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But ah, I will not :-yet I love thee well;
And, by my troth, I think thou lov'st me well.

Hub. So well, that what you bid me undertake, Though that my death were adjunct to my act, By heaven, I would do it.

K. John. Do not I know thou wouldst? Good Hubert, Hubert, Hubert, throw thine eye On yon young boy. I'll tell thee what, my friend, He is a very serpent in my way; And wheresoe'er this foot of mine doth tread, He lies before me. Dost thou understand me? Thou art his keeper.

Hub. And I'll keep him so, That he shall not offend your majesty.

K. John. Death.
Hub. My lord ?
K. John. A grave.
Hub. He shall not live.

K. John. Enough.
I could be merry now. Hubert, I love thee :
Well, I 'll not say what I intend for thee :
Remember.—Madam, fare you well:
I 'll send those powers o'er to your majesty.

Eli. My blessing go with thee !

K. John. For England, cousin, go : Hubert shall be your man; attend on you With all true duty.-On toward Calais, ho !

[Exeunt.

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Are we not beaten : is not Angiers lost :
Arthur ta'en prisoner: divers dear friends slain :
And bloody England into England gone,
O'erbearing interruption, spite of France ?

Lew. What he hath won, that hath he fortified.
So hot a speed with such advice disposed,
Such temperate order in so fierce a cause,
Doth want example. Who hath read or heard
Of any kindred action like to this?
K. Phi. Well could I bear that England had

this praise, So we could find some pattern of our shame.

6

Enter CONSTANCE.
Look who comes here! a grave unto a soul ;
Holding the eternal spirit, against her will,
In the vile prison of afflicted breath.-
I pr'y thee, lady, go away with me.

Const. Lo now; now see the issue of your peace!
K. Phi. Patience, good lady: comfort, gentle

Constance ! Const. No, I defy all counsel, all redress, But that which ends all counsel, true redress : Death, death !-O amiable lovely death! Thou odoriferous stench! sound rottenness! Arise forth from the couch of lasting night, Thou hate and terror to prosperity, And I will kiss thy détestable bones, And put my eyeballs in thy vaulty brows, And ring these fingers with thy household worms, And stop this gap of breath with fulsome dust, And be a carrion monster like thyself ! Come, grin on me; and I will think thou smil'st, And buss thee as thy wife! Misery's love, O come to me!

K. Phi. O fair affliction, peace.

Const. No, no, I will not, having breath to cry. O that my tongue were in the thunder's mouth! Then with a passion would I shake the world, And rouse from sleep that fell anatomy Which cannot hear a lady's feeble voice, Which scorns a modern invocation.

Pand. Lady, you utter madness, and not sorrow.

Const. Thou art not holy to belie me so. I am not mad : this hair I tear is mine ; My name is Constance ; I was Geffrey's wife;

Young Arthur is my son, and he is lost.
I am not mad : I would to heaven I were !
For then 't is like I should forget myself:
O, if I could, what grief should I forget! -
Preach some philosophy to make me mad,
And thou shalt be canonised, cardinal :
For, being not mad, but sensible of grief,
My reasonable part produces reason
How I may be delivered of these woes,
And teaches me to kill or hang myself.
If I were mad I should forget my son,
Or madly think a babe of clouts were he.
I am not mad: too well, too well I feel
The different plague of each calamity!
K. Phi. Bind up those tresses.- what love

I note
In the fair multitude of those her hairs !
Where but by chance a silver drop hath fallen,
Even to that drop ten thousand wiry friends
Do glew themselves in sociable grief :
Like true, inseparable, faithful loves,
Sticking together in calamity.
Const. To England, if you

will. K. Phi. Bind up your hairs. Const. Yes, that I will : and wherefore will I

do it?
I tore them from their bonds, and cried aloud,
“O that these hands could so redeem my son
As they have given these hairs their liberty!"
But now I envy at their liberty,
And will again commit them to their bonds,
Because my poor child is a prisoner.-
And, father cardinal, I have heard you say
That we shall see and know our friends in heaven:
If that be true, I shall see my boy again ;
For since the birth of Cain, the first male child,
To him that did but yesterday suspire,
There was not such a gracious creature born.
But now will canker sorrow eat my bud,
And chase the native beauty from his cheek,
And he will look as hollow as a ghost,
As dim and meagre as an ague's fit;
And so he 'll die ; and, rising so again,
When I shall meet him in the court of heaven
I shall not know him: therefore never, never,
Must I behold my pretty Arthur more.

Pand. You hold too heinous a respect of grief.
Const. He talks to me, that never had a son!
K. Phi. You are as fond of grief as of your

child.
Const. Grief fills the room up of my absent child;
Lies in his bed, walks up and down with me,
Puts on his pretty looks, repeats his words,
Remembers me of all his gracious parts,
Stuffs out his vacant garments with his form:
Then have I reason to be fond of grief.
Fare you well : had you such a loss as I,
I could give better comfort than you do.-

I will not keep this form upon my head,

[T'earing off her head-dress. When there is such disorder in

my

wit. O lord ! my boy, my Arthur, my fair son! My life, my joy, my food, my all the world ! My widow-comfort, and my sorrows'cure! [Exit. K. Phi. I fear some outrage, and I 'll follow her.

[Exit. Lew. There's nothing in this world can make

me joy : Life is as tedious as a twice-told tale, Vexing the dull ear of a drowsy man; And bitter shame hath spoiled the sweet world's

taste, That it yields nought but shame and bitterness.

Pand. Before the curing of a strong disease, Even in the instant of repair and health, The fit is strongest : evils that take leave, On their departure most of all shew evil. What have you lost by losing of this day?

Lew. All days of glory, joy, and happiness.

Pand. If you had won it, certainly you had. No, no: when fortune means to men most good, She looks upon them with a threatening eye. 'Tis strange to think how much King John hath lost In this which he accounts so clearly won! Are not you grieved that Arthur is his prisoner?

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 Shall blow each dust, each straw, each little rub, Out of the path which shall directly lead Thy foot to England's throne: and therefore mark. John hath seized Arthur; and it cannot be That, whiles warm life plays in that infant's veins, The misplaced John should entertain an hour, One minute, nay, one quiet breath of rest. A sceptre, snatched with an unruly hand, Must be as boisterously maintained as gained: And he that stands upon a slippery place, Makes nice of no vile hold to stay him up. That John may stand, then, Arthur needs must fall: So be it, for it cannot be but so. Lew. But what shall I gain by young Arthur's

fall?

Pand. You, in the right of lady Blanch your

wife, May then make all the claim that Arthur did.

Lew. And lose it, life and all, as Arthur did.
Pand. How green you are, and fresh in this

old world! John lays you plots: the times conspire with

you: For he that steeps his safety in true blood, Shall find but bloody safety and untrue. This act, so evilly born, shall cool the hearts Of all his people, and freeze up their zeal ; That none so small advantage shall step forth, To check his reign, but they will cherish it : No natural exhalation in the sky, No scape of nature, no distempered day, No common wind, no customéd event, But they will pluck away his natural cause, And call them meteors, prodigies, and signs, Abortives, présages, and tongues of heaven, Plainly denouncing vengeance upon John. Lew. May be he will not touch young Arthur's

life, But hold himself safe in his prisonment.

Pand. O sir, when he shall hear of your approach, If that young

Arthur be not gone already, Even at that news he dies : and then the hearts Of all his people shall revolt from him, And kiss the lips of unacquainted change, And pick strong matter of revolt and wrath Out of the bloody fingers’-ends of John. Methinks I see this hurly all on foot : And 0, what better matter breeds for you Than I have named!—The bastard Falconbridge Is now in England, ransacking the church, Offending charity: if but a dozen French Were there in arms, they would be as a call To train ten thousand English to their side; Or as a little snow, tumbled about, Anon becomes a mountain. O noble Dauphin, Go with me to the King : 't is wonderful What may be wrought out of their discontent. Now that their souls are topful of offence, For England go: I will whet on the King.

Lew. Strong reasons make strong actions. Let

us go:

If you say ay, the King will not say no. [Exeunt.

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Scene I.-Northampton. A Room in the Castle.

Enter Hubert and two Attendants.
Hub. Heat me these irons hot; and look thou stand

Within the arras : when I strike my foot
Upon the bosom of the ground, rush forth,

Hub. If I talk to him, with his innocent prate And bind the boy which you shall find with me He will awake my mercy, which lies dead: Fast to the chair. Be heedful: hence, and watch. Therefore I will be sudden, and despatch. [Aside. 1st Att. I hope your warrant will bear out the Arth. Are you sick, Hubert ? you look pale deed.

to-day. Hub. Uncleanly scruples! Fear not you: look In sooth I would you were a little sick, to 't.

[Exeunt Attendants. That I might sit all night and watch with you : Young lad, come forth; I have to say with you. I warrant I love you more than you do me.

Hub. His words do take possession of my Enter ARTHUR.

bosom. Arth. Good morrow, Hubert.

Read here, young Arthur. [Shewing a paper. Hub. Good morrow, little prince.

How now, foolish rheum ! Arth. As little prince (having so great a title Turning dispiteous torture out of door ! To be more prince) as may be.—You are sad. I must be brief; lest resolution drop Hub. Indeed I have been merrier.

Out at mine eyes, in tender womanish tears.Arth. Mercy on me!

Can you not read it; is it not fair writ? Methinks nobody should be sad but I:

Arth. Too fairly, Hubert, for so foul effect ! Yet I remember, when I was in France,

Must you with hot irons burn out both mine eyes? Young gentlemen would be as sad as night, Hub. Young boy, I must. Only for wantonness. By my christendom,

Arth. And will you? So I were out of prison and kept sheep,

Hub.

And I will. I should be as merry as the day is long :

Arth. Have you the heart? When your head And so I would be here, but that I doubt

did but ache, My uncle practises more harm to me:

I knit my handkerchief about your brows He is afraid of me, and I of him.

(The best I had, a princess wrought it me), Is it my fault that I was Geffrey's son ?

And I did never ask it you again : No, indeed is 't not: and I would to heaven And with my hand at midnight held your head ; I were your son, so you would love me, Hubert. And, like the watchful minutes to the hour,

[Aside.

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