Richard II

Act I
Act II
Act IV
Act V
Enter the Queen, Bushy, and Bagot
sad (adj.) 3 downcast, distressed, mournful, gloomy


Madam, your majesty is too much sad.

You promised when you parted with the King

To lay aside life-harming heaviness,

And entertain a cheerful disposition.
entertain (v.) 12 maintain, keep up, practise


To please the King I did. To please myself

I cannot do it. Yet I know no cause

Why I should welcome such a guest as grief

Save bidding farewell to so sweet a guest

As my sweet Richard. Yet again methinks
methinks(t), methought(s) (v.) it seems /seemed to me See Topics: Frequency count

Some unborn sorrow ripe in fortune's womb

Is coming towards me, and my inward soul

With nothing trembles. At some thing it grieves

More than with parting from my lord the King.


Each substance of a grief hath twenty shadows

Which shows like grief itself, but is not so.

For sorrow's eye, glazed with blinding tears,

Divides one thing entire to many objects,

Like perspectives which, rightly gazed upon,
perspective (n.) picture in which perspective is altered so as to appear distorted unless seen from a particular angle

Show nothing but confusion; eyed awry,

Distinguish form. So your sweet majesty,
distinguish (v.) 2 discern, make out, show distinctly

Looking awry upon your lord's departure,
awry (adv.) mistakenly, wrongly, erroneously

Find shapes of grief more than himself to wail,
wail (v.) bewail, lament, grieve [for]

Which looked on as it is, is naught but shadows

Of what it is not. Then, thrice-gracious Queen,

More than your lord's departure weep not – more is not seen,

Or if it be, 'tis with false sorrow's eye,
false (adj.) 3 sham, spurious, not genuine, artificial

Which for things true weeps things imaginary.


It may be so; but yet my inward soul

Persuades me it is otherwise. Howe'er it be

I cannot but be sad – so heavy-sad
heavy (adj.) 1 sorrowful, sad, gloomy See Topics: Frequency count

As, though on thinking on no thought I think,

Makes me with heavy nothing faint and shrink.
shrink (v.) 1 shiver, recoil, draw back


'Tis nothing but conceit, my gracious lady.
conceit (n.) 2 imagining, brooding, fanciful thinking


'Tis nothing less. Conceit is still derived
still (adv.) 1 constantly, always, continually See Topics: Frequency count

From some forefather grief. Mine is not so,

For nothing hath begot my something grief,

Or something hath the nothing that I grieve –

'Tis in reversion that I do possess –
reversion (n.) 1 right of succession, situation of reverting to its original owner

But what it is that is not yet known what,

I cannot name; 'tis nameless woe, I wot.
wot (v.) 1 learn, know, be told See Topics: Frequency count

Enter Green


God save your majesty, and well met, gentlemen.

I hope the King is not yet shipped for Ireland.


Why hopest thou so? 'Tis better hope he is,

For his designs crave haste, his haste good hope.
crave (v.) 2 need, demand, require
design (n.) 1 undertaking, purpose, enterprise

Then wherefore dost thou hope he is not shipped?


That he, our hope, might have retired his power,
power (n.) 1 armed force, troops, host, army See Topics: Frequency count
retire (v.) 2 retreat, pull back, withdraw

And driven into despair an enemy's hope,

Who strongly hath set footing in this land.

The banished Bolingbroke repeals himself,
repeal (v.) recall, call back [from exile]

And with uplifted arms is safe arrived
arms (n.) 1 weapons, armaments
uplifted (adj.) brandished, raised up

At Ravenspurgh.


                         Now God in heaven forbid!


Ah, madam, 'tis too true! And, that is worse,

The Lord Northumberland, his son young Henry Percy,

The Lords of Ross, Beaumont, and Willoughby,

With all their powerful friends are fled to him.


Why have you not proclaimed Northumberland

And all the rest, revolted faction, traitors?
revolted (adj.) 1 rebellious, insurgent, insubordinate


We have; whereupon the Earl of Worcester

Hath broken his staff, resigned his stewardship,

And all the household servants fled with him

To Bolingbroke.


So, Green, thou art the midwife to my woe,

And Bolingbroke my sorrow's dismal heir.
heir (n.) offspring, progeny, fruit

Now hath my soul brought forth her prodigy,
prodigy (n.) 2 monster, abnormal birth, ominous monstrosity

And I, a gasping new-delivered mother,

Have woe to woe, sorrow to sorrow joined.


Despair not, madam.


                         Who shall hinder me?

I will despair and be at enmity

With cozening hope. He is a flatterer,
cozening (adj.) cheating, deceiving, fraudulent

A parasite, a keeper-back of death

Who gently would dissolve the bands of life
band (n.) 5 bond, shackle, chain
dissolve (v.) 1 loosen, release, set free

Which false hope lingers in extremity.
extremity (n.) 1 utmost degree, greatest amount
linger (v.) 2 prolong, draw out, extend

Enter York


Here comes the Duke of York.


With signs of war about his aged neck.

O, full of careful business are his looks!
business (n.) 5 concern, uneasiness, distress
careful (adj.) 1 anxious, concerned, worried

Uncle, for God's sake speak comfortable words.
comfortable (adj.) 2 comforting, encouraging, reassuring


Should I do so I should belie my thoughts.

Comfort's in heaven, and we are on the earth,

Where nothing lives but crosses, cares, and grief.
cross (n.) 1 trial, affliction, trouble

Your husband, he is gone to save far off,

Whilst others come to make him lose at home.

Here am I left to underprop his land,

Who weak with age cannot support myself.

Now comes the sick hour that his surfeit made.
sick (adj.) 3 ill through excess, surfeited

Now shall he try his friends that flattered him.
try (v.) 2 put to the test, test the goodness [of]

Enter a Servingman


My lord, your son was gone before I came.


He was? – why, so. Go all which way it will.

The nobles they are fled. The commons they are cold,

And will, I fear, revolt on Hereford's side.

Sirrah, get thee to Pleshey to my sister Gloucester.

Bid her send me presently a thousand pound –
presently (adv.) 1 immediately, instantly, at once See Topics: Frequency count

Hold: take my ring.


My lord, I had forgot to tell your lordship –

Today as I came by I called there –

But I shall grieve you to report the rest.


What is't, knave?
knave (n.) 2 servant, menial, lackey


An hour before I came the Duchess died.


God for his mercy, what a tide of woes

Comes rushing on this woeful land at once!

I know not what to do. I would to God –

So my untruth had not provoked him to it –
untruth (n.) disloyalty, unfaithfulness, infidelity

The King had cut off my head with my brother's.

What, are there no posts dispatched for Ireland?
post (n.) 1 express messenger, courier See Topics: Frequency count

How shall we do for money for these wars?

Come, sister – cousin, I would say – pray pardon me.

Go, fellow, get thee home, provide some carts,

And bring away the armour that is there.

Gentlemen, will you go muster men?

If I know how or which way to order these affairs

Thus disorderly thrust into my hands,

Never believe me. Both are my kinsmen.

T' one is my sovereign, whom both my oath

And duty bids defend. T'other again

Is my kinsman, whom the King hath wronged,

Whom conscience and my kindred bids to right.

Well, somewhat we must do. (To the Queen) Come, cousin,

I'll dispose of you. Gentlemen, go muster up your men,
dispose of (v.) make arrangements for

And meet me presently at Berkeley.
presently (adv.) 2 after a short time, soon, before long

I should to Pleshey, too,

But time will not permit. All is uneven,
uneven (adj.) irregular, erratic

And everything is left at six and seven.

Exeunt York and the Queen

Bushy, Bagot, and Green remain


The wind sits fair for news to go to Ireland,

But none returns. For us to levy power
power (n.) 1 armed force, troops, host, army See Topics: Frequency count

Proportionable to the enemy
proportionable (adj.) proportional, comparable, commensurate [with]

Is all unpossible.
unpossible (adj.) impossible


Besides, our nearness to the King in love

Is near the hate of those love not the King.


And that is the wavering commons; for their love
common (n.) 1 (people) common people, ordinary citizens

Lies in their purses, and whoso empties them

By so much fills their hearts with deadly hate.


Wherein the King stands generally condemned.
generally (adv.) universally, without exception, in the eyes of all


If judgement lie in them, then so do we,

Because we ever have been near the King.
ever (adv.) constantly, continually, at all times


Well, I will for refuge straight to Bristol Castle.
straight (adv.) straightaway, immediately, at once See Topics: Frequency count

The Earl of Wiltshire is already there.


Thither will I with you; for little office
office (n.) 5 service, sympathy, kindness

Will the hateful commons perform for us –
common (n.) 1 (people) common people, ordinary citizens
hateful (adj.) 1 full of hate

Except like curs to tear us all to pieces.

Will you go along with us?


No, I will to Ireland to his majesty.

Farewell. If heart's presages be not vain,
presage (n.) 2 foreboding, presentiment, misgiving

We three here part that ne'er shall meet again.


That's as York thrives to beat back Bolingbroke.


Alas, poor Duke! The task he undertakes

Is numbering sands and drinking oceans dry.

Where one on his side fights, thousands will fly.


Farewell at once, for once, for all, and ever.


Well, we may meet again.


                         I fear me, never.


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