Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

Lear. Say? How is that ? Reg. I cannot think, my sister in the least Would fail her obligation. If, perehance, She have restrain'd che riots of your followers ; 'Tis on such ground, and to such wholesome end, As clears her from all blame.

Lear. My curses on her !

Reg. O Sir, you are old,
Nature in you stands on the very verge
Of her confine ; you should be rul'd and led
By some discretion, that discerns your state
Better than you yourself: therefore, I pray you,
That to our fifter you do make return;
Say, you have wrong'd her, Sir.
Lear. Ask her forgiveness?

you but mark, how this becomes the Use? (18)
Dear daughter, I confess, that I am old;
Age is unneceffary: on my knees I beg,
That you'll vouchsafe me raiment, bed, and food.

Reg. Good Sir, no more ; these are unsightly tricks ; Return you to my sister.

Lear. Never, Regan :
She hath abated me of half

my

train ;

Do

(18) Do you but mark botu tbis becomes the house?] This phrase is to me unintelligible, and seems to say nothing to the purpose: Nei. ther can it mean, as I conceive, how this becomes the order of famiJies. Lear would certainly intend to reply, how does asking my daughter's forgiveness become me as a father, and agree with common fashion, the establini'd rule and custom of nature ? And therefore it seems no doubt to me, but the poet wrote, as I have alter'd the text. Let us examine, how he has expressed elsewhere upon this sentiment, Alonso says, in the Tempest ;

But, oh, how oddly will it sound, that I

Must ask my child forgiveness ?
And Volumnia, in Coriolanus, says to her fon;

I kneel before thee, and unproperly
Shew duty as mistaken all the while

Between the child and parent.
Now what is odd, and improper, and mistaken, must

concluded to be against rule and custom : And that Shakespeare employs Use in this Signification, is too obvious to want a proof.

Look'd

Look'd blank upon me; struck me with her tongue, (19)
Moft ferpent-like, upon the very heart, .
All the stor’d vengeances of heaven fall
On her ungrateful Top! ftrike her young bones,
You taking airs, with lameness ! -

Corn, Fie, Sir! fie!

Lear. You nimble lightnings, dart your blinding flames
Into her scornful eyes ! infect her beauty,
You fen-fuck'd fogs, drawn by the pow'rful sun
To fall, and blaft her pride.

Reg. O the blest gods !
So will you wish on me, when the rafh mood is on.
Lear. No, Regan, thou shalt never have my

curse: Thy tender-hefted nature shall not give (20)

Thee (19) Look'd black upon me,] This is a phrase which I do not understand; neither have I any where else met with it. But to look blank is a known expression, signifying, either to give discouraging looks to another, or to stand dismayed and disappointed one's-self. The poet means here, that Regan gave him cold looks, as he before phrases it in this play. In Hamlet, he has changed the adjective into a verb;

Each opposite, that blanks the face of joy. Milton (a ftudious imitator not only of our poet's words, but phrases ;) often uses blank in our author's senle here;

There without sign of boast, or sign of joy,
Solicitous and blank, he thus began.

Par, Reg. B. 20
And with confusion blank his worshippers. Sampf. Agonista
And noble grace that dash'd brute violence ;
With sudden adoration and blank awe.

Mafque at Ludlow-Calle
-Adam, soon as he heard
The fatal trespass done by Eve, amaz'd,',
Aftonied stood and blank.

Par. Loft, B. 96 And in another paffage, with an equivalent exsreslion ;

Thus while he fpake, each pafliun dimm'd his face. (20) Thy tender-hearted nature] This, as I presume, was Mr. Pope's sophistication; I have restored from the old copies, teridere kefied: (which, I am fatisfied, was the poet's word) i, e. whofe borom is keav'd with tender paflions. So in IV inter's Tale.

--But if one present
Th' abhorr’d ingredient to his eye make known
How he hath drunk, he cracks his gorge, his fides,

With violent bafts.
VOL. VI,

Ibid. B. 4.

Thee o'er to harshness; her eyes are fierce, but thine
Do comfort, and not burn. 'Tis not in thee
To grudge my pleasures, to cut off my train,
To bandy hafty words, to scant my fizes,
And, in conclusion, to oppose the bolt
Against my coming in. Thou better know'ft
The offices of nature, bond of child-hood,
Effects of courtesy, dues of gratitude:
Thy half oʻth' kingdom thou hast not forgot,
Wherein I thee endow'd.

Reg. Good Sir; to th' purpose. [Trumpet within
Lear. Who put my man i' th' stocks ?

Enter Steward.
Corn. What trumpet's that?

Reg. I know't, my fifter's: this approves her letter, That she would soon be here. Is your lady come?

Lear. This is a llave, whose easy-borrow'd pride
Dwells in the fickle grace of her he follows.
Out, varlet, from my sight.
Corn. What means your Grace ?

Enter Gonerill. Lear. Who stock't my fervant? Regan, I've good hope, Thou did'ft not know on't. Who comes here? O Heav'ns, If you do love old men, if

your

sweet sway (21) Hallow obedience, if yourselves are old,

Make And again afterwards in the same play ;

-'Tis such as you,
That creep like shadows by him, and do figh

At each his needless beavings.
So, speaking of Cordelia's grief, in our present play,

Once, or twice,
She beav'd the name of father

Pantingly forth.
And so the Daupbin, in King Jobn.

Lift. up thy brow, renowned Salisbury;

And with a great heart heave away this storm, (21)

----if your sweet sway Allow obedience, Could any man in his fenfes, and Lear has 'em yet, make it a question whether heaven allow'd obedience ? undoubtedly,

the

[ocr errors]

Make it your cause ; fend down and take my part.
Art not alham'd to look upon this beard ?
O Regan, will you take her by the hand ?

Gor. Why not by th’ hand, Sir? how have I offended ?
All's not offence, that indiscretion finds,
And dotage terms fo.

Lear. O fides, you are too tough! Will you yet hold :-how came my man i' th' Stocks ?

Corn. I set him there,' Sir: but his own disorders Desery'd much less advancement.

Lear. You? did you?

Reg. I pray you, father, being weak, seem so.
If, 'till the expiration of your month,
You will return and sojourn with my sister,
Dismissing half-your train, come then to me;
I'm now from home, and out of that provision
Wbich shall be needful for your

entertainment,
Lear. Return to her and fifty men dismiss'd ?
No, rather I abjare all roofs, and chuse (22)
To be a comrade with the wolf and owl;
To wage, against the enmity o' th' air,
Necessity's tarp pinch -Return with her ?
Why, the hot-blooded France, that dow'rless took
Our youngest born, I could as well be brought
To knee bis throne, and 'Squire-like pension beg,
To keep base life a-foot ;-Return with her?
Persuade me rather to be slave, and sumpter,
To this detested groom.

Gon. At your choice, Sir.

--and chufe

the poet wrote-hallow obedience,-i. e. if by your ordinances you hold and pronounce it fanétified; and punish the violators of it as facrilegious persons,

Mr. Warburton (22) --To wage against the enmity o th' air, To be a comrade with the wolf and owl, Neceffity's farp pinch.] The breach of the sense here is a manifest proof, that these lines were transposed by the first editors : Neither can there be any syntax or grammatical coherence, unless we suppose Neceffity's sharp pinch to be the accusative to wage. As I've placed the verses, the sense is fine and easy; and the sentence compleat and hoished,

Lear.

C 2

Lear. I prythee, daughter, do not make me mad,
I will not trouble thee, my child. Farewel;
We'll no more meet, no more fee one another ;
But yet thou art my flesh, my blood, my daughter,
Or rather a disease that's in my fieth,
Which I must needs call mine; thou art a bile,
A plague-fore, or imbofled carbuncle,
In my corrupted blood; but I'll not chide thee.
Let shame come when it will, I do not call it;
I do not bid the thunder-bearer Thoot,
Nor tell tales of thee to high-judging Fove.
Mend, when thou can'ft; be better, at thy leisure.
I can be patient, I can stay with Regan ;
I, and my hundred Knights.

Reg. Not altogether 10;
I look'd not for you yet, nor am provided
For

your fit welcome; give ear to my sister;
For those that mingle reason with your passion,
Must be content think you old, and lo--
But she knows what she does.

Lear. Is this well-spoken?

Reg. I dare avouch it, Sir; what, fifty followers ? Is it not well? what should you need of more? Yea, or so many ? fince both charge and danger Speak 'gainst so great a number : how in one house Should many people under two commands Hold amity? 'tis hard, almost impoflible.

Gon. Why might not you, my Lord, receive attendance From those that the calls servants, or from mine?

Reg. Why not, my Lord ? if then they chanc'd to
We could controul them ; if you'll come to me,
(For now I spy a danger) I intreat you
To bring but five and twenty ; to no more
Will I give place or notice.

Lear. I gave you all-
Reg. And in good time you gave it.

Lear. Made you my Guardians, my depofitaries;
But kept a reservation to be follow'd

flack ye,

« AnteriorContinuar »