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About this text

  • Title: Edward III (Quarto 1, 1596)
  • Editor: Sonia Massai

  • Copyright Sonia Massai. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Sonia Massai
    Not Peer Reviewed

    Edward III (Quarto 1, 1596)

    Edward the third.
    And now he sayes the tyme will shortly come,
    When as a Lyon rowsed in the west,
    Shall carie hence the fluerdeluce of France,
    1285These I can tell yee and such like surmises,
    Strike many french men cold vnto the heart:
    Enter a French man.
    Flie cuntry men and cytizens of France,
    Sweete flowring peace the roote of happie life,
    1290Is quite abandoned and expulst the lande,
    In sted of whome ransackt constraining warre,
    Syts like to Rauens vppon your houses topps,
    Slaughter and mischiefe walke within your streets.
    And vnrestrained make hauock as they passe,
    1295The forme whereof euen now my selfe beheld,
    Vpon this faire mountaine whence I came,
    For so far of as I directed mine eies,
    I might perceaue fiue Cities all on fire,
    Corne fieldes and vineyards burning like an ouen,
    1300And as the leaking vapour in the wind,
    I tourned but a side I like wise might disserne.
    The poore inhabitants escapt the flame,
    Fall numberles vpon the souldiers pikes,
    Three waies these dredfull ministers of wrath,
    1305Do tread the measuers of their tragicke march,
    Vpon the right hand comes the conquering King,
    Vpon the lefte is hot vnbridled sonne,
    And in the midst our nations glittering hoast,
    All which though distant yet conspire in one,
    1310To leaue a desolation where they come,
    Flie therefore Citizens if you be wise,
    Seeke out som habitation further of,
    Here if you staie your wiues will be abused,
    Your treasure sharde before your weeping eies,
    1315Shelter you your selues for now the storme doth rise,