Imagens das páginas
PDF

To sit with us once more, with better heed To re-survey them, we will, suddenly, Pass our accept, and peremptory answer. K. Hen. Brother, we ..". uncle Exeter, And brother Clarence,—and you, brother Gloster, Warwick,-and Huntington, go with the king: And take with you free power, to ratify, Augment, or alter, as your wisdoms best Shall see advantageable for our dignity, Any thing in, or out of, our demands; And we'll consign thereto.—Will you, fair sister, Go with the princes, or stay here with us? Q. Isa. Our gracious brother, I will go with them; Haply, a woman's voice may do some good, When articles, too nicely urg'd, be stood on. K. Hen. Yet leave our cousin Katharine here with She is our capital demand, coupris'd [us; Within the fore-rank of our articles. Q. Isab. She hath good leave. [Exeunt all but Henry, Katharine, and her Gentlewoman. ... roent. Fair Katharine, and most fair! Will you youchsafe to teach a soldier terms, Such as will enter at a lady's ear, And plead his love-suit to her gentle heart? Kath. Your majesty shall mock at me; I cannot speak your England. K. Hen. O fair Katharine, if you will love me soundly with your French heart, I will be glad to hear you confess it brokenly with your English tongue. Do you like me, Kate? Kath. Pardonnez moy, I cannot tell vat is—like me. K. Hen. An angel is like you, Kate; and you are like an angel. Kath. Que dit-il' que je suissemblable à les anges? Alice. Ouy, vrayment,(saus postregrace)ainsidit-il. R. Hen. I said so, dear Katharine; and I must not blush to affirm it. [pleines des tromperies. Rath. O bon Dieu! les langues des hommes sont K. Hen. What says she, fair one? that the tongues of men are full of deceits? Alice. Ouy; dat de tongues of de mans is be full of deceits: dat is de princess. K. Hen. The princess is the better English-woman... I'faith, Kate, my wooing is fit for thy understanding: I am glad, thou canst speak no better English; for, if thou couldst, thou wouldst find me such a plain king, that thou wouldst think I had sold my farm to buy my crown. I know no ways to mince it in love, but directly to say—I love you; then, if you urge me further than to say—Do you in faith? I wear out my suit. Give me your answer; i’faith, do; and so clap hands and a bargain: How say you, lady? ath. Sauf vostre honneur, me understand well. K. Hen. Marry, if you would put me to verses, or to dance for your sake, Kate, why you undid me: for the one, I have neither words nor measure; and for the other, I have no strength in measure, yet a reasonable measure in strength. If I could win a lady at leap-frog, or by vaulting into my saddle with my armour on my back, under the correction of bragging be it spoken, I should quickly leap into a wife. Or, if I might buffet for my love, or bound my horse for her favours, I could lay on like a butcher, and sit like a jackanapes, never off: but, before God, I cannot look greenly, nor gasp out my eloquence, nor I have no cunning in protestation; only downright oaths, which I never use till urged, nor never break for urging. If thou canst love a fellow of this temper, Kate, whose face is not worth sun-burning, that never looks in his glass for love of anything he sees there, let thine eye be thy cook. I speak to thee plain soldier: If thou canst love me for this, take me: if not to say to thee—that I shall die, is true; but—for thy love, by the lord, no; yet I love thee too. And while thou livest, dear Kate, take a fellow of plain and uncoined constancy; for he perforce must do thee right, because he hath not the gift to woo in other places; for these fellows of

infinite tongue, that can rhyme themselves into ladies' favours, they do always reason themselves out again. What! a speaker is but a prater; a rhyme is but a ballad. A good leg will fall; a straight back will stoop; a black beard will turn white; a curled pate will grow bald; a fair face will wither; a full eye will wax hollow: but a good heart, Kate, is the sun and moon; or, rather, the sun, and not the moon; for it shines bright, and never changes, but keeps his course truly. If thou would have such a one, take me: And take me, take a soldier; take a soldier, take a king: And what sayest thou then to my love! speak, my fair, and fairly, I pray thee. France? ath. Is it possible dat I should love de enemy of K. Hen. No ; it is not possible, you should love the enemy of France, Kate : but, in loving me, you should love the friend of France; for I love France so well, that I will rat part with a village of it; I will have it all mine: and, Kate, when France is mine, and I am yours, then yours is France, and Kath. I cannot tell vat is dat. . [you are mine. K. Hen. No, Kate? I will tell thee in French; which, I am sure, will hang upon my tongue like a new-married wife about her husband's neck, hardly to be shook of Quand j'ay la possession de France, et quand vous arez le possession de moi, (let me see, what then Saint Dennis be my speed!)—done vostre est France, et vous estes mienne. It is as easy for me, Kate, to conquer the kingdom, as to speak so much more French: I shall never move thee in French, unless it be to laugh at me. Kath. Sauf vostre honneur, le François que vous parlez, est meilleur que l'Anglois lequelje parle. . . R. Hen. No, #s. is't not, Kate: but thy speaking of my tongue, and I thine, most truly falsely, must needs be granted to be much at one. But, Kate, dost thou understand thus much English! Canst thou love me? Kath. I cannot tell. K. Hen. Can any of your neighbours tell, Kate! I'll ask them. Come, I know, thou lovest me; and at night when you come into your closet, you'll uestion this gentlewoman about me; and I know, ate, you will, to her, dispraise those parts in me, that you love with your heart: but, good Kate, mock me mercifully; the rather, gentle princess, because I love thee cruelly. If ever thou be'st mine, Kate, (as I have a saving faith within me, tells me, thou shalt,) I get thee with scambling, and thou must therefore needs prove a good soldier-breeder: Shall not thou and I, between Saint Dennis and Saint George, compound a boy, half French, half English, that shall * to Constantinople, and take the Turk by the beard? shall we not? what sayest thou, my fair Kath. I do not know dat. [flower-de-luce! K. Hen. No; 'tis hereafter to know, but now to promise: do but now promise, Kate, you will en; deavour for your French part of such a boy; and for my English moiety, take the word of a king, and a bachelor. How answer you, la plus belle Katharine du monde, mon tres chere et divine deesse? Kath. Your majesté'ave fausse French enough to deceive de most sage damoiselle dat is en France: K. Hen. Now, fy upon my false French By mine honour, in true English, I love thee, Kate: by which honour I dare not swear, thou lovest me; yet my blood begins to flatter me that thou dost, notwithstanding the poor and untempering effect of my visage. Now beshrew my father's ambition! he was thinking of civil wars when he got me; therefore was I created with a stubborn outside, with an aspect of iron, that, when I come to woo ladies, I fright them. But, in faith, Kate, the elder I wax, the bet: ter. I shall appear: my comfort is, that old age, that ill layer-up of beauty, can do no more spoil upon iny face: thou hast me, if thou hast me, at the worst; and thou shalt wear me, if thou wear me, better and better; And therefore tell me, most fair Katharine, will you have me! Put off your maiden blushes; avouch the thoughts of your heart with the looks of an empress; take me by the hand, and say-Harry of England, I am thine: which word thou shalt no sooner bless mine ear withal, but I will tell thee aloud—England is thine, Ireland is thine, France is thine, and Henry Plantagenet is thine; who, though I speak it before his face, if he be not fellow with the best king, thou shalt find the best king of good fellows. Come, your answer in broken music; for thy voice is music, and thy English broken : therefore, queen of all, Katharine, break thy mind to me in broken English, Wilt thou have me? Kath. Dat is, as it shall please de | mon pere. K. Hen. Nay, it will please him well, Kate; it shall please him, Kate. Kath. Den it shall also content me. K. Hen. Upon that I will kiss your hand, and I call you—my queen. Kath. Laissez, mon seigneur, laissez, laissez: ma foy, je ne veux point que vous abbaissez vostre grandeur, en baisant la main d'une rostre indigme serviteure; excusex moy, je vous supplie, mon tres puissant seigneur. K. Hen. Then I will kiss your lips, Kate. Kath. Les dames, et damoiselles, pour estre baisées devant leur nopces, il n'est pas le coitume de France. K. Hen. Madam my interpreter, what says she? Alice. Dat it is not be de fashion pour les ladies of France,—I cannot tell what is, baiser, en English. K. Hen. To kiss. Alice. Your majesty entendre bettre que moy. K. Hen. It is not the fashion for the maids in France to kiss before they are married, would she Alice. Ouy, vrayment. say? K. Hen. O, Kate, nice customs curt’sy to great kings. Dear Kate, you and I cannot be confined within the weak list of a country's fashion: we are the makers of manners, Kate; and the liberty that follows our places, stops the mouths of all findfaults; as I will do yours, for upholding the nice fashion of your country, in o; me a kiss: therefore, patiently, and yielding. k issing her.) You have witchcraft in your lips, Kate : there is more eloquence in a sugar touch of them, than in the tongues of the French council; and they should sooner persuade Harry of England, than a general petition of monarchs. Here comes your father. Enter the French King and Queen, BURGUNDY, Bedford, Gloster, Exeter, WestMoRelAND, and other French and English Lords. Bur. God save your majesty! my royal cousin, teach you our princess English? K. Hen. I would have her learn, my fair cousin, how perfectly I love her; and that is good English. Bur. Is she not apt? K. Hen. Our tongue is rough, coz; and my condition is not smooth: so that, having neither the voice nor the heart of flattery about me, I cannot so conjure up the spirit of love in her, that he will appear in his true likeness. ur. Pardon the frankness of my mirth, if I answer you for that. If you would conjure in her you must make a circle: if conjure up love in her in his true likeness, he must appear naked, and blind: Can you blame her then, being a maid yet rosed over with the virgin crimson of modesty, if she deny the appearance of a naked blind boy in her naked seeing self? It were, my lord, a hard condition for a maid to consign to. [blind, and enforces. K. Hen. Yet they do wink, and yield; as love is Bur. They are then excused, my lord, when they see not what they do. K. Hen. Then, good my lord, teach your cousin to consent to winking. Bur. I will wink on her to consent, my lord, if you will teach her to know my meaning: for maids, well summered and warm kept, are like flies at Bartholomew-tide, blind, though they have their eyes; and then they will endure handling, which before would not abide looking on.

[ocr errors]

K. Hen. This moral ties me over to time, and a hot summer; and so I will catch the fly, your cousin, in the latter end, and she must be § too. Bur. As love is, my lord, before it loves. K. Hen. It is so; and you may, some of you, thank love for my blindness; who cannot see many a fair French city, for one fair French maid, that stands in my way. Fr. King...Yes, my lord, you see them perspectively, the cities turned into a maid; for they are all girdled with maiden walls, that war hath never K. Hen. Shall Kate be my wife? [entered. Fr. King. So please you. K. Hen. I am content; so the maiden cities you talk of may wait on her; so the maid, that stood in the way of my wish, shall show me the way to my will. |. Fr. King. We have consented to all terms of reaK. Hen. Is’t so, my lords of England? West. The king hath granted every article: His daughter, first; and then, in sequel, all, According to their firm proposed natures. Ere. Only, he hath not yet subscribed this:— Where your majesty demands,--That the king of France, having any occasion to write for matter of grant, shall name your highness in this form, and with this addition, in French,--Notre tres cher filz Henry roy d'Angleterre, heretier de France; and thus in Latin, -Praeclarissimus filius noster Henricus, rex Angliae, et harres Francia. Fr. King. Nor this I have not, brother, so denied, But your request shall make me let it pass. K. Hen. } pray you then, in love and dear alliLet that one article rank with the rest: ance, And, thereupon, give me your daughter. [raise up Fr. King. Take her, fair son; and from her blood Issue to me: that the contending kingdoms Qf France and England, whose very shores look pale With envy of each other's happiness, May cease their hatred; and . dear conjunction Plant neighbourhood and christian-like accord In their sweet bosoms, that never war advance His bleeding sword 'twixt Bngland and fair France. All. Amen' [ness all, K. Hen. Now welcome, Kate:—and bear me witThat here I kiss her as my sovereign queen. [Flourish. Q. Isa. God, the best maker of all marriages, Combine your hearts in one, your realms in one! As man and wife, being two, are one in love, So be there 'twixt your kingdoms such a spousal, That never may ill office, or fell jealousy, Which troubles oft the bed of blessed marriage, Thrust in between the paction of these kingdoms, To make divorce of their incorporate league; That English may as French, French Englishmen, Receive each other!—God speak this Amen! All. Amen' [which day, K. Hen. Prepare we for our marriage:— on My lord of Burgundy, we'll take your oath, And all the peers, for surety of our leagues.— Then shall I swear to Kate, and you to me; And may our oaths well kept and prosperous be! [Exeunt. Enter Chorus. Thus far, with rough, and all unable pen, Qur bending author hath pursu'd the story; In little room confining mighty men, Mangling by starts the full course of their glory. Small time, but, in that small, most greatly liv'd This star of England: fortune made his sword; By which the world's best garden he achiev'd, And of it left his son imperial lord. Henry the sixth, in infant bands crown'd king Of France and England, did this king succeed; Whose state so many had the "..."; That they lost France, and made his England bleed: sake, Which oft our stage has shown ; and, for their In your fair minds let this acceptance take. [Exit.

[ocr errors]
[merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

KING HENRY The Sixth.

Duke of Gloster, Uncle to the King, and Protector.

Duke of BED Ford, Uncle to the King, and Regent of France

Thom As BEAufort, Duke of Ereter, great Uncle to the King

HENRY BEAUFort, great Uncle to the King, Bishop of Winchester, and afterwards Cardinal.

John BEAurort, Earl of Somerset, afterwards Duke.

Richard PlaNTAGENET, eldest Son of Richard late Earl of Cambridge, afterwards Duke of York.

EARL of WAR wick.

EARL of SA lisbury.

EARL of SUFFolk.

Load TAlbor, afterwards Earl of Shrewsbury.

John TAlbot, his Son.

EDMUND MoRTIMER, Earl of March.

Mortimer's Keeper, and a Lawyer.

Sir John FAstolfe.

Sir William Lucy.

Sir William GlaxsDAle.

SiR Thomas GAR GRAVE.

Mayor of London.

Woodville, Lieutenant of the Tower.
VERNoN, of the White Rose, or York Faction.
BAsset, of the Red Rose, or Lancaster Faction.
Charles, Dauphin, and afterwards King of France.
REIGNIER, Duke of Anjou, and titular King of Naples.
Duke of Burt GUNDY.

Dukk or ALEN con.

Governor of Paris.

Bastard of Orleans.
Master Gunner of Orleans, and his Son.
General of the French Forces in Bourdeaur.
A French Sergeant.

A Porter.
An old Shepherd, Father to Joan la Pucelle.

MARGARet, Daughter to Reignier; afterwards married to King Henry.

Coux.Thess of Auverto Nk,

JoAN LA Pucelle, commonly called Joan of Arc.

Fiends appearing to La Pucelle, Lords, Warders of the Tower, Heralds, Officers, Soldiers, Messengers. and several Attendants both on the English and French.

Scene,—Partly in England, and partly in France.

ACT I.
Scene I.--Westminster Abbey.

Dead march. Corpse of King HENRy the Fifth

discovered, lying in state; attended on by the Dukes

of Bedford, Gloster, and Exeter ; the Earl of

& ARwick, the Bishop of WINchester, Heralds,

C. Bed. Hung be the heavens with black, yield day to night!

Comets, importing change of times and states,
Brandish your crystal tresses in the sky;
And with them scourge the bad revolting stars,
That have consented unto Henry's death!
Henry the fifth, too famous to live long!
England ne'er lost a king of so much worth.

§. England ne'er had a king, until his time.
Virtue he had, deserving to command;
His brandish'd sword did blind men with his beams;
His arms spread wider than a dragon's wings;
His sparkling eyes, replete with wrathful fire,
More dazzled and drove back his enemies,
Than mid-day sun, fierce bent against their faces.

What should I say? his deeds exceed all speech:
He ne'er lift up his hand, but conquered.
Exe. We mourn in black; Why mourn we not in
Henry is dead, and never shall revive: [blood?
Upon a wooden coffin we attend;
And death's dishonourable victory
We with our stately presence glorify,
Like captives bound to a triumphant car.
What? shall we curse the planets of mishap,
That plotted thus our glory's overthrow?
Or shall we think the subtle-witted French
Conjurors and sorcerers, that, afraid of him,
By magic verses have contriv'd his end?
Win. He was a king, bless'd of the King of kings.
Unto the French the dreadful judgment day
So dreadful will not be, as was his sight.
The battles of the Lord of hosts he fought:
The church's prayers made him so prosperous.
Glo. The church' where is it? Had not church-
men pray'd,
His thread of life had not so soon decay’d:
None do you like but an effeminate prince.
Whom, like a school-boy, you may over-awe.

[graphic]

Win. Gloster, whate'erwelike, thou art protector; And lookest to command the prince, and realm. Thy wife is proud; she holdeth thee in awe, More than God, or religious churchmen, may: Glo. Name not religion, for thou lov'st the flesh; And ne'er throughout the year to church thou go'st, Except it be to pray against thy foes. [in peace! Bed. Cease, cease these jars, and rest your minds Let's to the altar:—Heralds, wait on us:– Instead of gold, we'll offer up our arms; Since arms avail not, now that Henry's dead.— Posterity, await for wretched years, When at their mothers' moist eyes babes shall suck; Our isle be made a nourish of salt tears, And none but women left to wail the dead.— Henry the fifth ! thy ghost I invocate; Prosper this realm, keep it from civil broils! §. with adverse planets in the heavens ! A far more glorious star thy soul will make, Than Julius Caesar, or bright— Enter a Messenger. Mess. My honourable lords, health to you all! Sad tidings bring I to you out of France, Of loss, of slaughter, and discomfiture: Guienne, Champaigne, Rheims, Orleans, Paris, Guysors, Poictiers, are all quite lost. Bed. What say'st thou, man, before dead Henry's corse? Speak softly; or the loss of those great towns §. make in burst his lead, and rise from death. Glo. Is Paris lost? is Rouen yielded up ! If Henry were recall'd to life again, These news would cause him once more yield the

lost. us'd? Exe. #. were they lost? what treachery was Mess No treachery; but want of men and money. Among the soldiers this is muttered,— That here you maintain several factions; And, whilst a field should be despatch'd and fought, You are disputing of your generals. One would have ling ring wars with little cost; Another would fly swift but wanteth wings; A third man i. without expense at all, By guileful fair words F. may be obtain'd. Awake, awake, English nobility! Let not sloth dim your honours, new-begot: Cropp'd are the flower-de-luces in your arms; Of England's coat one half is cut away. Exe. Were our tears wanting to this funeral, These tidings would call forth her flowing tides. Bed. Me they concern; regent I am of France:— Give me my steeled coat, I'll fight for France.— Away with these disgraceful wailing robes! Wounds I will lend the French, instead of eyes, To weep their intermissive miseries.

Enter another Messenger. 2 Mess. Lords, view these letters, full of bad mischance,

France is revolted from the English quite;
Except some petty towns of no import:
The Dauphin Charles is crowned king in Rheims;
The bastard of Orleans with him is join'd;
Reigner, duke of Anjou, doth take his part;
The duke of Alençon flieth to his side.

Ere. The i. crowned king! all fly to him! O, whither shall we fly from this reproach 3

Glo. We will not fly, but to our enemies' throats:— Bedford, if thou be slack, I'll fight it out. . [ness?

Bed. Gloster, why doubt'st thou of my forwardAn army have I muster'd in my thoughts, Wherewith already France is over-run.

Enter a third Messenger. 3 Mess. My gracious lords,--to add to your laments, Where with you now bedev king Henry's hearse, I must inform you of a dismal fight, Betwixt the stout lord Talbot and the French. Win. What! wherein Talbot overcame? is't so?

3 Mess. O, no; wherein lord Talbot was o'erthrown : The circumstance I'll tell you more at large. The tenth of August last, this dreadful lord, Retiring from the siege of Orleans, Having full scarce six thousand in his troop, By three and twenty thousand of the French Was round encompassed and set upon: No leisure had he to enrank his men; He wanted pikes to set before his archers; Instead whereof, sharp stakes, pluck'dout of hedges, They pitched in the ground confusedly, To keep the horsemen off from breaking in. More o three hours the fight continued; Where valiant Talbot, above human thought, Enacted wonders with his sword and lance. Hundreds he sent to hell, and none durst stand him; Here, there, and every where, enrag'd he slew : The French exclaim’d, The devil was in arms; All the whole army stood agaz'd on him: His soldiers, spying his undaunted spirit, A Talbot! a Talbot' cried out amain, And rush'd into the bowels of the battle. Here had the conquest fully been seal’d up, If sir John Fastolfe had not play'd the coward; He, being in the vaward, (plac'd behind, With purpose to relieve and follow them,) Cowardly fled, not having struck one stroke. Hence grew the general wreck and massacre; Enclosed were they with their enemies: A base Walloon, to win the Dauphin's grace, Thrust Talbot with a spear into the o, Whom all France, with their chief assembled strength, Durst not presume to look once in the face. Bed. Is Talbot slain? then I will slay myself, For living idly here, in pomp and ease, Whilst such a worthy leader, wanting aid, Unto his dastard foe-men is betray'd. 3 Mess. O no, he lives; but is took prisoner, And lord Scales with him, and lord Hungerford: Most of the rest slaughter'd, or took, likewise. Bed. His ransome there is none but I shall pay: I'll hale the Dauphin headlong from his throne, His crown shall be the ransome of my friend; Four of their lords I'll change for one of ours.Farewell, my masters; to my task will I; Bonfires in #. forth with I am to make, To keep our great Saint George's feast withal: Ten thousand soldiers with me I will take, Whose bloody deeds shall make all Europe quake. 3 Mess. So you had need; for Orleans is besieg'd; The English army is grown weak and faint: The .#. Salisbury craveth supply, And hardly keeps his men from mutiny, Since they, so few, watch such a multitude. Exe. Remember, lords, your oaths to Henry sworn; Either to quell the Dauphin utterly, Or bring him in obedience to your yoke. Bed. § do remember it; and here take leave, To go about my preparation. Erit. Glo. I'll to the Tower, with all the haste I can, To view the artillery and munition; And then I will proclaim young Henry king. [Exit. Exe. To Eltham will I, where the young king is, Being ordain'd his special governor; And for his safety there I'll best devise. [Erit. Win. Each o his place and function to attend: I am left out; for me nothing remains. But long I will not be Jack-out-of-office; The king from Eltham I intend to send, And sit at chiefest stern of public weal. [Exit. Scene closes.

Scene II.-France. Before Orleans. Enter Charles, with his Forces; ALENCON, Reig Nier, and others. Char. Mars his true moving, even as in the heaSo in the earth, to this day is not known : [vens,

__

Late did he shine upon the English side;
Now we are victors, upon us he smiles.
What towns of any moment, but we have?
At pleasure here we lie, near Orleans;
Otherwhiles, the famish'd English, like pale ghosts,
Faintly besiege us one hour in a month.
Alen. They want their porridge, and their fat
bull-beeves:
Either they must be dieted like mules,
And have their provender tied to their mouths,
Or piteous they will look, like drowned mice.
eig. Let's raise the siege; Why live we idly here?
Talbot is taken whom we wont to fear:
Remaineth none but mad-brain'd io
And he may well in "...i spend his gall,
Nor men, nor money, hath he to make war.
Char. Sound, sound alarum: we will rush on them.
Now for the honour of the forlorn French:—
Him I forgive my death, that killeth me,
When he sees me go back one foot, or fly. [Ereunt.
Alarums; Excursions; afterwards a Retreat.
Re-enter CHARLEs, Alex Cox, REIGNIER, and
others.
Char. Whoever saw the like? what men have I?—
Dogs! cowards! dastards!—I would ne'er have sled,
But that they left me 'midst my enemies.
Reig. Salisbury is a desperate homicide;
He fighteth as one weary of his life.
The other lords, like lions wanting food,
Do rush upon us as their hungry prey.
Alen. Froissard, a countryman of ours, records,
England all Olivers and Rowlands bred,
During the time Edward the third did reign.
More truly now may this be verified;
For none but Samsons, and Goliasses,
It sendeth forth to skirmish. One to ten
lean raw-bon'd rascals! who would e'er suppose
They had such courage and audacity
Char. Let's leave this town; for they are hair-
brain'd slaves,
And hunger will enforce them to be more eager:
Of old I know them; rather with their teeth
The walls they'll tear down, than forsake the siege.
Reig. I think, by some odd gimmals or device,
Their arms are set, like clocks, still to strike on 3
Else ne'er could they hold out so, as they do.
By my consent, we'll e'en let them alone.
Alen. Be it so.

Enter the Bastard of ORLEANs. Bast. Where's the prince Dauphin 1 I have news for him. Char. Bastard of Orleans, thrice welcome to us. Bast. Methinks your looks are sad, your cheer appall'd ; Hath the late overthrow wrought this offence? Be not dismay’d, for succour is at hand: A holy maid hither with me I bring, Which, by a vision sent to her from heaven, Qrdained is to raise this tedious siege, And drive the English forth the bounds of France. The spirit of deep prophesy she hath, Exceeding the nine . of old Rome; What's past, and what's to come, she can descry. Speak, shall I call her in? Believe my words, For they are certain and unfallible. Char. Go, call herin; [Exit Bastard.] But, first, to try her skill, Reignier, stand thou as Dauphin in my place: Question her proudly, let thy looks be stern:— By this means shall we sound what skill she hath. (Retires.) EnterLAPUcelle, Bastardos ORLEANs, and others. Reig. Fairmaid, is't thou wilt do those wond’rous seats 7 - me?— Puc. Reignier, is't thou that thinkest to beguile Where is the Dauphin"—come, come from behind; I know thee well, though never seen before.

Be not amaz'd, there's nothing hid from me:
In private will I talk with thee apart;— -
Stand back, you lords, and give us leave awhile.
Reig. She takes upon her bravely at first dash.
Puc. Dauphin, I am by birth a shepherd's daugh-
My wit untrain'd in any kind of art. ter,
Heaven, and our Lady gracious, hath it pleas'
To shine on my contemptible estate:
Lo, whilst I waited on my tender lambs,
And to sun's parching heat display'd my cheeks,
God's mother deigned to appear to me;
And, in a vision full of majesty,
Will'd me to leave my base vocation,
And free my country from calamity:
Her aid she promis'd, and assur'd success:
In complete glory she reveal’d herself;
And, whereas I was black and swart before,
With those clear rays which she infus'd on me,
That beauty am I bless'd with, which you see.
Ask me what question thou canst possible,
And I will answer jo.
My courage try by combat, if thou dar'st,
And thou shalt find that I exceed my sex.
Resolve on this: Thou shalt be fortunate,
If thou receive me for thy warlike mate. -
Char. Thou hast astonish'd me with thy high

terms; Only this proof I’ll of thy valour make, In single combat thou shalt buckle with me; And, if thou vanquishest, thy words are true; Otherwise, I renounce all confidence. Puc. I am prepar'd: here is my keen-edg'd sword, Deck'd with five flower-de-luces on each side; The which at Touraine, in Saint Katharine's churchOut of a deal of old iron I chose forth. [yard, Char. Then come o' God's name, I fear no woman. Puc. And, while I live, I'll ne'er fly from a man. (They fight.) Char. Stay, stay thy hand; thou art an Amazon, And fightest with the sword of Deborah. Puc. Christ's mother helps me, else I were too weak. [help me: Char. Whoe'er helps thee, 'tis thou that must Impatiently I burn with thy desire; My heart and hands thou hast at once subdu'd. Excellent Pucelle, if thy name be so, Let me thy servant, and not sovereign be; 'Tis the French Dauphin sueth to thee thus. Puc. I must not yield to any rites of love, For my profession's sacred from above: When I have chased all thy foes from hence, Then will I think upon a recompense. [thrall. Char. Mean time, look gracious on thy prostrate Reig. My lord, methinks, is very long in talk:

Alen. Doubtless he shrives this woman to her .

smock: Else ne'er could he so lon protract his speech. Reig. Shall we disturb i. since he keeps no mean? [know: Alen. He may mean more than we poor men do These women are shrewd tempters with their tongues. - on? Reig. My lord, where are you? what devise you Shall we give over Orleans, or no? Puc. Why, no, I say, distrustful recreants! Fight till the last gasp; I will be your guard. . . . Char. What she says, I'll confirm; we'll fight it

out.

Puc. Assign'd am I to be the English scourge. This night the siege assuredly I'll raise: Expect Saint Martin's summer, halcyon days, Since I have entered into these wars. Glory is like a circle in the water, Which never ceaseth to enlarge itself, Till, by broad spreading, it disperse to nought. With Henry's . the English circle ends; Dispersed are the glories it included. Now am I like that proud insulting ship, Which Caesar and his fortune bare at once.

« AnteriorContinuar »