Shakespeare - Henry VIII

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  • 7/31/2019 Shakespeare - Henry VIII


    Henry VIIIShakespeare, William

    Published: 1603Type(s): History, PlaysSource:


  • 7/31/2019 Shakespeare - Henry VIII


    About Shakespeare:

    William Shakespeare (baptised 26 April 1564 died 23 April 1616) wasan English poet and playwright, widely regarded as the greatest writerin the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist. He is of-

    ten called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon" (or simply"The Bard"). His surviving works consist of 38 plays, 154 sonnets, twolong narrative poems, and several other poems. His plays have beentranslated into every major living language, and are performed more of-ten than those of any other playwright. Shakespeare was born and raisedin Stratford-upon-Avon. At the age of 18 he married Anne Hathaway,who bore him three children: Susanna, and twins Hamnet and Judith.Between 1585 and 1592 he began a successful career in London as an act-or, writer, and part owner of the playing company the Lord

    Chamberlain's Men, later known as the King's Men. He appears to haveretired to Stratford around 1613, where he died three years later. Few re-cords of Shakespeare's private life survive, and there has been consider-able speculation about such matters as his sexuality, religious beliefs,and whether the works attributed to him were written by others.Shakespeare produced most of his known work between 1590 and 1613.His early plays were mainly comedies and histories, genres he raised tothe peak of sophistication and artistry by the end of the sixteenth cen-tury. Next he wrote mainly tragedies until about 1608, including Hamlet,King Lear, and Macbeth, considered some of the finest examples in theEnglish language. In his last phase, he wrote tragicomedies, also knownas romances, and collaborated with other playwrights. Many of his playswere published in editions of varying quality and accuracy during hislifetime, and in 1623 two of his former theatrical colleagues publishedthe First Folio, a collected edition of his dramatic works that included all

    but two of the plays now recognised as Shakespeare's. Shakespeare wasa respected poet and playwright in his own day, but his reputation did

    not rise to its present heights until the nineteenth century. The Ro-mantics, in particular, acclaimed Shakespeare's genius, and theVictorians hero-worshipped Shakespeare with a reverence that GeorgeBernard Shaw called "bardolatry". In the twentieth century, his work wasrepeatedly adopted and rediscovered by new movements in scholarshipand performance. His plays remain highly popular today and are con-sistently performed and reinterpreted in diverse cultural and politicalcontexts throughout the world. Source: Wikipedia

    Also available on Feedbooks for Shakespeare:


  • 7/31/2019 Shakespeare - Henry VIII


    Romeo and Juliet (1597) Hamlet (1599) Macbeth (1606) A Midsummer Night's Dream (1596)

    Julius Caesar (1599) Othello (1603) King Lear (1606) Much Ado About Nothing (1600) The Merchant of Venice (1598) Antony and Cleopatra (1623)

    Note: This book is brought to you by Feedbooks.

    Strictly for personal use, do not use this file for commercial purposes.

  • 7/31/2019 Shakespeare - Henry VIII


    Act I


    I come no more to make you laugh: things now,That bear a weighty and a serious brow,Sad, high, and working, full of state and woe,Such noble scenes as draw the eye to flow,We now present. Those that can pity, hereMay, if they think it well, let fall a tear;The subject will deserve it. Such as giveTheir money out of hope they may believe,May here find truth too. Those that come to see

    Only a show or two, and so agreeThe play may pass, if they be still and willing,I'll undertake may see away their shillingRichly in two short hours. Only theyThat come to hear a merry bawdy play,A noise of targets, or to see a fellowIn a long motley coat guarded with yellow,Will be deceived; for, gentle hearers, know,To rank our chosen truth with such a show

    As fool and fight is, beside forfeitingOur own brains, and the opinion that we bring,To make that only true we now intend,Will leave us never an understanding friend.Therefore, for goodness' sake, and as you are knownThe first and happiest hearers of the town,Be sad, as we would make ye: think ye seeThe very persons of our noble storyAs they were living; think you see them great,And follow'd with the general throng and sweatOf thousand friends; then in a moment, seeHow soon this mightiness meets misery:And, if you can be merry then, I'll sayA man may weep upon his wedding-day.


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    SCENE I. London. An ante-chamber in the palace.

    Enter NORFOLK at one door; at the other, BUCKINGHAM andABERGAVENNY


    Good morrow, and well met. How have ye doneSince last we saw in France?


    I thank your grace,

    Healthful; and ever since a fresh admirerOf what I saw there.


    An untimely agueStay'd me a prisoner in my chamber whenThose suns of glory, those two lights of men,Met in the vale of Andren.


    'Twixt Guynes and Arde:I was then present, saw them salute on horseback;Beheld them, when they lighted, how they clungIn their embracement, as they grew together;Which had they, what four throned ones could have weigh'dSuch a compounded one?


    All the whole timeI was my chamber's prisoner.


    Then you lost

    The view of earthly glory: men might say,


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    Till this time pomp was single, but now marriedTo one above itself. Each following dayBecame the next day's master, till the lastMade former wonders its. To-day the French,

    All clinquant, all in gold, like heathen gods,Shone down the English; and, to-morrow, theyMade Britain India: every man that stoodShow'd like a mine. Their dwarfish pages wereAs cherubins, all guilt: the madams too,Not used to toil, did almost sweat to bearThe pride upon them, that their very labourWas to them as a painting: now this masqueWas cried incomparable; and the ensuing night

    Made it a fool and beggar. The two kings,Equal in lustre, were now best, now worst,As presence did present them; him in eye,Still him in praise: and, being present both'Twas said they saw but one; and no discernerDurst wag his tongue in censure. When these sunsFor so they phrase 'emby their heralds challengedThe noble spirits to arms, they did performBeyond thought's compass; that former fabulous story,

    Being now seen possible enough, got credit,That Bevis was believed.


    O, you go far.


    As I belong to worship and affectIn honour honesty, the tract of every thingWould by a good discourser lose some life,Which action's self was tongue to. All was royal;To the disposing of it nought rebell'd.Order gave each thing view; the office didDistinctly his full function.



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    Who did guide,I mean, who set the body and the limbsOf this great sport together, as you guess?


    One, certes, that promises no elementIn such a business.


    I pray you, who, my lord?


    All this was order'd by the good discretionOf the right reverend Cardinal of York.


    The devil speed him! no man's pie is freedFrom his ambitious finger. What had he

    To do in these fierce vanities? I wonderThat such a keech can with his very bulkTake up the rays o' the beneficial sunAnd keep it from the earth.


    Surely, sir,There's in him stuff that puts him to these ends;

    For, being not propp'd by ancestry, whose graceChalks successors their way, nor call'd uponFor high feats done to the crown; neither alliedFor eminent assistants; but, spider-like,Out of his self-drawing web, he gives us note,The force of his own merit makes his wayA gift that heaven gives for him, which buysA place next to the king.



  • 7/31/2019 Shakespeare - Henry VIII


    I cannot tellWhat heaven hath given him,let some graver eyePierce into that; but I can see his pridePeep through each part of him: whence has he that,

    If not from hell? the devil is a niggard,Or has given all before, and he beginsA new hell in himself.


    Why the devil,Upon this French going out, took he upon him,Without the privity o' the king, to appoint

    Who should attend on him? He makes up the fileOf all the gentry; for the most part suchTo whom as great a charge as little honourHe meant to lay upon: and his own letter,The honourable board of council out,Must fetch him in the papers.


    I do knowKinsmen of mine, three at the least, that haveBy this so sickened their estates, that never