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death-bed, with the good king praying over him. There is so much terror in one, so much tenderness and moving piety in the other, as must touch any one who is capable either of fear or pity. In his Henry the Eighth, that prince is drawn with that greatness of mind, and all those good qualities which are attributed to him in any account of his reign. I his faults are not shewn in an equal degree, and the shades in this picture do not bear a just proportion to the lights, it is not that the artist wanted either colours or skill in the disposition of them; but the truth, I believe, might be, that he forbore doing it out of regard to Queen Elizabeth ; since it could have been no very great respect to the memory of his mistress, to have exposed some certain parts of her father's life upon the stage. He has dealt much more freely with that minister of the great king; and, certainly, nothing was ever more justly written, than the character of Cardinal Wolsey. He has shewn hi insolent in his prosperity; and yet, by a wonderful address, he makes his fall and ruin th subject of general compassion. The whole man with his vices and virtues, is finely and exactly described in the second scene of the fourth Act. The distresses, likewise, of Queen Katharine, in this play, are very movingly touched ; and, though the art of the poet has screened King Henry from any gross imputation of injustice, yet one is inclined to wish, the Queen had met with a fortune more worthy of her birth and virtue. Nor, are the manners, proper to the persons represented, less justly observed, in those characters taken from the Roman history; and of this, the fierceness and impatience of Coriolanus, his courage and disdain of the common people; the virtue and philosophical temper of Brutus; and the irregular greatness of mind in M. Antony, are beautiful proofs. For the two last especially, you find them exactly as they are described by Plutarch, from whom certainly Shakspeare copied them. He has, indeed, followed his original pretty close, and taken in several little incidents that might have been spared in a play. But, as Í hinted before, his design seems most commonly rather to describe those great men in the several fortunes and accidents of their lives, than to take any single great action, and form his work simply upon that. However, there are some of his pieces, where the fable is founded upon one action only. Such are, more especially, Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet ana Othello. The design in Romeo and Juliet is plainly the punishment of their two families, for the unreasonable feuds and animosities that had been so long kept up between them. and occasioned the effusion of so much blood. In the management of this story, he has shewn something wonderfully tender and passionate in the lore-part, and very pitiful in the distress. Hamlet is founded on much the same tale with the Electra of Sophocles. In each of them a young prince is engaged to revenge the death of his father, their mothers are equally guilty, are both concerned in the murder of their husbands, and are afterwards married to the murderers. There is in the first part of the Greek tragedy something very moving in the grief of Electra ; but, as Mr. Dacier has observed, there is something very unnatural and schocking in the manners he has given that princess and Orestes in the latter part. Orestes imbrues his hands in the blood of his own mother. On the contrary, Hamlet is represented with the same piety towards his father, and resolution to revenge his death, as Orestes; he has the same abhorrence for his mother's guilt, which, to provoke him the more, is heightened by incest : but, it is with wonderful art and justness of judgment, that the poet restrains him from doing violence to his mother. To prevent any thing of that kind, he makes his Father's Ghost forbid that part of his vengeance, and thus distinguishes rightly between horror and terror. The latter is a proper passion of tragedy, but the former ought always to be carefully avoided. And, certainly, no dramatic writer ever succecded better in raising terror in the minds of an audience than Shakspeare has lone. The whole tragedy of Macbeth, but more especially the scene where the king is murdered, in the second Act, as well as this play, is a noble proof of that manly spirit with which he writ; and both shew how powerful he was in giving the strongest motions to our
souls that they are capable of I cannot leave Hamlet without taking notice of the advan. · tage with which we have seen this master-piece of Shakspeare distinguish itself upon the
stage, by Mr. Betterton's fine performance of that part. A man, who, though he had no other good qualities, as he has a great many, must have made his way into the esteem of all men of letters, by this only excellency. No man is better acquainted with Shakspeare's manner of expression; and, indeed, he has studied him so well, and is so much a master of him, that whatever part of his he performs, he does it as if it had been written on pur. pose for him, and that the author had exactly conceived it as he plays it. I must own a particular obligation to him, for the most considerable part of the passages relating to this life, which I have here transmitted to the public: his veneration for the memory on Shakspeare having engaged him to make a journey into Warwickshire on purpose to gather up what remai zs he could, of a naine for wbich he bad so great a veu.
man born, master pars warrant, quittance, or
agements unto you, I am of the church, and SCENE I... Windsor. Before Page's House. will be glad to do my benevolence, to niake
atonements and compromises between you. Enter Justice SHALLOW, SLENDER, and Sir
Shal. The Council shall hear it; it is a riot. HUGH EVANS.
Era. It is not meet the Council hear a riot; Shal. Sir Hugh, persuade me pot; I will there is no fear of Got in a riot : the Council, make a Star-chamber matter of it: if he were look you, shall desire to hear the fear of Got, twenty Sir John Falstaffs, he shall not abuse and not to hear a riot; take your vizamentst Robert Shallow, esquire.
in that. Slen. In the county of Gloster, justice of Shal. Ha! o'my life, if I were young again, peace, and coram
the sword should end it. Shal. Ay, cousio Slender, and Cust-alorum.t | Era. It is petter that friends is the sword, Slen. Ay, and ratolorum too; and a gentle and end it; and there is also another device rson ; who writes himself | in
.. armigero : in any bill. warrant, quittance. or I disa
with it: There is Anne Page,
. Peradventure, prings goot obligation, armigero.
which is daughter to master George Page, Shal, Ay, that we do; and have done any which is pretty virginity. time these three hundred years.
Slen. Mistress Anne Page? She has brown Slen. All his successors, gone before him, hair, and speaks smallt like a woman. have done't; and all his ancestors, that come Eva. It is that fery versor for all the 'orld, after him, may: they may give the dozen white as just as you will desire; and seven hundred luces in their coat.
| pounds of monies, and gold, and silver, is her Shal. It is an old coat.
grandsire, upon his death's-bed, (Got deliver Era. The dozep white louses do become an | to a joyful resurrections !) give, when she is old coat well ; it agrees well, passant: it is a able to overtake seventeen years old : it were familiar beast to man, and signifieslove. a goot motion, if we leave our pribbles and
Shal. The luce is the fresh fish; the salt fish prabbles, and desire a marriage between magis an old coat.
ter Abraham, and mistress Anne Page. Slen. I may quarter, coz?
Shal. Did her grandsire leave her seven bun. Shal. You may, by marrying..
dred pound? Ere. It is marring indeed, if be quarter it ! Era. Ay, and her father is make her a pette Shal. Not a whit.
penny. Era. Yes, py'rt-lady; if he has a quarter of 'Shal. I know the young gentlewoznan ; she your coat, there is but three skirts for yourself, has good gifts. 10 may simple conjectures : but that is all one : Era. Seven hundred pounds, and possibili. If Sir John Falstaff have committed dispar- ties, is good gifts.
A title formerly appropriated to chaplains, tOutlos roleum. t By our.
* Court of Star-chamber. + Advisement Hetta
Shal. Well, let us see honest master Page: 1 Slen. Ay, it is no matter. Is Falstaff there?
1 Pist. How now, Mephostophilus ?* Eva. Shall I tell you a lie? I do despise a Slen. Ay, it is no matter. liar, as I do despise one that is false ; or, as I Nym. Slice, I say! pauca, pauca ;t slice! that's despise one that is not true. The knight, Sir my humour. John, is there; and, I beseech you, ba ruled. Slen. Where's Simple, my man ?-can you by your well-willers. I will peat the door tell, cousin ? [knocks] for master Page. What, hoa ! Got Era. Peace: I pray you! Now let us underpless your house here !
stand : There is three umpires in this matter
as I understand: that is-master Page, fideli. Enter PAGE.
cet, master Page; and there is myself, fidelicet, Page. Who's there?
m elf; and the three party is, lastly and Eva. Here is Got's plessing, and your friend. I wally, mine host of the Garter. and justice Shallow : and here young maste .Page. We three, to hear it, and end it be. Slender; that, peradventures, shall tell you tween them. another tale, if matters grow to your likings. Eva. Fery goot: I will make a prief of it in
Pace. I am glad to see your worships well : I my note-book : and we will afterwards 'or I thank you for my venison, master Shallow. upon the cause, with as great discreetly as we
Shal. Master Page, I am glad to see you; I can. Much good do it your good heart! I wished Fal. Pistol, your venison better : it was ill kill'd :-Hot 1 Pist. He hears with ears. doth good mistress Page ?--and I love you
| Era. The tevil and his tar
se is always with my heart, la; with my heart. this, He hears with ear? Why, it is affectations. Page. Sir, I thank you.
Fal. Pistol, did you pick master Slender's Shal. Sir, I thank you; by yea and no, I do. purse ?
Page. I am glad to see you, good master Slen. Ay,'by these gloves, did he, (or I would Slender.
I might never come in mine own great chamber Slen. How does your fallow greyhound, Sir? again else,) of seven groats in mill-sixpences, I heard say, he was out-run on Cotsale.* and two Edward shovel-boards, that cost me Page. It could not be judg'd, Sir.
two shillings and twopence a-piece of Yead Slen. You'll not confess, you'll not confess. Miller, by these gloves.
Shal. That he will not ;-'tis your fault, 'tis Fal.'Is this true, Pistol ? your fault :-"Tis a good dog.
Eva. No; it is false, if it is a pick-purse. Page. A cur, Sir.
Pist. Ha, thou mountain-foreigner !-- Sir Shal. Sir, he's a good dog, and a fair dog;
John, and master mine,
Word of denial in thy labras|| here; Page. Sir, he is within ; and I would I could Word of denial; froth and scum, thou liest. do a good office between you.
Slen. By these gloves, then 'twas he. Eva. It is spoke as a Christians ought to Nym. Be advised, Sír, and pass good huspeak.
mours : I will say, marry trap, with you, if Shal. He hath wrong'd me, master Page. you run the nuthook's humour on me; that is Page. Sir, he doth in some sort confess it. the very note of it.
Shal. If it be confess'd, it is not redress'd; is . Slen. By this hat, then he in the red face not that so, master Page? He hath wrong'd had it: for though I cannot remember what me; indeed, he hath ;-at a word, he hath ;-|I did when you made me drunk, yet I am not believe me ;-Robert Shallow, esquire, saith, altogether an ass. he is wrong'd.
Fal. What say you, Scarlet and John? Page. Here comes Sir John.
Bard. Why, Sir, for my part, I say, the Enter Sir John Falstaff, BARDOLPH, NYM,
gentleman had drunk himself out of his five
sentences. and Pistol.
Era. It is his five senses: fie, what the ignoFal. Now, master Shallow; you'll complain rance is ! of me to the king?
Bard. And being fap,** Sir, was, as they Shal. Knight you have beaten my men, killed say, cashier'd; and so conclusions pass'd the my deer, and broke open my lodge.
careires.tt Pal. But not kiss'd your keeper's daughter? Slen. Ay, you spake in Latin then too; but Shal. Tut, a pin! this shall be answer'd. | 'tis no maiter: I'll ne'er be drunk whilst í live
Fal. I will answer it straight ;-I have done again, but in honest, civil, godly company, for all this :—That is now answer'd.
this trick: if I be drunk. I'll be drunk with Shal. The Council shall know this.
those that have the fear of God, and not with Fal. "Twere better for you, if it were known drunken knaves. in counsel : you'll be laugh'd at..
Era. So Got 'udge me, that is a virtuous Eva. Pauca verba, Sir John, good worts.
Fal. Good worts !+ good cabbage.-Slender, Fal. You hear all these matters denied, gen I broke your head ; What matter have you tlemen; you hear it. against me?
Slen. Marry, Sir, I have matter in my head Enter Mistress ANNE Page with wine ; Mistress against you; and against your coney-catching! FORD and Mistress PAGE following. rascals, Bardolph, Nym, and Pistol. They Page. Nay, daughter, carry the wine in; we'll carried me to the tavern, and made me drunk, I drink within.
Exit ANNE PAGE. and afterwards picked my pocket. Bard. You Banbury cheese!ş
* The name of an ugly spirit.
+ Few words.
1 King Edward's shillings, used in the game of shufile * Cotswold in Gloucestershire.
- A Lips. + Worts was the ancient name of all the cabbage kind.
If you say I am a thief.
** Drunki * Sharoor Nothing but parin
tt The bounds of good behaviour.
Sler. O heavens! this is mistress Anne Page.Shal. Ay, I think my cousiu meant well. Page. How now, mistress Ford ?
1. Slen. Ay, or else I would I might be hanged, Fal. Mistress Ford, by my troth, you are very | la. well met: by your leave, good mistress.
Re-enter ANNE PAĢE.
(kissing her. Shal. Here comes fair mistress Anne : Page. Wife, bid these gentlemen welcomo :- Would I were young, for your sake, mistress Come, we have a hot venison pasty to dinner; | Anne! come, gentlemen, I hope we shall drink down Anne. The dinner is on the table; my father all unkindness.
desires your worships' company. [Ereunt all but SHALLOW, SLENDER, and Evans.
Shal. I will wait on him, fair mistress Anne. Sten. I had rather than forty shillings, I had
Eva. Od's plessed will! I will not be abmy book of Songs and Sonnets here :
sence at the grace. Enter SIMPLE.
[Exeunt SHALLOW and Sir H. EVANS. How now, Simple! where have you been? 1]
Anne. Will’t please your worship to come must wait on myself, must I? You have not
in, Sir. The Book of Riddles about you, have you?
| Slen. No, I thank you, forsooth, heartily; I Sim. Book of Riddles! why, did you not lend |
and am very well. it to Alice Shortcake upon Allhallowmas last,
Anne. The dinner attends you, Sir. a fortnight afore Michaelmas ?*
Slen. I am not a-hungry, I thank you, forShal. Come, coz; come, coz; we stay for
sooth : Go, sirrah, for all you are my man, go, you. A word with you, coz: marry, this, coz;
wait upon my cousin Shallow : [Erit SIMPLE.] There is, as 'twere, a tender, a kind of tender,
| A justice of peace sometime may be beholden made afar off by Sir Hugh here ;-Do you un
to his friend for a man :-I keep but three men derstand me?
and a boy yet, till my mother be dead: But Slen, Ay, Sir, you shall find me reasonable;
what though? yet I live like a poor gentleman
born. if it be so, I shall do that that is reason. Shal. Nay, but understand me.
Anne. I may not go in without your worship: Slen. So I'do, Sir.
they will not sit, till you come. Era, Give ear to his motions, master Slender:1.
Slen. I'faith, i'll eat nothing; I thank you I will description the matter to you, if you be
Hias much as though I did. capacity of it.
Anne. I pray you, Sir, walk in. Slen. Nay, I will do as my cousin Shallow
Slen. I had rather walk here, I thank you; says: I pray you, pardon me; he's a justice of
I bruised my shin the other day with playing peace in his country, simple though I stand
at sword and dagger with a master of fence,
three veneys* for a dish of stewed prunes; Era. But that is not the question; the ques
and, by my troth, I cannot abide the smell of tion is concerning your marriage.
hot meat since. Why do your dogs bark so? Shal. Ay, there's the point, Sir.
be there bears i' the town? Era. Marry, is it; the very point of it; to
Anne. I think, there are, Sir; I heard them mistress Anne Page
talked of. Slen. Why, if it be so, I will marry her, upon
Slen. I love the sport well; but I shall as any reasonable demands.
soon quarrel at it, as any man in England. Evan. But can you affection the 'oman? Let|
| You are afraid, if you see the bear loose, are us command to know that of your mouth, or of you not
you not? your lips ; for divers philosophers hold, that|
Anne. Ay, indeed, Sir.
Slen. That's meat and drink to me now: I the lips is parcel of the mouth ;-Therefore, precisely, can you carry your good will to the
have seen Sackersont loose, twenty times; and maid?"
have taken him by the chain : but, I warrant • Shal. Cousin Abraham Slender, can you love
you, the women have so cried and shriek'd at her?
it, that it pass’d:1-but women, indeed, canSlen. I hope, Sir,-I will do, as it shall be- not abide 'em; they are very ill-favoured come one that would do reason.
rough things. Era. Nay, Got's lords and his ladies, you
Re-enter Page. must speak possitable, if you can carry her Page. Come, gentle master Slender, come; your desires towards her.
we stay for you. Shal. That you must: Will you, upon good Slen. I'll eat nothing ; I thank you, Sir. dowry, marry her?
Page. By cock and pye, you shall not choose, Slen. I will do a greater thing than that, upon Sir: come, come. your request, cousin, in any reason.
Slen. Nay, pray you, lead the way. Shal. Nay, conceive me, conceive me, sweet Page. Come on, Sir. coz ; what I'do, is to pleasure you, coz: Can Slen. Mistress Anne, yourself shall go first. you love the maid?
Anne. Not I, Sir ; pray you, keep on. Slen. I will marry her, Sir, at your request;/ Slen. Truly, I will not go first; truly, la : I but if there be no great love in the beginning, will not do you that wrong. yet heaven may decrease it upon better ac Anne. I pray you, Sir, quaintance, when we are married, and have Slen. I'll rather be unmannerly than troublemore occasion to know one another: I hope, some : you do yourself wrong, indeed, la. upon familiarity will grow_more contempt:
(Exeunt. but if you say, marry her, I will marry her,
SCENE II.-The same. that I am freely dissolved, and dissolutely. Era. It is a fery discretion answer; save,
Enter Sir Hugh Evans and SIMPLE. the faul is in the 'ort dissolutely : the 'ort is, Eva. Go your ways, and ask of Doctor according to our meaning, resolutely ;-his Caius' house, which is the way: and there meaning is good.
* Three set-to's, bouts, or hits.
+ The name of a bear exhibited at Paris-Garden in * An intended blunder.
Surpassed all expression.
cdwells one mistress Quickly, which is in the fal. Now, the report goes, she has all the manner of his nurse, or his dry nurse, or his frule of her husband's purse ; she hath legions cook, or his laundry, his washer, and his of angels. * wringer.
Pist. As many devils entertain; and, to her, Sinip. Well, Sir.
boy, say I. Eva. Nay, it is petter yet : give her this Nym. The humour rises; it is good: humour letter; for it is a 'oman that altogether's ac- me the angels. quaintance with mistress Anne Page; and the. Fal. I have writ me here a letter to her: and letter is, to desire and require her to solicit here another to Page's wife; who even now your master's desires to mistress Anne Page :/ gave me good eyes too, examin'd my parts I pray you, be'gone; I will make an end of my with most judicious eyliads : sometimes the dinner; there's pippins and cheese to come. beam of her view gilded my foot, sometimes
[Exeunt. my portly belly.
Pist. Then did the sun on dung-hill shine. SCENE III.-A Room in the Garter Inn. | Nym. I thank thee for that humour. Enter FALSTAFF, Host, BARDOLPHI, Nym, fal. O, she did so course o'er my exteriors Pistol, and Robin.
with such a greedy intention, that the appetite
of her eye did seem to scorch me up like a Fal. Mine host of the Garter,
burning glass! Here's another letter to her: Host. What says my bully-rook ? Speak
she bears the purse too; she is a region in scholarly, and wisely.
Guiana, all gold and bounty. I will be cheatert Fal. Truly, mine host, I must turn away to them both, and they shall be exchequers to some of my followers.
me; they shall be my East and West Indies, .. Bost. Discard, bully hercules ; cashier : let and I will trade to them both. Go, bear thou
Host. Discard, bully Hercules ; cashier : let them wag; trot, trot.
this letter to mistress Page ; and thou this to Fal. I sit at ten pounds a week.
mistress Ford : we will thrive, lads, we will Host. Thou'rt an emperor, Cæsar, Keisar, I thrive and Pheezar, I will entertain Bardolph; be Pist. Shall I Sir Pandarus of Troy become. shall draw, he shall tap: said I well, bully And by my side wear steel ? then, Lucifer take Hector ?
all! Fal. Do so, good mine host.
Nym. I will run no base humour; here, take Host. I have spoke ; let him follow: Let me the humour letter: I will keep the 'haviour of see thee froth, and lime : I am at a word ; fol- reputation. low.
(Exit Host. | Fal. Hold, sirrah, (to Roe.] bear you these Fal. Bardolph, follow him; a tapster is a
letters tightly ;: good trade: An old cloak makes a new jerkin; Sail like my pinnace to these golden shores, a withered servingman, a fresh tapster : Go; | Rogues, hence avaunt! vanish like bail-stones, adieu.
[pack! Bard. It is a life that I have desired; I will I Trudge blod.
will | Trudge, plod, away, o' the hoof; seek shelter, thrive.
(Exit BARD. | Falstaff will learn the humour of this age, Pist. O base Gongarian* wight! wilt thou French thrift, you rogues : myself, and skirted the spigot wield ?
page.' (Exeunt Falstaff and ROBIN. Nym. He was gotten in drink : Is not the | Pist. Let vultures gripe thy guts! for gourd humour conceited ? His mind is not heroic,
and fullans holds, and there's the humour of it.
| And high and low beguile the rich and poor: Fal. I am glad, I am so acquit of this tinder- Testeril'll have in pouch, when thou shalt lack, box; his thefts were too open : his filching was | Base Phrygian Turk! like an unskilful singer, he kept not time. Num. I have operations in my head, which
Num. The good humour is, to steal at a mi-l be humours of revenge. nute's rest.
Pist. Wilt thou revenge ?
Pist. With wit, or steel?
I will discuss the humour of this love to Page.
How Falstaff, varlet vile, Pist. Young ravens must have food.
His dove will prove, his gold will hold, Fal. Which of you know Ford of this town?
And his soft couch detile. Pist. I ken the wight; he is of substance good. Num. My humour shall not cool : I will in
Fal. My honest lads, I will tell vou what Icense Page to deal with poison; I will possess am about.
him with yellowness, ** for the revolt of mien Pist. Two yards, and more.
is dangerous : that is my true humour Fal. No quips now, Pistol ; indeed I am in
Pist. Thou art the Mars of malcontents : I the waist two yards about: but I am now now second thee; troop on.
(Ereunt. about no waste; I am about thrift, Briefly, I do mean to make love to Ford's wife; I spy
| SCENE IV-A Room in Dr. Caius' House. entertainment in her; she discourses, she Enter Mrs. QUICKLY, SIMPLE, and Rugby. carves, she gives the leer of invitation: I can Quick. What; Jobn Rugby -I pray thee, constrúe the action of her familiar style; and go to the casement, and see if you can see my the hardest voice of her behaviour, to be Eng- master, master Doctor Caius, coming: if he lish'd rightly, is, I am Sir John Falstaff's. do, i'fáith, and find any body in the house
Pist. He hath studied her well, and trans- here will be an old abusing of od's patience iated her well; out of honesty into English. I and the king's English. Nym. The anchor is deep: will that humour
* Gold coin. + Eschealour, an officer in the Excheques Cleverly.
Sixpence I have in pocket.