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Profper this realm, keep it from civil broils!
Combat with adverse planets in the heavens!
A far more glorious ftar thy foul will make,
Than Julius Cæfar, or bright

Enter a Meffenger.

MESS, My honourable lords, health to you all! Sad tidings bring I to you out of France, Of lofs, of flaughter, and difcomfiture: Guienne, Champaigne, Rheims, Orleans," Paris, Guyfors, Poitiers, are all quite loft.

Than Julius Cæfar, or bright- ] I can't guess the occafion of the hemiftich and imperfe&t fenfe in this place; 'tis not impoffible it might have been filled up with-Francis Drake, though that were a terrible anachronism (as bad as Hector's quoting Ariftotle in Troilus and Creffida); yet perhaps at the time that brave Englishman was in his glory, to an English-hearted audience, and pronounced by fome favourite ador, the thing might be popular, though not judicious; and, therefore, by fome critic in favour of the author afterwards ftruck out. But this is a mere flight conje&ure. POPE.


To confute the flight conje&ure of Pope, a whole page of vehement oppofition is annexed to this paffage by Theobald. Thomas Hanmer has ftopped at Cæfar-perhaps more judiciously. It might, however, have been written,- or bright Berenice.


Pope's conjecture is confirmed by this peculiar circumftance, that two blazing ftars (the Julium fidus) are part of the arms of the Drake family. It is well known that families and arms were much more attended to in Shakspeare's time, than they are at this day. M. MASON.

This blank undoubtedly arose from the transcriber's or compófitor's not being able to make out the name. So, in a fubfequent paffage the word Nero was omitted for the fame reafon. See the Differtation at the end of the third part of King Henry VI.


9 Guienne, Champaigne, Rheims, Orleans,] This verfe might be completed by the infertion of Rouen among the places loft, as Glofter in his next fpeech infers that it had been mentioned with the reft. STEEVENS.

BED. What fay'ft thou, man, before dead Henry's

Speak softly; or the lofs of those great towns
Will make him burft his lead, and rife from death.
GLO. Is Paris loft? is Rouen yielded up?

If Henry were recall'd to life again,

Thefe news would caufe him once more yield the ghoft.

EXE. How were they loft? what treachery was us'd?

MESS. No treachery; but want of men and money. Among the foldiers this is muttered,—

That here you maintain feveral factions;

And, whilft a field fhould be defpatch'd and fought. You are difputing of your generals.


One would have ling'ring wars, with little coft;
Another would fly fwift, but wanteth wings;
A third man thinks, without expence at all,
By guileful fair words peace may be obtain'd.
Awake, awake, English nobility!

Let not floth dim your honours, new-begot:
Cropp'd are the flower-de-luces in your arms;
Of England's coat one half is cut away.

EXE. Were our tears wanting to this funeral, These tidings would call forth her flowing tides. BED. Me they concern; regent I am of France:Give me my steeled coat, I'll fight for France.Away with these disgraceful wailing-robes! Wounds I will lend the French, inftead of eyes, To weep their intermiffive miseries. 4

A third man thinks,] Thus the fecond folio, The firft omits the word—man, and confequently leaves the verfe imperfe&.


3 her flowing tides. ] i. e. England's flowing tides.



their intermiffive miferies. ] i. e. their miferies, which have

Enter another Messenger.

2. MESS. Lords, view thefe letters, full of bad mischance,

France is revolted from the English quite;
Except fome petty towns of no import:

The Dauphin Charles is crowned king in Rheims;
The baftard of Orleans with him is join'd;
Reignier, duke of Anjou, doth take his part;
The duke of Alençon flieth to his fide.

EXE. The Dauphin crowned king! all fly to him!
O, whither shall we fly from this reproach?
GLO. We will not fly, but to our enemies'

Bedford, if thou be flack, I'll fight it out.

BED Glofter, why doubt'ft thou of my forwardnefs?

An army have I mufter'd in my thoughts,
Wherewith already France is over-run.

Enter a third Meffenger.

3. MESS. My gracious lords,-to add to your la


Wherewith you now bedew king Henry's hearse,— I must inform you of a difmal fight,

Betwixt the flout lord Talbot and the French.

WIN. What! wherein Talbot overcame? is't fo?
3. MESS. O, no; wherein lord Talbot was o'er-

The circumftance I'll tell you more at large.
The tenth of Auguft laft, this dreadful lord,
Retiring from the fiege of Orleans,

had only a short intermiffion from Henry the Fifth's death to my coming amongst them. WARBURTON.

Having full fcarce fix thousand in his troop. 4
By three and twenty thoufand of the French
Was round encompaffed and fet upon :
No leisure had he to enrank his men;
He wanted pikes to fet before his archers;
Instead whereof, fharp flakes, pluck'd out of hedges,
They pitched in the ground confufedly,
To keep the horsemen off from breaking in.
More than three hours the fight continued;
Where valiant Talbot, above human thought,
Enacted wonders 5 with his fword and lance.
Hundreds he fent to hell, and none durft ftand him:
Here, there, and every where, enrag'd he flew : "
The French exclaim'd, The devil was in arms;
All the whole army stood agaz'd on him:
His foldiers, fpying his undaunted spirit,
A Talbot! a Talbot! cried out amain,
And rufh'd into the bowels of the battle.
Here had the conqueft fully been feal'd up,
If fir John Fastolfe had not play'd the coward;



4 Having full Scarce &c.] The modern editors read,fcarce full, but, I think, unneceffarily. So, in The Tempeft:

Prospero, mafter of a full poor cell." STEEVENS. above human thought,

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Enacted wonders] So, in King Richard III:
"The king enas more wonders than a man.'





6 he flew fufped, the author wrote—


And rush'd into the bowels of the battle.] Again, in the fifth ad of this play:

"So, rushing in the bowels of the French."

The fame phrafe had occurred in the first part of Jeronimo,



"Meet, Don Andrea! yes, in the battle's bowels."



If fir John Falftolfe &c.] Mr. Pope has taken notice, That Falftaff is here introduced again, who was dead in Henry V. The

He being in the vaward, (plac'd behind,9
With purpose to relieve and follow them,)
Cowardly fled, not having ftruck one ftroke.
Hence grew the general wreck and maffacre;

occafion whereof is, that this play was written before King Henry IV. or King Henry V." But it is the hiftorical Sir John Faftolfe (for fo he is called by both our Chroniclers) that is here mentioned; who was a lieutenant general, deputy regent to the duke of Bedford ia Normandy, and a knight of the garter; and not the comick charader afterwards introduced by our author, and which was a creature merely of his own brain. Nor when he named him Falstaff do I believe he had any intention of throwing a flur on the memory of this renowned old warrior. THEOBALD.

Mr. Theobald might have feen his notion contradiced in the very line he quotes from. Faftolfe, whether truly or not, is faid by Halland Holinfhed to have been degraded for cowardice. Dr. Heylin, in his Saint George for England, tells us, that " he was afterwards, upon good reafon by him alledged in his defence, reftored to his honour," This Sir John Falfloff," continues he, was without doubt, a valiant and wife captain, notwithstanding the ftage bath made merry with him." FARMER.

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See Vol. XII. p. 184, n. 4; and Oldys's Life of Sir John Faltolfe in the General Dictionary. MALONE.

In the 18th fong of Drayton's Polyolbion is the following character of this Sir John. Faftolph:

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Strong Faftolph with this man compare we juftly may;
By Salfbury who oft being seriously imploy'd

"In many a brave attempt the general foe annoy'd;
With excellent fucceffe in Main and Anjou fought,
"And many a bulwarke there. into our keeping brought:
"And chofen' to go forth with Vadamont in warre,
"Moft refolutely tooke proud Renate duke of Barre."


For an account of this Sir John Faftolfe, fee Anftis's Treatife on the Order of the Garter; Parkins's Supplement to Blomfield's Hiftory

of Norfolk'; Tanner's Bibliotheca Britannica; or Capel's notes, Vol. II. p. 221; and Sir John Feun's Collection of the Pafton Letters.


9 He being in the vaward, (plac'd behind,] Some of the editors feem to have confidered this as a contradiction in terms, and have propofed to read-the rearward, but without neceffity. Some part of the van muft have been behind the foremost line of it. We often fay the back front of a house. STEEVENS.

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