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History of Richard II

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Act V, Scene 1

London. A street leading to the Tower.


[Enter QUEEN and Ladies]

  • Queen. This way the king will come; this is the way
    To Julius Caesar's ill-erected tower, 2335
    To whose flint bosom my condemned lord
    Is doom'd a prisoner by proud Bolingbroke:
    Here let us rest, if this rebellious earth
    Have any resting for her true king's queen.
    [Enter KING RICHARD II and Guard] 2340
    But soft, but see, or rather do not see,
    My fair rose wither: yet look up, behold,
    That you in pity may dissolve to dew,
    And wash him fresh again with true-love tears.
    Ah, thou, the model where old Troy did stand, 2345
    Thou map of honour, thou King Richard's tomb,
    And not King Richard; thou most beauteous inn,
    Why should hard-favour'd grief be lodged in thee,
    When triumph is become an alehouse guest?
  • King Richard II. Join not with grief, fair woman, do not so, 2350
    To make my end too sudden: learn, good soul,
    To think our former state a happy dream;
    From which awaked, the truth of what we are
    Shows us but this: I am sworn brother, sweet,
    To grim Necessity, and he and I 2355
    Will keep a league till death. Hie thee to France
    And cloister thee in some religious house:
    Our holy lives must win a new world's crown,
    Which our profane hours here have stricken down.
  • Queen. What, is my Richard both in shape and mind 2360
    Transform'd and weaken'd? hath Bolingbroke deposed
    Thine intellect? hath he been in thy heart?
    The lion dying thrusteth forth his paw,
    And wounds the earth, if nothing else, with rage
    To be o'erpower'd; and wilt thou, pupil-like, 2365
    Take thy correction mildly, kiss the rod,
    And fawn on rage with base humility,
    Which art a lion and a king of beasts?
  • King Richard II. A king of beasts, indeed; if aught but beasts,
    I had been still a happy king of men. 2370
    Good sometime queen, prepare thee hence for France:
    Think I am dead and that even here thou takest,
    As from my death-bed, thy last living leave.
    In winter's tedious nights sit by the fire
    With good old folks and let them tell thee tales 2375
    Of woeful ages long ago betid;
    And ere thou bid good night, to quit their griefs,
    Tell thou the lamentable tale of me
    And send the hearers weeping to their beds:
    For why, the senseless brands will sympathize 2380
    The heavy accent of thy moving tongue
    And in compassion weep the fire out;
    And some will mourn in ashes, some coal-black,
    For the deposing of a rightful king.

[Enter NORTHUMBERLAND and others]

  • Earl of Northumberland. My lord, the mind of Bolingbroke is changed:
    You must to Pomfret, not unto the Tower.
    And, madam, there is order ta'en for you;
    With all swift speed you must away to France.
  • King Richard II. Northumberland, thou ladder wherewithal 2390
    The mounting Bolingbroke ascends my throne,
    The time shall not be many hours of age
    More than it is ere foul sin gathering head
    Shalt break into corruption: thou shalt think,
    Though he divide the realm and give thee half, 2395
    It is too little, helping him to all;
    And he shall think that thou, which know'st the way
    To plant unrightful kings, wilt know again,
    Being ne'er so little urged, another way
    To pluck him headlong from the usurped throne. 2400
    The love of wicked men converts to fear;
    That fear to hate, and hate turns one or both
    To worthy danger and deserved death.
  • Earl of Northumberland. My guilt be on my head, and there an end.
    Take leave and part; for you must part forthwith. 2405
  • King Richard II. Doubly divorced! Bad men, you violate
    A twofold marriage, 'twixt my crown and me,
    And then betwixt me and my married wife.
    Let me unkiss the oath 'twixt thee and me;
    And yet not so, for with a kiss 'twas made. 2410
    Part us, Northumberland; I toward the north,
    Where shivering cold and sickness pines the clime;
    My wife to France: from whence, set forth in pomp,
    She came adorned hither like sweet May,
    Sent back like Hallowmas or short'st of day. 2415
  • Queen. And must we be divided? must we part?
  • Queen. Banish us both and send the king with me.
  • Queen. Then whither he goes, thither let me go. 2420
  • King Richard II. So two, together weeping, make one woe.
    Weep thou for me in France, I for thee here;
    Better far off than near, be ne'er the near.
    Go, count thy way with sighs; I mine with groans.
  • Queen. So longest way shall have the longest moans. 2425
  • King Richard II. Twice for one step I'll groan, the way being short,
    And piece the way out with a heavy heart.
    Come, come, in wooing sorrow let's be brief,
    Since, wedding it, there is such length in grief;
    One kiss shall stop our mouths, and dumbly part; 2430
    Thus give I mine, and thus take I thy heart.
  • Queen. Give me mine own again; 'twere no good part
    To take on me to keep and kill thy heart.
    So, now I have mine own again, be gone,
    That I might strive to kill it with a groan. 2435
  • King Richard II. We make woe wanton with this fond delay:
    Once more, adieu; the rest let sorrow say.