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* 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 12.
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 his 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,
To
pry

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 :
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 pulld fair England down.

[Exit.

12 Meleager; whose life was to continue only so long as a certain firebrand should last. His mother Althea having thrown it into the fire, le expired in torment.

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SCENE II. The same.

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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 ?

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,

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, Was broke in twain, by whom, I have forgot,

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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 So

merset, • 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 are

crown'd; • 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 cho

lerick • With Eleanor, for telling but her dream? · Next time, I'll keep my dreams unto myself, · And not be check’d. Glo. Nay, be not angry, I am pleas'd again.

1 Ill nurtur'd is ill educated.

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Enter a Messenger. • Mess. My lord protector, 'tis his highness' plea

sure, • You do prepare to ride unto Saint Albans,

Whereas the king and queen do mean to hawk. Glo. I go-Come; Nell, thou wilt ride with us? Duch. Yes, good my lord, I'll follow presently.

[Exeunt Gloster and Messenger. · Follow I must, I cannot go before, * While Gloster bears this base and humble mind. * Were I a man, a duke, and next of blood, * I would remove these tedious stumbling-blocks, * And smooth my way upon their headless necks: * And, being a woman, I will not be slack * To play my part in fortune's pageant. • Where are you there? Sir John3 ! nay, fear not,

man,

• We are alone; here's none but thee, and I.

Enter HUME. Hume. Jesu preserve your royal majesty! Duch. What say'st thou, majesty! I am but

grace. Hume. But, by the grace of God, and Hume's

advice, - Your grace's title shall be multiplied.

2 Whereas for where; a common substitution in old language, as where is often used for whereas.

At Agincourt that fought,
Whereas rebellious France upon her knees was brought.'

Drayton's Polyolbion, xvi.
• I dream'd the nymph that o'er my fancy reigns
Came to a part whereas I paus'd alone.'

Lord Sterline's Fifty-first Sonnet, 1604. 3 A title frequently bestowed on the clergy. See the first note on the Merry Wives of Windsor.

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Duch. What say’st thou, man? hast thou as yet

conferr'd With Margery Jourdain, the cunning witch;

And Roger Bolingbroke, the conjurer ? • And will they undertake to do me good ? Hume. This they have promised, -to show your

highness ! A spirit rais'd from depth of under ground, ? That shall make answer to such questions, • As by your grace shall be propounded him.

Duch. It is enough; I'll think upon the questions: - When from Saint Albans we do make return, • We'll see these things effected to the full.

Here, Hume, take this reward; make merry, man, • With thy confederates in this weighty cause.

[Exit Duchess. * Hume. Hume must make merry with the duch

ess' gold; Marry, and shall. But how now, Sir John Hume? • Seal up your lips, and give no words but-mum!

The business asketh silent secrecy. * Dame Eleanor gives gold, to bring the witch: * Gold cannot come amiss, were she a devil. • Yet have I gold, flies from another coast: • I dare not say, from the rich cardinal, • And from the great and new-made duke of Suffolk;

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• It appears from Rymer's Fædera, vol. x. p. 505, that in the tenth year of Henry VI. Margery Jourdemayn, John Virley Clerk, and Friar John Ashwell, were, on the ninth of May, brought from Windsor by the constable of the castle, to which they had been committed for sorcery, before the council at Westminster, and afterwards committed to the custody of the Lord Chancellor. It was ordered that whenever the said Virley and Ashwell should find security for their good behaviour they should be set at liberty, and in like manner that Jourdemayn should be discharged on her husband's finding security. This woman was afterwards burned in Smithfield, as stated in the play, and also in the Chronicles.

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