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Which, to be spoke, would torture thee.
Iach. I am glad to be constrain'd to utter that, which
I got this ring: 'twas Leonatus' jewel,
Whom thou didst banish; and (which more may grieve thee, As it doth me) a nobler sir ne'er liv'd
"Twixt sky and ground. Wilt thou hear more, my lord?
Cym. All that belongs to this.
That paragon, thy daughter,
For whom my heart drops blood, and my false spirits
Quail to remember,-Give me leave; I faint.
Cym. My daughter! what of her? Renew thy strength:
Those which I heav'd to head) the good Posthumus,
For beauty, that made barren the swell'd boast
A shop of all the qualities that man
Loves woman for; besides that hook of wiving,
Come to the matter.
I stand on fire.
9 Torments me to conceal.] We may be confident that the word "which," before "Torments," made its way into the text by corruption: it is not required for meaning or measure: the poet must have written,
"I am glad to be constrain'd to utter that
Torments me to conceal."
A most usual poetical elision, but we have no warrant to omit "which."
straight-PIGHT Minerva,] "Pight" is pitched or fixed. See Vol. iv. p. 594, and Vol. v. p. 649: “straight-pight" therefore seems to mean, standing upright in a fixed posture, and with this sense the compound epithet has great appropriateness to Minerva. "Brief nature," in the next line, means brieflyworking nature-nature hasty in her composition of mere human beings.
Unless thou wouldst grieve quickly.-This Posthumus,
(Most like a noble lord in love, and one
That had a royal lover) took his hint;
And, not dispraising whom we prais'd, (therein
He was as calm as virtue) he began
His mistress' picture; which by his tongue being made,
Were crack'd of kitchen trulls, or his description
Nay, nay, to the purpose.
Iach. Your daughter's chastity-there it begins.
In suit the place of his bed, and win this ring
Than I did truly find her, stakes this ring;
Of Phoebus' wheel'; and might so safely, had it
'Twixt amorous and villainous. Being thus quench'd
By wounding his belief in her renown
And would so, had it been a carbuncle
Of Phoebus' wheel;] In "Antony and Cleopatra," A. iv. sc. 8 (this Vol. p. 220), we read of the carbuncles "in Phoebus' holy car," which, in the corr. fo. 1632, is Phoebus' glowing car," but we have continued the original epithet in our text. It is singular that Mr. Singer, very appositely quoting the passage in "Antony and Cleopatra," as a note here to "Cymbeline," omits both "holy " and glowing, merely giving "Like Phoebus' car." Perhaps he did not approve of "holy" (though he inserts it elsewhere), and could not make up his mind to print glowing, as it stands in the corr. fo. 1632.
With tokens thus, and thus; averring notes
Ay, so thou dost,
Italian fiend!-Ah me! most credulous fool,
That's due to all the villains past, in being,
That all the abhorred things o' the earth amend,
Be villainy less than 'twas!-Oh Imogen!
Peace, my lord! hear, hear '!
Post. Shall's have a play of this ?—Thou scornful page, There lie thy part.
[Striking her she falls3.
Oh, gentlemen! help,
Mine, and your mistress.-Oh, my lord Posthumus!
Does the world go round?
Post. How come these staggers on me?
2 (Oh cunning, how I got IT!)] "It," required by the sense and metre, was added in the folio, 1632; and, of course, in the two later folios.
3 Some upright JUSTICER!] The commentators have various notes and quotations upon "justicer" to show that it was an antiquated word;" as if it had not been already used by Shakespeare three, if not four, times in "King Lear." HEAR, HEAR!] It may perhaps be doubted whether Imogen does not mean here, here! intending to avow herself to Posthumus.
Striking her she falls.] This stage-direction was first inserted by Rowe.
Wake, my mistress!
Cym. If this be so, the gods do mean to strike me
To death with mortal joy.
How fares my mistress?
Imo. Oh! get thee from my sight;
Thou gav'st me poison: dangerous fellow, hence!
Breathe not where princes are.
The tune of Imogen!
The gods throw stones of sulphur on me, if
It poison'd me.
I left out one thing which the queen confess'd,
Do their due functions.-Have you ta'en of it?
There was our error.
This is, sure, Fidele.
Imo. Why did you throw your wedded lady from you?
Think, that you are upon a rock; and now
Throw me again.
Till the tree die!
Hang there like fruit, my soul,
6 TO TEMPER poisons for her;] To "temper" does not here mean merely to prepare or compound poisons, but to render them of the peculiar strength the queen might require.
How now! my flesh, my child?
What! mak'st thou me a dullard in this act'?
Wilt thou not speak to me?
Your blessing, sir.
Bel. Though you did love this youth, I blame ye not;
You had a motive for't.
Prove holy water on thee!
Thy mother's dead.
[To GUIDERIUS and ARVIRAGUS.
My tears that fall
I am sorry for't, my lord.
Cym. Oh! she was naught; and 'long of her it was,
That we meet here so strangely: but her son
Is gone, we know not how, nor where.
Now fear is from me, I'll speak troth.
Upon my lady's missing, came to me
With his sword drawn; foam'd at the mouth, and swore,
If I discover'd not which way she was gone,
It was my instant death. By accident,
I had a feigned letter of my master's
Then in my pocket, which directed him
To seek her on the mountains near to Milford;
I farther know not.
I slew him there.
Let me end the story:
Marry, the gods forefend!
I would not thy good deeds should from my lips
Were nothing prince-like; for he did provoke me
With language that would make me spurn the sea,
If it could so roar to me. I cut off's head;
And am right glad he is not standing here
7 What! mak'st thou me a DULLARD in this act?] i. e. Do you treat me in this business as if I were a dolt (perhaps the same word as "dullard ")
without sense or interest?