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and when the ship was going through the water with all the stress of oars and sails, she struck upon a rock, called the Catee-raze, with such violence that several planks were started, and she instantly began to fill. A boat was immediately lowered, and the Prince was escaping in it, - which he might easily have done, for the shore was at no great distance, when his sister, whom there had been no time to take off, or who in the horror of the moment had been forgotten, shrieked out to him to save her. It was better to die than turn a deaf ear to that call he ordered the boat to put back and take her in; but such numbers leapt into it at the same time that the boat was swamped and all perished. The ship also presently went down with all on board: only two persons, the one a young noble, son of Gilbert de Aquila, the other a butcher of Rouen, saved themselves: by climbing the mast, and clinging to the top, they kept their heads above water. Fitzstephens rose after the vessel had sunk, and might have taken the same chance of preservation; but calling to mind, after the first instinctive effort, that he had been the unhappy `occasion of this great calamity, and dreading the reproaches, and perhaps the punishment that awaited him, he preferred present death as the least evil. The youth became exhausted during the night; and commending his poor companion to God's mercy with his last words, he lost his hold, and sunk. The butcher held on till morning, when he was seen from the shore and saved; and from him, being the only survivor, the circumstances of the tragedy were learnt.




Barfleur-near the Harbour.

Enter Prince William: Countess de la Perche-Lords, Ladies and Minstrels. Servitors with golden flagons. A confused noise of revelry is heard before they enter.

Prince (crowned with vine-leaves.)

faintness o'er the sky,

As if it paled to think its joy was over,

Here stand! There comes a

At sight of the white moon o'er yonder hill.

Countess. Moonlight is sweetest ever on the sea.
Prince. Then be thou happy, sister, for its horns
Point lovingly for England. To her health!

A brimming cup, brave friends, and then on board!—
Voices. A song! a song!

Prince. Sing, Eustace, with a voice

Fit for our bacchanal ears. We listen. Sing.

Eustace sings.

The sea foams white o'er rock and shoal,

And gathers to a heap,

Where the wild wind pipes, and the waters roll,

And high o'er the Godwins leap.

I hate the sea with land on our lea,
A merrier life for me!


A foam I know more dazzling white

Than waves o'er rock and shoal;

That dances and leaps with bound more light

Tis the bright wine in our bowl.—

I hate the sea with land on our lea,

A merrier life for me!


No rock lurks here, no shoal is found

In all this ocean wide!

But yet if there's one that is born to be drown'd-
There's depth enough in this tide.—

I hate the sea with land on our lea,

A merrier life for me.

Prince. Ill omen'd croaker, with your rock and shoal,
You've cast a shadow o'er my sister's face

That drowns the flush that wine and joy had given.
Countess. I think 'twere better to embark.-

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You heed not what an idle minstrel sings.

Countess. No, William; I should fear if he were pilot;

His hand would scarcely guide the helra so surely

As now it guides the tune along the chords

Prince (looking to the harbour.) Hark! mirth on board-'Tis right;

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I wish, dear brother,

They made not happiness so dolphin-like,
With so much of the fish in't; it may visit
Its native element. Let's stay the night :-
To morrow we shall sail, and if the wind
Blow not the harder, we shall catch the king
A sleeping in the calm.

No! we'll aboard:
And pass the silken sails where dallying winds
Do make their cradle not their working ground;
And scarce the lazy helmsman shall have time
To say an ave 'gainst a witch's presence
Ere the White Ship, with sixty silver oars,
Faint from his vision like a spectral shape;
And we shall touch the shores of England first,
Tho' Henry gained the start by six good hours.
You fear not, sister? See how calm the waves!
Lying in lazy folds like the huge snake

We saw, when gorged, coil up its glossy length
And sleep so calmly.

Countess. (alarmed.)

Dreaming of fresh food

And ready for the spring. Stay here the night

You are too happy; too o'erjoyed, my brother;

So crowned with these deep vine leaves that their spirit

Has slipt within, and your poor soul lies sleeping

Half buried 'neath the clusters of Champagne !

Prince. Then cover it all over! for no King

E'er rested 'neath so rich a canopy!

But here the Pilot comes. (Enter Pilot). What weather, master,
Hope we to night?

Pilot (flustered with wine.) I call it not weather at all— 'Tis but the corpse of weather, wanting breath,

As wanting breath man's but the corpse of man

So as you said, sir-(takes a flagon from servitor and drinks.)
Prince my service to ye-

Milksoppy weather-weather only fit

For painted boats; weather, where little maids
Some fifteen years or so, might stretch a helm
Of ostrich plume and steer a nautilus shell
As well as I could steer the good White ship.
Countess (more alarmed.)

When I was anything else.

Have you been long a pilot ?

Countess. And know the sea?

Never a time.

Pilot. As if I had married her like the Doge of Venice; And rule her better ;-and care less for her frowns

Than e'er a husband in the realm of France

[Music and dancing heard on board. Prince. Away! the sound of merry feet on deck Beats the pulsed air to music-Your fair hand;Sister-your heart holds a divided blood

Drawn from two founts, one kingly, one a churl's-
Let the red half find mastery in the struggle,

And glow 'mid terror like a rose in snow

Countess (with an effort.) The daughter of a King knows nought of terror: Come, brother; and the lightest step and voice

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The Castle in Dover-Henry-Hubert of Chester. Henry. So long detained, and not a wind in heaven To stir the pear-tree blossom.


Pleasure, sir,

Heeds not of wind-Along the shores of France
His Highness, doubtless, draws a line of light
With his ships' gilded prow-and into nooks
And calm recesses where the rivers creep,
Between high flowery banks, his course is borne
Up to the inland levels,-there they'll land

And dance, or sitting round some babbling fountain
Listen to Eustace' songs.


"Twould please me better

If William cared to share our troubles more

To taste his pleasures less. Once more, I pray you,

Go to the toppling cliff and watch their coming.

We sit in judgment here, and it were fit

Our heir should help this arm now feeble grown,

To bear the upright sword.

[Exit Hubert.

Enter Arnulf of Lancaster.-Yvo his son, bound; guards, &c.—

Is there no hope?

No throb of pity for a father's grief

Within that heart filled with a father's joys?

Henry. Arnulf of Lancaster, if lowlier state Were ours, we might have ears to hear the throb; But there's a tumult in the soul of kings

That drowns all voices save the trumpet tongue

Of justice; we have doom'd your son to death.

Yvo. As Heaven bears witness 'twas no treasonous aid

I promised to your Norman rebels.



Rests with the Judges who with searching eyes

Viewed the whole cause; their voice pronounced you guilty.

It fits not the King's office to withstand

The course of RIGHT, which as a mighty river,
Passing right onward from the throne of God,
Enriches every land through which it flows!
Woe be to him who checks that sacred stream,
Diverts it, stains it—or to fraudulent use
Turns its clear waters. They have doom'd your
I meddle not. I stir not.
Oh my liege!
He is mine only son. I say no word
Against the justice that has spoke the doom;
You are a King. Ah sir, you are a father

Now greyed with age as I am; we were young


Together, and our sons were friends and playmates ;-
If, as a King, your hand obdurate holds

The unbending scale, let Yvo owe his life

To mercy to the sweet companionship "Tween him and princely William.

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But to shew you that his heart
Is fixed as mine in such a cause as this,
You shall survive his coming by an hour.
But build no hope of safety on delay--
If you were nearer to my blood than he is
And you, brave Arnulf, were you twice my brother,
Nothing should change his fate. He dies. Retire.
Arnulf. You shall not hear me claim your ruth again.
Come, son, you've ever been my pride, my hope,
And now I see you dying pulse by pulse,

I would, sir king, I had known how hard your heart
Ere I had emptied these poor veins of blood
In Brenneville field-and you, my gallant Yvo,
You bled there too. I take you in my arms
And plant this woman's kiss upon your bro
Where late your dying mother's lips were placed;
Then to my lonely home, and desolate hearth.
Come Yvo-If the time should e'er arrive
That one soft word would save your William's life

I pray you think of this

[they are retiring.

I cannot bend


Enter Hubert-hurriedly-a Mariner.

Hubert. Oh sir, prepare encase your soul in steel For fierce and biting as a falchion's blade

The dreadful news I bring

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Hubert. Oh worse !-imprisoned in such binding chains That nought shall loose them till the judgment day! Henry. How? dead?


Even so-Here stands a man whose tongue

Shall frame the words mine has no power to utter

Henry. (to the Mariner.) Speak, and be bold; stand not in breathless


There is no greatness in a sonless King.

Mariner. 'Tis grief not fear.

Last night the crescent moon

Looked down on a calm deep without a wave

Doubtful of which was heaven and which was sea:

On the smooth water glided the White Ship
With mirth and music filling all the air—

My lord the Prince and Countess de la Perche-
Henry. My Marie too!-proceed—

-Headed the band

Of Knights and noble ladies in the dance;
Goblets went round, and from the fiery lip
Of passion gush'd, at times, the stream of song.
Seated in groups, hiding them from the moon
Behind the shadowing mast, the brave and fair
Looked o'er the side and counted as they dript
The pearls that sparkled from the chiming oars,
Or talked of home, and pressed each other's hands.
Sudden a shock startled that happy dream!
The blinded Helmsman reeling from his cup,
Looked round in vain. Another shock! Ah me!
And the white ship groan'd like a living thing
As the black waters rushed within her planks,
And mingled with the screams and shouts and fears
That filled all hearts and ears. But soon a boat
Was hauled to th' side ;-within it stept the Prince,-
And ere the rest could follow, the brave crew
Which manned it, pushed away;—a look he cast

On the now reeling ship, and at the side

-Her clasp'd hands raised within the calm moon light,
And nothing saying,—the young Countess stood :
"Back! back again!" we heard Prince William say
"My sister must be saved or I will die."

Henry. Thank God for that!


And back he forced the boat,-
But when within the spring of desperate men,
The small boat came, leaping as if from death,
But finding death more surely by their leap,
Knight, noble, seaman-aye, the timorous maid

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