King John

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Act I, Scene I
Enter King Iohn, Queene Elinor, Pembroke, Essex,
and Salisbury, with the Chattylion of France.

King Iohn.
NOw say Chatillon, what would France with vs?

Chat.
Thus (after greeting) speakes the King of France,
In my behauiour to the Maiesty,
The borrowed Maiesty of England heere.

Elea.
A strange beginning: borrowed Maiesty?

K.Iohn.
Silence (good mother) heare the Embassie.

Chat.
Philip of France, in right and true behalfe
Of thy deceased brother, Geffreyes sonne,
Arthur Plantaginet, laies most lawfull claime
To this faire Iland, and the Territories:
To Ireland, Poyctiers, Aniowe, Torayne, Maine,
Desiring thee to lay aside the sword
Which swaies vsurpingly these seuerall titles,
And put the same into yong Arthurs hand,
Thy Nephew, and right royall Soueraigne.

K.Iohn.
What followes if we disallow of this?

Chat.
The proud controle offierce and bloudy warre,
To inforce these rights, so forcibly with-held,

K.Io.
Heere haue we war for war, & bloud for bloud,
Controlement for controlement: so answer France.

Chat.
Then take my Kings defiance from my mouth,
The farthest limit of my Embassie.

K.Iohn.
Beare mine to him, and so depart in peace,
Be thou as lightning in the eies of France;
For ere thou canst report, I will be there:
The thunder of my Cannon shall be heard.
So hence: be thou the trumpet of our wrath,
And sullen presage of your owne decay:
An honourable conduct let him haue,
Pembroke looke too't: farewell Chattillion.
Exit Chat. and Pem.

Ele.
What now my sonne, haue I not euer said
How that ambitious Constance would not cease
Till she had kindled France and all the world,
Vpon the right and party ofher sonne.
This might haue beene preuented, and made whole
With very easie arguments of loue,
Which now the mannage of two kingdomes must
With fearefull bloudy issue arbitrate.

K.Iohn.
Our strong possession, and our right for vs.

Eli.
Your strong possessiõ much more then your right,
Or else it must go wrong with you and me,
So much my conscience whispers in your eare,
Which none but heauen, and you, and I, shall heare.
Enter a Sheriffe.

Essex.
My Liege, here is the strangest controuersie
Come from the Country to be iudg'd by you
That ere I heard: shall I produce the men?

K.Iohn.
Let them approach:
Our Abbies and our Priories shall pay
This expeditious charge:
Enter Robert Faulconbridge, and Philip.
what men are you?

Philip.
Your faithfull subiect, I a gentleman,
Borne in Northamptonshire, and eldest sonne
As I suppose, to Robert Faulconbridge,
A Souldier by the Honor-giuing-hand
Of Cordelion, Knighted in the field.

K.Iohn.
What art thou?

Robert.
The son and heire to that same Faulconbridge.

K.Iohn.
Is that the elder, and art thou the heyre?
You came not of one mother then it seemes.

Philip.
Most certain of one mother, mighty King,
That is well knowne, and as I thinke one father:
But for the certaine knowledge of that truth,
I put you o're to heauen, and to my mother;
Of that I doubt, as all mens children may.

Eli.
Out on thee rude man, yu dost shame thy mother,
And wound her honor with this diffidence.

Phil.
I Madame? No, I haue no reason for it,
That is my brothers plea, and none of mine,
The which if he can proue, a pops me out,
At least from faire fiue hundred pound a yeere:
Heauen guard my mothers honor, and my Land.

K.Iohn.
A good blunt fellow: why being yonger born
Doth he lay claime to thine inheritance?

Phil.
I know not why, except to get the land:
But once he slanderd me with bastardy:
But where I be as true begot or no,
That still I lay vpon my mothers head,
But that I am as well begot my Liege
(Faire fall the bones that tooke the paines for me)
Compare our faces, and be Iudge your selfe
If old Sir Robert did beget vs both,
And were our father, and this sonne like him:
O old sir Robert Father, on my knee
I giue heauen thankes I was not like to thee.

K.Iohn.
Why what a mad-cap hath heauen lent vs here?

Elen.
He hath a tricke of Cordelions face,
The accent of his tongue affecteth him:
Doe you not read some tokens of my sonne
In the large composition of this man?

K.Iohn.
Mine eye hath well examined his parts,
And findes them perfect Richard: sirra speake,
What doth moue you to claime your brothers land.

Philip.
Because he hath a half-face like my father?
With halfe that face would he haue all my land,
A halfe-fac'd groat, fiue hundred pound a yeere?

Rob.
My gracious Liege, when that my father liu'd,
Your brother did imploy my father much.

Phil.
Well sir, by this you cannot get my land,
Your tale must be how he employ'd my mother.

Rob.
And once dispatch'd him in an Embassie
To Germany, there with the Emperor
To treat of high affaires touching that time:
Th' aduantage of his absence tooke the King,
And in the meane time soiourn'd at my fathers;
Where how he did preuaile, I shame to speake:
But truth is truth, large lengths of seas and shores
Betweene my father, and my mother lay,
As I haue heard my father speake himselfe
When this same lusty gentleman was got:
Vpon his death-bed he by will bequeath'd
His lands to me, and tooke it on his death
That this my mothers sonne was none of his;
And if he were, he came into the world
Full fourteene weekes before the course of time:
Then good my Liedge let me haue what is mine,
My fathers land, as was my fathers will.

K.Iohn.
Sirra, your brother is Legittimate,
Your fathers wife did after wedlocke beare him:
And if she did play false, the fault was hers,
Which fault lyes on the hazards of all husbands
That marry wiues: tell me, how if my brother
Who as you say, tooke paines to get this sonne,
Had of your father claim'd this sonne for his,
Insooth, good friend, your father might haue kept
This Calfe, bred from his Cow from all the world:
Insooth he might: then if he were my brothers,
My brother might not claime him, nor your father
Being none of his, refuse him: this concludes,
My mothers sonne did get your fathers heyre,
Your fathers heyre must haue your fathers land.

Rob.
Shal then my fathers Will be of no force,
To dispossesse that childe which is not his.

Phil.
Of no more force to dispossesse me sir,
Then was his will to get me, as I think.

Eli.
Whether hadst thou rather be a Faulconbridge,
And like thy brother to enioy thy land:
Or the reputed sonne of Cordelion,
Lord of thy presence, and no land beside.

Bast.
Madam, and if my brother had my shape
And I had his, sir Roberts his like him,
And if my legs were two such riding rods,
My armes, such eele-skins stuft, my face so thin,
That in mine eare I durst not sticke a rose,
Lest men should say, looke where three farthings goes,
And to his shape were heyre to all this land,
Would I might neuer stirre from off this place,
I would giue it euery foot to haue this face:
It would not be sir nobbe in any case.

Elinor.
I like thee well: wilt thou forsake thy fortune,
Bequeath thy land to him, and follow me?
I am a Souldier, and now bound to France.

Bast.
Brother, take you my land, Ile take my chance;
Your face hath got fiue hundred pound a yeere,
Yet sell your face for fiue pence and 'tis deere:
Madam, Ile follow you vnto the death.

Elinor.
Nay, I would haue you go before me thither.

Bast.
Our Country manners giue our betters way.

K.Iohn.
What is thy name?

Bast.
Philip my Liege, so is my name begun,
Philip, good old Sir Roberts wiues eldest sonne.

K.Iohn.
From henceforth beare his name / Whose forme thou bearest:
Kneele thou downe Philip, but rise more great,
Arise Sir Richard, and Plantagenet.

Bast.
Brother by th' mothers side, giue me your hand,
My father gaue me honor, yours gaue land:
Now blessed be the houre by night or day
When I was got, Sir Robert was away.

Ele.
The very spirit of Plantaginet:
I am thy grandame Richard, call me so.

Bast.
Madam by chance, but not by truth, what tho;
Something about a little from the right,
In at the window, or else ore the hatch:
Who dares not stirre by day, must walke by night,
And haue is haue, how euer men doe catch:
Neere or farre off, well wonne is still well shot,
And I am I, how ere I was begot.

K.Iohn.
Goe, Faulconbridge, now hast thou thy desire,
A landlesse Knight, makes thee a landed Squire:
Come Madam, and come Richard, we must speed
For France, for France, for it is more then need.

Bast.
Brother adieu, good fortune come to thee,
For thou wast got i'th way of honesty.
Exeunt all but bastard.
Bast. A foot of Honor better then I was,
But many a many foot of Land the worse.
Well, now can I make any Ioane a Lady,
Good den Sir Richard, Godamercy fellow,
And if his name be George, Ile call him Peter;
For new made honor doth forget mens names:
'Tis two respectiue, and too sociable
For your conuersion, now your traueller,
Hee and his tooth-picke at my worships messe,
And when my knightly stomacke is suffis'd,
Why then I sucke my teeth, and catechize
My picked man of Countries: my deare sir,
Thus leaning on mine elbow I begin,
I shaIl beseeeh you; that is question now,
And then comes answer like an Absey booke:
O sir, sayes answer, at your best command,
At your employment, at your seruice sir:
No sir, saies question, I sweet sir at yours,
And so ere answer knowes what question would,
Sauing in Dialogue of Complement,
And talking of the Alpes and Appenines,
The Perennean and the riuer Poe,
It drawes toward fupper in conclusion so.
But this is worshipfull society,
And fits the mounting spirit like my selfe;
For he is but a bastard to the time
That doth not smoake of obseruation,
And so am I whether I smacke or no:
And not alone in habit and deuice,
Exterior forme, outward accoutrement;
But from the inward motion to deliuer
Sweet, sweet, sweet poyson for the ages tooth,
Which though I will not practice to deceiue,
Yet to auoid deceit I meane to learne;
For it shall strew the footsteps of my rising:
But who comes in such haste in riding robes?
What woman post is this? hath she no husband
That will take paines to blow a horne before her?
Enter Lady Faulconbridge and Iames Gurney.
O me, 'tis my mother: how now good Lady,
What brings you heere to Court so hastily?

Lady.
Where is that slaue thy brother? where is he?
That holds in chase mine honour vp and downe.



My brother Robert, old Sir Roberts sonne:
Colbrand the Gyant, that same mighty man,
Is it Sir Roberts sonne that you seeke so?

Lady.
Sir Roberts sonne, I thou vnreuerend boy,
Sir Roberts sonne? why scorn'st thou at sir Robert?
He is Sir Roberts sonne, and so art thou.

Bast.
Iames Gournie, wilt thou giue vs leaue a while?

Gour.
Good leaue good Philip.

Bast.
Philip, sparrow, Iames,
There's toyes abroad, anon Ile tell thee more.
Exit Iames.
Madam, I was not old Sir Roberts sonne,
Sir Robert might haue eat his part in me
Vpon good Friday, and nere broke his fast:
Sir Robert could doe well, marrie to confesse
Could get me sir Robert could not doe it;
We know his handy-worke, therefore good mother
To whom am I beholding for these limmes?
Sir Robert neuer holpe to make this legge.

Lady.
Hast thou conspired with thy brother too,
That for thine owne gaine shouldst defend mine honor?
What meanes this scorne, thou most vntoward knaue?

Bast.
Knight, knight good mother, Basilisco-like:
What, I am dub'd, I haue it on my shoulder:
But mother, I am not Sir Roberts sonne,
I haue disclaim'd Sir Robert and my land,
Legitimation, name, and all is gone;
Then good my mother, let me know my father,
Some proper man I hope, who was it mother?

Lady.
Hast thou denied thy selfe a Faulconbridge?

Bast.
As faithfully as I denie the deuill.

Lady.
King Richard Cordelion was thy father,
By long and vehement suit I was seduc'd
To make roome for him in my husbands bed:
Heauen lay not my transgression to my charge,
That art the issue of my deere offence
Which was so strongly vrg'd past my defence.

Bast.
Now by this light were I to get againe,
Madam I would not wish a better father:
Some sinnes doe beare their priuiledge on earth,
And so doth yours: your fault, was not your follie,
Needs must you lay your heart at his dispose,
Subiected tribute to commanding loue,
Against whose furie and vnmatched force,
The awlesse Lion could not wage the fight,
Nor keepe his Princely heart from Richards hand:
He that perforce robs Lions of their hearts,
May easily winne a womans: aye my mother,
With all my heart I thanke thee for my father:
Who liues and dares but say, thou didst not well
When I was got, Ile send his soule to hell.
Come Lady I will shew thee to my kinne,
And they shall say, when Richard me begot,
If thou hadst sayd him nay, it had beene sinne;
Who sayes it was, he lyes, I say twas not.
Exeunt.
Modern text
Act I, Scene I
Enter King John, Queen Eleanor, Pembroke, Essex,
and Salisbury, with Chatillon of France

KING JOHN
Now, say, Chatillon, what would France with us?

CHATILLON
Thus, after greeting, speaks the King of France,
In my behaviour, to the majesty,
The borrowed majesty, of England here.

QUEEN ELEANOR
A strange beginning – ‘ borrowed majesty ’!

KING JOHN
Silence, good mother. Hear the embassy.

CHATILLON
Philip of France, in right and true behalf
Of thy deceased brother Geoffrey's son,
Arthur Plantagenet, lays most lawful claim
To this fair island and the territories,
To Ireland, Poictiers, Anjou, Touraine, Maine,
Desiring thee to lay aside the sword
Which sways usurpingly these several titles,
And put the same into young Arthur's hand,
Thy nephew and right royal sovereign.

KING JOHN
What follows if we disallow of this?

CHATILLON
The proud control of fierce and bloody war,
To enforce these rights so forcibly withheld.

KING JOHN
Here have we war for war and blood for blood,
Controlment for controlment. So answer France.

CHATILLON
Then take my King's defiance from my mouth,
The farthest limit of my embassy.

KING JOHN
Bear mine to him, and so depart in peace.
Be thou as lightning in the eyes of France;
For ere thou canst report I will be there,
The thunder of my cannon shall be heard.
So, hence! Be thou the trumpet of our wrath
And sullen presage of your own decay.
An honourable conduct let him have.
Pembroke, look to't. Farewell, Chatillon.
Exeunt Chatillon and Pembroke

QUEEN ELEANOR
What now, my son? Have I not ever said
How that ambitious Constance would not cease
Till she had kindled France and all the world
Upon the right and party of her son?
This might have been prevented and made whole
With very easy arguments of love,
Which now the manage of two kingdoms must
With fearful bloody issue arbitrate.

KING JOHN
Our strong possession and our right for us.

QUEEN ELEANOR
(to King John)
Your strong possession much more than your right,
Or else it must go wrong with you and me.
So much my conscience whispers in your ear,
Which none but heaven, and you and I, shall hear.
Enter a sheriff, who whispers to Essex

ESSEX
My liege, here is the strangest controversy,
Come from the country to be judged by you,
That e'er I heard. Shall I produce the men?

KING JOHN
Let them approach.
Exit sheriff
Our abbeys and our priories shall pay
This expeditious charge.
Enter Robert Faulconbridge and Philip, his bastard
brother
What men are you?

BASTARD
Your faithful subject I, a gentleman,
Born in Northamptonshire, and eldest son,
As I suppose, to Robert Faulconbridge,
A soldier, by the honour-giving hand
Of Coeur-de-lion knighted in the field.

KING JOHN
What art thou?

ROBERT FAULCONBRIDGE
The son and heir to that same Faulconbridge.

KING JOHN
Is that the elder, and art thou the heir?
You came not of one mother then, it seems.

BASTARD
Most certain of one mother, mighty King –
That is well known; and, as I think, one father.
But for the certain knowledge of that truth
I put you o'er to heaven, and to my mother;
Of that I doubt, as all men's children may.

QUEEN ELEANOR
Out on thee, rude man! Thou dost shame thy mother,
And wound her honour, with this diffidence.

BASTARD
I, madam? No, I have no reason for it.
That is my brother's plea, and none of mine;
The which if he can prove, 'a pops me out
At least from fair five hundred pound a year.
Heaven guard my mother's honour, and my land!

KING JOHN
A good blunt fellow! Why, being younger born,
Doth he lay claim to thine inheritance?

BASTARD
I know not why, except to get the land –
But once he slandered me with bastardy.
But whe'er I be as true begot or no,
That still I lay upon my mother's head.
But that I am as well begot, my liege –
Fair fall the bones that took the pains for me! –
Compare our faces and be judge yourself.
If old Sir Robert did beget us both
And were our father, and this son like him,
O old Sir Robert, father, on my knee
I give heaven thanks I was not like to thee!

KING JOHN
Why, what a madcap hath heaven lent us here!

QUEEN ELEANOR
(to King John)
He hath a trick of Coeur-de-lion's face;
The accent of his tongue affecteth him.
Do you not read some tokens of my son
In the large composition of this man?

KING JOHN
(to Queen Eleanor)
Mine eye hath well examined his parts
And finds them perfect Richard. (to Robert Faulconbridge) Sirrah, speak.
What doth move you to claim your brother's land?

BASTARD
(aside)
Because he hath a half-face like my father!
With half that face would he have all my land –
A half-faced groat, five hundred pound a year!

ROBERT FAULCONBRIDGE
My gracious liege, when that my father lived,
Your brother did employ my father much –

BASTARD
(aside)
Well, sir, by this you cannot get my land.
Your tale must be how he employed my mother.

ROBERT FAULCONBRIDGE
– And once dispatched him in an embassy
To Germany, there with the Emperor
To treat of high affairs touching that time.
Th' advantage of his absence took the King
And in the meantime sojourned at my father's,
Where how he did prevail I shame to speak –
But truth is truth. Large lengths of seas and shores
Between my father and my mother lay,
As I have heard my father speak himself,
When this same lusty gentleman was got.
Upon his death-bed he by will bequeathed
His lands to me, and took it on his death
That this, my mother's son, was none of his;
And if he were, he came into the world
Full fourteen weeks before the course of time.
Then, good my liege, let me have what is mine,
My father's land, as was my father's will.

KING JOHN
Sirrah, your brother is legitimate.
Your father's wife did after wedlock bear him,
And if she did play false, the fault was hers –
Which fault lies on the hazards of all husbands
That marry wives. Tell me, how if my brother,
Who, as you say, took pains to get this son,
Had of your father claimed this son for his?
In sooth, good friend, your father might have kept
This calf, bred from his cow, from all the world;
In sooth he might. Then, if he were my brother's,
My brother might not claim him, nor your father,
Being none of his, refuse him. This concludes:
My mother's son did get your father's heir;
Your father's heir must have your father's land.

ROBERT FAULCONBRIDGE
Shall then my father's will be of no force
To dispossess that child which is not his?

BASTARD
Of no more force to dispossess me, sir,
Than was his will to get me, as I think.

QUEEN ELEANOR
Whether hadst thou rather be: a Faulconbridge,
And like thy brother, to enjoy thy land;
Or the reputed son of Coeur-de-lion,
Lord of thy presence, and no land beside?

BASTARD
Madam, an if my brother had my shape
And I had his – Sir Robert's his, like him;
And if my legs were two such riding-rods,
My arms such eel-skins stuffed, my face so thin
That in mine ear I durst not stick a rose
Lest men should say ‘ Look where three-farthings goes!’
And, to his shape, were heir to all this land –
Would I might never stir from off this place,
I would give it every foot to have this face;
I would not be Sir Nob in any case!

QUEEN ELEANOR
I like thee well. Wilt thou forsake thy fortune,
Bequeath thy land to him, and follow me?
I am a soldier and now bound to France.

BASTARD
Brother, take you my land, I'll take my chance.
Your face hath got five hundred pound a year,
Yet sell your face for fivepence and 'tis dear.
Madam, I'll follow you unto the death.

QUEEN ELEANOR
Nay, I would have you go before me thither.

BASTARD
Our country manners give our betters way.

KING JOHN
What is thy name?

BASTARD
Philip, my liege, so is my name begun;
Philip, good old sir Robert's wife's eldest son.

KING JOHN
From henceforth bear his name whose form thou bearest:
Kneel thou down Philip, but rise more great –
Arise Sir Richard, and Plantagenet.

BASTARD
Brother, by th' mother's side, give me your hand.
My father gave me honour, yours gave land.
Now blessed be the hour, by night or day,
When I was got, Sir Robert was away!

QUEEN ELEANOR
The very spirit of Plantagenet!
I am thy grandam, Richard. Call me so.

BASTARD
Madam, by chance but not by truth; what though?
Something about, a little from the right,
In at the window, or else o'er the hatch;
Who dares not stir by day must walk by night,
And have is have, however men do catch;
Near or far off, well won is still well shot,
And I am I, howe'er I was begot.

KING JOHN
Go, Faulconbridge. Now hast thou thy desire;
A landless knight makes thee a landed squire.
Come, madam, and come, Richard, we must speed
For France, for France, for it is more than need.

BASTARD
Brother, adieu. Good fortune come to thee,
For thou wast got i'th' way of honesty!
Exeunt all but the Bastard
A foot of honour better than I was,
But many a many foot of land the worse!
Well, now can I make any Joan a lady.
‘ Good den, Sir Richard!’ – ‘ God 'a' mercy, fellow!’ –
And if his name be George, I'll call him Peter;
For new-made honour doth forget men's names –
'Tis too respective and too sociable
For your conversion. Now your traveller,
He and his toothpick at my worship's mess,
And when my knightly stomach is sufficed,
Why then I suck my teeth and catechise
My picked man of countries: ‘ My dear sir ’ –
Thus, leaning on mine elbow, I begin –
‘ I shall beseech you ’ – that is question now;
And then comes answer like an Absey book:
‘ O sir,’ says answer, ‘ at your best command;
At your employment; at your service, sir.’
‘ No, sir,’ says question, ‘ I, sweet sir, at yours.’
And so, ere answer knows what question would,
Saving in dialogue of compliment,
And talking of the Alps and Apennines,
The Pyrenean and the River Po,
It draws toward supper in conclusion so.
But this is worshipful society,
And fits the mounting spirit like myself;
For he is but a bastard to the time
That doth not smack of observation.
And so am I – whether I smack or no,
And not alone in habit and device,
Exterior form, outward accoutrement,
But from the inward motion – to deliver
Sweet, sweet, sweet poison for the age's tooth;
Which, though I will not practise to deceive,
Yet to avoid deceit I mean to learn;
For it shall strew the footsteps of my rising.
But who comes in such haste in riding robes?
What woman-post is this? Hath she no husband
That will take pains to blow a horn before her?
Enter Lady Faulconbridge and James Gurney
O me, 'tis my mother! How now, good lady?
What brings you here to court so hastily?

LADY FAULCONBRIDGE
Where is that slave thy brother? Where is he
That holds in chase mine honour up and down?

BASTARD
My brother Robert? Old Sir Robert's son?
Colbrand the Giant, that same mighty man?
Is it Sir Robert's son that you seek so?

LADY FAULCONBRIDGE
Sir Robert's son? – Ay, thou unreverend boy,
Sir Roberts son. Why scornest thou at Sir Robert?
He is Sir Robert's son, and so art thou.

BASTARD
James Gurney, wilt thou give us leave a while?

GURNEY
Good leave, good Philip.

BASTARD
Philip? – Sparrow! James,
There's toys abroad. Anon I'll tell thee more.
Exit Gurney
Madam, I was not old Sir Robert's son.
Sir Robert might have eat his part in me
Upon Good Friday and ne'er broke his fast.
Sir Robert could do well – marry, to confess –
Could he get me! Sir Robert Faulconbridge could not do it!
We know his handiwork. Therefore, good mother,
To whom am I beholding for these limbs?
Sir Robert never holp to make this leg.

LADY FAULCONBRIDGE
Hast thou conspired with thy brother too,
That for thine own gain shouldst defend mine honour?
What means this scorn, thou most untoward knave?

BASTARD
Knight, knight, good mother, Basilisco-like!
What! I am dubbed, I have it on my shoulder.
But, mother, I am not Sir Robert's son.
I have disclaimed Sir Robert and my land;
Legitimation, name, and all is gone.
Then, good my mother, let me know my father;
Some proper man, I hope. Who was it, mother?

LADY FAULCONBRIDGE
Hast thou denied thyself a Faulconbridge?

BASTARD
As faithfully as I deny the devil.

LADY FAULCONBRIDGE
King Richard Coeur-de-lion was thy father.
By long and vehement suit I was seduced
To make room for him in my husband's bed.
Heaven lay not my transgression to my charge!
Thou art the issue of my dear offence,
Which was so strongly urged past my defence.

BASTARD
Now, by this light, were I to get again,
Madam, I would not wish a better father.
Some sins do bear their privilege on earth,
And so doth yours. Your fault was not your folly.
Needs must you lay your heart at his dispose,
Subjected tribute to commanding love,
Against whose fury and unmatched force
The aweless lion could not wage the fight,
Nor keep his princely heart from Richard's hand.
He that perforce robs lions of their hearts
May easily win a woman's. Ay, my mother,
With all my heart I thank thee for my father.
Who lives and dares but say thou didst not well
When I was got, I'll send his soul to hell.
Come, lady, I will show thee to my kin,
And they shall say, when Richard me begot,
If thou hadst said him nay, it had been sin.
Who says it was, he lies – I say 'twas not!
Exeunt
SHAKESPEARE'S WORDS © 2018 DAVID CRYSTAL & BEN CRYSTAL