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I would not have believed no tongue, but Hubert's.
Hub. Come forth.
(Stamps. Re-enter ATTENDANTS, with Cord, Irons, &c. Do as I bid you do.
Arth. O, save me, Hubert, save me! my eyes are out, Even with the fierce looks of these bloody men.
Hub. Give me the iron, I say, and bind him here.
Arth. Alas, what need you be so boist'rous-rough?
I will not struggle, I will stand stone-still.
For heaven's sake, Hubert, let me not be bound !
Nay, hear me, Hubert! drive these men away,
And I will sit as quiet as a lamb;
I will not stir, nor wince, nor speak a word,
Nor look upon the iron angerly:
Thrust but these men away, and I 'll forgive you,
Whatever torment you do put me to.
Hub. Go, stand within ; let me alone with him.
1st Attend. I am best pleas'd to be from such a deed.
Arth. Alas, I then have chid away my friend ;
He hath a stern look, but a gentle heart:-
Let him come back, that his compassion may
Give life to yours.
Hub. Come, boy, prepare yourself.
Arth. Is there no remedy?
Hub. None, but to lose your eyes.
Arth. O Heaven!-that there were but a mote in yours,
A grain, a dust, a gnat, a wand'ring hair,
Any annoyance in that precious sense!
Then, feeling what small things are boist'rous there,
Your vile intent must needs seem horrible.
Hub. Is this your promise ? go to, hold your tongue.
Arth. Let me not hold my tongue; let me not, Hubert ! Or, Hubert, if you will, cut out my tongue, So I may keep mine eyes; 0, spare mine eyes; Though to no use, but still to look on you ! Lo, by my troth, the instrument is cold, And would not harm me.
Hub. I can heat it, boy. Arth. No, in good sooth; the fire is dead with grief. All things, that you should use to do me wrong, Deny their office: only you do lack That mercy, which fierce fire, and iron, extends.
Hub. Well, see to live ; I will not touch thine eyes For all the treasure that thine uncle owes : Yet am I sworn, and I did purpose, boy, With this same very iron to burn them out.
Arth. O, now you look like Hubert ! all this while You were disguised.
Hub. Peace : no more. Adieu;
Your uncle must not know but you are dead:
I 'll fill these dogged spies with false reports.
And, pretty child, sleep doubtless, and secure,
That Hubert, for the wealth of all the world,
Will not offend thee.
Arth. O Heaven !-I thank
Hub. Silence; no more: Go closely in with me;
Much danger do I undergo for thee.
King John and Hubert. Hub. My lord, they say, five moons were seen to-night: Four fixed; and the fifth did whirl about The other four, in wond'rous motion.
K. John. Five moons ?
Hub. Old men, and beldams in the streets
Do prophesy upon it dangerously :
Young Arthur's death is common in their mouths:
And when they talk of him, they shake their heads,
And whisper one another in the ear;
And he, that speaks, doth gripe the hearer's wrist
Whilst he, that hears, makes fearful action
With wrinkled brows, with nods, with rolling eyes.
I saw a smith stand with his hammer, thus,
The whilst his iron did on the anvil cool,
With open mouth swallowing a tailor's news:
Who, with his shears and measure in his hand,
Standing on slippers (which his nimble haste
Had falsely thrust upon contrary feet)
Told of a many thousand warlike French,
That were embatteled and rank'd in Kent:
Another lean unwash'd artificer
Cuts off his tale, and talks of Arthur's death.
K. John. Why seek'st thou to possess me with these
Why urgest thou so oft young Arthur's death?
Thy hand hath murder'd him: I had mighty cause
To wish him dead, but thou hadst none to kill him.
Hub. Had none, my lord ! Why, did you not provoke me?
K. John. It is the curse of kings, to be attended
By slaves, that take their humours for a warrant
To break within the bloody house of life:
And, on the winking of authority,
To understand a law; to know the meaning
Of dangerous majesty, when, perchånce, it frowns
More upon humour than advis'd respect.
Hub. Here is your hand and seal for what I did.
K. John. Oh, when the last account 'twixt heaven and
Is to be made, then shall this hand and seal
Witness against us to damnation!
Mad'st it no conscience to destroy a prince.
Hub. My Lord-
K. John. Hadst thou but shook thy head, or made a
When I spake darkly what I purposed;
Or turn'd an eye of doubt upon my face;
Or bid me tell my tale in express words;
Deep shame had struck me dumb, made me break off,
And those thy fears might have wrought fears in me:
But thou didst understand me by my signs,
And didst in signs again parley with sin;
Yea without stop, didst let thy heart consent,
And, consequently, thy rude hand to act
The deed, which both our tongues held vile to name
Out of my sight, and never see me more !
My nobles leave me; and my state is brav'd
Even at my gates, with ranks of foreign powers:
Nay, in the body of this fleshly land,
How oft the sight of means to do ill deeds,
Makes deeds ill done! Hadest not thou been by,
A fellow by the hand of nature mark’d,
Quoted, and sign'd, to do a deed of shame,
This murder had not come into my mind :
But taking note of thy abhorr'd aspect,
Finding thee fit for bloody villany,
Apt, liable, to be employ'd in danger,
I faintly broke with thee of Arthur's death ;
And thou, to be endeared to a king,
This kingdom, this confine of blood and breath,
Hostility and civil tumult reigns
Between my conscience, and my cousin's death.
Hub. Arm you against your other enemies,
I'll make a peace between your soul and you.
Young Arthur is alive : This hand of mine
Is yet a maiden and an innocent hand,
Not painted with the crimson spots of blood.
Within this bosom never enter'd yet
The dreadful notion of a murd'rous thought,
And you have slander'd nature in my form;
Which howsoever rude exteriorly,
Is yet the cover of a fairer mind
Than to be butcher of an innocent child.
K. John. Doth Arthur live? O, haste thee to the peers,
Throw this report on their incensed rage,
And make them tame to their obedience!
Forgive the comment that my passion made
Upon thy feature; for my rage was blind,
And foul imaginary eyes of blood
Presented thee more hideous than thou art.
Oh, answer not; but to my closet bring
The angry lords, with all expedient haste :
I conjure thee but slowly; run more fast.
Duke and Duchess of York.
Duch. My lord, you told me you would tell the rest,
When weeping made you break the story off
Of our two cousins coming into London.
York. Where did I leave ?
Duch. At that sad stop, my lord,
Where rude misgovern'd hands, from window-tops,
Threw dust and rubbish on king Richard's head.
York. Then, as I said, the duke, great Bolingbroke!
Mounted upon a hot and fiery steed,
Which his aspiring rider seem'd to know-
With slow, but stately pace, kept on his course,
While all tongues cry'd—God save thee, Bolingbroke!
You would have thought, the very windows spake,
So many greedy looks of young and old
Through casements darted their desiring eye
Upon his visage; and that all the walls,
With painted imagery,* had said at once-
Jesu preserve thee! welcome, Bolingbroke!
Whilst he, from one side to the other turning,
Bare-headed, lower than his proud steed's neck,
Bespoke them thus—I thank you, countrymen:
And thus still doing, thus he past along,
Duch. Alas, poor Richard! where rides he the while ?
York. As, in a theatre, the eyes of men, After a well-grac'd actor leaves the stage, Are idly bent on him that enters next, Thinking his prattle to be tedious: Even so, or with much more contempt, men's eyes Did scowl on Richard; no man cry'd, God save him! No joyful tongue gave him his welcome home : But dust was thrown upon his sacred head; Which with such gentle sorrow he shook offHis face still combating with tears and smiles, The badges of his grief and patienceThat had not God, for some strong purposc steeld The hearts of men, they must perforce have melted, And barbarism itself have pitied him.
*Tapestry hung from the windows.
NIGHT BEFORE THE BATTLE OF AGINCOURT.
From camp to camp, through the foul womb of night,
The hum of either army stilly sounds,
That the fix'd sentinels almost receive
The secret whispers of each other's watch.
Fire answers fire ; and through their paly flames
Each battle sees the other's umber'd face:
Steed threatens steed, in high and boastful neighs,
Piercing the night's dull ear; and from the tents,
The armourers, accomplishing the knights,
With busy hammers closing rivets up,
Give dreadful note of preparation.
The country cocks do crow, the clocks do toll ;
And the third hour of drowsy morning nam’d.
Proud of their numbers and secure in soul,
The confident and over-lusty French
Do the low-rated English play at dice;
And chide the cripple tardy-gaited night,
Who, like a foul and ugly witch, doth limp
So tediously away. The poor condemned English,
Like sacrifices, by their watchful fires
Sit patiently, and inly ruminate
The morning's danger; and their gesture sad,
Investing lank-lean cheeks, and war-worn coats,
Presenteth them unto the gazing moon
So many horrid ghosts. O, now, who will behold
The royal captain of this ruin'd band,
Walking from watch to watch, from tent to tent,
Let him cry, Praise and glory on his head !
For forth he goes, and visits all his host;
Bids them good-morrow, with a modest smile;
And calls them, brothers, friends, and countrymen,
Upon his royal face there is no note
How dread an army hath enrounded him ;
Nor doth he dedicate one jot of color
Unto the weary and all-watched night;
But freshly looks, and overbears attaint,
With cheerful semblance and sweet majesty ;
That every wretch, pining and pale before,
Beholding him, plucks comfort from his looks.
A largess universal, like the sun,
His liberal eyc doth give to every one,
Thawing cold fear.
SOLILOQUY OF KING HENRY VI. ON THE FIELD OF BATTLE,
This battle fares like to the morning's war,
When dying clouds contend with growing light:
What time the shepherd, blowing of his nails,