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And meteors fright the fixed stars of heaven;
The pale-fac'd moon looks bloody on the earth,
And lean-look'd prophets whisper fearful change;
Rich men look sad, and ruffians dance and leap,—
The one, in fear to lose what they enjoy,
The other, to enjoy by rage and war:
These signs forerun the death or fall of kings.-
Farewel; our countrymen are gone and fled,
As well assur'd, Richard their king is dead.
Sal. Ah, Richard! with the eyes of heavy mind,
I see thy glory, like a shooting star,
Fall to the base earth from the firmament!
Thy sun sets weeping in the lowly west,
Witnessing storms to come, woe, and unrest:
Thy friends are fled, to wait upon thy foes;
And crossly to thy good all fortune goes.




Bolingbroke's Camp at Bristol.

Enter BOLINGBROKE, YORK, NORTHUMBERLAND, PERCY, WILLOUGHBY, Ross: Officers behind with BUSHY and GREEN, prisoners.

Boling. Bring forth these men.—

Bushy, and Green, I will not vex your souls
(Since presently your souls must part your bodies)
With too much urging your pernicious lives,
For 'twere no charity: yet, to wash your blood
From off my hands, here, in the view of men,
I will unfold some causes of your death.
You have misled a prince, a royal king,
A happy gentleman in blood and lineaments,

ing sycknes, neyther devyll, wyll infest or hurt one in that place whereas a Bay tree is. The Romaynes calles it the plant of the good angell," &c. Steevens.

By you unhappied and disfigur'd clean."
You have, in manner, with your sinful hours,
Made a divorce betwixt his queen and him;
Broke the possession of a royal bed,1

And stain'd the beauty of a fair queen's cheeks
With tears drawn from her eyes by your foul wrongs.
Myself a prince, by fortune of my birth;
Near to the king in blood; and near in love,
Till you did make him misinterpret me,-
Have stoop'd my neck under your injuries,
And sigh'd my English breath in foreign clouds,
Eating the bitter bread of banishment:
Whilst you have fed upon my signories,
Dispark'd my parks,2 and fell'd my forest woods;
From my own windows torn my household coat,3
Raz'd out my impress, leaving me no sign,^-
Save men's opinions, and my living blood,-
To show the world I am a gentleman.

This, and much more, much more than twice all this,
Condemns you to the death:-See them deliver❜d over
To execution and the hand of death.


clean.] i. e. quite, completely. Reed.

So, in our author's 75th Sonnet:

"And by and by, clean starved for a look." Malone.

1 You have, in manner, with your sinful hours,

Made a divorce betwixt his queen and him;

Broke the possession of a royal bed,] There is, I believe, no authority for this. Isabel, the queen of the present play, was but nine years old. Richard's first queen, Anne, died in 1392, and the king was extremely fond of her. Malone.

2 Dispark'd my parks,] To dispark is to throw down the hedges of an enclosure. Dissepio. I meet with the word in Barret's Alvearie or Quadruple Dictionary, 1580. It also occurs in The Establishment of Prince Henry, 1610: "Forestes and Parkes of the Prince's disparked and in Lease," &c. Steevens.

3 From my own windows torn my household coat,] It was the practice when coloured glass was in use, of which there are still some remains in old seats and churches, to anneal the arms of the family in the windows of the house. Johnson.

4 Raz'd out my impress, &c.] The impress was a device or motto. Ferne, in his Blazon of Gentry, 1585, observes, “that the arms, &c. of traitors and rebels may be defaced and removed, wheresoever they are fixed, or set." Steevens.

Bushy. More welcome is the stroke of death to me, Than Bolingbroke to England.Lords, farewel.

Green. My comfort is,—that heaven will take our souls, And plague injustice with the pains of hell.

Boling. My lord Northumberland, see them despatch'd. [Exeunt NORTH. and Others, with Prisoners. Uncle, you say, the queen is at your house; For heaven's sake, fairly let her be entreated: Tell her, I send to her my kind commends; Take special care my greetings be deliver❜d. York. A gentleman of mine I have despatch'd With letters of your love to her at large.

Boling. Thanks, gentle uncle.-Come, lords, away; To fight with Glendower and his complices; Awhile to work, and, after, holiday.5

5 Thanks, gentle uncle.-Come, lords, away;
To fight with Glendower and his complices;


Awhile to work, and, after, holiday.] Though the intermediate line has taken possession of all the old copies, I have great suspicion of its being an interpolation; and have therefore ventured to throw it out. The first and third lines rhyme to each other; nor do I imagine this was casual, but intended by the poet. Were we to acknowledge the line genuine, it must argue the poet of forgetfulness and inattention to history. Bolingbroke is, as it were, but just arrived; he is now at Bristol, weak in his numbers; has had no meeting with a parliament; nor is so far assured of the succession, as to think of going to suppress insurrections before he is planted in the throne. Besides, we find the opposition of Glendower begins The First Part of King Henry IV, and Mortimer's defeat by that hardy Welshman is the tidings of the first scene of that play. Again, though Glendower, in the very first year of King Henry IV, began to be troublesome, put in for the supremacy of Wales, and imprisoned Mortimer; yet it was not till the succeeding year that the King employed any force against him. Theobald.

This emendation, which I think is just, has been followed by Sir T. Hanmer, but is neglected by Dr. Warburton. Johnson. It is evident from the preceding scene, that there was a force in Wales, which Bolingbroke might think it necessary to suppress; and why might not Shakspeare call it Glendower's? When we next see Bolingbroke, he is in Wales, and mentions his having received intelligence that the Welshmen are dispersed.


Mr. Heath observes, that Bolingbroke marched to Chester, probably with a view to attack the Welsh army headed by Lord


The Coast of Wales. A Castle in view.

Flourish: Drums and Trumpets.

Enter King RICHARD,

Bishop of Carlisle, AUMERLE, and Soldiers.

K. Rich. Barkloughly-castle call you this at hand? Aum. Yea, my lord: How brooks your grace the air, After late tossing on the breaking seas?7

K. Rich. Needs must I like it well; I weep for joy,
To stand upon my kingdom once again.
Dear earth, I do salute thee with my hand,
Though rebels wound thee with their horses' hoofs:
As a long parted mother with her child

Plays fondly with her tears, and smiles in meeting;
So, weeping, smiling, greet I thee, my earth,
And do thee favour with my royal hands.


Salisbury. He thinks, therefore, the line is genuine. See sc. iii, p. 82. Stowe expressly says, that "Owen Glendower served King Richard at Flint-Castle." Malone.

6 Here may be properly inserted the last scene of the second Act. Johnson.

7 After late tossing &c.] The old copies redundantly read: After your late tossing, &c. Steevens.

8 smiles in meeting;] It has been proposed to read-in weeping; and this change the repetition in the next line seems plainly to point out. Steevens.

As a long parted mother with her child

Plays fondly with her tears, and smiles in meeting ;]

σε Ως ειπων, αλόχοιο φιλής εν χερσιν έθηκε

σε Παιδ ̓ εον η δ' άρα μιν κηωδεί δεξαιο κολπῶ


Perhaps smiles is here used as a substantive. As a mother plays fondly with her child from whom she has been a long time parted, crying, and at the same time smiling, at meeting him.

It has been proposed to read-smiles in weeping; and I once thought the emendation very plausible. But I am now persuaded the text is right. If we read weeping, the long parted mother and her child do not meet, and there is no particular cause assigned for either her smiles or her tears. Malone.

From the actual smiles and tears of the long parted mother, &c. we may, I think, sufficiently infer that she had met with her child. Steevens.

Feed not thy sovereign's foe, my gentle earth,
Nor with thy sweets comfort his rav'nous sense:
But let thy spiders, that suck up thy venom,
And heavy-gaited toads, lie in their way;
Doing annoyance to the treacherous feet,
Which with usurping steps do trample thee.
Yield stinging nettles to mine enemies:


And when they from thy bosom pluck a flower,
Guard it, I pray thee, with a lurking adder;
Whose double tongue may with a mortal touch
Throw death upon thy sovereign's enemies.—
Mock not my senseless conjuration, lords;
This earth shall have a feeling,1 and these stones
Prove armed soldiers, ere her native king

Shall falter under foul rebellion's arms.

Bishop. Fear not, my lord; that Power, that made you king,

Hath power to keep you king, in spite of all.
The means that heaven yields must be embrac❜d,
And not neglected; else, if heaven would,
And we will not, heaven's offer we refuse; 3
The proffer'd means of succour and redress.

Aum. He means, my lord, that we are too remiss;

9 Guard it, I pray thee,] Guard it, signifies here, as in many other places, border it.


I think, that to guard, in this place, rather means, to watch or protect. M. Mason.

1 This earth shall have a feeling,] Perhaps Milton had not forgot this passage, when he wrote, in his Comus


dumb things shall be mov'd to sympathize,

"And the brute earth shall lend her nerves, and shake."


2 Fear not, my lord; &c.] Of this speech, the four last lines were restored from the first edition by Mr. Pope. They were, I suppose, omitted by the players only to shorten the scene, for, they are worthy of the author and suitable to the personage.


else, if heaven would,


And we will not, heaven's offer we refuse;] Thus the quarto 1597, except that the word if is wanting. The quarto 1608, and the late editions, read-And we would not. The word if was supplied by Mr. Pope. Both the metre and the sense show that it was accidentally omitted in the first copy. Malone.



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