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Car. Charles, and the rest, it is enacted thus: That in regard king Henry gives consent, Of mere compassion, and of lenity,
To ease your country of distressful war,
And suffer you to breathe in fruitful peace,
You shall become true liegemen to his crown:
And Charles, upon condition thou wilt swear
To pay him tribute, and submit thyself,
Thou shalt be plac'd as viceroy under him,
And still enjoy thy regal dignity.
Alen. Must he be then a shadow of himself?
Adorn his temples with a coronet 8;
And yet, in substance and authority,
Retain but privilege of a private man?
This proffer is absurd and reasonless.
Char. 'Tis known, already that I am possess'd
With more than half the Gallian territories,
And therein reverenc'd for their lawful king:
Shall I, for lucre of the rest unvanquish'd,
Detract so much from that prerogative,
As to be called but viceroy of the whole?
No, lord ambassador; I'll rather keep
That which I have, than, coveting for more,
Be cast from possibility of all.
York. Insulting Charles! hast thou by secret means Used intercession to obtain a league;
And, now the matter grows to compromise,
Stand'st thou aloof upon comparison?
Either accept the title thou usurp'st,
Of benefit proceeding from our king,
And not of any challenge of desert,
Or we will plague thee with incessant wars.
Reig. My lord, you do not well in obstinacy
To cavil in the course of this contract:
If once it be neglected, ten to one,
We shall not find like opportunity.
Alen. To say the truth, it is your policy,
To save your subjects from such massacre,
And ruthless slaughters, as are daily seen
By our proceeding in hostility:
And therefore take this compact of a truce, Although you break it when your pleasure serves. [Aside to CHARLES. War. How say'st thou, Charles? shall our condition stand?
So am I driven, by breath of her renown, Either to suffer shipwreck, or arrive Where I may have fruition of her love.
Suf. Tush! my good lord! this superficial tale Is but a preface of her worthy praise: The chief perfections of that lovely dame, (Had I sufficient skill to utter them,) Would make a volume of enticing lines, Able to ravish any dull conceit, And, which is more, she is not so divine, So full replete with choice of all delights, But, with as humble lowliness of mind, She is content to be at your command; Command, I mean, of virtuous chaste intents, To love and honour Henry as her lord.
K. Hen. And otherwise will Henry ne'er presume. Therefore, my lord protector, give consent, That Margaret may be England's royal queen.
Glo. So should I give consent to flatter sin.
You know, my lord, your highness is betroth'd
Unto another lady of esteem;
How shall we then dispense with that contract,
And not deface your honour with reproach?
Suf. As doth a ruler with unlawful oaths;
Or one, that, at a triumph having vow'd
To try his strength, forsaketh yet the lists
By reason of his adversary's odds:
A poor earl's daughter is unequal odds,
And therefore may be broke without offence.
Glo. Why, what, I pray, is Margaret more than that?
Her father is no better than an earl,
Although in glorious titles he excel.
Suf. Yes, my good lord, her father is a king,
The king of Naples, and Jerusalem;
And of such great authority in France,
As his alliance will confirm our peace,
And keep the Frenchmen in allegiance.
Glo. And so the earl of Armagnac may do,
Because he is near kinsman unto Charles.
Ere. Beside, his wealth doth warrant liberal dower; While Reignier sooner will receive, than give.
Suf. A dower, my lords! disgrace not so your king,
That he should be so abject, base, and poor,
To choose for wealth, and not for perfect love.
Henry is able to enrich his queen,
And not to seek a queen to make him rich:
So worthless peasants bargain for their wives,
As market-men for oxen, sheep, or horse,
Marriage is a matter of more worth,
Than to be dealt in by attorneyship;
Not whom we will, but whom his grace affects,
Must be companion of his nuptial bed :
And therefore, lords, since he affects her most,
It most of all these reasons bindeth us,
In our opinions she should be preferr'd.
For what is wedlock forced, but a hell,
An age of discord and continual strife?
Whereas the contrary bringeth forth bliss,
And is a pattern of celestial peace.
Whom should we match with Henry, being a king,
But Margaret, that is daughter to a king?
Her peerless feature, joined with her birth,
Approves her fit for none, but for a king;
Her valiant courage, and undaunted spirit,
(More than in women commonly is seen,)
Will answer our hope in issue of a king;
For Henry, son unto a conqueror,
Is likely to beget more conquerors,
A triumph then signified a public exhibition; such as a mask, or revel
If with a lady of so high resolve,
As is fair Margaret, he be link'd in love.
Then yield, my lords; and here conclude with me,
That Margaret shall be queen, and none but she.
K. Hen. Whether it be through force of your
My noble lord of Suffolk; or for that
My tender youth was never yet attaint
With any passion of inflaming love,
I cannot tell; but this I am assur'd,
I feel such sharp dissension in my breast,
Such fierce alarums both of hope and fear,
As I am sick with working of my thoughts.
Take, therefore, shipping; post, my lord, to France;
Agree to any covenants; and procure
That lady Margaret do vouchsafe to come
To cross the seas to England, and be crown'd
King Henry's faithful and anointed queen:
For your expenses and sufficient charge,
Among the people gather up a tenth.
Begone, I say; for, till you do return,
I rest perplexed with a thousand cares. —
And you, good uncle, banish all offence:
If you do censure? me by what you were,
Not what you are, I know it will excuse
This sudden execution of my will.
And so conduct me, where from company,
I may revolve and ruminate my grief. [Erit.
Glo. Ay, grief, I fear me, both at first and last.
[Exeunt GLOSTER and EXETER.
Suf. 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.
HUME and SOUTHWELL, two Priests.
BOLINGBROKE, a Conjurer.
HUMPHREY, Duke of Gloster, his Uncle.
CARDINAL BEAUFORT, Bishop of Winchester, great A Spirit raised by him.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET, Duke of York.
EDWARD and RICHARD, his Sons.
DUKE OF SOMERSET,
DUKE OF SUFFOLK,
DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM,
THOMAS HORNER, an Armourer.
PETER, his Man.
Clerk of Chatham.
Mayor of Saint Alban's.
SIMPCOX, an Impostor.
MARGARET, Queen to King Henry.
ELEANOR, Duchess of Gloster.
MARGERY JOURDAIN, a Witch.
A Sea-Captain, Master, and Master's Mate, and Wife to Simpcox.
Two Gentlemen, Prisoners with Suffolk.
Lords, Ladies, and Attendants; Petitioners, Alder
men, a Beadle, Sheriff, and Officers, Citizens, Prentices, Falconers, Guards, Soldiers, Messengers, &c.
SCENE, dispersedly in various Parts of England.
To your most gracious hands, that are the substance
Of that great shadow I did represent;
The fairest queen that ever king receiv'd.
The happiest gift that ever marquess gave,
K. Hen. Suffolk, arise.
I can express no kinder sign of love,
Than this kind kiss.- O Lord, that lends me life,
Lend me a heart replete with thankfulness!
For thou hast given me, in this beauteous face,
A world of earthly blessings to my soul,
If sympathy of love unite our thoughts.
Q. Mar. Great king of England, and my gracious
The mutual conference that my mind hath had
By day, by night, waking, and in my dreams;
In courtly company, or at my beads,
With you, mine alder-liefest sovereign,
1 Beloved above all things.