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Gril. True, Abbot; but the mischief is, you churchmen
Can see that something further than the crowd; These musket bullets have not read much logic, Nor are they given to make your nice distinctions: [One enters, and gives the Queen a Note, she reads—
One of them possibly may hit the king In some one part of him that's not divine;And so that mortal part of his majesty would draw the divinity of it into another world, sweet Abbot.
Qu. M. Tis equal madness to go out or stay; The reverence due to kings is all transferred To haughty Guise; and when new gods are made, The old must quit the temple; you must fly.
King. Death! had I wings, yet would I scorn to
Gril. Wings, or no wings, is not the question:If you won't fly fort, you must ride for t. And that comes much to one.
King. Forsake my regal town!
Qu. M. Forsake a bedlam;
Abb. The business then admits no more dispute.
Qu. M. I'll undertake it.—Nay, no thanks, my son.
My blessing shall be given in your deliverance; That once performed, their web is all unravelled, And Guise is to begin his work again. [ExitQ.M. King. I go this minute.
Nay, then another minute must be given.—
Mar. It must not, cannot be.
Gril. No, nor shall not, wench, as long as my soul wears a body.
King. Secure in that, I'll trust thee;—shall I trust thee?
For conquerors have charms, and women frailty:— Farewell, thou mayst behold me king again; My soul's not yet deposed:—why then farewell!— I'll say't as comfortably as I can:But O cursed Guise, for pressing on my time, And cutting off ten thousand more adieus!
Mar. The moments that retard your flight are traitors.
Make haste, my royal master, to be safe,
King. Wilt thou go too?
[Exeunt, the King leading her. ACT V.
SCENE l.—The Castle'of Blois.
Enter Grillon, and Alphonso Corso.
GriL Welcome, colonel, welcome to Blois. Alph. Since last we parted at the barricadoes, The world's turned upside down.
Gril. No, 'faith, 'tis better now,'tis downside up: Our part o'the wheel is rising, though but slowly. Alph. Who looked for an assembly of the States? GriL When the king was escaped from Paris, and got out of the toils, 'twas time for the Guise to take them down, and pitch others: that is, to treat for the calling of a parliament, where, being he had missed by force.
Alph. But why should the king assemble the States, to satisfy the Guise, after so many affronts?
Gril. For the same reason, that a man in a duel says he has received satisfaction, when he is first wounded, and afterwards disarmed.
Alph. But why this parliament at Blois, and not at Paris?
Gril. Because no barricadoes have been made at Blois. This Blois is a very little town, and the king can draw it after him; but Paris is a damned unwieldy bulk; and when the preachers draw against the king, a parson in a pulpit is a devilish forehorse. Besides, I found in that insurrection what dangerous beasts these townsmen are; I tell you, colonel, a man had better deal with ten of their wives, than with one zealous citizen: O your inspired cuckold is most implacable.
Alph. Is there any seeming kindness between the king and the duke of Guise?
sure of the
he might get by law what
Gril. Yes, most wonderful: they are as dear to one another as an old usurer, and a rich young heir upon a mortgage. The king is very loyal to the Guise, and the Guise is very gracious to the king: Then the cardinal of Guise, and the archbishop of Lyons, are the two pendants that are always hanging at the royal ear; they ease his majesty of all the spiritual business, and the Guise of all the temporal; so that the king is certainly the happiest prince in Christendom, without any care upon him: so yielding up every thing to his loyal subjects, that he's infallibly in the way of being the greatest and most glorious king in all the world.
Alph. Yet I have heard he made a sharp reflecting speech upon their party at the opening of the parliament, admonished men of their duties, pardoned what was past, but seemed to threaten vengeance if they persisted for the future.
Gril. Yes; and then they all took the sacrament together: he promising to unite himself to them, and they to obey him, according to the laws; yet the very next morning they went on, in pursuance of their old commonwealth designs, as violently as ever.
Alph. Now, I am dull enough to think they have broken their oath.
Gril. Ay, but you are but one private man, and they are the three States; and if they vote that they have not broken their oaths, who is to be judge?
Alph. There's one above.
Gril. 1 hope you mean in heaven; or else you are a bolder man than I am in parliament time*; but here comes the master and my niece.
* It was a frequent complaint of the tories at this period, that the commons, in zeal for their own privileges and immunities.
Alph. Heaven preserve him! if a man may pray for him without treason.
Gril. O yes, you may pray for him; the preachers of the Guise's side do that most formally; nay,
were apt sometimes to infringe the personal liberties of the subject. This is set forth with some humour in a political pamphlet of the day, called, "A Dialogue betwixt Sam, the ferryman of Datcliet, Will, a waterman of London, and Tom, a bargeman of Oxford ;" upon the king's calling a parliament to meet at Oxford, London, 1681. "As to their own members, they turned them out, and took others in at their will and pleasure; and if they made any fault, they expelled them; and wherever any stood in competition for any town, him they knew would give his vote along with them was admitted, right or wrong. And then they terrified all the sheriffs, mayors, and bailiffs in the kingdom, besides abundance of gentlemen and other honest countrymen. For, on the least complaint of any man's misdemeanour, or information from any member, immediately a serjeant at arras was sent for them, and so much a mile and hour paid, and down on their marrowbones to their worships, and a sound scolding from Mr Speaker, or else to the Tower or Gatehouse they went. The king, God bless him, never took a quarter of that state on him they did• • • • It was brought to that pass, that two footboys, boxing one day in the Palace-yard, he that was beaten proved to belong to a member, and told the other boy, if he knew his master, he would cause him to be sent for in custody, for keeping such a rogue as he was, that had committed a breach of privilege in beating a member's servant. The boy replied, if it would do him any kindness, he would beat him again, and tell him his master's name into the bargain; and would lay him a crown, that, though his master should bid the Speaker, and all the House of Commons, kiss, &c. they durst not send a serjeant at arms for him. The beaten boy, much nettled at his speech, laid down his money, as the other did: now, said the boy, my master is the king of France, and I am come over with some of his servants to fetch horses out of England; go, bid thy master and the House of Commons send a serjeant at arms to fetch him over.— Sam. Before my heart it was a good answer; I hope he won his monies ?—Will. So he did; but it was put into a waterman's hands, and when it was demanded, says the beaten boy, Sirrah, give it him, if you dare; if his master be the king of France, I'll make you answer it before the House of Commons. The waterman durst do no other, but gave either their own monies. There's no contending with parliament men, or parliament men's men, nor boys."