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  • Title: Richard the Third (Quarto 1, 1597)
  • Editor: Adrian Kiernander

  • 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: Adrian Kiernander
    Peer Reviewed

    Richard the Third (Quarto 1, 1597)

    The Tragedy
    2310When hollie and deuout religious men,
    Are at their beads, tis hard to draw them thence,
    So sweet is zealous contemplation.
    Enter Rich. with two bishops a loste.
    Maior. See where he stands between two clergie men.
    Buck. Two props of vertue for a christian Prince,
    To staie him from the fall of vanitie,
    2320Famous Plantaganet, most gracious prince,
    Lend fauorable eares to our request,
    And pardon vs the interruption
    Of thy deuotion and right Christian zeale.
    Glo. My Lord, there needs no such apologie,
    2325I rather do beseech you pardon me,
    Who earnest in the seruice of my God,
    Neglect the visitation of my friends,
    But leauing this, what is your graces pleasure?
    Buck. Euen that I hope which pleaseth God aboue,
    2330And all good men of this vngouerned Ile.
    Glo. I do suspect I haue done some offence,
    That seemes disgracious in the Citties eies,
    And that you come to reprehend my ignorance.
    Buck. You haue my Lord, would it please your grace
    At our entreaties to amend that fault.
    Glo. Else wherefore breath I in a Christian land?
    Buck. Then know it is your fault that you resigne
    The supreame seat, the throne maiesticall,
    2340The sceptred office of your auncestors,
    The lineall glorie of your roiall house,
    To the corruption of a blemisht stocke:
    Whilst in the mildnesse of your sleepie thoughts,
    2345Which here we waken to our countries good,
    This noble Ile doth want her proper limbes,
    Her face defac't with scars of infamie,
    And almost shouldred in the swallowing gulph,
    2350Of blind forgetfulnesse and darke obliuion,
    Which to recure we hartily solicit,
    Your gratious selfe to take on you the soueraingtie thereof,
    Not as Protector steward substitute,