Speeches (Lines) for Queen Margaret
in "Richard III"

Total: 33

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# Act, Scene, Line
(Click to see in context)
Speech text

1

I,3,574

Queen Elizabeth. My Lord of Gloucester, I have too long borne
Your blunt upbraidings and your bitter scoffs:
By heaven, I will acquaint his majesty
With those gross taunts I often have endured.
I had rather be a country servant-maid
Than a great queen, with this condition,
To be thus taunted, scorn'd, and baited at:
[Enter QUEEN MARGARET, behind]
Small joy have I in being England's queen.

Queen Margaret. And lessen'd be that small, God, I beseech thee!
Thy honour, state and seat is due to me.


2

I,3,581

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). What! threat you me with telling of the king?
Tell him, and spare not: look, what I have said
I will avouch in presence of the king:
I dare adventure to be sent to the Tower.
'Tis time to speak; my pains are quite forgot.

Queen Margaret. Out, devil! I remember them too well:
Thou slewest my husband Henry in the Tower,
And Edward, my poor son, at Tewksbury.


3

I,3,589

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). Ere you were queen, yea, or your husband king,
I was a pack-horse in his great affairs;
A weeder-out of his proud adversaries,
A liberal rewarder of his friends:
To royalize his blood I spilt mine own.

Queen Margaret. Yea, and much better blood than his or thine.


4

I,3,597

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). In all which time you and your husband Grey
Were factious for the house of Lancaster;
And, Rivers, so were you. Was not your husband
In Margaret's battle at Saint Alban's slain?
Let me put in your minds, if you forget,
What you have been ere now, and what you are;
Withal, what I have been, and what I am.

Queen Margaret. A murderous villain, and so still thou art.


5

I,3,600

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). Poor Clarence did forsake his father, Warwick;
Yea, and forswore himself,—which Jesu pardon!—

Queen Margaret. Which God revenge!


6

I,3,606

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). To fight on Edward's party for the crown;
And for his meed, poor lord, he is mew'd up.
I would to God my heart were flint, like Edward's;
Or Edward's soft and pitiful, like mine
I am too childish-foolish for this world.

Queen Margaret. Hie thee to hell for shame, and leave the world,
Thou cacodemon! there thy kingdom is.


7

I,3,618

Queen Elizabeth. As little joy, my lord, as you suppose
You should enjoy, were you this country's king,
As little joy may you suppose in me.
That I enjoy, being the queen thereof.

Queen Margaret. A little joy enjoys the queen thereof;
For I am she, and altogether joyless.
I can no longer hold me patient.
[Advancing]
Hear me, you wrangling pirates, that fall out
In sharing that which you have pill'd from me!
Which of you trembles not that looks on me?
If not, that, I being queen, you bow like subjects,
Yet that, by you deposed, you quake like rebels?
O gentle villain, do not turn away!


8

I,3,629

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). Foul wrinkled witch, what makest thou in my sight?

Queen Margaret. But repetition of what thou hast marr'd;
That will I make before I let thee go.


9

I,3,632

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). Wert thou not banished on pain of death?

Queen Margaret. I was; but I do find more pain in banishment
Than death can yield me here by my abode.
A husband and a son thou owest to me;
And thou a kingdom; all of you allegiance:
The sorrow that I have, by right is yours,
And all the pleasures you usurp are mine.


10

I,3,652

Duke of Buckingham. Northumberland, then present, wept to see it.

Queen Margaret. What were you snarling all before I came,
Ready to catch each other by the throat,
And turn you all your hatred now on me?
Did York's dread curse prevail so much with heaven?
That Henry's death, my lovely Edward's death,
Their kingdom's loss, my woful banishment,
Could all but answer for that peevish brat?
Can curses pierce the clouds and enter heaven?
Why, then, give way, dull clouds, to my quick curses!
If not by war, by surfeit die your king,
As ours by murder, to make him a king!
Edward thy son, which now is Prince of Wales,
For Edward my son, which was Prince of Wales,
Die in his youth by like untimely violence!
Thyself a queen, for me that was a queen,
Outlive thy glory, like my wretched self!
Long mayst thou live to wail thy children's loss;
And see another, as I see thee now,
Deck'd in thy rights, as thou art stall'd in mine!
Long die thy happy days before thy death;
And, after many lengthen'd hours of grief,
Die neither mother, wife, nor England's queen!
Rivers and Dorset, you were standers by,
And so wast thou, Lord Hastings, when my son
Was stabb'd with bloody daggers: God, I pray him,
That none of you may live your natural age,
But by some unlook'd accident cut off!


11

I,3,680

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). Have done thy charm, thou hateful wither'd hag!

Queen Margaret. And leave out thee? stay, dog, for thou shalt hear me.
If heaven have any grievous plague in store
Exceeding those that I can wish upon thee,
O, let them keep it till thy sins be ripe,
And then hurl down their indignation
On thee, the troubler of the poor world's peace!
The worm of conscience still begnaw thy soul!
Thy friends suspect for traitors while thou livest,
And take deep traitors for thy dearest friends!
No sleep close up that deadly eye of thine,
Unless it be whilst some tormenting dream
Affrights thee with a hell of ugly devils!
Thou elvish-mark'd, abortive, rooting hog!
Thou that wast seal'd in thy nativity
The slave of nature and the son of hell!
Thou slander of thy mother's heavy womb!
Thou loathed issue of thy father's loins!
Thou rag of honour! thou detested—


12

I,3,699

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). Margaret.

Queen Margaret. Richard!


13

I,3,701

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). Ha!

Queen Margaret. I call thee not.


14

I,3,704

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). I cry thee mercy then, for I had thought
That thou hadst call'd me all these bitter names.

Queen Margaret. Why, so I did; but look'd for no reply.
O, let me make the period to my curse!


15

I,3,708

Queen Elizabeth. Thus have you breathed your curse against yourself.

Queen Margaret. Poor painted queen, vain flourish of my fortune!
Why strew'st thou sugar on that bottled spider,
Whose deadly web ensnareth thee about?
Fool, fool! thou whet'st a knife to kill thyself.
The time will come when thou shalt wish for me
To help thee curse that poisonous bunchback'd toad.


16

I,3,716

Lord Hastings. False-boding woman, end thy frantic curse,
Lest to thy harm thou move our patience.

Queen Margaret. Foul shame upon you! you have all moved mine.


17

I,3,718

Lord (Earl) Rivers. Were you well served, you would be taught your duty.

Queen Margaret. To serve me well, you all should do me duty,
Teach me to be your queen, and you my subjects:
O, serve me well, and teach yourselves that duty!


18

I,3,722

Marquis of Dorset. Dispute not with her; she is lunatic.

Queen Margaret. Peace, master marquess, you are malapert:
Your fire-new stamp of honour is scarce current.
O, that your young nobility could judge
What 'twere to lose it, and be miserable!
They that stand high have many blasts to shake them;
And if they fall, they dash themselves to pieces.


19

I,3,733

Richard III (Duke of Gloucester). Yea, and much more: but I was born so high,
Our aery buildeth in the cedar's top,
And dallies with the wind and scorns the sun.

Queen Margaret. And turns the sun to shade; alas! alas!
Witness my son, now in the shade of death;
Whose bright out-shining beams thy cloudy wrath
Hath in eternal darkness folded up.
Your aery buildeth in our aery's nest.
O God, that seest it, do not suffer it!
As it was won with blood, lost be it so!


20

I,3,741

Duke of Buckingham. Have done! for shame, if not for charity.

Queen Margaret. Urge neither charity nor shame to me:
Uncharitably with me have you dealt,
And shamefully by you my hopes are butcher'd.
My charity is outrage, life my shame
And in that shame still live my sorrow's rage.


21

I,3,747

Duke of Buckingham. Have done, have done.

Queen Margaret. O princely Buckingham I'll kiss thy hand,
In sign of league and amity with thee:
Now fair befal thee and thy noble house!
Thy garments are not spotted with our blood,
Nor thou within the compass of my curse.


22

I,3,754

Duke of Buckingham. Nor no one here; for curses never pass
The lips of those that breathe them in the air.

Queen Margaret. I'll not believe but they ascend the sky,
And there awake God's gentle-sleeping peace.
O Buckingham, take heed of yonder dog!
Look, when he fawns, he bites; and when he bites,
His venom tooth will rankle to the death:
Have not to do with him, beware of him;
Sin, death, and hell have set their marks on him,
And all their ministers attend on him.


23

I,3,764

Duke of Buckingham. Nothing that I respect, my gracious lord.

Queen Margaret. What, dost thou scorn me for my gentle counsel?
And soothe the devil that I warn thee from?
O, but remember this another day,
When he shall split thy very heart with sorrow,
And say poor Margaret was a prophetess!
Live each of you the subjects to his hate,
And he to yours, and all of you to God's!


24

IV,4,2792

(stage directions). [Enter QUEEN MARGARET]

Queen Margaret. So, now prosperity begins to mellow
And drop into the rotten mouth of death.
Here in these confines slily have I lurk'd,
To watch the waning of mine adversaries.
A dire induction am I witness to,
And will to France, hoping the consequence
Will prove as bitter, black, and tragical.
Withdraw thee, wretched Margaret: who comes here?


25

IV,4,2807

Queen Elizabeth. Ah, my young princes! ah, my tender babes!
My unblown flowers, new-appearing sweets!
If yet your gentle souls fly in the air
And be not fix'd in doom perpetual,
Hover about me with your airy wings
And hear your mother's lamentation!

Queen Margaret. Hover about her; say, that right for right
Hath dimm'd your infant morn to aged night.


26

IV,4,2812

Duchess of York. So many miseries have crazed my voice,
That my woe-wearied tongue is mute and dumb,
Edward Plantagenet, why art thou dead?

Queen Margaret. Plantagenet doth quit Plantagenet.
Edward for Edward pays a dying debt.


27

IV,4,2817

Queen Elizabeth. Wilt thou, O God, fly from such gentle lambs,
And throw them in the entrails of the wolf?
When didst thou sleep when such a deed was done?

Queen Margaret. When holy Harry died, and my sweet son.


28

IV,4,2829

(stage directions). [Sitting down by her]

Queen Margaret. If ancient sorrow be most reverend,
Give mine the benefit of seniory,
And let my woes frown on the upper hand.
If sorrow can admit society,
[Sitting down with them]
Tell o'er your woes again by viewing mine:
I had an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him;
I had a Harry, till a Richard kill'd him:
Thou hadst an Edward, till a Richard kill'd him;
Thou hadst a Richard, till a Richard killed him;


29

IV,4,2841

Duchess of York. I had a Richard too, and thou didst kill him;
I had a Rutland too, thou holp'st to kill him.

Queen Margaret. Thou hadst a Clarence too, and Richard kill'd him.
From forth the kennel of thy womb hath crept
A hell-hound that doth hunt us all to death:
That dog, that had his teeth before his eyes,
To worry lambs and lap their gentle blood,
That foul defacer of God's handiwork,
That excellent grand tyrant of the earth,
That reigns in galled eyes of weeping souls,
Thy womb let loose, to chase us to our graves.
O upright, just, and true-disposing God,
How do I thank thee, that this carnal cur
Preys on the issue of his mother's body,
And makes her pew-fellow with others' moan!


30

IV,4,2856

Duchess of York. O Harry's wife, triumph not in my woes!
God witness with me, I have wept for thine.

Queen Margaret. Bear with me; I am hungry for revenge,
And now I cloy me with beholding it.
Thy Edward he is dead, that stabb'd my Edward:
Thy other Edward dead, to quit my Edward;
Young York he is but boot, because both they
Match not the high perfection of my loss:
Thy Clarence he is dead that kill'd my Edward;
And the beholders of this tragic play,
The adulterate Hastings, Rivers, Vaughan, Grey,
Untimely smother'd in their dusky graves.
Richard yet lives, hell's black intelligencer,
Only reserved their factor, to buy souls
And send them thither: but at hand, at hand,
Ensues his piteous and unpitied end:
Earth gapes, hell burns, fiends roar, saints pray.
To have him suddenly convey'd away.
Cancel his bond of life, dear God, I prey,
That I may live to say, The dog is dead!


31

IV,4,2877

Queen Elizabeth. O, thou didst prophesy the time would come
That I should wish for thee to help me curse
That bottled spider, that foul bunch-back'd toad!

Queen Margaret. I call'd thee then vain flourish of my fortune;
I call'd thee then poor shadow, painted queen;
The presentation of but what I was;
The flattering index of a direful pageant;
One heaved a-high, to be hurl'd down below;
A mother only mock'd with two sweet babes;
A dream of what thou wert, a breath, a bubble,
A sign of dignity, a garish flag,
To be the aim of every dangerous shot,
A queen in jest, only to fill the scene.
Where is thy husband now? where be thy brothers?
Where are thy children? wherein dost thou, joy?
Who sues to thee and cries 'God save the queen'?
Where be the bending peers that flatter'd thee?
Where be the thronging troops that follow'd thee?
Decline all this, and see what now thou art:
For happy wife, a most distressed widow;
For joyful mother, one that wails the name;
For queen, a very caitiff crown'd with care;
For one being sued to, one that humbly sues;
For one that scorn'd at me, now scorn'd of me;
For one being fear'd of all, now fearing one;
For one commanding all, obey'd of none.
Thus hath the course of justice wheel'd about,
And left thee but a very prey to time;
Having no more but thought of what thou wert,
To torture thee the more, being what thou art.
Thou didst usurp my place, and dost thou not
Usurp the just proportion of my sorrow?
Now thy proud neck bears half my burthen'd yoke;
From which even here I slip my weary neck,
And leave the burthen of it all on thee.
Farewell, York's wife, and queen of sad mischance:
These English woes will make me smile in France.


32

IV,4,2913

Queen Elizabeth. O thou well skill'd in curses, stay awhile,
And teach me how to curse mine enemies!

Queen Margaret. Forbear to sleep the nights, and fast the days;
Compare dead happiness with living woe;
Think that thy babes were fairer than they were,
And he that slew them fouler than he is:
Bettering thy loss makes the bad causer worse:
Revolving this will teach thee how to curse.


33

IV,4,2920

Queen Elizabeth. My words are dull; O, quicken them with thine!

Queen Margaret. Thy woes will make them sharp, and pierce like mine.


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