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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 !
hill. Harold. Harold and Holy Cross ! God save King Harold !
[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, helm; 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.
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,
Grex trucidaturuntil I find Which way the battle balance. I can Stigand. Illos, trucida, Domine.
Ay, good father. From where we stand : and, live or die, Canons (singing). I would
Illorum scelera I were among them !
Pena sequatur !
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 Al. The a throughout these hymns should be
mighty! sounded broad, as in “father.
Norman Cries. Ha Rou! Ha Ron !
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. Edith. Nay, father, look for mel War-woodman of old Woden, how he Sligand. Our axes lighten with a sin.
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 won the day?
They fly once more, they fly, the Nor. Stigand. No, daughter, no
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.
Pæna 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
They murder all that follow.
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 Norman shrines, pardon it, parCanons (singing).
That he forsware himself for all he
Me, me and all ! Look out upon the Fulmina, fulmina
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 thickthem 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 king. fallen!
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
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
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 Edith (cries out). Harold and Holy
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
hair Harold there?
Of Peter, and his brother Tostig helpt ; Stigand. Sanguelac Sanguelac The wicked sister clapt her hands and the arrow the arrow ! – away !
Then all the dead fell on him. SCENE II. – FIELD OF THE DEAD. Aldwyth.
Edith, Edith NIGHT.
Edith. What was he like, this hus. ALDWYTH 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 two Canons, Osgod and ATHELRIC, | I am too wise ... Will none among you
with torches. They turn over the dead all bodies and examine them as they pass. Bear me true witness — only for this Osgod. I think that this is Thurkill. Athelric. More likely Godric. That I have found it here again? Osgod. I am sure this body
[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 ! 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
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.
William, Thou art half English. Enter COUNT WILLIAM and WILLIAM 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 ! Malet. Not true, my girl, here is the Take them away, I do not love to see
them. Queen ! [Pointing out ALDWYTH. William (to ALDWYTH). Wast thou Pluck the dead woman off the dead man,
Malet ! his Queen ?
Malet. Faster than ivy. Must I hack Aldwyth. I was the Queen of Wales. William. Why then of England. How shall I part them ?
her arms off ? Madam, fear us not.
William. Leave them. Let them (TO MALET.)
be ! Knowest thou this other ? Malet. When I visited England, He that was false in oath to me, it seems
Bury him and his paramour together. Some held she was his wife in secret
Was false to his own wife. We will Well some believed she was his
not give him paraA Christian burial : yet he was a war
rior, Edith. Norman, thou liest ! liars all
And wise, yea truthful, till that 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
which wild. That bred the doubt : but I am wiser He did forswear himself -- a warrior
And but that Holy Peter fought for us, My Normans may but move as true And that the false Northumbrian held 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.