« PreviousContinue »
ACT ICSCENE I.
Rowe altered when’ to who, which has been followed "SALARISO and SALAN10"-There is much con
by the modern editors.”—COLLIER. fusion in the early editions which it is not now easy to " If they should speak, would almost damn those ears, rectify, between the names of these characters and the Which, hearing them, would call their brothers fools." speeches assigned to them, as designated by Sal., That is, (says Theobald,) Some people are thought Salan., Sol., Salar.; and the names themselves are
wise while they keep silence, who, when they open variously spelled. The text here differs from that of
their mouths, are such stupid praters that the hearers some of the modern editions in following the arrange- cannot help calling them fools, and so incur the judgment of the quartos, which receives some confirmation
ment denounced in the gospel against him who " says by its giving a larger and more lively share of the dia to his brother, Thou fool." logue to Salarino, who had professed his wish to make Antonio merry. This discrimination of character, even
“ For this FOOL-GUDGEON"-An expressive compound, in subordinate parts, slight as it is, is in Shakespeare's
which Malone (followed in many editions) altered to inanner, and is lost by the more equal alternation of the
fool's-gudgeon, against all the early copies. dialogue given by Stevens, and retained by Collier. "—for this GEAR—"i. e.“ Matter, subject, or business “ There, there your ARGOSIES Argosies” were
in general; often applied to dress, Saxon.”—Nares's large merchant vessels: the word is said by Stevens to
Glossary." he corrupted from Ragosies, or, ships of Ragusa, distin
Modern use has narrowed down the word to meanguished in their day for their size and value ; but Douce
ing harness or other fixings (to use an Americanism) derives it from the classical ship Argo, which is more
of man, or beast, or machinery; but, in older English, it probable, from argis being the word for ship in the
was used to express any matter in hand, as Launcelot Latin of the lower empire.
in this play says, “Fortune is a good wench for this
gear," i. e. for this affair, or this occasion. * And see my wealthy Andrew Dock'd in sand”Andrew" is the ship's name, and was probably a com
“ Is that any thing now ?"-All the early editions mon one for Italian vessels, in honour of the great admi
have, “ It is that any thing now,” which words Collier ral, Andrew Doria. For “dock'd in sand" all the old
retains, with an altered punctuation, thus, “ It is that: editions print " docks in sand;" and Collier proposes to
any thing now;" and explains thus: “ Antonio's obserread, “ my wealthy Andrew's decks in sand."
vation, It is that,' is addressed to Gratiano, concurring
in his remark just before he made his exit; and then " Vailing her high top"— To "vail” means to bow, to Antonio's bad spirits return upon him, and he adds, as londer, to cast down, as in Hamlet, “ vailed lids." if weary of Gratiano's talk, -any thing now.' This
naturally leads to Bassanio's criticism upon Gratiano." “_Now, by two-headed Janus, Nature hath fram'd strange fellows in her time."
But on looking at the original quarto, it will be seen that
there are marks of a misprint, thus, “ An. It is that any "By 'two-headed Janus' is meant those antique bifrontine heads, which generally represent a young and
thing now," for, as elsewhere, “ Ant. Is that any thing
now?" and this last reading suits the context. smiling face, together with an old and wrinkled one; being of Pan and Bacchus, of Saturn and Apollo, etc.
“ And I am PREST"_i. e. Ready: it is used in this These are not uncommon in collections of antiques, and sense by Chaucer, Spenser, Fox, and others: from the in the books of the antiquaries, as Montfaucon, Span
French prêt, anciently spelled preste. heim, etc."—WARBURTON. "—WHEN I am very sure"_“So all the old copies.
SCENE II. This reading is in Shakespeare's manner,
who often left “—he hath neither Latin, French, nor Italian"the nominative case of the verb to be understood. “A satire," says Warburton," on the ignorance of the
young English travellers in our author's time.” Knight concede the general immorality of any such return for says, " Authors are not much in the habit of satirizing the use of money, so far as private conscience is conthemselves; and yet, according to Farmer and his school, cerned, and is content to treat the subject merely as Shakespeare knew neither Latin, French, nor Italian.' permitted by positive law. In old English, use, usance, “ What think you of the Scottish lord, his neigh
and usury, all alike meant interest for the use of bour”—“ Portia's" reply could not be palatable to King money. Bacon so employs the words. After the legal James, and the Scotch who came to England on his ac
rate was established, usury gradually acquired its pres cession: therefore, in the folio,(1623,) other is substituted
ent distinct meaning, first in the courts and then in for “Scottish ;' whereas the quartos, which were printed
common language. The popular argument in Lord more than two years before James I. came to the throne,
Bacon's time, was, as we find it stated by Meares, that preserve the original reading."-COLLIER.
“it is against nature for money to beget money," which is what the Poet alludes to in his phrase of a breed of
barren metal,” etc. SCENE III.
Aristotle had long the credit, if
such it be, of inventing this argument, but his later “ — SQUANDERED abroad”—In a letter in Woodfall's commentators have shown that it does not belong to " Theatrical Repertory," 1801, it is stated that “Macklin,
him. mistakenly, spoke the word with a tone of reprobation, “—the ripe wants of my friend”—“ Ripe wants are implying that Antonio had, as we say of prodigals, unthriftly squandered his wealth.” The meaning is simply, delay. Perhaps we might read-rife wants, wants that
wants come to a heighi, wants that can have no longer scattered; of which we find an example in “ Howell's
come thick upon him."-Johnsos. Letters:"-" The Jews, once an elect people, but now grown contemptible, and strangely squandered up and
-all the EANLINGS"-i. e. Lambs just dropped, down the world." In Dryden's “Annus Mirabilis," or ean'd, now ordinarily spelled yeanlings, and yean. we have the same expression applied to ships :
“ — PILL'D me certain wands”—This is usually printed They drive, they squander, the huge Belgian fleet.
pecld, but, with Knight, we retain the old orthography, “What news on the Rialto ?”—The Rialto spoken
because it has been retained in the translation of the of throughont this play is, in all probability, not the
Bible now in use, as it was in the older ones, in the bridge to which belong our present associations with the
passage of Genesis to which Shylock alludes. The bridge was built in 1591.
“- shall we be BeHolding to you”—Generally printed Knight says—"The Rialto of ancient commerce is an according to modern use, “beholden;" but in the age island,
, -one of the largest of those on which Venice is of Elizabeth the active was frequently used for the pas built. Its name is derived from riva alta, -high shore, sive participle, and as all the old editions so print it, it and its being larger, and somewhat more elevated than was doubtless thus written, and should not be altered the others, accounts for its being the first inhabited. unless we choose to obliterate all the obsolete forms of The most ancient church of the city is there; and there speech from an author's page. were erected the buildings for the magistracy and commerce of the infant settlement. The arcades used for
“ — Spet on me"- This is generally modernized into these purposes were burned down in the great fire of
spit, or spate, but is here retained as it is printed in 1513, and rebuilt on the same spot in 1555,
as they now
every old edition ; because it is the ancient preterite, stand. Rialto Island is situated at the bend of the
(see®“ Pegge's Anecdotes,") which we ought not to Grand Canal, by which it is bounded on two sides,
change if we wish to retain the language in which the
Poet wrote. while the Rio delle Beccarie and another small canal bound it on the other two. There is a vegetable mar
“ A breed for barren metal”—The folio reads, as it ket there daily; and, though the great squares by St. is more generally quoted, “ of barren metal." Mark's are now the places where merchants most do congregate,' the old rendezvous is still so thronged, and
'— FEARFUL guard”-A guard that is the cause of
fear, because not to be trusted. Fearful was anciently has yet so much the character of a ‘mart,' as to justify now, as formerly, the question, “What news on the
often used for exciting fear, and is not yet quite obso
lete. To fear is used in the next scene for to fright. Rialto ?!” “ He lends out money gratis, and brings down
ACT II.-SCENE I. The rate of usance here with us in Venice." “It is almost incredyble what gaine the Venetians
“ – the Prince of Morocco"_" The stage-direction in receive by the usurie of the Jewes, both privately and
the folios and quartos is, •Enter Morochus a tawnie in common. For in everie citie the Jewes kepe open
Moore, all in white, and three or four followers ac. shops of usurie, taking gaiges of ordinarie for xv in the
cordingly,' etc. This is curious, as it shows the man
ner in which Moors were usually dressed on the stage hundred by the yere; and if, at the yere's end, the gaige be not redeemed, it is forfeite, or at least dooen away
in Shakespeare's time. Doubtless, Othello was all to a great disadvantage, by reason whereof the Jewes
white,' unless, indeed, he wore the military uniform of
the Venetian state."-COLLIER. are out of measure wealthie in those parts.”—Thomas's History of Italy," 1561.
“ And let us make incision for your love, -- once UPON THE HIP”—Thus, in OTHELLO:
To prove whose blood is reddest, his, or mine."
“Red blood is a traditionary sign of courage., Mac I'll have our Michael Cassio on the hip. The expression is taken from the terms of wrestling.
beth calls one of his frighted soldiers a' lily-livered
boy:' again, in this play, cowards are said to have livers " – and my well-won thrift,
as white as milk; and an effeminate and timorous man Which he calls interest."
is termed a milksop."— Illust. Shak. In order to understand this, and to enter into the
" It was customary in the East for lovers to testify the feeling of the play, it must be borne in mind that the
violence of their passion by cutting themselves in the moral distinction between interest, as allowed by law,
sight of their mistresses; and the fashion seems to and usury, or excess extorted beyond the legal rates,
have been considered as a mark of gallantry in Shake was not then so distinctly marked as at present, and was
speare's time, when young men rather a distinction in the law than in popular feeling or
their arms with daggers, and, mingling the blood with language. The old moral and religious objection was
wine, drank it off to the healths of their mistresses.”—
SINGER. to any interest or payment for the use of money at all. This continued for a long time, and is not yet extinct. “And hedg'd me by his wir”_"Wit” is here used That acute and enlightened lawyer, Pothier, in the in its ancient sense of mental power in general. To wite, middle of the last century, more than once appears to from the Anglo-Saxon witan, is, to know.
** I would OUT-STARE the sternest eyes that look” "— being more than SAND-BLIND”-i. e. “ Having an This reading is that of Roberts's quarto, and sustained imperfect sight, as if there was sand in the eye. Gravelby the sense, and by the antithesis of the next line, blind, a coinage of Launcelot’s, is the exaggeration of * out-brave." The other quarto, and the folio, have sand-blind. Pur-blind, or pore-blind, if we may judge o're-stare-a word not known, and giving no clear sense, from a sentence of Latimer's, is something less than though preferred in some late editions.
sand-blind :-They be pur-blind and sand-blind.'". " - beaten by his page”—This is Theobald's happy
KNIGHT. emendation; adopted in all editions since his time. The " — which is the way to master Jew's"_"It does not old copies have • beaten by his rage.” Lichas was the appear that the Jew (hardly used everywhere) had servant of Hercules.
more need of patience in Venice than in other states.
The same traditional reports against them exist there as SCENE II.
elsewhere, testifying to the popular hatred and preju“ Enter LAUNCELOT GOBBO”—The old copies read,
dice: but they were too valuable a part of a commer“ Enter the Clown alone;" and throughout the play
cial population not to be more or less considered and Launcelot Gobbo is called the Clown at most of his en
taken care of. An island was appropriated to them; trances, or erits.
but they long ago overflowed into other parts of the
city. Many who have grown extremely rich by money, “ LAUNCELOT Gobbo'_“My notion of Launcelot, lending, have now fine palaces in various quarters; and as I have seen him, has not been reflected from the
of these, some are among the most respectable and en. stage. • The patch is kind enough;' yet he is amazingly | lightened of the citizens. The Jews who people their wrapped up in self, and his soliloquies are intense on that quarter are such as are unable to rise out of it. Its darling subject. An obtrusive feature in his character, buildings are ancient and lofty, but ugly and sordid. is the conceit in his skull that he is better than he should "Our synagogue' is, of course, there. It is situated on be. Having been called by one who did not see him, the canal · which leads to Mestre. There are houses * master,' and young gentleman,' he insists, over and old enough to have been Shylock's, with balconies over again, on his being 'young master Launcelot,' and from which Jessica might have talked; and ground at last styles himself “the young gentleman.' All this, enough beneath, between the house and the water, for like every thing he says, is a mixture of vanity and her lover to stand, hidden in the shadow, or a 'pentdrollery; on the latter he stakes his fame as å wit. house.' Hence, too, her gondola might at once start Nature never formed a more egregious coxcomb; he is for the main land, without having to traverse any part Lord Foppington in low life, as far as his imbecility can of the city."-Knight. reach. In the same strain he talks of his “manly spirit,' and of the Jewis having done him wrong;' as if he and
“ By God's SONTIES"_" Sonties' is a corruption of his master were on an equality. No doubt his solace as
sanctities,” says Collier. It is more probably a corrup& servant was, that he must, sooner or later, owing to his
tion of sauntes, or saints. intrinsic merit, come to excellent fortune. He spells his “ Your worship's friend, and Launcelot”—The same fate on his palm ; where, though neither coronet nor form of expression occurs in Love's Labour Lostmastership offers itself to his imagination, there is some Your servant, and Costard." It would seem, from the thing of equal value to the young animal ;-—'eleven wid. context, that the old man's name was Launcelot. “I ows, and nine maids, is a simple coming-in for one man.' beseech you, talk you of young master Launcelot," His jokes are generally failures; but, coming from him, says the clown, when the old man has named himself. they are laughable. When suddenly reproached with his conduct towards the Moorish woman, his answer is
· Dobbin, iny PHILL-HORSE"- Phill-horse, or fill. "It is much that the Moor should be more than reason;
horse, is the shaft-horse; the horse that goes between
the shafts, or fills : in more modern use, the thill-horse. bat if she be less than an honest woman, she is, indeed, more than I took her for.' This elaborate nonsense, this “ I have here a dish of doves"-Ch. A. Brown has grasp at a pun without catching it, uttered in confusion, expressed his decided conviction, that some of the and in eagerness to shuttle ont of the accusation, is as dramas of Shakespeare exhibit the most striking proofs natural as it is ridiculous. It gives occasion to Lorenzo's that our Poet had visited Italy. The passage before us observing-How every fool can play upon the word !' is cited by Mr. Brown as one of these proofs :—“Where which, together with what follows, may be mistaken did he obtain his numerous graphic touches of national for a self-condemnation, made at hazard, on the part of manners ? where did he learn of an old villager's coming Shakespeare. By no means: the difficulty is to play into the city with 'a dish of doves' as a present to his well upon a word; besides, as Launcelot then and after son's master ? A present thus given, and in our days wards proves, the poverty of a jest may be enriched in and of doves, is not uncommon in Italy. I myself a fool's mouth, owing to the complacency with which have partaken there, with due relish, in memory of he deals it out; and because there are few things which poor old Gobbo, of a dish of doves, presented by the provoke laughter more than feebleness in a great attempt father of a servant.”-Shak. Autobiog. Poems. at a small matter."-C. A. Brown, Shak. Autobiog. P.
“ More GUARDED"-i. e. More laced, or fringed; the “ – Scorn running with thy HEELS."-Stevens sug- || gold-livery binding being, as Malone explains the donagests the following marvellons emendation-Do not run: tion, the guards of the cloth. scorn running; uithe thy heels, i, e. connect them with a tilhe, (a band made of osiers,) as the legs of cattle are
" Well; if any man in Italy have a fairer table, hampered in some countries. But, in fact,
which doth offer to swear upon a book. I shall have with heels” was a figurative phrase for thorough con good fortune." tempt. It is found also in Much ADO ABOUT Nothing, The best explanation of this passage is given by Mr. as well as in other books of the age. It is here humor Tyrwhitt :-" Launcelot, applauding himself for his sucously applied to the running away.
cess with Bassanio, and looking into the palm of his " — away!' says the fiend; "for the heavens,'”
hand, (which, by fortune-tellers, is called the table,) etc. Some of the editors think that the line needs cor
breaks out into the following reflection :- Well, if any rection, because it is not likely that the Poet would make
man in Italy have a fairer table, which doth offer to the devil conjure Launcelot for heaven's sake. Singer
swear upon a book I shall have good fortune : that is, observes, with better taste, that,
a table which doth not only promise, but offers to swear
upon a book that I shall have good fortune.” make the tienda conjure a Launcelot iedom a thing for a Go to; here's a simple LINE OF LIFE!" –“ Palmistry, "heaven's sake,' is a specimen of that “acute nonsense' or chiromancy, had once its learned professors as well which Barrow makes one of the species of wit, and as astrology. The printing-press consigned the delusion which Shakespeare was sometimes very fond of." to the gypsies. Chiromancy and physiognomy were once
kindred sciences. The one has passed away among “ Will be worth a Jewess' eye"-" The play upod other credulities belonging to ages which we call igno this word alludes to the common proverbial expression. rant and superstitious. The other, although fashionable ' worth a Jew's eye.' That worth was the price wineb half a century ago, is professed by none, but, more or the persecuted Jews paid to avoid mutilation and death. less, has its influence upon all. In the Pictorial edition When the rapacious King John extorted an enormous there is a woodcut, copied from a book with which sum from the Jew of Bristol by drawing his teeth, the Shakespeare must have been familiar:-Briefe intro threat of putting out an eye would have the like ettert ductions, both natural, pleasaunte, and also delectable, upon other Jews. The former prevalence of the saving into the Art of Chiromancy, or manuel divination, and is proved from the fact that we still retain it, although Phisiognomy: with circumstances upon the faces of the its meaning is now little known."-KNIGHT. Signes. Asso certain Canons or Rules upon Diseases and Sicknesses, &c. Written in ye Latin tongue by
SCENE VI. Jhon Indagine, Prieste, and now lately translated into
“ How like a YOUNKER"-So all the old copies. It is Englishe, by Fabian Withers. For Richard Jugge, 1558.'
the same word as younger and youngling. Launcelot, as well as his betters, were diligent students
Johnson says— Gray (dropping the allusion to the of the mysteries interpreted by Jhon Indagine, Prieste;' and a simple or complex line of life were indications prodigal) caught from this passage the imagery of the
following ;' that made even some of the wise exult or tremble."KNIGHT.
Fair laughs the morn, and soft the zephyr blows,
While proudly riding o'er the azure realm " — sad ostent”-i. e. Ostentation; not, as now, con
In gallant trim the gilded vessel goes;
Youth on the prow, and pleasure at the helm; fined to the show of vanity, but for any external show,
Regardless of the sweeping whirlwind's sway, as here, of grief or gravity.
Thut, hush'd in grim repose, expects his evening prey. SCENE III.
“ The Scarfed bark”—The vessel that is gay with “ If a Christian Do not play the knave, and get thee, I am much deceived”—The three original authorities “- a Gentile, and no Jero”—“ A jest arising from agree in this reading, and the meaning is clearly, “ if a the ambiguity of " Gentile,' which signifies both a heaChristian do not play the knave and obtain thee," etc.
then and one well born."'-Jonsson. Instead of the fellow's shrewd gness at Jessica's inclina So, at the conclusion of the first part of “ Jeronimo," tions, the editors have generally preferred the later read (1605,)— ing of did for “do,” intimating a doubt as to her birth,
-80, good night, kind gentles, which the poor joke it conveys has made the popular
For I hope there's never a Jew among you all. reading.
“ Gilded TOMBS do worms infold”—The reading, in “ Enter Shylock and LAUNCELOT."
all the old copies, is timber for “ tombs,” which injures
the verse and the grammar. Johnson's suggestion of The old stage-direction is, “Enter Jew and his man,
“ tombs" is no doubt correct. Rowe inserted wood; that was the Clowne."
but no compositor could misprint “ timber” for wood, “ – on BLACK MONDAY last"-Stowe, the Chronicler,
whereas, as Johnson remarks, it would be easy to mis thus describes the origin of this name:-“ Black-Monday | print timber for “ tombs,” then spelled tombes. is Easter-Monday, and was so called on this occasion : in the 34th of Edward III., (1360,) the 14th of April,
SCENE VIII. and the morrow after Easter-dlay, King Edward, with
“ I REASON'D"-i. e. Conversed or talked. Thus, in his host, lay before the city of Paris : which day was full dark of mist and hail, and so bitter cold, that many
Beaumont and Fletcher:
There is no end of women's reasoning. men died on their horses' backs with the cold. Wherefore unto this day it hath been called Black-Monday.” “Slubber not business"-Shakespeare uses “ slab
ber" in two senses, somewhat connected; both of them “ And the vile sQueALING of the ury-neck'a fife", preserved in our modern use of the word slobber. Two out of the three original editions read thus. One
Here it means, “neglect not business," or,
“ do not do quarto has squalling.. In Shylock's mouth the former is
it carelessly." In Othello it means to soil, or darkenmore expressive of disgust.
to “slubber the gloss of your new fortunes." “ – the wry-neck'd Fife"-Commentators differ as to whether the fife" is here the instrument or the mu
SCENE IX. sician. Boswell has given a quotation from “ Barnaby
“ – that MANY may be meant Rich's Aphorisms,” (1618,) which to me seems decisive.
By the fool multitude," etc. "A fife is a wry-neckt musician, for he always looks away from his instrument.” But Knight still maintains
“The Prince of Arragon intends to say—By that that Shakespeare intended the instrument, principally folio first introduced a phraseology more agreeable to
many' may be meant the foolish multitude. The fourth from the circumstance that the passage is an imitation of Horace, in which the instrument is decidedly meant:
our ears at present-Of the fool multitude. But change, Prima nocte domum claude; neque in vias,
merely for the sake of elegance, is dangerous. Many Sub cantu querulæ despice tibiæ.-(Carm. lib. iii. 7.)
modes of speech were familiar in Shakespeare's age that
are now no longer used. I have met with many ex: Knight adds that—"Independent of the internal evi
amples of this kind of phraseology. So in Plutarch's dence derived from the imitation, the form of the old English flute—the fife being a small flute-justifies, we
* Life of Cæsar,' as translated by North, (1575,)—He
answered that these fair long-haired men made him not think, the epithet ‘wry-neck’d.' This flute was called
afraid, but the lean and whitely-faced fellows; meaning the flute à bec, the upper part or mouth-piece resem
that by Brutus and Cassius.' ” — Malone. bling the beak of a bird. And this form was as old as the Pan of antiquity."
“So begone : you are sped”—Capell misprints this But “ sife," for fifer, was undoubtedly the old phrase. line, “So farewell, sir, you are sped;" and from whence “ Wry-neck’d," as applied to the musician, is far more he derived the corruption it is difficult to say. Malone graphically descriptive, and therefore, more Shake and others interpolate sir after“ begone," although spearian; and I have no belief in any intended imitation there is no warrant for it in any of the oldest editions. of Horace, for the thought was equally obvious to both It first found its way into the second folio, and certainly poets
lessens the force of the line. •
** Patiently to bear my WROTH"—Stevens says that many for which the editors of SHAKESPEARE are an*wroth” is here put for ruth, or misfortune; and it is thus swerable." spelied in Chapman’s “Homer," and other old poets.
- whose hearts are all as false “ Enter a MesseNGER"-" This is the stage-direction
As stairs of sand,” etc. in all the old copies, for which modern editors have sub The comparison refers to the difficult ascent of any stituted · Enter a Servant.' It is clear that he was not sandy elevation giving way under the feet; and like a mere servant, not only from the language put into his
other transient colloquial comparisons, is not meant to mouth, but because, when he asks, 'Where is my lady?' be carried out in particulars. The old spelling of Portia replies, • Here; what would my lord?' The “ stairs" was staiers, as in the quartos, or stayers, as in messenger was a person of rank attending on Portia." the folio. Knight retains the folio spelling in his text, COLLIER.
as giving the meaning of “bulwarks of sand"
sumption of strength without reality. ACT III.-SCENE I.
“And these assume but valour's EXCREMENT," etc. " — KNAPPED ginger"-i. e. Snapped, or broke ginger. The last word is used, as in HAMLET, WINTER'S " - Thou torturest me, Tubal: it was my turquoise"
Tale, and the COMEDY OF ERRORS, in its derivative from excresco,
for “ The turquoise is a well-known precious stone, found
every thing growing or proin the veins of the mountains on the confines of Persia
ceeding from the body. to the east. In old times its value was much enhanced
“ Thus ornament is but the GUILED shore," etc. by the magic properties attributed to it in common with other precious stones, one of which was, that it faded
For guileful, the participle used adjectively, as was or brightened its hue as the health of the wearer in
frequent in the poetic language of Elizabeth's age. creased or grew less. This is alluded to by Ben Jonson
Thus we find, in OTHELLO, " delighted" beauty, for dein his . Sejanus:'
lightful beauty And true as turkise in my dear lord's ring.
Thy PALENESS moves me more than eloquence," etc. Look well or ill with him.
Many of the later editors, adopting Warburton's conOther virtues were also imputed to it, all of which were jecture, read, “ thy plainness ;" but the early editions either monitory or preservative to the wearer.
all read “paleness," and this epithet is considered as Nicols, in his translation of Anselm de Boot’s Lapidary,' peculiarly appropriate to lead, in the writers of the sixsays, this stone • is likewise said to take away all en teenth century. “Paleness like lead," and similar mity, and to reconcile man and wife.' This quality may phrases, may be found in Skelton and others. have moved Leah to present it to Shylock. It is evi The chief recommendation to the proposed change is dent that he valued it more for its imaginary virtues, or that silver has just been called "pale," and some other as a memorial of his wife, than for its pecuniary worth.” epithet seems now required. It is probably merely the STEVENS.
carelessness of rapid composition-such repetitions of “ - a wilderness of monkeys"-—'What a fine He
words being one of the most frequent blemishes in all
writings, which subsequent revisions generally remove. braism (says Hazlitt) is implied in this expression !"
Yet if, as Malone suggests, a strong emphasis is laid on SCENE II.
"thy," so as to contrast the paleness of load with that
of silver, no amendment will be wanted. But if an 16 – Beshrew your eyes,
amendment be required, I prefer Farmer's alterationThey have 0'ER-LOOK'D me."
leaving "paleness" to stand, and changing “pale and “O'er-look'd me" is here used in the sense of en
common drudge" to stale and common, as applied to chanted me, taken from the old popular notion of the
silver. influence of the looks of witches or fairies.' So, in the
“ In measure Rain thy joy '-It may be doubted MERRY Wives OF WINDSOR:
whether we ought to read“ rain," or rein; the old Vile worm, thou wast o'er-look'd even from thy birth. spelling (raine) having either meaning.
- Prove it
“And leave itself UNFURNISH'd"-i. e. “Unfurnished Let fortune go to hell for it,—not I.”
with a companion or fellow. In Fletcher's Lover's The meaning here is, “ If the worst I fear should hap-Progress, Alcidon says to Clarangé, on delivering Lidpen, and it should prove in the event that I, who am
ian's challenge, which Clarangé accepts :justly yours by the free donation I have made you of
you are a noble gentleman, myself, should yet not be yours in consequence of an
Will't please you bring a friend; we are two of us,
And pity, either of us should be unfurnish'd. unlucky choice, let fortune go to hell for robbing you of your just due, not I for violating my oath.”—HEATH.
The bint for this passage appears to have been taken
from Greene's • History of Faire Bellora ;' afterwards " — but 'tis to peize the time"-" To peize" is to published under the title of “A Paire of Turtle Doves :' poise, weigh, or balance; and, figuratively, to keep in. If Apelles had beene tasked to have drawne her counsuspense, or to delay. Marlowe uses the word in the terfeit, her two bright burning lampes would have so sense of weighed :
dazzled his quick-seeing sences, that quite dispairing to For from the earth to heaven is Cupid raised,
expresse with his cunning pensill so admirable a worke Where fancy is in equal balance peized.
of nature, he had been inforced to have staid his hand, "Fancy” here, as often in SHAKESPEARE, is synonymous
and left this earthly Venus unfinished.'. A preceding with love.
passage in Bassiano's speech might have been suggested
by the same novel: What are our curled and crisped “Reply, reply”—These words, which, in this edi
lockes, but snares and nets to catch and entangle the tion, as in those of Knight and that of Collier, are print
hearts of gazers,' etc.”—MALONE and STEVENS. ed as part of the song, were considered by Johnson to
— sum of NOTHING"-So the folio. Both quartos from Johnson's time, in most of the editions the line has read “sum of something;" which is the ordinary text. been suppressed. In all the old copies the passage is We agree with Mason, Knight and Collier, in preferring printed thus, in Italic type :
the reading of the folio, as it is Portia's intention in this How begot, how nourished. Replie, replie.
speech to undervalue herself in comparison with what The reply is then made; and, probably, by a second
she would wish to be for Bassanio's sake. voice. We agree with Knight, that “The mutilation "— and SalER10"-"A Messenger from Venice" is of the song, in the belief that the words were a stage added in the stage-direction of the quartos. Knight direction, is one of the most tasteless corruptions of the thinks this should be Salanio But in the scenes just