Richard II, by William Shakespeare

Act II

Scene I. Ely House.

Enter John Of Gaunt sick, with the Duke Of York, & c

John Of Gaunt Will the king come, that I may breathe my last
In wholesome counsel to his unstaid youth?

Duke Of York Vex not yourself, nor strive not with your breath;
For all in vain comes counsel to his ear.

John Of Gaunt O, but they say the tongues of dying men
Enforce attention like deep harmony:
Where words are scarce, they are seldom spent in vain,
For they breathe truth that breathe their words in pain.
He that no more must say is listen’d more
Than they whom youth and ease have taught to glose;
More are men’s ends mark’d than their lives before:
The setting sun, and music at the close,
As the last taste of sweets, is sweetest last,
Writ in remembrance more than things long past:
Though Richard my life’s counsel would not hear,
My death’s sad tale may yet undeaf his ear.

Duke Of York No; it is stopp’d with other flattering sounds,
As praises, of whose taste the wise are fond,
Lascivious metres, to whose venom sound
The open ear of youth doth always listen;
Report of fashions in proud Italy,
Whose manners still our tardy apish nation
Limps after in base imitation.
Where doth the world thrust forth a vanity —
So it be new, there’s no respect how vile —
That is not quickly buzzed into his ears?
Then all too late comes counsel to be heard,
Where will doth mutiny with wit’s regard.
Direct not him whose way himself will choose:
’Tis breath thou lack’st, and that breath wilt thou lose.

John Of Gaunt Methinks I am a prophet new inspired
And thus expiring do foretell of him:
His rash fierce blaze of riot cannot last,
For violent fires soon burn out themselves;
Small showers last long, but sudden storms are short;
He tires betimes that spurs too fast betimes;
With eager feeding food doth choke the feeder:
Light vanity, insatiate cormorant,
Consuming means, soon preys upon itself.
This royal throne of kings, this scepter’d isle,
This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars,
This other Eden, demi-paradise,
This fortress built by Nature for herself
Against infection and the hand of war,
This happy breed of men, this little world,
This precious stone set in the silver sea,
Which serves it in the office of a wall,
Or as a moat defensive to a house,
Against the envy of less happier lands,
This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England,
This nurse, this teeming womb of royal kings,
Fear’d by their breed and famous by their birth,
Renowned for their deeds as far from home,
For Christian service and true chivalry,
As is the sepulchre in stubborn Jewry,
Of the world’s ransom, blessed Mary’s Son,
This land of such dear souls, this dear dear land,
Dear for her reputation through the world,
Is now leased out, I die pronouncing it,
Like to a tenement or pelting farm:
England, bound in with the triumphant sea
Whose rocky shore beats back the envious siege
Of watery Neptune, is now bound in with shame,
With inky blots and rotten parchment bonds:
That England, that was wont to conquer others,
Hath made a shameful conquest of itself.
Ah, would the scandal vanish with my life,
How happy then were my ensuing death!

Enter King Richard II and Queen, Duke Of Aumerle, Bushy, Green, Bagot, Lord Ross, and Lord Willoughby

Duke Of York The king is come: deal mildly with his youth;
For young hot colts being raged do rage the more.

Queen How fares our noble uncle, Lancaster?

King Richard II What comfort, man? how is’t with aged Gaunt?

John Of Gaunt O how that name befits my composition!
Old Gaunt indeed, and gaunt in being old:
Within me grief hath kept a tedious fast;
And who abstains from meat that is not gaunt?
For sleeping England long time have I watch’d;
Watching breeds leanness, leanness is all gaunt:
The pleasure that some fathers feed upon,
Is my strict fast; I mean, my children’s looks;
And therein fasting, hast thou made me gaunt:
Gaunt am I for the grave, gaunt as a grave,
Whose hollow womb inherits nought but bones.

King Richard II Can sick men play so nicely with their names?

John Of Gaunt No, misery makes sport to mock itself:
Since thou dost seek to kill my name in me,
I mock my name, great king, to flatter thee.

King Richard II Should dying men flatter with those that live?

John Of Gaunt No, no, men living flatter those that die.

King Richard II Thou, now a-dying, say’st thou flatterest me.

John Of Gaunt O, no! thou diest, though I the sicker be.

King Richard II I am in health, I breathe, and see thee ill.

John Of Gaunt Now He that made me knows I see thee ill;
Ill in myself to see, and in thee seeing ill.
Thy death-bed is no lesser than thy land
Wherein thou liest in reputation sick;
And thou, too careless patient as thou art,
Commit’st thy anointed body to the cure
Of those physicians that first wounded thee:
A thousand flatterers sit within thy crown,
Whose compass is no bigger than thy head;
And yet, incaged in so small a verge,
The waste is no whit lesser than thy land.
O, had thy grandsire with a prophet’s eye
Seen how his son’s son should destroy his sons,
From forth thy reach he would have laid thy shame,
Deposing thee before thou wert possess’d,
Which art possess’d now to depose thyself.
Why, cousin, wert thou regent of the world,
It were a shame to let this land by lease;
But for thy world enjoying but this land,
Is it not more than shame to shame it so?
Landlord of England art thou now, not king:
Thy state of law is bondslave to the law; And thou —

King Richard II   A lunatic lean-witted fool,
Presuming on an ague’s privilege,
Darest with thy frozen admonition
Make pale our cheek, chasing the royal blood
With fury from his native residence.
Now, by my seat’s right royal majesty,
Wert thou not brother to great Edward’s son,
This tongue that runs so roundly in thy head
Should run thy head from thy unreverent shoulders.

John Of Gaunt O, spare me not, my brother Edward’s son,
For that I was his father Edward’s son;
That blood already, like the pelican,
Hast thou tapp’d out and drunkenly caroused:
My brother Gloucester, plain well-meaning soul,
Whom fair befal in heaven ’mongst happy souls!
May be a precedent and witness good
That thou respect’st not spilling Edward’s blood:
Join with the present sickness that I have;
And thy unkindness be like crooked age,
To crop at once a too long wither’d flower.
Live in thy shame, but die not shame with thee!
These words hereafter thy tormentors be!
Convey me to my bed, then to my grave:
Love they to live that love and honour have.

Exit, borne off by his Attendants

King Richard II And let them die that age and sullens have;
For both hast thou, and both become the grave.

Duke Of York I do beseech your majesty, impute his words
To wayward sickliness and age in him:
He loves you, on my life, and holds you dear
As Harry Duke of Hereford, were he here.

King Richard II Right, you say true: as Hereford’s love, so his;
As theirs, so mine; and all be as it is.

Enter Northumberland

Northumberland My liege, old Gaunt commends him to your majesty.

King Richard II What says he?

Northumberland   Nay, nothing; all is said
His tongue is now a stringless instrument;
Words, life and all, old Lancaster hath spent.

Duke Of York Be York the next that must be bankrupt so!
Though death be poor, it ends a mortal woe.

King Richard II The ripest fruit first falls, and so doth he;
His time is spent, our pilgrimage must be.
So much for that. Now for our Irish wars:
We must supplant those rough rug-headed kerns,
Which live like venom where no venom else
But only they have privilege to live.
And for these great affairs do ask some charge,
Towards our assistance we do seize to us
The plate, corn, revenues and moveables,
Whereof our uncle Gaunt did stand possess’d.

Duke Of York How long shall I be patient? ah, how long
Shall tender duty make me suffer wrong?
Not Gloucester’s death, nor Hereford’s banishment
Not Gaunt’s rebukes, nor England’s private wrongs,
Nor the prevention of poor Bolingbroke
About his marriage, nor my own disgrace,
Have ever made me sour my patient cheek,
Or bend one wrinkle on my sovereign’s face.
I am the last of noble Edward’s sons,
Of whom thy father, Prince of Wales, was first:
In war was never lion raged more fierce,
In peace was never gentle lamb more mild,
Than was that young and princely gentleman.
His face thou hast, for even so look’d he,
Accomplish’d with the number of thy hours;
But when he frown’d, it was against the French
And not against his friends; his noble hand
Did will what he did spend and spent not that
Which his triumphant father’s hand had won;
His hands were guilty of no kindred blood,
But bloody with the enemies of his kin.
O Richard! York is too far gone with grief,
Or else he never would compare between.

King Richard II Why, uncle, what’s the matter?

Duke Of York O my liege,
Pardon me, if you please; if n ot, I, pleased
Not to be pardon’d, am content withal.
Seek you to seize and gripe into your hands
The royalties and rights of banish’d Hereford?
Is not Gaunt dead, and doth not Hereford live?
Was not Gaunt just, and is not Harry true?
Did not the one deserve to have an heir?
Is not his heir a well-deserving son?
Take Hereford’s rights away, and take from Time
His charters and his customary rights;
Let not to-morrow then ensue to-day;
Be not thyself; for how art thou a king
But by fair sequence and succession?
Now, afore God — God forbid I say true! —
If you do wrongfully seize Hereford’s rights,
Call in the letters patent that he hath
By his attorneys-general to sue
His livery, and deny his offer’d homage,
You pluck a thousand dangers on your head,
You lose a thousand well-disposed hearts
And prick my tender patience, to those thoughts
Which honour and allegiance cannot think.

King Richard II Think what you will, we seize into our hands
His plate, his goods, his money and his lands.

Duke Of York I’ll not be by the while: my liege, farewell:
What will ensue hereof, there’s none can tell;
But by bad courses may be understood
That their events can never fall out good.

Exit

King Richard II Go, Bushy, to the Earl of Wiltshire straight:
Bid him repair to us to Ely House
To see this business. To-morrow next
We will for Ireland; and ’tis time, I trow:
And we create, in absence of ourself,
Our uncle York lord governor of England;
For he is just and always loved us well.
Come on, our queen: to-morrow must we part;
Be merry, for our time of stay is short

Flourish. Exeunt King Richard II, Queen, Duke Of Aumerle, Bushy, Green, and Bagot

Northumberland Well, lords, the Duke of Lancaster is dead.

Lord Ross And living too; for now his son is duke.

Lord Willoughby Barely in title, not in revenue.

Northumberland Richly in both, if justice had her right.

Lord Ross My heart is great; but it must break with silence,
Ere’t be disburden’d with a liberal tongue.

Northumberland Nay, speak thy mind; and let him ne’er speak more
That speaks thy words again to do thee harm!

Lord Willoughby Tends that thou wouldst speak to the Duke of Hereford?
If it be so, out with it boldly, man;
Quick is mine ear to hear of good towards him.

Lord Ross No good at all that I can do for him;
Unless you call it good to pity him,
Bereft and gelded of his patrimony.

Northumberland Now, afore God, ’tis shame such wrongs are borne
In him, a royal prince, and many moe
Of noble blood in this declining land.
The king is not himself, but basely led
By flatterers; and what they will inform,
Merely in hate, ’gainst any of us all,
That will the king severely prosecute
’Gainst us, our lives, our children, and our heirs.

Lord Ross The commons hath he pill’d with grievous taxes,
And quite lost their hearts: the nobles hath he fined
For ancient quarrels, and quite lost their hearts.

Lord Willoughby And daily new exactions are devised,
As blanks, benevolences, and I wot not what:
But what, o’ God’s name, doth become of this?

Northumberland Wars have not wasted it, for warr’d he hath not,
But basely yielded upon compromise
That which his noble ancestors achieved with blows:
More hath he spent in peace than they in wars.

Lord Ross The Earl of Wiltshire hath the realm in farm.

Lord Willoughby The king’s grown bankrupt, like a broken man.

Northumberland Reproach and dissolution hangeth over him.

Lord Ross He hath not money for these Irish wars,
His burthenous taxations notwithstanding,
But by the robbing of the banish’d duke.

Northumberland His noble kinsman: most degenerate king!
But, lords, we hear this fearful tempest sing,
Yet see no shelter to avoid the storm;
We see the wind sit sore upon our sails,
And yet we strike not, but securely perish.

Lord Ross We see the very wreck that we must suffer;
And unavoided is the danger now,
For suffering so the causes of our wreck.

Northumberland Not so; even through the hollow eyes of death
I spy life peering; but I dare not say
How near the tidings of our comfort is.

Lord Willoughby Nay, let us share thy thoughts, as thou dost ours.

Lord Ross Be confident to speak, Northumberland:
We three are but thyself; and, speaking so,
Thy words are but as thoughts; therefore, be bold.

Northumberland Then thus: I have from Port le Blanc, a bay
In Brittany, received intelligence
That Harry Duke of Hereford, Rainold Lord Cobham,
That late broke from the Duke of Exeter,
His brother, Archbishop late of Canterbury,
Sir Thomas Erpingham, Sir John Ramston,
Sir John Norbery, Sir Robert Waterton and Francis Quoint,
All these well furnish’d by the Duke of Bretagne
With eight tall ships, three thousand men of war,
Are making hither with all due expedience
And shortly mean to touch our northern shore:
Perhaps they had ere this, but that they stay
The first departing of the king for Ireland.
If then we shall shake off our slavish yoke,
Imp out our drooping country’s broken wing,
Redeem from broking pawn the blemish’d crown,
Wipe off the dust that hides our sceptre’s gilt
And make high majesty look like itself,
Away with me in post to Ravenspurgh;
But if you faint, as fearing to do so,
Stay and be secret, and myself will go.

Lord Ross To horse, to horse! urge doubts to them that fear.

Lord Willoughby Hold out my horse, and I will first be there.

Exeunt

Scene II. The palace.

Enter Queen, Bushy, and Bagot

Bushy Madam, your majesty is too much sad:
You promised, when you parted with the king,
To lay aside life-harming heaviness
And entertain a cheerful disposition.

Queen To please the king I did; to please myself
I cannot do it; yet I know no cause
Why I should welcome such a guest as grief,
Save bidding farewell to so sweet a guest
As my sweet Richard: yet again, methinks,
Some unborn sorrow, ripe in fortune’s womb,
Is coming towards me, and my inward soul
With nothing trembles: at some thing it grieves,
More than with parting from my lord the king.

Bushy Each substance of a grief hath twenty shadows,
Which shows like grief itself, but is not so;
For sorrow’s eye, glazed with blinding tears,
Divides one thing entire to many objects;
Like perspectives, which rightly gazed upon
Show nothing but confusion, eyed awry
Distinguish form: so your sweet majesty,
Looking awry upon your lord’s departure,
Find shapes of grief, more than himself, to wail;
Which, look’d on as it is, is nought but shadows
Of what it is not. Then, thrice-gracious queen,
More than your lord’s departure weep not: more’s not seen;
Or if it be, ’tis with false sorrow’s eye,
Which for things true weeps things imaginary.

Queen It may be so; but yet my inward soul
Persuades me it is otherwise: howe’er it be,
I cannot but be sad; so heavy sad
As, though on thinking on no thought I think,
Makes me with heavy nothing faint and shrink.

Bushy ’Tis nothing but conceit, my gracious lady.

Queen ’Tis nothing less: conceit is still derived
From some forefather grief; mine is not so,
For nothing had begot my something grief;
Or something hath the nothing that I grieve:
’Tis in reversion that I do possess;
But what it is, that is not yet known; what
I cannot name; ’tis nameless woe, I wot.

Enter Green

Green God save your majesty! and well met, gentlemen:
I hope the king is not yet shipp’d for Ireland.

Queen Why hopest thou so? ’tis better hope he is;
For his designs crave haste, his haste good hope:
Then wherefore dost thou hope he is not shipp’d?

Green That he, our hope, might have retired his power,
And driven into despair an enemy’s hope,
Who strongly hath set footing in this land:
The banish’d Bolingbroke repeals himself,
And with uplifted arms is safe arrived
At Ravenspurgh.

Queen   Now God in heaven forbid!

Green Ah, madam, ’tis too true: and that is worse,
The Lord Northumberland, his son young Henry Percy,
The Lords of Ross, Beaumond, and Willoughby,
With all their powerful friends, are fled to him.

Bushy Why have you not proclaim’d Northumberland
And all the rest revolted faction traitors?

Green We have: whereupon the Earl of Worcester
Hath broke his staff, resign’d his stewardship,
And all the household servants fled with him
To Bolingbroke.

Queen So, Green, thou art the midwife to my woe,
And Bolingbroke my sorrow’s dismal heir:
Now hath my soul brought forth her prodigy,
And I, a gasping new-deliver’d mother,
Have woe to woe, sorrow to sorrow join’d.

Bushy Despair not, madam.

Queen Who shall hinder me?
I will despair, and be at enmity
With cozening hope: he is a flatterer,
A parasite, a keeper back of death,
Who gently would dissolve the bands of life,
Which false hope lingers in extremity.

Enter Duke Of York

Green Here comes the Duke of York.

Queen With signs of war about his aged neck:
O, full of careful business are his looks!
Uncle, for God’s sake, speak comfortable words.

Duke Of 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, cares and grief.
Your husband, he is gone to save far off,
Whilst others come to make him lose at home:
Here am I left to underprop his land,
Who, weak with age, cannot support myself:
Now comes the sick hour that his surfeit made;
Now shall he try his friends that flatter’d him.

Enter a Servant

Servant My lord, your son was gone before I came.

Duke Of York He was? Why, so! go all which way it will!
The nobles they are fled, the commons they are cold,
And will, I fear, revolt on Hereford’s side.
Sirrah, get thee to Plashy, to my sister Gloucester;
Bid her send me presently 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.

Duke Of York What is’t, knave?

Servant An hour before I came, the duchess died.

Duke Of York God 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 God,
So my untruth had not provoked him to it,
The king had cut off my head with my brother’s.
What, are there no 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.

Exit Servant

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 is my sovereign, whom both my oath
And duty bids defend; the other again
Is my kinsman, whom the king hath wrong’d,
Whom conscience and my kindred bids to right.
Well, somewhat we must do. Come, cousin, I’ll
Dispose of you.
Gentlemen, go, muster up your men,
And meet me presently at Berkeley.
I should to Plashy too;
But time will not permit: all is uneven,
And every thing is left at six and seven.

Exeunt Duke Of York and Queen

Bushy The wind sits fair for news to go to Ireland,
But none returns. For us to levy power
Proportionable to the enemy
Is all unpossible.

Green Besides, our nearness to the king in love
Is near the hate of those love not the king.

Bagot And that’s the wavering commons: for their love
Lies in their purses, and whoso empties them
By so much fills their hearts with deadly hate.

Bushy Wherein the king stands generally condemn’d.

Bagot If judgement lie in them, then so do we,
Because we ever have been near the king.

Green Well, I will for refuge straight to Bristol castle:
The Earl of Wiltshire is already there.

Bushy Thither will I with you; for little office
The hateful commons will perform for us,
Except like curs to tear us all to pieces.
Will you go along with us?

Bagot No; I will to Ireland to his majesty.
Farewell: if heart’s presages be not vain,
We three here art that ne’er shall meet again.

Bushy That’s as York thrives to beat back Bolingbroke.

Green Alas, poor duke! the task he undertakes
Is numbering sands and drinking oceans dry:
Where one on his side fights, thousands will fly.
Farewell at once, for once, for all, and ever.

Bushy Well, we may meet again.

Bagot I fear me, never.

Exeunt

Scene III. Wilds in Gloucestershire.

Enter Henry Bolingbroke and Northumberland, with Forces

Henry Bolingbroke How far is it, my lord, to Berkeley now?

Northumberland Believe me, noble lord,
I am a stranger here in Gloucestershire:
These high wild hills and rough uneven ways
Draws out our miles, and makes them wearisome,
And yet your fair discourse hath been as sugar,
Making the hard way sweet and delectable.
But I bethink me what a weary way
From Ravenspurgh to Cotswold will be found
In Ross and Willoughby, wanting your company,
Which, I protest, hath very much beguiled
The tediousness and process of my travel:
But theirs is sweetened with the hope to have
The present benefit which I possess;
And hope to joy is little less in joy
Than hope enjoy’d: by this the weary lords
Shall make their way seem short, as mine hath done
By sight of what I have, your noble company.

Henry Bolingbroke Of much less value is my company
Than your good words. But who comes here?

Enter Henry Percy

Northumberland It is my son, young Harry Percy,
Sent from my brother Worcester, whencesoever.
Harry, how fares your uncle?

Henry Percy I had thought, my lord, to have learn’d his health of you.

Northumberland Why, is he not with the queen?

Henry Percy No, my good Lord; he hath forsook the court,
Broken his staff of office and dispersed
The household of the king.

Northumberland What was his reason?
He was not so resolved when last we spake together.

Henry Percy Because your lordship was proclaimed traitor.
But he, my lord, is gone to Ravenspurgh,
To offer service to the Duke of Hereford,
And sent me over by Berkeley, to discover
What power the Duke of York had levied there;
Then with directions to repair to Ravenspurgh.

Northumberland Have you forgot the Duke of Hereford, boy?

Henry Percy No, my good lord, for that is not forgot
Which ne’er I did remember: to my knowledge,
I never in my life did look on him.

Northumberland Then learn to know him now; this is the duke.

Henry Percy My gracious lord, I tender you my service,
Such as it is, being tender, raw and young:
Which elder days shall ripen and confirm
To more approved service and desert.

Henry Bolingbroke I thank thee, gentle Percy; and be sure
I count myself in nothing else so happy
As in a soul remembering my good friends;
And, as my fortune ripens with thy love,
It shall be still thy true love’s recompense:
My heart this covenant makes, my hand thus seals it.

Northumberland How far is it to Berkeley? and what stir
Keeps good old York there with his men of war?

Henry Percy There stands the castle, by yon tuft of trees,
Mann’d with three hundred men, as I have heard;
And in it are the Lords of York, Berkeley, and Seymour;
None else of name and noble estimate.

Enter Lord Ross and Lord Willoughby

Northumberland Here come the Lords of Ross and Willoughby,
Bloody with spurring, fiery-red with haste.

Henry Bolingbroke Welcome, my lords. I wot your love pursues
A banish’d traitor: all my treasury
Is yet but unfelt thanks, which more enrich’d
Shall be your love and labour’s recompense.

Lord Ross Your presence makes us rich, most noble lord.

Lord Willoughby And far surmounts our labour to attain it.

Henry Bolingbroke Evermore thanks, the exchequer of the poor;
Which, till my infant fortune comes to years,
Stands for my bounty. But who comes here?

Enter Lord Berkeley

Northumberland It is my Lord of Berkeley, as I guess.

Lord Berkeley My Lord of Hereford, my message is to you.

Henry Bolingbroke My lord, my answer is — to 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.

Lord Berkeley Mistake me not, my lord; ’tis not my meaning
To raze one title of your honour out:
To you, my lord, I come, what lord you will,
From the most gracious regent of this land,
The Duke of York, to know what pricks you on
To take advantage of the absent time
And fright our native peace with self-born arms.

Enter Duke Of York attended

Henry Bolingbroke I shall not need transport my words by you;
Here comes his grace in person. My noble uncle!

Kneels

Duke Of York Show me thy humble heart, and not thy knee,
Whose duty is deceiveable and false.

Henry Bolingbroke My gracious uncle  —

Duke Of 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
Dared once to touch a dust of England’s ground?
But then more ‘why?’ why have they dared to march
So many miles upon her peaceful bosom,
Frighting her pale-faced villages with war
And ostentation of despised arms?
Comest thou because the anointed king is hence?
Why, foolish boy, the king is left behind,
And 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, that young Mars of men,
From forth the ranks of many thousand French,
O, then how quickly should this arm of mine.
Now prisoner to the palsy, chastise thee
And minister correction to thy fault!

Henry Bolingbroke My gracious uncle, let me know my fault:
On what condition stands it and wherein?

Duke Of York Even in condition of the worst degree,
In gross rebellion and detested treason:
Thou art a banish’d man, and here art come
Before the expiration of thy time,
In braving arms against thy sovereign.

Henry Bolingbroke As I was banish’d, 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 indifferent eye:
You are my father, for methinks in you
I see old Gaunt alive; O, then, my father,
Will you permit that I shall stand condemn’d
A wandering vagabond; my rights and royalties
Pluck’d from my arms perforce and given away
To upstart unthrifts? Wherefore was I born?
If that my cousin king be King of England,
It must be granted I am Duke of Lancaster.
You have a son, Aumerle, my noble cousin;
Had you first died, and he been thus trod down,
He should have found his uncle Gaunt a father,
To rouse his wrongs and chase them to the bay.
I am denied to sue my livery here,
And yet my letters-patents give me leave:
My father’s goods are all distrain’d and sold,
And these and all are all amiss employ’d.
What would you have me do? I am a subject,
And I challenge law: attorneys are denied me;
And therefore, personally I lay my claim
To my inheritance of free descent.

Northumberland The noble duke hath been too much abused.

Lord Ross It stands your grace upon to do him right.

Lord Willoughby Base men by his endowments are made great.

Duke Of York My lords of England, let me tell you this:
I have had feeling of my cousin’s wrongs
And laboured all I could to do him right;
But in this kind to come, in braving arms,
Be his own carver and cut out his way,
To find out right with wrong, it may not be;
And you that do abet him in this kind
Cherish rebellion and are rebels all.

Northumberland The noble duke hath sworn his coming is
But for his own; and for the right of that
We all have strongly sworn to give him aid;
And let him ne’er see joy that breaks that oath!

Duke Of York Well, well, I see the issue of these arms:
I cannot mend it, I must needs confess,
Because my power is weak and all ill left:
But if I could, by Him that gave me life,
I would attach you all and make you stoop
Unto the sovereign mercy of the king;
But since I cannot, be it known to you
I do remain as neuter. So, fare you well;
Unless you please to enter in the castle
And there repose you for this night.

Henry Bolingbroke An offer, uncle, that we will accept:
But we must win your grace to go with us
To Bristol castle, which they say is held
By Bushy, Bagot and their complices,
The caterpillars of the commonwealth,
Which I have sworn to weed and pluck away.

Duke Of York It may be I will go with you: but yet I’ll pause;
For I am loath to break our country’s laws.
Nor friends nor foes, to me welcome you are:
Things past redress are now with me past care.

Exeunt

Scene IV. A camp in Wales.

Enter Earl Of Salisbury and a Welsh Captain

Captain My lord of Salisbury, we have stay’d ten days,
And hardly kept our countrymen together,
And yet we hear no tidings from the king;
Therefore we will disperse ourselves: farewell.

Earl Of Salisbury Stay yet another day, thou trusty Welshman:
The king reposeth all his confidence in thee.

Captain ’Tis thought the king is dead; we will not stay.
The bay-trees in our country are all wither’d
And meteors fright the fixed stars of heaven;
The pale-faced moon looks bloody on the earth
And lean-look’d prophets whisper fearful change;
Rich men look sad and ruffians dance and leap,
The one in fear to lose what they enjoy,
The other to enjoy by rage and war:
These signs forerun the death or fall of kings.
Farewell: our countrymen are gone and fled,
As well assured Richard their king is dead.

Exit

Earl Of Salisbury Ah, Richard, with the eyes of heavy mind
I see thy glory like a shooting star
Fall to the base earth from the firmament.
Thy sun sets weeping in the lowly west,
Witnessing storms to come, woe and unrest:
Thy friends are fled to wait upon thy foes,
And crossly to thy good all fortune goes.

Exit

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Last updated Saturday, April 26, 2014 at 22:36