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Whose tongue shall ask me for one penny cost
To ransom home reyolted Mortimer.

Hot. Revolted Mortimer !
He never did fall off, my sovereign liege,
But by the chance of war. To

prove
that true

95
Needs no more but one tongue for all those wounds,
Those mouthed wounds, which valiantly he took,
When on the gentle Severn's sedgy bank,
In single opposition, hand to hand,
He did confound the best part of an hour

100 In changing hardiment with great Glendower : Three times they breathed, and three times did they drink, Upon agreement, of swift Severn's flood ; Who then, affrighted with their bloody looks, Ran fearfully among the trembling reeds,

105 And hid his crisp head in the hollow bank Blood-stained with these valiant combatants. Never did base and rotten policy Colour her working with such deadly wounds ; Nor never could the noble Mortimer

110 Receive so many, and all willingly : Then let him not be slandered with revolt.

K. Hen. Thou dost belie him, Percy, thou dost belie him; He never did encounter with Glendower :

115 He durst as well have met the devil alone As Owen Glendower for an enemy. Art thou not ashamed ? But, sirrah, henceforth Let me not hear you speak of Mortimer : Send me your prisoners with the speediest means, 120 Or you shall hear in such a kind from me As will displease you.—My lord Northumberland, We license your departure with your son.Send us your prisoners, or you 'll hear of it.

[Exeunt KING HENRY, BLUNT, and Train. Hot. An if the devil come and roar for them,

125 I will not send them : I will after straight, And tell him so ; for I will ease my heart, Although it be with hazard of my head.

I tell thee,

North. What, drunk with choler ? stay, and pause awhile ; Here comes your uncle.

Re-enter WORCESTER.
Hot.
Speak of Mortimer ?

130 'Zounds, I will speak of him ; and let my

soul Want

mercy, if I do not join with him :
Yea, on his part I'll empty all these veins,
And shed my dear blood drop by drop i’ the dust,
But I will lift the down-trod Mortimer

135
As high i’ the air as this unthankful king,
As this ingrate and cankered Bolingbroke.
North. Brother, the king hath made your nephew mad.

[To WORCESTER. Wor. Who struck this heat up, after I was gone ?

Hot. He will, forsooth, have all my prisoners ; 140 And when I urged the ransom once again Of my wife's brother, then his cheek looked pale, And on my face he turned an eye of death, Trembling even at the name of Mortimer.

Wor. I cannot blame him : was he not proclaimed, 145 By Richard that is dead, the next of blood ?

North. He was: I heard the proclamation :
And then it was when the unhappy king
(Whose wrongs in us God pardon !) did set forth
Upon his Irish expedition ;

150 From whence he intercepted did return To be deposed, and shortly murdered.

Wor. And for whose death, we in the world's wide mouth Live scandalised and foully spoken of.

Hot. But, soft, I pray you ; did King Richard then
Proclaim my brother Edmund Mortimer
Heir to the crown ?
North.

He did ; myself did hear it.
Hot. Nay, then I cannot blame his cousin king,
That wished him on the barren mountains starved.
But shall it be that you, that set the crown

160 Upon the head of this forgetful man And for his sake wear the detested blot Of murderous subornation,--shall it be

155

165

170

175

180

That you a world of curses undergo,
Being the agents, or base second means,
The cords, the ladder, or the hangman rather ?
O, pardon me, that I descend so low,
To shew the line and the predicament
Wherein you range under this subtle king.
Shall it, for shame, be spoken in these days,
Or fill

up

chronicles in time to come,
That men of your nobility and power
Did gage them both in an unjust behalf-
As both of you (God pardon it !) have done-
To put down Richard, that sweet lovely rose,
And plant this thorn, this canker, Bolingbroke ?
And shall it, in more shame, be further spoken,
That you are fooled, discarded, and shook off
By him for whom these shames ye underwent ?
No; yet time serves wherein you may redeem
Your banished honours, and restore yourselves
Into the good thoughts of the world again,
Revenge the jeering and disdained contempt
Of this proud king, who studies day and night
To answer all the debt he owes to you
Even with the bloody payment of your deaths:
Therefore, I say,

Peace, cousin, say no more :
And now I will unclasp a secret book,
And to your quick-conceiving discontents
I'll read you matter deep and dangerous,
As full of peril and adventurous spirit
As to o'er-walk a current roaring loud
On the unsteadfast footing of a spear.

Hot. If he fall in, good night!-or sink or swim.
Send danger from the east unto the west,
So honour cross it from the north to south,
And let them grapple: 0, the blood more stirs
To rouse a lion than to start a hare!

North. Imagination of some great exploit
Drives him beyond the bounds of patience.
Hot. By heaven, methinks it were an easy leap

185

Wor.

190

195

200 205

210

Wor.

215

To pluck bright honour from the pale-faced moon,
Or dive into the bottom of the deep,
Where fathom-line could never touch the ground,
And pluck up drownèd honour by the locks ;
So he that doth redeem her thence might wear,
Without corrival, all her dignities :
But out upon this half-faced fellowship !

Wor. He apprehends a world of figures here,
But not the form of what he should attend.
Good cousin, give me audience for a while.
Hot. I cry you mercy.

Those same noble Scots,
That are your prisoners-
Hot.

I'll keep them all ;
By heaven, he shall not have a Scot of them;
No, if a Scot would save his soul, he shall not :
I'll keep them, by this hand.
Wor.

You start away,
And lend no ear unto my purposes.-
Those prisoners you shall keep.
Hot.

Nay, I will ; that's flat :
He said he would not ransom Mortimer;
Forbad my tongue to speak of Mortimer;
But I will find him when he lies asleep,
And in his ear I'll holla · Mortimer!'
Nay,
I'll have a starling shall be taught to speak
Nothing but Mortimer,' and give it him,
To keep his anger still in motion.

Wor. Hear you, cousin ; a word.

Hot. All studies here I solemnly defy,
Save how to gall and pinch this Bolingbroke :
And that same sword-and-buckler Prince of Wales,
But that I think his father loves him not
And would be glad he met with some mischance,
I'd have him poisoned with a pot of ale.

Wor. Farewell, kinsman : I will talk to you
When you are better tempered to attend.

North. Why, what a wasp-stung and impatient fool

220

225

230

235

you

Art thou, to break into this woman's mood,
Tying thine ear to no tongue but thine own!

Hot. Why, look you, I am whipped and scourged with rods, Nettled, and stung with pismires, when I hear

240 Of this vile politician, Bolingbroke. In Richard's time,-what do you call the place ?A plague upon 't !-it is in Gloucestershire 'Twas where the madcap duke his uncle kept,His uncle York—where I first bowed my knee

245 Unto this king of smiles, this Bolingbroke,– When and he came back from Ravenspurgh.

North. At Berkley castle.

Hot. You say true :
Why, what a candy deal of courtesy

250 This fawning greyhound then did proffer me ! Look when his infant fortune came to age, And “gentle Harry Percy'-and “kind cousin' 0, the devil take such cozeners !—God forgive me ! Good uncle, tell your tale ; for I have done.

255 Wor. Nay, if you have not, to 't again; We'll stay your leisure. Hot.

I have done, in sooth. . .

NOTES.

23. Your highness. Henry (Boling- | 27. Misprision, mistake, misapprehen

He was

broke), son of John of Gaunt, Duke sion, error. From Lat. minus (inof Lancaster, dethroned his cousin sufficiently, improperly), and preRichard II., and reigned as King (he)ndere (to take, grasp), through Henry IV., 1399-1413.

O. Fr. mesprendre, Mod. Fr. surnamed Bolingbroke, from the prendre, part. mespris, mépris. place where he was born, in Lincoln- 38. Pouncet-box, a box for holding pershire.

fumes, with holes pounced or per24. Harry Percy here, surnamed Hot- forated in the lid. There is also a spur, son of the Earl of North

reference to pounce-box, a box for umberland. -Holmedon, or Homil- holding pounce (Fr. ponce, Lat. don Hill, near Wooler in Northum- pumicem), or pumice-powder. berland, Here Percy defeated the 40. Who refers to “his nose.' Scots, taking Douglas and other 51. Popinjay, parrot, a prating coxnobles prisoners, Sept. 14, 1402. The

comb or fop. Old Eng. Pokigay, king wanted the prisoners, to enable Fr. papegai, Ger. papagei (parrot) ; him to treat on more advantageous from Ger. papeln (to babble, chatter), terms with the Scots, against whom and Fr. gau, Lat. gallus (a cock). he had marched unsuccessfully two The n has crept in : cf. nightingale years before.

(O. Eng. nihtegale, Ger, nachtigall),

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