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was a baker's daughter. . Lord, we know what we are, but know not what we may be. God be at your table !
King. Conceit upon her father.
Oph. Pray*, let us have no words of this; but when they ask you, what it means, say you this:
To-morrow is Saint Valentine's day *,
All in the morning betime,
* First folio, Pray you.
3 — the owl was a baker's daughter.] This was a metamorphosis of the common people, arising from the mealy appearance of the owl's feathers, and her guarding the bread from mice.
WARBURTON. To guard the bread from mice, is rather the office of a cat than an owl. In barns and granaries, indeed, the services of the ord! are still acknowledged. This was, however, no “metamorphosis of the common people," but a legendary story, which both Dr. Johnson and myself have read, yet in what book at least I cannot recollect.–Our Saviour being refused bread by the daughter of a baker, is described as punishing her by turning her into an oul.
STEEVENS. This is a common story among the vulgar in Gloucestershire, and is thus related : “Our Saviour went into a baker's shop where they were baking, and asked for some bread to eat. The mistress of the shop immediately put a piece of dough into the oven to bake for him; but was reprimanded by her daughter, who insisting that the piece of dough was too large, reduced it to a very small size. The dough, however, immediately afterwards began to swell, and presently became of a most enormous size. Whereupon, the baker's daughter cried out ‘Heugh, heugh, heugh, which owl-like noise probably induced our Saviour for her wickedness to transform her into that bird." This story is often related to children, in order to deter them from such illiberal behaviour to poor people. Douce. A Good morrow, 'Tis Saint Valentine's day,] Old copies :
“ To-morrow is," &c. The correction is Dr. Farmer's. Steevens.
There is a rural tradition that about this time of choose their mates. Bourne, in his Antiquities of the Common People, observes, that "it is a ceremony never omitted among the
Then up he rose, and don'd his clothes 5,
And dupp'd the chamber door ;
Neder departed more.
end on't :
* First folio, Indeed la! vulgar, to draw lots, which they term Valentines, on the eve before Valentine-day. The names of a select number of one sex are by an equal number of the other put into some vessel ; and after that every one draws a name, which for the present is called their Va. lentine, and is also look d upon as a good omen of their being man and wife afterwards.” Mr. Brand adds, that he has “ searched the legend of St. Valentine, but thinks there is no occurrence in his life, that could give rise to this ceremony." MALONE.
5- don'o his clothes,] To don, is to do on, to put on, as doff is to do off, put off. Steevens.
6 And DUpp'd the chamber door;] To dup, is to do up; to lift the latch. It were easy to write-And op'd. Johnson.
To dup, was a common contraction of to do up. So, in Damon and Pythias, 1582: the porters are drunk; will they not dup the gate to-day?" Lord Surrey, in his translation of the second Æneid, renders
Panduntur porta, &c.
“ The gates cast up, we issued out to play." The phrase seems to have been adopted either from doing up the latch, or drawing up the portcullis.' So, in the ancient MS. romance of The Sowdon of Babyloyne, p. 40: “To the prison she hyed her swyth,
dore she doth.” Again, in The Cooke's Play, in the Chester collection of mysteries, MS. Harl. 1013, p. 140:
Open up hell-gates anon.” It appears from Martin Mark-all's Apologie to the Bel-man of London, 1610, that in the cant of gypsies, &c. Dup the gigger, signified to open
the doore. Steevens.
See the second paragraph of the next note. “Steevense
« The prison
Young men will do't, if they come to't ;
By cock', they are to blame.
8 – by SAINT CHARITY,] Saint Charity is a known saint among the Roman Catholics. Spenser mentions her, Eclog. E. 255 :
“ Ah dear lord, and sweet Saint Charity!" Again, in The Downfall of Robert Earl of Huntington, 1601 :
“Therefore, sweet master, for Saint Charity.” Again, in A lytell Geste of Robyn Hode :
“ Lete me go, then sayd the sheryf,
“For saint Charytè -" Again, ibid..
Gyve us some of your spendynge,
“ For saynt Charytè." I find, by Gisse, used as an adjuration, both by Gascoigne in his Poems, by Preston in his Cambyses, and in the comedy of See Me and See Me Not, 1618:
By Gisse I swear, were I so fairly wed," &c. Again, in King Edward III. 1599 :
· By Gis, fair lords, ere many daies be past,” &c. Again, in Heywood's 23d Epigram, Fourth Hundred : “Nay, by Gis, he looketh on you maister, quoth he."
Steevens. Mr. Steevens's first assertion, though disputed by a catholick friend, can be supported by infallible authority. “We read," says Dr. Douglas," in the martyrology on the first of August• Romæ passio sanctarum virginum, Fidei, Spei, et Charitatis, quæ sub Hadriano principe martyriæ coronam adeptæ sunt.'”
Criterion, p. 68. Ritson. In the scene between the Bastard Faulconbridge and the friars and nunne, in the First Part of The Troublesome Raigne of King John, (edit. 1779, p. 256, &c.) “the nunne swears by Gis, and the friers pray to Saint Withold (another obsolete saint mentioned in King Lear,) and adjure him by Saint Charitie to hear them."
BLACKSTONE. “ By Gis." There is not the least mention of any saint whose name corresponds with this, either in the Roman Calendar, the service in Usum Sarum, or in the Benedictionary of Bishop Athelwold. I believe the word to be only a corrupted abbreviation of Jesus, the letters J. H. S. being anciently all that was set down to denote that sacred name, on altars, the covers of books, &c. RIDLEY.
Though Gis may be, and I believe is, only a contraction of Jesus, there is certainly a Saint Gislen, with whose name it corresponds. Ritson.
9 By cock,] This is likewise a corruption of the sacred name,
Quoth she, before you tumbled me,
An thou hadst not come to my bed.
Oph. I hope, all will be well. We must be patient: but I cannot choose but weep, to think, they should p lay him i'the cold ground: My brother shall know of it, and so I thank you for your good counsel. Come, my coach! Good night, ladies'; good night, sweet ladies: good night, good night.
[Exit. King. Follow her close ; give her good watch, I pray you.
+ Quarto, would.
Many instances of it are given in a note at the beginning of the fifth Act of The Second Part of King Henry IV. STEVENS. [He answers.] These words I have added from the quartos.
Steevens. ? Come, MY COACH! Good night, ladies ; &c.] In Marlowe's Tamburlaine, 1590, Zabina in her frenzy uses the same expression : “Hell, make ready my coach, my chair, my jewels, I come, I come.” Malone.
3 When sorrows come, &c.] In Ray's Proverbs we find, Misfortunes seldom come alone," as a proverbial phrase.
For good Polonius' death; and we have done but
greenly, In hugger-mugger to inter him: Poor Ophelia Divided from herself, and her fair judgment; Without the which we are pictures, or mere beasts. Last, and as much containing as all these, Her brother is in secret come from France: Feeds on his wonder, keeps himself in clouds,
* - but GreenLY,] But unskilfully ; with greenness ; that is, without maturity of judgment. Johnson.
s In HUGGER-MUGGER to inter him :] All the modern editions that I have consulted, give it :
" In private to inter him—," That the words now replaced are better, I do not undertake to prove: it is sufficient that they are Shakspeare's : if phraseology is to be changed as words grow uncouth by disuse, or gross by vulgarity, the history of every language will be lost : we shall no longer have the words of any author; and, as these alterations will be often unskilfully made, we shall in time have very little of his meaning. Johnson.
On this just observation I ground the restoration of a gross and unpleasing word in a preceding passage, for which Mr. Pope substituted groan. See
p. 326, n. 9. The alteration in the present instance was made by the same editor. Malone. This expression is used in The Revenger's Tragedy, 1609:
he died like a politician,
" In hugger-mugger." Again, in Harrington's Ariosto:
“ So that it might be done in hugger-mugger. Shakspeare probably took the expression from the following passage in Sir Thomas North's translation of Plutarch :-“ Antonius thinking that his body should be honourably buried, and not in hugger-mugger."
It appears from Greene's Groundwork of Coneycatching, 1592, that to hugger was to lurk about. Steevens.
The meaning of the expression is ascertained by Florio's Italian Dictionary, 1598 : “ Dinascoso; secretly, hiddenly, in huggermugger."' MALONE. Feeds on his wonder,] The folio reads-
* Keeps on his wonderThe quarto
“ Feeds on this wonder."