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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 Ceur-de-lion's death,
The rather, that you give his offspring life,
Shadowiog 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-fac'd shore,
Whose foot spurns back the ocean's roaring tides,
And coops from other lands her islanders,
*Even till that England, hedg’d 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 pot think of home, but follow arms.
Const. · 0! 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 swords In such a just and charitable war.
K. Phi. Well then, to work. Our cannon shall be bent 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 upadvis'd 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 repent each drop of blood,
That hot rash haste so indirectly shed.
K. Phr. A wonder, lady! - lo, upon thy wish,
Our messenger, Chatillon, is arriv'd. -
What England says, say briefly, gentle lord;
We coldly pause for thee: Chatillon, speak.
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 tíme
To land his legions all as soon as I.
His marches are expedient to this town;
His forces strong, bis soldiers confident.
With bim along is come the mother-queen,
An Até stirring him to blood and strife:
With her her niece, the lady Blanch of Spain;
With them a bastard of the king's deceas'd,
And all th' 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. [Drums heard within.
The interruption of their churlish drums
Cuts off more circumstance: they are at hand,
To parley, or to fight; therefore, prepare.
K. Phi. How much uolook'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 prepar'd.
Enter King JOHN, ELINOR, BLANCH, the Bastard, PEMBROKE
K. John. Peace be to France; if France in peace permit
Our just and lineal entrance to our own;
If not, bleed France, and peace ascend to heaven;
Whiles we, God's wrathful agent, do correct
Their proud contempt that beats 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 Eogland 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 commission, France, To draw my answer from thy articles ?
K. Phi. From that superbal Judge, that stirs good thoughts
In any breast of strong authority,
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 usurpiog son.
Eli. Out, insolent! thy bastard shall be king,
That thou may’st 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 devił 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.
Eli. There 's a good mother, boy, that blots thy father.
Const. There's a good grandam, boy, that would blot thee.
Hear the crier.
What the devil art ihou ? Bast. One that will play the devil, Sir, with you, An 'a may catch your hide and you alone. You are the hare of whom the proverb goes, Whose valour plucks dead liops by the beard. I'll smoke your skin-coat, an I catch you right: Sirrah, look to 't; i' faith, I will, i' faith.
Blanch. 0! 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 upon an ass.
But, ass, I'll take that burden from your back,
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.
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.
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 po! 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 brib'd 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;