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Ross. It stands your grace upon, to do him right 3. WILLO. Base men by his endowments are made great.
YORK. My lords of England, let me tell you this,
I have had feeling of my cousin's wrongs,
NORTH. The noble duke hath sworn, his coming is But for his own: and, for the right of that, We all have strongly sworn to give him aid; And let him ne'er see joy, that breaks that oath. YORK. Well, well, I see the issue of these arms; I cannot mend it, I must needs confess, Because my power is weak, and all ill left: But, if I could, by him that gave me life, I would attach you all, and make you stoop Unto the sovereign mercy of the king; But, since I cannot, be it known to you, I do remain as neuter. So, fare you well ;Unless you please to enter in the castle, And there repose you for this night.
BOLING. An offer, uncle, that we will accept. But we must win your grace, to go with us
3 It STANDS your grace UPON, to do him right.] i. e. it is your interest, it is matter of consequence to you. So, in King
Richard III. :
It stands me much upon,
"To stop all hopes whose growth may danger me." Again, in Antony and Cleopatra:
It only stands
"Our lives upon, to use our strongest hands." STEEVENS. 4 Be his own carver, and cut out his way,] So, in Othello, vol. ix.
"He that stirs next to carve forth his own rage."
To Bristol castle; which, they say, is held
For I am loath to break our country's laws.
A Camp in Wales.
Enter SALISBURY", and a Captain.
CAP. My lord of Salisbury, we have staid ten days,
And hardly kept our country men together,
4 It may be, I will go WITH YOU:-but yet I'll pause ;] I suspect the words-with you, which spoil the metre, to be another interpolation. STEEVENS,
5 Things past redress, are now with me past care.] So, in Macbeth:
Things without remedy,
"Should be without regard." STEEVENS.
6 Scene IV.] Here is a scene so unartfully and irregularly thrust into an improper place, that I cannot but suspect it accidentally transposed; which, when the scenes were written on single pages, might easily happen in the wildness of Shakspeare's drama. This dialogue was, in the author's draught, probably the second scene in the ensuing act, and there I would advise the reader to insert it, though I have not ventured on so bold a change. My conjecture is not so presumptuous as may be thought. The play was not, in Shakspeare's time, broken into Acts; the editions published before his death, exhibit only a sequence of scenes from the beginning to the end, without any hint of a pause of action. In a drama so desultory and erratic, left in such a state, transpositions might easily be made. JOHNSON.
Salisbury,] Was John Montacute, Earl of Salisbury.
And yet we hear no tidings from the king;
The king reposeth all his confidence in thee.
The bay-trees in our country are all wither'd,
These signs forerun the death or fall of kings.—
8 The bay-trees, &c.] This enumeration of prodigies is in the highest degree poetical and striking. JOHNSON.
Some of these prodigies are found in Holinshed: "In this yeare in a manner throughout all the realme of England, old baie trees wither'd," &c.
This was esteemed a bad omen; for, as I learn from Thomas Lupton's Syxt Booke of Notable Thinges, 4to. bl. 1.: “ Neyther falling sycknes, neyther devyll, wyll infest or hurt one in that place whereas a Bay tree is. The Romaynes calles it the plant of the good angell," &c. STEEVENS.
Evelyn says, Amongst other things, it has of old been observed, that the bay is ominous of some funest accident, if that be so accounted which Suetonius (in Galba) affirms to have happened before the death of the monster Nero, when these trees generally withered to the very roots in a very mild winter: and much later; that in the year 1629, when at Padua, preceding a great pestilence, almost all the Bay trees about that famous university grew sick and perished: Certo quasi præsagio, (says my author,) Apollinem Musasque, subsequenti anno urbe illa bonarum literarum domicilio excessuras.'" (Sylva, 4to. 1776, p. 396.) REED.
Fall to the base earth from the firmament!
ACT III. SCENE I.
BOLINGBROKE'S Camp at Bristol.
Enter BOLINGBROKE, YORK, NORTHUMBERLAND,
BOLING, Bring forth these men.
Bushy, and Green, I will not vex your souls
A happy gentleman in blood and lineaments,
So, in our author's 75th Sonnet:
clean.] i. e. quite, completely. REED.
"And by and by, clean starved for a look." MALOne.
Broke the possession of a royal bed,] There is, I believe, no authority for this. Isabel, the queen of the present play, was but nine years old. Richard's first queen, Anne, died in 1392, and the king was extremely fond of her. MALONE.
And stain'd the beauty of a fair queen's cheeks With tears drawn from her eyes by your foul
Myself-a prince, by fortune of my birth;
2 DISPARK'D my parks,] To dispark is to throw down the hedges of an enclosure. Dissepio. I meet with the word in Barrett's Alvearie or Quadruple Dictionary, 1580. It also occurs in The Establishment of Prince Henry, 1610: "Forestes and Parkes of the Prince's disparked and in Lease," &c. STEEVENS.
"Dispark'd my parks." Mr. Steevens supposed that to dispark signified" to throw down the hedges of an enclosure," but this is not the meaning of the term.
To dispark, is a legal term, and signifies, to divest a park, constituted by royal grant or prescription, of its name and character, by destroying the enclosures of such a park, and also the vert (or whatever bears green leaves, whether wood or underwood,) and the beasts of chase therein; and laying it open.
3 From my own windows torn my household coat,] It was the practice when coloured glass was in use, of which there are still some remains in old seats and churches, to anneal the arms of the family in the windows of the house. JOHNSON.
4 Raz'd out my IMPRESS, &c.] The impress was a device or motto. Ferne, in his Blazon of Gentry, 1585, observes, "that the arms, &c. of traitors and rebels may be defaced and removed, wheresoever they are fixed, or set." STEEVENS.
For the punishment of a base knight, see Spenser's Fairy Queen, b. v. c. iii. st. 37. MALONE.