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K. Rich. Cousin, throw down your gage; do you
begin. Boling. O, God defend my soul from such foul sin! Shall I seem crest-fallen in my father's sight? Or with pale beggar-fear impeach my height Before this outdar'd dastard ! Ere my tongue Shall wound mine honour with such feeble wrong, Or sound so base a parle, my teeth shall tear The slavish motive of recanting fear; And spit it bleeding in his high disgrace, Where shame doth harbour, even in Mowbray's face.
[Exit Gaunt. K. Rich. We were not born to sue, but to com
mand : Which since we cannot do to make you friends, Be ready, as your lives shall answer it, At Coventry, upon Saint Lambert's day; There shall your swords and lances arbitrate The swelling difference of your settled hate; Since we cannot atonea you, we shall see Justice design the victor's chivalry:Marshal, command our officers at arms Be ready to direct these home-alarms. [Exeunt.
A Room in the Duke of Lancaster's
Enter Gaunt, and Duchess of Gloster. Gaunt. Alas! the part 4 I had in Gloster's blood Doth more solicit me, than your exclaims, To stir against the butchers of his life. But since correction lieth in those hands, Which made the fault that we cannot correct, Put we our quarrel to the will of heaven ; Who when he sees the hours ripe on earth, Will rain hot vengeance on offenders' heads.
Duch. Finds brotherhood in thee no sharper spur? Hath love in thy old blood no living fire ? Edward's seven sons, whereof thyself art one, Were as seven phials of his sacred blood, Or seven fair branches springing from one root: Some of those seven are dried by nature's course, Some of those branches by the destinies cut: But Thomas, my dear lord, my life, my Gloster, One phial full of Edward's sacred blood, One flourishing branch of his most royal root, Is crack'd, and all the precious liquor spilt; Is hack'd down, and his summer leaves all faded, By envy's hand, and murder's bloody axe. Ah, Gaunt! his blood was thine; that bed, that womb, That mettle, that self-mould, that fashion'd thee,
Made him a man; and though thou liv'st, and
Duch. Where then, alas! may I complain myself?
fence. · Duch. Why then, I will. Farewell, old Gaunt. Thou go'st to Coventry, there to behold Our cousin Hereford and fell Mowbray fight : O, sit my husband's wrongs on Hereford's spear, That it may enter butcher Mowbray's breast ! Or, if misfortune miss the first career, Be Mowbray's sins so heavy in his bosom, That they may break his foaming courser's back,
And throw the rider headlong in the lists,
Gaunt, Sister, farewell : I must to Coventry :
it falls, Not with the empty hollowness, but weight: I take
leave before I have begun; For sorrow ends not when it seemeth done. Commend me to my brother, Edmund York, Lo, this is all :-Nay, yet depart not so ; Though this be all, do not so quickly go ; I shall remember more. Bid him-O, what ?With all good speed at Plashy visit me: Alack, and what shall good old York there see, But empty lodgings and unfurnish'd walls, Unpeopled offices, untrodden stones ? And what cheer there for welcome, but my groans? Therefore commend me; let him not come there, To seek out sorrow that dwells
where : Desolate, desolate, will I hence, and die; The last leave of thee takes my weeping eye.
6 A base villain.
8 Her house
Gosford Green, near Coventry.
Lists set out, and a Throne. Heralds, 8c, attending.
Enter the Lord Marshal, and AUMERLE. Mar. My lord Aumerle, is Harry Hereford arm'd? Aum. Yea, at all points; and longs to enter in.
Mar. The duke of Norfolk, sprightfully and bold, Stays but the summons of the appellant's trumpet. Aum. Why then, the champions are prepar'd, and
stay For nothing but his majesty's approach.
Flourish of Trumpets. Enter King RICHARD, who
takes his seat on his throne; Gaunt, and several Noblemen, who take their places. A Trumpet is sounded, and answered by another Trumpet within. Then Enter NorFOLK in armour, preceded by a Herald.
K. Rich. Marshal, demand of yonder champion The cause of his arrival here in arms : Ask him his name; and orderly proceed To swear him in the justice of his cause. Mur. In God's name, and the king's, say who thou
art, And why thou com'st, thus knightly clad in arms: Against what man thou com'st, and what thy quarrel : Speak truly, on thy knighthood, and thy oath ; And so defend thee heaven, and thy valour!