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Henry the Sixth, in infant bands crown'd king
of France and England, did this king succeed; Whose state so znany had the managing,
That they lost France, and made his England bleed : Which oft our stage liath shown; and, for their sake, In your fair minds let this acceptance take. [Exit.
This play has many scenes of high dignity, and many of easy merriment. The character of the king is well supported, except in his courtship, where he has neither the vivacity of Hal, nor the grandeur of Henry. The lumour of Pistol is very happily continued: his character has perhaps been the model of all the bullies that have yet appeared on the English stage:
The lines given to the chorus have inany admirers; but the truth is, that in them a little may be praised, and much must be forgiven ; nor can it be easily discovered, why the intelligence given by the chorus is more necessary in this play, than in many others where it is omitted. The great defect of this play is, the emptiness and narrowness of the last act, which a very little diligence might have easily avoided.
C. Whittingham, Printer, Chiswick.
King Henry VI.
King. Henry Beanfort, Great Uncle to the King, Bishop of
Winchester, and afterwards Cardinal. John Beaufort, Earl of Somerset; afterwards Duke. Richard Plantagenet, eldest Son of Richard, late Earl
of Cambridge; afterwards Duke of York. Earl of Warwick. Earl of Salisbury. Earl of Suffolk. Lord Talbot, afterwards Earl of Shrewsbury. John Talbot, his Son. Edmund Mortimer, Earl of March. Mortimer's Keeper, and a Lawyer. Sir John Fastolfe. Sir William Lucy. Sir William Glansdale. Sir Thomas Gargrave. Mayor of London. Woodville, Lieut. of the Tower. Vernon, of the White Rose, or York Faction. Basset, of the Red Rose, or Lancaster Faction. Charles, Dauphin, and afterwards King of France. Reignier, Duke of Anjou, and titular King of Naples. Duke of Burgundy.
Duke of Alençon. Governor of Paris. Bastard of Orleans. Master-gunner of Orleans, and his Son. General of the French Forces in Bourdeaur. A French Sergeant. A Porter, An old Shepherd, Father to Joan la Pucelle. Margaret, Daughter to Reignier; afterwards married
to King Henry. Countess of Auvergne. Joan la Pucelle, commonly called Joan of Arc. Fiends appeuring to La Pucelle, Lords, Warders of the
Tower, Heralds, Officers, Soldiers, Messengers, and several Attendants, both on the English and French. SCENE, partly in England, and partly in France.
SCENE 1. WESTMINSTER-ABBEY. Dead March. Corpse of King, Henry the Fifth dis
covered, lying in State ; attended on by the Pukes of BedFORD, GLOSTER, and EXETER; the Earl of WARWICK, the Bishop of WINCHESTER, Heralds, &c.
Bed. Hung be the heavens with black, yield day to Comets, importing change of times and states, [night! Brandish your crystal tresses in the sky; And with them scourge the bad revolting stars, That have consented unto Henry's death! Henry the fifth, loo famous to live long! England ne'er lost a king of so much worth.
Glo. England ne'er had a king, until his time, Virtue he bad, deserving to command: His brandish'd sword did blind men with his beams; His arms spread wider than a dragon's wings; His sparkling eyes replete with wrathful' fire, More dazzled and drove back his enemies, Than mid-day sun, fierce bent against their faces. What should I say? his deeds' exceed all speech : He ne'er lift up his hand, but conquerd.
Exe. We mourn in black; Why mourn we not in Henry is dead, and never shall revive: [blood? Upon a wooden coffin we attend; And death's dishonourable victory We with our stately presence glorify, Like captives bound to a triumphant car. What! shall we curse the planets of mishap, That plotted thus our glory's overthrow? Or shall we think the subtle-witted French Conjurers and sorcerers, that, afraid of him, By magic verses have contriv'd his end ?
Win. He was a king bless'd of the King of kings. Unto the French the dreadful judginent day So dreadful will not be, as was his sight.. The battles of the Lord of Hosts he fought: The church's prayers made bim so prosperons.
Glo. The church! where is it? Had not churchmen His thread of life had not so soon decay'd: (pray'd, None do you like but an effeminate prince, Whom, like a school-boy, you may overawe.
Win. Gloster, whate'er we like, thou art protector; And lookest to command the prince, and realm. Thy wife is proud; she holdeth thee in awe, More than God, or religious churchmen, may.
Glo. Name not religion, for thou lov'st the flesh; And ne'er throughout the year to church thou go'st, Except it be to pray against thy foes.
Bed. Cease, cease these jars, and rest your minds in
Let's to the altar :--Heralds, wait on us :-