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Who please to come and hear. For life, I prize it
I ne'er heard yet,
That's true enough ;
Leon. You will not own it.
— For life, I prize it —] Life is now to me only grief, and as such only is considered by me : I would therefore willingly dismiss it. Johnson.
7 'T'is a derivative from me to mine,] This sentiment, which is probably borrowed from Ecclesiasticus ii. 11, cannot be too often impressed on the female mind : “ The glory of a man is from the honour of his father; and a mother in dishonour is a reproach unto her children." STEEVENS. 8 I ne'er heard yet,
That any of these bolder vices wanted
Than to perform it first.] It is apparent that according to the proper, or at least according to the present, use of words, less should be more, or wanted should be had. But Shakspeare is very uncertain in his use of negatives. It may be necessary once to observe, that in our language, two negatives did not originally affirm, but strengthen the negation. This mode of speech was in time changed, but, as the change was made in opposition to long custom, it proceeded gradually, and uniformity was not obtained but through an intermediate confusion, Johnson.
More than mistress of, Which comes to me in name of fault, I must not At all acknowledge. For Polixenes, (With whom I am accus’d,) I do confess, I lov'd him, as in honour he requir’d; With such a kind of love, as might become A lady like me; with a love, even such, So, and no other, as yourself commanded : Which not to have done, I think, had been in me Both disobedience and ingratitude, To you, and toward your friend; whose love had spoke, Even since it could speak, from an infant, freely, That it was yours. Now, for conspiracy, I know not how it tastes: though it be dish'd For me to try how: all I know of it, Is, that Camillo was an honest man ; And, why he left your court, the gods themselves, Wotting no more than I, are ignorant.
Leon. You knew of his departure, as you know
Your actions are my dreams;
He speakinds in
9 My life stands in the level —] To be in the level is, to be within the reach.
1 (Those of your fact are so,)] i. e. guilt. + “ For as ”—Mr. Malone adds these words to the preceding
Shalt feel our justice; in whose easiest passage
Sir, spare your threats ;
This your request Is altogether just: therefore, bring forth, And in Apollo's name, his oracle.
[Exeunt certain Officers. Her. The emperor of Russia was my father: O, that he were alive, and here beholding
? Starr'd most unluckily,] i. e. born under an inauspicious planet.
3 — strength of limit.] Strength to pass the limits of the child-bed chamber.
His daughter's trial! that he did but see
Re-enter Officers, with CLEOMENES and Dion. Offt. You here shall swear upon this sword of justice, That you, Cleomenes and Dion, have Been both at Delphos; and from thence have brought This seal’d-up oracle, by the hand deliver'd Of great Apollo's priest; and that, since then, You have not dar'd to break the holy seal, Nor read the secrets in't. Cleo. Dion.
All this we swear. Leon. Break up the seals, and read.
Offi. [reads.] Hermione is chaste, Polixenes blameless, Camillo a true subject, Leontes a jealous tyrant, his innocent babe truly begotten ; and the king shall live without an heir, if that, which is lost, be not found.
Lords. Now blessed be the great Apollo !
Ay, my lord; even so As it is here set down.
Leon. There is no truth at all i'the oracle:
Enter a Servant, hastily. Serv. My lord the king, the king! Leon.
What is the business? Serv. O sir, I shall be hated to report it: The prince your son, with mere conceit and fear Of the queen's speed“, is gone. Leon.
How! gone ?
+ The flatness of my misery ;] That is, how low, how flat I am laid by my calamity. Johnson.
s of the queen's speed,] Of the event of the queen's trial: so we still say, he sped well or ill. Johnson.
Is dead. Leon. Apollo's angry; and the heavens themselves Do strike at my injustice. (HERMIONE faints. How
Take her hence:
[Exeunt Paulina and Ladies, with HERM.
+ “to the hazard” — Malone.
7 Does my deeds make the blacker!] This vehement retraction