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Till the wild waves will have him seen no more,
So did the merciless and pitchy night
Whereat amaz’d, as one that unaware
Even so confounded in the dark she lay,
Having lost the fair discovery of her way.
Ah me! she cries, and twenty times, woe, woe!
She marking them, begins a wailing note,
Her heavy anthem still concludes in woe,
Her song was tedious, and outwore the night,
Their copious stories, oftentimes begun,
For who hath she to spend the night withal,
She says, 'tis so: they answer all, 'tis so;
Lo! here the gentle lark, weary of rest,
Who doth the world so gloriously behold,
Venus salutes him with this fair good-morrow.
There lives a son that suck'd an earthly mother,
This said, she hasteth to a myrtle grove,
Anon she hears them chaunt it lustily,
the bushes in the way
Like a milch doe, whose swelling dugs do ache,
By this she hears the hounds are at a bay,
Even so the timorous yelping of the hounds
For now she knows it is no gentle chase,
Finding their enemy to be so curst,
she coasteth to the cry.] She approaches, as it were sidelong, and in a listening attitude, toward the cry. We have “coast,” as a verb, probably from the Fr, accoster.
8 — and her SPIRIT confounds.] So spelt in all the old copies, and though a dissyllable, to be pronounced in the time of one syllable: modern editors have printed it spright. Sprite is a monosyllabic mode of spelling “spirit.”
This dismal cry rings sadly in her ear,
Like soldiers, when their captain once doth yield,
Thus stands she in a trembling extasy,
Bids them leave quaking, bids them fear no more:
Whose frothy mouth bepainted all with red,
This way she runs, and now she will no further,
A thousand spleens bear her a thousand ways;
Full of respects ’, yet nought at all respecting,
9 – her senses All dismay'd,] So the edition of 1593, which Malone calls “our author's own edition,” confirmed by that of 1594: nevertheless he, and other editors (the Rev. Mr. Dyce among the number), arbitrarily print dismay'd” from the impression of 1596, under the pretext that sore has more force than “all :" the contrary seems to us the fact.
1- is mated with delays,] i. e. Is confounded with delays. We have frequently bad the word in this sense. See Vol. iv. p. 52; Vol. v. p. 451, &c.
? Full of respects,] The two earliest editions have a respects,” no doubt the true reading; the later impressions, respect, which is adopted by all modern editors. Shakespeare constantly uses the word in the plural, as in “ King Lear," Vol. v. p. 626:
“ Love is not love
Aloof from the entire point ;" and again, lower down in the same page,
** Since that respects of fortune are his love,
I shall not be his wife." “ Respects" there, as well as above in the text, means considerations, a sense it not unfrequently bears in old authors.
Here kennel'd in a brake she finds a hound,
And here she meets another sadly scowling,
To whom she speaks, and he replies with howling.
Clapping their proud tails to the ground below,
Look, how the world's poor people are amazed
So she at these sad signs draws up her breath,
And, sighing it again, exclaims on death.
Who when he liv’d, his breath and beauty set
If he be dead,-oh no! it cannot be,
Thy mark is feeble age; but thy false dart
Hadst thou but bid beware, then he had spoke,
Love's golden arrow at him should have fled,
• And not death's ebon dart, to strike bim dead.] An obvious allusion to the old apologue of Cupid and Death exchanging arrows; and Boswell truly says that VOL. VI.
Dost thou drink tears, that thou provok’st such weeping?
Now Nature cares not for thy mortal vigour,
Here overcome, as one full of despair,
But through the flood-gates breaks the silver rain,
Oh, how her eyes and tears did lend and borrow!
But like a stormy day, now wind, now rain,
Variable passions throng her constant woe,
But none is best; then, join they all together,
the fiction is probably of Italian origin, although he was not aware of the Sonnet by Annibale Nozzolini, quoted by Muratori, ii. 241. Fairfax volunteers an allusion to it in his translation of Tasso (B. ii. st. 34) :
“Death hath again exchang’d his shafts with Love," &c., for which there is no warrant in the original. * She Vail'd her eye-lids,] So in Marlowe's “ Hero and Leander," Sest. I. :
Vailing her eye-lids close." The Rev. Mr. Dyce must have entirely forgotten this expression in “Venus and Adonis" when he printed his note upon the similar poetical phrase in Marlowe. It does not mean " veiling her eye-lids close," as if she covered them with a veil, but lowering her eye-lids entirely down, or shutting them “close.” When, too, he prints “Vail'd to the ground,” in the preceding part of the same line, he could not have remembered how often old compositors absurdly repeated a word, because they saw it in another part of the same line. (Dyce's Marlowe, iii. p. 11.) We must inevitably read with modern editors,
“ Kneel'd to the ground, vailing her eye-lids close.” There is perhaps no verb, now out of use, that was more frequently employed by Shakespeare, Marlowe, and other writers of their day, than “to vail.” For a few instances in the former poet, see Vol. ii. pp. 268. 525; Vol. iv. p. 591, &c.