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Another Part of the same.
Enter SALISBURY, PEMBROKE, Bigot, and Others.
Sal. I did not think the king so stor’d with friends.
Pem. Up once again ; put spirit in the French; If they miscarry, we miscarry too.
Sal. That misbegotten devil, Faulconbridge, In spite of spite, alone upholds the day. Pem. They say, king John, sore sick, hath left the
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.
Wounded to death.
Mel. Fly, noble English, you are bought and sold;2
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.
2 A proverb intimating treachery. VOL. Iv.
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
Resolved from his figure 'gainst the fire ?4
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?
I say again, if Lewis do win the day,
He is forsworn, if e'er those
Behold another day break in the east :
But even this night, - whose black contagious breath
Already smokes about the burning crest
Of the old, feeble, and day-wearied sun,-
Even this ill night, your breathing shall expire;
Paying the fine of rated treachery,
Even with a treacherous fine of all your lives,
If Lewis by your assistance win the day.
Commend me to one Hubert, with your king;
The love of him,--and this respect besides,
For that my grandsire was an Englishman,-
Awakes conscience to confess all this.
In lieus whereof, I pray you, bear me hence
From forth the noise and rumour of the field;
Where I may think the remnant of my thoughts
In peace, and part this body and my soul
With contemplation and devout desires.
Sal. We do believe thee,-And beshrews
But I do love the favour and the form
4 In allusion to the images made by witches.
6 Ill betide.
Of this most fair occasion, by the which
We will untread the steps of damned flight;
And, like a bated and retired flood,
Leaving our rankness and irregular course,
Stoop low within those bounds we have o'erlook’d,
And calmly run on in obedience,
Even to our ocean, to our great king John.-
My arm shall give thee help to bear thee hence;
For I do see the cruel pangs of death
Right in thine eye.--Away, my friends! New flight;
And happy newness,7 that intends old right.
[Exeunt, leading off Melun.
Lew. The sun of heaven, methought, was loath to
But stay'd, and made the western welkin 8 blush,
When the English measur’d backward their own
In faint retire: 0, bravely came we off,
When with a volley of our needless shot,
After such bloody toil, we bid good night;
And wound our tatter'd colours clearly up,
Last in the field, and almost lords of it!
Enter a Messenger.
Mess. Where is my prince, the Dauphin?
Mess. The count Melun is slain; the English lords,
By his persuasion, are again fallen off:
And your supply, which you have wish'd so long,
Are cast away, and sunk, on Goodwin sands.
Lew. Ah, foul shrewd news !-Beshrew thy very
I did not think to be so sad to-night,
As this hath made me.-Who was he, that said,
King John did fly, an hour or two before
The stumbling night did part our weary powers ?
Mess. Whoever spoke it, it is true, my lord.
Lew. Well; keep good quarter, 9 and good care to-
night; The day shall not be up so soon as I, To try the fair adventure of to-morrow. [Exeunt.
An open Place in the Neighbourhood of Swinstead
Enter the Bastard and HUBERT, meeting.
Hub. Who's there? speak, ho! speak quickly, or
Bast. A friend:-What art thou?
Of the part of England.
Bast. Whither dost thou go?
9 In your posts or stations.
Hub. What's that to thee? Why may not I demand Of thine affairs, as well as thou of mine?
Bast. Hubert, I think.
Thou hast a perfect thought: I will
upon all hazards, well believe Thou art my friend, that know'st my tongue so
well : Who art thou ? Bast.
Who thou wilt: an if thou please, Thou may'st befriend me so much, as to think I come one way of the Plantagenets. Hub. Unkind remembrance! thou, and eyeless
night, Have done me shame:--Brave soldier, pardon me, That any accent, breaking from thy tongue, Should ’scape the true acquaintance of mine ear. Bast. Come, come; sans' compliment, what news
abroad? Hub. Why, here walk I, in the black brow of
night, To find you out. Bast.
Brief, then ; and what's the news ? Hub. O, my sweet sir, news fitting to the night, Black, fearful, comfortless, and horrible.
Bast. Show me the very wound of this ill news; I am no woman, I'll not swoon at it.
Hub. The king, I fear, is poison’d by a monk:
I left him almost speechless, and broke out
To acquaint you with this evil ; that you might
The better arm you to the sudden time,
Than if you had at leisure known of this