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To-morrow, or next day, they will be here.
Duch. I long with all my heart to see the prince;
Stratford. It is highly improbable that the editor of the folio should have been apprized of the historical fact above stated; and much more likely that he made the alteration for the sake of improving the metre, regardless of any other circumstance. How little he attended to topography appears from a preceding scene, in which Gloster, though in London, talks of sending a messenger to that town, instead of Ludlow. See p. 71, n. 6.
By neither reading can the truth of history be preserved, and therefore we may be sure that Shakspeare did not mean in this instance to adhere to it. According to the present reading, the scene is on the day on which the King was journeying from Northampton to Stratford; and of course the Messenger's account of the peers being seiz'd, &c. which was on the next day after the King had lain at Stratford, is inaccurate. If the folio reading be adopted, the scene is indeed placed on the day on which the King was seized; but the Archbishop is supposed to be apprized of a fact which before the entry of the Messenger he manifestly does not know, and which Shakspeare did not intend he should appear to know; namely, the Duke of Gloster's coming to Stony-Stratford the morning after the King had lain there, taking him forcibly back to Northampton, and seizing the Lords Rivers, Grey, &c. The truth is, that the Queen herself, the person most materially interested in the welfare of her son, did not hear of the King's being carried back from Stony-Stratford to Northampton till about midnight of the day on which this violence was offered him by his uncle. See Hall, Edward V, fol. 6. Historical truth being thus deviated from, we have a right to presume that Shakspeare in this instance did not mean to pay any attention to it, and that the reading furnished by the quarto was that which came from his pen: nor is it possible that he could have made the alteration which the folio exhibits, it being utterly inconsistent with the whole tenor and scope of the present scene. If the Archbishop had known that the young King was carried back to Northampton, he must also have known that the lords who accompanied him, were sent to prison; and instead of eagerly asking the Messenger in p. 76, - What news ?” might have informed him of the whole transaction.
The truth of history is neglected in another instance also. The Messenger says, the Lords Rivers, Grey, &c. bad been sent my Gloster to Pomfret, whither they were not sent till some time af. terwards, they being sent at first, according to Sir Thomas More, (whose relation Hall and Holinshed transcribed) “ into the North country, into diverse places to prison, and afterwards all to Pontefract.”
The reading of the test is that of the quarto 1597. Malone.
Shakspeare does not always attend to the propriety of his own alterations. As historical truth, therefore, which ever reading be chosen, must be violated, I am content with such an arrangement
I hope, he is much grown since last I saw him.
Q. Eliz. But I hear, no; they say, my son of York Hath almost overta'en him in his growth.
York. Ay, mother, but I would not have it so. Duch. Why, my young cousin ? it is good to grow
York. Grandam, one night, as we did sit at supper, My uncle Rivers talk'd how I did grow More than my brother; Ay, quoth my uncle Gloster, Small herbs have grace, great weeds do grow apace: And since, methinks, I would not grow so fast, Because sweet flowers are slow, and weeds make haste.
Duch. 'Good faith, 'good faith, the saying did not hold
Arch. And so, no doubt, he is, my gracious madam.
York. Now, by my troth, if I had been remember'd, 6
Duch. How, my young York? I pr’ythee, let me hearit.
York. Marry, they say, my uncle grew so fast,
Duch. I pr’ythee, pretty York, who told thee this?
as renders the versification smoothest. Where sense cannot claim a preference, a casting vote may be safely given in favour of sound.
Steevens. 5--the wretched'st thing,] Wretched is here used in a sense yet retained in familiar language, for paltry, pitiful, being below expectation. Fohnson.
Rather, the weakest, most puny, least thriving. Ritson.
6 - been remember'd,] To be remembered is, in Shakspeare, to have one's memory quick, to have one's thoughts about one.
Fohnson. 7 A parlous boy:] Parlous is keen, shrewd. So, in Law Tricks, &c. 1608:
“ A parlous youth, sharp and satirical.” Steevens.
Arch. Good madam, be not angry with the child.
Enter a Messenger. 9
Here comes a messenger: IV hat news?
Mess. Such news, my lord,
How doth the prince?
What is thy news? Mess. Lord Rivers, and lord Grey, are sent to Pomfret, With them sir Thomas Vaughan, prisoners.
Duch. Who hath committed them?
The mighty dukes, Goster and Buckingham.
Q. Eliz. For what offence ?1 Mess. The sum of all I can, I have disclos’d; \Vhy, or for what, the nobles were committed, is all unknown to me, my gracious lady.
Q. Eliz. Ah me, I see the ruin of my house! The tiger pow hath seiz'd the gentle hind;2
It is a corruption of perilous, dangerous ; the reading of the old quartos. The Queen evidently means to chide him. Ritson.
8 Pitchers have ears.] Shakspeare has not quoted this proverbial saying correctly. It appears from A Dialogue both pleasaunt and pitiefull, by William Bulleyn), 1564, that the old proverb is this : * Small pitchers have great ears." Malone This proverb has already occurred in The Taming of the Shrew;
“Pitchers have ears, and I have many servants.” Ritson. .9 Enter a Messenger.] The quarto reads-Enter Dorset. Steevens.
1 For what offence?] This question is given to the Archbishop in former copies, but the Messenger plainly speaks to the Queen or Duchess. Yohnson.
The question is given in the quarto to the Archbishop (or Car. dinal, as he is there called, where also we have in the following speech, my gracious lady. The editor of the folio altered lady to lord; but it is more probable that the compositor prefixed Car. (the designation there of the Archbishop) to the words, “ For what offence?" instead of Qu. than that lady should have been printed in the subsequent speech instead of lord. Compositors always keep the names of the interculators in each scene readycomposed for use; and hence mistakes sometimes arise. Malone.
2 The tiger now hath seiz'd the gentle hind;] So, in our author's Rape of Lucrece:
Insulting tyranny begins to jut
Duch. Accursed and unquiet wrangling days.!
Q. Eliz. Come, come, my boy, we will to sanctuary..
Stay, I will go with you.
My gracious lady, go,
[To the Queen. And thither bear your treasure and your goods. For my part, I 'll resign unto your grace The seal I keep; And so betide to me, As well I tender you, and all of yours! Come, I 'll conduct you to the sanctuary.5 [Exeunt.
“ While she, the picture of pure piety,
Malone. 3- awless -] Not producing awe, not reverenced. To jut upon is to encroach. Johnson.
4 Or let me die, to look on death no more!!] Earth is the reading of all the copies, from the first edition put out by the players, downwards. But I have restored the reading of the old quarto in 1597, which is copied by all the other authentic quartos, by which the thought is finely and properly improved :
Or let me die, to look on death no more. Theobald. 5 I'll resign unto your grace
The seal I keep; &c.] Afterwards, howerer, this obsequious Archbishop s Rotheram) to ingratiate himself with King Richard III, put his majesty's badge, the Hog, upon the gate of the Pub. lick Library, Cambridge. Steevens.
ACT III.....SCENE I. .
The same. A Street. The Trumpets sound. Enter the Prince of Wales, Glos
TER, BUCKINGHAM, Cardinal BOURCHIER, and
chamber.? Glo. Welcome, dear cousin, my thoughts' sovereign: The weary way hath made you melancholy.
Prince. No, uncle; but our crosses on the way
Glo. Sweet prince, the untainted virtue of your years
were none. Glo. My lord, the mayor of London comes to greet
Enter the Lord Mayor, and his Train. Vay. God bless your grace with health and happy days!
6 Cardinal Bourchier,] Thomas Bourchier was made a Cardinal, and elected Archbishop of Canterbury, in 1464. He died in 1486.
Malone. 7 to your chamber.) London was anciently called Camera regis Pope.
So, in Heywood's If you know not me you know Nobody, 1633, Part II:
“ This city, our great chamber.” Steevens. This title it began to have immediately after the Norman conquest. See Coke's 4 Inst. 243, where it is styled Camera Regis; Camden's Britannia, 374; Ben Jonson's Account of King James's Entertainment in passing to his Coronation, &c. Reed. 8- jumpeth with the heart.) So, in Soliman and Perseda, 1599 : " Wert thou my friend, thy mind would jump with mine."