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That comes before his eye. This is a practice,
“ Not like the haggard." He must choose persons and times, and observe tempers ; he must fly at proper game, like the trained hawk, and not Ay at large like the unreclaimed haggard, to seize all that comes in his way. Johnson.
s But wise men, folly-fallen,] Sir Thomas Hanmer reads, folly shewn. Johnson.
The first folio reads, “ But wise men's folly falne, quite taint their wit.” From whence I should conjecture, that Shakspeare possibly wrote:
“ But wise men, folly-fallen, quite taint their wit.” i. e. wise men fallen into folly. TYRWHITT.
The sense is : “ But wise men's folly, when it is once fallen into extravagance, overpowers their discretion. Heath.
I explain it thus: “The folly which he shews with proper adaptation to persons and times, is fit, has its propriety, and therefore produces no censure ; but the folly of wise men, when it falls or happens, taints their wit, destroys the reputation of their judgment. JOHNSON. I have adopted Mr. Tyrwhitt's judicious emendation.
STEEVENS. 6 Sir To. Save you, gentleman.
Vio. And you, sir.
Sir And. I hope, sir, you are; and I am yours.] Thus the old copy. Steevens.
I have ventured to make the two knights change speeches in this dialogue with Viola ; and, I think, not without good reason. It were a preposterous forgetfulness in the poet, and out of all VOL. XI.
Sir To. Will you encounter the house ? my niece is desirous you should enter, if your trade be to her?.
Vio. I am bound to your niece, sir: I mean, she is the lists of my voyage.
Sir To. Taste your legs, sir, put them to motion.
probability, to make Sir Andrew not only speak French, but understand what is said to him in it, who in the first Act did not know the English of pourquoi. THEOBALD.
Mr. Theobald thinks it absurd that Sir Andrew, who did not know the meaning of pourquoi in the first Act, should here speak and understand French; and therefore has given three of Sir Andrew's speeches to Sir Toby, and vice versă, in which he has been copied by the subsequent editors, as it seems to me, without necessity. The
words, -- " Save you, gentleman," which he has taken from Sir Toby, and given to Sir Andrew, are again used by Sir Toby in a subsequent scene ; a circumstance which renders it the more probable that they were intended to be attributed to bim here also.
With respect to the improbability that Sir Andrew should understand French here, after having betrayed his ignorance of that language in a former scene, it appears from a subsequent passage that he was a picker up of phrases, and might have learned hy rote from Sir Toby the few French words here spoken. If we are to believe Sir Toby, Sir Andrew “could speak three or four languages word for word without book.” MALONE.
9 If your trade be to her.] Trade was anciently used in a general sense to express business or employment of any kina. So, in Hamlet, vol. vii. p. 368 : “ Have you any further trade with us?" See note on that passage. Boswell.
8 - the list -] Is the bound, limit, farthest point. Johnson.
9 Taste your legs, sir, &c.] Perhaps this expression was employed to ridicule the fantastic use of a verb, which is many times as quaintly_introduced in the old pieces, as in this play, and in The True Tragedies of Marius and Scilla, 1594 :
“ A climbing tow'r that did not taste the wind." Again, in Chapman's version of the 21st Odyssey :
he now began “ To taste the bow, the sharp shaft took, tugg'd hard." In the Frogs of Aristophanes, however, a similar expression occurs, v. 462 : “TEUZAI tñs Búpas ;” i. e. taste the door, knock gently at it. STEVENS.
Vio. My legs do better understand me, sir, than I undertand what you mean by bidding me taste
Sir To. I mean, to go, sir, to enter.
Vio. I will answer you with gait and entrance: But we are prevented'.
Enter OLIVIA and MARIA. Most excellent accomplished lady, the heavens rain odours on you!
Sir And. That youth's a rare courtier ! Rain odours ! well.
V10. My matter hath no voice, lady, but to your own most pregnant and vouchsafed ear ?.
Six And. Odours, pregnant, and vouchsafed :I'll get 'em all three all ready'.
Oli. Let the garden door be shut, and leave me to my hearing.
[Exeunt Sir Toby, Sir ANDREW, and MARIA. Give me your hand, sir.
V10. My duty, madam, and most humble service.
Brunck terms it, elegans locutio : and quotes Plautus as using gustare in the sense of experiri, periculum facere. Mostell, v. i. 15: Herus meus hic quidem est gustare ejus sermonem volo.
BoswELL. 1- prevented.] i. e. our purpose is anticipated. So, in the 119th Psalm :
" Mine eyes prevent the night-watches." STEEVENS.
most pregnant and vouchsafed ear.] Pregnant, for ready ; as in Measure for Measure, vol. ix. p. 8. Steevens. Vouchsafed, for vouchsafing. Malone.
all three READY.] The old copy has—"all three already." Mr. Malone reads—" all three all ready.” Steevens.
The editor of the third folio reformed the passage by reading only-ready. But omissions ought always to be avoided if possible. The repetition of the word all is not improper in the mouth of Sir Andrew. Malone.
Præferatur lectio brevior, is a well known rule of criticism; and in the present instance I most willingly follow it, omitting the useless repetition-all. Steevens.
Oli. What is your name?
Oli. My servant, sir! 'Twas never merry world,
yours; Your servant's servant is your servant, madam. Oli. For him, I think not on him: for his
thoughts, 'Would they were blanks, rather than fill’d with
me ! Vio Madam, I come to whet your gentle
thoughts On his behalf:OLI.
O, by your leave, I pray you ; I bade you never speak again of him : But, would you undertake another suit, I had rather hear you to solicit that, Than musick from the spheres.
V10. Dear lady,
Oli. Give me leave, 'beseech you’: I did send, After the last enchantment you did here *,
I beseech you :] The first folio reads—“'beseech you."
STEEVENS. This ellipsis occurs so frequently in our author's plays, that I do not suspect any omission here. The editor of the third folio reads—“ | beseech you ;" which supplies the syllable wanting, but hurts the metre. MALONE.
I read with the third folio ; not perceiving how the metre is injured by the insertion of the vowel -1. Steevens.
you did here,] The old copy reads-heare. STEEVENS. Nonsense. Read and point it thus :
“ After the last enchantment you did here," i. e. after the enchantment your presence worked in my affections.
WARBURTON. The present reading is no more nonsense than the emendation.
Johnson. Warburton's amendment, the reading, “ you did here," though it may not perhaps be absolutely necessary to make sense of the
A ring in chase of you ; so did I abuse
passage, is evidently right. Olivia could not speak of her sending him a ring, as a matter he did not know except by hearsay; for the ring was absolutely delivered to him. It would, besides, be impossible to know what Olivia meant by “ the last enchantment,” if she had not explained it herself by saying—" the last enchantment you did here."
did here." There is not, perhaps, a passage in Shakspeare, where so great an improvement of the sense is gained by changing a single letter. M. Mason.
The two words are very frequently confounded in the old editions of our author's plays, and the other books of that age. See the last line of King Richard III. quarto, 1613 :
“ That she may long live heare, God say amen.” Again, in The Tempest, folio, 1623, p. 3, l. x.:
“ Heare, cease more questions.” Again, in Love's Labour's Lost, 1623, p. 139:
“ Let us complain to them what fools were heare." Again, in All's Well That Ends Well, 1623, p. 239 :
“That hugs his kicksey-wicksey heare at home." Again, in Peck's Desiderata Curiosa, vol. i. p.
205 : to my utmost knowledge, heare is simple truth and
verity." I could add twenty other instances were they necessary. Throughout the first edition of our author's Rape of Lucrece, 1594, which was probably printed under his own inspection, the word we now spell here, is constantly written heare.
Let me add, that Viola had not simply heard that a ring had been sent (if even such an expression as-“ After the last enchantment, you did heare,” were admissible ;) she had seen and talked with the bearer of it. MALONE.
s To one of your receiving –] i. e. to one of your ready apprehension. She considers him as an arch page. WARBURTON.
See p. 38), n. 8. Steevens.