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  • 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    Not Peer Reviewed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)

    Enter sixe Citizens in their Shirts, bare foote, with
    2350halters about their necks.
    Enter King Edward, Queen Phillip, Derby, soldiers.
    Ed. No more Queene Phillip, pacifie your selfe,
    Copland, except he can excuse his fault,
    Shall finde displeasure written in our lookes,
    2355And now vnto this proud resisting towne,
    Souldiers assault, I will no longer stay,
    To be deluded by their false delaies,
    Put all to sword, and make the spoyle your owne.
    All: Mercy king Edward, mercie gratious Lord.
    2360Ki: Gontemptuous villaines, call ye now for truce?
    Mine eares are stopt against your bootelesse cryes,
    Sound drums allarum, draw threatning swords?
    All: Ah noble Prince, take pittie on this towne,
    And heare vs mightie king:
    2365We claime the promise that your highnes made,
    The two daies respit is not yet expirde,
    And we are come with willingnes to beare,
    What tortering death or punishment you please,
    So that the trembling multitude be saued,
    2370Ki: My promise, wel I do confesse as much;
    But I require the cheefest Citizens,
    And men of most account that should submit,
    You peraduenture are but seruile groomes,
    Or some fellonious robbers on the Sea,
    2375Whome apprehended law would execute,
    Albeit seuerity lay dead in vs,
    No no ye cannot ouerreach vs thus,
    Two: The Sun dread Lord that in the western fall,
    Beholds vs now low brought through miserie,
    2380Did in the Orient purple of the morne,
    Salute our comming forth when we were knowne
    Or may our portion be with damned fiends,
    Ki: If it be so, then let our couenant stand,
    We take possession of the towne in peace,
    2385But for your selues looke you for no remorse,
    But as imperiall iustice hath decreed,
    Your bodies shalbe dragd about these wals,
    And after feele the stroake of quartering steele,
    This is your dome, go souldiets see it done.
    2390Qu: Ah be more milde vnto these yeelding men,
    It is a glorious thing to stablish peace,
    And kings approch the nearest vnto God,
    By giuing life and safety vnto men,
    As thou intendest to be king of Fraunce,
    2395So let her people liue to call thee king,
    For what the sword cuts down or fire hath spoyld
    Is held in reputation none of ours.
    Ki: Although experience teach vs, this is true,
    That peacefull quietnes brings most delight,
    2400When most of all abuses are controld,
    Yet insomuch, it shalbe knowne that we,
    Aswell can master our affections,
    As conquer other by the dynt of sword,
    Phillip preuaile, we yeeld to thy request,
    2405These men shall liue to boast of clemencie,
    And tyrannie strike terror to thy selfe.
    Two: long liue your highnes, happy be your reigne
    Ki: Go get you hence, returne vnto the towne,
    And if this kindnes hath deserud your loue,
    2410Learne then to reuerence Edw. as your king. Ex.
    Now might we heare of our affaires abroad,
    We would till glomy Winter were ore spent,
    Dispose our men in garrison a while,
    But who comes heere?
    2415Enter Copland and King Dauid.
    De, Copland my Lord, and Dauid King of Scots:
    Ki: Is this the proud presumtious Esquire of the
    North,
    That would not yeeld his prisoner to my Queen,
    2420Cop: I am my liege a Northen Esquire indeed,
    But neither proud nor insolent I trust.
    Ki:What moude thee then to be so obstinate,
    To contradict our royall Queenes desire?
    Co.No wilfull disobedience mightie Lord,
    2425But my desert and publike law at armes.
    I tooke the king my selfe in single fight,
    and like a souldier would be loath to loose
    The least preheminence that I had won.
    And Copland straight vpon your highnes charge,
    2430Is come to Fraunce, and with a lowly minde,
    Doth vale the bonnet of his victory:
    Receiue dread Lorde the custome of my fraught,
    The wealthie tribute of my laboring hands,
    Which should long since haue been surrendred vp
    2435Had but your gratious selfe bin there in place,
    Q. But Copland thou didst scorne the kings com-(mand
    Neglecting our commission in his name.
    Cop. His name I reuerence, but his person more,
    His name shall keepe me in alleagaunce still,
    2440But to his person I will bend my knee.
    King. I praie thee Phillip let displeasure passe:
    This man doth please mee, and I like his words,
    For what is he that will attmpt great deeds,
    and loose the glory that ensues the same,
    2445all riuers haue recourse vnto the Sea,
    and Coplands faith relation to his king,
    Kneele therefore downe, now rise king Edwards (knight,
    and to maintayne thy state I freely giue,
    Fiue hundred marks a yeere to thee and thine.
    2450welcom lord Salisburie, what news from Brittaine
    Enter Salsbury.
    Sa: This mightie king, the Country we haue won,
    And Charles de Mounford regent of that place,
    Presents your highnes with this Coronet,
    2455Protesting true allegeaunce to your Grace.
    Ki: We thanke thee for thy seruice valient Earle
    Challenge our fauour for we owe it thee:
    Sa: But now my Lord, as this is ioyful newes,
    So must my voice be tragicall againe,
    2460and I must sing of dolefull accidents,
    Ki: What haue our men the ouerthrow at Poitiers,
    Or is our sonne beset with too much odds?
    Sa. He was my Lord, and as my worthltsse selfe,
    With fortie other seruicable knights,
    2465Vndersafe conduct of the Dolphins seale,
    Did trauaile that way, finding him distrest,
    A troupe of Launces met vs on the way,
    Surprisd and brought vs prisoners to the king,
    Who proud of this, and eager of reuenge,
    2470Commanded straight to cut of all our heads,
    And surely we had died but that the Duke,
    More full of honor then his angry syre,
    Procurd our quicke deliuerance from thence,
    But ere we went, salute your king, quothe hee,
    2475Bid him prouide a funerall for his sonne,
    To day our sword shall cut his thred of life,
    And sooner then he thinkes wele be with him:
    To quittance those displeasures he hath done,
    This said, we past, not daring to reply,
    2480Our harts were dead, our lookes diffusd and wan,
    Wandring at last we clymd vnto a hill,
    From whence although our griefe were much be-(fore
    Yet now to see the occasion with our eies,
    Did thrice so much increase our heauines,
    2485For there my Lord, oh there we did descry
    Downe in a vallie how both armies laie:
    The French had cast their trenches like a ring,
    And euery Barricados open front,
    Was thicke imbost with brasen ordynaunce.
    2490Heere stood a battaile of ten tstousand horse,
    There twise as many pikes in quadrant wise,
    Here Crosbowes and deadly wounding darts,
    And in the midst like to a slender poynt,
    Within the compasse of the horison,
    2495as twere a rising bubble in the sea,
    A Hasle wand a midst a wood of Pynes,
    Or as a beare fast chaind vnto a stake,
    Stood famous Edward still expecting when
    Those doggs of Fraunce would fasten on his flesh
    2500Anon the death procuring knell begins,
    Off goe the Cannons that with trembling noyse,
    Did shake the very Mountayne where they stood,
    Then sound the Trumpets clangor in the aire,
    The battailes ioyne, and when we could no more,
    2505Discerne the difference twixt the friend and fo,
    So intricate the darke confusion was,
    Away we turnd our watrie eies with sighs,
    as blacke as pouder fuming into smoke,
    And thus I feare, vnhappie haue I told,
    2510The most vntimely tale of Edwards fall.
    Qu: Ah me, is this my welcome into Fraunce:
    Is this the comfort that I lookt to haue,
    When I should meete with my belooued sonne:
    Sweete Ned, I would thy mother in the sea
    2515Had been preuented of this mortall griefe.
    Ki: Content thee Phillip, tis not teares will serue,
    To call him backe, if he be taken hence,
    Comfort thy selfe as I do gentle Queene,
    With hope of sharpe vnheard of dyre reuenge,
    2520He bids me to prouide his funerall.
    And so I will, but all the Peeres in Fraunce,
    Shall mourners be, and weepe out bloody teares,
    Vntill their emptie vaines be drie and sere
    The pillers of his hearse shall be his bones,
    2525The mould that couers him, their Citie ashes,
    His knell the groning cryes of dying men,
    And in the stead of tapers on his tombe,
    an hundred fiftie towers shall burning blaze,
    While we bewaile our valiant sonnes decease.
    2530After a flourish sounded within, enter an herald.
    He. Reioyce my Lord, ascend the imperial throne
    The mightie and redoubted prince of Wales,
    Great seruitor to bloudie Mars in armes,
    The French mans terror and his countries fame,
    2535Triumphant rideth like a Romane peere,
    and lowly at his stirop comes a foot
    King Iohn of France, together with his sonne,
    In captiue bonds, whose diadem he brings
    To crowne thee with, and to proclaime thee king
    2540Ki. Away with mourning Phillip, wipe thine eies
    Sound Trumpets, welcome in Plantaginet.
    Enter Prince Edward, king Iohn, Phillip, Aud-
    ley, Artoys.
    Ki: As things long lost when they are found again,
    2545So doth my sonne reioyce his fathers heart,
    For whom euen now my soule was much perplext
    Q. Be this a token to expresse my ioy, kisse him.
    For inward passions will not let me speake.
    Pr. My gracious father, here receiue the gift,
    2550This wreath of conquest, and reward of warre,
    Got with as mickle perill of our liues,
    as ere was thing of price before this daie,
    Install your highnes in your proper right,
    and heerewithall I render to your hands
    2555These prisoners, chiefe occasion of our strife.
    Kin: So Iohn of France, I see you keepe your word
    You promist to be sooner with our selfe
    Then we did thinke for, and tis so in deed,
    But had you done at first as now you do,
    2560How many ciuill townes had stoode vntoucht,
    That now are turnd to ragged heaps of stones?
    How many peoples liues mightst thou haue saud,
    that are vntimely sunke into their graues.
    Io: Edward, recount not things irreuocable,
    2565Tell me what ransome thou requirest to haue?
    Kin: Thy ransome Iohn, hereafter shall be known
    But first to England thou must crosse the seas,
    To see what intertainment it affords,
    How ere it fals, it cannot be so bad,
    2570as ours hath bin since we ariude in France.
    Ioh: Accursed man, of this I was fortolde,
    But did misconster what the prophet told.
    Pri: Now father this petition Edward makes,
    To thee whose grace hath bin his strongest shield
    2575That as thy pleasure chose me for the man,
    To be the instrument to shew thy power,
    So thou wilt grant that many princes more,
    Bred and brought vp within that little Isle,
    May still be famous for lyke victories:
    2580and for my part, the bloudie scars I beare,
    The wearie nights that I haue watcht in field,
    The dangerous conflicts I haue often had,
    The fearefull menaces were proffered me,
    The heate and cold, and what else might displease
    2585I wish were now redoubled twentie fold,
    So that hereafter ages when they reade
    The painfull traffike of my tender youth
    Might thereby be inflamd with such resolue,
    as not the territories of France alone,
    2590But likewise Spain, Turkie, and what countries els
    That iustly would prouoke faire Englands ire,
    Might at their presence tremble and retire.
    Kin: Here English Lordes we do proclaime a rest
    an intercession of our painfull armes,
    2595Sheath vp your swords, refresh your weary lims,
    Peruse your spoiles, and after we haue breathd
    a daie or two within this hauen towne,
    God willing then for England wele be shipt,
    Where in a happie houre I trust we shall
    2600Ariue three kings, two princes, and a queene.
    FINIS.