Was perhaps produced not long before 1597, the date of the earliest quarto. -So remarkable are the variations presented to us by the old copies of King Richard III.,—so greatly does the text of the quartos (or, properly speaking, that of the earliest quarto) differ from the text of the folio, that a modern editor, who must necessarily give an eclectic text of this tragedy, is not a little perplexed in his choice of readings. Nor is the difference in question confined to words and phrases, to amplification of sentences, and appropriation of speeches; for the quartos contain important passages which are not found in the folio, while the folio, on the other hand, supplies passages no less important which are wanting in the quartos.—The text of the folio is, on the whole, inferior to that of the quartos, and, as Malone observes in a note, would seem to have been tampered with by the players : accordingly I now adhere to the quartos in sundry places where my former edition exhibited the text of the folio.-In this tragedy Shakespeare cannot be said to have any obligations to an earlier play on the same subject by an unknown author, -The True Tragedie of Richard the Third: wherein is showne the death of Edward the Fourth, with the smothering of the two yoong Princes in the Tower : with a lamentable ende of Shores wife, an example for all wicked

And lastly the coniunction and ioyning of the two noble Houses, Lancaster and Yorke. As it was playd by the Queenes Maiesties Players, 1594, 4to (reprinted for the Shakespeare Society in 1844).



EDWARD, Prince Wales, afterwards King Edward V.,}

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KING EDWARD the Fourth.

sons to RICHARDduke York,

the King. GEORGE, duke of Clarence,

| brothers to RICHARD, duke of Gloster, afterwards King Richard III., } the King. A young Son of Clarence. Henry, earl of Richmond, afterwards King Henry VII. CARDINAL BOURCHIER, archbishop of Canterbury. THOMAS ROTHERHAM, archbishop of York. John Morton, bishop of Ely. DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM. DUKE OF NORFOLK. EARL OF SURREY, his son. EARL RIVERs, brother to King Edward's Queen. MARQUESS OF DORSET and LORD GREY, her sons. EARL OF OXFORD. LORD HASTINGS. LORD STANLEY. LORD LOVEL. SiR THOMAS VAUGHAN. SIR RICHARD RATCLIFF. SIR WILLIAM CATESBY. SIR JAMES TYRREL. SIR JAMES BLUNT. SIR WALTER HERBERT. SIR ROBERT BRAKENBURY, lieutenant of the Tower. CHRISTOPHER URSWICK, a priest. Another Priest. Lord Mayor of London. Sheriff of Wiltshire. TRESSEL and BERKELEY, attending on Lady Anne. ELIZABETH, queen to King Edward IV. MARGARET, widow of King Henry VI. DUCHESS OF YORK, mother to King Edward IV., Clarence, and Gloster. LADY ANNE, widow of Edward, prince of Wales, son to King Henry

VI.; afterwards married to Richard, duke of Gloster. A young Daughter of Clarence.

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Lords and other Attendants; a Pursuivant, Scrivener, Citizens,

Murderers, Messengers, Soldiers, &c.




SCENE I. London. A street.


Glo. Now is the winter of our discontent Made glorious summer by this sun of York; And all the clouds that lour'd upon our house In the deep bosom of the ocean buried. Now are our brows bound with victorious wreaths; Our bruised arms hung up for monuments ; Our stern alarums chang'd to merry meetings, Our dreadful marches to delightful measures. Grim-visag'd war hath smooth'd his wrinkled front; And now-instead of mounting barbèd steeds To fright the souls of fearful adversariesHe capers nimbly in a lady's chamber To the lascivious pleasing of a lute.

a But I, that am not shap'd for sportive tricks, Nor made to court an amorous looking-glass; I, that am rudely stamp'd, and want love's majesty To strut before a wanton ambling nymph; I, that am curtail'd of this fair proportion, Cheated of feature by dissembling nature, Deform'd, unfinish'd, sent before my time Into this breathing world, scarce half made up, And that so lamely and unfashionable, That dogs bark at me as I halt by them ;

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Why, I, in this weak piping time of peace,
Have no delight to pass away the time,
Unless to spy my shadow in the sun,
And descant on mine own deformity :
And therefore-since I cannot prove a lover,
To entertain these fair well-spoken days-
I am determined to prove a villain,
And hate the idle pleasures of these days.
Plots have I laid, inductions dangerous,
By drunken prophecies, libels, and dreams,
To set my brother Clarence and the king
In deadly hate the one against the other:
And, if King Edward be as true and just
As I am subtle, false, and treacherous,
This day should Clarence closely be mew'd up,
About a prophecy, which says that G
Of Edward's heirs the murderer shall be.
Dive, thoughts, down to my soul :-here Clarence comes.

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Enter CLARENCE guarded, and BRAKENBURY.
Brother, good day: what means this armèd guard
That waits upon your grace?

His majesty,
Tendering my person's safety, hath appointed
This conduct to convey me to the Tower.

Glo. Upon what cause?

Because my name is George.
Glo. Alack, my lord, that fault is none of yours;
He should, for that, commit your godfathers :
O, belike his majesty hath some intent
That you shall be new-christen'd in the Tower.
But what's the matter, Clarence? may I know?

Clar. Yea, Richard, when I know; for I protest
As yet I do not: but, as I can learn,
He hearkens after prophecies and dreams;
And from the cross-row plucks the letter G,
And says a wizard told him that by G
His issue disinherited should be ;
And for my name of George begins with G,
It follows in his thought that I am he.

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