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War. Prove it, Henry, and thou shalt be king.
York. ’T was by rebellion against his king. K. Hen. I know not what to say : my title 's weak.
[ Aside. Tell me, may not a king adopt an heir ?
York. What then ?
York. He rose against him, being his sovereign,
War. Suppose, my lords, he did it unconstrain’d, Think
you, 't were prejudicial to his crown?
K. Hen. Art thou against us, duke of Exeter ?
North. Plantagenet, for all the claim thou lay'st,
War. Depos'd he shall be in despite of all.
Clif. King Henry, be thy title right or wrong,
K. Hen. O Clifford, how thy words revive my heart !
York. Henry of Lancaster, resign my crown.-
War. Do right unto this princely duke of York,
[He stamps, and the Soldiers show themselves.
2 thy: in f. e. Vol. V.-16
K. Hen. My lord of Warwick, hear me but one word. Let me for this my life-time reign as king.
York. Confirm the crown to me, and to mine heirs, And thou shalt reign in quiet while thou liv'st.
K. Hen. I am content: Richard Plantagenet,
Clif. What wrong is this unto the prince your son ?
West. Farewell, faint-hearted and degenerate king, In whose cold blood no spark of honour bides.
North. Be thou a prey unto the house of York, And die in bands for this unmanly deed !
Clif. In dreadful war may'st thou be overcome, Or live in peace, abandon'd and despis'd !
(Exeúnt NORTHUMBERLAND, CLIFFORD, and
WESTMORELAND. War. Turn this way, Henry, and regard them not. Exe. They seek revenge, and therefore will not yield. K. Hen. Ah,
Why should you sigh, my lord ? K. Hen. Not for myself, lord Warwick, but my son, Whom I unnaturally shall disinherit. But be it as it may, I here entail The crown to thee, and to thine heirs for ever ; (To YORK. Conditionally, that here thou take an oath To cease this civil war, and whilst I live, To honour me as thy king and sovereign; And neither by treason, nor hostility, To seek to put me down and reign thyself. York. This oath I willingly take, and will perform.
[Coming from the Throne. War. Long live king Henry !-Plantagenet, em
brace him. K. Hen. And long live thou, and these thy forward
sons ! York. Now York and Lancaster are reconcil'd. Exe. Accurs'd be he, that seeks to make them foes !
[Sennet. The Lords come forward. York. Farewell, my gracious lord : I'll to my castle.
War. And I'll keep London with my soldiers.
MONTAGUE, Soldiers, and Attendants.
anger; I'll steal away. K. Hen. Exeter, so will I.
(Going Q. Mar. Nay, go not from me; I will follow thee. K. Hen. Be patient, gentle queen, and I will stay.
Q. Mar. Who can be patient in such extremes ? Ah, wretched man! would I had died a maid, And never seen thee, never borne thee son, Seeing thou hast prov’d so unnatural a father! Hath he deserv'd to lose his birthright thus ? Hadst thou but lov'd him half so well as , Or felt that pain which I did for him once, Or nourish'd him, as I did with my blood, Thou wouldst have left thy dearest heart-blood there, Rather than have made that savage duke thine heir, And disinherited thine only son.
Prince. Father, you cannot disinherit me. If you be king, why should not I succeed !
K. Hen. Pardon me, Margaret ;—pardon me, sweet
The earl of Warwick, and the duke, enforc'd me.
The soldiers should have toss'd me on their pikes,
K. Hen. Stay, gentle Margaret, and hear me speak.
gone. K. Hen. Gentle son Edward, thou wilt stay with me? Q. Mar. Ay, to be murder'd by his enemies.
Prince. When I return with victory from the field, I'll see your grace; till then, I 'll follow her. Q. Mar. Come, son ; away! we may not linger thus.
[Exeunt Queen MARGARET, and the Prince. K. Hen. Poor queen ! how love to me, and to her son, Hath made her break out into terms of rage. Reveng'd may she be on that hateful duke, Whose haughty spirit, winged with desire, Will cost my crown, and like an empty eagle Tire' on the flesh of me, and of my son ! The loss of those three lords torments my heart : I'll write unto them, and entreat them fair.Come, cousin ; you shall be the messenger.
Exe. And I, I hope, shall reconcile them all. [Exeunt. SCENE II.-A Room in Sandal Castle, near Wakefield.
Enter EDWARD, RICHARD, and MONTAGUE. Rich. Brother, though I be youngest, give me leave. Edw. No; I can better play the orator. Mont. But I have reasons strong and forcible.
Edw. No quarrel, but a slight contention.
Rich. About that which concerns your grace, and us ; The crown of England, father, which is yours.
York. Mine, boy ? not till king Henry be dead. Rich. Your right depends not on his life, or death.
Edw. Now you are heir, therefore enjoy it now: By giving the house of Lancaster leave to breathe, It will outrun you, father, in the end.
York. I took an oath that he should quietly reign.
Edw. But for a kingdom any oath may be broken: I would break a thousand oaths to reign one year.
Rich. No; God forbid, your grace should be forsworn.
Rich. An oath is of no moment, being not took
York. Richard, enough : I will be king, or die.-
Enter a Messenger. But, stay.-What news ? Why com’st thou in such post?
Mess. The queen, with all the northern earls and lords, Intends here to besiege you in your castle.