Imagens das páginas

him, as 'a comes by; and do but mark the countenance that he will give me.

PIST. God bless thy lungs, good knight.

FAL. Come here, Pistol; stand behind me.—O, if I had had time to have made new liveries, I would have bestowed the thousand pound I borrowed of you. [To SHALLOW.] But 'tis no matter; this poor show doth better: this doth infer the zeal I had to see him.

SHAL. It doth so.

FAL. It shows my earnestness of affection.
SHAL. It doth so.

FAL. My devotion.

SHAL. It doth, it doth, it doth 2.

FAL. As it were, to ride day and night; and not to deliberate, not to remember, not to have patience to shift me.

SHAL. It is most certain.

FAL. But to stand stained with travel3, and sweating with desire to see him: thinking of nothing else; putting all affairs else in oblivion; as if there were nothing else to be done, but to see him.

PIST. "Tis semper idem, for absque hoc nihil est : "Tis all in every part **.

* Quartos, 'Tis in every part.

2 It doth, it doth, it doth.] The two little answers which are given to Pistol in the old copy, are transferred by Sir Thomas Hanmer to Shallow. The repetition of it doth suits Shallow best.


In the quarto, Shallow's first speech in this scene, as well as these two, is erroneously given to Pistol. The editors of the folio corrected the former, but overlooked these. They likewise, in my apprehension, overlooked an error in the end of Falstaff's speech, below, though they corrected one in the beginning of it. See note 4. MALONE.



- to stand STAINED with travel,] So, in King Henry IV. Part I.:


"Stain'd with the variation of each soil,
"Betwixt that Holmedon and this seat of ours." MALONE,
'Tis all in every part.] The sentence alluded to is:

SHAL. 'Tis so, indeed.

PIST. My knight, I will inflame thy noble liver,

And make thee rage.

Thy Doll, and Helen of thy noble thoughts,
Is in base durance, and contagious prison;
Haul'd thither

By most mechanical and dirty hand :

Rouze up revenge from ebon den with fell Alecto's


For Doll is in; Pistol speaks nought but truth.
FAL. I will deliver her.

[Shouts within, and the trumpets sound. PIST. There roar'd the sea, and trumpet-clangor sounds.

" "Tis all in all, and all in every part."

And so doubtless it should be read. 'Tis a common way of expressing one's approbation of a right measure to say, " 'tis all in all." To which this fantastick character adds, with some humour, "and all in every part:" which, both together, make up the philosophick sentence, and complete the absurdity of Pistol's phraseology. WARBURTON.

I strongly suspect that these words belong to Falstaff's speech. They have nothing of Pistol's manner. In the original copy in quarto, the speeches in this scene are all in confusion. The two speeches preceding this, which are jumbled together, are given to Shallow, and stand thus: "Sh. It is best certain but to stand stained with travel," &c.

The allusion, if any allusion there be, is to the description of the soul. So, in Nosce Teipsum, by Sir John Davies, 4to. 1599: "Some say, she's all in all, and all in every part."

Again, in Drayton's Mortimeriados, 4to. 1596:

"And as his soul possesseth head and heart,

"She's all in all, and all in every part." MALONE.

In The Phoenix Nest, &c. 4to. 1593, we find, p. 20: "Tota in toto, et tota in qualibet parte." RITSON.

In my opinion, this speech accords but little with the phraseology of Falstaff; and, on the contrary, agrees well with that of Pistol, who (as Moth in Love's Labour's Lost says of Holo

fernes) appears to “ have been at a great feast of languages, and stolen the scraps." See his concluding words in the scene before us. STEEVENS.

Enter King and his Train, the Chief Justice among them.

FAL. God save thy grace, king Hal! my royal Hal!

PIST. The heavens thee guard and keep, most royal imp of fame"!

FAL. God save thee, my sweet boy!

KING. My lord chief justice, speak to that vain


CH. JUST. Have you your wits? know you what 'tis you speak?

FAL. My king! my Jove'! I speak to thee my heart!

5 God save thy grace, king Hal!] A similar scene occurs in the anonymous Henry V. Falstaff and his companions address the King in the same manner, and are dismissed as in this play of Shakspeare. STEEVENS.

6 most royal IMP of fame!] The word imp is perpetually used by Ulpian Fulwell, and other ancient writers, for progeny: And were it not thy royal impe "Did mitigate our pain-."

Here Fulwell addresses Anne Boleyn, and speaks of the young Elizabeth. Churchyard also calls Edward VI. "impe of grace." Again, in The Battle of Alcazar, 1594 :

[ocr errors]

Amurath, mighty emperor of the east, "That shall receive the imp of royal race."

Again, in Fuimus Troes, 1633:


from hence I bring

"A pair of martial imps."

Imp-yn is a Welsh word, and primitively signifies a sprout, a sucker. So, in the tragedy of Darius, 1603:

"Like th' ancient trunk of some disbranched tree
"Which Eol's rage hath to confusion brought,
"Disarm'd of all those imps that sprung from me,


Unprofitable stock, I serve for nought."

Again, in Thomas Newton's Herball to the Bible, 8vo. 1587, there is a chapter on "shrubs, shootes, slippes, graffes, sets, sprigges, boughs, branches, twigs, yoong imps, sprayes, and buds." STEEVENS.

7 My king! my Jove!] It appears, from many passages both

KING. I know thee not, old man: Fall to thy


How ill white hairs become a fool, and jester!
I have long dream'd of such a kind of man,
So surfeit-swell'd, so old, and so profane ;
But, being awake, I do despise my dream.
Make less thy body, hence, and more thy grace;
Leave gormandizing; know, the grave doth gape
For thee thrice wider than for other men:-
Reply not to me with a fool-born jest ';
Presume not that I am the thing I was:

For heaven doth know, so shall the world perceive,

in our author's plays and poems, that he had diligently read the earlier pieces of Daniel. When he wrote the speech before us, he perhaps remembered these lines in Daniel's Complaint of Rosamond, 1594:

"Doost thou not see, how that thy king, thy Jove,


Lightens forth glory on thy dark estate?


8- profane ;] In our author it often signifies love of talk, without the particular idea now given it. So, in Othello: " Is he not a profane and very liberal counsellor ?" JOHNSON.



hence,] i. e. henceforward, from this time, in the future. STEEVENS.

know, the grave doth gape

For thee thrice wider than for other men :—

Reply not to me with a fool-born jest ;] Nature is highly touched in this passage. The King having shaken off his vanities, schools his old companion for his follies with great severity: he assumes the air of a preacher, bids him fall to his prayers, seek grace, and leave gormandizing. But that word unluckily presenting him with a pleasant idea, he cannot forbear pursuing it. "Know, the grave doth gape for thee thrice wider," &c. and is just falling back into Hal, by an humorous allusion to Falstaff's bulk; but he perceives it immediately, and fearing Sir John should take the advantage of it, checks both himself and the knight, with


[ocr errors]

Reply not to me with a fool-born jest ; And so resumes the thread of his discourse, and goes moralizing on to the end of the chapter. Thus the poet copies nature with great skill, and shows us how apt men are to fall back into their old customs, when the change is not made by degrees, and brought into a habit, but determined of at once, on the motives of honour, interest, or reason. WARBURTON..

That I have turn'd away my former self;
So will I those that kept me company.
When thou dost hear I am as I have been,
Approach me; and thou shalt be as thou wast,
The tutor and the feeder of my riots:
Till then, I banish thee, on pain of death,—
As I have done the rest of my misleaders,-
Not to come near our person by ten mile2.

2 Not to come near our person by ten mile.] Mr. Rowe observes, that many readers lament to see Falstaff so hardly used by his old friend. But if it be considered, that the fat knight has never uttered one sentiment of generosity, and with all his power of exciting mirth, has nothing in him that can be esteemed, no great pain will be suffered from the reflection that he is compelled to live honestly, and maintained by the King, with a promise of advancement when he shall deserve it.

I think the poet more blameable for Poins, who is always represented as joining some virtues with his vices, and is therefore treated by the Prince with apparent distinction, yet he does nothing in the time of action; and though after the bustle is over he is again a favourite, at last vanishes without notice. Shakspeare certainly lost him by heedlessness, in the multiplicity of his characters, the variety of his action, and his eagerness to end the play. JOHNSON.

The dismission of Falstaff was founded on an historical fact. Stowe says, that "King Henry, after his coronation, called unto him all those young lords and gentlemen that were the followers of his young acts, to every one of whom he gave rich gifts; and then commanded, that as many as would change their manners, as he intended to do, should abide with him in his court; and to all that would persevere in their former like conversation, he exgave press commandment, upon pain of their heads, never after that day to come in his presence." STEEVENS.

This circumstance was originally mentioned by Hall, and is thus recorded by Holinshed, who was certainly Shakspeare's historian: 66 Immediately after that he was invested kyng, and had receyved the crowne, he determined with himselfe to putte upon him the shape of a new man, turning insolence and wildness into gravitie and sobernesse : and whereas he had passed his youth in wanton pastime and riotous misorder, with a sorte of misgoverned mates, and unthriftie playfeers, he now banished them from his presence, (not unrewarded nor yet unpreferred,) inhibiting them upon a great payne, not once to approche, lodge or sojourne within ten miles of his courte or mansion: and in their places he elected

« AnteriorContinuar »