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K. Hen. Our tongue is rough, coz; and my condition is not smooth so that, having neither the voice nor the heart of flattery about me, I cannot so conjure up the spirit of love in her, that he will appear in his true likeness. Bur. Pardon the frankness of my mirth, if I answer you for that. If you would conjure in her you must make a circle: if conjure up love in her in his true likeness, he must appear naked and blind: Can you blame her then, being a maid yet rosed over with the virgin crimson of modesty, if she deny the appearance of a naked blind boy in her naked seeing self? It were, my lord, a hard condition for a maid to consign to.

K. Hen. Yet they do wink and yield; as love is blind, and enforces.

Bur. They are then excused, my lord, when they see not what they do.

K. Hen. Then, good my lord, 'each your cousin to consent to winking.

K. Hen. I pray you then, in love and deat alliance,

Let that one article rank with the rest :
And, thereupon, give me your daughter.
Fr. King. Take her, fair son; and from her
blood raise up

Issue to me that the contending kingdoms
of France and England, whose very shores
look pale
With envy of each other's happiness, [tion
May cease their hatred and this dear conjunc-
Plant neighbourhood and Christian-like accord
In their sweet bosoms, that never war advance
His bleeding sword 'twixt England and fair


All. Amen!

K. Hen. Now welcome, Kate :-and bear me witness all,

That here I kiss her as my sovereign queen. [Flourish.

Q. Isa. God, the best maker of all marriages, Combine your hearts in one, your realms in one !

Bur. I will wink on her to consent, my lord, if you will teach her to know my meaning: for maids, well summered and warm kept, are like flies at Bartholomew-tide, blind, though they As man and wife, being two, are one in love, have their eyes; and then they will endure So be there 'twixt your kingdoms such a spousal, handling, which before would not abide look-That never may ill office, or fell jealousy, ing on. Which troubles oft the bed of blessed marriage,

K. Hen. This moral ties me over to time, and a hot summer; and so I will catch the fly, your cousin, in the latter end, and she must be blind too.

Bur. As love is, my lord, before it loves. K. Hen. It is so and you may, some of you, thank love for my blindness; who cannot see many a fair French city, for one fair French maid that stands in my way.

Fr. King. Yes, my lord, you see them perspectively, the cities turned into a maid; for they are all girdled with maiden walls, that war hath never entered.

K. Hen. Shall Kate be my wife?
Fr. King. So please you.

K. Hen. I am content; so the maiden cities you talk of, may wait on her so the maid, that stood in the way of my wish, shall show me the way to my will.

Fr. King. We have consented to all terms of


K., Hen. Is't so, my lords of England ? West. The king hath granted every article: His daughter, first; and then, in sequel all, According to their firm proposed natures.

Exe. Only, he hath not yet subscribed this :Where your majesty demands,-That the king of France, having any occasion to write for matter of grant, shall name your highness in this form, and with this addition, in French, Notre tres cher filz Henry roy d'Angleterre, heretier de France; and thus in Latin,-Preclarissimus filius noster Henricus, rex Anglia, et hæres Francia.

Fr. King. Nor this I have not, brother, so denied,

Hut your request shall make me let it pass.

• Temper.

Thrust in between the paction of these king doms,

To make divorce of their incorporate league ; That English may as French, French Englishmen,

Receive each other !-God speak this Amen!
All. Amen!

K. Hen. Prepare we for our marriage :-on which day,

My lord of Burgundy, we'll take your oath, And all the peers', for surety of our leagues.Then shall I swear to Kate, and you to me: And may our oaths well kept and prosp❜rous be! [Exeunt.


Thus far, with rough, and all unable pen,
Our bending author hath pursued the story;
In little room confining mighty men,

Mangling by starts the full course of their glory. [liv'd Small time, but in that small, most greatly This star of England: fortune made his sword; By which the world's best garden + he achiev'd, And of it left his son imperial lord. Henry the sixth, in infant bands crown'd king Of France and England did this king succeed; Whose state so many had the managing, That they lost France, and made his England bleed : Which oft our stage hath shown; and, for their sake,

In your fair minds let this acceptance take.,


1. e. Unequal to the eight of the subject. † Franet.

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MALONE supposes this portion of Henry VI. to have been written in 1589; but doubts, with Theobald, whether the three plays comprised under the title of Henry VI. were actually composed by Shakspeare. Dr. Johnson however maintains, that they exhibit "no marks of spuriousness," and that they "are declared to be genuine by the voice of Shakspeare himself. The transactions of the piece are scattered through a period of thirty years, and introduced with little regard to historical accuracy. Lord Talbot who is killed at the end of the fourth act, did not in reality fall until July 13, 1453; and the second part of Henry VI. opens with the king's marriage, which was solemnized in the year 1445, or eight years before Talbot's death. In the same part, Dame Eleanor Cobham is introduced to insult Queen Margaret; though her penance and banishment for sorcery happened three years before that princess arrived in England. ------ These deviations from the page of history are of little consequence to the mere lover of dramatic literature, as they neither weaken the gratification, nor diminish the effect of the scenic narrative. Poetry appeals to the passions, and imagination, like a true magician, lends her most powerful spells to excite or subdue them. But there are many to whom the great events of history are known only through the fascinating medium of a play or a romance; and it is frequently difficult, if not disagreeable to efface, in after life, the distorted impressions which they leave upon the memory. When viewed in the sober simplicity of historic truth, a favourite hero often loses much of his glitter, and a detested villain some portion of his turpitude. It is therefore of no little consequence to examine the materials of a dramatic fabric, to separate truth from fiction, and to shew "the age and body of the time, his form and pressure:" because, in lauding the productions of Shakspeare (particularly those historical pieces upon which he exercised such masterly talents,) it has been the fashion to represent them not only as morally entertaining, but also as politically instructive; an attribute with which, examination shows, it is dangerous to invest them.



DUKE OF GLOSTER, Uncle to the King, and

DUKE OF BEDFORD, Uncle to the King, and
Regent of France.

THOMAS BEAUFORT, Duke of Exeter, great
Uncle to the King.

HENRY BEAUFORT, great Uncle to the King,
Bishop of Winchester; and after-
wards Cardinal.

JOHN BEAUFORT, Earl of Somerset ; afterwards Duke.

VERNON, of the White Rose, or York Fattion.

BASSET, of the Red Rose, or Lancaster Fac-

CHARLES, Dauphin, and afterwards King of

REIGNIER, Duke of Anjou, and titular King
of Naples.


RICHARD PLANTAGENET, eldest son of Richard,
late Earl of Cambridge; afterwards A FRENCH SERGEANT.-A PORTER,
Duke of York.
OLD SHEPHERD, Father to Joan la





LORD TALBOT, afterwards Earl of Shrews MARGARET, Daughter to Reignier; after







WOODVILLE, Lieutenant of the Tower.

wards married to King Henry.

JOAN LA PUCELLE, commonly called Joan of

Fiends appearing to La Pucelle, Lords,
Warders of the Tower, Heralds, Officers,
Soldiers, Messengers, and several Attend-
ants both on the English and French.
and partly in France.

SCENE, partly in England,

ACT 1.

SCENE I.-Westminster Abbey. Dead march. Corpse of King HENRY the Fifth discovered, lying in state; attended on by the Dukes of BEDFORD, GLOSTER, and EXETER; the Earl of WARWICK, the Bishop of WINCHESTER, Heralds, &c.

Bed. Hung be the heavens with black, yield day to night!

Comets, importing change of times and states,
Brandish your crystal tresses in the sky;
And with them scourge the bad revolting stars,
That have consented unto Henry's death!
Henry the fifth too famous to live long!
England ne'er lost a king of so much worth.

Glo. England ne'er had a king, until his

Virtue he had, deserving to command:
His brandish'd sword did blind men with his

His arms spread wider than a dragon's wings ;
His sparkling eyes replete with wrathful fire,
More dazzled and drove back his enemies,
Than mid-day sun, fierce beut against their

What should I say? his deeds exceed all speech:
He ne'er lift up his hand, but conquered.

Exe. We mourn in black; Why mourn we not in blood?

Henry is dead, and never shall revive:
Upon a wooden coffin we attend ;
And death's dishonourable victory
We with our stately presence glorify,
Like captives bound to a triumphant car,
What? shall we curse the planets of mishap,
That plotted thus our glory's overthrow?
Or shall we think the subtle-witted French
Conjurers and sorcerers, that, afraid of him,
By magic verses bave contriv'd his end?
Win. He was a king bless'd of the King of

Unto the French the dreadful judgment day
So dreadful will not be, as was his fight.
The battles of the Lord of hosts he fought;
The church's prayers made him so prosperous.
Glo. The church! where is it? Had not
churchmen pray'd,

His thread of life had not so soon decay'd:
None do you like but an effeminate prince,
Whom like a school-boy you may over-awe.
Win. Gloster, whate'er we like, thou art pro-

And lookest to command the prince and realm,
Thy wife is proud; she holdeth thee in awe,
More than God, or religious churchmen, may.
Glo. Name not religion, for thou lov'st the

And ne'er throughout the year 1 church thou go'st,

Except it be to pray against thy foes.

Bed. Cease, cease these jars, and rest your minds in peace!

Let's to the altar :-Heralds, wait on us :-
Instead of gold, we'll offer up our arms;
Since arms avail not, now that Henry's dead.-
Posterity, await for wretched years, [suck;
When at their mothers' moist eyes babes shall
Our isle be made a nourish of salt tears,
And none but women left to wail the dead.
Henry the fifth thy ghost I invocate;
Prosper this realm, keep it from civil broils !
Combat with adverse planets in the heavens !
A far more glorious star thy soul will make,
Tban Julius Cæsar, or bright--


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Bed. Me they coucern; regent I am of France :

Give me my steeled coat, I'll fight for France.Away with these disgraceful wailing robes! Wounds I will lend the French, instead of eyes, To weep their intermissive miseries. +

Enter another MESSENGER.

2 Mess. Lords, view these letters, full of bad mischance,

France is revolted from the English quite;
Except some petty towns of no import:
The dauphin Charles is crowned king tu
Rheims :

The bastard of Orleans with him is join'd;
Reignier, duke of Anjou, doth take his part
The duke of Alençon flieth to his side.

Exe. The Dauphin crowned king! all fy to him ?

O whither shall we fly from this reproach! Glo. We will not fly, but to our enemies' throats:

Bedford, if thou be slack, I'll fight it out

Bed. Gloster, why doubt'st thou of my forwardness!

An army have I muster'd in my thoughts
Wherewith already France is over-run.

Enter a third MESSENGER.

3 Mess. My gracious lords,-to add to your laments, Wherewith you now bedew King Henry's hearse,

I must inform you of a dismal fight,
Betwixt the stout lord Talbot and the French.
Win. What! wherein Talbot overcame ? is't

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3 Mess. O no; wherein lord Talbot was o'er thrown:

The circumstance I'll tell you more at large
The tenth of August last, this dreadful lord,
Retiring from the siege of Orleans,
Having full scarce six thousand in his troop,
By three and twenty thousand of the French
Was round encompassed and set upon :
No leisure had he to enrank his men ;

Mess. My honourable lords, health to you He wanted pikes to set before his archers;


Sad tidings bring I to you out of France,
Of loss, of slaughter, and discomfiture:
Guienne, Champaigue, Rheims, Orleans,
Paris, Guysors, Poictiers, are all quite lost.
Bed. What say'st thou, man, before dead
Henry's corse ?

Speak softly; or the loss of those great towns Will make him burst his lead, and rise from death.

Glo. Is Paris lost? is Rouen yielded up? If Henry were recall'd to life again, These news would cause him once more yield the ghost.

Exe. How were they lost? what treachery was ns'd?

Mess. No treachery; but want of men

Among the soldiers this is muttered,-
That here you maintain several factions;
And whilst a field should be despatch'd


You are disputing of your generals.

Instead whereof, sharp stakes, pluck'd out of


They pitched in the ground confusedly,
To keep the horsemen off from breaking in.
More than three hours the fight continued ;
Where valiant Talbot, above human thought,
Enacted wonders with his sword and lance.
Hundreds he sent to hell, and none durst stand


Here, there, and every where, enrag'd he slew:
The French exclaim'd, The devil was in arms;
All the whole army stood agaz'd on him;
His soldiers, spying his undaunted spirit,
A Talbot a Talbot! cried out amain,
And rush'd into the bowels of the battle.
Here had the conquest fully been seal'd up,
If Sir John Fastolfe had not play'd the coward;
He being in the vaward, (plac'd behind,
With purpose to relieve and follow them,)
Cowardly fled, not having struck one stroke :
and Hence grew the general wreck and massacre;
Enclosed were they with their enemies :


A base Walloon, to win the Dauphin's grace,

One would have ling'ring wars, with little cost; Thrust Talbot with a spear into the back;

There was a notion long prevalent, that life might

be taken away by metrical charms.

f Nurse was anciently so spelt.

Her, i . England's.

1. e. Their miseries have had only a ther intermission.

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