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P. 468. (110) “confess'd but even non" The quarto of 1622 has “confest it euen now,"—The folio, and the quarto of 1630, have “confest it but euen none."
P. 469. (111)
" of one whose hand, Like the base Indian, threr a pearl away
Richer than all his tribe;" So the quartos.— The folio has
“ Of one, whose hand (Like the base Iudean) thren," &c.Malone adopted “Júdean,” thinking that “ the word 'tribe' is strongly in favour of the reading :" but Boswell observes; “ The word tribe is not, as Mr. Malone seemed to suppose, peculiarly applicable to the Jews. It meant in Shakespeare's time, as we learn from Cokeram, a kindred, and it is constantly used at this day in speaking of the Indians.” [It was rather unnecessary to refer to Cokeram, since, in the present play, Iago says,
“Good heaven, the souls of all my tribe defend
From jealousy!" p. 421. Boswell proceeds] “The Jews are not in general described as willing to throw away what is valuable; and it is not likely that Shakespeare would allude to an anecdote of a single individual, of which perhaps none of his auditors had ever heard; but in our author's time, when voyages of discovery to America were common, each putter out of fire for one was probably stimulated by a description of the riches he might find there, and of the facility with which the Indians base, on account of their ignorance, would part with them. I will only add, that two succeeding poets have given the Indians the same character;
“So the unskilfull Indian those bright gems
Habington's Castara,—To Castara weeping. So also in The Woman's Conquest, by Sir Edward Howard;
"Behold my queen-
Its ralue.'” The latter part of the above note (the most valuable of Boswell's contributions to the illustration of Shakespeare) proves, I think, decidedly, that Othello alludes to no particular story, but to “ the Indian" as generally described : and to the passages just cited, the following one may be added ;
“ The wretched Indian spurnes the golden ore."
Drayton's Legend of Matilda, sig. Ff 7,-Poems, 8vo, n. d.Walker (Crit. Exam. &c. vol. iii. p. 292) says, “ Indian,' certainly;" and quotes the preceding line of Drayton, which I had long before adduced in my Remarks on Mr. Collicr's and Mr. Knight's editions of Shakespeare.
P. 469. (112)
6 med'cinable" So the folio (" Medicinable”).—The quartos have "medicinall."
P. 469. (113)
“[Stabs himself with a dagger. The quartos have “He stabs himselfe.”—The folio has no stage-direction here.
In p. 466 Othello, on offering to stab Iago, is disarmed by Montano; but he has “another weapon-a sword of Spain,” ibid. Of that second weapon, after wounding Iago, he is also deprived : this is shown, not only by the exclamation of Lodovico, “ Wrench his sword from him," p. 467, but by the remark of Cassio, “ This did I fear, but thought he had no weapon," p. 469. The instrument he now uses must therefore have been a dagger which was concealed about his person.