Joan of Arc - Maid of Heaven

THE MAID OF ORLEANS PLAY
by Friedrich Schiller

ACT V SCENE X.

        A CAPTAIN enters hastily.

CAPTAIN.
Haste, general! Prepare the host for battle.
The French with flying banners come this way,
Their shining weapons glitter in the vale.

JOHANNA (with enthusiasm).
My people come this way! Proud England now
Forth in the field! now boldly must you fight!

FASTOLFE.
Deluded woman, moderate your joy!
You will not see the issue of this day.

JOHANNA.
My friends will win the fight and I shall die!
The gallant heroes need my arm no more.

LIONEL.
These dastard enemies I scorn. They have
In twenty battles fled before our arms,
Ere this heroic maiden fought for them.
All the whole nation I despise, save one,
And this one they have banished. Come, Fastolfe,
We soon will give them such another day
As that of Poictiers and of Agincourt.
Do you remain with the fortress, queen,
And guard the maiden till the fight is o'er.
I leave for your protection fifty knights.

FASTOLFE.
How! general, shall we march against the foe
And leave this raging fury in our rear?

JOHANNA.
What! can a fettered woman frighten thee?

LIONEL.
Promise, Johanna, not to free thyself.

JOHANNA.
To free myself is now my only wish.

ISABEL.
Bind her with triple chains. I pledged my life
That she shall not escape.

        [She is bound with heavy chains.]

LIONEL (to JOHANNA).
                Thou will'st it so!
Thou dost compel us! still it rests with thee!
Renounce the French--the English banner bear,
And thou art free, and these rude, savage men
Who now desire thy blood shall do thy will.

FASTOLFE (urgently).
Away, away, my general!

JOHANNA.
                Spare thy words,
The French are drawing near. Defend thyself!

        [Trumpets sound, LIONEL hastens forth.]

FASTOLFE.
You know your duty, queen! if fate declares
Against us, should you see our people fly.

ISABEL (showing a dagger).
Fear not. She shall not live to see our fall.

FASTOLFE (to JOHANNA).
Thou knowest what awaits thee, now implore
A blessing on the weapons of thy people.

        [Exit.]

RETURN TO TABLE OF CONTENTS       Continue to ACT 5 SCENE 11 Maid of Orleans

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