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A C T III.

SCENE I.

The French King's Pavilion.

Enter Constance, Arthur, and Salisbury.

CONSTANCE.

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ONE to be marry'd! gone to swear a peace !
False blood to false blood join'd! Gone to be

friends!
Shall Lewis have Blanch, and Blanch those provinces?
It is not so, thou haft mif-spoke, mis-heard ;
Be well advis'd, tello'er thy tale again,
It cannot be ; thou dost but say, 'tis fo.
I trust, I may not trust thee ; for thy word
Is but the vain breath of a common man :
Believe me, I do not believe thee, man;
I have a King's oath to the contrary.
Thou shalt be punish'd for thus frighting me,
For I am sick, and capable of fears ;
Oppreft with wrongs, and therefore full of fears:
A widow, husbandless, subject to fears ;
A woman, naturally born to fears,
And, tho' thou now confess thou didft but jest,
With my vext spirits I cannot take a truce,
But they will quake and tremble all this day.
What dost thou mean by shaking of thy head ?
Why dost thou look so sadly on my son?
What means that hand upon that breast of thine ?
Why holds thine eye that lamentable rheum,
Like a proud river peering o'er his bounds ?
Be these sad sighs confirmers of thy words?
Then speak again, not all thy former tale,
But this is one word, whether thy tale be true.
Sel. As true, as, I believe, you think them false,

That

That give you cause to prove my saying true.

Conft. Oh, if thou teach me to believe this sorrow, Teach thou this forrow how to make me die ; And let belief and life encounter so, As doth the fury of cwo desp'rate men, Which, in the very meeting, fall and die. Lewis wed Blanch! O boy, then where art thou? France friend with England! what becomes of me? Fellow, be gone, I cannot brook thy sight: This news hath made thee a most ugly man.

Sal. What other harm have I, good lady, done, But spoke the harm that is by others done?

Conft. Which harm within itself so heinous is, As it makes harmful all that speak of it.

Arth. I do beseech you, mother, be content.

Const. If thou, that bidit me be content, wert grim, Ugly, and Nand'rous to thy mother's womb, Full of unpleasing blors, and a sightless stains, Lame, foolish, crooked, swart, prodigious ', Patch'd with foul moles and eye-offending marks; I would not care, I then would be content : For then I should not love thee: no, nor thou Become thy great birth, nor deserve a crown. But thou art fair, and at thy birth, dear boy! Nature and fortune join’d to make thee great. Of nature's gifts thou may'st with lilies boait, And with the half-blown rose. But fortune, oh! She is corrupted, chang’d, and, won from thee, Adulterates hourly with thine uncle Johir ; And with her golden hand hath pluckt on France To tread down fair respect of sovereignty, And made his majesty the bawd to theirs. France is a bawd to fortune, and to John; That strumpet fortune, that usurping John!

2

fizhtless ] The poet

3 Prodigious ; that is, portentou!, ules fightless for that which we fo deformed as to be taken for a now exprefs by unsightly, dis- firetoken of evila agreeable to the eyes,

Tell

Ff 4

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Tell me, thou fellow, is not France forsworn ?
Envenom him with words; or get thee gone,
And leave these woes alone, which I alone
Am bound to under-bear.

Sal. Pardon me, Madam,
I
may not go without you to the Kings.
Const. Thou may'st, thou shalt, I will not go with

thee.
I will instruct my sorrows to be proud;
For Grief is proud, and makes his owner stout 4.
To me, and to the State of my great Grief',
Let Kings assemble: for my Grief's so great,
That no Supporter but the huge firm earth
Can hold it up: Here I and Sorrow fit:
Here is my Throne, bid Kings come bow to it.

[Sits down on the Floor,

SCENE

6

- make his owner fout.] nothing can be gained, and fearThe old editions have, makes its less to offend when there is noowner stoop; the emendation is thing further to be dreaded. Hanm r's,

Such was this writer's knowledge s To me, and to the State of my of the passions. great Grief,

bid Kings come bow Let Kings asjimble :

] In

to it.] I must here account Much ado about nothing, the fa- for the Liberty I have taken to ther of Hero, depresied by her make a Change in the Divifion disgrace, declares himself so fub- of the 2d and 3d Acts. In the dued by grief that a ibread muy old Editions, the 2d sat was lead him. How is it that grief made to end here; though 'tis in Leonato and lady Confiance, evident, Lady Constance here, in produces effects direétly opposite, her Despair, seats herself on the and yet both agreeable to nature. Floor: and the muft be supposed, Sorrow softens the mind while it as I formerly observed, immeis yet warmed by hope, but har- diately to rise again, only to go ders it when it is congealed by off and end the Azt decently; or despair. Daftress, while there that flat Scene must shut her in remains any prospect of relief, from the Sight of the Audience, is weak and flexible, but when an Absurdity I cannot wish to no fuccour remains, is fearless accuse Shakespeare of. Mr. Giland stubborn; angry alike at those den and some other Criticks fanthat injure, and at those that do cied, that a considerable Part of no: help; careless to please where the ad A&I was lost; and that the

Charm

S CE N E II. Enter King John, King Philip, Lewis, Blanch, Elinor,

Faulconbridge, and Austria.

K. Philip. 'Tis true, fair daughter ; and this blessed

day Ever in France shall be kept festival: To solemnize this day, the glorious sun? Stays in his course, and plays the aichymist; Turning with splendor of his precious eye Chasm began here. I had joined the French King's Tent, brings in this Suspicion of a Scene or us Salisbury deivering his Mettwo being loft; and unwittingly fage to Confiance, who, refusing drew Mr. Pope into this Error. to go to the Solemnity, fets herIt seems to be to, says he, and self down on the floor. The it were to be with'd the Re. whole Train returning from the ftorer ( meaning Me, I could supo Church to the French King's Paply it." To deserve this Great vilion, Philip expreffes fuch SaMan's Thanks, I'll venture at tisfaction on Occasion of the the Task; and hope to convince happy Solemnity of that Day, my Readers, that nothing is loft; that Constancerises from the Floor, but that I have supplied the suf- and joins in the Scene by entring pected Charm, only by rectifying her Protest again!t their Joy, and the Division of the Ass. Upon cursing the Business of the Day. looking a little more narrowly Thus, I conceive, the Scenes are into the Constitution of the Play, fairly continued; and there is no I am fatisfied that the 3d A& Chasm in the Action: but a proought to begin with that Scene, per Interval made both for Sawhich has hither:o been accounted lisbury's coming to Lady Conthe last of the ad Aci: and my fiance, and for the Solemnization Reasons for it are these. The of the Marriage. Besides, as Match being concluded, in the Faulconbridge is evidently the Scene before that, betwixt the Poet's favourite Character, 'twas Dauphin and Blanch, a Mef- very well judg’d to close the Act senger is sent for Lady Constance with his Soliloquy. THEOBALD. to K. Philip's Tent. for her to This whole note seems judicicome to S. Mary's Church to the ous enough ; but Mr. Theobald Solemnity. The Princes all go forgets that there were, in Shakeout, as to the Marriage; and the speare's time, no moveable scenes. Boftard staying a litile behind, to descant on Interest and Com ? From this passage Rowe seems modity, very properly ends the to have borrowed the first lines 4a. The next Scene then, in of his Fair Peniient.

The

The meagre cloddy earth to glitt’ring gold.
The yearly course, that brings this day about,
Shall never see it, but a holy-day:
Const. A wicked day, and not an holy-day.-

[Rising
What hath this day defervid? what hath it done,
That it in golden letter should be set
Among the high tides in the kalendar ?
Nay, rather turn this day out of the week,
This day of shame, oppreliion, perjury:
Or, if it inult stand still, let wives with child
Pray, that their burthens may not fall this day,
Left that their hopes prodigiously be crost:
But on this day $, let seamen fear no wreck ;
No bargains break, that are not this day made ;
This day, all things begun come to ill end,
Yea, faith itself to hollow falshood change !

K. Philip. By heaven, lady you shall have no cause To curle the fair proceedings of this day : Have I not pawn'd to you my majesty ?

Conft. You have beguild me with a counterfeit Resembling Majesty, which, touch'd and try'd, Proves valueless: you are forsworn, forsworn, You came in arms to spill my enemies blood', But now in arms, you strengthen it with yours. The grappling vigour, and rough frown of war, Is cold in amity and painted peace, And our oppreffion hath made up this league : Arm, arm, ye heav'ns, against these perjur'd Kings : A widow cries, be husband to me, heav'n! Let not the hours of this ungodly day Wear out the day in peace; but ere sun-set, 8 But on this day,

-] That it with yours.) I am afraid is, except on this day.

here is a clinch intended; You 9 You came in arms 10 Spill my came in war 10 destroy my enemies, enemies' biood,

but now you firengthen them in But now in arms, you strengthen embraces.

Set

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