Imagens das páginas

After young Arthur, claim this land for mine;
And, now it is half-conquer'd, must I back,
Because that John hath made his peace with

Rome ?
Am I Rome's slave? What penny hath Rome

What men provided, what munition sent,
To underprop this action ? is't not I,
That undergo this charge ? who else but I,
And such as to my claim are liable,
Sweat in this business, and maintain this war ?
Have I not heard these islanders shout out,
Vive le roy! as I have bank'd their towns & ?
Have I not here the best cards for the game, ,
To win this easy match play'd for a crown?
And shall I now give o'er the yielded set ?
No, no, on my soul', it never shall be said.

Pand. You look but on the outside of this work.

LEW. Outside or inside, I will not return
Till my attempt so much be glorified
As to my ample hope was promised
Before I drew this gallant head of war",

- as I have BANK'D THEIR Towns?] “Bank'd their towns may mean, “throw up entrenchments before them.'

The old play of King John, however, leaves this interpretation extremely disputable. It appears from thence that these salutations were given to the Dauphin as he sailed along the banks of the river. This, I suppose, Shakspeare calls banking the towns.

from the hollow holes of Thamesis
“ Echo apace replied, Vive le roi !
“ From thence along the wanton rolling glade,

“ To Troynovant, your fair metropolis." We still say to coast and to flank; and to bank has no less of propriety, though it is not reconciled to us by modern usage.

STEEVENS. 9 No, on my soul,] In the old copy, no, injuriously to the measure, is repeated. STEEVENS.

Drew this gallant head of war,] i. e. assembled it, drew it out into the field. So, in King Henry IV. Part I. :

“ And that his friends by deputation could not
" So soon be drawn."



[ocr errors]

And culld these fiery spirits from the world,
To outlook 2 conquest, and to win renown
Even in the jaws of danger and of death.-

[Trumpet sounds. What lusty trumpet thus doth summon us ?

Enter the Bastard, attended. Bast. According to the fair play of the world, Let me have audience ; I am sent to speak :: My holy lord of Milan, from the king I come, to learn how you have dealt for him; And, as you answer, I do know the scope And warrant limited unto my tongue.

Pand. The Dauphin is too wilful-opposite, And will not temporize with my entreaties; He flatly says, he'll not lay down his arms.

Bast. By all the blood that ever fury breath'd, The youth says well :-Now hear our English king; For thus his royalty doth speak in me. He is prepar'd; and reason too', he should : This apish and unmannerly approach, This harness'd masque, and unadvised revel, This unhair'd sauciness, and boyish troops *,


- outlook - i. e. face down, bear down by a show of magnanimity. In a former scene of this play, p. 343, we have :

outface the brow
“ Of bragging horror." STEEVENS.
and reason too,] Old copy-to.

Corrected by the editor of the second folio. MALONE.

4 This Unhair'd sauciness, and boyish troops,] The printed copies-unheard; but unheard is an epithet of very little force or meaning here; besides, let us observe how it is coupled. Faulconbridge is sneering at the Dauphin's invasion, as an unadvised enterprise, savouring of youth and indiscretion; the result of childishness, and unthinking rashness; and he seems altogether to dwell on this character of it, by calling his preparation “boyish troops, dwarfish war, pigmy arms,” &c. which, according to my emendation, sort very well with unhaird, i. e. unbearded sauciness.

THEOBALD. Hair was formerly written hear. Hence the mistake might

The king doth smile at; and is well prépar'd
To whip

this dwarfish war, these pigmy arms, From out the circle of his territories. That hand, which had the strength, even at your

door, To cudgel you, and make you take the hatch"; To dive, like buckets, in concealed wells 6; To crouch in litter of your stable planks ; To lie, like pawns, lock'd up in chests and trunks; To hug with swine; to seek sweet safety out In vaults and prisons; and to thrill, and shake, Even at the crying of your nation's crow",

[ocr errors]

easily happen. Faulconbridge has already, in this Act, p. 344, exclaimed:

“ Shall a beardless boy,

“A cocker'd silken wanton, brave our fields ? " So, in the fifth Act of Macbeth, Lenox tells Cathness that the English army is near, in which, he says, there are

many unrough youths, that even now
“ Protest their first of manhood,"
Again, in King Henry V.:

“ For who is he, whose chin is but enrich'd
“ With one appearing hair, that will not follow
“ These cull'd and choice-drawn cavaliers to France ?"

MALONE. take the hatch ;] To take the hatch, is to leap the hatch. To take a hedge or a ditch is the hunter's phrase. Chapman has more than once employed it in his version of Homer. Thus, in the 22d Iliad :

take the town ; retire, dear son," &c. Again, ibid :

and take the town, not tempting the rude field." εισερχεο τείχος,--Τείχεος εντός ιών.

STEEVENS. So, in Massinger's Fatal Dowry, 1632 :

“I look about and neigh, take hedge and ditch,

“ Feed in my neighbour's pastures." Malone. 6 - in conceALED wells ;] i believe our author, with his accustomed licence, used concealed for concealing ; wells that afforded concealment and protection to those who took refuge there. MALONE.

“ Concealed wells" are wells in concealed or obscure situations; viz. in places secured from public notice. Steevens.

7- of your nation's crow,] Mr. Pope, and some of the sub

Thinking his voice an armed Englishman ;-
Shall that victorious hand be feebled here,
That in your chambers gave you chastisement ?
No: Know, the gallant monarch is in arms;
And like an eagle o'er his aiery towers ®,
To souse annoyance that comes near his nest.-
And you degenerate, you ingrate revolts,
You bloody Neroes, ripping up the womb
Of your dear mother England, blush for shame:
For your own ladies, and pale-visag'd maids,
Like Amazons, come tripping after drums;
Their thimbles into armed gauntlets change,
Their neelds to lances ', and their gentle hearts
To fierce and bloody inclination.
Lew. There end thy brave, and turn thy face in

We grant, thou canst outscold us : fare thee well;
We hold our time too precious to be spent
With such a brabbler.

Give me leave to speak.


sequent editors, read our nation's crow; not observing that the Bastard is speaking of John's atchievements in France. He likewise reads, in the next line-his voice ; but this voice, the voice or caw of the French crow, is sufficiently clear. MALONE.

your nation's crow," i. e. at the crowing of a cock ; gallus meaning both a cock and a Frenchman. DOUCE.

like an eagle o'er his Alery towers,] An aiery is the nest of an eagle. So, in King Richard III. :

“Our aiery buildeth in the cedar's top.” STEEVENS. 9 Their neeLDS to lances,] So, in A Midsummer-Night's Dream :

“ Have with our neelds created both one flower." Fairfax has the same contraction of the word-needle.

STEEVENS. In the old copy the word is contractedly written needls, but it was certainly intended to be pronounced neelds, as it is frequently written in old English books. Many dissyllables are used by Shakspeare and other writers as monosyllables, as whether, spirit, &c. though they generally appear at length in the original editions of these plays. MALONE. VOL. XV.

2 A

Bast. No, I will speak.

We will attend to neither :-
Strike up the drums; and let the tongue of war
Plead for our interest, and our being here.
Bast. Indeed, your drums, being beaten, will

cry out; And so shall you, being beaten : Do but start An echo with the clamour of thy drum, And even at hand a drum is ready brac’d, That shall reverberate all as loud as thine; Sound but another, and another shall, As loud as thine, rattle the welkin's ear, And mock the deep-mouth'd thunder: for at hand (Not trusting to this halting legate here, Whom he hath us'd rather for sport than need,) Is warlike John; and in his forehead sits A bare-ribb'd death”, whose office is this day To feast upon whole thousands of the French.

Lew. Strike up our drums, to find this danger


Bast. And thou shalt find it, Dauphin, do not doubt.



The Same. A Field of Battle.

Alarums. Enter King John and HUBERT.
K. John. How goes the day with us? O, tell me,

Hub. Badly, I fear : How fares your majesty ?
K. John. This fever, that hath troubled me so


9 A bare-ribb’d death,] So, in our author's Rape of Lucrece: “ Shows me a bare-bon'd death by time outworn.”


« AnteriorContinuar »