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Whose hot incursions, and great name in arms,
Holds from all soldiers chief majority,
And military title capital,

Through all the kingdoms that acknowledge Christ?
Thrice hath this Hotspur Mars in swathing clothes,
This infant warrior in his enterprises
Discomfited great Douglas: ta'en him once,
Enlarg'd him, and made a friend of him,
To fill the mouth of deep defiance up,

And shake the peace and safety of our throne.
And what say you to this? Percy, Northumberland,
The archbishop's grace of York, Douglas, Mortimer,
Capitulate against us, and are up.

But wherefore do I tell these news to thee?
Why, Harry, do I tell thee of my foes,
Which art my near'st and dearest enemy ?

Thou that art like enough,-through vassal fear,
Base inclination, and the start of spleen,—
To fight against me under Percy's pay,
To dog his heels, and court'sy at his frowns,
To show how much degenerate thou art?

P. Hen. Do not think so, you shall not find it so; And Heaven forgive them, that have so much sway'd Your majesty's good thoughts away from me!

I will redeem all this on Percy's head,
And, in the closing of some glorious day,
Be bold to tell you, that I am your son;
When I will wear a garment all of blood,
And stain my favors in a bloody mask,

Which, wash'd away, shall scour my shame with it.
And that shall be the day, whene'er it lights,
That this same child of honor and renown,
This gallant Hotspur, this all-praised knight,
And your unthought-of Harry, chance to meet.
For every honor sitting on his helm,

Would they were multitudes; and on my head
My shames redoubled! for the time will come,
That I shall make this northern youth exchange
His glorious deeds for my indignities.
Percy is but my factor, good my lord,
To engross up glorious deeds on my behalf;
And I will call him to so strict account,
That he shall render every glory up
Yea, even the slightest worship of his time,
Or I will tear the reckoning from his heart.
This, in the name of Heaven, I promise here:
The which if it be pleas'd I shall perform,
I do beseech your majesty, may salve

The long-grown wounds of my intemperance:
If not, the end of life cancels all bands;
And I will die a hundred thousand deaths,
Ere break the smallest parcel of this vow.

K. Hen. A hundred thousand rebels die in this : Thou shalt have charge, and sovereign trust, herein.


Many of the incidents of this Play, and much of the dialogue, were taken by Shakspeare from chronicles of Hollingshed and Stowe, who were themselves indebted to "Carendish's Life of Wolsey" for most of the particulars they gave of the Cardinal's history.

Shakspeare has depicted the character of the gentle and noble-hearted Katharine of Arragon, with such felicitous skill, that the scenes in which she is introduced are considered among the finest efforts of the Poet's genius.

The haughty Wolsey, is also a powerfully drawn picture. Our selections are devoted to the display of these two master-pieces of historical dramatic composition.





CAPUCIUS, Ambassador from the Emperor, Charles V.

CRANMER, Archbishop of Canterbury.





Lord Chamberlain.

Lord Chancellor.

GARDINER, Bishop of Winchester.




Secretaries to Wolsey.

CROMWELL, servant to Wolsey.

GRIFFITH, Gentleman- Usher to Queen Katharine.
Three other Gentlemen.

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Queen KatharinE, wife to King Henry, afterwards divorced.
ANNE BULLEN, her Maid of Honor, afterwards Queen.

An old Lady, friend to Anne Bullen.

PATIENCE, woman to Queen Katharine.

Several Lords and Ladies in the Dumb Shows; Women attending upon the Queen; Spirits which appear to her; Scribes, Officers, Guards, and other Attendants.



Queen Katharine incurred the jealousy and hatred of Wolsey, by her opposition to his overbearing arrogance, and the exactions he was continually enforcing on the people. Shakspeare introduces the Queen, as a suitor to the King, on the subject of these oppressions of the people.

SCENE II.-The Council-Chamber.

Cornets. Enter KING HENRY, CARDINAL WOLSEY, the Lords of the
Council, Sir THOMAS LOVELL, Officers, and Attendants.
KING enters, leaning on the CARDINAL's shoulder.

K. Hen. My life itself, and the best heart of it,

Thanks you for this great care: I stood i' the level
Of a full-charged confederacy, and give thanks

To you that chok'd it.


The KING takes his State. The Lords of the Council take their several places. The CARDINAL places himself under the KING's feet, on his right.side.

A noise within, crying, Room for the Queen! Enter the QUEEN, ushered by the DUKES OF NORFOLK and SUFFOLK: she kneels. The KING rises from his State, takes her up, kisses, and places her by


Q. Kath. Nay, we must longer kneel; I am a suitor.
K. Hen. Arise, and take place by us :-Half your suit

Never name to us; you have half our power;

The other moiety, ere you ask, is given;

Repeat your will, and take it.

Q. Kath.

Thank your majesty.

That you would love yourself; and, in that love,
Not unconsider'd leave your honor, nor

The dignity of your office, is the point
Of my petition.

K. Hen.

Lady mine, proceed.

Q. Kath. I am solicited, not by a few,

And those of true condition, that your subjects

Are in great grievance: there have been commissions
Sent down among them, which have flaw'd the heart
Of all their loyalties:wherein, although,

My good lord cardinal, they vent reproaches

Most bitterly on you, as putter-on

Of these exactions, yet the king our master,

(Whose honor heaven shield from soil!) even he escapes not

Language unmannerly, yea, such which breaks

The sides of loyalty, and almost appears

In loud rebellion.


Not almost appears,

It doth appear for upon these taxations,
The clothiers all, not able to maintain
The many to them 'longing, have put off
The spinsters, carders, fullers, weavers, who,
Unfit for other life, compell'd by hunger,
And lack of other means, in desperate manner
Daring the event to the teeth, are all in uproar,
And Danger serves among them.

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Wherein? and what taxation ?-My lord cardinal,
You that are blam'd for it alike with us,
Know you of this taxation?


Please you, sir,

I know but of a single part, in aught

Pertains to the state; and front but in that file
Where others tell steps with me.

Q. Kath.

No, my lord,

you frame

You know no more than others: but
Things, that are known alike; which are not wholesome
To those which would not know them, and yet must
Perforce be their acquaintance. These exactions
Whereof my sovereign would have note, they are
Most pestilent to the hearing; and to bear them,
The back is sacrifice to the load. They say,
They are devis'd by you; or else you suffer
Too hard an exclamation.

K. Hen.

Still exaction!

The nature of it? In what kind, let's know,
Is this exaction?

Q. Kath.

I am much too venturous

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