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Page:Henry VI Part 3 (1923) Yale.djvu/107

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King Henry the Sixth, V. i
95
 

Rich. I thought, at least he would have said the king;
Or did he make the jest against his will?

War. Is not a dukedom, sir, a goodly gift?

Rich. Ay, by my faith, for a poor earl to give:32
I'll do thee service for so good a gift.

War. 'Twas I that gave the kingdom to thy brother.

K. Edw. Why then 'tis mine, if but by Warwick's gift.

War. Thou art no Atlas for so great a weight: 36
And, weakling, Warwick takes his gift again;
And Henry is my king, Warwick his subject.

K. Edw. But Warwick's king is Edward's prisoner;
And, gallant Warwick, do but answer this,40
What is the body, when the head is off?

Rich. Alas! that Warwick had no more forecast,
But, whiles he thought to steal the single ten,
The king was slily finger'd from the deck.44
You left poor Henry at the bishop's palace,
And, ten to one, you'll meet him in the Tower.

K. Edw. 'Tis even so: yet you are Warwick still.

Rich. Come, Warwick, take the time; kneel down, kneel down:48
Nay, when! strike now, or else the iron cools.

War. I had rather chop this hand off at a blow,
And with the other fling it at thy face,
Than bear so low a sail to strike to thee.52

K. Edw. Sail how thou canst, have wind and tide thy friend;
This hand, fast wound about thy coal-black hair,
Shall, whiles thy head is warm and new cut off,
Write in the dust this sentence with thy blood:56


36 Atlas: capable supporter
42 forecast: forethought
43 single: simple, unimportant
44 deck: pack of cards
45 bishop's palace; cf. n.
48 time: favorable moment
49 Nay, when: come! come!