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For I am rightful heir unto the crown.
Staf. Villain, thy father was a plasterer;
And thou thyself a shearman, art thou not?
Cade. And Adam was a gardener.

Bro. And what of that?

150

Cade. Marry, this: Edmund Mortimer, Earl of March,

Married the Duke of Clarence' daughter, did he not?

Staf. Aye, sir.

Cade. By her he had two children at one birth.
Bro. That's false.

Cade. Aye, there's the question; but I say, 'tis true:

The elder of them, being put to nurse,

Was by a beggar-woman stolen away;

And, ignorant of his birth and parentage, 160
Became a bricklayer when he came to age:
'His son am I; deny it, if you can.

Dick. Nay, 'tis too true; therefore he shall be king. Smith. Sir, he made a chimney in my father's house, and the bricks are alive at this day to testify it; therefore deny it not.

Staf. And will you credit this base drudge's words,

That speaks he knows not what?

All. Aye, marry, will we; therefore get ye gone. Bro. Jack Cade, the Duke of York hath taught

you this.

170

Cade. [Aside] He lies, for I invented it myself. Go to, sirrah, tell the king from me, that, for his father's sake, Henry the fifth, in whose

time boys went to span-counter for French
crowns, I am content he shall reign; but
I'll be protector over him.

Dick. And furthermore, we 'll have the Lord
Say's head for selling the dukedom of
Maine.

Cade. And good reason; for thereby is Eng- 180
land mained, and fain to go with a staff,
but that my puissance holds it up. Fellow
kings, I tell you that that Lord Say hath
gelded the commonwealth, and made it an
eunuch: and more than that, he can speak
French; and therefore he is a traitor.
Staf. O, gross and miserable ignorance!
Cade. Nay, answer, if you can: the Frenchmen
are our enemies; go to, then, I ask but this:
can he that speaks with the tongue of an 190
enemy be a good counsellor, or no?

All. No, no; and therefore we 'll have his head.
Bro. Well, seeing gentle words will not prevail,
Assail them with the army of the king.

Staf. Herald, away; and throughout every town
Proclaim them traitors that are up with Cade;
That those which fly before the battle ends
May, even in their wives' and children's sight,
Be hang'd up for example at their doors:
And you that be the king's friends, follow

me.

200

[Exeunt the two Staffords, and soldiers. Cade. And you that love the commons, follow me.

174. span-counter, a game, in which the object was to throw one counter within a span's distance of another.-C. H. H.

Now show yourselves men; 'tis for liberty.
We will not leave one lord, one gentleman:
Spare none but such as go in clouted shoon;
For they are thrifty honest men, and such

As would, but that they dare not, take our
parts.

Dick. They are all in order and march toward us. Cade. But then are we in order when we are most out of order. Come, march forward.

[Exeunt.

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SCENE III

Another part of Blackheath.

Alarums to the fight, wherein both the Staffords are slain. Enter Cade and the rest.

Cade. Where 's Dick, the butcher of Ashford?
Dick. Here, sir.

Cade. They fell before thee like sheep and oxen
and thou behavedst thyself as if thou hadst
been in thine own slaughter-house: therefore
thus will I reward thee, the Lent shall be
as long again as it is; and thou shalt have a
license to kill for a hundred lacking one.
Dick. I desire no more.

Cade. And, to speak truth, thou deservest no 10

8. "a hundred lacking one"; Malone, "a hundred lacking one, a week," from Qq. In the reign of Elizabeth butchers were not allowed to sell flesh-meat in Lent; by special licenses, however, a limited number of beasts might be killed each week.-I. G.

[graphic]

less. This monument of the victory will
I bear [putting on Sir Humphrey's brig-
andine]; and the bodies shall be dragged at
my horse heels till I do come to London,
where we will have the mayor's sword borne
before us.

Dick. If we mean to thrive and do good,
break open the jails and let out the pris-

oners.

Cade. Fear not that, I warrant thee. Come, 20 let's march toward London.

[Exeunt.

SCENE IV

London. The palace.

Enter the King with a supplication, and the Queen with Suffolk's head, the Duke of Buckingham and the Lord Say.

Queen. Oft have I heard that grief softens the mind,

And makes it fearful and degenerate;

Think therefore on revenge and cease to weep, But who can cease to weep and look on this? Here may his head lie on my throbbing breast: But where's the body that I should embrace? Buck. What answer makes your grace to the rebels' supplication?

10

King. I'll send some holy bishop to entreat;
For God forbid so many simple souls
Should perish by the sword! And I myself,

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Rather than bloody war shall cut them short,
Will parley with Jack Cade their general:
But stay, I'll read it over once again.

Queen. Ah, barbarous villains! hath this lovely face
Ruled, like a wandering planet, over me,

And could it not enforce them to relent, That were unworthy to behold the same? King. Lord Say, Jack Cade hath sworn to have thy head.

19

Say. Aye, but I hope your highness shall have his. King. How now, madam!

Still lamenting and mourning for Suffolk's death?

I fear me, love, if that I had been dead,

Thou wouldest not have mourn'd so much for

me.

Queen. No, my love, I should not mourn, but die for thee.

Enter a Messenger.

King. How now! what news? why comest thou in such haste?

Mess. The rebels are in Southwark; fly, my lord!
Jack Cade proclaims himself Lord Mortimer,
Descended from the Duke of Clarence' house,
And calls your grace usurper openly,
And vows to crown himself in Westminster.
His army is a ragged multitude

30

Of hinds and peasants, rude and merciless:
Sir Humphrey Stafford and his brother's death
Hath given them heart and courage to proceed:

22. Pope, "Lamenting still and mourning Suffolk's death?"—I. G.

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