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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.
Car. So, there goes our protector in a rage.
'Tis known to you he is mine enemy;
Nay more, an enemy
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.
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. Or thou, or I, Somerset, will be protector,
Despite duke Humphrey, or the cardinal.
Exeunt BUCKINGHAM and SOMERSET.
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 common-weal.
Warwick, my son, the comfort of my age,
Thy deeds, thy plainness, and thy house-keeping,
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 of the land'.
War. So God help Warwick, as he loves the land,
And common profit of his country.
York. And so says York,--for he hath greatest cause.
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,
. While they do tend the profit of the land.] In the corr. fo. 1632, " the ” is changed to to,
" While they do tend to profit of the land :" it may be right, meaning, of course, while they tend to the advantage of the land; but as the words in the old editions may be said to bear the same sense, we do not see the necessity of the alteration.
· Warwick did win,) For some unexplained, and not obvious reason, the old annotator on the folio, 1632, alters the places of "Warwick" and " did," reading "did Warwick win.”
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 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 hapless hands',
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 Althea 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 humours fit 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 :
- and wrings his HAPLESS hands,] We make no alteration here, because it is not required; but it is fit to note that the corr. fo. 1632 has helpless for " hapless." There is no such simile in the old “Contention ;" and were the two epithets presented to us, without information as to which had been printed in the folio, 1623, we should certainly prefer helpless, in reference to the forlorn condition of the plundered merchant.
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.
The Same. A Room in the Duke of GLOSTER's House.
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 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,
* To GRAPPLE with the house of Lancaster ;] It is graffle, misheard for “ grapple," in the edit. of 1594 of the old “ Contention,” but it was subsequently amended to “grapple.” The speech in the earlier copies in 4to. begins after the allusion to Meleager, and continues to the end.
Was broke in twain : by whom, I have forgot,
But, as I think, it was by the cardinal;
And on the pieces of the broken wand
Were plac'd the heads of Edmond duke of Somerset,
And William de la Poole, 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 were crown'do;
Where 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
what it doth bode God knows.] In the old play of “The First Part of the Contention," 1594, this speech is given very differently: viz.
“ This night, when I was laid in bed, I dream'd that
This my staff, mine office-badge in court,
Was broke in two, and on the ends were plac'd
The heads of the Cardinal of Winchester,
And William de la Poole, first duke of Suffolk." This could not be as it originally must have stood, and in the 4to. of the same play, printed about 1619, the dream was thus represented :
“ This night, when I was laid in bed, I dream'd
That this my staffe, mine office-badge in court,
Was broke in twaine, by whom I cannot guess,
But, as I think, by the cardinal. What it bodes
God knows; and on the ends were plac'd
The heads of Edmund, duke of Somerset,
And William de la Poole, first duke of Suffolk.”
Our text is as it is given in the folio, 1623,—the third form it took.
6 – where kings and queens WERE crown'd;] Most modern editors have substituted are for “ were," against all authority.