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Transported—with no worse nor better guard,
Surely, “ almost at odds with morning” signifies, almost entering into conflict with it. Thus, in Timon of Athens :
“ 'Tis honour, with most lands to be at odds, —." In King Henry VI, P. III, we find an idea similar to that in Macbeth:
like the morning's war, “ When dying clouds contend with growing light." Steedens.
and your allowance,] i. e. done with your approbation. See Troilus and Cressida, Act II, sc. iji, Vol. XII. Malone.
3 That, from the sense of all civility,] That is, in opposition to, or departing from, the sense of all civility. So, in Twelfth Night:
“ But this is from my commission -." Again, in The Mayor of Quinborough, by Middleton, 1661:
“ But this is from my business." Malone. 4 In an extravagant -) Extravagant is here used in its Latin signification, for wandering. Thus, in Hamlet: “ The extravagant, and erring spirit, —." Steevens. o Tying her duty, beauty, wit, and fortunes,
In an extravagant and wheeling stranger,] Thus the old copies for which the modern editors, following Mr. Pope, bave substituted-To an extravagant &c. In King Lear, we find—“ And hold our lives in mercy;" (not at mercy;) in The Winter's Tale "he was torn to pieces with a bear," not “ by a bear;" and in Hamlet:
66 To let this canker of our nature come
« In further evil.” So, in the next scene, we have ". in your part,” not your part.” We might substitute modern for ancient phraseology in all these passages with as much propriety as in the present. We yet say, " she is wrapp'd'up in him." Malone..
For thus deluding you.
Strike on the tinder, ho!
[Exit, from above. Iago.
Farewel; for I must leave you: It seems not meet, nor wholesome to my place, To be produc'd? (as, if I stay, I shall,) Against the Moor: For, I do know, the state, However this may gall him with some check, 8Cannot with safety cast him ;9 for he 's embark'd With such loud reason to the Cyprus' wars, (Which even now stand in act) that, for their souls, Another of his fathom they have not, To lead their business: in which regard, Though I do hate him as I do hell pains, Yet, for necessity of present life, I must show out a flag and sign of love, Which is indeed but sign. That you shall surely find him, I.ead to the Sagittaryl the rais'd search; And there will I be with him. So, farewel. [Exit. Enter, below, BRABANTI0, and Servants with Torches.
Bra. It is too true an evil: gone she is; And what's to come of my despised time,
6 For thus deluding you.] The first quarto reads,-For this delusion. Steevens.
? To be produc'd - ] The folio reads,- producted. Steevens. 8 — some check,] Some rebuke. Johnson.
e-cast him ;] That is, dismiss him; reject kim. We still say, a cast coat, and a cast serving-man. Johnson.
the Sagittary -] Thus the folio. The quarto, 1622, reads,—the Sagittar -. I have chosen the unclipped reading.
Steevens. 2 And what's to come of my despised time,] Despised time is time of no value ; time in which
“ There's nothing serious in mortality,
“ Are left this vault to brag of.” Macbeth. Fohnson. Again, in Romeo and Juliet :
expire the term “ Of a despised life clos'd in my breast." As the quotation in the preceding note belongs to our steady moralist, Dr. Johnson, it could not have been more uncharacteris.
Is nought but bitterness.-Now, Roderigo,
tapers; Raise all my kindred.- Are they married, think you?
Rod. Truly, I think, they are.
Yes, sir; I have, indeed. Bra. Call up my brother._0, that you had had her! Some one way, some another.- Do you know Where we may apprehend her and the Moor?
Rod. I think, I can discover him; if you please To get good guard, and go along with me.
Bra. Pray you, lead on. At every house I 'll call;
tically vitiated, than by the compositor, in Mr. Malone's edition, where it appears thus:
“ There's nothing serious in morality.” Steevens.
-0, thou deceiv'st me Past thought!! Thus the quarto, 1622. The folio, 1623, and the quartos, 1630 and 1655, read:
O, she deceives me Past thought! I have chosen the apostrophe to his absent daughter, as the most spirited of the two readings. Steevens.
Are there not charms,] Thus the second folio. The first, and the quarto, ungrammatically read, Is there not &c. Mr. Malone follows the oldest copies, and observes that the words—Is there not charms, &c. mean-Is there not such a thing as charms?
Steevens. 5 By which the property of youth and maidhood
May be abusdj By which the faculties of a young virgin may be infatuated, and made subject to illusions and false ima. gination:
- wicked dreams abuse “ The curtain'd sleep." Macbeth. Johnson. and maidhood -] The quartos read and manhood –
I may command at most:
weapons, ho! And raise some special officers of night.On, good Roderigo ;-I'll deserve your pains. [Exeunt.
SCENE II. The same. Another Street. Enter OTHELLO, Iago, and Attendants. Iago. Though in the trade of war I have slain men, Yet do I hold it very stuff o'the conscience, 8
o Pray you, lead on.] The first quarto reads,-Pray lead me on.
Steevens. of night.] Thus the original quarto, 1622; for which the editor of the folio substituted-officers of might; a reading which all the modern editors have adopted. I have more than once had occasion to remark that the quarto readings were sometimes changed by the editor of the folio, from ignorance of our poet's phraseology or meaning:
I have no doubt that Shakspeare, before he wrote this play, read The Commonwealth and Government of Venice, translated from the Italian, by Lewes Leukenor, and printed in quarto, 1599; a book prefixed to which we find a copy of verses by Spenser. This treatise furnished our poet with the knowledge of those officers of night, whom Brabantio here desires to be called to his assistance.
“For the greater expedition thereof, of these kinds of judgments, the heades or chieftaines of the officers by night do obtaine the authority of which the advocators are deprived. These offi. cers of the night are six, and six likewise are those meane officers, that have only power to correct base vagabonds and trifling of. fences.
“ Those that do execute this office are called heades of the tribes of the city, because out of every tribe, (for the city is die vided into six tribes) there is elected an officer of the night, and a head of the tribe.— The duty of eyther of these officers is, to keepe a watch every other night by turn, within their tribes; and, now the one, and then the other, to make rounds about his quar. ter, till the dawning of the day, being always guarded and attended on with weaponed officers and serjeants, and to see that there be not any disorder done in the clarkness of the night, which alwaies emboldeneth men to naughtinesse; and that there be not any houses broken up, nor theeres nor rogues lurking in corners with intent to do violence.” Commonwealth of Venice, pp. 97, 99. Malone.
It has been observed by Mr. Malone, in Romeo and Juliet, (See Act V, sc. iji, Vol. XII,) that there is no watch in Italy. How does that assertion quadrate with the foregoing account of officers.of the right.?" Steerens.
To do no contriv'd murder; I lack iniquity
Oth. 'Tis better as it is.
Nay, but he prated, o
stuff o'the conscience,] This expression to common read. ers appears harsh. Stuff of the conscience is, substance or essence of the conscience. Stuff is a word of great force in the Teutonick languages. The elements are called in Dutch, Hoefd stoffen, or head stuffs. Johnson. Again, in King Henry VIII:
“ You ’re full of heavenly stuf,” &c. Frisch's German Dictionary gives this explanation of the word
- materies ex qua aliquid fieri poterit.” Steevens. Shakspeare in Macbeth uses this word in the same sense, and in a manner yet more harsh: “ Cleanse the stuff'd bosom of that perilous stuff.”
H. White. he prated,] Of whom is this said? Of Roderigo ?
Steevens. the magnifico - ] “ The chief men of Venice are by a peculiar name called Magnifici, i. e. magnificoes.” Minsheu's Dictionary. See too Volpone. Tollet.
a voice potential As double as the duke's :) It appears from Thomas's History of Italy, 4to. 1560, to have been a popular opinion, though a false one, that the duke of Venice had a double voice : “ Whereas,”
many have reported, the duke in ballotyng should have two voices ; it is nothinge so; for in giving his voice he hath but one ballot, as all others have.” Shakspeare, therefore, might have gone on this received opinion, which he might have found in some other book. Supposing, however, that he had learned from this very passage that the duke had not a double voice in the Council of Seven, yet as he has a vote in each of the various councils of the Venetian state, (a privilege which no other person enjoys) our poet might have thought himself justified in the epithet which he has here used ; and this circumstance, which he might have found in a book already quoted, Contareno's Commonwealth and Government of Venice, 4to. 1599, was, I believe, here in his thoughts.