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“ Our Britain's harts die flying, not our men; (49) “ To darkness fleet fouls that fly backwards ! stand; “ Or we are Romans, and will give you that (50) so Like beasts, which you fhun beastly, and may
". fave “ But to look back in frown: stand, stand.”.
These three, Three thousand confident, in act as many; (For three performers are the file, when all The rest do nothing) with this word,“ Stand, stand," Accommodated by the place, (more charming With their own nobleness, which could have turned A distaff to a lance) gilded pale looks; Part shame, part spirit-renewed; that some, turned But by example, (oh, a fin in war, [coward
(49) Our Britains hearts die flying, not our men;] Thus all the editions, and thus Mr l'ope in his Quarto edition, most implicitly obsequious to nonsense. I corrected the pasiage in the appendix to my Seakespeare Restored, as I have now reformed it in the text (and as Dr Thirlby likewife saw it should be); and Mr Pope has followed my correction in his last edition of our Author. --and will give you
But to look back iri front:) Looking back in front is a phrase which Mr Pope, if he pleases, may reserve for his own collection of elegancies; but I cannot admit it to be palmed upon our Author. We mult read with the old copies;
But to look back in frown. i. e. If you will but turn upon the enemy, and shew them you can look angry. So, in the Tempelt;
They being penitent,
Not a frown further.
Damned in the first beginners!) 'gan to look
way that they did, and to grin like lions
The strides they victors made: and now our cowLike fragments in hard voyages, became [ards, The life o' th' need; having found the back door
open Of the unguarded hearts, Heavens, how they wound Some flain before, fome dying; fome, their friends O'er-born i' th former wave; ten, chaced by one, Are now each one the flaughter-man of twenty; T'hofe, that would die or ere resist, are grown The mortal-bugs or 'th' field. ';
Lord. This was strange chance, A narrow lane ! an old
man, and two boys ! Poft. (51) Nay, do but wonder at it; you are
upon't, And vent it for a mockery? here is one : ** Two boys, an old man, (twice a boy,) a•lane, * Preserved the Britons, was the Roinans' bane.'s.
Lord. Nay, be not angry, Sir.
Poft. ’Lack! to what end?
(51) Nay, do not wonder at it, you are made
Ruther to wonder at the things you hear,
Than to work any.) Sure this is moek-reasoning with a vengeance. What! becaufe he was made fitter to wonder at great actions, than to perform any, is he therefore forbid to wonder? I. corrected the passage in the appendix to my Shakspeare Restored; and Mr Pope has followed my correction in his last edition: VOL. X.
For if he'll do as he is made to do,
[Exit. Poft. This is a Lord oh noble misery, To be i' th' field, and ask what news, of me ! *To-day, how many would have given their honours
To've fayed their carcaffes? took heel to do't, And yet died too? I, in mine own woe charmed, Could not find death where I did hear him groan, Nor feel him where he struck. This ugly monster,'Tis strange he hides him in freth. cups, foft beds, Sweet words; or hath more ministers than we, That draw his knives i' th’ war Well, I will
find him, (52) For being now a favourer to the Briton,
-Well, I will find him;
No more a Britain, I've resumed again
The part I came in.) This is a very obfcure passage; and without the helps it would receive from the representation,
wants a little clearing up. Posthumuus comes over with the Roman bands, but rez folved not to fight against his country, he puts the habit of - British peasant over his Italian dress, and does feats of desperation against the Romans, in "hopes of meeting his death from their swords. The fortuneof the day is turned, and the Britons gain the field. Upon this, Posthumus fhifts back into his Italian garb; says he will find death; for though he's now a favourer to the Britons in heart, he'll not .confess himself of that country, but yield himself
a prisoner to the meanest of the vi&or-party, and so fall a facrifice to their resentment. For the captives we find, in the sequel of the play, were by the customs of the Britons to be vicaims to the-manes of those fain on the victors party. That Posthumus does again shift bis habit, is evident from this circumstance'; the Britons furprize him, and asking who he is, he replies;
No more a Briton, I've resumed again
Enter two British Captains, and Soldiers. I Cap: Great Jupiter be praised, Lucius is taken! 'Tis thought, the old man, and his fons, were an
gels. 2 Cap. There was a fourth' man, in a filly habit;
the affront with them... i Cap. So 'is reported; But none of them can be found. Stand, who's
there? Pofti A Roman Who had not now been drooping here, if seconds. Had answered him:.
Cap. Lay hands on him; a dog! A leg of Rome thall not return to tell [service, What crows have pecked them here. He brags his As if he were of note; bring him to th’ King. Enter CYMBELINE, BELAR I US, GUIDERIUS, ARVI
RAGUS, PISANIO, and Roman Captives. The Captains present Posthumus to Cymbeline, who delivers him over to a Goalor. After which, all
Of the old Britons sacrificing captives to Andate, their goddess • of victory, 'many Authors have spoken; and of their custom of burning numbers in their great wicker image, Holinga: thead makes mention; but Sammes, in his Britannia, is para ticularly.copious upon.it.
Scene changes to a Prison. Enter POSTHUMUS, and two Goalers. 1 Goal. You shall not now be stolen, you've locks Só graze as you find pasture. [upon you;
2 Goal. Ay, or stomach. [Exeunt Goalors.
Poft. Most welcome, bondage ! for thou art a way, I think, to liberty; yet am I better Than one that's sick o'th' gout, since he had rather Groan fo in perpetuity than be cured By the fure physician, death; who is the key TƯ unbar those locks. My conscience! thou art
fettered More than my shanks and wrists; you good Gods.
give me The penitent instrument to pick that bolt; Then free for ever. Is't enough I'm sorry? So children temp’ral fathers do appease; Gods are more full of mercy.---.--Must I repent ? I cannot do it better than in gyves, Defired more than constrained; to satisfy, (53)
No ftri&ter render of me than my all.] Nonsense has one happy property, in that one needs not many words to be made fenfible of it; but 'tis, in this respect, like light, perceived as soon as firewn. Such is the y'aring nonsense of these lines. What we can discover from them is this, that the speaker in a fit of penitency towards Heaven, compares his circumstances with a debtor's who is willing to furrender up all to appease his creditor. This being the sense in general, I may venture to say, the true reading must have been thus;
No stricter render of me than my all. 'The verb def is igo frequently used by our Author tą, need any quotations in proof; and surely, here with peculiar