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Crowd to his presence, where their untaught love
I am come to know your pleasure. Ang. That you might know it, would much better please
me, Than to demand what 'tis. Your brother cannot live.
Ifab. Even so ? - Heaven keep your honour! [Retiringi
Ang. Yet may he live a while; and, it may be,
Isab. Under your sentence ?
Ifab. When, I beseech you ? that in his reprieve,
Ang. Ha! Fie these filthy vices! It were as good.
: 'tis all as easy
Ijab. 'I is set down fo in heaven, but not in earthos
Si. e. that hath killed a man. MALONE, 6 Their fawcy sweetness Dr. Warburton interprets, their fawcy indulgence of ikeir appetite. Perhaps it means nearly the same as what is afterwards cailed sweet uncleanness. MALONE,
Srectress, in the prefent instance has, I believe, the same sense as liskerifnnels. STEEVENS.
? Folley is the same with discreftly, illegally:. fo false, in the next line but onc, is illegal, illegitimale. JOHNSON.
In forbidden moulds. I suspect means not to be the right word, but I cannot find another. JOHNSON. I hould suppose that our author wrotes.
--in restrained mints, as the allusion may be still to coiring. Sir W. D'Avenant omits the puliage.
STEEVENS. 9 I would have it considered, whether the train of the discourse does not rather require Isabel to say :
How fay you
Ang. Say you fo? then I shall poze you quickly. Which had
rather, That the most juft law
Sir, believe this,
foul.2 Ang. I talk not of your soul ; Our compellid fins Stand
more for number than accompt.3 Ifab.
Please you to do'ts
Ang. Pleas'd you to do't at peril of your soul,
ras: . 'Tis to see down in earth, but not in heaven.. When she has said this, Tben, says Angelo,-1. fall poze you quickly. Would you, who, for the present purpose, declare your brother's crime to be less in the fight of heaven, than the law has made it; would you · commit that crime, light as it is, to save your brother's life ? To this the answers, not very plainly.in either reading, but more appofitely to that which I propose :
I bad rat ber give my body than my soul. JOHNSON, What you have itated is undoubtedly the divine law:- murder and for nication are both for bid by the canon of fcripture ;-but on eartb the latter offence is considered as less heinous than the former. MALONE,
,2 label, I believe,. uses the words, “ give my body,” in a different fenfe from that in which they had been mployed by Angelo. She means, I think, I. bad rather di-, tdan for fert my eternal bappiness by the prof.tution of " y perfor. MALONE.
She may mean-1 had rather give up my body to imprisonment, than my jital to ferditions. STEEVENS:
3 Actions to which we are compelled, however numerous, are not imputed to us by heaven as crimes. If you cannot save your brother but by the Joss of your chastity, it is not a voluntary but compelled fia, for which you cannot be accountable. MALONE. 4. The reasoning is thus : Angelo alks,, whether there might not be a.
Ijab. That I do beg his life, if it be fin,
Nay, but hear me:
Isab. Let me be ignorant, and in nothing good, But graciously to know I am no better.
Ang. Thus wisdom wishes to appear moft bright, When it doth tax itself: as these black masks Proclaim an enshield beauty 6 ten times louder
charity in fin to save tbis brother. Isabella answers, that if Angelo will fave bim, she will fake ber soul that it were cbarity, not fin. Angelo replies, that if Isabella would save bim at the bazard of ber soul, it would be not indeed no fin, but a fin to wbicb tbe charity would be equivalent.
JOHNSON 5 I think it thould be read,
And nothing of yours, answer,
And norking of your answer, means, and make no part of those finis for wbicb you shall be called to answer. STEEVENS. This passage would be clear, I think, if it were pointed thus :*
To bave it added to tbe faults of mine,
And norbing of your, answer. STEEVENS. So that the substantive answer may be understood to be joined in con ftruction with mine as well as your. The faults of mine answer are the faults wbich I am to answer for. TYRWHITT.
6 An enshield beauty is a shielded beauty, a beauty covered or protected as with a shield. STLIVENS.
as tbese black marks,
Proclaim an enshield beauty, &c. This should be written, en.fbell d, or in-fhelld, as it is in Coriolanus, Act IV. sc. vi:
" Thrufts forth his horns again into the world
“ That were in-pelled when Marcius stood for Rome." These Mosks muß mean, I think, the Masks of the audience; however improperly a compliment to them is put into the mouth of Angelo. As Shakspeare would hardly have been guilty of such an indecorum to flatter a common audience, I think this passage affords ground for supposing that the play was written to be acted at court. Some ftrokes of particular Hattery to the King I have already pointed out; and there are several
Than beauty could displayed. But mark me;
Ang. And his offence is so, as it appears Accountant to the law upon that pain.7
Ang. Admit no other way to save his life, fAs I subscribe not that, nor any other, But in the loss of question,) ? that you, his fifter,
Finding other general reflections, in the character of the Duke especially, which feem calculated for the royal ear. TYRWHITT.
I do not think so well of the conjecture in the latter part of this note, as I did some years ago ; and therefore I should wish to withdraw it. Not that I am inclined to adopt tňe idea of Mr. Ritson, as I see no ground for fuppofing that Isabella had any mofa in ber band. My notion at present is, that the phrase obese black mufas fignifies nothing more than black masks ; according to an old idiom of our language, by which the demonstrative pronoun is put for the prepositive article. See the Glossary 10 Chaucer, edit. 1775; This, Thise. Shakspeare seems to have used the same idiom not only in the passage quoted by Mr. Steevens from Romeo and Julierge but also in King Henry IV. Part I. Ac I. sc. iii :
-and, but for these vile guns, " He would himself have been a soldier." With respect to the former part of this note, though Mr. Ritfon has told us that " enshield is CERTAINLY put by contraction for en bielded," I have no objection to leaving: my conjecture in its place, till fome authority is produced for such an usage of enshield or enshielded. TYRWX1TT.
There are instances of a similar contraction or elision, in our author's plays. Thus, bloat for bloated, ballaft for ballafted, and raft for wafieds with many others. Ritson.
Sir William. D'Avenunë reads-as a black mask ; but I am afraid Mr.. Tyrwhitt is too well supported in his first supposition, by a passage at the: beginning of Romeo and Juliet :
« These happy masks that kifs fair ladies' brows,
SFELVENSK 7 Pain is here for penalty, pun: Oment. JOHN90N.
To subscribe means, to agree to. Milton uses the word in the fame: fense, STEEVENS. The loss of question I do not well understand, and should:rather read:
But in the toss of question. In the agitation, in the discusion of the question. To rojs an argument is a common phrase. JOHNSON,
Finding yourself defir'd of such a person,
Isab. As much for my poor brother, as myself ::
Then must your brother dies
Ang. Were not you then as cruel as the sentence
you have flander'd fo?
is Nothing akin to foul redemption.
Ang. You seem'd of late to make the law a tyrant;:
Ijab, This expression, I believe, means, but in idle fuppofition; or conversation. ibat tends to norbing, which may therefore, in our author's language, be: ca led the loss of question. STEEVENS. Question is used here, as in many other places, for conversation.
MALONE 3 The old editions read:.
Lall-building law: JOHNSON.. The emendation is Theobald's.. STEEVENS.. 3 Perhaps we should read:
Better it were, a bro!ber died for once,.&c. Jonson.. 4 So the word ignominy was formerly written. Thus, in Troilus and Crefida, Act V. sc. iii :
« Hence, brother lacquey!"ignomy and shame," &c. REID. The fecond folio- reads--ignominy; but whichfoever reading, we cake, die line will be inharmonious, if not defective. STEEVEN S.