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wilderness. Chapman, Bussy d'Ambois, v. 1, Old English Plays, vol. iii. p. 322,
and study The errant wilderness of a woman's face;" read, metro postulante, wildness. Possibly in the manuscript it was written wildenesse (though this does not seem a likely spelling), whence the error.
2, ad fin.,
“ With Angelo to-night shall lie
His old betrothed, but despis’d;
And perform an old contracting.”
“ Hover through th' fog and filthy air.”
iv. 1, near the beginning,—“much upon this time have I promised here to meet. Mari. You have not been inquired after.” Was meet, used absolutely, good English in Shakespeare's age any more than now ? Qu., “to meet —” (yet, on the other hand, why should Mariana interrupt him ?) See is used in a manner somewhat similar, Troilus and Cressida, iv. 4, and Cymbeline, i. 2,
“ When shall we see again ?”
“ There have I made my promise to call on him,
Upon the heavy middle of the night.”
“ There haue I made my promise vpon the
Heauy midle of the to call vpon him."
It is impossible that such a change, as that supposed in the received reading, could have taken place through mere corruption. The lines wanted only new arranging,–
“ There have I made my promise
Upon the heavy middle of the night
To call upon him." 3 Lines of seven syllables—though not so common as those of five or six—are, like them (see S. V., Art. liv.), legitimate parts of Shakespeare's metrical system ; as much so as the ten-syllable one itself. What is unusual in the case, is the slightness of the pause at the end of the line; short lines being usually followed by a full stop, or something very
like it. Much Ado &c. iv. 1,
“What do you mean, my lord ? Claudio.
Not to be married ; Not to knit my soul to an approved wanton.” Arrange
“ What do you mean, my lord ? Claudio. Not to be married ; not to knit my soul
To an approved wanton."
“ And rack thee in their fancies.— Welcome! How agreed?" 'greed, as a few lines above, and elsewhere; e.J., Antony and Cleopatra, ii. 6,
this 'greed upon, To part with unhack'd edges,” &c. 3 The recent editors lave been unfortunate here. They mostly
“ There have I made my promise on the heavy
Middle of the night to call upon him ;" the measure of which, according to Mr. Collier, “is not defective, though rather harsh.” The last line has every accent on the wrong syllable !- Ed.
Ib., ad fin.,
“ Our corn's to reap, for yet our tithe's 4 to sow.” See Var. notes. Undoubtedly tilth's.
" By cold gradation and weal.balanc'd form." Well-balanc'd 5 of course.
If you can, pace your wisdom
you shall have your bosom on this wretch," &c. Point (in the folio, too, there is no comma after can), —
If you can pace your wisdom In Standing thus, the construction is very harsh ; I think quite beyond the limits of Shakespearian grammar. I believe that a line is lost after go.
16.,-"- I dare not for my head fill my belly; one fruitful meal would set me to 't.” Bountiful, copious. Othello, ii. 3,
she's fram'd as fruitful As the free elements."
4 According to Mr. Knight, tithe means “seed which is to produce tenfold :" in other words, division is the same as multiplication; to=10.-Ed.
5 This reading did not originate with Hanmer, as is usually supposed; it is found in Rowe and Pope. Strange to say, neglected by Theobald, Warburton, Capell, and Johnson, not to mention Malone, Mr. Knight, and (in his first edition) Mr. Collier. It has been received by Mr. Dyce, Mr. Staunton, Mr. Halliwell, and now by Mr. Collier. It is also found in the Old Corrector. -Ed.
King Lear, iv. 6, near the end,—" —if your will want not, time and place will be fruitfully offered.”
v. 1, we should arrange, perhaps,
No, my good lord ; Nor wish'd to hold my peace. Duke. I wish you now, then ; pray [for pray you] take note of it:
And when you have a business for yourself,
Pray heaven, you then be perfect. Lucio.
I warrant your honour.” For warrant, see S. V., Art. iv. p.
“ But at this instant he is sick, my lord,
Of a strange fever.” Strange is quite alien here. Read strong. He is too ill to
The converse of the error in the Comedy of Errors, ii. 2, fol. p. 89, col. 2,
" Whose weaknesse married to thy stranger state,
Makes me with thy strength to communicate.” In this latter play, v. 1,
“ Anon, I wot not by what strong escape,
He broke from those that had the guard of him ;'' (atque ita fol.) read strange. As You Like It, i. 3,-_“Is it possible on such a sudden, you should fall into so strong a liking with Sir Rowland's youngest son ?" (here, too, the folio agrees with all the editions.) Strange, I think. King Richard II. v. 3,
“ O heinous, strong, and bold conspiracy!” Strange. King Lear, ii. 1,
O strong and fasten'd villain !”
Fol., strange. Partly perhaps from strangeness (erratum for strange news) eleven lines below. Machin, Dumb Knight, ii., near the end, Dodsley, vol. iv. p. 409,
“ Yet if my tears may mollify thy heart,
Receive them as the flood of strangest tides ;
Turn not thy face from her that dotes on thee.” Strongest. Beaumont and Fletcher, Custom of the Country, sc. ult., near the beginning,
I am troubled, strongly troubled." Strangely, I suspect.
COMEDY OF ERRORS. i. 1,
“ And this it was,—for other means were none,
The sailors sought for safety by our boat,” &c. Read thus.
yet often touching will Wear gold,” &c. Read, “ And so no man, that hath ” &c. Suggested by a note in the Variorum ; and so indeed some editions have it.
“ Unless I spake, or look’d, or touch'd, or carv'd to thee." Qu., carv'd thee. Besides that carv'd to thee makes the verse drag, Shakespeare, as I have observed elsewhere, in his earlier plays eschews the trisyllabic ending altogether. Two Noble Kinsmen, where the Doctor is giving directions to the wooer as to the behaviour to be observed in the company of his mistress, the jailor's daughter; iv. 3, near