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  • Title: Friar Bacon and Friar Bungay (Modern)
  • Textual editor: Christopher Matusiak
  • Performance editor: Peter Cockett
  • General editor: Helen Ostovich
  • Coordinating editor: Janelle Jenstad

  • Copyright Queen's Men Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: Robert Greene
    Editor (Text): Christopher Matusiak
    Editor (Performance): Peter Cockett
    Peer Reviewed

    Friar Bacon and Friar Bungay (Modern)

    1[Scene 1] [Video Sc.1]
    Enter [Prince Edward], malcontented, with Lacy, earl of Lincoln, John Warren, earl of Sussex, and Ermsby, gentleman, [and] Rafe Simnell, the king's fool.
    5Why looks my lord like to a troubled sky
    When heaven's bright shine is shadowed with a fog?
    Alate we ran the deer and through the launds
    Stripped with our nags the lofty frolic bucks
    That scudded 'fore the teisers like the wind.
    10Ne'er was the deer of merry Fressingfield
    So lustily pulled down by jolly mates,
    Nor shared the farmers such fat venison,
    So frankly dealt this hundred years before;
    Nor have I seen my lord more frolic in the chase,
    15And now changed to a melancholy dump.
    After the prince got to the Keeper's lodge
    And had been jocund in the house awhile,
    Tossing of ale and milk in country cans,
    Whether it was the country's sweet content,
    20Or else the bonny damsel filled us drink
    That seemed so stately in her stammel red,
    Or that a qualm did cross his stomach then,
    But straight he fell into his passions.
    Sirrah Rafe, what say you to your master?
    25Shall he thus all amort live malcontent?
    Hearest thou, Ned?-- Nay, look if he will speak to me.
    What say'st thou to me, fool?
    I prithee tell me, Ned, art thou in love with the 30Keeper's daughter?
    How if I be, what then?
    Why then, sirrah, I'll teach thee how to deceive love.
    How, Rafe?
    Marry, sirrah Ned, thou shalt put on my cap and 35my coat and my dagger, and I will put on thy clothes and thy sword, and so thou shalt be my fool.
    And what of this?
    Why so thou shalt beguile Love, for Love is such a proud scab that he will never meddle with fools nor children. Is 40not Rafe's counsel good, Ned?
    Tell me, Ned Lacy, didst thou mark the maid,
    How lively in her country weeds she looked?
    A bonnier wench all Suffolk cannot yield.
    All Suffolk? Nay, all England holds none such.
    Sirrah Will Ermsby, Ned is deceived.
    Why, Rafe?
    He says all England hath no such, and I say, and I'll stand to it, there is one better in Warwickshire.
    How provest thou that, Rafe?
    Why, is not the Abbot a learn├ęd man and hath read many books, and thinkest thou he hath not more learning than thou to choose a bonny wench? Yes, I warrant thee, by his whole grammar.
    A good reason, Rafe.
    I tell thee, Lacy, that her sparkling eyes
    Do lighten forth sweet love's alluring fire,
    And in her tresses she doth fold the looks
    Of such as gaze upon her golden hair;
    Her bashful white mixed with the morning's red
    60Luna doth boast upon her lovely cheeks;
    Her front is beauty's table, where she paints
    The glories of her gorgeous excellence;
    Her teeth are shelves of precious margarites,
    Richly enclosed with ruddy coral cleaves.
    65Tush, Lacy, she is beauty's overmatch,
    If thou survey'st her curious imagery.
    I grant, my lord, the damsel is as fair
    As simple Suffolk's homely towns can yield,
    But in the court be quainter dames than she,
    70Whose faces are enriched with honor's taint,
    Whose beauties stand upon the stage of fame,
    And vaunt their trophies in the courts of Love.
    Ah, Ned, but hadst thou watched her as myself,
    And seen the secret beauties of the maid,
    75Their courtly coyness were but foolery.
    Why, how watched you her, my lord?
    When as she swept like Venus through the house,
    And in her shape fast folded up my thoughts,
    Into the milk-house went I with the maid,
    80And there amongst the cream bowls she did shine
    As Pallas 'mongst her princely huswifery.
    She turned her smock over her lily arms
    And dived them into milk to run her cheese;
    But whiter than the milk her crystal skin,
    85Checked with lines of azure, made her blush,
    That art or nature durst bring for compare.
    Ermsby, if thou hadst seen, as I did note it well,
    How beauty played the huswife, how this girl
    Like Lucrece laid her fingers to the work,
    90Thou wouldst with Tarquin hazard Rome and all
    To win the lovely maid of Fressingfield.
    Sirrah Ned, wouldst fain have her?
    Ay, Rafe.
    Why, Ned, I have laid the plot in my head. Thou 95shalt have her already.
    I'll give thee a new coat an learn me that.
    Why, sirrah Ned, we'll ride to Oxford to Friar Bacon. Oh, he is a brave scholar, sirrah. They say he is a brave necromancer, that he can make women of devils, and he can juggle cats into 100costermongers.
    And how then, Rafe?
    Marry, sirrah, thou shalt go to him, and because thy father Harry shall not miss thee, he shall turn me into thee; and I'll to the court and I'll prince it out, and he shall make thee 105either a silken purse full of gold or else a fine wrought smock.
    But how shall I have the maid?
    Marry, sirrah, if thou be'st a silken purse full of gold, then on Sundays she'll hang thee by her side, and you must not say a word. Now, sir, when she comes into a great press of people, 110for fear of the cutpurse on a sudden she'll swap thee into her placket; then, sirrah, being there you may plead for yourself.
    Excellent policy!
    But how if I be a wrought smock?
    Then she'll put thee into her chest and lay thee 115into lavender, and upon some good day she'll put thee on, and at night when you go to bed, then being turned from a smock to a man, you may make up the match.
    Wonderfully wisely counseled, Rafe.
    Rafe shall have a new coat.
    God thank you when I have it on my back, Ned.
    Lacy, the fool hath laid a perfect plot
    For why our country Margaret is so coy
    And stands so much upon her honest points
    That marriage or no market with the maid.
    125Ermsby, it must be necromantic spells
    And charms of art that must enchain her love,
    Or else shall Edward never win the girl.
    Therefore, my wags, we'll horse us in the morn,
    And post to Oxford to this jolly friar.
    130Bacon shall by his magic do this deed.
    Content, my lord; and that's a speedy way
    To wean these headstrong puppies from the teat.
    I am unknown, not taken for the prince;
    They only deem us frolic courtiers
    135That revel thus among our liege's game;
    Therefore I have devised a policy.
    Lacy, thou know'st next Friday is Saint James's,
    And then the country flocks to Harleston Fair;
    Then will the Keeper's daughter frolic there,
    140And overshine the troupe of all the maids
    That come to see and to be seen that day.
    Haunt thee, disguised among the country swains;
    Feign thou'rt a farmer's son, not far from thence;
    Espy her loves, and who she liketh best;
    145Cote him, and court her to control the clown.
    Say that the courtier tir├ęd all in green,
    That helped her handsomely to run her cheese
    And filled her father's lodge with venison,
    Commends him, and sends fairings to herself.
    150Buy something worthy of her parentage,
    Not worth her beauty, for, Lacy, then the fair
    Affords no jewel fitting for the maid.
    And when thou talkest of me, note if she blush;
    Oh, then she loves; but if her cheeks wax pale,
    155Disdain it is. Lacy, send how she fares,
    And spare no time nor cost to win her loves.
    I will, my lord, so execute this charge
    As if that Lacy were in love with her.
    Send letters speedily to Oxford of the news.
    And, sirrah Lacy, buy me a thousand thousand million of fine bells.
    What wilt thou do with them, Rafe?
    Marry, every time that Ned sighs for the Keeper's daughter, I'll tie a bell about him, and so within three or four 165days I will send word to his father, Harry, that his son and my master Ned is become Love's morris dance.
    Well, Lacy, look with care unto thy charge,
    And I will haste to Oxford to the friar,
    That he by art and thou by secret gifts
    170Mayst make me lord of merry Fressingfield.
    God send your honor your heart's desire.
    [Scene 2] [Video Sc.2]
    Enter Friar Bacon with Miles, his poor scholar, [following] with books under his arm; with them Burden, Mason, Clement, three doctors.
    175Friar Bacon
    Miles, where are you?
    Hic sum doctissime et reverendissime doctor.
    Friar Bacon
    Attulisti nos libros meos de necromantia?
    Ecce quam bonum et quam jocundum, habitares libros in unum.
    180Friar Bacon
    Now, masters of our academic state
    That rule in Oxford viceroys in your place,
    Whose heads contain maps of the liberal arts,
    Spending your time in depth of learne}d skill,
    Why flock you thus to Bacon's secret cell,
    185A friar newly stalled in Brazennose?
    Say what's your mind that I may make reply.
    Bacon, we hear that long we have suspect,
    That thou art read in magic's mystery;
    In pyromancy to divine by flames;
    190To tell by hydromancy ebbs and tides;
    By aeromancy to discover doubts,
    To plain out questions as Apollo did.
    Friar Bacon
    Well, Master Burden, what of all this?
    Marry, sir, he doth but fulfill by rehearsing of these 195names the fable of the fox and the grapes: that which is above us pertains nothing to us.
    I tell thee, Bacon, Oxford makes report,
    Nay England, and the court of Henry says
    Thou'rt making of a brazen head by art,
    200Which shall unfold strange doubts and aphorisms
    And read a lecture in philosophy,
    And by the help of devils and ghastly fiends,
    Thou mean'st, ere many years or days be past,
    To compass England with a wall of brass.
    205Friar Bacon
    And what of this?
    What of this, master? Why, he doth speak mystically, for he knows if your skill fail to make a brazen head, yet Mother Waters' strong ale will fit his turn to make him have a copper nose.
    Bacon, we come not grieving at thy skill,
    But joying that our academy yields
    A man supposed the wonder of the world;
    For if thy cunning work these miracles,
    England and Europe shall admire thy fame,
    215And Oxford shall, in characters of brass
    And statues such as were built up in Rome,
    Eternize Friar Bacon for his art.
    Then, gentle Friar, tell us thy intent.
    Friar Bacon
    Seeing you come as friends unto the friar,
    220Resolve you doctors, Bacon can by books
    Make storming Boreas thunder from his cave,
    And dim fair Luna to a dark eclipse;
    The great arch-ruler, potentate of hell,
    Trembles when Bacon bids him or his fiends
    225Bow to the force of his pentageron.
    What art can work the frolic friar knows,
    And therefore will I turn my magic books
    And strain out necromancy to the deep.
    I have contrived and framed a head of brass
    230(I made Belcephon hammer out the stuff)
    And that by art shall read philosophy;
    And I will strengthen England by my skill
    That if ten Caesars lived and reigned in Rome,
    With all the legions Europe doth contain,
    235They should not touch a grass of English ground.
    The work that Ninus reared at Babylon,
    The brazen walls framed by Semiramis,
    Carved out like to the portal of the sun,
    Shall not be such as rings the English strand
    240From Dover to the marketplace of Rye.
    Is this possible?
    I'll bring ye two or three witnesses.
    What be those?
    Marry, sir, three or four as honest devils and good 245companions as any be in hell.
    No doubt but magic may do much in this,
    For he that reads but mathematic rules
    Shall find conclusions that avail to work
    Wonders that pass the common sense of men.
    But Bacon roves a bow beyond his reach,
    And tells of more than magic can perform,
    Thinking to get a fame by fooleries.
    Have I not passed as far in state of schools
    And read of many secrets? Yet to think
    255That heads of brass can utter any voice,
    Or more, to tell of deep philosophy--
    This is a fable Aesop had forgot.
    Friar Bacon
    Burden, thou wrong'st me in detracting thus;
    Bacon loves not to stuff himself with lies.
    260But tell me 'fore these doctors, if thou dare,
    Of certain questions I shall move to thee.
    I will. Ask what thou can.
    Marry, sir, he'll straight be on your pick-pack to know whether the feminine or the masculine gender be most 265worthy.
    Friar Bacon
    Were you not yesterday, Master Burden, at Henley upon the Thames?
    I was. What then?
    Friar Bacon
    What book studied you thereon all night?
    I? None at all; I read not there a line.
    Friar Bacon
    Then, doctors, Friar Bacon's art knows naught.
    What say you to this, Master Burden? Doth he not touch you?
    I pass not of his frivolous speeches.
    Nay, Master Burden, my master, ere he hath done with you, will turn you from a doctor to a dunce, and shake you so small that he will leave no more learning in you than is in Balaam's ass.
    Friar Bacon
    Masters, for that learned Burden's skill is deep,
    280And sore he doubts of Bacon's cabalism,
    I'll show you why he haunts to Henley oft,
    Not, doctors, for to taste the fragrant air,
    But there to spend the night in alchemy,
    To multiply with secret spells of art;
    285Thus private steals he learning from us all.
    To prove my sayings true, I'll show you straight
    The book he keeps at Henley for himself.
    Nay, now my master goes to conjuration, take heed.
    Friar Bacon
    Masters, stand still; fear not. I'll show you but his 290book.
    Here he conjures.magic book
    Per omnes deos infernales Belcephon.
    Enter a woman with a shoulder of mutton on a spit and a devil.
    Oh, master, cease your conjuration or you spoil all, for here's a she-devil come with a shoulder of mutton on a spit. You have marred the devil's supper; but no doubt he thinks our college fare is slender and so hath sent you his cook with a shoulder of mutton to make it exceed.
    Oh, where am I, or what's become of me?
    Friar Bacon
    What art thou?
    Hostess at Henley, mistress of the Bell.
    Friar Bacon
    How cam'st thou here?
    As I was in the kitchen 'mongst the maids,
    305Spitting the meat against supper for my guests,
    A motion moved me to look forth of door.
    No sooner had I pried into the yard
    But straight a whirlwind hoisted me from thence,
    And mounted me aloft unto the clouds.
    310As in a trance, I thought nor feare}d naught,
    Nor know I where or whether I was ta'en,
    Nor where I am, nor what these persons be.
    Friar Bacon
    No? Know you not Master Burden?
    Oh yes, good sir, he is my daily guest.
    315What, Master Burden, t'was but yesternight
    That you and I at Henley played at cards.
    I know not what we did. A pox of all conjuring
    Now, jolly friar, tell us, is this the book
    320that Burden is so careful to look on?
    Friar Bacon
    It is.-- But, Burden, tell me now,
    Thinkest thou that Bacon's necromantic skill
    Cannot perform his head and wall of brass,
    When he can fetch thine hostess in such post?
    I'll warrant you, master, if Master Burden could conjure as well as you, he would have his book every night from Henley to study on at Oxford.
    Burden, what, are you mated by this frolic friar?--
    Look how he droops; his guilty conscience
    330Drives him to bash and makes his hostess blush.
    Friar Bacon
    Well, mistress, for I will not have you missed,
    You shall to Henley to cheer up your guests
    'Fore supper 'gin.-- Burden, bid her adieu;
    Say farewell to your hostess 'fore she goes.--
    335[To the devil] Sirrah, away, and set her safe at home!
    Master Burden, when shall we see you at Henley?
    Exeunt Hostess and the devil.
    The devil take thee and Henley too.
    Master, shall I make a good motion?
    340Friar Bacon
    What's that?
    Marry, sir, now that my hostess is gone to provide supper, conjure up another spirit and send Doctor Burden flying after.
    Friar Bacon
    Thus, rulers of our academic state,
    345You have seen the friar frame his art by proof,
    And as the college called Brazennose
    Is under him and he the master there,
    So surely shall this head of brass be framed
    And yield forth strange and uncouth aphorisms;
    350And hell and Hecate shall fail the friar
    But I will circle England round with brass.
    So be it, et nunc et semper, amen.
    Exeunt omnes.
    [Scene 3] [Video Sc.3]
    Enter Margaret [and Joan], with Thomas, 355[Richard], and other clowns [following], [and] Lacy disguised in country apparel.
    By my troth, Margaret, here's a weather is able to make a man call his father whoreson. If this weather hold, we shall have hay good cheap and butter and cheese at Harleston will 360bear no price.
    Thomas, maids when they come to see the fair
    Count not to make a cope for dearth of hay.
    When we have turned our butter to the salt
    And set our cheese safely upon the racks,
    365Then let our fathers price it as they please.
    We country sluts of merry Fressingfield
    Come to buy needless naughts to make us fine,
    And look that young men should be frank this day
    And court us with such fairings as they can.
    370Phoebus is blithe and frolic looks from heaven
    As when he courted lovely Semele,
    Swearing the peddlers shall have empty packs
    If that fair weather may make chapmen buy.
    But, lovely Peggy, Semele is dead,
    375And therefore Phoebus from his palace pries,
    And, seeing such a sweet and seemly saint,
    Shows all his glories for to court yourself.
    This is a fairing, gentle sir, indeed,
    To soothe me up with such smooth flattery.
    380But learn of me, your scoffs too broad before.--
    Well, Joan, our beauties must abide their jests;
    We serve the turn in jolly Fressingfield .
    Margaret, a farmer's daughter for a farmer's son;
    I warrant you, the meanest of us both
    385Shall have a mate to lead us from the church.--
    But, Thomas, what's the news? What, in a dump?
    Give me your hand, we are near a peddler's shop.
    Out with your purse, we must have fairings now.
    Faith, Joan, and shall. I'll bestow a fairing on you, and 390then we will to the tavern and snap off a pint of wine or two.
    All this while Lacy whispers Margaret in the ear.
    Whence are you sir? Of Suffolk? For your terms
    are finer than the common sort of men.
    Faith, lovely girl, I am of Beccles by,
    395Your neighbor, not above six miles from hence,
    A farmer's son that never was so quaint
    But that he could do courtesy to such dames.
    But trust me, Margaret, I am sent in charge
    From him that reveled in your father's house
    400And filled his lodge with cheer and venison,
    Tir├ęd in green. He sent you this rich purse,
    His token that he helped you run your cheese
    And in the milk-house chatted with yourself.
    To me? You forget yourself.
    Women are often weak in memory.
    Oh, pardon, sir, I call to mind the man.
    'Twere little manners to refuse his gift,
    And yet I hope he sends it not for love,
    For we have little leisure to debate of that.
    What, Margaret, blush not. Maids must have their loves.
    Nay, by the mass, she looks pale as if she were angry.
    Sirrah, are you of Beccles? I pray, how doth 415Goodman Cob? My father bought a horse of him.-- I'll tell you, Margaret, 'a were good to be a gentleman's jade, for of all things the foul hilding could not abide a dung-cart.
    How different is this farmer from the rest,
    That erst as yet hath pleased my wandering sight!
    420His words are witty, quickened with a smile,
    His courtesy gentle, smelling of the court;
    Facile and debonair in all his deeds,
    Proportioned as was Paris when in gray
    He courted Oenone in the vale by Troy.
    425Great lords have come and pleaded for my love,
    Who but the Keeper's lass of Fressingfield?
    And yet methinks this farmer's jolly son
    Passeth the proudest that hath pleased mine eye.
    But, Peg, disclose not that thou art in love,
    430And show as yet no sign of love to him.
    Although thou well wouldst wish him for thy love,
    Keep that to thee till time doth serve thy turn
    To show the grief wherein thy heart doth burn.--
    Come, Joan and Thomas, shall we to the fair?--
    435You, Beccles man, will not forsake us now?
    Not whilst I may have such quaint girls as you.
    Well, if you chance to come by Fressingfield,
    Make but a step into the Keeper's lodge,
    And such poor fare as woodmen can afford,
    440Butter and cheese, cream, and fat venison
    You shall have store, and welcome therewithal.
    Gramercies, Peggy. Look for me ere long.
    Exeunt omnes.
    [Scene 4] [Video Sc.4]
    Enter [King Henry the Third of England], the Emperor [of Germany], the King of Castile, Eleanor 445his daughter, Jaques Vandermast, a German, [and other lords and attendants].
    King Henry
    Great men of Europe, monarchs of the West,
    Ringed with the walls of old Oceanus,
    Whose lofty surge is like the battlements
    That compassed high-built Babel in with towers,
    450Welcome, my lords, welcome brave western kings,
    To England's shore, whose promontory cliffs
    Shows Albion is another little world.
    Welcome, says English Henry to you all,--
    Chiefly unto the lovely Eleanor,
    455Who dared for Edward's sake cut through the seas
    And venture as Agenor's damsel through the deep
    To get the love of Henry's wanton son.
    King of Castile
    's rich monarch, brave Plantagenet,
    The Pyren Mounts, swelling above the clouds,
    460That ward the wealthy Castile in with walls,
    Could not detain the beauteous Eleanor;
    But hearing of the fame of Edward's youth,
    She dared to brook Neptunus's haughty pride,
    And bide the brunt of froward Aeolus.
    465Then may fair England welcome her the more.
    After that English Henry, by his lords,
    Had sent Prince Edward's lovely counterfeit,
    A present to the Castile Eleanor,
    The comely portrait of so brave a man,
    470The virtuous fame discoursed of his deeds,
    Edward's courageous resolution
    Done at the Holy Land 'fore Damas's walls,
    Led both mine eye and thought in equal links
    To like so of the English monarch's son
    475That I attempted perils for his sake.
    Emperor of Germany
    Where is the prince, my lord?
    King Henry
    He posted down, not long since, from the court
    To Suffolk side, to merry Framlingham,
    To sport himself amongst my fallow deer.
    480From thence, by packets sent to Hampton House,
    We hear the prince is ridden with his lords
    To Oxford, in the academy there
    To hear dispute amongst the learne}d men.
    But we will send forth letters for my son
    485To will him come from Oxford to the court.
    Emperor of Germany
    Nay, rather, Henry, let us as we be
    Ride for to visit Oxford with our train.
    Fain would I see your universities
    And what learne}d men your academy yields.
    490From Hapsburg have I brought a learne}d clerk
    To hold dispute with English orators.
    This doctor, surnamed Jaques Vandermast,
    A German born, passed into Padua,
    To Florence, and to fair Bologna,
    495To Paris, Rheims, and stately Orleans,
    And talking there with men of art, put down
    The chiefest of them all in aphorisms,
    In magic, and the mathematic rules.
    Now let us, Henry, try him in your schools.
    500King Henry
    He shall, my lord; this motion likes me well.
    We'll progress straight to Oxford with our trains,
    And see what men our academy brings.--
    And, wonder Vandermast, welcome to me.
    In Oxford shalt thou find a jolly friar
    505Called Friar Bacon, England's only flower;
    Set him but nonplus in his magic spells
    And make him yield in mathematic rules,
    And for thy glory I will bind thy brows,
    Not with a poet's garland made of bays,
    510But with a coronet of choicest gold.
    Whilst then we set to Oxford with our troops,
    Let's in and banquet in our English court.
    [Scene 5] [Video Sc.5]
    Enter Rafe Simnell in Edward's apparel, Edward [disguised as Rafe], Warren [and] Ermsby, disguised.
    [Posing as Prince Edward] Where be these vagabond knaves, that they attend no better on their master?
    [As Rafe] If it please your honor, we are all ready at an inch.
    Sirrah, Ned, I'll have no more post horse to ride on. I'll have another fetch.
    I pray you, how is that, my lord?
    Marry, sir, I'll send to the Isle of Ely for four or five dozen of geese, and I'll have them tied six and six together with whipcord. Now upon their backs will I have a fair field bed with a canopy; and so when it is my pleasure, I'll flee into what 525place I please. This will be easy.
    Your honor hath said well, but shall we to Brazennose College before we pull off our boots?
    Warren, well motioned; we will to the friar
    Before we revel it within the town.--
    530Rafe, see you keep your countenance like a prince.
    Wherefore have I such a company of cutting knaves to wait upon me but to keep and defend my countenance against all mine enemies? [To the others] Have you not good swords and bucklers?
    Enter Bacon and Miles.
    Stay, who comes here?
    Some scholar, and we'll ask him where Friar Bacon is.
    Friar Bacon
    [To Miles] Why, thou errant dunce, shall I never make thee good scholar? Doth not all the town cry out and say Friar Bacon's 540subsizar is the greatest blockhead in all Oxford? Why, thou canst not speak one word of true Latin.
    No, sir? Yes; what is this else? Ego sum tuus homo: "I am your man." I warrant you, sir, as good Tully's phrase as any is in Oxford.
    545Friar Bacon
    Come on, sirrah, what part of speech is ego?
    Ego, that is "I". Marry, nomen substantivo.
    Friar Bacon
    How prove you that?
    Why, sir, let him prove himself and 'a will. "I" can be heard, felt, and understood.
    550Friar Bacon
    Oh, gross dunce!
    Here beat him.
    Come, let us break off this dispute between these two.-- [To Miles] Sirrah, where is Brazennose College?
    Not far from Coppersmiths' Hall.
    What, dost thou mock me?
    Not I, sir. But what would you at Brazennose?
    Marry, we would speak with Friar Bacon.
    Whose men be you?
    [Pointing to Rafe] Marry, scholar, here's our master.
    Sirrah, I am the master of these good fellows. Mayst thou not know me to be a lord by my reparel?
    Then here's good game for the hawk, for here's the master fool and a covey of coxcombs. One wise man, I think, would spring you all.
    Gog's wounds! Warren, kill him.
    [Bacon charms them by magic, so that they are powerless to draw their swords.]
    Why, Ned, I think the devil be in my sheath. I cannot get out my dagger.
    Nor I mine. 'Swounds, Ned, I think I am bewitched.
    A company of scabs. The proudest of you all draw 570your weapon, if he can.-- [To the audience] See how boldly I speak now my master is by.
    I strive in vain, but if my sword be shut,
    And conjured fast by magic in my sheath,
    Villain, here is my fist.
    575Strike him a box on the ear.
    Oh, I beseech you, conjure his hands, too, that he may not lift his arms to his head, for he is light-fingered!
    Ned, strike him. I'll warrant thee by mine honor.
    Friar Bacon
    What means the English prince to wrong my man?
    To whom speakest thou?
    Friar Bacon
    To thee.
    Who art thou?
    Friar Bacon
    Could you not judge when all your swords grew fast
    That Friar Bacon was not far from hence?
    585Edward, King Henry's son and prince of Wales,
    Thy fool disguised cannot conceal thyself.
    I know both Ermsby and the Sussex earl,
    Else Friar Bacon had but little skill.
    Thou comest in post from merryFressingfield,
    590Fast fancied to the Keeper's bonny lass,
    To crave some succor of the jolly friar;
    And Lacy, earl of Lincoln, hast thou left
    To treat fair Margaret to allow thy loves;
    But friends are men, and love can baffle lords.
    595The earl both woos and courts her for himself.
    Ned, this is strange. The friar knoweth all.
    Apollo could not utter more than this.
    I stand amazed to hear this jolly friar
    Tell even the very secrets of my thoughts.
    600But learne}d Bacon, since thou knowest the cause
    Why I did post so fast from Fressingfield,
    Help, friar, at a pinch, that I may have
    The love of lovely Margaret to myself;
    And, as I am true prince of Wales, I'll give
    605Living and lands to strength thy college state.
    Good friar, help the prince in this.
    Why, servant Ned, will not the friar do it? Were not my sword glued to my scabbard by conjuration, I would cut off his head and make him do it by force.
    In faith, my lord, your manhood and your sword is all alike: they are so fast conjured that we shall never see them.
    What, doctor, in a dump? Tush, help the prince,
    And thou shalt see how liberal he will prove.
    Friar Bacon
    [Aside] Crave not such actions greater dumps than these?--
    615[To Edward] I will, my lord, strain out my magic spells,
    For this day comes the earl to Fressingfield,
    And 'fore that night shuts in the day with dark
    They'll be betrothed each to other fast.
    But come with me; we'll to my study straight,
    620And in a glass prospective I will show
    What's done this day in merryFressingfield.
    Gramercies, Bacon. I will quite thy pain.
    Friar Bacon
    But send your train, my lord, into the town;
    My scholar shall go bring them to their inn.
    625Meanwhile we'll see the knavery of the earl.
    Warren, leave me; and Ermsby, take the fool;
    Let him be master and go revel it
    Till I and Friar Bacon talk awhile.
    We will, my lord.
    Faith, Ned, and I'll lord it out 'til thou comest. I'll be prince of Wales over all the black pots in Oxford.
    Exeunt [all except Bacon and Edward].
    Bacon and Edward go into the study.
    Friar Bacon
    Now, frolic Edward, welcome to my cell.
    635Here tempers Friar Bacon many toys,
    And holds this place his consistory court
    Wherein the devils plead homage to his words.
    Within this glass prospective thou shalt see
    This day what's done in merry Fressingfield
    640'Twixt lovely Peggy and the Lincoln earl.
    Friar, thou gladst me. Now shall Edward try
    How Lacy meaneth to his sovereign lord.
    Friar Bacon
    Stand there, and look directly in the glass.
    Enter Margaret and Friar Bungay [visible through the glass, though Edward cannot hear them].
    645Friar Bacon
    What sees my lord?
    I see the Keeper's lovely lass appear,
    As brightsome as the paramour of Mars,
    Only attended by a jolly friar.
    Friar Bacon
    Sit still, and keep the crystal in your eye.
    But tell me, Friar Bungay, is it true
    That this fair courteous country swain,
    Who says his father is a farmer nigh,
    Can be Lord Lacy, earl of Lincolnshire?
    Friar Bungay
    Peggy, 'tis true, 'tis Lacy for my life,
    655Or else mine art and cunning both doth fail,
    Left by Prince Edward to procure his loves;
    For he in green that holp you run your cheese
    Is son to Henry, and the prince of Wales.
    Be what he will, his lure is but for lust.
    660But did Lord Lacy like poor Margaret,
    Or would he deign to wed a country lass,
    Friar, I would his humble handmaid be,
    And for great wealth quite him with courtesy.
    Friar Bungay
    Why, Margaret, dost thou love him?
    His personage, like the pride of vaunting Troy,
    Might well avouch to shadow Helen's scape;
    His wit is quick and ready in conceit,
    As Greece afforded in her chiefest prime.
    Courteous -- ah, friar! Full of pleasing smiles.
    670Trust me, I love too much to tell thee more.
    Suffice to me he is England's paramour.
    Friar Bungay
    Hath not each eye that viewed thy pleasing face
    Surnamèd thee fair maid of Fressingfield?
    Yes, Bungay, and would God the lovely earl
    675Had that in esse that so many sought.
    Friar Bungay
    Fear not. The friar will not be behind
    To show his cunning to entangle love.
    [To Bacon] I think the friar courts the bonny wench;
    Bacon, methinks he is a lusty churl!
    680Friar Bacon
    Now look, my lord.
    Enter Lacy [disguised as before].
    Gog's wounds, Bacon, here comes Lacy!
    Friar Bacon
    Sit still, my lord, and mark the comedy.
    Friar Bungay
    Here's Lacy. Margaret, step aside awhile.
    [They stand aside and watch Lacy.]
    Daphne, the damsel that caught Phoebus fast
    And locked him in the brightness of her looks,
    Was not so beauteous in Apollo's eyes
    As is fair Margaret to the Lincoln earl.
    Recant thee, Lacy! Thou art put in trust.
    690Edward, thy sovereign's son, hath chosen thee
    A secret friend to court her for himself,
    And darest thou wrong thy prince with treachery?
    Lacy, love makes no exception of a friend,
    Nor deems it of a prince but as a man.
    695Honor bids thee control him in his lust.
    His wooing is not for to wed the girl,
    But to entrap her and beguile the lass.
    Lacy, thou lovest. Then brook not such abuse,
    But wed her, and abide thy prince's frown;
    700For better die than see her live disgraced.
    Come, friar, I will shake him from his dumps.
    [She steps forward.]
    How cheer you, sir? A penny for your thought?
    You're early up. Pray God it be the near.
    What, come from Beccles in a morn so soon?
    Thus watchful are such men as live in love,
    Whose eyes brook broken slumbers for their sleep.
    I tell thee, Peggy, since last Harleston Fair
    My mind hath felt a heap of passions.
    A trusty man, that court it for your friend.
    710Woo you still for the courtier all in green?
    I marvel that he sues not for himself.
    Peggy, I pleaded first to get your grace for him,
    But when mine eyes surveyed your beauteous looks,
    Love, like a wag, straight dived into my heart,
    715And there did shrine the idea of yourself.
    Pity me, though I be a farmer's son,
    And measure not my riches but my love.
    You are very hasty, for to garden well
    Seeds must have time to sprout before they spring;
    720Love ought to creep as doth the dial's shade,
    For timely ripe is rotten too too soon.
    Friar Bungay[Stepping forward]
    Deus hic. Room for a merry friar.
    What, youth of Beccles, with the Keeper's lass?
    'Tis well. But tell me, hear you any news?
    No, friar. What news?
    Friar Bungay
    Hear you not how the pursuivants do post
    With proclamations through each country town?
    For what, gentle friar? Tell the news.
    Friar Bungay
    Dwell'st thou in Beccles and hear'st not of these news?
    730Lacy, the earl of Lincoln is late fled
    From Windsor court disguised like a swain,
    And lurks about the country here unknown.
    Henry suspects him of some treachery,
    And therefore doth proclaim in every way
    735That who can take the Lincoln earl shall have
    Paid in the Exchequer twenty thousand crowns.
    The earl of Lincoln? Friar, thou art mad.
    It was some other; thou mistakest the man.
    The earl of Lincoln? Why, it cannot be.
    Yes, very well, my lord, for you are he.
    The Keeper's daughter took you prisoner.
    Lord Lacy, yield. I'll be your jailer once.
    How familiar they be, Bacon!
    Friar Bacon
    Sit still and mark the sequel of their loves.
    Then am I double prisoner to thyself.
    Peggy, I yield. But are these news in jest?
    In jest with you, but earnest unto me,
    For why these wrongs do wring me at the heart.
    Ah, how these earls and noble men of birth
    750Flatter and feign to forge poor women's ill!
    Believe me, lass, I am the Lincoln earl.
    I not deny but tirèd thus in rags
    I lived disguised to win fair Peggy's love.
    What love is there where wedding ends not love?
    I meant, fair girl, to make thee Lacy's wife.
    I little think that earls will stoop so low.
    Say, shall I make thee countess ere I sleep?
    Handmaid unto the earl, so please himself;
    A wife in name but servant in obedience.
    The Lincoln countess, for it shall be so.
    I'll plight the bands and seal it with a kiss. [They kiss.]
    Gog's wounds, Bacon, they kiss! I'll stab them! [Edward threatens to stab the prospective glass.]
    Friar Bacon
    Oh, hold your hands, my lord, it is the glass!
    Choler, to see the traitors gree so well
    765Made me think the shadows substances.
    Friar Bacon
    'Twere a long poniard, my lord, to reach between
    Oxford and Fressingfield. But sit still and see more.
    Friar Bungay
    Well, lord of Lincoln, if your loves be knit,
    And that your tongues and thoughts do both agree,
    770To avoid ensuing jars, I'll hamper up the match.
    I'll take my portace forth and wed you here.
    Then, go to bed and seal up your desires.
    Friar, content. Peggy, how like you this?
    What likes my lord is pleasing unto me.
    775Friar Bungay
    Then handfast hand, and I will to my book.
    Friar Bacon
    [To Edward] What sees my lord now?
    Bacon, I see the lovers hand in hand,
    The friar ready with his portace there
    To wed them both; then am I quite undone.
    780Bacon, help now, if e'er thy magic served!
    Help, Bacon, stop the marriage now,
    If devils or necromancy may suffice
    And I will give thee forty thousand crowns!
    Friar Bacon
    Fear not, my lord, I'll stop the jolly friar
    785For mumbling up his orisons this day. [Bacon puts a spell on Bungay.]
    Why speak'st not, Bungay? Friar, to thy book.
    Bungay is mute, crying "Hud, hud!"
    How lookest thou, friar, as a man distraught?
    Reft of thy senses, Bungay? Show by signs,
    790If thou be dumb, what passions holdeth thee.
    He's dumb indeed. Bacon hath with his devils
    Enchanted him, or else some strange disease
    Or apoplexy hath possessed his lungs.
    But, Peggy, what he cannot with his book,
    795We'll 'twixt us both unite it up in heart.
    Else let me die, my lord, a miscreant.
    Why stands Friar Bungay so amazed?
    Friar Bacon
    I have struck him dumb, my lord, and if your honor please,
    I'll fetch this Bungay straightway from Fressingfield,
    800And he shall dine with us in Oxford here.
    Bacon, do that and thou contentest me.
    Of courtesy, Margaret, let us lead the friar
    Unto thy father's lodge, to comfort him
    With broths, to bring him from this hapless trance.
    Or else, my lord, we were passing unkind
    To leave the friar so in his distress.
    Enter a devil [who carries Bungay away on his back].
    Oh help, my lord, a devil! A devil, my lord!
    Look how he carries Bungay on his back!
    810Let's hence, for Bacon's spirits be abroad.
    Exeunt [Margaret and Lacy].
    Bacon, I laugh to see the jolly friar
    Mounted upon the devil, and how the earl
    Flees with his bonny lass for fear.
    815As soon as Bungay is at Brazennose
    And I have chatted with the merry friar,
    I will in post hie me to Fressingfield
    And quite these wrongs on Lacy ere it be long.
    Friar Bacon
    So be it, my lord. But let us to our dinner,
    820For ere we have taken our repast awhile,
    We shall have Bungay brought to Brazennose.
    [Scene 6] [Video Sc.6]
    Enter three doctors: Burden, Mason, [and] Clement.
    Now that we are gathered in the Regent House,
    It fits us talk about the king's repair,
    For he, trooped with all the western kings
    That lie alongst the Danzig seas by east,
    North by the clime of frosty Germany,
    830The Almain monarch, and the Saxon duke,
    Castile, and lovely Eleanor with him,
    Have in their jests resolved for Oxford town.
    We must lay plots of stately tragedies,
    Strange comic shows such as proud Roscius
    835Vaunted before the Roman emperors.
    To welcome all the western potentates.
    But more, the king by letters hath foretold
    That Frederick, the Almain Emperor,
    Hath brought with him a German of esteem
    840Whose surname is Don Jaques Vandermast,
    Skillful in magic and those secret arts.
    Then must we all make suit unto the friar,
    To Friar Bacon, that he vouch this task,
    And undertake to countervail in skill
    845The German, else there's none in Oxford can
    Match and dispute with learne}d Vandermast.
    Bacon, if he will hold the German play,
    Will teach him what an English friar can do.
    The devil, I think, dare not dispute with him.
    Indeed, Mas Doctor, he displeasured you,
    In that he brought your hostess with her spit
    From Henley posting unto Brazennose.
    A vengeance on the friar for his pains!
    But leaving that, let's hie to Bacon straight,
    855To see if he will take this task in hand.
    [A cry of voices.]
    Stay, what rumor is this? The town is up in a mutiny. What hurly-burly is this?
    Enter a Constable, with Rafe, Warren, [and] Ermsby [all three disguised as before]and Miles.
    Nay, masters, if you were ne'er so good, you shall before the doctors to answer your misdemeanor.
    What's the matter, fellow?
    Marry, sir, here's a company of rufflers that, drinking in the tavern, have made a great brawl and almost killed 865the vintner.
    Salve, Doctor Burden. This lubberly lurdan,
    Ill-shaped and ill-faced, disdained and disgraced,
    What he tells unto vobis, mentitur de nobis.
    Who is the master and chief of this crew?
    [Pointing to Rafe]Ecce asinum mundi, figura rotundi,
    Neat, sheat, and fine, as brisk as a cup of wine.
    [To Rafe] What are you?
    I am, father doctor, as a man would say, the bellwether of this company. These are my lords, and I the prince of Wales.
    Are you Edward, the king's son?
    Sirrah Miles, bring hither the tapster that drew the wine, and I warrant when they see how soundly I have broke his head, they'll say 'twas done by no less man than a prince.
    I cannot believe that this is the prince of Wales.
    And why so, sir?
    For they say the prince is a brave and a wise gentleman.
    Why, and thinkest thou, doctor, that he is not so?
    Dar'st thou detract and derogate from him,
    Being so lovely and so brave a youth?
    Whose face shining with many a sugared smile
    Bewrays that he is bred of princely race?
    And yet, master doctor, to speak like a proctor,
    And tell unto you, what is veriment and true,
    To cease of this quarrel, look but on his apparel,
    890Then mark but my tales, he is great prince of Wales,
    The chief of our gregis, and filius regis.
    Then 'ware what is done, for he is Henry's white son.
    Doctors, whose doting nightcaps are not capable of my ingenious dignity, know that I am Edward Plantagenet, 895whom if you displease will make a ship that shall hold all your colleges, and so carry away the Niniversity with a fair wind to the Bankside in Southwark.-- How say'st thou, Ned Warren, shall I not do it?
    Yes, my good lord, and if it please your lordship, 900I will gather up all your old pantofles, and with the cork make you a pinnace of five hundred ton that shall serve the turn marvelous well, my lord.
    And I, my lord, will have pioneers to undermine the town, that the very gardens and orchards be carried away for 905your summer walks.
    And I with scientia, and great diligentia,
    Will conjure and charm, to keep you from harm,
    That utrum horum mavis, your very great navis,
    Like Bartlet's ship, from Oxford do skip,
    910With colleges and schools, full loaden with fools.
    Quid dicis ad hoc, worshipful Domine Dawcock?
    Why, harebrained courtiers, are you drunk or mad
    To taunt us up with such scurrility?
    Deem you us men of base and light esteem
    915To bring us such a fop for Henry's son?--
    Call out the beadles and convey them hence,
    Straight to Bocardo. Let the roisters lie
    Close clapped in bolts until their wits be tame.
    Why, shall we to prison, my lord?
    What say'st, Miles? Shall I honor the prison with my presence?
    No, no! Out with your blades, and hamper these jades;
    Have a flirt and a crash, now play revel-dash,
    And teach these sacerdos, that the Bocardos,
    Like peasants and elves, are meet for themselves.
    To the prison with them, constable.
    Well, doctors, seeing I have sported me
    With laughing at these mad and merry wags,
    Know that Prince Edward is at Brazennose,
    [Pointing to Rafe]And this, attired like the prince of Wales,
    930Is Rafe, King Henry's only love}d fool;
    I, earl of Sussex, and this, Ermsby,
    One of the privy chamber to the king,
    Who, while the prince with Friar Bacon stays,
    Have reveled it in Oxford as you see.
    My lord, pardon us, we knew not what you were.
    But courtiers may make greater scapes than these.
    Will't please your honor dine with me today?
    I will, master doctor, and satisfy the vintner for his hurt. Only I must desire you to imagine him [pointing to Rafe] all this forenoon the 940prince of Wales.
    I will, sir.
    And upon that I will lead the way; only I will have Miles go before me because I have heard Henry say that wisdom must go before majesty.
    Exeunt omnes.
    945[Scene 7] [Video Sc.7]
    Enter Prince Edward with his poniard in his hand, Lacy, and Margaret.
    Lacy, thou canst not shroud thy traitorous thoughts,
    Nor cover, as did Cassius, all thy wiles,
    For Edward hath an eye that looks as far
    950As Lynceus from the shores of Grecia.
    Did not I sit in Oxford by the friar
    And see thee court the maid of Fressingfield,
    Sealing thy flattering fancies with a kiss?
    Did not proud Bungay draw his portace forth,
    955And, joining hand in hand, had married you,
    If Friar Bacon had not struck him dumb
    And mounted him upon a spirit's back
    That we might chat at Oxford with the friar?
    Traitor, what answer'st? Is not all this true?
    Truth all, my lord, and thus I make reply:
    At Harleston Fair, there courting for your grace,
    Whenas mine eye surveyed her curious shape,
    And drew the beauteous glory of her looks
    To dive into the center of my heart,
    965Love taught me that your honor did but jest,
    That princes were in fancy but as men,
    How that the lovely maid of Fressingfield
    Was fitter to be Lacy's wedded wife
    Than concubine unto the prince of Wales.
    Injurious Lacy, did I love thee more
    Than Alexander his Hephestion?
    Did I unfold the passions of my love
    And lock them in the closet of thy thoughts?
    Wert thou to Edward second to himself,
    975Sole friend, and partner of his secret loves?
    And could a glance of fading beauty break
    The enchained fetters of such private friends?
    Base coward, false, and too effeminate
    To be corrival with a prince in thoughts!
    980From Oxford have I posted since I dined
    To quite a traitor 'fore that Edward sleep.
    'Twas I, my lord, not Lacy, stepped awry;
    For oft he sued and courted for yourself,
    And still wooed for the courtier all in green,
    985But I, whom fancy made but overfond,
    Pleaded myself with looks as if I loved.
    I fed mine eye with gazing on his face,
    And, still bewitched, loved Lacy with my looks.
    My heart with sighs, mine eyes pleaded with tears,
    990My face held pity and content at once,
    And more I could not cipher out by signs
    But that I loved Lord Lacy with my heart.
    Then, worthy Edward, measure with thy mind
    If women's favors will not force men fall,
    995If beauty and if darts of piercing love
    Are not of force to bury thoughts of friends.
    I tell thee, Peggy, I will have thy loves.
    Edward or none shall conquer Margaret.
    In frigates bottomed with rich sethin planks,
    1000Topped with the lofty firs of Lebanon,
    Stemmed and incased with burnished ivory,
    And overlaid with plates of Persian wealth,
    Like Thetis shalt thou wanton on the waves
    And draw the dolphins to thy lovely eyes
    1005To dance lavoltas in the purple streams.
    Sirens with harps and silver psalteries
    Shall wait with music at thy frigate's stem
    And entertain fair Margaret with their lays.
    England and England's wealth shall wait on thee;
    1010Britain shall bend unto her prince's love,
    And do due homage to thine excellence
    If thou wilt be but Edward's Margaret.
    Pardon, my lord. If Jove's great royalty
    Sent me such presents as to Danaë,
    1015If Phoebus, tir├ęd in Latona's webs,
    Came courting from the beauty of his lodge,
    The dulcet tunes of frolic Mercury
    Nor all the wealth heaven's treasury affords
    Should make me leave Lord Lacy or his love.
    I have learned at Oxford, then, this point of schools:
    Ablata causa, tollitur effectus:
    Lacy, the cause that Margaret cannot love
    Nor fix her liking on the English prince,
    Take him away, and then the effects will fail.
    1025Villain, prepare thyself, for I will bathe
    My poniard in the bosom of an earl.
    [Kneeling] Rather than live and miss fair Margaret's love,
    Prince Edward, stop not at the fatal doom,
    But stab it home. End both my loves and life.
    [Kneeling] Brave prince of Wales, honored for royal deeds,
    'Twere sin to stain fair Venus's courts with blood.
    Love's conquest ends, my lord, in courtesy.
    Spare Lacy, gentle Edward; let me die.
    For so both you and he do cease your loves.
    Lacy shall die as traitor to his lord.
    I have deserved it, Edward; act it well.
    What hopes the prince to gain by Lacy's death?
    To end the loves 'twixt him and Margaret.
    Why, thinks King Henry's son that Margaret's love
    1040Hangs in the uncertain balance of proud time?
    That death shall make a discord of our thoughts?
    No! Stab the earl and 'fore the morning sun
    Shall vaunt him thrice over the lofty east,
    Margaret will meet her Lacy in the heavens.
    If aught betides to lovely Margaret
    That wrongs or wrings her honor from content,
    Europe's rich wealth nor England's monarchy,
    Should not allure Lacy to overlive.
    Then, Edward, short my life and end her loves.
    Rid me, and keep a friend worth many loves.
    Nay, Edward, keep a love worth many friends.
    And if thy mind be such as fame hath blazed,
    Then, princely Edward, let us both abide
    The fatal resolution of thy rage.
    1055Banish thou fancy and embrace revenge,
    And in one tomb knit both our carcasses,
    Whose hearts were linke}d in one perfect love.
    Edward, art thou that famous prince of Wales
    Who at Damascus beat the Saracens
    1060And brought'st home triumph on thy lance's point,
    And shall thy plumes be pulled by Venus down?
    Is it princely to dissever lovers' leagues,
    To part such friends as glory in their loves?
    Leave, Ned, and make a virtue of this fault,
    1065And further Peg and Lacy in their loves.
    So in subduing fancy's passion,
    Conquering thyself, thou get'st the richest spoil.--
    Lacy, rise up.-- Fair Peggy, here's my hand.
    The prince of Wales hath conquered all his thoughts,
    1070And all his loves he yields unto the earl.
    Lacy, enjoy the maid of Fressingfield;
    Make her thy Lincoln countess at the church,
    And Ned, as he is true Plantagenet,
    Will give her to thee frankly for thy wife.
    Humbly I take her of my sovereign,
    As if that Edward gave me England's right,
    And riched me with the Albion diadem.
    And doth the English prince mean true?
    Will he vouchsafe to cease his former loves,
    1080And yield the title of a country maid
    Unto Lord Lacy?
    I will, fair Peggy, as I am true lord.
    Then, lordly sir, whose conquest is as great
    In conquering love as Caesar's victories,
    1085Margaret, as mild and humble in her thoughts
    As was Aspatia unto Cyrus's self,
    Yields thanks, and next Lord Lacy, doth enshrine
    Edward the second secret in her heart.
    Gramercy, Peggy. Now that vows are past,
    1090And that your loves are not to be revolt,
    Once, Lacy, friends again, come, we will post
    To Oxford, for this day the king is there,
    And brings for Edward Castile Eleanor.
    Peggy, I must go see and view my wife;
    1095I pray God I like her as I loved thee.
    Beside, Lord Lincoln, we shall hear dispute
    'Twixt Friar Bacon and learne}d Vandermast.
    Peggy, we'll leave you for a week or two.
    As it please Lord Lacy; but love's foolish looks
    1100Think footsteps miles and minutes to be hours.
    I'll hasten, Peggy, to make short return.--
    But please, your honor, go unto the lodge.
    We shall have butter, cheese, and venison,
    And yesterday I brought for Margaret
    1105A lusty bottle of neat claret wine.
    Thus can we feast and entertain your grace.
    'Tis cheer, Lord Lacy, for an emperor
    If he respect the person and the place.
    Come, let us in, for I will all this night
    1110Ride post until I come to Bacon's cell.
    [Scene 8] [Video Sc.8]
    Enter [King] Henry, [the] Emperor [of Germany], [the King of] Castile, [the Duke of Saxony], Eleanor, Vandermast, Bungay, [and other lords and attendants].
    Emperor of Germany
    Trust me, Plantagenet, these Oxford schools
    1115Are richly seated near the river side,
    The mountains full of fat and fallow deer,
    The battling pastures laid with kine and flocks,
    The town gorgeous with high-built colleges,
    And scholars seemly in their grave attire,
    1120Learn├ęd in searching principles of art.--
    What is thy judgment, Jaques Vandermast?
    That lordly are the buildings of the town,
    Spacious the rooms and full of pleasant walks;
    But for the doctors, how that they be learned,
    1125It may be meanly for aught I can hear.
    Friar Bungay
    I tell thee, German, Hapsburg holds none such,
    None read so deep as Oxenford contains.
    There are within our academic state
    Men that may lecture it in Germany
    1130To all the doctors of your Belgic schools.
    King Henry
    Stand to him, Bungay. Charm this Vandermast
    And I will use thee as a royal king.
    [King Henry and the nobles sit.]
    Wherein darest thou dispute with me?
    Friar Bungay
    In what a doctor and a friar can.
    Before rich Europe's worthies put thou forth
    The doubtful question unto Vandermast.
    Friar Bungay
    Let it be this: whether the spirits of pyromancy or geomancy be most predominant in magic.
    I say of pyromancy.
    1140Friar Bungay
    And I of geomancy.
    The cabbalists that write of magic spells,
    As Hermes, Melchie, and Pythagorus,
    Affirm that 'mongst the quadruplicity
    Of elemental essence, Terra is but thought
    1145To be a punctum square}d to the rest;
    And that the compass of ascending elements
    Exceed in bigness as they do in height,
    Judging the concave circle of the sun
    To hold the rest in his circumference.
    1150If then, as Hermes says, the fire be greatest,
    Purest, and only giveth shapes to spirits,
    Then must these demons that haunt that place
    Be every way superior to the rest.
    Friar Bungay
    I reason not of elemental shapes,
    1155Nor tell I of the concave latitudes,
    Noting their essence nor their quality,
    But of the spirits that pyromancy calls,
    And of the vigor of the geomantic fiends.
    I tell thee, German, magic haunts the grounds,
    1160And those strange necromantic spells
    That work such shows and wondering in the world
    Are acted by those geomantic spirits
    That Hermes calleth terrae filii.
    The fiery spirits are but transparent shades
    1165That lightly pass as heralds to bear news;
    But earthly fiends, closed in the lowest deep,
    Dissever mountains if they be but charged,
    Being more gross and massy in their power.
    Rather these earthly geomantic spirits
    1170Are dull and like the place where they remain;
    For when proud Lucifer fell from the heavens,
    The spirits and angels that did sin with him
    Retained their local essence as their faults,
    All subject under Luna's continent.
    1175They which offended less hung in the fire,
    And second faults did rest within the air;
    But Lucifer and his proud-hearted fiends
    Were thrown into the center of the earth,
    Having less understanding than the rest,
    1180As having greater sin and lesser grace.
    Therefore, such gross and earthly spirits do serve
    For jugglers, witches, and vile sorcerers,
    Whereas the pyromantic genii
    Are mighty, swift, and of far-reaching power.
    1185But grant that geomancy hath most force;
    Bungay, to please these mighty potentates,
    Prove by some instance what thy art can do.
    Friar Bungay
    I will.
    Emperor of Germany
    Now, English Harry, here begins the game;
    1190We shall see sport between these learne}d men.
    What wilt thou do?
    Friar Bungay
    Show thee the tree leaved with refine}d gold,
    Whereon the fearful dragon held his seat
    That watched the garden called Hesperides,
    1195Subdued and won by conquering Hercules.
    Well done.
    Here Bungay conjures and the tree appears with the dragon shooting fire.
    King Henry
    What say you, royal lordings, to my friar?
    1200Hath he not done a point of cunning skill?
    Each scholar in the necromantic spells
    Can do as much as Bungay hath performed.
    But as Alcmena's bastard razed this tree,
    So will I raise him up as when he lived,
    1205And cause him pull the dragon from his seat,
    And tear the branches piecemeal from the root.--
    Hercules, prodi, prodi, Hercules!
    Hercules appears in his lion's skin.
    Quis me vult?
    Jove's bastard son, thou Lybian Hercules,
    Pull off the sprigs from off the Hesperian tree,
    As once thou did'st to win the golden fruit.
    Here he begins to break the branches.
    Now, Bungay, if thou canst by magic charm
    The fiend appearing like great Hercules
    From pulling down the branches of the tree,
    Then art thou worthy to be counted learned.
    Friar Bungay
    I cannot.
    Cease, Hercules, until I give thee charge. [Hercules ceases.]
    [To King Henry] Mighty commander of this English isle,
    Henry, come from the stout Plantagenets,
    Bungay is learned enough to be a friar,
    But to compare with Jaques Vandermast
    1225Oxford and Cambridge must go seek their cells
    To find a man to match him in his art.
    I have given non-plus to the Paduans,
    To them of Siena, Florence, and Bologna,
    Rheims, Louvain, and fair Rotterdam,
    1230Frankfurt, Utrecht, and Orleans;
    And now must Henry, if he do me right,
    Crown me with laurel as they all have done.
    Enter Bacon.
    Friar Bacon
    All hail to this royal company
    1235That sit to hear and see this strange dispute!--
    Bungay, how stand'st thou as a man amazed?
    What, hath the German acted more than thou?
    What art thou that questions thus?
    Friar Bacon
    Men call me Bacon.
    Lordly thou lookest, as if that thou wert learned;
    Thy countenance, as if science held her seat
    Between the circled arches of thy brows.
    King Henry
    Now, monarchs, hath the German found his match.
    Emperor of Germany
    Bestir thee, Jaques, take not now the foil,
    1245Lest thou dost lose what foretime thou didst gain.
    Bacon, wilt thou dispute?
    Friar Bacon
    No, unless he were more learned than Vandermast;
    For yet tell me, what hast thou done?
    Raised Hercules to ruinate that tree
    1250That Bungay mounted by his magic spells.
    Friar Bacon
    Set Hercules to work.
    Now, Hercules, I charge thee to thy task.
    Pull off the golden branches from the root.
    I dare not. See'st thou not great Bacon here,
    1255Whose frown doth act more than thy magic can?
    By all the thrones and dominations,
    Virtues, powers, and mighty hierarchies,
    I charge thee to obey to Vandermast.
    Bacon, that bridles headstrong Belcephon
    1260And rules Astaroth, guider of the north,
    Binds me from yielding unto Vandermast.
    King Henry
    How now, Vandermast, have you met with your match?
    Never before wast known to Vandermast
    That men held devils in such obedient awe.
    1265Bacon doth more than art, or else I fail.
    Emperor of Germany
    Why, Vandermast, art thou overcome?
    Bacon, dispute with him and try his skill.
    Friar Bacon
    I come not, monarchs, for to hold dispute
    With such a novice as is Vandermast.
    1270I come to have your royalties to dine
    With Friar Bacon here in Brazennose;
    And for this German troubles but the place,
    And holds this audience with a long suspense,
    I'll send him to his academy hence.--
    1275Thou, Hercules, whom Vandermast did raise,
    Transport the German unto Hapsburg straight,
    That he may learn by travail, 'gainst the spring,
    More secret dooms and aphorisms of art.
    Vanish the tree and thou away with him!
    1280Exit the spirit with Vandermast and the tree.
    Emperor of Germany
    Why, Bacon, whither dost thou send him?
    Friar Bacon
    To Hapsburg. There your highness at return
    Shall find the German in his study safe.
    King Henry
    Bacon, thou hast honored England with thy skill,
    1285And made fair Oxford famous by thine art;
    I will be English Henry to thyself.
    But tell me, shall we dine with thee today?
    Friar Bacon
    With me, my lord; and while I fit my cheer,
    See where Prince Edward comes to welcome you,
    1290Gracious as the morning star of heaven.
    Enter Edward, Lacy, Warren, [and] Ermsby.
    Emperor of Germany
    Is this Prince Edward, Henry's royal son?
    How martial is the figure of his face!
    Yet lovely and beset with amorets.
    1295King Henry
    Ned, where hast thou been?
    At Framlingham, my lord, to try your bucks
    If they could scape the teisers or the toil.
    But hearing of these lordly potentates
    Landed and progressed up to Oxford town,
    1300I posted to give entertain to them--
    Chief to the Almain monarch; next to him,
    And joint with him, Castile and Saxony
    Are welcome as they may be to the English court.
    Thus for the men.-- But see, Venus appears,
    1305Or one that over-matcheth Venus in her shape.
    Sweet Eleanor, beauty's high swelling pride,
    Rich nature's glory and her wealth at once,
    Fair of all fairs, welcome to Albion;
    Welcome to me, and welcome to thine own,
    1310If that thou deign'st the welcome from myself.
    Martial Plantagenet, Henry's high-minded son,
    The mark that Eleanor did count her aim,
    I liked thee 'fore I saw thee, now I love,
    And so as in so short a time I may,
    1315Yet so as time shall never break that ‘so,'
    And therefore so accept of Eleanor.
    King of Castile
    [To King Henry] Fear not, my lord, this couple will agree,
    If love may creep into their wanton eyes;--
    And therefore, Edward, I accept thee here,
    1320Without suspense, as my adopted son.
    King Henry
    Let me that joy in these consorting greets,
    And glory in these honors done to Ned,
    Yield thanks for all these favors to my son,
    And rest a true Plantagenet to all.
    1325Enter Miles with a cloth and trenchers and salt.
    Salvete omnes reges, that govern your greges! In Saxony and Spain, in England and in Almain; for all this frolic
    rabble must I cover the table, with trenchers, salt, and cloth, and
    then look for your broth.
    1330Emperor of Germany
    What pleasant fellow is this?
    King Henry
    'Tis, my lord, Doctor Bacon's poor scholar.
    [Aside] My master hath made me sewer of these great lords, and God knows I am as serviceable at a table as a sow is under an apple tree. 'Tis no matter; their cheer shall not be great, and 1335therefore what skills where the salt stand, before or behind?[Exit Miles.]
    King of Castile
    These scholars know more skill in axioms,
    How to use quips and sleights of sophistry,
    Than for to cover courtly for a king.
    Enter Miles with a mess of pottage and broth, 1340and after him Bacon.
    [Nearly dropping the dishes]Spill, sir? Why, do you think I never carried two-penny chop before in my life? By your leave, nobile decus, for
    here comes Doctor Bacon's pecus, being in his full age, to carry a
    mess of pottage.
    1345Friar Bacon
    Lordings, admire not if your cheer be this,
    For we must keep our academic fare.
    No riot where philosophy doth reign,
    And therefore, Henry, place these potentates,
    And bid them fall unto their frugal cates.
    1350Emperor of Germany
    Presumptuous friar! What, scoff'st thou at a king?
    Why dost thou taunt us with thy peasants' fare,
    And give us cates fit for country swains?--
    Henry, proceeds this jest of thy consent?
    To twit us with a pittance of such price?
    1355Tell me, and Frederick will not grieve thee long.
    King Henry
    By Henry's honor and the royal faith
    The English monarch beareth to his friend,
    I knew not of the friar's feeble fare,
    Nor am I pleased he entertains you thus.
    1360Friar Bacon
    Content thee, Frederick, for I showed these cates
    To let thee see how scholars use to feed,
    How little meat refines our English wits.--
    Miles, take away, and let it be thy dinner.
    Marry, sir, I will. This day shall be a festival day with me, 1365For I shall exceed in the highest degree.
    Exit Miles.
    Friar Bacon
    I tell thee, monarch, all the German peers
    Could not afford thy entertainment such,
    So royal and so full of majesty,
    As Bacon will present to Frederick.
    1370The basest waiter that attends thy cups
    Shall be in honors greater than thyself.
    And for thy cates rich Alexandria drugs,
    Fetched by carvels from Egypt's richest straits,
    Found in the wealthy strand of Africa,
    1375Shall royalize the table of my king.
    Wines richer than the Gyptian courtesan
    Quaffed to Augustus's kingly countermatch
    Shall be caroused in English Henry's feasts.
    Candy shall yield the richest of her canes;
    1380Persia, down her Volga by canoes
    Send down the secrets of her spicery;
    The Afric dates, myrobalans of Spain,
    Conserves and suckets from Tiberias,
    Cates from Judea, choicer than the lamp
    1385That fired Rome with sparks of gluttony,
    Shall beautify the board for Frederick;
    And therefore grudge not at a friar's feast.[Exeunt.]
    [Scene 9] [Video Sc.9]
    Enter two gentlemen, Lambert and Serlsby, with the Keeper.
    Come, frolic keeper of our liege's game,
    Whose table spread hath ever venison
    And jacks of wines to welcome passengers;
    Know I am in love with jolly Margaret,
    That over-shines our damsels as the moon
    1395Darkeneth the brightest sparkles of the night.
    In Laxfield here my land and living lies;
    I'll make thy daughter jointer of it all,
    So thou consent to give her to my wife,
    And I can spend five hundred marks a year.
    I am the landlord, keeper of thy holds;
    By copy all thy living lies in me;
    Laxfield did never see me raise my due.
    I will enfeoff fair Margaret in all,
    So she will take her to a lusty squire.
    Now, courteous gentles, if the Keeper's girl
    Hath pleased the liking fancy of you both,
    And with her beauty hath subdued your thoughts,
    'Tis doubtful to decide the question.
    It joys me that such men of great esteem
    1410Should lay their liking on this base estate,
    And that her state should grow so fortunate
    To be a wife to meaner men than you,
    But sith such squires will stoop to keeper's fee,
    I will, to avoid displeasure of you both,
    1415Call Margaret forth, and she shall make her choice.
    Exit [the Keeper].
    Content, Keeper, send her unto us.
    Why, Serlsby, is thy wife so lately dead?
    Are all thy loves so lightly passe}d over
    As thou canst wed before the year be out?
    I live not, Lambert, to content the dead,
    Nor was I wedded but for life to her.
    The grave ends and begins a married state.
    Enter Margaret.
    Peggy, the lovely flower of all towns,
    1425Suffolk's fair Helen and rich England's star,
    Whose beauty tempered with her huswifery
    Makes England talk of merry Fressingfield!
    I cannot trick it up with poesies,
    Nor paint my passions with comparisons,
    1430Nor tell a tale of Phoebus and his loves,
    But this believe me: Laxfield here is mine,
    Of ancient rent seven hundred pounds a year,
    And if thou canst but love a country squire,
    I will enfeoff thee, Margaret, in all.
    1435I cannot flatter. Try me, if thou please.
    Brave neighboring squires, the stay of Suffolk's clime,
    A keeper's daughter is too base in gree
    To match with men accounted of such worth.
    But, might I not displease, I would reply.
    Say, Peggy, naught shall make us discontent.
    Then, gentles, note that love hath little stay,
    Nor can the flames that Venus sets on fire
    Be kindled but by fancy's motion.
    Then pardon, gentles, if a maid's reply
    1445Be doubtful while I have debated with myself
    Who or of whom love shall constrain me like.
    Let it be me; and trust me, Margaret,
    The meads environed with the silver streams,
    Whose battling pastures fatt'neth all my flocks,
    1450Yielding forth fleeces stapled with such wool
    As Lempster cannot yield more finer stuff,
    And forty kine with fair and burnished heads,
    With strutting dugs that paggle to the ground,
    Shall serve thy dairy if thou wed with me.
    Let pass the country wealth as flocks and kine,
    And lands that wave with Ceres's golden sheaves,
    Filling my barns with plenty of the fields;
    But, Peggy, if thou wed thyself to me
    Thou shalt have garments of embroidered silk,
    1460Lawns and rich networks for thy head-attire.
    Costly shall be thy fair habiliments,
    If thou wilt be but Lambert's loving wife.
    Content you, gentles, you have proffered fair,
    And more than fits a country maid's degree.
    1465But give me leave to counsel me a time,
    For fancy blooms not at the first assault.
    Give me but ten days' respite and I will reply
    Which or to whom myself affectionates.
    Lambert, I tell thee thou art importunate.
    1470Such beauty fits not such a base esquire.
    It is for Serlsby to have Margaret.
    Think'st thou with wealth to overreach me?
    Serlsby, I scorn to brook thy country braves.
    I dare thee, coward, to maintain this wrong
    1475At dint of rapier single in the field.
    I'll answer, Lambert, what I have avouched.--
    Margaret, farewell. Another time shall serve.
    Exit Serlsby.
    I'll follow.-- Peggy, farewell to thyself;
    Listen how well I'll answer for thy love.
    Exit Lambert.
    How Fortune tempers lucky haps with frowns
    And wrongs me with the sweets of my delight!
    Love is my bliss, and love is now my bale.
    Shall I be Helen in my froward fates,
    As I am Helen in my matchless hue,
    1485And set rich Suffolk with my face afire?
    If lovely Lacy were but with his Peggy,
    The cloudy darkness of his bitter frown
    Would check the pride of these aspiring squires.
    Before the term of ten days be expired,
    1490Whenas they look for answer of their loves,
    My lord will come to merry Fressingfield
    And end their fancies and their follies both;
    Till when, Peggy, be blithe and of good cheer.
    Enter a Post with a letter and
    1495a bag of gold.
    Fair lovely damsel, which way leads this path?
    How might I post me unto Fressingfield?
    Which footpath leadeth to the Keeper's lodge?
    Your way is ready and this path is right.
    1500Myself do dwell hereby in Fressingfield,
    And if the Keeper be the man you seek,
    I am his daughter. May I know the cause?
    Lovely and once beloved of my lord--
    No marvel if his eye was lodged so low
    1505When brighter beauty is not in the heavens.--
    The Lincoln earl hath sent you letters here,
    And with them just an hundred pounds in gold.
    Sweet bonny wench, read them and make reply.
    The scrolls that Jove sent Danae,
    1510Wrapped in rich closures of fine burnished gold,
    Were not more welcome than these lines to me.
    Tell me whilst that I do unrip the seals,
    Lives Lacy well? How fares my lovely lord?
    Well, if that wealth may make men to live well.
    The letter, and Margaret reads it.
    ‘The blooms of the almond tree grow in a night and vanish
    in a morn. The flies hemerae (fair Peggy) take life with
    the sun and die with the dew. Fancy, that slippeth in with a
    gaze, goeth out with a wink, and too timely loves have ever the
    1520shortest length. I write this as thy grief and my folly, who at Fressingfield loved that which time hath taught me to be but mean
    dainties. Eyes are dissemblers and fancy is but queasy. Therefore
    know, Margaret, I have chosen a Spanish lady to be my wife,
    chief waiting woman to the Princess Eleanor, a lady fair
    1525and no less fair than thyself, honorable and wealthy. In that I
    forsake thee, I leave thee to thine own liking, and for thy dowry
    I have sent thee a hundred pounds and ever assure thee of my
    favor, which shall avail thee and thine much. Farewell.
    Not thine nor his own,
    1530Edward Lacy.'
    Fond Ate, doomer of bad-boding fates,
    That wraps proud Fortune in thy snaky locks,
    Did'st thou enchant my birthday with such stars
    As lightened mischief from their infancy?
    1535If heavens had vowed, if stars had made decree,
    To show on me their froward influence,
    If Lacy had but loved, heavens, hell, and all
    Could not have wronged the patience of my mind.
    It grieves me, damsel, but the earl is forced
    1540To love the lady by the king's command.
    The wealth combined within the English shelves,
    Europe's commander, nor the English king,
    Should not have moved the love of Peggy from her lord.
    What answer shall I return to my lord?
    First, for thou cam'st from Lacy whom I loved--
    Ah, give me leave to sigh at every thought!--
    Take thou, my friend, the hundred pound he sent,
    For Margaret's resolution craves no dower.
    The world shall be to her as vanity,
    1550Wealth, trash; love, hate; pleasure, despair;
    For I will straight to stately Framlingham,
    And in the abbey there be shorn a nun,
    And yield my loves and liberty to God.
    Fellow, I give thee this, not for the news,
    1555For those be hateful unto Margaret,
    But for th'art Lacy's man, once Margaret's love.
    What I have heard, what passions I have seen,
    I'll make report of them unto the earl.
    Exit Post.
    Say that she joys his fancies be at rest,
    1560And prays that his misfortune may be hers!
    [Scene 10] [Video Sc.10]
    Enter Friar Bacon, drawing the curtains with a white stick, a book in his hand and a lamp lighted by him, and the brazen head, and Miles with weapons by him.
    Friar Bacon
    Miles, where are you?
    Here, sir.
    Friar Bacon
    How chance you tarry so long?
    Think you that the watching of the brazen head craves no furniture? I warrant you, sir, I have so armed myself that if all your devils come I will not fear them an inch.
    1570Friar Bacon
    Miles, thou knowest that I have dived into hell
    And sought the darkest palaces of fiends,
    That with my magic spells great Belcephon
    Hath left his lodge and kneele}d at my cell.
    The rafters of the earth rent from the poles
    1575And three-formed Luna hid her silver looks,
    Trembling upon her concave continent,
    When Bacon read upon his magic book.
    With seven years' tossing necromantic charms,
    Poring upon dark Hecate's principles,
    1580I have framed out a monstrous head of brass
    That by the enchanting forces of the devil
    Shall tell out strange and uncouth aphorisms,
    And girt fair England with a wall of brass.
    Bungay and I have watched these threescore days,
    1585And now our vital spirits crave some rest.
    If Argus lived and had his hundred eyes,
    They could not overwatch Phobeter's night.
    Now, Miles, in thee rests Friar Bacon's weal;
    The honor and renown of all his life
    1590Hangs in the watching of this brazen head.
    Therefore, I charge thee by the immortal God
    That holds the souls of men within his fist,
    This night thou watch; for ere the morning star
    Sends out his glorious glister on the north,
    1595The head will speak. Then, Miles, upon thy life,
    Wake me; for then by magic art I'll work
    To end my seven years' task with excellence.
    If that a wink but shut thy watchful eye,
    Then farewell Bacon's glory and his fame.
    1600Draw close the curtains. Miles, now for thy life,
    Be watchful and--
    Here he falleth asleep.
    So, I thought you would talk yourself asleep anon; and 'tis no marvel, for Bungay on the days and he on the nights have watched just these ten and fifty days. Now this is 1605the night, and 'tis my task and no more. Now, Jesus, bless me! What a goodly head it is, and a nose! You talk of nos autem glorificare, but here's a nose that I warrant may be called nos autem popelare for the people of the parish. Well, I am furnished with weapons. Now, sir, I will set me down by a post, and make it as 1610good as a watchman to wake me if I chance to slumber. I thought, Goodman Head, I would call you out of your memento-- [He falls asleep and knocks his head.] Passion o' God, I have almost broke my pate! Up, Miles, to your task. Take your brown bill in your hand. Here's some of your master's hobgoblins abroad.
    With this a great noise. 1615The head speaks.
    Brazen Head Time is.
    ‘Time is'? Why, Master Brazen Head, have you such a capital nose, and answer you with syllables? ‘Time is'? Is this all my master's cunning, to spend seven years study about ‘Time is'? 1620Well, sir, it may be we shall have some better orations of it anon. Well, I'll watch you as narrowly as ever you were watched, and I'll play with you as the nightingale with the slow-worm. I'll set a prick against my breast. [He leans against the spear-point of a halberd.] Now, rest there, Miles. [He sleeps again and falls down.] Lord have mercy upon me, I have almost killed myself! [Noise again.] Up Miles! List how they 1625rumble!
    Brazen Head
    Time was.
    Well, Friar Bacon, you spent your seven years' study well that can make your head speak but two words at once. ‘Time was.' Yea, marry, time was when my master was a wise man, 1630but that was before he began to make the brazen head. You shall lie while your arse ache and your head speak no better. Well, I will watch, and walk up and down, and be a peripatetian and a philosopher of Aristotle's stamp. [Noise again.] What, a fresh noise? Take thy pistols in hand, Miles!
    1635Here the head speaks and a lightning flasheth forth, and a hand appears that breaketh down the head with a hammer.
    Brazen Head
    Time is past.
    Master, master, up! Hell's broken loose! Your head 1640speaks, and there's such a thunder and lightning that I warrant all Oxford is up in arms! Out of your bed and take a brown bill in your hand! The latter day is come!
    Friar Bacon
    Miles, I come. Oh, passing warily watched!
    Bacon will make thee next himself in love.
    1645When spake the head?
    When spake the head? Did not you say that he should tell strange principles of philosophy? Why, sir, it speaks but two words at a time.
    Friar Bacon
    Why, villain, hath it spoken oft?
    Oft? Ay, marry, hath it thrice. But in all those three times it hath uttered but seven words.
    Friar Bacon
    As how?
    Marry, sir, the first time he said ‘Time is,' as if Fabius Cumentator should have pronounced a sentence. He said ‘Time was.' 1655And the third time, with thunder and lightning, as in great choler, he said ‘Time is past.'
    Friar Bacon
    'Tis past indeed. Ah, villain! Time is past:
    My life, my fame, my glory, all are past.
    Bacon, the turrets of thy hope are ruined down.
    1660Thy seven years' study lieth in the dust.
    Thy brazen head lies broken through a slave
    That watched, and would not when the head did will.
    What said the head first?
    Even, sir, ‘Time is.'
    1665Friar Bacon
    Villain, if thou hadst called to Bacon then,
    If thou hadst watched and waked the sleepy friar,
    The brazen head had uttered aphorisms
    And England had been circled round with brass.
    But proud Astaroth, ruler of the north,
    1670And Demogorgon, master of the fates,
    Grudge that a mortal man should work so much.
    Hell trembled at my deep commanding spells;
    Fiends frowned to see a man their overmatch.
    Bacon might boast more than a man might boast,
    1675But now the braves of Bacon hath an end;
    Europe's conceit of Bacon hath an end.
    His seven years' practice sorteth to ill end;
    And, villain, sith my glory hath an end,
    I will appoint thee fatal to some end.
    1680Villain, avoid! Get thee from Bacon's sight!
    Vagrant, go roam and range about the world,
    And perish as a vagabond on earth!
    Why then, sir, you forbid me your service?
    Friar Bacon
    My service, villain, with a fatal curse
    1685That direful plagues and mischief fall on thee!
    'Tis no matter. I am against you with the old proverb, ‘The more the fox is curst, the better he fares.' God be with you, sir. I'll take but a book in my hand, a wide-sleeved gown on my back, and a crowned cap on my head, and see if I can want 1690promotion.[Exit Miles.]
    Friar Bacon
    Some fiend or ghost haunt on thy weary steps
    Until they do transport thee quick to hell!
    For Bacon shall have never merry day
    To lose the fame and honor of his head.
    1695[Scene 11] [Video Sc.11]
    Enter [the] Emperor [of Germany], [the King of] Castile, [King] Henry, Eleanor, Edward, Lacy, [and] Rafe.
    Emperor of Germany
    [To Edward] Now, lovely prince, the prince of Albion's wealth,
    How fares the Lady Eleanor and you?
    What, have you courted and found Castile fit
    1700To answer England in equivalence?
    Will't be a match 'twixt bonny Nell and thee?
    Should Paris enter in the courts of Greece
    And not lie fettered in fair Helen's looks?
    Or Phoebus scape those piercing amorets
    1705That Daphne glance}d at his deity?
    Can Edward then sit by a flame and freeze,
    Whose heat puts Helen and fair Daphne down?
    Now, monarchs, ask the lady if we gree.
    King Henry
    What, madam, hath my son found grace or no?
    Seeing, my lord, his lovely counterfeit,
    And hearing how his mind and shape agreed,
    I come not trooped with all this warlike train
    Doubting of love, but so affectionate
    As Edward hath in England what he won in Spain.
    1715King of Castile
    [To King Henry] A match, my lord! These wantons needs must love.
    Men must have wives and women will be wed.
    Let's haste the day to honor up the rites.
    Sirrah Harry, shall Ned marry Nell?
    King Henry
    Ay, Rafe, how then?
    Marry, Harry, follow my counsel: send for Friar Bacon to marry them, for he'll so conjure him and her with his necromancy that they shall love together like pig and lamb whilst they live.
    King of Castile
    But hear'st thou, Rafe, art thou content to have 1725Eleanor to thy lady?
    Ay, so she will promise me two things.
    King of Castile
    What's that, Rafe?
    That she will never scold with Ned, nor fight with me.-- Sirrah Harry, I have put her down with a thing unpossible.
    1730King Henry
    What's that, Rafe?
    Why, Harry, did'st thou ever see that a woman could both hold her tongue and her hands? No, but when egg-pies grow on apple-trees, then will thy gray mare prove a bagpiper.
    [The King of Castile and Lacy stand apart and speak privately.]
    1735Emperor of Germany
    What say the lord of Castile and the earl of Lincoln, that they are in such earnest and secret talk?
    King of Castile
    I stand, my lord, amaze}d at his talk,
    How he discourseth of the constancy
    Of one surnamed for beauty's excellence
    1740The fair maid of merry Fressingfield.
    King Henry
    'Tis true, my lord, 'tis wondrous for to hear;
    Her beauty passing Mars's paramour,
    Her virgin's right as rich as Vesta's was.
    Lacy and Ned hath told me miracles.
    1745King of Castile
    What says Lord Lacy? Shall she be his wife?
    Or else Lord Lacy is unfit to live.--
    May it please your highness give me leave to post
    To Fressingfield, I'll fetch the bonny girl,
    And prove in true appearance at the court
    1750What I have vouche}d often with my tongue.
    King Henry
    Lacy, go to the querry of my stable,
    And take such coursers as shall fit thy turn.
    Hie thee to Fressingfield and bring home the lass;
    And, for her fame flies through the English coast,
    1755If it may please the Lady Eleanor,
    One day shall match your excellence and her.
    We Castile ladies are not very coy;
    Your highness may command a greater boon.
    And glad were I to grace the Lincoln earl
    1760With being partner of his marriage day.
    Gramercy, Nell, for I do love the lord
    As he that's second to myself in love.
    You love her? Madam Nell, never believe him you, though he swears he loves you.
    Why, Rafe?
    Why, his love is like unto a tapster's glass that is broken with every touch, for he loved the fair maid of Fressingfield once out of all ho.-- Nay, Ned, never wink upon me. I care not, I.
    King Henry
    Rafe tells all; you shall have a good secretary of him.--
    1770But, Lacy, haste thee post to Fressingfield,
    For ere thou hast fitted all things for her state
    The solemn marriage day will be at hand.
    I go, my lord.
    Exit Lacy.
    Emperor of Germany
    How shall we pass this day, my lord?
    1775King Henry
    To horse, my lord. The day is passing fair;
    We'll fly the partridge or go rouse the deer.--
    Follow, my lords. You shall not want for sport.
    [Scene 12] [Video Sc.12]
    Enter Friar Bacon with Friar Bungay to his cell.
    1780Friar Bungay
    What means the friar that frolicked it of late
    To sit as melancholy in his cell
    As if he had neither lost nor won today?
    Friar Bacon
    Ah, Bungay, my brazen head is spoiled,
    1785My glory gone, my seven years' study lost.
    The fame of Bacon bruited through the world
    Shall end and perish with this deep disgrace.
    Friar Bungay
    Bacon hath built foundation of his fame
    So surely on the wings of true report,
    1790With acting strange and uncouth miracles,
    As this cannot infringe what he deserves.
    Friar Bacon
    Bungay, sit down, for by prospective skill
    I find this day shall fall out ominous.
    Some deadly act shall 'tide me ere I sleep,
    1795But what and wherein little can I guess.
    Friar Bungay
    My mind is heavy whatsoe'er shall hap.
    Friar Bacon
    Who's that knocks?
    1800Friar Bungay
    [Opening the door.]Two scholars that desire to speak with you.
    Friar Bacon
    Bid them come in. [Enter two Scholars, sons to Lambert and Serlsby.] Now, my youths, what would you have?
    1 Scholar
    Sir, we are Suffolk men and neighboring friends,
    Our fathers in their countries lusty squires.
    Their lands adjoin: in Crackfield mine doth dwell,
    1805And his in Laxfield. We are college mates,
    Sworn brothers, as our fathers live as friends.
    Friar Bacon
    To what end is all this?
    2 Scholar
    Hearing your worship kept within your cell
    A glass prospective wherein men might see
    1810Whatso their thoughts or hearts' desires could wish,
    We come to know how that our fathers fare.
    Friar Bacon
    My glass is free for every honest man.
    Sit down and you shall see ere long
    How or in what state your friendly fathers live.
    1815Meanwhile, tell me your names.
    1 Scholar
    Mine Lambert.
    2 Scholar
    And mine Serlsby.
    Friar Bacon
    Bungay, I smell there will be a tragedy.
    Enter [as in the magic glass] Lambert and Serlsby, with rapiers and daggers.
    Serlsby, thou hast kept thine hour like a man.
    Th'art worthy of the title of a squire
    That durst for proof of thy affection,
    And for thy mistress's favor, prize thy blood.
    Thou knowst what words did pass at Fressingfield,
    1825Such shameless braves as manhood cannot brook.
    Ay, for I scorn to bear such piercing taunts,
    Prepare thee, Serlsby; one of us will die.
    Thou seest I single thee the field,
    And what I spake I'll maintain with my sword.
    1830Stand on thy guard! I cannot scold it out,
    And if thou kill me, think I have a son
    That lives in Oxford in the Broadgates Hall,
    Who will revenge his father's blood with blood.
    And, Serlsby, I have there a lusty boy
    1835That dares at weapon buckle with thy son,
    And lives in Broadgates too, as well as thine.
    But draw thy rapier, for we'll have a bout.
    Friar Bacon
    Now, lusty younkers, look within the glass
    And tell me if you can discern your sires.
    18401 Scholar
    Serlsby, 'tis hard. Thy father offers wrong
    To combat with my father in the field.
    2 Scholar
    Lambert, thou liest. My father's is the abuse,
    And thou shalt find it, if my father harm.
    Friar Bungay
    How goes it, sirs?
    18451 Scholar
    Our fathers are in combat hard by Fressingfield.
    Friar Bacon
    Sit still, my friends, and see the event.
    Why stand'st thou, Serlsby? Doubt'st thou of thy life?
    A veny, man. Fair Margaret craves so much.
    Then this, for her! [They fight.]
    18501 Scholar
    Ah, well thrust!
    2 Scholar
    But mark the ward.
    They [Lambert and Serlsby] fight and kill each other.
    Oh, I am slain!
    And I! Lord have mercy on me!
    18551 Scholar
    My father slain! Serlsby, ward that!
    2 Scholar
    And so is mine, Lambert. I'll quite thee well.
    The two Scholars stab one another.
    Friar Bungay
    O strange stratagem!
    Friar Bacon
    See, friar, where the fathers both lie dead.
    1860Bacon, thy magic doth effect this massacre.
    This glass prospective worketh many woes,
    And therefore, seeing these brave lusty brutes,
    These friendly youths, did perish by thine art,
    End all thy magic and thine art at once.
    1865The poniard that did end the fatal lives
    Shall break the cause efficiat of their woes.
    So fade the glass, and end with it the shows
    That necromancy did infuse the crystal with!
    He breaks the glass.
    1870Friar Bungay
    What means learned Bacon thus to break his glass?
    Friar Bacon
    I tell thee, Bungay, it repents me sore
    That ever Bacon meddled in this art.
    The hours I have spent in pyromantic spells,
    The fearful tossing in the latest night
    1875Of papers full of necromantic charms,
    Conjuring and adjuring devils and fiends
    With stole and alb and strange pentaganon,
    The wresting of the holy name of God,
    As Sother, Eloim, and Adonai,
    1880Alpha, Manoth, and Tetragrammaton,
    With praying to the five-fold powers of heaven,
    Are instances that Bacon must be damned
    For using devils to countervail his God.
    Yet, Bacon, cheer thee, drown not in despair.
    1885Sins have their salves; repentance can do much.
    Think mercy sits where Justice holds her seat,
    And from those wounds those bloody Jews did pierce,
    Which by thy magic oft did bleed afresh,
    From thence for thee the dew of mercy drops,
    1890To wash the wrath of high Jehovah's ire
    And make thee as a newborn babe from sin.
    Bungay, I'll spend the remnant of my life
    In pure devotion, praying to my God
    That he would save what Bacon vainly lost.
    [Exeunt Bacon and Bungay with the bodies.]
    1895[Scene 13] [Video Sc.13]
    Enter Margaret in nun's apparel, [the] Keeper, her Father, and their Friend.
    Margaret, be not so headstrong in these vows.
    Oh, bury not such beauty in a cell
    That England hath held famous for the hue!
    1900Thy father's hair, like to the silver blooms
    That beautify the shrubs of Africa,
    Shall fall before the dated time of death,
    Thus to forego his lovely Margaret.
    Ah, father, when the harmony of heaven
    1905Soundeth the measures of a lively faith,
    The vain illusions of this flattering world
    Seem odious to the thoughts of Margaret.
    I loved once. Lord Lacy was my love,
    And now I hate myself for that I loved,
    1910And doted more on him than on my God.
    For this I scourge myself with sharp repents.
    But now the touch of such aspiring sins
    Tells me all love is lust but love of heavens,
    That beauty used for love is vanity.
    1915The world contains naught but alluring baits,
    Pride, flattery, and inconstant thoughts.
    To shun the pricks of death I leave the world,
    And vow to meditate on heavenly bliss,
    To live in Framlingham a holy nun,
    1920Holy and pure in conscience and in deed,
    And for to wish all maids to learn of me
    To seek heaven's joy before earth's vanity.
    And will you then, Margaret, be shorn a nun, and so leave us all?
    Now, farewell world, the engine of all woe;
    Farewell to friends! And father! Welcome, Christ.
    Adieu to d ainty robes! This base attire
    Better befits an humble mind to God
    Than all the show of rich habiliments.
    1930Love, oh love, and with fond love, farewell!
    Sweet Lacy, whom I loved once so dear,
    Ever be well, but never in my thoughts
    Lest I offend to think on Lacy's love.
    But even to that, as to the rest, farewell!
    1935Enter Lacy, Warren, [and] Ermsby, booted and spurred.
    Come on, my wags, we're near the Keeper's lodge.
    Here have I oft walked in the watery meads,
    And chatted with my lovely Margaret.
    Sirrah Ned, is not this the Keeper?
    'Tis the same.
    The old lecher hath gotten holy mutton to him. A nun, my lord!
    Keeper, how farest thou? Holla, man, what cheer?
    How doth Peggy, thy daughter and my love?
    Ah, good my lord. Oh, woe is me for Peg!
    See where she stands, clad in her nun's attire,
    Ready for to be shorn in Framlingham.
    She leaves the world because she left your love.
    Oh, good my lord, persuade her if you can!
    Why, how now, Margaret; what, a malcontent?
    A nun? What holy father taught you this,
    To task yourself to such a tedious life
    As die a maid? 'Twere injury to me
    To smother up such beauty in a cell.
    Lord Lacy, thinking of thy former miss,
    How fond the prime of wanton years were spent
    In love. Oh, fie upon that fond conceit
    Whose hap and essence hangeth in the eye!
    I leave both love and love's content at once,
    1960Betaking me to Him that is true love,
    And leaving all the world for love of Him.
    Whence, Peggy, comes this metamorphosis?
    What, shorn a nun? And I have from the court
    Posted with coursers to convey thee hence
    1965To Windsor where our marriage shall be kept.
    Thy wedding robes are in the tailor's hands.
    Come, Peggy, leave these peremptory vows.
    Did not my lord resign his interest
    And make divorce 'twixt Margaret and him?
    'Twas but to try sweet Peggy's constancy.
    But will fair Margaret leave her love and lord?
    Is not heaven's joy before earth's fading bliss,
    And life above sweeter than life in love?
    Why then Margaret will be shorn a nun?
    Margaret hath made a vow which may not be revoked.
    We cannot stay, my lord, an if she be so strict.
    Our leisure grants us not to woo afresh.
    Choose you, fair damsel. Yet the choice is yours:
    Either a solemn nunnery or the court,
    1980God or Lord Lacy. Which contents you best?
    To be a nun, or else Lord Lacy's wife?
    A good motion.-- Peggy, your answer must be short.
    The flesh is frail. My lord doth know it well
    That when he comes with his enchanting face,
    1985Whate'er betide I cannot say him nay.
    [Removing her nun's apparel.] Off goes the habit of a maiden's heart,
    And seeing Fortune will, fair Framlingham
    And all the show of holy nuns, farewell!
    Lacy for me, if he will be my lord.
    Peggy, thy lord, thy love, thy husband!
    Trust me, by truth of knighthood, that the king
    Stays for to marry matchless Eleanor
    Until I bring thee richly to the court,
    That one day may both marry her and thee.--
    1995How say'st thou, Keeper? Art thou glad of this?
    As if the English king had given
    The park and deer of Fressingfield to me.
    I pray thee, my lord of Sussex, why art thou in a brown study?
    To see the nature of women, that be they never so near God, yet they love to die in a man's arms.
    What have you fit for breakfast? We have hied and posted all this night to Fressingfield.
    Butter and cheese and humbles of a deer,
    2005Such as poor keepers have within their lodge.
    And not a bottle of wine?
    We'll find one for my lord.
    Come, Sussex, let's in. We shall have more, for she speaks least to hold her promise sure.
    2010[Scene 14] [Video Sc.14]
    Enter a devil to seek Miles.
    How restless are the ghosts of hellish spirits,
    When every charmer with his magic spells
    Calls us from nine-fold trenched Phlegeton,
    To scud and over-scour the earth in post
    2015Upon the speedy wings of swiftest winds!
    Now Bacon hath raised me from the darkest deep
    To search about the world for Miles his man--
    For Miles, and to torment his lazy bones
    For careless watching of his brazen head.
    2020See where he comes. Oh, he is mine.
    Enter Miles with a gown and a corner cap.
    A scholar, quoth you? Marry, sir, I would I had been made a bottle-maker when I was made a scholar, for I can get neither to 2025be a deacon, reader, nor schoolmaster; no, not the clerk of a parish. Some call me a dunce, another saith my head is as full of Latin as an egg's full of oatmeal. Thus I am tormented that the devil and Friar Bacon haunt me.-- Good Lord, here's one of my master's devils! I'll go speak to him.-- What, Master Plutus, 2030how cheer you?
    Dost thou know me?
    Know you, sir? Why, are not you one of my master's devils that were wont to come to my master Doctor Bacon at Brazennose?
    Yes, marry, am I.
    Good Lord, Master Plutus, I have seen you a thousand times at my master's, and yet I had never the manners to make you drink. But, sir, I am glad to see how conformable you are to the statute. [To the audience] I warrant you, he's as yeomanly a man as you shall see; 2040mark you, masters, here's a plain honest man, without welt or guard.-- [To the devil.] But I pray you, sir, do you come lately from hell?
    Ay, marry. How then?
    Faith, 'tis a place I have desired long to see. Have you not good tippling houses there? May not a man have a lusty fire there, 2045a pot of good ale, a pair of cards, a swingeing piece of chalk, and a brown toast that will clap a white waistcoat on a cup of good drink?
    All this you may have there.
    You are for me, friend, and I am for you. But I pray 2050you, may I not have an office there?
    Yes, a thousand. What wouldst thou be?
    By my troth, sir, in a place where I may profit myself. I know hell is a hot place, and men are marvelous dry, and much drink is spent there. I would be a tapster.
    Thou shalt.
    There's nothing lets me from going with you but that 'tis a long journey and I have never a horse.
    Thou shalt ride on my back.
    Now surely here's a courteous devil, that for to 2060pleasure his friend will not stick to make a jade of himself.-- But I pray you, goodman friend, let me move a question to you.
    What's that?
    I pray you, whether is your pace a trot or an amble?
    An amble.
    'Tis well. But take heed it be not a trot. But 'tis no matter; I'll prevent it. [He puts on spurs.]
    What dost?
    Marry, friend, I put on my spurs. For if I find your pace either a trot or else uneasy, I'll put you to a false gallop. I'll make 2070you feel the benefit of my spurs.
    Get up upon my back.
    Oh Lord, here's even a goodly marvel when a man rides to hell on the devil's back!
    Exeunt roaring.
    [Scene 15] [Video Sc.15]
    Enter the Emperor [of Germany] with a pointless sword, next the King of 2075Castile carrying a sword with a point, Lacy carrying the globe, [Prince] Ed[ward], Warr[en] carrying a rod of gold with a dove on it, Ermsby with a crown and scepter, [Princess Eleanor] with [Margaret] the fair maid of Fressingfield [and countess of Lincoln] on her left hand, [King] Henry, Bacon, with other Lords attending.
    [Kneeling] Great potentates, earth's miracles for state,
    Think that Prince Edward humbles at your feet,
    And for these favors, on his martial
    He vows perpetual homage to your selves,
    Yielding these honors unto Eleanor. [He rises.]
    2085King Henry
    Gramercies, lordlings. Old Plantagenet
    That rules and sways the Albion diadem,
    With tears discovers these conceive}d joys,
    And vows requital if his men-at-arms,
    The wealth of England, or due honors done
    2090To Eleanor, may quite his favorites.
    But all this while, what say you to the dames
    That shine like to the crystal lamps of heaven?
    Emperor of Germany
    If but a third were added to these two,
    They did surpass those gorgeous images
    2095That gloried Ida with rich beauty's wealth.
    [Kneeling] 'Tis I, my lords, who humbly on my knee
    Must yield her orisons to mighty Jove
    For lifting up his handmaid to this state;
    Brought from her homely cottage to the court
    2100And graced with kings, princes, and emperors,
    To whom (next to the noble Lincoln earl)
    I vow obedience and such humble love
    As may a handmaid to such mighty men. [She rises.]
    Thou martial man that wears the Almain crown,
    2105And you, the western potentates of might,
    The Albion princess, English Edward's wife,
    Proud that the lovely star of Fressingfield,
    Fair Margaret, countess to the Lincoln earl,
    Attends on Eleanor--gramercies, lord, for her--
    2110'Tis I give thanks for Margaret to you all,
    And rest, for her, due bounden to yourselves.
    King Henry
    Seeing the marriage is solemnized,
    Let's march in triumph to the royal feast.--
    But why stands Friar Bacon here so mute?
    2115Friar Bacon
    Repentant for the follies of my youth
    That magic's secret mysteries misled,
    And joyful that this royal marriage
    Portends such bliss unto this matchless realm.
    King Henry
    Why, Bacon, what strange event shall happen to this land?
    2120Or what shall grow from Edward and his queen?
    Friar Bacon
    I find by deep prescience of mine art,
    Which once I tempered in my secret cell,
    That here, where Brut did build his Troynovant,
    From forth the royal garden of a king
    2125Shall flourish out so rich and fair a bud,
    Whose brightness shall deface proud Phoebus's flower
    And overshadow Albion with her leaves.
    Till then, Mars shall be master of the field,
    But then the stormy threats of wars shall cease;
    2130The horse shall stamp as careless of the pike;
    Drums shall be turned to timbrels of delight.
    With wealthy favors plenty shall enrich
    The strand that gladded wandering Brut to see,
    And peace from heaven shall harbor in these leaves
    2135That gorgeous beautify this matchless flower.
    Apollo's heliotropian then shall stoop,
    And Venus's hyacinth shall vail her top;
    Juno shall shut her gillyflowers up,
    And Pallas's bay shall bash her brightest green;
    2140Ceres's carnation in consort with those
    Shall stoop and wonder at Diana's rose.
    King Henry
    This prophesy is mystical.--
    But, glorious commanders of Europa's love,
    That make fair England like that wealthy isle
    2145Circled with Gihon and first Euphrates,
    In royalizing Henry's Albion
    With presence of your princely mightiness,
    Let's march. The tables all are spread,
    And viands such as England's wealth affords
    2150Are ready set to furnish out the boards.
    You shall have welcome, mighty potentates;
    It rests to furnish up this royal feast
    Only your hearts be frolic, for the time
    Craves that we taste of naught but jouissance.
    2155Thus glories England over all the west.
    Exeunt omnes.
    Finis Friar Bacon, made by Robert Greene,
    Master of Arts.
    Omne tulit punctum qui miscuit utile dulci.