ACT IV SCENE IV

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

King Henry VI, Part II

ACT IV SCENE IVLondon. The palace.
[ Enter KING HENRY VI with a supplication, and the QUEEN with SUFFOLK’S head, BUCKINGHAM and Lord SAY ]
QUEEN MARGARETOft have I heard that grief softens the mind,
And makes it fearful and degenerate;
Think therefore on revenge and cease to weep.
But who can cease to weep and look on this?
Here may his head lie on my throbbing breast:5
But where’s the body that I should embrace?
BUCKINGHAMWhat answer makes your grace to the rebels’
supplication?
KING HENRY VII’ll send some holy bishop to entreat;
For God forbid so many simple souls10
Should perish by the sword! And I myself,
Rather than bloody war shall cut them short,
Will parley with Jack Cade their general:
But stay, I’ll read it over once again.
QUEEN MARGARETAh, barbarous villains! hath this lovely face15
Ruled, like a wandering planet, over me,
And could it not enforce them to relent,
That were unworthy to behold the same?
KING HENRY VILord Say, Jack Cade hath sworn to have thy head.
SAYAy, but I hope your highness shall have his.20
KING HENRY VIHow now, madam!
Still lamenting and mourning for Suffolk’s death?
I fear me, love, if that I had been dead,
Thou wouldst not have mourn’d so much for me.
QUEEN MARGARETNo, my love, I should not mourn, but die for thee.25
[Enter a Messenger]
KING HENRY VIHow now! what news? why comest thou in such haste?
MessengerThe rebels are in Southwark; fly, my lord!
Jack Cade proclaims himself Lord Mortimer,
Descended from the Duke of Clarence’ house,
And calls your grace usurper openly30
And vows to crown himself in Westminster.
His army is a ragged multitude
Of hinds and peasants, rude and merciless:
Sir Humphrey Stafford and his brother’s death
Hath given them heart and courage to proceed:35
All scholars, lawyers, courtiers, gentlemen,
They call false caterpillars, and intend their death.
KING HENRY VIO graceless men! they know not what they do.
BUCKINGHAMMy gracious lord, return to Killingworth,
Until a power be raised to put them down.40
QUEEN MARGARETAh, were the Duke of Suffolk now alive,
These Kentish rebels would be soon appeased!
KING HENRY VILord Say, the traitors hate thee;
Therefore away with us to Killingworth.
SAYSo might your grace’s person be in danger.45
The sight of me is odious in their eyes;
And therefore in this city will I stay
And live alone as secret as I may.
[Enter another Messenger]
MessengerJack Cade hath gotten London bridge:
The citizens fly and forsake their houses:50
The rascal people, thirsting after prey,
Join with the traitor, and they jointly swear
To spoil the city and your royal court.
BUCKINGHAMThen linger not, my lord, away, take horse.
KING HENRY VICome, Margaret; God, our hope, will succor us.55
QUEEN MARGARETMy hope is gone, now Suffolk is deceased.
KING HENRY VIFarewell, my lord: trust not the Kentish rebels.
BUCKINGHAMTrust nobody, for fear you be betray’d.
SAYThe trust I have is in mine innocence,
And therefore am I bold and resolute.60
[Exeunt]

Continue to 2 Henry VI, Act 4, Scene 5