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“ O earth, I will befriend thee more with rain,
" That shall distil from these two ancient urns?,
“ Than youthful April shall with all his showers:
“ In summer's drought, I'll drop upon thee still;
“ In winter, with warm tears I'll melt the snow,
“ And keep eternal spring-time on thy face,
“ So thou refuse to drink my dear sons' blood.

Enter Lucius, with his Sword drawn.
0, reverend tribunes! gentle-aged-men !
Unbind my sons, reverse the doom of death;
And let me say, that never wept before,
My tears are now prevailing orators.

Luc. O, noble father, you lament in vain;
The tribunes hear you not, no man is by,
And you recount your sorrows to a stone. .

Tit. Ah, Lucius, for thy brothers let me plead : Grave tribunes, once more I entreat of you. Luc. My gracious lord, no tribune hears you

speak. Tit. Why,'tis no matter, man: or if they did mark, They would not pity me, yet plead I must',




two ancient URNS,] Oxford editor.-Vulg. ancient ruins.JOHNSON.

Edition 1600-ruines, as in other old copies. Todd.
8 O, reverend tribunes! gentle-aged-men!] Edition 1600 :

O, reverend tribunes ! oh gentle aged men.” Todd.
or, if they did mark,
All bootless to them, they'd not pity me.
Therefore, &c.] The edition 1600 thus :

or if they did marke,
They would not pitty me, yet pleade I must,
“ All bootless unto them.

“ Therefore,” &c.
This I conceive to be the right reading. Todd.

The quarto 1600 reads as in the text, except that for—" All bootless,” it reads—“ And bootless." The editor of the folio, finding the passage corrupt in the quarto of 1611, mended it thus :

All bootless unto them.
Therefore I tell my sorrows to the stones;
Who, though they cannot answer my distress,
Yet in some sort they're better than the tribunes,
For that they will not intercept my tale:
When I do weep, they humbly at my feet
Receive my tears, and seem to weep with me;
And, were they but attired in grave weeds,
Rome could afford no tribune like to these,
A stone is soft as wax, tribunes more hard than

A stone is silent, and offendeth not;
And tribunes with their tongues doom men to

death. But wherefore stand'st thou with thy weapon

drawn ? Luc. To rescue my two brothers from their

For which attempt, the judges have pronounc'd
My everlasting doom of banishment.

Tir. O happy man! they have befriended thee.
Why, foolish Lucius, dost thou not perceive,
That Rome is but a wilderness of tigers ?
Tigers must prey; and Rome affords no prey,
But me and mine : How happy art thou then,
From these devourers to be banished ?
But who comes with our brother Marcus here?

they would not mark, All bootless unto them, they would not pity me,” &c. The original is certainly the true reading. In the quarto 1611, an entire line

They would not pity me,” &c. was omitted by the carelessness of the printer; an error which, I have no doubt, has often happened in those plays of which we have only the folio copy. MALONE.

1 A stone is soft as wax, tribunes more hard than stones :) The author, we may suppose, originally wrote:

“ Stone's soft as wax,” &c. STEEVENS.

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Mar. Titus, prepare thy aged eyes to weep;
Or, if not so, thy noble heart to break;
I bring consuming sorrow to thine age.

Tit. Will it consume me ? let me see it then.
MAR. This was thy daughter.
Tit. Why, Marcus, so she is.
Luc. Ah me! this object kills me !
Tit. Faint-hearted boy, arise, and look upon

her :
Speak, my Lavinia ?, what accursed hand
Hath made thee handless in thy father's sight : ?
What fool hath added water to the sea ?
Or brought a faggot to bright-burning Troy?
My grief was at the height before thou camist,
And now, like Nilus, it disdaineth bounds.-
Give me a sword, I'll chop off my hands too“;
For they have fought for Rome, and all in vain;
And they have nurs'd this woe, in feeding life ;
In bootless prayer have they been held up,
And they have serv'd me to effectless use :
Now, all the service I require of them
Is, that the one will help to cut the other.-

2 Speak, my Lavinia,] My, which is wanting in the first folio, was supplied by the second. Steevens. 3 — in thy father's sight?] We should read-spight?

WARBURTON. - I'll chop off my hands too ;] Perhaps we should read :

or chop off,” &c. It is not easy to discover how Titus, when he had chopped off one of his hands, would have been able to have chopped off the other. STEEVENS,

I have no doubt but the text is as the author wrote it. Let him answer for the blunder. In a subsequent line Titus supposes himself his own executioner ;

** Now all the service I require of them,
“ Is that the one will help to cut the other.” Malone.

'Tis well, Lavinia, that thou hast no hands; For hands, to do Rome service, are but vain. Luc. Speak, gentle sister, who hath martyr'd

thee? Mar. O, that delightful engine of her thoughts', That blab’d them with such pleasing eloquence, Is torn from forth that pretty hollow cage; Where, like a sweet melodious bird, it sung Sweet varied notes, enchanting every ear! Luc. O, say thou for her, who hath done this

deed ? Mar. O, thus I found her, straying in the park, Seeking to hide herself; as doth the deer, That hath receiv'd some unrecuring wound. Tit. It was my deero; and he, that wounded

her, Hath hurt me more, than had he kill'd me dead : For now I stand as one upon a rock, Environ'd with a wilderness of sea; Who marks the waxing tide grow wave by wave, Expecting ever when some envious surge Will in his brinish bowels swallow him. This way to death my wretched sons are gone; Here stands my other son, a banish'd man; And here my brother, weeping at my woes; But that, which gives my soul the greatest spurn, Is dear Lavinia, dearer than my soul.Had I but seen thy picture in this plight, It would have madded me; What shall I do Now I behold thy lively body so ?

5 O, that delightful ENGINE OF HER THOUGHTS,] This piece furnishes scarce any resemblances to Shakspeare's works; this one expression, however, is found in his Venus and Adonis : “Once more the engine of her thoughts began."

MALONE. 6 It was my DEER;] This play upon deer and dear has been used by Waller, who calls a lady's girdle

“The pale that held my lovely deer." Johnson.

Thou hast no hands, to wipe away thy tears;
Nor tongue, to tell me who hath martyr'd thee :
Thy husband he is dead; and, for his death,
Thy brothers are condemn'd, and dead by this :-
Look, Marcus ! ah, son Lucius, look on her!
“ When I did name her brothers, then fresh tears
“ Stood on her cheeks; as doth the honey dew

Upon a gather'd lily almost wither'd.
Mar. Perchance, she weeps because they killd

her husband : Perchance, because she knows them innocent. Tit. If they did kill thy husband, then be

joyful, Because the law hath ta'en revenge on them.No, no, they would not do so foul a deed; Witness the sorrow that their sister makes.Gentle Lavinia, let me kiss thy lips; Or make some sign how I may do thee ease : Shall thy good uncle, and thy brother Lucius, And thou, and I, sit round about some fountain; Looking all downwards, to behold our cheeks How they are stain'd; like meadows?, yet not dry With miry slime left on them by a flood ? And in the fountain shall we gaze so long, Till the fresh taste be taken from that clearness, And made a brine-pit with our bitter tears? Or shall we cut away our hands, like thine ? Or shall we bite our tongues, and in dumb shows Pass the remainder of our hateful days ? What shall we do? let us, that have our tongues, Plot some device of further misery, To make us wonder'd at in time to come. Luc. Sweet father, cease your tears; for, at your

grief, See, how my wretched sister sobs and weeps.

7 — Like meadows,] Old copies-in meadows. Corrected by Mr. Rowe. Malone.

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