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To be the realm of France, and Pbaramond
The founder of this law and female bar.
Yet their own authors faithfully affirm,
That the land Salike lies in Germany,
Between the floods of Sala and of Elve:
Where Charles the great, having subdu'd the Saxons,
There left behind and settled certain French:
Who, holding in disdain the German women,
For some dishonest manners of their life,
Establisht then this law ; to wit, no female
Should be inheritrix in Salıke land:
Which Salike, as I said, 'cwixt 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 defunction of King Pharamond,
(Idly suppos’d, the founder of this law ;)
Who died within the Year of our redemption
Four hundred twenty fix; and Charles the great
Subdu'd the Saxons, and did feat the French
Beyond the river Sala in the year
Eight hundred five. Besides, their writers say,
King Pepin, which deposed Childerick,
as heir general (being defcended
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, fole 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 son
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 the lady Ermengere,
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 sun,
King Pepin's title, and Hugh Capet's claim,
King Lewis his Satisfaction, all appear (4)
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 froin the female ;
And rather chuse to hide them in a net,
Than amply to imbare their crooked titles, (5)
Usurpt from you and your progenitors.
K. Henry. May I with right and conscience make this
Cant. The sin upon my head, dread Soveraign!
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 grandsire's tomb,
(4) King Lewis his Satisfaction,] Thus all the authentick Copies ; Mr. Pope in the room of it, either out of a particular Delicacy of Ear, or religious Adherence to the Chronicles, has substituted, Poteffion. But I believe the other to have been the Author's Word, of Choice : he seems to be briefly recapitulating his own Terms, and he had told us just above, that Lewis IX. could not wear the Crown with a quiet Conscience,
till satisfied That fair Queen Ifabel, his Grandmother, &c. (5) Than openly imbrace) This is Mr. Pope's Reading, and not any ways authoriz’d that I can find. But where is the Antithesis betwixt hide in the preceding Line, and imbrace in this ? The two old Folio's read, Than amply to imbarre But here is a slight Corruption in the Spelling, by the superfluous Reduplication of a Letter. We certainly must either read (as Mr. Warburton advisd me,) Than amply to imbare(or, as I had suspected, unbare ;) i. e. lay open, make naked, display to View. I am surprizd, Mr. Pope did not start this Conjecture, as Mr. Rowe has led the way to it in his Edition, who reads ; Than amply to make bare their crooked Titles.
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 smiling, 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 puissant arm renew their feats !
You are their heir, you sit upon their throne ;
The blood, and courage, that renowned them,
Runs in your veins ; and my thrice puissant Liege
Is in the very May-morn of his youth,
Ripe for exploits and mighty enterprises.
Exe. Your brother Kings and Monarchs of the earth
Do all' expect that you should rouze your felf;
As did the former Lions of your blood.
West. They know, your Grace hath cause, and means,
and might, (6)
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.
Cant. 0, let their bodies follow, my dear Liege,
With blood, and sword, and fire, to win your right:
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
(6) They know your Grace hath cause, and means and might ; So hath your highness, never King of England Had Nobles richer, -] Thus has this Speech hitherto been most stupidly pointed, without any regard to common Sense. As I have regulated it, we see the Poet's Drift, and come at an easy and natural Reasoning.
Scot, who will make road upon us
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 mean the coursing snatchers only,
But fear the main intendment of the Scot,
Who hath been still a giddy neighbour to us :
you shall read, that my great grandfather
Never went with his forces into France,
But that the Scot on his unfurnisht kingdom
Came pouring, like a ride 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,
my Liege ;
For hear her but exampled by her self ;
When all her chivalry hath been in France,
And she a mourning widow of her Nobles,
She hath her self 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 praise,
As is the ouzy bottom of the sea
With sunken wrack and sumless treasuries.
Ely. 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 nest 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. (7)
(7) To tear and havock more than she can eat.] 'Tis not much the Quality of the Mouse to tear the Food it comes at, but to run over and deňle it. The old 4to reads, Spoile ; and the two first folio's, tame : from which last corrupted Word, I think, I have retriev'd the Poet's genuine Reading, taint.
Exe. It follows then, the Cat must stay at home,
Yet that is but a 'scus'd necessity ; (8)
Since we have locks to safeguard necessaries,
And pretty traps to catch the petty thieves.
While that the armed hand doth fight abroad,
Th’advised head defends it self at home :
For Government, though high, and low, and lower, (9)
Put into parts, doth keep in one consent ;
Congreeing in a full and natural clofe,
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 so work the honey Bees
Creatures, that by a rule in nature teach
The art of order to a peopled kingdom.
They have a King, and officers of fort
Where some, like magistrates, correct at home :
Others, like merchants, venture trade abroad :
Others, like soldiers, armed in their stings,
Make boot upon 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 ;
porters crowding in Their heavy burthens at his narrow gate :
(8) Yet that is but a curs'd Neceffity :] So the old 4to. The folio's read crus'd: Neither of the Words convey any tolerable Idea ; but give us a counter-reasoning, and not at all pertinent. 'Tis Exeter's business to thew, there is no real Neceflity for staying at home : he muft therefore mean, that tho there be a seeming Neceflity, yet it is one that may be well excus’d, and got over.
Mr. Warburton. (9) For Government, though high, and low, and lower,] The Foundation and Expression of this Thought seem to be borrow'd from Cicero, de Republica, lib. 2. Sic ex fummis, & mediis, & infimis interjectis Ordinibus, ut fonis, moderatam ratione Civitatem, Consensu diffimiliorum concinere ; &
Harmonia à Muficis dicitur in Cantu, eam eße in Civitate Concordiam.