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Is to be made, then shall this hand and seal
Witness against us to damnation!
How oft the sight of means to do ill deeds,
Makes deeds ill done! Hadest not thou been by,
A fellow by the hand of nature mark'd,
Quoted, and sign'd, to do a deed of shame,
This murder had not come into my mind:
But, taking note of thy abhorr'd aspéct,
Finding thee fit for bloody villainy,
Apt, liable, to be employ'd in danger,
I faintly broke with thee of Arthur's death;
And thou, to be endeared to a king,
Made it no conscience to destroy a prince.
Hub. My lord,

K. John. Hadst thou but shook thy head, or made a pause,

Re-enter HUBERT.

Hub. My lord, they say, five moons were seen to-night:

Four fixed; and the fifth did whirl about
The other four, in wond'rous motion.

K. John. Five moons?

Hub. Old men, and beldams, in the streets Do prophesy upon it dangerously: Young Arthur's death is common in their mouths: And when they talk of him, they shake their heads, And whisper one another in the ear; And he, that speaks, doth gripe the hearer's wrist; Whilst he, that hears, makes fearful action, With wrinkled brows, with nods, with rolling eyes. I saw a smith stand with his hammer, thus, The whilst his iron did on the anvil cool, With open mouth swallowing a tailor's news; Who, with his shears and measure in his hand, Standing on slippers, (which his nimble haste Had falsely thrust upon contráry feet,) Told of a many thousand warlike French, That were embatteled and rank'd in Kent: Another lean unwash'd artificer

Cuts off his tale, and talks of Arthur's death. K. John. Why seek'st thou to possess me with these fears?

Why urgest thou so oft young Arthur's death? Thy hand hath murder'd him: I had mighty cause To wish him dead, but thou hadst none to kill him.

Hub. Had none, my lord! why, did you not provoke me?

K. John. It is the curse of kings, to be attended
By slaves, that take their humours for a warrant
To break within the bloody house of life:
And, on the winking of authority,

To understand a law; to know the meaning
Of dangerous majesty, when, perchance, it frowns
More upon humour than advis'd respect.

Hub. Here is your hand and seal for what I did. K. John. O, when the last account 'twixt heaven and earth

When I spake darkly what I purposed;
Or turn'd an eye of doubt upon my face,
As bid me tell my tale in express words;
Deep shame had struck me dumb, made me break off,
And those thy fears might have wrought fears in me:
But thou didst understand me by my signs,

And didst in signs again parley with sin;

Yea, without stop, didst let thy heart consent,
And, consequently, thy rude hand to act

The deed, which both our tongues held vile to

name.

Out of my sight, and never see me more!
My nobles leave me; and my state is brav'd,
Even at my gates, with ranks of foreign powers:
Nay, in the body of this fleshly land,

This kingdom, this confine of blood and breath,
Hostility and civil tumult reigns
Between my conscience, and my cousin's death.
Hub. Arm you against your other enemies,
I'll make a peace between your soul and you.
Young Arthur is alive: This hand of mine
Is yet a maiden and an innocent hand,
Not painted with the crimson spots of blood.
Within this bosom never enter'd yet
The dreadful motion of a murd'rous thought,
And you have slander'd nature in my form;
Which howsoever rude exteriorly,
Is yet the cover of a fairer mind

Than to be butcher of an innocent child.

K. John. Doth Arthur live? O, haste thee to the

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Enter ARTHUR, on the walls.

Arth.

The wall is high; and yet will I ieap
down: :-

Good ground, be pitiful, and hurt me not!
There's few, or none, do know me; if they did,
This ship-boy's semblance hath disguis'd me quite.
I am afraid; and yet I'll venture it.

If I get down, and do not break my limbs,
I'll find a thousand shifts to get away:
As good to die, and go, as die, and stay.

[Leaps down.

O me! my uncle's spirit is in these stones: Heaven take my soul, and England keep my bones! Dies.

Enter PEMBROKE, SALISBURY, and BIGOT.

Sal. Lords, I will meet him at Saint Edmund's-
Bury;

It is our safety, and we must embrace
This gentle offer of the perilous time.

Pem. Who brought that letter from the cardinal?
Sal. The count Melun, a noble lord of France;
Whose private with me, of the Dauphin's love,
Is much more general than these lines import.

Big. To-morrow morning let us meet him then. Sal. Or, rather then set forward: for 'twill be Two long days' journey, lords, or e'er we meet. Enter the Bastard.

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Sal. Murder, as hating what himself hath done, Doth lay it open, to urge on revenge.

Big. Or, when he doom'd this beauty to a grave, Found it too precious-princely for a grave.

Sal. Sir Richard, what think you? Have you beheld,

Or have you read, or heard? or could you think?
Or do you almost think, although you see,
That you do see? could thought, without this object,
Form such another? This is the very top,
The height, the crest, or crest unto the crest,
Of murder's arms: this is the bloodiest shame,
The wildest savag'ry, the vilest stroke,
That ever wall-ey'd wrath, or staring rage,
Presented to the tears of soft remorse.

Pem. All murders past do stand excus'd in this :
And this so sole, and so unmatchable,
Shall give a holiness, a purity,
To the yet-unbegotten sin of times;
And prove a deadly bloodshed but a jest,
Exampled by this heinous spectacle.

Bast. It is a damned and a bloody work;
The graceless action of a heavy hand,
If that it be the work of any hand.

Sal. If that it be the work of any hand?
We had a kind of light, what would ensue:
It is the shameful work of Hubert's hand;
The practice, and the purpose, of the king:
From whose obedience I forbid my soul,
Kneeling before this ruin of sweet life
And breathing to his breathless excellence
The incense of a vow, a holy vow;

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Never to taste the pleasures of the world.
Never to be infected with delight,
Nor conversant with case and idleness.
Till I have set a glory to this hand.
By giving it the worship of revenge.
Pem. Big. Our souls religiously confirin thy

words.

Enter HUBERT.

Hub. Lords, I am hot with haste in seeking you: Arthur doth live; the king hath sent for you.

Sal. O, he is bold, and blushes not at death: Avaunt, thou hateful villain, get thee gone! Hub. I am no villain.

Sal.

Must I rob the law? [Drawing his sword. Bast. Your sword is bright, sir; put it up again. Sal. Not till I sheath it in a murderer's skin. Hub. Stand back, lord Salisbury, stand back, I say;

By heaven, I think, my sword's as sharp as yours:
I would not have you, lord, forget yourself,
Nor tempt the danger of my true defence;
Lest I, by marking of your rage, forget
Your worth, your greatness, and nobility.

Big. Out, dunghill! dar'st thou brave a nobleman?

Hub. Not for my life: but yet I dare defend My innocent life against an emperor.

Sal. Thou art a murderer.

Hub.

Do not prove me so ; Yet, I am none: Whose tongue soe'er speaks false, Not truly speaks; who speaks not truly, lies. Pem. Cut him to pieces.

Bast.

Keep the peace, I say.
Sal. Stand by, or I shall gall you, Faulconbridge.
Bast. Thou wert better gall the devil, Salisbury:
If thou but frown on me, or stir thy foot,
Or teach thy hasty spleen to do me shame,
I'll strike thee dead. Put up thy sword betime;
Or I'll so maul you and your toasting-iron,
That you shall think the devil is come from heli.
Big. What wilt thou do, renowned Faulcon.
bridge?

Second a villain and a murderer?
Hub. Lord Bigot, I am none.

Big.

Who kill'd this prince? Hub. 'Tis not an hour since I left him well: I honour'd him, I lov'd him; and will weep My date of life out, for his sweet life's loss.

Sal. Trust not those cunning waters of his eyes, For villainy is not without such rheum; And he, long traded in it, makes it seem Like rivers of remorse and innocency. Away, with me, all you whose souls abhor The uncleanly savours of a slaughter-house; For I am stifled with this smell of sin.

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There is not yet so ugly a fiend of hell
As thou shalt be, if thou didst kill this child.
Hub. Upon my soul,

Bast.

If thou didst but consent
To this most cruel act, do but despair,
And, if thou want'st a cord, the smallest thread
That ever spider twisted from her womb
Will serve to strangle thee; a rush will be
A beam to hang thee on; or would'st thou drown
thyself,

Put but a little water in a spoon,
And it shall be as all the ocean,
Enough to stifle such a villain up.
I do suspect thee very grievously.

Hub. If I in act, consent, or sin of thought
Be guilty of the stealing that sweet breath
Which was embounded in this beauteous clay,
Let hell want pains enough to torture me!
I left him well.

Bast.

Go, bear him in thine arms.

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A Room in the Palace.

SCENE I.
The same.
Enter KING JOHN, PANDULPH with the crown, and
Attendants.

K. John. Thus have I yielded up into your hand The circle of my glory.

Pand.

ACT V.

Take again [Giving JOHN the crown. From this my hand, as holding of the pope, Your sovereign greatness and authority.

K. John. Now keep your holy word: go meet the French; And from his holiness use all your power To stop their marches, 'fore we are inflam'd. Our discontented counties do revolt; Our people quarrel with obedience; Swearing allegiance, and the love of soul, To stranger blood, to foreign royalty. This inundation of mistemper'd humour Rests by you only to be qualified. Then pause not; for the present time's so sick, That present medicine must be minister'd, Or overthrow incurable ensues.

Pand. It was my breath that blew this tempest up, Upon your stubborn usage of the pope : But, since you are a gentle convertite, My tongue shall hush again this storm of war, And make fair weather in your blustering land. On this Ascension-day, remember well, Upon your oath of service to the pope, Go I to make the French lay down their arms.

I am amaz'd, methinks; and lose my way
Among the thorns and dangers of this world.
How easy dost thou take all England up!
From forth this morsel of dead royalty,
The life, the right, and truth of all this realm
Is fled to heaven; and England now is left
To tug and scamble, and to part by the teeth
The unowed interest of proud-swelling state.
Now, for the bare-pick'd bone of majesty,
Doth dogged war bristle his angry crest,
And snarleth in the gentle eyes of peace:
Now powers from home, and discontents at home,
Meet in one line; and vast confusion waits
(As doth a raven on a sick-fallen beast,)
The eminent decay of wrested pomp.

[Erit.

K. John. Is this Ascension-day? Did not the prophet

Say, that, before Ascension-day at noon,
My crown I should give off? Even so I have:
I did suppose, it should be on constraint;
But, heaven be thank'd, it is but voluntary.

Enter the Bastard.

Bast. All Kent bath yielded; nothing there holds out,

Now happy he, whose cloak and cincture can
Hold out this tempest. Bear away that child,
And follow me with speed; I'll to the king:
A thousand businesses are brief in hand,
And heaven itself doth frown upon the land.

[Exeuni.

But Dover castle: London hath receiv'd,
Like a kind host, the Dauphin and his powers:
but are gone

Your nobles will not hear you,
To offer service to your enemy;
And wild amazement hurries up and down
The little number of your doubtful friends.

K. John. Would not my lords return to me

again, After they heard young Arthur was alive?

Bast. They found him dead, and cast into the streets;

An empty casket, where the jewel of life

By some damn'd hand was robb'd and ta en away. K. John. That villain Hubert told me he did live.

Bast. So, on my soul, he did, for aught he knew. But wherefore do you droop? why look you sad? Be great in act, as you have been in thought; Let not the world see fear, and sad distrust, Govern the motion of a kingly eye: Be stirring as the time; be fire with fire; Threaten the threat'ner, and outface the brow Of bragging horror: so shall inferior eyes, That borrow their behaviours from the great, Grow great by your example, and put on The dauntless spirit of resolution. Away; and glister like the god of war, When he intendeth to become the field: Show boldness and aspiring confidence. What, shall they seek the lion in his den, And fright him there? and make him tremble there?

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Insinuation, parley, and base truce,
To arms invasive? shall a beardless boy,
A cocker'd silken wanton brave our fields,
And flesh his spirit in a warlike soil,
Mocking the air with colours idly spread,

find no check? Let us, my liege, to arms:
Pernance, the cardinal cannot make your peace;
Or if he do, let it at least be said,
They saw we had a purpose of defence.

K. John. Have thou the ordering of this present time.

SCENE II.

Bast. Away then, with good courage; yet, I know, Our party may well meet a prouder foc. [Exeunt. A Plain, near St. Edmund's-Bury. Enter in arms, LEWIS, SALISBURY, MELUN, PEMBROKE, BIGOT, and Soldiers.

Lew. My lord Melun, let this be copied out,
And keep it safe for our remembrance:
Return the precedent to these lords again;
That, having our fair order written down,
Both they, and we, perusing o'er these notes,
May know wherefore we took the sacrament,
And keep our faiths firm and inviolable.

Sal. Upon our sides it never shall be broken. And, noble dauphin, albeit we swear A voluntary zeal, and unurg'd faith, To your proceedings; yet, believe me, prince, I am not glad that such a sore of time Should seek a plaster by contemn'd revolt, And heal the inveterate canker of one wound, By making many; O, it grieves my soul, That I must draw this metal from my side To be a widow-maker; O, and there, Where honourable rescue, and defence, Cries out upon the name of Salisbury : But such is the infection of the time, That, for the health and physick of our right, We cannot deal but with the very hand Of stern injustice and confused wrong. And is't not pity, O my grieved friends! That we, the sons and children of this isle, Were born to see so sad an hour as this: Wherein we step after a stranger march Upon her gentle bosom, and fill up Her enemies' ranks, (I must withdraw and weep Upon the spot of this enforced cause,) To grace the gentry of a land remote, And follow unacquainted colours here? What, here?. O nation, that thou could'st remove! That Neptune's arms, who clippeth thee about, Would bear thee from the knowledge of thyself, And grapple thee unto a pagan shore ; Where these two Christian armies might combine The blood of malice in a vein of league, And not to spend it so unneighbourly!

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Lew. A noble temper dost thou show in this; And great affections, wrestling in thy bosom, Do make an earthquake of nobility.

O, what a noble combat hast thou fought,
Between compulsion, and a brave respect!
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,
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 deep
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.

Pand. 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.

Lew. Your grace shall pardon me, I will not back;

I am too high-born to be propertied,
To be a secondary at controul,
Or useful serving-man, and instrument,
To any sovereign state throughout the world.
Your breath first kindled the dead coal of wars
Between this chástis'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 enterprize into my heart;
And come you now to tell me, John hath made
His peace with Rome? What is that peace to me?
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 Rome?
Am I Rome's slave? What penny hath Rome borne,
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?
And shall I now give o'er the yielded set?
No, on my soul, it never shall be said.

Pand. You look but on the outside of this work.
Lew. Outside or inside, I will not return
Till my attempt so much be glorified
As to my ample hope was promised
Before I drew this gallant head of war,
And cull'd these fiery spirits from the world,
To cutlook conquest, and to win renown
Even in the jaws of danger and of death.
[Trumpet sounds.
What lusty trumpet thus doth summon us?

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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.

Pan. The dauphin is too wilful opposite, And will not temporize with my entreaties; He flatly says, he'll not lay down his arms.

Bust. By all the blood that ever fury breath'd,

king;

For thus his royalty doth speak in me.
He is prepar'd; and reason too, he should:
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
door.

To cudgel you, and make you take the hatch;
To dive, like buckets, in concealed wells;
To crouch in litter of your stable planks;
To lie, like pawns, lock'd up in chests
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 his 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 aiery towers,

The youth says well:- Now hear our English Lies heavy on me; O, my heart is sick!

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and

To souse annoyance that comes near his nest.
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 needs to lances, and their gentle hearts
To fierce and bloody inclination.

Lew. There end thy brave, and turn thy face in
peace;
We grant, thou canst outscold us: fare thee well;
We hold our time too precious to be spent
With such a brabbler.

Pand.

Give me leave to speak.

Bast. No, I will speak. Lew. We will attend to neither:Strike up the drums; and let the tongue of war Plead for our interest, and our being here. Bast. Indeed, your drums, being beaten, will cry

out;

Lew. Strike up our drums, to find this danger out. Bast. And thou shalt find it, Dauphin, do not doubt. [Exeunt.

And so shall you, being beaten : Do but start
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 hand
(Not trusting to this halting legate here,
Whom he hath us'd rather for sport than need,)
Is warlike John; and in his forehead sits
A bare-ribb'd death, whose office is this day
To feast upon whole thousands of the French.

The same. A Field of Battle. Alarums. Enter KING JOHN and HUBert.

K. John. How goes the day with us? O, tell me, Hubert.

Hub. Badly, I fear: How fares your majesty? K. John. This fever, that hath troubled me so long,

SCENE III.

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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.

Sal.

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,
By cutting off your heads: Thus hath he sworn,
And I with him, and many more with me,
Upon the altar at Saint Edmund's-Bury ;
Even on that altar, where we swore to you
Dear amity and everlasting love.

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?

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