« EdellinenJatka »
But now this great succeeder '2 all repairs, The other, Langley :7; whose mild temperateness
Did tend unto a calmer quietness.
With these did Woodstock 19 interpose his part ;
Wrought his own ill, and others discontent. And had his heir 13 surviv'd him in due course, And these had all the manage of affairs, What limits, England, had'st thou found? What During the time the king was under years.
bar? What world could have resisted so great force? And in the first years of his government, O more than men! (two thunderbolts of war) Things pass'd at first: the wars in France proceed, Why did not time your joined worth divorce, Though not with that same fortune and event, To have made your several glories greater far?
Being now not follow'd with such careful heed : Too prodigal was Nature thus to do,
Our people here at home grown discontent, To spend in one age what should serve for two. ·
Through great exactions insurrections breed : But now the sceptre in this glorious state,
Private respects hinder'd the common-weal;
And idle ease doth on the mighty steal.
Too many kings breed factions in the court;
The head too weak, the members grown too great: Here with a stop that greatuess did abate,
Which evermore doth happen in this sort (threat When pow'r upon so weak a base did lie. Por, lest great fortune should presume too far,
When children rule; the plague which God doth
Unto those kingdoms, which he will transport Such oppositions interposed are.
To other lines, or utterly defeat. Never this island better peopled stood;
“ For, the ambitious once inur'd to reign, Never more men of might, and minds address'd;
Can never brook a private state again. Never inore princes of the royal blood, (If not too many for the public rest)
“ And kingdoms ever suffer this distress, Nor ever was more treasure, wealth, and good,
Wbere one, or many, guide the infant king ; Than when this Richard first the crown possessid,
Which one, or many, (tasting this excess The second of that name; in two accurs'd ;
Of greatness and command) can never bring And well we might have miss'd all but the first.
Their thoughts again t' obey, or to be less :
From hence these insolencies ever spring, In this man's reign began this fatal strife,
Contempt of others, whom they seek to foil; (The bloody argument whereof we treat) Then follow leagues, destruction, ruin, spoil." That dearly cost so many a prince his life, And spoil'd the weak; and even consum'd the great; And whether they which underwent this charge That, wherein all confusion was so rife,
Permit the king to take a youthful vein, As Memory ev'n grieves her to repeat:
That they their private better might enlarge : And would that time might now this knowledge lose, Or whether he himself would farther strain, But that 't is good to learn by others' woes. (Thinking his years sufficient to discharge
The government) and so assum'd the rein. Edward the Third being dead, had left this child is
Or howsoever, now his ear he lends (Son of his worthy son deceas'd of late)
To youthful counsel, and his lusts attends.
And courts were never barren yet of those,
Which could with subtle train, and apt advice, Supposing uncles, free from guile or hate,
Work on the prince's weakness, and dispose Would order all things for his better good,
Of feeble frailty, easy to entice. In the respect and honour of their blood.
And such no doubt about this king arose, Of these, John duke of Lancaster was one;
Whose flattery (the dang'rous nurse of vice) (Too great a subject grown for such a state:
Got hand upon his youth, to pleasures bent,
Which, led by them, did others discontent.
For now his uncles grew much to mislike
These ill proceedings : were it that they saw
Their nephew from their counsels to withdraw, 12 1326. Edward III.
(Seeing him of a nature flexible and weak) 13 Edward the Black Prince, who died before his Because they only would keep all in awe; father.
Or that indeed they found the king and state 14 Richard II. being but eleven years of age, was Abus'd by such as now in office sat. crowned king of England, 1377. 15 Richard II. son to the Black Prince.
17 Edmund Langley, earl of Cambridge, after 16 "The duke of Lancaster, entitled king of Castile, created duke of York. in the right of his wife Constance, eldest daughter 18 Thomas of Woodstock, after made duke of to king Peter.
Or rather else they all were in the fault;
Now that so much was granted, as was songht; Th' ambitious uncles, th' indiscreet young king, A reconcilement made, although not meant, The greedy council, and the minions paught, Appeas'd them all in sbox, but not in thought, And all together did this tempest bring.
Whilst every one seem'd outwardly content: Besides the times, with all injustice fraught, Though hereby king, nor peers, nor people got Concurr' with such confus'd misgoverning; More love, more strength, or easier government ; That we may truly say, “ this spoil'd the state, But every day things still succeeded worse: Youthful counsel, private gain, partial bate." “ For good froin kings is seldom drawn by force." And then the king, besides his jealousies
And lo, it thus continued, till by chance Which nourish'd were, had reason to be led
The queen (which was the emperor's daughter) To doubt bis uncles for their loyalties;
dy'd "; Since John of Gaunt (as was discovered)
When as the king, t establish peace with France, Had practised his death in secret wise;
And better for home-quiet to provide, And Gloc'ster openly becomes the head
Sought by contracting marriage to advance Unto a league, who all in arms were bent
His own affairs, against his uncle's pride; Toppose against the present government;
Took the young daughter 22 of king Charles to wife,
Which after, in the end, rais'd greater strife. Pretending to remove such men as were
For now his uncle Gloc'ster much repin'd Accounted to abuse the king and state.
Against this French alliance, and this peace; Of whom the chief they did accuse was Veere"),
As either out of a tumultuous mind, Made duke of Ireland with great grace of late;
(Which never was content the wars should cease:) And divere else 20, who for the place they bear
Or that he did dishonourable find Obnoxious are, and subject unto bate :
Those articles, which did our state decrease: And these must be sequester'd with all speed,
And therefore storm'd, because the crown had wrong;
The swift approaching mischiefs that attend.
And therefore watch'd but some occasion fit
Tattach the duke, when he thought least of it. And here had many worthy men their end, And fortune, to set forward this intent, [bring; Without all form, or any course of right.
The count St. Paule”, from France, doth hither “ For still these broils, ibat public good pretend, Whom Charles the Sixth employ'd in compliment, Work most injustice, being done through spite. To see the queen, and to salute the king: For those aggrieved evermore do bend
To whom he shows his uncle's discontent, Against such as they see of greatest might; And of his secret dangerous practising ; Who, though they cannot help what will go ill, How he bis subjects sought to sullevate, Yet since they may do wrong, are thought they And break the league with France concluded late. will."
To whom the count most cunningly replies; And yet herein I mean not to excuse
“ Great prince, it is within your power, with ease, The justices and minions of the king,
To remedy such fears, such jealousies, (Who might their office and their grace abuse) And rid you of such mutineers as these, But blame the course held in the managing. By cutting off that, which might greater rise ; “ For great men over grac'd, much rigour use; And now at first preventing this disease, Presuming favourites discontentment bring ; And that before he shall your wrath disclose : And disproportions harmony do break;
For who threats first, means of revenge doth lose. Minions too great, argue a king too weak."
« First take his head, then tell the reason why;
Stand not to find him guilty by your laws: "' Robert Veere, duke of Ireland.
You easier shall with him your quarrel try 20 Ann. reg. 11. the duke of Gloucester, with Dead than alive, who hath the better cause. the earls of Darby, Arundel, Nottingham, Warwick, For in the murmuring vulgar usually and other lords, having forced the king to put from This public course of yours compassion draws ; him all his officers of court at this parliament, Especially in cases of the great, caused most of them to be executed; as John Which work much pity in the undiscreet. Beauchamp, Jord steward of his house, sir Simon Burley, lord chamberlain, with many other. Also the lord chief justice was here executed, and all 21 Ann. reg. 18. the judges condemned to death, for maintaining the 22 Ann. 20. Isabel, daughter to Charles VI. king's prerogative against these lords, and the con- 23 Valerian, E. of S. Paule, who had married the stitutions of the last parliament, ann. 10.
* And this is sure, though his offence be such, The side of wrong t'wards him, who had long since Yet doth calamity attract commorse;
By parliament 2 forgiven this offence.
And in the upconceiving vulgar sort,
Of miracles effected on his grave:
“ Knew how each great example still must bave “ And oft the cause may come prevented so; Something of wrong, a taste of violence, And therefore when 't is done, let it be heard : Wherewith the public quiet doth dispense.” For thereby shall you 'scape your private woe, And satisfy the world too afterward.
The king forthwith provides him of a guard,
As th' argument his actions to defend :
But yet the world hereof conceiv'd so hard,
That all this nought avail'd bim in the end.
That is not guarded with firin love beside,”
Now storm his grieved uncles, though in vain,
But outwardly they needs must temporise. And show the world, that you have done but right." The king was great; and they should nothing gain
T'' attempt revenge, or offer once to rise : (strong, This counsel, uttered unto such an ear
This league with France had made him now so As willing listens to the safest ways,
That they must needs as yet endure this wrong. Works on the yielding matter of his fear, Which easily to any course obeys :
For like a lion that escapes his bounds, For every prince, seeing his danger near,
Having been long restrain'd his use to stray, By any means his quiet peace assays.
Ranges the restless woods, stays on no ground, " And still the greatest wrongs that ever were,
Riots with bloodshed, wantor on his prey ; Have then been wrought, when kings were put in Seeks not for need, but in his pride to wound, fear."
Glorying to see his strength, and what he may:
So this unbridled king, (freed of his fears)
For standing now alone, he sees his might
Out of the compass of respective awe;
And now begins to violate all right,
Now he exacts of all, wastes in delight,
Riots in pleasure, and neglects the law :
He thinks bis crown is licens'd to do ill: Long was it not ere Gloc'ster was convey'd
“ That less should list, that may do what it will." To Calice ?, and there strangled secretly:
Thus being transported in this sensual course; Warwick and Arundel close prisoners laid,
No friend to warn, no counsel to withstand, Th' especial men of his confederacy;
He still proceedeth on from bad to worse, Yet Warwick's tears and base confessions staid
Sooth'd in all actions that he took in hand 27, The doom of death, and came confin'd thereby, By such as all impiety did nurse, And so prolongs this not long base-begg'd breath;
Commending ever what he did command. But Arundel was put to public death.
“ Unhappy kings! that never may be taught
“ To know themselves, or to discern their fault." Which public death (receiv'd with such a chear, As not a sigh, a look, a shrink bewrays
And whilst this course did much the kingdom daunt, The least felt touch of a degenerous fear)
The duke of Her'ford 24 being of courage bold, Gave life to envy, to his courage praise;
As son and heir to mighty John of Gaunt, And made his stout defended cause appear Utters the passion which he could not hold, With such a face of right, as that it lays
Concerning those oppressions, and the want
Of government; which he to Norfolk 29 told, 24 At the parliament, in anno 11, LL of the league with Glocester, being pardoned for their op- 26 The king had by parliament before pardoned posing against the king's proceedings, were quiet | the duke, and these two earls; yet was the pardon till anno 21, when upon report of a new conspiracy, revoked. they were surprised.
27 ......... Nibil est quod credere de se non possit, 25 Mowbray, earl marshal, after made duke of cùm laudatur, Diis æqua potestas. Norfolk, had the charge of dispatching the duke of 24 Henry Bolingbroke of Hereford. Gloucester at Calice.
29 Thomas Mowbray, duke of Norfolk.
To th' end he (being great about the king) Unto the shore, with tears, with sighs, with moan, Might do some good, by better counselling. They him conduct; cursing the bounds that stay
Their willing feet, that would bave further gone, Hercof doth Norfolk presently take hold,
Had not the fearful ocean stopt their way: And to the king the whole discourse relate : " Why, Neptune, hast thou made us stand alone, Who not conceiting it as it was told,
Divided from the world, for this, say they ; But judging it proceeded out of hate,
Hemm'd in to be a spoil to tyranny, Disdain ng deeply to be so controllid;
Leaving affliction hence no way to fly? That others should his rule prejudicate, Charg'd Her'ford therewithal: who re-accus'd “ Are we lock'd up, poor souls, here to abide Norfolk, for words of treason he had as'd.
Within the watry prison of thy waves,
As in a fold, where, subject to the pride Norfolk denjes them peremptorily;
And lust of rulers, we remain as slaves; Her'ford recharg'd, and supplicates the king Here in the reach of Might, where none can hide To bave the combat of his enemy,
From th'eye of Wrath, but only in their graves? That by his sword he might approve the thing. Happy confiners you of other lands, Norfolk desires the same as earnestly :
That sift your soil, and oft 'scape tyrants bands. And both with equal courage menacing Revenge of wrong, that none knew which was free: “ And must we leave him here, whom here were fit For times of faction times of slander be.
We should retain, the pillar of our state?
Whose virtues well deserve to govern it, The combat granted, and the day assign'd, And not this wanton yoang effeminate. They both in order of the field appear,
Why should not he in regal honour sit, Most richly furnish'd in all martial kind,
That best knows how a realm ordinate? And at the point of intercombat were;
But one day yet we hope thou shalt bring back When lo! the king chang'd suddenly his mind, (Dear Bolingbroke) the justice that we lack.” Casts down his warder, to arrest them there; As being advis'd a better way to take,
Thus mutter'd (lo!) the malecontented sort, Which might for his more certain safety make. That love kings best before they have them still,
And never can the present state comport, For now considering (as it likely might)
But would as often change as they change will. The victory might hap on Herford's side,
For this good duke had won them in this sort, (A man most valiant, and of noble sprite,
By succ'ring them, and pitying of their ill; Belov'd of all, and ever worthy try'd;)
That they supposed straight it was one thing, How much he might be grac'd in public sight, To be both a good man and a good king. By such an act, as might advance his pride, And so become more popular by this ;
When as the graver sort that saw the course, Which he fears too inuch he already is.
And knew that princes may not be controlld,
Lik'd well to suffer this, for fear of worse ; And therefore be resolves to banish both 30, “ Since many great one kingdom cannot hold.” Though th' one in chiefest favour with him stood, For now they saw intestine strife of force A man he dearly lov'd; and might be loth
The apt-divided state entangle would,
By whom the yulgar body might be led.
They saw likewise, “ that princes oft are fain And such a one as now he doubted so.
To buy their quiet with the price of wrong:”
And better 't were that now a few complain, And therefore to perpetual exile he
Than all should mourn, as well the weak as strong; Mowbray condemns; Her'ford for but ten years:
Seeing still how little realms by change do gain: Thinking (for that the wrong of this decree,
And therefore learned by observing long, Compar'd with greater rigour, less appears)
“ T admire times past, follow the present will; It might of all the better liked be.
Wish for good princes, but t' endure the ill.”
For when it nought avails, what folly then
To strive against the current of the time?
Who will throw down himself, for other men, At whose departure hence out of the land,
That make a ladder by his fall to climb ?
Or who yould seek tembroil his country, when How did the open multitude reveal 'The wondrous love they bare bim under-hand!
He might have rest; suffʻring but others crime? Which now in this hot passion of their zeal
“ Since wise men ever have preferred far They plainly show'd, that all might understand
Th’ unjustest peace before the justest war." How dear he was unto the common-weal.
Thus they consider'd, that in quiet sat, They fear'd not to exclaim against the king, Rich, or content, or else unfit to strire; As one that sought all good men's ruining. Peace-lover Wealth, hating a troublous state,
Doth willing reasons for their rest contrive :
But if that all were thus considerate, 30 Mowbray was banished the very day (by the How should in court the great, the favour'd thrice? course of the year) whereon be murthered the duke Factions must be, and these varieties; of Glocester,
And some must fall, that other some may rise,
But long the duke remair'd not in exile,
For brought up in the broils of these two rea'ms, Before that John of Gaunt, his father, dies : They thought best fishing still in troubled streams. Upon whose 'state the king seiz'd now, this while Disposing of it as his enemy's.
Like to a river that is stopt bis course, This open wrong no longer could beguile
Doth violate his banks, breaks his own bed, The world, that saw these great indignities: Destroys his bounds, and over-runs by force Which so exasperates the minds of all,
The neighbour-fields, irregularly spread; That they resolv'd him home again to call. Even so this sudden stop of war doth purse
Home-broils within it self, from others led : For now they saw 't was malice in the king, So dangerous the change hereof is try'd, (Transported in his ill-conceited thought)
Ere minds 'come soft, or otherwise employ'd., That made him so to prosecute the thing Against all law, and in a course so naught. But all this makes for thee, O Bolingbroke, And this advantage to the duke did bring
To work a way unto thy sovereignty : More fit occasions, whereupon he wrought.
This care the Heavens, Fate, and Fortune took “ Por to a man so strong, and of such might, To bring thee to thy sceptre easily. He gives him more, that takes away his right." Upon thee falls that hap which him forsook ;
Who, crown'd a king, a king yet must not die. The king”, in this mean time, (I know not how) Thou wert ordain'd by Providence to raise Was drawn into some actions forth the land, A quarrel, lasting longer than thy days. T' appease the Irish, that revolted now : And there attending what he had in hand,
For now this absent lord out of his land, Neglects those parts from whence worse dangers (Where though he show'd great sprite and valour As ignorant how his affairs did stand. [grow, Being attended with a worthy band [then, Whether the plot was wrought it should be so, Of valiant peers, and most couragedas men) Or that his fate did draw him on to go,
Gave time to them at home, that had in hand
Th’ungodly work, and knew the season when; Most sure it is that he committed here
Who fait not to advise the duke with speed,
Soliciting to what he soon agreed.
Relying on his friends fidelity,
Landed in England ” ; welcom'd joyfully So blinds the sharpest counsels of the wise
Of th' alt'ring vulgar, apt for changes still, This overshadowing Providence on high,
As beadlong carry'd with a present will. and dazzleth all their clearest-sighted eyes, That they see not how nakedly they lie.
And com'ng to quiet shore, but not to rest, There where they little think, the storm doth rise, The first night of his joyful landing here, And overcasts their clear security;
A fearful visiop " doth his soul molest; When man hath stopt all ways, save only that Seeming to see in rev'rent form appear Which (as least doubted) ruin enters at.
A fair and goodly woman all distrest; And now was all disorder in th' excess,
Which, with full-weeping eyes and rented hair, And whatsoever doth a change portend;
Wringing ber hands, as one that griev'd and pray'd, As idle luxury, and wantonness,
With sighs commix'd with words unto him said: Porteus-like varying pride, vain without end;
“O! wither dost thou tend, my unkind son ? Wrong-worker Riot (motive to oppress) Endless exactions which the idle spend,
What mischief dost thou go about to bring
To her, whose Genius thoa here look'st upon, Consuming usury, and credits crack’d, Callid on this purging war that many lack'd.
Thy mother-country, whence thyself didst spring ?
Whither thus dost thou in ambition run, Then ill-persuading want, in martial minds, To change due course by foul disordering? And wronged patience, (long oppress’d with might) What bloodshed, what turmoils dost thou comLooseness in all, (which no religion binds)
To last for many wofal ages hence? [mence, Commanding force, (the measure made of right) Gave fuel to this fire; that easy finds
“ Stay here thy foot, thy yet anguilty foot, The way t’inflame, the whole endanger'd quite.
That can’st not stay when thou art further in: These were the public breeders of this war,
Retire thee yet unstain'd, whilst it doth boot; By which still greatest states confounded are. The end is spoil of what thou dost begin.
Injustice never yet took lasting root, For now this peace with France had shut in here Nor held that long, impiety did win: The overgrowing humours wars do spend : For where t evacuate no employments were, 33 The duke being banished in September, landed Wider th’ unweildy burthen doth distend.
in the beginning of July after, at Ravenspurre, in Men wholly us'd to war, peace could not bear, Yorkshire ; some say but with 60 men, others with As knowing no other course whereto to bend; 3000, and eight ships, set forth and furnished by
the duke of Bretagne, ann. reg. 22. » Anno regni 22.
33 The Genius of England appears to Bolingbroke.