Page images
PDF
EPUB

Even in the bosom of our adversaries.

King. Then this remains, that we divide our power. -
You, son John, and my cousin Westmoreland,
Towards York shall bend you with your dearest speed,
To meet Northumberland and the prelate Scroop,
Who, as we hear, are busily in arms :
Myself, and you, son Harry, - will towards Wales,
To fight with Glendower and the Earl of March.
Rebellion in this land shall lose his sway,
Meeting the check of such another day:
And since this business 2 so fair is done,
Let us not leave till all our own be won.

[Exeunt.

2 Business is a trisyllable here, as in various other instances.

CRITICAL NOTES.

ACT I., SCENE I.
Page 11.

Of prisoners, Hotspur took
Mordake the Earl of Fife and eldest son

To beaten Douglas. The article the, needful to the metre, is wanting in the old copies. Supplied by Pope.

P. 11. Faith, 'tis a conquest for a prince to boast of. — So Rann. Instead of Faith, 'tis, at the beginning of this speech, the old copies have In faith it is at the conclusion of the preceding speech.

ACT I., SCENE 2. P. 20. Farewell, thou latter Spring. The old copies have the instead of thou. Corrected by Pope.

P. 20. Falstaff, Bardolph, Peto, and Gadshill shall rob those men, &c. — Instead of Bardolph and Peto, the old copies have Harvey and Rossill, which were doubtless the names of the actors who performed those parts. Such substitutions of names are not uncommon in old editions of plays. Corrected by Theobald.

P. 21. Provide us all things necessary, and meet me to-night in Eastcheap. So Capell. The old copies read “meet me to-morrow night,which can hardly be right, since the Prince is here directing Pointz to provide the things necessary for the part they are to play in the robbery, such as visards, cases of buckram, &c.; and the time set for the robbery is “to-morrow morning, by four o'clock, early at Gads-hill.”

P. 22. By breaking through the foul and ugly mists

And vapours that did seem to strangle him. — The old text has “mists Of vapours.” Such an expression, I think, was not good English in Shakespeare's time; and we have repeated instances of & misprinted of. Dyce prints “mists Of vapour.

ACT I., SCENE 3.

P. 22. My blood hath been too cold and temperate,

Unapt to stir at these indignities,

As you have found me; for, accordingly, &c. - The old text reads "And you have found me.” The correction is Lettsom's.

P. 23. And that same greatness too which our own hands

Have holp to make so portly.
North.

My good lord,
King. Worcester, get thee gone, for I do see

Danger and disobedience in thine eye. — The old text lacks good in Northumberland's speech. The insertion has the joint sanction of Pope, Walker, and Collier's second folio.

P. 24. Came there a certain lord, neat, trimly dress’d,

Fresh as a bridegroom. — So Pope. The old copies read “neat and trimly dress’d.”

P. 24. I then, all smarting with my wounds being cold,

Out of my grief and my impatience
To be so pester'd with a popinjay,

Answer'd neglectingly, &c. So Capell. The old text transposes the second and third lines. The correction was proposed by Edwards and Johnson.

P. 24. He should, or he should not ; for't made me mad

To see him shine so brisk, &c. — The old text reads "for he made me mad.”

P. 26. Shall we buy treason ? and indent with fears?- Hanmer and Collier's second folio read “indent with foes,” and rightly, I suspect. It is indeed certain that fears was often put for things or persons feared; still I am apt to think that foes agrees better with the context here. Staunton prints feers, an old word for companion or mate. I cannot see what business such a word should have here. See foot-note 9.

P. 27. Art not ashamed? But, sirrah, from henceforth

Let me not hear you speak of Mortimer.— The old copies read “ Art thou not asham’d,” and lack from, thus totally defeating the rhythm of the line. Lettsom would strike out thou, and take henceforth as a trisyllable. But I think the Poet nowhere else uses it so. On the other hand, in the first speech of this scene we have I will from henceforth rather be myself.”

66

P. 28.

Was he not proclaim'd By Richard that is dead the next of blood ? — The old text has “ By Richard that dead is,". - a very awkward inversion. Walker's correction.

P. 30. And to your quick-conceiving discontent

I'll read you matter deep and dangerous. - So Walker. The old text has discontents; which would be in accordance with the usage of the time in addressing more than one person. But this is addressed to Hotspur only.

P. 30. If we fall in, good night, or sink or swim ! The old copies read “If he fall in.” Theobald proposed and Hanmer printed we. Heath, also, strongly approves that reading, as nothing precedes to which the pronoun he can refer.

P. 31. Why, what a wasp-stung and impatient fool

Art thou, to break into this woman's mood. — So the first quarto. The other old copies have waspe-tongue and waspe-tongu'd. The meaning of wasp-stung I take to be, “as fretful and snappish as if stung by wasps”; which aptly describes Hotspur's behaviour. Wasp-tongue or wasp-tongued would seem to mean that his speech is waspish, or as stinging and spiteful as a wasp ; which does not suit the occasion so well, though a good sense in itself.

ACT II., SCENE I.

P. 36. There is ne'er a king in Christendom could be better bit than, &c. So the folio. The quartos “ne'er a king christen could be,” &c.

P. 38. But with nobility and tranquillity, burgomasters and great

oneyers; such as can hold in, such as will strike sooner than speak, and speak sooner than drink, and drink sooner than

pray. — For tranquillity and great oneyers Collier's second folio substitutes sanguinity and “great ones yes, such as can,” &c. By tranquillity I have always understood persons of leisure, or “at their ease," as Capell explains it; and I do not see how sanguinity gives any clearer or better sense. “Great oneyers,” I take it, are simply what are sometimes called “big bugs”; — “a cant variation of great ones,” says Johnson. Perhaps I ought to add that Theobald substituted“ great moneyers”; Hanmer, “great owners”; and Capell, great mynheers.”

66

ACT II., SCENE 2.

P. 42. Pointz. 0, 'tis our setter : I know his voice.

Bard. What news?

Gads. Case ye, case ye; on with your visards, &c. — The old copies run the first two of these speeches together into one, thus: “O 'tis our Setter, I know his voyce: Bardolfe, what newes?” Here the prefix Bardolfe evidently got printed as a part of the speech. And in the third speech, instead of the prefix Gads., the old copies have Bar. The present arrangement and distribution of the speeches are Johnson's.

P. 44. Away, good Ned. Fat Falstaff sweats to death,
And lards the lean earth as he walks along. - So Capell.

The old text lacks Fat, which is needed both for the metre and for the antithesis with lean. In case of two or more successive words beginning with the same letters, one of them is very apt to drop out.

Act II., SCENE 3. P. 46. Of prisoners ransom'd, and of soldiers slain.— The old copies have “prisoners ransome.Capell proposed the correction ; and Walker points out many clear instances of final d and final e confounded.

P. 47. Thy spirit within thee hath been so at war,

And thou hast so bestirr'd thee in thy sleep, &c. — Instead of thou hast, the old copies have thus hath. The correction was proposed by Capell; and Walker says, “Read And thou hast,' &c." He seems not to have been aware of Capell's conjecture.

P. 48. Come, come, you paraquito, answer me

Directly to this question that I ask. — The old copies read “ Directly unto this question.” Hardly worth noting, perhaps.

« PreviousContinue »