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Salvation to the extremest generation
Of men innumerable, they talk of peace !
Such peace as Canaan found, let Scotland now:
For, by that Christ who came to bring a sword,
Not peace, upon the earth, and gave command
To his disciples at the passover
That each should sell his robe and buy a

sword,-
Once strip that minister of naked wrath,
And it shall never sleep in peace again 269
Till Scotland bend or break.

KING.

My Lord Archbishop, Do what thou wilt and what thou canst in this. Thy earthly even as thy heavenly King Gives thee large power in his unquiet realm. But we want money, and my mind misgives me That for so great an enterprise, as yet, We are unfurnished.

STRAFFORD,

Yet it may not long Rest on our wills.

COTTINGTON.

The expenses Of gathering ship-money, and of distraining For every petty rate (for we encounter A desperate opposition inch by inch 280 In every warehouse and on every farm), Have swallowed up the gross sum of the im

posts; So that, though felt as a most grievous scourge Upon the land, they stand us in small stead As touches the receipt.

STRAFFORD.

'Tis a conclusion Most arithmetical: and thence you infer Perhaps the assembling of a parliament. Now, if a man should call his dearest enemies To sit in licensed judgment on his life, His Majesty might wisely take that course. 290

(Aside to COTTINGTON) It is enough to expect from these lean imposts That they perform the office of a scourge, Without more profit. (Aloud) Fines and con

fiscations, And a forced loan from the refractory city, Will fill our coffers : and the golden love Of loyal gentlemen and noble friends For the worshipped father of our common

country, With contributions from the catholics, Will make Rebellion pale in our excess. Be these the expedients until time and wisdom Shall frame a settled state of government. 301

LAUD. And weak expedients they! Have we not

drained All, till the

which seemed A mine exhaustless ?

STRAFFORD.

And the love which is, If loyal hearts could turn their blood to gold.

LAUD. Both now grow barren : and I speak it not As loving parliaments, which, as they have been In the right hand of bold bad mighty kings The scourges of the bleeding Church, I hate. Methinks they scarcely can deserve our fear. 310

STRAFFORD. O my dear liege, take back the wealth thou

gavest: With that, take all I held, but as in trust For thee, of mine inheritance: leave me but This unprovided body for thy service, And a mind dedicated to no care Except thy safety :—but assemble not A parliament. Hundreds will bring, like me, Their fortunes, as they would their blood, before ...

King. No! thou who judgest them art but one. Alas! We should be too much out of love with

Heaven, Did this vile world show many such as thee, Thou perfect, just and honourable man! Never shall it be said that Charles of England Stripped those he loved for fear of those he

scorns; Nor will he so much misbecome his throne As to impoverish those who most adorn And best defend it. That you urge, dear

Strafford, Inclines me rather ...

320

QUEEN.

To a parliament ?
Is this thy firmness ? and thou wilt preside
Over a knot of censurers,

330 To the unswearing of thy best resolves, And choose the worst, when the worst comes

too soon? Plight not the worst before the worst must

come. Oh wilt thou smile whilst our ribald foes,

Dressed in their own usurped authority,
Sharpen their tongues on Henrietta's fame?
It is enough! Thou lovest me no more!

(Weeps.)

King.
Oh Henrietta ! (They talk apart.)

COTTINGTON (to LAUD).

Money we have none: And all the expedients of my Lord of Strafford Will scarcely meet the arrears.

LAUD.

Without delay An army must be sent into the north; 341 Followed by a Commission of the Church, With amplest power to quench in fire and

blood, And tears and terror, and the pity of hell, The intenser wrath of Heresy. God will give Victory; and victory over Scotland give The lion England tamed into our hands. That will lend power, and power bring gold.

COTTINGTON.

Meanwhile We must begin first where your Grace leaves

off.

Gold must give power, or...

LAUD.

I am not averse 350 From the assembling of a parliament. Strong actions and smooth words might teach

them soon The lesson to obey. And are they not A bubble fashioned by the monarch's mouth,

The birth of one light breath? If they serve no

purpose, A word dissolves them.

STRAFFORD.

The engine of parliaments Might be deferred until I can bring over The Irish regiments: they will serve to assure The issue of the war against the Scots. And, this game won—which if lost, all is lostGather these chosen leaders of the rebels, 361 And call them, if you will, a parliament.

KING. Oh be our feet still tardy to shed blood, Guilty though it may be! I would still spare The stubborn country of my birth, and ward From countenances which I loved in youth The wrathful Church's lacerating hand. (T. LAUD) Have you o'erlooked the other articles ?

Re-enter ARCHY.

LAUD. Hazlerig, Hampden, Pym, young Harry Vane, Cromwell, and other rebels of less note, 370 Intend to sail with the next favouring wind For the Plantations.

ARCHY.

Where they think to found A commonwealth like Gonzalo's in the play, Gynæcocænic and pantisocratic.

KING. What's that, sirrah ?

ARCHY.

New devil's politics.

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