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Gav. Why, there are hospitals for such as you; I have no war, and therefore, sir, begone.

3 Man. Farewell, and perish by a soldier's hand, That would'st reward them with an hospital.

Gav. I, I, these words of his move me as much
As if a goose would play the porcupine,

And dart her plumes,1 thinking to pierce my breast.
But yet it is no pain to speak men fair;

I'll flatter these, and make them live in hope.
You know that I came lately out of France,
And yet I have not viewed my lord the king;
If I speed well, I'll entertain you all.

Omnes. We thank your worship.



Gav. I have some business. Leave me to myself.
Omnes. We will wait here about the court.

Gav. Do; these are not men for me;

I must have wanton poets, pleasant wits,
Musicians, that with touching of a string
May draw the pliant king which way I please.
Music and poetry is his delight;

Therefore I'll have Italian masks by night,
Sweet speeches, comedies, and pleasing shows;
And in the day, when he shall walk abroad,
Like silvian2 nymphs my pages shall be clad;
My men, like satyrs grazing on the lawns,



1 Mr. Tancock quotes from Pliny's Natural History:-" Hystrici longiores aculei et cum intendit cutem missiles. Ora urgentium figit canum et paulo longius jaculatur."

2 So the 4tos. -Dyce reads "sylvan."

Shall with their goat-feet dance the antic hay.1
Sometime a lovely boy in Dian's shape,
With hair that gilds the water as it glides,
Crownets of pearl about his naked arms,
And in his sportful hands an olive-tree,

To hide those parts which men delight to see,
Shall bathe him in a spring; and there hard by,
One like Actæon peeping through the grove,
Shall by the angry goddess be transformed,
And running in the likeness of an hart

By yelping hounds pulled down, and 2 seem to die ;-
Such things as these best please his majesty.

Here comes my lord the king, and [here] the nobles
From the parliament. I'll stand aside.



Enter the KING, LANCASTER, OLD MORTIMER, YOUNG MORTIMER, EDMUND, Earl of Kent, Guy, Earl of Warwick, &c.

Edw. Lancaster!

Lan. My lord.

Gav. That Earl of Lancaster do I abhor.


Edw. Will you not grant me this? In spite of them

1 The name of a rustic dance.

2 So the 4tos.-Dyce reads "shall."

3 The 4tos. read, "My lord, here comes the king and the nobles." Dyce gives, "Here comes my lord the king and the nobles." Mr. Fleay arranges the passage thus :

"Here comes my lord

The king and th' nobles from the parliament.

I'll stand aside."

I'll have my will; and these two Mortimers,

That cross me thus, shall know I am displeased.

E. Mor. If you love us, my lord, hate Gaveston. Gav. That villain Mortimer, I'll be his death! [Aside. Y. Mor. Mine uncle here, this earl, and I myself, 81 Were sworn1 to your father at his death,

That he should ne'er return into the realm:

And know, my lord, ere I will break my oath,

This sword of mine, that should offend your foes,
Shall sleep within the scabbard at thy need,

And underneath thy banners march who will,
For Mortimer will hang his armour up.

Gav. Mort dieu !


Edw. Well, Mortimer, I'll make thee rue these words. Beseems it thee to contradict thy king?

Frown'st thou thereat, aspiring Lancaster? 2
The sword shall plane the furrows of thy brows,
And hew these knees that now are grown so stiff.

I will have Gaveston; and you shall know
What danger 'tis to stand against your king.

Gav. Well done, Ned!



Lan. My lord, why do you thus incense your peers, That naturally would love and honour you

But for that base and obscure Gaveston ?

Four earldoms have I, besides Lancaster-
Derby, Salisbury, Lincoln, Leicester,
These will I sell, to give my soldiers pay,


1 Equivalent to a dissyllable.

2 Cf. 3 Henry VI. v. 6, “aspiring blood of Lancaster.'

Ere Gaveston shall stay within the realm;

Therefore, if he be come, expel him straight.

Edw. Barons and earls, your pride hath made me


But now I'll speak, and to the proof, I hope.

I do remember, in my father's days,

Lord Percy of the north, being highly moved,
Braved Moubery 1 in presence of the king;
For which, had not his highness loved him well,
He should have lost his head; but with his look
The undaunted spirit of Percy was appeased,
And Moubery and he were reconciled.
Yet dare you brave the king unto his face;
Brother, revenge it, and let these their heads

Preach upon poles, for trespass of their tongues.

War. O, our heads!


Edw. I, yours; and therefore I would wish you


War. Bridle thy anger, gentle Mortimer.

Y. Mor. I cannot, nor I will not; I must speak.
Cousin, our hands I hope shall fence our heads,
And strike off his that makes you threaten us.
Come, uncle, let us leave the brainsick king,
And henceforth parley with our naked swords.


E. Mor. Wiltshire hath men enough to save our heads. War. All Warwickshire will love 2 him for my sake.

1 I have kept the form found in ed. 1598, as a trisyllable is here required.

2 Dyce's correction "leave" seems unnecessary. Warwick is speaking ironically.

Lan. And northward Gaveston1 hath many friends.
Adieu, my lord; and either change your mind,
Or look to see the throne, where you should sit,
To float in blood; and at thy wanton head,
The glozing head of thy base minion thrown.


[Exeunt Nobles.

Edw. I cannot brook these haughty menaces;

Am I a king, and must be overruled?
Brother, display my ensigns in the field;
I'll bandy2 with the barons and the earls,

And either die or live with Gaveston.

Gav. I can no longer keep me from my lord.

[Comes forward. Edw. What, Gaveston! welcome.-Kiss not my handEmbrace me, Gaveston, as I do thee.


Why should'st thou kneel? know'st thou not who I am ?

Thy friend, thyself, another Gaveston !

Not Hylas was more mourned of3 Hercules,

Than thou hast been of me since thy exile.

Gav. And since I went from hence, no soul in hell

Hath felt more torment than poor Gaveston.

Edw. I know it.-Brother, welcome home my friend. Now let the treacherous Mortimers conspire,

And that high-minded Earl of Lancaster:

1 Dyce altered "Gaveston" to "Lancaster;" but the language is ironical.

2 Fight, contend. The word is borrowed from the game of tennis. 3 Ed. 1598, "mourned for Hercules." Eds. 1612, 1622, “mourned for of Hercules"-and so Dyce.

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