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History of King John

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Act III, Scene 3

The same.


[Alarums, excursions, retreat. Enter KING JOHN,] [p]QUEEN ELINOR, ARTHUR, the BASTARD, HUBERT, [p]and Lords]

  • King John. [To QUEEN ELINOR] So shall it be; your grace shall
    stay behind
    So strongly guarded.
    [To ARTHUR]
    Cousin, look not sad: 1300
    Thy grandam loves thee; and thy uncle will
    As dear be to thee as thy father was.
  • Arthur. O, this will make my mother die with grief!
  • King John. [To the BASTARD] Cousin, away for England!
    haste before: 1305
    And, ere our coming, see thou shake the bags
    Of hoarding abbots; imprisoned angels
    Set at liberty: the fat ribs of peace
    Must by the hungry now be fed upon:
    Use our commission in his utmost force. 1310
  • Philip the Bastard. Bell, book, and candle shall not drive me back,
    When gold and silver becks me to come on.
    I leave your highness. Grandam, I will pray,
    If ever I remember to be holy,
    For your fair safety; so, I kiss your hand. 1315

[Exit the BASTARD]

  • King John. Come hither, Hubert. O my gentle Hubert, 1320
    We owe thee much! within this wall of flesh
    There is a soul counts thee her creditor
    And with advantage means to pay thy love:
    And my good friend, thy voluntary oath
    Lives in this bosom, dearly cherished. 1325
    Give me thy hand. I had a thing to say,
    But I will fit it with some better time.
    By heaven, Hubert, I am almost ashamed
    To say what good respect I have of thee.
  • King John. Good friend, thou hast no cause to say so yet,
    But thou shalt have; and creep time ne'er so slow,
    Yet it shall come from me to do thee good.
    I had a thing to say, but let it go:
    The sun is in the heaven, and the proud day, 1335
    Attended with the pleasures of the world,
    Is all too wanton and too full of gawds
    To give me audience: if the midnight bell
    Did, with his iron tongue and brazen mouth,
    Sound on into the drowsy race of night; 1340
    If this same were a churchyard where we stand,
    And thou possessed with a thousand wrongs,
    Or if that surly spirit, melancholy,
    Had baked thy blood and made it heavy-thick,Which else runs tickling up and down the veins,
    Making that idiot, laughter, keep men's eyes 1345
    And strain their cheeks to idle merriment,
    A passion hateful to my purposes,
    Or if that thou couldst see me without eyes,
    Hear me without thine ears, and make reply
    Without a tongue, using conceit alone, 1350
    Without eyes, ears and harmful sound of words;
    Then, in despite of brooded watchful day,
    I would into thy bosom pour my thoughts:
    But, ah, I will not! yet I love thee well;
    And, by my troth, I think thou lovest me well. 1355
  • Hubert de Burgh. So well, that what you bid me undertake,
    Though that my death were adjunct to my act,
    By heaven, I would do it.
  • King John. Do not I know thou wouldst?
    Good Hubert, Hubert, Hubert, throw thine eye 1360
    On yon young boy: I'll tell thee what, my friend,
    He is a very serpent in my way;
    And whereso'er this foot of mine doth tread,
    He lies before me: dost thou understand me?
    Thou art his keeper. 1365
  • Hubert de Burgh. And I'll keep him so,
    That he shall not offend your majesty.
  • King John. Enough.
    I could be merry now. Hubert, I love thee;
    Well, I'll not say what I intend for thee:
    Remember. Madam, fare you well: 1375
    I'll send those powers o'er to your majesty.
  • King John. For England, cousin, go:
    Hubert shall be your man, attend on you
    With all true duty. On toward Calais, ho! 1380