Richard II

Act 2

SCENE I. London. An Apartment in Ely House.

[GAUNT on a couch; the DUKE OF YORK and Others standing by him.]

GAUNT. Will the King come, that I may breathe my last In wholesome counsel to his unstaid youth?

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

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.

YORK. No; it is stopp'd with other flattering sounds, As praises of his state: then there 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 buzz'd 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.

GAUNT. Methinks I am a prophet new inspir'd, 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 leas'd 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.


YORK. The King is come: deal mildly with his youth; For young hot colts, being rag'd, do rage the more.

QUEEN. How fares our noble uncle, Lancaster?

KING RICHARD. What comfort, man? How is't with aged Gaunt?

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. Can sick men play so nicely with their names?

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. Should dying men flatter with those that live?

GAUNT. No, no; men living flatter those that die.

KING RICHARD. Thou, now a-dying, sayest thou flatterest me.

GAUNT. O, no! thou diest, though I the sicker be.

KING RICHARD. I am in health, I breathe, and see thee ill.

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, Committ'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--

KING RICHARD. And thou a lunatic lean-witted fool, Presuming on an ague's privilege, Dar'st 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.

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 carous'd: My brother Gloucester, plain well-meaning soul,-- Whom fair befall 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 withered 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, bourne out by his Attendants.]

KING RICHARD. And let them die that age and sullens have; For both hast thou, and both become the grave.

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


NORTHUMBERLAND. My liege, old Gaunt commends him to your Majesty.

KING RICHARD. What says he?

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

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

KING RICHARD. 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, coin, revenues, and moveables, Whereof our uncle Gaunt did stand possess'd.

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, Nor 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 rag'd 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 win what he did spend, and spent not that Which his triumphant father's hand had won: His hands were guilty of no kindred's 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. Why, uncle, what's the matter?

YORK. O! my liege. Pardon me, if you please; if not, I, pleas'd 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-patents 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. Think what you will: we seize into our hands His plate, his goods, his money, and his lands.

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.


KING RICHARD. 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 lov'd us well. Come on, our queen: to-morrow must we part; Be merry, for our time of stay is short.


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

ROSS. And living too; for now his son is Duke.

WILLOUGHBY. Barely in title, not in revenues.

NORTHUMBERLAND. Richly in both, if justice had her right.

ROSS. My heart is great; but it must break with silence, Ere't be disburdened 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!

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.

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.

ROSS. The commons hath he pill'd with grievous taxes, And quite lost their hearts: the nobles hath he fin'd For ancient quarrels and quite lost their hearts.

WILLOUGHBY. And daily new exactions are devis'd; As blanks, benevolences, and I wot not what: But what, o' God's name, doth become of this?

NORTHUMBERLAND. Wars hath not wasted it, for warr'd he hath not, But basely yielded upon compromise That which his ancestors achiev'd with blows. More hath he spent in peace than they in wars.

ROSS. The Earl of Wiltshire hath the realm in farm.

WILLOUGHBY. The King's grown bankrupt like a broken man.

NORTHUMBERLAND. Reproach and dissolution hangeth over him.

ROSS. He hath not money for these Irish wars, His burdenous 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 seek no shelter to avoid the storm; We see the wind sit sore upon our sails, And yet we strike not, but securely perish.

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

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.

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

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 Le Port Blanc, a bay In Brittany, receiv'd 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 Britaine, 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.

ROSS. To horse, to horse! Urge doubts to them that fear.

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


SCENE II. The Same. A Room in the Castle.

[Enter QUEEN, BUSHY, and BAGOT.]

BUSHY. Madam, your Majesty is too much sad. You promis'd, 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 gaz'd upon, Show nothing but confusion; ey'd 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 s,ad As, though in 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 deriv'd From some forefather grief; mine is not so, For nothing hath 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 hop'st 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 retir'd 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 arriv'd 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 broken 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 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.

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.

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.

YORK. What is't, knave?

SERVANT. An hour before I came the duchess died.

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 provok'd 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 disorderly thrust into my hands, Never believe me. Both are my kinsmen: T'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 Castle. I should to Plashy too: But time will not permit. All is uneven, And everything is left at six and seven.

[Exeunt 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 is 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 judgment 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 Will the hateful commons 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 part 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 numb'ring 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.


SCENE III. The Wolds in Gloucestershire.


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 beguil'd The tediousness and process of my travel. But theirs is sweeten'd 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.

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


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

PERCY. I had thought, my lord, to have learn'd his health of you.

NORTHUMBERLAND. Why, is he not with the Queen?

PERCY. No, my good lord; he hath forsook the court, Broken his staff of office, and dispers'd The household of the King.

NORTHUMBERLAND. What was his reason? He was not so resolv'd when last we spake together.

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?

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.

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.

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?

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 Ross and WILLOUGHBY.]

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

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.

ROSS. Your presence makes us rich, most noble lord.

WILLOUGHBY. And far surmounts our labour to attain it.

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


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

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

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.

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-borne arms.

[Enter YORK, attended.]

BOLINGBROKE. I shall not need transport my words by you; Here comes his Grace in person.

My noble uncle!


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 then more 'why?' why have they dar'd to march So many miles upon her peaceful bosom, Frighting her pale-fac'd villages with war And ostentation of despised arms? Com'st 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 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 the And minister correction to thy fault!

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

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.

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 in 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 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 abus'd.

ROSS. It stands your Grace upon to do him right.

WILLOUGHBY. Base men by his endowments are made great.

YORK. My lords of England, let me tell you this: I have had feeling of my cousin's wrongs, And labour'd 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 never see joy that breaks that oath!

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 unto 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.

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.

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.


SCENE IV. A camp in Wales.


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.

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-fac'd 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 assur'd Richard their king is dead.


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. The 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.