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Tam. What begg'st thou then ? fond woman, let me go'.
Lav. 'Tis present death I beg; and one thing more,
Where never man's haritable murderers of their fee :
Tam. So should I rob my sweet sons of their fee:
Dem. Away! for thou hast stay'd us here too long.
[Rising'. The blot and enemy to our general name! Confusion fall Chi. Nay, then I'll stop your mouth.-Bring thou her husband :
[Dragging off LAVINIA. This is the hole where Aaron bid us hide him. [Exeunt.
Tam. Farewell, my sons : see, that you make her sure. Ne'er let my heart know merry cheer indeed, Till all the Andronici be made away. Now will I hence to seek my lovely Moor, And let my spleenful sons this trull deflower. [Exit.
Enter AARON, with Quintus and MARTIUS.
Quin. My sight is very dull, whate'er it bodes.
1 - FOND woman, let me go.] Here, as in many other places, both before and afterwards, to which it is unnecessary here particularly to refer, “fond” is to be taken in the sense of foolish.
Rising.] This word and the preceding “ Kneeling" are stage-directions inserted in the corr. fo. 1632.
3 - to the LOATHSOME pit,] The epithet “ loathsome" may have been that of the poet, and we leave it, merely noting that the corr. fo. 1632 substitutes lone. some ; which, for various reasons, may seem more applicable.
Well could I leave our sport to sleep awhile.
Martius falls into the pit. Quin. What! art thou fallen? What subtle hole is this, Whose mouth is cover'd with rude-growing briars, Upon whose leaves are drops of new-shed blood, As fresh as morning's dew distillid on flowers ? A very fatal place it seems to me :Speak, brother, hast thou hurt thee with the fall ?
Mart. Oh, brother! with the dismall'st object hurt“, That ever eye with sight made heart lament. Aar. [Aside.] Now will I fetch the king to find them
here; That he thereby may give a likely guess", How these were they that made away his brother.
[Exit AARON. Mart. Why dost not comfort me, and help me out From this un hallow'd and blood-stained hole?
Quin. I am surprised with an uncouth fear;
Mart. To prove thou hast a true-divining heart,
Quin. Aaron is gone; and my compassionate heart
Mart. Lord Bassianus lies embrewed here,
Quin. If it be dark, how dost thou know 'tis he?
. - the dismallist object hurt,) So the 4to, 1600: in the 4to, 1611, and all the folios, the word " hurt " is omitted. It is proper to note that, before this speech, the corr. fo. 1632 has the words Under the stage, in order to show that Martius was supposed to speak out of the "loathsome" or lonesome pit.
may give a likely guess,] So the 4to, 1600, while later impressions read have instead of "give." Mr. Singer in two notes, immediately following each other, repeats this information ; and we only mention it, lest it should be thought that the same variation occurs twice.
6 – how it is ;] The later 4to, and the folios read “ how it is :" the 4to, 1600, " who it is ;" but Quintus could not yet know, though he might suspect, that a dead body was in the pit.
A precious ring, that lightens all the hole,
Quin. Reach me thy hand, that I may help thee out;
Mart. Nor I no strength to climb without thy help.
Quin. Thy hand once more: I will not loose again, Till thou art here aloft, or I below. Thou canst not come to me; I come to thee. [Falls in.
Enter SATURNINUS and AARON.
Sat. Along with me :-I'll see what hole is here,
Mart. The unhappy son of old Andronicus,
Sat. My brother dead! I know, thou dost but jest:
Mart. We know not where you left him all alive,
7 — the dead man's EARTHY cheeks,] The 4to, 1600, has "earthy:" the 4to, 1611, and folio, earthly. It is not necessary to repeat here, from the Variorum Shakespeare, the several quotations in which it is shown, that there was an ancient and poetical superstition that the carbuncle gave light in the dark.
$- I left him there.] The 4to, 1600, has them for “him” of the 4to, 1611, and the folio. In the next two lines, the 4to, 1611, has them in the first instance, and " him " in the second. We prefer " him " for the sake of consistency.
Enter TAMORA, with Attendants; Trrus ANDRONICUS, and
Tam. Where is my lord, the king ?
Sat. Now to the bottom dost thou search my wound :
[Giving a letter.
Sat. [Reads.] “An if we miss to meet him handsomely,Sweet huntsman, Bassianus 'tis, we mean, Do thou so much as dig the grave for him. Thou know'st our meaning: look for thy reward Among the nettles at the elder tree, Which overshades the mouth of that same pit, Where we decreed to bury Bassianus. Do this, and purchase us thy lasting friends." 0, Tamora! was ever heard the like? This is the pit, and this the elder-tree. Look, sirs, if you can find the huntsman out, That should have murder'd Bassianus here. Aar. My gracious lord, here is the bag of gold.
[Showing it. Sat. Two of thy whelps, [To Titus] fell curs of bloody
Tam. What! are they in this pit? Oh, wondrous thing! How easily murder is discovered!
Tit. High emperor, upon my feeble knee I beg this boon, with tears not lightly shed; That this fell fault of my accursed sons, Accursed, if the fault be prov'd in them,
Sat. If it be prov'd! you see, it is apparent. Who found this letter? Tamora, was it you ?
Tam. Andronicus himself did take it up.
Tit. I did, my lord: yet let me be their bail;
Sat. Thou shalt not bail them : see, thou follow me.
Tam. Andronicus, I will entreat the king:
Enter DEMETRIUS and CHIRON, with LAVINIA, ravisheil; her
hands cut off, and her tongue cut out. Dem. So, now go tell, an if thy tongue can speak, Who 'twas cut out thy tongue, and ravish'd thee.
Chi. Write down thy mind, bewray thy meaning so;
Dem. See, how with signs and tokens she can scrowl'.
Dem. She hath no tongue to call, nor hands to wash;
Chi. An 'twere my case, I should go hang myself.
[Exeunt DEMETRIUS and CHIRON.
9 To answer this suspicion with their lives.] It is “their suspicion” in the early impressions, but it ought clearly to be “this suspicion " as we find it in the corr. fo. 1632: the old printer was confused by “their," near the end of the line, where it is proper enough. Three lines lower, he again blundered about the same word, and what he printed the ought to be “their”_"their guilt is plain."
10 Who 'twas cut out thy tongue, and ravish'd thee.] So the corr. fo. 1632 : the line in the 4tos. and folios is,
“Who 'twas that cut thy tongue," &c. but they had not merely cut her tongue, but cut it out, and the line ought to run as we have above given it. The cause of the lapse by the printer doubtless was the similarity of the words “cut” and “out” in the MS.
1- she can SCROWL.] So the 4tos, 1600 and 1611: the folio, scoul.