William Shakespeare's The Tragedy of King Richard the <i><b>Third </b></i>in the complete original text.
William Shakespeare's plays, sonnets and poems at AbsoluteShakespeare.com
Home Plays Sonnets Poems Quotes Summaries Essays Glossary Links Help

HOME > Plays > The Tragedy of King Richard the Third > Act III. Scene I.

The Tragedy of King Richard the Third

Study Guides
Hamlet
Julius Caesar
King Henry IV
King Lear
Macbeth
Merchant of Venice
Othello
Romeo and Juliet
The Tempest
Twelfth Night

Trivia
Authorship
Bard Facts
Bibliography
Biography
FAQ
Films
Globe Theatre
Pictures
Quiz
Timeline

Act III. Scene I.

Act III. Scene I.—The Same. A Street.

The Trumpets sound. Enter the PRINCE OF
WALES, GLOUCESTER, BUCKINGHAM,
CATESBY, CARDINAL BOURCHIER,
and Others.

Buck. Welcome, sweet prince, to London, to
your chamber.
Glo. Welcome, dear cousin, my thoughts'
sovereign;
The weary way hath made you melancholy.
Prince. No, uncle; but our crosses on the
way
Have made it tedious, wearisome, and heavy:
I want more uncles here to welcome me.
Glo. Sweet prince, the untainted virtue of
your years
Hath not yet div'd into the world's deceit:
No more can you distinguish of a man
Than of his outward show; which, God he
knows,
Seldom or never jumpeth with the heart.
Those uncles which you want were dangerous;
Your Grace attended to their sugar'd words,
But look'd not on the poison of their hearts:
God keep you from them, and from such false
friends!
Prince. God keep me from false friends! but
they were none.
Glo. My lord, the Mayor of London comes to
greet you.

Enter the Lord Mayor and his Train.
May. God bless your Grace with health and
happy days!
Prince. I thank you, good my lord; and
thank you all.
I thought my mother and my brother York
Would long ere this have met us on the way:
Fie! what a slug is Hastings, that he comes not
To tell us whether they will come or no.

Enter HASTINGS.
Buck. And in good time here comes the sweat-
ing lord.
Prince. Welcome, my lord. What, will our
mother come?
East. On what occasion. God he knows,
not I,
The queen your mother, and your brother York,
Have taken sanctuary: the tender prince
Would fain have come with me to meet your
Grace,
But by his mother was perforce withheld.
Buck. Fie! what an indirect and peevish
course
Is this of hers! Lord Cardinal, will your Grace
Persuade the queen to send the Duke of York
Unto his princely brother presently?
If she deny, Lord Hastings, go with him,
And from her jealous arms pluck him perforce.
Card. My Lord of Buckingham, if my weak
oratory
Can from his mother win the Duke of York,
Anon expect him here; but if she be obdurate
To mild entreaties, God in heaven forbid
We should infringe the holy privilege
Of blessed sanctuary! not for all this land
Would I be guilty of so great a sin.
Buck. You are too senseless-obstinate, my
lord,
Too ceremonious and traditional:
Weigh it but with the grossness of this age,
You break not sanctuary in seizing him.
The benefit thereof is always granted
To those whose dealings have deserv'd the place
And those who have the wit to claim the place:
This prince hath neither claim'd it, nor deserv'd
it;
And therefore, in mine opinion, cannot have it:
Then, taking him from thence that is not there,
You break no privilege nor charter there.
Oft have I heard of sanctuary men,
But sanctuary children ne'er till now.
Card. My lord, you shall o'er-rule my mind
for once.
Come on. Lord Hastings, will you go with me?
Hast. I go, my lord.
Prince. Good lords, make all the speedy
haste you may.
[Exeunt CARDINAL BOURCHIER and
HASTINGS.
Say, uncle Gloucester, if our brother come,
Where shall we sojourn till our coronation?
Glo. Where it seems best unto your royal
self.
If I may counsel you, some day or two
Your highness shall repose you at the Tower:
Then where you please, and shall be thought
most fit
For your best health and recreation.
Prince. I do not like the Tower, of any place:
Did Julius Cæsar build that place, my lord?
Buck. He did, my gracious lord, begin that
place,
Which, since, succeeding ages have re-edified.
Prince. Is it upon record, or else reported
Successively from age to age, he built it?
Buck. Upon record, my gracious lord.
Prince. But say, my lord, it were not regis-
ter'd,
Methinks the truth should live from age to age,
As 'twere retail'd to all posterity,
Even to the general all-ending day.
Glo. [Aside.] So wise so young, they say, do
never live long.
Prince. What say you, uncle?
Glo. I say, without characters, fame lives long.
[Aside.] Thus, like the formal Vice, Iniquity,
I moralize two meanings in one word.
Prince. That Julius Cæsar was a famous man;
With what his valour did enrich his wit,
His wit set down to make his valour live:
Death makes no conquest of this conqueror,
For now he lives in fame, though not in life.
I'll tell you what, my cousin Buckingham,—
Buck. What, my gracious lord?
Prince. An if I live until I be a man,
I'll win our ancient right in France again,
Or die a soldier, as I liv'd a king.
Glo. [Aside.] Short summers lightly have a
forward spring.

Enter YORK, HASTINGS, and CARDINAL
BOURCHIER.
Buck. Now, in good time, here conies the
Duke of York.
Prince. Richard of York! how fares our lov-
ing brother?
York. Well, my dread lord; so must I call
you now.
Prince. Ay, brother, to our grief, as it is
yours:
Too late he died that might have kept that title,
Which by his death hath lost much majesty.
Glo. How fares our cousin, noble Lord of
York?
York. I thank you, gentle uncle. O, my lord,
You said that idle weeds are fast in growth:
The prince my brother hath outgrown me far.
Glo. He hath, my lord.
York. And therefore is he idle?
Glo. O, my fair cousin, I must not say so.
York. Then he is more beholding to you than I.
Glo. He may command me as my sovereign;
But you have power in me as in a kinsman.
York. I pray you, uncle, give me this dagger.
Glo. My dagger, little cousin? with all my heart.
Prince. A beggar, brother?
York. Of my kind uncle, that I know will give;
And, being but a toy, which is no grief to give.
Glo. A greater gift than that I'll give my
cousin.
York. A greater gift! O, that's the sword to it.
Glo. Ay, gentle cousin, were it light enough.
York. O, then, I see, you'll part but with
light gifts;
In weightier things you'll say a beggar nay.
Glo. It is too weighty for your Grace to wear.
York. I weigh it lightly, were it heavier.
Glo. What! would you have my weapon,
little lord?
York. I would, that I might thank you, as
you call me.
Glo. How?
York. Little.
Prince. My Lord of York will still be cross in
talk.
Uncle, your Grace knows how to bear with him.
York. You mean, to bear me, not to bear
with me:
Uncle, my brother mocks both you and me.
Because that I am little, like an ape,
He thinks that you should bear me on your
shoulders.
Buck. With what a sharp provided wit he
reasons!
To mitigate the scorn he gives his uncle,
He prettily and aptly taunts himself:
So cunning and so young is wonderful.
Glo. My lord, will't please you pass along?
Myself and my good cousin Buckingham
Will to your mother, to entreat of her
To meet you at the Tower and welcome you.
York. What! will you go unto the Tower, my
lord?
Prince. My Lord Protector needs will have
it so.
York. I shall not sleep in quiet at the Tower.
Glo. Why, what would you fear?
York. Marry, my uncle Clarence' angry ghost:
My grandam told me he was murder'd there.
Prince. I fear no uncles dead.
Glo. Nor none that live, I hope.
Prince. An if they live, I hope, I need not
fear.
But come, my lord; and, with a heavy heart,
Thinking on them, go I unto the Tower.
[Sennet. Exeunt all but GLOUCESTER,
BUCKINGHAM, and CATESBY.
Buck. Think you, my lord, this little prating
York
Was not incensed by his subtle mother
To taunt and scorn you thus opprobriously?
Glo. No doubt, no doubt: O! 'tis a parlous
boy;
Bold, quick, ingenious, forward, capable:
He's all the mother's, from the top to toe.
Buck. Well, let them rest. Come hither,
Catesby; thou art sworn
As deeply to effect what we intend
As closely to conceal what we impart.
Thou know'st our reasons urg'd upon the way:
What think'st thou? is it not an easy matter
To make William Lord Hastings of our mind,
For the instalment of this noble duke
In the seat royal of this famous isle?
Cate. He for his father's sake so loves the
prince
That he will not be won to aught against him.
Buck. What think'st thou then of Stanley?
what will he?
Cate. He will do all in all as Hastings doth. I
Buck. Well then, no more but this: go, gentle
Catesby,
And, as it were far off, sound thou Lord Hastings,
How he doth stand affected to our purpose;
And summon him to-morrow to the Tower,
To sit about the coronation.
If thou dost find him tractable to us,
Encourage him, and tell him all our reasons:
If he be leaden, icy-cold, unwilling,
Be thou so too, and so break off the talk,
And give us notice of his inclination;
For we to-morrow hold divided councils,
Wherein thyself shalt highly be employ'd. 180
Glo. Commend me to Lord William: tell him,
Catesby,
His ancient knot of dangerous adversaries
To-morrow are let blood at Pomfret Castle;
And bid my lord, for joy of this good news,
Give Mistress Shore one gentle kiss the more.
Buck. Good Catesby, go, effect this business
soundly.
Cate. My good lords both, with all the heed I can.
Glo. Shall we hear from you, Catesby, ere we
sleep?
Cate. You shall, my lord.
Glo. At Crosby-place, there shall you find us
both. [Exit CATESBY.
Buck. Now, my lord, what shall we do if we
perceive
Lord Hastings will not yield to our complots?
Glo. Chop off his head; something we will
determine:
And, look, when I am king, claim thou of me
The earldom of Hereford, and all the moveables
Whereof the king my brother stood possess'd.
Buck. I'll claim that promise at your Grace's
hand.
Glo. And look to have it yielded with all
kindness.
Come, let us sup betimes, that afterwards
We may digest our complots in some form.
[Exeunt.
< PREVIOUS
Copyright 2000-2005 AbsoluteShakespeare.com. All rights reserved.  Contact Us  Privacy  Awards