Imagini ale paginilor

SCENE I. A Gallery in the Palace.

Enter GARDINER, Bishop of Winchester; a Page with
a Torch before him, met by SIR THOMAS LOVELL.
Gar. It's one o'clock, boy, is't not?
It hath struck.
Gur. These should be hours for necessities,
Not for delights; times to repair our nature
With comforting repose, and not for us

To waste these times.-Good hour of night, sir Thomas;
Whither so late?


Came you from the king, my lord? Gar. I did, sir Thomas; and left him at primero With the duke of Suffolk.

I must to him, too,
Before he go to bed. I'll take my leave.

Gar. Not yet, sir Thomas Lovell. What's the matter? It seems, you are in haste: an if there be

great offence belongs to't, give your friend

Some touch of your late business: Affairs, that walk (As, they say, spirits do), at midnight, have

In them a wilder nature, than the business
That seeks despatch by day.


And durst commend a secret to
Much weightier than this work.
They say, in great extremity;
She'll with the labour end.

My lord, I love you; your ear

The queen's in labour, and fear'd,

The fruit, she goes with,

I pray for heartily; that it may find

Good time, and live: but for the stock, sir Thomas, I wish it grubb'd up now.


Methinks, I could
Cry the amen; and yet my conscience says,
She's a good creature, and, sweet lady, does
Deserve our better wishes.

But, sir, sir,-
Hear me, sir Thomas: You are a gentleman
Of mine own way; I know you wise, religious;
And, let me tell you, it will ne'er be well,-
"Twill not, sir Thomas Lovell, take't of me,-
Till Cranmer, Cromwell, her two hands, and she,
Sleep in their graves.

Now, sir, you speak of two
The most remark'd i'the kingdom. As for Cromwell,—'
Beside that of the jewel-house, he's made master
O'the rolls, and the king's secretary: further, sir,
Stands in the gap and trade of more preferments,
With which the time will load him: The archbishop
Is the king's hand, and tongue; And who dare speak
One syllable against him?

Yes, yes, sir Thomas,
There are that dare; and I myself have ventur'd
To speak my mind of him: and, indeed, this day,
Sir (I may tell it you), I think, I have
Incens'd the lords o'the council, that he is
(For so I know he is, they know he is),
À most arch heretic, a pestilence

That does infect the land: with which they moved,

Have broken with the king; who hath so far
Given ear to our complaint (of his great grace
And princely care; foreseeing those fell mischiefs
Our reasons laid before him), he hath commanded,
To-morrow morning to the council-board

He be convented. He's a rank weed, sir Thomas,
And we must root him out. From your affairs
I hinder you too long: good night, sir Thomas.
Lov. Many good nights, my lord; I rest your ser-
[Exeunt Gardiner and Page.


As LOVELL is going out, enter the KING and the

K. Hen. Charles, I will play no more to-night;
My mind's not on't, you are too hard for me.
Suf. Sir, I did never win of you before.
K. Hen. But little, Charles;

Nor shall not, when my fancy's on my play.—
Now, Lovell, from the queen what is the news?
Lov. I could not personally deliver to her
What you commanded me, but by her woman,
I sent your message; who return'd her thanks
In the greatest humbleness, and desir'd your highness
Most heartily to pray for her.

K. Hen.

What say'st thou? ha? To pray for her? what, is she crying out?

Lov. So said her woman; aud that her sufferance made Almost each pang a death.

K. Hen.

Alas, good lady!

Suf. God safely quit her of her burden, and

With gentle travail, to the gladding of

Your highness with an heir!

K. Hen.

Pr'ythee, to bed; and in thy prayers remember
The estate of my poor queen.

"Tis midnight, Charles,

Leave me alone;

I wish your highness

For I must think of that, which company
Will not be friendly to.

A quiet night, and my good mistress will
Remember in my prayers.

K. Hen.

Charles, good night.
[Exit Suffolk.


Well, sir, what follows?

Den. Sir, I have brought my lord the archbishop,

As you commanded me.

K. Hen.

Den. Ay, my good lord.

K, Hen.

Ha! Canterbury?

"Tis true: Where is he, Denny?

Den. He attends your highness' pleasure.

K. Hen.

Lov. This is about that which the bishop spake;

I am happily come hither

K. Hen.

Bring him to us. [Exit Denny.


[blocks in formation]

Re-enter DENNY, with CRANMER.

Ha! I have said.-Be gone.


[Exeunt Lovell and Denny.

Cran. I am fearful:-Wherefore frowns he thus? "Tis his aspéct of terror. All's not well.

K. Hen. How now, my lord? You do desire to know Wherefore I sent for you.


It is my duty, To attend your highness' pleasure.

K. Hen.

'Pray you, arise,

My good and gracious lord of Canterbury.
Come, you and I must walk a turn together;

I have news to tell you: Come, come, give me your hand.
Ah, my good lord, I grieve at what I speak,
And am right sorry to repeat what follows:
I have, and most unwillingly, of late
Heard many grievous, I do say, my lord,

Grievous complaints of you; which, being consider'd,
Have mov'd us and our council, that you shall
This morning come before us; where, I know,
You cannot with such freedom purge yourself,
But that, till further trial, in those charges


Which will require your answer, you must take
Your patience to you, and be well contented

To make your house our Tower: You a brother of us,
It fits we thus proceed, or else no witness

Would come against you.

Cran. I humbly thank your highness; And am right glad to catch this good occasion Most throughly to be winnow'd, where my chaff And corn shall fly asunder: for, I know,

There's none stands under more calumnious tongues, Than I myself, poor man.

K. Hen.
Stand up, good Canterbury;
Thy truth, and thy integrity, is rooted

In us, thy friend: Give me thy hand, stand up;
Pr'ythee, let's walk. Now, by my holy-dame,
What manner of man are you? My lord, I look'd
You would have given me your petition, that
I should have ta'en some pains to bring together
Yourself and your accusers; and to have heard you
Without indurance, further.


Most dread liege,
The good I stand on is my truth, and honesty;
If they shall fail, I, with mine enemies,

Will triumph o'er my person; which I weigh not,
Being of those virtues vacant. I fear nothing

What can be said against me.

K. Hen.

Know you not how

Your state stands i'the world, with the whole world? Your enemies

Are many, and not small; their practices

Must bear the same proportion: and not ever
The justice and the truth o'the question carries
The due o'the verdict with it: At what ease
Might corrupt minds procure knaves as corrupt
To swear against you? such things have been done.
You are potently oppos'd; and with a malice
Of as great size. Ween you of better luck,
I mean, in perjur'd witness, than your master,
Whose minister you are, whiles here he liv'd'
Upon this naughty earth? Go to, go to;

« ÎnapoiContinuă »