Page images

regards the latter Part, some handfuls at least, I doubt not, still remain to be gleaned in the same extensive field; while the former Part contains little more than a specimen of the ore which the same mine, if thoroughly worked, might be made to produce.

* The Bible and Shakspeare,' said one of the best and most esteemed prelates that ever sat upon the English bench—Dr. John Sharp, in the reign of Queen Anne—' The Bible and Shakspeare have made me Archbishop of York.' The Shakspeare of Greek Comedy-Aristophanes—is well known to have been a favourite author of the most celebrated preacher of the ancient church, S. John Chrysostom, some time patriarch of Constantinople. Under the shelter of high and venerated authorities such as these the present writer ventures to hope he may escape censure for allowing his name to appear upon the

of this volume. He had intended to put it forth anonymously, but his intention has been overruled by the publishers.


Marcb 1864.



[ocr errors]

HE speedy call for a second edition of this book has

encouraged me to revise the whole; and in so doing, I have introduced some additions with the view of

making it more complete, and, consequently, as I would hope, less unworthy of public favour.

Since the publication of the former edition, I have discovered that two works more or less similar in design to the Second Part of my undertaking had previously appeared; and a third was published, I believe, almost simultaneously with it. I think it due to the authors of those works to make this statement, and to add that in the fruit of their labours, which I have examined with much interest, I have been pleased to find still more thorough confirmation of the conclusion at which I had myself independently arrived.

Among the remarks offered, generally in the kindest spirit, upon this volume, more than one of my critics would seem to have forgotten, or misconceived, the purpose of its First Part. I would, therefore, repeat that the proof of Shakspeare's knowledge and use of the Bible is not supposed to lie in his employing words and phrases commonly current at the time in which he lived, and still less (for chronological reasons) in his use of words and phrases peculiar to the revised Translation of the Scriptures, published in 1611. And the design of that First Part is simply to contribute to the verbal illustration of the Bible from the language of Shakspeare, and to the verbal illustration of Shakspeare from our translation of the Bible.

August 1864.

« PreviousContinue »