« ZurückWeiter »
Mowb. O, let my Sovereign turn away his face, And bid his ears a little while be deaf,
Till I have told this Slander of his blood,
How God and good men hate fo foul a liar.
K. Rich. Mowbray, impartial are our eyes and ears.
Were he our brother, nay, our Kingdom's heir,
As he is but our father's brother's fon;
Now by my Scepter's awe, I make a vow,
Such neighbour-nearness to our facred blood
Should nothing priv'lege him, nor partialize
Th' unftooping firmnefs of my upright foul.
He is our Subject, Mowbray, fo art thou;
Free speech, and fearlefs, I to thee allow.
Mowb. Then, Bolingbroke, as low as to thy heart,
Through the falfe paffage of thy throat, thou lieft!
Three parts of that Receipt I had for Calais,
Disburst I to his Highnefs' foldiers;
The other part referv'd I by confent,
For that my sovereign Liege was in my debt;
Upon remainder of a dear account,
Since last I went to France to fetch his Queen.
Now, fwallow down that Lie.-For Gloucefter's death,
I flew him, not; but, to mine own difgrace,
Neglected my fworn duty in that cafe.
For you, my noble lord of Lancaster,
The honourable father to my foe,
Once did I lay an ambush for your life,
A trespass that doth vex my grieved foul;
But ere I laft receiv'd the Sacrament,
I did confefs it, and exactly begg'd
Your Grace's pardon; and, I hope, I had it.
This is my fault; as for the reft appeal'd,
It iffues from the rancor of a villain,
A recreant and most degen'rate traitor:
Which in my felf I boldly will defend,
And interchangeably hurle down my gage.
Upon this overweening traitor's foot;
To prove my felf a loyal gentleman,
Even in the beft blood chamber'd in his bofom.
In hafte whereof, moft heartily I pray
Your Highness to affign our tryal-day.
K. Rich. Wrath-kindled Gentlemen, be rul'd by me; Let's purge this Choler without letting blood: 3 This we prescribe, though no physician; Deep malice makes too deep incifion : Forget, forgive, conclude and be agreed; Our Doctors fay, this is no time to bleed. Good Uncle, let this end where it begun; We'll calm the Duke of Norfolk, you your Son. Gaunt. To be a make-peace fhall become my age; Throw down, my Son, the Duke of Norfolk's gage. K. Rich. And, Norfolk, throw down his. Gaunt. When, Harry, when?
Obedience bids, I fhould not bid again.
K. Rich. Norfolk, throw down, we bid; there is no boot.
Mowb. My felf I throw, dread Sovereign, at thy foot.
My life thou fhalt command, but not my Shame;
The one my duty owes; but my fair Name,
(Defpight of death, That lives upon my Grave,)
To dark difhonour's use thou fhalt not have.
I am difgrac'd, impeach'd, and baffled here,
Pierc'd to the foul with flander's venom'd spear:
The which no balme can cure, but his heart-blood
Which breath'd this poifon.
3 This we preferibe, though no phyfician, &c. ] I must make one remark, in general, on the Rhymes throughout this whole play; they are so much inferior to the reft of the writing, that they appear to me of a different hand. What confirms this, is, that the context does every where exactly (and frequently much better) connect without the inferted rhymes, except in a very few places; and juft there too, the rhyming verfes are of a much better, taste than all the others, which rather strengthens my conjecture.
K. Rich. Rage must be withstood:
Give me his gage: Lions make Leopards tame. Mowb. Yea, but not change their spots: take but my shame,
And I refign my gage. My dear, dear lord,
The pureft treasure mortal times afford,
Is fpotlefs Reputation; That away,
Men are but gilded loam, or painted clay.
A jewel in a ten-times-barr'd-up cheft,
Is a bold fpirit in a loyal breast.
Mine Honour is my life, both grow in one;
Take honour from me, and my life is done.
Then, dear my Liege, mine honour let me try;
In That I live, and for That will I die.
K. Rich. Coufin, throw down your gage; do you begin.
Boling. Oh, heav'n defend my foul from fuch foul fin! Shall I feem creft-fall'n in my father's fight, • Or with pale beggar face impeach my height, Before this out-dar'd Daftard? Ere my tongue Shall wound my Honour with fuch feeble wrong, Or found fo base a parle, my teeth fhall tear The flavish motive of recanting fear, And spit it bleeding, in his high difgrace, Where fhame doth harbour, ev'n in Mowbray's face. [Exit Gaunt. K. Rich. We were not born to fue, but to command, Which fince we cannot do to make you friends, Be ready, as your lives fhall anfwer it, At Coventry upon Saint Lambert's day. There fhall your Swords and Lances arbitrate The fwelling diff'rence of your fettled hate:
4 Or with pale beggar face-] i. e. with a face of fupplication. But this will not fatisfy the Oxford Editor, he turns it to baggard fear.
5 The flavish motive-] Motive, for inftrument.
Since we cannot atone you, you fhall fee
Justice decide the Victor's Chivalry.
Lord Marshal, bid our officers at Arms
Be ready to direct thefe home-alarms.
Changes to the Duke of Lancafter's Palace.
Enter Gaunt and Dutchess of Gloucester.
Las! the part I had in Glofter's blood
Doth more follicit me, than your Exclaims,
To ftir against the butchers of his life.
But fince correction lyeth in those hands,
Which made the fault that we cannot correct,
Put we our Quarrel to the Will of heav'n;
Who when it fees the hours ripe on earth,
Will rain hot vengeance on offenders' heads.
Dutch. Finds brotherhood in thee no fharper fpur?
Hath love in thy old blood no living fire?
Edward's fev'n fons, whereof thy felf art one,
Were as fev'n vials of his facred blood;
Or fev'n fair branches, fpringing from one root:
Some of those fev'n are dry'd by Nature's Course;
Some of those branches by the Deft'nies cut:
But Thomas, my dear lord, my life, my Glo'fter,
(One vial, full of Edward's facred blood;
One flourishing branch of his moft royal root;)
Is crack'd, and all the precious liquor fpilt;
Is hackt down, and his fummer leaves all faded,
By Envy's hand and Murder's bloody axe!
Ah, Gaunt! his blood was thine; that bed, that womb,
That metal, that self-mould that fashion'd thee;
Made him a man; and though thou liv'ft and breath'ft,
Yet art thou flain in him; thou dost consent
In fome large measure to thy father's death;
In that thou feeft thy wretched brother die,
Who was the model of thy father's life;
Call it not patience, Gaunt, it is defpair.
In fuff'ring thus thy brother to be flaughter'd,
Thou shew'it the naked pathway to thy life,
Teaching ftern murther how to butcher thee.
That which in mean men we entitle Patience,
Is pale cold Cowardife in noble breafts,
What shall I fay? to fafeguard thine own life,
The best way is to 'venge my Glofter's death.
Gaunt. God's is the Quarrel; for God's Subftitute,
His Deputy anointed in his fight,
Hath caus'd his death; the which if wrongfully,
Let God revenge, for I may never lift
An angry arm against his Minifter.
Dutch. Where then, alas, may I complain my felf?
Gaunt. To heav'n, the widow's Champion and De-
Dutch. Why then, I will: farewel, old Gaunt, fare-
Thou go'ft to Coventry, there to behold
Our Coufin Hereford and fell Mowbray fight.
O, fit my husband's wrongs on Hereford's fpear,
That it may enter butcher Mowbray's breast!
Or, if misfortune miss the first career,
Be Mowbray's fins fo heavy in his bofom,
That they may break his foaming Courfer's back,
And throw the rider headlong in the lifts,
A caitiff recreant to my coufin Hereford!
Farewel, old Gaunt; thy fometime brother's wife
With her companion Grief muft end her life.
Gaunt. Sifter, farewel; I must to Coventry. As much Good stay with thee, as go with me! Dutch. Yet one word more; grief boundeth where
Not with the empty hollowness, but weight:
I take my leave, before I have begun ;
For Sorrow ends not, when it seemeth done.
Commend me to my brother, Edmund York: