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D. of York. Oh, my dear lord! So I must callyou now. P. Ed. Ay, brother, to our grief, as it is yours! Too soon he dy'd, who might have better worn That title, which, in me, will lose its majesty. Glost. How fares our cousin, noble Lord of York D. of York. Thank you kindly, dear uncle—Oh, my lord, You said that idle weeds were fast in growth; The king, my brother, has outgrown me, far. Glost. He has, my lord. D. of York. And, therefore, is he idle Glost. Oh, pretty cousin, I must not say so. D. of York. Nay, uncle, I don't believe the saying's true, For, if it were, you'd be an idle weed. Glost. How so, cousin D. of York. Because, I have heard folks say, you grew so fast, Your teeth would gnaw a crust at two hours old : Now, 'twas two years ere I could get a tooth. Glost. Indeed . I find, the brat is taught this lesSO11. [Aside. Who told thee this, my pretty, merry cousin D. of York. Why, your nurse, uncle. Glost. My nurse, child ! she was dead 'fore thou wert born. D. of York. If 'twas not she, I can't tell who told me. Glost. So subtle too! 'tis pity thou art short liv'd [Aside. P. Ed. My brother, uncle, will be cross in talk. Glost. Oh, fear not, my lord; we shall never quar
rel. P. Ed. I hope your grace knows how to bear with him. D. of York. You mean to bear me, not to bear with me;
Uncle, my brother mocks both you and me:
Because that I am little, like an ape,
He thinks that you should bear me on your shoulders.
P. Ed. Fie, brother, I have no such meaning!
Glost. My lord, wilt please you, pass along?
Myself and my good cousin of Buckingham
Will to your mother, to entreat of her
To meet, and bid you welcome, at the Tower.
D. of York. What I will you go to the Tower, my
dear lord *
P. Ed. My Lord Protector will have it so.
D. of York. I shan't sleep in quiet, at the Tower.
Glost. I'll warrant you; King Henry lay there,
And he sleeps in quiet. [Aside.
P. Ed. What should you fear, brother ?
D. of York. My uncle, Clarence'ghost, my lord;
My grandmother told me he was kill'd there.
P. Ed. I fear no uncles dead.
Glost. Nor any, sir, that live, I hope?
P. Ed. I hope so too; but come, my lords,
To the Tower, since it must be so.
[Ereunt all but GLostER and BuckINGHAM.
Buck. Think you, my lord, this little, prating, York
Was not instructed by his subtle mother,
To taunt and scorn you thus opprobriously
Glost. No doubt—no doubt; oh, 'tis a shrewd
Stubborn, bold, quick, forward, and capable !
He is all the mother's, from the top to the toe:
But let them rest.—Now what says Catesby P
Buck. My lord, 'tis much as I suspected, and
He's here himself to inform you.
Glost. So, Catesby, hast thou been tampering? What news? Catesby. My lord, according to the instruction given me,
With words, at distance dropp'd, I sounded Hastings,
Piercing how far he did affect your purpose;
To which, indeed, I found him cold, unwilling;
The sum is this—he seem'd awhile to understand me
At length, from plainer speaking, urg'd to answer,
He said, in heat, rather than wrong the head
To whom the crown was due, he'd lose his own.
Glost. Indeed! his own then answer for that say-
He shall É taken care of; meanwhile, Catesby,
Be thou near me.—Cousin of Buckingham,
Let's lose no time; the mayor and citizens
Are now at busy meeting, in Guild Hall.
Thither I'd have you haste immediately,
And at your meetest 'vantage of the time,
Improve those hints I gave you late to speak of :
But, above all, infer the bastardy
Of Edward's children.
Buck. Doubt not, my lord, I'll play the orator,
As if myself might wear the golden fee,
For which I plead.
Glost. If you thrive well, bring them to see me
Where you shall find me seriously employ'd,
With the most learned fathers of the church.
Buck. I fly, my lord, to serve you.
Glost. To serve thyself, my cousin;
For look, when I am king, claim thou of me
The earldom of Hereford, and all those moveables
Whereof the king, my brother, stood possess'd.
Buck. I shall remember, that your grace was boun-
tiful. Glost. Cousin, I have said it. Buck. I am gone, my lord. [Erit. Glost. So, I've secur'd my cousin here. These moveables
Will never let his brains rest, till I'm king.
Catesby, go you with speed to Doctor Shaw,
And thence, to Friar Beuker—bid them both
Attend me here, within an hour at farthest :
- [Exit CATESBY.
Meanwhile, my private orders shall be given,
To lock out all admittance to the princes.
Now, by St. Paul, the work goes bravely on 1
How many frightful stops would conscience make
In some soft heads, to undertake like me !
Come, this conscience is a convenient scarecrow;
It guards the fruit, which priests and wise men taste,
Who never set it up to fright themselves;
They know ’tis rags, and gather in the face on't ;
While half-starv'd, shallow daws, through fear, are
honest. Why were laws made, but, that we're rogues by na
Conscience 'tis our coin—we live by parting with it;
And he thrives best, that has the most to spare.
The protesting lover buys hope with it,
And the deluded virgin, short-lived pleasure;
Old greybeards cram their avarice with it;
Your lank-jaw'd, hungry judge, will dine upon't,
And hang the guiltless, rather than eat his mutton
The crown'd head quits it for despotic sway;
The stubborn people, for unaw’d rebellion.
There's not a slave, but has his share of villain:
Why, then, shall after ages think my deeds
Inhuman, since my worst are but ambition
Ev’n all mankind, to some lov’d ills incline:
Great men chuse greater sins—ambition's mine. [Erit.
LADY ANNE discovered, sitting on a Couch.
Lady A. When—when shall I have rest ? Was marriage made
To be the scourge of our offences here
Oh, no! 'twas meant a blessing to the virtuous;
It once was so to me, though now my curse.
The fruit of Edward's love was sweet and pleasing;
But, oh! untimely cropp'd by cruel Gloster;
Let me have music, to compose my thoughts.
[Soft Music. It will not be; naught but the grave can close my eyes. But see,
He comes—the rude disturber of my pillow.
Glost. Ha! still in tears? let them flow on; theyr'e signs Of a substantial grief—Why don't she die? She must; my interest will not let her live. The fair Elizabeth hath caught my eye; My heart's vacant, and she shall fill her place. They say, that women have but tender hearts: 'Tis a mistake, I doubt—I've found them tough; They'll bend, indeed, but he must strain, that cracks them. All I can hope 's to throw her into sickness, That I may send her a physician's help.