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Impairing Henry, strength'ning mis-proud York,
The common people swarm like summer flies :
And whither fly the gnats, but to the sun ?
And who shines now but Henry's enemies ?
O Phoebus ! hadst thou never given consent 9
That Phaëton should check thy fiery steeds,
Thy burning car never had scorch'd the earth :
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 ten thousand in this luckless realm,
Had left no mourning widows for our death,
And thou this day hadst kept thy chair in peace.
For what doth cherish weeds, but gentle air ?
And what makes robbers bold, but too much lenity.
Bootless are plaints, and cureless are my wounds;
No way to fly, nor strength to hold out flight :
The foe is merciless, and will not pity ;
For, at their hands, I have deserv'd no pity.
The air hath got into my deadly wounds,
And much effuse of blood doth make me faint:-
Come, York, and Richard, Warwick, and the rest ;
I stabb'd your father's bosoms, split my breast.

[He faints. Alarum and Retreat. Enter EDWARD, GEORGE,

Edw. Now breathe we, lords ; good fortune bids us

And smooth the frowns of war with peaceful looks.-
Some troops pursue the bloody-minded queen ;-
That led calm Henry, though he were a king,
As doth a sail, fill'd with a fretting gust,
Command an argosy to stem the waves.
But think you, lords, that Clifford fled with them?

War. No, 'tis impossible he should escape :
For, though before his face I speak the words,
Your brother Richard mark'd him for the grave :
And, wheresoe'er he is, he's surely dead.

[CLIFFORD groans,, and dies. Edw. Whose soul is that which takes her heavy leave ?

[9] The Duke of York had been entrusted by Henry with the reins of government both in Ireland and France : and hence perhaps was taught to aspire to the throne. MAL.

Rich. A deadly groan, like life and death's departing.

Edw. See who it is : and, now the battle's ended, If friend, or foe, let him be gently us'd.

Rich. Revoke that doom of mercy, for 'tis Clifford ; Who not contented that he lopp'd the branch In hewing Rutland when his leaves put forth, But set his murdering knife unto the root From whence that tender spray did sweetly spring, I mean, our princely father, duke of York.

War. From off the gates of York fetch down the head, Your father's head, which Clifford placed there ; Instead whereof, let this supply the room ; Measure for measure must be answered.

Edw. Bring forth that fatal screech-owl to our house, That nothing sung but death to us and ours : Now death shall stop his dismal threatening, sound, And his ill-boding tongue no more shall speak.

(Attendants bring the Body forward. War. 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.

Rich. O, 'would he did ! and so, perhaps, he doth ;
'Tis but his policy to counterfeit,
Because he would avoid such bitter taunts
Which in the time of death he gave our father.

Geo. If so thou think'st, vex him with eager words.3
Rich. Clifford, ask mercy, and obtain no grace.
Edw. Clifford, repent in bootless penitence.
War. Clifford, devise excuses for thy faults.
Geo. While we devise fell tortures for thy faults.
Rich. Thou didst love York, and I am son to York.
Edw. Thou pitied'st Rutland, I will pity thee.
Geo. Where's captain Margaret, to fence you now?
War. They mock thee, Clifford ! swear as thou wast

wont. Rich. What, not an oath ? nay, then the world goes

When Clifford cannot spare his friends an oath :--
I know by that, he's dead ; And, by my soul,
If this right hand would buy two hours life,
That I in all despite might rail at him,

[2] Departing for separation. MAL. Till death us depart" was the expression in the old Marriage Service. FARMER. 033 Sour words ; words of asperity, JOHNS.

This hand should chop it off; and with the issuing blood
Stifle the villain, whose unstaunched thirst
York and young Rutland could not satisfy.

War. 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 buz, to offend thine ears.
First, will I see the coronation ;
And then to Britany I'll cross the sea,
To effect this marriage, so it please my lord.

Edw. Even as thou wilt, sweet Warwick, let it be ; For on thy shoulder do I build my seat ; And never will I undertake the thing, Wherein thy counsel and consent is wanting.Richard, I will create thee duke of Gloster ;And George, of Clarence ;-Warwick, as ourself, Shall do, and undo, as him pleaseth best.

Rich. Let me be duke of Clarence ; George, of Gloster; For Gloster's dukedom is too ominous. 4

War. Tot, that's a foolish observation ; Richard, be duke of Gloster: Now to London, To see these honours in possession.


ACT HI. SCENE I.-A Chace in the North of England. Enter two Keepers, with Cross-bows in their Hands.

1 Keeper. UNDER this thick-grown brake we'll shroud ourselves; For through this laund anon the deer will come ; And in this covert will we make our stand, Culling the principal of all the deer.

2 Keep. I'll stay above the hill, so both may shoot. 1 Keep. That cannot be ; the noise of thy cross-bow [4] Alluding, perhaps, to the deaths of Thomas of Woodstock, and Humphrey, Dukes of Gloster. STEEV. [5] Laund means the same as bawn; a plain extended between wonde:


Will scare the herd, and so my shoot is lost.
Here stand we both, and aim we at the best :
And, for the time shall not seem tedious,
I'll tell thee what befel me on a day,
In this self-place where now we mean to stand.

2 Keep. Here comes a man, let's stay till he be past, Enter King HENRY, disguised, with a Prayer-bock.

K. Hen. From Scotland I am stol'n, even of pure love, To greet mine own land with my wishful sight. No, Harry, Harry, 'tis no land of thine ; Thy place is fill'd, thy scepter wrung from thee, Thý balm wash'd off, 2 wherewith thou wast anointed : No bending knee will call thee Cæsar 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?

1 Keep. Ay, here's a deer whose skin's a keeper's fee: This is the quondam king ;3 let's seize upon him.

K.Hen. Let me embrace these sour adversities ; For wise men say, it is the wisest course.

2 Keep. Why linger we let us lay hands upon him. 1 Keep. Forbear a while ; we'll hear a little more.

K.Hen. My queen, and son, are gone to France for aid ; And, as I hear, the great commanding Warwick Is thither gone, to crave the French king's sister To wife for Edward : If this news be true, Poor queen, and son, your labour is but lost ; For Warwick is a subtle orator, And Lewis a prince soon won with moving words. By this account, then, Margaret may win him ; For she's a woman to be pitied much : Her sighs will make a battery in his breast; Her tears will pierce into a marble heart; The tiger will be mild, while she doth mourn ; And Nero will be tainted with remorse, To hear, and see, her plaints, her brinish tears. 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 depos'd ;

[2] This is an image very frequent in the works of Shakspeare. It is common in these plays to find the same images, whether jocular or serious, frequently recurring. JOHNS. [3] Quondam had not in Shakspeare's time uniformly acquired a ladic.



rous sense.


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, 4 thus 't will be ; and thou, poor soul,
Art then forsaken, as thou went'st forlorn.

2 Keep. Say, who art thou, that talk'st of kings and

K.Hen. More than I seem, and less than I was born to : A man at least, for less I should not be ; And men may talk of kings, and why not I?

2 Keep. Ay, but thou talk'st as if thou wert a king. K.Hen. Why, so I am, in mind ; and that's enough. 2 Keep. But, if thou be a king, where is thy crown? K.Hen. My crown is in my heart, not on my head ; Not deck'd with diamonds, and Indian stones, Nor to be seen : my crown is call’d, content ; A crown it is, that seldom kings enjoy.

2 Keep. 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 depos'd ; And we his subjects, sworn in all allegiance, Will apprehend you as his enemy.

K.Hen. But did you never swear, and break an oath? 2 Keep. No, never such an oath, nor will not now. K.Hen. Where did you dwell, when I was king of

England ? 2 Keep. Here in this country, where we now remain.

K.Hen. 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 ?

1 Keep. No;
For we were subjects, but while you were king.

K.Hen. Why, am I dead ? do I not breathe a man? 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,

[4] The piety of Henry scarce interests us more for his misfortunes, than this his constant solicitude for the welfare of his deceitful queen. STEEV.

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