Page images
PDF
EPUB

;

My hair be fix'd on end, as one distract
Ay, every joint should seem to curse and ban:
And even now my burden'd heart would break,
Should I not curse them. Poison be their drink!
Gall, worse than gall, the daintiest that they
taste!

Their sweetest shade, a grove of cypress trees!
Their chiefest prospects, murdering basilisks!
Their softest touch, as smart as lizards' stings!
Their music, frightful as the serpent's hiss;
And boding screech-owls make the concert full!
All the foul terrors in dark-seated hell-

Q. Mar. Enough, sweet Suffolk; thou torment'st thyself;

And these dread curses-like the sun 'gainst glass,
Or like an overcharged gun,-recoil,
And turn the force of them upon thyself.

Suf. You bade me ban, and will you bid me leave?

Now, by the ground that I am banish'd from,
Well could I curse away a winter's night,
Though standing naked on a mountain top,
Where biting cold would never let grass grow,
And think it but a minute spent in sport.
Q. Mar. O, let me entreat thee, cease! Give
me thy hand,

That I may dew it with my mournful tears;
Nor let the rain of heaven wet this place,
To wash away my woeful monuments.
O, could this kiss be printed in thy hand;
Kisses his hand.
That thou might'st think upon these by the seal,
Through whom a thousand sighs are breath'd
for thee!

So, get thee gone, that I may know my grief;
'Tis but surmis'd whilst thou art standing by,
As one that surfeits thinking on a want.
I will repeal thee, or, be well assur'd,
Adventure to be banished myself:
And banished I am, if but from thee.
Go, speak not to me; even now be gone.-
0, go not yet!-Even thus two friends, con-
demn'd,

Embrace, and kiss, and take ten thousand leaves,
Loather a hundred times to part than die.
Yet now farewell; and farewell life with thee!
Suf. Thus is poor Suffolk ten times banished,
Once by the king, and three times thrice by thee.
'Tis not the land I care for, wert thou hence;
A wilderness is populous enough,

So Suffolk had thy heavenly company:
For where thou art, there is the world itself,
With every several pleasure in the world;
And where thou art not, desolation.

I can no more :-Live thou to joy thy life;
Myself no joy in nought, but that thou liv'st.

Enter VAUX.

Q. Mar. Whither goes Vaux so fast? what news, I pr'ythee?

Vaur. To signify unto his majesty,
That cardinal Beaufort is at point of death:
For suddenly a grievous sickness took him,

That makes him gasp, and stare, and catch the air,
Blaspheming God, and cursing men on earth.
Sometime, he talks as if duke Humphrey's ghost
Were by his side; sometime, he calls the king,
And whispers to his pillow, as to him,
The secrets of his overcharged soul:
And I am sent to tell his majesty,
That even now he cries aloud for him.

Q. Mar. Go, tell this heavy message to the king. [Exit Vaux. Ah me! what is this world? what news are these?

But wherefore grieve I at an hour's poor loss,
Omitting Suffolk's exile, my soul's treasure?
Why only, Suffolk, mourn I not for thee,
And with the southern clouds contend in tears;
Theirs for the earth's increase, mine for my sor-
rows?

Now, get thee hence: The king, thou know'st, is coming!

If thou be found by me, thou art but dead.

Suf. If I depart from thee, I cannot live: And in thy sight to die, what were it else, But like a pleasant slumber in thy lap ? Here could I breathe my soul into the air, As mild and gentle as the cradle-babe, Dying with mother's dugs between his lips: Where, from thy sight, I should be raging mad, And cry out for thee to close up mine eyes, To have thee with thy lips to stop my mouth; So should'st thou either turn my flying soul, Or I should breathe it so into thy body, And then it liv'd in sweet Elysium. To die by thee, were but to die in jest ; From thee to die, were torture more than death: O, let me stay, befall what may befall.

Q. Mar. Away! though parting be a fretful corrosive,

It is applied to a deathful wound.

To France, sweet Suffolk: Let me hear from thee;

For wheresoe'er thou art in this world's globe,
I'll have an Iris that shall find thee out.
Suf. I go.

Q. Mar. And take my heart with thee.
Suf. A jewel, lock'd into the woeful'st cask
That ever did contain a thing of worth.
Even as a splitted bark, so sunder we;
This way fall I to death.

Q. Mar. This way for me. [Exeunt, severally.

SCENE III.-London. Cardinal Beaufort's

bed-chamber.

Enter King HENRY, SALISBURY, WARWICK, and Others. The Cardinal in bed; Attendants with him.

K. Hen. How fares my lord? speak, Beaufort, to thy sovereign.

Car. If thou be'st death, I'll give thee Eng land's treasure,

Enough to purchase such another island,

So thou wilt let me live, and feel no pain,

K. Hen. Ah, what a sign it is of evil life, When death's approach is seen so terrible!

War. Beaufort, it is thy sovereign speaks to thee. Car. Bring me unto my trial when you will. Died he not in his bed? where should he die? Can I make men live, whe'r they will or no?O! torture me no more, I will confess.Alive again? then show me where he is; I'll give a thousand pound to look upon him.He hath no eyes, the dust hath blinded them. Comb down his hair; look! look! it stands upright,

Like lime-twigs set to catch my winged soul !— Give me some drink; and bid the apothecary Bring the strong poison that I bought of him. K. Hen. O thou eternal Mover of the heavens, Look with a gentle eye upon this wretch !

[blocks in formation]

ACT IV.

SCENE I.-Kent.
Firing heard at sea. Then enter from a boat, a
Captain, a Master, a Master's-Mate, WAL-
TER WHITMORE, and Others; with them Sur-
FOLK, and other Gentlemen, prisoners.

The sea-shore near Dover.

Cap. The gaudy, blabbing, and remorseful day

Is crept into the bosom of the sea;

And now loud-howling wolves arouse the jades,
That drag the tragic melancholy night;
Who with their drowsy, slow, and flagging wings,
Clip dead men's graves, and from their misty jaws
Breathe foul contagious darkness in the air.
Therefore, bring forth the soldiers of our prize;
For, whilst our pinnace anchors in the Downs,
Here shall they make their ransome on the sand,
Or with their blood stain this discolour'd shore.-
Master, this prisoner freely give I thee;-
And thou that art his mate, make boot of this ;-
The other, [Pointing to Suffolk. Walter Whit-
more, is thy share.

1 Gent. What is my ransome, master; let me

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]

not;

Ne'er yet did base dishonour blur our name,
But with our sword we wip'd away the blot;
Therefore, when merchant-like I sell revenge,
Broke be my sword, my arms torn and defac'd,
And I proclaim'd a coward through the world!
[Lays hold on Suffolk.

Suf. Stay, Whitmore; for thy prisoner is a prince,

The duke of Suffolk, William de la Poole.

Whit. The duke of Suffolk, muffled up in rags! Suf. Ay, but these rags are no part of the duke; Jove sometime went disguis'd, and why not I? Cap. But Jove was never slain, as thou shalt be. Suf. Obscure and lowly swain, King Henry's blood,

The honourable blood of Lancaster,
Must not be shed by such a jaded groom.
Hast thou not kiss'd thy hand, and held my
stirrup?

Bare-headed plodded by my foot-cloth mule,

And thought thee happy when I shook my head?
How often hast thou waited at my cup,
Fed from my trencher, kneel'd down at the board,
When I have feasted with queen Margaret?
Remember it, and let it make thee crest-fall'n;
Ay, and allay this thy abortive pride:
How in our voiding lobby hast thou stood,
And duly waited for my coming forth?
This hand of mine hath writ in thy behalf,
And therefore shall it charm thy riotous tongue.
Whit. Speak, captain, shall I stab the forlorn
swain?

Cap. First let my words stab him, as he hath

me.

Suf. Base slave! thy words are blunt, and so art thou.

Cap. Convey him hence, and on our long-boat's side

Strike off his head.

Suf. Thou dar'st not for thy own.
Cap. Yes, Poole.

Suf. Poole?

Cap. Poole? Sir Poole? lord?

Ay, kennel, puddle, sink: whose filth and dirt
Troubles the silver spring where England drinks.
Now will I dam up this thy yawning mouth,
For swallowing the treasure of the realm:
Thy lips, that kiss'd the queen, shall sweep the
ground;

And thou, that smil'dst at good duke Hum-
phrey's death,

Against the senseless winds shall grin in vain,
Who, in contempt, shall hiss at thee again:
And wedded be thou to the hags of hell,
For daring to affy a mighty lord
Unto the daughter of a worthless king,
Having neither subject, wealth, nor diadem.
By devilish policy art thou grown great,
And, like ambitious Sylla, overgorg'd
With gobbets of thy mother's bleeding heart.
By thee, Anjou and Maine were sold to France:
The false revolting Normans, thorough thee,
Disdain to call us lord; and Picardy

Hath slain their governors, surpriz'd our forts,
And sent the ragged soldiers wounded home.
The princely Warwick, and the Nevils all,-
Whose dreadful swords were never drawn in

vain,

As hating thee, are rising up in arms:

| Small things make base men proud: this villain
here,

Being captain of a pinnace, threatens more
Than Bargulus, the strong Illyrian pirate.
Drones suck not eagles' blood, but rob bee-hives.
It is impossible, that I should die
By such a lowly vassal as thyself.
Thy words move rage, and not remorse, in me:
I go of message from the queen to France;
I charge thee, waft me safely cross the channel.
Cap. Walter,-

Whit. Come, Suffolk, I must waft thee to thy
death.

Suf. Gelidus timor occupat artus :-'tis thee I fear.

Whit. Thou shalt have cause to fear, before I leave thee.

What, are ye daunted now? now will ye stoop ? 1 Gent. My gracious lord, entreat him, speak

him fair.

Suf. Suffolk's imperial tongue is stern and rough,
Us'd to command, untaught to plead for favour.
Far be it, we should honour such as these
With humble suit: no, rather let my head
Stoop to the block, than these knees bow to any,
Save to the God of heaven, and to my king;
And sooner dance upon a bloody pole,
Than stand uncover'd to the vulgar groom.
True nobility is exempt from fear :—
More can I bear, than you dare execute.

Cap. Hale him away, and let him talk no more.
Suf. Come, soldiers, show what cruelty ye can,
That this my death may never be forgot!
Great men oft die by vile bezonians :
A Roman sworder and banditto slave,
Murder'd sweet Tully; Brutus' bastard hand
Stabb'd Julius Cæsar; savage islanders,
Pompey the great: and Suffolk dies by pirates.
[Exit Suf. with Whit. and Others.
Cap. And as for these whose ransom we have
set,

It is our pleasure, one of them depart :-
Therefore come you with us, and let him go.

[Exeunt all but the first Gentleman. Re-enter WHITMORE, with SUFFOLK's body. Whit. There let his head and lifeless body lie, Until the queen his mistress bury it. [Exit. 1 Gent. O barbarous and bloody spectacle!

And now the house of York-thrust from the His body will I bear unto the king:

crown,

By shameful murder of a guiltless king,
And lofty proud encroaching tyranny,—
Burns with revenging fire; whose hopeful colours
Advance our half-fac'd sun, striving to shine,
Under the which is writ-Invitis nubibus.
The commons here in Kent are up in arms:
And, to conclude, reproach, and beggary,
Is crept into the palace of our king,
And all by thee:-Away! convey him hence.
Suf. O that I were a god, to shoot forth thunder
Upon these paltry, servile, abject drudges!

If he revenge it not, yet will his friends;
So will the queen, that living held him dear.
[Exit, with the body.

SCENE II.-Blackheath.

Enter GEORGE BEVIS and JOHN HOLLAND. Geo. Come, and get thee a sword, though made of a lath; they have been up these two days. John. They have the more need to sleep now then.

Geo. I tell thee, Jack Cade, the clothier, means

to dress the commonwealth, and turn it, and set a new nap upon it.

John. So he had need, for 'tis threadbare. Well, I say, it was never merry world in England, since gentlemen came up.

Geo. O miserable age! Virtue is not regarded in handycrafts-men.

John. The nobility think scorn to go in leather

aprons.

Geo. Nay more, the king's council are no good workmen.

John. True; And yet it is said,-Labour in thy vocation: which is as much to say, as,-let the magistrates be labouring men; and therefore should we be magistrates.

Geo. Thou hast hit it: for there's no better sign of a brave mind than a hard hand.

John. I see them! I see them! There's Best's son, the tanner of Wingham ;

Geo. He shall have the skins of our enemies,

to make dog's leather of.

John. And Dick the butcher,

Smith. He need not fear the sword, for his coat is of proof.

Aside. Dick. But, methinks, he should stand in fear of fire, being burnt i'the hand for stealing of sheep. [Aside.

Cade. Be brave then; for your captain is brave, and vows reformation. There shall be, in England, seven half-penny loaves sold for a penny; the three-hooped pot shall have ten hoops; and I will make it felony, to drink small beer: all the realm shall be in common, and in Cheapside shall my palfry go to grass. And when I am king, (as king I will be)

All. God save your majesty!

Cade. I thank you, good people :-there shall be no money; all shall eat and drink on my score; and I will apparel them all in one livery, that they may agree like brothers, and worship me their lord.

Dick. The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.

Geo. Then is sin struck down like an ox, and lamentable thing, that of the skin of an innocent iniquity's throat cut like a calf.

John. And Smith the weaver :

Geo. Argo, their thread of life is spun. John. Come, come, let's fall in with them. Drum. Enter CADE, DICK the Butcher, SMITH the Weaver, and Others in great number. Cade. We John Cade, so termed of our supposed father,

Dick. Or rather, of stealing a cade of herrings. [Aside. Cade. -for our enemies shall fall before us, inspired with the spirit of putting down kings and princes,-Command silence.

Dick. Silence!

Cade. My father was a Mortimer,

Dick. He was an honest man, and a good bricklayer.

Aside.

Cade. My mother a Plantagenet,—
Dick. I knew her well, she was a midwife.

[Aside. Cade. My wife descended of the Lacies,Dick. She was, indeed, a pedlar's daughter, and sold many laces. Aside. Smith. But, now of late, not able to travel with her furred pack, she washes bucks here at home. [Aside. Cade. Therefore am I of an honourable house. Dick. Ay, by my faith, the field is honourable; and there was he born, under a hedge; for his father had never a house, but the cage. Aside.

Cade. Valiant I am.
Smith. 'A must needs; for beggary is valiant.
Aside.

Cade. I am able to endure much. Dick. No question of that; for I have seen him whipped three market days together.

Cade. I fear neither sword nor fire.

Aside.

Cade. Nay, that I mean to do. Is not this a lamb should be made parchment? that parchment, being scribbled o'er, should undo a man? Some say, the bee stings: but I say, 'tis the bee's wax, for I did but seal once to a thing, and I was never mine own man since.-How now? who's there?

Enter some, bringing in the Clerk of Chatham.
Smith. The clerk of Chatham: he can write
and read, and cast accompt.
Cade. O monstrous!

Smith. We took him setting of boys' copies.
Cade. Here's a villain!

Smith. H'as a book in his pocket, with red letters in't.

Cade. Nay, then he is a conjurer.

Dick. Nay, he can make obligations, and write court-hand.

Cade. I am sorry for't: the man is a proper man, on mine honour; unless I find him guilty, he shall not die.-Come hither, sirrah, I must examine thee: What is thy name? Clerk. Emmanuel.

Dick. They use to write it on the top of letters;-Twill go hard with you.

Cade. Let me alone:-Dost thou use to write thy name? or hast thou a mark to thyself, like an honest plain-dealing man?

Clerk. Sir, I thank God, I have been so well brought up, that I can write my name.

All. He hath confessed: away with him; he's a villain, and a traitor.

Cade. Away with him, I say: hang him with his pen and inkhorn about his neck.

[Exeunt some with the Clerk. Enter MICHAEL.

Mich. Where's our general?
Cade. Here I am, thou particular fellow.

Mich. Fly, fly, fly! sir Humphrey Stafford and his brother are hard by, with the king's forces.

Cade. Stand, villain, stand, or I'll fell thee down: He shall be encountered with a man as good as himself: He is but a knight, is 'a? Mich. No.

Cade. To equal him, I will make myself a knight presently; Rise up, sir John Mortimer. Now have at him.

Enter Sir HUMPHREY STAFFORD, and WILLIAM his brother, with drum and Forces.

Staf. Rebellious hinds, the filth and scum of Kent,

Mark'd for the gallows,-lay your weapons down, Home to your cottages, forsake this groom ;The king is merciful, if you revolt.

W. Staf. But angry, wrathful, and inclin'd to blood,

If you go forward: therefore yield, or die.
Cade. As for these silken-coated slaves, I pass
not;

It is to you, good people, that I speak,
O'er whom, in time to come, I hope to reign;
For I am rightful heir unto the crown.

Staf. Villain, thy father was a plasterer ;
And thou thyself a shearman, Art thou not?
Cade. And Adam was a gardener.
W. Staf. And what of that?

Cade. Marry, this :-Edmund Mortimer, earl of March,

Married the duke of Clarence' daughter; Did he not?

[blocks in formation]

The elder of them, being put to nurse,
Was by a beggar-woman stol'n away;
And, ignorant of his birth and parentage,
Became a bricklayer, when he came to age:
His son am I; deny it, if you can.

Dick. Nay, 'tis too true; therefore he shall be king.

Smith. Sir, he made a chimney in my father's house, and the bricks are alive at this day to testify it; therefore, deny it not.

Staf. And will you credit this base drudge's words,

That speaks he knows not what?

All. Ay, marry, will we; therefore get ye gone.

W. Staf. Jack Cade, the duke of York hath taught you this.

Cade. He lies, for I invented it myself. Aside.-Go to, sirrah, Tell the king from me, that-for his father's sake, Henry the fifth, in whose time boys went to span-counter for French crowns,-I am content he shall reign; but I'll be protector over him.

Dick. And, furthermore, we'll have the lord Say's head, for selling the dukedom of Maine.

Cade. And good reason; for thereby is England maimed, and fain to go with a staff, but that my puissance holds it up. Fellow kings, I tell you, that that lord Say hath gelded the commonwealth, and made it an eunuch: and more than that, he can speak French, and therefore he is a traitor.

Staf. O gross and miserable ignorance!

Cade. Nay, answer, if you can: The Frenchmen are our enemies: go to then, I ask but this; Can he, that speaks with the tongue of an enemy, be a good counsellor, or no?

All. No, no; and therefore we'll have his head. W. Staf. Well, seeing gentle words will not prevail,

Assail them with an army of the king.

Staf. Herald, away: and, throughout every

town,

[blocks in formation]

SCENE III.-Another part of Blackheath. Alarums. The two parties enter, and fight, and both the STAFFORDS are slain.

Cade. Where's Dick, the butcher of Ashford ? Dick. Here, sir.

Cade. They fell before thee like sheep and oxen, and thou behavedst thyself as if thou hadst been in thine own slaughter-house: therefore thus will I reward thee,-The Lent shall be as long again as it is; and thou shalt have a license to kill for a hundred lacking one.

[blocks in formation]
« EelmineJätka »