The King's Henchman: A Play in Three Acts

The King's Henchman: A Play in Three Acts

The King's Henchman: A Play in Three Acts

The King's Henchman: A Play in Three Acts

Excerpt

It is five o'clock of a morning about the end of September. Through the thick glass of the small windows a pale daylight enters, but makes little headway in the room, which is lighted now by tall rush torches, and by a double row of candles running the length of the table. The table is laden with a variety of meats and loaves on heavy trenchers, together with cups and goblets, mostly of horn, some few of thick glass. Everything is in that disorder which attends the end of a banquet: goblets overturned, dripping mead upon the hard earth of the floor; a boar's head with little to identify it but the two strong tusks; remnants of pig and venison; bag puddings; wild-honey combs; and rinds and scraps of white and yellow cheese.

At the head of the table, on the high-backed settle, sits KING EADGAR, a dark man, short, stockily built, with a handsome head, black hair, and a black beard. He is less than twenty-five years old, but his thoughtful face, grave eyes, and dignified bearing give him the appearance of being somewhat older; he has been a king for ten years, and shows it.

On the right of EADGAR, is seated DUNSTAN, Archbishop of Canterbury, a man of forty, clean-shaven, with a pale face and bright gray eyes, wearing his house cassock, a black robe with purple at the neck.

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