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DUKE. Blifs and goodnefs on you!
ESCAL. Of whence are you?

DUKE. Not of this country, though my chance is


To use it for my time: I am a brother

Of gracious order, late come from the fee,
In fpecial bufinefs from his holiness.

ESCAL. What news abroad i' the world?


DUKE. None, but that there is so great a fever on goodness, that the diffolution of it must cure it: novelty is only in requeft; and it is as dangerous to be aged in any kind of courfe, as it is virtuous to be constant in any undertaking. There is scarce truth enough alive, to make focieties fecure: but fecurity enough, to make fellowships accurs'd: ' much upon this riddle runs the wifdom of the world. This news is old enough, yet it is every

from the fee,] The folio reads:
- from the fea. JOHNSON.

The emendation, which is undoutedly right, was made by Mr. Theobald. In Hall's Chronicle, fea is often written for fee.


There is fcarce truth enough alive, to make focieties fecure; but fecurity enough, to make fellowships accurs'd:] The fpeaker here alludes to thofe legal fecurities into which " fellowship leads men to enter for each other. So, in King Henry IV. Part II: "He would not take his bond and yours; he liked not the fecurity.” Falstaff in the fame scene, plays, like the Duke, on the fame word: "I had as lief they fhould put ratsbane in my mouth, as offer to ftop it with fecurity. I look'd he fhould have fent me two and twenty yards of fattin, and he fends me fecurity. Well, he may fleep in fecurity," &c.


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The fenfe is, "There fcarcely exifts fufficient honefty in the world to make focial life fecure; but there are occafions enough where a man may be drawn in to become furety, which will make him pay dearly for his friendships. In excufe of this quibble, Shakspeare may plead high authority. He that hateth furetifhip is fure." Prov. xi. 15. HOLT WHITE.


day's news. was the duke?

ESCAL. One, that, above all other ftrifes, contended especially to know himself.

DUKE. What pleasure was he given to?

ESCAL. Rather rejoicing to fee another merry, than merry at any thing which profeis'd to make him rejoice: a gentleman of all temperance. But leave we him to his events, with a prayer they may prove profperous; and let me defire to know how you find Claudio prepared. I am made to understand, that you have lent him vifitation.


pray you, fir, of what difpofition

DUKE. He profeffes to have received no finifter measure from his judge, but moft willingly humbles himfelf to the determination ofjuftice: yet had he framed to himself, by the inftruction of his frailty, many deceiving promifes of life; which I, by my good leifure, have difcredited to him, and now is he refolved to die.

ESCAL. You have paid the heavens your function, and the prifoner the very debt of your calling. I have labour'd for the poor gentleman, to the extremeft fhore of my modefty; but my brother juftice have I found fo fevere, that he hath forced me to tell him, he is indeed-juftice."

DUKE. If his own life anfwer the ftraitnefs of his proceeding, it fhall become him well; wherein if he chance to fail, he hath fentenced himfelf.

ESCAL. I am going to vifit the prifoner : Fare you well.'

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refolved -] i. e. fatisfied. So, in Middleton's More Diffemblers befides Women, A& I. fc. iii:

The bleffing of perfection to your thoughts lady;
For I'm refolved they are good ones, REED,


he is indeed juftice. ] Summum jus, fumma injuria.


DUKE. Peace be with you!

Exeunt ESCALUS and Provost.

He, who the fword of heaven will bear,
Should be as holy as fevere;
Pattern in himfelf to know,

Grace to fland, and virtue go;

Pattern in himself to know,

Grace to ftand, and virtue go;] Thefe lines I cannot underftand, but believe that they fhould be read thus:

Patterning himself to know,

In grace to stand, in virtue go.

To pattern is to work after a pattern, and, perhaps, in Shakspeare's licentious diction, fimply to work. The fenfe is, he that bears the fword of heaven fhould be holy as well as fevere; one that after good examples labours to know himself, to live with innocence, and to act with virtue. JOHNSON.

This paffage is very obscure, nor can be cleared without a more licentious paraphrafe than any reader may be willing to allow. He that bears the favord of heaven fhould be not lefs holy than fevere: fhould be able to difcover in himself a pattern of fuch grace as can void temptation, together with fuch virtue as dares venture abroad into the world without danger of feduction. STEEVENS.

Grace to stand, and virtue go;] This laft line is not intelligible as it flands; but a very flight alteration, the addition of the word in, at the beginning of it, which may refer to virtue as well as to grace, will render the fenfe of it clear. "Pattern in himself to know, ' is to feel in his own breaft that virtue which he makes others practife. M. MASON.


"Pattern in himself to know," is, to experience in his own bofom an original principle of action, which, inftead of being borrowed or copied from others, might ferve as a pattern to them. Our author, in The Winter's Tale, has again ufed the fame kind of imagery: "By the pattern of mine own thoughts I cut out The purity of his.


In The Comedy of Errors he ufes an expreffion equally hardy and licentious:

"And will have no attorney but myself;"

which is an abfolute catachrefis; an attorney importing precifely a perfon appointed to act for another. In Every Woman in her Humour, 1609, we find the fame expreflion: he hath but shown


"A pattern in himself, what thou shall find


In others. MALONE.

More nor lefs to others paying,
Than by felf-offences weighing.
Shame to him, whofe cruel ftriking
Kills for faults of his own liking!
Twice treble fhame on Angelo,
To weed my vice, and let his grow!?
O, what may man within him hide,
Though angel on the outward fide!"
How may likenefs, made in crimes,
Making practice on the times,
Draw with idle spiders' ftrings
Moft pond'rous and fubftantial things!"

To weed my vice, and let his grow!] i. c. to weed faults out of my dukedom, and yet indulge himself in his own private vices. So, in The Contention betwyxte Churchyard and Camell, &c. 1560: "For Cato doth affyrme

"Ther is no greater fhame,

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My, does not, I apprehend, relate to the Duke in particular, who had not been guilty of any vice, but to any indefinite person. The meaning feems to be - To deftroy by extirpation as it is expreffed in another place) a fault that I have committed, and to lutter his own vices to grow to a rank and luxuriant height. The speaker, for the fake of argument, puts himself in the care of an offending perfon. MALONE.

"Than to reprove a vyce

"And your felves do the fame."

The Duke is plainly speaking in his own perfon.

What he

here terms 46

my vice, may be explained from his converfation in A& I. fc. iv. with Friar Thomas, and efpecially the following line:


'twas my fault to give the people scope.

The vice of Angelo requires no explanation. HENLEY.


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Though angel on the outward fide!] Here we fee what induced our author to give the outward-fainted deputy, the name of Angelo.


3 How may likeness, made in crimes,

Making practice on the times,

Draw with idle Spiders' ftrings.

Moft pond'rous and fubflantial things!] The old copy reads

To draw with," &c. STEEVENS.

Thus all the editions read corruptly;

and so have made an obscure paffage in itself, quite unintelligible. Shakspeare wrote it thus:

Craft againft vice I muft apply:
With Angelo to-night shall lie

How may that likeness, made in crimes,
Making practice on the times,


The fenfe is this. How much wickednefs may a man hide within, though he appear angel without. How may that likeness made in crimes i, e. by hypocrify; [a pretty paradoxical expreffion, an angel made in crimes] by impofing upon the world [thus emphatically expreffed, making practice on the times] draw with its false and feeble pretences [finely called Spiders' ftrings] the moft pondrous and fubftantial matters of the world, as riches, honour, power, reputation, &c. WARBURTON.

Likeness may mean feemlinefs, fair appearance, as we fay, a likely


The Revifal reads thus:

How may fuch likeness trade in crimes,
Making practice on the times,

To draw with idle fpider's frings

Moft pond'rous and fubftantial things.

Meaning by pond'rous and fubftantiai things, pleasure and wealth.


The old copy reads

Making practice, &c. which renders the paffage ungrammatical, and unintelligible. For the emendation now made, mocking] I am answerable. A line in Macbeth may add fome fupport to it:

66 Away, and mock the time with faireft fhow.

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There is no onc more convinced of the general propriety of adhering to old readings. I have ftrenuously followed the course which was pointed out and fuccefsfully purfued by Dr. Farmer and Mr. Steevens, that of elucidating and fupporting our author's genuine text by illuftrations drawn from the writings of his contemporaries. But in fome cafes alteration is a matter not of choice, but neceffity; and furely the prefent is one of them. Dr. Warburton, to obtain fome fenfe, omitted the word To in the third line; in which he was followed by all the subsequent editors. But omiffion, in my apprehenfion, is of all the modes of emendation, the most exceptionable. In the paffage before us, it is clear from the context, that fome verb must have ftood in either the firft or fecond of these lines. Some years ago I conje&ured that, instead of made, we ought to read wade, which was used in our author's time in the sense of to proceed. But having fince had occafion to obferve how often the words mock and make have been confounded in these plays, I am now perfuaded that the fingle error in the


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