Richard III

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 5 Scene 3

page Act 5 Scene 3 Page 11

Original Text

Modern Text

RICHARD

By the apostle Paul, shadows tonight
230Have struck more terror to the soul of Richard
Than can the substance of ten thousand soldiers
Armed in proof and led by shallow Richmond.
'Tis not yet near day. Come, go with me;
Under our tents I’ll play the eavesdropper
235To see if any mean to shrink from me.

RICHARD

By St. Paul, ghosts have struck more terror in my soul tonight than ten thousand of worthless Richmond’s soldiers could, dressed up in their most sword-proof armor. It’s not yet daylight. Come with me; I’ll spy under the tents to see if any of my own people plan to desert me.
Exeunt
They exit
Enter the lords to RICHMOND, sitting in his tent
RICHMOND’s LORDS enter his tent and go to where he is sitting.

LORDS

Good morrow, Richmond.

LORDS

Good morning, Richmond.

RICHMOND

Cry mercy, lords and watchful gentlemen,
That you have ta'en a tardy sluggard here.

RICHMOND

Pardon me, lords and gentlemen who stayed awake. You’ve caught me oversleeping.

A LORD

How have you slept, my lord?

A LORD

How did you sleep, my lord?

RICHMOND

240The sweetest sleep and fairest-boding dreams
That ever entered in a drowsy head
Have I since your departure had, my lords.
Methought their souls whose bodies Richard murdered
Came to my tent and cried on victory.
245I promise you, my soul is very jocund
In the remembrance of so fair a dream.
How far into the morning is it, lords?

RICHMOND

Since you left, I’ve been enjoying the sweetest sleep and most promising dreams I’ve ever had, my lords. I dreamed the souls of the people Richard murdered came to my tent and promised me victory. I tell you, I feel very jolly remembering such a beautiful dream. How late is it, lords?

LORDS

Upon the stroke of four.

LORDS

It’s almost four.

RICHMOND

Why, then ’tis time to arm and give direction.
250His oration to his soldiers
More than I have said, loving countrymen,
The leisure and enforcement of the time
Forbids to dwell upon. Yet remember this:

RICHMOND

Why, then, it’s time to put on my armor and instruct the troops. (to his soldiers) I can’t tell you much right now, loyal countrymen, because we don’t have time. But know this: