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Richard II

DUCHESS OF YORKMy lord, you told me you would tell the rest,
When weeping made you break the story off,
of our two cousins coming into London.
DUKE OF YORKWhere did I leave?
DUCHESS OF YORKAt that sad stop, my lord,5
Where rude misgovern'd hands from windows' tops
Threw dust and rubbish on King Richard's head.
DUKE OF YORKThen, as I said, the duke, great Bolingbroke,
Mounted upon a hot and fiery steed
Which his aspiring rider seem'd to know,10
With slow but stately pace kept on his course,
Whilst all tongues cried 'God save thee,
You would have thought the very windows spake,
So many greedy looks of young and old15
Through casements darted their desiring eyes
Upon his visage, and that all the walls
With painted imagery had said at once
'Jesu preserve thee! welcome, Bolingbroke!'
Whilst he, from the one side to the other turning,20
Bareheaded, lower than his proud steed's neck,
Bespake them thus: 'I thank you, countrymen:'
And thus still doing, thus he pass'd along.
DUCHESS OF YORKAlack, poor Richard! where rode he the whilst?
DUKE OF YORKAs in a theatre, the eyes of men,25
After a well-graced actor leaves the stage,
Are idly bent on him that enters next,
Thinking his prattle to be tedious;
Even so, or with much more contempt, men's eyes
Did scowl on gentle Richard; no man cried 'God save him!'30
No joyful tongue gave him his welcome home:
But dust was thrown upon his sacred head:
Which with such gentle sorrow he shook off,
His face still combating with tears and smiles,
The badges of his grief and patience,35
That had not God, for some strong purpose, steel'd
The hearts of men, they must perforce have melted
And barbarism itself have pitied him.
But heaven hath a hand in these events,
To whose high will we bound our calm contents.40
To Bolingbroke are we sworn subjects now,
Whose state and honour I for aye allow.
DUCHESS OF YORKHere comes my son Aumerle.
DUKE OF YORKAumerle that was;
But that is lost for being Richard's friend,45
And, madam, you must call him Rutland now:
I am in parliament pledge for his truth
And lasting fealty to the new-made king.
DUCHESS OF YORKWelcome, my son: who are the violets now
That strew the green lap of the new come spring?50
DUKE OF AUMERLEMadam, I know not, nor I greatly care not:
God knows I had as lief be none as one.
DUKE OF YORKWell, bear you well in this new spring of time,
Lest you be cropp'd before you come to prime.
What news from Oxford? hold those justs and triumphs?55
DUKE OF AUMERLEFor aught I know, my lord, they do.
DUKE OF YORKYou will be there, I know.
DUKE OF AUMERLEIf God prevent not, I purpose so.
DUKE OF YORKWhat seal is that, that hangs without thy bosom?
Yea, look'st thou pale? let me see the writing.60
DUKE OF AUMERLEMy lord, 'tis nothing.
DUKE OF YORKNo matter, then, who see it;
I will be satisfied; let me see the writing.
DUKE OF AUMERLEI do beseech your grace to pardon me:
It is a matter of small consequence,65
Which for some reasons I would not have seen.
DUKE OF YORKWhich for some reasons, sir, I mean to see.
I fear, I fear,--
DUCHESS OF YORKWhat should you fear?
'Tis nothing but some bond, that he is enter'd into70
For gay apparel 'gainst the triumph day.
DUKE OF YORKBound to himself! what doth he with a bond
That he is bound to? Wife, thou art a fool.
Boy, let me see the writing.
DUKE OF AUMERLEI do beseech you, pardon me; I may not show it.75
DUKE OF YORKI will be satisfied; let me see it, I say.
[He plucks it out of his bosom and reads it]
Treason! foul treason! Villain! traitor! slave!
DUCHESS OF YORKWhat is the matter, my lord?
DUKE OF YORKHo! who is within there?
[Enter a Servant]
Saddle my horse.80
God for his mercy, what treachery is here!
DUCHESS OF YORKWhy, what is it, my lord?
DUKE OF YORKGive me my boots, I say; saddle my horse.
Now, by mine honour, by my life, by my troth,
I will appeach the villain.85
DUCHESS OF YORKWhat is the matter?
DUKE OF YORKPeace, foolish woman.
DUCHESS OF YORKI will not peace. What is the matter, Aumerle.
DUKE OF AUMERLEGood mother, be content; it is no more
Than my poor life must answer.90
DUCHESS OF YORKThy life answer!
DUKE OF YORKBring me my boots: I will unto the king.
[Re-enter Servant with boots]
DUCHESS OF YORKStrike him, Aumerle. Poor boy, thou art amazed.
Hence, villain! never more come in my sight.
DUKE OF YORKGive me my boots, I say.95
DUCHESS OF YORKWhy, York, what wilt thou do?
Wilt thou not hide the trespass of thine own?
Have we more sons? or are we like to have?
Is not my teeming date drunk up with time?
And wilt thou pluck my fair son from mine age,100
And rob me of a happy mother's name?
Is he not like thee? is he not thine own?
DUKE OF YORKThou fond mad woman,
Wilt thou conceal this dark conspiracy?
A dozen of them here have ta'en the sacrament,105
And interchangeably set down their hands,
To kill the king at Oxford.
DUCHESS OF YORKHe shall be none;
We'll keep him here: then what is that to him?
DUKE OF YORKAway, fond woman! were he twenty times my son,110
I would appeach him.
DUCHESS OF YORKHadst thou groan'd for him
As I have done, thou wouldst be more pitiful.
But now I know thy mind; thou dost suspect
That I have been disloyal to thy bed,115
And that he is a bastard, not thy son:
Sweet York, sweet husband, be not of that mind:
He is as like thee as a man may be,
Not like to me, or any of my kin,
And yet I love him.120
DUKE OF YORKMake way, unruly woman!
DUCHESS OF YORKAfter, Aumerle! mount thee upon his horse;
Spur post, and get before him to the king,
And beg thy pardon ere he do accuse thee.
I'll not be long behind; though I be old,125
I doubt not but to ride as fast as York:
And never will I rise up from the ground
Till Bolingbroke have pardon'd thee. Away, be gone!

Richard II, Act 5, Scene 3


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