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The Porter before the Gate; Enter Lord BARDOLPH. Bard. Who keeps the gate here, ho ?—Where is the
Bard. Tell thou the earl,
Port. His lordship is walk'd forth into the orchard; Please it your honour, knock but at the gate, And he himself will answer.
Enter NORTHUMBERLAND. Bard. Here comes the earl.
North. What news, lord Bardolph ? every minute now
Bard. Noble earl,
North. Good, an heaven will!
Bard. As good as heart can wish :
North. How is this deriv'd ?
thence; A gentleman well bred, and of good name, That freely render'd me these news for true.
North. Here comes my servant, Travers, whom I sent, On Tuesday last to listen after news.
Bard. My lord, I over-rode him on the way;
North. Ha !- Again.
Bard. My lord, I'll tell you what;
vers, Give then such instances of loss ?
Bard. Who, he?
Mor. I ran from Shrewsbury, my noble lord;
North. How doth my son, and brother? Thou tremblest; and the whiteness in thy cheek Is apter than thy tongue to tell thy errand. Even such a man, so faint, so spiritless, So dull, so dead in look, so woe-begone, Drew Priam's curtain in the dead of night, And would have told him, half his Troy was burn’d: But Priam found the fire, ere he his tongue, And I my Percy's death, ere thou report'st it. This thou would'st say,—Your son did thus, and thus ; Your brother, thus; so fought the noble Douglas; Stopping my greedy ear with their bold deeds: But in the end, to stop mine ear indeed, Thou hast a sigh to blow away this praise, Ending with--brother, son, and all are dead.
Mor. Douglas is living, and your brother, yet: But, for my lord your son,
North. Why, he is dead,
See, what a ready tongue suspicion hath!
Mor. You are too great to be by me gainsaid:
North. Yet, for all this, say not that Percy's dead. I see a strange confession in thine eye: Thou shak'st thy head; and hold'st it fear, or sin, To speak a truth. If he be slain, say so: The tongue offends not, that reports his death : And he doth sin, that doth belie the dead; Not he, which says the dead is not alive. Yet the first bringer of unwelcome news Hath but a losing office; and his tongue Sounds ever after as a sullen bell, Remember'd knolling a departing friend.
Bard. I cannot think, my lord, your son is dead.
Mor. I am sorry, I should force you to believe That, which I would to heaven I had not seen : But these mine eyes saw him in bloody state, Rend'ring faint quittance, wearied and outbreath’d, To Harry Monmouth; whose swift wrath beat down The never-daunted Percy to the earth, From whence with life he never more sprung up. In few, his death (whose spirit lent a fire Even to the dullest peasant in his camp), Being bruited once, took fire and heat away From the best temper'd courage in his troops :