Front Page Titles (by Subject) ACT I. - The Tragedy of King Richard the Second
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ACT I. - William Shakespeare, The Tragedy of King Richard the Second 
The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (The Oxford Shakespeare), ed. with a glossary by W.J. Craig M.A. (Oxford University Press, 1916).
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London. A Room in the Palace.
EnterKing Richard,attended;John of Gaunt,and other Nobles.
Old John of Gaunt, time-honour’d Lancaster,
Hast thou, 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 the Duke of Norfolk, Thomas Mowbray?
I have, my liege.
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 I could sift him on that argument,
On some apparent danger seen in him
Aim’d at your highness, no inveterate malice.
Then call them to our presence: face to face,
And frowning brow to brow, ourselves will hear
The accuser and the 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, withBolingbrokeandMowbray.
Many years of happy days befall
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!
We thank you both: yet one but flatters us,
As well appeareth by the cause you come;
Namely, to appeal each other of high treason.
Cousin of Hereford, what dost thou object
Against the Duke of Norfolk, Thomas Mowbray?
First,—heaven be the record to my speech!—
In the devotion of a subject’s love,
Tendering the precious safety of my prince,
And free from other misbegotten hate,
Come I appellant to this princely presence.
Now, Thomas Mowbray, do I turn to thee,
And mark my 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;
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 I not of such tame patience boast
As to be hush’d and nought at all to say.
First, the fair reverence of your highness curbs me
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 I would allow him odds,
And meet him, were I tied to run afoot
Even to the frozen ridges of the Alps,
Or any other ground inhabitable,
Wherever Englishman durst set his foot.
Meantime 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.
I take it up; and by that sword I swear,
Which gently laid my knighthood on my shoulder,
I’ll answer thee in any fair degree,
Or chivalrous design of knightly trial:
And when I mount, alive may I not light,
If I be traitor or unjustly fight!
What doth our cousin lay to Mowbray’s charge?
It must be great that can inherit us
So much as of a thought of ill in him.
Look, what I speak, my life shall prove it true;
That Mowbray hath receiv’d eight thousand nobles
In name of lendings for your highness’ soldiers,
The which he hath detain’d for lewd employments,
Like a false traitor and injurious villain.
Besides I say and will in battle prove,
Or here or elsewhere to the furthest verge
That ever was survey’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 spring.
Further I say and further will maintain
Upon his bad life to make all this good,
That he did plot the Duke of Gloucester’s death,
Suggest his soon believing adversaries,
And consequently, like a traitor coward,
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,
This arm shall do it, or this life be spent.
How high a pitch his resolution soars!
Thomas of Norfolk, what sayst thou to this?
O! let my sovereign turn away his face
And bid his ears a little while be deaf,
Till I have told this slander of his blood
How God and good men hate so foul a liar.
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 liest.
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 Gloucester’s death,
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
Your Grace’s pardon, and I hope I had it.
This is my fault: as for the rest appeal’d,
It issues from the rancour of a 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.
Wrath-kindled gentlemen, 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,
Our doctors say this is no month to bleed.
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.
And, Norfolk, throw down his.
When, Harry, when?
Obedience bids I should not bid again.
Norfolk, throw down, we bid; there is no boot.
Myself I throw, dread sovereign, at thy foot.
My life thou shalt command, but not my shame:
The one my duty owes; but my fair name,—
Despite of death that lives upon my grave,—
To dark dishonour’s use thou shalt 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.
Rage must be withstood:
Give me his gage: lions make leopards tame.
Yea, but not change his spots: take but my shame,
And I 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.
Cousin, throw down your gage: do you begin.
O! God defend my soul from such deep sin.
Shall I seem crest fall’n in my father’s sight,
Or with pale beggar-fear impeach my height
Before this out-dar’d dastard? Ere my tongue
Shall wound mine honour with such feeble wrong,
Or sound so base a parle, my teeth shall tear
The slavish motive of recanting fear,
And spit it bleeding in his high disgrace,
Where shame doth harbour, even in Mowbray’s face.
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 the victor’s chivalry.
Marshal, command our officers-at-arms
Be ready to direct these home alarms.
The Same. A Room in theDuke of Lancaster’sPalace.
EnterGauntandDuchess of Gloucester.
Alas! the part I had in Woodstock’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,
Will 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 vials of his sacred blood,
Or seven fair branches springing from one root:
Some of those seven are dried by nature’s course,
Some of those branches by the Destinies cut;
But Thomas, my dear lord, my life, my Gloucester,
One vial 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 vaded,
By envy’s hand and murder’s bloody axe.
Ah, Gaunt! his blood was thine: that bed, that womb,
That metal, that self-mould, that fashion’d thee
Made him a man; and though thou liv’st and breath’st,
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 Gloucester’s death.
God’s is the quarrel; for God’s substitute,
His 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.
Thou go’st to Coventry, there to behold
Our cousin Hereford and fell Mowbray fight:
O! sit my husband’s wrongs on Hereford’s spear,
That it may enter butcher Mowbray’s breast.
Or if misfortune miss the first career,
Be Mowbray’s sins so heavy in his bosom
That they may break his foaming courser’s back,
And throw the rider headlong in the lists,
A caitiff recreant to my cousin Hereford!
Farewell, old Gaunt: thy sometimes brother’s wife
With her companion grief must end her life.
Sister, farewell; I must to Coventry.
As much good stay with thee as go with me!
Yet one word more. Grief boundeth where it falls,
Not with the empty hollowness, but weight:
I take my leave before I have begun,
For sorrow ends not when it seemeth done.
Commend me to my brother, Edmund York.
Lo! this is all: nay, yet depart not so;
Though this be all, do not so quickly go;
I shall remember more. Bid him—ah, what?—
With all good speed at Plashy visit me.
Alack! and what shall good old York there see
But empty lodgings and unfurnish’d walls,
Unpeopled offices, untrodden stones?
And what hear there for welcome but my groans?
Therefore commend me; let him not come there,
To seek out sorrow that dwells every where.
Desolate, desolate will I hence, and die:
The last leave of thee takes my weeping eye.
Open Space, near Coventry. Lists set out, and a Throne. Heralds, &c., attending.
Enter the Lord Marshal andAumerle.
My Lord Aumerle, is Harry Hereford arm’d?
Yea, at all points, and longs to enter in.
The Duke of Norfolk, sprightfully and bold,
Stays but the summons of the appellant’s trumpet.
Why then, the champions are prepar’d, and stay
For nothing but his majesty’s approach.
Flourish. EnterKing Richard,who takes his seat on his Throne;Gaunt, Bushy, Bagot, Green,and Others, who take their places. A trumpet is sounded, and answered by another trumpet within. Then enterMowbray,in armour, defendant, preceded by a Herald.
Marshal, demand of yonder champion
The cause of his arrival here in arms:
Ask him his name, and orderly proceed
To swear him in the justice of his cause.
In God’s name, and the king’s, say who thou art,
And why thou com’st thus knightly clad in arms,
Against what man thou com’st, and what thy quarrel.
Speak truly, on thy knighthood and thine oath:
As so defend thee heaven and thy valour!
My name is Thomas Mowbray, Duke of Norfolk,
Who hither come engaged by my oath,—
Which God defend a knight should violate!—
Both to defend my loyalty and truth
To God, my king, and his succeeding issue,
Against the Duke of Hereford that appeals me;
And, by the grace of God and this mine arm,
To prove him, in defending of myself,
A traitor to my God, my king, and me:
And as I truly fight, defend me heaven!
[He takes his seat.
Trumpet sounds. EnterBolingbroke,appellant, in armour, preceded by a Herald.
Marshal, ask yonder knight in arms,
Both who he is and why he cometh hither
Thus plated in habiliments of war;
And formally, according to our law,
Depose him in the justice of his cause.
What is thy name? and wherefore com’st thou hither,
Before King Richard in his royal lists?
Against whom comest thou? and what’s thy quarrel?
Speak like a true knight, so defend thee heaven!
Harry of Hereford, Lancaster, and Derby,
Am I; who ready here do stand in arms,
To prove by God’s grace and my body’s valour,
In lists, on Thomas Mowbray, Duke of Norfolk,
That he’s a traitor foul and dangerous,
To God of heaven, King Richard, and to me:
And as I truly fight, defend me heaven!
On pain of death, no person be so bold
Or daring-hardy as to touch the lists,
Except the marshal and such officers
Appointed to direct these fair designs.
Lord marshal, let me kiss my sovereign’s hand,
And bow my knee before his majesty:
For Mowbray and myself are like two men
That vow a long and weary pilgrimage;
Then let us take a ceremonious leave
And loving farewell of our several friends.
The appellant in all duty greets your highness,
And craves to kiss your hand and take his leave.
[Descends from his throne.] We will descend and fold him in our arms.
Cousin of Hereford, as thy cause is right,
So be thy fortune in this royal fight!
Farewell, my blood; which if to-day thou shed,
Lament we may, but not revenge thee dead.
O! let no noble eye profane a tear
For me, if I be gor’d with Mowbray’s spear.
As confident as is the falcon’s flight
Against a bird, do I with Mowbray fight.
My loving lord, I take my leave of you;
Of you, my noble cousin, Lord Aumerle;
Not sick, although I have to do with death,
But lusty, young, and cheerly drawing breath.
Lo! as at English feasts, so I regreet
The daintiest last, to make the end most sweet:
O thou, the earthly author of my blood,
Whose youthful spirit, in me regenerate,
Doth with a two-fold vigour lift me up
To reach at victory above my head,
Add proof unto mine armour with thy prayers,
And with thy blessings steel my lance’s point,
That it may enter Mowbray’s waxen coat,
And furbish new the name of John a Gaunt,
Even in the lusty haviour of his son.
God in thy good cause make thee prosperous!
Be swift like lightning in the execution;
And let thy blows, doubly redoubled,
Fall like amazing thunder on the casque
Of thy adverse pernicious enemy:
Rouse up thy youthful blood, be valiant and live.
Mine innocency and Saint George to thrive!
[He takes his seat.
[Rising.] However God or fortune cast my lot,
There lives or dies, true to King Richard’s throne,
A loyal, just, and upright gentleman.
Never did captive with a freer heart
Cast off his chains of bondage and embrace
His golden uncontroll’d enfranchisement,
More than my dancing soul doth celebrate
This feast of battle with mine adversary.
Most mighty liege, and my companion peers,
Take from my mouth the wish of happy years.
As gentle and as jocund as to jest,
Go I to fight: truth has a quiet breast.
Farewell, my lord: securely I espy
Virtue with valour couched in thine eye.
Order the trial, marshal, and begin.
[TheKingand the Lords return to their seats.
Harry of Hereford, Lancaster, and Derby,
Receive thy lance; and God defend the right!
[Rising.] Strong as a tower in hope, I cry ‘amen.’
[To an Officer.] Go bear this lance to Thomas, Duke of Norfolk.
Harry of Hereford, Lancaster, and Derby,
Stands here for God, his sovereign, and himself,
On pain to be found false and recreant,
To prove the Duke of Norfolk, Thomas Mowbray,
A traitor to his God, his king, and him;
And dares him to set forward to the fight.
Here standeth Thomas Mowbray, Duke of Norfolk,
On pain to be found false and recreant,
Both to defend himself and to approve
Henry of Hereford, Lancaster, and Derby,
To God, his sovereign, and to him, disloyal;
Courageously and with a free desire,
Attending but the signal to begin.
Sound, trumpets; and set forward, combatants.
[A charge sounded.
Stay, stay, the king hath thrown his warderdown.
Let them lay by their helmets and their spears,
And both return back to their chairs again:
Withdraw with us; and let the trumpets sound
While we return these dukes what we decree.
[A long flourish.
[To the Combatants.] Draw near,
And list what with our council we have done.
For that our kingdom’s earth should not be soil’d
With that dear blood which it hath fostered;
And for our eyes do hate the dire aspect
Of civil wounds plough’d up with neighbours’ swords;
And for we think the eagle-winged pride
Of sky-aspiring and ambitious thoughts,
With rival-hating envy, set on you
To wake our peace, which in our country’s cradle
Draws the sweet infant breath of gentle sleep;
Which so rous’d up with boist’rous untun’d drums,
With harsh-resounding trumpets’ dreadful bray,
And grating shock of wrathful iron arms,
Might from our quiet confines fright fair peace
And make us wade even in our kindred’s blood:
Therefore, we banish you our territories:
You, cousin Hereford, upon pain of life,
Till twice five summers have enrich’d our fields,
Shall not regreet our fair dominions,
But tread the stranger paths of banishment.
Your will be done: this must my comfort be,
That sun that warms you here shall shine on me;
And those his golden beams to you here lent
Shall point on me and gild my banishment.
Norfolk, for thee remains a heavier doom,
Which I with some unwillingness pronounce:
The sly slow hours shall not determinate
The dateless limit of thy dear exile;
The hopeless word of ‘never to return’
Breathe I against thee, upon pain of life.
A heavy sentence, my most sovereign liege,
And all unlook’d for from your highness’ mouth:
A dearer merit, not so deep a maim
As to be cast forth in the common air,
Have I deserved at your highness’ hands.
The language I have learn’d these forty years,
My native English, now I must forego;
And now my tongue’s use is to me no more
Than an unstringed viol or a harp,
Or like a cunning instrument cas’d up,
Or, being open, put into his hands
That knows no touch to tune the harmony:
Within my mouth you have engaol’d my tongue,
Doubly portcullis’d with my teeth and lips;
And dull, unfeeling, barren ignorance
Is made my gaoler to attend on me.
I am too old to fawn upon a nurse,
Too far in years to be a pupil now:
What is thy sentence then but speechless death,
Which robs my tongue from breathing native breath?
It boots thee not to be compassionate:
After our sentence plaining comes too late.
Then, thus I turn me from my country’s light,
To dwell in solemn shades of endless night.
Return again, and take an oath with thee.
Lay on our royal sword your banish’d hands;
Swear by the duty that you owe to God—
Our part therein we banish with yourselves—
To keep the oath that we administer.
You never shall,—so help you truth and God!—
Embrace each other’s love in banishment;
Nor never look upon each other’s face;
Nor never write, regreet, nor reconcile
This low’ring tempest of your home-bred hate;
Nor never by advised purpose meet
To plot, contrive, or complot any ill
’Gainst us, our state, our subjects, or our land.
And I, to keep all this.
Norfolk, so far, as to mine enemy:—
By this time, had the king permitted us,
One of our souls had wander’d in the air,
Banish’d this frail sepulchre of our flesh,
As now our flesh is banish’d from this land:
Confess thy treasons ere thou fly the realm;
Since thou hast far to go, bear not along
The clogging burden of a guilty soul.
No, Bolingbroke: if ever I were traitor,
My name be blotted from the book of life,
And I from heaven banish’d as from hence!
But what thou art, God, thou, and I do know;
And all too soon, I fear, the king shall rue.
Farewell, my liege. Now no way can I stray;
Save back to England, all the world’s my way.
Uncle, even in the glasses of thine eyes
I see thy grieved heart: thy sad aspect
Hath from the number of his banish’d years
Pluck’d four away.—[ToBolingbroke.] Six frozen winters spent,
Return with welcome home from banishment.
How long a time lies in one little word!
Four lagging winters and four wanton springs
End in a word: such is the breath of kings.
I thank my liege, that in regard of me
He shortens four years of my son’s exile;
But little vantage shall I reap thereby:
For, ere the six years that he hath to spend
Can change their moons and bring their times about,
My oil-dried lamp and time-bewasted light
Shall be extinct with age and endless night;
My inch of taper will be burnt and done,
And blindfold death not let me see my son.
Why, uncle, thou hast many years to live.
But not a minute, king, that thou canst give:
Shorten my days thou canst with sullen sorrow,
And pluck nights from me, but not lend a morrow;
Thou canst help time to furrow me with age.
But stop no wrinkle in his pilgrimage;
Thy word is current with him for my death,
But dead, thy kingdom cannot buy my breath.
Thy son is banish’d upon good advice,
Whereto thy tongue a party-verdict gave:
Why at our justice seem’st thou then to lower?
Things sweet to taste prove in digestion sour.
You urg’d me as a judge; but I had rather
You would have bid me argue like a father.
O! had it been a stranger, not my child,
To smooth his fault I should have been more mild:
A partial slander sought I to avoid,
And in the sentence my own life destroy’d.
Alas! I look’d when some of you should say,
I was too strict to make mine own away;
But you gave leave to my unwilling tongue
Against my will to do myself this wrong.
Cousin, farewell; and, uncle, bid him so:
Six years we banish him, and he shall go.
[Flourish. ExeuntKing Richardand Train.
Cousin, farewell: what presence must not know,
From where you do remain let paper show.
My lord, no leave take I; for I will ride,
As far as land will let me, by your side.
O! to what purpose dost thou hoard thy words,
That thou return’st no greeting to thy friends?
I have too few to take my leave of you,
When the tongue’s office should be prodigal
To breathe the abundant dolour of the heart.
Thy grief is but thy absence for a time.
Joy absent, grief is present for that time.
What is six winters? they are quickly gone.
To men in joy; but grief makes one hour ten.
Call it a travel that thou tak’st for pleasure.
My heart will sigh when I miscall it so,
Which finds it an inforced pilgrimage.
The sullen passage of thy weary steps
Esteem as foil wherein thou art to set
The precious jewel of thy home return.
Nay, rather, every tedious stride I make
Will but remember me what a deal of world
I wander from the jewels that I love.
Must I not serve a long apprenticehood
To foreign passages, and in the end,
Having my freedom, boast of nothing else
But that I was a journeyman to grief?
All places that the eye of heaven visits
Are to a wise man ports and happy havens.
Teach thy necessity to reason thus;
There is no virtue like necessity.
Think not the king did banish thee,
But thou the king. Woe doth the heavier sit,
Where it perceives it is but faintly borne.
Go, say I sent thee forth to purchase honour,
And not the king exil’d thee; or suppose
Devouring pestilence hangs in our air,
And thou art flying to a fresher clime.
Look, what thy soul holds dear, imagine it
To lie that way thou go’st, not whence thou com’st.
Suppose the singing birds musicians,
The grass whereon thou tread’st the presence strew’d,
The flowers fair ladies, and thy steps no more
Than a delightful measure or a dance;
For gnarling sorrow hath less power to bite
The man that mocks at it and sets it light.
O! who can hold a fire in his hand
By thinking on the frosty Caucasus?
Or cloy the hungry edge of appetite
By bare imagination of a feast?
Or wallow naked in December snow
By thinking on fantastic summer’s heat?
O, no! the apprehension of the good
Gives but the greater feeling to the worse:
Fell sorrow’s tooth doth never rankle more
Than when it bites, but lanceth not the sore.
Come, come, my son, I’ll bring thee on thy way.
Had I thy youth and cause, I would not stay.
Then, England’s ground, farewell; sweet soil, adieu:
My mother, and my nurse, that bears me yet!
Where’er I wander, boast of this I can,
Though banish’d, yet a true-born Englishman.
London. A Room in theKing’sCastle.
EnterKing Richard, Bagot,andGreenat one door;Aumerleat another.
We did observe. Cousin Aumerle,
How far brought you high Hereford on his way?
I brought high Hereford, if you call him so,
But to the next highway, and there I left him.
And say, what store of parting tears were shed?
Faith, none for me; except the northeast wind,
Which then blew bitterly against our faces,
Awak’d the sleeping rheum, and so by chance
Did grace our hollow parting with a tear.
What said our cousin when you parted with him?
And, for my heart disdained that my tongue
Should so profane the word, that taught me craft
To counterfeit oppression of such grief
That words seem’d buried in my sorrow’s grave.
Marry, would the word ‘farewell’ have lengthen’d hours
And added years to his short banishment,
He should have had a volume of farewells;
But, since it would not, he had none of me.
He is our cousin, cousin; but ’tis doubt,
When time shall call him home from banishment,
Whether our kinsman come to see his friends.
Ourself and Bushy, Bagot here and Green
Observ’d his courtship to the common people,
How he did seem to dive into their hearts
With humble and familiar courtesy,
What reverence he did throw away on slaves,
Wooing poor craftsmen with the craft of smiles
And patient underbearing of his fortune,
As ’twere to banish their affects with him.
Off goes his bonnet to an oyster-wench;
A brace of draymen bid God speed him well,
And had the tribute of his supple knee,
With ‘Thanks, my countrymen, my loving friends;’
As were our England in reversion his,
And he our subjects’ next degree in hope.
Well, he is gone; and with him go these thoughts.
Now for the rebels which stand out in Ireland;
Expedient manage must be made, my liege,
Ere further leisure yield them further means
For their advantage and your highness’ loss.
We will ourself in person to this war.
And, for our coffers with too great a court
And liberal largess are grown somewhat light,
We are enforc’d to farm our royal realm;
The revenue whereof shall furnish us
For our affairs in hand. If that come short,
Our substitutes at home shall have blank charters;
Whereto, when they shall know what men are rich,
They shall subscribe them for large sums of gold,
And send them after to supply our wants;
For we will make for Ireland presently.
Bushy, what news?
Old John of Gaunt is grievous sick, my lord,
Suddenly taken, and hath sent post-haste
To entreat your majesty to visit him.
Where lies he?
At Ely House.
Now, put it, God. in his physician’s mind
To help him to his grave immediately!
The lining of his coffers shall make coats
To deck our soldiers for these Irish wars.
Come, gentlemen, let’s all go visit him:
Pray God we may make haste, and come too late.