Imatges de pÓgina


Page 2, line last but 4, read, referable, and next line, strike out to the Reader.


95, 1. 20, r. fire-new.

P. 99, 1. laft of the text, r. grofs.

P. 112, 1. laft but one, r. you're.

P. 160, 1. 11, of the fpeech, firft word, for And, r. As.
P. 212, 1. 24, F. proffer.

P. 264, before Scene II. r. A&t IV.

P. 352, 1. laft but 12, for the two last words, r. an in—,
P. 354, 1. 28, after fifters put a period.

P. 382, 1. last but one, after fuck, add a, and last word, for they,

r. when.

P. 440, 1. 5, r. fit.

P. 458, 1. laft but 12, r. lachrymose.

P. 255, 1. 18, r. bays.




Dramatis Perfonæ.


ALONZO, King of Naples.

SEBASTIAN, his Brother.

FERDINAND, Son to the King of Naples.

PROSPERO, rightful Duke of Milan.

GONZALO, an honeft old Courtier of Naples.

TRINCULO, a Jefter.

ARIEL, an airy Spirit.

CALIBAN, a favage, and deformed Slave.


MIRANDA, Daughter of Profpero.

N. B. It is to be observed, that in this and all the other Dramatis Perfonæ, I infert the names of thofe only whom I have brought upon the Scene, in the course of these remarks, either as speaking themfelves, or being fpoken to by others.

[blocks in formation]



HIS Play, and the Midfummer Night's Dream, which in all the latter editions immediately follows it, are confidered by Dr. Warburton, " as the nobleft effort of that fub"lime and amazing imagination, peculiar to Shakefpeare, which foars above the bounds of Nature, "without forfaking Senfe; or, more properly, car"ries Nature along with it, beyond her terreftrial "limits."

He has, indeed, in both these exhibitions, created Beings out of all vifible exiftence; or, as he has himfelf most beautifully expreffed it,

"Given to airy Nothing

"A local habitation, and a name."

Yet by the powers of his genius has he contrived to make these chimeras of his brain think, act, and speak, in a manner which appears fo fuited to the anomalous perfonages his magic has conjured up, that



we readily adopt them into the scale of Nature, from a prefumption, that were they really to exift, they would probably refemble the characters which his wand has endowed them with.

These two plays are generally fupposed to have been the first and fecond of his writing; though I believe there are no dates remaining, to confirm this opinion; which can therefore be founded only on the idea, that his youthful imagination must naturally be thought to have been more fportive and exuberant, than his riper judgment might have permitted the indulgence of. And here, indeed,

"She wantons, as in her prime,

"And plays at will her virgin fancies :"

though, if I may be allowed the liberty of a criticifm about this matter, I fhould be rather inclined to fuppofe this Play to have been one of his latter performances, as all the unities are fo ftrictly preserved in it.

But though both these pieces poffefs all the lesser merits of poefy, they are not so much fuited to the purpose of my present undertaking, especially the fecond, as feveral others of the fame author; for the most material events, in both, being principally conducted by machinery, or fupernatural agency, produce rather aftonishment than reflection: fo that unless we adopt Dr. Johnson's remark, in the firft fcene of the Tempest," it may be obferved of Gonzalo, that being the only good man that appears with the King, he is "the only one who preferves his chearfulness in the

[ocr errors]

wreck, or his hope on the island," there is not fo much to be collected from them, as I could wish, to be placed to the fcore of Morality. However, all that can be extracted from either, referrible to this head, fhall be diligently pointed out to the reader. With this view I fhall lay the Fable of this Play before my reader, for the fake of the Moral, which may be fo fairly deduced from it.


« AnteriorContinua »