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  • Sennet. Enter KING HENRY VI, GLOUCESTER, and EXETER

  • Have you perused the letters from the pope,
    The emperor and the Earl of Armagnac?

  • I have, my lord: and their intent is this:
    They humbly sue unto your excellence
    To have a godly peace concluded of
    Between the realms of England and of France.

  • How doth your grace affect their motion?

  • Well, my good lord; and as the only means
    To stop effusion of our Christian blood
    And 'stablish quietness on every side.

  • Ay, marry, uncle; for I always thought
    It was both impious and unnatural
    That such immanity and bloody strife
    Should reign among professors of one faith.

  • Beside, my lord, the sooner to effect
    And surer bind this knot of amity,
    The Earl of Armagnac, near knit to Charles,
    A man of great authority in France,
    Proffers his only daughter to your grace
    In marriage, with a large and sumptuous dowry.

  • Marriage, uncle! alas, my years are young!
    And fitter is my study and my books
    Than wanton dalliance with a paramour.
    Yet call the ambassador; and, as you please,
    So let them have their answers every one:
    I shall be well content with any choice
    Tends to God's glory and my country's weal.

  • Enter CARDINAL OF WINCHESTER in Cardinal's habit,
    a Legate and two Ambassadors

  • What! is my Lord of Winchester install'd,
    And call'd unto a cardinal's degree?
    Then I perceive that will be verified
    Henry the Fifth did sometime prophesy,
    'If once he come to be a cardinal,
    He'll make his cap co-equal with the crown.'

  • My lords ambassadors, your several suits
    Have been consider'd and debated on.
    And therefore are we certainly resolved
    To draw conditions of a friendly peace;
    Which by my Lord of Winchester we mean
    Shall be transported presently to France.

  • And for the proffer of my lord your master,
    I have inform'd his highness so at large
    As liking of the lady's virtuous gifts,
    Her beauty and the value of her dower,
    He doth intend she shall be England's queen.

  • In argument and proof of which contract,
    Bear her this jewel, pledge of my affection.
    And so, my lord protector, see them guarded
    And safely brought to Dover; where inshipp'd
    Commit them to the fortune of the sea.

  • Exeunt all but CARDINAL OF WINCHESTER and Legate

  • Stay, my lord legate: you shall first receive
    The sum of money which I promised
    Should be deliver'd to his holiness
    For clothing me in these grave ornaments.

  • I will attend upon your lordship's leisure.

  • Aside Now Winchester will not submit, I trow,
    Or be inferior to the proudest peer.
    Humphrey of Gloucester, thou shalt well perceive
    That, neither in birth or for authority,
    The bishop will be overborne by thee:
    I'll either make thee stoop and bend thy knee,
    Or sack this country with a mutiny.