Page images

You shall at least, go see my lord aboard:
For this time, leave me.



Enter Cloten, and two Lords.

i Lord. Sir, I would advise you to shift a shirt; the violence of action hath made you reek as a sacrifice: Where air comes out, air comes in: there's none abroad so wholesome as that you vent.

Clot. If my shirt were bloody, then to shift it Have I hurt him? 2 Lord. No, faith ; not so much as his patience.

[ Afide. i Lord. Hurt him? his body's a passable carcass, if he be not hurt : it is a thorough-fare for steel, if it be not hurt.

2 Lord. His steel was in debt; it went o' the backside the town.

[ Afde. Clot. The villain would not stand me. 2 Lord. No; but he fled forward still, toward

[Afide. i Lord. Stand you! You have land enough of your own: but he added to your having; gave you some ground.

2 Lord. As many inches as you have oceans: Puppies !

[Afide. Clot. I would they had not come between us.

2 Lord. So would I, 'till you had measur'd how long a fool you were upon the ground. [ Aside.

Clot. And that she should love this fellow, and refuse me!

2 Lord. If it be a sin to make a true election, she is damn'd.

[Afide. 03

1 Lord.

your face.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

1 Lord. Sir, as I told you always, ' her beauty and her brain go not together : ? She's a good fign, but I have seen small reflection of her wit.

2 Lord. She shines not upon fools, left the reflection should hurt her.

[Aside. Clot. Come, I'll to my chamber: 'Would there had been some hurt done! 2

Lord. I wish not fo; unless it had been the fall of an ass, which is no great hurt.

[Afide. Clot. You'll go with us? i Lord. I'll attend your lordship. Clot. Nay, come; let's go together. 2 Lord. Well, my lord.




her beauty and her brain, &c.] I believe the lord means to speak a sentence, “ Sir, as I told you always, beauty and brain go not together. JOHNSON.

She's a good fign,-) If sign be the true reading, the poet means by it constellation, and by reflection is meant influence. But I rather think, from the answer, that he wrote fhine. So, in his Venus and Adonis : As if, from thence, they borrowed all their shine.

WARBURTON. There is acuteness enough in this note, yet I believe the poet meant nothing by hgn, but fair outward thew. JOHNSON.

The fame allusion is common to other writers. So, in Beau. mont and Fletcher's Fair Maid of the Inx :

-a common trull,
A tempting fign, and curiously set forth

" To draw in riotous guests.”
Again, in the Elder Brother, by the fame authors:

" Stand still, thou sign of man.To understand the whole force of Shakspeare's idea, it should be remembered, that anciently almost every sign had a motto, or some attempt at a witricism, underneath it. STEEVENS,


[ocr errors]

Imogen's apartments.

Enter Imogen, and Pifanio.
Imo. I would thou grew'st unto the shores o’the

And question’d every fail: if he should write,
And I not have it, ''twere a paper loft
As offer'd mercy is. What was the last
That he fpake to thee?
Pij. 'Twas, His


his queen! Imo. Then wav'd his handkerchief? Pif. And kiss'd it, madam.

Imo. Senseless linen; happier therein than I !
And that was all ?
Pif. No, madam ; ? for so long


were a paper loft As offer'd mercy is.-) i. e. Should one of his letters miscarry, the loss would be as great as that of offer'd mercy. But the Oxford Editor amends it thus:

'twere a paper loft, With offer'd mercy in it. WARBURTON. I believe the poet's meaning is, that the loss of that paper would prove as fatal to her, as the loss of a pardon to a condemn'd criminal. A thought resembling this occurs in All's well that ends well:

“ Like a remorseful pardon slowly carried."
Dr. Warburton's opinion may, however, be supported from
Milton's Paradise Losi, b. iii. 1. 185:

“ The rest Mall hear me call, and oft be warn'd
“ Their finful itate, and to appease betimes
• Th’incensed deity, while offer'd grace
« Invites. STEEVENS,

- for so long
As he could make me with his eye, or ear,

Distinguish him from others. But how could Pofthumus make himself distinguished by his ear to Pisanio? By his tongue

[ocr errors]

As he could make me with this eye, or ear,
Distinguish him from others, he did keep
The deck, with glove, or hat, or handkerchief,
Still waving, as the fits and stirs of his mind
Could best express how now his soul fail'd on,
How swift his ship.

Imo. Thou shouldst have made him
As little as a crow, or less, ere left
To after-eye him.

Pif. Madam, so I did. | Imo. I would have broke mine eye-frings; crack'd

them, but To look upon him; } 'till the diminution Of space had pointed him sharp as my needle : Nay, follow'd him, 'till he had melted from The smallness of a gnat to air; and then Have turn'd mine eye, and wept.-But,good Pisanio, When shall we hear from him ?

Pis. Be assur’d, madam, With his - next vantage.

Imo. I did not take my leave of him, but had Most pretty things to say: ere I could tell him,

he might to the other's ear: and this was certainly Shakspeare's intention. We must therefore read:

As he could make me with this eye or ear,

Distinguish him from others.-
The expression is deixtixws, as the Greeks term it: the party
speaking points to that part spoken of. WARBURTON.
Sir T. Hanmer alters it thus:

-for so long
As he could mark me with his eye, or I

Distinguish The reason of Hanmer's reading was, that Pifanio describes no address made to the ear. JOHNSON.

'till the diminution Of space had pointed him sharp as my needle : ] The diminution of space, is the diminution of which space is the cause. Trees are killed by a blast of lightning, that is, by blafting, not blafted lightning. JOHNSON. -next vantage.] Next opportunity. JOHNSON.



How I would think on him, at certain hours,
Such thoughts, and such ; or I could make him

The she's of Italy should not betray
Mine intereft, and his honour; or have charg'd bin,
At the sixth hour of morn, at noon, at midnight,
To encounter me with orisons, for then
I am in heaven for him ; Sor ere I could
Give him that parting kiss, which I had set
Betwixt two charming words, comes in my father
And, like the tyrannous breathing of the north,
• Shakes all our buds from growing.


-or ere I could
Give him that parting kiss, which I had set

Betwixt two charming words ;-] Dr. Warburton pronounces as absolutely as if he had been present at their parting, that these two charming words were adieu Pofthumus; but as Mr. Edwards has observed," she must have understood the language of love very little, if he could find no tenderer expression of it, than the name by which every one called her husband.”

STEEVINS. Shakes all our buds from growing. ) A bud, without any diftinet idea, whether of flower or fruit, is a natural representation of any thing incipient or immature; and the buds of flowers, if flowers are meant, grow to flowers, as the buds of fruits grow to fruits. JOHNSON.

- the tyrannous breathing of the north,

Shakes all our buds from growing. A great critic proposes to read :

Shuts all our buds from blowing: and his emendation may in some measure be confirmed by those beautiful lines in the Two Noble Kinsmen, which I have no doubs were written by Shakspeare. Emilia is speaking of a rose :

“ It is the very emblem of a maid.
“ For when the west wind courts her gentily,
“ How modestly he blows, and paints the sun
“ With her chaite blushes ?-when the nortb comes near

« Rude and impatient, then like chastity,
• She locks her beauties in her bud again,
6. And leaves him to base briars.” FARMER.

I think

« PreviousContinue »