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A serpent that will sting thee to the heart.
Boling. O heinous, strong, and bold conspiracy!---O loyal father of a treacherous son!
Thou sheer, immaculate, and silver fountain,
York. So shall my virtue be his vice's bawd;
Boling. What shrill-voic'd suppliant makes this eager cry?
Duch. A woman, and thine aunt, great king; 'tis I. Speak with me, pity me, open the door; A beggar begs, that never begg'd before.
Boling. Our scene is alter'd,-from a serious thing,
And now chang'd to The Beggar and the King.5-
• Thou sheer, immaculate, &c.] Sheer is pellucid, transparent.. digressing son.] deviating from what is right.
The Beggar and the King.] The King and the Beggar seems to have been an interlude or song, well known in the time of our author, who has alluded to it more than once.
Duch. O king, believe not this hard-hearted man; Love, loving not itself, none other can.
York. Thou frantick woman, what dost thou make here?
Shall thy old dugs once more a traitor rear?
Duch. Sweet York, be patient: Hear me, gentle [Kneels.
Boling. Rise up, good aunt.
Not yet, I thee beseech:
For ever will I kneel upon my knees,
And never see day that the happy sees,
Till thou give joy; until thou bid me joy,
By pardoning Rutland, my transgressing boy.
York. Against them both, my true joints bended
[Kneels. Ill may'st thou thrive, if thou grant any grace!
Duch. Pleads he in earnest? look upon his face; His eyes do drop no tears, his prayers are in jest ; His words come from his mouth, ours from our breast:
prays but faintly, and would be denied;
We pray with heart, and soul, and all beside:
His weary joints would gladly rise, I know;
Our knees shall kneel till to the ground they grow: His prayers are full of false hypocrisy;
Ours, of true zeal and deep integrity.
Our prayers do out-pray his; then let them have
I never long'd to hear a word till now;
Duch. Dost thou teach pardon pardon to destroy? Ah, my sour husband, my hard-hearted lord, That set'st the word itself against the word!Speak, pardon, as 'tis current in our land; The chopping French we do not understand. Thine eye begins to speak, set thy tongue there: Or, in thy piteous heart plant thou thine ear; That, hearing how our plaints and prayers do pierce, Pity may move thee, pardon to rehearse.
Boling. Good aunt, stand up.
I do not sue to stand, Pardon is all the suit I have in hand.
Boling. I pardon him, as God shall pardon me. Duch. O happy vantage of a kneeling knee!
Yet am I sick for fear: speak it again;
Twice saying pardon, doth not pardon twain,
I pardon him.
A god on earth thou art.
Boling. But for our trusty brother-in-law,—and the abbot,
With all the rest of that consorted crew,
Destruction straight shall dog them at the heels.Good uncle, help to order several
6 — pardonnez moy.] That is, excuse me, a phrase used when any thing is civilly denied. The whole passage is such as I could well wish away. JOHNSON.
7 But for our trusty brother-in-law,] The brother-in-law, was John Duke of Exeter and Earl of Huntingdon (own brother to King Richard II.) and who had married with the lady Elizabeth, sister of Henry Bolingbroke.
To Oxford, or where'er these traitors are:
Enter EXTON, and a Servant.
Exton. Didst thou not mark the king, what words he spake?
Have I no friend will rid me of this living fear?
Those were his very words. Exton. Have I no friend? quoth he: he spake it twice,
And urg'd it twice together; did he not?
Serv. He did.
Exton. And, speaking it, he wistfully look'd on
As who should say,-I would, thou wert the man That would divorce this terror from my heart; Meaning, the king at Pomfret. Come, let's go; I am the king's friend, and will rid his foe.
Pomfret. The Dungeon of the Castle.
Enter King RICHARD.
K. Rich. I have been studying how I may
This prison, where I live, unto the world:
As thus,-Come, little ones; and then again,-
Thus play I, in one person, many people,
-people this little world;] i. e. his own frame;" the state of man;" which in our author's Julius Cæsar is said to be "like to a little kingdom."
the word itself
Against the word:] By the word, probably, is meant, the holy word.