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That you have bid ws ask his liberty ;
Which for our good we do no further ask,
Than whereupon our weal, on you depending,
Counts it your weal that he have liberty.

Enter Hubert.
1. John. Let it be 1o ; I do commit his youth
To your direction. Hubert, what news with you ?

Pimb. This is the man, should do the bloody deed
He thew'd his warrant to a friend of mine.
The image of a wicked heinous fault
Lives in his eye ; that close aspect of his
Does shew the mood of a much-troubled breaft.
And I do fearfully believe 'tis done,
What we lo fear'd he had a charge to do.

Sal. The colour of the King doth come and go..
Between his purpose and his conscience,
Like heralds 'twixt t:vo dreadful battles fent : (22)
His passion is so ripe, it needs must break.

Pemb. And when it breaks, I fear, will issue thenceThe foul corruption of a sweet child's death.

K. John We cannot hold mortality's Arong hand. Good Lords, although my will to give is, living, The suit which you demand is gone, and dead. He tells us, Aribur is deceased to-night.

Sal. Indeed, we fear’d, his fickness was past cure.

Pemb. Indeed, we heard how near his death he was, Before the child himself felt he was fick This must be answer’d, either here, or hence.

K.John. Why do you tend foch folemn brows on me?
Think you, I bear thọ Thears of deftiny?
Hare I commandment on the pulse of life?

Sal. It is apparent foul-play, and 'tis thame
That greatness should fo grolly offer it :.
So thrive it in your game, and so farewel !

(22) Like beralds, 'twixt two dreadful battles set;] But heralds. are not planted, I prelume, in the mist betwixt iwo lines of battle; cho' they, and trumpets, are often sent over from party to party, to propose terms, demand a parley, c. I have therefore ventur'd to read, ent.


Pemb. Stay yet, Lord Salisbury, I'll go with thee, And find th’inheritance of this poor child, His little kingdom of a forced grave. That blood which own’d the breadth of all this ifle, Three foot of it doth hold; bad world the while ! This must not be thus borne ; this will break out To all our forrows, and ere long, I doubt. [Exeunt:

Enter a Messenger. K. Jobm They burn in indignation ; I repent. There is no sure foundation set on blood; No certain life atchiev'd by others death [ Afiske. A fearfuleye thou haft'; where is that blood, [To the Mufen. That I have seen inhabit in those cheeks? So foul a sky clears not without a storm ; Pour down thy weather : how goes all in France ?

Mes. From France to England never such a power, For any foreign preparation, Was levy'd in the body of a land.. Rhe copy of your speed is learn'd by them :For when you should be told, they do prepare, The ridings come, that they are all arriv'd.

K.John. Oh, where hath our intelligence been drunk: Where hath it flept ? where is my mother's care? That such an army should be drawn in France, And the not hear of it?

Me, My Liege, her ear. is ficpt with duft : the first of April, dy'd Your noble mother; and as I hear, my Lord, The Lady Confiance in a frenzy dy'd Three days before : but this from rumour's tongue lidly heard; if true or fallë, I know not.

K. John. With-hold thy speed, dreadful occasion ! O make a league with me, till. I have pleas'd My discontented peers.

Wbat! mother dead? How wildly then walks my, eftate in France ? Under whose conduct came those powers of France, That, thou for truth giv'st out, are landed here ? Mef. Under the Dauphir.


Enter Faulcenbridge, and Peter of Pomfret.
K. John. Thou hast made me giddy
Wich these ill tidings. Now, what says the world
To your proceedings? Do not feek to stuff
My head with more ill news, for it is full.

Faulc. But if you be afraid to hear the worst,
Then let the worst unheard fall on your head.

k. John. Bear with me, cousin ; for I was amaz’d
Under the tide ; but now I breathe again
Aloft the food, and can give audience
To any tongue, speak it of what it will.

Fauls. How I have sped among the clergymen,
The sums I have collected Mall express.
But as I travelld hither through the land,
I find the people strangely fantasied ;
Poffeft with rumours, full of idle dreams ;.
Not knowing what they fear, but full of fear.
And here's a prophet that I brought with me
From forth the streets of Pomfret, whom I found
With many hundreds treading on his heels :
To whom he sung in rude harth-founding rhimes,
That, ere the next Afcenfion-day at noon,
Your Highness should deliver up your crown.

K John. Thou idle dreamer, wherefore didit thou foj
Peter. Fore-knowing, that the truth will fall out so.

K. 7.hn. Hubert, away with him, imprison him,
And on that day at noon, whereon he lays
I shall yield up my crown, let him be hang'd.
Deliver him to safety, and return,
For I must use thee.-O.my gentle cousin,

Exit Hubert, with Peter, Hear'st thou the news abroad, who are arriv'd ?

Faulc. The French, my Lord; mens mouths are full of it; Befides, I met Lord Biyot and Lord Sailbury, , With eyes as red as new-enkindled fire, And others more, going to seek the grave Of Arthur, who, they say, is kill'd to-night On your suggestion,

K. John

K. John. Gentle kinsman, go
And thrust thyself into their company :
I have a way to win their loves again :
Bring them before me.

Faule. I will seek them out.

K. John. Nay, but make hafte; the better foot before O, let me have no subject enemies, When adverse foreigners affright my towns With dreadful pomp of fout invasion, Be Mercury, set feathers to thy heels ; And fly, like thought, from ihem to me again..

Faul. The spirit of the time shallteach me speed. (Exit.

K. John. Spoke like a sprightful noble gentleman. Go after him ; for he, perhaps, shall need Some messenger betwixt me and the peers i And be thou he.

Mef. With all my heart, my Liege. [Exit. K. John, My mother dead!

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 whilper one another in the ear. And he, that speaks, doth gripe the hearer's wrist, Whilft he, that hears, makes fearful action With wrinkled brows, with nods, with rolling eye6. I saw a smith stand with his hammer, thus, Thę whilst his iron did on the anvil cool, With open mouth swallowing a taylor's news ; Who with his shears and measure in his hand, Standing on flippers, which his nimble hafte Had falsely thruit upon contrary feet, Told of a many thousand warlike French,


That were embattled and rank'd in Kent.
Another lean, unwash'd artificer
Cuts off his tale, and talks of Arthur's death.

K.John. Why seek’lt thou to possess me with these fears?
Why urgest thou so oft young Arthur's death?
Thy hand hath murder'a him: I had a cause
To with him dead, but thou had'ít 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 Naves that take their humours for a warrant,
To break into the bloody house of life:
And, on the winking of authority,
To understand a law, to know the meaning
Of dang'rous Majesty; when, perchance, it frowns
More upon humour, than advis'd respect.

Hub. Here is your hand and seal, for what I did.

K.Jo.Oh, when the last account 'twixt heav'n andearth
Is to be made, then shall this hand and seal
Witness against us to damnation.
How oft the fight of means, to do ill deeds,
Makes deeds ill done ? for had it not thou been by,
A fellow by the hand of nature mark’d,
Quoted, and fign'd to do a deed of shame,
This murder had not come into mind.
But taking note of thy abhorr'd aspect,
Finding thee fit for bloody villainy,
Apt, liable to be employ'd in danger,
1 faintly broke with thee of Arthur's death,
And thou, to be endeared to a King,
Mad'st it no conscience to de&roy a Prince.

Hub. My Lord

K. Joh. Hadft thoa but shook thy head, or made a paufe,
When I spake darkly what I purposed :
Or turn'd an eye of doubt upon my face,
Or bid me tell my tale in express wordss
Deep shame had itruck me dumb, made me break off,
And those thy fears might have wrought fears in me.
But thou didit understand me by my signs,
And didft in ligns again parley with fin;



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