Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
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Henry VI, Part 2 (Folio 1, 1623)


Enter three or foure Petitioners, the Armorers
385Man being one.
1. Pet. My Masters, let's stand close, my Lord Pro-
tector will come this way by and by, and then wee may
deliuer our Supplications in the Quill.
2. Pet. Marry the Lord protect him, for hee's a good
390man, Iesu blesse him.
Enter Suffolke, and Queene.
Peter. Here a comes me thinkes, and the Queene with
him: Ile be the first sure.
2. Pet. Come backe foole, this is the Duke of Suffolk,
395and not my Lord Protector.
Suff. How now fellow: would'st any thing with me?
1. Pet. I pray my Lord pardon me, I tooke ye for my
Lord Protector.
Queene. To my Lord Protector? Are your Supplica-
400tions to his Lordship? Let me see them: what is thine?
1. Pet. Mine is, and't please your Grace, against Iohn
Goodman, my Lord Cardinals Man, for keeping my House,
and Lands, and Wife and all, from me.
Suff. Thy Wife too? that's some Wrong indeede.
405What's yours? What's heere? Against the Duke of
Suffolke, for enclosing the Commons of Melforde. How
now, Sir Knaue?
2. Pet. Alas Sir, I am but a poore Petitioner of our
whole Towneship.
410Peter. Against my Master Thomas Horner, for saying,
That the Duke of Yorke was rightfull Heire to the
Crowne.
Queene. What say'st thou? Did the Duke of Yorke
say, hee was rightfull Heire to the Crowne?
415Peter. That my Mistresse was? No forsooth: my Master
said, That he was, and that the King was an Vsurper.
Suff. Who is there?
Enter Seruant.
Take this fellow in, and send for his Master with a Purse-
420uant presently: wee'le heare more of your matter before
the King.
Exit.
Queene. And as for you that loue to be protected
Vnder the Wings of our Protectors Grace,
Begin your Suites anew, and sue to him.
425
Teare the Supplication.
Away, base Cullions: Suffolke let them goe.
All. Come, let's be gone.
Exit.
Queene. My Lord of Suffolke, say, is this the guise?
Is this the Fashions in the Court of England?
430Is this the Gouernment of Britaines Ile?
And this the Royaltie of Albions King?
What, shall King Henry be a Pupill still,
Vnder the surly Glosters Gouernance?
Am I a Queene in Title and in Stile,
435And must be made a Subiect to a Duke?
I tell thee Poole, when in the Citie Tours
Thou ran'st a-tilt in honor of my Loue,
And stol'st away the Ladies hearts of France;
I thought King Henry had resembled thee,
440In Courage, Courtship, and Proportion:
But all his minde is bent to Holinesse,
To number Aue-Maries on his Beades:
His Champions, are the Prophets and Apostles,
His Weapons, holy Sawes of sacred Writ,
445His Studie is his Tilt-yard, and his Loues
Are brazen Images of Canonized Saints.
I would the Colledge of the Cardinalls
Would chuse him Pope, and carry him to Rome,
And set the Triple Crowne vpon his Head;
450That were a State fit for his Holinesse.
Suff. Madame be patient: as I was cause
Your Highnesse came to England, so will I
In England worke your Graces full content.
Queene. Beside the haughtie Protector, haue we Beauford
455The imperious Churchman; Somerset, Buckingham,
And grumbling Yorke: and not the least of these,
But can doe more in England then the King.
Suff. And he of these, that can doe most of all,
Cannot doe more in England then the Neuils:
460Salisbury and Warwick are no simple Peeres.
Queene. Not all these Lords do vex me halfe so much,
As that prowd Dame, the Lord Protectors Wife:
She sweepes it through the Court with troups of Ladies,
More like an Empresse, then Duke Humphreyes Wife:
465Strangers in Court, doe take her for the Queene:
She beares a Dukes Reuenewes on her backe,
And in her heart she scornes our Pouertie:
Shall I not liue to be aueng'd on her?
Contemptuous base-borne Callot as she is,
470She vaunted 'mongst her Minions t'other day,
The very trayne of her worst wearing Gowne,
Was better worth then all my Fathers Lands,
Till Suffolke gaue two Dukedomes for his Daughter.
Suff. Madame, my selfe haue lym'd a Bush for her,
475And plac't a Quier of such enticing Birds,
That she will light to listen to the Layes,
And neuer mount to trouble you againe.
So let her rest: and Madame list to me,
For I am bold to counsaile you in this;
480Although we fancie not the Cardinall,
Yet must we ioyne with him and with the Lords,
Till we haue brought Duke Humphrey in disgrace.
As for the Duke of Yorke, this late Complaint
Will make but little for his benefit:
485So one by one wee'le weed them all at last,
And you your selfe shall steere the happy Helme.
Exit.
Sound a Sennet.
Enter the King, Duke Humfrey, Cardinall, Bucking-
ham, Yorke, Salisbury, Warwicke,
490and the Duchesse.
King. For my part, Noble Lords, I care not which,
Or Somerset, or Yorke, all's one to me.
Yorke. If Yorke haue ill demean'd himselfe in France,
Then let him be denay'd the Regent-ship.
495Som. If Somerset be vnworthy of the Place,
Let Yorke be Regent, I will yeeld to him.
Warw. Whether your Grace be worthy, yea or no,
Dispute not that, Yorke is the worthyer.
Card. Ambitious Warwicke, let thy betters speake.
500Warw. The Cardinall's not my better in the field.
Buck. All in this presence are thy betters, Warwicke.
Warw. Warwicke may liue to be the best of all.
Salisb. Peace Sonne, and shew some reason Buckingham
Why Somerset should be preferr'd in this?
505Queene. Because the King forsooth will haue it so.
Humf. Madame, the King is old enough himselfe
To giue his Censure: These are no Womens matters.
Queene. If he be old enough, what needs your Grace
To be Protector of his Excellence?
510Humf. Madame, I am Protector of the Realme,
And at his pleasure will resigne my Place.
Suff. Resigne it then, and leaue thine insolence.
Since thou wert King; as who is King, but thou?
The Common-wealth hath dayly run to wrack,
515The Dolphin hath preuayl'd beyond the Seas,
And all the Peeres and Nobles of the Realme
Haue beene as Bond-men to thy Soueraigntie.
Card. The Commons hast thou rackt, the Clergies Bags
Are lanke and leane with thy Extortions.
520Som. Thy sumptuous Buildings, and thy Wiues Attyre
Haue cost a masse of publique Treasurie.
Buck. Thy Crueltie in execution
Vpon Offendors, hath exceeded Law,
And left thee to the mercy of the Law.
525Queene. Thy sale of Offices and Townes in France,
If they were knowne, as the suspect is great,
Would make thee quickly hop without thy Head.
Exit Humfrey.
Giue me my Fanne: what, Mynion, can ye not?
530
She giues the Duchesse a box on the eare.
I cry you mercy, Madame: was it you?
Duch. Was't I? yea, I it was, prowd French-woman:
Could I come neere your Beautie with my Nayles,
I could set my ten Commandements in your face.
535King. Sweet Aunt be quiet, 'twas against her will.
Duch. Against her will, good King? looke to't in time,
Shee'le hamper thee, and dandle thee like a Baby:
Though in this place most Master weare no Breeches,
She shall not strike Dame Elianor vnreueng'd.
540
Exit Elianor.
Buck. Lord Cardinall, I will follow Elianor,
And listen after Humfrey, how he proceedes:
Shee's tickled now, her Fume needs no spurres,
Shee'le gallop farre enough to her destruction.
545
Exit Buckingham.
Enter Humfrey.
Humf. Now Lords, my Choller being ouer-blowne,
With walking once about the Quadrangle,
I come to talke of Common-wealth Affayres.
550As for your spightfull false Obiections,
Proue them, and I lye open to the Law:
But God in mercie so deale with my Soule,
As I in dutie loue my King and Countrey.
But to the matter that we haue in hand:
555I say, my Soueraigne, Yorke is meetest man
To be your Regent in the Realme of France.
Suff. Before we make election, giue me leaue
To shew some reason, of no little force,
That Yorke is most vnmeet of any man.
560Yorke. Ile tell thee, Suffolke, why I am vnmeet.
First, for I cannot flatter thee in Pride:
Next, if I be appointed for the Place,
My Lord of Somerset will keepe me here,
Without Discharge, Money, or Furniture,
565Till France be wonne into the Dolphins hands:
Last time I danc't attendance on his will,
Till Paris was besieg'd, famisht, and lost.
Warw. That can I witnesse, and a fouler fact
Did neuer Traytor in the Land commit.
570Suff. Peace head-strong Warwicke.
Warw. Image of Pride, why should I hold my peace?
Enter Armorer and his Man.
Suff. Because here is a man accused of Treason,
Pray God the Duke of Yorke excuse himselfe.
575Yorke. Doth any one accuse Yorke for a Traytor?
King. What mean'st thou, Suffolke? tell me, what are
these?
Suff. Please it your Maiestie, this is the man
That doth accuse his Master of High Treason;
580His words were these: That Richard, Duke of Yorke,
Was rightfull Heire vnto the English Crowne,
And that your Maiestie was an Vsurper.
King. Say man, were these thy words?
Armorer. And't shall please your Maiestie, I neuer sayd
585nor thought any such matter: God is my witnesse, I am
falsely accus'd by the Villaine.
Peter. By these tenne bones, my Lords, hee did speake
them to me in the Garret one Night, as wee were scow-
ring my Lord of Yorkes Armor.
590Yorke. Base Dunghill Villaine, and Mechanicall,
Ile haue thy Head for this thy Traytors speech:
I doe beseech your Royall Maiestie,
Let him haue all the rigor of the Law.
Armorer. Alas, my Lord, hang me if euer I spake the
595words: my accuser is my Prentice, and when I did cor-
rect him for his fault the other day, he did vow vpon his
knees he would be euen with me: I haue good witnesse
of this; therefore I beseech your Maiestie, doe not cast
away an honest man for a Villaines accusation.
600King. Vnckle, what shall we say to this in law?
Humf. This doome, my Lord, if I may iudge:
Let Somerset be Regent o're the French,
Because in Yorke this breedes suspition;
And let these haue a day appointed them
605For single Combat, in conuenient place,
For he hath witnesse of his seruants malice:
This is the Law, and this Duke Humfreyes doome.
Som. I humbly thanke your Royall Maiestie.
Armorer. And I accept the Combat willingly.
610Peter. Alas, my Lord, I cannot fight; for Gods sake
pitty my case: the spight of man preuayleth against me.
O Lord haue mercy vpon me, I shall neuer be able to
fight a blow: O Lord my heart.
Humf. Sirrha, or you must fight, or else be hang'd.
615King. Away with them to Prison: and the day of
Combat, shall be the last of the next moneth. Come
Somerset, wee'le see thee sent away.
Flourish. Exeunt.