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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 aspéct, 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 unbruis'd, We will bear home that lusty blood again, Which here we came to spont against your town, And leave your children, wives, and you, in peace. But if you fondly pass our proffer'd offer, 'Tis not the rounduret of your old-fac'd 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 challeng'd 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


1 Cit. That can we not: but he that proves the

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 king?

And, if not that, I bring you witnesses,

Twice fifteen thousand hearts of England's breed,-
Bust. Bastards, aud else.

K. John. To verify our title with their lives.

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K. Phi. As many, and as well-born bloods as


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 swing'd the dragon, and e'er since,

Sits on his horseback at mine hostess' door,

Teach us some fence!-Sirrah, were I at home,
At your den, sirrah [To Austria.], with your lion-


I'd set an ox head to your lion's hide,

And make a monster of you.


Peace; no more.

Bast. O, tremble; for you hear the lion roar. K. John. Up higher to the plain; where we'll set forth,

In best appointment, all our regiments.

Bast. Speed then, to take advantage of the field. K. Phi. It shall be so ;-[To Lewis.] and at the

other hill

Command the rest to stand.-God, and our right!



The same.

Alarums and Excursions; then a Retreat. Enter a French Herald, with trumpets, to the gates.

F. Her. You men of Angiers, open wide your

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 lye scatter'd on the bleeding ground:
Many a widow's husband groveling 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 Augiers, ring your

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'd 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 hands

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

Cit. Heralds, from off our towers we miglit 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

Strength match'd with strength, and power confronted power:

Both are alike; and both alike we like.

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.

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 sav'd 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

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,

Judged, determined.


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 meu,
In undetermin'd differences of kings.-
Why stand these royal fronts amazed thus?
Cry, havock, 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. Whose party do the townsmen yet admit?

K. Phi. Speak, citizens, for England; who's your king?

1 Cit. The king of England, when we know the


K. Phi. Kuow him in us, that here hold up his

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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, resolv'd,

Be by some certain king purg'd and depos'd.
Bast. By heaven, these scroylest of Angiers flout
you, kings;

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 rul'd 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

* Potentates.

* Mutineers.

+ Scabby fellows.

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