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touch or play; but the etymology of the former is yet undecided. It has been supposed to be from the French sonner to sound. Both words occur frequently in our old dramatists.
"Well, Suffolk, thou," &c. :- So the folio. The second folio supplies the deficient syllable by reading, "Well, Suffolk, yet thou," &c. But were any emendation to be admitted, we should read, Well, Suffolk's Duke,' &c., the quarto having, "Why Suffolkes Duke," &c. from all suspects":- The folio has, "from all suspence." It was left for Steevens to see the error and make the correction.
"as is the ravenous wolf": - The folio has, "ravenous wolves." The correction, required by the verb, and justified by "a dove," "the raven," and "a lamb," in the preceding lines, was made by Rowe, and in Mr. Collier's folio of 1632.
"Welcome, Lord Somerset," &c.: An anachronism. Somerset did not assume the regency of France until three years after this parliament and the murder of Gloster.
My liefest liege":- i. e., my most highly regarded liege. See the Note on alderliefest,' Act I. Sc. 1.
"Fair lords":-The folio has, "Free lords," which is meaningless, except to those who can believe that 'free' meant noble; as to which, see the Note on "the free maids," Twelfth Night, Act II. Sc. 4. The reading of the text, which supposes an easy typographical error, and which is justified by Shakespeare's frequent use of the phrases fair lord' or lords,' fair assembly,' 'fair prayer,' fair gentleman' or gentlemen,' was found in Mr. Collier's folio of 1632.
"The King will labour still to save his life":- Yet, when, after the death of the Duke, his friends made many and powerful efforts in parliament to obtain a declaration of his innocence, they could not succeed while the government was in Henry's own hands. It is not clear that Gloster was murdered, or, if he was, that the King was not concerned in, or consenting to, his death. See the authorities quoted by the Right Hon. Peregrine Courtenay, in his Commentaries on the Historical Plays, &c., pp. 276-282.
"Which mates him first," &c.: Here mate' may be
used either with or without a reference to chess. 66 • Mate, exp. Pined, Consumed, Tame, Daunted, Abashed, à Fr. Mater, Matter Vincere, Subjugare, vel à Belg. Mat, Teut. Matt = Fessus, Defessus." Skinner's Etymologicon, &c.
stop. p. 322.
"It skills not greatly":- i. e., it avails not greatly, or accomplishes but little. The word occurs in the same sense in The Taming of the Shrew, Act III. Sc. 2, p. 442, and in Twelfth Night, Act V. Sc. 1, p. 235. It hardly needs a gloss, and Scott uses it frequently.
a quick expedient stop":—i. e., an expeditious
nourish a mighty band" - Mr. Collier's folio of 1632 has, "march a mighty band," which is a very plausible suggestion. But there was no need that York should march his band in Ireland; though great need that he should collect and foster [nourish] it while he was brewing rebellion in England.
like a wild Morisco":- See the Note on "as fit as ten groats," &c., All's Well that Ends Well," Act II. Sc. 2, p. 123.
"Enter certain Murderers, hastily" :- The folio has, "Enter two or three running over the stage from the murther of Duke Humfrey." In the quarto there is a direction that the Duke shall be "discovered in his bed, and two men lying on his brest and smothering him in his bed.”
"I thank thee, Meg":- The folio has, "I thank thee, Nell," which is wrong, of course, as the Queen's name is Margaret. It is remarkable too that in that text, the Queen, speaking twice of herself, in her long speech just below, calls herself both times "Elianor." In the first instance the initial M might have been put for Meg or Margaret, and mistaken for N; but it is difficult to account for the two latter, unless, indeed, the same mistake occurred, and it being found that Nell' did not suit the line, the name was printed in full to preserve the rhythm. Capell first read 'Meg.'
"Erect his statua" The folio has, : his statue; but we should clearly read, statua,' which was a common, perhaps the more common, form of the word in Shakespeare's time.
the gentle gusts": Singer's folios of 1632 read, the gusts were gentle, i. e., "well-forewarning."
- Mr. Collier's and Mr. "th' ungentle gusts; " but kindly, in that they were
and witch me, as Ascanius did": - The folio has, "and watch me," &c., an obvious misprint. - The act of Cupid in the guise of Ascanius, as well as the telling of Æneas' woes, is here attributed to Ascanius himself.
The doors of an inner chamber are thrown open," &c.:Here the folio has merely the direction, "Bed put forth ;' the quarto has, "Warwicke drawes the curtains and showes Duke Humphrey in his bed," which, however, follows his request to stay with the Commons till he returns.
"a timely-parted ghost" :- i. e., the body of a
person recently deceased." 'Ghost' was frequently thus
used; and time,' in combination, or of itself, had much more latitude of meaning than it now has. For instance, just below, "Duke Humphrey's timeless death" means, his untimely death.
and to drain": Steevens plausibly suggested that Shakespeare wrote, "and to rain." which reading was found in Mr. Collier's folio of 1632.
whe'r you will or no": -- In the folio, "where you will," &c.
"Unless false Suffolk," &c.:- The folio has, "unless lord Suffolk;" but as the quarto, from which these two lines are taken, has "false," and at the end of this speech the folio has also, "false Suffolk," there seems to be no reasonable doubt that, as Mr. Dyce first suggested, 'lord' was here repeated by mistake from the line above.
a sort of tinkers": - i. e., a company of tinkers. See the Note on "none of any sort," Much Ado about Nothing, Act I. Sc. 1.
breathe infection in this air":
1s In' for 'into.' to curse thine enemies": - The folio has, "thine enemy." But as the quarto has, "canst thou not curse thy enemies," and in both texts Suffolk replies, "wherefore should I curse them?" there can be no doubt that there was a misprint, owing probably to the spelling, . enemie, in the MS.
as doth the mandrake's groan":- In Bulleine's Bulwarke of Defence against Sickness, folio, 1579, p. 141, is the following passage relative to the mandrake, which was first quoted by Reed:
They do affyrme that this herbe cometh of the seede of some convicted dead men and also without the death of some lyvinge thinge it cannot be drawen out of the earth to man's use. Therefore, they did tye some dogge or other lyving beast unto the roote thereof with a corde, and digged the earth in compasse round about, and in the meane tyme stopped their own eares for feare of the terrible shriek and cry of this Mandrack. In whych cry it doth not only dye itselfe, but the feare
It need hardly be remarked that the lizard's sting mentioned below is equally a nonentity with the mandrake's groan.
thereof kylleth the dogge or beast which pulleth it out of the earth."
"wert thou thence":- The second folio needlessly has, "wert thou hence."
"Myself to joy in naught":— The folio has, "Myself no joy," &c. The obviously antithetical character of the two clauses of the sentence justifies the trifling correction, which was found in Mr. Collier's folio of 1632.
The hint for this Scene was taken from a passage in Hall's Chronicle, in which the Cardinal is represented as crying out in his despair, Why should I die having so many riches? If the whole realm would save my life I am able either by policy to get it or by riches to buy it." But Shakespeare borrowed neither dramatic effect nor language from this scene in the Chronicle. Lingard says that the Cardinal made his final exit in the odor of sanctity, and cheered by all the offices of the Church.
a fretful corrosive":- Here 'corrosive' is to be accented on the first syllable. It was generally written corsive in Shakespeare's day.
"Clip dead men's graves": -i. e., clasp or span dead men's graves. See Note on "a kissing traitor," Love's Labour's Lost, Act V. Sc. 2.
"The lives of those":- A full point instead of a mark of exclamation having been mistakenly affixed to this passage in the folio, and hitherto retained, (except by Mr. Knight, who substituted an interrogation mark,) there has been some difficulty found in it, and much fruitless and needless comment and conjecture expended upon it.
66 that by water I should die": See Act I. Sc. 4, for this prediction.
[Jove sometime went disguis'd," &c.:· This line is only found in the quarto, and without it the next speech has no pertinence; the passage having been bodily taken from the quarto.
"The honourable blood of Lancaster" by the mother's side a far off cousin of King Henry, but had no Lancastrian blood in his veins. His mother was great-great granddaughter of Joan of Acre, daughter of Edward I., and great-great-great-grandaunt of Henry VI. In the folio, the first line of this speech is mistakenly printed as a part of the preceding speech, and 'lowly' is corrupted into " lowfie."
[Yes, Poole, Poole? - These two speeches are omitted from the folio. They are absolutely necessary to the connection of the text. The pronunciation of oo, remarked upon elsewhere, is illustrated by this punning use of the name, which was written indifferently Pole, Pool, and Powl, though generally Pole.
thy mother's bleeding heart" :-The folio misprints, "thy mother-bleeding," &c.
are rising up in arms":-The folio misprints, "and rising," &c.
our half-fac'd sun" :- An allusion to the device of Edward III., which was a sun breaking through clouds.
"Than Bargulus," &c.:· Warburton first pointed out that this Bargulus is mentioned by Cicero in his treatise De Officiis. "Bargulus Illyrius latro, de quo est apud Theopompum." Lib. II. C. 11. Mr. Dyce has noticed that the name in Cicero's treatise is a false reading, the Greek of Theopompus giving Bardylis. Hanmer had previously read Bardylis,' pointing out the passage in Diodorus Siculus, in which he is mentioned as the King of Illyria conquered by Philip of Macedon. In the quarto the comparison is to "Abradas the great Macedonian pirate," who is mentioned by Greene in his Penelope's Web. See the Essay on the Authorship of the Three Parts of King Henry VI.
"Penè gelidus," &c.:-The_folio misprints, &c. The author of this bit of Latin is not known. Mr. Verplanck suggests that it may be by Mantuan; as to whom see the Note on "good old Mantuan," Love's Labour's Lost, Act IV. Sc. 2, p. 463.
"Come, soldiers," &c.:
-The folio gives this line to the previous speech - an obvious mistake strangely left to be corrected by Hanmer.
See the Note on "Under
which King, Bezonian," 2 Henry IV., Act V. Sc. 3, p. 562.