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Imo. Why did you throw your wedded lady from
you? Think, that you are upon a rock; and now Throw me again.
[Embracing him. Post. Hang there like fruit, my soul, Till the tree die! Cym.
How now! my flesh, my child ?
What! mak'st thou me a dullard in this act !
Your blessing, sir. [Kneclias Bel. Though you did love this youth, I blame
ye not; You had a motive fort.
[To GUIDERIUS and ARVIRAGUS
My tears that fall,
I am sorry for't, my lord.
My lord, Now fear is from me, I'll speak troth. Lord Cloten, Upon my lady's missing, came to me With his sword drawn; foam'd at the mouth, and
swore, If I discover'd not which way she was gone, It was my instant death. By accident, I had a feigned letter of my master's Then in my pocket, which directed him To seek her on the mountains near to Milford; Where, in a frenzy, in my master's garments, Which he inforc'd from me, away he posts With unchaste purpose, and with oath to violate My lady's honour: what became of him, I further know not. Gui.
Let me end the story. I slew him there.
Cym. Marry, the gods forefend! I would not thy good deeds should from my lips Pluck a hard sentence: pr’ythee, valiant youth, Deny't again.
Gui. I have spoke it, and I did it.
Gui. A most uncivil one. The wrongs he did me
I am sorry for thee: By thine own tongue thou art condemn'd, and must Endure our law. Thou art dead. Imo.
That headless man
Bind the offender,
Stay, sir king.
[To the Guard. They were not born for bondage. Сут.
Why, old soldier,
Arv. In that he spake too far.
O! what am I ut I will prove that two on's are as good
A mother to the birth of three? Ne'er mother s I have given out him.-My sons, I must
Rejoic'd deliverance more.-Bless'd pray you be, or mine own part unfold a dangerous speech, That after this strange starting from your orbs, "hough, haply, well for you.
You may reign in them now.-0 Imogen! Aru.
Your danger's ours.
Thou hast lost by this a kingdom. Gui. And our good his.
No, my lord; Bel.
Have at it, then, by leave. I have got two worlds by't.-0, my gentle brothers ! Thou hadst, great king, a subject, who was callid Have we thus met? O! never say hereafter, Belarius.
But I am truest speaker: you call'd me brother, Cym. What of him ? he is
When I was but your sister; I you brothers, banish'd traitor.
When you were so indeed.
Did you e'er meet? Assum'd this age: indeed, a banish'd man;
Arv. Ay, my good lord. know not how, a traitor.
And at first meeting lov'd Cym. Take him hence.
Continued so, until we thought he died.
Cor. By the queen's dram she swallow'd.
O rare instinct! First pay me for the nursing of thy sons;
When shall I hear all through? This fierce abridgAnd let it be confiscate all, so soon
ment As I have receiv'd it.
Hath to it circumstantial branches, which
Distinction should be rich in.—Where? how liv'd Bel. I am too blunt, and saucy; here's my knee:
you ? Ere I arise, I will preser my sons;
And when came you to serve our Roman captive ? Then, spare not the old father. Mighty sir, How parted with your brothers ? how first met ihem? These two young gentlemen, that call me father, Why fled you from the court, and whither? These, And think they are my sons, are none of mine: And your three motives to the battle, with They are the issue of your loins, my liege,
I know not how much more, should be demanded, And blood of your begetting.
And all the other by-dependencies, Cym.
How! my issue? From chance to chance; but nor the time, por place, Bel. So sure as you your father's. I, old Morgan, Will serve our long inter'gatories. See, Am that Belarius whom you sometime banish'd : Posthumus anchors upon Imogen; Your pleasure was my mere offence, my punishment And she, like harmless lightning, throws her eye Itself, and all my treason; that I suffer'd
On him, her brothers, me, her master, hitting Was all the harm I did. These gentle princes Each object with a joy : the counterchange (For such, and so they are) these twenty years
Is severally in all. Let's quit this ground, Have I train'd up; those arts they have, as I And smoke the temple with our sacrifices.Could put into them: my breeding was, sir, as Thou art my brother: so we'll hold thee ever. Your highness knows. Their nurse, Euriphile,
[To BELARIUS. Whom for the theft I wedded, stole these children Imo. You are my father, too; and did relieve me, Upon my banishment: I mov'd her to't;
To see this gracious season. Having receiv'd the punishment before,
All o'erjoyed, For that which I did then: beaten for loyalty
Save these in bonds : let them be joyful too, Excited me to treason. Their dear loss,
For they shall taste our comfort. The more of you 'twas felt, the more it shap'd
My good master, Unto my end of stealing them. But, gracious sir,
I will yet do
service. Here are your sons again; and I must lose
Happy be you! Two of the sweet'st companions in the world.
Cym. The forlorn soldier, that so nobly fought, The benediction of these covering heavens
He would have well becom'd this place, and grac'd Fall on their heads like dew! for they are worthy The thankings of a king. To inlay heaven with stars.
The soldier that did company these three The service, that you three have done, is more In poor beseeming: 'twas a fitment for Unlike than this thou tell'st. I lost my children: The purpose I then follow'd.—That I was he, If these be they, I know not how to wish
Speak, Iachimo: I had you down, and might A pair of worthier sons.
Have made you finish.
I am down again ; This gentleman, whom I call Polydore,
(Kneeling. Most worthy prince, as your's is true Guiderius: But now my heavy conscience sinks my knee, This gentleman, my Cadwal, Arviragus,
As then your force did. Take that life, beseech you, Your younger princely son: he, sir, was lapp'd Which I so often owe; but your ring first, In a most curious mantle, wrought by the hand And here the bracelet of the truest princess, Of his queen mother, which, for more probation, That ever swore her faith. I can with ease produce.
Kneel not to me:
The power that I have on you is to spare you; Upon his neck a mole, a sanguine star:
The malice towards you to forgive you. Live, It was a mark of wonder.
And deal with others better.
Pardon's the word to all.
You holp us, sir,
As you did mean indeed to be our brother;
Sooth. The lofty cedar, royal Cymbeline, Joy'd are we, that you are.
Personates thee; and thy lopp'd branches point Post. Your servant, princes.—Good my lord of Thy two sons forth; who, by Belarius stolen, Rome,
For many years thought dead, are now revird, Call forth your soothsayer. As I slept, methought, To the majestic cedar join'd, whose issue Great Jupiter, upon his eagle back'd,
Promises Britain peace and plenty. Appear'd to me, with other spritely shows
Well, Of mine own kindred: when I wak'd, I found My peace we will begin.—And, Caius Lucius, This label on my bosom; whose containing Although the victor, we submit to Cæsar, Is so from sense in hardness, that I can
And to the Roman empire ; promising Make no collection of it: let him show
To pay our wonted tribute, from the which His skill in the construction.
We were dissuaded by our wicked queen; Luc.
Whom heavens, in justice, both on her and hers, Sooth. Here, my good lord. [Coming forward. Have laid most heavy hand. Luc.
Read, and declare the meaning. Sooth. The fingers of the powers above do tuge Sooth. [Reads.] “ When as a lion's whelp shall,
The harmony of this peace. The vision, to himself unknown, without seeking find, and be
Which I made known to Lucius ere the stroke embraced by a piece of tender air; and when from
Of this yet scarce-cold battle, at this instant a stately cedar shall be lopped branches, which be
Is full accomplish'd; for the Roman eagle, ing dead many years shall after revive, be jointed
From south to west on wing soaring aloft, to the old stock, and freshly grow, then shall Pos- Lessen'd herself, and in the beams o' the sun thumus end his miseries, Britain be fortunate, and
So vanish’d: which foreshow'd our princely eagle, flourish in peace and plenty."
Th' imperial Cæsar, should again unite
His favour with the radiant Cymbeline, Thou, Leonatus, art the lion's whelp;
Which shines here in the west. The fit and apt construction of thy name,
Laud we the gods; Being Leo-natus, doth import so much.
And let our crooked smokes climb to their postrils The piece of tender air, thy virtuous daughter, From our bless'd altars. Publish we this peace
[To CYMBELINE. To all our subjects. Set we forward. Let Which we call mollis aer; and mollis aer
A Roman and a British ensign wave We term it mulier: which mulier, I divine, Friendly together; so through Lud's town march, Is this most constant wife; who, even now,
And in the temple of great Jupiter Answering the letter of the oracle,
Our peace we'll ratify; seal it with feasts.Unknown to you, unsought, were clipp'd about Set on there.- Never was a war did cease, With this most tender air.
Ere bloody hands were wash'd, with such a peace. Сут. .
This hath some seeming.
ACT I.-SCENE I.
understand what can be meant by “joining his honour
against, etc., with, etc.” Perhaps Shakespeare wrote"- our bloods
- did join his banner. No more obey the heavens, than our courtiers
In the last scene of the play, Cymbeline proposes that Still seem as does the king."
“a Roman and a British ensignshould wave together. The passage in the original edition (of 1623) stands thus:
"To his protection; calls him Posthumus Leonatus." You do not meet a man but frowns.
“So the folio. The modern editors have rejected the Our bloods no more obey the heavens
second name, reading-
To his protection; calls him Posthumus.
This appears to have been done to make a line of ten posed various emendations, which may be found in dif
syllables—as if dramatic rhythm had no irregularities, ferent editions. The present text is that proposed by they have destroyed the sense. The name of PosthuTyrwhitt, and adopted by the later editors, which gives
mus Leonatus was given to connect the child with the a good sense, though in harsh and abrupt language, such memory of his father, and to mark the circumstance of as Shakespeare's desire of condensing his meaning often
his being born after his father's death."-Knight. leads him to use. By reading king, for king's, all other alteration is avoided. The meaning then is–Our natu
" A glass that FEATED them"— The adjective "feat" ral feelings are not more influenced by the heavens, than
was in common use for neat, fine, elegant; whence
Shakespeare seems to have made for his own use the our courtiers are by the king's humour, seeming like
verb to feat, which is found in no other author. “He him, and frowning when he frowns; or, as it is after
was a glass that gave elegance to the maturer persons wards expressed :
who used it:" as Hotspur, in Henry IV., is said to be- they wear their faces to the bent
— the glass Of the king's looks.
Wherein the noble youth did dress themselves. " — His father
“ Here comes the gentleman”—The most important Was call's Sicilius, who did join his honour," etc.
person (as to this conversation) who was coming, is "Tenantius was the father of Cymbeline, and nephew Posthumus, “ the gentleman." Some editors, however, of Cassibelan, being the younger son of Cassibelan's elder drop him, readingbrother Lud, on whose death Cassibelan was admitted
We must forbear; here comes the queen, and princess. king. He repulsed the Romans on their first attack ;
With Mr. Knight, we can find no justification for but, being vanquished on Cæsar's second invasion, he agreed to pay an annual tribute to Rome. After his
"such capricious alterations of the text." death, Tenantius, Lud's younger son, (the elder brother,
SCENE II. Androgeus, having fled to Rome,) was established on the throne, of which they had been deprived by their uncle. “ Enter the Queen, PosthumUs, and Imogen." According to some authorities, Tenantius quietly paid the tribute stipulated by Cassibelan: according to others,
“ Hollingshed's Chronicle' probably supplied Shakehe refused to pay it, and warred with the Romans.
speare with the beautiful name •Imogen. In the old Shakespeare supposes the last account to be the true
black letter, it is scarcely distinguishable from ‘Innogen,' one.”—MALONE.
the wife of Bruto, King of Britain. From the same
source, the Poet may have derived the name of Cloten, "— who did join his Honour"—I do not (says Stevens) who, when the line of Brute became extinct, was one of the five kings that governed Britain. Cloten, or
SCENE V. Cloton, was King of Cornwall. Leonatus is a name in Sydney's · Arcadia.' It is that of the legitimate son of "Enter PHILARIO, Iachimo, a Frenchman, a Dutchman, the blind King of Paphlagonia, on whose story is formed
and a Spaniard." the episode of Gloster, Edgar, and Edmund, in Lear."
This is the original stage-direction, though some of Illust. Shak.
the characters are mute: it is meant to show that this “I'll fetch a turn”—This is a pure and usual old conversation occurs among strangers casually met at English phrase, now, like much more of the old Saxon Rome. It has been observed that the behaviour of the part of our language, banished from polite use. It is Spaniard and the Dutchman, who are stated to be present retained only in cockney or London dialect, in which during this animated scene, is in humorous accordance fetch a walk is universal. Yet Milton has in poetry,
with the apathy and taciturnity usually attributed to * fetch a round."
their countrymen. Neither the Don or Mynheer utters
a syllable. “What was Imogen to them, or they to “But he does buy my injuries to be friends." Imogen,” that they should speak of her ? “This sentence is obscure ; but the meaning of the " — words him, I doubt not, a great deal from the crafty Queen appears to be, that the kindness of her
matter"-Makes the description of him very distant husband, even when she is doing him wrong, purchases || from the truth.—Singer. injuries as if they were benefits."-Knight.
“ – taking a beggar without less quality"- This is “- sear up my embracements”-Shakespeare poeti. the reading of all the old copies, from the first, until cally calls the cere-cloths, in which the dead are wrap
Rowe altered it to more. But the old reading is one ped, the bonds of death. There was no distinction in of those double negatives, so common in old English ancient orthography between seare, to dry, to wither; authors, and still used intelligibly enough colloquially, and seare, to dress or cover with wax. Cere-cloth is and understood as merely strengthening the affirmation. most frequently spelled seare-cloth. In HAMLET we Posthumus, he says, is rated above his true worth, to have
vindicate Imogen's choice, which would otherwise be Why thy canonized bones, hearsed in death,
held in contempt, for taking a beggar with any less Have burst their cerements?
quality than that thus kindly ascribed to Posthumus. “While sense can keep it on"-i. e. while I have
" Or if there were wealth enough"-So all the fosensation to retain it. There can be no doubt that it lios: "oris here obviously to be taken in the sense of refers to the ring, and it is equally obvious that thee
either—“either if there were,” &c. The use of “or" would have been more proper. Whether this error is
in this manner is scriptural, and it is also that of some to be laid to the Poet's charge or to that of careless
of the best writers of the time. printing, it would not be easy to decide. Malone, how
"- on the APPROBATIos of what I have spoke"-i. e. ever, has shown that there are many passages in these
On the proof. As in HENRY V.:plays of equally loose construction.-Singer.
- how many now in health
Shall drop their blood in approbation “ A year's age on me”—The sense seems clear enough.
Of what your reverence shall incite us to. The aged king, to whom every added year is a serious burden, tells his daughter that in her present act of fond
SCENE VII. sorrow, she takes away a year of his life. The editors are not satisfied with this, and Warburton proposes, “ Which seasons comfort"-"Seasons" is a verb, with his accustomed fertility-A yare (speedy) age upon and used as in Hamlet, “My blessing season this, i. e. me. Hanmer reads-Many a year's age, which Stevens give it added zest or relish. The mean have their honprefers. Johnson prefers-Years, ages, on me.
est, homely wills—opposed to the desire that's glorious,
and that circumstance gives a relish to comfort. " And did avoid a PuTTOCK"—"A puttock" is a kite or a hawk of a worthless breed.
- your TRUST"_"Imogen here breaks off in read
ing the letter of Leonatus. That which is addressed to “ A man worth any woman; overbuys me her in the tenderness of affection is not read aloud.” Almost the sum he pays."
Unmindful of this, the passage has been altered into · ReThat is—the most minute portion of his worth would fect upon him accordingly, as you value your truesi be too high a price for the wise he has purchased by Leonatus.'. The signature is separated from the word paying himself to her,
which has been changed to truest, by the passage which
Imogen glances at in thankful silence."-Knight.
"- the UNNUMBER'd beach”—The old editors from "— if he should write,
the first all read the number'd beach-which gives no And I not have it, 'twere a paper lost," etc.
probable sense, even allowing that numbered may mean,
as Johnson suggested, numerous, a meaning of which i The meaning (says Stevens) is, that the loss of that know no other example. Warburton proposes humbled, paper would prove as fatal to her (Imogen) as the loss and Coleridge umbred, from the brown colour. Theoof a pardon to a condemned criminal. A thought resem- bald's correction of “unnumber'd" seems to me so clearly bling this occurs in All's WELL THAT Ends Well:- the word, that I have not hesitated to substitute it in the Like a remorseful pardon slowly carried.
text, which none of the later editors have done, though
several have allowed its probability. The error is pre"- voilk this eye or ear"-In the folios, “ with his eye or ear;" but the eye or ear which was to distinguish might most easily fall into, and the phrase in this appli
cisely such a one as a printer or a copyist of manuscript Posthumus was that of Pisanio. It was, doubtless, an
cation derives support from its use in the same way in error of the press. Coleridge recommends the substitu- LEAR:tion of the for his; but it seems more likely that the
- the surge letter t had dropped out.
That on the unnumbered idle pebbles chases. “ With his next vanTAGE"-i. e. opportunity.
Twinned is a bold but not unexampled phrase, to ex
press close resemblance, as in Beaumont and Fletcher :“Betwixt two CHARMING vords"- The old meaning
- is it possible that two faces of to “charm" was to enchant, and in this sense was
Should be so twinned in form, complexion? used by Imogen in this passage: she would have set the The whole passage, then, may be thus paraphrasedkiss “betwixt two charming words," in order to secure Can men's eyes distinguish between the fiery orbs above “her interest” from “the shes of Italy."
and the pebbles of the shore, so much resembling each