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English Lords.

PRINCE HENRY, Son to the King.
ARTHUR, Duke of Bretagne, and Nephew to the King.
Earl of PEMBROKE, William Marshall.
Earl of ESSEX, Jeffrey Fitzpeter, Chief Justice of England.
Earl of SALISBURY, William Longsword, son to

Henry II. by Rosamond Clifford.
BIGOT, Roger, Earl of Norfolk and Suffolk.
FAULCONBRIDGE, Bastard Son to Richard the First,
ROBERT FAULCONBRIDGE, Half Brother to the Bastard.
PETER of POMFRET, a Prophet.
PHILIP, King of France.
LEWIS, the Dauphin.
CARDINAL PANDULPHO, the Pope's Legate.
MELUN, a French Lord.
CHATILLON, Ambassador from France to KING JOHN.
ELINOR, Queen-Mother of England.
BLANCH, Daughter to Alphonso King of Caftile, and Niece

to KING JOHN. LADY FAULCONBRIDGE, Mother to the Baftard, and

ROBERT FAULCONBRIDGE. Citizens of Angiers, Heralds, Executioners, Messengers, Sol

diers, and other Attendants. The SCENE-Sometimes in ENGLAND ; and sometimes in


This Play, written about the year 1596, is founded on the British Chroniclers, whom our Author follows closely, not only in the detail of facts, but sometimes in the very expressions. The action of it begins at the 34th year of the King's life, and comprehends an interval of about seventeen years. There is an old play in two parts by C. Marlow, of the same title, to which Shakspeare is somewhat indebted.



ACT 1.


Northampton. A Room of State in the Palace. Enter King John, Queen Elinor, Pembroke, Essex, and Salif

bury, with Chatillon. K. John. Now, say, Chatillon, what would France

with us? 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,
Arthur Plantagent, lays moft lawful claim
To this fair island, and the territories;
To Ireland, Poiệtiers, Anjou, Touraine, Maine :
Defiring thee to lay aside the sword,
Which sways usurpingly these several titles ;

put the same into young Arthur's hand, Thy nephew, and right royal sovereign.

K. John. What follows, if we disallow of this?


In my behaviour,]-In the character, or manner I here affume; in my address as his ambassador.


Chat. The proud controul of fierce and bloody war, To inforce these rights so forcibly withheld.

K. John. Here have we war for war, and blood for blood, Controulment for cantroulment; so answer France.

Chat. Then take my king's defiance from my mouth, The farthest limit of my embally. :

K. John. Bear mine to him, and so depart in peace: Be thou as lightning in the eyes of France ; For ere thou canft 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 Chat, and Pem. Eli. 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 manage of two kingdoms must With fearful bloody issue arbitrate.

K. John. Our strong possession, and our right, for us.

Eli. Your strong poffeffion, much more than your right; Or else it must go wrong


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 Efex.

Essex. My liege, here is the strangest controversy,
Come from the country to be judg’d by you,
That e'er 1 heard : Shall I produce the men ?

controul]-oppofition, hostility; constraint, compulfion. Which now the manage, &c.]-Which now must be brought to a bloody iffue by the exertions of two contending kingdoms.

K. Jobn.

K. John. Let them approach. [Exit Sheriff Our abbies, and our priories, shall pay Re-enter Sheriff with Robert Faulconbridge, and Pbilip, bis


This expedition's charge.—What men are you?

Pbil. Your faithful subject I, a gentleman,
Born in Northamptonshire; and eldest son,
As I suppose, to Robert Faulconbridge;.
A foldier, by the honour-giving hand
Of Cour-de-lion knighted in the field.

K. John. What art thou ?
Rob. The son and heir to that same Faulconbridge,

K. Jobn. Is that the elder, and art thou the heir ?
You came not of one mother then, it seems.

Phil. 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,

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.

Pbil. 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

Doch he lay claim to thine inheritance?

Phil. I know not why, except to get the land.
But once he Nander'd me with bastardy:
But whe'r 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 fir Robert, father, on my knee
I give heaven thanks, I was not like to thee.
K. Jobn. Why, what a mad-cap hath heaven lent us

Eli. He hath da 'trick of Caur-de-lion's face,
The accent of his tongue affecteth him :
Do you not read some tokens of


son In the large composition of this man?

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?

Pbil. 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!

Rob. My gracious liege, when that my father livid, , Your brother did employ my father much ;

Phil. Well, sir, by this you cannot get my land; Your tale must be, how he employ'd my

Rob. And once dispatch'd him on 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 ;
Where how he did prevail, I shame to speak :

da trick]—the air or fashion; striking resemblance, or such pecu. liarity of feature as the flightest outline may exhibit.

ALL's Weli that Ends WELL, Vol. II. p. 371. Hil. balf-fai'd groar ]-which bore the king's head in profile---alluding to Robert's meagre visage.


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