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Home > King Henry VI Part 1 > ACT II - SCENE IV. London. The Temple-garden.

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ACT II - SCENE IV. London. The Temple-garden.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
1    Great lords and gentlemen, what means this silence?
2    Dare no man answer in a case of truth?
SUFFOLK
3    Within the Temple-hall we were too loud;
4    The garden here is more convenient.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
5    Then say at once if I maintain'd the truth;
6    Or else was wrangling Somerset in the error?
SUFFOLK
7    Faith, I have been a truant in the law,
8    And never yet could frame my will to it;
9    And therefore frame the law unto my will.
SOMERSET
10   Judge you, my Lord of Warwick, then, between us.
WARWICK
11   Between two hawks, which flies the higher pitch;
12   Between two dogs, which hath the deeper mouth;
13   Between two blades, which bears the better temper:
14   Between two horses, which doth bear him best;
15   Between two girls, which hath the merriest eye;
16   I have perhaps some shallow spirit of judgement;
17   But in these nice sharp quillets of the law,
18   Good faith, I am no wiser than a daw.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
19   Tut, tut, here is a mannerly forbearance:
20   The truth appears so naked on my side
21   That any purblind eye may find it out.
SOMERSET
22   And on my side it is so well apparell'd,
23   So clear, so shining and so evident
24   That it will glimmer through a blind man's eye.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
25   Since you are tongue-tied and so loath to speak,
26   In dumb significants proclaim your thoughts:
27   Let him that is a true-born gentleman
28   And stands upon the honour of his birth,
29   If he suppose that I have pleaded truth,
30   From off this brier pluck a white rose with me.
SOMERSET
31   Let him that is no coward nor no flatterer,
32   But dare maintain the party of the truth,
33   Pluck a red rose from off this thorn with me.
WARWICK
34   I love no colours, and without all colour
35   Of base insinuating flattery
36   I pluck this white rose with Plantagenet.
SUFFOLK
37   I pluck this red rose with young Somerset
38   And say withal I think he held the right.
VERNON
39   Stay, lords and gentlemen, and pluck no more,
40   Till you conclude that he upon whose side
41   The fewest roses are cropp'd from the tree
42   Shall yield the other in the right opinion.
SOMERSET
43   Good Master Vernon, it is well objected:
44   If I have fewest, I subscribe in silence.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
45   And I.
VERNON
46   Then for the truth and plainness of the case.
47   I pluck this pale and maiden blossom here,
48   Giving my verdict on the white rose side.
SOMERSET
49   Prick not your finger as you pluck it off,
50   Lest bleeding you do paint the white rose red
51   And fall on my side so, against your will.
VERNON
52   If I my lord, for my opinion bleed,
53   Opinion shall be surgeon to my hurt
54   And keep me on the side where still I am.
SOMERSET
55   Well, well, come on: who else?
Lawyer
56   Unless my study and my books be false,
57   The argument you held was wrong in you:
To SOMERSET
58   In sign whereof I pluck a white rose too.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
59   Now, Somerset, where is your argument?
SOMERSET
60   Here in my scabbard, meditating that
61   Shall dye your white rose in a bloody red.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
62   Meantime your cheeks do counterfeit our roses;
63   For pale they look with fear, as witnessing
64   The truth on our side.
SOMERSET
65   No, Plantagenet,
66   'Tis not for fear but anger that thy cheeks
67   Blush for pure shame to counterfeit our roses,
68   And yet thy tongue will not confess thy error.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
69   Hath not thy rose a canker, Somerset?
SOMERSET
70   Hath not thy rose a thorn, Plantagenet?
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
71   Ay, sharp and piercing, to maintain his truth;
72   Whiles thy consuming canker eats his falsehood.
SOMERSET
73   Well, I'll find friends to wear my bleeding roses,
74   That shall maintain what I have said is true,
75   Where false Plantagenet dare not be seen.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
76   Now, by this maiden blossom in my hand,
77   I scorn thee and thy fashion, peevish boy.
SUFFOLK
78   Turn not thy scorns this way, Plantagenet.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
79   Proud Pole, I will, and scorn both him and thee.
SUFFOLK
80   I'll turn my part thereof into thy throat.
SOMERSET
81   Away, away, good William de la Pole!
82   We grace the yeoman by conversing with him.
WARWICK
83   Now, by God's will, thou wrong'st him, Somerset;
84   His grandfather was Lionel Duke of Clarence,
85   Third son to the third Edward King of England:
86   Spring crestless yeomen from so deep a root?
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
87   He bears him on the place's privilege,
88   Or durst not, for his craven heart, say thus.
SOMERSET
89   By him that made me, I'll maintain my words
90   On any plot of ground in Christendom.
91   Was not thy father, Richard Earl of Cambridge,
92   For treason executed in our late king's days?
93   And, by his treason, stand'st not thou attainted,
94   Corrupted, and exempt from ancient gentry?
95   His trespass yet lives guilty in thy blood;
96   And, till thou be restored, thou art a yeoman.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
97   My father was attached, not attainted,
98   Condemn'd to die for treason, but no traitor;
99   And that I'll prove on better men than Somerset,
100  Were growing time once ripen'd to my will.
101  For your partaker Pole and you yourself,
102  I'll note you in my book of memory,
103  To scourge you for this apprehension:
104  Look to it well and say you are well warn'd.
SOMERSET
105  Ah, thou shalt find us ready for thee still;
106  And know us by these colours for thy foes,
107  For these my friends in spite of thee shall wear.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
108  And, by my soul, this pale and angry rose,
109  As cognizance of my blood-drinking hate,
110  Will I for ever and my faction wear,
111  Until it wither with me to my grave
112  Or flourish to the height of my degree.
SUFFOLK
113  Go forward and be choked with thy ambition!
114  And so farewell until I meet thee next.
Exit

SOMERSET
115  Have with thee, Pole. Farewell, ambitious Richard.
Exit

RICHARD PLANTAGENET
116  How I am braved and must perforce endure it!
WARWICK
117  This blot that they object against your house
118  Shall be wiped out in the next parliament
119  Call'd for the truce of Winchester and Gloucester;
120  And if thou be not then created York,
121  I will not live to be accounted Warwick.
122  Meantime, in signal of my love to thee,
123  Against proud Somerset and William Pole,
124  Will I upon thy party wear this rose:
125  And here I prophesy: this brawl to-day,
126  Grown to this faction in the Temple-garden,
127  Shall send between the red rose and the white
128  A thousand souls to death and deadly night.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
129  Good Master Vernon, I am bound to you,
130  That you on my behalf would pluck a flower.
VERNON
131  In your behalf still will I wear the same.
Lawyer
132  And so will I.
RICHARD PLANTAGENET
133  Thanks, gentle sir.
134  Come, let us four to dinner: I dare say
135  This quarrel will drink blood another day.
Exeunt

< (Previous) ACT II, SCENE IIIACT II, SCENE V (Next) >
Scene Index
ACT I
  • SCENE I
  • SCENE II
  • SCENE III
  • SCENE IV
  • SCENE V
  • SCENE VI


  • ACT II
  • SCENE I
  • SCENE II
  • SCENE III
  • SCENE IV
  • SCENE V


  • ACT III
  • SCENE I
  • SCENE II
  • SCENE III
  • SCENE IV


  • ACT IV
  • SCENE I
  • SCENE II
  • SCENE III
  • SCENE IV
  • SCENE V
  • SCENE VI
  • SCENE VII


  • ACT V
  • SCENE I
  • SCENE II
  • SCENE III
  • SCENE IV
  • SCENE V

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