Page images

• Arise fair sun, and kill the envious moon,

Who is already sick and pale with grief.'
Douce quotes from the Prologue to Lydgate's Siege of Thebes:

• And was also in thopposicion
Of Lucina the Moone, moist and pale

That many shoures fro heauen made auaile.' 105. That, so that. See iii. 2. 417.

Ib. rheumatic diseases, says Malone, signified in Shakespeare's time, not what we now call rheumatism, but distillations from the head, catarrhs, &c.' He quotes from the Sydney Memorials, i. 94, where the health of Sir Henry Sydney is described : “He hath verie much distemporid divers parts of his bodie; as namelie, his hedde, his stomack, &c. And therby is always subject to distillacions, coughes, and other rumatick diseases.' It would be more correct to say that the term included all this in addition to what is now understood by it. Cotgrave has ‘Rumatique : com. Rhewmaticke; troubled with a Rhewme'; and he defines 'Rume: f. A Rhewme, Catarrhe; Pose, Murre.' The accent is on the first syllable, as in Venus and Adonis, 135:

• O'erworn, despised, rheumatic and cold.' 106. thorough. See lines 3 &c.

Ib. this distemperature, this disturbance between Oberon and Titania ; not the perturbation of the elements. Compare Pericles, v. I. 27:

• Upon what ground is his distemperature ?' where it is used of the disturbance of mind caused by grief. Again, Romeo and Juliet, ii. 3. 40:

• Therefore thy earliness doth me assure

Thou art uproused by some distemperature.' See also Hamlet, iii. 2. 312:

Guil. The king, sir,Ham. Ay, sir, what of him ? Guil. Is in his retirement marvellous distempered. Ham. With drink, sir ? Guil. No, my lord, rather with choler.' 109. Hiems'. So Love's Labour's Lost, v. 2. 901 : This side is Hiems, Winter.'

Ib. thin and icy crown. The old copies read.chinne' or 'chin,' which Steevens saw was not the place for a chaplet. Tyrwhitt proposed thin,' that is, thin-hair’d; in support of which Steevens quoted King Lear (iv. 7. 36):

• To watch-poor perdu !

With this thin helm ?
And Richard II (iii. 2. 112]:

• White-beards have arm’d their thin and hairless scalps
Against thy majesty,'

He might have added Timon of Athens, iv. 3. 144:

Thatch your poor thin roofs With burthens of the dead.' 112. childing. autumn, autumn that brings forth the products of the year. See Sonnet xcvii. 6, quoted below. Holt White quotes Fairfax's Tasso, xviii. 26:

• An hundreth plants beside (euen in his sight)

Childed an hundreth Nymphes, so great, so dight.' He adds, ' Childing is an old term in botany, when a small flower grows out of a large one'; and so far his explanation is correct, but he misses the point and falls into error when he says the childing autumn therefore means the autumn which unseasonably produces flowers on those of summer,' whereas it means the autumn which seasonably produces its own fruits. It is the change of seasons which makes it abnormal.

113. mazed, bewildered, thrown into confusion. Compare i Henry VI,

iv. 2. 47:

[ocr errors]

• A little herd of England's timorous deer,

Mazed with a yelping kennel of French curs.' 114. By their increase, by their products or fruits, which formerly distinguished them. Malone quotes Sonnet xcvii. 6:

The teeming autumn, big with rich increase,

Bearing the wanton burden of the prime.' So also Venus and Adonis, 169, 170:

Upon the earth's increase why shouldst thou feed,

Unless the earth with thy increase be fed ?' 116. debate, quarrel. Compare 2 Henry IV, iv. 4. 2:

* Now, lords, if God doth give successful end

To this debate that bleedeth at our doors.' 118, it lies in you, it is in your power.

So Sonnet ci. 10:

· For 't lies in thee To make him much outlive a gilded tomb.' 121, henchman, a page. The word is of uncertain origin. Spelman derives it from Hengstman, equi curator. Percy in a note to the Earl of Northumberland's Household Book (p. 432) says, “Haunsmen,' or 'Hanshmen' (more frequently written `Henchmen’ or · Henxmen') was the old English Name for the Pages, so called from their standing at their Lords Haunch or side. The Earl of Northumberland had three young Gentlemen who attended him in this capacity, and are classed along with his Wards, &c. and next to his own Sons.' Reed quotes from Lodge's Illustrations (i. 358) a letter from the Earl of Shrewsbury, dated 11 December, 1565, in which he says: “Her Highnes hathe of late, wherat some doo moche marvell, dissolved the auncient office of henchemen. In his note upon this, Lodge remarks that the henchmen were a certain number of youths, the sons of

[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]


gentlemen, who stood or walked near the person of the monarch on all public occasions.' In Sherwood's English-French Dictionary (Cotgrave, 1632), we find, ‘A hench-man, or hench-boy. Page d'honneur; qui marche devant quelque Seigneur de grand authorité.' 123. volaress, that had taken

Compare Pericles, iv. prologue 4:

• His woeful queen we leave at Ephesus,

Unto Diana there a votaress.' So Milton, Comus, 189, uses 'votarist':

• The grey-hooded Even, Like a sad votarist in palmer's weed.' 124. spiced, laden with spices, balmy. 127. the embarked traders on the flood, the merchants embarked upon the For this position of the participle see Timon of Athens, iv. 2. 13:

A dedicated beggar to the air': and note on Richard II, iii. 2. 8 (Clar. Press ed.). And for 'flood' compare The Merchant of Venice, i. 1. 10:

Like signiors and rich burghers on the flood.' 131. Following,-her womb &c. The words placed between dashes are in a parenthesis in the quartos and folios. Steevens adopted Kenrick's worse than unnecessary alteration, “ Following her womb &c.'

138. intend you stay. To' is frequently omitted in such constructions. See Abbott's Shakespeare Grammar, $ 349, and compare The Tempest, iii. 1. 63:

• Than to suffer

The flesh-fly blow my mouth.' And King Lear, iv. 5. 35:

I pray, desire her call her wisdom to her.' 140. round, a circular dance. So Macbeth, iv. I. 130 :

• I'll charm the air to give a sound,

While you perform your antic round.' 146. thou shalt not from this grove, that is, go from this grove. For the use of the preposition and an auxiliary verb without the verb of motion, see Hamlet, ii, 2. 521: 'It shall to the barber's, with your beard. Abbott, § 405.

147. injury has here something of the meaning of insult and not of wrong only. Compare iii. 2. 148, and the adjective • injurious' in the sense of 'insulting, insolent,' in iii. 2. 195. In the Authorised Version of 1 Timothy i. 13, “injurious' is the rendering of the Greek ÜBplotńs.

148 &c. For the supposed reference in this passage to Mary Queen of Scots and Elizabeth, see Preface.

150. a mermaid. For the destructive quality of the mermaid's song, compare Comedy of Errors, iii. 2. 45;

O, train me not, sweet mermaid, with thy note,

To drown me in thy sister's flood of tears. And 3 Henry VI, iii. 2. 186:

• I'll drown more sailors than the mermaid shall.' Cotgrave gives •Serene: f. A Syren, or Mermaid.'

Ib. on a dolphin's back, like Arion, who charmed the fish with his song and was saved froin drowning. See Twelfth Night, i. 2. 15.

151. breath, voice; used of singing as in Twelfth Night, ii. 3. 21 : •I had rather than forty shillings I had such a leg, and so sweet a breath to sing, as the fool has.'

152. civil, softened and as it were civilized by the refining influence of music. Compare iii. 2. 147, and As You Like It, iii. 2. 136 (116 Clar. Press ed.):

· Tongues I'll hang on every tree,

That shall civil sayings show.' 153. certain, here used of an indefinite number, as in The Tempest, v. I. 55:

• I'll break my staff, Bury it certain fathoms in the earth.' 156. the cold moon, representative of the goddess of chastity.

157. all arm’d, not in full armour but with all his usual weapons. • All' is merely emphatic. 159. loosed, let go; an archery term. Compare Henry V, i. 2. 207:

As many arrows, loosed several ways,

Come to one mark.' 160. As, as if. So Hamlet, iv. 7. 88:

• As had he been incorpsed and demi-natured

With the brave beast.'
161. might, could, was able. So King John, ii. 1. 325:

· Heralds, from off our towers we might behold,
From first to last, the onset and retire

Of both your armies.'
162. votaress, having taken the vow of chastity.

See 1. 123. 164. fancy-free, free from the power of love. See i. 1. 155.

167. Shakespeare may have taken the idea of the change of colour in the flower from the change of the mulberry in the story of Pyramus and Thisbe as told by Ovid.

168. love-in-idleness is one of the names given to the pansy or heartsease in Lyte's Herball (1595): .in English Pances, Loue in Idlenes, and Harts ease.' Tollet says it was in use in his time in Warwickshire. Gerarde (Herball, p. 705, ed. 1597) calls the flower · Harts ease, Pansies, Liue in Idlenes, Cull me to you, and three faces in one hood.'

171. or ... or, either ... or. Compare The Tempest, i. 2. 249:

• Without or grudge or grumblings.' As You Like It; i. 2. 272:

'Or Charles or something weaker masters thee.' 174. the leviathan. The margins of the Bibles in Shakespeare's day explained leviathan as a whale, and so no doubt he thought it.

175. To put a girdle round about the earth' was a common expression for making a voyage round the world. It occurs, as Steevens points out, in Chapman's Bussy D'Ambois, which was first printed in 1607 (Works, ii. 6), To put a Girdle round about the world.' See also Dekker, If this be not a good play, the devil is in it (Works, iii. 277, ed. 1873):

• About the world
My trauailes make a girdle (perfect round:).'
Staunton quotes from Shirley's Humorous Courtier, i. 1:

Thou hast been a traveller, and convers'd
With the Antipodes, almost put a girdle

About the world.' 182. the soul of love, the most intense and passionate love. Compare 1 Henry IV, iv, 1. 50:

• The very bottom and the soul of hope.' And Troilus and Cressida, iii, 2. 141 :

. See, see, your silence,
Cunning in dumbness, from my weakness draws
My very soul of counsel.'

slayeth. So Theobald, adopting Thirlby's conjecture, corrected the stay.

stayeth' of the quartos and folios. If any justification were required it would be found in iii. 2. 60, 64.

192. wood, mad, raging; A. S. wód; Sc. wod or wud. Compare Venus and Adonis, 740:

• Life-poisoning pestilence and frenzies wood.' i Henry VI, iv. 7. 33 :

How the young whelp of Talbot's, raging wood,

Did flesh his puny sword in Frenchmen's blood !' The first quarto reads "wodde. Compare also Chaucer, C. T. 636 (ed. Tyrwhitt):

• Than wolde he speke and crie as he were wood'; and 1659 :

Thou mightest wenen, that this Palamon

In his fighting were as a wood leon.' 195. adamant, loadstone. Compare Troilus and Cressida, iii. 2. 186:

• As true as steel, as plantage to the moon,
As sun to day, as turtle to her mate,
As iron to adamant, as earth to the centre.'

190. slay ..


[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »