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Untainted, unexamin'd, free, at liberty.
Here's a good world the while!-Who is so gross,
That cannot see this palpable device?
Yet who so bold, but says he sees it not?
Bad is the world; and all will come to nought,
When such bad dealing must be seen in thought'.
And stand between two churchmen, good my lord;
For on that ground I'll make a holy descant:
And be not easily won to our requests;
Play the maid's part, still answer nay, and take it.
Glo. I go; and if you plead as well for them,
As I can say nay to thee for myself;
No doubt we'll bring it to a happy issue.
Buck. Go, go, up to the leads; the lord mayor
Enter the Lord Mayor, and Citizens.
Welcome, my lord: I dance attendance here;
think, the duke will not be spoke withal.—
Now, Catesby, what says your lord to my request?
Cates. He doth entreat your grace, iny noble
Enter Gloster, and Buckingham, at several doors.
Glo. How now, how now? what say the citi-
Buck. Now by the holy mother of our Lord,
The citizens are mum, say not a word. [dren: 15
Glo. Touch'd you the bastardy of Edward's chil-
Buck. I did; with his contract with lady Lucy,
And his contract by deputy in France:
The insatiate greediness of his desires,
And his enforcement of the city wives;
His tyranny for trifles; his own bastardy,—
As being got, your father then in France,
And his resemblance being not like the duke.
Withal, I did infer your lineaments,-
Being the right idea of your father,
Both in your form and nobleness of mind:
Laid open all your victories in Scotland,
Your discipline in war, wisdom in peace,
Your bounty, virtue, fair humility;
Indeed, left nothing, fitting for your purpose,
Untouch'd, or slightly handled, in discourse.
And, when my oratory grew toward end,
I bade them, that did love their country's good,
Cry-"God save Richard, England's royal king!"
Glo. And did they so?
Be not you spoke with, but by mighty suit.
And look you get a prayer-book in your hand,
To visit him to-morrow, or next day:
He is within, with two right reverend fathers,
20 Divinely bent to meditation;
And in no worldly suit would he be mov'd,
To draw him from his holy exercise.
Buck. Return, good Catesby, to the gracious
Tell him, myself, the mayor and aldermen,
In deep designs, in matter of great moment,
No less importing than our general good,
Are come to have some conference with his grace.
Cates. I'll signify so much unto him straight.
Buck. Ah, ha, my lord, this prince is not an
He is not lolling on a lewd day-bed,
But on his knees at meditation;
Buck. No, so God help me, they spake not a
But, like dumb statues, or unbreathing stones,
Star'd on each other, and look'd deadly pale.
Which when I saw, I reprehended them;
Not dallying with a brace of courtezans,
But meditating with two deep divines;
Not sleeping, to engross his idle body,
praying, to enrich his watchful soul:
Happy were England, would this virtuous prince
Take on himself the sovereignty thereof:
And ask'd the mayor, what meant this wilful 40 But, sure, I fear, we shall ne'er win him to it.
Mayor. Marry, God defend his grace should
say us nay!
Buck. I fear, he will: here Catesby comes
Catesby, what says your lord? [sembled
Cates. He wonders to what end you have as
Such troops of citizens to come to him,
His grace not being warn'd thereof before:
He fears, my lord, you mean no good to him.
Buck. Sorry I am, my noble cousin should
Suspect me, that I mean no good to him:
By heaven, we come to him in perfect love;
And so once more return and tell his grace.
His answer was, the people were not us❜d
To be spoke to, but by the recorder.
Then he was urg'd to tell my tale again;-
Thus saith the duke, thus hath the duke inferr'd;
But nothing spoke in warrant from himself.
When he had done, some followers of mine own,
At lower end o' the hall, hurl'd up their caps,
And some ten voices cry'd, God save king Richard!
And thus I took the vantage of those few,-
Thanks, gentle citizens, and friends, quoth I;
This general applause, and chearful shout,
Argues your wisdom, and your love to Richard:
And even here brake off, and came away.
Glo. What tongueless blocks were they; would 55
they not speak?
Will not the mayor then, and his brethren, come?
Buck. The mayor is here at hand; intend 2 some
When holy and devout religious men
Are at their beads, 'tis hard to draw them thence:
So sweet is zealous contemplation.
Enter Gloster above, between two Bishops. Catesby
Mayor. See, where his grace stands 'tween
two clergymen !
2 i, e. pretend.
1i. e. seen in silence, without notice or detection. pamper.
i. e. to fatten; to
Buck. Two props of virtue for a christian prince,
To stay him from the fall of vanity:
And, see, a book of prayer in his hand;
True ornaments to know a holy man.—
Famous Plantagenet, most gracious prince,
Lend favourable ear to our requests;
And pardon us the interruption
Of thy devotion, and right-christian zeal.
Glo. My lord, there needs no such apology;
I rather do beseech you pardon me,
Who, earnest in the service of my God,
Deferr'd the visitation of my friends.
But, leaving this, what is your grace's pleasure?
Buck. Even that, I hope, which pleaseth God
And that my path were even to the crown,
As the ripe revenue and due of birth;
Yet so much is my poverty of spirit,
So mighty, and so many, my defects,
5 That I would rather hide me from my greatness,~~~
Being a bark to brook no mighty sea,—
Than in my greatness covet to be hid,
And in the vapour of my glory smother'd.
But God be thank'd, there is no need of me;
10(And much I need to help you, if need were ;)
The royal tree hath left us royal fruit,
Which, mellow'd by the stealing hours of time,
Will well become the seat of majesty,
And make, no doubt, us happy by his reign.
On him I lay what you would lay on me,
The right and fortune of his happy stars,-
Which God defend that I should wring from him!
Buck. My lord, this argues conscience in your
But the respects thereof are nice and trivial,
All circumstances well considered.
You say, that Edward is your brother's son;
So say we too, but not by Edward's wife:
For first was he contract to lady Lucy,
Your mother lives a witness to his vow;
And afterwards by substitute betroth'd
To Bona, sister to the king of France.
These both put by, a poor petitioner,
A care-craz'd mother to a many sons,
30 A beauty-waning and distressed widow,
Even in the afternoon of her best days,
Made prize and purchase of his wanton eye,
Seduc'd the pitch and height of all his thoughts
To base declension and loath'd bigamy:
And all good men of this ungovern'd isle.
Glo. I do suspect, I have done some offence,
That seems disgracious in the city's eye;
And that you come to reprehend my ignorance.
Buck. You have, my lord; would it might 20
please your grace,
On our entreaties, to amend your fault!
Glo. Elsewherefore breathe I in a christian land:
Buck. Know, then, it is your fault, that you re-
The supreme seat, the throne majestical, [sign 25
The scepter'd office of your ancestors,
Your state of fortune, and your due of birth,
The lineal glory of your royal house,
To the corruption of a blemish'd stock:
Whilst, in the mildness of your sleepy thoughts,
(Which here we waken to our country's good)
The noble isle doth want her proper limbs;
Her face defac'd with scars of infamy,
Her royal stock graft with ignoble plants,
And almost shoulder'd' in the swallowing gulph 35 By her, in his unlawful bed, he got
Of dark forgetfulness and deep oblivion.
Which to recure 2, we heartily solicit
Your gracious self to take on you the charge
And kingly government of this your land:
Not as protector, steward, substitute,
Or lowly factor for another's gain;
But as successively, from blood to blood,
Your right of birth, your empery, your own.
For this, consorted with the citizens,
Your very worshipful and loving friends,
And by their vehement instigation,
In this just suit come I to move your grace.
Glo. I cannot tell, if to depart in silence,
Or bitterly to speak in your reproof,
Best fitteth my degree, or your condition:
For, not to answer, you might haply think,
Tongue-ty'd ambition, not replying, yielded
To bear the golden yoke of sovereignty,
Which fondly you would here impose on me;
If to reprove you for this suit of yours,
So season'd with your faithful love to me,
Then, on the other side, I check'd my friends,
Therefore, to speak, and to avoid the first;
And then, in speaking, not to incur the last,—
Definitively thus I answer you.
Your love deserves my thanks; but my desert
Unmeritable, shuns your high request.
First, if all obstacles were cut away,
i. e. immersed up to the shoulders.
This Edward, whom our manners call-the prince.
More bitterly could I expostulate,
Save that, for reverence to some alive,
I give a sparing limit to my tongue.
40 Then, good my lord, take to your royal self
This proffer'd benefit of dignity:
If not to bless us and the land withal,
Yet to draw forth your noble ancestry
From the corruption of abusing time,
45 Unto a lineal true-derived course.
Mayor. Do, good my lord; your citizens entreat
Buck. Refuse not, mighty lord, this proffer'd
Cates. O, make them joyful, grant their lawful
Glo. Alas, why would you heap these cares on
I am unfit for state and majesty :-
I do beseech you, take it not amiss;
I cannot, nor I will not, yield to you.
Buck. If you refuse it, as in love and zeal,
55 Loth to depose the child, your brother's son;
(As well we know your tenderness of heart,
And gentle, kind, effeminate remorse 3,
Which we have noted in you to your kindred.
And equally, indeed, to all estates ;)
60 Yet know, whe'r you accept our suit or no,
Your brother's son shall never reign our king;
But we will plant some other in the throne,
To the disgrace and downfall of your house.
i. e. pity.
i. e. recover.
Then bring me to their sights; I'll bear thy blame,
And take thy office from thee, on my peril.
Brak. No, madam, no, I may not leave it so;
Before the Tower.
Enter the Queen, Dutchess of York, and Marquis 30
of Dorset, at one door; Anne Dutchess of Gloster,|
leading Lady Margaret Plantagenet, Clarence's
young daughter, at the other.
From all the impure blots and stains thereof;
For God doth know, and you may partly see,
How far I am from the desire of this.
Dutch. WHO meets us here?-my niece
Led in the hand of her kind aunt of Gloster?
Now, for my life, she's wand'ring to the Tower,
On pure heart's love, to greet the tender prince.-
Daughter, well met.
Anne. God give your graces both
A happy and a joyful time of day!
Queen. As much to you, good sister!
Anne. No further than the Tower;
Upon the like devotion as yourselves,
To gratulate the gentle princes there.
Queen. Kind sister, thanks; we'll enter all toge-
and, as I
And, in good time, here the lieutenant comes.-
Master lieutenant, pray you, by your leave,
How doth the prince, and my young son of York: 50
Brak. Right well, dear madam: By your patience,
I may not suffer you to visit them;
The king hath strictly charg'd the contrary.
Queen. The king! who's that?
Brak, I mean, the lord protector.
Queen. The lord protect him from that kingly
Hath he set bounds between their love and me?
I am their mother, Who shall bar me from them?
Dutch, I am their father's mother, I will see them.
Anne. Their aunt am I in law, in love their 60
Mayor. God bless your grace! we see it, and will say it.
Glo. In saying so, you shall but say the truth. Buck. Then I salute you with this royal title,— Long live king Richard, England's worthy king! [crown'd? Buck. To-morrow may it please you to be Glo. Even when you please, for you will have it so. Buck.To-morrow then we will attend your grace; And so, most joyfully, we take our leave. Glo. [To the Clergymen.] Come, let us to our holy work again ::
Farewell, good cousin ;-farewell, gentle friends. [Exeunt.
am bound by oath, and therefore pardon me. [Exit Brakenbury. Enter Stanley. [hence, Stan. Let me but meet you, ladies, one hour And I'll salute your grace of York as mother, And reverend looker-on, of two fair queens.Come, madam, you must straight to Westminster, [To the Dutchess of Gloster. 35 There to be crowned Richard's royal queen. Queen. Ah, cut my lace asunder!
That my pent heart may have some scope to beat,
Or else I swoon with this dead-killing news.
Anne. Despightful tidings! O unpleasing news!
Dor. Be of good chear:-Mother, how fares
Queen. O Dorset, speak not to me, get thee
Death and destruction dog thee at the heels;
Thy mother's name is ominous to children:
If thou wilt out-strip death, go cross the seas,
And live with Richinond, from the reach of hell.
Go, hie thee, hie thee from this slaughter-house,
Lest thou increase the number of the dead;
And make me die the thrall of Margaret's curse,-
Nor mother, wife, nor England's counted queen,
Stanl. Full of wise care is this your counsel,
Take all the swift advantage of the hours:
You shall have letters from me to my son
In your behalf, to meet you on the way:
Be not ta'en tardy by unwise delay.
Dutch. O ill-dispersing wind of misery!-
my accursed womb, the bed of death;
A cockatrice hast thou hatch'd to the world,
Whose unavoided eye is murderous!
Stan. Come, madam, come; I in all haste was
Anne. And I with all unwillingness will go.-
O, would to God, that the inclusive verge
Of golden metal, that must round my brow,
Were red-hot steel, to sear me to the brain1!
Anointed let me be with deadly venom;
And die, ere men can say-God save the queen!
Queen. Go, go, poor soul, I envy not thy glory; To feed my humour, wish thyself no harm. Anne. No! why?-When he, that is my hus
Came to me, as I follow'd Henry's corse; [hands,
When scarce the blood was well wash'd from his
Which issued from my other angel husband,
And that dead saint which then I weeping follow'd;
O, when, I say, I look'd on Richard's face,
This was my wish,-Be thou, quoth I, accurs'd,
For making me, so young, so old a widow!
And, when thou wed'st, let sorrow haunt thy bed; 15
And be thy wife (if any be so mad)
More miserable by the life of thee,
Than thou hast made me by my dear lord's death!
Lo, ere I can repeat this curse again,
E'en in so short a space, my woman's heart
Grossly grew captive to his honey words,
And prov'd the subject of mine own soul's curse:
Which ever since hath held mine eyes from rest;
For never yet one hour in his bed
Did I enjoy the golden dew of sleep,
But with his timorous dreams was still awak'd.
Besides, he hates me for my father Warwick;
And will, no doubt, shortly be rid of me.
Queen. Poor heart,adieu; I pity thy complaining.
Anne. No more than with my soul I mourn for 30
Dor. Farewell, thou woeful welcomer of glory!
Anne. Adieu,poorsoul, thou tak'st thy leave of it!
Dutch. Go thou to Richmond, and good fortune
[To Dorset. 35
Go thou to Richard, and good angels tend thee!-
Go thou to sanctuary, and good thoughts possess
[To the Queen.
I to my grave, where peace and rest lie with me! 40
Eighty odd years of sorrow have I seen,
And each hour's joy wreck'd with a week of teen2.
Queen. Stay yet; look back, with me, unto the
Pity, you ancient stones, those tender babes,
Whom envy hath immur'd within your walls!
Rough cradle for such little pretty ones!
Rude ragged nurse! old sullen play-fellow
For tender princes, use my babies well!
So foolish sorrow bids your stones farewell.
And thy assistance, is king Richard seated:~~
But shall we wear these glories for a day?
Or shall they last, and we rejoice in them?
Buck. Still live they, and for ever let them last!
K. Rich. Ah, Buckingham, now do I play the
Totry if thou be current gold indeed:- [speak.
Young Edward lives;-Think now what I would
Buck. Say on, my loving lord.
K. Rich. Why, Buckingham, I say, I would be
Buck. Why, so you are, my thrice-renowned
K. Henry. Ha! am I king? 'tis so: but Edward
Buck. True, noble prince.
K. Rich. O bitter consequence, [prince!--
That Edward still should live-True! noble
Cousin, thou wast not wont to be so dull:-
Shall I be plain? I wish the bastards dead;
And I would have it suddenly perform'd.
20 What say'st thou now? speak suddenly, be brief.
Buck. Your grace may do your pleasure.
K.Rich. Tut, tut, thou art all ice, thy kindness
Say, have Lthy consent, that they shall die?
Buck. Give me some breath, some little pause,
Before I positively speak in this : [dear lord,
I will resolve your grace immediately.
Cates. The king is angry; see, he gnaws his lip.
K. Rich. I will converse with iron-witted fools,
And unrespective boys; none are for me,
That look into me with considerate eyes:-
High-reaching Buckingham grows circumspect.--
Flourish of trumpets. Enter Richard, as King,
Buckingham, Catesby, a Page, and others.
K. Rich. Stand all apart.-Cousin of Bucking-
Buck. My gracious sovereign. [ham,-
K. Rich. Give me thy hand. Thus high, by thy
Page. My lord.
K.Rich.Know'st thou not any, whom corrupting
Would tempt unto a close exploit' of death?
Page. I know a discontented gentleman,
Whose humble means match not his haughty
Gold were as good as twenty orators,
And will, no doubt, tempt him to any thing.
K. Rich. What is his name?
Page. His name, my lord, is-Tyrrel.
K. Rich. I partly know the man: Go, call him
The deep-revolving witty Buckingham
No more shall be the neighbour to my counsels:
Hath he so long held out with me untir'd,
And stops he now for breath?-Well, be it so.~
How now, lord Stanley? what's the news?
Stan. Know, my loving lord,
The marquis Dorset, as I hear, is fled
To Richmond, in the parts where he abides.
K. Rich. Come hither, Catesby: rumour is
That Anne my wife is very grievous sick;
I will take order for her keeping close.
Enquire me out some mean-born gentleman,
punishing a regicide, viz. by placing a crown of
This seems to allude to the ancient mode of iron heated red-hot, upon his head. 2 i.e. sorrow. To play the touch, means, to represent the touchstone. i.e. inattentive, inconsiderate. si.e. secret act. 6 Witty implies in this place judicious, or cunning. A wit was not in our author's time employed to signify a man of fancy, but was used for wisdom or judgement.
Whom I will marry straight to Clarence' daugh-
The boy is foolish, and I fear not him. [ter:-
Look, how thou dream'st!-I say again, give out,
That Anne my queen is sick, and like to die:
About it; for it stands me much upon,
To stop all hopes, whose growth may damage
I must be marry'd to my brother's daughter,
Or else my kingdom stands on brittle glass :—
Murder her brothers, and then marry her!
Uncertain way of gain! But I am in
So far in blood, that sin will pluck on sin.
Tear-falling pity dwells not in this eye.-
Is thy name-Tyrrel?
Tyr. James Tyrrel, and your most obedient
K. Rich. Art thou, indeed?
Tyr. Prove me, my gracious lord.
K. Rich. Dar'st thou resolve to kill a friend of
Tyr. Please you, but I had rather kill two ene-200,
K. Rich. Why, then thou hast it; two deep ene-
Foes to my rest, and my sweet sleep's disturbers,
Are they that I would have thee deal upon :
Tyrrel, I mean those bastards in the Tower.
Tyr. Let me have open means to come to them,
And soon I'll rid you from the fear of them.
K. Rich. Thou sing'st sweet music. Hark,
come hither, Tyrrel;
Go, by this token :-Rise, and lend thine ear:
There is no more but so :-Say, it is done,
And I will love thee, and prefer thee for it.
Tyr. I will dispatch it straight.
Buck. My lord, I have consider'd in my mind
The late demand that you did sound me in.
K. Rich. Well, let that rest. Dorset is fled to
Buck. I hear the news, my lord. [Richmond.
K. Rich. Stanley, he is your wife's son:-Well,
look to it.
Buck. My lord, I claim the gift, my due by pro-
For which your honour and your faith is pawn'd;
The earldom of Hereford, and the moveables,
Which you have promised I shall possess.
K.Rich.Stanley, look to your wife,if she convey
Letters to Richmond, you shall answer it.
Buck. Whatsays your highness tomyjust request?
K. Rich. I do remember me,-Henry the sixth
Did prophesy, that Richmond should be king, 50
When Richmond was a little peevish boy.
Buck. My lord,--
[that time K. Rich. How chance, the prophet could not at Have told me, I being by, that I should kill him Buck. My lord, your promise for the earldom,--K. Rich. Richmond!--When last I was at Exeter, The mayor in court'sy shew'd me the castle, And call'd it---Rouge-mont: at which name, I
Because a bard of Ireland told me once,
I should not live long after I saw Richmond.
Buck. My lord,---
K. Rich. Ay, what's o'clock?
Buck. I am thus bold to put your grace in mind Of what you promis'd me.
K. Rich. Well, but what's o'clock?
Buck. Upon the stroke of ten.
K. Rich. Well, let it strike.
Buck. Why let it strike?
K. Rich. Because that, like a Jack', thou keep'st the stroke
Betwixt thy begging and my meditation.
am not in the giving vein to-day. [or no.
Buck. Why, then resolve me whe'r you will
K. Rich. Thou troublest me; I am not in the
Buck. Is it even so? repays he my deep service
With such contempt? made I him king for this
let me think on Hastings; and be gone
To Brecknock, while my fearful head is on. [Exit.
Tyr. The tyrannous and bloody act is done;
The most arch deed of piteous massacre,
That ever yet this land was guilty of!
Dighton, and Forrest, whom I did suborn
To do this piece of ruthless butchery,
30 Albeit they were flesh'd villains, bloody dogs,
Melting with tenderness and mild compassion,
Wept like two children, in their deaths' sad story
O thus, quoth Dighton, lay the gentle babes ;-
Thus, thus, quoth Forrest, girdling one another
35 Within their alabaster innocent arms:
Their lips were four red roses on a stalk,
Which, in their summer beauty, kiss'd each other.
A book of prayers on their pillow lay;
hichonce, quoth Forrest,almost chang'd my mind?
But, O, the devil-there the villain stopp'd;
When Dighton thus told on,—we smothered
The most replenished sweet work of nature,
That, from the prime creation, ere she framʼd.—
Hence both are gone with conscience and remorse,
45 They could not speak; and so I left them both,
To bear these tidings to the bloody king.
Enter King Richard.
And here he comes:---All health, my sovereign
K. Rich. Kind Tyrrel! am I happy in thy news?
Tyr. If to have done the thing you gave in charge
Beget your happiness, be happy then,
For it is done.
K.Rich. But didst thou see them dead?
Tyr. I did, my lord.
K. Rich. And buried, gentle Tyrrel?
Tyr.The chaplain of the Tower hathburiedthem;
But where, to say the truth, I do not know.
K.Rich.Come to me, Tyrrel, soon after supper, 60 When thou shalt tell the process of their death.
An image like those at St. Dunstan's church in Fleet-street, and at the market-houses at several towns in this kingdom, was usually called a Jack of the clock-house.-Perhaps these figures were called Jacks, because the engines of that name which turn the spit were anciently ornamented with such a puppet.