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RICHMOND's Tent opens, and discovers him and his.
Richm. All comfort that the dark night can afford,
Stan. I, by attorney,5 bless thee from thy mother,
4 All comfort that the dark night can afford,
“ The best and wholesomest spirits of the night
mortal-staring war,] Thus the old copies. I suppose, by mortal-staring war is meant-war that looks big, or stares fatally on its victims. Steevens.
I suspect the poet wrote-mortal-scaring war. Malone.
I adhere to the old reading. So, in Antony and Cleopatra, Enobarbus says of Antony, who is issuing out to battle
“Now he 'll out-stare the lightning.” Again, in The Tempest;
why stand you “In this strange stare?” Steedens. 71, as I may,
With best advantage will deceive the time,] I will take the best opportunity to elude the dangers of this conjuncture. Johnson.
8 Lest, being seen, thy brother tender George
Be executed -) So Holinshed after Hall: “ When the said lord Stanley would have departed into his country to visit his fa. milie, and to recreate and refreshe his spirits, as he openly said, (but the truth was to the intent to be in a perfite readinesse 10
Farewel: The leisure and the fearful time
Richm. Good lords, conduct him to his regiment:
join the earle of Richmonde at his first arrival in Englande,) the king in no wise would suffer him to depart before he had left as an hostage in the court, George Stanley, lord Strange, his first begotten son and beir.".
* The lord Stanley lodged in the same town, (Stafford] and hearing that the earle of Richmond was marching thitherward, gave to him place, dislodging him and his,- to avoid all suspicion, being afraide least if he should be seen openly to be a factor or ayder to the earle, his son-in-law, before the day of battayle, that king Richard, which yet not utterly put him in diffidence and mistrust, would put to some evil death his son and heir apparent."
The young nobleman whom the poet calls George Stanley, was created Baron Strange, in right of his wife, by King Edward IV, in 1482. Malone.
The leisure and the fearful time Cuts off the ceremonious vows of love,] We have still a phrase equivalent to this, however harsh it may seem, I would do this, if leisure woulil permit, where leisure, as in this passage, stands for want of leisure. So again:
More than I have said, -
- Forbids to dwell upon.' -Johnson. That is, the small degree of leisure we have. M. Mason. i Lest leaden slumber-) So, in our author's Rape of Lucrece: “Now leaden slumber with life's strength doth fight.'
Malone. -peise me down to-morrow,] Thus the old copies. The modern editions read-poize. To peize, i. e. to weigh down, from peser, French.
I meet with this word in the old play of The Raigne of King Ed. ward the Third, 1596:
“ And peize their deeds with heavy weight of lead." Again, in All for Money, 1574:
“ Then if you counterpeaze me learning with money." Again, in Christopher Middleton's Legend of Humphrey Duke of Glocester, 1600:
“Nor was her schooles peis'd down with golden waights." See notes on The Merchant of Venice, Vol. IV, p. 368. Steevens.
When I should mount with wings of victory:
[Exeunt Lords, &c. with Stan.
Sixth, rises between the two Tents.
[To K. Rich.
- bruising irons -] The allusion is to the ancient mace.
Henley. 4 Ere I let fall the windows of mine eyes ;] So, in Romeo and Juliet :
thy eyes' windows fall " Like death Steevens. 5 The Ghost &c.] This circumstance is likewise found in Ni. chols's Legend of King Richard III, (inserted in The Mirrour for Magistrates, edit. 1610,) and was apparently imitated from Shak, speare:
“ As in my tent on slumbring bed I lie,
“ Horrid aspects appear'd unto mine eye:
“By death had sent to their untimely grave,
“ That they on guilty wretch might vengeance have.”. His terror on waking is likewise very forcibly described.
Drayton, in the 22d Song of his Polyolbion, may likewise have borrowed from our author:
“ Where to the guilty king, the black forerunning night,
Appear the dreadful ghosts of Henry and his son, “Of his own brother George and his two nephews, done “ Most cruelly to death; and of his wife, and friend “Lord Hastings, with pale hands prepar'd as they would
rend “ Him piece-meal; at which oft he roareth in his sleep."
Steevens. The account given by Polydore Virgil, which was copied by
Think, how thou stab’dst me in my prime of youth
The Ghost of King HENRY the Sixth rises.
[To K. Rich.
Virtuous and holy, be thou conqueror! [TO RICHM.
The Ghost of CLARENCE rises.
[70 K. Rich. Hall and Holinshed, is as follows: “ The fame went, that he had the same night (the night before the battle of Bosworth) a dreadful and a terrible dream; for it seemed to him being aslepe, that he saw diverse ymages lyke terrible devilles, which pulled and haled him, not sufferynge him to take any quiet or reste. The which straunge vision not so sodaynly strake his heart with a sodayne feare, but it stuffed his head and troubled his mind with many busy and dreadful imaginations. And least that it might be suspected that he was abashed for fear of his enemies, and for that cause looked so piteously, le recited and declared to his familiar friends, of the morning, his wonderfull vysion, and fearfull dreame." I quote from Holinshed, because he was Shakspeare's authority.
Polydore Virgil, as I have already observed, began to write his history about twenty years after Richard's death Malone.
See p. 125, 1. 5. Steevens. 6 Let me sit heavy on thy soul to-morrow.'] So, in King Richard II:
“Be Mowbray's sins so heavy in his bosom." Steevens. ? By thee was punched full of deadly holes: ] The word punched, which sounds but meanly to our ears, is also employed by Chapman in his version of the sixth Iliad:
with a goad he punch'd each furious dame.” Steevens. 8. Harry that prophecy'd thou shoul:l'st be king,] The prophecy, to which this allusion is made, was uttered in one of the parts of Henry the Sixth Fohnson.
See Vol. X, p. 393, n. 3. Malone.
9 Doth comfort thee in thy sleep; Live, and flourish!] Surely, we should read with Sir Thomas Hanmer:
Doth comfort thee in sleep; Live thot and flourish! Steerens
I, that was wash'd to death with fulsome wine, 1
[T0 K. Rich.
[To K. Rich. Vaugh. Think upon Vaughan; and, with guilty fear, pointlefy Let fall thy
lance ! Despair, and die! [To K. Rich. All. Awake! and think, our wrongs in Richard's bo
[To Richm. Will conquer him ;-awake, and win the day!
The Ghost of HASTINGS rises.
[T. K. Rich
Quiet untroubled soul, awake, awake! [To Richm.
The Ghosts of the Two young Princes rise.
- with fulsome wine,] Fulsome, was sometimes used, I think, in the sense of unctuous. The wine in which the body of Clarence was thrown, was Malinsey. Malone.
If Clarence had been choked by this wine, he might fairly enough have employed the epithet fulsome in its vulgar and accepted sense.
e.-Shakspeare, however, seems to have forgot him. self. The Duke (as appears from Act I, sc. ult.) was killed before he was thrown into the Malmsey butt, and consequently could not be washed to death. Steevens.
2 And fall thy edgeless sword;] Fall, in the present instance, is a verb active, signifying to drop, or let fall. So, in Othello:
" If that the earth could teem with woman's tears,
“ Each drop she falls would prove a crocodile.” Steevens, 3 Let us be lead within thy bosom, Richard,] [The first folio &c.