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Richard III - Act 5, scene 3
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Navigate this workRichard III - Act 5, scene 3
Act 5, scene 3
Richard and Richmond and their supporters prepare for battle. Asleep, Richard and Richmond are each visited by the ghosts of those whom Richard has killed or has had killed; the ghosts curse Richard and cheer Richmond. In the morning Richmond and Richard address their troops before battle.Enter King Richard, in arms, with Norfolk, Ratcliffe, and
the Earl of Surrey, ⌜with Soldiers.⌝
3339 Here pitch our tent, even here in Bosworth field.
⌜Soldiers begin to pitch the tent.⌝
3340 My lord of Surrey, why look you so sad?
3341 My heart is ten times lighter than my looks.
3342 My lord of Norfolk—
NORFOLK 3343 5 Here, most gracious liege.
3344 Norfolk, we must have knocks, ha, must we not?
3345 We must both give and take, my loving lord.
3346 Up with my tent!—Here will I lie tonight.
p. 2733347 But where tomorrow? Well, all’s one for that.
3348 10 Who hath descried the number of the traitors?
3349 Six or seven thousand is their utmost power.
3350 Why, our battalia trebles that account.
3351 Besides, the King’s name is a tower of strength
3352 Which they upon the adverse faction want.—
3353 15 Up with the tent!—Come, noble gentlemen,
3354 Let us survey the vantage of the ground.
3355 Call for some men of sound direction;
3356 Let’s lack no discipline, make no delay,
3357 For, lords, tomorrow is a busy day.
⌜The tent now in place,⌝ they exit.
Enter Richmond, Sir William Brandon, Oxford,
Dorset, ⌜Herbert, Blunt, and others who set up
3358 20 The weary sun hath made a golden set,
3359 And by the bright ⟨track⟩ of his fiery car
3360 Gives token of a goodly day tomorrow.—
3361 Sir William Brandon, you shall bear my standard.—
3362 Give me some ink and paper in my tent;
3363 25 I’ll draw the form and model of our battle,
3364 Limit each leader to his several charge,
3365 And part in just proportion our small power.—
3366 My Lord of Oxford, you, Sir William Brandon,
3367 And ⌜you,⌝ Sir Walter Herbert, stay with me.
3368 30 The Earl of Pembroke keeps his regiment.—
3369 Good Captain Blunt, bear my goodnight to him,
3370 And by the second hour in the morning
3371 Desire the Earl to see me in my tent.
3372 Yet one thing more, good captain, do for me.
3373 35 Where is Lord Stanley quartered, do you know?
3374 Unless I have mista’en his colors much,
3375 Which well I am assured I have not done,
3376 His regiment lies half a mile, at least,
3377 South from the mighty power of the King.
3378 40 If without peril it be possible,
3379 Sweet Blunt, make some good means to speak with
3381 And give him from me this most needful note.
⌜He gives a paper.⌝
3382 Upon my life, my lord, I’ll undertake it,
3383 45 And so God give you quiet rest tonight.
3384 Good night, good Captain Blunt.⌜Blunt exits.⌝
3385 Come, gentlemen,
3386 Let us consult upon tomorrow’s business.
3387 Into my tent. The dew is raw and cold.
⌜Richmond, Brandon, Dorset, Herbert, and Oxford⌝
withdraw into the tent. ⌜The others exit.⌝
Enter ⌜to his tent⌝ Richard, Ratcliffe, Norfolk, and
Catesby, ⌜with Soldiers.⌝
RICHARD 3388 50What is ’t o’clock?
3389 It’s suppertime, my lord. It’s nine o’clock.
3390 I will not sup tonight. Give me some ink and paper.
3391 What, is my beaver easier than it was,
3392 And all my armor laid into my tent?
3393 55 It is, my liege, and all things are in readiness.
3394 Good Norfolk, hie thee to thy charge.
3395 Use careful watch. Choose trusty [sentinels.]
p. 277NORFOLK 3396 I go, my lord.
3397 Stir with the lark tomorrow, gentle Norfolk.
NORFOLK 3398 60I warrant you, my lord.[He exits.]
RICHARD 3399 Catesby.
⌜CATESBY⌝ 3400 My lord.
RICHARD 3401 Send out a pursuivant-at-arms
3402 To Stanley’s regiment. Bid him bring his power
3403 65 Before sunrising, lest his son George fall
3404 Into the blind cave of eternal night.⌜Catesby exits.⌝
3405 ⌜To Soldiers.⌝ Fill me a bowl of wine. Give me a
3407 Saddle white Surrey for the field tomorrow.
3408 70 Look that my staves be sound and not too heavy.—
RATCLIFFE 3410 My lord.
3411 Sawst thou the melancholy Lord Northumberland?
3412 Thomas the Earl of Surrey and himself,
3413 75 Much about cockshut time, from troop to troop
3414 Went through the army cheering up the soldiers.
3415 So, I am satisfied. Give me a bowl of wine.
3416 I have not that alacrity of spirit
3417 Nor cheer of mind that I was wont to have.
⌜Wine is brought.⌝
3418 80 Set it down. Is ink and paper ready?
3419 It is, my lord.
RICHARD 3420 Bid my guard watch. Leave me.
3421 Ratcliffe, about the mid of night come to my tent
3422 And help to arm me. Leave me, I say.
Ratcliffe exits. ⌜Richard sleeps in his tent,
which is guarded by Soldiers.⌝
p. 279Enter ⌜Stanley, Earl of⌝ Derby to Richmond in his tent.
3423 85 Fortune and victory sit on thy helm!
3424 All comfort that the dark night can afford
3425 Be to thy person, noble father-in-law.
3426 Tell me, how fares our loving mother?
3427 I, by attorney, bless thee from thy mother,
3428 90 Who prays continually for Richmond’s good.
3429 So much for that. The silent hours steal on,
3430 And flaky darkness breaks within the east.
3431 In brief, for so the season bids us be,
3432 Prepare thy battle early in the morning,
3433 95 And put thy fortune to the arbitrament
3434 Of bloody strokes and mortal-staring war.
3435 I, as I may—that which I would I cannot—
3436 With best advantage will deceive the time
3437 And aid thee in this doubtful shock of arms.
3438 100 But on thy side I may not be too forward,
3439 Lest, being seen, thy brother, tender George,
3440 Be executed in his father’s sight.
3441 Farewell. The leisure and the fearful time
3442 Cuts off the ceremonious vows of love
3443 105 And ample interchange of sweet discourse,
3444 Which so-long-sundered friends should dwell upon.
3445 God give us leisure for these rites of love!
3446 Once more, adieu. Be valiant and speed well.
3447 Good lords, conduct him to his regiment.
3448 110 I’ll strive with troubled thoughts to take a nap,
3449 Lest leaden slumber peise me down tomorrow
3450 When I should mount with wings of victory.
3451 Once more, good night, kind lords and gentlemen.
p. 281⌜All but Richmond leave his tent and⌝ exit.
3452 O Thou, whose captain I account myself,
3453 115 Look on my forces with a gracious eye.
3454 Put in their hands Thy bruising irons of wrath,
3455 That they may crush down with a heavy fall
3456 The usurping helmets of our adversaries.
3457 Make us Thy ministers of chastisement,
3458 120 That we may praise Thee in the victory.
3459 To Thee I do commend my watchful soul,
3460 [Ere] I let fall the windows of mine eyes.
3461 Sleeping and waking, O, defend me still![Sleeps.]
Enter the Ghost of young Prince Edward, son [to] Harry
GHOST ⌜OF EDWARD,⌝ (to Richard)
3462 Let me sit heavy on thy soul tomorrow.
3463 125 Think how thou ⌜stabbed’st⌝ me in my prime of
3465 At Tewkesbury. Despair therefore, and die!
3466 (To Richmond.) Be cheerful, Richmond, for the
3467 wrongèd souls
3468 130 Of butchered princes fight in thy behalf.
3469 King Henry’s issue, Richmond, comforts thee.
Enter the Ghost of Henry the Sixth.
GHOST ⌜OF HENRY,⌝ (to Richard)
3470 When I was mortal, my anointed body
3471 By thee was punchèd full of deadly holes.
3472 Think on the Tower and me. Despair and die!
3473 135 Harry the Sixth bids thee despair and die.
3474 (To Richmond.) Virtuous and holy, be thou conqueror.
3475 Harry, that prophesied thou shouldst be king,
3476 Doth comfort thee in thy sleep. Live and flourish.
p. 283Enter the Ghost of Clarence.
GHOST ⌜OF CLARENCE, (to Richard)⌝
3477 Let me sit heavy in thy soul tomorrow,
3478 140 I, that was washed to death with fulsome wine,
3479 Poor Clarence, by thy guile betrayed to death.
3480 Tomorrow in the battle think on me,
3481 And fall thy edgeless sword. Despair and die!
3482 (To Richmond.) Thou offspring of the house of
3483 145 Lancaster,
3484 The wrongèd heirs of York do pray for thee.
3485 Good angels guard thy battle. Live and flourish.
Enter the Ghosts of Rivers, Grey, [and] Vaughan.
⌜GHOST OF RIVERS, (to Richard)⌝
3486 Let me sit heavy in thy soul tomorrow,
3487 Rivers, that died at Pomfret. Despair and die!
⌜GHOST OF⌝ GREY, ⌜(to Richard)⌝
3488 150 Think upon Grey, and let thy soul despair!
⌜GHOST OF⌝ VAUGHAN, ⌜(to Richard)⌝
3489 Think upon Vaughan, and with guilty fear
3490 Let fall thy lance. Despair and die!
ALL, (to Richmond)
3491 Awake, and think our wrongs in Richard’s bosom
3492 [Will] conquer him. Awake, and win the day.
Enter the Ghosts of the two young Princes.
⌜GHOSTS OF PRINCES,⌝ (to Richard)
3493 155 Dream on thy cousins smothered in the Tower.
3494 Let us be lead within thy bosom, Richard,
3495 And weigh thee down to ruin, shame, and death.
3496 Thy nephews’ souls bid thee despair and die.
3497 (To Richmond.) Sleep, Richmond, sleep in peace
3498 160 and wake in joy.
p. 2853499 Good angels guard thee from the boar’s annoy.
3500 Live, and beget a happy race of kings.
3501 Edward’s unhappy sons do bid thee flourish.
Enter the Ghost of Hastings.
GHOST ⌜OF HASTINGS, (to Richard)⌝
3502 Bloody and guilty, guiltily awake,
3503 165 And in a bloody battle end thy days.
3504 Think on Lord Hastings. Despair and die!
3505 (To Richmond.) Quiet, untroubled soul, awake, awake.
3506 Arm, fight, and conquer for fair England’s sake.
Enter the Ghost of Lady Anne his wife.
⌜GHOST OF ANNE, (to Richard)⌝
3507 Richard, thy wife, that wretched Anne thy wife,
3508 170 That never slept a quiet hour with thee,
3509 Now fills thy sleep with perturbations.
3510 Tomorrow, in the battle, think on me,
3511 And fall thy edgeless sword. Despair and die!
3512 (To Richmond.) Thou quiet soul, sleep thou a quiet
3513 175 sleep.
3514 Dream of success and happy victory.
3515 Thy adversary’s wife doth pray for thee.⌜She exits.⌝
Enter the Ghost of Buckingham.
⌜GHOST OF BUCKINGHAM, (to Richard)⌝
3516 The first was I that helped thee to the crown;
3517 The last was I that felt thy tyranny.
3518 180 O, in the battle think on Buckingham,
3519 And die in terror of thy guiltiness.
3520 Dream on, dream on, of bloody deeds and death.
3521 Fainting, despair; despairing, yield thy breath.
3522 (To Richmond.) I died for hope ere I could lend
3523 185 thee aid,
p. 2873524 But cheer thy heart, and be thou not dismayed.
3525 God and good angels fight on Richmond’s side,
3526 And Richard [fall] in height of all his pride.
Richard starteth up out of a dream.
3527 Give me another horse! Bind up my wounds!
3528 190 Have mercy, Jesu!—Soft, I did but dream.
3529 O coward conscience, how dost thou afflict me!
3530 The lights burn blue; it is now dead midnight.
3531 Cold fearful drops stand on my trembling flesh.
3532 What do I fear? Myself? There’s none else by.
3533 195 Richard loves Richard, that is, I [am] I.
3534 Is there a murderer here? No. Yes, I am.
3535 Then fly! What, from myself? Great reason why:
3536 Lest I revenge. What, myself upon myself?
3537 Alack, I love myself. Wherefore? For any good
3538 200 That I myself have done unto myself?
3539 O, no. Alas, I rather hate myself
3540 For hateful deeds committed by myself.
3541 I am a villain. Yet I lie; I am not.
3542 Fool, of thyself speak well. Fool, do not flatter.
3543 205 My conscience hath a thousand several tongues,
3544 And every tongue brings in a several tale,
3545 And every tale condemns me for a villain.
3546 Perjury, perjury, in the highest degree;
3547 Murder, stern murder, in the direst degree;
3548 210 All several sins, all used in each degree,
3549 Throng to the bar, crying all “Guilty, guilty!”
3550 I shall despair. There is no creature loves me,
3551 And if I die no soul will pity me.
3552 And wherefore should they, since that I myself
3553 215 Find in myself no pity to myself?
3554 Methought the souls of all that I had murdered
3555 Came to my tent, and every one did threat
3556 Tomorrow’s vengeance on the head of Richard.
p. 289Enter Ratcliffe.
RATCLIFFE 3557 My lord.
RICHARD 3558 220Zounds, who is there?
3559 Ratcliffe, my lord, ’tis I. The early village cock
3560 Hath twice done salutation to the morn.
3561 Your friends are up and buckle on their armor.
3562 O Ratcliffe, I have dreamed a fearful dream!
3563 225 What think’st thou, will our friends prove all true?
3564 No doubt, my lord.
RICHARD 3565 O Ratcliffe, I fear, I fear.
3566 Nay, good my lord, be not afraid of shadows.
3567 By the apostle Paul, shadows tonight
3568 230 Have struck more terror to the soul of Richard
3569 Than can the substance of ten thousand soldiers
3570 Armed in proof and led by shallow Richmond.
3571 ’Tis not yet near day. Come, go with me.
3572 Under our tents I’ll play the eavesdropper
3573 235 To see if any mean to shrink from me.
[Richard and Ratcliffe] exit.
Enter the Lords to Richmond, [in his tent.]
LORDS 3574 Good morrow, Richmond.
3575 Cry mercy, lords and watchful gentlemen,
3576 That you have ta’en a tardy sluggard here.
A LORD 3577 How have you slept, my lord?
3578 240 The sweetest sleep and fairest-boding dreams
3579 That ever entered in a drowsy head
3580 Have I since your departure had, my lords.
p. 2913581 Methought their souls whose bodies Richard
3583 245 Came to my tent and cried on victory.
3584 I promise you, my soul is very jocund
3585 In the remembrance of so fair a dream.
3586 How far into the morning is it, lords?
A LORD 3587 Upon the stroke of four.
RICHMOND, ⌜leaving the tent⌝
3588 250 Why, then ’tis time to arm and give direction.
His oration to his soldiers.
3589 More than I have said, loving countrymen,
3590 The leisure and enforcement of the time
3591 Forbids to dwell upon. Yet remember this:
3592 God, and our good cause, fight upon our side.
3593 255 The prayers of holy saints and wrongèd souls,
3594 Like high-reared bulwarks, stand before our faces.
3595 Richard except, those whom we fight against
3596 Had rather have us win than him they follow.
3597 For what is he they follow? Truly, gentlemen,
3598 260 A bloody tyrant and a homicide;
3599 One raised in blood, and one in blood established;
3600 One that made means to come by what he hath,
3601 And slaughtered those that were the means to help
3603 265 A base foul stone, made precious by the foil
3604 Of England’s chair, where he is falsely set;
3605 One that hath ever been God’s enemy.
3606 Then if you fight against God’s enemy,
3607 God will, in justice, ward you as his soldiers.
3608 270 If you do sweat to put a tyrant down,
3609 You sleep in peace, the tyrant being slain.
3610 If you do fight against your country’s foes,
3611 Your country’s fat shall pay your pains the hire.
3612 If you do fight in safeguard of your wives,
3613 275 Your wives shall welcome home the conquerors.
p. 2933614 If you do free your children from the sword,
3615 Your children’s children quits it in your age.
3616 Then, in the name of God and all these rights,
3617 Advance your standards; draw your willing swords.
3618 280 For me, the ransom of my bold attempt
3619 Shall be this cold corpse on the Earth’s cold face,
3620 But if I thrive, the gain of my attempt
3621 The least of you shall share his part thereof.
3622 Sound drums and trumpets boldly and cheerfully.
3623 285 God, and Saint George, Richmond, and victory!
Enter King Richard, Ratcliffe, ⌜and Soldiers.⌝
3624 What said Northumberland as touching Richmond?
3625 That he was never trainèd up in arms.
3626 He said the truth. And what said Surrey then?
3627 He smiled and said “The better for our purpose.”
3628 290 He was in the right, and so indeed it is.
The clock striketh.
3629 Tell the clock there. Give me a calendar.
⌜He looks in an almanac.⌝
3630 Who saw the sun today?
RATCLIFFE 3631 Not I, my lord.
3632 Then he disdains to shine, for by the book
3633 295 He should have braved the east an hour ago.
3634 A black day will it be to somebody.
3636 My lord.
RICHARD 3637 The sun will [not] be seen today.
p. 2953638 300 The sky doth frown and lour upon our army.
3639 I would these dewy tears were from the ground.
3640 Not shine today? Why, what is that to me
3641 More than to Richmond, for the selfsame heaven
3642 That frowns on me looks sadly upon him.
3643 305 Arm, arm, my lord. The foe vaunts in the field.
3644 Come, bustle, bustle. Caparison my horse.—
3645 Call up Lord Stanley; bid him bring his power.—
3646 I will lead forth my soldiers to the plain,
3647 And thus my battle shall be orderèd:
3648 310 My foreward shall be drawn out all in length,
3649 Consisting equally of horse and foot;
3650 Our archers shall be placèd in the midst.
3651 John Duke of Norfolk, Thomas Earl of Surrey,
3652 Shall have the leading of this foot and horse.
3653 315 They thus directed, we will follow
3654 In the main battle, whose puissance on either side
3655 Shall be well wingèd with our chiefest horse.
3656 This, and Saint George to [boot]!—What think’st
3657 thou, Norfolk?
3658 320 A good direction, warlike sovereign.
He sheweth him a paper.
3659 This found I on my tent this morning.
3660 Jockey of Norfolk, be not so bold.
3661 For Dickon thy master is bought and sold.
3662 A thing devisèd by the enemy.—
3663 325 Go, gentlemen, every man unto his charge.
3664 Let not our babbling dreams affright our souls.
3665 Conscience is but a word that cowards use,
3666 Devised at first to keep the strong in awe.
p. 2973667 Our strong arms be our conscience, swords our law.
3668 330 March on. Join bravely. Let us to it pell mell,
3669 If not to heaven, then hand in hand to hell.
His oration to his army.
3670 What shall I say more than I have inferred?
3671 Remember whom you are to cope withal,
3672 A sort of vagabonds, rascals, and runaways,
3673 335 A scum of Bretons and base lackey peasants,
3674 Whom their o’ercloyèd country vomits forth
3675 To desperate adventures and assured destruction.
3676 You sleeping safe, they bring to you unrest;
3677 You having lands and blessed with beauteous wives,
3678 340 They would restrain the one, distain the other.
3679 And who doth lead them but a paltry fellow,
3680 Long kept in Brittany at our mother’s cost,
3681 A milksop, one that never in his life
3682 Felt so much cold as overshoes in snow?
3683 345 Let’s whip these stragglers o’er the seas again,
3684 Lash hence these overweening rags of France,
3685 These famished beggars weary of their lives,
3686 Who, but for dreaming on this fond exploit,
3687 For want of means, poor rats, had hanged
3688 350 themselves.
3689 If we be conquered, let men conquer us,
3690 And not these bastard Bretons, whom our fathers
3691 Have in their own land beaten, bobbed, and
3693 355 And in record left them the heirs of shame.
3694 Shall these enjoy our lands, lie with our wives,
3695 Ravish our daughters?[Drum afar off.]
3696 Hark, I hear their drum.
3697 Fight, gentlemen of England.—Fight, bold
3698 360 yeomen.—
3699 Draw, archers; draw your arrows to the head.—
p. 2993700 Spur your proud horses hard, and ride in blood.
3701 Amaze the welkin with your broken staves.—
[Enter a Messenger.]
3702 What says Lord Stanley? Will he bring his power?
MESSENGER 3703 365My lord, he doth deny to come.
RICHARD 3704 Off with his son George’s head!
3705 My lord, the enemy is past the marsh.
3706 After the battle let George Stanley die.
3707 A thousand hearts are great within my bosom.
3708 370 Advance our standards. Set upon our foes.
3709 Our ancient word of courage, fair Saint George,
3710 Inspire us with the spleen of fiery dragons.
3711 Upon them! Victory sits on our helms.