Pan. What canst thou say, but wil perplex thee more? If thou stand excommunicate, and curst? Fra. Good reuerend father, make my person yours, And tell me how you would bestow your selfe? This royall hand and mine are newly knit, And the coniunction of our inward soules Married in league, coupled, and link'd together With all religous strength of sacred vowes, The latest breath that gaue the sound of words Was deepe-sworne faith, peace, amity, true loue Betweene our kingdomes and our royall selues, And euen before this truce, but new before, No longer then we well could wash our hands, To clap this royall bargaine vp of peace, Heauen knowes they were besmear'd and ouer-staind With slaughters pencill; where reuenge did paint The fearefull difference of incensed kings: And shall these hands so lately purg'd of bloud? So newly ioyn'd in loue? so strong in both, Vnyoke this seysure, and this kinde regreete? Play fast and loose with faith? so iest with heauen, Make such vnconstant children of our selues As now againe to snatch our palme from palme: Vn-sweare faith sworne, and on the marriage bed Of smiling peace to march a bloody hoast, And make a ryot on the gentle brow Of true sincerity? O holy Sir My reuerend father, let it not be so; Out of your grace, deuise, ordaine, impose Some gentle order, and then we shall be blest To doe your pleasure, and continue friends

Pand. All forme is formelesse, Order orderlesse, Saue what is opposite to Englands loue. Therefore to Armes, be Champion of our Church, Or let the Church our mother breathe her curse, A mothers curse, on her reuolting sonne: France, thou maist hold a serpent by the tongue, A cased Lion by the mortall paw, A fasting Tyger safer by the tooth, Then keepe in peace that hand which thou dost hold

Fra. I may dis-ioyne my hand, but not my faith

Pand. So mak'st thou faith an enemy to faith, And like a ciuill warre setst oath to oath, Thy tongue against thy tongue. O let thy vow First made to heauen, first be to heauen perform'd, That is, to be the Champion of our Church, What since thou sworst, is sworne against thy selfe, And may not be performed by thy selfe, For that which thou hast sworne to doe amisse, Is not amisse when it is truely done: And being not done, where doing tends to ill, The truth is then most done not doing it: The better Act of purposes mistooke, Is to mistake again, though indirect, Yet indirection thereby growes direct, And falshood, falshood cures, as fire cooles fire Within the scorched veines of one new burn'd: It is religion that doth make vowes kept, But thou hast sworne against religion: By what thou swear'st against the thing thou swear'st, And mak'st an oath the suretie for thy truth, Against an oath the truth, thou art vnsure To sweare, sweares onely not to be forsworne, Else what a mockerie should it be to sweare? But thou dost sweare, onely to be forsworne, And most forsworne, to keepe what thou dost sweare, Therefore thy later vowes, against thy first, Is in thy selfe rebellion to thy selfe: And better conquest neuer canst thou make, Then arme thy constant and thy nobler parts Against these giddy loose suggestions: Vpon which better part, our prayrs come in, If thou vouchsafe them. But if not, then know The perill of our curses light on thee So heauy, as thou shalt not shake them off But in despaire, dye vnder their blacke weight

Aust. Rebellion, flat rebellion

Bast. Wil't not be? Will not a Calues-skin stop that mouth of thine? Daul. Father, to Armes

The life and death of King John Page 16

William Shakespeare Plays

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William Shakespeare
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