A monologue from Act IV, Scene iv
by: William Shakespeare
|NOTE: Richard III was originally published in 1597. It is now a public domain work and may be performed without royalties.
- KING RICHARD: Look what is done cannot be now amended:
- Men shall deal unadvisedly sometimes,
- Which after-hours gives leisure to repent.
- If I did take the kingdom from your sons,
- To make amends I'll give it to your daughter;
- If I have killed the issue of your womb,
- To quicken your increase  I will beget
- Mine issue of your blood upon your daughter.
- A grandam's name is little less in love
- Than is the doting title of a mother;
- They are as children but one step below,
- Even of your metal, of your very blood,
- Of all one pain, save for a night of groans
- Endured of her for whom you bid like sorrow:
- Your children were vexation to your youth,
- But mine shall be a comfort to your age.
- The loss you have is but a son being king,
- And by that loss your daughter is made queen.
- I cannot make you what amends I would;
- Therefore accept such kindness as I can.
- Dorset your son, that with a fearful soul
- Leads discontented steps in foreign soil,
- This fair alliance quickly shall call home
- To high promotions and great dignity.
- The king, that calls your beauteous daughter wife,
- Familiarly shall call thy Dorset brother:
- Again shall you be mother to a king,
- And all the ruins of distressful times
- Repaired with double riches of content.
- What! we have many goodly days to see:
- The liquid drops of tears that you have shed
- Shall come again, transformed to orient pearl,
- Advantaging their love with interest
- Of ten times double gain of happiness.
- Go then, my mother; to thy daughter go;
- Make bold her bashful years with your experience;
- Prepare her ears to hear a wooer's tale;
- Put in her tender heart th' aspiring flame
- Of golden sovereignty; acquaint the princess
- With the sweet silent hours of marriage joys;
- And when this arm of mine hath chastisèd
- The petty rebel, dull-brained Buckingham,
- Bound with triumphant garlands will I come
- And lead thy daughter to a conqueror's bed;
- To whom I will retail my conquest won,
- And she shall be sole victoress, Caesar's Caesar.
1 Give new life to your offspring.