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As I by thine, a wife: this is a match,

And made between 's by vows. Thou hast found mine; But how, is to be question'd: for I saw her,

As I thought, dead; and have, in vain, said many

A prayer upon her grave. I'll not seek far

(For him, I partly know his mind) to find thee

An honourable husband.-Come, Camillo,

And take her by the hand: whose worth and honesty Is richly noted; and here justified

By us, a pair of kings.-Let's from this place.—

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PRINCE HENRY, his Son; afterwards King Henry III.
ARTHUR, Duke of Bretagne, son of Geffrey, late Duke
of Bretagne, the elder Brother of KING JOHN.
WILLIAM MARESHALL, Earl of Pembroke.
GEFFREY FITZ-PETER, Earl of Essex, Chief Justiciary
of England.

WILLIAM LONGSWORD, Earl of Salisbury.
ROBERT BIGOT, Earl of Norfolk.

HUBERT DE BURGH, Chamberlain to the KING.

ROBERT FAULCONBRIDGE, Son of Sir Robert Faulconbridge.

PHILIP FAULCONBRIDGE, his Half-brother, bastard Son to King Richard I.

JAMES GURNEY, Servant to LADY FAULCONBRIDGE.
PETER OF POMFRET, a Prophet.
PHILIP, King of France.

LEWIS, the Dauphin.

ARCHDUKE OF AUSTRIA.

CARDINAL PANDULPH, the Pope's Legate.
MELUN, a French Lord.

CHATILLON, Ambassador from France to KING JOHN.

ELINOR, the Widow of King Henry II., and Mother of KING JOHN.

CONSTANCE, Mother to ARTHUR.

BLANCH, Daughter to Alphonso, King of Castile, and Niece to KING JOHN.

LADY FAULCONBRIDGE, Mother to the Bastard and

ROBERT FAULCONBRIDGE.

Lords, Ladies, Citizens of Angiers, Sheriff, Heralds, Officers, Soldiers, Messengers, and other At tendants.

SCENE,-Sometimes in ENGLAND, and sometimes in FRANCE.

ACT I.

SCENE 1.-NORTHAMPTON.

A Room of State in the Palace. Enter KING JOHN, Queen ELINOR, PEMBROKE, ESSEX, SALISBURY, and others. with CHATILLON.

K. John. Now, say, Chatillon, what would France with us?

Chat. Thus, after greeting, speaks the king of France, In my behaviour, to the majesty,

The borrow'd majesty of England here.

Eli. A strange beginning;-borrow'd majesty!
K. John. Silence, good mother; hear the embassy.
Chat. Philip of France, in right and true behalf

Of thy deceased brother Geffrey's son,
Arthur Plantagenet, lays most lawful claim
To this fair island and the territories.-

To Ireland, Poictiers, Anjou, Touraine, Maine:
Desiring thee to lay aside the sword,

Which sways usurpingly these several titles;
And put the same into young Arthur's hand,
Thy nephew, and right royal sovereign.

K. John. What follows, if we disallow of this?
Chat. The proud control of fierce and bloody war,
To enforce these rights so forcibly withheld.

[blood,

K. John. Here have we war for war, and blood for Controlment for controlment: so answer France. Chat. Then take my king's defiance from my mouth, The furthest limit of my embassy.

K. John. Bear mine to him, and so depart in peace: Be thou as lightning in the eyes of France;

For ere thou canst report I will be there,

The thunder of my cannon shall be heard:
So, hence! Be thou the trumpet of our wrath,
And sullen presage of your own decay.-
An honourable conduct let him have:-
Pembroke, look to 't-Farewell, Chatillon.

[Exeunt CHATILLON and PEMBROKE.
Eli What now, my son? have I not ever said,
How that ambitious Constance would not cease,
Till she had kindled France, and all the world,
Upon the right and party of her son?

This might have been prevented and made whole,
With very easy arguments of love;

Which now the manage of two kingdoms must
With fearful bloody issue arbitrate.

K. John. Our strong possession, and our right, for us.

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Our abbeys, and our priories, shall pay
Re-enter Sheriff, with ROBERT FAULCONBRIDGE, and
PHILIP, his bastard Brother.

This expedition's charge.-What men are you?
Bast. Your faithful subject I, a gentleman,
Born in Northamptonshire; and eldest son,
As I suppose, to Robert Faulconbridge;
A soldier, by the honour-giving hand
Of Coeur-de-lion knighted in the field.

K. John. What art thou?

Rob. The son and heir to that same Faulconbridge. K. John. Is that the elder, and art thou the heir? You came not of one mother then, it seems.

Bast. Most certain of one mother, mighty king, That is well known; and, as I think, one father: But, for the certain knowledge of that truth, I put you o'er to heaven, and to my mother; Of that I doubt, as all men's children may. Eli. Out on thee, rude man! thou dost shame thy And wound her honour with this diffidence. [mother, Bast. I, Madam? no, I have no reason for it: That is my brother's plea, and none of mine; The which if he can prove, 'a pops me out At least from fair five hundred pound a-year: Heaven guard my mother's honour, and my land! K. John. A good blunt fellow :-Why, being younger Doth he lay claim to thine inheritance? [born Bast. I know not why, except to get the land. But once he slander'd me with bastardy: But whe'r I be as true-begot, or no, That still I lay upon my mother's head; But, that I am as well-begot, my liege, (Fair fall the bones that took the pains for me!) Compare our faces, and be judge yourself. If old Sir Robert did beget us both, And were our father, and this son like him :

O old Sir Robert. fatner, on my knee

I give heaven thanks I was not like to thee.

[here!

K. John. Why, what a mad-cap hath heaven lent us Eli. He hath a trick of Coeur-de-lion's face, The accent of his tongue affecteth him: Do you not read some tokens of my son In the large composition of this man?

K. John. Mine eye hath well examinèd his parts, And finds them perfect Richard.-Sirrah, speak, What doth move you to claim your brother's land? Bast. Because he hath a half-face, like my father; With that half-face would he have all my land: A half-faced groat five hundred pound a-year!

Rob. My gracious liege, when that my father lived, Your brother did employ my father much;

Bast. Well, Sir, by this you cannot get my land;
Your tale must be, how he employ'd my mother.
Rob. And once despatch'd him in an embassy
To Germany, there, with the emperor,
To treat of high affairs touching that time:
The advantage of his absence took the king,
And in the meantime sojourn'd at my father's;
Where how he did prevail, I shame to speak:
But truth is truth; large lengths of seas and shores
Between my father and my mother lay,
(As I have heard my father speak himself,)
When this same lusty gentleman was got.
Upon his death-bed he by will bequeath'd
His lands to me; and took it, on his death,
That this, my mother's son, was none of his;
And, if he were, he came into the world
Full fourteen weeks before the course of time.
Then, good my liege, let me have what is mine,
My father's land, as was my father's will.

K. John. Sirrah, your brother is legitimate;
Your father's wife did after wedlock bear him:
And, if she did play false, the fault was hers;
Which fault lies on the hazards of all husbands
That marry wives. Tell me, how if my brother,
Who, as you say, took pains to get this son,
Had of your father claim'd this son for his?
In sooth, good friend, your father might have kept
This calf, bred from his cow, from all the world;
In sooth, he might: then, if he were my brother's,
My brother might not claim him; nor your father,
Being none of his, refuse him: this concludes,-
My mother's son did get your father's heir;
Your father's heir must have your father's land.
Rob. Shall then my father's will be of no force,
To dispossess that child which is not his?

Bast. Of no more force to dispossess me, Sir,
Than was his will to get ine, as I think.

Eli. Whether hadst thou rather be a Faulconbridge, And like thy brother, to enjoy thy land;

Or the reputed son of Coeur-de-lion,

Lord of thy presence, and no land beside?

Bast. Madam, an if my brother had my shape,

And I had his, Sir Robert his, like him;

And if my legs were two such riding-rods,

My arms such eel-skins stuff'd; my face so thin,

That in mine ear I durst not stick a rose,

Lest men should say, Look, where three-farthings goes! And, to his shape, were heir to all this land,

Would I might never stir from off this place,

I'd give it every foot to have this face;

I would not be Sir Nob in any case.

Eli. I like thee well; wilt thou forsake thy fortune, Bequeath thy land to him, and follow me?

I am a soldier, and now bound to France.

Bast. Brother, take you my land, I'll take my chance:
Your face hath got five hundred pounds a-year;
Yot sell your face for fivepence, and 'tis dear.
Madam, I'll follow you unto the death.

Eli. Nay, I would have you go before me thither.
Bast. Our country manners give our betters way.
K. John. What is thy name?

Bast. Philip, my liege; so is my name begun;
Philip, good old Sir Robert's wife's eldest son.

K. John. From henceforth bear his name whose form

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Who dares not stir by day, must walk by night;

And have is have, however men do catch: Near or far off, well won is still well shot; And I am I, howe'er I was begot.

[desire,

K. John. Go, Faulconbridge; now hast thou thy A landless knight makes thee a landed 'squire.— Come, Madam, and come, Richard; we must speed For France, for France; for it is more than need. Bast. Brother, adieu; good fortune come to thee! For thou wast got i' the way of honesty.

[Exeunt all but the Bastard

A foot of honour better than I was;
But many a many foot of land the worse.
Well, now can I make any Joan a lady:-
"Good den, Sir Richard,"-"God-a-mercy, fellow;"
And if his name be George, I'll call him Peter:
For new-made honour doth forget men's names;
'Tis too respective, and too sociable,

For your conversion. Now your traveller,-
He and his tooth-pick at my worship's mess;
And when my knightly stomach is sufficed,
Why then I suck my teeth, and catechise
My picked man of countries:-"My dear Sir,"
(Thus, leaning on mine elbow, I begin,)
"I shall beseech you"-That is question now;
And then comes answer like an ABC-book:
"O Sir," says answer, "at your best command;
At your employment; at your service, Sir:"-
"No, Sir," says question, "I, sweet Sir, at yours:"
And so, ere answer knows what question would,
(Saving in dialogue of compliment,
And talking of the Alps, and Apennines,
The Pyrenean, and the river Po.)
It draws toward supper in conclusion so.
But this is worshipful society,

And fits the mounting spirit, like myself:
For he is but a bastard to the time,
That doth not smack of observation,
(And so am I, whether I smack or no ;)
And not alone in habit and device,
Exterior form, outward accoutrement:
But from the inward motion to deliver
Sweet, sweet, sweet poison for the age's tooth;
Which, though I will not practise to deceive,
Yet, to avoid deceit, I mean to learn;
For it shall strew the footsteps of my rising.-
But who comes in such haste, in riding robes?
What woman-post is this? hath she no husband,
That will take pains to blow a horn before her?

Enter LADY FAULCONBRIDGE and JAMES GURNEY.
O me! it is my mother?-How now, good lady!
What brings you here to court so hastily?
Lady F. Where is that slave, thy brother? where is he
That holds in chase mine honour up and down?
Bast. My brother Robert? old Sir Robert's son?
Colbrand the giant, that same mighty man?

Is it Sir Robert's son, that you seek so?

Lady F. Sir Robert's son! Ay, thou unreverend boy, Sir Robert's son: why scorn'st thou at Sir Robert? He is Sir Robert's son; and so art thou.

Bast. James Gurney, wilt thou give us leave a while? Gur. Good leave, good Philip.

Bast. Philip?-sparrow!-James,

There's toys abroad; anon I'll tell thee more.

[Exit GURNEY.

Madam, I was not old Sir Robert's son;
Sir Robert might have eat his part in me
Upon Good-Friday, and ne'er broke his fast:
Sir Robert could do well; marry, (to confess,)
Could he get me? Sir Robert could not do it;
We know his handy-work:-therefore, good mother,
To whom am I beholden for these limbs?
Sir Robert never holp to make this leg.

Lady F. Hast thou conspired with thy brother too,
That for thine own gain shouldst defend mine honour?
What means this scorn, thou most untoward knave?
Bast. Knight, knight, good mother,-Basilisco-like:
What! I am dubb'd; I have it on my shoulder.
But, mother, I am not Sir Robert's son;

I have disclaim'd Sir Robert, and my land;
Legitimation, name, and all is gone:

Then, good my mother, let me know my father;
Some proper man, I hope; who was it, mother?

Lady F. Hast thou denied thyself a Faulconbridge?
Bast. As faithfully as I deny the devil.

Lady F. King Richard Coeur-de-lion was thy father. By long and vehement suit I was seduced

To make room for him in my husband's bed :-
Heaven lay not my transgression to my charge!
Thou art the issue of my dear offence,

Which was so strongly urged, past my defence.
Bast. Now, by this light, were I to get again,
Madam, I would not wish a better father.
Some sins do bear their privilege on earth,
And so doth yours; your fault was not your folly:
Needs must you lay your heart at his dispose,-
Subjected tribute to commanding love,-
Against whose fury and unmatched force
The aweless lion could not wage the fight,
Nor keep his princely heart from Richard's hand.
He, that perforce robs lions of their hearts,
May easily win a woman's. Ay, my mother,
With all my heart I thank thee for my father!
Who lives and dares but say thou didst not well
When I was got, I'll send his soul to hell.
Come, lady, I will shew thee to my kin;

And they shall say, when Richard me begot,
If thou hadst said him nay, it had been sin:
Who says it was, he lies; I say, 'twas not. [Exeunt.

ACT II

SCENE I.RANCE. Before the Walls of ANGIERS. Enter, on one side, the ARCHDUKE OF AUSTRIA and forces; on the other, PHILIP, King of France, and forces; LEWIS, CONSTANCE, ARTHUR, and Attendants. Lew. Before Angiers well met, brave Austria.Arthur, that great fore-runner of thy blood, Richard, that robb'd the lion of his heart, And fought the holy wars in Palestine,

By this brave duke came early to his grave:

And, for amends to his posterity,

At our importance hither is he come,

To spread his colours, boy, in thy behalf;
And to rebuke the usurpation

Of thy unnatural uncle, English John:

Embrace him, love him, give him welcome hither.
Arth. God shall forgive you Coeur-de-lion's death,
The rather, that you give his offspring life,
Shadowing their right under your wings of war:
I give you welcome with a powerless hand,
But with a heart full of unstained love:
Welcome before the gates of Angiers, duke.

Lew. A noble boy! Who would not do thee right?
Aust. Upon thy cheek lay I this zealous kiss,
As seal to this indenture of my love;
That to my home I will no more return,
Till Angiers, and the right thou hast in France,
Together with that pale, that white-faced shore,
Whose foot spurns back the ocean's roaring tides,
And coops from other lands her islanders,
Even till that England, hedged in with the main,
That water-walled bulwark, still secure
And confident from foreign purposes,
Even till that utmost corner of the west
Salute thee for her king: till then, fair boy,
Will I not think of home, but follow arms.

Const. O, take his mother's thanks, a widow's thanks, Till your strong hand shall help to give him strength, To make a more requital to your love.

Aust. The peace of heaven is theirs, that lift their In such a just and charitable war.

[swords

K. Phi. Well then, to work; our cannon shall be Against the brows of this resisting town.

Call for our chiefest men of discipline,
To cull the plots of best advantages:
We'll lay before this town our royal bones,
Wade to the market-place in Frenchmen's blood,
But we will make it subject to this boy.

Const. Stay for an answer to your embassy,
Lest unadvised you stain your swords with blood:
My lord Chatillon may from England bring
That right in peace, which here we urge in war;
And then we shall repeat each drop of blood,
That hot rash haste so indirectly shed.

Enter CHATILLON.

K. Phi. A wonder, lady!-lo, upon thy wish, Our messenger Chatillon is arrived.— What England says, say briefly, gentle lord, We coldly pause for thee; Chatillon, speak.

[bent

Chat. Then turn your forces from this paltry siege, And stir them up against a mightier task. England, impatient of your just demands, Hath put himself in arms; the adverse winds, Whose leisure I have stay'd, have given him time To land his legions all as soon as I:

His marches are expedient to this town,

His forces strong, his soldiers confident.
With him along is come the mother-queea,
An Até, stirring him to blood and strife;
With her her niece, the lady Blanch of Spain;
With them a bastard of the king deceased:
And all the unsettled humours of the land,
Rash, inconsiderate, fiery voluntaries,
With ladies' faces, and fierce dragons' spleens,-
Have sold their fortunes at their native homes,
Bearing their birthrights proudly on their backs,
To make a hazard of new fortunes here.
In brief, a braver choice of dauntless spirits,
Than now the English bottoms have waft o'er,
Did never float upon the swelling tide,

To do offence and scath in Christendom.

The interruption of their churlish drums [Drums beat. Cuts off more circumstance: they are at hand,

To parley, or to fight; therefore, prepare.

K. Phi. How much unlook'd for is this expedition!
Aust. By how much unexpected, by so much
We must awake endeavour for defence;
For courage mounteth with occasion:
Let them be welcome, then; we are prepared.

Enter KING JOHN, ELINOR, BLANCH, the Bastard,
PEMBROKE, and forces.

K. John. Peace be to France, if France in peace
Our just and lineal entrance to our own! [permit
If not; bleed France, and peace ascend to heaven!
Whiles we, God's wrathful agent, do correct
Their proud contempt that beat his peace to heaven
K. Phi. Peace be to England, if that war return
From France to England, there to live in peace!
England we love; and, for that England's sake,
With burden of our armour here we sweat.
This toil of ours should be a work of thine;
But thou from loving England art so far,
That thou hast under-wrought his lawful king,
Cut off the sequence of posterity,
Outfaced infant state, and done a rape
Upon the maiden virtue of the crown.
Look here upon thy brother Geffrey's face;-
These eyes, these brows, were moulded out of his :
This little abstract doth contain that large,
Which died in Geffrey; and the hand of time
Shall draw this brief into as huge a volume.
That Geffrey was thy elder brother born,
And this his son; England was Geffrey's right,
And this is Geffrey's. In the name of God,
How comes it, then, that thou art call'd a king,
When living blood doth in these temples beat,
Which owe the crown that thou o'ermasterest?
K. John. From whom hast thou this great commis-
sion, France,

To draw my answer from thy articles?
K. Phi. From that supernal Judge, that stirs good
In any breast of strong authority,
[thoughts

To look into the blots and stains of right.
That Judge hath made me guardian to this boy.
Under whose warrant I impeach thy wrong;
And by whose help I mean to chastise it.

K. John. Alack, thou dost usurp authority.
K. Phi. Excuse; it is to beat usurping down.
Eli. Who is it thou dost call usurper, France?
Const. Let me make answer;-thy usurping son.
Eli. Out, insolent! thy bastard shall be king,
That thou mayst be a queen, and check the world!
Const. My bed was ever to thy son as true,
As thine was to thy husband: and this boy
Liker in feature to his father Geffrey,

Than thou and John in manners; being as like,

As rain to water, or devil to his dam.

My boy a bastard! By my soul, I think
His father never was so true begot;

It cannot be, an if thou wert his mother.

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Bast. One that will play the devil, Sir, with you, And 'a may catch your hide and you alone. You are the hare of whom the proverb goes, Whose valour plucks dead lions by the beard; I'll smoke your skin-coat, an I catch you right; Sirrah, look to't; i' faith, I will, ' faith.

Blanch. O, well did he become that lion's robe. That did disrobe the lion of that robe!

Bast. It lies as sightly on the back of him,

As great Alcides' shoes upen an ass:-
But, ass, I'll take that burden from your back,

P

Or lay on that shall make your shoulders crack.
Aust. What cracker is this same, that deafs our ears
With this abundance of superfluous breath?

K. Phi. Lewis, determine what we shall do straight.
Lew. Women and fools, break off your conference.-
King John, this is the very sum of all,-
England, and Ireland, Anjou, Touraine, Maine,
In right of Arthur do I claim of thee:
Wilt thou resign them, and lay down thy arms?

K. John. My life as soon:-I do defy thee, France. Arthur of Bretagne, yield thee to my hand; And, out of my dear love, I'll give thee more Than e'er the coward hand of France can win: Submit thee, boy.

Eli. Come to thy grandam, child.

Const. Do, child, go to it' grandam, child:
Give grandam kingdom, and it' grandam will
Give it a plum, a cherry, and a fig:
There's a good grandam.

Arth. Good my mother, peace!

I would that I were low laid in my grave;
I am not worth this coil that's made for me.

Eli. His mother shames him so, poor boy, he weeps Const. Now shame upon you, whe'r she does, or no! His grandam's wrongs, and not his mother's shames, Draw those heaven-moving pearls from his poor eyes, Which heaven shall take in nature of a fee;

Ay, with these crystal beads heaven shall be bribed
To do him justice, and revenge on you.

Eli. Thou monstrous slanderer of heaven and earth!
Const. Thou monstrous injurer of heaven and earth!
Call not me slanderer; thou and thine usurp
The dominations, royalties, and rights,

Of this oppressed boy: this is thy eldest son's son,
Infortunate in nothing but in thee;

Thy sins are visited in this poor child;
The canon of the law is laid on him,
Being but the second generation
Removed from thy sin-conceiving womb.
K. John. Bedlam, have done.
Const. I have but this to say,-

That he's not only plagued for her sin,

But God hath made her sin and her the plague

On this removed issue, plagued for her,

And with her plague, her sin; his injury

Her injury, the beadle to her sin;

All punish'd in the person of this child,

And all for her; a plague upon her!.

Eli. Thou unadvised scold, I can produce

A will, that bars the title of thy son.

Const. Ay, who doubts that? a will! a wicked will;

A woman's will; a canker'd grandam's will!

K. Phi. Peace, lady; pause, or be more temperate:

It ill beseems this presence, to cry aim

To these ill-tuned repetitions.

Some trumpet summon hither to the walls
These men of Angiers; let us hear them speak,
Whose title they admit, Arthur's or John's.

Trumpets sound. Enter Citizens upon the walls.

1 Cit. Who is it that hath warn'd us to the walls? K. Phi. 'Tis France, for England.

K. John. England, for itself:

You men of Angiers, and my loving subjects,

K. Phi. You loving men of Angiers, Arthur's subOur trumpet call'd you to this gentle parle.

[jects,

K. John. For our advantage; therefore, hear us first.-
These flags of France, that are advanced here
Before the eye and prospect of your town,
Have hither march'd to your endamagement:
The cannons have their bowels full of wrath;
And ready mounted are they, to spit forth
Their iron indignation 'gainst your walls:
All preparation for a bloody siege,

And merciless proceeding by these French,
Confront your city's eyes, your winking gates;
And, but for our approach, those sleeping stones,
That as a waist do girdle you about,

By the compulsion of their ordnance
By this time from their fixed beds of lime

Had been dishabited, and wide havoc made

For bloody power to rus pon your peace.
But, on the sight of us, your lawful king,-
Who painfully, with much expedient march,
Have brought a countercheck before your gates,
To save unscratch'd your city's threaten'd cheeks,-
Behold, the French, amazed, vouchsafe a parle:
And now, instead of bullets wrapp'd in fire,
To make a shaking fever in your walls,
They shoot but calm words, folded up in smoke,
To make a faithless error in your ears:

Which trust accordingly, kind citizens,
And let us in, your king; whose labour'd spirits
Forwearied in this action of swift speed,
Crave harbourage within your city walls.

K. Phi. When I have said, make answer to us both
Lo, in this right hand, whose protection
Is most divinely vow'd upon the right
Of him it holds, stands young Plantagenet;
Son to the elder brother of this man,

And king o'er him, and all that he enjoys:
For this down-trodden equity, we tread

In warlike march these greens before your town;
Being no further enemy to you,
Than the constraint of hospitable zeal,
In the relief of this oppressed child,
Religiously provokes. Be pleased, then,
To pay that duty, which you truly owe,

To him that owes it; namely, this young prince:
And then our arms, like to a muzzled bear,
Save in aspect, have all offence seal'd up;
Our cannons' malice vainly shall be spent
Against the invulnerable clouds of heaven;
And, with a blessed and unvex'd retire,
With unhack'd swords, and helmets all unbruised,
We will bear home that lusty blood again,
Which here we came to spout against your town,
And leave your children, wives, and you, in peace.
But if you fondly pass our proffer'd offer,
'Tis not the roundure of your old-faced walls
Can hide you from our messengers of war;
Though all these English, and their discipline,
Were harbour'd in their rude circumference.
Then, tell us, shall your city call us lord,
In that behalf which we have challenged it?
Or shall we give the signal to our rage,
And stalk in blood to our possession?

1 Cit. In brief, we are the king of England's subjects: For him, and in his right, we hold this town.

K. John. Acknowledge then the king, and let me in. 1 Cit. That can we not: but he that proves the king,

To him will we prove loyal; till that time,

Have we ramm'd up our gates against the world.

K. John. Doth not the crown of England prove the And if not that, I bring you witnesses, [king) Twice fifteen thousand hearts of England's breed,

Bast. Bastards, and else.

K. John. To verify our title with their lives.
K. Phi. As many, and as well-born bloods as those,-
Bast. Some bastards, too.

K. Phi. Stand in his face to contradict his claim. 1 Cit. Till you compound whose right is worthiest, We, for the worthiest, hold the right from both.

K. John. Then God forgive the sin of all those souls That to their everlasting residence,

Before the dew of evening fall, shall fleet,
In dreadful trial of our kingdom's king!

K. Phi. Amen, Amen!-Mount, chevaliers! to arms! Bast. St George, that swinged the dragon, and e'er Sits on his horseback at mine hostess' door, Teach us some fence!-[To AUSTRIA.] Sirrah, were I at At your den, sirrah, with your lioness, I'd set an ox-head to your lion's hide, And make a monster of you.

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French Herald, with trumpets, to the gates.
F. Her. You men of Angiers, open wide your gates,
And let young Arthur, duke of Bretagne, in;
Who, by the hand of France, this day hath made
Much work for tears in many an English mother,
Whose sons lie scatter'd on the bleeding ground:
Many a widow's husband grovelling lies,
Coldly embracing the discolour'd earth;
And victory, with little loss, doth play
Upon the dancing banners of the French;
Who are at hand, triumphantly display'd,"

To enter conquerors, and to proclaim
Arthur of Bretagne, England's king, and yours.

Enter an English Herald, with trumpets.
E. Her. Rejoice, you men of Angiers, ring your bells;
King John, your king and England's, doth approach,
Commander of this hot malicious day!

Their armours, that march'd hence so silver-bright
Hither return all gilt with Frenchmen's blood;
There stuck no plume in any English crest,
That is removed by a staff of France;

Our colours do return in those same hande

That did display them when we first march'd fort;
And, like a jolly troop of huntsmen, come
Our lusty English, all with purpled hands,
Dyed in the dying slaughter of their foes:
Open your gates, and give the victors way.

Cit. Heralds, from off our towers we might behold,
From first to last, the onset and retire
Of both your armies; whose equality
By our best eyes cannot be censured:
Blood hath bought blood, and blows have answer'd blows;
Strength match'd with strength, and power confronted
Both are alike; and both alike we like.
[power;
One must prove greatest: while they weigh so even,
We hold our town for neither; yet for both.
Enter, at one side, KING JOHN, with his power, ELINOR,
BLANCH, and the Bastard; at the other, KING PHILIP,
LEWIS, AUSTRIA, and forces.

[away?

K. John. France, hast thou yet more blood to cast Say, shall the current of our right run on? Whose passage, vex'd with thy impediment, Shall leave his native channel, and o'er-swell With course disturb'd even thy confining shores, Unless thou let his silver water keep

A peaceful progress to the ocean.

K. Phi. England, thou hast not saved one drop of blood, In this hot trial, more than we of France;

Rather, lost more: and by this hand I swear,
That sways the earth this climate overlooks,
Before we will lay down our just-borne arms,

We'll put thee down, 'gainst whom these arms we bear,
Or add a royal number to the dead;
Gracing the scroll, that tells of this war's loss,
With slaughter coupled to the name of kings.

Bast. Ha, majesty! how high thy glory towers,
When the rich blood of kings is set on fire!

O, now doth death line his dead chaps with steel;
The swords of soldiers are his teeth, his fangs;
And now he feasts, mouthing the flesh of men,
In undetermined differences of kings.-
Why stand these royal fronts amazed thus?
Cry, havoc, kings! back to the stained field,
You equal potents, fiery-kindled spirits!
Then let confusion of one part confirm

The other's peace; till then, blows, blood, and death!
K. John. Who's party do the townsmen yet admit?
K. Phi. Speak, citizens, for England; who's your
king?

1 C. The king of England, when we know the king.
K. Phi. Know him in us, that here hold up his right.
K. John. In us, that are our own great deputy,
And bear possession of our person here;
Lord of our presence, Angiers, and of you.

1 Cit. A greater power than we denies all this;
And, till it be undoubted, we do lock
Our former scruple in our strong-barr'd gates:
King'd of our fears; until our fears, resolved,
Be by some certain king purged and deposed.

[kings,

Bast. By heaven, these scroyles of Angiers flout you,
And stand securely on their battlements,
As in a theatre, whence they gape and point
At your industrious scenes and acts of death.
Your royal presences be ruled by me;
Do like the mutines of Jerusalem,

Be friends a while, and both conjointly bend
Your sharpest deeds of malice on this town:
By east and west let France and England mount
Their battering cannon, charged to the mouths,
Till their soul-fearing clamours have brawl'd down
The flinty ribs of this contemptuous city:
I'd play incessantly upon these jades,
Even till unfenced desolation
Leave them as naked as the vulgar air.
That done, dissever your united strengths,
And part your mingled colours once again;
Turn face to face, and bloody point to point;
Then, in a moment, fortune shall cull forth
Out of one side her happy minion:

To whom in favour she shall give the day,
And kiss him with a glorious victory.
How like you this wild counsel, mighty states?
Smacks it not something of the policy?

K. John. Now, by the sky that hangs above our i cads,

I like it well.-France, shall we knit our powers,
And lay this Angiers even with the ground;
Then, after, fight who shall be king of it?

Bast. An if thou hast the mettle of a king,

Being wrong'd, as we are, by this peevish town,-
Turn thou the mouth of thy artillery,

As we will ours, against these saucy walls:
And when that we have dash'd them to the ground,
Why, then defy each other; and, pell-mell,
Make work upon ourselves, for heaven or hell.

Y. Phi. Let it be so.-Say, where will you assault! . John. We from the west will send destruction this city's bosom.

Aust. I from the north.

K. Phi. Our thunder from the south

Shall rain their drift of bullets on this town.

Bast. O prudent discipline! From north to south, Austria and France shoot in each other's mouth: [Aside. I'll stir them to it.-Come, away, away!

1 Cit. Hear us, great kings: vouchsafe a while to stay, And I shall shew you peace, and fair-faced league; Win you this city without stroke or wound; Rescue those breathing lives to die in beds, That here come sacrifices for the field: Perséver not, but hear me, mighty kings.

K. John. Speak on, with favour; we are bent to hear. 1 Cit. That daughter there of Spain, the lady Blanch Is near to England; look upon the years

Of Lewis the Dauphin, and that lovely maid:
If lusty love should go in quest of beauty,
Where should he find it fairer than in Blanch?
If zealous love should go in search of virtue,
Where should he find it purer than in Blanch?
If love ambitious sought a match of birth,
Whose veins bound richer blood than lady Blanch?
Such as she is, in beauty, virtue, birth,

Is the young Dauphin every way complete:
If not complete, Ö, say he is not she;

And she again wants nothing to name want,
If want it be not, that she is not he:
He is the half part of a blessed man,
Left to be finished by such a she;
And she a fair divided excellence,
Whose fulness of perfection lies in him.
O, two such silver currents, when they join,
Do glorify the banks that bound them in:
And two such shores to two such streams made one,
Two such controlling bounds shall you be, kings,

To these two princes, if you marry them.
This union shall do more than battery can
To our fast-closed gates; for, at this match,
With swifter spleen than powder can enforce,
The mouth of passage shall we fling wide ope,
And give you entrance; but without this match,
The sea enragèd is not half so deaf,

Lions more confident, mountains and rocks
More free from motion; no, not death himself
In mortal fury half so peremptory,

As we to keep this city.

Bast. Here's a stay,

That shakes the rotten carcase of old death

Out of his rags! Here's a large mouth, indeed,
That spits forth death and mountains, rocks and seas;
Talks as familiarly of roaring lions,

As maids of thirteen do of puppy-dogs!
What cannoneer begot this lusty blood?

He speaks plain cannon, fire and smoke and bounce,
He gives the bastinado with his tongue;

Our ears are cudgell'd; not a word of his,

But buffets better than a fist of France:

Zounds! I was never so bethump'd with words,

Since I first call'd my brother's father dad.

Eli. Son, list to this conjunction, make this match; Give with our niece a dowry large enough:

For by this knot thou shalt so surely tie

Thy now unsured assurance to the crown,

That yon green boy shall have no sun to ripe

The bloom that promiseth a mighty fruit.

I see a yielding in the looks of France;

Mark, how they whisper: urge them, while their souls
Are capable of this ambition:

Lest zeal, now melted by the windy breath
Of soft petitions, pity, and remorse,

Cool and congeal again to what it was.

1 Cit. Why answer not the double majesties This friendly treaty of our threaten'd town?

K. Phi. Speak England first, that hath been forward To speak unto this city: what say you?

[first

K. John. If that the Dauphin there, thy princely son, Can in this book of beauty read, "I love," Her dowry shall weigh equal with a queen: For Anjou, and fair Touraine, Maine, Poictiers, And all that we upon this side the sea (Except this city now by us besieged) Find liable to our crown and dignity,

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