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Aum. Yea, at all points; and longs to enter in.
Mar. The duke of Norfolk, sprightfully and
Stays but the summons of the appellant's trumpet.
Aum. Why then, the champions are prepar'd and
For nothing but his majesty's approach.
Flourish of trumpets. Enter KING RICHARD, who takes his seat on his throne; GAUNT, and several Noblemen, who take their places. A trumpet is sounded, and answered by another trumpet within. Then enter NORFOLK, in armour, preceded by a Herald.
K. Rich. Marshal, demand of yonder champion
The cause of his arrival here in arms :
Ask him his name; and orderly proceed
To swear him in the justice of his cause.
Mar. In God's name, and the king's, say who
And why thou com'st, thus knightly clad in arms:
Against what man thou com'st, and what thy quarrel:
Speak truly, on thy knighthood, and thy oath;
And so defend thee heaven, and thy valour!
K. Rich. Marshal, ask yonder knight in arms,
Both who he is, and why he cometh hither
Thus plated in habiliments of war;
And formally according to our law
Depose him in the justice of his cause.
Mar. What is thy name? and wherefore com'st
Before King Richard, in his royal lists?
Against whom comest thou? and what's thy quarrel?
Speak like a true knight, so defend thee heaven!
K. Rich. We will descend, and fold him in our
Cousin of Hereford, as thy cause is right,
So be thy fortune in this royal fight!
Farewell, my blood; which if to-day thou shed,
Lament we may, but not revenge thee dead.
Boling. O, let no noble eye profane a tear
For me, if I be gor'd with Mowbray's spear;
As confident, as is the falcon's flight
Against a bird, do I with Mowbray fight.
My loving lord, [to Lord Marshal.] I take my leave
Of you, my noble cousin, lord Aumerle : —
Not sick, although I have to do with death;
But lusty, young, and cheerly drawing breath.
Lo, as at English feasts, so I regreet
The daintiest last, to make the end most sweet :
O thou, the earthly author of my blood,
Nor. My name is Thomas Mowbray, duke of That it may enter Mowbray's waxen coat,
And furbish new the name of John of Gaunt,
Even in the lusty 'haviour of his son.
Gaunt. Heaven in thy good cause make thee
Who hither come engaged by my oath,
(Which, heaven defend, a knight should violate!)
Both to defend my loyalty and truth,
To God, my king, and my succeeding issue,
Against the duke of Hereford that appeals me;
And, by the grace of God, and this mine arm,
To prove him, in defending of myself,
A traitor to my God, my king, and me
And, as I truly fight, defend me heaven!
[He takes his seat.
Trumpet sounds. Enter BOLINGBROKE, in armour :
preceded by a Herald.
Boling. Harry of Hereford, Lancaster, and Derby,
Am I; who ready here do stand in arms,
To prove, by heaven's grace, and my body's valour,
In lists, on Thomas Mowbray, duke of Norfolk,
That he's a traitor, foul and dangerous,
To God of heaven, king Richard, and to me;
And, as I truly fight, defend me heaven!
Mar. On pain of death, no person be so bold,
Or daring-hardy, as to touch the lists;
Except the marshal, and such officers
Appointed to direct these fair designs.
Boling. Lord marshal, let me kiss my sovereign's
And bow my knee before his majesty :
For Mowbray, and myself, are like two men
That vow a long and weary pilgrimage;
Then let us take a ceremonious leave,
And loving farewell, of our several friends.
Mar. The appellant in all duty greets your high-
And craves to kiss your hand, and take his leave
Whose youthful spirit, in me regenerate,
Doth with a two-fold vigour lift me up
To reach at victory above my head,
Add proof unto mine armour with thy prayers;
And with thy blessings steel my lance's point,
Be swift like lightning in the execution;
And let thy blows, doubly redoubled,
Fall like amazing thunder on the casque
Of thy adverse pernicious enemy:
Rouse up thy youthful blood, be valiant and live.
Boling. Mine innocency, and Saint George to
[He takes his sent.
Nor. [Rising.] However heaven, or fortune, cast
There lives, or dies, true to king Richard's throne,
A loyal, just, and upright gentleman :
Never did captive with a freer heart
Cast off his chains of bondage, and embrace
His golden uncontroll'd enfranchisement,
More than my dancing soul doth celebrate
This feast of battle with mine adversary.
Most mighty liege, and my companion peers,
Take from my mouth the wish of happy years:
As gentle and as jocund, as to jest,
Go I to fight; Truth hath a quiet breast.
K. Rich. Farewell, my lord: securely I espy
Virtue with valour couched in thine eye.
Order the trial, marshal, and begin.
[The KING and the Lords return to their seats Mar. Harry of Hereford, Lancaster, and Derby, Receive thy lance; and God defend the right!
Boling. [Rising.] Strong as a tower in hope, I
Mar. Go bear this lance [to an Officer.] to
Thomas, duke of Norfolk.
1 Her. Harry of Hereford, Lancaster, and Derby,
Stands here for God, his sovereign, and himself,
On pain to be found false and recreant,
To prove the duke of Norfolk, Thomas Mowbray,
A traitor to his God, his king, and him,
And dares him to set forward to the fight.
2 Her. Here standeth Thomas Mowbray, duke of
On pain to be found false and recreant,
Both to defend himself, and to approve
Henry of Hereford, Lancaster, and Derby,
To Gol, his sovereign, and to him, disloyal;
Courageously, and with a free desire,
Attending but the signal to begin.
Mar. Sound, trumpets; and set forward, com[A charge sounded. Stay, the king hath thrown his warder down. K. Rich. Let them lay by their helmets and their
And both return back to their chairs again:
Withdraw with us: and let the trumpets sound,
While we return these dukes what we decree.
[A long flourish.
[To the Combatants.
And list, what with our council we have done.
For that our kingdom's earth should not be soil'd
With that dear blood which it hath fostered;
And for our eyes do hate the dire aspéct
Of civil wounds plough'd up with neighbours' swords;
[And for we think the eagle-winged pride
Of sky-aspiring and ambitious thoughts,
With rival-hating envy, set you on
To wake our peace, which in our country's cradle
Draws the sweet infant breath of gentle sleep ;]
Which so rous'd up with boisterous untun'd drums,
With harsh resounding trumpets' dreadful bray,
And grating shock of wrathful iron arms,
Might from our quiet confines fright fair peace,
And make us wade even in our kindred's blood; -
Therefore, we banish you our territories:
You, cousin Hereford, upon pain of death,
Till twice five summers have enrich'd our fields,
Shall not regreet our fair dominions,
But tread the stranger paths of banishment.
Boling. Your will be done: This must my comfort be, That sun, that warms you here, shall shine on me; And those his golden beams, to you here lent, Shall point on me, and gild my banishment.
K. Rich. Norfolk, for thee remains a heavier doom, Which I with some unwillingness pronounce : The fly-slow hours shall not determinate The dateless limit of thy dear exíle ; · The hopeless word of-never to return Breathe I against thee, upon pain of life.
Nor. A heavy sentence, my most sovereign liege,
And all unlook'd for from your highness' mouth :
A dearer merit, not so deep a maim
As to be cast forth in the common air,
Have I deserved at your highness' hand.
The language I have learn'd these forty years,
My native English, now I must forego:
And now my tongue's use is to me no more,
Than an unstringed viol, or a harp;
Or like a cunning instrument cas'd up,
Or, being open, put into his hands
That knows no touch to tune the harmony.
Within my mouth you have engaol'd my tongue,
Doubly portcullis'd, with my teeth, and lips;
And dull, unfeeling, barren ignorance
Is made my gaoler to attend on me.
I am too old to fawn upon a nurse,
Too far in years to be a pupil now;
What is thy sentence then, but speechless death,
Which robs my tongue from breathing native breath?
K. Rich. It boots thee not to be compassionate;
After our sentence plaining comes too late.
Nor. Then thus I turn me from my country's light, To dwell in solemn shades of endless night.
K. Rich. Return again, and take an oath with thee.
Lay on our royal sword your banish'd hands;
Swear by the duty that you owe to heaven,
(Our part therein we banish with yourselves,)
To keep the oath that we administer : —
You never shall (so help you truth and heaven ')
Embrace each other's love in banishment;
Nor never look upon each other's face;
Nor never write, regreet, nor reconcile
This lowering tempest of your home-bred hate;
Nor never by advised purpose meet,
To plot, contrive, or complot any ill,
'Gainst us, our state, our subjects, or our land.
Boling. I swear.
Ner. And I, to keep all this.
Boling. Norfolk, so far as to mine enemy;
By this time, had the king permitted us,
One of our souls had wander'd in the air,
Banish'd this frail sepulchre of our flesh,
As now our flesh is banish'd from this land:
Confess thy treasons, ere thou fly the realm;
Since thou hast far to go, bear not along
The clogging burden of a guilty soul.
Nor. No, Bolingbroke; if ever I were traitor,
My name be blotted from the book of life,
And I from heaven banish'd, as from hence!
But what thou art, heaven, thou, and I do know;
And all too soon, I fear, the king shall rue.
Farewell, my liege :
Now no way can I stray,
Save back to England, all the world's my way.
K. Rich. Uncle, even in the glasses of thine eyes I see thy grieved heart; thy sad aspect Hath from the number of his banish'd years Pluck'd four away ; — Six frozen winters spent, Return [to BOLING.] with welcome home from ba
Boling. How long a time lies in one little word! Four lagging winters, and four wanton springs, End in a word; Such is the breath of kings.
Gaunt. I thank my liege, that, in regard of me, He shortens four years of my son's exíle : But little vantage shall I reap thereby ; For, ere the six years, that he hath to spend, Can change their moons, and bring their times about, My oil-dried lamp, and time-bewasted light, Shall be extinct with age, and endless night; My inch of taper will be burnt and done, And blindfold death not let me see my son.
K. Rich. Why, uncle, thou hast many years to live. Gaunt. But not a minute, king, that thou canst give:
Shorten my days thou canst with sullen sorrow,
And pluck nights from me, but not lend a morrow:
Thou canst help time to furrow me with age,
But stop no wrinkle in his pilgrimage;
Thy word is current with him for my death:
But, dead, thy kingdom cannot buy my breath.
K. Rich. Thy son is banish'd upon good advice,
Whereto thy tongue a party-verdict gave;
Why at our justice seem'st thou then to lower?
Gaunt. Things sweet to taste, prove in digestion
Gaunt. The sullen passage of thy weary steps Esteem a foil, wherein thou art to set The precious jewel of thy home-return.
Boling. Nay, rather, every tedious stride I make Will but remember me, what a deal of world I wander from the jewels that I love. Must I not serve a long apprenticehood To foreign passages; and in the end, Having my freedom, boast of nothing else But that I was a journeyman to grief?
Gaunt. All places that the eye of heaven visits,
Are to a wise man ports and happy havens :
Teach thy necessity to reason thus ;
There is no virtue like necessity.
Think not, the king did banish thee;
But thou the king: Woe doth the heavier sit,
Where it perceives it is but faintly borne.
I sent thee forth to purchase honour,
And not- the king exíl'd thee: or suppose,
Devouring pestilence hangs in our air,
And thou art flying to a fresher clime.
Look, what thy soul holds dear, imagine it
To lie that way thou go'st, not whence thou
Gaunt. Come, come, my son, I'll bring thee on thy way: Had I thy youth and cause, would not stay. Boling. Then, England's ground, farewell; sweet soil, adieu;
My mother, and my nurse, that bears me yet!
Where'er I wander, boast of this I can,
Though banish'd, yet a trueborn Englishman.
Suppose the singing birds, musicians;
The grass whereon thou tread'st, the presence
The flowers, fair ladies; and thy steps, no more
Than a delightful measure, or a dance:
For gnarling sorrow hath less power to bite
The man that mocks at it, and sets it light.
Boling. O, who can hold a fire in his hand,
By thinking on the frosty Caucasus ?
Or cloy the hungry edge of appetite,
By bare imagination of a feast?
Or wallow naked in December snow,
By thinking on fantastick summer's heat?
O, no! the apprehension of the good,
Gives but the greater feeling to the worse:
Fell sorrow's tooth doth never rankle more,
Than when it bites, but lanceth not the sore.
Which then blew bitterly against our faces,
Awak'd the sleeping rheum; and so, by chance,
Did grace our hollow parting with a tear.
K. Rich. What said our cousin, when you parted
And, for my heart disdained that my tongue
Should so profane the word, that taught me craft
To counterfeit oppression of such grief,
That words seem'd buried in my sorrow's grave.
Marry, would the word farewell have lengthen'd
And added years to his short banishment,
He should have had a volume of farewells;
But, since it would not, he had none of me.
K. Rich. He is our cousin, cousin; but 'tis doubt,
When time shall call him home from banishment,
Whether our kinsman come to see his friends.
Ourself, and Bushy, Bagot here, and Green,
Observ'd his courtship to the common people:
How he did seem to dive into their hearts,
With humble and familiar courtesy ;
What reverence he did throw away on slaves;
Wooing poor craftsmen, with the craft of smiles,
And patient underbearing of his fortune,
As 'twere, to banish their affects with him.
Off goes his bonnet to an oyster-wench;
A brace of draymen bid God speed him well,
And had the tribute of his supple knee,
With-Thanks, my countrymen, my loving friends;—
As were our England in reversion his,
And he our subjects' next degree in hope.
Green. Well, he's gone; and with him go these thoughts.
Now for the rebels, which stand out in Ireland; Expedient manage must be made, my liege; Ere further leisure yield them further means, For their advantage, and your highness' loss.
K. Rich. We will ourself in person to this war. And, for our coffers- with too great a court, And liberal largess, -are grown somewhat light, We are enforc'd to farm our royal realm; The revenue whereof shall furnish us
For our affairs in hand: If that come short,
Our substitutes at home shall have blank charters;
SCENE I.- London. A Room 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 unstaied 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 musick 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 found
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 lackest, and that breath wilt thou
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
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,
K. Rich. Where lies he?
Bushy. At Ely-house.
K. Rich. Now put it, heaven, in his physician's mind,
To help him to his grave immediately!
The lining of his coffers shall make coats
To deck our soldiers for these Irish wars. -
Come, gentlemen, let's all go visit him :
Pray God, we may make haste, and come too late!
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:
O, would the scandal vanish with my life,
How happy then were my ensuing death!
Enter KING RICHARD and QUEEN; AUMERLE, BUSHY, GREEN, BAGOT, Ross, and WILLOUGHBY York. The king is come: deal mildly with his youth;
For young hot colts, being rag'd, do rage the
Queen. How fares our noble uncle, Lancaster? K. Rich. 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. K. Rich. Can sick men play so nicely with the 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,
ter'st me. Gaunt. Oh! no; thou diest, though I the sicker be.
K. Rich. I am in health, I breathe, and see thee ill.
Gaunt. Now, He that made me, knows I see
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;
a lunatick 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 unreverend shoulders.
Gaunt. O, spare me not, my brother Edward's
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 Gloster, 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 out by his Attendants.
K. Rich. And let them die, that age and sullens
For both hast thou, and both become the grave.
York. '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.
K. Rich. Right; you say true: as Hereford's love, so his :
As theirs, so mine; and all be as it is.
North. My liege, old Gaunt commends him to your majesty.
K. Rich. What says he now?
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
Though death be poor it ends a mortal woe.
K. Rich. 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, hath 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 Gloster'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 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.
K. Rich. Why, uncle, what's the matter?
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?