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Arth. Then Arthur yeeld, death frowneth in thy face,
What meaneth this? good Hubert pleade the case.
Hubert. Patience yong lord, and listen words of woe,
Harmefull and harsh, hells horror to be heard:
A dismall tale fit for a furies tongue.
I faint to tell, deepe sorrow is the found.
Arthur. What, must I die?:
Hubert. No newes of death, but tidings of more hate,
A wrathfull doome, and most vnluckie fate :
Deaths dish were daintie at so fell a feast,
Be deafe, heare not, its hell to tell the rest.
Arthur. Alas, thou wrongst my youth with words of feare,
Tis hell, tis horror, not for one to heare :
What is it man if it must needes be done,
Act it, and end it, that the paine were gone.
Hubert. I will not chaunt such dolour with my tongue,
Yet must I act the outrage with my hand.
My heart, my head, and all my powers beside,
To aide the office haue at once denide.
Peruse this letter, lines of trebble woe,
Reade ore my charge, and pardon when you know.
Hubert, these are to commaund thee, as thou tendrest our
quiet in minde, and the estate of our perfon, that presently vpon the receipt of our commaund, thou put out the eies of Arthur Plantaginet.
Arthur. Ah monstrous damned man! his very breath in
fects the elements.
Contagious venome dwelleth in his heart,
Effecting meanes to poyson all the world.
Vnreuerent may I be to blame the heauens
Of great iniustice, that the miscreant
Liues to oppresse the innocents with wrong.
Ah Hubert ! makes he thee his instrument,
To sound the trump that causeth hell triumph?
Heauen weepes, the saints do shed celestiall teares,
They feare thy fall, and cite thee with remorse,
They knocke thy conscience, mouing pitie there,
Willing to fence thee from the rage of hell;
Hell Hubert, trust me all the plagues of hell
Hangs on performance of this damned deed.
This seale, the warrant of the bodies blisle,
Ensureth satan chieftaine of thy foule :
Subscribe not Hubert, giue not Gods part away.
I speake not only for eies priuiledge,
The chiefe exterior that I would enioy :
But for thy perill, farre beyond my paine,
Thy sweete soules losse, more than my eies vaine lacke :
A cause internall, and eternall too.
Aduise thce Hubert, for the case is hard,
To loose faluation for a kings reward.
Hubert. My lord, a subiect dwelling in the land
Is tied to execute the kings commaund.
Arthur. Yet God commaunds whose power reacheth further, That no command should stand in force to murther.
Hubert. But that same essence hath ordaind a law,
A death for guilt, to keepe the world in awe.
Arthur. I pleade, not guilty, treasonlese and free.
Hubert. But that appeale my lord concernes not me.
Arthur. Why thou art he that maist omit the perill.
Hubert. I, if my foueraigne would omit his quarrell.
Arthur. His quarrell is vnhallowed false and wrong.
Hubert. Then be the blame to whom it doth belong.
Arthur. Why thats to thee if thou as they proceede,
Conclude their iudgement with so vile a deede.
Hubert. Why then no execution can be lawfull, If iudges doomes must be reputed doubtfull.
Arthur. Yes where in forme of law in place and time,
The offender is convicted of the crime.
Hubert. My lord, my lord, this long expostulation,
Heapes vp more griefe, than promise of redresse;
For this I know, and so resolude I end,
That subiects liues on kings commands depend.
got reason why he is your foe,
But do his charge fince he commaunds it so.
Arthur. Then do thy charge, and charged be thy foule
With wrongfull persecution done this day.
You rowling eyes, whose superficies yet
Idve behold with eies that nature lent :
Send foorth the terror of your moouers frowne,
To wreake my wrong vpon the murthercrs
That rob me of your faire reflecting view :
Let hell to them (as earth they wish to me)
Be darke and direfull guerdon for their guilt,
And let the blacke tormenters of deepe Tartary
Vpbraide them with this damned enterprise,
Inflicting change of tortures on their foules.
Delay not Hubert, my orisons are ended,
Begin I pray thee, reaue me of my fight :
But to performe a tragedie indeede,
Conclude the period with a mortall stab.
Constance farewell, tormenter come away,
Make my dispatch the tyrants feasting day.
Hubert. I faint, I feare, my conscience bids desist :
Faint did I say? feare was it that I named :
My king commaunds, that warrant sets me free:
But God forbids, and he commaundeth kings,
That great commaunder countercheckes my charge,
He stages my hand, he maketh soft my heart.
Goe cursed tooles, your office is exempt,
Cheere thee yong lord, thou shalt not loose an eie,
Though I should purchase it with lose of life.
Ile to the king, and say his will is done,
And of the langor tell him thou art dead,
Goe in with me, for Hubert was not borne
To blinde those lampes that nature pollisht so.
Arthur. Hubert, if euer Arthur be in state,
Looke for amends of this receiúed gift,
I took my eiesight by thy curtesie,
Thou lentst them me, I will not be ingrate.
But now procrastination may offend
The issue that thy kindnesse vndertakes :
Depart we Hubert to preuent the worst.
Enter K. Iohn, Esex, Salisbury, Penbrooke.
Ichn. Now warlike followers, resteth aught vndone
That may impeach vs of fond ouersight?
The French haue felt the temper of our swords,
Cold terror keepes possession in their soules,
Checking their ouerdaring arrogance
For buckling with so great an ouermatch,
The arch prowd titled priest of Italy,
That calls himselfe grand vicar under God,
Is busied now with trentall obsequies,
Malle and months mind, dirge and I know not what,
To ease their soules in painefull purgatorie,
That have miscarried in these bloody warres.
Heard you not lords when first his holinelle
Had tidings of our small account of him,
How with a taunt vaunting upon his toes,
He vrgde a reason why the Englibale
Difdaind the blerred ordinance of Rome?
The title. (reuerently might I inferre)
Became the kings that earst haue borne the load,
The slauish weight of that controlling priest :
Who at his pleasure temperd them like waxe
To carrie armes on danger of his curse,
Banding their foules with warrants of his hand.
I grieue to thinke how kings in ages past
(Simply deuoted to the sea of Rome)
Haue run into a thousand acts of shame.
But now for confirmation of our state,
Sith we haue proind the more than needfull braunch
That did oppresse the true well-growing stocke,
It resteth we throughout our territories
Be reproclaimed and inuested king.
Pemb. My liege, that were to busie men with doubts,
Once were you crownd, proclaimd, and with applause
Your citie streets haue ecchoed to the eare,
God faue the king, God faue our foueraigne Iobn,
Pardon my feare, my censure doth inferre
Your highnesse not deposde from regall state,
Would breed a mutinie in peoples mindes,
What it should meane to haue you crownd againe.
lohn. Pembrooke, performe what I haue bid thee do,
Thou knowst not what induceth me to this.
Esex goe in, and lordings all be gone
About this taske, I will be crownd anone.
Enter the Bastard.
Philip what newes, how do the abbots chests?
Are friers fatter than the nunnes are faire ?
What cheere with church-men, had they gold or no?
Tell me, how hath thy office took effect?
Phil. My lord, I haue performd your highnes charge :
The ease-bred abbots, and the bare foote friers,