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It is war's prize to take all vantages ;
Thy father bears the type of king of Naples,
Of both the Sicils, and Jerusalem;
(York is taken prisoner. | Unless the adage must be verified,
'Tis beauty that doth oft make women proud; So true men yield, with robbers so o'er-match'd. But God, he knows, thy share thereof is small : North. What would your grace have done unto
'Tis virtue that doth make them most admir'd; him now?
The contrary doth make thee wonder'd at :
The want thereof makes thee abominable :
Or as the south to the septentrion.
How could'st thou drain the life-blood of the child,
Would'st have me weep? why, now thou hast thy Or, with the rest, where is your darling Rutland ?
These tears are my sweet Rutland's obsequies ;
And every drop cries vengeance for his death, I give thee this to dry thy cheeks withal.
'Gainst thee, fell Clifford, — and thee, false FrenchAlas, poor York! but that I hate thee deadly, I should lament thy miserable state.
North. Beshrew me, but his passions move me so, I pr’ythee, grieve, to make me merry, York ; That hardly can I check my eyes from tears. Stamp, rave, and fret, that I may ng and dance. York. That face of his the hungry cannibals What, hath thy fiery heart so parch'd thine entrails, Would not have touch'd, would not have stain'd with That not a tear can fall for Rutland's death ?
blood : Why art thou patient, man ? thou should'st be mad; But you are more inhuman, more inexorable, And I, to make thee mad, do mock thee thus, 0, ten times more, — than tigers of Hyrcania. Thou would'st be fee'd, I see, to make me sport ; See, ruthless queen, a hapless father's tears : York cannot speak, unless he wear a crown. This cloth thou dipp’dst in blood of my sweet boy, A crown for York ;— and, lords, bow low to him. - And I with tears do wash the blood away. Hold you his hands, whilst I do set it on. — Keep thou the napkin, and go boast of this : (Pulting a paper crown on his head.
[He gives back the handkerchief. Ay, marry, sir, now looks he like a king !
And, if thou tell’st the heavy story right, Ay, this is he that took king Henry's chair ; Upon my soul, the hearers will shed tears ; And this is he was bis adopted heir.
Yea, even my foes will shed fast-falling tears, But how is it, that great Plantagenet
Alas, it was a piteous deed !
Hard-hearted Clifford, take me from the world ;
My soul to heaven, my blood upon your heads ! (), 'tis a fault too, too unpardonable !
North. Had he been slaughter-man to all my kin, ON with the crown; and, with the crown, his head; I should not for my life but weep with him, And, whilst we brea:he, take time to do him dead. To see how inly sorrow gripes his soul.
Clif. That is my office, for my father's sake. Q. Mar. What, weeping-ripe, my lord NorthR. Mar. Nay, stay ; let's hear the orisons he makes.
umberland ? Pork. She-wolf of France, but worse than wolves Think but upon the wrong he did us all, of France,
And that will quickly dry thy melting tears. Whose tongue more poisons than the adder's tooth ! Clif. Here's for my oath, here's for my father's How ill-beseeming is it in thy sex,
(Stabbing him. To triumph like an Amazonian trull,
Q. Mar. And here's to right our gentle-hearted Upon their woes, whom fortune captivates ?
(Stabbing him. But that thy face is, visor-like, unchanging,
York. Open thy gate of mercy, gracious God ! Made impudent with use of evil deeds,
My soul flies through these wounds to seek out thee. ! Kould assay, proud queen, to make thee blush :
[Dies. To tell thee whence thou camist, of whom deriv'd, Q. Mar. Off with his head, and set it on York Were shame enough to shame thee, wert thou not
gates ; shameless.
So York may overlook the town of York. (Ereunt.
SCENE I. - A Plain near Mortimer's Cross in | By many hands your father was subdu'd ;
But only slaughter'd by the ireful arm
Of unrelerting Clifford, and the queen : Drums. Enter Edward, and RICHARD, with their
Who crown'd the gracious duke, in high despite ; Forces, marching.
Laugh'd in his face; and, when with grief he wept, Edw. I wonder, how our princely father 'scap'd; | The ruthless queen gave him, to dry bis cheeks, Or whether he be 'scap'd away, or no,
A napkin steeped in the harmless blood From Clifford's and Northumberland's pursuit ; Of sweet young Rutland, by rough Clifford slain : Had he been ta'en, we should have heard the news; And, after many scorns, many foul taunts, Had he been slain, we should have heard the news; They took his head, and on the gates of York Or, had he 'scap'd, methinks, we should have heard They set the same ; and there it doth remain, The happy tidings of his good escape.
The saddest spectacle that e'er I view'd. How fares my brother? why is he so sad ?
Edw. Sweet duke of York, our prop to lean upon; Rich. I cannot joy, until I be resolv'd
Now thou art gone, we have no stafl, no stay! Where our right valiant father is become.
O Clifford, boist'rous Clifford, thou hast slain I saw him in the battle range about ;
The flower of Europe for his chivalry; And watch'd him, how he singled Clifford forth. And treacherously hast thou vanquish'd him, Methought, he bore him in the thickest troop, For, hand to hand, he would have vanquish'd thee:As doth a lion in a herd of neat:
Now my soul's palace is become a priso.1 : Or as a bear, encompass'd round with dogs ; Ah, would she break from hence that this my body Who having pinch'd a few, and made them cry, Might in the ground be closed up in rest : The rest stand all aloof, and bark at him.
For never henceforth shall I joy again, So far'd our father with his enemies ;
Never, O never, shall I see more joy. So fled his enemies my warlike father ;
Rich. I cannot weep; for all my body's moisture Methinks, 'tis prize enough to be his son.
Scarce serves to quench my furnace-burning heart : See how the morning opes her golden gates, Nor can my tongue unload my heart's great burden; And takes her farewell of the glorious sun!
For self-same wind, that I should speak withal, How well resembles it the prime of youth,
Is kindling coals, that fire all my breast, Trimm'd like a younker, prancing to his love! And burn me up with flames, that tears would quench.
E tw. Dazzle mine eyes, or do I see three suns ? To weep, is to inake less the depth of grief:
Rich. Three glorious suns, each one a perfect sun; Tears, then, for babes; blows, and revenge for me! Not separated with the racking clouds,
Richard, I bear thy name, I'll venge thy death, But sever'd in a pale clear-shining sky.
Or die renowned by attempting it. See, see! they join, embrace, and seem to kiss, Edw. His name that valiapi duke hath leit with As if they "ow'd some league inviolable : Now are they but one lamp, one light, one sun. His dukedom and his chair with me is left. In this the heaven figures some event.
Rich. Nay, if thou be that princely eaglc's bird Edw. 'Tis wondrous strange, the like yet never Show thy descent by gazing 'gainst the sun : heard of.
For chair and dukedom, throne and kingdom say; I think, it cites us, brother, to the field;
Either that is thine, or else thou wert not his, That we, the sons of brave Plantagenet,
March. Enter WARWICK and Montague, win Each one already blazing by our meeds,
War. How now, fair lords? What fare? whaz Whate'er it bodes, henceforward will I bear
news abroad? Upon my target three fair shining suns.
Rich. Great lord of Warwick, if we should recount Rich. Nay, bear three daughters ; - by your Our baleful news, and, at each word's deliverance, leave I speak it,
Stab poniards in our fiesh, till ail were told, You love the breeder better than the male.
The words would add more anguish than the wounds
O valiant lord, the duke of York is slain.
Edw. O Warwick! Warwick! that Plantagenet
War. Ten days ago I drown'd these news in tears: When as the noble duke of York was slain,
And now, to add more measure to your woes, Your princely father, and my loving lord.
I come to tell you things since then befall’n. Edw. O, speak no more! for I have heard too After the bloody fray at Wakefield fought, much.
Where your brave father breath'd his latest gasp: Rich. Say low he died, for I will hear it all. Tidings, as swiftly as the posts could run,
Mess. Environed he was with many foes; Were brought me of your loss, and his depart. And stood against them, as the hope of Troy I then in London, keeper of the king, Against the Greeks, that would have enter'd Troy. Muster'd my soldiers, gather'd flocks of friends, But Hercules himself must yield to odds ;
And very well appointed, as I thought, And many strokes, though with a little axe, March'd towards Saint Alban's to interct.pt the Hew down and fell the hardest-timber'd oak.
Bearing the king in my behalf along :
With all the friends that thou, brave carl of March, For by my scouts I was advertised,
Ainongst the loving Welchman canst procure, That she was coming with a full intent
Will but amount to five and twenty thousand, To dash our late decree in parliament,
Why, Via' to London will we march amain; Touching king Henry's oath, and your succession. And once again bestride our foaming steeds, Short tale to make, - we at Saint Alban's met, And once again cry Charge upon our foes ! Our battles join'd, and both sides fiercely fought : But never once again turn back, and Hy. But, whether 'twas the coldness of the king,
Rich. Ay, now, methinks, I hear great Warwick Who look'd full gently on his warlike queen ;
speak : That robb'd my soldiers of their hated spleen ; Ne'er may he live to see a sunshine day, Or whether 'twas report of her success ;
That cries — Retire, if Warwick bid liim stay. Or more than common fear of Clifford's rigour, Edw. Lord Warwick, on thy shoulder will I lean; Who thunders to his captives — blood and death, And when thou fall'st (as God forbid the hour !) I cannot judge: but, to conclude with truth, Must Edward fall, which peril heaven forefend ! Their weapons like to lightning came and went ; War. No longer earl of March, but duke of York; Our soldiers --- like the night-owl's lazy flight, The next degree is, England's royal throne: Or like a lazy thrasher with a flail,
For king of England shalt thou be proclaiin'd Fell gently down, as if they struck their friends. In every borough as we pass along; I cheer'd them up with justice of our cause,
And he that throws not up his cap for joy, With promise of high pay, and great rewards : Shall for the fault make forfeit of his head. But all in vain ; they had no heart to fight,
King Edward, - valiant Richard, Montague, And we, in them, no hope to win the day,
Stay we no longer dreaming of renown, So that we fled: the king, unto the queen ;
But sound the trumpets, and about our task. Lord George your brother, Norfolk, and myself, Rich. Then, Clifford, were thy heart as hard as In haste, post-haste, are come to join with you ;
steel, For in the marches here, we heard, you were, (As thou hast shown it finty by thy deeds,) Making another head to fight again.
I come to pierce it, - or to give thee mine. Edw. Where is the duke of Norfolk, gentle Edw. Then strike
- God, and Saint Warwick ?
George, for us! And when came George from Burgundy to England ?
Enter a Messenger. War. Some six miles off the duke is with the soldiers :
War. How now? what news? And for your brother, he was lately sent
Mess. The duke of Norfolk sends you word by me, From your kind aunt, duchess of Burgundy, The queen is coming with a puissant host ; With aid of soldiers to this needful war.
And craves yo
company for speedy counsel. Rich. 'Twas odds, belike, when valiant Warwick War. Why, then it sorts, brave warriors : Let's Hled :
(Ereun. Oft have I heard his praises in pursuit, But ne'er, till now, his scandal f retire.
Before York. War. Nor now my scandal, Richard, dost thou
Enter King HENRY, QUEEN MARGARET, the PRINCE hear;
OF WALES, CLIFFORD, and NORTHUMBERLAND, For thou shalt know, this strong right hand of mine
with Forces. Can pluck the diadem from faint Henry's head, And wring the awful scepter from his fist;
Q. Mar. Welcome, my lord, to this brave town Were he as famous and as bold in war,
of York. As he is fam'd for mildness, peace, and prayer.
Yonder's the head of that arch-enemy, Rich. I know it well, lord Warwick : blame me That sought to be encompass'd with your crownı:
Doth not the object cheer your heart, my lord ? 'Tis love, I bear thy glories, makes me speak.
K. Hen. Ay, as the rocks cheer them that fear But, in this troublous time, what's to be done?
their wreck; Shall we go throw away our coats of steel,
To see this sight, it irks my very soul. And wrap our bodies in black mourning gowns,
Withhold revenge, dear God ! 'tis not my fault, Numbering our Ave-Maries with our beads ? Not wittingly have I infring'd my vow. Or shall we oi! Se helmets of our foes
Clif. My gracious liege, this too much lenity Tell our devotion with revengeful arms ?
And harmful pity must be laid aside. If for the last, say, — Ay, and to it, lords.
To whom do lions cast their gentle looks? War. Why, therefore Warwick came to seek you Not to the beast that would usurp their den. out;
Whose hand is that, the forest bear doth lick ? And therefore comes my brother Montagne. Not his, that spoils her young before her face. Attend me, lords. The proud insulting queen, Who 'scapes the lurking serpent's mortal sting ? With Clifford, and the haught Northumberland, Not he that sets his foot upon her back. And of their feather, many more proud birds, The smallest worm will turn, being trodden on; Have wrought the easy melting king like wax. And doves will peck, in safeguard of their brood. He swore consent to your succession,
Ambitious York did level at thy crown, His oath enrolled in the parliament;
Thou smiling, while he knit his angry brows : And now to London all the crew are gone,
He, but a duke, would have his son a king, To frustrate both his oath, and what beside
And raise his issue, like a loving sire ;
Thou, being a king, bless'd with a goodly son,
Which argued thee a most unloving father.
Unreasonable creatures feed their young :
Becomes it thee to be thus bold in terms, sind though man's face be fearful to their eyes, Before thy sovereign, and thy lawful king? Yit, in protection of their tender ones,
Edw. I am his king, and he should bow lus knee; Who hath not seen them (even with those wings I was adopted heir by his consent : Which sometime they have used with fearful flight,) Since when, his oath is broke; for, as I hear, Make war with him that climb'd unto their nest, You — that are king, though he do wear the Offering their own lives in their youngs' defence ?
crown, For shame, my liege, make them your precedent ! Have caus’d him, by new act of parliament, Were it not pity, that this goodly boy
To blot out me, and put his own son in. Should lose his birthright by his father's fault; Clif. And reason too; sui long hereafter say unto his child,
Who should succeed the father but the son ? Il hat my great-grandfather and grandsire got,
Rich. Are you there, butcher ? — O, I cannot My careless father fondly gave away?
speak! Ah, what a shame were this! Look on the boy ; Clif. Ay, crook-back; here I stand, to answer And let his manly face, which promiseth
thee, Successful fortune, steel thy melting heart,
Or any he the proudest of thy sort. To hold thine own, and leave thine own with him. Rich. 'Twas you that kill'd young Rutland, was X. Hen. Full well hath Clifford play'd the orator,
it not? Inferring arguments of mighty force.
Clif. Ay, and old York, and yet not satisfy'd. But, Clifford, tell me, didst thou never hear,
Rich. For God's sake, lords, give signal to the That things ill got had ever bad success?
fight. And happy always was it for that son,
War. What say'st thou, Henry, wilt thou yield Whose father for his hoarding went to hell ?
the crown ? I'll leave my son my virtuous deeds behind ;
Q. Mar. Why, how now, long-tongu'd WarAnd 'would, my father had left me no more!
wick ? dare you speak ? For all the rest is held at such a rate,
When you and I met at Saint Alban's last, As brings a thousand-fold more care to keep, Your legs did better service than your hands. Than in possession any jot of pleasure.
War. Then 'twas my turn to fly, and now 'tis Ah, cousin York! 'would thy best friends did know,
thine. How it doth grieve me that thy head is here ! Clif. You said so much before, and yet you fled. Q. Mar. My lord, cheer up your spirits ; our War. 'Twas not your valour, Clifford, drove me foes are nigh,
thence. And this soft courage makes your followers faint. North. No, nor your manhood, that durst make You promis'd knighthood to our forward son ;
you stay. Unsheath your sword, and dub him presently. Rich. Northumberland, I hold thee reverently; Edward, kneel down.
Break off the parle ; for scarce I can refrain
Prince. My gracious father, by your kingly leave, Clif. I slew thy father : Call'st thou him a child ? I'll draw it as apparent to the crown,
Rich. Ay, like a dastard, and a treacherous And in that quarrel use it to the death.
coward, Clif. Why, that is spoken like a toward prince. As thou didst kill our tender brother Rutland;
But, ere sun-set, I'll make thee curse the deed. Enter a Messenger.
K. Hen. Have done with words, my lords, and Mess. Royal commanders, be in readiness :
hear me speak. For, with a band of thirty thousand men,
Q. Mar. Defy them then, or else hold close thy Comes Warwick, backing of the duke of York ;
lips. And, in the towns, as they do march along,
K. Hen. I pr’ythee, give no limits to my tongue ; Proclaims him king, and many fly to him :
I am a king, and privileg'd to speak. Darraign you battle, for they are at hand.
Cif. My liege, the wound, that bred this meeting Clif. I would, your highness would depart the
Cannot be cur'd by words; therefore be still. The queen hath best success when you are absent. Rich. Then, executioner, unsheath thy sword : Q. Mar. Ay, good my lord, and leave us to our By him that made us all, I am resolvid, fortune.
That Clifford's manhood lies upon his tongue. K. Hen. Why, that's my fortune too; therefore Edw. Say, Henry, shall I have my right or no ?
A thousand men have broke their fasts to-day, Vorth. Be it with resolution then to fight
That ne'er shall dine, unless thou yield the crown. Prince. My royal father, cheer these noble lords, War. If thou deny, their blood upon thy head; And hearten those that fight in your defence : For York in justice puts his armour on. Unsheath your sword, good father; cry, Saint George! Prince. If that be right, which Warwick says is
right, March. Enter EdwARD, GEORGE, RICHARD, WAR
There is no wrong, but every thing is right. WICK, Norfolk, Montague, and Soldiers.
Rich. Whoever got thee, there thy mother stands; Edw. Now, perjur’d Henry! wilt thou kneel For, well I wot, thou hast thy mother's tongue.
Q. Mar. But thou art neither like thy sire, nor And set thy diadem upon my head; Or bide the mortal fortune of the field ?
But like a foul misshapen stigmatick, Q. Mar. Go, rate thy minions, proud insulting Mark'd by the destinies to be avoided, boy!
As venom toads, or lizards' dreadful stings.
Rich. Iron of Naples, hid with English gilt, Whose father bears the title of a king,
Enter RICHARD. (As if a channel should be call'd the sea,)
Rich. Ah, Warwick, why hast thou withdrawn Sham'st thou not, knowing whence thou art ex
Thy brother's blood the thirsty carth hath drunk, To let thy tongue detect thy base-born heart? Broach'd with the steely point of Clifford's lance: Edw. A wisp of straw were worth a thousand And, in the very pangs of death, he cry'd, crowns,
Like to a dismal clangour heard from far, To make this shameless callet know herself.
Warwick, revenge ! brother, revenge my death ! Helen of Greece was fairer far than thou,
So underneath the belly of their steeds, Although thy husband may be Menelaus;
That stain’d their fetlocks in his smoking blood, And ne'er was Agamemnon's brother wrong'd
The noble gentleman gave up the ghost. By that false woman, as this king by thee.
War. Then let the earth be drunken with our His father revell’d in the heart of France,
blood : And tam'd the king, and made the Dauphin stoop;
I'll kill my horse, because I will not fly. And had he match'd according to his state,
Why stand we like soft-hearted women here, He might have kept that glory to this day :
Wailing our losses, whiles the foe doth rage; But when he took a beggar to his bed,
And look upon, as if the tragedy
Till either death hath clos'd these eyes of mine,
thine; Had slipp'd our claim until another age.
And, in this vow, do chain my soul to thine. Geo. But, when we saw our sunshine made thy And, ere my knee rise from the earth's cold face, spring,
I throw my hands, mine eyes, my heart to thee, And that thy summer bred us no increase,
Thou setter up and plucker down of kings !
Beseeching thee, - if with thy will it stands
Where-e'er it be, in heaven, or on earth.
Rich. Brother, give me thy hand; — and, gentle Since thou deny'st the gentle king to speak.
I, that did never weep, now melt with woe,
That winter should cut off our spring-time so. Edw. No, wrangling woman; we'll no longer War. Away, away! Once more, sweet lord stay;
farewell. These words will cost ten thousand lives to-day. Geo. Let us all together to our troops,
[Exeunt. And give them leave to fly that will not stay ;
And call them pillars, that will stand to us; SCENE III. - A Field of Battle between Towton And, if we thrive, promise them such rewards and Saxton in Yorkshire.
As victors wear at the Olympian games :
This may plant courage in their quailing breasts ; Alarums : Excursions. Enter WARWICK.
For yet is hope of life, and victory. War. Forspent with toil, as runners with a race,
Fore-slow no longer, make we hence amain. I lay me down a little while to breathe :
[Exeunt. For strokes receiv’d, and many blows repaid, I lave robb’d my strong-knit sinews of their
SCENE IV. - The same. Another Part of the Field. strength,
Excursions. Enter RICHARD and CLIFFORD And, spite of spite, needs must I rest awhile.
Rich. Now, Clifford, I have singled thee alone : Enter EDWARD, running.
Suppose this arm is for the duke of York, Edw. Smile, gentle heaven! or strike, ungentle
And this for Rutland; both bound to revenge, death!
Wert thou environ'd with a brazen wall. For this world frowns, and Edward's sun is clouded. Clif. Now, Richard, I am with thee here alone : War. How now, my lord ? what hap? what hope This is the hand, that stabb'd thy father York ; of good ?
And this the hand, that slew thy brother Rutland;
And here's the heart, that triumphs in their death, Enter George.
And cheers these hands, that slew thy sire and Geo. Our hap is loss, our hope but sad de
brother, spair ;
To execute the like upon thyself ; Our ranks are broke, and ruin follows us :
And so, have at thee. What counsel give you, whither shall we fly?
[They fight. Warwick enters; CLIFFORD flies. Edw. Bootless is flight, they follow us with wings : Rich. Nay, Warwick, single out some other chase ; And weak we are, and cand it shun pursuit.
For I myself will hunt this wolf to death. [Exeunt.