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Q. Eliz. Harp on it still shall I, till heart-strings break. K. Rich. Now, by my george, my garter, and my

crown, Q. Eliz. Profan'd, dishonour'd, and the third usurp'd. K. Rich. I swear. Q. Eliz.

By nothing; for this is no oath.
Thy george, profan’d, hath lost his holy honour;
Thy garter, 2 blemish'd, pawn'd his knightly virtue ;
Thy crown, usurp’d, disgrac'd his kingly glory:
If something thou would’st swear to be believ'd,
Swear then by something that thou hast not wrong'd.

K. Rich. Now by the world, —
Q. Eliz.

'Tis full of thy foul wrongs. K. Rich. My father's death, Q. Eliz.

Thy life hath that dishonour'd. K. Rich. Then, by myself, Q. Eliz.

Thyself is self-mis-us'd. K. Rich. Why then, by God, Q. Eliz.

God's wrong is most of all. If thou had'st fear'd to break an oath by him,3 The unity, the king thy brother made, Had not been broken, nor my brother slain.

2 Thy george, profan'd, hath lost his holy honour ;

Thy garter, &c.] The quarto reads-The george, &c. The folio-Thy george; &c. and, afterwards,-lordly instead of-holy.

Steevens. 3 God's

wrong is most of all. If thou hadost fear'd to break an oath by him, &c.] I have followed the quarto, except that it reads in the preceding speech, Why then, by God - The editors of the folio, from the appre. hension of the penalty of the Statute, 3 Jac. I, c. 21, printed “Why then by heaven," -and the whole they absurdly exhibited thus :

Rich. Why then, by heaven.

“ Qu. Heaven's wrong is most of all.
If thou didst fear to break an oath with him,
“ The unity,” &c.
« If thou had'st fear’d to break an oath by him,

“ The imperial metal,” &c. By their alteration in the first line of the Queen's speech, they made all that follows ungrammatical. The change in the prece. ding speech, not having that consequence, I have adopted it.

Malone. - the king thy brother made, Had not been broken, nor my brother slain.] The quarto, by

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it thou had'st fear'd to break an oath by him,
The imperial metal, circling now thy head,
Had grac'd the tender temples of my child;
And both the princes had been breathing here,
Which now, two tender bed-fellows for dust,5
Thy broken faith hath made a prey for worms.
What canst thou swear by now?
K. Rich.

By the time to come.
Q. Eliz. That thou hast wronged in the time o'er-past;
For I myself have many tears to wash
Hereafter time, for time past, wrong'd by thee.
The children live, whose parents thou hast slaughter’d,
Ungovernd youth, to wail it in their age: 8
The parents live, whose children thou hast butcher'd,
Old barren plants, to wail it with their age.
Swear not by time to come; for that thou hast
Misus'd ere used, by times ill-us'd o'er-past.

K. Rich. As I intend to prosper, and repent!
So thrive I in my dangerous attempt
Of hostile arms! myself myself confound!
Heaven, and fortune, bar me happy hours !!
Day, yieid me not thy light; nor, night, thy rest!
Be opposite all planets of good luck
To my proceeding, if, with pure heart's love,
Immaculate devotion, holy thoughts,
I tender not thy beauteous princely daughter!

6

an error of the press, has—my brother, which the editor of the folio corrected thus :

The unity the king, my husband, made,

Thou hadst not broken, nor my brothers died. Malone. 5 Which now, two tender bed-fellows &c.] Mr. Roderick observes, that the word two is without any force, and would read:

Which now too tender &c. Steevens. Thus the folio. The quarto-two tender play-fellows. Malone. - a prey for worms.] So the quarto. Folio-the prey.

Malone. * By the time to come. ] So the quarto. By is not in the folio.

Malone, 8 — to wail it in their age:] So the quarto, 1598. The quarto, 1602, &c. and the folio, read with their age. Malone.

in my dangerous attempt -) So the quarto. Folio-dangerous affairs. Malone.

! Heaven, and fortune, bar me happy hours!) This line is found, only in the folio. Malone.

In her consists my happiness, and thine;
Without her, follows to myself, and thee,
Herself, the land, and many a christian soul,
Death, desolation, ruin, and decay:
It cannot be avoided, but by this;
It will not be avoided, but by this.
Therefore, dear mother, (I must call you so)
Be the attorney of my love to her.
Plead what I will be, not what I have been;
Not my deserts, but what I will deserve:
Urge the necessity and state of times,
And be not peevisha found in great designs.

Q. Eliz. Shall I be tempted of the devil thus?
K. Rich. Ay, if the devil tempt thee to do good.
Q. Eliz. Shall I forget myself, to be myself?
K. Rich. Ay, if your self's remembrance wrong your-

self.
Q. Eliz. But thou didst kill my children.
K. Rich. But in your daughter's womb I bury them:
Where, in that nest of spicery they shall breed 3
Selves of themselves, to your recomforture.

Q. Eliz. Shall I go win my daughter to thy will ?
K. Rich. And be a happy mother by the deed.

Q. Eliz. I go. Write to me very shortly,
And you shall understand from me her mind.
K. Rich. Bear her my true love's kiss, and so farewel.

[Kissing her. Exit Q. ELIZ.

2 And be not peevish found -] Thus the folio-Peevish in our author's time signified foolish. So, in the second scene of this Act:

“When Richmond was a little peevish boy, -.' See also Minsheu's Dict. in v. The quarto reads--peevish fond, and I am not sure that it is not right. A compound epithet might have been intended, peevish-fond. So childish-foolish, senseless-obstinate, foolish-witty, &c. Malone.

I believe the present reading is the true one. So, in King Henry VIII:

have great care
"] be not found a talker.” Steevens.

in that nest of spicery, they shall breed - ] Alluding to the phænix. Steevens. So the quarto. The folio reads--they will breed. Malone.

shortly,] This adverb, in the present instance, is employed as a trisyllable. See Mr. Tyrwhitt's note, Vol. II, p. 160.

Steevens.

3

Relenting fool, and shallow, changing-woman!
How now? what news?

Enter RatclIFF; CATESBY following.
Rat. Most mighty sovereign, on the western coast
Rideth a puissant navy; to the shore
Throng many doubtful hollow-hearted friends,
Unarm’d, and unresolv'd to beat them back:
'Tis thought, that Richmond is their admiral;
And there they hull, expecting but the aid
Of Buckingham, to welcome them ashore.
K. Rich. Some light-foot friend post to the dukes of

Norfolk :-
Ratcliff, thyself, or Catesby; where is he?

Cates. Here, my good lord.
K. Rich.

Catesby, fly to the duke. Cates. I will, my lord, with all convenient haste.

K. Rich. Ratcliff, come hither:7 Post to Salisbury; When thou com'st thither, Dull unmindful villain,

[T. CATES. Why stay’st thou here, and go'st not to the duke? Cates. First, mighty liege, tell me your highness'

pleasure, What from your grace I shall deliver to him.

K. Rich. O, true, good Catesby ;-Bid him levy straight The greatest strength and power he can make, And meet me suddenly at Salisbury. Cates. I go.

Erit. Rat. What, may it please you, shall I do at Salisbury ? K. Rich. Why, what would'st thou do there, before I

go?

Rat. Your highness told me, I should post before.

5 Relenting fool, and shallow, changing-woman!] Such was the real character of this Queen dowager, who would have married her daughter to King Richard, and did all in her power to alienate the Marquis of Dorset, her son, from the Earl of Richmond.

Steevens. 6 Some light-foot friend post to the duke -) Richard's precipitistion and confusion is in this scene very happily represented by in. consistent orders, and sudden variations of opinion. Johnson.

7 Ratcliff, come hither:] The folio has--Catesb;', come hither. The words are not in the quarto. It is obvious that they are ad. dressed to Ratcliff. The correction was made by Mr. Rowe.

Malone: VOL. XI.

P

Enter STANLEY. K. Rich. My mind is chang'.-Stanley, what news

with you? Stan. None good, my liege, to please you with the

hearing;
Nor none so bad, but well may be reported.

K. Rich. Heyday, a riddle! neither good nor bad!
What need'st thou run so many miles about,
When thou may'st tell thy tale the nearest way?
Once more, what news?
Stan,

Richmond is on the seas.
K. Rich. There let him sink, and be the seas on him!
White-liver'd runagate, & what doth he there?

Stan. I know not, mighty sovereign, but by guess.
K. Rich. Well, as you guess?

Stan. Stirr'd up by Dorset, Buckingham, and Morton, He makes for England, here to claim the crown.

K. Rich. Is the chair empty ? is the sword unsway'a ?
Is the king dead? the empire unpossess'd?
What heir of York' is there alive, but we?
And who is England's king, but great York's heir?
Then, tell me, what makes he upon the seas?

Stan. Unless for that, my liege, I cannot guess.
K. Rich. Unless for that he comes to be your liege,

8 White-liver'd runagate,] This epithet, descriptive of cowardice, is not peculiar to Shakspeare. Stephen Gosson in his School of Abuse, 1579, speaking of the Helots, says: “ Leave those precepts to the white-livered Hylotes."

Steevens. 9 What heir of York -] i. e. What son of Richard Duke of York ? Ritson.

Richard asks this question in the plenitude of power, and no one dares to answer him. But they whom he addresses, had they not been intimidated, might have told him, that there was a male heir of the house of York alive, who had a better claim to the throne than he; Edward Earl of Warwick, the only son of the Usurper's elder brother, George Duke of Clarence; and Elizabeth, the eldest daughter of Edward IV, and all her sisters, had a better title than either of them. Malone.

The isstle of King Edward had been pronounced illegitimate, the Duke of Clarence attainted of high treason,—and the usurper declared “the undoubted heir of Richard duke of York,”_by act of parliament: so that, as far as such a proceeding can alter the con. stitution, and-legalize usurpation and murder, he is perfectly correct and unanswerable. Ritson.

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