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104. Every man,
After the hideous storm that follow'd, &c.] His author, Hall, says, “ Monday, 18th day of June, there blew such storms of wind and weather, that marvel was to hear; for which hideous tempest some said it was a very prognostication of trouble and hatred to come between princes.” In Henry VIII. p. 80.
WARBURTON. 114. The ambassador is silenc'd?] I understand it of the French ambassador residing in England, who, by being refused an audience, may be said to be silenc'd.
JOHNSON, 116. A proper title of a peace ;-] A fine name of a peace. Ironically.
comes that rock.] To inake the rock come is not very just.
JOHNSON. 142. butcher's cura
-] Wolsey is said to have been the son of a butcher.
JOHNSON. Dr. Grey observes, that when the death of the duke of Buckingham was reported to the emperor Charles V. he said, “ The first buck of England was worried to death by a butcher's dog." Skelton, whose satire is of the grossest kind, in Why come you not to Court, has the same reflection on the meanness of Cardinal Wolsey's birth :
“For drede of the boucher's dog,
STEEVENS, 144. -A beggar's book
Out-worths a noble's blood.] That is, the literary qualifications of a bookish beggar are more prized
than the high descent of hereditary greatness. This is a contemptuous exclamation very naturally put into the mouth of one of the ancient, unlettered, martial nobility,
JOHNSON. 152. He bores me with some trick: -] He stabs or wounds me by some artifice or fiction. JOHNSON. So, in the Life and Death of the Lord Cromwell, 1613: “ One that hath gull’d you, that hath bor'd you, sir."
-Anger is like
A full hot horse; ] So, Massinger, in the Unnatural Combat :
Let passion work, and, like a hot-rein'd horse,
- from a mouth of honour -] I will crush this base-born fellow, by the due influence of my rank, or say, that all distinction of persons is at an end,
JOHNSON. 167. Heat not a furnace, &c.] Might not Shakspere allude to Dan. iii. 22.? “ Therefore, because the king's conimandment was urgent, and the furnace exceeding hot, the flame of fire slew those men that took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego."
STEEVENS, 181. -sincere motions) - ] Honest indignation; warinth of integrity.
JOHNSON, -his mind and place Infeeling one another
-] This is very satirical, His mind he represents as highly corrupt ;
and yet he supposes the contagion of the place of first minister as adding an infection to it. WARBURTON.
193. -suggests the king our master] suggests, for excites.
WARBURTON. our court cardinal] The old copy reads, -count cardinal; which may be right.
STEEVENS. 256. John de la Court,] The name of this monk of the Chartreux was John de la Car, alias de la Court. See Holinshed, p. 863.
STEEVENS. 264. --my life is spann'd already:] To span is to gripe, or enclose in the hand; to span is also to measure by the palm and fingers. The meaning, therefore, may
either be, that hold is taken of my life, my life is in the gripe of my enemies ; or, that my time is measured, the length of my life is now determined.
JOHNSON 265. I am the shadow of poor Buckingham;
Whose figure even this instant cloud puts on,
By dark’ning my clear sun. -] These lines have passed all the editors. Does the reader understand them? By me they are inexplicable, and must be left, I fear, to some happier sagacity. If the usage of our author's time could allow figure to be taken, as now, for dignity or importance, we might read,
Whose figure even this instant cloud puts out. But I cannot please myself with any conjecture.
Another explanation may be given, somewhat harsh, but the best that occurs to me:
I am the shadow of poor Buckingham,
whose portand dignity is assumed by this cardinal, that
JOHNSON. Perhaps Shakspere has expressed the same idea more clearly in The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Antony and Cleopatra, and King John:
“ Oh, how this spring of love resembeleth
“ And, by and by, a cloud takes all away." Antony, remarking on the various appearances assumed by the flying vapours, adds,
-now thy captain is
“ But cannot hold this visible shape, my knave. Or yet more appositely in King John:
-being but the shadow of your son “ Becomes a sun, and makes your son a shadow." Such another thought appears in the famous History of Thomas Stukely, 1605:
“ He is the substance of my shadowed love."
STEEVENS. By adopting Dr. Johnson's first conjecture, “ puts out,” for “puts on," a tolerable sense may be given to these obscure lines. “ I am but the shadow of poor Buckingham: and even the figure or outline of this shadow begins now to fade away, being extin.
guished by this impending cloud, which darkens (or interposes between me and) my, clear sun; that is, the favour of my sovereign." BLACKSTONE.
268. - and the best heart of it,] Heart is not here taken for the great organ of circulation and life; but, in a common and popular sense, for the most valuable or precious part. Our author, in Hamlet, mentions the heart of heart. Exhausted and effete ground is said by the farmer to be out of heart. The hard and inner part of the oak is called heart of oak.
JOHNSON. 269. -stood i' the level
Of a full-charg'd confederacy ;-] To stand ' in the level of a gun, is to stand in a line with its mouth, so as to be hit by the shot.
JOHNSON So, in our author's Lover's Complaint :
not a heart which in his level came, “ Could scape the hail of his all-hurting aim.”
Steevens. 302. The many to them 'longing,–] The many is the multitude. Thus, Coriolanus, speaking of the rabble, calls them : " the mutable rank-scented many."
STEEVENS. 307. And Danger serves among them.] Could onc. casily believe, that a writer who had, but immedi. ately before, sunk so low in his expression, should here rise again to a height so truly sublime ? where, by the noblest stretch of fancy, Danger is personalized as serving in the rebel army, and shaking the established government.