Warkworth. Before Northumberland's Castle.

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Enter Rumour, painted full of Tongues. Rum. Open your ears ; For which of you will

stop The vent of hearing, when loud Rumour speaks ? I, from the orient to the drooping west, Making the wind my post-horse, still unfold The acts commenced on this ball of earth : Upon my tongues continual slanders ride; The which in every language I pronounce, Stuffing the ears of men with false reports. I speak of peace, while covert enmity, Under the smile of safety, wounds the world : And who but Rumour, who but only I, Make fearful musters, and prepar'd defence; Whilst the big year, swol'n with some other grief, Is thought with child by the stern tyrant war, And no such matter? Rumour is a pipe Blown by surmises, jealousies, conjectures; And of so easy and so plain a stop, That the blunt monster with uncounted heads, The still-discordant wavering multitude, Can play upon it. But what need I thus My well-known body to anatomize Among my houshold? Why is Rumour here? I run before king Harry's victory; Who, in a bloody field by Shrewsbury, Hath beaten down young Hotspur, and his troops, Quenching the flame of bold rebellion, Even with the rebels' blood. But what mean I To speak so true at first? my office is To noise abroad, - that Harry Monmouth fell


Under the wrath of noble Hotspur's sword;
And that the king before the Douglas' rage
Stoop'd his anointed head as low as death.
This have I rumour'd through the peasant towns
Between that royal field of Shrewsbury
And this worm-eaten hold of ragged stone,
Where Hotspur's father, old Northumberland,
Lies crafty-sick: the posts come tiring on,
And not a man of them brings other news
Than they have learn'd of me; From Rumour's

tongues They bring smooth comforts false, worse than true wrongs.







Warkworth. Before Northumberland's Castle. The Porter before the Gate; Enter Lord

L. Bard. Who keeps the gate here, ho?--

Where is the earl?
Port. What shall I say you are ?
L. Bard.

Tell thou the earl,
That the lord Bardolph doth attend him here.
Port. His lordship is walk'd forth into the or-

chard ; Please it your honour, knock but at the gate, And he himself will answer.


Here comes the earl. North. What news, lord Bardolph ? every minute


Should be the father of some stratagem':
The times are wild; contention, like a horse
Full of high feeding, madly hath broke loose,
And bears down all before him.

! Important or dreadful event.

L. Bard.

Noble earl, I bring you certain news from Shrewsbury.

North. Good, an heaven will!

L. Bard. As good as heart can wish : The king is almost wounded to the death; And, in the fortune of my lord your son, Prince Harry slain outright ; and both the Blunts Kill'd by the hand of Douglas : young Prince John, And Westmoreland, and Stafford, fled the field; And Harry Monmouth's brawn, the hulk sir John, Is prisoner to your son: O, such a day, So fought, so follow'd, and so fairly won, Came not till now, to dignify the times, Since Cæsar's fortunes ! North.

How is this deriv'd ? Saw you the field ? came


from Shrewsbury ? L. Bard. I spake with one, my lord, that came

from thence; A gentleman well bred, and of good name, That freely render'd me these news for true. North. Here comes my servant, Travers, whom I

sent On Tuesday last to listen after news.

L. Bard. My lord, I over-rode him on the way; And he is furnish'd with no certainties, More than he haply may retail from me.


North. Now, Travers, what good tidings come

with you?

Tra. My lord, sir John Umfrevile turn’d me back With joyful tidings; and, being better hors'd, Out-rode me. After him, came, spurring hard, A gentleman almost forspent with speed, That stopp'd by me to breathe his bloodied horse : He ask'd the way to Chester; and of him I did demand, what news from Shrewsbury. He told me, that rebellion had bad luck,

And that young Harry Percy's spur was cold :
With that he gave his able horse the head,
And, bending forward, struck his armed heels
Against the panting sides of his poor jade
Up to the rowel-head; and, starting so,
He seem'd in running to devour the way,
Staying no longer question.

Ha! Again.
Said he, young Harry Percy's spur was cold ?
Of Hotspur, coldspur? that rebellion
Had met ill-luck!
L. Bard.
My lord, I'll tell

you If my young lord

your son have not the day,
Upon mine honour, for a silken point
I'll give my barony: never talk of it.
North. Why should the gentleman, that rode by

Give then such instances of loss ?
L. Bard.

Who, he ?
He was some hilding 3 fellow, that had stol'n
The horse he rode on; and, upon my life,
Spoke at a venture. Look, here comes more news.




North. Yea, this man's brow, like to a title-leaf,
Foretells the nature of a tragick volume :
So looks the strond, whereon the imperious flood
Hath left a witness'd usurpation. -
Say, Morton, didst thou come from Shrewsbury?

Mor. I ran from Shrewsbury, my noble lord;
Where hateful death put on his ugliest mask,
To fright our party.

How doth my son, and brother ?
Thou tremblest; and the whiteness in thy cheek
Is apter than thy tongue to tell thy errand.
Even such a man, so faint, so spiritless,

2. Lace tagged

3 Hilderling, base, cowardly.

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