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Which would be planted newly with the time,-.
Of this dead butcher, and his fiend-like queen;
This play is deservedly celebrated for the propriety of its fiction, and solemnity, grandeur, and variety of its action; but it has no nice discriminations of character; the events are too great to admit the influence of particular dispositions, and the course of the action necessarily determines the conduct of the agents.
The danger of ambition is well described; and I know not whether it may not be said, in defence of some parts which now seem improbable, that in Shakspeare's time it was necessary to warn credulity against vain and illusive predictions.
The passions are directed to their true end. Lady Macbeth is merely detested; and though the courage of Macbeth preserves some esteem, yet every reader rejoices at his fall, JOHNSON.
C. Whittingham, Printer, Chiswick.
Prince Henry, his Son; afterwards King Henry 111. Arthur, Duke of Bretagne, Son of Geffrey, late Duke of Bretagne, the elder Brother of King John. William Mareshall, Earl of Pembroke.
Geffrey Fitz-Peter, Earl of Essex, Chief Justiciary of
William Longsword, Earl of Salisbury.
Hubert de Burgh, Chamberlain to the King.
Philip Faulconbridge, his Half-Brother, Bastard Son to King Richard the First.
James Gurney, Servant to Lady Faulconbridge.
Philip, King of France.
Lewis, the Dauphin.
Archduke of Austria.
Cardinal Pandulph, the Pope's Legate.
Melun, a French Lord.
Chatillon, Ambassador from France to King John.
Elinor, the Widow of King Henry II. and Mother of King John.
Constance, Mother to Arthur.
Blanch, Daughter to Alphonso, King of Castile, and Niece to King John.
Lady Faulconbridge, Mother to the Bastard, and Robert Faulconbridge.
Lords, Ladies, Citizens of Angiers, Sheriff, Heralds, Officers, Soldiers, Messengers, and other Attendants.
SCENE, sometimes in England, and sometimes in
NORTHAMPTON. A Room of State in the Palace. Enter KING JOHN, QUEEN ELINOR, PEMBROKE, ESSEX, SALISBURY, and others, with CHATILLON.
K. John. Now, say, Chatillon, what would France
Chat. Thus, after greeting, speaks the king of France, In my behaviour, to the majesty,
The borrow'd majesty of England here.
Eli. A strange beginning;-borrow'd majesty!
To Ireland, Poictiers, Anjou, Touraine, Maine:
Which sways usurpingly these several titles;
K. John. What follows, if we disallow of this? Chat. The proud control of fierce and bloody war, To enforce these rights so forcibly withheld. [blood, K. John. Here have we war for war, and blood for Controlment for controlment: so answer France.
Chat. Then take my king's defiance from my mouth, The furthest limit of my embassy.
K. John. Bear mine to him, and so depart in peace: Be thou as lightning in the eyes of France; For ere thou canst report I will be there, The thunder of my cannon shall be heard: So, hence! Be thou the trumpet of our wrath, of And sullen presage your own decay.An honourable conduct let him have: Pembroke, look to't: Farewell, Chatillon.
[Exeunt Chatillon and Pembroke.
This might have been prevented, and made whole,
Which now the manage of two kingdoms must
K.John. Our strong possession, and our right, for us.
Enter the Sheriff of Northamptonshire, who whispers
Essex. My liege, here is the strangest controversy,