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I am thus bold | At young Elizabeth, my brother's daughter, To put your grace in mind of what you promis'd me. And, by that knot, looks proudly on the crown, K. Rich. Well, but what is't o'clock? To her I go, a jolly thriving wooer. Buck. Upon the stroke Of ten.
K. Rich. Well, let it strike.
Why, let it strike? K. Rich. Because that, like a Jack,' thou keep'st the stroke
Betwixt thy begging and
K. Rich. Thou troublest me; I am not in the!
But, O, the devil-there the villain stopp'd;
Enter King Richard.
And here he comes:- -All health, my sovereign lord!
But where, to say the truth, I do not know.
K. Rich. Come to me, Tyrrel, soon, at after
When thou shalt tell the process of their death.
I humbly take my leave. [Exit. K. Rich. The son of Clarence have I penn'd up close;
His daughter meanly match'd in marriage;
(1) An image like those at St. Dunstan's church in Fleet-street. (3) Merciless.
(2) His castle in Wales.
Cate. My lord,
K. Rich. Good news or bad, that thou com'st in
Cate. Bad news, my lord: Mortons is fled to
And Buckingham, back'd with the hardy Welsh
Is in the field, and still his power increaseth.
Than Buckingham, and his rash-levied strength.
Delay leads impotent and snail-pac'd beggary:
Q. Mar. So, now prosperity begins to mellow,
Enter Queen Elizabeth and the Duchess of York. Q. Eliz. Ah, my poor princes! ah, my tender babes
My unblown flowers, new-appearing sweets!
Q. Mar. Plantagenet doth quit Plantagenet,
Q. Eliz. Wilt thou, O God, fly from such gentle
And throw them in the entrails of the wolf?
Ah, who hath any cause to mourn, but we?
[Sitting down with them. Tell o'er your woes again by viewing mine :I had an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him; I had a husband, till a Richard kill'd him: Thou hadst an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him; Thou hadst a Richard, till a Richard kill'd him. Duch. I had a Richard too, and thou didst kill him; I had a Rutland too, thou holp'st to kill him.
Q. Mar. Thou hadst a Clarence too, and Richard kill'd him.
From forth the kennel of thy womb hath crept
Duch. O, Harry's wife, triumph not in my woes; God witness with me, I have wept for thine.
Q. Mar. Bear with me, I am hungry for revenge, And now I cloy me with beholding it. Thy Edward he is dead, that kill'd my Edward; Thy other Edward dead, to quit my Edward; Young York he is but boot, because both they Match not the high perfection of my loss. Thy Clarence he is dead, that stabb'd my Edward; And the beholders of this tragic play, The adulterate Hastings, Rivers, Vaughan, Grey, Untinely smother'd in their dusky graves. Richard yet lives, hell's black intelligencer; Only reserv'd their factor, to buy souls, And send them thither: But at hand, at hand, Ensues his piteous and unpitied end: Earth hell burns, fiends roar, gapes, saints pray, To have him suddenly convey'd from hence:-Cancel his bond of life, dear God, I pray, That I may live to say, The dog is dead!
Q. Eliz. O, thou didst prophesy, the time would
That I should wish for thee to help me curse That bottled spider, that foul bunch-back'd toad.
Q. Mar. I call'd thee then, vain flourish of my fortune;
I call'd thee then, poor shadow, painted queen;
Where be the bending peers that flatter'd thee?
For joyful mother, one that wails the name;
K. Rich. Ay; I thank God, my father, and your-
Duch. Then patiently hear my impatience.
That cannot brook the accent of reproof.
Duch. Art thou so hasty? I have staid for thee,
K. Rich. And came I not at last to comfort you?
call'd your grace To breakfast once, forth of my company. If I be so disgracious in your sight, Let me march on, and not offend you, madam.--Strike up the drum.
I pr'ythee, hear me speak.
Duch. Either thou wilt die, by God's just ordi
Thy prime of manhood, daring, bold, and ven-No turous;
Ere from this war thou turn a conqueror;
Q. Eliz. Though far more cause, yet much less
Q. Eliz. I have no more sons of the royal blood, For thee to murder: for my daughters, Richard,They shall be praying nuns, not weeping queens; And therefore level not to hit their lives.
Till it was whetted on thy stone-hard heart,
Thy age confirm'd, proud, subtle, sly, and bloody,
But that still5 use of grief makes wild grief tame,
K. Rich. 'Faith, none, but Humphrey Hour, that Till that my nails were anchor'd in thine eyes;
And I, in such a desperate bay of death,
K. Rich. Madam, so thrive I in my enterprize,
Q. Eliz. What good is cover'd with the face of
To be discover'd, that can do me good?
K. Rich. The advancement of your children, gentle lady.
Q. Eliz. Up to some scaffold, there to lose their heads?
K. Rich. You have a daughter call'd-Elizabeth,||
Q. Eliz. And must she die for this? O, let her live,
Q. Eliz. To save her life, I'll say-she is not so.
K. Rich. Lo, at their births good stars were opposite.
Q. Eliz. No, to their lives bad friends were contrary.
K. Rich. All unavoided4 is the doom of destiny.
My babes were destin'd to a fairer death,
Q. Eliz. Cousins, indeed; and by their uncle cozen'd
Of comfort, kingdom, kindred, freedom, life.
doubt the murderous knife was dull and
K. Rich. No, to the dignity and height of fortune, The high imperial type of this earth's glory.
Q. Eliz. Flatter my sorrows with report of it;
K. Rich. Even all I have; ay, and myself and all,
Thou drown the sad remembrance of those wrongs,
Last longer telling than thy kindness' date.
Q. Eliz. My daughter's mother thinks it with her
K. Rich. What do you think?
Q. Eliz. That thou dost love my daughter, from
So, from thy soul's love, didst thou love her brothers;
I mean, that with my soul I love thy daughter,
K. Rich. Even he, that makes her queen: Who
Q. Eliz. What, thou?
(5) Constant. (6) A crown. (7) Bequeath,
Even so: What think
of it, madam?
Q. Eliz. How canst thou woo her? K. Rich. That I would learn of you, As one being best acquainted with her humour. Q. Eliz. And wilt thou learn of me? K. Rich. Madam, with all my heart.
Q. Eliz. Send to her by the man that slew her brothers,
A pair of bleeding hearts; thereon engrave,
K. Rich. Say, that I did all this for love of her? Q. Eliz. Nay, then indeed, she cannot choose but have thee,
Having bought love with such a bloody spoil. K. Rich. Look, what is done cannot be now amended:
Men shall deal unadvisedly sometimes, Which after-hours give leisure to repent. If I did take the kingdom from your sons, To make amends, I'll give it to your daughter, If I have kill'd the issue of your womb, To quicken your increase, I will beget Mine issue of your blood upon your daughter. A grandam's name is little less in love, Than is the doting title of a mother; They are as children, but one step below, Even of your mettle, of your very blood; Of all one pain,-save for a night of groans Endur'd of her, for whom you bid like sorrow. Your children were vexation to your youth, But mine shall be a comfort to your age. The loss, you have, is but-a son being king, And, by that loss, your daughter is made queen. I cannot make you what amends I would, Therefore accept such kindness as I can. Dorset, your son, that, with a fearful soul, Leads discontented steps in foreign soil, This fair alliance quickly shall call home To high promotions and great dignity: The king, that calls your beauteous daughter-wife, Familiarly shall call thy Dorset-brother; Again shall you be mother to a king, And all the ruins of distressful times Repair'd with double riches of content. What! we have many goodly days to see: The liquid drops of tears that you have shed, Shall come again, transform'd to orient pearl; Advantaging their loan, with interest Of ten-times-double gain of happiness. Go then, my mother, to thy daughter, go; Make bold her bashful years with your experience; Prepare her ears to hear a wooer's tale; Put in her tender heart the aspiring flame Of golden sovereignty; acquaint the princess
(2) In the Levitical law, chap. xviii. 14.
With the sweet silent hours of marriage joys:
Would be her lord? Or shall I say, her uncle?
Q. Eliz. Which she shall purchase with still lasting war.
K. Rich. Tell her, the king, that may comm mmand,
Q. Eliz. That at her hands, which the king's King forbids.2
K. Rich. Say, she shall be a high and mighty
Q. Eliz. To wail the title, as her mother doth,
K. Rich. As long as Heaven, and nature lengthens it.
Q. Eliz. As long as hell, and Richard, likes of it. K. Rich. Say, I, her sovereign, am her subject low.
Q. Eliz. But she, your subject, loaths such sovereignty.
K. Rich. Be eloquent in my behalf to her. Q. Eliz. An honest tale speeds best, being plainly told.
K. Rich. Then, in plain terms tell her my loving tale.
Q. Eliz. Plain, and not honest, is too harsh a style. K. Rich. Your reasons are too shallow and too
Q. Eliz. O, no, my reasons are too deep and dead;
Too deep and dead, poor infants, in their graves. K. Rich. Harp not on that string, madam; that is past.
Q. Eliz. Harp on it still shall I, till heart-strings break.
K. Rich. Now, by my George, my garter,3 and my crown,
Q. Eliz. Profan'd, dishonour'd, and the third usurp❜d.
K. Rich, I swear. Q. Eliz. By nothing; for this is no oath, Thy George, profan'd, hath lost its holy honour; Thy garter, blemish'd, pawn'd his knightly virtue; Thy crown, usurp'd, disgrac'd his kingly glory: If something thou wouldst swear to be believ'd, Swear then by something that thou hast not wrong'd. K. Rich. Now by the world,Q. Eliz.
'Tis full of thy foul wrongs,
K. Rich. My father's death,-
Thy life hath that dishonour'd.
K. Rich. Why then, by God,-
God's wrong is most of all. If thou had'st fear'd to break an oath by him,
(3) The ensigns of the order of the Garter.
Thyself is self-misus'd.
The unity, the king thy brother made,
By the time to come. Q. Eliz. That thou hast wronged in the time o'erpast;
For I myself have many tears to wash
Ungovern'd youth, to wail it in their age:
K. Rich. As I intend to prosper, and repent!
Q. Eliz. But thou didst kill my children. K. Rich. But in your daughter's womb I bury them :
Where, in that nest of spicery,2 they shall breed Selves of themselves, to your recomforture.
Q. Eliz. Shall I go win my daughter to thy will? K. Rich. And be a happy mother by the deed. Q. Eliz. I go.-Write to me very shortly, And you shall understand from me her mind.
K. Rich. Bear her my true love's kiss, and so farewell. [Kissing her. Exit Q. Eliz. Relenting fool, and shallow, changing-woman! How now? what news?
Enter Ratcliff; Catesby following.
Rat. Most mighty sovereign, on the western coast Rideth a puissant navy; to the shore Throng many doubtful hollow-hearted friends, Unarm'd, and unresolv'd to beat them back : 'Tis thought, that Richmond is their admiral; And there they hull, expecting but the aid Of Buckingham, to welcome them ashore.
K. Rich. Some light-foot friend post to the duke of Norfolk :-Ratcliff, thyself,-or Catesby; where is he?
(1) Foolish. (2) The phoenix's nest.
Cate. Here, my good lord. K. Rich. Catesby, fly to the duke. Cate. I will, my lord, with all convenient haste. K. Rich. Ratcliff, come hither: Post to Salisbury; When thou com'st thither,-Dull unmindful villain, [To Catesby. Why stay'st thou here, and go'st not to the duke Cate. First, mighty liege, tell me your highness' pleasure,
What from your grace I shall deliver to him. K. Rich. O, true, good Catesby ;-Bid him levy straight
The greatest strength and power he can make,
[Exit. Rat. What, may it please you, shall I do at Salisbury?