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Mal. This is the Serjeant,
Cap. Doubtful long it stood :
King. Oh, valiant cousin! worthy gentleman ! .
Cap. As whence the sun 'gins his reflection, Shipwracking storms and direful thunders break; (1)
So (1) As whence the sun 'gins bis refication, Shi; wracking storms, and direful thunders break;] Mr. Pope has degraded this word, 'gins, against the general authority of the copies, without any reason aflign'd for so doing; and substituted, gives, in the room of it. But it will soon be obvious, how far our author's good obfer. vation and knowledge of nature goes to establish his own reading, 'gins. For the sense is this ima" As from the place, from whence vi the sun begins his course, (viz. the East,) shipwrecking storms « proceed;
&c."-And it is to in fact, that storms generally come from the East. And it must be fu in reason, because the natural and conftant motion of the ocean is from East to West: and because the motion of the wind has the same general direction. Præcipua generalis [Ventorum] caufa eft ipse Sol, qui igneo suo jubare aerem rarefacit & attenuat; imprimis illum, in quem perpendiculares radios mittit, live supra quem bæret. Aer enim rarefaetus multo majorem locum poftulat. Iride fit, ut aer a sole impulfus alium vicinum aerem ma impetu proSidut; cumque Sol ab Oriente in occidentem circymrotetur, præcipuus ab
So from that spring, whence comfort seem'd to come, (2)
King. Dismay'd not this
So eo aëris impulsus fiet versus occidentem.---Quia plerumque ab aëris per Solem rarefactione oritur, qui cum continue feratur ab Oriente in occia dentem, majori quoque impetu protruditur aër ab Oriente in occidentem, Varenii Geograph: -l. i. c. 14, &c. 20. prop. 10. and 15.----This being fo, it is no wonder that storms should come most frequently from that quarter; or that they should be most violent, because here is a concurrence of the natural motions of wind and wave. This proves clearly, that the true reading is 'gins, i. e. begins: for the other reading does not fix it to ibat quarter: for the sun may give its reflection in any part of its course above the horizon; but it can begin it only in one.
Mr. Warburton. (2) So from that spring, whence comfort seem'd to come, Discomfort swelld.) I have not disturb’d the text here, as the sense does not absolutely require it; tho' Dr. Tbirlby prescribes a very in. genious and easy correction :
So from that spring, wbence comfort seem'd to come,
For whiché might she no lengir restrain
Troil. & Cref: 1. iv. v. 709. I can no more, but here out cast of all welfare abide the daie of my deth, or els to se the fight that might all my wellynge sorowes voide, and of the fode make an ebbe.
Teftament of Love. (3)
I must report they were As cannons overcharg'd with double cracks,] Canaons overcharg'd with cracks I have no idea of : My pointing, I think, gives the easy and natural sense. Masbeth and Banquo were like cannons over
So they redoubled strokes upon the foe :
King. So well thy words become thee, as thy wounds :
Enter Rosse and Angus, But who comes here?
Mal. The worthy Thane of Rolle.
Len, What haste looks through his eyes?
Rofje. God save the King !
Roje. From Fife, great King,
(4) Norway himself, with numbers terrible,
Afifted by that, &c.] Norway himself affifted, &c. is a reading
Confronted b m with self-comparisons,
Curbing bis lavish spirit.], Here again we are to quarrel with
Curbing his lavish spirit. To conclude,
King. Great happiness!
Roje. Now Sweno, Norway's King, craves composition : Nor would we deign him burial of his men, 'Till he disbursed, at Saint Colmes-kill-isle Ten thousand dollars, to our gen'ral use.
King. No more that Thane of Cawdor shall deceive Our bosom int'reft.
Go, pronounce his death ; And with his former title
SCENE changes to the Heath.
Thunder. Enter the three Witches.
Here haft thou been, fifter ?
Witch, Sifter, where thou?
2 Witch. I'll give thee a wind.
Witch. And I another.
He shall live a man forbid; (6)
2 Witch. Shew me, shew me.
1 Witch. Here I have a pilot's thumb, Wrackt as homeward he did come. [Drum within,
3 Witch. A drum, a drum! Macbeth doth come! All. The Weird fifters, hand in hand, (7)
(6) He shall live a man forbid:] i. e. as under a curse, an Interdiation. So, afterwards, in this play;
By bis own interdiction stands accurs’d. So, among the Romans, an outlaw's fentence was aquæ & ignis inter• dictio. i. e. He was forbid the use of water and fire: which imply'd the necessity of banisment,
(7) The weyward fifters, hand in hand,] The Witches are here speaking of themselves; and it is worth an enquiry why they should stile themselves the weyward, or wayward fifters. This word in its general acceptation fignifies, perverse, froward, moody, obftinate, untra&table, &c. and is every where so used by our Shakespeare. To content ourselves with two or three instances ;
Fy, fy, how wayward is this foolish love,
Two Gent, of Verona.
Love's Labour luft,
Macbeth. It is improbable, the Witches would adopt this epithet to themselves, in any of these senses; and therefore we are to look a little farther for the poet's word and meaning. When I had the first suspicion of our author being corrupt in this place, it brought to my mind the following passage in CHAUCER's Troilus and Crescide. lib. iii. v. 618.
But O fortune, executrice of wierdes. Which word the glossaries expound to us by fates or destinies. I was foon confirm'd in my suspicion, upon happening to dip into Heylin's Cosmography, where he makes a short recital of the story of Macbeth and Banquo.
These two (fays be,) travelling together thro' a forest, were met by three Fairies, Witches, Wierds, the Scots call them, &c.,
I presently recollected, that this story must be recorded at more length by Holingshead; with whom I thought it was very probable