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  • Title: Richard the Third (Folio 1, 1623)
  • Editor: Adrian Kiernander

  • Copyright Adrian Kiernander. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Adrian Kiernander
    Peer Reviewed

    Richard the Third (Folio 1, 1623)

    The Life and Death of Richard the Third.
    345Sham'd their Aspects with store of childish drops:
    These eyes, which neuer shed remorsefull teare,
    No, when my Father Yorke, and Edward wept,
    To heare the pittious moane that Rutland made
    When black-fac'd Clifford shooke his sword at him.
    350Nor when thy warlike Father like a Childe,
    Told the sad storie of my Fathers death,
    And twenty times, made pause to sob and weepe:
    That all the standers by had wet their cheekes
    Like Trees bedash'd with raine. In that sad time,
    355My manly eyes did scorne an humble teare:
    And what these sorrowes could not thence exhale,
    Thy Beauty hath, and made them blinde with weeping.
    I neuer sued to Friend, nor Enemy:
    My Tongue could neuer learne sweet smoothing word.
    360But now thy Beauty is propos'd my Fee,
    My proud heart sues, and prompts my tongue to speake.
    She lookes scornfully at him.
    Teach not thy lip such Scorne; for it was made
    For kissing Lady, not for such contempt.
    365If thy reuengefull heart cannot forgiue,
    Loe heere I lend thee this sharpe-pointed Sword,
    Which if thou please to hide in this true brest,
    And let the Soule forth that adoreth thee,
    I lay it naked to the deadly stroke,
    370And humbly begge the death vpon my knee,
    He layes his brest open, she offers at with his sword.
    Nay do not pause: For I did kill King Henrie,
    But 'twas thy Beauty that prouoked me.
    Nay now dispatch: 'Twas I that stabb'd yong Edward,
    375But 'twas thy Heauenly face that set me on.
    She fals the Sword.
    Take vp the Sword againe, or take vp me.
    An. Arise Dissembler, though I wish thy death,
    I will not be thy Executioner.
    380Rich. Then bid me kill my selfe, and I will do it.
    An. I haue already.
    Rich. That was in thy rage:
    Speake it againe, and euen with the word,
    This hand, which for thy loue, did kill thy Loue,
    385Shall for thy loue, kill a farre truer Loue,
    To both their deaths shalt thou be accessary.
    An. I would I knew thy heart.
    Rich. 'Tis figur'd in my tongue.
    An. I feare me, both are false.
    390Rich. Then neuer Man was true.
    An. Well, well, put vp your Sword.
    Rich. Say then my Peace is made.
    An. That shalt thou know heereafter.
    Rich. But shall I liue in hope.
    395An. All men I hope liue so.
    Vouchsafe to weare this Ring.
    Rich. Looke how my Ring incompasseth thy Finger,
    Euen so thy Brest incloseth my poore heart:
    Weare both of them, for both of them are thine.
    400And if thy poore deuoted Seruant may
    But beg one fauour at thy gracious hand,
    Thou dost confirme his happinesse for euer.
    An. What is it?
    Rich. That it may please you leaue these sad designes,
    405To him that hath most cause to be a Mourner,
    And presently repayre to Crosbie House:
    Where (after I haue solemnly interr'd
    At Chertsey Monast'ry this Noble King,
    And wet his Graue with my Repentant Teares)
    410I will with all expedient duty see you,
    For diuers vnknowne Reasons, I beseech you,
    Grant me this Boon.
    An. With all my heart, and much it ioyes me too,
    To see you are become so penitent.
    415Tressel and Barkley, go along with me.
    Rich. Bid me farwell.
    An. 'Tis more then you deserue:
    But since you teach me how to flatter you,
    Imagine I haue saide farewell already.
    420Exit two with Anne.
    Gent. Towards Chertsey, Noble Lord?
    Rich. No: to White Friars, there attend my comming
    Exit Coarse
    Was euer woman in this humour woo'd?
    425Was euer woman in this humour wonne?
    Ile haue her, but I will not keepe her long.
    What? I that kill'd her Husband, and his Father,
    To take her in her hearts extreamest hate,
    With curses in her mouth, Teares in her eyes,
    430The bleeding witnesse of my hatred by,
    Hauing God, her Conscience, and these bars against me,
    And I, no Friends to backe my suite withall,
    But the plaine Diuell, and dissembling lookes?
    And yet to winne her? All the world to nothing.
    Hath she forgot alreadie that braue Prince,
    Edward, her Lord, whom I (some three monthes since)
    Stab'd in my angry mood, at Tewkesbury?
    A sweeter, and a louelier Gentleman,
    440Fram'd in the prodigallity of Nature:
    Yong, Valiant, Wise, and (no doubt) right Royal,
    The spacious World cannot againe affoord:
    And will she yet abase her eyes on me,
    That cropt the Golden prime of this sweet Prince,
    445And made her Widdow to a wofull Bed?
    On me, whose All not equals Edwards Moytie?
    On me, that halts, and am mishapen thus?
    My Dukedome, to a Beggerly denier!
    I do mistake my person all this while:
    450Vpon my life she findes (although I cannot)
    My selfe to be a maru'llous proper man.
    Ile be at Charges for a Looking-glasse,
    And entertaine a score or two of Taylors,
    To study fashions to adorne my body:
    455Since I am crept in fauour with my selfe,
    I will maintaine it with some little cost.
    But first Ile turne yon Fellow in his Graue,
    And then returne lamenting to my Loue.
    Shine out faire Sunne, till I haue bought a glasse,
    460That I may see my Shadow as I passe. exit.

    Scena Tertia.

    Enter the Queene Mother, Lord Riuers,
    and Lord Gray.

    Riu. Haue patience Madam, ther's no doubt his Maiesty
    465Will soone recouer his accustom'd health.
    Gray. In that you brooke it ill, it makes him worse,
    Therefore for Gods sake entertaine good comfort,
    And cheere his Grace with quicke and merry eyes
    Qu. If he were dead, what would betide on me?