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Christopher Marlowe, The Works of Christopher Marlowe, vol. 2 (Jew of Malta, Edward II, Massacre at Paris, Tradegy of Dido) [1593]

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Christopher Marlowe, The Works of Christopher Marlowe, ed. A.H. Bullen (London: John C. Nimmo, 1885). Vol. 2.

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About this Title:

Vol.2 contains the following plays - the Jew of Malta, Edward the Second, the Massacre at Paris, the Tradegy of Dido.

Copyright information:

The text is in the public domain.

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This material is put online to further the educational goals of Liberty Fund, Inc. Unless otherwise stated in the Copyright Information section above, this material may be used freely for educational and academic purposes. It may not be used in any way for profit.

Table of Contents:

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The English Dramatists
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θάμα μὲν φόρμιγγι παμφώνοισί τ᾽ ἐν ἔντεσιν αὐλǶν.

Pindar, Olymph. VII.
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Ballantnpe Press
ballantyne, hanson and co.
edinburgh and london

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  • THE JEW OF MALTA . . . . . 1
  • EDWARD THE SECOND . . . . . 115
  • THE MASSACRE AT PARIS . . . . . 235


Four hundard copies of this Edition have been printed and the type distributed. No more will be published.

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Of the Jew of Malta there is no earlier edition than the 4to. of 1633, which was published under the auspices of the well-known dramatist Thomas Heywood. The title is:—The Famous Tragedy of the Rich Iew of Malta. As it was playd before the King and Queene, in His Majesties Theatre at White-Hall, by her Majesties Servants at the Cock-pit. Written by Christopher Marlo. London: Printed by I. B. for Nicholas Vavasour, and are to be sold at his Shop in the Inner-Temple, neere the Church. 1633. No later 4to, appeared.

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my worthy friend
of gray's inn, &c.

This play, composed by so worthy an author as Mr. Marlowe, and the part of the Jew presented by so unimitable an actor as Mr. Alleyn, being in this later age commended to the stage; as I ushered it unto the Court, and presented it to the Cock-pit, with these prologues and epilogues here inserted, so now being newly brought to the press, I was loth it should be published without the ornament of an Epistle; making choice of you unto whom to devote it; than whom (of all those gentlemen and acquaintance, within the compass of my long knowledge) there is none more able to tax ignorance, or attribute right to merit. Sir, you have been pleased to grace some of mine own works with your courteous patronage;l I hope this will not be the worse accepted, because commended by me; over whom, none can claim more power or privilege than yourself. I had no better a new-year's gift to present you with; receive it therefore as a continuance of that inviolable obligement, by which, he rests still engaged; who as he ever hath, shall always remain,

Tho. Heywood.
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  • Gracious and Great, that we so boldly dare,
  • (‘Mongst other plays that now in fashion are)
  • To present this, writ many years agone,
  • And in that age thought second unto none,
  • We humbly crave your pardon: We pursue
  • The story of a rich and famous Jew
  • Who lived in Malta: you shall find him still,
  • In all his projects, a sound Machiavill;
  • And that's his character. He that hath past
  • So many censures, is now come at last
  • To have your princely ears: grace you him; then
  • You crown the action, and renown the pen.


  • It is our fear (dread sovereign) we have bin
  • Too tedious; neither can't be less than sin
  • To wrong your princely patience: If we have,
  • (Thus low dejected) we your pardon crave:
  • And if aught here offend your ear or sight,
  • We only act and speak what others write.
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  • We know not how our play may pass this stage,
  • But by the best of poets1 in that age
  • The Malta Jew had being, and was made;
  • And he, then by the best of actors2 played;
  • In Hero and Leander, one did gain
  • A lasting memory: in Tamburlaine,
  • This Jew, with others many, th' other wan
  • The attribute of peerless, being a man
  • Whom we may rank with (doing no one wrong)
  • Proteus for shapes, and Roscius for a tongue,
  • So could he speak, so vary; nor is't hate
  • To merit, in him3 who doth personate
  • Our Jew this day; nor is it his ambition
  • To exceed or equal, being of condition
  • More modest: this is all that he intends,
  • (And that too, at the urgence of some friends)
  • To prove his best, and, if none here gainsay it,
  • The part he hath studied, and intends to play it.
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  • In graving, with Pygmalion to contend;
  • Or painting, with Apells; doutless the end
  • Must be disgrace: our actor did not so,
  • He only aimed to go, but not out-go.
  • Nor think that this day any prize1 was played;1
  • Here were no bets at all, no wagers laid;2
  • All the ambition that his mind doth swell,
  • Is but to hear from you (by me) 'twas well.
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Ferneze, Governor of Malta.

Selim Calymath, Son of the Grand Seignior.

Don Lodowick, the Governor's Son, in love with Abigail.

Don Mathias, also in love with her.

Martin del Bosco, Vice-Admiral of Spain.

Barabas, the Jew of Malta.

Ithamore, Barabas' slave.

Barnardine, Jacomo, Friars.

Pilia-Borsa, a Bully.

Two Merchants.

Three Jews.

Bassoes, Knights, Officers, Reader, Messengers, Slaves, and Carpenters.

Katharine, mother of Don Mathias.

Abigail, the Jew's Daughter.


Two Nuns.

Bellamira, a Courtesan.

Machiavel, the Prologue.


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Enter Machiavel.

  • Albeit the world thinks Machiavel is dead,
  • Yet was his soul but flown beyond the Alps;
  • And now the Guise1 is dead, is come from France,
  • To view this land, and frolic with his friends.
  • To some perhaps my name is odious,
  • But such as love me guard me from their tongues;
  • And let them know that I am Machiavel,
  • And weigh not men, and therefore not men's words.
  • Admired I am of those that hate me most.
  • Though some speak openly against my books,10
  • Yet they will read me, and thereby attain
  • To Peter's chair: and when they cast me off,
  • Are poisoned by my climbing followers.
  • I count religion but a childish toy,
  • And hold there is no sin but ignorance.
  • Birds of the air will tell of murders past!
  • I am ashamed to hear such fooleries.
  • Many will talk of title to a crown:
  • Edition: current; Page: [10]
  • What right had Cæsar to the empery?1
  • Might first made kings, and laws were then most sure20
  • When like the Draco's2 they were writ in blood.
  • Hence comes it that a strong-built citadel
  • Commands much more than letters can import;
  • Which maxim had [but3] Phalaris observed,
  • He had never bellowed, in a brazen bull,
  • Of great one's envy. Of the poor petty wights
  • Let me be envied and not pitièd!
  • But whither am I bound? I come not, I,
  • To read a lecture here in Britainy,4
  • But to present the tragedy of a Jew,30
  • Who smiles to see how full his bags are crammed,
  • Which money was not got without my means.
  • I crave but this—grace him as he deserves,
  • And let him not be entertained the worse
  • Because he favours me.
  • [Exit.
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Enter Barabas in his counting-house, with heaps of gold before him.

  • So that of thus much that return was made:
  • And of the third part of the Persian ships,
  • There was the venture summed and satisfied.
  • As for those Sabans,1 and the men of Uz,
  • That bought my Spanish oils and wines of Greece,
  • Here have I purst their paltry silverlings.2
  • Fie; what a trouble 'tis to count this trash.
  • Well fare the Arabians, who so richly pay
  • The things they traffic for with wedge of gold,
  • Whereof a man may easily in a day10
  • Tell that which may maintain him all his life.
  • The needy groom that never fingered groat,
  • Edition: current; Page: [12]
  • Would make a miracle of thus much coin:
  • But he whose steel-barred coffers are crammed full,
  • And all his lifetime hath been tirèd,
  • Wearying his fingers' ends with telling it,
  • Would in his age be loth to labour so,
  • And for a pound to sweat himself to death.
  • Give me the merchants of the Indian mines,
  • That trade in metal of the purest mould;20
  • The wealthy Moor, that in the eastern rocks
  • Without control can pick his riches up,
  • And in his house heap pearls like pebble-stones,
  • Receive them free, and sell them by the weight;
  • Bags of fiery opals, sapphires, amethysts,
  • Jacinths, hard topaz, grass-green emeralds,
  • Beauteous rubies, sparkling diamonds,
  • And seld-seen costly stones of so great price,
  • As one of them indifferently rated,
  • And of a carat of this quantity,30
  • May serve in peril of calamity
  • To ransom great kings from captivity.
  • This is the ware wherein consists my wealth;
  • And thus methinks should men of judgment frame
  • Their means of traffic from the vulgar trade,
  • And as their wealth increaseth, so inclose
  • Infinite riches in a little room.
  • But now how stands the wind?
  • Into what corner peers my halcyon's1 bill?
  • Edition: current; Page: [13]
  • Ha! to the east? yes: see, how stands the vanes?40
  • East and by south: why then I hope my ships
  • I sent for Egypt and the bordering isles
  • Are gotten up by Nilus' winding banks:
  • Mine argosy from Alexandria,
  • Loaden with spice and silks, now under sail,
  • Are smoothly gliding down by Candy shore
  • To Malta, through our Mediterranean sea.
  • But who comes here? How now!
  • Enter a Merchant.
  • Barabas, thy ships are safe,
  • Riding in Malta Road: and all the merchants50
  • With other merchandise are safe arrived,
  • And have sent me to know whether yourself
  • Will come and custom1 them.
  • The ships are safe thou say'st, and richly fraught.
  • They are.
  • Why then go bid them come ashore,
  • And bring with them their bills of entry:
  • I hope our credit in the custom-house
  • Will serve as well as I were present there.
  • Go send 'em threescore camels, thirty mules,
  • Edition: current; Page: [14]
  • And twenty waggons to bring up the ware.60
  • But art thou master in a ship of mine,
  • And is thy credit not enough for that?
  • The very custom barely comes to more
  • Than many merchants of the town are worth,
  • And therefore far exceeds my credit, sir.
  • Go tell 'em the Jew of Malta sent thee, man:
  • Tush! who amongst 'em knows not Barabas?
  • I go.
  • So then, there's somewhat come.
  • Sirrah, which of my ships art thou master of?70
  • Of the Speranza, sir.
  • And saw'st thou not
  • Mine argosy at Alexandria?
  • Thou could'st not come from Egypt, or by Caire,
  • But at the entry there into the sea,
  • Where Nilus pays his tribute to the main,
  • Thou needs must sail by Alexandria.
  • I neither saw them, nor inquired of them:
  • But this we heard some of our seamen say,
  • They wondered how you durst with so much wealth
  • Trust such a crazèd vessel, and so far.80
  • Tush, they are wise! I know her and her strength.
  • But1 go, go thou thy ways, discharge thy ship,
  • And bid my factor bring his loading in.
  • [Exit Merch.
  • And yet I wonder at this argosy.
  • Edition: current; Page: [15]
  • Enter a second Merchant.
2 Merch.
  • Thine argosy from Alexandria,
  • Know, Barabas, doth ride in Malta Road,
  • Laden with riches, and exceeding store
  • Of Persian silks, of gold, and orient pearl.
  • How chance you came not with those other ships That sailed by Egypt?
2 Merch.
  • Sir, we saw 'em not.90
  • Belike they coasted round by Candy shore
  • About their oils, or other businesses.
  • But 'twas ill done of you to come so far
  • Without the aid or conduct of their ships.
2 Merch.
  • Sir, we were wafted by a Spanish fleet,
  • That never left us till within a league,
  • That had the galleys of the Turk in chase.
  • O!—they were going up to Sicily:—
  • Well, go,
  • And bid the merchants and my men despatch100
  • And come ashore, and see the fraught discharged.
2 Merch.
  • I go.
  • [Exit.
  • Thus trowls our fortune in by land and sea,
  • And thus are we on every side enriched:
  • These are the blessings promised to the Jews,
  • And herein was old Abram's happiness:
  • What more may heaven do for earthly man
  • Than thus to pour out plenty in their laps,
  • Ripping the bowels of the earth for them,
  • Making the sea[s] their servants, and the winds110
  • To drive their substance with successful blasts?
  • Who hateth me but for my happiness?
  • Edition: current; Page: [16]
  • Or who is honoured now but for his wealth?
  • Rather had I a Jew be hated thus,
  • Than pitied in a Christian poverty:
  • For I can see no fruits in all their faith,
  • But malice, falsehood, and excessive pride,
  • Which methinks fits not their profession.
  • Haply some hapless man hath conscience,
  • And for his conscience lives in beggary.120
  • They say we are a scattered nation:
  • I cannot tell, but we have scambled1 up
  • More wealth by far than those that brag of faith.
  • There's Kirriah Jairim, the great Jew of Greece,
  • Obed in Bairseth, Nones in Portugal,
  • Myself in Malta, some in Italy,
  • Many in France, and wealthy every one;
  • Ay, wealthier far than any Christian.
  • I must confess we come not to be kings;
  • That's not our fault: alas, our number's few,130
  • And crowns come either by succession,
  • Or urged by force; and nothing violent,
  • Oft have I heard tell, can be permanent.
  • Give us a peaceful rule, make Christians kings,
  • That thirst so much for principality.
  • I have no charge, nor many children,
  • But one sole daughter, whom I hold as dear
  • As Agamemnon did his Iphigen:
  • And all I have is hers. But who comes here?
  • Enter three Jews.1
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1 Jew.
  • Tush, tell not me; 'twas done of policy.140
2 Jew.
  • Come, therefore, let us go to Barabas,
  • For he can counsel best in these affairs;
  • And here he comes.
  • Why, how now, countrymen!
  • Why flock you thus to me in multitudes?
  • What accident's betided to the Jews?
1 Jew.
  • A fleet of warlike galleys, Barabas,
  • Are come from Turkey, and lie in our road:
  • And they this day sit in the council-house
  • To entertain them and their embassy.149
  • Why, let 'em come, so they come not to war;
  • Or let 'em war, so we be conquerors—
  • Nay, let 'em combat, conquer, and kill all!
  • So they spare me, my daughter, and my wealth.
  • [Aside.
1 Jew.
  • Were it for confirmation of a league,
  • They would not come in warlike manner thus.
2 Jew.
  • I fear their coming will afflict us all.
  • Fond men! what dream you of their multitudes.
  • What need they treat of peace that are in league?
  • The Turks and those of Malta are in league.
  • Tut, tut, there is some other matter in't.160
1 Jew.
  • Why, Barabas, they come for peace or war.
  • Haply for neither, but to pass along
  • Towards Venice by the Adriatic Sea;
  • With whom they have attempted many times,
  • But never could effect their stratagem.
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3 Jew.
  • And very wisely said. It may be so.
2 Jew.
  • But there's a meeting in the senate-house,
  • And all the Jews in Malta must be there.
  • Hum; all the Jews in Malta must be there?
  • Ay, like enough, why then let every man170
  • Provide him, and be there for fashion-sake.
  • If anything shall there concern our state,
  • Assure yourselves I'll look—unto myself.
  • [Aside.
1 Jew.
  • I know you will; well, brethren, let us go.
2 Jew.
  • Let's take our leaves; farewell, good Barabas.
  • Farewell,1 Zaareth; farewell, Temainte.
  • [Exeunt Jews.
  • And, Barabas, now search this secret out;
  • Summon thy senses, call thy wits together:
  • These silly men mistake the matter clean.
  • Long to the Turk did Malta contribute;180
  • Which tribute, all in policy I fear,
  • The Turks have let increase to such a sum
  • As all the wealth of Malta cannot pay;
  • And now by that advantage thinks belike
  • To seize upon the town: ay, that he seeks.
  • However the world go, I'll make sure for one,
  • And seek in time to intercept the worst,
  • Warily guarding that which I ha' got.
  • Ego mihimet sum semper proximus.2
  • Why, let 'em enter, let 'em take the town.
  • [Exit.190
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Enter1 Governor of Malta, Knights, and Officers; met by Bassoes of the Turk, Calymath.

  • Now, Bassoes, what demand you at our hands?
1 Bas.
  • Know, Knights of Malta, that we came from Rhodes,
  • From Cyprus, Candy, and those other Isles
  • That lie betwixt the Mediterranean seas.
  • What's Cyprus, Candy, and those other Isles
  • To us, or Malta? What at our hands demand ye?
  • The ten years' tribute that remains unpaid.
  • Alas! my lord, the sum is over-great,
  • I hope your highness will consider us.
  • I wish, grave governor,2 'twere in my power10
  • To favour you, but 'tis my father's cause,
  • Wherein I may not, nay, I dare not dally.
  • Then give us leave, great Selim Calymath.
  • [Consults apart with the Knights.
  • Stand all aside, and let the Knights determine,
  • And send to keep our galleys under sail,
  • For happily we shall not tarry here;
  • Now, governor,2 [say,] how are you resolved?
  • Thus: since your hard conditions are such
  • That you will needs have ten years' tribute past,
  • We may have time to make collection20
  • Amongst the inhabitants of Malta for't.
Edition: current; Page: [20]
1 Bas.
  • That's more than is in our commission.
  • What, Callipine! a little courtesy.
  • Let's know their time, perhaps it is not long;
  • And 'tis more kingly to obtain by peace
  • Than to enforce conditions by constraint.
  • What respite ask you, governor?1
  • But a month.
  • We grant a month, but see you keep your promise.
  • Now launch our galleys back again to sea,
  • Where we'll attend the respite you have ta'en,30
  • And for the money send our messenger.
  • Farewell, great governor1 and brave Knights of Malta.
  • And all good fortune wait on Calymath!
  • [Exeunt Calymath and Bassoes.
  • Go one and call those Jews of Malta hither:
  • Were they not summoned to appear to-day?
  • They were, my lord, and here they come.
  • Enter Barabas and three Jews.
1 Knight.
  • Have you determined what to say to them?
  • Yes, give me leave:—and, Hebrews, now come near.
  • From the Emperor of Turkey is arrived
  • Great Selim Calymath, his highness' son,40
  • To levy of us ten years' tribute past,
  • Now then, here know that it concerneth us—
Edition: current; Page: [21]
  • Then, good my lord, to keep your quiet still,
  • Your lordship shall do well to let them have it.
  • Soft, Barabas, there's more 'longs to 't than so.
  • To what this ten years' tribute will amount,
  • That we have cast, but cannot compass it
  • By reason of the wars that robbed our store;
  • And therefore are we to request your aid.
  • Alas, my lord, we are no soldiers:50
  • And what's our aid against so great a prince?
1 Knight.
  • Tut, Jew, we know thou art no soldier;
  • Thou art a merchant and a moneyed man,
  • And 'tis thy money, Barabas, we seek.
  • How, my lord! my money?
  • Thine and the rest.
  • For, to be short, amongst you't must be had.
1 Jew.
  • Alas, my lord, the most of us are poor.
  • Then let the rich increase your portions.
  • Are strangers with your tribute to be taxed?60
2 Knight.
  • Have strangers leave with us to get their wealth?
  • Then let them with us contribute.
  • How! equally?
  • No, Jew, like infidels.
  • For through our sufferance of your hateful lives,
  • Who stand accursèd in the sight of Heaven,
  • These taxes and afflictions are befallen,
  • And therefore thus we are determinèd.
  • Read there the articles of our decrees.
  • First, the tribute-money of the Turks shall all Edition: current; Page: [22] be levied amongst the Jews, and each of them to pay one half of his estate.70
  • How, half his estate? I hope you mean not mine.
  • [Aside.
  • Read on.
  • Secondly, he that denies to pay shall straight become a Christian.
  • How! a Christian? Hum, what's here to do?
  • [Aside.
  • Lastly, he that denies this shall absolutely lose all he has.
All 3 Jews.
  • O my lord, we will give half.
  • O earth-mettled villains, and no Hebrews born!
  • And will you basely thus submit yourselves80
  • To leave your goods to their arbitrament?
  • Why, Barabas, wilt thou be christenèd?
  • No, governor, I will be no convertite.1
  • Then pay thy half.
  • Why, know you what you did by this device?
  • Half of my substance is a city's wealth.
  • Governor, it was not got so easily;
  • Nor will I part so slightly therewithal.
  • Sir, half is the penalty of our decree,
  • Either pay that, or we will seize on all.
  • Corpo di Dio! stay! you shall have the half;90
  • Let me be used but as my brethren are.
  • No, Jew, thou hast denied the articles,
  • And now it cannot be recalled.
  • [Exeunt Officers, on a sign from the Governor.
Edition: current; Page: [23]
  • Will you then steal my goods?
  • Is theft the ground of your religion?
  • No, Jew, we take particularly thine
  • To save the ruin of a multitude:
  • And better one want for the common good
  • Than many perish for a private man:
  • Yet, Barabas, we will not banish thee,100
  • But here in Malta, where thou gott'st thy wealth,
  • Live still; and, if thou canst, get more.
  • Christians, what or how can I multiply?
  • Of naught is nothing made.
1 Knight.
  • From naught at first thou cam'st to little wealth,
  • From little unto more, from more to most:
  • If your first curse fall heavy on thy head,
  • And make thee poor and scorned of all the world,
  • 'Tis not our fault, but thy inherent sin.
  • What, bring you scripture to confirm your wrongs?110
  • Preach me not out of my possessions.
  • Some Jews are wicked, as all Christians are:
  • But say the tribe that I descended of
  • Were all in general cast away for sin,
  • Shall I be tried by their transgression?
  • The man that dealeth righteously shall live:
  • And which of you can charge me otherwise?
  • Out, wretched Barabas!
  • Sham'st thou not thus to justify thyself,
  • As if we knew not thy profession?120
  • If thou rely upon thy righteousness,
  • Edition: current; Page: [24]
  • Be patient and thy riches will increase.
  • Excess of wealth is cause of covetousness:
  • And covetousness, O, 'tis a monstrous sin.
  • Ay, but theft is worse: tush! take not from methen,
  • For that is theft! and if you rob me thus,
  • I must be forced to steal and compass more.
1 Knight.
  • Grave governor,1 listen not to his exclaims.
  • Convert his mansion to a nunnery;
  • His house will harbour many holy nuns.130
  • It shall be so.
  • Enter Officers.
  • Now, officers, have you done?
  • Ay, my lord, we have seized upon the goods
  • And wares of Barabas, which being valued,
  • Amount to more than all the wealth in Malta,
  • And of the other we have seizèd half.
  • Then we'll take order for the residue.
  • Well then, my lord, say, are you satisfied?
  • You have my goods, my money, and my wealth,
  • My ships, my store, and all that I enjoyed;
  • And, having all, you can request no more;140
  • Unless your unrelenting flinty hearts
  • Suppress all pity in your stony breasts,
  • And now shall move you to bereave my life.
  • No, Barabas, to stain our hands with blood
  • Is far from us and our profession.
  • Why, I esteem the injury far less
  • To take the lives of miserable men
  • Edition: current; Page: [25]
  • Than be the causers of their misery.
  • You have my wealth, the labour of my life,
  • The comfort of mine age, my children's hope,150
  • And therefore ne'er distinguish of the wrong.
  • Content thee, Barabas, thou hast naught but right.
  • Your extreme right does me exceeding wrong:
  • But take it to you, i' the devil's name.
  • Come, let us in, and gather of these goods
  • The money for this tribute of the Turk.
1 Knight.
  • 'Tis necessary that be looked unto:
  • For if we break our day, we break the league,
  • And that will prove but simple policy.
  • [Exeunt, all except Barabas and the Jews.
  • Ay, policy! that's their profession,160
  • And not simplicity, as they suggest.
  • The plagues of Egypt, and the curse of Heaven,
  • Earth's barrenness, and all men's hatred
  • Inflict upon them, thou great Primus Motor!
  • And here upon my knees, striking the earth,
  • I ban their souls to everlasting pains
  • And extreme tortures of the fiery deep,
  • That thus have dealt with me in my distress.
1 Jew.
  • O yet be patient, gentle Barabas.
  • O silly brethren, born to see this day;170
  • Why stand you thus unmoved with my laments?
  • Why weep you not to think upon my wrongs?
  • Why pine not I, and die in this distress?
1 Jew.
  • Why, Barabas, as hardly can we brook
  • The cruel handling of ourselves in this;
  • Thou seest they have taken half our goods.
Edition: current; Page: [26]
  • Why did you yield to their extortion?
  • You were a multitude, and I but one:
  • And of me only have they taken all.
1 Jew.
  • Yet, brother Barabas, remember Job.180
  • What tell you me of Job? I wot his wealth
  • Was written thus: he had seven thousand sheep,
  • Three thousand camels, and two hundred yoke
  • Of labouring oxen, and five hundred
  • She-asses: but for every one of those,
  • Had they been valued at indifferent rate,
  • I had at home, and in mine argosy,
  • And other ships that came from Egypt last,
  • As much as would have bought his beasts and him,
  • And yet have kept enough to live upon:190
  • So that not he, but I may curse the day,
  • Thy fatal birth-day, forlorn Barabas;
  • And henceforth wish for an eternal night,
  • That clouds of darkness may inclose my flesh,
  • And hide these extreme sorrows from mine eyes:
  • For only I have toiled to inherit here
  • The months of vanity and loss of time,
  • And painful nights, have been appointed me.
2 Jew.
  • Good Barabas, be patient.
  • Ay, I pray, leave me in my patience.200
  • You that were1 ne'er possessed of wealth, are pleased with want;
  • But give him liberty at least to mourn,
  • That in a field amidst his enemies
  • Doth see his soldiers slain, himself disarmed,
  • Edition: current; Page: [27]
  • And knows no means of his recovery:
  • Ay, let me sorrow for this sudden chance;
  • 'Tis in the trouble of my spirit I speak;
  • Great injuries are not so soon forgot.
1 Jew.
  • Come, let us leave him; in his ireful mood
  • Our words will but increase his ecstasy.210
1 Jew.
  • On, then; but trust me 'tis a misery
  • To see a man in such affliction.—
  • Farewell, Barabas!
  • [Exeunt.
  • Ay, fare you well.
  • See the simplicity of these base slaves,
  • Who, for the villains have no wit themselves,
  • Think me to be a senseless lump of clay
  • That will with every water wash to dirt:
  • No, Barabas is born to better chance,
  • And framed of finer mould than common men,
  • That measure naught but by the present time.220
  • A reaching thought will search his deepest wits,
  • And cast with cunning for the time to come:
  • For evils are apt to happen every day.—
  • But whither wends my beauteous Abigail?
  • Enter Abigail, the Jew's daughter.
  • O! what has made my lovely daughter sad?
  • What, woman! moan not for a little loss:
  • Thy father hath enough in store for thee.
  • Nor [not?] for myself, but agèd Barabas:
  • Father, for thee lamenteth Abigail:
  • But I will learn to leave these fruitless tears,230
  • And, urged thereto with my afflictions,
  • Edition: current; Page: [28]
  • With fierce exclaims run to the senate-house,
  • And in the senate reprehend them all,
  • And rend their hearts with tearing of my hair,
  • Till they reduce1 the wrongs done to my father.
  • No, Abigail, things past recovery
  • Are hardly cured with exclamations.
  • Be silent, daughter, sufferance breeds ease,
  • And time may yield us an occasion
  • Which on the sudden cannot serve the turn.240
  • Besides, my girl, think me not all so fond
  • As negligently to forego so much
  • Without provision for thyself and me.
  • Ten thousand portagues,2 besides great pearls,
  • Rich costly jewels, and stones infinite,
  • Fearing the worst of this before it fell,
  • I closely hid.
  • Where, father?
  • In my house, my girl.
  • Then shall they ne'er be seen of Barabas:250
  • For they have seized upon thy house and wares.
  • But they will give me leave once more, I trow,
  • To go into my house.
  • That may they not:
  • For there I left the governor placing nuns,
  • Displacing me; and of thy house they mean
  • To make a nunnery, where none but their own sect3
  • Must enter in; men generally barred.
Edition: current; Page: [29]
  • My gold! my gold! and all my wealth is gone!
  • You partial heavens, have I deserved this plague?
  • What, will you thus oppose me, luckless stars,260
  • To make me desperate in my poverty?
  • And knowing me impatient in distress,
  • Think me so mad as I will hang myself,
  • That I may vanish o'er the earth in air,
  • And leave no memory that e'er I was?
  • No, I will live; nor loathe I this my life:
  • And, since you leave me in the ocean thus
  • To sink or swim, and put me to my shifts,
  • I'll rouse my senses and awake myself.
  • Daughter! I have it: thou perceiv'st the plight270
  • Wherein these Christians have oppressèd me:
  • Be ruled by me, for in extremity
  • We ought to make bar of no policy.
  • Father, whate'er it be to injure them
  • That have so manifestly wrongèd us,
  • What will not Abigail attempt?
  • Why, so;
  • Then thus, thou told'st me they have turned my house
  • Into a nunnery, and some nuns are there?
  • I did.
  • Then, Abigail, there must my girl
  • Entreat the abbess to be entertained.280
  • How, as a nun?
  • Ay, daughter, for religion
  • Hides many mischiefs from suspicion.
  • Ay, but, father, they will suspect me there.
  • Let'em suspect; but be thou so precise
  • Edition: current; Page: [30]
  • As they may think it done of holiness.
  • Entreat 'em fair, and give them friendly speech,
  • And seem to them as if thy sins were great,
  • Till thou hast gotten to be entertained.
  • Thus, father, shall I much dissemble.
  • Tush!290
  • As good dissemble that thou never mean'st,
  • As first mean truth and then dissemble it,—
  • A counterfeit profession is better
  • Than unseen1 hypocrisy.
  • Well, father, say [that] I be entertained,
  • What then shall follow?
  • This shall follow then;
  • There have I hid, close underneath the plank
  • That runs along the upper-chamber floor,
  • The gold and jewels which I kept for thee.
  • But here they come; be cunning, Abigail.300
  • Then, father, go with me.
  • No, Abigail, in this
  • It is not necessary I be seen:
  • For I will seem offended with thee for't:
  • Be close, my girl, for this must fetch my gold.
  • [They draw back.
  • Enter Friar2 Jacomo, Friar Barnardine, Abbess, and a Nun.
F. Jac.
  • Sisters, we now are almost at the new-made nunnery.
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  • The better; for we love not to be seen:
  • 'Tis thirty winters long since some of us
  • Did stray so far amongst the multitude.
F. Jac.
  • But, madam, this house
  • And waters2 of this new-made nunnery310
  • Will much delight you.
  • It may be so; but who comes here?
  • [Abigail comes forward.
  • Grave abbess, and you, happy virgins' guide,
  • Pity the state of a distressèd maid.
  • What art thou, daughter?
  • The hopeless daughter of a hapless Jew,
  • The Jew of Malta, wretched Barabas;
  • Sometimes4 the owner of a goodly house,
  • Which they have now turned to a nunnery.
  • Well, daughter, say, what is thy suit with us?
  • Fearing the afflictions which my father feels321
  • Proceed from sin, or want of faith in us,
  • I'd pass away my life in penitence,
  • And be a novice in your nunnery,
  • To make atonement for my labouring soul.
F. Jac.
  • No doubt, brother, but this proceedeth of the spirit.
F. Barn.
  • Ay, and of a moving spirit too, brother; but come,
  • Let us entreat she may be entertained.
  • Well, daughter, we admit you for a nun.
Edition: current; Page: [32]
  • First let me as a novice learn to frame330
  • My solitary life to your strait laws,
  • And let me lodge where I was wont to lie,
  • I do not doubt, by your divine precepts
  • And mine own industry, but to profit much.
  • As much, I hope, as all I hid is worth.
  • [Aside.
  • Come, daughter, follow us.
  • Why, how now, Abigail,
  • What makest thou amongst these hateful Christians?
F. Jac.
  • Hinder her not, thou man of little faith,
  • For she has mortified herself.
  • How! mortified?
F. Jac.
  • And is admitted to the sisterhood.340
  • Child of perdition, and thy father's shame!
  • What wilt thou do among these hateful fiends?
  • I charge thee on my blessing that thou leave
  • These devils, and their damnèd heresy.
  • Father, give1 me—
  • [She goes to him.
  • Nay, back, Abigail,
  • (And think upon the jewels and the gold; [Whispers to her. The board is markèd thus that covers it.)
  • Away, accursèd, from thy father's sight.
F. Jac.
  • Barabas, although thou art in misbelief,
  • And wilt not see thine own afflictions,350
  • Yet let thy daughter be no longer blind.
  • Blind friar, I reck not thy persuasions,
  • (The board is markèd thus2 that covers it.)
  • Edition: current; Page: [33]
  • For I had rather die than see her thus.
  • Wilt thou forsake me too in my distress,
  • Seducèd daughter? (Go, forget not, go.1)
  • Becomes it Jews to be so credulous?
  • (To-morrow early I'll be at the door.)
  • No, come not at me; if thou wilt be damned,
  • Forget me, see me not, and so be gone.360
  • (Farewell, remember to-morrow morning.)
  • Out, out, thou wretch!
  • [Exeunt, on one side Barabas, on the other side Friars,
  • Abbess, Nun and Abigail; as they are going out,
  • Enter Mathias.
  • Who's this? fair Abigail, the rich Jew's daughter,
  • Become a nun! her father's sudden fall
  • Has humbled her and brought her down to this:
  • Tut, she were fitter for a tale of love,
  • Than to be tirèd out with orisons:
  • And better would she far become a bed,
  • Embracèd in a friendly lover's arms,
  • Than rise at midnight to a solemn mass.370
  • Enter Lodowick.
  • Why, how now, Don Mathias! in a dump?
  • Believe me, noble Lodowick, I have seen
  • The strangest sight, in my opinion,
  • That ever I beheld.
  • What was't, I prithee?
Edition: current; Page: [34]
  • A fair young maid, scarce fourteen years of age,
  • The sweetest flower in Cytherea's field,
  • Cropt from the pleasures of the fruitful earth,
  • And strangely metamorphos'd [to a] nun.
  • But say, what was she?
  • Why, the rich Jew's daughter.
  • What, Barabas, whose goods were lately seized?
  • Is she so fair?
  • And matchless beautiful;381
  • As had you seen her 'twould have moved your heart,
  • Though countermined with walls of brass, to love,
  • Or at the least to pity.
  • And if she be so fair as you report,
  • 'Twere time well spent to go and visit her:
  • How say you, shall we?
  • I must and will, sir; there's no remedy.
  • And so will I too, or it shall go hard.
  • Farewell, Mathias.
  • Farewell, Lodowick.
  • [Exeunt severally.390
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Enter1 Barabas with a light.

  • Thus,2 like the sad presaging raven, that tolls
  • The sick man's passport in her hollow beak,
  • And in the shadow of the silent night
  • Doth shake contagion from her sable wings;
  • Vexed and tormented runs poor Barabas
  • With fatal curses towards these Christians.
  • The uncertain pleasures of swift-footed time
  • Have ta'en their flight, and left me in despair;
  • And of my former riches rests no more
  • But bare remembrance, like a soldier's scar,10
  • That has no further comfort for his maim.
  • O thou, that with a fiery pillar led'st
  • The sons of Israel through the dismal shades,
  • Light Abraham's offspring; and direct the hand
  • Of Abigail this night; or let the day
  • Turn to eternal darkness after this!
  • No sleep can fasten on my watchful eyes,
  • Edition: current; Page: [36]
  • Nor quiet enter my distempered thoughts,
  • Till I have answer of my Abigail.
  • Enter Abigail above.
  • Now have I happily espied a time20
  • To search the plank my father did appoint;
  • And here behold, unseen, where I have found
  • Now I remember those old women's words,
  • Who in my wealth would tell me winter's tales,1
  • And speak of spirits and ghosts that glide by night
  • About the place where treasure hath been hid:2
  • And now methinks that I am one of those:
  • For whilst I live, here lives my soul's sole hope,
  • And, when I die, here shall my spirit walk.30
  • Now that my father's fortune were so good
  • As but to be about this happy place;
  • Tis not so happy: yet when we parted last,
  • He said he would attend me in the morn.
  • Then, gentle sleep, where'er his body rests,
  • Give charge to Morpheus that he may dream
  • Edition: current; Page: [37]
  • A golden dream, and of the sudden wake,1
  • Come and receive the treasure I have found.
  • Bueno para todos mi ganado no era:2
  • As good go on as sit so sadly thus.40
  • But stay, what star shines yonder in the east?3
  • The loadstar of my life, if Abigail.
  • Who's there?
  • Who's that?
  • Peace, Abigail, 'tis I.
  • Then, father, here receive thy happiness.
  • [Throws down bags.
  • Hast thou't?
  • Here, [Throws down the bags] hast thou't?
  • There's more, and more, and more.
  • O my girl,
  • My gold, my fortune, my felicity!
  • Strength to my soul, death to mine enemy!
  • Welcome the first beginner of my bliss!
  • O Abigail, Abigail, that I had thee here too!50
  • Then my desires were fully satisfied:
  • But I will practise thy enlargement thence:
  • O girl! O gold! O beauty! O my bliss!
  • [Hugs his bags.
  • Father, it draweth towards midnight now,
  • Edition: current; Page: [38]
  • And about this time the nuns begin to wake;
  • To shun suspicion, therefore, let us part.
  • Farewell, my joy, and by my fingers take
  • A kiss from him that sends it from his soul.
  • [Exit Abigail above.
  • Now Phœbus ope the eyelids1 of the day,
  • And for the raven wake the morning lark,60
  • That I may hover with her in the air;
  • Singing o'er these, as she does o'er her young.
  • Hermoso2 Piarer de les Denirch.
  • [Exit.


Enter3 Governor, Martin del Bosco, and Knights.

  • Now, captain, tell us whither thou art bound?
  • Whence is thy ship that anchors in our road?
  • And why thou cam'st ashore without our leave?
  • Governor of Malta, hither am I bound;
  • My ship, the Flying Dragon, is of Spain,
  • And so am I: Del Bosco is my name;
  • Vice-admiral unto the Catholic King.
1 Knight.
  • 'Tis true, my lord, therefore entreat him well.
  • Our fraught is Grecians, Turks, and Afric Moors.
  • Edition: current; Page: [39]
  • For late upon the coast of Corsica,10
  • Because we vailed1 not to the Turkish2 fleet,
  • Their creeping galleys had us in the chase:
  • But suddenly the wind began to rise,
  • And then we luffed and tacked,3 and fought at ease:
  • Some have we fired, and many have we sunk;
  • But one amongst the rest became our prize:
  • The captain's slain, the rest remain our slaves,
  • Of whom we would make sale in Malta here.
  • Martin del Bosco, I have heard of thee;
  • Welcome to Malta, and to all of us;20
  • But to admit a sale of these thy Turks
  • We may not, nay, we dare not give consent
  • By reason of a tributary league.
1 Knight.
  • Del Bosco, as thou lov'st and honour'st us,
  • Persuade our governor against the Turk;
  • This truce we have is but in hope of gold,
  • Will Knights of Malta be in league with Turks,
  • And buy it basely too for sums of gold?
  • My lord, remember that, to Europe's shame,30
  • The Christian Isle of Rhodes, from whence you came,
  • Was lately lost, and you were stated4 here
  • To be at deadly enmity with Turks.
  • Captain, we know it, but our force is small.
Edition: current; Page: [40]
  • What is the sum that Calymath requires?
  • A hundred thousand crowns.
  • My lord and king hath title to this isle,
  • And he means quickly to expel you hence;
  • Therefore be ruled by me, and keep the gold:
  • I'll write unto his majesty for aid,40
  • And not depart until I see you free.
  • On this condition shall thy Turks be sold:
  • Go, officers, and set them straight in show.
  • [Exeunt Officers.
  • Bosco, thou shalt be Malta's general;
  • We and our warlike Knights will follow thee
  • Against these barb'rous misbelieving Turks.
  • So shall you imitate those you succeed:
  • For when their hideous force environed Rhodes,
  • Small though the number was that kept the town,
  • They fought it out, and not a man survived50
  • To bring the hapless news to Christendom.
  • So will we fight it out; come, let's away:
  • Proud daring Calymath, instead of gold,
  • We'll send thee bullets wrapt1 in smoke and fire:
  • Claim tribute where thou wilt, we are resolved,
  • Honour is bought with blood and not with gold.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter2 Officers with Ithamore and other slaves.

1 Off.
  • This is the market-place, here let 'em stand:
  • Fear not their sale, for they'll be quickly bought.
Edition: current; Page: [41]
2 Off.
  • Every one's price is written on his back,
  • And so much must they yield or not be sold.
1 Off.
  • Here comes the Jew; had not his goods been seized,
  • He'd given us present money for them all.
  • Enter Barabas.
  • In spite of these swine-eating Christians,—
  • Unchosen nation, never circumcised,
  • Such1 as (poor villains!) were ne'er thought upon
  • Till Titus and Vespasian conquered us,—10
  • Am I become as wealthy as I was:
  • They hoped my daughter would ha' been a nun;
  • But she's at home, and I have bought a house
  • As great and fair as is the Governor's;
  • And there in spite of Malta will I dwell,
  • Having Ferneze's hand, whose heart I'll have;
  • Ay, and his son's too, or it shall go hard.
  • I am not of the tribe of Levi, I,
  • That can so soon forget an injury.
  • We Jews can fawn like spaniels when we please:20
  • And when we grin we bite, yet are our looks
  • As innocent and harmless as a lamb's.
  • I learned in Florence how to kiss my hand,
  • Heave up my shoulders when they call me dog,2
  • And duck as low as any barefoot friar;
  • Hoping to see them starve upon a stall,
  • Edition: current; Page: [42]
  • Or else be gathered for in our Synagogue,
  • That, when the offering-basin comes to me,
  • Even for charity I may spit into't.
  • Here comes Don Lodowick, the Governor's son,30
  • One that I love for his good father's sake.
  • Enter Lodowick.
  • I hear the wealthy Jew walkèd this way:
  • I'll seek him out, and so insinuate,
  • That I may have a sight of Abigail;
  • Now will I show myself
  • To have more of the serpent than the dove;
  • That is—more knave than fool.
  • Yond' walks the Jew; now for fair Abigail.
  • Ay, ay, no doubt but she's at your command.40
  • [Aside.
  • Barabas, thou know'st I am the Governor's son.
  • I would you were his father too, sir;
  • That's all the harm I wish you.—The slave looks
  • Like a hog's-cheek new singed.
  • [Aside.
  • Whither walk'st thou, Barabas?
  • No farther: 'tis a custom held with us,
  • That when we speak with Gentiles like to you,
  • We turn into the air to purge ourselves:
  • For unto us the promise doth belong.
  • Well, Barabas, canst help me to a diamond?50
  • O, sir, your father had my diamonds.
  • Yet I have one left that will serve your turn:—
  • I mean my daughter: but ere he shall have her
  • Edition: current; Page: [43]
  • I'll sacrifice her on a pile of wood.
  • I ha' the poison of the city [?] for him,
  • And the white leprosy.
  • [Aside.
  • What sparkle does it give without a foil?
  • The diamond that I talk of ne'er was foiled:—
  • But when he touches it, it will be foiled:—
  • [Aside.
  • Lord Lodowick, it sparkles bright and fair.60
  • Is it square or pointed, pray let me know.
  • Pointed it is, good sir—but not for you.
  • [Aside.
  • I like it much the better.
  • So do I too.
  • How shows it by night?
  • Outshines Cynthia's rays:
  • You'll like it better far o' nights than days.
  • [Aside.
  • And what's the price?
  • Your life an' if you have it. [Aside.] O my lord,
  • We will not jar about the price; come to my house
  • And I will give't your honour—with a vengeance.
  • [Aside.
  • No, Barabas, I will deserve it first.70
  • Good sir,
  • Your father has deserved it at my hands,
  • Who, of mere charity and Christian truth,
  • To bring me to religious purity,
  • And as it were in catechising sort,
  • To make me mindful of my mortal sins,
  • Against my will, and whether I would or no,
  • No doubt your soul shall reap the fruit of it.80
Edition: current; Page: [44]
  • Ay, but, my lord, the harvest is far off
  • And yet I know the prayers of those nuns
  • And holy friars, having money for their pains,
  • Are wondrous;—and indeed do no man good:
  • [Aside.
  • And seeing they are not idle, but still doing,
  • 'Tis likely they in time may reap some fruit,
  • I mean in fulness of perfection.
  • Good Barabas, glance not at our holy nuns.
  • No, but I do it through a burning zeal,—
  • Hoping ere long to set the house afire;90
  • For though they do a while increase and multiply,
  • I'll have a saying to1 that nunnery.—
  • [Aside.
  • As for the diamond, sir, I told you of,
  • Come home and there's no price shall make us part,
  • Even for your honourable father's sake.—
  • It shall go hard but I will see your death.—
  • [Aside.
  • But now I must be gone to buy a slave.
  • And, Barabas, I'll bear thee company.
  • Come then—here's the market-place.
  • What's the price of this slave? Two hundred crowns!
  • Do the Turks weigh so much?
1 Off.
  • Sir, that's his price.101
  • What, can he steal that you demand so much?
  • Belike he has some new trick for a purse;
  • And if he has, he is worth three hundred plates,2
  • Edition: current; Page: [45]
  • So that, being bought, the town-seal might be got
  • To keep him for his lifetime from the gallows:
  • The sessions day is critical to thieves,
  • And few or none 'scape but by being purged.
  • Rat'st thou this Moor but at two hundred plates?
1 Off.
  • No more, my lord.110
  • Why should this Turk be dearer than that Moor?
1 Off.
  • Because he is young and has more qualities.
  • What, hast the philosopher's stone? and thou hast, break my head with it, I'll forgive thee.
  • No, sir; I can cut and shave.
  • Let me see, sirrah, are you not an old shaver?2
  • Alas, sir! I am a very youth.
  • A youth? I'll buy you, and marry you to Lady Vanity,4 if you do well.
Slave. 3.
  • I will serve you, sir.120
  • Some wicked trick or other. It may be, under colour of shaving, thou'lt cut my throat for my goods. Tell me, hast thou thy health well?
Slave. 3.
  • Ay, passing well.
  • So much the worse; I must have one that's sickly, an't be but for sparing victuals: 'tis not a stone of beef a day will maintain you in these chops; let me see one that's somewhat leaner.
Edition: current; Page: [46]
1 Off.
  • Here's a leaner, how like you him?
  • Where wast thou born?130
  • In Thrace; brought up in Arabia.
  • So much the better, thou art for my turn.
  • An hundred crowns? I'll have him; there's the coin.
1 Off.
  • Then mark him, sir, and take him hence.
  • Ay, mark him, you were best, for this is he
  • That by my help shall do much villainy.
  • [Aside.
  • My lord, farewell: Come, sirrah, you are mine.
  • As for the diamond, it shall be yours;
  • I pray, sir, be no stranger at my house,
  • All that I have shall be at your command.140
  • Enter Mathias and his Mother.1
  • What makes the Jew and Lodowick so private?
  • I fear me 'tis about fair Abigail.
  • [Aside.
  • Yonder comes Don Mathias, let us stay;2
  • [Exit Lodowick
  • He loves my daughter, and she holds him dear:
  • But I have sworn to frustrate both their hopes,
  • And be revenged upon the Governor.
  • This Moor is comeliest, is he not? speak, son.
  • No, this is the better, mother; view this well.
  • Seem not to know me here before your mother,
  • Lest she mistrust the match that is in hand:150
  • When you have brought her home, come to my house;
  • Think of me as thy father; son, farewell.
  • But wherefore talked Don Lodowick with you?
Edition: current; Page: [47]
  • Tush! man, we talked of diamonds, not of Abigail.
  • Tell me, Mathias, is not that the Jew?
  • As for the comment on the Maccabees,
  • I have it, sir, and 'tis at your command.
  • Yes, madam, and my talk with him was [but]1
  • About the borrowing of a book or two.
  • Converse not with him, he's cast off from heaven.160
  • Thou hast thy crowns, fellow; come, let's away.
  • Sirrah, Jew, remember the book.
  • Marry will I, sir.
  • [Exeunt Mathias and his Mother.
  • Come, I have made
  • A reasonable market; let's away.
  • [Exeunt Officers with slaves.
  • Now let me know thy name, and therewithal
  • Thy birth, condition, and profession.
  • Faith, sir, my birth is but mean: my name's
  • Ithamore, my profession what you please.
  • Hast thou no trade? then listen to my words,170
  • And I will teach [thee] that shall stick by thee:
  • First be thou void of these affections,
  • Compassion, love, vain hope, and heartless fear,
  • Be moved at nothing, see thou pity none,
  • But to thyself smile when the Christians moan.
  • O brave! master, I worship your nose2 for this.
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  • As1 for myself, I walk abroad o' nights
  • And kill sick people groaning under walls:
  • Sometimes I go about and poison wells;
  • And now and then, to cherish Christian thieves,180
  • I am content to lose some of my crowns,
  • That I may, walking in my gallery,
  • See 'em go pinioned along by my door.
  • Being young, I studied physic, and began
  • To practise first upon the Italian;
  • There I enriched the priests with burials,
  • And always kept the sextons' arms in ure2
  • With digging graves and ringing dead men's knells:
  • And after that was I an engineer,
  • And in the wars 'twixt France and Germany,190
  • Under pretence of helping Charles the Fifth,
  • Slew friend and enemy with my stratagems.
  • Then after that was I an usurer,
  • And with extorting, cozening, forfeiting,
  • And tricks belonging unto brokery,
  • I filled the jails with bankrupts in a year,
  • And with young orphans planted hospitals,
  • And every moon made some or other mad,
  • And now and then one hang himself for grief,
  • Pinning upon his breast a long great scroll200
  • How I with interest tormented him.
  • But mark how I am blest for plaguing them;
  • Edition: current; Page: [49]
  • I have as much coin as will buy the town.
  • But tell me now, how hast thou spent thy time?
  • 'Faith, master,
  • In setting Christian villages on fire,
  • Chaining of eunuchs, binding galley-slaves.
  • One time I was an hostler in an inn,
  • And in the night-time secretly would I steal
  • To travellers' chambers, and there cut their throats:210
  • Once at Jerusalem, where the pilgrims kneeled,
  • I strewèd powder on the marble stones,
  • And therewithal their knees would rankle so
  • That I have laughed a-good1 to see the cripples
  • Go limping home to Christendom on stilts.
  • Why this is something: make account of me
  • As of thy fellow; we are villains both:
  • Both circumcisèd, we hate Christians both:
  • Be true and secret, thou shalt want no gold.
  • But stand aside, here comes Don Lodowick.220
  • Enter Lodowick.
  • O Barabas, well met;
  • Where is the diamond you told me of?
  • I have it for you, sir; please you walk in with me:
  • What ho, Abigail!2 open the door, I say.
  • Enter Abigail.
  • In good time, father; here are letters come
  • From Ormus, and the post stays here within.
Edition: current; Page: [50]
  • Give me the letters.—Daughter, do you hear,
  • Entertain Lodowick the Governor's son
  • With all the courtesy you can afford;
  • Provided that you keep your maidenhead.230
  • Use him as if he were a Philistine,
  • Dissemble, swear, protest, vow love1 to him,
  • He is not of the seed of Abraham.
  • [Aside.
  • I am a little busy, sir, pray pardon me.
  • Abigail, bid him welcome for my sake.
  • For your sake and his own he's welcome hither.
  • Daughter, a word more; kiss him, speak him fair,
  • And like a cunning Jew so cast about,
  • That ye be both made sure2 ere you come out.
  • [Aside.
  • O father! Don Mathias is my love.240
  • I know it: yet I say, make love to him;
  • Do, it is requisite it should be so—
  • Nay, on my life, it is my factor's hand—
  • But go you in, I'll think upon the account.
  • [Exeunt Abigail and Lodowick.
  • The account is made, for Lodowick [he3] dies.
  • My factor sends me word a merchant's fled
  • That owes me for a hundred tun of wine:
  • I weigh it thus much [snapping his fingers]; I have wealth enough.
  • Edition: current; Page: [51]
  • For now by this has he kissed Abigail;
  • And she vows love to him, and he to her.250
  • As sure as heaven rained manna for the Jews,
  • So sure shall he and Don Mathias die:
  • His father was my chiefest enemy.
  • Enter Mathias.
  • Whither goes Don Mathias? stay awhile.
  • Whither, but to my fair love Abigail?
  • Thou know'st, and Heaven can witness this is true,
  • That I intend my daughter shall be thine.
  • Ay, Barabas, or else thou wrong'st me much.
  • O, Heaven forbid I should have such a thought.
  • Pardon me though I weep: the Governor's son260
  • Will, whether I will or no, have Abigail:
  • He sends her letters, bracelets, jewels, rings.
  • Does she receive them?
  • She? No, Mathias, no, but sends them back,
  • And when he comes, she locks herself up fast;
  • Yet through the keyhole will he talk to her,
  • While she runs to the window looking out,
  • When you should come and hale him from the door.
  • O treacherous Lodowick!
  • Even now as I came home, he slipt me in,270
  • And I am sure he is with Abigail.
  • I'll rouse him thence.
  • Not for all Malta, therefore sheathe your sword;
  • If you love me, no quarrels in my house;
  • But steal you in, and seem to see him not;
  • Edition: current; Page: [52]
  • I'll give him such a warning ere he goes
  • As he shall have small hopes of Abigail.
  • Away, for here they come.
  • Enter Lodowick and Abigail.
  • What, hand in hand! I cannot suffer this.
  • Mathias, as thou lovest me, not a word.280
  • Well, let it pass, another time shall serve.
  • [Exit.
  • Barabas, is not that the widow's son?
  • Ay, and take heed, for he hath sworn your death.
  • My death? what, is the base-born peasant mad?
  • No, no, but happily he stands in fear
  • Of that which you, I think, ne'er dream upon,
  • My daughter here, a paltry silly girl.
  • Why, loves she Don Mathias?
  • Doth she not with her smiling answer you?
  • He has my heart; I smile against my will.290
  • [Aside.
  • Barabas, thou know'st I've loved thy daughter long.
  • And so has she done you, even from a child.
  • And now I can no longer hold my mind.
  • Nor I the affection that I bear to you.
  • This is thy diamond, tell me shall I have it?
  • Win it, and wear it, it is yet unsoiled.
  • O! but I know your lordship would disdain
  • To marry with the daughter of a Jew;
  • And yet I'll give her many a golden cross1
  • With Christian posies round about the ring.300
Edition: current; Page: [53]
  • 'Tis not thy wealth, but her that I esteem.
  • Yet crave I thy consent.
  • And mine you have, yet let me talk to her.—
  • This offspring of Cam, this Jebusite,
  • That never tasted of the Passover,
  • Nor e'er shall see the land of Canaan,
  • Nor our Messias that is yet to come;
  • This gentle maggot, Lodowick, I mean,
  • Must be deluded: let him have thy hand,
  • But keep thy heart till Don Mathias comes.
  • [Aside.310
  • What, shall I be betrothed to Lodowick?
  • It's no sin to deceive a Christian;
  • For they themselves hold it a principle,
  • Faith is not to be held with heretics;
  • But all are heretics that are not Jews;
  • This follows well, and therefore, daughter, fear not.
  • [Aside.
  • I have entreated her, and she will grant.
  • Then, gentle Abigail, plight thy faith to me.
  • I cannot choose, seeing my father bids.—
  • Nothing but death shall part my love and me.
  • [Aside.320
  • Now have I that for which my soul hath longed.
  • So have not I, but yet I hope I shall.
  • [Aside.
  • O wretched Abigail, what hast thou1 done?
  • [Aside.
  • Why on the sudden is your colour changed?
  • I know not, but farewell, I must be gone.
  • Stay her, but let her not speak one word more.
Edition: current; Page: [54]
  • Mute o' the sudden! here's a sudden change.
  • O, muse not at it, 'tis the Hebrews' guise,
  • That maidens new betrothed should weep awhile:
  • Trouble her not; sweet Lodowick, depart:330
  • She is thy wife, and thou shalt be mine heir.
  • O, is't the custom? then I am resolved:
  • But rather let the brightsome heavens be dim,
  • And nature's beauty choke with stifling clouds,
  • Than my fair Abigail should frown on me.—
  • There comes the villain, now I'll be revenged.
  • Enter Mathias.
  • Be quiet, Lodowick, it is enough
  • That I have made thee sure to Abigail.
  • Well, let him go.
  • [Exit.
  • Well, but for me, as you went in at doors340
  • You had been stabbed, but not a word on't now;
  • Suffer me, Barabas, but to follow him.
  • No; so shall I, if any hurt be done,
  • Be made an accessary of your deeds;
  • Revenge it on him when you meet him next.
  • For this I'll have his heart.
  • Do so; lo here I give thee Abigail.
  • What greater gift can poor Mathias have?
  • Shall Lodowick rob me of so fair a love?350
  • My life is not so dear as Abigail.
  • My heart misgives me, that, to cross your love,
  • He's with your mother; therefore after him.
  • What, is he gone unto my mother?
Edition: current; Page: [55]
  • Nay, if you will, stay till she comes herself.
  • I cannot stay; for if my mother come,
  • She'll die with grief.
  • [Exit.
  • I cannot take my leave of him for tears:
  • Father, why have you thus incensed them both?
  • What's that to thee?360
  • I'll make 'em friends again.
  • You'll make 'em friends!
  • Are there not Jews enow in Malta,
  • I will have Don Mathias, he is my love.
  • Yes, you shall have him: go put her in.
  • Ay, I'll put her in.
  • [Puts her in.
  • Now tell me, Ithamore, how lik'st thou this?
  • Faith, master, I think by this
  • You purchase both their lives; is it not so?
  • True; and it shall be cunningly performed.370
  • O master, that I might have a hand in this.
  • Ay, so thou shalt, 'tis thou must do the deed:
  • Take this, and bear it to Mathias straight,
  • [Gives a letter.
  • And tell him that it comes from Lodowick.
  • 'Tis poisoned, is it not?
  • No, no, and yet it might be done that way:
  • It is a challenge feigned from Lodowick.
  • Fear not; I will so set his heart afire,
  • That he shall verily think it comes from him.
  • I cannot choose but like thy readiness:380
  • Yet be not rash, but do it cunningly.
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  • As I behave myself in this, employ me hereafter.
  • Away then.
  • [Exit.
  • So, now will I go in to Lodowick,
  • And, like a cunning spirit, feign some lie,
  • Till I have set 'em both at enmity.
  • [Exit.
Edition: current; Page: [57]



Enter1 Bellamira, a courtesan.

  • Since this town was besieged, my gain grows cold:
  • The time has been that, but for one bare night,
  • A hundred ducats have been freely given:
  • But now against my will I must be chaste;
  • And yet I know my beauty doth not fail.
  • From Venice merchants, and from Padua
  • Were wont to come rare-witted gentlemen,
  • Scholars I mean, learnèd and liberal;
  • And now, save Pilia-Borsa, comes there none,
  • And he is very seldom from my house;10
  • And here he comes.
  • Enter Pilia-Borsa.
  • Hold thee, wench, there's something for thee to spend.
Edition: current; Page: [58]
  • 'Tis silver. I disdain it.
  • Ay, but the Jew has gold,
  • And I will have it, or it shall go hard.
  • Tell me, how cam'st thou by this?
  • 'Faith, walking the back-lanes, through the gardens, I chanced to cast mine eye up to the Jew's counting-house, where I saw some bags of money, and in the night I clambered up with my hooks, and, as I was taking my choice, I heard a rumbling in the house; so I took only this, and run my way: but here's the Jew's man.24
  • Hide the bag.
  • Enter Ithamore.
  • Look not towards him, let's away: zoon's, what a looking thou keep'st; thou'lt betray 's anon.
  • [Exeunt Courtesan and Pilia-Borsa.
  • O the sweetest face that ever I beheld! I know she is a courtesan by her attire: now would I give a hundred of the Jew's crowns that I had such a concubine. Well,31
  • I have delivered the challenge in such sort,
  • As meet they will, and fighting die; brave sport.
  • [Exit.


Enter Mathias.1

  • This is the place, now Abigail shall see Whether Mathias holds her dear or no.
  • Edition: current; Page: [59]
  • Enter Lodowick.1
  • What, dares the villain write in such base terms?
  • [Reading a letter.
  • I did it; and revenge it if thou dar'st.
  • [They fight.
  • Enter Barabas, above.2
  • O! bravely fought; and yet they thrust not home.
  • Now, Lodowick! now, Mathias! So—
  • [Both fall.
  • So now they have showed themselves to be tall3 fellows.
  • [Cries within.] Part 'em, part 'em.
  • Ay, part 'em now they are dead. Farewell, farewell.
  • [Exit.
  • Enter Governor and Mathias'S Mother.
  • What sight is this?—my Lodowick4 slain!10
  • These arms of mine shall be thy sepulchre.5
  • Who is this? my son Mathias slain!
  • O Lodowick! had'st thou perished by the Turk,
  • Wretched Ferneze might have 'venged thy death.
Edition: current; Page: [60]
  • Thy son slew mine, and I'll revenge his death.
  • Look, Katherine, look!— thy son gave mine these wounds.
  • O leave to grieve me, I am grieved enough.
  • O! that my sighs could turn to lively breath;
  • And these my tears to blood, that he might live.
  • Who made them enemies?20
  • I know not, and that grieves me most of all.
  • My son loved thine.
  • And so did Lodowick him.
  • Lend me that weapon that did kill my son,
  • And it shall murder me.
  • Nay, madam, stay; that weapon was my son's,
  • And on that rather should Ferneze die.
  • Hold, let's inquire the causers of their deaths,
  • That we may 'venge their blood upon their heads.
  • Then take them up, and let them be interred
  • Within one sacred monument of stone;30
  • Upon which altar1 I will offer up
  • My daily sacrifice of sighs and tears,
  • And with my prayers pierce impartial2 heavens,
  • Edition: current; Page: [61]
  • Till they [reveal] the causers of our smarts,
  • Which forced their hands divide united hearts:
  • Come, Katherine, our losses equal are,
  • Then of true grief let us take equal share.
  • [Exeunt with the bodies.


Enter Ithamore.1

  • Why, was there ever seen such villainy,
  • So neatly plotted, and so well performed?
  • Both held in hand,2 and flatly both beguiled?
  • Enter Abigail.
  • Why, how now, Ithamore, why laugh'st thou so?
  • O mistress, ha! ha! ha!
  • Why, what ail'st thou?
  • O my master!
  • Ha!
  • O mistress! I have the bravest, gravest, secret, subtle, bottle-nosed knave to my master, that ever gentleman had.11
  • Say, knave, why rail'st upon my father thus?
  • O, my master has the bravest policy.
  • Wherein?
  • Why, know you not?
  • Why, no.
  • Know you not of Mathia[s'] and Don Lodo-wick['s] disaster?
Edition: current; Page: [62]
  • No, what was it?
  • Why, the devil invented a challenge, my master writ it, and I carried it, first to Lodowick, and imprimis to Mathia[s].22
  • And then they met, [and,] as the story says,
  • In doleful wise they ended both their days.
  • And was my father furtherer of their deaths?
  • Am I Ithamore?
  • Yes.
  • So sure did your father write, and I carry the challenge.
  • Well, Ithamore, let me request thee this,30
  • Go to the new-made nunnery, and inquire
  • For any of the Friars of St. Jaques,1
  • And say, I pray them come and speak with me.
  • I pray, mistress, will you answer me but one question?
  • Well, sirrah, what is't?
  • A very feeling one; have not the nuns fine sport with the friars now and then?
  • Go to, sirrah sauce, is this your question? get ye gone.40
  • I will, forsooth, mistress.
  • [Exit.
  • Hard-hearted father, unkind Barabas!
  • Was this the pursuit of thy policy!
  • To make me show them favour severally,
  • That by my favour they should both be slain?
  • Admit thou lov'dst not Lodowick for his sire,2
  • Edition: current; Page: [63]
  • Yet Don Mathias ne'er offended thee:
  • But thou wert set upon extreme revenge,
  • Because the Prior1 dispossessed thee once,
  • And could'st not 'venge it, but upon his son;50
  • Nor on his son, but by Mathias' means;
  • Nor on Mathias, but by murdering me.
  • But I perceive there is no love on earth,
  • Pity in Jews, or piety in Turks.
  • But here comes cursed Ithamore, with the friar.
  • Enter Ithamore and Friar Jacomo.
  • F. Jac. Virgo, salve.
  • When! duck you!2
  • Welcome, grave friar; Ithamore, begone.
  • [Exit Ithamore.
  • Know, holy sir, I am bold to solicit thee.
F. Jac.
  • Wherein?60
  • To get me be admitted for a nun.
F. Jac.
  • Why, Abigail, it is not yet long since
  • That I did labour thy admission,
  • And then thou did'st not like that holy life.
  • Then were my thoughts so frail and unconfirmed,
  • And I was chained to follies of the world:
  • But now experience, purchasèd with grief,
  • Has made me see the difference of things.
  • My sinful soul, alas, hath paced too long
  • Edition: current; Page: [64]
  • The fatal labyrinth of misbelief,70
  • Far from the sun that gives eternal life.
F. Jac.
  • Who taught thee this?
  • The abbess of the house,
  • Whose zealous admonition I embrace:
  • O, therefore, Jacomo, let me be one,
F. Jac.
  • Abigail, I will, but see thou change no more,
  • For that will be most heavy to thy soul.
  • That was my father's fault.
F. Jac.
  • Thy father's! how?
  • Nay, you shall pardon me.—O Barabas,
  • Though thou deservest hardly at my hands,80
  • Yet never shall these lips bewray thy life.
  • [Aside
F. Jac.
  • Come, shall we go?
  • My duty waits on you.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter1 Barabas, reading a letter.

  • What, Abigail become a nun again!
  • False and unkind; what, hast thou lost thy father?
  • And all unknown, and unconstrained of me,
  • Art thou again got to the nunnery?
  • Now here she writes, and wills me to repent.
  • Repentance! Spurca! what pretendeth2 this?
  • Edition: current; Page: [65]
  • I fear she knows—'tis so—of my device
  • In Don Mathias' and Lodovico's deaths:
  • If so, 'tis time that it be seen into:
  • For she that varies from me in belief10
  • Gives great presumption that she loves me not;
  • Or loving, doth dislike of something done.—
  • But who comes here?
  • Enter Ithamore.
  • O Ithamore, come near;
  • Come near, my love; come near, thy master's life,
  • My trusty servant, nay, my second self:1
  • For I have now no hope but even in thee,
  • And on that hope my happiness is built.
  • When saw'st thou Abigail?
  • To-day.
  • With whom?
  • A friar.
  • A friar! false villain, he hath done the deed.20
  • How, sir?
  • Why, made mine Abigail a nun.
  • That's no lie, for she sent me for him.
  • O unhappy day!
  • False, credulous, inconstant Abigail!
  • But let 'em go: and, Ithamore, from hence
  • Ne'er shall she grieve me more with her disgrace;
  • Ne'er shall she live to inherit aught of mine,
  • Be blest of me, nor come within my gates,
  • Edition: current; Page: [66]
  • But perish underneath my bitter curse,
  • Like Cain by Adam for his brother's death.30
  • O master!
  • Ithamore, entreat not for her, I am moved,
  • And she is hateful to my soul and me:
  • And 'less1 thou yield to this that I entreat,
  • I cannot think but that thou hat'st my life.
  • Who, I, master? Why, I'll run to some rock,
  • And throw myself headlong into the sea;
  • O trusty Ithamore, no servant, but my friend:
  • I here adopt thee for mine only heir,40
  • All that I have is thine when I am dead,
  • And whilst I live use half; spend as myself;
  • Here take my keys, I'll give 'em thee anon:
  • Go buy thee garments: but thou shall not want:
  • Only know this, that thus thou art to do:
  • But first go fetch me in the pot of rice
  • I hold my head my master's hungry. I go, sir.
  • [Exit.
  • Thus every villain ambles after wealth,
  • Although he ne'er be richer than in hope:50
  • But, husht!
  • Enter Ithamore with the pot.
  • Here 'tis, master.
  • Well said, Ithamore; what, hast thou brought
  • The ladle with thee too?
Edition: current; Page: [67]
  • Yes, sir, the proverb says he that eats with the devil had need of a long spoon.1 I have brought you a ladle.
  • Very well, Ithamore, then now be secret;
  • And for thy sake, whom I so dearly love,
  • Now shalt thou see the death of Abigail,60
  • That thou may'st freely live to be my heir.
  • Why, master, will you poison her with a mess of rice porridge? that will preserve life, make her round and plump, and batten more than you are aware.
  • Ay, but, Ithamore, seest thou this?
  • It is a precious powder that I bought
  • Of an Italian, in Ancona, once,
  • Whose operation is to bind, infect,
  • And poison deeply, yet not appear
  • In forty hours after it is ta'en.70
  • How, master?
  • Thus, Ithamore.
  • This even they use in Malta here,—'tis called
  • Saint Jacques' Even,—and then I say they use
  • To send their alms unto the nunneries:
  • Among the rest bear this, and set it there;
  • There's a dark entry where they take it in,
  • Where they must neither see the messenger,
  • Nor make inquiry who hath sent it them.
  • How so?80
  • Belike there is some ceremony in't.
  • Edition: current; Page: [68]
  • There, Ithamore, must thou go place this pot!1
  • Stay, let me spice it first.
  • Pray do, and let me help you, master. Pray let me taste first.
  • Prythee do: what say'st thou now?
  • Troth, master, I'm loth such a pot of pottage should be spoiled.
  • Peace, Ithamore, 'tis better so than spared.
  • Assure thyself thou shalt have broth by the eye,290
  • My purse, my coffer, and myself is thine.
  • Well, master, I go.
  • Stay, first let me stir it, Ithamore.
  • As fatal be it to her as the draught
  • Of which great Alexander drunk and died:
  • And with her let it work like Borgia's wine,
  • Whereof his sire, the Pope, was poisonèd.
  • In few,3 the blood of Hydra, Lerna's bane:
  • The juice of hebon,4 and Cocytus' breath,
  • And all the poisons of the Stygian pool100
  • Break from the fiery kingdom; and in this
  • Vomit your venom and invenom her
  • That like a fiend hath left her father thus.
  • “Upon my secure hour thy uncle stole
  • With juice of cursed hebenon in a vial.”
Edition: current; Page: [69]
  • What a blessing has he given't! was ever pot of rice porridge so sauced! What shall I do with it?
  • O, my sweet Ithamore, go set it down,
  • And come again so soon as thou hast done,
  • For I have other business for thee.
  • Here's a drench to poison a whole stable of Flanders mares: I'll carry 't to the nuns with a powder.
  • And the horse pestilence to boot; away!111
  • I am gone.
  • Pay me my wages, for my work is done.
  • [Exit.
  • I'll pay thee with a vengeance, Ithamore.
  • [Exit.


Enter1 Governor, Del Bosco, Knights, Basso.

  • Welcome, great Basso;2 how fares Calymath,
  • What wind thus drives you into Malta Road?
  • The wind that bloweth all the world besides,
  • Desire of gold.
  • Desire of gold, great sir?
  • That's to be gotten in the Western Ind:
  • In Malta are no golden minerals.
  • To you of Malta thus saith Calymath:
  • The time you took for respite is at hand,
  • For the performance of your promise passed,
  • And for the tribute-money I am sent.10
Edition: current; Page: [70]
  • Basso, in brief, 'shalt have no tribute here,
  • Nor shall the heathens live upon our spoil:
  • First will we raze the city walls ourselves,
  • Lay waste the island, hew the temples down,
  • And, shipping off our goods to Sicily,
  • Open an entrance for the wasteful sea,
  • Whose billows beating the resistless banks,
  • Shall overflow it with their refluence.
  • Well, Governor, since thou hast broke the league
  • By flat denial of the promised tribute,20
  • Talk not of razing down your city walls,
  • You shall not need trouble yourselves so far,
  • For Selim Calymath shall come himself,
  • And with brass bullets batter down your towers,
  • And turn proud Malta to a wilderness
  • For these intolerable wrongs of yours;
  • And so farewell.
  • Farewell:
  • And now, ye men of Malta, look about,
  • And let's provide to welcome Calymath:30
  • Close your portcullis, charge your basilisks,
  • And as you profitably take up arms,
  • So now courageously encounter them;
  • For by this answer, broken is the league,
  • And naught is to be looked for now but wars,
  • And naught to us more welcome is than wars.
  • [Exeunt.
Edition: current; Page: [71]


Enter1 Friar Jacomo and Friar Barnardine.

  • O brother, brother, all the nuns are sick,
  • And physic will not help them: they must die.
F. Barn.
  • The abbess sent for me to be confessed:
  • O, what a sad confession will there be!
F. Jac.
  • And so did fair Maria send for me:
  • I'll to her lodging: hereabouts she lies.
  • [Exit.
F. Barn.
  • What, all dead, save only Abigail?
  • And I shall die too, for I feel death coming.
  • Where is the friar that conversed with me?
F. Barn.
  • O, he is gone to see the other nuns.10
  • I sent for him, but seeing you are come,
  • Be you my ghostly father: and first know,
  • That in this house I lived religiously,
  • Chaste, and devout, much sorrowing for my sins;
  • But ere I came—
F. Barn.
  • What then?
  • I did offend high Heaven so grievously,
  • As I am almost desperate for my sins:
  • And one offence torments me more than all.
  • You knew Mathias and Don Lodowick?20
F. Barn.
  • Yes, what of them?
  • My father did contract me to 'em both:
  • Edition: current; Page: [72]
  • First to Don Lodowick; him I never loved;
  • Mathias was the man that I held dear,
  • And for his sake did I become a nun.
F. Barn.
  • So, say how was their end?
  • Both jealous of my love, envied each other,
  • And by my father's practice, which is there
  • [Gives a paper.
  • Set down at large, the gallants were both slain.
F. Barn.
  • O monstrous villainy!30
  • To work my peace, this I confess to thee;
  • Reveal it not, for then my father dies.
F. Barn.
  • Know that confession must not be revealed,
  • The canon law forbids it, and the priest
  • That makes it known, being degraded first,
  • So I have heard; pray, therefore keep it close.
  • Death seizeth on my heart: ah gentle friar,
  • Convert my father that he may be saved,
  • And witness that I die a Christian.
  • [Dies.40
F. Barn.
  • Ay, and a virgin too; that grieves me most:
  • But I must to the Jew and exclaim on him,
  • And make him stand in fear of me.
  • Enter Friar Jacomo.
F. Jac.
  • O brother, all the nuns are dead, let's bury them.
F. Barn.
  • First help to bury this, then go with me And help me to exclaim against the Jew.
F. Jac.
  • Why, what has he done?
Edition: current; Page: [73]
F. Barn.
  • A thing that makes me tremble to unfold.
F. Jac.
  • What, has he crucified a child?
F. Barn.
  • No, but a worse thing: 'twas told me in shrift,50
  • Thou know'st 'tis death an if it be revealed.
  • Come, let's away.
  • [Exeunt.
Edition: current; Page: [74]



Enter1 Barabas and Ithamore. Bells within.

  • There is no music to2 a Christian's knell:
  • How sweet the bells ring now the nuns are dead,
  • That sound at other times like tinkers' pans!
  • I was afraid the poison had not wrought;
  • Or, though it wrought, it would have done no good,
  • For every year they swell, and yet they live;
  • Now all are dead, not one remains alive.
  • That's brave, master, but think you it will not be known?
  • How can it, if we two be secret?
  • For my part fear you not.10
  • I'd cut thy throat if I did.
  • And reason too.
  • But here's a royal monastery hard by;
  • Good master, let me poison all the monks.
  • Thou shalt not need, for now the nuns are dead They'll die with grief.
Edition: current; Page: [75]
  • Do you not sorrow for your daughter's death?
  • No, but I grieve because she lived so long.
  • An Hebrew born, and would become a Christian!
  • Cazzo,1 diabolo.20
  • Enter the two Friars.
  • Look, look, master, here come two religious caterpillars.
  • I smelt 'em ere they came.
  • God-a-mercy, nose! come, let's begone.
F. Barn.
  • Stay, wicked Jew, repent, I say, and stay.
  • I fear they know we sent the poisoned broth.
  • And so do I, master; therefore speak 'em fair.
F. Barn.
  • Barabas, thou hast—
F. Jac.
  • Ay, that thou hast—30
  • True, I have money, what though I have?
F. Barn.
  • Thou art a—
F. Jac.
  • Ay, that thou art, a—
  • What needs all this? I know I am a Jew.
F. Barn.
  • Thy daughter—
F. Jac.
  • Ay, thy daughter—
  • O speak not of her! then I die with grief.
F. Barn.
  • Remember that—
F. Jac.
  • Ay, remember that—39
  • I must needs say that I have been a great usurer.
F. Barn.
  • Thou hast committed—
  • Fornication—but that
  • Edition: current; Page: [76]
  • Was in anothen country: and besides,
  • The wench is dead.
F. Barn.
  • Ay, but, Barabas,
  • Remember Mathias and Don Lodowick.
  • Why, what of them?
F. Barn.
  • I will not say that by a forged challenge they met.
  • She has confest, and we are both undone,
  • My bosom inmate!1 but I must dissemble.—
  • [Aside.50
  • O holy friars, the burthen of my sins
  • Lie heavy on my soul; then pray you tell me,
  • Is't not too late now to turn Christian?
  • I have been zealous in the Jewish faith,
  • Hard-hearted to the poor, a covetous wretch,
  • That would for lucre's sake have sold my soul.
  • A hundred for a hundred I have ta'en;
  • And now for store of wealth may I compare
  • With all the Jews in Malta; but what is wealth?
  • I am a Jew, and therefore am I lost.60
  • Would penance serve for this my sin,
  • I could afford to whip myself to death—
  • And so could I; but penance will not serve.
  • To fast, to pray, and wear a shirt of hair,
  • And on my knees creep to Jerusalem.
  • Cellars of wine, and sollers2 full of wheat,
  • Warehouses stuft with spices and with drugs,
  • Whole chests of gold, in bullion, and in coin,
  • Edition: current; Page: [77]
  • Besides I know not how much weight in pearl,
  • Orient and round, have I within my house;70
  • At Alexandria, merchandise unsold:1
  • But yesterday two ships went from this town,
  • Their voyage will be worth ten thousand crowns.
  • In Florence, Venice, Antwerp, London, Seville,
  • Frankfort, Lubeck, Moscow, and where not,
  • Have I debts owing; and in most of these,
  • Great sums of money lying in the banco;
  • All this I'll give to some religious house
  • So I may be baptized, and live therein.
F. Jac.
  • O good Barabas, come to our house.80
F. Barn.
  • O no, good Barabas, come to our house;
  • And, Barabas, you know—
  • I know that I have highly sinned.
F. Jac.
  • O Barabas, their laws are strict.
  • I know they are, and I will be with you.
  • [To F. Jac.
F Barn.
  • They wear no shirts, and they go barefoot too.
  • Then 'tis not for me; and I am resolved
  • [To F. Barn.
  • You shall confess me, and have all my goods.
F. Jac.
  • Good Barabas, come to me.90
  • You see I answer him, and yet he stays;
  • [To F. Barn.
  • Rid him away, and go you home with me.
F. Jac.
  • I'll be with you to-night.
Edition: current; Page: [78]
  • Come to my house at one o'clock this night.
  • [To F. Jac.
F. Jac.
  • You hear your answer, and you may be gone.
F. Barn.
  • Why, go get you away.
F. Jac.
  • I will not go for thee.
F. Barn.
  • Not! then I'll make thee go.
F. Jac.
  • How, dost call me rogue?
  • [They fight.
  • Part 'em, master, part 'em.100
  • This is mere frailty, brethren; be content.
  • Friar Barnardine, go you with Ithamore:
  • You1 know my mind, let me alone with him.
  • [Aside to F. Barn.
F. Jac.
  • Why does he go to thy house? let him begone.
  • I'll give him something and so stop his mouth.
  • [Exit Ithamore with F. Barn.
  • I never heard of any man but he
  • Maligned the order of the Jacobins:
  • But do you think that I believe his words?
  • Why, brother, you converted Abigail;
  • And I am bound in charity to requite it,110
  • And so I will. O Jacomo, fail not, but come.
F. Jac.
  • But, Barabas, who shall be your godfathers,
  • For presently you shall be shrived.
  • Marry, the Turk2 shall be one of my godfathers,
  • But not a word to any of your covent.3
F. Jac.
  • I warrant thee, Barabas.
  • [Exit.
  • So, now the fear is past, and I am safe:
  • Edition: current; Page: [79]
  • For he that shrived her is within my house,
  • What if I murdered him ere Jacomo comes?
  • Now I have such a plot for both their lives120
  • As never Jew nor Christian knew the like;
  • One turned my daughter, therefore he shall die;
  • The other knows enough to have my life,
  • Therefore 'tis not requisite he should live.
  • But are not both these wise men to suppose
  • That I will leave my house, my goods, and all
  • To fast and be well whipt? I'll none of that.
  • Now Friar Barnardine I come to you,
  • I'll feast you, lodge you, give you fair words,
  • And after that, I and my trusty Turk—130
  • No more but so: it must and shall be done.
  • [Exit.


Enter1 Barabas and Ithamore.

  • Ithamore, tell me, is the friar asleep?
  • Yes; and I know not what the reason is,
  • Do what I can he will not strip himself,
  • Nor go to bed, but sleeps in his own clothes;
  • I fear me he mistrusts what we intend.
  • No, 'tis an order which the friars use:
  • Yet, if he knew our meanings, could he 'scape?
  • No, none can hear him, cry he ne'er so loud.
  • Why, true, therefore did I place him there:
  • The other chambers open towards the street.10
Edition: current; Page: [80]
  • You loiter, master, wherefore stay we thus?
  • O how I long to see him shake his heels.
  • Come on, sirrah.
  • Off with your girdle, make a handsome noose;
  • [Ithamore makes a noose in his girdle. They put it round the Friar's neck.
  • Friar, awake!
F. Barn.
  • What, do you mean to strangle me?
  • Yes, 'cause you use to confess.
  • Blame not us but the proverb, Confess and be hanged; pull hard.
F. Barn.
  • What, will you have1 my life?20
  • Pull hard, I say; you would have had my goods.
  • Ay, and our lives too, therefore pull amain.
  • [They strangle him
  • 'Tis neatly done, sir, here's no print at all.
  • Then it is as it should be; take him up.
  • Nay, master, be ruled by me a little [Stands up the body]; so, let him lean upon his staff; excellent! he stands as if he were begging of bacon.
  • Who would not think but that this friar lived?
  • What time o' night is't now, sweet Ithamore?
  • Towards one.30
  • Then will not Jacomo be long from hence.
  • [Exeunt.
Edition: current; Page: [81]


Enter1 Friar Jacomo.

F. Jac.
  • This is the hour wherein I shall proceed;
  • O happy hour,2 wherein I shall convert
  • An infidel, and bring his gold into our treasury!
  • But soft, is not this Barnardine? it is;
  • And, understanding I should come this way,
  • Stands here a purpose, meaning me some wrong,
  • And intercept my going to the Jew.
  • Barnardine!
  • Wilt thou not speak? thou think'st I see thee not;
  • Away, I'd wish thee, and let me go by:10
  • No, wilt thou not? nay, then, I'll force my way;
  • And see, a staff stands ready for the purpose:
  • As thou lik'st that, stop me another time.
  • [Strikes him and he falls.
  • Enter Barabas and Ithamore.
  • Why, how now, Jacomo, what hast thou done?
F. Jac.
  • Why, stricken him that would have struck at me.
  • Who is it?
  • Barnardine? now out, alas! he's slain.
  • Ay, master, he's slain; look how his brains drop out on's nose.
Edition: current; Page: [82]
F. Jac.
  • Good sirs, I have done 't, but nobody knows it but you two—I may escape.21
  • So might my man and I hang with you for company.
  • No, let us bear him to the magistrates.
F. Jac.
  • Good Barabas, let me go.
  • No, pardon me; the law must have its course.
  • I must be forced to give in evidence,
  • That being importuned by this Barnardine
  • To be a Christian, I shut him out,
  • And there he sat: now I, to keep my word,30
  • And give my goods and substance to your house,
  • Was up thus early; with intent to go
  • Fie upon 'em, master; will you turn Christian when holy friars turn devils and murder one another?
  • No, for this example I'll remain a Jew:
  • Heaven bless me; what! a friar a murderer?
  • When shall you see a Jew commit the like?
  • Why, a Turk could ha' done no more.
  • To-morrow is the sessions; you shall to it.40
  • Come, Ithamore, let's help to take him hence.
F. Jac.
  • Villains, I am a sacred person; touch me not.
  • The law shall touch you, we'll but lead you, we:
  • 'Las I could weep at your calamity.
  • Take in the staff too, for that must be shown:
  • Law wills that each particular be known.
  • [Exeunt.
Edition: current; Page: [83]


Enter1 Bellamira AND Pilia-Borsa.

  • Pilia-Borsa, did'st thou meet with Ithamore?
  • I did.
  • And didst thou deliver my letter?
  • I did.
  • And what think'st thou? will he come?
  • I think so, but yet I cannot tell; for at the reading of the letter he look'd like a man of another world.
  • Why so?
  • That such a base slave as he should be saluted by such a tall man as I am, from such a beautiful dame as you.12
  • And what said he?
  • Not a wise word, only gave me a nod, as who should say, “Is it even so?” and so I left him, being driven to a non-plus at the critical aspect of my terrible countenance.
  • And where didst meet him?
  • Upon mine own freehold, within forty feet of the gallows, conning his neck-verse,2 I take it, looking of a friar's execution, whom I saluted with an old hempen proverb, Hodie tibi, cras mihi, and so I left him to the Edition: current; Page: [84] mercy of the hangman: but the exercise1 being done, see where he comes.24
  • Enter Ithamore.
  • I never knew a man take his death so patiently as this friar; he was ready to leap off ere the halter was about his neck; and when the hangman had put on his hempen tippet, he made such haste to his prayers, as if he had had another cure to serve; well, go whither he will, I'll be none of his followers in haste: and, now I think on't, going to the execution, a fellow met me with a muschatoes2 like a raven's wing, and a dagger with a hilt like a warming-pan, and he gave me a letter from one Madam Bellamira, saluting me in such sort as if he had meant to make clean my boots with his lips; the effect was, that I should come to her house. I wonder what the reason is; it may be she sees more in me than I can find in myself: for she writes further, that she loves me ever since she saw me, and who would not requite such love? Here's her house, and here she comes, and now would I were gone; I am not worthy to look upon her.41
  • This is the gentleman you writ to.
  • Gentleman! he flouts me; what gentry can be in a poor Turk of tenpence?3 I'll be gone.
  • [Aside.
Edition: current; Page: [85]
  • Is't not a sweet-faced youth, Pilia?
  • Again, “sweet youth;” [Aside]—did not you, sir, bring the sweet youth a letter?
  • I did, sir, and from this gentlewoman, who, as myself, and the rest of the family, stand or fall at your service.50
  • Though woman's modesty should hale me back, I can withhold no longer; welcome, sweet love.
  • Now am I clean, or rather foully out of the way.
  • [Aside.
  • Whither so soon?
  • I'll go steal some money from my master to make me handsome [Aside].—Pray pardon me, I must go and see a ship discharged.
  • Canst thou be so unkind to leave me thus?
  • And ye did but know how she loves you, sir.
  • Nay, I care not how much she loves me. Sweet Bellamira, would I had my master's wealth for thy sake.
  • And you can have it, sir, an if you please.63
  • If 'twere above ground I could and would have it; but he hides and buries it up, as partridges do their eggs, under the earth.
  • And is't not possible to find it out?
  • By no means possible.
  • What shall we do with this base villain then?
  • [Aside to Pilia-Borsa.
  • Let me alone; do you but speak him fair.—
  • [Aside to her.
  • But [sir] you know some secrets of the Jew,71
  • Which, if they were revealed, would do him harm.
Edition: current; Page: [86]
  • Ay, and such as—Go to, no more. I'll make him send me half he has, and glad he scapes so too.
  • [Pen and ink.1
  • I'll write unto him; we'll have money straight.
  • Send for a hundred crowns at least.
  • Ten hundred thousand crowns—Master Barabas,
  • [Writing.
  • Write not so submissively, but threatening him.
  • Sirrah, Barabas, send me a hundred crowns.
  • Put in two hundred at least.
  • I charge thee send me three hundred by this bearer, and this shall be your warrant; if you do not, no more, but so.83
  • Tell him you will confess.
  • Otherwise I'll confess all—Vanish, and return in a twinkle.
  • Let me alone; I'll use him in his kind.
  • [Exit Pilia-Borsa.
  • Hang him, Jew!
  • Now, gentle Ithamore, lie in my lap.
  • Where are my maids? provide a running2 banquet;90
  • Send to the merchant, bid him bring me silks,
  • Shall Ithamore, my love, go in such rags?
  • And bid the jeweller come hither too.
  • I have no husband, sweet; I'll marry thee.
  • Content, but we will leave this paltry land,
  • Edition: current; Page: [87]
  • And sail from hence to Greece, to lovely Greece.
  • I'll be thy Jason, thou my golden fleece;
  • Where painted carpets o'er the meads are hurled,
  • And Bacchus' vineyards overspread the world;
  • Where woods and forests go in goodly green,
  • I'll be Adonis, thou shalt be Love's Queen.
  • The meads, the orchards, and the primrose-lanes,
  • Instead of sedge and reed, bear sugar-canes:
  • Thou in those groves, by Dis above,
  • Shalt live with me and be my love.
  • Whither will I not go with gentle Ithamore?
  • Enter Pilia-Borsa.
  • How now! hast thou the gold?
  • Yes.
  • But came it freely? did the cow give down her milk freely?
  • At reading of the letter, he stared and stamped and turned aside. I took him by the beard,1 and looked upon him thus; told him he were best to send it; then he hugged and embraced me.114
  • Itha, Rather for fear than love.
  • Then, like a Jew, he laughed and jeered, and told me he loved me for your sake, and said what a faithful servant you had been.
  • The more villain he to keep me thus; here's goodly'parel, is there not?120
  • To conclude, he gave me ten crowns.
  • But ten? I'll not leave him worth a grey groat.
  • Edition: current; Page: [88]
  • Give me a ream1 of paper; we'll have a kingdom of gold for't.
  • Write for five hundred crowns.
  • [Writing.] Sirrah, Jew, as you love your life sena five hundred crowns, and give the bearer one hundred.
  • Tell him I must have't.
  • I warrant your worship shall have't.
  • And if he ask why I demand so much, tell him I scorn to write a line under a hundred crowns.131
  • You'd make a rich poet, sir. I am gone.
  • [Exit.
  • Take thou the money; spend it for my sake.
  • 'Tis not thy money, but thyself I weigh:
  • Thus Bellamira esteems of gold. [Throws it on the floor.
  • But thus of thee.
  • [Kisses him.
  • That kiss again; she runs division2 of my lips.
  • What an eye she casts on me? It twinkles like a star.
  • Come, my dear love, let's in and sleep together.
  • O, that ten thousand nights were put in one, that we might sleep seven years together afore we wake.
  • Come, amorous wag, first banquet, and then sleep.
  • [Exeunt.142


Enter3 Barabas, reading a letter.

  • “Barabas, send me three hundred crowns.”
  • Plam Barabas: O, that wicked courtesan!
Edition: current; Page: [89]
  • He was not wont to call me Barabas.
  • ” Or else I will confess: “ay, there it goes:
  • But, if I get him, coupe de gorge for that.
  • He sent a shaggy tottered1 staring slave,
  • That when he speaks draws out his grisly beard,
  • And winds it twice or thrice about his ear;2
  • Whose face has been a grindstone for men's swords;
  • His hands are hacked, some fingers cut quite off;10
  • Who, when he speaks, grunts like a hog, and looks
  • Like one that is employed in catzerie3
  • And crossbiting,4—such a rogue
  • As is the husband to a hundred whores:
  • And I by him must send three hundred crowns!
  • Well, my hope is, he will not stay there still;
  • And when he comes: O, that he were but here!
  • Enter Pilia-Borsa.
  • Jew, I must have more gold.
  • Why, want'st thou any of thy tale?
  • No; but three hundred will not serve his turn.20
  • Not serve his turn, sir?
Edition: current; Page: [90]
  • No, sir; and, therefore, I must have five hundred more.
  • I'll rather—
  • O good words, sir, and send it you were best; see, there's his letter.
  • [Gives letter.
  • Might he not as well come as send; pray bid him come and fetch it; what he writes for you, ye shall have straight.
  • Ay, and the rest too, or else—30
  • I must make this villain away.
  • [Aside.
  • Please you dine with me, sir;—and you shall be most heartily poisoned.
  • [Aside.
  • No, God-a-mercy. Shall I have these crowns?
  • I cannot do it, I have lost my keys.
  • O, if that be all, I can pick ope your locks.
  • Or climb up to my counting-house window: you know my meaning.
  • I know enough, and therefore talk not to me of your counting-house. The gold, or know, Jew, it is in my power to hang thee.41
  • I am betrayed.
  • [Aside.
  • 'Tis not five hundred crowns that I esteem,
  • I am not moved at that: this angers me,
  • That he who knows I love him as myself,
  • Should write in this imperious vein. Why, sir,
  • You know I have no child, and unto whom
  • Should I leave all but unto Ithamore?
  • Here's many words, but no crowns: the crowns!50
Edition: current; Page: [91]
  • Commend me to him, sir, most humbly,
  • And unto your good mistress, as unknown.
  • Speak, shall I have 'em, sir?
  • Sir, here they are.
  • O, that I should part with so much gold!
  • [Aside.
  • Here, take 'em, fellow, with as good a will—
  • As I would see thee hang'd [Aside]; O, love stops my breath:
  • Never loved man servant as I do Ithamore.
  • I know it, sir.
  • Pray, when, sir, shall I see you at my house?
  • Soon enough, to your cost, sir. Fare you well.60
  • [Exit.
  • Nay, to thine own cost, villain, if thou com'st.
  • Was ever Jew tormented as I am?
  • To have a shag-rag knave to come,—
  • Three hundred crowns,—and then five hundred crowns!
  • Well, I must seek a means to rid 'em all,
  • And presently; for in his villainy
  • He will tell all he knows, and I shall die for't
  • I have it:
  • I will in some disguise go see the slave,
  • And how the villain revels with my gold.70
  • [Exit.


Enter1 Bellamira, Ithamore, and Pilia-Borsa.

  • I'll pledge thee, love, and therefore drink it off.
Edition: current; Page: [92]
  • Say'st thou me so? have at it; and do you hear?
  • [Whispers.
  • Go to, it shall be so.
  • Of that condition I will drink it up.
  • Here's to thee.
  • Nay, I'll have all or none.
  • There, if thou lov'st me do not leave a drop.
  • Love thee! fill me three glasses.
  • Three and fifty dozen, I'll pledge thee.
  • Knavely spoke, and like a knight-at-arms.
  • Hey, Rivo2 Castiliano! a man's a man.10
  • Now to the Jew.
  • Ha! to the Jew, and send me money he3 were best.
  • What would'st thou do if he should send thee none?
  • Do nothing; but I know what I know; he's a murderer.
  • I had not thought he had been so brave a man.
  • You knew Mathias and the Governor's son; he and I killed 'em both, and yet never touched 'em.
  • O, bravely done.20
  • I carried the broth that poisoned the nuns; and he and I, snickle hand too fast,4 strangled a friar.
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  • You two alone!
  • We two, and 'twas never known, nor never shall be for me.
  • This shall with me unto the Governor.
  • [Aside to Bellamira.
  • And fit it should: but first let's ha' more gold.
  • [Aside.
  • Come, gentle Ithamore, lie in my lap.
  • Love me little, love me long; let music rumble
  • Whilst I in thy incony1 lap do tumble.30
  • Enter Barabas, with a lute, disguised.
  • A French musician; come, let's hear your skill?
  • Must tuna my lute for sound, twang, twang, first.
  • Wilt drink, Frenchman? here's to thee with a—Pox on this drunken hiccup!
  • Gramercy, monsieur.
  • Prythee, Pilia-Borsa, bid the fiddler give me the posy in his hat there.
  • Sirrah, you must give my mistress your posy.
  • A votre commandement, madame.40
  • How sweet, my Ithamore, the flowers smell.
  • Like thy breath, sweetheart, no violet like 'em.
  • Foh! methinks they stink like a hollyhock.
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  • So, now I am revenged upon 'em all.
  • The scent thereof was death; I poisoned it.
  • [Aside.
  • Play, fiddler, or I'll cut your cat's guts into chitterlings.
  • Pardonnez moi, be no in tune yet; so now, now all be in.
  • Give him a crown, and fill me out more wine.50
  • There's two crowns for thee, play.
  • How liberally the villain gives me mine own gold.
  • [Aside.
  • Methinks he fingers very well.
  • So did you when you stole my gold.
  • [Aside.
  • How swift he runs.
  • You run swifter when you threw my gold out of my window.
  • [Aside.
  • Musician, hast been in Malta long?
  • Two, three, four month, madam.60
  • Dost not know a Jew, one Barabas?
  • Very mush; monsieur, you no be his man?
  • His man?
  • I scorn the peasant; tell him so.
  • He knows it already.
  • [Aside.
  • 'Tis a strange thing of that Jew, he lives upon pickled grasshoppers and sauced mushrooms.
  • What a slave's this? the Governor feeds not as I do.
  • [Aside.
  • He never put on clean shirt since he was circumcised.70
  • O rascal! I change myself twice a day.
  • [Aside.
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  • The hat he wears, Judas left under the elder1 when he hanged himself.
  • 'Twas sent me for a present from the great Cham.
  • [Aside.
  • A musty2 slave he is; whither now, fiddler?
  • Pardonnez moi, monsieur, me3 be no well.
  • [Exit.
  • Farewell, fiddler: one letter more to the Jew.
  • Prythee, sweet love, one more, and write it sharp.80
  • No, I'll send by word of mouth now; bid him deliver thee a thousand crowns, by the same token, that the nuns loved rice,—that Friar Barnardine slept in his own clothes; any of 'em will do it.
  • Let me alone to urge it, now I know the meaning.
  • The meaning has a meaning; come let's in:
  • To undo a Jew is charity, and not sin.
  • [Exeunt.
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Enter1 Governor, Knights, and Martin del Bosco.

  • Now, gentlemen, betake you to your arms,
  • And see that Malta be well fortified;
  • And it behoves you to be resolute;
  • For Calymath, having hovered here so long,
  • Will win the town or die before the walls.
  • And die he shall, for we will never yield.
  • Enter Bellamira and Pilia-Borsa.
  • O, bring us to the Governor.
  • Away with her; she is a courtesan.
  • Whate'er I am, yet, Governor, hear me speak;
  • I bring thee news by whom thy son was slain:10
  • Mathias did it not; it was the Jew.
  • Who, besides the slaughter of these gentlemen,
  • Poisoned his own daughter and the nuns,
  • Strangled a friar, and I know not what
  • Mischief besides.
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  • Had we but proof of this—
  • Strong proof, my lord; his man's now at my lodging,
  • That was his agent; he'll confess it all.
  • Go fetch him straight [Exeunt Officers]. I always feared that Jew.
  • Enter Officers with Barabas and Ithamore.
  • I'll go alone; dogs, do not hale me thus.
  • Nor me neither, I cannot outrun you, constable:
  • O my belly!21
  • One dram of powder more had made all sure;
  • What a damned slave was I!
  • [Aside.
  • Make fires, heat irons, let the rack be fetched.
  • Nay, stay, my lord,'t may be he will confess?
  • Confess! what mean you, lords? who should confess?
  • Thou and thy Turk; 'twas you that slew my son.
  • Guilty, my lord, I confess: your son and Mathias were both contracted unto Abigail; [he] forged a counter feit challenge.30
  • Who carried that challenge?
  • I carried it, I confess; but who writ it? Marry, even he that strangled Barnardine, poisoned the nuns and his own daughter.
  • Away with him, his sight is death to me.
  • For what, you men of Malta? hear me speak:
  • She is a courtesan, and he a thief,
  • And he my bondman. Let me have law,
  • For none of this can prejudice my life.39
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  • Once more, away with him; you shall have law.
  • Devils, do your worst, I live in spite of you.
  • [Aside.
  • As these have spoke, so be it to their souls!—
  • I hope the poisoned flowers will work anon.
  • [Aside.
  • [Exeunt.
  • Enter the Mother of Mathias.
  • Was my Mathias murdered by the Jew?
  • Ferneze, 'twas thy son that murdered him.
  • Be patient, gentle madam, it was he.
  • He forged the daring challenge made them fight.
  • Where is the Jew? where is that murderer?
  • In prison till the law has past on him.49
  • Enter Officer.
  • My lord, the courtesan and her man are dead:
  • So is the Turk and Barabas the Jew.
  • Dead!
  • Dead, my lord, and here they bring his body.
  • This sudden death of his is very strange.
  • Re-enter Officers carrying Barabas as dead.
  • Wonder not at it, sir, the heavens are just;
  • Their deaths were like their lives, then think not of 'em;
  • Since they are dead, let them be burièd.
  • For the Jew's body, throw that o'er the walls,
  • To be a prey for vultures and wild beasts.
  • So now away, and fortify the town.60
  • [Exeunt all, leaving Barabas on the floor.1
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  • [Rising.] What, all alone? well fare, sleepy drink.
  • I'll be revenged on this accursèd town;
  • For by my means Calymath shall enter in.
  • I'll help to slay their children and their wives,
  • To fire the churches, pull their houses down,
  • Take my goods too, and seize upon my lands:
  • I hope to see the Governor a slave,
  • And, rowing in a galley, whipt to death.
  • Enter Calymath, Bassoes, and Turks.
  • Whom have we here, a spy?
  • Yes, my good lord, one that can spy a place70
  • Where you may enter, and surprise the town:
  • My name is Barabas: I am a Jew.
  • Art thou that Jew whose goods we heard were sold
  • For tribute-money?
  • The very same, my lord:
  • And since that time they have hired a slave, my man,
  • To accuse me of a thousand villanies:
  • I was imprisoned, but escaped their hands.
  • Did'st break prison?
  • No, no;
  • I drank of poppy and cold mandrake juice:180
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  • And being asleep, belike they thought me dead,
  • And threw me o'er the walls: so, or how else,
  • The Jew is here, and rests at your command.
  • 'Twas bravely done: but tell me, Barabas,
  • Canst thou, as thou report'st, make Malta ours?
  • Fear not, my lord, for here against the sluice,1
  • The rock is hollow, and of purpose digged,
  • To make a passage for the running streams
  • And common channels of the city.
  • Now, whilst you give assault unto the walls,90
  • I'll lead five hundred soldiers through the vault,
  • And rise with them i' the middle of the town,
  • Open the gates for you to enter in,
  • If this be true, I'll make thee governor.
  • And if it be not true, then let me die.
  • Thou'st doomed thyself. Assault it presently.
  • [Exeunt.


Alarms. Enter2 Turks, Barabas, &c.; Governor and Knights prisoners.

  • Now vail3 your pride, you captive Christians,
  • And kneel for mercy to your conquering foe:
  • Now where's the hope you had of haughty Spain?
  • Edition: current; Page: [101]
  • Ferneze, speak, had it not been much better
  • T'have1 kept thy promise than be thus surprised?
  • What should I say? We are captives and must yield.
  • Ay, villains, you must yield, and under Turkish yokes
  • Shall groaning bear the burden of our ire;
  • And, Barabas, as erst we promised thee,
  • For thy desert we make thee governor;10
  • Use them at thy discretion.
  • Thanks, my lord.
  • O fatal day, to fall into the hand
  • Of such a traitor and unhallowed Jew!
  • 'Tis our command: and, Barabas, we give
  • To guard thy person these our Janizaries:
  • Entreat them well, as we have usèd thee.
  • And now, brave bassoes, come, we'll walk about
  • The ruined town, and see the wreck we made:
  • Farewell, brave Jew; farewell, great Barabas!20
  • [Exeunt Calymath and Bassoes.
  • May all good fortune follow Calymath.
  • And now, as entrance to our safety,
  • To prison with the Governor and these
  • O villain, Heaven will be revenged on thee.
  • [Exeunt.
  • Away, no more, let him not trouble me.
  • Edition: current; Page: [102]
  • Thus1 hast thou gotten, by thy policy,
  • No simple place, no small authority,
  • I now am governor of Malta; true,
  • But Malta hates me, and, in hating me,30
  • My life's in danger, and what boots it thee,
  • Poor Barabas, to be the governor,
  • Whenas thy life shall be at their command?
  • No, Barabas, this must be looked into;
  • And since by wrong thou got'st authority,
  • Maintain it bravely by firm policy.
  • At least unprofitably lose it not:
  • For he that liveth in authority,
  • And neither gets him friends, nor fills his bags,
  • Lives like the ass that Æsop speaketh of,40
  • That labours with a load of bread and wine,
  • And leaves it off to snap on thistle-tops:
  • But Barabas will be more circumspect.
  • Begin betimes; occasion's bald behind,
  • Slip not thine opportunity, for fear too late
  • Thou seek'st for much, but canst not compass it.
  • Within here!
  • Enter Governor, with a Guard.
  • My lord?
  • Ay, lord; thus slaves will learn.
  • Now, Governor, stand by there:—wait within.50
  • [Exit Guard.
  • This is the reason that I sent for thee;
  • Edition: current; Page: [103]
  • Thou seest thy life and Malta's happiness
  • Are at my arbitrement; and Barabas
  • At his discretion may dispose of both:
  • Now tell me, Governor, and plainly too,
  • What think'st thou shall become of it and thee?
  • This, Barabas; since things are in thy power,
  • I see no reason but of Malta's wreck,
  • Nor hope of thee but extreme cruelty;
  • Nor fear I death, nor will I flatter thee.60
  • Governor, good words; be not so furious.
  • 'Tis not thy life which can avail me aught,
  • Yet you do live, and live for me you shall:
  • And, as for Malta's ruin, think you not
  • 'Twere slender policy for Barabas
  • To dispossess himself of such a place?
  • For sith, as once you said, 'tis in this isle,
  • In Malta here, that I have got my goods,
  • And in this city still have had success,
  • And now at length am grown your governor,70
  • Yourselves shall see it shall not be forgot:
  • For, as a friend not known but in distress,
  • I'll rear up Malta, now remediless.
  • Will Barabas recover Malta's loss?
  • Will Barabas be good to Christians?
  • What wilt thou give me, Governor, to procure
  • A dissolution of the slavish bands
  • Wherein the Turk hath yoked your land and you?
  • What will you give me if I render you
  • The life of Calymath, surprise his men80
  • And in an outhouse of the city shut
  • Edition: current; Page: [104]
  • His soldiers, till I have consumed 'em all with fire?
  • What will you give him that procureth this?
  • Do but bring this to pass which thou pretend'st,1
  • Deal truly with us as thou intimatest,
  • And I will send amongst the citizens,
  • And by my letters privately procure
  • Great sums of money for thy recompense:
  • Nay more, do this, and live thou governor still.
  • Nay, do thou this, Ferneze, and be free;90
  • Governor, I enlarge thee; live with me,
  • Go walk about the city, see thy friends:
  • Tush, send not letters to 'em, go thyself,
  • And let me see what money thou canst make;
  • Here is my hand that I'll set Malta free:
  • And thus we cast it: to a solemn feast
  • I will invite young Selim Calymath,
  • Where be thou present only to perform
  • One stratagem that I'll impart to thee,
  • Wherein no danger shall betide thy life,100
  • And I will warrant Malta free for ever.
  • Here is my hand, believe me, Barabas,
  • I will be there, and do as thou desirest;
  • When is the time?
  • Governor, presently;
  • For Calymath, when he hath viewed the town,
  • Then will I, Barabas, about this coin,
  • And bring it with me to thee in the evening.
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  • Do so, but fail not; now farewell, Ferneze:
  • [Exit Governor.
  • And thus far roundly goes the business:110
  • Thus loving neither, will I live with both,
  • Making a profit of my policy;
  • And he from whom my most advantage comes
  • Shall be my friend.
  • This is the life we Jews are used to lead;
  • And reason too, for Christians do the like.
  • Well, now about effecting this device:
  • First to surprise great Selim's soldiers,
  • And then to make provision for the feast,
  • That at one instant all things may be done:120
  • My policy detests prevention:
  • To what event my secret purpose drives,
  • I know; and they shall witness with their lives.
  • [Exit.


Enter Calymath and Bassoes.

  • Thus have we viewed the city, seen the sack,
  • And caused the ruins to be new-repaired,
  • Which with our bombards'1 shot and basilisk[s]2
  • We rent in sunder at our entry:
  • And now I see the situation,
  • And how secure this conquered island stands
  • Environed with the Mediterranean sea,
  • Strong-countermined with other petty isles;
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  • And,1 toward Calabria, backed by Sicily,
  • (Where Syracusian Dionysius reigned,)10
  • Two lofty turrets that command the town;
  • I wonder how it could be conquered thus.
  • Enter a Messenger.
  • From Barabas, Malta's governor, I bring
  • A message unto mighty Calymath;
  • Hearing his sovereign was bound for sea,
  • To sail to Turkey, to great Ottoman,
  • He humbly would entreat your majesty
  • To come and see his homely citadel,
  • And banquet with him ere thou leav'st the isle.
  • To banquet with him in his citadel?20
  • I fear me, messenger, to feast my train
  • Within a town of war so lately pillaged,
  • Will be too costly and too troublesome:
  • Yet would I gladly visit Barabas,
  • Selim, for that, thus saith the Governor,
  • That he hath in [his] store a pearl so big,
  • So precious, and withal so orient,
  • As, be it valued but indifferently,
  • The price thereof will serve to entertain30
  • Selim and all his soldiers for a month;
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  • Therefore he humbly would entreat your highness
  • Not to depart till he has feasted you.
  • I cannot feast my men in Malta-walls,
  • Except he place his tables in the streets.
  • Know, Selim, that there is a monastery
  • Which standeth as an outhouse to the town:
  • There will he banquet them; but thee at home,
  • With all thy bassoes and brave followers.
  • Well, tell the Governor we grant his suit,40
  • We'll in this summer evening feast with him.
  • I shall, my lord.
  • [Exit.
  • And now, bold bassoes, let us to our tents,
  • And meditate how we may grace us best
  • To solemnise our Governor's great feast.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter1 Governor, Knights, and Del Bosco.

  • In this, my countrymen, be ruled by me,
  • Have special care that no man sally forth
  • Till you shall hear a culverin discharged
  • By him that bears the linstock,2 kindled thus;
  • Then issue out and come to rescue me,
  • For happily I shall be in distress,
  • Or you released of this servitude.
  • Rather than thus to live as Turkish thralls,
  • What will we not adventure?
Edition: current; Page: [108]
  • On then, be gone.
  • Farewell, grave Governor!
  • [Exeunt.10


Enter,1 above, Barabas, with a hammer, very busy; and Carpenters.

  • How stand the cords? How hang these hinges? fast?
  • Are all the cranes and pulleys sure?
First Carp.2
  • All fast.
  • Leave nothing loose, all levelled to my mind.
  • Why now I see that you have art indeed.
  • There, carpenters, divide that gold amongst you:
  • Go swill in bowls of sack and muscadine!
First Carp.
  • We shall, my lord, and thank you.
  • [Exeunt.
  • And, if you like them, drink your fill and die:
  • For so I live, perish may all the world.10
  • Now Selim Calymath return me word
  • That thou wilt come, and I am satisfied.
  • Now, sirrah, what, will he come?
  • Enter Messenger.
  • He will; and has commanded all his men
  • To come ashore, and march through Malta-streets,
  • That thou mayest feast them in thy citadel.
  • Then now are all things as my wish would have 'em,
  • Edition: current; Page: [109]
  • There wanteth nothing but the Governor's pelf,
  • And see, he brings it.
  • Enter Governor.
  • Now, Governor, the sum.
  • With free consent, a hundred thousand pounds.
  • Pounds say'st thou, Governor? well, since it is no more,21
  • I'll satisfy myself with that; nay, keep it still,
  • For if I keep not promise, trust not me.
  • And, Governor, now take my policy:
  • First, for his army, they are sent before,
  • Entered the monastery, and underneath
  • In several places are field-pieces pitched,
  • Bombards, whole barrels full of gunpowder,
  • That on the sudden shall dissever it,
  • And batter all the stones about their ears,30
  • Whence none can possibly escape alive:
  • Now as for Calymath and his consorts,
  • Here have I made a dainty gallery,
  • The floor whereof, this cable being cut,
  • Doth fall asunder; so that it doth sink
  • Into a deep pit past recovery.
  • Here, hold that knife, and when thou seest he comes,
  • And with his bassoes shall be blithely set,
  • A warning-piece shall be shot off from the tower,
  • To give thee knowledge when to cut the cord40
  • And fire the house; say, will not this be brave?
  • O excellent! here, hold thee, Barabas,
  • I trust thy word, take what I promised thee.
Edition: current; Page: [110]
  • No, Governor, I'll satisfy thee first,
  • Thou shalt not live in doubt of anything.
  • Stand close, for here they come [Governor retires]. Why, is not this
  • A kingly kind of trade to purchase towns
  • By treachery and sell 'em by deceit?
  • Now tell me, worldlings, underneath the sun1
  • If greater falsehood ever has been done?50
  • Enter Calymath and Bassoes.
  • Come, my companion bassoes; see, I pray,
  • How busy Barabas is there above
  • To entertain us in his gallery;
  • Let us salute him. Save thee, Barabas!
  • Welcome, great Calymath!
  • How the slave jeers at him.
  • [Aside.
  • Will't please thee, mighty Selim Calymath,
  • To ascend our homely stairs?
  • Ay, Barabas;
  • Come, bassoes, attend.2
  • Stay, Calymath!60
  • For I will show thee greater courtesy
Knight [within].
  • Sound a charge there!
  • [A charge; the cable cut. Barabas falls into a caldron. Enter Martin del Bosco and Knights.3
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  • How now, what means this?
  • Help, help me, Christians, help!
  • See, Calymath, this was devised for thee.
  • Treason! treason! bassoes, fly!
  • No, Selim, do not fly!
  • See his end first, and fly then if thou canst.
  • O help me, Selim, help me, Christians!70
  • Governor, why stand you all so pitiless?
  • Should I in pity of thy plaints or thee,
  • Accursèd Barabas, base Jew, relent?
  • No, thus I'll see thy treachery repaid,
  • You will not help me, then?
  • No, villain, no.
  • And, villains, know you cannot help me now—
  • Then, Barabas, breathe forth thy latest hate,1
  • And in the fury of thy torments strive
  • To end thy life with resolution.80
  • Know, Governor, 'twas I that slew thy son;
  • I framed the challenge that did make them meet:
  • Know, Calymath, I aimed thy overthrow,
  • And had I but escaped this stratagem,
  • I would have brought confusion on you all,
  • Damned Christians! dogs! and Turkish infidels!
  • But now begins the extremity of heat
  • To pinch me with intolerable pangs:
  • Die life, fly soul, tongue curse thy fill, and die!
  • [Dies.
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  • Tell me, you Christians, what doth this portend?90
  • This train he laid to have entrapped thy life;
  • Now, Selim, note the unhallowed deeds of Jews:
  • Thus he determined to have handled thee,
  • Was this the banquet he prepared for us?
  • Let's hence, lest further mischief be pretended.1
  • Nay, Selim, stay, for since we have thee here,
  • We will not let thee part so suddenly;
  • Besides, if we should let thee go, all's one,
  • For with thy galleys could'st thou not get hence,100
  • Without fresh men to rig and furnish them.
  • Tush, Governor, take thou no care for that,
  • My men are all aboard,
  • And do attend my coming there by this.
  • Why, heard'st thou not the trumpet sound a charge?
  • Yes, what of that?
  • Why then the house was fired,
  • Blown up, and all thy soldiers massacred.
  • O monstrous treason!
  • A Jew's courtesy:
  • For he that did by treason work our fall,
  • By treason hath delivered thee to us:110
  • Know, therefore, till thy father hath made good
  • Edition: current; Page: [113]
  • The ruins done to Malta and to us,
  • Thou canst not part: for Malta shall be freed,
  • Or Selim ne'er return to Ottoman.
  • Nay, rather, Christians, let me go to Turkey,
  • In person there to mediate1 your peace;
  • To keep me here will not advantage you.
  • Content thee, Calymath, here thou must stay,
  • And live in Malta prisoner; for come all2 the world
  • To rescue thee, so will we guard us now,120
  • As sooner shall they drink the ocean dry
  • Than conquer Malta, or endanger us.
  • So march away, and let due praise be given
  • Neither to Fate nor Fortune, but to Heaven.
  • [Exeunt.
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Edward II. was entered in the Stationers' Books 6th July 1593. In the Dyce Library at South Kensington there is a 4to. with a MS. title-page (in a hand of the late seventeenth century) dated 1593. Without doubt the date 1593 is a copyist's mistake for 1598. In the first leaf, which is in MS., there are a few textual differences, due to the copyist's carelessness; but the printed matter throughout (A. 3—K. 2) exhibits the text of ed. 1598.

In 1876 an edition of Edward II. in 8vo., dated 1594, was discovered in the library at Cassel. The title is:—The troublesome raigne and lamentable death of Edward the second, King of England: with the tragicall fall of proud Mortimer. As it was sundri times publiquely acted in the honourable citie of London, by the right honourable the Earl of Pembroke his servants. Written by Chri. Marlow Gent. Imprinted at London for William fones, dwelling neare Holborne conduit at the Signe of the Gunne, 1594.

The title of the 4to. of 1598 runs as follows:—The troublesome The troublesome raigne and lamentable death of Edward the second, King of England, with the tragicall fall of proud Mortimer. And also the life and death of Pers Gaueston, the great Earle of Cornewall, and mightly favorite of king Edward the second, as it was publiquely acted by the right honorable the Earle of Pembrooke his seruauntes. Written by Chri. Marlow Gent. Imprinted at London by Richard Bradocke, for William fones, dwelling neere Holbourne conduit, at the signe of the Gunne, 1598.

Another edition (in 4to,) appeared in 1612, with the following title:—The troublesome raigne and lamentable death of Edward the second, King of England: with the tragicall fall of proud Mortimer. And also the life and death of Pers Gaueston, the great Earle of Cornewall, and mighty jauorite of King Edward the second, as it Edition: current; Page: [117] was publiquely acted by the right honorable the Earle of Pembrooke his seruants. Written by Christopher Marlow Gent. Printed at London for Roger Barnes, and are to be sould at his shop in Chauncere Lane ouer against the Rolles, 1612.

The last of the old editions is dated 1622:— The troublesome raigne and lamentable death of Edward the second, King of England: with the Tragicall fall of proud Mortimer. And also the life and death of Pers Gauestone, the great Earle of Cornewall, and mighty Fauorite of King Edward the second. As it was publikely Acted by the late Queenes Maiesties Seruants at the Red Bull in S. fohns streete. Written by Christopher Marlow Gent. London, Printed for Henry Bell, and are to be sold at his Shop, at the Lame-hospitall Gate, neere Smuthfield, 1622.

The text of the 1598 4to., which is fairly free from corruptions, differs but slightly from the texts of the two later 4tos. I have not had an opportunity of inspecting the 8vo. of 1594; but I suspect that it agrees very closely with the later copies.

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  • Edward II.

  • Prince Edward, his son, afterwards Edward III.

  • Gaveston.

  • Elder Spencer.

  • Young Spencer.

  • Elder Mortimer.

  • Young Mortimer.

  • Berkeley.

  • Lancaster.

  • Leicester.

  • Edmund, Earl of Kent.

  • Arundel.

  • Warwick.

  • Pembroke.

  • Archbishop of Canterbury.

  • Bishop of Winchester.

  • Bishop of Coventry.

  • Beaumont.

  • Trussel.

  • Sir John Hainault.

  • Levune.

  • Baldock.

  • Matrevis.

  • Gurney.

  • Rice ap Howell.

  • Lightborn.

  • Abbot.

  • Lords, Messengers, Monks, James, &c., &c.,

  • Queen Isabella.

  • Niece to Edward II.

  • Ladies.

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Enter1 Gaveston, reading a letter from the King.

  • My father is deceased! Come, Gaveston, And share the kingdom with thy dearest friend.
  • Ah! words that make me surfeit with delight!
  • What greater bliss can hap to Gaveston
  • Than live and be the favourite of a king!
  • Sweet prince, I come; these, these thy amorous lines
  • Might have enforced me to have swum from France,
  • And, like Leander, gasped upon the sand,
  • So thou would'st smile, and take me in thine arms.
  • The sight of London to my exiled eyes10
  • Is as Elysium to a new-come soul;
  • Not that I love the city, or the men,
  • But that it harbours him I hold so dear—
  • The king, upon whose bosom let me die,2
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  • And with the world be still at enmity.
  • What need the arctic people love starlight,
  • To whom the sun shines both by day and night?
  • Farewell base stooping to the lordly peers!
  • My knee shall bow to none but to the king.
  • As for the multitude, that are but sparks,20
  • Raked up in embers of their poverty;—
  • Tanti;1 I'll fawn2 first on the wind
  • That glanceth at my lips, and flieth away.
  • But how now, what are these?
  • Enter three poor Men.
  • Such as desire your worship's service.
  • What canst thou do?
1 Man.
  • I can ride.
  • But I have no horse. What art thou?
2 Man.
  • A traveller.
  • Let me see—thou would'st do well
  • To wait at my trencher and tell me lies at dinner-time;30
  • And as I like your discoursing, I'll have you.
  • And what art thou?
3 Man.
  • A soldier, that hath served against the Scot.
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  • Why, there are hospitals for such as you;
  • I have no war, and therefore, sir, begone.
3 Man.
  • Farewell, and perish by a soldier's hand,
  • That would'st reward them with an hospital.
  • Ay, ay, these words of his move me as much
  • As if a goose would play the porcupine,
  • And dart her plumes,1 thinking to pierce my breast.40
  • But yet it is no pain to speak men fair;
  • I'll flatter these, and make them live in hope.
  • [Aside.
  • You know that I came lately out of France,
  • And yet I have not viewed my lord the king;
  • If I speed well, I'll entertain you all.
  • We thank your worship.
  • I have some business. Leave me to myself.
  • We will wait here about the court.
  • [Exeunt.
  • Do; these are not men for me;
  • I must have wanton poets, pleasant wits,50
  • Musicians, that with touching of a string
  • May draw the pliant king which way I please.
  • Music and poetry is his delight;
  • Therefore I'll have Italian masks by night,
  • Sweet speeches, comedies, and pleasing shows;
  • And in the day, when he shall walk abroad,
  • Like silvian2 nymphs my pages shall be clad;
  • My men, like satyrs grazing on the lawns,
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  • Shall with their goat-feet dance the antic hay.1
  • Sometime a lovely boy in Dian's shape,60
  • With hair that gilds the water as it glides,
  • Crownets of pearl about his naked arms,
  • And in his sportful hands an olive-tree,
  • To hide those parts which men delight to see,
  • Shall bathe him in a spring; and there hard by,
  • One like Actæon peeping though the grove,
  • Shall by the angry goddess be transformed,
  • And running in the likeness of an hart
  • By yelping hounds pulled down, and2 seem to die;—
  • Such things as these best please his majesty.70
  • Here comes my lord3 the king, and [here] the nobles
  • From the parliament. I'll stand aside.
  • Enter the King, Lancaster, Elder Mortimer, Young Mortimer, Edmund, Earl of Kent, Guy, Earl of Warwick, &c
  • Lancaster!
  • My lord.
  • That Earl of Lancaster do I abhor.
  • [Aside.
  • Will you not grant me this? In spite of them
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  • I'll have my will; and these two Mortimers,
E. Mor.
  • If you love us, my lord, hate Gaveston.
  • That villain Mortimer, I'll be his death!
  • [Aside.
Y. Mor.
  • Mine uncle here, this earl, and I myself,81
  • Were sworn1 to your father at his death,
  • That he should ne'er return into the realm:
  • And know, my lord, ere I will break my oath,
  • This sword of mine, that should offend your foes,
  • Shall sleep within the scabbard at thy need,
  • And underneath thy banners march who will,
  • For Mortimer will hang his armour up.
  • Mort dieu!
  • [Aside.
  • Well, Mortimer, I'll make thee rue these words.
  • Beseems it thee to contradict thy king?91
  • Frown'st thou thereat, aspiring Lancaster?2
  • The sword shall plane the furrows of thy brows,
  • And hew these knees that now are grown so stiff.
  • I will have Gaveston; and you shall know
  • Well done, Ned!
  • [Aside.
  • My lord, why do you thus incense your peers,
  • That naturally would love and honour you
  • But for that base and obscure Gaveston?100
  • Four earldoms have I, besides Lancaster—
  • Derby, Salisbury, Lincoln, Leicester,
  • These will I sell, to give my soldiers pay,
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  • Ere Gaveston shall stay within the realm;
  • Barons and earls, your pride hath made me mute;
  • But now I'll speak, and to the proof, I hope.
  • I do remember, in my father's days,
  • Lord Percy of the north, being highly moved,
  • Braved Moubery1 in presence of the king;110
  • For which, had not his highness loved him well,
  • He should have lost his head; but with his look
  • The undaunted spirit of Percy was appeased,
  • And Moubery and he were reconciled:
  • Yet dare you brave the king unto his face.—
  • Brother, revenge it, and let these their heads
  • O, our heads!
  • Ay, yours; and therefore I would wish you grant—
  • Bridle thy anger, gentle Mortimer.120
Y. Mor.
  • I cannot, nor I will not; I must speak.
  • Cousin, our hands I hope shall fence our heads,
  • And strike off his that makes you threaten us.
  • Come, uncle, let us leave the brain-sick king,
  • And henceforth parley with our naked swords.
E. Mor.
  • Wiltshire hath men enough to save our heads.
  • All Warwickshire will love2 him for my sake.
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  • And northward Gaveston1 hath many friends.
  • Adieu, my lord; and either change your mind,
  • Or look to see the throne, where you should sit,130
  • To float in blood; and at thy wanton head,
  • The glozing head of thy base minion thrown.
  • [Exeunt Nobles.
  • I cannot brook these haughty menaces;
  • Am I a king, and must be overruled?
  • Brother, display my ensigns in the field;
  • I'll bandy2 with the barons and the earls,
  • And either die or live with Gaveston.
  • I can no longer keep me from my lord.
  • [Comes forward.
  • What, Gaveston! welcome.—Kiss not my hand—
  • Embrace me, Gaveston, as I do thee.140
  • Why should'st thou kneel? know'st thou not who I am?
  • Thy friend, thyself, another Gaveston!
  • Not Hylas was more mourned of3 Hercules,
  • Than thou hast been of me since thy exile.
  • And since I went from hence, no soul in hell
  • Hath felt more torment than poor Gaveston.
  • I know it.—Brother, welcome home my friend.
  • Now let the treacherous Mortimers conspire,
  • And that high-minded Earl of Lancaster:
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  • I have my wish, in that I joy thy sight;150
  • And sooner shall the sea o'erwhelm my land,
  • Than bear the ship that shall transport thee hence.
  • I here create thee Lord High Chamberlain,
  • Chief Secretary to the state and me,
  • My lord, these titles far exceed my worth.
  • Brother, the least of these may well suffice For one of greater birth than Gaveston.
  • Cease, brother: for I cannot brook these words.
  • Thy worth, sweet friend, is far above my gifts,160
  • Therefore, to equal it, receive my heart;
  • If for these dignities thou be envied,
  • I'll give thee more; for, but to honour thee,
  • Is Edward pleased with kingly regiment.1
  • Fear'st thou thy person? thou shalt have a guard.
  • Wantest thou gold? go to my treasury.
  • Wouldst thou be loved and feared? receive my seal;
  • Save or condemn, and in our name command
  • Whatso thy mind affects, or fancy likes.
  • It shall suffice me to enjoy your love,170
  • Which whiles I have, I think myself as great
  • As Cæsar riding in the Roman street,
  • With captive kings at his triumphant car.
  • Enter the Bishop of Coventry.
  • Whither goes my lord of Coventry so fast?
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  • To celebrate your father's exequies.
  • But is that wicked Gaveston returned?
  • Ay, priest, and lives to be revenged on thee,
  • That wert the only cause of his exile.
  • “Tis true; and but for reverence of these robes,
  • Thou should'st not plod one foot beyond this place.180
  • I did no more than I was bound to do;
  • And, Gaveston, unless thou be reclaimed,
  • As then I did incense the parliament,
  • So will I now, and thou shalt back to France.
  • Saving your reverence, you must pardon me.
  • Throw off his golden mitre, rend his stole,
  • And in the channel1 christen him anew.
  • Ah, brother, lay not violent hands on him,
  • For he'll complain unto the see of Rome.
  • Let him complain unto the see of hell,190
  • I'll be revenged on him for my exile.
  • No, spare his life, but seize upon his goods:
  • Be thou lord bishop and receive his rents,
  • And make him serve thee as thy chaplain:
  • I give him thee—here, use him as thou wilt.
  • He shall to prison, and there die in bolts.
  • Ay, to the Tower, the Fleet, or where thou wilt.
  • For this offence, be thou accurst of God!
  • Who's there? Convey this priest to the Tower.
  • True, true.2200
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  • But in the meantime, Gaveston, away,
  • And take possession of his house and goods.
  • Come, follow me, and thou shalt have my guard
  • To see it done, and bring thee safe again.
  • What should a priest do with so fair a house?
  • A prison may best1 beseem his holiness.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter2 both the Mortimers, Warwick, and Lancaster.

  • 'Tis true, the bishop is in the Tower,
  • And goods and body given to Gaveston.
  • What! will they tyrannise upon the church?
  • Ah, wicked king! accursed Gaveston!
  • This ground, which is corrupted with their steps,
  • Shall be their timeless3 sepulchre or mine.
Y. Mor.
  • Well, let that peevish Frenchman guard him sure;
  • Unless his breast be sword-proof he shall die.
E. Mor.
  • How now, why droops the Earl of Lancaster?
Y. Mor.
  • Wherefore is Guy of Warwick discontent?10
  • That villain Gaveston is made an earl.
E. Mor.
  • An earl!
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  • Ay, and besides Lord Chamberlain of the realm,
  • And Secretary too, and Lord of Man.
E. Mor.
  • We may not, nor we will not suffer this.
Y. Mor.
  • Why post we not from hence to levy men?
  • “My Lord of Cornwall,” now at every word!
  • And happy is the man whom he vouchsafes,
  • For vailing of his bonnet, one good look.
  • Thus, arm in arm, the king and he doth march:20
  • Nay more, the guard upon his lordship waits;
  • And all the court begins to flatter him.
  • Thus leaning on the shoulder of the king,
  • He nods and scorns, and smiles at those that pass.
E. Mor.
  • Doth no man take exceptions at the slave?
  • All stomach1 him, but none dare speak a word.
Y. Mor.
  • Ah, that bewrays their baseness, Lancaster.
  • Were all the earls and barons of my mind,
  • We'd2 hale him from the bosom of the king,
  • And at the court-gate hang the peasant up;30
  • Who, swoln with venom of ambitious pride,
  • Will be the ruin of the realm and us.
  • Enter the Archbishop of Canterbury and a Messenger.
  • Here comes my Lord of Canterbury's grace.
  • His countenance bewrays he is displeased.
  • First were his sacred garments rent and torn,
  • Then laid they violent hands upon him; next
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  • Himself imprisoned, and his goods asseized:
  • This certify the pope;—away, take horse.
  • [Exit Messenger.
  • My lord, will you take arms against the king?
  • What need I? God himself is up in arms,40
  • When violence is offered to the church.
Y. Mor.
  • Then will you join with us, that be his peers.
  • To banish or behead that Gaveston?
  • What else, my lords? for it concerns me near;—
  • The bishoprick of Coventry is his.
  • Enter Queen Isabella.
Y. Mor.
  • Madam, whither walks your majesty so fast?
  • Unto the forest,1 gentle Mortimer,
  • To live in grief and baleful discontent;
  • For now, my lord, the king regards me not,
  • But doats upon the love of Gaveston,50
  • He claps his cheek, and hangs about his neck,
  • Smiles in his face, and whispers in his ears;
  • And when I come he frowns, as who should say,
  • “Go whither thou wilt, seeing I have Gaveston.”
E. Mor.
  • Is it not strange that he is thus bewitched?
Y. Mor.
  • Madam, return unto the court again:
  • That sly inveigling Frenchman we'll exile,
  • Or lose our lives; and yet, ere that day come,
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  • The king shall lose his crown; for we have power,
  • And courage too, to be revenged at full.60
  • But yet lift not your swords against the king.
  • No; but we will lift Gaveston from hence.
  • And war must be the means, or he'll stay still.
  • Then let him stay; for rather than my lord
  • Shall be oppressed with civil mutinies,
  • I will endure a melancholy life,
  • My lords, to ease all this, but hear me speak:—
  • We and the rest, that are his counsellors,
  • Will meet, and with a general consent70
  • Confirm his banishment with our hands and seals.
  • What we confirm the king will frustrate.
Y. Mor.
  • Then may we lawfully revolt from him.
  • But say, my lord, where shall this meeting be?
  • At the New Temple.
Y. Mor.
  • Content.
  • [Archbish.] And, in the meantime, I'll entreat you all
  • To cross to Lambeth, and there stay with me.
  • Come then, let's away.
Y. Mor.
  • Madam, farewell!80
  • Farewell, sweet Mortimer; and, for my sake,
  • Forbear to levy arms against the king.
Y. Mor.
  • Ay, if words will serve; if not, I must.
  • [Exeunt.
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Enter1 Gaveston and the Earl of Kent.

  • Edmund, the mighty prince of Lancaster,
  • That hath more earldoms than an ass can bear,
  • And both the Mortimers, two goodly men,
  • With Guy of Warwick, that redoubted knight,
  • Are gone toward Lambeth—there let them remain.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter2 Nobles and the Archbishop of Canterbury.

  • Here is the form of Gaveston's exile:
  • May it please your lordship to subscribe your name.
  • Give me the paper.
  • [He subscribes, as the others do after him.
  • Quick, quick, my lord; I long to write my name.
  • But I long more to see him banished hence.
Y. Mor.
  • The name of Mortimer shall fright the king,
  • Unless he be declined from that base peasant.
  • Enter the King, Gaveston, and Kent.
  • What, are you moved that Gaveston sits here?
  • It is our pleasure, and we will have it so.
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  • Your grace doth well to place him by your side,10
  • For nowhere else the new earl is so safe.
E. Mor.
  • What man of noble birth can brook this sight?
  • Quam male conveniunt!1
  • See what a scornful look the peasant casts!
  • Can kingly lions fawn on creeping ants?
  • War Ignoble vassal, that like Phaeton
  • Aspir'st unto the guidance of the sun.
Y. Mor.
  • Their downfall is at hand, their forces down
  • We will not thus be faced and over-peered.
  • Lay hands on2 that traitor Mortimer!20
E. Mor.
  • Lay hands on that traitor Gaveston!
  • Is this the duty that you owe your king?
  • We know our duties—let him know his peers.
  • Whither will you bear him? Stay, or ye shall die.
E. Mor.
  • We are no traitors; therefore threaten not.
  • No, threaten not, my lord, but pay them home!
  • Were I a king——
Y. Mor.
  • Thou villain, wherefore talk'st thou of a king,
  • That hardly art a gentleman by birth?
  • Were he a peasant, being my minion,30
  • I'll make the proudest of you stoop to him.
  • My lord, you may not thus disparage us.
  • Away, I say, with hateful Gaveston!
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E. Mor.
  • And with the Earl of Kent that favours him.
  • [Attendants remove Kent and Gaveston.
  • Nay, then, lay violent hands upon your king,
  • Here, Mortimer, sit thou in Edward's throne:
  • Warwick and Lancaster, wear you my crown:
  • Was ever king thus over-ruled as I?
  • Learn then to rule us better, and the realm.
Y. Mor.
  • What we have done, our heart-blood shall maintain.40
  • Think you that we can brook this upstart pride?
  • Anger and wrathful fury stops my speech.
  • Why are you moved? be patient, my lord,
  • And see what we your counsellors have done.
Y. Mor.
  • My lords, now let us all be resolute,
  • And either have our wills or lose our lives.
  • Meet you for this? proud overbearing peers!
  • Ere my sweet Gaveston shall part from me,
  • This isle shall fleet1 upon the ocean,
  • And wander to the unfrequented Inde.50
  • You know that I am legate to the pope;
  • On your allegiance to the see of Rome,
Y. Mor.
  • Curse him, if he refuse; and then may we
  • Depose him and elect another king.
  • Ay, there it goes—but yet I will not yield:
  • Curse me, depose me, do the worst you can.
  • Then linger not, my lord, but do it straight.
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  • Remember how the bishop was abused!
  • Either banish him that was the cause thereof,60
  • Or I will presently discharge these lords1
  • Of duty and allegiance due to thee.
  • It boots me not to threat—I must speak fair:
  • The legate of the pope will be obeyed.
  • [Aside.
  • My lord, you shall be Chancellor of the realm;
  • Thou, Lancaster, High Admiral of the fleet;
  • Young Mortimer and his uncle shall be earls;
  • And you, Lord Warwick, President of the North;
  • And thou of Wales. If this content you not,
  • Make several kingdoms of this monarchy,70
  • And share it equally amongst you all,
  • So I may have some nook or corner left,
  • To frolic with my dearest Gaveston.
  • Nothing shall alter us—we are resolved.
  • Come, come, subscribe.
Y. Mor.
  • Why should you love him whom the world hates so?
  • Because he loves me more than all the world.
  • Ah, none but rude and savage-minded men
  • Would seek the ruin of my Gaveston;
  • You that be2 noble-born should pity him.80
  • You that are princely-born should shake him off:
  • For shame subscribe, and let the lown3 depart.
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E. Mor.
  • Urge him, my lord.
  • Are you content to banish him the realm?
  • I see I must, and therefore am content:
  • Instead of ink I'll write it with my tears.
  • [Subscribes.
Y. Mor.
  • The king is love-sick for his minion.
  • 'Tis done—and now, accursèd hand, fall off!
  • Give it me—I'll have it published in the streets.
Y. Mor.
  • I'll see him presently despatched away.90
  • Now is my heart at ease.
  • And so is mine.
  • This will be good news to the common sort.
E. Mor.
  • Be it or no, he shall not linger here.
  • [Exeunt Nobles.
  • How fast they run to banish him I love!
  • They would not stir, were it to do me good.
  • Why should a king be subject to a priest?
  • Proud Rome! that hatchest such imperial grooms,
  • For1 these thy superstitious taper-lights,
  • Wherewith thy antichristian churches blaze,
  • I'll fire thy crazèd buildings, and enforce100
  • The papal towers to kiss the lowly ground!2
  • With slaughtered priests make3 Tiber's channel swell,
  • And banks raised higher with their sepulchres!
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  • As for the peers, that back the clergy thus,
  • If I be king, not one of them shall live.
  • Enter Gaveston.
  • My lord, I hear it whispered everywhere,
  • That I am banished, and must fly the land.
  • 'Tis true, sweet Gaveston—O! were it false!
  • The legate of the Pope will have it so,
  • And thou must hence, or I shall be deposed.110
  • But I will reign to be revenged of them;
  • And therefore, sweet friend, take it patiently.
  • Live where thou wilt, I'll send thee gold enough;
  • And long thou shalt not stay, or if thou dost,
  • Is all my hope turned to this hell of grief?
  • Rend not my heart with thy too-piercing words:
  • Thou from this land, I from myself am banished.
  • To go from hence grieves not poor Gaveston;
  • But to forsake you, in whose gracious looks120
  • The blessedness of Gaveston remains:
  • For nowhere else seeks he felicity.
  • And only this torments my wretched soul,
  • That, whether I will or no, thou must depart.
  • Be governor of Ireland in my stead,
  • And there abide till fortune call thee home.
  • Here take my picture, and let me wear thine;
  • [They exchange pictures.
  • O, might I keep thee here as I do this,
  • Happy were I! but now most miserable!
  • 'Tis something to be pitied of a king.130
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  • Thou shalt not hence—I'll hide thee, Gaveston.
  • I shall be found, and then 'twill grieve me more.
  • Kind words, and mutual talk makes our grief greater:
  • Therefore, with dumb embracement, let us part—
  • Stay, Gaveston, I cannot leave thee thus.
  • For every look, my lord1 drops down a tear:
  • Seeing I must go, do not renew my sorrow.
  • The time is little that thou hast to stay,
  • And, therefore, give me leave to look my fill:
  • But come, sweet friend, I'll bear thee on thy way.140
  • The peers will frown.
  • I pass2 not for their anger—Come, let's go;
  • O that we might as well return as go.
  • Enter Kent3 and Queen Isabel.
  • Whither goes my lord?
  • Fawn not on me, French strumpet! get thee gone.
  • On whom but on my husband should I fawn?
  • On Mortimer! with whom, ungentle queen—
  • I say no more—judge you the rest, my lord.
  • In saying this, thou wrong'st me, Gaveston;
  • Is't not enough that thou corrupt'st my lord,150
  • And art a bawd to his affections,
  • But thou must call mine honour thus in question?
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  • I mean not so; your grace must pardon me.
  • Thou art too familiar with that Mortimer,
  • And by thy means is Gaveston exiled;
  • But I would wish thee reconcile the lords,
  • Or thou shalt ne'er be reconciled to me.
  • Your highness knows it lies not in my power.
  • Away then! touch me not—Come, Gaveston.
  • Villain! 'tis thou that robb'st me of my lord.160
  • Madam, 'tis you that rob me of my lord.
  • Speak not unto her; let her droop and pine.
  • Wherein, my lord, have I deserved these words?
  • Witness the tears that Isabella sheds,
  • Witness this heart, that sighing for thee, breaks,
  • How dear my lord is to poor Isabel.
  • And witness heaven how dear thou art to me:
  • There weep: for till my Gaveston be repealed,
  • Assure thyself thou com'st not in my sight.
  • [Exeunt Edward and Gaveston.
  • O miserable and distressèd queen!170
  • Would, when I left sweet France and was embarked,
  • That charming Circe1 walking on the waves,
  • Had changed my shape, or at2 the marriage-day
  • The cup of Hymen had been full of poison,
  • Or with those arms that twined about my neck
  • I had been stifled, and not lived to see
  • The king my lord thus to abandon me!
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  • Like frantic Juno will I fill the earth
  • With ghastly murmur of my sighs and cries;
  • For never doated Jove on Ganymede180
  • So much as he on cursèd Gaveston:
  • But that will more exasperate his wrath:
  • I must entreat him, I must speak him fair,
  • And be a means to call home Gaveston:
  • And yet he'll ever doat on Gaveston:
  • And so am I for ever miserable.
  • Enter the Nobles.
  • Look where the sister of the king of France
  • Sits wringing of her hands, and beats her breast!
  • The king, I fear, hath ill-entreated her.
  • Hard is the heart that injuries1 such a saint.190
Y. Mor.
  • I know 'tis 'long of Gaveston she weeps.
E. Mor.
  • Why, he is gone.
Y. Mor.
  • Madam, how fares your grace?
  • Ah, Mortimer! now breaks the king's hate forth,
  • And he confesseth that he loves me not.
Y. Mor.
  • Cry quittance, madam, then; and love not him.
  • No, rather will I die a thousand deaths:
  • And yet I love in vain—he'll ne'er love me.
  • Fear ye not, madam; now his minion's gone,
  • His wanton humour will be quickly left.
  • O never, Lancaster! I am enjoined200
  • To sue upon you all for his repeal;
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  • This wills my lord, and this must I perform,
  • For his repeal, madam! he comes not back,
  • Unless the sea cast up his shipwrecked body.
  • And to behold so sweet a sight as that,
  • There's none here but would run his horse to death.
Y. Mor.
  • But, madam, would you have us call him home?
  • Ay, Mortimer, for till he be restored,
  • The angry king hath banished me the court;210
  • And, therefore, as thou lov'st and tender'st me,
  • Be thou my advocate unto these peers.
Y. Mor.
  • What! would you have me plead for Gaveston?
E. Mor.
  • Plead for him that will, I am resolved.
  • And so am I, my lord: dissuade the queen.
  • O Lancaster! let him dissuade the king,
  • For 'tis against my will he should return.
  • Then speak not for him, let the peasant go.
  • 'Tis for myself I speak, and not for him.
  • No speaking will prevail,1 and therefore cease.220
Y. Mor.
  • Fair queen, forbear to angle for the fish
  • Which, being caught, strikes him that takes it dead;
  • I mean that vile torpedo, Gaveston,
  • That now, I hope, floats on the Irish seas.
  • Sweet Mortimer, sit down by me awhile,
  • And I will tell thee reasons of such weight
  • As thou wilt soon subscribe to his repeal.
Y. Mor.
  • It is impossible; but speak your mind.
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  • Then thus, but none shall hear it but ourselves.
  • [Talks to Y. Mor. apart.
  • My lords, albeit the queen win Mortimer,230
  • Will you be resolute, and hold with me?
E. Mor.
  • Not I, against my nephew.
  • Fear not, the queen's words cannot alter him.
  • No? do but mark how earnestly she pleads!
  • And see how coldly his looks make denial!
  • She smiles; now for my life his mind is changed'
  • I'll rather lose his friendship, I, than grant.
Y. Mor.
  • Well, of necessity it must be so.
  • My lords, that I abhor base Gaveston,
  • I hope your honours make no question,240
  • And therefore, though I plead for his repeal,
  • 'Tis not for his sake, but for our avail;
  • Nay for the realm's behoof, and for the king's.
  • Fie, Mortimer, dishonour not thyself!
  • Can this be true, 'twas good to banish him?
  • And is this true, to call him home again?
  • Such reasons make white black, and dark night day.
Y. Mor.
  • My lord of Lancaster, mark the respect.1
  • In no respect can contraries be true.
  • Yet, good my lord, hear what he can allege.250
  • All that he speaks is nothing; we are resolved.
Y. Mor.
  • Do you not wish that Gaveston were dead?
  • I would he were.
Y. Mor.
  • Why then, my lord, give me but leave to speak.
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E. Mor.
  • But, nephew, do not play the sophister.
Y. Mor.
  • This which I urge is of a burning zeal
  • To mend the king, and do our country good.
  • Know you not Gaveston hath store of gold,
  • Which may in Ireland purchase him such friends
  • As he will front the mightiest of us all?260
  • And whereas he shall live and be beloved,
  • 'Tis hard for us to work his overthrow.
  • Mark you but that, my lord of Lancaster.
Y. Mor.
  • But were he here, detested as he is,
  • How easily might some base slave be suborned
  • To greet his lordship with a poniard,
  • And none so much as blame the murderer,
  • But rather praise him for that brave attempt,
  • And in the chronicle enrol his name
  • For purging of the realm of such a plague!270
  • He saith true.
  • Ay, but how chance this was not done before?
Y. Mor.
  • Because, my lords, it was not thought upon.
  • Nay, more, when he shall know it lies in us
  • To banish him, and then to call him home,
  • 'Twill make him vail1 the top-flag of his pride,
  • And fear to offend the meanest nobleman.
E. Mor.
  • But how if he do not, nephew?
Y. Mor.
  • Then may we with some colour rise in arms;
  • For howsoever we have borne it out,280
  • 'Tis treason to be up against the king;
  • So we shall have the people of our side,
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  • Which for his father's sake lean to the king,
  • But cannot brook a night-grown mushroom,
  • Such a one as my lord of Cornwall is,
  • Should bear us down of the nobility.
  • And when the commons and the nobles join,
  • 'Tis not the king can buckler Gaveston;
  • We'll pull him from the strongest hold he hath.
  • My lords, if to perform this I be slack,290
  • Think me as base a groom as Gaveston.
  • On that condition, Lancaster will grant.
  • And so will Pembroke and I.
E. Mor.
  • And I.
Y. Mor.
  • In this I count me highly gratified,
  • And Mortimer will rest at your command.
  • And when this favour Isabel forgets,
  • Then let her live abandoned and forlorn.
  • But see, in happy time, my lord the king,
  • Having brought the Earl of Cornwall on his way,300
  • Is new returned; this news will glad him much;
  • Yet not so much as me; I love him more
  • Than he can Gaveston; would he love me
  • But half so much, then were I treble-blessed!
  • Enter King Edward, mourning.
  • He's gone, and for his absence thus I mourn.
  • Did never sorrow go so near my heart
  • As doth the want of my sweet Gaveston;
  • And could my crown's revenue bring him back,
  • I would freely give it to his enemies,
  • And think I gained, having bought so dear a friend.310
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  • Hark! how he harps upon his minion.
  • My heart is as an anvil unto sorrow,
  • Which beats upon it like the Cyclops' hammers,
  • And with the noise turns up my giddy brain,
  • And makes me frantic for my Gaveston.
  • Ah! had some bloodless fury rose from hell,
  • And with my kingly sceptre struck me dead,
  • When I was forced to leave my Gaveston!
  • Diablo! what passions call you these?
  • My gracious lord, I come to bring you news.320
  • That you have parled with your Mortimer?
  • That Gaveston, my lord, shall be repealed.
  • Repealed! the news is too sweet to be true!
  • But will you love me, if you find it so?
  • If it be so, what will not Edward do?
  • For Gaveston, but not for Isabel.
  • For thee, fair queen, if thou lov'st Gaveston;
  • I'll hang a golden tongue about thy neck,
  • Seeing thou hast pleaded with so good success.
  • No other jewels hang about my neck330
  • Than these, my lord; nor let me have more wealth
  • Than I may fetch from this rich treasury—
  • O how a kiss revives poor Isabel!
  • Once more receive my hand; and let this be
  • A second marriage 'twixt thyself and me.
  • And may it prove more happy than the first!
  • My gentle lord, bespeak these nobles fair,
  • That wait attendance for a gracious look,
  • And on their knees salute your majesty.
  • Courageous Lancaster, embrace thy king;340
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  • And, as gross vapours perish by the sun,
  • Even so let hatred with thy sovereign's1 smile.
  • Live thou with me as my companion.
  • This salutation overjoys my heart.
  • Warwick shall be my chiefest counsellor:
  • These silver hairs will more adorn my court
  • Than gaudy silks, or rich embroidery.
  • Slay me, my lord, when I offend your grace.
  • In solemn triumphs, and in public shows,350
  • Pembroke shall bear the sword before the king.
  • And with this sword Pembroke will fight for you.
  • But wherefore walks young Mortimer aside?
  • Be thou commander of our royal fleet;
  • Or, if that lofty office like thee not,
  • I make thee here Lord Marshal of the realm.
Y. Mor.
  • My lord, I'll marshal so your enemies,
  • As England shall be quiet, and you safe.
  • And as for you, Lord Mortimer of Chirke,
  • Whose great achievements in our foreign war360
  • Deserves no common place, nor mean reward;
  • Be you the general of the levied troops,
  • That now are ready to assail the Scots.
E. Mor.
  • In this your grace hath highly honoured me,
  • For with my nature war doth best agree.
  • Now is the king of England rich and strong,
  • Having the love of his renownèd peers.
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  • Ay, Isabel, ne'er was my heart so light.
  • Clerk of the crown, direct our warrant forth
  • For Gaveston to Ireland:
  • [Enter Beaumont with warrant.]
  • Beaumont, fly370
  • As fast as Iris or Jove's Mercury.
  • It shall be done, my gracious lord.
  • Lord Mortimer, we leave you to your charge.
  • Now let us in, and feast it royally.
  • Against our friend the Earl of Cornwall comes,
  • We'll have a general tilt and tournament;
  • And then his marriage shall be solemnised.
  • For wot you not that I have made him sure1
  • Unto our cousin, the Earl of Gloucester's heir?
  • Such news we hear, my lord.380
  • That day, if not for him, yet for my sake,
  • Who in the triumph will be challenger,
  • Spare for no cost; we will requite your love.
  • In this, or aught your highness shall command us.
  • Thanks, gentle Warwick: come, let's in and revel.
  • [Exeunt. Manent the Mortimers.
E. Mor.
  • Nephew, I must to Scotland; thou stayest here.
  • Leave now t'oppose thyself against the king.
  • Thou seest by nature he is mild and calm,
  • And, seeing his mind so doats on Gaveston,
  • Let him without controulment have his will.390
  • The mightiest kings have had their minions:
  • Edition: current; Page: [148]
  • Great Alexander loved Hephestion;
  • The conquering Hercules1 for his Hylas wept;
  • And for Patroclus stern Achilles drooped.
  • And not kings only, but the wisest men:
  • The Roman Tully loved Octavius;
  • Grave Socrates wild Alcibiades.
  • Then let his grace, whose youth is flexible,
  • And promiseth as much as we can wish,
  • Freely enjoy that vain, light-headed earl;400
  • For riper years will wean him from such toys.
Y. Mor.
  • Uncle, his wanton humour grieves not me;
  • But this I scorn, that one so basely born
  • Should by his sovereign's favour grow so pert,
  • And riot it with the treasure of the realm.
  • While soldiers mutiny for want of pay,
  • He wears a lord's revenue on his back,2
  • And Midas-like, he jets it in the court,
  • With base outlandish cullions3 at his heels,
  • Whose proud fantastic liveries make such show,410
  • As if that Proteus, god of shapes, appeared.
  • I have not seen a dapper Jack so brisk;
  • He wears a short Italian hooded cloak,
  • Larded with pearl, and, in his Tuscan cap,
  • A jewel of more value than the crown.
  • While other4 walk below, the king and he
  • Edition: current; Page: [149]
  • From out a window laugh at such as we,
  • And flout our train, and jest at our attire.
  • Uncle, 'tis this makes me impatient.419
E. Mor.
  • But, nephew, now you see the king is changed.
Y. Mor.
  • Then so am I, and live to do him service:
  • But whiles I have a sword, a hand, a heart,
  • I will not yield to any such upstart.
  • You know my mind; come, uncle, let's away.
  • [Exeunt.
Edition: current; Page: [150]



Enter1 Young Spencer and Baldock.

  • Spencer,
  • Seeing that our lord the Earl of Gloucester's dead,
  • Which of the nobles dost thou mean to serve?
Y. Spen.
  • Not Mortimer, nor any of his side;
  • Because the king and he are enemies.
  • Baldock, learn this of me, a factious lord
  • Shall hardly do himself good, much less us;
  • But he that hath the favour of a king,
  • May with one word advance us while we live:
  • The liberal Earl of Cornwall is the man10
  • On whose good fortune Spencer's hope depends.
  • What, mean you then to be his follower?
Y. Spen.
  • No, his companion; for he loves me well,
  • And would have once preferred me to the king.
  • But he is banished; there's small hope of him.
Y. Spen.
  • Ay, for a while; but, Baldock, mark the end.
  • A friend of mine told me in secrecy
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  • That he's repealed, and sent for back again;
  • And even now a post came from the court
  • With letters to our lady from the king;20
  • And as she read she smiled, which makes me think
  • It is about her lover Gaveston.
  • 'Tis like enough; for since he was exiled
  • She neither walks abroad, nor comes in sight.
  • But I had thought the match had been broke off,
  • And that his banishment had changed her mind.
Y. Spen.
  • Our lady's first love is not wavering;
  • My life for thine she will have Gaveston.
  • Then hope I by her means to be preferred,
  • Having read unto her since she was a child.30
Y. Spen.
  • Then, Baldock, you must cast the scholar off,
  • And learn to court it like a gentleman.
  • 'Tis not a black coat and a little band,
  • A velvet-caped coat, faced before with serge,
  • And smelling to a nosegay all the day,
  • Or holding of a napkin in your hand,
  • Or saying a long grace at a table's end,
  • Or making low legs to a nobleman,
  • Or looking downward with your eyelids close,
  • And saying, “Truly, an't may please your honour,”40
  • Can get you any favour with great men;
  • You must be proud, bold, pleasant, resolute,
  • And now and then stab, as occasion serves.
  • Spencer, thou know'st I hate such formal toys,
  • And use them but of mere hypocrisy.
  • Mine old lord whiles he lived was so precise,
  • That he would take exceptions at my buttons,
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  • And being like pins' heads, blame me for the bigness;
  • Which made me curate-like in mine attire,
  • Though inwardly licentious enough,50
  • And apt for any kind of villainy.
  • I am none of these common pedants, I,
  • That cannot speak without propterea quod.
Y. Spen.
  • But one of those that saith, quandoquidem,
  • And hath a special gift to form a verb.
  • Leave off this jesting, here my lady comes.
  • Enter the Lady.
  • The grief for his exile was not so much,
  • As is the joy of his returning home.
  • This letter came from my sweet Gaveston:
  • What need'st thou, love, thus to excuse thyself?60
  • I know thou could'st not come and visit me:
  • I will not long be from thee, though I die.
  • [Reads.
  • This argues the entire love of my lord;
  • When I forsake thee, death seize on my heart:
  • [Reads.
  • But stay1 thee here where Gaveston shall sleep.
  • Now to the letter of my lord the king.—
  • He wills me to repair unto the court,
  • And meet my Gaveston? why do I stay,
  • Seeing that he talks thus of my marriage-day?
  • Who's there? Baldock!70
  • See that my coach be ready, I must hence.
  • It shall be done, madam.
  • [Exit.
  • And meet me at the park-pale presently.
  • Edition: current; Page: [153]
  • Spencer, stay you and bear me company,
  • For I have joyful news to tell thee of;
  • My lord of Cornwall is a coming over,
  • I knew the king would have him home again.
  • If all things sort out, as I hope they will,
  • Thy service, Spencer, shall be thought upon.80
  • I humbly thank your ladyship.
  • Come, lead the way; I long till I am there.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter1 Edward, the Queen, Lancaster, Young Mortimer, Warwick, Pembroke, Kent, and Attendants.

  • The wind is good, I wonder why he stays;
  • I fear me he is wrecked upon the sea.
  • Look, Lancaster, how passionate he is,
  • And still his mind runs on his minion!
  • My lord.
  • How now! what news? is Gaveston arrived?
Y. Mor.
  • Nothing but Gaveston! what means your grace?
  • You have matters of more weight to think upon;
  • The King of France sets foot in Normandy.
  • A trifle! we'll expel him when we please10
  • But tell me, Mortimer, what's thy device
  • Against the stately triumph we decreed?
Edition: current; Page: [154]
Y. Mor.
  • A homely one, my lord, not worth the telling.
  • Pray thee let me know it.
Y. Mor.
  • But, seeing you are so desirous, thus it is:
  • A lofty cedar-tree, fair flourishing,
  • On whose top-branches kingly eagles perch,
  • And by the bark a canker creeps me up,
  • And gets into the highest bough of all:
  • The motto, Æque tandem.20
  • And what is yours, my lord of Lancaster?
  • My lord, mine's more obscure than Mortimer's.
  • Pliny1 reports there is a2 flying fish
  • Which all the other fishes deadly hate,
  • And therefore, being pursued, it takes the air:
  • No sooner is it up, but there's a fowl
  • That seizeth it: this fish, my lord, I bear,
  • The motto this: Undique mors est.
  • Kent.3 Proud Mortimer! ungentle Lancaster!
  • Is this the love you bear your sovereign?30
  • Is this the fruit your reconcilement bears?
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  • Can you in words make show of amity,
  • And in your shields display your rancorous minds!
  • What call you this but private libelling
  • Sweet husband, be content, they all love you.
  • They love me not that hate my Gaveston.
  • I am that cedar, shake me not too much;
  • And you the eagles; soar ye ne'er so high,
  • I have the jesses1 that will pull you down;40
  • And Æque tandem shall that canker cry
  • Unto the proudest peer of Britamy.
  • Though thou compar'st him to a flying fish,
  • And threatenest death whether he rise or fall,
  • 'Tis not the hugest monster of the sea,
Y. Mor.
  • If in his absence thus he favours him,
  • What will he do whenas he shall be present?
  • That shall we see; look where his lordship comes.
  • Enter Gaveston.
  • My Gaveston!50
  • Welcome to Tynemouth! welcome to thy friend!
  • Thy absence made me droop and pine away;
  • For, as the lovers of fair Danae,
  • When she was locked up in a brazen tower,
  • Desired her more, and waxed outrageous,
  • So did it fare2 with me: and now thy sight
  • Edition: current; Page: [156]
  • Is sweeter far than was thy parting hence
  • Bitter and irksome to my sobbing heart.
  • Sweet lord and king, your speech preventeth mine,
  • Yet have I words left to express my joy;60
  • The shepherd nipt with biting winter's rage
  • Frolics not more to see the painted spring,
  • Than I do to behold your majesty.
  • Will none of you salute my Gaveston?
  • Salute him? yes; welcome, Lord Chamberlain!
Y. Mor.
  • Welcome is the good Earl of Cornwall!
  • Welcome, Lord Governor of the Isle of Man!
  • Welcome, Master Secretary!
  • Brother, do you hear them?
  • Still will these earls and barons use me thus.70
  • My lord, I cannot brook these injuries.
  • Ay me, poor soul, when these begin to jar.
  • [Aside.
  • Return it to their throats, I'll be thy warrant.
  • Base, leaden earls, that glory in your birth,
  • Go sit at home and eat your tenants' beef;
  • And come not here to scoff at Gaveston,
  • Whose mounting thoughts did never creep so low
  • As to bestow a look on such as you.
  • Yet I disdain not to do this for you.
  • [Draws.
  • Treason! treason! where's the traitor?80
  • Here! here! king.1
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  • Convey hence Gaveston; they'll murder him.
  • The life of thee shall salve this foul disgrace.
Y. Mor.
  • Villain! thy life, unless I miss mine aim.
  • [Offers to stab him.
  • Ah! furious Mortimer, what hast thou done?
Y. Mor.
  • No more than I would answer, were he slain.
  • [Exit Gaveston with Attendants.
  • Yes, more than thou canst answer, though he live;
  • Dear shall you both abide this riotous deed.
  • Out of my presence! come not near the court.
Y. Mor.
  • I'll not be barred the court for Gaveston.90
  • We'll hale him by the ears unto the block.
  • Look to your own heads; his is sure enough.
  • Look to your own crown, if you back him thus.
  • Warwick, these words do ill beseem thy years.
  • Nay, all of them conspire to cross me thus;
  • But if I live, I'll tread upon their heads
  • That think with high looks thus to tread me down.
  • Come, Edmund, let's away and levy men,
  • Tis war that must abate these barons' pride.
  • [Exeunt the King, Queen, and Kent.
  • Let's to our castles, for the king is moved.100
Y. Mor.
  • Moved may he be, and perish in his wrath!
  • Cousin, it is no dealing with him now,
  • He means to make us stoop by force of arms;
  • And therefore let us jointly here protest,
  • To prosecute that Gaveston to the death.
Edition: current; Page: [158]
Y. Mor.
  • By heaven, the abject villain shall not live!
  • I'll have his blood, or die in seeking it.
  • The like oath Pembroke takes.
  • And so doth Lancaster.
  • Now send our heralds to defy the king;
  • And make the people swear to put him down.110
  • Enter Messenger.
Y. Mor.
  • Letters! from whence?
  • From Scotland, my lord.
  • [Giving letters to Mortimer.
  • Why, how now, cousin, how fares all our friends?
Y. Mor.
  • My uncle's taken prisoner by the Scots.
  • We'll have him ransomed, man; be of good cheer.
Y. Mor.
  • They rate his ransom at five thousand pound.
  • Who should defray the money but the king,
  • Seeing he is taken prisoner in his wars?
  • I'll to the king.
  • Do, cousin, and I'll bear thee company.
  • Meantime, my lord of Pembroke and myself120
  • Will to Newcastle here, and gather head.
Y. Mor.
  • About it then, and we will follow you.
  • Be resolute and full of secrecy.
  • I warrant you.
  • [Exit with Pembroke.
Y. Mor.
  • Cousin, and if he will not ransom him,
  • I'll thunder such a peal into his ears,
  • As never subject did unto his king.1
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  • Content, I'll bear my part—Holla! who's there?
  • [Guard appears.
  • Enter Guard.
Y. Mor.
  • Ay, marry, such a guard as this doth well.
  • Lead on the way.130
  • Whither will your lordships?
Y. Mor.
  • Whither else but to the king.
  • His highness is disposed to be alone.
  • Why, so he may, but we will speak to him.
  • You may not in, my lord.
Y. Mor.
  • May we not?
  • Enter1 Edward and Kent.
  • How now! what noise is this?
  • Who have we there, is't you?
  • [Going.
Y. Mor.
  • Nay, stay, my lord, I come to bring you news;
  • Mine uncle's taken prisoner by the Scots.140
  • Then ransom him.
  • 'Twas in your wars; you should ransom him.
Y. Mor.
  • And you shall ransom him, or else—
  • What! Mortimer, you will not threaten him?
  • Quiet yourself, you shall have the broad seal,
  • To gather for him th[o]roughout the realm.
  • Your minion Gaveston hath taught you this.
Y. Mor.
  • My lord, the family of the Mortimers
  • Are not so poor, but, would they sell their land,
  • 'Twould2 levy men enough to anger you.150
  • We never beg, but use such prayers as these.
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  • Shall I still be haunted thus?
Y. Mor.
  • Nay, now you're here alone, I'll speak my mind.
  • And so will I, and then, my lord, farewell.
Y. Mor.
  • The idle triumphs, masks, lascivious shows,
  • And prodigal gifts bestowed on Gaveston,
  • Have drawn thy treasury1 dry, and made thee weak;
  • The murmuring commons, overstretchèd, break.2
  • Look for rebellion, look to be deposed;
  • Thy garrisons are beaten out of France,160
  • And, lame and poor, lie groaning at the gates.
  • The wild Oneyl, with swarms of Irish kerns,3
  • Lives uncontrolled within the English pale.
  • Unto the walls of York the Scots make4 road,
  • And unresisted drive5 away rich spoils.
Y. Mor.
  • The haughty Dane commands the narrow seas,6
  • While in the harbour ride thy ships unrigged.
  • What foreign prince sends thee ambassadors?
Y. Mor.
  • Who loves thee, but a sort of flatterers?
  • Thy gentle queen, sole sister to Valois,170
  • Complains that thou hast left her all forlorn.
Y. Mor.
  • Thy court is naked, being bereft of those
  • That make a king seem glorious to the world;
  • I mean the peers, whom thou should'st dearly love:
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  • Libels are cast again1 thee in the street:
  • Ballads and rhymes made of thy overthrow.
  • The Northern borderers seeing their houses burnt,
  • Their wives and children slain, run up and down,
  • Cursing the name of thee and Gaveston.
Y. Mor.
  • When wert thou in the field with banner spread,180
  • But once? and then thy soldiers marched like players,
  • With garish robes, not armour; and thyself,
  • Bedaubed with gold, rode laughing at the rest,
  • Nodding and shaking of thy spangled crest,
  • Where women's favours hung like labels down.
  • And thereof came it, that the fleering2 Scots,
  • To England's high disgrace, have made this jig;
  • Maids3 of England, sore may you mourn,
  • For your lemans you have lost at Bannocksbourn,
  • With a heave and a ho!150
  • What weeneth the King of England,
  • So soon to have won Scotland?
  • With a rombelow!4
Edition: current; Page: [162]
Y. Mor.
  • Wigmore1 shall fly, to set my uncle free.
  • And when 'tis gone, our swords shall purchase more.
  • If ye be moved, revenge it as you can;
  • Look next to see us with our ensigns spread.
  • [Exeunt Nobles.
  • My swelling heart for very anger breaks!
  • How oft have I been baited by these peers,
  • And dare not be revenged, for their power is great!200
  • Yet, shall the crowing of these cockerels
  • Affright a lion? Edward, unfold thy paws,
  • And let their lives' blood slake thy fury's hunger.
  • If I be cruel and grow tyrannous,
  • Now let them thank themselves, and rue too late.
  • My lord, I see your love to Gaveston
  • Will be the ruin of the realm and you,
  • For now the wrathful nobles threaten wars,
  • Art thou an enemy to my Gaveston?210
  • Ay, and it grieves me that I favoured him.
  • Traitor, begone! whine thou with Mortimer.
  • So will I, rather than with Gaveston.
  • Out of my sight, and trouble me no more!
  • No marvel though thou scorn thy noble peers,
  • When I thy brother am rejected thus.
  • [Exit.
  • Away!
  • Edition: current; Page: [163]
  • Poor Gaveston, that has no friend but me,
  • Do what they can, we'll live in Tynemouth here,
  • And, so I walk with him about the walls,220
  • What care I though the Earls begirt us round?—
  • Here cometh she that's cause of all these jars.
  • Enter the Queen, with King's Niece, two Ladies, Gaveston, Baldock, and Young Spencer.
  • My lord, 'tis thought the Earls are up in arms.
  • Ay, and 'tis likewise thought you favour 'em.1
  • Thus do you still suspect me without cause?
  • Sweet uncle! speak more kindly to the queen.
  • My lord, dissemble with her, speak her fair.
  • Pardon me, sweet, I forgot myself.
  • Your pardon is quickly got of Isabel.
  • The younger Mortimer is grown so brave,230
  • That to my face he threatens civil wars.
  • Why do you not commit him to the Tower?
  • I dare not, for the people love him well.
  • Why, then we'll have him privily made away.
  • Would Lancaster and he had both caroused
  • A bowl of poison to each other's health!
  • But let them go, and tell me what are these.
  • Two of my father's servants whilst he liv'd,—
  • May't please your grace to entertain them now.
  • Tell me, where wast thou born? what is thine arms?240
  • My name is Baldock, and my gentry
  • I fetch from Oxford, not from heraldry.
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  • The fitter art thou, Baldock, for my turn.
  • Wait on me, and I'll see thou shall not want.
  • I humbly thank your majesty.
  • Knowest thou him, Gaveston?
  • Ay, my lord;
  • His name is Spencer, he is well allied;
  • Then, Spencer, wait upon me; for his sake250
  • I'll grace thee with a higher style ere long.
Y. Spen.
  • No greater titles happen unto me,
  • Than to be favoured of your majesty.
  • Cousin, this day shall be your marriage-feast.
  • And, Gaveston, think that I love thee well,
  • To wed thee to our niece, the only heir
  • I know, my lord, many will stomach me,
  • But I respect neither their love nor hate.
  • The headstrong barons shall not limit me;260
  • He that I list to favour shall be great.
  • Come, let's away; and when the marriage ends,
  • Have at the rebels, and their 'complices!
  • [Exeunt omnes.


Enter1 Lancaster, Young Mortimer, Warwick, Pembroke, and Kent.

  • My lords, of love to this our native land I come to join with you and leave the king;
  • Edition: current; Page: [165]
  • And in your quarrel and the realm's behoof
  • Will be the first that shall adventure life.
  • I fear me, you are sent of policy,
  • To undermine us with a show of love.
  • He is your brother, therefore have we cause
  • To cast1 the worst, and doubt of your revolt.
  • Mine honour shall be hostage of my truth:
  • If that will not suffice, farewell, my lords.10
Y. Mor.
  • Stay, Edmund; never was Plantagenet
  • False of his word, and therefore trust we thee.
  • But what's the reason you should leave him now?
  • I have informed the Earl of Lancaster.
  • And it sufficeth. Now, my lords, know this,
  • That Gaveston is secretly arrived,
  • And here in Tynemouth frolics with the king.
  • Let us with these our followers scale the walls,
  • And suddenly surprise them unawares.
  • And I'll follow thee.20
Y. Mor.
  • This tottered2 ensign of my ancestors,
  • Which swept the desert shore of that dead3 sea
  • Whereof we got the name of Mortimer,
  • Will I advance upon this castle['s] walls.
  • Drums, strike alarum, raise them from their sport,
  • And ring aloud the knell of Gaveston!
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  • None be so hardy as [to] touch the king;
  • But neither spare you Gaveston nor his friends.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter1 the King and Young Spencer.

  • O tell me, Spencer, where is Gaveston?
  • I fear me he is slain, my gracious lord.
  • No, here he comes; now let them spoil and kill.
  • Enter Queen, King's Niece, Gaveston, and Nobles.
  • Fly, fly, my lords, the earls have got the hold;
  • Take shipping and away to Scarborough;
  • Spencer and I will post away by land.
  • O stay, my lord, they will not injure you.
  • I will not trust them; Gaveston, away!
  • Farewell, my lord.
  • Lady, farewell.
  • Farewell, sweet uncle, till we meet again.10
  • Farewell, sweet Gaveston; and farewell, niece.
  • No farewell to poor Isabel thy queen?
  • Yes, yes, for Mortimer, your lover's sake.
  • [Exeunt all but Isabel.
  • Heaven can witness I love none but you:
  • From my embracements thus he breaks away.
  • O that mine arms could close this isle about,
  • That I might pull him to me where I would!
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  • Or that these tears, that drizzle from mine eyes,
  • Had power to mollify his stony heart,
  • That when I had him we might never part.20
  • Enter the Barons. Alarums.
  • I wonder how he scaped!
Y. Mor.
  • Who's this, the queen?
  • Ay, Mortimer, the miserable queen,
  • Whose pining heart her inward sighs have blasted, And body with continual mourning wasted:
  • These hands are tired with haling of my lord
  • From Gaveston, from wicked Gaveston,
  • And all in vain; for, when I speak him fair,
  • He turns away, and smiles upon his minion.
Y. Mor.
  • Cease to lament, and tell us where's the king?
  • What would you with the king? is't him you seek?30
  • No, madam, but that cursèd Gaveston.
  • Far be it from the thought of Lancaster
  • To offer violence to his sovereign.
  • We would but rid the realm of Gaveston:
  • He's gone by water unto Scarborough;
  • Pursue him quickly, and he cannot scape;
  • The king hath left him, and his train is small.
  • Foreslow1 no time, sweet Lancaster, let's march.
Y. Mor.
  • How comes it that the king and he is parted?40
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  • That thus1 your army, going several ways,
  • Might be of lesser force: and with the power
  • That he intendeth presently to raise,
  • Be easily suppressed; therefore2 be gone.
Y. Mor.
  • Here in the river rides a Flemish hoy;
  • Let's all aboard, and follow him amain.
  • The wind that bears him hence will fill our sails:
  • Come, come aboard, 'tis but an hour's sailing.
Y. Mor.
  • Madam, stay you within this castle here.
  • No, Mortimer, I'll to my lord the king.50
Y. Mor.
  • Nay, rather sail with us to Scarborough.
  • You know the king is so suspicious,
  • As if he hear I have but talked with you,
  • Mine honour will be called in question;
Y. Mor.
  • Madam, I cannot stay to answer you,
  • But think of Mortimer as he deserves.
  • [Exeunt Barons.
  • So well hast thou deserved, sweet Mortimer,
  • As Isabel could live with thee for ever.
  • In vain I look for love at Edward's hand,60
  • Whose eyes are fixed on none but Gaveston.
  • Yet once more I'll importune him with prayer:
  • If he be strange and not regard my words,
  • My son and I will over into France,
  • And to the king my brother there complain,
  • How Gaveston hath robbed me of his love:
  • But yet I hope my sorrows will have end,
  • And Gaveston this blessèd day be slain.
  • [Exit.
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Enter1 Gaveston, pursued.

  • Yet, lusty lords, I have escaped your hands,
  • Your threats, your larums, and your hot pursuits;
  • And though divorcèd from King Edward's eyes,
  • Yet liveth Pierce of Gaveston unsurprised,
  • Breathing, in hope (malgrado2 all your beards,
  • That muster rebels thus against your king),
  • To see3 his royal sovereign once again.
  • Enter the Nobles.
  • Upon him, soldiers, take away his weapons.
Y. Mor.
  • Thou proud disturber of thy country's peace,
  • Corrupter of thy king; cause of these broils,10
  • Base flatterer, yield! and were it not for shame,
  • Shame and dishonour to a soldier's name,
  • Upon my weapon's point here should'st thou fall,
  • And welter in thy gore.
  • Monster of men!
  • That, like the Greekish strumpet, trained to arms
  • And bloody wars so many valiant knights;
  • Look for no other fortune, wretch, than death!
  • King Edward is not here to buckler thee.
  • Lancaster, why talk'st thou to the slave?
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  • Go, soldiers, take him hence, for, by my sword,20
  • His head shall off: Gaveston, short warning
  • Shall serve thy turn. It is our country's cause,
  • That here severely we will execute
  • My lord!—
  • Soldiers, have him away;—
  • But for thou wert the favourite of a king,
  • Thou shalt have so much honour at our hands1
  • I thank you all, my lords: then I perceive,
  • That heading is one, and hanging is the other,
  • And death is all.
  • Enter Earl Of Arundel.
  • How now, my lord of Arundel?30
  • My lords, King Edward greets you all by me.
  • Arundel, say your message.
  • His majesty,
  • Hearing that you had taken Gaveston,
  • Entreateth you by me, yet but he may
  • See him before he dies; for why, he says,
  • And sends you word, he knows that die he shall;
  • And if you gratify his grace so far,
  • He will be mindful of the courtesy.
  • How now?
  • Renowmèd Edward, how thy name
  • Revives poor Gaveston!
  • No, it needeth not;40
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  • Arundel, we will gratify the king
  • In other matters; he must pardon us in this.
  • Soldiers, away with him!
  • Why, my lord of Warwick,
  • Will not these delays beget my hopes?1
  • I know it, lords, it is this life you aim at,
  • Yet grant King Edward this.
Y. Mor.
  • Shalt thou appoint
  • What we shall grant? Soldiers, away with him:
  • Thus we'll gratify the king,
  • We'll send his head by thee; let him bestow
  • His tears on that, for that is all he gets50
  • Of Gaveston, or else his senseless trunk.
  • Not so, my lords, lest he bestow more cost
  • In burying him than he hath ever earned.
  • My lords, it is his majesty's request,
  • And in the honour of a king he swears,
  • He will but talk with him, and send him back.
  • When? can you tell?2 Arundel, no; we wot,
  • He that the care of his3 realm remits,
  • And drives his nobles to these exigents
  • For Gaveston, will, if he seize4 him once,60
  • Violate any promise to possess him.
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  • Then if you will not trust his grace in keep,
  • My lords, I will be pledge for his return.
Y. Mor.
  • 'Tis1 honourable in thee to offer this;
  • But for we know thou art a noble gentleman,
  • We will not wrong thee so, to make away
  • A true man for a thief.
  • How mean'st thou, Mortimer? that is over-base.
Y. Mor.
  • Away, base groom, robber of king's renown!
  • Question with thy companions and mates.70
  • My Lord Mortimer, and you, my lords, each one,
  • To gratify the king's request therein.
  • Touching the sending of this Gaveston,
  • Because his majesty so earnestly
  • Desires to see the man before his death,
  • I will upon mine honour undertake
  • To carry him, and bring him back again;
  • Provided this, that you my lord of Arundel
  • Will join with me.
  • Pembroke, what wilt thou do?
  • Cause yet more bloodshed? is it not enough80
  • That we have taken him, but must we now
  • Leave him on “had I wist,”2 and let him go?
  • Pem, My lords, I will not over-woo your honours,
  • But if you dare trust Pembroke with the prisoner,
  • Upon mine oath, I will return him back.
  • My lord of Lancaster, what say you in this?
  • Why, I say, let him go on Pembroke's word.
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  • And you, Lord Mortimer?
Y. Mor.
  • How say you, my lord of Warwick?
  • Nay, do your pleasures, I know how'twill prove.
  • Then give him me.
  • Sweet sovereign, yet I come90
  • To see thee ere I die.
  • Yet not perhaps,
  • If Warwick's wit and policy prevail.
  • [Aside.
Y. Mor.
  • My lord of Pembroke, we deliver him you;
  • Return him on your honour. Sound, away!
  • [Exeunt all but Pembroke, Arundel,1 Gaveston, and Pembroke'S Men.
  • My lord [of Arundel], you shall go with me.
  • My house is not far hence; out of the way
  • A little, but our men shall go along.
  • We that have pretty wenches to our wives,
  • Sir, must not come so near to baulk their lips.
  • 'Tis very kindly spoke, my lord of Pembroke;100
  • Your honour hath an adamant of power
  • To draw a prince.
  • So, my lord. Come hither, James:
  • I do commit this Gaveston to thee,
  • Be thou this night his keeper, in the morning
  • Unhappy Gaveston, whither goest thou now?
  • [Exit with James and Pembroke'S Men.
  • My lord, we'll quickly be at Cobham.
  • [Exeunt.
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Enter1 Gaveston mourning, James, and the Earl Of Pembroke'S Men.

  • O treacherous Warwick! thus to wrong thy friend.
  • I see it is your life these arms pursue.
  • Weaponless must I fall, and die in bands?
  • O! must this day be period of my life?
  • Centre of all my bliss! An ye be men,
  • Speed to the king.
  • Enter Warwick and his company.
  • My lord of Pembroke's men,
  • Strive you no longer—I will have that Gaveston.
  • Your lordship does dishonour to yourself,
  • And wrong our lord, your honourable friend.
  • No, James, it is my country's cause I follow.10
  • Go, take the villain; soldiers, come away.
  • We'll make quick work. Commend me to your master,
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  • My friend, and tell him that I watched it well.
  • Come, let thy shadow1 parley with King Edward.
  • Treacherous earl, shall I not see the king?
  • The king of Heaven perhaps, no other king.
  • Away! [Exeunt Warwick and his Men with Gaveston.
  • Come, fellows, it booted not for us to strive,
  • We will in haste go certify our lord.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter2 King Edward and Young Spencer, Baldock, and Nobles of the king's side, with drums and fifes.

  • I long to hear an answer from the barons
  • Touching my friend, my dearest Gaveston.
  • Ah! Spencer, not the riches of my realm
  • Can ransom him! ah, he is marked to die!
  • I know the malice of the younger Mortimer,
  • Warwick I know is rough, and Lancaster
  • Inexorable, and I shall never see
  • My lovely Pierce of Gaveston again!
  • The barons overbear me with their pride.
Y. Spen.
  • Were I King Edward, England's sovereign,10
  • Son to the lovely Eleanor of Spain,
  • Great Edward Longshanks' issue, would I bear
  • These braves,3 this rage, and suffer uncontrolled
  • These barons thus to beard me in my land,
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  • In mine own realm? My lord, pardon my speech:
  • Did you retain your father's magnanimity,
  • Did you regard the honour of your name,
  • You would not suffer thus your majesty
  • Be counterbuft of your nobility.
  • Strike off their heads, and let them preach on poles!20
  • No doubt, such lessons they will teach the rest,
  • As by their preachments they will profit much,
  • And learn obedience to their lawful king.
  • Yea, gentle Spencer, we have been too mild,
  • Too kind to them; but now have drawn our sword,
  • And if they send me not my Gaveston,
  • We'll steel it on their crest, and poll their tops.
  • This haught1 resolve becomes your majesty
  • Not to be tied to their affection,
  • As though your highness were a schoolboy still,30
  • And must be awed and governed like a child.
  • Enter Hugh Spencer, father to the Young Spencer, with his truncheon and Soldiers.
E. Spen.
  • Long live my sovereign, the noble Edward—
  • In peace triumphant, fortunate in wars!
  • Welcome, old man, com'st thou in Edward's aid?
  • Then tell thy2 prince of whence, and what thou art.
E. Spen.
  • Lo, with a band of bowmen and of pikes,
  • Brown bills and targeteers, four hundred strong,
  • Sworn to defend King Edward's royal right,
  • I come in person to your majesty,
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  • Spencer, the father of Hugh Spencer there,40
  • Bound to your highness everlastingly,
  • For favour done, in him, unto us all.
  • Thy father, Spencer?
Y. Spen.
  • True, an it like your grace,
  • That pours, in lieu of all your goodness shown,
  • His life, my lord, before your princely feet.
  • Welcome ten thousand times, old man, again.
  • Spencer, this love, this kindness to thy king,
  • Argues thy noble mind and disposition.
  • Spencer, I here create thee Earl of Wiltshire,
  • And daily will enrich thee with our favour,50
  • That, as the sunshine, shall reflect o'er thee.
  • Beside, the more to manifest our love,
  • Because we hear Lord Bruce doth sell his land,
  • And that the Mortimers are in hand withal,
  • Thou shalt have crowns of us t' outbid the barons:
  • And, Spencer, spare them not, lay it on.
Y. Spen.
  • My lord, here comes1 the queen.
  • Enter the Queen and her Son, and Levune, a Frenchman.
  • Madam, what news?
  • News of dishonour, lord, and discontent.
  • Our friend Levune, faithful and full of trust,60
  • Informeth us, by letters and by words,
  • That Lord Valois our brother, King of France,
  • Because your highness hath been slack in homage,
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  • Hath seizèd Normandy into his hands.
  • Welcome, Levune. Tush, Sib, if this be all,
  • Valois and I will soon be friends again.—
  • But to my Gaveston; shall I never see,
  • Never behold thee now?1—Madam, in this matter,
  • We will employ you and your little son;70
  • You shall go parley with the King of France.
  • Boy, see you bear you bravely to the king,
  • And do your message with a majesty.
  • Commit not to my youth things of more weight
  • Than fits a prince so young as I to bear,
  • And fear not, lord and father, heaven's great beams
  • On Atlas' shoulder shall not lie more safe,
  • Ah, boy! this towardness makes thy mother fear
  • Thou art not marked to many days on earth.80
  • Madam, we will that you with speed be shipped,
  • And this our son; Levune shall follow you
  • With all the haste we can despatch him hence.
  • Choose of our lords to bear you company;
  • Unnatural wars, where subjects brave their king;
  • God end them once! My lord, I take my leave,
  • To make my preparation for France.
  • [Exit with Prince.
  • Enter Arundel.
  • What, Lord Arandel, dost thou come alone?
Edition: current; Page: [179]
  • Yea, my good lord, for Gaveston is dead.90
  • Ah, traitors! have they put my friend to death?
  • Tell me, Arundel, died he ere thou cam'st,
  • Or didst thou see my friend to take his death?
  • Neither, my lord; for as he was surprised,
  • Begirt with weapons and with enemies round,
  • I did your highness' message to them all;
  • Demanding him of them, entreating rather,
  • And said, upon the honour of my name,
  • That I would undertake to carry him
  • Unto your highness, and to bring him back.100
  • And tell me, would the rebels deny me that?
Y. Spen.
  • Proud recreants!
  • Yea, Spencer, traitors all.
  • I found them at the first inexorable;
  • The Earl of Warwick would not bide the hearing,
  • Mortimer hardly; Pembroke and Lancaster
  • Spake least: and when they flatly had denied,
  • Refusing to receive me pledge for him,
  • The Earl of Pembroke mildly thus bespake;
  • “My lords, because our sovereign sends for him,
  • And promiseth he shall be safe returned,110
  • I will this undertake, to have him hence,
  • And see him re-delivered to your hands.”
  • Well, and how fortunes [it] that he came not?
Y. Spen.
  • Some treason, or some villany, was the cause.
  • The Earl of Warwick seized him on his way;
  • For being delivered unto Pembroke's men,
  • Their lord rode home thinking his prisoner safe;
  • But ere he came, Warwick in ambush lay,
  • Edition: current; Page: [180]
  • And bare him to his death; and in a trench
  • Strake off his head, and marched unto the camp.120
Y. Spen.
  • A bloody part, flatly against law of arms.
  • O shall I speak, or shall I sigh and die!
Y. Spen.
  • My lord, refer your vengeance to the sword
  • Upon these barons; hearten up your men;
  • Let them not unrevenged murder your friends!
  • Advance your standard, Edward, in the field,
  • And march to fire them from their starting-holes.
  • [Edward kneels.
  • By earth, the common mother of us all,
  • By heaven, and all the moving orbs thereof,
  • By this right hand, and by my father's sword,130
  • And all the honours 'longing to my crown,
  • I will have heads, and lives for him, as many
  • As I have manors, castles, towns, and towers!
  • [Rises.
  • Treacherous Warwick! traitorous Mortimer!
  • If I be England's king, in lakes of gore
  • Your headless trunks, your bodies will I trail,
  • That you may drink your fill, and quaff in blood,
  • And stain my royal standard with the same,
  • That so my bloody colours may suggest
  • Remembrance of revenge immortally140
  • On your accursèd traitorous progeny,
  • You villains, that have slain my Gaveston!
  • And in this place of honour and of trust,
  • Spencer, sweet Spencer, I adopt thee here;
  • And merely of our love we do create thee
  • Earl of Gloucester, and Lord Chamberlain,
  • Despite of times, despite of enemies.
Edition: current; Page: [181]
Y. Spen.
  • My lord, here is1 a messenger from the barons
  • Desires access unto your majesty.
  • Admit him near.150
  • Enter the Herald from the Barons, with his coat of arms.
  • Long live King Edward, England's lawful lord!
  • So wish not they, I wis, that sent thee hither.
  • Thou com'st from Mortimer and his complices,
  • A ranker rout2 of rebels never was.
  • Well, say thy message.
  • The barons up in arms, by me salute
  • Your highness with long life and happiness;
  • And bid me say, as plainer to your grace,
  • That if without effusion of blood
  • You will this grief have ease and remedy,160
  • That from your princely person you remove
  • This Spencer, as a putrifying branch,
  • That deads the royal vine, whose golden leaves3
  • Empale your princely head, your diadem,
  • Whose brightness such pernicious upstarts dim,
  • Say they; and lovingly advise your grace,
  • To cherish virtue and nobility,
  • And have old servitors in high esteem,
  • And shake off smooth dissembling flatterers:
  • Edition: current; Page: [182]
  • This granted, they, their honours, and their lives,170
  • Are to your highness vowed and consecrate.
Y. Spen.
  • Ah, traitors! will they still display their pride?
  • Away, tarry no answer, but be gone!
  • Rebels, will they appoint their sovereign
  • His sports, his pleasures, and his company?
  • Yet, ere thou go, see how I do divorce
  • [Embraces Spencer.
  • Spencer from me.—Now get thee to thy lords,
  • And tell them I will come to chastise them
  • For murdering Gaveston; hie thee, get thee gone!
  • Edward with fire and sword follows at thy heels.180
  • My lord[s], perceive you how these rebels swell?
  • Soldiers, good hearts, defend your sovereign's right,
  • For now, even now, we march to make them stoop.
  • Away!
  • [Exeunt. Alarums, excursions, a great fight, and a retreat.


Enter the King, Elder Spencer, Young Spencer, and the Noblemen of the King'S side.

  • Why do we sound retreat? upon them, lords!
  • This day I shall pour vengeance with my sword
  • On those proud rebels that are up in arms,
Y. Spen.
  • I doubt it not, my lord, right will prevail.
E. Spen.
  • 'Tis not amiss, my liege, for either part
  • To breathe awhile; our men, with sweat and dust
  • Edition: current; Page: [183]
  • All choked well near, begin to faint for heat;
  • And this retire refresheth horse and man.
Y. Spen.
  • Here come the rebels.10
  • Enter Young Mortimer, Lancaster, Warwick, Pembroke, &c.
Y. Mor.
  • Look, Lancaster, yonder is Edward
  • Among his flatterers.
  • And there let him be
  • Till he pay dearly for their company.
  • And shall, or Warwick's sword shall smite in vain.
  • What, rebels, do you shrink and sound retreat?
Y. Mor.
  • No, Edward, no, thy flatterers faint and fly.
  • They'd best betimes forsake thee, and their trains,1
  • For they'll betray thee, traitors as they are.
Y. Spen.
  • Traitor on thy face, rebellious Lancaster!
  • Away, base upstart, bravest thou nobles thus?20
E. Spen.
  • A noble attempt, and honourable deed,
  • Is2 it not, trow ye, to assemble aid,
  • And levy arms against your lawful king!
  • For which ere long their heads shall satisfy,
  • To appease the wrath of their offended king.
Y. Mor.
  • Then, Edward, thou wilt fight it to the last,
  • And rather bathe thy sword in subjects' blood,
  • Than banish that pernicious company?
  • Ay, traitors all, rather than thus be braved,
  • Edition: current; Page: [184]
  • Make England's civil towns huge heaps of stones,30
  • And ploughs to go about our palace-gates.
  • A desperate and unnatural resolution!
  • Alarum!-to the fight!
  • St. George for England, and the barons' right.
  • St. George for England, and King Edward's right.
  • [Alarums. Exeunt.
  • Re-enter Edward and his followers, with the Barons and Kent, captives.
  • Now, lusty lords, now, not by chance of war,
  • But justice of the quarrel and the cause,
  • Vailed is your pride; methinks you hang the heads,
  • But we'll advance them, traitors; now 'tis time
  • To be avenged on you for all your braves,40
  • And for the murder of my dearest friend,
  • To whom right well you knew our soul was knit,
  • Good Pierce of Gaveston, my sweet favourite
  • Ah, rebels! recreants! you made him away.
  • Brother, in regard of thee, and of thy land,
  • Did they remove that flatterer from thy throne.
  • So, sir, you have spoke; away, avoid our presence.
  • [Exit Kent.
  • Accursèd wretches, was't in regard of us,
  • When we had sent our messenger to request
  • He might be spared to come to speak with us,50
  • And Pembroke undertook for his return,
  • That thou, proud Warwick, watched the prisoner,
  • Poor Pierce, and headed him 'gainst law of arms?
  • Edition: current; Page: [185]
  • For which thy head shall overlook the rest,
  • As much as thou in rage outwent'st the rest.
  • Tyrant, I scorn thy threats and menaces;
  • It is but temporal that thou canst inflict.
  • The worst is death, and better die to live
  • Than live in infamy under such a king.
  • Away with them, my lord of Winchester!60
  • These lusty leaders, Warwick and Lancaster,
  • I charge you roundly—off with both their heads!
  • Away!
  • Farewell, vain world!
  • Sweet Mortimer, farewell.
Y. Mor.
  • England, unkind to thy nobility,
  • Go, take that haughty Mortimer to the Tower,
  • There see him safe bestowed; and for the rest,
  • Do speedy execution on them all.
  • Begone!70
Y. Mor.
  • What, Mortimer! can ragged stony walls
  • Immure thy virtue that aspires to heaven?
  • No, Edward, England's scourge, it may not be;
  • Mortimer's hope surmounts his fortune far.
  • [The captive Barons are led off.
  • Sound drums and trumpets! March with me,
  • my friends,
  • Edward this day hath crowned him king anew.
  • [Exeunt all except Young Spencer, Levune, and Baldock.
Y. Spen.
  • Levune, the trust that we repose in thee,
  • Begets the quiet of King Edward's land.
  • Edition: current; Page: [186]
  • Therefore begone in haste, and with advice
  • Bestow that pleasure on the lords of France,80
  • That, therewith all enchanted, like the guard
  • That suffered Jove to pass in showers of gold
  • To Danae, all aid may be denied
  • To Isabel, the queen, that now in France
  • Makes friends, to cross the seas with her young son,
  • And step into his father's regiment.1
  • That's it these barons and the subtle queen Long levelled2 at.
  • Yea, but, Levune, thou seest
  • These barons lay their heads on blocks together;
  • What they intend, the hangman frustrates clean.90
  • Have you no doubt, my lords, I'll clap3 so close
  • Among the lords of France with England's gold,
  • That Isabel shall make her plaints in vain,
Y. Spen.
  • Then make for France, amain—Levune,
  • away!
  • Proclaim King Edward's wars and victories.
  • [Exeunt omnes.
Edition: current; Page: [187]



Enter1 Kent.

  • Fair blows the wind for France; blow gentle gale,
  • Till Edmund be arrived for England's good!
  • Nature, yield to my country's cause in this.
  • A brother? no, a butcher of thy friends!
  • Proud Edward, dost thou banish me thy presence?
  • But I'll to France, and cheer the wronged queen,
  • And certify what Edward's looseness is.
  • Unnatural king! to slaughter noblemen
  • And cherish flatterers! Mortimer, I stay
  • Thy sweet escape; stand gracious, gloomy night,10
  • To his device.
  • Enter Young Mortimer, disguised.
Y. Mor.
  • Holla! who walketh there?
  • Is't you, my lord?
  • Mortimer, 'tis I;
  • But hath thy potion wrought so happily?
Edition: current; Page: [188]
Y. Mor.
  • It hath, my lord; the warders all asleep,
  • I thank them, gave me leave to pass in peace.
  • But hath your grace got shipping unto France?
  • Fear it not.
  • [Exeunt


Enter1 the Queen and her Son.

  • Ah, boy! our friends do fail us all in France:
  • The lords are cruel, and the king unkind;
  • What shall we do?2
  • Madam, return to England,
  • And please my father well, and then a fig
  • For all my uncle's friendship here in France.
  • I warrant you, I'll win his highness quickly;
  • 'A loves me better than a thousand Spencers.
  • Ah, boy, thou art deceived, at least in this,
  • To think that we can yet be tuned together;
  • No, no, we jar too far. Unkind Valois!10
  • Unhappy Isabel! when France rejects,
  • Whither, oh! whither dost thou bend thy steps?
  • Enter Sir John Hainault.
Sir J.
  • Madam, what cheer?
  • Ah! good Sir John of Hainault,
  • Never so cheerless, nor so far distrest.
Sir J.
  • I hear, sweet lady, of the king's unkindness;
  • But droop not, madam; noble minds contemn
  • Edition: current; Page: [189]
  • Despair: will your grace with me to Hainault,
  • And there stay time's advantage with your son?
  • How say you, my lord, will you go with your friends,
  • And shake off all our fortunes equally?20
  • So pleaseth1 the queen, my mother, me it likes:
  • The king of England, nor the court of France,
  • Shall have me from my gracious mother's side,
  • Till I be strong enough to break a staff;
  • And then have at the proudest Spencer's head.
Sir J.
  • Well said, my lord.
  • O, my sweet heart, how do I moan thy wrongs,
  • Yet triumph in the hope of thee, my joy!
  • Ah, sweet Sir John! even to the utmost verge
  • Of Europe, or2 the shore of Tanais,30
  • We will with thee to Hainault—so we will:—
  • The marquis is a noble gentleman;
  • His grace, I dare presume, will welcome me.
  • But who are these?
  • Enter Kent and Young Mortimer.
  • Madam, long may you live,
  • Much happier than your friends in England do!
  • Lord Edmund and Lord Mortimer alive!
  • Welcome to France! the news was here, my lord,
  • That you were dead, or very near your death.
Edition: current; Page: [190]
Y. Mor.
  • Lady, the last was truest of the twain:
  • But Mortimer, reserved for better hap,40
  • Hath shaken off the thraldom of the Tower,
  • And lives t' advance your standard, good my lord.
  • How mean you? and the king, my father, lives!
  • No, my Lord Mortimer, not I, I trow.
  • Not, son! why not? I would it were no worse.
  • But, gentle lords, friendless we are in France.
Y. Mor.
  • Monsieur le Grand, a noble friend of yours,
  • Told us, at our arrival, all the news;
  • How hard the nobles, how unkind the king
  • Hath showed himself; but, madam, right makes room50
  • Where weapons want; and, though a many friends
  • Are made away, as Warwick, Lancaster,
  • And others of our party1 and faction;
  • Yet have we friends, assure your grace, in England
  • Would cast up caps, and clap their hands for joy,
  • To see us there, appointed2 for our foes.
  • Would all were well, and Edward well reclaimed,
  • For England's honour, peace, and quietness.
Y. Mor.
  • But by the sword, my lord, 't must be deserved;3
  • The king will ne'er forsake his flatterers.60
Sir J.
  • My lords of England, sith th' ungentle king
  • Of France refuseth to give aid of arms
  • Edition: current; Page: [191]
  • To this distressèd queen his sister here,
  • Go you with her to Hainault; doubt ye not,
  • We will find comfort, money, men and friends
  • Ere long, to bid the English king a base.1
  • How say, young prince? what think you of the match?
  • I think King Edward will outrun us all.
  • Nay, son, not so; and you must not discourage
  • Your friends, that are so forward in your aid.70
  • Sir John of Hainault, pardon us, I pray;
  • These comforts that you give our woful queen
  • Bind us in kindness all at your command.
  • Yea, gentle brother; and the God of heaven
  • Prosper your happy motion, good Sir John.
Y. Mor.
  • This noble gentleman, forward in arms,
  • Was born, I see, to be our anchor-hold.
  • Sir John of Hainault, be it thy renown,
  • That England's queen, and nobles in distress,
  • Have been by thee restored and comforted.80
Sir J.
  • Madam, along, and you my lord[s], with me,
  • That England's peers may Hainault's welcome see.
  • [Exeunt.
Edition: current; Page: [192]


Enter1 the King, Arundel,2 the two Spencers, with others.

  • Thus after many threats of wrathful war,
  • Triumpheth England's Edward with his friends;
  • And triumph, Edward, with his friends uncontrolled!
  • My lord of Gloucester, do you hear the news?
Y. Spen.
  • What news, my lord?
  • Why, man, they say there is great execution
  • Done through the realm; my lord of Arundel,
  • You have the note, have you not?
  • From the Lieutenant of the Tower, my lord.
  • I pray let us see it. What have we there?10
  • Read it, Spencer.
  • [Spencer reads their names.
  • Why, so; they barked apace a month4 ago:
  • Now, on my life, they'll neither bark nor bite.
  • Now, sirs, the news from France? Gloucester, I trow,
  • The lords of France love England's gold so well,
  • As Isabella5 gets no aid from thence.
  • What now remains? have you proclaimed, my lord,
  • Reward for them can bring in Mortimer?
Edition: current; Page: [193]
Y. Spen.
  • My lord, we have; and if he be in England,
  • 'A will be had ere long, I doubt it not.20
  • If, dost thou say? Spencer, as true as death,
  • He is in England's ground; our portmasters
  • Are not so careless of their king's command.
  • Enter a Messenger.
  • How now, what news with thee? from whence come these?
  • Letters, my lord, and tidings forth of France,
  • To you, my lord of Gloucester, from Levune.
  • Read.

[Spencer reads the letter.]

“My duty to your honour premised, &c., I have, according to instructions in that behalf, dealt with the King of France his lords, and effected, that the queen, all discontented and discomforted, is gone. Whither, if you ask, with Sir John of Hainault, brother to the marquis, into Flanders with them are gone Lord Edmund, and the Lord Mortimer, having in their company divers of your nation, and others; and, as constant report goeth, they intend to give King Edward battle in England, sooner than he can look for them: this is all the news of import.

Your honour's in all service, Levune.36
  • Ah, villains! hath that Mortimer escaped?
  • With him is Edmund gone associate?
  • And will Sir John of Hainault lead the round?
  • Welcome, a God's name, madam, and your son;40
  • England shall welcome you and all your rout.
  • Gallop apace,1 bright Phoebus, through the sky,
  • Edition: current; Page: [194]
  • And dusky night, in rusty iron car,
  • Between you both shorten the time, I pray,
  • That I may see that most desirèd day,
  • When we may meet these traitors in the field.
  • Ah, nothing grieves me, but my little boy
  • Is thus misled to countenance their ills.
  • Come, friends, to Bristow, there to make us strong;
  • And, winds, as equal be to bring them in,50
  • As you injurious were to bear them forth!
  • [Exeunt.


Enter1 the Queen her Son, Kent, Mortimer, and Sir John Hainault.

  • Now, lords, our loving friends and countrymen,
  • Welcome to England all, with prosperous winds!
  • Our kindest friends in Belgia have we left,
  • To cope with friends at home; a heavy case
  • When force to force is knit, and sword and glaive
  • In civil broils make kin and countrymen
  • Slaughter themselves in others, and their sides
  • With their own weapons gored! But what's the help?
  • Misgoverned kings are cause of all this wreck;
  • And, Edward, thou art one among them all,10
  • Whose looseness hath betrayed thy land to spoil,
  • Who made the channel2 overflow with blood
  • Edition: current; Page: [195]
  • Of thine own people; patron shouldst thou be,
  • But thou——
Y. Mor.
  • Nay, madam, if you be a warrior,
  • You must not grow so passionate in speeches.
  • Lords,
  • Sith that we are by sufferance of heaven
  • Arrived, and armèd in this prince's right,
  • Here for our country's cause swear we to him20
  • All homage, fealty, and forwardness;
  • And for the open wrongs and injuries
  • Edward hath done to us, his queen and land,
  • We come in arms to wreak it with the sword;
  • That England's queen in peace may repossess
  • Her dignities and honours: and withal
  • We may remove these flatterers from the king,
Sir J.
  • Sound trumpets, my lord, and forward let us march.
  • Edward will think we come to flatter him.30
  • I would he never had been flattered more!
  • [Exeunt.


Enter1 the King, Baldock, and Young Spencer, flying about the stage.

Y. Spen.
  • Fly, fly, my lord! the queen is over-strong;
  • Her friends do multiply, and yours do fail.
  • Shape we our course to Ireland, there to breathe.
Edition: current; Page: [196]
  • What! was I born to fly and run away,
  • And leave the Mortimers conquerors behind?
  • Give me my horse, and let's re'nforce our troops:
  • And in this bed of honour die with fame.
  • O no, my lord, this princely resolution
  • Fits not the time; away! we are pursued.
  • [Exeunt.
  • Enter Kent alone, with his sword and target.
  • This way he fled, but I am come too late.10
  • Edward, alas! my heart relents for thee.
  • Proud traitor, Mortimer, why dost thou chase
  • Thy lawful king, thy sovereign, with thy sword?
  • Vild wretch! and why hast thou, of all unkind,
  • Borne arms against thy brother and thy king?
  • Rain showers of vengeance on my cursèd head,
  • Thou God, to whom in justice it belongs
  • To punish this unnatural revolt!
  • Edward, this Mortimer aims at thy life!
  • O fly him, then! but, Edmund, calm this rage,20
  • Dissemble, or thou diest; for Mortimer
  • And Isabel do kiss, while they conspire:
  • And yet she bears a face of love forsooth.
  • Fie on that love that hatcheth death and hate!
  • Edmund, away; Bristow to Longshanks' blood
  • Is false; be not found single for suspect:
  • Proud Mortimer pries near unto thy walks.
  • Enter the Queen, Mortimer, the Young Prince, and Sir John Hainault.
  • Successful1 battle gives the God of kings
  • Edition: current; Page: [197]
  • To them that fight in right, and fear his wrath.
  • Since then successfully we have prevailed,30
  • Thankèd be heaven's great architect, and you.
  • Ere farther we proceed, my noble lords,
  • We here create our well-belovèd son,
  • Of love and care unto his royal person,
  • Lord Warden of the realm, and sith the fates
  • Have made his father so infortunate,
  • Deal you, my lords, in this, my loving lords,
  • As to your wisdoms fittest seems in all.
  • Madam, without offence, if I may ask,
  • How will you deal with Edward in his fall?40
  • Tell me, good uncle, what Edward do you mean?
  • Nephew, your father: I dare not call him king.
  • My lord of Kent, what needs these questions?
  • 'Tis not in her controlment, nor in ours,
  • But as the realm and parliament shall please,
  • So shall your brother be disposèd of.—
  • I like not this relenting mood in Edmund.
  • Madam, 'tis good to look to him betimes.
  • [Aside to the Queen.
  • My lord, the Mayor of Bristow knows our mind.
Y. Mor.
  • Yea, madam, and they scape not easily50
  • That fled the field.
  • Baldock is with the king.
  • A goodly chancellor, is he not, my lord?
Sir J.
  • So are the Spencers, the father and the son.
  • This Edward is the ruin of the realm.
  • This, Edward, is the ruin, &c.
  • [To the Prince.”
  • Edition: current; Page: [198]
  • Enter Rice ap Howell, and the Mayor of Bristow, with the Elder Spencer prisoner.
  • God save Queen Isabel, and her princely son!
  • Madam, the mayor and citizens of Bristow,
  • In sign of love and duty to this presence,
  • Present by me this traitor to the state,
  • Spencer, the father to that wanton Spencer,
  • That, like the lawless Catiline of Rome,60
  • Revelled in England's wealth and treasury.
  • We thank you all.
Y. Mor.
  • Your loving care in this
  • Deserveth princely favours and rewards.
  • But where's the king and the other Spencer fled?
  • Spencer the son, created Earl of Gloucester,
  • Is with that smooth-tongued scholar Baldock gone,
  • And shipped but late for Ireland with the king.
Y. Mor.
  • Some whirlwind fetch them back or sink them all!
  • [Aside.
  • They shall be started thence, I doubt it not.
  • Shall I not see the king my father yet?70
  • Unhappy 's Edward, chased from England's bounds.
  • [Aside.
Sir J.
  • Madam, what resteth, why stand you in a muse?
  • I rue my lord's ill-fortune; but alas!
  • Care of my country called me to this war.
Edition: current; Page: [199]
Y. Mor.
  • Madam, have done with care and sad complaint;
  • Your king hath wronged your country and himself,
  • And we must seek to right it as we may.
  • Meanwhile, have hence this rebel to the block.
E. Spen.
  • Rebel is he that fights against the prince;
  • So fought not they that fought in Edward's right.80
Y. Mor.
  • Take him away, he prates; you, Rice ap Howell,
  • Shall do good service to her majesty,
  • Being of countenance in your country here,
  • To follow these rebellious runagates.
  • We in meanwhile, madam, must take advice,
  • How Baldock, Spencer, and their complices,
  • May in their fall be followed to their end.
  • [Exeunt omnes.


Enter1 the Abbot, Monks, Edward, Young Spencer, and Baldock.

  • Have you no doubt, my lord; have you no fear;
  • As silent and as careful we will be,
  • To keep your royal person safe with us,
  • Free from suspect, and fell invasion
  • Of such as have your majesty in chase,
  • Yourself, and those your chosen company,
  • As danger of this stormy time requires.
  • Father, thy face should harbour no deceit.
  • O! hadst thou ever been a king, thy heart,
  • Edition: current; Page: [200]
  • Pierced deeply with [a] sense of my distress,10
  • Could not but take compassion of my state.
  • Stately and proud, in riches and in train,
  • Whilom I was, powerful, and full of pomp:
  • But what is he whom rule and empery
  • Have not in life or death made miserable?
  • Come, Spencer; come, Baldock, come, sit down by me;
  • Make trial now of that1 philosophy,
  • That in our famous nurseries of arts
  • Thou suck'dst from Plato and from Aristotle.
  • Father, this life contemplative is heaven.20
  • O that I might this life in quiet lead!
  • But we, alas! are chased; and you, my friends,
  • Your lives and my dishonour they pursue.
  • Yet, gentle monks, for treasure, gold nor fee,
  • Do you betray us and our company.
  • Your grace may sit secure, if none but we
  • Do wot of your abode.
Y. Spen.
  • Not one alive, but shrewdly I suspect
  • A gloomy fellow in a mead below.
  • 'A gave a long look after us, my lord;30
  • And all the land I know is up in arms,
  • Arms that pursue our lives with deadly hate.
  • We were embarked for Ireland, wretched we!
  • With awkward winds and sore2 tempests driven
  • To fall on shore, and here to pine in fear
  • Of Mortimer and his confederates.
  • Mortimer! who talks of Mortimer?
  • Edition: current; Page: [201]
  • Who wounds me with the name of Mortimer,
  • That bloody man? Good father, on thy lap
  • Lay I this head, laden with mickle care.40
  • O might I never ope1 these eyes again!
  • Never again lift up this drooping head!
  • O never more lift up this dying heart!
Y. Spen.
  • Look up, my lord—Baldock. this drowsiness
  • Betides no good; here even we are betrayed.
  • Enter, with Welsh hooks, Rice ap Howell, a Mower, and the Earl of Leicester.
  • Upon my life, these be the men ye seek.
  • Fellow, enough.—My lord, I pray be short,
  • A fair commission warrants what we do.
  • The queen's commission, urged by Mortimer;
  • What cannot gallant Mortimer with the queen?50
  • Alas! see where he sits, and hopes unseen
  • To escape their hands that seek to reave his life.
  • Too true it is, Quem2 dies vidit veniens superbum,
  • Hunc dies vidit fugiens jacentem.
  • But, Leicester, leave to grow so passionate.
  • Spencer and Baldock, by no other names,
  • I [do] arrest you of high treason here.
  • Stand not on titles, but obey th' arrest;
  • 'Tis in the name of Isabel the queen.
  • My lord, why droop you thus?60
  • O day the last of all my bliss on earth!
  • Edition: current; Page: [202]
  • Centre of all misfortune! O my stars,
  • Why do you lour unkindly on a king?
  • Come[s] Leicester, then, in Isabella's name
  • To take my life, my company from me?
  • Here, man, rip up this panting breast of mine,
  • And take my heart in rescue of my friends!
  • Away with them!
Y. Spen.
  • It may become thee yet
  • To let us take our farewell of his grace.
  • My heart with pity earns1 to see this sight,70
  • A king to bear these words and proud commands.
  • Spencer, ah, sweet Spencer, thus then must we part?
Y. Spen.
  • We must, my lord, so will the angry heavens.
  • Nay, so will hell and cruel Mortimer;
  • The gentle heavens have not to do in this.
  • My lord, it is in vain to grieve or storm.
  • Here humbly of your grace we take our leaves;
  • Our lots are cast; I fear me, so is thine.
  • In heaven we may, in earth ne'er shall we meet:
  • And, Leicester, say, what shall become of us?80
  • Your majesty must go to Killingworth.
  • Must! it is somewhat hard, when kings must go.
  • Here is a litter ready for your grace,
  • That waits your pleasure, and the day grows old.
  • As good be gone, as stay and be benighted.
  • A litter hast thou? lay me in a hearse,
  • And to the gates of hell convey me hence;
  • Edition: current; Page: [203]
  • Let Pluto's bells ring out my fatal knell,
  • And hags howl for my death at Charon's shore,
  • For friends hath Edward none, but these and these:190
  • And these must die under a tyrant's sword.
  • My lord, be going; care not for these,
  • For we shall see them shorter by the heads.
  • Well, that shall be, shall be; part we must!
  • Sweet Spencer, gentle Baldock, part we must!
  • Hence feignèd weeds! unfeignèd are my woes;
  • [Casts off his disguise.
  • Father, farewell! Leicester, thou stay'st for me,
  • And go I must. Life, farewell, with my friends.
  • [Exeunt Edward and Leicester.
Y. Spen.
  • O! is he gone? is noble Edward gone?
  • Parted from hence? never to see us more?100
  • Rent, sphere of heaven! and, fire, forsake thy orb!
  • Earth, melt to air! gone is my sovereign,
  • Gone, gone, alas! never to make return.
  • Spencer, I see our souls are fleeting hence;
  • We are deprived the sunshine of our life:
  • Make for a new life, man; throw up thy eyes,
  • And heart and hands to heaven's immortal throne;
  • Pay nature's debt with cheerful countenance;
  • Reduce we all our lessons unto this,
  • Edition: current; Page: [204]
  • To die, sweet Spencer, therefore live we all;110
  • Spencer, all live to die, and rise to fall.
  • Come, come, keep these preachments till you come to the place appointed. You, and such as you are, have made wise work in England; will your lordships away?
  • Your Lordship, I trust, will remember me?
  • Remember thee? Fellow, what else? Follow
  • me to the town.
  • [Exeunt.
Edition: current; Page: [205]



Enter1 the King, Leicester, the Bishop of Winchester, and Trussel.

  • Be patient, good my lord, cease to lament,
  • Imagine Killingworth Castle were your court,
  • And that you lay for pleasure here a space,
  • Not of compulsion or necessity.
  • Leicester, if gentle words might comfort me,
  • Thy speeches long ago had eased my sorrows;
  • For kind and loving hast thou always been.
  • The griefs of private men are soon allayed,
  • But not of kings. The forest deer, being struck,
  • Runs to an herb2 that closeth up the wounds;10
  • Edition: current; Page: [206]
  • But, when the imperial lion's flesh is gored,
  • He rends and tears it with his wrathful paw,
  • [And] highly scorning that the lowly earth
  • Should drink his blood, mounts up to the air.
  • And so it fares with me, whose dauntless mind
  • The ambitious Mortimer would seek to curb,
  • And that unnatural queen, false Isabel,
  • That thus hath pent and mewed me in a prison;
  • For such outrageous passions cloy my soul,
  • As with the wings of rancour and disdain,20
  • Full oft[en] am I soaring up to heaven,
  • To plain me to the gods against them both.
  • But when I call to mind I am a king,
  • Methinks I should revenge me of my wrongs,
  • That Mortimer and Isabel have done.
  • But what are kings, when regiment1 is gone,
  • But perfect shadows in a sunshine day?
  • My nobles rule, I bear the name of king;
  • I wear the crown, but am controlled by them,
  • By Mortimer, and my unconstant queen,30
  • Who spots my nuptial bed with infamy;
  • Whilst I am lodged within this cave of care,
  • Where sorrow at my elbow still attends,
  • To company my heart with sad laments,
  • That bleeds within me for this strange exchange.
  • But tell me, must I now resign my crown,
  • To make usurping Mortimer a king?
  • Your grace mistakes; it is for England's good,
  • And princely Edward's right we crave the crown.
Edition: current; Page: [207]
  • No, 'tis for Mortimer, not Edward's head;40
  • For he's a lamb, encompassèd by wolves,
  • Which in a moment will abridge his life.
  • But if proud Mortimer do wear this crown,
  • Heavens turn it to a blaze of quenchless fire!1
  • Or like the snaky wreath of Tisiphon,
  • Engirt the temples of his hateful head;
  • So shall not England's vine2 “vines.” be perishèd,
  • But Edward's name survives,3 though Edward dies.
  • My lord, why waste you thus the time away?
  • They stay your answer; will you yield your crown?50
  • Ah, Leicester, weigh how hardly I can brook
  • To lose my crown and kingdom without cause;
  • To give ambitious Mortimer my right,
  • That like a mountain overwhelms my bliss,
  • In which extreme my mind here murdered is.
  • But what the heavens appoint, I must obey!
  • Here, take my crown; the life of Edward too;
  • [Taking off the crown.
  • Two kings in England cannot reign at once.
  • But stay awhile, let me be4 king till night,
  • That I may gaze upon this glittering crown;60
  • So shall my eyes receive their last content,
  • My head, the latest honour due to it,
  • And jointly both yield up their wishèd right.
  • Edition: current; Page: [208]
  • Continue ever thou celestial sun;
  • Let never silent night possess this clime:
  • Stand still you watches of the element;
  • All times and seasons, rest you at a stay,
  • That Edward may be still fair England's king!
  • But day's bright beam doth vanish fast away,
  • And needs I must resign my wishèd crown.70
  • Inhuman creatures! nursed with tiger's milk!
  • Why gape you for your sovereign's overthrow!
  • My diadem I mean, and guiltless life.
  • See, monsters, see, I'll wear my crown again!
  • [He puts on the crown.
  • What, fear you not the fury of your king?
  • But, hapless Edward, thou art fondly led;
  • They pass not for thy frowns as late they did,
  • But seek to make a new-elected king;
  • Which fills my mind with strange despairing thoughts,
  • Which thoughts are martyrèd with endless torments,80
  • And in this torment comfort find I none,
  • But that I feel the crown upon my head;
  • And therefore let me wear it yet awhile.
  • My lord, the parliament must have present news,
  • And therefore say, will you resign or no?
  • [The King rageth.
  • I'll not resign, but whilst I live1 [be king].
  • Traitors, be gone! and join you with Mortimer!
  • Elect, conspire, install, do what you will:—
  • Their blood and yours shall seal these treacheries!
Edition: current; Page: [209]
  • This answer we'll return, and so farewell.90
  • Call them again, my lord, and speak them fair:
  • For if they go, the prince shall lose his right.
  • Call thou them back, I have no power to speak.
  • My lord, the king is willing to resign.
  • If he be not, let him choose.
  • O would I might! but heavens and earth conspire
  • To make me miserable! Here receive my crown;
  • Receive it? no, these innocent hands of mine
  • Shall not be guilty of so foul a crime.
  • He of you all that most desires my blood,100
  • And will be called the murderer of a king,
  • Take it. What, are you moved? pity you me?
  • Then send for unrelenting Mortimer,
  • And Isabel, whose eyes, being turned to steel,
  • Will sooner sparkle fire than shed a tear.
  • Yet stay, for rather than I'll look on them,
  • Here, here!
  • [He gives them the crown
  • Now, sweet God of heaven,
  • Make me despise this transitory pomp,
  • And sit for aye enthronizèd in heaven!
  • Come, death, and with thy fingers close my eyes.110
  • Or if I live, let me forget myself.1
  • My lord.
  • Call me not lord; away—out of my sight:
  • Ah. pardon me: grief makes me lunauc!
  • Edition: current; Page: [210]
  • Let not that Mortimer protect my son;
  • More safety there is in a tiger's jaws,
  • Than his embracements—bear this to the queen,
  • Wet with my tears, and dried again with sighs;
  • [Gives a handkerchief.
  • If with the sight thereof she be not moved,
  • Return it back and dip it in my blood.120
  • Commend me to my son, and bid him rule
  • Better than I. Yet how have I trangressed,
  • Unless it be with too much clemency?
  • And thus most humbly do we take our leave
  • [Exeunt Bishop and Trussel
  • Farewell; I know the next news that they bring
  • Will be my death; and welcome shall it be;
  • To wretched men, death is felicity.
  • Enter Berkeley, who gives a paper to Leicester.
  • Another post! what news brings he?
  • Such news as I expect—come, Berkeley, come,
  • And tell thy message to my naked breast.130
  • My lord, think not a thought so villainous
  • Can harbour in a man of noble birth.
  • To do your highness service and devoir,
  • And save you from your foes, Berkeley would die.
  • My lord, the council of1 the queen commands
  • That I resign my charge.
  • And who must keep me now? Must you, my lord?
Edition: current; Page: [211]
  • Ay, my most gracious lord—so 'tis decreed.
  • [taking the paper.] By Mortimer, whose name is written here!
  • Well may I rent his name that rends my heart!140
  • [Tears it.
  • This poor revenge has something eased my mind.
  • So may his limbs be torn, as is this paper!
  • Hear me, immortal Jove, and grant it too!
  • Your grace must hence with me to Berkeley straight.
  • Whither you will, all places are alike,
  • And every earth is fit for bunal.
  • Favour him, my lord, as much as lieth in you.
  • Even so betide my soul as I use him.
  • Mine enemy hath pitied my estate,
  • And that's the cause that I am now removed.150
  • And thinks your grace that Berkeley will be cruel?
  • I know not; but of this am I assured,
  • That death ends all, and I can die but once.
  • Leicester, farewell!
  • Not yet, my lord; I'll bear you on your way.
  • [Exeunt omnes.


Enter1 Mortimer and Queen Isabel.

Y. Mor.
  • Fair Isabel, now have we our desire;
  • The proud corrupters of the light-brained king
  • Edition: current; Page: [212]
  • Have done their homage to the lofty gallows,
  • And he himself lies in captivity.
  • Be ruled by me, and we will rule the realm.
  • In any case take heed of childish fear,
  • For now we hold an old wolf1 by the ears,
  • That, if he slip, will seize upon us both,
  • And gripe the sorer, being grip'd himself.
  • Think therefore, madam, that [it] imports us2 much10
  • To erect your son with all the speed we may,
  • And that I be protector over him;
  • For our behoof, 'twill3 bear the greater sway
  • Whenas a king's name shall be under writ.
  • Sweet Mortimer, the life of Isabel,
  • Be thou persuaded that I love thee well,
  • And therefore, so the prince my son be safe,
  • Whom I esteem as dear as these mine eyes,
  • Conclude against his father what thou wilt,
  • And I myself will willingly subscribe.20
Y. Mor.
  • First would I hear news he were deposed,
  • And then let me alone to handle him.
  • Enter Messenger.
  • Letters! from whence?
  • From Killingworth, my lord.
  • How fares my lord the king?
  • In health, madam, but full of pensiveness.
  • Alas, poor soul, would I could ease his grief!
  • Edition: current; Page: [213]
  • Enter Winchester1 with the Crown.
  • Thanks, gentle Winchester. [To the Messenger.] Sirrah, be gone.
  • [Exit Messenger.
  • The king hath willingly resigned his crown.
  • O happy news! send for the prince, my son.
  • Further, or this letter2 was sealed, Lord Berkeley came,30
  • So that he now is gone from Killingworth;
  • And we have heard that Edmund laid a plot
  • To set his brother free; no more but so.
  • The Lord of Berkeley is so [as?] pitiful
  • Then let some other be his guardian.
Y. Mor.
  • Let me alone, here is the privy seal.
  • [Exit Winchester.
  • Who's there?—call hither Gurney and Matrevis.
  • To dash the heavy-headed Edmund's drift,
  • Berkeley shall be discharged, the king removed,40
  • And none but we shall know where he lieth.3
  • But, Mortimer, as long as he survives,
  • What safety rests for us, or for my son?
Y. Mor.
  • Speak, shall he presently be despatched and die?
Edition: current; Page: [214]
  • I would he were, so 'twere not by my means.
  • Enter Matrevis and Gurney.
Y. Mor.
  • Enough.—
  • Matrevis, write a letter presently
  • Unto the Lord of Berkeley from ourself
  • That he resign the king to thee and Gurney;
  • And when 'tis done, we will subscribe our name.50
  • It shall be done, my lord.
Y. Mor.
  • Gurney.
  • My lord.
Y. Mor.
  • As thou intend'st to rise by Mortimer,
  • Who now makes Fortune's wheel turn as he please,
  • Seek all the means thou canst to make him droop,
  • And neither give him kind word nor good look.
  • I warrant you, my lord.
Y. Mor.
  • And this above the rest: because we hear
  • That Edmund casts to work his liberty,
  • Remove him still from place to place by night,
  • Till at the last he come to Killingworth,60
  • And then from thence to Berkeley back again;
  • And by the way, to make him fret the more,
  • Speak curstly to him; and in any case
  • Let no man comfort him if he chance to weep,
  • But amplify his grief with bitter words.
  • Fear not, my lord, we'll do as you command.
Y. Mor.
  • So now away; post thitherwards amain.
  • Whither goes this letter? to my lord the king?
  • Commend me humbly to his majesty,
  • And tell him that I labour all in vain70
  • Edition: current; Page: [215]
  • To ease his grief, and work his liberty;
  • And bear him this as witness of my love. [Gives a ring.
  • I will, madam.
  • [Exeunt Matrevis and Gurney; manent Isabel and Mortimer.
  • Enter the Young Prince, and the Earl of Kent talking with him.
Y. Mor.
  • Finely dissembled? Do so still, sweet queen
  • Here comes the young prince with the Earl of Kent.
  • Something he whispers in his childish ears.
Y. Mor.
  • If he have such access unto the prince,
  • Our plots and stratagems will soon be dashed.
  • Use Edmund friendly as if all were well.
Y. Mor.
  • How fares my honourable lord of Kent?80
  • In health, sweet Mortimer: how fares your grace?
  • Well, if my lord your brother were enlarged.
  • I hear of late he hath deposed himself.
  • The more my grief.
Y. Mor.
  • And mine.
  • Ah, they do dissemble!
  • [Aside,
  • Sweet son, come hither, I must talk with thee.
Y. Mor.
  • You being his uncle, and the next of blood,
  • Do look to be protector o'er the prince.
  • Not I, my lord; who should protect the son.90
  • But she that gave him life? I mean the queen.
  • Mother, persuade me not to wear the crown
  • Let him be king—I am too young to reign.
Edition: current; Page: [216]
  • But be content, seeing 'tis1 his highness' pleasure.
  • Let me but see him first, and then I will.
  • Ay, do, sweet nephew.
  • Brother, you know it is impossible.
  • Why, is he dead?
  • No, God forbid.
  • I would those words proceeded from your heart.100
Y. Mor.
  • Inconstant Edmund, dost thou favour him,
  • That wast a cause of his imprisonment?
  • The more cause have I now to make amends
Y. Mor.
  • I tell thee, 'tis not meet that one so false
  • Should come about the person of a prince.
  • My lord, he hath betrayed the king his brother,
  • And therefore trust him not.
  • But he repents, and sorrows for it now.
  • Come, son, and go with this gentle lord and me
  • With you I will, but not with Mortimer.110
Y. Mor.
  • Why, youngling, 'sdain'st thou so of Mortimer?
  • Then I will carry thee by force away.
  • Help, uncle Kent, Mortimer will wrong me.
  • Brother Edmund, strive not; we are his friends;
  • Isabel is nearer than the Earl of Kent.
  • Sister, Edward is my charge, redeem him.
  • Edward is my son, and I will keep him.
Edition: current; Page: [217]
  • Mortimer shall know that he hath wrongèd me!—
  • Hence will I haste to Killingworth Castle,
  • And rescue aged Edward from his foes,120
  • To be revenged on Mortimer and thee.
  • [Aside. Exeunt omnes


Enter1 Matrevis and Gurney with the King.

  • My lord, be not pensive, we are your friends;
  • Men are ordained to live in misery,
  • Therefore come,—dalliance dangereth our lives.
  • Friends, whither must unhappy Edward go?
  • Will hateful Mortimer appoint no rest?
  • Must I be vexèd like the nightly bird,
  • Whose sight is loathsome to all wingèd fowls?
  • When will the fury of his mind assuage?
  • When will his heart be satisfied with blood?
  • If mine will serve, unbowel straight this breast,10
  • And give my heart to Isabel and him;
  • Not so, my liege, the queen hath given this charge
  • To keep your grace in safety;
  • Your passions make your dolours to increase.
  • This usage makes my misery to increase.
  • But can my air2 of life continue long
  • When all my senses are annoyed with stench?
  • Within a dungeon England's king is kept,
  • Where I am starved for want of sustenance.20
  • Edition: current; Page: [218]
  • My daily diet is heart-breaking sobs,
  • That almost rent the closet of my heart;
  • Thus lives old1 Edward not relieved by any,
  • And so must die, though pitièd by many.
  • O, water, gentle friends, to cool my thirst,
  • And clear my body from foul excrements!
  • Here's channel water, as your charge is given;
  • Sit down, for we'll be barbers to your grace.
  • Traitors, away! what, will you murder me,
  • Or choke your sovereign with puddle water?30
  • No;
  • But wash your face, and shave away your beard,
  • Lest you be known and so be rescuèd.
  • Why strive you thus? your labour is in vain?
  • The wren may strive against the lion's strength.
  • But all in vain: so vainly do I strive
  • To seek for mercy at a tyrant's hand.
  • [They wash him with puddle water, and shave his beard away.
  • Immortal powers! that knows the painful cares
  • That waits upon my poor distressèd soul!
  • Edition: current; Page: [219]
  • O level all your looks upon these daring men,40
  • That wrongs their liege and sovereign, England's king.
  • O Gaveston, 'tis for thee that I am wronged,
  • For me, both thou and both the Spencers died!
  • And for your sakes a thousand wrongs I'll take.
  • The Spencers' ghosts, wherever they remain,
  • Wish well to mine; then tush, for them I'll die.
  • 'Twixt theirs and yours shall be no enmity.
  • Come, come away; now put the torches out,
  • We'll enter in by darkness to Killingworth.
  • Enter Kent
  • Gur, How now, who comes there?50
  • Guard the king sure; it is the Earl of Kent
  • Enter Soldiers.
  • O gentle brother, help to rescue me!
  • Keep them asunder; thrust in the king.
  • Soldiers, let me but talk to him one word.
  • Lay hands upon the earl for his assault.
  • Lay down your weapons, traitors, yield the king.
  • Edmund, yield thou thyself, or thou shalt die.
  • Base villains, wherefore do you gripe me thus!
  • Bind him and so convey him to the court.
  • Where is the court but here? here is the king;60
  • And I will visit him; why stay you me?
  • The court is where Lord Mortimer remains;
  • Thither shall your honour go; and so farewell.
  • [Exeunt Matrevis and Gurney, with the King. Kent and the Soldiers remain.
Edition: current; Page: [220]
  • O miserable is that commonweal,
  • Where lords keeps courts, and kings are locked in prison
  • Wherefore stay we? on, sirs, to the court.
  • Ay, lead me whither you will, even to my death,
  • Seeing that my brother cannot be released
  • [Exeunt


Enter1 Young Mortimer.

Y. Mor.
  • The king must die, or Mortimer goes down
  • The commons now begin to pity him.
  • Yet he that is the cause of Edward's death,
  • Is sure to pay for it when his son's of age;
  • And therefore will I do it cunningly.
  • This letter, written by a friend of ours,
  • Contains his death, yet bids them save his life.
  • [Reads
  • Edwardum occidere nolite timers bonum est
  • Fear not to kill the king His good he dte
  • But read it thus, and that's another sense;10
  • Edwardum occidere nolite timere bonum est
  • Kill not the king 'tis good to fear the worst.
  • Unpointed as it is, thus shall it go,
  • That, being dead, if it chance to be found,
  • Matrevis and the rest may bear the blame,
  • And we be quit that caused it to be done.
  • Within this room is locked the messenger,
  • Edition: current; Page: [221]
  • That shall convey it, and perform the rest;
  • And by a secret token that he bears,
  • Shall he be murdered when the deed is done.—20
  • Lightborn, come forth!
  • Enter Lightborn.
  • Art-thou so resolute as thou wast?
  • What else, my lord? and far more resolute.
Y. Mor.
  • And hast thou cast how to accomplish it?
  • Ay, ay, and none shall know which way he died
Y. Mor.
  • But at his looks, Lightborn, thou wilt relent.
  • Relent! ha, ha! I use much to relent,
Y. Mor.
  • Well, do it bravely, and be secret.
  • You shall not need to give instructions:
  • Tis not the first time I have killed a man.30
  • Iliearned in Naples how to poison flowers;
  • To strangle with a lawn thrust through1 the throat.
  • To pierce the windpipe with the needle's point,
  • Or whilst one is asleep, to take a quill
  • And blow a little powder his ears:
  • Or open his mouth and pour quicksilver down.
  • And yet I have a braver way than these,
Y. Mor.
  • What's that?
  • Nay, you shall pardon me, none shall know my tricks.
Y Mor.
  • I care not how it is, so it be not spied.40
  • Deliver this to Gurney and Matrevis.
  • At every ten mile end thou hast a horse.
  • Take this, away, and never see me more.
Edition: current; Page: [222]
  • No!
Y. Mor.
  • No;
  • Unless thou bring me news of Edward's death.
  • Light That will I quickly do; farewell, my lord.
  • [Exit
Y. Mor.
  • The prince I rule, the queen do I command,
  • And with a lowly conge to the ground,
  • The proudest lords salute me as I pass:50
  • I seal, I cancel, I do what I will;
  • Feared am I more than loved-let me be feared;
  • And when I frown, make all the court look pale.
  • I view the prince with Aristarchus' eyes,
  • Whose looks were as a breeching to a boy.
  • They thrust upon me the protectorship,
  • And sue to me for that that I desire.
  • While at the council-table, grave enough,
  • And not unlike a bashful puritan,
  • First I complain of imbecility,00
  • Saying it is onus quam gravissimum,
  • Till being interrupted by my friends,
  • Suscepi that provinaam as they term it;
  • And to conclude, I am Protector now.
  • Now is all sure, the queen and Mortimer
  • Shall rule the realm, the king; and none rules us.
  • Mine enemies will I plague, my friends advance;
  • And what I list command who dare control?
  • Major sum quam cui possit fortuna nocerc1
  • And that this be the coronation-day,70
  • Edition: current; Page: [223]
  • It pleaseth me, and Isabel the queen.
  • [Trumpets within.
  • The trumpets sound, I must go take my place.
  • Enter1 the Young King, Archbishop, Champion, Nobles, Queen.
  • Long live King Edward, by the grace of God,
  • King of England, and Lord of Ireland'
  • If any Christian, Heathen, Turk, or Jew,
  • Dare but affirm that Edward's not true king,
  • And will avouch his saying with the sword,
  • I am the champion that will combat with him.
Y. Mor.
  • None comes, sound trumpets.
  • Champion, here's to thee.
  • [Gives a purse.
  • Lord Mortimer, now take him to your charge.80
  • Enter Soldiers, with the Earl of Kent prisoner.
Y. Mor.
  • What traitor have we there with blades and bills?
  • Edmund, the Earl of Kent
  • What hath he done?
  • A would have taken the king away perforce.
  • As we were bringing him to Killingworth.
Y, Mor.
  • Did you attempt his rescue, Edmund? speak
  • Mortimer, I did; he is our king,
  • And thou compell'st this prince to wear the crown.2
Edition: current; Page: [224]
Y. Mor.
  • Strike off his head, he shall have martial law.
  • Strike off my head! base traitor, I defy thee.
  • King. My lord, he is my uncle, and shall live.90
Y. Mor.
  • My lord, he is your enemy, and shall die.
  • Stay, villains!
  • Sweet mother, if I cannot pardon him,
  • Entreat my Lord Protector for his life.
  • Queen, Son, be content; I dare not speak a word.
  • Nor I, and yet methinks I should command,
  • But, seeing I cannot, I'll entreat for him,—
  • My lord, if you will let my uncle live,
  • I will requite it when I come to age.
Y. Mor.
  • 'Tis for your highness' good, and for the realm's—100
  • How often shall I bid you bear him hence?
  • Kent Art thou king? must I die at thy command?
Y. Mor.
  • At our command! once more away with him.
  • Let me but stay and speak; I will not go.
  • Either my brother or his son is king.
  • And none of both them thirst for Edmund's blood.
  • And therefore, soldiers, whither will you hale me?
  • [They hale Kent away, and carry him to be beheaaed.
  • What safety may I look for at his hands,
  • If that my uncle shall be murdered thus?110
  • Fear not, sweet boy, I'll guard thee from thy foes;
  • Had Edmund lived, he would have sought thy death.
  • Come, son, we'll ride a hunting in the park.
Edition: current; Page: [225]
  • And shall my uncle Edmund ride with us?
  • He is a traitor; think not on him; come.
  • [Exeunt omnes.


Enter1 Matrevis and Gurney.

  • Gurney, I wonder the king dies not,
  • Being in a vault up to the knees in water,
  • To which the channels of the castle run,
  • From whence a damp continually ariseth,
  • That were enough to poison any man,
  • Much more a king brought up so tenderly.
  • And so do I, Matrevis: yesternight
  • I opened but the door to throw him meat,
  • He hath a body able to endure10
  • More than we can inflict: and therefore now
  • Let us assail his mind another while.
  • Send for him out thence, and I will anger him.
  • But stay, who's this?
  • Enter Lightborn.
  • My Lord Protector greets you.
  • What's here? I know not how to construe it.
  • Gurney, it was left unpointed for the nonce;
  • Edwardum occidere nolite timere,
  • That's his meaning.18
  • Know ye this token? I must have the king.
  • Ay, stay awhile, thou shalt have answer straight.
  • Edition: current; Page: [226]
  • This villain's sent to make away the king.
  • [Aside.
  • I thought as much.
  • [Aside.
  • And when the murder's done,
  • See how he must be handled for his labour.
  • Pereat iste! Let him have the king.
  • [Aside
  • What else? here is the keys, this is the lake,1
  • Do as you are commanded by my lord.
  • I know what I must do; get you away.
  • Yet be not far off, I shall need your help;
  • See that in the next room I have a fire,
  • And get me a spit, and let it be red-hot.30
  • Very well.
  • Need you anything besides?
  • What else? A table and a feather-bed.
  • That's all?
  • Ay, ay; so, when I call you, bring
  • It in.
  • Fear not thou that.
  • Here's a light,
  • To go into the dungeon.
  • [Gives light, and exit with Matrevis.
  • So2 now
  • Must I about this gear;3 ne'er was there any
  • So finely handled as this king shall be.
  • Foh, here's a place indeed, with all my heart!
  • Who's there? what light is that? wherefore com'st thou?
Edition: current; Page: [227]
  • To comfort you, and bring you joyful news.40
  • Small comfort finds poor Edward in thy looks.
  • Villain, I know thou com'st to murder me.
  • To murder you, my most gracious lord!
  • Far is it from my heart to do you harm.
  • The queen sent me to see how you were used,
  • For she relents at this your misery:
  • And what eyes can refrain from shedding tears,
  • To see a king in this most piteous state?
  • Weep'st thou already? list awhile to me.
  • And then thy heart, were it as Gurney's is,50
  • Or as Matrevis', hewn from the Caucasus,
  • Yet will it melt, ere I have done my tale.
  • This dungeon where they keep me is the sink
  • Wherein the filth of all the castle falls.
  • O villains!
  • And there in mire and puddle have I stood
  • This ten days' space; and, lest that I should sleep,
  • One plays continually upon a drum.
  • They give me bread and water, being a king;
  • So that, for want of sleep and sustenance,60
  • My mind's distempered, and my body's numbed,
  • And whether I have limbs or no I know not.
  • O, would my blood dropped out from every vein,
  • As doth this water from my tattered1 robes.
  • Tell Isabel, the queen, I looked not thus,
  • When for her sake I ran at tilt in France,
  • And there unhorsed the Duke of Cleremont.
Edition: current; Page: [228]
  • O speak no more, my lord! this breaks my heart.
  • Lie on this bed,1 and rest yourself awhile.
  • These looks of thine can harbour nought but death:70
  • I see my tragedy written in thy brows.
  • Yet stay; awhile forbear thy bloody hand,
  • And let me see the stroke before it comes,
  • That2 even then when I shall lose my life,
  • My mind may be more steadfast on my God.
  • What means your highness to mistrust me thus?
  • What mean'st thou to dissemble with me thus?
  • These hands were never stained with innocent blood,
  • Nor shall they now be tainted with a king's.79
  • Forgive my thought3 for having such a thought.
  • One jewel have I left; receive thou this. [Giving jewel
  • Still fear I, and I know not what's the cause,
  • But every joint shakes as I give it thee.
  • O, if thou harbour'st murder in thy heart,
  • Let this gift change thy mind, and save thy soul!
  • Know that I am a king: O! at that name
  • I feel a hell of grief; where is my crown?
  • Gone, gone; and do I remain alive?4
Edition: current; Page: [229]
  • You're overwatched, my lord; lie down and rest.
  • But that grief keeps me waking, I should sleep;90
  • For not these ten days have these eyes' lids1 closed.
  • Now as I speak they fall, and yet with fear
  • Open again. O wherefore sitt'st thou here?
  • If you mistrust me, I'll begone, my lord.
  • No, no, for if thou mean'st to murder me,
  • Thou wilt return again, and therefore stay.
  • [Sleeps.
  • He sleeps.
  • [awakes]. O let me not die yet;2 stay, O stay a while!
  • How now, my lord?
  • Something still buzzeth in mine ears,100
  • And tells me if I sleep I never wake;
  • This fear is that which makes me tremble thus.
  • To rid thee of thy life.—Matrevis, come!
  • Enter Matrevis and Gurney.
  • I am too weak and feeble to resist:
  • Assist me, sweet God, and receive my soul.
  • Run for the table.
  • O spare me, or despatch me in a trice.
Edition: current; Page: [230]
  • So, lay the table down, and stamp on it,
  • But not too hard, lest that you bruise his body.110
  • [King Edward is murdered.
  • I fear me that this cry will raise the town,
  • And therefore, let us take horse and away.
  • Tell me, sirs, was it not bravely done?
  • Excellent well: take this for thy reward.
  • [Gurney stabs Lightborn.
  • Come, let us cast the body in the moat,
  • And bear the king's to Mortimer our lord:
  • Away!
  • [Exeunt with the bodies.


Enter1 Mortimer and Matrevis.

Y. Mor.
  • Is't done, Matrevis, and the murderer dead?
  • Ay, my good lord; I would it were undone.
Y. Mor.
  • Matrevis, if thou now2 growest penitent
  • I'll be thy ghostly father; therefore choose,
  • Whether thou wilt be secret in this,
  • Or else die by the hand of Mortimer.
  • Gurney, my lord, is fled, and will, I fear,
  • Betray us both, therefore let me fly.
Y. Mor.
  • Fly to the savages.
  • I humbly thank your honour.10
Y. Mor.
  • As for myself, I stand as Jove's huge tree;
  • And others are but shrubs compared to me.
  • Edition: current; Page: [231]
  • All tremble at my name, and I fear none;
  • Let's see who dare impeach me for his death.
  • Enter the Queen.
  • Ah, Mortimer, the king my son hath news
  • His father's dead, and we have murdered him.
Y. Mor.
  • What if he have? the king is yet a child.
  • Queen. Ay,1 but he tears his hair, and wrings his hands,
  • And vows to be revenged upon us both.
  • Into the council-chamber he is gone,20
  • To crave the aid and succour of his peers.
  • Ay me! see where he comes, and they with him;
  • Now, Mortimer, begins our tragedy.
  • Enter the King, with the Lords.
  • First2 Lord. Fear not, my lord, know that you are a king.
  • Villain!
Y. Mor.
  • Ho,3 now, my lord!
  • Think not that I am frighted with thy words!
  • My father's murdered through thy treachery;
  • And thou shalt die, and on his mournful hearse
  • Thy hateful and accursèd head shall he,30
  • To witness to the world, that by thy means
  • His kingly body was too soon interred.
  • Weep not, sweet son!
  • Forbid me not to weep, he was my father;
  • Edition: current; Page: [232]
  • And, had you loved him half so well as I,
  • You could not bear his death thus patiently.
  • But you, I fear, conspired with Mortimer.
  • First1 Lord. Why speak you not unto my lord the king?
Y. Mor.
  • Because I think scorn to be accused.
  • Who is the man dares say I murdered him?40
  • Traitor! in me my loving father speaks,
  • And plainly saith, 'twas thou that murder'dst him.
Y. Mor.
  • But has your grace no other proof than this?
  • Yes, if this be the hand of Mortimer.
Y. Mor.
  • False Gurney hath betrayed me and himself.
  • [Aside.
  • I feared as much; murder cannot be hid.
  • [Aside.
Y. Mor.
  • It is my hand; what gather you by this?
  • That thither thou didst send a murderer.
Y. Mor.
  • What murderer? Bring forth the man I sent.
  • Ah, Mortimer, thou knowest that he is slain;50
  • And so shalt thou be too. Why stays he here?
  • Bring him unto a hurdle, drag him forth;
  • Hang him, I say, and set his quarters up;
  • But bring his head back presently to me.
  • For my sake, sweet son, pity Mortimer.
Y. Mor.
  • Madam, entreat not, I will rather die,
  • Than sue for life unto a paltry boy.
  • Hence with the traitor! with the murderer!
Y. Mor.
  • Base Fortune, now I see, that in thy wheel
  • There is a point, to which when men aspire,60
  • Edition: current; Page: [233]
  • They tumble headlong down: that point I touched,
  • And, seeing there was no place to mount up higher,
  • Why should I grieve at my declining fall?
  • Farewell, fair queen; weep not for Mortimer,
  • That scorns the world, and, as a traveller,
  • Goes to discover countries yet unknown.
  • What! suffer you the traitor to delay?
  • [Mortimer is taken away.
  • As thou receivedest thy life from me,
  • Spill not the blood of gentle Mortimer.
  • This argues that you spilt my father's blood,70
  • Else would you not entreat for Mortimer.
  • I spill his blood? no.1
  • Ay, madam, you; for so the rumour runs.
  • That rumour is untrue; for loving thee,
  • Is this report raised on poor Isabel.
  • I do not think her so unnatural.
  • Second2 Lord. My lord, I fear me it will prove too true.
  • Mother, you are suspected for his death,
  • And therefore we commit you to the Tower
  • Till farther trial may be made thereof;80
  • If you be guilty, though I be your son,
  • Think not to find me slack or pitiful.
  • Nay, to my death, for too long have I lived,
  • Whenas my son thinks to abridge my days.
  • Away with her, her words enforce these tears,
  • And I shall pity her if she speak again.
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  • Shall I not mourn for my belovèd lord,
  • And with the rest accompany him to his1 grave?
  • Second2 Lord. Thus, madam, 'tis the king's will you shall hence.
  • He hath forgotten me; stay, I am his mother.
  • Second2 Lord. That boots not; therefore, gentle madam, go.91
  • Then come, sweet death, and rid me of this grief.
  • [Exit.
  • Re-enter a Lord, with the head of Mortimer.
  • My lord, here is the head of Mortimer.
  • Go fetch my father's hearse, where it shall he
  • And bring my funeral robes. Accursèd head,
  • Could I have ruled thee then, as I do now,
  • Thou had'st not hatched this monstrous treachery.
  • Here comes the hearse; help me to mourn, my lords.
  • Sweet father, here unto thy murdered ghost
  • I offer up this wicked traitor's head;100
  • And let these tears, distilling from mine eyes,
  • Be witness of my grief and innocency.
  • [Exeunt.
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Edition: current; Page: [236] Edition: current; Page: [237]

Of The Massacre at Paris there is only one early edition, an un-dated 8vo. (printed circ. 1596?) The title is:—

The Massacre at Paris With the death of the Duke of Guise. As it was plaide by the right honourable the Lord high Admirall his Servants. Written by Christopher Marlowe. At London Printed by E. A. for Edward White, dwelling neere the little North doore of S. Paules Church at the signe of the Gun.

Edition: current; Page: [238]


  • Charles the Ninth, King of France.

  • Duke of Anjou, his Brother, afterwards King Henry the Third.

  • King of Navarre.

  • Prince of Condè, his Cousin.

  • Duke of Guise,

  • Cardinal of Lorraine, Brothers.

  • Duke Dumaine, Brothers.

  • Son to the Duke of Guise, a Boy.

  • The Lord High Admiral.

  • Duke Joyeux.

  • Epernoun.

  • Pleshè.

  • Bartus.

  • Two Lords of Poland.

  • Gonzago.

  • Retes.

  • Mountsorrell.

  • Mugeroun.

  • Loreine, a Preacher.

  • Seroune.

  • Ramus.

  • Tælus.

  • Friar.

  • Surgeon.

  • English Agent.

  • Apothecary.

  • Cutpurse.

  • Captain of the Guard, Protestants, Schoolmasters, Soldiers Murderers, Attendants, &c.

  • Catherine, the Queen-Mother of France.

  • Margaret, her Daughter, wife to the king of Navarre

  • The Old Queen of Navarre.

  • Duchess of Guise.

  • Wife to Seroune.

  • Maid to the Duchess of Guise.

Edition: current; Page: [239]



Enter Charles,1 the French king, Catherine, the Queen-Mother; the King of Navarre; Margaret, Queen of Navarre; the Prince of Condè; the Lord High Admiral; the Old Queen of Navarre; with others.

  • Prince of Navarre, my honourable brother,
  • Prince Condè, and my good Lord Admiral,
  • I wish this union and religious league,
  • Knit in these hands, thus joined in nuptial rites,
  • May not dissolve till death dissolve our lives;
  • And that the native sparks of princely love,
  • That kindled first this motion in our hearts,
  • May still be fuelled in our progeny.
  • The many favours which your grace hath shown,
  • From time to time, but specially in this,10
  • Shall bind me ever to your highness' will,
  • In what Queen-Mother or your grace commands.
Edition: current; Page: [240]
  • Thanks, son Navarre. You see we love you well,
  • That link you in marriage with our daughter here;
  • And, as you know, our difference in religion
  • Might be a means to cross you in your love.—
  • Well, madam, let that rest.—
  • And now, my lords, the marriage rites performed,
  • We think it good to go and cònsummate
  • The rest with hearing of a holy mass.—20
  • Sister, I think yourself will bear us company.
  • I will, my good lord.
  • The rest that will not go, my lords, may stay.—
  • Come, mother,
  • Let us go to honour this solemnity.
  • Which I'll dissolve with blood and cruelty.
  • [Aside.
  • [Exeunt all except the King of Navarre, Condè, and the Admiral.
  • Prince Condè, and my good Lord Admiral,
  • Now Guise may storm, but do us little hurt,
  • Having the king, Queen-Mother on our sides,
  • To stop the malice of his envious heart,30
  • That seeks to murder all the Protestants.
  • Have you not heard of late how he decreed
  • (If that the king had given consent thereto)
  • That all the Protestants that are in Paris
  • My lord, I marvel that th' aspiring Guise Dares once adventure, without the king's consent,
  • To meddle or attempt such dangerous things.
Edition: current; Page: [241]
  • My lord, you need not marvel at the Guise,
  • For what he doth, the Pope will ratify,40
  • In murder, mischief, or in tyranny.
  • But he that sits and rules above the clouds
  • Doth hear and see the prayers of the just,
  • And will revenge the blood of innocents,
  • That Guise hath slain by treason of his heart,
  • And brought by murder to their timeless1 ends.
  • My lord, but did you mark the Cardinal,
  • The Guise's brother, and the Duke Dumaine,
  • How they did storm at these your nuptial rites,
  • Because the house of Bourbon now comes in,50
  • And joins your lineage to the crown of France?
  • And that's the cause that Guise so frowns at us.
  • And beats his brains to catch us in his trap,
  • Which he hath pitched within his deadly toil.
  • Come, my lords, let's go to the church, and pray
  • That God may still defend the right of France,
  • And make his Gospel flourish in this land.
  • Exeunt


Enter Guise.2

  • 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;
  • Edition: current; Page: [242]
  • 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.—
  • Apothecary!
  • Enter Apothecary
  • My lord?10
  • 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;21
  • 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
  • Soldier!
  • Enter a Soldier.
  • My lord?
  • Now come thou forth and play thy tragic part
  • Edition: current; Page: [243]
  • Stand in some window,1 opening near the street,
  • And when thou see'st the Admiral ride by,
  • Discharge thy musket, and perform his death;30
  • And then I'll guerdon thee with store of crowns.
  • I will, my lord.
  • [Exit.
  • 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?40
  • 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;
  • Edition: current; Page: [244]
  • For this I wait, that scorn attendance else;
  • For this, my quenchless thirst, whereon I build,
  • Hath often pleaded kindred to the king;50
  • 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;160
  • 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,70
  • If I repair not what he ruinates,2
  • 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.
  • Edition: current; Page: [245]
  • 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,80
  • Wherein are thirty thousand able men
  • Besides a thousand sturdy student Catholics:
  • And more,—of my knowledge, in one cloister keep1
  • 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.—90
  • Ay, but, Navarre,2—'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;100
  • A hand, that with a grasp may gripe the world;
  • Edition: current; Page: [246]
  • An ear to hear what my detractors say;
  • A royal seat, a sceptre, and a crown;
  • That those which do behold, they1 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.
  • [Exit.


Enter the King of Navarre,2 Queen Margaret, the Old Queen of Navarre, the Prince of Condè, and the Admiral; they are met by the Apothecary with the gloves, which he gives to the Old Queen.

  • Madam,
  • I beseech your grace to accept this simple gift.
Old Q. of Nav.
  • Thanks, my good friend. Hold, take thou this reward.
  • [Gives a purse.
  • I humbly thank your majesty.
  • [Exit.
Old Q. of Nav.
  • Methinks the gloves have a very strong perfume,
  • The scent whereof doth make my head to ache.
  • Doth not your grace know the man that gave them you?
Old Q. of Nav.
  • Not well; but do remember such a man.
  • Your grace was ill-advised to take them, then,
  • Considering of these dangerous times.10
Edition: current; Page: [247]
Old Q. of Nav.
  • Help, son Navarre! I am poisoned!
  • The heavens forbid your highness such mishap!
  • The late suspicion of the Duke of Guise
  • Might well have moved your highness to beware
  • How you did meddle with such dangerous gifts.
  • Too late it is, my lord, if that be true,
  • To blame her highness; but I hope it be
Old Q. of Nav.
  • O no, sweet Margaret! the fatal poison
  • Works within my head'; my brain-pan breaks;20
  • My heart doth faint; I die!
  • [Dies.
  • My mother poisoned here before my face!
  • O gracious God, what times are these!
  • O grant, sweet God, my days may end with hers,
  • That I with her may die and live again!
  • Let not this heavy chance, my dearest lord
  • (For whose effects my soul is massacrèd),
  • Infect thy gracious breast with fresh supply
  • To aggravate our sudden misery.
  • Come, my lords, let us bear her body hence,30
  • And see it honoured with just solemnity.
  • [As they are going out, the Soldier dischargeth his musket at the Admiral.
  • What, are you hurt, my Lord High Admiral?
  • Ay, my good lord, shot through the arm.
  • We1 are betrayed come, my lords,
  • And let us Go tell the king of this.”
Edition: current; Page: [248]
  • These are
  • The cursèd Guisians, that do seek our death.
  • O fatal was this marriage to us all!
  • [Exeunt, bearing out the body of the Old Queen of Navarre.


Enter1 King Charles, Catherine the Queen-Mother Guise, Anjou, and Dumaine.

  • My noble son, and princely Duke of Guise,
  • Now have we got the fatal, straggling deer
  • Within the compass of a deadly toil,
  • Madam, it will be noted through the world
  • An action bloody and tyrannical;
  • Chiefly, since under safety of our word
  • They justly challenge their protection:
  • Besides, my heart relents that noblemen,
  • Only corrupted in religion,10
  • Ladies of honour, knights, and gentlemen,
  • Should, for their conscience, taste such ruthless ends.
  • Though gentle minds should pity others' pam,
  • Yet will the wisest note their proper griefs,
  • And rather seek to scourge their enemies
  • Than be themselves base subjects to the whip.
  • Methinks my Lord Anjou hath well advised
  • Edition: current; Page: [249]
  • Your highness to consider of the thing,
  • And rather choose to seek your country's good.
  • Than pity or relieve these upstart heretics.20
  • I hope these reasons may serve my princely son
  • To have some care for fear of enemies.
  • Well, madam, I refer it to your majesty,
  • And to my nephew here, the Duke of Guise:
  • What you determine, I will ratify.
  • Thanks to my princely son.—Then tell me, Guise,
  • What order will you set down for the massacre?
  • Thus, madam. They
  • That shall be actors in this massacre,
  • Shall wear white crosses on their burgonets,30
  • And tie white linen scarfs about their arms:
  • He that wants these, and is suspect1 of heresy,
  • Shall die, be he king or emperor. Then I'll have
  • A peal of ordnance shot from the tower, at which
  • They all shall issue out, and set2 the streets;
  • And then,
  • The watch-word being given, a bell shall ring,
  • Which when they hear, they shall begin to kill,
  • And never cease until that bell shall cease;
  • Then breathe a while.40
  • Enter the Admiral'S Serving-Man.
  • How now, fellow! what news?
Edition: current; Page: [250]
  • An it please your grace, the Lord High Admiral,
  • Riding the streets, was traitorously shot;
  • And most humbly1 entreats your majesty
  • To visit him, sick in his bed.
  • Messenger, tell him I will see him straight.
  • [Exit Serv -M
  • What shall we do now with the Admiral?
  • Your majesty were best go visit him,
  • And make a show as if all were well.
  • Content; I will go visit the Admiral.50
  • And I will go take order for his death.
  • [Exeunt.2


The3 Admiral discovered in bed. Enter King Charles

  • How fares it with my Lord High Admiral?
  • Hath he been hurt with villains in the street?
  • I vow and swear, as I am king of France,
  • To find and to repay the man with death,
  • With death delayed and torments never us'd,
  • That durst presume, for hope of any gain,
  • To hurt the nobleman their4 sovereign loves.
Edition: current; Page: [251]
  • Ah, my good lord, these are the Guisians,
  • That seek to massacre our guiltless lives!
  • Assure yourself, my good Lord Admiral,10
  • I deeply sorrow for your treacherous wrong;
  • And that I am not more secure myself
  • Than I am careful you should be preserv'd.—
  • Cousin, take twenty of our strongest guard,
  • And, under your direction, see they keep
  • All treacherous violence from our noble friend.
  • Repaying all attempts with present death
  • Upon the cursèd breakers of our peace.—
  • And so be patient, good Lord Admiral,
  • And every hour I will visit you.20
  • I humbly thank your royal majesty.
  • [Exit Charles. The bed is drawn in


Enter1 Guise, Anjou, Dumaine, Gonzago, Retes, Mountsorrell, and Soldiers, to the massacre.

  • Anjou, Dumaine, Gonzago, Retes, swear,
  • By the argent crosses in your burgonets,
  • To kill all that you suspect of heresy.
  • I swear by this, to be unmerciful.
  • I am disguis'd, and none knows who I am,
  • And therefore mean to murder all I meet.
  • And so will I.
Edition: current; Page: [252]
  • And I.
  • Away, then! break into the Admiral's house.
  • Ay, let the Admiral be first despatch'd.
  • The Admiral,10
  • Chief standard-bearer to the Lutherans,
  • Shall in the entrance1 of this massacre
  • Be murder'd in his bed.
  • Gonzago, conduct them thither; and then
  • That charge is mine.—Switzers, keep you the streets;
  • And at each corner shall the king's guard stand.
  • Come, sirs, follow me.
  • [Exit Gonzago with others
  • Cousin, the captain of the Admiral's guard,
  • Plac'd by my brother, will betray his lord.20
  • Now, Guise, shall Catholics flourish once again;
  • The head being off, the members cannot stand.
  • But look, my lord, there's some in the Admiral's house.
  • Gonzago and others enter the Admiral'S House; The Admiral discovered in bed.
  • In lucky time: come, let us keep this lane,
  • And slay his servants that shall issue out.
  • Where is the Admiral?
  • O let me pray before I die!
Edition: current; Page: [253]
  • Then pray unto our Lady; kiss this cross
  • [Stabs him.
  • O God, forgive my sins!
  • [Dies
  • Gonzago, what, is he dead?
  • Ay, my lord.30
  • Then throw him down.1
  • [The body of the Admiral is thrown down.
  • Now, cousin, view him well:
  • It maybe 'tis some other, and he escap'd.
  • Cousin, 'tis he; I know him by his look
  • See where my soldier shot him through the arm;
  • He miss'd him near, but we have struck him now.—
  • Ah, base Chatillon and degenerate,
  • Chief Standard-bearer to the Lutherans,
  • Thus, in despite of thy religion,
  • The Duke of Guise stamps on thy lifeless bulk!
  • Away with him! cut off his head and hands,40
  • And send them for a present to the Pope,2
  • And, when this just revenge is finishèd,
  • Unto Mount Faucon3 will we drag his corse.
  • Edition: current; Page: [254]
  • And he, that living hated so the Cross,
  • Shall, being dead, be hanged thereon in chains.
  • Anjou, Gonzago, Retes, if that you three
  • Will be as resolute as I and Dumaine,
  • There shall not a Huguenot breathe in France.
  • I swear by this cross, we'll not be partial,
  • But slay as many as we can come near.50
  • Mountsorrell, go shoot the ordnance off,
  • That they, which have already set the street,
  • May know their watchword; then toll the bell,
  • And so let's forward to the massacre.
  • I will, my lord.
  • [Exit
  • And now, my lords, let's closely to our business
  • Anjou will follow thee.
  • And so will Dumaine.
  • [The ordnance being shot off, the bell tolls
  • Come, then, let's away.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter1 Guise and the rest with their swords drawn, chasing the Protestants.

  • Tuez, tuez, tuez!
  • Let none escape! murder the Huguenots!
  • Kill them! kill them!
  • [Exeunt
  • Enter Loreine running; Guise and the rest pursuing him.
  • Loreine, Loreine! follow Loreine!—Sirrah,
  • Are you a preacher of these heresies?
Edition: current; Page: [255]
  • I am a preacher of the word of God;
  • And thou a traitor to thy soul and him.
  • “Dearly belovèd brother,”—thus 'tis written
  • [Stabs Loreine, who dies.
  • Stay, my lord, let me begin the psalm.
  • Come, drag him away, and throw him in a ditch.
  • [Exeunt with the body.10


Enter1 Mountsorrell, and knocks at Seroune'S door.

Seroune's Wife [within].
  • Who is that which knocks there?
  • Mountsorrell, from the Duke of Guise.
Seroun's Wife [within].
  • Husband, come down, here's one would speak with you
  • From the Duke of Guise.
  • Enter Seroune from the house.
  • To speak with me, from such a man as he?
  • Ay, ay, for this, Seroune; and thou shalt ha't.
  • [Showing his dagger.
  • O, let me pray, before I take my death!
  • Despatch, then, quickly.
  • O Christ, my Saviour!
  • Christ, villain!
  • Why, darest thou presume to call on Christ,10
  • Edition: current; Page: [256]
  • Without the intercession of some saint?
  • Sanctus1 Jacobus, he's2 my saint; pray to him.
  • O let me pray unto my God!
  • Then take this with you.
  • [Stabs Seroune, who dies; and then exit


Enter Ramus, in his study.

  • What fearful cries come from the river Seine.3
  • That fright poor Ramus sitting at his book!
  • I fear the Guisians have pass'd the bridge,
  • And mean once more to menace me.
  • Enter Talæus.
  • Fly, Ramus, fly, if thou wilt save thy life!
  • Tell me, Talæus, wherefore should I fly?
  • The Guisians are
  • Hark at thy door, and mean to murder us:
  • Hark, hark, they come! I'll leap out at the window.
  • Sweet TalÆus, stay.10
  • Enter Gonzago and Retes.
  • Who goes there?
  • 'Tis TalÆus, Ramus' bedfellow.
  • What art thou?
  • I am, as Ramus is, a Christian.
  • O, let him go; he is a Catholic.
  • [Exit Talæus.
Edition: current; Page: [257]
  • Come, Ramus, more gold, or thou shalt have the stab.
  • Alas, I am a scholar! how should I have gold?
  • All that I have is but my stipend from the king,
  • Which is no sooner receiv'd but it is spent.
  • Enter Guise, Anjou, Dumaine, Mountsorrell, and Soldiers.
  • Who have you there?
  • 'Tis Ramus, the king's Professor of Logic.
  • Stab him.20
  • O, good my lord,
  • Wherein hath Ramus been so offensious?
  • Marry, sir, in having a smack in all,
  • And yet didst never sound anything to the depth.
  • Was it not thou that scoff'dst1 the Organon,
  • And said it was a heap of vanities?
  • He that will be a flat dichotomist,
  • And seen in nothing but epitomes,
  • Is in your judgment thought a learnèd man;
  • And he, forsooth, must go and preach in Germany,30
  • Excepting against doctors' axioms,2
  • And ipse dixi with this quiddity,
  • Argumentum testimonii est inartificiale.3
  • To contradict which, I say, Ramus shall die:
  • How answer you that? your nego argumentum
  • Cannot serve, sirrah.—Kill him.
  • “Argumentum testmonii est inartificiale.”
Edition: current; Page: [258]
  • O, good my lord, let me but speak a word!
  • Well, say on.
  • Not for my life do I desire this pause;
  • But in my latter hour to purge myself,40
  • In that I know the things that I have wrote,
  • Which, as I hear, one Scheckius1 takes it ill,
  • Because my places,2 being but three, contain all his.
  • I knew the Organon to be confus'd,
  • And I reduc'd it into better form:
  • And this for Aristotle will I say,
  • That he that despiseth him can ne'er
  • Be good in logic or philosophy;
  • And that's because the blockish Sorbonnists3
  • Attribute as much unto their [own] works50
  • As to the service of the eternal God.
  • Why suffer you that peasant to declaim?
  • Stab4 him, I say, and send him to his friends in hell.
  • Ne'er was there collier's5 son so full of pride.
  • [Stabs Ramus, who dies.
Edition: current; Page: [259]
  • My Lord of Anjou, there are a hundred Protestants
  • Which we have chased into the river Seine,1
  • That swim about, and so preserve their lives:
  • How may we do? I fear me they will live.
  • Go place some men upon the bridge,
  • With bows and darts, to shoot at them they see,60
  • And sink them in the river as they swim.
  • 'Tis well advis'd, Dumaine; go see it straight be done.
  • [Exit Dumaine.
  • And in the meantime, my lord, could we devise
  • To get those pedants from the King Navarre,
  • That are tutors to him and the Prince of Condè—
  • For that, let me alone: cousin, stay you here,
  • And when you see me in, then follow hard.2
  • Anjou knocketh at the door: and enter the King of Navarre and the Prince of Condè,3 with their two Schoolmasters.
  • How now, my lords! how fare you?
  • My lord, they say
  • That all the Protestants are massacred.
  • Ay, so they are; but yet, what remedy?70
  • I have done what I could to stay this broil.
  • But yet, my lord, the report doth run
  • That you were one that made this massacre.
Edition: current; Page: [260]
  • Who, I? you are deceiv'd; I rose but now.
  • [Guise and the others come forward1 from the back of the stage.
  • Murder the Huguenots! take those pedants hence!
  • Thou traitor, Guise, lay off thy bloody hands!
  • Come, let us go tell the king.
  • [Exit with the King of Navarre.
  • Come, sirs,
  • I'll whip you to death with my poniard's point.
  • [Stabs the Schoolmasters, who die.
  • Away with them both!
  • [Exeunt Anjou and Soldiers with the bodies.
  • And now, sirs, for this night let our fury stay.
  • Yet will we not that the massacre shall end:81
  • Gonzago, post you to Orleans,
  • Retes to Dieppe, Mountsorrell unto Rouen,
  • And spare not one that you suspect of heresy.
  • And now stay
  • That bell, that to the devil's matins rings.
  • Now every man put off his burgonet,
  • And so convey him closely to his bed.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter2 Anjou, with two Lords of Poland.

  • My lords of Poland, I must needs confess,
  • The offer of your Prince Elector's far
  • Edition: current; Page: [261]
  • Beyond the reach of my deserts;
  • For Poland is, as I have been inform'd,
  • A martial people, worthy such a king
  • As hath sufficient counsel in himself
  • To lighten doubts, and frustrate subtle foes;
  • And such a king, whom practice long hath taught
  • To please himself with manage of the wars,
  • The greatest wars within our Christian bounds,—10
  • I mean our wars against the Muscovites,
  • And, on the other side, against the Turk,
  • Rich princes both, and mighty emperors.
  • Yet, by my brother Charles, our King of France,
  • And by his grace's council, it is thought
  • That, if I undertake to wear the crown
  • Of Poland, it may prejudice their hope
  • Of my inheritance to the crown of France;
  • For, if th' Almighty take my brother hence,
  • By due descent the regal seat is mine.20
  • With Poland, therefore, must I covenant thus,—
  • That if, by death of Charles, the diadem
  • Of France be cast on me, then, with your leaves,
  • I may retire me to my native home.
  • If your commission serve to warrant this,
  • I thankfully shall undertake the charge
  • Of you and yours, and carefully maintain
  • The wealth and safety of your kingdom's right.
First Lord.
  • All this, and more, your highness shall command,
  • For Poland's crown and kingly diadem.30
  • Then, come, my lords, let's go.
  • [Exeunt.
Edition: current; Page: [262]


Enter1 two Men, with the Admiral'S body.

First Man.
  • Now, sirrah, what shall we do with the Admiral?
Sec. Man.
  • Why, let us burn him for an heretic.
First Man.
  • O no! his body will infect the fire, and the fire the air, and so we shall be poisoned with him.
Sec. Man.
  • What shall we do, then?
First Man.
  • Let's throw him into the river.
Sec. Man.
  • O, 'twill corrupt the water, and the water the fish, and the2 fish ourselves when we eat them!
First Man.
  • Then throw him into the ditch.10
Sec. Man.
  • No, no. To decide all doubts, be ruled by me: let's hang him here upon this tree.
First Man.
  • Agreed.
  • [They hang up the body on a tree, and then exeunt.
  • Enter Guise, Catherine the Queen-Mother, and the Cardinal Of Lorraine, with Attendants.
  • Now, madam, how like you our lusty Admiral?
  • Believe me, Guise, he becomes the place so well
  • As I could long ere this have wish'd him there.
  • But come,
  • Let's walk aside; the air's not very sweet.
  • No, by my faith, madam.—
  • Edition: current; Page: [263]
  • Sirs, take him away, and throw him in some ditch.20
  • The Attendants bear off the Admiral'S body.
  • And now, madam, as I understand,
  • There are a hundred Huguenots and more,
  • Which in the woods do hold their synagogue,
  • And daily meet about this time of day;
  • And thither will I, to put them to the sword.
  • Do so, sweet Guise; let us delay no time,
  • For, if these stragglers gather head again,
  • And disperse themselves throughout the realm of France,
  • It will be hard for us to work their deaths.
  • Be gone; delay no time, sweet Guise.
  • Madam,30
  • I go as whirlwinds rage before a storm.
  • [Exit.
  • My Lord of Lorraine, have you marked of late,
  • How Charles our son begins for to lament
  • For the late night's work which my Lord of Guise
  • Did make in Paris among the Huguenots?
  • Madam, I have heard him solemnly vow,
  • With the rebellious King of Navarre,
  • To revenge their deaths upon us all.
  • Ay, but, my lord, let me alone for that;
  • For Catherine must have her will in France.40
  • As I do live, so surely shall he die,
  • And Henry then shall wear the diadem;
  • And, if he grudge or cross his mother's will,
  • I'll disinherit him and all the rest;
  • For I'll rule France, but they shall wear the crown,
  • And, if they storm, I then may pull them down.
  • Come, my lord, let us go.
  • [Exeunt.
Edition: current; Page: [264]


Enter1 five or six Protestants, with books, and kneel together. Then enter Guise and others.

  • Down with the Huguenots! murder them!
First Pro.
  • O Monsieur de Guise, hear me but speak!
  • No, villain; that tongue of thine,
  • That hath blasphem'd the holy Church of Rome,
  • Shall drive no plaints into the Guise's ears,
  • To make the justice of my heart relent.—
  • Tuez, tuez, tuez! let none escape.
  • They kill the Protestants.
  • So, drag them away.
  • [Exeunt with the bodies.


Enter2 King Charles, supported by the King of Navarre and Epernoun; Catherine the Queen-Mother, the Cardinal of Lorraine, Pleshè,3 and Attendants.

  • O, let me stay, and rest me here awhile!
  • A griping pain hath seiz'd upon my heart;
  • A sudden pang, the messenger of death.
  • O, say not so! thou kill'st thy mother's heart.
  • I must say so; pain forceth me complain.
Edition: current; Page: [265]
  • Comfort yourself, my lord, and have no doubt
  • But God will sure restore you to your health.
  • O no, my loving brother of Navarre!
  • I have deserved a scourge, I must confess;
  • Yet is their1 patience of another sort10
  • Than to misdo the welfare of their king:
  • God grant my nearest friends may prove no worse!
  • O, hold me up, my sight begins to fail,
  • My sinews shrink, my brains turn upside down;
  • My heart doth break: I faint and die.
  • [Dies.
  • What, art thou dead, sweet son? speak to thy mother!
  • O no, his soul is fled from out his breast,
  • And he nor hears nor sees us what we do!
  • My lords, what resteth there now to be done,
  • But that we presently despatch ambassadors20
  • To Poland, to call Henry back again,
  • To wear his brother's crown and dignity?
  • Epernoun, go see it presently be done,
  • And bid him come without delay to us.
  • Madam, I will.
  • [Exit.
  • And now,
  • Edition: current; Page: [266]
  • My lords, after these funerals be done,
  • We will, with all the speed we can, provide
  • For Henry's coronation from Polony.
  • Come, let us take his body hence.30
  • The body of King Charles is borne out; and exeunt all except the King of Navarre and Pleshè.
  • And now, Pleshè,1 whilst that these broils do last,
  • My opportunity may serve it fit
  • To steal from France, and hie me to my home,
  • For there's no safety in this realm for me:
  • And now that Henry is call'd from Poland,
  • It is my due, by just succession;
  • And therefore, as speedily as I can perform,
  • I'll muster up an army secretly,
  • For fear that Guise, join'd with the King of Spain,
  • Might seek2 to cross me in mine enterprise.40
  • But God, that always doth defend the right,
  • Will show his mercy, and preserve us still.
  • The virtues of our true religion
  • Cannot but march, with many graces more,
  • Whose army shall discomfort all your foes,
  • And, at the length, in Pampelonia3 crown
  • (In spite of Spain, and all the popish power,
  • That holds it from your highness wrongfully)
  • Your majesty her rightful lord and sovereign.
Edition: current; Page: [267]
  • Truth, Pleshè; and God so prosper me in all,50
  • As I intend to labour for the truth,
  • And true profession of his holy word!
  • Come, Pleshè, let's away whilst time doth serve.
  • [Exeunt.


Trumpets sound within, and a cry of “Vive le Roi” two or three times. Enter1 Anjou crowned as King Henry the Third; Catherine the Queen-Mother, the Cardinal of Lorraine, Guise, Epernoun, Mugeroun, the Cutpurse, and others.

  • All. Vive le Roi, Vive le Roi!
  • [A flourish of trumpets.
  • Welcome from Poland, Henry, once again!
  • Welcome to France, thy father's royal seat!
  • Here hast thou a country void of fears,
  • A warlike people to maintain thy right,
  • A watchful senate for ordaining laws,
  • A loving mother to preserve thy state,
  • And all things that a king may wish besides;
  • And long may Henry enjoy all this, and more!10
  • Vive le Roi, Vive le Roi! [A flourish of trumpets.
  • Thanks to you all. The guider of all crowns
  • Grant that our deeds may well deserve your loves!
  • And so they shall if fortune speed my will,
  • And yield your thoughts to height of my deserts.
  • Edition: current; Page: [268]
  • What say our minions? think they Henry's heart
  • Will not both harbour love and majesty?
  • Put off that fear, they are already join'd:
  • No person, place, or time, or circumstance,
  • Shall slack my love's affection from his bent:20
  • As now you are, so shall you still persist,
  • Removeless from the favours of your king.
  • We know that noble minds change not their thoughts
  • For wearing of a crown, in that your grace
  • Hath worn the Poland diadem before
  • You were invested in the crown of France.
  • I tell thee, Mugeroun, we will be friends,
  • And fellows too, whatever storms arise.
  • Then1 may it please your majesty to give me leave
  • To punish those that do profane this holy feast.30
  • How mean'st thou that?
  • [Mugeroun cuts off the Cutpurse's ear, for cutting the gold buttons off his cloak.
  • O Lord, mine ear!
  • Come, sir, give me my buttons, and here's your ear.
  • Sirrah, take him away.
  • Hands off, good fellow; I will be his bail
  • For this offence.—Go, sirrah, work no more
  • Edition: current; Page: [269]
  • Till this our coronation day be past.—
  • And now,
  • Our solemn rites of coronation done,
  • What now remains but for a while to feast,40
  • And spend some days in barriers, tourney, tilt,
  • And like disports, such as do fit the court?
  • Let's go, my lords; our dinner stays for us.
  • [Exeunt all except Catherine the Queen-Mother and the Cardinal of Lorraine.
  • My Lord Cardinal of Lorraine, tell me,
  • How likes your grace my son's pleasantness?
  • His mind, you see, runs on his minions,
  • And all his heaven is to delight himself;
  • And, whilst he sleeps securely thus in ease,
  • Thy brother Guise and we may now provide
  • To plant ourselves with such authority50
  • As not a man may live without our leaves.
  • Then shall the Catholic faith of Rome
  • Flourish in France, and none deny the same.
  • Madam, as in secrecy I was told,
  • My brother Guise hath gather'd a power of men,
  • Which are,1 he saith, to kill the Puritans,
  • But 'tis the house of Bourbon that he means.
  • Now, madam, must you insinuate with the king,
  • And tell him that 'tis for his country's good,
  • And common profit of religion.60
  • Tush, man, let me alone with him,
  • To work the way to bring this thing to pass;
  • Edition: current; Page: [270]
  • And, if he do deny what I do say,
  • I'll despatch him with his brother presently,
  • And then shall Monsieur wear the diadem.
  • Tush, all shall die unless I have my will;
  • For, while she lives, Catherine will be queen.
  • Come, my lord,1 let us go seek the Guise,
  • And then determine of this enterprise.
  • [Exeunt


Enter2 the Duchess of Guise and her Maid.

Duch. of G.
  • Go fetch me pen and ink.—
  • I will, madam.
  • That I may write unto my dearest lord.
  • [Exit Maid
  • Sweet Mugeroun,3 'tis he that hath my heart,
  • And Guise usurps it 'cause I am his wife.
  • Fain would I find some means to speak with him,
  • But cannot, and therefore am enforced to write,
  • That he may come and meet me in some place,
  • Where we may one enjoy the other's sight.
  • Re-enter the Maid, with pen, ink, and paper.
  • So, set it down, and leave me to myself.
  • [Exit Maid. The Duchess writes.
  • Edition: current; Page: [271]
  • O, would to God, this quill that here doth write10
  • Had late been pluck'd from out fair Cupid's wing,
  • That it might print these lines within his heart!
  • Enter Guise.
  • What, all alone, my love? and writing too?
  • I prithee, say to whom thou writ'st.
  • To such
  • A one, my lord, as, when she reads my lines,
  • Will laugh, I fear me, at their good array.
  • I pray thee, let me see.
  • O no, my lord; a woman only must
  • Partake the secrets of my heart.
  • But, madam, I must see.20
  • [Seizes the paper.
  • Are these your secrets that no man must know!
  • O, pardon me, my lord!
  • Thou trothless and unjust! what lines are these?
  • Am I grown old, or is thy lust grown young?
  • Or hath my love been so obscured in thee,
  • That others need to comment on my text?
  • Is all my love forgot, which held thee dear,
  • Ay, dearer than the apple of mine eye?
  • Is Guise's glory but a cloudy mist,
  • In sight and judgment of thy lustful eye?30
  • Mort Dieu! were1 not the fruit within thy womb,
  • Of whose increase I set some longing hope,
  • Edition: current; Page: [272]
  • This wrathful hand should strike thee to the heart.
  • Hence, strumpet! hide thy head for shame;
  • And fly my presence if thou look to live!
  • [Exit Duchess.
  • O wicked sex, perjùrèd and unjust!
  • Now do I see that from the very first
  • Her eyes and looks sow'd seeds of perjury.
  • But villain, he, to whom these lines should go,
  • Shall buy her love even with his dearest blood.
  • [Exit.40


Enter1 the King of Navarre, Pleshè, Bartus, and train, with drums and trumpets.

  • My lords, sith in a quarrel just and right
  • We undertake to manage these our wars
  • Against the proud disturbers of the faith
  • (I mean the Guise, the Pope, and King of Spain,
  • Who set themselves to tread us under foot,
  • And rent our true religion from this land;
  • But for you know our quarrel is no more
  • But to defend2 their strange inventions,
  • Which they will put us to with sword and fire),
  • We must with resolute minds resolve to fight,10
  • In honour of our God, and country's good.
  • Edition: current; Page: [273]
  • Spain is the council-chamber of the Pope,
  • Spain is the place where he makes peace and war,
  • And Guise for Spain hath now incensed the king
  • To send his power to meet us in the field.
  • Then in this bloody brunt they may behold
  • The sole endeavour of your princely care,
  • To plant the true succession of the faith,
  • In spite of Spain and all his heresies.
  • The power of vengeance now encamps itself20
  • Upon the haughty mountains of my breast;
  • Plays with her gory colours of revenge,
  • Whom I respect as leaves of boasting green,
  • That change their colour when the winter comes,
  • When I shall vaunt as victor in revenge.
  • Enter a Messenger.
  • How now, sirrah! what news?
  • My lord, as by our scouts we understand,
  • A mighty army comes from France with speed;
  • Which are already mustered in the land,
  • And mean to meet your highness in the field.30
  • In God's name, let them come!
  • This is the Guise that hath incensed the king
  • To levy arms, and make these civil broils.
  • But canst thou tell who is their general?
  • Not yet, my lord, for thereon do they stay;
  • But, as report doth go, the Duke of Joyeux
  • Hath made great suit unto the king therefore.
  • It will not countervail his pains, I hope.
  • I would the Guise in his stead might have come!
  • Edition: current; Page: [274]
  • But he doth lurk within his drowsy couch,40
  • And makes his footstool on security:
  • So he be safe, he cares not what becomes
  • Of king or country; no, not for them both.
  • But come, my lords, let us away with speed,
  • And place ourselves in order for the fight.
  • [Exeunt


Enter1 King Henry, Guise, Epernoun, and Joyeux.

  • My sweet Joyeux, I make thee general
  • Of all my army, now in readiness
  • To march 'gainst the rebellious King Navarre;
  • At thy request I am content thou go,
  • Although my love to thee can hardly suffer['t],
  • Regarding still the danger of thy life.
  • Thanks to your majesty: and so, I take my leave
  • Farewell to my Lord of Guise, and Epernoun.
  • Health and hearty farewell to my Lord Joyeux.
  • [Exit Joyeux.
  • So kindly, cousin of Guise, you and your wife
  • Do both salute our lovely minions.
  • Remember you the letter, gentle sir,
  • Which your wife writ
  • To my dear minion, and her chosen friend?
  • [Makes horns at Guise.
Edition: current; Page: [275]
  • How now, my lord! faith, this is more than need.
  • Am I thus to be jested at and scorn'd?
  • 'Tis more than kingly or emperious:
  • And, sure, if all the proudest kings
  • In Christendom should bear me such derision,
  • They should know how I scorn'd them and their mocks.20
  • I love your minions! dote on them yourself;
  • I know none else but holds them in disgrace;
  • And here, by all the saints in heaven, I swear,
  • That villain for whom I bear this deep disgrace,
  • Even for your words that have incens'd me so,
  • Shall buy that strumpet's favour with his blood!
  • Whether he have dishonour'd me or no,
  • Par la mort de Dieu1 il mourra!
  • [Exit.
  • Believe me, this jest bites sore.
  • My lord, 'twere good to make them friends,30
  • For his oaths are seldom spent in vain.
  • Enter Mugeroun.
  • How now, Mugeroun! mett'st thou not the Guise at the door?
  • Not I, my lord; what if I had?
  • Marry, if thou hadst, thou mightst have had the stab,
  • For he hath solemnly sworn thy death.
  • I may be stabb'd, and live till he be dead:
  • But wherefore bears he me such deadly hate?
  • Because his wife bears thee such kindly love.
Edition: current; Page: [276]
  • If that be all, the next time that I meet her,
  • I'll make her shake off love with her heels.40
  • But which way is he gone? I'll go take1 a walk
  • On purpose from the court to meet with him.
  • [Exit.
  • I like not this. Come, Epernoun,
  • Let us go seek the duke, and make them friends.
  • [Exeunt.


Alarums within, and a cry-“The Duke Joyeux is slain.” Enter2 the King Of Navarre, Bartus, and train.

  • The duke is slain, and all his power dispers'd,
  • And we are graced with wreaths of victory.
  • Thus God, we see, doth ever guide the right,
  • To make his glory great upon the earth.
  • The terror of this happy victory,
  • I hope, will make the king surcease his hate,
  • And either never manage army more,
  • Or else employ them im some better cause.
  • How many noblemen have lost their lives
  • In prosecution of these cruel arms,10
  • Is ruth, and almost death, to call to mind.
  • But God we know will always put them down
  • That lift themselves against the perfect truth;
  • Which I'll maintain so long as life doth last,
  • Edition: current; Page: [277]
  • And with the Queen of England join my force
  • To beat the papal monarch from our lands,
  • And keep those rehcs from our countries' coasts.
  • Come, my lords; now that this storm is over-past,
  • Let us away with triumph to our tents.
  • [Exeunt.


Enter1 a Soldier

  • Sir, to you, sir, that dares make the duke a Edition: current; Page: [278] cuckold, and use a counterfeit key to his privy-chamber-door; and although you take out nothing but your own, yet you put in that which displeaseth him, and so forestall his market, and set up your standing where you should not; and whereas he is your landlord, you will take upon you to be his, and till the ground that he himself should occupy, which is his own free land; if it be not too free -there's the question; and though I come not to take possession (as I would I might!), yet I mean to keep you out; which I will, if this gear hold.11
  • Enter Mugeroun.
  • What, are ye come so soon? have at ye, sir!
  • [Shoots at Mugeroun and kills him.1
  • Edition: current; Page: [279]
  • Enter Guise and Attendants.
  • Guise. [Giving a purse]. Hold thee, tall soldier, take thee this, and fly.
  • [Exit Soldier.
  • Lie there, the king's delight, and Guise's scorn!
  • Revenge it, Henry, as thou list or dare;
  • I did it only in despite of thee.
  • [Attendants bear off Mugeroun'S body.
  • Enter King Henry and Epernoun.
  • My Lord of Guise, we understand
  • That you have gathered a power of men:
  • What your intent is yet we cannot learn,
  • But we presume it is not for our good.20
  • Why, I am no traitor to the crown of France,
  • What I have done, 'tis for the Gospel's sake.
  • Nay, for the Pope's sake, and thine own benefit
  • What peer in France but thou, aspiring Guise,
  • Durst be in arms without the king's consent?
  • I challenge thee for treason in the cause.
  • Ah, base Epernoun! were not his highness here,
  • Thou shouldst perceive the Duke of Guise is mov'd.
  • Be patient, Guise, and threat not Epernoun,
  • Lest thou perceive the king of France be mov'd.30
  • Why, I'm a prince of the Valois line,
  • Therefore an enemy to the Bourbonites;
  • I am a juror in the holy league,
  • And therefore hated of the Protestants:
  • What should I do but stand upon my guard?
  • And, being able, I'll keep an host in pay.
Edition: current; Page: [280]
  • Thou able to maintain an host in pay,
  • That liv'st by foreign exhibition!1
  • The Pope and King of Spain are thy good friends;
  • Else all France knows how poor a duke thou art.40
  • Ay, those are they that feed him with their gold
  • To countermand our will, and check our friends.
  • My lord, to speak more plainly, thus it is.
  • Being animated by religious zeal,
  • I mean to muster all the power I can,
  • To overthrow those factious2 Puritans:
  • And know, my lord, the Pope will sell his triple crown,
  • Ay, and the Catholic Philip, King of Spain,
  • Ere I shall want, will cause his Indians
  • To rip the golden bowels of America.50
  • Navarre, that cloaks them underneath his wings,
  • Shall feel the house of Lorraine is his foe.
  • Your highness needs not fear mine army's force;
  • 'Tis for your safety, and your enemies' wreck.
  • Guise, wear our crown, and be thou king of France,
  • And, as dictator, make or war or peace,
  • Whilst I cry placet, like a senator!
  • I cannot brook thy haughty insolence:
  • Dismiss thy camp, or else by our edict
  • Be thou proclaim'd a traitor throughout France.60
  • Edition: current; Page: [281]
  • Guise. The choice is hard; I must dissemble.-
  • [Aside.
  • My lord, in token of my true humility,
  • And simple meaning to your majesty,
  • I kiss your grace's hand, and take my leave,
  • Intending to dislodge my camp with speed.
  • Then farewell, Guise; the king and thou are friends.
  • [Exit Guise.
  • But trust him not, my lord; for, had your highness
  • Seen with what a pomp he enter'd Paris,
  • And how the citizens with gifts and shows
  • Did entertain him,70
  • And promised to be at his command-
  • Nay, they fear'd not to speak it in the streets,
  • That the Guise durst stand in arms against the king,
  • For not effecting of his holiness' will.
  • Did they of Paris entertain him so?
  • Then means he present treason to our state.
  • Well, let me alone.- Who's within there?
  • Enter an Attendant, with pen and ink.
  • Make a discharge of all my council straight,
  • And I'll subscribe my name, and seal it straight.-
  • [Attendant writes.
  • My head shall be my council; they are false;80
  • And, Eperoun, I will be rul'd by thee.
  • My lord,
  • I think, for safety of your royal person,
  • Edition: current; Page: [282]
  • It would be good the Guise were made away,
  • And so to quite1 your grace of all suspect.
  • First let us set our hand and seal to this,
  • And then I'll tell thee what I mean to do.—
  • [Writes.
  • So; convey this to the council presently.
  • [Exit Attendant.
  • And, Epernoun, though I seem mild and calm,
  • Think not but I am tragical within.90
  • I'll secretly convey me unto Blois;
  • For, now that Paris takes the Guise's part,
  • Here is no staying for the king of France,
  • Unless he mean to be betray'd and die:
  • But, as I live, so sure the Guise shall die.
  • [Exeunt


Enter2 the King Of Navarre, reading a letter, and Bartus.

  • My lord, I am advertisèd from France
  • That the Guise hath taken arms against the king,
  • And that Paris is revolted from his grace.
  • Then hath your grace fit opportunity
  • To show your love unto the king of France,
  • Offering him aid against his enemies,
  • Bartus, it shall be so: post, then, to France,
  • Edition: current; Page: [283]
  • And there salute his highness in our name;
  • Assure him all the aid we can provide10
  • Against the Guisians and their complices.
  • Bartus, be gone: commend me to his grace,
  • I will, my lord.
  • [Exit.
  • Pleshè!
  • Enter Pleshè.
  • My lord?
  • Pleshè, go muster up our men with speed,
  • And let them march away to France amain,
  • For we must aid the king against the Guise.
  • Begone, I say; 'tis time that we were there.20
  • I go, my lord.
  • [Exit.
  • That wicked Guise, I fear me much, will be
  • The ruin of that famous realm of France;
  • For his aspiring thoughts aim at the crown,
  • And1 takes his vantage on religion,
  • To plant the Pope and Popelings in the realm,
  • And bind it wholly to the see of Rome.
  • But, if that God do prosper mine attempts,
  • And send us safely to arrive in France,
  • We'll beat him back, and drive him to his death,30
  • That basely seeks the ruin of his realm.
  • [Exit.
Edition: current; Page: [284]


Enter1 the Captain of the Guard, and three Murderers.

  • Come on, sirs. What, are you resolutely bent,
  • Hating the life and honour of the Guise?
  • What, will you not fear, when you see him come?
First Murd.
  • Fear him, said you? tush, were he here,
  • we would kill him presently.
Sec. Murd.
  • O that his heart were leaping in my hand!
Third Murd.
  • But when will he come, that we may murder him?
  • Well, then, I see you are resolute.
First Murd.
  • Let us alone; I warrant you.
  • Then, sirs, take your standings within this chamber;10
  • For anon the Guise will come.
All three Murderers.
  • You will give us our money?
  • Ay, ay, fear not: stand close: so; be resolute.
  • [Exeunt Murderers.
  • Now falls the star whose influence governs France,
  • Whose light was deadly to the Protestants:
  • Now must he fall, and perish in his height.
  • Enter King Henry and Epernoun.
  • Now, captain of my guard, are these murderers ready?
  • They be, my good lord.
Edition: current; Page: [285]
  • But are they resolute, and armed to kill,
  • Hating the life and honour of the Guise?20
  • I warrant ye, my lord.
  • [Exit.
  • Then come, proud Guise, and here disgorge thy breast,
  • Surcharged with surfeit of ambitious thoughts;
  • Breathe out that life wherein my death was hid,
  • And end thy endless treasons with thy death.
  • [Knocking within.
Guise [within].
  • Holà, varlet, hè!—Epernoun, where is the king?
  • Mounted1 his royal cabinet.
Guise [within].
  • I prithee, tell him that the Guise is here.
  • An please your grace, the Duke of Guise doth crave
  • Access unto your highness.
  • Let him come in.—30
  • Come, Guise, and see thy traitorous guile outreach'd,
  • And perish in the pit thou mad'st for me.
  • Enter Guise.
  • Good morrow to your majesty.
  • Good morrow to my loving cousin of Guise:
  • How fares it this morning with your excellence?
  • I heard your majesty was scarcely pleased,
  • That in the court I bear so great a train.
  • They were to blame that said I was displeased;
  • Edition: current; Page: [286]
  • And you, good cousin, to imagine it.
  • 'Twere hard with me, if I should doubt my kin,40
  • Or be suspicious of my dearest friends.
  • Cousin, assure you I am resolute,
  • Whatsoever any whisper in mine ears,
  • Not to suspect disloyalty in thee:
  • And so, sweet coz, farewell.
  • [Exit with Epernoun.
  • So;
  • Now sues the king for favour to the Guise,
  • And all his minions stoop when I command:
  • Why, this 'tis to have an army in the field.
  • Now, by the holy sacrament, I swear,50
  • As ancient Romans o'er their captive lords,
  • So will I triumph o'er this wanton king;
  • And he shall follow my proud chariot's wheels.
  • Now do I but begin to look about,
  • And all my former time was spent in vain.
  • Hold, sword,
  • For in thee is the Duke of Guise's hope.
  • Re-enter Third Murderer.
  • Villain, why dost thou look so ghastly? speak.
Third Murd.
  • O, pardon me, my Lord of Guise!
  • Pardon thee! why, what hast thou done?60
Third Murd.
  • O my lord, I am one of them that is set to murder you!
  • To murder me, villain!
Third Murd.
  • Ay, my lord: the rest have ta'en their standings in the next room; therefore, good my lord, go not forth.
Edition: current; Page: [287]
  • Yet Cæsar shall go forth.
  • Let mean conceits and baser men fear death:
  • Tut, they are peasants; I am Duke of Guise;
  • And princes with their looks engender fear.70
First Murd.
  • [within] Stand close; he is coming; I know him by his voice.
  • As pale as ashes!1 nay, then, it is time
  • To look about.
  • Enter First and Second Murderers.
First and Sec. Murderers.
  • Down with him, down with him!
  • [They stab Guise.
  • O, I have my death's wound! give me leave to speak.
Sec. Murd.
  • Then pray to God, and ask forgiveness of the king.
  • Trouble me not; I ne'er offended him,
  • Nor will I ask forgiveness of the king.
  • O, that I have not power to stay my life,
  • Nor immortality to be revenged!80
  • To die by peasants, what a grief is this!
  • Ah, Sixtus, be reveng'd upon the king!
  • Philip and Parma, I am slain for you!
  • Pope, excommunicate, Philip, depose
  • The wicked branch of curs'd Valois his line!
  • Vive la messe! perish Huguenots!
  • Thus Cæsar did go forth, and thus he died.
  • [Dies.
  • Edition: current; Page: [288]
  • Enter the Captain of the Guard.
  • What, have you done?
  • Then stay a while, and I'll go call the king.
  • But see, where he comes.90
  • Enter King Henry, Epernoun, and Attendants.
  • My lord, see, where the Guise is slain.
  • Ah, this sweet sight is physic to my soul!
  • Go fetch his son for to behold his death.—
  • [Exit an Attendant
  • Surcharg'd with guilt of thousand massacres,
  • Monsieur of Lorraine, sink away to hell!
  • And, in remembrance of those bloody broils,
  • To which thou didst allure me, being alive,
  • And here, in presence of you all, I swear,
  • I ne'er was king of France until this hour.
  • This is the traitor that hath spent my gold100
  • In making foreign wars and civil broils.
  • Did he not draw a sort1 of English priests
  • From Douay to the seminary at Rheims,
  • To hatch forth treason 'gainst their natural queen?
  • Did he not cause the king of Spain's huge fleet
  • To threaten England, and to menace me?
  • Did he not injure Monsieur that's deceas'd?
  • Hath he not made me, in the Pope's defence,
  • To spend the treasure, that should strength my land,
  • In civil broils between Navarre and me?110
  • Edition: current; Page: [289]
  • Tush, to be short, he meant to make me monk,
  • Or else to murder me, and so be king.
  • Let Christian princes, that shall hear of this
  • (As all the world shall know our Guise is dead),
  • Rest satisfied with this, that here I swear,
  • My lord, here is his son.
  • Enter Guise's Son.
  • Boy, look where your father lies.
G.'s Son.
  • My father slain! who hath done this deed?
  • Sirrah, 'twas I that slew him; and will slay120
  • Thee too, an thou prove such a traitor.
G.'s Son.
  • Art thou king, and hast done this bloody deed?
  • I'll be reveng'd.
  • [Offers to throw his dagger.
  • Away to prison with him! I'll clip his wings
  • Or e'er he pass my hands. Away with him!
  • [Some of the Attendants bear off Guise's Son.
  • But what availeth that this traitor's dead,
  • When Duke Dumaine, his brother, is alive,
  • And that young cardinal that is grown so proud?
  • Go to the governor of Orleans,
  • And will1 him, in my name, to kill the duke.130
  • [To the Captain of the Guard.
  • Get you away, and strangle the cardinal.
  • [To the Murderers.
  • [Exeunt Captain of the Guard and Murderers.
  • Edition: current; Page: [290]
  • These two will make one entire Duke of Guise,
  • Especially with our old mother's help.
  • My lord, see, where she comes, as if she droop'd
  • To hear these news.
  • And let her droop, my heart is light enough.
  • Enter Catherine the Queen-Mother.
  • Mother, how like you this device of mine?
  • King! why, so thou wert before.
  • Pray God thou be a king now this is done!140
  • Nay, he was king, and countermanded me.
  • But now I will be king, and rule myself,
  • I cannot speak for grief.—When thou wast born.
  • I would that I had murdered thee, my son!
  • My son? thou art a changeling, not my son:
  • I curse thee, and exclaim thee miscreant,
  • Cry out, exclaim, howl till thy throat be hoarse!
  • The Guise is slain, and I rejoice therefore:150
  • And now will I to arms.—Come, Epernoun,
  • And let her grieve her heart out, if she will.
  • [Exit with Epernoun
  • Away! leave me alone to meditate.
  • [Exeunt Attendants.
  • Sweet Guise, would he had died, so thou wert here!
  • To whom shall I bewray my secrets now,
  • Or who will help to build religion?
  • The Protestants will glory and insult;
  • Edition: current; Page: [291]
  • Wicked Navarre will get the crown of France;
  • The Popedom cannot stand; all goes to wreck;
  • And all for thee, my Guise! What may I do?160
  • But sorrow seize upon my toiling soul!
  • For, since the Guise is dead, I will not live.
  • [Exit.


Enter1 two Murderers, dragging in the Cardinal.

  • Murder me not; I am a cardinal.
First Murd.
  • Wert thou the Pope thou might'st not scape from us.
  • What, will you file your hands with churchmen's blood?
Sec. Murd.
  • Shed your blood! O Lord, no! for we intend to strangle you.
  • Then there is no remedy, but I must die?
First Murd.
  • No remedy; therefore prepare yourself.
  • Yet lives my brother Duke Dumaine, and many mo,
  • To revenge our deaths upon that cursèd king;
  • Upon whose heart may all the Furies gripe,10
  • And with their paws drench his black soul in hell!
First Murd.
  • Yours, my Lord Cardinal, you should have said.—
  • [They strangle him.
  • So, pluck amain:
  • He is hard-hearted; therefore pull with violence.
  • Come, take him away.
  • [Exeunt with the body
Edition: current; Page: [292]


Enter1 Dumaine, reading a letter; with others.

  • My noble brother murder'd by the king!
  • O, what may I do for to revenge thy death?
  • The king's alone, it cannot satisfy.
  • Sweet Duke of Guise, our prop to lean upon,
  • Now thou art dead, here is no stay for us.
  • I am thy brother, and I'll revenge thy death,
  • And root Valois his line from forth of France;
  • And beat proud Bourbon to his native home,
  • That basely seeks to join with such a king,
  • Whose murderous thoughts will be his overthrow.10
  • He will'd the governor of Orleans, in his name,
  • That I with speed should have been put to death;
  • But that's prevented, for to end his life,
  • And2 all those traitors to the Church of Rome
  • That durst attempt to murder noble Guise.
  • Enter Friar.
  • My lord, I come to bring you news that your brother the Cardinal of Lorraine, by the king's consent, is lately strangled unto death.
  • My brother Cardinal slain, and I alive!
  • O words of power to kill a thousand men!—20
  • Come, let us away, and levy men;
  • 'Tis war that must assuage this tyrant's pride.
Edition: current; Page: [293]
  • My lord, hear me but speak.
  • I am a friar of the order of the Jacobins,
  • That for my conscience' sake will kill the king.
  • But what doth move thee, above the rest, to do the deed?
  • O my lord, I have been a great sinner in my days! and the deed is meritorious.
  • But how wilt thou get opportunity?30
  • Tush, my lord, let me alone for that.
  • Friar, come with me;
  • We will go talk more of this within.
  • [Exeunt.


Drums and Trumpets. Enter1 King Henry, the King Of Navarre, Epernoun, Bartus, Pleshè, Soldiers, and Attendants.

  • Brother of Navarre, I sorrow much
  • That ever I was prov'd your enemy,
  • And that the sweet and princely mind you bear
  • Was ever troubled with injurious wars.
  • I vow, as I am lawful king of France,
  • To recompense your reconcilèd love,
  • With all the honours and affections
  • That ever I vouchsaf'd my dearest friends.
  • It is enough if that Navarre may be
  • Esteemèd faithful to the king of France,10
  • Whose service he may still command till death.
Edition: current; Page: [294]
  • Thanks to my kingly brother of Navarre.
  • Then here we'll lie before Lutetia-walls,1
  • Girting this strumpet city with our siege,
  • Till, surfeiting with our afflicting arms,
  • She cast her hateful stomach to the earth
  • Enter a Messenger.
  • An it please your majesty, here is a friar of the order of the Jacobins, sent from the President of Paris, that craves access unto your grace.
  • Let him come in.
  • [Exit Mess.20
  • Enter Friar, with a letter.
  • I like not this friar's look:
  • 'Twere not amiss, my lord, if he were search'd.
  • Sweet Epernoun, our friars are holy men,
  • And will not offer violence to their king
  • For all the wealth and treasure of the world.—
  • Friar, thou dost acknowledge me thy king?
  • Ay, my good lord, and will die therein.
  • Then come thou near, and tell what news thou bring'st.
  • My lord,
  • The President of Paris greets your grace,30
  • And sends his duty by these speedy lines,
  • Humbly craving your gracious reply.
  • [Gives letter
Edition: current; Page: [295]
  • I'll read them, friar, and then I'll answer thee.
  • Sancte Jacobe,1 now have mercy upon me!
  • [Stabs the king with a knife, as he reads the letter; and then the king gets the knife, and kills him.
  • O my lord, let him live a while!
  • No, let the villain die, and feel in hell
  • Just torments for his treachery.
  • What, is your highness hurt?
  • Yes, Navarre; but not to death, I hope.
  • God shield your grace from such a sudden death!—40
  • Go call a surgeon hither straight. [Exit an Attendant.
  • What irreligious pagans' parts be these,
  • Of such as hold them of the holy church!
  • Take hence that damnèd villain from my sight.
  • [Attendants carry out the Friar's body.
  • Ah, had your highness let him live,
  • We might have punish'd him to his deserts!
  • Sweet Epernoun, all rebels under heaven
  • Shall take example by his2 punishment,
  • How they bear arms against their sovereign.—
  • Go call the English agent hither straight:50
  • [Exit an Attendant.
  • I'll send my sister England news of this,
  • And give her warning of her treacherous foes.
  • Edition: current; Page: [296]
  • Enter a Surgeon.
  • Pleaseth your grace to let the surgeon search your wound?
  • The wound, I warrant ye, is deep, my lord.—
  • Search, surgeon, and resolve me what thou see'st.
  • [The Surgeon searches the wound
  • Enter the English Agent.
  • Agent for England, send thy mistress word
  • What this detested Jacobin hath done.
  • Tell her, for all this, that I hope to live;
  • Which if I do, the papal monarch goes
  • To wreck, and antichristian kingdom falls:60
  • These bloody hands shall tear his triple crown,
  • And fire accursèd Rome about his ears;
  • I'll fire his crazèd buildings, and enforce
  • The papal towers to kiss the lowly1 earth.
  • Navarre, give me thy hand: I here do swear
  • To ruinate that wicked Church of Rome,
  • That hatcheth up such bloody practices;
  • And here protest eternal love to thee,
  • And to the Queen of England specially,
  • Whom God hath bless'd for hating papistry.70
  • These words revive my thoughts, and comfort me.
  • To see your highness in this virtuous mind.
Edition: current; Page: [297]
  • Tell me, surgeon, shall I live?
  • Alas, my lord, the wound is dangerous,
  • For you are stricken with a poison'd knife!
  • A poison'd knife! what, shall the French king die,
  • Wounded and poison'd both at once?
  • O, that
  • That damnèd villain were alive again,
  • That we might torture him with some new-found death
  • He died a death too good:80
  • The devil of hell torture his wicked soul!
  • Ah, curse him not, sith he is dead!—
  • O, the fatal poison works within my breast!—
  • Alas, my lord, your highness cannot live!
  • Surgeon, why say'st thou so? the king may live.
  • O no, Navarre! thou must be king of France,
  • Long may you live, and still be king of France!
  • Or else, die Epernoun!89
  • Sweet Epernoun, thy king must die.—My lords,
  • Fight in the quarrel of this valiant prince,
  • For he's your lawful king, and my next heir;
  • Valois's line ends in my tragedy.
  • Now let the house of Bourbon wear the crown;
  • And may it ne'er end in blood as mine hath done!—
  • Weep not, sweet Navarre, but revenge my death.—
  • Ah, Epernoun, is this thy love to me?
  • Henry, thy king, wipes off these childish tears,
  • And bids thee whet thy sword on Sixtus' bones,
  • That it may keenly slice the Catholics.100
  • Edition: current; Page: [298]
  • He loves me not [the most1] that sheds most tears,
  • But he that makes most lavish of his blood.
  • Fire Paris, where these treacherous rebels lurk.—
  • I die, Navarre: come bear me to my sepulchre.
  • Salute the Queen of England in my name,
  • And tell her Henry dies her faithful friend.
  • [Dies
  • Come, lords, take up the body of the king,
  • That we may see it honourably interr'd:
  • And then I vow so2 to revenge his death,
  • As Rome, and all those popish prelates there,110
  • Shall curse the time that e'er Navarre was king,
  • And ruled in France by Henry's fatal death.
  • [They march out, with the body of King Henry lying on four men's shoulders, with a dead march, drawing weapons on the ground.
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Edition: current; Page: [300]

Dido was published in 1594, with the following title —

The Tragedie of Dido Queene of Carthage Played by the Children of her Maiesties Chappell. Written by Christopher Marlowe and Thomas Nash, Gent.


Jupiter. Ascanius.
Gammed. Dido.
Venus. Anna.
Cupid. Achates.
Juno Ilioneus.
Mercurie, or Hermes. Iarbas.
Æneas. Sergestus.

At London, Printed, by the Widdowe Orwin, for Thomas Wooa-cocke, and are to be sold at his shop, in Paules Churchyeard, at the signe of the blacke Beare.

1594, 4to.

A copy of this edition is in the Bodleian Library; and I am indebted to my friend Mr. C. H Firth for kindly comparing Dyce's text with the text of the Bodleian copy.

Edition: current; Page: [301] Edition: current; Page: [302]


  • Jupiter.

  • Ganymede.

  • Hermes.

  • Cupid.

  • Juno.

  • Venus.

  • æneas.

  • Ascanius, his son.

  • Achates.

  • Ilioneus.

  • Cloanthus.

  • Sergestus.

  • Other Trojans.

  • Iarbas.

  • Carthaginian Lords.

  • Dido.

  • Anna, her sister.

  • Nurse.

Edition: current; Page: [303]




Here the curtains draw: there is discovered Jupiter dandling Ganymede upon his knee, and Hermes lying asleep.

  • Come, gentle Ganymede, and play with me;
  • I love thee well, say Juno what she will.
  • I am much better for your worthless love,
  • That will not shield me from her shrewish blows!
  • To-day, whenas I filled into your cups,
  • And held the cloth of pleasance whiles you drank,
  • She reached me such a rap for that I spilled,
  • As made the blood run down about mine ears.
  • What? dares she strike the darling of my thoughts?
  • By Saturn's soul, and this earth-threatening hair,110
  • That, shaken thrice, makes nature's buildings quake,
  • I vow, if she but once frown on thee more,
  • Edition: current; Page: [304]
  • To hang her, meteor-like, 'twixt heaven and earth,
  • And bind her, hand and foot, with golden cords,
  • As once I did for harming Hercules!
  • Might I but see that pretty sport a-foot,
  • O, how would I with Helen's brother laugh,
  • And bring the gods to wonder at the game!
  • Sweet Jupiter, if e'er I pleased thine eye,
  • Or seemèd fair, wall'd-in with eagle's wings,120
  • Grace my immortal beauty with this boon,
  • What is't, sweet wag, I should deny thy youth?
  • Whose face reflects such pleasure to mine eyes,
  • As I, exhaled with thy fire-darting beams,
  • Have oft driven back the horses of the Night,
  • Whenas they would have haled thee from my sight.
  • Sit on my knee, and call for thy content,
  • Control proud Fate, and cut the thread of Time:
  • Why, are not all the gods at thy command,30
  • And heaven and earth the bounds of thy delight?
  • Vulcan2 shall dance to make thee laughing-sport,
  • Edition: current; Page: [305]
  • And my nine daughters sing when thou art sad;
  • From Juno's bird I'll pluck her spotted pride,
  • To make thee fans wherewith to cool thy face;
  • And Venus' swans shall shed their silver down,
  • To sweeten out the slumbers of thy bed;
  • Hermes no more shall show the world his wings,
  • If that thy fancy in his feathers dwell,
  • But, as this one, I'll tear them all from him,40
  • [Plucks a feather from Hermes' wings.
  • Do thou but say, “their colour pleaseth me.”
  • Hold here, my little love; these linkèd gems,
  • [Gives jewels.
  • My Juno ware upon her marriage-day,
  • Put thou about thy neck, my own sweet heart,
  • And trick thy arms and shoulders with my theft.
  • I would have a jewel for mine ear,
  • And a fine brooch to put in[to] my hat,
  • And then I'll hug with you an hundred times.
  • And shall have, Ganymede, if thou wilt be my love.
  • Enter Venus.
  • Ay, this is it: you can sit toying there,50
  • And playing with that female wanton boy,
  • Whiles my Æneas wanders on the seas,
  • And rests a prey to every billow's pride.
  • Juno, false Juno, in her chariot's pomp,
  • Drawn through the heavens by steeds of Boreas' brood,
  • Made Hebe to direct her airy wheels
  • Edition: current; Page: [306]
  • Into the windy country of the clouds;
  • Where, finding Æolus entrenched with storms,
  • And guarded with a thousand grisly ghosts,
  • She humbly did beseech him for our bane,60
  • And charged him drown my son with all his train.
  • Then gan the winds break ope their brazen doors,
  • And all Æolia to be up in arms;
  • Poor Troy must now be sacked upon the sea,
  • And Neptune's waves be envious men of war;
  • Epeus' horse, to Ætna's hill transform'd,
  • Preparèd stands to wreck their wooden walls;
  • And Æolus, like Agamemnon, sounds
  • The surges, his fierce soldiers, to the spoil:
  • See how the night, Ulysses-like, comes forth,70
  • And intercepts the day, as Dolon erst!
  • Ay me! the stars supprised,1 like Rhesus' steeds,
  • Are drawn by darkness forth Astræus' tents.2
  • What shall I do to save thee, my sweet boy?
  • Whenas the waves do threat our crystal world,
  • And Proteus, raising hills of floods on high,
  • Intends, ere long, to sport him in the sky.3
  • False Jupiter, reward'st thou virtue so?
  • What, is not piety exempt from woe?
  • Then die, Æneas, in thine innocence,80
  • Since that religion hath no recompense.
  • Content thee, Cytherea, in thy care,
  • Edition: current; Page: [307]
  • Since thy Æneas' wandering fate is firm,1
  • Whose weary limbs shall shortly make repose
  • In those fair walls I promised him of yore.
  • But, first, in blood must his good fortune bud,
  • Before he be the lord of Turnus' town,
  • Or force her smile that hitherto hath frowned:
  • Three winters shall he with the Rutiles war,
  • And, in the end, subdue them with his sword;90
  • And full three summers likewise shall he waste
  • In managing those fierce barbarian minds;
  • Which once performed, poor Troy, so long suppressed,
  • From forth her ashes shall advance her head,
  • And flourish once again, that erst was dead.
  • But bright Ascanius, beauty's better work,
  • Who with the sun divides one radiant shape,
  • Shall build his throne amidst those starry towers
  • That earth-born Atlas, groaning, underprops:
  • No bounds, but heaven, shall bound his empery,100
  • Whose azured gates, enchasèd with his name,
  • Shall make the Morning haste her grey uprise,
  • To feed her eyes with his engraven fame.
  • Thus, in stout Hector's race, three hundred years2
  • The Roman sceptre royal shall remain,
  • Till that a princess-priest,3 conceived by Mars,
  • Edition: current; Page: [308]
  • Shall yield to dignity a double birth,
  • Who will eternish1 Troy in their attempts.
  • How may I credit these thy flattering terms,
  • When yet both sea and sands beset their ships,110
  • And Phœbus, as in Stygian pools, refrains
  • To taint his tresses in the Tyrrhene main?
  • I will take order for that presently.—
  • Hermes, awake! and haste to Neptune's realm,
  • Whereas the wind-god, warring now with fate,
  • Besiege[s] th' offspring of our kingly loins:
  • Charge him from me to turn his stormy powers,
  • And fetter them in Vulcan's sturdy brass,
  • That durst thus proudly wrong our kinsman's peace.
  • [Exit Hermes.
  • Venus, farewell: thy son shall be our care.—120
  • Come, Ganymede, we must about this gear.2
  • [Exeunt Jupiter and Ganymede.
  • Disquiet seas, lay down your swelling looks,
  • And court Æneas with your calmy cheer,
  • Whose beauteous burden well might make you proud,
  • Had not the heavens, conceiv'd with hell-born clouds,
  • Veil'd his resplendent glory from your view:
  • For my sake, pity him, Oceanus,
  • That erst-while issu'd from thy watery loins,
  • And had my being from thy bubbling froth.
  • Triton, I know, hath filled his trump with Troy,130
  • And therefore will take pity on his toil,
  • Edition: current; Page: [309]
  • And call both Thetis and Cymothoe1
  • To succour him in this extremity.
  • Enter æneas, Ascanius, Achates, and others.
  • What do I see? my son now come on shore?
  • Venus, how art thou compassed with content,
  • The while thine eyes attract their sought-for joys!
  • Great Jupiter, still honoured mayst thou be
  • For this so friendly aid in time of need!
  • Here in this bush disguisèd will I stand,
  • Whiles my Æneas spends himself in plaints,140
  • And heaven and earth with his unrest acquaints.
  • You sons of care, companions of my course,
  • Priam's misfortune follows us2 by sea,
  • And Helen's rape doth haunt us at the heels.
  • How many dangers have we overpass'd!
  • Both barking Scylla,3 and the sounding rocks,
  • The Cyclops' shelves, and grim Ceraunia's seat,
  • Have you o'ergone, and yet remain alive.
  • Pluck up your hearts, since Fate still rests our friend,
  • And changing heavens may those good days return,150
  • Which Pergama did vaunt in all her pride.
  • Brave prince of Troy, thou only art our god,
  • That by thy virtues free'st us from annoy,
  • And makes our hopes survive to coming4 joys:
  • Edition: current; Page: [310]
  • Do thou but smile, and cloudy heaven will clear,
  • Whose night and day descendeth from thy brows.
  • Though we be now in extreme misery,
  • And rest the map of weather-beaten woe,1
  • Yet shall the agèd sun shed forth his hair,2
  • To make us live unto our former heat,160
  • And every beast the forest doth send forth
  • Father, I faint; good father, give me meat.
  • Alas! sweet boy, thou must be still a while,
  • Till we have fire to dress the meat we killed!
  • Gentle Achates, reach the tinder-box,
  • That we may make a fire to warm us with,
  • And roast our new-found victuals on this shore.
  • See, what strange arts necessity finds out!
  • How near, my sweet Æneas, art thou driven!
  • [Aside.
  • Hold; take this candle, and go light a fire;171
  • You shall have leaves and windfall boughs enow,
  • Near to these woods, to roast your meat withal.—
  • Ascanius, go and dry thy drenchèd limbs,
  • Whiles I with my Achates rove abroad,
  • To know what coast the wind hath driven us on,
  • Or whether men or beasts inhabit it.
  • [Exeunt Ascanius and others.
  • The air is pleasant, and the soil most fit
  • For cities and society's supports;
  • Edition: current; Page: [311]
  • Yet much I marvel that I cannot find180
  • No steps of men imprinted in the earth.
  • Now is the time for me to play my part.—
  • [Aside.
  • Ho, young men! saw you, as you came,1
  • Any of all my sisters wandering here,
  • Having a quiver girded to her side,
  • And clothèd in a spotted leopard's skin?
  • I neither saw nor heard of any such.
  • But what may I, fair virgin, call your name,
  • Whose looks set forth no mortal form to view,
  • Nor speech bewrays aught human in thy birth?190
  • Thou art a goddess that delud'st our eyes,
  • And shrouds thy beauty in this borrow'd shape;
  • But whether thou the Sun's bright sister be,
  • Or one of chaste Diana's fellow-nymphs,
  • Live happy in the height of all content,
  • And lighten our extremes with this one boon,
  • As to instruct us under what good heaven
  • We breathe as now, and what this world is called
  • On which by tempests' fury we are cast:
  • Tell us, O, tell us, that are ignorant!200
  • And this right hand shall make thy altars crack
  • With mountain-heaps of milk-white sacrifice.
  • Such honour, stranger, do I not affect:
  • It is the use for Tyrian2 maids to wear
  • Their bow and quiver in this modest sort,
  • Edition: current; Page: [312]
  • And suit themselves in purple for the nonce,
  • That they may trip more lightly o'er the lawnds,1
  • And overtake the tuskèd boar in chase.
  • But for the land whereof thou dost inquire,
  • It is the Punic kingdom, rich and strong,210
  • Adjoining on Agenor's stately town,
  • The kingly seat of Southern Libya,
  • Whereas Sidonian Dido rules as queen.
  • But what are you that ask of me these things?
  • Whence may you come, or whither will you go?
  • Of Troy am I, Æneas is my name;
  • Who, driven by war from forth my native world,
  • Put sails to sea to seek out Italy;
  • And my divine descent from sceptred Jove:
  • With twice twelve Phrygian ships I plough'd the deep,220
  • And made that way my mother Venus led;
  • But of them all scarce seven do anchor safe,
  • And they so wrecked and weltered by the waves,
  • As every tide tilts 'twixt their oaken sides;
  • And all of them, unburdened of their load,
  • Are ballassèd with billows' watery weight.
  • But hapless I, God wot, poor and unknown,
  • Do trace these Libyan deserts, all despised,
  • Exiled forth Europe and wide Asia both,
  • And have not any coverture but heaven.230
  • Fortune hath favour'd thee, whate'er thou be,
  • Edition: current; Page: [313]
  • In sending thee unto this courteous coast.
  • A' God's name, on! and haste thee to the court,
  • Where Dido will receive ye with her smiles;
  • And for thy ships, which thou supposest lost,
  • Not one of them hath perish'd in the storm,
  • But are arrivèd safe, not far from hence:
  • And so I leave thee to thy fortune's lot,
  • Wishing good luck unto thy wandering steps.
  • [Exit.
  • Achates, 'tis my mother that is fled;240
  • I know her by the movings of her feet.—
  • Stay, gentle Venus, fly not from thy son!
  • Too cruel, why wilt thou forsake me thus,
  • Or in these shades1 deceiv'st mine eyes so oft?
  • Why talk we not together hand in hand,
  • And tell our griefs in more familiar terms?
  • But thou art gone, and leav'st me here alone,
  • To dull the air with my discoursive moan.


Enter2 Iarbas, followed by Ilioneus, Cloanthus,3, Sergestus, and others.

  • Follow, ye Trojans, follow this brave lord,
  • And plain to him the sum of your distress.
  • Why, what are you, or wherefore do you sue?
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  • Wretches1 of Troy, envied of the winds,
  • That crave such favour at your honour's feet
  • As poor distressèd misery may plead:
  • Save, save, O, save our ships from cruel fire,
  • That do complain the wounds of thousand waves,
  • And spare our lives, whom every spite pursues!
  • We come not, we, to wrong your Libyan gods,10
  • Or steal your household Lares from their shrines;
  • Our hands are not prepared to lawless spoil,
  • Nor armèd to offend in any kind;
  • Such force is far from our unweapon'd thoughts
  • Whose fading weal, of victory forsook,
  • Forbids all hope to harbour near our hearts.
  • But tell me, Trojans, Trojans if you be,
  • Unto what fruitful quarters were ye bound,
  • Before that Boreas buckled with2 your sails?
  • There is a place, Hesperia termed by us,20
  • An ancient empire, famousèd for arms,
  • And fertile in fair Ceres' furrowed wealth,
  • Which now we call Italia, of his name
  • That in such peace long time did rule the same.
  • Thither made we;
  • When, suddenly, gloomy Orion rose,
  • And led our ships into the shallow sands,
  • Whereas the southern wind with brackish breath
  • Dispersed them all amongst the wreckful rocks:
  • Edition: current; Page: [315]
  • From thence a few of us escaped to land;30
  • The rest, we fear, are folded in the floods.
  • Brave men-at-arms, abandon fruitless fears,
  • Since Carthage knows to entertain distress.
  • Ay, but the barbarous sort do threat our ships,
  • And will not let us lodge upon the sands;
  • In multitudes they swarm unto the shore,
  • Myself will see they shall not trouble ye:
  • Your men and you shall banquet in our court,
  • And every Trojan be as welcome here40
  • As Jupiter to silly Baucis'1 house.
  • Come in with me; I'll bring ye to my queen,
  • Thanks, gentle lord, for such unlook'd-for grace:
  • Might we but once more see Æneas' face,
  • Then would we hope to quite such friendly turns,
  • As shall2 surpass the wonder of our speech.
  • [Exeunt.
Edition: current; Page: [316]



Enter1 æneas, Achates, Ascanius, and others.

  • Where am I now? these should be Carthage-walls.
  • Why stands my sweet Æneas thus amaz'd?
  • O my Achates, Theban Niobe,
  • Who for her sons' death wept out life and breath,
  • And, dry with grief, was turned into a stone,
  • Had not such passions in her head as I!
  • Methinks,
  • That town there should be Troy, yon Ida's hill,
  • There Xanthus' stream, because here's Priamus;
  • And when I know it is not, then I die.10
  • And in this humour is Achates too;
  • I cannot choose but fall upon my knees,
  • And kiss his hand. O, where is Hecuba?
  • Here she was wont to sit; but, saving air,
  • Is nothing here; and what is this but stone?2
  • O, yet this stone doth make Æneas weep!
  • And would my prayers (as Pygmalion's did)
  • Could give it life, that under his conduct
  • Edition: current; Page: [317]
  • We might sail back to Troy, and be revenged
  • On these hard-hearted Grecians which rejoice20
  • That nothing now is left of Priamus!
  • O, Priamus is left, and this is he!
  • Come, come aboard; pursue the hateful Greeks,
  • What means Æneas?
  • Achates, though mine eyes say this is stone,
  • Yet thinks my mind that this is Priamus;
  • And when my grievèd heart sighs and says no,
  • Then would it leap out to give Priam life.—
  • O, were I not at all, so thou mightst be,—
  • Achates, see, King Priam wags his hand!30
  • He is alive; Troy is not overcome!
  • Thy mind, Æneas, that would have it so,
  • Deludes thy eye-sight; Priamus is dead.
  • Ah, Troy is sack'd, and Priamus is dead!
  • And why should poor Æneas be alive?
  • Sweet father, leave to weep; this is not he,
  • For, were it Priam, he would smile on me.
  • Æneas, see, here come the citizens:
  • Leave to lament, lest they laugh at our fears.1
  • Enter Cloanthus, Sergestus, Ilioneus, and others.
  • Lords of this town, or whatsoever style40
  • Belongs unto your name, vouchsafe of ruth
  • To tell us who inhabits this fair town,
  • What kind of people, and who governs them;
  • For we are strangers driven on this shore,
  • And scarcely know within what clime we are.
Edition: current; Page: [318]
  • I hear Æneas' voice, but see him not,1
  • For none of these can be our general.
  • Like Ilioneus speaks this nobleman,
  • But Ilioneus goes not in such robes.
  • You are Achates, or I [am] deceiv'd.50
  • Æneas, see, Sergestus, or his ghost!
  • He names2 Æneas; let us kiss his feet.
  • It is our captain; see Ascanius!
  • Live long Æneas and Ascanius!
  • Achates, speak, for I am overjoyed.
  • O Ilioneus, art thou yet alive?
  • Blest be the time I see Achates' face!
  • Why turns Æneas from his trusty friends?
  • Sergestus, Ilioneus, and the rest,
  • Your sight amazed me. O, what destinies60
  • Have brought my sweet companions in such
  • plight?
  • O, tell me, for I long to be resolved!
  • Lovely Æneas, these are Carthage-walls;
  • And here Queen Dido wears th' imperial crown,
  • Who for Troy's sake hath entertained us all,
  • And clad us in these wealthy robes we wear.
  • Oft hath she asked us under whom we served;
  • And, when we told her, she would weep for grief,
  • Thinking the sea had swallowed up thy ships;
  • And, now she sees thee, how will she rejoice!70
Edition: current; Page: [319]
  • See, where her servitors pass through the hall,1
  • Bearing a banquet: Dido is not far.
  • Look, where she comes; Æneas, view2 her well.
  • Well may I view her; but she sees not me.
  • Enter Dido, Anna, Iarbas, and train.
  • What stranger art thou, that dost eye me thus?
  • Sometime I was a Trojan, mighty queen;
  • But Troy is not:—what shall I say I am?
  • Renowmèd Dido, 'tis our general,
  • Warlike Æneas.
  • Warlike Æneas, and in these base robes!80
  • Go fetch the garment which Sichæus ware.—
  • [Exit an Attendant, who brings in the garment, which æneas puts on.
  • Brave prince, welcome to Carthage and to me,
  • Both happy that Æneas is our guest.
  • Sit in this chair, and banquet with a queen:
  • Æneas is Æneas, were he clad
  • This is no seat for one that's comfortless;
  • May it please your grace to let Æneas wait;
  • For though my birth be great, my fortune's mean,
  • Too mean to be companion to a queen.90
  • Thy fortune may be greater than thy birth:
  • Sit down, Æneas, sit in Dido's place;
  • Edition: current; Page: [320]
  • And, if this be thy son, as I suppose,
  • Here let him sit.—Be merry, lovely child.
  • This place beseems me not; O, pardon me!
  • I'll have it so; Æneas, be content.
  • Madam, you shall be my mother.
  • And so I will, sweet child.—Be merry, man:
  • Here's to thy better fortune and good stars.
  • [Drinks.
  • In all humility, I thank your grace.100
  • Remember who thou art; speak like thyself.
  • Humility belongs to common grooms.
  • And who so miserable as Æneas is?
  • Lies it in Dido's hands to make thee blest?
  • Then be assur'd thou art not miserable.
  • O Priamus, O Troy, O Hecuba!
  • May I entreat thee to discourse at large,
  • And truly too, how Troy was overcome?
  • For many tales go of that city's fall,
  • And scarcely do agree upon one point:110
  • Some say Antenor did betray the town;
  • Others report 'twas Sinon's perjury;
  • But all in this, that Troy is overcome,
  • A woful tale bids Dido to unfold,
  • Whose memory, like pale Death's stony mace,
  • Beats forth my senses from this troubled soul,
  • And makes Æneas sink at Dido's feet.
  • What, faints Æneas to remember Troy,
  • In whose defence he fought so valiantly?120
  • Look up, and speak.
  • Then speak, Æneas, with Achilles' tongue:
  • Edition: current; Page: [321]
  • And, Dido, and you Carthaginian peers,
  • Hear me; but yet with Myrmidons' harsh ears,
  • Daily inured to broils and massacres,
  • Lest you be mov'd too much with my sad tale.
  • The Grecian soldiers, tir'd with ten years' war,
  • Began to cry, “Let us unto our ships,
  • Troy is invincible, why stay we here?”
  • With whose outcries Atrides being appalled130
  • Summon'd the captains to his princely tent;
  • Who, looking on the scars we Trojans gave,
  • Seeing the number of their men decreas'd,
  • And the remainder weak and out of heart,
  • Gave up their voices to dislodge the camp,
  • And so in troops all marched to Tenedos;1
  • Where when they came, Ulysses on the sand
  • Assayed with honey words to turn them back;
  • And, as he spoke, to further his intent,
  • The winds did drive huge billows to the shore,140
  • And heaven was darkened with tempestuous clouds;
  • Then he alleg'd the gods would have them stay,
  • Edition: current; Page: [322]
  • And prophesied Troy should be overcome:
  • And therewithal he call'd false Sinon forth,
  • A man compact of craft and perjury,
  • Whose ticing tongue was made of Hermes' pipe,
  • To force an hundred watchful eyes to sleep;
  • And him, Epeus having made the horse,
  • With sacrificing wreaths upon his head,
  • Ulysses sent to our unhappy town;150
  • Who, grovelling in the mire of Xanthus' banks,
  • His hands bound at his back, and both his eyes
  • Turned up to heaven, as one resolved to die,
  • Our Phrygian shepherd[s] haled within the gates,
  • And brought unto the court of Priamus;
  • To whom he used action so pitiful,
  • Looks so remorseful, vows so forcible,
  • As therewithal the old man overcome,
  • Kissed him, embraced him, and unloosed his bands;
  • And then—O Dido, pardon me!160
  • Nay, leave not here; resolve me of the rest.
  • O, th' enchanting words of that base slave
  • Made him to think Epeus' pine-tree horse
  • A sacrifice t' appease Minerva's wrath!
  • The rather, for that one Laocoon,
  • Breaking a spear upon his hollow breast,
  • Was with two wingèd serpents stung to death.
  • Whereat aghast, we were commanded straight
  • With reverence to draw it into Troy:
  • In which unhappy work was I employed;170
  • These hands did help to hale it to the gates,
  • Through which it could not enter, 'twas so huge,—
  • Edition: current; Page: [323]
  • O, had it never enter'd, Troy had stood!
  • But Priamus, impatient of delay.
  • Enforced a wide breach in that rampired wall
  • Which thousand battering-rams could never pierce,
  • And so came in this fatal instrument:
  • At whose accursèd feet, as overjoyed.
  • We banqueted, till, overcome with wine,
  • Some surfeited, and others soundly slept.180
  • Which Sinon viewing, caus'd the Greekish spies
  • To haste to Tenedos, and tell the camp:
  • Then he unlocked the horse; and suddenly,
  • From out his entrails, Neoptolemus,
  • Setting his spear upon the ground, leapt forth,
  • And, after him, a thousand Grecians more,
  • In whose stern faces shined the quenchless1 fire
  • That after burnt the pride of Asia.
  • By this, the camp was come unto the walls,
  • And through the breach did march into the streets,190
  • Where, meeting with the rest; “Kill, kill!” they cried.
  • Frighted with this confusèd noise, I rose,
  • And, looking from a turret, might behold
  • Young infants swimming in their parents' blood,
  • Headless carcases pilèd up in heaps,
  • Virgins half-dead, dragged by their golden hair,
  • And with main force flung on a ring2 of pikes,
  • Old men with swords thrust through their agèd sides,
  • Edition: current; Page: [324]
  • Kneeling for mercy to a Greekish lad,
  • Who with steel pole-axes dash'd out their brains.200
  • Then buckled I mine armour, drew my sword,
  • And thinking to go down, came Hector's ghost,1
  • With ashy visage, blueish sulphur eyes,
  • His arms toin from his shoulders, and his breast
  • Furrowed with wounds, and, that which made me weep.
  • Thongs at his heels, by which Achilles' horse
  • Drew him in triumph through the Greekish camp,
  • Burst from the earth, crying “Æneas, fly!
  • O Hector, who weeps not to hear thy name?210
  • Yet flung I forth, and, desperate of my life,
  • Ran in the thickest throngs, and with this sword
  • Sent many of their savage ghosts to hell.
  • At last came Pyrrhus, fell and full of ire,
  • His harness2 dropping blood, and on his spear
  • The mangled head of Priam's youngest son;
  • And, after him, his band of Myrmidons,
  • With balls of wild-fire in their murdering paws,
  • Which made the funeral flame that burnt fair Troy;
  • All which hemmed me about, crying, “This is he!”220
  • Ah, how could poor Æneas scape their hands?
  • My mother Venus, jealous of my health,
  • Convey'd me from their crookèd nets and bands;
  • Edition: current; Page: [325]
  • So I escaped the furious Pyrrhus' wrath
  • Who then ran to the palace of the king,
  • And at Jove's altar finding Priamus.
  • About whose withered neck hung Hecuba,
  • Folding his hand in hers, and jointly both
  • Beating their breasts, and falling on the ground,
  • He, with his falchion's point raised up at once,230
  • And with Megæra's eyes, star'd in their face,
  • Threatening a thousand deaths at every glance
  • To whom the agèd king thus, trembling, spoke;
  • “Achilles' son, remember what I was,
  • Father of fifty sons, but they are slain;
  • Lord of my fortune, but my fortune's turned:
  • King of this city, but my Troy is fired;
  • And now am neither father, lord, nor king:
  • Yet who so wretched but desires to live?
  • O, let me live, great Neoptolemus!”240
  • Not moved at all, but smiling at his tears,
  • This butcher, whilst his hands were yet held up,
  • Treading upon his breast, struck off his hands.
  • O, end, Æneas! I can hear no more.
  • At which the frantic queen leaped on his face,
  • And in his eyelids hanging by the nails,
  • A little while prolonged her husband's life.
  • At last, the soldiers pull'd her by the heels,
  • And swung her howling in the empty air,
  • Which sent an echo to the wounded king:250
  • Whereat he lifted up his bed-rid limbs,
  • And would have grappled with Achilles' son,
  • Forgetting both his want of strength and hands;
  • Edition: current; Page: [326]
  • Which he disdaining, whisk'd his sword about,
  • And with the wind1 a thereof the king fell down;
  • Then from the navel to the throat at once
  • He ripp'd old Priam; at whose latter gasp
  • Jove's marble statue gan to bend the brow,
  • As loathing Pyrrhus for this wicked act.
  • Yet he, undaunted, took his father's flag,260
  • And dipped it in the old king's chill-cold blood,
  • And then in triumph ran into the streets,
  • Through which he could not pass for slaughter'd men;
  • So, leaning on his sword, he stood stone-still,
  • Viewing the fire wherewith rich Ilion burnt.
  • By this, I got my father on my back,
  • This young boy in mine arms, and by the hand
  • Led fair Creusa, my belovèd wife;
  • When thou, Achates, with thy sword mad'st way,
  • And we were round environed with the Greeks:270
  • O, there I lost my wife! and, had not we
  • Fought manfully, I had not told this tale.
  • Yet manhood would not serve; of force we fled;
  • And, as we went unto our ships, thou know'st
  • We saw Cassandra sprawling in the streets,
  • Whom Ajax ravished in Diana's fane,2
  • Edition: current; Page: [327]
  • Her cheeks swollen with sighs, her hair all rent;
  • Whom I took up to bear unto our ships;
  • But suddenly the Grecians followed us,
  • And I, alas, was forced to let her lie!280
  • Then got we to our ships, and, being aboard,
  • Polyxena cried out, “Æneas, stay!
  • The Greeks pursue me; stay, and take me in!”
  • Moved with her voice, I leap'd into the sea,
  • Thinking to bear her on my back aboard,
  • For all our ships were launched into the deep,
  • And, as I swom, she, standing on the shore,
  • Was by the cruel Myrmidons surprised,
  • And, after that, by1 Pyrrhus sacrificed.
  • I die with melting ruth; Æneas, leave.2290
  • O, what became of agèd Hecuba?
  • How got Æneas to the fleet again?
  • But how scaped Helen, she that caus'd this war?
  • Achates, speak; sorrow hath tir'd me quite.
  • What happen'd to the queen we cannot show;
  • We hear they led her captive into Greece:
  • As for Æneas, he swom quickly back;
  • And Helena betrayed Deiphobus,
  • Her lover, after Alexander died,
  • And so was reconciled to Menelaus.300
  • O, had that ticing strumpet ne'er been born!—
  • Trojan, thy ruthful tale hath made me sad:
  • Edition: current; Page: [328]
  • Come, let us think upon some pleasing sport,
  • To rid me from these melancholy thoughts.
  • [Exeunt all except Ascanius, whom Venus, entering with Cupid at another door, takes by the sleeve as he is going off.
  • Fair child, stay thou with Dido's waiting-maid:
  • I'll give thee sugar-almonds, sweet conserves,
  • A silver girdle, and a golden purse,
  • And this young prince shall be thy playfellow.
  • Are you Queen Dido's son?
  • Ay; and my mother gave me this fine bow.310
  • Shall I have such a quiver and a bow?
  • Such bow, such quiver, and such golden shafts,
  • Will Dido give to sweet Ascanius.
  • For Dido's sake I take thee in my arms,
  • And stick these spangled feathers in thy hat:
  • Eat comfits in mine arms, and I will sing.
  • [Sings
  • Now is he fast asleep; and in this grove,1
  • Amongst green brakes, I'll lay Ascanius,
  • And strew him with sweet-smelling violets,
  • Blushing roses, purple hyacinth:320
  • These milk-white doves shall be his centronels,2
  • Who, if that any seek to do him hurt,
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  • Will quickly fly to Cytherea's1 fist.
  • Now, Cupid, turn thee to Ascanius' shape,
  • And go to Dido, who, instead of him,
  • Will set thee on her lap, and play with thee:
  • Then touch her white breast with this arrow-head,
  • That she may dote upon Æneas' love,
  • And by that means repair his broken ships,
  • Victual his soldiers, give him wealthy gifts,330
  • And he, at last, depart to Italy,
  • Or else in Carthage make his kingly throne.
  • I will, fair mother; and so play my part
  • As every touch shall wound Queen Dido's heart.
  • [Exit.
  • Sleep, my sweet nephew,2 in these cooling shades,
  • Free from the murmur of these running streams,
  • The cry of beasts, the rattling of the winds,
  • Or whisking of these leaves: all shall be still,
  • And nothing interrupt thy quiet sleep,
  • Till I return, and take thee hence again.
  • [Exit.340
Edition: current; Page: [330]



Enter1 Cupid as Ascanius.

  • Now, Cupid, cause the Carthaginian queen
  • To be enamour'd of thy brother's looks:
  • Convey this golden arrow in thy sleeve,
  • Lest she imagine thou art Venus' son;
  • And when she strokes thee softly on the head,
  • Then shall I touch her breast and conquer her.
  • Enter Dido, Anna, and Iarbas.
  • How long, fair Dido, shall I pine for thee?
  • 'Tis not enough that thou dost grant me love,
  • But that I may enjoy what I desire:
  • That love is childish which consists in words.10
  • Iarbas, know, that thou, of all my wooers,—
  • And yet have I had many mightier kings,—
  • Hast had the greatest favours I could give.
  • I fear me, Dido hath been counted light
  • In being too familiar with Iarbas;
  • Edition: current; Page: [331]
  • Albeit the gods do know, no wanton thought
  • But Dido is the favour I request.
  • Fear not, Iarbas; Dido may be thine.
  • Look, sister, how Æneas' little son20
  • Plays with your garments and embraceth you.
  • No, Dido will not take me in her arms;
  • I shall not be her son, she loves me not.
  • Weep not, sweet boy; thou shalt be Dido's son:
  • Sit in my lap, and let me hear thee sing.
  • [Cupid sings
  • No more, my child; now talk another while,
  • And tell me where learn'dst thou this pretty song.
  • My cousin Helen taught it me in Troy.
  • How lovely is Ascanius when he smiles!
  • Will Dido let me hang about her neck?30
  • Ay, wag; and give thee leave to kiss her too.
  • What will you give me now? I'll have this fan.
  • Take it, Ascanius, for thy father's sake.
  • Come, Dido, leave Ascanius; let us walk.
  • Go thou away; Ascanius shall stay.
  • Ungentle queen, is this thy love to me?
  • O, stay, Iarbas, and I'll go with thee!
  • An if my mother go, I'll follow her.
  • Why stay'st thou here? thou art no love of mine.
  • Iarbas, die, seeing she abandons thee!40
  • No; live, Iarbas: What hast thou deserved,
  • That I should say thou art no love of mine?
  • Something thou hast deserved.—Away, I say!
  • Depart from Carthage; come not in my sight.
Edition: current; Page: [332]
  • Am I not king of rich Gætulia?
  • Iarbas, pardon me, and stay a while.
  • Mother, look here.
  • What tell'st thou me of rich Gætulia?
  • Am not I queen of Libya? then depart.
  • I go to feed the humour of my love,50
  • Yet not from Carthage for a thousand worlds.
  • Iarbas!
  • Doth Dido call me back?
  • No; but I charge thee never look on me.
  • Then pull out both mine eyes, or let me die.
  • [Exit.
  • Wherefore doth Dido bid Iarbas go?
  • Because his loathsome sight offends mine eye,
  • And in my thoughts is shrined another love.
  • Poor soul, I know too well the sour of love:60
  • O, that Iarbas could but fancy me!
  • [Aside
  • Is not Æneas fair and beautiful?
  • Yes; and Iarbas foul and favourless.
  • Is he not eloquent in all his speech?
  • Yes; and Iarbas rude and rustical.
  • Name not Iarbas: but, sweet Anna, say,
  • Is not Æneas worthy Dido's love?
  • O sister, were you empress of the world,
  • Æneas well deserves to be your love!
  • So lovely is he, that, where'er he goes,70
  • The people swarm to gaze him in the face.
Edition: current; Page: [333]
  • But tell them, none shall gaze on him but I,
  • Lest their gross eye-beams taint my lover's cheeks.
  • Anna, good sister Anna, go for him,
  • Lest with these sweet thoughts I melt clean away.
  • Then, sister, you'll abjure Iarbas' love?
  • Yet must I hear that loathsome name again?
  • Run for Æneas, or I'll fly to him.
  • [Exit Anna.
  • You shall not hurt my father when he comes.
  • No; for thy sake I'll love thy father well.—80
  • O dull-conceited Dido, that till now
  • Didst never think Æneas beautiful!
  • But now, for quittance of this oversight,
  • I'll make me bracelets of his golden hair;
  • His glistering eyes shall be my looking-glass;
  • His lips an altar, where I'll offer up1
  • As many kisses as the sea hath sands;
  • Instead of music I will hear him speak;
  • His looks shall be my only library;
  • And thou, Æneas, Dido's treasury,90
  • In whose fair bosom I will lock more wealth
  • Than twenty thousand Indias can afford.
  • O, here he comes! Love, love, give Dido leave
  • To be more modest than her thoughts admit,
  • Lest I be made a wonder to the world.
  • Edition: current; Page: [334]
  • Enter æneas, Achates, Sergestus, Ilioneus, and Cloanthus.
  • Achates, how doth Carthage please your lord?
  • That will Æneas show your majesty.
  • Æneas, art thou there?
  • I understand your highness sent for me.
  • No; but, now thou art here, tell me, in sooth,100
  • In what might Dido highly pleasure thee.
  • So much have I receiv'd at Dido's hands,
  • As, without blushing, I can ask no more:
  • Yet, queen of Afric, are my ships unrigg'd,
  • My sails all rent in sunder with the wind,
  • My oars broken, and my tackling lost,
  • Yea, all my navy split with rocks and shelves;
  • Nor stern nor anchor have our maimèd fleet;
  • Our masts the furious winds struck overboard.
  • Which piteous wants if Dido will supply,110
  • We will account her author of our lives.
  • Æneas, I'll repair thy Trojan ships,
  • Conditionally that thou wilt stay with me,
  • And let Achates sail to Italy:
  • I'll give thee tackling made of rivelled1 gold,
  • Wound on the barks of odoriferous trees;2
  • Oars of massy ivory, full of holes,
  • Through which the water shall delight to play;
  • Thy anchors shall be hewed from crystal rocks,
  • Edition: current; Page: [335]
  • Which, if thou lose, shall shine above the waves;120
  • The masts, whereon thy swelling sails shall hang,
  • Hollow pyramides of silver plate;
  • The sails of folded lawn, where shall be wrought
  • The wars of Troy,—but not Troy's overthrow;
  • For ballace,1 empty Dido's treasury:
  • Take what ye will, but leave Æneas here.
  • Achates, thou shalt be so seemly2 clad,
  • As sea-born nymphs shall swarm about thy ships.
  • And wanton mermaids court thee with sweet songs,
  • Flinging in favours of more sovereign worth130
  • Than Thetis hangs about Apollo's neck,
  • So that Æneas may but stay with me.
  • Wherefore would Dido have Æneas stay?
  • To war against my bordering enemies.
  • Æneas, think not Dido is in love;
  • For, if that any man could conquer me,
  • I had been wedded ere Æneas came
  • See, where the pictures of my suitors hang;
  • And are not these as fair as fair may be?
  • I saw this man at Troy, ere Troy was sack'd.140
  • I this in Greece, when Paris stole fair Helen.
  • This man and I were at Olympia's4 games,
Edition: current; Page: [336]
  • I know this face; he is a Persian born:
  • I travell'd with him to Ætolia.
  • And I in Athens with this gentleman,
  • Unless I be deceived, disputed once.
  • But speak, Æneas; know you none of these?
  • No, madam; but it seems that these are kings.
  • All these, and others which I never saw,
  • Have been most urgent suitors for my love;150
  • Some came in person, others sent their legates,
  • Yet none obtained me: I am free from all;
  • And yet, God knows, entangled unto one.
  • This was an orator, and thought by words
  • To compass me: but yet he was deceiv'd:
  • And this a Spartan courtier, vain and wild;
  • But his fantastic humours pleased not me:
  • This was Alcion, a musician;
  • But, play'd he ne'er so sweet, I let him go.
  • This was the wealthy king of Thessaly;160
  • But I had gold enough, and cast him off:
  • This, Meleager's son, a warlike prince;
  • But weapons gree not with my tender years:
  • The rest are such as all the world well knows:
  • Yet now1 I swear, by heaven and him I love,
  • I was as far from love as they from hate.
  • O, happy shall he be whom Dido loves!
  • Then never say that thou art miserable,
  • Because, it may be, thou shalt be my love;
  • Yet boast not of it, for I love thee not,—170
  • Edition: current; Page: [337]
  • And yet I hate thee not.—O, if I speak,
  • I shall betray myself! [Aside.]—Æneas, come:1
  • We two will go a-hunting in the woods;
  • But not so much for thee,—thou art but one,—
  • As for Achates and his followers.
  • [Exeunt


Enter2 Juno to Ascanius, who lies asleep.

  • Here lies my hate, Æneas' cursèd brat,
  • The boy wherein false Destiny delights,
  • The heir of Fury,3 the favourite of the Fates,4
  • That ugly imp that shall outwear my wrath,
  • And wrong my deity with high disgrace.
  • But I will take another order now,
  • And raze th' eternal register of Time:
  • Troy shall no more call him her second hope,
  • Nor Venus triumph in his tender youth;
  • For here, in spite of Heaven, I'll murder him,10
  • And feed infection with his let-out5 life.
  • Say, Paris, now shall Venus have the ball?
  • Say, vengeance, now shall her Ascanius die?
  • O no! God wot, I cannot watch my time,
  • Edition: current; Page: [338]
  • Nor quit good turns with double fee down told:
  • Tut, I am simple, without mind1 to hurt,
  • And have no gall at all to grieve my foes!
  • But lustful Jove and his adulterous child
  • Shall find it written on confusion's front,
  • That only Juno rules in Rhamnus town.220
  • Enter Venus.
  • What should this mean? my doves are back return'd
  • Who warn me of such danger prest3 at hand
  • To harm my sweet Ascanius' lovely life.—
  • Juno, my mortal foe, what make you here?
  • Fie, Venus, that such causeless words of wrath
  • Should e'er defile so fair a mouth as thine!
  • Are not we both sprung of celestial race,
  • And banquet, as two sisters, with the gods?
  • Why is it, then, displeasure should disjoin30
  • Whom kindred and acquaintance co-unites?
  • Out, hateful hag! thou wouldst have slain my son,
  • Had not my doves discovered thy intent:
  • But I will tear thy eyes fro forth thy head,
  • And feast the birds with their blood-shotten balls,
  • If thou but lay thy fingers on my boy.
  • Is this, then, all the thanks that I shall have
  • For saving him from snakes' and serpents' stings,
  • Edition: current; Page: [339]
  • That would have killed him, sleeping, as he lay?
  • What, though I was offended with thy son,40
  • And wrought him mickle woe on sea and land,
  • When, for the hate of Trojan Ganymede,1
  • That was advancèd by my Hebe's shame,
  • And Paris' judgment of the heavenly ball,
  • I mustered all the winds unto his wreck,
  • And urg'd each element to his annoy?
  • Yet now I do repent me of his ruth,
  • And wish that I had never wrong'd him so.
  • Bootless, I saw, it was to war with fate
  • That hath so many unresisted2 friends:50
  • Wherefore I changed3 my counsel with the time,
  • And planted love where envy erst had sprung.
  • Sister of Jove, if that thy love be such
  • As these thy protestations do paint forth,
  • We two, as friends, one fortune will divide:
  • Cupid shall lay his arrows in thy lap,
  • And to a sceptre change his golden shafts;
  • Fancy4 and modesty shall live as mates,
  • And thy fair peacocks by my pigeons perch:
  • Love my Æneas, and desire is thine;60
  • The day, the night, my swans, my sweets, are thine.
  • More than melodious are these words to me,
  • Edition: current; Page: [340]
  • That overcloy my soul with their content.
  • Venus, sweet Venus, how may I deserve
  • Such amorous favours at thy beauteous hand?
  • But, that thou mayst more easily perceive
  • How highly I do prize this amity,
  • Hark to a motion of eternal league,
  • Which I will make in quittance of thy love.
  • Thy son, thou know'st, with Dido now remains,70
  • And feeds his eyes with favours of her court;
  • She, likewise, in admiring spends her time,
  • And cannot talk nor think of aught but him:
  • Why should not they, then, join in marriage,
  • And bring forth mighty kings to Carthage-town,
  • Whom casualty of sea hath made such friends?
  • And, Venus, let there be a match confirm'd
  • Betwixt these two, whose loves are so alike;
  • And both our deities, conjoin'd in one,
  • Shall chain felicity unto their throne.80
  • Well could I like this reconcilement's means;
  • But much I fear my son will ne'er consent,
  • Whose armèd soul, already on the sea,
  • Darts forth her light [un]to Lavinia's shore.
  • Fair queen of love, I will divorce these doubts,
  • And find my way to weary such fond thoughts.
  • This day they both a-hunting forth will ride
  • Into the1 woods adjoining to these walls;
  • When, in the midst of all their gamesome sports,
  • I'll make the clouds dissolve their watery works,90
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  • And drench Silvanus' dwellings with their showers;
  • Then in one cave the queen and he shall meet,
  • And interchangeably discourse their thoughts,
  • Whose short conclusion will seal up their hearts
  • Unto the purpose which we now propound.
  • Sister, I see you savour of my wiles:
  • Be it as you will have [it] for this once.
  • Meantime Ascanius shall be my charge;
  • Whom I will bear to Ida in mine arms,
  • And couch him in Adonis' purple down.100
  • [Exeunt.


Enter1 Dido, æneas, Anna, Iarbas, Achates, Cupid as Ascanius, and Followers.

  • Æneas, think not but I honour thee,
  • That thus in person go with thee to hunt:
  • My princely robes, thou see'st, are laid aside,
  • Whose glittering pomp Diana's shroud2 supplies;
  • All fellows now, disposed alike to sport;
  • The woods are wide, and we have store of game.
  • Fair Trojan, hold my golden bow a while,
  • Until I gird my quiver to my side.—
  • Lords, go before; we two must talk alone.
  • Ungentle, can she wrong Iarbas so?10
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  • I'll die before a stranger have that grace.
  • “We two will talk alone”—what words be these!
  • [Aside.
  • What makes Iarbas here of all the rest?
  • We could have gone without your company.
  • But love and duty led him on perhaps
  • To press beyond acceptance to your sight.
  • Why! man of Troy, do I offend thine eyes?
  • Or art thou grieved thy betters press so nigh?
  • How now, Gætulian! are you grown so brave,
  • To challenge us with your comparisons?20
  • Peasant, go seek companions like thyself,
  • And meddle not with any that I love.—
  • Æneas, be not moved at what he says;
  • Women may wrong by privilege of love;
  • But, should that man of men, Dido except,
  • Have taunted me in these opprobrious terms,
  • I would have either drunk his dying blood,
  • Or else I would have given my life in gage.29
  • Huntsmen, why pitch you not your toils apace,
  • And rouse the light-foot deer from forth their lair?
  • Sister, see, see Ascanius in his pomp,
  • Bearing his hunt-spear bravely in his hand!
  • Yea, little son, are you so forward now?
  • Ay, mother; I shall one day be a man,
  • And better able unto other arms;
  • Meantime these wanton weapons serve my war,
  • Which I will break betwixt a lion's jaws.
  • What? dar'st thou look a lion in the face?
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  • Ay; and outface him too, do what he can.40
  • How like his father speaketh he in all!
  • And mought I live to see him sack rich Thebes,
  • And load his spear with Grecian princes' heads,
  • Then would I wish me with Anchises' tomb,
  • And might I live to see thee shipp'd away,
  • And hoist aloft on Neptune's hideous hills,
  • Then would I wish me in fair Dido's arms,
  • And dead to scorn that hath pursu'd me so.
  • [Aside.
  • Stout friend Achates, dost thou know this wood?50
  • As I remember, here you shot the deer
  • That saved your famish'd soldiers' lives from death,
  • When first you set your foot upon the shore;
  • And here we met fair Venus, virgin—like.
  • Bearing her bow and quiver at her back.
  • O, how these irksome labours now delight,
  • And overjoy my thoughts with their escape!
  • Who would not undergo all kind of toil,
  • To be well—stor'd with such a winter's tale?
  • Æneas, leave these dumps, and let's away.60
  • Some to the mountains, some unto the soil,1
  • You to the valleys,—thou unto the house.
  • [Exeunt all except Iarbas.
  • Ay, this it is which wounds me to the death,
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  • To see a Phrygian, far—fet1 o'er the sea,
  • Preferr'd before a man of majesty.
  • O love! O hate! O cruel women's hearts,
  • That imitate the moon in every change,
  • And, like the planets, ever love to range!
  • What shall I do, thus wronged with disdain?
  • Revenge me on Æneas or on her?70
  • On her! fond man, that were to war 'gainst heaven,
  • And with one shaft provoke ten thousand darts.
  • This Trojan's end will be thy envy's aim,
  • Whose blood will reconcile thee to content,
  • And make love drunken with thy sweet desire.
  • But Dido, that now holdeth him so dear,
  • Will die with very tidings of his death:
  • But time will discontinue her content,
  • And mould her mind unto new fancy's shapes,
  • O God of heaven, turn the hand of Fate80
  • Unto that happy day of my delight!
  • And then—what then? Iarbas shall but love:
  • So doth he now, though not with equal gain;
  • That resteth in the rival of thy pain,
  • Who ne'er will cease to soar till he be slain.
  • [Exit


The storm. Enter AEneas and Dido in the cave, at several times

  • Æneas!
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  • Dido!
  • Tell me, dear love, how found you out this cave?
  • By chance, sweet queen, as Mars and Venus met
  • Why, that was in a net, where we are loose;
  • And yet I am not free,—O, would I were!
  • Why, what is it that Dido may desire
  • And not obtain, be it in human power?
  • The thing that I will die before I ask,
  • And yet desire to have before I die.10
  • It is not aught Æneas may achieve?
  • Dido, Æneas! no; although his eyes do pierce.
  • What, hath Iarbas anger'd her in aught?
  • And will she be avenged on his life?
  • Not anger'd me, except in angering thee.
  • Who, then, of all so cruel may he be
  • That should detain, thy eye in his defects?
  • The man that I do eye where'er I am;
  • Whose amorous face, like Pæan, sparkles fire,
  • Whenas he butts his beams on Flora's bed.20
  • Prometheus hath put on Cupid's shape,
  • And I must perish in his burning arms:
  • Æneas, O Æneas, quench these flames!
  • What ails my queen? is she faln sick of late?
  • Not sick, my love; but sick I must conceal
  • The torment that it boots me not reveal:
  • And yet I'll speak,-and yet I'll hold my peace.
  • Do shame her worst, I will disclose my grief:
  • Æneas, thou art he-what did I say?
  • Something it was that now I have forgot30
  • What means fair Dido by this doubtful speech?
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  • Nay, nothing; but Æneas loves me not.
  • Æneas' thoughts dare not ascend so high
  • As Dido's heart, which monarchs might not scale.
  • It was because I saw no king like thee,
  • Whose golden crown might balance may content;
  • But now that I have found what to affect
  • I follow one that loveth fame 'fore1 me,
  • And rather had seem fair [in] Sirens' eyes,
  • Than to the Carthage queen that dies for him.40
  • If that your majesty can look so low
  • As my despised worths that shun all praise,
  • With this my hand I give to you my heart,
  • And vow, by all the gods of hospitality,
  • By heaven and earth, and my fair brother's bow,
  • By Paphos, Capys,2 and the purple sea
  • From whence my radiant mother did ascend,3
  • And by this sword that sav'd me from the Greeks,
  • Never to leave these new-upreared walls,
  • Whiles Dido lives and rules in Juno's town,-50
  • Never to like or love any but her!
  • Dido, What more than Delian music do I hear,
  • That calls my soul from forth his living seat
  • To move unto the measures of delight?
  • Kind clouds, that sent forth such a courteous storm
  • As made disdain to fly to fancy's lap!
  • Stout love, in mine arms make thy Italy,
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  • Whose crown and kingdom rests at thy command:
  • Sichæus, not Æneas, be thou call'd;
  • The king of Carthage, not Anchises' son.60
  • Hold, take these jewels at thy lover's hand,
  • [Giving jewels, &c.
  • These golden bracelets, and this wedding-ring,
  • Wherewith my husband woo'd me yet a maid,
  • And be thou king of Libya by my gift.
  • [Exeunt to the care.
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Enter1 Achates, Cupid as Ascanius, Iarbas, and Anna.

  • Did ever men see such a sudden storm
  • Or day so clear so suddenly o'ercast?
  • I think some fell enchantress dwelleth here,
  • That can call them2 forth whenas she please,
  • And dive into black tempest's treasury,
  • In all my life Ignever knew the like;
  • It hailed, it snowed, it lightened all at once.
  • I think it was the devil revelling night,
  • There was such hurly-burly in the heavens:10
  • Doubtless Apollo's axle-tree is crack'd,
  • Or aged Atlas' shoulder out of joint,
  • The motion was so over-violent.
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  • In all this coil, where have ye left the queen?
  • Nay, where's my warlike father, can you tell?
  • Behold, where both of them come forth the cave,
  • Come forth the cave! can heaven endure this sight?
  • Iarbas curse that unrevenging Jove,
  • Whose flinty dart slept in Typhœus'1 den,
  • Whiles these adulterers surfeited with sin.20
  • Nature, why mad'st me not some poisonous beast,
  • That with the sharpness of my edged sting
  • I might have staked them both unto the earth,
  • Whilst they were sporting in this darksome cave!
  • [Aside.
  • Enter; from the cave, Æneas and Dido.
  • The air is clear, and southern winds are whist.2
  • Come, Dido, let us hasten to the town,
  • Since gloomy Æolus doth cease to frown.
  • Achates and Ascanius, well met
  • Fair Anna, how escap'd you from the shower?
  • As others did, by running to the wood.30
  • But where were you, Iarbas, all this while?
  • Not with Æneas in the ugly cave.
  • I see, Æneas sticketh in your mind;
  • But I will soon put by that stumbling-block,
  • And quell those hopes that thus employ your cares.3
  • [Exeunt.
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Enter1 Iarbas to sacrifice.

  • Come, servants, come; bring forth the sacrifice,
  • That I may pacify that gloomy Jove,
  • Whose empty altars have enlarg'd our ills.—
  • [Servants bring in the sacrifice, and then exeunt.
  • Eternal Jove, great master of the clouds,
  • Father of gladness and all frolic thoughts,
  • That with thy gloomy2 hand corrects the heaven,
  • When airy creatures war amongst themselves;
  • Hear, hear, O, hear Iarbas' plaining prayers,
  • Whose hideous echoes make the welkin howl,
  • And ail the woods Eliza3 to resound!10
  • The woman that thou willed us entertain.
  • Where, straying in our borders up and down,
  • She crav'd a hide of ground to build a town,
  • With whom we did divide both laws and land,
  • And all the fruits that plenty else sends forth,
  • Scorning our loves and royal marriage-rites,
  • Yields up her beauty to a stranger's bed;
  • Who, having wrought her shame, is straightway fled
  • Now, if thou be'st a pitying god of power
  • On whom ruth and compassion ever waits,20
  • Redress these wrongs, and warn him to his ships,
  • That now afflicts me with his flattering eyes.
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  • Enter Anna.
  • How now, Iarbas! at your prayers so hard?
  • Ay, Anna: is there aught you would with me?
  • Nay, no such weighty business of import
  • But may be slacked until another time:
  • Yet, if you would partake with me the cause
  • Of this devotion that detaineth you,
  • Anna, against this Trojan do I pray,30