Internet Shakespeare Editions

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  • 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)

    Scena Secunda.
    Drums: Flourish, and Colours.
    1360Enter Richard, Aumerle, Carlile, and Souldiers.
    Rich. Barkloughly Castle call you this at hand?
    Au. Yea, my Lord: how brooks your Grace the ayre,
    After your late tossing on the breaking Seas?
    Rich. Needs must I like it well: I weepe for ioy
    1365To stand vpon my Kingdome once againe.
    Deere Earth, I doe salute thee with my hand,
    Though Rebels wound thee with their Horses hoofes:
    As a long parted Mother with her Child,
    Playes fondly with her teares, and smiles in meeting;
    1370So weeping, smiling, greet I thee my Earth,
    And doe thee fauor with my Royall hands.
    Feed not thy Soueraignes Foe, my gentle Earth,
    Nor with thy Sweetes, comfort his rauenous sence:
    But let thy Spiders, that suck vp thy Venome,
    1375And heauie-gated Toades lye in their way,
    Doing annoyance to the trecherous feete,
    Which with vsurping steps doe trample thee.
    Yeeld stinging Nettles to mine Enemies;
    And when they from thy Bosome pluck a Flower,
    1380Guard it I prethee with a lurking Adder,
    Whose double tongue may with a mortall touch
    Throw death vpon thy Soueraignes Enemies.
    Mock not my sencelesse Coniuration, Lords;
    This Earth shall haue a feeling, and these Stones
    1385Proue armed Souldiers, ere her Natiue King
    Shall falter vnder foule Rebellious Armes.
    Car. Feare not my Lord, that Power that made you King
    Hath power to keepe you King, in spight of all.
    Aum. He meanes, my Lord, that we are too remisse,
    1390Whilest Bullingbrooke through our securitie,
    Growes strong and great, in substance and in friends.
    Rich. Discomfortable Cousin, knowest thou not,
    That when the searching Eye of Heauen is hid
    Behind the Globe, that lights the lower World,
    1395Then Theeues and Robbers raunge abroad vnseene,
    In Murthers and in Out-rage bloody here:
    But when from vnder this Terrestriall Ball
    He fires the prowd tops of the Easterne Pines,
    And darts his Lightning through eu'ry guiltie 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 Theefe, this Traytor Bullingbrooke,
    Who all this while hath reuell'd in the Night,
    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 from an anoynted King;
    The breath of worldly men cannot depose
    The Deputie elected by the Lord:
    For euery man that Bullingbrooke hath prest,
    To lift shrewd Steele against our Golden Crowne,
    1415Heauen for his Richard hath in heauenly pay
    A glorious Angell: then if Angels fight,
    Weake men must fall, for Heauen still guards the right.
    Enter Salisbury.
    Welcome my Lord, how farre off lyes your Power?
    1420Salisb. Nor neere, nor farther off, my gracious Lord,
    Then this weake arme; discomfort guides my tongue,
    And bids me speake of nothing but despaire:
    One day too late, I feare (my Noble Lord)
    Hath clouded all thy happie dayes on Earth:
    1425Oh call backe Yesterday, bid Time returne,
    And thou shalt haue twelue thousand fighting men:
    To day, to day, vnhappie day too late
    Orethrowes thy Ioyes, Friends, Fortune, and thy State;
    For all the Welchmen hearing thou wert dead,
    1430Are gone to Bullingbrooke, disperst, and fled.
    Aum. Comfort my Liege, why lookes your Grace so
    Rich. But now the blood of twentie thousand men
    Did triumph in my face, and they are fled,
    1435And till so much blood thither come againe,
    Haue I not reason to looke pale, and dead?
    All Soules that will be safe, flye from my side,
    For Time hath set a blot vpon my pride.
    Aum. Comfort my Liege, remember who you are.
    1440Rich. I had forgot my selfe. Am I not King?
    Awake thou sluggard Maiestie, thou sleepest:
    Is not the Kings Name fortie thousand Names?
    Arme, arme my Name: a punie subiect strikes
    At thy great glory. Looke not to the ground,
    1445Ye Fauorites of a King: are wee not high?
    High be our thoughts: I know my Vnckle Yorke
    Hath Power enough to serue our turne.
    But who comes here? Enter Scroope.
    Scroope. More health and happinesse betide my Liege,
    1450Then can my care-tun'd tongue deliuer him.
    Rich. Mine eare is open, and my heart prepar'd:
    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 wee?
    Greater he shall not be: If hee serue God,
    Wee'l serue him too, and be his Fellow so.
    Reuolt our Subiects? That we cannot mend,
    They breake their Faith to God, as well as vs:
    1460Cry Woe, Destruction, Ruine, Losse, Decay,
    The worst is Death, and Death will haue his day.
    Scroope. Glad am I, that your Highnesse is so arm'd
    To beare the tidings of Calamitie.
    Like an vnseasonable stormie day,
    1465Which make the Siluer Riuers drowne their Shores,
    As if the World were all dissolu'd to teares:
    So high, aboue his Limits, swells the Rage
    Of Bullingbrooke, couering your fearefull Land
    With hard bright Steele, and hearts harder then Steele:
    1470White Beares haue arm'd their thin and hairelesse Scalps
    Against thy Maiestie, and Boyes with Womens Voyces,
    Striue to speake bigge, and clap their female ioints
    In stiffe vnwieldie Armes: against thy Crowne
    Thy very Beads-men learne to bend their Bowes
    1475Of double fatall Eugh: against thy State
    Yea Distaffe-Women manage rustie Bills:
    Against thy Seat both young and old rebell,
    And all goes worse then I haue power to tell.
    Rich. Too well, too well thou tell'st a Tale so ill.
    1480Where is the Earle of Wiltshire? where is Bagot?
    What is become of Bushie? where is Greene?
    The life and death of Richard the second. 35
    That they haue let the dangerous Enemie
    Measure our Confines with such peacefull steps?
    If we preuaile, their heads shall pay for it.
    1485I warrant they haue made peace with Bullingbrooke.
    Scroope. Peace haue they made with him indeede (my
    Rich. Oh Villains, Vipers, damn'd without redemption,
    Dogges, easily woon to fawne on any man,
    1490Snakes in my heart blood warm'd, that sting my heart,
    Three Iudasses, each one thrice worse then Iudas,
    Would they make peace? terrible Hell make warre
    Vpon their spotted Soules for this Offence.
    Scroope. Sweet Loue (I see) changing his propertie,
    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 Deaths destroying hand,
    And lye full low, grau'd in the hollow ground.
    1500Aum. Is Bushie, Greene, and the Earle of Wiltshire
    Scroope. Yea, all of them at Bristow lost their heads.
    Aum. Where is the Duke my Father with his Power?
    Rich. No matter where; of comfort no man speake:
    1505Let's talke of Graues, of Wormes, and Epitaphs,
    Make Dust our Paper, and with Raynie eyes
    Write Sorrow on the Bosome of the Earth.
    Let's chuse Executors, and talke of Wills:
    And yet not so; for what can we bequeath,
    1510Saue our deposed bodies to the ground?
    Our Lands, our Liues, and all are Bullingbrookes,
    And nothing can we call our owne, but Death,
    And that small Modell of the barren Earth,
    Which serues as Paste, and Couer to our Bones:
    1515For Heauens sake let vs sit vpon the ground,
    And tell sad stories of the death of Kings:
    How some haue been depos'd, some slaine in warre,
    Some haunted by the Ghosts they haue depos'd,
    Some poyson'd by their Wiues, some sleeping kill'd,
    1520All murther'd. For within the hollow Crowne
    That rounds the mortall Temples of a King,
    Keepes Death his Court, and there the Antique sits
    Scoffing his State, and grinning at his Pompe,
    Allowing him a breath, a little Scene,
    1525To Monarchize, be fear'd, and kill with lookes,
    Infusing him with selfe and vaine conceit,
    As if this Flesh, which walls about our Life,
    Were Brasse impregnable: and humor'd thus,
    Comes at the last, and with a little Pinne
    1530Bores through his Castle Walls, and farwell King.
    Couer your heads, and mock not flesh and blood
    With solemne Reuerence: throw away Respect,
    Tradition, Forme, and Ceremonious dutie,
    For you haue but mistooke me all this while:
    1535I liue with Bread like you, feele Want,
    Taste Griefe, need Friends: subiected thus,
    How can you say to me, I am a King?
    Carl. My Lord, wise men ne're waile their present woes,
    But presently preuent the wayes to waile:
    1540To feare the Foe, since feare oppresseth strength,
    Giues in your weakenesse, strength vnto your Foe;
    Feare, and be slaine, no worse can come to fight,
    And fight and die, is death destroying death,
    Where fearing, dying, payes death seruile breath.
    1545Aum. My Father hath a Power, enquire of him,
    And learne to make a Body of a Limbe.
    Rich. Thou chid'st me well: proud Bullingbrooke I come
    To change Blowes with thee, for our day of Doome:
    This ague fit of feare is ouer-blowne,
    1550An easie taske it is to winne our owne.
    Say Scroope, where lyes our Vnckle with his Power?
    Speake sweetly man, although thy lookes be sowre.
    Scroope. Men iudge by the complexion of the Skie
    The state and inclination of the day;
    1555So may you by my dull and heauie Eye:
    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 Vnckle Yorke is ioyn'd with Bullingbrooke,
    1560And all your Northerne Castles yeelded vp,
    And all your Southerne Gentlemen in Armes
    Vpon his Faction.
    Rich. Thou hast said enough.
    Beshrew thee Cousin, which didst lead me forth
    1565Of that sweet way I was in, to despaire:
    What say you now? What comfort haue we now?
    By Heauen Ile hate him euerlastingly,
    That bids me be of comfort any more.
    Goe to Flint Castle, there Ile pine away,
    1570A King, Woes slaue, shall Kingly Woe obey:
    That Power I haue, discharge, and let 'em goe
    To eare the Land, that hath some hope to grow,
    For I haue none. Let no man speake againe
    To alter this, for counsaile is but vaine.
    1575Aum. My Liege, one word.
    Rich. He does me double wrong,
    That wounds me with the flatteries of his tongue.
    Discharge my followers: let them hence away,
    From Richards Night, to Bullingbrookes faire Day.
    1580 Exeunt.