A King, and No King
Francis Beaumont and John Fletcher
Part 5 out of 5
_Ligones_ I have read it, and like it,
You shall deliver it.
Well Sir I will: but I have private busines with you.
Speake, what ist?
How has my age deserv'd so ill of you,
That you can picke no strumpets in the Land,
But out of my breed.
Strumpets good _Ligones_?
Yes, and I wish to have you know, I scorne
To get a Whore for any Prince alive,
And yet scorne will not helpe me thinkes: My daughter
Might have beene spar'd, there were enough beside.
May I not prosper, but Shee's innocent
As morning light for me, and I dare sweare
For all the world.
Why is she with you then?
Can she waite on you better then your men,
Has she a gift in plucking off your stockings,
Can she make Cawdles well, or cut your Comes,
Why doe you keepe her with you? For your Queene
I know you doe contemne her, so should I
And every Subject else thinke much at it.
Let um thinke much, but tis more firme then earth
Thou seest thy Queene there.
Then have I made a faire hand, I cald her Whore,
If I shall speake now as her Father, I cannot chuse
But greatly rejoyce that she shall be a Queene: but if
I should speake to you as a Statesman shee were more fit
To be your Whore.
Get you about your businesse to _Arbaces_,
Now you talke idlie.
Yes Sir, I will goe.
And shall she be a Queene, she had more wit
Then her old Father when she ranne away:
Shall shee be a Queene, now by my troth tis fine,
Ile dance out of all measure at her wedding:
Shall I not Sir?
Yes marrie shalt thou.
He make these witherd Kexes beare my bodie
Two houres together above ground.
Nay, goe, my businesse requires haste.
Good God preserve you, you are an excellent King.
Farewell good Father.
Farewell sweete vertuous Daughter;
I never was so joyfull in my life,
That I remember: shall shee be a Queene?
Now I perceive a man may weepe for joy,
I had thought they had lied that said so.
Come my deare love.
But you may see another
May alter that againe.
Urge it no more;
I have made up a new strong constancie,
Not to be shooke with eyes; I know I have
The passions of a man, but if I meete
With any subject that shall hold my eyes
More firmely then is fit; Ile thinke of thee,
and runne away from it: let that suffice.
_Enter Bacurius, and a servant_.
Three gentlemen without to speake with me?
Let them come in.
They are enterd Sir already.
_Enter Bessus, and Swordmen_.
Now fellowes, your busines, are these the Gentlemen.
My Lord I have made bold to bring these Gentlemen my Friends ath'
sword along with me.
I am afraid youle fight then.
My good Lord I will not, your Lordship is mistaken,
Feare not Lord.
Sir I am sorrie fort.
I can aske no more in honor, Gentlemen you heare my Lord is sorrie.
Not that I have beaten you, but beaten one that will be beaten:
one whose dull bodie will require launcing: As surfeits doe the
diet, spring and full. Now to your swordmen, what come they for
good Captaine Stock-fish?
It seemes your Lordship has forgot my name.
No, nor your nature neither, though they are things fitter I
confesse for anything, then my remembrance, or anie honestmans,
what shall these billets doe, be pilde up in my Wood-yard?
Your Lordship holds your mirth still, God continue it: but for
these Gentlemen they come.
To sweare you are a Coward, spare your Booke, I doe beleeve it.
Your Lordship still drawes wide, they come to vouch under their
valiant hands, I am no Coward.
That would be a shew indeed worth seeing: sirra be wise and take
money for this motion, travell with it, and where the name of
_Bessus_ has been knowne, or a good Coward stirring, twill yeeld
more then a tilting. This will prove more beneficiall to you, if
you be thriftie, then your Captaineship, and more naturall; Men
of most valiant hands is this true?
It is so most renowned,
Tis somewhat strange.
Lord, it is strange, yet true; wee have examined from your Lordships
foote there to this mans head, the nature of the beatings; and we doe
find his honour is come off cleane, and sufficient: This as our swords
shall helpe us.
You are much bound to you bilbow-men, I am glad you are straight again
Captaine: twere good you would thinke some way to gratifie them, they
have undergone a labour for you _Bessus_, would have puzzled _hercules_,
with all his valour.
Your Lordship must understand we are no men ath' Law, that take pay
for our opinions: it is sufficient wee have cleer'd our friend.
Yet here is something due, which I as toucht in conscience will
discharge Captaine; Ile pay this rent for you.
Spare your selfe my good Lord; my brave friends aime at nothing but
Thats but a cold discharge Sir for their paines.
O Lord, my good Lord.
Be not so modest, I will give you something.
They shall dine with your Lordship, that's sufficient.
Something in hand the while; ye rogues, ye apple-squiers: doe you
come hether with your botled valour, your windie frothe, to limit
out my beatings.
I doe beseech your Lordship.
O good Lord.
Sfoote, what a many of beaten slaves are here? get me a cudgell
sirra, and a tough one.
More of your foot, I doe beseech your Lordship.
You shall, you shall dog, and your fellow beagle.
A this side good my Lord.
Off with your swords, for if you hurt my foote, Ile have you
fleade you rascals.
Mines off my Lord.
I beseech your Lordship stay a little, my strap's tied to my
codpiece point: Now when you please.
Captaine, these are your valiant friends, you long for a little
I am verie well, I humblie thanke your Lordship.
Whats that in your pocket slave, my key you mungrell? thy
buttocks cannot be so hard, out with't quicklie.
Here tis Sir, a small piece of Artillerie, that a gentleman a
deare friend of your Lordships sent me with to get it mended Sir;
for it you marke, the nose is somewhat loose.
A friend of mine you rascall, I was never wearier of doing
nothing, then kicking these two foote-bals.
Heres a good cudgell Sir.
It comes too late; I am wearie, prethee doe thou beate um.
My Lord this is foule play ifaith, to put a fresh man upon us;
Men, are but men.
That jest shall save your bones, up with your rotten regiment,
and be gone; I had rather thresh, then be bound to kicke these
raskals, till they cride hold: _Bessus_ you may put your hand to
them now, and then you are quit. Farewell, as you like this,
pray visit mee againe, twill keepe me in good breath.
Has a divellish hard foote, I never felt the like.
Nor I, and yet Ime sure I ha felt a hundred.
If he kicke thus ith dog-daies, he will be drie founderd: what
cure now Captaine, besides oyle of bayes?
Why well enough I warrant you, you can goe.
Yes, God be thanked; but I feele a shrewd ach, sure he has sprang
my huckle bone.
I ha lost a haunch.
A little butter friend, a little butter; butter and parselie is a
soveraigne matter: _probatum est_.
Captaine, we must request your hands now to our honours.
Yes marrie shall ye, and then let all the world come, we are
valiant to our selves, and theres an end.
Nay, then we must be valiant; O my ribbes.
O my small guts, a plague upon these sharpe toe'd shooes, they
_Enter Arbaces with his Sword drawne_.
It is resolv'd, I bore it whilst I could,
I can no more, Hell open all thy gates,
And I will thorough them; if they be shut,
Ile batter um, but I will find the place
Where the most damn'd have dwelling; ere I end,
Amongst them all they shall not have a sinne,
But I may call it mine: I must beginne
With murder of my friend, and so goe on
To an incestuous ravishing, and end
My life and sinnes with a forbidden blow
Upon my selfe.
What Tragedie is here?
That hand was never wont to draw a Sword,
But it cride dead to something:
_Mar_. have you bid _Gobrius_ come?
How doe you Sir?
Well, is he comming?
Why Sir are you thus?
Why does your hand proclaime a lawlesse warre
Against your selfe?
Thou answerest me one question with another,
Is _Gobrius_ comming?
Sir he is. _Arb_. Tis well.
I can forbeare your questions then, be gone
Sir, I have markt.
Marke lesse, it troubles you and me.
You are more variable then you were.
It may be so.
To day no Hermit could be humblier
Then you were to us all.
And what of this?
And now you take new rage into your eies,
As you would looke us all out of the Land.
I doe confesse it, will that satisfie,
I prethee get thee gone.
Sir I will speake.
It is my dutie,
I feare you will kill your selfe: I am a subject,
And you shall doe me wrong in't: tis my cause,
And I may speake.
Thou art not traind in sinne,
It seemes _Mardonius_: kill my selfe, by heaven
I will not doe it yet; and when I will,
Ile tell thee then: I shall be such a creature,
That thou wilt give me leave without a word.
There is a method in mans wickednesse,
It growes up by degrees; I am not come
So high as killing of my selfe, there are
A hundred thousand sinnes twixt me and it,
Which I must doe, I shall come toot at last;
But take my oath not now, be satisfied,
And get thee hence.
I am sorrie tis so ill.
Be sorrie then,
True sorrow is alone, grieve by thy selfe.
I pray you let mee see your sword put up
Before I goe; Ile leave you then.
What follie is this in thee? is it not
As apt to mischiefe as it was before?
Can I not reach it thinkest thou? these are toyes
For children to be pleas'd with, and not men;
Now I am safe you thinke: I would the booke
Of Fate were here, my sword is not so sure,
But I should get it out, and mangle that
That all the destinies should quite forget
Their fix't decrees, and hast to make us new
Farre other Fortunes mine could not be worse,
Wilt thou now leave me?
God put into your bosome temperate thoughts,
He leave you though I feare.
Goe, thou art honest,
Why should the hastie errors of my youth
Be so unpardonable, to draw a sinne
Helpelesse upon me?
There is the King, now it is ripe.
Draw neere thou guiltie man,
That are the author of the loathedst crime
Five ages have brought forth, and heare me speake
Curses incurable, and all the evils
Mans bodie or his spirit can receive
Be with thee.
Why Sir doe you curse me thus?
Why doe I curse thee, if there be a man
Subtill in curses, that exceedes the rest,
His worst wish on thee. Thou hast broke my hart.
How Sir? Have I preserv'd you from a childe,
From all the arrowes, malice or ambition
Could shoot at you, and have I this for pay?
Tis true thou didst preserve me, and in that
Wert crueller then hardned murderers
Of infants and their mothers; thou didst save me
Onely till thou hadst studdied out a way
How to destroy me cunningly thy selfe:
This was a curious way of torturing.
What doe you meane?
Thou knowst the evils thou hast done to me,
Dost thou remember all those witching letters
Thou sentst unto me to _Armenia_,
Fild with the praise of my beloved Sister,
Where thou extolst her beautie; what had I
To doe with that, what could her beautie be
To me, and thou didst write how well shee lov'd me,
Doest thou remember this: so that I doated
Something before I saw her.
This is true.
Is it, and I when I was returnd thou knowst
Thou didst pursue it, till thou woundst mee into
Such a strange, and unbeleev'd affection,
As good men cannot thinke on.
This I grant, I thinke I was the cause.
Wert thou? Nay more, I thinke thou meantst it.
Sir I hate a lie.
As I love God and honestie, I did:
It was my meaning.
Be thine owne sad Judge,
A further condemnation will not need:
Prepare thy selfe to die.
Why Sir to die?
Why wouldst thou live, was ever yet offender
So impudent, that had a thought of mercy
After confession of a crime like this?
Get out I cannot, where thou hurlst me in,
But I can take revenge, that's all the sweetnesse
Left for me.
Now is the time, heare me but speake.
No, yet I will be farre more mercifull
Then thou wert to me; thou didst steale into me,
And never gavest me warning: so much time
As I give thee now, had prevented thee
For ever. Notwithstanding all thy sinnes,
If thou hast hope, that there is yet a prayer
To save thee, turne, and speake it to your selfe.
Sir, you shall know your sinnes before you doe um
If you kill me.
I will not stay then.
Know you kill your Father.
You kill your Father.
My Father? though I know it for a lie
Made out of feare to save thy stained life:
The verie reverence of the word comes crosse me,
And ties mine arme downe.
I will tell you that shall heighten you againe, I am thy
Father, I charge thee heare me.
If it should be so,
As tis most false, and that I should be found
A bastard issue, the dispised fruite
Of lawlesse lust, I should no more admire
All my wilde passions: but another truth
Shall be wrung from thee: If I could come by
The spirit of paine, it should be powr'd on thee,
Till thou allowest thy selfe more full of lies
Then he that teaches thee.
Turne thee about,
I come to speake to thee thou wicked man,
Heare me thou Tyrant.
I will turne to thee,
Heare me thou Strumpet: I have blotted out
The name of mother, as thou hast thy shame.
My shame, thou hast lesse shame then anything:
Why dost thou keepe my daughter in a prison?
Why dost thou call her Sister, and doe this?
Cease thou strange impudence, and answere quickly,
If thou contemn'st me, this will aske an answere,
And have it.
Helpe me gentle _Gobrius_.
Guilt dare not helpe guilt, though they grow together
In doing ill, yet at the punishment
They sever, and each flies the noyse of other,
Thinke not of helpe, answere.
I will, to what?
To such a thing as if it be a truth,
Thinke what a creature thou hast made thy selfe,
That didst not shame to doe, what I must blush
Onely to aske thee: tell me who I am,
Whose sonne I am, without all circumstance;
Be thou as hastie, as my Sword will be
If thou refusest.
Why you are his sonne.
Sweare, sweare, thou worse then woman damn'd.
By all thats good you are.
Then art thou all that ever was knowne bad. Now is
The cause of all my strange misfortunes come to light:
What reverence expects thou from a childe
To bring forth which thou hast offended Heaven,
Thy husband and the Land: Adulterous witch
I know now why thou wouldst have poyson'd me,
I was thy lust which thou wouldst have forgot:
Thou wicked mother of my sinnes, and me,
Shew me the way to the inheritance
I have by thee: which is a spacious world
Of impious acts, that I may soone possesse it:
Plagues rott thee, as thou liv'st, and such diseases
As use to pay lust, recompence thy deed.
You doe not know why you curse thus.
You are a paire of Vipers, and behold
The Serpent you have got; there is no beast
But if he knew, it has a pedigree
As brave as mine, for they have more discents,
And I am every way as beastly got,
As farre without the compasse of a law,
You spend your rage, and words in vaine,
And raile upon a guesse: heare us a little.
No I will never heare, but talke away
My breath, and die.
Why but you are no Bastard.
Nor childe of mine.
Still you goe on in wonders to me.
Pray be more patient, I may bring comfort to you.
I will kneele,
And heare with the obedience of a childe;
Good Father speake, I doe acknowledge you,
So you bring comfort.
First know our last King your supposed Father
Was olde and feeble when he marryed her,
And almost all the Land as shee past hope
Of issue from him.
Therefore shee tooke leave
To play the whoore, because the King was old:
Is this the comfort?
What will you find out
To give me satisfaction, when you find
How you have injur'd me: let fire consume mee,
If ever I were whore.
Forbeare these starts,
Or I will leave you wedded to despaire,
As you are now: if you can find a temper,
My breath shall be a pleasant westerne wind,
That cooles, and blastes not.
Bring it out good Father,
He lie, artd listen here as reverentlie
As to an Angell: If I breathe too loude,
Tell me; for I would be as still as night.
Our King I say was old, and this our Queene
Desired to bring an heire; but yet her husband
Shee thought was past it, and to be dishonest
I thinke shee would not; if shee would have beene,
The truth is, shee was watcht so narrowlie,
And had so slender opportunitie,
Shee hardly could have beene: But yet her cunning
Found out this way; shee fain'd her selfe with child,
And postes were sent in haste throughout the Land,
And God was humbly thankt in every Church,
That so had blest the Queen, and prayers were made
For her safe going, and deliverie:
Shee fain'd now to grow bigger, and perceiv'd
This hope of issue made her feard, and brought
A farre more large respect from everie man.
And saw her power increase, and was resolv'd,
Since shee believ'd shee could not have't indeede;
At least shee would be thought to have a child.
Doe I not heare it well: nay, I will make
No noise at all; but pray you to the point,
Quicke as you can.
Now when the time was full,
Shee should be brought abed; I had a sonne
Borne, which was you: This the Queene hearing of,
Mov'd me to let her have you, and such reasons
Shee shewed me, as shee knew would tie
My secresie: shee sware you should be King;
And to be short, I did deliver you
Unto her, and pretended you were dead;
And in mine owne house kept a Funerall,
And had an emptie coffin put in earth:
That night the Queene fain'd hastilie to labour,
And by a paire of women of her owne,
Which shee had charm'd, shee made the world believe
Shee was deliver'd of you: you grew up
As the Kings sonne, till you were six yeere olde;
Then did the King die, and did leave to me
Protection of the Realme; and contrarie
To his owne expectation, left this Queene
Truly with Childe indeed of the faire Princesse
_Panthea_: Then shee could have torne her heire,
And did alone to me yet durst not speake
In publike; for shee knew shee should be found
A Traytor, and her talke would have beene thought
Madnesse or any thing rather then truth:
This was the onely cause why shee did seeke
To poyson you, and I to keepe you safe:
And this the reason why I sought to kindle
Some sparke of love in you to faire _Panthea_,
That shee might get part of her right agen.
And have you made an end now, is this all?
If not, I will be still till I am aged,
Till all my heires are silver.
This is all.
And is it true say you Maddam?
Yes, God knowes it is most true.
_Panthea_ then is not my Sister.
But can you prove this?
If you will give consent: else who dare goe about it.
Why I will have them all that know it rackt
To get this from um: All that waites without
Come in, what ere you be come in, and be
Partakers of my Joy: O you are welcome.
_Ent. Mar: Bessus, and others_.
_Mardonius_ the best newes, nay, draw no neerer
They all shall heare it: I am found no King.
Is that so good newes?
Yes, the happiest newes that ere was heard.
Indeed twere well for you,
If you might be a little lesse obey'd.
On, call the Queene.
Why she is there.
The Queene _Mardonius_, _Panthea_ is the Queene,
And I am plaine _Arbaces_, goe some one,
She is in _Gobrius_ house; since I saw you
There are a thousand things delivered to me
You little dreame of.
So it should seeme: My Lord,
What furi's this.
Beleeve me tis no fury,
All that he sayes is truth.
Tis verie strange.
Why doe you keepe your hats off Gentlemen,
Is it to me? in good faith it must not be:
I cannot now command you, but I pray you
For the respect you bare me, when you tooke
Me for your King, each man clap on his hat at my desire.
We will: but you are not found
So meane a man, but that you may be cover'd
As well as we, may you not?
O not here,
You may, but not I, for here is my Father in presence.
Why there: O the whole storie
Would be a wildernesse to loose thy selfe
For ever; O pardon me deare Father,
For all the idle, and unreverent words
That I have spoke in idle moodes to you:
I am _Arbaces_, we all fellow subjects,
Nor is the Queene _Panthea_ now my Sister.
Why if you remember fellow subject _Arbaces_, I tolde you once
she was not your sister, I say she look't nothing like you.
I thinke you did good Captaine _Bessus_.
Here will arise another question now amongst the Swordmen,
whether I be to call him to account for beating me, now he's
prov'd no King.
Sir, heres _Ligones_
The Agent for the Armenian King.
Where is he, I know your businesse good _Ligones_.
We must have our King againe, and will.
I knew that was your businesse, you shall have
You King againe, and have him so againe
As never King was had. Goe one of you
And bid _Bacurius_ bring _Tigranes_ hither,
And bring the Ladie with him, that _Panthea_
The Queene _Panthea_ sent me word this morning
Was brave _Tigranes_ mistresse.
I, I, _Spaconia_.
She is my daughter.
Shee is so, I could now tell any thing
I never heard; your King shall goe so home
As never man went.
Shall he goe on's head?
He shall have Chariots easier than ayre
That I will have invented; and nere thinke
He shall pay any ransome; and thy selfe
That art the Messenger shall ride before him
On a Horse cut out of an entire Diamond,
That shall be made to goe with golden wheeles,
I know not how yet.
Why I shall be made
For ever, they belied this King with us
And sayd he was unkind.
And then thy daughter,
She shall have some strange thinke, wele have the Kingdome
Sold utterly, and put into a toy.
Which she shall weare about her carelesly
Some where or other.
See the vertuous Queene.
Behold the humblest subject that you have
Kneele here before you. _Pan_. Why kneele you
To me that am your vassall?
Grant me one request.
Alas, what can I grant you?
What I can I will.
That you will please to marry me,
If I can prove it lawfull.
Is that all?
More willingly, then I would draw this ayre.
Ile kisse this hand in earnest.
Sir, _Tigranes_ is comming though he made it strange
To see the Princesse any more.
_Enter Tig. and Spa_.
Thou meanest: O my Tigranes pardon me,
Tread on my necke I freely offer it,
And if thou beest so given; take revenge,
For I have injur'd thee.
No, I forgive,
And rejoice more that you have found repentance,
Then I my libertie.
Maist thou be happie
In thy faire choice; for thou art temperate:
You owe no ransome to the state, know that;
I have a thousand joyes to tell you of,
Which yet I dare not utter, till I pay
My thankes to Heaven for um: will you goe
With me, and helpe me; pray you doe.
Take then your faire one with you and your Queene
Of goodnesse, and of us; O give me leave
To take your arme in mine: Come every one
That takes delight in goodnesse, helpe to sing
Loude thankes for me, that I am prov'd no King.
The following verse variations have also been noted between the
Act printed above from A and the quartos B, C, D and G.
p. 434, ll. 46 and 47. B, C, D, G] two lines, _hint, rope_.
p. 436, ll. 19 and 20. B--D] two lines, _better, Grandsire_.
p. 437, ll. 16--18. B, C, D, G] six lines, _Whore, satisfied,
Dancer, Musilians, thee, whore_.
p. 438, ll. 40 and 41. B, C, D, G] four lines, _laming, fall,
p. 442, ll. 22 and 23. B, C, D, G] two lines, _in-, affection_.
p. 443, ll. 24 and 25. B, C, D, G] three lines, _impudence, me,
answere_. ll. 44 and 45. Three lines, _All, cause, light_.
p. 446, ll. 17 and 18. B, C, D, G] one line, _This_. ll. 19 and
20. B, C, D, G] one line, _Truth_. l. 26. Two lines, _hat,
p. 447, ll. 16 and 17. B, C, D, G] two lines, _ever, us_. ll. 23
and 24. B, C, D, G] one line, _Queene_. ll. 29 and 30. B, C, D,
G] one line, _will_.
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