William Shakespeare.

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The French fight coldly, and retire themselves.

King John.

Ah me 1 this tyrant fever burns me up,
And will not let me welcome this good news.
Set on toward Swinttead ; to my litter straight:
Weakness posseiseth me, and 1 am faint.


/; IV. The same. Another part of the

Fnter Salitbury, Pembroke, Bigot, and other*.

I did not think the king so stor'd with friend*.


Up once again ; put spirit in the French:
If they miscarry, we miscarry too.


That misbegotten devil, Fnulconbridge,
In spite of spite, alone upholds the day.

They say, king John sore sick hath left the

ey say,

Enter Melun wounded, and led by Soldiers.

Lead me to the revolts of England here.

When we were happy we'had other name*.

It is the count Melun.


Wounded to death


Fly, noble English ; you are bought and sold :
Unthread the rude eye of rebellion,
And welcome home again discarded faith.
Seek out king John, and fall before his feet
For if the French be lords of this loud day,
lie means to recompense the pains you take,
By cutting off your heads. Thus hath he sworn.
And I with him, and many more with me,
Upon the altar at Saint Edmund's Bury ;
Even on that altar, where we swore to you
Dear amity and everlasting love.

May this be possible? may this be true?

Have I not hideous death within my view,
Retaining but a quantity of life,
Which bleeds away, even as a form of wax
Resolveth from his figure 'gainst the fire ?
What in the world should make me now deceive,
Since I must lose the use of all deceit?
Why should I then be false, since it is true
That 1 must die here, and live hence by truth?
I say again, if Lewis do win the day,
He is forsworn, if e'er those eyes of yours
Behold another day break in the east : [breath
But even this night, whose black contagious
Already smokes about the burning crest
Of the old, feeble, and day-wearied sun,
Even this ill night, your breathing shall expire,
Paying the fine of rated treachery,
Even with a treacherous fine of all your lives.
If Lewis by your assistance win the day.
Commend me to one Hubert, with your king ;
The love of him, and this respect besides,
For that my grandsire was an Englishman,
Awakes my conscience to confess all this.
In lieu whereof, I pray you, bear me hence
From forth the noise and rumour of the field ;
Where I may think the remnant of my thoughts
In peace, and part this body and my soul
With contemplation and devout desires.


4 o 4


ACT v. Sc. nr.


We do believe thee, and "beshrew my soul,
But I do love the favour and the form
Of this most fair occasion, by the which
We will untread the steps of damned flight;
And, like a bated and retired flood,
Leaving our rankness and irregular course,
Stoop low within those bounds we have o'er-
And calmly run on in obedience, [look'd,

Even to our ocean, to our great King John.
My arm shall give thee help to bear thee hence,
For I do see the cruel pangs of death
Right in thine eye Away, my friends ! New

And happy newness, that intends old right.

[Exeunt, leading QtTMflvn, .

SCEtfE V. The same. The French Camp.
Enter Lewis and his Train.

The sun of heaven, Rethought, was loath to ;


But stay'd, and made the western welkin blush,
When English measur'd backward their own


'. In faint retire. O ! bravely came we off,
When with a volley of our needless shot,
After such bloody toil we bid good night,
And wound our tattering colours clearly up,
Last in the field, and almost lords of it !

Knter a Mt'sscitgrr.

Where is my prince, the Dauphin ?

Lewis. ,

Here. What news?

The count Melun is slain: the English lords,
By his persuasion, are again fallen off;
And your supply, which you have wish'd so long,
Are cast away, and sunk, on Goodwin sands.


Ah, foul shrewd news! Beslirew thy very
I did not think to be so sad to-night, [heart !
As this hath made me. Who was he, that said, :
King John did fly an hour or two before
The stumbling night did part our weary powers ?
i Messenger.

Whoever spoke it, it is true, my lord.


Well ; keep good quarter, and good care to-
The day shall not be up so soon as I, [night :
To try the fair adventure of bHMETOVg , ;

SCEXI-: VI. An open Place in the Neighbour-
hood of Swinstead- Abbey.

Enter the Bastard and Hubert, severally.


Who's there? speak, ho ! speak quickly, or I


A friend. What art thou ?

Of the part of England.
Whither dost thou go ?


What's that to thee ? Why may not I demand
Of thine affairs, as well as thou of mine ?


Hubert, I think.


Thou hast a perfect thought:
I will, upon till hazards, well believe
Thou art my friend, that know'st my tongue so
Who art thou ? [well.


Who thou wilt : and, if thou please,
Thou may'st befriend me so much, as to think
I come one way of the Plantagenets.

Unkind remembrance ! thou, and endless


Have done me shame : brave soldier, pardon m<*,
That any accent breaking from thy tongue
Should 'scape the true acquaintance of mine ear.


Come, come; sans compliment, what news
abroad ?


Why, here walk I, in.the black brow of night,
To find you out.

Brief, then ; and what's the news ?


O ! my sweet sir, news fitting to the night,
Black, fearful, comfortless, and horrible.


Show me the very wound of this ill news :
I am no woman ; I'll not swoon at it.


The king, 1 fear, is poison'd by a monk :
I left him almost speechless, and broke out
To acquaint you with this evil, that you miglit
The better arm you to the sudden time,
Than if you had at leisure known of this.

How did he take it ? who did taste to him ?


A monk, I tell you ; a resolved villain,
Whose bowels suddenly burst out : the king
Yet speaks, and peradventure, may recover.

Whom didst thou leave to tend his majesty ?

Why, know you not ? the lords are all come


And brought prince Henry in their company ;
At whose request the king hath pardon'd them,
And they are all about his majesty.


Withhold thine indignation, mighty heaven,
And tempt us not to bear above our power.
I'll tell thee, Hubert, half my power this night,
Passing these flats, are taken by the tide ;
These Lincoln washes have devoured them :
Myself well-mounted hardly have escap'd.
Away, before: conduct me to the king ;
I doubt, he will be dead or ere I com f^ xeunt

The Orchard of Xwinstead-Abbey.
Enter Prince Henry, Salisbury, and Bigot.

Prince Henry.

It is too late : the life of all his blood
Is touch'd corruptibly ; and his pure brain
(Which some suppose the soul's frail dwelling-


Doth, by the idle comments that it makes,
Foretell the ending of mortality. ^

ACT v. Sc. vn.



His highness yet doth speak ; and holds belief,
That being brought into the open air,
It would allay the burning quality
ut' that fell poison which assaileth him.

Let him be brought into the orchard here.
Doth he still rage ? [Kxlt Bigct.


He Is more patient
Than when you left him : even now he sung.

I'rince Henry.

O, vanity of sickness ! fierce extremes
In their continuance will not feel themselves.
Death, having prey'd upon the outward parts,
Leaves them, invisible ; and his siege is now
Against the mind, the which he pricks and


1 With many legions of strange fantasies,
Which, in their throngand press to that last hold,
Confound themselves. ' 1'is strange that death

should sing.

I am the cygnet to this pale faint swan,
Who chants a doleful hymn to his own death,
And from the organ-pipe of frailty sings
His soul and body to their lasting rest.

Be of good comfort, prince ; for you are born ,
To set a form upon that indigest,
Which he hath left so shapeless and so rude.

He-niter IH^t and Attendants, who bring in !
King John in a Chair.

Ay, marry, now my soul hath elbow-room ;
It would not out at windows, nor at doors.
There is so hot a summer in my bosom,
That all my bowels crumble up to dust :
I am a scribbled form, drawn with a pen
Upon a parchment, and against this fire
Do 1 shrink up.

Prince Henrr.

How fares your majesty ?

Poison'd, ill-fare"; dead, forsook, cast off, i
And none of you will bid the winter come,
To thrust his icy fingers in my maw ;
Nor let my kingdom's rivers take their course i
Through my burn'd bosom ; nor entreat the I


To make his bleak winds kiss my parched lips,
And comfort me with cold. I do not ask you

much :

I beg cold comfort ; and you are so strait,
And so iugrateful, you deny me that.

Prince Henry.

O, that there were some virtue m my tears,
That might relieve you !

Within me is a hell; and there the poison
Is, as a fiend, confin'd to tyrannize
On unreprievable condemned blood.

Enter the Bastard.


O ! I am scalded with my violent motion,
And spleen of speed to see your majesty.

King John.

O cousin ! thou art Come to set mine eye:
The tackle of my heart is crack 'd and burn'd ; :
And all the shrouds, wherewith my life should

Are turned to one thread, one little hair:
My heart hath one poor string to stay it by,
Which holds but till thy news be uttered,
And then all this thou seest is but a clod,
And model of confounded royalty.

The Dauphin is preparing hitherward, [him ;
Where, heaven he Knows, how we shall answer
For, in a night, the best part of my power,
As 1 upon advantage did remove,
Were in the washes, all unwarily,
Devoured by the unexpected flood.

[The K ing dies.

You breathe these "clead J news in as dead an

My liege ! my lord ! But now a king, now thus.

Even so must I run on, and even so stop.
What surety of the worid, what hope, what stay,
When this was now a king, and now is clay?


Art thou gone so? I do but stay behind,
To do the office for thee of revenge,
And then my soul shall wait on thee to heaven,
As it on earth hath been thy servant still
Now, now, you stars, that move in your right


Where be your powers? Show now your mended
And instantly return with me again, [faiths,
To push destruction, and perpetual shame,
Out of the weak door of our fainting land.
Straight let us seek, or straight we shall be
The Dauphin rages at our very heels, [sought:

It seems you know not, then, so much as we.
The cardinal Pandulph is within at rest,
Who half an hour since came from the Dauphin,
And brings from him such offers of our peace
As we with honour and respect may take,
With purpose presently to leave this war.


He will the rather do it, when he sees
Ourselves well sinewed to our defence.


Nay, it is in a manner done already ;
For many carriages he hath despatch'd
To the sea-side, and put his cause and quarrel
To the disposing of the cardinal :
With whom yourself, myself, and other lords,
If you think meet, this afternoon will post
To consummate this business happily.


Let it be so. And you, my noble prince,
With other princes that may best be spar'd,
Shall wait upon your father's funeral.

Prince Henry.

At Worcester must his body be interr/d ;
For so he will'd it.

B fhftiieir shall it then.
And happily may your sweet self put on
The lineal state and glory of the land :
To whom, with all submission, on my knee,
1 do bequeath my faithful services,
And true subjection everlastingly.

And the like tender of oUr love we make,
To rest without a spot for evermore.

I have a kind souT, C &at 'would give thanks,
And knows not how to do it, but with tears.



ACT i. Sc. i.


O I let us pay the time but needful woe,
Since it hath been beforehand with our griefs
This England never did, nor never shall,
Lie at the proud foot of a conqueror,
But when it first did help to wound itself.

Now these, her princes, are come home again,
Come the three corners of the world in arms,
And we shall shock them. Nought shall make

us rue,
If England to itself do rest but true.







Edmund of I.angley, Duke of York.
John o/G;xunt, Duke of Lancaster.
Henry Bolingbroke, Duke of Hereford.
Duke of Aumerle, Son to the Duke of York.
Thomas Mowbray, Duke of Norfolk.
Duke qf Surrey.

Earl of Salisbury. Earl Berkley.
Bushy, 7

Creatures to King Richard.

Bushy, 7
Bagot, >
Green, 3

Karl of Northumberland.
Henry Percy, his Son.


SCEXE I. London. A Room in the Palace.

Lord Ross. Lord Willoughby. Lord Fitz water.

Bishop of Carlisle. Abbot of Westminster.

Lord Marshal; and another Lord.

Sir Pierce o/Exton. Sir Stephen Scroop.

Captain of a Band of Welchmen.

Queen to King Richard.

Duchess of Gloster.

Duchess of York.

Lady attending the Queen.

Lords, Heralds, Officers, Soldiers, Gardeners,

Keeper, Messenger, Groom, and other Al~


SCENE, dispersedly in England and Waks.

On some apparent danger seen in him,
Aim'd at your highness ; no inveterate malice.

King Richard.

(~\l,ty John of Gaitni,t\me-liononr'A Lancaster,
" Hast thoti, according to thy oath and band,
Brought hither Henry Hereford, thy bold son ;
Here to make good the boisterous late appeal,
Which then our leisure would not let us hear,
Against theduke of Norfolk, Thomas Mowbray ?

I have, my liege.

King Richard.

Tell me, moreover^ hast thou sounded him,
If he appeal the duke on ancient malice,
Or worthily, as a good subject should,
On some known ground of treachery in him ?

As near as t could sift him on that argument,

Th* accuser,"and th 1 accused, freely speak.

[Exeunt some Attendants.
High-stomach'd are they both, and full of ire,
In rage deaf as the sea, hasty as fire.

Re'-enter Attendants with Bo/ingbroke and


Many years of happy days befal _
My gracious sovereign, my most loving liege !


Each day still better other's happiness ;
Until the heavens, envying earth's good hap,
Add an immortal title to your crown !

King Richard.

We thank you both : yet one but flatters us,
As well appeareth by the cause you come ;

Name IT.

A. i i. Sc. i.



Namely, to appeal each other of high treason
Cocuinof llt-n-fiird, what dost thou object
Against the duke of Norfolk, Thomas Mowbray f

i First, heaven be the record to my speech 1
In the devotion of a subject's love,
Tendering the precious safety of my prince,
And free from other misbegotten hate,
Come 1 appellant to this princely presence.
Now. Thomas Mowbray, do I turn to thee,
AIM! mark inv greeting well ; for what I speak,
My body shall make good upon this earth,
Or my divine soul answer it in heaven.
Thou art a traitor, and a miscreant ;

i Too good to be so, and too bad to live,
Since the more fair and crystal is the sky,

; The uglier seem the clouds that in it fly.
Once more, the more to aggravate the note,
With a foul traitor's name stuff I thy throat ;
And wish, (so please my sovereign) ere I move,
What my tongue speaks, my right-drawn sword
may prove.


Let not my cold words here accuse my zeal.
'Tis not the trial of a woman's war,

; The bitter clamour of two eager tongues,
Can arbitrate this cause betwixt us twain :
The blood is hot that must be cool'd for this ;
Yet can 1 not of such tame patience boast,
As to be hush'd, and naught at all to say. [me
First, the fair reverence of your highness curbs

' From giving reins and spurs to my free speech,
Which else would post, until it had return'd
These terms of treason doubled down his throat.
Setting aside his high blood's royalty,
And let him be no kinsman to my liege,
I do defy him, and I spit at him ;
Call him a slanderous coward, and a villain :
Which to maintain 1 would allow him odds,

. And meet him, were I tied to run a-foot
Even to the frozen ridges of the Alps,

1 Or any other ground inhabitable
Where ever Englishman durst set his foot.

' Mean time, let this defend my loyalty :
By all my hopes, most falsely doth he lie,


Pale trembling coward, there I throw my gage,
Disclaiming here the kindred of the king ;
And lay aside my high blood's royalty,
Which fear, not reverence, makes thee to except:
If guilty dread have left thee so much strength,

! As to take up mine honour's pawn, then stoop.
By that and all the rites of knighthood else,
Will I make good against thee, arm to arm,
What I have spoke, or thou canst worse devise.
No i

Besides, I say, and will in battle prove,

Or here, or elsewhere, to the furthest verge

That ever was sui vey'd by English eye,

That all the treasons, for these eighteen years

Complotted and contrived in this land,

Fetch from false Mowbray their first head and


Farther, I say, and farther will maintain
Upon his bad life to make all this good,
That he did plot the duke of Waster's deatli ;
Suggest his soon-believing adversaries,

Sluic'd out his innocent soul through streams

of blood:

Which blood, like sacrificing Abel's, cries,
Even from the tongueless caverns of the earth,
To me for justice, and rough chastisement ;
And, by the glorious worth of my descent,
Tins arm shall do it, or this life be spent.
King Richard.

How high a pitch his resolution soars !
Thomas of Norfolk, what say'st thou to this ?

O ! let my sovereign turn away his face,
And bid his ears a little while be deaf,
Till 1 have told this slander of his blood,
How God, and good men, hate so foul a liar.
King Richard.

Mowbray, impartial are our eyes, and ears :
Were he my brother, nay, my kingdom's heir,
As he is but my father's brother's son,
Now by my sceptre's awe I make a vow,
Such neighbour nearness to our sacred blood
Should nothing privilege him, nor partialize
The unstooping firmness of my upright soul.
He is our subject, Mowbray, so art thou :
Free speech and fearless, I to thee allow.

Then, Bolingbroke, as low as to thy heart,
Through the false passage of thy throat, thou


Three parts of that receipt I had for Calais,
Disburs'd I duly to his highness' soldiers :
The other part reserv'd I by consent ;
For that my sovereign liege was in my debt,
Upon remainder of a dear account,
Since last I went to France to fetch his queen.
Now, swallow down that lie. For Gloster's


I slew him not ; but to mine own disgrace,
Neglected my sworn duty in that case
For you, my noble lord of Lancaster,
The honourable father to my foe,
Once did I lay an ambush for your life,
A trespass that doth vex my grieved soul ;
But, ere I last receiv'd the sacrament,
I did confess it, and exactly begg'd

answer thee in any fair degree, ' [der,
Or chivalrous design of knightly trial :
> And, when I mount, alive may I not light,
< If I be traitor, or unjusjly fight !
m Richard.

What doth our cousin lay to Mowbray's
It must be great, that can inherit us [charge ?
80 much as of a thought of ill in him.


Look, what I speak, my life shall prove it
true : [nobles,

That Mowbray hath receiv'd eight thousand
In n.ime of lendings for your highness' soldiers,
The which he hath detain'd for lewd employ-
Like a false traitor, and injurious villain.

A recreant and most degenerate traitor ;

Which in myself I boldly will defend,

And interchangeably hurl down my gage

Upon this overweening traitor's foot,

To prove myself a loyal gentleman

Even in the best blood chamber'd in his bosom.

In haste whereof, most heartily I pray

Your highness to assign our trial day.

King Richard
Wrath-kindled gentleman, be rul'd by me.

' Let's purge this choler without letting blood:

' This we prescribe, though no physician ;

', Deep malice makes too deep incision.

! Forget, forgive; conclude, and be agreed ;

j Our doctors say this is no month to bleed.


ACT i. Sc. i.

Good uncle, let this end where it begun ;
We'll calm the duke of Norfolk, you your son.


To be a make-peace shall become my age
Throw down, my son, the duke of Norfolk's gage.

King R'chard.

And, Norfolk, throw down his.

When, Harry ? when?
Obedience bids, I should not bid again.

King Richard.
Norfolk, throw down ; we bid ; there is no boot.


Myself I throw, dread sovereign, at thy foot.
My life thou shall command, but not my shame :
The one my duty owes ; bui my fair name,
Despite of death that lives upon my grave,
To dark dishonour's use thou shall not have.
I am disgrac'd, impeach'd, and baffled here ;
Pierc'd to the soul with slander's venom'd spear ;
The which no balm can cure, but his heart-blood
Which breath'd this poison.

King Kichard.

Rage must be withstood.
Give me his gage: lions make leopards tame.

Yea, but not change his spots: take but my


And 1 resign my gage. My dear, dear lord,
The purest treasure mortal times afford
Is spotless reputation ; that away,
Men are but gilded loam, or painted clay.
A jewel in a ten times barr'd-up chest
Is a bold spirit in a loyal breast.
Mine honour is my life ; both grow in one :
Take honour from me, and my life is done.
Then, dear my liege, mine honour let me try ;
In that I live, and for that will I die.

King Richard.
Cousin, throw down your gage: do you begin.


O ! God defend my soul from such deep sin.
Shall 1 seem crest-fall'n in my father's sight ?
Or with pale beggar-fear impeach my height
Before this outdar'd dastard ? Ere my tongue
Shall wound mine honour with such feeble


Or sound so base a parle, my teeth shall tear
The slavish motive of recanting fear,
And spit it bleeding in his high disgrace, [face.
Where shame doth harbour, even in Mowbray's
[Exit Gaunt.
King Kichard.

We were not born to sue, but to command :
Which since we cannot do to make you friends,
Be ready, as your lives shall answer it,
At Coventry, upon Saint Lambert's day.
There shall your swords and lances arbitrate
The swelling difference of your settled hate :
Since we cannot atone you, we shall see
Justice design Ihe victor's chivalry.
Lord Marshal, command our officers at arms
Be ready to direct these home-alarms. [Exeunt.

SCEXE II. The same. A Room in the Duke
of Lancaster's Palace.

Enter Gaunt, and Duchess of Glostcr.


Aias ! the part I had in Gloster's blood
Doth more solicit me, than your exclaims,
To stir against the butchers of his life :
But since correction lieth in those hands,

Which made the fault that we cannot correct,
Put we our quarrel to the will of heaven :
Who when they see the hours ripe on earth,
W T ill rain hot vengeance on offenders' heads.

Finds brotherhood in thee no sharper spur ?
Hath love in thy old blood no living fire ?
Edward's seven sons, whereof thyself art one,
Were as seven phials of his sacred blood,
Or seven fair branches springing from one root:
Some of those seven are dried by nature's course,
Some of ihose branches by the destinies cut ;
But Thomas, my dear lord, my life, my Gloster,
One phial full of Edward's sacred blood.
One flourishing branch of his most royal root,
Is crack'd, and all the precious liquor spilt ;
Is hack'd down, and his summer leaves all faded,
By envy's hand, and murder's bloody axe.
Ah ! Gaunt, his blood was thine : that bed, that


That metal, that self-mould, that fashion 'd thee,
Made him a man ; and though thou liv'st, and


Yet art thou slain in him. Thou dost consent
In some large measure to thy father's death,
In that thou seest thy wretched brother die,
Who was the model of thy father's life.
Call it not patience, Gaunt, it is despair :
In suffering thus thy brother to be slaughter'd,
Thou show'st the naked pathway to thy life,
Teaching stern murder how to butcher thee.
That which in mean men we entitle patience,
Is pale cold cowardice in noble breasts.
What shall I say? to safeguard thine own life,
The best way is to venge my Gloster's death.

God's is the quarrel ; for God's substitute,
Ilis deputy anointed in his sight,
Hath caus'd his death ; the which, if wrongfully,
Let heaven revenge, for I may never lift
An angry arm against his minister.

Where then, alas ! may I complain myself?

To God, the widow's champion and defence. !

Why, then, I will. Farewell, old Gaunt,

Online LibraryWilliam ShakespeareThe dramatic works of William Shakespeare; → online text (page 76 of 211)