Henry VI Part 1

Act I
Act II
Act IV
Act V
Flourish. Enter the King, Exeter, Gloucester, Winchester,

Warwick, Somerset, Suffolk, Richard Plantaganet,

and others. Gloucester offers to put up a bill.

Winchester snatches it, tears it


Comest thou with deep premeditated lines?
line (n.) 6 prepared written statement
offer (v.) 1 attempt, start, try, make a move
put up a bill present a list of accusations

With written pamphlets studiously devised?
pamphlet (n.) document, text

Humphrey of Gloucester, if thou canst accuse

Or aught intendest to lay unto my charge,
aught (n.) anything, [with negative word] nothing See Topics: Frequency count
charge (n.) 6 accusation, censure, blame

Do it without invention, suddenly;
invention (n.) 5 plan, scheme, stratagem
suddenly (adv.) 2 extempore, spontaneously, off the cuff

As I with sudden and extemporal speech
extemporal (adj.) extempore, unplanned, improvised
sudden (adj.) 5 unpremeditated, extempore, unrehearsed

Purpose to answer what thou canst object.
object (v.) urge, adduce, bring up
purpose (v.) 1 intend, plan


Presumptuous priest, this place commands my patience,

Or thou shouldst find thou hast dishonoured me.

Think not, although in writing I preferred
prefer (v.) 3 present, bring forward

The manner of thy vile outrageous crimes,

That therefore I have forged, or am not able

Verbatim to rehearse the method of my pen.
method (n.) 1 exposition, thesis, expressed content
rehearse (v.) 1 relate, recount, give an account of

No, prelate; such is thy audacious wickedness,

Thy lewd, pestiferous, and dissentious pranks,
lewd (adj.) 2 wicked, vile, evil
pestiferous (adj.) pestilent, mischievous, pernicious
prank (n.) 2 malicious act, wicked deed

As very infants prattle of thy pride.

Thou art a most pernicious usurer,

Froward by nature, enemy to peace,
froward (adj.) 1 perverse, obstinate, wilful, ungovernable

Lascivious, wanton, more than well beseems
beseem (v.) befit, be fitting [for], be seemly [for]
wanton (adj.) 6 lascivious, lewd, obscene

A man of thy profession and degree.
degree (n.) 1 rank, station, standing

And for thy treachery, what's more manifest,

In that thou laidest a trap to take my life,

As well at London Bridge as at the Tower?

Besides, I fear me, if thy thoughts were sifted,
sift (v.) 1 question carefully, examine closely

The King, thy sovereign, is not quite exempt

From envious malice of thy swelling heart.
envious (adj.) malicious, spiteful, vindictive, full of enmity See Topics: Frequency count
swelling (adj.) 2 swollen [with pride], arrogant


Gloucester, I do defy thee. Lords, vouchsafe

To give me hearing what I shall reply.

If I were covetous, ambitious, or perverse,

As he will have me, how am I so poor?

Or how haps it I seek not to advance
hap (v.) happen, take place, come to pass

Or raise myself, but keep my wonted calling?
calling (n.) 2 vocation, profession, high station in life
wonted (adj.) accustomed, usual, customary

And for dissension, who preferreth peace

More than I do, except I be provoked?

No, my good lords, it is not that offends;

It is not that that hath incensed the Duke:

It is because no one should sway but he,
sway (v.) 1 control, rule, direct, govern

No one but he should be about the King;
about (prep.) 2 in the company of

And that engenders thunder in his breast

And makes him roar these accusations forth.

But he shall know I am as good –


                         As good?

Thou bastard of my grandfather!


Ay, lordly sir; for what are you, I pray,

But one imperious in another's throne?
imperious, emperious (adj.) imperial, majestic, sovereign


Am I not Protector, saucy priest?
saucy (adj.) 1 insolent, impudent, presumptuous, defiant


And am not I a prelate of the Church?


Yes, as an outlaw in a castle keeps,
keep (v.) 1 lodge, live, dwell

And useth it to patronage his theft.
patronage (v.) protect, uphold, defend


Unreverent Gloucester!
unreverent (adj.) irreverent, disrespectful, unseemly


                         Thou art reverend

Touching thy spiritual function, not thy life.


Rome shall remedy this.


                         Roam thither then.


(to Warwick)
forbear (v.) 3 control oneself, have patience [for]

My lord, it were your duty to forbear.


Ay, see the Bishop be not overborne.
overbear (v.) 2 overrule, overcome, put down


Methinks my lord should be religious,
methinks(t), methought(s) (v.) it seems /seemed to me See Topics: Frequency count

And know the office that belongs to such.
office (n.) 1 task, service, duty, responsibility See Topics: Frequency count


Methinks his lordship should be humbler;

It fitteth not a prelate so to plead.
fit (v.) 1 suit, befit, be suitable [for]
plead (v.) 2 argue, debate, wrangle


Yes, when his holy state is touched so near.
near (adv.) 1 closely, intimately, seriously
state (n.) 2 status, rank, position
touch (v.) 1 affect, concern, regard, relate to


State holy or unhallowed, what of that?

Is not his grace Protector to the King?



Plantagenet, I see, must hold his tongue,

Lest it be said ‘ Speak, sirrah, when you should;

Must your bold verdict enter talk with lords?’
bold (adj.) 2 overconfident, presumptuous, audacious, impudent
enter (v.) 1 enter into, engage in
verdict (n.) 1 opinion, judgement, view

Else would I have a fling at Winchester.
fling (n.) 1 dig, gibe, taunt


Uncles of Gloucester and of Winchester,

The special watchmen of our English weal,
weal 1 state, community, commonwealth

I would prevail, if prayers might prevail,

To join your hearts in love and amity.

O, what a scandal is it to our crown

That two such noble peers as ye should jar!
jar (v.) 1 quarrel, wrangle, disagree [over]

Believe me, lords, my tender years can tell

Civil dissension is a viperous worm

That gnaws the bowels of the commonwealth.

A noise within: ‘ Down with the tawny coats!’
warrant (v.) 1 assure, promise, guarantee, confirm See Topics: Frequency count

What tumult's this?


                         An uproar, I dare warrant,

Begun through malice of the Bishop's men.
uproar (n.) public disturbance, outbreak of disorder

A noise again: ‘ Stones! Stones!’ Enter the Mayor


O my good lords, and virtuous Henry,

Pity the city of London, pity us!

The Bishop and the Duke of Gloucester's men,

Forbidden late to carry any weapon,
late (adv.) recently, a little while ago / before

Have filled their pockets full of pebble stones

And, banding themselves in contrary parts,
contrary (adj.) 1 opposite, opposing, rival
part (n.) 2 side, camp, party

Do pelt so fast at one another's pate
pate (n.) head, skull See Topics: Frequency count

That many have their giddy brains knocked out.
giddy (adj.) 5 wild with rage, mad with anger

Our windows are broke down in every street
window (n.) 1 shutter

And we, for fear, compelled to shut our shops.

Enter Servingmen of Gloucester and Winchester in

skirmish with bloody pates


We charge you, on allegiance to ourself,
pate (n.) head, skull See Topics: Frequency count
skirmish (n.) fight, clash, fracas

To hold your slaughtering hands and keep the peace.

Pray, uncle Gloucester, mitigate this strife.
mitigate (v.) 2 appease, pacify, calm


Nay, if we be forbidden stones,

we'll fall to it with our teeth.


Do what ye dare, we are as resolute.

Skirmish again
broil (n.) 2 quarrel, row, disturbance
peevish (adj.) 1 silly, foolish; or: headstrong, impulsive
skirmish (n.) fight, clash, fracas


You of my household, leave this peevish broil

And set this unaccustomed fight aside.
unaccustomed (adj.) unusual, strange, unfamiliar


My lord, we know your grace to be a man

Just and upright, and for your royal birth

Inferior to none but to his majesty;

And ere that we will suffer such a prince,
suffer (v.) 1 allow, permit, let

So kind a father of the commonweal,
commonweal, commonwealth (n.) state, nation, community, body politic

To be disgraced by an inkhorn mate,
disgrace (v.) insult, dishonour, deny respect [to]
inkhorn (adj.) pedantic, book-scribbling
mate (n.) 2 fellow, individual

We and our wives and children all will fight

And have our bodies slaughtered by thy foes.


Ay, and the very parings of our nails

shall pitch a field when we are dead.
field (n.) 1 field of battle, battleground, field of combat See Topics: Frequency count
pitch (v.) 3 provide sharp stakes for

They begin to skirmish again
skirmish (v.) do battle, wage war


Stay, stay, I say!

And if you love me, as you say you do,

Let me persuade you to forbear awhile.
forbear (v.) 1 stop, cease, desist See Topics: Frequency count


O, how this discord doth afflict my soul!

Can you, my lord of Winchester, behold

My sighs and tears and will not once relent?

Who should be pitiful if you be not?

Or who should study to prefer a peace
prefer (v.) 1 promote, advance, recommend
study (v.) 2 endeavour, take pains, make an effort

If holy churchmen take delight in broils?
broil (n.) 1 turmoil, confused fighting, battle


Yield, my Lord Protector, yield, Winchester,

Except you mean with obstinate repulse
repulse (n.) refusal, rejection, rebuff

To slay your sovereign and destroy the realm.

You see what mischief, and what murder too,
mischief (n.) 3 harm, injury, damage

Hath been enacted through your enmity.
enact (v.) 1 bring about, accomplish, perform

Then be at peace, except ye thirst for blood.


He shall submit, or I will never yield.


Compassion on the King commands me stoop,

Or I would see his heart out ere the priest

Should ever get that privilege of me.
privilege (n.) 2 advantage, superiority, edge


Behold, my lord of Winchester, the Duke

Hath banished moody discontented fury,
moody (adj.) 1 angry, wrathful, rancorous, sullen

As by his smoothed brows it doth appear;
brow (n.) 4 forehead [often plural, referring to the two prominences of the forehead]

Why look you still so stern and tragical?


Here, Winchester, I offer thee my hand.


Fie, uncle Beaufort, I have heard you preach

That malice was a great and grievous sin;

And will not you maintain the thing you teach,

But prove a chief offender in the same?


Sweet King! The Bishop hath a kindly gird.
gird (n.) 1 rebuke, reproof, reproach
kindly (adj.) 3 fitting, suitable

For shame, my lord of Winchester, relent;

What, shall a child instruct you what to do?


Well, Duke of Gloucester, I will yield to thee.

Love for thy love and hand for hand I give.


hollow (adj.) 1 empty, false, insincere

Ay, but, I fear me, with a hollow heart.

(to them) See here, my friends and loving countrymen:

This token serveth for a flag of truce

Betwixt ourselves and all our followers.

So help me God, as I dissemble not.
dissemble (v.) 2 deceive, disguise the truth, pretend


So help me God – (aside) as I intend it not.


O loving uncle, kind Duke of Gloucester,

How joyful am I made by this contract!

Away, my masters! Trouble us no more,

But join in friendship, as your lords have done.


Content; I'll to the surgeon's.
content (adj.) 1 agreeable, willing, ready See Topics: Frequency count


And so will I.


And I will see what physic the
physic (n.) 1 medicine, healing, treatment See Topics: Frequency count

tavern affords.

Exeunt Servingmen and Mayor


Accept this scroll, most gracious sovereign,

Which in the right of Richard Plantagenet

We do exhibit to your majesty.
exhibit (v.) 1 submit for inspection, produce for consideration, propose


Well urged, my Lord of Warwick; for, sweet prince,

An if your grace mark every circumstance,
circumstance (n.) 1 detail(s), particular(s), specifics
mark (v.) 1 note, pay attention [to], take notice [of] See Topics: Frequency count

You have great reason to do Richard right,

Especially for those occasions
occasion (n.) 2 ground, reason, cause, matter

At Eltham Place I told your majesty.


And those occasions, uncle, were of force;
force (n.) 4 compelling weight, power to convince
occasion (n.) 2 ground, reason, cause, matter

Therefore, my loving lords, our pleasure is

That Richard be restored to his blood.
blood (n.) 8 hereditary rights, appropriate rank, rightful title


Let Richard be restored to his blood;
blood (n.) 8 hereditary rights, appropriate rank, rightful title

So shall his father's wrongs be recompensed.
recompense (v.) compensate, redress, make restitution


As will the rest, so willeth Winchester.


If Richard will be true, not that alone
true (adj.) 1 loyal, firm, faithful in allegiance

But all the whole inheritance I give

That doth belong unto the House of York,

From whence you spring by lineal descent.


Thy humble servant vows obedience

And humble service till the point of death.


Stoop then and set your knee against my foot;
stoop (v.) 1 kneel, submit, bow down

And in reguerdon of that duty done
duty (n.) 1 act of loyalty, expression of homage
reguerdon (n.) recompense, reward, repayment

I girt thee with the valiant sword of York.
girt, gird (v.) invest, equip, provide

Rise, Richard, like a true Plantagenet,

And rise created princely Duke of York.


And so thrive Richard as thy foes may fall!

And as my duty springs, so perish they

That grudge one thought against your majesty!
grudge (v.) grumble, complain, be discontented


Welcome, high prince, the mighty Duke of York!


base (adj.) 1 dishonourable, low, unworthy See Topics: Frequency count

Perish, base prince, ignoble Duke of York!


Now will it best avail your majesty
avail (v.) 2 be of use to, help, advantage

To cross the seas and to be crowned in France.

The presence of a king engenders love

Amongst his subjects and his loyal friends,

As it disanimates his enemies.
disanimate (v.) dishearten, discourage, dispirit


When Gloucester says the word, King Henry goes;

For friendly counsel cuts off many foes.


Your ships already are in readiness.

Sennet. Flourish. Exeunt all but Exeter


Ay, we may march in England or in France,

Not seeing what is likely to ensue.

This late dissension grown betwixt the peers
late (adj.) 1 recent, not long past

Burns under feigned ashes of forged love
forged (adj.) 1 false, counterfeit, spurious

And will at last break out into a flame.

As festered members rot but by degree
degree, by little by little, bit by bit

Till bones and flesh and sinews fall away,

So will this base and envious discord breed.
base (adj.) 1 dishonourable, low, unworthy See Topics: Frequency count
breed (v.), past form bred 4 increase, grow, multiply
envious (adj.) malicious, spiteful, vindictive, full of enmity See Topics: Frequency count

And now I fear that fatal prophecy

Which in the time of Henry named the Fifth

Was in the mouth of every sucking babe:

That Henry born at Monmouth should win all

And Henry born at Windsor should lose all;

Which is so plain that Exeter doth wish

His days may finish ere that hapless time.
hapless (adj.) luckless, unfortunate, unlucky


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