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Coriolanus says of Menenius :
This man, Aufidius,
Was my belov'd in Rome.-Coriol., v. 2. And Antony says of the friendship entertained by Cæsar for Brutus:
For Brutus, as you know, was Cæsar's angel :
Judge, oh, you gods, how dearly Cæsar lov'd him !- 7ul. C., iii. 2.
Hath Cassius liv'd
Bru. When I spoke that, I was ill-temper'd too.
What's the matter?
Yes, Cassius; and, from henceforth,
He 'll think your mother chides, and leave you so.-Ibid., iv. 3.
How true a gentleman you send relief,
As I slew my best lover for the good of Rome.-Jul. C., iii. 2.
He hath got his friend with child.-M. for M., i. 5.
You are a friend, and therein the wiser.-Cym., i. 5. The demonstrations between men-friends were often formerly of extreme tenderness, without being felt to impair manly dignity; and of this kind are the indications of attachment between Antonio and Bassanio:
I saw Bassanio and Antonio part :
Give me your hand, Bassanio: fare you well!
I'll pay it instantly with all my heart.-Mer. of V., iv, 1. And also this description of York and Suffolk, dying together on the battle-field, while the describer, Exeter, and the hearer, King Harry V., are not afraid to own the manly tears they feel it forces from them :
Suffolk first died: and York, all haggled over,
I blame you not ;
With mistful eyes, or they will issue too.--H. V., iv. 6. That the usage existed in England in Shakespeare's time—as it still exists on the Continent—of men embracing each other when they meet or take leave, we have many indications in his contemporary writers as well as in his own writings. The martial Coriolanus says to his fellow-general, Cominius :
0, let me clip you In arms as sound as when I woo'd.-Coriol., i. 6. And the warlike Aufidius, rejoicing to find his old opponent Coriolanus under his roof at Antium, exclaims :
Let me twine
The anvil of my sword.—Ibid., iv. 5. Biron, on discovering that he, the king, and the two companion noblemen, are all in love, cries joyfully :
Sweet lords, sweet lovers, O, let us embrace !--Love's L. L., iv. 3.
Petruchio, meeting on the road the father of his brother-in-law, thus salutes the gentleman :
Let me embrace with old Vincentio.—Tam. of S., iv. 5.
Come, sir, come;
And give you to the gods.-Ant. & C., iii. 2. As a token of the extreme intimacy and familiarity of intercourse that subsisted formerly between men-friends, we find denotement that they often occupied the same bed-room, and even the same bed together.
Exeter, speaking indignantly of Lord Scroop's treason towards the king, says:
Nay, but the man that was his bedfellow,*
His sovereign's life to death and treachery !-H. V., ii. 2. Owing to this custom, the term became used to express close intimacy and affectionate companionship :
He loves your people;
Oh, world, thy slippery turns! Friends now fast sworn,
To bitterest enmity.-Ibid., iv. 4.
I lay with Cassio lately ;
BEAST AND MAN. Shakespeare frequently uses " beast” and man” in contradistinction each to each-the one as the type of inhumanity, the other of humanity-or the one as representing unintelligence, the other intelligence; and his practice in this respect serves to show that the original is the right reading in the disputed instance of the passage
Holinshed records this circumstance: “ The said Lord Scroop was in such favour with the king that he admitted him sometime to be his bedfellow.'
Macbeth,” which we have cited among the rest to show how it is but one of many parallel cases occurring in his works :
O powerful love! that, in some respects, makes a beast a man ; in some other, a man a beast.-Merry W., v. 5.
When he is best, he is little worse than a man; and when he is worst, he is little better than a beast.-Mer. of V., i. 2.
I think he be transformed into a beast;
For showing me again the eyes of man !- Ibid., iv. 3.
Wouldst thou have thyself fall in the confusion of men, and remain a beast with the beasts ?-Ibid., iv. 3.
O, thou touch of hearts !
Ibid., v. 4 (Inscription).
What beast was't, then,
What is a man,
While I may 'scape,
Allow not nature more than nature needs,
Good sir, be a man.-Oth., iv, 1.
Feeds beast as man.-Ant. & C., i, 1. Shakespeare puts the word “ beast " into a woman's mouth as a term of strongest reprobation for unmanliness and unnaturalness :
Sweet sister, let me live:
O, you beast !
Wilt thou be made a man out of my vice?--M. for M., And into another woman's mouth to express a creature devoid of natural feeling,' • an inhuman monster':
O, what a beast was I to chide at him !-R. & Jul., iii. 2.
BITTER PUNS AND PLAYS ON WORDS: CONCEITS. With his marvellous insight into the hidden springs of human passion as well as its effusive vents, the sources of emotion as well as its external signs, Shakespeare could hardly fail of denoting-among other fantastic shapes that human feeling takes—the proneness of some natures in moments of acute mental suffering to seek relief from the utterance of some bitter jest or whimsical quibble. He has a passage that directly draws attention to this practice. When the dying John of Gaunt, desperately grieving at his nephew King Richard's blindly pursued downward course, makes punning illustrations in reference to his own name, " Gaunt," the king exclaims, “ Can sick men play so nicely with their names ?” And Gaunt replies, “ No, misery makes sport to mock itself." ("* Richard II.," act ii., sc. 1.) And on reference to this scene, a long string of instances will be found in addition to the following, which serve to show Shakespeare's sagacity in knowing as well as indicating this phase of passionate expression :
For life, I prize it
And only that I stand for.-W. T., iii. 2. This is said by Hermione, a woman of strong self-control; and she uses the word spare" with concentratedly witty felicity of varied significance, partly in its sense of ‘part with,' do without,' • let go, partly in that of forbear from destroying,' or shield from destruction,' and partly in that of avoid encountering ;' so that her sentence tersely implies, • I estimate life as I estimate grief-things