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Smith. We took him setting of boys’ copies. Cade. Here’s a villain Smith. H’as a book in his pocket, with red letters in’t. - Cade. Nay, then he is a conjurer. Dick. Nay, he can make obligations, and write court-hand. - - . * Cade. I am sorry for't; the man is a proper man, ‘ on mine honor; unless I find him guilty, he shall ‘ not die.—Come hither, sirrah, I must examine thee. ‘What is thy name P • Clerk. Emmanuel. - • Dick. They use to write it on the top of letters." —"Twill go hard with you. 3. * Cade. Let me alone.—Dost thou use to write ‘thy name 2 or hast thou a mark to thyself, like an * honest, plain-dealing man f . Clerk. Sir, I thank God, I have been so well brought up, that I can write my name. • * All. He hath confessed: away with him; he’s * a villain, and a traitor. * Cade. Away with him, I say; hang him with his ‘pen and inkhorn about his neck. [Eveunt some, with the Clerk.
• Mich. Where's our general P * Cade. Here I am, thou particular fellow. * Mich. Fly, fly, fly! sir Humphrey Stafford and ‘ his brother are hard by, with the king's forces. * Cade. Stand, villain, stand, or I’ll fell thee down. * He shall be encountered with a man as good as him‘self. He is but a knight, is 'a P . * Mich. No. * Cade. To equal him, I will make myself a knight ‘ presently; rise up sir John Mortimer. Now have at ‘ him."
1 That is, on the top of letters missive and such like public acts. See Mabillon's Diplomata.
Enter SIR HUMPHREY STAFFORD, and WILLIAM his Brother, with drum and Forces.
* Staf. Rebellious hinds, the filth and scum of Kent, * Marked for the gallows, lay your weapons down; * Home to your cottages ; forsake this groom.— *The king is merciful, if you revolt. * W. Staf. But angry, wrathful, and inclined to blood, *If you go forward; therefore yield, or die. . Cade. As for these silken-coated slaves, I pass not;” It is to you, good people, that I speak, * O'er whom, in time to come, I hope to reign; * For I am rightful heir unto the crown. Staf Villain, thy father was a plasterer; ‘And thou thyself a shearman, art thou not? Cade. And Adam was a gardener. * W. Staf. And what of that? Cade. Marry, this;–Edmund Mortimer, earl of March, Married the duke of Clarence' daughter: did he not? ‘Staf Ay, sir. f Cade. By her, he had two children at one birth. W. Staf. That's false. * Cade. Ay, there's the question; but, I say, 'tis true. * The elder of them, being put to nurse, “Was by a beggar-woman stolen away; “And, ignorant of his birth and parentage, * Became a bricklayer when he came to age. * His son am I; deny it, if you can.
l After this speech, in the old play, are the following words:– “— Is there any more of them that be knights? Tom. Yea, his brother. - - Cade. Then kneel down, Dick Butcher; rise up sir Dick Butcher Sound up the drum.” 2 I care not, I pay them no regard.
“Transform me to what shape you can, -
Dick. Nay, 'tis too true ; therefore he shall be king. Smith. Sir, he made a chimney in my father’s house, and the bricks are alive at this day to testify it; therefore, deny it not. * Staf. And will you credit this base drudge's words, * That speaks he knows not what? * All. Ay, marry, will we; therefore get ye gone. W. Staf Jack Cade, the duke of York hath taught you this. * Cade. He lies, for I invented it myself. [Aside.] —Go to, sirrah. Tell the king from me, that—for his father’s sake, Henry the Fifth, in whose time boys went to span counter for French crowns,—I am content he shall reign; but I’ll be protector over him. * Dick. And, furthermore, we’ll have the lord Say's ‘ head, for selling the dukedom of Maine. . * Cade. And good reason; for thereby is England * maimed, and fain to go with a staff, but that my ‘puissance holds it up. Fellow kings, I tell you, that ‘ that lord Say hath gelded the commonwealth, and * made it a eunuch; and more than that, he can ‘speak French, and therefore he is a traitor. ‘Staf. O gross and miserable ignorance * Cade. Nay, answer, if you can. The Frenchmen ‘ are our enemies: go to, then, I ask but this; Can he ‘ that speaks with the tongue of an enemy, be a good ‘ counseller, or no f * All. No, no ; and therefore we’ll have his head. * W. Staf. Well, seeing gentle words will not prevail, * Assail them with the army of the king. * Staf. Herald, away; and, throughout every town, ‘ Proclaim them traitors that are up with Cade; * That those which fly before the battle ends, * May, even in their wives’ and children's sight, ‘Be hanged up for example at their doors.— ‘And you, that be the king's friends, follow me [Eveunt the two STAFFoRDs and Forces. * Cade. And you, that love the commons, follow Isle.—
* Now show yourselves men; 'tis for liberty. *We will not leave one lord, one gentleman. * Spare none; but such as go in clouted shoon; * For they are thrifty, honest men, and such * As would 4. that they dare not) take our parts. * Dick. They are all in order, and march toward us. * Cade. But then are we in order, when we are * most out of order. Come, march forward. [Eveunt.
SCENE III. Another Part of Blackheath.
Alarums. The two parties enter and fight, and both the STAFFORDs are slain.
* Cade. Where’s Dick, the butcher of Ashford?
* Dick. Here, sir. • .
* Cade. They fell before thee like sheep and oxen, ‘ and thou behavedst thyself as if thou hadst been in ‘thine own slaughter-house; therefore thus will I re‘ ward thee,_The Lent shall be as long again as it is ; ‘ and thou shalt have a license to kill for a hundred “ lacking one, a week."
* Dick. I desire no more.
* Cade. And, to speak truth, thou deservest no less. * This monument of the victory will I bear; * and the * bodies shall be dragged at my horse's heels, till I do * come to London, where we will have the mayor’s * sword borne before us. -
* Dick. If we mean to thrive and do good, break * open the jails, and let out the prisoners.
1 The last two words, a week, were added by Malone from the old play It is necessary to render the passage intelligible. In the reign of Elizabeth, butchers who had interest at court, frequently obtained a dispensation to kill a certain number of beasts a week during Lent; of which indulgence, the wants of invalids who could not subsist without animal food, was made the pretence. .
2 Here Cade must be supposed to take off Stafford's armor. So Holinshed:—“Jack Cade, upon his victory against the Staffords, apparelled himself in sir Humphrey's brigandine, set full of gilt nails, and so in glory returned again toward London.”
* Cade. Fear not that, I warrant thee. Come, let's * march towards London. [Eaceunt.
SCENE IV. London. A Room in the Palace.
Enter KING HENRY, reading a supplication; the DUKE of BUCKINGHAM, and Lord SAY with him ; at a dis
tance, QUEEN MARGARET, mourning over SUFFOLK's head.
* Q. Mar. Oft have I heard—that grief softens the mind, . *And makes it fearful and degenerate; * Think therefore on revenge, and cease to weep. *But who can cease to weep, and look on this f * Here may his head lie on my throbbing breast; *But where's the body that I should embrace P * Buck. What answer makes your grace to the ‘ rebels’ supplication ? * K. Hen. I’ll send some holy bishop' to entreat; ‘For God forbid, so many simple souls “Should perish by the sword ' And I myself, ‘ Rather than bloody war shall cut them short, ‘Will parley with Jack Cade their general.— “But stay, I’ll read it over once again. * Q. Mar. Ah, barbarous villains ! hath this lovely face - * Ruled, like a wandering planet, over me; * And could it not enforce them to relent, * That were unworthy to behold the same P * K. Hen. Lord Say, Jack Cade hath sworn to have thy head. “Say. Ay, but I hope your highness shall have his.
1 Shakspeare has here fallen into another inconsistency, by sometimes following Holinshed instead of the old play. He afterwards forgets this holy bishop; and in scene the eighth we find only Buckingham and Clifford were sent, conformably to the old play. Holinshed mentions that the archbishop of Canterbury and the duke of Buckingham were sent.