List iconHenry VI, Part 3List icon

Henry VI, Part 3
Act 3, scene 1

Synopsis:

Contents

Characters in the Play

Entire Play

The English crown changes hands often in Henry VI, Part 3. At first, Richard, Duke of York, is allied with Warwick….

Act 1, scene 1

Richard, Duke of York, aided by the Earl of Warwick, occupies King Henry VI’s throne. Faced with Warwick’s soldiers, Henry…

Act 1, scene 2

York is persuaded by his sons Edward and Richard to break his oath to Henry and fight for the crown….

Act 1, scene 3

Rutland, youngest son of York, is killed by Lord Clifford as revenge against York, who killed Clifford’s father.

Act 1, scene 4

At the battle of Wakefield, York is captured by the victorious Queen Margaret, Prince Edward, Lord Clifford, and the Earl…

Act 2, scene 1

Edward and Richard receive the news of their father’s death. Warwick then brings news of the Yorkist defeat at St….

Act 2, scene 2

Warwick and the Yorkists confront King Henry, Margaret, the newly knighted Prince Edward, and the other Lancastrians. Both the Lancastrian…

Act 2, scene 3

Warwick retires from the battle and meets Edward, Richard, and George. They all fear defeat, but take their farewells and…

Act 2, scene 4

Richard and Clifford fight. When Warwick enters, Clifford flees. Richard prepares to search for Clifford in order to fight to…

Act 2, scene 5

As the battle of Towton proceeds, King Henry contemplates his unhappy life as king and then observes as a young…

Act 2, scene 6

Lord Clifford enters wounded to the death. Warwick, Edward, Richard, and George find Clifford’s body and taunt him. They prepare…

Act 3, scene 1

King Henry is captured by two gamekeepers, who now owe allegiance to King Edward.

Act 3, scene 2

King Edward, while hearing Lady Grey’s petition for her dead husband’s land, decides he wants her for his mistress; she…

Act 3, scene 3

As Queen Margaret persuades the French king Lewis to support her and Prince Edward, Warwick arrives with the offer of…

Act 4, scene 1

King Edward learns of Warwick’s defection and orders that troops be levied in preparation for war. Clarence decides to join…

Act 4, scene 2

Warwick and Clarence prepare to surprise King Edward, who awaits the French troops in a lightly guarded camp.

Act 4, scene 3

Warwick, Clarence, and their troops capture King Edward, remove his crown, and send him captive to the Archbishop of York….

Act 4, scene 4

King Edward’s wife, Queen Elizabeth, hearing of Edward’s capture, fears for her life and that of her unborn child. She…

Act 4, scene 5

Richard rescues King Edward from his captivity. They prepare to sail to Flanders.

Act 4, scene 6

Warwick rescues King Henry from imprisonment in the Tower of London. Henry turns over the government to Warwick and Clarence.

Act 4, scene 7

Edward, having returned from Flanders with a supporting army, enters the city of York, claiming that he wants only his…

Act 4, scene 8

King Henry, left at the Bishop’s Palace in London while Warwick and other Lancastrian leaders search for additional troops, is…

Act 5, scene 1

At Coventry, Warwick awaits the arrival of Clarence. Other forces arrive in Warwick’s support. King Edward then arrives, and is…

Act 5, scene 2

At the battle of Barnet, King Edward brings in a wounded Warwick and leaves him to his death. Lancastrian lords…

Act 5, scene 3

King Edward, Richard, and Clarence are triumphant after the battle of Barnet, but they know they must now meet Queen…

Act 5, scene 4

Queen Margaret rallies her forces despite Henry’s capture and Warwick’s death. King Edward and his forces enter. The battle of…

Act 5, scene 5

Queen Margaret and other Lancastrian leaders are brought in as captives. King Edward sends out orders to find Prince Edward….

Act 5, scene 6

Richard kills King Henry in the Tower, and then begins to plot his own way to the crown, now that…

Act 5, scene 7

King Edward celebrates the Yorkist triumph by having Richard and Clarence kiss his infant son. Richard, while outwardly loving the…

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Scene 1
Enter two Gamekeepers,
with crossbows in their hands.


FIRST GAMEKEEPER 
 Under this thick-grown brake we’ll shroud ourselves,
 For through this laund anon the deer will come;
 And in this covert will we make our stand,
 Culling the principal of all the deer.
SECOND GAMEKEEPER 
5 I’ll stay above the hill, so both may shoot.
FIRST GAMEKEEPER 
 That cannot be. The noise of thy crossbow
 Will scare the herd, and so my shoot is lost.
 Here stand we both, and aim we at the best.
 And for the time shall not seem tedious,
10 I’ll tell thee what befell me on a day
 In this self place where now we mean to stand.
SECOND GAMEKEEPER 
 Here comes a man; let’s stay till he be past.

Enter King Henry, in disguise, with a prayer book.

KING HENRY 
 From Scotland am I stol’n, even of pure love,
 To greet mine own land with my wishful sight.
15 No, Harry, Harry, ’tis no land of thine!
 Thy place is filled, thy scepter wrung from thee,
115

117
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 1

 Thy balm washed off wherewith thou wast anointed.
 No bending knee will call thee Caesar now,
 No humble suitors press to speak for right,
20 No, not a man comes for redress of thee;
 For how can I help them an not myself?
FIRST GAMEKEEPER, aside to Second Gamekeeper 
 Ay, here’s a deer whose skin’s a keeper’s fee.
 This is the quondam king. Let’s seize upon him.
KING HENRY 
 Let me embrace the sour adversaries,
25 For wise men say it is the wisest course.
SECOND GAMEKEEPER, aside to First Gamekeeper 
 Why linger we? Let us lay hands upon him.
FIRST GAMEKEEPER, aside to Second Gamekeeper 
 Forbear awhile; we’ll hear a little more.
KING HENRY 
 My queen and son are gone to France for aid,
 And, as I hear, the great commanding Warwick
30 Is thither gone to crave the French king’s sister
 To wife for Edward. If this news be true,
 Poor queen and son, your labor is but lost,
 For Warwick is a subtle orator,
 And Lewis a prince soon won with moving words.
35 By this account, then, Margaret may win him,
 For she’s a woman to be pitied much.
 Her sighs will make a batt’ry in his breast,
 Her tears will pierce into a marble heart.
 The tiger will be mild whiles she doth mourn,
40 And Nero will be tainted with remorse
 To hear and see her plaints, her brinish tears.
 Ay, but she’s come to beg, Warwick to give;
 She on his left side craving aid for Henry;
 He on his right asking a wife for Edward.
45 She weeps and says her Henry is deposed;
 He smiles and says his Edward is installed;
 That she, poor wretch, for grief can speak no more,

119
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 1

 Whiles Warwick tells his title, smooths the wrong,
 Inferreth arguments of mighty strength,
50 And in conclusion wins the King from her
 With promise of his sister and what else
 To strengthen and support King Edward’s place.
 O Margaret, thus ’twill be, and thou, poor soul,
 Art then forsaken, as thou went’st forlorn.
SECOND GAMEKEEPER 
55 Say, what art thou that talk’st of kings and queens?
KING HENRY 
 More than I seem, and less than I was born to:
 A man at least, for less I should not be;
 And men may talk of kings, and why not I?
SECOND GAMEKEEPER 
 Ay, but thou talk’st as if thou wert a king.
KING HENRY 
60 Why, so I am in mind, and that’s enough.
SECOND GAMEKEEPER 
 But if thou be a king, where is thy crown?
KING HENRY 
 My crown is in my heart, not on my head;
 Not decked with diamonds and Indian stones,
 Nor to be seen. My crown is called content;
65 A crown it is that seldom kings enjoy.
SECOND GAMEKEEPER 
 Well, if you be a king crowned with content,
 Your crown content and you must be contented
 To go along with us. For, as we think,
 You are the king King Edward hath deposed;
70 And we his subjects sworn in all allegiance
 Will apprehend you as his enemy.
KING HENRY 
 But did you never swear and break an oath?
SECOND GAMEKEEPER 
 No, never such an oath, nor will not now.

121
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 1

KING HENRY 
 Where did you dwell when I was King of England?
SECOND GAMEKEEPER 
75 Here in this country, where we now remain.
KING HENRY 
 I was anointed king at nine months old.
 My father and my grandfather were kings,
 And you were sworn true subjects unto me.
 And tell me, then, have you not broke your oaths?
FIRST GAMEKEEPER 
80 No, for we were subjects but while you were king.
KING HENRY 
 Why, am I dead? Do I not breathe a man?
 Ah, simple men, you know not what you swear.
 Look as I blow this feather from my face
 And as the air blows it to me again,
85 Obeying with my wind when I do blow
 And yielding to another when it blows,
 Commanded always by the greater gust,
 Such is the lightness of you common men.
 But do not break your oaths, for of that sin
90 My mild entreaty shall not make you guilty.
 Go where you will, the King shall be commanded,
 And be you kings: command, and I’ll obey.
FIRST GAMEKEEPER 
 We are true subjects to the King, King Edward.
KING HENRY 
 So would you be again to Henry
95 If he were seated as King Edward is.
FIRST GAMEKEEPER 
 We charge you in God’s name and the King’s
 To go with us unto the officers.
KING HENRY 
 In God’s name, lead. Your king’s name be obeyed,
 And what God will, that let your king perform.
100 And what he will, I humbly yield unto.
They exit.