Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

Wear both of them, for both of them are thine.

And if thy poor devoted servant may
But beg one favour at thy gracious hand,
Thou dost confirm his happiness for ever.
Anne. What is it?

Glo. That it may please you leave these sad
designs

To him that hath more cause to be a mourner,
And presently repair to Crosby-place ;*
Where-after I have solemnly interr'd,
At Chertsey monast'ry, this noble king,
And wet his grave with my repentant tears,-
I will with all expedient duty see you:
For divers unknown reasons, I beseech you,
Grant me this boon.

Anne. With all my heart; and much it joys
me too,

To see you are become so penitent.-
Tressel, and Berkeley, go along with me.
Glo. Bid me farewell.

Anne. 'Tis more than you deserve:
But, since you teach me how to flatter you,
Imagine I have said farewell already.

[Exeunt Lady ANNE, TRESSEL, and
BERKLEY.

Glo. Take up the corse, Sirs.
Gent. Towards Chertsey, noble lord?
Glo. No, to White-Friars; there attend my
coming.

[Exeunt the rest, with the corse. Was ever woman in this humour woo'd? Was ever woman in this humour won? I'll have her,-but I will not keep her long. What! I, that kill'd her husband, and his father,

To take her in her heart's extremest hate;
With curses in her mouth, tears in her eyes,
The bleeding witness of her hatred by;
With God, her conscience, and these bars
against me,

And I no friends to back my suit withal,
But the plain devil, and dissembling looks,
And yet to win her,-all the world to nothing!
Ha!

Hath she forgot already that brave prince,
Edward, her lord, whom I some three months
since,

Stabb'd in my angry mood at Tewksbury?
A sweeter and a lovelier gentleman,-
Fram'd in the prodigality of nature,
Young, valiant, wise, and, no doubt, right
royal,-

The spacious world cannot again afford:
And will she yet abase her eyes on me,
That cropp'd the golden prime of this sweet

prince,

And made her widow to a woeful bed?

On me, whose all not equals Edwards moiety?
On me, that halt, and am misshapen thus?
My dukedom to a beggarly denier,t
I do mistake my person all this while:
Upon my life, she finds, although I cannot,
Myself to be a marvellous proper man.
I'll be at charges for a looking-glass;
And entertain a score or two of tailors,
To study fashions to adorn my body:
Since I am crept in favour with myself,
I will maintain it with some little cost.
But, first, I'll turn yon fellow in his grave;
And then return lamenting to my love.-
Shine out, fair sun, till I have bought
glass,

That I may see my shadow as I pass.

* In Bishopsgate-street.
+ A small French coin,

a

[Exit.

SCENE III.-The same.--A Room in the Palace.

Enter Queen ELIZABETH, Lord RIVERS, and Lord GREY.

Riv. Have patience, madam; there's no doubt his majesty

Will soon recover his accustom'd health.
Grey. In that you brook it ill, it makes him

worse:

[fort, Therefore, for God's sake, entertain good comAnd cheer his grace with quick and merry words.

Q. Eliz. If he were dead, what would betide of me?

Grey. No other harm, but loss of such a lord. Q. Eliz. The loss of such a lord includes all harms.

Grey. The heavens have bless'd you with a goodly son,

To be your comforter, when he is gone.

Q. Eliz. Ah, he is young; and his minority Is put into the trust of Richard Gloster, A man that loves not me, nor none of you.

Riv. Is it concluded, he shall be protector? Q. Eliz. It is determin'd, not concluded yet: But so it must be, if the king miscarry.

Enter BUCKINGHAM and STANLEY.

Grey. Here come the lords of Buckingham and Stanley.

Buck, Good time of day unto your royal grace!

Stan. God make your majesty joyful as you have been!

Q. Eliz. The countess Richmond, good my lord of Stanley,

To your good prayer will scarcely say-amen. Yet, Stanley, notwithstanding she's your wife, And loves not me, be you, good lord, assur'd, I hate not you for her proud arrogance.

Stan. I do beseech you, either not believe The envious slanders of her false accusers; Or, if she be accus'd on true report, Bear with her weakness, which, I think, proceeds [lice. From wayward sickness, and no grounded maQ. Eliz. Saw you the king to-day, my lord of

Stanley?

Stan. But now, the duke of Buckingham, Are come from visiting his majesty. [and I, Q. Eliz. What likelihood of his amendment,

lords?

Buck. Madam, good hope: his grace speaks cheerfully.

Q. Eliz. God grant him health! Did you confer with him?

Buck. Ay, madam: he desires to make atone

ment

Between the duke of Gloster and your brothers, And between them and my lord chamberlain; And sent to warn them to his presence.

Q. Eliz. Would all were well!-But that will never be ;

I fear, our happiness is at the height.

Enter GLOSTER, HASTINGS, and DORSET. Glo. They do me wrong, and I will not endure it :

Who are they, that complain unto the king,
That I, forsooth, am stern, and love them not?
By holy Paul, they love his grace but lightly,
That fill his ear with such dissentious rumours,
Because I cannot flatter, and speak fair,
Smile in men's faces, smooth, deceive, and cog,

* Summon.

Duck with French nods and apish courtesy,
I must be held a rancorous enemy.
Cannot a plain man live, and think no harm,
But thus his simple truth must be abus'd
By silken, sly, insinuating Jacks?

Grey. To whom in all this presence speaks your grace!

Glo. To thee, that hast nor honesty, nor grace. [wrong?When have 1 injur'd thee? when done thee Or thee?-or thee?-or any of your faction? A plague upon you all! His royal grace,— Whom God preserve better than you would

wish!

[blocks in formation]

The king, of his own royal disposition,
And not provok'd'by any suitor else;
Aiming, belike, at your interior hatred,
That in your outward action shows itself,
Against my children, brothers, and myself,
Makes him to send; that thereby he may
gather

The ground of your ill-will, and so remove it.
Glo. I cannot tell;-The world is grown so

bad, That wrens may prey where eagles dare not perch:

Since every Jack+ became a gentleman,
There's many a gentle person made a Jack.

Q. Eliz. Come, come, we know your meaning, brother Gloster;

You envy my advancement, and my friends;
God grant, we never may have need of you!
Glo. Meantime, God grants that we have
need of you:

Our brother is imprison'd by your means,
Myself disgrac'd, and the nobility
Held in contempt; while great promotions
Are daily given, to ennoble those

That scarce, some two days since, were worth a noble.

Q. Eliz. By Him, that rais'd me to this careful height

From that contented hap which I enjoy'd,
I never did incense his majesty
Against the duke of Clarence, but have been
An earnest advocate to plead for him.
My lord, you do me shameful injury,
Falsely to draw me in these vile suspects.
Glo. You may deny that you were not the

cause

Of my lord Hastings' late imprisonment.
Riv. She may, my lord; for-

Glo. She may, lord Rivers?-Why, who

knows not so?

She may do more, Sir, than denying that:
She may help you to many fair preferments;
And then deny her aiding hand therein,
And lay those honours on your high desert.
What may she not? She may,-ay, marry may
she,-

Riv. What, marry, may she?

Glo. What, marry, may she? marry with a A bachelor, a handsome stripling too: [king, I wis, your grandam had a worser match. Q. Eliz. My lord of Gloster, I have too long borne [scoffs: Your blunt upbraidings, and your bitter By heaven, I will acquaint his majesty, Of those gross taunts I often have endur'd.

I had rather be a country servant-maid,
Than a great queen, with this condition-
To be so baited, scorn'd, and stormed at:
Small joy have I in being England's queen.

Enter Queen MARGARET, behind.

Q. Mar. And lessen'd be that small, God, I beseech thee!

Thy honour, state, and seat, is due to me.
Glo. What? Threat you me with telling of
the king?
[said

Tell him, and spare not: look, what I have
I will avouch, in presence of the king:
I dare adventure to be sent to the Tower.
"Tis time to speak, my pains are quite forgot.
Q. Mar. Out, devil! I remember them too
well:
Thou kill'dst my husband Henry in the Tower,
And Edward, my poor son, at Tewksbury.

Glo. Ere you were queen, ay, or your husband king,

I was a pack-horse in his great affairs;
A weeder-out of his proud adversaries,
A liberal rewarder of his friends;

To royalizet his blood, I spilt my own.

Q. Mur. Ay, and much better blood than his, or thine.

Glo. In all which time, you, and your husband Grey,

Were factious for the house of Lancaster;And, Rivers, so were you: Was not your

husband

In Margaret's battle Saint Albans slain? Let me put in your minds, if you forget, [are; What you have been ere now, and what you Withal, what I have been, and what I am.

Q. Mar. A murd'rous villain, and so still thou art.

Glo. Poor Clarence did forsake his father Warwick,

Ay, and forswore himself, Which Jesu pardon!

Q. Mar. Which God revenge!

crown;

Glo. To fight on Edward's party, for the [up: And, for his meed, poor lord, he is mew'ag I would to God, my heart were flint like Ed

ward's,

[blocks in formation]

pedlar;

Far be it from my heart, the thought thereof! Q. Eliz. As little joy, my lord, as you suppose, [king; You should enjoy, were you this country' As little joy you may suppose in me, That I enjoy, being the queen thereof.

Q. Mar. A little joy enjoys the queen thereFor I am she, and altogether joyless. of;

I can no longer hold me patient.- [Advancing. Hear me, you wrangling pirates, that fall out In sharing that which you have pill'd¶ from Which of you trembles not, that looks on me?

me:

[blocks in formation]

If not, that, I being queen, you bow like subjects;

Yet that, by you depos'd, you quake like rebels?

Ah, gentle villain, do not turn away!

Glo. Foul wrinkled witch, what mak'st thou in my sight?

Q. Mar. But repetition of what thou hast marr'd;

That will I make, before I let thee go.

Glo. Wert thou not banished on pain of death?

Q. Mar. I was; but I do find more pain in banishment,

Than death can yield me here by my abode. A husband, and a son, thou ow'st to me,And thou, a kingdom;-all of you, allegiance: This sorrow that I have, by right is yours; And all the pleasures you usurp, are mine. Glo. The curse my noble father laid on thee,[paper, When thou didst crown his warlike brows with And with thy scorns drew'st rivers from his eyes;

And then, to dry them, gav'st the duke a clout, Steep'd in the faultless blood of pretty Rutland;

His curses, then from bitterness of soul Denounc'd against thee, are all fall'n upon thee; And God, not, we, hath plagu'd thy bloody deed.

Q. Eliz. So just is God, to right the innocent. Hust. O, 'twas the foulest deed to slay that babe,

And the most merciless, that e'er was heard of. Riv. Tyrants themselves wept when it was reported.

Dors. No man but prophesied revenge for it. Buck. Northumberland, then present, wept

to see it.

Q. Mar. What! were you snarling all, before
I came,

Ready to catch each other by the throat,
And turn you all your hatred now on me?
Did York's dread curse prevail so much with
heaven,

That Henry's death, my lovely Edward's death,
Their kingdom's loss, my woeful banishment,
Could all but answer for that peevish brat?
Can curses pierce the clouds, and enter hea-
ven?-

Why, then give way, dull clouds, to my quick curses!

Though not by war, by surfeit die your king, As ours by murder, to make him a king! Edward, thy son, that now is prince of Wales, For Edward, my son, that was prince of Wales,

Die in his youth, by like untimely violence!
Thyself a queen, for me that was a queen,
Outlive thy glory, like my wretched self!
Long may'st thou live, to wail thy children's
And see another, as I see thee now, [loss;
Deck'd in thy rights, as thou art stall'd in
mine!

Long die thy happy days before thy death;
And, after many lengthen'd hours of grief,
Die neither mother, wife, nor England's

queen!-

[blocks in formation]

Q. Mar. And leave out thee? stay, dog, for thou shalt hear me.

If heaven have any grievous plague in store,
Exceeding those that I can wish upon thee,
O, let them keep it, till thy sins be ripe,
And then hurl down their indignation
On thee, the troubler of the poor world's peace!
The worm of conscience still begnaw thy
soul!
[liv'st,

Thy friends suspect for traitors while thou
And take deep traitors for thy dearest friends!
No sleep close up that deadly eye of thine,
Unless it be while some tormenting dream
Affrights thee with a hell of ugly devils!
Thou elvish-mark'd, abortive, rooting hog!
Thou that wast seal'd in thy nativity
The slave of nature, and the son of hell!
Thou slander of thy mother's heavy womb!
Thou loathed issue of thy fathers' loins!
Thou rag of honour! thou detested-
Glo. Margaret.

Q. Mar. Richard!
Glo. Ha?

Q. Mar. I call thee not.

Glo. I cry thee mercy then; for I did think, That thou hadst call'd me all these bitter

[blocks in formation]

Lest, to thy harm, thou move our patience. Q. Mar. Foul shame upon you! you have all mov'd mine.

Riv. Were you well serv'd, you would be taught your duty.

Q. Mar. To serve me well, you all should do me duty, [jects: Teach me to be your queen, and you my subO, serve me well, and teach yourselves that duty.

Dor. Dispute not with her, she is lunatic. Q. Mar. Peace, master marquis, you are malapert: [rent :+ Your fire-new stamp of honour is scarce curO, that your young nobility could judge, What 'twere to lose it, and be miserable! They that stand high, have many blast to shake them;

And, if they fall, they dash themselves to pieces. Glo. Good counsel, marry ;-learn it, learn

it marquis.

Dor. It touches you, my lord, as much as

[blocks in formation]

Whose bright out-shining beams thy cloudy
Hath in eternal darkness folded up. [wrath
Your aiery buildeth in our aiery's nest :-
O God, that see'st it, do not suffer it;
As it was won with blood, lost be it so!
Buck. Peace, peace, for shame, if not for
charity.

Q Mar. Urge neither charity nor shame to
Uncharitably with me have you dealt, [me;
And shamefully by you my hopes are butcher'd.
My charity is outrage, life my shame,-
And in my shame still live my sorrow's rage!
Buck. Have done, have done.

Q. Mar. O princely Buckingham, I kiss thy hand,

In sign of league and amity with thee:
Now fair befall thee, and thy noble house!
Thy garments are not spotted with our blood,
Nor thou within the compass of my curse.
Buck. Nor no one here; for curses never pass
The lips of those that breathe them in the air.
Q. Mlar. I'll not believe but they ascend the
sky,

And there awake God's gentle-sleeping peace.
O Buckingham, beware of yonder dog;
Look, when he fawns, he bites; and, when he
bites,

His venom tooth will rankle to the death:
Have not to do with him, beware of him;
Sin, death, and hell have set their marks on

And all their ministers attend on him. [him; Glo. What doth she say, my lord of Buckingham?

Buck. Nothing that I respect, my gracious

lord.

[blocks in formation]

Riv. And so doth mine; I muse, why she's at liberty.

Glo. I cannot blame her, by God's holy mother;

She hath had too much wrong, and I repent My part thereof, that I have done to her.

Q. Eliz. I never did her any, to my knowledge.

Glo. Yet you have all the vantage of her I was too hot to do somebody good, [wrong. That is too cold in thinking of it now. Marry, as for Clarence, he is well repaid; He is frank'd up to fatting for his pains;God pardon them that are the cause thereof! Riv. A virtuous and a Christian-like conclusion,

To pray for them that hath done scath to us. Glo. So do I ever, being well advis'd;For had I curs'd now, I had curs'd myself.

Enter CATESBY.

[Aside.

[blocks in formation]

Glo. I do the wrong, and first begin to brawl. The secret mischiefs that I set abroach, lay unto the grievous charge of others. Clarence,-whom I, indeed, have laid in darkI do beweep to many simple gulls; [ness,Namely, to Stanley, Hastings, Buckingham; And tell them-'tis the queen and her allies, That stir the king against the duke my brother. Now they believe it; and withal whet me To be reveng'd on Rivers, Vaughan, Grey: But then I sigh, and, with a piece of scripture, Tell them-that God bids us do good for evil: And thus I clothe my naked villany With old odd ends, stol'n forth of holy writ: And seem a saint, when most I play the devil. Enter two MURDERERS.

But soft, here come my executioners.How now, my hardy, stout resolved mates? Are you now going to despatch this thing? 1 Murd. We are, my lord; and come to have the warrant,

[blocks in formation]

to prate,

Talkers are no good doers; be assur'd,
We go to use our hands, and not our tongues.
Glo. Your eyes drop mill-stones, when fools'
eyes drop tears:

I like you, lads;-about your business straight;
Go, go, despatch.

1 Murd. We will, my noble lord. [Exeunt. SCENE IV.-The same.-A Room in the Tower.

Enter CLARENCE and BRAKENBURY. Brak. Why looks your grace so heavily today?

Clar. O, I have pass'd a miserable night, So full of fearful dreams, of ugly sights, That, as I am a Christian faithful man, I would not spend another such a night, Though 'twere to buy a world of happy days; So full of dismal terror was the time.

Brak. What was your dream, my lord? I pray you, tell me.

Clar. Methought, that I had broken from the
Tower,

And was embark'd to cross to Burgundy;
And, in my company, my brother Gloster:
Who from my cabin tempted me to walk
Upon the hatches; thence we look'd toward
England,

And cited up a thousand heavy times,
During the wars of York and Lancaster
That had befall'n us. As we pac'd along
Upon the giddy footing of the batches,
Methought, that Gloster stumbled; and, in
falling,

Struck me, that thought to stay him, over-board,
Into the tumbling billows of the main.
O Lord! methought, what pain it was to
drown!

What dreadful noise of water in mine ears!
What sights of ugly death within mine eyes!
Methought, I saw a thousand fearful wrecks;
A thousand men that fishes gnaw'd upon;
Wedges of gold, great anchors, heaps of pearl,
Inestimable stones, unvalued jewels,

[blocks in formation]

To yield the ghost: but still the envious flood
Kept in my soul, and would not let it forth
To seek the empty, vast, and wand'ring air;
But smother'd it within my panting bulk,*
Which almost burst to belch it in the sea.
Brak. Awak'd you not with this sore agony?
Clar. O, no, my dream was lengthen'd after
life;

O, then began the tempest to my soul!
I pass'd, methought, the melancholy flood,
With that grim ferryman which poets write of,
Unto the kingdom of perpetual night.
The first that there did greet my stranger soul,
Was my great father-in-law, renowned War-
wick,

Who cried aloud,-What scourge for perjury
Can this dark monarchy afford false Clarence?
And so he vanish'd: Then came wand'ring by
A shadow like an angel, with bright hair
Dabbled in blood; and he shriek'd out aloud,-
Clarence is come,-false, fleeting, perjur'd Cla-
rence,-

That stabb'd me in the field by Tewksbury ;-
Seize on him, furies, take him to your torments!
With that, methought, a legion of foul fiends
Environ'd me, and howled in mine ears
Such hideous cries, that, with the very noise,
I trembling wak'd, and, for a season after,
Could not believe but that I was in hell;
Such terrible impression made my dream.
Brak. No marvel, lord, though it affrighted
you!

I am afraid, methinks, to hear you tell it.
Clar. O, Brakenbury, I have done these
things-

That now give evidence against my soul,-
For Edward's sake; and, see, how he requites

me!

[thee,
O God! if my deep prayers cannot appease
But thou wilt be aveng'd on my misdeeds,
Yet execute thy wrath on me alone: [dren!-
O, spare my guiltless wife, and my poor
I pray thee, gentle keeper, stay by me;
My soul is heavy, and I fain would sleep.
Brak. I will, my lord; God give your grace
good rest!-

[blocks in formation]

Let him see our commission; talk no more.
[A Paper is delivered to BRAKENBURY,
who reads it.

Brak. I am, in this, commanded to deliver
The noble duke of Clarence to your hands:-
I will not reason what is meant thereby,
Because I will be guiltless of the meaning.
Here are the keys;-there sits the duke asleep:
I'll to the king; and signify to him,
That thus to you I have resign'd my charge.
1 Murd. You may, Sir; 'tis a point of wis-
dom:
[Exit BRAKENBURY.
2 Murd. What, shall we stab him as he
sleeps?

Fare you well.

1 Murd. No; he'll say, 'twas done cowardly, when he wakes.

2 Murd. When he wakes! why, fool, he shall never wake until the great judgement day. 1 Murd. Why, then he'll say, we stabb'd him sleeping.

2 Murd. The urging of that word, judgement, hath bred a kind of remorse in me.

1 Murd. What? art thou afraid?

2 Murd. Not to kill him, having a warrant for it; but to be damn'd for killing him, from the which no warrant can defend me.

1 Murd. I thought, thou had'st been resolute. 2 Murd. So I am, to let him live.

1 Murd. I'll back to the duke of Gloster, and tell him so.

2 Murd. Nay, I pr'y thee, stay a little: I hope, this holy humour of mine will change; it was wont to hold me but while one would tell twenty.

1 Murd. How dost thou feel thyself now? 2 Murd. 'Faith some certain dregs of conscience are yet within me.

1 Murd. Remember our reward, when the deed's done.

2 Murd. Come, he dies; I had forgot the eward.

1 Murd. Where's thy conscience now? 2 Murd. In the duke of Gloster's purse. 1 Murd. So when he opens his purse to give us our reward, thy conscience flies out. 2 Murd. "Tis no matter; let it go; there's few, or none, will entertain it.

1 Murd. What, if it come to thee again?

2 Murd. I'll not meddle with it, it is a danchil-gerous thing, it makes a man a coward; a man cannot steal, but it accuseth him; a man cannot swear, but it checks him; a man cannot lie with his neighbours wife, but it detects him: 'Tis a blushing shame-fac'd spirit, that mutinies in a man's bosom; it fills one full of obstacles: it made me once restore a purse of gold, that by chance I found; it beggars any man that keeps it: it is turned out of all towns and cities for a dangerous thing; and every man, that means to live well, endeavours to trust to himself, and live without it.

TCLARENCE reposes himself on a Chair.
Sorrow breaks seasons, and reposing hours
Makes the night morning, and the noon-tide
night.

Princes have but their titles for their glories,
An outward honour for an inward toil;
And, for unfelt imaginations,

They often feel a world of restless cares:
So that, between their titles, and low name,
There's nothing differs but the outward fame.

Enter the two MURDERERS.

1 Murd. Ho! who's here?
Brak. What would'st thou, fellow? and how
cam'st thou hither?

1 Murd. I would speak with Clarence, and I came hither on my legs.

Brak. What, so brief?
*Body.

1 Murd. 'Zounds, it is even now at my elbow, persuading me not to kill the duke.

2 Murd. Take the devil in thy mind, and believe him not: he would insinuate with thee, but to make thee sigh.

1 Murd. I am strong-fram'd, he cannot prevail with me.

2 Murd. Spoke like a tall* fellow, that respects his reputation. Come, shall we fall to work?

1 Murd. Take him over the costardt with the

[merged small][ocr errors]
« ForrigeFortsæt »