« PreviousContinue »
[K. Edward.] Suppose they take offence without a cause,
They are but Lewi's and Warwick; I am Edward,
What, brother Richard, you offended too ? [Gloster.] Not I:
No, heaven forbid that I should wish them sever'd
To sunder such as yoke so well together. [K. Edward.] Setting your scorns and your mislike aside,
Give me some reason why the lady Grey
Say, Clarence, if you can. [Clarence.] Full well I can.
Because a French alliance would have strengthen'd
Our commonwealth ; this homebred marriage cannot. [K. Edward.] England is safe, if true within itself. [Clarence.] Yes; but the safer, being back’d by France.
Hastings advances and speaks. [Hastings.] Let us be back'd by heaven and by the seas,
Which heave'n hath given for fence impregnable ;
In those, and in ourselves, our safety lies. [Clarence.) For that one speech, lord Hastings well de
The heiress of the lands of Hungerford. (serves
So does her son deserve lord Bonville's daughter. [K. Edward.] Alas, poor Clarence! is it for a wife
That thou art malecontent ? I will provide thee. (Clarence.] In choosing for yourself, you show'd a judge
Which, by your leave, shall not decide for me. (ment
[K. Edward.] Leave me, or tarry, Edward will be king.
- Make way there : let that man approach, and speak. Now, messenger, what letters, or what news
From France ? [Messenger.] My sovereign liege, no letters; and the words
Are such as I, without your special pardon,
Dare not repeat.
E’en more than lady Bona, or king Lewis,
That he hath done me wrong; and I 'll uncrown him." [K. Edward.) Ha! durst the traitor breathe out words so
Well, I will arm me, being thus forewarn'd. (proud ?
But say, are Margaret and Warwick friends ? [Messenger.) Ay, gracious sovereign; and so link'd are
That young prince Edward is to marry Anne, [they,
His second daughter. At this moment, Clarence, following Somerset, hastily quits the presence : saying, [Clarence.] Brother mine, farewell! Clarence shall hence to Warwick's other daughter.
(a pause.) [K. Edward.] I rather would have foes than hollow friends,
Now, brother Richard, will you stand by us ? [Gloster.] Ay, in despite of all that shall withstand you. [K. Edward.] Hastings, will you ? and Montague, will you ?
And you ? and you? I ask of each, -will you ?
Till Warwick meet us with his foreign power.
ward to Flanders ; the march of Warwick to London, and the reseating of Henry on the throne; the return of Edward, and the events which immediately followed his reappearance in arms ;—we must pass all this, till we reach a scene in which the poet places us on the walls of Coventry, at which spot the earl of Warwick is awaiting the junction of those who are pledged to make common cause with him against Edward: he speaks to the messengers and others : [Warwick.] Where is the post that came from valiant Ox
How far hence is thy lord, mine honest fellow ? [ford ? [Messenger.] By this at Dunsmore, marching hitherward. [Warwick.] There was another post from brother Montague. (Second Mess.] 'Tis I, my lord : and I do bring you word,
He is by this at Da’ntry with his troop. [Warwick.] 'Tis well: and here is sír John Somerville.
-Speak, Somerville, what says my loving son;
And, by thy guess, how near us is he now? [Somerville.] My gracious lord, I left the duke of Clarence
At Southam; only two hours march from hence. (Warwick.] Then is he close at hand: hark! that's his
drum. [Somerville.] It is not his, my lord; here Southam lies :
The drum ,your lordship hears, marches from Warwick. [Warwick.] Who should it be? perchance, unlook’d-for They are at hand, and we shall quickly know. [friends.
Oh, welcome, Oxford ! for we want thy help.
And there to bid them battle ? Say, lord Somerset. [Somerset.] Yes, Warwick; yes. No words: but lead the
Lords, to the field; and still hope victory. [way: Leaving the event of the next battle to be told by those who meet on the field of Tewkesbury to make the last struggle for the house of Lancaster, we now hasten to that event, and imagine queen Margaret and her son Edward surrounded by those who still adhere to their falling fortunes, on the morning of the fourth of May, in the year fourteen hundred and seventy-one. The queen addresses the noblemen around her :-prince Edward, Oxford, and Somerset are the other speakers. [Q. Margaret.] Wise men, my lords, ne'er sit and wail But cheerly seek redress.
But keep our course, though the rough winds say—no,
'Twere childish weakness to lament or fear. [P. Edward.] Methinks a coward, hearing words like these,
And from a woman too, must feel his breast
Lest, in our need, he might infect another.
And warriors faint ! why, 'twere perpetual shame.
To bear his image, and renew his glories !
For such a hope, let him go home to bed. [Q. Margaret.] Thanks, gentle Somerset, and Oxford,