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However faulty, yet should find respect
For what they have been : 'tis a cruelty,
To load a falling man.

Good master secretary,
I cry your honour mercy; you may, worst
Of all this table, say so.

Why, my lord ?
Gar. Do not I know you for a favourer
Of this new sect? ye are not sound.

Not sound?
Gar. Not sound, I say.

'Would you were half so honest! Men's

prayers then would seek you, not their fears.
Gar. I shall remember this bold language.

Remember your bold life too.

This is too much ;
Forbear, for shame, my lords.

I have done.

And I.
Chan. Then thus for you, my lord, It stands agreed,
I take it, by all voices, that forthwith
You be convey'd to the Tower a prisoner;
There to remain, till the king's further pleasure
Be known unto us : Are you all agreed, lords ?

All. We are.

Is there no other way of mercy,
But I must needs to the Tower, my lords?

What other Would

you expect? You are strangely troublesome : Let some o'the guard be ready there.

Enter Guard.

For me?

Must I go like a traitor thither?

And see him safe i'the Tower.

Receive him,



Stay, good my lords,
I have a little yet to say. Look there, my lords ;
By virtue of that ring, I take my cause
Out of the gripes of cruel men, and give it
To a most noble judge, the king my master.

Cham. This is the king's ring.

'Tis no counterfeit. Suf. 'Tis the right ring, by heaven: I told ye all, When we first put this dangerous stone a rolling, "Twould fall upon ourselves. Nor.

Do you think, my lords, The king will suffer but the little finger Of this man to be vex'd ? Cham.

'Tis now too certain :
How much more is his life in value with him ?
'Would I were fairly out on't.

My mind gave me,
In seeking tales, and informations,
Against this man, (whose honesty the devil
And his disciples only envy at,)
Ye blew the fire that burns ye: Now have at ye.

Enter King, frowning on them; takes his seat.
Gar. Dread sovereign, how much are we bound to

In daily thanks, that gave us such a prince;
Not only good and wise, but most religious :
One that, in all obedience, makes the church

6 This is the king's ring.) It seems to have been a custom, begun probably in the dark ages, before literature was generally diffused, and before the regal power experienced the restraints of law, for every monarch to have a ring, the temporary possession of which invested the holder with the same authority as the owner himself could exercise. The production of it was sufficient to suspend the execution of the law; it procured indemnity for offences committed, and imposed acquiescence and submission on whatever was done under its authority. Instances abound in the history of almost every nation.

The chief aim of his honour; and, to strengthen
That holy duty, out of dear respect,
His royal self in judgment comes to hear
That cause betwixt her and this great offender.
K. Hen. You were ever good at sudden commenda-

Bishop of Winchester. But know, I come not
To hear such flattery now, and in my presence;
They are too thin and base to hide offences.
To me you cannot reach ; you play the spaniel,
And think with wagging of your tongue to win me;
But, whatsoe'er thou tak'st me for, I am sure,
Thou hast a cruel nature, and a bloody.
Good man, [to CRANMER,] sit down. Now let me see

the proudest
He, that dares most, but wag his finger at thee:
By all that's holy, he had better starve,
Than but once think his place becomes thee not.?

Sur. May it please your grace, —
K. Hen.

No, sir, it does not please me.
I had thought, I had had men of some understanding
And wisdom, of my council ; but I find none.
Was it discretion, lords, to let this man,
This good man, (few of you deserve that title,)
This honest man, wait like a lousy footboy
At chamber door? and one as great as you are?
Why, what a shame was this? Did my commission
Bid ye so far forget yourselves ? I gave ye
Power as he was a counsellor to try him,
Not as a groom; There's some of ye, I

see, More out

of malice than integrity, Would try him to the utmost, had ye mean ; Which ye shall never have, while I live.

7 Than but once think his place becomes thee not.] Who dares to suppose that the place or situation in which he is, is not suitable to thee also? who supposes that thou art not as fit for the office of a privy counsellor as he is ?


Thus far, My most dread sovereign, may it like your grace To let my tongue excuse all. What was purpos’d Concerning his imprisonment, was rather (If there be faith in men,) meant for his trial, And fair purgation to the world, than malice; I am sure, in me.

K. Hen. Well, well, my lords, respect him ;
Take him, and use him well, he's worthy of it.
I will say thus much for him, If a prince
May be beholden to a subject, I
Am, for his love and service, so to him.
Make me no more ado, but all embrace him;
Be friends, for shame, my lords. - · My lord of Can-

I have a suit which you must not deny me;
That is, a fair young maid that yet wants baptism,
You must be godfather ®, and answer for her.

Cran. The greatest monarch now alive may glory
In such an honour; How may I deserve it,
That am a poor and humble subject to you?
K. Hen. Come, come, my lord, you'd spare your

spoons"; you shall have Two noble partners with you; the old duchess of Nor



8 You must be godfather,] Our prelates formerly were often employed on the like occasions. Cranmer was godfather to Edward VI.; archbishop Warham to Henry's eldest son by queen Katharine; and the bishop of Winchester to Henry himself.

- you'd spare your spoons ;] It was the custom, long before the time of Shakspeare, for the sponsors at christenings to offer gilt spoons as a present to the child. These spoons were called apostle spoons, because the figures of the apostles were carved on the tops of the handles. Such as were at once opulent and generous, gave the whole twelve; those who were either more moderately rich or liberal, escaped at the expence of the four evangelists; or even sometimes contented themselves with presenting one spoon only, which exhibited the figure of any saint, in honour of whom the child receiv ed its name.

And lady marquiss Dorset: Will these please you?
Once more, my lord of Winchester, I charge you,
Embrace, and love this man.

With a true heart,
And brother-love, I do it.

And let heaven
Witness, how dear I hold this confirmation.
K. Hen. Good man, those joyful tears show thy true

heart. The common voice, I see, is verified Of thee, which says thus, Do my lord of Canterbury A shrewd turn, and he is your friend for ever. Come, lords, we trifle time away; I long To have this young one made a christian. As I have made ye one, lords, one remain; So I grow stronger, you more honour gain. [Excunt.


The Palace Yard,

Noise and Tumult within. Enter Porter and his Man.

Port. You'll leave your noise anon, ye rascals : Do you take the court for Paris-garden?' ye rude slaves, leave your gaping. ?

[Within.] Good master porter, I belong to the larder.

Port. Belong to the gallows, and be hanged, you rogue: Is this a place to roar in ?- Fetch me a dozen crab-tree staves, and strong ones; these are but switches to them. — I'll scratch your heads: You must be seeing

- Paris-garden?] This celebrated bear-garden on the bankside was so called from Robert de Paris, who had a house and garden there in the time of king Richard II.

- gaping.) i. e. shouting or roaring; a sense which this word has now almost lost.


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