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up your hairs.

K. John. Do not I know, thou would'st ? And be a carrion monster like thyself: Good Hubert, Hubert, Hubert, throw thine eye Come, grin on mo; and I will think thou smil'et, On yon young boy: I'll tell thee what, my friend, And buss thee as thy wife! Misery's love, He is a very serpent in my way;

0, come to me! And, wberesoe'er this foot of mine doth tread, K. Phi.

O fair affliction, peace. He lies bef

me : Dost tho understand me? Const. No, no, I will not, having breath to cry :Thou art his keeper.

0, that my tongue were in the thunder's mouth! Hub.

And I will keep him so, Then with a passion would I shake the world; That he shall not offend your majesty.

And rouse from sleep that fell anatomy,
K. John. Death.

Which cannot hear a lady's feeble voice,
My lord ?

Which scorns a modern invocation.
K. John.
A grave.

Pand. Lady, you utter madness, and not sorrow.
He shall not live.

Const. Thou art not holy to belie me so; K. John.

Enough. I am not mad: this hair I tear is mine ; I could be merry now : Hubert, I love thee; My name is Constance: I was Geffrey's wife; Well, I'll not say what I intend for thee;

Young Arthur is my son, and he is losi : Remember.- Madam, fare you well :

I am not mad:-1 would to heaven, I were ! I'll send those powers o'er to your majesty.

For then, 'tis like I should forget myself: Eli. My blessing go with thee !

O, if I could, what grief should I forget! K. John,

For England, cousin : Preach some philosophy to make me mad, Hubert shall be your man, attend on you

And thou shalt be canoniz'd, cardinal: With all true duty.—On toward Calais, ho ! For, being not mad, but sensible of grief,

[Ereunt. My reasonable part produces reason

How I may be deliver'd of these woes,
SCENE IV. The same. The French King's Tent. And teaches me to kill or hang myself:

Enter King Philip, Lewis, PanduLPH, and If I were mad, I should forget my son;

Or madly think, a babe of clouts were he:
K. Phi. So, by a roaring tempest on the flood,

I am noi mad; too well, too well I feel

The different plague of each calamity.
A whole armadoof convicted' sail
Is scatter'd and disjoin'd from fellowship.

K. Phi. Bind up those tresses; 0, what lovel

note Pand. Courage and comfort! all shall yet go in the fair multitude of those her hairs ! well.

Where but by chance a silver drop hath fallen, K. Phi. What can go well, when we have run so ill ?

Even to that drop ten thousand wiry friends Are we not beaten ? Is not Angiers lost?

Do glew themselves in sociable grief; Arthur ta’en prisoner? divers dear friends slain ?

Like true, inseparable, faithful loves,

Suicking together in calamity.
And bloody England into England gone,
O'erbearing interruption, spite of France ?

Const. To England, if you will."
K. Pha.

Lew. What he hath won, that hath he fortified:
So hot a speed with such advice dispos’d,

Const. Yes, that I will; and wherefore will I do

it? Such temperate order in so fierce a cause, Doth want example ; Who hath read, or heard,

I tore them from their bonds; and cried aloud,

o that these hands could so redeem my son of any kindred action like to this? K. Phi. Well could I bear that England had

As they have given these hairs their liberty ! this praise,

But now I envy at their liberty, So we could find some pattern of our shame.

And will again commit them to their bonds,

Because my poor child is a prisoner.-

And, father cardinal, I have heard you say,
Look, who comes here! a grave unto a soul; That we shall see and know our friends in heaven.
Holding the eternal spirit, against her will, If that be true, I shall see my boy again;
In the vile prison of afflicted breath :-

For, since the birth of Cain, the first male child, I pr’ythee, lady, go away with me.

To him that did but yesterday suspire,' *Const. Ío, now! now see the issue of your There was not such a gracious'' crcature born, peace!

But now will canker sorrow eat my bud,
K, Phi. Patience, good lady! comfort, gentle and chase the native beauty from his cheek,

And he will look as hollow as a ghost;
Const. No, I defy all counsel, all redress, As dim and meagre as an ague's fit;
But that which ends all counsel, true redress, And so he'll die; and, rising so again,
Death, death :-0) amiable lovely death!

When I shall meet him in the court of heaven Thou odoriferous stench! sound rottenness! I shall not know him : therefore never, never Arise forth from the couch of lasting night, Must I behold my pretty Arthur more. Thou hate and terror to prosperity,

Pand. You hold too heinous a respect of grief. And I will kiss thy detestable bones;

Const. He talks to me, that never had a son.!? And put my eyeballs in thy vaulty brows;

K. Phi. You are as fond of grief, as of your child. And ring these fingers with thy household worms; Const. Grief fills the room up of my absent And stop this gap of breath' with fulsome dust,

child, 13 1 King John, after he had taken Arthur prisoner, sent 5'- the vile prison of afflicted breath' is the body : him to the town of Falaise, in Normandy, nnder the care the same vile prison in which the breath is confined. of Hubert, his chamberlain, from whence he was after- 6 To defy formerly signified to refuse, to reject. wards removed to Rouen, and delivered to the custody *I do defy thy commiseration.'-Romeo and Juliet. of Robert de Veypont. Here he was secretly put to 7 i. e, this mouth.

8 j. e. common. death. "This is one of those scenes (says Stecvens) to 9 Probably Constance in despair means to a postro. which may be promised a lasting commendation. Art phize the absent King John :- Take my son to Eng could add little to its perfection ; no change in dramatic land if you will.' taste can injure it; and time itself can subtract nothing 10 To suspire Shakspeare uses for to breathe. from its beaulies.'

II Gracious is used by Shakspeare often in the sense 2 Armado is a fleet of war; the word is adopted from of beautiful, comely, graceful. Florio, in his Italian the Spanish, and the recent defeat of the Spanish arma. Dictionary, shows that this was no uncommon signifido had made it familiar.

cation; he explains gratioso, graceful, gracious, also 3. Convicted is vanquished, overcome. To convince comely, fine, ivell-faroured, gentle. and convict were synonymous.

12 To ihe same purpose Macduff observes > 4 A fierce cause is a cause conducted with precipita

• He has no children. tion. Fierce wretchedness in Timon of Athens is has. 13 . Perfruitur lachrymis, et amat pro conjuge luctum.' ty, sudden misery.

Lucan, Lix,

Lies in his bed, walks up and down with me; To check his reign, but they will cherish it :
Puts on his preity looks, repeats his words, No natural exhalation in the sky,
Remembers me of all his gracious parts,

No scape of nature, no distemper'd day,
Stuffs out his vacant garments with his form; No common wind, no customed event,
Then, have I reason to be fond of grief.

But they will pluck away his natural cause, Fare you well: had you such a loss as I,

And call them meteors, prodigies, and signs, I could give better comfort than you do.- Abortives, presages, and tongues of heaven, I will not keep this form upon my head,

Plainly denouncing vengeance upon John. [Tearing off her head-dress. Lew. May be, he will not touch young Arthur's When there is such disorder in my wit.

life, O lord, my boy, my Arthur, my fair son!

But hold himself safe in his prisonment. My life, my joy, my food, my all the world!

Pand. O, sir, when he shall hear of your approach, My widow-comfort, and my sorrow's cure! [Erit. If that young Arthur bo not gone already, K. Phi. I fear some outrage, and I'll follow her. Even at that news he dies : and then the hearts

(Exit. Of all his people shall revolt from him, Lew. There's nothing in this world can make me And kiss the lips of unacquainted change ;,

And pick strong matter of revolt, and wrath, Life is asidious as a twice-told tale,

Out of the bloody fingers' ends of John, Vexing the dull ear of a drowsy man;

Methinks, I see this hurlys all on foot ; And bitter shame hath spoild the sweet world's? And, 0, what better matter breeds for you, taste,

Than I have nam'd !—The bastard Faulconbridge That it yields nought, but shame, and bitterness. Is now in England, ransacking the church,

Pand. Before the curing of a strong disease, Offending charity : If but a dozen French
Even in the instant of repair and health,

Were there in arms, they would be as a calle 'The fit is strongest; evils, that take leave, To train ten thousand English to their side; On their departure niost of all show evil :

Or, as a little snow,' tumbled about, What have you lost by losing of this day?

Anon becomes a mountain. O noble Dauphin, Lew. All days of glory, joy, and happiness. Go with me to the king : 'Tis wonderful, Pand. If you had won it, certainly, you had. What may be wrought out of their discontent: No, no: when fortune means to men most good, Now that their souls are topfull of offence, She looks upon them with a threatening eye. For England go ; I will whet on the king. 'Tis strange, to think how much King John hath lost Lew. Strong reasons make strong actions : Let In this which he accounts so clearly won:

us go; Are not you griev'd, that Arthur is his prisoner ? If you say, ay, the king will not say, no. (Exeunt

Lew. As heartily, as he is glad he hath him.
Pand. Your mind is all as youthful as your blood.

Now hear me speak, with a prophetic spirit;
For even the breath of what I mean to speak

SCENE I. Northampton.' A Room in the Castle. Shall blow each dust, each straw, each little rub,

Enter HUBERT and two Attendants. Out of the path which shall directly lead

Hub. Heat me these irons hot: and, look thou Thy foot to England's throne ; and, therefore, mark.

stand John hath seiz'd Arthur; and it cannot be, Within the arras :10 when I strike my foot That, whiles warın life plays in that infant's veins, Upon the bosom of the ground, rush forth : The misplac'd John should entertain an hour, And bind the boy, which you shall find with me, One minute, nay, one quiet breath of rest : Fast to the chair: be heedful : hence, and watch. A sceptre, snatch'd with an unruly hand,

1 Attendant. I hope, your warrant will bear out Must be as boisterously maintain'd as gain'd:

the deed. And he, that stands upon a slippery place, Makes nice of no vile hold to stay him up:

Hub. Uncleanly scruples! Fear not you : look to't.

(Exeunt Attendants. That John may stand, then Arthur needs'must fall; Young lad, come forth; I have to say with you. So be it, for it cannot be but so.

Enter ARTHUR, Lew. But what shall I gain by young Arthur's fall ?

Arth. Good morrow, Hubert.

Hub. Pand. You, in the right of Lady Blanch your

Good morrow, little princa. wife,

Arth. As little prince (having so great a title May then make all the claim that Arthur did.

To be more prince,) as may be.-You are sad. Lew. And lose it, life and all, as Arthur did.

Hub. Indeed, I have been merrier. Pand. How green are you, and fresh in this old Methinks nobody should be sad but 1:


Mercy on nie! world! John lays you plots; the time conspires

with you: Young gentlemen would be as sad as night,

Yet, I remember, when I was in France,
For he, that steeps his safety in true blood,
Shall find but bloody safety, and untrue.

Only for wantonness." By my christendom,"
This act, so evilly born, shall cool the hearts are sometimes caught ; one being placed for the purpose
Of all his people, and freeze up their zeal;

of drawing others to the net by his note or call. That none so small advantage shall step forth, 7 Bacon, in his History of Henry VII. speaking of

Simnel's march, observes that their snowball did not 1. For when thou art angry, all our days are gone, gather as it went. we bring our years to an end, as it were a tale that is 8 The first folio reads strange; the second folio told.' Psalm xc.

strong. 2 The old copy reads word's. The alteration was 9 There is no circumstance, either in the original made by Pope. "Malone thinks that it is unnecessary; play or in this of Shakspeare, to point out the particu. and that by the sweet word, life is meant. Steevens lar castle in which Arthur is supposed to be confined. prefers Pope's emendation, which is countenanced by The castle of Northampton has been mentioned merely Hamlet's

because, in the first act, King John seems to have been How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable in that town. It has already been stated that Arthur Seem to me all the uses of this world!

was in fact confined at Falaise, and afterwards at Rouen, 3 John Jays you plots.' A similar phrase occurs in where he was put to death. the First Part of King Henry VI. :

10 Tapestry. "He writes me here."

11 This is a satirical glance at the fashionable affec 4 The old copy reads scope. The emendation is tation of his time by Shakspeare: which Lyly also ridiPope's. Shakspeare finely calls a monstrous birth an cules in his Midas : Now every base companion, be. escape of nalure, as if it were produced while she was ing in his muble-fubles, says he is melancholy.' Again : busy elsewhere, or intent upon some other thing. Melancholy is the crest of courtiers, and now every 5 Hurly is tunult.

base companion says he is melancholy.' 6 The image is taken from the manner in which birds 19 i. e. by my baptism. The use of this word for



So I were out of prison, and kept sheep,

And I will sit as quiet as a lamb: I should be as merry as the day is long;

I will not stir, nor wince, nor speak a word ; And so I would be here, but that I doubt

Nor look upon the iron angerly : My uncle practises more harm to me :

Thrust but' these men away, and I'll forgive you, He is afraid of me, and I of him:

Whatever torment you do put me to. Is it my fault that I was Geffrey's son ?

Hub. Go, stand within ; let me alone with him. No, indeed, is't not; And I would to heaven,

Attendant. I am best pleas'd to be from such a I were your son, so you would love me, Hubert.


(Eseunt Attendants, Hub. If I talk to him, with his innocent prate

Arth. Alas! I then have chid away my friend; He will awake my merry, which lies dead: He hath a stern look, but a gentle heart ;Therefore I will be sudden, and despatch. (Aside. Let him come back, that his compassion may

Arth. Are you sick, Hubert ? you look pale to-day: Give life to yours. In soo:h, I would you were a little sick';


Come, boy, prepare yourself, That I might sit all night, and watch with you:

Arth. Is there no remedy? I warrant, I love you more than you do me.


None, but to lose your eyes. Hub. His words do take possession of my bo- Arth. O heaven !-that there were but a mote in

yours, Read here, young Arthur. [Showing a paper.] A grain, a dust, a gnat, a wand'ring hair,

How now, foolish rheur ! (Aside. Any annoyance in that precious sense! Turning dispiteous torture out of door!

Then, feeling what small things are boist'rous there, I must be brief, lest resolution drop

Your vile intent must needs seem horrible. Out at mine eyes, in tender womanish tears.- Hub. Is this your promise? go to, hold your Can you not read it? is it not fair writ?

tongue. Arth. Too fairly, Hubert, for so foul effect : Arth. Hubert, the iterance of a brace of tongues Must you with hot irons burn out both mine eyes? Must needs want pleading for a pair of eyes; Hub. Young boy, I must.

Let me not hold my tongue ; let me not, Hubert ! Arth. And will you ?

Or, Hubert, if you will, cut out my tongue, a Hub.

And I will. So I may keep mine eyes: 0, spare mine eyes, Arth. Have you the heart ? When your head did Though to no use, bui still to look on you! but ake,

Lo, by my troth, the instrument is cold, I knit my handkerchief about your brows

And would not harm me. (The best I had, a princess wrought it me,)


I can heat it, boy. And I did never ask it you again :

Arth. No, in good sooth; the fire is dead with And with my hand at midnight held your head;

grief, And, like the watchful minutes to the hour, Being create for comfort, to be us'd Still and anon cheer'd up the heavy time;

In undeserv'd extremes : 3 See else yoursell; Saying, What lack you ? and, Where lies your There is no malice in this burning coal; grief?

The breath of heaven hath blown his spirit out, Or, What good love may I perform for you? And strew'd repentant ashes on his head, Many a poor man's son would have lain still, Hub. But with my breath I can revive it, boy. And 'ne'er have spoke a loving word to you ; Arth. And if you do, you will but make it blush, But you at your sick service had a prince. And glow with shame of your proceedings, Hubert : Nay, you may think my love was crafty love, Nay, ir, perchance, will sparkle in your eyes; And call it cunning; Do, an if you will:

And, like a dog that is compellid to fight, If heaven be pleas'd that you must use me ill, Snatch at his master that doth tarre* him on. Why, then you must.-Will you put out mine eyes ? All things, that you should use to do me wrong, These eyes, that never did, nor never shall, Deny their office : only you do lack So much as frown on you?'

Thai mercy, which fierce fire, and iron, extends, Hub.

I have sworn to do it; Creatures of note for mercy-lacking uses. And with hot irons must I burn them out.

Hub. Well, see to live ; I will not touch thine eyes Arth. Ah, none, but in this iron age, would do it! For all the treasure that thine uncle owes :: The iron of itself, though heat' red-hot,

Yet am I sworn, and I did purpose, boy, Approaching near these eyes, would drink my tears, With this same very iron to burn them out. And quench his fiery indignation

Arth, 0, now you look like Hubert ! all this while Even in the matter of mine innocence:

You were disguis'd. Nay, after that, consume away in rust,


Peace: no more. Adieu: But for containing fire to harm mine eye.

Your uncle must not know but you are dead : Are you more stubborn-hard than hammer'd iron? I'll fill these dogged spies with false reports. An if an angel should have come to me,

And, pretty child, sleep doubtless, and secure, And told me, Hubert should put out mine eyes, Thai Hubert, for the wealth of all the world, I would not have believ'd him; no tongue, but Hu- Will not offend thee. bert's.


O heaven! I thank you, Hubert. Hub. Come forth. [Stamps. Hub. Silence ; no more : Go closely in with me;

(Exeunta Re-enter Attendants, with Cords, Irons, foc.

Much danger do I undergo for thee. Do as I bid you do.

SCENE II. The same. A Room of Slate in the Arth. O, save me, Hubert, save me; my eyes

Palace. Enter King John, crowned; Pemare out,


SALISBURY, and other Lords. The King Even with the fierce looks of these bloody men. takes his State.

Hub. Give me the iron I say, and bind him here. K. John. Here once again we sit, once again Arth. Alas! what need you be so boist'rous

crown'd, rough?

And look'd upon, I hope, with cheerful eyes. I will not struggle, I will stand stone-still. For heaven's sake, Hubert, let me not be bound ! 1 The participle heat, though obsolete, was in Nay, hear me, Hubert! drive these men away, use in Shakspeare's time. “He commanded that they

should heat the furnace one seven times more than it christening or baptism is not peculiar to Shakspeare ; it was wont to be heat.:-Daniel, iii. 19. was common in his time. Hearne has published a 2 'This is according to nature,' says Johnson. We Prone from a MS. of Henry the Seventh's time, in the imagine no evil so great as that which is near us.' glossary to Robert of Gloucester in a nole on the word 3.The fire being created, not to hurt, but lo comfort, mide winter, by which it appears that it was the ancient is dead with grief for finding itself used in acts of cruorthography. The childer ryzt schape & chrystyn.elly, which, being innocent, I have not deserved.' dome. It is also used by Lyly, Fanshaw, Harington, 4 i. e. stimulate, set him on. and Fairfaxe.

6 i. e. secretly privately.

5 Owns.

* Pem. This once again, but that your highness | Than whereupon our weal, on you depending, pleas'd,

Counts it your weal, he have his liberty.
Was once superfluous :' you were crown'd before, K. John. Let it be so; I do commit his youth
And that high royalty was ne'er pluck'd off ;

The faiths of men ne'er stained with revolt;
Fresh expectation troubled not the land,

To your direction.--Hubert, what news with you?

Pem. This is the man should do the bloody deed; With any long'd-for change, or better state.

He show'd his warrant to a friend of mine :
Sal. Therefore, to be possess’d with double pomp, The image of a wicked heinous fault
To guarda a title that was rich before,
To gild refined gold, to paint the lily,

Lives in his eye, that close aspect of his
To throw a perfume on the violet,

Does show the mood of a much troubled breast ; To smooth the ice, or add another hue

And I do fearfully believe, 'tis done,

What we so fear'd he had a charge to do.
Unto the rainbow, or with taper-light
To seek the beauteous eye of heaven to garnish,

Sal. The colour of the king doth come and

go, Is wasteful, and ridiculous excess.

Between his purpose and his conscience," Pem. But that your royal pleasure must be done, His passion is so ripe it needs must break.

Like heralds 'twixt two dreadful battles set: This act is as an ancient tale new told ;)

Pem. And when it breaks, I fear, will issue thence And, in the last repeating, troublesome,

The foul corruption of a sweet child's death. Being urged at a time unseasonable.

K. John. We cannot hold mortality's strong Sal. In this, the antique and well-noted faco

hand :Of plain old form is much disfigured : And, like a shifted wind unto a sail,

Good lords, although my will to give is living, It makes the course of thoughts to setch about ;

The suit which you demand is gone and dead :

He tells us, Arthur is deceas'd to-night.
Startles and frights consideration;
Makes sound opinion sick, and truth suspected,

Sal. Indeed, we feard his sickness was past cure.

Pem. Indeed, we heard how near his death he was, For putting on so new a fashion'd robe. Pem. When workmen strive to do better than Before the child himself felt he was sick: well,

This must be answer'd, either here, or hence. They do confound their skill in covetousness :* K. John. Why do you bend such solemn brows And, oftentimos, excusing of a fault, Doth make the fault the worse by the excuse ;

Think you, I bear the shears of destiny? As patches, set upon a little breach,

Have I commandment on the pulse of life? Discredit more in hiding of the fault,s

Sal. It is apparent foul-play; and 'tis shame,

That Than did the fault before it was so patch'd.

greatness should so grossly offer it : We breath'd our counsel : but it pleas'd your high- and find the inheritance of this poor child, Sal. To this effect, before you were new-crown'd, So thrive it in your game! and so farewell


Pem. Stay yet, Lord Salisbury; I'll go with thee, To overbear it; and we are all well pleas'd;

His little kingdom of a forced grave.

That blood, which ow'd12 the breadth of all this isle, Since all and every part of what we would, Doth make a stand at what your highness will.

Three foot of it doth hold; Bad world the while ! K. John. Some reasons of this double coronation This must not be thus borne : this will break out I have possess'd you with, and think them strong;

To all our sorrows, and ere long, I doubt.

(Ereunt Lords. And more, more strong (when lesser is my fear,)

K. John. They burn in indignation ; I repent; I shall indue you with: Mean time, but ask

There is no sure foundation set on blood;
What you would have reform’d, that is not well;

No certain life achiev'd by others' death -
And well shall you perceive, how willingly
I will both hear and grant you your requests.

Enter a Messenger.
Pem. Then I (as one thai am the tongue of these, A fearful eye thou hast; Where is that blood,
To sound" the purposes of all their hearts,) That I have seen inhabit in those cheeks?
Both for myself and them (but, chief of all, So foul a sky clears not without a storm:
Your safety, for the which myself and them Pour down thy weather:- How goes all in France ?
Bend their best studies), heartily request

Mess. From France to England.13_Never such The enfranchisement of Arthur; whose restraint

a power Doth move the murmuring lips of discontent For any foreign preparation, To break into this dangerous argument,

Was levied in the body of a land ! If, what in rest you have, in right you hold, The copy of your speed is learn'd by them; Why then your fears (which, as they say, attend For, when you should be told they do prepare, The steps of wrong), should move you to mew up The tidings come that they are all arrivd. Your tender kinsman, and to choke his days

K. John. 0, where hath our intelligence been With barbarous ignorance, and deny his youth

drunk'? The rich advantage of good exercise ? 10

Where hath it slept ?14 Where is my mother's care? That the time's enemies may not have this That such an army could be drawn in France, To grace occasions, let it be our suit,

And she not hear of it? That you have bid us ask his liberty;


My liege, her ear Which for our goods we do no further ask, Is stopp'd with dust; the first of April, died



1 i. e. this one time more, was one time more than 10 In the middle ages, the whole education of princes enough. It should be remembered that King John was and noble youths consisted in martial exercises, &c. now crowned for the fourth time.

Mental improvement might have been had in a prison 2 To guard is to ornament.

as well as any where else. 3 Shakspeare has here repeated an idea which he 11 The purpose of the king, lo which Salisbury alludes, had firs put into the mouth of the Dauphin:

is that of putting Arthur to death, which he considers as Life is as tedious as a twice-told tale,

not yet accomplished, and therefore supposes that there Vexing the dull ear of a drowsy man.'

might be still a conflict in the king's mind4 I. e. not by their avarice, but in an eager desire of * Between his purpose and his conscience.' excelling.

12 i. e."ound the breadth of all this isle.' The two 5 Fault means blemish.

last variorum editions erroneously read breath for 6 Since the whole and each particular part of our breadth,' which is found in the old copy. wishes, &c.

13 The king asks how all goes in France; the mes. 7 To declare, to publish the purposes of all, &c senger catches the word goes, and answers, that what. S Releasement.

ever is in France goes now into England. 9 The construction of this passage is . If you have a 14 So in Macbeth :-good title to what you have now in rest (i. e. quiel), why

Was the hope drunk Then is it that your fears should move you ? &c.

Wherein you drest yourself? hath it slept since ?!


Your noble mother ; And, as I hear, my lord, K. John, Spoke like a spriteful noblo gentle
The Lady Constance in a frenzy died

Three days before: but this from rumour's tongue Go after him; for he, perhaps, shall need
I idly heard ; if true, or false, I know not.

Some messenger betwixt me and the peers;
K. John. Withhold thy speed, dreadful occasion! And be thou he.
0, make a league with me, till I have pleas'd


With all my heart, my liege. My discontented peers !—What! mother dead ?

(Exit. How wildly then walks my estate in France !1 - K. John. My mother dead! Under whose conduct came those powers of France,

Re-enter HUBERT.
That thou for truth giv'st out, are landed here?
Mess. Under the Dauphin.

Hub. My lord, they say, five moons were seen Enter the Bastard and Peter of POMFRET.

to-night :

Four fixed; and the fifth did whirl about K. John.

Thou hast made me giddy The other four, in wondrous motion, With these ill tidings.-Now, what says the world

K. John. Five moons ? To your proceedings ? do not seek to stuff

Hub. Old men, and beldams, in the streets My head with more ill news, for it is full. Bast. But if you be aseard to hear the worst,

Do prophesy upon it dangerously: Then let the worst, unheard, fall on your head.

Young Arthur's death is common in their mouths; K. John. Bear with me, cousin ; for I was And whisper one another in the earį

And when they talk of him, they shake their heads, amaz'da

And he, that speaks, doth gripe the hearer's wrist ; Under the tide ; but now I breathe again

Whilst he, that hears, makes fearful action, Aloft the food; and can give audience

With wrinkled brows, with nods, with rolling eyes, To any tongue, speak it of what it will. Bast. How I have sped among the clergymen,

I saw a smith stand with his hammer thus,

The whilst his iron did on the anvil cool, The sums I have collected shall express.

With open mouth swallowing a tailor's news ; But, as I travelled hither through the land,

Who, with his shears and measure in his hand, I find the people strangely fantasied;

Standing on slippers (which his nimble haste Possess'd with rumours, full of idle dreams;

Had falsely thrust upon contrary feet), Not knowing what they fear, but full of fear': Told of a thousand warlike French, And here's a prophet, that I brought with me

That were embattailed and rank'd in Kent: From forth the streets of Pomfret, whom I found

Another lean unwash'd artificer With many hundreds treading on his heels;

Cuts off his tale, and talks of Arthur's death. To whom he sung, in rude harsh sounding rhymes, K. John. Why seek'st thou to possess me with That, ere the next Ascension-day at noon,

these fears? Your highness should deliver up your crown. K. John. Thou idle dreamer, wherefore didst Thy hand hath murder'd him; I had a mighty cause

Why urgest thou so oft young Arthur's death? thou so? Peter. Foreknowing that the truth will fall out so.

To wish him dead, but thou hadst none to kill him.

Hub. Had none, my lord! why, did you not proK. John. Hubert, away with him ; imprison him;

voke me? And on that day at noon, whereon, he says,

K. John. It is the curse of kings to be attended I shall yield up my crown, let him be hang'd: Deliver him to safety, 4 and return,

By slaves, that take their humours for a warrant

To break within the bloody house of life :
For I must use thee.-O my gentle cousin,

And, on the winking of authority,
(Eri HUBERT, with Peter. To understand a law; to know the meaning
Hear'st thou the news abroad, who are arriv'd ?
Bast. The French, my lord; men's mouths are More upon humour than advis'd respect."

of dangerous majesty, when, perchance, it frowns full of it: Besides, I met Lord Bigot, and Lord Salisbury

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

K. John, 0, when the last account 'twixt heaven (With eyes as red as new-enkindled fire),

and earth And others more, going to seek the grave

Is to be ade, then shall this hand and seal or Arthur, who, they say, is kill'd to-night

Witness against us to damnation!
On your suggestion.
K. John.
Gentle kinsman, go,

How oft the sight of means to do ill deeds,

Make deeds ill done! Hadest not thou been by, And thrust thyself into their companies : I have a way to win their loves again;

A fellow by the hand of nature mark'd,

Quoted,' and sign'd, to do a deed of shame, Bring them before me.

This murder had not come into my mind :

I will seek them out.
K. John. Nay, but make haste ; the better foot Finding thee fit for bloody villany,

But, taking note of thy abhorr'd aspect,
0, let me have no subject enemies,

Apt, liable, to be employ'd in danger, When adverse foreigners affright my towns

I faintly broke with thee of Arthur's death ;

And thou, to be endeared to a king,
With dreadful pomp of stout invasion!-

Made it no conscience to destroy a prince.
Be Mercury, set feathers to thy heels;
And fly, like thought, from them to me again.

Hub. My lord,

I. John. Hadst thou but shook thy head, or made Bast. The spirit of the time shall teach me speed.

a pause,

(Exit. 1 i. e. how ill my affairs go in France.

Each other's words, and yet no creature speaks ; 2 Astonied, stunned, confounded, are the ancient

A longue-tieu scar hath made a midnight hour, synonymes of amazed, obstupesco.

And speeches sleep through all the waking region.' 3 This man was a hermit in great repute with the com- knowledge of so many learned commentators, is now,

6 This passage, which called forth the antiquarian fallen out as he prophesied, the poor fellow was inhu: from the return of the fashion of right and left shoes, manly dragged at horses' tails through the streets of become intelligible without a note.

7 Deliberate consideration. Warham, and, together with his son, who appears to have been even more innocent than his father, hanged

8 To quote is to note or (bark. afterwards upon a gibbet. Holinshed, in anno 1213.

9 There are many touches of nature in this conference

of John with Hubert. A man engaged in wickedness Speed says that Peter the hermit was suborned by the pope's legate, the French king, and the barons for this would keep the profit to himself, and tranfer the guilt

to his accomplice. These reproaches vented against purpose. 4'1. e. to safe custody.

Hubert are not words of art or policy, but the erupuons 5 This may be compared with a spirited passage in desirous of discharging its misery on another. This

of a mind swelling with consciousness of a crime, and Edward III. Capel's Prolusions, p. 75 : Our men, with open mouths and staring eyes,

account of the timidity of guilt is drawn, ab ipsis reces. Look on each other, as they did attend.

sibus mentis, from the intimate knowledge of mankiud ; particularly that line in which he says, that to have bid

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