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This both the liuing and the dead offends,
Sharpe surgery where nought but death amends.

Sig. D (D 2).
Mend. Why, we are both but dead, the Duke hates us,
And those whome Princes doe once groundly hate,
Let them prouide to dye, as sure as fate :
Preuention is the hart of pollicie.

Sig. D 3 (v 4). Nor was this custom of marking maxims by inverted commas confined to dramatic pieces only: in Watson's EKATOMIIAOIA, or Passionate Centurie of Loue, n. d., we find;

And yet I coulde, if sorrowe woulde permit,
Tell when and howe I fix't my fancie first,
And for whose sake I lost both will and wit,
And choase the path, wherein I liue accurst :

But such like deedes would breed a double soare,
" For loue gainesaide growes madder then before.
But note herewith, that so my thoughts are bound, &c.

Son. xxxviii.
Then peerelesse Dame, the grounde of all my griefe,
Voutsafe to cure the cause of my complainte :
No fauoure els but thine can yeelde reliefe.
But helpe in time, before I further fainte,
For Daunger growes by lingringe till the last,
And phisick hath no helpe, when life is past.

Son, lix. and in Drayton's Barons Warres ;

And they which could the Complements of state,
To Greatnesse gaue each Ceremonious Rite,
To their Designes to giue the longer date,
The like againe in others to excite;
In entertaining Loue, they welcom'd Hate,
And to one Banquet freely both inuite;

" A Princes Wealth by spending still doth spred,
· Like to a Brooke by many Fountaines fed.

Canto vi. st. 14.

As Fortune meant, her Power on March to show,
And in her Armes to beare him through the Skye,
By him to daunt whos'euer sat below,
Hauing aboue them mounted him so hye:

Who at his beck was he that did not bow,
If at his feet he did not humbly lye?

All things concurre with more then happy Chance,
To rayse the Man whom Fortune will aduance.

St. 17. ed. folio. (Both stanzas are very different in the earlier eds.)



SCENE 3.-C. p. 217.
“I would not, in plain terms, from this time forth,

Have you so slander any moment leisure,
As to give words,” &c.

leisure moment. The old copies, quarto and folio, are uniform in this text, and the modern editors uniform in varying from it. At the same time it is to be admitted, that any moment's leisure' would not be objectionable, if change were required.” COLLIER.

It is absolutely necessary to print “moment's.” Would Shakespeare have employed such a ridiculous inversion, when “leisure moment” suited the metre as well ?

SCENE 4.--C. p. 218; K. p. 46.
Ham. The air bites shrewdly ; it is very

cold." Mr. Knight chooses to adopt from the folio, “ Is it very cold ?"- a reading which would greatly favour the opinion of those critics who contend that the madness of Hamlet was real, not assumed; for no man in his sound senses, just after remarking that the air bites shrewdly, would inquire if it were Very cold.

“The king doth wake to-night, and takes his rouse,” &c. Caldecott is the only commentator who has a note on


“This term,” he says, “probably here imports more than simply vigiliæ, and must have reference to such festivities as were used on the opening, consecration, or wake-day of our churches ; ‘encænia templorum, in quibus noctem sæpe choreis perviligem ducunt bacchantes.' Skinn.,” &c.


In the present passage, “ wake" evidently means hold a late revel.' So, in poets of a much earlier date, we find the words watch and watching employed as equivalent to debauch at night;'

“ Hatefull of harte he was to sobernes,
Cherishyng surfetes, watche and glotony,” &c.

Lydgate's Fall of Prynces, b. ii. fol. L. ed. Wayland.
Withdraw your
hand fro riotous watchyng.

Id. b. ix. fol. xxxi. " His hede was heuy for watchynge ouer nyghte."

Skelton's Bowge of Courte,-Works, i. 43, ed. Dyce. So also in a tract of later date than the present play;

“ Late watchings in Tauerns will wrinckle that face.” The Wandering Jew, 1640, sig. D.

a custom More honour'd in the breach, than the observance.” I once heard an eminent poet maintain that this passage, though it has passed into a sort of proverbial expression, is essentially nonsense: “how,” said he, can a custom be honoured in the breach?"- Compare the following line of a play attributed to Jonson, Fletcher, and Middleton ; “He keeps his promise best that breaks with hell."

The Widow, act iii. sc. 2.

SCENE 5.-C. p. 225; K


And with a sudden vigour it doth posset,

And curd, like eager droppings into milk,
The thin and wholesome blood : so did it mine ;
And a most instant tetter bark'd about,
Most lazar-like, with vile and loathsome crust,

All my smooth body.”
Mr. Knight prints "aigre," and tells us;

“ The word is certainly used in a technical sense in the folio. It is spelt with a capital, Aygre; while eager in the common sense of sharp, in the passage,

• It is a nipping and an eager air,' has the familiar orthography.”

This distinction between aygre and eager (like that between boson and boatswain, and that between stayers and staires; see pp. 1, 56) exists only in Mr. Knight's imagination: in the then uncertain state of orthography there was no end to the variations in the spelling of words. On the authority of the folio too, Mr. Knight gives in the fourth line of this passage, “ bak’d,” — a glaring misprint.


SCENE 1.-C. p. 259.

“For we have closely sent for Hamlet hither,
That he, as 'twere by accident, may

Affront Ophelia : her father, and myself (lawful espials)
Will so bestow ourselves, that, seeing, unseen,

We may of their encounter frankly judge,” &c.
Arrange, by all means, with the other modern editors;

That he, as 'twere by accident, may here
Affront Ophelia :
Her father and myself (lawful espials)

Will so,” &c.
(Just above we find;

· With all my heart; and it doth much content me
To hear him so inclin'd.
Good gentlemen, give him a farther edge,

And drive his purpose on to these delights."
why did not Mr. Collier, for the sake of consistency, print as
a single line of seventeen syllables,
With all my heart; and it doth much content me to hear him so inclin'd.

Good gentlemen," &c.?) In the following page Mr. Collier adopts a different system, chopping up a line (as Malone does) for the sake of making the metre run on regularly from the one speech to the next,though it is evident (not only from other places of the present scene, but from innumerable passages throughout his dramas) that Shakespeare was not at all solicitous about observing such a συνάφεια ;

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“ that, with devotion's visage,
And pious action, we do sugar o'er
The devil himself.

King. O! 'tis too true: [Aside.] how smart

A lash that speech doth give my conscience !" The old metrical regulation (as Mr. Knight saw) is the right one;

“ The devil himself.

King. O'tis too true!
How smart a lash that speech doth give my conscience !"

SCENE 1.-C. p. 261; K. p. 88.
And enterprises of great pith and moment,
With this regard their currents turn awry,

And lose the name of action.” Mr. Knight gives, with the folio, “away,”— which is nothing more than a typographical error for "awry.” In Antony and Cleopatra, act v. sc. 2, all the old copies have,

“ Your crown's

away ; I'll mend it, and then play.” where Pope corrected (and Mr. Knight prints) “awry.” In Beaumont and Fletcher's Knight of Malta, act iv. sc. 2, the second folio has,

Mir. Ha!-to your prayers !

Nor. 'Twas hereabouts ; 'thas put me clean away now.” where the first folio gives correctly “ awry:" and in their Captain, act iii. sc. 3, both the folios have,

Clora. Come, be friends ;
The soldier is a Mars : no more; we are all

Subject to slide away.
where the right reading is obviously “ awry.”

SCENE 1.-C. p. 263 ; K. p. 90. I have heard of your paintings tou, well enough : God hath given you one face, and you make yourselves another : you jig, you amble, and you lisp, and nickname God's creatures, and make your wantonness your ignorance.”

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