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We shall have shortly discord in the spheres:-
Duke S. Whý, how now, monsieur! what a life is this,
Jaq. A fool, a fool !- I met a fool i' the forest,
5 A motley fool;-a miserable world!] What! because he met a motley fool, was it therefore a miserable world? This is sadly blundered; we should read:
a miserable varlet. His head is altogether running on this fool, both before and after these words, and here he calls him a miserable varlet, notwithstanding he railed on lady Fortune in good terms, &c. Nor is the change we may make, so great as appears at first sight.
Warburton. I see no need of changing world to varlet, nor, if a change were necessary, can I guess how it should certainly be known that varlet is the true word. A miserable world is a parenthetical exclamation, frequent among melancholy men, and natural to Jaques at the sight of a fool, or at the hearing of reflections on the fra. gility of life. Johnson.
6 Call me not fool, till heaven hath sent me fortune : ] Fortuna favat fatuis, is, as Mr. Upton observes, the saying here alluded to; or, as in Publius Syrus:
“ Fortuna, nimium quem fovet, stultum facit.” So, in the Prologue to The Alchemist :
« Fortune, that favours fooles, these two short houres
• We wish away.”
Sog. Why, who am I, sir?
'Tis but an hour ago, since it was nine ;
Duke S. What fool is this?
Jaq. O worthy fool!-One that hath been a courtier;
Duke S. Thou shalt have one.
It is my only suit;8
Motley's the only wear.] It would have been unneces. sary to repeat that a motley, or parti-coloured coat, was anciently the dress of a fool, had not the editor of Ben Jonson's works been mistaken in his comment on the 53d Epigram:
where (out of motley) 's he “ Could save that line to dedicate to thee?” Motley, says Mr. Whalley, is the man who out of any odd mix. ture, or old scraps, could save, &c. whereas it means only, Who but a fool, i. e. one in a suit of motley, &c.
The observation-Motley's the only wear, might have been sug. gested to Shakspeare by the following line in the 4th Satire of Donne:
“ Your only wearing is your grogaram.” Steevens.
Fohnson. The poet meant a quibble. So, Act V: “ Not out of your apparel, but out of your suit.” Steevens.
To blow on whom I please; for so fools have:
The wise man's folly is anatomiz'd
Duke S. Fy on thee! I can tell what thou wouldst do.
Duke S. Most mischievous foul sin, in chiding sin:
as large a charter as the wind,] So, in King Henry V:
“ The wind, that charter'd libertine, is still.” Malone. 1 Not to seem senseless of the bob:] The old copies read onlySeem senseless, &c. Not to were supplied by Mr. Theobald. See the following note. Steevens.
Besides that the third verse is defective one whole foot in mea. sure, the tenour of what Jaques continues to say, and the reasoning of the passage, show it no less ciefective in the sense. There is no doubt, but the two little monosyllables, which I have supplied, were either by accident wanting in the manuscript, or by inadvertence were left out. Theobald.
if not, &c.] Unless men have the prudence not to appear touched with the sarcasms of a jester, they subject themselves to his power; and the wise man will have his folly anatomized, that is, dissected and laid open, by the 'squandring glances or random shots of a fool. Fohnson. 3 Cleanse the foul body of the infectel world,] So, in Macbeth:
“ Cleanse the stuff’d bosom of the perilous stuff.” Douce.
- for a counter,] Dr. Farmer observes to me, that about the time when this play was written, the French counters (i. e. pieces of false money used as a means of reckoning) were brought into use in England. They are again mentioned in Troilus and Cressida:
will you with counters sum “ The past-proportion of his infinite?" Steevens. 5 As sensual as the brutish sting - ] Though the brutish sting is
And all the embossed sores, and headed evils,
Jaq. Why, who cries out on pride,
capable of a sense not inconvenient in this passage, yet as it is a harsh and unusual mode of speech, I should read the brutish fly.
Fohnson I believe the old reading is the true one. So, in Spenser's Fairy Queen, B. I, c. viii:
" A heard of bulls whom kindly rage doth sting.” Again, B. II, c. xii:
“ As if that hunger's point, or Venus' sting,
“ Had them enrag‘d." Again, in Othello:
our carnal stings, our unbitted lusts.” Steevens. 6 Till that the very very —] The old copy reads_weary very. Corrected by Mr. Pope. Malone.
his bravery -] i. e. his fine clothes. So, in The Taming of the Shrew: “ With scarfs and fans, and double change of bravery.”
Steevens. : There then; How, what then? &c.] The old copy reads, very redundantly
There then; How then? What then? &c.] Steevens. I believe we should read-Where then? So, in Othello:
- What then? How then? Where's satisfaction?" Malone.
Enter ORLANDO, with his sword drawn.
Why, I have eat none yet.
Duke S. Art thou thus bolden’d, man, by thy distress; Or else a rude despiser of good manners, That in civility thou seem'st so empty?
Orl. You touch'd my vein at first; the thorny point Of bare distress hath ta'en from me the show Of smooth civility:9 yet am I inland bred, And know some nurture:2 But forbear, I say; He dies, that touches any of this fruit, Till I and my affairs are answered.
Jaq. An you will not be answered with reason, I must die. Duke S. What would you have? Your gentleness shall
Orl. I almost die for food, and let me have it.
Orl. Speak you so gently? Pardon me, I pray you:
the thorny point
Of smooth civility:] We might read torn with more elegance, but elegance alone will not justify alteration. Fohnson.
inland bred,] Inland here, and elsewhere in this play, is the opposite to outland, or upland. Orlando means to say, that he had not been bred among clowns. H. White. 2 And know some nurture:] Nurture is education, breeding,
So, in Greene's Never too late, 1616:
“ He shew'd himself as full of nurture as of nature.” Again, as Mr. Holt White observes to me, Barret says, in his Alvearie, 1580: “ It is a point of nurture, or good manners, to salute them that you meete. Urbanitatis est salutare obvios."
Steevens. St. Paul advises the Ephesians, in his Epistle, ch. vi, 4, to bring their children up “in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.” Harris.