Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: Richard II (Folio 1, 1623)
  • Editor: Catherine Lisak
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-436-3

    Copyright Internet Shakespeare Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-proift purposes; for all other uses contact the Coordinating Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Catherine Lisak
    Peer Reviewed

    Richard II (Folio 1, 1623)

    The Life and Death of Richard the Second.
    Bul. I pardon him, as heauen shall pardon mee.
    2635Dut. O happy vantage of a kneeling knee:
    Yet am I sicke for feare: Speake it againe,
    Twice saying Pardon, doth not pardon twaine,
    But makes one pardon strong.
    Bul. I pardon him with all my hart.
    2640Dut. A God on earth thou art.
    Bul. But for our trusty brother-in-Law, the Abbot,
    With all the rest of that consorted crew,
    Destruction straight shall dogge them at the heeles:
    Good Vnckle helpe to order seuerall powres
    2645To Oxford, or where ere these Traitors are:
    They shall not liue within this world I sweare,
    But I will haue them, if I once know where.
    Vnckle farewell, and Cosin adieu:
    Your mother well hath praid, and proue you true.
    2650Dut. Come my old son, I pray heauen make thee new.
    Enter Exton and Seruants.
    Ext. Didst thou not marke the King what words hee
    2655Haue I no friend will rid me of this liuing feare:
    Was it not so?
    Ser. Those were his very words.
    Ex. Haue I no Friend? (quoth he:) he spake it twice,
    And vrg'd it twice together, did he not?
    2660Ser. He did.
    Ex. And speaking it, he wistly look'd on me,
    As who should say, I would thou wer't the man
    That would diuorce this terror from my heart,
    Meaning the King at Pomfret: Come, let's goe;
    2665I am the Kings Friend, and will rid his Foe.

    Scæna Quarta.

    Enter Richard.
    Rich. I haue bin studying, how to compare
    This Prison where I liue, vnto the World:
    2670And for because the world is populous,
    And heere is not a Creature, but my selfe,
    I cannot do it: yet Ile hammer't out.
    My Braine, Ile proue the Female to my Soule,
    My Soule, the Father: and these two beget
    2675A generation of still breeding Thoughts;
    And these same Thoughts, people this Little World
    In humors, like the people of this world,
    For no thought is contented. The better sort,
    As thoughts of things Diuine, are intermixt
    2680With scruples, and do set the Faith it selfe
    Against the Faith: as thus: Come litle ones: & then again,
    It is as hard to come, as for a Camell
    To thred the posterne of a Needles eye.
    Thoughts tending to Ambition, they do plot
    2685Vnlikely wonders; how these vaine weake nailes
    May teare a passage through the Flinty ribbes
    Of this hard world, my ragged prison walles:
    And for they cannot, dye in their owne pride.
    Thoughts tending to Content, flatter themselues,
    2690That they are not the first of Fortunes slaues,
    Nor shall not be the last. Like silly Beggars,
    Who sitting in the Stockes, refuge their shame
    That many haue, and others must sit there;
    And in this Thought, they finde a kind of ease,

    2695Bearing their owne misfortune on the backe
    Of such as haue before indur'd the like.
    Thus play I in one Prison, many people,
    And none contented. Sometimes am I King;
    Then Treason makes me wish my selfe a Beggar,
    2700And so I am. Then crushing penurie,
    Perswades me, I was better when a King:
    Then am I king'd againe: and by and by,
    Thinke that I am vn-king'd by Bullingbrooke,
    And straight am nothing. But what ere I am,
    2705Nor I, nor any man, that but man is,
    With nothing shall be pleas'd, till he be eas'd
    With being nothing. Musicke do I heare?
    Ha, ha? keepe time: How sowre sweet Musicke is,
    When Time is broke, and no Proportion kept?
    2710So is it in the Musicke of mens liues:
    And heere haue I the daintinesse of eare,
    To heare time broke in a disorder'd string:
    But for the Concord of my State and Time,
    Had not an eare to heare my true Time broke.
    2715I wasted Time, and now doth Time waste me:
    For now hath Time made me his numbring clocke;
    My Thoughts, are minutes; and with Sighes they iarre,
    Their watches on vnto mine eyes, the outward Watch,
    Whereto my finger, like a Dialls point,
    2720Is pointing still, in cleansing them from teares.
    Now sir, the sound that tels what houre it is,
    Are clamorous groanes, that strike vpon my heart,
    Which is the bell: so Sighes, and Teares, and Grones,
    Shew Minutes, Houres, and Times: but my Time
    2725Runs poasting on, in Bullingbrookes proud ioy,
    While I stand fooling heere, his iacke o'th' Clocke.
    This Musicke mads me, let it sound no more,
    For though it haue holpe madmen to their wits,
    In me it seemes, it will make wise-men mad:
    2730Yet blessing on his heart that giues it me;
    For 'tis a signe of loue, and loue to Richard,
    Is a strange Brooch, in this all-hating world.
    Enter Groome.
    Groo. Haile Royall Prince.
    2735Rich. Thankes Noble Peere,
    The cheapest of vs, is ten groates too deere.
    What art thou? And how com'st thou hither?
    Where no man euer comes, but that sad dogge
    That brings me food, to make misfortune liue?
    2740Groo. I was a poore Groome of thy Stable (King)
    When thou wer't King: who trauelling towards Yorke,
    With much adoo, at length haue gotten leaue
    To looke vpon my (sometimes Royall) masters face.
    O how it yern'd my heart, when I beheld
    2745In London streets, that Coronation day,
    When Bullingbrooke rode on Roane Barbary,
    That horse, that thou so often hast bestrid,
    That horse, that I so carefully haue drest.
    Rich. Rode he on Barbary? Tell me gentle Friend,
    2750How went he vnder him?
    Groo. So proudly, as if he had disdain'd the ground.
    Rich. So proud, that Bullingbrooke was on his backe;
    That Iade hath eate bread from my Royall hand.
    This hand hath made him proud with clapping him.
    2755Would he not stumble? Would he not fall downe
    (Since Pride must haue a fall) and breake the necke
    Of that proud man, that did vsurpe his backe?
    Forgiuenesse horse: Why do I raile on thee,
    Since thou created to be aw'd by man
    2760Was't borne to beare? I was not made a horse,