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If any spark of life be yet remaining, Down, down to hell; and fay,-I fent thee thither, [Stabs him again. I, that have neither pity, love, nor fear.Indeed, 'tis true, that Henry told me of; For I have often heard my mother fay, I came into the world with my legs forward: Had I not reafon, think ye, to make hafte, • And feek their ruin that ufurp'd our right? The midwife wonder'd; and the women cry'd, O, Jefus blefs us, he is born with teeth!
And fo I was; which plainly fignify'dThat I fhould fnarl, and bite, and play the dog. Then, fince the heavens have fhap'd my body fo, Let hell make crook'd my mind, to answer it. I have no brother, I am like no brother: And this word-love, which greybeards call divine, Be refident in men like one another, And not in me; I am myself alone.— Clarence, beware; thou keep'ft me from the light; But I will fort a pitchy day for thee: For I will buz abroad fuch prophecies, • That Edward shall be fearful of his life; And then, to purge his fear, I'll be thy death. King Henry, and the prince his fon, are gone: Clarence, thy turn is next; and then the reft; Counting myself but bad, till I be best.-
I'll throw thy body in another room, And triumph, Henry, in thy day of doom. [Exit.
The fame. A Room in the Palace.
King EDWARD is discovered fitting on his throne; Queen ELIZABETH with the infant Prince, CLARENCE, GLOSTER, HASTINGS, and Others, near him.
K. Edw. Once more we fit in England's royal throne,
Re-purchas'd with the blood of enemies.
What valiant foemen, like to autumn's corn,
Two Cliffords, as the father and the fon,
That in their chains fetter'd the kingly lion,
reap the gain. Glo. I'll blaft his harveft, if your head were
K. Edw. Clarence, and Glofter, love my lovely queen;
And kifs your princely nephew, brothers both. Clar. The duty, that I owe unto your majesty, I feal upon the lips of this fweet babe.
K. Edw. Thanks, noble Clarence; worthy brother, thanks.
Glo. And, that I love the tree from whence thou sprang'ft,
Witness the loving kifs I give the fruit :To say the truth, fo Judas kifs'd his master;
And cry'd-all hail! when as he meant -all harm.
K. Edw. Now am I feated as my foul delights, Having my country's peace, and brothers' loves. Clar. What will your grace have done with Margaret?
Reignier, her father, to the king of France
And now what refts, but that we spend the time
The three parts of King HENRY VI. are suspected, by Mr. Theobald, of being supposititious, and are declared, by Dr. Warburton, to be certainly not Shakspeare's. Mr. Theobald's suspicion arises from some obsolete words; but the phraseology is like the rest of our author's style, and single words, of which however I do not observe more than two, can conclude little.
Dr. Warburton gives no reason, but I suppose him to judge upon deeper principles and more comprehensive views, and to draw his opinion from the general effect and spirit of the composition, which he thinks inferior to the other historical plays.
From mere inferiority nothing can be inferred; in the productions of wit there will be inequality. Sometimes judgement will err, and sometimes the matter itself will defeat the artist. Of every author's works one will be the best, and one will be the worst. The colours are not equally pleasing, nor the attitudes equally graceful, in all the pictures of Titian or Reynolds.
Dissimilitude of style and heterogeneousness of sentiment, may sufficiently show that a work does not really belong to the reputed author. But in these plays no such marks of spuriousness are found. The diction, the versification, and the figures, are Shakspeare's. These plays, considered, without regard to characters and incidents, merely as narratives in verse, are more happily conceived and more accurately finished than those of King JOHN, RICHARD II. or the tragic scenes of King HENRY IV. and V. If we take these plays from Shakspeare, to whom shall they be given? What author of that age had the same easiness of expression and fluency of numbers ?
Of these three plays I think the second the best. The truth is, that they have not sufficient variety of action, for the incidents are too often of the same kind; yet many of the characters are well discriminated. King Henry, and his queen, king Edward, the duke of Gloucester, and the earl of Warwick, are very strongly and distinctly painted. JOHNSON..