Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

“ The two-handed engine,
Ready to strike once and strike no more."

Lycid. 131. (55) Would, like the spring that turneth wood to stone,

Convert his gyves to graces] Would, by a process like that with which wood is turned into stone by the action of a petrifying well, convert the iron fettere that load and encumber him, into elegant and graceful ornaments: Mercurii talaria.

Mr. Reed refers to such a spring, called the dropping well, in Camden, edit. 1590, p. 564 : “ Sub quo fons est in quem ex impendentibus rupibus aquæ guttatim distillant, unde DropPING WELL vocant, in quem quicquid ligni immittitur, lapideo cortice brevi obduci & lapidescere obseroatum est."

For would, the quartos here read work.

(56) Too lightly timber'd for so loud a wind] “ Weake bowes and lighte shaftes, cannot stand in a roughe winde.Ascham's Toxophilus, 1589, p. 57. STEEVENS.

The quartos for loud a wind, read loued armes, and loued armed.

(57) let our beard be shook with danger]

“ Idcirco stolidam præbet tibi vellere barbam

Jupiter ?” Persius, Sat. ii. Steevens. (58) As checking at his voyage] Holding back, hesitating about. It is a term of falconry. Mr. Steevens quotes Hinde's Eliosto Libidinoso, 1606: "For who knows not, quoth she, that this hawk, which comes now so fair to the fist, may tomorrow check at the lure?"

Mr. Steevens's quartos for checking at read liking not : but Mr. Malone states, that the quarto of 1604 reads “ As the king at his voyage."

(59) Sir, this report] Two lines above, where this extract from the quartos begins, this word, Sir, finishes the sentence; and the folios read,

“If one could match you, sir,-this report of his." (60) love is begun by time;

And that I see, in passages of proof,

Time qualifies the spark and fire of it.] The operation of time, whose slow and gradual progress is necessary to ripen a genuine and legitimate passion, has, as experience shows in conclusive instances, a powerful influence in producing its decay, as well as in giving it birth.

Of the dignity and constancy of this passion, our author, when not sustaining a character, speaks in clearer language, in more earnest terms, and in a higher strain of poetry, Sonn. CXVI.

« Love's not Time's Foole ; tho' rosie lips and cheeks

“ Within his bending sickle's compasse come :
“ Love alters not with his breefe houres and weekes;
“ But beares it out ev'n to the edge of doome.”

4to. 1609.

(61) For goodness, growing to a plurisy] Superfluity, excess.

The dramatic writers of that time frequently call a fulness of blood a plurisy, as if it came, not from ineupà, but from plus, pluris. WARBURTON.

Against the blood, or plurisie of blood. The disease of blood is, some young horses will feed, and being fat will increase blood, and so grow to a plurisie, and die thereof if he have not soon help.” Mascal on Cattle, 1062, p. 187. Tollet.

in a word,
“ Thy plurisy of goodness is thy ill."

Massing. Unnat. Combat.
that heal'st with blood
“ The earth, when it is sick, and cur'st the world
“Of the plurisy of people!” Two Noble Kinsmen.

M. Mason. The word is spelt plurisy in the quarto, 1604, and is used in the same sense as here, in 'Tis Pity she's a Whore, by Ford, 1633 :

“ Must your hot itch and plurisie of lust,
“ The hey-day of your luxury, be fed

Up to a surfeit ?" Malone.
(62) And then this should is like a spendthrift sigh,

That hurts by easing] That is, the anxiety and anguish of mind it relieves, is counterbalanced by the waste and exhaustion that it causes of the vital spirits, and draining of the sources of life. Dr. Johnson says, it is a notion very prevalent, that sighs impair the strength, and wear out the animal powers; and this idea is much insisted upon by our author. In M.N. Dr. III. 2. we have:

", Sighs of love, that cost the fresh blood dear.” Herm. blood drinking hate," I H. VI. Plantag. II. 4.“ blood consuming sighs," II . VI. Q. Marg. III. 2. “ blood sucking sighs," III H. VI. Q. Eliz. V. 4. “ dry sorrow drinks out blood,” R. and Jul. III. 5. Rom.

Care preying upon the mind, or the " self harming, or life harming heaviness," in R. II. Bush. II. 2. is a classical idea. We have “ Luctus edax" in Sil. Ital. and in Homer.

διος αλατο 'Oy Juuoy xatedwy. 11. Z. 201. The modern editors produce many instances in our early writers. Mr. Steevens quotes the Governall of Helthe, &c.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

printed by Wynkyn de Worde : “ And for why whan a man casteth out that noble humour too moche, he is hugely dyscolored, and his body moche febled, more than he lete four sythes, soo moche blode oute of his body." (63) No place, indeed, should murder sanctuarize;

Revenge should have no bounds] Throw a sacred and inviolable fence over.

So blind or hardy are guilt and passion, that they will often, by distinctly acknowledging the justice of any revenge for one foul crime, while they are contriving and instigating another equally atrocious, or propounding maxims that justify their future fate, become parties to their own condemnation. See Timon.

An you begin to rail on society once." I. 2. Tim. And M. for M. II. 1. Ang.

(64) unbated] Not blunted, as foils are by a button fixed to the end. “ That honour, which shall bate his scythe's keen edge."

L. L. L. MALONE. Mr. Steevens cites North's Plutarch : “ he shewed the people the cruel fight of fencers, at unrebated swords.” And see V. 2. Laert.

(65) for the nonce] The present purpose.,

Nenna, nenning Suio-Goth. a se impetrare posse. to prevail with oneself to do a thing, to have a mind to do it. Rich. of Gloster and Chaucer wrote nones. In the old romance of Ywaine and Gawin, it is nanes. Serenius." Todd's Dict. See I H. IV. Poins, I. 2.

(66) and long purples] By long purples is meant a plant, the modern botanical name of which is orchis morio mus, anciently testiculus morionis. The grosser name by which it passes, is sufficiently known in many parts of England, and particularly in the county where Shakespeare lived. Thus far Mr. Warner. Mr. Collins adds, that in Sussex it is still called dead men's hands; and that in Lyte's Herbal, 1578, its various names, too gross for repetition, are preserved.

One of the grosser names of this plant Gertrude had a particular reason to avoid. MALONE.

(67) That liberal shepherds] That, to which free spoken shepherds, &c.

Puttenham, speaking in his Arte of Engl. Poesie of the Figure, Parisia or the Licentious, says, when the “ intent is to declare in broad and liberal speeches, which might breede offence or scandall, he will seeme to bespeake pardon before

hand, wherby licentiousness may be the better borne withall." 4to. 1589, p. 199. Mr. Malone quotes Othel. II. 1. Desd.

Is he not a most profane and liberal counsellor?” And Field's Woman's a Weathercock, 1612 :

Next that, the fame
“Of your neglect, and liberal-talking tongue,

• Which breeds my honour an eternal wrong." (68) As one incapable of her own distress] Unconscious, in. sensible of. In III. 4. Háml. we have “ making stones capa. ble:" but a more apt instance occurs in Henry Brereton's Newes of the present Miseries of Rushia, 4to. 1614. " The wretched state and miserable condition of this untimely widdowed lady, and two sonnes, both so young, that they were not capable of their calamity;" P. 29. See also “ alongst the galupin or silver paved way of heaven, conducted into the great hall of the gods, Mercury sprinkled me with water, which made me capable of their divine presence.'

Greene's Orpharion, 4to. 1599, p. 7. “ Poore little brat, incapable of care." Drayton's Moses his Birth, 4to. 1630.

[ocr errors]

(69) Or like a creature native and indu'd

Unto that element] With qualities naturally adapted to. Mr. Malone says, our old writers used indued and endowed in. discriminately. « To indue," says Minsheu in his Dictionary, “ sæpissime refertur ad dotes animo infusas, quibus nimirum ingenium alicujus imbutum et initiatum est, unde et G. instruire est L. imbuere. Imbuere proprie est inchoare et initiari.”

In Cotgrave's French Dictionary, 1611, instruire is interpreted “ to fashion, to furnish with.” Our author uses this term in the same way in Oth.

“ For let our finger ache and it endues
“ Our other healthful members, ev'n to that sense

“ Of pain.” III. 4. Desd. where it means fashions, moulds, adapts by communicating or imparting congenial sensations ; makes to participate of. (70) I have a speech of fire, that fain would blaze,

But that this fully doubts it] Douts, does out. rage had flamed, if this flood of tears had not extinguished it.” The quartos and folio of 1632 read drowns for doubts. In this sense, so spelt, it is found in H. V. Dauph. IV. 2. as was the orthography of that age ; and see also I. 4. Haml. to Horat.

[ocr errors]

ACT V.

p. 102.

(1) an acı hath three branches ; it is to act, to do, and to perform: Argal, &c.] Warburton says, this is ridicule upon scholastic divisions without distinction: and distinctions without difference. The quartos, instead of “perform: argal," read. “perform, or all; she," &c.

(2) Even christian] Equal, fellow. The phrase occurs throughout Chaucer, Despitous is he that hath disdain of his neighbout, that is to sayn, of his even cristen.The Persones Tale, Tyrwh. III. 181, and ib. 207, 209, 236, 237. Mr. Steevens quotes also Chaucer's Jack Upland, and Gower's Confess. Amant. :

“ Of beautie sighe he never hir even.” Lib. V. And the Paston Letters, III. 421, &c. as does Mr. Malone Hall's Chronicle, fo. 261, H. VIII. to his parliament: “ -you might say that I, beyng put in so speciall a trust as I am in this case, were no trustie frende to you, nor charitable man to mine even christian,—."

And we have, in G. Chapman's Translation of the Works and Days of Hesiod,

** Give never to thy friend an even respect
“ With thy borne brother.” 4to. 1629, p. 32.

Μηδε κασιγνηθω ισον ποιείσθαι εταιρον. ν. 705. (3) Was he a gentleman] Undoubtedly, says Mr. Douce, a ridicule this of heraldry. He cites Gerard Leigh's Accedence of Armourie, 4to. 1591, p. 13. “For that it might be known, that even anon after the creation of Adam, there was both gentlenes and ungentlenes, you shall understand, that the second man that was born was a gentleman, whose name was Abell;" and elsewhere, “ Jesus Christ, a gentleman of great linage." Ib. He adds the very ancient proverbial saying: “ When Adam delv'd, and Eve

span, “ Where was then the gentleman ?" Illustr. II. 262. (4) a stoup of liquor] A jug. “ Stoup is a common word in Scotland at this day, and denotes a pewter vessel, resembling our wine measure, but of no determinate quantity; that being ascertained by an adjunct, as gallon-stoup, pint-stoup, mutchkinstoup. The vessel, in which they fetch or keep water, is also called the water-stoup. A stoup of wine is therefore equivalent to a pitcher of wine."

RITSON. Sce Tw. N. II. 3. Sir Toby.

« AnteriorContinuar »