Page images

I know not how much more, should be demanded; And all the other by-dependancies.

From chance to chance; but nor the time, nor place,

Will serve our long intergatories'. See,
Posthúmus anchors upon Imogen ;

And she, like harmless lightning, throws her eye
On him, her brothers, me, her master; hitting
Each object with a joy; the counterchange
Is severally in all. Let's quit this ground,
And smoke the temple with our sacrifices.-
Thou art my brother; So we'll hold thee ever.

IMO. You are my father too; and did relieve me, To see this gracious season.


All o'erjoy'd,

Save these in bonds; let them be joyful too,

For they shall taste our comfort.


I will yet do you service.


My good master,

Happy be

you !

CYM. The forlorn soldier, that so nobly fought,

He would have well becom'd this place, and grac'd The thankings of a king.

strangely expressed, the motives of you three for engaging in the batttle. So, in Romeo and Juliet,

the remedy for us both. M. MASON.

[ocr errors]

both our remedies," means

7 Will serve our long INTERGATORIES.] So the first folio. Later editors have omitted our, for the sake of the metre, I suppose; but unnecessarily; as interrogatory is used by Shakspeare as a word of five syllables. See The Merchant of Venice near the end, where in the old edition it is written intergatory.


See also vol. x. p. 445. I believe this word was generally used as one of five syllables in our author's time. To the proofs already adduced may be added the following from Novella, by Brome, Act II. Sc. I.:

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]


I am, sir,

The soldier that did company these three
In poor beseeming; 'twas a fitment for

The purpose I then follow'd ;-That I was he,
Speak, Iachimo; I had you down, and might
Have made you finish.


I am down again:

[Kneeling. But now my heavy conscience sinks my knee, As then your force did. Take that life, 'beseech


Which I so often owe: but, your ring first;
And here the bracelet of the truest princess,
That ever swore her faith.


Kneel not to me;

The power that I have on you, is to spare you;
The malice towards you, to forgive you: Live,
And deal with others better.


We'll learn our freeness of a son-in-law;

Pardon's the word to all.



Nobly doom'd:

You holp us, sir,

you did mean indeed to be our brother; Joy'd are we, that you are.

PosT. Your servant, princes.-Good my lord of Rome,

Call forth your soothsayer: As I slept, methought, Great Jupiter, upon his eagle back,


Appear'd to me, with other spritely shows "
Of mine own kindred: when I wak'd, I found
This label on my bosom; whose containing
Is so from sense in hardness, that I can
Make no collection of it; let him show
His skill in the construction.


SPRITELY Shows-] Are groups of sprites, ghostly ap pearances. STEEVENS.

9 Make no COLLECTION of it :] A collection is a corollary, a



SOOTH. Here, my good lord.

Read, and declare the meaning. SOOTH. [Reads.] When as a lion's whelp shall, to himself unknown, without seeking find, and be embraced by a piece of tender air; and when from a stately cedar shall be lopped branches, which, being dead many years shall after revive, be jointed to the old stock, and freshly grow; then shall Posthumus end his miseries, Britain be fortunate, and flourish in peace and plenty.

Thou, Leonatus, art the lion's whelp;

The fit and apt construction of thy name,
Being Leo-natus, doth import so much :
The piece of tender air, thy virtuous daughter,
Which we call mollis aer; and mollis aer
We term it mulier: which mulier I divine,
Is this most constant wife; who, even now,
Answering the letter of the oracle,

Unknown to you, unsought, were clipp'd about
With this most tender air.


This hath some seeming.

SOOTH. The lofty cedar, royal Cymbeline, Personates thee: and thy lopp'd branches point Thy two sons forth: who, by Belarius stolen, For many years thought dead, are now reviv'd,

consequence deduced from premises. So, in Sir John Davies's poem on The Immortality of the Soul:

"When she, from sundry arts, one skill doth draw;



Gath'ring from divers sights, one act of war;

From many cases like, one rule of law:

"These her collections, not the senses are." STEEVENS.

So, the Queen says to Hamlet:

[merged small][ocr errors]

Her speech is nothing,

Yet the unshaped use of it doth move

"The hearers to collection."

Whose containing means, the contents of which. M. MASON.

To the majestick cedar join'd; whose issue
Promises Britain peace and plenty.

My peace we will begin 1:-And, Caius Lucius,
Although the victor, we submit to Cæsar,
And to the Roman empire; promising

To pay our wonted tribute, from the which
We were dissuaded by our wicked queen;
Whom heavens, in justice, (both on her, and hers,)
Have laid most heavy hand 2.

1 My peace we will begin :] I think it better to read :


By peace we will begin." JOHNSON.

I have no doubt but Johnson's amendment is right.

The Sooth

sayer says, that the label promised to Britain “ peace and plenty.” To which Cymbeline replies: "We will begin with peace, to fulfil the prophecy." M. MASON.

2 WHOм heavens, in justice, (both on her, and hers,)

Have laid MOST HEAVY HAND.] i. e. have laid most heavy hand on. Thus the old copy, and thus Shakspeare certainly wrote, many such elliptical expressions being found in his works. So, in The Rape of Lucrece :


Only he hath an eye to gaze on beauty,

"And dotes on whom he looks [on], 'gainst law and duty." Again, in Richard III. :

"Men shall deal unadvisedly sometimes,

"Which after hours give leisure to repent [of]."

Again, in The Winter's Tale:


even as bad as those,

"That vulgars give boldest titles [to].”

Again, ibidem:

[ocr errors]

The queen is spotless

"In that which you accuse her [of]."

Again, in King Henry VIII. :

[ocr errors]

whoever the king removes,

"The cardinal instantly will find employment [for].” Again, in Othello :

"What conjurations and what mighty magick

"I won his daughter [with]."

Mr. Pope, instead of the lines in the text, substituted

"On whom heaven's justice (both on her and hers)
"Hath lay'd most heavy hand."

and this capricious alteration was adopted by all the subsequent editors.


SOOTH. The fingers of the powers above do tune The harmony of this peace. The vision

Which I made known to Lucius, ere the stroke
Of this yet scarce-cold battle, at this instant
Is full accomplish'd: For the Roman eagle,
From south to west on wing soaring aloft,
Lessen'd herself, and in the beams o' the sun
So vanish'd: which foreshow'd our princely eagle,
The imperial Cæsar, should again unite

His favour with the radiant Cymbeline,
Which shines here in the west.


Laud we the gods;

And let our crooked smokes climb to their nostrils
From our bless'd altars! Publish we this peace
To all our subjects. Set we forward: Let

A Roman and a British ensign wave

Friendly together: so through Lud's town march:
And in the temple of great Jupiter

Our peace we'll ratify; seal it with feasts.-
Set on there:-Never was a war did cease,
Ere bloody hands were wash'd, with such a peace.


3 — THIS YET Scarce-cold battle,] Old copy-yet this, &c. The correction was made by Mr. Rowe, MALONE,

4 This play has many just sentiments, some natural dialogues, and some pleasing scenes, but they are obtained at the expence of much incongruity. To remark the folly of the fiction, the absurdity of the conduct, the confusion of the names, and manners of different times, and the impossibility of the events in any system of life, were to waste criticism upon unresisting imbecility, upon faults too evident for detection, and too gross for aggravation. JOHNSON.

A book entitled "Westward for Smelts, or the Waterman's Fare of mad Merry Western Wenches, whose Tongues albeit, like Bell-clappers, they never leave ringing, yet their Tales are sweet, and will much content you: Written by kinde Kitt of Kingstone, -was published at London in 1603; and again, in 1620. To the second tale in that volume Shakspeare seems to have been

« PreviousContinue »