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Act II, Scene II
The English have captured Orleans and a new day is breaking
when they decide to retreat. Talbot has avenged the death of
Salisbury by inflicting death on numerous French Soldiers.
And he decides to erect a tomb to mark the manner of
Salisburyís death. The English noblemen decide to pursue the
Dauphin and Joan of Arc after they have set things in order at
Orleans. A messenger comes with news for Talbot: the
countess of Auvergne has invited Talbot to visit her castle.
Talbot accepts her invitation and the scene ends with him
giving whispered instructions to his captain who then leaves to
do as he is bidden.
Glorious victory over Orleans has certainly been achieved but
the price the English have paid for it has been very high.
Salisbury is dead and nothing will bring him back to life. The
note of bitterness that soils this success sounds clear in Talbotís
words, "this cursed town," for which Salisbury lost his life and
the English an esteemed general. Talbotís words paint a picture
of the rage that wrecked havoc and death among the French
ranks; Talbot has absolved his honor by avenging Salisbury
death and wishes to erect a tomb that will commemorate this
There is a disparaging reference to the undignified escape of
Dauphin and Joan of Arc greatly revitalized by their victory the
English resolve to pursue them at a suitable time.
The English noblemen look upon the French countess
invitation to Talbot with amused tolerance. Talbot appears to
take the invitation at face value and accepts it. His whispered
conference with his captain appears to be totally unrelated to
what has just occurred and the scene ends with it.
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