Page images
PDF
EPUB

Which your own coffers yield! with diseas'd ven

tures,
That play with all infirmities for gold
Which rottenness can lend nature ! such boild stuff,
As well might poison poison ! Be reveng'd;
Or she, that bore you, was no queen, and you
Recoil from your great stock.
IMO.

Reveng'd!
How should I be reveng'd? If this be true,
(As I have such a heart, that both mine ears
Must not in haste abuse,) if it be true,
How should I be reveng'd ?

8

[ocr errors]

“ He gave them for their cognizance

A purple bleeding heart,
“ In which two silver arrows seem'd

“ The same in twaine to part.
“ Thus secret were his wanton sports,

“ Thus private was his pleasure;
Thus harlots in the shape of men

“ Did waft away his treasure.” Verstegan, however, gives the following etymology of the word tomboy : Tumbe. To dance. Tumbod, danced; hereof we yet call a wench that skippeth or leapeth lyke a boy, a tomboy : our name also of tumbling cometh from hence.” Steevens.

7 hir'd with that self-exhibition, &c.] Gross strumpets, hired with the very pension which you

allow
your

husband. Johnson. - such Boil'd stuff,] The allusion is to the ancient process of sweating in venereal cases. See Timon of Athens, Act IV. Sc. III. So, in The Old Law, by Massinger:

look parboild, “ As if they came from Cupid's scalding-house." Again, in Troilus and Cressida : “Sodden business! there's a stewed phrase indeed.” Again, in Timon of Athens : “ She's e'en setting on water to scald such chickens as you are.” All this stuff about boiling, scalding, &c. is a mere play on stew, a word which is afterwards used for a brothel by Imogen.

STEEVENS. The words may mean,-such corrupted stuff; from the substantive boil. So, in Coriolanus :

boils and plagues “ Plaster you o'er ! But, I believe, Mr. Steevens's interpretation is the true one.

MALONE.

66

Lach.

Should he make me Live like Diana's priest, betwixt cold sheets 9 i Whiles he is vaulting variable ramps, In your despite, upon your purse ? Revenge it. I dedicate myself to your sweet pleasure; More noble than that runagate to your bed ; And will continue fast to your affection, Still close, as sure. IMO.

What ho, Pisanio ! Lach. Let me my service tender on your lips'.

Imo. Away !-I do condemn mine ears, that have So long attended thee.-If thou wert honourable, Thou would'st have told this tale for virtue, not For such an end thou seek'st; as base, as strange. Thou wrong'st a gentleman, who is as far From thy report, as thou from honour; and Solicit'st here a lady, that disdains Thee and the devil alike.-What ho, Pisanio!The king my father shall be made acquainted Of thy assault: if he shall think it fit, A saucy stranger, in his court, to mart As in a Romish stew ?, and to expound

9 Live like Diana's PRIEST, betwixt cold sheets ;] Sir Thomas Hanmer, supposing this to be an inaccurate expression, reads :

Live like Diana's priestess 'twixt cold sheets; ” but the text is as the author wrote it. So, in•Pericles, Prince of Tyre, Diana says:

"My temple stands at Ephesus; hie thee thither;
“There, when my maiden priests are met together," &c.

MALONE. 1 Let me my service tender on your lips.] Perhaps this is an allusion to the ancient custom of swearing servants into noble families. So, in Caltha Poetarum, &c. 1599 :

she swears him to his good abearing, “Whilst her faire sweet lips were the books of swearing."

STEEVENS. ? As in a Romish stew,] Romish was, in the time of Shakspeare, used instead of Roman. There stews at Rome in the time of Augustus. The same phrase occurs in Claudius Tiberius Nero, 1607 :

3

His beastly mind to us; he hath a court
He little cares for, and a daughter whom
He not respects at all.—What ho, Pisanio!-

Lach. O happy Leonatus! I may say ;
The credit, that thy lady hath of thee,
Deserves thy trust; and thy most perfect goodness
Her assur'd credit !-Blessed live you long !
A lady to the worthiest sir, that ever
Country call’d his ! and you his mistress, only
For the most worthiest fit! Give me your pardon.
I have spoke this, to know if
Were deeply rooted; and shall make your lord,
That which he is, new o'er : And he is one
The truest manner'd; such a holy witch,
That he enchants societies unto him 4:
Half all men's hearts are his.
Imo.

You make amends. Lach. He sits 'mongst men, like a descended

god:

your affiance

3

my mother deem'd me chang’d, “ Poor woman! in the loathsome Romish stewes : and the author of this piece seems to have been a scholar. Again, in Wit In A Constable, by Glapthorne, 1640 :

A Romish cirque, or Grecian hippodrome." Again, Thomas Drant's translation of the first epistle of the second book of Horace, 1567: “ The Romishe people wise in this, in this point only just."

STEEVENS. - and a daughter whom — ] Old copy—who. Corrected in the second folio. Malone.

such a holy witch, That he ENCHANTS societies UNTO HIM:] So, in our author's Lover's Complaint:

he did in the general bosom reign
“ Of young and old, and sexes both enchanted
“ Consents bewitch'd, ere he desire, have granted.”

MALONE. like a descended god :] So, in Hamlet :

a station like the herald Mercury New lighted on a heaven kissing-hill.” The old copy has-defended. The correction was made by the

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

He hath a kind of honour sets him off,
More than a mortal seeming. Be not angry,
Most mighty princess, that I have adventur’d
To try your taking of a false report; which hath
Honour'd with confirmation your great judgment
In the election of a sir so rare,
Which you know, cannot err: The love I bear him
Made me to fan you thus; but the gods made

you,
Unlike all others, chaffless. Pray, your pardon.

Imo. All's well, sir : Take my power i’ the court

for yours:

Iach. My humble thanks. I had almost forgot To entreat your grace but in a small request, And yet of moment too, for it concerns Your lord; myself, and other noble friends, Are partners in the business. Imo.

Pray, what is't ? Lach. Some dozen Romans of us, and your lord, (The best feather of our wing") have mingled sums, To buy a present for the emperor; Which I, the factor for the rest, have done In France : 'Tis plate, of rare device ; and jewels, Of rich and exquisite form; their values great ; And I am something curious, being strange

8

6

editor of the second folio. Defend is again printed for descend, in the last scene of Timon of Athens. Malone.

So, in Chapman's version of the twenty-third book of Homer's Odyssey :

as he were “ A god descended from the starry sphere.” Steevens. taking a - Old copy, vulgarly and unmetrically, taking of a—."

STEEVENS. - best FEATHER OF OUR WING -] So, in Churchyard's Warning to Wanderers Abroad, 1593 :

You are so great you would faine march in fielde,
“ That world should judge you feathers of one wing.

Steevens. 8 - being strange,] i.e. being a stranger. Steevens.

7

To have them in safe stowage; May it please you
To take them in protection ?
IMO.

Willingly;
And pawn mine honour for their safety; since
My lord hath interest in them, I will keep them
In my bed-chamber.
Ілсн. .

They are in a trunk,
Attended by my men: I will make bold
To send them to you, only for this night ;
I must aboard to-morrow.
IMO.

O, no, no.
Lach. Yes, I beseech; or I shall short my word,
By length’ning my return. From Gallia
I cross'd the seas on purpose, and on promise
To see your grace.
Imo.

I thank you for your pains;
But not away to-morrow?
Lach.

O, I must, madam :
Therefore, I shall beseech you, if you please
To greet your lord with writing, do't to-night ;
I have outstood my time; which is material
To the tender of our present.
IMO.

I will write.
Send your trunk to me; it shall safe be kept,
And truly yielded you: You are very welcome.

[Exeunt.

ACT II. SCENE I.

Court before CYMBELINE's Palace,

Enter Cloten, and Two Lords. Clo. Was there ever man had such luck! when I kissed the jack upon an up-cast', to be hit away!

9 — kissed the jack upon an up-cast,] He is describing his fate at bowls. The jack is the small bowl at which the others

« PreviousContinue »