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K. Rich. I will converse with iron-witted fools,
Re-enter BUCKINGHAM. [Descends from his Throne.
Buck. My lord, I have considered in my mind And unrespective 4 boys: none are for me,
The late deinand that you did sound me in. That look into me with considerate eyes ;
K. Rich. Well, let that rest. Dorset is fled to High-reaching Buckingham grows circumspect.
Buck. I hear the news, my lord. Page. My lord.
K. Rich. Stanley, he is your wife's son:- - Well, K. Rich. Know'st thou not any, whom corrupting
look to it. gold
Buck. My lord, I claim the gift, my due by Would tempt unto a close exploit 5 of death?
promise, Page. I know a discontented gentleman, Whose humble means match not his haughty mind : The earldom of Hereford, and the movables,
For which your honour and your faith is pawn'd; Gold were as good as twenty orators,
Which you have promised I shall possess. And will, no doubt, tempt him to any thing.
K. Rich. Stanley, look to your wife; if she convey K. Rich. What is his name?
Letters to Richmond, you shall answer it.
Buck. What says your highness to my just reK. Rich. I partly know the man; Go, call him
quest? hither, boy.
K. Rich. I do remember me,- Henry the sixth The deep-revolving witty Buckingham
Did prophecy, that Richmond should be king, No more shall be the neighbour to my counsels :
When Richmond was a little peevisho boy. Hath he so long held out with me untir'd,
A king !- perhaps
Buck. My lord,
K. Rich. How chance, the prophet could not at
that time, How now, lord Stanley? what's the news Stan.
Know, my loving lord, Have told me, I being by, that I should kill him ? The marquis Dorset, as I hear, is fed
Buck. My lord, your promise for the earldom,
K. Rich. Richmond ! When last I was
And call'd it – Rouge-mont: at which name, I
started; Inquire me out some mean-born gentleman, Whom I will marry straight to Clarence's
daughter: I should not live long after I saw Richmond.
Because a bard of Ireland told me once,
Buck. My lord,
K. Rich. That Anne my queen is sick, and like to die:
Ay, what's o'clock ?
Buck. About it; for it stands me much upon ?,
I am thus bold To stop all hopes, whose growth may damage me.
To put your grace in mind of what you promis'd me. (Erit CaresBY.
K. Rich. Well, but what is't o'clock? I must be married to my brother's daughter,
Upon the stroke
K. Rich. Well, let it strike.
Buck. Uncertain way of gain! But I am in
Why, let it strike? So far in blood, that sin will pluck on sin.
K. Rich. Because that, like a Jack', thou keep'st
the stroke Tear-falling pity dwells not in this eye.
Betwixt thy begging and meditation.
I am not in the giving vein to-day.
Buck. Why, then resolve me whe'r you will, or no. Tyr. James Tyrrel, and your most obedient subject. K. Rich. Thou troublest me; I am not in the vein. X. Rich. Art thou, indeed ?
[Exeunt King RICHARD and Train. Tyr.
Prove me, my gracious lord. Buck. And is it thus ? repays he my deep service K. Rich. Dar’st thou resolve to kill a friend of With such contempt? made I him king for this? mine?
O, let me think on Hastings; and begone Tyr. Please you ; but I had rather kill two ene- To Brecknock ', while my fearful head is on. (Exu.
mies. K. Rich. Why, then thou hast it; two deep ene
SCENE III. — The same.
Tyr. The tyrannous and bloody act is done ;
The most arch deed of piteous massacre, Tyrrel, I mean those bastards in the Tower.
Tyr. Let me have open means to come to them, That ever yet this land was guilty of. And soon I'll rid you from the fear of them. Dighton and Forrest, whom I did suborn K. Rich. Thou sing'st sweet music. Hark, come To do this piece of ruthless butchery, hither, Tyrrel;
Albeit they were flesh'd villains, bloody dogs, Go, by this token: - Rise, and lend thine ear :
Melting with tenderness and inild compassion, [Whispers
Wept like two children, in their death's sad story. There is no more but so : Say, it is done, O thus, quoth Dighton, lay the gentle babes, – And I will love thee, and prefer thee for it.
9 Foolish. [Erit.
I A Jack of the clock-house is an image like those at St. Tyr. I will despatch it straight.
Dunstan's church in Fleet-street, and was then a comiaon 4 Inconsiderate.
appendage to clocks. 7 It is of great consequence to my designs.
5 Secret act.
* His castle in Wales.
Thus, thus, quoth Forrest, girdling one another, To watch the waning of mine enemies.
A dire induction am I witness to,
And will to France ; hoping the consequence Which in their summer beauty kiss'd each other, Will prove as bitter, black, and tragical. A book of prayers on their pillow lay,
Withdraw thee, wretched Margaret! who comes Which once, quoth Forrest, almost chang'd my mind,
here? But, 0, the devil there the villain stopp'd;
Enter QUEEN ELIZABETH and the Duchess OF When Dighton thus told on, — we smothered
Q. Eliz. Ah, my poor princes ! ah, my tender Hence both are gone with conscience and remorse,
babes! They could not speak; and so I left them both, My unblown flowers, new-appearing sweets ! To bear these tidings to the bloody king.
If yet your gentle souls fly in the air,
And be not fix'd in doom perpetual,
Hover about me with your airy wings,
Q. Mar. Hover about her; say, that right for right K. Rich. Kind Tyrrel ! am I happy in thy news?
Tyr. If to have done the thing you gave in charge Hath dimm’d your infant morn to aged night. Beget your happiness, be happy then,
Duch. So many miseries have craz'd my voice, For it is done.
That my woe-wearied tongue is still and mute, K. Rich. But didst thou see them dead ?
Edward Plantagenet, why art thou dead ?
Q. Mar. Plantagenet doth quit Plantagenet. Tyr. I did, my lord. K. Rich. And buried, gentle Tyrrel ? Edward for Edward pays a dying debt.
Duch. Dead life, blind sight, poor mortal-living Tyr. The chaplain of the Tower hath buried them;
ghost, But where, to say the truth, I do not know.
Woe's scene, world's shame, grave's due, by life K. Rich. Come to me, Tyrrel, soon, at after supper, Brief abstract and record of tedious days,
usurp'd, When thou shalt tell the process of their death. Mean time, but think how I may do thee good,
Rest thy unrest on England's lawful earth, And be inheritor of thy desire.
[Sitting down. Farewell, till then.
Unlawfully made drunk with innocent blood ! Tyr. I humbly take my leave. (Exit.
Q. Eliz. Ah, that thou wouldst as soon afford a K. Rich. The son of Clarence have I penn'd up As thou canst yield a melancholy seat ;
grave, close; His daughter meanly have I match'd in marriage;
Then would I hide my bones, not rest them here! The sons of Edward sleep in Abraham's bosom,
Ah, who hath any cause to mourn, but we? And Anne my wife hath bid the world good night.
(Sitting down by her. Now, for I know the Bretagnes Richmond aims
Q. Mar. If ancient sorrow be most reverent, At young Elizabeth, my brother's daughter,
Give mine the benefit of seniory 5, And, by that knot, looks proudly on the crown,
And let my griefs frown on the upper hand. To her go I, a jolly thriving woer,
If sorrow can admit society,
(Sitting down with them. Enter CATESBY.
Tell o'er your woes again by viewing mine : Cate. My lord,
I had an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him ; K. Rich. Good news, or bad, that thou com'st in I had a husband, till a Richard kill'd him : so bluntly?
Thou hadst an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him; Cate. Bad news, my lord: Morton 4 is fled to
Thou hadst a Richard, till a Richard kill'd him. Richmond;
Duch. I had a Richard too, and thou didst kill And Buckingham, back'd with the hardy Welshmen, I had a Rutland too, thou holp’st to kill him.
him ; Is in the field, and still his power increaseth. K. Rich. Ely with Richmond troubles me more
Q. Mar. Thou hadst a Clarence too, and Richard
kill'd him. near, Than Buckingham and his rash-levied strength.
From forth the kennel of thy womb hath crept Come, – I have learn'd, that fearful commenting
A hell-hound, that doth hunt us all to death : Is leaden servitor to dull delay;
That dog, that had his teeth before his eyes, Delay leads impotent and snail-pac'd beggary :
To worry lainbs, and lap their gentle blood; Then fiery expedition be my wing,
That excellent grand tyrant of the earth, Jove's Mercury, and herald for a king !
That reigns in galled eyes of weeping souls, Go, muster men: My counsel is my shield;
Thy womb let loose, to chase us to our graves. We must be brief, when traitors brave the field. O upright, just, and true-disposing God,
How do I thank thee, that this carnal cur
Preys on the issue of his mother's body, SCENE IV. - Before the Palace. And makes her pew-fellow 6 with others' moan!
Duch. O, Harry's wife, triumph not in my woes; Enter QUEEN MARGARET.
Heaven witness with me, I have wept for thine. R. Mar. So, now prosperity begins to mellow, Q. Mar. Bear with me, I am hungry for revenge, And drop into the rotten mouth of death.
And now I cloy me with beholding it. Here in these confines slily have I lurk’d,
Thy Edward he is dead, that kill'd my Edward ; 3 The country in which Richmond had taken refuge.
Thy other Edward dead to quit my Edward ; - Bishop of Ely.
Young York he is but boot 8, because both they Q. Eliz. Windy attornies to their client woes, Match not the high perfection of my loss.
Airy succeeders of intestate joys, Thy Clarence he is dead, that stabb’d my Edward; Poor breathing orators of miseries! And the beholders of this tragick play,
Let them have scope: though what they do impart The adulterate Hastings, Rivers, Vaughan, Grey, Help nothing else, yet do they ease the heart. Untimely smother'd in their dusky graves.
Duch. If so, then be not tongue-ty'd : go with me, Richard yet lives, hell's black intelligencer; And in the breath of bitter words let's smother Only reserv'd their factor to buy souls,
My cruel son, that thy two sweet sons smother'd. And send them thither: But at hand, at hand,
(Drum within. Ensues his piteous and unpitied end :
I hear his drum, - be copious in exclaims.
Enter King RICHARD, and his Train, marching. Cancel his bond of life, great God, I pray,
K. Rich. Who intercepts me in my expedition ? That I may live to say, The dog is dead!
Duch. O, she, that might have intercepted thee, Q. Eliz. O, thou didst prophesy the time would By strangling thee in her unhappy womb, come,
From all the slaughters, wretch, that thou hast done. That I should wish for thee to help me curse
Q. Eliz. Hid'st thou that forehead with a golden That bottled spider, that foul bunch-back'd toad.
crown, Q. Mar. I call’d thee then, vain flourish of my Where should be branded, if that right were right, fortune;
The slaughter of the prince that ow'd' that crown, I call'd thee then, poor shadow, painted queen; And the dire death of my poor sons and brothers? The presentation of but what I was,
Tell me, thou villain-slave, where are my children? The flattering index of a direful pageant,
Duch. Thou toad, thou toad, where is thy brother One heav'd a high, to be hurl'd down below:
Q. Eliz. Where is the gentle Rivers, Vaughan, To be the aim of every dangerous shot;
Grey ? A sign of dignity, a breath, a bubble ;
Duch. Where is kind Hastings? A queen in jest, only to fill the scene.
K. Rich. A flourish, trumpets! --strike alarum, Where is thy husband now? where be thy brothers ?
drums! Where be thy two sons? wherein dost thou joy? Let not the heavens hear these tell-tale women Who sues, and kneels, and says- God save the Rail on the Lord's anointed: Strike, I say. queen ?
[Flourish Aarums. Where be the bending peers that flatter'd thee? Either be patient, and entreat me fair, Where be the thronging troops that follow'd thee? Or with the clamorous report of war Decline all this, and see what now thou art. Thus will I drown your exclamations. For happy wife, a most distressed widow ;
Duch. Art thou my son ? For joyful mother, one that wails the name ; K. Rich. Ay; I thank heaven, my father, and For one being sued to, one that humbly sues;
yourself. For queen, a very caitiff crown'd with care ;
Duch. Then patiently hear my impatience. For one that scorn'd at me, now scorn'd of me; K. Rich. Madam, I have a touch of your conFor one being fear'd of all, now fearing one;
ditions For one commanding all, obey'd of none.
That cannot brook the accent of reproof.
Do, then; but I'll not hear. Having no more but thought of what thou wert, Duch. I will be mild and gentle in my words. To torture thee the more, being what thou art. K. Rich. And brief, good mother; for I am in Thou didst usurp my place; and dost thou not
haste. Usurp the just proportion of my sorrow?
Duch. Art thou so hasty ? I have staid for thee, Now thy proud neck bears half my burden'd yoke; Heaven knows, in torment and in agony. From which even here I slip my wearied head, K. Rich. And came I not at last to comfort you ? And leave the burden of it all on thee.
Duch. No, by the holy rood S, thou know'st it well, Farewell, York's wife, and queen of sad mis- Thou cam'st on earth to make the earth my hell. chance,
A grievous burden was thy birth to me; These English woes shall make me smile in France. Tetchy 4 and wayward was thy infancy;
Q. Eliz. O thou well skill'd in curses, stay a while, Thy school-days, frightful, desperate, wild, and And teach me how to curse mine enemies !
furious; Q. Mar. Forbear to sleep the night, and fast the Thy prime of manhood, daring, bold, and venturous; day;
Thy age confirm’d, proud, subtle, sly, and bloody, Compare dead happiness with living woe;
More mild, but yet more harmful, kind in hatred. Think that thy babes were fairer than they were, What comfortable hour canst thou name, And he that slew them, fouler than he is :
That ever grac'd me in thy company ? Bettering thy loss makes the bad-causer worse ; K. Rich. 'Faith none, but Humphrey Hour, that Revolving this will teach thee how to curse.
call'd your grace Q. Eliz. My words are dull, 0, quicken them To breakfast once, forth of my company. with thine!
If I be so disgracious in your sight, Q. Mar. Thy woes will make them sharp, and Let me march on, and not offend you, madam.
pierce like mine. [Erit Q. MARGARET. Strike up the drum. Duch. Why should calamity be full of words ?
• Disposition. 8 Thrown into the bargain. 9 Flaring.
* Touchy, fretful.
I prythee, hear me speak. Q. Eliz. What good is cover'd with the face of K. Rich. You speak too bitterly.
Hear me a word ; To be discover'd, that can do me good ? For I shall never speak to thee again.
K. Rich. The advancement of your children, gentle K. Rich. So.
lady. Duch. Either thou wilt die, by God's just ordi- Q. Eliz. Up to some scaffold, there to lose their nance,
heads? Ere from this war thou turn a conqueror ;
K. Rich. No, to the dignity and height of fortune, Or I with grief and extreme age shall perish The high imperial type of this earth's glory. And never look upon thy face again.
Q. Eliz. Flatter my sorrows with report of it; Therefore, take with thee my most heavy curse; Tell me, what state, what dignity, what honour, Which, in the day of battle, tire thee more, Canst thou demise 7 to any child of mine ? Than all the complete armour that thou wear'st! K. Rich. Even all I have ; ay, and myself and all, My prayers on the adverse party fight;
Will I withal endow a child of thine; And there the little souls of Edward's children So in the Lethe of thy angry soul Whisper the spirits of thine enemies,
Thou drown the sad remembrance of those wrongs, And promise them success and victory.
Which thou supposest, I have done to thee. Bloody thou art, bloody will be thy end;
Q. Eliz. Be brief, lest that the process of thy Shame serves thy life, and doth thy death attend.
[Exit. Last longer telling than thy kindness' date. Q. Eliz. Though far more cause, yet much less K. Rich. Then know, that from my soul I love spirit to curse
thy daughter. Abides in me; I say amen to her. [Going. Q. Elić. My daughter's mother thinks it with her K. Rich. Stay, madam, I must speak a word with
K. Rich. What do you think? Q. Eliz. I have no more sons of the royal blood, Q. Eliz. That thou dost love my daughter from For thee to inurder: for my daughters, Richard,
thy soul. They shall be praying nuns, not weeping queens ;
So, from thy soul's love, didst thou love her brothers, And therefore level not to hit their lives.
And, from my heart's love, I do thank thee for it. K. Rich. You have a daughter callid - Elizabeth, K. Rich. Be not so hasty to confound my meaning: Virtuous and fair, royal and gracious.
I mean, that with my soul I love thy daughter, Q. Eliz. And must she die for this? O, let her live, And do intend to make her queen of England. And I'll corrupt her manners, stain her beauty ; Q. Eliz. Well then, who dost thou mean shall be Slander myself, as false to Edward's bed;
her king ? Throw over her the veil of infamy:
K. Rich. Even he, that makes her queen : Who So she may live unscarr'd of bleeding slaughter,
else should be? I will confess she was not Edward's daughter.
Q. Elix. What, thou ? K.Rich. Wrong not her birth, she is of royal blood. K. Rich.
Even so : What think you Q. Eliz. To save her life, I'll say - she is
of it, madam ?
Q. Eliz. How canst thou woo her? K. Rich. Her life is safest only in her birth. K. Rich.
That I would learn of you, Q. Eliz. And only in that safety died her brothers. As one being best acquainted with her humour. K. Rich. Lo, at their births, good stars were Q. Eliz. And wilt thou learn of me? opposite.
Madam, with all my heart. Q. Eliz. No, to their lives bad friends were con- Q. Eliz. Send to her, by the man that slew her trary.
brothers, K. Rich. All unavoided 5 is the doom of destiny. A pair of bleeding hearts; thereon engrave, Q. Eliz. True, when avoided grace makes destiny: Edward, and York; then, haply 8, will she weep: My babes were destin'd to a fairer death,
Therefore present to her, — as sometime Margaret If grace had bless'd thee with a fairer life.
Did to thy father, steep'd in Rutland's blood, K. Rich. You speak, as if that I had slain my A handkerchief; which, say to her, did drairi cousins.
The purple sap from her sweet brother's body, Q. Eliz. Cousins, indeed; and by their uncle cozen'd And bid her wipe her weeping eyes withal. Of comfort, kingdom, kindred, freedom, life. If this inducement move her not to love, Whose hands soever lanc'd their tender hearts, Send her a letter of thy noble deeds; Thy head, all indirectly, gave direction :
Tell her, thou mad'st away her uncle Clarence, No doubt the murderous knife was dull and blunt, Her uncle Rivers; ay, and for her sake, Till it was whetted on thy stone-hard heart, Mad'st quick conveyance with her good aunt Anne. To revel in the entrails of my lambs.
K. Rich. You mock me, madam; this is not the way But that still 6 use of grief makes wild grief tame, To win your daughter. My tongue should to thy ears not name my boys, Q. Eliz.
There is no other way; Till that my nails were anchor'd in thine eyes; Unless thou couldet put on some other shape, And I, in such a desperate bay of death,
And not be Richard that hath done all this. Like a poor bark, of sails and tackling reft,
K. Rich. Say, that I did all this for love of her ? Rush all to pieces on thy rocky bosom.
Q. Eliz. Nay, then indeed, she cannot choose but K. Rich. Madam, so thrive I in my enterprize,
have thee, And dangerous success of bloody wars,
Having bought love with such a bloody spoil. As I intend more good to you and yours,
K. Rich. Look, what is done cannot be now Than ever you or yours by me were harm'd!
amended; 5 Unavoidable.
Men shall deal unadvisedly sometimes,
Q. Eliz. Plain, and not honest, is too harsh a style. Which after-hours give leisure to repent.
K. Rich. Your reasons are too shallow, and too If I did take the kingdom from your sons,
quick. To make amends, I'll give it to your daughter. Q. Eliz. O, no, my reasons are too deep and A grandam's name is little less in love,
dead; Than is the doting title of a mother!
Too deep and dead, poor infants, in their graves. They are as children, but one step below.
K. Rich. Harp not on that string, madam, that is Your children were vexation to your youth,
past. But mine shall be a comfort to your age.
Q. Eliz. Harp on it still shall I, till heart-s ogs The loss you have, is but - a son being king,
break. And, by that loss, your daughter is made queen. K. Rich. Now, by my George, my garter', and I cannot make you what amends I would,
my crown, Therefore accept such kindness as I can.
Q. Elix. Profan'd, dishonour'd, and the third Dorset, your son, that, with a fearful soul,
usurp'd. Leads discontented steps in foreign soil,
K. Rich. I swear. This fair alliance quickly shall call home
Q. Eliz. By nothing; for this is no oath. To high promotions and great dignity:
Thy George, profan’d, hath lost his holy honour; The king, that calls your beauteous daughter — wife, Thy garter, blemish’d, pawn'd his knightly virtue; Familiarly shall call thy Dorset — brother; Thy crown, usurp’d, disgrac'd his kingly glory: Again shall you be mother to a king,
If something thou wouldst swear to be believ'd, And all the ruins of distressful times
Swear then by something that thou hast not wrong'd. Repair'd with double riches of content.
K. Rich. Now, by the world, — What! we have many goodly days to see:
"Tis full of thy foul wrongs. The liquid drops of tears that you have shed,
K. Rich. My father's death, Shall come again, transform’d to orient pearl ;
Thy life hath that dishonour'd. Advantaging their loan, with interest
K. Rich. Then, by myself, Of ten-times double gain of happiness.
Thyself is self-misus'd. Go then, my mother, to thy daughter go;
K. Rich. Why then, by God, — Make bold her bashful years with your experience: Q. Eliz.
God's wrong is most of all, Prepare her ears to hear a wooer's tale :
If thou hadst fear'd to break an oath by him,
The unity, the king thy brother made,
If thou hadst fear'd to break an oath by him,
The imperial metal, circling now thy head, Bound with triumphant garlands will I come, Had grac'd the tender temples of my child; And lead thy daughter to a conqueror's bed! And both the princes had been breathing here, To whom I will retail my conquest won,
Which now, two tender bed-fellows for dust, And she shall be sole vict'ress, Cæsar's Cæsar. Thy broken faith hath made a prey for worms. Q. Elis. What were I best to say ? her father's What canst thou swear by now? brother
By the time to come. Would be her lord? Or shall I say, her uncle? Q. Eliz. That thou hast wrong'd in the time o'er. Or, he that slew her brothers and her uncles ?
past; Under what title shall I woo for thee,
For I myself have many tears to wash
K. Rich. Infer fair England's peace by this alliance. Ungovernd youth, to wail it in their age :
Old barren plants, to wail it in their age: K. Rich. Tell her, the king, that may command, Swear not by time to come ; for that thou hast entreats.
Misus'd, ere us’d, by times ill-us'd o'er-past. Q. Eliz. That at her hands, which the king's King K. Rich. As I intend to prosper, and repent, forbids. 9
So thrive I in my dangerous attempt K. Rich. Say, she shall be a high and mighty queen. Of hostile arms! myself myself confound ! Q. Eliz. To wail the title, as her mother doth. Heaven, and fortune, bar me happy hours ! K. Rich. Say, I will love her everlastingly. Day yield me not thy light; nor, night, thy rest ! Q. Eliz. But how long shall that title, ever, last? Be opposite all planets of good luck K. Rich. Sweetly in force unto her fair life’s end. To my proceeding, if, with pure heart's love, Q. Eliz. But how long fairly shall her sweet life Immaculate devotion, holy thoughts, last?
I tender not thy beauteous princely daughter ! K. Rich. As long as heaven, and nature, lengthensit. In her consists my happiness, and thine; Q. Elit. As long as hell, and Richard, likes of it. Without her, follows to myself, and thee, K. Rich. Say, I, her sovereign, am her subject low. Herself, the land, and many a christian soul, Q. Elis. But she, your subject, loathes such sove- Death, desolation, ruin, and decay : reignty.
It cannot be avoided, but by this; K. Rich. Be eloquent, in my behalf, to her. It will not be avoided, but by this. Q. Eliz. An honest tale speeds best, being plainly Therefore, dear mother, (I must call you so,) told.
Be the attorney of my love to her.
Not my deserts, but what I will deserve:
1 Thc ensigns of the Order of the Garter.