« PreviousContinue »
331. So excellent a king ; that was, to this,
Hyperion to a Satyrimo] This similitude at first sight seems to be a little far-fetched; but it has an exquisite beauty. By the Satyr is meant Pan, as by Hyperion, Apollo; Pan and Apollo.were brothers, and the allusion is to the contention between those gods for the preference in musick, WARBURTON
All our English poets are guilty of the same false quantity, and call Hypěrion Hyperion; at least the only instance I have met with to the contrary is in the old play of Fuimus Troes, 1633:
“-Blow, gentle, Africus,
STEEVENS. 333. In former editions,
That ke permitted not the winds of heaven] This is a sophistical reading, copied from the players in some of the modern editions, for want of understanding the poet, whose text is corrupt in the old impressions : all of which that I have had the fortune to see, con cur in reading,
So loving to my mother,
Visit her face too roughly. Beteene is a corruption without doubt, but not so inveterate a one, but that, by the change of a single letter, and the separation of two words mistakenly jumbled together, I am verily persuaded, I have retrieved the poet's reading That he might not let e'en the winds of heaven, &c.
So in the enterlude of The Lyfe and Repentance of Marie Magdalaine, &c. by Lewis Wager, 1567:
“ But evermore they were unto me very tender,
STEÉ VENS. So, again, in Marston's Insatiate Countess, 1603:
she had a lord, “ Jealous that the air should ravish her chaste looks."
MALONE. Notwithstanding the ingenuity of Mr. Theobald's conjecture, I believe the old reading to be the true
The rejected word occurs in a Letter of Sir John Paston to his Brother, though, as I conceive, not rightly explained by Mr. Fenn. See Vol. II. let. 30, p. 30.
“ As for Mestresse Kateryne Dudle, I have many tymes recomandyd yow to hyr, and she is noo thynge displeasyd w' itt; she rekkythe not howe many Gentylmen love hyr, she is ffull of love, I have betyn the mat' ffor yow, your onknowleche as I tolde hyr.--"
To beteene, in Shakspere, signifies admit :-as used by Sir John Pastor, to impart.
HENLEY. 341. Like Niobe, all tears :- -] Shakspere caught this idea from an ancient ballad entitled, The falling out of Lovers is the renewing of Love :
“ Now I, like weeping Niobe,
“ May wash my handes in teares,” &c. Of this ballad Amantium iræ, &c. is the burden.
-I'll change that name—] I'll be your seryant, you shall be
JOHNSON, 357. what make you -] A familiar phrase for what are you doing.
JOHNSON 363. -good even, sir.] So the copies. Sir T. Hanmer and Dr. Warburton put it good morning. The alteration is of no importance, but all licence is dangerous. There is no need of any change. Be. tween the first and eighth scene of this act it is appa- , rent that a natural day must pass, and now much of it is already over, there is nothing that can determine. The king has held a council. It may now as well be evening as morning.
JOHNSON. 373. = the funeral bakd meats] It was anciently the general custom to give a cold entertainment to mourners at a funeral. In distant counties this practice is continued among the yeomanry. See The Tra. gique Hisiorie of the Fairie Valeria of London, 1598 : “ His çorpes was with funerall pompe conveyed to the church, and there sollemnly entered, nothing omitted which necessitje or custom could claime; a serinon, a banquet, and like observations."
COLLINS. 375. -dearest] For direst, most dreadful, most dangerous.
JOHNSON. Dearest is most immediate, consequential, important. So in Romeo and Juliet :
--a ring that I must use “ In dear employment." Again, in Beaumont and Fletcher's Maid in the Mill:
“ You meet your dearest enemy in love,
“ With all his hate about him." STEEVENS 379. In my mind's eye,- ] This expression occurs again in our author's Rape of Lucrece:
-himself behind “ Was left unseen, save to the eye of mind." Ben Jonson has borrowed it in his Masque called Love's Triumph through Callipolis:
« As only by the mind's eye may be seen." Telemachus lamenting the absence of Ulysses, is represented in like manner:
'Οσσομένος πατέρ εσθλόν ένα φρεσίν,- STEEVENS. 382. I shall not look upon his like again.] Mr. Holt proposes to read, from an emendation by Sir Thomas Samwell, Bart. of Upton near Northampton :
Eye shall not look upon his like again ;" and thinks it is more in the true spirit of Shakspere, than the other.
STEEVENS. So St. Paul : “ Eye hath not seen, ear hath not heard," &c. 387. Season your admiration—] That is, temper it.
JOHNSON. 394. In the dead waste and middle of the night,] The quarto, 1637, reads-vast, which may be right. So, in The Tempest :
-urchins, “ Shall for that vast of night that they may work,
« All exercise on thee.” The folio has not waste, but wast,
396. Arm'd at all points] Thus the folio, The quartos-armed at point.
STEEVENS, 401, with the act of fear,] Shak spere could never write so improperly as to call the passion of fear, the act of fear. Without doubt the true reading is,
with th' effect of fear. WARBURTON. Here is an affectation of subtilty without accuracy, Fear is every day considered as an agent. Fear laid hold on him ; fear drove him away. If it were proper to be rigorous in examining trifles, it might be replied, that Shakspere would write more erroneously, if he wrote by the direction of this critick; they were not distilled, whatever the word may mean, by the effect of fear; for that distillation was itself the effect; fear was the cause, the active cause that distilled them by that force of operation which we strictly call act involun. tary, and power in involuntary agents, but popularly call act in both. But of this too much. JOHNSON. The folio reads-bestil'd.
Steevens. - 465. My father's spirit in arms!- -] From what went before, I once hinted to Mr, Garrick, that these words might be spoken in this manner: My father's spirit! in arms! all is not well.
WHALLEY. 478. The perfume, and suppliance of a minute ;] Thus the quarto : the folio has it,
Sweet, not lasting,
JOHNSON. The perfume, and suppliance of a minute ; i. c. what is supplied to us for a minute. The idea seems