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Who, holding in disdain the German women,
For some dishoneft manners of their life,
Establisht then this law: to wit, no female
Should be inheritrix in Salike land :
Which Salike, as I said, 'twixt Elve and Sala,
Is at this day in Germany callid Meisen,
Thus doth it well appear, the Salike law
Was not devised for the realm of France ;
Nor did the French possess the Salike land,
Until four hundred one and twenty years
After defun&tion of King Pharamond,
(Idly suppos’d, the founder of this law ;)
Who died within the
of our redemption
Four hundred twenty fix; and Charles the great,
Subdu'd the Saxons, and did seat the French
Beyond the river Sala in the year
Eight hundred five. Besides, their writers say,
King Pepin, which deposed Childerick,
Did as heir general (being descended
Of Blithild, which was daughter to King Clothair)
Make claim and title to the Crown of France.
Hugh Capet also, who usurp'd the Crown
Of Charles the Duke of Lorain, sole heir male
Of the true line and stock of Charles the great,
To fine his title with some shews of truth,
(Though, in pure truth, it was corrupt and naught)
Convey'd himself as heir to th' lady Lingare,
Daughter to Charlemain, who was the fon
To Lewis th’Emperor, which was the son
Of Charles the great. Also King Lewis the ninth,
Who was fole heir to the usurper Capet,
Could not keep quiet in his conscience,
Wearing the Crown of France, 'till satisfy'd
That fair Queen Isabel, his grandmother,
Was lineal of tilady Ermeng ere,
Daughter to Charles the foresaid Duke of Lorain:
By the which match the line of Charles the great
Was re-united to the Crown of France.
So that, as clear as is the summer's fun,
King Pepin's title, and Hugh Capet's claim,
King Lewis his Possession, all appear
To hold in right and title of the female.
So do the Kings of France until this day:
Howbeit they would hold up this Salike law,
To bar your Highness claiming from the female;
And rather chuse to hide them in a net,
* Than amply to imbare their crooked titles,
Usurpt from you and your progenitors.
K. Henry. May I with right and conscience make this
Cant. The sin upon my head, dread Sovereign!
For in the book of Numbers it is writ,
When the son dies, let the inheritance
Descend unto the daughter. Gracious lord,
Stand for your own, unwind your bloody flag:
Look back into your mighty ancestors ;
Go, my dread lord, to your great grandfire's tomb,
From whom you claim; invoke his warlike spirit,
And your great uncle Edward the black Prince;
Who on the French ground play'd a Tragedy,
Making defeat on the full pow'r of France;
While his most mighty Father, on a hill,
Stood fnuiling, to behold his Lion's whelp
Forage in blood of French Nobility:
O noble English, that could entertain
With half their forces the full pow'r of France;
And let another half stand laughing by,
All out of work, and cold for action!
Ely. Awake remembrance of these valiant dead, And with your puillant arm renew their feats! You are their heir, you fit
their throne; The blood and courage, that renowned them, Runs in your veins; and my thrice puillant Liege
* Than openly to imnbrace-] The two old Folios read, Than amply to imbarre. Hence it appears we should, read, Than amply to imbare, i, e. lay open, make naked, expose to view.
Is in the very May-morn of his youth,
Ripe for exploits and mighty enterprises.
Exe. Your brother Kings and Monarchs of the
Do all expect that you should rouze yourself;
As did the former Lions of your blood.
Weft. * They know, your Race had cause, and
means, and might: So hath your Highness; never King of England Had Nobles richer, and more loyal Subjects; Whose hearts have left their bodies here in England, And lie pavilion'd in the field of France. + O let their bodies follow, my dear Liege, With blood and sword, and fire, to win your right.
Cant. In aid whereof, we of the Spiritualty
Will raise your Highness such a mighty sum,
As never did the Clergy at one time
Bring in to any of your ancestors.
K. Henry. We must not only arm t'invade the French,
But lay down our proportions to defend
Against the Scot, who will make road upon us
With all advantages.
Cant. They of those Marches, gracious Sovereign, Shall be a wall sufficient to defend Our Inland from the pilfering borderers. K. Henry. We do not niean the coursing snatchers
only, But fear the main intendment of the Scot, Who hath been still a giddy neighbour to us : * They know your Grace hath cause, and means, and might, So hath your Highness-] We should read,
-your Race had cause,which is carrying on the Sense of the concluding Words of Exeter.
As did the former Lions of your blood. mcaning Edward III, and the Black Prince. + 0, let their bodies follow, &c.] These two Lines, with a high, Inde-corum, are given to the Archibishop: but they belong to Wellmorland; and Canterbury begins, In aid whereef, we of the Spiritualty, &c.
For, you shall read, that my great grandfather
Ne'er went with his full forces into France,
But that the Scot on his unfurnisht kingdom
Came pouring, like a tide into a breach,
With ample and brim fulness of his force;
Galling the gleaned land with hot assays;
Girding with grievous siege castles and towns
That England, being empty of defence,
Hath shook, and trembled, at th’ill neighbourhood.
Cant. She hath been then more fear'd than harm'd,
For hear her best exampled by herself;
When all her chivalry hath been in France,
And she a mourning widow of her Nobles,
She hath herself not only well defended,
But taken and impounded as a stray
The King of Scots; whom she did send to France,
To fill King Edward's fame with prisoner Kings;
And make his chronicle as rich with prize,
As is the
bottom of the Sea With funken wreck and sumless treasuries.
Exe. But there's a saying very old and true,
If that you will France win, then with Scotland first begin.
For once the Eagle England being in prey,
To her unguarded neit the Weazel, Scot,
Comes sneaking, and so fucks her princely eggs ;
Playing the Mouse in absence of the Cat,
To taint, and havock, more than she can eat.
Ely. It follows then, the Cat must stay at home,
Yet that is but a scus”d necessity;
Since we have locks to safeguard necessaries,
* Ely. But there's a saying &c.] This Speech, which is dissuasive of the War with France, is absurdly given to one of the Churchmen in Confederacy to push the King upon it, as appears ty the first Scene of this Act. Besides, the Poet had here an eye to Hall, who gives this Observation to the Duke of Exeter. But the Editors have nade Ely and Exeter change Sides, and speak one another's Specches; for, this, which is given to Ely, is Exeter's ; and the following given to Exeter, is Ely's.
And pretty traps to catch the petty thieves.
While that the armed hand doth fight abroad,
Th' advised head defends itself at home:
For Government, though high, and low, and lower,
Put into parts, doth keep in one consent;
Congreeing in a full and natural close,
Cant. Therefore heaven doth divide
The state of man in divers functions,
Setting endeavour in continual motion;
To which is fixed, as an aim or butt,
Obedience; for fo work the honey Bees;
Creatures, that by a ruling nature teach
The art of order to a peopled kingdom.
They have a King, and officers of fort;
Where some, like magiftrates, corre&t at home :
Others like merchant-venturers, trade abroad;
Others, like soldiers, armed in their stings,
the summer's velvet buds: Which pillage they with merry march bring home To the tent-royal of their Emperor: Who, busied in his majesty, surveys The singing mason building roofs of gold; The civil citizens kneading up the honey; The poor mechanic porters crowding in Their heavy burdens at his narrow gate: The sad-ey'd Justice with his furly hum, Delivering o'er to executors pale The lazy yawning drone. I this in fer, That many things, having full reference To one consent, may work contrariously : As many arrows, loosed several ways, Come to one mark: as many ways meet in one town; As many
fresh streams meet in one salt sea;
lines close in the dial's center;
So may a thousand actions, 't once a-foot,
End in one purpose, and be all well born
Without defeat. Therefore to France, my Liege.