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These three have robb'd me; and this demi-devil
I shall be pinch'd to death. Alon. Is not this Stephano, my drunken butler? SEB. He is drunk now: Where had he wine ? ALON. And Trinculo is reeling ripe: Where
should they Find this grand liquor that hath gilded them ??— How cam'ft thou in this pickle?
1 And Trinculo is ruling ripe: wbere jould they
Find this grand LIQUOR that hath gilded them??] Shakspeare, to be fure, wrote—ğrand 'LIXIR, alluding to the grand Elixir of the alchymists, which they pretend would restore youth and confer immortality. This, as they said, being a preparation of gold, they called Aurum potabile; which Shakspeare alluded to in the word gilded; as he does again in Antony and Cleopatra :
“ How much art thou unlike Mark Antony ?
“ With his tinct gilded thee.” But the joké here is to infinuate that, notwithstanding all the boasts of the chemists, fack was the only restorer of youth and bestower of immortality. So Ben Jonson, in his Every Man out of his Humour ;-" Canarie, the very Elixir and spirit of wine.” This seems to have been the cant name for fack, of which the English were, at that time, immoderately fond. Randolph, in his Jealous Lovers, speaking of it, fays,-“ A pottle of Elixir at the Pegasus, bravely caroused.” So, again in Fletcher's Monsieur Thomas, Act III:
“ Old reverend sack, which, for aught that I can read yet, “ Was that philosopher's itone the wise king Ptolemeus
« Did all his wonders by."The phrase too of being gilded, was a trite one on this occasion. Fletcher, in his Chances :" Duke. Is she not drunk too? Whore. A little gilded o'er, fir; old fack, old sack, boys!” WARBURTOX.
As the alchymist's Elixir was supposed to be a liquor, the old reading may ftand, and the allufion holds good without any alte fation. STEEVENS.
Trin. I have been in such a pickle, since I saw you last, that, I fear me, will never out of my bones : Í shall not fear fly-blowing. 8
Seb. Why, how now, Stephano?
[Pointing to CALIBAN. Pro. He is as disproportion'd in his manners, As in his shape :-Go, firrah, to my cell; Take with you your companions; as you look To have my pardon, trim it handsomely.
CAL. Ay, that I will; and I'll be wise hereafter, And seek for grace: What a thrice-double ass Was I, to take this drunkard for a god, And worship this dull fool? Pro.
Go to; away!
fly-blowing.) This pickle alludes to their plunge into the stinking pool; and pickling preserves meat from fly-blowing.
STEEVENS. 9 - - but a cramp.] i. e. I am all over a cramp. Prospero bad ordered Ariel to sporten up their finews with aged cramps. Touch me not alludes to the foreness occasioned by them. In his next speech Stephano confirms this meaning by a quibble on the word fore.
STEEVENS. 2 I should have been a sore one then.] The fame quibble occurs afterwards in the Second Part of K. Henry VI: “Mass, 'twill be fore law then, for he was thrust in the mouth with a spear, and 'tis not whole yet." Stephano also alludes to the fores about him.
STEEVENS. 3 This is as strange a thing as e'er I look'd on.] The old copy, disregarding metre, reads
“ This is a strange thing as e'er I look'd on." For the repetition of the conjunction-as, &c. I am answerable.
Alon. Hence, and bestow your luggage where
you found it.
Seb. Or stole it, rather.
Exeunt Cal. Sre. and Trin.
I'll deliver all;
E P i L 0 G U E.
SPOKEN BY PROSPERO.
charms are all o'erthrown,
3 With the help of your good bands.] By your applause, by clapping hands. JOHNSON.
Noise was supposed to dissolve a spell. So twice before in this play: 66 No tongue;
be filent." Again :
hush! be mute; “ Or else our spell is marr'd.” Again, in Macbeth, A& IV. sc. i:
“ Hear his speech, but say thou nought.” Again, ibid.
Liften, but speak not to't." STEVENS. 4 And my ending is despair,
Unlejs I be reliev'd by prayer;] This alludes to the old stories told of the despair of necromancers in their laft moments, and of the efficacy of the prayers of their friends for them. WARBURTON.
Which pierces so that it assaults
you from crimes would pardon'd be,
s It is observed of The Tempeft, that its plan is regular ; this the author of The Revisal thinks, what I think too, an accidental effect of the story, not intended or regarded by our author. But, whatever might be Shakspeare's intention in forming or adopting the plot, he has made it inftrumental to the production of many characters, diversified with boundless invention, and preserved with profound skill in nature, extensive knowledge of opinions, and accurate observation of life. In a single drama are here exhibited princes, courtiers, and sailors, allo speaking in their real characters. There is the agency of airy spirits, and of an earthly goblin. The operations of magick, the tumults of a storm, the adventures of a desert island, the native effufion of untaught affection, the punishment of guilt, and the final happiness of the pair for whom our passions and reason are equally interested.