List iconHenry VI, Part 3List icon

Henry VI, Part 3
Entire Play

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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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ACT 1
Scene 1
Alarum. Enter Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York;
Edward; Richard; Norfolk; Montague; Warwick; and
Soldiers, all wearing the white rose.


WARWICK 
 I wonder how the King escaped our hands.
YORK 
 While we pursued the horsemen of the north,
 He slyly stole away and left his men;
 Whereat the great lord of Northumberland,
5 Whose warlike ears could never brook retreat,
 Cheered up the drooping army; and himself,
 Lord Clifford, and Lord Stafford, all abreast,
 Charged our main battle’s front and, breaking in,
 Were by the swords of common soldiers slain.
EDWARD 
10 Lord Stafford’s father, Duke of Buckingham,
 Is either slain or wounded dangerous.
 I cleft his beaver with a downright blow.
 That this is true, father, behold his blood.
He shows his bloody sword.
MONTAGUE, to York, showing his sword 
 And, brother, here’s the Earl of Wiltshire’s blood,
15 Whom I encountered as the battles joined.
RICHARD, holding up a severed head 
 Speak thou for me, and tell them what I did.
7

9
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

YORK 
 Richard hath best deserved of all my sons.
 But is your Grace dead, my lord of Somerset?
NORFOLK 
 Such hope have all the line of John of Gaunt!
RICHARD 
20 Thus do I hope to shake King Henry’s head.
WARWICK 
 And so do I, victorious prince of York.
 Before I see thee seated in that throne
 Which now the house of Lancaster usurps,
 I vow by heaven these eyes shall never close.
25 This is the palace of the fearful king,
 And this the regal seat. Possess it, York,
 For this is thine and not King Henry’s heirs’.
YORK 
 Assist me, then, sweet Warwick, and I will,
 For hither we have broken in by force.
NORFOLK 
30 We’ll all assist you. He that flies shall die.
YORK 
 Thanks, gentle Norfolk. Stay by me, my lords.—
 And soldiers, stay and lodge by me this night.
They go up onto a dais or platform.
WARWICK 
 And when the King comes, offer him no violence
 Unless he seek to thrust you out perforce.
Soldiers exit or retire out of sight.
YORK 
35 The Queen this day here holds her parliament,
 But little thinks we shall be of her council.
 By words or blows, here let us win our right.
RICHARD 
 Armed as we are, let’s stay within this house.
WARWICK 
 The Bloody Parliament shall this be called

11
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

40 Unless Plantagenet, Duke of York, be king
 And bashful Henry deposed, whose cowardice
 Hath made us bywords to our enemies.
YORK 
 Then leave me not, my lords; be resolute.
 I mean to take possession of my right.
WARWICK 
45 Neither the King nor he that loves him best,
 The proudest he that holds up Lancaster,
 Dares stir a wing if Warwick shake his bells.
 I’ll plant Plantagenet, root him up who dares.
 Resolve thee, Richard; claim the English crown.
York sits in the chair of state.

Flourish. Enter King Henry, Clifford, Northumberland,
Westmorland, Exeter, and the rest, all wearing
the red rose.


KING HENRY 
50 My lords, look where the sturdy rebel sits,
 Even in the chair of state! Belike he means,
 Backed by the power of Warwick, that false peer,
 To aspire unto the crown and reign as king.
 Earl of Northumberland, he slew thy father,
55 And thine, Lord Clifford, and you both have vowed
 revenge
 On him, his sons, his favorites, and his friends.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
 If I be not, heavens be revenged on me!
CLIFFORD 
 The hope thereof makes Clifford mourn in steel.
WESTMORLAND 
60 What, shall we suffer this? Let’s pluck him down.
 My heart for anger burns. I cannot brook it.
KING HENRY 
 Be patient, gentle Earl of Westmorland.

13
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

CLIFFORD 
 Patience is for poltroons such as he.
 He durst not sit there had your father lived.
65 My gracious lord, here in the Parliament
 Let us assail the family of York.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
 Well hast thou spoken, cousin. Be it so.
KING HENRY 
 Ah, know you not the city favors them,
 And they have troops of soldiers at their beck?
EXETER 
70 But when the Duke is slain, they’ll quickly fly.
KING HENRY 
 Far be the thought of this from Henry’s heart,
 To make a shambles of the Parliament House!
 Cousin of Exeter, frowns, words, and threats
 Shall be the war that Henry means to use.—
75 Thou factious Duke of York, descend my throne
 And kneel for grace and mercy at my feet.
 I am thy sovereign.
YORK I am thine.
EXETER 
 For shame, come down. He made thee Duke of
80 York.
YORK 
 It was my inheritance, as the earldom was.
EXETER 
 Thy father was a traitor to the crown.
WARWICK 
 Exeter, thou art a traitor to the crown
 In following this usurping Henry.
CLIFFORD 
85 Whom should he follow but his natural king?
WARWICK 
 True, Clifford, that’s Richard, Duke of York.

15
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

KING HENRY, to York 
 And shall I stand, and thou sit in my throne?
YORK 
 It must and shall be so. Content thyself.
WARWICK, to King Henry 
 Be Duke of Lancaster. Let him be king.
WESTMORLAND 
90 He is both king and Duke of Lancaster,
 And that the lord of Westmorland shall maintain.
WARWICK 
 And Warwick shall disprove it. You forget
 That we are those which chased you from the field
 And slew your fathers and, with colors spread,
95 Marched through the city to the palace gates.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
 Yes, Warwick, I remember it to my grief;
 And by his soul, thou and thy house shall rue it.
WESTMORLAND 
 Plantagenet, of thee and these thy sons,
 Thy kinsmen, and thy friends, I’ll have more lives
100 Than drops of blood were in my father’s veins.
CLIFFORD 
 Urge it no more, lest that, instead of words,
 I send thee, Warwick, such a messenger
 As shall revenge his death before I stir.
WARWICK 
 Poor Clifford, how I scorn his worthless threats!
YORK 
105 Will you we show our title to the crown?
 If not, our swords shall plead it in the field.
KING HENRY 
 What title hast thou, traitor, to the crown?
 Thy father was as thou art, Duke of York;
 Thy grandfather, Roger Mortimer, Earl of March.
110 I am the son of Henry the Fifth,

17
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

 Who made the Dauphin and the French to stoop
 And seized upon their towns and provinces.
WARWICK 
 Talk not of France, sith thou hast lost it all.
KING HENRY 
 The Lord Protector lost it and not I.
115 When I was crowned, I was but nine months old.
RICHARD 
 You are old enough now, and yet, methinks, you
 lose.—
 Father, tear the crown from the usurper’s head.
EDWARD 
 Sweet father, do so. Set it on your head.
MONTAGUE, to York 
120 Good brother, as thou lov’st and honorest arms,
 Let’s fight it out and not stand caviling thus.
RICHARD 
 Sound drums and trumpets, and the King will fly.
YORK Sons, peace!
KING HENRY 
 Peace thou, and give King Henry leave to speak!
WARWICK 
125 Plantagenet shall speak first. Hear him, lords,
 And be you silent and attentive too,
 For he that interrupts him shall not live.
KING HENRY 
 Think’st thou that I will leave my kingly throne,
 Wherein my grandsire and my father sat?
130 No. First shall war unpeople this my realm;
 Ay, and their colors, often borne in France,
 And now in England to our heart’s great sorrow,
 Shall be my winding-sheet. Why faint you, lords?
 My title’s good, and better far than his.
WARWICK 
135 Prove it, Henry, and thou shalt be king.

19
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

KING HENRY 
 Henry the Fourth by conquest got the crown.
YORK 
 ’Twas by rebellion against his king.
KING HENRY, aside 
 I know not what to say; my title’s weak.—
 Tell me, may not a king adopt an heir?
YORK 140What then?
KING HENRY 
 An if he may, then am I lawful king;
 For Richard, in the view of many lords,
 Resigned the crown to Henry the Fourth,
 Whose heir my father was, and I am his.
YORK 
145 He rose against him, being his sovereign,
 And made him to resign his crown perforce.
WARWICK 
 Suppose, my lords, he did it unconstrained,
 Think you ’twere prejudicial to his crown?
EXETER 
 No, for he could not so resign his crown
150 But that the next heir should succeed and reign.
KING HENRY 
 Art thou against us, Duke of Exeter?
EXETER 
 His is the right, and therefore pardon me.
YORK 
 Why whisper you, my lords, and answer not?
EXETER 
 My conscience tells me he is lawful king.
KING HENRY, aside 
155 All will revolt from me and turn to him.
NORTHUMBERLAND, to York 
 Plantagenet, for all the claim thou lay’st,
 Think not that Henry shall be so deposed.

21
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

WARWICK 
 Deposed he shall be, in despite of all.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
 Thou art deceived. ’Tis not thy southern power
160 Of Essex, Norfolk, Suffolk, nor of Kent,
 Which makes thee thus presumptuous and proud,
 Can set the Duke up in despite of me.
CLIFFORD 
 King Henry, be thy title right or wrong,
 Lord Clifford vows to fight in thy defense.
165 May that ground gape and swallow me alive
 Where I shall kneel to him that slew my father.
KING HENRY 
 O Clifford, how thy words revive my heart!
YORK 
 Henry of Lancaster, resign thy crown.—
 What mutter you, or what conspire you, lords?
WARWICK, to King Henry 
170 Do right unto this princely Duke of York,
 Or I will fill the house with armèd men,
 And over the chair of state, where now he sits,
 Write up his title with usurping blood.
He stamps with his foot,
and the Soldiers show themselves.

KING HENRY 
 My lord of Warwick, hear but one word:
175 Let me for this my lifetime reign as king.
YORK 
 Confirm the crown to me and to mine heirs,
 And thou shalt reign in quiet while thou liv’st.
KING HENRY 
 I am content. Richard Plantagenet,
 Enjoy the kingdom after my decease.
CLIFFORD 
180 What wrong is this unto the Prince your son!

23
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

WARWICK 
 What good is this to England and himself!
WESTMORLAND 
 Base, fearful, and despairing Henry!
CLIFFORD 
 How hast thou injured both thyself and us!
WESTMORLAND 
 I cannot stay to hear these articles.
NORTHUMBERLAND 185Nor I.
CLIFFORD 
 Come, cousin, let us tell the Queen these news.
WESTMORLAND 
 Farewell, faint-hearted and degenerate king,
 In whose cold blood no spark of honor bides.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
 Be thou a prey unto the house of York,
190 And die in bands for this unmanly deed.
CLIFFORD 
 In dreadful war mayst thou be overcome,
 Or live in peace abandoned and despised!
Westmorland, Northumberland, Clifford,
and their Soldiers exit.

WARWICK 
 Turn this way, Henry, and regard them not.
EXETER 
 They seek revenge and therefore will not yield.
KING HENRY 
195 Ah, Exeter!
WARWICK  Why should you sigh, my lord?
KING HENRY 
 Not for myself, Lord Warwick, but my son,
 Whom I unnaturally shall disinherit.
 But be it as it may. (To York.) I here entail
200 The crown to thee and to thine heirs forever,
 Conditionally, that here thou take an oath
 To cease this civil war and, whilst I live,

25
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

 To honor me as thy king and sovereign,
 And neither by treason nor hostility
205 To seek to put me down and reign thyself.
YORK 
 This oath I willingly take and will perform.
WARWICK 
 Long live King Henry! Plantagenet, embrace him.
York stands, and King Henry ascends the dais.
KING HENRY, to York 
 And long live thou and these thy forward sons!
They embrace.
YORK 
 Now York and Lancaster are reconciled.
EXETER 
210 Accursed be he that seeks to make them foes.
Sennet. Here they come down.
YORK, to King Henry 
 Farewell, my gracious lord. I’ll to my castle.
WARWICK 
 And I’ll keep London with my soldiers.
NORFOLK 
 And I to Norfolk with my followers.
MONTAGUE 
 And I unto the sea, from whence I came.
York, Edward, Richard, Warwick, Norfolk,
Montague, and their Soldiers exit.

KING HENRY 
215 And I with grief and sorrow to the court.

Enter Queen Margaret, with Prince Edward.

EXETER 
 Here comes the Queen, whose looks bewray her
 anger.
 I’ll steal away.
KING HENRY  Exeter, so will I.
They begin to exit.

27
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

QUEEN MARGARET 
220 Nay, go not from me. I will follow thee.
KING HENRY 
 Be patient, gentle queen, and I will stay.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Who can be patient in such extremes?
 Ah, wretched man, would I had died a maid
 And never seen thee, never borne thee son,
225 Seeing thou hast proved so unnatural a father.
 Hath he deserved to lose his birthright thus?
 Hadst thou but loved him half so well as I,
 Or felt that pain which I did for him once,
 Or nourished him as I did with my blood,
230 Thou wouldst have left thy dearest heart-blood
 there,
 Rather than have made that savage duke thine heir
 And disinherited thine only son.
PRINCE EDWARD 
 Father, you cannot disinherit me.
235 If you be king, why should not I succeed?
KING HENRY 
 Pardon me, Margaret.—Pardon me, sweet son.
 The Earl of Warwick and the Duke enforced me.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Enforced thee? Art thou king and wilt be forced?
 I shame to hear thee speak. Ah, timorous wretch,
240 Thou hast undone thyself, thy son, and me,
 And giv’n unto the house of York such head
 As thou shalt reign but by their sufferance!
 To entail him and his heirs unto the crown,
 What is it but to make thy sepulcher
245 And creep into it far before thy time?
 Warwick is Chancellor and the lord of Callice;
 Stern Falconbridge commands the Narrow Seas;
 The Duke is made Protector of the realm;
 And yet shalt thou be safe? Such safety finds

29
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 1

250 The trembling lamb environèd with wolves.
 Had I been there, which am a silly woman,
 The soldiers should have tossed me on their pikes
 Before I would have granted to that act.
 But thou preferr’st thy life before thine honor.
255 And seeing thou dost, I here divorce myself
 Both from thy table, Henry, and thy bed,
 Until that act of Parliament be repealed
 Whereby my son is disinherited.
 The northern lords that have forsworn thy colors
260 Will follow mine if once they see them spread;
 And spread they shall be, to thy foul disgrace
 And utter ruin of the house of York.
 Thus do I leave thee.—Come, son, let’s away.
 Our army is ready. Come, we’ll after them.
KING HENRY 
265 Stay, gentle Margaret, and hear me speak.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Thou hast spoke too much already. Get thee gone.
KING HENRY 
 Gentle son Edward, thou wilt stay with me?
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Ay, to be murdered by his enemies!
PRINCE EDWARD 
 When I return with victory from the field,
270 I’ll see your Grace. Till then, I’ll follow her.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Come, son, away. We may not linger thus.
Queen Margaret and Prince Edward exit.
KING HENRY 
 Poor queen! How love to me and to her son
 Hath made her break out into terms of rage!
 Revenged may she be on that hateful duke,
275 Whose haughty spirit, wingèd with desire,
 Will cost my crown, and like an empty eagle
 Tire on the flesh of me and of my son.

31
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 2

 The loss of those three lords torments my heart.
 I’ll write unto them and entreat them fair.
280 Come, cousin, you shall be the messenger.
EXETER 
 And I, I hope, shall reconcile them all.
Flourish. They exit.


Scene 2
Enter Richard, Edward, and Montague,
all wearing the white rose.


RICHARD 
 Brother, though I be youngest, give me leave.
EDWARD 
 No, I can better play the orator.
MONTAGUE 
 But I have reasons strong and forcible.

Enter the Duke of York.

YORK 
 Why, how now, sons and brother, at a strife?
5 What is your quarrel? How began it first?
EDWARD 
 No quarrel, but a slight contention.
YORK About what?
RICHARD 
 About that which concerns your Grace and us:
 The crown of England, father, which is yours.
YORK 
10 Mine, boy? Not till King Henry be dead.
RICHARD 
 Your right depends not on his life or death.
EDWARD 
 Now you are heir; therefore enjoy it now.

33
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 2

 By giving the house of Lancaster leave to breathe,
 It will outrun you, father, in the end.
YORK 
15 I took an oath that he should quietly reign.
EDWARD 
 But for a kingdom any oath may be broken.
 I would break a thousand oaths to reign one year.
RICHARD 
 No, God forbid your Grace should be forsworn.
YORK 
 I shall be, if I claim by open war.
RICHARD 
20 I’ll prove the contrary, if you’ll hear me speak.
YORK 
 Thou canst not, son; it is impossible.
RICHARD 
 An oath is of no moment, being not took
 Before a true and lawful magistrate
 That hath authority over him that swears.
25 Henry had none, but did usurp the place.
 Then, seeing ’twas he that made you to depose,
 Your oath, my lord, is vain and frivolous.
 Therefore, to arms! And, father, do but think
 How sweet a thing it is to wear a crown,
30 Within whose circuit is Elysium
 And all that poets feign of bliss and joy.
 Why do we linger thus? I cannot rest
 Until the white rose that I wear be dyed
 Even in the lukewarm blood of Henry’s heart.
YORK 
35 Richard, enough. I will be king or die.—
 Brother, thou shalt to London presently,
 And whet on Warwick to this enterprise.—
 Thou, Richard, shalt to the Duke of Norfolk
 And tell him privily of our intent.—
40 You, Edward, shall unto my Lord Cobham,

35
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 2

 With whom the Kentishmen will willingly rise;
 In them I trust, for they are soldiers
 Witty, courteous, liberal, full of spirit.
 While you are thus employed, what resteth more
45 But that I seek occasion how to rise,
 And yet the King not privy to my drift,
 Nor any of the house of Lancaster.

Enter a Messenger.

 But stay, what news? Why com’st thou in such post?
MESSENGER 
 The Queen with all the northern earls and lords
50 Intend here to besiege you in your castle.
 She is hard by with twenty thousand men.
 And therefore fortify your hold, my lord.He exits.
YORK 
 Ay, with my sword. What, think’st thou that we fear
 them?—
55 Edward and Richard, you shall stay with me;
 My brother Montague shall post to London.
 Let noble Warwick, Cobham, and the rest,
 Whom we have left Protectors of the King,
 With powerful policy strengthen themselves
60 And trust not simple Henry nor his oaths.
MONTAGUE 
 Brother, I go. I’ll win them, fear it not.
 And thus most humbly I do take my leave.
Montague exits.

Enter Sir John Mortimer, and his brother,
Sir Hugh Mortimer.


YORK 
 Sir John and Sir Hugh Mortimer, mine uncles,
 You are come to Sandal in a happy hour.
65 The army of the Queen mean to besiege us.

37
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 3

SIR JOHN 
 She shall not need; we’ll meet her in the field.
YORK What, with five thousand men?
RICHARD 
 Ay, with five hundred, father, for a need.
 A woman’s general; what should we fear?
A march afar off.
EDWARD 
70 I hear their drums. Let’s set our men in order,
 And issue forth and bid them battle straight.
YORK 
 Five men to twenty: though the odds be great,
 I doubt not, uncle, of our victory.
 Many a battle have I won in France
75 Whenas the enemy hath been ten to one.
 Why should I not now have the like success?
Alarum. They exit.


Scene 3
Enter Rutland and his Tutor.

RUTLAND 
 Ah, whither shall I fly to scape their hands?

Enter Clifford with Soldiers, all wearing the red rose.

 Ah, tutor, look where bloody Clifford comes.
CLIFFORD 
 Chaplain, away. Thy priesthood saves thy life.
 As for the brat of this accursèd duke,
5 Whose father slew my father, he shall die.
TUTOR 
 And I, my lord, will bear him company.
CLIFFORD Soldiers, away with him.

39
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 3

TUTOR 
 Ah, Clifford, murder not this innocent child,
 Lest thou be hated both of God and man.
He exits, dragged off by Soldiers.
CLIFFORD, approaching Rutland 
10 How now? Is he dead already? Or is it fear
 That makes him close his eyes? I’ll open them.
RUTLAND 
 So looks the pent-up lion o’er the wretch
 That trembles under his devouring paws;
 And so he walks, insulting o’er his prey;
15 And so he comes to rend his limbs asunder.
 Ah, gentle Clifford, kill me with thy sword
 And not with such a cruel threat’ning look.
 Sweet Clifford, hear me speak before I die.
 I am too mean a subject for thy wrath.
20 Be thou revenged on men, and let me live.
CLIFFORD 
 In vain thou speak’st, poor boy. My father’s blood
 Hath stopped the passage where thy words should
 enter.
RUTLAND 
 Then let my father’s blood open it again;
25 He is a man and, Clifford, cope with him.
CLIFFORD 
 Had I thy brethren here, their lives and thine
 Were not revenge sufficient for me.
 No, if I digged up thy forefathers’ graves
 And hung their rotten coffins up in chains,
30 It could not slake mine ire nor ease my heart.
 The sight of any of the house of York
 Is as a fury to torment my soul,
 And till I root out their accursèd line
 And leave not one alive, I live in hell.
35 Therefore—He raises his rapier.

41
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 4

RUTLAND 
 O, let me pray before I take my death!
 To thee I pray: sweet Clifford, pity me!
CLIFFORD 
 Such pity as my rapier’s point affords.
RUTLAND 
 I never did thee harm. Why wilt thou slay me?
CLIFFORD 
40 Thy father hath.
RUTLAND  But ’twas ere I was born.
 Thou hast one son; for his sake pity me,
 Lest in revenge thereof, sith God is just,
 He be as miserably slain as I.
45 Ah, let me live in prison all my days,
 And when I give occasion of offense
 Then let me die, for now thou hast no cause.
CLIFFORD 
 No cause? Thy father slew my father; therefore die.
He stabs Rutland.
RUTLAND 
 Di faciant laudis summa sit ista tuae!He dies.
CLIFFORD 
50 Plantagenet, I come, Plantagenet!
 And this thy son’s blood, cleaving to my blade,
 Shall rust upon my weapon till thy blood,
 Congealed with this, do make me wipe off both.
He exits, with Soldiers carrying off Rutland’s body.


Scene 4
Alarum. Enter Richard, Duke of York, wearing the
white rose.


YORK 
 The army of the Queen hath got the field.
 My uncles both are slain in rescuing me;

43
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 4

 And all my followers to the eager foe
 Turn back and fly like ships before the wind,
5 Or lambs pursued by hunger-starvèd wolves.
 My sons, God knows what hath bechancèd them;
 But this I know: they have demeaned themselves
 Like men borne to renown by life or death.
 Three times did Richard make a lane to me
10 And thrice cried “Courage, father, fight it out!”
 And full as oft came Edward to my side,
 With purple falchion painted to the hilt
 In blood of those that had encountered him;
 And when the hardiest warriors did retire,
15 Richard cried “Charge, and give no foot of ground!”
 And cried “A crown or else a glorious tomb;
 A scepter or an earthly sepulcher!”
 With this we charged again; but, out alas,
 We budged again, as I have seen a swan
20 With bootless labor swim against the tide
 And spend her strength with over-matching waves.
A short alarum within.
 Ah, hark, the fatal followers do pursue,
 And I am faint and cannot fly their fury;
 And were I strong, I would not shun their fury.
25 The sands are numbered that makes up my life.
 Here must I stay, and here my life must end.

Enter Queen Margaret, Clifford, Northumberland,
the young Prince Edward, and Soldiers,
all wearing the red rose.


 Come, bloody Clifford, rough Northumberland,
 I dare your quenchless fury to more rage.
 I am your butt, and I abide your shot.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
30 Yield to our mercy, proud Plantagenet.
CLIFFORD 
 Ay, to such mercy as his ruthless arm

45
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 4

 With downright payment showed unto my father.
 Now Phaëton hath tumbled from his car
 And made an evening at the noontide prick.
YORK 
35 My ashes, as the Phoenix’, may bring forth
 A bird that will revenge upon you all;
 And in that hope I throw mine eyes to heaven,
 Scorning whate’er you can afflict me with.
 Why come you not? What, multitudes, and fear?
CLIFFORD 
40 So cowards fight when they can fly no further;
 So doves do peck the falcon’s piercing talons;
 So desperate thieves, all hopeless of their lives,
 Breathe out invectives ’gainst the officers.
YORK 
 O Clifford, but bethink thee once again
45 And in thy thought o’errun my former time;
 And, if thou canst for blushing, view this face
 And bite thy tongue that slanders him with cowardice
 Whose frown hath made thee faint and fly ere this.
CLIFFORD 
 I will not bandy with thee word for word,
50 But buckler with thee blows twice two for one.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Hold, valiant Clifford, for a thousand causes
 I would prolong a while the traitor’s life.—
 Wrath makes him deaf; speak thou, Northumberland.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
 Hold, Clifford, do not honor him so much
55 To prick thy finger, though to wound his heart.
 What valor were it when a cur doth grin
 For one to thrust his hand between his teeth,
 When he might spurn him with his foot away?
 It is war’s prize to take all vantages,
60 And ten to one is no impeach of valor.
They attack York.

47
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 4

CLIFFORD 
 Ay, ay, so strives the woodcock with the gin.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
 So doth the coney struggle in the net.
YORK 
 So triumph thieves upon their conquered booty;
 So true men yield with robbers, so o’ermatched.
York is overcome.
NORTHUMBERLAND, to Queen Margaret 
65 What would your Grace have done unto him now?
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Brave warriors, Clifford and Northumberland,
 Come, make him stand upon this molehill here
 That raught at mountains with outstretchèd arms,
 Yet parted but the shadow with his hand.
They place York on a small prominence.
70 What, was it you that would be England’s king?
 Was ’t you that reveled in our parliament
 And made a preachment of your high descent?
 Where are your mess of sons to back you now,
 The wanton Edward and the lusty George?
75 And where’s that valiant crookback prodigy,
 Dickie, your boy, that with his grumbling voice
 Was wont to cheer his dad in mutinies?
 Or, with the rest, where is your darling Rutland?
 Look, York, I stained this napkin with the blood
80 That valiant Clifford with his rapier’s point
 Made issue from the bosom of the boy;
 And if thine eyes can water for his death,
 I give thee this to dry thy cheeks withal.
She gives him a bloody cloth.
 Alas, poor York, but that I hate thee deadly
85 I should lament thy miserable state.
 I prithee grieve to make me merry, York.
 What, hath thy fiery heart so parched thine entrails
 That not a tear can fall for Rutland’s death?

49
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 4

 Why art thou patient, man? Thou shouldst be mad;
90 And I, to make thee mad, do mock thee thus.
 Stamp, rave, and fret, that I may sing and dance.
 Thou would’st be fee’d, I see, to make me sport.—
 York cannot speak unless he wear a crown.
 A crown for York!She is handed a paper crown.
95 And, lords, bow low to him.
 Hold you his hands whilst I do set it on.
She puts the crown on York’s head.
 Ay, marry, sir, now looks he like a king.
 Ay, this is he that took King Henry’s chair,
 And this is he was his adopted heir.
100 But how is it that great Plantagenet
 Is crowned so soon and broke his solemn oath?—
 As I bethink me, you should not be king
 Till our King Henry had shook hands with Death.
 And will you pale your head in Henry’s glory
105 And rob his temples of the diadem
 Now, in his life, against your holy oath?
 O, ’tis a fault too too unpardonable.
 Off with the crown and, with the crown, his head;
 And whilst we breathe, take time to do him dead.
CLIFFORD 
110 That is my office, for my father’s sake.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Nay, stay, let’s hear the orisons he makes.
YORK 
 She-wolf of France, but worse than wolves of
 France,
 Whose tongue more poisons than the adder’s tooth:
115 How ill-beseeming is it in thy sex
 To triumph like an Amazonian trull
 Upon their woes whom Fortune captivates.
 But that thy face is vizard-like, unchanging,
 Made impudent with use of evil deeds,
120 I would assay, proud queen, to make thee blush.

51
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 4

 To tell thee whence thou cam’st, of whom derived,
 Were shame enough to shame thee, wert thou not
 shameless.
 Thy father bears the type of King of Naples,
125 Of both the Sicils, and Jerusalem,
 Yet not so wealthy as an English yeoman.
 Hath that poor monarch taught thee to insult?
 It needs not, nor it boots thee not, proud queen,
 Unless the adage must be verified
130 That beggars mounted run their horse to death.
 ’Tis beauty that doth oft make women proud,
 But God He knows thy share thereof is small.
 ’Tis virtue that doth make them most admired;
 The contrary doth make thee wondered at.
135 ’Tis government that makes them seem divine;
 The want thereof makes thee abominable.
 Thou art as opposite to every good
 As the Antipodes are unto us
 Or as the south to the Septentrion.
140 O, tiger’s heart wrapped in a woman’s hide,
 How couldst thou drain the lifeblood of the child
 To bid the father wipe his eyes withal,
 And yet be seen to bear a woman’s face?
 Women are soft, mild, pitiful, and flexible;
145 Thou, stern, obdurate, flinty, rough, remorseless.
 Bidd’st thou me rage? Why, now thou hast thy wish.
 Wouldst have me weep? Why, now thou hast thy will;
 For raging wind blows up incessant showers,
 And when the rage allays, the rain begins.
150 These tears are my sweet Rutland’s obsequies,
 And every drop cries vengeance for his death
 ’Gainst thee, fell Clifford, and thee, false
 Frenchwoman!
NORTHUMBERLAND, aside 
 Beshrew me, but his passions moves me so
155 That hardly can I check my eyes from tears.

53
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 4

YORK 
 That face of his the hungry cannibals
 Would not have touched, would not have stained
 with blood;
 But you are more inhuman, more inexorable,
160 O, ten times more than tigers of Hyrcania.
 See, ruthless queen, a hapless father’s tears.
 This cloth thou dipped’st in blood of my sweet boy,
 And I with tears do wash the blood away.
He hands her the cloth.
 Keep thou the napkin and go boast of this;
165 And if thou tell’st the heavy story right,
 Upon my soul, the hearers will shed tears.
 Yea, even my foes will shed fast-falling tears
 And say “Alas, it was a piteous deed.”
He hands her the paper crown.
 There, take the crown and, with the crown, my
170 curse,
 And in thy need such comfort come to thee
 As now I reap at thy too cruel hand.—
 Hard-hearted Clifford, take me from the world,
 My soul to heaven, my blood upon your heads.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
175 Had he been slaughterman to all my kin,
 I should not for my life but weep with him
 To see how inly sorrow gripes his soul.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 What, weeping ripe, my Lord Northumberland?
 Think but upon the wrong he did us all,
180 And that will quickly dry thy melting tears.
CLIFFORD, stabbing York twice 
 Here’s for my oath; here’s for my father’s death!
QUEEN MARGARET, stabbing York 
 And here’s to right our gentle-hearted king.
YORK 
 Open thy gate of mercy, gracious God.

55
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 1. SC. 4

 My soul flies through these wounds to seek out Thee.
He dies.
QUEEN MARGARET 
185 Off with his head, and set it on York gates,
 So York may overlook the town of York.
Flourish. They exit, Soldiers carrying York’s body.


ACT 2
Scene 1
A march. Enter Edward, Richard, and their power,
all wearing the white rose.


EDWARD 
 I wonder how our princely father scaped,
 Or whether he be scaped away or no
 From Clifford’s and Northumberland’s pursuit.
 Had he been ta’en, we should have heard the news;
5 Had he been slain, we should have heard the news;
 Or had he scaped, methinks we should have heard
 The happy tidings of his good escape.
 How fares my brother? Why is he so sad?
RICHARD 
 I cannot joy until I be resolved
10 Where our right valiant father is become.
 I saw him in the battle range about
 And watched him how he singled Clifford forth.
 Methought he bore him in the thickest troop
 As doth a lion in a herd of neat,
15 Or as a bear encompassed round with dogs,
 Who having pinched a few and made them cry,
 The rest stand all aloof and bark at him;
 So fared our father with his enemies;
 So fled his enemies my warlike father.
20 Methinks ’tis prize enough to be his son.
 See how the morning opes her golden gates
59

61
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 1

 And takes her farewell of the glorious sun.
 How well resembles it the prime of youth,
 Trimmed like a younker, prancing to his love!
EDWARD 
25 Dazzle mine eyes, or do I see three suns?
RICHARD 
 Three glorious suns, each one a perfect sun,
 Not separated with the racking clouds
 But severed in a pale clear-shining sky.
 See, see, they join, embrace, and seem to kiss,
30 As if they vowed some league inviolable.
 Now are they but one lamp, one light, one sun;
 In this, the heaven figures some event.
EDWARD 
 ’Tis wondrous strange, the like yet never heard of.
 I think it cites us, brother, to the field,
35 That we, the sons of brave Plantagenet,
 Each one already blazing by our meeds,
 Should notwithstanding join our lights together
 And overshine the earth, as this the world.
 Whate’er it bodes, henceforward will I bear
40 Upon my target three fair shining suns.
RICHARD 
 Nay, bear three daughters: by your leave I speak it,
 You love the breeder better than the male.

Enter a Messenger, blowing.

 But what art thou whose heavy looks foretell
 Some dreadful story hanging on thy tongue?
MESSENGER 
45 Ah, one that was a woeful looker-on
 Whenas the noble Duke of York was slain,
 Your princely father and my loving lord.
EDWARD 
 O, speak no more, for I have heard too much!
63
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 1


RICHARD 
 Say how he died, for I will hear it all.
MESSENGER 
50 Environèd he was with many foes,
 And stood against them, as the hope of Troy
 Against the Greeks that would have entered Troy.
 But Hercules himself must yield to odds;
 And many strokes, though with a little axe,
55 Hews down and fells the hardest-timbered oak.
 By many hands your father was subdued,
 But only slaughtered by the ireful arm
 Of unrelenting Clifford and the Queen,
 Who crowned the gracious duke in high despite,
60 Laughed in his face; and when with grief he wept,
 The ruthless queen gave him to dry his cheeks
 A napkin steepèd in the harmless blood
 Of sweet young Rutland, by rough Clifford slain.
 And after many scorns, many foul taunts,
65 They took his head and on the gates of York
 They set the same, and there it doth remain,
 The saddest spectacle that e’er I viewed.He exits.
EDWARD 
 Sweet Duke of York, our prop to lean upon,
 Now thou art gone, we have no staff, no stay.
70 O Clifford, boist’rous Clifford, thou hast slain
 The flower of Europe for his chivalry;
 And treacherously hast thou vanquished him,
 For hand to hand he would have vanquished thee.
 Now my soul’s palace is become a prison;
75 Ah, would she break from hence, that this my body
 Might in the ground be closèd up in rest,
 For never henceforth shall I joy again.
 Never, O never, shall I see more joy!He weeps.
RICHARD 
 I cannot weep, for all my body’s moisture
80 Scarce serves to quench my furnace-burning heart;

65
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 1

 Nor can my tongue unload my heart’s great burden,
 For selfsame wind that I should speak withal
 Is kindling coals that fires all my breast
 And burns me up with flames that tears would
85 quench.
 To weep is to make less the depth of grief:
 Tears, then, for babes; blows and revenge for me.
 Richard, I bear thy name. I’ll venge thy death
 Or die renownèd by attempting it.
EDWARD 
90 His name that valiant duke hath left with thee;
 His dukedom and his chair with me is left.
RICHARD 
 Nay, if thou be that princely eagle’s bird,
 Show thy descent by gazing ’gainst the sun;
 For “chair” and “dukedom,” “throne” and
95 “kingdom” say;
 Either that is thine or else thou wert not his.

March. Enter Warwick, Marquess Montague, and their
army, all wearing the white rose.


WARWICK 
 How now, fair lords? What fare, what news abroad?
RICHARD 
 Great lord of Warwick, if we should recount
 Our baleful news, and at each word’s deliverance
100 Stab poniards in our flesh till all were told,
 The words would add more anguish than the wounds.
 O valiant lord, the Duke of York is slain.
EDWARD 
 O Warwick, Warwick, that Plantagenet
 Which held thee dearly as his soul’s redemption
105 Is by the stern Lord Clifford done to death.
WARWICK 
 Ten days ago I drowned these news in tears.
 And now to add more measure to your woes,

67
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 1

 I come to tell you things sith then befall’n.
 After the bloody fray at Wakefield fought,
110 Where your brave father breathed his latest gasp,
 Tidings, as swiftly as the posts could run,
 Were brought me of your loss and his depart.
 I, then in London, keeper of the King,
 Mustered my soldiers, gathered flocks of friends,
115 Marched toward Saint Albans to intercept the
 Queen,
 Bearing the King in my behalf along;
 For by my scouts I was advertisèd
 That she was coming with a full intent
120 To dash our late decree in Parliament
 Touching King Henry’s oath and your succession.
 Short tale to make, we at Saint Albans met,
 Our battles joined, and both sides fiercely fought.
 But whether ’twas the coldness of the King,
125 Who looked full gently on his warlike queen,
 That robbed my soldiers of their heated spleen,
 Or whether ’twas report of her success
 Or more than common fear of Clifford’s rigor,
 Who thunders to his captives blood and death,
130 I cannot judge; but to conclude with truth,
 Their weapons like to lightning came and went;
 Our soldiers’, like the night owl’s lazy flight
 Or like an idle thresher with a flail,
 Fell gently down, as if they struck their friends.
135 I cheered them up with justice of our cause,
 With promise of high pay and great rewards,
 But all in vain; they had no heart to fight,
 And we, in them, no hope to win the day,
 So that we fled: the King unto the Queen;
140 Lord George your brother, Norfolk, and myself
 In haste, posthaste, are come to join with you;
 For in the Marches here we heard you were,
 Making another head to fight again.

69
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 1

EDWARD 
 Where is the Duke of Norfolk, gentle Warwick?
145 And when came George from Burgundy to England?
WARWICK 
 Some six miles off the Duke is with the soldiers,
 And, for your brother, he was lately sent
 From your kind aunt, Duchess of Burgundy,
 With aid of soldiers to this needful war.
RICHARD 
150 ’Twas odds, belike, when valiant Warwick fled.
 Oft have I heard his praises in pursuit,
 But ne’er till now his scandal of retire.
WARWICK 
 Nor now my scandal, Richard, dost thou hear?
 For thou shalt know this strong right hand of mine
155 Can pluck the diadem from faint Henry’s head
 And wring the awful scepter from his fist,
 Were he as famous and as bold in war
 As he is famed for mildness, peace, and prayer.
RICHARD 
 I know it well, Lord Warwick; blame me not.
160 ’Tis love I bear thy glories make me speak.
 But in this troublous time, what’s to be done?
 Shall we go throw away our coats of steel
 And wrap our bodies in black mourning gowns,
 Numb’ring our Ave Marys with our beads?
165 Or shall we on the helmets of our foes
 Tell our devotion with revengeful arms?
 If for the last, say “Ay,” and to it, lords.
WARWICK 
 Why, therefore Warwick came to seek you out,
 And therefore comes my brother Montague.
170 Attend me, lords: the proud insulting queen,
 With Clifford and the haught Northumberland
 And of their feather many more proud birds,
 Have wrought the easy-melting king like wax.

71
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 1

 He swore consent to your succession,
175 His oath enrollèd in the Parliament.
 And now to London all the crew are gone
 To frustrate both his oath and what beside
 May make against the house of Lancaster.
 Their power, I think, is thirty thousand strong.
180 Now, if the help of Norfolk and myself,
 With all the friends that thou, brave Earl of March,
 Amongst the loving Welshmen canst procure,
 Will but amount to five and twenty thousand,
 Why, via, to London will we march,
185 And once again bestride our foaming steeds,
 And once again cry “Charge!” upon our foes,
 But never once again turn back and fly.
RICHARD 
 Ay, now methinks I hear great Warwick speak.
 Ne’er may he live to see a sunshine day
190 That cries “Retire!” if Warwick bid him stay.
EDWARD 
 Lord Warwick, on thy shoulder will I lean,
 And when thou fail’st—as God forbid the hour!—
 Must Edward fall, which peril heaven forfend.
WARWICK 
 No longer Earl of March, but Duke of York;
195 The next degree is England’s royal throne:
 For King of England shalt thou be proclaimed
 In every borough as we pass along,
 And he that throws not up his cap for joy
 Shall for the fault make forfeit of his head.
200 King Edward, valiant Richard, Montague,
 Stay we no longer dreaming of renown,
 But sound the trumpets and about our task.
RICHARD 
 Then, Clifford, were thy heart as hard as steel,
 As thou hast shown it flinty by thy deeds,
205 I come to pierce it or to give thee mine.

73
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 2

EDWARD 
 Then strike up drums! God and Saint George for us!

Enter a Messenger.

WARWICK How now, what news?
MESSENGER 
 The Duke of Norfolk sends you word by me,
 The Queen is coming with a puissant host,
210 And craves your company for speedy counsel.
WARWICK 
 Why, then it sorts. Brave warriors, let’s away!
They all exit.


Scene 2
Flourish. Enter King Henry, Queen Margaret,
Clifford, Northumberland, and young Prince Edward,
all wearing the red rose with Drum and Trumpets,
the head of York fixed above them.


QUEEN MARGARET, to King Henry 
 Welcome, my lord, to this brave town of York.
 Yonder’s the head of that arch-enemy
 That sought to be encompassed with your crown.
 Doth not the object cheer your heart, my lord?
KING HENRY 
5 Ay, as the rocks cheer them that fear their wrack!
 To see this sight, it irks my very soul.
 Withhold revenge, dear God! ’Tis not my fault,
 Nor wittingly have I infringed my vow.
CLIFFORD 
 My gracious liege, this too much lenity
10 And harmful pity must be laid aside.
 To whom do lions cast their gentle looks?
 Not to the beast that would usurp their den.
 Whose hand is that the forest bear doth lick?

75
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 2

 Not his that spoils her young before her face.
15 Who scapes the lurking serpent’s mortal sting?
 Not he that sets his foot upon her back.
 The smallest worm will turn, being trodden on,
 And doves will peck in safeguard of their brood.
 Ambitious York did level at thy crown,
20 Thou smiling while he knit his angry brows.
 He, but a duke, would have his son a king
 And raise his issue like a loving sire;
 Thou being a king, blest with a goodly son,
 Didst yield consent to disinherit him,
25 Which argued thee a most unloving father.
 Unreasonable creatures feed their young;
 And though man’s face be fearful to their eyes,
 Yet in protection of their tender ones,
 Who hath not seen them, even with those wings
30 Which sometime they have used with fearful flight,
 Make war with him that climbed unto their nest,
 Offering their own lives in their young’s defense?
 For shame, my liege, make them your precedent.
 Were it not pity that this goodly boy
35 Should lose his birthright by his father’s fault,
 And long hereafter say unto his child
 “What my great-grandfather and grandsire got,
 My careless father fondly gave away”?
 Ah, what a shame were this! Look on the boy,
40 And let his manly face, which promiseth
 Successful fortune, steel thy melting heart
 To hold thine own and leave thine own with him.
KING HENRY 
 Full well hath Clifford played the orator,
 Inferring arguments of mighty force.
45 But, Clifford, tell me, didst thou never hear
 That things ill got had ever bad success?
 And happy always was it for that son
 Whose father for his hoarding went to hell?

77
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 2

 I’ll leave my son my virtuous deeds behind,
50 And would my father had left me no more;
 For all the rest is held at such a rate
 As brings a thousandfold more care to keep
 Than in possession any jot of pleasure.
 Ah, cousin York, would thy best friends did know
55 How it doth grieve me that thy head is here.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 My lord, cheer up your spirits; our foes are nigh,
 And this soft courage makes your followers faint.
 You promised knighthood to our forward son.
 Unsheathe your sword and dub him presently.—
60 Edward, kneel down.He kneels.
KING HENRY, dubbing him knight 
 Edward Plantagenet, arise a knight,
 And learn this lesson: draw thy sword in right.
PRINCE EDWARD, rising 
 My gracious father, by your kingly leave,
 I’ll draw it as apparent to the crown
65 And in that quarrel use it to the death.
CLIFFORD 
 Why, that is spoken like a toward prince.

Enter a Messenger.

MESSENGER 
 Royal commanders, be in readiness,
 For with a band of thirty thousand men
 Comes Warwick backing of the Duke of York,
70 And in the towns as they do march along
 Proclaims him king, and many fly to him.
 Deraign your battle, for they are at hand.He exits.
CLIFFORD 
 I would your Highness would depart the field.
 The Queen hath best success when you are absent.
QUEEN MARGARET 
75 Ay, good my lord, and leave us to our fortune.

79
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 2

KING HENRY 
 Why, that’s my fortune too; therefore I’ll stay.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
 Be it with resolution, then, to fight.
PRINCE EDWARD 
 My royal father, cheer these noble lords
 And hearten those that fight in your defense.
80 Unsheathe your sword, good father; cry “Saint
 George!”

March. Enter Edward, Warwick, Richard,
George, Norfolk, Montague, and Soldiers,
all wearing the white rose.


EDWARD 
 Now, perjured Henry, wilt thou kneel for grace
 And set thy diadem upon my head,
 Or bide the mortal fortune of the field?
QUEEN MARGARET 
85 Go rate thy minions, proud insulting boy.
 Becomes it thee to be thus bold in terms
 Before thy sovereign and thy lawful king?
EDWARD 
 I am his king, and he should bow his knee.
 I was adopted heir by his consent.
90 Since when, his oath is broke; for, as I hear,
 You that are king, though he do wear the crown,
 Have caused him, by new act of Parliament,
 To blot out me and put his own son in.
CLIFFORD And reason too:
95 Who should succeed the father but the son?
RICHARD 
 Are you there, butcher? O, I cannot speak!
CLIFFORD 
 Ay, crookback, here I stand to answer thee,
 Or any he, the proudest of thy sort.

81
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 2

RICHARD 
 ’Twas you that killed young Rutland, was it not?
CLIFFORD 
100 Ay, and old York, and yet not satisfied.
RICHARD 
 For God’s sake, lords, give signal to the fight!
WARWICK 
 What sayst thou, Henry? Wilt thou yield the crown?
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Why, how now, long-tongued Warwick, dare you
 speak?
105 When you and I met at Saint Albans last,
 Your legs did better service than your hands.
WARWICK 
 Then ’twas my turn to fly, and now ’tis thine.
CLIFFORD 
 You said so much before, and yet you fled.
WARWICK 
 ’Twas not your valor, Clifford, drove me thence.
NORTHUMBERLAND 
110 No, nor your manhood that durst make you stay.
RICHARD 
 Northumberland, I hold thee reverently.—
 Break off the parley, for scarce I can refrain
 The execution of my big-swoll’n heart
 Upon that Clifford, that cruel child-killer.
CLIFFORD 
115 I slew thy father; call’st thou him a child?
RICHARD 
 Ay, like a dastard and a treacherous coward,
 As thou didst kill our tender brother Rutland.
 But ere sunset I’ll make thee curse the deed.
KING HENRY 
 Have done with words, my lords, and hear me
120 speak.

83
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 2

QUEEN MARGARET 
 Defy them, then, or else hold close thy lips.
KING HENRY 
 I prithee, give no limits to my tongue.
 I am a king and privileged to speak.
CLIFFORD 
 My liege, the wound that bred this meeting here
125 Cannot be cured by words; therefore, be still.
RICHARD 
 Then, executioner, unsheathe thy sword.
 By Him that made us all, I am resolved
 That Clifford’s manhood lies upon his tongue.
EDWARD 
 Say, Henry, shall I have my right or no?
130 A thousand men have broke their fasts today
 That ne’er shall dine unless thou yield the crown.
WARWICK 
 If thou deny, their blood upon thy head,
 For York in justice puts his armor on.
PRINCE EDWARD 
 If that be right which Warwick says is right,
135 There is no wrong, but everything is right.
RICHARD 
 Whoever got thee, there thy mother stands,
 For well I wot thou hast thy mother’s tongue.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 But thou art neither like thy sire nor dam,
 But like a foul misshapen stigmatic,
140 Marked by the Destinies to be avoided,
 As venom toads or lizards’ dreadful stings.
RICHARD 
 Iron of Naples, hid with English gilt,
 Whose father bears the title of a king,
 As if a channel should be called the sea,

85
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 2

145 Sham’st thou not, knowing whence thou art
 extraught,
 To let thy tongue detect thy baseborn heart?
EDWARD 
 A wisp of straw were worth a thousand crowns
 To make this shameless callet know herself.—
150 Helen of Greece was fairer far than thou,
 Although thy husband may be Menelaus;
 And ne’er was Agamemnon’s brother wronged
 By that false woman as this king by thee.
 His father reveled in the heart of France,
155 And tamed the King, and made the Dauphin stoop;
 And had he matched according to his state,
 He might have kept that glory to this day.
 But when he took a beggar to his bed
 And graced thy poor sire with his bridal day,
160 Even then that sunshine brewed a shower for him
 That washed his father’s fortunes forth of France
 And heaped sedition on his crown at home.
 For what hath broached this tumult but thy pride?
 Hadst thou been meek, our title still had slept,
165 And we, in pity of the gentle king,
 Had slipped our claim until another age.
GEORGE 
 But when we saw our sunshine made thy spring,
 And that thy summer bred us no increase,
 We set the axe to thy usurping root;
170 And though the edge hath something hit ourselves,
 Yet know thou, since we have begun to strike,
 We’ll never leave till we have hewn thee down
 Or bathed thy growing with our heated bloods.
EDWARD 
 And in this resolution, I defy thee,
175 Not willing any longer conference,
 Since thou denied’st the gentle king to speak.—

87
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 3

 Sound, trumpets! Let our bloody colors wave;
 And either victory or else a grave!
QUEEN MARGARET Stay, Edward!
EDWARD 
180 No, wrangling woman, we’ll no longer stay.
 These words will cost ten thousand lives this day.
They all exit.


Scene 3
Alarum. Excursions. Enter Warwick,
wearing the white rose.


WARWICK, lying down 
 Forspent with toil, as runners with a race,
 I lay me down a little while to breathe,
 For strokes received and many blows repaid
 Have robbed my strong-knit sinews of their strength;
5 And spite of spite, needs must I rest awhile.

Enter Edward, wearing the white rose, running.

EDWARD 
 Smile, gentle heaven, or strike, ungentle death,
 For this world frowns and Edward’s sun is clouded.

Enter George, wearing the white rose.

WARWICK, standing 
 How now, my lord, what hap? What hope of good?
GEORGE 
 Our hap is loss, our hope but sad despair;
10 Our ranks are broke, and ruin follows us.
 What counsel give you? Whither shall we fly?
EDWARD 
 Bootless is flight; they follow us with wings,
 And weak we are and cannot shun pursuit.

89
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 3

Enter Richard, wearing the white rose.

RICHARD 
 Ah, Warwick, why hast thou withdrawn thyself?
15 Thy brother’s blood the thirsty earth hath drunk,
 Broached with the steely point of Clifford’s lance,
 And in the very pangs of death he cried,
 Like to a dismal clangor heard from far,
 “Warwick, revenge! Brother, revenge my death!”
20 So, underneath the belly of their steeds,
 That stained their fetlocks in his smoking blood,
 The noble gentleman gave up the ghost.
WARWICK 
 Then let the earth be drunken with our blood!
 I’ll kill my horse because I will not fly.
25 Why stand we like soft-hearted women here,
 Wailing our losses whiles the foe doth rage,
 And look upon, as if the tragedy
 Were played in jest by counterfeiting actors?
He kneels.
 Here on my knee I vow to God above
30 I’ll never pause again, never stand still,
 Till either death hath closed these eyes of mine
 Or Fortune given me measure of revenge.
EDWARD 
 O Warwick, I do bend my knee with thine,
 And in this vow do chain my soul to thine
He kneels.
35 And, ere my knee rise from the Earth’s cold face,
 I throw my hands, mine eyes, my heart to Thee,
 Thou setter up and plucker down of kings,
 Beseeching Thee, if with Thy will it stands
 That to my foes this body must be prey,
40 Yet that Thy brazen gates of heaven may ope
 And give sweet passage to my sinful soul.
Edward and Warwick stand.

91
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 4

 Now, lords, take leave until we meet again,
 Where’er it be, in heaven or in Earth.
RICHARD 
 Brother, give me thy hand.—And, gentle Warwick,
45 Let me embrace thee in my weary arms.
 I that did never weep now melt with woe
 That winter should cut off our springtime so.
WARWICK 
 Away, away! Once more, sweet lords, farewell.
GEORGE 
 Yet let us all together to our troops
50 And give them leave to fly that will not stay,
 And call them pillars that will stand to us;
 And, if we thrive, promise them such rewards
 As victors wear at the Olympian Games.
 This may plant courage in their quailing breasts,
55 For yet is hope of life and victory.
 Forslow no longer; make we hence amain.
They exit.


Scene 4
Excursions. Enter, at separate doors, Richard wearing
the white rose, and Clifford, wearing the red rose.


RICHARD 
 Now, Clifford, I have singled thee alone.
 Suppose this arm is for the Duke of York,
 And this for Rutland, both bound to revenge,
 Wert thou environed with a brazen wall.
CLIFFORD 
5 Now, Richard, I am with thee here alone.
 This is the hand that stabbed thy father York,
 And this the hand that slew thy brother Rutland,
 And here’s the heart that triumphs in their death
 And cheers these hands that slew thy sire and brother

93
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 5

10 To execute the like upon thyself.
 And so, have at thee!

They fight; Warwick comes; Clifford flies.

RICHARD 
 Nay, Warwick, single out some other chase,
 For I myself will hunt this wolf to death.
They exit.


Scene 5
Alarum. Enter King Henry alone, wearing the red rose.

KING HENRY 
 This battle fares like to the morning’s war,
 When dying clouds contend with growing light,
 What time the shepherd, blowing of his nails,
 Can neither call it perfect day nor night.
5 Now sways it this way, like a mighty sea
 Forced by the tide to combat with the wind;
 Now sways it that way, like the selfsame sea
 Forced to retire by fury of the wind.
 Sometime the flood prevails, and then the wind;
10 Now one the better, then another best,
 Both tugging to be victors, breast to breast,
 Yet neither conqueror nor conquerèd.
 So is the equal poise of this fell war.
 Here on this molehill will I sit me down.
He sits on a small prominence.
15 To whom God will, there be the victory;
 For Margaret my queen and Clifford too
 Have chid me from the battle, swearing both
 They prosper best of all when I am thence.
 Would I were dead, if God’s good will were so,
20 For what is in this world but grief and woe?
 O God! Methinks it were a happy life

95
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 5

 To be no better than a homely swain,
 To sit upon a hill as I do now,
 To carve out dials quaintly, point by point,
25 Thereby to see the minutes how they run:
 How many makes the hour full complete,
 How many hours brings about the day,
 How many days will finish up the year,
 How many years a mortal man may live.
30 When this is known, then to divide the times:
 So many hours must I tend my flock,
 So many hours must I take my rest,
 So many hours must I contemplate,
 So many hours must I sport myself,
35 So many days my ewes have been with young,
 So many weeks ere the poor fools will ean,
 So many years ere I shall shear the fleece;
 So minutes, hours, days, months, and years,
 Passed over to the end they were created,
40 Would bring white hairs unto a quiet grave.
 Ah, what a life were this! How sweet, how lovely!
 Gives not the hawthorn bush a sweeter shade
 To shepherds looking on their silly sheep
 Than doth a rich embroidered canopy
45 To kings that fear their subjects’ treachery?
 O yes, it doth, a thousandfold it doth.
 And to conclude, the shepherd’s homely curds,
 His cold thin drink out of his leather bottle,
 His wonted sleep under a fresh tree’s shade,
50 All which secure and sweetly he enjoys,
 Is far beyond a prince’s delicates—
 His viands sparkling in a golden cup,
 His body couchèd in a curious bed—
 When care, mistrust, and treason waits on him.

Alarum. Enter at one door a Son that hath killed his
Father, carrying the body.



97
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 5

SON 
55 Ill blows the wind that profits nobody.
 This man, whom hand to hand I slew in fight,
 May be possessèd with some store of crowns,
 And I, that haply take them from him now,
 May yet ere night yield both my life and them
60 To some man else, as this dead man doth me.
 Who’s this? O God! It is my father’s face,
 Whom in this conflict I unwares have killed.
 O heavy times, begetting such events!
 From London by the King was I pressed forth.
65 My father, being the Earl of Warwick’s man,
 Came on the part of York, pressed by his master.
 And I, who at his hands received my life,
 Have by my hands of life bereavèd him.
 Pardon me, God, I knew not what I did;
70 And pardon, father, for I knew not thee.
 My tears shall wipe away these bloody marks,
 And no more words till they have flowed their fill.
He weeps.
KING HENRY 
 O piteous spectacle! O bloody times!
 Whiles lions war and battle for their dens,
75 Poor harmless lambs abide their enmity.
 Weep, wretched man. I’ll aid thee tear for tear,
 And let our hearts and eyes, like civil war,
 Be blind with tears and break, o’ercharged with grief.

Enter at another door a Father that hath killed his Son,
bearing of his Son’s body.


FATHER 
 Thou that so stoutly hath resisted me,
80 Give me thy gold, if thou hast any gold,
 For I have bought it with an hundred blows.
 But let me see: is this our foeman’s face?
 Ah, no, no, no, it is mine only son!

99
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 5

 Ah, boy, if any life be left in thee,
85 Throw up thine eye! See, see, what showers arise,
 Blown with the windy tempest of my heart
 Upon thy wounds, that kills mine eye and heart!
 O, pity God this miserable age!
 What stratagems, how fell, how butcherly,
90 Erroneous, mutinous, and unnatural
 This deadly quarrel daily doth beget!
 O, boy, thy father gave thee life too soon,
 And hath bereft thee of thy life too late!
KING HENRY 
 Woe above woe, grief more than common grief!
95 O, that my death would stay these ruthful deeds!
 O pity, pity, gentle heaven, pity!
 The red rose and the white are on his face,
 The fatal colors of our striving houses;
 The one his purple blood right well resembles,
100 The other his pale cheeks methinks presenteth.
 Wither one rose and let the other flourish;
 If you contend, a thousand lives must wither.
SON 
 How will my mother for a father’s death
 Take on with me and ne’er be satisfied!
FATHER 
105 How will my wife for slaughter of my son
 Shed seas of tears and ne’er be satisfied!
KING HENRY 
 How will the country for these woeful chances
 Misthink the King and not be satisfied!
SON 
 Was ever son so rued a father’s death?
FATHER 
110 Was ever father so bemoaned his son?
KING HENRY 
 Was ever king so grieved for subjects’ woe?
 Much is your sorrow, mine ten times so much.

101
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 5

SON 
 I’ll bear thee hence, where I may weep my fill.
He exits, bearing the body.
FATHER 
 These arms of mine shall be thy winding-sheet;
115 My heart, sweet boy, shall be thy sepulcher,
 For from my heart thine image ne’er shall go.
 My sighing breast shall be thy funeral bell;
 And so obsequious will thy father be
 E’en for the loss of thee, having no more,
120 As Priam was for all his valiant sons.
 I’ll bear thee hence, and let them fight that will,
 For I have murdered where I should not kill.
He exits, bearing the body.
KING HENRY 
 Sad-hearted men, much overgone with care,
 Here sits a king more woeful than you are.

Alarums. Excursions. Enter Queen Margaret, Prince
Edward, and Exeter, all wearing the red rose.


PRINCE EDWARD 
125 Fly, father, fly, for all your friends are fled,
 And Warwick rages like a chafèd bull.
 Away, for Death doth hold us in pursuit.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Mount you, my lord; towards Berwick post amain.
 Edward and Richard, like a brace of greyhounds
130 Having the fearful flying hare in sight,
 With fiery eyes sparkling for very wrath
 And bloody steel grasped in their ireful hands,
 Are at our backs, and therefore hence amain.
EXETER 
 Away, for Vengeance comes along with them.
135 Nay, stay not to expostulate, make speed;
 Or else come after; I’ll away before.

103
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 6

KING HENRY 
 Nay, take me with thee, good sweet Exeter;
 Not that I fear to stay, but love to go
 Whither the Queen intends. Forward, away!
They exit.


Scene 6
A loud alarum. Enter Clifford,
wearing the red rose, wounded.


CLIFFORD 
 Here burns my candle out; ay, here it dies,
 Which whiles it lasted gave King Henry light.
 O Lancaster, I fear thy overthrow
 More than my body’s parting with my soul!
5 My love and fear glued many friends to thee;
 And now I fall, thy tough commixtures melts,
 Impairing Henry, strength’ning misproud York;
 And whither fly the gnats but to the sun?
 And who shines now but Henry’s enemies?
10 O Phoebus, hadst thou never given consent
 That Phaëton should check thy fiery steeds,
 Thy burning car never had scorched the Earth!
 And Henry, hadst thou swayed as kings should do,
 Or as thy father and his father did,
15 Giving no ground unto the house of York,
 They never then had sprung like summer flies;
 I and ten thousand in this luckless realm
 Had left no mourning widows for our death,
 And thou this day hadst kept thy chair in peace.
20 For what doth cherish weeds but gentle air?
 And what makes robbers bold but too much lenity?
 Bootless are plaints, and cureless are my wounds;
 No way to fly, no strength to hold out flight.
 The foe is merciless and will not pity,

105
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 6

25 For at their hands I have deserved no pity.
 The air hath got into my deadly wounds,
 And much effuse of blood doth make me faint.
 Come, York and Richard, Warwick and the rest.
 I stabbed your fathers’ bosoms; split my breast.
He faints.

Alarum and retreat. Enter Edward, Warwick,
Richard, and Soldiers, Montague, and George,
all wearing the white rose.


EDWARD 
30 Now breathe we, lords. Good fortune bids us pause
 And smooth the frowns of war with peaceful looks.
 Some troops pursue the bloody-minded queen
 That led calm Henry, though he were a king,
 As doth a sail filled with a fretting gust
35 Command an argosy to stem the waves.
 But think you, lords, that Clifford fled with them?
WARWICK 
 No, ’tis impossible he should escape,
 For, though before his face I speak the words,
 Your brother Richard marked him for the grave,
40 And wheresoe’er he is, he’s surely dead.
Clifford groans, and dies.
RICHARD 
 Whose soul is that which takes her heavy leave?
 A deadly groan, like life and death’s departing.
EDWARD 
 See who it is; and, now the battle’s ended,
 If friend or foe, let him be gently used.
RICHARD 
45 Revoke that doom of mercy, for ’tis Clifford,
 Who not contented that he lopped the branch
 In hewing Rutland when his leaves put forth,
 But set his murd’ring knife unto the root

107
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 6

 From whence that tender spray did sweetly spring,
50 I mean our princely father, Duke of York.
WARWICK 
 From off the gates of York fetch down the head,
 Your father’s head, which Clifford placèd there;
 Instead whereof let this supply the room.
 Measure for measure must be answerèd.
EDWARD 
55 Bring forth that fatal screech owl to our house
 That nothing sung but death to us and ours;
 Now death shall stop his dismal threat’ning sound,
 And his ill-boding tongue no more shall speak.
WARWICK 
 I think his understanding is bereft.—
60 Speak, Clifford, dost thou know who speaks to
 thee?—
 Dark cloudy death o’ershades his beams of life,
 And he nor sees nor hears us what we say.
RICHARD 
 O, would he did—and so, perhaps, he doth!
65 ’Tis but his policy to counterfeit,
 Because he would avoid such bitter taunts
 Which in the time of death he gave our father.
GEORGE 
 If so thou think’st, vex him with eager words.
RICHARD 
 Clifford, ask mercy and obtain no grace.
EDWARD 
70 Clifford, repent in bootless penitence.
WARWICK 
 Clifford, devise excuses for thy faults.
GEORGE 
 While we devise fell tortures for thy faults.
RICHARD 
 Thou didst love York, and I am son to York.

109
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 6

EDWARD 
 Thou pitied’st Rutland; I will pity thee.
GEORGE 
75 Where’s Captain Margaret to fence you now?
WARWICK 
 They mock thee, Clifford; swear as thou wast wont.
RICHARD 
 What, not an oath? Nay, then, the world goes hard
 When Clifford cannot spare his friends an oath.
 I know by that he’s dead; and, by my soul,
80 If this right hand would buy but two hours’ life
 That I in all despite might rail at him,
 This hand should chop it off, and with the issuing
 blood
 Stifle the villain whose unstaunchèd thirst
85 York and young Rutland could not satisfy.
WARWICK 
 Ay, but he’s dead. Off with the traitor’s head,
 And rear it in the place your father’s stands.
 And now to London with triumphant march,
 There to be crownèd England’s royal king,
90 From whence shall Warwick cut the sea to France
 And ask the Lady Bona for thy queen;
 So shalt thou sinew both these lands together,
 And having France thy friend, thou shalt not dread
 The scattered foe that hopes to rise again;
95 For though they cannot greatly sting to hurt,
 Yet look to have them buzz to offend thine ears.
 First will I see the coronation,
 And then to Brittany I’ll cross the sea
 To effect this marriage, so it please my lord.
EDWARD 
100 Even as thou wilt, sweet Warwick, let it be;
 For in thy shoulder do I build my seat,
 And never will I undertake the thing
 Wherein thy counsel and consent is wanting.—

111
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 2. SC. 6

 Richard, I will create thee Duke of Gloucester,
105 And George, of Clarence. Warwick as ourself
 Shall do and undo as him pleaseth best.
RICHARD 
 Let me be Duke of Clarence, George of Gloucester,
 For Gloucester’s dukedom is too ominous.
WARWICK 
 Tut, that’s a foolish observation.
110 Richard, be Duke of Gloucester. Now to London,
 To see these honors in possession.
They exit, with Clifford’s body.


ACT 3
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
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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.




123
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 2

Scene 2
Enter King Edward, Richard, Duke of Gloucester,
George, Duke of Clarence, Lady Grey,
and Attendants.


KING EDWARD 
 Brother of Gloucester, at Saint Albans field
 This lady’s husband, Sir Richard Grey, was slain,
 His land then seized on by the conqueror.
 Her suit is now to repossess those lands,
5 Which we in justice cannot well deny,
 Because in quarrel of the house of York
 The worthy gentleman did lose his life.
RICHARD 
 Your Highness shall do well to grant her suit;
 It were dishonor to deny it her.
KING EDWARD 
10 It were no less, but yet I’ll make a pause.
RICHARD, aside to Clarence Yea, is it so?
 I see the lady hath a thing to grant
 Before the King will grant her humble suit.
CLARENCE, formerly GEORGE, aside to Richard 
 He knows the game; how true he keeps the wind!
RICHARD, aside to Clarence 15Silence!
KING EDWARD 
 Widow, we will consider of your suit,
 And come some other time to know our mind.
LADY GREY 
 Right gracious lord, I cannot brook delay.
 May it please your Highness to resolve me now,
20 And what your pleasure is shall satisfy me.
RICHARD, aside to Clarence 
 Ay, widow? Then I’ll warrant you all your lands,
 An if what pleases him shall pleasure you.
 Fight closer, or, good faith, you’ll catch a blow.

125
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 2

CLARENCE, aside to Richard 
 I fear her not, unless she chance to fall.
RICHARD, aside to Clarence 
25 God forbid that, for he’ll take vantages.
KING EDWARD 
 How many children hast thou, widow? Tell me.
CLARENCE, aside to Richard 
 I think he means to beg a child of her.
RICHARD, aside to Clarence 
 Nay, then, whip me; he’ll rather give her two.
LADY GREY Three, my most gracious lord.
RICHARD, aside to Clarence 
30 You shall have four if you’ll be ruled by him.
KING EDWARD 
 ’Twere pity they should lose their father’s lands.
LADY GREY 
 Be pitiful, dread lord, and grant it then.
KING EDWARD 
 Lords, give us leave. I’ll try this widow’s wit.
Richard and Clarence stand aside.
RICHARD, aside to Clarence 
 Ay, good leave have you, for you will have leave
35 Till youth take leave and leave you to the crutch.
KING EDWARD 
 Now tell me, madam, do you love your children?
LADY GREY 
 Ay, full as dearly as I love myself.
KING EDWARD 
 And would you not do much to do them good?
LADY GREY 
 To do them good I would sustain some harm.
KING EDWARD 
40 Then get your husband’s lands to do them good.
LADY GREY 
 Therefore I came unto your Majesty.

127
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 2

KING EDWARD 
 I’ll tell you how these lands are to be got.
LADY GREY 
 So shall you bind me to your Highness’ service.
KING EDWARD 
 What service wilt thou do me if I give them?
LADY GREY 
45 What you command that rests in me to do.
KING EDWARD 
 But you will take exceptions to my boon.
LADY GREY 
 No, gracious lord, except I cannot do it.
KING EDWARD 
 Ay, but thou canst do what I mean to ask.
LADY GREY 
 Why, then, I will do what your Grace commands.
RICHARD, aside to Clarence 
50 He plies her hard, and much rain wears the marble.
CLARENCE, aside to Richard 
 As red as fire! Nay, then, her wax must melt.
LADY GREY 
 Why stops my lord? Shall I not hear my task?
KING EDWARD 
 An easy task; ’tis but to love a king.
LADY GREY 
 That’s soon performed because I am a subject.
KING EDWARD 
55 Why, then, thy husband’s lands I freely give thee.
LADY GREY 
 I take my leave with many thousand thanks.
She curtsies and begins to exit.
RICHARD, aside to Clarence 
 The match is made; she seals it with a cursy.
KING EDWARD 
 But stay thee; ’tis the fruits of love I mean.

129
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 2

LADY GREY 
 The fruits of love I mean, my loving liege.
KING EDWARD 
60 Ay, but, I fear me, in another sense.
 What love, think’st thou, I sue so much to get?
LADY GREY 
 My love till death, my humble thanks, my prayers,
 That love which virtue begs and virtue grants.
KING EDWARD 
 No, by my troth, I did not mean such love.
LADY GREY 
65 Why, then, you mean not as I thought you did.
KING EDWARD 
 But now you partly may perceive my mind.
LADY GREY 
 My mind will never grant what I perceive
 Your Highness aims at, if I aim aright.
KING EDWARD 
 To tell thee plain, I aim to lie with thee.
LADY GREY 
70 To tell you plain, I had rather lie in prison.
KING EDWARD 
 Why, then, thou shalt not have thy husband’s lands.
LADY GREY 
 Why, then, mine honesty shall be my dower,
 For by that loss I will not purchase them.
KING EDWARD 
 Therein thou wrong’st thy children mightily.
LADY GREY 
75 Herein your Highness wrongs both them and me.
 But, mighty lord, this merry inclination
 Accords not with the sadness of my suit.
 Please you dismiss me either with ay or no.
KING EDWARD 
 Ay, if thou wilt say “ay” to my request;
80 No, if thou dost say “no” to my demand.

131
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 2

LADY GREY 
 Then no, my lord; my suit is at an end.
RICHARD, aside to Clarence 
 The widow likes him not; she knits her brows.
CLARENCE, aside to Richard 
 He is the bluntest wooer in Christendom.
KING EDWARD, aside 
 Her looks doth argue her replete with modesty;
85 Her words doth show her wit incomparable;
 All her perfections challenge sovereignty.
 One way or other, she is for a king,
 And she shall be my love or else my queen.—
 Say that King Edward take thee for his queen?
LADY GREY 
90 ’Tis better said than done, my gracious lord.
 I am a subject fit to jest withal,
 But far unfit to be a sovereign.
KING EDWARD 
 Sweet widow, by my state I swear to thee
 I speak no more than what my soul intends,
95 And that is, to enjoy thee for my love.
LADY GREY 
 And that is more than I will yield unto.
 I know I am too mean to be your queen
 And yet too good to be your concubine.
KING EDWARD 
 You cavil, widow; I did mean my queen.
LADY GREY 
100 ’Twill grieve your Grace my sons should call you
 father.
KING EDWARD 
 No more than when my daughters call thee mother.
 Thou art a widow and thou hast some children,
 And, by God’s mother, I, being but a bachelor,
105 Have other some. Why, ’tis a happy thing
 To be the father unto many sons.
 Answer no more, for thou shalt be my queen.

133
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 2

RICHARD, aside to Clarence 
 The ghostly father now hath done his shrift.
CLARENCE, aside to Richard 
 When he was made a shriver, ’twas for shift.
KING EDWARD 
110 Brothers, you muse what chat we two have had.
RICHARD 
 The widow likes it not, for she looks very sad.
KING EDWARD 
 You’d think it strange if I should marry her.
CLARENCE 
 To who, my lord?
KING EDWARD  Why, Clarence, to myself.
RICHARD 
115 That would be ten days’ wonder at the least.
CLARENCE 
 That’s a day longer than a wonder lasts.
RICHARD 
 By so much is the wonder in extremes.
KING EDWARD 
 Well, jest on, brothers. I can tell you both
 Her suit is granted for her husband’s lands.

Enter a Nobleman.

NOBLEMAN 
120 My gracious lord, Henry, your foe, is taken
 And brought your prisoner to your palace gate.
KING EDWARD 
 See that he be conveyed unto the Tower.
Nobleman exits.
 And go we, brothers, to the man that took him,
 To question of his apprehension.—
125 Widow, go you along.—Lords, use her honorably.
They exit.
Richard remains.


135
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 2

RICHARD 
 Ay, Edward will use women honorably!
 Would he were wasted—marrow, bones, and all—
 That from his loins no hopeful branch may spring
 To cross me from the golden time I look for.
130 And yet, between my soul’s desire and me,
 The lustful Edward’s title burièd,
 Is Clarence, Henry, and his son, young Edward,
 And all the unlooked-for issue of their bodies
 To take their rooms ere I can place myself.
135 A cold premeditation for my purpose.
 Why, then, I do but dream on sovereignty
 Like one that stands upon a promontory
 And spies a far-off shore where he would tread,
 Wishing his foot were equal with his eye,
140 And chides the sea that sunders him from thence,
 Saying he’ll lade it dry to have his way.
 So do I wish the crown, being so far off,
 And so I chide the means that keeps me from it,
 And so, I say, I’ll cut the causes off,
145 Flattering me with impossibilities.
 My eye’s too quick, my heart o’erweens too much,
 Unless my hand and strength could equal them.
 Well, say there is no kingdom then for Richard,
 What other pleasure can the world afford?
150 I’ll make my heaven in a lady’s lap
 And deck my body in gay ornaments,
 And ’witch sweet ladies with my words and looks.
 O miserable thought, and more unlikely
 Than to accomplish twenty golden crowns!
155 Why, Love forswore me in my mother’s womb,
 And, for I should not deal in her soft laws,
 She did corrupt frail Nature with some bribe
 To shrink mine arm up like a withered shrub;
 To make an envious mountain on my back,

137
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 2

160 Where sits Deformity to mock my body;
 To shape my legs of an unequal size;
 To disproportion me in every part,
 Like to a chaos, or an unlicked bear-whelp,
 That carries no impression like the dam.
165 And am I then a man to be beloved?
 O monstrous fault to harbor such a thought!
 Then, since this Earth affords no joy to me
 But to command, to check, to o’erbear such
 As are of better person than myself,
170 I’ll make my heaven to dream upon the crown,
 And, whiles I live, t’ account this world but hell
 Until my misshaped trunk that bears this head
 Be round impalèd with a glorious crown.
 And yet I know not how to get the crown,
175 For many lives stand between me and home;
 And I, like one lost in a thorny wood,
 That rents the thorns and is rent with the thorns,
 Seeking a way and straying from the way,
 Not knowing how to find the open air,
180 But toiling desperately to find it out,
 Torment myself to catch the English crown.
 And from that torment I will free myself
 Or hew my way out with a bloody axe.
 Why, I can smile, and murder whiles I smile,
185 And cry “Content” to that which grieves my heart,
 And wet my cheeks with artificial tears,
 And frame my face to all occasions.
 I’ll drown more sailors than the mermaid shall;
 I’ll slay more gazers than the basilisk;
190 I’ll play the orator as well as Nestor,
 Deceive more slyly than Ulysses could,
 And, like a Sinon, take another Troy.
 I can add colors to the chameleon,
 Change shapes with Proteus for advantages,

139
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 3

195 And set the murderous Machiavel to school.
 Can I do this and cannot get a crown?
 Tut, were it farther off, I’ll pluck it down.
He exits.


Scene 3
Flourish. Enter Lewis the French king, his sister
the Lady Bona, his Admiral called Bourbon,
Prince Edward, Queen Margaret, and the Earl of Oxford,
the last three wearing the red rose.


Lewis sits, and riseth up again.

KING LEWIS 
 Fair Queen of England, worthy Margaret,
 Sit down with us. It ill befits thy state
 And birth that thou shouldst stand while Lewis
 doth sit.
QUEEN MARGARET 
5 No, mighty King of France. Now Margaret
 Must strike her sail and learn awhile to serve
 Where kings command. I was, I must confess,
 Great Albion’s queen in former golden days,
 But now mischance hath trod my title down
10 And with dishonor laid me on the ground,
 Where I must take like seat unto my fortune
 And to my humble seat conform myself.
KING LEWIS 
 Why, say, fair queen, whence springs this deep
 despair?
QUEEN MARGARET 
15 From such a cause as fills mine eyes with tears
 And stops my tongue, while heart is drowned in cares.

141
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 3

KING LEWIS 
 Whate’er it be, be thou still like thyself,
 And sit thee by our side.Seats her by him.
 Yield not thy neck
20 To Fortune’s yoke, but let thy dauntless mind
 Still ride in triumph over all mischance.
 Be plain, Queen Margaret, and tell thy grief.
 It shall be eased if France can yield relief.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Those gracious words revive my drooping thoughts
25 And give my tongue-tied sorrows leave to speak.
 Now therefore be it known to noble Lewis
 That Henry, sole possessor of my love,
 Is, of a king, become a banished man
 And forced to live in Scotland a forlorn;
30 While proud ambitious Edward, Duke of York,
 Usurps the regal title and the seat
 Of England’s true-anointed lawful king.
 This is the cause that I, poor Margaret,
 With this my son, Prince Edward, Henry’s heir,
35 Am come to crave thy just and lawful aid;
 And if thou fail us, all our hope is done.
 Scotland hath will to help but cannot help;
 Our people and our peers are both misled,
 Our treasure seized, our soldiers put to flight,
40 And, as thou seest, ourselves in heavy plight.
KING LEWIS 
 Renownèd queen, with patience calm the storm
 While we bethink a means to break it off.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 The more we stay, the stronger grows our foe.
KING LEWIS 
 The more I stay, the more I’ll succor thee.
QUEEN MARGARET 
45 O, but impatience waiteth on true sorrow.

143
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 3

Enter Warwick, wearing the white rose.

 And see where comes the breeder of my sorrow.
KING LEWIS 
 What’s he approacheth boldly to our presence?
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Our Earl of Warwick, Edward’s greatest friend.
KING LEWIS, standing 
 Welcome, brave Warwick. What brings thee to France?
He descends. She ariseth.
QUEEN MARGARET, aside 
50 Ay, now begins a second storm to rise,
 For this is he that moves both wind and tide.
WARWICK 
 From worthy Edward, King of Albion,
 My lord and sovereign and thy vowèd friend,
 I come in kindness and unfeignèd love,
55 First, to do greetings to thy royal person,
 And then to crave a league of amity,
 And, lastly, to confirm that amity
 With nuptial knot, if thou vouchsafe to grant
 That virtuous Lady Bona, thy fair sister,
60 To England’s king in lawful marriage.
QUEEN MARGARET, aside 
 If that go forward, Henry’s hope is done.
WARWICK, speaking to Lady Bona 
 And, gracious madam, in our king’s behalf,
 I am commanded, with your leave and favor,
 Humbly to kiss your hand, and with my tongue
65 To tell the passion of my sovereign’s heart,
 Where fame, late ent’ring at his heedful ears,
 Hath placed thy beauty’s image and thy virtue.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 King Lewis and Lady Bona, hear me speak
 Before you answer Warwick. His demand
70 Springs not from Edward’s well-meant honest love,

145
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 3

 But from deceit, bred by necessity;
 For how can tyrants safely govern home
 Unless abroad they purchase great alliance?
 To prove him tyrant, this reason may suffice:
75 That Henry liveth still; but were he dead,
 Yet here Prince Edward stands, King Henry’s son.
 Look, therefore, Lewis, that by this league and
 marriage
 Thou draw not on thy danger and dishonor;
80 For though usurpers sway the rule awhile,
 Yet heav’ns are just, and time suppresseth wrongs.
WARWICK 
 Injurious Margaret!
PRINCE EDWARD  And why not “Queen”?
WARWICK 
 Because thy father Henry did usurp,
85 And thou no more art prince than she is queen.
OXFORD 
 Then Warwick disannuls great John of Gaunt,
 Which did subdue the greatest part of Spain;
 And after John of Gaunt, Henry the Fourth,
 Whose wisdom was a mirror to the wisest;
90 And after that wise prince, Henry the Fifth,
 Who by his prowess conquerèd all France.
 From these our Henry lineally descends.
WARWICK 
 Oxford, how haps it in this smooth discourse
 You told not how Henry the Sixth hath lost
95 All that which Henry the Fifth had gotten.
 Methinks these peers of France should smile at that.
 But, for the rest: you tell a pedigree
 Of threescore and two years, a silly time
 To make prescription for a kingdom’s worth.
OXFORD 
100 Why, Warwick, canst thou speak against thy liege,
 Whom thou obeyed’st thirty and six years,
 And not bewray thy treason with a blush?

147
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 3

WARWICK 
 Can Oxford, that did ever fence the right,
 Now buckler falsehood with a pedigree?
105 For shame, leave Henry, and call Edward king.
OXFORD 
 Call him my king, by whose injurious doom
 My elder brother, the Lord Aubrey Vere,
 Was done to death? And more than so, my father,
 Even in the downfall of his mellowed years,
110 When nature brought him to the door of death?
 No, Warwick, no. While life upholds this arm,
 This arm upholds the house of Lancaster.
WARWICK And I the house of York.
KING LEWIS 
 Queen Margaret, Prince Edward, and Oxford,
115 Vouchsafe, at our request, to stand aside
 While I use further conference with Warwick.
They stand aloof.
QUEEN MARGARET, aside 
 Heavens grant that Warwick’s words bewitch him
 not.
KING LEWIS 
 Now, Warwick, tell me, even upon thy conscience,
120 Is Edward your true king? For I were loath
 To link with him that were not lawful chosen.
WARWICK 
 Thereon I pawn my credit and mine honor.
KING LEWIS 
 But is he gracious in the people’s eye?
WARWICK 
 The more that Henry was unfortunate.
KING LEWIS 
125 Then further, all dissembling set aside,
 Tell me for truth the measure of his love
 Unto our sister Bona.

149
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 3

WARWICK  Such it seems
 As may beseem a monarch like himself.
130 Myself have often heard him say and swear
 That this his love was an eternal plant,
 Whereof the root was fixed in virtue’s ground,
 The leaves and fruit maintained with beauty’s sun,
 Exempt from envy but not from disdain,
135 Unless the Lady Bona quit his pain.
KING LEWIS 
 Now, sister, let us hear your firm resolve.
LADY BONA 
 Your grant or your denial shall be mine.
 (Speaks to Warwick.) Yet I confess that often ere this
 day,
140 When I have heard your king’s desert recounted,
 Mine ear hath tempted judgment to desire.
KING LEWIS 
 Then, Warwick, thus: our sister shall be Edward’s.
 And now forthwith shall articles be drawn
 Touching the jointure that your king must make,
145 Which with her dowry shall be counterpoised.—
 Draw near, Queen Margaret, and be a witness
 That Bona shall be wife to the English king.
PRINCE EDWARD 
 To Edward, but not to the English king.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Deceitful Warwick, it was thy device
150 By this alliance to make void my suit.
 Before thy coming, Lewis was Henry’s friend.
KING LEWIS 
 And still is friend to him and Margaret.
 But if your title to the crown be weak,
 As may appear by Edward’s good success,
155 Then ’tis but reason that I be released
 From giving aid which late I promisèd.

151
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 3

 Yet shall you have all kindness at my hand
 That your estate requires and mine can yield.
WARWICK 
 Henry now lives in Scotland at his ease,
160 Where, having nothing, nothing can he lose.—
 And as for you yourself, our quondam queen,
 You have a father able to maintain you,
 And better ’twere you troubled him than France.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Peace, impudent and shameless Warwick,
165 Proud setter-up and puller-down of kings!
 I will not hence till with my talk and tears,
 Both full of truth, I make King Lewis behold
 Thy sly conveyance and thy lord’s false love,
 For both of you are birds of selfsame feather.
Post blowing a horn within.
KING LEWIS 
170 Warwick, this is some post to us or thee.

Enter the Post.

POST speaks to Warwick. 
 My lord ambassador, these letters are for you,
 Sent from your brother, Marquess Montague.
 (To Lewis.) These from our king unto your Majesty.
 (To Margaret.) And, madam, these for you—from
175 whom, I know not.They all read their letters.
OXFORD, aside 
 I like it well that our fair queen and mistress
 Smiles at her news, while Warwick frowns at his.
PRINCE EDWARD, aside 
 Nay, mark how Lewis stamps as he were nettled.
 I hope all’s for the best.
KING LEWIS 
180 Warwick, what are thy news? And yours, fair queen?
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Mine, such as fill my heart with unhoped joys.

153
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 3

WARWICK 
 Mine, full of sorrow and heart’s discontent.
KING LEWIS 
 What, has your king married the Lady Grey,
 And now, to soothe your forgery and his,
185 Sends me a paper to persuade me patience?
 Is this th’ alliance that he seeks with France?
 Dare he presume to scorn us in this manner?
QUEEN MARGARET 
 I told your Majesty as much before.
 This proveth Edward’s love and Warwick’s honesty.
WARWICK 
190 King Lewis, I here protest in sight of heaven
 And by the hope I have of heavenly bliss,
 That I am clear from this misdeed of Edward’s—
 No more my king, for he dishonors me,
 But most himself, if he could see his shame.
195 Did I forget that by the house of York
 My father came untimely to his death?
 Did I let pass th’ abuse done to my niece?
 Did I impale him with the regal crown?
 Did I put Henry from his native right?
200 And am I guerdoned at the last with shame?
 Shame on himself, for my desert is honor!
 And to repair my honor lost for him,
 I here renounce him and return to Henry.
He removes the white rose.
 My noble queen, let former grudges pass,
205 And henceforth I am thy true servitor.
 I will revenge his wrong to Lady Bona
 And replant Henry in his former state.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Warwick, these words have turned my hate to love,
 And I forgive and quite forget old faults,
210 And joy that thou becom’st King Henry’s friend.

155
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 3. SC. 3

WARWICK 
 So much his friend, ay, his unfeignèd friend,
 That if King Lewis vouchsafe to furnish us
 With some few bands of chosen soldiers,
 I’ll undertake to land them on our coast
215 And force the tyrant from his seat by war.
 ’Tis not his new-made bride shall succor him.
 And as for Clarence, as my letters tell me,
 He’s very likely now to fall from him
 For matching more for wanton lust than honor,
220 Or than for strength and safety of our country.
LADY BONA 
 Dear brother, how shall Bona be revenged
 But by thy help to this distressèd queen?
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Renownèd prince, how shall poor Henry live
 Unless thou rescue him from foul despair?
LADY BONA 
225 My quarrel and this English queen’s are one.
WARWICK 
 And mine, fair Lady Bona, joins with yours.
KING LEWIS 
 And mine with hers and thine and Margaret’s.
 Therefore at last I firmly am resolved
 You shall have aid.
QUEEN MARGARET 
230 Let me give humble thanks for all, at once.
KING LEWIS 
 Then, England’s messenger, return in post,
 And tell false Edward, thy supposèd king,
 That Lewis of France is sending over maskers
 To revel it with him and his new bride.
235 Thou seest what’s passed; go fear thy king withal.
LADY BONA 
 Tell him, in hope he’ll prove a widower shortly,
 I wear the willow garland for his sake.

157
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ACT 3. SC. 3

QUEEN MARGARET 
 Tell him my mourning weeds are laid aside
 And I am ready to put armor on.
WARWICK 
240 Tell him from me that he hath done me wrong,
 And therefore I’ll uncrown him ere ’t be long.
 There’s thy reward.Gives money.
 Be gone.Post exits.
KING LEWIS  But, Warwick,
245 Thou and Oxford with five thousand men
 Shall cross the seas and bid false Edward battle;
 And as occasion serves, this noble queen
 And prince shall follow with a fresh supply.
 Yet ere thou go, but answer me one doubt:
250 What pledge have we of thy firm loyalty?
WARWICK 
 This shall assure my constant loyalty:
 That if our queen and this young prince agree,
 I’ll join mine eldest daughter, and my joy,
 To him forthwith in holy wedlock bands.
QUEEN MARGARET 
255 Yes, I agree, and thank you for your motion.
 Son Edward, she is fair and virtuous.
 Therefore, delay not; give thy hand to Warwick,
 And with thy hand, thy faith irrevocable,
 That only Warwick’s daughter shall be thine.
PRINCE EDWARD 
260 Yes, I accept her, for she well deserves it,
 And here, to pledge my vow, I give my hand.
He gives his hand to Warwick.
KING LEWIS 
 Why stay we now? These soldiers shall be levied,
 And thou, Lord Bourbon, our High Admiral,
 Shall waft them over with our royal fleet.
265 I long till Edward fall by war’s mischance
 For mocking marriage with a dame of France.

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

All but Warwick exit.
WARWICK 
 I came from Edward as ambassador,
 But I return his sworn and mortal foe.
 Matter of marriage was the charge he gave me,
270 But dreadful war shall answer his demand.
 Had he none else to make a stale but me?
 Then none but I shall turn his jest to sorrow.
 I was the chief that raised him to the crown,
 And I’ll be chief to bring him down again:
275 Not that I pity Henry’s misery,
 But seek revenge on Edward’s mockery.
He exits.


ACT 4
Scene 1
Enter Richard of Gloucester, Clarence, Somerset,
and Montague, all wearing the white rose.


RICHARD 
 Now tell me, brother Clarence, what think you
 Of this new marriage with the Lady Grey?
 Hath not our brother made a worthy choice?
CLARENCE 
 Alas, you know ’tis far from hence to France.
5 How could he stay till Warwick made return?
Flourish.
SOMERSET 
 My lords, forbear this talk. Here comes the King.
RICHARD And his well-chosen bride.
CLARENCE 
 I mind to tell him plainly what I think.

Enter King Edward, with Attendants,
Lady Grey, now Queen Elizabeth, Pembroke, Stafford,
Hastings, and others, all wearing the white rose.
Four stand on one side, and four on the other.


KING EDWARD 
 Now, brother of Clarence, how like you our choice,
10 That you stand pensive, as half malcontent?
CLARENCE 
 As well as Lewis of France or the Earl of Warwick,
163

165
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 1

 Which are so weak of courage and in judgment
 That they’ll take no offense at our abuse.
KING EDWARD 
 Suppose they take offense without a cause,
15 They are but Lewis and Warwick; I am Edward,
 Your king and Warwick’s, and must have my will.
RICHARD 
 And shall have your will because our king.
 Yet hasty marriage seldom proveth well.
KING EDWARD 
 Yea, brother Richard, are you offended too?
RICHARD 20Not I.
 No, God forbid that I should wish them severed
 Whom God hath joined together. Ay, and ’twere pity
 To sunder them that yoke so well together.
KING EDWARD 
 Setting your scorns and your mislike aside,
25 Tell me some reason why the Lady Grey
 Should not become my wife and England’s queen?
 And you too, Somerset and Montague,
 Speak freely what you think.
CLARENCE 
 Then this is mine opinion: that King Lewis
30 Becomes your enemy for mocking him
 About the marriage of the Lady Bona.
RICHARD 
 And Warwick, doing what you gave in charge,
 Is now dishonorèd by this new marriage.
KING EDWARD 
 What if both Lewis and Warwick be appeased
35 By such invention as I can devise?
MONTAGUE 
 Yet to have joined with France in such alliance
 Would more have strengthened this our
 commonwealth
 ’Gainst foreign storms than any home-bred marriage.

167
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ACT 4. SC. 1

HASTINGS 
40 Why, knows not Montague that of itself
 England is safe, if true within itself?
MONTAGUE 
 But the safer when ’tis backed with France.
HASTINGS 
 ’Tis better using France than trusting France.
 Let us be backed with God and with the seas
45 Which He hath giv’n for fence impregnable,
 And with their helps only defend ourselves.
 In them and in ourselves our safety lies.
CLARENCE 
 For this one speech, Lord Hastings well deserves
 To have the heir of the Lord Hungerford.
KING EDWARD 
50 Ay, what of that? It was my will and grant,
 And for this once my will shall stand for law.
RICHARD 
 And yet methinks your Grace hath not done well
 To give the heir and daughter of Lord Scales
 Unto the brother of your loving bride.
55 She better would have fitted me or Clarence;
 But in your bride you bury brotherhood.
CLARENCE 
 Or else you would not have bestowed the heir
 Of the Lord Bonville on your new wife’s son,
 And leave your brothers to go speed elsewhere.
KING EDWARD 
60 Alas, poor Clarence, is it for a wife
 That thou art malcontent? I will provide thee.
CLARENCE 
 In choosing for yourself you showed your judgment,
 Which, being shallow, you shall give me leave
 To play the broker in mine own behalf.
65 And to that end, I shortly mind to leave you.

169
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ACT 4. SC. 1

KING EDWARD 
 Leave me or tarry, Edward will be king
 And not be tied unto his brother’s will.
QUEEN ELIZABETH 
 My lords, before it pleased his Majesty
 To raise my state to title of a queen,
70 Do me but right and you must all confess
 That I was not ignoble of descent,
 And meaner than myself have had like fortune.
 But as this title honors me and mine,
 So your dislikes, to whom I would be pleasing,
75 Doth cloud my joys with danger and with sorrow.
KING EDWARD 
 My love, forbear to fawn upon their frowns.
 What danger or what sorrow can befall thee
 So long as Edward is thy constant friend
 And their true sovereign, whom they must obey?
80 Nay, whom they shall obey, and love thee too,
 Unless they seek for hatred at my hands;
 Which if they do, yet will I keep thee safe,
 And they shall feel the vengeance of my wrath.
RICHARD, aside 
 I hear, yet say not much, but think the more.

Enter a Post.

KING EDWARD 
85 Now, messenger, what letters or what news from
 France?
POST 
 My sovereign liege, no letters and few words
 But such as I without your special pardon
 Dare not relate.
KING EDWARD 
90 Go to, we pardon thee. Therefore, in brief,
 Tell me their words as near as thou canst guess them.
 What answer makes King Lewis unto our letters?

171
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ACT 4. SC. 1

POST 
 At my depart, these were his very words:
 “Go tell false Edward, the supposèd king,
95 That Lewis of France is sending over maskers
 To revel it with him and his new bride.”
KING EDWARD 
 Is Lewis so brave? Belike he thinks me Henry.
 But what said Lady Bona to my marriage?
POST 
 These were her words, uttered with mild disdain:
100 “Tell him, in hope he’ll prove a widower shortly,
 I’ll wear the willow garland for his sake.”
KING EDWARD 
 I blame not her; she could say little less;
 She had the wrong. But what said Henry’s queen?
 For I have heard that she was there in place.
POST 
105 “Tell him,” quoth she, “my mourning weeds are
 done,
 And I am ready to put armor on.”
KING EDWARD 
 Belike she minds to play the Amazon.
 But what said Warwick to these injuries?
POST 
110 He, more incensed against your Majesty
 Than all the rest, discharged me with these words:
 “Tell him from me that he hath done me wrong,
 And therefore I’ll uncrown him ere ’t be long.”
KING EDWARD 
 Ha! Durst the traitor breathe out so proud words?
115 Well, I will arm me, being thus forewarned.
 They shall have wars and pay for their presumption.
 But say, is Warwick friends with Margaret?
POST 
 Ay, gracious sovereign, they are so linked in
 friendship

173
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 1

120 That young Prince Edward marries Warwick’s
 daughter.
CLARENCE, aside 
 Belike the elder; Clarence will have the younger.—
 Now, brother king, farewell, and sit you fast,
 For I will hence to Warwick’s other daughter,
125 That, though I want a kingdom, yet in marriage
 I may not prove inferior to yourself.
 You that love me and Warwick, follow me.
Clarence exits, and Somerset follows.
RICHARD, aside 
 Not I. My thoughts aim at a further matter:
 I stay not for the love of Edward, but the crown.
KING EDWARD 
130 Clarence and Somerset both gone to Warwick?
 Yet am I armed against the worst can happen,
 And haste is needful in this desp’rate case.
 Pembroke and Stafford, you in our behalf
 Go levy men and make prepare for war.
135 They are already, or quickly will be, landed.
 Myself in person will straight follow you.
Pembroke and Stafford exit.
 But ere I go, Hastings and Montague,
 Resolve my doubt: you twain, of all the rest,
 Are near to Warwick by blood and by alliance.
140 Tell me if you love Warwick more than me.
 If it be so, then both depart to him.
 I rather wish you foes than hollow friends.
 But if you mind to hold your true obedience,
 Give me assurance with some friendly vow,
145 That I may never have you in suspect.
MONTAGUE 
 So God help Montague as he proves true!
HASTINGS 
 And Hastings as he favors Edward’s cause!

175
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 2

KING EDWARD 
 Now, brother Richard, will you stand by us?
RICHARD 
 Ay, in despite of all that shall withstand you.
KING EDWARD 
150 Why, so. Then am I sure of victory.
 Now therefore let us hence and lose no hour
 Till we meet Warwick with his foreign power.
They exit.


Scene 2
Enter Warwick and Oxford in England,
wearing the red rose, with French Soldiers.


WARWICK 
 Trust me, my lord, all hitherto goes well.
 The common people by numbers swarm to us.

Enter Clarence and Somerset.

 But see where Somerset and Clarence comes.—
 Speak suddenly, my lords: are we all friends?
CLARENCE 5Fear not that, my lord.
WARWICK 
 Then, gentle Clarence, welcome unto Warwick,
 And welcome, Somerset. I hold it cowardice
 To rest mistrustful where a noble heart
 Hath pawned an open hand in sign of love;
10 Else might I think that Clarence, Edward’s brother,
 Were but a feignèd friend to our proceedings.
 But welcome, sweet Clarence; my daughter shall be
 thine.
 And now, what rests but, in night’s coverture
15 Thy brother being carelessly encamped,
 His soldiers lurking in the town about,
 And but attended by a simple guard,

177
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 3

 We may surprise and take him at our pleasure?
 Our scouts have found the adventure very easy;
20 That, as Ulysses and stout Diomed
 With sleight and manhood stole to Rhesus’ tents
 And brought from thence the Thracian fatal steeds,
 So we, well covered with the night’s black mantle,
 At unawares may beat down Edward’s guard
25 And seize himself. I say not “slaughter him,”
 For I intend but only to surprise him.
 You that will follow me to this attempt,
 Applaud the name of Henry with your leader.
They all cry “Henry!”
 Why then, let’s on our way in silent sort.
30 For Warwick and his friends, God and Saint George!
They exit.


Scene 3
Enter three Watchmen to guard King Edward’s tent,
all wearing the white rose.


FIRST WATCH 
 Come on, my masters, each man take his stand.
 The King by this is set him down to sleep.
SECOND WATCH What, will he not to bed?
FIRST WATCH 
 Why, no, for he hath made a solemn vow
5 Never to lie and take his natural rest
 Till Warwick or himself be quite suppressed.
SECOND WATCH 
 Tomorrow, then, belike shall be the day,
 If Warwick be so near as men report.
THIRD WATCH 
 But say, I pray, what nobleman is that
10 That with the King here resteth in his tent?

179
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 3

FIRST WATCH 
 ’Tis the Lord Hastings, the King’s chiefest friend.
THIRD WATCH 
 O, is it so? But why commands the King
 That his chief followers lodge in towns about him,
 While he himself keeps in the cold field?
SECOND WATCH 
15 ’Tis the more honor, because more dangerous.
THIRD WATCH 
 Ay, but give me worship and quietness;
 I like it better than a dangerous honor.
 If Warwick knew in what estate he stands,
 ’Tis to be doubted he would waken him.
FIRST WATCH 
20 Unless our halberds did shut up his passage.
SECOND WATCH 
 Ay, wherefore else guard we his royal tent
 But to defend his person from night foes?

Enter Warwick, Clarence, Oxford, Somerset, all wearing
the red rose, and French Soldiers, silent all.


WARWICK 
 This is his tent, and see where stand his guard.
 Courage, my masters. Honor, now or never!
25 But follow me, and Edward shall be ours.
FIRST WATCH Who goes there?
SECOND WATCH Stay, or thou diest!
Warwick and the rest cry all “Warwick, Warwick!”
and set upon the guard, who fly, crying “Arm, Arm!”
Warwick and the rest following them.


The drum playing and trumpet sounding,
enter Warwick, Somerset, and the rest, bringing
King Edward out in his gown, sitting in a chair.

Richard and Hastings flies over the stage.



181
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 3

SOMERSET 
 What are they that fly there?
WARWICK  Richard and Hastings.
30 Let them go. Here is the Duke.
KING EDWARD  The Duke?
 Why, Warwick, when we parted, thou call’dst me king.
WARWICK Ay, but the case is altered.
 When you disgraced me in my embassade,
35 Then I degraded you from being king
 And come now to create you Duke of York.
 Alas, how should you govern any kingdom
 That know not how to use ambassadors,
 Nor how to be contented with one wife,
40 Nor how to use your brothers brotherly,
 Nor how to study for the people’s welfare,
 Nor how to shroud yourself from enemies?
KING EDWARD 
 Yea, brother of Clarence, art thou here too?
 Nay, then, I see that Edward needs must down.
45 Yet, Warwick, in despite of all mischance,
 Of thee thyself and all thy complices,
 Edward will always bear himself as king.
 Though Fortune’s malice overthrow my state,
 My mind exceeds the compass of her wheel.
WARWICK 
50 Then for his mind be Edward England’s king,
Takes off his crown.
 But Henry now shall wear the English crown
 And be true king indeed, thou but the shadow.—
 My lord of Somerset, at my request,
 See that forthwith Duke Edward be conveyed
55 Unto my brother, Archbishop of York.
 When I have fought with Pembroke and his fellows,
 I’ll follow you and tell what answer
 Lewis and the Lady Bona send to him.—
 Now for awhile farewell, good Duke of York.

183
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 4

They begin to lead him out forcibly.
KING EDWARD 
60 What Fates impose, that men must needs abide;
 It boots not to resist both wind and tide.
Somerset and Soldiers exit, guarding King Edward.
OXFORD 
 What now remains, my lords, for us to do
 But march to London with our soldiers?
WARWICK 
 Ay, that’s the first thing that we have to do,
65 To free King Henry from imprisonment
 And see him seated in the regal throne.
They exit.


Scene 4
Enter Rivers and Queen Elizabeth,
wearing the white rose.


RIVERS 
 Madam, what makes you in this sudden change?
QUEEN ELIZABETH 
 Why, brother Rivers, are you yet to learn
 What late misfortune is befall’n King Edward?
RIVERS 
 What, loss of some pitched battle against Warwick?
QUEEN ELIZABETH 
5 No, but the loss of his own royal person.
RIVERS Then is my sovereign slain?
QUEEN ELIZABETH 
 Ay, almost slain, for he is taken prisoner,
 Either betrayed by falsehood of his guard
 Or by his foe surprised at unawares;
10 And, as I further have to understand,
 Is new committed to the Bishop of York,
 Fell Warwick’s brother and by that our foe.

185
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 4

RIVERS 
 These news I must confess are full of grief;
 Yet, gracious madam, bear it as you may.
15 Warwick may lose that now hath won the day.
QUEEN ELIZABETH 
 Till then fair hope must hinder life’s decay;
 And I the rather wean me from despair
 For love of Edward’s offspring in my womb.
 This is it that makes me bridle passion
20 And bear with mildness my misfortune’s cross.
 Ay, ay, for this I draw in many a tear
 And stop the rising of blood-sucking sighs,
 Lest with my sighs or tears I blast or drown
 King Edward’s fruit, true heir to th’ English crown.
RIVERS 
25 But, madam, where is Warwick then become?
QUEEN ELIZABETH 
 I am informèd that he comes towards London
 To set the crown once more on Henry’s head.
 Guess thou the rest: King Edward’s friends must
 down.
30 But to prevent the tyrant’s violence—
 For trust not him that hath once broken faith—
 I’ll hence forthwith unto the sanctuary
 To save at least the heir of Edward’s right.
 There shall I rest secure from force and fraud.
35 Come, therefore, let us fly while we may fly.
 If Warwick take us, we are sure to die.
They exit.




187
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 5

Scene 5
Enter Richard of Gloucester, Lord Hastings,
and Sir William Stanley, with Soldiers,
all wearing the white rose.


RICHARD 
 Now, my Lord Hastings and Sir William Stanley,
 Leave off to wonder why I drew you hither
 Into this chiefest thicket of the park.
 Thus stands the case: you know our king, my brother,
5 Is prisoner to the Bishop here, at whose hands
 He hath good usage and great liberty,
 And, often but attended with weak guard,
 Comes hunting this way to disport himself.
 I have advertised him by secret means
10 That, if about this hour he make this way
 Under the color of his usual game,
 He shall here find his friends with horse and men
 To set him free from his captivity.

Enter King Edward, wearing the white rose,
and a Huntsman with him.


HUNTSMAN 
 This way, my lord, for this way lies the game.
KING EDWARD 
15 Nay, this way, man. See where the huntsmen stand.—
 Now, brother of Gloucester, Lord Hastings, and the
 rest,
 Stand you thus close to steal the Bishop’s deer?
RICHARD 
 Brother, the time and case requireth haste.
20 Your horse stands ready at the park corner.
KING EDWARD But whither shall we then?
HASTINGS 
 To Lynn, my lord, and shipped from thence
 to Flanders.

189
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 6

RICHARD 
 Well guessed, believe me, for that was my meaning.
KING EDWARD 
25 Stanley, I will requite thy forwardness.
RICHARD 
 But wherefore stay we? ’Tis no time to talk.
KING EDWARD 
 Huntsman, what sayst thou? Wilt thou go along?
HUNTSMAN 
 Better do so than tarry and be hanged.
RICHARD 
 Come then, away! Let’s ha’ no more ado.
KING EDWARD 
30 Bishop, farewell; shield thee from Warwick’s frown,
 And pray that I may repossess the crown.
They exit.


Scene 6
Flourish. Enter King Henry the Sixth, Clarence,
Warwick, Somerset, young Henry Earl of Richmond,
Oxford, Montague, all wearing the red rose,
and Lieutenant of the Tower.


KING HENRY 
 Master lieutenant, now that God and friends
 Have shaken Edward from the regal seat
 And turned my captive state to liberty,
 My fear to hope, my sorrows unto joys,
5 At our enlargement what are thy due fees?
LIEUTENANT 
 Subjects may challenge nothing of their sov’reigns,
 But, if an humble prayer may prevail,
 I then crave pardon of your Majesty.
KING HENRY 
 For what, lieutenant? For well using me?

191
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 6

10 Nay, be thou sure I’ll well requite thy kindness,
 For that it made my imprisonment a pleasure,
 Ay, such a pleasure as encagèd birds
 Conceive when, after many moody thoughts,
 At last by notes of household harmony
15 They quite forget their loss of liberty.—
 But, Warwick, after God thou sett’st me free,
 And chiefly, therefore, I thank God and thee.
 He was the author, thou the instrument.
 Therefore, that I may conquer Fortune’s spite
20 By living low where Fortune cannot hurt me,
 And that the people of this blessèd land
 May not be punished with my thwarting stars,
 Warwick, although my head still wear the crown,
 I here resign my government to thee,
25 For thou art fortunate in all thy deeds.
WARWICK 
 Your Grace hath still been famed for virtuous
 And now may seem as wise as virtuous
 By spying and avoiding Fortune’s malice,
 For few men rightly temper with the stars.
30 Yet, in this one thing let me blame your Grace:
 For choosing me when Clarence is in place.
CLARENCE 
 No, Warwick, thou art worthy of the sway,
 To whom the heav’ns in thy nativity
 Adjudged an olive branch and laurel crown
35 As likely to be blest in peace and war;
 And therefore I yield thee my free consent.
WARWICK 
 And I choose Clarence only for Protector.
KING HENRY 
 Warwick and Clarence, give me both your hands.
 Now join your hands, and with your hands your
40 hearts,
 That no dissension hinder government.

193
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 6

He joins their hands.
 I make you both Protectors of this land,
 While I myself will lead a private life
 And in devotion spend my latter days,
45 To sin’s rebuke and my Creator’s praise.
WARWICK 
 What answers Clarence to his sovereign’s will?
CLARENCE 
 That he consents, if Warwick yield consent,
 For on thy fortune I repose myself.
WARWICK 
 Why, then, though loath, yet must I be content.
50 We’ll yoke together like a double shadow
 To Henry’s body, and supply his place—
 I mean, in bearing weight of government—
 While he enjoys the honor and his ease.
 And, Clarence, now then it is more than needful
55 Forthwith that Edward be pronounced a traitor
 And all his lands and goods be confiscate.
CLARENCE 
 What else? And that succession be determinèd.
WARWICK 
 Ay, therein Clarence shall not want his part.
KING HENRY 
 But with the first of all your chief affairs
60 Let me entreat—for I command no more—
 That Margaret your queen and my son Edward
 Be sent for, to return from France with speed,
 For till I see them here, by doubtful fear
 My joy of liberty is half eclipsed.
CLARENCE 
65 It shall be done, my sovereign, with all speed.
KING HENRY 
 My lord of Somerset, what youth is that
 Of whom you seem to have so tender care?

195
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 6

SOMERSET 
 My liege, it is young Henry, Earl of Richmond.
KING HENRY, to Richmond 
 Come hither, England’s hope.
Lays his hand on Richmond’s head.
70 If secret powers
 Suggest but truth to my divining thoughts,
 This pretty lad will prove our country’s bliss.
 His looks are full of peaceful majesty,
 His head by nature framed to wear a crown,
75 His hand to wield a scepter, and himself
 Likely in time to bless a regal throne.
 Make much of him, my lords, for this is he
 Must help you more than you are hurt by me.

Enter a Post.

WARWICK What news, my friend?
POST 
80 That Edward is escapèd from your brother
 And fled, as he hears since, to Burgundy.
WARWICK 
 Unsavory news! But how made he escape?
POST 
 He was conveyed by Richard, Duke of Gloucester,
 And the Lord Hastings, who attended him
85 In secret ambush on the forest side
 And from the Bishop’s huntsmen rescued him,
 For hunting was his daily exercise.
WARWICK 
 My brother was too careless of his charge.
 But let us hence, my sovereign, to provide
90 A salve for any sore that may betide.
All but Somerset, Richmond, and Oxford exit.
SOMERSET, to Oxford 
 My lord, I like not of this flight of Edward’s,
 For doubtless Burgundy will yield him help,

197
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 7

 And we shall have more wars before ’t be long.
 As Henry’s late presaging prophecy
95 Did glad my heart with hope of this young
 Richmond,
 So doth my heart misgive me in these conflicts
 What may befall him, to his harm and ours.
 Therefore, Lord Oxford, to prevent the worst,
100 Forthwith we’ll send him hence to Brittany
 Till storms be past of civil enmity.
OXFORD 
 Ay, for if Edward repossess the crown,
 ’Tis like that Richmond, with the rest, shall down.
SOMERSET 
 It shall be so. He shall to Brittany.
105 Come, therefore, let’s about it speedily.
They exit.


Scene 7
Flourish. Enter King Edward, Richard, Hastings,
and Soldiers, all wearing the white rose.


KING EDWARD 
 Now, brother Richard, Lord Hastings, and the rest:
 Yet thus far Fortune maketh us amends,
 And says that once more I shall interchange
 My wanèd state for Henry’s regal crown.
5 Well have we passed, and now re-passed, the seas,
 And brought desirèd help from Burgundy.
 What then remains, we being thus arrived
 From Ravenspurgh Haven before the gates of York,
 But that we enter as into our dukedom?
Hastings knocks at the gate.
RICHARD 
10 The gates made fast? Brother, I like not this.

199
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 4. SC. 7

 For many men that stumble at the threshold
 Are well foretold that danger lurks within.
KING EDWARD 
 Tush, man, abodements must not now affright us.
 By fair or foul means we must enter in,
15 For hither will our friends repair to us.
HASTINGS 
 My liege, I’ll knock once more to summon them.
He knocks.

Enter on the walls the Mayor of York and his brethren,
the Aldermen.


MAYOR 
 My lords, we were forewarnèd of your coming,
 And shut the gates for safety of ourselves,
 For now we owe allegiance unto Henry.
KING EDWARD 
20 But, master mayor, if Henry be your king,
 Yet Edward, at the least, is Duke of York.
MAYOR 
 True, my good lord, I know you for no less.
KING EDWARD 
 Why, and I challenge nothing but my dukedom,
 As being well content with that alone.
RICHARD, aside 
25 But when the fox hath once got in his nose,
 He’ll soon find means to make the body follow.
HASTINGS 
 Why, master mayor, why stand you in a doubt?
 Open the gates. We are King Henry’s friends.
MAYOR 
 Ay, say you so? The gates shall then be opened.
He descends with the Aldermen.
RICHARD 
30 A wise stout captain, and soon persuaded.

201
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ACT 4. SC. 7

HASTINGS 
 The good old man would fain that all were well,
 So ’twere not long of him; but being entered,
 I doubt not, I, but we shall soon persuade
 Both him and all his brothers unto reason.

Enter the Mayor and two Aldermen.

KING EDWARD 
35 So, master mayor, these gates must not be shut
 But in the night or in the time of war.
 What, fear not, man, but yield me up the keys.
Takes his keys.
 For Edward will defend the town and thee
 And all those friends that deign to follow me.

March. Enter Montgomery, with Drum and Soldiers.

RICHARD 
40 Brother, this is Sir John Montgomery,
 Our trusty friend, unless I be deceived.
KING EDWARD 
 Welcome, Sir John. But why come you in arms?
MONTGOMERY 
 To help King Edward in his time of storm,
 As every loyal subject ought to do.
KING EDWARD 
45 Thanks, good Montgomery. But we now forget
 Our title to the crown, and only claim
 Our dukedom, till God please to send the rest.
MONTGOMERY 
 Then fare you well, for I will hence again.
 I came to serve a king and not a duke.—
50 Drummer, strike up, and let us march away.
The Drum begins to march.
KING EDWARD 
 Nay, stay, Sir John, a while, and we’ll debate
 By what safe means the crown may be recovered.

203
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ACT 4. SC. 7

MONTGOMERY 
 What talk you of debating? In few words,
 If you’ll not here proclaim yourself our king,
55 I’ll leave you to your fortune and be gone
 To keep them back that come to succor you.
 Why shall we fight if you pretend no title?
RICHARD 
 Why, brother, wherefore stand you on nice points?
KING EDWARD 
 When we grow stronger, then we’ll make our claim.
60 Till then ’tis wisdom to conceal our meaning.
HASTINGS 
 Away with scrupulous wit! Now arms must rule.
RICHARD 
 And fearless minds climb soonest unto crowns.
 Brother, we will proclaim you out of hand;
 The bruit thereof will bring you many friends.
KING EDWARD 
65 Then be it as you will, for ’tis my right,
 And Henry but usurps the diadem.
MONTGOMERY 
 Ay, now my sovereign speaketh like himself,
 And now will I be Edward’s champion.
HASTINGS 
 Sound, trumpet! Edward shall be here proclaimed.—
70 Come, fellow soldier, make thou proclamation.
Flourish. Sound.
SOLDIER reads Edward the Fourth, by the Grace of
 God, King of England and France, and Lord of
 Ireland, &c.

MONTGOMERY 
 And whosoe’er gainsays King Edward’s right,
75 By this I challenge him to single fight.
Throws down his gauntlet.
ALL Long live Edward the Fourth!

205
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ACT 4. SC. 8

KING EDWARD 
 Thanks, brave Montgomery, and thanks unto you all.
 If fortune serve me, I’ll requite this kindness.
 Now, for this night let’s harbor here in York,
80 And when the morning sun shall raise his car
 Above the border of this horizon,
 We’ll forward towards Warwick and his mates;
 For well I wot that Henry is no soldier.
 Ah, froward Clarence, how evil it beseems thee
85 To flatter Henry and forsake thy brother!
 Yet, as we may, we’ll meet both thee and Warwick.
 Come on, brave soldiers; doubt not of the day;
 And that once gotten, doubt not of large pay.
They exit.


Scene 8
Flourish. Enter King Henry, Warwick, Montague,
Clarence, Oxford, and Exeter, all wearing the red rose.


WARWICK 
 What counsel, lords? Edward from Belgia,
 With hasty Germans and blunt Hollanders,
 Hath passed in safety through the Narrow Seas,
 And with his troops doth march amain to London,
5 And many giddy people flock to him.
KING HENRY 
 Let’s levy men and beat him back again.
CLARENCE 
 A little fire is quickly trodden out,
 Which, being suffered, rivers cannot quench.
WARWICK 
 In Warwickshire I have true-hearted friends,
10 Not mutinous in peace yet bold in war.
 Those will I muster up; and thou, son Clarence,
 Shalt stir up in Suffolk, Norfolk, and in Kent

207
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ACT 4. SC. 8

 The knights and gentlemen to come with thee.—
 Thou, brother Montague, in Buckingham,
15 Northampton, and in Leicestershire shalt find
 Men well inclined to hear what thou command’st.—
 And thou, brave Oxford, wondrous well beloved,
 In Oxfordshire shalt muster up thy friends.—
 My sovereign, with the loving citizens,
20 Like to his island girt in with the ocean,
 Or modest Dian circled with her nymphs,
 Shall rest in London till we come to him.
 Fair lords, take leave, and stand not to reply.—
 Farewell, my sovereign.
KING HENRY 
25 Farewell, my Hector and my Troy’s true hope.
CLARENCE 
 In sign of truth, I kiss your Highness’ hand.
KING HENRY 
 Well-minded Clarence, be thou fortunate.
MONTAGUE 
 Comfort, my lord; and so I take my leave.
OXFORD 
 And thus I seal my truth, and bid adieu.
He kisses Henry’s hand.
KING HENRY 
30 Sweet Oxford and my loving Montague
 And all at once, once more a happy farewell.
WARWICK 
 Farewell, sweet lords. Let’s meet at Coventry.
All but King Henry and Exeter exit.
KING HENRY 
 Here at the palace will I rest awhile.
 Cousin of Exeter, what thinks your Lordship?
35 Methinks the power that Edward hath in field
 Should not be able to encounter mine.
EXETER 
 The doubt is that he will seduce the rest.

209
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ACT 4. SC. 8

KING HENRY 
 That’s not my fear. My meed hath got me fame.
 I have not stopped mine ears to their demands,
40 Nor posted off their suits with slow delays.
 My pity hath been balm to heal their wounds,
 My mildness hath allayed their swelling griefs,
 My mercy dried their water-flowing tears.
 I have not been desirous of their wealth
45 Nor much oppressed them with great subsidies,
 Nor forward of revenge, though they much erred.
 Then why should they love Edward more than me?
 No, Exeter, these graces challenge grace;
 And when the lion fawns upon the lamb,
50 The lamb will never cease to follow him.
Shout within “À York! À York!
EXETER 
 Hark, hark, my lord, what shouts are these?

Enter King Edward and Richard and Soldiers,
all wearing the white rose.


KING EDWARD 
 Seize on the shamefaced Henry, bear him hence,
 And once again proclaim us King of England.—
 You are the fount that makes small brooks to flow.
55 Now stops thy spring; my sea shall suck them dry
 And swell so much the higher by their ebb.—
 Hence with him to the Tower. Let him not speak.
Soldiers exit with King Henry and Exeter.
 And, lords, towards Coventry bend we our course,
 Where peremptory Warwick now remains.
60 The sun shines hot, and if we use delay,
 Cold biting winter mars our hoped-for hay.
RICHARD 
 Away betimes, before his forces join,
 And take the great-grown traitor unawares.
 Brave warriors, march amain towards Coventry.
They exit.


ACT 5
>
Scene 1
Enter Warwick, wearing the red rose, the Mayor of
Coventry, two Messengers, and others, upon the walls.


WARWICK 
 Where is the post that came from valiant Oxford?—
 How far hence is thy lord, mine honest fellow?
FIRST MESSENGER 
 By this at Dunsmore, marching hitherward.
He exits.
WARWICK 
 How far off is our brother Montague?
5 Where is the post that came from Montague?
SECOND MESSENGER 
 By this at Daintry, with a puissant troop.He exits.

Enter, upon the walls, Somerville
wearing the red rose.


WARWICK 
 Say, Somerville, what says my loving son?
 And, by thy guess, how nigh is Clarence now?
SOMERVILLE 
 At Southam I did leave him with his forces
10 And do expect him here some two hours hence.
Drum offstage.
WARWICK 
 Then Clarence is at hand; I hear his drum.
213

215
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 1

SOMERVILLE 
 It is not his, my lord; here Southam lies.
 The drum your Honor hears marcheth from Warwick.
WARWICK 
 Who should that be? Belike unlooked-for friends.
SOMERVILLE 
15 They are at hand, and you shall quickly know.

March. Flourish. Enter below, King Edward,
Richard, and Soldiers, including a Trumpeter,
all wearing the white rose.


KING EDWARD 
 Go, Trumpet, to the walls, and sound a parle.
RICHARD 
 See how the surly Warwick mans the wall.
WARWICK 
 O unbid spite, is sportful Edward come?
 Where slept our scouts, or how are they seduced,
20 That we could hear no news of his repair?
KING EDWARD 
 Now, Warwick, wilt thou ope the city gates,
 Speak gentle words, and humbly bend thy knee?
 Call Edward king, and at his hands beg mercy,
 And he shall pardon thee these outrages.
WARWICK 
25 Nay, rather wilt thou draw thy forces hence,
 Confess who set thee up and plucked thee down,
 Call Warwick patron, and be penitent,
 And thou shalt still remain the Duke of York.
RICHARD 
 I thought at least he would have said “the King.”
30 Or did he make the jest against his will?
WARWICK 
 Is not a dukedom, sir, a goodly gift?

217
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 1

RICHARD 
 Ay, by my faith, for a poor earl to give.
 I’ll do thee service for so good a gift.
WARWICK 
 ’Twas I that gave the kingdom to thy brother.
KING EDWARD 
35 Why, then, ’tis mine, if but by Warwick’s gift.
WARWICK 
 Thou art no Atlas for so great a weight;
 And, weakling, Warwick takes his gift again,
 And Henry is my king, Warwick his subject.
KING EDWARD 
 But Warwick’s king is Edward’s prisoner.
40 And, gallant Warwick, do but answer this:
 What is the body when the head is off?
RICHARD 
 Alas, that Warwick had no more forecast,
 But whiles he thought to steal the single ten,
 The King was slyly fingered from the deck.
45 You left poor Henry at the Bishop’s palace,
 And ten to one you’ll meet him in the Tower.
KING EDWARD 
 ’Tis even so; yet you are Warwick still.
RICHARD 
 Come, Warwick, take the time; kneel down, kneel
 down.
50 Nay, when? Strike now, or else the iron cools.
WARWICK 
 I had rather chop this hand off at a blow
 And with the other fling it at thy face
 Than bear so low a sail to strike to thee.
KING EDWARD 
 Sail how thou canst, have wind and tide thy friend,
55 This hand, fast wound about thy coal-black hair,
 Shall, whiles thy head is warm and new cut off,
 Write in the dust this sentence with thy blood:
 “Wind-changing Warwick now can change no more.”

219
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 1

Enter Oxford, below, wearing the red rose,
with Soldiers, Drum and Colors.


WARWICK 
 O, cheerful colors, see where Oxford comes!
OXFORD 60Oxford, Oxford for Lancaster!
Oxford and his troops exit as through a city gate.
RICHARD 
 The gates are open; let us enter too.
KING EDWARD 
 So other foes may set upon our backs.
 Stand we in good array, for they no doubt
 Will issue out again and bid us battle.
65 If not, the city being but of small defense,
 We’ll quickly rouse the traitors in the same.

Oxford enters aloft.

WARWICK 
 O welcome, Oxford, for we want thy help.

Enter Montague, below, wearing the red rose,
with Soldiers, Drum and Colors.


MONTAGUE Montague, Montague for Lancaster!
RICHARD 
 Thou and thy brother both shall buy this treason
70 Even with the dearest blood your bodies bear!
Montague and his troops exit as through a city gate.
KING EDWARD 
 The harder matched, the greater victory.
 My mind presageth happy gain and conquest.

Enter Somerset, below, wearing the red rose,
with Soldiers, Drum and Colors.


SOMERSET Somerset, Somerset for Lancaster!

221
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 1

RICHARD 
 Two of thy name, both dukes of Somerset,
75 Have sold their lives unto the house of York,
 And thou shalt be the third, if this sword hold.
Somerset and his troops exit as through a city gate.

Enter Clarence, below, wearing the red rose,
with Soldiers, Drum and Colors.


WARWICK 
 And lo, where George of Clarence sweeps along,
 Of force enough to bid his brother battle,
 With whom an upright zeal to right prevails
80 More than the nature of a brother’s love.—
 Come, Clarence, come; thou wilt, if Warwick call.
CLARENCE 
 Father of Warwick, know you what this means?
He removes the red rose.
 Look, here I throw my infamy at thee.
He throws the rose at Warwick.
 I will not ruinate my father’s house,
85 Who gave his blood to lime the stones together
 And set up Lancaster. Why, trowest thou, Warwick,
 That Clarence is so harsh, so blunt, unnatural,
 To bend the fatal instruments of war
 Against his brother and his lawful king?
90 Perhaps thou wilt object my holy oath.
 To keep that oath were more impiety
 Than Jephthah when he sacrificed his daughter.
 I am so sorry for my trespass made
 That, to deserve well at my brother’s hands,
95 I here proclaim myself thy mortal foe,
 With resolution, wheresoe’er I meet thee—
 As I will meet thee if thou stir abroad—
 To plague thee for thy foul misleading me.
 And so, proud-hearted Warwick, I defy thee
100 And to my brother turn my blushing cheeks.—

223
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 2

 Pardon me, Edward, I will make amends.—
 And, Richard, do not frown upon my faults,
 For I will henceforth be no more unconstant.
KING EDWARD 
 Now, welcome more, and ten times more beloved,
105 Than if thou never hadst deserved our hate.
RICHARD 
 Welcome, good Clarence; this is brother-like.
WARWICK 
 O, passing traitor, perjured and unjust.
KING EDWARD 
 What, Warwick, wilt thou leave the town and fight?
 Or shall we beat the stones about thine ears?
WARWICK 
110 Alas, I am not cooped here for defense.
 I will away towards Barnet presently
 And bid thee battle, Edward, if thou dar’st.
KING EDWARD 
 Yes, Warwick, Edward dares, and leads the way.—
Warwick exits from the walls and descends.
 Lords, to the field! Saint George and victory!
They exit. March. Warwick and his company follows.


Scene 2
Alarum and excursions. Enter King Edward,
wearing the white rose, bringing forth Warwick,
wearing the red rose, wounded.


KING EDWARD 
 So, lie thou there. Die thou, and die our fear,
 For Warwick was a bug that feared us all.
 Now, Montague, sit fast. I seek for thee,
 That Warwick’s bones may keep thine company.
He exits.

225
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 2

WARWICK 
5 Ah, who is nigh? Come to me, friend or foe,
 And tell me who is victor, York or Warwick?
 Why ask I that? My mangled body shows,
 My blood, my want of strength, my sick heart shows
 That I must yield my body to the earth
10 And, by my fall, the conquest to my foe.
 Thus yields the cedar to the axe’s edge,
 Whose arms gave shelter to the princely eagle,
 Under whose shade the ramping lion slept,
 Whose top branch overpeered Jove’s spreading tree
15 And kept low shrubs from winter’s pow’rful wind.
 These eyes, that now are dimmed with death’s black
 veil,
 Have been as piercing as the midday sun
 To search the secret treasons of the world.
20 The wrinkles in my brows, now filled with blood,
 Were likened oft to kingly sepulchers,
 For who lived king but I could dig his grave?
 And who durst smile when Warwick bent his brow?
 Lo, now my glory smeared in dust and blood!
25 My parks, my walks, my manors that I had
 Even now forsake me; and of all my lands
 Is nothing left me but my body’s length.
 Why, what is pomp, rule, reign, but earth and dust?
 And live we how we can, yet die we must.

Enter Oxford and Somerset, both wearing the red rose.

SOMERSET 
30 Ah, Warwick, Warwick, wert thou as we are,
 We might recover all our loss again.
 The Queen from France hath brought a puissant
 power;
 Even now we heard the news. Ah, could’st thou fly—
WARWICK 
35 Why, then, I would not fly. Ah, Montague,

227
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 3

 If thou be there, sweet brother, take my hand
 And with thy lips keep in my soul awhile.
 Thou lov’st me not, for, brother, if thou didst,
 Thy tears would wash this cold congealèd blood
40 That glues my lips and will not let me speak.
 Come quickly, Montague, or I am dead.
SOMERSET 
 Ah, Warwick, Montague hath breathed his last,
 And to the latest gasp cried out for Warwick,
 And said “Commend me to my valiant brother.”
45 And more he would have said, and more he spoke,
 Which sounded like a cannon in a vault,
 That mought not be distinguished, but at last
 I well might hear, delivered with a groan,
 “O, farewell, Warwick.”
WARWICK 
50 Sweet rest his soul! Fly, lords, and save yourselves,
 For Warwick bids you all farewell to meet in heaven.
He dies.
OXFORD 
 Away, away, to meet the Queen’s great power!
Here they bear away his body. They exit.


Scene 3
Flourish. Enter King Edward in triumph, with Richard,
Clarence, and the rest, all wearing the white rose.


KING EDWARD 
 Thus far our fortune keeps an upward course,
 And we are graced with wreaths of victory.
 But in the midst of this bright-shining day,
 I spy a black suspicious threat’ning cloud
5 That will encounter with our glorious sun
 Ere he attain his easeful western bed.
 I mean, my lords, those powers that the Queen

229
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 4

 Hath raised in Gallia have arrived our coast
 And, as we hear, march on to fight with us.
CLARENCE 
10 A little gale will soon disperse that cloud
 And blow it to the source from whence it came;
 Thy very beams will dry those vapors up,
 For every cloud engenders not a storm.
RICHARD 
 The Queen is valued thirty thousand strong,
15 And Somerset, with Oxford, fled to her.
 If she have time to breathe, be well assured
 Her faction will be full as strong as ours.
KING EDWARD 
 We are advertised by our loving friends
 That they do hold their course toward Tewkesbury.
20 We having now the best at Barnet Field
 Will thither straight, for willingness rids way,
 And, as we march, our strength will be augmented
 In every county as we go along.
 Strike up the drum, cry “Courage!” and away.
They exit.


Scene 4
Flourish. March. Enter Queen Margaret,
young Prince Edward, Somerset, Oxford,
and Soldiers, all wearing the red rose.


QUEEN MARGARET 
 Great lords, wise men ne’er sit and wail their loss
 But cheerly seek how to redress their harms.
 What though the mast be now blown overboard,
 The cable broke, the holding-anchor lost,
5 And half our sailors swallowed in the flood?
 Yet lives our pilot still. Is ’t meet that he
 Should leave the helm and, like a fearful lad,

231
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 4

 With tearful eyes add water to the sea
 And give more strength to that which hath too much,
10 Whiles in his moan the ship splits on the rock,
 Which industry and courage might have saved?
 Ah, what a shame, ah, what a fault were this!
 Say Warwick was our anchor; what of that?
 And Montague our topmast; what of him?
15 Our slaughtered friends the tackles; what of these?
 Why, is not Oxford here another anchor?
 And Somerset another goodly mast?
 The friends of France our shrouds and tacklings?
 And, though unskillful, why not Ned and I
20 For once allowed the skillful pilot’s charge?
 We will not from the helm to sit and weep,
 But keep our course, though the rough wind say no,
 From shelves and rocks that threaten us with wrack.
 As good to chide the waves as speak them fair.
25 And what is Edward but a ruthless sea?
 What Clarence but a quicksand of deceit?
 And Richard but a ragged fatal rock—
 All these the enemies to our poor bark?
 Say you can swim: alas, ’tis but awhile;
30 Tread on the sand: why, there you quickly sink;
 Bestride the rock: the tide will wash you off
 Or else you famish; that’s a threefold death.
 This speak I, lords, to let you understand,
 If case some one of you would fly from us,
35 That there’s no hoped-for mercy with the brothers
 More than with ruthless waves, with sands and rocks.
 Why, courage then! What cannot be avoided
 ’Twere childish weakness to lament or fear.
PRINCE EDWARD 
 Methinks a woman of this valiant spirit
40 Should, if a coward heard her speak these words,
 Infuse his breast with magnanimity
 And make him, naked, foil a man-at-arms.

233
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 4

 I speak not this as doubting any here,
 For did I but suspect a fearful man,
45 He should have leave to go away betimes,
 Lest in our need he might infect another
 And make him of like spirit to himself.
 If any such be here, as God forbid,
 Let him depart before we need his help.
OXFORD 
50 Women and children of so high a courage,
 And warriors faint? Why, ’twere perpetual shame!
 O, brave young prince, thy famous grandfather
 Doth live again in thee. Long mayst thou live
 To bear his image and renew his glories!
SOMERSET 
55 And he that will not fight for such a hope,
 Go home to bed and, like the owl by day,
 If he arise, be mocked and wondered at.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Thanks, gentle Somerset.—Sweet Oxford, thanks.
PRINCE EDWARD 
 And take his thanks that yet hath nothing else.

Enter a Messenger.

MESSENGER 
60 Prepare you, lords, for Edward is at hand,
 Ready to fight. Therefore be resolute.He exits.
OXFORD 
 I thought no less. It is his policy
 To haste thus fast to find us unprovided.
SOMERSET 
 But he’s deceived. We are in readiness.
QUEEN MARGARET 
65 This cheers my heart to see your forwardness.
OXFORD 
 Here pitch our battle; hence we will not budge.

235
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 5

Flourish, and march. Enter King Edward, Richard,
Clarence, and Soldiers, all wearing the white rose.


KING EDWARD, to his army 
 Brave followers, yonder stands the thorny wood
 Which by the heavens’ assistance and your strength
 Must by the roots be hewn up yet ere night.
70 I need not add more fuel to your fire,
 For, well I wot, you blaze to burn them out.
 Give signal to the fight, and to it, lords!
QUEEN MARGARET, to her army 
 Lords, knights, and gentlemen, what I should say
 My tears gainsay, for every word I speak
75 You see I drink the water of my eye.
 Therefore, no more but this: Henry, your sovereign,
 Is prisoner to the foe, his state usurped,
 His realm a slaughterhouse, his subjects slain,
 His statutes cancelled and his treasure spent,
80 And yonder is the wolf that makes this spoil.
 You fight in justice. Then, in God’s name, lords,
 Be valiant, and give signal to the fight!
Alarum, retreat, excursions. They exit.


Scene 5
Flourish. Enter King Edward, Richard, and
Clarence, all wearing the white rose, with Soldiers
guarding Queen Margaret, Oxford, and Somerset,
all wearing the red rose, prisoners.


KING EDWARD 
 Now here a period of tumultuous broils.
 Away with Oxford to Hames Castle straight.
 For Somerset, off with his guilty head.
 Go bear them hence. I will not hear them speak.

237
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 5

OXFORD 
5 For my part, I’ll not trouble thee with words.
SOMERSET 
 Nor I, but stoop with patience to my fortune.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 So part we sadly in this troublous world
 To meet with joy in sweet Jerusalem.
Oxford and Somerset exit, under guard.
KING EDWARD 
 Is proclamation made that who finds Edward
10 Shall have a high reward, and he his life?
RICHARD 
 It is, and lo where youthful Edward comes.

Enter Prince Edward, wearing the red rose,
under guard.


KING EDWARD 
 Bring forth the gallant; let us hear him speak.
 What, can so young a thorn begin to prick?—
 Edward, what satisfaction canst thou make
15 For bearing arms, for stirring up my subjects,
 And all the trouble thou hast turned me to?
PRINCE EDWARD 
 Speak like a subject, proud ambitious York.
 Suppose that I am now my father’s mouth:
 Resign thy chair, and where I stand, kneel thou,
20 Whilst I propose the selfsame words to thee
 Which, traitor, thou wouldst have me answer to.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Ah, that thy father had been so resolved!
RICHARD 
 That you might still have worn the petticoat
 And ne’er have stol’n the breech from Lancaster.
PRINCE EDWARD 
25 Let Aesop fable in a winter’s night;
 His currish riddles sorts not with this place.

239
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 5

RICHARD 
 By heaven, brat, I’ll plague you for that word.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Ay, thou wast born to be a plague to men.
RICHARD 
 For God’s sake, take away this captive scold.
PRINCE EDWARD 
30 Nay, take away this scolding crookback, rather.
KING EDWARD 
 Peace, willful boy, or I will charm your tongue.
CLARENCE, to Prince Edward 
 Untutored lad, thou art too malapert.
PRINCE EDWARD 
 I know my duty. You are all undutiful.
 Lascivious Edward, and thou perjured George,
35 And thou misshapen Dick, I tell you all
 I am your better, traitors as you are,
 And thou usurp’st my father’s right and mine.
KING EDWARD 
 Take that, the likeness of this railer here!Stabs him.
RICHARD 
 Sprawl’st thou? Take that to end thy agony!
Richard stabs him.
CLARENCE 
40 And there’s for twitting me with perjury.
Clarence stabs him.
QUEEN MARGARET O, kill me too!
RICHARD Marry, and shall.Offers to kill her.
KING EDWARD 
 Hold, Richard, hold, for we have done too much.
RICHARD 
 Why should she live to fill the world with words?
Queen Margaret faints.
KING EDWARD 
45 What, doth she swoon? Use means for her recovery.
They attempt to revive her.

241
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 5

RICHARD, taking Clarence aside 
 Clarence, excuse me to the King my brother.
 I’ll hence to London on a serious matter.
 Ere you come there, be sure to hear some news.
CLARENCE What? What?
RICHARD 50The Tower, the Tower!He exits.
QUEEN MARGARET, rising from her swoon 
 O Ned, sweet Ned, speak to thy mother, boy.
 Canst thou not speak? O traitors, murderers!
 They that stabbed Caesar shed no blood at all,
 Did not offend, nor were not worthy blame,
55 If this foul deed were by to equal it.
 He was a man; this, in respect, a child,
 And men ne’er spend their fury on a child.
 What’s worse than murderer, that I may name it?
 No, no, my heart will burst an if I speak,
60 And I will speak, that so my heart may burst.
 Butchers and villains, bloody cannibals,
 How sweet a plant have you untimely cropped!
 You have no children, butchers. If you had,
 The thought of them would have stirred up remorse.
65 But if you ever chance to have a child,
 Look in his youth to have him so cut off
 As, deathsmen, you have rid this sweet young prince.
KING EDWARD 
 Away with her. Go bear her hence perforce.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Nay, never bear me hence! Dispatch me here.
70 Here sheathe thy sword; I’ll pardon thee my death.
 What, wilt thou not?—Then, Clarence, do it thou.
CLARENCE 
 By heaven, I will not do thee so much ease.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 Good Clarence, do! Sweet Clarence, do thou do it.
CLARENCE 
 Didst thou not hear me swear I would not do it?

243
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 6

QUEEN MARGARET 
75 Ay, but thou usest to forswear thyself.
 ’Twas sin before, but now ’tis charity.
 What, wilt thou not? Where is that devil’s butcher,
 Richard,
 Hard-favored Richard? Richard, where art thou?
80 Thou art not here. Murder is thy alms-deed;
 Petitioners for blood thou ne’er putt’st back.
KING EDWARD 
 Away, I say! (To Soldiers.) I charge you bear her
 hence.
QUEEN MARGARET 
 So come to you and yours as to this prince!
Queen Margaret exits under guard.
Soldiers carry off Prince Edward’s body.

KING EDWARD 85Where’s Richard gone?
CLARENCE 
 To London all in post, and, as I guess,
 To make a bloody supper in the Tower.
KING EDWARD 
 He’s sudden if a thing comes in his head.
 Now march we hence. Discharge the common sort
90 With pay and thanks, and let’s away to London
 And see our gentle queen how well she fares.
 By this I hope she hath a son for me.
They exit.


Scene 6
Enter King Henry the Sixth, wearing the red rose,
and Richard of Gloucester, wearing the white rose,
with the Lieutenant above on the Tower walls.


RICHARD 
 Good day, my lord. What, at your book so hard?

245
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 6

KING HENRY 
 Ay, my good lord—“my lord,” I should say rather.
 ’Tis sin to flatter; “good” was little better:
 “Good Gloucester” and “good devil” were alike,
5 And both preposterous: therefore, not “good lord.”
RICHARD, to Lieutenant 
 Sirrah, leave us to ourselves; we must confer.
Lieutenant exits.
KING HENRY 
 So flies the reckless shepherd from the wolf;
 So first the harmless sheep doth yield his fleece
 And next his throat unto the butcher’s knife.
10 What scene of death hath Roscius now to act?
RICHARD 
 Suspicion always haunts the guilty mind;
 The thief doth fear each bush an officer.
KING HENRY 
 The bird that hath been limèd in a bush,
 With trembling wings misdoubteth every bush;
15 And I, the hapless male to one sweet bird,
 Have now the fatal object in my eye
 Where my poor young was limed, was caught, and
 killed.
RICHARD 
 Why, what a peevish fool was that of Crete
20 That taught his son the office of a fowl!
 And yet, for all his wings, the fool was drowned.
KING HENRY 
 I Daedalus, my poor boy Icarus,
 Thy father Minos, that denied our course;
 The sun that seared the wings of my sweet boy
25 Thy brother Edward, and thyself the sea
 Whose envious gulf did swallow up his life.
 Ah, kill me with thy weapon, not with words!
 My breast can better brook thy dagger’s point

247
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 6

 Than can my ears that tragic history.
30 But wherefore dost thou come? Is ’t for my life?
RICHARD 
 Think’st thou I am an executioner?
KING HENRY 
 A persecutor I am sure thou art.
 If murdering innocents be executing,
 Why, then, thou art an executioner.
RICHARD 
35 Thy son I killed for his presumption.
KING HENRY 
 Hadst thou been killed when first thou didst presume,
 Thou hadst not lived to kill a son of mine.
 And thus I prophesy: that many a thousand
 Which now mistrust no parcel of my fear,
40 And many an old man’s sigh, and many a widow’s
 And many an orphan’s water-standing eye,
 Men for their sons, wives for their husbands,
 Orphans for their parents’ timeless death,
 Shall rue the hour that ever thou wast born.
45 The owl shrieked at thy birth, an evil sign;
 The night-crow cried, aboding luckless time;
 Dogs howled, and hideous tempest shook down trees;
 The raven rooked her on the chimney’s top;
 And chatt’ring pies in dismal discords sung;
50 Thy mother felt more than a mother’s pain,
 And yet brought forth less than a mother’s hope:
 To wit, an indigested and deformèd lump,
 Not like the fruit of such a goodly tree.
 Teeth hadst thou in thy head when thou wast born
55 To signify thou cam’st to bite the world.
 And if the rest be true which I have heard,
 Thou cam’st—
RICHARD 
 I’ll hear no more. Die, prophet, in thy speech;

249
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 6

Stabs him.
 For this amongst the rest was I ordained.
KING HENRY 
60 Ay, and for much more slaughter after this.
 O God, forgive my sins, and pardon thee.Dies.
RICHARD 
 What, will the aspiring blood of Lancaster
 Sink in the ground? I thought it would have mounted.
 See how my sword weeps for the poor king’s death.
65 O, may such purple tears be always shed
 From those that wish the downfall of our house.
 If any spark of life be yet remaining,
 Down, down to hell, and say I sent thee thither—
Stabs him again.
 I that have neither pity, love, nor fear.
70 Indeed, ’tis true that Henry told me of,
 For I have often heard my mother say
 I came into the world with my legs forward.
 Had I not reason, think you, to make haste
 And seek their ruin that usurped our right?
75 The midwife wondered, and the women cried
 “O Jesus bless us, he is born with teeth!”
 And so I was, which plainly signified
 That I should snarl, and bite, and play the dog.
 Then, since the heavens have shaped my body so,
80 Let hell make crook’d my mind to answer it.
 I have no brother, I am like no brother;
 And this word “love,” which graybeards call divine,
 Be resident in men like one another
 And not in me. I am myself alone.
85 Clarence, beware; thou keep’st me from the light,
 But I will sort a pitchy day for thee;
 For I will buzz abroad such prophecies
 That Edward shall be fearful of his life;
 And then to purge his fear, I’ll be thy death.
90 King Henry and the Prince his son are gone.

251
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 7

 Clarence, thy turn is next, and then the rest,
 Counting myself but bad till I be best.
 I’ll throw thy body in another room,
 And triumph, Henry, in thy day of doom.
He exits, carrying out the body.


>
Scene 7
Flourish. Enter King Edward, Queen Elizabeth,
Clarence, Richard of Gloucester, Hastings, Nurse,
carrying infant Prince Edward, and Attendants.


KING EDWARD 
 Once more we sit in England’s royal throne,
 Repurchased with the blood of enemies.
 What valiant foemen, like to autumn’s corn,
 Have we mowed down in tops of all their pride!
5 Three dukes of Somerset, threefold renowned
 For hardy and undoubted champions;
 Two Cliffords, as the father and the son;
 And two Northumberlands; two braver men
 Ne’er spurred their coursers at the trumpet’s sound.
10 With them the two brave bears, Warwick and
 Montague,
 That in their chains fettered the kingly lion
 And made the forest tremble when they roared.
 Thus have we swept suspicion from our seat
15 And made our footstool of security.—
 Come hither, Bess, and let me kiss my boy.—
 Young Ned, for thee, thine uncles and myself
 Have in our armors watched the winter’s night,
 Went all afoot in summer’s scalding heat,
20 That thou mightst repossess the crown in peace,
 And of our labors thou shalt reap the gain.

253
Henry VI, Part 3
ACT 5. SC. 7

RICHARD, aside 
 I’ll blast his harvest, if your head were laid;
 For yet I am not looked on in the world.
 This shoulder was ordained so thick to heave,
25 And heave it shall some weight or break my back.
 Work thou the way and that shalt execute.
KING EDWARD 
 Clarence and Gloucester, love my lovely queen,
 And kiss your princely nephew, brothers both.
CLARENCE 
 The duty that I owe unto your Majesty
30 I seal upon the lips of this sweet babe.
He kisses the infant.
KING EDWARD 
 Thanks, noble Clarence; worthy brother, thanks.
RICHARD 
 And that I love the tree from whence thou sprang’st,
 Witness the loving kiss I give the fruit.
He kisses the infant.
 Aside. To say the truth, so Judas kissed his master
35 And cried “All hail!” whenas he meant all harm.
KING EDWARD 
 Now am I seated as my soul delights,
 Having my country’s peace and brothers’ loves.
CLARENCE 
 What will your Grace have done with Margaret?
 Reignier, her father, to the King of France
40 Hath pawned the Sicils and Jerusalem,
 And hither have they sent it for her ransom.
KING EDWARD 
 Away with her, and waft her hence to France.
 And now what rests but that we spend the time
 With stately triumphs, mirthful comic shows,
45 Such as befits the pleasure of the court?
 Sound drums and trumpets! Farewell, sour annoy,
 For here I hope begins our lasting joy.
Flourish. They all exit.