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But 'tis my presence that doth trouble ye.
Rancour will out: proud prelate, in thy face
I see thy fury: if I longer stay,
We shall begin our ancient bickerings.-
Lordings, farewell; and say, when I am gone,
I prophesied—France will be lost ere long. (9)
Car. So, there goes our protector in a rage.
'Tis known to you he is mine enemy;
Nay, more, an enemy unto you all;
And no great friend, I fear me, to the king.
Consider, lords, he is the next of blood,
And heir-apparent to the English crown:
Had Henry got an empire by his marriage,
And all the wealthy kingdoms of the west,
There's reason he should be displeas'd at it.
Look to it, lords; let not his smoothing words
Bewitch your hearts; be wise and circumspect.
What though the common people favour him,
Calling him “Humphrey, the good Duke of Gloster;"
Clapping their hands, and crying with loud voice,
“Jesu maintain your royal excellence !"
With “God preserve the good Duke Humphrey !"
I fear me, lords, for all this flattering gloss,
He will be found a dangerous protector.
Buck. Why should he, then, protect our sovereign,
He being of age to govern of himself ? —
Cousin of Somerset, join you with me,
And all together, with the Duke of Suffolk,
We'll quickly hoise Duke Humphrey from his seat.
Car. This weighty business will not brook delay;
I'll to the Duke of Suffolk presently.
[Exit. Som. Cousin of Buckingham, though Humphrey's pride And greatness of his place be grief to us, Yet let us watch the haughty cardinal: His insolence is more intolerable Than all the princes in the land beside : If Gloster be displac'd, he'll be protector.
Buck. Thou or I, Somerset, will be protector, 10) Despite Duke Humphrey or the cardinal.
[Exeunt Buckingham and Somerset. VOL. V.
Sal. Pride went before, ambition follows him.
While these do labour for their own preferment,
Behoves it us to labour for the realm.
I never saw but Humphrey duke of Gloster
Did bear him like a noble gentleman.
Oft have I seen the haughty cardinal-
More like a soldier than a man o' the church,
As stout and proud as he were lord of all-
Swear like a ruffian, and demean himself
Unlike the ruler of a commonweal.-
Warwick, my son, the comfort of my age,
Thy deeds, thy plainness, and thy housekeeping,
Have won the greatest favour of the commons,
Excepting none but good Duke Humphrey :-
And, brother York, thy acts in Ireland,
In bringing them to civil discipline;
Thy late exploits done in the heart of France,
When thou wert regent for our sovereign,
Have made thee fear'd and honour'd of the people :-
Join we together, for the public good,
In what we can, to bridle and suppress
The pride of Suffolk and the cardinal,
With Somerset's and Buckingham's ambition ;
And, as we may, cherish Duke Humphrey's deeds,
While they do tend the profit(V) of the land.
War. So God help Warwick, as he loves the land,
And common profit of his country!
York. [aside] And so says York, for he hath greatest
Sal. Then let's
Make haste away, and look unto the main.
War. Unto the main ! O father, Maine is lost,-
That Maine which by main force Warwick did win,
And would have kept so long as breath did last.
Main chance, father, you meant; but I meant Maine, -
Which I will win from France, or else be slain.
[Exeunt Warwick and Salisbury.
York. Anjou and Maine are given to the French ;
Paris is lost; the state of Normandy
Stands on a tickle point, now they are gone :
Suffolk concluded on the articles;
The peers agreed ; and Henry was well pleas'd
To change two dukedoms for a duke's fair daughter.
I cannot blame them all : what is 't to them ?
'Tis thine(12) they give away, and not their own.
Pirates may make cheap pennyworths of their pillage,
And purchase friends, and give to courtezans,
Still revelling, like lords, till all be gone;
While as the silly owner of the goods
Weeps over them, and wrings his helpless(13hands,
And shakes his head, and trembling stands aloof,
While all is shar'd, and all is borne away,
Ready to starve, and dare not touch his own :
So York must sit, and fret, and bite his tongue,
While his own lands are bargain'd for and sold.
Methinks the realms of England, France, and Ireland
Bear that proportion to my flesh and blood
As did the fatal brand Althæa burn'd
Unto the prince's heart of Calydon.
Anjou and Maine, both given unto the French!
Cold news for me; for I had hope of France,
Even as I have of fertile England's soil.
A day will come when York shall claim his own;
And therefore I will take the Nevils' parts,
And make a show of love to proud Duke Humphrey,
And, when I spy advantage, claim the crown,
For that's the golden mark I seek to hit:
Nor shall proud Lancaster usurp my right,
Nor hold the sceptre in his childish fist,
Nor wear the diadem upon his head,
Whose church-like humour(14) fits not for a crown.
Then, York, be still awhile, till time do serve :
Watch thou and wake, when others be asleep,
into the secrets of the state;
Till Henry, surfeiting in joys of love,
With his new bride and England's dear-bought queen,
And Humphrey with the peers be fall'n at jars :(15)
Then will I raise aloft the milk-white rose,
With whose sweet smell the air shall be perfum'd;
And in my standard bear the arms of York,
To grapple with the house of Lancaster;
And, force perforce, I'll make him yield the crown,
Whose bookish rule hath pull’d fair England down.
SCENE II. The same. A room in the Duke of GLOSTER'S
Enter GLOSTER and the Duchess.
Duch. Why droops my lord, like over-ripen'd corn
Hanging the head at Ceres' plenteous load ?
Why doth the great Duke Humphrey knit his brows,
As frowning at the favours of the world?
Why are thine eyes fix'd to the sullen earth,
Gazing on that which seems to dim thy sight?
What seest thou there? King Henry's diadem,
Enchas'd with all the honours of the world?
If so, gaze on, and grovel on thy face,
Until thy head be circled with the same.
Put forth thy hand, reach at the glorious gold :-
What, is 't too short? I'll lengthen it with mine;
And, having both together heav'd it up,
We'll both together lift our heads to heaven,
And never more abase our sight so low
As to vouchsafe one glance unto the ground.
Glo. O Nell, sweet Nell, if thou dost love thy lord,
Banish the canker of ambitious thoughts!
And may that thought, when I imagine ill
Against my king and nephew, virtuous Henry,
Be my last breathing in this mortal world!
My troublous dream(16) this night doth make me sad.
Duch. What dream'd my lord ? tell me, and I'll requite it With sweet rehearsal of my morning's dream.
Glo. Methought this staff, mine office' badge in court, Was broke in twain; by whom I have forgot, But, as I think, 'twas by the cardinal; And on the pieces of the broken wand Were plac'd the heads of Edmund duke of Somerset, And William de la Pole, first duke of Suffolk.
This was my dream : what it doth bode, God knows.
Duch. Tut, this was nothing but an argument
That he that breaks a stick of Gloster's grove
Shall lose his head for his presumption.
But list to me, my Humphrey, my sweet duke:
Methought I sat in seat of majesty
In the cathedral church of Westminster,
And in that chair where kings and queens are crown'd;
There(7) Henry and Dame Margaret kneel'd to me,
And on my head did set the diadem.
Glo. Nay, Eleanor, then must I chide outright:
Presumptuous dame, ill-nurtur'd Eleanor !
Art thou not second woman in the realm,
And the protector's wife, belov'd of him ?
Hast thou not worldly pleasure at command,
Above the reach or compass of thy thought?
And wilt thou still be hammering treachery,
To tumble down thy husband and thyself
From top of honour to disgrace's feet ?
Away from me, and let me hear no more !
Duch. What, what, my lord ! are you so choleric
With Eleanor, for telling but her dream?
Next time I'll keep my dreams unto myself,
And not be check'd.
Glo. Nay, be not angry; I am pleas'd again.
Enter a Messenger.
Mess. My lord protector, 'tis his highness' pleasure
You do prepare to ride unto Saint Alban's,
Whereas the king and queen do mean to hawk.
Glo. I go.— Come, Nell,—thou'lt ride with us, I'm
Duch. Yes, my good lord, I'll follow presently.
[Exeunt Gloster and Messenger.
Follow I must; I cannot go before,
While Gloster bears this base and humble mind.
Were I a man, a duke, and next of blood,
I would remove these tedious stumbling-blocks,
And smooth my way upon their headless necks;
And being a woman, I will not be slack