The Prince and the Pauper

Here’s a brief passage from The Prince and the Pauper, by Mark Twain:

The King fell back upon his couch.  The attendants flew to his
assistance; but he put them aside, and said–

“Trouble me not–it is nothing but a scurvy faintness.  Raise me! There,
’tis sufficient.  Come hither, child; there, rest thy poor troubled head
upon thy father’s heart, and be at peace.  Thou’lt soon be well:  ’tis
but a passing fantasy.  Fear thou not; thou’lt soon be well.”  Then he
turned toward the company:  his gentle manner changed, and baleful
lightnings began to play from his eyes.  He said–

“List ye all!  This my son is mad; but it is not permanent.  Over-study
hath done this, and somewhat too much of confinement.  Away with his
books and teachers! see ye to it.  Pleasure him with sports, beguile him
in wholesome ways, so that his health come again.”  He raised himself
higher still, and went on with energy, “He is mad; but he is my son, and
England’s heir; and, mad or sane, still shall he reign!  And hear ye
further, and proclaim it: whoso speaketh of this his distemper worketh
against the peace and order of these realms, and shall to the gallows!
. . . Give me to drink–I burn:  this sorrow sappeth my strength. . . .
There, take away the cup. . . . Support me.  There, that is well.  Mad,
is he?  Were he a thousand times mad, yet is he Prince of Wales, and I the
King will confirm it.  This very morrow shall he be installed in his
princely dignity in due and ancient form.  Take instant order for it, my
lord Hertford.”

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