Imagens da página
PDF
ePub

Ari. 'Thou liest, thou canst not.

Cal. What a pied ninny's this?6 Thou scurvy patch!I do beseech thy greatness, give him blows, And take his bottle from him: when that's gone, He shall drink nought but brine; for I'll not shew him Where the quick freshes are.

Ste. Trinculo, run into no further danger: interrupt the monster one word further, and, by this hand, I'll turn my mercy out of doors, and make a stock-fish of thee.

Trin. Why, what did I? I did nothing; I'll go further off. Ste. Didst thou not say,

he lied? Ari. Thou liest.

Ste. Do I so? take thou that. [Strikes him.] As you like this, give me the lie another time.

Trin. I did not give the lie :-Out o' your wits, and hearing too?

-A pox o' your bottle! this can sack, and drinking do.—A murrain on your monster, and the devil take your fingers!

Cal. Ha, ha, ha!

Ste. Now, forward with your tale. Prythee stand further off.

Cal. Beat him enough: after a little time, I'll beat him too.

Ste. Stand further.—Come, proceed.

Cal. Why, as I told thee, 'tis a custom with him l' the afternoon to sleep: there thou may'st brain him, Having first seiz'd his books; or, with a log Batter his skull, or paunch him, with a stake,

6 What a pied ninny's this?] It should be remembered that Trinculo is no sailor, but a jester; and is so called in the ancient dramatis persone. He therefore wears the party-coloured dress of one of these characters. See fig. XII. in the plate annexed to the First Part of K. Henry IV. and Mr. Tollet's explanation of it. So, in the Devil's Law Case, 1623:

“ Unless I wear a pied fool's coat.” Steevens. Dr. Johnson observes, that Caliban could have no knowledge of the striped coat, usually worn by fools; and would, therefore, transfer this speech to Stephano. But though Caliban might not know this circumstance, Shakspeare did. Surely he, who has given to all countries and all ages the manners of his own, might forget himself here, as well as in other places. Malone.

Or cut his wezand with thy knife: Remember,
First to possess his books; for, without them,
He's but a sot, as I am, nor hath not
One spirit to command:7 They all do hate him,
As rootedly as I: Burn but his books:
He has brave utensils, (for so he calls them,)
Which, when he has a house, he'll deck withal.
And that most deeply to consider, is
The beauty of his daughter; he himself
Calls her a non-pareil: I ne'er saw woman, 8,

7

Remember,
First to possess his books; for without them
He's but a sot, as I am, nor hath not

One spirit to command:] Milton, in his Masque at Ludlow Castle, seems to have caught a hint from the foregoing passage:

“Oh, ye mistook; ye should have snatch'd his wand,
“ And bound him fast; without his rod revers’d,
“ And backward mutters of dissevering power,

“ We cannot free the lady.”. Steevens. In a former scene, Prospero says:

I'll to my book ;
“ For yet, ere supper time, must I perform

“ Much business appertaining." Again, in Act V:

“ And deeper than did ever plummet sound,

“ I'll drown my book.” In the old romances, the sorcerer is always furnished with a book, by reading certain parts of which, he is enabled to summon to his aid whatever dæmons or spirits he has occasion to employ. When he is deprived of his book, his power ceases. Our author might have observed this circumstance much insisted on, in the Orlando Innamorato, of Boyardo, (of which, as the Rev. Mr. Bowle informs me, the three first Cantos were translated and published in 1598,) and also in Harrington's translation of the Orlando Furioso, 1591.

A few lines from the former of these works may prove the best illustration of the passage before us.

Angelica, by the aid of Argalia, having bound the enchanter Malagigi:

« The damsel searcheth forthwith in his breast,
“ And there the damned booke she straightway founde,
“ Which circles strange, and shapes of fiendes exprest:
“ No sooner she some wordes therein did sound,
“ And opened had some damned leaves unblest,
“ But spirits of th' ayre, earth, sea, came out of hand,

“ Crying alowde, what is’t you us command ?Malone. 8 Calls her a non-pareil: I ne'er saw woman,] The old copy reads: “ Calls her a non-pareil : I never saw a woman.” But this

But only Sycorax my dam, and she;
But she as far surpasseth Sycorax,
As greatest does least.

Ste. Is it so brave a lass?

Cal. Ay, lord; she will become thy bed, I warrant, And bring thee forth brave brood.

Ste. Monster, I will kill this man: his daughter and I will be king and queen; (save our graces!) and Trinculo and thyself shall be viceroys:-Dost thou like the plot, Trinculo?

Trin. Excellent.

Ste. Give me thy hand; I am sorry I beat thee: but, while thou livest, keep a good tongue in thy head.

Cal. Within this half hour will he be asleep;
Wilt thou destroy him then?
Ste.

Ay, on mine honour.
Ari. This will I tell my master.

Cal. Thou mak’st me merry: I am full of pleasure; Let us be jocund: Will you troll the catch You taught me but while-ere?

Ste. At thy request, monster, I will do reason, any reason: Come on, Trinculo, let us sing. [Sings.

Flout 'em, and skout 'em; and skout 'em, and flout 'em;

Thought is free.
Cal. That's not the tune.

[ARIEL plays the tune on a tabor and pipe. Ste. What is this same?

verse, being too long by a foot, Hanmer judiciously gave it, as it now stands in the text.

By means as innocent, the versification of Shakspeare, has, I hope, in many instances been restored. The temerity of some critics had too long imposed severe restraints on their successors.

Steevens. 9 Will you troll the catch - ] Ben Jonson uses the word in Every Man in his Humour :

“ If he read this with patience, I'll troul ballads." Again, in the Cobler's Prophecy, 1594:

“ A fellow that will troul it off with tongue.

Faith, you shall hear me troll it, after my fashion.” To troll a catch, I suppose, is to dismiss it trippingly from the tongue. Steevens.

[ocr errors]

Trin. This is the tune of our catch, played by the picture of No-body.1

Ste. If thou beest a man, shew thyself in thy likeness: if thou beest a devil, take't as thou list.

Trin. O, forgive me my sins!

Ste. He that dies, pays all debts: I defy thee:-Mercy upon

us! Cal. Art thou afeard ?2 Ste. No, monster, 'not I.

Cal. Be not afeard; the isle is full of noises, Sounds, and sweet airs, that give delight, and hurt not. Sometimes, a thousand twangling instruments Will hum about mine ears; and sometime voices, That, if I then had wak’d, after long sleep, Will make me sleep again: and then, in dreaming, The clouds, methought, would open, and shew riches Ready to drop upon me; that, when I wak’d, I cry'd, to dream again.

Ste. This will prove a brave kingdom to me, where I shall have my music for nothing.

Cal. When Prospero is destroyed.
Ste. That shall be by and by: I remember the story.

Trin. The sound is going away: let's follow it, and after, do our work.

Ste. Lead, monster; we'll follow.—I would, I could see this taborer:3 he lays it on.

2

1 This is the tune of our catch, played by the picture of No-body.) A ridiculous figure, sometimes represented on signs. Westward for Smelts, a book, which our author appears to have read, was printed for John Trundle, in Barbican, at the signe of the No-body.

Malone. The allusion is here to the print of No-body, as prefixed to the anonymous comedy of No-body and Some-body;" without date, but printed before the year 1600. Reed.

afeard?] Thus the old copy.--To affear is an obsolete verb, with the same meaning as to affray. So, in the Shipmannes Tale of Chaucer, v. 13,330:

“ This wif was not aferde, ne affraide.Between aferde and affraide, in the time of Chaucer, there might have been some nice distinction, which is at present lost.

Steevens. 3 I would I could see this taborer:] Several of the incidents, in this scene, viz.–Ariel's mimickry of Trinculo-the tune played on the tabor,—and Caliban's description of the twangling instru

Trin. Wilt come? I'll follow, Stephano.* [Exeunt.

SCENE III.

Another part of the Island.

Enter ALONSO, SEBASTIAN, ANTONIO, GONZALO,

ADRIAN, FRANCISCO, and others.

Gon. By’r lakin,5 I can go no further, sir; My old bones ache: here's a maze trod, indeed, Through forth-rights, and meanders! by your patience, I needs must rest me. Alon.

Old lord, I cannot blame thee, Who am, myself, attach'd with weariness, To the dulling of my spirits: sit down, and rest. Even here, I will put off my hope, and keep it No longer for my flatterer: he is drown'd, Whom thus we stray to find; and the sea mocks

ment, &c.-might have been borrowed from Marco Paolo, the
old Venetian voyager; who in Lib. I. ch. 44, describing the de-
sert of Lop in Asia, says—" Audiuntur ibi voces demonum, &c.
voces fingentes eorum quos comitari se putant. Audiuntur interdum
in aere concentus musicorum instrumentorum,” &c. This passage
was rendered accessible to Shakspeare, by an English translation
entitled The most noble and famous Trauels of Marcus Paulus, one
of the Nobilitie of the State of Venice, &c. bl. 1. 4to. 1579, by John
Frampton. - You shall heare in the ayre the sound of tabers
and other instruments, to put the trauellers in feare, &c. by euill
spirites, that make these soundes, and also do call diuerse of the
trauellers by their names,” &c. ch. 36. p. 32.
To some of these circumstances Milton also alludes:

calling shapes, and beckoning shadows dire,
“ And aery tongues, that syllable men's names,
“ On sands, and shores, and desert wildernesses."

Steevens. 4 Wilt come? I'll follow, Stephano.] The first words are ad. dressed to Caliban, who, vexed at the folly of his new companions idly running after the musick, while they ought only to have at. tended to the main point, the despatching Prospero, seems for some little time, to have staid behind. Heath.

The words-Wilt come? should be added to Stephano's speech, I'll follow, is Trinculo's answer. Ritson.

By’r lakin,] i. e. The diminutive only of our lady, i. e. ladykin. Steevens.

5

« AnteriorContinuar »