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Henry VI, Pt. 3: Act 1, Scene 1

Henry VI, Pt. 3
Act 1, Scene 1

Scene 1

London. The Parliament House.

  1. Alarum. Enter Richard Plantagenet, the Duke of York, Edward,
  2. Richard, Norfolk, Montague, Warwick, with Drum and Soldiers,
  3. with white roses in their hats.

Earl of Warwick

4
  1. I wonder how the King escap’d our hands.

Duke of York

5 - 12
  1. While we pursu’d the horsemen of the north,
  2. He slyly stole away and left his men;
  3. Whereat the great Lord of Northumberland,
  4. Whose warlike ears could never brook retreat,
  5. Cheer’d up the drooping army, and himself,
  6. Lord Clifford, and Lord Stafford, all abreast,
  7. Charg’d our main battle’s front; and breaking in,
  8. Were by the swords of common soldiers slain.

Edward

13 - 16
  1. Lord Stafford’s father, Duke of Buckingham,
  2. Is either slain or wounded dangerous;
  3. I cleft his beaver with a downright blow.
  4. That this is true, father, behold his blood.

Marquess Montague

17 - 18
  1. And, brother, here’s the Earl of Wiltshire’s blood,
  2. Whom I encount’red as the battles join’d.

Richard

19
  1. Speak thou for me and tell them what I did.
  1. Showing the Duke of Somerset’s head.

Duke of York

21 - 22
  1. Richard hath best deserv’d of all my sons.
  2. But is your Grace dead, my Lord of Somerset?

Duke of Norfolk

23
  1. Such hope have all the line of John of Gaunt!

Richard

24
  1. Thus do I hope to shake King Henry’s head.

Earl of Warwick

25 - 31
  1. And so do I, victorious prince of York.
  2. Before I see thee seated in that throne
  3. Which now the house of Lancaster usurps,
  4. I vow by heaven these eyes shall never close.
  5. This is the palace of the fearful king,
  6. And this the regal seat. Possess it, York,
  7. For this is thine and not King Henry’s heirs’.

Duke of York

32 - 33
  1. Assist me then, sweet Warwick, and I will,
  2. For hither we have broken in by force.

Duke of Norfolk

34
  1. We’ll all assist you; he that flies shall die.

Duke of York

35 - 36
  1. Thanks, gentle Norfolk. Stay by me, my lords,
  2. And, soldiers, stay and lodge by me this night.
  1. They go up.

Earl of Warwick

38 - 39
  1. And when the King comes, offer him no violence,
  2. Unless he seek to thrust you out perforce.

Duke of York

40 - 42
  1. The Queen this day here holds her parliament,
  2. But little thinks we shall be of her council.
  3. By words or blows here let us win our right.

Richard

43
  1. Arm’d as we are, let’s stay within this house.

Earl of Warwick

44 - 47
  1. The bloody parliament shall this be call’d,
  2. Unless Plantagenet, Duke of York, be king,
  3. And bashful Henry depos’d, whose cowardice
  4. Hath made us by-words to our enemies.

Duke of York

48 - 49
  1. Then leave me not, my lords, be resolute,
  2. I mean to take possession of my right.

Earl of Warwick

50 - 54
  1. Neither the King, nor he that loves him best,
  2. The proudest he that holds up Lancaster,
  3. Dares stir a wing if Warwick shake his bells.
  4. I’ll plant Plantagenet, root him up who dares.
  5. Resolve thee, Richard, claim the English crown.
  1. York takes the throne.
  1. Flourish. Enter King Henry, Clifford, Northumberland,
  2. Westmorland, Exeter, and the rest, with red roses in their
  3. hats.

King Henry the Sixth

59 - 65
  1. My lords, look where the sturdy rebel sits,
  2. Even in the chair of state. Belike he means,
  3. Back’d by the power of Warwick, that false peer,
  4. To aspire unto the crown and reign as king.
  5. Earl of Northumberland, he slew thy father,
  6. And thine, Lord Clifford, and you both have vow’d revenge
  7. On him, his sons, his favorites, and his friends.

Earl of Northumberland

66
  1. If I be not, heavens be reveng’d on me!

Lord Clifford

67
  1. The hope thereof makes Clifford mourn in steel.

Earl of Westmorland

68 - 69
  1. What, shall we suffer this? Let’s pluck him down.
  2. My heart for anger burns, I cannot brook it.

King Henry the Sixth

70
  1. Be patient, gentle Earl of Westmorland.

Lord Clifford

71 - 74
  1. Patience is for poltroons, such as he.
  2. He durst not sit there, had your father liv’d.
  3. My gracious lord, here in the parliament
  4. Let us assail the family of York.

Earl of Northumberland

75
  1. Well hast thou spoken, cousin, be it so.

King Henry the Sixth

76 - 77
  1. Ah, know you not the city favors them,
  2. And they have troops of soldiers at their beck?

Duke of Exeter

78
  1. But when the Duke is slain, they’ll quickly fly.

King Henry the Sixth

79 - 85
  1. Far be the thought of this from Henry’s heart,
  2. To make a shambles of the parliament house!
  3. Cousin of Exeter, frowns, words, and threats
  4. Shall be the war that Henry means to use.
  5. Thou factious Duke of York, descend my throne,
  6. And kneel for grace and mercy at my feet:
  7. I am thy sovereign.

Duke of York

86
  1.                     I am thine.

Duke of Exeter

87
  1. For shame, come down. He made thee Duke of York.

Duke of York

88
  1. It was my inheritance, as the earldom was.

Duke of Exeter

89
  1. Thy father was a traitor to the crown.

Earl of Warwick

90 - 91
  1. Exeter, thou art a traitor to the crown,
  2. In following this usurping Henry.

Lord Clifford

92
  1. Whom should he follow but his natural king?

Earl of Warwick

93
  1. True, Clifford, that’s Richard Duke of York.

King Henry the Sixth

94
  1. And shall I stand, and thou sit in my throne?

Duke of York

95
  1. It must and shall be so. Content thyself.

Earl of Warwick

96
  1. Be Duke of Lancaster, let him be King.

Earl of Westmorland

97 - 98
  1. He is both King and Duke of Lancaster,
  2. And that the Lord of Westmorland shall maintain.

Earl of Warwick

99 - 102
  1. And Warwick shall disprove it. You forget
  2. That we are those which chas’d you from the field,
  3. And slew your fathers, and with colors spread
  4. March’d through the city to the palace gates.

Earl of Northumberland

103 - 104
  1. Yes, Warwick, I remember it to my grief,
  2. And by his soul, thou and thy house shall rue it.

Earl of Westmorland

105 - 107
  1. Plantagenet, of thee and these thy sons,
  2. Thy kinsmen and thy friends, I’ll have more lives
  3. Than drops of blood were in my father’s veins.

Lord Clifford

108 - 110
  1. Urge it no more, lest that, in stead of words,
  2. I send thee, Warwick, such a messenger
  3. As shall revenge his death before I stir.

Earl of Warwick

111
  1. Poor Clifford, how I scorn his worthless threats!

Duke of York

112 - 113
  1. Will you we show our title to the crown?
  2. If not, our swords shall plead it in the field.

King Henry the Sixth

114 - 119
  1. What title hast thou, traitor, to the crown?
  2. Thy father was, as thou art, Duke of York,
  3. Thy grandfather, Roger Mortimer, Earl of March:
  4. I am the son of Henry the Fifth,
  5. Who made the Dauphin and the French to stoop,
  6. And seiz’d upon their towns and provinces.

Earl of Warwick

120
  1. Talk not of France, sith thou hast lost it all.

King Henry the Sixth

121 - 122
  1. The Lord Protector lost it, and not I;
  2. When I was crown’d I was but nine months old.

Richard

123 - 124
  1. You are old enough now, and yet methinks you lose.
  2. Father, tear the crown from the usurper’s head.

Edward

125
  1. Sweet father, do so, set it on your head.

Marquess Montague

126 - 127
  1. Good brother, as thou lov’st and honorest arms,
  2. Let’s fight it out, and not stand cavilling thus.

Richard

128
  1. Sound drums and trumpets, and the King will fly.

Duke of York

129
  1. Sons, peace!

King Henry the Sixth

130
  1. Peace thou! And give King Henry leave to speak.

Earl of Warwick

131 - 133
  1. Plantagenet shall speak first. Hear him, lords,
  2. And be you silent and attentive too,
  3. For he that interrupts him shall not live.

King Henry the Sixth

134 - 140
  1. Think’st thou that I will leave my kingly throne,
  2. Wherein my grandsire and my father sat?
  3. No; first shall war unpeople this my realm;
  4. Ay, and their colors, often borne in France,
  5. And now in England to our heart’s great sorrow,
  6. Shall be my winding-sheet. Why faint you, lords?
  7. My title’s good, and better far than his.

Earl of Warwick

141
  1. Prove it, Henry, and thou shalt be King.

King Henry the Sixth

142
  1. Henry the Fourth by conquest got the crown.

Duke of York

143
  1. ’Twas by rebellion against his king.

King Henry the Sixth

144 - 146
  1. Aside.
  2. I know not what to say, my title’s weak.—
  3. Tell me, may not a king adopt an heir?

Duke of York

147
  1. What then?

King Henry the Sixth

148 - 151
  1. And if he may, then am I lawful king;
  2. For Richard, in the view of many lords,
  3. Resign’d the crown to Henry the Fourth,
  4. Whose heir my father was, and I am his.

Duke of York

152 - 153
  1. He rose against him, being his sovereign,
  2. And made him to resign his crown perforce.

Earl of Warwick

154 - 155
  1. Suppose, my lords, he did it unconstrain’d,
  2. Think you ’twere prejudicial to his crown?

Duke of Exeter

156 - 157
  1. No; for he could not so resign his crown
  2. But that the next heir should succeed and reign.

King Henry the Sixth

158
  1. Art thou against us, Duke of Exeter?

Duke of Exeter

159
  1. His is the right, and therefore pardon me.

Duke of York

160
  1. Why whisper you, my lords, and answer not?

Duke of Exeter

161
  1. My conscience tells me he is lawful king.

King Henry the Sixth

162 - 163
  1. Aside.
  2. All will revolt from me and turn to him.

Earl of Northumberland

164 - 165
  1. Plantagenet, for all the claim thou lay’st,
  2. Think not that Henry shall be so depos’d.

Earl of Warwick

166
  1. Depos’d he shall be, in despite of all.

Earl of Northumberland

167 - 170
  1. Thou art deceiv’d. ’Tis not thy southern power
  2. Of Essex, Norfolk, Suffolk, nor of Kent,
  3. Which makes thee thus presumptuous and proud,
  4. Can set the Duke up in despite of me.

Lord Clifford

171 - 174
  1. King Henry, be thy title right or wrong,
  2. Lord Clifford vows to fight in thy defense.
  3. May that ground gape, and swallow me alive,
  4. Where I shall kneel to him that slew my father!

King Henry the Sixth

175
  1. O Clifford, how thy words revive my heart!

Duke of York

176 - 177
  1. Henry of Lancaster, resign thy crown.
  2. What mutter you, or what conspire you, lords?

Earl of Warwick

178 - 181
  1. Do right unto this princely Duke of York,
  2. Or I will fill the house with armed men,
  3. And over the chair of state, where now he sits,
  4. Write up his title with usurping blood.
  1. He stamps with his foot, and the Soldiers show themselves.

King Henry the Sixth

183 - 184
  1. My Lord of Warwick, hear but one word:
  2. Let me for this my lifetime reign as king.

Duke of York

185 - 186
  1. Confirm the crown to me and to mine heirs,
  2. And thou shalt reign in quiet while thou liv’st.

King Henry the Sixth

187 - 188
  1. I am content: Richard Plantagenet,
  2. Enjoy the kingdom after my decease.

Lord Clifford

189
  1. What wrong is this unto the Prince your son!

Earl of Warwick

190
  1. What good is this to England and himself!

Earl of Westmorland

191
  1. Base, fearful, and despairing Henry!

Lord Clifford

192
  1. How hast thou injur’d both thyself and us!

Earl of Westmorland

193
  1. I cannot stay to hear these articles.

Earl of Northumberland

194
  1. Nor I.

Lord Clifford

195
  1. Come, cousin, let us tell the Queen these news.

Earl of Westmorland

196 - 197
  1. Farewell, faint-hearted and degenerate king,
  2. In whose cold blood no spark of honor bides.
  1. Exit.

Earl of Northumberland

199 - 200
  1. Be thou a prey unto the house of York,
  2. And die in bands for this unmanly deed!
  1. Exit.

Lord Clifford

202 - 203
  1. In dreadful war mayst thou be overcome,
  2. Or live in peace abandon’d and despis’d!
  1. Exit.

Earl of Warwick

205
  1. Turn this way, Henry, and regard them not.

Duke of Exeter

206
  1. They seek revenge, and therefore will not yield.

King Henry the Sixth

207
  1. Ah, Exeter!

Earl of Warwick

208
  1.             Why should you sigh, my lord?

King Henry the Sixth

209 - 219
  1. Not for myself, Lord Warwick, but my son,
  2. Whom I unnaturally shall disinherit.
  3. But be it as it may.
  4. To York.
  5.                      I here entail
  6. The crown to thee and to thine heirs forever,
  7. Conditionally that here thou take an oath
  8. To cease this civil war, and whilst I live
  9. To honor me as thy king and sovereign,
  10. And neither by treason nor hostility
  11. To seek to put me down and reign thyself.

Duke of York

220
  1. This oath I willingly take and will perform.

Earl of Warwick

221
  1. Long live King Henry! Plantagenet, embrace him.

King Henry the Sixth

222
  1. And long live thou, and these thy forward sons!

Duke of York

223
  1. Now York and Lancaster are reconcil’d.

Duke of Exeter

224
  1. Accurs’d be he that seeks to make them foes!
  1. Sennet. Here they come down.

Duke of York

226
  1. Farewell, my gracious lord, I’ll to my castle.
  1. Exeunt York and his sons with Soldiers.

Earl of Warwick

228
  1. And I’ll keep London with my soldiers.
  1. Exit with Soldiers.

Duke of Norfolk

230
  1. And I to Norfolk with my followers.
  1. Exit with Soldiers.

Marquess Montague

232
  1. And I unto the sea, from whence I came.
  1. Exit with Soldiers.

King Henry the Sixth

234
  1. And I with grief and sorrow to the court.
  1. Enter the Queen Margaret and Prince Edward.

Duke of Exeter

236 - 237
  1. Here comes the Queen, whose looks bewray her anger.
  2. I’ll steal away.

King Henry the Sixth

238
  1.                  Exeter, so will I.

Queen Margaret

239
  1. Nay, go not from me, I will follow thee.

King Henry the Sixth

240
  1. Be patient, gentle queen, and I will stay.

Queen Margaret

241 - 251
  1. Who can be patient in such extremes?
  2. Ah, wretched man, would I had died a maid
  3. And never seen thee, never borne thee son,
  4. Seeing thou hast prov’d so unnatural a father!
  5. Hath he deserv’d to lose his birthright thus?
  6. Hadst thou but lov’d him half so well as I,
  7. Or felt that pain which I did for him once,
  8. Or nourish’d him as I did with my blood,
  9. Thou wouldst have left thy dearest heart-blood there
  10. Rather than have made that savage duke thine heir,
  11. And disinherited thine only son.

Prince

252 - 253
  1. Father, you cannot disinherit me.
  2. If you be king, why should not I succeed?

King Henry the Sixth

254 - 255
  1. Pardon me, Margaret, pardon me, sweet son,
  2. The Earl of Warwick and the Duke enforc’d me.

Queen Margaret

256 - 282
  1. Enforc’d thee? Art thou king, and wilt be forc’d?
  2. I shame to hear thee speak. Ah, timorous wretch,
  3. Thou hast undone thyself, thy son, and me,
  4. And giv’n unto the house of York such head
  5. As thou shalt reign but by their sufferance.
  6. To entail him and his heirs unto the crown,
  7. What is it, but to make thy sepulchre,
  8. And creep into it far before thy time?
  9. Warwick is chancellor and the lord of Callice,
  10. Stern Faulconbridge commands the Narrow Seas,
  11. The Duke is made Protector of the realm,
  12. And yet shalt thou be safe? Such safety finds
  13. The trembling lamb environed with wolves.
  14. Had I been there, which am a silly woman,
  15. The soldiers should have toss’d me on their pikes,
  16. Before I would have granted to that act.
  17. But thou prefer’st thy life before thine honor;
  18. And seeing thou dost, I here divorce myself
  19. Both from thy table, Henry, and thy bed,
  20. Until that act of parliament be repeal’d
  21. Whereby my son is disinherited.
  22. The northern lords that have forsworn thy colors
  23. Will follow mine, if once they see them spread;
  24. And spread they shall be, to thy foul disgrace,
  25. And utter ruin of the house of York.
  26. Thus do I leave thee. Come, son, let’s away.
  27. Our army is ready; come, we’ll after them.

King Henry the Sixth

283
  1. Stay, gentle Margaret, and hear me speak.

Queen Margaret

284
  1. Thou hast spoke too much already; get thee gone.

King Henry the Sixth

285
  1. Gentle son Edward, thou wilt stay with me?

Queen Margaret

286
  1. Ay, to be murder’d by his enemies.

Prince

287 - 288
  1. When I return with victory from the field
  2. I’ll see your Grace; till then, I’ll follow her.

Queen Margaret

289
  1. Come, son, away, we may not linger thus.
  1. Exeunt Queen Margaret and the Prince.

King Henry the Sixth

291 - 299
  1. Poor queen, how love to me and to her son
  2. Hath made her break out into terms of rage!
  3. Reveng’d may she be on that hateful duke,
  4. Whose haughty spirit, winged with desire,
  5. Will cost my crown, and like an empty eagle
  6. Tire on the flesh of me and of my son!
  7. The loss of those three lords torments my heart;
  8. I’ll write unto them and entreat them fair;
  9. Come, cousin, you shall be the messenger.

Duke of Exeter

300
  1. And I, I hope, shall reconcile them all.
  1. Flourish. Exeunt.
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