The Black Adder I

The Dark Prince of Slime bumbles his way through history, shocking all of England with his devious exploits...not to mention his silly haircut!
This part is set during the really dark part of the Dark Ages and chronicles the wickedly funny exploits of the terminally treacherous Edmund, Duke of Edinborough (a.k.a. the Black Adder). The Black Adder's slimy reign of terror is the most gripping sitcom since 1380!

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Part I Episode 1: The Foretelling

From out of the swirling mists of the Dark Ages comes a lone horseman with a most ridiculous haircut. It's the ghost of Richard III, back to haunt the hapless Prince Blackadder!

Painter:  History has known many great liars.  Copernicus, Goebbels,

	  St Ralph the Liar [he is shown holding a sign which reads

	  `St Benedict the Liar'] -- but there have been none quite so

	  vile as the Tudor king Henry VII.  It was he who rewrote

	  history to portray his precessor Richard III as a deformed maniac

	  who killed his nephews in the Tower.  But the real truth is that

	  Richard was a kind and thoughtful man who cherished his young

	  wards.  In particular: Richard, Duke of York, who grew into a

	  big, strong boy.


	  Henry also claimed he won the Battle of Bosworth Field and killed

	  Richard III.  Again, the truth is very different; for it was

	  Richard, Duke of York, who became king after Bosworth Field, and

	  reigned for thirteen glorious years.


	  As for who really killed Richard III and how the defeated Henry

	  Tudor escaped with his life, all is revealed in this, the first

	  chapter of a history never before told: the history of The Black



	[opening theme]


	[The Eve of The Battle of Bosworth Field; 21st August, 1485]

	[Scene is a feast]


Richard (Duke of York):  [bangs his goblet thrice on the table]  Silence!

			 Silence!  For the king!


King (Richard III):  [stands, hunched, speaks awkwardly]

		     Now is the summer of our sweet content,

		     [Made?] [err?]-cast winter by these Tudor clouds.

		     And I that am not shaped for black-faced war,

			[the people gathered appropriately make noises to

			 the contrary]

		     I that am rudely cast and want true majesty,

			[more noises from the people; then he fixes

			 his hunched standing position by yanking on his

			 cloak, which had been stuck]

		     Am forced to fight,

		     To set sweet England free.

		     I pray to Heaven we fare well,

		     And all who fight us go to Hell.


	[cheers from everyone.  Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh, sitting at the

	 very end of the table, stands up, raising his goblet]


Edmund:  Hurray, hurray, absolutely!  Hurray!  [notices that he's the only

	 one speaking and standing; sits back down, embarrassed]


King:  [to Richard]  Who is that?


Richard:  I know not, My Lord.  I'll ask my son.  [he calls to Harry, Prince

	  of Wales, who sits on the other side of the king from Richard]

	  Harry, who is that?


Harry:  It is your other son, My Lord.


Richard:  [to King]  It is my other son, My Lord.


King:  Fights he with us on the morrow?


Richard:  [pauses, then to Harry again]  What's his name?


Harry:  [with mouth full]  Edmund.


Richard:  [turns and yells across the room to Edmund]  Edna, fight you

	  with us on the morrow?


Edmund:  Er, [stands again] oh goodness, no!  No, I thought I'd fight

	 with the enemy!  [no one laughs; he sits down embarrassed]


King:  [to Richard]  You're, er, not putting him anywhere near me, are you?


Richard:  No, no [?].  He'll be somewhere amongst the rabble.


King:  Oh! Arrow fodder!


Richard:  Precisely.


King:  Yes... [chuckles, waves to Edmund, grinning; mutters between his teeth]

       What a little turd.


	[cut to Edmund's end of the table]


Edmund:  [to Percy, Duke of Northumberland, after giving a little wave back

	 to King]  Ah, Percy, you see how the King picks me out for special



Percy:  No, My Lord...


	[a servant pokes his head in, refilling their goblets, and speaks]


Baldrick:  I saw it, My Lord.


Edmund:  Ah, and what is your name, little fellow?


Baldrick:  My name is Baldrick, My Lord.


Edmund:  Ah.  Then I shall call you...`Baldrick'!


Baldrick:  ...and I shall call you `My Lord', My Lord.


Edmund:  Mmm.  I like the cut of your jib, young fellow m'lad!

	 How would you like to be my squire in the battle to-morrow?


	[Baldrick kneels instantly]


Percy:  [trying to show off in front of Baldrick, speaks to Edmund]

	It will be a great day to-morrow for we nobles.


Edmund:  Well, not if we lose, Percy.  If we lose, I'll be chopped to pieces.

	 My arms will end up at Essex, my torso in Norfolk, and my genitalia

	 stuck up a tree somewhere in Rutland.


Baldrick:  With you at the helm, My Lord, we cannot lose.


Percy:  [still trying to show off]  Well, we could if we wanted to!


Edmund:  Ah, but we won't, Percy, and I shall prove to all that I am a man!


Percy:  But you >are< a man, My Lord.


Edmund:  But how shall it be proved, Percy...?


Percy:  Well, they could look up that tree in Rutland.  [Edmund baps him on

	the forehead]  [????], My Lord.


Edmund:  It shall be proved by mine enemies rushing to the water closet in



Baldrick:  [restrained, of course -- they're in a crowded room]  Hurray!


Percy:  Hurray!


Edmund:  Come: a toast.  Let all those who go to don armour to-morrow

	 remember to `go' before they don armour to-morrow!  Hurray!

	 [they clink goblets]  Already I can hear the sound of battle

	 ringing in my ears...


	[Cut to just before the battle, outside.  The following

	 lines are spoken to the army]


King:  Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more!

       Consign their parts most private to a Rutland tree!


Richard:  Let blood -- Blood -- BLOOD! -- be your motto!

	  Slit their gizzards!


Harry:  Now, I'm afraid there's going to have to be a certain amount of, well,

	violence.  But at least we know it's all in a good cause, don't we?


King:  And gentlemen in London still in bed shall think themselves accursed

       they were not here, and hold their manhood cheap while others speak

       of those who fought with us on Ralph the Liar's Day! [he raises his

       sword high in the air.  Our view follows it into the sky.]


	[Our view comes down from the sky, to see the castle.  Inside Edmund's

	 room, he sleeps in his bed, snoring, while Baldrick sleeps on the

	 floor, using a dead dog as a pillow.  There is a knock on the door.]


Mother:  Edmund?  [opening the door]  Edmund...


Edmund:  Hmm?  Oh, Mother, what do you want?


Mother:  Did you want to go to the battle this morning?


Edmund:  [sits up with a start; removes a cover from a sundial, and looks

	  at it]  Oh my god, it's eleven o'clock!


Mother:  [smiling unconcernedly, amusedly shakes her head, closes the door]


	[cut to long shot of a rise.  On it we see a silhouette of Edmund on

	 horseback.  Following him at a distance is Baldrick on muleback.]


Baldrick:  My Lord...


Edmund:  What is it?


Baldrick:  Where is this battle, then?


Edmund:  Oh, somewhere called Bosworth Field...


	[they have ridden off to the right of the shot.  Suddenly, we see

	 Baldrick going the other way, followed by Edmund.]


Edmund:  Damn, damn, damn!  The first decent battle since I reached puberty...


	[Now we see them close up, riding together, up a rise leading to a



Baldrick:  Here we are, My Lord...


Edmund:  Onward, Baldrick!  To glory!


	[Over the top of the rise we now can see banners clashing together.

	 Edmund stops his horse at the top.]


Edmund:  Yes, erm, I'm not so sure we're needed, you know, Baldrick...

	 I mean, everything seems to be going very well, doesn't it?

	 Everyone's fighting -- clearly having the time of their lives.

	 Wait a moment; some of them over there aren't fighting!  They're...

	 they're just lying down!


Baldrick:  They're dead, My Lord.


Edmund:  Ah.  [he wriggles in his seat]  Damn, I knew I'd forgotten something.

	 Would you excuse me a moment, Baldrick?  [he turns his horse away]


	[Just away from the battle, King on foot meets Richard on horseback]


Richard:  Your Majesty, you've lost your steed!  Take mine!


King:  No, no, no.  I've won the battle; I've saved the kingdom; I think I

       can find myself a horse!


Richard:  How true, My Noble Lord.  I'll see you back at the castle!


King:  So be it!


	[Richard rides off.  King walks along, calling...]


King:  A horse!  [whistles a call]  A horse!  My kingdom for a horse!

       [He stops as he sees a horse -- Edmund's -- tied to a tree.]

       Ah, Horsie!  [He approaches the horse.  Edmund, doing business behind

       a nearby bush, sees.]


Edmund:  [mumbling to himself]  Who is this?


	[as King bends over to untie the horse from the tree, Edmund walks up



Edmund:  [drawing his sword]  Wait! That's my horse!  [swings his sword;

	 lops King's head clean off.  He's rather surprised at his strength

	 but quickly gets a cocky feeling, and laughs a bit.]  There, that'll

	 teach you!  [He picks up the helmeted head]  You won't be doing

	 >that< again, now will you?  [He lifts the helmet's face shield,

	 then lowers the shield]


	 Oh my god.  It's Uncle Richard.


	[Edmund screams.  Baldrick runs up, having just parked his mule by

	 the tree.]


Baldrick:  What's that, My Lord?


Edmund:  Hmm?  [Frightenedly tosses the head to Baldrick.]


Baldrick:  [catches the head with a chuckle, then lifts the face shield]

	   Oh dear -- Richard III.  [half shouts]  What are you going to do?


Edmund:  Well, quick, quick... [he turns the body over, takes the head back

	 and tries to replace it, asking Baldrick to hold it in steady.  He

	 moves the corpse's arms about, and beats on its chest.  Baldrick

	 for a moment puts his face down, trying to resuscitate the body

	 through the face shield.]


Baldrick:  [points to something off-shot]  My Lord!  That hut there!


	[They each grab a leg and drag the body away.  The head stays behind.]


	[They enter a small cottage.  Baldrick is solely dragging the body

	 now.  Edmund enters afterward, carrying a gauntlet.]


Edmund:  [still entering]  Come on! Come on!  Will you wait! Will you wait!


	[Baldrick collapses exhausted on the corpse.]


Edmund:  [closing the door]  Ah, well done...  [He sits on a barrel, then

	 notices that something's missing.]  Where's the head?


Baldrick:  I thought you had it.


Edmund:  Baldrick, I can't be expected to carry everything!


	[They hear someone approaching.  Edmund cowers; Baldrick prepares to

	 strike down the intruder with some sort of blunt object.  The door

	 opens, and Percy enters.]


Edmund:  Percy, you brainless son of a prostitute!  Where have you been?


Percy:  I've just proved that I'm a man!  Look what I've found!  [He proffers

	the head.]


Edmund:  Oh, thank God.  Quick, Percy, quick -- put it down and let's get out

	 of here!


Percy:  No no no no!  I found it. It's mine!


Edmund:  What do you mean it's yours?  [He tries to take it from Percy.]


Percy:  [defensively]  I'm going to use it to prove that I killed a nobleman!


Edmund:  [stops trying to take the head]  And which nobleman, pray...?


Percy:  Er... [he looks under the face shield, laughs, then holds the head

	proudly]  Well, it's the King, actually!


Edmund:  [stares at Percy quite intently]


Percy:  [frightenedly tosses the head to Edmund]


Edmund:  [frightenedly tosses the head to Baldrick]


Baldrick:  [frightenedly tosses the head in the barrel]


	[a bloodied, armoured man approaches the cottage and staggers in just

	 as our three were about to leave]


Man:  Lost!  Lost!  All is lost!  [he collapses to the floor]


Edmund:  What?


Man:  Flee!  Flee!


Edmund:  Oh my god!  Quick -- let's get out of here!


Man:  Take me with you!  [he grabs one of Edmund legs]


Edmund:  Get your hands off!  [Percy feebly helps in this process]


Man:  If you leave me alone here, I'll die.


Edmund:  If you don't leave >me< alone, I'll kill you myself!  [Baldrick

	 bops the man on the head with his blunt object.  The man falls to

	 one side.]  Now; leave him here, come on!  [Edmund, Baldrick, and

	 Percy make their way out.]


Man:  I'll give you money!  Ten thousand sovereigns!


	[After a moment, the man collapses to the floor.  The door opens,

	 and Percy's head pokes in...]


	[cut to Edmund and Baldrick entering the great hall in the castle.

	 Baldrick keeps running, but Edmund stops as he meets his mother.]


Edmund:  [frantic]  Mother!


Mother:  Edmund, dear.  How did it go?


Edmund:  Within seconds, Henry Tudor will be here at our gates!


Mother:  Oh, but, Edmund, I'm not ready -- I haven't had a bath or anything.


Edmund:  Mother, Henry is our enemy.  When his men get here, they'll

         brutally ravish you and every woman in the castle!


Mother:  Ah, well, I shan't bother to change, then.


	[Baldrick runs into the doorway across the hall.]


Baldrick:  My Lord!


Edmund:  What do you want?


Baldrick:  Listen!


	[An army's drums can be heard faintly in the distance.]


Edmund:  Oh my god!  They're here already!  [He begins to run down the hall,

         shouting.]  Run for your lives!  Run for the hills!


Baldrick:  Er, My Lord, they're coming from the hills.


Edmund:  [still shouting]  Oh, sorry.  Run >away< from the hills!  Run away

	 from the hills!  If you see the hills, run the other way!


	[Percy arrives.]


Percy:  No, My Lord, it's all right -- they're flying the banners of our

        King Richard.


Edmund:  Well, that's impossible -- he's dead, isn't he!


Mother:  [shocked]  King Richard, dead?


Edmund:  [suddenly not so frantic]  Yes... Errr, God knows how...


Mother:  Oh, dear.  That's really upset the tulip cart.


Edmund:  [frantic again]  Those flags, Percy, are obviously just a cunning

         trick to deceive us into staying!


Baldrick:  No, My Lord, I don't think it is a cunning trick.


Edmund:  Well, no, it's not a particularly cunning trick, because we've

         seen through it!  [He locks the main entrance to the great hall.]

         But obviously they thought it was cunning when they thought it out.


Baldrick:  What I mean, My Lord, is that I don't think they did think it out.


Edmund:  What, you think someone else thought it up, and they've borrowed it

         for the occasion?


Baldrick:  No, My Lord.  I don't think it's a trick at all.


Edmund:  You don't think that riding up to a castle under someone else's

         banner is a trick?  [sarcastically]  Well, no, I suppose it isn't!


	[There's a banging on the main door.  Edmund screams and goes through

	the inner door.  The main door has been broken down.]


Percy:  [He and Baldrick remain in the great hall.]  It's only your father.


Richard:  [entering with his entourage]  Who locked that bloody door?


Mother:  Richard, it's you!


Richard:  Well, who did you expect it to be, woman?


Mother:  Why, I thought it would be Henry Tunip.


Richard:  Henry Tunip?  Have you lost your conkers?


Mother:  So you won?


Richard:  Yes, of course!  >We< won!  We won!  Victory!


	[General cheers from his entourage.]


Mother:  So, I suppose now >you< want to ravish me...


Richard:  [shocked]  Yes, yes, in a moment...  [He turns to Lord Chiswick,

	  one of his entourage.]  The woman's insatiable!  [He shouts.]

	  Three cheers for good King Richard!  Hap hap! ["Huzzah!"]  Hap hap!

	  ["Huzzah!"]  Hap hap! ["Huzzah!"]


	[Edmund appears from the opposite end he left, behind the group.]


Edmund:  [weakly]  Huzzah...


Richard:  All we need now is for King Richard to be here, and the day shall



Mother:  Yes, what a pity he's dead.


Richard:  [shocked whisper]  What?  Who told you that?


Mother:  Well, Edmund.  [nods to his direction]


Richard:  [he and the group turn to face Edmund.]  Is this true?


Edmund:  [quite intimidated, as well as fearing for his life]  Errr, well,

         I wouldn't know, really.  I was...nowhere near him at the time.

         I... I just...heard from someone that he'd, er... er... I mean,

         I don't even know where he was killed.  I was completely on the

         opposite side of the field.  I was nowhere near the cottage.


	[Everyone questions that last statement, with stares.]


Edmund:  ...not that it was a cottage -- it was a river.  But, then,

         I wouldn't know, of course, because I wasn't there.  But,

         apparently, some fool cut his head off...or at least killed him

         in some way...perhaps...took an ear off or something.  Yes, yes,

         in fact, I think he was only wounded! er, or was that somebody

         else?  Yes, I think it was.  Why, he wasn't even wounded!


	[Harry is staggering in behind Edmund, carrying the headless corpse,

         and the crown.]


Edmund:  [not noticing Harry]  Why, did someone say he was dead?


Harry:  Yes!


Richard:  What!


Harry:  It's true, My Lord!  I stumbled on his body myself!  O, pardon me,

        thou bleeding piece of earth!  [He places the body on the floor,

        and lies on top of it.]


Richard:  Er, yes...


Harry:  Good night, sweet [king? (It's not `prince')]...        \


Richard:  Yes, yes, that's enough of that, thank you, Harry...  /


Harry:  ...and flights of angels sing thee to thy [?]!              \


Richard:  Thank you, Harry... [shouts, annoyed]  Thank you, Harry!  /

          [angered whisper]  Yes! ...and we all know who did this dreadful

          deed -- [he looks at Edmund] don't we?


	[Edmund slowly nods, as a sort of confession, and closes his eyes,

         preparing to have his head cut off.]


Richard:  Henry Tudor!


	[Edmund's nod increases in speed, he opens his eyes and grins.]


Richard:  Yes! and he still roams free!  [He shouts quite loudly.]

          Harry, call for silence!


	[Everyone is silent.]


Harry:  [shouts]  Silence!  [He slowly lowers the the crown onto his father's

	head.]  ...for the King!  [Everyone, including Harry, kneels or bows

	before Richard.]


Everyone but Richard:  Long live King Richard IV!


King (previously `Richard'):  This day has been as 'twere

			      A mighty stew

			      In which the beef of victory

			      Was mix'd

			      With the vile turnip

			      Of sweet Richard slain

			      And the grisly dumpling

			      Of his killer fled.

			      But we must eat

			      The yellow wobbly parts

			      [?] two [?] serves.

			      In life, each man gets

			      What he deserves!


	[His speech over, King looks around at the kneeled assembly.]


King:  [nonchalant]  Well, come on -- let's go and kill some more prisoners.


	[His original entourage stands up excitedly.]


King:  Hap hap! ["Huzzah!"]  Hap hap! ["Huzzah!"]  Hap hap! ["Huzzah!"]


	[Cut to Edmund's room.  He, Percy and Baldrick enter, dejectedly.

	 Once they're in and the door closes, Edmund slowly turns and begins

	 begins to grin.]


Edmund:  Hurray!  [The others are excited now too.]  We're safe! and I am

         a prince of the realm!  Hap hap! [Baldrick says "Huzzah!" first,

         as Percy forgets the word.]  Can you imagine the power...


Percy:  ...and it's ours! all ours!


Edmund:  What?


Baldrick:  >Yourscould< be `Coverdale')]


Edmund:  Lord Coverdale...


Harry:  ...who fought on >our< side, I believe.


Edmund:  Er, yes... I think Lord Coverdale saw me slaying, erm...


	[Baldrick turns 90 degrees, turns his head and looks out the corner

         of his eye, then tilts his helmet over his eyes in an effeminate



Edmund:  ...Warwick.


Harry:  Warwick the Wild of Leicester?


Edmund:  Yes, that's him -- and pretty wild he was, too!  He took some

	 finishing off, I can tell you!


Harry:  Yes, indeed -- I killed him myself at one point.  Anyone else?


Edmund:  Erm...erm...let me see... Just trying to put names to faces...


Harry:  Yes, well, this is the list of the lords as yet unaccounted for:

        Roger de Runcie...


Edmund:  Oh, de Runcie, yes, he was one of mine.


Harry:  Lord Thomas of Devon...


Edmund:  Ah, yes, backslash...


Harry:  Lord Yeovil...


Edmund:  Ah, yes, groin job...


Harry:  Good lord!  This is remarkable, Edmund!  Remarkable!

        Oh, and the Bishop of Bath and Wells--


Edmund:  Ah, yes, will never walk again!


Harry:  ...will conduct the thanksgiving service.


Edmund:  Oh, Bath and >Wells<...


Harry:  [Turns to Percy.]  Ah, Lord Percy!  Edmund tells me that you managed

        to turn up late for the battle, [he begins walking out] so there's

        not much point in asking you your score, is there?  [Leaves]


	[Percy tries to speak, but can't think of anything.  He's upset.

	 He turns to face Edmund.]


Edmund:  Ha hah!!!


Baldrick:  Ha hah!!!


Percy:  [bitterly sarcastic]  Ha hah...


Edmund:  At last I can relax!  [He opens the curtain to his bed, to find the

         dying man lying in it.  He turns back to Percy and Baldrick, and

         speaks quietly.]  Who the hell is this?


Percy:  Ah, well, you remember that dying man we saw in the cottage?


Edmund:  The one I specifically told you not to bring back to the castle

         under any circumstances?


Percy:  Mm hmm, yes, that's the one, yes.


Edmund:  So what is he doing in my bed?


Percy:  Well, he claims to be a wealthy man.  I thought, if we nurse him

        back to health, he may reward us.


Edmund:  No, wait -- I think I have an idea...  If he is a wealthy man, and

         we nurse him back to health, he may reward us!


Baldrick:  Oh, brilliant, My Lord -- very quick thinking.


Edmund and Percy:  Thank you, Baldrick.  [Edmund eyes Percy angrily.]


Edmund:  Well, what would you expect?  After all, who has the fastest

         brain in the land?


Baldrick:  Prince Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh!


Edmund:  Who is the boldest horseman in the land?  [Looking at Percy.]


Baldrick:  Prince Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh!   \


Percy:  [catching on]  ...Duke of Edinburgh!   /


Edmund:  Who is the bravest swordsman in the land?


Percy:  Oh, don't tell me!  It's that [?] from Norfolk...


Edmund:  PRINCE...


Baldrick and Percy:  Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh!


Edmund:  Precisely.  [dramatically] Or, as I shall be known from now on:


         The Black...



Baldrick:  My Lord, wouldn't something like `The Black Adder' sound better?


Edmund:  No, wait -- I think I have a better idea...  What about:


         The Black...



	[Cut to scene of him choosing a new outfit.  He points to a black

	 suit with a coiled snake on it and a black cape; a pair of black

	 shoes, more suited to a jester; a black bowl for haircut style.

	 Cut to finishing of his haircut -- very short hair.  He looks in a

	 mirror, and stands up.  Camera pans down to look at his entire

	 outfit... large black rings, black tights and all.]


	[Cut to an inner hallway.  Edmund, Baldrick and Percy enter,



Baldrick:  Very witty, My Lord.


Edmund:  Ah, thank you, Baldrick.


Percy:  Very very very witty, My Lord.


Edmund:  Ah, thank you, Percy.


Baldrick:  You're certainly wittier than your father, My Lord.


Percy:  ...and head and shoulders over Richard III!


Edmund:  [Turns on Percy.]  IS THAT SUPPOSED TO BE WITTY?


Percy:  Er, no, My Lord... No, no...that...that example of the

        sort of thing that you yourself would not stoop to...


Edmund:  GO AWAY!


Baldrick and Percy:  Yes, My Lord.


	[Edmund enters his room, closing the door.  He hangs up his black

	 hat, then goes to his bed, with the man in it.  The man is awake,

	 having soup.]


Edmund:  Ah, you're still here, are you?


Man:  Er, yes.


	[Edmund looks closely at the man.  Viewers see a flashback to the

	 opening of the show.  The man is Henry Tudor.]


Edmund:  Wait a moment -- haven't I seen you somewhere before?


Henry (previously `Man'):  I don't know.  I feel I've seen you before, also.


Edmund:  Well, I am Prince Edmund, son of Richard IV!

         Why? Who are you?


Henry:  [shocked to discover where he is]  Well, erm, I'm, er, not important.


Edmund:  Not important?  You mean you're not rich?


Henry:  No.  [Knows that that would mean death.]  Yes! Yes, I'm incredibly

        rich!  I'm...I'm a very wealthy, errm, modest person, who wishes to

        remain nameless.


Edmund:  Well, you'd better be rich.  Get your money together, get better,

	 and get out of my bed, is that clear?  [He shuts the curtain.]


	[Edmund looks around, uncovers a home-made crown, puts it on and

	 looks at himself in the mirror.]


Ghost (of Richard III):  Oh yes, very fetching.


	[Edmund turns, and screams for about six seconds.]


Ghost:  ...and hello to >you<.


Edmund:  Uh, uh, er, me...I hadn't...
 see this.


Ghost:  Sitting down, you mean?


Edmund:  Er, yes, yes, that's right: sitting down.  Goodness, look!  Look!

         You're sitting down.


Ghost:  Yes.


Edmund:  Why, I haven't seen you sitting down since, er...hoo...


Ghost:  Yesterday?


Edmund:  Was it only yesterday?  Good lord!  Erm, errr...well...

         How was your battle?


Ghost:  Fine.  Somebody cut my head off at one point, but otherwise

        everything went swimmingly.  ...and how are you, Edna?


Edmund:  Er, Edmund.


Ghost:  Your father told me `Edna'.


Edmund:  No...


Ghost:  So, Edna, you loathsome little fairy maggot, how are you?


Edmund:  Er, very very kind of you to ask, erm, Your Majesty...

         I'm very well, and, er, and it's very good to see you, because,



Ghost:  Yes?


Edmund:  Well, well, well, Gosh, you look well.


Ghost:  Frankly what?  Spit it out, you horrid little scabby reptile!


Edmund:  Er, well, frankly, everyone thought you were dead.


Ghost:  Well, frankly, [his head rises from his body to be level with Edmund]

        I am.


Edmund:  Eugh!


	[There's a knock at the door.]


Ghost:  [to the door]  Do come in.


Edmund:  [rushing to the door]  No!  Don't come in!


Queen (previously `Mother'):  [From outside the door]  Why not?

			      Have you got someone in there with you?


Edmund:  Erm, not as such...


Queen:  Is it a woman?


Edmund:  No!


Queen:  Is it a man?


Edmund:  Err, [he watches the Ghost's head fly about the room]

         err, yes, yes it is.


Queen:  You hesitated, Edmund -- it's not a sheep, is it?


Edmund:  No, of course it isn't a sheep!


Queen:  Well then, let me in!


Ghost:  [body together, standing]  So, farewell, Edna!  You'll be seeing

        me later.  [The body walks off; the head remains.]


Edmund:  Erm, have, er, have you got...transport?  Erm, perhaps you'd like to

         borrow my horse again... [considers the possibility that the ghost

         doesn't know its slayer] or at all! I mean, not that you've

         borrowed it before...


Ghost:  [The body returns, gesturing for the head to follow.]

        Coming!  [Leaves]


	[Edmund opens the door.  Queen enters.]


Queen:  Are you all right, Edmund?  [Edmund quickly removes -- and hides --

	his crown.]  Why, you look as though you've just seen a ghost!


Edmund:  Er, yes?


Queen:  Hurry up, anyway -- you're expected at the banquet!


	[Henry is listening from the bed.]


Edmund:  Erm, look, er, Mother, er... You won't tell anyone about my

	 oversleeping, er, this morning and... and what have you, now

	 will you?


Queen:  Now, would I, Edmund...  Do I tell people that your brother Harry

        is scared of spoons? or that your father has very small private

        parts?  [She moves from the closet to the bed.]


Edmund:  [trying to stop her]  Oh! Mother!


Henry:  [like a sheep]  Baaaa! Baaaa!


Queen:  Oh, Edmund!  It's the lying I find so hurtful...


Edmund:  [with uneasy grin]  Baaaa...


	[Cut to banquet.  Edmund enters, and prepares to sit between his

	 father and his brother -- in Richard III's seat.]


Edmund:  So sorry I'm late...


King:  HOLD!  YOU DARE SIT THERE, BOY?  That was King Richard's seat!

       Would you insult his ghost?


Edmund:  Eugh, erm, no, no -- sorry.


	[Ghost appears in the chair, but only Edmund can see or hear it.]


Ghost:  Yes, find your own chair, you smelly little dog's pizzle!


Edmund:  Eugh!  [he goes back to the his normal spot and the end of table]


King:  [speaking across where Ghost is, to Harry]  How many prisoners have

       you got, Harry?


Ghost:  I'm not Harry -- I'm... I'm Richard.  >He's< Harry.         \


Harry:  I've still got the [?] of [?] down in the dungeons, Father. /


King:  Send the [?] to my room, will you?


Harry:  Very well.  Do you want them hung?  \


Ghost:  [waving]  Hello?                    /


King:  No -- fresh ones; I want to practice my backhand.   \


Ghost:  Hello?  Is anybody there?                          /


Harry:  Oh, I don't think you need to, the way you slaughtered Lord Snedley!


Ghost:  Hello???


King:  Oh, I wish Uncle Dicky was here.


Ghost:  Don't `Dicky' me, Ducky...


King:  [stands, bangs gold wine pitcher on table thrice, then holds up his

       goblet and speaks]  Tonight, honoured friends, we are gathered

       to celebrate a great victory, and to mourn a great loss.  [Raises his

       goblet]  A toast: to our triumph!  ["Our triumph!"]  [Ghost looks

       quite bored.]  ...and I raise a royal curse upon the man who slew

       Richard, our noble king!


Ghost:  [stands, points to Edmund]  It was him!


Edmund:  Oh my god!


King:  Quiet at the end there!  [shouts again]  Whoever it was...


Ghost:  [seated again]  It was him -- Edna!


King:  Wherever he be...


Ghost:  He's down there at the end!


King:  He shall be struck down!


Ghost:  Well then get on with it, you stupid oaf -- he's there!


Edmund:  It wasn't me!


King:  Who said that?


Ghost:  The idiot who killed me this afternoon!


Edmund:  I didn't!


King:  Well then, who did?


Harry:  It >was< actually Edmund who interrupted, Sire.


Ghost:  Hang the little slug!


	[Edmund screams and crawls under the table.]


King:  I WILL HAVE SILENCE!  [bangs pitcher on table once more.  Raises

       goblet again]  Another toast: to dead King Richard.


Ghost:  [disgustedly]  Oh my god...


King:  Gentlemen...  ["King Richard."]


Ghost:  [still disgusted]  Well, thank you, [?].  Thank you.  Thank you

        very much for nothing.  Thank you so much.  That's the last you'll

        be seeing of me...not that you've seen much of me, in any case.

        [he has faded away]


	[Edmund, still on his knees on the floor, but now out from under

         the table, wipes his brow and sighs.]


King:  Now that we have silence, we shall continue with the ceremony of

       desecration.  Produce the portrait of the pretender, Henry Tudor!


	[A man carries the portait down the room.  People hiss and make

         general noises of unpleasantness.]


Edmund:  [recognising the face as the man in his bed]  Oh my god!

         [he crawls out of the room on his hands and knees]


	[Follow Edmund down inner hallway.  From inside his room, Ghost

         opens the door.]


Ghost:  Good evening.


Edmund:  Where's Henry Tudor!  [he rushes to the bed]


Ghost:  [suddenly in the bed]  Baaaa!


Edmund:  Oh no!  Where is he?  Where is he?  [he checks the closet]


Ghost:  [suddenly inside the closet, wiggles his fingers, making spooky

         `woo!' noise]


Edmund:  [He looks out the window to see a horseman riding out of the

          castle.  He runs to the door, and it is opened by Ghost.  He

          bows to Ghost as he exits, and speaks scaredly respectively.]

          Thank you...thank you so much.


	[Edmund chases Henry on horseback out of the castle and into a meadow

	 outside.  We see Ghost snap his fingers, and the meadow suddenly is

	 foggy.  Edmund rides out of the fog, at a clearing in the woods, to

	 find three old witches bent over a cauldron.]


Witches tutti:  Oooh... Oooh... Oooh... Oooh...


Edmund:  [Having dismounted, he stands next to them, and clears his throat.]


Witches tutti:  [startled]  Oooh!


Goncril:  Hail!


Cordelia:  Hail!


Regan:  Hail!


Goncril:  Ruler of men...


Cordelia:  Ravisher of women...


Regan:  Slayer of kings!


Edmund:  Be gone, hideous crones!


Goncril:  Be not afraid...


Cordelia:  Be not overcome with fear...


Regan:  Be not paralysed with terror...


Edmund:  [bored]  Why have you lured me here, you loathsome drabs?


Regan:  We bear good news.


Edmund:  What news could such repulsive harbingers convey?


Cordelia:  To-day has brought misfortune...


Goncril:  But one day...


Witches tutti:  O, glorious day!


Cordelia:  One day...


Witches tutti:  O, happy day!




Edmund:  Yes?


Witches tutti:  You shall be king!


Edmund:  [excited]  Really?


Witches tutti:  Yes!  Your Majesty!  [they bow]


Edmund:  Well, that >is< good news, isn't it?  [mounting his horse]

         God be with you, you snaggletoothed vultures!

         History, here I come!


	[begin theme music]


		The sound of hoofbeats cross the glade

		Good folk, lock up your son and daughter

		Beware the deadly flashing blade

		Unless you want to end up shorter


		Black Adder! Black Adder!

		He rides a pitch-black steed

		Black Adder! Black Adder!

		He's very bad indeed


		Black: His gloves of finest mole

		Black: His codpiece made of metal

		His horse is blacker than a vole

		His pot is blacker than his kettle


		Black Adder! Black Adder!

		With many a cunning plan

		Black Adder! Black Adder!

		You horrid little man



	Cast in Order of Precedence


	Richard III  . . . . . . . . . . .  Peter Cook

	Richard IV   . . . . . . . . . . .  Brian Blessed

	Henry VII  . . . . . . . . . . . .  Peter Benson

	Harry, Prince of Wales   . . . . .  Robert East

	Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh  . . . .  Rowan Atkinson

	Percy, Duke of Northumberland  . .  Tim McInnerny

	The Queen  . . . . . . . . . . . .  Elspet Gray

	Painter  . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Philip Kendall

	Goncril  . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Kathleen St. John

	Regan  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Barbara Miller

	Cordelia   . . . . . . . . . . . .  Gretchen Franklin

	Baldrick   . . . . . . . . . . . .  Tony Robinson


	Written by Richard Curtis and Rowan Atkinson


	With additional dialogue by William Shakespeare


	A BBC TV Production in association with The Seven Network, Australia


	Music composed by Howard Goodall

	Graphic Designer  Steve Connelly


	Property Buyers           Penny Rollinson   Tricia Ruddell

	Visual Effects Designer   Chris Lawson


	Production Assistant      Jan Hallett

	Assistant Floor Manager   Hilary Bevan-Jones


	Film Camerman    Willian Dudman

	Film Recordist   Clive Derbyshire

	Film Editor      Mike Jackson


	Camera Supervisor   Ron Peverall

	Vision Mixer        Angela Wilson

	VT Editor           Mykola Pawluk


	Costume Designer   Odile Dicks-Mireaux

	Make-Up Designer   Deanne Turner


	Technical Manager   Terry Brett

	Lighting            Brian Clemett

	Sound               Richard Chamberlain


	Production Manager   Marcus Mortimer


	Designers   Nigel Curzon  Chris Hull


	Director   Martin Shardlow


	Producer   John Lloyd


Goncril:  He wasn't as I expected him.


Regan:  I thought he was very rude.


Goncril:  I thought Henry Tudor would be better looking.


Cordelia:  Yes -- not so Jewish.


Regan:  ...more like that man who rode by just before.


Cordelia:  Oops.


Regan:  Oops.


Goncril:  Oops.


Regan:  We've done it again...


Cordelia:  Silly witching...


Goncril:  [??????]




Back to top of Part 1

Part I Episode 2: Born to be King

An orange-faced kilt-clad Scotsman sends waves of shock through the court of England with his treachery, murder, and Scottish dancing.

Caption: In 1486, the second year of Richard IV's historic reign and also

         the year in which the egg replaced the worm as the lowest form of

         currency, King Richard departed England on a Crusade against the



King: As the good Lord said: "Love thy neighbour as thyself, unless he's

      Turkish, in which case, kill the bastard!"


Caption: He left behind him his beloved son Prince Harry to

         rule as Regent in his stead.  (Harry looks as though he doesn't

	 quite remember the line about thy neighbour in those words.)


King: Farewell, dear Harry.


Harry: Farewell, Father.


Caption: ...and his slimy son Edmund to do the tasks most befitting him.


King: Edward...  (rides off)


Baldrick: My Lord, with the King gone...


Edmund: Hmmm? Of course! At last, a chance for some real power! (laughs in

	his ridiculous-sounding evil way)


(opening credits)


**Caption: Twelve months later**


(Edmund is on horseback, with his sword raised in the air.  He shouts.)


Edmund: On! Onward! I want you scum back to the castle by sundown, or you'll

        all be slaughtered! Onward!


(sounds of `Baaa' are heard as Edmund speaks to his flock of sheep, in

 heavy snowfall)


Edmund: Come on! Come on! Keep going! I've just about had enough of you!


Sheep: Bbbbaaaaa!


Edmund: Shut up!


Sheep: Bbaaaa!  (They begin to run.)


Edmund: Come on! No, that's not the way you're going. Stop! Where are you

        going? No, not away from the castle!


Sheep: Bbbaaa!


Edmund: Shut up!



(cut to room in the castle)


Harry: (standing by the fire, reading a note)  Splendid! Splendid!


(Edmund enters the adjacent hallway)


Edmund: (to sheep) Now look, you're not supposed to be here. That's far

	enough, now get out! (shuts door, begins to walk down the hallway)

	If I could get my hands on that bastard brother, Harry...


Harry: Ah, Edmund! (Edmund stops dead in his tracks in surprise, then

       continues walking, as though not hearing, behind a bit of wall).

       Edmund? (Edmund reappears, in the next doorway) Ah, there you are.

       Splendid news, Edmund -- Father's coming home! He writes here that

       he'll be back by St. Leonard's Day. Excellent! So we can celebrate

       both events together!


(Edmund has just got to the fire, but now Harry pulls him aside, across the

 room.  Edmund tries to turn toward the fire, but to no avail.  He is frozen



Harry: Now then, I shall handle the visiting royalty, of course, er, the

       guards of honour, and the papal legate; and you can, er, you can sort

       out the frolicks.


Edmund: The frolicks?


Harry: Yes, the Morris Dancers, the eunuchs, and the bearded women -- you

       know: the traditional St. Leonard's Day entertainments. Oh damnation,

       though, I don't think I'm going to have enough time to attend to the

       drains. Edmund, you'll have to look into those as well.


Edmund: (shivering from cold)  Oh, er, yes, fine, fine. I'd, I'd be honoured.


Harry: Good. You won't let me down, now, will you?


Edmund: No, no, no, no. I'm, I'm really looking forward to it already. Thank

        you so very much.


Harry: Splendid! (exits)


(Edmund is in the room alone)


Edmund: (returning to the fire) Twelve months of chasing sheep and

	straightening the royal portraits, and now this! The bastard!



(enter Baldrick)


Baldrick: If only he were, My Lord.


Edmund: What?! (dramatic organ music begins)


Baldrick: If only he were a bastard, My Lord, then you would be Regent now.


Edmund: Ah, yes. And then, one day....


(enter Lord Percy)


Percy: You would be King, My Lord.


Edmund: Ah yes, yes. I would be King! And then what?


Baldrick: (puts his hands together, then moves them apart, making  \

	  a large globe motion) You'd rule the world, My Lord!      \


Percy: (moves an outstretched arm across a flat plane)              /

       You'd rule the world, My Lord!                              /


Edmund: Precisely! It's just not fair, you know. Every other damn woman in the

	court has bastard sons, but not my mother, oohhh no... She's so damn

	pure, she'd hate to look down in case she notices her own breasts.



(cut to hallway outside the throne room. Edmund's mother, the Queen,

 speaks to Countess Celia.)


Celia: You must be so looking forward to the King's return, Your Majesty.


Queen: (surprised at the remark) No.


Celia: No, My Lady? But think: he will come to your chamber and make mad,

       passionate love to you!


Queen: Yes, I wish he wouldn't do that. It's very difficult to sleep with that

       kind of thing going on, you know; being used all night long, like the

       outside of a sausage roll...


Celia: (??), and we've got the St. Leonard's Day celebrations to look forward

       to: the jesters, the jugglers...


Queen: The great brown ox steaming and smouldering all night long...


Celia: (excited) Oh yes -- the feast!


Queen: Sorry? No, I was thinking of something else.


Ceila: I particularly hope they've got the Morris dancers. I *love* them.


Queen: Yes. I like the eunuchs.


Celia: Oh yes, the eunuchs! Ah, I wish I owned one.


Queen: I wish I'd married one.



(cut to Edmund's quarters)


Edmund: (speaking to a woman who looks very apologetic) No, no; fine, fine;

	it could've happened to anyone. Never mind, never mind. (shuts door)

        Oh, God, I don't believe it. We've only got one act, and she

        shaved her beard off.


Percy: There's always the eunuchs, My Lord.


Edmund: Oh yes, so? The eunuchs and the Amazing Beardless Woman. What a

	(??).  Percy, there must be someone else, there must be! Look...


(they look through some papers on the desk)


Percy: Ah, there's The Jumping Jews of Jerusalem, My Lord.


Edmund: What do they do?


Percy: (as though that was a silly question) They jump, My Lord.


Edmund: What?


Percy: They come in, My Lord, and they jump ... a lot.  It's a humourous



Edmund: Nah dah dah! There must be something else, surely! Ah, what's this?

	" `The Death of the Pharoah': Sir Dominick Prique and His Magnificient

	(??) Wooferoonies perform the tragic ancient Eygptian masterpiece,

	`The Death of the Pharoah'." Well, that sounds funny.


Percy: No, no, no -- I find that very moving, My Lord.


Edmund: Well, it better be funny, or Prique will get his come-uppance, I can

        tell you.  Now, book him.


Baldrick: My Lord, what about Jerry Meriwether and His Four Chickens.


Edmund: (sarcastic) What do they do? Lay eggs?


Baldrick: Yes, My Lord.


Edmund: (desperate) Oh, all right, all right, we'll have them, we'll have them.


(There's a knock at the door. Percy opens it to find the messenger holding out

 a note.)


Messenger: My Lord...


(Percy takes the note and slams the door in the messenger's face. He gives

 the note to Edmund, who opens it, reads it, and closes it.)


Percy: Wha-- what is it, My Lord?


Edmund: (slowly, seriously) The eunuchs have cancelled.


Baldrick: Oh dear.


Edmund: Ha! I should have known -- never trust a eunuch!


Percy: What are we going to do?


Edmund: Well, I know what I'm going to do. Baldrick, give me an

        execution order. I'm gonna teach them a lesson they'll

        never forget. I'll remove whatever extraneous parts of

        their bodies still remain.


(Edmund makes out the order, and goes to the door.  Upon opening it, he

 finds the messenger still waiting for his tip, holding out his hand.)


Messenger: My Lord...


Edmund: Take that to Lord Chancellor, thank you. (Puts the order in the

	messenger's hand then slams the door) Oh God, this is desperate!



Percy: We could have the Morris dancers, My Lord.


Edmund: Now look, we are not *that* desperate! Morris dancing is the

        most fatuous (tantuate?) entertainment ever devised by man -- forty

        effeminate blacksmiths waving bits of cloth they've just wiped their

	noses on... How it's still going on in this day and age, I'll never



Percy: (confused) Sorry, so do you want them or not?


(Edmund hits Percy over the head with a scrolled paper as Harry enters.)


Harry: Ah, Edmund!


(Edmund begins jumping, hitting Percy and himself with the paper, looking

 like a Morris dance. Percy and Baldrick join in, all of them hitting each

 other on the head with bits of paper.)


Edmund: ...and rest.


Harry: (applauds) Oh, splendid! and how are the rest of the entertainments

       coming along?


Edmund: Erm, very very well indeed. Umm, I think it's going to have a

        slightly Spartan look.


Harry: What, Greek?


Edmund: Er...yes, that's right. Yes, um...Greek.


Harry: Oh good. Everyone turning up?


Edmund: Oh absolutely everyone. So many people in fact, I'm afraid I've had

	to let the eunuchs go.


Harry: Oh no no no no no no!


Edmund: No?


Harry: No! That won't do at all -- not on St. Leonard's Day, because, well

       correct me if I'm wrong, Lord Percy, but, er, St. Leonard himself

       was an eunuch.


(Edmund, behind Harry, shakes his had `No' at Percy.)


Percy: (obeys Edmund's head movement, but knows the correct answer)

       Yyyyyes, that's right.


(Harry, confused at why Percy was shaking his head, turns back to Edmund, who,

 still shaking his head, suddenly hits himself on the head with the paper, as

 though he was just dancing again.)


Edmund: Well, that's why I thought it might be more tactful if--


Harry: Oh no no no no no no no. To leave out the eunuchs on St. Leonard's

       Day would be like, well, it would be like leaving out the Morris

       dancers, or the bearded women!


(Edmund, Percy and Baldrick all pretend to laugh at the absurd thought)


Harry: Besides, Lord Dougal McAngus, the King's Supreme Commander, is

       expected at the feast, and, as you know, eunuchs are his particular



Edmund: (confused) Hmm?


Harry: He's Scottish, you see.


Edmund: Ahhhh!


Harry: Good, good. Well, I'm relying on you, Edmund. Carry on. (exits)


Edmund: So! Some carrot-faced, thistle-arsed Scottish orangutan wants

	a eunuch, does he?


Percy: Apparently he's a great warrior, My Lord...


Edmund: Yes, that's what they all say, those Scots. They're just barbarians!

        Half of them can't even speak English.


Baldrick: What do they speak?


Edmund: I don't know -- it's all Greek to me.


Percy: They speak Greek?


Edmund: No, I mean it sounds like Greek.


Percy: Well, if sounds like Greek, it probably is Greek.


Edmund: It's not Greek!


Percy: ...but it sounds like Greek. "What's not Greek but sounds like Greek?"

       That's a good one, My Lord!


Edmund: Look, it's not meant to be a brainteaser, Percy! I'm simple telling

	you that I cannot understand a blind word they're saying!


Percy: Well, no wonder, My Lord -- you never learned Greek, of course.


Edmund: (calmly) Percy, have you ever wondered what your insides look like?


Percy: Sometimes, My Lord, yes.


Edmund: (holds up a knife, shouts) Then I'd be perfectly willing to satisfy

	your curiousity! Is that clear? Is it?

        Oh my God, this Scotsman's beginning to annoy me already. I'm

        the Duke of Edinburgh, you know, and Laird of Roxburgh, Selkirk

        and Peebles. I can make things very difficult for him.

	As for these entertainments, oh, I don't know... Baldrick, you've got

	a beard -- go and get yourself a nice dress.


Baldrick: (excited) Oh, great, My Lord! (exits)


Edmund: Percy, you'd better go and get Bernard the Bear Baiter...


Percy: Yes, My Lord. (begins to leave)


Edmund: ...looks like we'll be needing him. Oh, and, Percy...


Percy: Yes, My Lord?


Edmund: Tell him to bring a bear this time. (Percy leaves; Edmund speaks to

	himself) The improvising last year was pathetic!



(in the dining room)


Harry: (stands) Now then, Mother: a toast to Father's return.


(a fanfare plays; enter a man, on horseback, wearing a horned helmet)


Harry: What the devil?! (then he realizes who it is) It's McAngus!

       (Queen is excited, too)


Queen: (???????)


(McAngus dismounts, removes his helmet, giving it to a guard, then takes

 a couple bags from his horse, and approaches the table)


McAngus: Noble Harry, Prince of Wales, Dougal McAngus greets you, and lays

	 at your feet the spoils of an enemy at war.


(he dumps the contents of a bag on the table; a severed human head)


McAngus: Oh, sorry -- that's my overnight bag.  (he dumps the other bag

	 on the table; gold Turkish goblets etc.) Behold! Treasures torn

	 from the (??) of the Turks!


Harry: Oh, McAngus! It fills me with joy and hope to see you! (they shake

       hands firmly) What news of my father, the King?


McAngus: When I last saw him, he swore he would be back for the Feast of

         St. Leonard, or die in the attempt.


Harry: God forfend! We shall pray for his safe return. Join us! Join us!

       You must be starving.


McAngus: (motions behind him) And young (Lochenbaugh?)?


Harry: (looking toward the doorway) Oh yes, and him too.


McAngus: Come on, Lochenbaugh!  (he leads his horse to the table; Queen is

	 a bit shocked. He steps over the table and sits down beside Queen,

	 where Harry had motioned for him to sit)


McAngus: (to Queen) You must be the King's wee bit of rumpy-pumpy, eh?


Queen: (confused) I am the Queen.


McAngus: Aye, aye. Listen, I got a message for you. My father asked me to send

	 his regards to you.


Queen: Do I know him?


McAngus: Oh, I think you can say that, yes -- he's Donald McAngus, Third Duke

         of Argyll. (laughs)


Queen: (very shocked) Oh...


(There is an extremely poorly played fanfare; Edmund enters, sneering at

 the trumpeter)


Harry: Ah, Edmund, there you are. McAngus, this is the man who's providing

       the entertainments for us tomorrow.


McAngus: Ah, the eunuch! (hands Edmund a coin) Here's a groat for your trouble.


Edmund: (holding back his anger, which raises the pitch of his voice)

	Agghh, I am not a eunuch.


McAngus: You sound like one to me.


Edmund: (clears his throat) I am not a eunuch. I am the Duke of Edinburgh.


McAngus: (chuckles) Oh, you are, are you?


Edmund: Yes!


McAngus: (to Queen) Same old story, eh? The Duke of Edinburgh's about

	 as Scottish as the Queen of England's tits!


(Queen is enormously shocked.)


McAngus: Sorry -- ahem, mere phrase, Your Majesty.


Edmund: I'm sorry, you're in my chair.


McAngus: Don't apologise.


(Edmund is quite inflamed; he goes down to his knees (there are no chairs



Harry: (stands, holding a large document) Well, now we've all got to know

       each other, I have rather a special announcement to make.


McAngus: Don't tell me you're a eunuch as well...!


Harry: McAngus, as reward for your heroic deeds in battle, my father here

       empowers me to grant you anything that you may desire of me.


Edmund: (sotto voce) If he's got any sense, he'll ask for a haircut.


McAngus: (stands) My Lord, I'm honoured. All I ask for is a scrap of land.

	 Grant me fair Selkirk, and the noble sire of Roxburgh.


Edmund: (stands) What?!


Harry: Very well. By the power invested in me--


Edmund: Er, excuse me... Erm, I'm sorry to dip my little fly in your ointment,

	but, er, those lands do, in fact, belong to me.


Harry: (as if to say `So?') Yes?


Edmund: Well, so, perhaps, perhaps he'd like to choose somewhere else.


Harry: McAngus?


McAngus: No, no; I'll have Roxburgh and Selkirk.


Edmund: But that leaves me with Peebles!


McAngus: Oh, aye! and Peebles.


Edmund: B-- b-- but...


Harry: Are you trying to say something, Edmund?


Edmund: Well, I don't know, I mean, some people might say, "Well! What an

	absurd idea, giving away half of Scotland to a kilted maniac for

	slaughtering a couple of syphillitic Turks!"


(McAngus reaches across the table and grabs Edmund)


Edmund: Au contraire! I say, "Let's reward him."


Harry: Good, good! So be it! (him and McAngus laugh and shake hands)


Edmund: (still being held firmly by McAngus) Hurray!



(cut to Edmund's quarters. Baldrick is in a dress and wig, twirling around

 in front of Percy, who nods; Edmund enters)


Edmund: I'm gonna kill him, and I'm gonna kill him now!


Percy: Who, My Lord?


Edmund: That stinking Scottish weasel!


Baldrick: Why, My Lord?


Edmund: Because he's a thieving stinking Scottish weasel, that's why!

	(he goes to get a knife)


Percy: How?


Edmund: I'm gonna stab him!


Baldrick: Where?


Edmund: In the Great Hall and in the bladder!

	(he begins to sharpen a knife)


Percy: But if you do it in front of everybody, won't they suspect something?


Edmund: Ah, yes -- a drawback. Yes... Perhaps we need something a little more



Baldrick: I have a cunning plan.


Edmund: Yes, perhaps, but I think I may have a more cunning one.


Baldrick: Well, mine's pretty cunning, My Lord.


Edmund: Yes, but not cunning enough, I imagine.


Baldrick: Well, that depends how cunning you mean, My Lord.


Edmund: Well, pretty damn cunning. How cunning do you think I mean?


Baldrick: Well, mine's quite cunning, My Lord.


Edmund: (fed up) Alright, then, let's hear it! Let's hear what's so damn



Baldrick: Right, well, first of all, you get him to come with you--


Edmund: Oh yes, very cunning. Brilliantly cunning. I ask

        him to come with me and then...then stab him, perhaps. How

	cunning can you get?


Baldrick: No, My Lord -- you get this enormous great cannon--


Edmund: (as though the idea is ridiculous) Oh, I see, I take him outside,

	get him to stick his head down a cannon and then blow it off.


Baldrick: (simultaneously) ...blow it off! Yeah!


Edmund: Oh, yes, Baldrick, that's (thinks about it) ...that's a wonderful

	idea.  No! I think I have a plan that will give us a little more

	*entertainment*. (laughs)


(Edmund looks out the window, and sees McAngus leave. He goes outside and

 finds a woman riding a horse, sidesaddle. He bows to her, then grabs her

 feet and pushes her off the mount. He then follows the Scotsman, who is out

 for a hunt. Edmund sneaks up behind, but gets caught in McAngus' animal



Edmund: Aaahhhhh! (now he's hanging upside-down)


McAngus: (without looking) Can I help you?


Edmund: Um, no, no. I'm fine, thank you.


McAngus: Good.


(long pause)


Edmund: I'm not in your way over here, am I?


McAngus: No.


Edmund: Oh, there is just, er, one thing. Um...I was wondering if you could

        do me a little favour.


McAngus: (finally stands up and turns to Edmund) Uh huh?


Edmund: Erm, I was wondering if you'd like to help with the celebrations



McAngus: How? By staying away, d'you mean?


(Edmund chuckles a bit, then starts to scream as McAngus raises an axe.

 McAngus chops Edmund's bindings; Edmund falls to the forest floor, and

 remains lying there, trying to look casual.)


Edmund: Erm, well, the thing is: um, we were hoping to present a

        mystery play by one of our leading Thespianic troupes, erm, but,

        unfortunately, one of their number is ill, erm, and I thought

        you'd be the perfect person to (stands) ... to take his place.


McAngus: Well, I warn you (he swipes down at the ground, killing a [badger?]):

	 I'm no actor.


Edmund: Well, there shouldn't be much acting required. (McAngus tosses the

	creature's corpse aside) Erm, it's an ancient Egyptian piece, er,

	called `The Death of the Scotsman'.


McAngus: I'll have a crack at it.  (throws a knife; a creature releases

	 a short scream before dying)


Edmund: could play the Scotsman, if you like, who...who dies

	at the end of the play.


McAngus: Oh! Acting dead! Now that I can do. (walks off)


Edmund: Yes, well, as I say: there...there may not be much acting required.

	(grins evilly to himself, then walks off a bit proudly)


McAngus: Oh, and er, mind the weasel pit.


Edmund: (falls in) Aaahhhhh!



(cut to the entertainments. The Jumping Jews are jumping, all at apparently

 different rhythms, despite the rhythmic twang of a Jew's harp. Harry and

 Queen look bored. Edmund takes a bit of cloth backstage, checks that no-one

 is looking, then replaces the fake, sliding-blade knives for the play with

 real ones, which were wrapped in the cloth he was carrying. After wrapping

 up the fake knives, he whispers to Percy, who takes the cloth-wrapped fake

 knives away. Then Edmund tests the real knives by sticking one into the

 table, but he's unable to pull it out. He turns around, hiding the real

 knife stuck in the table, as Prique and his Wooferoonies arrive, waving

 their arms in the air.)


Prique: Tall trees! Let's see those branches waving and swaying in the

	breeze. Taller, taller, taller.  Now smaller! (they all crouch down)

	Small trees, very small...


Edmund: Ah, Sir Dominick! Have you made the necessary changes?


Prique: Yes, My Lord.


(Edmund finally pulls out the knife, but his energy propels him into

 Prique and the Wooferoonies. He does conceal the knife, though, as

 McAngus enters, wearing a pharoah's headdress and carrying an Egyptian



Edmund: Ah! McAngus! Meet your murderers.


(Prique and the Wooferoonies continue their warmup -- crouching down and then

 rising while saying a slow `Woof!'  McAngus looks a bit baffled.  The

 Jumping Jews finish their act, and get very little applause.  They go

 backstage, where Prique is singing a `mi'.  One of the Wooferoonies stops

 one of the Jews.)


Wooferoonie (1 or 2?): How did it go?


Jumping Jew: Er, not bad.  (He removes his false beard to reveal his real

	     beard underneath.)  But, er, you know, I don't really think they

	     understood it.


(Prique and the Wooferoonies sheath their knives and begin the play.)


Prique: (????) with most bold intent...


Wooferoonie (1 or 2?): Here by the (?) of the graceful Nile...


Prique: Where camels ride and deserts blow...


Wooferoonie (1 or 2): To spill the blood of this Scotsman vile...


Queen: (to Harry) What is a Scotsman doing in Egypt?


Harry: I'm not sure, but apparently they've had very good reviews.




McAngus: (to Edmund) You see your mother there? I met my father on my way

	 back from France. Apparently, him and your mother used to (he bends

	 his arm with a clenched fist) way-hey-hey!


Edmund: Look, don't be absurd; such activities are totally beyond my mother.

        My father only got anywhere with her because he told her it was

	a cure for diarrhoea.


McAngus: Don't you believe it. I got some letters I took (???), and --

	 by God! -- they're hot stuff! I tell you, they certainly cast

	 a wee shadow of doubt over the patronage of young Harry for a



Edmund: Look, don't be absu--  (he realises what that would mean)


(meanwhile, on stage)


Wooferoonie (1 or 2?): Silence!


Edmund: (to McAngus backstage) What?!


Wooferoonie (1 or 2?): Listen! A bagpipe strums. Behold! This way our victim

		       comes.  For never was there a tyrant (...) \


(backstage)							    >


McAngus: Oh that's my cue! I'm on!	  			  /


Edmund: Letters? Letters? Where are these letters?


McAngus: They're safely hidden away.  I'll show you them later.  (goes on



Edmund: Oh, all right.  (realises that won't be possible)         \


(play)								    >


Wooferoonie (1 or 2): (...) the shadow of yonder mighty Fen Ness! /


Wooferoonie (the other): Tutankhamen McPerson, you come not a wait too soon;

			 for is this not the weather fair for this, the ides

			 of June?


(one of the audience shakes his head at the horrible acting and/or nonsense



McAngus: (acting really badly) Aye, it is. What business do you mean?


(backstage, Edmund is desperate. He comes up behind Percy and Baldrick, who

 watch the play through peepholes, eagerly awaiting the murder)


Edmund: Quick! Oh my God! McAngus is going to die!


Percy: And not a moment too soon!


Baldrick: Carrot-faced orangutan!


Percy: Theiving Scots weasel!


Baldrick and Percy: Death to the Scot!!!


Edmund: No, no! Look, he knows too much!


Percy: (dramatically) That is why he must die!


Edmund: No, he musn't! He musn't! He has vital information. I've changed

        my mind! I've changed my mind! Oh my God! What am I going to do?


Baldrick: Er, stop the show, My Lord.


Edmund: How? How?


Percy: Just say `Stop!'


Edmund: What's our reason? What's our reason for stopping the show?


Percy: Because the knives are real and McAngus is just about to get killed.


Edmund: Oh, you bastard!  (He picks up a knife and stabs Percy -- but it's

	one of the fake knives. He then gets an idea.)


Baldrick: Go on, My Lord! Quick!


(Edmund hurriedly fits the cloth over his head in an Egyptian fashion, and

 prances on stage just as Prique and the Wooferoonies are about to very

 dramatically stab McAngus.)


Edmund: Stop! (trying to act) Sorry I'm late.  (stabs McAngus)


(confused pause)


(Edmund stabs McAngus again)


(confused pause)


(Edmund pushes McAngus)


McAngus: Oh, aye! (falls over) Auugh!


(Harry is extremely bored. Only the man who shook his head earlier, and one

 woman, applauds, very slowly, as though it's quite an effort to applaud

 something so awful.)



(Later, McAngus shows the letters to Edmund, who laughs)


Edmund: Good, excellent! It's certainly my mother's handwriting. When did

        you say these were written?


McAngus: Er, 1460.


Edmund: The year my brother was born... (laughs) Baldrick, get in here!

	(Baldrick enters) Baldrick, get out there and tell everyone that the

	rest of the entertainments have been cancelled.


Baldrick: Why?


Edmund: `Why'? Because I told you to, you silly little rat!


Baldrick: No -- why have they been cancelled, My Lord?


Edmund: Oh, I see. Well, tell them I have a very important announcement to

	make. (laughs)


Baldrick: Does that mean I have to take the dress off?


Edmund: Oh get out, get out, get out! Out out out out!


(as Baldrick leaves, McAngus reaches between Baldrick's legs from behind)


McAngus: Y'know, if you played your cards right, you could become King.


Edmund: Ah yes, one day.


McAngus: Ah, sooner than you think, maybe. The last time I saw your father,

	 he'd just charged (?) Constantinople when they shut the gates on him.


Edmund: (excited) Oh?


McAngus: Yes. Ten thousand of the Turks were there armed with scimitars, and

	 your father with a small knife for peeling fruit.


(Edmund can barely contain himself, covering his mouth as he giggles.)


(Back at the entertainments, a man on stage shoos away his four chickens, who

 have just laid eggs.)


Harry: Jerry Meriwether... another nail in the coffin of variety.


Queen: I liked Bernard the Rabbit Baiter!


Edmund: (arriving on stage with Percy and McAngus)  Thank you, thank you.


Harry: Look, Edmund, is this announcement going to take long? I haven't seen

       hide nor hair of a eunuch yet.


Edmund: Oh, don't worry, Harry -- it will soon all be over. My dear mother,

	my dear brother, lords and ladies of the court: Today, there came

	into my possession, from the hands, My Lord, of your faithful servant,

	Dougal McAngus, certain letters -- rather extraordinary letters --

	concerning the lineage of Prince Harry.


Queen: L-- l-- letters? What is so extraordinary about them?


Harry: Letters?


Edmund: Well, Harry, they were written by your mother to your father.


(Harry chuckles, no longer worrying)


Edmund: Your father, Harry, being, of course, Donald, Third Duke of Argyll.


(Queen is extremely shocked. Baldrick puts a hand on her shoulder.)


Harry: I beg your pardon!!!


Edmund: These letters are of quite an intimate nature. Let me give you an

	example. (takes one from Percy, who mouths the words as Edmund

	reads) "Arundel; Thursday. My dear Hairy-wairy: Often when you sit

	at table with my husband, probing deeply into the affairs of state,

	I long for the day when you will probe deeply--"


(Queen is nearly fainting from shock)


Harry: Edmund! Are you sure you know what you are saying?


Edmund: As sure as our mother was, Harry, when she wrote these words:

	(takes another one from Percy, who mouths again as Edmund reads)

	"Dear Big-boy: Sail south! As you know, your galleon is always

	assured a warm welcome in *my* harbour."


Harry: "Big-boy"? Mother, do you know anything about this?


Queen: What chance did I have? I was just a little foreign girl.


Harry: Then I must renounce the Regency and hie me to a monastery.

       Edmund, you shall be Regent until ... *your* father returns.


Edmund: The King will not be returning.


Harry: WHAT?


Queen: (smiling) Oh dear.


Edmund: No, when McAngus last saw him, he was facing half the Turkish army,

        armed only with a small piece of cutlery. So, Percy, if you'd like to

	start things off...  (he goes to stand where Harry was sitting)


Percy: (standing on a table) The King is dead! Long live the King! (people

       join in) The King is dead! Long live the King!


Harry: ...*probably* dead.


(the incidental music stops suddenly; pause)


Percy & all: The King is probably dead! Long live the King! The King is

	     probably dead! Long live the King! The King is--


(King enters)


Percy & all: ...not dead! Long live the King!


(Everyone cheers. Percy gets down from the table.)


King: BLOOD! DEATH! WAR! RUMPY-PUMPY! TRIUMPH! (tosses down his lance, then

      sees McAngus)  McANGUS!!!  (they embrace)  My companion in blood, and

      most trusted friend!


McAngus: You made it!


King: I made it, thanks to my trusty fruit knife! (runs the tiny knife

      across his throat; laughs; then sees Edmund standing next to the

      Queen) Wait a minute! (climbs onto the table) What's going on here?

      (points at Edmund) Who are you?


Queen: He's our son.


King: What?! (does a bit of a double-take) Oh, yes! Of course -- Enid!


Edmund: My beloved father, certain letters have come to light which might

	change things a bit around here.


King: Letters? What letters?


Edmund: They speak of acts of love between your wife and Donald, the Gay Dog

	of the Glens. (reads) "How I long to be in that kingdom between the

	saffron sheets where you and your ruler are the only ruler."


(Queen nearly faints again)


Edmund: And then acts of love consummated, "Oh, you enormous Scotsman,"

	et cetera. And these letters are dated November and December 1460,

	which, Harry, in relation to your date of birth, is precisely nine



Harry: ...*after* I was born!


McAngus: (smiling) But about nine months before *your* birth, Edmund!




Harry: No -- I think *you're* the bastard, Edmund.


(everyone laughs)


King: Silence! I want an explanation!


Edmund: Er, My Liege, the reason I have gathered you all here today (he

	gathers the letters, and approaches McAngus) is to try to get some

	proper justice meeted out against this Scottish turd who has clearly

	forged these obviously fake letters!


King: Let me see them!


Edmund: No, I rip them up in his face so that no hint of their filthy

	slander can remain. (He has done so, and picks up a piece he dropped,

	then rushes to the fireplace and tosses them in. He then returns to

	McAngus.) You come in here, fresh from slaughtering a couple of chocos

	when their backs were turned, and you think you can upset the harmony

        of a whole kingdom? I challenge you to a duel!


McAngus: the death!!!


Edmund: (weakly) Erm... yes, alright.


King: Excellent idea! After all, it is St. Leonard's Day -- there's meant to

      be some entertainment! (laughs; climbs down to them) Good. Very good.

      Take your places.


(Edmund and McAngus go to opposite ends of the stage, Edmund clearly muttering

 a prayer. King goes to McAngus and rubs his lucky fruit knife along McAngus'



King: It is nice to see old glen (shear?) again, eh, McAngus?


McAngus: (?????????) and the human shishkebab!

	 (he thrusts his sword straight up; he and King laugh)


King: How could I ever forget! (shouts) Very well! Let the killing begin!


(Edmund draws his sword, and sillily waves it about, trying to look like

 a skilled swordsman... One of the men at the tables sighs, his eyes rolling.

 As soon as Edmund stops moving his sword, McAngus swings and slices the

 blade off.)


McAngus: Let's see the Black Adder wriggle out of this one!

	 (puts his sword to Edmund's neck)


Edmund: Er, look...


(McAngus pauses)


King: Come on! What's the hold up?


Edmund: Er, I'll give you everything I own! Everything!


McAngus: Uh huh?


Edmund: I'm, I'm hardly a rich man.


King: You're hardly a man at all! (laughs)


Edmund: But, but my horse must be worth a thousand ducats. I can sell my

	wardrobe -- the pride of my life -- my swords, my curtains, my socks,

	and my fighting cocks. My servants I can live without, except perhaps

	he who oils my rack.


(King yawns)


Edmund: And then my most intimate treasures: my collection of antique

	codpieces, my wigs for state occasions, my wigs for private

	occassions, and my wigs -- heh -- for humourous occassions; my

	collection of pokers, my (Grendel's stretchers?), my ornamental

	(pumphries?), and, of course, my autographed miniature of Judas



McAngus: (turns to the crowd and laughs) That's nowhere near enough!


(McAngus prepares to thrust; Edmund covers his face; McAngus then lowers

 his sword.)


McAngus: Och, I'm only kiddin'! (mutters to Edmund) Actually, I'm quite

	 interested in the wigs.  (shouts something ("Well done, lad"?);

	 playfully hits Edmund in the arm, then walks over to King, but

	 shouts back to Edmund, who slowly is leaving)  Hey! I hope life

	 doesn't become too dull now that you won't be able to pass laws

	 over Scotland.


Edmund: (nods, then turns and speaks sotto voce)

	I wouldn't pass water over Scotland.



(cut to room outside the throne room. King is looking out the window, bored)


Harry: We're all terribly pleased you're back, Father.


King: I'm not. I miss the smell of blood in my nostrils, and the Queen's

      "got a headache."


Harry: Oh dear. But we do have a fascinating week ahead. In fact, the

       Archbishop of York has asked me if you'd care to join his formation

       Italian dance class, and I really ought to give him an answer.


King: Do you want me to be honest or tactful?


Harry: Er, tactful, I think.


King: Tell him to get stuffed!


Harry: Ah, right.


King: Has the little hooligan McAngus left?


Harry: No, Edmund's giving him a last look round the castle now.


(cut to outside, at the top of the castle. Edmund shows McAngus the view from

 an archer's battlement, then turns away)


Edmund: ...while this... (shows McAngus a cannon)


(cut back to King and Harry)


King: Well, I'll be sorry to see him go.


(back on the roof)


McAngus: (with his head down the mouth of the cannon) Ah, very interesting.


(Edmund moves to behind the cannon)


(Back inside)


Harry: Yes, and so will Edmund -- they've become firm friends.


(a very loud sound is heard from outside)


Harry: What the devil?!


King: The Turks!


Harry: The drains!


(Edmund runs in)


Edmund: Father! Harry! There's been rather a messy accident. You must come



Harry: Oh my God! I shall need my plunger! (rushes out, follwed by King)


(Edmund jumps for joy)






***The Black Adder***


Cast in Geographical Order


The Laird of Roxburgh, Selkirk, and Peebles



Richard XII of Scotland



McAngus, Duke of Argyll



Percy, Duke of Northumberland



Gertrude, Queen of Flanders



Harry, Prince of Wales



Baldrick, Bachelor of the Parish of Ghigwell



Jumping Jew of Jerusalem



Celia, Countess of Cheltenham



Sir Dominick Prique of Stratford



2nd Wooferoonie



3rd Wooferoonie






Written by



With additional dialoge by



A BBC TV Production in association with the Seven Network, Australia




Made in Glorious Television (c) BBC MCMLXXXIII


Back to top of Part 1

Part I Episode 3: The Archbishop

The landscape is littered with dead Archbishops of Canterbury...and Edmund the Reluctant is next in line for this rather precarious position!

Caption: England, November 1487. The battle between the church and the crown

         continues to rage, and the Duke of Winchester, the greatest landowner

         in England, is dying.


(the bedchamber of the Duke; King Richard and Godfrey, the Archbishop of

 Canterbury, are with him)


Duke: Dying, my lords!  Am I dying?


Godfrey: Never...


King: Never...


Godfrey: Yet, My Son, to pass away the idle hours until your recovery--


Duke: (in pain) Euuuugh!


Godfrey: (speaks more quickly) ...let us imagine you yourself were to pass

	 away. To whom would you leave your lands?


King: Why, to me, of course...


Duke: Yes, to my beloved King.  (takes quill from King)


King: That's it...


Godfrey: ...and may your filthy soul be prepared for Hell, My Son.


Duke: Hell?


Godfrey: Yes, Hell: where Satan belches fire, and enormous devils break wind

         both night and day! Hell: where the mind is never free from the

	 torments of remorse, and your bottom never free from the pricking

	 of little forks!


Duke: NNoooo! Spare me the little forks!


King: (chuckles) What is this nonsense?


Godfrey: Hell: where the softest bits of your nether regions are everybody

	 else's favourite lunch!


Duke: (moans) Forgive me, Sire. I will change my will, and leave my lands

      to the Church.


King: WHAT???


(Duke signs his will)


Godfrey: Blessed be thy stainless soul.


King: Ah, you will change your mind later -- I know it!


(Duke moans and expires)


Godfrey: (smiling) I think not.


(King, enraged, looks around and sees one of his men standing in the room,

 wearing a helmet with a spike coming out the top)


(opening theme)


(cut to the Great Hall)


Edmund: Ah, Baldrick! What news?


Baldrick: Well, My Lord, an informed source tells me that the Duchess of

	  Glouceister has given birth to twin goblins.


Edmund: No, no, no! About the Duke of Winchester!


Baldrick: Oh, he's still hanging on.


Percy: He must be on his last legs by now, My Lord.


Edmund: Yes, but how many sets of legs has that man got? Really, I wish he'd

	make up his mind -- either he dies, or he lives forever! It's his

	shilly-shallying that's so undignified.


(enter Messenger)


Messenger: My Lord, I come with tragic news.


Edmund: What, died at last, has he?


Messenger: Who, My Lord?


Edmund: Oh, I see. Now the idea is that you ask me what the message is before

	you tell it to me! Quite brilliant, I must say. I was referring to the

	Duke of Winchester.  (puts his hands on his hips)


Messenger: (puts his hands on his hips) *Who*, My Lord?


Edmund: (noticed that Messenger has copied his gesture) Right. Let's try to

	sort this out in words of one syllable, shall we?

	(folds his arms; Messenger folds his arms)

        Someone has died, yes?


Messenger: Yes, My Lord.


Edmund: Who is it that has died? (leans forward)


Messenger: (leans forward) The Archbishop of Canterbury, My Lord.


Edmund: Are you a cretin?


Messenger: Yes, My Lord.


Edmund: (suddenly shoots up) The Archbishop of Canterbury? (Messenger nods)

	Oh no, the King has done it again! That's the third this year.

	(raising an upturned hand) How did this one die?


Messenger: (raiding an upturned hand) Horribly, My Lord.


Edmund: (raises his other hand) Any details?


Messenger: (raises his other hand) Horribly's all I was given.

	   (Edmund notices that Messenger has copied his gesture)


(enter Harry, Prince of Wales)


Harry: Ah, Edmund, there you are.


Messenger: (to Harry) My Lord, I come with tragic news.


Harry: I've heard it! (annoyed, shouts) Will you go away?


(Messenger leaves)


Harry: Oh, dear, Edmund: The Archbishop of Canterbury has met with the most

       tragic accident! There seems to be some confusion, but I think I've

       fathomed out on how it came about.


Edmund: Yes, I think I've got a pretty shrewd idea myself.


Harry: You see, Archbishop Godfrey was coming out of the Duke of Winchester's



Edmund: ...who had just died, leaving all his lands to the Church?


Harry: Well, as a matter of fact, yes.


Edmund: And so the King was really after his blood, presumably.


Harry: Well, I dare say, but the point of the matter is that, at that moment,

       round the corner, came Sir (Tabbis?) Mortimer.


Edmund: The King's hired killer...


Harry: No, no, no. Mortimer -- that tall, rather striking fellow with no ears.


Edmund: Yes, that's him.


Harry: Well, he saw the Archbishop and rushed towards him with his head bowed,

       in order to receive his blessing, and, er, unfortunately, killed him

       stone dead.


Edmund: How?


Harry: Mortimer was wearing a Turkish helmet.


Edmund: Oh, I see, yes -- one of those with the two feet spike coming out of

	the top?


Harry: It's one of those things they normally use for butting their enemies

       in the stomach and (Edmund joins in) killing them stone dead.


Edmund: (sarcastic) Yes, so, presumably he'd forgotten he was wearing it.


Harry: Well, do you know, that's exactly what the poor fellow had done!

       A tragic accident...tragic.


Edmund: Ah yes, almost as tragic as Archbishop Bertrum being struck by a

        falling gargoyle while swimming off Beachy Head.


Harry: Quite, quite. And nearly as tragic as poor old Archbishop Wilfred

       slipping and falling backwards onto the spire of Norwich Cathedral.

       Oh Lord, you do work in mysterious ways. I just don't know how I'm

       going to break it to his (catamite?). (exits)


Percy: What a tragic accident, My Lord.


Edmund: Accident, my coddlings!


(That night, Edmund, Percy and Baldrick sit before a fire)


Percy: Who do you think will take over?


Edmund: Oh, I don't know. It'll be one of the bishop fellows, I should

	imagine. They tend to go for religious types.


Baldrick: Rumour has it, My Lord, that the King wants to choose Prince Harry.


Edmund: (not paying much attention to Baldrick) Oh really?


Baldrick: (driving home the point) Prince Harry, Archbishop, My Lord...?


Edmund: Good lord! Prince Harry, Archbishop! And we all know what happens

	to Archbishops, don't we?


Percy: Yes! They go to Canterbury.


Edmund: No no no no no no no! (makes a quacking noise as he runs his finger

	across his throat)


Percy: Oh yes! (makes the same sound and gesture; he and Edmund laugh)


Edmund: Are you sure about your source, Baldrick?


Baldrick: Yeah, it was Jane Smart. You know: she was the one who told me

	  about the Duchess of Kent and the chocolate chastity belt.


Edmund: Oh yes! She's quite reliable! Well! With Harry gone (all three

	do throatcutting fingers; Edmund stands, they do too), The Black

	Adder will be...


Percy and Baldrick: King! ... next.


Edmund: Yes. Today could be one of the most important days of my life so far.

        Percy, I shall require my most splendid garments for the ceremonies.


Percy: (bows) Certainly, My Lord.  Hat, My Lord?


Edmund: Trojan, I think.


Percy: Boots, My Lord?


Edmund: The Italian.


Percy: ...and codpiece, My Lord?


Edmund: Well, let's go for the Black Russian, shall we? It always terrifies

	the clergy! (laughs ridiculously)


(at the court; Edmund has on a ridiculous metal helmet, an enormous

 protruding black codpiece, and pointed black boots with little chains

 going from the calves to the toes)


Edmund: Have you heard any more good rumours, Baldrick?


Baldrick: Not really, My Lord.  Apparently Lord (Wilders?) is keeping

	  a sheep in his bedroom -- but nothing on the appointment, no.


Edmund: Ah, fair enough.


(Edmund looks over at some clergymen and smiles.  They stare at his codpiece,

 almost in fright. The Queen arrives.)


Queen: What are you doing dressed like this, Edmund?


Edmund: Like what, sorry?


Queen: Well, this enormous nonsense here!  (baps his codpiece; walks away)


(Harry sees this and shakes his head to himself)


(a fanfare is played to announce the beginning of the appointment ceremony)


Edmund: Fingers crossed...


King: Members of the Court and, uh, Clergy: I have, at last -- after careful

      consultation with the Lord God; His Son, Jesus Christ; and His Insub-

      stantial Friend, the Holy Ghost -- decided upon the next Archbishop.

      (there is a murmuring among those gathered) May he last longer in his

      post than his predecessors.


Edmund: (to his friends) Fat chance!


King: I appoint, to the Holy See of Canterbury, my own son...


(Baldrick and Percy are very excited; Edmund points a bit toward Harry)


King: ...Edwin, Duke of Edinburgh!


(Edmund is terrified)


King: Archbishop, we salute thee.


(Everyone kneels before Edmund except Percy)


Percy: Congratulations, My Lord! (shakes Edmund hand; Edmund shakes free;

       Percy kneels)


(The clergymen, kneeling, are face-to-codpiece with Edmund. He puts his

 hands over it, but it's too large to conceal. He takes one of the clergymen's

 hats and hangs it on the codpiece. He then turns around and nearly hits

 Baldrick in the face with the codpiece.)



(Later, King and Harry are arm-wrestling in an empty room.)


King: Keep going, keep going. Use both hands! (Harry does so) Very good,

      very good... (Harry loses) Well done, well done, Harry.


(there is a knock at the door)


King: Enter!


(Edmund enters, bowing repeatedly, and continues this throughout the scene)


Edmund: Your Majesty.


King: Ah! My Lord Archbishop.


Edmund: Um, there were just a couple of points, um, about my

	appointment, um, before things really (firmed?) up.


King: Yes?


Edmund: Um, personally, could I--


King: No, you couldn't!!!


Edmund: Oh, fine. (backs up several paces) And, er, secondly--


King: Don't be mistaken about this appointment, Edward. I've always despised



Edmund: Well, you are my father, of course. I mean, you're biased.


King: You, compared to your beloved brother Harry (pats Harry on the cheek),

      are as excrement as compared to cream!


Harry: Oh, My Lord, you flatter me!


Edmund: And me also, Your Majesty.


King: So now, my boy, when I've at last found a use for you, don't try to

      get out of it!


Edmund: No no no no no! No, certainly not. I just thought that perhaps another

	man, um, equally weak-willed and feeble, might do just as well.


King: Hah! There's no such man!


Edmund: Oh, no, no, of course not. Oh silly me. Er, er, I thought, though,

	perhaps, you know, someone who believed in God...


King: No no no no no no. If I needed someone who believed in God, I'd have

      chosen Harry -- not an embarrassing little weed like you.


Edmund: Oh, well, I think that's everything cleared up. Goodness, it must

	be almost time for evensong. Must be going.


King: Egbert...


(Edmund slowly tries to pretend not to hear)


King: Come here...


(Edmund slowly continues his turn, to come to King. He bows repeatedly,

 and begins to kiss King's hand, which grabs him and pulls him up.)


King: A word of advice: if you cross me now, or ever, I shall do

      unto you what God did unto the Sodomites.


Harry: Oh, My Lord, I don't think that's a very good idea.


King: You understand?


Edmund: Well, I shall make myself available for all eventualities. Thank you

        so much. (He steps backward, bowing repeatedly, and bumps into a set

	of drawers. Then he adjusts his movements so he backs out into an open

	hallway. He turns, but leaves his head and hands poking through, still

	bowing, for a while, until he finally rounds the corner and speaks

	so himself.) Flee! (he runs down the hall)


(outside, Edmund is getting ready for his escape. He stands at the back of

 a large cart.)


Edmund: We've got the thumbscrews, the footcrusher, the nosehooks, those long

        rods you (he moves his fist as though he's holding a rod vertically)

	ram around, er...  Oh! Where's the dwarf?


Dwarf: (a cloth moves as he pushes from behind it) Here, My Lord.

       [the dwarf is in nearly every episode, sitting in a cage in Edmund's



Edmund: Oh, good. (pats the area where the dwarf is) Right, let's go, come on!


(King, Harry and a warrior round a corner)


King: Archbishop!


Edmund: (weakly, raises an arm) Hail...


King: Going somewhere?


Edmund: Umm, yes...


King: Where?


Edmund: C-- Canterbury...?


King: Good, good! Harry here will accompany you. I would hate to see you

      murdered *before* your investiture. (calls) Chiswick! Fresh horses!

      (he and the warrior leave)


Percy: (comes from around the cart) My Lord, if we're going to catch the boat

       to France, you'll have to hurry.


Harry: Um, boat to France?


Edmund: Um, you off to France, Percy?


Percy: I thought we all were.


Edmund: No, no, uh, Harry and I are off to Canterbury, aren't we, Harry?


Percy: Oh, I see -- you've changed your plan.


Edmund: No, no, not really. The only change is if you could go and put your

	face in some manure, and the keep a reasonable distance. That'll be

        fine. Harry...?


(Later, Harry and Edmund are riding on the horses.)


Harry: ...and another thing that bothers me, Your Grace: suppose my right

       hand offends me, and I cut it off, well, what if my left hand offends

       me as well? I mean, what do I cut it off with?


Edmund: Er, yes, yes, that is a knotty one...


Harry: Yes.


(They ride on ... but the horses are not pulling the cart -- it is being

 pulled by Baldrick and Percy. Percy's face is covered with manure. They

 pass by a pair of peasants. [Someone who knows the actors, please tell us

 which one is Cain and which one is Abel -- these peasants are recurring

 characters throughout the series, and it'd be nice to name them properly

 in the transcriptions (they're never named apart from in the credits).])


Peasant 1: Here; who was that?


Peasant 2: I don't know. But that tall fellow, he had a face full of manure.


Peasant 1: Now that's what I call style.


(Canterbury ... Edmund's investiture; presiding is (Herbert, the temporary

 Archbishop of Canterbury?).)


Herbert: Do you, Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh, believe in God the Father,

	 God the Son and God the Holy Ghost?


Edmund: (looks around; King mouths `yes!' to him) Um, yes.


Herbert: I then name thee Archbishop of Canterbury and Primate of all England.

	 (places hat on Edmund's head)


(Edmund sneezes as a result of the incense, and blows his nose into

 his robe. Later, he walks down the aisle, swinging the incense-thing

 far too hard, knocking over the people standing along the aisle, until

 finally it slips from his hand and flies across the church.)


Narrator: His investiture over, Archbishop Edmund the Unwilling swiftly

          adopted the ways of the cloth. But ever the shadow of his father's

          threat hung over him, until, at last, one day...


(Edmund and Baldrick are walking along outside)


Edmund: Tell me, Brother Baldrick, exactly what *did* God do to the Sodomites?


Baldrick: I don't know, My Lord, but I can't imagine it was worse than what

	  they used to do to each other.


(an armoured man delivers a scroll to Edmund. Edmund reads it)


Edmund: Oh my God, this is it! Baldrick, go and get my Lord Bishop of



Baldrick: Eh?


Edmund: Get *Percy*! Get Percy! (He sees the spikes on the man's helmet)

	My life is hanging by a thread!


(He, Percy and Baldrick set out on horseback)


Caption: The bedside of the dying Lord Graveney, attended by the Bishop of

         London, brother to the dead Archbishop.


(at Graveney's bedchamber; only William, the Bishop of London, is there

 with Graveney)


Graveney: And if I don't leave my lands to the church, then what?


William: Then, Lord Graveney, you will assuredly go to Hell.


Graveney: Alas!


William: Hell, where the air is pungent with the aroma of roasted behinds!


Graveney: No, no! (coughs) I place my lands in the hands of the Church (signs)

	  and so bid the world farewell.


King: What? The Archbishop not yet arrived?


William: Not yet, and even if he did arrive--


(Edmund rushes in)


Edmund: Wait!


William: Too late!


Edmund: Get out of my way!


King: (sword drawn) I'll kill the pair of you! Like I killed your brother!

      I'll abolish the Church!


Edmund: (to Graveney) My Lord! My Lord! Argh! I said out. Get out!


(Baldrick and Percy push William into the next room)


Edmund: (climbs on top of Graveney, and tries to restart his heart)

	Wake up! Wake up! Wake up!


Graveney: (wakes) Am I in Paradise?


Edmund: No, no, not yet.


Graveney: Then this must be Hell. Alas, spare my posterior!


Edmund: No, no, you're all right -- it's England.


Graveney: And you are not Satan?


Edmund: No, I'm the Archbishop of Canterbury.


Graveney: Your Grace, I have left all my lands to the Church. Am I to be



King: No, you treacherous swine! I'll kill you! (prepares to hack with his



Edmund: No! Wait! Wait! Let's just take this through in stages, shall we?

	(to Graveney) Erm, you know, the Church doesn't really need more



King: No -- what it needs is a damn good thrashing!


Graveney: But if I do not gain its blessing, I will surely go to Hell!


(William opens the door and pops his head in)


William: Hell, where tiny tweezers--


King: GET OUT!!


(Baldrick rushes over and closes the door on him)


Edmund: Someone like you go to Hell? Never. Never!!


Graveney: But I have committed many sins.


Edmund: Haven't we all, haven't we all...


Graveney: I murdered my father...


Edmund: (sotto voce) Well, I know how you feel.


(William opens the door again)


William: Alas!


(Baldrick, having remained by the door, shuts it again)


King: Hurry up, Egbert!


Graveney: ...and I have committed adultery...


Edmund: Well, who hasn't?


Graveney: ...more than a thousand times...


Edmund: Well, it *is* 1487!


Graveney: ...with my mother.


Edmund: WHAT?


King: Good lord...


Graveney: You see, I *will* go to Hell.


(William appears from another entrance)


William: Hell, where (??) turnips (??) the nose of the earth!


King: Kill that bishop!


(Percy grabs William; Baldrick takes a crucifix and hits him with it.)


Edmund: Well, well, let's take Hell: You know, Hell isn't as bad as it's

        cracked up to be.


Graveney: What?


Edmund: No, no, no, no. No, you see, the thing about Heaven, is

        that Heaven is for people who like the sort of things that go

        on in Heaven, like, uh, well, singing, talking to God, watering pot



Graveney: Ew...


Edmund: Whereas Hell, on the other hand, is for people who like the other

	sorts of things: adultery, pillage, torture -- those areas.


Graveney: Really?


Edmund: Mm! Give your lands to the Crown, and once you're dead, you'll

        have the time of your life!


Graveney: Adultery? Pillage? Through all eternity?


Edmund: Yep!


William: (???) large sticks against your tender portions!


(Percy beats William over the head with a large Bible; Baldrick kicks him and

 beats him with the crucifix.)


King: (handing over a quill) Lord Graveney, your decision...


Graveney: Very well. (signs) I leave my lands to the Crown, and my soul in

	  the hands of the Lord. May He treat me like the piece of refuse

	  that I am (rubs his hands together, grinning) and send me to Hell.



King: Amen.


Edmund: Amen. You're a very lucky man! I wish I could be coming with you, but,

        you know, being the Archbishop...


Graveney: I'm so sorry.


Edmund: Oh no, that's alright.


Graveney: (sits up, points) Aaahhh! (everyone looks where he points; he dies)


(Edmund and King laugh and approach each other)


King: My son!


Edmund: Father!


(they embrace for a brief period)


King: (kneels) Father.


Edmund: (places his hand on King's head) My Son.


(Two knights on horseback ride down a lane, past the peasants Cain and Abel;

 [#1] has a face full of manure now.)


Peasant 2: Who's that?


Peasant 1: Looks like the kind of pair who would kill the Archbishop of

	   Canterbury to me.


Peasant 2: Typical!


(in castle dining room; Queen is eating at one end of the long table, and

 looks up as she hears her husband's voice approach.)




(They are sword sparring. King forces Harry to the table.)




Harry: Father, it's me! Pax!!!


King: Oh, yes, of course. Sorry, Harry. You're improving.


Harry: Yes, well, thank you, Father. (turns to Queen) Good night, Mother.



King: He's gaining on me. He's gaining on me!

      (goes to the other end of the long table)


Queen: And how was Edmund?


King: Oh, well, well, very well. (picks up a piece of meat, smells it,

      then calls out)  Chiswick, fresh horse! (tosses the meat over his



Queen: And how are his dear little sheep?


King: Whose sheep?


Queen: Edmund's sheep.


(a couple of men bring in a huge platter with half a horse's body (with legs),

 cooked, on it)


King: What sheep?


Queen: Well, the ones at Canterbury -- his flock that he was talking about.


King: (he has torn off a whole leg from the horse; he rolls his eyes

      and mutters at his wife's comment) Oh my god...


(the knights ride up to the castle)


Queen: I can't understand it; Edmund doesn't even like religion.


King: (chewing into the horse leg) That's impossible -- he's the

      Archbishop of Canterbury!


Queen: Yes, and the Archbishop of Canterbury is also a naughty little boy,

       whose bottom I had to smack for relieving himself in the font.


King: (using his sword to pick take some bread from the table)

      But that was a long time ago.


Queen: It was last Thursday.


(King laughs and spits out some food. Meanwhile, the knights have ridden

 into the castle.)


King: (standing, approaches Queen) Well, the boy's turned out well.

      (as a toast) A long and healthy life to him! (He smacks his giant cup

      against the Queen's wine goblet, which breaks. He drinks.)

      I thank God that in my lifetime never again shall I have to

      say, "Who will rid me of this (turbulent?) priest?"


(the knights finally park their horses)


Queen: And what is that?


King: Oh, it's something that my ancestor Henry II once said when he having

      trouble with Thomas of Beckett. He was sitting at a table like this

      with two drunken knights, and he yelled out, "Who will rid me of this

      turbulent priest?"


(the knights now are on foot, quickly making their way inside)


Queen: Er, what?


King: (sotto voce) God save us!


(the knights finally make it to the doorway of the dining room)




(the knights look at each other)


Queen: Meaning who?


King: The Archbishop of Canterbury, of course!


(the knights look at each other again, nod, and leave)


Queen: And then what happened?


King: Well, they went straight off and killed him, of course!


(the knights leave the castle)


(cut to Edmund, Percy and Baldrick in a small room)


Edmund: Right, now let's get down to business, shall we?


Percy: Business, My Lord?


Edmund: Yes. Baldrick has been looking at some of the ways we could actually

	make a bit of money on this job.


Baldrick: Well, basically, there appear to be four major profit areas: Curses,

	  pardons, relics and selling the sexual favours of nuns.


Edmund: Selling the sexual favours of nuns?


Baldrick: Yeah.


Edmund: You mean some people will actually pay for them?


Baldrick: Well, foreign businessmen, other nuns, you know...


Edmund: Ah. Well, let's start with the pardons, shall we?


Baldrick: Right. Well, this is a fair selection. Basically, you seem to get

	  what you pay for. They run all the way from this one, which is a

	  pardon for talking with your mouth full, signed by an apprentice

	  curate in (Tukesbury?).


Edmund: Ah. How much is that?


Baldrick: Two pebbles. ...all the way up to this one, which is a pardon for

	  (reads) "anything whatsoever, including murder, adultery, or dis-

	  memberment of (Edmund reads along) a friend or relative."


Edmund: Who's that signed by?


Baldrick: Both popes. Curses are pretty much the same, really. I got this

	  one for half an egg.


Edmund: (reads) "Dear Enemy: I curse you, and hope that something slightly

	unpleasant happens to you, like an onion falling on your head."


Baldrick: Well, that is the bottom end of the market. They run all the way to

          this one, for four ducats.


Edmund: (reads) "Dear Enemy: may the Lord hate you and all your kind, may

        you be turned orange in hue, and may your head fall off at an awk-

        ward moment."


Percy: Does this work?


Baldrick: Yeah.


Percy: Really?


Baldrick: Yes!


Edmund: Really?


Baldrick: No...  (chuckles)


(the two knights approach Canterbury)


Baldrick: Moving on to relics, we've got shrouds, from Turin; er, wine from the

          wedding at Cana; splinters from the cross (his finger gets a sliver

	  from one of the splinters); er, and, of course, there's stuff made by

          Jesus in his days in the carpentry shoppe: got pipe racks, coffee

          tables, coatstands, bookends, crucifixes, a nice cheeseboard, fruit

	  bowls, waterpoof sandals... (picks up a piece of wood that's partly

	  carved) Oh, I haven't finished that one yet.


Percy: But this is disgraceful, My Lord! All of these are obviously fake!


Edmund: Hah, yes!


Percy: But, but how will people be able to tell the difference between these

       and the real relics?


Edmund: Well, they won't! That's the point!


Percy: Well, you won't be able to fool everyone! Look (he takes a red cloth

       from his sleeve): I have here a true relic.


Edmund: What is it?


Percy: (unwraps the cloth) It is a bone from the finger of Our Lord. It cost

       me 31 pieces of silver.


Edmund: Good lord. Is it real?


Percy: It is, My Lord. Baldrick, you stand amazed.


Baldrick: I am -- I thought they only came in boxes of ten. (he opens a box

	  of finger bones) (??????????)


Percy: What?!


Baldrick: Yeah, yeah -- fingers are really big at the moment. Mind you, for

	  a really quick sale, you can't beat a nose. For instance, the

	  Sacred Appendage Compendium Party Pack: you get Jesus' nose, St.

	  Peter's nose, (??) of St. Francis' nose, and (picks up a pair of

	  false breasts) er, no -- they're Joan of Arc's.


Percy: (he's been getting more and more angry and surprised as he's seen all

       these `relics') That little bastard verger! I'll show him! (exits into

       hallway) I'll show him!


(Percy opens the outer door, and finds the two knights, with swords raised.

 They rush in, but then act casual, resting their swords on their shoulders.)


George: Hello.


Justin: Hello.


Percy: Good evening. And, er, what can I do for you?


George: Well, we're here to murder the Archbishop of Canter--


Justin: --bury's enemies.


George: Er, yes.


Justin: We fear he may be in danger.


Percy: Really? How?


Justin: Well, let me see. Perhaps good King Richard, angry with the Archbishop

	for some reason...


George: Don't know why...


Justin: ...might well send two drunken knights...


(George gestures at himself and Justin)


Justin: ...freshly returned from the Crusades...


George: Crusades...


Justin: ...on a mission to wreak vengeance on him.


George: Vengeance...


Percy: That's a good point -- it has happened before.


Justin: Quite.


George: Yes indeed.


Percy: Er, I'm sorry, I didn't quite catch your names.


George: George de Boeuf.


Justin: How do you do (makes no gesture, though Percy does). Justin de Boinod.


George: (shakes Percy's hand) Two drunken knights, freshly returned from the

	Crusades, and here on mission for good King Richard. God bless the



Justin: Amen.


Percy: And your mission...?


George: Well, as I said, we're here to kill--


Justin: ...a bit of time...


George: Er, yes.


Justin: ...before our next Crusade.


Percy: Oh, right, yes. Well, I'll just go and get him.


(Percy turns his back, and the knights raise their swords ready to attack,

 but Baldrick arrives, and sees them.  They again lower their swords, and

 bow their heads.)


Percy: Ah, Baldrick...


Baldrick: Yes?


Percy: A couple of knights to see the Archbishop...


Baldrick: Oh my God! (he rushes back into the room)


Percy: (faces the knights again) (refers to Baldrick) Monks! (laughs)


(inside, Edmund is `trying on' Joan of Arc's breasts, but quickly puts them

 down when Baldrick rushes in)


Baldrick: My Lord, I've got something to say that's going to shock you.


Edmund: It's the one about the nuns from Uppingham and the candelabra,

        don't bother -- I've heard it.  (he holds a pair of noses against

	his nipples)


Baldrick: (trying to fit into a priesthole) No. The fact is: there are two

	  men outside who've come to kill you.


Edmund: WHAT??


(In the hall, Percy and George are having a laugh)


Percy: I'm terribly sorry about this. I'll just see what the delay is.


Justin: Please do.


George: (???)


(Percy enters the room; Edmund and Baldrick are frantic)


Percy: Look, what's going on?


Baldrick: (stuffing pillows under the bed sheets) Those two men have come

	  to kill us!


Percy: Oh, come on! Honestly, Baldrick! Just because a couple of people a bit

       of breeding (the knights begin chopping through the door), you assume

       they're bound to be mindless killers!


(Percy finally notices the door being cut apart)


Edmund: Oh my God! There's no way out! (they all kneel and pray by an altar-

	like place-to-play (any religious people out there care to help?))

	Oh, God! Help us! (he grabs the crucifix; it pulls down and opens

	a secret passageway)


(They run through the secret doorway, and the door closes. The knights

 finally break through the the door to the room. Justin looks around;

 George continues hacking at the door.)


Justin: Shh! (motions at the bed) They've dropped off!


(They approach the bed and hack and stab at it for a while. George moves

 the covers to see that it's only a bunch of pillows underneath.)


George: Oh, damn. They must have gone down the secret passage to the nunnery.

	(He pulls the crucifix and they both enter the passage.)


(Inside the nunnery, they find the bedroom empty apart from three nuns

 praying at another altar-thing.)


George: Little sisters of indolence, three men came in. Which way did they go?


Edmund: (covering his mouth; speaks falsetto) Oh, I think they went that way.


George: God bless you.


(They begin to walk away)


Justin: Wait! (???) They'll be watching out for us dressed like this.

	Quick! In here. (motions to one of the bed areas)


(Edmund and company begin to walk down the way, but run into the knights,

 who now also are dressed as nuns. All five giggle like girls, covering

 their mouths (particularly Justin, who has a full beard).)


Baldrick: (falsetto) Pray, Sister, have you seen two burly knights pass this



George: (falsetto) No, Sister. More's the pity, eh?


(Justin looks at George, a bit shocked)


Justin: (falsetto, to Baldrick) Why don't you try that way?


Percy: (normally) Thank you very much.


Justin: (normally) You're welcome.


(the two parties turn away, but then pause, realise who the other group was,

 draw swords and begin fighting (except Baldrick, who hasn't a sword))


(Meanwhile, elsewhere in the nunnery, the Mother Superior and Sister Sara

 are walking through the hallways)


Sara: ...and yet, Mother Superior...


(back to the fight for one second)


Sara: ...does not St. Paul say in the (???)...


(back to the fight for one second)


Sara: "A woman is like a bat...


(back to the fight for one second)


Sara: "...often heard but never seen"?


(back to the fight for one second)


Mother: No, I don't think so, Sara.


(back to the fight for one second)


Mother: Shall we check the dormitory?


Nun: Oh, yes, Mother Superior! What a good idea.


(In the dormitory, Percy is holding his own sword as well as Edmund's,

 while George just hits each sword, not making much effort to actually

 hit Percy.  Edmund knocks over Justin -- whose sword got stuck in one of

 the wooden partitions during one of the brief seconds -- and climbs on top

 of him.  Baldrick, meanwhile, has found himself on top of a real nun in one

 of the beds. The Mother Superior and Sister Sara enter.)


Mother: Girls! Girls! Girls!


(Percy and George drop the swords and jump into beds.)


Mother: If I've told you once, I've told you a thousand times: fighting

        in the dormitory is completely forbidden! Who is the ringleader here?

        (looks and points at Edmund) You! Yes, you -- the plain girl.

	(takes off headgear) Oh my God! It's the Archbishop of Canterbury!


Sara: (removing Justin's headgear) And a man! (screams)


Edmund: Er, I think I can explain. (laughs uneasily)


(Later, in the Mother Superior's office; Sara is `whipping' Edmund, but

 actually just tapping the crop against his bottom.)


Edmund: ...and that, sweet lady, is the whole story.


Mother: Let us go over the facts again. Having been appointed Archbishop,

        you found that all your interests lay in the beauty of your vestments?


Edmund: Ahh, the fine embroidery...


Mother: Unable to resist the slide into depravity, you began to dress up in

        the habit of a nun.


Edmund: I could not resist the texture of the Hessian underthings.


Mother: Ooh, I can understand that! Then, you forced the Bishop of Ramsgate

	and one Brother Baldrick to do so also.


Edmund: Oh, may I be cursed for it!


Mother: And finally, you got two knights drunk and invited them to come and

        wrestle with you inside the nunnery in an orgy of heathen perversity?


Edmund: That's it, Your Grace.


Mother: Shame (??) it has the unmistakable ring of truth to it, and I must

	therefore tell you that this morning I have written urgently to all

	three popes recommeding your immediate excommunication. Nevermore may

	you be Archbishop of Canterbury!


Edmund: (mock disappointment) Oh dear!


Mother: That's enough, Sister Sara; I think he's learnt his lesson.


Edmund: Sorry? (then realises, and feigns pain)


Mother: Go, sinner, and meet thy doom!


(Edmund exits into the corridor, with a light at the end of the hallway;

 he walks slowly toward the light, cleaning out his ear and scratching himself

 a bit as he goes. He emerges to find Percy and Baldrick.)


Edmund: Quick! The nunnery's on fire!!  (they leave in a hurry)



***The Black Adder***


Cast in Order of Reverence


Herbert, Archbishop of Canterbury



Godfrey, Archbishop of Canterbury



Percy, Bishop of Ramsgate



William, Bishop of London



Mother Superior



Sister Sara



Harry, Prince of Wales



The Queen



The Duke of Winchester



Cain, A Peasant



Abel, A Peasant






Sir Justin de Boinod



Sir George de Boeuf



Lord Graveney



Brother Baldrick



King Richard IV



Edmund, Archbishop of Canterbury



Written by Richard Curtis and Rowan Atkinson

with additional dialogue by William Shakespeare


A BBC TV production in association with The Seven Network, Australia




Mother: Alas, the corruption of the world...


Sara: Yes, alas, Mother Superior.


Mother: I'm tired and weary. You may leave me now.


Sara: Very well.


Mother: Alas...


Sara: So presumably you won't be needing the unicorn tonight.


Mother: No, not tonight, Sara.




Back to top of Part 1

Part I Episode 4: The Queen of Spain's Beard

When one of Europe's most eligible princesses is up for grabs, the scheming Edmund tries to lure her into his lascivious clutches. (???)

(On the castle ramparts at night, in darkness; two hooded figures meet)


Lady: O noble prince, your secret note of love has won my heart. The castle

      of my body is yours by right of conquest. Come, let your tongue dive

      into the moat of my mouth and let your hands take possession of the

      ramparts of my plumpies, for I'm yours (removes her cloak) and yours



Man: (taking off his hood, revealing he's Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh)

     And I'm yours!


Lady: Eugh! Edmund!  I thought you your brother! (pushes Edmund off the

      rampart; dogs are heard attacking him)


(Opening theme)


Caption: In 1492, after the death of Randolph XII of Saxony and the collapse

         of the Treaty of Insects, Europe was in disarray. Kingdoms rose and 

         fell; borders, even languages changed; men were killed by their own

         side and women raped by soldiers from up to seven different nations

         every week. 


(The King is on the floor in a room with a large map and large figures.

 Lord Chiswick is on the floor beating a drum, and two other men are

 standing, looking over a large piece of paper.)


Caption: The courts of Europe throbbed with activity, and none more so

         than England....


King: (???)


Chiswick: (stops beating the drum)  Yes, My Lord.  (begins to pick up one of

	  the human figures)


King: The Swiss are always cowards.


	(Chiswick doesn't pick up the figure, and goes back to drum-beating.)


King: (????????????)


	(Messenger 3 enters)


Messenger 3: My Lord, news: the Swiss have invaded France.


King: Excellent! (to one of the men standing) Wessex, while they're away,

      take ten thousand troops and pillage Geneva.


Chiswick: But the Swiss are our allies, My Lord.


King: Oh yes... Well, er, get them to dress up as Germans, will you?


	(Lord Wessex leaves)


King: Chiswick, remind me to send flowers to the King of France in symapthy

      for the death of his son.


Chiswick: The one you had murdered, My Lord...


King: Yes, that's the fellow.


	(enter Prince Harry)


Harry: Father--


Messenger 3: (turns to Harry) My Lord--


Harry: (shouts) Will you get away from me!!!


	(Messenger 3 runs out)


King: (laughs) Ah, Harry, the gentle art of diplomacy! But you well know

      where the real secret of diplomacy lies, don't you, my boy...


Harry: Well, actually, I don't, Father, but I would like to know.


King: (points to Harry's groin) There.


Harry: (lifts his robes) Are you sure? I can't imagine anything of any real

       interest down there.


King: Let me explain. What's that for?


Harry: Well, a couple of things...


King: Correct, and one of those things is...?


Harry: Best not mentioned, really.


King: Right! And the other is fornication!


	(Harry looks a bit surprised, as though that wasn't the one he thought

	 was mentionable.)


King: And without fornication, there is no marriage; and without marriage,

      there is no diplomacy.


Harry: Oh I see!


King: Very good. Come on, let me explain further. (takes Harry to the map on

      the floor) You see, my boy, I have decided to ally to a nation most

      threatening to France. The answer, of course, is -- Chiswick...


	(Chiswick moves one of the human figures on the map.)


King: ...Spain. And the best way to cement an alliance, of course, is

      marriage. Therefore, I have decided that you shall marry the Spanish

      Infanta! (laughs)


Chiswick: (shakes King's hand) Oh, congratulations, Your Majesty!


Harry: Actually, I don't think I can. 


King: What? Why not?


Harry: Well, I am already engaged.


King: (louder) What? Who to, boy?


Harry: Princess Leia of Hungary... and the Grand Duchess Ursula of Branden-

       burg; and Queen Beowulfa of Iceland; and, er (starts to read from a

       a list), Countess Caroline of Luxembourg; Bertha of Flanders; Bertha

       of Brussels; Bernard of Saxe-Coburg; and Jezebel of Estonia. (Confused

       about the male name in there, he checks his list) No no no, sorry,

       that should be >Bertha< of Saxe-Coburg... (looks shocked at the list)

       ...and >Jeremy< of Estonia.


King: Damn, damn, damn, damn! But if I haven't got a son to marry her, then

      the whole plan falls apart!


Chiswick: Your Majesty...


King: Yes?


Chiswick: You do have another son, My Lord.


King: What? (realises this a fact) By God, of course! You're right. The 

      slimy one -- what's his name?


Chiswick: Edmund, My Lord.


King: Yes, Osmund. Osmund can marry the Infanta!


Harry: Excellent!


King: Then with the Spanish alliance, we can massacre both the Swiss and the

      French, (`Huzzah!' from the three other men; he slashes with his sword)

      by dividing their forces into two (`Huzzah!') -- preferably their top

      halves from their bottom! (`Huzzah!')


(cut to Edmund washing off his dog bite wounds; Percy and Baldrick enter)


Percy: 'morning, My Lord. (gives Edmund's dwarf a scrap of food)


Baldrick: 'morning, My Lord.


Edmund: 'morning.


Baldrick: My God, what's happened to your neck?


Edmund: Erm, er, well, well, well, well, they're love bites, actually!


Baldrick: Look more like dog bites to me.


Edmund: Well, yes, yes, she was, erm, a bit of an animal!


Percy: Really, My Lord!


Edmund: Oh yes!


Percy: Fight to the death, eh! (they both laugh; Baldrick goes over to feed

       the dwarf)


Edmund: Oh yes. Well, as my tutor, Old Bubbleface used to say, "Make love

        and be merry, for tomorrow you may catch some disgusting skin disease."


Baldrick: Actually, I'd be prepared to swear they were dog bites.


Edmund: They are >not< dog bites! She was very attractive.


Baldrick: Yeah: shiny coat, wet nose, clear eyes...


Edmund: No, Baldrick! It was a woman!


Baldrick: Fair enough, My Lord.


Edmund: Right. Now that's sorted out. Percy, what are we up to today?


Percy: Well, My Lord, first, I thought that you and I (he and Edmund sneer at

       Baldrick, the lowly peasant) might get out a couple of prisoners, and

       actually I think Baldrick may have a point there; they do look rather

       like dog bites.


Edmund: (jumps around) Yes, yes, all right, all right! They're dog bites!

        They're dog bites! I've got bitten by a dog! A woman pushed me off

        off a rampart because she thought I was so hideously ugly, and I got

        ravaged by a raving dog! Does that satisfy you?


Baldrick: Yes, My Lord, yes!


Edmund: Good! Excellent! Good! Right! Yes, Percy, you were saying?


Percy: Right, My Lord. Well, I thought that we it wasn't a woman?


Edmund: (jumps again) No! It was a dog! It was a dog! It was a bloody great

        dog! Ar ar ar ar ar ar ar!


Percy: Right, My Lord.


Edmund: Ar!


Percy: Of course, Harry gets all the women, doesn't he?


Baldrick: Yeah.


Edmund: Shut up! I never want to hear women mentioned in my company again. 


Baldrick: What about dogs?


Edmund: ...or dog-- Shut up, Baldrick. I never want to see a woman again. If

        any woman wants to talk to me, you can warn her: The Black Adder is

        a venomous reptile, and women are his prey.


	(There is a knock at the door)


Edmund: Enter! Unless you're a woman, in which case, prepare to be thrown

        out of the window!! with your dog...


	(Messenger 3 enters.)


Messenger 3: My Lord, I bring a message.


Edmund: Yes, obviously -- you're a messenger.


Messenger 3: You are engaged to be married to the Infanta Maria of Spain.


Edmund: (puts his hands on his hips) What?


Messenger 3: (puts his hands on his hips) My Lord, I bring a message.

	     You are engaged--


Edmund: Yes, yes, yes... (waves his hand)


	(Messenger 3 waves his hand)


Edmund: Ah... (puts his hand on his neck)


	(Messenger 3 puts his hand on his neck)


Edmund: Go on, get out. (waves his other hand, then starts to push Messenger 3)


	(Messenger 3 waves his other hand, then starts to push Edmund)


Edmund: Get out! (pushes Messenger 3 with both hands)


	(Messenger 3 pushes Edmund with both hands)


Edmund: Out, out, out! (manages to close the door behind Messenger 3)

        Well, boys, did you hear that? I am to marry the Infanta of Spain.


Percy: Yes, My Lord. Shall I go and tell her?


Edmund: What?


Percy: "The Black Adder is venomous reptile--"


Edmund: No, no, no! This is no ordinary woman, Percy. This is a beautiful

        royal princess. Just imagine what the Spanish Infanta must be like.


	(Percy and Baldrick howl like dogs.)


(at the court)


Harry: (approaches Edmund, Percy and Baldrick; he is escorting a beautiful

       black-haired young woman) Ah, bienvenido a nuestro castillo. Espero

       que encuentre los desagues a sus satisfaccion.


Edmund: (enthralled by the woman's beauty; giggles a bit before coming

        to his senses) Hmm?


Harry: It's Spanish. It means "Welcome to our castle. I hope you find the

       drains to your satisfaction." Well, here you are (gives Edmund a piece

       a paper); I've jotted it down for you. It should help to break the ice

       with the Infanta.


	(Edmund looks confused)


Harry: Oh, by the way, I don't think you know the Countess Caroline

       of Luxembourg.


Edmund: (disappointed that this woman wasn't the Infanta) No. How do you do,

        young lady?


Harry: Well, good luck. (Walks away, speaking to Caroline) Er, bienvenu a

       notre chateau, Caroline. J'espere que vous trouvez......


Edmund: Luxembourg, hah!


Baldrick: My God, have you ever seen anyone so obviously seething with



Edmund: No, I haven't!


Baldrick: Seethe, seethe, seethe. If he goes on seething like that much longer,

          he'll turn into a seethe.


Edmund: Baldrick, what are you talking about?


Percy: My Lord...


Edmund: Yes, what is it?


Percy: You know, they do say that the Infanta's eyes are more beautiful than

       the famous Stone of Galveston.


Edmund: Mm! ... What?


Percy: The famous Stone of Galveston, My Lord.


Edmund: And what's that, exactly?


Percy: Well, it's a famous blue stone, and it comes (points dramatically)

       from Galveston.


Edmund: I see. And what about it?


Percy: Well, My Lord, the Infanta's eyes are bluer than it, for a start.


Edmund: I see. And have you ever seen this stone?


Percy: (nods) No, not as such, My Lord, but I know a couple of people who

       have, and they say it's very very blue indeed.


Edmund: And have these people seen the Infanta's eyes?


Percy: No, I shouldn't think so, My Lord.


Edmund: And neither have you, presumably.


Percy: No, My Lord.


Edmund: So, what you're telling me, Percy, is that something you have never

        seen is slightly less blue than something else you have never seen.


Percy: (finally begins to grasp) Yes, My Lord.


	(A fanfare is played as a rather fat woman enters, followed by a

	 tall Spaniard.)


Edmund: Percy, in the end, you are about as much use to me as an hole

	in the head...


	(Percy bows. The woman sees Edmund and is very excited. She and the

	 Spaniard approach him, while he still talks to Percy. Baldrick sees

	 her and from now on constantly tries subtly to get Edmund's



Edmund: affliction of which you must be familiar, never actually having

	had a brain.


	(The woman -- the Infanta -- is standing behind Edmund, while her

	 interpreter -- Don Speekingleesh -- is beside him.)


Don: Hello.


Edmund: (turns briefly) Hello. (turns back to Percy) Here I am awaiting the

        arrival of the most beautiful, ravishing--


Don: Hello!


Edmund: Look, leave me alone, will you, I'm trying to talk to someone.

        (to Percy) ...while you're wittering away like a pox-ridden \

	moor hen--                                                   \


Infanta: Estas el verdadero amor de mi vida, amor mio, amor mio!    /


Don: You are the true love of my life, my love, my love!


Edmund: What? (turns to Percy) Percy, is he a friend of yours?

        Someone you (???)?           \


Infanta: (???????????)!              /


Don: You are the only one for me. I merely want to hug and kiss you!


	(Edmund punches Don)


Infanta: Esto la Infanta!


Don: I am the Infanta!


Edmund: What? No-one told me you had a beard! Ha!


Percy: Must be Jeremy of Estonia!


Edmund: The very (???)


Infanta: (moves to in front of Edmund) Esto la Infanta!


Edmund: Well, absolutely...  (quintupletakes; leaps frightenedly into Percy's



Infanta: Esperara que esto momento todo mi viva! (kisses Edmund)


Don: I have waited for this moment all of my life!


Infanta: Tu nariz mas pequen~a que yo esperara.


Don: Your nose is smaller than I expected.


Edmund: I have suffered no similar disappointment.


	(Don whispers interpretations into Infanta's ear; and does so

	 throughout the rest of the episode.)


Infanta: Oh, amor mio! amor mio! (kisses Edmund)


Don: My love, my love.


	(The kiss lasts for several seconds; bringing Edmund to his feet;

	 finally he is able to push away.)


Infanta: Oh! Me gusta tu labios!


Don: Your lips I like.


	(Edmund feels his lips, as though they may have been sucked off.)


Infanta: Esto de tu cuerpo lo que me interese!


Don: It is the rest of your body I wish to find out more about!


	(Infanta licks her lips; Edmund covers his face, then peeks through

	 a couple fingers for a moment before covering again)


(cut to map room; King speaks to Lord Chiswick, who again beats on the drum)


King: ???? and (?) their gizzards. (laughs)


	(Messenger 1 arrives)


Messenger 1: My Lord, news...


King: What?


Messenger 1: The Spanish Infanta has arrived.


King: Ah, good news!


	(Messenger 1 leaves)


King: Soon we will have Spain in our grip.


	(Messenger 2 arrives)


Messenger 2: My Lord, news...


King: What?


Messenger 2: The King of France sends his greetings. 


King: Ah, good news!


	(Messenger 2 leaves)


King: My diplomacy triumphs.


	(Messenger 3 arrives)


Messenger 3: My Lord, news...


King: What?


Messenger 3: Lord Wessex is dead.


King: (raises his arms in triumph; Messenger 3 raises his arms too)

      Ah-- (lowers his arms) This news is not so good.


Messenger 3: Pardon, My Lord?


King: I like it not. Bring me some other news.


Messenger 3: Pardon, My Lord?




Messenger 3: Yes, My Lord!


	(Messenger 3 leaves; King tosses things aroung angrily;

	 Messenger 4 enters -- actually just Messenger 3 pretending to be

	 a new messenger delivering new news.)


Messenger 4: My Lord, news...


King: What?


Messenger 4: Lord Wessex is not dead.


King: Ah, good news! (lifts his arms halfway; Messenger 4 does also)

      Let there be joy and celebration; let jubilation reign!


Messenger 4: Yes, My Lord.


King: Oh yes (points at Messenger 4; Messenger 4 points at King): and tell

      Osmund that, to further strengthen ties with Spain, he marries tomorrow.


Messenger 4: Yes, My Lord. (leaves)


King: (seeing that he broke one of the horse figures in his earlier rampage,

      tosses it aside) Chiswick, fresh horses!


(in Edmund's room; Percy sits alone, holding his head as though in pain;

 Edmund and Baldrick rush in)


Edmund: Oh my God! In twenty-four hours, I'll be married to a walrus! (locks

	the door)


Baldrick: But, My Lord, you can't just lock her out, you know.


Edmund: Well, you may be right. (pulls on a rope, causing a metal gate to

	shut down in the doorway; he then holds a club with several metal

	spikes coming out) That should hold her for at least a minute!


Percy: Wait a moment, My Lord. I think I may have a plan to get you out of

       this marriage.


Edmund: Yes, but it's a stupid plan, Percy, let's face it!


Percy: (offended) Oh, well, yes, yes, maybe you're right.


Edmund: (desperate) But... tell me what it is anyway.


Percy: Er, no, actually I don't think I'll bother, My Lord.


Edmund: Oh, please, please tell me what your plan is, please tell me, please

	tell me.


Percy: (enjoying seeing Edmund grovel) All right: I go along to the Infanta's

       room and tell her that you've gone mad. She comes to the door, and you

       meet her disguised as a little pig. Then -- and this is the cunning

       bit -- instead of saying `oink oink', you say `mooooo'!


Edmund: Then...?


Percy: Well, then she'll know you're mad, and leave!


	(Edmund points up; Percy looks up; Edmund slaps Percy)


Edmund: You were right, Percy -- you shouldn't have bothered.


Baldrick: My Lord...


Edmund: What?


Baldrick: I also have a plan.


Edmund: Yes?


Baldrick: Why not make her think you prefer the company of men?


Edmund: But I do, Baldrick, I do!


Baldrick: No, no, My Lord. I mean, erm, the, er, >intimate< company of men...?


Edmund: You don't the Earle of Doncaster...?


Baldrick: I mean just like the Earle of Doncaster.


Edmund: That great radish? That steaming great left-footer? The Earle of

        Doncaster, Baldrick, has been riding side-saddle since he was



Baldrick: Mm! And who would want to marry the Earle of Doncaster?


Edmund: Well, no-one wou-- (realises) Brilliant! Of course! No-one would

        marry the Earle of Doncaster! ... except, perhaps, the Duke of

	Beaufort. Well, what are we going to do?


Baldrick: Well, first we've got to get you looking right. Just need to drape

          something effeminate round your shoulders.


Edmund: Either of the Beaufort Twins should do.


(a little later; Edmund now has some bright green fabric draped off his



Baldrick: Right, perfect. Now all you need to do is practise with Percy.


Edmund: (shocked) Practise what?


Baldrick: Presentation, My Lord!


Edmund: Oh, I see.


Baldrick: (moving Percy) You stand over here, and, My Lord, just there.

          Right; now, Percy, Lord Edmund is going to try and make himself

          attractive to you.


Percy: Attractive?


Edmund: You know, like the Earle of Doncaster.


Percy: Good lord! Well, er, fair enough. (waves seductively at Edmund)


Edmund: No, you act normal! I'm the Earle of Doncaster!


Percy: Oh, I see.


Edmund: It's me... Right.


Baldrick: Right. (holds his arm between them, rather like the referee of a

	  boxing match) Go! (stands aside)


	(Edmund makes funny faces, not seductive at all)


Edmund: Oh my God, this is impossible! I can't do this!


Baldrick: Never mind. I've a couple more things that might help. (exits)


Edmund: Percy, Percy, what am I going to do?


Percy: Well, perhaps we could try and strike up a conversation.


Edmund: Ah, right. Erm...


Percy: (in a high-pitched -- not falsetto -- voice) Hello there!


Edmund: (in his normal voice) Er, hello. How are you?


Percy: I'm fine. Have you heard? Prince Edmund's going to marry the Spanish



Edmund: No he damn well isn't!!! (attacks Percy) And anyone who (????)!

	Do you hear me?


	(Percy falls to the floor on his hands and knees. Edmund comes up

	 behind him, grabbing Percy's neck.  Baldrick enters, carrying some

	 more effeminate clothing, and sees them in this position.)


Baldrick: (smiling) Yes, that's the kind of thing!


	(Edmund quickly stands up)


(at court; Edmund now wears a lot of colourful things, including a hat and

 lipstick, and dangles a handkerchief; Percy has some sort of colourful rod,

 perhaps a riding crop, which he toys with effeminately; Baldrick dangles a



	(a fanfare is played)


Edmund: Look out, here she comes! (they strike up effeminate poses)


	(King enters)


King: (passing Edmund) 'morning, Doncaster! (turns to Lord Chiswick, giving

      him an urn) Chiswick, take this to the Queen of Naples.


Chiswick: What is it, My Lord?


King: The King of Naples.


Chiswick: Immediately, My Lord. (he and King exit)


	(a fanfare is played)


Edmund: Right. Quick, quick! (they return to their effeminate poses)


	(Prince Harry enters, escorting another beautiful young woman)


Edmund: (not wishing to appear this way in front of the beautiful woman,

	he tries to take off the hat) Oh my God!


Harry: (sees Edmund's getup) Ah, some lark for the stag party, wot?


Edmund: Erm, yes, yes, that's right.


Harry: I don't think you've met the Grand Duchess Ursula of Brandenburg.


Edmumd: (as deeply as he can) No. How do you do, Ursula?


Harry: Actually, I wanted to have a word with you about my speech at the 

       wedding feast. I thought perhaps I'd go for a fruit motif.


Edmund: (reacting to the word `fruit', tries to speak even deeper) Yes...?


Harry: Something like, er, "It is with extrawberry pleasure that we welcome

       you, er, may you be the apple of your husband's eye, and may he, in

       turn, cherries you..." -- `Cherish', you see -- "...even though it's

       an oranged marriage." (they laugh; Edmund deeply) Good, eh?


Edmund: Brilliant. Quite, quite brilliant.


Harry: Yes, I thought it was rather good. I'm hoping to squeeze in a `banana'

       by the end of the day. (walks off, talking to Ursula) Wilkommen in

       unserer Schloss, Ursula...


	(a fanfare is played)


Baldrick: OK, My Lord, this is it. (they all pose again)


Edmund: (now speaking normally) Right...


	(The Queen enters)


Edmund: (tired of all these false alarms) Oh, Mother, for Chrissakes, what

        do you want?


Queen: (shocked at his attitude) Oh! Nothing, nothing...


Edmund: (waves her and the woman she entered with aside) dit dit dit dit!


	(Queen and the woman walk off; Infanta and Don enter before their

	 fanfare is finished, before Edmund and company have a chance to

	 get into their poses; she sees Edmund and starts to cry)


Edmund: It's working... It's working...


Infanta: Oh, te abrazo y te amo totalmente!


Don: Oh, I embrace and love you utterly!


Edmund: What?


Infanta: Que el amor ese este que tu a disfrazas como un espan~ol para

         complacer mi! (she hugs and kisses Edmund)


Don: Oh, what a love this must be that you dress as a Spanish man to 

     delight me!


Edmund: (upset) Oh, Baldrick!


Infanta: Que amor, que amor, que amor!


Don: What love, what love, what love.


Edmund: Baldrick, you fool!


Queen: (to the woman she came in with) Look at the two lovebirds!


Edmund: One lovebird and one love-elephant!


Queen: It's almost as if they were married already.


Edmund: (while being smothered by Infanta) What did you say?


Queen: It's almost as if you were married already!


Edmund: That's what I thought you said! (he struggles) Boys...


Baldrick & Percy: Yes, My Lord.  (they try to free him from Infanta)


Edmund: I think I have another plan.


(in a corridor, Baldrick knocks a monk -- Rev. Lloyd -- unconscious;

 Edmund runs down a field where a man is on one knee, giving a bundle of

 flowers to a woman; Edmund, still in his `effeminate' dress, runs between

 them, ending up with the flowers; Percy chats with a woman -- Tally -- in a

 small cottage; she smiles surprised and giggles when she hears what he says.

 Later, in the cottage, Lloyd is setting up a makeshift altar; Tally still

 is giggling.)


Edmund: Percy, is she the best you could do? I mean, I am marrying the woman!


Percy: Yes, I know, but it's only for a couple of days, isn't it...


Edmund: Ah yes, that's true. Come on, hurry up, Father!


Lloyd: Er, yes, very well. Er, we are gathered here, O gracious Lord, to

       bear witness, at very short notice...


	(Tally laughs)


Lloyd: the marriage of these two God-fearing Christians: er, Edmund,

       Duke of Edinburgh, and, er, Tally Applebottom.


	(Tally laughs)


Lloyd: Is that right?


Tally: Yes, that's right. Whoever would have thought it? The Duke of

       Edinburgh, consumed with passion, whisks away little Tally! (laughs)


Edmund: Shut up!!! Come on, get on with it, Father, will you?


Lloyd: Yes, very well. Are you Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh?


Edmund: No, I'm a bowl of soup!


	(Tally laughs)


Edmund: Come on, hurry up, hurry up, hurry up...


Lloyd: And are you Miss Tally Applebottom?


Tally: Mrs.


Lloyd: Er, Mrs. ... (realises) Ah...


Edmund: Ah... (looks at Percy)


Percy: Ah...


Edmund: (stammers a bit) Well, never mind, get on with it, Father, come on!


Lloyd: Yes, but surely if she's--


Edmund: Look, the Church is never going to progress if it isn't just a bit



Lloyd: But this is most unusual!


	(Baldrick holds a knife to Lloyd's throat)


Lloyd: Well, mind you, hasn't the Church always dealt with the unusual? The

       miracle with the fishes, for example. We'll continue. (he puts a hand

       behind his back, fingers crossed) So, no-one knows any cause or just

       impediment why these persons may not joined together in holy matimony.


Edmund: No.


Baldrick: No.


Percy: No.


Tally: No.


Lloyd: No.


	(A man -- Thomas -- enters, carrying a scythe)


Thomas: Yes!


Lloyd: Ah... (a bit confused at what's supposed to happen when someone says

       yes) And, er, you are...?


Thomas: Mr. Applebottom.


Lloyd: Then you are the father of the bride...


Thomas: No, I'm the >husband< of the...`bride'.


Tally: Oh, this is my husband, Thomas. Thomas, this is my fiance, the Duke 

       of Edinburgh. Prince Edmund, this is Thomas. Thomas, this is Father O'--


Lloyd: ...Smith! I called about the ducking-stool you found. (He quickly

       begins to gather up his things)


Edmund: (he backs round and round as Thomas approaches him; Percy and Baldrick

        hide behind him) Mr. Applebottom, I was just wondering whether I could

        possibly have a temporary arrangement with your good lady. I only need

        her for a very short stint...


Thomas: Get out!!!


Edmund: Look, you stupid peasant, all I want to do is marry your wife!


Thomas: Get out of here!!!


	(Baldrick, Percy and Edmund leave)


Tally: (shocked at her husband's behaviour) That was the Duke of Edinburgh,

       you know!


Thomas: No -- that'll be the Earle of Doncaster...


(outside the throne room; Infanta, Don and Queen sit on a bench)


Infanta: Ah, esto estas bien. 


Don: Well, this is nice.


Queen: Oh, yes.


Infanta: (Hablierto?) poco de cosas de mujeres.


Don: have a little talk about a lady's things.


Infanta: Si' -- los dos solas.


Don: Just the two of us.


Queen: Oh, yes, yes.


Infanta: Si', bueno. Sen~ora, hable mi de les hombres ingleses.


Don: So tell me, Mrs. Queen, about Englishmen.


Queen: Well, they spend most of their time with animals, you know, and with 

       other men. But, oh, when they do come to the women, they only want one



Infanta: (grins) Que? Que?


Don: And what is that?


Queen: Well, it's a kind of pudding made of bread and butter and raisins,

       and, of course, the other thing...


Infanta: Que el otro? Que el otro?


Don: And what is the other thing?


Queen: (as though it's obvious) Oh, well, custard!


Don: Crema!


Infanta: (laughs) No... Edmundo; que tal es?


Don: Edmund; what's he like?


Queen: Well, I told you: this pudding...


Infanta: No no no...


Queen: No?


Infanta: En la cama! (puts her hands together, resting them on her cheek)


Don: No -- what's he like in bed?


Queen: Oh. Well, in bed, he likes hot milk, with just a little touch of



Don: No, no, no... (concentrating on the words) What is he like?


Queen: Oh. Well, he's like a little rabbit, really.


Infanta: Conejo?! (giggles excitedly about this) Mama, mama, cuanto le quiero!

	 (she moves over to hug Queen, forces Don to bend forward)


Don: Mummy, mummy, how much I love him!


(in Edmund's room; Edmund, Percy and Baldrick are wearing antlers, and none

 of them are at all excited; a dog is cooking over a fire)


Edmund: I would never have believed that my stag party would be like this --

        the most depressing night of my life.


Baldrick: Well, My Lord, at least you can take solace from one thing.


Edmund: What's that?


Baldrick: You can be pretty sure your wife's a virgin.


Edmund: Or at least there are no living witnesses to the contrary. If she

        wasn't, we might still stand a chance. Officially, you've still got

        to be a virgin.


Baldrick: Right.


	(Edmund gets an idea and looks at Percy.)


Percy: What, My Lord?


	(Edmund's eyes move to Baldrick.)


Percy: Oh! (he also looks at Baldrick, grinning)


Baldrick: Oh, no... No... NO!


Edmund: Yes! Yes! (stands) YES!


(later, outside the Infanta's bedroom; Edmund and Percy are dabbing perfume

 on Baldrick, who is in a nightshirt)


Baldrick: Please, My Lord, I beg you to reconsider.


Edmund: Baldrick, if there was any other way, you know I'd take it.


Baldrick: But I'll die in there.


Edmund: Don't worry -- we'll give you a hero's funeral; bury you at sea; say

        you died in combat with an enemy vessel.  That's it. There we are.

	Go on, in you go. (pats him on the head) Little boy with big job to

	do...  Come on, Percy, let's get the King.


	(Edmund leaves. Percy begins to but then turns to Baldrick. They

	 shake hands then embrace for a while, Percy half crying, half

	 laughing. Percy then leaves. Baldrick enters the bedroom. The

	 room is completely dark -- nothing can be seen.)


Baldrick: Infanta... Infanta...


Infanta: Edmundo? Edmundo, amor mio!


Don: Oh Edmund, my love!


Infanta: Ohh!!!


(in map room; Edmund and Percy enter)


Edmund: My Lord, Your Majesty...


King: What?


(in the bedroom)


	(moans from both Infanta and Baldrick)


(in map room)


Edmund: I bring the gravest of news.


King: What; have the armies of the Rhine been slaughtered to a man and their

      heads cut off, and melted cheese poured down their nostrils in the

      traditional Swiss manner?


Edmund: No, My Lord.


(in the bedroom)


Infanta: No te de tengas, sen~or (sapiente?)!


	(Baldrick's noises are muffled)


Don: Don't hold back, please, my little one.


(in map room)


King: Do you bring me news of the Russian royal family mistaken for bison

      due to their excessive winter clothing, and hunted down, chopped to

      pieces and eaten as little sweets by Mongolian bandits?


Edmund: No, My Lord.


(in the bedroom)


Infanta: (loudly) Ooohhhhh!!!!


Don: Securo!


(in map room)


King: Well, what then?


Edmund: My Lord, the Spanish Infanta is not a virgin. (puts his fingers to

	his head, acting distraught)


(in the bedroom)


Infanta: Oooooaaahh...


(in map room)


King: Oh yes, I know that!


(in the bedroom)


Infanta: Mas...


(in map room)


King: Her uncle told me.


(in the bedroom)


Don: Again please!


(in map room)


King: We took five hundred off the dowry because of it.


Edmund: But I thought that--


King: Only one of you has to be a virgin!


	(Edmund is speechless. Percy looks confused.)


King: Anything else?


	(Edmund turns away. Percy starts to say, "But..." as though he

	 thought -- or had been told (like early in this episode) -- that

	 Edmund wasn't a virgin. Edmund shoos him outside, however, and

	 follows Percy out.) [Brian Blessed (King) is heard to mutter about

	 something being better -- perhaps referring to the take of that



(later, in the court; Edmund's marriage commences; King is in the back with

 a soldier, moving figures about on a small map)


Archbishop: Dearly beloved, we are gathered together, here in the sight of

	    Our Lord, to witness the marriage of two God-fearing Christians.


	(Baldrick also is in attendance; his face is black and blue.)


Archbishop: Are you Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh?


Edmund: Yes, I am...


Archbishop: And are you Maria Escalosa (fiena?) Infanta?


Infanta: Si', si', si'! (Dante?) prisa, estupido! (Deja? [that's French!])

	 que mi (?????) muslos de abraze!


Don: Yes, you stupid person, hurry up -- I wish to entwine him again in my 

     broad thighs.


Archbishop: Marriage is an holy state, conceived by God. If any man

	    here knows just cause why they may not be married...      \


Edmund: (he looks up, and we hear his thoughts) Oh, dear Lord, please  /

        help me now!                                                  /


Archbishop: ...let him speak now or forever hold his peace.


Edmund: (looks up; thinks) Now's your chance!


Archbishop: So be it.


Edmund: (looks up; thinks) Oh, thanks a lot!


King: Come on, hurry up!


Archbishop: (faster) Do you, Edmund Plantagenet, take Maria Escalosa...  \


Don: Usted, Edmundo Plantagenato--                                       /


Archbishop: Oh, do shut up!


Don: Silencio!


Archbishop: be your lawful wedded wife; to have and to hold; to cherish

	    and to delight; (he looks at Infanta and lets his words slip)

	    to chastise and to beat until death? (comes to his senses)

	    Er, until death do you part?


	(Edmund nods reluctantly)


King: Speak up -- can't hear a thing back here!


Edmund: (weakly) I do.




Edmund: I do, I do, I do!!!


	(Infanta is delighted at his apparent excitement)


Archbishop: Do you, Maria Escalosa Infanta...


Infanta: Si'! Si'! Si'!


Archbishop: ...take Edmund Plantagenet to be your lawful wedded husband?


Don: Yes! Yes! Yes!


Edmund: Oh no!!!


Archbishop: I then pronounce you--


Messenger 3: (entering) Stop!


Archbishop: ...Christ!!!


Messenger 3: I bring absolutely unbelievable news that must halt the wedding!


	(Edmund really is excited now)


King: What; have the Swiss and French made sudden peace with each other

      at a mountain-pass rendez-vous, then forged a clandestine alliance

      with Spain, thus leaving us without friends in Europe, unless by

      chance we make an immediate pact with Hungary?


Messenger 3: (looks at his scroll, reads it through to himself) Yes.


King: As I thought! Are there any Hungarian princesses in the castle?


Harry: Oh, yes, Father, I think I've got one. (looks at his list) Erm, yes:

       Princess Leia of Hungary.


Edmund: What's she like?


Harry: (turns over slip of paper) Leia is, er, "young and beautiful, her eyes

       are like opals and her hair a cascade of perfect chestnut."


Edmund: Oh, well! That sounds all right, doesn't it!


Infanta: (approaches King) Que pasa, King? Que pasa?


Don: Excuse me, what is happening, please?


King: Call her into the court! (turns to Infanta) And as for that great

      Spanish dumpling there...


	(Infanta, hearing the interpretation, slaps Don)


King: ...get her out of my sight at once, or I'll eat her! Yaaah!!!


Infanta: (approaches Edmund) Amor mio! Al lado de mi! Amor mio!


Don: My love! Beside me! Beside me!


Edmund: Sorry, what can I do -- politics!


	(Infanta and Don are taken away by a soldier)


King: Come on, come on, come on! Where is she? Where is she? Where is

      Princess Leia?


	(Edmund looks down the row of beautiful young princesses; they all act

	 innocently seductive. Edmund looks pleased. From behind Countess

	 Caroline, Leia comes out. She's a child about six to eight years old, awaiting

	 the arrival of new front teeth.)


King: Ah, good, good!


	(Edmund doubletakes)


King: Osmund, meet your new wife...


Leia: Hello, Edmund.


Edmund: Hello...


Leia: (bored) Are we getting married now?


Edmund: Yes, yes, I believe we are...


Leia: Come on, then.


	(Leia takes Edmund's hand and brings him to the altar. She skips

	 as they make their way there.)


Archbishop: (shrugs at the absurdity, then bends to Leia's height and speaks

	    slowly) Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today--


	(Leia giggles)


(That evening, in Edmund and Leia's bedroom (separate beds); Edmund reads her

 a bedtime story)


Edmund: "...and so it came to pass that the big bear had to leave all his

	friends in (the forest?), and go to live in a land far away, where the

	elfs and the fairies would look after him until the day that he died."


Leia: (sighs) Oh, that was lovely, Edmund. What a happy story. Isn't it time 

      to put the light out?


Edmund: Yes, my dear, I think it is. It must be at least six o'clock...

	(blows out the candle)


(end theme)


Cast in Affable Order


Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh . . . . . . Rowan Atkinson

King Richard IV . . . . . . . . . . . Brian Blessed

The Queen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Elspet Gray

Harry, Prince of Wales  . . . . . . . Robert East

Percy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tim McInnerny

Baldrick  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tony Robinson

Infanta Maria Escalosa of Spain . . . Miriam Margolyes

Don Speekingleesh, An Interpreter . . Jim Broadbent

Mrs. Applebottom  . . . . . . . . . . Jane Freeman

Rev. Lloyd  . . . . . . . . . . . . . John Rapley

Mr. Applebottom . . . . . . . . . . . Howard Lew Lewis

Lord Chiswick . . . . . . . . . . . . Stephen Tate

1st Messenger . . . . . . . . . . . . Kenn Wells

2nd Messenger . . . . . . . . . . . . Richard Mitchley

3rd & 4th Messengers  . . . . . . . . David Nunn

Archbishop  . . . . . . . . . . . . . Willoughby Goddard

Princess Leia of Hungary  . . . . . . Natasha King

Lady on Ramparts  . . . . . . . . . . Harriet Keevil


Written by Richard Curtis and Rowan Atkinson

With additional dialogue by William Shakespeare


A BBC TV production in association with The Seven Network, Australia




Leia: Can I have a drink of water, please?


Edmund: Yes, yes, yes, all right...



Back to top of Part 1

Part I Episode 5: Witchsmeller Pursuivant

The King contracts a nasty case of the Black Death and blames it on witchcraft. Only one man can sniff out the hocus-pocus--the cruel, corrupt, and thorougly incorrigible Witchsmeller!


(in a cottage, four people are eating supper. [If anyone recognises the

 actresses, please let us know which woman speaking is Mrs. Field and

 which is Mrs. Tyler -- check the cast list for actress names])


Woman 1: What about this plague, then? Rumours from the North say it's

	 worse there than ever.


Piers: No, no... Now that we've found out about the rats, we'll never have

       plague again.


Woman 2: You know what they're saying: "A rat a day keeps the plague away!"


Piers: Believe me, madam: There'll be no more plague in our lifetime.


Woman 1: Well, I hope you're right.  (She stands and walks to get a bowl.)


	(The three left at the table suddenly die. Woman 1 turns around and

	 screams. `The Black Adder' logo comes out of her mouth as the opening

	 theme begins.)



Caption: By the autumn of the Year of Our Lord, 1495, the Black Plague once 

         again howled westwards across Europe from the Indies, carried by

         seamen and entering England by the South West Passage. Each day,

	 thousands died. Village after village disappeared in its evil wake,

	 and not even the best and noblest escaped its horror.


(in a corridor in the castle, Prince Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh and his squire,

 Baldrick, are fiddling with a royal portrait while Lord Percy guards the

 corridor. Percy, however, turns his head round to see what Edmund is doing,

 and, at that moment, Edmund's older brother, Prince Harry, walks up.)


Harry: Ah, Edmund, I'm glad I've caught you.


Edmund: (hiding the portrait behind his back) Er, doing what?


Harry: I'm afraid Father's feeling a bit under the weather.


Edmund: (a bit excited at the possibility of being closer to the throne)

	Oh dear! Any idea what?


Harry: Not sure -- I think it's probably Black Death. Nevertheless, I am sure

       that he'd appreciate a little visit from you...


Edmund: Oh. Well, I'm sure I can pop my head round the door...


Harry: ...sort of nowish.



(later, Edmund approaches the door to the throne room; the Queen is outside

 the door)


Edmund: Mother, would you like to...?


Queen: Oh, no, dear -- he won't let me near him.


	(Edmund opens the door to find the King with his sword raised. Edmund

	 shuts the door and steps aside as the King's sword pokes through the



Queen: How is he?


Edmund: Well, he's up.



(in meeting room, Harry is holding a council with various lords. [Again,

 anyone who knows the actors and can tell us which speaker is Lord Ross

 and which is Lord Fife, please help])


Harry: My Lords of the Council, we face today the gravest crisis this country

       has known since the Roman invasion.


All: Hear hear!


	(an officer enters, carrying a helmet)


Harry: Therefore, I propose--


Officer: Your Highness, the King has stirred and calls for you.


Harry: Ah. (swallows nervously) Very well. (removes his hat; stands) Gentlemen,

       I must leave you. (takes the helmet from Officer and draws his sword,

       preparing to meet the deranged King) Prince Edmund is in charge!


	(Percy begins to bang on the table in approval, but all the lords

	 mutter "Oh shame..." so he stops. Harry and Officer leave. Baldrick

	 brings Harry's notes to Edmund.)


Edmund: Er, yes, right. Gentlemen, right... (reads from Harry's notes) As you

	know, today we face the gravest crisis this country has known since

	the Roman invasion.


	(They all make sounds of protest: "Nonsense!"; "Rubbish!"; etc.)


Lord 1: What about the Viking invasion?


Lord 2: ...and the Norman invasion?


Angus: ...and the Swiss invasion?


Edmund: Er, well, the greatest crisis for some time.


Lord 2: And we all know why!


Edmund: Why?


Angus: Because the King is possessed!


Edmund: What?!


Lord 2: True! True! The land is full of omens of bewitchment. Only last week

        in Cornwall, a man with four heads was seen taking tea on the beach;

        and two women in Windsor claimed to have been raped by a fish!


Lord 1: I, too, have heard such tales. In (Harrigate?), it rained phlegm; and

        they do say that, in Edinburgh, the graves did open and the ghosts of

        our ancestors rose up and competed in athletic sports!


Percy: ...and a friend of mine had this awful pimple on the inside of his



Edmund: Percy, shut up, for God's sake.


	(There are mutters of "Witchcraft!")


Angus: ...and a farmer in (Rye?) heard a cow reciting Geoffrey Chaucer; and

       a young woman in Shropshire saw Geoffrey Chaucer in a field, mooing

       and suckling a young heifer!


Edmund: Gentlemen, gentlemen, surely we aren't the sort of people who believe

        in this sort of thing. I mean, next you'll be telling me is

        that washing your hair in bat's droppings stops you going bald.


Lord 2: But it's true! I couldn't find enough bats, and look what happened!

        (removes his hat to show his baldness)


Angus: I move that we do the only thing we can do to remove this curse from

       the kingdom.


Edmund: Ah, well, that sounds like the answer, doesn't it!


Lord 1: Send for the Witchsmeller Pursuivant! 


	(They all agree, and stand up. Edmund's protests are not heard.)


Lord 2: Call for the (??)


Angus: The Prince of Wales must be informed!


	(They begin to walk out. Edmund's calls of "No, wait!" are ignored.

	 Percy starts to walk out with them.)


Edmund: Percy, PERCY! 


Percy: What?


Edmund: What the devil do you think you're doing?


Percy: Look, look, I just can't take the pressure of all these omens anymore!


Edmund: Percy...


Percy: No, no, really, I'm serious. Only this morning in the courtyard,

       I saw a horse with two heads and two bodies!


Edmund: Two horses standing next to each other?


Percy: Yes, I suppose it could have been.


Edmund: Honestly, Percy, I bet you're just the sort of person who thinks that

        sticking your finger up a sheep's bottom on Good Friday will make you



Baldrick: That's rubbish!


Edmund: Quite, really.


Baldrick: It's Easter Monday.


Edmund: Yes, remind me not to shake your hand during a religious festival,

        Baldrick. I don't believe it; I mean, who is this Witchsmeller

        Pursuivant, anyway?


Baldrick: I don't know, My Lord, but Mistress Scott would.


Edmund: Ah yes; the old crone with a cat...


Percy: Oh yes, the cat! Lovely. Oh, but she lives in the village!


Edmund: So?


Percy: Everyone's dying of the plague!


Edmund: Oh, yes, that's what they claim, those peasants! Any excuse to get

        off a decent day's work...



(outside of the castle gate; Edmund, Percy and Baldrick enter the village.

 Corpses are strewn about the streets, and moans and cries are heard.

 [Again, those who can tell us which peasant is Cain and which is Abel, and

 which is Ned and which is Jack, please do. Cain and Abel will be numbered

 the same way they were in the transcription of "The Archbishop."])


Edmund: (stepping over some of the corpses) I mean, obviously, there are some

        genuine cases...


	(Percy trips over a corpse and falls to the ground; Edmund and

	 Baldrick continue walking.)


Villager 1: Good morning, Prince Edmund.


Edmund: 'morning, peasant!


Villager 2: 'morning, Prince Edmund.


Edmund: 'morning, peasant!


Villager 3: (speaking from atop a heap of corpses in a carriage)

	    'morning, Prince Edmund.


Edmund: 'morning, peasant!


	(Villager 3 dies)


Baldrick: My Lord, shouldn't you disguise yourself?


Edmund: Hmm?


Baldrick: Well, I mean: we don't want someone with a grudge coming up and

          infecting you on purpose.


Edmund: Ah, yes, you're right.


	(Edmund walks through a clothesline. He emerges wearing a bit of

	 cloth with a thin part running diagonally across his face, not hiding

	 his features at all; the rest flowing behind him.)


Villager 4: 'morning, stranger.


Edmund: 'morning, friend!


Peasant 3 [Ned or Jack]: 'morning, stranger.


Edmund: 'morning, friend!


Peasant 3: (to his companion, [Cain or Abel]) Who is that dark stranger?


Peasant 1 [Cain or Abel]: Oh, that'll be Prince Edmund.


Percy: This way, My Lord. (he puts his cape down over a patch of manure)


Edmund: Yes. (avoids walking on Percy's cape; walks around it)


	(A crier steps out of a building, ringing a hand bell.)


Crier: Bring out your dea-- (he dies)


Edmund: (to an adolescent boy peasant) You, where's Mistress Scott?


Peasant 4 [Ned or Jack]: You just passed her. (points to a charred stake

                         in the ground)


Edmund: Oh my God! (sees Percy kneeling on the ground, holding some small

	bones he picked up from near a tiny stake in the ground) And what's



Percy: The, er, cat, My Lord.


Edmund: (calls) Does anyone know what happened?


Peasant 2 [Cain or Abel]: (raises his arm) No, I don't!


Peasant 4: Me neither. I was right on the other side of town when we burned



	(Peasant 2 hits Peasant 4 in the back of the head.)


Peasant 2: Shh!


Edmund: You burned her? Why?


Peasant 2: (trying to act baffled) I don't know.


Peasant 4: Well, it was because she was a witch, wasn't it?


Peasant 2: Shh!


	(Peasant 2 hits Peasant 4 in the back of the head.)


Edmund: You burned Mistress Scott for being a witch? Why?


	(Peasant 1 and Peasant 3 arrive.)


Peasant 4: Can't say -- it's a secret.


Edmund: A secret? (puts his hands on his hips) Do you know who I am?


Peasant 2: A stranger.


Edmund: Oh yes, that's right. Well, tell me anyway.


Peasant 2: No, no! We can't! And I'll tell you why: because if you'd been part

           of a secret committee to invite the Witchsmeller Pursuivant into

           town, and he'd already burnt four of your best friends, would you

           go telling everyone?


Edmund: No, I suppose I wouldn't. So, is it the Witchsmeller Pursuivant who

        burned her?


Peasant 3: He's guessed!


Peasant 1: He's clever.


Baldrick: They don't call him Clever Jake for nothing, you know.


Edmund: Well, they don't call me Clever Ja-- oh, I see. So what does this

        Witchsmeller man look like?


Peasant 1: No-one knows, My Lord -- no-one!


	(a dark hooded figure with glowing red eyes filters in as Peasant 3



Peasant 3: He's a master of disguise, and he mostly appears only at night.

           (to the hooded figure) That's right, isn't it!


Witchsmeller: (for it is he) I believe so. (goes to behind Edmund)


Edmund: Ah, right, so he won't be around, now. (Witchsmeller has removed his

	hood) Well, let me tell you something: If this so-called Witchsmeller

        burnt Mistress Scott--


Percy: ...and her pussycat...


Edmund: ...and her pu-- be quiet, Percy. ...then there's something wrong

        with his nose. And I should know: they don't call me Clever Pete for



Baldrick: (muttering) Jake, My Lord.


Edmund: What about him?


Baldrick: Clever *Jake*, My Lord.


Edmund: Where?


Baldrick: You are Clever Jake, My Lord.


Edmund: Oh yes. (??) They don't call me Clever Pete at all! They call me

	Clever Jake. And if I were you, and I'd asked the Witchsmeller into

	town, I'd kick the big-nosed bully straight out again! (to

	Witchsmeller) What do you say?


Witchsmeller: I think it's worth serious consideration.


Edmund: Well, exactly. Take Clever Tom's advice, and send him back to the

	madhouse he came from. Come on, boys. Put them down, Percy. (hits

	Percy's hand, causing cat bones to fly everywhere; this upsets Percy)

	Come on. Mistress Scott is obviously in no state to help us today.


	(Witchsmeller grins as Edmund and company leave)



(in courtroom)


Witchsmeller: (has his hands crossed; one hand has `EVIL' written on the

	      fingers; the other hand has `GOOD' written on the fingers)

	      I have two functions: to protect the good (turns up and opens

	      the `GOOD' hand, revealing a white egg), and to crush the evil.

              (turns up and opens the `EVIL' hand, revealing a brown egg)

	      Watch! (he squeezes the eggs; both of them break)


Harry: Fascinating! Absolutely fascinating! Erm, actually, you have crushed

       both eggs, you know.


Witchsmeller: Some that seem good sometimes proveth to be evil.

	      (he holds up the remains of the evil egg)


	(Baldrick enters)


Baldrick: My lords; The Duke of Edinburgh.


	(Edmund and Percy enter)


Harry: Ah, Edmund! Come on in, come on in. The Witchsmeller's arrived.


Edmund: Oh yes? Old Bignose is back, is he?


	(Witchsmeller turns, recognising Edmund's voice. They both realise

	 that they were the ones in the village. Edmund is very surprised.)


Edmund: Oh, hello... I'm delighted to meet you. Why, I'm one of your greatest



Witchsmeller: "Old Bignose is back"??


Edmund: Yes. (points down the hall) Old Bignose is back. He's in a terrible

	state. I was talking to him just now. He's a great admirer of yours

	as well.


Percy: Who's this?


Edmund: Er (motions down the hall again), Old Bignose... (Percy just is

	confused; Edmund speaks again to Witchsmeller) In fact, I was (??)

	hearing about your work in (Taunton?). Imagine that -- every single

	person in the village having an affair with the same duck.


Witchsmeller: The Duck of Taunton was a tragic circumstance.


Edmund: And I hear you very kindly burned our Mistress Scott for us.


Witchsmeller: Oh yes. (turns to Percy) And her pussycat. 


Edmund: Ah, but have you found the chief witch yet?


Witchsmeller: I feel I may be very close.


Edmund: Ooh, get the kindling ready! Make sure that stake is well done!


Harry: Witchsmeller, my dear, if you do happen to come across someone who's

       a bit -- you know, um -- witchy, how do you prove him guilty?


Witchsmeller: By trial or by ordeal.


Edmund: Ah, the ordeal by water...


Witchsmeller: No, by axe.


Edmund: (suspecting something like that) Oh!


Witchsmeller: The suspected witch has his head placed upon a block (he pushes

	      Edmund's neck with his sword), and an axe aimed at his neck. If

	      the man is guilty, the axe will bounce off his neck (he bounces

	      his sword against Edmund's neck), so we burn him; if he is not

	      guilty, the axe will simply slice his head off (he slices his

	      sword down; Edmund stands up straight just in time).


Edmund: What a very fair test that is.


Witchsmeller: Would you like to take a less violent test yourself, Your

	      Highness, by way of *demon*stration? (he has brought forth

	      a small table)


Edmund: How much less violent?


Witchsmeller: I place before the suspect a dagger and crucifix... (he does so)


Harry: Oh, how interesting!


Witchsmeller: The suspect is blindfolded, and if he picks up the dagger from

	      the table, he is Satan's bedfellow.


Harry: Yes, Edmund, I think you should do it, eh? At least take yourself out

       of the running, wot!


Lord 2: I haven't seen your broomstick recently, Your Highness!


Harry: (to Lord 2) Oh, very good, (?)! Very good!


Edmund: I'm not so sure about all this, you know... (Witchsmeller puts a bag

	over his head)


Harry: Oh, come on!


	(Edmund takes one final look at the dagger and knife on the table,

	 then replaces the bag.)


Witchsmeller: You will all notice how it has suddenly become much darker.

	      (he points his sword to something behind everyone, causing them

	      to turn; he switches the knife and crucifix positions)



Edmund: (reaches down confidently and picks up the dagger) There we are!


	(Everyone is shocked)


Lord 2: Prince Edmund's a witch!


Harry: How the devil did that happen?


	(Edmund removes the bag and sees what he is holding)


Witchsmeller: (now carrying a large cross) (??), My Lord, as I thought: This

	      is the source of evil in your Kingdom. This is your witch.

	      Behold; Lucifer's brother! B-b-bl-bl-b-b-BURN THE WITCH!


Edmund: Yes, er, I'm not quite sure I caught the first part of that...


Witchsmeller: (?????), My Lord, and you will know the truth.


Harry: If that's what you recommend.


Edmund: But, Harry, you can't let him do this! 

	[Rowan Atkinson actually flubbed this line, saying `Henry'.]


Harry: He is very highly thought of, you know.


Edmund: But he's a quack!


Witchsmeller: What did you say?


Edmund: "Quack"! "Quack"! "Quack"!


Witchsmeller: You see, My Lord, how the Duck of Taunton lives within him!!!

	      (throws duck feathers at Edmund)


Harry: Yes, I'm afraid so! Let him be tried tomorrow!


	(Edmund burbles futilely)



(Edmund's trial, in the castle)


Officer: Lords and Ladies of England, this court is summoned to adjudge the

	 most heinous of all crimes, that of witchcraft.


	(The crowd screams; Woman 1 falls from her seat, onto the floor)


Officer: Further (???) this day, as the accused is a Prince of the Realm.

	 Step forward, Edmund, Duke of Edinburgh.


	(The guards make Edmund stand and take his place; the crowd gasps)


Woman 2: Look at his hair!


Woman 1: His hair proves it!


Officer: Who will defend the accused...


	(Percy stands)


Officer: ...and thus condemn himself to certain burning at the stake as a

	 partner in Satan if the accused is found guilty?


	(Percy sits, acting quite interested in his book and quill)


Baldrick: Lord Percy will defend His Royal Highness. (motions at Percy to



Percy: Oh, yes, yes, me, sorry, yes... Hello...


Witchsmeller: (arriving, carrying a Bible) Witch!


	(The crowd gasps)


Witchsmeller: Witch!!


	(The crowd gasps)


Witchsmeller: (now in front of Percy) WITCH!!!


	(The crowd cheers)


Woman 2: Look at his hair!


Woman 1: His hair proves it!


Witchsmeller: (to Harry) My Lord, will you force us to listen to the pleadings

	      of a man who may be a witch himself?


	(The crowd gasps)


Harry: You know, you're absolutely right. Yes, well, that concludes the case

       for the defence. Thank you, Lord Percy. Let the prosecutor begin.


Witchsmeller: Prince Edmund, are you a Christian?


Edmund: Yes, of course I am.


Witchsmeller: Can you say the Lord's Prayer?


Edmund: Well, yes -- I can say it backwards if you like!


Witchsmeller: CONFESSION!


	(The crowd cheers)


Witchsmeller: Now, Edmund, I believe you have a pussycat...


Edmund: Yes.


Witchsmeller: Ohh!


	(The crowd `Ohh's)


Witchsmeller: Its name is Bubbles?


Edmund: Right.


Witchsmeller: Yes, or, to give it its full name, Beelzebubbles!!!


	(The crowd screams; Woman 1 falls off her seat, to the floor)


Witchsmeller: Do you deny that you were seen, on the Feast of St. Jacob the

	      Turgid, speaking to this little cat Bubbles?


Edmund: Well, of course I deny it!


Witchsmeller: Ah, but the chambermaid Mary heard you say, and I quote, "Hello,

	      little Bubbles, would you like some milk?"


Edmund: Well, I might have said *that*!


Witchsmeller: Ah!!!


	(The crowd `Ah's)


Witchsmeller: And what did you mean by it?


Edmund: Well, I meant, would the cat like some milk.


Witchsmeller: Milk? What did you mean by `milk'?


Edmund: I meant *milk*! Bloody *milk*!!!


Witchsmeller: BLOODY MILK!!! It was a mixture of milk and blood!


Edmund: No, no, just milk!


Witchsmeller: Ah, blood was to come later!


Edmund: (pleading) There wasn't any blood!




	(the crowd screams and cheers; Percy leans back in his chair, defeated)


Witchsmeller: I (??), My Lord. (??) you have a horse called Black Satin?


Edmund: Yes.


Witchsmeller: Yes, and do you confess than on the thirtieth day of

	      (Norris time?) you did say to this horse Black Satin, and I

	      quote, "Satin, would you like some carrots?"


Edmund: Well, I might have done -- he likes carrots.


Witchsmeller: Carrots?


Edmund: (suspicious of the question) Yes, carrots...


Witchsmeller: But, ladies and gentlemen, we all know that carrots are the

	      Devil's favourite food!


Percy: (stands) No! No, we don't. If the Devil likes carrots, why isn't

       mentioned in the Bible, then? Why doesn't it say, "And He took the

       Lord up to the top of an high mountain and offered Him a carrot"?


Edmund: Yes, why isn't "Thou shalt not eat carrots" in the Ten Commandments?


Witchsmeller: IT IS!


	(The crowd cheers)


Witchsmeller: (opening his Bible) The Ten Commandments of (Jeremoth?), in the

	      Appendix to the Apocrypha: "And the Lord said unto the children

	      of (Bedinibott?), `Neither shalt thou eat the fruit of the tree

	      that is known as the Carrot Tree'."


Baldrick: Carrots don't grow on trees!


Witchsmeller: Oh really? And how did you get to know so much about carrots,



	(The crowd laughs)


Witchsmeller: WITCH!


	(The crowd gasps)


Witchsmeller: (dramatically) My Lord, I call my first witness!


	(The crowd cheers)


(Later, the witness is on the stand. He is Edmund's horse, Black Satin.)


Witchsmeller: Now, Satin, just relax. You're among friends. Good. Now, tell

	      me, in your own words: Did you, Satin, on certain nights last

	      (Gareth's?) tide, indulge -- albeit, I accept, in all innocence

	      -- infrenzied, naked, and obscene Satanic orgies with your

	      master, known to you as the Great Grumbledook?


Edmund: What?


Witchsmeller: Silence, Grumbledook! Satin, you're not replying. (to Harry)

	      He's not replying, My Lord. Are we to assume this horse has

	      something to hide?


Edmund: Either that or he can't talk.


Witchsmeller: A likely story. Black Satin, known in the Hierarchy of Evil as

	      Black Satin the Loquacious, are you or are you not the servant

	      of Satan?


	(The crowd screams; Black Satin whinnies)


Harry: I'm sorry, I didn't quite catch that. Was that a yea or a nay?


Witchsmeller: It was a neigh, My Lord, but I don't believe a word of it.

	      I call for a recess. He may think he (controls us?), but

	      we have ways of making him talk!


	(The crowd cheers)



(Later, Edmund, Percy and Baldrick are in a cell. The Queen is outside of it.)


Queen: Well, I suppose this is what comes of being a witch.


Edmund: Mother, I'm not a witch!


Queen: Oh, Edmund, you always were a bit of a fibber.


Edmund: Mother, I beg of you: use whatever power you have to help me.


Queen: I haven't had any power for years, you know.


Edmund: But Father's sick! You must do something, otherwise...


Queen: Otherwise what?


Edmund: Well, otherwise, I'll be burnt!


Queen: Ah, yes, this would be a pity.


Edmund: Well, thanks.


Queen: I'll see if I can sort out something. (leaves)


Percy: My Lord, I had an idea how to get out of this.


Edmund: Yes?


Percy: Send for all the greatest lawyers in the land, and they could save you!


Edmund: Brilliant! Contact them at once.


Percy: I've already done it, My Lord! (holds up some pages of paper)


Edmund: Oh, Percy, thank you! Are those the letters?


Percy: (a bit reluctant) Er, yes...


Edmund: Read them.


Percy: (more reluctant) Very well. Erm, this is from Robert Wyatt in Somerset:

       (reads) "What you ask is against reason and God. I spit on you and your

       master, and look forward to passing water over both your graves at a

       later date."


Edmund: Yes... (looks at another one, held by Baldrick) What does that one say?


Baldrick: It's from John Watts.


Edmund: Oh, `Stinker' Watts!


Baldrick: (reads; although Percy puts forward a hand as though he'd rather

	  it wasn't read) "Dear Percy: I remember being at school with Prince

	  Edmund and yourself, and so was very interested by your letter.


Edmund: Yes?


Baldrick: "May you both die horribly. Yours, John Watts."


Edmund: Oh no, I'm doomed!


Baldrick: Wait a moment, My Lord! I have a cunning plan that cannot fail!


Edmund: Oh! What is it?


Baldrick: Well--


	(The guards, Soft and Anon, come into the foreground)


Soft: My wife was wondering whether you'd like to come round for dinner



Anon: No, thanks.


Soft: Why not?


Anon: Well, the food tastes like manure, and, frankly, I find you both very



Soft: Oh, fair enough. How about *next* Thursday, then?


Anon: Er, yeah, that's lovely, yeah. About half eight?


Soft: Yeah, (?), be there.


	(Baldrick has finished telling his plan)


Edmund: Brilliant! (laughs, shakes Baldrick's hand) Well done, Baldrick!

        Very cunning! You may capture the eagle, but you cannot clip its



	(The guards chat some more)


Soft: By the way, how's that eagle of yours?


Anon: Oh, fine, fine. Mind you, I had a bit of trouble to start with, but, now

      I've clipped its wings, no problem!


Soft: Glad to hear it.


	(As the guards separate again, Edmund goes to the bars.)


Edmund: Tomorrow, I shall not be so meek! (laughs in his silly evil way)



(at the trial again; everyone is booing and hissing and Edmund and company,

 but Edmund sneers back, Percy raspberries back, and Baldrick spits back)


Witchsmeller: (holding a page of paper) My Lord, unhappily, the horse, blessed

	      Satin the Confessor, who was to have been our first witness



Harry: Yes?


Witchsmeller: ...cannot be with us.


Harry: Oh dear.


Witchsmeller: However, before he died--


Edmund: You bastard!


Witchsmeller: ...he did make this signed confession. I'll read it to you.

	      "I, Black Satin, confess that my former master, Edmund, is the

	      servant of Satan...


	(The crowd gasps)


Witchsmeller: "...and I spoke to him on the matter frequently...


	(The crowd `Ooh's)


Witchsmeller: "...over a gallon" -- a gallon! -- "...a gallon of stableboy's

	      blood"! (he turns the paper to display that, below the letter,

	      there is a horseshoe print and splattered blood on the page)


	(The crowd screams)


Witchsmeller: (??), My Lord, this turgid, horrid, nasty and most evil case

	      draws to an end. I call my last witness!


	(The crowd cheers)


Edmund: Oh yes, and what is it: a cow? a talkative badger? an easily bribed



Witchsmeller: I call Jane Firkettle!


	(The crowd cheers as the old woman takes the stand)


Witchsmeller: Now, Mrs. Firkettle, can you see that man standing over there?


Firkettle: Which?


Witchsmeller: (as though she said `witch') That's him...


Firkettle: 'course I recognise him! (waves cutely at Edmund and kisses the air)


Edmund: She's seen me on a coin.


Witchsmeller: And have you or have you not committed sins of the flesh with



Firkettle: I have...


Edmund: You must be joking!


Firkettle: my deepest shame.


Edmund: And mine! I mean, look at her!


Witchsmeller: Can you describe these foul deeds?


Firkettle: After we had just kissed once, he transformed into a wild animal!


	(The crowd gasps)


Edmund: Or perhaps I do remember you...


Witchsmeller: Anything else?


Firkettle: Yes, My Lord. Three months later, I was great with child.


Edmund: Oh, for God's sake...


Witchsmeller: You bore him a son.


Firkettle: I did -- my little Johnny!


Witchsmeller: Can you see this son of Satan anywhere in this court?


	(The crowd looks about at each other -- one of them is a man bright

	 red with a pointed black beard and horns; Witchsmeller holds a white

	 poodle in Firkettle's line of sight.)


Firkettle: (points) Yes, that's him!


Witchsmeller: I give you John Grumbledook!!! (holds the poodle up high)


	(The crowd screams)


Lord 1: His hair gives him away!


Edmund: Oh, come on -- he doesn't look the slightest bit like me.


Witchsmeller: My Lord, we have three proofs of witchcraft: a cat that drinks

	      blood, a horse that talks, and a man who propogates poodles!!!


	(The crowd murmurs excitedly as Witchsmeller falls to the floor in

	 his passion.)


Witchsmeller: These men must burn! These men must burn!


	(Harry turns to the other members of the tribunal, nodding; the

	 crowd, led by the Officer, chants "Burn!" Then Harry sees the

	 Officer getting into the crowd's excitement and looks at him a

	 bit sternly, and mouths something [I can't figure out what].)


Officer: Silence for the Prince of Wales.


Harry: (stands) The verdict of this court is that the accused are found guilty

       of witchcraft.


	(The crowd cheers)


Harry: The maximum penalty that the law allows is that you be burned

       to death.


	(The crowd cheers; Edmund and company are conspicuously not worried)


Harry: However, in view of your previous good background, I am disposed to

       be lenient.


	(The crowd boos)


Harry: Therefore, I sentence you to be burned alive.


	(The crowd cheers; Edmund is a bit surprised that that's lenient)


Harry: Do you have anything to say?


Percy: (cocky) Well, yes, actually, I'd quite like to say--


Edmund: Shut up, Percy!


Harry: And you, Grumbledook?


Edmund: Yes: NOW!


	(Edmund and company jump; the crowd is agape; Edmund and company

	 land outside the throne room)


Edmund: Brilliant, Baldrick! How you managed that, I'll never know.


	(They're a bit disoriented as to where to go. Baldrick starts down

	 the hall, but Percy points to the door across the anteroom)


Percy: Quick, here!


	(The run through the door, into the throne room -- but the camera

	 view remains in the anteroom. The King is heard yelling and slashing

	 with his sword. The guards appear in the anteroom just as Baldrick,

	 Percy and Edmund rush out of the throne room. Behind them, King has

	 his sword drawn.)


King: You Turkish pigs! (goes back inside)


Edmund: Percy...


Percy: Sorry.



(Outside the castle, the stake is being prepared. A sign reads: "Public

 execution / by Burning / Friday August 11 / Indoors If Wet")


(back in the gaol cell; Edmund and company are bald, each also wearing a ball-

 and-chain. Baldrick touches Edmund, with a plan; Edmund rushes to the bars to

 talk to the guards, who find what he says very boring, even laughable)


Edmund: Look, erm, you two, you wouldn't perhaps consider, for a pretty hefty

	reward, perhaps letting us--


Soft: ...escape...


Edmund: dressing up as washer women... \


Soft and Anon: ...washer women...            /


Edmund: ...and carrying us out in three large wicker laundry baskets? \


Soft and Anon: ...three large wicker laundry baskets...               /


Edmund: No, I suppose not. (goes back into the cell)


Soft: (to Anon) Here comes the wife.


	(The guards stand to attention. Anon opens the cell door for Edmund's

	 wife -- Princess Leia, a child of about six years -- and his mother,

	 the Queen.)


Leia: Hello, Edmund.


Edmund: Hello, dear...


Leia: (giggles) You look funny!


Edmund: Yes -- I've had all my hair cut off.


Leia: Oh yes, that's it.


Edmund: Look, there's no news of a reprieve, is there?


Leia: Oh, no -- everyone's really looking forward to it. Hello, boys.


Percy and Baldrick: Good morning, Your Majesty...


Leia: I have to go to my room, which isn't fair, but, in fact... (steps

      forward, leans closer to them)


Edmund, Percy and Baldrick: (excited) Yes?


Leia: I think I might even get a better view from the window!


Edmund: (disappointed, naturally) Oh, great...


Leia: Well, I think I better be going. (turns to leave, but Queen mouths to

      her, "Don't forget (something)," so she turns back) Oh yes -- your mummy

      asked me to give you this. (holds out a bag)


Edmund: (excited again, eagerly tries to take out what's inside) Oh great!

	What is it; a knife? a file? a small bucket of water?


Leia: No, silly! It's a dolly.


Edmund: (finally pulls it out of the bag; looks at it; is once more

	disappointed) So it is. Yes it is. Great, great. It's just what we



Leia: Goodbye, Edmund. (she and Queen begin to walk out)


Edmund: Goodbye, dear. (surprised that his mother isn't saying a last goodbye)



Queen: Yes? Oh -- bye bye, dear.



(later, outside; Witchsmeller is carrying the large cross, chanting "Burn the

 witch!" to excite the crowd as Edmund, Percy and Baldrick are carried in

 on wooden racks behind him; Witchsmeller stands by the waiting kindling,

 where Harry is standing, while the trio is put against the stake)


Harry: I suppose, really, this must be one of the most difficult parts of the

       job for you.


Witchsmeller: (disinterested) Yes.


Harry: And for the witch, as well.


Witchsmeller: Of course. (takes the torch out of the kindling)


	(The crowd cheers)


Baldrick: My Lord, I have a cunning plan.


Edmund: Oh, fuck off, Baldrick! I think I might be able to stall him.


Witchsmeller: Well, Grumbledook, your time has come. Do you wish to confess?


Edmund: No.


Witchsmeller: Very well. (bends down to start the fire)


Edmund: Er, no, sorry -- yes! Yes, I do, in fact!


Witchsmeller: CONFESSION!!


	(The crowd cheers)


Edmund: I should like to confess, in front of God and this -- rather small --

	crowd, that I have, occasionally, done things wrong.


Witchsmeller: Be more specific.


Edmund: Er, well, I have erred and strayed like a lost ox--


Witchsmeller: Sheep!


Edmund: er, sheep; I have (accoveted?) my father's adultery...


Witchsmeller: Get on with it!


Edmund: I have not honoured my neighbour's ass...


Witchsmeller: Oh, light the fires!!!


Edmund: I'm a witch! I'm a witch!


Percy: Me too! Me too!


	(The crowd cheers)


(Later, the fire is blazing; the crowd is chanting "Burn! Burn! Burn!")


Edmund: Oh, damn -- I'm not even comfortable. (he drops the doll into the

	fire; it is of a hooded figure with bright red eyes carrying a

	large cross)


Witchsmeller: (suddenly dropping the torch) Agh! How fast this heat travels!

	      (shields himself from the fire with his cloak)


Harry: Yes, it is a touch warm, isn't it.


	(The doll is beginning to smoke, as is Witchsmeller)


Witchsmeller: I feel as if I am on fire!


Harry: I know -- I'm rather regretting my choice of undergarments, as well.


	(Witchsmeller's cross suddenly catches fire)


Witchsmeller: I'm burning! I'm burning! I'm burning!


	(The doll catches aflame, as does Witchsmeller)


Harry: Yes, but I expect you're jolly glad of that cloak in the winter.


	(Witchsmeller staggers around, on fire)


Harry: (finally noticing) Good lord!


	(Witchsmeller screams as he's burned to death. The flames around

	 Edmund, Percy and Baldrick go in reverse, then their bonds break.)


Edmund: Well done, Baldrick!


Percy: Yes, that was a close shave. (he runs his hand across his shaven head)

       Thank you, Baldrick.


	(Baldrick shrugs, baffled)



(In the castle, the King enters the anteroom feeling fine. He stretches and

 rests his sword on his shoulder. Queen is doing some knitting; Leia watches

 what's going on outside)


King: 'morning, my love.


Queen: Ah, 'morning, dear.


King: (chuckles happily) 'morning, Princess.


Leia: Good morning.


King: What's going on out there?


Leia: Well, Uncle Harry was going to burn Edmund alive, when (???) came



Queen: Darling, shh shh shh. (to King) Nothing, my dear -- it's all sorted

       out now.


King: Oh, good, good...


	(Queen winks and twitches her nose. Sparkles fly out of her eyes.

	 Leia looks on in surprise. The Black Adder logo comes from her

	 mouth as the closing theme begins.)



Cast in Order of Witchiness


The Great Grumbledook . . . . . . Rowan Atkinson

The Witchsmeller Pursuivant . . . Frank Finlay

The Witch Queen . . . . . . . . . Elspet Gray

Percy, A Witch  . . . . . . . . . Tim McInnerny

Baldrick, A Witch . . . . . . . . Tony Robinson

Ross, A Lord  . . . . . . . . . . Richard Murdoch

Angus, A Lord . . . . . . . . . . Valentine Dyall

Fife, A Lord  . . . . . . . . . . Peter Schofield

Soft, A Guard . . . . . . . . . . Stephen Frost

Anon, A Guard . . . . . . . . . . Mark Arden

Daft Ned, A Peasant . . . . . . . Perry Benson

Dim Cain, A Peasant . . . . . . . Bert Parnaby

Dumb Abel, A Peasant  . . . . . . Roy Evans

Dopey Jack, A Peasant . . . . . . Forbes Collins

Officer, An Officer . . . . . . . Patrick Duncan

Jane Firkettle  . . . . . . . . . Barbara Miller

Princess Leia . . . . . . . . . . Natasha King

Piers, A Yeoman . . . . . . . . . Howard Lew Lewis

Mrs. Field, A Goodwife  . . . . . Sarah Thomas

Mrs. Tyler, A Goodwife  . . . . . Louise Gold

Richard IV, A King  . . . . . . . Brian Blessed

Stuntman  . . . . . . . . . . . . Gareth Milne


Written by Richard Curtis and Rowan Atkinson

With additional dialogue by William Shakespeare


A BBC TV Production in association with The Seven Network, Australia





(that night, Edmund, Percy and Baldrick walk through the castle gate, still



Percy: I said he shouldn't have burnt that cat!


	(Edmund thwaps him on the cheek)




Back to top of Part 1

Part I Episode 6: The Black Seal

Forever devious, Edmund hatches a hapless, hilarious plot to dethrone the King...with the help of the Seven Most Evil Men in the Land.

The Black Adder I, Episode 6

The Black Seal


Intro: Many are the tales told of the Black Adder and of his faithful

henchmen Lord Percy Percy and Baldric son of Robin the Dung-Gatherer, but

none is told so oft, with so much hitting of heads with wonder and

repeating of exciting parts as this the final chapter in the book of The

Black Adder.

[Start Credits Roll]

Narrator: England 1498, St Junipers Day on which the King would lavish new

honours upon his kinfolk.

{Scene : The court of Richard IV}

King Richard : St Juniper once said, "By his loins shall ye know him and

by the length of his rod shall he be measured." The length of my rod is a

mystery to all but the Queen, and a thousand Turkish hoardes, but the

fruits of my loins are here for all to see. I have two sons, Henry and

.... another one.

	Step forward, Harry, Prince of Wales.

{Harry approaches and prostrates himself in front of his father}

KR: Harry, I hereby name thee, captain of the Guard, Grand Warden of the

Northern and Eastern Marches, Chief Lunatic of the Duchy of Gloucester,

Viceroy of Wales, Sheriff of Nottingham, Marquis of the Midlands, Lord

Hoe-Maker in ordinary and Harbinger of the Doomed-Rat.

	Step forward, the other one.

{Edmund approaches and prostrates himself on the step below Richard}

KR: Till now thy titles have been but few, Duke of Edinburgh and Warden of

the Royal Privvies.

Edmund Black Adder: Just so my lord.

KR: We thank thee Egbert for thy wok in Edinburgh, know now that we do

relieve thee of thy heavy task and give the Dukedom to our lord cousin

Hastings. (aside) Many Happy Returns Tom.

	Thus have I discharged the duties of Juniper. Chiswick, fresh

horses. We ride at once to rebellious Stoke where it is my sworn intent to

approach the city walls bare my broad buttocks and shout "Behold. I honour

thee most highly"

< Fanfare and cheers >

{Court empties leaving EBA, Percy and Baldric}

Percy: Well, it could have been worse my lord.

Baldric: Yeah, for a moment there I thought you were going to lose the


EBA {rising from the stairs} : No. It will not do.

P: No you're right my lord it won't.

EBA I must clear away the chaff from my life and let shine forth the true

wheat of greatness.

P {Looking at Baldric} : Do it at once my lord.

EBA: Very well. Percy ... you're dismissed from my service.

P {Points at Baldric}: Ha ha ha.... who me why ?

EBA: Because Percy, far from being a fit consort for a Prince of the

Realm, you would bore the leggings off a village idiot. You ride a horse

rather less well tan another horse would, your brain would make a grain of

sand look large and ungainly and the part of you that can't be mentioned,

I am reliably informed by women around the court, wouldn't be worth

mentioning even if it could be. If you put on a floppy hat and a furry

cod-piece you might just get by as a fool, but, since you wouldn't know a

joke if it got up and gave you a hair-cut, I doubt it. That is why you're


P: Oh I see.

EBA: And as for you Baldric...

B: Yes my lord ?

EBA: You're out too.

B: Fair enough.

Narrator: So Edmund spurned his friends and began his quest for glory.

{Scene : EBA on horse led by Baldric to castle gates}

EBA: Well, I expect you'll go back to shovelling dung in the gutter where I

found you ?

B: Nah, shouldn't think so.

EBA: No ?

B: No. It took me years to get that job, I'll probably be back milking pigs

or mucking out the leppers.

EBA: Really ?

B: Yeah, it'll be years before I get back to shovelling dung again.

{Edmund rides away. Baldric watches wiping a dew drop from his nose}

Caption : 100 yrds later

{Edmund nearly runs over an old man}

EBA: Get out of my way.

Old Man: Going on a journey my lord ?

EBA: No, I thought I'd stand here all day and talk to you.

OM: You'll be needing someone to tend your horse then ?

EBA: No and even if I did I wouldn't take you. I mean look at you. What is

your profession ?

{The Old man removes two handkerchiefs from his tunic and proceeds to

dance waving them about}

EBA: Oh my God a retired Morris Dancer, thats all I need. Well if you can keep

up you can come.

Caption: Thus did Edmund set forth into England ...

{Edmund mounted on black horse galloping across the countryside.}

Caption: ... with his rather irritating old servant.

{ The Old Man gallops past at about twice the speed of Edmund, mounted on

a donkey}

Caption: And so the Black Adder scoured the land to search out the six

other Most Evil Men in the kingdom.

{ An English country road through a wood. A lone rider approaches Edmund

and the Old Man who sit, waiting, in a clearing. Three black hooded riders

ambush the lone rider before he reaches the clearing}

Caption: Sir Wilfred Death.

EBA (retreating into the wood) : Oh my God an ambush!

Ambusher #1 (In an Irish accent): Sir Wilfred Death, your tyranny is now at

an end. Prepare to be hung by your codlings from that tree.

{ He points his sword towards a nearby tree}

Sir Wilfred Death: Never!

{ Edmund and the Old Man watch a melee from behind some trees, sounds of a

conflict ring out for about six seconds. Pan back to ambush site where Sir

Wilfred Death is walking away from the tree where the three riders hang,

groaning, upside down, strung by their codlings. Edmund approaches


EBA: Sir Wilfred Death.

WD: Edmund.

{They shake hands.}

EBA: I'm looking for some men to take over the kingdom.

WD: How many have you got so far ?

{Edmund holds up one finger. Wilfred replies with the reversed victory

sign invented by British archers at Agincourt to signify that they hadn't

been taken prisoner by the French, now commonly used as a visual


Caption: Three-Fingered Pete.

{ Two archers standing at the edge of the woods }

Three-Fingered Pete: So we are agreed. He who wins takes the horse

{He indicates to a nearby steed}

Both : Aye.

TFP: There is our mark. {Indicates an archery target} You shoot first.

{ The other bowman nocks an arrow and shoots hitting the target squarely

in the centre}

TFP: Thats good... so good in fact.... I'm going to have to ...

{ Three-Fingered Pete shoots the other archer dead}

TFP: ...cheat.

{Edmund and Wilfred have been watching in the distance}

EBA (Shouting): Three-Fingered Pete !

{Edmund and Wilfred approach. In close up Edmund holds three fingers aloft}

Caption: Guy de Glastonbury

{A carriage travels through the countryside, it is stopped by a lone

rider, Guy de Glastonbury}

Guy de Glastonbury: Good evening... and surrender. Your money or your life.

Merchant on carriage: Here take it {He gives Guy a purse} It's all the

money I have.

GdG: Thank you.

Merchant: Now let me pass.

GdG (Aside): Damn ! (To the merchant) I'm always doing this. Did I say

"Your money or your life" ?

Merchant: You did.

GdG: Sorry, slip of the tongue, your money and your life.

{Guy shoots the merchant with a single-handed crossbow}

GdG: Sorry.

{He walks his horse to the front of the carriage}

GdG (To Driver): Thanks Ned. See you Thursday.

{The driver waves as Guy trots away to where Edmund, Wilfred and Pete

await him}

WD: Guy.

GdG: Wilfred.

WD: Now what we need... is a real bastard.

TFP: Sean, the Irish Bastard.

{ A dark street in a town, a merchant walks nervously along it, glancing

behind him periodically. A shadowy figure follows him dodging in and out

of doorways so as to avoid being seen. The shadowy figure accidentally

stabs a house with his dagger.

 Two blind beggars stand to one side of the street with their begging

bowls. }

Beggar #1 [Kane]: Pity the blind kind sir.

{The merchant walks past ignoring the beggars. The shadowy figure, Sean,

the Irish Bastard scabbards his dagger and approaches the beggars

stealthily. Carefully Sean steals the content of the begging bowls and

slips back into the shadows}

Caption: Sean, the Irish Bastard.

Beggar #2 [Abel]: 'ere. Business is quiet this morning.

Kane: Aye, everyones gone to lunch I think.

{Wilfred, Edmund et al. block Seans escape up a stairway}

WD: Sean.

{ The five sit on horses atop a hill, Each member of the group is pictured

holding five fingers aloft. Edmund, Guy de Glastonbury, Sean the Irish

Bastard, Sir Wilfred Death, finally Three-Fingered Pete holds up three


{ A forest clearing. A monk, a farmer and a young girl stand with some


Farmer: Friar, I fear greatly for her chastity.

Friar Bellows: Alas, such is the way of the world. The sweetest rose too

often is... {He looks longingly at the girl} ... plucked too soon.

Caption: Friar Bellows.

Farmer: Yes... I wondered if you would take her while I'm gone ?

{ Friar Bellows takes another longing look at the girl}

FB: Yes. The answer is yes.

{Yet another lustful look}

FB (almost sinisterly): I shall.....

{ Behind some bushes the Friar and girl are lying with her dress around

her waist and the friar between her legs. The five watch with some


WD: Friar Bellows ?

{Sean, the Irish Bastard removes a cork from a bottle [FX of cork popping]}

WD: Doing the Lords work ?

FB: I was just ministering extreme unction.

{The rest laugh}

{ The six ride across the top of a rise}

EBA: Who shall be our seventh ? Wilfred ?

WD: Why, need I say more ? Jack

{[FX Deathly chord] The other five look worried}

GdG: Not mad bully-boy Jack, the grave robbing assassin of Aldwich ?

WD: No.

TFP: Then crazed animal Jack, the cattle rustling canibal from

Sutton-Coalfield ?

WD: Ha ha... no.

StIB: Then your mans sane Jack O'Hooligan the man-hating goat-murderer of

Dingle Bay.

WD: No.

FB: Surely not Canon Jack Smollett senior arch-deacon of the Diosces of St

Bothar, the entrail-eating heretic of Bath and Wells ?

WD: No. I'm talking of unspeakably violent Jack, the bull-buggering

beast-killer of no-fixed-abode.

{[An even deathlier chord] All look even more worried}

EBA: Are you sure he's the sort of chap we're looking for ?

WD: Yes, {He point down the hill} and here he comes.

{ A giant is walking up the hill towards them}

Caption: Jack Large.

{ A dwarf appears from behind the giant hitting at his legs. The giant

weathers this for a short while before picking the little fellow up to


Giant: What do you think you're doing ?

WD (Shouting from the hill): Are you with us Jack ?

Dwarf (Shouting back to Wilfred): Aye.

{The dwarf butts the giant knocking him cold and both fall to the ground}

{Edmund holds up seven fingers, he is giggling in the manner only he can}

{The six Most Evil Men are pictured around a central picture of Edmund

riding. Edmund falls off his horse into the snow}

{ The Old Man is sitting with seven horses and his donkey outside a pub. }

Jack Large (From inside the pub): ... so I kissed her on the left buttock.

{Drunken laughter issues from the pub. Inside the seven are seated around a

table covered with empty goblets and spilled wine and food. }

EBA (To Jack): So, tell me Jack what is your second name ?

JL: Large, Jack Large.

EBA (amused): Ha. Then in our band you shall be known as "Large Jack".

{Jack spits out his mouthful of beer and looks accusingly at Edmund}

JL: Why?

EBA (nervously): Well... because you are so little.

JL: Why not "Little Jack" then ?

EBA: Well, because "Large Jack" is more amusing.

Others: Is it?

EBA: Very well then "Little Jack".

{All rise weapons pointed at Edmund in a threatening manner}

JL: You wish to mock my size ?

EBA: No no no no no, no of course not.... erm... Innkeeper some more beer!

Six large beers...

[Cheers from Wilfred and co.]

{ He looks to Jack who is staring menacingly at him}

EBA: ... and another large beer.

[All cheer]

EBA: Let us then go on to the plan.

Others: The plan, the plan......

FB: But first a motto for our enterprise. "Blessed are the meek, for they

shall be slaughtered"

{The others rise, weapons drawn and make for the door cheering}

EBA: Wait you've forgotten the plan.

TFP: I thought that was the plan.

StIB: Lets get those meek bastards, now.

[All cheer]


WD: Who wants quiet ? I want chaos!!!

[All cheer again]

JL: And slaughter !!!

[More cheers]

TFP And flowers !!!!

Others: Yeah... huh?

TFP: Mercilessly crushed under-foot.


FB: Silence.

All (returning to their seats): Silence, ssshhh, silence.....

GdG: Silence, for the word of the Lord.

FB: For Christs sake lets hear the plan.

All: The plan, the plan....

EBA: Very well, the plan is simple.

WD (still carried away with the camaraderie): I thought it was cunning.

ALL: Down with the plan.

EBA: Well..... it's cunning in its simplicity. Tonight, I ride for home...

WD: I say strike now while the iron is hot.

EBA: But it isn't hot.

WD: Isn't it?

EBA: No it's just warming up, but, when it is hot, we will strike.

StIB: What ? Are we going to have to wait till summer ?

EBA: No, no when the iron is hot.

TFP: What iron?

EBA: Never mind, we are all agreed. I shall send for you all.

FB: How ?

EBA: Well... by a message, a sign.

GdG: What sort of sign ?

EBA: Well, something black probably.

JL: Black pudding ?

EBA: Not quite.

TFP: A messenger... with the Black Death perhaps ?

EBA: Yes, thats better.

FB: He means to kill us !

{All rise to attack Edmund again}

EBA: No, no, I mean a messenger with black.... hair.

WD: Ahhhh, a black-headed messenger.

All: Aye.

EBA: And when he comes to you, drop whatever you are doing and speed with

all haste to Jaspers tavern.

StIB: Ah, I know it well. How is old Jasper these days ?

TFP: Dead.

JL: How?

FB: I killed him.

[Cheers again]

EBA: From there I shall take you to the castle where we shall capture the

King, and the Queen and the Prince.

[More cheers]

EBA: and then I will say to them {He rises} "The kingdom of Albion is

ours, you are doomed to lives of exile. Get out!"

TFP: Exile?

EBA (Proudly): Yeeesss, exile. For life.

GdG: Why don't we just... kill them ?

EBA (upset): Well, I suppose we could kill them.

{All rise and make for the door shouting "Kill them"}

EBA: Wait till I sen the sign.

StIB: If I get a messenger with black-heads all over him, I'll kill the

ugly bastard.

WD {with dagger to Edmunds throat}: How do we know it isn't a trap ?

EBA: Because the Black Adder gives you his word.

WD:We want your word not this Black Adder fellows.

EBA (hurt): But I am the Black Adder.

WD: Oh I see.

EBA: And when all is done, the Black Seal shall rule England.


EBA {Climbing onto the table}: We few, we happy few, we band of ruthless



EBA: All for one....

Others: And each man for himself.

{They leave, cheering.}

{A woodland clearing at night, Edmund and the Old Man sit around a camp fire

near their steeds. Both are laughing}

OM: You're in a merry mood my lord.

EBA: Tes. No-one can stop me now.

OM: No-one ?

EBA: No no-one.... except perhaps.... no not even him.

OM: And who might that be my lord ?

EBA: Well there was a man, Philip of Bergundy, known to his enemies as,

"The Hawk". We were deadly childhood rivals, although,of course, in

those days he was known as "The Thrush", but no-ones heard of him for


	Well, come on, lets go we've got work to do.

OM (From out of shot)[His voice has deepened and is more booming]: Not so

fast Edinburgh. This "Hawk" did he look something like this ?

{ The old man transforms into a much larger man}

EBA: Erm... no, not really.

{Philip of Bergundy removes his false eye-brows}

EBA: Oh my God, Philip of Bergundy.

Philip of Bergundy: Known to my enemies as...


{He dons a peaked cap with a feather in it}

PoB: ..."The Hawk"

EBA: ...but your horse used to be a huge brown....

{Huge Brown horse enters shot}

EBA: Oh yes, thats the one. Well its been very good to see you... erm ... 


[Edmund makes to leave. Phillip of Bergundy steps on the toes of one of his 


PoB: This time not fast enough.

EBA: What do you want with me ?

PoB: I'll tell you later

{He hits Edmund on the head with a hammer}

[Manic Laughter]

{ A dungeon. Phillip forces Edmund into the cell}

PoB: I return at last after fifteen years.

EBA: And what have you been up to ?

PoB: Waiting, plotting, nurturing my hatred and planning my revenge.

EBA: Ah, so you've kept yourself busy.

PoB: Yes, fifteen years of living in France teaches a man to hate. Fifteen

years of wearing perfume, fifteen years of eating frogs, fifteen years of

saying "Pardon" and all because of you.

EBA: But surely the scenery.

PoB: I never went outside.I couldn't stand the smell.

EBA: What has all this got to do with me ?

PoB: Because Edmund its going to take you fifteen years... to die!

EBA: Fifteen years ?

PoB: Yes.

EBA: How ?

PoB: I think it would be more amusing if you found out for yourself. Let

us just say that it has something to do with snails.

{He opens a panel in the wall to reveal several snails and then starts to

leave the cell}

EBA: Oh my God, where are you going ?

PoB: Why to kill the royal family and claim the throne that isn't mine by


{He exits ... later Edmund is still in the cell}

EBA: Dear Lord, who made all the birds and the bees, and the snails,

presumably, please help me, a little animal in my dispair. I have been a

sinner but from now on I intend to follow the path of the Saints,

particularly the very religious ones. In the name of the Father, the Son

and of the Holy Ghost, Amen.

Voice (from aside): Amen.

EBA: What?

Voice: Amen I said. I'm sorry did I get it wrong? {A scruffy prisoner

approaches Edmund} I haven't heard that word in twenty years you see.

EBA: Who are you? I didn't realise I had company.

Prisoner: Oh "company", I haven't heard that word for twenty years either,

or "realise", I'd completely forgotten. "Realise".

EBA: Oh no, you're not mad are you ?

Mad Gerald: Yes I'm very mad thank you. Maaad. Thats a word I know. I say

that every day. I say, "Good morning Mad Gerald, how are you today ?", and

then I say, "I'm completely mad today thank you", and then I say, "Oh so

there's not much change there then is there Gerald?", and I say, "No, well

you'd be mad to expect any wouldn't you?", then I say, "But I am mad. I'm

Mad Gerald....".

EBA (cutting in): QUIET. Sh

MG: Ssshhh

EBA: Look this may seem a stupid question...

MG: Question yes.

EBA: ... but you wouldn't know if there's a way out of here would you?

MG: A way out. Ha ha ha ha ha. Ha ha ha ha ha ..... {He continues}

Caption: 12 Months Later.

{Edmund is sitting next to a skeleton, Mad Gerald is still laughing in the

distance getting nearer}

MG: .... Ha ha ha ha ha. Ha ha ha ha ha. "A way out" you say? I haven't

heard those words "A way out" for..... ooh.

EBA (In a tired voice): Twenty years ?

MG: Yes twenty years. Not like "Mr Rat". I'm always saying "Mr Rat".

EBA (absently): Who ?

MG: Mr Rat. I say "Good morning Mr Rat, how are you today" and he'll say

{pressing his nose} "meep meep meep".

{Gerald looks around for something to occupy him}

MG: Ah ha ha ha ha. Ah ha ha ha ha....

{Time passes. Edmund and Gerald are sitting on the floor of the cell}

MG: No you mustn't be rude about Mr Rat, he's my friend. Well, there's him

{points to rat} and there's Mr Key.

EBA: What?

MG: Mr Key {produces a key from his tunic}, I made him from my own teeth.

Good morning Mr Key.

{Edmund grabs the key from Mad Gerald and runs to the door. As he's

leaving Mad Gerald shouts from inside}

MG: Well close the bloody door!

{Edmund stops a cart driving along the road outside}

EBA: Stop, stop, where are you going ?

Cart Driver: I'll tell you where, wherever I can sell these six black

carrier pigeons I've got in the back, that's where.

EBA: Six black homing pigeons ?

CD: Well, mostly.

EBA: How much are they?

CD: Six shillings.

EBA (checking his pockets): Oh damn.

CD: But, I suppose, if you beat me and gagged me and tied me to that tree

you could have 'em for less.

EBA: Right.

{Edmund leaves the cart driver tied to the tree, gagged and steals the

cart. Edmund rides back to the castle where he releases the pigeons to

find the Black Seal members. Each member receives the message and drops

whatever he is doing.}

{Inside the castle}

PoB: By the striking of ten bells I shall claim the throne.

{One by one the six other Black Seal members appear threatening Phillip o

Bergundy and blocking any chances of his escape. There is a banging noise

from one of the corridor doors.}

PoB: Gentlemen, to whom do I owe this pleasure ?

{Edmund burst in unceremoniously, nearly tripping in the process}

EBA: To me Bergundy!

PoB: Edmund, I hadn't expected to see you again.

EBA: No. Dead men don't make social calls do they ? Prepare to die.

PoB: Wait. Let me say just one thing.

EBA: Which is.

PoB: If these men are what they seem to be, the six most evil men in the


EBA: Yes they are. Your last sentence please.

PoB: Then they've made a pretty damned peculiar choice for their leader,

haven't they my lord Warden of the Privvies.

EBA: What ?! You think they should have chosen you, Thrush ?

{The six laugh}

EBA: A man twisted by unbridled ambition ?

Six: Huh ?

EBA: A man haunted by insatiable greed ?

Six: Really ?

EBA: The most evil man in the world, you think they should have chosen you?

Six + PoB: Yes!

{They change position so that Edmund is now encircled by the Black Seal}

EBA: But he's a mindless killer.


EBA: He'll destroy the kingdom.


EBA: He murdered his own parents.

TFP: Well, who didn't. I certainly killed mine.

WD: And I killed mine.

FB (To Sean the Irish Bastard): And I killed yours.

StIB: Did yer ?

FB: Yes.

StIB: Good on yer father.

PoB: Are you with me then?

Six: Yes!

PoB (To Edmund): Prepare to die.

{They ready themselves to kill Edmund}

PoB: Wait. I have a more amusing method.

EBA: Amusing for whom I wonder.

PoB: Gentlemen.

{He uncovers a torture chair, the Black Seal applaud appreciatively}

{Edmund is placed in the chair}

PoB: In precisely one minute, the spike will go up your nethers

{He indicates a large spike below the seat}

PoB: The shears will cut off your ears.

{He toys with one of Edmunds ears that is between two blades of a pair of

shears on the chair}

EBA: Both of them ?

PoB: Yes. Then these axes will chop off your hands and I do not think we

need to go into the attributes of... the coddling grinder.

{He indicates a rotating set of blades between Edmunds thighs}

PoB: Then these feathers will tickle you under whats left of your arms and

that is the amusing part.

	Gentlemen, let us go and slaughter the Royal Family. God Save the


Six: Cos nobody else will.

{They leave. Outside the room they approach two serving maids (One of whom

has a beard...). The maids have trays with goblets of wine on them.}

PoB: Stop. First let us relieve these wenches of their delightful burden

and drink a toast to our enterprise. May good thrive...

Six: Over our dead bodies.

{ They each drink a goblet full of wine then walk off. About five yards

down the corridor they all grab their heads, fall over, lie still for a

few seconds before their legs jerk and they lie still again.

	Sean the Irish Bastard gets up and walks back to the maids}

StIB: It's got a bit of a sting in its tail.

{ He takes the last goblet, drinks it, walks off, grabs his head, falls

over, lies still, twitches and finally dies.

	The serving wenches remove their hoods to reveal that they are in

fact Percy and Baldric. They leap in the air cheering}

Percy and Baldric: Hooray.

{ In the distance we hear Edmund}

EBA: Aaaargghh. Woooaaarrggh. Eeeek. Nya ha ha.

{ Scene: The court are assembled around Edmunds death bed. King Richard

the Fourth, the Queen and Prince Harry stand at Edmunds bedside. Edmund is

heavily bandaged and shows signs of bleeding from the ears ,fore-head and


Queen (Softly): Oh Edmund, Edmund.

Harry (Slightly louder): Edmund ?

King Richard (In his usual manner): EDMUND!!!!!!

{Edmunds eyes open}

KR: He lives !

{The court cheers. There is a flash of Percy and Baldric sitting talking

in another chamber}

EBA: Father, you called me Edmund.

KR: Oh... Sorry, Edgar, how are you ?

EBA: Not so well. Harry what do you think my chances are ?

H: Oh good, good.

Q: He'll live ?

H: Oh no sorry, I thought you meant your chances of going to heaven.

EBA (Wearily): Oh damn.

KR: Never mind my son, your body may be mutilated beyond recognition but

your spirit will live forever. (To the court) My Lords...

}{Another flash to Percy and Baldric}


}Baldric: What did you say ?


KR: I give you Edgar.

}{Another flash. Percy and Baldric are running panicking towards the court}


}B: I told you to poison the Black Seals goblets not the whole batch!


The Court: Edgar.

{Edmund taps his fathers leg. Richard bends to listen to his son}

KR: What is it ?

{Edmund whispers to him}

KR (Holding his goblet aloft): The Black Dagger.

Court: The Black Dagger.

{Everyone drinks}

EBA (Quietly): Adder.

KR: May his name last as long as our dynasty.

{All the members of the court grab their heads in unison. They all fall to

the ground and lie still. After a short time they all twitch, then they

are still again.}

EBA: Good Lord.

}{Percy and Baldric are still running}

EBA: I wonder if it was the wine.

{He lifts his goblet to his lips and takes a sip.}

EBA: No, seems perfectly alright to me. And now at last I shall be k.....

{He grabs his head with his stumps, lies still, twitches and lies still



Song (woman in soprano):

	So now the way of sin is paved,

		The blade has got the Black Seal graved. [Pronounced grave-ed]

	The only sound across the glade,

		Is Edmund pushing up the daisies.

	Black Adder, Black Adder, 

		A shame about the plan.

	Black Adder, Black Adder,

		Farewell you horrid man.

Cast in order of disappearance:

Murdered Lord:		John Carlisle.

Cain, a blind beggar:	Bert Parnaby.

Abel, a blind beggar:	Roy Evans.

Trusting Father:		Forbes Collins.

Person of unrestricted growth:

				Des Webb.

Old Man:			John Barrard.

Mad Gerald:			Himself.		[Actually Rik Mayall]

Pigeon Vendor:		Perry Bevon.

Friar Bellows:		Paul Brooke.

Jack Large:			Big Mick.

Three-Fingered Pete:	Roger Slomon.

Guy de Glastonbury:	Patrick Malahide.

Sir Wilfred Death:	John Hallam.

The Hawk:			Patrick Allen.

Sean the Irish Bastard:	Ron Cook.

Harry:			Robert East

Queen:			Elsbeth Gray.

Richard, IV:		Brian Blessed.

The Black Adder:		Rowan Atkinson.

Baldric:			Tony Robinson.

Percy:			Tim McInnery.

Song by Howard Goodall 				[Note: Not Phillip Pope]

(Baldric and Percy run down the hallway, thrust open the door, and simultaneously yell)


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