Henry VI Part 3

Act I
Act II
Act IV
Act V
Alarum. Enter Richard Duke of York
field (n.) 1 field of battle, battleground, field of combat See Topics: Frequency count
get (v.) 2 win, gain, obtain victory in


The army of the Queen hath got the field;

My uncles both are slain in rescuing me;

And all my followers to the eager foe
eager (adj.) 5 impetuous, fierce, impassioned

Turn back and fly, like ships before the wind
turn back (v.) 2 turn tail, retreat, withdraw

Or lambs pursued by hunger-starved wolves.

My sons, God knows what hath bechanced them;
bechance (v.) happen to, befall

But this I know, they have demeaned themselves
demean (v.) behave, conduct, comport [oneself]

Like men born to renown by life or death.

Three times did Richard make a lane to me,
lane (n.) path, passage, way

And thrice cried ‘ Courage, father! Fight it out!’

And full as oft came Edward to my side,
oft (adv.) often See Topics: Frequency count

With purple falchion, painted to the hilt
falchion (n.) curved broadsword See Topics: Weapons
purple (adj.) bright-red, blood-coloured, bloody

In blood of those that had encountered him.

And when the hardiest warriors did retire,
retire (v.) 2 retreat, pull back, withdraw

Richard cried ‘ Charge! And give no foot of ground!’

And cried ‘ A crown, or else a glorious tomb!

A sceptre or an earthly sepulchre!’
earthly (adj.) 1 within the earth, existing in the ground

With this we charged again; but, out, alas!

We budged again; as I have seen a swan
budge, bodge (v.) 2 give way, retreat

With bootless labour swim against the tide
bootless (adj.) useless, worthless, fruitless, unavailing

And spend her strength with overmatching waves.
overmatching (adj.) overwhelming, of superior power
with (prep.) 1 against

A short alarum within
fatal (adj.) 3 death-dealing, death-boding

Ah, hark! The fatal followers do pursue,

And I am faint and cannot fly their fury;
faint (adj.) 3 weak, fatigued, lacking in strength

And were I strong, I would not shun their fury.

The sands are numbered that makes up my life;

Here must I stay, and here my life must end.
stay (v.) 2 linger, tarry, delay

Enter the Queen, Clifford, Northumberland, the

young Prince, and soldiers

Come, bloody Clifford, rough Northumberland,
rough (adj.) 1 violent, harsh, cruel

I dare your quenchless fury to more rage;

I am your butt, and I abide your shot.
abide (v.) 2 wait for, await, look out for
butt (n.) 1 goal, aim, target [as in archery]


Yield to our mercy, proud Plantagenet.


Ay, to such mercy as his ruthless arm

With downright payment showed unto my father.
downright (adj.) 2 directed straight down, coming from above

Now Phaethon hath tumbled from his car,

And made an evening at the noontide prick.
prick (n.) 5 [on a sundial] mark, point, division


My ashes, as the phoenix, may bring forth

A bird that will revenge upon you all;

And in that hope I throw mine eyes to heaven,

Scorning whate'er you can afflict me with.

Why come you not? What! Multitudes, and fear?


So cowards fight when they can fly no further;

So doves do peck the falcon's piercing talons;

So desperate thieves, all hopeless of their lives,
hopeless (adj.) 1 despairing, without hope

Breathe out invectives 'gainst the officers.
breathe out (v.) speak, utter


O Clifford, but bethink thee once again,
bethink (v.), past form bethought 1 call to mind, think about, consider, reflect See Topics: Frequency count

And in thy thought o'errun my former time;
overrun (v.) 1 review, go over, make an overview of
time (n.) 3 lifetime, life

And, if though canst for blushing, view this face,

And bite thy tongue, that slanders him with cowardice
bite one's tongue stay silent, repress speech

Whose frown hath made thee faint and fly ere this!
faint (v.) 1 lose courage, show fear, lose heart, take fright


I will not bandy with thee word for word,
bandy (v.) 1 exchange, swap, send to and fro

But buckler with thee blows, twice two for one.
buckler (v.) 1 exchange, grapple, couple; catch or ward off [blows]

He draws his sword
hold (v.) 8 stop, cease, hold on


Hold, valiant Clifford! For a thousand causes

I would prolong awhile the traitor's life.

Wrath makes him deaf; speak thou, Northumberland.


Hold, Clifford! Do not honour him so much
hold (v.) 8 stop, cease, hold on

To prick thy finger, though to wound his heart.

What valour were it, when a cur doth grin,
grin (v.) bare the teeth, grimace, snarl

For one to thrust his hand between his teeth,

When he might spurn him with his foot away?
spurn (v.) 2 kick, strike, stamp [on], dash

It is war's prize to take all vantages;
prize (n.) 2 advantage, privilege
vantage (n.) 1 right moment, suitable opportunity

And ten to one is no impeach of valour.
impeach (n.) 2 disparagement, reproach [to], detraction [from]

They fight and York is taken
gin (n.) snare, trap
woodcock (n.) type of game bird, thought to be easily tricked or snared; simpleton


Ay, ay, so strives the woodcock with the gin.


So doth the cony struggle in the net.
cony (n.) rabbit


So triumph thieves upon their conquered booty;
triumph (v.) exult, gloat, glory

So true men yield, with robbers so o'ermatched.
overmatched (adj.) outnumbered, faced with superior strength
true (adj.) 4 honest, upright, law-abiding


What would your grace have done unto him now?


Brave warriors, Clifford and Northumberland,
brave (adj.) 2 noble, worthy, excellent

Come, make him stand upon this molehill here

That raught at mountains with outstretched arms,
reach at (v.) reach out for, strive to attain

Yet parted but the shadow with his hand.
part (v.) 3 cleave, break, tear

What! Was it you that would be England's king?

Was't you that revelled in our parliament
revel (v.) make merry, riot, hold a party

And made a preachment of your high descent?
high (adj.) 3 noble, dignified, aristocratic
preachment (n.) sermon, discourse, harangue

Where are your mess of sons to back you now?
back (v.) 1 support, help, back up
mess (n.) 1 company, group, gang of four

The wanton Edward, and the lusty George?
lusty (adj.) 1 vigorous, strong, robust, eager
wanton (adj.) 6 lascivious, lewd, obscene

And where's that valiant crook-back prodigy,
crook-back (adj.) hunchbacked
prodigy (n.) 2 monster, abnormal birth, ominous monstrosity

Dicky your boy, that with his grumbling voice
grumbling (adj.) querulous, discontented, carping

Was wont to cheer his dad in mutinies?
cheer (v.) encourage, urge on, galvanize
mutiny (n.) 2 rebellion, revolt, quarrel
wont (v.) be accustomed, used [to], be in the habit of See Topics: Frequency count

Or, with the rest, where is your darling Rutland?

Look, York, I stained this napkin with the blood
napkin (n.) 1 handkerchief

That valiant Clifford, with his rapier's point,

Made issue from the bosom of the boy;

And if thine eyes can water for his death,

I give thee this to dry thy cheeks withal.

Alas, poor York! But that I hate thee deadly,
deadly (adv.) 1 extremely, implacably, to the death

I should lament thy miserable state.

I prithee grieve, to make me merry, York.

What! Hath thy fiery heart so parched thine entrails
parch (v.) dry up, shrivel up

That not a tear can fall for Rutland's death?

Why art thou patient, man? Thou shouldst be mad;
mad (adj.) 3 angry, furious, beside oneself

And I, to make thee mad, do mock thee thus.

Stamp, rave, and fret, that I may sing and dance.

Thou wouldst be fee'd, I see, to make me sport;
fee (v.) 1 pay, recompense
sport (n.) 1 recreation, amusement, entertainment See Topics: Frequency count

York cannot speak, unless he wear a crown.

A crown for York! And, lords, bow low to him;

Hold you his hands whilst I do set it on.

She puts a paper crown on York's head

Ay, marry, sir, now looks he like a king!

Ay, this is he that took King Henry's chair;
chair (n.) 1 throne

And this is he was his adopted heir.

But how is it that great Plantagenet

Is crowned so soon, and broke his solemn oath?

As I bethink me, you should not be king

Till our King Henry had shook hands with Death.

And will you pale your head in Henry's glory,
pale (v.) 1 enclose, surround, encompass

And rob his temples of the diadem,
diadem (n.) crown, sovereign power

Now in his life, against your holy oath?

O, 'tis a fault too too unpardonable!
fault (n.) 1 sin, offence, crime

Off with the crown; and, with the crown, his head;

And, whilst we breathe, take time to do him dead.
breathe (v.) 2 catch breath, pause, rest
time (n.) 8 right moment, favourable opportunity


That is my office, for my father's sake.
office (n.) 1 task, service, duty, responsibility See Topics: Frequency count


Nay, stay; let's hear the orisons he makes.
orison (n.) prayer, plea
stay (v.) 2 linger, tarry, delay


She-wolf of France, but worse than wolves of France,

Whose tongue more poisons than the adder's tooth!

How ill-beseeming is it in thy sex
ill-beseeming (adj.) unseemly, inappropriate, unbecoming

To triumph, like an Amazonian trull,
Amazonian (adj.) 1 resembling a female warrior [of the mythical Amazonian race]; warlike
triumph (v.) exult, gloat, glory
trull (n.) drab, trollop, whore

Upon their woes whom Fortune captivates!
captivate (v.) make captive, capture, imprison

But that thy face is vizard-like, unchanging,
vizard-like (adj.) like a mask, expressionless

Made impudent with use of evil deeds,
use (n.) 1 usual practice, habit, custom

I would assay, proud Queen, to make thee blush.
assay (v.) 1 attempt, try, venture

To tell thee whence thou camest, of whom derived,
derive (v.) 1 descend

Were shame enough to shame thee, wert thou not shameless.

Thy father bears the type of King of Naples,
type (n.) 3 title, stamp, distinguishing mark

Of both the Sicils and Jerusalem,

Yet not so wealthy as an English yeoman.
yeoman (n.) 1 man who owns property but is not a gentleman; land-holding farmer

Hath that poor monarch taught thee to insult?
insult (v.) be insolent, show scorn, triumph scornfully

It needs not, nor it boots thee not, proud Queen;
boot (v.) 1 help, serve, benefit, be useful [to]
need (v.) be necessary, be needful

Unless the adage must be verified,
adage (n.) proverb, saying, maxim
verify (v.) 1 confirm, substantiate, prove correct

That beggars mounted run their horse to death.

'Tis beauty that doth oft make women proud,
oft (adv.) often See Topics: Frequency count

But, God He knows, thy share thereof is small.

'Tis virtue that doth make them most admired;
admired (adj.) 2 regarded with admiration, wondered at

The contrary doth make thee wondered at.

'Tis government that makes them seem divine;
government (n.) 2 self-control, self-discipline, moral conduct

The want thereof makes thee abominable.
want (n.) 1 lack, shortage, dearth

Thou art as opposite to every good

As the Antipodes are unto us,

Or as the south to the Septentrion.

O tiger's heart wrapped in a woman's hide!

How couldst thou drain the lifeblood of the child,

To bid the father wipe his eyes withal,

And yet be seen to bear a woman's face?

Women are soft, mild, pitiful and flexible;
flexible (adj.) yielding, pliable, easily moved
pitiful (adj.) compassionate, merciful, tender

Thou stern, obdurate, flinty, rough, remorseless.
indurate (adj.) callous, hardened, obstinate
rough (adj.) 1 violent, harsh, cruel

Biddest thou me rage? Why, now thou hast thy wish;

Wouldst have me weep? Why, now thou hast thy will;

For raging wind blows up incessant showers,

And when the rage allays, the rain begins.
allay (v.) 1 subside, abate, diminish, quell

These tears are my sweet Rutland's obsequies,
obsequy (n.) funeral rite, burial ceremony

And every drop cries vengeance for his death

'Gainst thee, fell Clifford, and thee, false Frenchwoman.
fell (adj.) 1 cruel, fierce, savage


Beshrew me, but his passions moves me so
beshrew, 'shrew (v.) 1 curse, devil take, evil befall See Topics: Frequency count
passion (n.) 5 passionate outburst, emotional passage

That hardly can I check my eyes from tears.
check (v.) 2 restrain, stop, hold back


That face of his the hungry cannibals

Would not have touched, would not have stained with blood;

But you are more inhuman, more inexorable,
inexorable (adj.) merciless, relentlessly severe

O, ten times more, than tigers of Hyrcania.

See, ruthless Queen, a hapless father's tears;
hapless (adj.) luckless, unfortunate, unlucky

This cloth thou dipped'st in blood of my sweet boy,

And I with tears do wash the blood away.

Keep thou the napkin, and go boast of this;

And if thou tellest the heavy story right,
heavy (adj.) 1 sorrowful, sad, gloomy See Topics: Frequency count

Upon my soul, the hearers will shed tears;

Yea even my foes will shed fast-falling tears,

And say ‘ Alas, it was a piteous deed!’

There, take the crown, and with the crown my curse;

And in thy need such comfort come to thee

As now I reap at thy too cruel hand!

Hard-hearted Clifford, take me from the world;

My soul to heaven, my blood upon your heads!


Had he been slaughter-man to all my kin,
slaughterman, slaughter-man (n.) executioner, slayer, murderer

I should not for my life but weep with him,

To see how inly sorrow gripes his soul.
gripe (v.) clutch, grasp, seize
inly (adj.) inward, internal, heartfelt


What, weeping-ripe, my Lord Northumberland?
weeping-ripe (adj.) ready to weep, on the point of tears

Think but upon the wrong he did us all,

And that will quickly dry thy melting tears.
melting (adj.) 2 soft-hearted, tender-hearted, pitying


Here's for my oath, here's for my father's death.

He stabs York
gentle-hearted (adj.) noble-hearted


And here's to right our gentle-hearted King.

She stabs York


Open Thy gate of mercy, gracious God!

My soul flies through these wounds to seek out Thee.

He dies


Off with his head, and set it on York gates;

So York may overlook the town of York.

Flourish. Exeunt

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