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Wast born to bear? I was not made a horse;
Enter Keeper, with a Dish.
Keep. Fellow, give place; here is no longer stay. [To the Groom. K. Rich. If thou love me, 'tis time thou wert away. Groom. What my tongue dares not, that my heart shall say.
[Exit. Keep. My lord, will't please you to fall to?
K. Rich. Taste of it first, as thou art wont to do. Keep. My lord, I dare not; Sir Pierce of Exton, who Lately came from the king, commands the contrary. K. Rich. The devil take Henry of Lancaster, and
Patience is stale, and I am weary of it.
Keep. Help, help, help!
[Beats the Keeper.
Enter EXTON, and Servants, armed.
K. Rich. How now? what means death in this rude assault?
Villain, thine own hand yields thy death's instrument. [Snatching a weapon and killing one.
Go thou, and fill another room in hell.
[He kills another, and then ExTON strikes
That hand shall burn in never quenching fire,
14 Jauncing is hard riding, from the old French word jancer, which Cotgrave explains "To stir a horse in the stable till he sweat withall; or (as our) to jaunt."
15 These stage directions are not in the old copies.
Whilst my gross flesh sinks downward, here to die.
[Dies 16 Exton. As full of valour, as of royal blood : Both have I spilt! O, 'would the deed were good! For now the devil, that told me—I did well, Says, that this deed is chronicled in hell. This dead king to the living king I'll bear ;Take hence the rest, and give them burial here. [Exeunt.
SCENE VI. Windsor. A Room in the Castle.
Flourish. Enter BOLINGBROKE, and YORK, with Lords and Attendants.
Boling. Kind uncle York, the latest news we hear Is that the rebels have consum'd with fire
Our town of Cicester in Glostershire;
But whether they be ta'en, or slain, we hear not.
Welcome, my lord: What is the news?
North. First, to thy sacred state wish I all happiness.
16 The representation here given of the king's death is perfectly agreeable to Hall and Holinshed (who copied from Fabian, with whom the story of Exton is thought to have its origin). But it is said that he refused food for several days, and died of abstinence and a broken heart. See Walsingham, Otterburne, the Monk of Evesham, the Continuator of the History of Croyland, and the Godstow Chronicle. His body, after being submitted to public inspection in the church of Pomfret, was brought to London, and exposed in Cheapside for two hours, "his heade on a black cushion, and his visage open," when it was viewed, says Froissart, by twenty thousand persons, and finally in St. Paul's Cathedral. Stowe seems to have had before him a manuscript history of the latter part of King Richard's life, written by a person who was with him in Wales. He says "he was imprisoned in Pomfrait Castle, where xv dayes and nightes they vexed him with continual hunger, thirst, and cold, and finally bereft him of his life with such a kind of death as never before that time was knowen in England."
The next news is,-I have to London sent
The heads of Salisbury, Spencer, Blunt, and Kent1:
[Presenting a paper. Boling. We thank thee, gentle Percy, for thy pains; And to thy worth will add right worthy gains.
Fitz. My lord, I have from Oxford sent to London
Boling. Thy pains, Fitzwater, shall not be forgot;
Enter PERCY, with the Bishop of Carlisle. Percy. The grand conspirator, abbot of Westminster 2,
With clog of conscience, and sour melancholy,
Thy kingly doom, and sentence of his pride.
So the folio. The quarto reads of Oxford, Salisbury, Blunt, and Kent. The folio is right according to the histories.
2 This Abbot of Westminster was William de Colchester. The relation, which is taken from Holinshed, is untrue, as he survived the king many years; and though called "the grand conspirator," it is very doubtful whether he had any concern in the conspiracy; at least nothing was proved against him.
3 The Bishop of Carlisle was committed to the Tower, but on the intercession of his friends obtained leave to change his prison for Westminster Abbey. In order to deprive him of his see, the Pope, at the king's instance, translated him to a bishoprick in partibus infidelium; and the only preferment he could ever after obtain was a rectory in Gloucestershire.
More than thou hast, and with it 'joy thy life;
Enter EXTON, with Attendants bearing a Coffin.
A deed of slander1, with thy fatal hand,
Exton. From your own mouth, my lord, did I this deed.
Boling. They love not poison that do poison need,
That blood should sprinkle me, to make me grow :
• Slander is the correct reading of the first quarto, all the other copies read erroneously slaughter.
5 i. e. Immediately.
END OF VOL. IV.
CHISWICK PRESS-PRINTED BY WHITTINGHAM AND WILKINS, TOOKS COURT, CHANCERY LANE.