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The Tragedie of Richard the Third by William Shakespeare

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That he could gnaw a crust at two houres old,
'Twas full two yeares ere I could get a tooth.
Grandam, this would haue beene a byting Iest

Dut. I prythee pretty Yorke, who told thee this?
Yor. Grandam, his Nursse

Dut. His Nurse? why she was dead, ere y wast borne

Yor. If 'twere not she, I cannot tell who told me

Qu. A parlous Boy: go too, you are too shrew'd

Dut. Good Madam, be not angry with the Childe

Qu. Pitchers haue eares.
Enter a Messenger.

Arch. Heere comes a Messenger: What Newes?
Mes. Such newes my Lord, as greeues me to report

Qu. How doth the Prince?
Mes. Well Madam, and in health

Dut. What is thy Newes?
Mess. Lord Riuers, and Lord Grey,
Are sent to Pomfret, and with them,
Sir Thomas Vaughan, Prisoners

Dut. Who hath committed them?
Mes. The mighty Dukes, Glouster and Buckingham

Arch. For what offence?
Mes. The summe of all I can, I haue disclos'd:
Why, or for what, the Nobles were committed,
Is all vnknowne to me, my gracious Lord

Qu. Aye me! I see the ruine of my House:
The Tyger now hath seiz'd the gentle Hinde,
Insulting Tiranny beginnes to Iutt
Vpon the innocent and awelesse Throne:
Welcome Destruction, Blood, and Massacre,
I see (as in a Map) the end of all

Dut. Accursed, and vnquiet wrangling dayes,
How many of you haue mine eyes beheld?
My Husband lost his life, to get the Crowne,
And often vp and downe my sonnes were tost
For me to ioy, and weepe, their gaine and losse.
And being seated, and Domesticke broyles
Cleane ouer-blowne, themselues the Conquerors,
Make warre vpon themselues, Brother to Brother;
Blood to blood, selfe against selfe: O prepostorous
And franticke outrage, end thy damned spleene,
Or let me dye, to looke on earth no more

Qu. Come, come my Boy, we will to Sanctuary.
Madam, farwell

Dut. Stay, I will go with you

Qu. You haue no cause

Arch. My gracious Lady go,
And thether beare your Treasure and your Goodes,
For my part, Ile resigne vnto your Grace
The Seale I keepe, and so betide to me,
As well I tender you, and all of yours.
Go, Ile conduct you to the Sanctuary.


Actus Tertius. Scoena Prima.

The Trumpets sound.

Enter yong Prince, the Dukes of Glocester, and Buckingham, Lord
with others.

Buc. Welcome sweete Prince to London,
To your Chamber

Rich. Welcome deere Cosin, my thoughts Soueraign
The wearie way hath made you Melancholly

Prin. No Vnkle, but our crosses on the way,
Haue made it tedious, wearisome, and heauie.
I want more Vnkles heere to welcome me

Rich. Sweet Prince, the vntainted vertue of your yeers
Hath not yet diu'd into the Worlds deceit:
No more can you distinguish of a man,
Then of his outward shew, which God he knowes,
Seldome or neuer iumpeth with the heart.
Those Vnkles which you want, were dangerous:
Your Grace attended to their Sugred words,
But look'd not on the poyson of their hearts:
God keepe you from them, and from such false Friends

Prin. God keepe me from false Friends,
But they were none

Rich. My Lord, the Maior of London comes to greet
Enter Lord Maior.

Lo.Maior. God blesse your Grace, with health and
happie dayes

Prin. I thanke you, good my Lord, and thank you all:
I thought my Mother, and my Brother Yorke,
Would long, ere this, haue met vs on the way.
Fie, what a Slug is Hastings, that he comes not
To tell vs, whether they will come, or no.
Enter Lord Hastings.

Buck. And in good time, heere comes the sweating

Prince. Welcome, my Lord: what, will our Mother
Hast. On what occasion God he knowes, not I;
The Queene your Mother, and your Brother Yorke,
Haue taken Sanctuarie: The tender Prince
Would faine haue come with me, to meet your Grace,
But by his Mother was perforce with-held

Buck. Fie, what an indirect and peeuish course
Is this of hers? Lord Cardinall, will your Grace
Perswade the Queene, to send the Duke of Yorke
Vnto his Princely Brother presently?
If she denie, Lord Hastings goe with him,
And from her iealous Armes pluck him perforce

Card. My Lord of Buckingham, if my weake Oratorie
Can from his Mother winne the Duke of Yorke,
Anon expect him here: but if she be obdurate
To milde entreaties, God forbid
We should infringe the holy Priuiledge
Of blessed Sanctuarie: not for all this Land,
Would I be guiltie of so great a sinne

Buck. You are too sencelesse obstinate, my Lord,
Too ceremonious, and traditionall.
Weigh it but with the grossenesse of this Age,
You breake not Sanctuarie, in seizing him:
The benefit thereof is alwayes granted
To those, whose dealings haue deseru'd the place,
And those who haue the wit to clayme the place:
This Prince hath neyther claym'd it, nor deseru'd it,
And therefore, in mine opinion, cannot haue it.
Then taking him from thence, that is not there,
You breake no Priuiledge, nor Charter there:
Oft haue I heard of Sanctuarie men,
But Sanctuarie children, ne're till now

Card. My Lord, you shall o're-rule my mind for once.
Come on, Lord Hastings, will you goe with me?
Hast. I goe, my Lord.

Exit Cardinall and Hastings.

Prince. Good Lords, make all the speedie hast you may.
Say, Vnckle Glocester, if our Brother come,
Where shall we soiourne, till our Coronation?
Glo. Where it think'st best vnto your Royall selfe.
If I may counsaile you, some day or two
Your Highnesse shall repose you at the Tower:
Then where you please, and shall be thought most fit
For your best health, and recreation

Prince. I doe not like the Tower, of any place:
Did Iulius Csar build that place, my Lord?
Buck. He did, my gracious Lord, begin that place,
Which since, succeeding Ages haue re-edify'd

Prince. Is it vpon record? or else reported
Successiuely from age to age, he built it?
Buck. Vpon record, my gracious Lord

Prince. But say, my Lord, it were not registred,
Me thinkes the truth should liue from age to age,
As 'twere retayl'd to all posteritie,
Euen to the generall ending day

Glo. So wise, so young, they say doe neuer liue long

Prince. What say you, Vnckle?
Glo. I say, without Characters, Fame liues long.
Thus, like the formall Vice, Iniquitie,
I morallize two meanings in one word

Prince. That Iulius Csar was a famous man,
With what his Valour did enrich his Wit,
His Wit set downe, to make his Valour liue:
Death makes no Conquest of his Conqueror,
For now he liues in Fame, though not in Life.
Ile tell you what, my Cousin Buckingham

Buck. What, my gracious Lord?
Prince. And if I liue vntill I be a man,
Ile win our ancient Right in France againe,
Or dye a Souldier, as I liu'd a King

Glo. Short Summers lightly haue a forward Spring.
Enter young Yorke, Hastings, and Cardinall.

Buck. Now in good time, heere comes the Duke of

Prince. Richard of Yorke, how fares our Noble Brother?
Yorke. Well, my deare Lord, so must I call you now

Prince. I, Brother, to our griefe, as it is yours:
Too late he dy'd, that might haue kept that Title,
Which by his death hath lost much Maiestie

Glo. How fares our Cousin, Noble Lord of Yorke?
Yorke. I thanke you, gentle Vnckle. O my Lord,
You said, that idle Weeds are fast in growth:
The Prince, my Brother, hath out-growne me farre

Glo. He hath, my Lord

Yorke. And therefore is he idle?
Glo. Oh my faire Cousin, I must not say so

Yorke. Then he is more beholding to you, then I

Glo. He may command me as my Soueraigne,
But you haue power in me, as in a Kinsman

Yorke. I pray you, Vnckle, giue me this Dagger

Glo. My Dagger, little Cousin? with all my heart

Prince. A Begger, Brother?
Yorke. Of my kind Vnckle, that I know will giue,
And being but a Toy, which is no griefe to giue

Glo. A greater gift then that, Ile giue my Cousin

Yorke. A greater gift? O, that's the Sword to it

Glo. I, gentle Cousin, were it light enough

Yorke. O then I see, you will part but with light gifts,
In weightier things you'le say a Begger nay

Glo. It is too weightie for your Grace to weare

Yorke. I weigh it lightly, were it heauier

Glo. What, would you haue my Weapon, little Lord?
Yorke. I would that I might thanke you, as, as, you
call me

Glo. How?
Yorke. Little

Prince. My Lord of Yorke will still be crosse in talke:
Vnckle, your Grace knowes how to beare with him

Yorke. You meane to beare me, not to beare with me:
Vnckle, my Brother mockes both you and me,
Because that I am little, like an Ape,
He thinkes that you should beare me on your shoulders

Buck. With what a sharpe prouided wit he reasons:
To mittigate the scorne he giues his Vnckle,
He prettily and aptly taunts himselfe:
So cunning, and so young, is wonderfull

Glo. My Lord, wilt please you passe along?
My selfe, and my good Cousin Buckingham,
Will to your Mother, to entreat of her
To meet you at the Tower, and welcome you

Yorke. what, will you goe vnto the Tower, my Lord?
Prince. My Lord Protector will haue it so

Yorke. I shall not sleepe in quiet at the Tower

Glo. Why, what should you feare?
Yorke. Marry, my Vnckle Clarence angry Ghost:
My Grandam told me he was murther'd there

Prince. I feare no Vnckles dead

Glo. Nor none that liue, I hope

Prince. And if they liue, I hope I need not feare.
But come my Lord: and with a heauie heart,
Thinking on them, goe I vnto the Tower.

A Senet. Exeunt Prince, Yorke, Hastings, and Dorset.

Manet Richard, Buckingham, and Catesby.

Buck. Thinke you, my Lord, this little prating Yorke
Was not incensed by his subtile Mother,
To taunt and scorne you thus opprobriously?
Glo. No doubt, no doubt: Oh 'tis a perillous Boy,
Bold, quicke, ingenious, forward, capable:
Hee is all the Mothers, from the top to toe

Buck. Well, let them rest: Come hither Catesby,
Thou art sworne as deepely to effect what we intend,
As closely to conceale what we impart:
Thou know'st our reasons vrg'd vpon the way.
What think'st thou? is it not an easie matter,
To make William Lord Hastings of our minde,
For the installment of this Noble Duke
In the Seat Royall of this famous Ile?
Cates. He for his fathers sake so loues the Prince,
That he will not be wonne to ought against him

Buck. What think'st thou then of Stanley? Will
not hee?
Cates. Hee will doe all in all as Hastings doth

Buck. Well then, no more but this:
Goe gentle Catesby, and as it were farre off,
Sound thou Lord Hastings,
How he doth stand affected to our purpose,
And summon him to morrow to the Tower,
To sit about the Coronation.
If thou do'st finde him tractable to vs,
Encourage him, and tell him all our reasons:
If he be leaden, ycie, cold, vnwilling,
Be thou so too, and so breake off the talke,
And giue vs notice of his inclination:
For we to morrow hold diuided Councels,
Wherein thy selfe shalt highly be employ'd

Rich. Commend me to Lord William: tell him Catesby,
His ancient Knot of dangerous Aduersaries
To morrow are let blood at Pomfret Castle,
And bid my Lord, for ioy of this good newes,
Giue Mistresse Shore one gentle Kisse the more

Buck. Good Catesby, goe effect this businesse soundly

Cates. My good Lords both, with all the heed I can

Rich. Shall we heare from you, Catesby, ere we sleepe?
Cates. You shall, my Lord

Rich. At Crosby House, there shall you find vs both.

Exit Catesby.

Buck. Now, my Lord,
What shall wee doe, if wee perceiue
Lord Hastings will not yeeld to our Complots?
Rich. Chop off his Head:
Something wee will determine:
And looke when I am King, clayme thou of me
The Earledome of Hereford, and all the moueables
Whereof the King, my Brother, was possest

Buck. Ile clayme that promise at your Graces hand

Rich. And looke to haue it yeelded with all kindnesse.
Come, let vs suppe betimes, that afterwards
Wee may digest our complots in some forme.


Scena Secunda.

Enter a Messenger to the Doore of Hastings.

Mess. My Lord, my Lord

Hast. Who knockes?
Mess. One from the Lord Stanley

Hast. What is't a Clocke?
Mess. Vpon the stroke of foure.
Enter Lord Hastings.

Hast. Cannot my Lord Stanley sleepe these tedious
Mess. So it appeares, by that I haue to say:
First, he commends him to your Noble selfe

Hast. What then?
Mess. Then certifies your Lordship, that this Night
He dreamt, the Bore had rased off his Helme:
Besides, he sayes there are two Councels kept;
And that may be determin'd at the one,
Which may make you and him to rue at th' other.
Therefore he sends to know your Lordships pleasure,
If you will presently take Horse with him,
And with all speed post with him toward the North,
To shun the danger that his Soule diuines

Hast. Goe fellow, goe, returne vnto thy Lord,
Bid him not feare the seperated Councell:
His Honor and my selfe are at the one,
And at the other, is my good friend Catesby;
Where nothing can proceede, that toucheth vs,
Whereof I shall not haue intelligence:
Tell him his Feares are shallow, without instance.
And for his Dreames, I wonder hee's so simple,
To trust the mock'ry of vnquiet slumbers.
To flye the Bore, before the Bore pursues,
Were to incense the Bore to follow vs,
And make pursuit, where he did meane no chase.
Goe, bid thy Master rise, and come to me,
And we will both together to the Tower,
Where he shall see the Bore will vse vs kindly

Mess. Ile goe, my Lord, and tell him what you say.

Enter Catesby.

Cates. Many good morrowes to my Noble Lord

Hast. Good morrow Catesby, you are early stirring:
What newes, what newes, in this our tott'ring State?
Cates. It is a reeling World indeed, my Lord:
And I beleeue will neuer stand vpright,
Till Richard weare the Garland of the Realme

Hast. How weare the Garland?
Doest thou meane the Crowne?
Cates. I, my good Lord

Hast. Ile haue this Crown of mine cut fro[m] my shoulders,
Before Ile see the Crowne so foule mis-plac'd:
But canst thou guesse, that he doth ayme at it?
Cates. I, on my life, and hopes to find you forward,
Vpon his partie, for the gaine thereof:
And thereupon he sends you this good newes,
That this same very day your enemies,
The Kindred of the Queene, must dye at Pomfret

Hast. Indeed I am no mourner for that newes,
Because they haue beene still my aduersaries:
But, that Ile giue my voice on Richards side,
To barre my Masters Heires in true Descent,
God knowes I will not doe it, to the death

Cates. God keepe your Lordship in that gracious

Hast. But I shall laugh at this a twelue-month hence,
That they which brought me in my Masters hate,
I liue to looke vpon their Tragedie.
Well Catesby, ere a fort-night make me older,
Ile send some packing, that yet thinke not on't

Cates. 'Tis a vile thing to dye, my gracious Lord,
When men are vnprepar'd, and looke not for it

Hast. O monstrous, monstrous! and so falls it out
With Riuers, Vaughan, Grey: and so 'twill doe
With some men else, that thinke themselues as safe
As thou and I, who (as thou know'st) are deare
To Princely Richard, and to Buckingham

Cates. The Princes both make high account of you,
For they account his Head vpon the Bridge

Hast. I know they doe, and I haue well deseru'd it.
Enter Lord Stanley.

Come on, come on, where is your Bore-speare man?
Feare you the Bore, and goe so vnprouided?
Stan. My Lord good morrow, good morrow Catesby:
You may ieast on, but by the holy Rood,
I doe not like these seuerall Councels, I

Hast. My Lord, I hold my Life as deare as yours,
And neuer in my dayes, I doe protest,
Was it so precious to me, as 'tis now:
Thinke you, but that I know our state secure,
I would be so triumphant as I am?
Sta. The Lords at Pomfret, whe[n] they rode from London,
Were iocund, and suppos'd their states were sure,
And they indeed had no cause to mistrust:
But yet you see, how soone the Day o're-cast.
This sudden stab of Rancour I misdoubt:
Pray God (I say) I proue a needlesse Coward.
What, shall we toward the Tower? the day is spent

Hast. Come, come, haue with you:
Wot you what, my Lord,
To day the Lords you talke of, are beheaded

Sta. They, for their truth, might better wear their Heads,
Then some that haue accus'd them, weare their Hats.
But come, my Lord, let's away.
Enter a Pursuiuant.

Hast. Goe on before, Ile talke with this good fellow.

Exit Lord Stanley, and Catesby.

How now, Sirrha? how goes the World with thee?
Purs. The better, that your Lordship please to aske

Hast. I tell thee man, 'tis better with me now,
Then when thou met'st me last, where now we meet:
Then was I going Prisoner to the Tower,
By the suggestion of the Queenes Allyes.
But now I tell thee (keepe it to thy selfe)
This day those Enemies are put to death,
And I in better state then ere I was

Purs. God hold it, to your Honors good content

Hast. Gramercie fellow: there, drinke that for me.

Throwes him his Purse.

Purs. I thanke your Honor.

Exit Pursuiuant.

Enter a Priest.

Priest. Well met, my Lord, I am glad to see your Honor

Hast. I thanke thee, good Sir Iohn, with all my heart.
I am in your debt, for your last Exercise:
Come the next Sabboth, and I will content you

Priest. Ile wait vpon your Lordship.
Enter Buckingham.

Buc. What, talking with a Priest, Lord Chamberlaine?
Your friends at Pomfret, they doe need the Priest,
Your Honor hath no shriuing worke in hand

Hast. Good faith, and when I met this holy man,
The men you talke of, came into my minde.
What, goe you toward the Tower?
Buc. I doe, my Lord, but long I cannot stay there:
I shall returne before your Lordship, thence

Hast. Nay like enough, for I stay Dinner there

Buc. And Supper too, although thou know'st it not.
Come, will you goe?
Hast. Ile wait vpon your Lordship.


Scena Tertia.

Enter Sir Richard Ratcliffe, with Halberds, carrying the Nobles to
at Pomfret.

Riuers. Sir Richard Ratcliffe, let me tell thee this,
To day shalt thou behold a Subiect die,
For Truth, for Dutie, and for Loyaltie

Grey. God blesse the Prince from all the Pack of you,
A Knot you are, of damned Blood-suckers

Vaugh. You liue, that shall cry woe for this heereafter

Rat. Dispatch, the limit of your Liues is out

Riuers. O Pomfret, Pomfret! O thou bloody Prison!
Fatall and ominous to Noble Peeres:
Within the guiltie Closure of thy Walls,
Richard the Second here was hackt to death:
And for more slander to thy dismall Seat,
Wee giue to thee our guiltlesse blood to drinke

Grey. Now Margarets Curse is falne vpon our Heads,
When shee exclaim'd on Hastings, you, and I,
For standing by, when Richard stab'd her Sonne

Riuers. Then curs'd shee Richard,
Then curs'd shee Buckingham,
Then curs'd shee Hastings. Oh remember God,
To heare her prayer for them, as now for vs:
And for my Sister, and her Princely Sonnes,
Be satisfy'd, deare God, with our true blood,
Which, as thou know'st, vniustly must be spilt

Rat. Make haste, the houre of death is expiate

Riuers. Come Grey, come Vaughan, let vs here embrace.
Farewell, vntill we meet againe in Heauen.


Scaena Quarta.

Enter Buckingham, Darby, Hastings, Bishop of Ely, Norfolke,
Louell, with others, at a Table.

Hast. Now Noble Peeres, the cause why we are met,
Is to determine of the Coronation:
In Gods Name speake, when is the Royall day?
Buck. Is all things ready for the Royall time?
Darb. It is, and wants but nomination

Ely. To morrow then I iudge a happie day

Buck. Who knowes the Lord Protectors mind herein?
Who is most inward with the Noble Duke?
Ely. Your Grace, we thinke, should soonest know his

Buck. We know each others Faces: for our Hearts,
He knowes no more of mine, then I of yours,
Or I of his, my Lord, then you of mine:
Lord Hastings, you and he are neere in loue

Hast. I thanke his Grace, I know he loues me well:
But for his purpose in the Coronation,
I haue not sounded him, nor he deliuer'd
His gracious pleasure any way therein:
But you, my Honorable Lords, may name the time,
And in the Dukes behalfe Ile giue my Voice,
Which I presume hee'le take in gentle part.
Enter Gloucester.

Ely. In happie time, here comes the Duke himselfe

Rich. My Noble Lords, and Cousins all, good morrow:
I haue beene long a sleeper: but I trust,
My absence doth neglect no great designe,
Which by my presence might haue beene concluded

Buck. Had you not come vpon your Q my Lord,
William, Lord Hastings, had pronounc'd your part;
I meane your Voice, for Crowning of the King

Rich. Then my Lord Hastings, no man might be bolder,
His Lordship knowes me well, and loues me well.
My Lord of Ely, when I was last in Holborne,
I saw good Strawberries in your Garden there,
I doe beseech you, send for some of them

Ely. Mary and will, my Lord, with all my heart.

Exit Bishop.

Rich. Cousin of Buckingham, a word with you.
Catesby hath sounded Hastings in our businesse,
And findes the testie Gentleman so hot,
That he will lose his Head, ere giue consent
His Masters Child, as worshipfully he tearmes it,
Shall lose the Royaltie of Englands Throne

Buck. Withdraw your selfe a while, Ile goe with you.


Darb. We haue not yet set downe this day of Triumph:
To morrow, in my iudgement, is too sudden,
For I my selfe am not so well prouided,
As else I would be, were the day prolong'd.
Enter the Bishop of Ely.

Ely. Where is my Lord, the Duke of Gloster?
I haue sent for these Strawberries

Ha. His Grace looks chearfully & smooth this morning,
There's some conceit or other likes him well,
When that he bids good morrow with such spirit.
I thinke there's neuer a man in Christendome
Can lesser hide his loue, or hate, then hee,
For by his Face straight shall you know his Heart

Darb. What of his Heart perceiue you in his Face,
By any liuelyhood he shew'd to day?
Hast. Mary, that with no man here he is offended:
For were he, he had shewne it in his Lookes.
Enter Richard, and Buckingham.

Rich. I pray you all, tell me what they deserue,
That doe conspire my death with diuellish Plots
Of damned Witchcraft, and that haue preuail'd
Vpon my Body with their Hellish Charmes

Hast. The tender loue I beare your Grace, my Lord,
Makes me most forward, in this Princely presence,
To doome th' Offendors, whosoe're they be:
I say, my Lord, they haue deserued death

Rich. Then be your eyes the witnesse of their euill.
Looke how I am bewitch'd: behold, mine Arme
Is like a blasted Sapling, wither'd vp:
And this is Edwards Wife, that monstrous Witch,
Consorted with that Harlot, Strumpet Shore,
That by their Witchcraft thus haue marked me

Hast. If they haue done this deed, my Noble Lord

Rich. If? thou Protector of this damned Strumpet,
Talk'st thou to me of Ifs: thou art a Traytor,
Off with his Head; now by Saint Paul I sweare,
I will not dine, vntill I see the same.
Louell and Ratcliffe, looke that it be done:


The rest that loue me, rise, and follow me.

Manet Louell and Ratcliffe, with the Lord Hastings.

Hast. Woe, woe for England, not a whit for me,
For I, too fond, might haue preuented this:
Stanley did dreame, the Bore did rowse our Helmes,
And I did scorne it, and disdaine to flye:
Three times to day my Foot-Cloth-Horse did stumble,
And started, when he look'd vpon the Tower,
As loth to beare me to the slaughter-house.
O now I need the Priest, that spake to me:
I now repent I told the Pursuiuant,
As too triumphing, how mine Enemies
To day at Pomfret bloodily were butcher'd,
And I my selfe secure, in grace and fauour.
Oh Margaret, Margaret, now thy heauie Curse
Is lighted on poore Hastings wretched Head

Ra. Come, come, dispatch, the Duke would be at dinner:
Make a short Shrift, he longs to see your Head

Hast. O momentarie grace of mortall men,
Which we more hunt for, then the grace of God!
Who builds his hope in ayre of your good Lookes,
Liues like a drunken Sayler on a Mast,
Readie with euery Nod to tumble downe,
Into the fatall Bowels of the Deepe

Lou. Come, come, dispatch, 'tis bootlesse to exclaime

Hast. O bloody Richard: miserable England,
I prophecie the fearefull'st time to thee,
That euer wretched Age hath look'd vpon.
Come, lead me to the Block, beare him my Head,
They smile at me, who shortly shall be dead.


Enter Richard, and Buckingham, in rotten Armour, maruellous

Richard. Come Cousin,
Canst thou quake, and change thy colour,
Murther thy breath in middle of a word,
And then againe begin, and stop againe,
As if thou were distraught, and mad with terror?
Buck. Tut, I can counterfeit the deepe Tragedian,
Speake, and looke backe, and prie on euery side,
Tremble and start at wagging of a Straw:
Intending deepe suspition, gastly Lookes
Are at my seruice, like enforced Smiles;
And both are readie in their Offices,
At any time to grace my Stratagemes.
But what, is Catesby gone?
Rich. He is, and see he brings the Maior along.
Enter the Maior, and Catesby.

Buck. Lord Maior

Rich. Looke to the Draw-Bridge there

Buck. Hearke, a Drumme

Rich. Catesby, o're-looke the Walls

Buck. Lord Maior, the reason we haue sent

Rich. Looke back, defend thee, here are Enemies

Buck. God and our Innocencie defend, and guard vs.
Enter Louell and Ratcliffe, with Hastings Head.

Rich. Be patient, they are friends: Ratcliffe, and Louell

Louell. Here is the Head of that ignoble Traytor,
The dangerous and vnsuspected Hastings

Rich. So deare I lou'd the man, that I must weepe:
I tooke him for the plainest harmelesse Creature,
That breath'd vpon the Earth, a Christian.
Made him my Booke, wherein my Soule recorded
The Historie of all her secret thoughts.
So smooth he dawb'd his Vice with shew of Vertue,
That his apparant open Guilt omitted,
I meane, his Conuersation with Shores Wife,
He liu'd from all attainder of suspects

Buck. Well, well, he was the couertst sheltred Traytor
That euer liu'd.
Would you imagine, or almost beleeue,
Wert not, that by great preseruation
We liue to tell it, that the subtill Traytor
This day had plotted, in the Councell-House,
To murther me, and my good Lord of Gloster

Maior. Had he done so?
Rich. What? thinke you we are Turkes, or Infidels?
Or that we would, against the forme of Law,
Proceed thus rashly in the Villaines death,
But that the extreme perill of the case,
The Peace of England, and our Persons safetie,
Enforc'd vs to this Execution

Maior. Now faire befall you, he deseru'd his death,
And your good Graces both haue well proceeded,
To warne false Traytors from the like Attempts

Buck. I neuer look'd for better at his hands,
After he once fell in with Mistresse Shore:
Yet had we not determin'd he should dye,
Vntill your Lordship came to see his end,
Which now the louing haste of these our friends,
Something against our meanings, haue preuented;
Because, my Lord, I would haue had you heard
The Traytor speake, and timorously confesse
The manner and the purpose of his Treasons:
That you might well haue signify'd the same
Vnto the Citizens, who haply may
Misconster vs in him, and wayle his death

Ma. But, my good Lord, your Graces words shal serue,
As well as I had seene, and heard him speake:
And doe not doubt, right Noble Princes both,
But Ile acquaint our dutious Citizens
With all your iust proceedings in this case

Rich. And to that end we wish'd your Lordship here,
T' auoid the Censures of the carping World

Buck. Which since you come too late of our intent,
Yet witnesse what you heare we did intend:
And so, my good Lord Maior, we bid farwell.

Exit Maior.

Rich. Goe after, after, Cousin Buckingham.
The Maior towards Guild-Hall hyes him in all poste:
There, at your meetest vantage of the time,
Inferre the Bastardie of Edwards Children:
Tell them, how Edward put to death a Citizen,
Onely for saying, he would make his Sonne
Heire to the Crowne, meaning indeed his House,
Which, by the Signe thereof, was tearmed so.
Moreouer, vrge his hatefull Luxurie,
And beastiall appetite in change of Lust,
Which stretcht vnto their Seruants, Daughters, Wiues,
Euen where his raging eye, or sauage heart,
Without controll, lusted to make a prey.
Nay, for a need, thus farre come neere my Person:
Tell them, when that my Mother went with Child
Of that insatiate Edward; Noble Yorke,
My Princely Father, then had Warres in France,
And by true computation of the time,
Found, that the Issue was not his begot:
Which well appeared in his Lineaments,
Being nothing like the Noble Duke, my Father:
Yet touch this sparingly, as 'twere farre off,
Because, my Lord, you know my Mother liues

Buck. Doubt not, my Lord, Ile play the Orator,
As if the Golden Fee, for which I plead,
Were for my selfe: and so, my Lord, adue

Rich. If you thriue wel, bring them to Baynards Castle,
Where you shall finde me well accompanied
With reuerend Fathers, and well-learned Bishops

Buck. I goe, and towards three or foure a Clocke
Looke for the Newes that the Guild-Hall affoords.

Exit Buckingham.

Rich. Goe Louell with all speed to Doctor Shaw,
Goe thou to Fryer Penker, bid them both
Meet me within this houre at Baynards Castle.

Now will I goe to take some priuie order,
To draw the Brats of Clarence out of sight,
And to giue order, that no manner person
Haue any time recourse vnto the Princes.


Enter a Scriuener

Scr. Here is the Indictment of the good Lord Hastings,
Which in a set Hand fairely is engross'd,
That it may be to day read o're in Paules.
And marke how well the sequell hangs together:
Eleuen houres I haue spent to write it ouer,
For yester-night by Catesby was it sent me,
The Precedent was full as long a doing,
And yet within these fiue houres Hastings liu'd,
Vntainted, vnexamin'd, free, at libertie.
Here's a good World the while.
Who is so grosse, that cannot see this palpable deuice?
Yet who so bold, but sayes he sees it not?
Bad is the World, and all will come to nought,
When such ill dealing must be seene in thought.

Enter Richard and Buckingham at seuerall Doores.

Rich. How now, how now, what say the Citizens?
Buck. Now by the holy Mother of our Lord,
The Citizens are mum, say not a word

Rich. Toucht you the Bastardie of Edwards Children?
Buck. I did, with his Contract with Lady Lucy,
And his Contract by Deputie in France,
Th' vnsatiate greedinesse of his desire,
And his enforcement of the Citie Wiues,
His Tyrannie for Trifles, his owne Bastardie,
As being got, your Father then in France,
And his resemblance, being not like the Duke.
Withall, I did inferre your Lineaments,
Being the right Idea of your Father,
Both in your forme, and Noblenesse of Minde:
Layd open all your Victories in Scotland,
Your Discipline in Warre, Wisdome in Peace,
Your Bountie, Vertue, faire Humilitie:
Indeed, left nothing fitting for your purpose,
Vntoucht, or sleightly handled in discourse.
And when my Oratorie drew toward end,
I bid them that did loue their Countries good,
Cry, God saue Richard, Englands Royall King

Rich. And did they so?
Buck. No, so God helpe me, they spake not a word,
But like dumbe Statues, or breathing Stones,
Star'd each on other, and look'd deadly pale:
Which when I saw, I reprehended them,
And ask'd the Maior, what meant this wilfull silence?
His answer was, the people were not vsed
To be spoke to, but by the Recorder.
Then he was vrg'd to tell my Tale againe:
Thus sayth the Duke, thus hath the Duke inferr'd,
But nothing spoke, in warrant from himselfe.
When he had done, some followers of mine owne,
At lower end of the Hall, hurld vp their Caps,
And some tenne voyces cry'd, God saue King Richard:
And thus I tooke the vantage of those few.
Thankes gentle Citizens, and friends, quoth I,
This generall applause, and chearefull showt,
Argues your wisdome, and your loue to Richard:
And euen here brake off, and came away

Rich. What tongue-lesse Blockes were they,
Would they not speake?
Will not the Maior then, and his Brethren, come?
Buck. The Maior is here at hand: intend some feare,
Be not you spoke with, but by mightie suit:
And looke you get a Prayer-Booke in your hand,
And stand betweene two Church-men, good my Lord,
For on that ground Ile make a holy Descant:
And be not easily wonne to our requests,
Play the Maids part, still answer nay, and take it

Rich. I goe: and if you plead as well for them,
As I can say nay to thee for my selfe,
No doubt we bring it to a happie issue

Buck. Go, go vp to the Leads, the Lord Maior knocks.
Enter the Maior, and Citizens.

Welcome, my Lord, I dance attendance here,
I thinke the Duke will not be spoke withall.
Enter Catesby.

Buck. Now Catesby, what sayes your Lord to my
Catesby. He doth entreat your Grace, my Noble Lord,
To visit him to morrow, or next day:
He is within, with two right reuerend Fathers,
Diuinely bent to Meditation,
And in no Worldly suites would he be mou'd,
To draw him from his holy Exercise

Buck. Returne, good Catesby, to the gracious Duke,
Tell him, my selfe, the Maior and Aldermen,
In deepe designes, in matter of great moment,
No lesse importing then our generall good,
Are come to haue some conference with his Grace

Catesby. Ile signifie so much vnto him straight.

Buck. Ah ha, my Lord, this Prince is not an Edward,
He is not lulling on a lewd Loue-Bed,
But on his Knees, at Meditation:
Not dallying with a Brace of Curtizans,
But meditating with two deepe Diuines:
Not sleeping, to engrosse his idle Body,
But praying, to enrich his watchfull Soule.
Happie were England, would this vertuous Prince
Take on his Grace the Soueraigntie thereof.
But sure I feare we shall not winne him to it

Maior. Marry God defend his Grace should say vs

Buck. I feare he will: here Catesby comes againe.
Enter Catesby.

Now Catesby, what sayes his Grace?
Catesby. He wonders to what end you haue assembled
Such troopes of Citizens, to come to him,
His Grace not being warn'd thereof before:
He feares, my Lord, you meane no good to him

Buck. Sorry I am, my Noble Cousin should
Suspect me, that I meane no good to him:
By Heauen, we come to him in perfit loue,
And so once more returne, and tell his Grace.

When holy and deuout Religious men
Are at their Beades, 'tis much to draw them thence,
So sweet is zealous Contemplation.
Enter Richard aloft, betweene two Bishops

Maior. See where his Grace stands, tweene two Clergie

Buck. Two Props of Vertue, for a Christian Prince,
To stay him from the fall of Vanitie:
And see a Booke of Prayer in his hand,
True Ornaments to know a holy man.
Famous Plantagenet, most gracious Prince,
Lend fauourable eare to our requests,
And pardon vs the interruption
Of thy Deuotion, and right Christian Zeale

Rich. My Lord, there needes no such Apologie:
I doe beseech your Grace to pardon me,
Who earnest in the seruice of my God,
Deferr'd the visitation of my friends.
But leauing this, what is your Graces pleasure?
Buck. Euen that (I hope) which pleaseth God aboue,
And all good men, of this vngouern'd Ile

Rich. I doe suspect I haue done some offence,
That seemes disgracious in the Cities eye,
And that you come to reprehend my ignorance

Buck. You haue, my Lord:
Would it might please your Grace,
On our entreaties, to amend your fault

Rich. Else wherefore breathe I in a Christian Land

Buck. Know then, it is your fault, that you resigne
The Supreme Seat, the Throne Maiesticall,
The Sceptred Office of your Ancestors,
Your State of Fortune, and your Deaw of Birth,
The Lineall Glory of your Royall House,
To the corruption of a blemisht Stock;
Whiles in the mildnesse of your sleepie thoughts,
Which here we waken to our Countries good,
The Noble Ile doth want his proper Limmes:
His Face defac'd with skarres of Infamie,
His Royall Stock grafft with ignoble Plants,
And almost shouldred in the swallowing Gulfe
Of darke Forgetfulnesse, and deepe Obliuion.
Which to recure, we heartily solicite
Your gracious selfe to take on you the charge
And Kingly Gouernment of this your Land:
Not as Protector, Steward, Substitute,
Or lowly Factor, for anothers gaine;
But as successiuely, from Blood to Blood,
Your Right of Birth, your Empyrie, your owne.
For this, consorted with the Citizens,
Your very Worshipfull and louing friends,
And by their vehement instigation,
In this iust Cause come I to moue your Grace

Rich. I cannot tell, if to depart in silence,
Or bitterly to speake in your reproofe,
Best fitteth my Degree, or your Condition.
If not to answer, you might haply thinke,
Tongue-ty'd Ambition, not replying, yeelded
To beare the Golden Yoake of Soueraigntie,
Which fondly you would here impose on me.
If to reproue you for this suit of yours,
So season'd with your faithfull loue to me,
Then on the other side I check'd my friends.
Therefore to speake, and to auoid the first,
And then in speaking, not to incurre the last,
Definitiuely thus I answer you.
Your loue deserues my thankes, but my desert
Vnmeritable, shunnes your high request.
First, if all Obstacles were cut away,
And that my Path were euen to the Crowne,
As the ripe Reuenue, and due of Birth:
Yet so much is my pouertie of spirit,
So mightie, and so manie my defects,
That I would rather hide me from my Greatnesse,
Being a Barke to brooke no mightie Sea;
Then in my Greatnesse couet to be hid,
And in the vapour of my Glory smother'd.
But God be thank'd, there is no need of me,
And much I need to helpe you, were there need:
The Royall Tree hath left vs Royall Fruit,
Which mellow'd by the stealing howres of time,
Will well become the Seat of Maiestie,
And make (no doubt) vs happy by his Reigne.
On him I lay that, you would lay on me,
The Right and Fortune of his happie Starres,
Which God defend that I should wring from him

Buck. My Lord, this argues Conscience in your Grace,
But the respects thereof are nice, and triuiall,
All circumstances well considered.
You say, that Edward is your Brothers Sonne,
So say we too, but not by Edwards Wife:
For first was he contract to Lady Lucie,
Your Mother liues a Witnesse to his Vow;
And afterward by substitute betroth'd
To Bona, Sister to the King of France.
These both put off, a poore Petitioner,
A Care-cras'd Mother to a many Sonnes,
A Beautie-waining, and distressed Widow,
Euen in the after-noone of her best dayes,
Made prize and purchase of his wanton Eye,
Seduc'd the pitch, and height of his degree,
To base declension, and loath'd Bigamie.
By her, in his vnlawfull Bed, he got
This Edward, whom our Manners call the Prince.
More bitterly could I expostulate,
Saue that for reuerence to some aliue,
I giue a sparing limit to my Tongue.
Then good, my Lord, take to your Royall selfe
This proffer'd benefit of Dignitie:
If not to blesse vs and the Land withall,
Yet to draw forth your Noble Ancestrie
From the corruption of abusing times,
Vnto a Lineall true deriued course

Maior. Do good my Lord, your Citizens entreat you

Buck. Refuse not, mightie Lord, this proffer'd loue

Catesb. O make them ioyfull, grant their lawfull suit

Rich. Alas, why would you heape this Care on me?
I am vnfit for State, and Maiestie:
I doe beseech you take it not amisse,
I cannot, nor I will not yeeld to you

Buck. If you refuse it, as in loue and zeale,
Loth to depose the Child, your Brothers Sonne,
As well we know your tendernesse of heart,
And gentle, kinde, effeminate remorse,
Which we haue noted in you to your Kindred,
And egally indeede to all Estates:
Yet know, where you accept our suit, or no,
Your Brothers Sonne shall neuer reigne our King,
But we will plant some other in the Throne,
To the disgrace and downe-fall of your House:
And in this resolution here we leaue you.
Come Citizens, we will entreat no more.


Catesb. Call him againe, sweet Prince, accept their suit:
If you denie them, all the Land will rue it

Rich. Will you enforce me to a world of Cares.
Call them againe, I am not made of Stones,
But penetrable to your kinde entreaties,
Albeit against my Conscience and my Soule.
Enter Buckingham, and the rest.

Cousin of Buckingham, and sage graue men,
Since you will buckle fortune on my back,
To beare her burthen, where I will or no.
I must haue patience to endure the Load:
But if black Scandall, or foule-fac'd Reproach,
Attend the sequell of your Imposition,
Your meere enforcement shall acquittance me
From all the impure blots and staynes thereof;
For God doth know, and you may partly see,
How farre I am from the desire of this

Maior. God blesse your Grace, wee see it, and will
say it

Rich. In saying so, you shall but say the truth

Buck. Then I salute you with this Royall Title,
Long liue King Richard, Englands worthie King

All. Amen

Buck. To morrow may it please you to be Crown'd

Rich. Euen when you please, for you will haue it so

Buck. To morrow then we will attend your Grace,
And so most ioyfully we take our leaue

Rich. Come, let vs to our holy Worke againe.
Farewell my Cousins, farewell gentle friends.


Actus Quartus. Scena Prima.

Enter the Queene, Anne Duchesse of Gloucester, the Duchesse of
Yorke, and
Marquesse Dorset.

Duch.Yorke. Who meetes vs heere?
My Neece Plantagenet,
Led in the hand of her kind Aunt of Gloster?
Now, for my Life, shee's wandring to the Tower,
On pure hearts loue, to greet the tender Prince.
Daughter, well met

Anne. God giue your Graces both, a happie
And a ioyfull time of day

Qu. As much to you, good Sister: whither away?
Anne. No farther then the Tower, and as I guesse,
Vpon the like deuotion as your selues,
To gratulate the gentle Princes there

Qu. Kind Sister thankes, wee'le enter all together:
Enter the Lieutenant.

And in good time, here the Lieutenant comes.
Master Lieutenant, pray you, by your leaue,
How doth the Prince, and my young Sonne of Yorke?
Lieu. Right well, deare Madame: by your patience,
I may not suffer you to visit them,
The King hath strictly charg'd the contrary

Qu. The King? who's that?
Lieu. I meane, the Lord Protector

Qu. The Lord protect him from that Kingly Title.
Hath he set bounds betweene their loue, and me?
I am their Mother, who shall barre me from them?
Duch.Yorke. I am their Fathers Mother, I will see

Anne. Their Aunt I am in law, in loue their Mother:
Then bring me to their sights, Ile beare thy blame,
And take thy Office from thee, on my perill

Lieu. No, Madame, no; I may not leaue it so:
I am bound by Oath, and therefore pardon me.

Exit Lieutenant.

Enter Stanley.

Stanley. Let me but meet you Ladies one howre hence,
And Ile salute your Grace of Yorke as Mother,
And reuerend looker on of two faire Queenes.
Come Madame, you must straight to Westminster,
There to be crowned Richards Royall Queene

Qu. Ah, cut my Lace asunder,
That my pent heart may haue some scope to beat,
Or else I swoone with this dead-killing newes

Anne. Despightfull tidings, O vnpleasing newes

Dors. Be of good cheare: Mother, how fares your
Qu. O Dorset, speake not to me, get thee gone,
Death and Destruction dogges thee at thy heeles,
Thy Mothers Name is ominous to Children.
If thou wilt out-strip Death, goe crosse the Seas,
And liue with Richmond, from the reach of Hell.
Goe hye thee, hye thee from this slaughter-house,
Lest thou encrease the number of the dead,
And make me dye the thrall of Margarets Curse,
Nor Mother, Wife, nor Englands counted Queene

Stanley. Full of wise care, is this your counsaile, Madame:
Take all the swift aduantage of the howres:
You shall haue Letters from me to my Sonne,
In your behalfe, to meet you on the way:
Be not ta'ne tardie by vnwise delay

Duch.Yorke. O ill dispersing Winde of Miserie.
O my accursed Wombe, the Bed of Death:
A Cockatrice hast thou hatcht to the World,
Whose vnauoided Eye is murtherous

Stanley. Come, Madame, come, I in all haste was sent

Anne. And I with all vnwillingnesse will goe.
O would to God, that the inclusiue Verge
Of Golden Mettall, that must round my Brow,
Were red hot Steele, to seare me to the Braines,
Anoynted let me be with deadly Venome,
And dye ere men can say, God saue the Queene

Qu. Goe, goe, poore soule, I enuie not thy glory,
To feed my humor, wish thy selfe no harme

Anne. No: why? When he that is my Husband now,
Came to me, as I follow'd Henries Corse,
When scarce the blood was well washt from his hands,
Which issued from my other Angell Husband,
And that deare Saint, which then I weeping follow'd:
O, when I say I look'd on Richards Face,
This was my Wish: Be thou (quoth I) accurst,
For making me, so young, so old a Widow:
And when thou wed'st, let sorrow haunt thy Bed;
And be thy Wife, if any be so mad,
More miserable, by the Life of thee,
Then thou hast made me, by my deare Lords death.
Loe, ere I can repeat this Curse againe,
Within so small a time, my Womans heart
Grossely grew captiue to his honey words,
And prou'd the subiect of mine owne Soules Curse,
Which hitherto hath held mine eyes from rest:
For neuer yet one howre in his Bed
Did I enioy the golden deaw of sleepe,
But with his timorous Dreames was still awak'd.
Besides, he hates me for my Father Warwicke,
And will (no doubt) shortly be rid of me

Qu. Poore heart adieu, I pittie thy complaining

Anne. No more, then with my soule I mourne for

Dors. Farewell, thou wofull welcommer of glory

Anne. Adieu, poore soule, that tak'st thy leaue
of it

Du.Y. Go thou to Richmond, & good fortune guide thee,
Go thou to Richard, and good Angels tend thee,
Go thou to Sanctuarie, and good thoughts possesse thee,
I to my Graue, where peace and rest lye with mee.
Eightie odde yeeres of sorrow haue I seene,
And each howres ioy wrackt with a weeke of teene

Qu. Stay, yet looke backe with me vnto the Tower.
Pitty, you ancient Stones, those tender Babes,
Whom Enuie hath immur'd within your Walls,
Rough Cradle for such little prettie ones,
Rude ragged Nurse, old sullen Play-fellow,
For tender Princes: vse my Babies well;
So foolish Sorrowes bids your Stones farewell.


Scena Secunda.

Sound a Sennet. Enter Richard in pompe, Buckingham, Catesby,

Rich. Stand all apart. Cousin of Buckingham

Buck. My gracious Soueraigne

Rich. Giue me thy hand.


Thus high, by thy aduice, and thy assistance,
Is King Richard seated:
But shall we weare these Glories for a day?
Or shall they last, and we reioyce in them?
Buck. Still liue they, and for euer let them last

Rich. Ah Buckingham, now doe I play the Touch,
To trie if thou be currant Gold indeed:
Young Edward liues, thinke now what I would speake

Buck. Say on my louing Lord

Rich. Why Buckingham, I say I would be King

Buck. Why so you are, my thrice-renowned Lord

Rich. Ha? am I King? 'tis so: but Edward liues

Buck True, Noble Prince

Rich. O bitter consequence!
That Edward still should liue true Noble Prince.
Cousin, thou wast not wont to be so dull.
Shall I be plaine? I wish the Bastards dead,
And I would haue it suddenly perform'd.
What say'st thou now? speake suddenly, be briefe

Buck. Your Grace may doe your pleasure

Rich. Tut, tut, thou art all Ice, thy kindnesse freezes:
Say, haue I thy consent, that they shall dye?
Buc. Giue me some litle breath, some pawse, deare Lord,
Before I positiuely speake in this:
I will resolue you herein presently.

Exit Buck[ingham].

Catesby. The King is angry, see he gnawes his Lippe

Rich. I will conuerse with Iron-witted Fooles,
And vnrespectiue Boyes: none are for me,
That looke into me with considerate eyes,
High-reaching Buckingham growes circumspect.

Page. My Lord

Rich. Know'st thou not any, whom corrupting Gold
Will tempt vnto a close exploit of Death?
Page. I know a discontented Gentleman,
Whose humble meanes match not his haughtie spirit:
Gold were as good as twentie Orators,
And will (no doubt) tempt him to any thing

Rich. What is his Name?
Page. His Name, my Lord, is Tirrell

Rich. I partly know the man: goe call him hither,

The deepe reuoluing wittie Buckingham,
No more shall be the neighbor to my counsailes.
Hath he so long held out with me, vntyr'd,
And stops he now for breath? Well, be it so.
Enter Stanley.

How now, Lord Stanley, what's the newes?
Stanley. Know my louing Lord, the Marquesse Dorset
As I heare, is fled to Richmond,
In the parts where he abides

Rich. Come hither Catesby, rumor it abroad,
That Anne my Wife is very grieuous sicke,
I will take order for her keeping close.
Inquire me out some meane poore Gentleman,
Whom I will marry straight to Clarence Daughter:
The Boy is foolish, and I feare not him.
Looke how thou dream'st: I say againe, giue out,
That Anne, my Queene, is sicke, and like to dye.
About it, for it stands me much vpon
To stop all hopes, whose growth may dammage me.
I must be marryed to my Brothers Daughter,
Or else my Kingdome stands on brittle Glasse:
Murther her Brothers, and then marry her,
Vncertaine way of gaine. But I am in
So farre in blood, that sinne will pluck on sinne,
Teare-falling Pittie dwells not in this Eye.
Enter Tyrrel.

Is thy Name Tyrrel?
Tyr. Iames Tyrrel, and your most obedient subiect

Rich. Art thou indeed?
Tyr. Proue me, my gracious Lord

Rich. Dar'st thou resolue to kill a friend of mine?
Tyr. Please you:
But I had rather kill two enemies

Rich. Why then thou hast it: two deepe enemies,
Foes to my Rest, and my sweet sleepes disturbers,
Are they that I would haue thee deale vpon:
Tyrrel, I meane those Bastards in the Tower

Tyr. Let me haue open meanes to come to them,
And soone Ile rid you from the feare of them

Rich. Thou sing'st sweet Musique:
Hearke, come hither Tyrrel,
Goe by this token: rise, and lend thine Eare,


There is no more but so: say it is done,
And I will loue thee, and preferre thee for it

Tyr. I will dispatch it straight.

Enter Buckingham.

Buck. My Lord, I haue consider'd in my minde,
The late request that you did sound me in

Rich. Well, let that rest: Dorset is fled to Richmond

Buck. I heare the newes, my Lord

Rich. Stanley, hee is your Wiues Sonne: well, looke
vnto it

Buck. My Lord, I clayme the gift, my due by promise,
For which your Honor and your Faith is pawn'd,
Th' Earledome of Hertford, and the moueables,
Which you haue promised I shall possesse

Rich. Stanley looke to your Wife: if she conuey
Letters to Richmond, you shall answer it

Buck. What sayes your Highnesse to my iust request?
Rich. I doe remember me, Henry the Sixt
Did prophecie, that Richmond should be King,
When Richmond was a little peeuish Boy.
A King perhaps

Buck. May it please you to resolue me in my suit

Rich. Thou troublest me, I am not in the vaine.

Buck. And is it thus? repayes he my deepe seruice
With such contempt? made I him King for this?
O let me thinke on Hastings, and be gone
To Brecnock, while my fearefull Head is on.

Enter Tyrrel.

Tyr. The tyrannous and bloodie Act is done,
The most arch deed of pittious massacre
That euer yet this Land was guilty of:
Dighton and Forrest, who I did suborne
To do this peece of ruthfull Butchery,
Albeit they were flesht Villaines, bloody Dogges,
Melted with tendernesse, and milde compassion,
Wept like to Children, in their deaths sad Story.
O thus (quoth Dighton) lay the gentle Babes:
Thus, thus (quoth Forrest) girdling one another
Within their Alablaster innocent Armes:
Their lips were foure red Roses on a stalke,
And in their Summer Beauty kist each other.
A Booke of Prayers on their pillow lay,
Which one (quoth Forrest) almost chang'd my minde:
But oh the Diuell, there the Villaine stopt:
When Dighton thus told on, we smothered
The most replenished sweet worke of Nature,
That from the prime Creation ere she framed.
Hence both are gone with Conscience and Remorse,
They could not speake, and so I left them both,
To beare this tydings to the bloody King.
Enter Richard.

And heere he comes. All health my Soueraigne Lord

Ric. Kinde Tirrell, am I happy in thy Newes

Tir. If to haue done the thing you gaue in charge,
Beget your happinesse, be happy then,
For it is done

Rich. But did'st thou see them dead

Tir. I did my Lord

Rich. And buried gentle Tirrell

Tir. The Chaplaine of the Tower hath buried them,
But where (to say the truth) I do not know

Rich. Come to me Tirrel soone, and after Supper,
When thou shalt tell the processe of their death.
Meane time, but thinke how I may do the good,
And be inheritor of thy desire.
Farewell till then

Tir. I humbly take my leaue

Rich. The Sonne of Clarence haue I pent vp close,
His daughter meanly haue I matcht in marriage,
The Sonnes of Edward sleepe in Abrahams bosome,
And Anne my wife hath bid this world good night.
Now for I know the Britaine Richmond aymes
At yong Elizabeth my brothers daughter,
And by that knot lookes proudly on the Crowne,
To her go I, a iolly thriuing wooer.
Enter Ratcliffe.

Rat. My Lord

Rich. Good or bad newes, that thou com'st in so
Rat. Bad news my Lord, Mourton is fled to Richmond,
And Buckingham backt with the hardy Welshmen
Is in the field, and still his power encreaseth

Rich. Ely with Richmond troubles me more neere,
Then Buckingham and his rash leuied Strength.
Come, I haue learn'd, that fearfull commenting
Is leaden seruitor to dull delay.
Delay leds impotent and Snaile-pac'd Beggery:
Then fierie expedition be my wing,
Ioues Mercury, and Herald for a King:
Go muster men: My counsaile is my Sheeld,
We must be breefe, when Traitors braue the Field.


Scena Tertia.

Enter old Queene Margaret

Mar. So now prosperity begins to mellow,
And drop into the rotten mouth of death:
Heere in these Confines slily haue I lurkt,
To watch the waining of mine enemies.
A dire induction, am I witnesse to,
And will to France, hoping the consequence
Will proue as bitter, blacke, and Tragicall.
Withdraw thee wretched Margaret, who comes heere?
Enter Dutchesse and Queene.

Qu. Ah my poore Princes! ah my tender Babes:
My vnblowed Flowres, new appearing sweets:
If yet your gentle soules flye in the Ayre,
And be not fixt in doome perpetuall,
Houer about me with your ayery wings,
And heare your mothers Lamentation

Mar. Houer about her, say that right for right
Hath dim'd your Infant morne, to Aged night

Dut. So many miseries haue craz'd my voyce,
That my woe-wearied tongue is still and mute.
Edward Plantagenet, why art thou dead?
Mar. Plantagenet doth quit Plantagenet,
Edward for Edward, payes a dying debt

Qu. Wilt thou, O God, flye from such gentle Lambs,
And throw them in the intrailes of the Wolfe?
When didst thou sleepe, when such a deed was done?
Mar. When holy Harry dyed, and my sweet Sonne

Dut. Dead life, blind sight, poore mortall liuing ghost,
Woes Scene, Worlds shame, Graues due, by life vsurpt,
Breefe abstract and record of tedious dayes,
Rest thy vnrest on Englands lawfull earth,
Vnlawfully made drunke with innocent blood

Qu. Ah that thou would'st assoone affoord a Graue,
As thou canst yeeld a melancholly seate:
Then would I hide my bones, not rest them heere,
Ah who hath any cause to mourne but wee?
Mar. If ancient sorrow be most reuerent,
Giue mine the benefit of signeurie,
And let my greefes frowne on the vpper hand
If sorrow can admit Society.
I had an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him:
I had a Husband, till a Richard kill'd him:
Thou had'st an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him:
Thou had'st a Richard, till a Richard kill'd him

Dut. I had a Richard too, and thou did'st kill him;
I had a Rutland too, thou hop'st to kill him

Mar. Thou had'st a Clarence too,
And Richard kill'd him.
From forth the kennell of thy wombe hath crept
A Hell-hound that doth hunt vs all to death:
That Dogge, that had his teeth before his eyes,
To worry Lambes, and lap their gentle blood:
That foule defacer of Gods handy worke:
That reignes in gauled eyes of weeping soules:
That excellent grand Tyrant of the earth,
Thy wombe let loose to chase vs to our graues.
O vpright, iust, and true-disposing God,
How do I thanke thee, that this carnall Curre
Prayes on the issue of his Mothers body,
And makes her Pue-fellow with others mone

Dut. Oh Harries wife, triumph not in my woes:
God witnesse with me, I haue wept for thine

Mar. Beare with me: I am hungry for reuenge,
And now I cloy me with beholding it.
Thy Edward he is dead, that kill'd my Edward,
The other Edward dead, to quit my Edward:
Yong Yorke, he is but boote, because both they
Matcht not the high perfection of my losse.
Thy Clarence he is dead, that stab'd my Edward,
And the beholders of this franticke play,
Th' adulterate Hastings, Riuers, Vaughan, Gray,
Vntimely smother'd in their dusky Graues.
Richard yet liues, Hels blacke Intelligencer,
Onely reseru'd their Factor, to buy soules,
And send them thither: But at hand, at hand
Insues his pittious and vnpittied end.
Earth gapes, Hell burnes, Fiends roare, Saints pray,
To haue him sodainly conuey'd from hence:
Cancell his bond of life, deere God I pray,
That I may liue and say, The Dogge is dead

Qu. O thou did'st prophesie, the time would come,
That I should wish for thee to helpe me curse
That bottel'd Spider, that foule bunch-back'd Toad

Mar. I call'd thee then, vaine flourish of my fortune:
I call'd thee then, poore Shadow, painted Queen,
The presentation of but what I was;
The flattering Index of a direfull Pageant;
One heau'd a high, to be hurl'd downe below:
A Mother onely mockt with two faire Babes;
A dreame of what thou wast, a garish Flagge
To be the ayme of euery dangerous Shot;
A signe of Dignity, a Breath, a Bubble;
A Queene in ieast, onely to fill the Scene.
Where is thy Husband now? Where be thy Brothers?
Where be thy two Sonnes? Wherein dost thou Ioy?
Who sues, and kneeles, and sayes, God saue the Queene?
Where be the bending Peeres that flattered thee?
Where be the thronging Troopes that followed thee?
Decline all this, and see what now thou art.
For happy Wife, a most distressed Widdow:
For ioyfull Mother, one that wailes the name:
For one being sued too, one that humbly sues:
For Queene, a very Caytiffe, crown'd with care:
For she that scorn'd at me, now scorn'd of me:
For she being feared of all, now fearing one:
For she commanding all, obey'd of none.
Thus hath the course of Iustice whirl'd about,
And left thee but a very prey to time,
Hauing no more but Thought of what thou wast.
To torture thee the more, being what thou art,
Thou didst vsurpe my place, and dost thou not
Vsurpe the iust proportion of my Sorrow?
Now thy proud Necke, beares halfe my burthen'd yoke,
From which, euen heere I slip my wearied head,
And leaue the burthen of it all, on thee.
Farwell Yorkes wife, and Queene of sad mischance,
These English woes, shall make me smile in France

Qu. O thou well skill'd in Curses, stay a-while,
And teach me how to curse mine enemies

Mar. Forbeare to sleepe the night, and fast the day:
Compare dead happinesse, with liuing woe:
Thinke that thy Babes were sweeter then they were,
And he that slew them fowler then he is:
Bett'ring thy losse, makes the bad causer worse,
Reuoluing this, will teach thee how to Curse

Qu. My words are dull, O quicken them with thine

Mar. Thy woes will make them sharpe,
And pierce like mine.

Exit Margaret.

Dut. Why should calamity be full of words?
Qu. Windy Atturnies to their Clients Woes,
Ayery succeeders of intestine ioyes,
Poore breathing Orators of miseries,
Let them haue scope, though what they will impart,
Helpe nothing els, yet do they ease the hart

Dut. If so then, be not Tongue-ty'd: go with me,
And in the breath of bitter words, let's smother
My damned Son, that thy two sweet Sonnes smother'd.
The Trumpet sounds, be copious in exclaimes.
Enter King Richard, and his Traine.

Rich. Who intercepts me in my Expedition?
Dut. O she, that might haue intercepted thee
By strangling thee in her accursed wombe,
From all the slaughters (Wretch) that thou hast done

Qu. Hid'st thou that Forhead with a Golden Crowne
Where't should be branded, if that right were right?
The slaughter of the Prince that ow'd that Crowne,
And the dyre death of my poore Sonnes, and Brothers.
Tell me thou Villaine-slaue, where are my Children?
Dut. Thou Toad, thou Toade,
Where is thy Brother Clarence?
And little Ned Plantagenet his Sonne?
Qu. Where is the gentle Riuers, Vaughan, Gray?
Dut. Where is kinde Hastings?
Rich. A flourish Trumpets, strike Alarum Drummes:
Let not the Heauens heare these Tell-tale women
Raile on the Lords Annointed. Strike I say.

Flourish. Alarums.

Either be patient, and intreat me fayre,
Or with the clamorous report of Warre,
Thus will I drowne your exclamations

Dut. Art thou my Sonne?
Rich. I, I thanke God, my Father, and your selfe

Dut. Then patiently heare my impatience

Rich. Madam, I haue a touch of your condition,
That cannot brooke the accent of reproofe

Dut. O let me speake

Rich. Do then, but Ile not heare

Dut. I will be milde, and gentle in my words

Rich. And breefe (good Mother) for I am in hast

Dut. Art thou so hasty? I haue staid for thee
(God knowes) in torment and in agony

Rich. And came I not at last to comfort you?
Dut. No by the holy Rood, thou know'st it well,
Thou cam'st on earth, to make the earth my Hell.
A greeuous burthen was thy Birth to me,
Tetchy and wayward was thy Infancie.
Thy School-daies frightfull, desp'rate, wilde, and furious,
Thy prime of Manhood, daring, bold, and venturous:
Thy Age confirm'd, proud, subtle, slye, and bloody,
More milde, but yet more harmfull; Kinde in hatred:
What comfortable houre canst thou name,
That euer grac'd me with thy company?
Rich. Faith none, but Humfrey Hower,
That call'd your Grace
To Breakefast once, forth of my company.
If I be so disgracious in your eye,
Let me march on, and not offend you Madam.
Strike vp the Drumme

Dut. I prythee heare me speake

Rich. You speake too bitterly

Dut. Heare me a word:
For I shall neuer speake to thee againe

Rich. So

Dut. Either thou wilt dye, by Gods iust ordinance
Ere from this warre thou turne a Conqueror:
Or I with greefe and extreame Age shall perish,
And neuer more behold thy face againe.
Therefore take with thee my most greeuous Curse,
Which in the day of Battell tyre thee more
Then all the compleat Armour that thou wear'st.
My Prayers on the aduerse party fight,
And there the little soules of Edwards Children,
Whisper the Spirits of thine Enemies,
And promise them Successe and Victory:
Bloody thou art, bloody will be thy end:
Shame serues thy life, and doth thy death attend.

Qu. Though far more cause, yet much lesse spirit to curse
Abides in me, I say Amen to her

Rich. Stay Madam, I must talke a word with you

Qu. I haue no more sonnes of the Royall Blood
For thee to slaughter. For my Daughters (Richard)
They shall be praying Nunnes, not weeping Queenes:
And therefore leuell not to hit their liues

Rich. You haue a daughter call'd Elizabeth,
Vertuous and Faire, Royall and Gracious?
Qu. And must she dye for this? O let her liue,
And Ile corrupt her Manners, staine her Beauty,
Slander my Selfe, as false to Edwards bed:
Throw ouer her the vaile of Infamy,
So she may liue vnscarr'd of bleeding slaughter,
I will confesse she was not Edwards daughter

Rich. Wrong not her Byrth, she is a Royall Princesse

Qu. To saue her life, Ile say she is not so

Rich. Her life is safest onely in her byrth

Qu. And onely in that safety, dyed her Brothers

Rich. Loe at their Birth, good starres were opposite

Qu. No, to their liues, ill friends were contrary

Rich. All vnauoyded is the doome of Destiny

Qu. True: when auoyded grace makes Destiny.
My Babes were destin'd to a fairer death,
If grace had blest thee with a fairer life

Rich. You speake as if that I had slaine my Cosins?
Qu. Cosins indeed, and by their Vnckle couzend,
Of Comfort, Kingdome, Kindred, Freedome, Life,
Whose hand soeuer lanch'd their tender hearts,
Thy head (all indirectly) gaue direction.
No doubt the murd'rous Knife was dull and blunt,
Till it was whetted on thy stone-hard heart,
To reuell in the Intrailes of my Lambes.
But that still vse of greefe, makes wilde greefe tame,
My tongue should to thy eares not name my Boyes,
Till that my Nayles were anchor'd in thine eyes:
And I in such a desp'rate Bay of death,
Like a poore Barke, of sailes and tackling reft,
Rush all to peeces on thy Rocky bosome

Rich. Madam, so thriue I in my enterprize
And dangerous successe of bloody warres,
As I intend more good to you and yours,
Then euer you and yours by me were harm'd

Qu. What good is couer'd with the face of heauen,
To be discouered, that can do me good

Rich. Th' aduancement of your children, gentle Lady
Qu. Vp to some Scaffold, there to lose their heads

Rich. Vnto the dignity and height of Fortune,
The high Imperiall Type of this earths glory

Qu. Flatter my sorrow with report of it:
Tell me, what State, what Dignity, what Honor,
Canst thou demise to any childe of mine

Rich. Euen all I haue; I, and my selfe and all,
Will I withall indow a childe of thine:
So in the Lethe of thy angry soule,
Thou drowne the sad remembrance of those wrongs,
Which thou supposest I haue done to thee

Qu. Be breefe, least that the processe of thy kindnesse
Last longer telling then thy kindnesse date

Rich. Then know,
That from my Soule, I loue thy Daughter

Qu. My daughters Mother thinkes it with her soule

Rich. What do you thinke?
Qu. That thou dost loue my daughter from thy soule
So from thy Soules loue didst thou loue her Brothers,
And from my hearts loue, I do thanke thee for it

Rich. Be not so hasty to confound my meaning:
I meane that with my Soule I loue thy daughter,
And do intend to make her Queene of England

Qu. Well then, who dost y meane shallbe her King

Rich. Euen he that makes her Queene:
Who else should bee?
Qu. What, thou?
Rich. Euen so: How thinke you of it?
Qu. How canst thou woo her?
Rich. That I would learne of you,
As one being best acquainted with her humour

Qu. And wilt thou learne of me?
Rich. Madam, with all my heart

Qu. Send to her by the man that slew her Brothers.
A paire of bleeding hearts: thereon ingraue
Edward and Yorke, then haply will she weepe:
Therefore present to her, as sometime Margaret
Did to thy Father, steept in Rutlands blood,
A hand-kercheefe, which say to her did dreyne
The purple sappe from her sweet Brothers body,
And bid her wipe her weeping eyes withall.
If this inducement moue her not to loue,
Send her a Letter of thy Noble deeds:
Tell her, thou mad'st away her Vnckle Clarence,
Her Vnckle Riuers, I (and for her sake)
Mad'st quicke conueyance with her good Aunt Anne

Rich. You mocke me Madam, this not the way
To win your daughter

Qu. There is no other way,
Vnlesse thou could'st put on some other shape,

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