Internet Shakespeare Editions

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


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 in the ground be closed vp in rest:
For neuer henceforth shall I ioy againe:
Neuer, oh neuer shall I see more ioy.
735Rich. I cannot weepe: for all my bodies moysture
Scarse serues to quench my Furnace-burning hart:
Nor can my tongue vnloade my hearts great burthen,
For selfe-same winde that I should speake withall,
Is kindling coales that fires all my brest,
740And burnes me vp with flames, that tears would quench.
To weepe, is to make lesse the depth of greefe:
Teares then for Babes; Blowes, and Reuenge for mee.
Richard, I beare thy name, Ile venge thy death,
Or dye renowned by attempting it.
745Ed. His name that valiant Duke hath left with thee:
His Dukedome, and his Chaire with me is left.
Rich. Nay, if thou be that Princely Eagles Bird,
Shew thy descent by gazing 'gainst the Sunne:
For Chaire and Dukedome, Throne and Kingdome say,
750Either that is thine, or else thou wer't not his.
March. Enter Warwicke, Marquesse Mountacute,
and their Army.
Warwick. How now faire Lords? What faire? What
newes abroad?
755 Rich. Great Lord of Warwicke, if we should tecompt
Our balefull newes, and at each words deliuerance
Stab Poniards in our flesh, till all were told,
The words would adde more anguish then the wounds.
O valiant Lord, the Duke of Yorke is slaine.
760Edw. O Warwicke, Warwicke, that Plantagenet
Which held thee deerely, as his Soules Redemption,
Is by the sterne Lord Clifford done to death.
War. Ten dayes ago, I drown'd these newes in teares.
And now to adde more measure to your woes,
765I come to tell you things sith then befalne.
After the bloody Fray at Wakefield fought,
Where your braue Father breath'd his latest gaspe,
Tydings, as swiftly as the Postes could runne,
Were brought me of your Losse, and his Depart.
770I then in London, keeper of the King,
Muster'd my Soldiers, gathered flockes of Friends,
Marcht toward S. Albons, to intercept the Queene,
Bearing the King in my behalfe along:
For by my Scouts, I was aduertised
775That she was comming with a full intent
To dash our late Decree in Parliament,
Touching King Henries Oath, and your Succession:
Short Tale to make, we at S. Albons met,
Our Battailes ioyn'd, and both sides fiercely fought:
780But whether 'twas the coldnesse of the King,
Who look'd full gently on his warlike Queene,
That robb'd my Soldiers of their heated Spleene.
Or whether 'twas report of her successe,
Or more then common feare of Cliffords Rigour,
785Who thunders to his Captiues, Blood and Death,
I cannot iudge: but to conclude with truth,
Their Weapons like to Lightning, came and went:
Our Souldiers like the Night-Owles lazie flight,
Or like a lazie Thresher with a Flaile,
790Fell gently downe, as if they strucke their Friends.
I cheer'd them vp with iustice of our Cause,
With promise of high pay, and great Rewards:
But all in vaine, they had no heart to fight,
And we (in them) no hope to win the day,
795So that we fled: the King vnto the Queene,
Lord George, your Brother, Norfolke, and my Selfe,
In haste, post haste, are come to ioyne with you:
For in the Marches heere we heard you were,
Making another Head, to fight againe.
800 Ed. Where is the Duke of Norfolke, gentle Warwick?
And when came George from Burgundy to England?
War. Some six miles off the Duke is with the Soldiers,
And for your Brother he was lately sent
From your kinde Aunt Dutchesse of Burgundie,
805With ayde of Souldiers to this needfull Warre.
Rich. 'Twas oddes belike, when valiant Warwick fled;
Oft haue I heard his praises in Pursuite,
But ne're till now, his Scandall of Retire.
War. Nor now my Scandall Richard, dost thou heare:
810For thou shalt know this strong right hand of mine,
Can plucke the Diadem from faint Henries head,
And wring the awefull Scepter from his Fist,
Were he as famous, and as bold in Warre,
As he is fam'd for Mildnesse, Peace, and Prayer.
815Rich. I know it well Lord Warwick, blame me not,
'Tis loue I beare thy glories make me speake:
But in this troublous time, what's to be done?
Shall we go throw away our Coates of Steele,
And wrap our bodies in blacke mourning Gownes,
820Numb'ring our Aue-Maries with our Beads?
Or shall we on the Helmets of our Foes
Tell our Deuotion with reuengefull Armes?
If for the last, say I, and to it Lords.
War. Why therefore Warwick came to seek you out,
825And therefore comes my Brother Mountague:
Attend me Lords, the proud insulting Queene,
With Clifford, and the haught Northumberland,
And of their Feather, many moe proud Birds,
Haue wrought the easie-melting King, like Wax.
830He swore consent to your Succession,
His Oath enrolled in the Parliament.
And now to London all the crew are gone,
To frustrate both his Oath, and what beside
May make against the house of Lancaster.
835Their power (I thinke) is thirty thousand strong:
Now, if the helpe of Norfolke, and my selfe,
With all the Friends that thou braue Earle of March,
Among'st the louing Welshmen can'st procure,
Will but amount to fiue and twenty thousand,
840Why Via, to London will we march,
And once againe, bestride our foaming Steeds,
And once againe cry Charge vpon our Foes,
But neuer once againe turne backe and flye.
Rich. I, now me thinks I heare great Warwick speak;
845Ne're may he liue to see a Sun-shine day,
That cries Retire, if Warwicke bid him stay.
Ed. Lord Warwicke, on thy shoulder will I leane,
And when thou failst (as God forbid the houre)
Must Edward fall, which perill heauen forefend.
850 War. No longer Earle of March, but Duke of Yorke:
The next degree, is Englands Royall Throne:
For King of England shalt thou be proclaim'd
In euery Burrough as we passe along,
And he that throwes not vp his cap for ioy,
855Shall for the Fault make forfeit of his head.
King Edward, valiant Richard Mountague:
Stay we no longer, dreaming of Renowne,
But sound the Trumpets, and about our Taske.
Rich. Then Clifford, were thy heart as hard as Steele,
860As thou hast shewne it flintie by thy deeds,
I come to pierce it, or to giue thee mine.
Ed. Then strike vp Drums, God and S. George for vs.
Enter a Messenger.
War. How now? what newes?
865 Mes. The Duke of Norfolke sends you word by me,
The Queene is comming with a puissant Hoast,
And craues your company, for speedy counsell.
War. Why then it sorts, braue Warriors, let's away.
Exeunt Omnes.