Page images
PDF
EPUB

Unwhipp'd of justice : Hide thee, thou

bloody hand; Thou perjur'd, and thou simular man of

virtue.

The words se thou,” in the first, and “man," in the second of these lines, overload the verse, and would be better omitted. 456. “

Force Their scanted courtesy." Force means, here, draw from them by vehement importunity. We might obtain measure by reading : “ Their court'sy scant.”

My wits begin to turn.” That's sorry yet for thee.I know not why the reading of the quarto, “ that sorrows yet for thee,” should be rejected. This is a lawful hemistic, as Lear is naturally in terrupted in his tender reflections by the good natured levity of the fool. 457. This prophecy Merlin shall make ; for I

before his time.I suppose, before the time described in Merlin's prophecy.

SCENE IV.

459. Thou think'st 'tis much, that this con

tentious storm Invades us to the skin,&c. This is altered from the quarto, which exhibits crulentious. It is in vain, perhaps, now to seek for the true word; but I cannot approve of “contentious.” Is it improbable that the poet coined a word, and wrote crudelious, from crudelis ?

" IVhere the greater malady is fix'd,

The lesser is scarce felt.. This sentiment occurs in The Fairy Queen : - “ The lesser pangs can bear, who have en

dur'd the chief.” 460. “ When the mind's free,

The body's delicate.”“ Free,” here, is unembarrassed-free from in quietude. "The body's delicate : the tempest in my mind.

“In my mind,” seems improperly to have crept in here, instead of some one word of the same import, which would have made the line complete:

“The body's delicate : the tempest here." 463. “ Go to thy cold bed, and warm

thee.Go and take such comfort as thy cold and miserable bed will afford thee, 465. " The pendulous air.” ..

Hamlet points at “ this brave o’erhanging firmament.”

SCENE V.

480.“ O heavens ! that this treason were not,

or not I the detector !" . Hamlet utters, with sincerity, a similar sentiment:

14

- The time is out-of-joint;:0. cursed spight. " That ever I was born, to set it right.”

SCENE VI. 492. “ Stand in hard cure.”In Othello we meet with a similar phrase :

“Stand in bold cure.”

SCENE VII.

500. All cruels else subscribd.· All other cruelties yielding place or pre-eminence to that-being underwritten-or underrated.

ACT IV. SCENE I.

504. " O world! But that thy strange mutations make us

hate thee, Life would not yield to age.Life would resist the miseries and diseases of age, were its end not hastened forward by the hate and distaste which we experience in the mutations of it. .

B. STRUTT.

506.66

The worst is not, So long as we can say, This is the worst.”

So long as we are capable of feeling our miseries, the measure of them may still be extended.

My son Came then into my mind." This is an admirable touch of delicacy and nature.

SCENE II.

513. Conceive, and fare thee well.“ Conceive what I would say, and fare thee well.”: O, the difference of man, and man! To

thee." “O” is interpolated. 515. And come to deadly use." Gon. No more; the text is foolish.

It is at least superfluous here, to say no more. 516. 6'Twill come,

Humanity must perforce,&c. The metre wants regulation and correction here : “ 'Twill come, humanity must prey on'ts self,

(or on 's self) “ Like monsters of the deep.”

i. e. It will come to pass. We must reject the superfluous word “perforce.” Gon." Milk-liver'd man.

- Milk-liver'd." In the Merchant of Venice we hear of cowards with “livers white as milk;" and in Macbeth, “ lily-liver’d.” 517. Thou changed,

And self-cover'd thing."

It is not easy to affix a meaning to this expression; perhaps the sense is :-Thou thing, whose exterior exhibits thy real character; thou who diffusest thy inward and essential wickedness over all thy person. Changed, I believe, means, not so much altered in disposition, as alienated from parental regard. 518.“ To let these hands of mine obey my

blood." How could any editor hesitate, in this case, to supply the deficient foot ? “ A woman's shape doth shield thee from

my wrath.” . Gon.Marry, your manhood now stands forth!”

Enter a Messenger. What news us The words here supplied seem necessary. " His great master; who, thereat en

rag'd, Flew on him, and amongst them felld him

dead.No pains or ingenuity of Mr. Malone will reconcile to concord the reading, Who flew on him, and among them felld him

dead.” · i. e. Says Mr. Malone, they, the servants, felld him, &c. Alb.Knows he the wickedness that has been

done ?” " And tell me whatsoever more thou knowest.”

[Exeunt.

« PreviousContinue »