Page images
PDF
EPUB

Fri. (Advancing.]

Romeo!
Alack, alack! what blood is this, which stains
The stony entrance of this sepulchre ?-
What mean these masterless and gory swords
To lie discolour'd by this place of peace ? —

[Entering the Monument.
Romeo! 0, pale! - Who else? what! Paris too ?
And steep'd in blood ? — Ah! what an unkind hour
Is guilty of this lamentable chance !-
The lady stirs.

(JULIET wakes. Jul. O, comfortable friar! where is my lord ? I do remember well where I should be, And there I am. - Where is my Romeo ?

[Noise within. Fri. I hear some noise. — Lady, come from that

nest Of death, contagion, and unnatural sleep. A greater Power than we can contradict Hath thwarted our intents; come, come away : Thy husband in thy bosom there lies dead; And Paris too : come, I'll dispose of thee Among a sisterhood of holy nuns. Stay not to question, for the watch is coming , Come, go, good Juliet, — [Noise again.] I dare no longer stay.

[Erit. Jul. Go, get thee bence, for I will not away.-What’s here ? a cup, clos'd in my truc love's hanıl ? Poison, I see, hath been his timeless end. — O churl! drink all, and leave no friendly drop, To help me after ? — I will kiss thy lips ; Haply, some poison yet doth bang on them, To make me die with a restorative. [Kisses him Thy lips are warm !"

13 Shakespeare has been arraigned for making Romeo die be

1 Watch. [Within.] Lead, boy:- Which way? Jul. Yea, noise ? - then I'll be brief. — 0, happy

dagger! [Snatching Romeo's Dagger. This is thy sheath; [Stabs herself.) there rest, and

let me die." (Falls on Romeo, and dies

Enter Watch, with the Page of Paris.
Page. This is the place; there, where the torch

doth burn.
I Watch. The ground is bloody: Search about

the church-yard. Go, some of you, whoe'er you find, attach.

[Ereunt some.

fore Juliet awakes from her trance, and thus losing a happy opportunity of introducing an affecting scene between these noforTunate lovers. Schlegel remarks, that “the Poet seems to bave hit upon what was best. There is a measure of agitation, beyond which all that is superadded becomes torture, or glides off ineftectually from the already-saturated mind. In case of the cruel reunion of the lovers for an instant, Romeo's remorse for his overhasty self-murder, Juliet's despair over her deceitful hope, at first cherished, then annihilated, that she was at the goal of her wishes, inust have deviated into caricatures. Nobody surely doubts that Shakespeare was able to represent these with suitable force; but bere every thing soothing was welcome, in order that we may not be frightened out of the melancholy, to which we willingly resign ourselves, by too painful discords. Why should we heap still more upon accident, that is already so guilty ? Wherefore shall not the tortured Romeo quietly

Shake the yoke of inauspicious stars

Froin his world-wearied flesh ?' He bolds his beloved in his arms, and, dying, cbeers himself with a vision of everlasting marriage. She also secks death, in a kiss, upon his lips. These last moments must belong unparticipated to lenderness, ibat we may hold fast to the thought, that love lives, alihaigh tbe lovers perish."

14 All the old copies except the first quarto have rust instead of rest. Mr. Dyce surely is right in saying that, “ at such a moment, the thoughts of Juliet were not likely to wander away to the future rusting of the digger; she only wishes it, by resting in her bozom as in its sheall to give her instant death." .

Pitiful sight! here lies the county slain ;
And Juliet bleeding ; warm, and newly dead,
Who here hath lain these two days buried. —
Go, tell the prince, — run to the Capulets, –
Raise up the Montagues, — some others search :-

[Excunt other Watchmen.
We sec the ground whereon these woes do lie;
But the true ground of all these piteous woes
We cannot without circumstance descry.

Enter some of the Watch, with BALTHASAR. 2 Watch. Here's Romeo's man; we found him in

the church-yard. 1 Watch. Hold him in safety, till the prince come

hither.

Enter another Watchman, with Friar LAURENCE. 3 Watch. Here is a friar, that trembles, sighs, and

weeps : We took this mattock and this spade from him, As he was coming from this church-yard side.

1 Watch. A great suspicion: stay the friar too.

Enter the Prince and Attendants.
Prince. What misadventure is so early up,
That calls our person from our morning's rest ?

Enter CAPULET, Lady CAPULET, and Others.
Cap. What should it be, that they so shriek

abroad?
Lady C. The people in the street cry— Romeo,
Some — Juliet, and some – Paris; and all run
With open outcry toward our monument.

Prince. What fear is this, which startles in our

ears ? 15 I Watch. Sovereign, here lies the county Paris

slain ; And Romeo dead; and Juliet, dead before, Warm and rew-kill'd. Prince. Search, seek, and know how this foul

murder comes. 1 Watch. Here is a friar, and slaughter'd Romeo's

man,

With instruments upon them, fit to open
These dead men's tombs.
Cap. O, Heaven!—0, wife! look how our daugh-

ter bleeds!
This dagger hath mista'en, — for lo! his house
Is empty on the back of Montague,
And is mis-sheathed in my daughter's bosom.'

Lady C. O me! this sight of death is as a bell, That warns my old age to a sepulchre.

Enter MONTAGUE and Others. Prir.ce. Come, Montague ; for thou art early up, To see thy son and heir more early down.

Mon. Alas, my licge! my wife is dead to-night;"

H.

15 The old wopies have your instead of our. Jobnson made the change, which, though perhaps not necessary to the sense, helps it a good deal.

16 The words “for lo! his bouse is empty on the back of Mon. tague," are parenthetical. It appears that the dagger was an. ciently worn behind the back. So in Humor's Ordinarie : “ See you yon huge bum dagger at his back?And in The Longer Thou Livest the More Fool Thou Art, 1570 :

“Thou must wear thy sword by thy side,

And thy dagger bandsumly at thy backe." 17 After this line the quarto of 1597 adds: “And young Ben volio is deceased too."

Grief of my son's exile hath stopp'd her breath : What further woe conspires against mine age ?

Prince. Look, and thou shalt see. Mon. O, thou untaught! what manners is in this, To press before thy father to a grave ?

Prince. Seal up the mouth of outcry for a while, "Till we can clear these ambiguities, And know their spring, their head, their true descent ; And then will I be general of your woes, And lead you even to death. Meantime forbear, And let mischance be slave to patience. Bring forth the parties of suspicion.

Fri. I am the greatest, able to do least, Yet most suspected, as the time and place Doth make against me, of this direful murder ; And here I stand, both to impeach and purge Myself condemned, and myself excus'd. Prince. Then say at once what thou dost know

in this. Fri. I will be brief, for my short date of breath Is not so long as is a tedious tale. Romeo, there dead, was husband to that Juliet ; And she, there dead, that Romeo's faithful wife : I married them; and their stolen marriage-day Was Tybalt's dooms-day, whose untimely death Banish'd the new-made bridegroom from this city; For whom, and not for Tybalt, Juliet pin’d. You, to remove that siege of grief from her, Betroth’d, and would have married her perforce, To county Paris : then comes she to me,

18 The old copies have outrage instead of outery. It is DUI easy to see what business outrage can bave in sucb a place The change is taken from Mr. Collier's second folio. It is sup ported by the preceding passage, -“ All run with open outcry loward our monument."

« PreviousContinue »