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To make a bastard, and a slave of me:
Tal. Fly, to revenge my death, if I be slain.
John. Then let me stay; and, father, do you fly: Your loss is great, so your regard’ should be ; My worth unknown, no loss is known in me. Upon my death the French can little boast; In yours they will, in you all hopes are lost. Flight cannot stain the honour you have won; But mine it will, that no exploit have done: You fled for vantage every one will swear ; But, if I bow, they'll say—it was for fear. There is no hope that ever I will stay, If, the first hour, I shrink, and run away. Here, on my knee, I beg mortality, Rather than life preserv'd with infamy.
Tal. Shall all thy mother's hopes lie in one tomb? John. Ay, rather than I'll shame my mother's
womb. Tal. Upon my blessing I command thee go. John. To fight I will, but not to fly the foe. Tal. Part of thy father may be sav'd in thee. John. No part of him, but will be shame in me. Tal. Thou never had'st renown, nor canst not
lose it. John. Yes, your renowned name; Shall flight
noble Talbot stood.] For what reason this scene is written in rhyme, I cannot guess. If Shakspeare had not in other plays mingled his rhymes and blank verses in the same manner, I should have suspected that this dialogue had been a part of some
which was never finished, and that being loath to throw his labour away, he inserted it here. JOHNSON.
your regard - ] Your care of your own safety.
Tal. Thy father's charge shall clear thee from that
stain. John. You cannot witness for me, being slain. If death be so apparent, then both fly.
Tal. And leave my followers here, to fight, and die?
John. And shall my youth be guilty of such blame?
Tal. Then here I take my leave of thee, fair son,
A Field of Battle.
Alarum: Excursions, wherein TALBOT's Son is
hemmed about, and Talbot rescues him. Tal. Saint George and victory! fight, soldiers,
fight : The regent hath with Talbot broke his word, And left us to the rage of France his sword. Where is John Talbot ?-pause, and take thy breath; I gave thee life, and rescu'd thee from death.
John. O twice my father! twice am I thy son: The life, thou gav’st me first, was lost and done;
Till with thy warlike sword, despite of fate,
force from Talbot, my brave boy:Here, purposing the Bastard to destroy, Came in strong rescue. Speak, thy father's care; Art not thou weary, John? How didst thou fare? Wilt thou yet leave the battle, boy, and fly, Now thou art seald the son of chivalry? Fly, to revenge my death, when I am dead; The help of one stands me in little stead. O, too much folly is it, well I wot, To hazard all our lives in one small boat. If I to-day die not with Frenchmen's rage, To-morrow I shall die with mickle age : By me they nothing gain, an if I stay, 'Tis but the short'ning of my life one day: In thee thy mother dies, our household's name, My death's revenge, thy youth, and England's fame: All these, and more, we hazard by thy stay; All these are sav'd, if thou wilt fly away.
John. The sword of Orleans hath not made me
smart, These words of yours draw life-blood from my
heart: On that advantage, bought with such a shame, (To save a paltry life, and slay bright fame,) Before
young Talbot from old Talbot fly,
Tal. Then follow thou thy desperate sire of Crete,
Another Part of the same.
Alarum: Excursions. Enter Talbot wounded,
supported by a Servant. Tal. Where is my other life?mine own is
Talbot? where is valiant John
* On that advantage, bought with such a shame,
(To save a paltry life, and slay bright fame,)) The sense is, Before young Talbot fly from his father, (in order to save his life while he destroys his character,) on, or for the sake of, the advantages you mention, namely, preserving our household's name,
&c. may my coward horse drop down dead! Malone.
? And like me to the peasant boys of France;) To like one to the peasants, is, to compare, to level by comparison.
Triumphant death, smear'd with captivity!
Enter Soldiers, bearing the Body of JOHN
TALBOT Seru. O my dear lord! lo, where your son is
borne! Tal. Thou antick death, which laugh’st us here
to scorn, Anon, from thy insulting tyranny, Coupled in bonds of perpetuity, Two Talbots, winged through the lither sky,? In thy despite, shall 'scape mortality:O thou whose wounds become hard-favoured death, Speak to thy father, ere thou yield thy breath: Brave death by speaking, whether he will, or no; Imagine him a Frenchman, and thy foe.
8 Triumphant death, smear'd with captivity!] That is, death stained and dishonoured with captivity. Johnson. 9 Tend'ring my ruin,] Watching me with tenderness in my
fall. 'Thou antick death,] The fool, or antick of the play, made sport by mocking the graver personages,
-winged through the lither sky,] Lither is flexible or yielding