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Boling. Rise up, good aunt.


I thee beseech
Forever will I kneel upon my knees,
And never see day that the happy sees,
Till thou give joy; until thou bid me joy,
By pardoning Rutland, my transgressing boy.
Aum. Unto my mother's prayers, I bend my knee.

(Kneels. York. Against them both, my true joints bended be

[Kneels. Ill mayst thou thrive, if thou grant any grace!

Duch. Pleads he in earnest ? look upon his face
His eyes do drop no tears ; his prayers are in jest ;
His words come from his mouth, ours from our breast;
He prays but faintly, and would be denied;

pray with heart, and soul, and all beside;
His weary joints would gladly rise, I know ;
Our knees shall kneel till to the ground they grow ;
His prayers are full of false hypocrisy ;
Ours, of true zeal and deep integrity.
Our prayers do out-pray his; then let them have
That mercy, which true prayers ought to have.

Boling. Good aunt, stand up.

Nay, do not say—stand up;
But, pardon, first; and afterwards, stand up.
An if I were thy nurse, thy tongue to teach,
Pardon-should be the first word of thy speech.
I never longed to hear a word till now;
Say-pardon, king; let pity teach thee how.
The word is short, but not so short as sweet;
No word like pardon, for kings' mouths so meet.
York. Speak it in French, king; say, pardonnez

moy. Duch. Dost thou teach pardon pardon to destroy ? Ay, my sour husband, my hard-hearted lord, That sett'st the word itself against the word !


1 Thus the folio. The quarto copies read walk. 2 This line is not in the folio. 3 i. e. excuse me—a phrase used when any thing is civilly declined.

Speak, pardon, as 'tis current in our land;
The chopping French we do not understand.
Thine eye begins to speak; set thy tongue there,
Or, in thy piteous heart plant thou thine ear;
That, hearing how our plaints and prayers do pierce,
Pity may move thee, pardon to rehearse.

Boling. Good aunt, stand up.

I do not sue to stand ; Pardon is all the suit I have in hand.

Boling. I pardon him, as God shall pardon me.

Duch. O, happy vantage of a kneeling knee !
Yet am I sick for fear: speak it again ;
Twice saying pardon, doth not pardon twain,
But makes one pardon strong.

With all my heart
I pardon him.
Duch. A god on earth thou art.
Boling. But for our trusty brother-in-law,—and

3 the abbot, With all the rest of that consorted crew,Destruction straight shall dog them at the heels.Good uncle, help to order several powers To Oxford, or where'er these traitors are. They shall not live within this world, I swear, But I will have them, if I once know where. Uncle, farewell,—and cousin too, adieu : Your mother well hath prayed, and prove you true. Duch. Come, my old son ;-I pray God make thee




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1 Thus “ chopping churches” is changing one church for another, and chopping logic is discoursing or interchanging logic with another. To chop and change is still a common idiom.

The old copies read, “ I pardon him with all my heart.” The transposition was made by Pope.

3 The brother-in-law meant was John duke of Exeter and earl of Huntingdon (own brother to Edward II.), who had married the lady Elizabeth, Bolingbroke's sister.

4 i. e. the abbot of Westminster.

5 Too, which is not in the old copies, was added by Theobald for the sake of the metre.


Enter Exton and a Servant.
Exton. Didst thou not mark the king, what words

he spake?
Have I no friend will rid me of this living fear?
Was it not so?

Those were his very words.
Exton. Have I no friend ? quoth he; he spake it

twice, And urged it twice together; did he not?

Serv. He did.

Exton. And, speaking it, he wistfully looked on me; As who should say,—I would thou wert the man That would divorce this terror from my heart; Meaning, the king at Pomfret.

Come, let's go; I am the king's friend, and will rid' his foe.


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SCENE V. Pomfret.

The Dungeon of the Castle.

Enter King RICHARD. K. Rich. I have been studying how I may compare This prison, where I live, unto the world; And, for because the world is populous, And here is not a creature but myself, I cannot do it ;-yet I'll hammer it out. My brain I'll prove the female to my soul ; My soul, the father; and these two beget A generation of still-breeding thoughts, And these same thoughts people this little world; In humors, like the people of this world,


1 To rid and to despatch were formerly synonymous, as may be seen in the old dictionaries.

2 i. e. his own body.


For no thought is contented. The better sort-
As thoughts of things divine—are intermixed
With scruples, and do set the word itself
Against the word ;
As thus, Come, little ones ; and then again,-
It is as hard to come, as for a camel
To thread the postern of a needle's eye.
Thoughts tending to ambition, they do plot
Unlikely wonders : how these vain, weak nails
May tear a passage through the flinty ribs
Of this hard world, my ragged prison walls;
And, for they cannot, die in their own pride.
Thoughts tending to content, flatter themselves, -
That they are not the first of fortune's slaves,,
Nor shall not be the last; like silly beggars,
Who, sitting in the stocks, refuge their shame,-
That many have, and others must sit there;
And in this thought they find a kind of ease,
Bearing their own misfortune on the back
Of such as have before endured the like.
Thus play I, in one person, o many people,
And none contented. Sometimes am I king;
Then treason makes me wish myself a beggar,
And so I am. Then crushing penury .
Persuades me, I was better when a king;

Then am I kinged again : and, by-and-by,
Think that I am unkinged by Boling broke,
And straight am nothing.–But whate'er I am,
Nor 1, nor any man, that but man is,
With nothing shall be pleased, till he be eased
With being nothing.–Music do I hear ? [Music.
Ha, ha! keep time.—How sour sweet music is,
When time is broke, and no proportion kept !
So is it in the music of men's lives.
And here have I the daintiness of ear

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By the word is meant the Holy Scriptures. The folio reads, the faith itself against the faith.

2 The folio, and other copies, read “in one prison.”



To check 1 time broke in a disordered string;
But, for the concord of my state and time,
Had not an ear to hear my true time broke.
I wasted time, and now doth time waste me.
For now hath time made me his numbering clock;
My thoughts are minutes; and, with sighs, they jar?
Their watches on to mine eyes, the outward watch,
Whereto my finger, like a dial's point,
Is pointing still, in cleansing them from tears.
Now, sir, the sound, that tells what hour it is,
Are clamorous groans, that strike upon my heart,
Which is the bell. So sighs, and tears, and groans,
Show minutes, times, and hours ;- but my

Runs posting on in Bolingbroke's proud joy,
While I stand fooling here, his Jack o’the clock.*
This music mads me ; let it sound no more ;
For, though it have holp madmen to their wits,
In me, it seems, it will make wise men mad;
Yet blessing on his heart that gives it me!
For 'tis a sign of love ; and love to Richard
Is a strange brooch in this all-hating world.

Enter Groom.

Groom. Hail, royal prince !
K. Rich.

Thanks, noble peer ;
The cheapest of us is ten groats too dear.
What art thou, and how comest thou hither,


1 The folio reads "To hear."

2 Tick. 3 It should be recollected that there are three ways in which a clock notices the progress of time, viz. by the vibration of the pendulum, the index on the dial, and the striking of the hour. To these the king, in his comparison, severally alludes; his sighs corresponding to the jarring or ticking of the pendulum, which, at the same time that it watches or numbers the seconds, marks also their progress in minutes on the dial-plate, or outward watch, to which the king compares his eyes; and their want of figures is supplied by a succession of tears (or minute drops, to use an expression of Milton); his finger, by as regularly wiping these away, performs the office of the dial's point; his clamorous groans are the sounds that tell the hour.

4 That is, I strike for him. One of these automatons is alluded to in King Richard III. Act iv. Sc. 2.

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