Imatges de pÓgina
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Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not


And hold their manhoods cheap, while any speaks, That fought with us upon St. Crispian's day. SHAKESPEARE.


Henry VI. Warwick, and Cardinal

K. Henry. How fares my lord? Speak, Beau

fort, to thy sovereign.

Car. If thou be'st Death, I'll give thee England's

Enough to purchase such another island,
So thou wilt let me live and feel no pain.

K. Henry. Ah, what a sign it is of evil life,
Where death's approach is seen so terrible!
War. Beaufort, it is thy sovereign speaks to




Car. Bring me unto my trial when Dy'd he not in his bed? Where should he die? Can I make men live whether they will or no? Oh, torture me no more! I will confessAlive again? Then show me where he is : I'll give a thousand pound to look upon himHe hath no eyes, the dust hath blinded them : Comb down his hair: look! look! it stands upright, Like lime twigs set to catch my winged soul. Give me some drink; and bid the apothecary Bring the strong poison that I bought of him. K. Henry. O thou eternal Mover of the heav'ns, Look with a gentle eye upon this wretch! Oh, beat away the busy meddling fiend That lays strong siege unto this wretch's soul, And from his bosom purge this black despair. —Peace to his soul, if God's good pleasure be! Lord Cardinal, if thou think'st on Heaven's bliss, Hold up thine hand, make signal of thy hope. He dies, and makes no sign! Ŏ God, forgive him.

War. So bad a death argues a monstrous life. K. Henry. Forbear to judge, for we are sinners


Close up his eyes, and draw the curtain close,

And let us all to meditation.



Wolsey and Cromwell.

Wol. FAREWEL, a long farewel to all my great


This is the state of man: To-day he puts forth
The tender leaves of hope; to-morrow blossoms,
And bears his blushing honours thick upon him;
The third day comes a frost, a killing frost,
And when he thinks, good easy man, full surely
His greatness is a-ripening, nips his shoot;
And then he falls, as I do. I have ventur'd,
Like little wanton boys, that swim on bladders,
These many summers in a sea of glory;
But far beyond my depth; my high-blown pride
At length broke under me; and now has left me,
Weary and old with service, to the mercy
Of a rude stream, that must for ever hide me.
Vain pomp and glory of the world, I hate ye!
I feel my hearth new open'd. Oh how wretched
Is that poor man that hangs on princes' favours!
There is, betwixt that smile he would aspire to,
That sweet aspect of princes, and his ruin,
More pangs and fears than war or women have;
And when he falls, he falls like Lucifer,
Never to hope again.

Why, how now, Cromwell?


Crom. I have no power to speak, Sir,
Wol. What amaz'd

my misfortunes? Can thy spirit wonder A great man should decline? Nay, if you weep, I'm fall'n indeed.

Crom. How does your grace?


Wol. Why well;

Never so truly happy, my good Cromwell.
I know myself now, and I feel within me
A peace above all earthly dignities;

A still and quiet conscience. The king has cur'd me, I humbly thank his grace; and, from these shoulders',

These ruin'd pillars, out of pity taken

A load would sink a navy, too much honour.
O, 'tis a burthen, Cromwell, 'tis a burthen,
Too heavy for a man that hopes for heav'n!
Crom. I'm glad your grace has made that right
use of it.


Wol. I hope I have: I'm able now, methinks, Out of a fortitude of soul I feel,

T' indure more miseries, and greater far,
Than my weak hearted enemies dare offer.-
What news abroad?

Crom. The heaviest and the worst,

Is your displeasure with the King.

Wol. God bless him.

Crom. The next is, that Sir Thomas More is chosen

Lord Chancellor in your place.

Wol. That's somewhat sudden

But he's a learned man. May he continue
Long in his Highness' favour, and do justice
For truth's sake and his conscience; that his bones,
When he has run his course, and sleeps in blessings,
May have a tomb of orphan's tears wept on him!
What more?

Crom. That Cranmer is return'd with welcome; Install'd Lord Archbishop of Canterbury. 'Wol. That's news indeed.

Crom. Last, that the Lady Anne,

Whom the King hath in secrecy long married,
This day was view'd in open as his Queen,
Going to chapel; and the voice is now

Only about her coronation.

Wol. There was the weight that pull'd me down: 0 Cromwell,


The King has gone beyond me: all my glories
In that one woman I have lost for ever.
No sun shall ever usher forth my honours,
Or gild again the noble troops that waited
Upon my smiles. Go, get thee from me Cromwell!
I'm a poor fall'n man, unworthy now

To be thy lord and master. Seek the king,
(That sun I pray may never set) I've told him
What, and how true thou art; he will advance

Some little memory of me will stir him, (I know his noble nature) not to let

Thy hopeful service perish too. Good Cromwell, Neglect him not; make use now, and provide For thine own future safety.

Crom. O my lord,

Must I then leave you? Must I needs forego
So good, so noble, and so true a master?
Bear witness, all that have not hearts of iron,
With what a sorrow Cromwell leaves his lord.
The king shall have my service; but my prayers
For ever, and for ever, shall be yours.

Wol. Cromwell, I did not think to shed a tear
In all my miseries, but thou hast forc'd me,
Out of thy honest truth, to play the woman-
Let's dry our eyes; and thus far hear me, Crom-

And when I am forgotten, as I shall be,
And sleep in dull cold marble, where no mention
Of me must more be heard, say then I taught thee;
Say, Wolsey, that once rode the waves of glory,
And sounded all the depths and shoals of honour,
Found thee a way, out of his wreck, to rise in :
A sure and safe one, though thy master miss'd it.
Mark but my fall, and that which ruin'd me:
Cromwell, I charge thee, fling away ambition;
By that sin fell the angels; how can man then
(Tho' th' image of his Maker) hope to win by't?
Love thyself last; cherish those hearts that wait

Corruption wins not more than honesty.

and fear not.

Still in thy right hand carry gentle Peace,
To silence en ious tongues. Be just,
Let all the ends thou aim'st at, be thy Country's
Thy God's, and Truth's; then if thou fall'st, Ó

Thou fall'st a blessed martyr. Serve the king-
And pr'ythee lead me in-

There take an inventory of all I have,

To the last penny, 'tis the king's. My robe,
And my integrity to Heav'n, is all

I dare now call my own. O Cromwell, Cromwell!
Had I but serv'd my God with half the zeal
I serv'd my king, he would not in mine age
Have left me naked to mine enemies.

Crom. Good Sir, have patience.

Wol. So I have. Farewell

The hopes of court! my hopes in Heaven do dwell.




BLow winds, and crack your cheeks;rage, blow!


You, cataracts, and hurricanoes, spout

Till you have drench'd our steeples, drown'd the cocks!

You sulph'rous and thought-executing fires,
Singe my white head. And thou, all shaking thun-


Strike flat the thick rotundity o' th' world! Crack Nature's mould, all germins spill at once That make ungrateful man!

Rumble thy belly full, spit fire, spout rain Nor rain, wind, thunder, fire, are my daughters. I tax not you, ye elements, with unkindness; I never gave you kingdoms, call'd you children; You owe me no subscription. Then let fall Your horrible pleasure. Here I stand your brave, A poor, infirm, weak, and despis'd old man; But yet I call you servile ministers,

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