Reference > William Shakespeare > The Oxford Shakespeare > 2 King Henry VI.
William Shakespeare (1564–1616).  The Oxford Shakespeare.  1914.
The Second Part of King Henry the Sixth
Act IV. Scene IX.
Kenilworth Castle.
Trumpets sounded.  Enter KING HENRY, QUEEN MARGARET, and SOMERSET, on the terrace.
  K. Hen.  Was ever king that joy’d an earthly throne,
And could command no more content than I?
No sooner was I crept out of my cradle        5
But I was made a king at nine months old:
Was never subject long’d to be a king
As I do long and wish to be a subject.
  Buck.  Health, and glad tidings, to your majesty!        10
  K. Hen.  Why, Buckingham, is the traitor Cade surpris’d?
Or is he but retir’d to make him strong?
Enter, below, a number of CADE’S followers, with halters about their necks.
  Clif.  He’s fled, my lord, and all his powers do yield;
And humbly thus, with halters on their necks,        15
Expect your highness’ doom, of life, or death.
  K. Hen.  Then, heaven, set ope thy everlasting gates,
To entertain my vows of thanks and praise!
Soldiers, this day have you redeem’d your lives,
And show’d how well you love your prince and country:        20
Continue still in this so good a mind,
And Henry, though he be infortunate,
Assure yourselves, will never be unkind:
And so, with thanks and pardon to you all,
I do dismiss you to your several countries.        25
  All.  God save the king! God save the king!
Enter a Messenger.
  Mess.  Please it your Grace to be advertised,
The Duke of York is newly come from Ireland;
And with a puissant and a mighty power        30
Of Gallowglasses, and stout kerns,
Is marching hitherward in proud array;
And still proclaimeth, as he comes along,
His arms are only to remove from thee
The Duke of Somerset, whom he terms a traitor.        35
  K. Hen.  Thus stands my state, ’twixt Cade and York distress’d;
Like to a ship, that, having scap’d a tempest,
Is straightway calm’d, and boarded with a pirate.
But now is Cade driven back, his men dispers’d;
And now is York in arms to second him.        40
I pray thee, Buckingham, go and meet him,
And ask him what’s the reason of these arms.
Tell him I’ll send Duke Edmund to the Tower;
And, Somerset, we will commit thee thither,
Until his army be dismiss’d from him.        45
  Som.  My lord,
I’ll yield myself to prison willingly,
Or unto death, to do my country good.
  K. Hen.  In any case, be not too rough in terms;
For he is fierce and cannot brook hard language.        50
  Buck.  I will, my lord; and doubt not so to deal
As all things shall redound unto your good.
  K. Hen.  Come, wife, let’s in, and learn to govern better;
For yet may England curse my wretched reign.  [Exeunt.

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