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T E M P E S T.
A Ç T I.
SCENE I. í
On a Ship at Sea.
A Storm with Thunder and Lightning,
Enter a Ship-master and a Boatswain.
MASTER. Boatswain ,
Mast. Good : Speak to the mariners : fall to't
• Boatswain, ) In this naval dialogue, perhaps the first example of sailor's language exhibited on the stage, there are, as I have been told by a skilful navigator , some inaccuracies and contradi&ory orders. JOHNSON.
The foregoing observation is founded on a mistake. These orders should be considered as given, not at once, but successively, as the emergency required. One attempt to save the ship failiug, another is tried. MALONE.
- fall to't yarely, ) i. e. Readily , nimbly. Our author is frequent in his use of this word. So in Decker's Satiromastix :
They'll make his mufc as gare as a tumbler.. STEEVENS. Here it is applied as a sea-term, and in other parts of the fçene. So he uses the adjeđive , A& V. sc. v : « Our ship is tight and yare. And in one of the Henrics :
" yare are our ships. To this day the sailors say , « fit yare to the helm, .. Again, in Antony and Cleopatra , A& II. sc. iii : The tackles Jarely frame the office. T. WARTON,
the master's whistle. - Blow
Blow, till thou burst thy wind,“ if room enough! Enter ALONSO, SEBASTIAN, ANTONIO, FERDI
NAND, GONZALO, and others. ALON. Good boatswain, have care, Where's the master ? Play the men.'
Boats. I pray now, keep below.
Boats. Do you not hear him? You mar our labour; Keep your cabins : you do aflift the storm.“
Gon. Nay, good, be patient.
BOATS. When the sea is. Hence! What care these roarers for the name of king ? To cabin: silence : trouble us not.
Gon. Good; yet remember whom thou hast aboard.
4 Blow, till thou burf thy wind; &c.) Perhaps it might be read Blow till thou burst, wind, if room enough. JOHNSON. Perhaps rather
blow till thou burst chec, wind ! if room enough. Beaumont and Fletcher have copied this passage in The Pilgrim :
Blow , blow west wind, « Blow till thou rive ! ,, Again , in Pericles Prince of Tyre, 1609 :
ift Sailor. Blow, and split thyself ! , Again , in K. Lear :
Blow winds, and burst your cheeks! » The allusion in these passages, as Mr. M. Mason observes, is to the manner in which the winds were represented in ancient prints and pi&ures. STEEVENS.
Play the men. ) i. e, ad with spirit, behave like men.
" When they shall hear how we have play'd the men, Again, in Marlowe's Tamburlaine, 1590, p. 2:
· Viceroys and peers of Turkey, play ihe men.. " 2 días, avépes, écè, Iliad. V. v. 529. STEEVENS.
Again, in Scripture , ? Sam. x. 12 : « Be of good courage , and let us play the men for our people. MALONE. 6
ahi the florm. ) So in Pericles : Patience, good Sir; do not all the storm.» STEEVENS.
BOATS. None that I more love than myself. You are a counsellor; if you can command these elements to silence, and work the peace of the present,' we will not band a rope more ; use your authority. If you cannot, give thanks you have liv'd so long, and make yourself ready in your cabin for the inischance of the hour , if it so hap. - Cheerly, good hearts Out of our way, I say.
* Gon. I have great comfort from this fellow: methinks, he hath no drowning mark upon him; his complexion is perfect gallows. Stand fast, good fate, to his hanging ! make the rope of his destiny our cable, for our own doth little advantage! If he be not born to be hang'd, our case is miserable.
( Exeunt. Re-enter Boatswain. Boats. Down with the top-mast; yare; lower, lower ; bring her to try with main-course. (A cry within. ) A plague upon this howling! they are louder than the weather, or our office.
of tke prefent,) i. c. of the present instant. So in the 15th Chapter of the ift Epifle to the Corinthians : of whom the greater part remain unto this present."
STEEVENS. 8 Gonzalo.) It may be observed of Gonzalo , that, being the only good man that appears with the king, he is the only man that preserves his cheerfulness in the wreck, and his hope on the island. JOHNSON.
9 bring her to try with main-course. ) Probably from Hackluyt's Voyages, 1598 : " And when the barke had way, we cut the , hauser, and fo gate the sea to our friend, and tried out all that day with our maine course." MALONE.
This phrase also occurs in Smith's Sca-Grammar, 1627, 4°, under the article How to handle a Jhip in a florme. «Let us lie at Irie with our maine course; that is, to hale the tacke aboorit, the fheat close aft, the boling set up, and the helme tied close aboord.» p. 40, STEEVENS.
Re-enter SEBASTIAN, ANTONIO, and GONZALO, Yet again? what do you here? Shall we give o'er, and drown ? Have you a mind to fink? SEB.
you bawling , blasphemous, incharitable dog!
then. ANT. Hang, cur, hang! you whoreson, insolent noise-maker, we are less afraid to be drown'd than thou art.
GON. I'll warrant him from drowning; though the ship were no stronger than a nut - shell, and as leaky as an unstanch'd wench.” Boats. Lay her a-hold, a-hold;' set her two
1 courses ; off to fea again," lay her off,
Enter Mariners wet. MAR. All lost! to prayers, to prayers ! all loft!
( Exeunt. BOATS. What, must pur mouths be cold? Gon. The king and prince at prayers ! let us
aflıft them, For our cafe is as theirs.
an unstanch'd wench.) Unftanch'd, I am willing to believe , means incontinent. STEEVENS.
3 Lay her a-hold, a-hold ;) To lay a ship a-hold, is to bring her co lic as near the wind as she can, in order to keep clear of the land, and get her out to sea. STEEVENS.
* — fet her two courses; off to sea again , ) The courses are the main sail and fore sail. This term is used by Raleighi , in his Discourse on shipping. JOHNSON.
The passage, as Mr. Holt has observed , should be pointed , Set her two courses ; off, &c.
Such another expresfion occurs in Decker's If this be not a good Play, the Devil is in it , 1613 :
off with your Drablers and your Banners; out with your courfus." STEEVENS,
SEB. I am out of patience.
drunkards. Thịs wide-chopp'd rascal; --'Would, thou might'st
lie drowning, The washing of ten țides ! Gon.
He'll be hang'd yet; Though every drop of water swear against it, And gape at wid'ft to glut him.“ ( A confused noise within.) Mercy on us! - We split,
. wę split! – Farewell ,
- Farewell , my wife and children! Farewell, brother!'-We split, we split, we split!
Ant. Let's all sink with the king.
merely - ) In this place fignifies absolutely. In which (ense it is used in Hamlet, Aa 1. sc. iii :
Things rank and gross in nature
STEEVENS, 6 to glut him.) Shakspeare probably wrote, t'englut him, to swallow him ; for which I know not that glut is ever used by him. In this signification englut, from engloutir , French , occurs frequently, as in Henry VI :
Thou art so near the gulf • Thou needs must be englutted.". And again, in Timon and Othello. Yet Milton writes glutted off al for swallowed, and therefore perhaps the present text may ftand.
JOHNSON Thus in Sir A. Gorges's translation of Lucan, B. VI :
oylie fragments scarcely burn'd, « Together the doth Ycrape and glut." j. e, swallow. STEEVENS.
3 Mercy on us, &c. Farewell , brother ! &c.) All thefe lines have been hitherto given to Gonzalo, who has no brother in the ship. It is probable that the lines succeeding the confused noise within should be confidered as spoken by no determinate chara&ers. JOHNSON.
The hint for this ftage dirc&ion , &c. might have been received from a paflage io the second book of Sidney's Arcadia , where