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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 Tragedie
    That neuer slept a quiet houre with thee,
    Now fils thy sleepe with preturbations,
    To morrow in the battaile thinke on me,
    3620And fall thy edgeles sword despaire and die.
    To Rich. Thou quiet soule, sleepe thou a quiet sleepe,
    Dreame of successe and happie victorie,
    Thy aduersaries wife doth praie for thee.
    3625Enter the Goast of Buckingham.
    The first was I that helpt thee to the crown,
    The last was I that felt thy tyrrannie,
    O in the battaile thinke on Buckingham,
    3630And die in terror of thy giltinesse,
    Dreame on, dreame on, of bloudie deeds and death,
    Fainting, despaire, desparing yeeld thy breath,
    To Rich. I died for hope ere I could lend thee aid,
    3635But cheare thy heart, and be thou not dismaid,
    God and good angels fight on Richmons side,
    And Richard fals in height of all his pride.
    Richard starteth vp out of a dreame.
    King Ri. Giue me another horse, bind vp my wounds,
    3640Haue mercie Iesu: soft, I did but dreame,
    O Coward conscience, how dost thou afflict me?
    The lights burne blew, it is now dead midnight,
    Cold fearefull drops stand on my trembling flesh,
    What do I feare? my selfe? theres none else by,
    3645Richard loues Richard, that is I and I,
    Is there a murtherer here? no. Yes I am,
    Then flie, what from my selfe? great reason whie?
    Least I reuenge. What my selfe vpon my selfe?
    Alacke I loue my selfe, wherefore? for anie good
    3650That I my selfe haue done vnto my selfe:
    O no, alas I rather hate my selfe,
    For hatefull deedes committed by my selfe,
    I am a villaine, yet I lie I am not,
    Foole of thy selfe speake well, foole do not flatter,
    3655My conscience hath a thousand seuerall tongues,
    And euerie tongue brings in a seueral tale,
    And euerie tale condemns me for a villaine,