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  • Title: Henry VI, Part 1 (Modern)
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    Author: William Shakespeare
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    Henry VI, Part 1 (Modern)

    675 Enter [on the walls] a Sergeant of a band, with two Sentinels.
    Sirs, take your places, and be vigilant.
    If any noise or soldier you perceive
    Near to the walls, by some apparent sign
    Let us have knowledge at the court of guard.
    Sergeant you shall.
    [Exit Sergeant.]
    Thus are poor servitors,
    When others sleep upon their quiet beds,
    Constrained to watch in darkness, rain, and cold.
    Enter [Lord] Talbot, [the Dukes of] Bedford and Burgundy [and Soldiers], with scaling ladders, their drums beating a 685dead march.
    Lord regent, and redoubted Burgundy,
    By whose approach the regions of Artois,
    Walloon, and Picardy are friends to us,
    This happy night the Frenchmen are secure,
    690Having all day caroused and banqueted.
    Embrace we then this opportunity,
    As fitting best to quittance their deceit,
    Contrived by art and baleful sorcery.
    Coward of France. How much he wrongs his fame,
    695Despairing of his own arm's fortitude,
    To join with witches and the help of hell.
    Traitors have never other company.
    But what's that "Pucelle" whom they term so pure?
    A maid, they say.
    A maid? And be so martial?
    Pray God she prove not masculine ere long.
    If underneath the standard of the French
    She carry armor, as she hath begun.
    Well, let them practice and converse with spirits.
    705God is our fortress, in whose conquering name
    Let us resolve to scale their flinty bulwarks.
    Ascend, brave Talbot. We will follow thee.
    Not altogether. Better far, I guess,
    That we do make our entrance several ways;
    710That, if it chance the one of us do fail,
    The other yet may rise against their force.
    Agreed. I'll to yond corner.
    And I to this.
    [Exeunt severally Bedford and Burgundy with some Soldiers.]
    And here will Talbot mount, or make his grave.
    715Now Salisbury; for thee, and for the right
    Of English Henry, shall this night appear
    How much in duty I am bound to both.
    [Talbot and some Soldiers assault the walls.]
    Arm. Arm. The enemy doth make assault.
    [Exeunt above.]
    English Soldiers
    Cry. Saint George! A Talbot!
    720 [Alarum.] The French [Soldiers] leap o'er the walls in their shirts [and exeunt]. Enter several ways [the] Bastard [of Orléans, the Duke of] Alencon, [and] Reignier [Duke of Anjou], half ready and half unready.
    How now my Lords? What, all unready so?
    Unready? Aye, and glad we scaped so well.
    'Twas time, I trow, to wake and leave our beds,
    Hearing alarums at our chamber doors.
    Of all exploits since first I followed arms
    Ne'er heard I of a warlike enterprise
    More venturous, or desperate than this.
    I think this Talbot be a fiend of hell.
    If not of hell, the heavens sure favor him.
    Here cometh Charles. I marvel how he sped?
    Enter Charles [the Dauphin] and Joan [la Pucelle].
    Tut, holy Joan was his defensive guard.
    Is this thy cunning, thou deceitful dame?
    Didst thou at first, to flatter us withal,
    Make us partakers of a little gain
    That now our loss might be ten times so much?
    Wherefore is Charles impatient with his friend?
    740At all times will you have my power alike?
    Sleeping or waking, must I still prevail,
    Or will you blame and lay the fault on me?
    Improvident soldiers, had your watch been good,
    This sudden mischief never could have fall'n.
    Duke of Alencon, this was your default,
    That, being captain of the watch tonight,
    Did look no better to that weighty charge.
    Had all your quarters been as safely kept
    As that whereof I had the government,
    750We had not been thus shamefully surprised.
    Mine was secure.
    And so was mine, my lord.
    And for myself, most part of all this night
    Within her quarter and mine own precinct
    755I was employed in passing to and fro
    About relieving of the sentinels.
    Then how or which way should they first break in?
    Question, my lords, no further of the case,
    How or which way. 'Tis sure they found some place
    760But weakly guarded, where the breach was made.
    And now there rests no other shift but this,
    To gather our soldiers, scattered and dispersed,
    And lay new platforms to endamage them.
    765 Alarum. Enter [an English] Soldier, crying.
    A Talbot! A Talbot!
    They [the French] fly, leaving their clothes behind.
    I'll be so bold to take what they have left.
    The cry of "Talbot" serves me for a sword,
    For I have loaden me with many spoils,
    770Using no other weapon but his name.
    Exit [with abandoned clothes].