Henry VI, Part 1

Introduction by Janis Lull
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On sale Dec 01, 2000 | 176 Pages | 978-0-14-071465-4
The acclaimed Pelican Shakespeare series edited by A. R. Braunmuller and Stephen Orgel
 
The legendary Pelican Shakespeare series features authoritative and meticulously researched texts paired with scholarship by renowned Shakespeareans. Each book includes an essay on the theatrical world of Shakespeare’s time, an introduction to the individual play, and a detailed note on the text used. Updated by general editors Stephen Orgel and A. R. Braunmuller, these easy-to-read editions incorporate over thirty years of Shakespeare scholarship undertaken since the original series, edited by Alfred Harbage, appeared between 1956 and 1967. With definitive texts and illuminating essays, the Pelican Shakespeare will remain a valued resource for students, teachers, and theater professionals for many years to come.
 
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
The First Part of Henry the Sixth

¥    I.1 Dead march. Enter the funeral of King Henry the Fifth, attended on by the Duke of Bedford, Humphrey Duke of Gloucester, the Duke of Exeter, the Earl of Warwick, the Bishop of Winchester, and the Duke of Somerset.

bedford

Hung be the heavens with black! Yield, day, to night!

Comets, importing change of times and states,

2

Brandish your crystal tresses in the sky,

And with them scourge the bad revolting stars

4

That have consented unto Henry's death-

King Henry the Fifth, too famous to live long.

England ne'er lost a king of so much worth.

gloucester

England ne'er had a king until his time.

Virtue he had, deserving to command.

9

His brandished sword did blind men with his beams.

10

His arms spread wider than a dragon's wings.

His sparkling eyes, replete with wrathful fire,

More dazzled and drove back his enemies

Than midday sun, fierce bent against their faces.

What should I say? His deeds exceed all speech.

He ne'er lift up his hand but conquerd.

16

exeter

We mourn in black; why mourn we not in blood?

17

Henry is dead, and never shall revive.

Upon a wooden coffin we attend,

And death's dishonorable victory

20

We with our stately presence glorify,

Like captives bound to a triumphant car.

22

What, shall we curse the planets of mishap,

That plotted thus our glory's overthrow?

Or shall we think the subtle-witted French

Conjurers and sorcerers, that, afraid of him,

By magic verses have contrived his end?

bishop of winchester

He was a king blessed of the King of Kings.

Unto the French, the dreadful judgment day

So dreadful will not be as was his sight.

30

The battles of the Lord of Hosts he fought.

The church's prayers made him so prosperous.

32

gloucester

The church? Where is it? Had not churchmen prayed,

33

His thread of life had not so soon decayed.

None do you like but an effeminate prince,

Whom like a schoolboy you may overawe.

bishop of winchester

Gloucester, whate'er we like, thou art Protector,

And lookest to command the prince and realm.

Thy wife is proud: she holdeth thee in awe,

39

More than God or religious churchmen may.

40

gloucester

Name not religion, for thou lov'st the flesh,

And ne'er throughout the year to church thou go'st,

Except it be to pray against thy foes.

bedford

Cease, cease these jars, and rest your minds in peace.

44

Let's to the altar. Heralds, wait on us.

Exeunt Warwick, Somerset, and Heralds with coffin.

Instead of gold, we'll offer up our arms-

46

Since arms avail not, now that Henry's dead.

Posterity, await for wretched years,

48

When, at their mothers' moistened eyes, babes shall suck,

Our isle be made a marish of salt tears,

50

And none but women left to wail the dead.

Henry the Fifth, thy ghost I invocate:

Prosper this realm; keep it from civil broils;

53

Combat with adverse planets in the heavens.

A far more glorious star thy soul will make

Than Julius Caesar or bright-

Enter a Messenger.

messenger

My honorable lords, health to you all.

Sad tidings bring I to you out of France,

Of loss, of slaughter, and discomfiture.

Guyenne, Compigne, Rouen, Rheims, OrlŽans,

60

Paris, Gisors, Poitiers are all quite lost.

bedford

What sayst thou, man, before dead Henry's corpse?

Speak softly, or the loss of those great towns

Will make him burst his lead and rise from death.

64

gloucester To the Messenger

Is Paris lost? Is Rouen yielded up?

If Henry were recalled to life again,

These news would cause him once more yield the ghost.

exeter To the Messenger

How were they lost? What treachery was used?

messenger

No treachery, but want of men and money.

Amongst the soldiers this is mutterd:

70

That here you maintain several factions,

And whilst a field should be dispatched and fought,

72

You are disputing of your generals.

73

One would have ling'ring wars, with little cost;

Another would fly swift, but wanteth wings;

75

A third thinks, without expense at all,

By guileful fair words peace may be obtained.

Awake, awake, English nobility!

Let not sloth dim your honors new-begot.

Cropped are the flower-de-luces in your arms;

80

Of England's coat, one half is cut away.Exit.

exeter

Were our tears wanting to this funeral,

82

These tidings would call forth her flowing tides.

83

bedford

Me they concern; Regent I am of France.

Give me my steeld coat. I'll fight for France.

Away with these disgraceful wailing robes!

He removes his mourning robe.

Wounds will I lend the French, instead of eyes,

87

To weep their intermissive miseries.

88

Enter to them another Messenger, with letters.

second messenger

Lords, view these letters, full of bad mischance.

France is revolted from the English quite,

90

Except some petty towns of no import.

The Dauphin Charles is crownd king in Rheims;

The Bastard of OrlŽans with him is joined;

RenŽ, Duke of Anjou, doth take his part;

The Duke of Alenon flieth to his side.Exit.

exeter

The dauphin crownd king? All fly to him?

O, whither shall we fly from this reproach?

gloucester

We will not fly, but to our enemies' throats.

Bedford, if thou be slack, I'll fight it out.

bedford

Gloucester, why doubt'st thou of my forwardness?

100

An army have I mustered in my thoughts,

Wherewith already France is overrun.

Enter another Messenger.

third messenger

My gracious lords, to add to your laments,

Wherewith you now bedew King Henry's hearse,

I must inform you of a dismal fight

105

Betwixt the stout Lord Talbot and the French.

106

bishop of winchester

What, wherein Talbot overcame-is't so?

third messenger

O no, wherein Lord Talbot was o'erthrown.

The circumstance I'll tell you more at large.

109

The tenth of August last, this dreadful lord,

110

Retiring from the siege of OrlŽans,

Having full scarce six thousand in his troop,

112

By three and twenty thousand of the French

Was round encompassd and set upon.

No leisure had he to enrank his men.

He wanted pikes to set before his archers-

116

Instead whereof, sharp stakes plucked out of hedges

They pitchd in the ground confusdly,

To keep the horsemen off from breaking in.

More than three hours the fight continud,

120

Where valiant Talbot above human thought

Enacted wonders with his sword and lance.

Hundreds he sent to hell, and none durst stand him;

123

Here, there, and everywhere, enraged he slew.

The French exclaimed the devil was in arms:

All the whole army stood agazed on him.

126

His soldiers, spying his undaunted spirit,

"A Talbot! A Talbot!" cried out amain,

128

And rushed into the bowels of the battle.

Here had the conquest fully been sealed up,

130

If Sir John Fastolf had not played the coward.

131

He, being in the vanguard placed behind,

132

With purpose to relieve and follow them,

Cowardly fled, not having struck one stroke.

Hence grew the general wrack and massacre.

135

Enclosd were they with their enemies.

136

A base Walloon, to win the dauphin's grace,

137

Thrust Talbot with a spear into the back-

Whom all France, with their chief assembled strength,

Durst not presume to look once in the face.

140

bedford

Is Talbot slain then? I will slay myself,

For living idly here in pomp and ease

Whilst such a worthy leader, wanting aid,

Unto his dastard foemen is betrayed.

third messenger

O no, he lives, but is took prisoner,

And Lord Scales with him, and Lord Hungerford;

Most of the rest slaughtered, or took likewise.

bedford

His ransom there is none but I shall pay.

148

I'll hale the dauphin headlong from his throne;

His crown shall be the ransom of my friend.

150

Four of their lords I'll change for one of ours.

151

Farewell, my masters; to my task will I.

Bonfires in France forthwith I am to make,

To keep our great Saint George's feast withal.

154

Ten thousand soldiers with me I will take,

Whose bloody deeds shall make all Europe quake.

third messenger

So you had need. Fore OrlŽans, besieged,

The English army is grown weak and faint.

The Earl of Salisbury craveth supply,

159

And hardly keeps his men from mutiny,

160

Since they, so few, watch such a multitude.Exit.

exeter

Remember, lords, your oaths to Henry sworn:

Either to quell the dauphin utterly,

Or bring him in obedience to your yoke.

bedford

I do remember it, and here take my leave

To go about my preparation.Exit.

gloucester

I'll to the Tower with all the haste I can,

167

To view th' artillery and munition,

And then I will proclaim young Henry king. Exit.

exeter

To Eltham will I, where the young king is,

170

Being ordained his special governor,

And for his safety there I'll best devise.Exit.

bishop of winchester

Each hath his place and function to attend;

I am left out; for me, nothing remains.

But long I will not be jack out of office.

The king from Eltham I intend to steal,

And sit at chiefest stern of public weal.Exit.

177

*

¥    I.2 Sound a flourish. Enter Charles the Dauphin, the Duke of Alenon, and RenŽ Duke of Anjou, marching with Drummer and Soldiers.

charles

Mars his true moving-even as in the heavens,

1

So in the earth-to this day is not known.

Late did he shine upon the English side;

3

Now we are victors: upon us he smiles.

What towns of any moment but we have?

5

At pleasure here we lie near OrlŽans

Otherwhiles the famished English, like pale ghosts,

7

Faintly besiege us one hour in a month.

alenon

They want their porridge and their fat bull beeves.

9

Either they must be dieted like mules,

10

And have their provender tied to their mouths,

Or piteous they will look, like drownd mice.

renŽ

Let's raise the siege. Why live we idly here?

13

Talbot is taken, whom we wont to fear.

14

Remaineth none but mad-brained Salisbury,

And he may well in fretting spend his gall:

16

Nor men nor money hath he to make war.

17

charles

Sound, sound, alarum! We will rush on them.

18

Now for the honor of the forlorn French,

Him I forgive my death that killeth me

20

When he sees me go back one foot or flee.Exeunt.

*

¥    I.3 Here alarum. The French are beaten back by the English with great loss. Enter Charles the Dauphin, the Duke of Alenon, and RenŽ Duke of Anjou.

charles

Who ever saw the like? What men have I?

Dogs, cowards, dastards! I would ne'er have fled,

But that they left me 'midst my enemies.

renŽ

Salisbury is a desperate homicide.

He fighteth as one weary of his life.

The other lords, like lions wanting food,

Do rush upon us as their hungry prey.

7

alenon

Froissart, a countryman of ours, records

8

England all Olivers and Rolands bred

9

During the time Edward the Third did reign.

10

More truly now may this be verified,

For none but Samsons and Goliases

12

It sendeth forth to skirmish. One to ten?

Lean raw-boned rascals, who would e'er suppose

14

They had such courage and audacity?

charles

Let's leave this town, for they are harebrained slaves,

And hunger will enforce them to be more eager.

17

Of old I know them: rather with their teeth

The walls they'll tear down, than forsake the siege.

renŽ

I think by some odd gimmers or device

20

Their arms are set, like clocks, still to strike on,

21

Else ne'er could they hold out so as they do.

By my consent we'll even let them alone.

alenon

Be it so.

Enter the Bastard of OrlŽans.

bastard

Where's the Prince Dauphin? I have news for him.

charles

Bastard of OrlŽans, thrice welcome to us.

bastard

Methinks your looks are sad, your cheer appalled.

27

Hath the late overthrow wrought this offense?

Be not dismayed, for succor is at hand.

A holy maid hither with me I bring,

30

Which, by a vision sent to her from heaven,

Ordaind is to raise this tedious siege

And drive the English forth the bounds of France.

The spirit of deep prophecy she hath,

Exceeding the nine sibyls of old Rome.

35

What's past and what's to come she can descry.

Speak: shall I call her in? Believe my words,

For they are certain and unfallible.

charles

Go call her in.Exit Bastard.

        But first, to try her skill,

RenŽ stand thou as dauphin in my place.

40

Question her proudly; let thy looks be stern.

By this means shall we sound what skill she hath.

42

Enter the Bastard of OrlŽans with Joan la Pucelle, armed.

renŽ As Charles

Fair maid, is't thou wilt do these wondrous feats?

joan

RenŽ, is't thou that thinkest to beguile me?

Where is the dauphin? (To Charles) Come, come from behind.

I know thee well, though never seen before.

Be not amazed. There's nothing hid from me.

In private will I talk with thee apart.

Stand back you lords, and give us leave awhile.

RenŽ, Alenon, and Bastard stand apart.

renŽ To Alenon and Bastard

She takes upon her bravely, at first dash.

50

joan

Dauphin, I am by birth a shepherd's daughter,

My wit untrained in any kind of art.

Heaven and our Lady gracious hath it pleased

53

To shine on my contemptible estate.

Lo, whilst I waited on my tender lambs,

And to sun's parching heat displayed my cheeks,

God's mother deignd to appear to me,

And in a vision, full of majesty,

Willed me to leave my base vocation

And free my country from calamity.

60

Her aid she promised, and assured success.

In complete glory she revealed herself-

And whereas I was black and swart before,

63

With those clear rays which she infused on me

64

That beauty am I blessed with, which you may see.

Ask me what question thou canst possible,

And I will answer unpremeditated.

My courage try by combat, if thou dar'st,

And thou shalt find that I exceed my sex.

Resolve on this: thou shalt be fortunate,

70

If thou receive me for thy warlike mate.

71

charles

Thou hast astonished me with thy high terms.

72

Only this proof I'll of thy valor make:

73

In single combat thou shalt buckle with me.

74

An if thou vanquishest, thy words are true;

75

Otherwise, I renounce all confidence.

76

joan

I am prepared. Here is my keen-edged sword,

Decked with five flower-de-luces on each side-

The which at Touraine, in Saint Katherine's churchyard,

Out of a great deal of old iron I chose forth.

80

charles

Then come a God's name. I fear no woman.

81

joan

And while I live, I'll ne'er fly from a man.

Here they fight, and Joan la Pucelle overcomes.
William Shakespeare (1564–1616) was a poet, playwright, and actor who is widely regarded as one of the most influential writers in the history of the English language. Often referred to as the Bard of Avon, Shakespeare's vast body of work includes comedic, tragic, and historical plays; poems; and 154 sonnets. His dramatic works have been translated into every major language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright. View titles by William Shakespeare

About

The acclaimed Pelican Shakespeare series edited by A. R. Braunmuller and Stephen Orgel
 
The legendary Pelican Shakespeare series features authoritative and meticulously researched texts paired with scholarship by renowned Shakespeareans. Each book includes an essay on the theatrical world of Shakespeare’s time, an introduction to the individual play, and a detailed note on the text used. Updated by general editors Stephen Orgel and A. R. Braunmuller, these easy-to-read editions incorporate over thirty years of Shakespeare scholarship undertaken since the original series, edited by Alfred Harbage, appeared between 1956 and 1967. With definitive texts and illuminating essays, the Pelican Shakespeare will remain a valued resource for students, teachers, and theater professionals for many years to come.
 
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

Excerpt

The First Part of Henry the Sixth

¥    I.1 Dead march. Enter the funeral of King Henry the Fifth, attended on by the Duke of Bedford, Humphrey Duke of Gloucester, the Duke of Exeter, the Earl of Warwick, the Bishop of Winchester, and the Duke of Somerset.

bedford

Hung be the heavens with black! Yield, day, to night!

Comets, importing change of times and states,

2

Brandish your crystal tresses in the sky,

And with them scourge the bad revolting stars

4

That have consented unto Henry's death-

King Henry the Fifth, too famous to live long.

England ne'er lost a king of so much worth.

gloucester

England ne'er had a king until his time.

Virtue he had, deserving to command.

9

His brandished sword did blind men with his beams.

10

His arms spread wider than a dragon's wings.

His sparkling eyes, replete with wrathful fire,

More dazzled and drove back his enemies

Than midday sun, fierce bent against their faces.

What should I say? His deeds exceed all speech.

He ne'er lift up his hand but conquerd.

16

exeter

We mourn in black; why mourn we not in blood?

17

Henry is dead, and never shall revive.

Upon a wooden coffin we attend,

And death's dishonorable victory

20

We with our stately presence glorify,

Like captives bound to a triumphant car.

22

What, shall we curse the planets of mishap,

That plotted thus our glory's overthrow?

Or shall we think the subtle-witted French

Conjurers and sorcerers, that, afraid of him,

By magic verses have contrived his end?

bishop of winchester

He was a king blessed of the King of Kings.

Unto the French, the dreadful judgment day

So dreadful will not be as was his sight.

30

The battles of the Lord of Hosts he fought.

The church's prayers made him so prosperous.

32

gloucester

The church? Where is it? Had not churchmen prayed,

33

His thread of life had not so soon decayed.

None do you like but an effeminate prince,

Whom like a schoolboy you may overawe.

bishop of winchester

Gloucester, whate'er we like, thou art Protector,

And lookest to command the prince and realm.

Thy wife is proud: she holdeth thee in awe,

39

More than God or religious churchmen may.

40

gloucester

Name not religion, for thou lov'st the flesh,

And ne'er throughout the year to church thou go'st,

Except it be to pray against thy foes.

bedford

Cease, cease these jars, and rest your minds in peace.

44

Let's to the altar. Heralds, wait on us.

Exeunt Warwick, Somerset, and Heralds with coffin.

Instead of gold, we'll offer up our arms-

46

Since arms avail not, now that Henry's dead.

Posterity, await for wretched years,

48

When, at their mothers' moistened eyes, babes shall suck,

Our isle be made a marish of salt tears,

50

And none but women left to wail the dead.

Henry the Fifth, thy ghost I invocate:

Prosper this realm; keep it from civil broils;

53

Combat with adverse planets in the heavens.

A far more glorious star thy soul will make

Than Julius Caesar or bright-

Enter a Messenger.

messenger

My honorable lords, health to you all.

Sad tidings bring I to you out of France,

Of loss, of slaughter, and discomfiture.

Guyenne, Compigne, Rouen, Rheims, OrlŽans,

60

Paris, Gisors, Poitiers are all quite lost.

bedford

What sayst thou, man, before dead Henry's corpse?

Speak softly, or the loss of those great towns

Will make him burst his lead and rise from death.

64

gloucester To the Messenger

Is Paris lost? Is Rouen yielded up?

If Henry were recalled to life again,

These news would cause him once more yield the ghost.

exeter To the Messenger

How were they lost? What treachery was used?

messenger

No treachery, but want of men and money.

Amongst the soldiers this is mutterd:

70

That here you maintain several factions,

And whilst a field should be dispatched and fought,

72

You are disputing of your generals.

73

One would have ling'ring wars, with little cost;

Another would fly swift, but wanteth wings;

75

A third thinks, without expense at all,

By guileful fair words peace may be obtained.

Awake, awake, English nobility!

Let not sloth dim your honors new-begot.

Cropped are the flower-de-luces in your arms;

80

Of England's coat, one half is cut away.Exit.

exeter

Were our tears wanting to this funeral,

82

These tidings would call forth her flowing tides.

83

bedford

Me they concern; Regent I am of France.

Give me my steeld coat. I'll fight for France.

Away with these disgraceful wailing robes!

He removes his mourning robe.

Wounds will I lend the French, instead of eyes,

87

To weep their intermissive miseries.

88

Enter to them another Messenger, with letters.

second messenger

Lords, view these letters, full of bad mischance.

France is revolted from the English quite,

90

Except some petty towns of no import.

The Dauphin Charles is crownd king in Rheims;

The Bastard of OrlŽans with him is joined;

RenŽ, Duke of Anjou, doth take his part;

The Duke of Alenon flieth to his side.Exit.

exeter

The dauphin crownd king? All fly to him?

O, whither shall we fly from this reproach?

gloucester

We will not fly, but to our enemies' throats.

Bedford, if thou be slack, I'll fight it out.

bedford

Gloucester, why doubt'st thou of my forwardness?

100

An army have I mustered in my thoughts,

Wherewith already France is overrun.

Enter another Messenger.

third messenger

My gracious lords, to add to your laments,

Wherewith you now bedew King Henry's hearse,

I must inform you of a dismal fight

105

Betwixt the stout Lord Talbot and the French.

106

bishop of winchester

What, wherein Talbot overcame-is't so?

third messenger

O no, wherein Lord Talbot was o'erthrown.

The circumstance I'll tell you more at large.

109

The tenth of August last, this dreadful lord,

110

Retiring from the siege of OrlŽans,

Having full scarce six thousand in his troop,

112

By three and twenty thousand of the French

Was round encompassd and set upon.

No leisure had he to enrank his men.

He wanted pikes to set before his archers-

116

Instead whereof, sharp stakes plucked out of hedges

They pitchd in the ground confusdly,

To keep the horsemen off from breaking in.

More than three hours the fight continud,

120

Where valiant Talbot above human thought

Enacted wonders with his sword and lance.

Hundreds he sent to hell, and none durst stand him;

123

Here, there, and everywhere, enraged he slew.

The French exclaimed the devil was in arms:

All the whole army stood agazed on him.

126

His soldiers, spying his undaunted spirit,

"A Talbot! A Talbot!" cried out amain,

128

And rushed into the bowels of the battle.

Here had the conquest fully been sealed up,

130

If Sir John Fastolf had not played the coward.

131

He, being in the vanguard placed behind,

132

With purpose to relieve and follow them,

Cowardly fled, not having struck one stroke.

Hence grew the general wrack and massacre.

135

Enclosd were they with their enemies.

136

A base Walloon, to win the dauphin's grace,

137

Thrust Talbot with a spear into the back-

Whom all France, with their chief assembled strength,

Durst not presume to look once in the face.

140

bedford

Is Talbot slain then? I will slay myself,

For living idly here in pomp and ease

Whilst such a worthy leader, wanting aid,

Unto his dastard foemen is betrayed.

third messenger

O no, he lives, but is took prisoner,

And Lord Scales with him, and Lord Hungerford;

Most of the rest slaughtered, or took likewise.

bedford

His ransom there is none but I shall pay.

148

I'll hale the dauphin headlong from his throne;

His crown shall be the ransom of my friend.

150

Four of their lords I'll change for one of ours.

151

Farewell, my masters; to my task will I.

Bonfires in France forthwith I am to make,

To keep our great Saint George's feast withal.

154

Ten thousand soldiers with me I will take,

Whose bloody deeds shall make all Europe quake.

third messenger

So you had need. Fore OrlŽans, besieged,

The English army is grown weak and faint.

The Earl of Salisbury craveth supply,

159

And hardly keeps his men from mutiny,

160

Since they, so few, watch such a multitude.Exit.

exeter

Remember, lords, your oaths to Henry sworn:

Either to quell the dauphin utterly,

Or bring him in obedience to your yoke.

bedford

I do remember it, and here take my leave

To go about my preparation.Exit.

gloucester

I'll to the Tower with all the haste I can,

167

To view th' artillery and munition,

And then I will proclaim young Henry king. Exit.

exeter

To Eltham will I, where the young king is,

170

Being ordained his special governor,

And for his safety there I'll best devise.Exit.

bishop of winchester

Each hath his place and function to attend;

I am left out; for me, nothing remains.

But long I will not be jack out of office.

The king from Eltham I intend to steal,

And sit at chiefest stern of public weal.Exit.

177

*

¥    I.2 Sound a flourish. Enter Charles the Dauphin, the Duke of Alenon, and RenŽ Duke of Anjou, marching with Drummer and Soldiers.

charles

Mars his true moving-even as in the heavens,

1

So in the earth-to this day is not known.

Late did he shine upon the English side;

3

Now we are victors: upon us he smiles.

What towns of any moment but we have?

5

At pleasure here we lie near OrlŽans

Otherwhiles the famished English, like pale ghosts,

7

Faintly besiege us one hour in a month.

alenon

They want their porridge and their fat bull beeves.

9

Either they must be dieted like mules,

10

And have their provender tied to their mouths,

Or piteous they will look, like drownd mice.

renŽ

Let's raise the siege. Why live we idly here?

13

Talbot is taken, whom we wont to fear.

14

Remaineth none but mad-brained Salisbury,

And he may well in fretting spend his gall:

16

Nor men nor money hath he to make war.

17

charles

Sound, sound, alarum! We will rush on them.

18

Now for the honor of the forlorn French,

Him I forgive my death that killeth me

20

When he sees me go back one foot or flee.Exeunt.

*

¥    I.3 Here alarum. The French are beaten back by the English with great loss. Enter Charles the Dauphin, the Duke of Alenon, and RenŽ Duke of Anjou.

charles

Who ever saw the like? What men have I?

Dogs, cowards, dastards! I would ne'er have fled,

But that they left me 'midst my enemies.

renŽ

Salisbury is a desperate homicide.

He fighteth as one weary of his life.

The other lords, like lions wanting food,

Do rush upon us as their hungry prey.

7

alenon

Froissart, a countryman of ours, records

8

England all Olivers and Rolands bred

9

During the time Edward the Third did reign.

10

More truly now may this be verified,

For none but Samsons and Goliases

12

It sendeth forth to skirmish. One to ten?

Lean raw-boned rascals, who would e'er suppose

14

They had such courage and audacity?

charles

Let's leave this town, for they are harebrained slaves,

And hunger will enforce them to be more eager.

17

Of old I know them: rather with their teeth

The walls they'll tear down, than forsake the siege.

renŽ

I think by some odd gimmers or device

20

Their arms are set, like clocks, still to strike on,

21

Else ne'er could they hold out so as they do.

By my consent we'll even let them alone.

alenon

Be it so.

Enter the Bastard of OrlŽans.

bastard

Where's the Prince Dauphin? I have news for him.

charles

Bastard of OrlŽans, thrice welcome to us.

bastard

Methinks your looks are sad, your cheer appalled.

27

Hath the late overthrow wrought this offense?

Be not dismayed, for succor is at hand.

A holy maid hither with me I bring,

30

Which, by a vision sent to her from heaven,

Ordaind is to raise this tedious siege

And drive the English forth the bounds of France.

The spirit of deep prophecy she hath,

Exceeding the nine sibyls of old Rome.

35

What's past and what's to come she can descry.

Speak: shall I call her in? Believe my words,

For they are certain and unfallible.

charles

Go call her in.Exit Bastard.

        But first, to try her skill,

RenŽ stand thou as dauphin in my place.

40

Question her proudly; let thy looks be stern.

By this means shall we sound what skill she hath.

42

Enter the Bastard of OrlŽans with Joan la Pucelle, armed.

renŽ As Charles

Fair maid, is't thou wilt do these wondrous feats?

joan

RenŽ, is't thou that thinkest to beguile me?

Where is the dauphin? (To Charles) Come, come from behind.

I know thee well, though never seen before.

Be not amazed. There's nothing hid from me.

In private will I talk with thee apart.

Stand back you lords, and give us leave awhile.

RenŽ, Alenon, and Bastard stand apart.

renŽ To Alenon and Bastard

She takes upon her bravely, at first dash.

50

joan

Dauphin, I am by birth a shepherd's daughter,

My wit untrained in any kind of art.

Heaven and our Lady gracious hath it pleased

53

To shine on my contemptible estate.

Lo, whilst I waited on my tender lambs,

And to sun's parching heat displayed my cheeks,

God's mother deignd to appear to me,

And in a vision, full of majesty,

Willed me to leave my base vocation

And free my country from calamity.

60

Her aid she promised, and assured success.

In complete glory she revealed herself-

And whereas I was black and swart before,

63

With those clear rays which she infused on me

64

That beauty am I blessed with, which you may see.

Ask me what question thou canst possible,

And I will answer unpremeditated.

My courage try by combat, if thou dar'st,

And thou shalt find that I exceed my sex.

Resolve on this: thou shalt be fortunate,

70

If thou receive me for thy warlike mate.

71

charles

Thou hast astonished me with thy high terms.

72

Only this proof I'll of thy valor make:

73

In single combat thou shalt buckle with me.

74

An if thou vanquishest, thy words are true;

75

Otherwise, I renounce all confidence.

76

joan

I am prepared. Here is my keen-edged sword,

Decked with five flower-de-luces on each side-

The which at Touraine, in Saint Katherine's churchyard,

Out of a great deal of old iron I chose forth.

80

charles

Then come a God's name. I fear no woman.

81

joan

And while I live, I'll ne'er fly from a man.

Here they fight, and Joan la Pucelle overcomes.

Author

William Shakespeare (1564–1616) was a poet, playwright, and actor who is widely regarded as one of the most influential writers in the history of the English language. Often referred to as the Bard of Avon, Shakespeare's vast body of work includes comedic, tragic, and historical plays; poems; and 154 sonnets. His dramatic works have been translated into every major language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright. View titles by William Shakespeare