« AnteriorContinuar »
The which will I; not all so much for love,
horse to market:
The Same. Another Street. Enter the Corpse of King HENRY VI., borne in an open Coffin, Gentlemen bearing Halberds ?, to guard it; and
LADY ANNE as mourner. ANNE. Set down, set down your honourable load, If honour may be shrouded in a hearse, Whilst I a while obsequiously 3 lament Th' untimely fall of virtuous Lancaster. Poor key-cold 4 figure of a holy king! Pale ashes of the house of Lancaster! Thou bloodless remnant of that royal blood! Be it lawful that I invocate thy ghost, To hear the lamentations of poor Anne, Wife to thy Edward, to thy slaughter'd son, Stabb’d by the self-same hand that made these wounds! 5 Lo, in these windows, that let forth thy life, I pour the helpless balm of my poor eyes: O, cursed be the hand that made these holes ! Cursed the heart, that had the heart to do it! Cursed the blood, that let this blood from hence! More direful hap betide that hated wretch, That makes us wretched by the death of thee, Than I can wish to adders, spiders, toads, Or any creeping venom'd thing that lives!
1. Which I must reach unto by tain. It is pretended, and was gemarrying her.
nerally believed, that the Duke of 2. Halberd, a battle-axe fixed to Gloucester killed him with his own a long pole.
hands: But the universal odium 3. Obsequiously, with funeral rites. which that prince has incurred, in4. i. e. as cold as a key.
clined perhaps the nation to ag5. The historian Hume says: gravate his crimes without any "King Henry expired in the Tower sufficient authority.” a few days after the battle of Tew 6. i. e. the gaping wounds. kesbury; but whether he died a 7. May a more fearful fate befal natural or violent death is uncer-' that hated wretch.
If ever he have child, abortive be it,
[The Bearers take up the Corpse and advance.
ANNE. What black magician conjures up this fiend,
Glos. Villains! set down the corse; or, by Saint Paul, I 'll make a corse of him that disobeys.
FIRST GENT. My lord, stand back, and let the coffin pass.
Glos. Unmanner'd dog! stand thou when I command: Advance thy halberd higher than my breast, 5 Or, by Saint Paul, I 'll strike thee to my foot, And spurn upon thee, beggar, for thy boldness.
[The Bearers set down the Coffin. ANNE. What! do you tremble? are you all afraid? Alas! I blame you not; for you are mortal, And mortal eyes cannot endure the devil. Avaunt, thou dreadful minister of hell! Thou hadst but power over his mortal body, His soul thou canst not have: therefore, begone.
Glos. Sweet saint, for charity, be not so curst. 5
ANNE. Foul devil, for God's sake, hence, and trouble us not; For thou hast made the happy earth thy hell, Fill'd it with cursing cries, and deep exclaims.
1. Unhappiness here means dispo 4. To stop consecrated deeds of sition to mischief, wickedness. love. 2. Than I am made by the death
5. i. e. put up, or 'raise, thy of my young lord, and of thee!
halberd (which the gentleman bad
pointed at Gloucester's breast). 3. Whiles, with an s, is no longer 6. Curst, malicious, i, e. be not in use as an adverb.
so bitter of speech.
If thou delight to view thy heinous deeds,
GLOSTER. Lady, you know no rules of charity, 6
ANNE. Villain, thou know'st nor law of God nor man: No beast so fierce, but knows some touch of pity.
Glos. But I know none, and therefore am no beast.
Glos. More wonderful, when angels are so angry. -
ANNE. Vouchsafe, diffus'd infection of a man,
Glos. Fairer than tongue can name thee, let me have Some patient leisure to excuse myself. 9
1. Pattern, example.
6. You do not know the precepts 2. It is a tradition very generally of charity. received, that the murdered body
7. By circumstance, circumstanbleeds on the touch of the murder- tially, explicitly. er. The northern nations anciently
8. Diffused anciently signified dark, practised this mode of trial in dubious cases.
obscure, strange, uncouth, or con3. Exhale here signifies to draw fused. This line is in antithesis to
the second line of Gloucester's out. The word commonly signifies, speech; perhaps it might be interto evaporate, to emit.
preted: Vouchsafe, uncouth pesti4. And swallow him alive.
lence of a man. 5. Which was frequently employed of persons by old writers, as also 9. Let me have a patient hearing who and whom of things.
that I may exonerate myself.
ANNE. Fouler than heart can think thee, thou canst make No excuse current, ' but to hang thyself.
GLOSTER. By such despair, ? I should accuse myself.
ANNE. And, by despairing, shalt thou stand excus’d;
Glos. Say, 4 that I slew them not?
Then say they were not slain: But dead. they are, and, devilish slave, by thee.
Glos. I did not kill your
Why, then he is alive.
ANNE. In thy foul throat thou liest: queen Margaret saw Thy murderous falchion smoking in his blood; The which thou once didst bend against her breast, But that thy brothers beat aside the point.
Glos. I was provoked by her sland'rous tongue,
Glos. I grant ye.
ANNE. Dost grant me, hedge-hog? then, God grant me too, Thou may'st be damned for that wicked deed! O! he was gentle, mild, and virtuous.
Glos. The fitter for the King of heaven that hath him. ANNE. He is in heaven, where thou shalt never come.
Glos. Let him thank me, that holp? to send him thither; For he was fitter for that place than earth.
ANNE. And thou unfit for any place but hell.
I know so.
- But, gentle lady Anne, To leave this keen encounter of our wits,
1. To be current, to be valid, to prevail.
2. By such a desperate deed.
5. i. e. my brothers' crime.
7. Holp, preterit of to help, which was formerly conjugated, help, holp, holpen.
And fall something into a slower method; - 1
ANNE. Thou wast the cause, and most accurs'd effect. 3
GLOSTER. Your beauty was the cause of that effect;
ANNE. If I thought that, I tell thee, homicide,
Glos. These eyes could not endure that beauty's wreck;
ANNE. Black night o'ershade thy day, and death thy life!
Glos. It is a quarrel most unnatural,
ANNE. It is a quarrel just and reasonable, To be reveng'd on him that killd my husband.
Glos. He that bereft thee, lady, of thy husband,
ANNE. His better doth not breathe upon the earth.
Why, that was he.
ANNE. Never hung poison on a fouler toad.
Glos. Thine eyes, sweet lady, have infected mine. ANNE. Would they were basilisks, to strike thee dead!
Glos. I would they were, that I might die at once, For now they kill me with a living death.
1. And talk in a' somewhat more 3. Effect, agent. serious strain. 2. As much to blame.
4. Mortal, deadly.