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Fran. They vanish'd strangely.
No matter, since They have left their viands behind; for we have
stomachs. Will't please you taste of what is here? Alon.
Not I. Gon. Faith, sir, you need not fear.
When we were boys, Who would believe that there were mountaineers Dew-lapp'd like bulls, whose throats had hanging
at them Wallets of flesh ? or that there were such men, Whose heads stood in their breasts? which now we
I will stand to and feed,
8 A sort of inverted life-insurance was practised by travellers in Shakespeare's time. Before going abroad they put out a sum of money, for which they were to receive two, three, four, or even five times the amount upon their return; the rate being according to the supposed danger of the expedition. Of course the sum put out fell to the depositary, in case the putter-out did not return. Davies has an epigram of some point on this practice :
“ Lycus, which lately is to Venice gone,
Shall, if he do return, gain three for one;
« whose heads stood in their breasts,” were probably the same that Othello speaks of:
“ The Anthropophagi, and men whose heads
Do grow beneath their shoulders." Knight suggests that the report of “ mountaineers dew-lapp'd like bulls" may have sprung from some remarkable cases of goitre, seen by travellers, but not understood.
Thunder and lightning. Enter ARIEL like a harpy ;
claps his wings upon the table, and, by a quaint device, the banquet vanishes.
Ari. You are three men of sin, whom destiny, (That hath to instrument this lower world, And what is in't,) the never-surfeited sea Hath caused to belch up, and on this island Where man doth not inhabit; you ’mongst men Being most unfit to live. I have made you mad;
[Seeing AloN. SEB. foc. draw their swords.
9 Bailey, in his Dictionary, says that dowle is a feather, or rather the single particles of the down.
Upon your heads,) is nothing, but heart's sorrow, And a clear life ensuing.
He vanishes in thunder : then, to soft music, enter the
Shapes again, and dance with mops and mowes, and carry out the table.
Pro. [Aside.] Bravely the figure of this harpy
hast thou Perform’d, my Ariel ; a grace it had, devouring: Of my instruction hast thou nothing 'bated, In what thou hadst to say: so, with good life,10 And observation strange, my meaner ministers Their several kinds have done. My high charms
work, And these, mine enemies, are all knit up In their distractions : they now are in my power; And in these fits I leave them, whilst I visit Young Ferdinand, (whom they suppose is drown'd,) And his and my lov'd darling.
[Erit PROSPERO from above. Gon. I'the name of something holy, sir, why
In this strange stare ?
0, it is monstrous ! monstrous !
10 With good life, i. e. with full bent and energy of mind. Mr. Henley says that the expression is still in use in the west of England.
But one fiend at a time, I'll fight their legions o'er. Ant.
I'll be thy second.
[Exeunt SEB. and ANT. Gon. All three of them are desperate : their
great guilt, Like poison given to work a great time after," Now 'gins to bite the spirits. I do beseech you, That are of suppler joints, follow them swiftly, And hinder them from what this ecstasy May now provoke them to. Adr.
Follow, I pray you.
SCENE I. Before PROSPERO's Cell.
Enter PROSPERO, FERDINAND, and MIRANDA.
Pro. If I have too austerely punish'd you,
11 The natives of Africa have been supposed to possess the secret how to temper poisons with such art as not to operate till several years after they were administered. Their drugs were then as certain in their effect as subtle in their preparation.
12 Shakespeare uses ecstasy for any temporary alienation of mind, a fit, or madness; as in Hamlet :
“ That unmatch'd form and feature of blown youth,
Blasted with ecstasy; ” and
6. This bodiless creation ecstasy
Hast strangely stood the test : here, afore Heaven,
I do believe it,
Pro. Then, as my gift, and thine own acquisition Worthily purchas’d, take my daughter : But If thou dost break her virgin knot' before All sanctimonious ceremonies may With full and holy rite be minister'd, No sweet aspersion ? shall the heavens let fall To make this contract grow; but barren hate, Sour-ey'd disdain, and discord, shall bestrew The union of your bed with weeds so loathly, That you shall hate it both : therefore, take heed, As Hymen's lamps shall light you. Fer.
As I hope For quiet days, fair issue, and long life, With such love as 'tis now; the murkiest den, The most opportune place, the strong'st sugges
tion Our worser Genius can, shall never melt Mine honour into lust; to take away The edge of that day's celebration, When I shall think, or Phæbus' steeds are founder'd, Or night kept chain'd below. Pro.
| The same expression occurs in Pericles. Mr. Henley says that it is a manifest allusion to the zones of the ancients, which were worn as guardians of chastity before marriage.
? Aspersion is here used in its primitive sense of sprinkling : at present it is used in its figurative sense of throwing out hints of calumny and detraction. 3 Suggestion here means temptation or wicked prompting.