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Thy life hath that dishonour'd. K. Rich. Then, by myself,Q. Eliz.
Thyself is self-mis-usid. K. Rich. Why then, by God, Q. Eliz.
God's wrong is most of all. If thou had'st fear'd to break an oath by him, The unity, the king thy brother made, Had not been broken, nor my brother slain. If thou had'st fear'd to break an oath by him, The imperial metal, circling now thy head, Had grac'd the tender temples of my child; And both the princes had been breathing here, Which now, two tender bed-fellows for dust, Thy broken faith hath made a prey for worms. What canst thou swear by now? K. Rich.
By the time to come. Q. Eliz. That thou hast wronged in the time o'er
K. Rich. As I intend to prosper, and repent !
Day, yield me not thy light; nor, night, thy rest!
Q. Eliz. Shall I be tempted of the devil thus ?
K. Rich. But in your daughter's womb I bury them: Where, in that nest of spicery, they shall breed Selves of themselves, to your recomforture.
Q. Eliz. Shall I go win my daughter to thy will?
Q. Eliz. I go.—Write to me very shortly,
you shall understand from me her mind.
R. Rich. Bear her my true love's kiss, and so fare
well. [Kissing her. Exit Q. Elizabeth. Relenting fool, and shallow, changing-woman! How now? what news?
Enter RATCLIFF; CATES BY following.
Rat. Most mighty sovereign, on the western coast Rideth a puissant navy; to the shore Throng many doubtful hollow-hearted friends, Unarm’d, and unresolv'd to beat them back : "Tis thought, that Richmond is their admiral; And there they hull, expecting but the aid Of Buckingham, to welcome them ashore. K. Rich. 25 Some light-foot friend post to the duke
of Norfolk :-
Cate, Here, my good lord.
Catesby, fly to the duke. Cate. I will, my lord, with all convenient haste.
K. Rich. Ratcliff, come hither : Post to Salisbury ; When thou com'st thither,- Dull unmindful villain,
[To Catesby. Why stay'st thou here, and go'st not to the duke? Cate. First, mighty liege, tell me your highness'
pleasure, What from your grace I shall deliver to him. K. Rich. O, true, good Catesby ;-Bid him levy
straight The greatest strength and power he can make, And meet me suddenly at Salisbury.
[Erit. Rat. What, may it please you, shall I do at Salis
bury? K. Rich. Why, what would'st thou do there, before
Rat. Your highness told me, I should post before.
Enter STANLEY. K. Rich. My mind is chang'd.-Stanley, what news
with you? Stan. None good, my liege, to please you with the
hearing; Nor none so bad, but well may be reported.
K. Rich. Heyday, a riddle! neither good, nor bad! What need'st thou run so many miles about, When thou may'st tell thy tale the nearest way? Once more, what news? Stan.
Richmond is on the seas. K. Rich. There let him sink, and be the seas on
Stan. I know not, mighty sovereign, but by guess.
sway'd ? Is the king dead ? the empire unpossess'd ? What heir of York is there alive, but we?
And who is England's king, but great York's heir ?
? Stan. Unless for that, my liege, I cannot guess.
K. Rich. Unless for that he comes to be your liege, You cannot guess wherefore the Welshman comes. Thou wilt revolt, and fly to him, I fear.
Stan. No, mighty liege; therefore mistrust me not. K. Rich. Where is thy power then, to beat him
back? Where be thy tenants, and thy followers ? Are they not now upon the western shore, Safe-conducting the rebels from their ships? Stan. No, my good lord, my friends are in the
north. K. Rieh. Cold friends to me: What do they in the
north, When they should serve their sovereign in the west? Stan. They have not been commanded, mighty
Most mighty sovereign,