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Why gape you for your sovereign's overthrow Will be my death; and welcome shall it be:
| To wretched men death is felicity. See, monsters, see! I'll wear my crown again. Leices. Another post! what news brings he ?
[Putting on the crown. K. Edw. Such news as I expect. — Come, What! fear you not the fury of your king ?
Berkeley, come, But, bapless Edward, thou art fondly-' led: And tell thy message to my naked breast. They pass ? not for thy frowns as late they did, Berk. My lord, think not a thought so vilBut seek to make a netr-elected king;
lanous Which fills my mind with strange despairing Can harbour in a man of noble birth. thoughts,
To do your highness service and devoir, Which thoughts are martyrèd with endless And save you from your foes, Berkeley would torments;
die. And in this torment comfort find I none,
Leices. My lord, the council and the queen But that I feel the crown upon my head;
commands And therefore let me wear it yet a while.
That I resign my charge. Trus. My lord, the parliament must have K. Edw. And who must keep me now? Must present news;
you, my lord ? And therefore say, will you resign or no?
Berk. Ay, my most gracious lord; so 'tis decreed.
[The King rageth. K. Edw. [ Taking the paper.) By Mortimer, K. Eduo. I'll not resign, but, whilst I live, be whose name is written here! king.
Well may I rent his name that rends my heart. Traitors, be gone, and join with Mortimer.
[Tears it. Elect, conspire, install, do what you will: This poor revenge hath something eas'd my Their blood and yours shall seal these treacheries.
mind: Bish. of Win. This answer we'll return; and So may his limbs be torn as is this paper! so, farewell.
Hear me, immortal Jove,' and grant it too! Leices. Call them again, my lord, and speak Berk. Your grace must hence with me to them fair;
Berkeley straight. For, if they go, the prince shall lose his right. K. Edw. Whither you will: all places are alike,|
K. Edw, Call thou them back; I have no And every earth is fit for burial. power to speak.
Leices. Favour him, my lord, as much as lieth Leices. My lord, the king is willing to resign. Bish. of Win. If he be not, let him choose. Berk. Even so betide my soul as I use him! K. Edro. Oh would I might! but heavens and
K. Edw. Mine enemy hath pitied my estate, earth conspire
And that's the cause that I am now remov'd. To make me miserable. Here, receive my crown.
Berk. And thinks your grace that Lerkeley Receive it? no, these innocent hands of mine will be cruel ? Shall not be guilty of so foul a crime:
K. Edw. I know not; but of this am I assurd, He of you all that most desires my blood,
That death ends all, and I can die but once.And will be call'd the murderer of a king, Leicester, farewell. Take it. What! are you mov'd ? pity you me?
Leices. Not yet, my lord; I'll bear you on your Then send for unrelenting Mortimer,
[Exeunt. And Isabel, whose eyes being turn’d to steel Will sooner sparkle fire than shed a tear.
Enter QUEEN ISABELLA and the younger MORTIMER. Yet stay; for, rather than I'll look on them, Y. Mor. Fair Isabel, now have we our desire; Here, here!-Now, sweet God of heaven,
The proud corrupters of the light-brain'd king Make me despise this transitory pomp,
Have done their homage to the lofty gallows, And sit for aye enthronized in heaven!
And he himself lies in captivity: Come, death, and with thy fingers close my eyes,
Be rul'd by me, and we will rule the realm : Or, if I live, let me forget myself!
In any case take heed of childish fear,
For now we hold an old wolf by the ears,
That, if he slip, will seize upon us both,
And gripe the sorer, being grip'd himself. K. Edw. Call me not lord; away, out of my Think therefore, madam, that [it] imports us sight!
much Ah, pardon me! grief makes me lunatic.
To erect your son with all the speed we may, Let not that Mortimer protect my son;
And that I be protector over him: More safety there is in a tiger's jaws
For our behoof, 'twill bear the greater sway Than his embracements. Bear this to the queen Whenas a king's name shall be under-writ. Wet with my tears, and dried again with sighs: 3 Q. Isab. Sweet Mortimer, the life of Isabel, If with the sight thereof she be not mov'd, Be thou persuaded that I love thee well ; Return it back, and dip it in my blood.
And therefore, so the prince my son be safe, Commend me to my son, and bid him rule Whom I esteem as dear as these mine eyes, Better than I: yet how have I transgress'd, Conclude against his father what thou wilt, Unless it be with too much clemency?
And I myself will willingly subscribe. Trus. And thus, most humbly do we take our
Y. Mor. First would I hear news he were leave.
depos'd, K. Edw. Farewell.
And then let me alone to handle him.
Letters! from whence ?
Mess. From Killingworth, my lord. fondly-foolishly; fond, i.e. fonned, comes from old English fonne, Scotch fon, to be foolish. 2 pass-care.
1 Jore-Jehovah, a not uncommon abbreviation of the 3 The king apparently is supposed to give a handker word with old writers. chief or some such thing here.
Q. Isab. How fares my lord the king ?
To ease his grief and work his liberty ; Mess. In health, madam, but full of pensive- And bear him this as witness of my love.
[Gires ring. Q. Isab. Alas, poor soul, would I could ease Mat. I will, madam. [Exit with GURNEY. his grief!
Y. Mor. Finely dissembled! do so still, sweet
queen. Enter the BISHOP OF WINCHESTER with the crown. Thanks, gentle Winchester.
Enter PRINCE EDWARD, and KENT talking uith him. Sirrah, be gone.
[Exit Messenger. Here comes the young prince with the Earl of Bish. of Win. The king hath willingly resign'd
Kent. his crown.
Q. Isab. Something he whispers in his childish Q. Isab. Oh, happy news! send for the prince my son.
Y. Mor. If he have such access unto the Bish. of Win. Further, or this letter was prince, seald, Lord Berkeley came,
Our plots and stratagems will soon be dash'd. So that he now is gone from Killingworth;
Q. Isab. Use Edmund friendly, as if all were And we have heard that Edmund laid a plot
well. To set his brother free; no more, but so.
Y. Mor. How fares my honourable Lord of The Lord of Berkeley is so pitiful
Kent ? As Leicester that had charge of him before.
Kent. In health, sweet Mortimer.-How fares Q. Isab. Then let some other be his guardian. your grace ?
Y. Mor. Let me alone; here is the privy-seal. Q. Isab. Well, if my lord your brother were Who's there? Call hither Gurney and Matrevis.- enlarg'd.
[To Attendants within. Kent. I hear of late he hath depos'd himself. To dash the heavy-headed Edmund's drift,
Q. Isab. The more my grief.
[Aside. Q. Isab. But, Mortimer, as long as he survives, Q. Isab. Sweet son, come hither; I must talk What safety rests for us or for my son ?
with thee. Y. Mor. Speak, shall he presently be despatch'd Y. Mor. You, being his uncle and the next of and die?
blood, Q. Isab. I would he were, so 'twere not by my Do look to be protector o'er the prince.
Kent. Not I, my lord: who should protect the
son, Enter MATREVIS 2 and GURNEY.
But she that gave him life? I mean the queen. Y. Mor. Enough. - Matrevis, write a letter P. Edw. Mother, persuade me not to wear the
presently Unto the Lord of Berkeley from ourself,
Let him be king; I am too young to reigo. That he resign the king to thee and Gurney; Q. Isab. But be content, seeing 'tis his highAnd, when 'tis done, we will subscribe our name. ness' pleasure. Mat. It shall be done, my lord.
P. Edw. Let me but see him first, and then I Y. Mor. Gurney
will. Gur. My lord ?
Kent. Ay, do, sweet nephew. Y. Mor. As thou intend'st to rise by Mortimer, Q. Isab. Brother, you know it is impossible. Who now makes Fortune's wheel turn as he P. Edw. Why, is he dead? please,
Q. Isab. No; God forbid ! Seek all the means thou canst to make him droop, Kent. I would those words proceeded from And neither give him kind word nor good your heart! look.
Y. Mor. Inconstant Edmund, dost thou favour Gur. I warrant you, my lord.
him, Y. Mor. And this above the rest : because we
That wast a cause of his imprisonment ? hear
Kent. The more cause have I now to make That Edmund casts 3 to work his liberty,
amends. Remove him still from place to place by night,
[aside to Q. ISAB.) Till at the last he come to Killing worth,
I tell thee, 'tis not meet that one so false And then from thence to Berkeley back again;
Should come about the person of a prince.And by the way, to make him fret the more,
My lord, he hath betray'd the king his brother, Speak curstly * to him; and in any case
And therefore trust him not. Let no man comfort him, if he chance to weep, P. Edw. But he repents, and sorrows for it But amplify: his grief with bitter words. Mat. Fear not, my lord; we'll do as you com
Q. Isab. Come, son, and go with this gentle mand.
lord and me. Y. Mor. So, now away! post thitherwards P. Edw. With you I will, but not with Moramain.
timer. Q. Isab. Whither goes this letter? to my lord Y. Mor. Why, youngling, 'sdain'st thou so of the king ?
Mortimer? Commend me humbly to his majesty,
Then I will carry thee by force away. And tell him that I labour all in vain
P. Edw. Help, uncle Kent! Mortimer will wrong me.
Q. Ysab, Brother Edmund, strive not; we are 1 Dyce places the erit of the Bishop of Winchester
his friends; here; neither his entrance nor exit is marked in the
Isabel is nearer than the Earl of Kent. old editions.
Kent. Sister, Edward is my charge ; redeem 2 Matreris-Sir John Maltravers.
him. 3 casts-contrives; we now speak of casting about.
curstly-crossly, ill-naturedly, shrewishly. s amplify is here used in its literal sense, to make large or larger, increase.
1 enlarg'd-sct at large.
Q. Isab. Edward is my son, and I will keep
Enter KENT. him. Kent. Mortimer shall know that he hath Mat. Guard the king sure; it is the Earl of wrongèd me.
Kent. Hence will I haste to Killingworth Castle,
K. Edw. Ob, gentle brother, help to rescue me. And rescue agèd Edward from his foes,
Mat. Keep them asunder: thrust in the king. To be reveng'd on Mortimer and thee.
Kent. Soldiers, let me but talk to him one [Exeunt omnes. word.
Gur. Lay hands upon the earl for his assault. Enter MATREVIS, GURNEY, and Soldiers, with
Kent. Lay down your weapons, traitors! yield KING Edward.
the king! Mat. My lord, be not pensive; we are your Mat. Edmund, yield thou thyself, or thou shalt friends:
die. Men are ordaind to live in misery;
Kent. Base villains, wherefore do you gripe me Therefore, come; dalliance dangereth our lives. thus? K. Edw. Friends, whither must unhappy Gur. Bind him, and so convey him to the court. Edward go?
Kent. Where is the court but here? Here is Will hateíul Mortimer appoint no rest ?
the king; Just I be vexèd like the nightly bird,
And I will visit him ; why stay you me ? Whose sight is loathsome to all winged fowls ? Mat. The court is where Lord Mortimer reWhen will the fury of his mind assuage ?
mains : When will his heart be satisfied with blood ? Thither shall your honour go; and so, farewell. If mine will serve, unbowel straight this breast,
[Exeunt MATREVIS and GURNEY And give my heart to Isabel and him:
with KING EDWARD. It is the chiefest mark they level at.
Kent. Oh, miserable is that commonweal, Gur. Not so, my liege: the queen bath given Where lords keep courts, and kings are locked in this charge,
prison ! To keep your grace in safety:
First Sold. Wherefore stay we? On, sirs, to the Your passions make you dolours to increase.
court! K. Edw. This usage makes my misery increase.
Kent. Ay, lead me whither you will, even to But can my air of life continue long,
my death, When all my senses are annoy'd with stench ?
Seeing that my brother cannot be releas'd. Within a dungeon England's king is kept,
[Exeunt. Where I am starv'd for want of sustenance; My daily diet is heart-breaking sobs,
Enter the younger MORTIMER. That almost rent the closet of my heart:
Y. Mor. The king must die, or Mortimer goes Thus lives old Edward not reliev'd by any,
down; And so must die, though pitiéd by many.
The commons now begin to pity him: Oh, water, gentle friends, to cool my thirst,
Yet he that is the cause of Edward's death, And clear my body from foul excrements!
Is sure to pay for it when his son's of age ; Mat. Here's channel-water, 2 as our charge is
And therefore will I do it cunningly. given :
This letter, written by a friend of ours, Sit down, for we'll be barbers to your grace.
Contains his death, yet bids them save his life. K. Edu. Traitors, away! What! will you
[Reads. murder me,
Edwardum occidere nolite timere, bonum est, Or choke your sovereign with puddle-water?
Fear not to kill the king, 'tis good he die : Gur. No, but wash your face, and shave away
But reads it thus, and that's another sense ; your beard,
Eduardum occidere nolite, timere bonum est, Lest you be kuown, and so be rescued.
Kill not the king, 'tis good to fear the worst.1 Mat. Why strive you thus ? your labour is in
Unpointed as it is, thus shall it go, vain. K. Edw. The wren may strive against the lion's That, being dead, if it chance to be found,
Matrevis and the rest may bear the blame, strength,
And we be quit that caus'd it to be done. But all in vain: so vainly do I strive
Within this room is lock'd the messenger To seek for mercy at a tyrant's hand.
That shall convey it, and perform the rest [They wash him with puddle-water, and And, by a secret token that he bears, shave his beard away.
Shall he be murder'd when the deed is done.
Art thou so resolute as thou wast? king!
Light. What else, my lord? and far more Oh Gaveston, it is for thee that I am wrong'd! resolute. For me, both thou and both the Spensers died; Y. Mor. And hast thou cast? how to accomAnd for your sakes a thousand wrongs I'll take. plish it? The Spensers' ghosts, wherever they remain, Light. Ay, ay; and none shall know which Wish well to mine; then, tush, for them I'll die.
way he died. Mat. 'Twixt theirs and yours shall be no Ý. Mor. But at his looks, Lightborn, thou wilt enmity.
l'It is said that King Edward, of Carnarvon, lying at Berkeley Castle prisoner, ! cardinal wrote to his keeper, Eduardum occidere noli, cimere bonum est, which being
read with the point at timere, cost the king his life.' — dolours-griefs.
Sir J. Harrington, quoted in Dodsley (ed. 1825). ? channel-water-kennel-water, water from the sewer. 2 cast-contrived.
Light. Relent! ha! ha! I use much to relent. Q. Isab. Lord Mortimer, now take him to your Y. Mor. Well, do it bravely, and be secret. charge.
Light. You shall not need to give instructions; Enter. Soldiers with Kent prisoner. 'Tis not the first time I have kill'd a man:
Y. Mor. What traitor have we there with I learn'd in Naples how to poison flowers; blades and bills? To strangle with a lawn thrust through the First Sold. Edmund the Earl of Kent. throat;
K. Edw. Third. What hath he done? To pierce the wind-pipe with a needle's point; First Sold. 'A would have taken the king away Or, whilst one is asleep, to take a quill
perforce, And blow a little powder in his ears ;
As we were bringing him to Killingworth. Or open his mouth, and pour quicksilver down. Y. Mor. Did you attempt his rescue Edmund ? But yet I have a braver way than these.
Speak. Y. Mor. What's that?
Kent. Mortimer, I did ; he is our king, Light. Nay, you shall pardon me; none shall And thou compell'st this prince to wear the know my tricks.
Y. Mor. I care not how it is, so it be not spied. Y. Mor. Strike off his head; he shall have Deliver this to Gurney and Matrevis:
[Gives letter. Kent. Strike off my head! base traitor, I defy At every ten-mile end thou hast a horse :
thee! Take this : away, and never see me more!
K. Edw. Third, My lord, he is my uncle, and Light. No?
shall live. Y. Mor. No; unless thou bring me news of Y. Mor. My lord, he is your enemy, and shall Edward's death.
die. Light. That will I quickly do. Farewell, my Kent. Stay, villains ! lord.
[Exit. K. Edw. Third. Sweet mother, if I cannot Y. Mor. The prince I rule, the queen do I pardon him, command,
Entreat my Lord Protector for his life. And with a lowly congè? to the ground
Q. Isab. Son, be content: I dare not speak å The proudest lords salute me as I pass;
word. I seal, 1 cancel, I do what I will.
K. Edw. Third. Nor I: and yet, methinks, I Fear'd am I more than lov'd ;-let me be fear'd, should command : And, when I frown, make all the court look pale. But, seeing I cannot, I'll entreat for him. I view the prince with Aristarchus'3 eyes, My lord, if you will let my uncle live, Whose looks were as a breeching' to a boy. I will requite it when I come to age. They thrust upon me the protectorship,
Y. Mor. 'Tis for your highness' good, and for And sue to me for that that I desire;
the realm's. While at the council-table, grave enough, How often shall I bid you bear him hence ? And not unlike a bashful Puritan,
Kent, Art thou king? must I die at thy comFirst I complain of embecility,
mand? Saying it is onus quam gravissimum ;8
Y. Mor. At our command. Once more, away Tiil, being interrupted by my friends,
with him. Suscepi that provinciam,o as they term it;
Kent. Let me but stay and speak; I will not And, to conclude, I am Protector now.
go: Now is all sure: the queen and Mortimer Either my brother or his son is king, Shall rule the realm, the king; and none rule us. And none of both them thirst for Edmund's Mine enemies will I plague, my friends advance;
blood : And what I list command who dare control? And therefore, soldiers, whither will you hale Major sum quàm cui possit fortuna nocere.?
me? And that this be the coronation-day,
[Soldiers hale KENT away, and carry him It pleaseth me and Isabel the queen.
to be beheaded. [Trumpets within. K. Edw. Third. What safety may I look for at The trumpets sound; I must go take my place. his hands,
If that my uncle shall be murder'd thus? Enter King EDWARD THE THIRD, QUEEN ISA
Q. Isab. Fear not, sweet boy; I'll guard thee BELLA, the ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY,
from thy foes: Champion, and Nobles.
Had Edmund liv'd, he would have sought thy Archb. of Cant. Long live King Edward, by
death. the grace of God
Come, son, we'll ride a-hunting in the park. King of England and Lord of Ireland!
K. Edw. Third. And shall my uncle Edmund Cham. If any Christian, Heathen, Turk, or
ride with us? Jew,
Q. Isab. He is a traitor; think not on him: Dares but affirm that Edward's not true king,
[Exeunt. And will avouch his saying with the sword, I am the Champion that will combat him.
Enter MATREVIS and GURNEY. Y. Mor. None comes : sound trumpets!
Mat. Gurney, I wonder the king dies not, K. Edw. Third. Champion, here's to thee. Being in a vault up to the knees in water,
To which the channels' of the castle run,
That were enough to poison any man, 1 laun-a towel, or something made of laun ?
Much more a king, brought up so tenderly. 2 congé-bow.
Gur. And so do I, Matrevis: yesternight 3 Aristarchus of Alexandria, who flourished about 150 I open'd but the door to throw him meat, B.C., was the most celebrated critic of antiquity.
And I was almost stifled with the savour. • brecching-whipping. 5.A burden inconceivably heavy.'
Mat. He hath a body able to endure 6 I have undertaken that office.' i 'I am too great for fortune to injure.'-OVID, Vet. vi. 195.
More than we can inflict: and therefore now So that, for want of sleep and sustenance,
My mind's distemper'd, and my body's numb’d, Gur. Send for him out thence, and I will anger and whether I have limbs or no I know not. him.
Oh, would my blood dropp'd out from every vein, Mat. But stay; who's this?
As doth this water from my tatter'd robes !
Tell Isabel the queen, I look'd not thus
When for her sake I ran at tilt in France, Light. My Lord Protector greets you.
And there unhors'd the Duke of Claremont.
[Gives letter. Light. Oh, speak no more, my lord ! this breaks Gur. What's here? I know not how to construe it.
Lie on this bed, and rest yourself a while. Mat. Gurney, it was left unpointed for the
K. Edw. These looks of thine can harbour ponce;'
naught but death: Eduardum occidere nolite timere,2
I see my tragedy written in thy brows. That's his meaning.
Yet stay a while; forbear thy bloody hand, Light. Know you this token? I must have the And let me see the stroke before it comes, king.
[Gives token. That even then when I shall lose my life, Mat. Ay, stay a while; thou shalt have answer My mind may be more stedfast on my God. straight.
Light What means your highness to mistrust This villain's sent to make away the king.
me thus? Gur. I thought as much.
K. Edw. What mean'st thou to dissemble with Mat. And, when the murder's done,
me thus ? See how he must be handled for his labour, -
Light. These hands were never stained with Pereat iste! Let himn have the king;
innocent blood, What else ?-Here is the keys, this is the lake : Nor shall they now be tainted with a king's. Do as you are commanded by my lord.
K. Edw. Forgive my thought for having such Light. I know what I must do. Get you away:
a thought. Yet be not far off; I shall need your help:
One jewel have I left; receive thou this: See that in the next room I have a fire,
Still fear I, and I know not what's the cause, And get me a spit, and let it be red-hot.
But every joint shakes as I give it thee. Mat. Very well.
Oh, if thou harbour's murder in thy heart, Gur. Need you anything besides?
Let this gift change thy mind, and save thy soul! Light. What else ? a table and a feather-bed.
Know that I am a king : oh, at that name Gur. That's all ?
I feel a hell of grief! Where is my crown? Light. Ay, ay: so, when I call you, bring it in.
Gone, gone! and do I remain alive? Mat. Fear not thou that.
Light. You're overwatch'd, my lord: lie down Gur. Here's a light to go into the dungeon.
[Exit with MATREVIS. K. Edw. But that grief keeps me waking, I Light. So now'
should sleep; Must I about this year: 5 ne'er was there any
For not theso ten days have these eyelids clos'd. So finely handled as this king shall be. Now, as I speak, they fall; and yet with fear Fob, here's a place indeed, with all my heart! VOpen again. Oh, wherefore sit'st thou here? K. Edw. Who's there? what light is that?
Light. If you mistrust me, I'll be gone, my lord. wherefore com’st thon?
K. Edw. No, no; for if thou mean'st to murder Light. To comfort you, and bring you joyful
Thou wilt return again; and therefore stay. K. Edv. Small comfort finds poor Edward in
[Sleeps. thy looks :
Light. He sleeps. Villain, I know thou com'st to murder me.
K. Edw. [waking.] Oh, let me not die! yet stay, Light. To murder you, my most gracious lord !
ob, stay a while ! Far is it from my heart to do you harm.
Light. How now, my lord! The queen sent ie to see how you were us'd,
K. Edw. Something still buzzeth in mine ears, For she relents at this your misery:
And tells me, if I sleep, I never wake: And what eyes can refrain from shedding tears,
This fear is that which makes me tremble thus; To see a king in this most piteous state ?
And therefore tell me, wherefore art thou come? K. Edw. Weep'st thou already ? list a while to Light. To rid thee of thy life.—Matrevis, come!
me, And then thy heart, were it as Gurney's is,
Enter MATREVIS and Gursey. Or as Matrevis', hewn from the Caucasus,
K. Edw. I am too weak and feeble to resist.Yet will it melt ere I have done my talo.
Assist me, sweet God, and receive my soul !
K. Edw. Oh, spare me, or despatch me in a Light. Oh, villains !
trice! K. Edw. And there, in mire and puddle, have Light. So, lay the table down, and stamp on it, I stood
But not too hard, lest that you bruise his body. This ten days' space, and, lest that I should LEDWARD is murdered by holding him down sleep,
on the bed with the table, and stamping on it.2 One plays continually upon a drum;
Mat. I fear me that this cry will raise the town, They give me bread and water, being a king;
And therefore let us take horse and away.
Light. Tell me, sirs, was it not bravely done?
Gur. Excellent well: take this for thy reward. for the nonce for the occasion. See note 5, p. 55,
[Stabs LIGIITBORX, who dies. 1st col.
2. Don't be afraid to slay Edward.' 3. Kill this fellow.'
Torerwatch'd-wearied with too much watching. So now, &c. Of course the scene is supposed to be 2 The 'red-hot spit,' with which Edward is said to changed to the dungeon in which Edward is contined. have been murdered, and which is mentioned above,
gear-business; Anglo-Saxon, girian, to prepare. seems not to have been produced on the stage.