A monologue from Act V, Scene ii

by: Francis Beaumont and John Fletcher

NOTE: The Knight of the Burning Pestle is generally considered to have been written about 1607/8. It is now a public domain work and may be performed without royalties.

RAFE: Soft and fair, gentlemen, soft and fair! Double your files! As you were! Faces about! Now, you with the sodden face, keep in there! Look to your match, sirrah; it will be in your fellow's flask anon! So; make a crescent now! Advance your pikes! Stand and give ear!--Gentlemen, countrymen, friends, and my fellow soldiers, I have brought you this day from the shops of security and the counters of content to measure out in these furious fields honor by the ell and prowess by the pound. Let it not, O, let it not, I say, be told hereafter, the noble issue of this city fainted; but bear yourselves in this fair action like men, valiant men, and free men! Fear not the face of the enemy, nor the noise of the guns, for, believe me, brethren, the rude rumbling of a brewer's car is far more terrible, of which you have a daily experience; neither let the stink of powder offend you, since a more valiant stink is nightly with you. To a resolved mind his home is everywhere. I speak not this to take away the hope of your return, for you shall see (I do not doubt it), and that very shortly, your loving wives again and your sweet children, whose care doth bear you company in baskets [1]. Remember, then, whose cause you have in hand, and, like a sort [2] of true-born scavengers, scour me this famous realm of enemies. I have no more to say but this: stand to your tacklings [3], lads, and show to the world you can as well brandish a sword or shake an apron. Saint George, and on, my hearts!

1 Lunch baskets(?)

2 Company.

3 Tackle, equipment.

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