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answer words, and only words, I shall forbear them, and refer the rest to my sword.

JOHNSON. Line 879. How much thou wrong'st me,] That is, in supposing that I am proud of my victory. JOHNSON.

Line 884. So wish I, I might thrust thy soul to hell. &c.] Not to dwell upon the wickedness of this horrid wish, with which Iden debases his character, the whole speech is wild and confused. To draw a man by the heels, headlong, is somewhat difficult; nor can I discover how the dunghill would be his grave, if his trunk were left to be fed upon by crows. These I conceive not to be the faults of corruption but negligence, and therefore do not attempt correction. JOHNSON.


Line 12.

-balance it.] That is, balance my hand.


13. A scepter shall it have, have I a soul;] I read:

A scepter shall it have, have I a sword.

York observes that his hand must be employed with a sword or scepter; he then naturally observes, that he has a sword, and resolves that, if he has a sword, he will have a scepter.


Line 101. May Iden live, &c.] Shakspeare makes Iden rail at those enjoyments which he supposes to be out of his reach; but no sooner are they offered to him but he readily accepts them. ANONYMOUS.

Line 147. Shall be their father's bail; and bane, to those-] Considering how our author loves to play on words similar in their sound, but opposite in their signification, I make no doubt but the author wrote bail and bale. Bale (from whence our common adjective, baleful) signifies detriment, ruin, misfortune, &c. THEOBALD. Bale signifies sorrow. Either word may serve. JOHNSON. Line 178. Call hither to the stake my two brave bears,— Bid Salisbury, and Warwick, come-] The Nevils, earls of Warwick, had a bear and ragged staff for their cognizance. Sir J. HAWKINS.

Line 244.

burgonet,] Is a helmet.


-261. Foul stigmatick,] A stigmatick originally and pro

perly signified

for some crime.

person who has been branded with a hot iron See Bullokar's English Expositor, 1616.



Line 297. A dreadful lay!] A dreadful wager; a tremendous stake. JOHNSON.

Line 313. And the premised flames-] Premised, for sent before their time. The sense is, let the flames reserved for the last day be sent now. WARBURTON. Line 319. The silver livery of advised age;] Advised is wise, experienced. MALONE. Line 320. And, in thy reverence,] In that period of life which is entitled to the reverence of others. MALONE.

Line 331. As wild Medea &c.] When Medea fled with Jason from Colchos, she murdered her brother Absyrtus, and cut his body into several pieces, that her father might be prevented for some time from pursuing her.

Line 338. So, lie thou there;

For, underneath an alehouse' paltry sign,

The castle in Saint Albans, Somerset


Hath made the wizard famous in his death.] The

death of Somerset here accomplishes that equivocal prediction given by Jourdain, the witch, concerning this duke; which we met with at the close of the first Act of this play:

"Let him shun castles:

"Safer shall be upon the sandy plains,

"Then where castles, mounted stand."

i. e. the representation of a castle, mounted for a sign.



Line 370.

gallant in the brow of youth,] The brow of youth is an expression not very easily explained. I read the blow of youth; the blossom, the spring.


Line 376. Three times bestrid him,] That is, three times I saw bim fallen, and, striding over him, defended him till he recovered.


Line 388. Well, lords, we have not got that which we have;] i. e. we have not secured, we are not sure of retaining, that which we have acquired. In our author's Rape of Lucrece, a poem very nearly contemporary with the present piece, we meet with a similar expression:

"That oft they have not that which they possess."









Third Part of King Henry VI.] THIS play is only divided from the former for the convenience of exhibition; for the series of action is continued without interruption, nor are any two scenes of any play more closely connected than the first scene of this play with the last of the former. JOHNSON.

Line 61. —if Warwick shake his bells.] The allusion is to falconry. The hawks had sometimes little bells hung upon them, perhaps to dare the birds; that is, to fright them from rising.


Line 103. -as the earldom was.] York means, I suppose, that the dukedom of York was his inheritance from his father, as the earldom of March was his inheritance from his mother, Anne Mortimer, the wife of the earl of Cambridge; and by naming the earldom, he covertly asserts his right to the crown; for his title to the crown was not as duke of York, but earl of March.

MALONE. Line 140. I am son of Henry the fifth,] The military reputa

tion of Henry the Fifth is the sole support of his son. of Henry the Fifth dispersed the followers of Cade.

The name JOHNSON.

Line 186. Think you, 'twere prejudicial to his crown?] The phrase prejudicial to his crown, if it be right, must mean, detrimental to the general rights of hereditary royalty; but I rather think that the transcriber's eye caught crown from the line below, and that we should read—prejudiciul to his son, to his next heir. JOHNSON.

Line 243. They seek revenge,] They go away, not because they doubt the justice of this determination, but because they have been conquered, and seek to be revenged. They are not influenced by principle, but passion.


Line 266. I'll to my castle.] Sandal castle near Wakefield, in Yorkshire.


Line 304. What is it, but to make thy sepulchre,] The queen's reproach is founded on a position long received among politicians, that the loss of a king's power is soon followed by loss of life.


Line 342. Will cost my crown,] i. e. will cost me my crown; will induce on me the expence or loss of my crown. MALONE. Line 343. Tire on the flesh of me,] To tire is to fasten, to fix the talons, from the French tirer. JOHNSON.

Line 344. those three lords-] That is, of Northumberland, Westmoreland, and Clifford, who had left him in disgust.



Line 352.

-sons and brother,] It should be sons and brothers; my sons, and brothers to each other. JOHNSON.

Line 378. An oath is of no moment,] The obligation of an oath is here eluded by very despicable sophistry. A lawful magistrate alone has the power to exact an oath, but the oath derives no part of its force from the magistrate. The plea against the obligation of an oath obliging to maintain a usurper, taken from the unlawfulness of the oath itself in the foregoing play, was rational and just. JOHNSON.

Line 408. The queen, with all, &c.] I know not whether the author intended any moral instruction, but he that reads this has

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