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Might be affronted with the match' and weight
CRES. In that I'll war with you.
O virtuous fight,
· Might be affronted with the match-] I wish “ my integrity might be met and matched with such equality and force of pure unmingled love." Johnson. So, in Hamlet :
that he, as 'twere by accident, may here “ Affront Ophelia." STEVENS. And simpler than the infancy of truth.] This is fine; and means, “ Ere truth, to defend itself against deceit in the commerce of the world, had, out of necessity, learned worldly policy.” WARBURTON.
compare,] i. e. comparison. So Milton, Paradise Lost, B. III: Beyond compare the son of God was seen
STEEVENS. * True swains in love shall, in the world to come,
Approve their truths by Troilus : when their rhymes,
Want similes, truth tir'd with iteration,–] The metre, as well as the sense, of the last verse, will be improved, I think, by reading :
" Want similes of truth, tird with iteration," So, a little lower in the same speech:
Yet after all comparisons of truth. Tyrwhitt. This is a very probable conjecture. Truth at present has no verb to which it can relate. MALONE.
As true as steel, as plantage to the moon,
• As true as steel,] As true as steel is an ancient proverbial simile. I find it in Lydgate's Troy Book, where he speaks of Troilus, L. II. c. xvi: “ Thereto in love trewe as any
stele.” Virgil, Æneid VII. 640, applies a similar epithet to a sword:
- fidoque accingitur ense.” i. e. a weapon in the metal of which he could confide ; a trusty blade. It should be observed, however, that Geo. Gascoigne, in his Steele Glass, 1576, bestows the same character on his Mirrour:
this poore glass which is of trustie steele." Again : that steele both trusty was and true.”
STEEVENS. Mirrors formerly being made of steel, I once thought the meaning might be, “ as true as the mirror, which faithfully exhibits every image that is presented before it.” But I now think with Mr. Šteevens, that-As true as steel was merely a proverbial expression, without any such allusion. A passage in an old piece entitled The Pleasures of Poetry, no date, but printed in the time of Queen Elizabeth, will admit either interpretation :
“ Behold in her the lively glasse,
as plantage to the moon,] Alluding to the common opinion of the influence the moon has over what is planted or sown, which was therefore done in the increase :
“ Rite Latonæ puerum canentes,
WARBURTON. Plantage is not, I believe, a general term, but the herb which we now call plantain, in Latin, plantago, which was, I suppose, imagined to be under the peculiar influence of the moon.
Johnson, Shakspeare speaks of plantain by its common appellation in Romeo and Juliet; and yet, in Sapho and Phao, 1591, Man. drake is called Mandrage :
“ Sow next thy vines mandrage." From a book entitled The profitable Art of Gardening, &c. by Tho. Hill, Londoner, the third edition, printed in 1579, I learn, that neither sowing, planting, nor grafting, were ever undertaken without a scrupulous attention to the encrease or waning
As sun to day, as turtle to her mate,
Prophet may you be!
of the moon.-Dryden does not appear to have understood the passage, and has therefore altered it thus :
As true as flowing tides are to the moon. STEEVENS. This may be fully illustrated by a quotation from Scott's Discoverie of Witchcraft: “ The poore husbandman perceiveth that the increase of the moone maketh plants frutefull: so as in the full moone they are in the best strength; decaieing in the wane ; and in the conjunction do utterlie wither and vade.”
FARMER, ? As iron to adamant, ] So, in Greene's Tu Quoque, 1614;
« As true to thee as steel to adamant." MALONE. * As truth's authentick author to be cited,] Troilus shall crown the verse, as a man to be cited as the authentick author of truth ; as one whose protestations were true to a proverb.
JOHNSON, crown up
the verse,] i.e. conclude it. Finis coronat opus. So, in Chapman's version of the second Iliad: “ We fie, not putting on the crowne of our so long-held
STEEVENS. ! And blind oblivion swallow'd cities up,] So, in King Richard III. quarto, 1598:
“ And almost shoulder'd in this swallowing gulph
“ Of blind forgetfulness and dark oblivion. MALOxe. VOL. XV.
Upbraid my falsehood! when they have said--as
false As air, as water, wind, or sandy earth, As fox to lamb, as wolf to heifer's calf, Pard to the hind, or stepdame to her son ; Yea, let them say, to stick the heart of falsehood, As false as Cressid.”
PAN. Go to, a bargain made : seal it, seal it; I'll be the witness.--Here I hold your hand; here,
cousin's. If ever you prove false one to another, since I have taken such pains to bring you together, let all pitiful goers-between be called to the world's end after my name, call them all Pandars; let all constant men be Troiluses, all false
when their rhymes,
As false as Cressid.] This antithesis of praise and censure appears to have found an imitator in Edmund Smith, the author of Phædra and Hippolytus :
66 Theseus. “ And when aspiring bards, in daring strains, “ Shall raise some matron to the heavenly powers, “ They'll say, she's great, she's true, she's chaste as
Phædra. “ Phædra. “ And when th’avenging muse with pointed rage, “ Would sink some impious woman down to hell, They'll say, she's false, she's base, she's foul as Phædra."
Act V. STEEVENS. constant men--] Though Sir T. Hanmer's emendation (inconstant] be plausible, I believe Shakspeare wroteconstant. He seems to have been less attentive to make Pandar talk consequentially, than to account for the ideas actually annexed to the three names. Now it is certain that, in his time, a Troilus was as clear an expression for a constant lover, as a Cressida and a Pandar were for a jilt and a pimp.