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SCENE I.Navarre. A Park, with a Palace in it. Enter the King, BIRON, LONGAVILLE, and DUMAIN.
Long. I am resolv'd : 'tis but a three years' fast
Dum. My loving lord, Dumain is mortified ;
To love, to wealth, to pomp, 1 pipe and die ;
Biron. I can but say their protestation over,
King. Your oath is past to pass away from these.
Biron. Let me say no, iny liege, an if you please ;
Long. You swore to that, Biron, and to the rest.
Biron. By yea and nay, sir, then I swore in jest.. What is the end of study ? let me know.
King. Why, that to know, which else we should not know. Biron. Things hid and barr’d, you mean, from common
Biron. Come on then, I will swear to study so,
When I to feast expressly am forbid;
When mistresses from common sense are hid:
King. These be the stops that hinder study quite,
prosecute the same studies with me.
Biron. Whý, all delights are vain ; but that most vain, Which, with pain purchas’d, doth inherit pain : As, painfully to pore upon a book,
To seek the light of truth ; while truth the while
Light, seeking light, doth light of light beguile :
By fixing it upon a fairer eye ;
And give him light that was it blinded by.
That will not be deep-search'd with saucy looks; Small have continual plodders ever won,
Save base authority from other's books. These earthly godfathers of heaven's lights,
That give a name to every fixed star, Have no more profit of their shining nights,
Than those that walk, and wot not what they are. Too much to know, is, to know nought but fame ; And every godfather can give a name.s
King. How well he's read, to reason against reading!
That bites the first-born infants of the spring.
Before the birds have any cause to sing ?
 Falsely is here, and in many other places, the same as dishonestly or treacherously. The whole sense of this jingling declamation is only this, that a man by too close study may read himself blind. JOHNSON.
 The consequence, says Biron, of too much knowledge, is not any real solution of doubts, but mere empty reputation. That is, too much knonledge gives only fame, a name which every godfather can give likewise. JOHNSON.
 So sneaping winds in The Winter's Tale. To sneap is to check, to rebuke. Thus also, Falstatt, “I will not undergo this sneap, without reply." STEEVENS. 11
Than wish a snow in May's new-fangled shows;
King. Well, sit you out: go home, Biron ; adieu !
Biron. No, my good lord ; I've sworn to stay with you. And, though I have for barbarism spoke more,
Than for that angel knowledge you can say,
And 'bide the penance of each three year's day.
King. How well this yielding rescues thee from shame?
Biron. [Reads.] Item, that no woman shall come within a mile of my court.-And hath this been proclaim'd ?
Long. Four days ago.
Biron. Let's see the penalty.-- [Reads.] On pain of losing her tongue.--Who devis'd this?
Long. Marry, that did I.
[Reads.] Item. If any man be seen to talk with a woman within the term of three years, he shall endre such public shame as the rest of the court can possibly devise. -This article, my liege, yourself must break;
For, well you know, here comes in embassy
A maid of grace, and complete majesty,-
To her decrepit, sick, and bed-rid father : Therefore this article is made in vain,
Or vainly comes the admired princess hither. King. What say you, lords ? why, this was quite forgot Biron. So study evermore is overshot ; While it doth study to have what it would, It doth forget to do the thing it should : And when it hath the thing it hunteth most, 'Tis won, as towns with fire ; so won, so lost.
King. We must, of force, dispense with this decree; She must lie here on mere necessity.
 By shows the poet means Maygames, at which a snow would be very unwelcome and unexpected; it is only a periphrasis for May. T. WARTON.
(6) Lie here, means reside here, in the same sense as an ambassador is said to lit lieger. REED.
Biron. Necessity will make us all forsworn
Three thousand times within this three years' space : For every man with his affects is born ;
Not by might master'd, but by special grace: If I break faith, this word shall speak for me, I am forsworn on mere necessity. So to the laws at large I write my name : [Subscribes,
And he that breaks them in the least degree, Stands in attainder of eternal shame :
Suggestions are to others, as to me ;
With a refined traveller of Spain ;
That hath a mint of phrases in his brain :
Doth ravish, like enchanting harmony;
Have chose as umpire of their mutiny :'
For interim to our studies, shall relate,
Biron. Armado a most illustrious wight,
 Biron, amidst his extravagancies, speaks with great justness against the folly of vows. They are made without sufficient regard to the variations of life, and are therefore broken by some unforeseen necessity. They proceed commonly from a presumptuous confidence, and a false estimate of human power. JOHNSON.
 Suggestions--Temptations. JOHNSON.
 This passage, I believe, means no more than that Don Armado was a man nicely versed in ceremonial distinctions, one who could distinguish in the most delicate questions of honour the exact boundaries of right and wrong. Compliment, in Shakespeare's time, did not signify, at least, did not only signify verbal civility, or phrases of courtesy, but, according to its original meaning, the trappings, or ornamental appendages of a character, in the same manner and on the same principles of speech with accomplishment. Compliment is, as Armado well expresses it, the varnish of a complete man. JOHNSON.
 i. 7. I will make a minstrel of him, whose occupation was to relate fabulous stories. DOUCE.
 i. e. (says an intelligent writer in the Edinburgh Magazine,) words newly coined, new from the forge. Fire new, new off the irons, and the Scottish express sion bren-new bave all the same origin.' STEVENS.