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Home > Richard II > ACT V - SCENE III. A royal palace.

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ACT V - SCENE III. A royal palace.
Enter HENRY BOLINGBROKE, HENRY PERCY, and other Lords

HENRY BOLINGBROKE
1    Can no man tell me of my unthrifty son?
2    'Tis full three months since I did see him last;
3    If any plague hang over us, 'tis he.
4    I would to God, my lords, he might be found:
5    Inquire at London, 'mongst the taverns there,
6    For there, they say, he daily doth frequent,
7    With unrestrained loose companions,
8    Even such, they say, as stand in narrow lanes,
9    And beat our watch, and rob our passengers;
10   Which he, young wanton and effeminate boy,
11   Takes on the point of honour to support
12   So dissolute a crew.
HENRY PERCY
13   My lord, some two days since I saw the prince,
14   And told him of those triumphs held at Oxford.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
15   And what said the gallant?
HENRY PERCY
16   His answer was, he would unto the stews,
17   And from the common'st creature pluck a glove,
18   And wear it as a favour; and with that
19   He would unhorse the lustiest challenger.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
20   As dissolute as desperate; yet through both
21   I see some sparks of better hope, which elder years
22   May happily bring forth. But who comes here?
Enter DUKE OF AUMERLE

DUKE OF AUMERLE
23   Where is the king?
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
24   What means our cousin, that he stares and looks
25   So wildly?
DUKE OF AUMERLE
26   God save your grace! I do beseech your majesty,
27   To have some conference with your grace alone.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
28   Withdraw yourselves, and leave us here alone.
Exeunt HENRY PERCY and Lords
29   What is the matter with our cousin now?
DUKE OF AUMERLE
30   For ever may my knees grow to the earth,
31   My tongue cleave to my roof within my mouth
32   Unless a pardon ere I rise or speak.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
33   Intended or committed was this fault?
34   If on the first, how heinous e'er it be,
35   To win thy after-love I pardon thee.
DUKE OF AUMERLE
36   Then give me leave that I may turn the key,
37   That no man enter till my tale be done.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
38   Have thy desire.
DUKE OF YORK
Within
39    My liege, beware; look to thyself;
40   Thou hast a traitor in thy presence there.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
41   Villain, I'll make thee safe.
Drawing

DUKE OF AUMERLE
42   Stay thy revengeful hand; thou hast no cause to fear.
DUKE OF YORK
Within
43    Open the door, secure, foolhardy king:
44   Shall I for love speak treason to thy face?
45   Open the door, or I will break it open.
Enter DUKE OF YORK

HENRY BOLINGBROKE
46   What is the matter, uncle? speak;
47   Recover breath; tell us how near is danger,
48   That we may arm us to encounter it.
DUKE OF YORK
49   Peruse this writing here, and thou shalt know
50   The treason that my haste forbids me show.
DUKE OF AUMERLE
51   Remember, as thou read'st, thy promise pass'd:
52   I do repent me; read not my name there
53   My heart is not confederate with my hand.
DUKE OF YORK
54   It was, villain, ere thy hand did set it down.
55   I tore it from the traitor's bosom, king;
56   Fear, and not love, begets his penitence:
57   Forget to pity him, lest thy pity prove
58   A serpent that will sting thee to the heart.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
59   O heinous, strong and bold conspiracy!
60   O loyal father of a treacherous son!
61   Thou sheer, immaculate and silver fountain,
62   From when this stream through muddy passages
63   Hath held his current and defiled himself!
64   Thy overflow of good converts to bad,
65   And thy abundant goodness shall excuse
66   This deadly blot in thy digressing son.
DUKE OF YORK
67   So shall my virtue be his vice's bawd;
68   And he shall spend mine honour with his shame,
69   As thriftless sons their scraping fathers' gold.
70   Mine honour lives when his dishonour dies,
71   Or my shamed life in his dishonour lies:
72   Thou kill'st me in his life; giving him breath,
73   The traitor lives, the true man's put to death.
DUCHESS OF YORK
Within
74    What ho, my liege! for God's sake,
75   let me in.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
76   What shrill-voiced suppliant makes this eager cry?
DUCHESS OF YORK
77   A woman, and thy aunt, great king; 'tis I.
78   Speak with me, pity me, open the door.
79   A beggar begs that never begg'd before.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
80   Our scene is alter'd from a serious thing,
81   And now changed to 'The Beggar and the King.'
82   My dangerous cousin, let your mother in:
83   I know she is come to pray for your foul sin.
DUKE OF YORK
84   If thou do pardon, whosoever pray,
85   More sins for this forgiveness prosper may.
86   This fester'd joint cut off, the rest rest sound;
87   This let alone will all the rest confound.
Enter DUCHESS OF YORK

DUCHESS OF YORK
88   O king, believe not this hard-hearted man!
89   Love loving not itself none other can.
DUKE OF YORK
90   Thou frantic woman, what dost thou make here?
91   Shall thy old dugs once more a traitor rear?
DUCHESS OF YORK
92   Sweet York, be patient. Hear me, gentle liege.
Kneels

HENRY BOLINGBROKE
93   Rise up, good aunt.
DUCHESS OF YORK
94   Not yet, I thee beseech:
95   For ever will I walk upon my knees,
96   And never see day that the happy sees,
97   Till thou give joy; until thou bid me joy,
98   By pardoning Rutland, my transgressing boy.
DUKE OF AUMERLE
99   Unto my mother's prayers I bend my knee.
DUKE OF YORK
100  Against them both my true joints bended be.
101  Ill mayst thou thrive, if thou grant any grace!
DUCHESS OF YORK
102  Pleads he in earnest? look upon his face;
103  His eyes do drop no tears, his prayers are in jest;
104  His words come from his mouth, ours from our breast:
105  He prays but faintly and would be denied;
106  We pray with heart and soul and all beside:
107  His weary joints would gladly rise, I know;
108  Our knees shall kneel till to the ground they grow:
109  His prayers are full of false hypocrisy;
110  Ours of true zeal and deep integrity.
111  Our prayers do out-pray his; then let them have
112  That mercy which true prayer ought to have.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
113  Good aunt, stand up.
DUCHESS OF YORK
114  Nay, do not say, 'stand up;'
115  Say, 'pardon' first, and afterwards 'stand up.'
116  And if I were thy nurse, thy tongue to teach,
117  'Pardon' should be the first word of thy speech.
118  I never long'd to hear a word till now;
119  Say 'pardon,' king; let pity teach thee how:
120  The word is short, but not so short as sweet;
121  No word like 'pardon' for kings' mouths so meet.
DUKE OF YORK
122  Speak it in French, king; say, 'pardonne moi.'
DUCHESS OF YORK
123  Dost thou teach pardon pardon to destroy?
124  Ah, my sour husband, my hard-hearted lord,
125  That set'st the word itself against the word!
126  Speak 'pardon' as 'tis current in our land;
127  The chopping French we do not understand.
128  Thine eye begins to speak; set thy tongue there;
129  Or in thy piteous heart plant thou thine ear;
130  That hearing how our plaints and prayers do pierce,
131  Pity may move thee 'pardon' to rehearse.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
132  Good aunt, stand up.
DUCHESS OF YORK
133  I do not sue to stand;
134  Pardon is all the suit I have in hand.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
135  I pardon him, as God shall pardon me.
DUCHESS OF YORK
136  O happy vantage of a kneeling knee!
137  Yet am I sick for fear: speak it again;
138  Twice saying 'pardon' doth not pardon twain,
139  But makes one pardon strong.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
140  With all my heart
141  I pardon him.
DUCHESS OF YORK
142  A god on earth thou art.
HENRY BOLINGBROKE
143  But for our trusty brother-in-law and the abbot,
144  With all the rest of that consorted crew,
145  Destruction straight shall dog them at the heels.
146  Good uncle, help to order several powers
147  To Oxford, or where'er these traitors are:
148  They shall not live within this world, I swear,
149  But I will have them, if I once know where.
150  Uncle, farewell: and, cousin too, adieu:
151  Your mother well hath pray'd, and prove you true.
DUCHESS OF YORK
152  Come, my old son: I pray God make thee new.
Exeunt

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


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


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


  • ACT IV
  • SCENE I


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

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