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Monologues for Men


Now, by the holy Mother of our Lord,

The citizens are mum, say not a word.

I did, with his contract with Lady Lucy,

And his contract by deputy in France,

Th’ unsatiate greediness of his desire,

And his enforcement of the city wives,

His tyranny for trifles, his own bastardy,

As being got, your father then in France,

And his resemblance, being not like the Duke.

Withal I did infer your lineaments,

Being the right idea of your father,

Both in your form and nobleness of mind;

Laid open all your victories in Scotland,

Your discipline in war, wisdom in peace,

Your bounty, virtue, fair humility;

Indeed, left nothing fitting for your purpose

Untouch’d or slightly handled in discourse.

And when mine oratory drew to an end,

I bid them that did love their country’s good

Cry, “God save Richard, England’s royal king!”

No, so God help me, they spake not a word,

But like dumb statuës, or breathing stones,

Star’d each on other, and look’d deadly pale;

Which when I saw, I reprehended them,

And ask’d the Mayor what meant this willful silence.

His answer was, the people were not used

To be spoke to but by the Recorder.

Then he was urg’d to tell my tale again:

“Thus saith the Duke, thus hath the Duke inferr’d”—

But nothing spake in warrant from himself.

When he had done, some followers of mine own,

At lower end of the hall, hurl’d up their caps,

And some ten voices cried, “God save King Richard!”

And thus I took the vantage of those few:

“Thanks, gentle citizens and friends,” quoth I,

“This general applause and cheerful shout

Argues your wisdoms and your love to Richard”—

And even here brake off, and came away.

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