Actus Tertius. Scena Prima.

Enter the King, with a Page.

King. Goe, call the Earles of Surrey, and of Warwick: But ere they come, bid them ore-reade these Letters, And well consider of them: make good speed. Enter.

How many thousand of my poorest Subiects Are at this howre asleepe? O Sleepe, O gentle Sleepe, Natures soft Nurse, how haue I frighted thee, That thou no more wilt weigh my eye-lids downe, And steepe my Sences in Forgetfulnesse? Why rather (Sleepe) lyest thou in smoakie Cribs, Vpon vneasie Pallads stretching thee, And huisht with bussing Night, flyes to thy slumber, Then in the perfum'd Chambers of the Great? Vnder the Canopies of costly State, And lull'd with sounds of sweetest Melodie? O thou dull God, why lyest thou with the vilde, In loathsome Beds, and leau'st the Kingly Couch, A Watch-case, or a common Larum-Bell? Wilt thou, vpon the high and giddie Mast, Seale vp the Ship-boyes Eyes, and rock his Braines, In Cradle of the rude imperious Surge, And in the visitation of the Windes, Who take the Ruffian Billowes by the top, Curling their monstrous heads, and hanging them With deaff'ning Clamors in the slipp'ry Clouds, That with the hurley, Death it selfe awakes? Canst thou (O partiall Sleepe) giue thy Repose To the wet Sea-Boy, in an houre so rude: And in the calmest, and most stillest Night, With all appliances, and meanes to boote, Deny it to a King? Then happy Lowe, lye downe, Vneasie lyes the Head, that weares a Crowne. Enter Warwicke and Surrey.

War. Many good-morrowes to your Maiestie

King. Is it good-morrow, Lords? War. 'Tis One a Clock, and past

King. Why then good-morrow to you all (my Lords:) Haue you read o're the Letters that I sent you? War. We haue (my Liege.) King. Then you perceiue the Body of our Kingdome, How foule it is: what ranke Diseases grow, And with what danger, neere the Heart of it? War. It is but as a Body, yet distemper'd, Which to his former strength may be restor'd, With good aduice, and little Medicine: My Lord Northumberland will soone be cool'd

King. Oh Heauen, that one might read the Book of Fate, And see the reuolution of the Times Make Mountaines leuell, and the Continent (Wearie of solide firmenesse) melt it selfe Into the Sea: and other Times, to see The beachie Girdle of the Ocean Too wide for Neptunes hippes; how Chances mocks And Changes fill the Cuppe of Alteration With diuers Liquors. 'Tis not tenne yeeres gone, Since Richard, and Northumberland, great friends, Did feast together; and in two yeeres after, Were they at Warres. It is but eight yeeres since, This Percie was the man, neerest my Soule, Who, like a Brother, toyl'd in my Affaires, And layd his Loue and Life vnder my foot: Yea, for my sake, euen to the eyes of Richard Gaue him defiance. But which of you was by (You Cousin Neuil, as I may remember) When Richard, with his Eye, brim-full of Teares, (Then check'd, and rated by Northumberland) Did speake these words (now prou'd a Prophecie:) Northumberland, thou Ladder, by the which My Cousin Bullingbrooke ascends my Throne: (Though then, Heauen knowes, I had no such intent, But that necessitie so bow'd the State, That I and Greatnesse were compell'd to kisse:) The Time shall come (thus did hee follow it) The Time will come, that foule Sinne gathering head, Shall breake into Corruption: so went on, Fore-telling this same Times Condition, And the diuision of our Amitie

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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