Act II. Scene I.Before Orleans.
Enter to the Gates, a French Sergeant, and
Serg. 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.
First Sent. Sergeant, you shall.
Thus are poor servitors
When others sleep upon their quiet beds
Constrain'd to watch in darkness, rain, and cold.
Enter TALBOT, BEDFORD, BURGUNDY,
and Forces with seating-ladders; their drums
beating a dead march.
Tal. 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,
Having all day carous'd and banqueted:
Embrace we then this opportunity,
As fitting best to quittance their deceit
Contriv'd by art and baleful sorcery.
Bed. Coward of France! how much he wrongs
Despairing of his own arm's fortitude,
To join with witches and the help of hell!
Bur. Traitors have never other company.
But what's that Pucelle whom they term so pure?
Tal. A maid, they say.
Bed. A maid, and be so martial!
Bur. Pray God she prove not masculine ere
If underneath the standard of the French
She carry armour, as she hath begun.
Tal. Well, let them practise and converse
God is our fortress, in whose conquering name
Let us resolve to scale their flinty bulwarks.
Bed. Ascend, brave Talbot; we will follow
Tal. Not all together: better far, I guess,
That we do make our entrance several ways,
That if it chance the one of us do fail,
The other yet may rise against their force.
Bed. Agreed. I'll to yond corner.
Bur. And I to this.
Tal. And here will Talbot mount, or make
Now, Salisbury, for thee, and for the right
Of English Henry, shall this night appear
How much in duty I am bound to both.
[The English scale the walls, crying, 'Saint
George!' 'A Talbot!' and all enter the town.
First Sent. Arm, arm! the enemy doth make
The French leap over the Walls in their shirts.
Enter, several ways, BASTARD OF
ORLEANS, ALENÇON, and REIGNIER,
half ready, and half unready.
Alen. How now, my lords! what! all unready
Bast. Unready! ay, and glad we 'scap'd so
Reig. 'Twas time, I trow, to wake and leave
Hearing alarums at our chamber-doors.
Alen. Of all exploits since first I follow'd
Ne'er heard I of a war-like enterprise
More venturous or desperate than this.
Bast. I think this Talbot be a fiend of hell.
Reig. If not of hell, the heavens, sure, favour
Alen. Here cometh Charles: I marvel how
Bast. Tut! holy Joan was his defensive guard.
Enter CHARLES and JOAN LA PUCELLE.
Char. Is this thy cunning, thou deceitful
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?
Joan. Wherefore is Charles impatient with
At 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 fallen.
Char. Duke of Alençon, this was your default,
That, being captain of the watch to-night,
Did look no better to that weighty charge.
Alen. Had all your quarters been so safely
As that whereof I had the government,
We had not been thus shamefully surpris'd.
Bast. Mine was secure.
Reig. And so was mine, my lord.
Char. And for myself, most part of all this
Within her quarter and mine own precinct
I was employ'd in passing to and fro,
About relieving of the sentinels:
Then how or which way should they first break in?
Joan. Question, my lords, no further of the
How or which way: 'tis sure they found some
But weakly guarded, where the breach was made.
And now there rests no other shift but this;
To gather our soldiers, scatter'd and dispers'd,
And lay new platforms to endamage them.
Alarum. Enter an English Soldier, crying, 'A
Talbot! a Talbot!' They fly, leaving their
Sold. I'll be so bold to take what they have
The cry of Talbot serves me for a sword;
For I have loaden me with many spoils.
Using no other weapon but his name. [Exit.