King John

KJ I.i.1.1 
Enter King John, Queen Eleanor, Pembroke, Essex,

KJ I.i.1.2 
and Salisbury, with Chatillon of France



KJ I.i.1 
Now, say, Chatillon, what would France with us?
will (v.), past form would 1 desire, wish, want



KJ I.i.2 
Thus, after greeting, speaks the King of France,

KJ I.i.3 
In my behaviour, to the majesty,
behaviour (n.) 1 person, embodiment, personification

KJ I.i.4 
The borrowed majesty, of England here.
borrowed (adj.) assumed, pretended, feigned



KJ I.i.5 
A strange beginning – ‘ borrowed majesty ’!



KJ I.i.6 
Silence, good mother. Hear the embassy.
embassy (n.) 1 message [especially via an ambassador]



KJ I.i.7 
Philip of France, in right and true behalf
behalf (n.), especially: in behalf (of) 1 advantage, interest, benefit

KJ I.i.8 
Of thy deceased brother Geoffrey's son,

KJ I.i.9 
Arthur Plantagenet, lays most lawful claim

KJ I.i.10 
To this fair island and the territories,
territory (n.) dependency, dominion

KJ I.i.11 
To Ireland, Poictiers, Anjou, Touraine, Maine,

KJ I.i.12 
Desiring thee to lay aside the sword
desire (v.) 2 require, command

KJ I.i.13 
Which sways usurpingly these several titles,
several (adj.) 1 separate, different, distinct
sway (v.) 1 control, rule, direct, govern
title (n.) 2 possession, lordship, dominion

KJ I.i.14 
And put the same into young Arthur's hand,

KJ I.i.15 
Thy nephew and right royal sovereign.



KJ I.i.16 
What follows if we disallow of this?
disallow of (v.) reject, deny, refuse to admit



KJ I.i.17 
The proud control of fierce and bloody war,
control (n.) compulsion, constraint, mastery

KJ I.i.18 
To enforce these rights so forcibly withheld.



KJ I.i.19 
Here have we war for war and blood for blood,

KJ I.i.20 
Controlment for controlment. So answer France.
controlment (n.) control, restraint, check



KJ I.i.21 
Then take my King's defiance from my mouth,

KJ I.i.22 
The farthest limit of my embassy.
embassy (n.) 2 ambassadorial role, function as ambassador



KJ I.i.23 
Bear mine to him, and so depart in peace.

KJ I.i.24 
Be thou as lightning in the eyes of France;

KJ I.i.25 
For ere thou canst report I will be there,
report (v.) give an account [of], describe in words

KJ I.i.26 
The thunder of my cannon shall be heard.

KJ I.i.27 
So, hence! Be thou the trumpet of our wrath

KJ I.i.28 
And sullen presage of your own decay.
decay (n.) 1 destruction, downfall, ending
presage (n.) 1 sign, indication, portent
sullen (adj.) 1 gloomy, dismal, melancholy, mournful

KJ I.i.29 
An honourable conduct let him have.
conduct (n.) 5 escort, attendant, guide

KJ I.i.30 
Pembroke, look to't. Farewell, Chatillon.

KJ I.i.30 
Exeunt Chatillon and Pembroke



KJ I.i.31 
What now, my son? Have I not ever said

KJ I.i.32 
How that ambitious Constance would not cease

KJ I.i.33 
Till she had kindled France and all the world

KJ I.i.34 
Upon the right and party of her son?
party (n.) 1 side, faction, camp

KJ I.i.35 
This might have been prevented and made whole
make whole put right, bring to agreement

KJ I.i.36 
With very easy arguments of love,
argument (n.) 4 discussion, debate, dialogue
easy (adj.) 4 effortless, straightforward, uncomplicated

KJ I.i.37 
Which now the manage of two kingdoms must
manage (n.) 3 government, rulers

KJ I.i.38 
With fearful bloody issue arbitrate.
issue (n.) 2 outcome, result, consequence(s)



KJ I.i.39 
Our strong possession and our right for us.



KJ I.i.40 
(to King John)

KJ I.i.40 
Your strong possession much more than your right,

KJ I.i.41 
Or else it must go wrong with you and me.

KJ I.i.42 
So much my conscience whispers in your ear,

KJ I.i.43 
Which none but heaven, and you and I, shall hear.

KJ I.i.44 
Enter a sheriff, who whispers to Essex



KJ I.i.44 
My liege, here is the strangest controversy,

KJ I.i.45 
Come from the country to be judged by you,

KJ I.i.46 
That e'er I heard. Shall I produce the men?



KJ I.i.47 
Let them approach.

KJ I.i.47 
Exit sheriff

KJ I.i.48 
Our abbeys and our priories shall pay

KJ I.i.49.1 
This expeditious charge.
expeditious (adj.) speedy, sudden, quickly needed

KJ I.i.49.1 
Enter Robert Faulconbridge and Philip, his bastard

KJ I.i.49.2 

KJ I.i.49.2 
                         What men are you?



KJ I.i.50 
Your faithful subject I, a gentleman,

KJ I.i.51 
Born in Northamptonshire, and eldest son,

KJ I.i.52 
As I suppose, to Robert Faulconbridge,

KJ I.i.53 
A soldier, by the honour-giving hand

KJ I.i.54 
Of Coeur-de-lion knighted in the field.
field (n.) 1 field of battle, battleground, field of combat



KJ I.i.55 
What art thou?



KJ I.i.56 
The son and heir to that same Faulconbridge.



KJ I.i.57 
Is that the elder, and art thou the heir?

KJ I.i.58 
You came not of one mother then, it seems.



KJ I.i.59 
Most certain of one mother, mighty King –

KJ I.i.60 
That is well known; and, as I think, one father.
well-known (adj.) certain, clear, apparent

KJ I.i.61 
But for the certain knowledge of that truth

KJ I.i.62 
I put you o'er to heaven, and to my mother;
put over (v.) refer, hand over, direct

KJ I.i.63 
Of that I doubt, as all men's children may.



KJ I.i.64 
Out on thee, rude man! Thou dost shame thy mother,
rude (adj.) 4 uncivilized, uncultivated, unrefined

KJ I.i.65 
And wound her honour, with this diffidence.
diffidence (n.) distrust, misgiving, lack of confidence



KJ I.i.66 
I, madam? No, I have no reason for it.

KJ I.i.67 
That is my brother's plea, and none of mine;

KJ I.i.68 
The which if he can prove, 'a pops me out
pop out [informal] disinherit, turn from

KJ I.i.69 
At least from fair five hundred pound a year.
fair (adv.) 7 fully, quite, wholly

KJ I.i.70 
Heaven guard my mother's honour, and my land!



KJ I.i.71 
A good blunt fellow! Why, being younger born,
blunt (adj.) 2 plain-spoken, unceremonious, forthright

KJ I.i.72 
Doth he lay claim to thine inheritance?



KJ I.i.73 
I know not why, except to get the land –

KJ I.i.74 
But once he slandered me with bastardy.
once (adv.) 1 once and for all, in a word

KJ I.i.75 
But whe'er I be as true begot or no,
beget (v.), past form begot 1 give birth to, father, conceive

KJ I.i.76 
That still I lay upon my mother's head.

KJ I.i.77 
But that I am as well begot, my liege –

KJ I.i.78 
Fair fall the bones that took the pains for me! –
bone (n.) 3 (plural) man, person
fair (n.) 2 fortune, happiness, favour
fall (v.) 2 befall, fall on, come to

KJ I.i.79 
Compare our faces and be judge yourself.

KJ I.i.80 
If old Sir Robert did beget us both

KJ I.i.81 
And were our father, and this son like him,

KJ I.i.82 
O old Sir Robert, father, on my knee

KJ I.i.83 
I give heaven thanks I was not like to thee!



KJ I.i.84 
Why, what a madcap hath heaven lent us here!
lend (v.) give, grant, bestow [on]
madcap (n.) mad-brained fellow, lunatic



KJ I.i.85 
(to King John)
trick (n.) 3 peculiarity, idiosyncrasy, distinguishing trait

KJ I.i.85 
He hath a trick of Coeur-de-lion's face;

KJ I.i.86 
The accent of his tongue affecteth him.
accent (n.) 3 sound, voice quality, way of talking
affect (v.) 4 imitate, copy, mimic

KJ I.i.87 
Do you not read some tokens of my son
read (v.) 1 interpret, discern, make something of
token (n.) 1 sign, evidence, mark

KJ I.i.88 
In the large composition of this man?
composition (n.) 1 constitution, make-up, state [of mind and body]
large (adj.) 7 general, broad; or: powerfully built, robust



KJ I.i.89 
(to Queen Eleanor)
part (n.) 1 quality, attribute, gift, accomplishment [of mind or body]

KJ I.i.89 
Mine eye hath well examined his parts

KJ I.i.90 
And finds them perfect Richard. (to Robert Faulconbridge) Sirrah, speak.

KJ I.i.91 
What doth move you to claim your brother's land?



KJ I.i.92 
half-face (n.) profile, side-view

KJ I.i.92 
Because he hath a half-face like my father!

KJ I.i.93 
With half that face would he have all my land –

KJ I.i.94 
A half-faced groat, five hundred pound a year!
half-faced (adj.) 2 [of a coin] showing a monarch's profile; also: clipped, imperfect



KJ I.i.95 
My gracious liege, when that my father lived,

KJ I.i.96 
Your brother did employ my father much –



KJ I.i.97 

KJ I.i.97 
Well, sir, by this you cannot get my land.

KJ I.i.98 
Your tale must be how he employed my mother.



KJ I.i.99 
– And once dispatched him in an embassy
dispatch, despatch (v.) 5 send away, send off
embassy (n.) 2 ambassadorial role, function as ambassador

KJ I.i.100 
To Germany, there with the Emperor

KJ I.i.101 
To treat of high affairs touching that time.
touch (v.) 1 affect, concern, regard, relate to

KJ I.i.102 
Th' advantage of his absence took the King
advantage (n.) 1 right moment, favourable opportunity

KJ I.i.103 
And in the meantime sojourned at my father's,
sojourn (v.) 1 pause, reside, stay for a while

KJ I.i.104 
Where how he did prevail I shame to speak –

KJ I.i.105 
But truth is truth. Large lengths of seas and shores

KJ I.i.106 
Between my father and my mother lay,

KJ I.i.107 
As I have heard my father speak himself,

KJ I.i.108 
When this same lusty gentleman was got.
get (v.) 1 beget, conceive, breed
lusty (adj.) 1 vigorous, strong, robust, eager

KJ I.i.109 
Upon his death-bed he by will bequeathed

KJ I.i.110 
His lands to me, and took it on his death
take (v.) 12 swear, take an oath

KJ I.i.111 
That this, my mother's son, was none of his;

KJ I.i.112 
And if he were, he came into the world

KJ I.i.113 
Full fourteen weeks before the course of time.
course (n.) 2 habit, custom, practise, normal procedure

KJ I.i.114 
Then, good my liege, let me have what is mine,

KJ I.i.115 
My father's land, as was my father's will.



KJ I.i.116 
Sirrah, your brother is legitimate.

KJ I.i.117 
Your father's wife did after wedlock bear him,

KJ I.i.118 
And if she did play false, the fault was hers –
false (adv.) 4 unfaithfully, disloyally, inconstantly,

KJ I.i.119 
Which fault lies on the hazards of all husbands
hazard (n.) 2 [gambling] chance, fortune; throw [of dice]

KJ I.i.120 
That marry wives. Tell me, how if my brother,

KJ I.i.121 
Who, as you say, took pains to get this son,

KJ I.i.122 
Had of your father claimed this son for his?

KJ I.i.123 
In sooth, good friend, your father might have kept

KJ I.i.124 
This calf, bred from his cow, from all the world;

KJ I.i.125 
In sooth he might. Then, if he were my brother's,

KJ I.i.126 
My brother might not claim him, nor your father,

KJ I.i.127 
Being none of his, refuse him. This concludes:
conclude (v.) 4 prove the truth, settle the matter

KJ I.i.128 
My mother's son did get your father's heir;

KJ I.i.129 
Your father's heir must have your father's land.



KJ I.i.130 
Shall then my father's will be of no force

KJ I.i.131 
To dispossess that child which is not his?



KJ I.i.132 
Of no more force to dispossess me, sir,

KJ I.i.133 
Than was his will to get me, as I think.



KJ I.i.134 
Whether hadst thou rather be: a Faulconbridge,

KJ I.i.135 
And like thy brother, to enjoy thy land;

KJ I.i.136 
Or the reputed son of Coeur-de-lion,
reputed (adj.) acknowledged, recognized, accounted

KJ I.i.137 
Lord of thy presence, and no land beside?
presence (n.) 4 gracious self, dignity as a person, personal position



KJ I.i.138 
Madam, an if my brother had my shape

KJ I.i.139 
And I had his – Sir Robert's his, like him;

KJ I.i.140 
And if my legs were two such riding-rods,
riding-rod (n.) cane used in riding, switch

KJ I.i.141 
My arms such eel-skins stuffed, my face so thin

KJ I.i.142 
That in mine ear I durst not stick a rose

KJ I.i.143 
Lest men should say ‘ Look where three-farthings goes!’

KJ I.i.144 
And, to his shape, were heir to all this land –
to (prep.) 6 in addition to

KJ I.i.145 
Would I might never stir from off this place,

KJ I.i.146 
I would give it every foot to have this face;
give (v.) 9 give up, renounce

KJ I.i.147 
I would not be Sir Nob in any case!
Nob (n.) familiar form of Robert



KJ I.i.148 
I like thee well. Wilt thou forsake thy fortune,

KJ I.i.149 
Bequeath thy land to him, and follow me?
bequeath (v.) resign, give up, assign, hand over

KJ I.i.150 
I am a soldier and now bound to France.



KJ I.i.151 
Brother, take you my land, I'll take my chance.

KJ I.i.152 
Your face hath got five hundred pound a year,

KJ I.i.153 
Yet sell your face for fivepence and 'tis dear.

KJ I.i.154 
Madam, I'll follow you unto the death.



KJ I.i.155 
Nay, I would have you go before me thither.



KJ I.i.156 
Our country manners give our betters way.



KJ I.i.157 
What is thy name?



KJ I.i.158 
Philip, my liege, so is my name begun;

KJ I.i.159 
Philip, good old sir Robert's wife's eldest son.



KJ I.i.160 
From henceforth bear his name whose form thou bearest:

KJ I.i.161 
Kneel thou down Philip, but rise more great –

KJ I.i.162 
Arise Sir Richard, and Plantagenet.



KJ I.i.163 
Brother, by th' mother's side, give me your hand.

KJ I.i.164 
My father gave me honour, yours gave land.

KJ I.i.165 
Now blessed be the hour, by night or day,

KJ I.i.166 
When I was got, Sir Robert was away!



KJ I.i.167 
The very spirit of Plantagenet!

KJ I.i.168 
I am thy grandam, Richard. Call me so.
grandam (n.) grandmother



KJ I.i.169 
Madam, by chance but not by truth; what though?
truth (n.) 1 loyalty, allegiance, faithfulness
what though what of it, never mind

KJ I.i.170 
Something about, a little from the right,
about (adv.) 4 indirectly, irregularly

KJ I.i.171 
In at the window, or else o'er the hatch;
hatch (n.) 2 lower part of a door, half-door, gate

KJ I.i.172 
Who dares not stir by day must walk by night,

KJ I.i.173 
And have is have, however men do catch;
catch (v.) 1 seize, get hold of, capture

KJ I.i.174 
Near or far off, well won is still well shot,

KJ I.i.175 
And I am I, howe'er I was begot.



KJ I.i.176 
Go, Faulconbridge. Now hast thou thy desire;

KJ I.i.177 
A landless knight makes thee a landed squire.

KJ I.i.178 
Come, madam, and come, Richard, we must speed

KJ I.i.179 
For France, for France, for it is more than need.



KJ I.i.180 
Brother, adieu. Good fortune come to thee,

KJ I.i.181 
For thou wast got i'th' way of honesty!

KJ I.i.181 
Exeunt all but the Bastard

KJ I.i.182 
A foot of honour better than I was,
foot (n.) 2 step, degree, foothold

KJ I.i.183 
But many a many foot of land the worse!

KJ I.i.184 
Well, now can I make any Joan a lady.

KJ I.i.185 
‘ Good den, Sir Richard!’ – ‘ God 'a' mercy, fellow!’ –

KJ I.i.186 
And if his name be George, I'll call him Peter;

KJ I.i.187 
For new-made honour doth forget men's names –

KJ I.i.188 
'Tis too respective and too sociable
respective (adj.) 1 careful, attentive, considerate

KJ I.i.189 
For your conversion. Now your traveller,
conversion (n.) 2 newly honoured person, ennobled fellow

KJ I.i.190 
He and his toothpick at my worship's mess,
mess (n.) 3 dining company, banqueting table

KJ I.i.191 
And when my knightly stomach is sufficed,
suffice (v.) 1 satisfy, nourish, provide for

KJ I.i.192 
Why then I suck my teeth and catechise
catechize (v.) 1 ask questions of

KJ I.i.193 
My picked man of countries: ‘ My dear sir ’ –
picked (adj.) 1 fastidious, neat, foppish

KJ I.i.194 
Thus, leaning on mine elbow, I begin –

KJ I.i.195 
‘ I shall beseech you ’ – that is question now;

KJ I.i.196 
And then comes answer like an Absey book:
Absey book (n.) [pron: aybee'see] ABC, child's primer

KJ I.i.197 
‘ O sir,’ says answer, ‘ at your best command;

KJ I.i.198 
At your employment; at your service, sir.’
employment (n.) 1 task, service, commission

KJ I.i.199 
‘ No, sir,’ says question, ‘ I, sweet sir, at yours.’

KJ I.i.200 
And so, ere answer knows what question would,
will (v.), past form would 1 desire, wish, want

KJ I.i.201 
Saving in dialogue of compliment,
compliment, complement (n.) 2 ceremony, etiquette, protocol

KJ I.i.202 
And talking of the Alps and Apennines,

KJ I.i.203 
The Pyrenean and the River Po,

KJ I.i.204 
It draws toward supper in conclusion so.

KJ I.i.205 
But this is worshipful society,

KJ I.i.206 
And fits the mounting spirit like myself;
fit (v.) 1 suit, befit, be suitable [for]
mounting (adj.) ambitious, aspiring, rising

KJ I.i.207 
For he is but a bastard to the time
time (n.) 2 times, present day, present state of affairs

KJ I.i.208 
That doth not smack of observation.
observation (n.) 1 observance, rite, customary practice
smack (v.) 2 show the characteristics, savour the taste

KJ I.i.209 
And so am I – whether I smack or no,
smack (v.) 2 show the characteristics, savour the taste

KJ I.i.210 
And not alone in habit and device,
device (n.) 11 heraldic design, emblematic figure, armorial
habit (n.) 1 dress, clothing, costume

KJ I.i.211 
Exterior form, outward accoutrement,
accoutrement (n.) formal embellishment, special trappings

KJ I.i.212 
But from the inward motion – to deliver
motion (n.) 2 emotion, inclination, desire, impulse

KJ I.i.213 
Sweet, sweet, sweet poison for the age's tooth;
poison, sweet flattery
tooth (n.) 3 appetite, taste, hunger

KJ I.i.214 
Which, though I will not practise to deceive,
practise (v.) 1 plot, scheme, conspire

KJ I.i.215 
Yet to avoid deceit I mean to learn;

KJ I.i.216 
For it shall strew the footsteps of my rising.
footsteps (n.) footpath, pathway, steps
strew (v.) 2 scatter, be spread over

KJ I.i.217 
But who comes in such haste in riding robes?

KJ I.i.218 
What woman-post is this? Hath she no husband
woman-post (n.) female carrier of dispatches

KJ I.i.219 
That will take pains to blow a horn before her?

KJ I.i.220 
Enter Lady Faulconbridge and James Gurney

KJ I.i.220 
O me, 'tis my mother! How now, good lady?

KJ I.i.221 
What brings you here to court so hastily?



KJ I.i.222 
Where is that slave thy brother? Where is he

KJ I.i.223 
That holds in chase mine honour up and down?
chase (n.) 1 pursuit, sequence, hunt



KJ I.i.224 
My brother Robert? Old Sir Robert's son?

KJ I.i.225 
Colbrand the Giant, that same mighty man?

KJ I.i.226 
Is it Sir Robert's son that you seek so?



KJ I.i.227 
Sir Robert's son? – Ay, thou unreverend boy,
unreverend (adj.) irreverent, impertinent, impudent

KJ I.i.228 
Sir Roberts son. Why scornest thou at Sir Robert?
scorn (v.) 1 mock, jeer, express disdain [at]

KJ I.i.229 
He is Sir Robert's son, and so art thou.



KJ I.i.230 
James Gurney, wilt thou give us leave a while?



KJ I.i.231.1 
Good leave, good Philip.



KJ I.i.231.2 
                         Philip? – Sparrow! James,

KJ I.i.232 
There's toys abroad. Anon I'll tell thee more.
anon (adv.) 1 soon, shortly, presently
toy (n.) 3 trinket, trifle, trivial ornament

KJ I.i.232 
Exit Gurney

KJ I.i.233 
Madam, I was not old Sir Robert's son.

KJ I.i.234 
Sir Robert might have eat his part in me

KJ I.i.235 
Upon Good Friday and ne'er broke his fast.

KJ I.i.236 
Sir Robert could do well – marry, to confess –
confess (v.) 2 be honest, be frank

KJ I.i.237 
Could he get me! Sir Robert Faulconbridge could not do it!
get (v.) 1 beget, conceive, breed

KJ I.i.238 
We know his handiwork. Therefore, good mother,

KJ I.i.239 
To whom am I beholding for these limbs?
beholding (adj.) beholden, obliged, indebted

KJ I.i.240 
Sir Robert never holp to make this leg.



KJ I.i.241 
Hast thou conspired with thy brother too,

KJ I.i.242 
That for thine own gain shouldst defend mine honour?

KJ I.i.243 
What means this scorn, thou most untoward knave?
knave (n.) 1 scoundrel, rascal, rogue
untoward (adj.) 2 unmannerly, improper, unseemly



KJ I.i.244 
Knight, knight, good mother, Basilisco-like!

KJ I.i.245 
What! I am dubbed, I have it on my shoulder.

KJ I.i.246 
But, mother, I am not Sir Robert's son.

KJ I.i.247 
I have disclaimed Sir Robert and my land;
disclaim (v.) disown, repudiate, renounce [connection with]

KJ I.i.248 
Legitimation, name, and all is gone.
legitimation (n.) legitimacy

KJ I.i.249 
Then, good my mother, let me know my father;

KJ I.i.250 
Some proper man, I hope. Who was it, mother?



KJ I.i.251 
Hast thou denied thyself a Faulconbridge?



KJ I.i.252 
As faithfully as I deny the devil.



KJ I.i.253 
King Richard Coeur-de-lion was thy father.

KJ I.i.254 
By long and vehement suit I was seduced
suit (n.) 2 wooing, courtship

KJ I.i.255 
To make room for him in my husband's bed.

KJ I.i.256 
Heaven lay not my transgression to my charge!

KJ I.i.257 
Thou art the issue of my dear offence,
issue (n.) 1 child(ren), offspring, family, descendant

KJ I.i.258 
Which was so strongly urged past my defence.
urge (v.) 3 solicit, force, press forward



KJ I.i.259 
Now, by this light, were I to get again,
get (v.) 1 beget, conceive, breed

KJ I.i.260 
Madam, I would not wish a better father.

KJ I.i.261 
Some sins do bear their privilege on earth,
privilege (n.) 1 sanctuary, immunity, asylum

KJ I.i.262 
And so doth yours. Your fault was not your folly.

KJ I.i.263 
Needs must you lay your heart at his dispose,
dispose (n.) 1 disposal, control, discretion

KJ I.i.264 
Subjected tribute to commanding love,

KJ I.i.265 
Against whose fury and unmatched force

KJ I.i.266 
The aweless lion could not wage the fight,
aweless (adj.) 2 fearless, unintimidated
wage (v.) 1 risk, venture upon, engage in

KJ I.i.267 
Nor keep his princely heart from Richard's hand.

KJ I.i.268 
He that perforce robs lions of their hearts
perforce (adv.) 1 forcibly, by force, violently

KJ I.i.269 
May easily win a woman's. Ay, my mother,

KJ I.i.270 
With all my heart I thank thee for my father.

KJ I.i.271 
Who lives and dares but say thou didst not well

KJ I.i.272 
When I was got, I'll send his soul to hell.
get (v.) 1 beget, conceive, breed

KJ I.i.273 
Come, lady, I will show thee to my kin,

KJ I.i.274 
And they shall say, when Richard me begot,
beget (v.), past form begot 1 give birth to, father, conceive

KJ I.i.275 
If thou hadst said him nay, it had been sin.

KJ I.i.276 
Who says it was, he lies – I say 'twas not!

KJ I.i.276 

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