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Act 1 Scene 3

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One end of the lists at Ashby. Second day of the tournament. High seats are prepared for PRINCE JOHN and for ROWENA, who has been chosen Queen of Love and Beauty on the first day. CEDRIC is in his place in a gallery, where are other Norman knights and ladies, and few Saxons of wealth and rank. In the crowd are the FRIAR and LOCKSLEY.

Will there be no more fighting?

They are too strong, the challengers.

All have gone down before them!

Who comes here?

The Black Knight!

The Black Knight!

The Black Knight!

He won the prize of yesterday!

Hail to the Black Knight!
Hail to the great unknown!
Hail to the sable warrior!
Hail to the Black Knight!

Enter the KING disguised as the BLACK KNIGHT. He is on foot, walking down the lists, as if to go.

Whither away, Sir Sluggard? Hola!
Get thee to horse and strike the Templar's shield!
Don't steal so coward-like away. Hola!
Hola! I say, Sir Sluggard.

What bull-frog croaks so loud?

Bull-frog, quotha!
You'd find me a stout ox, if you would throw me.
Hast had too much of fighting?

Enough to satisfy a peaceful friar.

CROWD: (laughing)
Ha, ha, ha, ha!

Thou knight of courtesy,
Thy dam will warrant thee
A very peaceful knight,

Ha, ha, ha, ha!

A very peaceful knight.

I am a man of peace, tis true;
But if thou anger me, I'll come
And fright thee in thy woodland home.
I know thee, hermit,
And if I come to thee, thou need'st not fear
But I will baste, will baste thy fat sides well!

Ha, ha, ha, ha! the knight has spoken well:
The knight has spoken well, has spoken well
Ha, ha, ha, ha! To him, friar, book and bell!

And by St. Dunstan, if thou come I'll send thy long legs limping home.
Come thou my way, and heaven give light,
And I will fight thee day and night;
With any weapon I'll not fail,
From Gideon's sword to Jael's tenpenny nail.

Ha, ha, ha, ha!

Well said, old hart of grease, and fare thee well,
Till I ask lodging of thee.

Aye, lodging shalt thou have, and hermit's fare;
I love thee though I'll beat thee.

Farewell, most warlike friar!

Farewell, most peaceful knight!

Ha, ha, ha, ha!

Exit the KING. A flourish of trumpets. Enter down the lists PRINCE JOHN, DE BRACY, and gay companions; also ROWENA, as Queen of Beauty, with youths and maidens.

Lady Fair
My Lady Fair
(Edmund Blair Leighton)
Hail the lords of land and sea,
England and fair Normandy!

Fair and lovely is the may
Blushing 'neath the kiss of day;
Lovelier, fairer blooms the rose
Dreaming in the garden close;
Fairest, loveliest is the bloom
Of the golden-gloried broom.

Set the rose above the may;
Set the broom above the rose;
Where the golden beauty glows,
Glorious as the pomp of day,
High above the rose be set
Golden broom, Plantagenet!
Hail to the golden broom! Hail!


Fair and lovely is the maySet the rose above the may;
Blushing 'neath the kiss of day;Set the broom above the rose;
Lovelier, fairer bloom the roseWhere the golden
Dreaming in the garden closebeauty glows,
Fairest, loveliest is the bloomGlorious as the
Of the golden gloried bloom.pomp of day.

Lords o' the land, and Kings o' the sounding sea,
Princes of England and of Normandy!
Hail to the golden broom!
Hail the golden broom! Hail the golden broom! Hail!

ISAAC is pushing forward in the crowd. With him is REBECCA.

Prince John
Richard Green as
Prince John
Isaac, my Jew, my purse of gold,
Hail, King of Brokers! (ISAAC bends low.)
Ah! what hast thou there? A maid
More priceless than thy gold!
Shall she be crushed in the crowd?
(To CEDRIC and his party in the gallery.)
Room there, ye Saxon hinds!
Room for my King of Brokers and his child!

(starting to his feet) If he come up,
By Sigurd's sword, I'll fling him down again!

DE BRACY: (drawing the Prince aside.)
My liege! my liege!
The man is Thane of Rotherwood,
Held high among the Saxons,
And guardian of the great heiress,
The fair Rowena. I do entreat, my liege,
Press not the Jew upon them.

The Rose of Sharon, she shall choose the place
Where she may bloom most fair.
The Rose of Sharon!

Most gracious Prince,
Nearest the earth best fits our hapless race.

But fits not thee.
Such beauty may claim room amid the best.
The sweetest rose climbs high.

But Judah's rose is of the lowly vale;
She groweth best where humble flowers bloom
By lonely waters.
I entreat our Prince
To leave us lowly here.

Enter a Messenger, booted and splashed with quick travel. He kneels and presents a letter to PRINCE JOHN.

'Tis from our Royal brother, Louis of France.
"Look to thyself! The devil has broken loose!"
My brother has escaped!
Heaven grant he be not yet on English ground!
That sable knight who fought so well i' the melee?
My mind misgave me then. It cannot be!
I will not think it.
On with the sport, I say!
You Saxon sluggards here,
You're proud when seated at the show,
But by the headlong swine of Galilee
You're slow to show us sport!
Will no one meet our Norman challengers?

CEDRIC starts in his place, but his people entreat him, and PRINCE JOHN, with a mocking salutation, passes on and ascends to the seats prepared for him and his suite.

HERALDS: (four basses)
Love of ladies!
Death of champions!
On, gallant knights!
Bright eyes approve your deeds.


If ladies' love be worthy prize,Love of la-
Will ye not battle then? -ies! Death of
Look up, ye knights, look up where loving eyes champions! On, gallant knights!
Approve the deeds of men!Bright eyes approve your deeds
If ladies' love be worthy prize,Love of la-
Will ye not battle then? -ies! Death of
Look up, ye knights,
look up where loving eyes approve the deeds of men!
On, gallant knights!
Approve the deeds of men!Bright eyes approve your deeds!
Look up, look up, ye noble knights!

JOHN: (from the gallery)
Heralds, sound the challenge!

(Trumpets sound a challenge)

Again the challenge!

Enter the lists, IVANHOE on horseback, in complete steel, with visard down; on his shield an uprooted oak-sapling, with the motto, "Il Desdichado." He salutes the PRINCE by lowering the point of his spear.

What means his motto?

The disinherited!

The disinherited
The disinherited knight!

Alas, poor boy! Strike Ralph de Vipont's shield;
He is the weakest of the challengers.
De Vipont is the man for thee.

By heaven,
He has struck the shield of the Templar!
Well done, bold boy!

Exit IVANHOE up the lists.

And see, the mighty Templar
Comes from his tent in armour,
A splendid man-at-arms.
A man of men!

Now, heaven guard thee boy!

Exit BRIAN up the lists. A trumpet sounds.

The combat! The combat!
They back their horses:
And now, like thunderbolts of war,
Maddening they dash together!

O great St. Dunstan!

Neither is down!
Neither is down!
What a crash of arms!
Neither is down!
Again! again!

The trumpet sounds again.

Il Desdichado!


The Templar!Il Desdichado!
The Templar!The Templar!
The Templar!No! By heaven, the Templar's down! HERALDS:
The disinherited knight!Love of ladies!
Il Desdichado!
Il Desdichado!Death of champions
Il Desdichado!Il Desdichado! FRIAR:
The Templar leaps to his feet
and draws his sword
Lay on, lay on,LOCKSLEY:
Springs from his
On, gallant knights.horse the disinherited knight.
They are to it with their swords!
Lay on, lay on,Lay on, lay on,LOCKSLEY & FRIAR:
Lay on, lay on, like gallant knightsLay on, like gallant knightsLay on, like gallant knights
Lay on, for chivalry! Lay on, lay on, for chivalry! Lay on, lay on, for chivalry!
Lay on, lay on.Lay on, lay on, lay on.Lay on, lay on, lay on.

Enter down the lists IVANHOE and BRIAN on foot, fighting. PRINCE, who has risen in his place, throws down his baton.

Stop the combat!

A trumpet sounds, and Heralds part the combatants.

Since, by mishap, the gallant Bois Guilbert
Was first unhorsed, I hereby name this nameless knight
The victor in our list.

Il Desdichado! Il Desdichado!

And now, Sir Conqueror,
Do thou thy knightly duty!
'Tis thine to kneel before the fairest fair,
Whom yesterday we crowned our pageant's Queen
Our Queen of Love and Beauty:
And from her pride of place, thy Queen and ours
Shall crown thee with this crown.

The crown is presented to ROWENA.

Rowena! Rowena! Our Saxon princess! Hail!

Off with his helmet, Heralds!
Bareheaded must he take the crown!

In spite of protest, the herald lifts the helmet from his head.

Wilfred! Ivanhoe!My son!
My son!Wilfred Ivanhoe! Ivanhoe!
Ivanhoe!My son! My son!Ivanhoe! Ivanhoe! Hail!

Saxon heart is bold for right!Saxon heart is bold for right!
Saxon arm is strong for fight!Saxon arm is strong for fight!
Saxon heart and Saxon arm,Saxon heart and
They shall keep the land from harmSaxon arm, heart and arm,
Steadfast as the oaks that stand, They shall keep the
Wide and deep in English land,land from harm
Steadfast as the oaks that stand in English LandSteadfast as the oaks that stand in English Land

IVANHOE falls fainting.

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Page created 3 October 2003