Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Not Peer Reviewed

Henry VI, Part 2 (Folio 1, 1623)


Enter Beuis, and Iohn Holland.
2320Beuis. Come and get thee a sword, though made of a
Lath, they haue bene vp these two dayes.
Hol. They haue the more neede to sleepe now then.
Beuis. I tell thee, Iacke Cade the Cloathier, meanes to
dresse the Common-wealth and turne it, and set a new
2325nap vpon it.
Hol. So he had need, for 'tis thred-bare. Well, I say,
it was neuer merrie world in England, since Gentlemen
came vp.
Beuis. O miserable Age: Vertue is not regarded in
2330Handy-crafts men.
Hol. The Nobilitie thinke scorne to goe in Leather
Aprons.
Beuis. Nay more, the Kings Councell are no good
Workemen.
2335Hol. True: and yet it is said, Labour in thy Vocati-
on: which is as much to say, as let the Magistrates be la-
bouring men, and therefore should we be Magistrates.
Beuis. Thou hast hit it: for there's no better signe of a
braue minde, then a hard hand.
2340Hol. I see them, I see them: There's Bests Sonne, the
Tanner of Wingham.
Beuis. Hee shall haue the skinnes of our enemies, to
make Dogges Leather of.
Hol. And Dicke the Butcher.
2345Beuis. Then is sin strucke downe like an Oxe, and ini-
quities throate cut like a Calfe.
Hol. And Smith the Weauer.
Beu. Argo, their thred of life is spun.
Hol. Come, come, let's fall in with them.
2350
Drumme. Enter Cade, Dicke Butcher, Smith the Weauer,
and a Sawyer, with infinite numbers.
Cade. Wee Iohn Cade, so tearm'd of our supposed Fa-
ther.
But. Or rather of stealing a Cade of Herrings.
2355Cade. For our enemies shall faile before vs, inspired
with the spirit of putting down Kings and Princes. Com-
mand silence.
But. Silence.
Cade. My Father was a Mortimer.
2360But. He was an honest man, and a good Bricklayer.
Cade. My mother a Plantagenet.
Butch. I knew her well, she was a Midwife.
Cade. My wife descended of the Lacies.
But. She was indeed a Pedlers daughter, & sold many
2365Laces.
Weauer. But now of late, not able to trauell with her
furr'd Packe, she washes buckes here at home.
Cade. Therefore am I of an honorable house.
But. I by my faith, the field is honourable, and there
2370was he borne, vnder a hedge: for his Father had neuer a
house but the Cage.
Cade. Valiant I am.
Weauer. A must needs, for beggery is valiant.
Cade. I am able to endure much.
2375But. No question of that: for I haue seene him whipt
three Market dayes together.
Cade. I feare neither sword, nor fire.
Wea. He neede not feare the sword, for his Coate is of
proofe.
2380But. But me thinks he should stand in feare of fire, be-
ing burnt i'th hand for stealing of Sheepe.
Cade. Be braue then, for your Captaine is Braue, and
Vowes Reformation. There shall be in England, seuen
halfe peny Loaues sold for a peny: the three hoop'd pot,
2385shall haue ten hoopes, and I wil make it Fellony to drink
small Beere. All the Realme shall be in Common, and in
Cheapside shall my Palfrey go to grasse: and when I am
King, as King I will be.
All. God saue your Maiesty.
2390Cade. I thanke you good people. There shall bee no
mony, all shall eate and drinke on my score, and I will
apparrell them all in one Liuery, that they may agree like
Brothers, and worship me their Lord.
But. The first thing we do, let's kill all the Lawyers.
2395Cade. Nay, that I meane to do. Is not this a lamenta-
ble thing, that of the skin of an innocent Lambe should
be made Parchment; that Parchment being scribeld ore,
should vndoe a man. Some say the Bee stings, but I say,
'tis the Bees waxe: for I did but seale once to a thing, and
2400I was neuer mine owne man since. How now? Who's
there?
Enter a Clearke.
Weauer. The Clearke of Chartam: hee can write and
reade, and cast accompt.
2405Cade. O monstrous.
Wea. We tooke him setting of boyes Copies.
Cade. Here's a Villaine.
Wea. Ha's a Booke in his pocket with red Letters in't
Cade. Nay then he is a Coniurer.
2410But. Nay, he can make Obligations, and write Court
hand.
Cade. I am sorry for't: The man is a proper man of
mine Honour: vnlesse I finde him guilty, he shall not die.
Come hither sirrah, I must examine thee: What is thy
2415name?
Clearke. Emanuell.
But. They vse to writ it on the top of Letters: 'Twill
go hard with you.
Cade. Let me alone: Dost thou vse to write thy name?
2420Or hast thou a marke to thy selfe, like a honest plain dea-
ling man?
Clearke. Sir I thanke God, I haue bin so well brought
vp, that I can write my name.
All. He hath confest: away with him: he's a Villaine
2425and a Traitor.
Cade. Away with him I say: Hang him with his Pen
and Inke-horne about his necke.
Exit one with the Clearke
Enter Michael.
2430Mich. Where's our Generall?
Cade. Heere I am thou particular fellow.
Mich. Fly, fly, fly, Sir Humfrey Stafford and his brother
are hard by, with the Kings Forces.
Cade. Stand villaine, stand, or Ile fell thee downe: he
2435shall be encountred with a man as good as himselfe. He
is but a Knight, is a?
Mich. No.
Cade. To equall him I will make my selfe a knight pre-
sently; Rise vp Sir Iohn Mortimer. Now haue at him.
2440
Enter Sir Humfrey Stafford, and his Brother,
with Drum and Soldiers.
Staf. Rebellious Hinds, the filth and scum of Kent,
Mark'd for the Gallowes: Lay your Weapons downe,
Home to your Cottages: forsake this Groome.
2445The King is mercifull, if you reuolt.
Bro. But angry, wrathfull, and inclin'd to blood,
If you go forward: therefore yeeld, or dye.
Cade. As for these silken-coated slaues I passe not,
It is to you good people, that I speake,
2450Ouer whom (in time to come) I hope to raigne:
For I am rightfull heyre vnto the Crowne.
Staff. Villaine, thy Father was a Playsterer,
And thou thy selfe a Sheareman, art thou not?
Cade. And Adam was a Gardiner.
2455Bro. And what of that?
Cade. Marry, this Edmund Mortimer Earle of March,
married the Duke of Clarence daughter, did he not?
Staf. I sir.
Cade. By her he had two children at one birth.
2460Bro. That's false.
Cade. I, there's the question; But I say, 'tis true:
The elder of them being put to nurse,
Was by a begger-woman stolne away,
And ignorant of his birth and parentage,
2465Became a Bricklayer, when he came to age.
His sonne am I, deny it if you can.
But. Nay, 'tis too true, therefore he shall be King.
Wea. Sir, he made a Chimney in my Fathers house, &
the brickes are aliue at this day to testifie it: therefore
2470deny it not.
Staf. And will you credit this base Drudges Wordes,
that speakes he knowes not what.
All. I marry will we: therefore get ye gone.
Bro. Iacke Cade, the D. of York hath taught you this
2475Cade. He lyes, for I inuented it my selfe. Go too Sir-
rah, tell the King from me, that for his Fathers sake Hen-
ry the fift, (in whose time, boyes went to Span-counter
for French Crownes) I am content he shall raigne, but Ile
be Protector ouer him.
2480Butcher. And furthermore, wee'l haue the Lord Sayes
head, for selling the Dukedome of Maine.
Cade And good reason: for thereby is England main'd
And faine to go with a staffe, but that my puissance holds
it vp. Fellow-Kings, I tell you, that that Lord Say hath
2485gelded the Commonwealth, and made it an Eunuch: &
more then that, he can speake French, and therefore hee is
a Traitor.
Staf. O grosse and miserable ignorance.
Cade. Nay answer if you can: The Frenchmen are our
2490enemies: go too then, I ask but this: Can he that speaks
with the tongue of an enemy, be a good Councellour, or
no?
All. No, no, and therefore wee'l haue his head.
Bro. Well, seeing gentle words will not preuayle,
2495Assaile them with the Army of the King.
Staf. Herald away, and throughout euery Towne,
Proclaime them Traitors that are vp with Cade,
That those which flye before the battell ends,
May euen in their Wiues and Childrens sight,
2500Be hang'd vp for example at their doores:
And you that be the Kings Friends follow me.
Exit.
Cade. And you that loue the Commons, follow me:
Now shew your selues men, 'tis for Liberty.
We will not leaue one Lord, one Gentleman:
2505Spare none, but such as go in clouted shooen,
For they are thrifty honest men, and such
As would (but that they dare not) take our parts.
But. They are all in order, and march toward vs.
Cade. But then are we in order, when we are most out
2510of order. Come, march forward.