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Clif. Urge it no more; lest that, instead of words, I send thee, Warwick, such a messenger, As shall revenge his death, before I stir. War. Poor Clifford ! how I scorn his worthless
threats ! York. Will you, we show our title to the crown? If not, our swords shall plead it in the field.
K. Hen. What title hast thou, traitor, to the crown? Thy father was, as thou art, duke of York; Thy grandfather, Roger Mortimer, earl of March : I am the son of Henry the fifth, Who made the dauphin and the French to stoop, And seiz'd upon their towns and provinces.
War. Talk not of France, sith thou hast lost it all.
K. Hen. The lord protector lost it, and not I; When I was crown'd, I was but nine months old.
Rich. You are old enough now, and yet, methinks
you lose :
Father, tear the crown from the usurper's head.
Edw. Sweet father, do so; set it on your head.
and honour'st arms, Let's fight it out, and not stand cavilling thus. Rich. Sound drums and trumpets, and the king
will fly. York. Sons, peace! K. Hen. Peace thou! and give king Henry leave
to speak. War. Plantagenet shall speak first :-hear him,
lords; And be you silent and attentive too, For he that interrupts him shall not live. K. Hen. Think'st thou that I will leave my kingly
throne, Wherein my grandsire, and my father, sat? No: first shall war unpeople this my
realm; Ay, and their colours--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.
War. But prove it, Henry, and thou shalt be king. K. Hen. Henry the fourth by conquest got the
York. 'Twas by rebellion against his king.
K. Hen. I know not what to say; my title's weak. Tell me, may not a king adopt an beir?
York. What theu ?
K. Hen. An if he may, then am I lawful king:
York. He rose against him, being bis sovereign, And made him to resign his crown perforce:
War. Suppose, my lords, he did it uncoustrain'd, Think
you, 'twere prejudicial to his crown? Exe. No; for he could not so resign his crown, But that the next heir should succeed and reign.
K. Hen. Art thou against us, duke of Exeter? Exe. His is the right, and therefore pardon me. York. Why whisper you, my lords, and answer
War. Depos'd he shall be, in despite of all.
Clif. King Henry, be thy title right or wrong, Lord Clifford vows to fight in thy defence :
May that ground gape, and swallow me alive,
War. Do right unto this princely duke of York; Or I will fill the house with armed men, And o'er the chair of state where now he sits, Write up his title with usurping blood.
[He stamps, and the Soldiers show themselves. K. Hen. My lord of Warwick, hear me but one
Let me, for this my life-time, reign as king.
K. Hen. I am content: Richard Plantagenet,
West. Farewell, faint-hearted and degenerate king, In whose cold blood no spark of honour bides.
North. Be thou a prey unto the house of York, And die in bands for this unmanly deed!
Clif. In dreadful war may'st thou be overcome! Or live in peace, abandon'd, and despis’d!
[Exeunt Northumberland, Clifford, and
Exe. They seek revenge, and therefore will not
yield. K. Hen. Ah, Exeter! War. Why should you sigh, my lord ? K. Hen. Not for myself, lord Warwick, but my
son, Whom I unnaturally shall disinherit. But, be it as it may:-1 here entail The crown to thee, and to thine heirs for ever; Conditionally, that here thou take an oath To cease this civil war, and, wbilst I live, To honour me as thy king and sovereign ; And neither by treason, nor hostility, To seek to put me down, and reign thyself. York. This oath I willingly take, and will perform.
Coming from the throne. War. Long live king Henry ! - Plantagenet, em
brace him. K. Hen. And long live thou, and these thy for
ward sons ! York. Now York and Lancaster are reconcil'd. Exë. Accurs'd be he, that seeks to make them
foes! (Senet. The Lords come forward. York. Farewell, my gracious lord ; I'll to my
castle. War. And I'll keep London, with my soldiers. Norf. And I to Norfolk with my followers. Mont. And I unto the sea, from whence I camc.
[Exeunt York and his Sons, Warwick,
Norfolk, Montague, Soldiers, and
Attendants. K. Hen. And I, with grief and sorrow, to the
court. Enter Queen MARGARET and the Prince of Wales.
Exe. Here comes the queen, whose looks bewray
K. Hen. Exeter, so will I.
[Going. Q. Mar. Nay, go not from me, I will follow thee. K. Hen. Be patient, gentle queen, and I will stay.
Q. Mar. Who can be patient in such extremes? Ah, wretched man! 'would I had died a maid, And never seen thee, never borne thee son, Seeing thou hast prov'd so unnatural a father! Hath he deserv'd to lose his birthright thus? Hadst thou but lov'd him half so well as I; Or felt that pain, which I did for him once; Or nourish'd him, as I did with my blood; Thou wouldst have left thy dearest heart-blood there, Rather than made that savage duke thine heir, And disinherited thine only son.
Prince. Father, you cannot disinherit me: If you be king, why should not I succeed? K. Hen. Pardon me, Margaret ;--pardon me,
sweet son ; The earl of Warwick, and the duke, enforc'd me. Q. Mar. Enforc'd thee! art thou king, and wilt be
forcod? I shame to hear thee speak. Ah, timorous wretch ! Thou bast undone thyself, thy son, and me; And given 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 sepulchre, And creep into it far before thy time? Warwick is chancellor, and the lord of Calais; Stern Falconbridge commands the narrow seas; The duke is made protector of the realm ; And yet shalt thou be safe? such safety finds The trembling lamb, environed with wolves. Had I been there, which am a silly woman, The soldiers should have toss'd me on their pikes, Before I would have granted to that act. But thou preferr'st thy life before