Expositor, 1616, “is a notorious lewd fellow, which hath been burnt with a hot iron, or beareth other marks about him as a token of his punishment." STEEV.

[8] A channel, in our author's time, signified what we now call a kere nel. STEEV.Kennel is still pronounced channel in the North

RITSON. (9) To show thy meanness of birth by the indecency of language with which thou railest at my deformity. JOHNS.

[1] I believe that a wisp signified some instrument of correction used in the time of Shakspeare. STEEV.

(2] Callet, is a lewd woman, a drab, perhaps so called from the French calote, which was a sort of head-dress worn by country girls. GREY.

(3) i.e. a cuckold. STEEV.

And that thy summer bred us no increase,
We set the axe to thy usurping root : 4
And though the edge hath something hit ourselves,
Yet, know thou, since we have begun to strike,
We'll never leave, till we have hewn thee down,
Or bath'd thy growing with our heated bloods.

Edw. And, in this resolution, I defy thee;
Not willing any longer conference,
Since thou deny'st the gentle king to speak.-
Sound trumpets !-let our bloody colours wave!
And either victory, or else a grave.

Q.Mar. Stay, Edward.

Èdw. No, wrangling woman; we'll no longer stay : These words will cost ten thousand lives to-day.[Exeunt.

SCENE III.
A Field of Battle 5 between Towton and Saxton in Yorkshire:

Alarums : Excursions. Enter WARWICK.
War. Forspent with toil, as runners with a race,
I lay me down a little while to breathe :
For strokes receiv'd, and many blows repaid,
Have robb'd my strong-knit sinews of their strength,
And, spite of spite, needs must I rest a while.

[4] When we saw that by favouring thee we made thee grow in fortone, but that we received no advantage from thy fortune Aourishing by our fa. vour, we then resolved to destroy thee, and determined to try sonie other means, though our first efforts have failed.

JOHNS. 15] We should read near Towton. Shakspeare has here, perhaps, intentionally thrown three aifferent actions into one. The Lord Fitzwater, be. ing stationed by King Edward, to defend the pass of Ferrybridge, was assaulted by the Lord Clifford, and immediately slain, “and with hym” says Hall the bastard of Salisbury, brother to the earl of Warwycke, a valeaunt young gentleman, and of great audacitie. When the earl of Warwicke," adds he, “was informed of this feate, he lyke a man desperated, mounted on his hackeney, and came blowing to kynge Edwarde, saiyng : Syr, I praye God have mercy of their soules, which in the beginning of your enterprise bath Jost their lyfes, and because I se no succors of the world, I remit the vengeance and punishment to God our creator and Redeemer ; and with that lighied doune, and slewe his horse with his swourde, saiyog: let them Aye that wyl, for surely I wil tarye with him thit wil tarye with me, and kissed the crosse of his swourde." Clifford, in his retreat, was beset with a party of Yorkists, when “ eyther,” says the historian, "for heat or payne, putting of his gorget, sodainly with an arrowe (as some say) without an hedde (he) was striken into the throte, and incontinent rendered his spirite, and the erle of Westmerlandes brother, and almost all his company were thare slayn, at a place called Dinting dale, not farr fro Tow ton.” In the af. ternoon of the next day (Palm Sunday eve 146!) on a plain field between Towton and Saxton, joined the main battles which continued engaged that night, and the greater part of the following day : upwards of 30,000 men, all English (including many of the nobility and the flower of the gentry, especially of the northern parts) being slain on both sides. This battle, says Carte, “decided the fate of the house of Lancaster, overturning in one day

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Enter EDWARD, running.
Edw. Smile, gentle heaven! or strike, ungentlc death!
For this world frowns, and Edward's sun is clouded.
War.How now,my lord ? what hap? what hope of good ?

Enter GEORGE.
Geo. Our hap is lost, our hope but sad despair ;
Our ranks are broke, and ruin follows us :
What counsel give you? whither shall we fly?

Edw. Bootless is fight, they follow us with wings; And weak we are, and cannot shun pursuit.

Enter RICHARD. Rich. Ah, Warwick,why hast thou withdrawn thyself? Thy brother's blood the thirsty earth hath drunk, Broach'd with the steely point of Clifford's lance: And, in the very pangs of death, he cry'd,Like to a dismal clangor heard from far,Warwick, revenge ! brother, revenge my death So underneath the belly of their steeds, That stain'd their fetlocks in his smoaking blood, The noble gentleman gave up the ghost.

War. Then let the earth be drunken with our blood :
I'll kill my horse, because I will not fly.
Why stand we like soft-hearted women here,
Wailing our losses, whiles the foes doth rage ;
And look upon, as if the tragedy
Were play'd in jest by counterfeiting actors ?
Here on my knee I vow to God above,
I'll never pause again, never stand still,
Till either death hath clos') these eyes of mine,
Or fortune give me measure of revenge.

Edw. O Warwick, I do bend my knee with thine ;
And, in this vow, do chain my soul to thine.
And, ere my knee rise from the earth's cold face,
I throw my hands, mine eyes, my heart to thee,
Thou setter up and plucker down of kings !
Beseeching thee, if with thy will it stands,
That to my foes this body must be prey,-
Yet that thy brazen gates of heaven may ope,

an usurpation strengthened by sixty-two years continuance, and established Edward on the throne of England.” RITSON.

The royal army consisted, according to Hall, of about forty thoạ. sand men, and the young duke of York's forces were 48,760. In this combut which lasted fifteen hours, and in the actions of the two following days, thirty-six thousand seven hundred and seventy six persons are said to have been killed, the greater part of whom were undoubtedly Lancastrians. The total number of persons who fell in the contest between the houses of York and Lancaster, was ninety-one thousand and twenty-six. MAL.

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