Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Catherine Lisak
Peer Reviewed

Richard II (Quarto 1, 1597)


1360
Enter the King Aumerle, Carleil, &c.
King Barkloughly castle call they this at hand?
Aum. Yea my Lord, How brookes your Grace the ayre
After your late tossing on the breaking seas?
King Needes must I like it well, I weepe for ioy,
1365To stand vpon my kingdome once againe:
Deere earth I do salute thee with my hand,
Though rebels wound thee with their horses hoofes:
As a long parted mother with her childe
Playes fondly with her teares and smiles in meeting;
1370So weeping, smiling greete I thee my earth,
And do thee fauours with my royall hands;
Feede not thy Soueraignes foe, my gentle earth,
Nor with thy sweetes comfort his rauenous sence,
But let thy Spiders that sucke vp thy venome,
1375And heauy-gated toades lie in theyr way,
Doing annoyance to the treacherous feete,
Which with vsurping steps do trample thee,
Yeelde stinging nettles to mine enemies:
And when they from thy bosome plucke a flower,
1380Guard it I pray thee with a lurking Adder,
Whose double tongue may wyth a mortall touch,
Throwe death vpon thy soueraignes enemies,
Mocke not my senceles coniuration Lords,
This earth shall haue a feeling, and these stones,
1385Proue armed souldiers ere her natiue King,
Shall faulter vnder foule rebellions armes.
Carl. Feare not my Lord, that power that made you king,
Hath power to keepe you king in spight of all,
1388.1The meanes that heauens yeeld must be imbrac't
And not neglected. Else heauen would,
And we will not, heauens offer, we refuse,
The profered meanes of succors and redresse.
Aum. He meanes my Lo: that we are too remisse,
1390Whilst Bullingbrooke through our security,
Growes strong and great in substance and in power.
King Discomfortable Coosen knowst thou not,
That when the searching eie of heauen is hid,
Behinde the globe that lights the lower world,
1395Then theeues and robbers range abroad vnseene,
In murthers and in outrage bouldy here,
But when from vnder this terrestriall ball,
He fires the proud tops of the easterne pines,
And dartes his light through euery guilty hole,
1400Then murthers, treasons and detested sinnes,
The cloake of night being pluckt from off their backs,
Stand bare and naked trembling at themselues?
So when this thiefe, this traitor Bullingbrooke,
Who all this while hath reueld in the night,
1404.1VVhilst we were wandring with the Antipodes,
1405Shall see vs rising in our throne the east,
His treasons will sit blushing in his face,
Not able to endure the sight of day,
But selfe affrighted tremble at his sinne,
Not all the water in the rough rude sea,
1410Can wash the balme offfrom an annointed King,
The breath of worldly men cannot depose,
The deputy elected by the Lord,
For euery man that Bullingbrooke hath prest,
To lifte shrewd steele against our golden crowne,
1415God for his Ric: hath in heauenly pay,
A glorious Angell; then if Angels fight,
Weake men must fall, for heauen still gardes the right.
Enter Salisb.
King Welcome my Lo:how far off lies your power?
1420Salis. Nor neare nor farther off my gratious Lo:
Than this weake arme; discomfort guides my tongue,
And bids me speake of nothing but Despaire,
One day too late I feare me noble Lo:
Hath clouded all thy happy daies on earth:
1425O call backe yesterday, bid Time returne,
And thou shalt haue twelue thousand fighting men,
To day to day vnhappie daie too late,
Ouerthrowes thy ioies friends, fortune and thy state,
For all the Welshmen hearing thou wert dead,
1430Are gone to Bullingbrooke disperst and fled.
Aum. Comfort my liege, why lookes your grace so pale.
King But now the bloud of 20000. men,
Did triumph in my face, and they are fled:
1435And till so much bloud thither come againe,
Haue I not reason to looke pale and dead?
All soules that wilbe safe, flie from my side,
For time hath set a blot vpon my pride.
Aum. Comfort my liege remember who you are.
1440King I had forgot my selfe, am I not King?
Awake thou coward Maiesty thou sleepest,
Is not the Kings name twenty thousand names?
Arme arme, my name a puny subiect strikes,
At thy great glorie, looke not to the ground,
1445Ye fauourites of a King, are we not high?
High be our thoughts, I know my Vnckle Yorke,
Hath power enough to serue our turne: but who comes here?
Enter Scroope.
Scro. More health and happines betide my liege,
1450Then can my care tunde tongue deliuer him.
King Mine eare is open, and my hart prepard,
The worst is worldly losse thou canst vnfold,
Say, is my kingdome lost? why twas my care,
And what losse is it to be rid of care?
1455Striues Bullingbrooke to be as great as we,
Greater he shall not be, if he serue God,
Weele serue him to, and be his fellow so:
Reuolt our subiects, that we cannot mende,
They breake their faith to God as well as vs:
1460Crie woe, destruction, ruine, and decay,
The worst is death, and death will haue his day.
Scro. Glad am I, that your highnes is so armde,
To beare the tidings of calamity,
Like an vnseasonable stormie day,
1465Which makes the siluer riuers drowne their shores,
As if the world were all dissolude to teares:
So high aboue his limits swels the rage
Of Bullingbrooke couering your fearefull land,
With hard bright steele, and harts harder then steele,
1470White beards haue armd their thin and haireles scalpes
Against thy maiesty: boies with womens voices,
Striue to speake big and clap their femal ioints,
In stiffe vnweildy armes against thy crowne,
Thy very beadsmen learne to bend their bowes,
1475Of double fatall ewe against thy state.
Yea distaffe women mannage rustie bils
Against thy seate, both young and old rebell,
And all goes worse then I haue power to tell.
King Too well too well thou telst a tale so ill,
1480Where is the Earle of Wiltshire? where is Bagot?
What is become of Bushie? where is Greene?
That they haue let the dangerous enemy,
Measure our confines with such peacefull steps,
If we preuaile, their heads shall pay for it:
1485I warrant they haue made peace with Bulling.
Scro. Peace haue they made with him indeed my Lord.
King Oh villaines, vipers, damnd without redemption,
Dogs easily woon to fawne on any man.
1490Snakes in my hart bloud warmd, that sting my hart,
Three Iudasses, each one thrise worse then Iudas,
Would they make peace? terrible hel,
Make war vpon their spotted soules for this.
Scro. Sweet loue I see changing his property,
1495Turnes to the sowrest and most deadly hate,
Againe, vncurse their soules, their peace is made
With heads and not with hands, those whom you curse
Haue felt the worst of deathes destroying wound,
And lie full low grau'd in the hollow ground.
1500Aum. Is Bushie, Greene, and the Earle of Wiltshire dead.
Scro. I all of them at Bristow lost their heads.
Aum. Where is the Duke my father with his power?
King No matter where, of comfort no man speake:
1505Lets talke of graues, of wormes, and Epitaphs,
Make dust our paper, and with rainy eies,
Write sorrow on the bosome of the earth.
Lets choose executors and talke of wils:
And yet not so, for what can we bequeath,
1510Saue our deposed bodies to the ground?
Our landes, our liues, and all are Bullingbrookes.
And nothing can we call our owne, but death:
And that small modle of the barren earth,
Which serues as paste, and couer to our bones,
1515For Gods sake let vs sit vpon the ground,
And tell sad stories of the death of Kings,
How some haue beene deposd, some slaine in warre,
Some haunted by the ghosts they haue deposed,
Some poisoned by their wiues, some sleeping kild;
1520All murthered, for within the hollow crowne
That roundes the mortall temples of a king,
Keepes death his court, and there the antique sits,
Scofing his state and grinning at his pompe,
Allowing him a breath, a litle sceane,
1525To monarchise be feard, and kil with lookes,
Infusing him with selfe and vaine conceit,
As if this flesh which wals about our life,
Were brasse impregnable: and humord thus,
Comes at the last, and with a little pin
1530Boares thorough his Castle wall, and farewell King;
Couer your heades, and mocke not flesh and bloud,
With solemne reuerence, throw away respect,
Tradition, forme, and ceremonious duetie,
For you haue but mistooke me al this while:
1535I liue with bread like you, feele want,
Taste griefe, neede friends, subiected thus,
How can you say to me, I am a King?
Carleil My lord, wisemen nere sit and waile theyr woes,
But presently preuent the wayes to waile,
1540To feare the foe, since feare oppresseth strength,
Giues in your weakenes strength vnto your foe,
1541.1And so your follies fight against your selfe:
Feare and be slaine, no worse can come to fight,
And fight and die, is death destroying death,
Where fearing dying, paies death seruile breath.
1545Aum. My father hath a power, inquire of him,
And learne to make a body of a limme.
King Thou chidst me well, prowd Bullingbrooke, I come
To change blowes with thee for our day of doome:
This agew fit of feare is ouerblowne,
1550And easie taske it is to winne our owne.
Say Scroope, where lies our vncle with his power?
Speake sweetely manalthough thy lookes be sower.
Scroope Men iudge by the complexion of the skie,
The state and inclination of the day;
1555So may you by my dull and heauy eie:
My tongue hath but a heauier tale to say,
I play the torturer by small and small
To lengthen out the worst that must be spoken:
Your vncle Yorke is ioynd with Bullingbrooke,
1560And all your Northerne castles yeelded vp,
And all your Southerne Gentlemen in armes
Vpon his partie.
King Thou hast said enough:
Beshrew thee cousin which didst leade me foorth
1565Ofthat sweete way I was in to dispaire.
What say you now? what comfort haue we now?
By heauen Ile hate him euerlastingly,
That bids me be of comfort any more.
Go to Flint Castle, there Ile pine away,
1570A King woes slaue shall kingly woe obey:
That power I haue, discharge, and let them goe
To eare the land that hath some hope to grow,
For I haue none, let no man speake againe,
To alter this, for counsell is but vaine.
1575Aum. My Liege, one word.
King He does me double wrong,
That wounds me with the flatteries of his tong.
Discharge my followers, let them hence away,
From Richards night, to Bullingbrookes faire day.