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John de la Court, my chaplain, a choice hour
To hear from him a matter of some moment:
Whom after under the confession's seali
He solemnly had sworn, that, what he spoke,
My chaplain to no creature living, but
To me, should utter, with demure confidence
This pausingly ensu’d,—Neither the king, nor his heirs,
(Tell you the duke) shall prosper: bid him strive
To gain the love of the commonalty; the duke
Shall govern England.
Q. Kath.

If I know you well,
You were the duke's surveyor, and lost your

On the complaint o' the tenants: Take good heed,
You charge not in your spleen a noble person,
And spoil your nobler soul! I say, take heed;
Yes, heartily beseech you.
K. Hen.

Let him on:
Go forward.

On my soul, I 'll speak but truth..
I told my lord the duke, By the devil's illusions
This monk might be deceiv'd; and that 'twas dang'rous

for him, 3

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under the confession's seal —] All the editions, down from the beginning, have commission's. But what commission's seal? That is a question, I dare say, none of our diligent editors asked themselves. The text must be restored, as I have corrected it; and honest Holinshed, [p. 863,] from whom our author took the substance of this passage, may be called in as a testimony.-“ The duke in talk told the monk, that he had done very well to bind his chaplain, John de la Court, under the seal of confession, to keep secret such matter." Theobald. 2 To gain the love -] The old copy reads-To the love.

Steevens. For the insertion of the word gain I am answerable. From the corresponding passage in Holinshed, it appears evidently to have been omitted through the carelessness of the compositor: “The said monke told to De la Court, neither the king nor his heirs should prosper, and that I should endeavour to purchase the good wills of the commonalty of England.”

Since I wrote the above, I find this correction had been made by the editor of the fourth folio. Malone. It had been adopted by Mr. Rowe, and all subsequent editors.

Stecvens. - for him.,] Old copy-for this. Corrected by Mr. Rowe.



To ruminate on this so far, until
It forg'd him some design, which, being believ'd,
It was much like to do: He answer'd, Tush!
It can do me no damage: adding further,
That, had the king in his last sickness fail'd,
The cardinai's and sir Thomas Lovell's heads
Should have gone off.
K. Hen.

Ha! what, so rank?4 Ah, ha! There's mischief in this man: -Canst thou say fur

ther? Surv. I can, my liege. K. Hen.

Proceed. Sury,

Being at Greenwich, After your highness had reprov'd the duke About sir William Blomer, K. Hen.

I remember
Of such a time:-Being my sworn servant, 5
The duke retaid'd him his. -But on; What hence?

Surv, If, quoth he, I for this had been committed,
As, 10 the Tower, I thought, I would have play'd
The part my father meant to act upon
The usurper Richard: who, being at Salisbury,
Made suit to come in his presence; which if granted,
As he made semblance of his duty, would
Have put his knife into him.6



so rank?) Rank weeds, are weeds grown up to great height and strength. What, says the King, was he advanced to this pitch? Johnson.

Being my sworn seroant, &c.] Sir William Blomer, (ROlinshed calls him Bulmer) was reprimanded by the King in the star-chamber, for that, being his sworn servant, he had left the King's service for the duke of Buckingham’s.

Edwards's MSS. Steevens. 6 Have put his knife into him.] The accuracy of Holinshed, if from him Shakspeare took his account of the accusations and punishment, together with the qualities of the Duke of Buckingham, is proved in the most authentic manner by a very curious report of his case in East. Term, 13 Hen. VIII, in the year books published by authority, fol. 11 and 12, edit. 1597. After, in the most exact manner, setting forth the arrangement of the Lordi High Steward, the Peers, the arraignment, and other forms and ceremonies, it says: “ Et issint fuit arreine Edward Duc de Buckingham, le derrain jour de Terme le xij jour de May, le Duc de Norfolk donques estant Grand seneschal: la cause fuit, pur ceo

K. Hen.

A giant traitor! Wol. Now, madam, may his highness live in freedom, And this man out of prison? Q. Kath.

God mend all! K. Hen. There's something more would out of thee;

What say'st ?
Surv. After-the duke his father, with the knife,
He stretch'd him, and, with one hand on his dagger,
Another spread on his breast, mounting his eyes,
He did discharge a horrible oath; whose tenour
Was-Were he evil us’d, he would out-go
His father, by as much as a performance
Does an irresolute purpose.
K. Hen.

There's his period,
To sheathe his knife in us. He is attach'd;
Call him to present trial : if he may
Find mercy in the law, 'tis his; if none,
Let him not seek 't of us: By day and night,?
He's traitor to the height.


que il avoit entend l' mort de nostre Săr. le Roy. Car premier. ment un Moine del Abbey de Henton in le countie de Somerset dit a lui que il sera Roy et command' luy de obtenir le benevolence del communalte, et sur ceo il doña certaines robbes a cest entent. A que il dit que le moine ne onques dit ainsi a lui, et que il ne dona ceux dones a cest intent. Donques auterfoits il dit, si le Roy morust sans issue male, il vouł estre Roy: et auxi que il disoit, si le Roy avoit lui commis al prison, donques il voul lui occire ove son dagger. Mes touts ceux matters il denia in effect, mes fuit trove coulp: Et pur ceo il avoit jugement comme traitre, et fuit decolle le Vendredy devant le Feste del Pentecost que fuit le xiij jour de May avant dit. Dieu à sa ame grant mercy-car il fuit tres noble prince et prudent, et mirror de tout courtesie.”

Vaillant. By day and night,] This, I believe, was a phrase anciently signifying-at all times, every way, completely. In The Merry Wives of Windsor, Falstaff, at the end of his letter to Mrs. Ford, styles himself:

« Thine own true knight,

By day or night,&c. Again, (I must repeat a quotation I have elsewhere employed) in the third Book of Gower, De Confessione Amantis:

“ The sonne cleped was Machayre,
“ The daughter eke Canace hight,

By daie bothe and eke by night." The King's words, however, by some critics, have been con. sidered as an adjuration. I do not pretend to have determined the exact force of them. Steevens.



A Room in the Palace. Enter the Lord Chamberlains and Lord Sands.9 Cham. Is it possible, the spells of France should

Men into such strange mysteries ?1

New customs,
Though they be never so ridiculous,
Nay, let them be unmanly, yet are follow’d.

Cham. As far as I see, all the good our English
Have got by the late voyage, is but merely
A fit or two o'the face ;? but they are shrewd ones;


- Lord Chamberlain — ] Shakspeare has placed this scene in 1521. Charles earl of Worcester was then Lord Chamber. lain; but when the King in fact went in masquerade to Cardinal Wolsey's house, Lord Sands, who is here introduced as going thither with the Chamberlain, himself possessed that office.

Malone. Lord Chamberlain -] Charles Somerset, created Earl of Worcester 5 Henry VIII. He was Lord Chamberlain both to Henry VII, and Henry VIII, and continued in the office until his death, 1526. Reed.

9 Lord Sands.] Sir William Sands, of the Vine, near Basingstoke, in Hants, was created a peer, 1524. He became Lord Chamberlain upon the death of the Earl of Worcester in 1526.

Reed. 1 Is it possible, the spells of France should juggle

Men into such strange mysteries?] Mysteries were allegorical shows, which the mummers of those times exhibited in odd fantastic habits. Mysteries are used, by an easy figure, for those that exhibited mysteries; and the sense is only, that the travelled Englishmen were metamorphosed, by foreign fashions, into such an uncouth appearance, that they looked like mummers in a mys. tery. Fohnson.

That mysteries is the genuine reading, [Dr. Warburton would read-mockeries] and that it is used in a different sense from the one here given, will appear in the following instance from Drayton's Shepherd's Garland:

even so it fareth now with thee, " And with these wisards of thy mysterie." The context of which shows, that by wisards are meant poets, and by mysterie their poetic skill, which was before called “mister ar.

Hence the mysteries in Shakspeare signify those fantastic manners and fashions of the French, which had operated as spells or enchantments. Henley.


For when they hold them, you would swear directly,
Their very noses had been counsellors
To Pepin, or Clotharius, they keep state so.
Sands. They have all new legs, and lame ones; one

would take it,
That never saw them 3 pace before, the spavin, *
A springhalt reign'd among them.

Death! my lord,
Their clothes are after such a pagan cut too,5
That, sure, they have worn out christendom. How now?
What news, sir Thomas Lovell?

2 A fit or two o' the face;] A fit of the face seems to be what we now term a grinace, an artificial cast of the countenance.

Fohnson. Fletcher has more plainly expressed the same thought in The Elder Brother:

learnt new tongues “ To vary his face as seamen do their compass.” Steevens. 3 That never saw them - ) Old copy—see 'em. Corrected by Mr. Pope. Malone.

1 A springhalt reign'd among them.] The stringhalt, or springhalt, (as the old copy reads) is a disease incident to horses, which gives them a convulsive motion in their paces.

So, in Muleasses the Turk, 1610: “ - by reason of a general spring-halt and debility in their hams." Again, in Ben Jonson's Bartholomew Fair:

Poor soul, she has had a nghalt.Steevens. Mr. Pope and the subsequent editors, without any necessity, I think, for A springhalt, readAnd springhalt. Malone.

* I am satisfied the text is erroneous; Shakspeare must have known, that the spavin and springhalt were distinct diseases, the spavin causing lameness, from a callous formed on the bone of the gamel joint, which ultimately produces ossification; this is called the bone spavin; the blood spavin is a different disease, which also induces lameness in the same part: the springhalt originates in a contracted sinew of one or both of the hind legs, which, when the horse moves, is discovered by the foot being jirked, or twitched up much above the height, which the animal, if perfectly sound, would naturally raise it. In place of the alteration made by Mr. Pope I would prefer to read, “the spavin, or springhalt reign'd among them." Am. Ed.

cut too,] Old copy-cut to 't. Corrected in the fourth folio. Malone.

Both the first and second folio read-cut too't, so that for part of this correction we are not indebted to the fourth folio.



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