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Let me wipe off this honourable dew,
That silverly doth progress on thy cheeks:
My heart hath melted at a lady's tears,
Being an ordinary inundation;
But this effusion of such manly drops,
This shower, blown up by tempest of the soul, 50
Startles mine eyes, and makes me more amaz'd
Than had I seen the vaulty top of heaven
Figur'd quite o'er with burning meteors.
Lift up thy brow, renowned Salisbury,
And with a great heart heave away this storm :
Commend these waters to those baby eyes
That never saw the giant world enrag'd;
Nor met with fortune other than at feasts,
Full warm of blood, of mirth. of gossiping.
Come, come; for thou shalt thrust thy hand as
Into the purse of rich prosperity
As Lewis himself so, nobles, shall you all,
That knit your sinews to the strength of mine.
Enter PANDULPH, attended.
And even there, methinks, an angel spake :
Look! where the holy legate comes apace,
To give us warrant from the hand of heaven,
And on our actions set the name of right
With holy breath.
Hail, noble prince of France!
The next is this: King John hath reconcil'd
Himself to Rome; his spirit is come in
That so stood out against the holy church,
The great metropolis and see of Rome.
Therefore thy threat'ning colours now wind up,
And tame the savage spirit of wild war,
That, like a lion foster'd up at hand,
It may lie gently at the foot of peace,
And be no further harmful than in show.
What lusty trumpet thus doth summon us?
Enter the Bastard, attended.
Bast. According to the fair play of the world,
Let me have audience; I am sent to speak:
My holy Lord of Milan, from the king
I come, to learn how you have dealt for him;
And, as you answer, I do know the scope
And warrant limited unto my tongue.
Pand. The Dauphin is too wilful-opposite,
And will not temporize with my entreaties:
He flatly says he'll not lay down his arms.
Bast. By all the blood that ever fury breath'd,
The youth says well. Now hear our English king;
For thus his royalty doth speak in me.
He is prepar'd; and reason too he should: 130
This apish and unmannerly approach,
This harness'd masque and unadvised revel,
This unhair'd sauciness and boyish troops,
The king doth smile at; and is well prepar'd
To whip this dwarfish war, these pigmy arms,
From out the circle of his territories.
That hand which had the strength, even at your
To cudgel you and make you take the hatch;
Lew. Your grace shall pardon me; I will not To dive like buckets in concealed wells; back:
I am too high-born to be propertied,
To be a secondary at control,
Or useful servingman and instrument,
To any sovereign state throughout the world.
Your breath first kindled the dead coal of wars
Between this chastis'd kingdom and myself,
And brought in matter that should feed this fire;
And now 'tis far too huge to be blown out
With that same weak wind which enkindled it.
You taught me how to know the face of right,
Acquainted me with interest to this land,
Yea, thrust this enterprise into my heart;
And come ye now to tell me John hath made
His peace with Rome? What is that peace to
I, by the honour of my marriage-bed,
After young Arthur, claim this land for mine;
And, now it is half-conquer'd, must I back
Because that John hath made his peace with
Am I Rome's slave? What penny hath Rome
What men provided, what munition sent,
To underprop this action? Is 't not I
That undergo this charge? who else but I,
And such as to my claim are liable,
Sweat in this business and maintain this war?
Have I not heard these islanders shout out,
Vive le roy as I have bank'd their towns?
Have I not here the best cards for the game
To win this easy match play'd for a crown?
To crouch in litter of your stable planks;
To lie like pawns lock'd up in chests and trunks;
To hug with swine; to seek sweet safety out
In vaults and prisons; and to thrill and shake
Even at the crying of your nation's crow,
Thinking this voice an armed Englishman :
Shall that victorious hand be feebled here
That in your chambers gave you chastisement?
No! Know, the gallant monarch is in arms,
And like an eagle o'er his aery towers,
To souse annoyance that comes near his nest. 150
And you degenerate, you ingrate revolts,
You bloody Neroes, ripping up the womb
Of your dear mother England, blush for shame :
For your own ladies and pale-visag'd maids
Like Amazons come tripping after drums,
Their thimbles into armed gauntlets change,
Their neelds to lances, and their gentle hearts
To fierce and bloody inclination.
Lew. There end thy brave, and turn thy face
We grant thou can'st outscold us : fare thee well;
We hold our time too precious to be spent
With such a brabbler.
An echo with the clamour of thy drum,
And even at hand a drum is ready brac'd
That shall reverberate all as loud as thine;
Sound but another, and another shall
As loud as thine rattle the welkin's ear
And mock the deep-mouth'd thunder: for at
Not trusting to this halting legate here,
Whom he hath us'd rather for sport than need,
Is war-like John; and in his forehead sits
A bare-ribb'd death, whose office is this day
To feast upon whole thousands of the French.
Lew. Strike up our drums, to find this danger
Bast. And thou shalt find it, Dauphin, do not doubt. Exeunt. 180
SCENE III.-The Same. A Field of Battle.
Alarums. Enter King JOHN and HUBERT.
K. John. How goes the day with us? O! tell
Hub. Badly, I fear. How fares your majesty?
K. John. This fever, that hath troubled me so
Lies heavy on me: O! my heart is sick.
Sal. May this be possible? may this be true!
Mel. Have I not hideous death within my view,
Retaining but a quantity of life,
Which bleeds away, even as a form of wax
Resolveth from his figure 'gainst the fire?
What in the world should make me now deceive,
Since I must lose the use of all deceit ?
Why should I then be false, since it is true
That I must die here and live hence by truth?
I say again, if Lewis do win the day,
He is forsworn, if e'er those eyes of yours
Behold another day break in the east:
But even this night, whose black contagious
Already smokes about the burning crest
of the old, feeble, and day-wearied sun,
Even this ill night, your breathing shall expire,
Even with a treacherous fine of all your lives,
Paying the fine of rated treachery
If Lewis by your assistance win the day.
Commend me to one Hubert with your king; #0
The love of him, and this respect besides,
For that my grandsire was an Englishman,
Mess. My lord, your valiant kinsman, Faulcon- Awakes my conscience to confess all this. bridge,
Desires your majesty to leave the field,
And send him word by me which way you go.
K. John. Tell him, toward Swinstead, to the
Mess. Be of good comfort: for the great supply
That was expected by the Dauphin here,
Are wreck'd three nights ago on Goodwin sands.
This news was brought to Richard but even now.
The French fight coldly, and retire themselves.
K. John. Ay me! this tyrant fever burns me up,
And will not let me welcome this good news.
Set on toward Swinstead: to my litter straight;
Weakness possesseth me, and I am faint. Exeunt.
Enter MELUN wounded, and led by Soldiers.
Mel. Lead me to the revolts of England here.
Sal. When we were happy we had other names.
Pem. It is the Count Melun.
Wounded to death. Mel. Fly, noble English; you are bought and sold;
Unthread the rude eye of rebellion,
And welcome home again discarded faith.
Seek out King John and fall before his feet;
For if the French be lords of this loud day,
He means to recompense the pains you take
In lieu whereof, I pray you, bear me hence
From forth the noise and rumour of the field,
Where I may think the remnant of my thoughts
In peace, and part this body and my soul
With contemplation and devout desires.
Sal. We do believe thee: and beshrew my soul
But I do love the favour and the form
Of this most fair occasion, by the which
We will untread the steps of damned flight,
And like a bated and retired flood,
Leaving our rankness and irregular course,
Stoop low within those bounds we have o'erlook'd,
And calmly run on in obedience,
Even to our ocean, to our great King John.
My arm shall give thee help to bear thee hence,
For I do see the cruel pangs of death
Right in thine eye. Away, my friends! New
And happy newness,
that intends old right.
Exeunt, leading off MELUN.
And your supply, which you have wish'd so long,
Are cast away and sunk, on Goodwin sands.
Lew. Ah! foul shrewd news. Beshrew thy
I did not think to be so sad to-night
As this hath made me. Who was he that said
King John did fly an hour or two before
The stumbling night did part our weary powers?
Mess. Whoever spoke it, it is true, my lord.
Lew. Well; keep good quarter and good care
The day shall not be up so soon as I,
To try the fair adventure of to-morrow.
Bast. Show me the very wound of this ill news: I am no woman; I'll not swoon at it.
Hub. The king, I fear, is poison'd by a monk: I left him almost speechless; and broke out To acquaint you with this evil, that you might The better arm you to the sudden time Than if you had at leisure known of this.
Bast. How did he take it? who did taste to him? Hub. A monk, I tell you; a resolved villain, Whose bowels suddenly burst out: the king 30 Yet speaks, and peradventure may recover.
Bast. Whom didst thou leave to tend his majesty ?
Hub. Why, know you not? the lords are all come back.
And brought Prince Henry in their company; At whose request the king hath pardon'd them, And they are all about his majesty.
Bast. Withhold thine indignation, mighty heaven,
And tempt us not to bear above our power!
Pem. His highness yet doth speak; and holds belief
That, being brought into the open air,
It would allay the burning quality
Of that fell poison which assaileth him.
P. Hen. Let him be brought into the orchard
Doth he still rage?
He is more patient Than when you left him even now he sung.
P. Hen. O vanity of sickness! fierce extremes In their continuance will not feel themselves. Death, having prey'd upon the outward parts, Leaves them, invisible; and his siege is now Against the mind, the which he pricks and wounds With many legions of strange fantasies, Which, in their throng and press to that last hold.
Confound themselves. Tis strange that death should sing.
I am the cygnet to this pale faint swan,
Who chants a doleful hymn to his own death,
And from the organ-pipe of frailty sings
His soul and body to their lasting rest.
Sal. Be of good comfort, prince; for you are born
To set a form upon that indigest
Which he hath left so shapeless and so rude. Re-enter BIGOT and Attendants, carrying King JOHN in a chair.
K. John. Ay, marry, now my soul hath elbow
It would not out at windows, nor at doors.
There is so hot a summer in my bosom
That all my bowels crumble up to dust:
I am a scribbled form, drawn with a pen
Upon a parchment, and against this fire
Do I shrink up.
How fares your majesty?
K. John. Poison'd, ill fare; dead, forsook,
And none of you will bid the winter come
To thrust his icy fingers in my maw;
Nor let my kingdom's rivers take their course
Through my burn'd bosom; nor entreat the north
To make his bleak winds kiss my parched lips
And comfort me with cold. I do not ask you
I beg cold comfort; and you are so strait
And so ingrateful you deny me that.
P. Hen. O that there were some virtue in my tears,
That might relieve you.
The salt in them is hot.
Within me is a hell; and there the poison
Is as a fiend confin'd to tyrannize
On unreprievable condemned blood.
Bast. O! I am scalded with my violent motion And spleen of speed to see your majesty.
Sal. It seems you know not then so much
The Cardinal Pandulph is within at rest,
Who half an hour since came from the Dauphin,
And brings from him such offers of our peace
As we with honour and respect may take,
With purpose presently to leave this war.
Bast. He will the rather do it when he sees
K. John. O cousin! thou art come to set Ourselves well sinewed to our defence.
The tackle of my heart is crack'd and burn'd,
And all the shrouds wherewith my life should
Are turned to one thread, one little hair;
My heart hath one poor string to stay it by,
Which holds but till thy news be uttered;
And then all this thou seest is but a clod
And module of confounded royalty.
Bast. The Dauphin is preparing hitherward, Where heaven he knows how we shall answer him :
For in a night the best part of my power,
As I upon advantage did remove,
Were in the Washes all unwarily
Devoured by the unexpected flood.
The King dies. Sal. You breathe these dead news in as dead
Sal. Nay, it is in a manner done already;
For many carriages he hath dispatch'd
To the sea-side, and put his cause and quarrel
To the disposing of the cardinal :
With whom yourself, myself, and other lords,
If you think meet, this afternoon will post
To consummate this business happily.
Bast. Let it be so. And you, my noble prince,
With other princes that may best be spar'd,
Shall wait upon your father's funeral.
P. Hen. At Worcester must his body be
Thither shall it then.
And happily may your sweet self put on
The lineal state and glory of the land!
To whom, with all submission, on my knee,
I do bequeath my faithful services
And true subjection everlastingly.
Sal. And the like tender of our love we make. To rest without a spot for evermore.
P. Hen. I have a kind soul that would give you thanks.
And knows not how to do it but with tears. 109
Bast. O let us pay the time but needful woe
Since it hath been beforehand with our griefs.
This England never did, nor never shall,
Lie at the proud foot of a conqueror,
But when it first did help to wound itself.
Now these her princes are come home again,
Come the three corners of the world in arms,
And we shall shock them. Nought shall make
If England to itself do rest but true.
Lords, Heralds, Officers, Soldiers, Gardeners, Keeper, Messenger, Groom, and
SCENE L-London. A Room in the Palace.
Enter King RICHARD, attended; JOHN OF
GAUNT, and other Nobles, with him.
K. Rich. Old John of Gaunt, time-honour'd
Hast thou, according to thy oath and band, Brought hither Henry Hereford thy bold son, Here to make good the boisterous late appeal, Which then our leisure would not let us hear, Against the Duke of Norfolk, Thomas Mowbray? Gaunt. I have, my liege.
K. Rich. Tell me, moreover, hast thou sounded him,
If he appeal the duke on ancient malice,
Or worthily, as a good subject should,
On some known ground of treachery in him?
Gaunt. As near as I could sift him on that
On some apparent danger seen in him
Aim'd at your highness, no inveterate malice.
K. Rich. Then call them to our presence; face
And frowning brow to brow, ourselves will hear
The accuser and the accused freely speak :
Exeunt some Attendants.
High-stomach'd are they both, and full of ire,
In rage deaf as the sea, hasty as fire.
Re-enter Attendants, with BOLINGBROKE and MOWBRAY.
Boling. Many years of happy days befall My gracious sovereign, my most loving liege! Mow. Each day still better other's happiness; Until the heavens, envying earth's good hap, Add an immortal title to your crown!
K. Rich. We thank you both: yet one but flatters us,
As well appeareth by the cause you come;
Namely, to appeal each other of high treason.
Cousin of Hereford, what dost thou object
Against the Duke of Norfolk, Thomas Mowbray?
Boling. First, heaven be the record to my
In the devotion of a subject's love,
Tendering the precious safety of my prince,
And free from other misbegotten hate,
Come I appellant to this princely presence.
Now, Thomas Mowbray, do I turn to thee,
And mark my greeting well; for what I speak
My body shall make good upon this earth,
Or my divine soul answer it in heaven.
Thou art a traitor and a miscreant;
Too good to be so and too bad to live,
Since the more fair and crystal is the sky,
The uglier seem the clouds that in it fly.
Once more, the more to aggravate the note,
With a foul traitor's name stuff I thy throat;