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Jobr, to-ftop Arthur's Title in the whole,
SCENE, the French King's Pavilion. Enter Constance, Arthur, and Salisbury.
CONS TAN C B. ONE to be marryd ! gone to swear a peace !' G: False blood to false blood join'd! Gone to be
friends! Shall Lervis have Blanch, and Blanch those provinces? It is not so, thou hast mis-spoke, mis-heard ; Be well advis d, tell o'er thy tale again, It cannot be; thou doft 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 thée, man ; I have a King's oath to the contrary; Thou shalt be punish'd for thus frighting me, For I am fick, 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 doft thou look so sadly on my fon? 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 fighs confirmers of thy words? Then speak again, not all thy former tale, But this one word, whether thy tale be true.
Sal. As true, as, I believe, you think them false, That give you cause to prove my saying true.
Conf. Oh, if thou teach me to believe this forrowe, Teach thou this forrow how to make me die ; And let belief and life encounter so, As doth the fury of two 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 fight : This news hath made thee a most ugly inan.
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,
Arth. I do beseech you, mother, be content.
. If thou, that bidst me be content, wert grim,
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 ;
[Sits down on the Floor.
Enter bid Kings come bow to it.] I must here account for the Liberty I have taken to make a Change in the Division of the 2d and 3d A&ts. In the old Editions, the 2d Act was made to end here: tho' 'tis evident, Lady Constance here, in her Despair, seats herself on the Floor : and She must be supposed, as I formerly observ’d, immediately to rise again, only to go off and end the Art decently; or the flat Scene must shut her in from the Sight of the Audience, an Absurdity I cannot wish to accuse Sbakespeare of. Mr. Gildon and some other Criticks fancied, that a considerable Part of the 2d Aft was loft ; and that the Charm began here. I had joined in this Suspicion of a Scene or two being loft ; and unwittingly drew Mr. Pope into this Error. “ It seems to be so, says he, and it were
to be wish'd obe Restorer (meaning Me,) could supply ir.” To deserve this Great Man's Thanks, I'll venture at the Task ; and hope to convince my Readers, that nothing is loft ; but that I have supplied the suspected Chalm, only by rectifying the Division of the Ass. Upon looking a little more narrowly into the Corfitution of the Play, I am satisfied that the 3d Af ought to begin with that Scene, which has hitherto been accounted the Last of the 2d Axt: and my Reasons for it are there. The Match being concluded, in the Scene before That, betwixt the Dauphin and Blancb, a Messenger is sent for Lady Constance to K. Pbilip's Tent, for Her to come to St. Mary's Church to the Solemnity. The Princes all go out, as to the Marriage ; and the Bastard staying a little behind, to descant on Interest and Commodity, very properly ends the Aft. The next Scene then, in the French King's Tent, brings us Salisbury, delivering his Message to Conftance, who, refusing to go to the Solemnity, seis herself down on the floor. The whole Train returning from the Church to the French King's Pavi. ljon, Pbilip expresses such satissa Aion on Occasion of the happy Solemnity of that Day ; that Confiance rises from the Floor, a 5
Enter King John, King Philip, Lewis, Blanch, Elinor,
Faulconbridge, and Austria.
Conf. A więked day, and not an holy-day.-- [Rifing
K. Philip. By heaven; lady, you shall have no cause To curse the fair proceedings of this day: Have I not pawnd to you my Majefty?
Confit. You have beguil'd 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, and joins in the Scene by entring her Protest againft their joy, and curfing the Business of the Day. Thus, I conceive, the Scenes are fairly continued; and there is no Charm in the Ac. tion : but a proper Interval made both for Salisbury's coming to Lady Corftance, and for the Solemnization of the Marriage. Besides, as Faulconbridge is evidently the Poet's favourite Character; 'twas very well judg’d to close the Ad with his soliloquy