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And here ye lie baiting of bumbards,1 when
Ye should do service. Hark, the trumpets sound;
They are come already from the christening:
Go, break among the press, and find a way out
To let the troop pass fairly; or I 'll find

A Marshalsea, shall hold you play these two months.
Port. Make way there for the princess.

Man. You great fellow, stand close up, or I'll make your head ake.

Port. You i' the camblet, get up o' the rail;2 I'll pick you o'er the pales else.3 [Exeunt.


The Palace.

Enter Trumpets, sounding; then two Aldermen, Lord Mayor, Garter, CRANMER, Duke of NORFOLK, with his Marshal's Staff, Duke of SUFFOLK, two Noblemen bearing great standing-bowl.5 for the christening gifts; then four Noblemen bearing a canopy, under which the Duchess of NORFOLK, godmother, bearing the child richly habited in a mantle, &c. Train borne by a Lady: then follows the Marchioness of Dorset, the other godmother, and Ladies. The Troop pass once about the stage, and Garter speaks.

Gart. Heaven, from thy endless goodness, send pros


1- here ye lie baiting of bumbards,] A bumbard is an alebarrel; to bait bumbards is to tipple, to lie at the spigot. Johnson. So, in Woman's a Weather cock, 1612: "She looks like a black bombard with a pint pot waiting upon it."

See The Tempest, Vol. II, p. 66, n. 8.

2 - get up o' the rail;] We must rather read-get up off the rail,-or,-get off the rail. M. Mason.


I'll pick you o'er the pales else.] To pick is to pitch. "To pick a dart," Cole renders, jaculor. DICT. 1679. See a note on Coriolanus, Act I, sc. i, where the word is, as I conceive, rightly spelt. Here the spelling in the old copy is peck. Malone.

To pick and to pitch were anciently synonymous. So, in Stubbes's Anatomy of Abuses, 1595, p. 138: "- to catch him on the hip, and to picke him on his necke." Steevens.



4 The Palace.] At Greenwich, where, as we learn from Hall, fo. 217, this procession was made from the church of the Friars. Reed.

standing-bowls - i. e. bowls elevated on feet or pedestals. Steevens.

perous life, long, and ever happy, to the high and mighty princess of England, Elizabeth!

Flourish. Enter King, and Train.

Cran. [kneeling] And to your royal grace, and the good queen,

My noble partners, and myself, thus pray ;-
All comfort, joy, in this most gracious lady,
Heaven ever laid up to make parents happy,
May hourly fall upon ye!

K. Hen.

What is her name?


K. Hen.

Thank you, good lord archbishop;


Stand up, lord.

[The King kisses the Child. With this kiss take my blessing: God protect thee! Into whose hands I give thy life.



K. Hen. My noble gossips, ye have been too prodigal : I thank ye heartily; so shall this lady, When she has so much English.


Let me speak, sir,
For Heaven now bids me; and the words I utter
Let none think flattery, for they 'll find them truth.
This royal infant, (heaven still move about her!)
Though in her cradle, yet now promises
Upon this land a thousand thousand blessings,
Which time shall bring to ripeness: She shall be
(But few now living can behold that goodness)
A pattern to all princes living with her,
And all that shall succeed: Sheba was never
More covetous of wisdom, and fair virtue,
Than this pure soul shall be: all princely graces,
That mould up such a mighty piece as this is,
With all the virtues that attend the good,

Shall still be doubled on her: truth shall nurse her,
Holy and heavenly thoughts still counsel her:
She shall be lov'd, and fear'd: Her own shall bless her:
Her foes shake like a field of beaten corn,

Thank you, good lord archbishop;] I suppose the word archbishop should be omitted, as it only serves to spoil the measure. Be it remembered also that archbishop, throughout this play, is accented on the first syllable. Steevens.

And hang their heads with sorrow: Good grows with her:

In her days, every man shall eat in safety
Under his own vine," what he plants; and sing
The merry songs of peace to all his neighbours:
God shall be truly known; and those about her
From her shall read the perfect ways of honour,&
And by those claim their greatness, not by blood.
[Nor shall this peace sleep with her: But as when


every man shall eat in safety

Under his own vine,] The original thought is borrowed from the 4th chapter of the first Book of Kings: “Every man dwelt safely under his vine." Steevens.

A similar expression is in Micah, iv, 4: "But they shall sit every man under his vine, and under his fig tree, and none shall make them afraid." Reed.

8 From her shall read the perfect ways of honour,] The old copy reads-way. The slight emendation now made is fully justified by the subsequent line, and by the scriptural expression which our author probably had in his thoughts: "Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace." Malone.

Thus, already in this play:


Wolsey, that once trod the ways of glory --." Steevens. By those, in the last line, means by those ways, and proves that we must read ways, instead of way, in the line preceding. Shall read from her, means, shall learn from her. M. Mason.

9 [Nor shall this peace sleep with her : &c.] These lines, to the interruption by the King, seem to have been inserted at some revisal of the play, after the accession of King James. If the passage, included in crotchets, be left out, the speech of Cranmer proceeds in a regular tenour of prediction, and continuity of sentiments; but, by the interposition of the new lines, he first celebrates Elizabeth's successor, and then wishes he did not know that she was to die; first rejoices at the consequence, and then laments the cause. Our author was at once politick and idle; he resolved to flatter James, but neglected to reduce the whole speech to propriety; or perhaps intended that the lines inserted should be spoken in the action, and omitted in the publication, if any publication was ever in his thoughts. Mr. Theobald has made the same observation. Johnson.

I agree entirely with Dr. Johnson with respect to the time when these additional lines were inserted. I suspect they were added in 1613, after Shakspeare had quitted the stage, by that hand which tampered with the other parts of the play so much, as to have rendered the versification of it of a different colour from all the other plays of Shakspeare. Malone.

If the reviver of this play (or tamperer with it, as he is styled by Mr. Malone,) had so much influence over its numbers as to

The bird of wonder dies, the maiden phoenix,
Her ashes new create another heir,

As great in admiration as herself;

So shall she leave her blessedness to one,

(When heaven shall call her from this cloud of darkness)

Who, from the sacred ashes of her honour,

Shall star-like rise, as great in fame as she was,
And so stand fix'd: Peace, plenty, love, truth, terror,
That were the servants to this chosen infant,
Shall then be his, and like a vine grow to him;
Wherever the bright sun of heaven shall shine,
His honour and the greatness of his name
Shall be, and make new nations:1 He shall flourish,
And, like a mountain cedar, reach his branches
To all the plains about him :—————— -Our children's children
Shall see this, and bless heaven.

K. Hen.

Thou speakest wonders.] Cran. She shall be, to the happiness of England, An aged princess;2 many days shall see her,

have entirely changed their texture, he must be supposed to have new woven the substance of the whole piece; a fact almost incredible.

The lines under immediate consideration were very probably furnished by Ben Jonson; for

"When heaven shall call her from this cloud of darkness," (meaning the "dim spot" we live in,) is a seeming imitation of the following passage in the 9th Book of Lucan (a poet from whose stores old Ben has often enriched himself):

[blocks in formation]

1 His honour and the greatness of his name

Shall be, and make new nations:] On a picture of this contemptible king, which formerly belonged to the great Bacon, and is now in the possession of Lord Grimston, he is styled imperii Atlantici conditor. The year before the revival of this play (1612) there was a lottery for the plantation of Virginia. These lines probably allude to the settlement of that colony. Malone.

2 She shall be, to the happiness of England,

An aged princess;] The transition here from the complimentary address to King James the First is so abrupt, that it seems obvious to me, that compliment was inserted after the accession of that prince. If this play was wrote, as in my opinion it was, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, we may easily determine where Cranmer's eulogium of that princess concluded. I make no question but the poet rested here:

And yet no day without a deed to crown it.
'Would I had known no more! but she must die,
She must, the saints must have her; yet a virgin,
A most unspotted lily shall she pass

To the ground, and all, the world shall mourn her.
K. Hen. O lord archbishop,

Thou hast made me now a man; never, before
This happy child, did I get any thing:
This oracle of comfort has so pleas'd me,

That, when I am in heaven, I shall desire

To see what this child does, and praise my Maker.-
I thank ye all,-To you, my good lord mayor,
And your good brethren,3 I am much beholden;
I have receiv'd much honour by your presence,
And ye shall find me thankful. Lead the way, lords ;—
Ye must all see the queen, and she must thank
She will be sick else. This day, no man think
He has business at his house; for all shall stay,
This little one shall make it holiday.



And by those claim their greatness, not by blood. All that the bishop says after this, was an occasional homage paid to her successor, and evidently inserted after her demise. How naturally, without this insertion, does the king's joy and satisfactory reflection upon the bishop's prophecy, come in!

King. Thou speakest wonders. O lord archbishop,
Thou'st made me now a man. Never, before
This happy child, did I get any thing: &c.

Whether the king would so properly have made this inference, upon hearing that a child of so great hopes should die without issue, is submitted to judgment. Theobald.


3 And your good brethren,] Old copy-you. But the aldermen were never called brethren to the king. The top of the nobility are but cousins and counsellors. Dr. Thirlby, therefore, rightly advised: And your good brethren,

i. e. the lord mayor's brethren, which is properly their style.


4 The play of Henry the Eighth is one of those which still keeps possession of the stage by the splendour of its pageantry. The coronation, about forty years ago, drew the people together in multitudes for a great part of the winter.* Yet pomp is not the only merit of this play. The meek sorrows and virtuous distress of Katharine have furnished some scenes, which may be justly numbered among the greatest efforts of tragedy. But the genius of Shakspeare comes in and goes out with Katharine. Every other part may be easily conceived and easily written. Johnson.

* Chetwood says that, during one season, it was exhibited 75 times. Steevens.

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