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Richard III: Act 3, Scene 4

Richard III
Act 3, Scene 4

The Tower of London.

  1. Enter Buckingham, Stanley, Earl of Derby, Hastings, Bishop
  2. of Ely, Norfolk, Ratcliffe, Lovel, with others, at a table.

Hastings

3 - 5
  1. Now, noble peers, the cause why we are met
  2. Is to determine of the coronation.
  3. In God’s name speak, when is the royal day?

Duke of Buckingham

6
  1. Is all things ready for the royal time?

Stanley

7
  1. It is, and wants but nomination.

Ely

8
  1. Tomorrow then I judge a happy day.

Duke of Buckingham

9 - 10
  1. Who knows the Lord Protector’s mind herein?
  2. Who is most inward with the noble Duke?

Ely

11
  1. Your Grace, we think, should soonest know his mind.

Duke of Buckingham

12 - 15
  1. We know each other’s faces; for our hearts,
  2. He knows no more of mine than I of yours,
  3. Or I of his, my lord, than you of mine.
  4. Lord Hastings, you and he are near in love.

Hastings

16 - 22
  1. I thank his Grace, I know he loves me well;
  2. But for his purpose in the coronation,
  3. I have not sounded him, nor he deliver’d
  4. His gracious pleasure any way therein.
  5. But you, my honorable lords, may name the time,
  6. And in the Duke’s behalf I’ll give my voice,
  7. Which I presume he’ll take in gentle part.
  1. Enter Gloucester.

Ely

24
  1. In happy time, here comes the Duke himself.

Richard, Duke of Gloucester

25 - 28
  1. My noble lords and cousins all, good morrow.
  2. I have been long a sleeper; but I trust
  3. My absence doth neglect no great design,
  4. Which by my presence might have been concluded.

Duke of Buckingham

29 - 31
  1. Had you not come upon your cue, my lord,
  2. William Lord Hastings had pronounc’d your part,
  3. I mean your voice for crowning of the King.

Richard, Duke of Gloucester

32 - 36
  1. Than my Lord Hastings no man might be bolder,
  2. His lordship knows me well and loves me well.
  3. My Lord of Ely, when I was last in Holborn,
  4. I saw good strawberries in your garden there.
  5. I do beseech you send for some of them.

Ely

37
  1. Marry, and will, my lord, with all my heart.
  1. Exit Bishop.

Richard, Duke of Gloucester

39 - 45
  1. Cousin of Buckingham, a word with you.
  2. Drawing him aside.
  3. Catesby hath sounded Hastings in our business,
  4. And finds the testy gentleman so hot
  5. That he will lose his head ere give consent
  6. His master’s child, as worshipfully he terms it,
  7. Shall lose the royalty of England’s throne.

Duke of Buckingham

46
  1. Withdraw yourself a while, I’ll go with you.
  1. Exeunt Gloucester and Buckingham.

Stanley

48 - 51
  1. We have not yet set down this day of triumph.
  2. Tomorrow, in my judgment, is too sudden,
  3. For I myself am not so well provided
  4. As else I would be, were the day prolong’d.
  1. Enter the Bishop of Ely.

Ely

53 - 54
  1. Where is my lord the Duke of Gloucester?
  2. I have sent for these strawberries.

Hastings

55 - 60
  1. His Grace looks cheerfully and smooth this morning;
  2. There’s some conceit or other likes him well,
  3. When that he bids good morrow with such spirit.
  4. I think there’s never a man in Christendom
  5. Can lesser hide his love or hate than he,
  6. For by his face straight shall you know his heart.

Stanley

61 - 62
  1. What of his heart perceive you in his face
  2. By any livelihood he show’d today?

Hastings

63 - 64
  1. Marry, that with no man here he is offended;
  2. For were he, he had shown it in his looks.

Stanley

65
  1. I pray God he be not, I say.
  1. Enter Richard of Gloucester and Buckingham

Richard, Duke of Gloucester

67 - 70
  1. I pray you all, tell me what they deserve
  2. That do conspire my death with devilish plots
  3. Of damned witchcraft, and that have prevail’d
  4. Upon my body with their hellish charms?

Hastings

71 - 74
  1. The tender love I bear your Grace, my lord,
  2. Makes me most forward in this princely presence
  3. To doom th’ offenders, whosoe’er they be:
  4. I say, my lord, they have deserved death.

Richard, Duke of Gloucester

75 - 80
  1. Then be your eyes the witness of their evil.
  2. Look how I am bewitch’d; behold, mine arm
  3. Is like a blasted sapling, wither’d up;
  4. And this is Edward’s wife, that monstrous witch,
  5. Consorted with that harlot, strumpet Shore,
  6. That by their witchcraft thus have marked me.

Hastings

81
  1. If they have done this deed, my noble lord

Richard, Duke of Gloucester

82 - 87
  1. If? Thou protector of this damned strumpet,
  2. Talk’st thou to me of ifs”? Thou art a traitor.
  3. Off with his head! Now by Saint Paul I swear
  4. I will not dine until I see the same.
  5. Lovel and Ratcliffe, look that it be done:
  6. The rest that love me, rise, and follow me.
  1. Exeunt. Manent Lovel and Ratcliffe with the Lord Hastings.

Hastings

89 - 102
  1. Woe, woe for England, not a whit for me!
  2. For I, too fond, might have prevented this.
  3. Stanley did dream the boar did rase our helms,
  4. And I did scorn it and disdain to fly.
  5. Three times today my foot-cloth horse did scumble,
  6. And started when he look’d upon the Tower,
  7. As loath to bear me to the slaughter-house.
  8. O now I need the priest that spake to me!
  9. I now repent I told the pursuivant,
  10. As too triumphing, how mine enemies
  11. Today at Pomfret bloodily were butcher’d,
  12. And I myself secure, in grace and favor.
  13. O Margaret, Margaret, now thy heavy curse
  14. Is lighted on poor Hastings’ wretched head!

Ratcliffe

103 - 104
  1. Come, come, dispatch, the Duke would be at dinner,
  2. Make a short shrift, he longs to see your head.

Hastings

105 - 110
  1. O momentary grace of mortal men,
  2. Which we more hunt for than the grace of God!
  3. Who builds his hope in air of your good looks
  4. Lives like a drunken sailor on a mast,
  5. Ready with every nod to tumble down
  6. Into the fatal bowels of the deep.

Lovel

111
  1. Come, come, dispatch, ’tis bootless to exclaim.

Hastings

112 - 116
  1. O bloody Richard! Miserable England!
  2. I prophesy the fearfull’st time to thee
  3. That ever wretched age hath look’d upon.
  4. Come, lead me to the block; bear him my head.
  5. They smile at me who shortly shall be dead.
  1. Exeunt.
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