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As I by thine a wife: this is a match, And made between's by vows. found mine;
But how, is to be question'd; for I saw her, 139
As I thought, dead, and have in vain said many
A prayer upon her grave. I'll not seek far.--
For him, I partly know his mind,-to find thee
An honourable husband. Come, Camillo,
And take her by the hand; whose worth and
Is richly noted, and here justified
By us, a pair of kings. Let's from this place. Thou hast What! Look upon my brother: both your pardons,
That e'er I put between your holy looks
My ill suspicion. This is your son-in-law,
And son unto the king, who, heavens directing,
Is troth-plight to your daughter. Good Paulina,
Lead us from hence, where we may leisurely
Each one demand and answer to his part
Perform'd in this wide gap of time since first
We were dissever'd: hastily led away. Exeunt.
K. John. Now, say, Chatillon, what would
France with us?
SCENE.-Sometimes in England, and sometimes in France.
JAMES GURNEY, Servant to Lady Faulconbridge.
PETER of Pomfret, a Prophet.
PHILIP, King of France.
LEWIS, the Dauphin.
LYMOGES, Duke of Austria.
CARDINAL PANDULPH, the Pope's Legate.
MELUN, a French Lord.
In my behaviour, to the majesty,
The borrow'd majesty of England here.
Eli. A strange beginning; 'borrow'd majesty!'
K. John. Silence, good mother; hear the em-
CHATILLON, Ambassador from France.
QUEEN ELINOR, Mother to King John.
CONSTANCE, Mother to Arthur.
BLANCH of Spain, Niece to King John.
Chat. Philip of France, in right and true behalf
Of thy deceased brother Geffrey's son,
Arthur Plantagenet, lays most lawful claim
To this fair island and the territories,
To Ireland, Poietiers, Anjou, Touraine, Maine;
Desiring thee to lay aside the sword
Which sways usurpingly these several titles,
And put the same into young Arthur's hand,
Thy nephew and right royal sovereign.
K. John. What follows if we disallow of this?
Chat. The proud control of fierce and bloody war,
To enforce these rights so forcibly withheld.
Be thou as lightning in the eyes of France; Chat. Thus, after greeting, speaks the King of For ere thou canst report I will be there,
The thunder of my cannon shall be heard.
So hence! Be thou the trumpet of our wrath
And sullen presage of your own decay.
An honourable conduct let him have
Pembroke, look to 't. Farewell, Chatillon.
K. John. Here have we war for war, and blood for blood,
Controlment for controlment : so answer France. Chat. Then take my king's defiance from my mouth,
The furthest limit of my embassy.
K. John. Bear mine to him, and so depart in
Excunt CHATILLON and PEMBROKE. Eli. What now, my son! have I not ever said How that ambitious Constance would not cease Till she had kindled France and all the world
Upon the right and party of her son?
This might have been prevented and made whole
With very easy arguments of love,
Which now the manage of two kingdoms must
With fearful bloody issue arbitrate.
K. John. Our strong possession and our right
Eli. Your strong possession much more than your right,
Or else it must go wrong with you and me:
So much my conscience whispers in your ear,
Which none but heaven and you and I shall hear.
Enter a Sheriff, who whispers ESSEX.
Essex. My liege, here is the strangest contro-
Come from the country to be judg'd by you,
That c'er I heard: shall I produce the men?
K. John. Let them approach. Exit Sheriff.
Our abbeys and our priories shall pay
This expedition's charge.
Re-enter Sherif, with ROBERT FAULCONBRIDGE,
and PHILIP, his Bastard Brother.
What men are you?
Bast. Your faithful subject I, a gentleman 50
Born in Northamptonshire, and eldest son,
As I suppose, to Robert Faulconbridge,
A soldier, by the honour-giving hand
Of Coeur-de-Lion knighted in the field.
Between my father and my mother lay,
As I have heard my father speak himself,
When this same lusty gentleman was got.
Upon his death-bed he by will bequeath'd
His lands to me, and took it on his death
That this my mother's son was none of his;
And if he were, he came into the world
Full fourteen weeks before the course of time.
Then, good my liege, let me have what is mine,
My father's land, as was my father's will.
K. John. Sirrah, your brother is legitimate;
Your father's wife did after wedlock bear him,
And if she did play false, the fault was hers;
K. John. What art thou?
Rob. The son and heir to that same Faulcon- Which fault lies on the hazards of all husbands
That marry wives. Tell me, how if my brother,
Who, as you say, took pains to get this son, 121
Had of your father claim'd this son for his?
In sooth, good friend, your father might have
K. John. Is that the elder, and art thou the heir?
You came not of one mother then, it seems.
Bast. Most certain of one mother, mighty king;
That is well known: and, as I think, one father:
But for the certain knowledge of that truth
I put you o'er to heaven and to my mother:
Of that I doubt, as all men's children may.
Your tale must be how he employ'd my mother.
Rob. And once dispatch'd him in an embassy
To Germany, there with the emperor
To treat of high affairs touching that time.
The advantage of his absence took the king,
And in the meantime sojourn'd at my father's;
Where how he did prevail I shame to speak,
But truth is truth: large lengths of seas and
And were our father, and this son like him;
O! old Sir Robert, father, on my knee
I give heaven thanks I was not like to thee.
K. John. Why, what a madcap hath heaven
lent us here!
Eli. He hath a trick of Coeur-de-Lion's face;
The accent of his tongue affecteth him.
Do you not read some tokens of my son
In the large composition of this man?
K. John. Mine eye hath well examined his parts,
And finds them perfect Richard. Sirrah, speak:
What doth move you to claim your brother's land?
Bast. Because he hath a half-face, like my
With half that face would he have all my land;
A half-fac'd groat five hundred pound a year!
Rob. My gracious liege, when that my father
Your brother did employ my father much,-
Bast. Well, sir; by this you cannot get my land:
This calf bred from his cow from all the world;
In sooth he might then, if he were my brother's,
My brother might not claim him; nor your father,
Being none of his, refuse him: this concludes;
My mother's son did get your father's heir;
Your father's heir must have your father's land.
Rob. Shall then my father's will be of no force
To dispossess that child which is not his?
Bast. Of no more force to dispossess me, sir, Than was his will to get me, as I think.
Eli. Whether hadst thou rather be a Faulcon-
And like thy brother, to enjoy thy land,
Or the reputed son of Coeur-de-Lion,
Lord of thy presence and no land beside?
Bast. Madam, an if my brother had my shape,
And I had his, Sir Robert his, like him ;
And if my legs were two such riding-rods,
My arms such eel-skins stuff'd, my face so thin
in mine ear I durst not stick a rose
Lest men should say 'Look, where three-
And, to his shape, were heir to all this land,
Would I might never stir from off this place,
I'd give it every foot to have this face:
I would not be Sir Nob in any case.
Eli. I like thee well: wilt thou forsake thy
Bequeath thy land to him, and follow me?
I am a soldier and now bound to France.
Bast. Brother, take you my land, I'll take my
Your face hath got five hundred pound a year,
Yet sell your face for five pence and 'tis dear.
Madam, I'll follow you unto the death.
Eli. Nay, I would have you go before me thither.
Bast. Our country manners give our betters way.
K. John. What is thy name?
Bast. Philip, my liege, so is my name begun;
Philip, good old Sir Robert's wife's eldest son.
K. John. From henceforth bear his name whos?
form thou bearest :
Kneel thou down Philip, but arise more great;
Arise Sir Richard, and Plantagenet.
Bast. Brother by the mother's side, give me
My father gave me honour, yours gave land.
Now blessed be the hour, by night or day,
When I was got, Sir Robert was away!
Eli. The very spirit of Plantagenet !
I am thy grandam, Richard: call me so.
Bast. Madam, by chance but not by truth;
Something about, a little from the right,
In at the window, or else o'er the hatch:
Who dares not stir by day must walk by night,
And have is have, however men do catch.
Near or far off, well won is still well shot,
And I am I, howe'er I was begot.
K. John. Go, Faulconbridge: now hast thou
A landless knight makes thee a landed squire. Come, madam, and come, Richard: we must speed
For France, for France, for it is more than need.
Bast. Brother, adieu: good fortune come to
For thou wast got i' the way of honesty.
Exeunt all but Bastard.
A foot of honour better than I was,
But many a many foot of land the worse.
Well, now can I make any Joan a lady.
'Good den, Sir Richard!' 'God-a-mercy, fellow!'
And if his name be George, I'll call him Peter;
For new-made honour doth forget men's names:
'Tis too respective and too sociable
For your conversion. Now your traveller,
He and his toothpick at my worship's mess, 190 Legitimation, name, and all is gone.
And when my knightly stomach is suffic'd,
Why then I suck my teeth, and catechize
My picked man of countries: 'My dear sir,'
Thus, leaning on mine elbow, I begin,
'I shall beseech you'-that is question now;
And then comes answer like an absey-book:
'O sir,' says answer, 'at your best command;
At your employment; at your service, sir:'
'No, sir,' says question, 'I, sweet sir, at yours:
And so, ere answer knows what question would,
Saving in dialogue of compliment,
And talking of the Alps and Apennines,
The Pyrenean and the river Po,
It draws toward supper in conclusion so.
But this is worshipful society
And fits the mounting spirit like myself;
For he is but a bastard to the time,
That doth not smack of observation;
And so am I, whether I smack or no;
And not alone in habit and device,
Exterior form, outward accoutrement,
But from the inward motion to deliver
Sweet, sweet, sweet poison for the age's tooth:
Which, though I will not practise to deceive,
Yet, to avoid deceit, I mean to learn ;
For it shall strew the footsteps of my rising.
But who comes in such haste in riding-robes ?
What woman-post is this? hath she no husband
That will take pains to blow a horn before her?
Enter Lady FAULCONBRIDGE and JAMES
Lady F. Where is that slave, thy brother? where is he,
O me! it is my mother. How now, good lady!
What brings you here to court so hastily?
That holds in chase mine honour up and down?
Bast. My brother Robert? old Sir Robert's son ?
Colbrand the giant, that same mighty man?
Is it Sir Robert's son that you seek so?
Lady F. Sir Robert's son! Ay, thou unreverent
Sir Robert's son: why scorn'st thou at Sir Robert?
He is Sir Robert's son, and so art thou.
Bast. James Gurney, wilt thou give us leave
Gur. Good leave, good Philip.
Philip! sparrow! James,
There's toys abroad: anon I'll tell thee more.
Madam, I was not old Sir Robert's son :
Sir Robert might have eat his part in me
Upon Good-Friday and ne'er broke his fast.
Sir Robert could do well: marry, to confess,
Could he get me? Sir Robert could not do it:
We know his handiwork: therefore, good mother,
To whom am I beholding for these limbs ?
Sir Robert never holp to make this leg.
Lady F. Hast thou conspired with thy brother too,
That for thine own gain should'st defend mine honour?
What means this scorn, thou most untoward knave?
Bast. Knight, knight, good mother, Basiliscolike.
What! I am dubb'd; I have it on my shoulder.
But, mother, I am not Sir Robert's son ;
I have disclaim'd Sir Robert and my land;
Then, good my mother, let me know my father:
Some proper man, I hope; who was it, mother?
Lady F. Hast thou denied thyself a Faulcon-
Bast. As faithfully as I deny the devil.
Lady F. King Richard Coeur-de-Lion was thy
By long and vehement suit I was seduc'd
To make room for him in my husband's bed.
Heaven lay not my transgression to my charge!
Thou art the issue of my dear offence,
Which was so strongly urg'd past my defence.
Bast. Now, by this light, were I to get again,
Madam, I would not wish a better father.
Some sins do bear their privilege on earth,
And so doth yours; your fault was not your
Needs must you lay your heart at his dispose,
Subjected tribute to commanding love,
210 Against whose fury and unmatched force
The aweless lion could not wage the fight,
Nor keep his princely heart from Richard's
He that perforce robs lions of their hearts
May easily win a woman's. Ay, my mother,
With all my heart I thank thee for my father!
Who lives and dares but say thou didst not
When I was got, I'll send his soul to hell.
Come, lady, I will show thee to my kin;
And they shall say, when Richard me begot, If thou hadst said him nay, it had been sin : Who says it was, he lies: I say 'twas not.
The rather that you give his offspring life,
Shadowing 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
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 not think of home, but follow arms.
Const. O! take his mother's thanks, a widow's
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.
Chat. Then turn your forces from this paltry
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 time
His marches are expedient to this town,
To land his legions all as soon as I;
His forces strong, his soldiers confident.
With him along is come the mother-queen,
An Ate, 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 the 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 unlook'd for is this expedition!
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 beat his peace to
K. Phi. Peace be to England, if that war return
Till your strong hand shall help to give him 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 : 92
To make a more requital to your love.
Aust. The peace of heaven is theirs that lift This toil of ours should be a work of thine; their swords
In such a just and charitable war.
K. Phi. Well then, to work our cannon shall
But thou from loving England art so far
That thou hast under-wrought his lawful king,
Cut off the sequence of posterity,
Out-faced 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
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'erinasterest?
K. John. From whom hast thou this great com-
Const. Stay for an answer to your embassy, Lest unadvis'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. Phi. A wonder, lady! lo, upon thy wish, 50
Our messenger, Chatillon, is arriv'd!
What England says, say briefly, gentle lord;
We coldly pause for thee; Chatillon, speak.
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 Bas-
tard, Lords, and Forces.
To draw my answer from thy articles?
K. Phi. From that superial judge, that stirs
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 devil 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 thou?
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 lions 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. O! 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' shows 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
With this abundance of superfluous breath? King,-Lewis, determine what we shall do straight.
Lew. Women and fools, break off your confer
Infortunate in nothing but in thee:
Thy sins are visited in this poor child;
The canon of the law is laid on him,
Being but the second generation
Removed from thy sin-conceiving womb.
K. John. Bedlam, have done.
I have but this to say,
That he is not only plagued for her sin,
But God hath made her sin and her the plague
On this removed issue, plagu'd for her,
And with her plague, her sin; his injury
Her injury, the beadle to her sin,
All punish'd in the person of this child.
And all for her. A plague upon her!
Eli. Thou unadvised scold, I can produce
A will that bars the title of thy son.
Const. Ay, who doubts that? a will! a wicked
A woman's will; a canker'd grandam's will!
K. Phi. Peace, lady! pause, or be more
It beseems this presence to cry aim
To these ill-tuned repetitions.
Some trumpet summon hither to the walls
These men of Angiers: let us hear them speak
Whose title they admit, Arthur's or John's.
Trumpets sound. Enter Citizens upon the walls.
First Cit. Who is it that hath warn'd us to the
K. Phi. 'Tis France, for England. K. John. England, for itself. You men of Angiers, and my loving subjects,-K. Phi. You loving men of Angiers, Arthur's subjects,
Our trumpet call'd you to this gentle parle,— K. John. For our advantage; therefore hear us first.
These flags of France, that are advanced here
Before the eye and prospect of your town,
Have hither march'd to your endamagement :
The cannons have their bowels full of wrath, 210
And ready mounted are they to spit forth
Their iron indignation 'gainst your walls:
All preparation for a bloody siege
And merciless proceeding by these French
Confronts your city's eyes, your winking gates;
And but for our approach those sleeping stones,
That as a waist doth girdle you about,
By the compulsion of their ordinance
By this time from their fixed beds of lime
Had been dishabited, and wide havoc made 220
For bloody power to rush upon your peace.
But on the sight of us your lawful king,