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Home > Richard III > ACT II - SCENE I. London. The palace.

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ACT II - SCENE I. London. The palace.
KING EDWARD IV
1    Why, so: now have I done a good day's work:
2    You peers, continue this united league:
3    I every day expect an embassage
4    From my Redeemer to redeem me hence;
5    And now in peace my soul shall part to heaven,
6    Since I have set my friends at peace on earth.
7    Rivers and Hastings, take each other's hand;
8    Dissemble not your hatred, swear your love.
RIVERS
9    By heaven, my heart is purged from grudging hate:
10   And with my hand I seal my true heart's love.
HASTINGS
11   So thrive I, as I truly swear the like!
KING EDWARD IV
12   Take heed you dally not before your king;
13   Lest he that is the supreme King of kings
14   Confound your hidden falsehood, and award
15   Either of you to be the other's end.
HASTINGS
16   So prosper I, as I swear perfect love!
RIVERS
17   And I, as I love Hastings with my heart!
KING EDWARD IV
18   Madam, yourself are not exempt in this,
19   Nor your son Dorset, Buckingham, nor you;
20   You have been factious one against the other,
21   Wife, love Lord Hastings, let him kiss your hand;
22   And what you do, do it unfeignedly.
QUEEN ELIZABETH
23   Here, Hastings; I will never more remember
24   Our former hatred, so thrive I and mine!
KING EDWARD IV
25   Dorset, embrace him; Hastings, love lord marquess.
DORSET
26   This interchange of love, I here protest,
27   Upon my part shall be unviolable.
HASTINGS
28   And so swear I, my lord
They embrace

KING EDWARD IV
29   Now, princely Buckingham, seal thou this league
30   With thy embracements to my wife's allies,
31   And make me happy in your unity.
BUCKINGHAM
32   Whenever Buckingham doth turn his hate
33   On you or yours,
To the Queen
34   but with all duteous love
35   Doth cherish you and yours, God punish me
36   With hate in those where I expect most love!
37   When I have most need to employ a friend,
38   And most assured that he is a friend
39   Deep, hollow, treacherous, and full of guile,
40   Be he unto me! this do I beg of God,
41   When I am cold in zeal to yours.
KING EDWARD IV
42   A pleasing cordial, princely Buckingham,
43   is this thy vow unto my sickly heart.
44   There wanteth now our brother Gloucester here,
45   To make the perfect period of this peace.
BUCKINGHAM
46   And, in good time, here comes the noble duke.
Enter GLOUCESTER

GLOUCESTER
47   Good morrow to my sovereign king and queen:
48   And, princely peers, a happy time of day!
KING EDWARD IV
49   Happy, indeed, as we have spent the day.
50   Brother, we done deeds of charity;
51   Made peace enmity, fair love of hate,
52   Between these swelling wrong-incensed peers.
GLOUCESTER
53   A blessed labour, my most sovereign liege:
54   Amongst this princely heap, if any here,
55   By false intelligence, or wrong surmise,
56   Hold me a foe;
57   If I unwittingly, or in my rage,
58   Have aught committed that is hardly borne
59   By any in this presence, I desire
60   To reconcile me to his friendly peace:
61   'Tis death to me to be at enmity;
62   I hate it, and desire all good men's love.
63   First, madam, I entreat true peace of you,
64   Which I will purchase with my duteous service;
65   Of you, my noble cousin Buckingham,
66   If ever any grudge were lodged between us;
67   Of you, Lord Rivers, and, Lord Grey, of you;
68   That without desert have frown'd on me;
69   Dukes, earls, lords, gentlemen; indeed, of all.
70   I do not know that Englishman alive
71   With whom my soul is any jot at odds
72   More than the infant that is born to-night
73   I thank my God for my humility.
QUEEN ELIZABETH
74   A holy day shall this be kept hereafter:
75   I would to God all strifes were well compounded.
76   My sovereign liege, I do beseech your majesty
77   To take our brother Clarence to your grace.
GLOUCESTER
78   Why, madam, have I offer'd love for this
79   To be so bouted in this royal presence?
80   Who knows not that the noble duke is dead?
They all start
81   You do him injury to scorn his corse.
RIVERS
82   Who knows not he is dead! who knows he is?
QUEEN ELIZABETH
83   All seeing heaven, what a world is this!
BUCKINGHAM
84   Look I so pale, Lord Dorset, as the rest?
DORSET
85   Ay, my good lord; and no one in this presence
86   But his red colour hath forsook his cheeks.
KING EDWARD IV
87   Is Clarence dead? the order was reversed.
GLOUCESTER
88   But he, poor soul, by your first order died,
89   And that a winged Mercury did bear:
90   Some tardy cripple bore the countermand,
91   That came too lag to see him buried.
92   God grant that some, less noble and less loyal,
93   Nearer in bloody thoughts, but not in blood,
94   Deserve not worse than wretched Clarence did,
95   And yet go current from suspicion!
Enter DERBY

DORSET
96   A boon, my sovereign, for my service done!
KING EDWARD IV
97   I pray thee, peace: my soul is full of sorrow.
DORSET
98   I will not rise, unless your highness grant.
KING EDWARD IV
99   Then speak at once what is it thou demand'st.
DORSET
100  The forfeit, sovereign, of my servant's life;
101  Who slew to-day a righteous gentleman
102  Lately attendant on the Duke of Norfolk.
KING EDWARD IV
103  Have a tongue to doom my brother's death,
104  And shall the same give pardon to a slave?
105  My brother slew no man; his fault was thought,
106  And yet his punishment was cruel death.
107  Who sued to me for him? who, in my rage,
108  Kneel'd at my feet, and bade me be advised
109  Who spake of brotherhood? who spake of love?
110  Who told me how the poor soul did forsake
111  The mighty Warwick, and did fight for me?
112  Who told me, in the field by Tewksbury
113  When Oxford had me down, he rescued me,
114  And said, 'Dear brother, live, and be a king'?
115  Who told me, when we both lay in the field
116  Frozen almost to death, how he did lap me
117  Even in his own garments, and gave himself,
118  All thin and naked, to the numb cold night?
119  All this from my remembrance brutish wrath
120  Sinfully pluck'd, and not a man of you
121  Had so much grace to put it in my mind.
122  But when your carters or your waiting-vassals
123  Have done a drunken slaughter, and defaced
124  The precious image of our dear Redeemer,
125  You straight are on your knees for pardon, pardon;
126  And I unjustly too, must grant it you
127  But for my brother not a man would speak,
128  Nor I, ungracious, speak unto myself
129  For him, poor soul. The proudest of you all
130  Have been beholding to him in his life;
131  Yet none of you would once plead for his life.
132  O God, I fear thy justice will take hold
133  On me, and you, and mine, and yours for this!
134  Come, Hastings, help me to my closet.
135  Oh, poor Clarence!
Exeunt some with KING EDWARD IV and QUEEN MARGARET

GLOUCESTER
136  This is the fruit of rashness! Mark'd you not
137  How that the guilty kindred of the queen
138  Look'd pale when they did hear of Clarence' death?
139  O, they did urge it still unto the king!
140  God will revenge it. But come, let us in,
141  To comfort Edward with our company.
BUCKINGHAM
142  We wait upon your grace.
Exeunt

< (Previous) ACT I, SCENE IVACT II, SCENE II (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
  • SCENE V
  • SCENE VI
  • SCENE VII


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


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

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