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Which we, God knows, have turn’d another way,
To our own vantage."
K. John. We will heal up all
For we'll create young Arthur duke of Bretagne,
And earl of Richmond; and this rich fair town
We make him lord of.-Call the lady Constance;
Some speedy messenger bid her repair
To our solemnity:—I trust we shall, .
If not fill up the measure of her will,
Yet in some measure satisfy her so,
That we shall stop her exclamation.
Go we, as well as haste will suffer us,
To this unlook'd for unprepared pomp.
[Ereunt all but the Bastard.—The Citizens
retire from the walls.
Bast. Mad world! mad kings! mad composition!
John, to stop Arthur's title in the whole,
Hath willingly departed with a part:
And France, (whose armour conscience buckled on;
Whom zeal and charity brought to the field, -
As God's own soldier,) rounded 5 in the ear
With that same purpose-changer, that sly devil;
That broker, that still breaks the pate of faith;
That daily break-vow; he that wins of all,
Of kings, of beggars, old men, young men, maids;–
Who having no external thing to lose
But the word maid, cheats the poor maid of that;
That smooth-faced gentleman, ticklingcommodity,"—
Commodity, the bias of the world;
The world, who of itself is peised? well,
Made to run even, upon even ground;
Till this advantage, this vile drawing bias,
This sway of motion, this commodity,
Makes it take head from all indifferency,
From all direction, purpose, course, intent:
And this same bias, this commodity,
This bawd, this broker, this all-changing word,
Clapp'd on the outward eye of fickle France,
Hath drawn him from his own determin’d aid,
From a resolv’d and honourable war,
To a most base and vile-concluded peace.—
And why rail I on this commodity?
But for because he hath not woo'd me yet:
Not that I have the power to clutch" my-hand,
When his fair angels” would salute my palm:
But for my hand, as unattempted yet,
Like a poor beggar, raileth on the rich.
Well, whiles I am a beggar, I will rail,
And say,+there is no sin, but to be rich;
And being rich, my virtue then shall be,
To say,+there is no vice, but beggary:
Since kings break faith upon commodity,
Gain, be my lord! for I will worship thee! [Erit.
SCENE I. The same. The French King's Tent.
Enter ConstANCE, ARTHUR, and SALISBURY.
Const. Gone to be married! gone to swear a peace! False blood to false blood join'd! Gone to be friends!
Shall Lewis have Blanch 2 and Blanch those pro-
It is not so; thou hast misspoke, misheard;
Be well advis'd, tell o'er thy tale again:
It cannot be; thou dost but say, 'tis so:
I trust, I may not trust thee; for thy word
Is but the vain breath of a common man:
Believe me, I do not believe thee, man;
I have a king's oath to the contrary.
Thou shalt be punish'd for thus frighting me,
For I am sick, and capable" of fears;
Oppress'd with wrongs, and therefore full of fears;
A widow, husbandless, subject to fears;
A woman, naturally born to fears;
And though thou now confess, thou didst but jest
With my vex'd spirits I cannot take a truce,
But they will quake and tremble all this day.
What dost thou mean by shaking of thy head 2
Why dost thou look so sadly on my son
What means that hand upon that breast of thine?
Why holds thine eye that lamentable rheum,
Like a proud river peering * o'er his bounds
Be these sad signs confirmers of thy words :
Then speak again; not all thy former tale,
But this one word, whether thy tale be true. &
Sal. As true, as, I believe, you think them false, *
That give you cause to prove my saying true.
Const. O, if thou teach me to believe this sorrow,
Teach thou this sorrow how to make me die;
And let belief and life encounter so,
As doth the fury of two desperate men,
Which, in the very meeting, fall, and die.—
Lewis marry Blanch' O, boy, then where art thou?
France friend with England! what becomes of me?—
Fellow, be gone; I cannot brook thy sight;
This news hath made thee a most ugly man.
Sal. What other harm have I, good lady, done,
But spoke the harm that is by others done?
Const. Which harm within itself so heinous is,
As it makes harmful all that speak of it.
Arth. I do beseech, you, madam, be content.
Const. If thou, that bid'st me be content, wert
Ugly, and sland'rous to thy mother's womb,
Full of unpleasing blots, and sightless 3 stains,
Lame, foolish, crooked, swart, prodigious, 4
Patch'd with foul moles, and eye-offending marks,
I would not care, I then would be content;
For then I should not love thee; no, nor thou
Become thy great birth, nor deserve a crown.
But thou art fair; and at thy birth, dear boy
Nature and fortune join'd to make thee great:
Of nature's gifts thou may'st with lilies boast,
And with the half-blown rose: but fortune, O !
She is corrupted, chang'd, and won from thee;
She adulterates hourly with thine uncle John;
And with her golden hand hath pluck'd on France
To tread down fair respect of sovereignty,
And made his majesty the bawd to theirs.
France is a bawd to fortune, and king John;
That strumpet fortune, that usurping John :-
Tell me, thou fellow, is not France forsworn ?
Envenom him with words; or get thee gone,
And leave those woes alone, which I alone,
Am bound to under-bear.
Sal. Pardon me, madam,
I may not go without you to the kings.
Const. Thou may'st, thou shalt, I will not go with
thee: I will instruct my sorrows to be proud; For grief is proud, and makes his owner stout. To me, and to the state' of my great grief, Let kings assemble; for my grief's so great, That no supporter but the huge firm earth Can hold it up : here I and sorrow sit; Here is my throne, bid kings come bow to it. [She throws herself on the ground.
Enter King Jo HN, King PHILIP, Lewis, BLANCH, ELINo R, Bastard, Austri A, and Attendants.
K. Phi. "Tis true, fair daughter; and this blessed day, *
Ever in France shall be kept festival:
To solemnize this day, the glorious sun
Stays in his course, and plays the alchemist;
Turning, with splendor of his precious eye,
The meagre cloddy earth to glittering gold:
The yearly course, that brings this day about,
Shall never see it but a holyday.
Const. A wicked day, and not a holyday!—
What hath this day deserv'd? what hath it done;
That it in golden letters should be set,