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Re-enter Prince HENRY. Lo, where he comes, -Come hither to me, Harry :Depart the chamber, leave us here alone.
[Exeunt CLARENCE, Prince HUMPHRBY,
Lords, &c. P. Hen. I never thought to hear you speak again. K. Hen. Thy wish was father, Harry, to that
thought: I stay too long by thee, I weary thee. Dost thou so hunger for my empty chair, That thou wilt needs invest thee with mine honours Before thy hour be ripe? O foolish youth! Thou seek'st the greatness that will overwhelm thee. Stay but a little; for my cloud of dignity Is held from falling with so weak a wind, That it will quickly drop: my day is dim. Thou hast stol'n that, which, after some few hours, Were thine without offence; and, at my death, Thou hast seal'd up my expectation: Thy life did manifest, thou lov'dst me not, And thou wilt have me die assured of it. Thou hid'st a thousand daggers in thy thoughts; Which thou hast whetted on thy stony heart, To stab at half an hour of my life. What! canst thou not forbear me half an hour? Then get thee gone; and dig my grave thyself; And bid the merry bells ring to thine ear, That thou art crowned, not that I am dead. Let all the tears that should bedew my hearse, Be drops of balm, to sanctify thy head: Only compound me with forgotten dust; Give that, which gave thee life, unto the worms. Pluck down my officers, break my decrees;
seald up my expectation:] Thou hast confirmed my
For now a time is come to mock at form,
your scum: Have you a ruffian, that will swear, drink, dance, Revel the night; rob, murder, and commit The oldest sins the newest kind of ways? Be happy, he will trouble you no more: England shall double gild his treble guilt: England shall give him office, honour, might: For the fifth Harry from curb'd licence plucks The muzzle of restraint, and the wild dog Shall flesh his tooth in every innocent. O my poor kingdom, sick with civil blows! When that my care could not withhold thy riots, What wilt thou do, when riot is thy care? O, thou wilt be a wilderness again, Peopled with wolves, thy old inhabitants ! P. Hen. O, pardon me, my liege! but for my tears,
[Kneeling The moist impediments unto my speech, I had forestall'd this dear and deep rebuke, Ere you with grief had spoke, and I had heard The course of it so far. There is your crown; And He that wears the crown immortally, Long guard it yours! If I affect it more, Than as your honour, and as your renown, Let me no more from this obedience rise, (Which my most true and inward-duteous spirit Teacheth,) this prostrate and exterior bending! Heaven witness with me, when I here came in, And found no course of breath within your majesty, How cold it struck my heart! If I do feign, 0, let me in my present wildness die; And never live to show the incredulous world
The noble change that I have purposed !
K. Hen. O my son!
- in med'cine potable :) There has long prevailed an opinion that a solution of gold has great medicinal virtues, and that the incorruptibility of gold might be conumunicated to the body impregnated with it.
To thee it shall descend with better quiet,
soil -] Is spot, dirt, turpitude, reproach.
all these bold fears,] Fear is here used in the active sense, for that which causes fear. . Changes the mode:] Mode is the form or state of things.
- for what in me was purchas’d,] Purchased, in this place, signifies acquired by unjust and indirect methods. Purchase, in Shakspeare, frequently means stolen goods, or goods dishonestly obtained.
successively.) By order of succession. Every usurper snatches a claim of hereditary right as soon as he can.
* To lead out many to the Holy Land;] The sense is: Of those who assisted my usurpation, some I have cut off, and many I intended to lead abroad. This journey to the Holy Land, of which
Lest rest, and lying still, might make them look
P. Hen. My gracious liege,
Lords, and Others. K. Hen. Look, look, here comes iny John of
Lancaster. P. John. Health, peace, and happiness, to my
royal father K. Hen. Thou bring'st me happiness, and peace,
My lord of Warwick!
the King very frequently revives the mention, had two motives, religion and policy. He durst not wear the ill-gotten crown without expiation, but in the act of expiation he contrives to make his wickedness successful. JOHNSON.
4 How I came, &c.] This is a true picture of a mind divided between heaven and earth. He prays for the prosperity of guilt while he deprecates its punishment. Johnson.