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This, in our foresaid holy father's name,
King John. What earthly name to interrogatories
15 So slight, unworthy and ridiculous, To charge me to an answer, as the pope. Tell him this tale; and from the mouth of England Add thus much more: that no Italian priest Shall tithe or toll in our dominions; But as we under heaven are supreme head, So under him that great supremacy, Where we do reign, we will alone uphold, Without the assistance of a mortal hand: So tell the pope; all reverence set apart
25 To him, and his usurp'd authority. King Philip. Brother of England, you blaspheme
in this. King John. Though you and all the kings of
Christendom Are led so grossly by this meddling priest, Dreading the curse that money may buy out; And, by the merit of vile gold, dross, dust, Purchase corrupted pardon of a man, Who in that sale sells pardon from himself; Though you and all the rest so grossly led This juggling witchcraft with revenue cherish; 35 Yet I alone, alone do me oppose Against the pope, and count his friends my foes.
Pandulph. Then, by the lawful power that I have, Thou shalt stand curs'd and excommunicate: And blessed shall he be that doth revolt From his allegiance to a heretic; And meritorious shall that hand be callid, Canonized and worshipp'd as a saint, That takes away by any secret course Thy hateful life.
ACT V, SCENE i.
Pandulph. [Giving JOHN the crown.] Take again
ACT V, SCENE ii.
That so stood out against the holy church,
95 After young Arthur, claim this land for mine; And, now it is half-conquer'd, must I back Because that John hath made his peace with Rome? Am I Rome's slave? What penny hath Rome borne, What men provided, what munition sent, To underprop this action ? is 't not I That undergo this charge? who else but I, And such as to my claim are liable, Sweat in this business and maintain this war? Have I not heard these islanders shout out, Vive le roy! as I have bank'd their towns ? Have I not here the best cards for the game To win this easy match play'd for a crown?
106. bank'd) besieged.
And shall I now give o'er the yielded set ?
W. SHAKESPEARE (from King John).
At the death of John the English barons soon began to desert the invading army of the French, and rallied round the boy-king Henry III, who became the centre of national hopes and aspirations.
This England never did, nor never shall,
W. SHAKESPEARE (from King John).
SIMON DE MONTFORT
The misgovernment of Henry III had led to civil war, which, by the battle of Lewes in 1264, left Simon de Montfort practical ruler of England. In 1265 he summoned the first Parliament in which representatives of both counties and towns sat together. But his rule did not last for many months, and at the battle of Evesham he was defeated by the royalist party under Gloucester and Prince Edward (afterwards Edward I). Montfort himself was killed in the battle, but he was for long afterwards regarded by the English people as a martyr for justice and religion. The verses which follow are a translation of a contemporary poem.
IN song my grief shall find relief,
Sad is my verse and rude;
Who fell for England's good.
For us they dared to die;
Their wounds for vengeance cry.
Well skilld the war to guide;
Fair England's flower and pride.
Our noblest chiefs had bled.
Their dastard vassals fled.
They hew'd their desperate way:
On Evesham's plain, &c.
Brave earl, one palm was given;