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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
    To win your daughter.
    3070Qu. There is no other waie
    Vnlesse thou couldst put on some other shape,
    And not be Richard that hath done all this.
    King Infer faire Englands peace by this alliance.
    Qu. Which she shall purchase with still lasting war.
    3130King Saie that the king which may command intreats.
    Qu. That at her hands which the kings king forbids.
    King Saie she shalbe a high and mightie Queene.
    Qu. To waile the title as her mother doth.
    King Saie I wil loue her euerlastinglie.
    3135Qu. But how long shall that title euer last.
    King Sweetlie inforce vnto her faire lyues end.
    Qu. But how long farely shall her sweet life last?
    King So long as heauen and nature lengthens it.
    Qu. So long as hell and Richard likes of it.
    3140King Saie I her soueraign am her subiect loue.
    Qu. But she your subiect loaths such soueraintie.
    King Be eloquent in my behalfe to her.
    Qu. An honest tale speeds best being plainlie told.
    King Then in plaine termes tell her my louing tale.
    3145Qu. Plaine and not honest is to harsh a stile.
    King Madame your reasons are too shallow & too quicke
    Qu. O no my reasons are to deepe and dead.
    Too deepe and dead poore infants in their graue.
    3150King Harpe not one that string Madam that is past.
    Qu. Harpe on it still shall I till hartstrings breake.
    King Now by my George, my Garter and my crown.
    Qu. Prophand, dishonerd, and the third vsurped.
    King I sweare by nothing.
    Qu. By nothing, for this is no oath.
    3155The George prophand hath lost his holie honor,
    The Garter blemisht pawnd his knightlie vertue,
    The crown vsurpt disgrac't his kinglie dignitie,
    If something thou wilt sweare to be beleeude,
    Sweare then by something that thou hast not wrongd.
    King Now by the world.
    Qu. Tis ful of thy foule wrongs.
    King. My