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And, by that virtue, no man dare accuse you. Gard. Mylord, because we have business of more moment, [pleasure, We will be short with you. 'Tis his highness' 5 And our consent, for better trial of you, From hence you be committed to the Tower; Where, being but a private man again, You shall know many dare accuse you boldly, More than, I fear, you are provided for. [thank you,


Cran. Ah, my good lord of Winchester, I You are always my good friend; if your will pass, I shall both find your lordship judge and juror, You are so merciful: I see your end,

D. Keep. My lord archbishop:

And has done half an hour, to know your pleasures.
Chan. Let him come in.


Tis my undoing: Love, and meekness, lord,
15 Become a churchman better than ambition;
Win straying souls with modesty again,
Cast none away. That I shall clear myself,
Lay all the weight ye can upon my patience,
I make as little doubt, as you do conscience
In doing daily wrongs. I could say more,
But reverence to your calling makes me modest.
Gard. My lord, my lord, you are a sectary,
That's the plain truth; yourpaintedgloss 'discovers,
To men that understand you, words and weakness.
Crom. My lord of Winchester, you are a little,
By your good favour, too sharp; inen so noble,
However faulty, yet should find respect
For what they have been: 'tis a cruelty,
To load a falling man.

Gard. Good master Secretary,

D. Keep. Your grace may enter now,
[Cranmer approaches the council table.
Chan. My good lord archbishop, I am very sorry
To sit here at this present, and behold
That chair stand empty: But we all are men,
In our own natures frail; and capable
Of our flesh, few are angels: out of which frailty,
And want of wisdom, you, that best should teach us,
Have misdemean'd yourself, and not a little,
Toward the king first,then his laws, in filling [lains',
The whole realm,by your teaching, and your chap-125|
(For so we are inform'd) with new opinions,
Divers, and dangerous; which are heresies,
And, not reform'd, may prove pernicious.

Gard. Which reformation must be sudden too,
My noble lords: for those, that tame wild horses, 30
Pace'em not in their hands to make 'em gentle;
But stop their mouths with stubborn bits, and spur
'Till they obey the manage. If we suffer ['em,
(Out of our easiness, and childish pity

Crom. Not sound?

Gard. Not sound, I say.

To one man's honour) this contagious sickness, 35 Of this new sect? ye are not sound.
Farewell all physic: And what follows then?
Commotions, uproars, with a general taint
Of the whole state: as, of late days, our neighbours,
The upper Germany, can dearly witness,
Yet freshly pitied in our memories.

Crom. 'Would you were half so honest!


Men's prayers then would seek you, not their fears.
Gard. I shall remember this bold language.
Crom. Do:

Cran. My good lords, hitherto, in all the progress
Both of my life and office, I have labour'd,
And with no little study, that my teaching,
And the strong course of my authority,
Might go one way, and safely; and the end
Was ever, to do well: nor is there living
(I speak it with a single heart, my lords,)
A man, that more detests, more stirs against,
Both in his private conscience, and his place,
Defacers of a public peace, than I do.
Pray heaven, the king may never find a heart
With less allegiance in it! Men, that make
Envy, and crooked malice, nourishment,
Dare bite the best. I do beseech your lordships,
That, in this case of justice, my accusers,
Be what they will, may stand forth face to face,
And freely urge against me.

Suf. Nay, my lord,

That cannot be; you are a counsellor,

I cry your honour mercy; you may, worst
Of all this table, say so.

Crom. Why, my lord?

Gard. Do not I know you for a favourer

Remember your bold life too.

Cham. This is too much;
Forbear, for shame, my lords,
Gard. I have done.
Crom. And I.

Chan. Then thus for you, my lord,-It stands
I take it, by all voices, that forthwith
You be conveyed to the Tower a prisoner;
50 There to remain, 'till the king's further pleasure
Be known unto us: Are you all agreed, lords?
All. We are.


Cran. Is there no other way of mercy,

But I must needs to the Tower, my lords?


Gard. What other
Would you expect? You are strangely trouble-
Let some o' the guard be ready there.
Enter Guard.
Cran. For me?

i This lord chancellor, though a character, has hitherto had no place in the Dramatis Persona. In the last scene of the fourth act, we heard that Sir Thomas More was appointed lord chancellor: but it is not he, whom the poet here introduces. Wolsey, by command, delivered up the seals on the 18th of November, 1529; on the 25th of the same month, they were delivered to Sir Thomas More, who surrender'd them on the 16th of May, 1532. Now the conclusion of this scene taking notice of queen Elizabeth's birth (which brings it down to the year 1534), Sir Thomas Audlie must necessarily be our poet's chancellor; who succeeded Sir Thomas More, and held the seals many years. Meaning, perhaps, Few are perfect, while they remain in their mortal capacity. i. e. your fair outside. Must


Must I go like a traitor thither?
Gard. Receive him,

And see him safe i' the Tower.

Cran. Stay, good my lords,

I have a little yet to say. Look there, my lords;
By virtue of that ring, I take my cause
Out of the gripes of cruel men, and give it
To a most noble judge, the king my master.
Cham. This is the king's ring.
Sur. 'Tis no counterfeit.

of ye,
I see,

Not as a groom: There's some
More out of malice than integrity,

Would try him to the utmost, had ye mean;
Which ye shall never have, while I ́live.
Chan. Thus far,


My most dread sovereign, may it like your grace
Tolet my tongue excuse all. What was purpos'd,
Concerning his imprisonment, was rather

(If there be faith in men) meant for his trial,
10 And fair purgation to the world, than malice :
I am sure, in me.

Suf. 'Tis the right ring, by heaven: I told ye all, When we first put this dangerous stone a-rolling, 'Twould fall upon ourselves.

Nor. Do you think, my lords,
The king will suffer but the little finger
Of this man to be vex'd?

Cham. 'Tis now too certain:

How much more is his life in value with him?
'Would I were fairly out on't.

Crom. My mind gave me,
In seeking tales, and informations,
Against this man, (whose honesty the devil
And his disciples only envy at,),
Ye blew the fire that burns ye: Now have at ye.
Enter King, frowning on them; takes his scat.
Gard. Dread sovereign,how much are we bound
to heaven

King. Well, well, my lords, respect him;
Take him and use him well, he's worthy of it.
I will say thus much for him, If a prince
15 May be beholden to a subject, I

Am, for his love and service, so to him.
Make me no more ado, but all embrace him;
Be friends, for shame, my lords.—My lord of Can-

20I have a suit which you must not deny me:
There is a fair young maid, that yet wants baptism;
You must be godfather, and answer for her.


Cran. The greatest monarch now alivemay glory
In such an honour; How may I deserve it,
That am a poor and humble subject to you?
King. Come, come, my lord, you'd spare your
spoons': you shall have
Two noble partners with you: the old dutchess of
And lady marquis Dorset;Willthese please you?—
30 Once more, my lord of Winchester, I charge you,
Embrace and love this man.

In daily thanks, that gave us such a prince;
Not only good and wise, but most religious:
One that, in all obedience, makes the church
The chief aim of his honour; and, to strengthen
That holy duty, out of dear respect,
His royal self in judgement comes to hear
The cause betwixt her and this great offender!
King. You were ever good at sudden com-35

Gard. With a true heart,

And brother's love, I do it.
Cran. And let heaven

Witness how dear I hold this confirmation.


King. Good man, those joyful tears shew thy
The common voice, I see, is verified [true heart.
Ofthee, which says thus, Do my lord of Canterbury
A shrewd turn, and he is your friend for ever.—
Come, lords, we trifle time away; I long
To have this young one made a christian.
As I have made ye one, lords, one remain;
So I growstronger, you more honour gain.[Exeunt.

Bishop of Winchester. But know, I come not
To hear such flatteries now, and in my presence;
They are too thin and base to hide offences.
To me you cannot reach: You play the spaniel,
And think with wagging of your tongue to win me;
But, whatsoe'er thou tak'st me for, I'm sure,
Thou hast a cruel nature, and a bloody.-
Good man, sit down. Now let me see the proudest
[To Cranmer.45
He, that dares most, but wag his finger at thee:
By all that's holy, he had better starve,
Than but once think this place becomes thee not.
Sur. May it please your grace,—
King. No, sir, it does not please me.

I had thought, I had men of some understanding
And wisdom, of my council; but I find none.
Was it discretion, fords, to let this man,
This good man, (few of you deserve that title)
This honest man, wait like a lowsy foot-boy
At chamber door? and one as great as you are?
Why, what a shame was this! Did my commission
Bid ye so far forget yourselves? I gave ye
Power as he was a counsellor to try him,

The Palace Yard.
Noise and tumult within: Enter Porter and his Man.
Port. You'll leave your noise anon, ye rascals:
Do you take the court for Paris-garden? ye rude
slaves, leave your gaping.

Within. Good master porter, I belong to the larder.

Port. Belong to the gallows, and be hang'd, you rogue. Is this a place to roar in-Fetch me a dozen crab-tree staves, and strong ones; these are 55 but switches to 'em.-I'll scratch your heads; You must be seeing christenings? Do you look for ale and cakes here, you rude rascals?

Man. Pray, sir, be patient; 'tis as much impossible


'Mr. Steevens says, "It was the custom, long before the time of Shakspeare, for the sponsors at christenings to offer gilt spoons as a present for the child. These spoons were called apostle spoons, be cause the figures of the apostles were carved on the tops of the handles. Such as were at once opulent and generous, gave the whole twelve; those who were either more moderately rich or liberal, escaped at the expence of the four evangelists; or even sometimes contented themselves with presenting one spoon only, which exhibited the figure of any saint in honour of whom the child received its name." ? The bear-garden of that time, and in a line with Bridewell.


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(Unless we sweepthem fromthedoor with cannons)
To scatter 'em, as 'tis to make 'em sleep
On May-day morning'; which will never be:
We may as well push against Paul's, as stir 'em.
Port. How got they in, and be hang'd?
Man. Alas, I know not; How gets the tide in
As much as one sound cudgel of four foot
(You see the poor remainder) could distribute,
I made no spare, sir.

to endure. I have some of 'em in Limbo Patrum, and there they are like to dance these three days; besides the running banquet of two beadles, that

is to come.

Enter the Lord Chamberlain.

Cham. Mercy o' me, what a multitude are here! They grow still too; from all parts theyare coming, As if we kept a fair! Where are these porters, These lazy knaves?--Ye have made a fine hand, fellows.

Port. You did nothing, sir.


Man. I am not Sampson, nor Sir Guy, nor Colbrand', to mow 'em down before me: but, if I spar'd any, that had a head to hit, either young or old, he or she, cuckold or cuckold-maker, let me never hope to see a chine again; and that I would 15 not for a cow, God save her.

Within. Do you hear, master Porter?

Port. I shall be with you presently, good master puppy. Keep the door close, sirrah.

Man. What would you have me do?

Port. What should you do, but knock 'em down by the dozens? Is this Morefields to muster in? or have we some strange Indian with the great tool come to court, the women so besiege us? Bless me, what a cry of fornication is at door! 25 O' my christian conscience, this one christening will beget a thousand: here will be father, godfather, and all together.

There's a trim rabble let in: Are all these [have
Your faithful friends o'the suburbs? We shall
Great store of room, no doubt, left for the ladies,
When they pass back from the christening.

Port. Please your honour,

We are but men; and what so many may do,
Not being torn a-pieces, we have done :
An army cannot rule 'em.

Cham. As I live,

20 If the king blame me for 't, I'll lay ye all

By the heels, and suddenly; and on your heads
Clap round fines, for neglect: You are lazy knaves;
And here ye lie baiting of bumbards', when
Ye should do service. Hark, the trumpets sound;
They are come already from the christening:
Go, break among the press, and find a way out
To let the troop pass fairly; or I'll find
AMarshalsea,shall holdyou play thesetwo months.
Port. Make way there for the princess!
Man. You great fellow, stand close up, or I'll
make your head ake.

Port. You i' the camblet, get up o' the rail; I'll
peck you o'er the pales else.
The Palace.
EnterTrumpets,sounding; then two Aldermen, Lord
Mayor, Garter, Cranmer, Duke of Norfolk with
his Marshal's staff, Duke of Suffolk, two Noble-
men bearing two great standing bowls for the
christening gifts; then four Noblemen bearing a
canopy, under which the Dutchess of Norfolk,
godmother, bearing the child richly habited in a
mantle, c. Train borne by a Lady: then follow the
Murchioness of Dorset, the other godmother, and
Ladies. The troop pass once about the stage, and
Garter speaks.-

Gar. Heaven, from thy endless goodness, send prosperous life, long, and ever happy, to the high and mighty princess of England, Elizabeth! Flourish. Enter King, and Train. Cran. [Kneeling]. And to your royal grace, and the good queen,

Port.These are the youths thatthunder at a playhouse, and fight for bitten apples'; that no audience, but the tribulation of Tower-hill', or the limbs of Limehouse, their dear brothers, are able/55/Heaven ever laid up to make parents happy,

My noble partners, and myself, thus pray;—
All comfort, joy, in this most gracious lady,


Man. The spoons will be the bigger, sir. There is a fellow somewhat near the door, he should be 30 a brasier by his face, for, o' my conscience, twenty of the dog-days now reign in's nose; all that stand about him are under the line, they need no other penance: that fire-drake* did I hit three times on the head, and three times was his nose 35 discharg'd against me; he stands there like a mortar-piece,to blow us up. There was a haberdasher's wife of small wit near him, that rail'd upon nie 'till her pink'd porringer fell off her head, for kindling such a combustion in the state. I miss'd40 the meteor' once, and hit that woman, who cry'd out, clubs! when I might see from far some forty trunchioneers draw to her succour, which were the hope of the strand, where she was quarter'd. They fell on; I made good my płace; at length 45 they came to the broomstaff with ine, I defy'd'em still; when suddenly a file of boys behind 'em,loose shot, deliver'd such a shower of pebbles, that I was fain to draw mine honour in, and let 'em win the work: the devil was amongst 'em, I think, 50 surely.




It was anciently the custom for all ranks of people to go out a-maying on the first of May. Of Guy of Warwick every one has heard.—Colbrand was the Danish giant, whom Guy subdued at Win chester. A brasier signifies a man that manufactures brass, and a reservoir for charcoal occasionally heated to convey warmth. Both these senses are here understood. A fire-drake is both a serpent, an ciently called a brenning-drake, or dipsas, and a name formerly given to a Willo' th' Wisp, or ignis fatuus. A fire-drake was likewise an artificial firework. 'i.e. the brasier. The prices of seats for the vulgar in our ancient theatres were so very low (viz. a penny, tro-pence, and six-pence, each, for the ground, gallery, and rooms:-the boxes were somewhat higher, being a shilling and half-a-crown), that we cannot wonder if they were filled with the tumultuous company described by Shakspeare in this scene; especially when it is added, that tobacco was smoaked, and ale drunk in them. Dr. Johnson suspects the Tribulation to have been a puritanical meeting-house. A public whipping. To bait bumbards is to tipple, to lie at the spigot. Bumbards were large vessels in which the beer was carried to soldiers upon duty: they reseinbled black jacks of leather.



May hourly fall upon ye!

King. Thank you, good lord archbishop: What is her name!

Cran. Elizabeth.

Cran. Amen.


King. My noble gossips, ye have been too pro-
I thank ye heartily; so shall this lady,
When she has so much English.

Cran. Let me speak, sir,

In her days, every man shall eat in safety,
Under his own vine, what he plants; and sing
The merry songs of peace to all his neighbours:
God shall be truly known; and those about her 35
From her shall read the perfect way of honour,
And by those claim their greatness, not by blood.
[Nor shall this peacesleep with her: But as when
The bird of wonder dies, the maiden phoenix,
Her ashes new create another heir,


King.Stand up,lord.—[The King kissesthe child.
With this kiss take my blessing: God protect thee!
Into whose hand I give thy life.

Who, from the sacred ashes of her honour,
Shall star-like rise, as great in fame as she was,
And so standfix'd: Peace,plenty,love,truth,terror,
That were the servants to this chosen infant,
Shall then be his, and like a vine grow to him;
10 Wherever the bright sun of heaven shall shine,
His honour, and the greatness of his name,
Shall be, and make new nations: He shall flourish,
And, like a mountain cedar, reach his branches
To all the plains about him :--Our children's chil-
Shall see this, and bless heaven.


For heaven now bids me; and the words I utter
Let none think flattery, for they'll find 'em truth.
This royal infant, (heaven still move about her !)
Though in her cradle, yet now promises
Upon this land a thousand thousand blessings,
Which time shall bring to ripeness: She shall be
(But few now living can behold that goodness)
A pattern to all princes living with her,
And all that shall succeed: Sheba was never
More covetous of wisdom, and fair virtue,
Than this pure soul shall be: all princely graces,
That mould up such a mighty piece as this is,
With all the virtues that attend the good,
Shall still be doubled on her : truth shall nurse her,
Holy and heavenly thoughts still counsel her:
She shall be lov'd, and fear'd: Her own shall bless
Her foes shake like a field of beaten corn, [her,
And hang their heads with sorrow: Good grows 30 I thank ye all.To you, my good lord mayor,

King. Thou speakest wonders.]
Cran. She shall be, to the happiness of England,
An aged princess; many days shall see her,
And yet no day without a deed to crown it.
20 Would I had known no more! but she must die,
She must, the saints must have her; yet a virgin,
A most unspotted lily shall she pass

To the ground, and all the world shall mourn her.
King. O lord archbishop,

25 Thou hast made me now a man; never, before
This happy child, did I get any thing:
This oracle of comfort has so pleas'd me,
That, when I am in heaven, I shall desire
To seewhat this child does, andpraise my Maker.-

with her:

And your good brethen, I am much beholden;
I have receiv'd much honour by your presence,
And ye shall find me thankful.
Lead the way,


Ye must all see the queen, and she must thank ye,
She will be sick else. This day, no man think"
He has business at his house; for all shall stay,
This little one shall make it holy-day.



TIS ten to one this play can never please

All that are here: Some come to take their ease,
And sleep an act or two; but those, we fear,
We've frighted with our trumpets; so, 'tis clear,
They'll say, 'tis naught: others, to hear the city
Abus'd extremely, and to cry,—that's witty!
Which we have not done neither: that, I fear,
All the expected good we are like to hear

As great in admiration as herself;
So shall she leave her blessedness to one,

(When heaven shall call her from this cloud of


For this play at this time, is only in
The merciful construction of good women;
For such a one we shew'd'em*: If they smile,
50 And say, 'twill do, I know, within a while

All the best men are ours; for 'tis ill hap,
If they hold, when their ladies bid 'em clap.


These lines, to the interruption by the king, seem to have been inserted at some revisal of the play, after the accession of king James. Theobald remarks, that the transition here from the complimentary address to king James the first is so abrupt, that it seems to him, that compliment was inserted after the accession of that prince. If this play was written, as in his opinion it was, in the reign of queen Elizabeth, we may easily determine where Cranmer's eulogium of that princess concluded. He makes no question but the poet rested here:

And claim by those their greatness, not by blood.

All that the bishop says after this, was an occasional homage paid to her successor, and evidently in-
serted after her demise.
Dr. Johnson is of opinion, with other Critics, that both the Prologue
and Epilogue to Henry VIII, were written by Ben Jonson. In the character of Katharine.


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TITUS LARTIUS, Generals against the Volscians.
MENENIUS AGRIPPA, friend to Coriolanus.
SICINIUS VELUTUS,Tribunes of the people.

Young MARCIUS, Son to Coriolanus.
Conspirators with Aufidius.
VOLUMNIA, Mother to Coriolanus.
VIRGILIA, Wife to Coriolanus
VALERIA, Friend to Virgilia.
Roman and Volscian Senators, Ædiles, Lictors,
Soldiers, Common People, Servants to Aufi-
dius, and other Attendants.

TULLUS AUFIDIUS, General of the Volscians.
Lieutenant to Aufidius.

The SCENE1 is partly in Rome; and partly in the Territories of the Volscians and Antiates.

A C T I.

away, away.

2 Cit. One word, good2 citizens.

we become rakes': for the gods know, I speak this in hunger for bread, not in thirst for revenge.

2 Cit. Would you proceed especially against Caius Marcius?

All. Against him first: he's a very dog to the commonalty.

2 Cit. Consider you what services he has done for his country?

1 Cit. Very well; and could be content to give 10 him good report for 't, but that he pays himself with being proud.

All. Nay, but speak not maliciously.

1 Cit. I say unto you, what he hath done famously, he did it to that end: though soft-conscienc'd men can be content to say, it was for his country, he did it to please his mother, and to be partly proud; which he is even to the altitude of his virtue.


A Street in Rome.

Entera Company of mutinous Citizens,with staves, clubs, and other weapons.


1 Cit. BEFORE we proceed any further, hear
me speak.
Alt. Speak, speak.

1 Cit. You are resolv'd rather to die, than to famish?

All. Resolv'd, resolv'd.

1 Cit. First, you know, Caius Marcius is chief enemy to the people.

All. We know, 't, we know 't,

1 Cit. Let us kill him, and we'll have corn at our own price. Is 't a verdict?


All. No more talking on't; let it be done:

1 Cit. We are accounted poor citizens; the pa-20 tricians, good; What authority surfeits on, would relieve us: If they would yield us but the superfluity, while it were wholesome, we might guess, they relieved us humanely: but they think, we are too dear: the leanness that afflicts us, the 25 object of our misery, is as an inventory to particularize their abundance; our sufferance is a gain to them.-Let us revenge this with our pikes, erc

2 Cit. What he cannot help in his nature, you account a vice in him: You must in no way say, he is covetous.

1 Cit. If I must not, I need not be barren of accusations; he hath faults, with surplus, to tire in repetition. [Shouts within.] What shouts are these? The other side o' the city is risen: Why stay we prating here? to the Capitol

All. Come, come.

1 Cit. Soft; who comes here?

The whole history is exactly followed, and many of the principal speeches exactly copied from the Life of Coriolanus in Plutarch. 2 Good is here used in the mercantile sense. 'Alluding to the proverb, as lean as a rake; which perhaps owes its origin to the thin taper form of the instrument made use of by hay-makers. Dr. Johnson observes, that Rakel, in Islandick, is said to mean a cur-dog, and this was probably the first use among us of the word rake.—As lean as a rake is, therefore, as lean as a dog too worthless to be fed.



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