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But that I was a journeyman to grief?
Gaunt. All places that the eye of Heaven visits,
Are to a wise man ports and happy havens :
Teach thy necessity to reason thus ;
There is no virtue like necessity.
Think not, the king did banish thee;
But thou the king: Woe doth the heavier sit,
Where it perceives it is but faintly borne.
Go, say I sent thee forth to purchase honour,
And not, the king exiled thee: or suppose,
Devouring pestilence hangs in our air,
And thou art flying to a fresher clime.
Look, what thy soul holds dear, imagine it
To lie that way thou go'st, not whence thou com'st.
Suppose the singing birds musicians;
The grass whereon thou tread'st, the presence* strew'd;
The flowers, fair ladies; and thy steps, no more Than a delightful measure or a dance :
For gnarling sorrow hath less power to bite
The man that mocks at it, and sets it light.
Boling. O, who can hold a fire in his hand,
By thinking on the frosty Caucasus ?
Or cloy the hungry edge of appetite,
By bare imagination of a feast?
Or wallow naked in December snow,
By thinking on fantastic summer's heat?
O, no! the apprehension of the good
Gives but the greater feeling to the worse:
Fell sorrow's tooth doth never rankle more,
Than when it bites, but lanceth not the sore.
Gaunt. Come, come, my son, I'll bring thee on
Had I thy youth and cause, I would not stay. Boling. Then England's ground, farewell; sweet soil, adieu;
My mother, and my nurse, that bears me yet!
Where'er I wander, boast of this I can,
Though banish'd, yet a true-born Englishman.
* Gnarling means growling.
SCENE. A Room in the Duke of LANCASTER'S | Consuming means, soon preys upon itself. Palace; the duke on a couch, YORK beside him.
This royal throne of kings, this scepter'd isle,
This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars,
Gaunt, Will the king come? that I may breathe This other Eden, demi-paradise;
In wholesome counsel to his unstaid youth.
York. Vex not yourself, nor strive not with your breath;
For all in vain comes counsel to his ear.
Gaunt. O, but they say, the tongues of dying men
Enforce attention, like deep harmony;
Where words are scarce, they are seldom spent in
For they breathe truth, that breathe their words in pain.
He, that no more may say, is listen'd more Than they whom youth and ease have taught to glose;
More are men's ends mark'd, than their lives before;
The setting sun, and music at the close (As the last taste of sweets is sweetest), last, Writ in remembrance, more than things long past; Though Richard my life's counsel would not hear, My death's sad tale may yet undeaf his ear. York. No; it is stopp'd with other flattering sounds,
As praises of his state: then, there are found Lascivious metres; to whose venom sound The open ear of youth doth always listen: Direct not him, whose way himself will choose; 'Tis breath thou lack'st, and that breath wilt thou lose.
Gaunt. Methinks I am a prophet new inspir'd; And thus, expiring, do foretell of him : His rash fierce blaze of riot cannot last; For violent fires soon burn out themselves; Light vanity, insatiate cormorant,
This fortress, built by nature for herself,
Against infection and the hand of war;
This happy breed of men, this little world;
This precions stone set in the silver sea,
Which serves it in the office of a wall,
Or as a moat defensive to a house,
Against the envy of less happier lands;
This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this
This nurse, this teeming womb of royal kings,
Fear'd by their breed, and famous for their birth,
Renowned for their deeds as far from home
(For Christian service, and true chivalry)
As is the sepulchre in stubborn Jewry
Of the world's ransom, blessed Mary's son:
This land of such dear souls, this dear dear land,
Dear for her reputation through the world,
Is now leas'd out (I die pronouncing it),
Like to a tenement or pelting farm:
England, bound in with the triumphant sea,
Whose rocky shore beats back the envious siege
Of watery Neptune, is now bound in with shame,
With inky blots, and rotten parchment bonds;
That England, that was wont to conquer others,
Hath made a shameful conquest of itself:
Ah, would the scandal vanish with my life,
How happy then were my ensuing death!
K. Rich. What comfort, man? How is't with
Gaunt. O, how that name befits my composition; Old Gaunt, indeed; and gaunt in being old: Within me grief hath kept a tedious fast;
And who abstains from meat, that is not gaunt? For sleeping England long time have I watch'd;
Watching breeds leanness, leanness is all gaunt:
The pleasure that some fathers feed upon
Is my strict fast,-I mean my children's looks;
And, therein fasting, hast thou made me gaunt;
Gaunt am I for the grave, gaunt as a grave,
Whose hollow womb inherits nought but bones.
K. Rich. Can sick men play so nicely with their
Gaunt. No, misery makes sport to mock itself: Since thou dost seek to kill my name in me, I mock my name, great king, to flatter thee. K. Rich. Should dying men flatter with those that live?
Gaunt. No, no; men living flatter those that die. K. Rich. Thou, now a dying, say'st thou flat
Gaunt. Oh! no; thou diest, though I the sicker be.
K. Rich. I am in health, I breathe, and see thee ill.
Gaunt. Now, He that made, me knows I see thee ill;
Ill in myself to see, and in thee seeing ill.
Thy death-bed is no lesser than the land
Wherein thou liest in reputation sick :
And thou, too careless patient as thou art,
Committ'st thy anointed body to the cure
Of those physicians that first wounded thee.
A thousand flatterers sit within thy crown,
Whose compass is no bigger than thy head;
And yet, incaged in so small a verge,
The waste is no whit lesser than thy land.
O, had thy grandsire, with a prophet's eye,
Seen how his son's son should destroy his sons,
From forth thy reach he would have laid thy shame,
Deposing thee before thou wert possess'd,
Which art possess'd now to depose thyself.
Why, cousin, wert thou regent of the world,
It were a shame to let this land by lease:
But, for thy world, enjoying but this land,
Is it no more than shame to shame it so ?
Landlord of England thou art, and not king:
Thy state of law is bondslave to the law;
| Convey me to my bed, then to my grave: Love they to live, that love and honour have. [Exit, torne out by his Attendants.
K. Rich. And thou a lunatic lean-witted fool, Presuming on an ague's privilege, Dar'st thou with thy frozen admonition Make pale our cheek; chasing the royal blood, With fury, from his native residence. Now by my seat's right royal majesty, Wert thou not brother to great Edward's son, This tongue, that runs so roundly in thy head, Should run thy head from thy unreverend shoulders. Gaunt. O, spare me not, my brother Edward's
For that I was his father Edward's son;
That blood already, like the pelican,
Hast thou tapp'd out, and drunkenly carous'd:
My brother Gloster, plain well-meaning soul,
(Whom fair befal in heaven 'mongst happy souls!)
May be a precedent and witness good,
That thou respect'st not spilling Edward's blood:
Join with the present sickness that I have;
And thy unkindness be like crooked age,
To crop at once a too-long wither'd flower.
Live in thy shame, but die not shame with thee!
These words hereafter thy tormenters be!-
K. Rich. And let them die, that age and sullens have:
For both hast thou, and both become the grave. York. I do beseech your majesty, impute his words
To wayward sickliness and age in him:
He loves you, on my life, and holds you dear
As Harry duke of Hereford, were he here.
K. Rich. Right: you say true: as Hereford's love, so his ;
As theirs, so mine; and all be as it is.
SCENE.-The wilds in Gloucestershire. BoLINGBROKE with army, enter YORK, attended. Boling. Here comes his grace in person. My gracious uncle. [Kneels.
York. Show me thy humble heart, and not thy knee,
Whose duty is deceivable and false.
Boling. My gracious uncle!
York. Tut, tut!
Grace me no grace, nor uncle me no uncle.
I am no traitor's uncle; and that word, grace,
In an ungracious mouth, is but profane.
Why have those banish'd and forbidden legs
Dar'd once to touch a dust of England's ground?
But then more why, Why have they dared to
So many miles upon her peaceful bosom,
Frighting her pale-fac'd villages with war,
And ostentation of despised arms?
Com'st thou because the anointed king is hence?
Why, foolish boy, the king is left behind,
And in my loyal bosom lies his power.
Were I but now the lord of such hot youth
As when brave Gaunt, thy father, and myself,
Rescued the Black Prince, that young Mars of men,
From forth the ranks of many thousand French,
O, then, how quickly should this arm of mine,
Now prisoner to the palsy, chastise thee,
And minister correction to thy fault!
Boling. My gracious uncle, let me know my
On what condition stands it, and wherein?
York. Even in condition of the worst degree,—
In gross rebellion and detested treason:
Thou art a banished man, and here art come
Before the expiration of thy time,
In braving arms against thy sovereign.*
Boling. As I was banish'd, I was banish'd
But as I come, I come for Lancaster.
And, noble uncle, I beseech your grace,
Look on my wrongs with an indifferent eye :
You are my father, for methinks in you
I see old Gaunt alive: 0, then, my father!
Will you permit that I shall stand condemn'd
A wand'ring vagabond; my rights and royalties
Pluck'd from my arms perforce, and given away
To upstart unthrifts? Wherefore was I born?
If that my cousin king be King of England,
It must be granted I am Duke of Lancaster.
You have a son, Aumerle, my noble kinsman
Had you first died, and he been thus trod down,
He should have found his uncle Gaunt a father,
To rouse his wrongs, and chase them to the bay.
I am denied to sue my livery here,
And yet my letters-patent give me leave:
My father's goods are all distrain'd and sold;
And these, and all, are all amiss employ'd.
What would you have me do? I am a subject,
And challenge law Attorneys are denied me;
And therefore personally I lay my claim
To my inheritance of free descent.
North. The noble duke hath been too much abus'd.
Ross. It stands your grace upon, to do him right. Willo. Base men by his endowments are made great.
York. My lords of England, let me tell you this,
I have had feeling of my cousin's wrongs,
And labour'd all I could to do him right:
But in this kind to come, in braving arms,
Be his own carver, and cut out his way,
To find out right with wrongs,-it may not be;
And you that do abet him in this kind,
Cherish rebellion, and are rebels all.
North. The noble duke hath sworn his coming is
But for his own: and, for the right of that,
We all have strongly sworn to give him aid;
And let him ne'er breathe that breaks that oath.
York. Well, well, I see the issue of these arms,
I cannot mend it, I must needs confess,
Because my power is weak, and all ill left:
But, if I could, by him that gave me life,
I would attach you all, and make you stoop
Unto the sovereign mercy of the king;
But, since I cannot, be it known to you,
I do remain as neuter. So fare you well;-
Unless you please to enter in the castle,
And there repose you for this night.
Boling. An offer, uncle, that we will accept. But we must win your grace to go with us To Bristol Castle: which, they say, is held By Bushy, Bagot, and their complices, The caterpillars of the commonwealth, Which I have sworn to weed and pluck away. York. It may be I'll go with you ;-but yet I'll
For I am loth to break our country's laws.
Nor friends, nor foes, to me welcome you are:
Things past redress are now with me past care.
SCENE.-The Coast of Wales. A Castle in view.
Flourish of 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?
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 ravenous 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 my bosom pluck a flower,
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 rebellion's 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 murthers 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 murthers, 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 revelled 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:
To lift shrewd steel against our golden crown,
For every man that Bolingbroke hath press'd,
Heaven for his Richard hath in heavenly pay
A glorious angel: then, if angels fight,
Weak men must fall; for Heaven still guards the
K. Rich. Needs must I like it well; I weep for Welcome, my lord; How far off lies your power?
Sal. Nor near, nor farther off, my gracious lord, Than this weak arm: Discomfort guides my
And bids me speak of nothing but despair. One day too late, I fear, my noble lord, 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
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,
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.
the blood of twenty thou
Aum. Comfort, my liege; remember who you
K. Rich. I had forgot myself: Am I not king? Awake thou sluggard majesty! thou sleepest. Is not the king's name forty thousand names? Arm, arm, my name! a puny subject strikes At thy great glory.-Look not to the ground, Ye favourites of a king. Are we not high? High be our thoughts: I know, my uncle York Hath power enough to serve our turn. But who Comes here?
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
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 dissolv'd to tears,
So high above his limits swells the rage
Of Bolingbroke, covering your fearful land
With hard bright steel, and hearts harder than
White beards have arm'd their thin and hairless scalp
Against thy majesty; and 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
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.
Seroop. Peace have they made with him, indeed,
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 Judases, 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
Let's talk of graves, of worms, and epitaphs;
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, our 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 depos'd:
Some poison'd by their wives, some sleeping kill'd;
All murther'd:-For within the hollow crown
That rounds the mortal temples of a king,
Keeps Death his court; and there the antic sits,
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 walls, and-farewell,
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
But presently prevent the ways to wail.
To fear the foe, since fear oppresses 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, inquire of him; And learn to make a body of a limb.
K. Rich, Thou chid'st me well :-Proud Boling- | Harry Bolingbroke, doth humbly kiss thy hand;
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
Scroop. Your uncle York is join'd with Boling-
And all your northern castles yielded up,
And all your southern gentlemen in arms
Upon his faction.
K. Rich. Beshrew thee, cousin, which didst lead me forth
Thou hast said enough.
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.
Aum. My liege, one word.
K. Rich. 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.
SCENE.-Wales. Before Flint Castle. Enter RICHARD, YORK, NORTHUMBERLAND, and
K. Rich. We were amaz'd; and thus long have we stood
To watch the fearful bending of thy knee,
[TO NORTH. 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 sceptre, 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
Should so with civil and uncivil arms
Be rush'd upon! Thy thrice-noble cousin,
And by the honourable tomb he swears,
That stands upon your royal grandsire's bones;
And by the royalties of both your blood,
Currents that spring from one most gracious head;
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
To look so poorly, and to speak so fair?
Shall we call back Northumberland, and send
Defiance to the traitor, and so die?
Aum. No, good my lord; let's fight with gentle words, [swords. Till time lend friends, and friends their helpful 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!
Aum. Northumberland comes back from Boling-
K. Rich. What must the king do now? Must
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 sceptre, 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