Henry VI, Pt. 2
Act IV, Scene 10
Kent. Iden’s Garden.
- Enter Cade.
Jack Cade1 - 14
- Fie on ambitions! Fie on myself, that have a sword, and yet
- am ready to famish! These five days have I hid me in these
- woods and durst not peep out, for all the country is laid
- for me; but now am I so hungry that, if I might have a lease
- of my life for a thousand years, I could stay no longer.
- Wherefore, on a brick wall have I climb’d into this garden,
- to see if I can eat grass, or pick a sallet another while,
- which is not amiss to cool a man’s stomach this hot weather.
- And I think this word ’sallet’ was born to do me good; for
- many a time, but for a sallet, my brain-pan had been cleft
- with a brown bill; and many a time, when I have been dry and
- bravely marching, it hath serv’d me instead of a quart pot
- to drink in; and now the word ‘sallet’ must serve me to feed
- He lies down picking of herbs and eating them.
- Enter Iden followed at a distance by his Servants.
Alexander Iden15 - 22
- Lord, who would live turmoiled in the court
- And may enjoy such quiet walks as these?
- This small inheritance my father left me
- Contenteth me, and worth a monarchy.
- I seek not to wax great by others’ waning,
- Or gather wealth, I care not with what envy.
- Sufficeth that I have maintains my state
- And sends the poor well pleased from my gate.
Jack Cade23 - 28
- Here’s the lord of the soil come to seize me for a stray,
- for entering his fee-simple without leave.—Ah, villain, thou
- wilt betray me, and get a thousand crowns of the King by
- carrying my head to him, but I’ll make thee eat iron like an
- ostrich, and swallow my sword like a great pin, ere thou and
- I part.
Alexander Iden29 - 34
- Why, rude companion, whatsoe’er thou be,
- I know thee not, why then should I betray thee?
- Is’t not enough to break into my garden,
- And like a thief to come to rob my grounds,
- Climbing my walls in spite of me the owner,
- But thou wilt brave me with these saucy terms?
Jack Cade35 - 39
- Brave thee? Ay, by the best blood that ever was broach’d,
- and beard thee too. Look on me well. I have eat no meat
- these five days, yet come thou and thy five men, and if I do
- not leave you all as dead as a doornail, I pray God I may
- never eat grass more.
Alexander Iden40 - 52
- Nay, it shall ne’er be said, while England stands,
- That Alexander Iden, an esquire of Kent,
- Took odds to combat a poor famish’d man.
- Oppose thy steadfast-gazing eyes to mine,
- See if thou canst outface me with thy looks.
- Set limb to limb, and thou art far the lesser;
- Thy hand is but a finger to my fist,
- Thy leg a stick compared with this truncheon;
- My foot shall fight with all the strength thou hast,
- And if mine arm be heaved in the air,
- Thy grave is digg’d already in the earth.
- As for words, whose greatness answers words,
- Let this my sword report what speech forbears.
Jack Cade53 - 61
- By my valor, the most complete champion that ever I heard!
- Steel, if thou turn the edge, or cut not out the burly-bon’d
- clown in chines of beef ere thou sleep in thy sheath, I
- beseech God on my knees thou mayst be turn’d to hobnails.
- Here they fight and Cade falls down.
- O, I am slain! Famine and no other hath slain me. Let ten
- thousand devils come against me, and give me but the ten
- meals I have lost, and I’d defy them all. Wither, garden,
- and be henceforth a burying-place to all that do dwell in
- this house, because the unconquer’d soul of Cade is fled.
Alexander Iden62 - 67
- Is’t Cade that I have slain, that monstrous traitor?
- Sword, I will hallow thee for this thy deed,
- And hang thee o’er my tomb when I am dead.
- Ne’er shall this blood be wiped from thy point,
- But thou shalt wear it as a herald’s coat,
- To emblaze the honor that thy master got.
Jack Cade68 - 71
- Iden, farewell, and be proud of thy victory. Tell Kent from
- me, she hath lost her best man, and exhort all the world to
- be cowards; for I, that never fear’d any, am vanquish’d by
- famine, not by valor.
Alexander Iden72 - 80
- How much thou wrong’st me, heaven be my judge.
- Die, damned wretch, the curse of her that bare thee;
- And as I thrust thy body in with my sword,
- So wish I, I might thrust thy soul to hell.
- Hence will I drag thee headlong by the heels
- Unto a dunghill, which shall be thy grave,
- And there cut off thy most ungracious head,
- Which I will bear in triumph to the King,
- Leaving thy trunk for crows to feed upon.
- Exit dragging out the body, with his Servants.