Henry VI Part 2

Act I
Act II
Act IV
Act V
Sound trumpets. Enter the King, Queen, Gloucester,

York, Suffolk, and Salisbury; the Duchess of

Gloucester, Margery Jourdain, Southwell, Hume,

and Bolingbroke, guarded


Stand forth, Dame Eleanor Cobham, Gloucester's wife.

In sight of God and us your guilt is great;

Receive the sentence of the law for sins

Such as by God's book are adjudged to death.

You four, from hence to prison back again;

From thence unto the place of execution.

The witch in Smithfield shall be burnt to ashes,

And you three shall be strangled on the gallows.

You, madam, for you are more nobly born,

Despoiled of your honour in your life,
despoil (v.) deprive, strip, dispossess

Shall, after three days' open penance done,

Live in your country here in banishment

With Sir John Stanley in the Isle of Man.


Welcome is banishment; welcome were my death.


Eleanor, the law, thou seest, hath judged thee;

I cannot justify whom the law condemns.
justify (v.) 3 excuse, exonerate, clear

Mine eyes are full of tears, my heart of grief.

Exeunt the Duchess and the other prisoners, guarded

Ah, Humphrey, this dishonour in thine age

Will bring thy head with sorrow to the ground!

I beseech your majesty give me leave to go;

Sorrow would solace, and mine age would ease.


Stay, Humphrey Duke of Gloucester. Ere thou go,

Give up thy staff. Henry will to himself

Protector be; and God shall be my hope,

My stay, my guide, and lantern to my feet.

And go in peace, Humphrey, no less beloved

Than when thou wert Protector to thy King.


I see no reason why a king of years

Should be to be protected like a child.

God and King Henry govern England's realm!

Give up your staff, sir, and the King his realm.


My staff? Here, noble Henry, is my staff;

As willingly do I the same resign

As ere thy father Henry made it mine;

And even as willingly at thy feet I leave it

As others would ambitiously receive it.

Farewell, good King. When I am dead and gone,

May honourable peace attend thy throne.
attend (v.) 4 accompany, follow closely, go with



Why, now is Henry King and Margaret Queen;

And Humphrey Duke of Gloucester scarce himself,

That bears so shrewd a maim; two pulls at once –
bear (v.), past forms bore, borne 6 tolerate, endure, put up with
maim (n.) wound, injury, mutilation
pull (n.) wrench, blow, thing torn away
shrewd (adj.) 1 harsh, hard, severe

His lady banished and a limb lopped off.

This staff of honour raught, there let it stand
reach (v.), past form raught 3 carry off, snatch away, take hold of

Where it best fits to be, in Henry's hand.


Thus droops this lofty pine and hangs his sprays;
spray (n.) branch, limb, offshoot

Thus Eleanor's pride dies in her youngest days.


Lords, let him go. Please it your majesty,

This is the day appointed for the combat,

And ready are the appellant and defendant,
appellant (n.) accuser [of treason], challenger, denouncer

The armourer and his man, to enter the lists,
list (n.) 1 (usually plural) combat arena at a tournament

So please your highness to behold the fight.


Ay, good my lord; for purposely therefore

Left I the court to see this quarrel tried.
quarrel (n.) cause of complaint, reason for hostility, difference, claim
try (v.) 3 contest, decide, fight out


A God's name, see the lists and all things fit;
fit (adj.) 2 ready, prepared, made suitable
list (n.) 1 (usually plural) combat arena at a tournament

Here let them end it, and God defend the right!
end (v.) 2 settle, resolve


I never saw a fellow worse bestead,
bestead, bested (adj.) situated, prepared, placed

Or more afraid to fight, than is the appellant,
appellant (n.) accuser [of treason], challenger, denouncer

The servant of this armourer, my lords.

Enter at one door Horner the armourer and his

Neighbours, drinking to him so much that he is

drunk; and he enters with a drum before him and his

staff with a sand-bag fastened to it; and at the other

door Peter his man, with a drum and sand-bag, and

Prentices drinking to him


Here, neighbour Horner, I drink to

you in a cup of sack; and fear not, neighbour, you
sack (n.) [type of] white wine

shall do well enough.


And here, neighbour, here's a cup

of charneco.
charneco (n.) variety of sweet Portuguese wine


And here's a pot of good double beer,
double (adj.) 5 [of beer] extra strong, very powerful

neighbour. Drink, and fear not your man.


Let it come, i'faith, and I'll pledge you all;
pledge (v.) drink a toast to, drink to

and a fig for Peter!


Here, Peter, I drink to thee; and be not



Be merry, Peter, and fear not thy

master. Fight for the credit of the prentices.
credit (n.) 3 reputation, name, standing, honour
prentice (n.) apprentice


I thank you all. Drink, and pray for me, I pray you,

for I think I have taken my last draught in this world.

Here, Robin, an if I die, I give thee my apron; and,

Will, thou shalt have my hammer; and here, Tom,

take all the money that I have. O Lord bless me, I pray

God, for I am never able to deal with my master, he hath

learnt so much fence already.
fence (n.) 1 fencing ability, skill at swordplay


Come, leave your drinking and fall to blows.

Sirrah, what's thy name?


Peter, forsooth.
forsooth (adv.) in truth, certainly, truly, indeed See Topics: Frequency count


Peter? What more?




Thump? Then see thou thump thy master well.


Masters, I am come hither, as it were, upon my

man's instigation, to prove him a knave and myself an
knave (n.) 1 scoundrel, rascal, rogue See Topics: Frequency count

honest man; and touching the Duke of York, I will take
death, take my stake my life

my death I never meant him any ill, nor the King, nor

the Queen; and therefore, Peter, have at thee with a
have at [someone] [said at the start of a fencing attack or other confrontation] I come at, let me at [a person] See Topics: Discourse markers

downright blow.
downright (adj.) 2 directed straight down, coming from above


Dispatch; this knave's tongue begins to double.
dispatch, despatch (v.) 4 hurry up, be quick
double (v.) 2 become slurred, thicken, stutter
knave (n.) 1 scoundrel, rascal, rogue See Topics: Frequency count

Sound, trumpets, alarum to the combatants.
alarm, alarum, 'larm, 'larum (n.) 1 call to arms, call to battle, signal to begin fighting See Topics: Stage directions

Alarum; they fight and Peter strikes Horner down


Hold, Peter, hold! I confess, I confess treason.

He dies


Take away his weapon. Fellow, thank God and the

good wine in thy master's way.


O God, have I overcome mine enemies in this

presence? O Peter, thou hast prevailed in right!
presence (n.) 1 royal assembly, eminent company


Go, take hence that traitor from our sight;

For by his death we do perceive his guilt,

And God in justice hath revealed to us

The truth and innocence of this poor fellow,

Which he had thought to have murdered wrongfully.

Come, fellow, follow us for thy reward.

Sound a flourish. Exeunt

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