Page:Richard II (1921) Yale.djvu/137

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King Richard the Second
125
 

his own richness of eloquence and imagination, and elaborating the one appearance of Queen Isabel into three, converting mere grief into premonition, dejection, and passionate reluctance of farewell. It is more in the nature of things for Shakespeare to color and dramatize a tame passage of a lesser poet (cf. his contemporary handling of Brooke's Romeus and Juliet) than for Daniel to change and reduce Shakespeare's brilliant scenes to his own dull stanzas.

The following excerpts from Shakespeare's sources, if compared with the pertinent passages in the play, will show something of the extent and nature of his indebtedness and the freedom with which he dealt with such material:


From Holinshed's Chronicles, ed. Wallace and Hansen, pp. 70–71. Compare with V. iii.

. . . Except the earle of Rutland, by whose follie their practised conspiracie was brought to light and disclosed to king Henrie. For this earle of Rutland departing before from Westminster to see his father the duke of Yorke, as he sat at dinner, had his counterpane of the indenture of the confederacie in his bosome.

The father espieng it, would needs see what it was: and though the sonne humblie denied to shew it, the father being more earnest to see it, by force tooke it out of his bosome; and perceiving the contents therof, in a great rage caused his horsses to be sadled out of hand, and spitefullie reprooving his sonne of treason, for whome he was become suertie and mainpernour for his good abearing in open parlement, he incontinentlie mounted on horsse-backe to ride towards Windsore to the king, to declare unto him the malicious intent of his complices. The earle of Rutland seeing in what danger he stood, tooke his horsse, and rode another waie to Windsore in post, so that he got thither before his father, and when he was alighted at the castell gate, he caused the gates to be shut, saieng that he must needs deliver the keies to the king. When he came before the kings presence, he kneeled downe on his knees, beseeching him of mercie and forgivenesse, and declaring the whole matter unto him in order as everie thing had passed, obteined pardon. Therewith came his father, and being let in, delivered the indenture which he had taken