give me leave to shine sometimes,
Lord. Thou hast a gallant spirit, which I fear
Will be imposèd
on by the closer sort. [Aside
Clar. Well, I'll endeavour to take
Lord Percy's advice; I have been usèd so
To dignity that I'm sick on 't.
Queen Phil. Fie, fie, Lord Clarence! you proceed not to business,
speak of your own pleasures.
I hope their Lordships will excuse your giddiness.
Clar. My Lords, the French
have fitted out many
Small ships of war, that, like to ravening wolves,
Infest our English seas, devouring
Our burden'd vessels, spoiling our naval flocks.
The merchants do complain and beg our aid.
The merchants are rich enough,
Can they not help themselves?
Bish. They can, and may; but how to
gain their will
Requires our countenance and help.
Percy. When that they find they must, my Lord, they
Let them but suffer awhile, and you shall see
They will bestir themselves.
Bish. Lord Percy cannot
mean that we should suffer
This disgrace: if so, we are not sovereigns
Of the sea -- our right, that Heaven
To England, when at the birth of nature
She was seated in the deep; the Ocean ceas'd
roar, and fawning play'd around
Her snowy feet, and own'd his awful Queen.
Lord Percy, if the heart is
sick, the head
Must be aggriev'd; if but one member suffer,
The heart doth fail. You say, my Lord, the
Can, if they will, defend themselves against
These rovers: this is a noble scheme,
brave Lord Percy, and as worthy
His generous aid to put it into practice.
Percy. Lord Bishop, what was
rash in me is wise
In you; I dare not own the plan. 'Tis not
Mine. Yet will I, if you please,
Quickly to the Lord Mayor, and work him onward
To this most glorious voyage; on
I'll set my whole estate,
But we will bring these Gallic rovers under.
Queen Phil. Thanks, brave
Lord Percy; you have the thanks
Of England's Queen, and will, ere long, of England. [Exeunt
Scene. At Cressy. Sir Thomas Dagworth and Lord Audley meeting.
Good morrow, brave Sir Thomas; the bright morn
Enter Sir John Chandos.
Good morrow, Generals; I give you joy:
Smiles on our army, and the gallant sun
from the hills like a young hero
Into the battle, shaking his golden locks
Exultingly: this is a promising day.
Why, my Lord Audley, I don't know.
Give me your hand, and now I'll tell you what
I think you do not know.
Edward's afraid of Philip.
Audley. Ha! Ha! Sir Thomas! you but joke;
Did you e'er see him fear? At Blanchetaque,
almost singly he drove six thousand
French from the ford, did he fear then?
Dagw. Yes, fear -- that made
him fight so.
Aud. By the same reason I might say tis fear
That makes you fight.
Dagw. Mayhap you may: look
upon Edward's face,
No one can say he fears; but when he turns
His back, then I will say it to his face;
is afraid: he makes us all afraid.
I cannot bear the enemy at my back.
Now here we are at Cressy; where
To-morrow we shall know. I say, Lord Audley,
That Edward runs away from Philip.
you think the Prince too is afraid?
Dagw. No; God forbid! I'm sure he is not.
He is a young lion. O! I have
seen him fight
And give command, and lightning has flashèd
From his eyes across the field: I have seen
Shake hands with death, and strike a bargain for
The enemy; he has danc'd in the field
Of battle, like
the youth at morris-play.
I'm sure he's not afraid, nor Warwick, nor none--
None of us but me, and I am
very much afraid.
Aud. Are you afraid too, Sir Thomas?
I believe that as much as I believe
afraid: but what are you afraid of?
Dagw. Of having my back laid open; we turn
Our backs to the fire, till
we shall burn our skirts.
Aud. And this, Sir Thomas, you call fear? Your fear
Is of a different kind then
from the King's;
He fears to turn his face, and you to turn your back.
I do not think, Sir Thomas, you know
what fear is.
Welcome to the fields of Cressy. Here we stop,
Dagw. I hope so.
Aud. There, Sir Thomas, do you call that fear?
Dagw. I don't know; perhaps
he takes it by fits.
Why, noble Chandos, look you here--
One rotten sheep spoils the whole flock;
And if the
bell-wether is tainted, I wish
The Prince may not catch the distemper too.
Chand. Distemper, Sir Thomas!
I have not heard.
Dagw. Why, Chandos, you are a wise man,
I know you understand
me; a distemper
The King caught here in France of running away.
Aud. Sir Thomas, you say you have
caught it too.
Dagw. And so will the whole army; 'tis very catching,
For, when the coward runs, the brave
Perhaps the air of the country is the cause.
I feel it coming upon me, so I strive against it;
yet are whole; but, after a few more
Retreats, we all shall know how to retreat
Better than fight. -- To be