William Shakespeare.

The dramatic works of William Shakspeare... embracing a life of the poet, and notes, original and selected (Volume 4) online

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Ay an usurper."
VOL. iv. 43


4 Begin your suits anew, and sue to him.

[Tears the petition,
4 Away, base cullions! Suffolk, let them go.

* AIL Come, let s be gone. [Exeunt Petitioners.

* Q. Mar. My lord of Suffolk, say, is this the guise,

* Is this the fashion in the court of England ?

* Is this the government of Britain s isle,

* And this the royalty of Albion s king ?

* What, shall king Henry be a pupil still,

* Under the surly Gloster s governance ?

* Am I a queen in title and in style,

* And must be made a subject to a duke ?

4 I tell thee, Poole, when in the city Tours
4 Thou rann st a tilt in honor of my love,
4 And stol st away the ladies hearts of France,
4 I thought king Henry had resembled thee,
4 In courage, courtship, and proportion:
4 But all his mind is bent to holiness,

* To number Ave-Maries on his beads ;

* His champions arc the prophets and apostles,

* 1 1 is weapons, holy saws of sacred writ ;

* His study is his tilt-yard, and his loves

* Arc brazen images of canonized saints.


* I would the college of cardinals

* Would choose him pope, and carry him to Rome,

* And set the triple crown upon his head ;

* That were a state fit for his holiness.

4 Suff. Madam, be patient ; as I was cause
4 Your highness came to England, so will I
4 In England work your grace s full content.

* Q. Mar. Beside the haught protector, have we


* The imperious churchman ; Somerset, Buckingham,

* And grumbling York ; and not the least of these,
*But can do more in England than the king.

* Sujf. And he of these, that can do most of all,

* Cannot do more in England than the Nevils.

* Salisbury and Warwick are no simple peers.

4 Q. Mar. Not all these lords do vex me half so


4 As that proud dame, the lord protector s wife.
6 She sweeps it through the court with troops of ladies,
4 More like an empress than duke Humphrey s wife.
Strangers in court do take her for the queen ;

* She bears a duke s revenues on her back.

* And in her heart she scorns her poverty.

* Shall I not live to be avenged on her ?

* Contemptuous, base-born callat as she is,

i She vaunted mongst her minions t other day,
The very train of her worst wearing-gown
Was better worth than all my father s lands,

* Till Suffolk gave two dukedoms for his daughter.

Suff. Madam, myself have limed a bush for her ; l

* And placed a quire of such enticing birds,

* That she will light to listen to the lays,

* And never mount to trouble you again.

* So, let her rest; and, madam, list to me ;

* For I am bold to counsel you in this.

* Although we fancy not the cardinal,

* Yet must we join with him, and with the lords,

* Till we have brought duke Humphrey in disgrace.

* As for the duke of York, this late complaint

* Will make but little for his benefit.

* So, one by one, we ll weed them all at last,

* And you yourself shall steer the happy helm.

Enter KING HENRY, YORK, and SOMERSET, conversing
with him; DUKE and DUCHESS of GLOSTER, CAR

K. Hen. For my part, noble lords, I care not which ;
Or Somerset, or York, all s one to me.

Yor&. If York have ill demeaned himself in France,
Then let him be denayed 2 the regentship.

Som. If Somerset be unworthy of the place,
Let York be regent; I will yield to him.

1 In the original play :

" I have set limetwigs that will entangle them."

2 Denay is frequently used instead of deny among the old wnters.


War. Whether your grace be worthy, yea, or no,
Dispute not that ; York is the worthier.

Car. Ambitious Warwick, let thy betters speak.
War. The cardinal s not my better in the field.
Buck. All in this presence are thy betters, Warwick.
War. Warwick may live to be the best of all.

* Sal. Peace, son; and show some reason, Buck


* Why Somerset should be preferred in this.

* Q. Mar. Because the king, forsooth, will have it so.
4 Glo. Madam, the king is old enough himself

To give his censure ; 1 these are no women s matters.

Q. Mar. If he be old enough, what needs your grace
To be protector of his excellence ?

Glo. Madam, I am protector of the realm ;
And, at his pleasure, will resign my place.

Suff. Resign it then, and leave thine insolence.
4 Since thou wert king (as who is king, but thou ?)
4 The commonwealth hath daily run to wreck ;

* The dauphin hath prevailed beyond the seas,

* And all the peers and nobles of the realm

* Have been as bondmen to thy sovereignty.

* Car. The commons hast thou racked ; the clergy s


* Are lank and lean with thy extortions.

* Som. Thy sumptuous buildings, and thy wife s


* Have cost a mass of public treasury.

* Buck. Thy cruelty in execution,
*Upon offenders, hath exceeded law,

* Arid left thee to the mercy of the law.

* Q. Mar. Thy sale of offices, and towns in France,

* If they were known, as the suspect is great,

* Would make thee quickly hop without thy head.

[Exit GLOSTER. The Queen drops her fan.
Give me my fan. What, minion ! can you not ?

[Gives the Duchess a box on the ear
1 I cry you mercy, madam ; was it you ?

1 Censure here means simply judgment or opinion ; the sense in which
it was used by all the writers of the time.

SC. 111.] KING HENRY VI. 341

4 Duck. Was t I ? Yea, 1 it was, proud French

c Could I come near your beauty with my nails,
Pd set my ten commandments in your face.

K. Hen. Sweet aunt, be quiet ; twas against her will.

4 Ditch. Against her will ! Good king, look to t in time ;
4 She ll hamper thee, and dandle thee like a baby.

* Though in this place most master wear no breeches,
She shall not strike dame Eleanor unrevenged.

[Exit Duchess.

* Buck. Lord cardinal, I will follow Eleanor,
*And listen after Humphrey, how he proceeds.

* She s tickled now ; her fume needs no spurs ;

* She ll gallop fast enough to her destruction.


Re-enter GLOSTER.

* Glo. Now, lords, my choler being overblown,

* With walking once about the quadrangle,

* I come to talk of commonwealth affairs.

* As for your spiteful, false objections,

* Prove them, and I lie open to the law ;
*But God in mercy so deal with my soul,

* As I in duty love my king and country !

* But, to the matter that we have in hand.

* I say, my sovereign, York is meetest man

* To be your regent in the realm of France.

* Suff. Before we make election, give me leave
4 To show some reason, of no little force,

4 That York is most unmeet of any man.

4 York. Pll tell thee, Suffolk, why I am unmeet.
4 First, for I cannot flatter thee in pride ;

* Next, if I be appointed for the place,

* My lord of Somerset will keep me here,

* Without discharge, money, or furniture,

* Till France be won into the dauphin s hands.

* Last time I danced attendance on his will,

* Till Paris was besieged, famished, and lost.

* War. That I can witness ; and a fouler fact

* Did never traitor in the land commit.


Suff. Peace, headstrong Warwick !

War. Image of pride, why should I hold my peace ?

Enter Servants of SUFFOLK, bringing in HORNER and


Suff. Because here is a man accused of treason :
Pray God, the duke of York excuse himself!

* York. Doth any one accuse York for a traitor ?

* K. Hen. What mean st thou, Suffolk? tell me;
what are these ?

6 Suff. Please it your majesty, this is the man
4 That doth accuse his master of high treason.
4 His words were these ; that Richard duke of York
4 Was rightful heir unto the English crown ;
1 And that your majesty was an usurper.

K. Hen. Say, man, were these thy words ?

Hor. An t shall please your majesty, I never said
nor thought any such matter. God is my witness, I
am falsely accused by the villain.

4 Pet. By these ten hones, my lords, [Holding up
4 his hands.] he did speak them to me in the garret
4 one night, as we were scouring my lord of York s



York. Base dunghill villain, and mechanical,
* I ll have thy head for this thy traitor s speech.
4 I do beseech your royal majesty,
4 Let him 1m vc all the rigor of the law.

Hor. Alas, my lord, hang me, if ever I spake the
words. My accuser is my prentice ; and when I did
correct him for his fault the other day, he did vow upon
his knees he would be even with me. I have good
witness of this ; therefore, I beseech your majesty, do
not cast away an honest man for a villain s accusation.

K. Hen. Uncle, what shall we say to this in law ?

4 Glo. This doom, my lord, if I may judge.
4 Let Somerset be regent o er the French,
4 Because in York this breeds suspicion ;
1 And let these have a day appointed them
For single combat in convenient place ;


For he hath witness of his servant s malice.

1 This is the law, and this duke Humphrey s doom.

K. Hen. Then be it so. My lord of Somerset,
We make your grace lord regent o er the French. 1

Som. I humbly thank your royal majesty.

HOT. And I accept the combat willingly.

Pet Alas, my lord, I cannot fight ; * for God s sake,

* pity my case ! the spite of man prevaileth against me.
*O Lord, have mercy upon me! I shall never be able

* to fight a blow. O Lord, my heart !

Glo. Sirrah, or you must fight, or else be hanged.
; K. Hen. Away with them to prison ; and the day
4 Of combat shall be the last of the next month.

* Come, Somerset, we ll see thee sent away. [Exeunt.

SCENE IV. The same. The Duke of Gloster s




* Hume. Come, my masters ; the duchess, I tell you,

* expects performance of your promises.

* Baling. Master Hume, we are therefore provided.
*Will her ladyship behold and hear our exorcisms? 2

* Hume. Ay ; what else ? fear you not her courage.

* Baling. I have heard her reported to be a woman
*of an invincible spirit. But it shall be convenient,

* master Hume, that you be by her aloft, while we be

* busy below ; and so, I pray you, go in God s name,
*and leave us. [Exit HUME.] i Mother Jourdain, be
you prostrate, and grovel on the earth ; * John

* Southwell, read you ; and let us to our work.

1 Theobald inserted these two lines from the old play, because without
them the king has not declared his assent to Gloster s opinion; and the
duke of Somerset is made to thank him for his regency before the king has
deputed him to it. Malone supposes that Shakspeare thought Henry s
consent to Humphrey s doom might be expressed by a nod ; and therefore
omits the lines.

2 By exorcise Shakspeare invariably means to raise spirits, and not to
lay them.


Enter Duchess, above.

Duck. Well said, rny masters ; and welcome all
To this geer ; the sooner the better.

* Baling. Patience, good lady; wizards know their

times ;

Deep night, dark night, the silent 1 of the night,
The time of night when Troy was set on tire ;
4 The time when screech-owls cry, and ban-dogs howl,
4 And spirits walk, and ghosts break up their graves,

That time best fits the work we have in hand.
Madam, sit you, and fear not ; whom we raise,
We w 7 ill make fast within a hallowed verge.

[Here the ij perform the ceremonies appertaining,
and make the circle ; BOLINGBROKE, or
SOUTHWELL, reads, Conjuro te, &c. It
thunders and lightens terribly ; then the
Spirit riseth.

* Spir. Adsum.

* M. Jourd. Asmath,

*By the eternal God, whose name and power

* Thou tremblest at, answer that I shall ask ;

*For, till tliou speak, them slialt not pass from hence.

* Spir. Ask what tliou wilt. That I had said and

done !

Boling. First, of the king. What shall of him be
come ? [Reading out of a paper.

Spir. The duke yet lives, that Henry shall depose ;
But him outlive, and die a violent death.

[As the Spirit speaks, SOUTHWELL writes the

1 The old quarto reads, " the silence of the night." The variation ot

the copies is worth notice :

" Dark night, dread night, the silence of the night,
Wherein the furies mask in hellish troops,
Send up, I charge you, from Cocytus lake
The spirit of Ascalon to come to me,
To pierce the bowels of this centric earth,
And hither come in twinkling of an eye !
Ascalon, ascend, ascend !

Warburton, in a learned hut erroneous note, wished to prove that an

interhmar night was meant. Steevens has justly observed that silent is

here used by the Poet as a substantive.


Boling. Wliatfate awaits the duke of Suffolk ?

Spir. By water shall he die, and take his end.

Bo-ling. What shall befall the duke of Somerset ?

Spir. Let him shun castles ;
Safer shall he be upon the sandy plains,
Than where castles mounted stand.
t Have done, for more I hardly can endure.

Soling. Descend to darkness, and the burning lake ;
i False fiend, avoid !

[Thunder and lightning. Spirit descends.

Enter YORK and BUCKINGHAM, hastily, with their
Guards, and others.

York. Lay hands upon these traitors, and their


6 Beldame, I think we watched you at an inch.
4 What, madam, are you there ? The king and com

4 Are deeply indebted for this piece of pains ;
My lord protector will, I doubt it not,
See you well guerdoned for these good deserts.

* Duch. Not half so bad as thine to England s king,

* Injurious duke ; that threat s! where is no cause.

* Buck. True, madam, none at all. What call you

this ? [Showing her the papers.

* Away with them ; let them be clapped up close,

* And kept asunder. You, madam, shall with us :

* Stafford, take her to thee.

[Exit Duchess, from above.
We ll see your trinkets here all forth-coming ;
All. Away !

[Exeunt Guards, with SOUTH., BOLING., &c.

* York. Lord Buckingham, me thinks you watched

her well.

* A pretty plot, well chosen to build upon !
Now, pray, my lord, let s see the devil s writ.

What have we here ? [Reads.

The duke yet lives, that Henry shall depose ;
But him outlive, and die a violent death.
VOL. iv. 44


* Why, this is just,

* Aio te, JEacida, Romanos vincere posse.
Well, to the rest :

Tell me, what fate awaits the duke of Suffolk ?
By water shall he die, and take his end.
What shall betide the duke of Somerset ?
Let him shun castles ;
Safer shall he be upon the sandy plains,
Than where castles mounted stand.

* Come, come, my lords ;

* These oracles are hardily attained,

* And hardly understood.

4 The king is now in progress toward Saint Albans,
4 With him the husband of this lovely lady.
4 Thither go these news, as fast as horse can carry them ;
4 A sorry breakfast for my lord protector.

4 Buck. Your grace shall give me leave, my lord of

4 To be the post, in hope of his reward.

4 York. At your pleasure, my good lord. Who s
4 within there, ho !

Enter a Servant.

4 Invite my lords of Salisbury, and Warwick,
4 To sup with me to-morrow night. Away !



SCENE I. Saint Albans.

Cardinal, and SUFFOLK, with Falconers hollaing.

4 Q. Mar. Believe me, lords, for flying at the brook, 1
4 1 saw not better sport these seven years day.

i The falconer s term for hawking at water-fowl.


4 Yet, by your leave, the wind was very high ;
And, ten to one, old Joan had not gone oat. 1

i K. Hen. But what a point, my lord, your falcon made,
1 And what a pitch she flew above the rest !
c To see how God in all his creatures works !

* Yea, man and birds are fain of climbing high.

Sujf. No marvel, an it like your majesty,
My lord protector s hawks to tower so well ;
They know their master loves to be aloft,
*And bears his thoughts above his falcon s pitch.

i Glo. My lord, tis but a base, ignoble mind
4 That mounts no higher than a bird can soar.

4 Car. I thought as much; he d be above the clouds.

Glo. Ay, my lord cardinal ; how think you by

that ? "
Were it not good, your grace could fly to heaven ?

* K. Hen. The treasury of everlasting joy !

c Car. Thy heaven is on earth ; thine eyes and


Beat on a crown, 2 the treasure of thy heart ;
Pernicious protector, dangerous peer,
That smooth st it so with kino; and commonweal !


4 Glo. What, cardinal, is your priesthood grown
peremptory ?

* Tanttene animis ccelestibus irce ?

i Churchmen so hot ? Good uncle, hide such malice ;
4 With such holiness can you do it ?

c Suff. No malice, sir ; no more than well becomes
c So good a quarrel, and so bad a peer.

1 Johnson was informed that the meaning here is, " the wind being high,
it was ten to one that the old hawk had flown quite away ; a trick which
hawks often play their masters in windy weather." But surely not going
out cannot signify not coming home. Dr. Percy s interpretation is entirely
opposed to this : he explains it, " The wind was so high it was ten to one
that old Joan would not have taken herjlight at the game. 7 Latham s Falcon
ry confirms Dr. Percy s explanation. " When you shall come afterward to
fly her she must be altogether guided and governed by her stomacke ; yea,
she will be kept and also lost by the same ; for let her faile of that never
so little, and every puff of wind will blow her away from you ; nay, if there
be no wind stirring, yet she will wheele and sinke away from him and from
his voice, that all the time before had lured and trained her up." Booke
i. p. 60, Ed. 1633.

2 i. e. thy mind is working on a crown.


Glo. As who, my lord ?

Swff. Why, as you, my lord ;

An t like your lordly lord protectorship.

Glo. Why, Suffolk, England knows thine insolence.

Q. Mar. And thy ambition, Gloster.

K. Hen. I pr ythee, peace,

Good queen ; and whet not on these furious peers,
For blessed are the peacemakers on earth.

Car. Let me be blessed for the peace I make,
Against this proud protector, with my sword !

Glo. Faith, holy uncle, would tw r ere come to that!

[Aside to the Cardinal.

4 Car. Marry, when thou dar st. [Aside.

6 Glo. Make up no factious numbers for the matter,

4 In thine own person answer thy abuse. [Aside.

Car. Ay, where thou dar st not peep ; an if thou
dar st,

5 This evening, on the east side of the grove. [Aside.

4 K. Hen. How now, my lords ?
i Car. Believe me, cousin Gloster 5

Had not your man put up the fowl so suddenly,
We had had more sport. Come with thy two-hand-
sword. 1 [Aside to GLO.
Glo. True, uncle.

Car. Are you advised? the east side of the grove?
Glo. Cardinal, I am with you. [Aside.

K. Hen. Why, how now, uncle Gloster ?

i Glo. Talking of hawking ; nothing else, my


Now, by God s mother, priest, I ll shave your crown
for this,

* Or all my fence shall fail. [Aside.

* Car. Medice teipsum ; \ [A 1

i Protector, see to t well, protect yourself. 5

K. Hen. The winds grow high ; so do your
stomachs, lords.

* How irksome is this music to my heart !

1 The " two-hand-sword " was sometimes called the long-sword, and in
common use before the introduction of the rapier. In the original play,
the cardinal desires Gloster to bring his sivord and buckler.


* When such strings jar, what hope of harmony ?

* I pray, my lords, let me compound this strife.

Enter an Inhabitant of Saint Albans, crying A
Miracle ! *

Glo. What means this noise ?
Fellow, what miracle dost thou proclaim ?

Inhab. A miracle ! a miracle !

Stiff. Come to the king, and tell him what miracle.

Inhab. Forsooth, a blind man at Saint Alban s shrine,
Within this half hour, hath received his sight ;
A man that ne er saw in his life before.

4 K. Hen. Now, God be praised ! that to believing

Gives light in darkness, comfort in despair !

Enter the Mayor of Saint Albans, and his Brethren ;
and SIMPCOX, borne between two Persons in a chair ;
his Wife, and a great Multitude, following.

* Car. Here come the townsmen on procession,

* To present your highness with the man.

* K. Hen. Great is his comfort in this earthly vale,

* Although by his sight his sin be multiplied.

* Glo. Stand by, my masters ; bring him near the


* His highness pleasure is to talk with him.

* K. Hen. Good fellow, tell us here the circum


* That we for thee may glorify the Lord.

What, hast thou been long blind, and now restored ?
Simp. Born blind, an t please your grace.
Wife. Ay, indeed, was he.
Suff. What woman is this ?

1 This scene is founded on a story which sir Thomas More has related,
and which he says was communicated to him by his father. The impostor s
name is not mentioned; but he was detected by Humphrey duke of
Gloster, and in the manner here represented. See More s Works, p. 134,
Edit 1557.


Wife. His wife, an t like your worship.

Glo. Hadst thou been his mother, thou couldst

have better told.

K. Hen. Where wert thou born ?
Simp. At Berwick in the north, an t like your grace.
4 K. Hen. Poor soul ! God s goodness hath been

great to thee.

4 Let never day nor night unhallowed pass,
4 But still remember what the Lord hath done.

* Q. Mar. Tell me, good fellow, cam st thou here

by chance,

* Or of devotion, to this holy shrine ?

4 Simp. God knows, of pure devotion ; being called
A hundred times, and oftener, in my sleep
By good saint Alban ; who said, Simpcox, come ;
4 Come, offer at my shrine, and I will help thee.

* Wife. Most true, forsooth ; and many time and oft

* Myself have heard a voice to call him so.

Car. What, art thou lame ?

Simp. Ay, God Almighty help me !

Suff. How cam st thou so ?

Simp. A fall of a tree.

Wife. A plum-tree, master.

Glo. How long hast thou been blind ?

Simp. O, born so, master.

Glo. What, and wouldst climb a tree ?

Simp. But that in all my life, when I was a youth.

* Wife. Too true ; and bought his climbing very


* Glo. Mass, thou lov dst plums well, that wouldst

venture so.
4 Simp. Alas, good master, my wife desired some

4 And made me climb, with danger of my life.

* Glo. A subtle knave ! but yet it shall not serve.
4 Let me see thine eyes. wink now ; now open

4 In my opinion yet thou see st not well.

4 Simp. Yes, master, clear as day ; I thank God and
saint Alban.


Glo. Say st thou me so ? What color is this
cloak of?

Simp. Red, master; red as blood.

Glo. Why, that s well said. What color is my
gown of?

Simp. Black, forsooth; coal-black, as jet.

K. Hen. Why, then, thou know st what color jet
is of?

Suff. And yet, I think, jet did he never see.

Glo. Bat cloaks, and gowns, before this day, a many.

Wife. Never, before this day, in all his life.

Glo. Tell me, sirrah, what s my name ?

Simp. Alas, master, I know not.

Glo. What s his name ?

Simp. I know not.

Glo. Nor his?

Simp. No, indeed, master.

Glo. What s thine own name ?

Simp. Saunder Simpcox, an if it please you, master.

Glo. Then, Saunder, sit thou there, the lyingest


In Christendom. If thou hadst been born blind,
Thou mightst as well have known our names, as thus
To name the several colors we do wear.
Sight may distinguish of colors ; but suddenly

To nominate them all, s impossible.

My lords, Saint Alban here hath done a miracle ;
And would ye not think that cunning to be great,
That could restore this cripple to his legs again ?

Simp. O, master, that you could !

Glo. My masters of Saint Albans, have you not
Beadles in your town, and things called whips ?

May. Yes, my lord, if it please your grace.

Glo. Then send for one presently.

May. Sirrah, go fetch the beadle hither straight.

[Exit an Attendant

Glo. Now fetch me a stool hither by and by.
[A stool brought out.~\ Now, sirrah, if you mean to
save yourself from whipping, leap me over this stool,
and run away.


Simp. Alas, master, I am not able to stand alone
You go about to torture me in vain.

Re-enter Attendant ivith the Beadle.

Glo. Well, sir, we must have you find your legs.
Sirrah beadle, whip him till he leap over that same

Bead. I will, my lord. Come on, sirrah ; off with
your doublet quickly.

Simp. Alas, master, what shall I do ? I am not able
to stand.

[After the Beadle hath hit him once, he leaps
over the stool, and runs away; and the people
follow, and cry, A miracle !

* K. Hen. O God, seest thou this, and bear st so

long !

* Q. Mar. It made me laugh to see the villain run.

* Glo. Follow the knave ; and take this drab away.

* Wife. Alas, sir, we did it for pure need.

Glo. Let them be whipped through every market

Till they come to Berwick, whence they came.

Online LibraryWilliam ShakespeareThe dramatic works of William Shakspeare... embracing a life of the poet, and notes, original and selected (Volume 4) → online text (page 25 of 38)