List iconHenry VI, Part 2List icon

Henry VI, Part 2
Act 3, scene 3

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Characters in the Play

Entire Play

With a weak, unworldly king on the throne, the English nobility heightens its struggle for power in Henry VI, Part 2,…

Act 1, scene 1

King Henry meets his consort Queen Margaret, brought by Suffolk from France. The nobles fall into dissension, with the Cardinal,…

Act 1, scene 2

The Duchess of Gloucester’s dream of becoming queen is rebuked by her husband but encouraged by the treacherous priest John…

Act 1, scene 3

Queen Margaret and Suffolk dismiss petitioners seeking Gloucester’s aid and then conspire against Gloucester. Somerset and York then clash, as…

Act 1, scene 4

The Duchess of Gloucester watches while a spirit is conjured up to prophesy the fates of her rivals, but she…

Act 2, scene 1

King Henry and his court are hunting when they are interrupted by an announcement of a miracle in nearby Saint…

Act 2, scene 2

York persuades Salisbury and Warwick of the validity of his claim to the throne.

Act 2, scene 3

King Henry sentences the Duchess to public penance and exile, and removes Gloucester from his office as Lord Protector. Then…

Act 2, scene 4

Gloucester watches his Duchess’s public humiliation as she goes into exile. He is summoned to Parliament.

Act 3, scene 1

In Parliament Queen Margaret and the nobles level charges against Gloucester, but King Henry remains convinced of his uncle’s innocence….

Act 3, scene 2

The news of Gloucester’s murder makes King Henry faint and the Commons rise to demand Suffolk’s exile. The King obliges…

Act 3, scene 3

The Cardinal dies.

Act 4, scene 1

Attempting to sail to France, Suffolk is captured by shipmen and brutally assassinated.

Act 4, scene 2

In a plot instigated by York, Jack Cade leads a rebellion against King Henry. The Staffords seek to put it…

Act 4, scene 3

Cade defeats and kills the Staffords and marches on London.

Act 4, scene 4

King Henry flees London and Queen Margaret mourns Suffolk’s death. Lord Saye, whom the rebels hate, decides to hide in…

Act 4, scene 5

Citizens of London plead for military aid from Lord Scales, who commands forces at the Tower. He sends Matthew Gough,…

Act 4, scene 6

Cade enters London.

Act 4, scene 7

Cade defeats and kills Gough. Lord Saye is captured and killed.

Act 4, scene 8

Lord Clifford and Buckingham persuade Cade’s followers to return to King Henry. Cade flees.

Act 4, scene 9

As King Henry rejoices at Cade’s defeat, a messenger announces York’s approach with an Irish army ostensibly seeking Somerset’s arrest…

Act 4, scene 10

A starving Cade is killed in a fight with the Kentish gentleman Alexander Iden, in whose garden Cade looked for…

Act 5, scene 1

Buckingham seemingly placates York, and King Henry rewards Iden. York, seeing Somerset at liberty, announces his claim to the throne,…

Act 5, scene 2

York kills Lord Clifford, and York’s son Richard kills the Duke of Somerset. Defeated in battle, King Henry flees to…

Act 5, scene 3

Victorious, York and his followers set out for London.

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Scene 3
Enter King Henry, Salisbury and Warwick, to the
Cardinal in bed, raving and staring.


KING HENRY 
 How fares my lord? Speak, Beaufort, to thy sovereign.
CARDINAL 
 If thou be’st Death, I’ll give thee England’s treasure,
 Enough to purchase such another island,
 So thou wilt let me live and feel no pain.
KING HENRY 
5 Ah, what a sign it is of evil life,
 Where Death’s approach is seen so terrible!
WARWICK 
 Beaufort, it is thy sovereign speaks to thee.
CARDINAL 
 Bring me unto my trial when you will.
 Died he not in his bed? Where should he die?
10 Can I make men live, whe’er 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.
15 Comb down his hair. Look, look. It stands upright,
 Like lime-twigs set to catch my wingèd soul.
 Give me some drink, and bid the apothecary
 Bring the strong poison that I bought of him.
KING HENRY 
 O, Thou eternal mover of the heavens,

159
Henry VI, Part 2
ACT 3. SC. 3

20 Look with a gentle eye upon this wretch!
 O, beat away the busy meddling fiend
 That lays strong siege unto this wretch’s soul,
 And from his bosom purge this black despair!
WARWICK 
 See how the pangs of death do make him grin!
SALISBURY 
25 Disturb him not. Let him pass peaceably.
KING HENRY 
 Peace to his soul, if God’s good pleasure be!—
 Lord Card’nal, if thou think’st on heaven’s bliss,
 Hold up thy hand; make signal of thy hope.
The Cardinal dies.
 He dies and makes no sign. O, God forgive him!
WARWICK 
30 So bad a death argues a monstrous life.
KING HENRY 
 Forbear to judge, for we are sinners all.
 Close up his eyes, and draw the curtain close,
 And let us all to meditation.
After the curtains are closed around
the bed, they exit. The bed is removed.