Henry VI, Pt. 2
Act IV, Scene 7
- Alarums. Matthew Goffe is slain, and all the rest.
- Then enter Jack Cade with his company.
Jack Cade1 - 2
- So, sirs. Now go some and pull down the Savoy; others to th’
- Inns of Court; down with them all.
Dick the Butcher3
- I have a suit unto your lordship.
- Be it a lordship, thou shalt have it for that word.
Dick the Butcher5
- Only that the laws of England may come out of your mouth.
John Holland6 - 7
- Mass, ’twill be sore law then, for he was thrust in the
- mouth with a spear, and ’tis not whole yet.
Smith the Weaver8 - 9
- Nay, John, it will be stinking law, for his breath stinks
- with eating toasted cheese.
Jack Cade10 - 12
- I have thought upon it, it shall be so. Away, burn all the
- records of the realm, my mouth shall be the parliament of
John Holland13 - 14
- Then we are like to have biting statutes, unless his teeth
- be pull’d out.
- And henceforward all things shall be in common.
- Enter a Rebel Messenger.
Rebel Messenger16 - 18
- My lord, a prize, a prize! Here’s the Lord Say, which sold
- the towns in France; he that made us pay one and twenty
- fifteens, and one shilling to the pound, the last subsidy.
- Enter George Bevis with the Lord Say.
Jack Cade19 - 39
- Well, he shall be beheaded for it ten times. Ah, thou say,
- thou serge, nay, thou buckram lord! Now art thou within
- point-blank of our jurisdiction regal. What canst thou
- answer to my Majesty for giving up of Normandy unto
- mounsieur Basimecu, the Dauphin of France? Be it known unto
- thee by these presence, even the presence of Lord Mortimer,
- that I am the besom that must sweep the court clean of such
- filth as thou art. Thou hast most traitorously corrupted the
- youth of the realm in erecting a grammar school; and
- whereas, before, our forefathers had no other books but the
- score and the tally, thou hast caus’d printing to be us’d,
- and, contrary to the King, his crown, and dignity, thou hast
- built a paper-mill. It will be prov’d to thy face that thou
- hast men about thee that usually talk of a noun and a verb,
- and such abominable words as no Christian ear can endure to
- hear. Thou hast appointed justices of peace, to call poor
- men before them about matters they were not able to answer.
- Moreover, thou hast put them in prison, and because they
- could not read, thou hast hang’d them, when, indeed, only
- for that cause they have been most worthy to live. Thou dost
- ride in a foot-cloth, dost thou not?
- What of that?
Jack Cade41 - 42
- Marry, thou oughtst not to let thy horse wear a cloak, when
- honester men than thou go in their hose and doublets.
Dick the Butcher43 - 44
- And work in their shirt too, as myself, for example, that am
- a butcher.
- You men of Kent—
Dick the Butcher46
- What say you of Kent?
- Nothing but this; ’tis “bona terra, mala gens.”
- Away with him, away with him! He speaks Latin.
Lord Say49 - 68
- Hear me but speak, and bear me where you will.
- Kent, in the Commentaries Caesar writ,
- Is term’d the civill’st place of all this isle:
- Sweet is the country, because full of riches,
- The people liberal, valiant, active, wealthy,
- Which makes me hope you are not void of pity.
- I sold not Maine, I lost not Normandy,
- Yet to recover them would lose my life.
- Justice with favor have I always done;
- Pray’rs and tears have mov’d me, gifts could never.
- When have I aught exacted at your hands,
- But to maintain the King, the realm, and you?
- Large gifts have I bestow’d on learned clerks,
- Because my book preferr’d me to the King;
- And seeing ignorance is the curse of God,
- Knowledge the wing wherewith we fly to heaven,
- Unless you be possess’d with devilish spirits
- You cannot but forbear to murder me.
- This tongue hath parley’d unto foreign kings
- For your behoof—
- Tut, when struck’st thou one blow in the field?
Lord Say70 - 71
- Great men have reaching hands; oft have I struck
- Those that I never saw, and struck them dead.
- O monstrous coward! What, to come behind folks?
- These cheeks are pale for watching for your good.
- Give him a box o’ th’ ear, and that will make ’em red again.
Lord Say75 - 76
- Long sitting to determine poor men’s causes
- Hath made me full of sickness and diseases.
- Ye shall have a hempen caudle then, and the help of hatchet.
Dick the Butcher78
- Why dost thou quiver, man?
- The palsy, and not fear, provokes me.
Jack Cade80 - 82
- Nay, he nods at us, as who should say, I’ll be even with
- you. I’ll see if his head will stand steadier on a pole, or
- no. Take him away, and behead him.
Lord Say83 - 90
- Tell me: wherein have I offended most?
- Have I affected wealth or honor? Speak.
- Are my chests fill’d up with extorted gold?
- Is my apparel sumptuous to behold?
- Whom have I injur’d that ye seek my death?
- These hands are free from guiltless blood-shedding,
- This breast from harboring foul deceitful thoughts.
- O, let me live!
Jack Cade91 - 97
- I feel remorse in myself with his words; but I’ll bridle it.
- He shall die, and it be but for pleading so well for his
- life.—Away with him, he has a familiar under his tongue, he
- speaks not a’ God’s name. Go, take him away I say, and
- strike off his head presently, and then break into his
- son-in-law’s house, Sir James Cromer, and strike off his
- head, and bring them both upon two poles hither.
- It shall be done.
Lord Say99 - 102
- Ah, countrymen! If when you make your pray’rs,
- God should be so obdurate as yourselves,
- How would it fare with your departed souls?
- And therefore yet relent, and save my life.
Jack Cade103 - 109
- Away with him, and do as I command ye.
- Exeunt some with the Lord Say.
- The proudest peer in the realm shall not wear a head on his
- shoulders, unless he pay me tribute. There shall not a maid
- be married, but she shall pay to me her maidenhead ere they
- have it. Men shall hold of me in capite; and we charge and
- command that their wives be as free as heart can wish or
- tongue can tell.
Dick the Butcher110 - 111
- My lord, when shall we go to Cheapside and take up
- commodities upon our bills?
- Marry, presently.
- O, brave!
- Enter one with the heads of Say and Cromer upon two poles.
Jack Cade114 - 120
- But is not this braver? Let them kiss one another, for they
- lov’d well when they were alive. Now part them again, lest
- they consult about the giving up of some more towns in
- France. Soldiers, defer the spoil of the city until night;
- for with these borne before us, in stead of maces, will we
- ride through the streets, and at every corner have them
- kiss. Away!