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That man i' the world who shall report he has
A better wife, let him in nought be trusted,
For speaking false in that: Thou art, alone,
(If thy rare qualities, sweet gentleness,
Thy meekness saint-like, wife-like government,-
Obeying in commanding,—and thy parts
Sovereign and pious else, could speak thee out,)
The queen of earthly queens :- She is noble born ;
And, like her true nobility, she has
Carried herself towards me.

Most gracious sir,
In humblest manner I require your highness,
That it shall please you to declare, in hearing
Of all these ears, (for where I am robb’d and bound,
There must I. be unloos’d; although not there
At once and fully satisfied,) whether ever I
Did broach this business to your highness; or
Laid any scruple in your way, which might
Induce you to the question on't? or ever
Have to you,—but with thanks to God for such
A royal lady,-spake one the least word that might
Be to the prejudice of her present state,
Or touch of her good person ?
K. Hen.

My lord cardinal, I do excuse you; yea, upon mine honour, I free you from ’t. You are not to be taught That you have many enemies, that know not Why they are so, but, like to village curs, Bark when their fellows do : by some of these The queen is put in anger. You are excus'd : But will you be more justified ? you ever Have wish'd the sleeping of this business ; never Desir'd it to be stirr’d: but oft have hinder’d, oft, The passages made toward it:-on my honour, I speak my good lord cardinal to this point, And thus far clear him. Now, what mov'd me to 't, I will be bold with time, and your attention :

Then mark the inducement. Thus it came ;-give

heed to 't: My conscience first receiv'd a tenderness, Scruple, and prick, on certain speeches utter'd By the bishop of Bayonne, then French ambassador; Who had been hither sent on the debating A marriage, 'twixt the duke of Orleans and Our daughter Mary : l' the progress of this business, Ere a determinate resolution, he (I mean the bishop) did require a respite; Wherein he might the king his lord advertise Whether our daughter were legitimate, Respecting this our marriage with the dowager, Sometimes our brother's wife. This respite shook The bosom of my conscience, enter'd me, Yea, with a splitting power, and made to tremble The region of my breast; which forc'd such way, That many maz'd considerings did throng, And press'd in with this caution. First, methought, I stood not in the smile of heaven; who had Commanded nature, that my lady's womb, If it conceiv'd a male child by me, should Do no more offices of life to 't, than The grave does to the dead : for her male issue Or died where they were made, or shortly after This world had air’d them : Hence I took a thought This was a judgment on me; that my kingdom, Well worthy the best heir o' the world, should not Be gladded in 't by me: Then follows, that I weigh'd the danger which my realms stood in By this my issue's fail: and that gave to me Many a groaning throe. Tbus hulling in The wild sea of my conscience, I did steer Toward this nedy, whereupon we are Now present here together; that 's to say, I meant to rectify my conscience,—which I then did feel full sick, and yet not well,

d you.

By all the reverend fathers of the land,
And doctors learn'd. First, I began in private
With you, my lord of Lincoln; you remember
How under my oppression I did reek,
When I first mov

Very well, my liege.
K. Hen. I have spoke long; be pleas'd yourself to

How far you satisfied me.

So please your highness,
The question did at first so stagger me, -
Bearing a state of mighty moment in 't,
And consequence of dread,- that I committed
The daring`st counsel which I had, to doubt;
And did entreat your highness to this course,
Which you are running here.
K. Hen.

I then mov'd you,
My lord of Canterbury; and got your leave
To make this present summons :

I left no reverend person in this court;
But by particular consent proceeded,
Under your hands and seals. Therefore, go on;
For no dislike i' the world against the person
Of the good queen, but the sharp thorny points
Of my alleged reasons, drive this forward :
Prove but our marriage lawful, by my life,
And kingly dignity, we are contented
To wear our mortal state to come with her,
Katharine our queen, before the primest creature
That 's paragon'd o' the world.

So please your highness,
The queen being absent, 't is a needful fitness,
That we adjourn this court till further day:
Meanwhile must be an earnest motion
Made to the queen, to call back her appeal
She intends unto his holiness. [They rise to depart.

K. Hen.

I may perceive, [Aside. These cardinals trifle with me: I abhor This dilatory sloth, and tricks of Rome. My learn’d and well-beloved servant, Cranmer, Prithee, return! with thy approach, i know, My comfort comes along. Break up the court : I say, set on.

[Exeunt in manner as they entered. ACT III.

SCENE I.- Palace at Bridewell. A Room in the

Queen's Apartment.
The QUEEN, and some of her Women, at work.
Q. Kath. Take thy lute, wench: my soul

grows sad with troubles : Sing, and disperse them if thou canst : leave working.

Orpheus with his lute made trees,
And the mountain-tops that freeze,

Bow themselves, wlien he did sing:
To his music, plants and flowers
Ever sprung; as sun and showers

There had made a lasting spring.
Everything that heard him play,
Even the billows of the sea,

Hung their heads, and then lay by.
In sweet music is such art :
Killing care and grief of heart
Fall asleep, or, hearing, die.

Enter a Gentleman.
Q. Kath. How now?
Gent. An 't please your grace, the two great cardinals
Wait in the presence.
Q. Kath.

Would they speak with me?
Gent. They will'd me say so, madam.
Q. Kath.

Pray their graces To come near. [Exit Gent.] What can be their

business With me, a poor weak woman, fallen from favour ? I do not like their coming. Now I think on 't, They should be good men ; their affairs as righteous : But all hoods make not monks.


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