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of the two names of George Wilkins, living at, or near, the same time; and to which of them "The Painful Adventures of Pericles," as well as other productions, belong, it is impossible now to determine. If George Wilkins, “the Poet," died of the plague in August, 1603, it would be singular that he should be the author of a dateless tract called “The Three Miseries of BarbaryPlague, Famine, Civill Warre;” and impossible that he should have joined with John Day and William Rowley in the composition of the play, printed in 1607, under the title of “The Travels of three English Brothers, Sir Thomas, Sir Anthony, and Sir Robert Shirley.” It would also be highly improbable that he should have written “The Miseries of Enforced Marriage " before mentioned, unless it had been acted some years before it was printed. Various dramatic authors and actors lived in Holywell Street and its vicinity; and it would not surprise us if the two persons named George Wilkins were father and son, and that the father, who we may suppose died in 1603, had previously, in some way, earned the designation of “poet,” given to him in the parish register, which, perhaps, his son better deserved, as the author of later and more popular productions.
For particular verbal, and other, elucidations of Shakespeare's text, derived from “The Painful Adventures of Pericles,” 4to, 1608, we must refer the reader to our foot-notes.
It will have been remarked, that the novel states that“ Pericles” had been “lately presented," and on the title-page of the edition of 1609 it is termed “ the late, and much-admired Play called Pericles:" it is, besides, spoken of as “a new play,” in a poetical tract called "Pimlico or Run Redeap," printed in 1609. Another piece, called "Shore," is mentioned in “ Pimlico," under exactly similar circumstances: there was an older drama upon the story of Jane Shore, and this, like "Pericles," had, perhaps, about the same date, been revived at one of the theatres.
Pericles was five times printed before it was inserted in the folio of 1664, viz. in 1609, 1611, 1619, 1630, and 1635. The folio seems to have been copied from the last of these, with a multiplication of errors, but with some corrections. The first edition of 1609 was obviously brought out in haste, and there are many corruptions in it; but more pains were taken with it than Malone, Steevens, and others imagined: they never compared different copies of the same edition, or they would have seen that the impressions vary importantly, and that several mistakes, discovered as the play went through the press, were carefully set rigbt: these will be found pointed out in our notes.
ANTIOCHUS, King of Antioch.
two Lords of Tyre.
The Daughter of Antiochus.
Lords, Ladies, Knights, Gentlemen, Sailors, Pirates, Fishermen
and Messengers, &c.
1 The play in the folio, 1664, is followed by a defective list of persons, under the title of “The Actors' Names.” A regular Dramatis Personæ is also, most unusually, prefixed to Wilkins' novel, under the heading “ The names of the Personages mentioned in this Historie.” They accord, very nearly, with the characters in the play; but Gower is there called “ The Presenter.” See “Mid
; summer Night's Dream,” A. v. sc. I, Vol. ii. p. 245.
PRINCE OF TYRE.
Before the Palace of Antioch.
Enter GOWER, as Chorus.
To sing a song that old was sung,
up this city for his chiefest seat,
1 - and holy ALES,] Every old copy, 4to. and folio, has “ holy-days ;” but as the speech was no doubt meant to rhyme, we have adopted Dr. Farmer's amendment: by “holy ales," what were called church ales were probably intended.
* The PURPOSE is] In all the old copies it stands, “ The purchase is ;' and it may possibly be right, taking purchase in the sense of prize or reward.
The fairest in all Syria ;
Antioch. A Room in the Palace.
Enter ANTIOCHUS, PERICLES, and Attendants.
took a FEERE,] i. e. A companion or wife: the word also occurs for a husband in “ Titus Andronicus,” A. iv. sc. 1, Vol. v. p. 56.
4 By custom] “ But custom in the old copies; and in the next line, account'd for “ account."
5 As yond' grim looks do testify.] Referring to the heads of the unsuccessful suitors, exhibited to the audience over the gates of the palace at Antioch. That such was the case we have the evidence of the novel, founded upon the play, published under the title of “ The Painfull Adventures of Pericles Prince of Tyre," 1608, where the heading of the first chapter ends thus:--"placing their heads on the top of his castle gate, whereby to astonish all others that came to attempt the like." Possibly we ought to read admonish for “ astonish.”.
Per. I have, Antiochus, and with a soul
Ant. Bring in our daughter, clothed like a bride,
Enter the Daughter of ANTIOCHUS.
Ant. Prince Pericles,—
Ant. Before thee stands this fair Hesperides',
6 Music.] In every old copy, this word, which is evidently a stage-direction, is made part of the text, at the commencement of the speech of Antiochus. All that was meant seems to have been, that the daughter entered while the music was played : she was introduced by music.
7 For The embracements] All the old copies omit “ the.”
8 Sorrow were ever ras’d,] In the 4to, 1609, it is “ Sorrow were ever racte;" which later editions altered to rackt, mistaking the word.
such a BOUNDLESS happiness !] The old editions, anterior to that of Rowe, by a misprint, have “bondless happiness.”
1 — this fair HESPERIDES,] Meaning the garden of Hesperus, not the daughters appointed to watch over the golden apples. • Shakespeare has before spoken of them in the same manner (“Love's Labour's Lost," A. iv. sc. 3, Vol. ii. p. 145), which was usual with poets of his day.