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He and his toothpick at my worship's mess,
And when my knightly stomach is suffic'd,
Why then I suck my teeth, and catechise
My picked man of countries a : My dear sir,
(Thus leaning on my elbow, I begin,)
I shall beseech you—That is question now;
And then comes answer like an Absey book :
0, sir, says answer, at your best command;
At your employment; at your service, sir:
No, sir, says question, I, sweet sir, at yours :
And so, ere answer knows what question would,
Saving in dialogue of compliment;
And talking of the Alps and Apennines,
The Pyrenean, and the river Po,
It draws toward supper in conclusion so.
But this is worshipful society,
And fits the mounting spirit like myself :
For he is but a bastard to the time,
That doth not smacke of observation;
(And so am I, whether I smack, or no ;)
And not alone in babit and device,
Exterior form, outward accoutrement;
But from the inward motion to deliver
Sweet, sweet, sweet poison for the age's tooth :
Which, though I will not practise to deceive,
Yet to avoid deceit I mean to learn ;
For it shall strew the footsteps of my rising.-
But who comes in such baste, in riding robes ?
What woman-post is this? bath she no husband,
That will take pains to blow a horn before her?
Enter Lady FauLCONBRIDGE and JAMES GURNEY.
O me! it is my mother:-How now, good lady?
What brings you here to court so hastily?
Lady F. Where is that slave, thy brother? where is he?
That holds in chase mine honour up and down?
Bast. My brother Robert? old sir Robert's son ?
Colbrand the giant”, that same mighty man ?
Is it sir Robert's son that
seek so? • Picked man of countries. “The travelled fool," " the pert, conceited, talking spark," of the modern fable, is the old “picked man of countries.” “To pick” is the same as "to trim.” Steevens says it is a metaphor derived from the action of birds in picking their feathers. “He is too picked, too spruce, too affected," occurs in Love's Labour's Lost,' Act V.
Absey-book, the common name for the first or A, B, C, book. The Catechism was generally included in these books; and thus the reference in the text to “question " and "answer."
Smack. The original has smoke.
LADY F. Sir Robert's son! Ay, thou unreverend boy,
Sir Robert's son: Why scorn'st thou at sir Robert ?
He is sir Robert's son; and so art thou.
Bast. James Gurney, wilt thou give us leave a while ?
GUR. Good leave, good Philip.
There's toys abroad; anon I 'll tell thee more.
Madam, I was not old sir Robert's son;
Sir Robert might have eat his part in me
Upon Good-Friday, and ne'er broke his fast:
Sir Robert could do well; Marry—to confess-
Could he get me ? Sir Robert could not do it;
We know his handiwork :—Therefore, good mother,
To whom am I beholden for these limbs ?
Sir Robert never holp to make this leg.
LADY F. Hast thou conspired with thy brother too,
That for thine own gain shouldst defend mine honour?
What means this scorn, thou most' untoward knave ?
Bast. Knight, knight, good mother,–Basilisco-likeb;
What! I am dubb'd; I have it on my shoulder.
But, mother, I am not sir Robert's son;
I have disclaim'd sir Robert, and my land;
Legitimation, name, and all is gone:
Then, good my mother, let me know my father ;
Some proper man, I hope; Who was it, mother?
LADY F. Hast thou denied thyself a Faulconbridge ?
Bast. As faithfully as I deny the devil.
Lady F. King Richard Cour-de-lion was thy father:
By long and vehement suit I was seduc'd
To make room for him in my husband's bed.
Heaven! lay not my transgression to my charge,
Thou art the issue of my dear offence,
Which was so strongly urg'd, past my defence.
Philip!-sparrow! The sparrow was called Philip,-perhaps from his note, out of which Catullus, in his elegy on Lesbia's sparrow, formed a verb, pipilabat. When Gurney calls the bastard “good Philip,” the new “Sir Richard” tosses off the name with contempt—"sparrow!" He then puts aside James, with "anon I 'll tell thee more.”
Basilisco-like. Basilisco is a character in a play of Shakspere's time, 'Soliman and Perseda,' from which Tyrwhitt quotes a passage which may have suggested the words of the Bastard. The oaths of Basilisco became proverbial. Basilisco is mentioned by Nash, in 1596.
• Heaven, &c. We have restored the reading of the old copy, which appears to us more in Shakspere's manner than the customary text
“ Heaven lay not my transgression to my charge.
Thou art the issue of my dear offence," &c. Lady Faulconbridge is not invoking Heaven to pardon her transgression; but she says to her son, -for Heaven's sake, lay not (thou) my transgression to my charge that art the issue of it. The reply of Faulconbridge immediately deprecates any intention of upbraiding his mother.
Bast. Now, by this light, were I to get again,
Madam, I would not wish a better father.
Some sins do bear their privilege on earth,
And so doth yours : your fault was not your folly;
Needs must you lay your heart at his dispose, –
Subjected tribute to commanding love,-
Against whose fury and unmatched force
The awless a lion could not wage the fight,
Nor keep his princely heart from Richard's hands.
He that perforce robs lions of their hearts,
May easily win a woman's. Ay, my mother,
With all my heart I thank thee for my father!
Who lives and dares but say, thou didst not well
When I was got, I 'll send his soul to hell.
Come, lady, I will show thee to my
And they shall say, when Richard me begot,
If thou hadst said him nay, it had been sin :
Who says it was, he lies; I say, 't was not.
• A wless the opposite of awful; not inspiring awe.
Enter on one side, the ARCADUKE OF AUSTRIA, and Forces ; on the other, PHILIP,
King of France, and Forces ; LEWIS, CONSTANCE, ARTHUR, and Attendants.
LEW. Before Angiers well met, brave Austria.
Arthur, that great fore-runner of thy blood,
Richard, that robb’d the lion of his heart,
And fought the holy wars in Palestine,
By this brave duke came early to his grave:
And, for amends to his posterity,
At our importance 1 hither is he come,
To spread his colours, boy, in thy behalf;
And to rebuke the usurpation
Of thy unnatural uncle, English John ;
Embrace him, love him, give him welcome hither.
ARTH. God shall forgive you Cæur-de-lion's death,
The rather, that you give his offspring life,
Shadowing their right under your wings of war :
I give you welcome with a powerless hand,
But with a heart full of unstained love :
Welcome before the gates of Angiers, duke.
Lew. A noble boy! who would not do thee right?
Aust. Upon thy cheek lay I this zealous kiss,
As seal to this indenture of my love ;
That to my home I will no more return,
Till Angiers, and the right thou hast in France,
Together with that pale, that white-fac'd shore,
Whose foot spurns back the ocean's roaring tides,
And coops from other lands her islanders,
Even till that England, hedg'd in with the main,
That water-walled bulwark, still secure
And confident from foreign purposes,
Even till that utmost corner of the west
Salute thee for her king : till then, fair boy,
Will I not think of bome, but follow arms.
CONST. O, take his mother's thanks, a widow's thanks,
Till your strong hand shall help to give him strength
To make a more requital to your love.
Aust. The peace of heaven is theirs that lift their swords
In such a just and charitable war.
K. Par. Well, then, to work; our cannon shall be bent
Against the brows of this resisting town.
Call for our chiefest men of discipline,
To cull the plots of best advantages :
We'll lay before this town our royal bones,
Wade to the market-place in Frenchmen's blood,
But we will make it subject to this boy.
Const. Stay for an answer to your embassy,
Lest unadvis'd you stain your swords with blood :
My lord Chatillon may from England bring
That right in peace, which here we urge in war;
And then we shall repent each drop of blood
That hot-rash haste so indirectly shed.
K. PHI. A wonder, lady!—lo, upon thy wish,
Our messenger Chatillon is arriv'd. -
What England says, say briefly, gentle lord,
We coldly pause for thee; Chatillon, speak.
Chat. Then turn your forces from this paltry siege,
And stir them up against a mightier task.
England, impatient of your just demands,