« AnteriorContinuar »
First Thane. Too drunk to fight with | At Stamford-bridge. ... the people stu. thee !
pid-sure Second Thane. Fight thou with thine Sleep like their swine. ... in South and own double, not with me,
North at once Keep that for Norman William !
I could not be. First Thane. Down with William.
(Aloud.) Third Thane. The washerwoman's Gurth, Leofwin, Morcar, Edwin ! brat !
(Pointing to the revellers.) The curse of Fourth Thane. The tanner's bastard ! England ! these are drown'd in Fifth Thane. The Falaise byblow!
And cannot see the world but thro' their Enter a THANE, from Pevensey, spatter'd
wines ! with mud.
Leave them! and thee too, Aldwyth, Harold. Ay, but what late guest, must I leave As haggard as a fast of forty days, Harsh is the news ! hard is our honeyAnd caked and plaster'd with a hundred moon ! mires,
Thy pardon. (Turning round to his Hath stumbled on our cups ?
attendants.) Break the banquet Thane from Pevensey. My lord the
up.. Ye four! King !
And thou, my carrier-pigeon of black William the Norman, for the wind had news, changed
Cram thy crop full, but come when thou Haroid. I felt it in the middle of
(Exit HAROLD. that fierce fight At Stamford - bridge. William hath
landed, ha ?
SCENE I. -- A TENT ON A MOUND, confound him !
FROM WHICH CAN BE SEEN THE
FIELD OF SENLAC. I have ridden night and day from Pevensey
Harold, sitting; by him standing HUGH A thousand ships, a hundred thousand
MARGOT the Monk, GURTH, LEOFWIN. Thousands of horses, like as many
Harold. Refer my cause, my crown lions
to Rome !... The wolf Neighing and roaring as they leapt to Mudded the brook, and predetermined
landHarold. How oft in coming hast thou Monk, broken bread ?
Thou hast said thy say, and had my Thane from Pevensey. Some thrice, constant “No
For all but instant battle. I hear no Harold. Bring not thy hollowness On our full feast. Famine is fear, were Margot. Hear me again for the last it but
time. Arise, Of being starved. Sit down, sit down, Scatter thy people home, descend the
hill, And, when again red-blooded, speak Lay hands of full allegiance in thy again;
And crave his mercy, for the Holy Father The men that guarded England to the Hath given this realm of England to the South
Norman. Were scatter'd to the harvest. ... No Harold. Then for the last time,
monk, I ask again To hold their force together. . . . Many When had the Lateran and the Holy are fallen
To do with England's choice of her own | The fowl that fleeth o'er thy field is king?
cursed, Margot. Earl, the first Christian And thou, usurper, liar Cæsar drew to the East
Out, beast monk ! To leave the Pope dominion in the West.
[Lifting his hand to strike him. He gave him all the kingdoms of the GURTH stops the blow. West.
I ever hated monks. Harold. So ! - did he ? - Earl - I
I am but a voice have a mind to play
Among you : murder, martyr me if ye The William with thine eyesight and
will thy tongue.
Harold. Thanks, Gurth! The simEarl - ау.
thou art but a messenger ple, silent, honest man of William.
Is worth a world of tonguesters. (To I am weary - go : make me not wroth
Margot.) Get thee gone ! with thee!
He means the thing he says. See him Margot. Mock-king, I am the mes out safe. senger of God,
Leofwin. He hath blown himself as His Norman Daniel ; Mene, Mene,
red as fire with curses. Tekel !
An honest fool ! Follow me, honest Is thy wrath Hell, that I should spare fool,
But if thou blurt thy curse among our Yon heaven is wroth with thee? Hear
folk, me again!
I know not -- I may give that egg-bald Our Saints have moved the Church that
head moves the world,
The tap that silences. And all the Heavens and very God : Harold.
See him out safe. they heard
(Eseunt LEOFWIN and MARGOT. They know King Edward's promise and Gurth. Thou hast lost thine even thine thine.
temper, brother Harold ! Harold. Should they not know free Harold. Gurth, when I past by Wal. England crowns herself ?
tham, my foundation Not know that he nor I had power to For men who serve the neighbor, not promise ?
themselves, Not know that Edward cancell’d his I cast me down prone, praying; and, own promise ?
when I rose, And for my part therein Back to that They told me that the Holy Rood had juggler,
(Rising. lean'd Tell hin the Saints are nobler than he and bow'd above me ; whether that dreams,
which held it Tell him that God is nobler than the Had weaken'd, and the Rood itself were Saints,
bound And tell him we stand arm'd on Senlac To that necessity which binds us down ; Hill,
Whether it bow'd at all but in their And bide the doom of God.
fancy ; Margot.
Hear it thro' me. Or if it bow'd, whether it symboll'd ruin The realm for which thou art forsworn Or glory, who shall tell ? but they were is cursed,
sad, The babe enwomb'd and at the breast is And somewhat sadden'd me. cursed,
Yet if a fear, The corpse thou whelmest with thine Or shadow of a fear, lest the strange earth is cursed,
Saints The soul who fighteth on thy side is By whom thou swarest should have
cursed, The seed thou sowest in thy field is Thy puissance in this fight with him, cursed,
who made The steer wherewith thou ploughest thy And heard thee swear — brother - 1 field is cursed,
have not sworn
power to balk
li' the king fall, may not the kingdom Harold.
Ay, if Wisdom fall ?
Pair'd nor with Good. But I am someBut if I fall, I fall, and thou art king; And if I win, I win, and thou art king; A snatch of sleep were like the peace Draw thou to London, there make of God. strength to breast
Gurth, Leofwin, go once more about the Whatever chance, but leave this day to hill
What did the dead man call it - SanLeofwin (entering). And waste the guelac,
land about thee as thou goest, The lake of blood ? And be thy hand as winter on the field, Leofwin. A lake that dips in William To leave the foe no forage.
As well as Harold. Harold.
Noble Gurth! Harold. Like enough. I have seen Best son of Godwin! If I fall, I fall — The trenches dug, the palisades upThe doom of God! How should the
rear'd people fight
And wattled thick with ash and willow. When the king flies? And, Leofwin,
wands; art thou mad ?
Yea, wrought at them myself. Go How should the King of England waste round once more; the fields
See all be sound and whole. No NorOf England, his own people ? — No man horse glance yet
Can shatter England, standing shield Of the Northumbrian helmet on the by shield; heath?
Tell that again to all. Leofwin. No, but a shoal of wives Gurth.
I will, good brother. upon the heath,
Harold. Our guardsman hath but And some one saw thy willy-nilly nun
toil'd his hand and foot, Vying a tress against our golden fern. I hand, foot, heart and head. Some Harold. Vying a tear with our cold
wine ! dews, a sigh
One pours wine into a goblet, which With these low-moaning heavens. Let he hands to HAROLD. her be fetch'd.
Too much! We have parted from our wife without What? we must use our battle-axe toreproach,
day. Tho' we have dived thro' all her prac- Our guardsmen have slept well, since
we came in? And that is well.
Leofwin. Ay, slept and snored. Your Leofwin. I saw her even now : second-sighted man She hath not left us.
That scared the dying conscience of the Harold. Nought of Morcar then ? king, Gurth. Nor seen, nor heard ; thine, Misheard their snores for groans. They William's or his own
are up again, As wind blows, or tide flows: belike he And chanting that old song of Brunanwatches,
burg If this war-storm in one of its rough Where England conquer'd. rolls
Harold. That is well. The Norman, Wash up that old crown of Northum- What is he doing ? berland.
Leofwin. Praying for Normandy ; Harold. I married her for Morcar Our scouts have heard the tinkle of a sin against
their bells. The truth of love. Evil for good, it Harold. And our old songs seems,
prayers for England too! Is oft as childless of the good as evil But by all Saints For evil.
Leofwin. Barring the Norman ! Leofwin. Good for good hath borne Harold.
Nay, at times
Were the great trumpet blowing dooms. A bastard false as William,
I needs must rest. Call when the Nor. No other than this way advise the king man moves
Against the race of Godwin. Is it (Exeunt all but Harold. possible No horse thousands of horses our That mortal men should bear their shield wall
earthly heats Wall break it not break not Into yon bloodless world, and threaten break
us thence Vision of Edward. Son Harold, I Unschool'd of Death? Thus then thou thy king, who came before
art revengedTo tell thee thou shouldst win at Stam- I left our England naked to the South ford-bridge,
To meet thee in the North. The NorseCome yet once more, from where I am man's raid
Hath helpt the Norman, and the race Because I loved thee in my mortal day, of Godwin To tell thee thou shalt die on Senlac Hath ruin’d Godwin. No- our waking hill
thoughts Sanguelac !
Suffer a stormless shipwreck in the pools Vision of Wulfnoth. O brother, from Of sullen slumber, and arise again my ghastly oubliette
Disjointed : only dreams where mine I send my voice across the narrow seas
own self No more, no more, dear brother, never- Takes part against myself! Why? for
a spark Sanguelac !
Of self-disdain born in me when I Vision of Tostig. O brother, most
sware unbrotherlike to me,
Falsely to him, the falser Norman, over Thou gavest thy voice against me in His gilded ark of mummy-saints, by
whom I give my voice against thee from the I knew not that I sware,
- not for my grave
self Sanguelac !
For England - yet not wholly –
Edith, Edith, bones,
Get thou into thy cloister as the king We give our voice against thee out of Will'd it: be safe : the perjury-monheaven!
gering Count Sanguelac ! Sanguelac! The arrow! Hath made too good an use of Holy the arrow !
Church Harold (starting up, battle-axe in To break her close! There the great hand). Away!
God of truth My battle - axe against your voices. Fill all thine hours with peace !- A Peace!
lying devil The king's last word “the arrow !” Hath haunted me — mine oath - my I shall die
wife -- I fain I die for England then, who lived for Had made my marriage not a lie; I England
could not : What nobler ? men must die.
Thou art my bride! and thou in after I cannot fall into a falser world
years I have done no man wrong. Tostig, Praying perchance for this poor soul of
poor brother, Art thou so anger'd ?
In cold, white cells beneath an icy Fain had I kept thine earldom in thy hands
This memory to thee ! -- and this to Save for thy wild and violent will that England, wrench'd
My legacy of war against the Pope All hearts of freemen from thee. I could From child to child, from Pope to Pope, do
from age to age,
Till the sea wash her level with her Harold.
The sign in heaven — the sudden blast Or till the Pope be Christ's.
My fatal oath -- the dead Saints - the Enter ALDWYTH.
dark dreams -Aldwyth (to Edith). Away from him! The Pope's Anathema – the Holy Rood Edith. I will... I have not spoken That bow'd to me at Waltham -- Edith, to the king
if One word ; and one I must. Farewell! I, the last English King of England [Going. Edith.
Not yet. First of a line that coming from the Stay.
people, Edith. To what use?
And chosen by the people Harold. The king commands thee, Harold.
And fighting for woman !
And dying for the people -( To ALDWYTH.)
Living ! living ! Have thy two brethren sent their forces Harold. Yea so, good cheer! thou in ?
art Harold, I am Edith ! Aldwyth. Nay, I fear not.
Look not thus wan ! Harold. Then there's no force in Edith. What matters how I look ? thee !
Have we not broken Wales and NorseThou didst possess thyself of Edward's land ? slain, ear
Whose life was all one battle, incarnate To part me from the woman that I
Their giant-king, a mightier man-in-arms Thou didst arouse the fierce Northum- | Than William. brians !
Harold. Ay, my girl, no tricks in Thou hast been false to England and to him
No bastard he ! when all was lost, he As ... in some sort ... I have been false
yell’d, to thee.
And bit his shield, and dash'd it on the Leave me.
And swaying histwo-handed sword about Aldwyth. Alas, my lord, I loved thee. him, Harold.
With a love Two deaths at every swing, ran in upon Passing thy love for Griffyth ! wherefore now
And died so, and I loved him as I hate Obey my first and last commandment. This liar who made me liar. If Hate Go!
can kill, Aldwyth. O Harold ! husband! Shall And Loathing wield a Saxon battle
we meet again? Harold. After the battle after the Edith. Waste not thy might before battle. Go.
the battle! Aldwyth. I go. (Aside.) That I Harold. And thou must hence. Sti. could stab her standing there ! gand will see thee safe,
[Exit ALDWYTH. And so Farewell. Edith. Alas, my lord, she loved thee.
[He is going, but turns back. Harold. Never ! never !
The ring thou darest not wear, Edith. I saw it in her
I have had it fashion'd, see, to meet my Harold. I see it in thine.
hand. And not on thee -- nor England — fall [HAROLD shows the ring which is on God's doom !
his finger. Edith. On thee? on me. And thou Farewell ! art England ! Alfred
[He is going, but turns back again. Was England. Ethelred was nothing. I am dead as Death this day to aught England
of earth's Is but her king, and thou art Harold !
Save William's death or mine.