Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

• Perhaps (says Mr. Steevens) we should read auguries, i. e. prognostications by means of omens. These, together with the connection of effects with causes, being understood, have been inftrumental in divulging the most secret murders.' This undoubtedly is the general sense of the passage. But we doubt whether Shal-speare by relations meant the connection between cause and effect, which our learned Editors suppose: or that by the expression he shewed such' profound knowledge of antiquity,' as Dr. Warburton imagines he sees in it. Understood relations may mean no more than accounts of things discovered by magot-pies, &c. and so well understood and interpreted as to be the means of bringing the most secret and disguised murderer to public infamy and punishment. To effect this sense, there must be a flight, but no unnatural transposition of the words. • Auguries and relations by magot-pies, &c. understood, have brought forth the secret'st man of blood.'

The complaisance of our poet to King James hath been often noticed. In this tragedy the power of curing the King's Evil is spoken of as hereditary in the house of Banquo, from whence that monarch traced his descent. On the passage which immediately refers to this power, Mr. Steevens hath the following note : · The ingenious Editor of the Household Book of the Fifth E. of Northumb. very acutely observes, that the miraculous gift of curing the evil was left to be claimed by the Stu

Our ancient Plantagenets were humbly content to cure

the cramp.

Ac the end of the first part of Henry IV, we have some curious observations, by Mr. Tollet, on the ancient Morris Dancers. These observations are accompanied with a plate (of which they are in a great measure explanatory) representing an antient window at Mr. Tollet's house, in which the figures, attitudes, and dresses, of the several dancers are delineated with great accuracy and elegance.

In a note on the celebrated exclamation of Richard, in the tragedy wbich goes by his name.

" A horle! a horse! my kingdom for a horse!" Dr. Farmer observes, that Burbage, the alter Rofcius of Camden, was the original Richard, as we may learn from a paffage in the poems of Bp. Corbet, who introduces his host at Bosworth describing the battle:

“ But when he would have said King Richard died,

“ And call'd a horsi! a horse! he Burbage cried.” In the prologue to Henry VIII. there is a passage which lays much strels on the truth of the ensuing representation. This circumstance hath led Mr. Tyrrwhitt to conjecture (and we think with great appearance of probability) that this play of Henry VIII, is the very play mentioned by Sir Henry Wotton (in his letter of July 2, 1613. Reliq. Wotton. p. 425.] of a new play, acted by the King's players, at the Bank's Side, called All is True; representing some principal pieces of the reign of Henry VIII. The extraordinary circumstances of pomp and mejesly, with which that play was fet forth, and the particular incident of certain cannons shot off at the King's entry to a masque.at the Cardinal Wolfey's house (by which the theatre was set on fire and burnt to the ground) are ftriatly applicable to the play before us.

Mr. Chamberlaine, in Winwood's Memorials, vol. iii. p. 469, mentions the burning of the Globe, or Play-house, on the Bank Side, on St. Peter's Day, 1613, which, says he, fell out by a peale of chambers, that I know not on what occasion were to be used in the play. Ben Jonson, in his Execration upon Vulcan, says, they were two poor chambers. [See the stage direction in the play of Henry VIII. a little before the King's entrance, viz. “ Drum and trumpet-chambers discharged.) The Continuator of Stowe's Chronicle, relating the fame incident (p. 1003.) says expressly, that it happened at the play of Henry VIII.

In a MS. letter of Thomas Lorkin to Sir Thomas Puckering, dated London, this last of June 1613, this fame fact is thus related. “ No longer since, than yesterday, while Burbage his company were acting at the Globe the play of Henry VIII. and there shooting of certain chambers in way of triumph, the fire catched, &c. &c. MS. Harl. 7002.'

[Mr. Steevens observes, that they were called chambers, because they were mere chambers to lodge powder. It is the techni. cal term for the cavity in ordnance which holds the combustibles.]

A passage in Coriolanus that had hitherto much puzzled the critics, is at length decisively explained, by Mr. Steevens.

Why in this woolvish gown fhould I stand here, &c.” Dr. Johnson explains it thus rough, bir fute gown.' Mr. Steevens, on consulting the old copy, was surprised to find, that it was ! woolvilh tongue.' He conjectures with good reason, that tongue was misprinted for toge - the Roman toga. For, as Mr. Malone remarks, the very fame mistake of the printer happened in Othello, where we met with tongued instead of toged confuls.Besides, as he farther observes, the old copy hath in and not with, which is a strong proof that the original word was not tongue.' But what shall we make of the epithet woolvib? Luckily Mr. Steevens hath hit on its precise meaning, in an old black letter book, entitled a “ Merye Jest of a man called Howleglas." The hero of this merry jelt binds himself to a taylor. He is set to work about a garment, “ Then said the “ maister, I ment that you should have made up the russet

gown, for a husbandman's gown is here called a wolfe.By a woolvilh toge or gown, Shakspeare might have meant

Coriolanus, Coriolanus, to compare the dress of a Roman candidate to the coarse, frock of a ploughman, who exposed himself to solicit the votes of his fellow ruftics.' In the same play Menenius the friend of Coriolanus says,

Do not cry, havock, where you Mould but hunt

6. With modest warrant." In this passage, Mr. Tyrrwhitt observes, that to cry havock, feems originally to have been a sporting phrase from hafoc, which, in Saxon, fignifies a hawk. 'It was afterwards used in war. So in K. John,

-Cry, havock, kings.” And in Julius Cæsar,

Cry, havock, and let slip the dogs of war." It seems to have been the signal for general Naughter, and is expressly forbidden in the Ordinances des Batailles. 9 R. II. Art. 10. “ Item, que nul foit si hardy de crier havock, sur peine d'avoir la test coupe.”

This expression, cry havock, reminds us of a similar passage in the concluding scene of Hamlet.

" This quarry cries on havock. Sir Thomas Hanmer reads- cries out havock !” Dr. Johnson observes, that ' to cry on was to exclaim against. I suppose (says he) when unfair sportsmen destroyed more quarry or game than was reasonable, the censure was to cry havock.' This interpretation must undoubtedly be erroneous, if Mr. Tyrrwhite's note, mentioned above, is allowed to have any weight. And, indeed, the obvious sense of every other passage, where this expression is made use of, confutes Dr. Johnson's supposition. We are surprised, that so accurate a critic as Mr. Steevens should have suffered Dr. Johnson's note to pass uncorrected. From his filence a person might be ready to infer his approbation.

The passage strikes us in this light. When Fortinbras beholds the flaughter which had been made of so many noble perfonages, the icenes of a bloody hunt rush on his imagination. To laughtered game (called quarry, in old books of hunting and falconry) he compared the victims of that merciless hunter, death. Viewing them, he exclaims :

“ This quarry cries, i. e. repeats, or cries in my ear, the bloody fignal by which they fell as hunted game to the hounds of death" On! Havock !”

It may not be altogether unworthy of observation, that the terms commonly made use of in some parts of England by the gentlemen of the field to encourage the dogs, seems to have been derived from this antient fignal of pursuit. Hoik! Havoik!

We would, with pleasure, give further specimens of the excellence and value of this new edition of Shakspeare, but we have already, perhaps, extended this article too far.

ART.

[ocr errors]

ART. II. Archaeologia: or, Miscellaneous Tracts relative to Anti

quity, &c. Vol. V. Concluded. See Review for February. HE Dune, or Tower of Dornadilla, is described by the

Rev. Mr. Pope, minister of Reay. It is situated in the parish of Duirnes, on Lord Reay's estate. The height of its present ruins is 25 feet on one side; on the other, it is only 9. The door, 3 feet square, fronts the north-east, as we are told is the case in all round buildings in the north. The walls are very thick, and within is an opening or passage, divided into galleries, which run horizontally round about the building; each gallery is 5 feet high; the floor is laid with large flat stones, which gird and bind the whole building compactly together, The common conjecture is, that these galleries were for fleeping-rooms, or barracks, in the hunting season. Beside these, there are other openings, full of shelves, formed of large flat ftones, the use of which seems to have been to give light and fresh air to those who Dept in the galleries, to hold their quivers or baggage, and perhaps, the lower shelves were cup-boards, and prelles for their villuals. What conveniency they had at the bottom is not known, nine feet being filled with stones. Three of the galleries are entire, and goats take shelter in them in snowy weather. The building was at first much higher, and would make, it is said, a grand figure in a foreit.

The masonry, we are told, is extremely well done, but without either lime or clay. Some maintain, that this Dune of Dornadilla was a druidical temple ; but that, Mr. Pope observes, cannot be the case, as the Druids made no use of roofed, or covered buildings, and it appears, that this building was roofed like the round Pictish houtes ; befide, he adds, in that age, there were no inhabitants in these parts to woríhip in any çemple. It does not, however, appear improbable, but that this Dune may have been erected by the Danes, as there are two buildings, said to be exactly the same in other respects, only of larger dimensions, in Glenbeg, which are ascribed to that people. But Mr. Pope informs us, that there is a fragment of a very old poem still preserved, which mentions Dornadilla as the chieftain or prince, for whose fake this building was erected. Concerning this Dornadilla, little more has reached the present day, than that he spent his time in hunting, and was the first who enacted forest laws. Mr. Pope does not mention the

age in which Dornadilla lived. The print consists of the clevation of the tower, and a section of it.

Stone coffins have been frequently found in different parts of England. Mr. Pegge, in a letter to Guftavus Brander, Esq; offers a few observations relative to some lately discovered at Chrift-Church, Twynham, The kift vain of the Britons,

he

he apprehends, were of this kind, some of which rude sepulchral receptacles, he says, he has seen in Derbyshire. These at Chrift-Church are somewhat more artificial than those of the ancient Britons, but as they are formed of ten or eleven pieces (a print of which is exhibited), and there does not appear to have been any stone underneath for the body interred to lie on, Mr. Peyge concludes, that they are very ancient, the production of a rude and barbarous age [perhaps the fourth century), and af. fording a strong proof that Twynham was very anciently settled.

Mr. King presents the Society with two small fragments of antiquity; the one a brick of a very singular form, and ornamented with the representation of some flower, which was found with several others, in clearing away the foundation of an old malting-house, in 1776, in Mersey Island : its texture leads him to fuppose, that it is not of so high antiquity as the times of the Romans. The other fragment was dug up in the same year, near Colchester, by a labourer, who, at the time, discovered about thirty of the same fort, but began immediately to dash them all to pieces, with a view, as he said, “ to save himself the plague and trouble of answering the enquiries that would be made about them.” It was merely by accident that three of . them were preserved. This vefsel (of which, and the other, is a little print) Mr. King supposes to be a kind of lachrymatory; made of course red earth. His article is but short, and he apologizes for descanting on what may be thought trivial, by observing, that many things which appear of little importance when seen separately, have been found very useful means of illustrating curious facts, when viewed with others collectively.

In the 23d article, written by Mr. Brooke, of the Herald's college, we have a description of the great seal of Catherine Parr, the fixth wife of Henry VIII. It is taken from an impression in the collection of Mr. Guftavus Brander. Henry, fays Mr. Brooke, was exceeding kind in granting arms to his wives, though he deprived them of their heads. This seal, the sculpture of which appears to have been very elegant, gives an opportunity for many observations on the family and conneccions of Catherine Parr; to which is added, a curious account of this great lady's funeral, taken from a book in the Cotton library, and never before made public.

The description of an ancient fortification near ChriftChurch, Hampshire, is written by Francis Grore, Erg. It is accompanied with drawings of the entrenchment on Hengiftbury-head, and the camp on St. Catherine's-bill. Mr. Grore apprehends, that these are the remains of Roman works. The name of Hengis seems to direct us to another origin; but that name may have been given after the times of the Romans, though the works were raised by their skill and industry.

« AnteriorContinuar »