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1 Chatillon,] In the old copy this name is *pelt Chattglion, ■TOMNta.
Chat. Thus, after greeting, speaks the King of France, In my behaviour, to the majesty, The borrow'd majesty, of England here.
Eli. A strange beginning;—borrow'd majesty! K. John. Silence, good mother; hear the
embassy. Chat. Philip of France, in right and true behalf
Of thy deceased brother Geffrey's son,
K. John. What follows, if we disallow of this?
Chat. The proud control of fierce and bloody war, To enforce these rights so forcibly withheld.
K. John. Here have we war for war, and blood for blood, Controlment for controlment: so answer France.
Chat. Then take my king's defiance from my mouth, The farthest limit of my embassy.
K. John. Bear mine to him, and so depart in peace. Be thou as lightning in the eyes of France; For ere thou canst report I will be there, The thunder of my cannon shall be heard. So hence! be thou the trumpet of our wrath, And sullen* presage of your own decay.— An honourable conduct let him have: Pembroke, look to't,—Farewell, Chatillon.
[Exeunt Chatillon and Pembroke.
Ell What now, my son? have I not ever said, How that ambitious Constance would not cease, Till she had kindled France, and all the world, Upon the right and party of her son? This might have been prevented, and made whole, With very easy arguments of love; Which now the manage1" of two kingdoms must With fearful bloody issue arbitrate.
K. John. Our strong possession, and our right, for us.
Eli. Your strong possession, much more than your right; Or else it must go wrong with you and me: So much my conscience whispers in your ear, Which none but Heaven, and you, and I, shall hear.
Enter the Sheriff of Northamptonshire, who whispers Essex.
Essex. My liege, here is the strangest controversy, Come from the country to be judged by you,
» And sullen presage—] That is, doleful, melancholy presage. Thus, in "Henry IV." Part 11. Act I. Sc. I,—
14 and his tongue
Sounds ever after as a Mullen bell,
b The manage—] Manage of old meant government, control,
That e'er I heard: shall I produce the men'?
K. John. Let them approach.— [Exil Sheriff. Our abbeys and our priories shall pay This expedition's charge.
Re-enter Sheriff, with Bobert Faulconbiudor, and Philip, his bastard Brother.
What men are you?
Bast. Your faithful subject, I; a gentleman. Born in Northamptonshire; and eldest son, As I suppose, to Robert Faulconbridge, A soldier, by the honour-giving hand Of Cceur-dc-lion, knighted in the field.
K. John. What art thou?
Bob. The son and heir to that same Faulconbridge.
K. John. Is that the elder, and art thou the heir? You came not of one mother, then, it seems.
Bast. Most certain of one mother, mighty king. That is well known; and, as I think, one father: But, for the certain knowledge of that truth, I put you o'er to Heaven, and to my mother; Of that I doubt, as all men's children may.
Eli. Out on thee, rude man! thou dost shame thy mother, And wound her honour, with this diffidence.
Bast. I, madam? no, I have no reason for it; That is my brother's plea, and none of mine; The which if he can prove, 'a pops me out At least from fair five hundred pound a-year: Heaven guard my mother's honour, and my land!
K. John. A good blunt fellow —Why, being younger born, Doth he lay claim to thine inheritance?
Bast. I know not why, except to get the land. But once he slander'd me with bastardy: But where I be as true begot, or no, That still I lay upon my mother's head; But, that I am as well begot, my liege, (Fair fall the bones that took the pains for me!) Compare our faces, and be judge yourself. If old sir Robert did beget us both, And were our father, and this son like him, O, old sir Robert, father, on my knee I give Heaven thanks I was not like to thee!
K. John. Why, what a madcap hath HeaW lent us here!
Eli. He hath a trick of Cceur-dc-lion's face ; The accent of his tongue affecteth him:
■ and to him put
The manage of my state.
The Tempest, Act 1 S* c But whe'r I be as true begot,—] This contraction of «^4 is frequent both in Shakespeare and his contemporaries; but seem usually to have written it vhere.
Do you not read some tokens of my son
K. John. Mine eye hath well examined his parts, And finds them perfect Richard.—Sirrah, speak, What doth move you to claim your brother's land?
Bast. Because he hath a half-face, like my father; With that half-face * would he have all my land: A half-fac'd groat, five hundred pound a-year ! (1)
Bob. Mv gracious liege, when that my father had, ^ our brother did employ my father much,—
Bast. Well, sir, by this you cannot get my land; Your tale must be, how he employ'd my mother.
Bob. And once dispatch'd him in an embassy To Germany, there, with the emperor, To treat of high affairs touching that time. The advantage of his absence took the king, And in the mean time sojourn'd at my father's;
* ■'a* that half-fare—] This is a correction of Theobald's; the fated, 1613. reading, " with half that fact."
* And took it. on his death,—] Steevens is the only one of the p«mentatoTB who notices this expression; and he interprets it to mean, " entertained it as bis fixed opinion, when he was dying." St believe it was a common form of speech, and signified that he "ore, or took oath, upon his death, of the truth of his belief. Tarn Fabrtaff, *' Merry Wives of Windsor," Act 11, Sc. 2, says, "and when Mistress Bridget lost the handle of her fan,
Where how he did prevail, I shame to speak;
K. John. Sirrah, your brother is legitimate; Your father's wife did after wedlock bear him: And, if she did play false, the fault was hers; Which fault lies on the hazards of all husbands That marry wives. Tell me, how if my brother, Who, as you say, took pains to get this son, Had of your father claim'd this son for his?
I took 't upon my honour thou hadst it not." And Prince Henry, in the First Part of "Henry IV." Act II. Sc. 4,—"They take it already upon their salvation." So, also, in Beaumont and Fletcher's play of "The Lover's Progress," Act V. Sc. 3,—
Upon my death
I take It uncompelled, that they were guilty."
We still say, upon my life, upon my honour, meaning, I swear or declare upon my life, &c.
In sooth, good friend, your father might have kept
Rob. Shall, then, my father's will be of no force, To dispossess that child which is not his?
Bast. Of no more force to dispossess me, sir, Than was his will to get me, as I think.
Eli. Whether hadst thou rather be a Faulconbridge, And like thy brother, to enjoy thy land; Or the reputed son of Cceur-de-lion, Lord of thy presence,11 and no land beside?
Bast. Madam, an if my brother had my shape, And I had his, sir Robert' his, like him; And if my legs were two such riding-rods, My arms such eel-skins stuff'd, my face so thin, That in mine car I durst not stick a rose, [goes ; (2) Lest men should say, Look, where three farthings And, to his shape, were heir to all this land, Would I might never stir from off this place, I 'd t give it every foot to have this face; I would not be sir Nobd in any case. [fortune,"
Eli. I like thee well. Wilt thou forsake thy Bequeath thy land to him, and follow me? I am a soldier, and now bound to France.
Bast. Brother, take you my land, I'll take my chance: Your face hath got five hundred pound a year; Yet sell your face for five pence, and 'tis dear.— Madam, I 'll follow you unto the death.
Eli. Nay, Iwould have you go before me thither.
Bast. Our country manners give our betters way.
K. John. What is thy name?
Bast. Philip, my liege; so is my name begun; Philip, good old sir Robert's wife's eldest son.
K. John. From henceforth bear his name whose form thou bearest: Kneel thou down Philip, but arise % more great; Arise sir Richard, and Plantagenet.
Bast. Brother—by the mother's side, give me your hand;
My father gave me honour, yours gave land :—
Eli. The very spirit of Plantagenet!—
Bast. Madam, by chance, but not by truth. What though? Something about, a little from the right,
In at the window, or else o'er the hatch:' Who dares not stir by day must walk by night,
And have is have, however men do catch: Near or far off, well won is still well shot, And I am I, howe'er I was begot.
K. John. Go, Fauleonbridgc: now hast thou thy desire; A landless knight makes thee a landed squire.— Come, madam,—and come, Richard: we must
speed, For France, for France! for it is more than need.
Bast. Brother, adieu: good fortune come to thee! For thou wast got i' the way of honesty.
[Exeunt all except the Bastard. A foot of honour better than I was; But many a many foot of land the worse. Well, now can I make any Joan a lady:— Good den, sir Richard.—God-a-mercy, fellow; And if his name be George, I 'll call him Peter, For new-made honour doth forget men's names: 'Tis too respective and too sociable, For your conversion. Now, your traveller,— He and his toothpick at my worship's mess ;(3> And when my knightly stomach is suffie'd, Why then I suck my teeth, and catechise My picked man8 of countries: My dear sir, Thus, leaning on mine elbow, I begin, I shall beseech you—that is Question now; And then comes Answer like an A B Cb book: 0, sir, says Answer, at your best command; At your employment; at your service, sir:— No, sir, says Question, /, sweet sir, at yours: And so, ere Answer knows what Question would, (Saving in dialogue of compliment, And talking of the Alps and Apennines, The Pyrenean, and the river Po,)
P) First folio, Roberts, (t) First folio, I would.
(J) First folio, rite.
a This concludes,—] "This is a decisive argument. As your father, if he liked him, could not have been forced to resign him; so, not liking him, he is not at liberty to reject him."—Johxsox.
b Whether—] According to strict prosody this word should have been contracted, as in an instance just noted, to where; but the old writers, or their printers, exhibited great laxity in such cases.
c Lord of thy presence,—] Queen Elinor, prepossessed by Philip's gallant bearing and likeness to her son, frames her question Bo as to discover whether he prefers to rest his claim to future distinction as the heir of Faulconbridge, or as the supposed son of Dandelion :—" Would you rather be a Faulconbridge, resembling your brother, but possessed of five hundred pounds a-year in land; or the reputed son of King Richard, with similar personal endowments to his, and no land at all?"
"• I would not be sir Nob—] So the second folio, 1632; the first has, "It would."
e In at the window, or else o'er the hatch :] Proverbial sayings applied to illegitimate children ;—" Woe worth the time that ever I gave suck to a child that came in at the window !"—The Faisi.y of Love, 1608. So, also, in "The Witches of Lancashire," by
Heywood and Broome, 1634 :—" It appears you came »»
at the window."—" I would not have you think I scorn ruf grannam's cat to leap over the hatch."
f Too respective,—j Too mindful, considerate, retrospect*f: and not, I believe, as Steevens interprets it, "respectful" "format.'*
K My picked man—] See Note (d), p. M, of the present voluir*.
h Like an ABC book:} These letters are printed as thej *rr8 pronounced, Absey, in the old copies. An Abscy, or A it C book, was a book to teach the young their letters, catechism, &C. :— '• In the A B C of bokes the least, Yt is written, Deus charitas nt."
It draws toward supper in conclusion so.
But this is worshipful society,
And fits the mounting spirit like myself:
Fur he is but a bastard to the time,
That doth not smack * of observation;
(And so am I, whether I smack, or no ;)
And not alone in habit and device,
Exterior form, outward accoutrement,
But from the inward motion, to deliver
Sweet, sweet, sweet poison for the age's tooth:
HTu'eh, though I will not practise to deceive,
Yet, to avoid deceit, I mean to learn;
For it shall strew the footsteps of my rising.—
But who comes in such haste, in riding robes?
What woman-post is this? hath she no husband,
That will take pains to blow a horn before her?
0 me! it is my mother.
Enter Lady Faulconbridge and James
How now, good lady? What brings you here to court so hastily? Li. Faulc. Where is that slave, thy brother? where is he? That holds in chase mine honour up and down?
Bast. My brother Robert? old sir Robert's son? GJbrand the giant," that same mighty man? Is it sir Robert's son that you seek so? La. Faulc. Sir Robert's son! ay, thou unreverend boy, Sir Robert's son: why scorn'st thou at sir Robert? He is sir Robert's son, and so art thou. Hast. James Gurney, wilt thou give us leave a
while? Go. Good leave,b good Philip. Bast. Philip !—span-ow !'—James,
There's toys abroad ;* anon I'll tell thee more.
[Exit Gubn. -UttLm, I was not old sir Robert's son; ^irRobert might have eat his part in me tpeo Good-Friday, and ne'er broke his fast: *v Robert could do well; Marry—to confess— ttwld bet get me? Sir Robert could not do it;
We know his handiwork.—Therefore, good mother,
La. Faulc. Hast thou conspired with thy
brother too, [honour?
That for thine own gain shouldst defend mine
What means this scorn, thou most untoward knave?
Bast. Knight, knight, good mother,—Basiliscolike;«> What! I am dubb'd; I have it on my shoulder. But, mother, I am not sir Robert's son; I have disclaim'd sir Robert, and my land; Legitimation, name, and all, is gone: Then, good my mother, let me know my father; Some proper man, I hope; who was it, mother?
La. Faulc. Hast thou denied thyself a Faulconbridge?
Bast. As faithfully as I deny the devil.
La. Faulc. King Richard Ceeur-de-lion was thy father: By long and vehement suit I was seduced To make room for him in my husband's bed:— Heaven lay not my transgression to my charge !— Thou' art the issue of my dear offence, Which was so strongly urg'd, past my defence.
Bast. Now, by this light, were I to get again, Madam, I would not wish a better father. Some sins do bear their privilege on earth, And so doth yours; your fault was not your folly; Needs must you lay your heart at his dispose,— Subjected tribute to commanding love,— Against whose fury and unmatched force The awless lion could not wage the fight, Nor keep his princely heart from Richard's hand. He, that perforce robs lions of their hearts, May easily win a woman's. Ay, my mother, With all my heart I thank thee for my father! Who lives and dares but say, thou didst not well When I was got, I'll send his soul to hell. Come, lady, I will show thee to my kin;
And they shall say, when Richard me begot, If thou hadst said him nay, it had been sin:
Who says it was, he lies; I say, 't was not.
Skelton, too, has a long poem, the title of which is " Phijllyp Sparou-e."
d There's toys abroad;'] Toys may mean here rumours, idle reports, and the like; or tricks, devices, &C. ; for Shakespeare uses the word with great latitude.
e Thou art the issue— ] The old copy has, " That art," Src.; for which limit' substituted Thou, &c. Sume altcrntinn was certainly required; but this is not satisfactory I am half persuaded the misprint to be corrected is in the preceding line, and that we ought to read,—
"Heaven lay not my transgression to thy charge
She had a moment before confessed that Richard Cocur-de-lion was his father; and " Thou art the issue" is a needless repetition of the avowal.