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Q. E lix.
Would all were well!-But that [A bachelor, a handsome stripling too :
will never be ;-

I fear, our happiness is at the height.

Enter GLOSTER, HASTINGS, and DORSET. Glo. They do me wrong, and I will not endure it :

Who are they, that complain unto the king,
That I, forsooth, am stern, and love them not?
By holy Paul, they love his grace but lightly,
That fill his ear with such dissentious rumours.
Because I cannot flatter, and speak fair,
Smile in men's faces, smooth, deceive, and cog,
Duck with French nods and apish courtesy,
I must be held a rancorous enemy.
Cannot a plain man live, and think no harm,
But thus his simple truth must be abus'd
By silken, sly, insinuating Jacks?

Grey. To whom in all this presence speaks your grace ?

Glo. To thee, that hast nor honesty, nor grace.

When have I injur'd thee? when done thee wrong ?

Or thee -or thee ?-or any of your faction?
A plague upon you all! His royal grace,
Whom God preserve better than you would


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need of you:

Our brother is imprisoned by your means,
Myself disgrac'd and the nobility

Held in contempt; while great promotions
Are daily given, to ennoble those

That scarce, come two days since, were worth a noble. t

Q. Eliz. By Him, that rais'd me to this careful height

From that contented hap which I enjoy'd,
I never did incense his majesty
Against the duke of Clarence, but have been
An earnest advocate to plead for him.

My lord, you do me shameful injury,
Falsely to draw me in these vile suspects.

I wis, your grandam had a worser match. Q. Eliz. My lord of Gloster, I have too long borne


blunt upbraidings, and your bitter


By heaven, I will acquaint his majesty
Of those gross taunts I often have endur'd.
I had rather be a country servant-maid,
Than a great queen, with this condition-
To be so baited, scorn'd, and stormed at:
Small joy have I in being England's queen.

Enter Queen MARGARET, behind. Q. Mar. And lessen'd be that small, God, I beseech thee!

Thy honour, state, and seat, is due to me. Glo. What? Threat you me with telling of the king?

Tell him, and spare not look, what I have said

I will avouch in presence of the king:

I dare adventure to be sent to the Tower, 'Tis time to speak, my pains are quite forgot. Q. Mar. Out, devil! I remember them too well :

Thou kill'dst my husband Henry in the Tower, And Edward, my poor son, at Tewksbury.

Glo. Ere you were queen, ay, or your husband king,

I was a pack-horse in his great affairs;
A weeder-out of his proud adversaries,
A liberal rewarder of his friends;

To royalize bis blood, I spilt my own.

Q. Mar. Ay, and much better blood than his, or thine.

Glo. In all which time, you, and your husband Grey,

Were factious for the house of Lancaster ;-
And, Rivers, so were you :-Was not your

In Margaret's battle at Saint Alban's slain ?
Let me put in your minds, if you forget,
What you have been ere now, and what you


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Thou cacodæmon?¶ there thy kingdom is.
Riv. My lord of Gloster, in those busy days,
Which here you urge, to prove us enemies,
We follow'd then our lord, our lawful king:

Glo. You may deny that you were not the So should we you, if you should be our king.

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Riv. What, marry, may she?

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Glo. What, marry may she? marry with a I can no longer hold me patient.— [Advancing.

Hear me, you wrangling pirates, that fall out


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In sharing that which you have pill'd from


Which of you trembles not, that looks on me? If not, that, I being queen, you bow like subjects;

Yet that, by you depos'd, you quake like rebels?

Ah! gentle villain, do not turn away ! Glo. Foul wrinkled witch, what mak'st thou in my sight?

Q. Mar. But repetition of what thou hast marr'd ;

That will I make, before I let thee go.

Glo. Wert thou not banished on pain of death?

Q. Mar. I was; but I do find more pain

Than death can yield me here by my abode.
A husband, and a son, thou ow'st to me,-
And thou, a kingdom;-all of you, allegiance :
This sorrow that I have, by right is your's;
And all the pleasures you usurp, are mine.


Glo. The curse my noble father laid on thee,

When thou didst crown his warlike brows with paper,

And with thy scorns drew'st rivers from his eyes;

And then, to dry them, gav'st the duke a clout, Steep'd in the faultless blood of pretty Rutland ;

His curses, then from bitterness of soul Denounc'd against thee, are all fall'n upon thee; And God, not we, hath plagu'd thy bloody deed.

Q. Eliz. So just is God, to right the innocent. Hast. O 'twas the foulest deed to slay that babe,

And the most merciless, that e'er was heard of. Riv. Tyrants themselves wept when it was reported.

Dors. No man but prophesied revenge for it. Buck. Northumberland, then present, wept to

see it.

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That Henry's death, my lovely Edward's death,
Their kingdom's loss, my woeful banishment,
Could all but answer for that peevish brat?
Can curses pierce the clouds, and enter hea-
ven ?-

Why, then give way, dull clouds, to my quick curses !

Though not by war, by surfeit die your king,
As our's by murder, to make him a king!
Edward, thy son, that now is prince of Wales,
For Edward, my son, that was prince of Wales,
Die in his youth by like untimely violence!
Thyself a queen, for me that was a queen,
Outlive thy glory, like my wretched self!
Long may'st thou live, to wail thy children's

And see another, as I see thee now,
Deck'd in thy rights, as thou art stall'd in miue!
Long die thy happy days before thy death;
And, after many lengthen'd hours of grief,
Die neither mother, wife, nor England's queen !—
Rivers, and Dorset, you were standers by,
And so wast thou, lord Hastings, when ny son
Was stabb'd with bloody daggers; God, I pray

That none of you may live your natural age,
But by some unlook'd accident cut off!

Glo. Have done thy charm, thou hateful wither'd hag.

Q. Mar. And leave out thee? stay, dog, for thou shalt hear me.

If heaven have any grievous plague in store,
Exceeding those that I can wish upon thee,

• Pillaged.

O let them keep it, till thy sins be ripe,
And then hurl down their indignation
On thee, the troubler of the poor world's

The worm of conscience still begnaw thy soul !
Thy friends suspect for traitors while thou liv'st,
And take deep traitors for thy dearest friends!
No sleep close up that deadly eye of thine,
Unless it be while some tormenting dream
Affrights thee with a hell of ugly devils!
Thou elvish-mark'd, abortive, rooting hog!
Thou that wast seal'd in thy nativity
The slave of nature, and the son of hell!
Thou glander of thy mother's heavy womb;
Thou loathed issue of thy father's loins!
Thou rug of honour! thou detested--
Glo. Margaret.

Q. Mar. Richard!

Glo. Ha?

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Lest, to thy harm, thou move our patience. Q. Mar. Foul shame upon you! you have all mov'd mine.

Riv. Were you well serv'd, you would be taught your duty.

Q. Mar. To serve me well, you all should do me duty,

Teach me to be your queen, and you my subjects:

O serve me well, and teach yourselves that duty.

Dor. Dispute not with her, she is lunatic. Q. Mar. Peace, master marquis, you are malapert:

Your fire-new stamp of honour is scarce current: +

O that your young nobility could judge,
What 'twere to lose it, and be miserable!
They that stand high, have many blast to shake

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Glo. Ay, and much more: But I was born so high,

Our aiery † buildeth in the cedar's top,
And dallies with the wind, and scorns the sun.
Q. Mar. And turns the sun to shade ;-alas!

Witness my son, now in the shade of death; Whose bright out-shining beams tby cloudy wrath

Hath in eternal darkness folded up,
Your aiery buildeth in our aiery's nest :-
O God, that see'st it, do not suffer it;
As it was won with blood, lost be it so;
Buck. Peace, peace, for shame, if not for

Q. Mar. Urge neither charity nor shame to ine;

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Uncharitably with me have you dealt,
And shamefully by you my hopes are butcher'd.
My charity is outrage, life my shame,
And in my shame still live my sorrow's rage!
Buck. Have done, have done.

Q. Mar. O princely Buckingham, I kiss thy hand,

In sign of league and amity with thee:
Now fair befall thee, and thy noble house!
Thy garments are not spotted with our blood,
Nor thou within the compass of my curse.

Buck. Nor no one here, for curses never pass The lips of those that breathe them in the air. Q. Mar. I'll not believe bit they ascend the sky,

And there awake God's gentle-sleeping peace.
O Buckingham, beware of yonder dog;

Look, when he fawns, he bites; and, when he bites,

His venom tooth will rankle to the death:
Have not to do with him, beware of him;

And thus I clothe my naked villany
With old odd ends, stol'n forth of holy writ:
And seem a saint, when most I play the devil.
Enter two MURDERERS.

But soft, here come my executioners.-
How now, my hardy, stout resolved mates?
Are you now going to despatch this thing?
1 Murd. We are, my lord; and come to have
the warrant,


That we may be admitted where he is. Glo. Well thought upon, I have it here about [Gives the Warrant. When you have done, repair to Crosby-place. But, Sirs, be sudden in the execution, Withal obdurate, do not hear him plead; For Clarence is well spoken, and, perhaps, May move your hearts to pity, if you mark him. 1 Murd. Tut, tut, my lord, we will not stand to prate.

Talkers are no good doers; be assur'd,

Sin, death, and hell have set their marks on We go to use our hands, and not our tongues.


And all their ministers attend on him.

Glo. What doth she say, my lord of Buckingham ?

Buck. Nothing that I respect, my gracious lord.

Q. Mar. What, dost thou scorn me for my gentle counsel ?

And sooth the devil that I warn thee from?
Oh! but remember this another day,
When he shall split thy very heart with sorrow;
And say, poor Margaret was a prophetess.--
Live each of you the subjects to his hate,
And be to yours, and all of you to God's!

[Exit. Hast. My hair doth stand on end to hear her


Riv. And so doth mine; I muse, why she's at liberty.

Glo. I cannot blame her, by God's holy mother;

She hath had too much wrong, and I repent
My part thereof, that I have done to her.

Q. Eliz. I never did her any, to my knowledge.

Glo. Yet you have all the vantage of her wrong,

I was too hot to do somebody good,
That is too cold in thinking of it now.
Marry, as for Clarence, he is well repaid:
He is frank'd up to fatting for his pains ;-
God pardon them that are the cause thereof!
Riv. A virtuous and a Christian-like conclu-

To pray for them that have done scath to us.
Glo. So do I ever, being well advis'd;-
For had I curs'd now, I had curs'd myself.



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Glo. Your eyes drop mill-stones, when fools' eyes drop tears:

I like you, lads :-about your business straight; Go, go, despatch.


1 Murd. We will, my noble lord. SCENE IV-The same.-A Room in the Tower.

Enter CLARENCE and BRAKENBURY. Brak. Why looks your grace so heavily today?

Clar. Oh! I have pass'd a miserable night, So full of fearful dreams, of ugly sights, That, as I am a Christian faithful man, I would not spend another such a night, Though 'twere to buy a world of happy days; So full of dismal terror was the time. Brak. What was your dream, my lord? I pray you, tell me.

Clar. Methought, that I had broken from the

And was embark'd to cross to Burgundy;
And, in my company, my brother Gloster;
Who from my cabin tempted me to walk
Upon the hatches; thence we look'd toward

And cited up a thousand heavy times,
During the wars of York and Lancaster
That had befall'n us. As we pac'd along
Upon the giddy footing of the hatches,
Methought, that Gloster stumbled; and, in

Struck me, that thought to stay him, over-board,
Into the tumbling billows of the main.
O Lord! methought, what pain it


was to

What dreadful noise of water in mine ears!
What sights of ugly death within mine eyes!
Methought, I saw a thousand fearful wrecks;
A thousand men that fishes gnaw'd upon;
Wedges of gold, great auchors, heaps of pearl,
Inestimable stones, unvalued jewels,
All scatter'd in the bottom of the sea.
Some lay in dead men's skulls; and, in those

Where eyes did once inhabit, there were crept
(As 'twere in scorn of eyes,) reflecting gems,
That woo'd the slimy bottom of the deep,
And mock'd the dead bones that lay scatter'd

Brak. Had you such leisure in the time of death,

To gaze upon these secrets of the deep?
Clar. Methought, I had; and often did I

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Brak. Awak'd you not with this sore agony ? Clar. Oh no, my dream was lengthen'd after life;

Oh! then began the tempest to my soul!
I pass'd, methought the melancholy flood,
With that grim ferryman which poets write

Unto the kingdom of perpetual night.

The first that there did greet my stranger soul,

Was my great father-in-law, renowned War. wick,

Who cried aloud,-What scourge for perjury Can this dark monarchy afford false


1 Murd. No; he'll say 'twas Jone cowardly, when he wakes.

2 Murd. When he wakes! why, fool, he shall never wake until the great judgment day.

1 Murd. Why, then he'll say we stabb'd him sleeping.

2 Murd. The urging of that word, judgment, hath bred a kind of remorse in me. 1 Murd. What? art thou af-aid?

2 Murd. Not to kill him, having a warrant for it; but to be damn'd for killing him, from the which no warrant can defend me.

1 Murd. I thought thou had'st been reso


And so he vanish'd: Then came wand'ring by

A shadow like an angel, with bright hair Dabbled in blood; and he shriek'd out aloud, Clarence is come, false, fleeting, perjur'd Clarence,

That stabb'd me in the field by Tewksbury

Seize on him, furies, take him to your torments!

With that, methought, a legion of foul fiends
Environ'd me, and howled in mine ears
Such hideous cries, that, with the very noise,
I trembling wak'd, and, for a season after,
Could not believe but that I was in hell;
Such terrible impression made my dream.
Brak. No marvel, lord, though it affrighted

I am afraid, methinks to hear you tell it.
Clar. O Brakenbury, I have done


That now give evidence against my soul, For Edward's sake; and, see, how he requites me!

O God if my deep prayers cannot appease thee,

But thou wilt be aveng'd on my misdeeds,
Yet execute thy wrath on me alone:
O spare my guiltless wife, and my poor chil

I pray thee, gentle keeper, stay by me;
My soul is heavy, and I fain would sleep.
Brak. I will, my lord; God give your grace
good rest!-

[CLARENCE reposes himself on a Chair. Sorrow breaks seasons, and reposing hours Makes the night morning, and the noon-tide night.

Princes have but their titles for their glories,
An outward honour for an inward toil;
And for unfelt imaginations,

They often feel a world of restless cares :
So that, between their titles, and low name,
There's nothing differs but the outward fame.

Enter the two MURDERERS.

1 Murd. Ho! who's here ?

Brak. What would'st thou, fellow and how cam'st thou hither?

1 Murd. I would speak with Clarence, and 'I came hither on my legs..

Brak. What, so brief?

2 Murd. O Sir, 'tis better to be brief than tedious :

Let him see our commission; talk no more.

[A Paper is delivered to BRAKENBURY, who reads it.

Brak. I am, in this, commanded to deliver The noble duke of Clarence to your hands :I will not reason what is meant thereby, Because I will be guiltless of the meaning. Here are the keys;-there sits the duke asleep: I'll to the king; and signify to him, That thus to you I have resign'd my charge:

2 Murd. So I am, to let him live.

1 Murd. I'll back to the duke of Gloster, and tell him so.

2 Murd. Nay, I pr'ythee stay a little: I hope this holy humour of mine will change; it was wont to hold me but while one would tell twenty.

1 Murd. How dost thou feel thyself now? 2 Murd. 'Faith some certain dregs of conscience are yet within me.

1 Murd. Remember our reward, when the deed's done.

2 Murd. Come, he dies; I had forgot the reward.

1 Murd. Where's thy conscience now ? 2 Murd. In the duke of Gloster's purse. 1 Murd. So when he opens his purse to give us our reward, thy conscience flies out.

2 Murd. 'Tis no matter; let it go; there's few or none will entertain it.

1 Murd. What, if it come to thee again? 2 Murd. I'll not meddle with it; it is a dangerous thing, it makes a man a coward: a man cannot steal, but it accuseth him; a man cannot swear, but it checks him; a man cannot lis with his neighbom's wife, but it detects bim : 'Tis a blushing shame-fac'd spirit, that mutinies in a man's bosom; it fills one full of obstacles: it made me once restore a purse of gold, that by chance I found; it beggars any man, that keeps it: it is turned out of all towns and cities for a dangerous thing; and every man, that means to live well, endeavours to trust to himself, and live without it.

1 Murd. 'Zounds, it is even now at my elbow, persuading me not to kill the duke.

2 Murd. Take the devil in thy mind, and believe him not: he would insinuate with thee, but to make thee sigh.

1 Murd. I am strong-fram'd, he cannot prevail with me.

2 Murd. Spoke like a tall fellow, that respects his reputation. Come, shall we fall to work?

1 Murd. Take him over the costard + with the hilts of thy sword, and then throw him into the malmsey-butt, in the next room.

2 Murd. O excellent device! and make a sop of him.

1 Murd. Soft! he wakes.

2 Murd. Strike.

1 Murd. No, we'll reason with him.

Clar. Where art thou, keeper ? give me a

cup of wine.

1 Mur. You shall have wine enough, my

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1 Murd. You may, Sir; 'tis a point of wis-Your

dom :

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me so,

And therefore cannot have the hearts to do it.
Wherein, my friends, have I offended you?

1 Murd. Offended us you have not, but the king.

Clar. I shall be reconcil'd to him again.

2 Murd. Never, my lord; therefore prepare to die.

Clur. Are you call'd forth from out a world of men,

To slay the innocent? What is my offence?
Where is the evidence that doth accuse me?
What lawful quest have given their verdict

Unto the frowning judge? or who pronounc'd
The bitter sentence of poor Clarence' death?
Before I be convict by course of law,

To threaten me with death is most unlawful.
I charge you, as you hope for any goodness
By Christ's dear blood shed for our grievous

That you depart, and lay no hands on me;
The deed you undertake is damnable.

1 Murd. What we will do, we do upon command.

2 Murd. And he, that hath commanded, is our king.

Clar. Erroneous vassal! the great King of kings

Hath in the table of his law commanded,
That thou shalt do no murder; Wilt thou then
Spurn at his edict, and fulfil a man's?
Take heed; for he holds vengeance in his hand,
To hurl upon their heads that break his law.
2 Murd. And that same vengeance doth he
hurl on thee,

For false forswearing, and for murder too :
Thou didst receive the sacrament, to fight
In quarrel + of the house of Lancaster.

1 Murd. And, like a traitor to the name of God,

Didst break that vow; and, with thy treacherous blade,

Unrip'dst the bowels of thy sovereign's son. 2 Murd. Whom thou wast sworn to cherish and defend.

1 Murd. How canst thou urge God's dreadful law to us,

When thou hast broke it in such dear

Clar. Alas! for whose sake did I that
deed ?

For Edward, for my brother, for his sake :
He sends you not to murder me for this;
For in that sin he is as deep as I.
If God will be avenged for the deed,
O know you that he doth it publicly;
Take not the quarrel from his powerful arm;
He needs no indirect nor lawless course,

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To cut off those that have offended him.



1 Murd. Who made thee then a bloody minister,

When gallant-springing, brave Plantagenet, That princely novice, t was struck dead by thee?

Clar. My brother's love, the devil, and my rage.

1 Murd. Thy brother's love, our duty, and thy fault,

Provoke us hither now to slaughter thee.

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Clar. If you do love my brother, hate not

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2 Murd. You are deceiv'd, your brother Gloster hates you.

Clar. Oh! no; he loves me, and he holds me dear:

Go you to him from me.

Both Murd. Ay, so we will.

Clar. Tell him, when that our princely fa ther York

Bless'd his three sons with his victorious arm, And charg'd us from his soul to love each other,

He little thought of this divided friendship:
Bid Gloster think on this and he will weep.

1 Murd. Ay, mill-stones; as he lesson'd us to weep.

Clar. Oh! do not slander him, for he is kind.

1 Murd. Right, as snow in harvest. Come, you deceive yourself;

'Tis he that sends us to destroy you here. Clar. It cannot be; for he bewept my for.


And hugg'd ine in his arms, and swore, with sobs,

That he would labour my delivery.

1 Murd. Why so he doth, when he delivers


From this earth's thraldom to the joys of heaven.

2 Murd. Make peace with God, for you must die, my lord.

Clar. Hast thou that holy feeling in thy soul,

To counsel me to make my peace with God,
And art thou yet to thy own soul so blind,
That thou wilt war with God, by murd'ring

Ah! Sirs, consider, he, that sent you on
To do this deed, will hate you for the deed.
2 Murd. What shall we do?
Clar. Relent, and save your souls.

1 Murd. Relent! 'tis cowardly, and WO


Clar. Not to relent, is beastly, savage, devilish.

Which of you, if you were a prince's son,
Being pent from liberty, as I am now,-
If two such murderers as yourselves came to

Would not entreat for life?

My friend, I spy some pity in thy looks;
Oh! if thine eye be not a flatterer,
Come thou on my side, and entreat for me,
As you would beg, were you in my distress.
A begging prince what beggar pities not !
2 Murd. Look behind you, my lord.

1 Murd. Take that, and that; if all this will
not do,
[Stabs him.

I'll drown you in the malmsey-butt within.

[Exit with the body. 2 Murd. A bloody deed, and desperately despatch'd! How fain, like Pilate, would I wash my hands Of this most grievous guilty murder done!

Re-enter first MURDERER.

1 Murd. How now? what mean'st thou, that thou help'st me not?

By heaven, the duke shall know how slack you have been.

2 Murd. I would he knew, that I had sav'd

his brother!

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