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'Tis since the nuptial of Lucentio,
2 Cap. 'Tis more, 'tis more: his son is elder, sir ; His son is thirty. 1 Cap.
Will you tell me that?1 . His son was but a ward two years ago.
Rom. What lady's that, which doth enrich the hand Of yonder knight ?2
Serv. I know not, sir.
Rom. O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright! Her beauty hangs upon the cheek of night3 Like a rich jewel in an Ethiop's ear:4 Beauty too rich for use, for earth too dear! So shows a snowy dove trooping with crows, As yonder lady o'er her fellows shows.
1 Will you tell me &c.] This speech stands thus in the first copy:
Will you tell me that? it cannot be so:
Good youths, i' faith!-Oh, youth 's a jolly thing! There are many trifling variations in almost every speech of this play; but when they are of little consequence I have foreborne to encumber the page by the insertion of them. The last, however, of these three lines, is natural, and worth preserving.
Steevens. 2 What lady's that, which doth enrich the hand
Of yonder knight?) Here is another proof that our author had the poem, and not Painter's Novel, in his mind. In the latter we are cold—“A certain lord of that troupe took Juliet by the hand to dance.”
In the poem of Romeus and Juliet, as in the play, her partner is a knight : * With torch in hand a comely knight did fetch her forth
to dance." Malone. 3 Her beauty hangs upon the cheek of night -] Shakspeare has the same thought in his 27th Sonnet:
“Which, like a jewel hung in ghastly night,
“ Makes black night beauteous, and her old face new." The quartos 1597, 1599, 1609, and the folio 1623, coldly read:
It seems she hangs upon the cheek of night. It is to the folio 1632, that we are indebied for the present read. ing, which is certainly the more elegant, if not the true one. The repetition, however, of the word beauty, in the next line but one, in my opinion, confirms the emendation of our second folio.
Steevens 4 Like a rich jewel in an Ethiop's ear:] So, in Lyly's Euphues:
“ A fair pearl in a Morian's ear." H. White. VO!. X:12
The measure done, I 'll watch her place of stand,
Tyb. This, by his voice, should be a Montague:-
I Cap. Young Romeo is 't?
'Tis he, that villain Romeo.
Tyb. It fits, when such a villain is a guest;
He shall be endur'd;
Tyb. Why, uncle, 'tis a shame.
Go to, go to,
You must contrary me! marry, 'tis time-
Tyb. Patience perforces with wilful choler meeting,
This holy shrine, the gentle fine is this, My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand
To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss. Jul. Good pilgrim, you do wrong your hand too much,
Which mannerly devotion shows in this; For saints have hands that pilgrims' hands do touch,
And palm to palm is holy palmers' kiss. Rom. Have not saints lips, and holy palmers too? Jul. Ay, pilgrim, lips that they must use in prayer. Rom. O then, dear saint, let lips do what hands do;
to scath you;] i. e. to do you an injury. Steevens. 7 - You are a princox; go:] A princox is a coxcomb, a conceited person.
The word is used by Ben Jonson, in The Case is Alter'd, 1609; by Chapman, in his comedy of May-Day, 1610; in The Return from Parnassus, 1606: “ Your proud university Princox.”—Again, in Fuimus Troes, 1633: “ That Princox proud.” And indeed by most of the old dramatick writers. Cotgrave renders un jeune estourdeau superbe-a young princox boy. Steevens.
The etymology of the word princox may be found in Florio's Italian Dictionary, 1598, in v. Pinchino. It is rather a cockered or spoiled child, than a coxcomb. Malone.
& Patience perforce -] This expression is in part proverbial: the old adage is
* Patience perforce is a medicine for a mad dog.” Steevens. 9 If I profane with my unworthy hand
This holy shrine, the gentle fine is this,-
All profanations are supposed to be expiated either by some meritorious action, or by some penance undergone, and punishment submitted to. So Romeo would here say, If I have been profane in the rude touch of my hand, my lips stand ready, as two blushing pilgrims, to take off that offence, to atone for it by a sweet penance. Our poet therefore must have wrote:
the gentle fine is this. Warburton.
They pray, grant thou, lest faith turn to despair.
Jul. Saints do not niove, though grant for prayers' sake.
Rom. Then move not, while my prayer's effect I take. Thus from my lips, by yours, my sin is purg'd.
[Kissing her.2 Jul. Then have my lips the sin that they have took.
Rom. Sin from my lips? O trespass sweetly urg'd! . Give me my sin again. Jul.
You kiss by the book.S Nurse. Madam, your mother craves a word with you.
10 then, dear saint, let lips do what hands do;
They pray, grant thou, lest faith turn to despair.] Juliet had said before that « palm to palm was holy palmers' kiss.” She after. wards says that “palmers have lips that they must use in prayer." Romeo replies, that the prayer of his lips was, that they might de what hands do; that is, that they might kiss: M. Mason.
2 [Kissing her. ] Our poet here, without doubt, copied from the mode of his own time: and kissing a lady in a publick assembly, we may conclude, was not thought indecorous. In King Henry VIII, he in like manner makes Lord Sands kiss Anne Boleyn, next to whom he sits at the supper given by Cardinal Wolsey.
Malone. 3 You kiss by the book.] In As you like it, we find it was usual to quarrel by the book, and we are told in the note, that there were books extant for good manners. Juliet here appears to refer to a third kind, containing the art of courtship, an example from which it is probable that Rosalind hath adduced. Henley.
Of all men who have loosed themselves on Shakspeare, none is there who so inveigleth me to amorous meditations, as the cri. tic aforesaid. In Antony and Cleopatra he sore vexed and disquieted mine imagination touching the hair and voice of women; in King Leur he hinted at somewhat touching noninos; and lo! now disserteth he on lip-gallantry! But (saith a wag at mine elbow) on the business of kissing, surely Calista's question might be ad. dressed to our commentator-5 Is it become an art then? a trick that bookmen can teach us to do over?” I believe, no disserta. tion, or guide, to this interchange of fondness was ever penned, at least while Shakspeare was alive. All that Juliet means to say is-vou kiss methodically; you offer as many reasons for kissing, as could have been found in a treatise professedly written on the subject. When Hamlet observes on the Grave-digger's equivoca. tion " we must speak by the card,” can he be supposed to have had a literal meaning? Without reference to books, however, Juliet betrays little ignorance on the present occasion; but could have said (with Mortimer, in King Henry IV,)
" I understand thy kisses, and thou mine;
Rom. What is her mother?
Is she a Capulet?
Ben. Away, begone; the sport is at the best.
1 Cap. Nay, gentlemen, prepare not to be gone;
Exeunt all but JUL. and Nurse
4 We have a trifling foolish banquet towards.] Towards is ready, at hand. So, in Hamlet:
“ What might be towards, that this sweaty haste
“ Doth make the night joint labourer with the day?" Again, in The Phænix, by Middleton, 1607 : “here's a voyage towards, will make us all.” Steevens.
It appears, from the former part of this scene, that Capulet's company had supped. A banquet, it should be remembered, often meant, in old times, nothing more than a collation of fruit, wine, &c. So, in The Life of Lord Cromwell, 1602:
“Their dinner is our banquet after dinner.” Again, in Howel's Chronicle of the Civil Wars, 1661, p. 662: “ After dinner, he was served with a banquet.” Malone.
It appears, from many circumstances, that our ancestors quit. ted their eating-rooms as soon as they had dined, and in warm weather retired to buildings constructed in their gardens. These were called banqueting-houses, and here their dessert was served.
Steevens. 5 Come hither, nurse: What is yon gentleman?] This and the following questions are taken from the novel. Steevens. See the poem of Romeus and Juliet. Malone.