Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
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Henry VI, Part 3 (Folio 1, 1623)



152
The third Part of Henry the Sixt.

How could'st thou drayne the Life-blood of the Child,
605To bid the Father wipe his eyes withall,
And yet be seene to beare a Womans face?
Women are soft, milde, pittifull, and flexible;
Thou, sterne, obdurate, flintie, rough, remorselesse.
Bidst thou me rage? why now thou hast thy wish.
610Would'st haue me weepe? why now thou hast thy will.
For raging Wind blowes vp incessant showers,
And when the Rage allayes, the Raine begins.
These Teares are my sweet Rutlands Obsequies,
And euery drop cryes vengeance for his death,
615'Gainst thee fell Clifford, and thee false French-woman.
Northumb. Beshrew me, but his passions moues me so,
That hardly can I check my eyes from Teares.
Yorke. That Face of his,
The hungry Caniballs would not haue toucht,
620Would not haue stayn'd with blood:
But you are more inhumane, more inexorable,
Oh, tenne times more then Tygers of Hyrcania.
See, ruthlesse Queene, a haplesse Fathers Teares:
This Cloth thou dipd'st in blood of my sweet Boy,
625And I with Teares doe wash the blood away.
Keepe thou the Napkin, and goe boast of this,
And if thou tell'st the heauie storie right,
Vpon my Soule, the hearers will shed Teares:
Yea, euen my Foes will shed fast-falling Teares,
630And say, Alas, it was a pittious deed.
There, take the Crowne, and with the Crowne, my Curse,
And in thy need, such comfort come to thee,
As now I reape at thy too cruell hand.
Hard-hearted Clifford, take me from the World,
635My Soule to Heauen, my Blood vpon your Heads.
Northumb. Had he been slaughter-man to all my Kinne,
I should not for my Life but weepe with him,
To see how inly Sorrow gripes his Soule.
Queen. What, weeping ripe, my Lord Northumberland?
640Thinke but vpon the wrong he did vs all,
And that will quickly drie thy melting Teares.
Clifford. Heere's for my Oath, heere's for my Fathers
Death.
Queene. And heere's to right our gentle-hearted
645King.
Yorke. Open thy Gate of Mercy, gracious God,
My Soule flyes through these wounds, to seeke out thee.
Queene. Off with his Head, and set it on Yorke Gates,
So Yorke may ouer-looke the Towne of Yorke.
650
Flourish. Exit.

A March. Enter Edward, Richard,
and their power.

Edward. I wonder how our Princely Father scap't:
Or whether he be scap't away, or no,
655From Cliffords and Northumberlands pursuit?
Had he been ta'ne, we should haue heard the newes;
Had he beene slaine, we should haue heard the newes:
Or had he scap't, me thinkes we should haue heard
The happy tidings of his good escape.
660How fares my Brother? why is he so sad?
Richard. I cannot ioy, vntill I be resolu'd
Where our right valiant Father is become.
I saw him in the Battaile range about,
And watcht him how he singled Clifford forth.
665Me thought he bore him in the thickest troupe,
As doth a Lyon in a Heard of Neat,
Or as a Beare encompass'd round with Dogges:
Who hauing pincht a few, and made them cry,
The rest stand all aloofe, and barke at him.
670So far'd our Father with his Enemies,
So fled his Enemies my Warlike Father:
Me thinkes 'tis prize enough to be his Sonne.
See how the Morning opes her golden Gates,
And takes her farwell of the glorious Sunne.
675How well resembles it the prime of Youth,
Trimm'd like a Yonker, prauncing to his Loue?
Ed. Dazle mine eyes, or doe I see three Sunnes?
Rich. Three glorious Sunnes, each one a perfect Sunne,
Not seperated with the racking Clouds,
680But seuer'd in a pale cleare-shining Skye.
See, see, they ioyne, embrace, and seeme to kisse,
As if they vow'd some League inuiolable.
Now are they but one Lampe, one Light, one Sunne:
In this, the Heauen figures some euent.
685Edward. 'Tis wondrous strange,
The like yet neuer heard of.
I thinke it cites vs (Brother) to the field,
That wee, the Sonnes of braue Plantagenet,
Each one alreadie blazing by our meedes,
690Should notwithstanding ioyne our Lights together,
And ouer-shine the Earth, as this the World.
What ere it bodes, hence-forward will I beare
Vpon my Targuet three faire shining Sunnes.
Richard. Nay, beare three Daughters:
695By your leaue, I speake it,
You loue the Breeder better then the Male.

Enter one blowing.

But what art thou, whose heauie Lookes fore-tell
Some dreadfull story hanging on thy Tongue?
700Mess. Ah, one that was a wofull looker on,
When as the Noble Duke of Yorke was slaine,
Your Princely Father, and my louing Lord.
Edward. Oh speake no more, for I haue heard too
much.
705Richard. Say how he dy'de, for I will heare it all.
Mess. Enuironed he was with many foes,
And stood against them, as the hope of Troy
Against the Greekes, that would haue entred Troy.
But Hercules himselfe must yeeld to oddes:
710And many stroakes, though with a little Axe,
Hewes downe and fells the hardest-tymber'd Oake.
By many hands your Father was subdu'd,
But onely slaught'red by the irefull Arme
Of vn-relenting Clifford, and the Queene:
715Who crown'd the gracious Duke in high despight,
Laugh'd in his face: and when with griefe he wept,
The ruthlesse Queene gaue him, to dry his Cheekes,
A Napkin, steeped in the harmelesse blood
Of sweet young Rutland, by rough Clifford slaine:
720And after many scornes, many foule taunts,
They tooke his Head, and on the Gates of Yorke
They set the same, and there it doth remaine,
The saddest spectacle that ere I view'd.
Edward. Sweet Duke of Yorke, our Prop to leane vpon,
725Now thou art gone, wee haue no Staffe, no Stay.
Oh Clifford, boyst'rous Clifford, thou hast slaine
The flowre of Europe, for his Cheualrie,
And trecherously hast thou vanquisht him,
For hand to hand he would haue vanquisht thee.
730Now my Soules Pallace is become a Prison:
Ah, would she breake from hence, that this my body
Might