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In this great business, let me understand What 'tis you mean, and why you force the king Upon so dangerous an expedition.
Gui. Sir, I intend the greatness of the king; The greatness of all France, whom it imports To make their arms their business, aim, and glory; And where so proper as upon those rebels, That covered all the state with blood and death?
Gril. Stored arsenals and armouries, fields of horse, Ordnance, munition, and the nerve of war, Sound infantry, not harassed and diseased, To meet the fierce Navarre, should first be thought on.
Gui. I find, my lord, the argument grows warm, Therefore, thus much, and I have done: I go To join the Holy League in this great war, In which no place of office, or command, Not of the greatest, shall be bought or sold; Whereas too often honours are conferred On soldiers, and no soldiers: This man knighted, Because he charged a troop before his dinner, And sculked behind a hedge i'the afternoon: I will have strict examination made Betwixt the meritorious and the base.
Gril. You have mouthed it bravely, and there is no doubt Your deeds would answer well your haughty words;Yet let me tell you, sir, there is a man, (Curse on the hearts that hate him!) that would better, Better than you, or all your puffy race, That better would become the great battalion;That when he shines in arms, and suns the field, Moves, speaks, and fights, and is himself a war.
Gui. Your idol, sir; you mean the great Navarre: But yet
Gril. No yet, my lord of Guise, no yet; By arms, I bar you that; I swear, no yet; For never was his like, nor shall again,
Though voted from his right by your cursed League.
Gui. Judge not too rashly of the Holy League, But look at home.
Gril. Ha! darest thou justify Those villains r
Gui. I'll not justify a villain,
Gril . What, if I could,
Gui. Colonel, 'tis very well I know your mind, Which, without fear, or flattery to your person, I'll tell the king; and then, with his permission, Proclaim it for a warning to our people.
Gril . Come, you're a murderer yourself within, A traitor.
Gui. Thou a hot old hair-brained fool.
Gril . You were complotter with the cursed League, The black abettor of our Harry's death. Gui. Tis false.
Gril . 'Tis true, as thou art double-hearted: Thou double traitor, to conspire so basely; And when found out, more basely to deny't.
Gui. O gracious Harry, let me sound thy name, Lest this old rust of war, this knotty trifler, Should raise me to extremes.
Gril . If thou'rt a man,
* The king of Navarre (Henry IV.), by his manifesto, publish
Gui. Go on; since thou'rt resolved on death, I'll follow thee, and rid thy shaking soul.
Enter King, Queen-Mother, Alphonso, Abbot, &;c.
But see, the king: I scorn to ruin thee,
King. Ha, colonel, is this your friendly visit? Tell me the truth, how happened this disorder? Those ruffled hands, red looks, and port of fury?
Gril. I told him, sir, since you will have it so, He was the author of the rebel-league; Therefore, a traitor and a murderer.
King. Is't possible?
Gui. No matter, sir, no matter;
King. Grillon, submit yourself, and ask his pardon.
Gril. Pardon me, I cannot do't. King. Where are the guards!Gui. Hold, sir;—come, colonel, I'll ask pardon for you;This soldierly embrace makes up the breach;We will be sorry, sir, for one another.
Gril. My lord, I know not what to answer you; I'm friends,—and I am not,—and so farewell. [Exit.
King. You have your orders; yet before you go,
ed in 1585, after discussing sundry points of state with the leaguers, defied the Duke of Guise, their leader, to mortal combat, body to body, or two to two, or ten to ten, or twenty to twenty. To this romantic defiance the Duke returned no direct answer; but his partizans alleged, that as the quarrel betwixt the king of Navarre and their patron did not arise from private enmity, it could not become the subject of single combat. Davi/a, lib. vii.
Take this embrace: I court you for my friend,
Gui. I thank you on my knees;
Qu. M. Excellent loyalty, to lock you up!
King. I see even to the bottom of his soul; And, madam, I must say the Guise has beauties, But they are set in night, and foul design: He was my friend when young, and might be still.
Abk Marked you his hollow accents at the parting?
Qu. M. Graves in his smiles.
King. Death in his bloodless hands.— O Marmoutiere! now I will haste to meet thee: The face of beauty, on this rising horror, Looks like the midnight moon upon a murder;
It gilds the dark design that stays for fate,
And drives the shades, that thicken, from the state. [Exeunt.
ACT III. SCENE I.
Enter Grillon and Polin.
Gril. Have then this pious Council of Sixteen Scented your late discovery of the plot?
Pol. Not as from me; for still I kennel with them, And bark as loud as the most deep-mouthed traitor, Against the king, his government, and laws; Whereon immediately there runs a cry Of,—Seize him on the next procession! seize him, And clap the Chilperick in a monastery! Thus it was fixt, as I before discovered; But when, against his custom, they perceived The king absented, strait the rebels met,
And roared,—they were undone.
Gril. O, 'tis like them; Tis like their mongrel souls: flesh them with fortune, And they will worry royalty to death; But if some crabbed virtue turn and pinch them, Mark me, they'll run, and yelp, and clap their tails, Like curs, betwixt their legs, and howl for mercy.
Pol. But Malicorn, sagacious on the point, Cried,—Call the sheriffs, and bid them arm their bands;
.Add yet to this, to raise you above hope,
Enter Sheriff's, with the Populace.
Gril. Away, I'll have amongst them; Fly to the king, warn him of Guise's coming, That he may strait despatch his strict commands To stop him. [Exit Polin.
1 Sher. Nay, this is colonel Grillon, The blunderbuss o'the court; away, away, He carries ammunition in his face.
Gril. Hark you, my friends, if you are not in haste, Because you are the pillars of the city, I would inform you of a general ruin.
2 Sher. Ruin to the city! marry, heaven forbid!
'Tis blown about, you've plotted on the king,
VOL. VII. D