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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
    Nor. A good direction warlike soueraigne, he sheweth him a paper.
    This found I on my tent this morning.
    Iocky of Norfolke be not so bould,
    3775 For Dickon thy master is bought and sould.
    King A thing deuised by the enemie.
    Go gentlemen euery man vnto his charge,
    Let not our babling dreames affright our soules:
    Conscience is but a word that cowards vse,
    3780Deuisd at first to keepe the strong in awe,
    Our strong armes be our conscience swords, our law.
    March on, ioine brauelie, let vs to it pell mell,
    If not to heauen then hand in hand to hell.
    3783.1His Oration to his army.
    What shal I saie more then I haue inferd?
    3785Remember whom you are to cope withall,
    A sort of vagabonds, rascols and runawaies,
    A scum of Brittains and base lacky pesants,
    Whom their orecloied country vomits forth,
    To desperate aduentures and assurd destruction,
    3790You sleeping safe they bring to you vnrest,
    You hauing lands and blest with beauteous wifes,
    They would restraine the one, distaine the other,
    And who doth lead them but a paltrey fellow,?
    Long kept in Brittaine at our mothers cost,
    3795A milkesopt, one that neuer in his life
    Felt so much colde as ouer shooes in snow:
    Lets whip these stragglers ore the seas againe,
    Lash hence these ouerweening rags of France,
    These famisht beggers wearie of their liues,
    3800Who but for dreaming on this fond exploit,
    For want of means poore rats had hangd themselues,
    If we be conquered, let men conquer vs,
    And not these bastard Brittains whom our fathers
    Haue in their own land beaten bobd and thumpt,
    3805And in record left them the heires of shame.
    Shall these enioy our lands, lie with our wiues?
    Rauish our daughters, harke I heare their drum,
    Fight gentlemen of England, fight bold yeomen,