Front Page Titles (by Subject) SCENE II. - The Works of Christopher Marlowe, vol. 2
SCENE II. - Christopher Marlowe, The Works of Christopher Marlowe, vol. 2 
The Works of Christopher Marlowe, ed. A.H. Bullen (London: John C. Nimmo, 1885). Vol. 2.
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- If ever Hymen lour'd at marriage rites,
- And had his altars decked with dusky lights;
- If ever sun stained heaven with bloody clouds,
- And made it look with terror on the world;
- If ever day were turned to ugly night,
- And night made semblance of the hue of hell;
- This day, this hour, this fatal night,
- Shall fully show the fury of them all.—
- Enter Apothecary
- Now shall I prove, and guerdon to the full,
- The love thou bear'st unto the house of Guise.
- Where are those perfumed gloves which [late] I sent
- To be poisoned? hast thou done them? speak;
- Will every savour breed a pang of death?
- See where they be, my good lord; and he that smells
- But to them, dies.
- Then thou remainest resolute?
- I am, my lord, in what your grace commands.
- Till death.
- Thanks, my good friend: I will requite thy love
- Go, then, present them to the Queen Navarre;
- For she is that huge blemish in our eye,
- That makes these upstart heresies in France:
- Be gone, my friend, present them to her straight.
- [Exit Apothecary
- Enter a Soldier.
- Now come thou forth and play thy tragic part
- Stand in some window, opening near the street,
- And when thou see'st the Admiral ride by,
- Discharge thy musket, and perform his death;
- And then I'll guerdon thee with store of crowns.
- Now, Guise, begin those deep-engendered thoughts
- To burst abroad those never-dying flames
- Which cannot be extinguished but by blood.
- Oft have I levelled, and at last have learn'd That peril is the chiefest way to happiness,
- And resolution honour's fairest aim.
- What glory is there in a common good,
- That hangs for every peasant to achieve?
- That like I best that flies beyond my reach.
- Set me to scale the high Pyramides,
- And thereon set the diadem of France;
- I'll either rend it with my nails to naught,
- Or mount the top with my aspiring wings,
- Although my downfall be the deepest hell.
- For this I wake, when others think I sleep;
- For this I wait, that scorn attendance else;
- For this, my quenchless thirst, whereon I build,
- Hath often pleaded kindred to the king;
- For this, this head, this heart, this hand, and sword,
- Contrives, imagines, and fully executes,
- Matters of import aimèd at by many,
- Yet understood by none;
- For this, hath heaven engendered me of earth;
- For this, this earth sustains my body's weight,
- And with this weight I'll counterpoise a crown,
- Or with seditions weary all the world;
- For this, from Spain the stately Catholics
- Send Indian gold to coin me French ecues;
- For this, have I a largess from the Pope,
- A pension, and a dispensation too;
- And by that privilege to work upon,
- My policy hath fram'd religion.
- Religion! O Diabole!
- Fie, I am asham'd, however that I seem,
- To think a word of such a simple sound,
- Of so great matter should be made the ground!
- The gentle king, whose pleasure uncontroll'd
- Weakeneth his body, and will waste his realm,
- If I repair not what he ruinates, —
- Him, as a child, I daily win with words,
- So that for proof he barely bears the name;
- I execute, and he sustains the blame.
- The Mother-Queen works wonders for my sake,
- And in my love entombs the hope of France,
- Rifling the bowels of her treasury,
- To supply my wants and necessity.
- Paris hath full five hundred colleges,
- As monasteries, priories, abbeys, and halls,
- Wherein are thirty thousand able men
- Besides a thousand sturdy student Catholics:
- And more,—of my knowledge, in one cloister keep
- Five hundred fat Franciscan friars and priests:
- All this, and more, if more may be comprised,
- To bring the will of our desires to end.
- Then, Guise,
- Since thou hast all the cards within thy hands,
- To shuffle or cut, take this as surest thing,
- That, right or wrong, thou deal thyself a king.—
- Ay, but, Navarre, —'tis but a nook of France,
- Sufficient yet for such a petty king,
- That, with a rabblement of his heretics,
- Blinds Europe's eyes, and troubleth our estate.
- Him will we—[Pointing to his sword] but first let's follow those in France
- That hinder our possession to the crown.
- As Cæsar to his soldiers, so say I,—
- Those that hate me will I learn to loathe.
- Give me a look, that, when I bend the brows,
- Pale death may walk in furrows of my face;
- A hand, that with a grasp may gripe the world;
- An ear to hear what my detractors say;
- A royal seat, a sceptre, and a crown;
- That those which do behold, they may become
- As men that stand and gaze against the sun.
- The plot is laid, and things shall come to pass
- Where resolution strives for victory.