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K. Rich. Tell me moreover, hast thou sounded him,
If he appeal the duke on ancient malice;
Or worthily, as a good subject should,
On some known ground of treachery in him? Gaunt. As near as I could sift him on that argument,
On some apparent danger seen in him,
Aim'd at your highness; no inveterate malice.
And frowning brow to brow, ourselves will hear
Re-enter Attendants, with BOLINGBROKE1 and
Boling. May many years of happy days befall My gracious sovereign, my most loving liege! Nor. Each day still better other's happiness; Until the heavens, envying earth's good hap, Add an immortal title to your crown!
K. Rich. We thank you both: yet one but flat
As well appeareth by the cause you come5: Namely, to appeal each other of high treason.Cousin of Hereford, what dost thou object Against the Duke of Norfolk, Thomas Mowbray? Boling. First, (heaven be the record of my speech!) In the devotion of a subject's love,
4 Drayton asserts that Henry Plantagenet, the eldest son of John of Gaunt, was not distinguished by the name of Bolingbroke till after he had assumed the crown. He is called earl of Hereford by the old historians, and was surnamed Bolingbroke from having been born at the town of that name in Lincolnshire, about 1366.
5 i. e. 'by the cause you come The suppression of the preposition has been shown to have been frequent with Shak
Tendering the precious safety of my prince,
Come I appellant to this princely presence.-
Nor. Let not my cold words here accuse my zeal: "Tis not the trial of a woman's war,
The bitter clamour of two eager tongues,
And let him be no kinsman to my liege,
I do defy him, and I spit at him;
Call him a slanderous coward, and a villain :
Where ever Englishman durst set his foot.
6 My right-drawn sword my sword drawn in a right or just
Mean time, let this defend my loyalty,-
Disclaiming here the kindred of the king;
Which fear, not reverence, makes thee to except:
Or chivalrous design of knightly trial;
And, when I mount, alive may I not light,
K. Rich. What doth our cousin lay to Mowbray's charge?
It must be great, that can inherits us
So much as of a thought of ill in him.
Boling. Look, what I speak my life shall prove it true;
That Mowbray hath receiv'd eight thousand nobles,
8 To inherit, in the language of Shakspeare, is to possess :Such delight
Among fresh female buds shall you this night
Inherit at my house.'-Romeo and Juliet, Act i, Sc. 2.
9 Lewd formerly signified knavish, ungracious, naughty, idle, beside its now general acceptation Vide note on Much Ado about Nothing, Act v. Sc. 1. Vol. ii. p. 192.
Fetch from false Mowbray their first head and spring.
And, consequently, like a traitor coward,
Which blood, like sacrificing Abel's, cries,
Were he my brother, nay, my kingdom's heir
10 Thomas of Woodstock, the youngest son of Edward III. who was murdered at Calais in 1397. See Froissart, chap. ccxxvi. 11 i. e. prompt them, set them on by injurious hints.
12 Reproach to his ancestry.
Upon remainder of a dear account,
Since last I went to France to fetch his queen13: Now swallow down that lie.---For Gloster's death,
I slew him not; but to my own disgrace,
Even in the best blood chamber'd in his bosom:
Your highness to assign our trial day.
K. Rich. Wrath-kindled gentlemen, be rul'd by me: Let's purge this choler without letting blood: This we prescribe, though no physician16; Deep malice makes too deep incision: Forget, forgive; conclude, and be agreed; Our doctors say, this is no time to bleed.-
13 The duke of Norfolk was joined in commission with Edward earl of Rutland (the Aumerle of this play) to go to France in the year 1395, to demand in marriage Isabel, eldest daughter of Charles VI. then between seven and eight years of age. Richard was married to his young consort in November 1396, at Calais; his first wife, Anne, daughter of Charles IV. emperor of Germany, died at Shene on Whit Sunday, 1394. His marriage with Isabella was merely political, it was accompanied with an agreement for a truce between France and England for thirty years. 14 Charged.
16 Pope thought that some of the rhyming verses in this play were not from the hand of Shakspeare.