Imatges de pÓgina

York.] Should I do so, I should belie my thoughts :

Comfort's in heaven, and we are on the earth,
Where nothing lives but crosses, care, and grief.
Here am I left to underprop this land,
Who, weak with age, cannot support myself.
Your husband, he is gone to save far off,
Whilst others come to make him lose at home.
Now comes the sick hour that his surfeit made;

Now shall he try his friends that flatter'd him.
A servant enters, who tells York that his son, whom he
had sent him to, was gone before he came : York continues :
He was? why so! go

all which


it will.
The nobles, they are fled,—the commons cold,
And will I fear revolt on Hereford's side.
Get thee to Plashy, to my

sister Gloster,
And bid her send me quick a thousand pound:

Hold, take my ring.
[Servant.) My lord, I had forgot to tell your lordship:

To-day, as I came by, I called there :

But I shall grieve you to report the rest.
(York.] What is it, knave ?
[Servant.] An hour before I came, the duchess died.
[York.) Heaven for his mercy! what a tide of woes

Comes rushing on this woeful land at once!
I know not what to do! I would to heaven,
So my untruth had not provok'd him to 't,-
The king had cut off my head with my brother's.
What, are the posts dispatch'd for Ireland ?
How shall we do for money for these wars ?
Come, sister, --cousin, I would say, -pray pardon me.
Go, fellow, get thee home, provide some carts,
And bring away the armour that is there.
Gentlemen, will you go muster men ? If I know
How, or which way to order these affairs,
Thus thrust disorderly into my hands,
Never believe me. Both are my kinsmen ;
The one's my sovereign, whom both my


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And duty bid defend : the other, again,
He is my kinsman, whom the king hath wrong'd;
Whom conscience and my kindred bid to right.
Well, something I must do. Come, cousin, I 'll
Dispose of you. Go muster up your men,
And meet me presently at Berkeley, gentlemen.
I should to Plashy too ; —
But time will not permit. All is uneven,
And every thing is left at six and seven.









HISTORICAL MEMORANDUM. After Richard had landed in Wales, and was almost deserted by his army, he fled privately to the isle of Anglesey, with a purpose of reaching Ireland or France : but Northumberland treacherously got possession of his person, and carried him to Bolingbroke at Flint Castle, who was aware of the whole transaction. Shakspeare represents the facts somewhat differently, but truly in the main. His representation, likewise, of the manner of the king's death, though for a long time the popular account, has yielded to the belief that Richard was starved to death in Pomfret castle.

Bolingbroke with his force is on his way through the wilds of Gloucestershire; and we may suppose that, on the occasion of a temporary halt, he and Northumberland are in conversation ; during which, other persons come up: Bolingbroke first speaks : [Bolingbroke.] How far is it, my lord, to Berkeley now? [Northumberland.] Believe me, noble lord,

I am a stranger here in Glou’cestershire.
These high wild hills, and rough uneven ways,
Draw out our miles, and make them wearisome;
And yet your fair discourse hath much beguild
The tediousness of travel. Who comes hither ?

[a pause.]

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It is my son, young Harry Percy :

Harry, how fares your uncle Worcester ? [Hot.] I ha'd thought, my lord, to ha've heard his health of you. [Northumberland.] Why, is he not with the queen ? [Hotspur.] No, my good lord; he hath forsa'en the court,

Broken his staff of office, and dispers'd

The household of the king. [Northumberland.) What was his reason? [Hotspur.] Because your lordship was proclaimed traitor:

And he is gone straightway to Ravenspurg,
To offer service to the duke of Hereford ;
And sent me o’er by Berkeley, to discover
What power the duke of York hath levied there

Then, with direction to repair to Ravenspurg. [North.] Have you forgot the duke of Hereford, boy ? (Hotspur.] Forgot? Why no, my lord; for to my knowledge,

I never, in my life, did see the duke. [North.] Then learn to know him now: this is the duke. [Hotspur.] My gracious lord, I tender you my service,

Such as it is, bei'ng tender, raw, and young.
[Bolingbroke.] I thank thee, gentle Percy; and be sure

I count myself in nothing else so happy,
As in a soul remembering my

friends :
And, as my fortune ripens with thy love,
So shall increase thy true love's recompense :
My heart this covenant makes ; my hand thus seals it.
How far is it to Berkeley ? And what stir

Keeps good old York there?
[Hotspur.] There stands the castle by yon tuft of trees,

Mann'd with three hundred men, as I have heard ;
And in it are lords York, Berkeley, and Seymour :

Here come more friends.
Bolingbroke advances to receive them, and spears :

[Bolingbroke.] Welcome, my lords of Ross and Willoughby.

I wot your love pursues a banish'd traitor.

My treasury as yet is only thanks [Ross.] Your presence makes us rich, most noble lord. [Bolingbroke.] Evermore thanks, the exchequer of the poor;

Which, till my infant fortune comes to years,
Stands for more bounty.
But here comes one that seems not of our party.

It is my lord of Berkeley, as I guess. [a pause.] [Berkeley.] My lords, I have a message to deliver

To one among you whom-Ah! now I see him :

To you, my lord of Hereford, I come.
[Bolingbroke.] I answer to no name but Lancaster ;

And I am come to seek that name in England;
And I must find that title in your tongue,

Before I make reply to aught you say. [Berkeley.] Mistake me not, my lord ; 'tis not my meaning

To raze one title of your honour out.
To you, my lord (what lord you will), I come,

From him who now is regent of the land,
The duke of York, to know what sets you on

To fright with arms a nation lull'd in peace. [Bolingbroke.] I shall not need transport my words by you;

For here in person comes his grace of York. [a pause.

My noble uncle, thus I bend my knee. [York.] Show me thy humble heart, and not thy knee,

Whose duty is deceivable and false.
[Bolingbroke.] My gracious uncle!
[York.) Tut, tut!

Grace me no grace, nor uncle me no uncle:
I am no traitor's uncle, and that word-grace,
In an ungracious mouth is but profane.
Why have those banish'd and forbidden legs
Dar'd once to touch a dust of England's ground ?
But more than why: why have they dar'd to march

So many miles upon her peaceful bosom,
Frighting her pale-fac'd villages with war?
Com'st thou because the’ anointed king is hence ?
Why, foolish boy, the king is left behind ;
For in my loyal bosom lies his power.
Were I but now the lord of such hot youth,
As when brave Gaunt thy father, and myself,
Rescued the Black Prince from the ranks of France,
Oh, then how quickly should this arm of mine,

Now priso’ner to the palsy, chasten thee ! [Bolingbroke.] My gracious uncle, let me know my fault. [York.) Fault!

Why gross rebellion and detested treason.
Why art thou come
Before the expiration of thy time,

With braving arms against thy absent sovereign ? [Bolingbroke.] As I was banishid, I was banish'd Hereford ;

But as I come, I come for Lancaster.
And, noble uncle, I beseech your grace,
Look on my wrongs with an impartial eye.
You are my father; for methinks in you
I see old Gaunt alive :-0 then, my father,
Will you permit that I should stand condemn'd
A wandering vagabond, my rights and royalties
Pluck'd from my arms perforce, and given to upstarts ?
If that my cousin king be king of England,
It must be granted I am duke of Lancaster.
I am denied to sue my livery here,
And yet my letters-patent give me leave.
What would you have me do? I am a subject
And challenge law ;-attorneys are denied me,
And therefore perso'nally I lay my claim

my inheritance of free descent. The speech is followed by a general expression of approbation from the lords present, and a call upon the duke to make common cause with them; to which York replies :

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