Imatges de pàgina
PDF

that occurs in Law-tricks, &c. 1608. Again, in our author's Antony and Cleopatra : & 4 Julius Caesar, “Who at Philippi the good Brutus ghosted.” STE Ev ENS,

274. ——a jewel, that too casually Hath left mine arm; | i. e. Too many chances of losing it have arisen from my carelessness. WARBURTON. 309. Or look | This the modern editors had changed into Ere look. Or is used for ere. So Douglas, in his translation of Virgil: & & sufferit he also, “Or he his goddes brocht in Latio.”

[ocr errors]

320. ——mingled with their courages—] The old folio has this odd reading : —Their discipline, (Now wing-led with their courages) will make known. Johnson. Their discipline, Now wing-led with their courages, May mean their discipline borrowing wings from their courage; i. e. their military knowledge being ani

mated by their natural bravery. STE E v ENs. 321. To their approvers, i. e. To those who try them. WARB U R To N.

338. Post.] I think this speech should be given to Philario. Posthumus was employed in reading his

letters. STE Ev ENs. 382. And Cydnus swell'd above the banks, or for The press of boats, or pride :- J This lan

guage is such as a skilful villain would naturally use, a mixture of airy triumph and serious deposition. His gaiety shews his seriousness to be without anxiety, and his seriousness proves his gaiety to be without art. Johnson. 398. So likely to report themselves — So near to speech. The Italians call a portrait, when the likeness is remarkable, a speaking figure. Johnson. 399. Was, as another nature, dumb ; |The meaning is this: The sculptor was as nature, but as nature dumb ; he gave every thing that nature gives, but

breath and motion. In breath is included speech. Johnson.

407. ——nicely Depending on their brands.] I am not sure that I understand this passage. Perhaps Shakspere meant, that the figures of the Cupids were nicely poized on their inverted torches, one of the legs of each being taken off the ground, which might render such a support necessary. STE evens. I have equal diffidence with Mr. Steevens in explaining this passage. Here seems to be a kind of tautology. I take brands to be a part of the andirons, on which the wood for the fire was supported; as the upper part, in which was a kind of rack to carry a spit, is more properly named the andiron. These irons, on which the wood lies across, generally called dogs, are here termed brands. WHAL LeY. 409. This is her honour !—

Let it be granted, you have seen all this, &c.] The expression is ironical. Iachimo relates many particulars, to which Posthumus answers with impatience,

This is her honour!

That is, And the attainment of this knowledge is to

pass for the corruption of her honour. Joh N so N. 4 14- if you can,

Be pale —j If you can forbear to

flush your cheek with rage. Joh N so N.

433. —The vows of women, &c.] The love vowed by women no more abides with him to whom it is vowed, than women adhere to their virtue. Johnson.

448.

I’m sure,

She could not lose it : her attendants are

All sworn, and honourable:—They induc’d to

steal it !

And by a stranger ?–No: 1 The absurd conclusions of jealousy are here admirably painted and exposed. Posthumus, on the credit of a bracelet, and an oath of the party concerned, judges, against all appearances from the intimate knowledge of his wife's honour, that she was false to his bed; and grounds that judgment, at last, upon much less appearances of the lionour of her attendants. . WAR BURTON. . . . - Pier Her attendants are all sworn and honourable.] It was anciently the custom for the attendants on our nobility and other great personages (as it is now for the servants of the king), to take an oath of fidelity on their entrance into office. In the household book of the 5th earl of Northumberland (compiled A. D. 1512.) it is expressly ordered [page 49] that “what person soever he be that comyth to my Lordes service, that incontynent after he be entered in the chequyrroull [checkroll] that he be sworn in the countyng hous by a gentillman-usher or yeman-usher in the presence of the hede officers; and on theire absence before the clerke of the kechynge, either by such an oath as is in the Book of Othes, yf any such [oath] be, or ells by such an oth as shall seyme beste to their discrecion.”

Even now every servant of the king's, at his first appointment, is sworn in, before a gentleman-usher,

at the lord chamberlain's office. PERC Y. 452. The cognizance—] The badge; the token; the visible proof. JoHN son.

463. (Worthy the pressing)–1 Thus the modern editions. The old folio reads, (Worthy her pressing)— Jo HNson. 488. Is there no way, &c..] Milton was very probably indebted to this speech for one of the sentiments which he has given to Adam. Paradise Lost, B. X. 4 & O why did God, “Creator wise, that peopled highest heaven “With spirits masculine, create at last “This novelty on earth, this fair defect D to Of

are “Of nature, and not fill the world at once “With men as angels without feminine, “Or find some other way to generate ** Mankind 9” See also Rhodomont’s invective against women in the Orlando Furioso; and above all, a speech which Euripedes has put into the mouth of Hippolitus, in the Tragedy that bears his name. STE Evens. 496. Me of my lawful pleasure she restrain'd, And pray'd me, oft, forbearance: did it with A pudency so rosy, the sweet view on’t Might well have warm'd old Saturn ; J It certainly carries with it a very elegant sense, to suppose the lady's denial was so modest and delicate as even to inflame his desires: But may we not read it thus : And pray'd me oft forbearance: Did it, &c. i.e. complied with his desires in the sweetest reserve; taking Did in the acceptation in which it is used by Jonson and Shakspere in many other places. WHA LLEY.

to pray they have their will: The very devils cannot plague them better.] So, in Sir Thomas Moore's Comfort against Tribudation : “God could not lightly do a man a more vengeance, than in this world to grant him his own foolish wishes.” STEE VENS.

521.

ACT

« AnteriorContinua »