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Edith. Thy death ! - to-day ! | The king's foundation, that have follow'd Is it not thy birthday?
him. Harold. Ay, that happy day!! Edith. O God of battles, make their A birthday welcome! happy days and wall of shields many !
Firm as thy cliffs, strengthen their pali. One -- this! [They embrace.
sades ! Look, I will bear thy blessing into the What is that whirring sound ? battle
The Norman arrow ! And front the doom of God.
Edith. Look out upon the battle - is Norman Cries (heard in the distance). he safe? Ha Rou! Ha Rou!
Stigand. The king of England stands
between his banners. Enter Gurth.
He glitters on the crowning of the Gurth. The Norman moves !
Exeunt HAROLD and GURTH. Edith. - chosen by his people,
And fighting for his people!
There is one Stigand. Our Church in arms — the Come as Goliath came of yore — he flings lamb the lion — not
His brand in air and catches it again; Spear into pruning-hook — the counter He is chanting some old war-song. way
And no David Cowl, heim; and crozier, battle-axe. To meet him? Abbot Alfwig,
Stigand. Ay, there springs a Saxon Leofric, and all the monks of Peter- ! on him, boro'
Falls -- and another falls. Strike for the king ; but I, old wretch, Edith.
Have mercy on us ! old Stigand,
Stigand. Lo ! our good Gurth hath With hands too limp to brandish iron ||
smitten him to the death. and yet
Edith. So perish all the enemies of I have a power — would Harold ask me Harold ! for it —
Canons (singing). I have a power.
Hostis in Angliam Edith. What power, holy father?
Ruit prædator, Stigand. Power now from Harold to
Scutum scindatur! command thee hence
Hostis per Angliæ And see thee safe from Senlac.
Plagas bacchatur; Edith.
I remain !
Casa crematur, Stigand. Yea, so will I, daughter,
Pastor fugatur until I find
Grex trucidaturWhich way the battle balance. I can Stigand. Illos, trucida, Domine. see it
Ay, good father. From where we stand : and, live or die, Canons (singing). I would
Illorum scelera I were among them!
Stigand. Our javelins
Answer their arrows. All the Norman
foot Sancta Mater. *
Are storming up the hill. The range Edith. Are those the blessed angels
of knights quiring, father?
Sit, each a statue on his horse, and Stigand. No, daughter, but the canons wait. out of Waltham,
English Cries. Harold and God AlThe a throughout these hymns should be mighty! sounded broad, as in “father.”
Norman Cries. Ha Rou! Ha Rou!
Prona sternatur !
Frange Creator !
Stigand. Yea, yea, for how their lances
snap and shiver
Against the shifting blaze of Harold's Stigand. Look, daughter, look.
axe! Edith. Nay, father, look for mel War-woodman of old Woden, how he Sligand. Our axes lighten with a sin
fells gle flash
The mortal copse of faces! There ! About the summit of the hill, and
And there! heads
The horse and horseman cannot meet the And arms are sliver'd off and splinter'd shield. by
The blow that brains the horseman cleaves Their lightning- and they fly — the
the horse, Norman flies.
The horse and horseman roll along the Edith. Stigand, O father, have we
hill, won the day?
They fly once more, they fly, the NorStigand. No, daughter, no--they fall
man flies! behind the horse Their horses are thronging to the barri
Equus cum equite cades;
Præcipitatur. I see the gonfalon of Holy Peter
Edith. O God, the God of truth hath Floating above their helmets — ha! he heard my cry. is down!
Follow them, follow them, drive them to Edith. He down! Who down?
the sea ! Stigand. The Norman Count is down.
Pena sequatur !
Stigand. Truth! no; a lie ; a trick, Stigand. No, no, he hath risen again
a Norman trick ! - he bares his face -
They turn on the pursuer, horse against Shouts something – he points onward
foot, - all their horse
They murder all that follow. Swallow the hill locust-like, swarming | Edith.
Have mercy on us! up.
Stigand. Hot-headed fools — to burst Edith. O God of battles, make his
the wall of shields ! battle-axe keen
They have broken the commandment of As thine own sharp-dividing justice,
the king! heavy
| Edith. His oath was broken — O holy As thine own bolts that fall on crimeful
Norman Saints, heads
Ye that are now of heaven, and see beCharged with the weight of heaven
yond wherefrom they fall !
Your Nornian shrines, pardon it, parCanons (singing).
don it, Jacta tonitrua
That he forsware himself for all he
Me, me and all! Look out upon the
battle! Deus vastator!
Stigand. They press again upon the Edith. O God of battles, they are
barricades. three to one,
My sight is eagle, but the strife so Make thou one man as three to roll them down !
This is the hottest of it: hold, ash! hold, Canons (singing).
English Cries. Out, out!
Stigand. Ha ! Gurth hath leapt upon They are so much holier than their har. him
lot's son And slain him : he hath fallen. | With whom they play'd their game Edith.
And I am heard. against the king! Glory to God in the Highest ! fallen, Aldwyth. The king is slain, the kingfallen!
dom overthrown ! Stigand. No, no, his horse — he Edith. No matter! mounts another — wields
Aldwyth. How no matter, Harold His war-club, dashes it on Gurth, and
slain ? Gurth,
I cannot find his body. O help me Our noble Gurth, is down!
thou ! Edith.
Have mercy on us ! 0 Edith, if I ever wrought against Stigand. And Leofwin is down!
Have mercy on us ! Forgive me thou, and help me here ! O Thou that knowest, let not my strong Edith.
No matter ! prayer
Aldwyth. Not help me, nor forgive Be weaken'd in thy sight, because I love me ? The husband of another !
Edith. So thou saidest. Norman Cries. Ha Rou! Ha Rou ! Aldwyth. I say it now, forgive me ! Edith. I do not hear our English war Edith.
Cross me not ! cry.
I am seeking one who wedded me in Stigand. No.
secret. Edith. Look out upon the battle – is Whisper! God's angels only know it. he safe?
Ha! Stigand. He stands between the ban What art thou doing here among the ners with the dead
dead ? So piled about him he can hardly They are stripping the dead bodies naked move.
yonder, Edith (takes up the war-cry). Out ! And thou art come to rob them of their out!
rings ! Norman Cries. Ha Rou!
Aldwyth. O Edith, Edith, I have lost
I tell thee, girl, Stigand. The Norman sends his ar- I am seeking my dead Harold. rows up to Heaven,
And I mine! They fall on those within the palisade! | The Holy Father strangled him with a Edith. Look out upon the hill - is Harold there?
Of Peter, and his brother Tostig helpt ; Stigand. Sanguelac — Sanguelac - The wicked sister clapt her hands and the arrow — the arrow! - away ! | laught;
Then all the dead fell on him. SCENE II. – FIELD OF THE DEAD. Aldwyth.
Edith, Edith NIGHT.
Edith. What was he like, this husALDWYTH and EDITH.
band ? like to thee?
Call not for help from me. I knew him Aldwyth. O Edith, art thou here? O
not. Harold, Harold
He lies not here : not close beside the Our Harold - we shall never see him
Here fell the truest, manliest hearts of Edith. For there was more than sister England. in my kiss,
Go further hence and find him. And so the saints were wroth. I cannot Aldwyth.
She is crazed ! love them,
Edith. That doth not matter either. For they are Norman saints — and yet Lower the light I should
| He must be here.
Enter troo Canons, Osgod and ATHELRIC, I I am too wise ... Will none among you with torches. They turn over the dead bodies and examine them as they pass. Bear me true witness - only for this Osgod. I think that this is Thurkill.
once Athelric. More likely Godric.
That I have found it here again?
[She puts it on. Is Alfwig, the king's uncle.
And thou Athelric.
So it is ! | Thy wife am I for ever and evermore. No, no — brave Gurth, one gash from
[Falls on the body and dies. brow to knee !
William. Death ! — and enough of Osgod. And here is Leofwin.
death for this one day, Edith.
And here is He! | The day of St. Calixtus, and the day. Aldwyth. Harold ? Oh no — nay, if | My day, when I was born. it were — my God,
And this dead king's, They have so maim'd and martyr'd all / Who, king or not, hath kinglike fought his face
and fallen, There is no man can swear to him. His birthday, too. It seems but yesterEdith.
But one woman! even Look you, we never mean to part again.
I held it with him in his English halls, I have found him, I am happy.
His day, with all his rooftree ringing Was there not some one ask'd me for * Harold," forgiveness ?
Before he fell into the snare of Guy; I yield it freely, being the true wife When all men counted Harold would Of this dead King, who never bore re
be king, venge.
And Harold was most happy. Enter CounT WILLIAM and WILLIAM
William. Thou art half English. MALET.
Take them away!
Malet, I vow to build a church to God William. Who be these women ?
Here on this hill of battle ; let our high And what body is this?
altar Edith. Harold, thy better !
Stand where their standard fell... William. Ay, and what art thou ?
where these two lie. Edith. His wife!
Take them away, I do not love to see Malet. Not true, my girl, here is the
them. Queen! [Pointing out ALDWYTH.
Pluck the dead woman off the dead man, William (to ALDWYTH). Wast thou
Malet ! his Queen ?
Malet. Faster than ivy. Must I hack Aldwyth. I was the Queen of Wales.
her arms off ? William. Why then of England.
How shall I part them ?
William. Leave them. Let them (To MALET.)
be! Knowest thou this other ? Malet. When I visited England,
vd Bury him and his paramour together. Some held she was his wife in secret —
He that was false in oath to me, it seems
| Was false to his own wife. We will some Well — some believed she was his para
not give him
“ | A Christian burial : yet he was a warmour,
rior, Edith. Norman, thou liest ! liars all
And wise, yea truthful, till that of you,
blighted vow Your Saints and all! I am his wife !
Which God avenged to-day. and she For look, our marriage ring!
Wrap them together in a purple cloak [She draws it off the finger of Harold.
And lay them both upon the waste seaI lost it somehow --
shore I lost it, playing with it when I was
At Hastings, there to guard the land for
warriorThat bred the doubt : but I am wiser now...
And but that Holy Peter fought for us, My Normans may but move as true And that the false Northumbrian held with me aloof,
To the door of death. Of one self-stock And save for that chance arrow which at first, the Saints
Make them again one people— Norman, Sharpen'd and sent against him — who English; can tell ?
And English, Norman ;-we should have Three horses had I slain beneath me:
a hand twice
To grasp the world with, and a foot to I thought that all was lost. Since I stamp it... knew battle,
Flat. Praise the Saints. It is over. No And that was from my boyhood, never more blood ! yet
I am King of England, so they thwart No, by the splendor of God – have I me not, fought men
And I will rule according to their laws. Like Harold and his brethren, and his
(To ALDWYTH.). guard
Madam, we will entreat thee with all Of English. Every man about his king honor. Fell where he stood. They loved him: Aldwyth. My punishment is more and, pray God
than I can bear.