« PreviousContinue »
SCENE I-On a Ship at sea: a storm, with thunder and lightning.
Enter a Ship-Master and a Boatswain.
Boats. Here, master: what cheer? Mast. Good, speak to the mariners: fall to't yarely, or we run ourselves aground: bestir, bestir. [Exit.
Enter Mariners. Boats. Heigh, my hearts! cheerly, cheerly, my hearts! yare, yare! Take in the top-sail. Tend to the master's whistle.—Blow, till thou burst thy wind, if room enough!'
Enter ALONSO, SEBASTIAN, ANTONIO, FERDINAND, GONZALO, and others.
Alon. Good boatswain, have care. Where's the master?
Play the men.
Boats. I pray now, keep below.
Ant. Where is the master, boatswain? Boats. Do you not hear him? You mar our labour: keep your cabins: you do assist the storm. Gon. Nay, good, be patient. Boats. When the sea is. Hence! What care these roarers for the name of king? To cabin: silence! trouble us not.
1. The earliest printed copy known of "THE TEMPEST" is that in the Folio published by Shakespeare's fellow-actors, Heminge and Condell, in 1623, seven years after the poet's death. The first performance of this play is believed to have taken place on "Hallowmas Night" (1st November), 1611. This gives confirmation to the internal evidence of the style-mature in beauty and rich fancy -that this play was one of the lastwritten productions of its author. The source of the plot was supposed to have been derived from an Italian novel, translated into English in 1588, and since thought to be traced to a German play, called "The Beautiful Sidea;" while some of the circumstances recorded in the life of Gian Galeazzo Visconti, Duke of Milan, a patron of Petrarch, the founder of Milan Cathedral, and a man much addicted to books and studious
Ant. Hang, cur, hang! you rascally, insolent noise-maker, we are less afraid to be drowned than thou art.
Gon. I'll warrant him for drowning; though the ship were no stronger than a nutshell, and as leaky as an unstanched wound.
Boats. Lay her a-hold, a-hold! set her two courses: off to sea again; lay her off.
Re-enter Mariners, wet. Mariners. All lost! to prayers, to prayers! all [Exeunt.
7. For drowning. "For" was often used for "from." 8. Twa courses. These " courses are two of the three largest and lowest sails; and to "lay her a-hold" is to bring the ship to lie as near the wind as she can.
Act 1. Scene I.
Boats. What, must our mouths be cold? Gon. The king and prince at prayers! let's assist them,
For our case is as theirs.
SCENE II.-The Island; before the cell of PROSPERO.
Enter PROSPERO and MIRANDA.
Mir. If by your art, my dearest father, you have Put the wild waters in this roar, allay them. The sky, it seems, would pour down stinking pitch, But that the sea, mounting to the welkin's cheek,11 Dashes the fire out. Oh, I have suffer'd With those that I saw suffer! a brave vessel, Who had, no doubt, some noble creatures in her, Dash'd all to pieces. Oh, the cry did knock Against my very heart! Poor souls! they perish'd. Had I been any god of power, I would Have sunk the sea within the earth, or ere It should the good ship so have swallow'd, and The fraughting 12 souls within her.
11. Welkin's cheek. "Welkin" (Saxon, pealcan, to roll; or pelcen, clouds) is an old word for the region of air; and Shakespeare has "cheeks of heaven," "cheeks o' the air," in other passages, for poetical allusion to the sky.
12. Fraughting. An old form of freighting. The word is here used to express those who form the freight of the vessel, and thronged or filled her.
13. More better. A double comparative was formerly in use, and frequent instances are found in Shakespeare.
14. Betid. Betided, befallen, happened.
The very minute bids thee ope thine ear;
I do not think thou canst, for then thou wast not
Mir. Certainly, sir, I can. Pros. By what? by any other house or person? Of anything the image, tell me, that Hath kept with thy remembrance. Mir. And rather like a dream, than an assurance That my remembrance warrants. Had I not Four or five women once that tended me ?
'Tis far off,