Home
log out +

Henry VI, Pt. 3: Act 5, Scene 4

Henry VI, Pt. 3
Act 5, Scene 4

Plains near Tewksbury.

  1. Flourish. March. Enter the Queen Margaret, young Prince
  2. Edward, Somerset, Oxford, and Soldiers.

Queen Margaret

3 - 40
  1. Great lords, wise men ne’er sit and wail their loss,
  2. But cheerly seek how to redress their harms.
  3. What though the mast be now blown overboard,
  4. The cable broke, the holding-anchor lost,
  5. And half our sailors swallow’d in the flood?
  6. Yet lives our pilot still. Is’t meet that he
  7. Should leave the helm and, like a fearful lad,
  8. With tearful eyes add water to the sea,
  9. And give more strength to that which hath too much,
  10. Whiles, in his moan, the ship splits on the rock,
  11. Which industry and courage might have sav’d?
  12. Ah, what a shame, ah, what a fault were this!
  13. Say Warwick was our anchor; what of that?
  14. And Montague our topmast; what of him?
  15. Our slaught’red friends the tackles; what of these?
  16. Why, is not Oxford here another anchor?
  17. And Somerset another goodly mast?
  18. The friends of France our shrouds and tacklings?
  19. And though unskillful, why not Ned and I
  20. For once allow’d the skillful pilot’s charge?
  21. We will not from the helm to sit and weep,
  22. But keep our course (though the rough wind say no)
  23. From shelves and rocks that threaten us with wrack.
  24. As good to chide the waves as speak them fair.
  25. And what is Edward but a ruthless sea?
  26. What Clarence but a quicksand of deceit?
  27. And Richard but a ragged fatal rock?
  28. All these the enemies to our poor bark.
  29. Say you can swim, alas, ’tis but a while;
  30. Tread on the sand, why, there you quickly sink;
  31. Bestride the rock, the tide will wash you off,
  32. Or else you famishthat’s a threefold death.
  33. This speak I, lords, to let you understand,
  34. If case some one of you would fly from us,
  35. That there’s no hop’d-for mercy with the brothers
  36. More than with ruthless waves, with sands and rocks.
  37. Why, courage then! What cannot be avoided,
  38. ’Twere childish weakness to lament or fear.

Prince

41 - 51
  1. Methinks a woman of this valiant spirit
  2. Should, if a coward heard her speak these words,
  3. Infuse his breast with magnanimity,
  4. And make him, naked, foil a man at arms.
  5. I speak not this as doubting any here;
  6. For did I but suspect a fearful man,
  7. He should have leave to go away betimes,
  8. Lest in our need he might infect another,
  9. And make him of like spirit to himself.
  10. If any such be hereas God forbid!—
  11. Let him depart before we need his help.

Earl of Oxford

52 - 56
  1. Women and children of so high a courage,
  2. And warriors faint! Why, ’twere perpetual shame.
  3. O brave young prince! Thy famous grandfather
  4. Doth live again in thee. Long mayst thou live
  5. To bear his image and renew his glories!

Duke of Somerset

57 - 59
  1. And he that will not fight for such a hope
  2. Go home to bed, and like the owl by day,
  3. If he arise, be mock’d and wond’red at.

Queen Margaret

60
  1. Thanks, gentle Somerset, sweet Oxford, thanks.

Prince

61
  1. And take his thanks that yet hath nothing else.
  1. Enter Second Lancastrian Messenger.

Second Lancastrian Messenger

63 - 64
  1. Prepare you, lords, for Edward is at hand,
  2. Ready to fight; therefore be resolute.

Earl of Oxford

65 - 66
  1. I thought no less; it is his policy
  2. To haste thus fast, to find us unprovided.

Duke of Somerset

67
  1. But he’s deceiv’d, we are in readiness.

Queen Margaret

68
  1. This cheers my heart, to see your forwardness.

Earl of Oxford

69
  1. Here pitch our battle, hence we will not budge.
  1. Flourish and march. Enter King Edward, Richard of
  2. Gloucester, Clarence, and Soldiers.

King Edward

72 - 77
  1. Brave followers, yonder stands the thorny wood,
  2. Which by the heavens’ assistance and your strength,
  3. Must by the roots be hewn up yet ere night.
  4. I need not add more fuel to your fire,
  5. For well I wot ye blaze to burn them out.
  6. Give signal to the fight, and to it, lords!

Queen Margaret

78 - 87
  1. Lords, knights, and gentlemen, what I should say
  2. My tears gainsay; for every word I speak,
  3. Ye see I drink the water of my eye.
  4. Therefore no more but this: Henry, your sovereign,
  5. Is prisoner to the foe, his state usurp’d,
  6. His realm a slaughter-house, his subjects slain,
  7. His statutes cancell’d, and his treasure spent;
  8. And yonder is the wolf that makes this spoil.
  9. You fight in justice; then in God’s name, lords,
  10. Be valiant, and give signal to the fight.
  1. Alarum to the battle. Retreat. King Edward, with his
  2. followers, flies. Excursions; the chambers be discharged.
  1. Then enter King Edward, Clarence, Gloucester, and the rest
  2. of the King’s followers and make a great shout, and cry,
  3. For York! For York!”.
  1. Then Queen Margaret is taken, and Prince Edward and Oxford
  2. and Somerset.
  1. Exeunt.
© 2019 Unotate.comcontactprivacy policyCreative Commons text from PlayShakespeare.comAll illustrations are public domain or Creative Commons