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William Shakespeare (1564–1616). The Oxford Shakespeare. 1914.

Act V. Scene V.

The Third Part of King Henry the Sixth

Another Part of the Same.

Alarums: Excursions: and afterwards a retreat.Then enter KING EDWARD, CLARENCE, GLOUCESTER, and Forces; with QUEEN MARGARET, OXFORD, and SOMERSET prisoners.

K. Edw.Now, here a period of tumultuous broils.

Away with Oxford to Hames Castle straight:

For Somerset, off with his guilty head.

Go, bear them hence; I will not hear them speak.

Oxf.For my part, I’ll not trouble thee with words.

Som.Nor I, but stoop with patience to my fortune.[Exeunt OXFORD and SOMERSET, guarded.

Q. Mar.So part we sadly in this troublous world,

To meet with joy in sweet Jerusalem.

K. Edw.Is proclamation made, that who finds Edward

Shall have a high reward, and he his life?

Glo.It is: and lo, where youthful Edward comes.

Enter Soldiers, with PRINCE EDWARD.

K. Edw.Bring forth the gallant: let us hear him speak.

What! can so young a thorn begin to prick?

Edward, what satisfaction canst thou make,

For bearing arms, for stirring up my subjects,

And all the trouble thou hast turn’d me to?

Prince.Speak like a subject, proud ambitious York!

Suppose that I am now my father’s mouth:

Resign thy chair, and where I stand kneel thou,

Whilst I propose the self-same words to thee,

Which, traitor, thou wouldst have me answer to.

Q. Mar.Ah! that thy father had been so resolv’d.

Glo.That you might still have worn the petticoat,

And ne’er have stol’n the breech from Lancaster.

Prince.Let Æsop fable in a winter’s night;

His currish riddles sort not with this place.

Glo.By heaven, brat, I’ll plague you for that word.

Q. Mar.Ay, thou wast born to be a plague to men.

Glo.For God’s sake, take away this captive scold.

Prince.Nay, take away this scolding crookback rather.

K. Edw.Peace, wilful boy, or I will charm your tongue.

Clar.Untutor’d lad, thou art too malapert.

Prince.I know my duty; you are all undutiful:

Lascivious Edward, and thou perjur’d George,

And thou mis-shapen Dick, I tell ye all,

I am your better, traitors as ye are;

And thou usurp’st my father’s right and mine.

K. Edw.Take that, the likeness of this railer here.[Stabs him.

Glo.Sprawl’st thou? take that, to end thy agony.[Stabs him.

Clar.And there’s for twitting me with perjury.[Stabs him.

Q. Mar.O, kill me too!

Glo.Marry, and shall.[Offers to kill her.

K. Edw.Hold, Richard, hold! for we have done too much.

Glo.Why should she live, to fill the world with words?

K. Edw.What! doth she swoon? use means for her recovery.

Glo.Clarence, excuse me to the king, my brother;

I’ll hence to London on a serious matter:

Ere ye come there, be sure to hear some news.

Clar.What? what?

Glo.The Tower! the Tower![Exit.

Q. Mar.O Ned, sweet Ned! speak to thy mother, boy!

Canst thou not speak? O traitors! murderers!

They that stabb’d Cæsar shed no blood at all,

Did not offend, nor were not worthy blame,

If this foul deed were by, to equal it:

He was a man; this, in respect, a child;

And men ne’er spend their fury on a child.

What’s worse than murderer, that I may name it?

No, no, my heart will burst, an if I speak:

And I will speak, that so my heart may burst.

Butchers and villains! bloody cannibals!

How sweet a plant have you untimely cropp’d!

You have no children, butchers! if you had,

The thought of them would have stirr’d up remorse:

But if you ever chance to have a child,

Look in his youth to have him so cut off

As, deathsmen, you have rid this sweet young prince!

K. Edw.Away with her! go, bear her hence perforce.

Q. Mar.Nay, never bear me hence, dispatch me here:

Here sheathe thy sword, I’ll pardon thee my death.

What! wilt thou not? then, Clarence, do it thou.

Clar.By heaven, I will not do thee so much ease.

Q. Mar.Good Clarence, do; sweet Clarence, do thou do it.

Clar.Didst thou not hear me swear I would not do it?

Q. Mar.Ay, but thou usest to forswear thyself:

’Twas sin before, but now ’tis charity.

What! wilt thou not? Where is that devil’s butcher,

Hard-favour’d Richard? Richard, where art thou?

Thou art not here: murder is thy alms-deed;

Petitioners for blood thou ne’er put’st back.

K. Edw.Away, I say! I charge ye, bear her hence.

Q. Mar.So come to you and yours, as to this prince![Exit, led out forcibly.

K. Edw.Where’s Richard gone?

Clar.To London, all in post; and, as I guess,

To make a bloody supper in the Tower.

K. Edw.He’s sudden if a thing comes in his head.

Now march we hence: discharge the common sort

With pay and thanks, and let’s away to London

And see our gentle queen how well she fares;

By this, I hope, she hath a son for me.[Exeunt.