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These fiegs of France, that are advanced here
Before the eye and prospect of your town,
Have hither march'd to your endamagement,
The canrons 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 neeping stones,
That as a waist do girdle you about,
By the compulsion of their ordinance
By this tiine from their fixed beds of lime
Had been dishabited, and wide havock made
For bloody power to rush upon your peace.
Put on the light of us your lawful king,
(Who, painfully, with inuch expedient march
Have brought a counter-check before your gates,
To save unscratch'd your city's threatned cheeks)
Behold, the French, amaz’d, vouchsafe a parle :
And now, instead of bullets wrap'd in fire,
To make a shaking fever in your walls,
They shoot but calin words, folded up in smoak,
To make a faithless error in your ears :
Which trust accordingly, kind citizens,
And let in us, your king; whose labour'd spirits,
Fore-weary'd in this action of swift speed,
Crave harbourage within your city-walls.

K. Phil. When I have faid, make answer to us both,
Lo! in this right hand, whose protection
Is most divinely vow'd upon
Of him it holds, stands young Plantagenet ;
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 relicf of this oppressed child,


the right

Religiously provokes. Be pleased then
To pay that duty, which you truly owe
To him that owns it; namely, this young prince :
And then our arms, like to a muzzled bear,
Save in aspect, have all offence seal'd 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


But if you fondly pass our proffer'd offer,
'Tis not the roundure 4 of your old-fac'd walls
Can hide

you from our messengers of war ;
Tho' all these English, and their discipline,
Were harbour'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 poffeffion?

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

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

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

Faulc. (Bastards, and else).

4 'Tis not the roundure, &c.] Roundure means the same as the French rondeur, i. e, the circle.

The word is used by Decker in his Comedy of old Fortunatus, 1600.

your cries to me are musick “ And fill the facrcd roundure of mine ears," &c. STEEVENS.

K. John.

K. John.--To verify our title with their lives,
K. Phil. As many, and as well born bloods as

those Faul. (Some bastards too). K. Phil.--Stand in his face to contradict his claim.

Cit. 'Till you compound whose right is worthiest, We, for the worthieft, 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. Phil. Amen, Amen. -Mount, chevaliers ! to

arms ! · Fault. Saint 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, with your lioness,
I'd set an ox-head to your lion's hide,
And make a monster of


[To Auftrio. Auft. Peace ! no more. Faulc. O, treible ; for you hear the lion roar. K. Jobn. Up higher to the plain; where we'll set

forth In best appointment all our regiments.

Faulc. Speed then to take advantage of the field.

K. Pbil. It shall be fo ;-and at the other hill Command the rest to stand.-God, and our right!

[Exeunt. SCENE II. After excursions, enter the berald of France with trumpets

to the gates.

F. Her. 5 Ye men of Angiers, open wide your gates, And let young Arthur, duke of Bretagne, in;

s Ye men of Angiers, &c.] This speech is very poetical and smooth, and except the conceit of the widow's husband embracing the earth, is just and beautiful. JOHNSON.


Who, by the hand of France, this day hath made
Much work for tears in many an English mother,
Whose sons lye scatter'd on the bleeding ground:
And many a widow's husband groveling lies,
Coldly embracing the discolour'd earth;
While victory with little lofs doth play
Upon the dancing banners of the French;
Who are at hand triumphantly display'd
To enter conquerors, and to proclaim
Arthur of Bretagne, England's king, and yours.

Enter English berald with trumpets.
E. Her. 6 Rejoice, ye men of Angiers, ring your

bells; King John, your king and England's, doth approach, Commander of this hot malicious day! Their armours, that march'd hence so silver-bright, Hither return all gilt with Frenchmens' blood. There stuck no plume in any English crest, That is removed by a staff of France, Our colours do return in those fame hands, That did display them, when we first march'd forth; And, like a jolly troop of huntsmen ?, come Our lusty English, all with purpled hands ; Dy’d in the dying Naughter of their foes. Open your gates, and give the victors way.

Cit.'Heralds, from off our towers we might behold, From first to last, the onset and retire

Rejoice, ye mer of Angiers, &c.] The English herald falls fomewhat below his antagonist. Silver armour gilt with blood is a poor image. Yet our author has it again in Macbeth,

“ Here lay Duncan, " His filver skin lac'd with his golden blood. JOHNSON. ? And, like a jolly troop of huntsmen,) It was, I think, one of the favage practices of the chase, for all to stain their hands in the blood of the deer, as a trophy. JOHNSON.

3 Heralds, from off, &c.] These three speeches seem to have been laboured. The citizen's is the best ; yet both alike we like is a poor gingle. JOHNSON.


Of both your armies; whose equality
By our best eyes cannot be censured:
Blood hath bought blood, and blows have answered


Strength match'd with strength, and power

confronted power : Both are alike, and both alike we like. One must prove greatest :-while they weigh so even, We hold our town for neither ; yet for both. Enter the two kings with their powers, at several

doors. K. John. France, hait thou yet more blood to cast


Say, shall the current of our right run on ?
Whose passage, vext with thy impediment,
Shall leave his native channel, and o'er-swell
With course disturb'd even thy confining shores ;
Unless thou let his silver water keep
A peaceful progress to the ocean.
K. Phil. England, thou hast not fav'd one drop of

In this hot trial, more than we of France ;
Rather lost more : and by this hand I swear,
That sways the earth this climate overlooks,
Before we will lay by our just-borne arms,
We'll put thee down, 'gainst whom these arms we bear,
Or add a royal number to the dead;
Gracing the scrowl, that tells of this war's loss,
With daughter coupled to the name of kings.

Fauc. #la, majesty !-how high thy glory towers, When the rich blood of kings is set on fire! Oh, how doth death line his dead chaps with steel; The swords of soldiers are his teeth, his phangs; And now he feasts, 9 mouthing the flesh of men In undetermin’d differences of kings.


mouthing the fejh of men] The old copy reads moufing STEEVENS.


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