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    HENRY VIII

    A monologue from the play by William Shakespeare


    KATHERINE: Sir, I desire you do me right and justice,
    And to bestow your pity on me; for
    I am a most poor woman and a stranger,
    Born out of your dominions: having here
    No judge indifferent, nor no more assurance
    Of equal friendship and proceeding. Alas, sir,
    In what have I offended you? What cause
    Hath my behavior given to your displeasure
    That thus you should proceed to put me off
    And take your good grace from me? Heaven witness,
    I have been to you a true and humble wife,
    At all times to your will conformable,
    Even in fear to kindle your dislike,
    Yea, subject to your countenance--glad or sorry
    As I saw it inclined. When was the hour
    I ever contradicted your desire
    Or made it not mine too? Or which of your friends
    Have I not strove to love, although I knew
    He were mine enemy? What friend of mine
    That had to him derived your anger, did I
    Continue in my liking? nay, gave notice
    He was from thence discharged? Sir, call to mind
    That I have been your wife in this obedience
    Upward of twenty years, and have been blest
    With many children by you. If in the course
    And process of this time you can report,
    And prove it too, against mine honor aught,
    My bond to wedlock, or my love and duty
    Against your sacred person, in God's name
    Turn me away, and let the foul'st contempt
    Shut door upon me, and so give me up
    To the sharp'st kind of justice. Please you, sir,
    The king your father was reputed for
    A prince most prudent, of an excellent
    And unmatched wit and judgment. Ferdinand,
    My father, King of Spain, was reckoned one
    The wisest prince that there had reigned by many
    A year before. It is not to be questioned
    That they had gathered a wise council to them
    Of every realm, that did debate this business,
    Who deemed our marriage lawful. Wherefore I humbly
    Beseech you, sir, to spare me till I may
    Be by my friends in Spain advised, whose counsel
    I will implore. If not, i' th' name of God,
    Your pleasure be fulfilled!

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