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By you unhappied and disfigur'd clean.
You have, in manner, with your sinful hours,
Made a divorce betwixt his queen and him;
Broke the possession of a royal bed,
And stain'd the beauty of a fair queen's cheeks
With tears drawn from her eyes by your foul wrongs.
Myself-a prince, by fortune of my birth;
Near to the king in blood; and near in love,
Till you did make him misinterpret me,
Have stoop'd my neck under your injuries,
And sigh'd my English breath in foreign clouds,
Eating the bitter bread cf banishment:
Whilst you have fed upon my seignories,
Dispark'd my parks, and fell'd my forest woods;
From my own windows torn my household coat,
Raz'd out my impress, leaving me no sign
Save men's opinions, and my living blood,
To show the world I am a gentleman,
This, and much more, much more than twice all this,
Condemns you to the death:
To execution and the hand of death.
Bushy. More welcome is the stroke of death to me,
Than Bolingbroke to England. - Lords, farewell.
Green. My comfort is, that heaven will take
And plague injustice with the pains of hell.
Boling. My lord Northumberland, see them
[Exeunt NORTHUMBERLAND and others, with
Uncle, you say, the queen is at your house :
For heaven's sake, fairly let her be entreated:
Tell her, I send to her my kind commends;
Take special care my greetings be deliver'd.
York. A gentleman of mine I have despatch'd
With letters of your love to her at large.
Boling. Thanks, gentle uncle. Come, lords,
SCENE II. The Coast of Wales. A Castle in View.
Flourish: Drums and Trumpets. Enter KING RICHARD, BISHOP OF CARLISLE, AUMERLE, and Soldiers.
K. Rich. Barkloughly castle call you this at hand? Aum. Yea, my lord. How brooks your grace the air,
After late tossing on the breaking seas?
Guard it, I pray thee, with a lurking adder;
Whose double tongue may with a mortal touch
Throw death upon thy sovereign's enemies.
Mock not my senseless conjuration, lords;
This earth shall have a feeling, and these stones
Prove armed soldiers, ere her native king
Shall falter under foul rebellious arms.
Bishop. Fear not, my lord; that Power, that made you king,
Hath power to keep you king, in spite of all.
The means that heaven yields must be embrac'd,
And not neglected; else, if heaven would,
And we will not, heaven's offer we refuse;
The proffer'd means of succour and redress.
Aum. He means, my lord, that we are too remiss;
Whilst Bolingbroke, through our security,
Grows strong and great, in substance, and in friends.
K. Rich. Discomfortable cousin! know'st thou
That when the searching eye of heaven is hid
Behind the globe, and lights the lower world,
Then thieves and robbers range abroad unseen,
In murders, and in outrage, bloody here;
But when, from under this terrestrial ball,
He fires the proud tops of the eastern pines,
And darts his light through every guilty hole,
Then murders, treasons, and detested sins,
The cloak of night being pluck'd from off their
Stand bare and naked, trembling at themselves?
So when this thief, this traitor, Bolingbroke,
Who all this while hath revell'd in the night,
Whilst we were wand'ring with the antipodes, -
Shall see us rising in our throne the east,
His treasons will sit blushing in his face,
Not able to endure the sight of day,
But, self-affrighted, tremble at his sin.
Not all the water in the rough rude sea
Can wash the balm from an anointed king :
The breath of worldly men cannot depose
The deputy elected by the Lord:
For every man that Bolingbroke hath press'd,
To lift shrewd steel against our golden crown,
God for his Richard hath in heavenly pay
A glorious angel: then, if angels fight,
Weak men must fall; for heaven still guards the
Welcome, my lord; How far off lies your power?
Sal. Nor near, nor further off, my gracious lord,
Than this weak arm: Discomfort guides my tongue,
And bids me speak of nothing but despair.
K. Rich. Needs must I like it well; I weep for One day too late, I fear, my noble lord,
To stand upon my kingdom once again.
Dear earth, I do salute thee with my hand,
Though rebels wound thee with their horses' hoofs:
As a long parted mother with her child
Plays fondly with her tears, and smiles in meeting;
So, weeping, smiling, greet I thee, my earth,
And do thee favour with my royal hands.
Feed not thy sovereign's foe, my gentle earth,
Nor with thy sweets comfort his rav'nous sense:
But let thy spiders, that suck up thy venom,
And heavy-gaited toads, lie in their way;
Doing annoyance to the treacherous feet,
Which with usurping steps do trample thee.
Yield stinging nettles to mine enemies :
And when they from thy bosom pluck a flower,
Hath clouded all thy happy days on earth:
O, call back yesterday, bid time return,
And thou shalt have twelve thousand fighting men
To-day, to-day, unhappy day, too late,
O'erthrows thy joys, friends, fortune, and thy state;
For all the Welshmen, hearing thou wert dead,
Are gone to Bolingbroke, dispers'd and fled.
Aum. Comfort, my liege: why looks your grace so pale?
K. Rich. But now, the blood of twenty thousand
Did triumph in my face, and they are fled; And, till so much blood thither come again,
Have I not reason to look pale and dead? All souls that will be safe, fly from my side; For time hath set a blot upon my pride.
Scroop. More health and happiness betide my liege,
Than can my care-tun'd tongue deliver him.
K. Rich. Mine ear is open, and my heart prepar'd;
The worst is worldly loss, thou canst unfold.
Say, is my kingdom lost? why, 'twas my care;
And what loss is it, to be rid of care?
Strives Bolingbroke to be as great as we?
Greater he shall not be; if he serve God,
We'll serve him too, and be his fellow so:
Revolt our subjects? that we cannot mend;
They break their faith to God, as well as us:
Cry, woe, destruction, ruin, loss, decay;
The worst is death, and death will have his day.
Scroop. Glad am I, that your highness is so arm'd
To bear the tidings of calamity.
Like an unseasonable stormy day,
Which makes the silver rivers drown their shores,
As if the world were all dissolved to tears;
So high above his limits swells the rage
Of Bolingbroke, covering your fearful land
With hard bright steel, and hearts harder than steel.
White beards have arm'd their thin and hairless
Against thy majesty; boys, with women's voices,
Strive to speak big, and clap their female joints
In stiff unwieldy arms against thy crown:
Thy very beadsmen learn to bend their bows
Of double-fatal yew against thy state;
Yea, distaff-women manage rusty bills
Against thy seat: both young and old rebel,
And all goes worse than I have power to tell.
K. Rich. Too well, too well, thou tell'st a tale
Where is the earl of Wiltshire? where is Bagot?
What is become of Bushy? where is Green?
That they have let the dangerous enemy
Measure our confines with such peaceful steps?
If we prevail, their heads shall pay for it.
I warrant they have made peace with Bolingbroke. Scroop. Peace have they made with him, indeed, my lord.
K. Rich. O villains, vipers, damn'd without redemption!
Dogs, easily won to fawn on any man! Snakes, in my heart-blood warm'd, that sting my heart!
Three Judasses, each one thrice worse than Judas! Would they make peace? terrible hell make war Upon their spotted souls for this offence!
Scroop. Sweet love, I see, changing his property, Turns to the sourest and most deadly hate: Again uncurse their souls; their peace is made With heads, and not with hands: those whom you
Have felt the worst of death's destroying wound, And lie full low, grav'd in the hollow ground.
K. Rich. No matter where; of comfort no man speak :
Let's talk of graves, of worms, and epitaphs;
Make dust our paper, and with rainy eyes
Write sorrow on the bosom of the earth.
Let's choose executors, and talk of wills:
And yet not so,—for what can we bequeath,
Save our deposed bodies to the ground?
Our lands, or lives, and all are Bolingbroke's,
And nothing can we call our own, but death;
And that small model of the barren earth,
Which serves as paste and cover to our bones.
For heaven's sake, let us sit upon the ground,
And tell sad stories of the death of kings:
How some have been depos'd, some slain in war,
Some haunted by the ghosts they have deposed;
Some poison'd by their wives, some sleeping kill'd;
All murder'd: -For within the hollow crown,
That rounds the mortal temples of a king,
Keeps death his court: and there the antick site.
Scoffing his state, and grinning at his pomp;
Allowing him a breath, a little scene
To monarchize, be fear'd, and kill with looks;
Infusing him with self and vain conceit,
As if this flesh, which walls about our life,
Were brass impregnable, and, humour'd thus,
Comes at the last, and with a little pin
Bores through his castle wall, and
- farewell king!
Cover your heads, and mock not flesh and blood
With solemn reverence; throw away respect,
Tradition, form, and ceremonious duty,
For you have but mistook me all this while :
I live with bread like you, feel want, taste grief,
Need friends:- Subjected thus,
How can you say to me - I am a king?
Car. My lord, wise men ne'er wail their present woes,
But presently prevent the ways to wail.
To fear the foe, since fear oppresseth strength,
Gives, in your weakness, strength unto your foe,
And so your follies fight against yourself.
Fear, and be slain; no worse can come, to fight:
And fight and die, is death destroying death;
Where fearing dying, pays death servile breath.
Aum. My father hath a power, enquire of him; And learn to make a body of a limb.
K. Rich. Thou chid'st me well :-Proud Bolingbroke, I come
To change blows with thee for our day of doom.
This ague-fit of fear is over-blown ;
An easy task it is, to win our own.
Say, Scroop, where lies our uncle with his power?
Speak sweetly, man, although thy looks be sour.
Scroop. Men judge by the complexion of the sky
The state and inclination of the day:
So may you by my dull and heavy eye,
My tongue hath but a heavier tale to say.
I play the torturer, by small and small,
To lengthen out the worst that must be spoken:
Your uncle York hath join'd with Bolingbroke;
And all your northern castles yielded up,
And all your southern gentlemen in arms
Upon his party.
If not, I'll use te advantage of my power,
And lay the summer's dust with showers of blood,
Rain'd from the wounds of slaughter'd Englishmen :
The which, how far off from the mind of Bolingbroke
It is, such crimson tempest should bedrench
The fresh green lap of fair king Richard's land,
My stooping duty tenderly shall show.
Go, signify as much; while here we march
Upon the grassy carpet of this plain.
Beshrew thee, cousin, which didst lead me forth
Of that sweet way I was in to despair!
What say you now? What comfort have we now?
By heaven, I'll hate him everlastingly,
That bids me be of comfort any more.
Go to Flint castle; there I'll pine away;
A king, woe's slave, shall kingly woe obey.
That power I have, discharge; and let them go
To ear the land that hath some hope to grow,
For I have none: - - Let no man speak again
To alter this, for counsel is but vain.
He does me double wrong, That wounds me with the flatteries of his tongue. Discharge my followers, let them hence; Away, From Richard's night, to Bolingbroke's fair day. [Exeunt. Wales. Before Flint Castle. Enter, with drum and colours, BOLINGBROKE and Forces; YORK, NORTHUMBERLAND, and others. Boling. So that by this intelligence we learn, The Welshmen are dispers'd; and Salisbury Is gone to meet the king, who lately landed, With some few private friends, upon this coast.
North. The news is very fair, and good, my lord; Richard, not far from hence, hath hid his head.
York. It would beseem the lord Northumberland, To say-king Richard: - Alack the heavy day, When such a sacred king should hide his head! North. Your grace mistakes me; only to be brief, Left I his title out.
York. The time hath been, Would you have been so brief with him, he would Have been so brief with you, to shorten you, For taking so the head, your whole head's length. Boling. Mistake not, uncle, further than you should.
York. Take not, good cousin, further than you should,
Lest you mis-take: The heavens are o'er your head. Boling. I know it, uncle; and oppose not Myself against their will.. But who comes here?
[NORTHUMBERLAND advances to the castle,
with a trumpet.
Let's march without the noise of threat'ning drum,
That from the castle's totter'd battlements
Our fair appointments may be well perus'd.
Methinks, king Richard and myself should meet
With no less terror than the elements
Of fire and water, when their thund'ring shock
At meeting tears the cloudy cheeks of heaven.
Be he the fire, I'll be the yielding water:
The rage be his, while on the earth I rain
My waters; on the earth, and not on him.
March on, and mark king Richard how he looks.
A parle sounded, and answered by another trumpet
within. Flourish. Enter on the walls KING
RICHARD, the BISHOP OF CARLISLE, AUMERLE,
SCROOP, and SALISBURY.
York. See, see, king Richard doth himself appear,
As doth the blushing discontented sun,
From out the fiery portal of the east ;
When he perceives the envious clouds are bent
To dim his glory, and to stain the track
Of his bright passage to the occident.
Yet looks he like a king; behold, his eye,
As bright as is the eagle's, lightens forth
Controuling majesty; Alack, alack, for woe,
That any harm should stain so fair a show!
K. Rich. We are amaz'd; and thus long have we
To watch the fearful bending of thy knee,
Because we thought ourself thy lawful king:
And if we be, how dare thy joints forget
To pay their awful duty to our presence?
If we be not, show us the hand of God
That hath dismiss'd us from our stewardship;
For well we know, no hand of blood and bone
Can gripe the sacred handle of our scepter,
Unless he do profane, steal, or usurp.
And though you think, that all, as you have done
Have torn their souls, by turning them from us,
And we are barren, and bereft of friends; ——
Yet know, my master, God omnipotent,
Is mustering in his clouds, on our behalf,
Armies of pestilence; and they shall strike
Your children yet unborn, and unbegot,
That lift your vassal hands against my head,
And threat the glory of my precious crown.
Tell Bolingbroke, (for yond', methinks, he is,)
That every stride he makes upon my land,
Is dangerous treason: He is come to ope
The purple testament of bleeding war;
But ere the crown he looks for live in peace,
Ten thousand bloody crowns of mothers' sons
Shall ill become the flower of England's face;
Change the complexion of her maid-pale peace
To scarlet indignation, and bedew
Her pastures' grass with faithful English blood.
North. The king of heaven forbid, our lord the
Should so with civil and uncivil rins
Be rush'd upon! Thy thrice-noble cousin,
Harry Bolingbroke, doth humbly kiss thy hand;
And by the honourable tomb he swears,
That stands upon thy royal grandsire's bones;
And by the royalties of both your bloods,
Currents that spring from one most gracious head;
And by the buried hand of warlike Gaunt;
And by the worth and honour of himself,
Comprising all that may be sworn or said,
His coming hither hath no further scope,
Than for his lineal royalties, and to beg
Enfranchisement immediate on his knees;
Which on thy royal party granted once,
His glittering arms he will commend to rust,
His barbed steeds to stables, and his heart
To faithful service of your majesty.
This swears he, as he is a prince, is just;
And, as I am a gentleman, I credit him.
K. Rich. Northumberland, say, - thus the king
K. Rich. O God! O God! that e'er this tongue of mine,
That laid the sentence of dread banishment
On yon proud man, should take it off again
With words of sooth! O, that I were as great
As is my grief, or lesser than my name!
Or that I could forget what I have been!
Or not remember what I must be now!
Swell'st thou, proud heart? I'll give thee scope to
Since foes have scope to beat both thee and me.
Aum. Northumberland comes back from Boling-
K. Rich. What must the king do now? Must he submit?
The king shall do it. Must he be depos'd?
The king shall be contented: Must he lose
The name of king? o'God's name, let it go:
I'll give my jewels, for a set of beads;
My gorgeous palace, for a hermitage;
My gay apparel, for an alms-man's gown;
My figur'd goblets, for a dish of wood;
My scepter, for a palmer's walking-staff;
My subjects, for a pair of carved saints;
And my large kingdom for a little grave,
A little little grave, an obscure grave: —
Or I'll be buried in the king's highway,
Some way of common trade, where subjects' feet
May hourly trample on their sovereign's head:
For on my heart they tread, now whilst I live;
And, buried once, why not upon my head?.
Aumerle, thou weep'st; My tender-hearted cou-
We'll make foul weather with despised tears;
Our sighs, and they, shall lodge the summer corn,
Till they have fretted us a pair of graves
Within the earth; and, therein laid, There lies
Two kinsmen, digg'd their graves with weeping eyes?
Would not this ill do well? Well, well, I see
I talk but idly, and you mock at me. —
Most mighty prince, my lord Northumberland,
What says king Bolingbroke? will his majesty
Give Richard leave to live till Richard die?
You make a leg, and Bolingbroke says — -ay.
North. My lord, in the base court he doth attend
To speak with you; may't please you to come
K. Rich. Down, down, I come; like glistering
Wanting the manage of unruly jades.
[NORTH. retires to BOLING. In the base court? Base court, where kings grow
Sorrow and grief of heart Makes him speak fondly, like a frantick man : Yet he is come.
Enter KING RICHARD, and his Attendants below.
Boling. Stand all apart,
And show fair duty to his majesty.
My gracious lord, ·
K. Rich. Fair cousin, you debase your princely
K. Rich. Your own is yours, and I am yours, and all.
Boling. So far be mine, my most redoubted lord, As my true service shall deserve your love.
K. Rich. Well you deserve: They well deserve to have, That know the strong'st and surest way to get. Uncle, give me your hand: nay, dry your eyes; Tears show their love, but want their remedies. Cousin, I am too young to be your father, Though you are old enough to be my heir. What you will have, I'll give, and willing too; For do we must, what force will have us do. Set on towards London: - Cousin, is it so? Boling. Yea, my good lord. K. Rich.
1 Lady. Madam, we'll play at bowls. Queen. 'Twill make me think, The world is full of rubs, and that my fortune Runs 'gainst the bias.
1 Lady. Madam, we will dance. Queen. My legs can keep no measure in delight, When my poor heart no measure keeps in grief: Therefore, no dancing, girl; some other sport. 1 Lady. Madam, we'll tell tales. Queen.
Of sorrow, or of joy?
1 Lady. Of either, madam.
Of neither, girl:
For if of joy, being altogether wanting,
It doth remember me the more of sorrow;
Or if of grief, being altogether had,
It adds more sorrow to my want of joy :
For what I have, I need not to repeat;
And what I want, it boots not to complain.
1 Lady. Madam, I'll sing.
'Tis well, that thou hast cause;
But thou should'st please me better, would'st thou
1 Lady. I could weep, madam, would it do you
Queen. And I could weep, would weeping do me
And never borrow any tear of thee.
But stay, here come the gardeners :
Let's step into the shadow of these trees. —
Enter a Gardener and two Servants.
My wretchedness unto a row of pins,
They'll talk of state: for every one doth so
Against a change: Woe is forerun with woe.
[QUEEN and Ladies retire.
Gard. Go, bind thou up yon' dangling apricocks,
Which, like unruly children, make their sire
Stoop with oppression of their prodigal weight:
Give some supportance to the bending twigs. -
Go thou, and like an executioner,
Cut off the heads of too-fast-growing sprays,
That look too lofty in our commonwealth :
All must be even in our government.
You thus employ'd, I will go root away
The noisome weeds, that without profit suck
The soil's fertility from wholesome flowers.
1 Serv. What, are they dead?
They are; and Bolingbroke
Hath seiz'd the wasteful king.-Oh! what pity is it,
That he had not so trimm'd and dress'd his land,
As we this garden! We at time of year
Do wound the bark, the skin of our fruit-trees;
Lest, being over-proud with sap and blood,
With too much riches it confound itself:
Had he done so to great and growing men,
They might have liv'd to bear, and he to taste
Their fruits of duty. All superfluous branches
We lop away, that bearing boughs may live :
Had he done so, himself had borne the crown,
Which waste of idle hours hath quite thrown down.
1 Serv. What, think you then, the king shall be
Gard. Depress'd he is already; and depos'd,
'Tis doubt, he will be: Letters came last night
To a dear friend of the good duke of York's,
That tell black tidings.
O, I am press'd to death,
Through want of speaking! Thou, old Adam's
likeness, [Coming from her concealment.
Set to dress this garden, how dares
Thy harsh-rude tongue sound this unpleasing news?
What Eve, what serpent hath suggested thee
To make a second fall of cursed man?
Why dost thou say, king Richard is depos'd?
Dar'st thou, thou little better thing than earth,
Divine his downfal? Say, where, when, and how,
Cam'st thou by these ill-tidings? speak, thou wretch.
Gard. Pardon me, madam: little joy have I,
To breathe this news: yet, what I say is true.
King Richard, he is in the mighty hold
Of Bolingbroke; their fortunes both are weigh'd:
In your lord's scale is nothing but himself,
And some few vanities that make him light;
But in the balance of great Bolingbroke,
Besides himself, are all the English peers,
And with that odds he weighs king Richard down.
Post you to London, and you'll find it so :
I speak no more than every one doth know.
Queen. Nimble mischance, that art so light of
Doth not thy embassage belong to me,
And am I last that knows it? O, thou think'st
1 Serv. Why should we, in the compass of a pale, To serve me last, that I may longest keep
Keep law, and form, and due proportion,
Showing, as in a model, our firm estate?
When our sea-walled garden, the whole land,
Is full of weeds; her fairest flowers chok'd
Her fruit-trees all unprun'd, her hedges ruin'd,
Her knots disorder'd, and her wholesome herbs
Swarming with caterpillars?
Hold thy peace : —
He that hath suffer'd this disorder'd spring,
Hath now himself met with the fall of leaf:
The weeds, that his broad-spreading leaves did
That seem'd in eating him to hold him up,
Are pluck'd up, root and all, by Bolingbroke;
I mean the earl of Wiltshire, Bushy, Green.
Thy sorrow in my breast.— Come, ladies, go,
To meet at London London's king in woe.
What, was I born to this! that my sad look
Should grace the triumph of great Bolingbroke?
Gardener, for telling me this news of woe,
I would, the plants thou graft'st, may never grow.
[Exeunt QUEEN and Ladies.
Gard. Poor queen! so that thy state might be no
I would my skill were subject to thy curse. -
Here did she drop a tear; here, in this place,
I'll set a bank of rue, sour herb of grace:
Rue, even for ruth, here shortly shall be seen,
In the remembrance of a weeping queen. [Exeunt.