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Than thou and John in manners; being as like,
As rain to water, or devil to his dam.
My boy a bastard! By my soul, I think,
His father never was so true begot;
It cannot be, an if thou wert his mother.

Eli. There's a good mother, boy, that blots thy father.
Const. There's a good grandam, boy, that would
Aust. Peace!

[blot thee. Bast.

Hear the crier. Aust.

What the devil art thou ? Bast. One that will play the devil, sir, with you, An ’a may catch your hide and you alone. You are the hare of whom the proverb goes, Whose valour plucks dead lions by the beard ; I'll smoke your skin-coat, an I catch you right; Sirrah, look to't; i'faith, I will, i'faith.

· Blanch. O, well did he become that lion's robe, That did disrobe the lion of that robe!

Bast. It lies as sightly on the back of him,
As great Alcides' shoes upon an ass :-
But, ass, I'll take that burden from your back;
Or lay on that, shall make your shoulders crack.

Aust. What cracker is this same, that deafs our ears With this abundance of superfluous breath?

K. Phi. Lewis, determine what we shall do straight.

Lew. Women and fools, break off your conference. King John, this is the very sum of all, England, and Ireland, Anjou, Touraine, Maine, In right of Arthur do I claim of thee: Wilt thou resign them, and lay down thy arms ?

K. John. My life as soon :--I do defy thee, France.
Arthur of Bretagne, yield thee to my hand;
And, out of my dear love, I'll give thee more
Than e'er the coward hand of France can win:
Submit thee, boy.
Eli.

Come to thy grandam, child.
Const. Do, child, go to it' grandam, child;
Give grandam kingdom, and it grandam will
Give it a plum, a cherry, and a fig:
There's a good grandam.

Arth.

Good, my mother, peace! I would, that I were low laid in my grave; I am not worth this coil, that's made for me. Eli. His mother shames him so, poor boy, he

weeps. Const. Now shame upon you, whe'r she does, or no! His grandam's wrongs, and not his mother's shames, Draw those heaven-moving pearls from his poor eyes, Which heaven shall take in nature of a fee; Ay, with these crystal beads heaven shall be brib'd To do him justice, and revenge on you.

Eli. Thon monstrous slanderer of heaven and earth!

Const. Thou monstrous injurer of heaven and earth!
Call not me slanderer; thou, and thine, usurp
The dominations, royalties, and rights,
Of this oppressed boy: This is thy eldest son's son,
Infortunate in nothing but in thee;
Thy sins are visited in this poor child;
The canon of the law is laid on him,
Being but the second generation
Removed from thy sin-conceiving womb.

K. John. Bedlam, have done.
Const.

I have but this to say,
That he's not only plagued for her sin,
But God hath made her sin and her the plague
On this removed issue, plagu'd for her,
And with her plague, her sin; his injury
Her injury, the beadle to her sin;
All punish'd in the person of this child,
And all for her; A plague upon her!

Eli. Thou unadvised scold, I can produce A will, that bars the title of thy son.

Const. Ay, who doubts that? a will! a wicked will; A woman's will; a canker'd grandam's will!

K. Phi. Peace, lady; pause, or be more temperate : Il ill beseems this presence, to cry aim To these ill-tuned repetitions.Some trumpet summon hither to the walls These men of Angiers; let us hear them speak, Whose title they admit, Arthur's or John's.

Trumpets sound. Enter Citizens upon the Walls.
1 Cit. Who is it, that hath warn'd us to the walls?
K. Phi. 'Tis France, for England.
K. John.

England, for itself: You men of Angiers, and my loving subjects,

K. Phi. You loving men of Angiers, Arthur's subjects, Our trumpet call'd you to this gentle parle.

K. John. For our advantage ;—Therefore, hear us
These flags of France, that are advanced here [first.--
Before the eye and prospect of your town,
Have hither march'd to your endamagement:
The cannons have their bowels full of wrath;
And ready mounted are they, to spit forth
Their iron indignation 'gainst your walls :
All preparation for a bloody siege,
And merciless proceeding by these French,
Confront your city's eyes, your winking gates ;
And, but for our approach, those sleeping stones,
That as a waist do girdle you about,
By the compulsion of their ordnance
By this time from their fixed beds of lime
Had been dishabited, and wide havoc made
For bloody power to rush upon your peace.
But, on the sight of us, your lawfal king,
Who painfully, with much expedient march,
Have brought a countercheck before your gates,
To save unscratch'd your city's threaten'd cheeks,
Behold, the French,

amaz’d, vouchsafe a parle:
instead of bullets wrapp'd in fire,
To make a shaking fever in your walls,
They shoot but calm words, folded up in smoke,
To make a faithless error in your ears:
Which trust accordingly, kind citizens,
And let us in, your king ; whose labour'd spirits,
Forwearied in this action of swift speed,
Crave harbourage within your city walls.

K. Phi. When I have said, make answer to us both.
Lo, in this right hand, whose protection
Is inost divinely vow'd, upon the right

And now,

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Of him it holds, stands young Planlagenet;
Son to the elder brother of this man,
And king o'er him, and all that he enjoys:
For this down-trodden equity, we tread
In warlike march these greens before your town;
Being no further enemy to you,
Than the constraint of hospitable zeal,
In the relief of this oppressed child,
Religiously provokes. Be pleased then
To pay that duty, which you truly owe,
To him that owes it; namely, this young prince:
And then our arms, like to a muzzled bear,
Save in aspect, have all offence seald up;
Our cannons' malice vainly shall be spent
Against the invulnerable clouds of heaven;
And, with a blessed and unvex'd retire,
With unhack'd swords, and helmets all unbruis'd,
We will bear home that lusty blood again,
Which here we came to spout against your town,
And leave your children, wives, and you, in peace.
But if you fondly pass our proffer'd offer,
'Tis not the roundúre of your old-fac'd walls
Can hide you from our messengers of war;
Though all these English, and their discipline,
Were barbour'd in their rude circumference,
Then, tell us, shall your city call us lord,
In that behalf which we have challeng'd it?
Or shall we give the signal to our rage,
And stalk in blood to our possession?

1 Cit. In brief, we are the king of England's subjects; For him, and in his right, we hold this town.

K. John. Acknowledge theu the king, and let me in.

1 Cit. That can we not: but he that proves the king, To him will we prove loyal; till that time, Have we ramm'd up our gates against the world. K. John. Doth not the crown of England prove the

king? And, if not that, I bring you witnesses, Twice fifteen thousand hearts of England's breed,

Bast. Bastards, and else.

K. John. To verify our title with their lives.
K. Phi. As many, and as well-born bloods as those,
Bast. Some bastards too.
R. Phi. Stand in his face, to contradict his claim.

1 Cit. Till you compound whose right is worthiest, We, for the worthiest, hold the right from both.

K. John. Then God forgive the sin of all those souls, That to their everlasting residence, Before the dew of evening fall, shall fleet, In dreadful trial of our kingdom's king!

K. Phi. Amen, Amen!—Mount, chevaliers ! to arms! Bast. St. George,—that swing'd the dragon, and e'er

since, Sits on his horseback at mine hostess' door, Teach us some fence !-Sirrah, were I at home, At your den, sirrah [To Austria), with your lioness, I'd set an ox-head to your lion's hide, And make a monster of you. Aust.

Peace; no more. Bast. O, tremble; for you hear the lion roar.

K.John. Up higher to the plain; where we'll set forth, In best appointment, all our regiments.

Bast. Speed then, to take advantage of the field.
K. Phi. It shall be so ;-—[To Lewis) and at the other

hill
Command the rest to stand.-God, and our right!

(Exeunt. SCENE II. The same. Alarums and Excursions; then a Retreat. Enter a

French Herald, with Trumpets, to the Gates. F. Her. You men of Angiers, open wide your gates, And let young Arthur, duke of Bretagne, in; Who, by the hand of France, this day hath made Much work for tears in many an English mother, Whose sons lie scatter'd on the bleeding ground: Many a widow's husband groveling lies, Coldly embracing the discolour'd earth; And victory, with little loss, doth play Upon the dancing banners of the French;

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