Henry VIII

by William Shakespeare

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Act Three, Scene II

Enter the Duke of Norfolke, Duke of Suffolke, Lord Surrey, and
  Norf. If you will now vnite in your Complaints,
And force them with a Constancy, the Cardinall
Cannot stand vnder them. If you omit
The offer of this time, I cannot promise,
But that you shall sustaine moe new disgraces,
With these you beare alreadie
   Sur. I am ioyfull
To meete the least occasion, that may giue me
Remembrance of my Father-in-Law, the Duke,
To be reueng'd on him
   Suf. Which of the Peeres
Haue vncontemn'd gone by him, or at least
Strangely neglected? When did he regard
The stampe of Noblenesse in any person
Out of himselfe?
  Cham. My Lords, you speake your pleasures:
What he deserues of you and me, I know:
What we can do to him (though now the time
Giues way to vs) I much feare. If you cannot
Barre his accesse to'th' King, neuer attempt
Any thing on him: for he hath a Witchcraft
Ouer the King in's Tongue
   Nor. O feare him not,
His spell in that is out: the King hath found
Matter against him, that for euer marres
The Hony of his Language. No, he's setled
(Not to come off) in his displeasure
   Sur. Sir,
I should be glad to heare such Newes as this
Once euery houre
   Nor. Beleeue it, this is true.
In the Diuorce, his contrarie proceedings
Are all vnfolded: wherein he appeares,
As I would wish mine Enemy
   Sur. How came
His practises to light?
  Suf. Most strangely
   Sur. O how? how?
  Suf. The Cardinals Letters to the Pope miscarried,
And came to th' eye o'th' King, wherein was read
How that the Cardinall did intreat his Holinesse
To stay the Iudgement o'th' Diuorce; for if
It did take place, I do (quoth he) perceiue
My King is tangled in affection, to
A Creature of the Queenes, Lady Anne Bullen
   Sur. Ha's the King this?
  Suf. Beleeue it
   Sur. Will this worke?
  Cham. The King in this perceiues him, how he coasts
And hedges his owne way. But in this point
All his trickes founder, and he brings his Physicke
After his Patients death; the King already
Hath married the faire Lady
Sur. Would he had

   Suf. May you be happy in your wish my Lord,
For I professe you haue it
   Sur. Now all my ioy
Trace the Coniunction
Suf. My Amen too't

Nor. All mens

   Suf. There's order giuen for her Coronation:
Marry this is yet but yong, and may be left
To some eares vnrecounted. But my Lords
She is a gallant Creature, and compleate
In minde and feature. I perswade me, from her
Will fall some blessing to this Land, which shall
In it be memoriz'd
   Sur. But will the King
Digest this Letter of the Cardinals?
The Lord forbid
Nor. Marry Amen

   Suf. No, no:
There be moe Waspes that buz about his Nose,
Will make this sting the sooner. Cardinall Campeius,
Is stolne away to Rome, hath 'tane no leaue,
Ha's left the cause o'th' King vnhandled, and
Is posted as the Agent of our Cardinall,
To second all his plot. I do assure you,
The King cry'de Ha, at this
   Cham. Now God incense him,
And let him cry Ha, lowder
   Norf. But my Lord
When returnes Cranmer?
  Suf. He is return'd in his Opinions, which
Haue satisfied the King for his Diuorce,
Together with all famous Colledges
Almost in Christendome: shortly (I beleeue)
His second Marriage shall be publishd, and
Her Coronation. Katherine no more
Shall be call'd Queene, but Princesse Dowager,
And Widdow to Prince Arthur
   Nor. This same Cranmer's
A worthy Fellow, and hath tane much paine
In the Kings businesse
   Suff. He ha's, and we shall see him
For it, an Arch-byshop
Nor. So I heare

   Suf. 'Tis so.
Enter Wolsey and Cromwell.
The Cardinall

Nor. Obserue, obserue, hee's moody

   Car. The Packet Cromwell,
Gau't you the King?
  Crom. To his owne hand, in's Bed-chamber
   Card. Look'd he o'th' inside of the Paper?
  Crom. Presently
He did vnseale them, and the first he view'd,
He did it with a Serious minde: a heede
Was in his countenance. You he bad
Attend him heere this Morning
   Card. Is he ready to come abroad?
  Crom. I thinke by this he is
Card. Leaue me a while.

Exit Cromwell.

It shall be to the Dutches of Alanson,
The French Kings Sister; He shall marry her.
Anne Bullen? No: Ile no Anne Bullens for him,
There's more in't then faire Visage. Bullen?
No, wee'l no Bullens: Speedily I wish
To heare from Rome. The Marchionesse of Penbroke?
  Nor. He's discontented
   Suf. Maybe he heares the King
Does whet his Anger to him
   Sur. Sharpe enough,
Lord for thy Iustice
   Car. The late Queenes Gentlewoman?
A Knights Daughter
To be her Mistris Mistris? The Queenes, Queene?
This Candle burnes not cleere, 'tis I must snuffe it,
Then out it goes. What though I know her vertuous
And well deseruing? yet I know her for
A spleeny Lutheran, and not wholsome to
Our cause, that she should lye i'th' bosome of
Our hard rul'd King. Againe, there is sprung vp
An Heretique, an Arch-one; Cranmer, one
Hath crawl'd into the fauour of the King,
And is his Oracle
   Nor. He is vex'd at something.
Enter King, reading of a Scedule.
  Sur. I would 'twer somthing y would fret the string,
The Master-cord on's heart
Suf. The King, the King

   King. What piles of wealth hath he accumulated
To his owne portion? And what expence by'th' houre
Seemes to flow from him? How, i'th' name of Thrift
Does he rake this together? Now my Lords,
Saw you the Cardinall?
  Nor. My Lord, we haue
Stood heere obseruing him. Some strange Commotion
Is in his braine: He bites his lip, and starts,
Stops on a sodaine, lookes vpon the ground,
Then layes his finger on his Temple: straight
Springs out into fast gate, then stops againe,
Strikes his brest hard, and anon, he casts
His eye against the Moone: in most strange Postures
We haue seene him set himselfe
   King. It may well be,
There is a mutiny in's minde. This morning,
Papers of State he sent me, to peruse
As I requir'd: and wot you what I found
There (on my Conscience put vnwittingly)
Forsooth an Inuentory, thus importing
The seuerall parcels of his Plate, his Treasure,
Rich Stuffes and Ornaments of Houshold, which
I finde at such proud Rate, that it out-speakes
Possession of a Subiect
   Nor. It's Heauens will,
Some Spirit put this paper in the Packet,
To blesse your eye withall
   King. If we did thinke
His Contemplation were aboue the earth,
And fixt on Spirituall obiect, he should still
Dwell in his Musings, but I am affraid
His Thinkings are below the Moone, not worth
His serious considering.
King takes his Seat, whispers Louell, who goes to the Cardinall.

  Car. Heauen forgiue me,
Euer God blesse your Highnesse
   King. Good my Lord,
You are full of Heauenly stuffe, and beare the Inuentory
Of your best Graces, in your minde; the which
You were now running o're: you haue scarse time
To steale from Spirituall leysure, a briefe span
To keepe your earthly Audit, sure in that
I deeme you an ill Husband, and am glad
To haue you therein my Companion
   Car. Sir,
For Holy Offices I haue a time; a time
To thinke vpon the part of businesse, which
I beare i'th' State: and Nature does require
Her times of preseruation, which perforce
I her fraile sonne, among'st my Brethren mortall,
Must giue my tendance to
King. You haue said well

   Car. And euer may your Highnesse yoake together,
(As I will lend you cause) my doing well,
With my well saying
   King. 'Tis well said agen,
And 'tis a kinde of good deede to say well,
And yet words are no deeds. My Father lou'd you,
He said he did, and with his deed did Crowne
His word vpon you. Since I had my Office,
I haue kept you next my Heart, haue not alone
Imploy'd you where high Profits might come home,
But par'd my present Hauings, to bestow
My Bounties vpon you
   Car. What should this meane?
  Sur. The Lord increase this businesse
   King. Haue I not made you
The prime man of the State? I pray you tell me,
If what I now pronounce, you haue found true:
And if you may confesse it, say withall
If you are bound to vs, or no. What say you?
  Car. My Soueraigne, I confesse your Royall graces
Showr'd on me daily, haue bene more then could
My studied purposes requite, which went
Beyond all mans endeauors. My endeauors,
Haue euer come too short of my Desires,
Yet fill'd with my Abilities: Mine owne ends
Haue beene mine so, that euermore they pointed
To'th' good of your most Sacred Person, and
The profit of the State. For your great Graces
Heap'd vpon me (poore Vndeseruer) I
Can nothing render but Allegiant thankes,
My Prayres to heauen for you; my Loyaltie
Which euer ha's, and euer shall be growing,
Till death (that Winter) kill it
   King. Fairely answer'd:
A Loyall, and obedient Subiect is
Therein illustrated, the Honor of it
Does pay the Act of it, as i'th' contrary
The fowlenesse is the punishment. I presume,
That as my hand ha's open'd Bounty to you,
My heart drop'd Loue, my powre rain'd Honor, more
On you, then any: So your Hand, and Heart,
Your Braine, and euery Function of your power,
Should, notwithstanding that your bond of duty,
As 'twer in Loues particular, be more
To me your Friend, then any
   Car. I do professe,
That for your Highnesse good, I euer labour'd
More then mine owne: that am, haue, and will be
(Though all the world should cracke their duty to you,
And throw it from their Soule, though perils did
Abound, as thicke as thought could make 'em, and
Appeare in formes more horrid) yet my Duty,
As doth a Rocke against the chiding Flood,
Should the approach of this wilde Riuer breake,
And stand vnshaken yours
   King. 'Tis Nobly spoken:
Take notice Lords, he ha's a Loyall brest,
For you haue seene him open't. Read o're this,
And after this, and then to Breakfast with
What appetite you haue.
Exit King, frowning vpon the Cardinall, the Nobles throng after him smiling, and whispering.

  Car. What should this meane?
What sodaine Anger's this? How haue I reap'd it?
He parted Frowning from me, as if Ruine
Leap'd from his Eyes. So lookes the chafed Lyon
Vpon the daring Huntsman that has gall'd him:
Then makes him nothing. I must reade this paper:
I feare the Story of his Anger. 'Tis so:
This paper ha's vndone me: 'Tis th' Accompt
Of all that world of Wealth I haue drawne together
For mine owne ends, (Indeed to gaine the Popedome,
And fee my Friends in Rome.) O Negligence!
Fit for a Foole to fall by: What crosse Diuell
Made me put this maine Secret in the Packet
I sent the King? Is there no way to cure this?
No new deuice to beate this from his Braines?
I know 'twill stirre him strongly; yet I know
A way, if it take right, in spight of Fortune
Will bring me off againe. What's this? To th' Pope?
The Letter (as I liue) with all the Businesse
I writ too's Holinesse. Nay then, farewell:
I haue touch'd the highest point of all my Greatnesse,
And from that full Meridian of my Glory,
I haste now to my Setting. I shall fall
Like a bright exhalation in the Euening,
And no man see me more.
Enter to Woolsey, the Dukes of Norfolke and Suffolke, the Earle
of Surrey,
and the Lord Chamberlaine.
  Nor. Heare the Kings pleasure Cardinall,
Who commands you
To render vp the Great Seale presently
Into our hands, and to Confine your selfe
To Asher-house, my Lord of Winchesters,
Till you heare further from his Highnesse
   Car. Stay:
Where's your Commission? Lords, words cannot carrie
Authority so weighty
   Suf. Who dare crosse 'em,
Bearing the Kings will from his mouth expressely?
  Car. Till I finde more then will, or words to do it,
(I meane your malice) know, Officious Lords,
I dare, and must deny it. Now I feele
Of what course Mettle ye are molded, Enuy,
How eagerly ye follow my Disgraces
As if it fed ye, and how sleeke and wanton
Ye appeare in euery thing may bring my ruine?
Follow your enuious courses, men of Malice;
You haue Christian warrant for 'em, and no doubt
In time will finde their fit Rewards. That Seale
You aske with such a Violence, the King
(Mine, and your Master) with his owne hand, gaue me:
Bad me enioy it, with the Place, and Honors
During my life; and to confirme his Goodnesse,
Ti'de it by Letters Patents. Now, who'll take it?
  Sur. The King that gaue it
Car. It must be himselfe then

Sur. Thou art a proud Traitor, Priest

   Car. Proud Lord, thou lyest:
Within these fortie houres, Surrey durst better
Haue burnt that Tongue, then saide so
   Sur. Thy Ambition
(Thou Scarlet sinne) robb'd this bewailing Land
Of Noble Buckingham, my Father-in-Law,
The heads of all thy Brother-Cardinals,
(With thee, and all thy best parts bound together)
Weigh'd not a haire of his. Plague of your policie,
You sent me Deputie for Ireland,
Farre from his succour; from the King, from all
That might haue mercie on the fault, thou gau'st him:
Whil'st your great Goodnesse, out of holy pitty,
Absolu'd him with an Axe
   Wol. This, and all else
This talking Lord can lay vpon my credit,
I answer, is most false. The Duke by Law
Found his deserts. How innocent I was
From any priuate malice in his end,
His Noble Iurie, and foule Cause can witnesse.
If I lou'd many words, Lord, I should tell you,
You haue as little Honestie, as Honor,
That in the way of Loyaltie, and Truth,
Toward the King, my euer Roiall Master,
Dare mate a sounder man then Surrie can be,
And all that loue his follies
   Sur. By my Soule,
Your long Coat (Priest) protects you,
Thou should'st feele
My Sword i'th' life blood of thee else. My Lords,
Can ye endure to heare this Arrogance?
And from this Fellow? If we liue thus tamely,
To be thus Iaded by a peece of Scarlet,
Farewell Nobilitie: let his Grace go forward,
And dare vs with his Cap, like Larkes
   Card. All Goodnesse
Is poyson to thy Stomacke
   Sur. Yes, that goodnesse
Of gleaning all the Lands wealth into one,
Into your owne hands (Card'nall) by Extortion:
The goodnesse of your intercepted Packets
You writ to'th Pope, against the King: your goodnesse
Since you prouoke me, shall be most notorious.
My Lord of Norfolke, as you are truly Noble,
As you respect the common good, the State
Of our despis'd Nobilitie, our Issues,
(Whom if he liue, will scarse be Gentlemen)
Produce the grand summe of his sinnes, the Articles
Collected from his life. Ile startle you
Worse then the Sacring Bell, when the browne Wench
Lay kissing in your Armes, Lord Cardinall
   Car. How much me thinkes, I could despise this man,
But that I am bound in Charitie against it
   Nor. Those Articles, my Lord, are in the Kings hand:
But thus much, they are foule ones
   Wol. So much fairer
And spotlesse, shall mine Innocence arise,
When the King knowes my Truth
   Sur. This cannot saue you:
I thanke my Memorie, I yet remember
Some of these Articles, and out they shall.
Now, if you can blush, and crie guiltie Cardinall,
You'l shew a little Honestie
   Wol. Speake on Sir,
I dare your worst Obiections: If I blush,
It is to see a Nobleman want manners
   Sur. I had rather want those, then my head;
Haue at you.
First, that without the Kings assent or knowledge,
You wrought to be a Legate, by which power
You maim'd the Iurisdiction of all Bishops
   Nor. Then, That in all you writ to Rome, or else
To Forraigne Princes, Ego & Rex meus
Was still inscrib'd: in which you brought the King
To be your Seruant
   Suf. Then, that without the knowledge
Either of King or Councell, when you went
Ambassador to the Emperor, you made bold
To carry into Flanders, the Great Seale
   Sur. Item, You sent a large Commission
To Gregory de Cassado, to conclude
Without the Kings will, or the States allowance,
A League betweene his Highnesse, and Ferrara
   Suf. That out of meere Ambition, you haue caus'd
Your holy-Hat to be stampt on the Kings Coine
   Sur. Then, That you haue sent inumerable substance,
(By what meanes got, I leaue to your owne conscience)
To furnish Rome, and to prepare the wayes
You haue for Dignities, to the meere vndooing
Of all the Kingdome. Many more there are,
Which since they are of you, and odious,
I will not taint my mouth with
   Cham. O my Lord,
Presse not a falling man too farre: 'tis Vertue:
His faults lye open to the Lawes, let them
(Not you) correct him. My heart weepes to see him
So little, of his great Selfe
Sur. I forgiue him

   Suf. Lord Cardinall, the Kings further pleasure is,
Because all those things you haue done of late
By your power Legatine within this Kingdome,
Fall into 'th' compasse of a Premunire;
That therefore such a Writ be sued against you,
To forfeit all your Goods, Lands, Tenements,
Castles, and whatsoeuer, and to be
Out of the Kings protection. This is my Charge
   Nor. And so wee'l leaue you to your Meditations
How to liue better. For your stubborne answer
About the giuing backe the Great Seale to vs,
The King shall know it, and (no doubt) shal thanke you.
So fare you well, my little good Lord Cardinall.
Exeunt. all but Wolsey.

  Wol. So farewell, to the little good you beare me.
Farewell? A long farewell to all my Greatnesse.
This is the state of Man; to day he puts forth
The tender Leaues of hopes, to morrow Blossomes,
And beares his blushing Honors thicke vpon him:
The third day, comes a Frost; a killing Frost,
And when he thinkes, good easie man, full surely
His Greatnesse is a ripening, nippes his roote,
And then he fals as I do. I haue ventur'd
Like little wanton Boyes that swim on bladders:
This many Summers in a Sea of Glory,
But farre beyond my depth: my high-blowne Pride
At length broke vnder me, and now ha's left me
Weary, and old with Seruice, to the mercy
Of a rude streame, that must for euer hide me.
Vaine pompe, and glory of this World, I hate ye,
I feele my heart new open'd. Oh how wretched
Is that poore man, that hangs on Princes fauours?
There is betwixt that smile we would aspire too,
That sweet Aspect of Princes, and their ruine,
More pangs, and feares then warres, or women haue;
And when he falles, he falles like Lucifer,
Neuer to hope againe.
Enter Cromwell, standing amazed.
Why how now Cromwell?
  Crom. I haue no power to speake Sir
   Car. What, amaz'd
At my misfortunes? Can thy Spirit wonder
A great man should decline. Nay, and you weep
I am falne indeed
Crom. How does your Grace

   Card. Why well:
Neuer so truly happy, my good Cromwell,
I know my selfe now, and I feele within me,
A peace aboue all earthly Dignities,
A still, and quiet Conscience. The King ha's cur'd me,
I humbly thanke his Grace: and from these shoulders
These ruin'd Pillers, out of pitty, taken
A loade, would sinke a Nauy, (too much Honor.)
O 'tis a burden Cromwel, 'tis a burden
Too heauy for a man, that hopes for Heauen
   Crom. I am glad your Grace,
Ha's made that right vse of it
   Card. I hope I haue:
I am able now (me thinkes)
(Out of a Fortitude of Soule, I feele)
To endure more Miseries, and greater farre
Then my Weake-hearted Enemies, dare offer.
What Newes abroad?
  Crom. The heauiest, and the worst,
Is your displeasure with the King
Card. God blesse him

   Crom. The next is, that Sir Thomas Moore is chosen
Lord Chancellor, in your place
   Card. That's somewhat sodain.
But he's a Learned man. May he continue
Long in his Highnesse fauour, and do Iustice
For Truths-sake, and his Conscience; that his bones,
When he ha's run his course, and sleepes in Blessings,
May haue a Tombe of Orphants teares wept on him.
What more?
  Crom. That Cranmer is return'd with welcome;
Install'd Lord Arch-byshop of Canterbury
Card. That's Newes indeed

   Crom. Last, that the Lady Anne,
Whom the King hath in secrecie long married,
This day was view'd in open, as his Queene,
Going to Chappell: and the voyce is now
Onely about her Corronation
   Card. There was the waight that pull'd me downe.
O Cromwell,
The King ha's gone beyond me: All my Glories
In that one woman, I haue lost for euer.
No Sun, shall euer vsher forth mine Honors,
Or gilde againe the Noble Troopes that waighted
Vpon my smiles. Go get thee from me Cromwel,
I am a poore falne man, vnworthy now
To be thy Lord, and Master. Seeke the King
(That Sun, I pray may neuer set) I haue told him,
What, and how true thou art; he will aduance thee:
Some little memory of me, will stirre him
(I know his Noble Nature) not to let
Thy hopefull seruice perish too. Good Cromwell
Neglect him not; make vse now, and prouide
For thine owne future safety
   Crom. O my Lord,
Must I then leaue you? Must I needes forgo
So good, so Noble, and so true a Master?
Beare witnesse, all that haue not hearts of Iron,
With what a sorrow Cromwel leaues his Lord.
The King shall haue my seruice; but my prayres
For euer, and for euer shall be yours
   Card. Cromwel, I did not thinke to shed a teare
In all my Miseries: But thou hast forc'd me
(Out of thy honest truth) to play the Woman.
Let's dry our eyes: And thus farre heare me Cromwel,
And when I am forgotten, as I shall be,
And sleepe in dull cold Marble, where no mention
Of me, more must be heard of: Say I taught thee;
Say Wolsey, that once trod the wayes of Glory,
And sounded all the Depths, and Shoales of Honor,
Found thee a way (out of his wracke) to rise in:
A sure, and safe one, though thy Master mist it.
Marke but my Fall, and that that Ruin'd me:
Cromwel, I charge thee, fling away Ambition,
By that sinne fell the Angels: how can man then
(The Image of his Maker) hope to win by it?
Loue thy selfe last, cherish those hearts that hate thee;
Corruption wins not more then Honesty.
Still in thy right hand, carry gentle Peace
To silence enuious Tongues. Be iust, and feare not;
Let all the ends thou aym'st at, be thy Countries,
Thy Gods, and Truths. Then if thou fall'st (O Cromwell)
Thou fall'st a blessed Martyr.
Serue the King: And prythee leade me in:
There take an Inuentory of all I haue,
To the last peny, 'tis the Kings. My Robe,
And my Integrity to Heauen, is all,
I dare now call mine owne. O Cromwel, Cromwel,
Had I but seru'd my God, with halfe the Zeale
I seru'd my King: he would not in mine Age
Haue left me naked to mine Enemies
Crom. Good Sir, haue patience

   Card. So I haue. Farewell
The Hopes of Court, my Hopes in Heauen do dwell.



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