Enter two Gentlemen, meeting
O, God save ye! Even to the hall, to hear what shall become Of the great Duke of Buckingham.
I'll save you That labour, sir. All's now done, but the ceremony Of bringing back the prisoner.
I'll tell you in a little. The great duke Came to the bar; where to his accusations He pleaded still not guilty and alleged Many sharp reasons to defeat the law. The king's attorney on the contrary Urged on the examinations, proofs, confessions Of divers witnesses; which the duke desired To have brought viva voce to his face: At which appear'd against him his surveyor; Sir Gilbert Peck his chancellor; and John Car, Confessor to him; with that devil-monk, Hopkins, that made this mischief.
The same. All these accused him strongly; which he fain Would have flung from him, but, indeed, he could not: And so his peers, upon this evidence, Have found him guilty of high treason. Much He spoke, and learnedly, for life; but all Was either pitied in him or forgotten.
When he was brought again to the bar, to hear His knell rung out, his judgment, he was stirr'd With such an agony, he sweat extremely, And something spoke in choler, ill, and hasty: But he fell to himself again, and sweetly In all the rest show'd a most noble patience.
'Tis likely, By all conjectures: first, Kildare's attainder, Then deputy of Ireland; who removed, Earl Surrey was sent thither, and in haste too, Lest he should help his father.
At his return No doubt he will requite it. This is noted, And generally, whoever the king favours, The cardinal instantly will find employment, And far enough from court too.
All the commons Hate him perniciously, and, o' my conscience, Wish him ten fathom deep: this duke as much They love and dote on; call him bounteous Buckingham, The mirror of all courtesy;—
Enter Buckingham from his arraignment; tip-staves before him; the axe with the edge towards him; halberds on each side: accompanied with Lovell, Vaux, Sands, and common people
All good people, You that thus far have come to pity me, Hear what I say, and then go home and lose me. I have this day received a traitor's judgment, And by that name must die: yet, heaven bear witness, And if I have a conscience, let it sink me, Even as the axe falls, if I be not faithful! The law I bear no malice for my death; 'T has done, upon the premises, but justice: But those that sought it I could wish more Christians: Be what they will, I heartily forgive 'em: Yet let 'em look they glory not in mischief, Nor build their evils on the graves of great men; For then my guiltless blood must cry against 'em. For further life in this world I ne'er hope, Nor will I sue, although the king have mercies More than I dare make faults. You few that loved me, And dare be bold to weep for Buckingham, His noble friends and fellows, whom to leave Is only bitter to him, only dying, Go with me, like good angels, to my end; And, as the long divorce of steel falls on me, Make of your prayers one sweet sacrifice, And lift my soul to heaven. Lead on, o' God's name.
I do beseech your grace, for charity, If ever any malice in your heart Were hid against me, now to forgive me frankly.
Sir Thomas Lovell, I as free forgive you As I would be forgiven: I forgive all; There cannot be those numberless offences 'Gainst me, that I cannot take peace with: no black envy Shall mark my grave. Commend me to his grace; And if he speak of Buckingham, pray, tell him You met him half in heaven: my vows and prayers Yet are the king's; and, till my soul forsake, Shall cry for blessings on him: may he live Longer than I have time to tell his years! Ever beloved and loving may his rule be! And when old time shall lead him to his end, Goodness and he fill up one monument!
To the water side I must conduct your grace; Then give my charge up to Sir Nicholas Vaux, Who undertakes you to your end.
Prepare there, The duke is coming: see the barge be ready; And fit it with such furniture as suits The greatness of his person.
Nay, Sir Nicholas, Let it alone; my state now will but mock me. When I came hither, I was lord high constable And Duke of Buckingham; now, poor Edward Bohun: Yet I am richer than my base accusers, That never knew what truth meant: I now seal it; And with that blood will make 'em one day groan for't. My noble father, Henry of Buckingham, Who first raised head against usurping Richard, Flying for succor to his servant Banister, Being distress'd, was by that wretch betray'd, And without trial fell; God's peace be with him! Henry the Seventh succeeding, truly pitying My father's loss, like a most royal prince, Restored me to my honours, and, out of ruins, Made my name once more noble. Now his son, Henry the Eighth, life, honour, name and all That made me happy at one stroke has taken For ever from the world. I had my trial, And, must needs say, a noble one; which makes me, A little happier than my wretched father: Yet thus far we are one in fortunes: both Fell by our servants, by those men we loved most; A most unnatural and faithless service! Heaven has an end in all: yet, you that hear me, This from a dying man receive as certain: Where you are liberal of your loves and counsels Be sure you be not loose; for those you make friends And give your hearts to, when they once perceive The least rub in your fortunes, fall away Like water from ye, never found again But where they mean to sink ye. All good people, Pray for me! I must now forsake ye: the last hour Of my long weary life is come upon me. Farewell: And when you would say something that is sad, Speak how I fell. I have done; and God forgive me!
Exeunt Buckingham and Train
O, this is full of pity! Sir, it calls, I fear, too many curses on their beads That were the authors.
If the duke be guiltless, 'Tis full of woe: yet I can give you inkling Of an ensuing evil, if it fall, Greater than this.
I am confident, You shall, sir: did you not of late days hear A buzzing of a separation Between the king and Katharine?
Yes, but it held not: For when the king once heard it, out of anger He sent command to the lord mayor straight To stop the rumor, and allay those tongues That durst disperse it.
But that slander, sir, Is found a truth now: for it grows again Fresher than e'er it was; and held for certain The king will venture at it. Either the cardinal, Or some about him near, have, out of malice To the good queen, possess'd him with a scruple That will undo her: to confirm this too, Cardinal Campeius is arrived, and lately; As all think, for this business.
'Tis the cardinal; And merely to revenge him on the emperor For not bestowing on him, at his asking, The archbishopric of Toledo, this is purposed.
I think you have hit the mark: but is't not cruel That she should feel the smart of this? The cardinal Will have his will, and she must fall.