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To make a faithless error in your ears :
K. Phi. When I have said, make answer to us both.
that duty, which you truly owe, To him that owes it ;' namely, this young prince: And then our arms, like to a muzzled bear, Save in aspect, have all offence feal'd up; Our cannons' malice vainly shall be spent Against the invulnerable clouds of heaven; And, with a blessed and unvex'd retire, With unhack'd swords, and helmets all unbruis'd, We will bear home that lusty blood again, Which here we came to spout against your town, And leave your children, wives, and
peace. But if you fondly pass our proffer'd offer,
* Forwaaried-] i. e. worn out. Sax. So, Chaucer, in his Remaunt of the Roje, speaking of the mantle of Avarice:
" And if it were forwerid, she
“ Would havin," &c. STEEVENS. 5 To him that owes it ;] i, e, owns it. See our author and his contemporaries, pafiim. So, in Othello :
that sweet seep
'Tis not the roundure + of your old-fac'd walls
K. John. Acknowledge then the king, and let
į Cir. That can we not: but he that
the king, To him will we prove loyal; till that time, Have we ramm'd up our gates against the world. K. John. Doth not the crown of England prove
the king? And, if not that, I bring you witnesses, Twice fifteen thousand hearts of England's breed,
BAST. Bastards, and else,
4 Tis not the roundure, &c.] Roundure means the same as the French rondeur, i. e. the circle. So, in All's loft by Lust, a tragedy by Rowley, 1633:
will she meet our arms
all things rare,
K. Pui. Stand in his face, to contradict his claim. i Cır. Till you compound whose right is worthielt, We, for the worthiest, hold the right from both. K. John. Then God forgive the fin of all those
souls, That to their everlasting residence, Before the dew of evening fall, shall fleet, In dreadful trial of our kingdom's king! K. Phi. Amen, Amen!-Mount, chevaliers ! to
arms ! Bast. St. George,-that swing'd the dragon, and
e'er since, Sits on his horseback at mine hostess' door, Teach us some fence!-Sirrah, were I at home, At your den, firrah,[To Austria.] with your lioness, I'd set an ox-head to your lion's hide, And make a monster of you. Aust.
Peace; no more. BAST. O, tremble; for you hear the lion roar. K. John. Up higher to the plain ; where we'll
set forth, In best appointment, all our regiments. Bast. Speed then, to take advantage of the
field. K. Pui. It shall be so ;-[To Lewis.] and at the
other hill Command the rest to stand.-God, and our right!
3 I'd fet an ox-head to your lion's hid.,] So, in the old spurious play of K. John :
“ But let the frolick Frenchman take no scorn,
Alarums and Excursions ; then a Retreat. Enter a
French Herald, with trumpets, to the gates.
F. Her. You men of Angiers, open wide your
Enter an English Herald, with trumpets.
6 You men of Angiers, &c.] This speech is very poetical and smooth, and except the conceit of the widow's husband embracing the earth, is juft and beautiful. Johnson.
7 Rejoice, you men of Angiers, &c.] The English herald falls somewhat below his antagonist. Silver armour gilt with blood is a poor image. Yet our author has it again in Macbeth:
Here lay Duncan,
behold, From first to last, the onset and retire Of both your armies; whose equality By our best eyes cannot be censured : 2 Blood hath bought blood, and blows have answer'd
blows; Strength match'd with strength, and power con
fronted power : Both are alike; and both alike we like. One must prove greatest: while they weigh so even, We hold our town for neither; yet for both.
8 And, like a jolly troop of huntsmen, &c.] It was, I think, one the savage practices of the chase, for all to stain their hands in the blood of the deer, as a trophy. Johnson. Shakspeare alludes to the same practise in Julius Cæfar:
- Here thy hunters stand,
STEEVENS. 9 Heralds, from off, &c.] These three speeches seem to have been laboured. The citizen's is the best; yei both alike we like is a poor gingle. JOHNSON.
i-cannot be censured:] i. e. cannot be estimated. Our author ought rather to have written—whose superiority, or whose inequality, cannot be censured. Malone. So, in King Henry VI. Part I:
“ If you do cenfure me by what you were,
“ Not what you are." STEVENS. Vol. VIII.