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I see some sparkles of a better hope,a
Enter AUMERLE, hastily.
Where is the king ?
I do beseech your majesty, To have some conference with your grace
alone. Boling. Withdraw yourselves, and leave us here alone.
Ereunt PERCY and Lords. What is the matter with our cousin now?
Aum. For ever may my knees grow to the earth, [Kneels.
Boling. Intended, or committed, was this fault ?
Aum. Then give me leave that I may turn the key,
Boling. Have thy desire. [AUMERLE locks the door.
York. [Within.] My liege, beware; look to thyself;
[Drawing. Aum. Stay thy revengeful hand; Thou hast no cause to fear.
York. [Within.] Open the door, secure, fool-hardy king; Shall I, for love, speak treason to thy face? Open the door, or I will break it open.
[BOLING BROKE opens the door.
“ I see some sparks of better hope ; which elder days
May happily bring forth. But who comes here ?" The modern reading is certainly an improvement; and one of the quartos has sparkles.
York. Peruse this writing here, and thou shalt know The treason that
haste forbids me show.
York. It was, villain, ere thy hand did set it down.---
Boling. O heinous, strong, and bold conspiracy !
York. So shall my virtue be his vice's bawd;
let me in. Boling. What shrill-voic'd suppliant makes this eager cry?
Duch. A woman, and thine aunt, great king; 't is I.
Boling. Our scene is alter'd,--from a serious thing,
foul sin. York. If thou do pardon, whosoever pray, More sins, for this forgiveness, prosper may.
a Sheer means separated, unmingled, free from admixture—and thus pure.
This fester'd joint cut off, the rest rests sound;
Duch. O king, believe not this hard-hearted man; Love, loving not itself, none other can.
York. Thou frantic woman, what dost thou make here? Shall thy old dugs once more a traitor rear? Duch. Sweet York, be patient. Hear me, gentle liege.
[Kneels. Boling. Rise up, good aunt. Duch.
Not yet, I thee beseech: For ever will I kneel upon my knees,a And never see day that the happy sees, Till thou give joy; until thou bid me joy, By pardoning Rutland, my transgressing boy. Aum. Unto my mother's prayers I bend my knee. [Kneels. York. Against them both my true joints bended be.
[Kneels. [Ill mayst thou thrive, if thou grant any grace !] b
Duch. Pleads he in earnest? look upon his face;
Boling. Good aunt, stand up.
Nay, do not say-stand up;
a So the folio. Walk upon my knees is the reading of the first quarto. In the Communion Service we have “ meekly kneeling on your knees.”
b This line is not in the folio.
c Blair, in his · Lectures on Rhetoric, compares this argument to a passage in Cicero, where the orator maintains that the coldness of Marcus Callidius, in making an accusation of an attempt to poison him, was a proof that the charge was false. “ An tu, M. Callidi, nisi fingeres, sic ageres ?"'
But pardon, first; and afterwards, stand up.
York. Speak it in French, king: say, pardonnez moy.
Duch. Dost thou teach pardon pardon to destroy ?
Boling. Good aunt, stand up.
I do not sue to stand,
Boling. I pardon him, as heaven shall pardon me.
Duch. O happy vantage of a kneeling knee !
heart I pardon him.
Duch. A god on earth thou art.
Boling. But for our trusty brother-in-law, and the abbot,
Chopping French. Chopping is here used in the sense of changing, which is derived from cheaping, trafficking. We still say a chopping wind. Malone, we apprehend, mistakes when he explains the word by jabbering. York exhorts the king, instead of saying pardon, to say pardonnez moy-excuse me.
The duchess will have pardon as “ 't is current in our land." The chopping French-the French which changes the meaning of words--which sets “ the word itself against the word"---she says,
we do not understand.”
They shall not live within this world, I swear,
Enter EXTON and a Servant.
Exton. Didst thou not mark the king, what words he
spake? “ Have I no friend will rid me of this living fear?” Was it not so? Serv. Those his
words. Exton. “ Have I no friend ?" quoth he: he spake it twice. And urg'd it twice together; did he not?
Serv. He did.
Exton. And, speaking it, he wistly look'd on me; As who should say,—I would thou wert the man That would divorce this terror from my heart; Meaning the king at Pomfret. Come, let's go; I am the king's friend, and will rid his foe. Exeunt.
a Heaven. This is the last passage of the play in which we have substituted, according to the authority of the folio of 1623, the word Heaven for God. It is to be observed that the editors of the folio have retained the name of the Most High when it is used in a peculiarly emphatic or reverential manner, and have not made the change to Heaven indiscriminately. The substitution of this word, in most cases, was made in obedience to a statute of James I. (3 Jac. I. c. 21); and it appears to us that the modern editors have not exercised good taste, to say the least of it, in restoring the readings of the earliest copies, which were issued at a time when the habits of society sanctioned the habitual, and therefore light, employment of the Sacred Name.
b Wistly. So the old copies. Wistfully has crept into the modern editions without authority. Wistly is constantly used by the writers of Shakspere's time,- by Drayton for example :
“ But when more wistly they did her behold."