Obrázky stránek
PDF
ePub

Thy mother felt more than a mother's pain, And yet brought forth less than a mother's To wit, an indigest deformed lump, [hope; Not like the fruit of such a goodly tree. [born, Teeth hadst thou in thy head, when thou wast To signify, thou cam'st to bite the world: And, if the rest be true which I have heard, Thou cam'st.

Glo. I'll hear no more;-Die, prophet, in thy speech; [Stabs him.

For this, amongst the rest, was I ordain'd. K. Hen. Ay, and for much more slaughter after this.

O God! forgive my sins, and pardon thee! [Dies. Glo. What, will the aspiring blood of Lan

caster

Sink in the ground? I thought it would have
mounted.
[death!
See, how my sword weeps for the poor king's
O, may such purple tears be always shed
From those that wish the downfal of our
house!-

If any spark of life be yet remaining,
Down, down to hell; and say-I sent thee
thither,
[Stabs him again.
I, that have neither pity, love, nor fear.-
Indeed, 'tis true, that Henry told me of;
For I have often heard my mother say,
I came into the world with my legs forward:
Had I not reason, think ye, to make haste,
And seek their ruin that usurp'd our right?
The midwife wonder'd; and the women cried,
O, Jesus bless us, he is born with teeth!
And so I was; which plainly signified-
That I should snarl, and bite, and play the
dog.

[so, Then since the heavens have shap'd my body Let hell make crook'd my mind to answer it. I have no brother, I am like no brother: And this word-love, which greybeards call divine,

[light;

Be resident in men like one another,
And not in me; I am myself alone.
Clarence beware; thou keep'st me from the
But I will sort a pitchy day for thee:
For I will buz abroad such prophecies,
That Edward shall be fearful of his life;
And then, to purge his fear, I'll be thy death.
King Henry, and the prince his son, are gone:
Clarence, thy turn is next, and then the rest;
Counting myself but bad, till I be best.-
I'll throw thy body in another room,
And triumph, Henry, in thy day of doom.

[Exit.

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

King EDWARD is discovered sitting on his Throne; Queen ELIZABETH with the infunt Prince, CLARENCE, GLOSTER, HASTINGS, and others, near him.

K. Edw. Once more we sit in England's royal throne,

* Select.

Re-purchas'd with the blood of enemies.
What valiant foe-men, like to autumn's corn,
Have we mow'd down, in tops of all their
pride?

Three dukes of Somerset, threefold renown'd
For hardy and undoubted champions:
Two Cliffords, as the father and the son,
And two Northumberlands; two braver men
Ne'er spurr'd their coursers at the trumpet's

sound:

With them, the two brave bears, Warwick and Montague,

That in their chains fetter'd the kingly lion,
And made the forest tremble when they roar'd.
Thus have we swept suspicion from our seat,
And made our footstool of security.—
Come hither, Bess, and let me kiss my boy:-
Young Ned, for thee, thine uncles, and my-
self,
[night;
Have in our armours watch'd the winter's
Went all a foot in summer's scalding heat,
That thou might'st repossess the crown in
peace;

And of our labours thou shalt reap the gain. Glo. I'll blast his harvest, if your head were laid;

For yet I am not look'd on in the world.
This shoulder was ordain'd so thick, to heave;
And heave it shall some weight, or break my

back:

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]

ACT I.

SCENE 1.-London.-A Street.
Enter GLOSTER.

Glo. Now is the winter of our discontent
Made glorious summer by this sun of York;
And all the clouds, that lowr'd upon our house,
In the deep bosom of the ocean buried.
Now are our brows bound with victorious
wreaths;

Our bruised arms hung up for monuments;
Our stern alarums.chang'd to merry meetings,
Our dreadful marches to delightful measures."
Grim-visag'd war hath smooth'd his wrinkled
front;

And now, instead of mounting barbedt steeds,
To fright the souls of fearful adversaries,-
He capers nimbly in a lady's chamber,
To the lascivious pleasing of a lute.
But I,-that am not shap'd for sportive tricks,
Nor made to court an amorous looking-glass;
I that am rudely stamp'd, and want love's
majesty,

To strut before a wanton ambling nymph;
I, that am curtail'd of this fair proportion,
Cheated of feature by dissembling nature,
Deform'd, unfinish'd, sent before my time
+ Armed.

* Dances.

Into this breathing world, scarce half made up, And that so lamely and unfashionable, That dogs bark at me, as I halt by them;Why I, in this weak piping time of peace, Have no delight to pass away the time; Unless to spy my shadow in the sun, And descant on mine own deformity; And therefore,-since I cannot prove a lover, To entertain these fair well-spoken days,I am determined to prove a villain, And hate the idle pleasures of these days. Plots have I laid, inductions dangerous, By drunken prophecies, libels, and dreams, To set my brother Clarence, and the king, In deadly hate the one against the other: And, if king Edward be as true and just, As I am subtle, false, and treacherous, This day should Clarence closely be mew'd up; About a prophecy, which says that G Of Edward's heirs the murderer shall be. Dive, thoughts, down to my soul! here Cla

rence comes.

Enter CLARENCE, guarded, and BRAKENBURY, Brother, good day: What means this armed guard, That waits upon your grace?

* Preparations for mischief.

Clar. His majesty,

Tendering my person's safety, hath appointed
This conduct to convey me to the Tower.
Glo. Upon what cause?

Clar. Because my name is-George.

Glo. Alack, my lord, that fault is none of yours;

He should, for that, commit your godfathers:-
O, belike, his majesty hath some intent,
That you shall be new christen'd in the Tower.
But what's the matter, Clarence? may I know?
Clar. Yea, Richard, when I know; for I
protest,

As yet I do not: but, as I can learn,
He hearkens after prophecies, and dreams;
And from the cross-row plucks the letter G,
And says-a wizard told him, that by G
His issue disinherited should be;

And, for my name of George begins with G,
It follows in his thought, that I am he:
These, as I learn, and such like toys* as these,
Have mov'd his highness to commit me now.
Glo. Why, this it is, when men are rul'd by

women:

'Tis not the king, that sends you to the Tower; My lady Grey, his wife, Clarence, 'tis she, That tempers him to this extremity.

Was it not she, and that good man of worship,
Anthony Woodeville, her brother there, [er;
That made him send lord Hastings to the Tow-
From whence this present day he is deliver'd?
We are not safe, Clarence, we are not safe.
Clar. By heaven, I think, there is no man se-
cure,
[heralds
But the queen's kindred, and night-walking
That trudge betwixt the king and mistress

Shore.

Heard you not, what an humble suppliant
Lord Hastings was to her for his delivery?

Glo. Humbly complaining to her deity
Got my lord chamberlain his liberty.
I'll tell you what,-I think, it is our way,
If we will keep in favour with the king,
To be her men, and wear her livery:
The jealous o'er-worn widow, and herself,+
Since that our brother dubb'd them gentlewo-
Are mighty gossips in this monarchy. [men,
Brak. I beseech your graces both to pardon

me;

His majesty hath straitly given in charge,
That no man shall have private conference,
Of what degree soever, with his brother.

Glo. Even so? an please your worship, Brakenbury,

You may partake of any thing we say:
We speak no treason, man;-We say, the king
Is wise, and virtuous; and his noble queen
Well struck in years; fair, and not jealous:
We say, that Shore's wife hath a pretty foot,
A cherry lip,

A bonny eye, a passing pleasing tongue;
And the queen's kindred are made gentlefolks:
How say you, Sir? can you deny all this?
Brak. With this, my lord, myself have
naught to do.

Glo. Naught to do with mistress Shore? I tell thee, fellow,

He that doth naught with her, excepting one, Were best to do it secretly, alone.

Brak. What one, my lord?

Glo. Her husband, knave:-Would'st thou betray me?

Brak. I beseech your grace to pardon me; and, withal, Forbear your conference with the noble duke.

[blocks in formation]

Clar. We know thy charge, Brakenbury, and will obey.

Glo. We are the queen's abjects, and must obey.

Brother, farewell: I will unto the king;
And whatsoever you will employ me in,-
Were it, to call king Edward's widow-sis-
I will perform it to enfranchise you. [ter,-
Mean time, this deep disgrace in brotherhood,
Touches me deeper than you can imagine.
Clar. I know it pleaseth neither of us well.
Glo. Well, your imprisonment shall not be
I will deliver you, or else lie for you: [long;
Mean time, have patience.

Clar. I must perforce; farewell.

[Exeunt CLARENCE, BRAKENBURY, and Guard.

Glo. Go, tread the path that thou shalt ne'er return,

Simple, plain Clarence!-I do love thee so,
That I will shortly send thy soul to heaven,
If heaven will take the present at our hands.
But who comes here? the new-deliver'd Hast-
ings?

[blocks in formation]

For they, that were your enemies, are his,
And have prevail'd as much on him, as you.
Hust. More pity that the eagle should be
mew'd,t

While kites and buzzards prey at liberty.
Glo. What news abroad?

Hast. No news so bad abroad, as this at home;

The king is sickly, weak, and melancholy,
And his physicians fear him mightily.

Glo. Now, by Saint Paul, this news is bad
O, he hath kept an evil diet long, [indeed.
And over-much consum'd his royal person;
'Tis very grievous to be thought upon.
What, is he in his bed?

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]

*

If honour may be shrouded in a hearse,-
Whilst I a while obsequiously lament
The untimely fall of virtuous Lancaster.-
Poor key-cold figure of a holy king!
Pale ashes of the house of Lancaster!
Thou bloodless remnant of that royal blood!
Be it lawful that I invocate thy ghost,
To hear the lamentations of poor Anne,
Wife to thy Edward, to thy slaughter'd son,
Stabb'd by the self-same hand that made these
wounds!

Lo, in these windows, that let forth thy life,
I pour the helpless balm of my poor eyes:-
O, cursed be the hand that made these holes!
Cursed the heart, that had the heart to do it!
Cursed the blood, that let this blood from
hence!

More direful hap betide that hated wretch,
That makes us wretched by the death of thee,
Than I can wish to adders, spiders, toads,
Or any creeping venom'd thing that lives!
If ever he have child, abortive be it,
Prodigious, and untimely brought to light,
Whose ugly and unnatural aspect
May fright the hopeful mother at the view;
And that be heir to his unhappiness!
If ever he have wife, let her be made
More miserable by the death of him, [thee!-
Than I am made by my young lord, and
Cone, now, toward Chertsey with your holy
load,

Taken from Paul's to be interred there;
And, still as you are weary of the weight,
Rest you, whiles I lament king Henry's

corse.

[The Bearers take up the corpse, and advance. Enter GLOSTER.

Glo. Stay you, that bear the corse, and set it down.

Anne. What black magician conjures up this fiend,

To stop devoted charitable deeds?

Glo. Sweet saint, for charity be not so curst. Anne. Foul devil, for God's sake, hence, and trouble us not;

For thou hast nade the happy earth thy hell,
Fill'd it with cursing cries, and deep ex-
claims.

Behold this pattern of thy butcheries:-
If thou delight to view thy heinous deeds,
O, gentlemen, see, see! dead Henry's wounds
Open their congeal'd mouths, and bleed
afresh!-

Blush, blush, thou lump of foul deformity;
For 'tis thy presence that exhales this blood
From cold and empty veins, where no blood
dwells;

Thy deed, inhuman and unnatural,
Provokes this deluge most unnatural.-
O God, which this blood madest, revenge his
death!

O earth, which this blood drink'st, revenge
his death!

Either, heaven, with lightning strike the murderer dead,

Or, earth, gape open wide, and eat him quick;
As thou dost swallow up this good king's
blood,

Which his hell-govern'd arm hath butchered!
Glo. Lady, you know no rules of charity,
Which renders good for bad, blessings for

[blocks in formation]

angry.

Vouchsafe, divine perfection of a woman,
Of these supposed evils, to give me leave,
By circumstance, but to acquit myself.

Anne. Vouchsafe, diffus'd'infection of a man,
For these known evils, but to give me leave,
By circumstance, to curse thy cursed self.

Glo. Fairer than tongue can name thee, let
me have

Some patient leisure to excuse myself.
Anne. Fouler than heart can think thee,
thou canst make

No excuse current, but to hang thyself.
Glo. By such despair, 1 should accuse my-
self.

Anne. And, by despairing, shalt thou stand
excus'd;

Glo. Villains, set down the corse; or, by For doing worthy vengeance on thyself,

Saint Paul,

I'll make a corse of him that disobeys.

1 Gent. My lord, stand back, and let the coffin pass.

Glo. Unmanner'd dog! stand thou when I
command:

Advance thy halbert higher than my breast,
Or, by Saint Paul, I'll strike thee to my foot,
And spurn upon thee, beggar, for thy bold-

ness. [The bearers set down the coffin. Anne. What, do you tremble? are you all afraid?

Alas, I blame you not: for you are mortal,
And mortal eyes cannot endure the devil.-
Avaunt thou dreadful minister of hell!
Thou hadst but pow over his mortal body,
His soul thou canst aot have; therefore, be
gone.

* Funereal.

That didst unworthy slaughter upon others.
Glo. Say, that I slew them not?
Anne. Why then, they are not dead:

But dead they are, and, devilish slave, by

[blocks in formation]
[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

Anne. Some dungeon.

Glo. Your bed-chamber.

Anne. Ill rest betide the chamber where thou liest!

Glo. So will it, madam, till I lie with you. Anne. I hope so.

Glo. I know so.-But, gentle lady Anne,To leave this keen encounter of our wits, And fall somewhat into a slower method ;Is not the causer of the timeless deaths Of these Plantagenets, Henry, and Edward, As blameful as the executioner?

Anne. Thou wast the cause, and most accurs'd effect.

Glo. Your beauty was the cause of that effect; Your beauty, which did haunt me in my sleep, To undertake the death of all the world, So I might live one hour in your sweet bosom. Anne. If I thought that, I tell thee, homicide, These nails should rend that beauty from my

cheeks.

Glo. These eyes would not endure that beauty's wreck,

You should not blemish it, if I stood by:
As all the world is cheered by the sun,
So I by that; it is my day, my life.

Anne. Black night o'ershade thy day, and death thy life!

Glo. Curse not thyself, fair creature; thou art both.

Anne. I would I were, to be reveng'd on thee.

Glo. It is a quarrel most unnatural, To be reveng'd on him that loveth thee.

Anne. It is a quarrel just and reasonable, To be reveng'd' on him that kill'd my husband.

Glo. He that bereft thee, lady, of thy husband,

Did it to help thee to a better husband.

Anne. His better doth not breathe upon the earth.

Glo. He lives, that loves you better than he could.

[blocks in formation]

Glo. Thine eyes, sweet lady, have infected mine.

Anne. 'Would they were basilisks, to strike thee dead!

Glo. I would they were, that I might die at once;

For now they kill me with a living death. Those eyes of thine from mine have drawn salt tears, [drops: Sham'd their aspects with store of childish These eyes, which never shed remorseful tear,

Not, when my father York and Edward wept,
To hear the piteous moan that Rutland made,
When black-fac'd Clifford shook his sword at
him:

Nor when thy warlike father, like a child,
Told the sad story of my father's death;
And twenty times made pause, to sob, and

weep,

That all the standers-by had wet their cheeks,
Like trees bedash'd with rain: in that sad time,
My manly eyes did scorn an humble tear;
And what these sorrows could not thence ex-
hale,
[weeping.
Thy beauty hath, and made them blind with
I never su'd to friend, nor enemy; [word;
My tongue could never learn sweet soothing
But now thy beauty is propos'd my fee,
My proud heart sues, and prompts my tongue
to speak. [She looks scornfully at him.
Teach not thy lip such scorn; for it was made
For kissing, lady, not for such contempt.
If thy revengeful heart cannot forgive,
Lo! here I lend thee this sharp-pointed sword;
Which if thou please to hide in this true breast,
And let the soul forth that adoreth thee,
I lay it naked to the deadly stroke,
And humbly beg the death upon my knee.

[He lays his breast open; she offers at it with
his sword.

Nay, do not pause; for I did kill king Henry ;-
But 'twas thy beauty that provoked me.
Nay, now despatch; 'twas I that stabb'd young
Edward

She again offers at his breast. But 'twas thy heavenly face that set me on. [She lets fall the sword. Take up the sword again, or take up me. Anne. Arise, dissembler: though I wish thy I will not be thy executioner. [death,

Glo. Then bid me kill myself, and I will do it.

Anne. I have already.

Glo. That was in thy rage:

Speak it again, and, even with the word,
This hand, which, for thy love, did kill thy

love,

Shall, for thy love, kill a far truer love;
To both their deaths shalt thou be accessary.
Anne. I would, I knew thy heart.
Glo. "Tis figur'd in my tongue.
Anne. I fear me, both are false.
Glo. Then man was never true.

Anne. Well, well, put up your sword.
Glo. Say then, my peace is made.
Anne. That shall you know hereafter.
Glo. But shall I live in hope?
Anne. All men, I hope, live so.
Glo. Vouchsafe to wear this ring.
Anne. To take, is not to give.

[She puts on the ring. Glo. Look, how this ring encompasseth thy finger,

Even so thy breast encloseth my poor heart;

* Pitiful.

« PředchozíPokračovat »