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Richard III - Act 3, scene 5
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Navigate this workRichard III - Act 3, scene 5
Act 3, scene 5
Richard and Buckingham excuse the summary execution of Hastings to the Mayor of London by staging an “uprising” that they blame on Hastings’ treachery. Richard then sends Buckingham to persuade Londoners that the crown should be taken from the heirs of Edward IV and given to Richard. Buckingham is to claim that Edward IV himself was illegitimate, and that therefore Richard is the legitimate heir.Enter Richard and Buckingham, in rotten armor,
2022 Come, cousin, canst thou quake and change thy
2024 Murder thy breath in middle of a word,
2025 And then again begin, and stop again,
2026 5 As if thou were distraught and mad with terror?
2027 Tut, I can counterfeit the deep tragedian,
2028 Speak, and look back, and pry on every side,
2029 Tremble and start at wagging of a straw,
2030 Intending deep suspicion. Ghastly looks
2031 10 Are at my service, like enforcèd smiles,
2032 And both are ready, in their offices,
2033 At any time to grace my stratagems.
2034 But what, is Catesby gone?
2035 He is; and see he brings the Mayor along.
p. 169Enter the Mayor and Catesby.
BUCKINGHAM 2036 15Lord Mayor—
RICHARD 2037 Look to the drawbridge there!
BUCKINGHAM 2038 Hark, a drum!
RICHARD 2039 Catesby, o’erlook the walls.
BUCKINGHAM 2040 Lord Mayor, the reason we have sent—
2041 20 Look back! Defend thee! Here are enemies.
2042 God and our ⟨innocence⟩ defend and guard us!
Enter Lovell and Ratcliffe, with Hastings’ head.
2043 Be patient. They are friends, Ratcliffe and Lovell.
2044 Here is the head of that ignoble traitor,
2045 The dangerous and unsuspected Hastings.
2046 25 So dear I loved the man that I must weep.
2047 I took him for the plainest harmless creature
2048 That breathed upon the Earth a Christian;
2049 Made him my book, wherein my soul recorded
2050 The history of all her secret thoughts.
2051 30 So smooth he daubed his vice with show of virtue
2052 That, his apparent open guilt omitted—
2053 I mean his conversation with Shore’s wife—
2054 He lived from all attainder of suspects.
2055 Well, well, he was the covert’st sheltered traitor
2056 35 That ever lived.—
2057 Would you imagine, or almost believe,
2058 Were ’t not that by great preservation
2059 We live to tell it, that the subtle traitor
p. 1712060 This day had plotted, in the council house,
2061 40 To murder me and my good lord of Gloucester?
MAYOR 2062 Had he done so?
2063 What, think you we are Turks or infidels?
2064 Or that we would, against the form of law,
2065 Proceed thus rashly in the villain’s death,
2066 45 But that the extreme peril of the case,
2067 The peace of England, and our persons’ safety
2068 Enforced us to this execution?
2069 Now fair befall you! He deserved his death,
2070 And your good Graces both have well proceeded
2071 50 To warn false traitors from the like attempts.
2072 I never looked for better at his hands
2073 After he once fell in with Mistress Shore.
2074 Yet had we not determined he should die
2075 Until your Lordship came to see his end
2076 55 (Which now the loving haste of these our friends,
2077 Something against our meanings, have prevented),
2078 Because, my lord, I would have had you heard
2079 The traitor speak and timorously confess
2080 The manner and the purpose of his treasons,
2081 60 That you might well have signified the same
2082 Unto the citizens, who haply may
2083 Misconster us in him, and wail his death.
2084 But, my good lord, your Graces’ words shall serve
2085 As well as I had seen and heard him speak;
2086 65 And do not doubt, right noble princes both,
2087 But I’ll acquaint our duteous citizens
2088 With all your just proceedings in this case.
2089 And to that end we wished your Lordship here,
2090 T’ avoid the censures of the carping world.
2091 70 Which since you come too late of our intent,
2092 Yet witness what you hear we did intend.
2093 And so, my good Lord Mayor, we bid farewell.
2094 Go after, after, cousin Buckingham.
2095 The Mayor towards Guildhall hies him in all post.
2096 75 There, at your meetest vantage of the time,
2097 Infer the bastardy of Edward’s children.
2098 Tell them how Edward put to death a citizen
2099 Only for saying he would make his son
2100 Heir to the Crown—meaning indeed his house,
2101 80 Which, by the sign thereof, was termèd so.
2102 Moreover, urge his hateful luxury
2103 And bestial appetite in change of lust,
2104 Which stretched unto their servants, daughters,
2106 85 Even where his raging eye or savage heart,
2107 Without control, lusted to make a prey.
2108 Nay, for a need, thus far come near my person:
2109 Tell them when that my mother went with child
2110 Of that insatiate Edward, noble York
2111 90 My princely father then had wars in France,
2112 And, by true computation of the time,
2113 Found that the issue was not his begot,
2114 Which well appearèd in his lineaments,
2115 Being nothing like the noble duke my father.
2116 95 Yet touch this sparingly, as ’twere far off,
2117 Because, my lord, you know my mother lives.
2118 Doubt not, my lord. I’ll play the orator
2119 As if the golden fee for which I plead
2120 Were for myself. And so, my lord, adieu.
2121 100 If you thrive well, bring them to Baynard’s Castle,
p. 1752122 Where you shall find me well accompanied
2123 With reverend fathers and well-learnèd bishops.
2124 I go; and towards three or four o’clock
2125 Look for the news that the Guildhall affords.
2126 105 Go, Lovell, with all speed to Doctor Shaa.
2127 ⌜To Ratcliffe.⌝ Go thou to Friar Penker. Bid them
2129 Meet me within this hour at Baynard’s Castle.
⌜Ratcliffe and Lovell⌝ exit.
2130 Now will I go to take some privy order
2131 110 To draw the brats of Clarence out of sight,
2132 And to give order that no manner person
2133 Have any time recourse unto the Princes.