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Glou. Alas! why would you heap this care on me?

I am unfit for state and majesty:

I do beseech you, take it not amiss;
I cannot nor I will not yield to you.

Buck. If you refuse it, as in love and zeal,
Loath to depose the child, your brother's son ;
As well we know your tenderness of heart
And gentle, kind, effeminate remorse,
Which we have noted in you to your kindred,
And equally indeed to all estates;
Yet whether you accept our suit or no,
Your brother's son shall never reign our king;
But we will plant some other in the throne,
To the disgrace and downfall of your house :
And in this resolution here we leave you.
Come, citizens, we will entreat no more.


Exeunt BUCKINGHAM and Citizens. Cates. Call him again, sweet prince; accept their suit:


If you deny them, all the land will rue it.
Glou. Will you enforce me to a world of cares?
Call them again: I am not made of stone,
But penetrable to your kind entreaties,

Exit CATESBY. Albeit against my conscience and my soul.

Re-enter BUCKINGHAM and the rest. Cousin of Buckingham, and sage, grave men, Since you will buckle fortune on my back, To bear her burden, whe'r I will or no, I must have patience to endure the load: But if black scandal or foul-fac'd reproach Attend the sequel of your imposition, Your mere enforcement shall acquittance me From all the impure blots and stains thereof; For God doth know, and you may partly see, How far I am from the desire of this.


May. God bless your grace! we see it, and will say it.

Glou. In saying so you shall but say the truth. Buck. Then I salute you with this royal title: Long live King Richard, England's worthy king! All. Amen.

Buck. To-morrow may it please you to be crown'd?


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Enter, on one side, Queen ELIZABETH, Duchess of YORK, and Marquess of DORSET; on the other, ANNE, Duchess of GLOUCESTER, leading Lady MARGARET PLANTAGENET, CLARENCE'S young daughter.

Duch. Who meets us here? my niece Plantagenet,

Led in the hand of her kind aunt of Gloucester !

Now, for my life, she's wand'ring to the Tower,
On pure heart's love to greet the tender princes.
Daughter, well met.
God give your graces both
A happy and a joyful time of day!
Q. Eliz. As much to you, good sister! whither


Anne. No further than the Tower; and, as I

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And, in good time, here the lieutenant comes.
Master lieutenant, pray you, by your leave,
How doth the prince, and my young son of York?
Brak. Right well, dear madam. By your

I may not suffer you to visit them :
The king hath strictly charg'd the contrary.
Q. Eliz. The king! who's that?

I mean the lord protector. Q. Eliz. The Lord protect him from that kingly title!

Hath he set bounds between their love and me? I am their mother; who shall bar me from them? Duch. I am their father's mother; I will see them.


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Dor. Be of good cheer: mother, how fares your grace?

Q. Eliz. O Dorset ! speak not to me, get thee gone;


Death and destruction dog thee at thy heels :
Thy mother's name is ominous to children.
If thou wilt outstrip death, go cross the seas,
And live with Richmond, from the reach of hell:
Go, hie thee, hie thee from this slaughter-house,
Lest thou increase the number of the dead,
And make me die the thrall of Margaret's curse,
Nor mother, wife, nor England's counted queen.
Stan. Full of wise care is this your counsel,

Take all the swift advantage of the hours;
You shall have letters from me to my son
In your behalf, to meet you on the way:
Be not ta'en tardy by unwise delay.

Duch. O ill-dispersing wind of misery!
O my accursed womb, the bed of death,
A cockatrice hast thou hatch'd to the world,
Whose unavoided eye is murderous.


Stan. Come, madam, come; I in all haste was sent.

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Which issu'd from my other angel husband,
And that dearsaint which then I weeping follow'd;
O! when, I say, I look'd on Richard's face,
This was my wish: Be thou,' quoth I, 'accurs'd,
For making me, so young, so old a widow!
And, when thou wedd'st, let sorrow haunt thy bed;
And be thy wife, if any be so mad,
More miserable by the life of thee
Thanthou hast made me by my dear lord's death!'
Lo! ere I can repeat this curse again,
Within so small a time, my woman's heart
Grossly grew captive to his honey words,
And prov'd the subject of mine own soul's curse :
Which hitherto hath held mine eyes from rest;
For never yet one hour in his bed
Did I enjoy the golden dew of sleep,
But with his timorous dreams was still awak'd.
Besides, he hates me for my father Warwick,
And will, no doubt, shortly be rid of me.


Q. Eliz. Poor heart, adieu! I pity thy complaining.

Anne. No more than with my soul I mourn for yours.

Dor. Farewell! thou woeful welcomer of glory. Anne. Adieu! poor soul, that tak'st thy leave of it.


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SCENE II.-The Same. A Room of State. Flourish of trumpets. RICHARD, in pomp, crowned; BUCKINGHAM, CATESBY, a Page, and Others. K. Rich. Standall apart. Cousin of Buckingham! Buck. My gracious sovereign!

K. Rich. Give me thy hand.

He ascends the throne. Thus high, by thy advice And thy assistance, is King Richard seated: But shall we wear these glories for a day, Or shall they last, and we rejoice in them? Buck. Still live they, and for ever let them last! K. Rich. Ah! Buckingham, now do I play the touch,

To try if thou be current gold indeed: Young Edward lives: think now what I would speak.

Buck. Say on, my loving lord.


K. Rich. Why, Buckingham, I say I would be king.

Buck. Why, so you are, my thrice-renowned lord.
K. Rich. Ha! am I king? 'Tis so; but
Edward lives.

Buck. True, noble prince.
K. Rich.

O bitter consequence, That Edward still should live! "True, noble prince.'

Cousin, thou wert not wont to be so dull:
Shall I be plain? I wish the bastards dead;
And I would have it suddenly perform'd.
What say'st thou now? speak suddenly, be brief.
Buck. Your grace may do your pleasure.
K. Rich. Tut, tut! thou art all ice, thy kind-
ness freezeth.


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K. Rich. Know'st thou not any whom corrupting gold

Will tempt unto a close exploit of death?
Page. I know a discontented gentleman,
Whose humble means match not his haughty

Gold were as good as twenty orators,
And will, no doubt, tempt him to any thing.
K. Rich. What is his name?


His name, my lord, is Tyrrel.
K. Rich. I partly know the man: go, call
him hither.
Exit Page. 40
The deep-revolving witty Buckingham
No more shall be the neighbour to my counsel.
Hath he so long held out with me untir'd,
And stops he now for breath? well, be it so.

How now, Lord Stanley! what's the news?
Stan. Know, my loving lord,

The Marquess Dorset, as I hear, is fled
To Richmond, in the parts where he abides.
K. Rich. Come hither, Catesby: rumour it

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Tyr. Please you; but I had rather kill two enemies.

K. Rich. Why, there thou hast it: two deep enemies,


Foes to my rest, and my sweet sleep's disturbers,
Are they that I would have thee deal upon.
Tyrrel, I mean those bastards in the Tower.
Tyr. Let me have open means to come to them,
And soon I'll rid you from the fear of them.
K. Rich. Thou sing'st sweet music. Hark,
come hither, Tyrrel:

Go, by this token: rise, and lend thine ear.

Whispers. There is no more but so: say it is done, And I will love thee, and prefer thee for it. Tyr. I will dispatch it straight.




Buck. My lord, I have consider'd in my mind The late request that you did sound me in. K. Rich. Well, let that rest. Dorset is fled to Richmond.

Buck. I hear the news, my lord.

K. Rich. Stanley, he is your wife's son; well look unto it.

Buck. My lord, I claim the gift, my due by promise,

For which your honour and your faith is pawn'd; The earldom of Hereford and the moveables Which you have promised I shall possess.

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Buck. My lord!

K. Rich. How chance the prophet could not at that time

Have told me, I being by, that I should kill him?
Buck. My lord, your promise for the earldom,-
K. Rich. Richmond! When last I was at Exeter,
The mayor in courtesy show'd me the castle, 102
And call'dit Rougemont: at which name I started,
Because a bard of Ireland told me once

I should not live long after I saw Richmond.
Buck. My lord!

R. Rich. Ay, what's o'clock ?

Buck. I am thus bold to put your grace in mind Of what you promis'd me.

K. Rich. Well, but what 's o'clock ?

Upon the stroke of ten. 110

K. Rich. Well, let it strike.
Why let it strike?
K. Rich. Because that, like a Jack, thou
keep'st the stroke

Between thy begging and my meditation.

I am not in the giving vein to-day.
Buck. Why, then resolve me whether you will

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Thus, thus,' quoth Forrest, girdling one another Within their alabaster innocent arms: Their lips were four red roses on a stalk, And in their summer beauty kiss'd each other. A book of prayers on their pillow lay; Which once,' quoth Forrest, 'almost chang'd my mind;

But O the devil'-there the villain stopp'd; When Dighton thus told on: We smothered The most replenished sweet work of nature, That from the prime creation e'er she fram'd.' Hence both are gone with conscience and re

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Enter King RICHARD.

And here he comes.


All health, my sovereign

K. Rich. Kind Tyrrel, am I happy in thy news? Tyr. If to have done the thing you gave in charge

Beget your happiness, be happy then,

For it is done.

K. Rich.

But didst thou see them dead?

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SCENE IV. The Same. Before the Palace.
Enter Queen MARGARET.

Q. Mar. So, now prosperity begins to mellow
And drop into the rotten mouth of death.
Here in these confines slily have I lurk'd
To watch the waning of mine enemies.
A dire induction am I witness to,

And will to France, hoping the consequence Will prove as bitter, black, and tragical. Withdraw thee, wretched Margaret: who comes here?

Enter Queen ELIZABETH and the Duchess of YORK.

Q. Eliz. Ah! my poor princes, ah! my tender babes,

My unblown flowers, new-appearing sweets,


If yet your gentle souls fly in the air And be not fix'd in doom perpetual, Hover about me with your airy wings, And hear your mother's lamentation.

Q. Mar. Hover about her; say, that right for right

Hath dimm'd your infant morn to aged night.

Duch. So many miseries have craz'd my voice, That my woe-wearied tongue is still and mute. Edward Plantagenet, why art thou dead? Q. Mar. Plantagenet doth quit Plantagenet ; Edward for Edward pays a dying debt.

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Q. Eliz. Wilt thou, O God! fly from such gentle lambs,

And throw them in the entrails of the wolf? When didst thou sleep when such a deed was done?

Q. Mar. When holy Harry died, and my sweet


Duch. Dead life, blind sight, poor mortal living ghost,

Woe's scene, world's shame, grave's due by life usurp'd,

Brief abstract and record of tedious days,
Rest thy unrest on England's lawful earth,

Sitting down, Unlawfully made drunk with innocent blood! Q. Eliz. Ah! that thou would'st as soon afford a grave


As thou canst yield a melancholy seat;
Then would I hide my bones, not rest them here.
Ah! who hath any cause to mourn but I?
Sitting down by her.

Q. Mar. If ancient sorrow be most reverend,
Give mine the benefit of seniory,
And let my griefs frown on the upper hand.
If sorrow can admit society,

Sitting down with them.
Tell o'er your woes again by viewing mine:
I had an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him;
I had a Harry, till a Richard kill'd him ;
Thou hadst an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him :
Thou hadst a Richard, till a Richard kill'd him.
Duch. I had a Richard too, and thou dids:
kill him;

I had a Rutland too, thou holp'st to kill him.
Q. Mar. Thou hadst a Clarence too, and
Richard kill'd him.

From forth the kennel of thy womb hath crept
A hell-hound that doth hunt us all to death:
That dog, that had his teeth before his eyes,
To worry lambs and lap their gentle blood,
That foul defacer of God's handiwork,
That excellent grand-tyrant of the earth,
That reigns in galled eyes of weeping souls,
Thy womb let loose, to chase us to our graves
O! upright, just, and true-disposing God,
How do I thank thee that this carnal cur
Preys on the issue of his mother's body,
And makes her pew-fellow with others' moan.
Duch. O! Harry's wife, triumph not in my woes:
God witness with me, I have wept for thine.

Q. Mar. Bear with me; I am hungry for revenge,
And now I cloy me with beholding it.
Thy Edward he is dead, that kill'd my Edward;
Thy other Edward dead, to quit my Edward;
Young York he is but boot, because both they
Match not the high perfection of my loss:
Thy Clarence he is dead that stabb'd my Edward;
And the beholders of this frantic play,


The adulterate Hastings, Rivers, Vaughan, Grey,
Untimely smother'd in their dusky graves.
Richard yet lives, hell's black intelligencer,
Only reserv'd their factor, to buy souls
And send them thither; but at hand, at hand,
Ensues his piteous and unpitied end:
Earth gapes, hell burns, fiends roar, saints pray,
To have him suddenly convey'd from hence.
Cancel his bond of life, dear God: I pray,
That I may live and say, The dog is dead.

Q. Eliz. O! thou didst prophesy the time would


That I should wish for thee to help me curse 80
That bottled spider, that foul bunchback'd toad.
Q. Mar. I call'd thee then vain flourish of my

I call'd thee then poor shadow, painted queen;
The presentation of but what I was;
The flattering index of a direful pageant;
One heav'd o' high, to be hurl'd down below;
A mother only mock'd with two fair babes;
A dream of what thou wert, a breath, a bubble, |
A sign of dignity, a garish flag


To be the aim of every dangerous shot;
A queen in jest, only to fill the scene.
Where is thy husband now? where be thy brothers?
Where be thy two sons? wherein dost thou joy?
Who sues and kneels and cries 'God save the

Where be the bending peers that flatter'd thee?
Where be the thronging troops that follow'd thee?
Decline all this, and see what now thou art:
For happy wife, a most distressed widow;
For joyful mother, one that wails the name;
For one being sued to, one that humbly sues;
For queen, a very caitiff crown'd with care; 101
For she that scorn'd at me, now scorn'd of me;
For she being fear'd of all, now fearing one;
For she commanding all, obey'd of none.
Thus hath the course of justice whirl'd about,
And left thee but a very prey to time;
Having no more but thought of what thou wert,
To torture thee the more, being what thou art.
Thou didst usurp my place, and dost thou not
Usurp the just proportion of my sorrow?
Now thy proud neck bears half my burden'd yoke;
From which even here I slip my wearied head,
And leave the burden of it all on thee.
Farewell, York's wife, and queen of sad mischance:
These English woes shall make me smile in France.
Q. Eliz. O thou, well skill'd in curses, stay

And teach me how to curse mine enemies.


Q. Mar. Forbear to sleep the night, and fast the day;


Compare dead happiness with living woe;
Think that thy babes were fairer than they were,
And he that slew them fouler than he is:
Bettering thy loss makes the bad causer worse:
Revolving this will teach thee how to curse.
Q. Eliz. My words are dull; O! quicken them
with thine.

Q. Mar. Thy woes will make them sharp, and pierce like mine.

Exit. Duch. Why should calamity be full of words? Q. Eliz. Windy attorneys to their client woes, Airy succeeders of intestate joys, Poor breathing orators of miseries!


Let them have scope: though what they do impart Help nothing else, yet do they ease the heart.

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Let not the heavens hear these tell-tale women
Rail on the Lord's anointed. Strike, I say!
Flourish. Alarums.

Either be patient, and entreat me fair,
Or with the clamorous report of war
Thus will I drown your exclamations.
Duch. Art thou my son?

K. Rich. Ay, I thank God, my father, and yourself.

Duch. Then patiently hear my impatience.
K. Rich. Madam, I have a touch of your con-

That cannot brook the accent of reproof.
Duch. O let me speak.
K. Rich. Do then; but I'll not hear. 160
Duch. I will be mild and gentle in my words.
K. Rich. And brief, good mother; for I am in

Duch. Art thou so hasty? I have stay'd for thee, God knows, in torment and in agony.

K. Rich. And came I not at last to comfort you? Duch. No, by the holy rood, thou know'st it well, Thou cam'st on earth to make the earth my hell. A grievous burden was thy birth to me; Tetchy and wayward was thy infancy; Thy school-days frightful, desperate, wild and furious;


Thy prime of manhood daring, bold and venturous;
Thy age confirm'd, proud, subtle, sly, and bloody,
More mild, but yet more harmful, kind in hatred:
What comfortable hour canst thou name
That ever grac'd me with thy company?

K. Rich. Faith, none, but Humphrey Hour, that call'd your grace

To breakfast once forth of my company.
If I be so disgracious in your eye,
Let me march on, and not offend you, madam.
Strike up the drum.

I prithee, hear me speak. 180
K. Rich. You speak too bitterly.
Hear me a word;
For I shall never speak to thee again.
K. Rich. So!

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