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God is my witness that this weight of Of nights and days unborn, bring some power, one chance,

Which he sets me my earthly task to wield

Under his law, is my delight and pride
Only because thou lovest that and me.
For a king bears the office of a God
To all the under world; and to his God
Alone he must deliver up his trust,
Unshorn of its permitted attributes.
[It seems] now as the baser elements
Had mutinied against the golden sun
That kindles them to harmony, and
quells

Their self-destroying rapine. The wild million

Strike at the eye that guides them; like as humours

Of the distempered body that conspire
Against the spirit of life throned in the
heart,
And thus become the prey of one another,
And last of death-

Strafford. That which would be
ambition in a subject

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Is duty in a sovereign; for on him,
As on a keystone, hangs the arch of life,
Whose safety is its strength. Degree
and form,

And all that makes the age of reasoning

man

More memorable than a beast's, depend On this—that Right should fence itself inviolably

With power; in which respect the state (If kings can have a friend, I call thee of England

Opposing factions,-be thyself of none; And borrow gold of many, for those who lend

Or war or pestilence or Nature's self,
By some distemperature or terrible sign,
Be as an arbiter betwixt themselves.
Nor let your Majesty
Doubt here the peril of the unseen event.
How did your brother kings, coheritors
In your high interest in the subject earth,
Rise past such troubles to that height of
power

Where now they sit, and awfully serene
Smile on the trembling world? Such
popular storms

Will serve thee till thou payest them; and thus

Philip the second of Spain, this Lewis of France,

And late the German head of many bodies,

Keep the fierce spirit of the hour at bay,
Till time, and its coming generations

And every petty lord of Italy,
Quelled or by arts or arms.

poorer
Or feebler? or art thou who wield'st her
power
Tamer than they? or shall this island
be-

Is England

[Girdled] by its inviolable waters—
To the world present and the world to

come

so),

From usurpation by the insolent commons Beyond the large commission which Cries for reform. belongs Get treason, and spare treasure. Fee Under the great seal of the realm, take with coin this: The loudest murmurers; feed with jeal- And, for some obvious reasons, let ousies there be

Sole pattern of extinguished monarchy ?
Not if thou dost as I would have thee do.

King. Your words shall be my deeds: You speak the image of my thought. My friend

No seal on it, except my kingly word
And honour as I am a gentleman.
Be as thou art within my heart and
mind---

Another self, here and in Ireland:
Do what thou judgest well, take amplest
license,

And stick not even at questionable To death, imprisonment, and confisca

means.

tion,

Hear

Add torture, add the ruin of the kindred

me, Wentworth. My word is as a wall Between thee and this world thine Of the offender, add the brand of inenemy-

That hates thee, for thou lovest me.
I own
No friend but thee, no enemies but
thine:

Strafford.

Thy lightest thought is my eternal law.
How weak, how short, is life to pay——
King.
Peace, peace!
Thou ow'st me nothing yet.
My lord, what say

(To LAUD). Those papers? Laud.

They may lick up that scum of schis-
matics.

I laugh at those weak rebels who, de-
siring
What we possess, still prate of Christian
peace,
As if those dreadful arbitrating messen-
gers
Which play the part of God 'twixt right
and wrong,

Your Majesty has ever inter-
posed,
In lenity towards your native soil,
Between the heavy vengeance of the Should be let loose against the innocent
Church

sleep

And Scotland.

Mark the consequence Of templed cities and the smiling fields, of warming For some poor argument of policy This brood of northern vipers in your Which touches our own profit or our

bosom.

pride,

The rabble, instructed no doubt

Where it indeed were Christian charity By Loudon, Lindsay, Hume, and false To turn the cheek even to the smiter's Argyll (For the waves never menace heaven until

hand:

Scourged by the wind's invisible
tyranny),

Have in the very temple of the Lord
Done outrage to his chosen ministers.
They scorn the liturgy of the holy
Church,

Refuse to obey her canons, and deny
The apostolic power with which the
Spirit

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famy,

Add mutilation: and if this suffice not, Unleash the sword and fire, and in their thirst

And, when our great Redeemer, when our God,

When he who gave, accepted, and re-
tained,

Himself in propitiation of our sins,
Is scorned in his immediate ministry,
With hazard of the inestimable loss
Of all the truth and discipline which is
Salvation to the extremest generation
Of men innumerable, they talk of peace!
Such peace as Canaan found, let Scot-
land now:

For, by that Christ who came to bring
a sword,

Not peace, upon the earth, and gave
command
To his disciples at the passover
That each should sell his robe and buy
a sword,—

Once strip that minister of naked wrath,
And it shall never sleep in peace again

Till Scotland bend or break.

King.

Of loyal gentlemen and noble friends My Lord Arch- For the worshipped father of our common country,

bishop,

Do what thou wilt and what thou canst With contributions from the catholics, in this. Will make Rebellion pale in our excess. Be these the expedients until time and wisdom

Shall frame a settled state of govern

ment.

long

Rest on our wills.

Thy earthly even as thy heavenly King Gives thee large power in his unquiet realm.

But we want money, and my mind mis-
gives me

That for so great an enterprise, as yet,
We are unfurnished.

Strafford.

Yet it may not

Cottington.

The expenses
Of gathering shipmoney, and of dis-

training

For every petty rate (for we encounter
A desperate opposition inch by inch
In every warehouse and on every farm),
Have swallowed up the gross sum of
the imposts;

Laud. And weak expedients they!
Have we not drained

which seemed

[Aside to COTTINGTON. It is enough to expect from these lean imposts

That they perform the office of a

All, till the

A mine exhaustless?
Strafford.

Laud. Both now grow barren: and
I speak it not

As loving parliaments, which, as they
have been

In the right hand of bold bad mighty kings

So that, though felt as a most grievous The scourges of the bleeding Church, I

Scourge

hate.

Upon the land, they stand us in small Methinks they scarcely can deserve our
stead
As touches the receipt.
Strafford.

'Tis a conclu

sion
Most arithmetical: and thence you
infer
Perhaps the assembling of a parliament.
Now, if a man should call his dearest
enemies

To sit in licensed judgment on his life,
His Majesty might wisely take that

course.

And the love

which is,

If loyal hearts could turn their blood to

gold.

fear.

Strafford. Oh! my dear liege, take back the wealth thou gavest: With that, take all I held, but as in

trust

For thee, of mine inheritance: leave me
but

This unprovided body for thy service,
And a mind dedicated to no care
Except thy safety :---but assemble not
A parliament. Hundreds will bring,

like me,

Their fortunes, as they would their blood, before

King No! thou who judgest them art but one. Alas!

We should be too much out of love with

Scourge,

Heaven,

Without more profit. (Aloud.) Fines and confiscations,

And a forced loan from the refractory

Did this vile world show many such as thee,

city,

Thou perfect, just, and honourable man! Will fill our coffers: and the golden Never shall it be said that Charles of

love

England

Stripped those he loved for fear of those We must begin first where your Grace he scorns;

leaves off.

Nor will he so much misbecome his
throne

Gold must give power, or――
Laud.

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As to impoverish those who most adorn
And best defend it. That you urge,
dear Strafford,
Inclines me rather-

I am not averse
From the assembling of a parliament.
Strong actions and smooth words might
teach them soon

Queen.

The lesson to obey. And are they not To a parlia- A bubble fashioned by the monarch's

ment?

mouth,

Is this thy firmness? and thou wilt pre- The birth of one light breath? If they side

Over a knot of
censurers,
To the unswearing of thy best resolves,
And choose the worst, when the worst
comes too soon?

serve no purpose,
A word dissolves them.
Strafford.

Plight not the worst before the worst
must come.
Oh, wilt thou smile whilst our ribald
foes,

Dressed in their own usurped authority,
Sharpen their tongues on Henrietta's
fame?

It is enough! Thou lovest me no [Weeps.

more!

King. Oh, Henrietta!
[They talk apart.
Cottington (to LAUD). Money we
have none:
And all the expedients of my Lord of
Strafford

Will scarcely meet the arrears.
Laud.

Without
delay
An army must be sent into the north;
Followed by a Commission of the
Church,

With amplest power to quench in fire
and blood,

The engine of parlia

ments

Might be deferred until I can bring

over

The Irish regiments: they will serve to

assure

The issue of the war against the Scots. And, this game won—which if lost, all is lost

Gather these chosen leaders of the rebels,
And call them, if you will, a parliament.
King. Oh, be our feet still tardy to
shed blood,

Guilty though it may be! I would still

spare

The stubborn country of my birth, and ward

From countenances which I loved in youth

The wrathful Church's lacerating hand. (To Laud). Have you o'erlooked the other articles?

[Re-enter ARCHY. Laud. Hazlerig, Hampden, Pym, young Harry Vane, Cromwell, and other rebels of less note, And tears and terror, and the pity of Intend to sail with the next favouring

wind

hell,

The intenser wrath of Heresy. God For the Plantations.

will give

Victory; and victory over Scotland give
The lion England tamed into our
hands.

That will lend power, and power bring
gold.
Cottington.

Meanwhile

Archy. Where they think to found
A commonwealth like Gonzalo's in the
play,
Gynæcocœnic and pantisocratic.
King. What's that, sirrah?
Archy.
New devil's politics.
Hell is the pattern of all commonwealths:

Lucifer was the first republican.
Will you hear Merlin's prophecy, how day of the holidays.
three posts

"In one brainless skull, when the
whitethorn is full,

Shall sail round the world, and come back again:

Shall sail round the world in a brain

less skull,

Archy. But 'tis all over now: like

And come back again when the moon the April anger of woman, the gentle is at full:"

sky has wept itself serene.

Queen. What news abroad? how looks the world this morning?

Archy. Gloriously as a grave covered with virgin flowers. There's a rainbow So please your Majesty in the sky. Let your Majesty look at it, for

When, in spite of the Church,

They will hear homilies of whatever
length

Or form they please.
Cottington.

to sign this order For their detention.

Archy. If your Majesty were tormented night and day by fever, gout, rheumatism, and stone, and asthma, etc., and you found these diseases had secretly entered into a conspiracy to abandon you, should you think it necessary to lay an embargo on the port by which they meant to dispeople your unquiet kingdom of man?

King.

But in this case- (writing).
my lord, take the warrant,
And see it duly executed forthwith.-
That imp of malice and mockery shall
be punished.

[Exeunt all but KING, QUEEN,
and ARCHY.

presenting them bitter physic the last

and the flocks of which you are the pastor are scattered among the mountain-tops, where every drop of water is a flake of snow, and the breath of May pierces like a January blast.

King. The sheep have mistaken the wolf for their shepherd, my poor boy; If fear were made for kings, and the shepherd, the wolves for their the Fool mocks wisely;

watchdogs.

Here,

Queen. But the rainbow was a good sign, Archy: it says that the waters of the deluge are gone, and can return no more.

Archy. Ay, I am the physician of whom Plato prophesied, who was to be accused by the confectioner before a jury of children, who found him guilty with out waiting for the summing-up, and hanged him without benefit of clergy. Thus Baby Charles, and the Twelfthnight Queen of Hearts, and the overgrown schoolboy Cottington, and that little urchin Laud-who would reduce a verdict of "guilty, death," by famine, if it were impregnable by composition all impannelled against poor Archy for

Queen. Is the rain over, sirrah?
King.
When it rains
And the sun shines, 'twill rain again to-

morrow:

And therefore never smile till you've done crying.

"A rainbow in the morning
Is the shepherd's warning;"

Archy. Ay, the salt-water one: but that of tears and blood must yet come down, and that of fire follow, if there be any truth in lies.-The rainbow hung over the city with all its shops, . . . and churches, from north to south, like a bridge of congregated lightning pieced by the masonry of heaven- like a balance in which the angel that distributes the coming hour was weighing that heavy one whose poise is now felt in the lightest hearts, before it bows the proudest heads under the meanest feet.

Queen. sirrah?

Who taught you this trash, Archy. A torn leaf out of an old

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