Friedrich Schiller.

The works of Frederick Schiller, translated from the German (Volume 3) online

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(jHAS. . Our way lies over the Loire. Du Chatel!

See all our equipage embarked.
DuKOis [quickly to Sorel). Farewell !

[He turns quickly round, and goes out. — T%e Sena^
TOBS follow.

A a


SoREL {wringing her hands in despair).

0, if he goes, we are forsaken quite J

— Follow, La Hire I seek to soften him !

[La Hibe goes out


Charles, Sorel, Du Chatel.
Chas. Is, then, the sceptre such a peerless treasure ?

Is it so hard to loose it from our grasp ?

Believe me, 'tis more galling to endure

The domineering rule of these proud vassals.

To be dependent on their will and pleasure

Is, to a noble heart, more bitter far

Than to submit to fate.

[To Du Chatel, who still lingert
Du Chatel, go,

And do what I commanded !
Du Chatel [throws himself at the 'Ki'so's feet).

Oh, my King !
Chas. No more ! Thou'st heard my absolute resolve !
Chatel. Sire ! with the Duke of Burgundy make peace !

"Tis the sole outlet from destruction left !
Chas. . Thou giv'st this counsel, and thy blood alone

Can ratify this peace ?
Du Chatel. Here is my head.

I oft have risked it for thee in the fight,

And with a joyful spirit I, for thee.

Would lay it down upon the block of death.

Conciliate the Duke ! Deliver me

To the full measure of his wrath, and let

My flowing blood appease the ancient hate !
Charles (looks at him for some time in silence, and with deep

Can it be tme ? Am I, then, sunk so low.

That even friends, who read my inmost heart,

Point out, for my escape, the path of shame?

Yes, now I recognise my abject fall.

My honour is no more contided in.
Chatel. Reflect —
Charles. Be silent, and me not!

Had I ten realms, on which to turn my back,


With my friend's life I would not purchase them
— Do what I have commanded. Hence, and see
My equipage embarked.
Du Chatel. 'Twill speedily

Be done.

[He stands up ana retires. — Agnes Sorel iceef^

Scene VII.
The Royal Palace at Chinon.
Charles, Agnes Sorel.
Charles [seizing the hand of Agnes).

My Agnes, be not sorrowful !
Beyond the Loire we still shall find a France ;
We are departing to a happier land,
Where laughs a milder, an unclouded sky,
And gales more genial blow ; we there shall meet
More gentle manners ; song abideth there,
And love and life in richer beauty bloom
Sorel. Oh, must I contemplate this day of wo !

The King must roam in banishment ! the son
Depart, an exile from his father's house,
And turn his back upon his childhood's home !
pleasant, happy land, that we forsake,
Ne'er shall we tread thee joyously again !

Scene VIII.
La Hire returns, Charles, Sorel.
Sorel. You come alone ? You do not bring him back ?

[Observing him more closely
La Hire! What news? What does that look ami ounce'
Some new calamity?
La Hire. Calamity

Hath spent itself ; sunshine is now retum'd
Sorel What is it? I implore you.
La Hire [to the King). Summon back

The delegates from Orleans !
Charles. Why ? What is it ?

Hire. . Summon them back ! Thy fortune is reversed.

A battle has been fought, and thou hast couquer'd

A A '^


SoKET.. Conquer 'd ! heavenly music of that vrord !
Ohas. . La Hire ! A fabulous report deceives thee :

Conquer'd ! — In conquest I believe no more
Hire. Still greater wonders thou wilt soon believe.

— Here cometh the Archbishop. To thine anna

He leadeth back Dunois. —
SoREL. beauteous flower

Of victory, which doth the heavenly fruits

Of peace and reconcilement bear at once 1

Scene IX.

The same, Archbishop of Rheims, Dunois, Du Chatel, ivith
Raoul, a Knight in armour.

Archbishop [leading Dunois to the Kjng, and joining their
Princes, embrace ! Let rage and discord cease.
Since Heaven itself hath for our cause declared.

[Dunois embraces the Kiuo

Chas. Relieve my wonder and perplexity.

What may this solemn earaestness portend?
Whence this unlook'd for change of fortune ?

Archbishop [leads the Knight forward, and presents him to
the IviNG). Speak I

Raoul. We had assembled sixteen regiments

Of Lotharingian troops, to join your host ;

And Baudricourt, a Knight of Vaucouleurs,

Was our commander. Having gain'd the heights

By Vermanton, we wound our downward way

Into the valley water'd by the Yonne ;

There, in the plain before us, lay the foe.

And when we turn'd, arms glitter 'd in our rear.

We saw ourselves surrounded by two hosts.

And could not hope for conquest or for flight.

Then sank the bravest heart, and in despair

We all prepared to lay our weapons down.

The leaders with each other anxiously

Sought counsel and fomid none, — when to our eyes

A spectacle of wonder show'd itself !

For suddenly from forth the thickets' depths


A maiden, on her liead a polish'd helm,
Like a war-goddess, issued ; terrible
Yet lovely was her aspect, and her hair
In dusky ringlets round her shoulders fell.
A heavenly radiance shone around the height ;
When she upraised her voice and thus address'd us:
" Why be dismay 'd, brave Frenchmen? On the foel
Were tliey more numerous than the ocean sands,
God and the holy Maiden lead you on !"
Then quickly from the standard-bearer's hand
She snatch'd the banner, and before our troop
With valiant bearing strode the wondrous maid
Silent with awe, scarce knowing what we did,
The banner and the Maiden we pursue,
And lired with ardour, rush upon the foe,
Who, much amazed, stand motionless and view
The miracle with fix'd and wondering gaze. —
Then, as if seized by terror sent from God,
They suddenly betake themselves to flight,
And casting arms and armour to the ground,
Disperse in wild disorder o'er the field.
No leader's call, no signal now avails ;
Senseless from terror, without looldng back,
Horses and men plunge headlong in the stream,
Where they without resistance are despatch'd.
It was a slaughter rather than a fight !
Two thousand of the foe bestrew'd the field,
Not reckoning numbers swallow'd by the flood.
While of our company not one was slain.
Chas. 'Tis strange, by Heaven ! most wonderful and strange i
SoREi A maiden work'd this miracle, you say?

Whence did she come? Who is she?
Raovi , Who she is

She will reveal to no one but the King !
She calls herself a seer and prophetess
Ordain "d by God, and promises to raise
The siege of Orleans ere the moon shall change.
The people credit her, and thirst for war.
The host she follows — she'll be here anon.

[The ringing of bells u heard, together with the
clang oj arms.


Hark to the diu ! The pealing of the bells !
'Tis she ! The people greet God's messenger.
Charles {to Du Chatel).

Conduct her hither. — [To the Abchbishop

What should I beheve ?
A maiden brings me conquest even now,
When nought can save me but a hand divine !
This is not in the common course of things.
And dare I here believe a miracle ?
Many Voices (beliind the scene).

Hail to the Maiden! — the deliverer!
Chas . She comes! Dunois, now occupy my place !
We will make trial of this wond'rous maid.
Is she indeed inspired and sent by God,
She will be able to discern the King.

[Dunois seats himself ; the King stands at his
right hand, Agnes Sorel near him; the
Archbishop and the others opposite; so that
the intermediate space remains vacant

Scene X.

The same. Johanna, accompanied by the Councillors and
many Knights, icho occupy the background of the scene; she
advances icith noble bearing, and slowly surveys the com-

Dunois {after a long and solemn pause).

Art thou the wond'rous Maiden —
Johanna {interrupts him, 'regarding him tdth dignity).
Bastard of Orleans, thou wilt tempt thy God!
This place abandon, which becomes thee not!
To this more mighty one the Maid is sent.

[With a firm step she approaches the King, bows
one knee before him, and, rising immediately,
steps back. All present express their astonish-
ment, Dunois forsakes his seat, which is occu
pied by the Kino.
Chas. . Maiden, thou ne'er hast seen my face before.

Whence hast thou then this knowledge ?
Johanna Tliee I sftvr

so IX.]



When none beside, save God in heaven, beheld thee
[She approaches the King a)id speaks mysteriously
Bethinli thee, Dauphin, in the bygone night !
When all around lay buried in deep sleep,
Thou from thy couch didst rise and offer up
An earnest prayer to God. Let these retire
And I -vN-ill name the subject of thy prayer.

CiiAS. . What I to Heaven confided need not be

From men conceal'd. Disclose to me my prayer.
And I shall doubt no more that God inspires thee

JoHAN. Three prayers thou otfer'dst, Dauphin; listen now
Whether I name them to thee ! Thou didst pray
That if there were appended to this crown
Unjust possession, or if heavy guilt,
Not yet atoned for, from thy father's times,
Occasion'd this most lamentable war,
God would accept thee as a sacrifice,
Have mercy on thy people, and pour forth
Upon thy head the chalice of his wrath.

Chables (steps back tcith aice).

"\Vho art thou, mighty one ? Whence comest thou?

[All express their astonishment,

JoHAN. To God thou offeredst this second prayer :
That if it were His will and high decree
To take away the sceptre from thy race.
And from thee to withdraw whate'er thy sires.
The monarchs of this kingdom, once possess'd.
He in his mercy would preserve to thee
Three priceless treasures — a contented heart,
Thy friend's affection, and thine Agnes' love.

[2 he King conceals his face: the spectators
press their astonishment. — After a pause,
Thy third petition shall I name to thee?

Chas. . Enough — I credit thee ! This doth surpass

Mere human knowledge . thou art sent by God !

Abchb. Who art thou, wonderf-il and holy maid ?

What favour'd region bore thee? What blest pair,
Belov'd of Heaven, mav claim thee as their child?

JcHAV. Most reverend father, 1 am nam'd Johanna,
I am a shepherd's lowly daughter, boru
In Dom Remi, a village of my Iving,



Included in the diocese of Toul,

And from a child I kept my father's sheep.

— And much and frequently I heard them tell

Of the strange islanders, who o'er the sea

Had come to make us slaves, and on us force

A foreign lord, who loveth not the people;

How the great city, Paris, they had seized,

And had usurp 'd dominion o'er the realm.

Then earnestly God's Mother I implor'd

To save us from the shame of foreign chains,

And to preserve to us our lawful King.

Not distant from my native village stands

All ancient image of the Virgin blest.

To which the pious pilgrims oft repair'd ;

Hard by a holy oak, of blessed power,

Standeth, far-fam'd through wondei's manifold.

Beneath the oak's broad shade I lov'd to sit,

Tending my flock — my heart still drew me there

And if by chance among the desert hills

A lambkin strayed, 'twas shown me in a dream,

"When in the shadow of this oak I slept.

— And once, when through the night beneath this tree

In pious adoration I had sat,

Resisting sleep, the Holy One appear 'd,

Bearing a sword and banner, otherwise

Clad like a shepherdess, and thus she spake: —

" 'Tis I ; arise, Johanna ! leave thy flock.

The Lord appoints thee to another task !

Receive this banner ! Gird thee with this sword !

Therewith exterminate my people's foes ;

Conduct to Rheims thy royal master's son,

And crown him with the kingly diadem !"

And I made answer: " How may I presume

To undertake such deeds, a tender maid,

Unpractis'd in the dreadful art of war!"

And she replied : " A maiden pure and chaste

Achieves whate'er on earth is glorious,

If she to earthly love ne'er yields her heart.

Look upon me ! a virgin, like thyself;

I to the Christ, the Lord divine, gave birth,

Aud am myself divine !" — Mine eyelids then


She touch'd, and when T upward tnrn'd my gaze ;
Heaven's wide expanse was fiU'd Anth angel-boys,
Who bore white lilies in their hands, while tones
Of sweetest music floated through the air.
— And thus on three successive nights appear'd
The Holy One, and cried — " Arise, Johanna!
The Lord appoints thee to another task!"
And when the third night she reveal'd herself,
Wrathful she seem'd, and chiding spake these words
" Obedience, woman's duty here on earth ;
Severe endurance is her heavy doom ;
She must be purified through discipline ;
Who serve th here, is glorified above !"
While thus she spake, she let her shepherd garb
Fall from her, and as Queen of Heaven stood forth,
Enshrined in radiant light, while golden clouds
Upbore her slowly to the realms of bliss.

[All are moved ; Agnes Sorel weeping, Jiides her
face on the bosom of the Kin g.

AeCHBISHOP {after a long pause).

Before divine credentials such as these
Each doubt of earthly prudence must subside
Her deeds attest the truth of what she speaks,
For God alone such wonders can achieve.

DuNOis. I credit not her wonders, but her eyes,
Which beam with innocence and purity.

Chas. . Am T, a sinner, worthy of such favour?
Infallible, All-searching eye, thou seest
Mine inmost heart, my deep humility !

JoHAN. Humility shines brightly in the skies ;

Thou art abased, hence God exalteth thee.

Chas. . Shall I indeed wdthstand mine enemies ?

JoHAN. France I will lay submissive at thy feet !
I Chas. . And Orleans, say'st thou, will not be surrender'd?
' JoHAN. The Loire shall sooner roll its waters back.

Chas. . Shall I in triumph enter into Rheims?

JoHAN. I through ten thousand foes will lead thee there.

[The knights make a noise with their lances and
shields, and evince signs of courage.

DuNors. Appoint the Maiden to command the host!



;ACT 1

We follow blindly wheresoe'er she leads ,
The holy one's prophetic eye shall guide,
And this brave sword from danger shall protect her!
HiBE. . A universe in arms we will not fear,

If she, the mighty one, precede our troops.
The God of battle walketh by her side ;
Let her conduct us on to victory !

[T/ie Knights clang their arms and press forw a/ro
Chas. . Yes, holy Maiden, do thou lead mine host ;
My chiefs and warriors shall submit to thee.
This sword of matchless temper, proved in war
Sent back in anger by the Constable,
Hath found a hand more worthy. Prophetess,
Do thou receive it, and henceforward be —
JoHAN. No, noble Daup^ain ! conquest to my Liege
Is not accorded through this instrument
Of earthly might. I know another sword
Wherewith I am to conquer, which to thee,
I, as the Spirit taught, will indicate ;
Let it be hither brought.
Chakles. Name it, Johanna.

JoHAN. Send to the ancient town of Fierbois ;

There in Saint Catherine's churchyard is a vault
Where lie in heaps the spoils of bygone war.
Among them is the sword, which I must use.
It, by three golden lilies may be known,
Upon the blade impress'd. Let it be brought,
For thou, my Liege, shalt conquer through this sword.
Chas . Perform what she commands

Johanna. And a white banner,

Edg'd with a purple border, let me bear.
Upon this banner let the Queen of Heaven
Be pictur'd, with the beauteous Jesus child,
Floating in glory o'er this earthly ball.
For so the Holy Mother show'd it me.
Chas. . So be it as thou sayest
Johanna {to the Archbishop). Reverend Bishop-;
, Lay on my head thy consecrated hands!

I'ronounce a blessing, Father, on tliy child I

[She kneeU dovm

8C XI.]



Abch. Not blessings to receive, but to dispense

Art thou appointed. — Go, with power divine !
But we are sinners all and most unworthy.

[She rises : a Page enters.
Page. A herald from the English generals.
JoHAN. Let him appear, for he is sent by God !

\The King motions to the Page, who retires

Scene XI.
The Herald. The same.
Chas. . Thy tidings, HOTald ? What thy message ? Speak !
Her. . Who is it, who for Charles of Valois,

The Count of Pointhieu, in this presence speaks ?
DuNOis. Unworthy Herald ! base, insulting knave !

Dost thou presume the Monarch of the French

Thus in his own dominions to deny ?

Thou art protected by thine office, else —
Her. One king alone is recognised by France,

And he resideth in the English camp.
Chas . Peace, peace, good cousin ! Speak thy message, Heraid !
Her. . My noble general laments the blood

Which hath already flow'd, and still must flow.

Hence, in the scabbard holding back the sword.

Before by storm the town of Orleans falls,

He offers thee an amicable treaty.
Chas. . Proceed!
Johanna {stepping forward).

Permit me, Dauphin, in thy stead.

To parley with this herald.
Charles. Do so. Maid !

Determine thou, for peace, or bloody war.
Johanna (to the Herald).

Whosendeth thee? Who speaketh through thy mouth?
Her. The Earl of Salisbury; the British chief.
Johan. Herald, 'tis false ! The earl speaks not through thee.

Only the living speak, the dead are silent.
Her. . The earl is well, and full of lusty strength;

He lives to bring down ruin on your heads.
Johan. When thou didst quit the British camp, he lived.

This morn, while gazing from Le Tournelle's tower,
A ball from Orleans struck him to the ground


— Smil'st thou, that I discern what is remote?
Not to my words give credence ; but believe
The ^\•itness of thine eyes ! his funeral train
Thou shalt encounter as thou goest hence !
Now, Herald, speak, and do thine errand here.

Hp:r. If what is hidden thou canst thus reveal,

Thou know st mine errand ere I tell it thee.

JoHAN. It boots me not to know it. But do thou

Give ear unto my words ! This message bear
In answer to the lords who sent thee here.
— Monarch of England, and ye haughty dukes,
Bedford and Gloucester, regents of this realm !
To Heaven's high King ye are accountable
For all the blood that hath been shed ! Restore
The keys of all the cities ta'en by force,
In opposition to God's holy law !
The Maiden cometh from the King of Heaven
And offers you or peace, or bloody war.
Choose ye ! for this I say, that ye may know it :
To you this beauteous realm is not assign 'd
By Mary's Son ; — but God hath given it
To Charles, my lord and Dauphin, who ere long
Will enter Paris with a monarch's pomp,
Attended by the great ones of his realm.
— Now, Herald, go, and speedily depart,
For ere thou canst attain the British camp
And do thine errand, is the Maiden there,
To plant the sign of victory at Orleans.

[She retires. In the midst of a general move'
ment, the curtain falls.

Landscape, bounded by Rocks.
Scene I.
Talbot and Lionel, English Generals, Philip, Duke of
Burgundy, Fastolfe, and Chatillon, with Soldiers and
Talbot. Here let us make a halt, beneath these rocks,

And pitch our camp, in case our scatter'd troops,
Dispers'd in panic fear, again should rally.


Choose trusty sentinels, and guard the heights I
'Tis true the darkness shields us frou^. pursuit.
And sure 1 am, unless the foe have wings,
We need not fear sui'prisal. — Still 'tis well
To practise caution, for we have to do
With a bold foe, and have sustain'd defeat.

[Fastolfe goes out ivith the soldiers

Lionel Defeat ! My general, do not speak that word.
It stings me to the quick to think the French
To-day have seen the backs of Englishmen.
— 0, Orleans ! Orleans ! Grave of England's glorj'!
Our honour lies upon thy fatal plains
Defeat most ignominious and burlesque !
Who will in future years believe the tale !
The victors of Poictiers and Agincourt,
Cressy's bold heroes, routed by a woman ?

Burg. That must console us. Not by mortal power.
But by the devil, have we been o'erthrown !

Talbot. The devil of our own stupidity !

— How, Burgimdy ? Do princes quake and fear
Before the phantom which appals the vulgar ?
Credulity is but a sorry cloak
For cowardice — Your people first took flight.

Burg . None stood their ground. The flight was general

Talbot. 'Tis false ! Your wing fled first. You wildly broke
Into our camp, exclaiming : " Hell is loose,
The devil combats on the side of France !"
And thus you brought confusion 'mong our troops

Lionel. You can't deny it. Your wing yielded first.

Burg. . Because the brunt of battle there commenced.

Talbot. The Maiden knew the weakness of our camp ;
She rightly judged where fear was to be found.

Burg. . How? Shall the blame of our disaster rest
With Burgundy?

Lionel. By Heav'n ! were we alouo,

We English, never had we Orleans lost !

Burg. . No, truly ! — for ye ne'er had Orleans seen !
Who opened you a way into this realm.
And reached you forth a kind and friendly band,
When you descended on this hostile ccast ?


Who was it cro^vned your Henry at Paris,

And unto him subdued the people's hearts ?

Had this Burgundian arm not guided you

Into this realm, by Heaven ye ne'er had seen

The smoke ascending from a single hearth !
Lionel. Were conquests -ftith big words effected, Duke, J

You, doubtless, -would have conquered France alouo "

BuBG The loss of Orleans angers you, and now

You vent your gall on me, your friend and ally.

What lost us Orleans, but your avaiice ?

The city was prepared to yield to me.

Your envy was the sole impediment.
Talbot. We did not undertake the siege for you.
Burg. . How would it stand with you, if I withdrew

Willi ail my host ?
Lionel. We should not be worse off.

Than when, at Agincourt, we provd a match

For you, and all the banded power of France.
Burg. . Yet much ye stood in need of our alliance.

The regent purchased it at heavy cost.
Talbot. Most dearly, with the forfeit of onr honour,

At Orleans, have we paid for it to-day.
Burg . Urge me no further, Lords. Ye may repent it !

Did I forsake the banners of my King,

Draw down upon my head the traitor's name,

To be insulted thus by foreigners ?

Why am I here to combat against France ?

If I must needs endure ingratitude,

JiCt it come rather from my native King I
Talbot. YoL^'re in communication with the Dauphin,

We k^^ow it well, but we shall soon find means
To guard ourselves 'gainst treason.
BURGUNDY. Death and Hell!

Am I encounter'd thus? — Chatillon, hark!
Let all my troops prepare to quit the camp
We will retire into our own domain.

[Chatillon goes out
LioJiEL. God speed you there ! Never did Britain's fame
More brightly shine, than when she stood alone.
Confiding solely in her o^vn good swoi-d


Let each one fight his battle for himself,
■•or 'tis eternal truth, that English blood
Cannot, with honour, blend with blood of France.

Scene II.
The same Queen Isabel, attended by a Page.

Isabel What must I hear ? This fatal strife forbear !
What brain-be\\-ildering planet o'er your minds
Sheds dire perplexity? When unity
Alone can save you, will you part in hate,
And, waning 'mong yourselves, prepare your doom?
— I do entreat you, noble Duke, recall
Your hasty order. You, renowned Talbot,
Seek to appease an irritated friend !
Come, Lionel, aid me to reconcile
These haughty spirits, and establish peace.

Lionel. Not I, Madame. It is all one to me.

'Tis my belief, when things are misallied,
The sooner they part company the better.

Isabel. How? Do the arts of hell, which on the field
Wrought such disastrous ruin, even here
Bewilder and befool us ? Who began
This fatal quarrel ? Speak! — Lord General !
Your own advantage did you so forget.
As to offend your worthy friend and ally?
What could you do without his powerful arm ?
'Twas he who placed your Monarch on the throne.
He holds him there, and he can hurl him thence •
His army strengthens you — still more his name.
Were England all her citizens to pour
Upon our coasts, she never o'er this realm
Would gain dominion, did she stand alone ;
No ! France can only be subdued by France !

Tai30T. a faithful friend we honour as we ought ;
Discretion warns us to beware the false.

Bdro. . The liar's brazen froiit beseemeth him

Who would absolve himself from gratitude.

Isabel. How, noble Duke ? Could you so far renounce
Your princely honour, and your sense of sliame»
As clasp the hand of him who slew your sire ?
Are you so mad to entertii the thought


Of cordial reconcilement with the Dauphin,

Whom you, yourself, have hurl'd to ruin's brink?

His overthrow you have well nigh achieved,

And madly now would you renounce your work ?

Here stand your allies. Your salvation lies

Online LibraryFriedrich SchillerThe works of Frederick Schiller, translated from the German (Volume 3) → online text (page 23 of 37)