Sidebilder
PDF
ePub

Wol. What should this mean?
What sudden anger's this? how have I reap'd it?
He parted frowning from me, as if ruin
Leap'd from his eyes: so looks the chafed lion
Upon the daring huntsman, that has gall'd him;
Then makes him nothing. I must read this paper;
I fear, the story of his anger.-'Tis so;
This paper has undone me :-'Tis the account
Of all that world of wealth I have drawn together
For mine own ends; indeed, to gain the popedom,
And fee my friends in Rome. O negligence,
Fit for a fool to fall by! What cross devil
Made me put this main secret in the packet
I sent the king? Is there no way to cure this?
No new device to beat this from his brains?
I know, 'twill stir him strongly; yet I know
A way, if it take right; in spite of fortune,
Will bring me off again. What's this-To the

Pope?

The letter, as I live, with all the business
I writ to his holiness. Nay then, farewell!
I have touched the highest point of all my great-
And, from that full meridian of my glory, [ness;
I haste now to my setting: I shall fall
Like a bright exhalation in the evening,
And no man see me more.

Re-enter the Dukes of Norfolk and Suffolk, the
Earl of Surrey, and the Lord Chamberlain.
Nor. Hear the king's pleasure, cardinal; who
commands you

To render up the great seal presently
Into our hands; and to confine yourself
To Asher-house, my lord of Winchester's
Till you hear further from his highness.

Wol. Stay,

Bade me enjoy it, with the place and honours,
During my life; and to confirm his goodness,
Tied it by letters patent: Now, who'll take it?
Surrey. The king, that gave it.
Wol. It must be himself, then.

Surrey. Thou art a proud traitor, priest.
Wel. Proud lord, thou liest,
Within these forty hours Surrey durst better
Have burnt that tongue, than said so.

Surrey. Thy ambition,

Thou scarlet sin, robb'd this bewailing land
Of noble Buckingham, my father-in-law:

[blocks in formation]

Where's your commission, lords? words cannot
Authority so weighty.

[carry

"

Suff. Who dare cross them?
Bearing the king's will from his mouth expressly
Wol. Till I find more than will, or words, to
do it,

(I mean, your malice,) know, officious lords,
I dare, and must deny it. Now I feel
Of what coarse metal ye are moulded,-envy.
How eagerly ye follow my disgraces,
As if it fed ye! and how sleek and wanton
Ye appear in every thing may bring my ruin!
Follow your envious courses, men of malice;
You have Christian warrant for them, and, no
doubt,

In time will find their fit rewards. That scal,
You ask with such a violence, the king
(Mine, and your master,) with his own hand When the king knows my truth.

And spotless, shall mine innocence arise,

gave me:

Surrey. This cannot save you:

I thank my memory, I yet remember
Some of these articles; and out they shall.
Now, if you can blush, and cry guilty, cardinal,
You'll show a little honesty.

Wol. Speak on, sir:

I dare your worst objections: if I blush,
It is, to see a nobleman want manners.

Of gleaning all the land's wealth into one,
Into your own hands, cardinal, by extortion;
The goodness of your intercepted packets,
You writ to the pope, against the king; your
goodness,

Since you provoke me, shall be most notorious.—
My lord of Norfolk,-
‚—as you are truly noble,
As you respect the common good, the state
Of our despised nobility, our issues,
Who, if he live, will scarce be gentlemen,-
Produce the grand sum of his sins, the articles
Collected from his life :-I'll startle you
Worse than the sacring bell, when the brown wench
Lay kissing in your arms, lord cardinal.

Wol. How much, methinks, I could despise

this man,

But that I am bound in charity against it!
Nor. Those articles, my lord, are in the king't
But, thus much, they are foul ones. [hand:
Wol. So much fairer,

Surrey. I'd rather want those, than my head.
Have at you.
[ledge,
First, that without the king's assent, or know.
You wrought to be a legate; by which power
You maim'd the jurisdiction of all bishops

[clse

Nor. Then, that, in all you writ to Rome, or | And when he falls, he falls like Lucifer,
To foreign princes, Ego et Rex meus
Never to hope again.-
Was still inscrib'd; in which you brought the king
To be your servant.

Suff. Then, that, without the knowledge
Either of king or council, when you went
Ambassador to the emperor, you made bold
To carry into Flanders the great seal.

Surrey. Item, you sent a large commission
To Gregory de Cassalis, to conclude,
Without the king's will, or the state's allowance,
A league between his highness and Ferrara.

Suff. That, out of mere ambition, you have caus'd
Your holy hat to be stamp'd on the king's coin.
Surrey. Then, that you have sent innumerable
substance
[science,
(By what means got, I leave to your own con-
To furnish Rome, and to prepare the ways
You have for dignities; to the mere undoing
Of all the kingdom. Many more there are;
Which, since they are of you, and odious,
I will not taint my mouth with

Cham. O my lord,

Press not a falling man too far; 'tis virtue :
His faults lie open to the laws; let them,

Surrey. I forgive him.

Suff. Lord cardinal, the king's further plea-
sure is,

Because all those things, you have done of late
By your power legatine within this kingdom,
Fall into the compass of a pramunire,—
That therefore such a writ be sued against you;
To forfeit all your goods, lands, tenements,
Chattels, and whatsoever, and to be
Out of the king's protection :-This is my charge.
Nor. And so we'll leave you to your medita-
tions

How to live better. For your stubborn answer,
About the giving back the great seal to us,
The king shall know it, and, no doubt, shall
thank you.

So fare you well, my little good lord cardinal.
[exeunt all but Wolsey.
Wol. So farewell to the little good you bear me.
Farewell, a long farewell, to all my greatness!
This is the state of man: To-day he puts forth
The tender leaves of hope, to-morrow blossoms,
And bears his blushing honours thick upon him:
The third day, comes a frost, a killing frost;
And,-when he thinks, good easy man, full surely
His greatness is a ripening,-nips his root,
And then he falls, as I do. I have ventur'd,
Like little wanton boys that swim on bladders,
This many summers in a sea of glory;
But far beyond my depth: my high-blown pride
At length broke under me; and now has left me,
Weary, and old with service, to the mercy

Of a rude stream, that must for ever hide me.
Vain pomp, and glory of this world,
hate ye;
I feel my heart new open'd: O how wretched
Is that poor man, that hangs on princes' favours!
There is, betwixt that smile we would aspire to,
That sweet aspéct of princes, and their ruin,
More pange and fears than wars or women have;

Enter Cromwell, amazedly.
Why, how now, Cromwell?

Crom. I have no power to speak, sir.
Wol. What, amaz'd

At my misfortunes? can thy spirit wonder,
A great man should decline? Nay, an you weep
I am fallen indeed.

Crom. How does your grace?
Wol. Why, well;

me,

Never so truly happy, my good Cromwell.
I know myself now; and I feel within me
A peace above all earthly dignities,
A still and quiet conscience. The king has cur'd
[shoulders,
I humbly thank his grace; and from these
These ruin'd pillars, out of pity, taken
A load would sink a navy, too much honour:
O, 'tis a burden, Cromwell, 'tis a burden,
Too heavy for a man that hopes for heaven.
Crom. I am glad, your grace has made that
right use of it.

Wol. I hope, I have: I am able now, methinks, (Out of a fortitude of soul I feel,)

Not you, correct them. My heart weeps to see him To endure more miseries, and greater far,
So little of his great self,

Than my weak-hearted enemies dare offer.
What news abroad?

[blocks in formation]

Crom. O my lord,

Must I then leave you? Must I needs forego
So good, so noble, and so true a master?
Bear witness, all that have not hearts of iron,
With what a sorrow Cromwell leaves his lord.-
The king shall have my service; but my prayers
For ever, and for ever, shall be yours.

Wol. Cromwell, I did not think to shed a tear In all my miseries; but thou hast, forc'd me, Out of thy honest truth, to play the woman. Let's dry our eyes; and thus far hear me, CromAnd,-when I am forgotten, as I shall be; [well; And sleep in dull cold marble, where no mention Of me more must be heard of,—say, I taught thee; Say, Wolsey, that once trod the ways of glory, And sounded all the depths and shoals of honour, Found thee a way, out of his wreck, to rise in ; A sure and safe one, though thy master miss'd it. Mark but my fall, and that, that ruin'd me. Cromwell, I charge thee, fling away ambition; By that sin fell the angels; how can man then,

ACT

SCENE I. ▲ STREET IN WESTMINSTER.

Enter two Gentlemen, meeting.

1 Gent. You are well met once again.

2 Gent. And so are you.

[behold

1 Gent. You come to take your stand here, and The lady Anne pass from her coronation?

2 Gent. 'Tis all my business. At our last encounter,

The duke of Buckingham came from his trial.

1 Gent. 'Tis very true: but that time offer'd This, general joy. [sorrow;

2 Gent. 'Tis well: the citizens,

I am sure, have shown at full their royal minds: As, let them have their rights, they are ever forIn celebration of this day, with shows, [ward Pageants, and sights of honour.

1 Gent. Never greater,

Nor, I'll assure you, better taken, sir.

2 Gent. May I be bold to ask what that conThat paper in your hand?

[tains,

1 Gent. Yes; 'tis the list

Of those, that claim their offices this day,
By custom of the coronation.

The duke of Suffolk is the first, and claims
To be high steward; next, the duke of Norfolk,
He to be earl marshall; you may read the rest.
2 Gent. I thank you, sir: bad I not known
those customs,

I should have been beholden to your paper.
But, I beseech you, what's become of Katharine,
The princess dowager? how goes her business?

1 Gent. That I can tell you too. The archbishop
Of Canterbury, accompanied with other
Learned and reverend fathers of his order,
Held a late court at Dunstable, six miles off
From Ampthill, where the princess lay; to which
She oft was cited by them, but appear'd not:
And, to be short, for not appearance, and
The king's late scruple, by the main assent
Of all these learned men she was divorc'd,
And the late marriage made of none effect:
Since which, she was remov'd to Kimbolton,
Where she remains now sick.

[blocks in formation]

THE ORDER OF THE PROCESSION.

A lively flourish of trumpets; then enter,—

1. Two Judges.-2. Lord Chancellor, with the purse and mace before him.-3. Choristers singing; music.-4. Mayor of London, bearing the mace. Then Garter, in his coat of arms, and on his head, a gilt copper crown5. Marquis of Dorset, bearing a sceptre of gold, on his head a demi-coronal of gold. With him, the Earl of Surrey, bearing the rod of silver with the dove, crowned with an Earl's coronet. Collars of SS.-6. Duke of Suffolk, in his robe of estate, his coronet on his head, bearing a long white wand, as high steward. With him, the Duke of Norfolk, with the rod of marshallship, a coronet on his head. Collars of SS.-7. A canopy borne by four of the Cinque-ports; under it, the Queen in her robe; in her hair richly adorned with pearl, crowned. On each side of her, the Bishops of London and Win. chester.-8. The old Duchess of Norfolk, in a coronal of gold, wrought with flowers, bearing the Queen's train.9. Certain Ladies or Countesses, with plain circlets of gold, without flowers.

2 Gent. A royal train, believe me.-These I Who's that, that bears the sceptre ?

[know:

1 Gent. Marquis Dorset:

And that the earl of Surrey,, with the rod.

2 Gent. A bold brave gentleman: and that The duke of Suffolk.

[should be

1 Gent. 'Tis the same; high steward. 2 Gent. And that my lord of Norfolk? 1 Gent. Yes.

2 Gent, Heaven bless thee!

[looking on the Queen. Thou hast the sweetest face I ever look'd on.Sir, as I have a soul, she is an angel; Our king has all the Indies in his arms, And more, and richer, when he strains that lady: I cannot blame his conscience.

1 Gent. They, that bear

The cloth of honour over her, are four barons Of the Cinque-ports. [are near her.

2 Gent. Those men are happy; and so are all, I take it, she that carries up the train, Is that old noble lady, duchess of Norfolk.

1 Gent. It is; and all the rest are countessen. 2 Gent. Their coronets say so. These are stare, And, sometimes, falling ones. [indead:

1 Gent. No more of that.

[exit procession, with a great flourish of trumpets.
Enter a third Gentleman.
God save you, sir! Where have you been broil-
ing?
[a finger
3 Gent. Among the crow'd i'the abbey; where
Could not be wedg'd in more; and I am stifled
With the mere rankness of their joy.

2 Gent. You saw

The ceremony?

[ocr errors]

3 Gent. That I did.

1 Gent. How was it?

3 Gent. Well worth the seeing.

2 Gent. Good sir, speak it to us.

3 Gent. As well as I am able. The rich stream Of lords, and ladies, having brought the queen To a prepar'd place in the choir, fell off

A distance from her, while her grace sat down
To rest awhile, some half an hour, or so,
In a rich chair of state, opposing freely
The beauty of her person to the people.
Believe me, sir, she is the goodliest woman
That ever lay by man: which, when the people
Had the full view of, such a noise arose
As the shrouds make at sea in a stiff tempest,
As loud, and to as many tunes: hats, cloaks
(Doublets, I think,) flew up; and had their faces
Been loose, this day they had been lost. Such joy
I never saw before. Great-bellied women,
That had not half a week to go, like rams
In the old time of war, would shake the press,
And make them reel before them. No man living
Could say, This is my wife, there; all were woven
So strangely in one piece.

2 Gent. But, pray, what follow'd?

3 Gent. At length her grace arose, and with
modest paces

[like,
Came to the altar; where she kneel'd, and, saint-
Cast her fair eyes to heaven, and pray'd devoutly.
Then rose again, and bow'd her to the people:
When by the archbishop of Canterbury
She had all the royal makings of a queen;
As holy oil, Edward Confessor's crown,

[Leicester,
Grif. At last, with easy roads, he came to
Lodg'd in the abbey; where the reverend abbot,
With all his convent, honourably receiv'd him;
To whom he gave these words,-O father abbot,

The rod, and bird of peace, and all such emblems,An old man, broken with the storms of state,

Is come to lay his weary bones among ye;
Give him a little earth for charity!

Laid nobly on her: which perform'd, the choir,
With all the choicest music of the kingdom,
Together sung Te Deum. So she parted,
And with the same full state pac'd back again
To York-place, where the feast is held.

So went to bed: where eagerly his sickness
Pursu'd him still; and, three nights after this,
About the hour of eight, (which he himself
Foretold, should be his last,) full of repentance,
Continual meditations, tears, and sorrows,
He gave his honours to the world again,
His blessed part to heaven, and slept in peace.

Kath So may he rest; his faults lie gently on
him

1 Gent. Sir, you

Must no more call it York-place, that is past:
For, since the cardinal fell, that title's lost;
'Tis now the king's, and call'd-Whitehall.
3 Gent. I know it;

But 'tis so lately alter'd, that the old name
Is fresh about me.

2 Gent. What two reverend bishops

Were those that went on each side of the queen? 3 Gent. Stokesly and Gardiner; the one, of Winchester,

(Newly preferr'd from the king's secretary,) The other, London.

1 Gent. He of Winchester

However, yet there's no great breach; when it
comes,
[bin.
Cranmer will find a friend will not shrink from
2 Gent. Who may that be, I pray you?
3 Gent. Thomas Cromwell;

Is held no great good lover of the archbishop's,
The virtuous Cranmer.

3 Gent. All the land knows that:

A man in much esteem with the king, and truly
A worthy friend. The king

Has made him master o'the jewel-house,
And one, already, of the privy-council.

2 Gent. He will deserve more.

3 Gent. Yes, without all doubt.

Come, gentlemen, ye shall go my way, which
Is to the court, and there ye shall be my guests;
Something I can command. As I walk thither,
I'll tell ye more.

Both. You may command us, sir.

[exeunt.

SCENE II. KIMBOLTON.

Enter Katharine, Dowager, sick; led between
Griffith and Patience.

Grif. How does your grace?

Kath. O, Griffith, sick to death:

My legs, like loaden branches, bow to the earth,
Willing to leave their burden: reach a chair;-
So, now, methinks, I feel a little case.
Didst thou not tell me, Griffith, as thou led'st me,
That the great child of honour, cardinal Wolsey,
Was dead?

Grif. Yes, madam; but, I think, your grace,
Out of the pain you suffer'd, gave no ear to't.
Kath. Pr'ythee, good Griffith, tell me how he
If well, he stepp'd before me, happily,
For my example.

[died:

Grif. Well, the voice goes, madam :
For after the stout earl of Northumberland
Arrested him at York, and brought him forward
(As a man sorely tainted,) to his answer,
He fell sick suddenly, and grew so ill,
He could not sit his mule.

Kath. Alas! poor man?

[ocr errors]

Yet thus far, Griffith, give me leave to speak him,
And yet with charity,-He was a man
Of an unbounded stomach, ever ranking
Himself with princes; one, that by suggestion
Tied all the kingdom: simony was fair play;
His own opinion was his law: I'the presence
He would say untruths; and be ever double,
Both in his words and meaning: He was never,
But where he meant to ruin, pitiful:

His promises were, as he then was, mighty;
But his performance, as he is now, nothing.

[blocks in formation]

Grif. This cardinal,

Though from an humble stock, undoubtedly
Was fashion'd to much honour. From his cradle,
He was a scholar, and a ripe, and good one;
Exceeding wise, fair spoken, and persuading :
Lofty, and sour, to them that lov'd him not;
But to those men that sought him, sweet as summer.
And though he were unsatisfied in getting,
Which was a sin,) yet in bestowing, madam,
He was most princely Ever witness for him
Those twins of learning, that he rais'd in you,
Ipswich, and Oxford! one of which fell with him,
Unwilling to outlive the good that did it;
The other, though unfinish'd, yet so famous,
60 excellent in art, and still so rising,
That Christendom shall ever speak his virtue.
His overthrow heap'd happiness upon him;
For then, and not till then, he felt himself,
And found the blessedness of being little :
And, to add greater honours to his age
Than man could give him, he died, fearing God.
Kath. After my death I wish no other herald,
No other speaker of my living actions,
To keep mine honour from corruption,
But such an honest chronicler as Griffith.
Whom I most hated living, thou hast made me,
With thy religious truth, and modesty,
Now in his ashes honour: Peace be with him!—
Patience, be near me still; and set me lower:
I have not long to trouble thee.-Good Griffith,
Cause the musicians play me that sad note
I nam'd my knell, whilst I sit meditating
On that celestial harmony I go to.

[sad and solemn music.
Good wench, let's sit

|

Grif. She is asleep: down quiet, For fear we wake her ;-softly, gentle Patience. The Vision. Enter, solemnly tripping one after another, six Personages, clad in white robes, wearing on their heads garlands of bays, and golden vizards on their faces; branches of bays, or palm, in their hands. They first congee unto her, then dance; and, at certain changes, the first two hold a spare garland over her head; at which, the other four make reverent court'sies; then the two, that held the garland, deliver the same to the other next two, who observe the same order in their changes, and holding the garland over her head: which done, they deliver the same garland to the last two, who likewise observe the same order: at which (as it were by inspiration,) she makes in her sleep signs of rejoicing, and holdeth up her hands to heaven: and so in their dancing they vanish, carrying the garland with them. The music continues.

Kath. Spirits of peace, where are ye? are ye all gone?

And leave me here in wretchedness behind ye?

Grif. Madam, we are here. Kath. It is not you I call for; Saw ye none enter since I slept? Grif. None, madam.

[troop

Kath. No? Saw you not, even now, a blessed
Invite me to a banquet; whose bright faces
Cast thousand beams upon me, like the sun
They promis'd me eternal happiness;

And brought me garlands, Griffith, which I feel
I am not worthy yet to wear: I shall,
Assuredly.

Grif. I am most joyful, madam, such good Possess your fancy. [dreams

Kath. Bid the music leave,

[music ceases.

They are harsh and heavy to me.
Pat. Do you note,

How much her grace is alter'd on the sudden?
How long her face is drawn! how pale she looks,
And of an earthly cold? Mark you her eyes?
Grif. She is going, wench; pray, pray.

Pat. Heaven comfort her! Enter a Messenger. Mess. An't like your grace,— Kath. You are a saucy fellow : Deserve we no more reverence?

Grif. You are to blame,

Knowing, she will not lose her wonted greatness, To use so rude behaviour: go to, kneel.

Mess. I humbly do entreat your highness' pardon;

My haste made me unmannerly: There is staying A gentleman, sent from the king, to see you. Kath. Admit him entrance, Griffith: But this fellow

Let me ne'er see again. [ereunt Grif. and Mess. Re-enter Griffith, with Capucius.

If my sight fail not,

You should be lord ambassador from the emperor,
My royal nephew, and your name Capucius.
Cap. Madam, the same, your servant.
Kath. O my lord,

The times, and titles, now are alter'd strangely
With me, since first you knew me.
But, I pray
What is your pleasure with me?
[you,
Cap. Noble lady,

First, mine own service to your grace; the next,
The king's request that I would visit you;
Who grieves much for your weakness, and by me
Sends you his princely commendations,
And heartily entreats you take good comfort.

Kath. O my good lord, that comfort comes too 'Tis like a pardon after execution : [late; That gentle physic, given in time, had cur'd me; But now I am past all comforts here, but prayers. How does his highness?

Cap. Madam, in good health.

Kath. So may he ever do! and ever flourish, When I shall dwell with worms, and my poor

name

Banish'd the kingdom!-Patience, is that letter,
I caus'd you write, yet sent away?
Pat. No, madam. [giving it to Katharine
Kath. Sir, I most humbly pray you to deliver
This to my lord the king.

Cap. Most willing, madam.

[goodness

Kath. In which I have commended to his

« ForrigeFortsett »