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his helmet; and Tucca says to Sir Quintilian, in Decker's | rest, himselfe a Generall of a kind and curteous disposition : Satiromastix :'-Thou shalt wear her glove in thy wor. so saith Sara Williams, touching this devils acquaintance shipful hat, like to a leather brooch :' and Pandora, in with Mistres Plater, and her sister Fid. Lyly's' Woman in the Moon,' 1597 :
“Sara Williams had in her at a bare word, all the devils
in hell. The Exorcist askes Maho, Saras devil, what com- he that first presents me with his head, Shall wear my glove in favour for the deed.'
pany he had with him, and the devil makes no bones, but Portia, in her assumed character, asks Bassanio for his
tels him in flat termes, all the devils in hell. * * gloves, which she says she will wear for his sake: and
“And if I misse not my markes, this Dictator Modu King Henry V. gives the pretended glove of Alençon to
saith, hee had beene in Sara by the space of two yeeres, Fluellen, which afterwards occasions his quarrel with the
then so long hell was cleere, and had not a devill to cast at English soldier."
a mad dogge. And sooth I cannot much blame the devils There is an interesting illustration of this practice of
for staying so long abroade, they had taken up an Inne, gallantry in the life of George Clifford, third Earl of Cum
much sweeter then hell: and an hostesse that wanted berland, which has been commemorated in the fine por
neither wit, nor mirth, to give them kind welcome. trait of him in the Bodleian Picture Gallery. At an
“Heere, if you please, you may take a survay of the audience with Elizabeth on the return of the earl from one
whole regiment of hell: at least the chiefe Leaders, and of his voyages, she dropped her glove, which he took up
officers, as we finde them enrolled by theyr names. First
Killico, Hob, and a third anonymos, are booked doune for and presented to her on his knee. The queen then desired him to keep it for her sake; and he adorned it richly with
three graund Commaunders, every one having under him diamonds, and wore it ever after in the front of his hat at
300 attendants. * . public ceremonies.
“Frateretto, Fliberdigibbet, Hoberdidance, Tocobatto were foure devils of the round, or Morrice, whom Sara in her
fits, tuned together, in measure and sweet cadence. And (3) SCENE IV.
least you should conceive, that the devils had no musicke The prince of darkness is a gentleman;
in hell, especially that they would go & maying without Modo he's call'd, and Mahu.]
their musicke, the Fidler comes in with his Taber and If the subjoined extracts from Harsnet's “Declaration ” Pipe, and a whole Morice after him, with motly visards do not prove indisputably that Shakespeare was indebted for theyr better grace. These foure had forty assistants to that popular book for the titles of Tom o'Bedlam's in under them, as themselves doe confesse. * * fernal spirits, we may infer that these fantastic names were
“Maho was generall Dictator of hell ; and yet for good quite familiar to an auditory of his time.
manners sake, hee was contented of his good nature to "Now that I have acquainted you with the names of
make shew, that himselfe was under the check of Modu, the Maister, and his twelve disciples, the names of the
the graund devil in Master Maynie. These were all in places wherein, and the names of the persons upon whom
poore Sara at a chop, with these the poor soule travailed these wonders were shewed : it seemes not incongruent
up and doune full two yeeres together; so as during these that I relate unto you the names of the devils whom in
two yeeres, it had beene all one to say, one is gone to hell, this glorious pageant they did dispossesse. * *
or hee is gone to Sara Williams : for shee poore wench “ First then, to marshall them in as good order, as such
had all hell in her belly.”—Chap. X. pp. 45–50. disorderly cattell will be brought into, you are toʻunderstand, that there were in our possessed 5 Captaines, or Com
(4) SCENE IV. aunders above the rest: Captaine Pippin, Marwoods
Fie, foh, and fum, devil, Captaine Philpot, Trayfords devil, Captaine Maho,
I smell the blood of a British man.) Saras devil, Captaine Modu, Maynies devill, and Captaine
A quotation, as Mr. Jameson has shown, in his “IllustraSoforce, Anne Smiths devil. These were not all of equall
tions of Northern Antiquities," p. 397, from an old roauthoritie, and place, but some had more, some fewer
mance, familiarly known in Shakespeare's day in this under theyr commaund. * *
country, and still partly preserved in Scotland. The “The names of the punie spirits cast out of Trayford
words are those uttered by Rosman, king of Elfand, were these, Hilco, Smolkin, Hillio, Hiaclito, and Lustie
when Child Rowland, in search of his sister, “ Burd huffe-cap: this last seemes some swaggering punie devill,
Ellen,” had penetrated to the tower in which she was dropt out of a Tinkers budget. **
confined by the fairy emissaries of the Elfland monarch.Modo, Master Maynies devill, was a graund Com.
ff, fo, and fum! maunder, Muster-maister over the Captaines of the seaven
I smell the blood of a Christian man!
Be he dead, be he living, wi' my brand deadly sinnes : Cliton, Bernon, Hilo, Motubizanto, and the
I'll dash his harns (brains) frae his harn-pan."
" An archar off Northomberlonde
Say slean was the lord Persè,
(1) SCENE VI.-That fellow handles his bow like a crowkeeper.] The office of "crow-keeper" was to fright the crows from the corn and fruit; for this purpose a poor rustic, who, though armed with bow and arrows, was not supposed to have much skill in archery, was sometimes employed, and at others his place was supplied by a stuffed figure, resembling a man, and armed in the same way. Ascham, in his « Toxophilus," when speaking of a lubberly shooter, has a similar comparison to that in the text:“Another coureth downe and layeth out his buttockes, as thoughe hee should shoote at crowes."
An arow, that a cloth varde was lang,
The dynt yt was both sad and soar,
(2) SCENE VI.-Draw me a clothier's yard.] That is, an arrow a clothier's yard in length. The ancient “longbow” was about six feet in length, and the shaft over three. So, in the old ballad of “Chevy-Chace :"
Again, in Drayton's "Polyolbion," song xxvi. :-
They not an arrow drew, but was a cloth-yard long."
CRITICAL OPINIONS ON KING LEAR.
“Of all Shakspeare's plays, "Macbeth' is the most rapid, 'Hamlet' the slowest in movement. 'Lear' combines length with rapidity,—like the hurricane and the whirlpool, absorbing while it advances. It begins as a stormy day in summer, with brightness ; but that brightness is lurid, and anticipates the tempest.
"It was not without forethought, nor is it without its due significance, that the division of Lear's kingdom is, in the first six lines of the play, stated as a thing already determined in all its particulars, previously to the trial of professions, as the relative rewards of which the daughters were to be made to consider their several portions. The strange, yet by no means unnatural mixture of selfishness, sensibility, and habit of feeling, derived from and fostered by the particular rank and usages of the individual ;—the intense desire of being intensely beloved,-selfish, and yet characteristic of the selfishness of a loving and kindly nature alone ;-the self-supportless leaning for all pleasure on another's breast ;--the craving after sympathy with a prodigal disinterestedness, frustrated by its own ostentation, and the mode and nature of its claims ;-the anxiety, the distrust, the jealousy, which more or less accompany all selfish affections, and are amongst the surest contradistinctions of mere fondness from true love, and which originate Lear's eager wish to enjoy his daughters' violent professions, whilst the inveterate habits of sovereignty convert the wish into claim and positive right, and an incompliance with it into crime and treason ;-these facts, these passions, these moral verities, on which the whole tragedy is founded, are all prepared for, and will to the retrospect be found implied, in these first four or five lines of the play. They let us know that the trial is but a trick; and that the grossness of the old king's rage is in part the natural result of a silly trick, suddenly and most unexpectedly baffled and disappointed.
“Having thus, in the fewest words, and in a natural reply to as natural a question, which yet answers the secondary purpose of attracting our attention to the difference or diversity between the characters of Cornwall and Albany, provided the premises and data, as it were, for our after-insight into the mind and mood of the person whose character, passions, and sufferings are the main subjectmatter of the play ;~from Lear, the persona patiens of his drama, Shakspeare passes without delay to the second in importance, the chief agent and prime mover, and introduces Edmund to our acquaintancə, preparing us with the same felicity of judgment, and in the same easy and natural way, for his character in the seemingly casual communication of its origin and occasion. From the first drawing up of the curtain Edmund has stood before us in the united strength and beauty of earliest manhood. Our eyes have been questioning him. Gifted as he is with high advantages of person, and further endowed by nature with a powerful intellect and a strong energetic will, even without any concurrence of circumstances and accident, pride will necessarily be the sin that most easily besets him. But Edmund is also the known and acknowledged son of the princely Gloster : he, therefore, has both the germ of pride, and the conditions best fitted to evolve and ripen it into a predominant feeling. Yet, hitherto, no reason appears why it should be other than the not unusual pride of person, talent, and birth,-a pride auxiliary, if not akin to many virtues, and the natural ally of honourable impulses. But, alas ! in his own presence his own father takes shame to himself for the frank avowal that he is his father ; he has "blushed so often to acknowledge him, that he is now brazed to it. Edmund hears the circumstances of his birth spoken of with a most degrading and licentious levity. * * * This, and the con. sciousness of its notoriety,—the gnawing conviction that every show of respect is an effort of courtesy, which recalls, while it represses, a contrary feeling ;-this is the ever-trickling flow of wormwood and gall into the wounds of pride,-the corrosive virus which inoculates pride with a venom not its own,--with envy, hatred, and a lust for that power which, in its blaze of radiance, would hide the dark spots on his disc,— with pangs of shame personally undeserved, and therefore felt as wrongs, and with a blind ferment of vindictive working towards the occasions and causes, especially towards a brother, whose stainless birth and lawful honours were the constant remembrancers of his own debasement, and were ever in the way to prevent all chance of its being unknown, or overlooked and forgotten.
“Kent is, perhaps, the nearest to perfect goodness in all Shakspeare's characters, and yet the most individualized. There is an extraordinary charm in his bluntness, which is that only of a nobleman arising from a contempt of overstrained courtesy; and combined with easy placability where goodness of heart is apparent. His passionate affection for, and fidelity to Lear, act on our feelings in Lear's own favour : virtue itself seems to be in company with him.
“The Steward should be placed in exact antithesis to Kent, as the only character of utter irredeemable baseness in Shakspeare. Even in this the judgment and invention of the poet are very observable ; for what else could the willing tool of a Goneril be? Not a vice but this of baseness was left open to him.
“The Fool is no comic buffoon to make the groundlings laugh,—no forced condescension of Shakspeare's genius to the taste of his audience. Accordingly the poet prepares for his introduction, which he never does with any of his common clowns and fools, by bringing him into living connection with the pathos of the play. He is as wonderful a creation as Caliban ;-his wild babblings, and inspired idiocy, articulate and guage the horrors of the scene.
“ The monster Goneril prepares what is necessary, while the character of Albany renders a still more maddening grievance possible, namely, Regan and Cornwall in perfect sympathy of monstrosity. Not a sentiment, not an image, which can give pleasure on its own account, is admitted ; whenever these creatures are introduced, and they are brought forward as little as possible, pure horror reigns throughout.
“Edgar's assumed madness serves the great purpose of taking off part of the shock which would otherwise be caused by the true madness of Lear, and further displays the profound difference between the two. In every attempt at representing madness throughout the whole range of dramatic literature, with the single exception of Lear, it is mere light-headedness, as especially in Otway. In Edgar's ravings, Shakspeare all the while lets you see a fixed purpose, a practical end in view ; in Lear's, there is only the brooding of the one anguish, an eddy without progression.”—COLERIDGE.