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Various Portraits of Shakspere. 


p-.ixman's Thalia. The Clowns and Fools of the Old Comedy in the Backpround. ll.eir lo.ignia being cm down at tt^ 

base of the Statue of Legitimate Comedy. N\ . Dicks. 


Title-page — Group embodying the final Scene, an 
original design by W. Harvet ' 


Autograph of Shakspcre, from his copy of Florio's 

Montaigne, now in the British Museum ' 

Costume of. Italian Gentleman (after Vecellio) 15 

Costume of Italian Nobleman (after Hoghenburg).. 15 

Ditto, second example ditto 16 

Costume of Italian Lady (after Vecellio) 1' 


Border of Flowers (after Domcnichino) 18 


Costume of P,n-e (arter Paul Veronese) .-• •• <' 

True ' 'ffora Boissard and » Print of the 

Open Place in Verona, including the Piazza Delia 

Bra (from an old Print) 

Verona— View on the Adige (from an old Print) 


A Beadsman 

Torture of the Boot (from Millneus) 

Silver Ducat of Venice 

Gold Ducat of Venice 

Tester— Shilling of Henry VIII 


Room in the Ducal Palace at Milan. A Composition 
Street in Milan (from Aspari) 



Beggar-man and Woman (from. the Roman de la 


Table-book (from Gesner) 








ACT Itl. 

General View of Milan 


«uc«.\ EU«abcth-.i Salt-ctUar (from NichoU"* Pro- 


Forest, with Outlaws tafter Salvator Rosa) •■•- 

Court of the Dukes PaUce at Milan. A Composition 


Friar Tuck (from Mr. Tollctfs window) 

St. Winifred's Welt (from an old Print) 

The Stocks (from Fox's Acts, A'C.) 

The Pillory (from ditto) 


The Abbey of St. Ambroslo at Milan (from an origi- 
nal Sketch) " ••••••• 

Triumph at MiUin. Composition after Hoghenburg 


Pageant. Designed from Sharii'. Dissertation on 
Coventry Pageants 


• .1 Head. The r " r---i).... 

« House at Str .r < ^f 

W. H. PisiB) 













Title-page— Group from Act V. : design by W. 
Hartet " 

iktbodcctort notice. 

Thalia, from an original Drawing by Cipriani 75 

Costume of a Spanish Gentleman and a French 

Lady, frum Vecellio ~ '^ 

dhamatis r««»o»«. 
Border, and a in Navane. near Pamp-luna- •• 

act. I. 
Dull, Costard, and Jta»en<:H*: (Te.lgn by It "• 

Bum gy 

Knotted Garden " '" 



la.lA..: l_i^;i 

■u.^ of the PrilKl•5^ ui 

: Navarre, and tlicir at- 

.>ijblc»: de»igii by G. F. 



Dull Arniaiio and ftfotli : design liy U. W. Buss.... 101 


Holofcrnes as Judas Maccabanis, and .Molli as 

Hercules: design by R. W. Buss 112 

Son;; of Winter: design by H. W. Buss 120 

The »■ 


■-. t:u'.-A i: 

jiituM .mil i uit.irii : iitiigii 

'. itoniic of Mclan- 



T: ibyn. W. Buss 07 

T! dc»i(pi by R. W. Buss 09 

TU ru;;.Uv! * Hoop: dctlgii by R. W. Buss 100 


Costume of Muscovites, from VecelUo 127 

Statute Caps 128 

Bowls: design by R. W. Buss 128 

Qiiarter-stafr: design by R. W. Buss 129 


Chimney Corner of Shaksperc's Kitchen, from an 

original Drawing by Edri ge 130 

I.ove's Labour's Lost acted before Qncen Klizabetli. 

Composition by R. \V. Buss 135 


Title-page. I .rn by W. llARVtv 1.37 


rartof ^Vlndior Caitlc, built in the time of Elizabeth 139 
Intl|{nia of the Order of the Garter HO 


Border, ftom a dciign by W. Harvey IJO 

i.i.den Front of Pagc'i House. — ' I pray you, Sir, 
,. , V ., • r- -m a deiign by T. Creswick 151 


Ma*t*r of Pence. From a design by R. W. Bcs:... ].yj 


• S^fil nf Hir Thomas Lucy IGO 

l»< I! loose.' R. \V. Buss IGl 

W »orC.'.?tl,. T. CiiEswicK 102 

ACT tl. 

.-.irr.-i r ,.,;,( ,1 i.ij,'c'« House. l.tiii;^wiCK 1C3 

Farm-houM I'orch. — ' At a farm-house, a feasting.' 
T Ckkhwick 170 

t; i.t -TH trioss ov act m. 

li 172 

J ' ibeth 1 1 Nonsuch House... 173 

BMcb. T. CasswicK 171 


Vlttcl, Windnor. T. C»r.ii\rit k 175 

Datehet Jilcad. — ' The rogues slighted me into the 
river.' T. Creswick 183 


Bucklersbury, with Woolcluirch. From Aggas's 

Map, 1578. F. Faikiiolt 185 

Old Bridge at Windsor. T. Cheswick ISO 


Ford's House, AVindsor. — ' Out of my door, you 

witch.' T. Cheswick 187 

Scene in Windsor Forest. T, Creswick 19-1 


Mumers 195 

Standing Bed and Truckle Bed 195 

Eton. T. Creswick 196 


' Heme's Oak.' From an old Sketch 197 


Oak and Avenue of Elms, Windsor Home Park 

T. Creswick 202 

Oak, near the site of Heme's Oak. T. Creswick. 205 


Windsor, 1839. T. Creswick 200 

Runncnicde, with a distant View of Windsor Caslle. 

From a Design by T. Citi.sw.iK 2C8 


Tlll« pafe, from an original design by W. H arvev. 200 

iwraoDfCTORT notice. 
nc«l"t>r,r. ..f the Hccond Temple of Diana, at 

9. 8tT 211 

He.: . -, ..JUS 2ID 

DKAMATIS pr.RioM;e. 
Border: Oioup of llulns at Epheius. H. Aselav ;;20 


Ephcsiia- 221 

•W- unler'dbTamighty Rock." W.Dicks 224 

act II. 

Remains of Qate at Ephesui 22C 

Kcmatn* of A '•:•• it Ephcsus 231 

Syracuse. G. F. Sargent 233 

' Sing, Siren.' Flaxman 238 

Remains of the Gymnasium, Ephesus 240 

■ Far from her nest, the Lapwing cries.' L. Wells 24G 

Remains of the Amphitheatre at Ephesus 2-18 

Corinth 253 


Thalia 2.i9 

Coin of Ephesus 2')i) 



Title-page. \V. IIahvf-T. 

. 2(51 


Noble Ihmtsnien. From the Frontispiece to the 

' Noble Art of Vfiu-rie or Huniiiif'.' 1011 ".'CS 

Kin;; J.-imcs I. nnd Attendants, hawking 2C8 

Knglish Lady and Hostess. From a Painting by 
M. Oerrard, and a Print by Strutt 209 


\\ incot. From a Drawing by S. Si.v 271 

Uarton-onthc-Hcatli. F. F.viaHoiT 275 


Abii-1-Hasa!i ?7C 

.\bu awakening in the I'alacc 280 

liorder: Composed Troni an original Drawing of a 
Uoum in llie Doge's Palace, Venice ; nnd Arti- 
cles from the Antique, Cellini, &c. kc 282 


Townhouse, Padua. From a Plate in • .>>luria 
DimostrazioncdellaCitta rti Padova,' 17C7 2S3 

Ladies of Padua. From Prints by Vecelllo and 
Welgel 200 

Pisa — showing the Baptister)-, Campo Santo, 
Church, and Leaning Tower. Froin a 
by Franciscus of Milan, 1705 293 


( hurch of St. GiuitinU, Padut. Fiom Plaie In 
* Storla Dimoitrailone delU Cllta dt Padova,' 
17C9 , 300 

• Hark, hark I I hear H " ' \y.' D*- 
bigned from Prints b\ ,. Joi 

Prato della Vallr, Padua.— Print by Plrannl, I7M 30« 
Mountain-road near Ar<iua —An orl|;in»l Sketch 
by II.Anklay „ 315 

Gymnasium, Padua.— From an old Piinl In Iho 
King's Library, Dritlth Muieum m.... 319 


Sly at the Alchouio Door.— Dctign by II. McL- 



Itinerant Playrri in a Country Hall.— I>v»i(n by 
II. Akklay „ JJJ 

' The pleasant garden uf great Italy.' View be- ■ 
twccn Piidu.T and the Ci>.i»t.- Dnlifn by II. 


Title p.ige. W. lUnvEV. 


iSTnoDrcTonY notice. 

Battle of the Amazons. From a Sarcophagus in 
the Imperial Cabinet at Vienna 331 

Athenian Costume. From the Elgin Marbles 333 

Ditto ditto 314 

Ditto ditto 334 

An Amazon. From a Statue in the Vatican S.'l.'i 


Bonier. From a design by W. Harvey. 

ACT 1. 


Hermia and Helena. W. H.\rvey. 

' And in the wood, where often you and I 
Upon faint primrose beds were wont to lie.'.... 337 
Bottom. W. Harvey. 

' I will roar you an 't were any nightingale' 3-12 


Bringing in the May-pole ."41 

Choragus instructing the Actors. From a Mosaic 
found at Pompeii 345 


Fairies. — Scenes I. and II. W. Harvey 34C 

Oberon enchanting Titanix Ditto. 

' What thou seest, when thou dost wake, 
Do it for thv true-love take.' 35J 

ACT 111. 

Bottom. W. Harvey. 'I will walk up and do«n 
here, and I will sing, that thry shall hear I am 

not afraid' jjj 

Puck. W. Harvey. 

' Up and down, up and down ; 
I will lead them up and down' SCI 


Gronpof Birds,- 'Thcwoosel-cock, ioblackof hue' St't 
Mount Taurus i*^ 


' When in a wood of Crete they bay'd the bear.' W. 

Harvey 3C) 

Bottom awaking. W. Harviv S7I 

ACT r. 

Palace of Thc»ein. W. M «rtict. 
' Now, until ■ ly, 

'I'hrought: i.tryilny' 173 

Purk. W. llARVt.v. 

' I nm sent, with broom, before, 
To iwcep the duit behind the door' S7S 

ILLl-STRATloy or ACT V. 

Tlieseuiand thcCrntAUt. From the Elgin Marble*. 37* 


Love in Idleneti ~ 3^1 

Groupof F.iitiLK. W. lltarcT „ J»l 




Ttie fn<e From • d?«l?n by W. HAkver 385 

I yoTICB. 

V !'rlnt of the 


> 38? 

. 'Hiibite Antichi' 39i 

Do. 39J 

1 be \oung Lover Do. SOU 

*i Do. 390" 

Do. 3yS 


1. . •- c. . c. I. ,. • ■• iiuccnt.iiir, 

i; Piazzctta. 

.1 • I 111/...., dciigiinta 

\ritonio Viscntiiii' 


*CT I. 

W. M. Prior 401 

•}'•• lOlli Century. — ' Arjjosies of 


'IF ACT 1. 

, an antique engraved 

' TriKlni.Ii'i if \r:t YirT>i!i:(f) ' 408 


Tanal in Venice. G.V. S.vnor.XT 410 

r - • '■ • • From Caiialetti 419 



Hand— shewing the principal lines and points used 
in Palmistry. From Indagine's Treatise 420 

Terminal Figure of Pan. From Townley Collec- 
tion in British Museum 421 

Gold Angel of Queen Elizabeth. 422 


JUalto Bridge. ^Y. H. PnioR 423 


The Goodwin Sands during a Storm. From a 
Sketch by S. Sly" 430 


Court of the Ducal Palace. W. H. Prior 434 

Piazzetta di San Marco. W. 11. Prior 440 


Bagpipes. From a Sculpture in Cirencester Church, 
temp. Henry VII ^^^ 


Avenue to Portia's House. G. F. Sargent 442 

'That light we see is burning in my hall.' G. F. 
Sargekt 44(5 


Caskets. From Titian and the Antique 449 

Italbn Crosses in Lombardy. From original 
Sketches 456 



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• The above autograph of " Willm. Shakspche " is copied from hii undoubted ttgnature in the toIuwit of Monuitfiu 
Ektays, by John Florio, which wa* purchased, for a large luin. bjr the Trustee* of the British Museum. 




We propose here to give a vcrj' brief account of the Original Copies, upon which tlie 
Text of every edition of our author must be founded. We reserve a more detailetl notice 
for a General Preface, when this new impression of the ' Pictorial Shakspor*',' with 
large corrections and additions, is more advanced. 

"Mr. William Shakspeare's Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies, published according 
to the True Originall Copies," is the title of this first collection of our poet's plays. 
This volume is "printed by Isaac laggard and Ed. Blount;" but the Dedication bears 
the signatures of "John Heminge, Henry Condell." That Blount and Jaggard had 
become the proprietors of this edition we learn from an entry in the Stationers' registcr>. 
under date November 8, 1G23; in which they claim "Mr. William Shakes jjcen.'- 
Comedyes, Histories, and Tragedyes, soe many of the said copies as are not fonncrly 
entered to other men." 

Most of the plays "formerly entered to other men" had been previously published — 
some in several editions — at dates extending from 1597 to IG'22. These are what are 
commonly spoken of as tJie quarto editions. 

Jolin Heminge and Henry Condell were amongst the "principal actors" of the playa 
of Shakspere, according to a list prefixed to their edition. In 1C08 they were share- 
holders with Shakspere in the Blackfriars Theatre. In his will, in 1G16, they are 
honourably recognized in the following bequest — "To my fellows, John Heniyngo, 
Richard Burbage, and Henry Condell, twenty-sbc shillings eight-pence apiece, to buy 
them rings." In 1G19, after the death of Shakspere and Burbagc, they were at the 

head of their remaining " fellows." 


XOTICE OF THK ( iKK UN Al. KDli'luN.S OV THE PLAYS. first folio edition is dodicated to the Earl of Pembroke and the Earl of Mont- 
gon.ery. The two friends and fellows of Shakspere, in an Address " to the great variety 
of rt-aden,," use very remarkahle words:— "It had been a thing, we confess, worthy to 
have been wishe.1, that the author himself had lived to have set forth and overseen his 
nwn writiugs. But since it hath been ordained otherwise, and he, by death, departed 
from that right, we pray you do not envy his friends the office of their care and pain to 
have collected and published them ; and so to have published them, as where, before, 
you were abused with divers stolen and surreptitious copies, maimed and deformed by 
the frauds and stealths of injurious impostors that exposed them,— even those are now 
..ffen-d to your view cured, and perfect of their limbs ; and all the rest, absolute in their 
„arnl,.>t^, as he conceived them ; who, as he was a happy imitator of Nature, was a most 
gentle cxpresscr of it. //m mind and hand went together; and what he thought, he uttered 
irith thntraMnfis that we have scarce received from him a blot in his 2Ja2)ers ." 

That the editors of Shakspere were held to perform an acceptable service to the world 
hy this publication, we may judge from some of the verses prefixed to the edition. Ben 
Jon.son'8 celel)rated poem, " To the ^lemory of my beloved the Author, jNfr. William 
.Shakespeare : and what he hath left us," follows the preface, and it concludes with these 

lines :— 

"Shino forlli, then star of poets, and with rage, 
Or influence, chide, or cheer, the drooping stage ; 
Which, since thy flight from hence, hath mourn'd like niglit. 
And despairs day, but/or thy rolume's light." 

Anothor poem in the same volume, by Leonard Digges, is in the same tone : — 

" .Shake-speare, at length th)/ pious fellows give 
Tilt icorlil thy woris ; thy works by which outlive 
Thy tomb thy name must. When that stone is rent. 
And time dissolves thy Stratford monument, 
Jlero we alivo shall view thee still. This book, 
Wlien brass and marble fade, shall make thee look 
Fresh to all ages." 

'n»n edition of 1623 secured from a probable destruction, entire or partial, some of 
the noblest monuments of Shakspere's genius. The poet had been dead seven years 
when this edition was printed. Some of the plays which it preserved, through the 
me<liuni of the, had been written a considerable period before his death. We 
hiive not a single manuscript Hue in existence, written, or supposed to be written, by 
Shnk.<|X'n'. If, from any notions of exclusive advantage as the managers of a company, 
H<>minge and Condell had not printed thi.s edition of Shakspere, — if the publication 
had heon suspencU'd fnr U'U, or at most for fifteen, years, till the civil wars broke out, 
and the predominance of the puritanical spirit had shut up the theatres, — the probability 
is that all Shakspere's manuscripts would have perished, ^\^lat then should we have 
lo<«t, which will now remain when "brass and marble fade !" We will give the list of 



those plays which, as far as any edition is known, were piintiMl for tht- hiai uui< in llio 
folio of 1G23 :— 

CoUEDli'ZS . 

TLe Tempest. 

The Two Geiitleuii'ii ot' \'t ruiia. 

Me.-wure fur Me.isuif. 

The Comedy of Errors. 

A 8 You Like it 

The Tumiiii? of the Shrew. 

All's Well that Ends Well. 

Twelfth Night. 

The Wiuter's Tule. 


Thackdii:.s . .< 

King John. 

Houry VI., Part I 

Heury VI 11. 


Tiinoii i.f Athuiia. 

Juliu« C'u;iuir. 


Antony and Cleoi»ttr;t. 


In udJitiou to the eighteen plays thus recited, which were lii-st printed in the folio, 
there were four otlier plays there first printed in a perfect shaiKi. Of the fourteen 
ComfdUs, nine first appeared in that edition. Between the quarto editions of the ft>ur 
Comedies, — " Love's Labour 's Lost," " A Midsummer Night's Dream," " The Mercliant 
of Venice," "Much Ado about Nothing," — and the folio of 1623, the variations an- 
exceedingly few ; and these have probably, for the most part, l>een created by the 
printer. "The Merry Wives of Windsor" — of the quarto edition of wlii.h, in 1G02 
and in 1619, we shall give a more jiarticular account in our notice of that play — iji a 
very incomplete sketch of the Comedy which first appeared in a perfect shape in tin- 
edition of 1623. 

The second edition of 1632 was held up lus an authority by Steevens, Ijecause, in some 
ilegree, it appeared to fall in with his notions of versification. Wo doubt if it had an 
editor properly so called ; for the most obvious typographical errors are repeated without 
change. The printer, probably, of this edition occasionally piered out what lie con- 
sidered an imperfect line, and altered a word here and there that had grown obsolete 
during the changes in our language since Shaksjiere first wrote, liut, beyond this, wo 
have no help in the second edition ; and none whatever in the subsequent ones. For 
eighteen plays, therefore, the folio of 1623 must be received as the only accredit.Ki copy 
— standing in the same relation to the text as the one manuscript of an ancient author. 
For four other plays it must be received as the only accredited complete copy. 

The folio of 1623 contains thirty-six plays: of these, thirteen were published in tlio 
author's lifetime, with such intermd evidences of authenticity, and under such circum- 
stances, as warrant us in receiving them as authentic copies. These copies are, therefore, 
entitled to a very high respect in the settlement of the author's text But they do not 
demand an exclusive respect;- for the evidence, in several in.stances, is most decided, 
that the author's posthumous copies in manuscript were distinguished from the printed 
copies by verbal alterations, by additions, by omissions not arbitrarily madci, by a more 
correct metrical arrangement To refer these differences to alterations made by the 
players, has been a favourite theory with some of Shakspere's editors ; but it is mani- 
festly an absurd one. We see, in numerous cases, the minute but most cfreclivc touchen 



of the skilful artist ; and a careful examination of this matter in the plays where tlie 
ultcratious are most numerous, is quite sufficient to satisfy us of the jealous care with 
which Shakspere watched over the more important of these productions, so as to leave 
with his "fellows" more complete and accurate copies than had been preserved by 
the prcKH. 

The order iu which the Comedies are presented in the folio of 1623 is as follows : — 

Tlio Tcm|)ert. 

The Two Gentlemen of Verona. 

The MtiTj- Wivca of Windsor 

Measure for Mensurc. 

The Comedy of Errors. 

Much Ado about Nothing. 

Love's I^diour '« Lost. 

Midsummer Night's Dream. 

The Merchant of Venice. 

As You Like It. 

The Taming of the Shrew. 

All 's Well that Ends Well. 

Twelfth Night, or What You Will. 

The Winter's Tale. 

In the 'Pictorial Edition' we have endeavoui-cd, to the best of our judgment, to 
nrrango the Comedies and Tragedies according to the evidence of the dates of their 
comi)osition. V.^- 7Ti-tories follow the Chronology of the several Reigns. 

Wo iuhjoin a Chronological Tahle of Shakspere 'a Plays, which we have constructed with some care, 
►howing the posilive facts which determine d,xtes previous to which they were produced. 


Henry VI. T'nrt I AUiidcd lo by Nasli, in ' Pierce PeniiiUssc,' 1592 

llcnry VI. I'na II Printed a* llic ' Pirst Part of the Cimienlion ' 1594 

llrnrv VI. Pari III Printed as ' The True Tragedy of Ricliard, Duke of York ' 1595 

lllcli.rd tl Printed 1597 

Kirh»r.| III Printed 1597 

R„ ■ Printed 1597 

U 't Punted „ 1598 

Ifr,. ... .....I Printed 1598 

Hrnry IV. Part II Printed 1600 

llcM'. V .. Printed 1600 

Mr <) Printed 16U0. Mentioned liy Meres 1598 

Ml ■■ Drcniu. Printed IGOO. Mentioned bv Meres 1598 

M ;■ ... Printed 1600 

A< ... Kiitcred at Stationer's Hall 1600 

Al 'licU. III! ' to be mentioned by Meres as ' Love's Labour '.s Won' 1598 

T» Verona... Mentioned bv Mep-s 1598 

C. .Mentioned by Mercs 1598 

K Miiitionrd by Mereg 1598 

Tl- Printed 1600 

Mctf) VVuMof WinU»ur ... Printed 1602 

lUfTiIfi . Printed 1603 

r« V' 't Arte<i in tbe Middle Temple Hall 1602 

fH Acted .It llnrefi.ld 1«02 

M' ' :ic Arlcd ..t Wl.iiclinll 1C04 

l^ Printed 1(U8 Acted at Wliilehall 1607 

Tui f'W Sup|•o^ed to linve been acted at Henslowe's Theatre. i593. Entered 

nt Stnllnner's Hall 1607 

TrnM-(» »n>l TreMlda Printed inOO. Previnuslv acted at Couit 1609 

|v Printed '..... 1609 

Tl Acted nl Wbileball 1611 

Ih.- .. - -.Tal« Acted at Wbitchall 1611 

lUnr; VIII Acted aa a new play when the Globe was burned 1613 

Oul of the thirty ««ven riayit of ShnkHpere the dates of thirty-one are thus to some extent fixed in 

r;v.. In .re, of cotmc, to ln! modified by other circumst.ances. There are only six plays 

r- • , .• .. - ... < » are not thus limited by publication, by the notice of contemporaries, or by the 

their p«rform«nccii; and theac certainly belong to the poet's latter period. They 


th. I Julius CaRsar. 

■line. I Antony and Cleopalia. 

.1 of Athcni. I Coriolanus. 


1 1 

State of tue Tkxt, and Cukonology, of tu-e Two Gentlemen or YenoNA. 

We have seen, from the list previously given, that this comedy waa originally printed in the fin>l 
folio. The text is uiugularly correct. 

In the edition of 1623, the Two Gentlemen of Verona appears the second in the collection of 
" Comedies." The Tempest, which it can 8C;ircely bo doviljted was one of Shiiksperc's liitost pliiyn, pre- 
cedes it. The amiugement of that edition, except in the three divisions of " Comedies, JliHti.riec, and 
Tragedies," and in the order of events in the " Histories," is quite arbitrary. It is extreuuly difficult, 
if not impossible, to fix a precise date to many of Shakspere's plays ; and the reasons which Malone, 
Chalmers, auil Drake have given for the determining of an exact chrouolo;<i('al order (in whiilj they 
each differ), are, to our minds, in most instances, unsatisfactory. In the instance before «i«, Malone 
originally ascribed the play to the year 1595, because the lines which we shall have ocuision afterwards 
to notice, — 

" Some, to the wars, to try tlieir fortunes tlicre ; 
Some, to discover islands fur away;" — 

ho thought had reference to Elisuibeth's military aid to Henry IV., and to Raleigh's expedition to 
Guiana. He has sub.scqucntly fixed the date of it^ being writtou as 1591, because there was an 
expedition to France under Essex in that year. The truth is, as we shall shew, that the excitements of 
military adventure, and of maritime discovery, had become the most familiar objects of ambition, 
from the period of Shakspere's first arrival in London to nearly the end of the century. The other 
arguments of Malone for placing the dat« of this play in 1591, appear to us as little to be regarded. 
They are, that the incident of Valentine joining the outlaws has a resemblance to a passjigo in 
Sidney's Arcadia, which was not published till 1590 ; — that there are two allusions to the story of 
Hero and Lcander, which he thinks were suggested by Marlowe's poem on that subject; and that there 
is also an allusion to the story of Phaeton, which Steevens thinks Shakspere derived from the old play 
of King John, printed in 1591. All this is really very feeble conjecture, and it is absolutely all that 
is brought to shew an exact date for this play. The incident of Valentine is scarcely a coincidence, 
compared with the story in the Arcadia ; — and if Shakspere knew nothing of the classical fables from 
direct sources (which it is always the delight of the commentators to, every palace and 
mansion was filled with Tapestry, in which the subjects of Hero and Lcander, and of Phaeton, were 
constantly to be found. Malone, for these and for no other reasons, thinks the Two Gentlemen of 
Verona was produced in 1591, when its author was twenty-seven years of age. But he thinks, at the 
same time, that it was Shakspere's first I'lay. 

Sdi'Poskd Soduce of TiiF. Plot. 

A charge which has been urged against Shakspere, with singular comjtlaocncy on thf< {wrt of thf 
accusers, is, that he did not invent his plots. A recent writer, who in these later days has thought 
that to disparage Shakspere would be a commendable task, says, " If Shakspere had little of what the 
world calls learning, he had less of invention, so far as regards the fable of his plays For every one 
of them he was, in some degree, indebted to a preceding piece." • Wo do not mention tliis writer as 
attaching any value to his opinions; but simply because he has contrived to put in a small compans 
all that could be raked together, in depreciation of Shakspere as a poet and as a man. The assertion 
that the most incentive of poets was without invention "as far as regards the fable of his play"," 
is as absurd v^ to say that Scott did not inv.-nt tlio fable of Konilworth, because the sod tale of Amy 

• Life of Shakspere in I.ardner'> Cyclop»dl». 


Rcib«art in found in Mickle'a beautiful ballad of "Cumnor Hall." The truth is, that no one can 
properly appreciate the extent as well as the subtlety of Shakspere's invention— its absorbing and 
[lur'ify'iuir jK)\ver — who ba« not traced him to his sources. It will be our duty, in many cases, to direct 
M)I>ecial attfutiou to the material upon which Shakspere worked, to shew how the rough ore became, 
under bis lurndfi, pure and resplendent — converted into something above all price by the unapproachable 
nkill of the artiiit. It U not the workman polishiug the diamond, but converting, by his wonderful 
alchemy, hom.lhiag of small value into the diamond. It is, in a word, precisely the same process by 
which the unhewn block of marble is fabricated into the perfect statue : the statue is within the 
nurbltf, but the Phidiaii calls it forth. The student of Shakspere will understand that we here more 
f«rticularly allude to the great plays which are founded on previous imaginative works, such as Romeo 
and Juliet, anil Lear; and not to those in which, like the Two Gentlemen of Verona, a few incidents 
are borrowed from the romance writers. 

"But what shall we do?" said the liarber in Don Quixote, when, with the pi-iest, the house- 
keeper, and the niece, he was engaged in making bonfire of the knight's library — " what shall we 
do with the»o little books that remain?" "These," said the priest, "are probably not books of 
cbiralry, but of poetry." And opening one, he found it was the Diana of George Montemayor, and 
•aid (believing all the rest of the sanjo kind), "These do not deserve to be burnt like the rest, 
for they QUinot do the mischief that these of chivalry have done : they are works of genius and 
fancy, and do nobody any hurt." Such was the criticism of Cervantes upon the Diana of Monte- 
mayor. The romaii'^o was the most popular which had appeared in Spain since the days of Amadis 
do Oaul ; * and it was translated into English by Bartholomew Yong, and published iu 1598. The 
•tory involves a perpetual confusion of modern manners and ancient mythology ; and Ceres, 
Minerva, and Venus, as well as the saints, constitute the machinery. The one part which Shak- 
upcre ha» borrowed, or is supposed to have bori'owed, is the story of the shepherdess Felismena, 
which is thus trjui.slatcd by Mr. Dunlop : — "The first part of the threats of Venus was speedily 
accomplished ; and, my fiither having early followed my mother to the tomb, I was left an orphan. 
I Hcnc'-forth I resided at the house of a distimt relative ; and, having attained my seventeenth year, 
became the victim of the olTended goddess, by falling iu love with Don Felix, a young nobleman of 
the province in which I lived. The object of my affections felt a reciprocal passion; but his father, 
' having learned the attachment which subsisted between us, sent his son to court, with a view to 
I prevent our union. Soon after his departure, I followed him in the disguise of a page, and dis- 
I covered on the night of my arrival at the capital, by a seranade I heard him give, that Don Felix 
liml alrca/Iy dispo.ied of his affections. Without being recognised by him, I was admitted into his 
and wft- 1 by my fonner lover to conduct his correspondence with the mistress who, 

ir ncpara' i ftupplanted me in his heart." 

TliU apcciea of incident, it ia truly observed by Steevens, and afterwards by Dunlop, is found in 
many of the ancient novels. In Twelfth Night, where Shakspere is supposed to have copied 
Baniictio, the name adventure occurs ; but in that delightful comedy, the lady to whom the page in 
di«Ktit*« in sent, fallo iu love with him. Such is the story of Felismena. It is, however, clear that 
ShakM|>ere mu«t have known this part of the Romance of Montemayor, although the translation of 
Yr<r r M.i p\ibliMhc'l til! 1593; for the pretty dialogue between Julia and Lucetta, in the first 

•ct. i'llia upbniicU her servant for bringing the letter of Proteus, corresponds, even to some 

luma of cxprcMion, with a similar description by Felismena, of her love's history. We give a pas- 
M«fo from the oM trnnnlation by Bartholomew Yong, which will enable our readers to compare the 
noni^-' !»er and the dramatist : — 

' "le occa.«ion I miifht prevnilc, I saide unto liei — And is it so, Rosiiia, that Don Felix, 

■"'• ■ d»rci write unto mcf These are thing.i, mistresse (saide she demurely to me again), 

th»« »rc •• iridml to lo»c. whcrcfnrc, I beiccch you, p.irdon me; for if I had thought to have angered you with 

It. I won:: it pullrd out the ball of mine eic». Ilow cold my h.irt was at tliat blow, God knowes; yet did I dis- 

Mmbk the maltrr, and tutfrr tnytclf to remain that night only with my desire, and with occasion of little s-leepe."— (p. 55.) 

Thoae who are curious to trace this subject further, may find all that Shakspere is supposed to 
hn\e borrcjwod from Montemayor, in the third volume of " Shakspeare Illustrated," by Mrs. 

• Dunlop'3 History of Fiction. 


Lenox. Wt- Lave compared this lady's trauslatiou of the passages with tliat of Bortholotuew Yi'iig, 
The substance is con-ectly given, though her verbal alterations ore not iniproveuienlA of tho quaint 
prose of the times of Elizabeth. 

The writer in Lanlner'a Cyclopaedia, whom we have been already compelled to mention, says, 
"The Two GeutUmen of Verona (a very poor drama), is indebted for ma»iy of its incid<itt.i to two 
works — the Arcadia of Sidney, and the Diana of Montemayor." This writer had neither taken 
the trouble to examine for himself, nor to report correctly wiuit others hail siiid who hatl exnniiued. 
The single incident in Sidney's Arca^lia which bears tho eliyhtest resemblance to the story of the 
Two Gentlemen of Verona, is where Pyrocles, one of the two heroes of the Arcatlia, is compelled 
to become the Ciiptaiu of a band of people called Helots, who had revolted! from the Lace^Iemonians ; 
and this is supposed to have given origin to the thoroughly Italian incident of Valentine being 
compelled to become the captain of the outlaws. The English travellers in Italy, in the time of 
Shakspere, wei-e perfectly familiar with banditti, often headed by daring adventurers of good family. 
Fynes Moryson, who tr.ivoUed between Rome and Naples in 1594, has described a band ln-aded by 
" the nephew of the Cardinal Cajet^mo." We may, therefore, fairly leave tho uninventive Shakspere 
to have found his outlaws in other narratives than that of the Arcadia- With regard to the Diana 
of Montemayor, we have st.'ited the entii-e imiouut of the author of the Two Gentlemen of 
Verona is supposed to have borrowed from it. 

Period ok tujs Action, and Manners. 

Amongst the objections which Dr. Johnson, in the discharge of his critical oflBce, api>eara to have 
thought it his duty to raise against every play of Shakspere, he says, with regard to the plot of this 
[ilay, " he jjlaces the emperor at Milan, and sends his young men to attend him, but never mentions 
him more." As the emperor had nothing whatever to do with the story of tho Two Genilemeu of 
Veron.i, it was quite unnecessarj* that Shakspere should mention him more; and the mention of 
him at all was only demanded by a poetical law, which Shakspere well undei-stood, by which the 
introduction of a f»^w definite circumstances, either of time or place, is sought for. to take the conduct 
of a story, in ever so small a degree, out of the region of generalization, and, by so doing, invest it 
with some of the attributes of reality. The poetical value of this single line — 

" Attends the emperor 'n his royal court,"* 

can only be felt by those who desire to attach precise images to the descriptions which poetry seeks 
to put before the mind, and, above all, to the incidents which dramatic poetry endeavours to group 
and embody. Had this line not occurred in the play before us, we should have had a very vague 
idea of the scenes which are here presented to us ; and, as it if, the poet has left just such an 
amount of vagueness as is quite compatible with the free conduct of his plot He is not here 
dramatizing history. He does not undertake to bring before us the 6erce struggles for the real 
sovereignty of the Milanesie between Francis I. and the Emperor Charles V., while Francesco Sf..rzn. 
the Duke of Milan, held a precarious and disputed authority. He does not pretend to tell un of 
the dire calamities, the subtle intrigues, and the wonderful reverses which preceded the complete 
subjection of Italy to the conqueror at Pavia. He does not shew us the unhappy condition of Milan, 
in 1529, when, according to Guicciardini, the poor people who could not buy provisions at the 
exorbitant prices demanded by the governor died in the streets,— when the greatt-r number of tho 
nobility fled from the city, and those who remained were miserably poor,— and when the most 
frequented places were overgrown with gross, nettles, and brambles. He gives us a peaceful period, 
when courtiers talked lively« in the duke's saloons, and serenaded their mistresses in the duke'a 
courts. This state of things might have existed during the short period between the treaty of Cam 
bray, in 1529 (when Francis I. gave up all claims to Milan, and it became a fief of the empire under 
Charles V.), and the death of Francesco Sforza in 1535; or it might have existed at an earlier 

• Art I. Srciie III 


period m the life of Sfor/a, when, after the battle of Pavia, he was restored to the dukedom of 
ililan; or when, in 1525, he received a formal investiture of his dignity. All that Shakspere 
attemptf-d to define was iome period when there was a Duke of Milan holding his authority in a 
1,'reater or lesa degree under the emperor. That period might have been before the time of Francesco 
Sforza. It could not have been after it, because, upon the death of that prince, the contest for the 
««verci;,'nty of the Milanese was renewed between Francis I. and Charles V., till, in 1540, Charles 
inveiitvd hia son Philip (afterwards husband of Mary of England) with the title, and the separate 
I UuDoura of a Duke of Milan became merged in the imperial family. 

I Tho one biBtorical fuct, then, mentioned in this play, is that of the emperor holding his court at 

I I Milan, which woa under the government of a duke, who was a vassal of the empire. Assuming 

' that this fact prescribes a limit to the period of the action, we must necessarily place that period 

at Icwit half a century before the d.ite of the composition of this drama. Such a period may, or 
I may not, have been in Shak-^pere's mind. It was scarcely necessary for him to have defined the 

I |>crio<l for the purpose of m;d:ing his play more intelligible to his audience. That was all the 

[ purpone ho had to accomplish. He was not, as we have said before, teaching history, in which 

' he had to aim at all tho exactness that was compatible with the exercise of his dramatic art. He 

i I 

I bad bore, oa in many other cases, to tell a purely romantic story ; and all that he had to provide 

I ' for with reference to what is called costume, in the largest sense of that word, was that he should 

I ! not put his characters in any positions, or conduct his story through any details, which should run 

i-ounter to tho actual knowledge, or even to the conventional opinions of his audience. That thin 
wiU) tho theory upon which he worked as an artist we have little doubt ; and that he carried this 
' theory oven into wilful anachronisms we are quite willing to believe. He saw, and we think 

correctly, that there was not less real impropriety in making the ancient Greeks .speak English 
than in making the same Greeks describe the maiden "in shady cloister mew'd," by the modern 
nnmo of a nun.* He had to translate the ima-es of the Gi-eeks, as well as their language, into 
forinn of words that an uncritical English audience would appi'ehend. Keejiing this principle in 
view, whenever we meet with a commentator lifting up his eyec in astonishment at the prodigious 
I \ ignorance of Shakspere, with regard to geography, and chronology, and a thousand other proprie- 

ties, to which the empire of poeti-y has been subjected by the inroads of modern accuracy, we 
picture to ourselves a far different being from the rude workman which their pedantic demonstrations 
have figured aa tho bcaii. ideal of the greatest of poets. We see the most skilful artist employing 
his materials in the precise mode in which he intended to employ them; displaying as much know- 
ledge as he intended to display ; and, after all, committing fewer positive blunders, and incurang 
f«-wer violation* of accuracy, than any equally prolific poet before or after him. If we compare, 
for example, the violations of historical truth on tlie part of Shak.spei'e, who lived in an age when 
all history cime dim and dreamy before the popular eye, and on the part of Sir Walter Scott, who 
livwl in an n^-e when all history was reduced to a tabular exactness — if we compare the great 
dramatist and the novelist in this one point alone, we shall find that the man who belongs to 
the age of occurncy ia many degrees more inaccurate than the man who belongs to the age of fable. 
There in, in truth, a philosophical point of view in which we must seek for the solution of those 
omfrndictions of what is real and probable, which, in Shakspere, his self-complacent critics are 
i»lwayn delighted to refer to hi.s ignorance. One of their greatest discoveries of his geographical 
itcnorance is furnished in this play :— Proteus and his servant go to Milan by water. It is perfectly 
true that Verona is inland, and that even the river Adige, which waters Verona, does not take 
lU course by Milan. Shak.spere, therefore, wiis most ignorant of geography ! In Shakspere's 
<Uy« countrica were not so exactly mapped out as in our own, and therefore he may, from lack of 
knowledge, have made a boat sail from Verona, and have given Bohemia a sea-board. But let it 
U »«>rne in mind that, in nutnberlesa other instances, Shakspere has displayed the most exact 
acquAJntonce with what wo call geography— an acquaintance not only with the territorial boundaries, 
and tho physical features of particular countries, but with a thousand nice peculiarities con- 
Docte.1 with their government nnd cu.'itomH, which nothing but the most diligent reading and 
inquiry could furnish. Is there not, therefore, another solution of the ship at Verona, and the 
sea-boarri of Doheiuia, than .Sh-ik^pere's ignorance? Might not his knowledge have been in 

• MiUsunimer Ni;:ht*» Dream. 


Fubjection to what he reqnire<1, or fnuciud he required, for the conduct of his dniuiatio iiioi-UiiUt I 
Why does Scott make the murder of a BUhop of Lifge, by William do la Marck, the groat cause of 
the quarrel between Charles the Bold and Louis XL, to revenge which munler the corabine<l forces of 
Burgundy and France stormed the city of Lie^'e, — when, at the period of the iuBurrection of the 
Liegeois described in Quentin Durward, no Williiun de la Marck waa upon the rejil scene, and the 
murder of a Bishop of Liege by him took phico fourteen yeai-s afterwards ? No one, we suppose, 
imputes this inaccuracy to historical ignorance m Scott. He was writing a romance, we say, and he 
therefore thought fit to sacrifice historical truth. The real question, in all these cases, to be iu»ked, in, 
Has the writer of imagiu:ition gained by the violation of propriety a full equivalent for what lie hat 
lost ? In the case of Shakspere we are not to determine this question by a reference to the actual 
fitii^e of populr.r knowledge in our time. Wlmt startles us as a violation of propriety was received by 
the audience of Shakspere as a fact, — or, \va.< nearer the poefs mind, the fact was held by the 
audience to be in subjection to the fable which he sought to present ; — the world of reality lived in a 
larger world of art ; — art divested the real of its formal shapes, and made its hard masses plastic. In 
our own days we have lost the power of surrendering our understanding, spell-bound, to the witchery 
of the dramatic poet. We cannot sit for two hours enchained to the one scene which equally 
represents Verona or Milan, Rome or London, and ask no aid to our senses beyond what the poet 
supplies us in his dialogue. We must now have changing scenes, which carry us to new localitien; 
and pauses to enable us to comprehend the time which has elap.^ed in the progress of the action ; and 
appropriate dresses, that we may at once distinguish a king from a peasant, and a Roman from a 
Greek. None of these aids had our ancestors ; — but they had what wo have not — a thorough love of 
the dramatic art in its highest range, and an appreciation of its legitimate authority. Wherever the 
wand of the enchanter waved, there were they ready to come within his circle and to be mute. They 
did not ask, as we have been accustomed to ask, for happy Lears and un metaphysical Hamlets. They 
were content to weep scalding tears with the old king, when his " poor fool was hanged," and to 
speculate with the unresolving prince even to the extremest depths of his subtlety. They did not 
i-equire tragedy to become a blustering melodrame, or comedy a pert farce. They could endure 
poetry and wit — they understood the alternations of movement and repose. We have, in our 
character of audience, become degraded even by our advance in many appliances of civiliaition with 
regard to which the audiences of Shakspere were wholly ignorant. We know many small things 
exactly, which they were content to leave unstudied ; but we have lost the perception of many grand 
I and beautiful things which they received instinctively and without effort. They had great artists 

working for them, who knew that the ninge of thiir art would carry them far beyond the hard, dry, 
literal copying of every-day Nature which we call Art ; and they laid down their shreds and patches 
of accurate knowledge as a tribute to the conquerors who came to subdue them to the dominion of 
imagination. What cared they, then, if a ship set sail from Verona to Milan, when Valentine and hi.i 
man ought to have departed in a carnage ; — or what mattered it if Hamlet went " to school at 
Wittemberg," when the real Hamlet was in being five centuries before the imiversity of Wittemberg 
was founded ! If Shakspere had lived in this ago, he mi^ht have looked more carefully into his maps 
and his encyclopaedias. W'e might have gained something, but what should we not have lost I 

We have been somewhat wandering from the immediate subject before us ; but we considered it 
right, upon the threshold of our enterprise, to make a profession of faith with regnrfl to what many 
are accustomed to consider irredeemable violations of propriety in Sliak.spere. We believe the time is 
passed when it can afford any satisfaction to an Englishuian to hear the greatest of our poets 
perpetually held up to ridicule as a sort of inspired barbarian, who worked without method, and 
wholly without learning. But before Shikspere can be properly understood, the popular mind must 
be led in an direction ; and we must all learn to regard him, as he really was, as the roost 
consummate of artists, who had a complete and absolute control over all the materials and instruments 
of his art, without any subordination to mere impulses and caprices, — with entire self-possession and 
perfect knowledge. 

" Shakspere," says Malone, "is fond of alluding to events occurring at the time when he wrote ;"* 
and John.son observes that many passages in his works evidently shew that " he often took advantage 
of the facts then recent, and the passions then in motion."t This was a part of the >.-i''. '/ <>r 

• Life, vol. U. p. 331. edit. 1821. Safe on KInu John. 



Shttk-spere, by which he fixed the attention of his audience. The Nurse in Romeo and Juliet, says, 
" It IB now since the earthquake eleven yeai-s." Dame Quickly, in the Merry Wives of Windsor, talks 
of her "kiiightri, and lords, and geiitlemeu, with their coaches, I warrant you, coach after coach." 
Coivcbe* came into general use about 1C05. " Banks's horse," which was exhibited iu Loudon in 1589, 
is mentioDcd in Love's Labour 's Lost. These, amongst many other instances which we shall have 
occmuun to notice, are not to be regarded as determining the period of the dramatic action ; and, 
indec-d, thi-y are, in many cases, decided anachronisms. In the Two Gentlemen of Verona, there are 
Miveral very curious and interesting passages which have distinct reference to the times of Elizabeth, 
and wbicbf if Milan had then been under a separate ducal government, would have warranted us in 
I ' 'ho action of this play about half a century later than we have done. As it is, the passages 

.;kabic examples of Shiik.-^pere's close attention to "facts then recent;" and they shew us that 
the .tpirit of enterprise, and the intellectual activity which distinguished the period when Shakspere 
Jintl b«j,'an to write for the stage, found a reflection in the allusions of this accurate observer. We 
Uavo notctl these circumstancea more particularly in our Illustrations ; but a rapid enumeration o 
theta may Dot bo unprofitable. 

Id the scene between Antonio and Panthino, where the father is recommended to "put forth" his 
son "to seek prefcnncnt," we have a brief but most accurate recapitulation of the stirring objects that 
called forth the energies of the master-spirits of the court of Elizabeth : — • 

" Some, to the wars, to try their fortune there : 
Some, to discover island!) far away; 
Sonic, to the studious universities " 

ll'i"', m llircc lines, we have a recital of the great iiriuciples that, either separately, or more 
iVi-'pientiy in combination, gave their impidses to tlie ambition of an Essex, a Sidney, a Raleigh, and a 
Dnvkc : — War, still conducted in a chivalrous spirit, though with especial reference to the " prefer- 
nieut" of the soldier; — Discovery, impelled by the raj)id development of the commercial resources of 
the nation, and carried on in a temjier of enthusiasm which was prompted by extraordinary success 
and extravagant hope ; — and Knowledge, a thirst for which had been excited throughout Europe by 
tho prugrcaii of the Rcformatiou and the invention of printing, which opened the stores of learning 
f' ' ' '11 uii-ii. ThtMO pursuits had succeeded to the fierce and demorali/Jug passions of our long 
: , and tlio more terrible contentions that had accompanied the great change in the national 
rvliRtoD. Tho nation h.'wl at length what, by comparison, was a settled Government. It could 
•ly he said to be at war; for the assistance which Elizabeth afforded to the Hugonots in France, 
..;. ; t'j those who fought for freedom of conscience and for independence of Spanish dominion iu the 
Nvtlicrlands, gave a healthy Htimulus to the soldiers of fortune who drew their swords for Henry of 
Niir»m) and Maurice of Nassau ;— and though the English people might occasionally lament the fate 
of some brftv«! and acconipliohcd leader, as they w<-pt for the death of Sidney at Zutpheu, there was 
little of gcMcnd Hutfc-ring tiiat might make them look upon those wars as anything more to be dreaded 
than some well-fought tournament. Shakspere, indeed, has not forgotten the connexion between the 
fields whcro honour and fortune were to be won by wounds, and the knightly lists where the game of 
mimic war woa still played upon a magnificent scale; where the courtier might, without personal 

" PractUe tilt< and tournaments," 

•■•■foro his queen, who sat in lier " fortress of perfect beauty," to witness the exploits of the " foster- 

■'' ■' ' ' ' '■ •'•"''■ "««on " fired with perfumed powder," and " moving mounts 

111' ••«."• 

There was another circumstance which marked the active and inquiring character of these days, 
which Shakflporc has noticc<l : 

" Home keeping youths have ever homely wits," 

'^KcUims Valentine ; and P.uithiDo says of Proteus, it 

" Would be Kfest impeachment to his age 
In having known no travel in his youth " 

• Sec Illustrations to Aci !. 


Travelling was the passion of Shakspei*e'a times — the exeittJineiit of those who dij uot iip«ci«)ly 
devote themselves to war, or discovery, or learning. Tlie (^'eneral praetii-e of trav' " 
amongst many proofs, that the iiatiou was growing conunercial and rich, and that . _ . 

wna spread amongst the higher classes, which made it " impeachment " to their age uot to bavi< 
lookeil upon foreign lands in their season of youth and activity. 

The nihisions which we thus find in this comoily to the pursuits of the gallant opirita of the 
court of Eliziibeth are very marked. The incidental notices of the general condition of the people 
are less decided ; but a few passages that have reference to popular manners may bo pointed out. 

The boyhood of Siiakspero was p.isscd in a country town where the practices of the Catholic 
church had not been wholly eradicted either by severity or reason. We have one or two paaming 
notices of these. Proteus, in the first scene, says, 

" I will bo thy lU'adsni.iii, V«k'nline." 

Shakspero had, doubtless, seen the rosary still worn, and the " beads bidden," perhaj)* even in 
his own house. Julia compares the strength of her afliction to the unwearied steps of " tlio 
tnie-devoted pilgrim." Shak,-;pere had, perhap.s, heard tbe tale of some ancient di-nizen of n 
ruined abbey, who had made the pilgrimage to the shriuo of our Lady at Lorotto, or had even 
visited the sacred tomb at Jerusalem. Thurio and Prott^us are to meet at "Saint (iregoiy's 
well." This is the only instance in Shakspere in which a holy well is mentioned; but Ji'.w 
often must he have seen the country people, in the early summer morning, or after tlieir daily 
labour, resorting to tbe fountain which had been hallowed from the Saxon times as untler tlic 
guardian influence of some venerated saint. These wells wore clo.sed and neglected in London 
when Stowe wrote ; but at the beginning of the last century, the cu8t<iin of nuiking journeys t.. 
them, according to Bourne, still existed among the people of the North ; and he considers it to l»o 
" the remains of that superstitious practice of the Papists of paying adoration to wells and 
founUins." This play contains sever.d indications of the prevailing taste for music, anil exhibitJt 
an audience proficient in its technical terms ; for Shakspere never ad-lressed wonls to his hean-rs 
which they could not understand. This taste was a distinguishing characteristic of the age of 
Elizabeth ; it was not extinct in those of the first Charles ; but it was lost amidst the puritiuiism of 
the Commonwealth and the profligacy of the Restoration, and has yet to be born again amongst us. 
There is one allusion in this play to the games of the people — " bid the base,"— which shews us that 
the social sport which the school-boy and school-girl still enjoy,— that of pri-<on base, or prison bam,— 
and which still make the village green vocal with their mirth on some fine evening of spiing, was 
a game of Shakspere's days. In the long winter nights the farmer's hearth was made cheerful by 
the well-known ballads of Robin Hood; and to "Robin Hood's fat friar" Shak8i>ere mokes his 
Itdian outlaws allude. But with music, and sports, and ales, and old wife's stories, there was still 
much misery in the land. " The beggar " not only spake " puling" " at Hallowmas," but his in.por 
tunities or his threats were heard at all seasons. The disease of the country was vagrancy ; and to 
this deep-rooted evil there were only applied the surface remedies to which Launce alludca, " the 
stocks" and " the pillory." The whole nation was still in a stite of transition from somi-Urbarism 
to civilization ; but the foundations of modern society had been laid. The labourers had ceaj^d to 
be vassals; the middle class had been created; the power of the ari^tocnu-y had been humbl.-<l, 
and the nobles had clustered round the sovereign, having cast aside the low UxnWH which lin-l 
belonged to their fierce condition of independent chieftains. This was a stat. in whicli literature 
njight, without degradation, be adapted to the wants of the genertU people; and "the b<«st publi.- 
instructor" then, was the drama. Shakspere found the ta.ste created; but it was for him, m..-t 
especially, to purify and exalt it. 

It is scarcely neccs.sary, perhaps, to caution our readers against imagining th..t because ShaksiKre 
In this, as in all his plays, has some reference to the mannci-s of his own country and times, ho ban 
given a false representation of the manners of the persons whom ho brings uj-on his scene. The 
tone of the Two Gentlemen of Verona is, perhaps, not so thoroughly lUlian as ooma of bis 
later plays-the Merchant of Venice, for example ; but we all along feel that his clmmct^r. *ro 
not English. The allusions to home customs which we have poinU-d out, although crions und 
important as illustrations of the age of Shakspere. are so slight that they scarcely «m«int to any 

* 13 


violation of the moHl Bcrupulous propriety ; and regarded upon that principle which holds th^.i 
in a woj-k of art the exact should he in suhordination to the higher claims of the imaginative, they 
are no violations of propriety at all. 

Scenes and Costume. 

In tho folio of l(J-23, there aro no indications of the localities of the several Scenks. The notices, 
luch a.H " An open Place in Verona, The Garden of Julia's House, A Room in the Duke's Palace, 
A Fore«t near Mantua," are additions that have been usefully made, from time to time. The text, 
either iipooially or by allusion, of course furnishes the authority for these directions. 

The 8ccn>-s which we have illuntrated are the following ; and we shall mention in this, as in all 
other caMfl, the authorities upon which we have founded our designs. 

I. An opal Place in Verona. In this view is seen the ''Piazza della Bra" of P.dladio, which 
WAjj erected about the time of Shakspere ; and, of course, somewhat later than the period we have 
aatigncd to tho dramatic action. An old print in the British Museum has been here copied. 

'2, Rwjm in the Duke's Palace at Milan. This is after a composition by Mr. A. Poynter, 
stri :tly in a-xordance with the arcliitecture of the period. The apartment is supposed to open upon 
k I'l^gia, with a balcony looking over a garden. 

3. Street in Milan. The authorities for this view are, Aspar Veduta di Milano, and Veduta 
doll 0.i[)itale Maggiore, 14.56. The hospital is the large building shewn on the left of the design. 

4. General View of Milan. Braun's Civitates Orbis Terrarum, a very curious work, in six 
folio volumo.i, first printed in 1523, contains a plan of Milan; and an old print in the King's 
Fiibrary baa been partly copied, with some slight picturesque adaptations. 

5. Porett war Manlua. A well-known print after Salvator Rosa has furnished this scene. 

6. Court of the Palace, Milan. This is also after a composition by Mr. A. Poynter, in which ho 
ha* endeavoured to exemplify the Lombard architecture of the sixteenth century. 

7. Abhftj at Milan. This \» a view of the Cloister of Saint Ambrosio, in that city, a building 
existing at the period of the play. It is drawn from an oricrinal sketch. 

Tho ]• ■ ' ■ h tho inrideiita of this play are supposed to have taken place, has been our 

ir"''l« in I "f its Costume It is fixed, as we have previously noticed, by the mention of 

the Emperor holdint? " hia Royal Court" at Milan, while there was a sovereign prince of that 

r duchy. We have therefore chosen our pictorial illustrations from authorities of the 

.. omont of tho sixteenth century; a-s after the death of Francesco Sforza, in 1535, the 

luchy of Milan became an appanage of tho Crown of Spain, and, as such, formed part of the 
dominions of Philip II., huKband of our Queen Mary. 

OiAMxo Vcccllin, tho brother of Titian, in his c\irious work, " Habiti Antiche e Modern! di 
tutto il mon.lo," completed in 1589, presents us with the general costume of the noblemen and 
gentlemen of lUly at tho period we have mentioned, which has been made familiar to us by 
tho woll known portrait!! of the contemporary monarchs, Francis I. and our own Henry VIII, 
He tells us they wore a sort of diadem sunnonntcd by a turban-like cap of gold tissue, or 
•(mbroiderod silk, a plaited shirt low in tho neck with a small band or ruff, a coat or cassock of the 
vlorman fv-ihion. short in tho waist and reaching to the knee, having sleeves down to the elbow, 
and from thenco showing the arm covered only by the shirt with wristbands or rulHes. The cassock 
was omamcntcl with stripes or borders of cloth, silk, or velvet of different colours, or of gold lace 
or embroidery, according to the wealth or taste of the wearer. With this dress they sometimes wore 
doublets and (.tomachpra, or plnecnrda, as they were called, of different colours, their shoes being of 


velvet, like those of the Oermans, thiit is, very broatl at tho toea. Over th»»m ciuuock^ aguiu were 
c-ccAsionally worn clonks or ranntles of Bilk, velvet, or cloth of gold, \vi».li aiujile turn-over oollaia 




of fur or velvet, having Urgo iinu-hulei through which the full puffed sleeves of the C4uw<k-L. pasiMl, 
and sometimes loose hanging sleeves of their own, which could either be worn over the other* or 
thrown behind at pleasure. 





Nicholas Hoghenberg, in his curious series of prints exhibiting the triumphal processions and 
other ceremonies attending the entry of Charles V. into Bologna, a. D. loSO, affords us some 
fine Bpecimens of the co8tisiue at this period, worn by the German and Italian nobles in the 
train of the Emperor. Some are in the cassocks described by Vecellio, others in doublets 
with alanhed hose ; confined both above and below knee by garters of silk or gold. The 
turban headdre«w is worn by the princii>al heiald ; but the nobles generally have caps or bonnets of 
cloth or velvet placed on the side of the head, sometimes over a caul of gold, and ornamented with 
feathers, in some instances profusely. These are most jn-obably the Milan caps or bonnets of 
which we hear so much in wardrobe accounts and other records of the time. They were some- 
times (il-ufhed and \niffcd round the edges, and .'idorned with " points " or " agletts " i.e. tags or aiguilletes. 
Tlie feathers in them, also, were occ.isionally ornamcnte 1 with drops or spangles of g<jld, and jewelled 
np tite quillH. 


Milan wn.i bkewi^o celebrated for its silk hose. In the inventory of the wardrobe of Henry 
Vm., irarician MS8., Nos. 1-J19 and 1420, mention is made of "a pair of hose of purple silk, and 
Venice gold, woven like unto a caul, lined with blue silver sarcenet, edged with a passemain of 
•old, wrought at Milan, and one pair of hose of white silk and gold knits, bought of 
nor." Our readers need scarcely be told that the present term milliner is derived 
from Milan, in consequence of the reputation of that city for its fabrication as well " of weeds of 
f--acc" ail of "hamesw for war;" but it may be necessary to inform them that by at this period 
i-. invariuhly meant breeches or upper stocks, the Hockings, or nether stocks, beginning now to form 
« iK!parate portion of male attire. 

The ladica. we Ic-irn from Vecellio wore the same sort of turbaned head-dress as the men, resplen- 
dent with vario.i • «. and embroidered with gold and silk in the form of rose leaves, and other 
devico* Their ., .ms and t,'ir,lln, were of gold, and of great value. To the latter were 



attached fans of feathers with richly ornaineutod gold handles. Itistend of a veil they wore a iort of 
collar or neckerchief (Bavaro) of lawn or cambric, pinche^l or i)laito<.L The skirta of their gowns were 
usually of damask, either crimson or piiq)le, with a border luce or triumjing round the bottom, » 
quarter of a yard in depth. The sleeves were of velvet or other stuff, laTcje and slashed, so aa to 
shew the liuing or under garment, terminating with a small band or ruflle like thut round the adgtt of 
the collar. The body of the dress was of gold stuff or euibnjidery. Some of the dresM.** wera luada 
with trains which were either held up by tho hand when widking, or attached to the ginlle. The 
head-dress of gold brocade given in one of the plates of Vecellio, is not unlike the benstta of tho Dogo 
of Venice ; and csips very similar in form and material are still worn in the neighbourhood uf Liua 
in Upper Austria. 

The Milan bonnet was also worn by ladies as well as men at this period. Hall, the chrunicler, 
speaks of some who wore "Myllain bonnets of crymosyna sattin drawn through (i.e. «la»hed and 
puffed) with cloth of gold ; " and in the roll of provisions for the marriage of tho daughters of Sir Johu 
Nevil, tempore Henry VIII., the price of "a Millan bonnet, dressed with agletta," is maik«»l 
an lit. 








Simiui I'rout, t.H.A., (tti.\ the tumii of the scaligebs at VEROifA. [J. 4 C. p. NichoUs, sculp. 

Two Gentlemen of Verona. Act :., sc. 1. 


ACT 1. 

SCENE 1. — ,/// oiieu pLtre in Verona. 

Enter Valextixe and Proteus. 

Ful. Cease to persuade, my loving Proteus ; 
Home-keeping youth have ever homely wits ; 
Uer't not aflectiou chains thy tender days 
To the sweet glances of thy honour'd love, 
I rather would entreat thy company, 
To sec the wonders of the world abroad, 
Than, living dully slugjrardiz'd at home, 
Wear out thy youth with sliapdcss idleness. 
But, since thou lov'st, love still, and thrive 

Even as I would, when I to love begin. 
Pro. Wilt thou be gone ? Sweet Valentine, 
adieu ! 
Think on thy Proteus, when thou, hajily, scest 
Some rare note-worthy object in thy travel: 
Wish me partaker in thy happiness. 
When thou dost meet good hap : and in thy 

If ever danger do environ thee. 
Commend thy grievance to my holy prayers, 
For I will be thy bead's-nian, Valentin:^' 

Val. And on a love-book pray for my success ? 
Pro. Upon some book 1 love, 1 '11 pray for 

Fal. That's on some shallow story of deep 
Iluw young Leandcr cross'd tlie Hcllcsp' m 
r 2 

Pro. That 's a deep mmi v ui i ' ! ■ 

For he was more than over bo<>' 

Val. *T is true ; for you arc over boots in lovp, 
And yet you never swoni the Hellespont. 

Pro. Over the boots ? nay, give me not llie 

Val. No, 1 will not, for it boots thee not. 


What ? 

Val. To be in love, wlioro scorn is boiighl 

with groans ; 
Coy looks with heart- j-mic signs ; due luninj,' 

moMU'ul's mirth,' 
With twenty watchful, weary, tedious nights ; 
If haply won, perhaps a ha|' 
If lost, why then a gricvou- . 
However,'' but a folly bought with wit, 
Or else a wit by folly vanquislu d. 

Pro. So, by your eircunistancc, you call nir 


■ Stccvens g\\c% the pasMMce titua :— 

Val. No, I'll nul, fur it Ikiou ihre not. 
Pro. \Vh*i r 

Vnl. T.. I.r 

[n love, V t> 



•• 1 1' 


of ! 


reK <■■ 


■ IibU tilcnlly ii.sUrc i..t; Uil, oi \. 

>> ll'»r-rrr In » h.-i»»oc*eT ««)r. 

I 'J 

Arr I.) 


[Scene I 

Val. So, by your circumstance," I fear, you '11 

Pro. 'T is love you cavil at ; I am not love. 
Fal. Love is your master, for he masters you : 
And he that is so yoked by a fool, 
Methinks should not be chronicled for wise. 

I'ro. Yet writers say, as in the sweetest bud 
The eating canker dwells,' so eating love 
Inhabits in the finest wits of all. 

/'(■//. And writers say, as the most forward 
Is eaten by the canker ere it blow, 
Kvcn so by love the young and tender wit 
fs turn'd to folly; blasting in the l)ud, 
Losing his ** verdure even iu the prime. 
And all the fair elTects of future liopes. 
|{ut wherefore waste I time to counsel thee, 
Tliat art a votary to fond desire ? 
Once more adieu : my father at the road 
Expects my coming, tlierc to sec me shipp'd. 
Pro. And thither will I bring thee, Valentine. 
Val. Sweet Proteus, no ; now let us take our 
To Milan let me hear from thee by letters,'' 
Of thy success in love, and what news else 
Hctideth here in al)senec of thy friend ; 
And 1 likewise will visit (hce with mine. 
Pro. All happiness bechance to thee in Milan ! 
Fal. As much to you at home ! and so, fare- 
well. [foV Valentine 
Pi-o. lie after honour hunts, I after love : 
lie leaves his friends to dignify them more ; 
I leave myself,'' my friends, and all for love. 
Thou, Julia, tiiou hast metamorphos'd me ; 
.Made me neglect my studies, lose my time, 
^Var with grM)d counsel, set the world at nought : 
Made wit with musing weak, heart sick with 

Enter SpKED. 

Sp'rd. Sir Proteus, save you : Saw you my 

master ? 
Pro. But now he parted hence, to embark for 

Speed. Twenty to one then he is shipp'd 

already ; 
Am. I I have played the sheep, in losing him. 

• CircHmttitHC, The word la ii»cd hy the two speaketx 
In dilTrrenl >pimcii. Hr<>lru> rmploy* it in llir niciniiiK of 
(irrumtlnnli,it drducllnn , — V.ilriilinc in n( pnsilinn. 

•> Arconl nu lo mrxlrrn cnn«truciinn, wc slinuld ri'.id iU 
Vrriliirc. In am clalmr.itc note liy Professor Craik, in his 
Talimblc " Phiiolncical Coinnicnta-y on Juliua C.x.sar," he 
ha» clearly shown that " lln w;ii formerly neuter as well 
a* iiiAsrnline, or Ihc irenllive of // as well as of /fe." 

c Tn Mjbn. Let me hear from thee hy letters, ndilreised 
to Milan. Tn is the reading of the lint folio, and has been 
rolorrd lij Malonc. 

<» The original eopy reads, " I love mvjclf." 

Pro. Indeed a sheep dotli very often stray, 
An if the shepherd be awhile away. 

Sjiced, You conclude that my master is a 
shepherd then, and I a sheep ? 

Pro. I do. 

Speed. Why then my horns are his horns, 
whether I wake or sleep. 

Pro. A silly answer, and fitting well a sheep. 

Speed. This proves me still a sheep. 

Pro. True; and thy master a shepherd. 

Speed. Nay, that I can deny by a circumstance. 

Pro. It shall go hard, but 1 '11 prove it by 

Speed. The shepherd seeks the sheep, and not 
the sheep the shepherd ; but I seek- my master, 
and my master seeks not me : therefore, I am no 

Pro. The sheep for fodder follow the shepherd, 
the shepherd for food follows not tlie sheep ; thou 
for wages foUowest thy master, thy master for 
wages follows not thee : therefore, thou art a sheep. 

Speed. Such another proof will make me cry 

Pro. But dost thou hear ? gav'st thou my let- 
ter to Jidia ? 

Speed. Ay, sir ; I, a lost mutton, gave your 
letter to her, a laced mutton ;"■ and she, a laced 
mutton, gave me, a lost mutton, nothing for luy 
labour ! 

Pro. Here 's too small a pasture for such store 
of muttons. 

Speed. If the ground be overcharged, you 
were best stick her. 

Pro. Nay, in that you are astray ;'' 'twere 
best pound you. 

Speed. Nay, sir, less than a pound shall serve 
me for carrying your letter. 

Pro. You mistake ; I mean the pound, a pinfold. 

Speed. From a pound to a pin ? fold it over 
and over, 
'T is threefold too little for carrying a letter to 
your lover. 

Pro. But what said she ? did she nod ? ° 

[Speed ?iod.f. 

' .4 lacrd million. The commentators have much doubt- 
ful learning on this p.issajje. They maintain that the ejjithet 
" laced " was a very uncomplimentary epithet of Sliak- 
spere'g time j and that the words taken together apply to a 
female of loose rharactcr. This is probable; but then the 
insolent application, by Speed, ol the term to Julia is re- 
ceived hy Proteus very patiently. U'he orifjinal meaning of 
the rcrb lace is to catch— to hold (see Tooke's Diversions 
&c. part ii. ch. -1); from which tlie homh lace, — anything 
whirii catches or holds. Speid might, therefore, without 
an insult to the mistress of Proteus, say — I, a lost sheep, 
gave your letter to her, a caught sheep. 

b Aslrotj. The adjective here should be read "a stray " 
— a siray sheep. 

c Did she nod? These words, not in the original text. 
Were introduced by Theobald. The stage-direction, "Speed 
nods," is also modern. 


Acr I 



Speed, l* 

Pro. Nod, I; why, that 's noddy 

Speed. You mistook, sir ; I say, she did nod : 
and you a^k me, if slio did nod ; and 1 say, I. 

I'lO. And that set togctlicr, is — noddy. 

Speed. Now you have taken the pains to set 
it together, take it for your pains. 

Pro. No, no, you shall liave it for bearing 
the letter. 

Speed. TTell, I perceive, I must be fain to 
bear with you. 

Pro. Why, sir, how do you bear with me ? 

Speed. Marry, sir, the letter very orderly ; 
having nothing but the word, noddy, for my 

Pro. Bcshrew me, but you have a quick wit. 

Speed. And yet it cannot overtake your slow 

Pro. Come, come, open the matter in brief: 
What said she ? 

Speed. Open your purse, that the money, and 
the matter, may be botli at once delivered. 

Pro. Well, sir, here is for your pains : What 
said she? 

Speed. Truly, sir, I think you'll hardly win 

Pro. ^Vhy ? Could'st thou perceive so much 
from her ? 

Si)eed. Sir, I could perceive nothing at all 
from her ; no, not so much as a ducat * for deli- 
vering your letter : And being so hard to me 
that brought your mind, I fear, she '11 prove as 
hard to you in telling your mind.'* Give her no 
token but stones ; for she 's as hard as steel. 

Pro. What said she, — nothing ? 

Speed. No, not so much as— take this for thy 
pains. To testify your bounty, I thank you, you 
have testem'd* me; in requital whereof, hence- 
forth carry your letters yoiusclf : and so, sir, I '11 
commend you to my master. 

Pro. Go, go, be gone, to save your ship from 
wrack ; 
Which cannot perish, having thee aboard. 
Being destined to a drier death on shore :' — 
I must go send some better messenger; 
I fear my Julia would not deign my lines. 
Receiving them from such a worthless post. 


• /. The old spellinR of the adinnative particle .4y. 

>> The second folio chanpcs the passage to "Afrmind." 
The first gives it '• your mind." Speed says,— she hnrd 
to me that hmught your mind, by letter; — she will be as hard 
to you in telling it, in person. 

c The same allu-ion to the proverb, " He that it bom to 
le hanged," i-c, occurs in the Tempest. 

SCENE II. — The same. Garden of Julia'i 


Enter Ji'Ll.v and LucKrr\. 

Jul. But say, Lucctta, now we are iJoni", 
Would'st thou then coiuisel me to fall in love ? 
I.iir. Ay, madam, so you stumble not un- 

Jill. Of all the f;iir resort of gentlemen, 
That every day with parlc' encounter me, 
In thy opinion, which is worthiest love? 

Luc. i'leasc you, repeat their names, I '11 shew 

my mind 
According to my shallow simple skill. 
Jul. What think'st thou of the fair sir Egla- 

mour ? 
Luc. As of a knight well-spoken, neat and fine ; 
But, were I you, he never should be mine. 
Jul. What think'st thou of the rich Mcrcatio ? 
Jmc. Well of his wc;dth ; but of himself, so, so. 
Jul. What think'st thou of the gentle Proteus ? 
Luc. Lord, lord ! to see what folly reigns in us ! 
////. How now ! what means this passion at his 

name ? 
Luc. Pardon, dear madam ; 't is a passing 

That T, unworthy body as I am, 
Should censure*" thus on lovely gentlemen. 
Jul. Why not on Proteus, as of all the rest ? 
Luc. Then thus, of many good 1 think 

him best. 
Jul. Your reason ? 

Luc. I have no other but a woman's reason ; 
I think him so, because I think him so. 

Jul. And would'st thou have me cast my love 

on him ? 
Luc. Ay.if you thought your love not cast away. 
Jul. Why, he of all the rest hath never mov'd 

Luc. Yet he of all the rest,! think, best loves ye. 
Jul. Hislittlespeakingsliewshis love but small. 
IjUc. Fire' that 's closest kept bunis most of all. 
Jul. They do not love that do not shew their 


» Parle. Speech. The tir«t folio ipelU it par 'jr. which 
shews the abbreviation of the original French parole 

*> Centure. Give aii opinion— a meaning whicU repeat- 
edly occurs. 

c Firt is here used as a dIssjrIUble. Steeveni, whose ear 
received it as a monosyllahle, corrupted the rcvting. in 
Act II. Sc. VII., wc h.iie this line— 

" But qualify tlit flre's extreme rage." 

See Walkrr, on " Shakespeare"! Vriiincalion," f x»lll. 
The present play fumii^hei other examples, such as, 

"Trenched in ice, which with an hours heaL" 

When the reader h«J • key to the reading of such wii.l» — 
f.-rr. *o«-<T— he mny dispense with the notes that he will 
perp^tuallv find on thc»e mailers in the pages of { leerma. 


AlT I.] 


[Scene 11. 

I.iic. 0, they love least tbat let uiea know 
tlicir love. 

Jul. I would I knew his rnind. 

Luc. Peruse tliis paper, maflani. 

Jul. To Juliii, — Say, from whom 't 

Luc. That the contents will shew 

Jul. Say, say ; who gave it thee ? 

Luc. Sir Valiiitine's page; and sent, I think, 
from Proteus: 
lie would have given it you, but I, being in llic 

Did in your name receive it; pardon tlie faull, 
I pray. 

Jut. Now, by my modesty, a goodly broker ! 
Dire vfiu presume to harbour wanton lines? 
I'd « liispir and conspire against my youth ? 
Now, trust me, 't is an oflicc of great worth. 
And you an olTicer 6t for the place. 
Tlicrc, take the paper, see it be return'd ; 
Or else return no more into my sight. 

Luc. To plead for love deserves more fee than 

.////. Will you be gone ? 

Luc. That you may ruminate. [Kril. 

Jul. And yet, I would I had o'erlook'd the 
It were a shame to call her back again, 
.\nd [)ray her to a fault for which I chid her. 
U liiil ' fool is she, that knows I am a maid.' 
.\nd would not force tlie letter to my view ! 
Sill .• maids, in modesty, say No, to that 
\\ Inch they would have the proffercr construe -^y. 
Fie, fie ! how wayward is this love, 
That, like a testy babe, will scratch the nurse, 
A ' ' , all huudilcd, kiss the rod ! 

ii :y I chid Lucetta hence. 

When willint^ly I would have had her here ! 
' ' rly •• I taught my brow to frown, 

\' . vard joy cnforc'd my heart to smile I 

^fy jxnancc is, to call Lueetta back, 
And ntk remission for my folly past : — 
What ho! Lucetta? 

lif-eillcr LUCKTTA. 

/'*"■. What would your ladyship ? 

Jul. Is 't near dinner time ? 

Ltc. I would it were ; 

Tliat you might kill your stomach on your meat. 
And not upon your maid. 

Jfl- "N^liat is 't you took uji 

S-i cringcrlyP 

Liir. Nothing. 

Ji*l- Why didst thou sloop then ? 

Lue. To take a paprr up that I let fall. 

b A- 

w»» tli. 

lern editions hare It, 
■ me. 

Jul. And is that paper nothing ? 

L'lr. Nothing coucerning me. 

Jul. Then let it lie for those that it concerns. 

Lur. ^ladam, it will not lie where it concerns, 
Unless it have a false interpreter. 

Jul. Some love of yours liath writ to you in 

Luc. That I might sing it, madam, to a tune : 
Give me a note : your ladyship can set. '^ 

////. As little by such toys as may be possible -. 
Best sing it to the tune of Ligld o' love^ 

Luc. It is too heavy for so light a tune. 

Jul. Heavy ? belike, it hath some burden then. 

Luc. Ay ; and melodious were it, would you 
sine: it. 

////. And why not you ? 

Luc. I cannot reach so higli. 

Jul. Let's see your song ; — How now, minion ? 

Luc. Keep tunc there still, so you will sing it 
out : 
And yet, methinks, I do not like this tune. 

Jul. You do not ? 

Luc. No, madam ; 't is loo sharp. 

Jul. You, minion, are too saucy. 

Ijuc. Nay, now yon are too flat. 
And mar the concord with too harsh a descant :*> 
There wauteth but a mean" to fill your song. 

Jul. The mean is drown'd with you, unruly 

Luc. Indeed, I bid the base^ for Proteus. 

Jul. This babble shall not henceforth trouble 
Here isa cod with protestation \—\_Tearsthelellei-. 
Go, get you gone ; and let the papers lie : 
You would be fintrerincr them, to ancrer ine. 

Luc. She makes it strange ; but she would be 
best pleas'd 
To be so angcr'd with another letter. [^E.rit. 

Jul. Nay, would I were so angcr'd Mitb the 
same ! 

hateful hands, to tear such loving words ! 
Injurious wasps ! to feed on such sweet honey,' 
And kill the bees, that yield it, with your stings ! 

1 '11 kiss each several paper for amends. 

Look, here is writ — liiud Julia ; — unkind Julia ! 

As in revenge of thy ingratitude, 

I throw thy name against the bruising stones, 

* Set. Compnse. Julia plays upon the word, in the next 
line, in a different sense,— to " set by," being to make 
arcount of. 

b Dcfcanl. The simple air, in music, was called the 
" Plain song," or piound. The " descant " was what we now 
call a " variation. " 

c Mean. The ti-nor. The whole of the musical allusions 
m this pas<:,i!,'c shew that the terms of the art were familial 
to a popular audience. 

<' You in the original. 
Ijuruly base." 

e The qiiibhlin? Lucetta here turns the allusion to the 
country pame of base, or prison-base, in which one rans and 
ciiallenges another to pursue. 

The ordinary reading is "vow 

/:^T I.l 


(SiBHK lit 

Trampling contemptuously on thy disdain. 
And, here is writ — tore-tcounled Froteus : — 
Poor woundid name ! my bosom, a:> a bed, 
Shall lodse tlioc, till thv wound be tliroughly 

And thus 1 starcli it with a sovereign kiss. 
But twice, or thrice, was Proteus written down : 
Be calm, good wind, blow not a word away. 
Till I have found each letter in the letter. 
Except mine own name : thai some whirlwind 

Unto a ragged, fearful-hanging rock,* 
And throw it thence into the nigiiig sea ! 
Lo, here in one line is his name twice \mt, — 
Poor forlorn Proteus, passionate Proteus, 
To the siceet Julia ; that I '11 tear away ; 
And yet I will not, sith so prettily 
He couples it to iiis complaining names ; 
Thus will 1 fold them one upon another ; 
Now kiss, embrace, contend, do what you will. 

Re-enter Lucetta. 

Luc. Madam, dinner is ready, and your father 

Jul. Well, let us go. 
Luc. ^^^lat, shall these papers lie like tell-tales 

Jul. If you respect them, best to take them up. 
Luc. Nay, I was taken up for laying them 

down : 
Yet here they shall not lie, for catching cold.'' 
Jul. I see you have a month's mind to them.*" 
Luc. Ay, madam, you may say what sights you 

see ; 
I see things too, although you judge I wink. 
Jul. Come, come, wilt please you go. 


SCENE III. — The same. A room in Antonio'j 

Enter AxTOXio and Pantiiixo. 
Jnt. Tell me, Panthino, what sad'' talk was that, 
Wherewith my brother held you in the cloister ? 
Pan. 'T was of his nephew Proteus, your son. 
Ant. Why, what of him ? 
Pan. He wonder'd, that your lordship 

» Fear/uf-Aonyin^, adopted from DeHm, In Camb edlt.lMS. 

'■ For catching old. Le^t t)iey should catch cold. 

• The month's mind, in one form of the expression, 
referred to the solemn mass, or other obsequies directed to 
be performed for the repose of the soul, under the will of a 
dereased person. The strong desire with which this cere- 
mony was regarded in Caiholic times might have rendered 
•he general expression "month's mind" equiTalent to an 
eager longini;, in which sense it is generally thought to lie 
here used. But we arc not quite sure that it means a strong 
and abiding desire : two lines in Hudibras would teem to 
make the " month's mind " only a passing inclination : — 
" For if a trumpet sound, or drum beat, 
Who hath not a month's mind to combat." 

•^ Sad. Serious. 

Would suffer iiim to spend his youth at hunic ; 
While other men, of slender reputation, 
Put forth tiieir sons to seek preferment out : 
Some, to tlie wars, to try their fortune there ; 
Some, to discover islands far away ; 
Some, to the stutiious universities " 
For any, or for all these exercises, 
He said, thai Piuteus, your son, was mt^el : 
And did request me, to importune you, 
To let him .«|iend his time no more at home. 
Which would be great impeachment tc iiis age, 
In having known no travel in his youih.» 
Anl. Nor need'st thou much importune me to 

Whereon this month I have been hammering. 
I hare considered well his loss of time ; 
And bow he cannot be a perfect man, 
Not being try'd, and tutored in the world : 
Experience is by industry achiev'd. 
And perfected by the swift course of time : 
Then, tell me, whither were 1 best to send him ? 

Pan. I think, your lordship is not ignorant, 
How his companion, youthful Valentine, 
Attends the emperor in his roy:d coun. 
A/it. I know it well. 
Pan. 'T were good, I think, your lordship sent 

him thither: 
There shall he practise tilts and tournaments,'" 
Hear sweet discourse, converse with noblemen ; 
-Viid be in eye of every exercise, 
Worthy his youth and nobleness of birth. 
Ant. I like thy counsel ; well hast thou ad- 

vis'd : 
And, that thou may'st perceive how well I like il, 
The execution of it shall muke known : 
Even with the speediest expedition 
I will dispatch him to the emperor's court. 
Pan. To-morrow, may it you, Don 

With other gentlemen of good esteem. 
Are journeying to salute the cm|)eror, 
And to commend their service to his will. 
An/. Good company ; with them shall Proteus 

Po: ^ 

And, — in good time.' — Now will wc break with 


Entrr pRryTEUS. 
Pro. Sweet love ! sweet lines ! sweet life ! 
Here is her hand, the agent of her heart ; 
Here is her oath for love, her honour's pawn : 
O, that our fathers would applaud our lores, 

• In food lime. As Antonio it declaring hit inlentUfl 

Prntemappe.-ir- •' '- ' ••, breakt olT with ih» 

exprc^'inn, " i; '• 

*> Drrak iri'i matter to blm,— • fotio 

which Trpoatcdly occur*. 


Act I J 


[Sci;Nji III. 

To seal our happiness with their coiisents ! 
O heavenly Julia ! 

Ant. llow now ? what letter are you reading 

there ? 
Pro. May 't please youi- lordship, 't is a word 
or two 
Of commciulation sent from Valentine, 
Deiiver'd by a friend that came from hiui. 
Ant. Lend me the letter ; let me see what news. 
Pro. There is no news, my lord ; but tiiat he 
How happily he lives, how well-beloved, 
And daily graced by the emperor; 
Wi-shing me with him, partner of his fortune. 
Ant. And how stand you affected to his wisli ? 
Pro. As one relying on your lordship's will, 
And not depending on his friendly wish. 
Ant. My will is something sorted with his 
wish : 
.Mu.NC not that I thus suddenly proceed; 
For what I will, I will, and tiicre an end. 
I am rcsolv'd, that thou shalt spend some time 
With Valcntinus in the emperor's court; 
\\\\a.i maintenance he from his friends receives, 
Like exhibition' thou shalt have from me. 
To-morrow be in readiness to go ; 

* Rxhibitirn. Stipend, allowance. The word is still used 
In l)ii< MHM! Ill our universities. 

Excuse it not, for I am peremptory. 

Fro. My lord, I cannot be so soon provided ; 
Please you, deliberate a day or two. 

A/it. Look, what thou want'st shall be sent 
after thee : 
No more of stay ; to-morrow thou must go.— 
Come on, Pantbiuo ; you shall be employ'd 
To hasten on liis expedition. 

{Exeunt Ant. and Pan. 

Pro. Thus have I shunn'd the fire, for fear of 
burning ; 
And drencli'd me in the sea, where I am 

droMTi'd : 
I fear'd to shew my father Julia's letter, 
Lest he should take exceptions to my love ; 
And with the vantage of mine own excuse 
Hath he excepted most against my love. 
O, how this spring of love resembleth 

The uncertain glory of an April day ; 
Which now shews all the beauty of the sun. 

And by and by a cloud takes all away ! 

Re-enter Panthino. 

Pan. Sir Proteus, your father calls for you ; 
He is in haste ; therefore, I pray you go. 

Pro. Why, this it is ! my heart accords there- 
And yet a thousand times it answers, no. 




1 Scene. — " f tcill be thy Bcadsmnn, Valentine." 

The Anglo-Saxon head, — a prayer, — Bomethiiig 
prayed, — has given the name to the mechauiciil hclj) 
which the ritual of the early cliurch associated 
with the act of pniying. To drop a ball down a 
string aX every prayer, whether enjoined by the 
priest or by voluntary obligation, has been the 
practice of the Romish church for many centuries. 
In our language the ball, from its use, came to bo 
called the bead. To " bid the beads," and to 
"pray," were synonymous. Burnet, in his History 
of the Reforiuatiim, says, " The form of bidding 
prayer was not begun by King Homy, as some 
have weakly im^igined, but was used in the times 
of popery, as will appear by tlie form of bidding 
the beads in King Henry the Seventh's time. Tlio 
way wa'J, first, for the preacher to name and open 
his text, and then to call on the people to go to 
their prayers, and to tell them what they were io 
pray for ; after which all the people said their icac/« 
in a general silence, and the minister kneeled down 
also and 8;dd his." We find the expression " bedcs 
bydding" in the Vision of Pierce Plowman, which 
was written, according to Tyrwhitt, about 1362. 
In the same remarkable poem we also find Bedniau 
— headman, or beadsman. A beadsman, in the 
sense of " I will be thy beadsman," is one who 
offers up prayers for the welfare of another. In 
this general sense it was used by Sir Henry Leo to 
Queen Elizabeth. (See Illustration 10.) "Thy 
poor daily orator and beadsman " was the common 
subscription to a petition to any great man or 
l^erson in authority. We retain the substance, 
though not the exact form, of this courtly humi- 
liation, even to the present day, when we memo- 
rialize the Crown and the Houses of Parliament, 
and seek to propitiate those authorities by the 
unmeaning assurance th it their " petitioners shall 
ever pray." But the great men of old did not 
wholly depend upon the efficacy of their prayers 
for their welfare, which proceeded from the expec- 
tation or gratitude of their suitors. They had 
regularly ai>pointed beadsmen, who were paid to 
weary Heaven with their 8ui)plicationri. It is to 
this practice that Shakspere alludes, in the speech 
of Scroop to Richard II. : — 

" Thy very beadsmen learn to bend tlicir bows 
Of double-ratal yew against tliy state." 

Johnson, upon this p&ssage, Bays, " The king's 
beadsmen were his chaplains." This as.sertion i.t 
partly borne out by an entry in "The Privy Purs<; 
Expenses of King Henry VIII.," published by Sir 
HaiTis Nicolas : — " Item, to Sir Torche, the king'.s 
bede man at the Rood in Grenewiche, for one yero 

now ended, xl s." The title " Sir " was in thene 
days more e-^iiecinlly applied to prii'xt*. (Sc« 
Merry Wives of Windsor.) But the term " Bedes- 
man " was also, wo have little doubt, gonondly 
apjilied to any persons, whether of the clergy or 
laity, who received endowments for the jttu'ivise of 
offering prayers for the sovereign. Henry VII. es- 
tabli.siieil such persons upon n magnificent scide. 
The Harleiim MS No. 1-J9S, in the BritiNJi Mumum. 
is an indenture made between Henry VII. and John 
Islipp, Abbot of St. Peter, We.stmiiisler, in which 
the abbot engages to " provicle and sustain within 
the said mon.-istery. in tlie almshouses there, there- 
fore made and appointed by the said king, thirteen 
poor men, one of them being a priest ; " and the 
duty of these thirteen poor men in " to pray during 
the life of the said king, our sovereign lonl, for 
the good and pros]ierovn state of the same king, our 
sovereign hud, and for the prospering of this his 
realm." These men are not in the indeiituro called 
bedesmen ; that instrument providing that they 
" shall be named and called the Almesse men of the 
said king our sovereign lonl." The general dcitignii- 
tion of those who make prayers for others — bedes- 
men — is here svuik in a name derive<l from the jmr- 
ticular almesse (alms^, or endowment. The drens of 
the twelve almsmen is to be a gown and a hoo<l, 
"and ascochyn to be m.ideand set upon every of the 
said gowns, and a red crowned and embroidered 
thereupon." In the following design (the figtiroof 
which, a monk at his devotions, is from n drawing 
by Quelinus, a pupil of l{ul)en«) the costume is 
tiiken from an illumination in the indenture now 
recited, which illumination represents the abbot, the 
priest, and the almsmen receiving the indenture. 


The first almsman l)e'ir« a strintrof bmdi uj>on his 
hand. The "scochyu " made and Hct ujx.n the 
gown reminds us of the "badge" of poor VAie 



Ochiltree, in the Antiquary; and this brings us 
buck to " Beadsmen." Thi.^ prince of mendicants 
w,i.4, OS our reiiderrt will remember, a " King's 
i;..-i.-Mn:iu"— "an order of puupers to whom the 
kin^'8 of .Scotland weie in the custom of distri- 
i.utinii * certain alms, in conformity with the or- 
dinnncca of the (.'atholic church, and who were 
exi)ected, in return, to pray f'jr the royal welfare 
and that ofty slate." The similarity in the prac- 
tices of the " King's Bedesmen" of Scotland, and 
th- " men "' of Henry VII., is precise. 
•• Thii onlcr," as Sir Walter Scott tells u.s in his 
.ulverli.Hemoiit to the Antiquary, from which the 
above description is copied, " i.s still kept up." 
The " [>oor orators and beadsmen " of England 
live now only in a few musty records, or in the 
.dlusions of Spencer and Shakspere ; and in the 
mmK way the "Blue Gowns" or "King's Bedes- 
men " of .Scotland, who " are now seldom to be 
Keen in the streets of Iviinburgh," will be chiefly 
remcinljered in the imperishable pages of the Au- 
thor of Waverley. 

* Scene I. — " Nay, give me not the boots." 

This exprcfisiivn may refer, as Steevens has sug- 
^'f.fte 1, to a country sport in harvest-time, in which 
liny offender against the laws of the rcaping-season 
was laid on a bench and slapped with boots. But 
Steevens has also concluded — and Douce follows 
up the opinion,— that the allnsicn is to the in.strn- 
ment of tort\ire called the Boots. That horrid 
engine, m well as the rack and other monuments 
of the cruelty of irresponsible power, was u.sed in 
the quesllon, in the endeavour to wring a confes.sion 
o<it of the nccnsed by terror or by actual torment. 
Thi.i meaning gives a propriety to the allusion 
which we have not fteen noticed. In the passage 
lieforo us Valentine is bantering Proteus about 
his nuntress — and Proteus exclaims. " Nay, give 
mo not the boots" — do not torture me to confess 
to those love-delinquencies of which you accuse 
mo. The torture of the boots was used princiijally 
in Scotland ; and Douce has an extract from a very 
f tirious ]>ampldet containing an account of its in- 
tli'ti .ri in the presence of our James I., before he 
was culled to the Kngli.fh crown, upon one Dr. 
K»«in, n supposed wizard, who was charged with 
r ■ . Rtorm.'i which tho king encountered on 

h ;■ from Denmark. The l)rutal superstition, 

which led Jamc.M to the u^e of tliis horrid torture, 
i* lew revolting than tlie calculating tyranny which 
prescribed its application to the unhap)>y Whig 
;: ' if a ri-nturj- later, a.s recorded by Burnet, 

■ of Mncrael, in 1066. Our readers will 
I • '-r Scott, in his powerful scene 

' • the Privy Council of Scotland, 

. think of the wily I.,auik'r<lale and his 
'i ■•: . jr)ko when the tortured man has fainted 
— "ho'll scArce ride to-<lay, though he has had his 
boots on." Douce says, " the torture of the boot 
wi»« known in France, and, in all probability, im- 
[■ ■■ 'fn that cotuitry." He then gives a re- 

1 -n of i*. copied fronj Millreus's Praxis 

criminu j 'i. Piirifl, 1.1H. The wood-cut 

whirh wr ^ .^ from the 8.ime book ; but we 
hftre rcatoro^l a portion of tho original engraving 
which Douce ha-s omitted —tho judges, or er- 
uniucni, witnesaing the torture, and prcparrd to 

record the prisoner's deposition under it.s endur- 


3 Scene I. " fn the bad 

The cativg canker dicclls." 

This is a figure which Shakspere has often re- 
peated. In the sonnets we have (Sonnet LXX.), — 

" Canker vice the sweetest buds doth love." 
In King John — 

" Now will canker sorrow eat my bud." 

In Hamlet, — 

" The canker galls the infants of the spring." 

The peculiar canker which our poet, a close ob- 
.server of Nature, have noted, is described in 
Midsummer Night's Dream, — 

" Some to kill cankers in the musk-rose buds." 

And in 1 Heniy A''I., — 

" Hath not thy rose a canker." 

The instrument by which the canker was produced 
is described in 

" The bud bit with an envious worm " 

of Romeo and Juliet ; and in 

" concealment, like a worm i' the bud, 
Fed on her damask check," 

in Twelfth Night. 

Shak.spere found the "canker worm " in the Old 
Testament (Joel i. 4). The Geneva Bible, 1561, 
has " That which is left of the palmer-worm hath 
the grasshojiper eaten, and the residue of the grass- 
hopper hath the cankei'vjorm eaten, and the resi- 
due o{ the canIcer-ivo7-m hath the caterpillar eaten." 
The Arabic version of the passage in Joel, renders 
what is here, and in our received translation, " the 
palmer-worm " by dud, which seems a general de- 
nomination for the larva state of an insect, and which 
applies especially to the "canker-worm." The 
original Hebrew, which is rendered palmer-worm, 
is from a verb meaning to cut or shear ; the Greek 
of the Septuagint, by which the same word is ren- 
dered, in derived from the verb meaning, to bend. 
— (See Pictorial Bible, Joel i.) These two words 
give a most exact description of the "cankei*- 
worm ; " — of " the canker in the musk-rose budo;" 


(■f thf larvic whicb ;ire proiUiccil in the leuvos of 
lutuiv (ihiuts, aud wliich !iu<l liultitatioii uuil food 
l>y the ilestruction of the receptacle of their infant 
existence These c:iterpillai-8 are tenneil " leaf- 
rollers," and their economy is amongst the most 
curious and interesting of the researches of ento- 
iuolo]K'y. The geneiiil operations of these larva;, 
iind the pirticular operations of the "cankers in 
the musk-rose buds," have been descriljed in a 
little volume entitled, " Insect Architecture." A 
small dark thrown caterpillar, with a black head and 
six feet, is the " canker worm " of the rose. It de- 
rives its specific name Lozotania liosana, from its 
habits. The grub, produced from eggs deposited 
in the previous summer or autuuju, makes its ap- 
pearance with the first opening of the leaves, and 
it constructs its summer tent while the leaves are 
in their soft and half-expanded state. It weaves 
them together so strongly, bendiii'j tliem (according 
to the Greek of the Septuaijiut) and fiistening their 
discs with the silken conis which it spins — that the 
growth of the bud iu which it forms its canopy is 
completely stopped. Thiis secured from the rain 
and from external enemies, it begins to destroy the 

inner partitions of ita dwelling': it becoiuoa th* 
cuttlmj insect of the Holirow. la thia wny, 
" thv matt forward bud 
" Is c.itcn liy the canker ere it blow." 

* ScE.NK I, — " Sot SO much at a ducat." 

The ducat— which deriv. ' , 

ducal coin — is rep'-utedly li :,. 

There were two causes fur tint. Kmit, niauy ol 
the incidents of hi-< plays were derived from Ititlinn 
stories, and were laid in Italian scenes ; and hit 
chanictHrs, therefore, properly use the name of Ihn 
coin of their country. Thus, ducat occurs iu thi» 
play — iu the Come ly of Errors — in Much A<lo 
about Nothing — in Romeo and Juliet; and, more 
than all, in the Merchant of Venice \\\\t lUily 
was the iireat resort of English tnivellers in the 
time of Shakspere ; and ducat being a familiar word 
to him, we find it also in Hamlet, and in Cymbeline. 
Venice has, at present, its silver ducat — the ducat 
of eight livres — worth about 3«. 3d. The following 
representation of its old silver ducat is from a coin 
iu the British Museum : — 

The gold ducat of Venice is at present worth 
about 6«. The following representation of its old 
g.)ld ducat is from a print in the Coin Room in 
the British Museum. 


• Scene I. — " You have testeru'd me." 

A verb is here made out of the name of a 
coin — the tester — which is mentioned twice in 
Shakspere : 1, by Falstaff, when he praises his 
recruit Wart. " There 's a tester for thee ; " and, 2. 
by Pistol, " Tester I '11 have in pouch " We have 
also testril, which is the same, in Twelfth Night. 
The value of a tester, teston, te.stem, or tcsti il, as 
it is variously written, w;i3 sujiposed to Vie deter 
rained by a'_'e in Latimer's semions n-'i^-l) : — 
" They brought him a denari, a piece of their cur- 

rent coin that was worth ten of our usual pence- 
such another piece as our testcme." But the value 
of the tester, like that of all our ancient coins, 
was constantly changing, in consequence of the in- 
famous practice of debasing the currency, whi- h 
was amongst the expedients of bad governmenU 
for wriugiug money out of the people by cheating 
as well as violence. The Kren<h name. trsUm, wa*. 
applied to a silver coiu of L«ui« XII , ITjIS. 1m- 
cause it bore the king's head ; and the EngliKh 
shilling received the same name at the beginning 
of the reign of Henry VIII..— probably bccauf.' 
it had the same value as the French teston. The 
following representation of the j-hilling of Henr>- 
VIII. is from a specimen in the British Museum. 
The tcstons were called in by proclamations iu the 
second and third y.nrs of Edward VI.. in conse- 
quence of the extensive for^-eriet of t! v 
Sir Widiam Sherriuk'ton, f-r wlii !;. *y -•< 
actof parliament, he was at- v 

are described in prot , ' 

xiirf., commotdy called te«ton«." Hut the l*-« 
.shillincs still onfinue-1 to circulate, and they were, 
ncr-f.rdirn' t^i Stow, "c.dled down" to the v.d'ic of 

. ■ ' • - -,nv to 



The value seerns, at last, to have settled to six- 
pence. Hiirrison, in his Description of England, 
Bays, " Sixiience, usunlly named the testone." In 
Shakspere's time it would appear, from the fol- 
lowiiii; passage in Twelfth Niglit, where Sir ToV.y 
iind Sir Andrew are hribing the Clown to sing, 
that its value was sixpence: — 

" Sir. To. Conic on ; there is sixpence for you : let's have 
a song. 
Sir. A. There's a testril of me, too." 

In the i-eign of Anne, its value, according to Locke, 
who distiiiguisheg between the shilling and the 
tester, was sixpence ; and to this day we sometimes 
hear the name applied to sixpence. 

'4i/~J ? ■' "" ■ 

. -y- 

' Scene II. — " Best sing it to the tune of Light 
o' love." 

This wa."! the name of a dance tune, which, from 
the fre'pient mention of it in the old poets, appears 
to have been ver}' ])op'ilar. Rh;ikspere refers to it 
again in Much Ado about Nothing, with more ex- 
actness : " Light o' love ; — that goes without a 
hnrthen ; do you sing it and I '11 dance it." We 
shall give the music (which Sir John Hawkins re- 
covered from an ancient MS.) in that play. 

' Scene II. — " Ttijurioun tcasps/ to feed on such 
surct lionrij." 

The economy of hees was known to Shakspere 
with iin exactness which he could not have derived 
from books. Tiie description in Henry V., "' So 
wf)rk the honey bees," is a study for the naturalist 
ns well a.s the poet. He had doubtless not only 
obhcrvffl " the lazy, yawning drone," but the '" in- 
jurious wasps," that plunilered the stores which 
had been collected by those who 

" Make I'oot upon the summer's velvet buds." 

'I'hese were the fearless robbers to which the pretty 
pouting Julia compares her fingers : — 

" InJurinuK wasps I to feed on such sweet honey, 
And kill the liecs that yield it with your »tin{,'s." 

Tlie metaphor is as accurate as it is beautiful. 

• Scene III. — " .Some to the wars, iL-r." 

\\'c liavo alluded to these lines, somewhat at 
length, in the Introductory Notice. It would be 
out of plnce here to give a more particular detail 
f>f what were the wars, and who the illustrious men 
that went " to try their fortimes there," or to re- 
cafiitulatc " the island.^ faraway," that were sought 
for or discovered, or to even a list of " the 
studious universities" to which the eager scholars 
of Kiizabefh's time resorted. The sulyect is too 
large for us to nttfinpt its illustration by any mi* 
ntite detail.s. We may, however, extract a passage 
from GifFord's "Memoirs of Ben Jonson," prefixed 
to his excellent eilition of that great dramatist, 
which directlj' bears upon this'ic : — 

■' The long reign of Elizabeth, though sufiBcientlj' 
•vgitated to keep the mind alert, was yet a season of 

comparative stability and peace. The nobility, 
who had been nursed in domestic turbulence, for 
which there was now no place, and the more active 
spirits among the gentry, for whom entertainment 
could no longer be found in feudal grandeur and 
hospitality, took advantage of the diversity of em- 
ployment happily opened, and spread themselves in 
every direction. They put forth, in the language 
of Shakspere, 

' Some, to the wars, to try their fortunes there ; 
Some, to discover islands far away ; 
Some, to the .studious universities ; ' 

and the effect of these various pursuits was speedily 
discernible. The feelings narrowed and embittered 
in household feuds, expanded and purified them- 
selves in distant warfare, and a high sense of honour 
and generosity, and chivalrous valour, ran with elec- 
tric speed from bosom to bosom, oia the return of 
the first adventurers in the Flemish campaigns ; 
while the wonderful reports of discoveries, by the 
intrepid mariners who opened the route since so 
successfully pursued, faithfully committed to 
writing, and acting at once upon tlie cupidity 
and curiosity of the times, produced an incon- 
ceivable effect in diffusing a thirst for novelties 
among a people, who, no longer driven in hostile 
array to destroy one another, and combat for in- 
tere.sts in which they took little concern, had leisure 
for looking around them, and considtiug their own 

' Scene III. — " In having known no travel, ibc." 

There was a most curious practice with reference 
to travelling in those days, which is well described 
in Fynes J^lorj'son's Itinerary. Adventurous per- 
sons, of slender fortune, deposited a small sum, 
upon undertaking a distant or perilous journey, to 
receive a larger sum if they returned alive. Mory- 
son's brother, he tells us, desired to visit Jerusalem 
and Constantinople, and he " thought this putting 
out of money to be an honest means of gaining, at 
least, the charges of his journey." He, therefore, 
"put out some few hundred pounds, to be repaid 
twelve hundred pounds, upon his return from 
those two cities, and to lose it if he died in the 
journey." We shall have occasion to refer to this 


practice, iu the Temiiest, wbcro SLiikspere liia- 
tinctly uotices it : 

" Each putter out on five for one will bring us 
Good Wiirnint of." &c. 

We have here meutioued this singular sort of bar- 
gain, to shew tliat thosu who iiiidfrtook " travel " 
iu those days were considered as iucurriuy serious 

" Scene 111.—" There »hall he practUe lilU and 
St. Pahiye, in his Memoirs of Chivaliy, says, that, 
iu their iirivate castles, the gentlemen {jnictistil 
the exercises which would prepare them for the 
puhlic tournaments. This refers to the period 
which appears to have terminated some half cen- 
tury before the time of Elizabeth, ^vhe^ real war- 
fare was conducted with express reference to the 
laws of kni^'hthood ; and the touruay, with all 
its magnificent array, — its minstrels, its heralds, 
and its damosels in lofty towers, — had its hard 
blows, its wounds, and sometimes its deaths. There 
were the "Joustes fi outrance," or the " Jou.-ites 
mortelles et li champ," of Froissart. But the 
" tournaments" that Shak.spere sends Proteus to 
"practise," were tiio "Joustes of Peace," the 
"Joustes il Plaisance," the tournaments of gay 
pennons and pointless lances. They had all the 
gorgeousness of the old knigiitly encouutei-s, but 
they appear to have been re^jarded only as courtly 
pastimes, and not as serious preparations for " a 
well-foughteu field." One or two instiinces from 
the annals of these times will at least amuse our 
readers, if they do not quite satisfy them that these 
combats were as harmless to the combatants as the 
fierce encounters between other less noble actors — 
the heroes of the stage, 

On Whitsun Monday, 15S1, a most magnificent 
tournament was held iu the Tilt-yard at Westmin- 
ster, in honour of the Daiipuin,and other noblemen 
and gentlemen of France, wIm had arrivetl as com- 
missiouei"3 to the queen, lloiinshed describes the 
proceedings respecting this " Triumjih," at great 
length. A magnificent gallery was erected for the 
queen and her court, which w;vs called by the 
combatants the fortress of perfect beauty ; "and 
not without cause, forasmuch as her highness would 
be there included." Four gentlemen — the Eail of 
Arundel, the Lord Windsor. Mr. Philip Sydney, 
and ilr. Fulke Greville — calling themselves the 
foster-children of Desire, laid claim to this fortress, 
and vowed to withstand all who should <lare to 
oppose them. Their challenge being accepted by 
certain gentlemen of the court, they proceeded (in 
gorgeovis apparel, and attended by sipiires and at- 
tendants richly dressed) forthwith to the tilt, and 
on the following day to the toiiriiaj-, where they 
behaved nobly and bravely, but, at length, submit- 
ted to the queen, acknowledging that they ought 
not to have accompanied Desire by Violence, ami 
concluding a long speech, full of the compliments 
of tiie day, by declariii:,' themselves thenceforth 
slaves to the " Fortress of Perfect Peaiitie." These 
" Courtlie triumphes" were arranged and conducted 
in the most costly manner. The queen's g;illery 
was painted iu imitation of stone and covered 
with ivy and garlands of tiowers ; cannons were 
fired with perfumed powder ; the dresses of the 
knights aud courtiers were of the richest stufT*^ 

and covered with < • ' litonea ; . . 

mounts, costly iha ! many . 

Weio introiliued to j^ne illect to tlio scene. 

In the rei^;nof Kli/abeth there w«ti- umiMid ex- 
ercises of arms, whicli were fimt c : i by 

Sir Henry Lee. This worthy knight i... 
to appear armed iu the Tilt-yurd ut We 
ou the 27th November (the aniiiv. ■ 
queen's accession) iu every year, tint . 
age, wliero ho otlVred to tilt with nil ■ 
honour of Her M.ije.sty's aceeiision. llo<' 
the queen's champion until the thirtythini year 
of lier leign, when, having arrived at thn itixtieth 
year of his a;;e, he resigned iu favour of George, 
Karl of Cumberland, who was invented iu the 
ofiBce with much form and Koleniiiity iu 161>0. It 
was on the 27th November in that year, that Sir 
Heiii-y Lee, liaving performed hi.s devoirs in the 
li-sts for the last time, and with muchapplauhc, nc- 
eompanied by the luirl of Cumberland, presented 
himself before the queen, who was seated iu her 
gallery overlooking the li.^ts, an<l kneeling ou one 
knee, humlily besought Her >hijeHty to accept the 
Karl of Cumberland for her knight, to • 
the yearly exercises which he was com|>ei;. 
inlirmities of iige, himself to rcliutpii'h. lljo 
queen graciously accepting the ofl'er, the oM knight 
presented hia armour ut Her Majesty's feet, and 
then assisting in fastening the armour of the earl, 
lie mounted him ou his horse. Thin cereuiony 
being performe 1, he put upon his own }>cr«ou a 
side coat ot " black velvet |>ointetl under the arm, 
and covered his head (in lieu of a helmet) wiiii a 
buttoned cap of the country fiishion." Then, whilnt 
music was heanl j)roceeding from a uiagnificeiit 
temple which had bt en erected for the oceaHJun, he 
presented to the queen, through the hands of three 
beautiful maidens, a veil curiously wrought, nnd 
richly adorned, and other gifts of great uiaK'nifi 
cence, aud declared that, idthoiigh his youth and 
strength had decayctl, his duty, f.iith, and love 
remained perfect as ever ; his IuiikIh, iiihtead of 
wielding the lance, should now be held up in 
prayer for Her Majesty's welfare ; and he trusted 
she would allow him to be her Ueadsnian, now tliat 
he had ceased to incur knightly perils in her iwr- 
vice. Put the (jiieen complimented him upon his 
gallantry, and desired that ho would nK<nd the 
future annual jousts, and direct the kn 'fir 

proceedings ; for iu'lee<l his virtue u: . i in 

arms were declared by all to bo deserving of com- 
mand. Id the course of the good old kuight'a 
career of " virtue aud vnlour iu armH," ha wa« 
joined by many companions, nuxiiiua todistiuguiiih 
them.selves in all courtly and chivalrous exerei.en. 
One duke, nineteen e;trls, • .ur 

knights of the g.irter, an. . .tid 

fifty other knights ;iiid e.-"juir"S, are htJited to hnve 
taken {wrt iu these anuu.d fe.its of armsL^Soo 
Wajpole's Miscellaneous Aiititpiitirs. No. I. pp. 41 
to 48, which contdns an extract from " Honour, 
Miliary an<l Civil." I?y Sir W. Segur; Norroy ; 
lA.ndon, 1002.) 

If Shakspere ha<l not lor)kc«l up"n thi-M "An- 
nual I'lxerci.sis of Arms," wli'ii h' • of the 
tournament.^ "in the emperot's ' i* had 
j'robably been mlmitted to the T. .d- 

wortli, on sonic occosiou of uiagn.i , -,. bj 

the proud Leicester. 


-1- f- " t,<^<' < f fe • 

ACT 11. 

SCENE I. — Milan. A Room in the Duke'.v 

Enlnr Valentine and Speed. 

Speed. Sir, your glove.' 

Val. Not mine ; my gloves are on. 

Speed. Why then this may be yours, for this 

is but one." 
Val. Ha! let me see: ay, give it me, it's 

mine : — 
Sweet ornament that decks a thing divine ! 
Ah Silvia ! Silvia ! 
Spued. Madam Silvia ! madam Sdvia ! 
Val. IIow now, sirrah ? 
Speed. She is not within hearing, sir. 
Val. Why, sir, who bade you call her ? 
Speed. Your worsl\ip, sir ; or else I mistook. 
Val. Well, you Ml still be too forward. 
Speed. And yet I was last cliidden for being 

too slow. 
I'al. Go to, sir ; tell me, do you know 

madam Silvia? 
Speed. She that your worship loves ? 
Val. Why, how know you that I am in love ? 
Speed. Marry, by tlicse special marks : First, 

* The quibble liere depend* upon the pronunciation of 
one. which wai anciently pi unnunced ai if it were written nn. 


you have learned, like sir Proteus, to wreath \our 
arms like a male-content ; to relish a love-song, 
like a Robin-red-breast ; to walk alone, like one 
that had the pestilence ; to sigh, like a school-boy 
that had lost his A. B. C. ; to weep, like a young 
wench that had buried her grandam ; to fast, like 
one that takes diet ; to watch, like one that fears 
robbing ; to speak puling, like a beggar at Hal- 
lowmas. '^ You were wont, when you laughed, 
to crow like a cock ; when you walked, to walk 
like one of the lions ; ^ when you fasted, it was 
presently after dinner ; when you looked sadly, 
it was for want of money : and now you are 
metamorphosed with a mistress, that, when I 
look on you, I can hardly think you my master. 

Val. Are all these things perceived in me ? 

Speed. They are all perceived without ye. 

Val. Witlioiit me ? they cannot. 

Speed. Without you ! nay, that 's certain, for 

' To walk like one of the Dons, is thus commented on by 
Ritson : " If Shakspere bad not been thinking of the iions 
in the Tower, he would have written 'like a lion.'" — 
Shakspere was thinking dramatically ; and he therefore 
tnade Speed use an image with which he might he familiar. 
The finn, decided step of a lion, furnished an api illustration 
of the bold hearinp; ot Speed's master before he was a lover. 
The comparison was not less just, when made with " one ol 
the lions ; " — and the use of that comparison was inkeepin" 
with Speed's character, whilst the lofty image, " like a lion," 
would not have been so. The " clownish servant " might 
compare his master to a caged lion, without being poetical, 
which Shakspere did not intend him to be. 

Act II ] 



without you were so simple, none else would : 
but you are so without these follies. th:it these 
follies are within you, aud sliiue through jou 
like the water iu an urinal; that not an eye 
that sees you but is a physieian to comment on 
your malady. 

I'al. But tell me, dost thou know my lady 
Silvia ? 

Sp^ed. She that you gaze on so, as she sits at 
sujiper ? 

I'al. Hast thou observed that? even she I 

Speed. Why, sir, I know her not. 

Vol. Dost thou know her by my gazing on 
her, and yet know'st her not ? 

Speed. Is she not hard favoured, sir ? 

Fal. Not so f;ur, boy, as well favoured. 

Si)eed. Sir, I know that well enough. 

Val. What dost thou know? 

Speed. That she is not so fair, as (of you) w cU 

Val. I mean, that her beauty is exquisite, but 
her favour inlinitc. 

Speed. That 's because the one is painted, and 
the other out of ;ill count. 

J'al. How jiainted ? and how out of count ? 

Speed. Marry, sir, so painted, to make her fair, 
that no man counts of her beauty. 

Fal. How esteemest thou nic ! I account of 
her beauty. 

Speed. You never saw her since she was de- 

Fal. How long hath she been deformed ? 

Speed. Ever since you loved her. 

Fal. I have loved her ever since I saw her ; 
and still I see her beautiful. 

Speed. If you love her, you cannot see her. 

Fal. Why? 

Speed. Because love is blind. 0, that you had 
mine eves ; or vour own eves had the lis;hts they 
were wont to have, when you chid at sir Proteus 
for g<jing ungartered ! 

Fal. What should I see then ? 

Sp''ed. Your own present folly, and her pass- 
ing deformity : for he, being in love, could not 
see to garter his hose ; ' anu you, being in love, 
cannot see to put on your hose. 

Fal. Belike, boy, then you are in love ; for 
last morning you could not sec to wipe my shoes. 

Speed. True, sir ; I was in love with my bed : 
I thank you, you swing'd me for my love, which 
makes me the bolder to chide you for yours. 

Fal. In conclusion, I stand affected to her. 

Speed. I would you were set ; so your affec- 
tion would cease. 

/ «/. uight she enjoined n>c to write 
some lines to one she loves. 

Speed. And have you ? 

Fal. I have. 

Speed. Arc they not lanu-ly writ ? 

Fal. No, boy, but us wt II as I can i]<. them ; 
Peace, here she conies. 

Enter Silvia. 

Speed. excellent motion!' O cicc«*din;r 
puppet! now will he interpret to her.'' 

Fal. Madam aud mistress, a thousand g>M>d- 

Speed. O, 'give ye good even 1 here 's a million 
of manners. 

Si/. Sir Valentine aud servant.* to you 1w 

Spf-ed. He should give her iutcrc^t, aud hlie 
gives it him. 

Fal, As you enjoin'd me, I have writ jrour 
Unto the secret nameless friend of yours ; 
Which I was much unwilling to j)nHee(i in. 
But for my duty to your ladyship. 

Sil. I thank you, gentle servant ; 't u very 
clerkly done. 

Fal. Now trust me, madam, it came hardly 
For, being ignorant to whom it goes, 
I writ at random, very doubtfully. 

Sil. Perchance you think loo much of so much 
pains ? 

Fal. No, madam ; so it stead you, I will write, 
Please you command, a thousand times as much : 
And yet, — 

Sil. A pretty period ! Well, I guess the sequel ; 
And yet I will not name it: — and yet 1 care 

not ; — 
And yet take this agjiin ; — and yet I thank \. 
Meaning henceforth to trouble you no mot. 

Speed. And yet you will; aud yet anodut 
yet. [Jiidr 

Fal. What means tour ludvship? do you not 
Uke it ? ' 

.9/7. Yes, yes ; tiie lines are ntly writ : 

But since unwillingly, take th i ; 

Nay, take them. 

Fal. Madam, ihcv are for vou. 
Sil. Ay, ay, you writ them, sir, at my rcq>n-t 
But I will none of them ; they arc for you 
I would have had them writ more movingly. 

■ Motion. A .w. Silt>a ii «hf ' 

Valrntimr wiil , r hfr. The m*»'cr 

w»j, in Sbakipcrc t tujic. ofUo cAllvd InUTprttcr !■• I'lf 

b r»pell «n<l C ni»>rl<lj» «ltl- r»» ••"*« tpttthtt ol 
Sp^»«: «• \Andt. 

Act II ] 


[Scene IIJ. 

Val. Kease you, I '11 write your ladyship an- 
Sil. And w en it 's writ, for my sake read it 
over : 
And if it please you, so : if not, why so. 

Fal. If it please me, madam ! what then ? 

Sil. \y\\s, if it please you, take it for your 
And so good morrow, servant. ]_ExU Silvia. 

Speed. jest unseen, inscrutable, invisible, 
As a nose ou a man's face, or a weathercock on 

a steeple ! 
My master sues to her ; and she hath taught her 

lie being her pupil, to become her tutor. 
excellent device! was there ever heard a 

That my master, being scribe, to himscK should 
write the letter ? 

VaL How now, sii-? what are you reasoning 
with yourself ? 

Speed. Nay, I was rhyming ; 't is you that have 
the reason. 

Fal. To do what ? 

Speed. To be a spokesman from madam SUvia. 

Val. To whom ? 

Speed. To yourself : why, she wooes you by a 

Val. What figure ? 

Speed. By a letter, I should say. 

Val. Why, she hath not writ to me ? 

Speed. What need she, when she hath made 
you write to yourself i" Why, do you not per- 
ceive the jest? 

Val. No, believe me. 

Speed. No believing you indeed, sir : But did 
you perceive her earnest ? 

Val. She gave mo none, except an angry word. 

Speed. Why, she hath given you a letter. 

Val. That 's the letter I writ to her friend. 

Speed. And that letter hath she deliver'd, and 
there an end. 

Val. I would, it were no worse. 

Speed. 1 '11 warrant you 't is as well. 

For often have yo\i writ to her; and she, in modesty, 
Or eUc for want of idle time, could not again reply; 
Or fcnrinK cUe some messenger, that mi^ht her mind 

llcncir h.ith tauRht her love himself to write unto 

her lover. — 

All this I speak in print," for in print I found 

Why muse you, sir? 'tis dinner time. 

» In print With exac'ncss. Speed if repealing, 
afTcCs to be rt-peatirg, some lines which he hss read. 


Val. 1 have dined. 

Speed. Ay, but hearken, sir ; though the came- 
leon Love can feed on the air, I am one that am 
nourished by my victuals, and would fain have 
meat. 0, be not like your mistress ; be moved, 
be moved.^ [Exeunt. 

SCENE II.— Verona. A Room in Julia'.s 


Enter Pkoteus and Julia. 

Fro. Have patience, gentle Julia, 
////. I must, where is no remedy. 
Pro. When possibly I can, T will return. 
Jul. If you turn not, you will return the 
sooner : 
Keep this remembrance for thy Julia's sake. 

{Giving a ring. 
Pro. Why then we '11 make exchange ; ^ here, 

take you this. 
Jul. And seal the bargain with a holy kiss. 
Pro. Here is my hand for my true constancy ; 
And when that hour o'erslips me in the day. 
Wherein I sigh not, Julia, for thy sake. 
The next ensuing hour some foul mischance 
Torment me for my love's forgetfuluess ; 
My father stays my coming ; answer not ; 
The tide is now : nay, not thy tide of tears ; 
Tliat tide will stay me longer than I should : 

{E.vit Julia. 
Julia, farewell. — Wliat! gone without a word? 
Ay, so true love should do : it cannot speak ; 
Eor truth hath better deeds than words to grace 

Enter Panthino. 

Fan. Sir Proteus, you are staid for. 
Fro. Go ; I come, I come : — 
Alas 1 this parting strilccs poor lovers dumb. 


SCENE \\\.— The same. A Street. 

Enter Launce, leading a Bog. 

Laun. Nay, 't will be this hour ere I have done 
weeping ; all the kind of the Launces have this 
very fault : I have received my proportion, like the 
prodigious son, and am going with sir Proteus to 
the Imperial's court. I think Crab my dog be 
the sourcst-naturcd dog that lives : my mother 
weeping, my father wailing, my sister crying, 
our maid a howling, our cat wringing her hands, 
and all our house iu a great perplexity, yet did 

• Be moved. Have compassion on me. 


Act II.] 


[«rsst 1\ 

not this cruel-hearted cur shed one tear ; he is u 
stone, a very pebble-stone, aud has uo more pity 
in him than a dog : a Jew would have wept to 
have seen our parting ; why, my grandam having 
no eyes, look you, wept herself blind at my part- 
ing. Nay, 1 'II shew vou the miuiner of it : Tliis 
shoe is my father; — no, this left shoe* is my 
father ; — no, no, this left shoe is my mother ; — 
nay, that cannot be so neither : — yes, it is so, it 
is SO; it hath the worser sole; This shoe, with 
the hole in it, is my mother, and this my father ; 
A vengeance on't ! there 't is : now, sir, this staff 
is my sister; for, look you, she is as white as a 
lily, and as small as a wand : this hat is Nan, 
our maid; I am the dog: — no, the dog is him- 
self, and I am the dog, — 0, the dog is me, and 
I am myself; ay, so, so. Now come I to my 
father; Father, your blessing ; now should not 
the shoe speak a word for weeping ; now should 
I kiss my father ; well, he weeps on : — now 
come I to my mother, (0, that she could speak 
now !) like a wood* woman ; — well, I kiss her ; — 
why, there 'tis; here's my mother's breath up 
and down ; now come I to my sister ; mark the 
moan she makes : now the dog ail this while sheds 
not a tear, nor speaks a word ; but see how 1 lay 
the dust with my tears. 

Enter Pantuiuo. 

Pan. Launce, away, away, aboard; thy mas- 
ter is shipped, and thou art to post after with 
oars. What 's the matter ? why weep'st thou, 
man? Away, ass; you'll lose the tiae, if you 
tarry any longer. 

Laitn. It is no matter if the tied were lost ; 
for it is the unkindest tied** that ever man tied. 

Pan. What 's the unkindest tide ? 

Laun. Why, he that 's tied here ; . Crab, my 

Pan. Tut, man, 1 mean thou 'It lose the flood : 
and, in losing the flood, lose thy voyage ; and, in 
losing thy voyage, lose thy master ; and, iu losing 
thy master, lose thy service ; and, in losing thy 
service, — ^Vliy dost thou stop my mouth ? 

Laun. For fear thou should'st lose thy tongue. 

Pan. Where should I lose my tongue ? 

Laun. In thy tale. 

Pan. In thy tail? 

Laun. Lose the tide, and the voyage, and the 
master, and the service, and the tied!" Why, 

» Wood. Mad ; wild. 

i> This quibble, according to Steevens, U found in Lyly"« 
Endvmion, 1591. 

c We give the punctuation of the original edition. Ma- 
lone prir.ts the passage thus : — 

" Lose the tide, and the %o)age, and the master, and the 
•ervice: and the tide 1" 

CoMEDiEi — Vol. I D 

man, if the river were dry. I am able to fill il 
with my tears ; if the wind were down, 1 could 
drive the lx)at M'itli my sigLs. 

Pan. Come, come away, man ; 1 was scut to 
call thee. 

Ltun. Sir, cjdl me what thou darcst. 

Pan. Wdt thou go ? 

Linn. Well, I will go. [Aj#/.«/. 

SCENE IV.— Milan. A AVw-. iu the Duki'j 

Enter V.vLENTl.NE, SiLVl.v, TuLKlo, and Si'KKU 

Sil. Servant. 

Val. Mistress. 

Speed. Master, sir Thurio frowns on you. 

I'til. Ay, boy, it's for love. 

Speed. Not of you. 

Jul. Of my mistress then. 

Speed. 'T were good you knocked him. 

Sil. Servant, you are sad. 

J'al. Indeed, madam, I seem so. 

Thu. Seem you that you are not r 

TuL na{)ly I do. 

Thu. So do counterfeits. 

Tal. So do you. 

Thu. What seem I, that I am not ? 

Val. Wise. 

Thu. What instance of the contrary r 

Val. Your folly. 

Thu. And how quote'* you my folly? 

Val. I quote '' it in your jerkin. 

Thu. Mv jerkin is a doublet.^ 

J'al. Well, then, I 'U double your foUy. 

Thu. How? 

Sil. "What, angry, sir Tliurio P do you change 
colour ? 

Val. Give him leave, madiim; he is a kind 
of cameleon. 

Thu. That hath more mind to feed on youi 
blood, than live in your air. 

Val. You have said, sir. 

Thu. Ay, sir, and done too, for this time. 

Val. I know it well, sir ; you always end crc 
you begin. 

vice;" .1 
I to T 

»*S^-- '■■ ■ , ,_ 

tied were Io»t ; ' — no now » 

voviRe. and the master, and ; 

the original there in no difference i t) ■ 

two words. Mr. U) co w) «, " none of t 

» Quote. To mark. .. . ■ c,...,>, -_/— • 

b (. - " ■'. pronounced coU. from the oM French ccltr^ 

He: .Ulc.-I cooi it in your irrW-.-your short 



Act II. J 

Sir A fine vollev of words, gentlemen, and 
quickly shot off. 

Fal. 'T is indeed, madam ; we tliank the giver. 

Si/. Who is that, servant ? 

FaL Yourself, sweet lady; for you gave the 
fire : sir Tliurio borrows his \rit from your lady- 
ship's looks, and spends what he borrows, kindly 
in your company. 

T/iu. Sir, if you spend word for word with 
nic, I shall make your wit bankrupt. 

Fill. I know it well, sir : you have an exche- 
quer of words, and, I think, no other treasure 
to give your followers; for it appears by their 
bare liveries that they live by your bare words. 

Sil. No more, gentlomon, no more; here 
comes my father. 

En/er Duke. 

Didr. Now, daughter Silvia, you are hard 
Sir Valentine, your father 's in good health : 
What say you to a letter from your friends 
Of nuieh good news ? 

Fal. Mj lord, I will be thankful 

To any happy messenger from thence. 

Didc. Know you Don Antonio, your country- 

Fal. Ay, my good lord, I know the gentleman 
To bo of worth, and worthy estimation. 
And not without desert so well reputed. 

I)/i/,e. llatli he not a son ? 

Fal. Ay, my good lord ; a son, that well 
The honour and regard of such a father. 

/>ule. You know him well? 

Fal. I know him, as myself; for from our 
Wc have convers'd, and spent our hours together: 
And though myself have been an idle truant, 
Omitting the sweet benefit of time 
To clothe mine age with angel-like perfection. 
Yet hath sir Proteus, for that's his name. 
Made use and fair advantage of his days ; 
His years l)nt young, l)ut his experience old ; 
His head unmcUnw'd, biit his judgment ripe; 
And, rn a word, (for far behind his worth 
Ccmc all the praises that I now bestow,) 
He is conn)lctc in feature,'' and in mind. 
With all good grace to grace a gentleman. 

" Kneir, in folio; know, Dyeo. 

•> Feature (fomi or fa.sliioii; was applied to the body as 
w«ll AS the face. Thin, In Gowcr, — 

" Mkc to n woman in scmblnnce 
Of fontiircand of coiinlcnaiicf." 

And Inter, in " All Ovid's Elegies, by C. M." (Christopher 

" I fly her lust, but follow beauty's creature, 
I lo«th her manners, love her body's feature." 





him then according 

it had 
to his 

Beshrew me, sir, but if he make this 
He is as worthy for an empress' love. 
As meet to be an emperor's counsellor. 
Well, sir ; this gentleman is come to me, 
With commendation from great potentates ; 
And here he means to spend his time a-while : 
I tliiuk, 't is no unwelcome news to you 
Fal. Should I have wish'd a 

been he. 
Dtilce. Welcome 
worth ; 
Silvia, I speak to you : and you, sir Thurio : — 
For Valentine, 1 need not 'cite him to it : 
I'll send liira hither to you presently. 

\_Exit Duke. 
Fal. This is the gentleman, I told your lady- 
Had come along with me, but that his mistress 
Did hold his eyes loek'd in her crystal looks. 
Sil. Belike, that now she hath enfranchis'd 
Upon some other pawn for fealty. 

Fal. Nay, sure I think she holds them pri- 
soners still. 
Sil. Nay, tlicn he should be blind ; and, being 
How could he see his way to seek out you ? 
Fal. Why, lady, love hath twenty paii* of eyes. 
l^hu. They say, that love hath not an eye at 

aU— ' 
Fal. To see such lovers, Thurio, as yourself ; 
Upon a homely object love can wink. 

E7ite>- Proteus. 

Sil. Have done, have done ; here comes the 

Fal. Welcome, dear Proteus ! — Mistress, T 
beseech you, 
Confirm his welcome with some special favour. 

Sil. His worth is warrrant for his welcome 
If this be he you oft have wish'd to hear from. 

Fal. Mistress, it is : sweet lady, entertain hiin 
To be my fellow-servant to your ladyship. 

Sil. Too low a mistress for so high a servant. 

Fro. Not so, sweet lady; but too mean a 
To have a look of such a worthy mistress. 

Fal. Leave off discourse of disability r — 
Sweet lady, entertain him for your servant. 

Pro. My duty will I boast of, nothing else. 

Sil. And duty never yet did want his meed ; 
Servant, you arc welcome to a worthless mistress. 

Pro. I '11 die on him that says so, but youi'self. 

Act II.] 


rsctRi IV. 

Si/. That you are welcome ? 

Pro. No ; that you arc worthless. 

Enter Servant. 

Ser. Madaui, my lord your father would speak 
with you." 

Sil. I wait upon his pleasure. lExii Servant. 
Come, sir Thurio, 
Go with me : — Ouce more, new servant, welcome : 
I '11 leave you to confer of liome affairs ; 
When you have done, we look to hear from you. 

Fro. We '11 both attend upon your ladyship. 
[E.reuH( Silvia, Tiiuiuo, and Speed. 

Fal. Now, tell me, how do all from whence 
you came ? 

Pro. Your friends are well, and have them 
much commended. 

Fal. And how do yours ? 

Pro. I left them all in health. 

Fal. How does your lady ? and how thrives 
your love ? 

Pro. My tales of love were wont to weary you ; 
I know you joy not in a love-discourse. 

Fal. Ay, Proteus, but that life is altcr'd now : 
I have done penance for contemning love ; 
Whose high imperious thoughts have punish'd me 
With bitter fasts, with penitential groans. 
With nightly tears, and daily heart-sore sighs; 
For, in revenge of my contempt of love, 
Love hatli chas'd sleep from my enthralled eyes. 
And made them watchers of mine owni hcai-t's 

0, gentle Proteus, love 's a mighty lord ; 
And hath so humbled me, as, 1 confess. 
There is no woe to his correction,'' 
Nor to his service no such joy on earth ! 
Now, no discourse, except it be of love ; 
Now can I break my fast, dine, sup, and sleep. 
Upon the very naked name of love. 

Pro. Enough ; I read your fortune in your eye : 
Was this the idol that you worship so? 

Fal. Even she ; and is she not a heavenly saint ? 

Pro. No ; but she is an earthly paragon. 

Fal. Call her divine. 

Pro. I will not flatter her. 

Fa!. 0, flatter me ; for love delights in praises. 

Pro. When I was sick, you gave me bitter 
pUls ; 
And I must minister the like to you. 

Fal. Then speak the truth by her; if nftt 
Yet let her be a principality, 
Sovereiim to all the creatures on the ear*.h. 


» This speech is given to Thurio in the folio. Theobald 
assigned it to a servant. Mr. White says Thurio is righ'., 
as in the poorly-appointed stag? of Shakspcre's time Thurio 
might act as a messenger. 

»> There is no woe compared to h s correction. 


Pro. Except my mistrcRs. 

Fal. Sweet, except not any ; 

Except thou will except against my love. 

Pro. Have I not reason to pri-fur mine own? 

Fal. And I will hi-lp thct- t<j prefer her too : 
She shall be digniliid with this high honour, — 
To bear my lady's train; lest the base earth 
Should from her vesture clianee to steal a kiss, 
And, of so great a favour growing proud, 
Disdain to root the summer-swelling floMer, 
And make rnugli winter everliuiliugly. 

Pro. ^Vhy, Valeutine, wlial braggardism ib 
this ? 

Fal. Pardon me, Proteus : all I can i.s nothing 
To her, whose worth makes otiier wortliies* no- 
thing ; 
She is alone. 

Pro. Then let her alone. 

Fal. Not for the world : why, man, she ia 
mine own ; 
And I as rich in having sucli a jewd. 
As twenty seas, if all their sand were pearl. 
The water nectar, and the rocks pure gold. 
Forgive me, that I do not dream on thci-, 
Because thou sccst me dote upon my love. 
yiy foolish rival, that her father likes, 
Only for his possessions are so huge, 
Is gone with her along; and I must after, 
For love, thou know'st, is full of jealousy. 

Pro. But she loves you ? 

Fal. Ay, and we arc betrolh'd ; 

Nay, more, our marriage hour, 
With all the cunning manner of otir flight, 
Determin'd ot : how I must climb her window ; 
The ladder made of cords; and all the means 
Plotted, and 'greed on, for my happines.s. 
Good Proteus, go with me to my chamber, 
In these aflfairs to aid me with thy counsel. 

Pro. Go on before; I shall inquire you forth : 
I must unto the road,'' to disembark 
Some necessaries that 1 needs must use; 
And then 1 '11 presently attend you. 

Fal. Will vou make haste? 

Pro. I will.— [Eril Val. 

Even as one heit another heat expels. 
Or as one nail l)y strength drives out another, 
So the remembrance of my former love 
Is by a newer object quite forgotten. 
Is it her mien "^ or Valentinus' praise, 

» .Mr. While printSB-or/Aoj, and »ajriirorrt</j li a palpable 
ininprint, though hithrrlo unnoticed. 

!• Road. '>i"-n r'.irtv>iir 

c Tlic r ■ • 


T' ■ • ■-■' 

• f 

Stance that mim wa*, in i»hak*t«i«* lime, »(><-•( m*m4. 


Act II.] 



Her true perfection, or my false transgression, 
That makes me reasonless, to reason thus ? 
She 's fair; and so is Julia, that I love ;— 
That I did love, for now my love is thaw'd ; 
Wliich, like a waxen image 'gainst a fire, 
Bears no impression of the thing it was. 
Mcthuiks, my zeal to Valentine is cold ; 
And that I love him not, as I was wont : 

! but I love his lady too, too much ; 
And that 's the reason I love him so little. 

1 low shall I dote on her with more advice, 
That thus without advice begin to love her? 
'T is but her picture *'' I have yet beheld, 
And tiiat hath dazzled '' my reason's light ; 
15ut when I look on her perfections, 
Tlierc is no reason but I shall be blind. 

If I can check my erring love, I will ; 

If not, to compass her I '11 use my skill. [£'«''• 

SCENE N.—The same. A Street. 
Tinier Spe^d and Launce. 
Speed. Launce! by mine honesty, welcome 
to Milan. = 

Laun. Eorswear not thyself, sweet youth ; for 
I am not welcome. I reckon this always— that 
a man is never undone till he be hanged ; nor 
never welcome to a place till some certain shot 
be paid, and the hostess say, welcome. 

Speed. Come on, you mad-cap, I'll to the 
ale-house with you presently; where, for one 
shot of five-pence, thou shalt have five thousand 
welcomes. But, sirrah, how did thy master part 
with Madam Julia ? 

Imhii. Marry, after they closed in earnest, 
they parted very fairly in jest. 
Speed. But shall she marry him ? 
L(tun. No. 

Speed, llow then? shall he marry her? 
Laun. No, ncitlier. 
Speed. What, are they broken ? 
J/inn. No, they are both as whole as a fish. 
Speed. Wliy then, how stands the matter with 
them P 

iMitn. Marry, thus; when it stands well with 
him, it stands well with her. 

S]>red. What an ass art thou! I understand 

thcc Qot ! 

Jxtiin. Wliat a block art thou, that thou can'st 
not ! My slalT understands mc. 

» Picture. Her person, which I have seen, has shewn 
mc her " pTfo'tion* " only as a picture. Dr. Johneon 
rcceiTe< ' ~>o" i" b literal sense. 

b T)n: '■' u«c(l as a Irisylljihlc. 

r "•' ■ .■■'■•- ■■; T-' "11 I'ndun of the original, 

„, riitcn the play before he 

y^^ ^_ ality. For the same rca- 

loii, Verona is retained in Art. 1 (note <j, p. 43). 

^/;^fr/. Wliatthousay'st? 
Laun. Ay, and what I do, too : look thee, I 11 
but lean, and my staff understands me. 
Speed. It stands under thee, indeed. 
Laun. Why, stand under and understand is 

all one. 

Speed. But tell me true, wil 't be a niatch i _ 

Ldioi. Ask my dog : if he say, ay, it will ; if 
he say, no, it will ; if he shake his tail, and say 
nothing, it will. 

Speed. Tlie conclnsion is then, that it will. 

Laun. Thou shalt never get such a secret 
from me but by a parable. 

Speed. 'T is well that I get it so. But, Launce, 
how say'st thou, that my master is become a 
notable lover ? 

Laun. I never knew him otherwise. 

Speed. Thau how ? 

Laun. A notable lubber, as thou reportest 

him to be. 
Speed. Why, thou whoreson ass, thou mis- 

takest me. 

Laun. Why, fool, I meant not thee, I meant 
thy master. 

Speed. I tell thee, my master is become a hot 


Laun. Why, I tell thee, I care not though he 
burn himself in love. If thou wilt, go with me 
to the ale-house ; if not, thou art an Hebrew, a 
Jew, and not worth the name of a Christian. 

Speed. Why? 

Laun. Because thou hast not so much chanty 
in thee, as to go to the ale "■ with a Christian : 
Wilt thou go ? 

Speed. At thy service. {Exeunt. 

SCENE Yl.—T/ie same. J Room in the Palace. 
Enter Photeus. 
Pro. To leave my Julia, shall I be forsworn ; 
To love fair Silvia, shall I be forsworn ; 
To wrong my friend, I shall be much forsworn ; 
And even that power, which gave me fii'st my 

Provokes me to this threefold pen-jury. 
Love bade me swear, and love bids me forswear . 
sweet-suggesting love, if thou hast sinn'd, 
Teach me, thy tempted subject, to excuse it. 
At first I did adore a twiidiling star, 
But now I worship a celestial sun. 
Unhccdful vows may hecdfully be broken ; 
And he wants wit, that wants resolved will 

••^ Air. A rural festival, ortentimes connected with the 
holidays of the Church, as a Whitson ale. Launce calls 
Speed'a Jew because he will not go to the Ale (the Churcli 
feast) with a Christian. 

Act ir.] 



To leara his wit to exchange the bad for bettor. — 
Fye, fve, uurevereiul tongue ! to call her had, 
AVhosc sovereignty so oft thou hast preferr'd 
With twenty thousand soul-confiniiing oaths. 
I caimot leave to love, and vet I do: 
But there I leave to love, where I should love. 
Julia I lose, and Valentine I lose: 
If I keep them, 1 needs must lose myself; 
If I lose them, thus find I by their loss. 
For Valentine, myself: for Julia, Silvia. 
I to myself am dearer than a friend : 
For love is still most precious in itself: 
And Silvia, witness heaven, that made her fair ! 
Shews Julia but a swarthy Ethiope. 
I will forget that Julia is alive, 
llememb'ring that my love to her is dead ; 
And Vidcntine 1 '11 hold an enemy, 
Aiming at Silvia as a sweeter friend. 
I cannot now prove constant to myself, 
\Yithout some treachery used to Valentine : — 
This night, he meancth with a corded ladder 
To climb celestial Silvia's ehamber-wisulow ; 
Myself in counsel, his competitor : 
Now presently I '11 give her father notice 
Of their disguising, and pretended" flight ; 
Who, all enraged, will banish Valentine ; 
For Thurio, he intends, shall wed his daughter : 
But, Valentine being gone, I'll quickly cross. 
By some sly trick, blunt Thurio's dull pro- 
Love, lend nic wings to make my purpose swift. 
As thou hast lent nie wit to plot this drift ! [Krif. 

SCENE VII.— Verona. A Room in Julia'* 

Enter Julia and Lucetta. 

Jul. Counsel, Lucetta ! gentle girl, assist me ! 
And, even in kind love, I do conjure thee, — 
Who art the tablc^ wherein all my thoughts 
Are visibly character'd and engrav'd, — " 
To lesson me ; and tell me some good mean. 
How, with my honour, I may undertidce 
.\ journey to my loving Proteus. 

Luc. Alas ! the way is wearisome and long. 

Jul. A true-devoted pilgrim*" is not weary 
To measure kingdoms with his feeble steps ; 
Much less shall she that hath love's wings to fly; 
And when the flight is made to one so dear, 
Of such divine perfection, as sir Proteus. 

Luc. Better forbear, till Proteus make return. 

Jul. 0, know'st thou not, his looks are my 
soul's food ? 

• Pretended, — intended. 

Pity tlie dearth tiiat I have pined in, 
By lunging for tliat food so long a time. 
Didst thou but know the inly touch of love. 
Thou would'.st as soon go kindle fire with snow, 
As seek to (pieneh the fire of love with words. 

Luc. I do not seek to quench your love's hot 
fire ; 
l>iit qualify the (Ire's extreme ragt, 
Lest it shoulil burn above the bounds of reason. 

Jul. The more thou dnmm'st it up, the more 
it burns ; 
The current, that with gentle murmur glides, 
Thou know'st, being stopp'd, impatiently doth 

But, when his fair course is not hindered, 
He makes sweet music with the enamcl'd stones. 
Giving a gentle kiss to every sedge 
He ovcrtaketh in his pilgrimage ; 
And so by many winding nooks he strays, 
With willing sport, to the wild ocean. 
Then let me go, and hinder not my course : 
I '11 be as patient a.s a gentle stream, 
And make a pastime of each weary step. 
Till the last step have brought me to my love ; 
And there I '11 rest, a.s, after much turmoil, 
A blessed soul doth in Elysium. 

Luc. But in what habit will you go along? 

Jul. Not like a woman ; for I would prevent 
The loose encounters of lascivious men : 
Gentle Lucetta, fit me with such weeds 
As may beseem some well-reputed page." 

Luc. Why then your ladyship must cut your 

Jul. No, girl ; I '11 knit it up in silken strings, 
With twenty odd conceited true-love knots :'- 
To be fantastic, may become a youth 
Of greater time than I shall show to be. 

Luc. Wliat fashion, madam, shall I make your 
breeches ? 

Jul. That fits as well, as — " tell me, good my 
" Wliat compass will you wear your farthingale P'» 
Wliy, even that fashion thou best lik'st, Lucetta. 

Luc. You must needs have them with a cod- 
piece, madam. 

////. Out, out, Lucetta! that will be ill- 

Luc. A round hose, madam, now 's not worth 
a pin. 
Unless you have a cod-piece to stick pins on. 

Jul. Lucetta, as thou lov'st me, let me have 
What thou think'st meet, and is most mannerly : 
But tell me, wench, how will the world repute mc, 
For undertaking so unstaid a journey ? 
I fear mc, it will make mc scandaliz'd. 


Act II.] 


[Scene VII. 

Luc. If you think so, then stay at borne, and 
go not. 

Jul. Nay, that I will not. 

Luc. Then never dream on infamy, but go. 
If Proteus like your journey, when you come. 
No matter who 's displeased, when you are gone : 
I fear mc, he will scarce be plcas'd willial. 

Jul. That is the least, Lucetta, of my fear : 
A thousand oaths, an ocean of his tears, 
And instances of infinite "of love. 
Warrant me welcome to my Proteus. 

Luc. All these are servants to deceitful men. 

Jul. Base men, that use them to so base effect ! 
Hut truer stars did govern Proteus' birth ! 

• Infinite, — infinity. The same form of e.xpression occurs 
in Chaucer: — " aUhough the life of it be stretched with 
inlinite of time." — Tlie reading we give is tliat of tlie fust 
folio. The common reading is tliat of the second folio ; — 
" Iiutaiiccd as inlinite." 

His words are bonds, his oaths are oracles; 
His love sincere, his thoughts immaculate ; 
Ilis tears, pure messengers sent from his heart ; 
His heart as far from fraud as heaven from eartli. 

Luc. Pray heaven, he prove so, when you 
come to him ! 

Jul. Now, as Ihou lov'st me, do him not that 
To bear a hard opinion of his truth : 
Only deserve my love, by loving him ; 
And presently go with me to my clianiber. 
To take a note of what I stand in need of. 
To furnish me upon my longing journey. 
All that is mine I leave at thy dispose. 
My goods, my lands, my reputation ; 
Oidy, in lieu thereof, dispatch me hence : 
Come, answer not, but to it presently ; 
I am impatient of my tarriancc. ^Exeunt. 


' Scene I. — "Si/, your (jlove !' 

Gloves finely perfumed were bro\ight from 
Italy as presents in the sixteeuth century. " A 
pair of sweet gloves " is luentioued in an inven- 
tory of apparel at Hampton Cmut, temii. Henry 

^ Scene I,—" Beggar at JTalhwmas." 

If we were to look only at the severe statutes 
against mendicancy, we might suppose that, at the 
period when Shakspere thus described what he 
must have commonly seen, there were no beggars 
in the land but the licensed beggars, which these 
statutes permitted. Unlicensed beggars were, by 
the statute of lo7'2, to be punished, in the first 
instance, by grievous whipping, and burning 
through the gristle of the right ear ; and for 
second and third offences they were to suffer 
death as felons. It is clear that these penal laws 
were almost wholly inoperative; and Harrison, in 
his Description of Britam, prefixed to Holiushed, 


shews the lamentable extent of vagrancy amongst 
the " thriftless poor." In our notes uj)on King 

Lear, where Edgar dcHcnbos hiiii><olf an " P ■ r 
Tom, who is whipped from tylhing to tyth.i. . 
and stock'd, puninh'd, oikI imi>ri»'ou'il,'' thin 
subject is nuticed more at lengtii. Of tbo 
"valiant liegg;ir" — the comi>ouud <>f l>o;,'mir nnd 
thief, — Shakspero has given a i>erfoct i>ictur« 
in his " Autolycns," which al»o furniiilie* nn 
iutercsliug annotation. In the mean time wo 
give a curious repre»ent;ition <>f the l?4'L'L'!irni»n 
and BegL'arwnnmn, from a ni 
Roman dc la Unse, in tiie 11 
iNo 4125). The dato of the M.S. in ^ 
earlier than this play, and these b«-;^_ 
French ; but the co.ftuniu of rags is not a su 
for very nice distinctions either of time or pL. . 

' Scene I. — " He, being in lore, could not tte to 
garter his hose." 

Wo shall have frequent occasions of mentioning 
the costly garters of the sixteenth ccutur}-, nnd 
the various fa-thion of wearing them. Shaki«|Mjn' 
is here speakin'.; of those of liis own time, but iit 
the period to which wo havf 
of this j>lay, garters of 

round the largo sliwhed hose, botii nbovu unci 
below the kneo. To go ungartered was the 
common trick of a fantastic lover, who thereby 
implied ho was too nmch occupied by his {lOiuiiou 
to pay attention to his dress. 

* Scene 1.—" Sir Valentine utul servant." 

Sir J. Hawkins Hays, " Hero Silvia cal^ 1 
servant, anil again her gentle servant. i 
the commfiu language (jf lad let ti> tl ■ 
the time when Shakspere wrote." .'^ 
sevei-al examples of this. Henry James I'se, ni 
his " Comments on the Commentator- " >•,. r,! , r,.. 
that, " in the Noble Uentlemeu of 1' 
Fletcher, the Luly's gallant 1 i.^ r u :..■• u 

the dramatis per.sonie tin: •," and tiiat 

" mistress and servant are u 
in Dryden's play.s." It is • 
that Shakspere hero nscs the words in 
more general sense than that whieli 'xi i 
relations between two lovers. At the 
that Valentine calls Silvia mistresi. 
ho has written for her a letter. — " 
one she loves," — ni:' 
and what is still sti 
" servant " had not the foil 
meant a much more gener.ii 
introducing Protcua to Silvia, «i;. 

To be my fcllu ,;" 

and Silvia, consenting, ijays to Proieua, 

" Servant, you are welcome to a wonlilc»« miilre**." 



Now, when Silvia says this, which, according 
to the meaning which has been attached to the 
words servant and mistress, would be a speech of 
endearment, she had accepted Valentine really as 
her betrothed lover, and she had been told by 
Valentine that Proteus 

" Had come along with me, but that his mistress 
Did hold liis eyes lock'd in her crystal looks." 

It appears, therefore, that we must receive these 
words in a very vague sense, and regard them as 
titles of courtesy, derived, perhaps, from the 
chivniric tiujes, when many a harness'd knight 
and sportive troubadour described the lady whom 
they had gazed upon in the tilt-yard as their 
"rnistress," and the same lady looked npon each 
of the gallant train as a "servant" dedicated to 
the defence of her honour, or the praise of her 

•Scene II.—" Why then we'll make exchange" 
The priest in Twelfth Night (Act. V. Sc. I.), 
describes the ceremonial of bethrothing, for which 
the Catholic church had a ritual : 

" A contract of eternal bond of love, 
Confirm'd by mutual joinder of your hands, 
Attested by the holy close of lips, 
Strengthen'd by iiiterchangement of your rings." 

This contract was made, in private, by Proteus 
and Julia; and it was also made by Valentine 
and Silvia—" we are betroth'd." 

« SCENK III.—" This left shoe." 

A passage in King John also shews that each 
foot was formerly fitted with its shoe, a fiishion of 
tinquestiouable utility, which was revived many 

" Standing on slippers, which his nimble haste 
Had falsely thrust upon contrary feet." 

'ScKKE iy.—"M>jjerTcm is a doublet." 
The jerkin, or jacket, was generally worn over 
the doublet ; but occasionally the doublet was 
worn, and, in many instances, is confounded 
with th.! jerkin. Either had sleeves or not, as the 
wearer fancied ; for by the inventories and ward- 
robe accounts of the time, we find that the sleeves 
were frequently separate articles of dress, and 
attached to the doublet, jerkin, coat, or even 
woman's gown, by laces or ribbands, at the 
plcnsuro of the wearer. A "doblet jaquet" and 
hoxe <-,f V.luo velvet, cut upon cloth of gold, 
oiii I, and a" doblet hose and jaquet" of 

P'" . ''t, embroidered, and cut upon cloth of 

gold, and lined witli black satin, are entries in an 
inventory of the wardrobe of Henry VIII. 

In 15.'J5. ft jerkin of purjile velvet, with purple 
«»^'n "' idered all over with Venice 

K"l''. ^ , to the king by Sir Kichard 

Cromwell ; and aiiuthor jerkin of crimson velvet, 
with wide sleeves of the same coloured satin, is 
mentioned in the same inventoiy. 

• SCEXE VII.—" The lahU tcherein all my thourjhta 
A rt vitibly charactcr'd." 


The allusion is to the table-book, or tables, 
which were used, as at present, for noting down 
something to be remembered. Hamlet says : 
" Jly tables, — meet it is I set it down." 

They were made sometimes of ivory, and some- 
times of slate. The Archbishop of York, in 
Henry IV., says : 

" And, therefore, will he wipe his tables clean." 

The table-book of slate is engraved and de- 
scribed in Gesner's treatise, De Rerum Fossilium 
Figuris, 1565; and it has been copied in Douce's 

^ Scene VII. — ''And, even in hind love, I do con- 
jure thee." 

Malone prints the word conjure with an accent 
on •the first syllable, conjure. In the same way, 
in the next line but one, he marks the accent on 
chardcterd. Since the publication of our first 
edition we have been led, through a consideration 
of the many false theories which have prevailed 
as to the general versification of Shakspere, to be- 
lieve that this system of accenting words differently 
from their ordinary pronunciation, and constantly 
varying, is a false one. For example, in the passage 
before us, Malone prints 

"And, e'en in kind love, I do conjure thee." 

The emphasis must here be on Mndj and con. Eut 

" And, even in kind love, I do conjure thee." 

placing the emphasis on love and jure, and the 
metre is perfect enough, without such a variation 
from the common pi'onunciation. Upon a just 
metrical system there is no difficulty in such 
passages. Our opinion is much strengthened by 
the communication of a friend on this subject; 
and we therefore omit these arbitrary marks. 

'" Scene VII.—" A true devoted pilgrim." 

The comparison which Julia makes between the 
ardour of her passion, and the enthusiasm of tho 
pilgrim, is exceedingly beautiful. When travelling 
was a business of considerable danger and personal 
suffering, the pilgrim, who was not weary 

"To traverse kingdoms with his feeble steps," 
to encounter the perils of a journey to Rome, or 
Loretto, or Compostella, ov Jerusalem, was a person 
to be looked upon as thoroughly in earnest. 


In the time of Shakspere the pilgrimages to 
ihe tomb of St. Thomas h Becket, at Canterbury, 
wiiich Chaucer has rendered immortal, were dis- 
continued ; and few, perlia|K9, undertook the sea 
voyage to Jerusalem. But the pilgrim.igo to the 
shrine of St. James, or St. Jago, the patron-saint 
of Spain, at Compostella, w;is undertaken by all 
classes of Catholics. The house of our Lady at 
Loretto was, however, the great object of the 
devotee's vows ; and. at particular seasons, there 
were not fewer than two hundred thousand 
pilgrims visiting it at once. The Holy House 
(the Santa Casa) is the hou.^e in which the Blessed 
Virgin is said to have been born, in which she was 
betrothed to Joseph, and where the annunciation 
of the Angel was made. It is preteniled that it 
was carried, on the 9th of Jfay, 1291, by super- 
natural means from Galilee to Tei-sato, in Dal- 
matia ; and from thence removed, on the 10th of 
December, 1294, to Italy, where it was deposited 
in a wood at midnight. The Santa Casa (which 
now stands within the large church of Loretto) 
consists of one room, the length of which is 31 3 
feet, the breadth 13 feet, and the height 18 feet. 
On the ceiling is painted the As.sumption of the 
Virgin Mary ; and other paintings once adorned 
the walls of the apartment. On the west side is 
the window through which the Angel is said to 
huve entered the house ; and facing it, in a niche, 
is the inaage of the Virgin and Child, which was 
once enriched by the offerings of princes and de- 
votees. The mantle, or robe, which she had on 
was covered with innumerable jewels of inestim- 
able value, and she had a triple crown of gold 
er.riched with pearls and diamonds, givf.u her by 
Louis XIII. of France. The niche in which the 
figure stands was adorned with seventy-one lari;e 
Bohemian topazes, and on the right side of the 
image is an angel of cast gold, profusely enriched 
with diamonds and other gems. A great part of 
these treasures was taken by Pope Pius VII., in 
order to pay to France the sum extorted bv the 
treaty of Tolentino, in 1797. They have "been 
partially replaced since by new contributors, 
among whom have been Murat, Eugene Beau- 
hamois, and other members of the Bonaparte 
family. There are a few relics considered more 
valuable than the richest jewels that have been 

'-Scene VII.— " /•« hiit il up in silken strtngf. 

With twenty odd-conceited true-love knots." 

The accompanying heads — one from Boissard, 

earned away. Xotwithstanding the mean appear- 
ance of the walls within the Santa Casa, the out- 
side is encased, and adorned with the finest Carrara 
marble. This work was bogim in 1514, iu the 
pontificate of Leo X., and the House of our La-ly 
was consecrated in 1538. The expense of this 
casing amounted to 50,000 crowns, and the most 
celebrated sculptors of the age were employed. 
Bramante wiis the architect, and Bnccio B.mdinelli 
assisted in the sculptures. The whole Wiis com- 
pleted in 1579, in the pontificate of Gregor)' XIII. 
The munificent expenditure uj>on the house of 
our Lady at Loretto, had, prob ibly, contributed 
greatly to make the pilgrimage the most attnictivo 
in Europe, when Shakspere wrote. 

"Scene VII.- 

- " Such vtcds 

As may beseem some well-reputed page." 

" Such weeds" are here represented from a print 
after Paul Veronese. The original painting is, or 
was, in the French royal collection. 


" Habitus variarum Orbis Gentium, 15S1 ; " and 
the other from a print of the sixteenth century, 
may be supposed to illustrate the fashion of 
Shaksperc'.s own time here mentioned. 



SCENE I.— MQan. 

An Ante-room in the Duke'* 

Enter Duke, Tuurio, and Proteus. 

Duke. Sir Tlmrio, give ixs leave, I pray, 
awhile ; 
We have some secrets to confer about. 

\E.lil TUURIO. 

Now, tell nic, Proteus, what's your Avill with me? 
Pro. My gracious lord, that which I would 
The law of frieudship bids nie to conceal : 
But. when I call to mind your gracious favours 
Done to nic, undeserving as I am, 
My duly pricks mc on to utter that 
AV'hieh else no worldly good should draw from me. 
Know, worthy prince, sir Valentine, my friend, 
Thi.i night intends to steal away your daughter ; 
Myself am one made privy to the plot. 

I know you liave determin'd to bestow her 
On Tlmrio, whom your gentle daughter hates; 
And slioiilil 9l\c thus be stolen away from you, 

I I would be much vexation to your age. 
TliiKs, for my duty's sake, I rather chose 
To cross my friend in his intended drift, 
Than, by concealing it, heap on your head 

A pack of sorrows, which would press you down. 
Being unprc vented, to your timeless grave. 
Duke. Proteus, I thank thee for thine honest 
WTiich to roquite, CDiiiinaiid me while I live. 
This love of theirs myself have often seen, 

Haply, when they have judged me fast asleep ; 
And oftentimes have purpos'd to forbid 
Sir Valentine her company, and my court : 
But, fearing lest my jealous aim'' might err. 
And so, unworthily, disgrace the man, 
(A rashness that I ever yet have shunn'd,) 
I gave him gentle looks ; thereby to find 
That which thyself hast now disclos'd to me. 
And, that thou may'st perceive my fear of this, 
Knowing that tender youth is soon suggested,^ 
[ nightly lodge her in an upper tower. 
The key whereof myself have ever kept ; 
And thence she cannot be conve/d away. 

Pro. Know, noble lord, they have devis'd a 
How he her chamber-window will ascend, 
And with a corded ladder fetch her down ; 
For which the youthful lover now is gone. 
And this way comes he with it presently ; 
Where, if it please you, you may intercept him. 
But, good my lord, do it so cunningly. 
That my discovery be not aim'd at f 

« Aim. Steevens explains tliis noun as meaning gu-ss. 
Professor Craik says, "Aim, in old French, eijnn-, esmc, 
and cstme, is the san.e word af, esteem, and should, there- 
fore, siKnify properly a judgment or conjecture of the 
mind." 'Julius C'aBsar,'57. 

b Suggested — tempted. 

c Aimed at. Here the word is again stated, both by 
Steevens and Johnson, to mean, to guess. The common 
interpretation of aim, — to point at, to level at,— will, how- 
ever, cive the meaning of the passage quite as well. At 
first siglit it might appear that the word aim, which, literally 
or metaphorically, is ordinarily taken to mean the act of 
looking towards a definite object with a precise intention, 
cannot include the random determination of the mind which 
we imply by the word guess. But we must go a little fur- 
ther. The etymology of both words is somewhat doubtful. 

A.T 111.] 


[Scsaa 1. 

For love of you, uot hate unto my friend, 
llath made me publisher of this pretence* 
Duke. Upon mine lionour, he shall never 
That 1 had any light from thee of this. 

Pro. Adieu, my lord ; sii- Valentine is coming. 


Enter Valentine. 

Duke. Sir Valentine, whither away so fast ? 
Val. Please it your grace, there is a mes- 
That stays to bear my letters to my friend.s. 
And I am going !o deliver them. 
Duke. Be they of much import ? 
Val. The tenor of them doth but signify 
My health, and haiijiy being at your court. 
Duke. Nay, then no matter; stay with me a 
while ; 
I am to break with thee of some affairs. 
That touch me near, wherein thou must be secret. 
'T is not unknown to thee, that I have sought 
To match my friend, sir Thiirio, to my daughter. 
Val. I know it well, my lord ; and, sure, the 
AVerc rich and honourable; besides, the gen- 
Is full of virtue, bounty, worth, and qualities 
Beseeming such a wife as your fair dauglitcr : 
Cannot your grace win her to fancy him ? 
Duke. No, trust me; she is peevish, sullen, 
Proud, disobedient, stubboni, lacking duty ; 
Neither regarding that she is my cliild. 
Nor fearing me as if I were her father : 
And, may I say to thee, this pride of hers. 
Upon advice, hath drawn my love from her ; 
And, where^ I tiiought the remnant of mine age 

Aim is sapposcd to lie derived from ccslimare, to weigh 
attentively; (jue^s, from the Ans;lo-Saxon tcitt-an, wis, to 
think (See Kicliardson's Dictionary). Ilt-re th'j separate 
meanings of the two word^ almost slide into one and the 
same. It is certain that in the orii;inal and literal use of the 
word aim, in archery, w,i» meant the act of tl.(. mind 
in considering the various circumstances connected with the 
flight of the arrow, rather than the mere operation of the 
sense in painting at the mark. When Lock>ley, in Ivanhoe, 
telU his adversary, "You have not allowed for the wind, 
Hubert, or that would have been a better shot," ho fv.nii.ihes 
Hubert with a new element of calculation for his next aim. 
There is a passage of Ilishop Jewell: "He tliat seethe no 
marke must shoote by ayme." This certainly doei not mean 
mutt shoot at random — although it may mean mutt thoot by 
guat. — must shoot by cilcul.ition. To give aim, in archery, 
was the business of one who stood within view of the butts, 
to call out how near the arrows fell to the mark, — as " Wide 
on the bow-hand ; — wide on the shaft-hand : — short ; — gone." 
To give aim was, therefore, to give the knowledge of a fact, 
by which the intention, the aim, of the archer might be 
better regulated in future. In the fifth Act (4th scene) of 
this comedy, the passage 

" Behold her, that gave aim to all thy oaths," 
has reference to the aim-giver of the butts. 

• Pretence— iei'xgn. 

b Where — whereas. 

Should have been chcrishM by her ehildUke dutv. 

I n(jw am full resolvM to takt- a wife, 

.And turn her out to who will take her in. 

Then let her beauty be iter wedding-dower ; 

For me and my possessions she cslccms not. 

Vul. What would yuur grace have me to do 

in this ? 

Duke. There is a huly, sir, in .Milan, here,' 

Whont I alTeet ; but she is nice, and coy, 

.\n(i nought esteems my aged elotiuenci- . 

Now, therefore, would 1 have thee t«j my tutor, 

(For long agone I have forgot to court : 

Besides, the fashion of the time is chang'd ;) 

How, and which way, 1 may bestow myself, 

To be regarded in her sun-bright eye. 

Val. Win lier with gifts, if she resiicct not 

wonls ; 

Dumb jewels often, in their silent kind, 

More than quick words, do move a woman's 


Duke. But she did scorn a present tluit I sent 


Val. \ woman sometimes scorns what best 

contents her : 

Send her another; never give her o'er; 

For seoni at first makes after-love the more. 

If she do frown, 't is not in hate of you. 

But rather to beget more love in you : 

If she do chide, 'tis not to have you gone; 

For why, the fools are mad, if left alone. 

Take no repulse, whatever she doth say : 

For, get you gone, she doth not mean, utrutf ; 

Flatter, and praise, commend, extol their gniccs ; 

Though ne'er so black, say they have angels' 


Tliat man that hath a tongue, I say, is no man. 

If with his tongue ho cannot win a woman. 

Duke. But, she I mean is promis'd by her 


Lnto a youthful gentleman of worth ; 

.■Vnd kept severely from resort of men, 

That no man hath access by djiy to lier. 

Val. ^Vhy then I would resort to her by night. 

Duke. Ay, but the doors be lock'd, and keys 

kept safe. 

That no man hath recourse to her by night. 

y^al. What lets,** but one n>ay enter at her 

window ? 

Duke. Her chamber is aloft, far frum tim 

ground ; 

.Vnd built so shelving, that one cannot cliiub it 

Without apparent hazard of his life. 

Val. Why then, a ladder, quaintly made of cords, 

» Mr. Dyce prefers Mr rollicr** <■ 
"There is a I'djr in >l 
Mr. Halliwi-Il reads, " o/ Verooa." 
b £«<«— binders. 


Act km 


[Scene I. 

To cast up with a pair of anchoring hooks, 
Would serve to scale another Hero's tower, 
So bold Leander would adventure it. 

Duke. Now, as thou art a gentleman of blood, 
Advise me where I may have sucli a ladder. 
Val. When would you use it ? pray, sir, tell 

me that. 
Duke. This very night ; for love is like a child. 
That longs for every thing that he can cOrae by. 
f'al. By seven o'clock 1 '11 get you such a 

Duke. But, hark thee ; I will go to her alone ; 
How shall I best convey the ladder thither? 
;'«/. It will be light, my lord, that you may 
bear it 
L'ndcr a cloak, that is of any length. 
Duke. A cloak as long as thine will serve the 

turn ! 
Val. Ay, my good lord. 
Duke, i'licn let me sec thy cloak : 
I '11 get me one of such another length. 

Vtil. AVhv, any cloak will serve the turn, my 

Duke. How .shall I fashion mc to wear a 
cloak ? — 
I pray thee, let me feel thy cloak upon me.— 
What letter is this same? What's here?— To 

Silcia ? 
And here an engine fit for my proceeding ! 
I '11 be so bold to break the seal for once. [B^ads. 

My thoughts do harbour with my Silvia nightly ; 

And slaves ihey are to me, that send them flying: 
O, could their master come and go as lijjhtly, 

Himself would lodge, where senseless they are lying. 
My herald thoughts in thy pure bosom rest them ; 

While I, their king, that ihither them importune. 
Do cur»c the grace that with such grace hath blcss'd 

ncc.iusc myiclf do want my servants' fortune : 
I cur»c myself, for they are sent by mc. 

That they should harbour where their lord should be. 

What 's here ? 

Silvia, this night I will enfranchise thee. 

'T is so ; and here 's the ladder for the purpose. 
Why I'hatiton, (for thou art Mcrops' son,) 
Wilt thou aspire to guide the heavenly car, 
And witli thy daring folly burn the world ? 
Wilt thou reach stars, because they shine on thee ? 
Go, base intruder ! ovcr-wecning slave 1 
Bestow thy fawning smiles on cqurd mates ; 
And think my patience, more than thy desert. 
Is privilege fur thy departure hence : 
Thank tnc for this, more than for all the favours, 
Which, all too much, I have bcstow'd on thee. 
But if thou linger in my territories. 
Longer than swiftest expedition 

Will give thee time to leave our royal court, 

By heaven, my wrath shall far exceed the love 

I ever bore my daughter, or thyself. 

Be gone, 1 will not hear thy vain excuse. 

But, as thou lov'st thy lie, make speed from 

hence. [&«V Duke. 

Val. And why not death, rather than living 

torment ? 
To die, is to be banish'd from myself; 
And Silvia is myself : baui-sh'd from her. 
Is self from self : a deadly banishment ! 
What light is light, if Silvia be not seen ? 
What joy is joy, if Silvia be not by ? 
Unless it be to think that she is by, 
And feed upon the shadow of perfection. 
Except I be by Silvia in the night, 
There is no music in the nightingale ; 
Unless I look on Silvia in the day, 
There is no day for me to look upon : 
She is my essence ; and I leave to be, 
If I be not by her fair influence 
Foster' d, illumin'd, cherish'd, kept alive. 
I fly not death, to fly his deadly doom 
Tarry I here, I but attend on death ; 
But, fly I hence, I fly away from life. 

Enter Piioteus and Launce. 

Fro. Kun, boy, run, run, and seek him out. 
Laiin. So-ho ! so-ho ! 
Tro. What seest thou ? 
Laun. Him we go to find : there 's not a hair 
en's head, but 't is a Valentine. 
Pro. Valentine ? 
Val. No. 

Tro. Who then ? his spirit ? 
Val. Neither. 
Fro. What then ? 
VaL Nothing. 
Laun. Can nothing speak? Master, shall I 

strilce ? 
Fro. Who would' st thou strike ? 
Laun. Nothing. 
Fro. Villain, forbear. 
Laun. Why, sir, I '11 strike nothing : I pray 

Fro. Sirrah, I say, forbear : Friend Valentine, 

a word. 
Val. My ears are stopp'd, and cannot hear 
good news. 
So much of bad already hath possess'd them. 

Fro. Then in dumb silence will I bury mine, 
For they are harsh, untuneable, and bad. 
Val. Is Silvia dead ? 
Fro. No, Valentine. 
Val. No Valentine, indeed, for sacred Silvia ! — 

Act HI] 



Hath she forsworn me ? 

Pro. No, Valcutine. 

77//. No Viiloutme, if Silvia have forsworn 
mc ! — 
T\liat is your news ? 

Laun. Sir, there 's a proclamation that you are 

Pro. That thou ait bimish'd. 0, that's the 
news ; 
From hence, from Silvia, and from me thy friend. 

Val. O, I have fed upon tliis woe already. 
And now excess of it will make nic surfeit. 
Doth Silvia know that I am banished ? 

Pro. Ay, ay ; and she hath oiler'd to the doom, 
(Which, imi'cvers'd, stands in ciTcctual force,) 
A sea of melting pearl, which some call teai-s : 
Those at her father's churlish feet she tender'd ; 
With them, upon her knees, her humble self; 
Wringing her hands, whose whiteness so became 

As if but now they waxed pale for woe : 
But neither bended knees, pure hands held up. 
Sad sighs, deep groans, nor silver-shedding tears. 
Could penetrate her uneompassionate sire ; 
But Valentine, if he be ta'en, must die. 
Besides, her intercession chafd him so, 
When she for thy repeal was suppliant. 
That to close prison he eonnnandcd her. 
With many bitter tlireats of 'biding there. 

Vul. No more ; unless the next word that 
thou speak'st 
Have some malignant power upon my life : 
If so, I pray thee, breathe it in mine eai-, 
As ending anthem of my endless dolour. 

Pro. Cease to lament for that thou can'st not 
And study help for that which thou lanient'st. 
Time is the nurse and breeder of all good. 
Here if thou stay, thou canst not see thy love ; 
Besides, thy staying will abridge thy life. 
Hope is a lover's staff; walk hence with that. 
And manage it against despaii'iug thoughts. 
Thy letters may be here, though thou art hence : 
Which, being writ to me, shall be dclivcr'd 
Even in the milk-white bosom of thy love.' 
The time now serves not to expostulate : 
Come, I '11 convey thee through the city gate ; 
And, ere I part with thee, confer at large 
Of all that may concern thy love-affidrs : 
As thou lov'st Silvia, though not for thyself, 
Kcgard thy danger, and along with mc. 

Val. I pray thee, Launcc, an it' thou scest 
my boy. 
Bid him make haste, and meet me at the north- 

Pro. Go, sirndi, find liim out. Come, Va- 

I'al. my dear Silvia, ha[>less Valentine! 

[E.reioit Valentine and Pkoteus. 

L(/u>i. I am but a fool, look you ; and yet 1 
have the wit to think my master is a kind of a 
knave : but that 's all one, if he be but one knave, 
lie lives not now that knows mc to be in love : 
yet I am in love ; but a team of horse shall not 
pluck that from mc ; nor who 't is I love, and 
yet 't is a woman : but what woman, I will not 
tell myself ; and yet 't is a milkmaid ; yet 't is not 
a maid, for she hath had gossips : yet 't is a maid, 
fur she is her master's maid, and serves for 
wages. She hath more qualities than a water- 
spaniel, — which is much in a barc-christian. 
Here is the cate-log [Pulliiiff out a paper'] of 
her conditions. Imprimis, She can fetch and 
carry. Why, a horse can do no more : nay, a 
horse cannot fetch, but only carry ; therefore is 
she better than a jade. Item, She can milk ; 
look you, a sweet virtue in a maid with clean 

Enler Speed. 

Speed. How now, signior Launcc ? what news 
with your mastership ? 

Laun. With my master's ship? why it is at 

Speed. Well, your old vice still; mistake the 
word : What news then in your paper ? 

Laun. The blackest news that ever thou 

Speed. ^Vhy, man, how black ? 

Laun. Why, as black as ink. 

Speed. Let mc read them. 

Tmuu. Fye on thee, jolt-head ; thou canst not 

Speed. Thou best, I can. 

Jmuh. I will try thee : tell me this : 'Who 
begot thee ? 

Speed. Marry, the son of my grandfather. 

jMun. illiterate loiterer ! it was the son of 
thy grandmother : this proves, that thou canst 
not read. 

Speed. Come, fool, come : try mc in thy paper. 

Jjiun. There ; and St. Nichohis be thy speed !^ 

Speed. Imprimis, She can milk. 

Laun. Ay, that she can. 

Speed. Item, She brews good ale. 

Laun. And thereof comes the proverb,— 
Blessing of your heart, you brew good ale. 

Speed. Item, She can sew. 

Laun. That 's as much as to say, can she so ? 

Speed. Item, She can knit. 

Act Iir.] 


[Scene II. 

Laun. What need a mau care for a stock with 
a wench, when she can knit him a stock.'' 
Speed. Item, She can wash and sconr. 
Laun. A special virtue ; for then she need 
not be washed and scoured. 
Speed. She can spin. 

Jjoun. Then I may set tlic world on wheels, 
when she can spin for her living. 

Speed. Item, She hath many nameless virtues. 
Laun. Tliat 's as much as to say, bastard vir- 
tues ; that, indeed, know not their fathers, and 
therefore have no names. 
Speed. Here follow her vices. 
Laun. Close at the heels of her vii-tues. 
Speed. Item, She is not to be kissed fasting, 
in respect of her breath. 

Laun. Well, that fault may be mended with 
a breakfast : Head on. 
Speed. Item, She hath a siceet mouth. 
Laun. That makes amends for her sour breath. 
Speed. Item, She doth talk in her sleep. 
Ljuun. It 's no matter for that, so she sleep not 
in her talk. 
Speed. Item, She is slow in words. 
iMun. villain, that set this down among 
her vices 1 To be slow in words is a woman's 
only virtue : I pray thee, out with 't ; and place 
it for her chief virtue. 
Speed. Item, She is proud. 
Laun. Out with that too ; it was Eve's legacy, 
and cannot be ta'cn from her. 
Speed. Item, She hath no teeth. 
Laun. I care not for that neither, because I 
love crusts. 
Speed. Item, She is curst. 
Laun. Well ; the best is, she hath no teeth to 

Speed. She will often praise her liquor. 
Laun. If her liquor be good, she shall : if 
slic will not, I will ; for good things should be 

Speed. Item, She is too liberal. 
Imuh. Of her tongue she cannot; for that's 
writ down she is slow of : of her purse she shall 
not ; for that I '11 keep shut : now of another 
thing she may ; and that cannot I help. Well, 

Speed. Item, She hath more hair than wU}' 
and more faults than hairs, and more wealth than 

Laun. Stop there ; I '11 have her : she was 
mine, and not mine, twice or thrice in that last 
article : Rehearse that once more. 


» Slock. — Stocking. 

•> An old English proverb. 

Speed. Item, She hath more hair than wit, — 
Laun. More hair than wit, — it may be ; 1 '11 
prove it ; The cover of the salt hides the salt,^ 
and therefore it is more than the salt ; the hair 
that covers the wit, is more than the wit ; for 
the greater hides the less. "WHiat 's next ? 
Speed. — And more faults than hairs, — 
Ijaun. That 's monstrous : O, that that were 

Speed. — And more wealth than faults. 
Laun. Why, that word makes the faults gra- 
cious : Well, I '11 have her : And if it be a match, 
as nothing is impossible, — 
Speed. What then ? 

Laun. Why, then will I tell thee, — that thj 
master stays for thee at the north gate. 
Speed. Tor me ? 

Jjaun. For thee ? ay : who art thou ? he hath 
staid for a better man than thee. 
Speed. And must I go to him ? 
Latin. Thou must run to him, for thou hast 
staid so long, that going will scarce serve the 

Speed. Wliy didst not tell me sooner ? 'pox of 
your love-letters ! \_Exit. 

Lann. Now will he be swinged for reading my 
letter : An unmannerly slave, that will thrust 
himself into secrets ! — I '11 after, to rejoice in the 
boy's correction. [_Kvit. 

SCENE II.— Milan. A Room in the Duke'^ 

Enter Duke and Thurio ; Pkoteus behind. 

Duke. Sir Thurio, fear not but that she Mill 
love you, 
Now Valentine is banish'd from her sight. 

Thu. Since his exile she hath despis'd me most. 
Forsworn my company, and rail'd at me. 
That I am desperate of obtaining her. 

Duke. This weak impress of love is as a figure 
Trenched in ice ; which with an hour's heat 
Dissolves to water, and doth lose his form. 
A little time will melt her frozen thoughts. 
And worthless Valentine shall be forgot. — 
IIow now, sir Proteus ? Is your countryman, 
According to our proclamation, gone ? 

I^ro. Gone, my good lord. 

Duke. My daughter takes his going grievously. 

Pro. A little time, my lord, will kill that grief. 

Duke. So I believe ; but Thurio thinks not so. — 
Proteus, the good conceit I hold of thee, 
(For thou hast sho^vn some sign of good desert,) 
Makes me the better to confer with thee. 

Act 111 



Pro. Longer tliau I prove loyal to your grace, 
Let me not live to look upon your grace. 

Buke. Thou know'st, how willingly I would 
Tlie match between sir Thurio and my daughter. 

Pro. I do, my lord. 

Bide. And also, I tliink, thou art not ignorant 
llow she opposes her against my will. 

Pro. She did, my lord, when Valentine was here. 

Buke. Ay, and perversely she persevers so. 
What miglit we do, to make the girl forget 
The love of V;Uentine, and love sir Thiu-io ? 

Pro. The best way is, to slander Valentine 
"With falsehood, cowardice, and jioor descent ; 
Tiirce thinars that women highly hold in hate. 

Duke. Ay, but she'll think, that it is spoke in 

Pro. ks, if his enemy deliver it : 
Tlierefore it must, with circumstance, be spoken 
By one whom she esteemeth as his friend. 

Buke. Then you must undertake to slander him. 

Pro. And that, my lord, I sliall be lotii to do : 
'T is an ill office for a gentleman ; 
Especially, against his very" friend. 

Buke. "Wliere your good word cannot advantage 
Your slander never can endamage liim ; 
Therefore the office is indiCfcrcnt, 
Bein": entreated to it by your friend. 

Pro. You have prevail'd, my lord : if I can 
do it. 
By aught that I can speak in his dispraise, 
She shall not long continue love to him. 
But say, this weed her love from Valentine, 
it follows not that she will love sir Thurio. 

Thu. Therefore, as you unwind her love from 
Lest it should ravel, and be good to none, 
You nmst provide to bottom it on me ; *• 
Which must be done, by praising me as much 
As you in worth dispraise sir Valentine. 

Buke. And, Proteus, we dare trust you in this 
Because we know, on Valentine's report, 

■ Very. Tnie; real (vcnis). 

b This image, derived from the labours of the sempstress, 
had found iti way into English po<.-try, before tlie time of 
Shakspere : — 

" .\ botlom for your silk, it seems, 
My letters are become, 
Wliich oft with windiiiR off and on, 
Are wasted whole and some." 

Grange's Garden, 1557. 

You are already love's firm votary, 

And cannot soon revolt and change your mind. 

Upon this warrant siinll you have access, 

Wliere you with Silvia may confer at large; 

For she is lumpish, heavy, mclanelioly, 

And, for your friend's sake, will be glad of you ; 

AVhere you may temper iur, liy your perMiavi'iu, 

To hate young Valentine, and love my friend. 

Pro. As much as I can do, I will effect : — 
But you, sir Thurio, are not s>'.iarp enough ; 
You must lay lime, to tangle her desires, 
By wailful sonnets, whose composed rhymes 
Should be full fraught with serviceable vows. 

Buke. Ay, much is the force of heaven-lired 

Pro. Sa^', that upon the altar of her beauty 
You sacrifice vour tears, your sitrhs, your heart. 
Write tiU your ink be dry ; imd with your tears 
Moist it again ; and frame some feeling line, 
That may discover such integrity : 
Tor Orpheus' lute was strung with poet's sinew-s ; 
Whose golden touch could soften steel and stones, 
Make tigers tame, and huge leviathans 
Forsake unsounded deeps to dance on sands. 
After your dire lamenting elegies, 
Visit by night your lady's chamber window, 
With some sweet consort :» to their instruments 
Tune a deploring dump ; ^ tlie night's dead silence 
Will well become such swcct-complaining griev- 
This, or else nothing, will inherit "" her. 

Duke. This discipline shews thou hast l)ccn in 

Thu. And thy advice this night I '11 put in 
Therefore, sweet Proteus, my direct ion-giver. 
Let us into the city presently 
To sort-' some gentlemen well skill'd in music : 
I have a sonnet that will sen'c the turn. 
To give the onset to thy good advice. 

Bukr. About it, gent lemon. 

r,-:. We'll wait u,ioii your cracc, till after 
And afterward determine our proceeding«t. 

Buke. Even now about it ; I will pardon you. 

• The modem concert It the same u the old eomtorl—ti 
\)iujd or company. 

I. Dump. A mournful elcffv. Dump, or dump», f-t 
sorrow, was not originally a burlesque term :— 

" My sinews dull, in dumps I stand."— 8«;»»«T. 

« Inherit. To obtain possession. 

•^ Sort. To choose. 


' Scene I. — " Even in the milk-white bosom of thy 
The lady of the sixteenth century had a small 
pocket in the front of her stays, in which she 
carried her letters, and other matters which she 
valued. In the verses which Valentine has ad- 
dressed to Silvia, he says, 

" My herald thoughts in thy pure bosom rest them." 

In Harnlet we have the same allusion : " These to 
her excellent white bosom." A passage in Lord 
Surrey's Sonnets conveys the same idea, which 
occurs also in Chaucer's Merchant's Tale : — 
" This purse hath she in hire bosome hid." 

* Scene I. — " Saint Nicholas he thy speed." 

AVhen Speed is about to read Lauuce's paper, 
Launce, who ha.s previously said, " Thou can'st not 
read," invokes Saint Nicholas to assist him. Saint 
Nicholas was the patron-saint of scholars. There 
is a story in Douce how the saint attained this 
distinction, by discovering that a wicked host had 
nmrdered three scholars on their way to school, 
and by his prayers restored their souls to their 
bodies. This legend is told in the Life of Saint 
Nicholas, composed in French verse by Mailre 
Wacc, chaplain to Henry II., and which remains 
in manuscript. By the statutes of St. Paul's 
School, the scholars are required to attend divine 
service at the cathedral on the anniversary of this 
saint. The parLsh clerks of London were incorpo- 
rated into a guild, with Saint Nicholas for their 

patron. These worthy persons were, probably, al 
the period of their incorporation, moi-e worthy of 
the name of clerks (scholars) than we have been 
wont in modern times to consider. But why are 
thieves called Saint Nicholas' clerks in Henry IV. ? 
Warburton says, by a quibble between Nicholas 
and old Nick. This we doubt. Scholars appear, 
from the ancient statutes against vagrancy, to have 
been great travellers about the country. These 
statutes generally recognise the right of poor 
scholars to beg ; but they were also liable to the 
penalties of the gaol and the stocks, unless they 
could produce letters testimonial from the chan- 
cellor of their i-espective universities. It is not 
unlikely that in the journeys of these hundreds of 
l^oor scholars they should have occasionally " taken 
a purse " as well as begged "an almesse," and that 
some of "Saint Nicholas's clerks" should have be- 
come as celebrated for the same accomplishments 
which distinguished Bardolph and Peto at Gads- 
hill, as for the learned poverty which entitled them 
to travel with a chancellor's hcence. 

* Scene I. — " The cover of the salt hides (he salt. 
The lai-ge salt-cellar of the dinner-table was a 
massive piece of plate, with a cover equally substan- 
tial. There was only one saltcellar on the board, 
which was placed near the top of the table ; and 
the distinction of those who sat above and below 
the salt was universally recognised. The following 
representation of a salt-cellai*, a, with its cover, 6, 
presented to Queen Elizabeth, is from " NichoU's 

t*.''* ' 


SCENE \.—A Forest, near Mautua. 
Enter certain Outlaws. 

1 Out. Fellows, stand fast ; I see a passenger. 

2 Out, If there be ten, shrink not, but down 

with 'em. 

Enter Valextijie atid Speed. 

3 Out. Stand, sir, and throw us that you have 

about you ; 
If not, we '11 make you sit, and rifle you. 
Speed. Sir, wc are undone ! these are the 
That all the travellers do fear so much. 
J'al. My friends, — 

1 Out. That 's not so, sii- ; wc are your enemies. 

2 Oat. Peace ; wc '11 hear him. 

3 Out. Ay, by my beard, will we ; for he 's a 

proper man. 
Val. Then know, that I have little wealth to 
A man I am cross'd with adversity : 
My riches are these poor habiliments, 
Of which if you should here disfumish me, 
You take the sum and substance that I have. 
2 Out. Whither travel you? 
CoMZDiES. — Vol. I. E 

Val. To Verona. 
1 Out. Whence came you ? 
Fal. From Milan. 

3 Out. Have you long sojourn'd there ? 
Fal. Some sixteen months ; and longer miglil 
have staid, 
If crooked fortune had not thwarted inc. 

1 Out. What, were you banish'd thence ? 
Val. I was. 

2 Out. For what offence ? 

Fal. For that which now torments nic lo re- 
hearse : 
I kill'd a man, whose death I much rcj)cnl ; 
But yet I slew him manfully in light, 
Witiiout false vantage, or base trcarhcry. 

1 Out. Why, ne'er repent it, if it were done so: 
But were you banish'd for so small a fault ? 
Fal. I was, and held me gbd of such a dooui. 
1 Out. Have you the tongues? 
Fal. My youthful travel therein made mc 
nappy ; 
Or else I often had been miserable. 

;? fhif. J?y the bare scalp of Ilobin Hood's fal 
This fellow wore a king for our wild faction. 
1 Out. Wc '11 h.ivc him ; sirs, a word. 


Acr IV.] 


[Scene II. 

Speed. Master, be oue of them ; 
It is an honourable kind of thievery. 
Fal. Peace, villain ! 

2 Out. Tell us this : Have you anything to 

take to ? 
Vol. Nothing, but my fortune. 

3 Out. Know then, that some of us are gentle- 

Such as the fury of uugovern'd youth 
Thrust from the company of awful'' men : 
Myself was from Verona banished, 
For practising to steal away a lady. 
An hen-, and near allied unto the duke. 

2 Out. And I from Mantua, for a gentleman, 
"Whom, in my mood, I stabb'd unto the heart. 

1 Out. And I, for such like petty crimes as 

But to the pm-pose, — for we cite our faults, 
That they may hold excus'd oui- lawless lives, 
And, partly, seeing you are beautified 
With goodly shape ; and by your own report 
A linguist ; and a man of such perfection, 
As we do in om* quality much want ; — 

2 Out. Indeed, because you arc a banish'd 

Therefore, above the rest, we pai-ley to you : 
Are you content to be our general ? 
To make a vu-tue of necessity. 
And live, as we do, in this wildeniess ? 

3 Out. What say'st thou ? wilt thou be of our 

consort ? 
Say, ay, and be the captain of us all : 
Wc '11 do thee homage, and be rul'd by thee, 
Love thee as our commander, and our king. 

1 Out. But if thou scorn our com-tesy, thou 


2 Out. Tliou shalt not live to brag what \\ c 

have ofTcr'd. 
Val. I take your offer, and will live Mith you ; 
Provided that you do no outrages 
On silly women, or poor passengers. 

3 Out. No, we detest sucli vile base practices. 
Come, go with us, wc '11 bring thee to our crews, 
And show thcc all the treasure we have got ; 
Which, with ourselves, all rest at thy dispose. 


SCENE II.— Milan. Court of the Palace. 
Enter Photeus. 

Fro. Already have I been false to Valentine, 
And now 1 must be as unjust to Thurio. 

■ Awful. Stcevensnntl others think we .should here read 
lawful. But Sh.ikspero, in other places, uses this word in 
the sense of lawful : — 

" We come within our awful banks again." 


Under the colour of commending him, 
I have access my own love to prefer ; 
But Silvia is too fair, too true, too holy, 
To be corrupted with my worthless gifts. 
When I protest true loyalty to her, 
She twits me with my falsehood to my friend : 
When to her beauty I commend my vows, 
She bids me tliink, how I have been forsworn 
In breaking faith with Julia whom I lov'd : 
And, notwithstanding all her sudden quips. 
The least whereof would quell a lover's hope. 
Yet, spaniel-like, the more she spurns my love, 
The more it grows, and fawneth on her still. 
But here comes Thurio : now must we to her 

i\jid give some evening music to her ear. 

Enter Thtjbio and Musicians. 

Thu. How now, sir Proteus ? are you crept 
before us ? 

Pro. Ay, gentle Thurio ; for, you know, that 
Will creep in service where it cannot go. 

Thu. Ay, but, I hope, sii-, that you love not 

Pro. Sir, but I do ; or else I would be hence. 

Thu. Who? Silvia? 

Pro. Ay, Silvia, — for your sake. 

Tim. I thank you for your own. Now, gen- 
Let 's tune, and to it lustily awliile. 

Enter Host, at a distance ; and Julia in hoys 

Host. Now, my young guest ! mcthinks you 're 
allychoUy ; I pray you, wliy is it ? 

Jul. Marry, mine host, because I cannot be 

Host. Come, we '11 have you merry : I '11 bring 
you where you shall hear music, and see the 
gentleman that you ask'd for. 

Jul. But shall I hear him speak ? 

Host. Ay, that you shall. 

Jul. That will be music. [Music plays. 

Host. Hark ! hark ! 

Jul. Is he among these ? 

Host. Ay : but peace, let 's hear 'em. 


Who is Silvia? what is she, 
That all our swain* commend her ? 

Holy, fair, and wise is she. 
The heaven such grace did lend her. 

That she might admired be. 

Act IV.] 



Is »he kind, ai she U fair 
For beauty lives with kindness : 

Love doth to her eyes repair, 
To help him of his blindness ; 

And, being help'd, inhabits there. 

Then to Silvia let us sing, 

That Silvia is exeelling; 
She excels each mortal thing. 

Upon the dull earth dwelling : 
To her let us garlands bring. 

Host. How now ? are you sadder than you 
were before ? 
How do you, man ; the music likes ' you not. 

Jul. You mistake ; the musician likes me not. 

Host. "\\\v, my pretty youth ? 

Jul. He plays false, father. 

Host. How ? out of tune on the strings ? 

Jul. Not so ; but yet so false tliat he grieves 
my very heart-strings. 

Host. You have a quick car. 

Jut. Ay, I would I were deaf ! it makes mc 
have a slow heait. 

Host. I perceive, you delight not in music. 

Jul. Not a whit, when it jars so. 

Host. Hark, what fine change is in the music ! 

Jul. Ay ; that change is the spite. 

Host. You would have them always play but 
one thing. 

Jul. I would always have one play but one 
But, host, doth this sir Proteus, that we talk on, 
Often resort unto this gentlewoman ? 

Host. I tell you what Launce, his man, told 
me, he loved her out of all nick.'' 

Jul. Where is Launce ? 

Host. Gone to seek his dog ; which, to-morrow, 
by his master's command, he must carry for a 
present to his lady. 

Jitl. Peace ! stand aside ! the company parts. 

Pro. Sir Thurio, fear not you ! I will so plead, 
That you shalt say, my cunning drift excels. 

TAu. "Where meet we ? 

Pro. At saint Gregory's well.- 

TAu. Farewell. \_Exeunt Tnumo and Musicians. 

Silvia appears above, at her icindow. 

Pro. Madam, good even to your ladyship. 
Sil. I thank you for your music, gentlemen : 
^Vho is that, that spake ? 

» Xii^i— pleases. 

•> Kick. Beyond all reckoning. The nick was the 
notch upon the UUy stick, by which accounts were kept. 
An innkeeper in a pby before Shakspere's time— "A 
Woman never Vexed," says — 

" I have carried 

The tallies at my girdle seven years together. 
For I did ever love to deal honestly in the nick." 
These primitive day-books and ledgers were equally 
adapted to an alehouse score and a nation's revenue ; for, 

E 2 

Pro. One, lady, if you know hia pure heart's 
You'd quickly learn tu kuow liiui by his voice. 

Sil. Sir Prutcu.s, iis 1 take it. 

Pro. Sir Pruteus, gentle liuly, and your servant. 

Sil. What is your will? 

Pro. That I may compass ' yours. 

Stl. You have your wish; uiy will is even 
That presently you hie you hoim- to bed. 
Thou subtle, pcrjur'd, false, disloyal man ! 
Thiuk'st thou, I am so sliiiUow, so couceitliss, 
To be seduced by thy flattery, 
That h;ist deeeiv'd so many with thy vows ? 
Keturn, return, and make thy love amends. 
For mc, — by this pale queen of night I swear, 
I am so fai" from granting thy request. 
That I despise thee for thy wrongful suit ; 
And by and by intend to chide myself, 
Even for this time I spend in talking to thee. 

Pro. I grant, sweet love, that I did love a hidy ; 
But she is dead. 

Jul. 'T were false, if I should speak it ; 
For I am sure she is not buried. [.-(slJr. 

Sil. Say that she be ; yet Valentine, thy friend, 
Survives ; to whom, thyself art witness, 
I am bctroth'd : And art thou not asham'd 
To wrong him with thy iniportunacy ? 

Pro. I likewise hear that Valentine is dead. 

Sil. And so suppose am 1 ; for in his grave 
Assure thyself my love is buried. 

Pro. Sweet lady, let mc rake it from the earth. 

*S(7. Go to thy lady's grave, and call hcr's 
thence ; 
Or, at the least, in hcr's sepulchre thine. 

Jul. He heard not that. \^JtiJt. 

Pro. Madam, if your heart be so obdurate, 
Vouchsafe me ytt your j)icture for my love, 

as our readers know, they rontii 
English Kxchequer till within the : 
* Compass. Johnson says that in 
will is ambigudus. lie wishes to 
him, if he wants her will he has it 
Johnson has mistaken the ine.iiiiiig of : 
which does not here mean to gain, ti'it • 
pears to us that a doublr amb:' 
says " What it your will " — wl 
Siiakspere ha» accurately distm^in-M u 
words, OS in this play (Act I. Sr. III.), 

ill tb« 

■ rd 



• mf^ts. 

It ap. 

1 with his wl»h," 

;sly. Prolcui' reply to 

•■-■• "■ •? / 

•' My will is somctl.: • 
he yet often uses them 
the (lufstion, is- "That 1 \. 
may have your trill tcithi:: p 
rounded. Julia, in her an>M<:. 
in its meaning of to ptrform ; and dittinRuuh-: 
wish and will. '• Vou have yourwiih;" — v^'i 
past — you may perform my will — " my •■> 
&c. This latter meaning of cump'.\«» 1' 
•pcre, as. " You Jmlgo it • 
(I Hen. VI.) "That wn 
The meaning in *>!■'• i 
term, is indicated i-. 
bragged of that he ' 
beyond hi* power. 

• bcl<rrrn 
P'lir <-nm- 

Act IV.] 

T^vo gextle:mex of verona. 

[Scene iV. 

The picture that is hangiug in your chamber ; 
To that I '11 speak, to that I '11 sigh and Avecp : 
For, since the substance of jour perfect self 
Is else devoted, I am but a shadow ; 
And to your shadow will I make true love. 

Jul. If 't were a substaucc, you would, sure, 
deceive it, 
And make it but a shadow, as I am. \_Aside. 

Sil. I am very loth to be your idol, sir; 
But, since your falsehood shall become you well 
To worship shadows, and adore false shapes, 
Send to me in the morning, and I '11 send it : 
And so, good rest. 

Pro. As wretches have o'er-uight, 
That wait for execution in the morn. 

[Kri'inif Proteus ; a/id Silvia, y}-o;« al/oce. 

Jul. Host, will you go ? 

IIosl. By my htdidom," I was fast asleep. 

Jill. Pray you, where lies Sir Proteus ? 

I/oxt. Marry, at my house : Trust mc, 1 thiuk, 
't is almost day. 

Jul. Not so ; but it hath been the longest night 
That e'er I watched, and the most heaviest. 


SCENE III.— The same. 

Enter Eglamouk. 
Efjl. This is the hour that madam Silvia 
Entreated me to call, and know her mind ; 
There 's some great matter she 'd employ me in. — 
Madam, madam ! 

Silvia appears above, at her window. 

Sil. Who calls ? 

Effl. Your servant, and your friend ; 
One that attends your ladyship's command. 

Sil. Sir l-lglamour, a thousand times good- 

Ef/l. As many, worthy lady, to yourself. 
According to your ladyship's impose,^ 
I am thus early come, to know what service 
It is your pleasure to command mc in. 

Sil. O Eglamour, thou art a gentleman, 
(Think not I flatter, for I swear I do not,) 
Valiant, wise, remorseful, well aceomplish'd. 
Thou art not ignorant what dear good will 
I bfar unto the l)anish'd Valentine ; 
Nor hnw my father would enforce me marry 
Vain Thurio, whom my very soiU abhorr'd." 
Thyself hast loved ; and I have heard thee say. 
No grief did ever come so near thy heart, 

^ Jlaliiiom — Holiness; lioli and dom, — as in kingrfowi. 
llolidamc— holy virgin — was a corruption of the term. 

l> Impose — command. — The word, as a noun, does not 
occur aitain in Shalcspere. 

= Mr. Dycc has " my very soul nhhnri," remarking thot 
Hanmcr had made the obvious correction. 

As when thy lady and thy true love died. 

Upon whose grave thou vow'dst pm-e chastity.^ 

Sir Egiamour, I would to A^alcntiue, 

To ]\Iantua, where, I hear, he makes abode ; 

And, for the ways are dangerous to pass, 

I do desu-e thy worthy company. 

Upon whose faith and honour I repose. 

Urge not my father's auger, Egiamour, 

But think upon my grief, a lady's grief ; 

And on the justice of my flying hence, 

To keep me from a most unholy match. 

Which Heaven and fortune still reward with 

I do desire thee, even from a heart 
As full of sorrows as the sea of sands. 
To bear me company, and go \Yith me : 
If not, to hide what I have said to thee, 
That I may venture to depart alone. 

Efjl. ]\Iadam, I pity much your grievances ; 
Which since I know they virtuously are piac'd, 
I give consent to go along with you ; 
Recking as little what betideth me 
As much I wish all good befortuue you. 
When will you go ? 

Sil. This evening coming. 

E^l. Where shall I meet you ? 

Sil. At friar Patrick's cell. 
Where I intend holy confession. 

Effl. I will not fail your ladyship : 
Good-morrow, gentle lady. 

Sil. Good-morrow, kind sir Eglamoui-. 


SCENE lY.—The same. 
Enter Launce, with his dog. 
When a man's servant shall play the cur with 
him, look you, it goes hard : one that I brought 
up of a puppy ; one that I saved from drowning, 
when three or four of his blind brothers and 
sisters went to it ! 1 have taught him — even as 
one would say precisely, Thus I would teach a 
dog. I was sent to deliver him, as a present to 
mistress Silvia, from my master ; and I came no 
sooner into the dining-chambcr, but he steps me 
to her trencher,' and steals her capon's leg. 0, 
't is a foul thing when a cur cannot keep " himself 
in all companies ! I would have, as one should 
say, one that takes upon him to be a dog indeed, 
to be, as it were, a dog at all things. If I had 
not had more wit than he, to take a fault u]5on 
me that he did, I think verily he had been hanged 
for 't ; sure as I live he had suffcr'd for 't : you 
shall judge. He thrusts me himself into the 
company of three or four gentlemen-like dogs, 

' Keep — restrain. 

Act IV.] 


(SCBXB 17. 

under the duke's table : he had not been tlierc 
(bless the mark) a pissing while, but all tlic 
chamber smelt him. Out tcilh the do<j, sajs one ; 
What cur is that? says another; Whip him out, 
says the third ; Ilaiig him up, says the duke. I, 
having been aequiiinted with the smell before, 
knew it was Crab ; and goes me to the I'ellow that 
whips the dogs : Friend, quoth I, you mean to 
ichij) the do// ? Ay, marry, do I, quoth he. You 
do hihi the more tcrong, quoth I ; 7 tras I did 
the thing yuu tcol of. lie midges mc no more 
ado, but whips me out of the chamber. How 
many masters would do this for their servant? 
Nay, I '11 be sworn, I have sat in the stocks'' for 
puddings he hath stolen, otherwise he had been 
executed : I have stood on the pillory'' for gee.«e 
he hath killed, otlierwise he had suifer'd for't: 
thou thiuk'st not of this now !— Nav, I remember 
the trick you served me, when I took my leave 
of madam Silvia : did not I bid thee still mark 
me, and do as 1 do ? "When didst tiiou see me 
heave up my leg, and make water against a gen- 
tlewoman's farthingale ? didst thou ever see me 
do such a trick ? 

Enter PnoTEUS and Julia. 

Pro. Sebastian is thy name ? I. like thee well, 
And will employ thee in some service presently. 

Jul. In what you please. — I '11 do what I can. 

Pro. I hope thou wilt. — How now, you whore- 
son peasant ? [To Latjnce. 
Where have you been these two days loitering? 

Laun. Marry, sir, I carried mistress Silvia the 
dog you bade me. 

Pro. And what says she to my little jewel ? 

Imuh. Marry, she says, your dog was a cur ; 
and tells you, currish thanks is good enough fur 
such a present. 

Pro. But she received my dog ? 

Laun. No, indeed, did she not : here have I 
brouglit him back again. 

Pro. What, didst thou offer her this from me? 

Liun. Ay, sir; the other squirrel was stolen 
from me by the hangman's boys in the market- 
place : and then I offered her mine own ; who 
Is a dog as big as ten of yours, and therefore the 
gift the greater. 

Pro. Go, get thee hence, and find my dog 
Or ne'er return again into my sight. 
Away, I say : Stay'st thou to vex me here? 
A slave, that still an end turns me to shame. 

[E.rit Lax^nce. 
Sebastian, I have entertained thee. 
Partly, that I have need of such a youth. 
That can with some discretion do my business. 

For 't is no trusting to you f(M>lLsh lowt ; 
lUit, ehielly, for thy face and thy belinviour; 
Which (if iny augury deceive mc not) 
Witness godd bringing \ip, fortune, and truth: 
Therefore know thee, for this I eiitcrtmn thee, 
(io presently, and take this ring witli thee, 
DtliviT it (() madam Sdvia: 
She lov'd mc well,' deliver'd it to me. 

.////. It seems you lov'd her not to leave'' her 
token : 
She 's dead, belike. 

Pro. Not so ; I think she lives. 

////. Alas! 

Pro. Why dost thou cry, tdas ! 

Jul. 1 cannot choose but pity her. 

Pro. Wherefore s!io\dd'st tli(m i)ity her? 

Jid. Because, methinks, that she luv'd you us 
As you do love your lady Silvia: 
She dreams on iiim that has forgot her love; 
You dote on her that cares not for your love. 
'Tis pity, love should he so contrary ; 
And thiuking on it makes me cry, ahis ! 

Pro. Well, give her tiiat ring, and therewithal 
This letter ; — that 's her chamber. — Tell my lady, 
I claim the promise for her heavenly picture. 
Your message done, liic home unto my chamber, 
Where thou shall find me sad and solitary. 

[Exit Pkoteus. 

Jul. How many women would do such a 
message ? 
Alas, poor Proteus ! thou hast enlcrtain'd 
A fox, to be the shepherd of thy lambs : 
Alas, poor fool ! wliy do I ))ity him 
That with his very heart despisclh me ? 
Because he loves her, he desj)iseth mc ; 
Because I love him, I must pity him. 
This ring I gave him, when lie parted from me, 
To bind him to remember niy good will : 
And now am I (unhap])y messenger) 
To plead for that, which i wouhl not obtain ; 
To carry that wliich I would have rcfus'd ; 
To praise his faith, which I- would have dis- 

I am my master's true confinned love ; 
But cannot be true servant to my master, 
Unless I prove false traitor to myself. 
Yet I will woo for him ; but yet so eoldiy. 
As, Heaven it knows, I would not have him .<ipecd. 

Enter Sll.vlA, nit, 
Gentlewoman, good day! I jmiy yu, 1"- iny 

To bring me wlicrc to speak with madam Silvia. 

» Slie lov'd mc well, r*o deliver'd il to mc. 
b To Uaf-xo part with. 


Act IV.] 


[Scene TV. 

Sil. What would you witli her, if that I be she ? 

Jul. If you be she, I do entreat your patience 
l"o hear me speak the message I am sent on. 

Sil. From whom ? 

Jul. From my master, sir Proteus, madam. 

Sil. ! — he sends you for a picture ? _ 

Jul. Ay, madam. 

Sil. Ursula, bring my picture there. 

\_Picture hrov.ght. 
Go, give your master tlus : tell him from me, 
One Julia, that liis changing thoughts forget. 
Would better fit his chamber, than this shadow. 

Jul. !Mad;un, please you penisc tliis letter. 

I'ardon me, madam; I have unadvis'd 
Delivered you a paper that I should not : 
This is the letter to your ladyship. 

Sil. 1 pray thee, let me look on that again. 

Jul. It may not be ; good madam, pardon me. 

Sil. There,' hold. 
I will not look upon your master's lines : 
[ know fhey are stufTd with protestations, 
.Vnd full of new-found oaths ; Avliich he will 

'Vs easily as I do tear his paper. 

Jul. Madam, he sends yoiu* ladyship this ring. 

Sil. The more shame for liiin that he sends it 
For, I have heard him say a thousand times, 
! [is Julia gave it him at his departure : 
Though hi3 false finger have profan'd the ring, 
Mine shall not do his Julia so much wrong. 

Jul. She thanks you. 

Sil. What say'st thou ? 

Jul. I thank you, madam, tliat you tender her : 
Poor gentlewoman ! my master wrongs her 

Sil. Dost thou know her ? 

.////. Almost as well as I do know myself : 
To think upon licr woes I do protest I liavc wept an hundred several times. 

Sil. liclike, she thinks that Proteus hath for- 
sook her. 

/;//. I tliink she doth, and that 's lior cause of 

Sil. T.S she not passing fair ? 

Jul. She hath been fairer, madam, than she is : 
When she did think my master lov'd her well. 
She, in my judgment, was as fair as you ; 
IJut since slic did neglect licr looking-glass, 
.■\nd threw her sun expelling mask away,^ 
The air hath starv'd tlie roses in her chcek.s. 
And pinch'd the lily-tincture of her face. 
That now she is become as black as I." 

* In this passage pinch'd mo.nns p.\inte(I, .md not as 
Johnson ha.« it, pinch'd with cold. Black signifies dark, 

Sil. How tall was she ? 

Jul. About my stature : for, at Pentecost, 
"Wlien all oui- pageants of delight were play'd. 
Our youth got me to play the woman's part. 
And J was triram'd in madam Julia's gown ; 
Which serv'd me as fit, by all men's judgment, 
As if the garment had been made for me : 
Therefore, I know she is about my height. 
And, at that time, I made her weep a-good, 
B^or I did play a lamentable part ; 
Madam, 't was Ariadne, passioning 
For Theseus' pcijury, and unjust flight; 
"Wliich I so lively acted witli my tears, 
Tliat my poor mistress, moved therewithal, 
Wept bitterly ; and, would I might be dead, 
If I in thought felt not her very sorrow ! 

Sil. She is beholden to thee, gentle youth ! — 
Alas, poor lady ! desolate and left ! — 
I weep myself to think upon thy words. 
Here, youth, there is my pui'se ; I give thee this 
For thy sweet mistress' sake, because thou lov'st 

Farewell. [Evil Silvia. 

Jul. And she shall thank you for 't, if e'er you 
know her. 
A virtuous gentlewoman, mild, and beautiful. 
I hope my master's suit will be but cold. 
Since she respects my mistress' love so much. 
Alas, how love can trifle with itself ! 
Here is her picture : Let me see ; I think. 
If I had such a tire, this face of mine 
Were full as lovely as is this of hers : 
And yet the painter flatter'd her a little, 
Unless I flatter with myself too much. 
Her hair is auburn, mine is perfect yellow ■.'^ 
If that be all the difference in his love, 
I '11 get me such a colour 'd periwig.^ 
Her eyes are grey as glass ; '' and so are mine . 
Ay, but her forehead 's low, and mine 's as high. 
What should it be, that he respects in her, 
But I can make respective" in myself, 

tanned. In the next act Thurio says " my face is black," zs 
opposed to "fair." It is curious that black, bleak, blight, 
are words having a strong affinity ; and tliat, tlierefore, "the 
air," wliicli " .starv'd the roses," and " pinfli'd the lily tinc- 
ture," so as to make "hlack," is the same as the withering 
and blitjhiing agency, the hlcnlc wind, which covers vegeta- 
tion with a sterile blacliiicss. (Set- Richardson's Dictionary.) 

•'' Capell says the colour of tlie hair marks this play as of 
the period of Elizabeth. The auburn, or yellow, of the 
queen's hair made that colour beautiful. 

^ The glass of Shak^pere's time was not of the coloiirless 
quality which now constitutes the perfection of glass, but 
of a light blue tint ; lience " as grey as glass." " Eyen as 
gray as glasse," in the old romances, expresses the pale 
cerulean blue of those eyes which usuallv accompany a fair 
complexion — a complexion bi'longing to the " auburn " and 
" yellow" hair of Julia and Silvia. 

c Stcevens interprets re.«/)('c/irf as respectful, respectable ; 
but the true meaning of the word, and the context, shew 
that Julia says, " What lie respects in her, has equal re/a<toii 
to myself." 

Act IV.] 


tScim IV. 

If this fond love were not a blinded god ? 
Come, shadow, come, and take this shadow up, 
For 't is thy rival. O thou senseless form, 
Thou shalt be worshipp'd, kiss'd, lov'd, and 

ador'd ; 
And, were there sense in his idolatry. 
My substance should be statue' in thy stead. 

» The wonls statue anil picture were often used without 
distinction. In Massinger's City Madam, Sir John Frugal 
desires that his daughters 

I '11 use thee kindly for thy niLstn-SN' bake, 
That used me so ; or olso, hy Jove I vow, 
I should have scratch'd out your unseeing ryw, 
To make my master out of love with thcc.[£riY. 

" may take leave 
or their late suitor*' italuet 

Luke replies:— "There they Kanv. 

Queen Ellzn' ■':' • - ' ■ 

lying upon ■ 

Henry the I ,. 

busts of terra coUa— are recited. 

Blow, sproklnr of 


Sc I. 

p. 50.—" Come, go with us, we'll bring thee to our 

"Come, go with us, we'll bring thee to our cnve."—Conier. 
Mr. Collier f.ays, in defence of his reading, that the " crews," 
so to call them, were on the staue, while the "cave" was 
the place where the treasure was deposited. Crews, how- 
eTer, are companions, and it was not necessary that all the 
outlaws should be on the stage, leaving the treasure un- 
guarded Mr. Dyee adopts the correction of cave. Mr. 
Singer has caret. Mr. Grant White, in his edition of 

" The Works of William Slmkeipeare," published a( Dotoo, 
U.S., in \hb'J, adheres to erewi. 

Sc. IV. p. 53. — "The other squim-l wai stolen from m« 
by the hangman's boyt." 

" Uy the lianijm'inboij." — Collier. 
The hangman boij, says Mr. Collier, Is a rascally boy, a 
gallows boy. There is no occasion fur the change, for the 
"hangman's buys" are boyt dedicated to the liAiigtuan. 
Mr. Dyee and Mr. G. White print " hangman boys." 


1 ScENK I.—" Jiobin ITood's fat fficv:" 

TUE jolly Friar Tuck, of the old Robin Hood 
ballads— the almost equally famous Friar Tuck, of 
Ivauhoe— is the pei-sonage whom the oiitlaws here 
invoke. It ia unnecessary for us to enter upon the 
" or Tuck, the merry friar, which many a sermon made, 

In praise of Robin Hood, his outlaws, and his trade," 
as old Drayton has it. It may be sufficient to give 
a representation of his " bare scalp." The follow- 
ing illustration is copied, with a little improvement 
in the drawing, from the Friar in Mr. Tollett's 
painted window, representing the celebration of 
May-day The entire window is given in the 
illustrations of All's Well that Ends W.ell, with 
a detailed account of the several figures. Wc may 
mention here, that the figures, which represent 
Morris dancers, are very spirited. One of the chief 
is supposed to be Maid ISlarian, the Queen of May ; 
and as Marian was the mistress of Robin Hood, who 
Avas anciently .styled King of May, it has been con- 
jectured that the Friar is Robin's jovial chaplain. 
At any rate, the figure is not unworthy of Friar 

over his followers, were evidently in our poet's 

mind when he makes Valentine say 

" I take your offer, and will live -with you, 
Provided that you do no outrages 
On silly women, and poor passengers." 

- Scene II.—" At Saint Gregory's ivell." 

This is, as far as we know, the only instance in 
which holy wells are mentioned by Shakspere. 
We have already mentioned (see Introductory 
Notice) that the popular belief in the virtues of 
these sainted wells, must have been familiar to him. 
Saint Gregory's well, the place where Proteus and 
Thurio were to meet, might have been found in 
some description of Italian and other cities which 
Shakspere had read ; for these wells were often 
contained within splendid buildings, raised by 
some devotee to protect the sacred fount from 
which, he believed, he had derived inestimable ad- 
vantage. Such was the well of Saint Winifred at 
Holywell, in Flintshire. This remarkable fountain 
throws up eighty-four hogsheads every minute, 
which volume of water forms a considerable stream. 
The well is enclosed within a beautiful Gothic 
temple, erected by the mother of Henry VII. The 
following engraving represents this rich and elegant 


Shnkapcro haa two other allusions to Robin 
Hood. The old duke, in As You Like It, " is al- 
ro.vly in the forest of Ardcn, and a many merry 
men with him, and tlicro they live, like the old 
Robin Hood f>f Kngland." Ma.Hter Silence, that 
' merry hf-nrt," that " man of mettle," sings, " in 
the Bweet of the uight," of 

" Robin Hood, Scarlet, and John.' 
The honourable conditions of Robin's lawless rule 

' Scene III. — ' Z'pon whose grave thou vow'dst pure 

Sir Egl amour was selected by Silvia as the com- 
panion of her flight, not only as "a gentleman," 


but as one whose affections were buried in the 
•' grave " of hid " lady," and " true love." Steeveus 
says, that it was coiuuion for widows and widowers 
to nuike solomn vows of chastity, of whicJi the 
church took account. It is immaterial (for the 
matter has been controverted) whether Sir Egla- 
mour was a widower, or had made this vow upon 
the death of one to whom he was betrothed. 

* ScE.vE IV. — '• lie steps me to her rreiirlier." 

That the daughter of a Duke of Milan should 
eat her capon from a trencher, may appear some- 
what strange. It may be not<>d, however, that 
the fifth Earl of Northumbeiland, in 151"2, was 
ordinarily served on wooden trenchers, and that 
plates of pewter, mean as we may now think them, 
were reserved in his family for great holidays. 
The Northumberland Household Book, edited by 
Bishop Percy, furnishes sevei-al entries which 
establish this. In the privy-purse expenses of 
Henry VIII. there are also entries regarding 
trenchers; as, for example, in 1530, — "Item, 
paied to the s'geaut of the pnuti-ye for certen 
trenchoi-s for the king, xxiijs iiijd." 

3 Scene IV. — '• / have sat in the stocks." 

Launce speaks familiarly of an object that was 
the terror of vagabonds in every English village, 
— the " Ancient Castle " of Hudibras, — the 

" Dungeon scarce three inches wide; 
With roof so low, that under it 
They never stand, but lie or sit ; 
And yet so foul, that whoso is in. 
Is to the middle-leg in prison." 

Civilization has banished the stocks, with many 
other relics of a barbarous age. The following 
representation, which is taken from Fox's Acts 
and Moniiments, and there professes to depict 
" the straight handling of close prisoners in Lol- 
lard's tower," may contribute to preserve the re- 
membrance of tills renowned " Fabrick." 

* SCEXE IV. — " / have stood on the pillo)nj." 

The pillory is also aboli.shed in all ordinary 
cases, and perhaps public opinion will prevent it 
being ever again used. Our ancestors were 
ingenious in the varieties of form in which they 
constructed their pillories. Douce has engraved 
no less than six specimens of these instruments of 
punishment. The pillory that was in use amongst 

us not a quarter of a contun,' npo, appt-ar« to h*To 

ditforcd very (*li.'l»tlv frnm that of tho time of 

Henry VIlT Tho fJUu'. 

which repnsentu the iir 

upon Uobort Ockimj, in ilmi rei(;M, is cMimxi, hka 

the preceding lUustmtion, from Fox's Martym. 

' Scene IV. — "Sun-expelling masl." 

Stubbs, in his Anatomic of Abuses, published 
in 1595, thus describes the ina-sks of tho ladies of 
Elizabeth's time : " Wlien they use to ri^le abroad 
they have masks and visors made (pf velvet, where- 
with they cover all their faces, having holes mado 
in them against their eyes, whereout they look," 

9 Scene IV.- 

-" At Pentecost, 

Wten all ouv pafjeants of delight tcere pUii/'d." 

We shall include the general subject of pageants 
in an illustration of tho line in Act V. 

" Triumphs, mirth, and rare tolemnity." 

' Scene IV.— ".4 colour'd periwig." 

No word has puzzled etymologist* more than 
periwig. It has been referred to a Hebrew, 
Greek, Latin, and nortliern origin, and, perhaps, 
with equal want of success. It is tlio same wonl 
as perwlck, periicicle, and penile. Whiter, in Jiis 
very curious Etymological Dictionary, thinks it it 
a compound of two words, or, rather, combinations 
of sounds, ommon to many Imguagcx. "The 
Vfic, belonging to the head," he says, " means the 
raised up, soft covering. In the penuque, or 
pernwic, the PHQ, or I'll, means, 1 believe, the 
aiclosure, as in^xirX-.'' When we Kniile at Juli.Vs 
expression, " a colour'd jwriwig," wo must recol- 
lect that, in Sliakspere's time, the word had not a 
ludicrous meaning. False hair was worn by 
ladies long before wigs were ml'>pto<l by men. In 
a beautiful pxssiige in the Merchant of Venice. 
Shakspere more particularly notices this female 
f.ushion : 

" So arc tho»c criiped, inakjr, golden locki, 

Which make luch wanton ({»mt)oU with the wind. 

Upon iuppoJtd faimcn, often known 

To tie the dowry of a second head. 

The icull that bred them In (he »epulrhr»." 



SCENE ^.—The same. Ah Abbey. 

Enter Eglamouk. 

Egl. The sun begins to gild the western slcj' : 
And now, it is about the very hour 
That Silvia, at friar Patrick's cell, should meet 

She will not fail ; for lovers break not hours, 
Unless it be to come before their time ; 
So much they spur their expedition. 

Enter Silvia. 

See where she comes : Lady, a happy evening ! 

fiU. Amen, amen ! go on, good Eglamour, 
Out at the postcni by the abbey-wall ; 
I fear I am attended by some spies. 

Egl. Fear not : the forest is not three leagues 

If we recover that, we are sure enough. [Exeunt. 

SCENE II.— The same. A Room in the Duke's 

Enter Thurio, Pkotetjs, and Julia. 

Thu. Sir Proteus, what says Silvia to my suit ? 
Pro. 0, sir, I find her milder than she was ; 
And yet she takes exceptions at your person. 
Thu. What, that my leg is too long ? 
Pro. No ; that it is too little.'' 
Thti. I '11 wear a boot, to make it somcM'hat 

Pro. But love will not be spurr'd to what it 

Thii. What says she to my face ? 
Pro. She says, it is a fair one. 
Thn. Nav, then tlie wanton lies ; my face is 


" That it is too liltle. "Little" does not sound like ?.n 
epithet of Sliakspere's. Mi','lit not he havewritten "lithe"? 
Lithe, lithy, lither, are often used in the sense of weak. 

Act v.] 


[Semi IV. 

Pro. But pearls are fair ; and the old saying is, 
Black men are pearls in beauteous ladies' eyes. 
JuL 'T is true, such pearls as put out Lidies' 

eyes ; 
For I had rather wink than look on them. [Mide. 
TfiK. How likes she my discourse ? 
Pro. Ill, when you talk of war. 
Thu. But well, when I discourse of love and 

peace ? 
Jill. But better, indeed, when you hold your 

peace. [Aside. 

Thu. What says she to my valour ? 
Pro. 0, sir, she makes no doubt of that. 
Jul. She needs not, when she knows it 

cowardice. \_Aside, 

Thu. "What says she to my birth ? 
Pro. That you are well deriv'd. 
Jul. True ; from a gentleman to a fool. [Aside. 
Thu. Considers she my possessions ? 
Pro. 0, ay ; and pities them. 
Thu. Wherefore? 

Jul. That such an ass should owe them. [Aside. 
Pro. That they are out by lease.* 
////. Here comes the duke. 

Enfer DvKZ. 

Luke. How now, sir Proteus ? how now, 
Tliurio ? 
Which of you saw sir Eglamour of late ? 

Thu. Not I. 

Pro. Nor I. 

Duke. Saw you my daughter ? 

Pro. Neither. 

Duke. Why, then, she 's fled unto that peasant 
Valentine ; 
-Ynd Eglamour is in her company. 
T is true ; for friar Lawrence met them both, 
As he in penance wander'd through the forest : 
Him he kuew well, and guess'd that it was she ; 
But, being mask'd, he was not sure of it : 
Besides, she did intend confession 
At Patrick's cell this even ; and there she was not : 
Tliese likelihoods confirm her flight from hence. 
Therefore, I pray you, stand not to discourse. 
But mount you presently ; and meet with me 
Upon the rising of the mountain-foot 
That leads towards Mantua, whither they are 

Dispatch, sweet gentlemen, and follow me. [Exit. 

Thu. Why this it is to be a peevish girl. 
That flies her fortune when it follows her : 

• By his possessions, Thurio means his )andi; but Pro- 
teus, who is bantering him, alludes to his mental endow- 
Cieuts, which he says "are out by lease"— are not in his 
own kreping. 

I '11 after ; more to be revcng'd on Eglamour, 
Then for the love of rceklcis Silvui. [Exit. 

Pro. And I will follow, more for Silvia's love. 
Than hate of Eglamour that goes with her. [Ksxt. 

Jul. And I will fullow, more to cross that lov«-, 
Than hate for Silvia, that is gone for love. [Exit. 

SCENE \\\.— Frontiers of Mantua. The 

Enter SlLVi.\, and Out-laws. 

1 Out. Come, come ; 

Be patient, we must bring you to our captain. 

Sil. A thousand more mischances than this one 
Have Icarn'd me how to brook this patiently. 

2 Out. Come, bring her away. 

1 Out. Wliere is the gentleman that was with 
her ? 

3 Out. Being nimble-footed, he hath out-run 

But Moyses and Valerius follow him. 
Go thou with her to the west end of the wood. 
There is our captain : we '11 follow him that 's fled. 
The thicket is beset, he cannot 'scape. 

1 Out. Come, I must brint: yoti to our cap. 
tain's cave ; 
Fear not ; he bears an honourable niiiul, 
^Vnd will not use a woman lawlessly. 
Sil. Valentine, this I endure for thee. 


SCENE Vf .—Another part of the Forest. 

Enter V.^lextixe. 

77//. How use doth breed a habit in a man ! 
This shadowy desert, unfrequented woods, 
I better brook than floudshiiig peopled towns : 
Here can I sit alone, unseen of any. 
And to the nightingale's complaining notes 
Tune my distresses, and record* my woes. 
thou that dost inhabit in my breast. 
Leave not the mansion so long tcnantlcss; 
Lest, growing ruinous, the building fall, 
And leave no memory of what it was ! 
Repair me with thy presence, Silvia; 
Thou gentle nymph, cherish thy forlorn swain! 
What halloing, and what stir, is this to-day ? 
These are my mates, that make their wills their 

Have some unhappy passenger in chase : 

• Jlecord, to sing: thus :— 

" Fair Philomel, i)l|iht-mu»ic o( the tprin;, 
Sweetly rteordt her tuneful harmony. ■* 

lyreflom'i EctofUM. IJJS. 

Douce says that the wonl was formed from the rrfordrr, a 
sort of flute with which birds were Uught to sinf. 


.4.CT v.] 



They love me well ; yet I have much to do, 
To keep them from uneivil outrages. 
Withdraw thee, A''alentinc; who's this comes 
here r [Sfeps aside. 

Eater PiiOTEUS, SiLViA, and Julia. 

Pro. Madam, this service I have done for you, 
(Though you respect not aught your servant 

To hazard life, and rescue you from him 
That would have forc'd your honour and your 

Vouchsafe me, for my meed, but one fair look ; 
A smaller boon tlian this 1 cannot beg, 
And less than this, I am sure, you cannot give. 

J'al. How like a dream is this I see and hear ! 
Love, lend me patience to forbear a v.hilc. 

Sil. miserable, unhappy that I am ! 
Pro. Unhappy were you, madam, ere I came ; 
IJut, by iny coming, I have made you happy. 
Sil. By thy approach thou mak'st me most 

Jul. And me, when he approachcth to your 
l)rcsence. [Jsidc. 

Sil. Had I been seized by a hungry lion, 
I would have been a breakfast to the beast, ■ 
Rather than have false Proteus rescue me. 
0, Heaven be judge, how I love Valentine, 
Whose life 's as tender to me as my soul ; 
And full as much, (for more there cannot be,) 
I do detest false pcrjui-'d Proteus : 
Therefore be gone, solicit me no more. 

Pro. What dangerous action, stood it next to 
Would I not undergo for one calm look ? 
O, 't is the curse in love, and still approv'd," 
When women cannot love, where they 're belov'd. 
Sil. When Proteus cannot love where he's 
Read over Julia's heart, thy first best love. 
For whose dear sake thou didst then rend thy 

Into a Ihousand oaths; and all those oaths 
Dtsrcnded into pci-jury, to love me. 
'i'liou hast no faith left now, unless tliou liadst 

t wo, 
And that's far worse than none; better have 

Than plural faith, which is too much by one: 
Thou counterfeit to thy true friend! 

Pro. In love, 

Wio respects friend ? 


' y<;';»roc'rf— proved, experienced. 

Sil. All men but Proteus. 

Pro. Nay, if the gentle spii-it of moving words 
Can no way change you to a milder form, 
1 11 woo you like a soldier, at arms' end ; 
And love you 'gainst the nature of love, force you. 

Sil. O heaven ! 

Pro. I'll force thee yield to my desire. 

J'al. lluffian, let go that rude uncivil touch ; 
Thou friend of an ill fashion ! 


Valentine ! 

Fal. Thou common friend, that 's without faith 

or love ; 
(For such is a friend now ;) treacherous man ! 
Tliou hast beguil"d my hopes ; nought but mine 

Could have persuaded me : Now I dare not say 
I have one friend alive ; thou wouldst disprove me. 
Who should be trusted when one's own right 

Is perjur'd to the bosom ? Proteus, 
I am sorry I must never trust thee more. 
But count the world a stranger for thy sake. 
The private wound is deepest : O time most ac- 

curs'd ! 
'Mougst all foes, that a friend should be the 

Pro. Mj shame, and guilt, confounds me. — 
Forgive me, Valentine : if hearty sorrow 
Be a sufScient ransom for offence, 
I render it here ; I do as truly suffer 
As e'er I did commit. 

Fal. Then I am paid ; 

And once again I do receive thee honest : — 
^Vlio by repentance is not satisfied 
Is nor of heaven, nor earth ; for these arc pleas'd ; 
By penitence the Eteraal's wrath 's appeas'd : — 
And, that my love may appear plain and free, 
All that was mine in Silvia, I give thee.'" 

a This passage has much perplexed the commentators. 
Pope tliinks it very odd that Valentine should give up his 
mistress at once, without any reason alleged ; and, conse- 
quently, the two lines spoken by Valentine, after his for- 
giveness of Proteus, — 

" And, that my love may appear plain and free, 
All that was mine, in Silvia, I give tliee," 

are considered to be interpolated or transposed. Sir W. 
lilackstone thinks they should be spoken by Thurio. In 
our first edition we suggested, without altering tlie text, 
that the two lines might be spoken by Silvia. A corre- 
spondent, however, had the kindness to supply us with 
an explanation, which, we think, is very preferable, re- 
moving, as it appears to do, much of the dilliculty; 
although, after all, it might be intended that Valentine, in 
a fit of romance, should give up his mistress. Our corre- 
spondent writes as follows:— "It appears to me that the 
lines belong properly to Valentine, as given in all the edi- 
tions, and not to Silvia, as suggested by you. The error 
of all the previous commentators, and, as I think, the one 
into which you have fallen, is in understanding the word 
'air to be used by Shakspere, in the above passage, in 
the sense of 'everything,' or as applying to 'love' in 
the previous line; whereas it refers to 'wrath' in the 
line which immediately precedes the above couplet. The 

Act V.J 


tSttat IV. 

Jul. me, unhappy ! {Faints. 

Pro. Look to the boy. 

Val. Why, boy ! why, wag ! liow now ? what's 
the matter? Look up ; speak. 

Jul. good sir, my master charged me to de- 
liver a ring to madam Silvia ; which, out of my 
neglect, wes never done. 

Pro. Whcie is that ring, boy? 

Jul. Uere 't is : tliis is it. \_Gices a ring. 

Pro. How ! let me see : why this is the ring 
I gave to Julin. 

Jul. 0, cry your mercy, sir, I have mistook ; 
This is the ring you sent to Silvia. 

\_Sheirs another ring. 

Pro. But, how cam'st thou by this ring? at 
my depart, I gave this unto Julia. 

Jul. And Julia herself did give it me ; 
And Julia herself hath brought it hither. 

Pro. How ! Julia ! 

Jul. Behold her that gave aim to all thy oaths,* 
And entertain'd them deeply in her heart : 
How oft hast thou with perjury cleft the root?** 
Proteus, let this habit make thee blush! 
Be thou asham'd, that I have took upon me 
Such an immodest raiment ; if shame live 
In a disguise of love : 
It is the lesser blot, modesty finds, 
Women to change their shapes, than men their 

Pro. Than men their minds ! 't is true ; O 
heaven ! were man 
But constant, he were perfect: that one error 

way in which I would read these three lines is as follows : — 

' By penitence the Eternal's wrath 's appeaj>'d ; 
And that my love (i.«. for Proteus) may appear plain and 

All (i.e. the wrath) that was mine in (i.e. on account of) 
Silvia, I give thee (i.e. give thee up — forego).' 

In other words, Valentine, having pardoned Proteus for 
his treachery to himself, in order to convince him how 
sincere was his reconciliation (justifying:, however, to him- 
self what he was about to du, by the consideration that 

' By penitence the Eternal's wrath's appeas'd '), 

also forgives him the insult he had offered to Silvia. The 
use above suggested of the preposition "in" appears to 
me to be highly poetical. It distingui^thes between Valen- 
tine's wrath on his own account for Proteuss treachery to 
himself, and that of Silvia for the indignity offered her by 
Proteus, which latter Valentine adopts and makes his own 
and so calls his wrath in Silvia. Xlie use of the word 
'was' also supports this reading. Valentine wishes to 
express that \\u wrath was past : had he been speaking of 
bis ' love," he would have said ' is.'" 

Mr. G. White, in his edition of the Plays, calls it "a 
singular passage," but says that comment belongs rather 
to the philosopher than the critic, as it appears to be un- 
corrupted. He calls attention to similar overstrained 
generosity in Valentine, in Act II. Sc. IV. where he twice 
earnestly entreats Silvia to accept Proteus as her"lover," 
on equal terms with him as his •' fellow-servant to her." 

» See Note to Act III. Sc. I. 

b "Cleft the root" is an allusion to cleaving the pin, in 
archery, continuing the metaphor from " give aim." To 
cleave the pin was to break the nail which attached the 
mark to the butt. 

Fills him with faults; makes him ruu through 

all sins : 
Inconstancy falls off, ere it begins: 
What is in Silvia's face, but I may spy 
More fresh in Julia's willi ;i ' . ? 

Val. Come, come, a hand 
Let me be blest to make this happy close ; 
'T were pily two such friends should be long foes. 

Pro. Bear witness, Iltaven, I have iny ui.l, 
for ever. 

Jul. And I mine. 
Enter Outlaws, with Dl'ke and TiiUKlo. 

Out. A prize, a prize, a pi ize ! 

Val. Forbear, forbear, I say, it is my lord 
the duke. 
Your grace is welcome to a man disgrac'J, 
Banished Valentiue. 

Duke. Sir Valentine ! 

Thu. Yonder is Silvia; and Silvia's mine. 

Val. Thuiio, give back, or else embrace thy 
death ; 
Come not within the measure of my wrath : 
Do not name Silvia thine ; if once again, 
Milan shall not behold thee.» Here she stands, 
Take but possession of her with a touch ; — 
I dare thee but to breathe upon my love.— 

Thu. Sir Valentine, I care not for her, I ; 
I hold him but a fool, that will endanger 
His body for a girl that loves him not : 
I claim her not, and therefore she is thine. 

Duke. The more degenerate and base art thou. 
To make such means for her as thou hast done, 
And leave her on such slight conditions. — 
Now, by the honour of my ancestry, 
I do applaud thy spirit, Valentine, 
And think thee worthy of an empress' love. 
Know then, I here forget all former griefs, 
Cancel all grudge, repeal thee home again.— 
Plead a new state in thy unrivall'd merit. 
To which I thus subscribe, — Sir Valentine, 
Thou art a gentleman, and well dcrivM ; 
T;ike thou thy Silvia, for thou hast dtscrv'd her. 

/'(//. I thank your grace; the gift hath made 
me happy. 
I now beseech you, for your dautrhfcr's sake, 
To grant one boon that I shall a^k of you. 

Duke. I grant it for thine own, whalc'cr it be. 

Val. These banish'd men, that I have kept 
Are men endued with worthy qualities ; 
Forgive them what they have committed here, 

• The reading of the original edition it "Verona ihail 
not hold thee." Mr. Collier gives 

"Milano shall not hold tbee;" 
of which Mr. Dyce approvet. 8e« remark of ibc CuCr 
bridge editors, Act. II. Sc. V. 


Act v.] 


[Scene IV. 

And let them be recalled from their exile : 
They are reformed, civil, full of good, 
And fit for great employment, worthy lord. 

Duke. Thou hast prevail'd ; I pardon them, 
and thee ; 
Dispose of them, as thou knowst their deserts. 
Come, let us go; we will include all jars 
Willi triumphs, mirth, and rare solemnity.* 

Val. And, as we walk along, I dare be bold 
"With our discourse to make you- grace to 

What think jou of this page, my lord ? - 

Duke. I think the boy hath grace in him ; he 

Val. I warrant you, my lord ; more grace than 

Duke. What mean you bj that saying ? 
Val. Please you, I '11 tell you as we pass along, 
Tiiat you will wonder what hath fortuned. — 
Come Proteus ; 't is your penance, but to hear 
The story of your loves discovered : 
That done, our day of marriage shall be yours ; 
One feast, one house, one mutual happiness. 




- -VW/-^ -^ <■ "Wc*; . 


' Scene IV.—" Triumphs, mirlh, and rare 

Malone, in a note on this jxissage, says, 
" Triumphs, in this and many other passages of 
Shakspere, signify masques and revels." This 
assertion appears to us to have been hastily made. 
We have referred to all the passages of Shakspere 
in which the plural noun " triumphs " is used ; 
and it appears to us to have a signification per- 
fectly distinct from that of masques and revels. 
And first of Julius Caesar. Antony says : — 

" O, mighty Caesar! Dost thou lie so lowf 
Are all thy conquests, glories, triumphs, spoils. 
Shrunk to this little measure f ' 

In Titus Andronicus, Tamora, addressing her con- 
queror, exclaims, 

" We are brought to Rome 
To beautify thy triumphs." 

In these two quotations we have the original 
meaning of triumphs — namely, the solemn pro- 
cessions of a conqueror with his captives and 
spoils of victory. The triumjihs of modern times 
were gorgeous shows, in imitation of those pomps 
of antiquity. When Columbus, returning from his 
first voyage, presented to the sovereigns of Castile 
and Arragon the productions of the countries which 
he had discovered, the solemn procession on that 
memorable occasion was a real Triumph. But 
when Edward IV., in Shak>pere (Henry VI., Part 
iii.), exclaims, after his final conquest, 

" And now what rests, but that we spend the time 
Wiih stately triumphs, mirthful comic shows. 
Such as befit the pleasures of the court," 

he refers to those ceremonials which the genius of 
chivalry had adopted from the mightier pomps of 
antiquity, imitating something of their splendour, 
but laying aside their stern demonstrations of 
outward exultation over their vanquished foes. 
There were no human captives in massive chains 
— no lions and elei)hant3 led along to the amphi- 
theatre, for the gratificat ion of a turbulent populace. 
Edward exchums of his prisoner Margaret — 

" .\wajr with her, and waft her hence to France." 

The dread of Cleopatra was that of exposure in 
the Triumph : — 

"Shall they hoist me up. 
And shew me to the shouting varletry 
Of censuring Rome f" 

Here, then, was the difference of the Roman and 
the feudal manners. The triumphs of the middle 
ages were shows of peace, decorated with the pomp 

of arms ; but altogether mere scenic repre»entA- 
tions, deriving their name from the more solemn 
triumphs of antiquity. Ijut they were not 
masques, as Malino has .stated. The Duko of 
York, in Richaitl II., asks, 

" What news from Oxford f hold these Justs and triumphi f" 

and for these "justs and triumphs" Aumerle has 
prepared his " gay apparel." There is one more 
pa.«siige which appears to us conclusive as to the 
use of the word Triumphs. The passage is in 
Pericles : Simonides asks, 

" Are the knights ready to begin the triumph t " 

And when answered that they are, he says — 

" Return then, we are ready ; and our daughter. 
In honour of uhose birth these triumph* are. 
Sits here, like beauty's child." 

The triumph, then, meant the " joustes of peace " 
which we have noticed in a previous illuctration ; 
and the great tournament there mentioned, when 
Elizabeth sat in her " fortress of perfect beauty," 
was expressly called a triumph. In the triumph 
was, of course, included the processions and other 
" stately " shows that accompanied the sports of 
the tilt-yard. 

In this view of the word triumph we have given 
an engraved illustration at the foot of the last 
Act, which represents a procession at Milan of the 
nobles, and knights, and prelates of Italy, who 
attended "the emperor in his royal court." The 
various figures are grouped from particular scenes 
in the very cui-ious book of Hoghenburg (which 
we have mentioned in the Introductory Notice), 
representing the triumphs ujion the occasion of 
the visit of Charles V., to Bologna. 

The Duke of Milan, in this play, desires to " in- 
clude all jars," not only with " triumphs," but 
with "mirth and rare solemnity." The "mirth" 
and the "solemnity" would include the "pageant" 
— the favourite show of the days of Elizabeth. 
The "masque" (in its hiijhest si^'nification) w;ui a 
more refined and elabumte device than the pageant ; 
and, therefore, we shall confine the remainder of 
this illustration to some few general observations 
on the subject of " page.-ints." 

We may infer, from the expression of Julia in 
the fourth Act, 

" At Pentecost, 
When all our pageants of delight were pUy'd," 

that the pageant was a religious ceremonial, con- 
nected with the festivals of the church. And ao 
it originally was. The " pageants " perfonno<l at 
Coventry wore, for the most part, " dramatic 
mysteries ; " and the city, according to Dugdalo, 



was famous, before the suppression of the monas- 
teries, for the pageants that were played there on 
Corpus Christi day. " These pageants," says the 
fine old topographer, " were acted with mighty 
state and reverence by the frj-ers of this house, 
and contained the story of the New Testament, 
which was composed into old English rhyme. The 
theatres for the several scenes were very large and 
high, and being placed u]>on wheels, were drawn to 
all the eminent places of the city, for the better 
advantage of the spectators." It appears, from 
Mr. Sharp's Dissertation on the Coventry Pageants, 
that the trading companies were accustomed to 
perform these plays; and it will be i-emembered 
that when Elizabeth was entertained by Leicester 
at Kenilv.-orth, the "old Coventry play of Hock 
Tuesday" formed a principal feature of the amuse- 
ments. The play of Hock Tuesday commemorates 
the great victory over the Danes, a.d. 1002, and 
it was exhibited before the queen by Captain Cox 
and many others from Coventry. The Whitsun 
plays at C^hester, called the Chester Pageants, or 
Chester Mysteries, were also performed by the 
trading companies of that ancient city. Ai'ch- 
deacon l^ogers, who died in 1569, has left an 
account of the Whitsun plays, which he saw in 
Chester, which shews that the pageant-vehicles 

there, like those of Coventry, were scaffolds upon 
wheels. Mr. Collier, in his valuable History of 
the Stage, mentions a fact, given by Hall the 
historian, that in 1511, at the revels at Whitehall, 
Henry VIH. and his lords "entered the hall in a 
pageant on wheels.'' 

It is clear from the passage in which Julia 
describes her own part in the " pageants of 
delight," — 

" Ariadne passioning 
For Theseus' perjury and unjust fliglit," — 

that the pageant had begun to assume something 
of the classical character of the masque. But it 
had certainly not become the gorgeous entertain- 
ment which Jousou has so glowingly described, as 
"of power to surprise with delight, and steal away 
the spectatoi's from themselves." The pageant in 
which Julia acted at Pentecost was probably such 
as Shakspere had seen in the streets of Coventry, 
or in some stately baronial hall of his rich county. 
The "pageant on wheels" in which Henry and his 
lords entered his hall of revels was evidently the 
same sort of machine as that described by Dugdale, 
and which is here copied, with a slight adaptation, 
from a representation in Sharp's Dissertation. 




" Assuredly that criticism of Shakspere wQl alono be geniid which in reverential. The 
Englishman who, without reverence, a proud and affectionate reverence, can utter the name of 
William Shakspere, stands disquahfied for the office of critic. He wants one at least of the very 
Benses, the language of which he is to employ; and will discourse at best but aa a blind man, 
while the whole hannonious creation of light and shade, with all its subtle interchange of 
deepening and dissolving colours, rises in silence to the silent fiat of the uprising Apollo." • Thus 
a "reverential" criticism will not only be most genial,— it will be most intelligible. Ilemingc 
and Condell, in their Preface to the first collected edition of Shakspere, truly say,—" Read him 
again and again; and if then you do not like him, surely you are in some manifest danger not 
to understand him." To love Shakspere best is best to understand him. And yet, from the 
days of Rymer, who described Othello as a " bloody farce, without salt or savour," we have 
had a " wilderness " of critics, each one endeavouring, " merely by his ipse dixit, to treat as con- 
temptible what he ha.s not intellect enough to comprehend, or soul to feel, without assigning 
any reason, or referring his opinion to any demonstrative principle."t In offering an analysis of the 
various critical opinions upon each i)lay, we must, of necessity, present our readers with many 
remarks which are not " reverential." But we trust, also, to be able to shew, in most cases by 
authorities which do refer to some "demonstrative principle," that those who have uttered the 
name of Shakspere " without reverence," aa too many of the commentators have done, are " but 
stammering interpreters of the general and almost idolatrous admiration of Lis countrymen."* 

Without any reference to the period of the poet's life in which the Two Gentlemen of Verona 
was written, Theobald tells us, "This is one of Shakspere's worst plays." Hanmer thinks 
Shakspere "only enlivened it with some speeches and lines thrown in here and there." Upton 
determines " that if any proof can be drawn from manner and style, this jilay must be tent packing, 
and seek for its parent elsewhere." Johnson, though singularly favourable in his opinion of this 
play, says of it. "there is a strange mixture of knowledge and ignorance, of ciire and negligence." 
Mrs. Lenox (who, in the best slip-slop manner, does not hesitate to pass judgment upon many of 
the greatest works of Shakspere), says, "'tis generally allowed that the plot, conduct, manners, 
and incidents of this play are extremely deficient." On the other haml, Pope gives the style 
of this comedy the high praise of being " natural and unaffected ; " although he complnius that 
the familiar parts are "composed of the lowest and most trifling conceits, to be accounted for 
only by the gross taste of the age he lived in." Johnson says, " when I read this play, I cannot 
but think that I find, both in the serious and ludicrous scenes, the language and sentimenta 
of Shakspere. It is not, indeed, one of his most powerful effusions ; it baa neither many divcraitiei 

♦ Coleridge, Literary Remains, vol. li. p. 63. f Id. p. II. 

I Schlcgel's Lectures on Dramatic Literature, Black's Translation, vol. 11. p. 101. 

Comedies. — Vol I. F 



of character, nor striking delineations of life. But it abounds in yvcafiai (sententious observationy) 
beyond most of Lis plays ; and few have more lines or i^assages which, singly considered, are 
eminently beautiful." Coleridge, the best of critics on Shakspei-e, has no remarli on this pLiy 
beyond calling it " a sketch." Hazlitt, in a more elaborate criticism, follows out the same 
idea : " This is little more than the first outlines of a comedy loosely sketched in. It is the story 
of a novel dramatised with very little labour or pretension ; yet there are passages of high 
poetical spirit, and of inimitable quaintness of humour, which ai'e undoubtedly Shakspere's, and 
there is throughout the conduct of the fable a cai'eless grace and felicity which marks it for his." 
AVe scarcely think that Coleridge and Hazlitt are correct in considering this play " a sketch," if it 
be taken as a whole. In the fifth Act, unquestionably, the outlines " are loosely sketched in." 
The unusual bhortness of that Act would indicate that it is, in some degree, hurried and unfinished. 
If the text be correct which makes Valentine offer to give up Silvia to Proteus, there cannot be 
a doubt that the poet intended to have worked out this idea, and to have exhibited a struggle 
of self-denial, and a sacrifice to friendship, which verj^ young persons are inclined to consider 
possible. Friendship has its romance as well as love. In the other parts of the comedy there 
is certainly extremely little that can be called sketchy. They appear to us to be very carefully 
finished. There may be a deficiency of power, but not of elaboration. A French Avriter who 
Laa analysed all Shakspere's plays (M. Paul Duport), considers that this play possesses a 
powerful charm, which he attributes to the brilliant and poetical colouring of its stjde. He 
thinks, and justly, that a number of graceful comparisons, and of vivid and picturesque images, 
here take the place of the bold and natural conceptions (the " vital and oi'ganic " style, as Coleridge 
expresses it) which are the general charactei'istic of liis genius. In these elegant generalizations, 
M. Duport properly recognises the vagueness and indecision of the youthful poet.* The remarks 
of A. W. Schlegel on this comedy are, as usual, acute and philosophical: — "The Two Gentlemen 
of Verona paints the irresolution of love, and its infidelity towards friendship, in a pleasant, but, 
in some degree, superficial manner ; we might almost say with the levity of mind which a passion 
suddenly entertained, and as suddenly given up, pre-supposes. The faithless lover is at last 
forgiven without much difl&culty by his first mistress, on account of his ambiguous repentance. For 
the more serious part, the premeditated flight of the daughter of a prince, the captivity of her 
father along with herself by a band of robbers, of which one of the two gentlemen, the faithful 
and banished friend, has been compulsively elected captain ; for all this a peaceful solution is 
soon found. It is as if the course of the world was obliged to accommodate itself to a transient 
youthful caprice, called love." f An English writer, who has well studied Shakspere, and has published 
a volume of very praiseworthy research,^ distinguished for correct taste and good feeling (although 
some of its theories may be reasonably doubted), considers this comedy Shakspere's first dramatic 
production, and imagines that it might have been written at Stratford, and have formed his 
chief recommendation to the Blackfriars company. He adds,—" This play appears to me enriched 
with all the freshness of youth; with strong indications of his future matured poetical power 
and dramatic effect. It is the day-si^-ing of genius, full of promise, beauty, and quietude, 
before the sun arisen to its splendour. I can likewise discern in it his peculiar gradual 
development of character, his minute touches, each tending to complete a portrait ; and if these 
arc not executed by the master hand, as shewn in his later plays, they are by the same apprentice- 
hand, each totich of strength sufficient to harmonize with the whole." Johnson says of this play, 
" I am inclined to believe that it was not very successful." It is difficult to judge of the accuracy 
of this belief. The "quietude," the "minute touches," may not have been exactly suited to an 
audience who had a» yet been unaccustomed to the delicate lights and shadows of the Elizabethan 
drama. Shakspere, in some degree, stood in the same relation to his predecessors, as Raphael 
did to the eadier painters. The gentle gradations, the accurate distances, the harmony and repose, 
had to bo superadded to the hard outlines, the strong colouring, and the disproportionate parts 
of the older artistn, iu tlie one case as in the other. But our dramatist, who unquestionably 
always looked to what the ikuje demanded from him, however he may have looked beyond the 
mere wants of his present audience, put enough of attractive matter into the Two Gentlemen 

• Ks^nis Lillir.iircs »ur Sh.iksi.ti f, tome u. ji. ?,■,!. Paris 1S28 

r ih^l"'l',°" V'?"k-''' A^' «"," I-i'erature, Black's translation', vol. ii. p. ISG. / 

: Shakspere s Autobiographical rocms, &c. By Charles Armitage Brown. 1S3S 


of Veroua, to command its popularity. No "clown" that had api.cared on the stage U-fure 
his time could at all approarh to Lauiico in real humour. But the downs that the celehnit.-d 
Tarletou represented had mere words of bufloouery put in their mouths ; and it is not to U 
wondered at that Shakspere retained some of their ribaldry. It would be some time before he 
would be strong enough to assert the rights of his own genius, as he unquestionably did in his later 
plays. He must, as a young writer, have been sometimes furced into a sacrifice to the iwpulnr 

Mr. Boaden. as it is stated by Malonc, is of opinion that the Two Gentlemen of Veruna 
contains the germ of other plays which Shakspere afterwards wrote." The exprousion, "germ of 
other plays," is somewhat undefined. There are in this play the germ of sevend incidents and 
situations which occur in the poet's maturer works— the germ of some other of his most admired 
charactei-3— the germ of one or two of his most beautiful descriptions. When Julia is deputed by 
Proteus to bear a letter to Silvia, urging the love which ho ought to have kept sacred fur hcrfcclf, 

we are reminded of Viola, in Twelfth Night, being sent to plead the duke's passion for Olivia, 

although the other circumstances are widely diflFerent; when wo see Julia wearing her boy's 
disguise, with a modest archness and spirit, our thoughts involuntai-y turn not only to Viola, but to 
Rosalind, and to Imogen, three of the most exquisite of Shakspere's exquisite creations of fem:de 
characters ; — when Valentine, in the forest of Mantua, exclaims, 

" How use doth breed a habit in a man ! 
This shadowy desert, unfrequented woods, 
I better brook than flourishing peopled towns," 

we hear the first faint notes of the same delicious train of thought, though greatly modified by the 

different circumstances of the speaker, that we find in the banished Duke of the Forest of 

Ardennes : — 

" Now my co-matet, and brothers in exile. 
Hath not old rustum made this life more sweet 
Than that of painted pomp?" 

\Mien Valentine exclaims, 

•' .\nd why not death, rather than living torment f " 
we recollect the grand passage in Macbeth, where the same thought is exalted, and rciukrid 
terrible, by the peculiar circumstances of the epeaker'a guilt : — 

" Better be with the dead, 
Whom we, to gain our place, have sent to peace. 
Than on the torture of the mind to lie 
In restless ecstaiiy." 

There are, generally speaking, resemblances throughout the works of Shakspere, which none but 
his genius could have preserved from being imitations. But, taking the particular instance 
before us, when, with matured powers, he came to deal with somewhat similar incidents and 
characters in other plays, and to repeat the leading idea of a particular sentiment, we can, without 
difficulty, perceive how vast a difference had been produced by a few years of reflection and experience ; 
— how he had made to himself an entirely new school of art, whose practice wat as superior to 
his own conceptions as embodied in his first works, as it was beyond the mastery of his contem- 
poraries, or of any who have succeeded him. It was for this reason that Poikj calletl the style 
of the Two Gentlemen of Verona "simple and unaffected." It was opix»8cd to Shak»i>erc'8 
later style, which is teeming with allusion upon allusion, dropped out of the exceeding richer 
of his glorious imagination. With the exception of the few obsolete words, and the unfamiliar 
application of words still in use, this comedy has, to our rninds, a very modem air. The thotight^ 
are natund and obvious, the ima;;es familiar and general. The most<}d p.-ui^.-igcs have a 
character of grace rather than of beauty ; the elegance of a youthful poet aiming to be coitccI, 
instead of the splendour of the perfect artist, subjecting every crude aud apparently unmanageable 
thought to the wonderful alchemy of his all-penetrating genius. Look, in this comedy, at the 
images, for example, which are derived from external nature, aud compare them with the same 
class of images in the later plays. We might select several illustration.-*, but one will suffice : — 

" As the most favour'd bud 
Is eaten by the canker ere it blow; 

• Malone's Shakspere, by Boswell, vol. ii. p. 32. 


Even so uy love the young and tender wit 
Is turn'd to folly ; blasting in the bud. 
Losing his verdure even in the prime." 
Here the image is feeble, because it is generalized. But compare it with the same image iu Eomeo 

• • But he, his own affection's counsellor, 

Is to himself— I will not say how true, 

Hut to himself so secret and so close, 

So far from sounding and discovering, 

As is the bud bit with an envious worm, 

Ere he can spread his sweet leaves to the air, 

Or dedicate his beauti/ io the sim." 
Johnson, as we have already seen, considered this comedy to be wanting iu "diversity of 
character." The action, it must be observed, is mainly sustained by Proteus and Valentine, and 
by Julia and Silvia; and the conduct of the plot is relieved by the familiar scenes in which Speed 
and Lauuce appear. The other actors are very subordinate, and we scarcely demand any great 
diver.sity of character amongst them ; but it seems to us, with regard to Proteus and Valentine, 
Julia and Silvia, Speed and Launce, that the characters are exhibited, as it were, in pairs, upon 
a principle of very defined though delicate contrast. We will endeavour to point out these 
somewhat nice distinctions. 

Coleridge says, in ' The Friend/ " It is Shakspere's peculiar excellence, that throughout the whole 
of his splendid picture gallery (the reader will excuse the acknowledged inadequacy of this 
metaphor), we find individuality everywhere, — mere portrait nowhere. In all his various chai-acters 
we still feel ourselves communing with the same nature, which is everywhere present as the 
vegetable sap in the branches, sprays, leaves, buds, blossoms, and fruits, their shapes, tastes, and 
odours. Speaking of the effect, that is, his works themselves, we may define the excellence of their 
method as consisting in that just proportion, that union and interpenetration of the universal and 
the particular, which must ever pervade all works of decided genius and true science." Nothing 
can be more just and more happy than this definition of the distinctive quality of Shakspere's 
works, — a quality which puts them so immeasui'ably above all other works, — "the union and 
interpenetration of the universal and the particular." It constitutes the peculiar charm of his 
matured style, — it furnishes the key to the surpassing excellence of his representations, whether 
of facts which are cognizable by the understanding or by the senses, iu which, a single word 
individualizes the- "particular" object described or alluded to, and, without separating it from the 
"universal," to which it belongs, gives it all the value of a vivid colour in a picture, perfectly 
distinct, but also completely harmonious. The skill which he attained in this wonderful mastery 
over the whole world of materials for poetical construction, was the result of continued experiment. 
In his characters, especially, we see the gradual growth of this extraordinary power, as clearly 
as we perceive the differences between his early and his matured forms of expi-ession. But 
it is evident to us, that, in his very earliest delineations of character, he had conceived the 
principle which was to be developed in "his splendid picture gallery." In the comedy before us, 
Valentine and Proteus are the "two gentlemen," — Julia and Silvia the two ladies "beloved," — 
Speed and Launce the two " clownish" servants. And yet how different is the one from the other 
of the same class. The German critic, Gervinus, has honoured us by treating " the two gentlemen," 
the " two ladies beloved," and the two " clownish servants," on the same principle of contrast. 
Proteu.'f, who is first represented to us as a lover, is evidently a very cold and calculating one. He 
is " a votary to fond desire ; " but he complains of his mistress that she has metamorphosed him : — 

" Made me neglect my studies,— lose my time." 
Ho ventures, liowcver, to write to Jidia; and when he has her answer, "her oath for love, her 
honours pawn," he imme'.l lately takes the most prudent view of their position : — 

" O that our fathers would applaud our loves." 
But he has not decision enough to demand this approbation : — 

" I fcar'd to shew my father Julia's letter. 
Lest lie should take exceptions to my love." 

He parts with liis mistress in a very formal and well-behaved style;— they exchange rings, but 
Julia has first offered "this remembrance" for her sake;— he makes a common-place vow of cou- 


stancy, whilst Julia rushes away in tears;— he quits Verona for Milan, lunl h;i8 a now luvo at (irsl 
night the instant he sees Silvia. The moilo in which he sets about betraying his fricucl, and wooing 
his new mistress, is eminently characteristic of the calculating selfishncBS of his nature :— 

" If I can cluck my crTini» love, I will ; 
If not, to roinpa-is her I '11 iiso my kkill," 

Ho is of that very numerous class of men who would always bo virtuous, if virtue would accomplitU 

their object as well as vice ;— who prefer truth to lying, when lying is unnecessary ; -and who have 

a law of justice in their own miiuls, which if they can observe thoy " will ;" but " if not,"— if thoy 

find themselves poor en-ing mortnls, which thoy iufiillibly do,— they think 

" Their stars are more in fault than they." 

This Proteus is a veiy contemptible fellow, who finally exhibits himself as a ruffian and a coward, 

and is punished by the heaviest infliction that the generous Valentino could bestow— hi^ forgis 

Generous, indeed, and most confiding, is our Valentine— a perfect contrast to Proteus. In tb. 

scene he laughs at the passion of Proteus, as if he knew that it was alien to his nature ; but when 

he has become enamoured himself, with what enthusiasm he proclaims his dorotion : — 

" Why, man, she is mine own ; 
And I as rich in having such a jewel 
As twenty seas, if all their sand were jicarl." 

In this passionate admiration we have the germ of Romeo, and so also in the .scene where VuK ntino 
is banished : — 

" And why not death, rather than livin;,- loriiu-nt » " 

But here is only a sketch of the strength of a deep ami all-absorbing passion. The whole spcLch 

of Valentine upon his banishment is forcible and elegant ; but compare him with Romeo in the 

same condition : — 

" Heaven is here 
Wlierc Juliet lives ; and every cat, and dop. 
And little mouse, every unworthy thing, 
r.ive here in heaven, and may look on her, 
Hut Ilomeo may not." 

We are not wandering from our purpose of contrasting Proteus and Valentine, by showing that the 
character of Valentine is compounded of some of the elements that we find in Romeo; for the 
strong impulses of both these lovers are as much opposed as it is possible to the subtle devices of 
Proteus. The confiding Valentine goes to his banishment with the cold comfort that Proteus givet 

liim : — 

" Hope is a lover's stafT; walk hence with" 

He is compelled to join the outlaws;, but he makes conditions with them that exhibit the goodnos* 
of his nature ; and we hear no more of him till the catastroi>he. when his traitorous friend is for- 
given with the same confiding generosity that has governed all his intercourse with him. Wo ha\H> 
little doubt of the corruption, or, at any rate, of the unfinished nature, of the passage in which lie in 
made to give up Silvia to his false friend, — for that would bo entirely inconsistent with the ardent 
character of his love, and an act of injustice towards Julia, which he could not commit. But it in 
perfectly natnnd and probable that he should receive Proteus a^ain into his confidence, upon hia 
declaration of "hearty sorrow," and that he should do so upon principle : — 

" Who by repentance is not satisfied, 
Is nor of heaven, nor earth." 

It is, to our minds, quite delightful to find in this, which wo ^-onsider ninong-t tiie earliest of .-- 
spere's plays, that exhibition of the real Christian spirit of charity which, more or less, pervade 
his writings; but which, more than any other quality, has made some per.'ons, who deem their own 
morality as of a higher and purer order, cry out against them, as giving encouragement to c\d 
doers. We shall have occasion hereafter to ppeak of the noble lessons which Shakupcro t«achi'n 
dramatically (and not according to the childish devices of those who would make the drainatint 
write a "moral" at the end of five acts, upon the approved plan of a Fable in a n]>clling'book), and 
we therefore pass over, for the present, those profound critics who 8,»y " ho has no moral ptirp<i»c in 
view."* But there are some who are not quite so pedantically wise as to affirm "ho i>aid no nft«»n- 
tion to that retributive justice which, when htunan affairs are righiy underHtoo<l, pcnratles tlicni 

• Lardner'f. CycIop.TdIa, Litemry and Scientific Mi-n, vol. ii. p IM. 



all ;'•* but who yet think that Proteus ought to have besu at least banished, or sent to the galleys 
for a few years with the outlaws ;— that Angelo, in Measure for Measure, should have been hanged;— 
that Leontes, in the Winter's Taie, was not sufficiently punished for his cruel jealousy by sixteen 
years of eoitow anl repentance ;— that lachimo, in Cymbeline, is not treated with poetical justice 

when Posthumus says, — 

" Kneel not to me : 
The power that I have on you is to spare you ; "— 

anil that Prospero is a very weak magician not to apply his power to a better purpose than only to 
give his wicked brother and his followers a little passing punishment ;— weak indeed, when he has 

them in his hands, to exclaim, — 

" Thouirh witli tlieir high wrongs I am struck to the quick, 
Vet with my nobler reason 'gainst my fury 
Do I take part : the rarer action is 
In virtue than in vengeance : they being penitent, 
The sole drift of my purpose doth extend 
Not a frown further: go release them, Ariel." 

Not 80 thought Shakspere. He, that never represented crime as virtue, had the largest pity for 
the criminal. " He has never varnished over wild and blood-thirsty passions with a pleasing 
exterior— never clothed crime and want of principle with a false shew of greatness of soul ;" t but, on 
the other hand, he has never made the criminal a monster, and led us to flatter ourselves that he is 
not a man. It is as a man, subject to the same infirmities as all are who are born of woman, that 
he represents Proteus, and lachimo, and other of the lesser criminals, as receiving pardon upon 
repentance. It is not so much that thej^ are deserving of pardon, but that it would be inconsistent 
with the characters of the pardoners that they should exercise their power with severity. Shakspere 
lived in an age when the vindictive passions were too frequently let loose by men of all sects and 
opinions, — and much too. frequently in the name of that religion which came to teach peace and good 
will. Is it to be objected to him, then, that wherever he could he asserted the supremacy of charity 
and mercy ;— that he taught men the "quality " of that blessed principle which 

" Droppeth as the gentle dew from heaven ; " — 
that he proclaimed — no doubt to the annoyance of all self-worshippers — that " the web of our life 
is of a mingled yarn, good and ill together;" — and that he asked of those who would be hard upon 
the wretched, "Use every man after his desert, and who shall 'scape whipping?" ' We may be per- 
mitted to believe that this large toleration had its influence in an age of racks and gibbets ; and we 
know not how much of this charitable spirit may have come to the aid of the more authoritative 
and holier teaching of the same principle, — forgotten even by the teachers, but gradually finding its 
way into the heart of the multitude, — till human iDunishments at length were compelled to be sub- 
servient to other influences than those of the angry passions, and the laws could only dare to ask 
for justice, but not for vengeance. 

The generous, confiding, courageous, and forgiving spirit of Valentine, are well appreciated by 
the Duke — "Thou art a gentleman." In this praise is included all the virtues which Shakspere 
desired to represent in the character of Valentine ; — the absence of which virtues he has also 
indicated in the selfish Proteus. The Duke adds, "and well derived." "Thou art a gentleman" 
in " thy spirit" — a gentleman in " thy unrivalled merit ; " and thou hast the honours of ancestry — 
the further advantage of honourable progenitors. This line, in one of Shakspere's earliest plays, 
is a key to some of his personal feelings. He was himself a true gentleman, though the child of 
humble parents. His exquisite delineations of the female character establish the surpassing refine- 
ment and purity of his mind in relation to women ; — and thus, if there were no other evidence of 
the son of tlie wool-stapler of Stratford being a " gentleman," this one prime feature of the character 
would be his most pre-eminently. Well then might he, looking to himself, assert the principle that 
rank and ancestry are additions to the character of the gentleman, but not indispensable component 
parts. '■ Thou art a gentleman, and well derived." 

We have dwelt so long upon the contrasts in the characters of the "two gentlemen," Proteus 
and Valentino, that we may appear to have forgotten our purpose of also tracing the distinctive 
peculiarities of the two ladies "beloved." Julia, in the sweetest feminine tenderness, is entirely 

• Lardncr's Cyclopaedia, Literary and Scientific Men, vol. iii. p. 122 
t A. \y. Schlegel, Black, vol. ii. p. 137. 



worthy of the poet of Juliet an.l Imogen. Amidst her iloop ami sustmning lore nho boa all th* 
playfuluess that belongs to the true woman. When she receives the letter of Protoug, the ■trugglo 
between l.ur aflected indifll-rouce, and her reJ disposition to cherish a deep nffootion, in exce^liugly 
pretty. Then comes, and very quickly, the development of the change whioU real lovo works?— 
the plighting her troth with Proteus,— the sorrow for his absence,— the flight to him.— the grief 
for his perjury,— the forgivenes.?. How full of heart and : " s in all her cond- " ' hiw 

discovered the inconstancy of Pi-oteus ! How beiiuiiful an i-i tluMv of all \: ^ -her 

of her f;iithless lover, or of his now mistres-s. Of the one she says, 

•' Hecnusc I love him, I nniit pity him ; " 
the other she describes, without a touch of envv, as 

" .\ virtuous gentlewoman, milJ, and bvautirul." 
Silvia is a character of much less intensity of feeling. She plays with her accepted lover as with 
a toy given to her for her amusement; she delights in a contf?t of words between him and bin 
rival Thurio ; she avows she is betrothed to Valentino, when she reproves Proteus for his perfidy, 
but she allows Proteus to send for her picture, which i.-*, at least, not the act of one who strongly 
felt and resented his treachery to his friend. When she resolves to escape from her primn!, she 
does not go forth to danger and difficulty with the spirit of Julia,— "a true devoted pilgrim,"— but 
she places herself under the protection of Eglamour— ("a very perfect gentle knight," as Chattccr 
would have called him), 

" For the ways arc dangerous to pass." 

She goes to her banished lover, but she flies from her father — 

" To keep me from a most unholy match." 
When she encounters Proteus in the forest, she, indeed, spiritedly avows her love for Valentine, 
and her hatred for himself; nor is there, in any of the slight distinctions which we have point«l 
out, any real inferiority in her character to that of Julia. She is only more under the influeuco of 
circumstances. Julia, by her decision, subdues the circumstances of her situation to her own will. 

Turn we now to Speed and Liunce, the two '.' clownish" servants of Valentine and Prot^'un. 

In a note introducing the first scene between Speed and Proteus, I'ope says, " This whole scene, 
like many others in these plays (somo of which I believe, were written by Shakspere, and others 
interpolated by the players), is composed of the lowest and most trifling conceits, to be accoimted 
for only by the gross taste of the age he lived in ; pojntlo ut plactrcnt. I wish I ha<l authority 
to leave them out." There are passages in Shakspero which an editor would desire to leave out, if 
he consulted only the standard of taste in his own age; just as there are passages in Popo which wo 
now consider filthy and corrupting, which the wits and fine ladies of the Court of Anno only r-garded 
as playful and piijuant. The scenes, however, in which Speed and Launce are prominent, with the 
exception of a few obscure allusions, which will not be discovered unless a commeutator points 
them out, and of one piece of plain speaking in Launce, which is refinement itself when comi>ared 
with the classical works of the Dean of St. Patrick's, — these scenes offer a remarkable in^tAnco of 
the reform which Shakspero was enabled to effect in the conduct of the English stage, an<l which, 
without doubt, banished a great deal of what had been offensive to good manners, as well as 
good taste. " The clown" or " fool" of the earlier English drama was introduced into < . e. 

He came on between the acts, and sometimes interrupted even the hccuc.s by his i ry. 

Occasionally the author set down a few words for him to speak ; but out of these ho ha<l to spin 
a monologue of doggerel verses created by his " extemponil wit." The " Jca^ts " of RichanI 
Tarletou, the most celebrated of these clowns, were published in IGll ; and fortunate it muf>t have 
been for the morals of our ancestors that Shakspero constructed dialogue for his "Clowns," and 
insisted on their adhering to it : " Let those that play your clowns speak no more than is set down 
for them." The "Clown" was the successor of the "Vice" of the old Moralities; and ho was the 
representative of the domestic "Jester" that flourished before and during the oge of Shakspero. 
We shall have frequent occasion to return to this subject. The " clownish " servant was sotnethiog 
intermediate between the privileged "fool" of the old drama, and the i>crt l.-icqucy of thn Liter 
comedy. But he originally stood in the place of the genuine "Clown ;" and bis "conceit*" are to 
be regartled partly as a reflection of the manners of the most refined, whose wit, in a grcst degree, 
consisted in a play upon words, and partly as a law of the establiifhed drama, which even Shakxpon' 
could not dispense with, if he had desired so to do. But his instinctive knowledge of the valuo of 



his dramatic materials led him to retain the "Clowns" amongst other inheritances of the old stage; 
and who that has seen the use he has made of the "allowed fool" in Twelfth Night, and As You 
Like It, and All's "Well that Ends Well, and especially in Lear,— of the country clown in Love's 
Labour's Lost and The Merchant of Venice, — and of the "clownish" or witty servant in the Two 
Gentlemen of Verona, will regret that he did not cast away what Pope has called " low " and 
" trifling," determining to retain a machinery equally adapted to the relief of the tragic and the 
heightening of the comic, and entirely in keeping with what we now call the romantic drama, — an 
edifice of which Shakspere found the scaffolding raised and the stone quarried, but which it was 
reserved for him alone to build up upon a plan in which the most apparently incongruous parts 
were subjected to the laws of fitness and proportion, and wherein even the grotesque (hke the grinning 
heads in our fine Gothic cathedrals) was in harmony with the beautiful and the sublime. 

Speed and Launce are both punsters; but Speed is by far the more inveterate one. He begins 
with a pun — my master "is shipp'd already, and I have play'd the sheep (ship) in losing him." 
The same play upon words which the ship originates runs through the scene ; and we are by no means 
sure that if Shakspere made Verona a sea-port in ignorance (which we very much doubt), — if, like 
his own Hotspur, he had "forgot the map," — whether he would, at any time, have converted 
Valentine into a land traveller, and have lost his pun upon a better knowledge. Of these apparent 
violations of propriety we have already spoken in the Introductory Notice. In the scene before 
us, Speed establishes his character for a " quick wit ; " Launce, on the contrary, very soon earns the 
reputation of "a mad-cap" and "an ass." And yet Launce can pun as perseveriugly as Speed. But 
he can do something more. He can throw in the most natural touches of humour amongst his 
quibbles ; and, indeed, he altogether forgets his quibbles when he is indulging his own peculiar vein. 
That vein is unquestionably drollery, — as Hazlitt has well described it, — the richest farcical drollery. 
His descriptions of his leave-taking, while "the dog all this while sheds not a tear," and of the dog's 
misbehaviour when he thrust " himself into the company of three or four gentleman-like dogs," are 
perfectly irresistible. We must leave thee, Launce ; but we leave thee with less regret, for thou 
haat worthy successors. Thou wert among the first fruits, we think, of the creations of the greatest 
comic genius that the world has seen, and thou wilt endure for ever, with Bottom, and Malvolio, 
and Parolles, and Dogberry. Thou wert conceived, perhap.?, under that humble roof at Stratford, 
to gaze upon which all nations have since sent forth their pilgrims ! Or, perhaps, when the young 
poet was, for the first time, left alone in the solitude of London, he looked back upon that shelter 
of his boyhood, and shadowed out his own parting in thine, Launce ! 

^■^.^.^S^".-^: -3^"^ 

irf-l.^- . s 



^— - -» -:^ 



State of the Tkxt, and TJhbonolooy, of Love's Labour's Lost.* 

This play was one of the fifteen published in Shakspere's lifetime. The first edition nppcare«1 
in 1598, under the following title : " A jjleasant conceited couicdio, called Louct I-alors Lost- 
.\s it was presented before her Highnes this last Christmas. Newly corrected and augmented by 
W. Shakespere." No subsequent edition appeared in a separate form till 1631. In the first 
collected edition of Shak-spere's plays, the folio of 1623, the text can scarcely 1« said to difTer. 
except by accident, from the original quai-to. The editors of the firft folio without doubt took 
the quarto as their copy. The manifold errors of the press in the Latin words of the first edition 
have not been corrected in the second. We have still Dtciisima for Dictynna, and lome for lone. 
Steevens, in a note to Heury V., obsei-ves, " It is veiy certain that authors, in the time of 
Shakspere did not correct the press for themselves. I hardly ever saw, in one of the old plays, a 
sentence of either Latin, Italian, or French without the most ridiculous blunders." This neglect 
on the part of dramatic authors may be accounted for by the fact that the press wu.s not their 
medium of publication ; but it is remarkable that such should have been perpetunte<l through 
four of the collected editions of Shakspere's works, and not have been corrected till the time of 
Rowe and Theobald. 

We have seen, from the title of the first edition of Love's Labour's Lost, that when it was 
presented before Queen Elizabeth, at the Christmas of 1597, it had been "newly corrected and 
augmented." As no edition of the comedy, before it was corrected and augmented, is known to 
exist (though, as in the case of the unique Hamlet of 1C03, one may some day be discovered), wo 
have no proof that the few allusions to temporary circumstances, which are supposed in some 
degree to fix the date of the play, may not apply to the augmented copy only. Thus, when Moth 
refers to " the dancing horse " who was to teach Armado how to reckon what " deuce-ace amounts 
to," the fact that Banks's horse (See Illustrations to Act I. Scene II.) first appeared in London 
in 15S9 does not prove that the original play might not have been written before 15S9. This date 
gives it an earlier appearance than Malone would assign to it, who first settled it as 1591, and 
afterwards as 1594. A supposed allusion to " The Metamoi7)hosi8 of Ajax," by Sir John Harrington, 
printed in 1596, is equally unimportant with reference to the original comi>o3ition of the play. 
The " finished representation of colloquial excellence " + in the beginning of the fifth act, is supposed 
to be an imitation of a pa.ssage in Sidney's " Arcadia," first printed in 1590. The passage might 
have been introduced in the augmented copy ; to say nothing of the fact that the " Arcadia " was 
known in manuscript before it was printed. Lastly, the mask in the fifth act, where the King 
and his lords appear in Russian habits, and the allusions to Muscovites which this mask producex, ore 
supposed by Warbui-ton to have been suggested by the public concern for the settlement of a treaty 
of commerce with Russi.a, in 1591. But the learned comuientjitor overlooks a passage in Hall's 
Chronicle, which shows that a mask of Muscovites was a court recreation in the time of Henry VIII.* 

In the extrinsic evidence, therefore, which this comedy supplies, there is nothing whatever to 

• Lore's Labour's Lost. The title of thi'i play stands n follows in the folio of 1fi2.1 : " Lnuet Labour 't Lml." Th« 
modes in which thej^enitive case and tho contraction of it aOcr a sub\tantivc, arc printcii in the titles of other plart in 

this edition, and in the earlier copies, leads us to l>clievc that the author intended to r " ' - ■ ' r ,..-•- r ,i . . .. i , ,i •• 

The apostrophe is not given as tlic mark of the genitive case in these instanrcf — "V ' 

liights Dream," — (so printed.) But when the verb i/ forms a part of the title, the .i; ' , ' » 

tcell that ends icell." W'k do not think ourselves Justified, therefore, in print;ng either " Love's Labour Lo>t, or " L<i*e't 
I.abours Lost," — as some have recommended. 

t Johnson. t See Illuitrationt to Act V. 



disprove the theory which we entertain, that, before it had been '• corrected find augmented," Love's 
Labour 's Lost was one of the plays produced by Shaksperc about 1589, wlien, being only twenty- 
five years of age, he was a joint-proprietor in the Blackfriars Theatre. The intrinsic evidence 
appears to ns entirely to support this opinion; and as this evidence involves several curious 
particulars of literary history, we have to request the reader's indulgence whilst we examine it some- 
what in detail. 

Coleridge, who always speaks of this comedy as a "juvenile drama" — "a young author's first 

^vork" says, "The characters iu this play are either impersonated out of Shakspere's own 

multiformity by imaginative self-position, or out of such as a country-town and a sclioolhoys observation 
mi'jht supply."* For this production, Shakspere, it is presumed, found neither characters nor 
plot iu any previous romance or drama. " I have not hitherto discovered," says Steevens, " any 
novel on which this comedy appears to have been founded ; and yet the story of it has most of the 
features of an ancient romance." Steevens might have more correctly said that the story has most 
of the features which would be derived from an acquaintance with the ancient romances. The 
action of the comedy, and the higher actors, are the creations of one who was imbued with the 
romantic spirit of the middle ages — who was conversant " with their Courts of Love, and all that 
lighter drapery of chivalry, which engaged even mighty kings with a sort of serio-comic interest, 
and m-ay well be supposed to have occupied more completely the smaller priuces."t Our poet 
himself, in this play, alludes to the Spanish romances of chivalry : 

"This cliild of fancy that Arinado hight, 
For interim to our studies, sliall relate 
In high-born -n-ords tlie worth of many a knight 
From tawny Spain, lost in the world's debate." 

With these materials, and out of his own " imaginative self-position," might Shakspere have readily 
produced the King and Princess, the lords and ladies, of this comedy : — and he might have caught 
the tone of the Court of Elizabeth, — the wit, the play upon words, the forced attempts to say and do 
clever things, — without any actual contact with the society which was accessible to him after his fame 
conferred distinction even upon the highest and most accomplished patron. The more ludicrous 
characters of the drama were unquestionably within the range of " a schoolboy's observation." 

And first, of Don Armado, whom Scott calls " the Euphuist."^ The historical events which 
are interwoven with the plot of Scott's " Monastery " must have happened about 1562 or 1563, before 
the authority of the unhappy Queen of Scots was openly trodden under foot by Murray and her 
rebellious lords ; and she had at least the personal liberty, if not the free will, of a supreme ruler. 
Our great novelist i.s, as is well known, not very exact iu the matter of dates ; and iu the present 
instance his licence is somewhat extravagant. Explaining the source of the afifectations of his 
I^uphuist, Sir Piercie Shafton, he says — " it was about this period that ' the only rare poet of his 
time, the witty, comical, facetiously-quick, and quickly-facetious John Lyly — he that sate at 
Apollo's table, and to whom Phoebus gave a wreath of his own bays without snatching'§ — he, in 
short, who wrote that singularly coxcomical work, called Euphues and his England, — was in the 
very zenith of his absurdity and reputation. The quaint, forced, and unnatural style wdiich he 
introduced by his 'Anatomy of Wit' had a fashion as rapid as it was momentary— all the Court 
ladies were his scholars, and to parler Eiiphuisme was as necessary a qualification to a courtly 
t,'allant, as tho.=io of understanding how to use his rapier, or to dance a measure."|| This statement 
\a nomewhat calculated to mislead the student of our literary history, as to the period of the 
commencement, and of the duration, of Lyly's influence upon the structure of "polite conversation." 
" Euphues,— the Anatomy of Wit," was first published in 1580; and "Euphues and his England" 
in 1581— acme eighteen or twenty years after the time when Sir Piercie Shafton (the English 
Catholic who surrendered himself to the champions of John Knox and the Reformation) explained 
to Mary of Avenel the merits of the Anatomy of Wit— " that all-to-be-unparalleled volume— that 
quint€3.^cnce of human wit— that treasury of quaint invention — that exquisitely-pleasant-to-read, 
und inevitably-necessary-to-be-remembered manual of all that is worthy to be known." H Nor was 
the fashion of Euphuism as momentary as Scott represents it to have been. The prevalence of this 
" spurious and unnatural mode of conversation " *• is alluded to in Jonson's " Every Man out of hia 

, ■ L''!"-?"^ V^m'"' vV '■"'; "■• ''• '"-• ^ Coleridge. Literary Remains, vol. ii., p. 104. 

^ iZ^l, I l^ >f"nastcr}-. 5 Extract from Hlount, the editor of six of Lyly's plays, in 10.32 

I Monastery, ch.ip. x.v. U M mastery, chap. xi7. - Gifford's Ben JonsoV vol. ii.. p. 250. 



Humour," first acted in 1090;— aud it forms ou..' of the chief oljict-i of tho wtiro of nuo B«n'i 
" Cyutbiii's Revels," first acted in 1000. But the most important nuestiuu with refercuco to Sbak- 
spere's employment of tho afiTected phraaeology which ho put* into the mouth of Aniia*lo ia, whether 
this "quaint, forced, and unnatural stylo" wad an imitation of that said to bo introductd hy Lyly if 
indeed, Lyly did more than reduce to a system those innovation.s of language which had obtained 
it cuiTcucy amongst ua for some time previous to the appearance of hia bookn. Rlouut, it i^ true 
says — " our nation are in his debt for a new English which ho taught thorn. KupbucA and hia 
England began first that lauguii:;e." It is somewhat diOQcult precisely to define what "that lan- 
guage" is; but the language of Armado is u>it very diirerent from that of Andrew IJonle, the phy- 
sician, who, according to Heanic, "gave rise to the name of Merry Andrew, the fool of tho mounte- 
bank stage." His "Breviary of Health," first printed in 1547, begins thus: "Egregious doctoura 
and maysters of the eximious and arcbane science of physicko, of your urban itio exajij)crate not 
your selve."* Nor is Armado's langmige far removed from the example of "dark wonls and ink- 
horn terms" exhibited by Wilson, in his "Arte of Rhetoriko" first printed in 1553, where ho givw 
a letter thus devised by a Lincolnshire man for a void benefice : — " Ponder}-ng, cxi)endyng. and 
revolutyng with myself, your ingent affabilitie, and ingenious cjipacitie for mundane affiiirc.t, 1 
cannot but celebrate and extoll your magnificall dexteritie above all other. For how could you 
have adapted suche illustrate prerogative, and domiuicall suj erioritie, if the fecunditie of vour 
ingeuie had not been so fertile anl wonderfull pregnaunt."t In truth, Armado the braggart, and 
Holofemes the pedant, both talk in this vein ; though the schoolmaster may lean more to the hani 
words of Lexiphanism, and the fantastic traveller to the quips and cranks of Euphuism. Our belief 
is, that, although Shaksjiere might have been familiar with Lyly's Euphues when he wr<jte Lore's 
Labour's Lost, he did not, in Armatlo, point at the fashion of the Court "to parley EuphuLsm."! 
The courtiers in this comedy, be ic observed, speak, when they are wearing an artificiiU character, 
something approaching to this language, but not the identical language. They, indeed, " trust to 
speeches penn'd" — they " woo in rhyme" — they employ 

" TaiTata phrases, silken terms precise 
Three-pil'd hyperboles ; " — 

they exhibit a " constant striving after logical precision, and subtle opposition of thoughts, together 

with the making the most of every conception or image, by esprcs.«iug it under the least cxi>cctcd 

property belonging to it." § But of no one of them can it be said, " He speaks not like a man of 

God's making." Ben Jonsou, on the contrary, when, in " Cynthia's Revels," he satirired " the 

special Fountain of M.inners, the Court," expressly makes the courtiers talk tho very jargon of 

Euphuism ; as for example : " You know I call madam Philautia, my Honour ; and she calls me, 

her Ambition. Xow, when I meet her in the presence anon, I will come to her, and say, Sweet 

Honour, I have hitherto contented my sense with the lilies of your hand, but now I will taste tho 

roses of your lips ; and, withal kiss her : to which .she cannot but blushing answer. Nay, now you are 

too ambitious. And then do I reply, I cannot be too ambitious of Honour, sweet lady." But Arma<lo, — 

" A refined traveller of Spain ; 

A man In all the world's new fashion planted, 
That hath a mint of phrases in his brain," — 

is the only man of " fire-new words." The pedant even laughs at him aa a " fanatical phantasm." 
But such a man Shakspere might have seen in his own country-town : whore, unquestionably, tho 
schoolmaster ami the curate might also have flourished. If he had found them in bookn, Wilson's 
"Rhetorike" might as well ha/e supplied the notion of Armado and Holofemes, as Lyly's 
" Euphues " of the one, or Florio's " First Fruita " of tho other. 

Wiu-burton, in his usual " discourse peremptory," tells us, " by Holofemea ia designoil a parti- 
cular character, a pedant and schoolmaster of our author's time, one John Florio, a teacher of the 
Italian tongue in London, who has given us a small Dictionary of that language, under tho title ot 
'A World of Words.'" A\'hat Warburtou asserted Farmer upheld. Florio, says Farmer, h.vl given 
the first affront, by saj-ing, " the plays that they play in England are neither right comedies nor 
right tragedies ; but representations of histories without any decorum." Florio says this in hu 
"Second Fruites," published in 1591. Now, if Shakspere felt himself aggrieved at this sUtenKUt, 

* Quoted in Warton's History of English Poetry, vol. iii., p. 355, 1824. ♦ Ibid., vol. i»., p 160. 

t Blouct. ( Coleridge's Literary Remains, vol. ii-, P- 10*. 


which was true enough of the Englisn drama before his time, he was betrayed by his desire for 
reveuge into very unusual inconsistencies. For, in trutli, the making of a teacher of Italian the 
prototype of a country schoolmaster, who, whilst he lards his phrases with words of Latin, as if he 
were construing with his class, holds to the good old English pronunciation, and abhors " such 
rackers of orthography, as to speak, dout, fine, when he should say, doubt" &c., is such an absurdity 
aa Shakspere, who understood his art, would never have yielded to through any instigation of 
caprice or passion. The probability is, that when Shakspere drew Holofernes, whose name he 
found in Rabelais,' he felt himself under considerable obligations to John Florio for having give'', 
the world " hw ' First Fruitcs ; ' which yeelde familiar speech, merie proverbes, wittie sentences, and 
golden sayings." This book was printed in 1578. But, according to Warburton, Florio, in 1598, 
in the preface to a new edition of his "World of Words," is furious upon Shak.spere in the follow- 
ing passage : " There is another sort of leering curs, that rather snarlc than bite, whereof I could 
instance iu one, who, lighting on a good sonnet of a gentleman's, a friend of mine, that loved better 
to be a poet than to be counted so, calle 1 the author a Rymer. Let Aristophanes and his come- 
dians make plais, and scowre their mouths on Socrates, those very mouths they make to vilifie 
shall be the means to amplifie his virtue." Warburton maintains that the sonnet was Florio's own, 
and that it was parodied in the "extemporal epitaph on the death of the deer," beginning 
"The praiseful princess pierc'd and prick'd a pretty pleasing pricket." 

This is very ingenious argument, but somewhat bold ; and it appears to us that Thomas Wilson was 
just as likely to have suggested the alliteration as John Florio. In the "Arte of Rhetorlke" which 
wo have already quoted, we find this sentence : " Some use over-muche repetition of one letter, as 
pitifull povertie prayeth for a peuie, but puffed presumpcion passeth not a point." Indeed, there 
arc many existing proofs of the excessive prevalence of alliteration in the end of the sixteenth cen- 
tury. Biishop Andrews is notorious for it. Florio seems to have been somewhat of a braggart, for 
he always signs his name " Resolute John Florio." But, according to the testimony of Sir William 
Comwallis, he was far above the character of a fantastical pedant. Speaking of his translation of 
Montaigne (the book which has now acquired such interest by bearing Shakspere's undoubted 
autograph), Sir William Comwallis says, "divers of his (Montaigne's) pieces I have seen trans- 
lated ; they understand both languages say very well done ; and I am able to say (if you will 
take the word of ignorance), translated into a style admitting as few idle words as our language 
will endure." + Holofernes, the pedant, who had " lived long on the alms-basket of words " — who 
had " been at a great feast of languages and stolen the scraps," was not the man to deserve the 
praise of writing " a style admitting as few idle words as our language will endure." 

As far then aa we have been able to trace, the original comedy of Love's Labour's Lost might 
liavc been produced by Shakspere without any personal knowledge of the court language of 
Euphuism, — without any acquaintance with John Florio, — and with a design only to ridicule those 
extravagancies which were opposed to the maxim of Roger Ascham, the most inipedantic of school- 
masters, "to spcdke ns the common people do, to thinke as wise men do.'' J The further intrinsic 
evidence that this comedy was a very early production is most satisfactory. Coleridge has a very 
acute remark — (which in our minds is worth all that has been written about the learning of Shak- 
spere) — a.i to hi* early literary habits. " It is not unimportant to notice how strong a presumption 
the diction and idlusious of this play rfford, that, though Shakspere's acquirements in the dead 
languages might not be such as we suppose in a learned education, his habits had, nevertheless, 
been scholastic, and of a student. For a young author's first work almost always bespeaks 
his recent pursuitH, nnd his first observations of life are either drawn from the immediate employ- 
incnla of his youth, and from the characters and images most deeply impressed on his mind iu the 
Kituationi in which those employments had placed him ; — or else they are fixed on such objects and 
occurrences in the world as are e.-wily connected with, and seem to bear upon, his studies and the 
hitherto cxrlusive subjects of his mcditation.s."§ The frcq\ient rhymes, — the alternate verses, — the 
familiar metre which has been called doggerel (but which Anstey and Moore have made classical 
by wit, and by ftm even more agreeable than wit), lines such as 

" Ili.t face's own margcnt did quote such amazes, 
That all eyes saw liis eyes enchanted with gazes,"— 

• " l)e fnict. Ton luy cnscgna ung grand doctcur sophistc, nomm6 maistre Thubal Holofernc." Gargantua, livre i., chap. xiv. 
f Ess.nyj. IfioO. J Tosophilus. Literar>' Remains, vol. i!., p. 103 



the sonnets fall of quaint conceits, or running off into the moat playful anucrcontics, — the skilful 
management of the pedantry, with a knowkdge far beyond the pedantry, — and the happy employ, 
meut of the ancient mythology, — all justify Coleridge's belief that the materials of this comedy 
were drawn from the immediate eniploymeuta of Shakspero's youth. Still the pluy, when aug- 
mented and corrected, might have received many touches derived from tho power which he hu<l 
acquired by experience. If it were not presumptuous to attempt to put our finger upon such 
passages, we would say that Biron's eloquent speech at the end of the fourth act, beginning 

"Have at you then, alTcction's men at amis,"— 
and Kosaline's amended speech at the end of the play, 

" Ofi have I heard of you, my lord Biron,"— 
must be amongst the more important of these augmentations. 

Period of the Action, and Manners. 
There is no historical foundation for any portion of the action of this comedy. There was no 
Ferdinand King of Navan-e. We have no evidence of a difference between France and Navarre 
as to possessions in AquiUiiu. We may place, therefore, the period of the action oa the period of 
Elizabeth, for the manners are those of Shakspere's own time. The more remarkable of the 
customs which are alluded to will be pointed out in our illustrations. 

Cesare Vecellio, at the eud of his third book (edit 1598), presents us with the general costume 
of Navarre at this period. The women appear to have worn a sort of clog or patten, something like 
the Venetian chioppine ; and wc are told in the text that some dressed iu imitation of the PVench, 
some in the style of the Spaniards, while others blended the fashions of both those nations. The 
well-known costume of Henri Quatre and Philip II. may furnish authority for the dress of the 
kin;,' and nobles of Navarre, and of the lords attending on the Princess of France, who may herself 
be attired after the fashion . f Marguerite de Valois, the sister of Henry III. of Franco, and first 
wife of his successor the King of Navarre. (Vide Montfaucon, Monarchic Fraujalse ) We subjoin 
the Spanish gentleman, and the French lady, of 1589, from Vecellio. For the costume of the 
Muscovites in the mrvsk (.Vet V.), see Illustrations. 

S it^ 



SCENE I.— Navarre. A Park, with a Falace 
in U. 

Enter the King, Bikon,* Longavllle, and 

Ktng. Let fame, that all hunt after in their 
Live register'd upon our brazeu tombs. 
And then grace us in the disgrace of death; 
A^ hen, spite of cormorant devouring time. 
The endeavour of this present breath may buy 
That honour, which shall bate his scythe's keeu 

And make us heirs of all eternity. 
Therefore, brave conquerors !— for so you are. 
That war against your own affections, 
And the huge army of the world's desires,— 
Our late edict shall strongly stand in force : 
Navarre shall be the wonder of the world ; 
Our court shall be a little Academe, 
Still and contemplative in living art. 
You three, Biron, Dumain, and Longaville, 
Have sworn for three years' term to live with me. 
My fellow-scholars, and to keep those statutes. 
That are recorded in this schedule here : 
Your oaths are past, and now subscribe your 
names ; 

tn »o.; \v "^- f ^ •"^^ ^ "ne '» *hich Biron rhymes 
h^a^lTen l^rZl'/ '"'"'""'• *"^P°" '^"'^ pronunciation I 

Comedies.— Vol. I. G 

That his own hand may strike his honour dcwc, 
That violates the smallest branch herein : 
If you are armed to do, as swoni to do, 
Subscribe to your deep oath, and keep it too.' 
Lo/iff. I am resolv'd : 't is but a three years' 
fast : 
The mind shall banquet, though the body pine : 
Fat paunches have lean pates ; and dainty bits 
Make rich the ribs, but baukerout the wits. 

Dum. My loving lord, Dumain is morliCcd. 
The grosser manner of these world's delights 
lie throws upon the gross world's baser slaves : 
To love, to wealth, to pomp, I pine and die ; 
With all these living in philosophy. 

Biron. I can but say their protestation over. 
So much, dear liege, I have already sworn, 
That is, To live and study here three years. 
But there are other strict observances : 
As, not to see a woman in that term ; 
Which. I hope well, is not enrolled there : 
And, one day in a week to touch no food, 
And but one meal on every day beside; 

and the lunrtos. 

» The first folio 
tain it. Mr. T 
in those of 
applied toa ; 
" oalki, and J 

modem alttr ■ ,., »,,^v 

out regard to ilie line a Jittle before, 

" Your oaths arc pass'd, and now lubscribe your name*," 
Src. Addressing the three »ho had sworn, ynwr oaUit is 
correct. But it is not incorrect to call upon them to sub- 
scribe their oaincs to the one oath ithich each had taken. 


read oalht, and stilJ re- 
[)erc'» writings, and 
arc instances of it 

iia: >-jij. 1 lie second folio girci 
too." The line, as we give it, i% a 
h, Mr. Dyce says, was made with- 

Act 1.] 


[Scene I 

Tlie wLicb, I hope, is not ciirollcd there : 

And then to sleep but three hours in the 

And not be seen to wink of all the day ; 
(Wlicn I was wont to think no harm all night, 
And make a dark night too of half the day ;) 
Which, I hope well, is not enrolled there : 
O, tlicse arc barren tasks, too hard to keep ; 
Not to see ladies, — study, — fast, — not sleep. 
King. Your oath is pass'd to pass away from 

Biron. Let nic say no, my liege, an if you 
please ; 
I only swore, to study wilh yoiu* grace. 
And stay here in your coui-t for three years' 
Long. You swore to that, Biron, and to the 

Biron. By yea and nay, sir, then I swore in 
What is the end of study ? let me know. 
King. Why, that to know, which else we 

should not know. 
Biron. Things hid and barr'd, you mean, from 

common sense ? 
King. Ay, that is study's godlike recompense. 
Biron. Come on then, I will swear to study so, 
To know the thing I am forbid to know : 
As thus, — To study where I well may dine, 

When I to feast expressly am forbid ; ■'' 
Or, study where to meet some mistress fine, 

When mistresses from common sense are hid : 
Or, having sworn too hard-a-keeping oalh, 
Study to break it, and not break my troth. 
If study's gain be thus, and this be so, 
Study knows that, which yet it doth not know : 
Swear me to this, and I will ne'er say, no. 
King. These be the stops that hinder study 
And train our intellects to vain delight. 
Biron. "Wliy, all delights are vain ; and that 
most vain, 
Wiiicli, with pain purchas'd, doth inherit pain : 
As, painfully to pore upon a book. 

To seek the light of truth ; while truth the 
Doth falsely blind the eyesight of his loot: 
Light, seeking light, doth light of light be- 
guile : 
So, ere you find where light in darkness lies. 
Your light grows dark by losing of your eyes. 

« Forbid. The old copies read "lo fusl expressly am 
forbid." Theobald lirst supplied /c/ij/. The converse of the 
oath is fast; and iiiik-ss we suppose that Biron was forbid 
in two senses — fir?t. in its usual meaning, and then in its 
ancient mode of m.-iking bid more emphatical, for-bid, — we 
must adopt the change. 

Study mc how to please the eye indeed. 

By fixing it upon a fairer eye ; 
Who dazzling so, that eye shall be his heed. 
And give him light that it was blinded by. 
Study is like the heaven's glorious sun. 

That will not be dcep-search'd with saucy 
looks ; 
Small have continual plodders ever won, 

Save base authority from others' books. 
These earthly godfathers of heaven's lights, 

That give a name to every fixed star. 
Have no more profit of then.- shining nights, 
Than those that walk, and wot not what they 
Too much to know is, to know nought but fame ; 
Ajad every godfather can give a name. 

King. How well he 's read, to reason against 

reading ! 
Bum. Proceeded well, to stop all good pro- 
ceeding ! 
Long. He weeds the corn, and stUl lets grow 

the weeding. 
Biron. The spring is near, when green geese 

are a breediug. 
Bum. How follows that ? 
Biron. Fit in his place and time. 

Bum. In reason nothing. 
Biron. Something then in rhyme. 

King. Biron is like an envious sneapiug frost. 
That bites the first-born infants of the 
Biron. Well say I am ; why should proud 
summer boast, 
Before the birds have any cause to sing ? 
Why should I join in an "^ abortive birth ? 
At Christmas I no more desire a rose. 
Than wish a snow in May's new-fangled shows ; 
But like of each thing that in season grows. 
So you, to study now it is too late, 
Climb o'er the house to uiJoek the little gate,'' 
King. Well, sit you out; go home, Biron; 

adieu ! 
Biron. No, my good lord; I have sworn lo 
stay with you : 
And, though I have for barbarism spoke more. 
Than for that angel knowledge you can say. 
Yet, confident I '11 keep what I have swore. 

And bide the penance of each three years' day^' 
Give nic the paper, let me road the same ; 
And to the strictest decrees I '11 write my name. 

'^ For any Pope gave us an. Mr. Dyce says any was 
cauglit from the preceding line. 

b So the quarto of 1598. The folio has, 

" That were to climb o'er the house t' unlock the gate." 

c It is usual to close the sentence at " three years' day; " 
but the construction requires the rejection of such a pause. 

Act 1] 



King, llow well this jriclding rescues thcc 

from shame ! 
BiroH. \_Read3.'\ 

Item, That no woman shall come within a mile of my 

lourt — 

Ihith this been procluimM ? 
Long. Four drus ago. 
Biron. Let 's sec the penalty. {^Readi!\ 

— On pain of losing her tongue. — 

Who devisM this penalty ? 

Ling. Marry, that ilid I. 

Biron. Sweet lord, and why ? 

Long. To fright them hence with that dread 

Biron. A dangerous law against geutilitv." 


Item, If any man be seen to talk with a woman within 
the term of three years, he shall endure such public shame 
as ihe rest of the court shall possibly devise.— 

Tliis article, my liege, yourself must break ; 

For, ifrell you know, here comes in embassy 
The French king's daughter, \rith yourself to 
speak, — 
A maid of grace, and complete majesty, — 
About surrender-up of Aquitaiu 

To her decrepit, sick, and bedrid father : 
Therefore this article is made in vain. 

Or vainly comes the admired princess hither. 
King. TMiat say you, lords ? why, this was 

quite forgot. 
Biron. So study evermore is overshot. 
While it doth study to have what it would, 
It doth forget to do the thing it sliould : 
.\nd when it hath the thing it huntcth most, 
'Tis won, as towns with lire ; so won, so lost. 
King. Wc must, of force, dispense with this 
decree ; 
She must lie*" here on mere necessity. 

Biron. Necessity will make us all forsworn 
Three thousand times within this three 
years' space : 
For every man with liis affects is bom ; 

Not by might mastcr'd, but by spcciid grace. 
If I break fuitli, this word shall speak' for me, 
I am forsworn on mere necessity. — 
So to the laws at large I write my name : 

And hn that breaks them in the least de- 

» In the early editions this line is Riven to LoHRavillo. It 
acms more properly to belong to Biron, and we therefore 
receive ThcobaM's correction, especially as Uiron is rtailinR 
the paper, and the early copies do not mark this when they 
give the line of comment upon the previous item to 

b Tn lie— to reside. We have the sense in AVotlon's pun- 
ning dt'finition of an ambassador — "an honest niao sent to 
'lie abroad for tlie good of his country." 

« The folio reads brejk. 

O 2 

Suinils ill :ittaindir of eternal shame: 

Suggcsliuus* are to others, us to mc; 
But, I believe, idthough I seem so loth ; 
I am the last that will last keep his oath. 
But is there no quick recreation granted? 
King. Ay, that there is; our court, you know, 
\s haunted 
With a refined traveller < f '^" i ; 
A man in all the world's new i jilantcd, 

That hath a mint of phrases in ids bmin : 
One whom tlic music of his own vain tongue 
Doth ravish, like enchanting hiu-mony ; 
' A man of complements,'' whout right and wrfjng 
Have chose as uini)irc of their mutiny : 
This child of fancy, that Armado hight, 
I For interim to our studies, shall relate, 

In high-born words, the worth of many a knight 
From tawny Spain, lost in the world's dcbate.-' 
How you delight, my lords, I know not, I ; 
But, I protest, I love to hear him lie. 
And I will use him for my minstrelsy. 

Biron. Armado is a most illustrious wight, 
A man of Hre-new* words, fashion's own knight. 
Long. Costard, the swain, and he, shall be our 
sport ; 
And, so to study, three years is but short. 

Enter Dull, with a letter, and Costaud. 

Dull. "Which is the duke's own person ? 

Biron. This, fellow ; "What wouldst ? 

Lull. I myself reprehend his own person, for 
I am his g. ace's tharborough : but I \*ould sec 
his own person in flesh and blood. 

Biron. This is he. 

Dull. Siguior Arme — Arme — commends you. 
There's villainy abroad ; this letter will tell you 

Cost. Sir, the coulcuijils thereof are ;is loueli- 
ing me. 

King. A letter from the magnificent Armado. 

Biron. TIow low soever the matter, I hope iu 
God for high words. 

Long. A high hope for a low heaven : ** God 
grant us patience ! 

Biron. To hear ? or forbear hearing ? ' 

^ Sujgfilions — ions. 

•• Coiiiplenieutt—:i man vcrned in rir< :•. ■r.'nl .I'stirirt'iiris 
— in punctilioi — a man who ! 
mutiny between right and wr 

plement were origin.-illy writtm u. '■ 

thouKb the fir>t may bo taken to ii, 
second ac . -. .. > .1 .. 

tlic same " 

icanting. I .. :.. , '• 

monies; but m Act III., where .M.i ^ com- 

plcmrnn," we have tlie meaning of «. 

' Fire-new and braii-iicw,— that i» biiiiU usw, — new off 
the irons, — have e;ich the same origin. 

* See Illustration, Act I. 

* Capcll proposed to read " Uiigklnj ; " which tome editort 



Act I.] 


[Scene I. 

Long. To hear meekly, sir, and to laugh mo- 
derately ; or to forbear both. 

Biron. Well, sir, be it as the style shall give 
us cause to cUinb in the mcrriness. 

Cost. The matter is to me, sir, as concerning 
Jaquenetta. The manner of it is, I was taken 
with the manner.* 

Biron. In what manner ? 

Cost. In manner and form following, sii'; all 
t hose three : I was seen with her in the manor- 
house, sitting with her upon the form, and taken 
following her into the park ; which, put together, 
is in manner and form following. Now, sir, for 
the manner, — it is the manner of a man to speak 
to a woman : for the form, — in some form. 

liirun. I'^or the following, sir ? 

Cost. As it shall follow in my correction; 
And God defend the riglit ! 

Ki?i(/. Will you hear this letter with attention ? 

Biron. As we would hear an oracle. 

Cost. Such is the simplicity of man to hearken 
after the flesh. 

King. \_lieads^ 

"Great deputy, the welkin's vicegerent, and sole domi- 
iiator of Navarre, my soul's earth's God, and body's foster- 
ing patron, — 

Cost. Not a word of Costard yet. 
" So it is,— 

Cost. It may be so : but if he say it is so, he 
is, in telling true, but so."* 

King. Peace ! 

Cost. — be to me, and every man that dares 
not fight ! 

King. No words ! 

Cost. — of other men's secrets, I beseech you. 


"So it i*, besieged with sable-coloured melancholy, I did 
commend the black-oppressing humour to the most whole- 
some physic of thy health-giving air : and, as I am a gentle- 
ma:!, betook myself to walk. The time when f About the 
sixth hour; when beasts most graze, birds best peck, and 
men sit down to that nourishment which is called supper. 
So much for the time when : Now for the ground which; 
which, I mean, I walked upon : It is ycleped thy park. 
Then for the place where; where, I mean, I did encounter 
that obscene and most preposterous event, that draweth 
from my snow-white pen the ebon-coloured ink, which here 
thou viewcst, beholdcst, surveycst, or seest: liut to the 
place where, — It standcth north-north-east and by east from 
Ihe west comer of thy curious-knotted garden.' There did 
I sec that low-spirited swain, that base minnow of thy 
mirth , 

Cost. Me? 
— '' that unlettci'd small-knowing soul. 

n Mnnner. Costard here talks law-French. A thief wae 
taken with the mainour when he was taken with the thing 
itolen — hond-ktihend, having in the hand. 

I) So-so in modern editions. S) in early copies. 

Cost. Me? 

— "that shallow vassal, 

Cost. Still me ? 
— "which as I remember, liight Costard, 

Cost. me ! 

— " sorted, and consorted, contrary to thy established pro- 
claimed edict and continent canon, with — with, — O with — 
but with this I passion to say wherewith, 

Cost. With a wench. 

— "with a child of our grandmother Eve, a female; or, 
for thy more sweet understanding, a woman. Him I (as 
my ever esteemed duty pricks me on) have sent to thee, to 
receive the meed of punishment, by thy sweet grace's officer, 
Antony Dull; a man of good repute, carriage, bearing, and 

Dtill. Me, an't shall please you 3 I ain Antony 


" For Jaquenetta, (so is the weaker vessel called, which 
I apprehended with the aforesaid swain,) I keep her as a 
vessel of thy law's fury ; and shall, at the least of thy sweet 
notice, bring her to trial. Thine, in all compliments of 
devoted and heart-burning heat of duty, 

Don Adriano de Armado." 

Biron. This is not so well as I looked for, but 
the best that ever I heard. 

King. Ay, the best for the worst. But, sir- 
rah, what say you to this ? 

Cost. Sir, I confess the wench. 

Ki7ig. Did you hear the proclamation ? 

Cost. I do confess much of the hearing it, but 
little of the marking of it. 

King. It was proclaimed a year's imprison- 
ment, to be taken with a wench. 

Cost. I was takcii with none, sir ; I was taken 
with a damosel. 

King. -Well, it was proclaimed damosel. 

Cost. This was no damosel, neither, sir ; she 
was a virgin. 

King. It is so varied too ; for it was pro- 
claimed virgin. 

Cost. If it were, I deny. her vu-ginity; I was 
taken with a maid. 

King. This maid will not serve your tui'n, sii". 

Cost. This mjud will serve my turn, sir. 

King. Sir, I will pronounce your sentence ; 
You shall fast a week with bran and water. 

Cost. I had rather pray a mouth with mutton 
and porridge. 

King. And Don Armado shall be your 
keeper. — 
My lord Eiron, see him deliver'd o'er. — 

Act I] 



And go \vc, lords, to put in practice, that 

Which each toother hath so strongly sworn. — 

[Eirif'it Kino, Loxgavillb, (/ik/ Dumaix. 

BiroH. I '11 lay my head to any good man's liat. 

These oaths and laws will prove an idle 

scorn. — 

Sirrali, come on. 

Cosf. I suffer for the truth, sir : for true it is, 
I was taken with Jaqucnetta, and Jaqucnctta is 
a true girl ; and therefore. Welcome the sour 
cup of prosperity! Afiliction may one day smile 
again, and until then, Sit down, Sorrow ! » 


SCENE l\.— Another part of the same. 
Armado'5 House. 

Enter Armado and Moth. 

Arm. Boy, what sign is it, when a man of 
great spirit grows melancholy ? 

Moth. A great sign, sir, that he will look sad. 

Arm.^ Why, sadness is one and the self-same 
tiling, dear imp. 

Moth. No, no ; lord, sir, no. 

An)*. How canst thou part sadness and melan- 
choly, my tender juvcnal ? 

Moth. By a familiar demonstration of the 
working, my tough senior. 

Arm. ^Miy tough senior ? why tough senior ? 

Moth. Why tender juvenal ? why tender ju- 
vcnal ? 

Arm. I spoke it, tender juvcnal, as a con- 
gruent epitheton, appertaining to thy young 
days, which we may nominate tender. 

Moth. And I, tough senior, as an apper- 
tinent title to your old time, which we may 
name tough. 

Arm. Pretty, and apt. 

Moth. How mean you, sir ; I pretty, and my 
saying apt ? or I apt, and my saying pretty ? 

Arm. Thou pretty, because little. 

Moth. Little pretty, because little : Wliere- 
fore apt ? 

Arm. And therefore apt, because quick. 

Moth. Speak you this in my praise, master ? 

Arm. In thy condign praise. 

Moth. I will praise an eel with the same 

Arm. Wliat ? that an eel is ingenious ? 

Moth. That an eel is quick. 

Arm. I do say, thou art quick in answers : 
Thou heatest my blood. 

a This 13 the readinf; of the first folio, and is adopted by 
Mr. White, instead of tl)e usual reading of " till then, .Sit 
thee down, Sorrow." 

b In the early copies, Artnado U called Braggart through 
the scene, after his first words. 

Moth. I am answered, sir. 

Arm. I lovo not to be crossed. 

Moth. Jle speaks the mere contrary, crosses • 
love not him. {^Aside. 

Arm. I have promised to study three years 
\\itii the diikc. 

Muth. You may do it in an hour, sir. 

Arm. Impossilde. 

^Folh. How many is one thrice told? 

Arm. I am ill at reckoning ; it fits the spirit 
of a tapster. 

Moth. You arc a gentleman, and a gamester, 

Arm. I confess both ; they arc both the var- 
nish of a complete man. 

Moth. Then, I am sure, you know how mneh 
the gross sum of dcuec-ace amounts to. 

Arm. It doth amount to one more than 

Moth. Which the base vulgar call, three. 

Arm. True. 

Moth. Wliy, sir, is this such a piece of study ? 
Now here is three studied, ere you'll thrice 
wink: and how it is to put years to the 
word three, and study three years in two word.s, 
the dancing horse will tell you.^ 

Arm. A most fine figure ! 

Moth. To prove you a cipher. [Aside. 

Arm. I will hereupon confess, I am in love : 
and, as it is base for a soldier to love, so am I 
in love with a base wench. If drawing my 
sword against the humour of affection would 
deliver me from the reprobate thought of it, I 
would take Desire prisoner, and ransom him to 
any French courtier for a new devised courtesy. 
I think scorn to sigh ; mcthiuks, I should out- 
swear Cupid. Comfort me, boy : What great 
men have been in love ? 

Moth. Hercules, master. 

Arm. Most sweet Hercules ! — More autho- 
rity, dear boy, name more ; and, sweet my 
chUd, let them be men of good repute and 

Moth. Sampson, master; he was a man of 
good carriage, great carriage ; for he carried 
the town-gates on his back, like a porter : and 
he was in love. 

Arm. O well-knit Sampson ! strong-jointed 
Sampson ! I do excel thee in my rapier, as 
much as thou me in carrj'ing gates. I anj 
in love too, — AVho was Sampson's love, mv dear 

Moth. A woman, master. 

» Crotiei. A cross if a coin. Nfolh thinlif hU tn.i»icl 
has the poverty a* well a* pride of a Spaniard. 


Act I.] 



Arm. Of what complexion ? 
3Ioth. Of all the four, or the three, or the 
two ; or one of the four. 
Am. Tell me precisely of what complexion ? 
Moth. Of the sea-water green, sir. 
Arm. Is that one of the four complexions ? 
Moth. As I have read, sir; and the best of 
them too. 

Arm. Green, indeed, is tlie colour of lovers; 
but to have a love of that coloiu-, mcthinks, 
Sampson had small reason for it. lie, sui-ely, 
aCfeetcd her for her wit. 
Moth. It was so, sir ; for she had a green wit. 
Arm. My love is most immaculate white and 

Moth. Most maculate* thoughts, master, are 
masked under such colours. 
Arm. Define, define, well-educated infant. 
Moth. My father's wit, and my mother's 
tongue, assist me. 

Arm. Sweet invocation of a child; most 
pretty, and pathetical ! 
Moth. If she be made of white and red. 
Her faults will ne'er be known ; 
Tor blushing cheeks by faults arc bred. 

And fears by pale-white shown : 
Then, if she fear, or be to blame, 

By this you shall not know ; 
Tor still her checks possess the same, 
Which native she doth owe.'' 
/V dangerous rhyme, master, against the reason 
of white and red. 

Arm. Is there not a ballad, boy, of the King 
and the Beggar ? 

2[oth. Tlic world was very guilty of such a 
l)allad some tbree ages since : but, I think, now 
'tis not to be found; or, if it were, it would 
neither scr\'c for the writing, nor the tune. 

Arm. I will Iiavc that subject newly wnt o'er, 
that I may example my digression by some 
mighty precedent. Boy, I do love that country 
girl, that I took in the park ^\^th the rational 
hind Costard; she deserves well. 

Moth. To be wliippcd ; and yet a better love 
t I'.an my master. [_Asidc. 

Arm. Sing, boy ; my spirit grows heavy in 

Moth. And tliat 's great marvel, loving a light 

n So the quirto of 159E. Tlio folio immaculale. To 
maculate is to stain — maculate thoughts are impure 
thouphts. Thus in the Two Noble Kinsmen of Beaumont 
and Fletcher, 

" O vouchsafe 
■With that thy rare prccn eye, whic'a never yet 
Beheld things maculate." 
b Oire — possess. 

Arm. I say, sing. 

Moth. Forbear till this company be past. 

E?itc'r Dull, Costard, and Jaquenetta. 

Dull. Sir, the duke's pleasiu'C is that you 
keep Costard safe : and you must let him take 
no delight, uor no penance ; but a' must fast 
three days a-week. For this damsel, I must 
keep her at the park; she is allowed for the 
day-woman.-'' Fare you well. 

Arm. 1 do betray myself with blushing. — 

Jarj. Man. 

Arm. I win visit thee at the lodge. 

Jaq. That 's hereby.'' 

Arm. I know where it is situate. 

Jaq. Lord, how wise you are ! 

Arm. I will tell thee wonders. 

Jaq. "With that face ?" 

Arm. I love thee. 

Jaq. So I heard you say. 

Arm. And so farewell. 

Jaq. Fair weather after you ! 

Bull. Come, Jaqucuct,ta, away. 

\_Exeunt Dull and Jaqueketta. 

Arm. Villain, thou shalt fast for thy offences 
ere thou be pardoned. 

Cost. Well, sir, I hope, when I do it, I shall, 
do it on a full stomach. 

Arm. Thou shalt be heavily punished. 

Cost. I am more bound to you, than your 
fellows, for they are but lightly rewarded. 

Arm. Take away this villain ; shut him up. 

Moth. Come, you transgressing slave; 

Cost. Let mc not be pent up, sir; I will 
fast, being loose. 

Moth. No, sir ; that were fast and loose : 
thou shalt to prison. 

Cost. Well, if ever I do see the meny days of 
desolation that I have seen, some shall see — 

Moth. What shall some see ? 

Cost. Nay nothing, master Moth, but what 

'<■ Day-woman most probahly means dairy-woman. In 
parts of Scotland the term dnj has been appropriated to 
dairy-maids ; but in Enfjiand, ilcijrs were, pirhaps, the 
lowest class of husbandry servants, pencrally. In a statute 
of Ilichard II., regulating wages, we have "a swineherd, 
a female labourer, and deye," put down at si.\ shillings 
yearly. Chaucer describes the diet of his " poore widow" 
as that of a dey (Nonnos Preestes Tale): — 

" Milk and brown bread, in which she fond no lack, 
Seinde bacon, and sometime an ey or twey; 
For she was, as it were, a mancr dcy." 

*> Jfereltij—a provincial expression for as it may happen. 
Armado takes it as linrd hi/. 

c IVilh ihiilJaceX The folio has " With ivhat face?" The 
phrase of the quarto, " with that face," was a vulgar idio- 
matic expression in the time of Fielding, who says he tooK 
it, " verbatim, from very polite conversation." 

Act I] 


[StSMt: 11. 

tbey look upou. It is not for prisoners to be 
too silent iu their words ; and, therefore, I will 
say nothing: I thank God, 1 have as little pa- 
tience as another man ; ;md, tliereforc, I can be 
n.uiet. {^Exeunt Mom and Costard. 

Arm. I do affect 'the very ground, which is 
base, where her shoe, which is baser, guided by 
her foot, which is basest, doth tread. I shall be 
forsworn, (which is a great argument of false- 
iiood,) if I love : And how can that be true love, 
which is fidsely attempted ? Love is a familiar ; 
love is a devil : there is no evil angel but love. 
Yet Sampson was so temjited; and lie had an 
excellent strength : vet was Solomon so seduced ; 
and he had a very good wit. Cupid's butt- 
shaft is too hard for Hcrcides' clul), and thcre- 

a To affect U to incline towards, and thence, mctaphoric- 
\liy, to love. 

fore too much odds for a Spiuiimd's rapier. The 
first and second cause* will not serve my turn; 
the passado he respects not, the duello he re 
g;u:ds not : his disgrace is to be e;dled boy ; but 
his glory is to subdue men. Adieu, valour ! rust 
rapier ! be still drum ! for your manager is in 
love; yea, he lovcth. .issist me sonie e.\tem- 
poral god of rhyme, for, I am sure, I shall tarn 
sonnet.'' Devise wit ; write pen ; for I am for 
whole volumes in folio. [/:>//. 

» First and second e.iusf. See Illustrationi to Rnmeo And 
Juliet, Act II., Scene IV., pn(;e 43. 

b Sonnet. All the old copies have lonnet. llannicr 
"emended" it into lonn^^irrr which i5 the reetiveJ readiiii;. 
To " turn sonneteer" i.s not in keeping with Annmlo's ntyle 
—as "ailieu valour— rust rapier; " — and afterivur(ls,"de\ise 
wit — write pen." He sa) <, in the »an\e phraseology, he » ill 
" turn honnet ;" as at the present day we Nay, " he can liirti 
ulune." Ben Jonson, it will be renicmhcred, ujieaks o( 
Shakspere's " well-torncd and true-liled line*." 


' Scene I. — "A high hope for a loio heaven." 

Tms is the reading of the early copies; but it 
was chauged by Theobald to havinr/. In our first 
edition we yielded to the universal adoption of 
the change; but we have become satisfied that 
heaven is the true word, and we restore it accord- 
ingly. Mr. Whiter, in his 'Specimen of a Com- 
mentary,' has noticed this passage in connexion 
with his theory of association. The heaven here 
mentioned is the heaven of the ancient stage — the 
covering or internal roof — according to Mr Whiter. 
(See Henry VI. Part I., Illustrations of Act I.) The 
" high words " expected in Armado's letter were 
associated with a " low heaven," as the ranting 
heroes of the early tragedy mouthed their lofty 
language beneath a very humble roof. Without 
adopting Mr. Whiter's theory iu its full extent, we 
may receive the term "low heaven," as we receive 
the term "highest heaven" in Henry V., or the 
" third heaven " of some of the old comedies. 
Biron has somewhat profanely said, " I hope in 
God for high words;" and Longaville reproves 
him by saying " your hope is expressed in strong 
terms for a very paltry gratification — ' A high 
hope for a low heaven.' " 

' Scene I. — "In high-lorn words, the worth of many 
a knight 
From taicny Spain, lost in the world's 

In the variorum editions of Shakspere there is 
a long dissertation by Warburton, to show that the 
romances of chivalry were of Si)auish origin ; and 
an equally long refutation of this ojiinion by Tyr- 
wliitt. Tyrwliitt is, undoubtedly, more correct 
tlian Warljurton ; for, although the romances of 
chivalry took root in Spain, very few were of 
Spanish growth. Shakspere could have known 
nothing of these romances through the sources by 
which they have become familiar to England, — for 
'Don Quixote' was not published till 1G05; but 
' Amadis of Gaul ' (as.serted by Sismondi to be of 
PortugueHe oris^in) was translated in 1592; and 
'Palmcrin of Engl.and ' — which Southey maintains 
to be Portuguese — was tran.slate<l in 1 580. It is pro- 
bable tliat many of the Spanish romances of the 
flixtecnth centurj- were wholly or partially known 
in England wlien Slmksperc wrote Love's Labour's 
Lost; and formed,atleast, a subject of conversation 

atnongst the courtiers and men of letters. He, 
therefore, makes it one of the qualities of Armado 
to recount " in high-born woivls" the exploits of 
the knights of "tawny Spain" — exploits which 
once received their due meed of admiration, but 
which " the world's debate," — the contentions of 
wars and political changes, — have obscured. The 
extravagances of these romances, as told by Ar- 
mado, are pointed at by the king — "I love to 
hear him lie." 

^ Scene I. — " Curious knotted garden." 

We have given, at the end of Act I., a represent- 
ation of "a curious knotted garden," which will 
inform our readers better than any description. 
The beds, or plots, disposed in mathematical sym- 
metry, were the knots. The gardener, in Piiohai-d 
II., comparing England to a neglected garden, says, 

" Her fruit-trees all unprun'd, her hedges ruin'd. 
Her fcnols disorder'd." 

Milton has exhibited the characteristics of this 
formal symmetry by a beautiful contrast : — 
' Flowers, worthy Paradise, which not nice art 
In heels and curious knots, but nature boon 
Pour'd forth." 

4 Scene II.—" The dancing horse zcill fell you." 

Our ancestors were fond of learned quadrupeds. 
"Holden's camel" was distinguished for "inge- 
nious study," as mentioned by John Taylor, the 
water-poet ; there was a superlatively wise ele- 
phant, noticed by Donne and Jonson; — but the 
"dancing horse" — "Banks's horse" — has been 
celebrated bj' Shakspere, and Jonson, and Donne, 
and Hall, and Taylor, and Sir Keuelm Dig by, and 
Sir Walter Ilaleigh. The name of this wonderful 
horse was Morocco. Banks first showed his horse 
in London in 1589 ; where, in addition to his usual 
accomplishments of telling the number of pence in 
a silver coin, and the number of points in throws 
of the dice, he filled the town with wonder by 
going to the top of St. Paul's. The fame of 
Banks's horse led liis master to vi.sit tiie Continent, 
but he was unfortunate in this step. At Orleans 
the horse and the master were brought under 
suspicion of mngic; and, to the utter disgrace of 
papal ignorance and intolerance, poor Banks and 
his "fine cut" were at last put to death at Home ; 
as Jonson quaintly says, 

" Being, beyond the sea, burned for one witch." 

'^^ ^'-M'-^' 

cn '' 


SCENE l.—J,w/l,er pari of the Park. A 
Pavilion and Ten Is at a distance. 

Enter the Prtxcess op France, "Rosalixe, 
Mauia, Katiiari>'E, Botet, Lords, and other 

Boyet. Now, madam, summon up your dear- 
est * spirits ; 
Consider who the king your father sends ; 
To whom lie sends ; and what 's his embassy : 
Yourself, held precious in the world's esteem, 
To parley with the sole inheritor 
Of all perfections that a man may owe. 
Matchless Navarre : the pica of no less weight 
Than Aquitain ; a dowTy for a queen. 
Be now as prodigal of all dear grace, 
As nature was in making graces dear, 
When siie did starve the general world beside, 
And prodigally gave them all to you. 

Prin. Good lord Boyet, my beauty, though 
but mean, 
Needs not the painted flourish of your praise ; 
Beauty is bought by judgment of the eye. 
Not uttcr'd'' by base sale of chapmen's'' tongues : 

» Dearesl — best. 

b To uller is to put forth— as we «ay, " to utter base 
c Chapman was fonnerly a seller — a cheapman, from chrap. 

I am less proud to hear you tell my worth, 

Than you much willing to be counted wisr 

In spending your wit in the praise of mine. 

But now to task the taskcr,— Good Boyet, 

You arc not ignorant, all-telling fame 

Doth noise abroad, Navarre hath made a vow, 

Till painful study shall outwear three years. 

No woman may approach his silent court : 

Therefore to us seemcth it a needful course. 

Before we enter his forbidden gates. 

To know his pleasure ; and in that behalf, 

Bold of your worthiness, we single you 

As our best-moving fair .solicitor : 

Tell him, the daughter of ihc king of France, 

On serious business, craving quick dcspatcli. 

Importunes personal conference with his grace. 

Haste, signify so much ; while wc attend. 

Like humble-visag'd suitors, his high will. 

Boyet. Proud of employment, willingly I go. 


Prill. All pride is wilbng pride, and yours is 
Who are the votaries, my loving lords. 
That are vow-fcllows with tliis virtuous duke ? 

a market; and It l§ itiU uied in this senfe leitallT, as when 
we say, "dLnler and" But It wa* al»o iiicd In- 
diflercntly for nclkr and buyer: the birgainrr on cither ud* 
was a cheapman, chapman, or cnprman. 


Act II. 1 


[SCENF. 1. 

1 Lord. Longaville is one. 

Fiin. Know you tho man ? 

Mar. I know \\\\x\, niadani ; at a marriage 
Between lord Pcrigort and the beauteous heir 
Of Jaqucs Faleonljridge solemnised, 
In Normandy saw I tliis Longaville : 
A man of sovereign parts he is esteem'd ; 
Well fitted in the arts, glorious in arms : 
Nothing beeomes him ill, that he would well. 
The only soil of his fair virtue's gloss, 
(If virtue's gloss will stain witli any soil,) 
Is a sharp wit mateh'd with too blunt a will ; 
Whose edge hath power to cut, whose will still 

[t should none spare that come within his power. 

Frin. Some mcny mocking lord, belike ; is 't 

Mar. They say so most, that most his hu- 
mours know. 

Prhi. Such short-liv'd wits do wither as they 
Who are the rest ? 

Kuth. The young Dumam, a well-accom- 
plish' d youth. 
Of all that virtue love for virtue lov'd :• 
Most power to do most harm, least knowing ill ; 
For he hath wit to make an iU shape good. 
And shape to win grace though he had no wit. 
I saw him at the didce Aleufon's once ; 
iVnd much too little of that good I saw, 
Is my report,* to his great -worthiness. 

lion. Another of these students at that time 
Was there with him : If I have heard a tnifli, 
Biron they call him ; but a merrier man, 
Within the limit of becoming mirth, 
I never spent an hour's talk withal : 
Ilis eye begets occasion for his wit : 
For every object that the one doth catch, 
Tlic other turns (o a mirth-moving jest ; 
AVhich his fair tongue (conceit's expositor) 
Delivers in such apt and gracious words, 
That aged cars play truant at iris talcs, 
And younger hearings are quite ravished ; 
So sweet and voluble is his discourse. 

Prill. God bless my ladies ! are they all in love ; 
That every one lier own hath garnished 
U ith such bcdcckhig ornaments of praise ? 

Mar. Here comes Boyet. 

Re-enter Boyet. 

Trill. Now, what admittance, lord ? 

Boyet. Navarre had notice of your fair ap- 
proach ; 

^ Too little compared to, or in proportion io, liis great 


And he, and his competitors in oath. 

Were all address'd to meet you, gentle lady. 

Before I came. Mai-ry, thus much I have learnt, 

He rather means to lodge you in the field, 

(Like one that comes here to besiege his court,) 

Than seek a dispensation for his oath, 

To let you enter his unpeopled house. 

Here comes Navarre. {The Ladies mask. 

Eater King, Longaville, Dumain, Bieon, and 

Kiiia. Fair princess, welcome to the court of 

Prill. Fair, I give you back again; and, wel- 
come I have not yet : the roof of this court is 
too high to be yours ; aud welcome to the wild 
fields too base to be mine. 

King. You shall be Avelcome, madam, to my 

Prill. I will be welcome then; conduct me 

King. Hear me, dear lady, I have sworn an 

Prill. Oiu- lady help my lord! lie*ll be for- 
King. Not for the world, fair madam, by my 

Prin. Why, will shall break it ; will, and no- 
thing else. 
King. Your ladyship is ignorant what it is. 
Prin. Were my lord so, his ignorance were 
Where now his knowledge must prove ignorance. 
I hear, your grace hath sworn-out house-keeping: 
'T is deadly sin to keep that oath, my lord. 
And sin to break it : 
But pardon me, I am too sudden bold ; 
To teach a teacher ill-besecmcth me. 
Vouchsafe to read the purpose of my coming, 
Aud suddenly resolve me in my suit. 

\_Gices a paper. 

King. JNfadam, I will, if suddenly I may. 

Prill. You will the sooner, that I were away ; 

For you'll prove perjui-'d, if you make me stay. 

Biron. Did not I dance with you in Brabant 

once ? 
Ros. Did not I dance with you in Brabant 

Biron. I know you did. 
Ros. How needless was it then 

To ask the question ! 

Biron. You must not be so quick. 

Ros. 'T is long" of you that spur mc with such 

» Long of ly""— along of you— through you. 

Act U.] 


IScKse i. 

JSiicn. Your wit 's too hot, it speeds too fast, 
'twill tire. 

Tit*. Not till it leave the rider in the mire. 

Biron. "Wliat time o' day? 

Jios. The hour that fools should ask. 

Siro/i. Now fair befall your mask ! " 

Jios. Pair fall the face it covers ! 

Biroii. Aud send you many lovers ! 

Ros. Amen, so you be none. 

Biroii. Nay, then will I be gone. 

Kiiifj. !Madani, your father here doth iutin\atc 
The payment of a hundred thousand crowns ; 
Bein? but the one half of an entire sum, 
Disbursed by my father in his wars. 
But say, that he, or we, (as neither have,) 
Rcceiv'd that sura ; yet there remains unpaid 
A hundred thousand more; in surety of the 

One part of Aquitain is bound to us, 
Although not valued to the money's worth. 
If then the king your father will restore 
Hut that one half which is unsatisCed, 
We M-ill give up our right in Aquitaiu, 
And I'old fair fricndsliip with his majesty. 
But that, it seems, he little purposeth, 
For here he doth demand to have repaid 
An hundred thousand crowns ; and not demands, 
On payment of a hundred thousand crowns, 
To have his title live in Aquitain ; '' 
■\Vhich we much rather had depart withal. 
And have the money by our father lent, 
Than Aquitain so gelded as it is. 
Dear princess, were not his requests so far 
From reason's yielding, your fair self should 

A yielding, 'gainst some reason, in my breast, 
And go well satisfied to France again. 

Prill. You do the king my father too nnieh 
And wrong the reputation of your name, 
In so unsccming to confess receipt 
Of that which hath so failhfidly been paid. 

Kiiir/. I do protest, I never heard of it ; 
And, if you prove it, I '11 repay it back. 
Or yield up Aquitain. 

Prill. ^\ e arrest your word : — 

Boyet, you can produce acquittances. 
For such a sum, from special officers 
Of Charles his father. 

••» The ladies were masked, and, perhaps, were dressed 
alike. Biron. suhsequently, after an exchange of wit with 
Rosaline, inqu-r» who Katharine is: and Dumain, in the 
same manntr, asks Boyet as to Uosalinc. 

b He requires the rc-paj-mcnt of a liundred thousand 
rrowns,— but does not propose to pay us the other hundred 
thousand crowns, by which payment he would redeem the 

King. Satisfy me so. 

Boi/el. So please your grace, the packet is 
not come, 
Where that and other specialties arc bound; 
To-morrow you shall have a sight of them. 
King. It shall suflicc mc : at which inter- 
All liberal reason I will yield unto. 
Meantime, receive such welcome at my hand 
As honour, without breach of honour, may 
Make tinder of to thy true worthiiuss : 
Y'ou may not come, fair princess, in my gates ; 
But here without you shall be so rcceiv'd, 
As you shall deem yourself lodg'd in my 

Though so denied fair harbour in my house. 
Your own good thoughts excuse me, and fare- 

To-morrow we shall visit you agjiin. 

Prill. Sweet health and fair desires consort 

your grace ! 
King. Thy own wish wish I thee in every 
place ! [^Exeunt King and his trai.i- 
Biron. Lady, I will commend you to my own 

Bus. 'Pray you, do my commendations; I 

would be glad to see it. 
Biron. I would, you heard it groan. 
Bos. Is the fool sick ? 
Biron. Sick at the heart. 
Bos. Alack, let it blood. 
Biron. "Would that do it good ? 
Bos. My physic says, I. 
Biron. Will you prick 't with your eye? 
Bos. No poi/iil," with my knife. 
Biron. Now, God save thy life ! 
llos. And yours from long living ! 
Biron. I cannot stay thanksgivhig. {lii-liriih/. 
Dam. Sir, I pray you a word : AVhat lady is 

that same ? 
Buyd. The heir of Alen^on, Rosaline her 

num. A gallant lady! Monsieur, fare you 
well. ' [^>'/- 

Long. I beseech you a word ; What is --l- Ir 

the white ? 
Bogel. A woman sometimes, if you saw her in 

the light. 
Long. Perchance, light in the li^ht : I desire 

her name. 
Boget. She hath but one for herself ; lo desire 

that, were a shame. 
Long. Pray you, sir, whose daughter? 

a So pntjnl—\\\e double negative, as it is commonly cmlled. 
of the French— Bon point. 


Act II. 1 


[Sl'EN'E I 

Boyet. Her mother's, I have heard. 
Long. God's blessing on your beard ! 
Borjet. Good sir, be not ofTended : 
She is an heu- of Falconbridge. 

Long. Nay, my choler is ended. 
She is a most sweet hidy. 
Boyet. Not unlike, sii- ; that may be. 

{Exit Long. 
Biron. What 's her name, in the cap ? 
Boyet. Katharine, by good hap. 
Biron. Is she wedded, or no ? 
Boyet. To her will, sir, or so. 
Biron. You are welcome, sir ; adieu ! 
Boyet. Farewell to me, sir, and welcome to 

you. \ExH Biron. — Ladies unmash. 
Mar. That last is Biron, the merry mad-cap 

lord ; 
Not a word with him but a jest. 

Boyet. And every jest but a word. 

Prin. It was well done of you to take him at 

his word. 
Boyet. I was as willing to grapple, as he was 

to board. 
Mar. Two hot sheeps, marry ! 
Boyet. And wherefore not ships ? 

No sheep, sweet lamb, unless we feed on your 

^[ar. You sheep, and I pasture ; Shall that 

finish the jest ? 
Boyet. So you grant pastui'e for mc. 

[Offer i)ig to kiss her. 
Mar. Not so, gentle beast ; 

>ry lips are no common, though several they be.* 
Boyet. Belonging to whom ? 
Mar. To my fortunes and mc. 

Prin. Good wits will be jangling : but, gen- 
tles, agree : 

» Common — teveral. Sliakspere here uses liis favourite !aw- 
phrasc.i,— which practice has given rise to tlicbelief that he 
was bred in an attorney's oflice. But there is here, appa- 
rently, some confusion in tlie use, — occasioned by the word 
Ihoiigli. A "common " as we all know, is unapportioned 
land ;— a "jcrer«/," land that is private property. Shakspere 
uses the word according to this sense in the Sonnets : — 

" Why ^hnuld my heart think that a several plot, 

Which my heart knows the world's wide common place? " 
fint Dr. Jamei has attempted to show that tercral, or tcve- 
rell. ill WarwickHhir.-, meant the common fuld ;— common 
to a few proprietors, but not common to all. In this way, 
the word " thouu'h " is not contradictory. Maria's lips are 
" no common, though several" — 

" Belonging to whom ? 

To my fortunes and me." — 
I and my fortunc-i arc the co-proprietors of the common 
ncld,— but we will not "grant pasture" to others. Pro- 
vincial usages arc important in the illustration of Shakspere 

This civil war of wits were much better us'd 
On Navarre and his book-men ; for here 't is 
Boyet. If my observation, (which very seldom 
By the heart's still rhetoric, disclosed with eyes, 
Deceive me not now, Navarre is infected. 
Prin. With what ? 
Boyet. With that which we lovers entitle, 

Prin. Your reason. 

Boyet. Why, all his behavioui'S did make 
their retire 
To the court of his eye, peeping thorough desu'c : 
His heart, like an agate, with your print im- 
Proud with his form, in his eye pride expressed : 
His tongue, all impatient to speak and not see. 
Did stumble with haste in his eyesight to be ; 
All senses to that sense did make their repaii". 
To feel only"' looking on fairest of fair : 
Methought all his senses were lock'd in his eye. 
As jewels in crystal for some prince to buy; 
TlHio, tend'ring their own worth, from whence 

they were glass'd. 
Did point out to buy them, along as you pass'd. 
His face's own margent did quote such amazes, 
That all eyes saw his eyes enchanted with gazes : 
I '11 give you Aquitain, and all that is his, 
An you give him for my sake but one loving 
Prin. Come, to our pavilion : Boyet is dis- 

pos'd — 
Boyet. But to speak that in words, which his 
eye hath disclos'd : 
I only have made a mouth of his eye, 
By adding a tongue which I know will not lie. 
Bos. Thou art an old love-monger, and speak'st 

Mar. He is Cupid's grandfather, and learns 

news of him. 
Bos. Then was Venus like her mother; for 

her father is but grim. 
Boyet. Do you hear, my mad wenches ? 
3Iar. No. 

Boyet. What, then, do you see ? 

Bos. Ay, our way to be gone. 
Boyet. You are too hard for me. 


a Tofeflonli/. Thus the ancient copies. Jackson sue- 
gests " To feed on by." 


•il. »i*HMi' ' 





SCENE I.— Another part of the Park. 
Enter Armado and Moth. 

Arm. "Warble, child; make passionate my 
sense of hearing. 

Moth. Concolinel^ • [Singinr/. 

Arm. Sweet air ! Go, tenderness of years ! 
take this key, give enlargement to the swain, 
bruig him fcstinately nither; 1 must employ 
liim in a letter to my love. 

Moth. INLister, will you win your love with 
a Freneh brawl ? * 

Arm. How meanest thou ? brawling in French ? 

Moth. No, my complete master: but to jig 
off a tunc at the tongue's end, canary^ to it with 
your feet, humour it with turning up your eye- 
lids; sigh a note, and smg a note; sometime 
through the throat, as if you swallowed love 
with singing love ; sometime througn the nosC; 
as if you snuffed up love by smelling love ; with 
your hat, penthouse-like, o'er the shop of your 
eyes ; ■• with your arms crossed on your thin-belly • 
doublet, like a rabbit on a spit; or your hands 
m your pocket, like a man after the old painting ; 
and keep not too long in one tune, but a snip 

> The folio ha? Ihinbellg, as a compound wo:d. The 
quarto, thin belly's. 

and away : These are complements," these are 
humours ; these betray nice wenches, that would 
be betrayed without these ; and make them men 
of note, (do you note, men ?) that most arc 
affected to these. 

Arm. How hast thou purchased this experi- 

Moth. By my penny of observation. 

Arm. But 0,— but 0— 

Moth. — the hobby-horse is forgot.* 

Arm. Callcst thou my love, hobby-horse ? 

Moth. Ko, master ; the hobby-horse is but a 
colt, and your love, perhaps, a hackney. But 
have vou forgot your love ? 

Ari.i. ^Vlmost I had. 

Moth. Negligent student ! learn her by heart. 

Arm. By heart, and in heart, boy. 

Moth. And out of heart, master: all those 
three I will prove. 

Arm. "What wilt thou prove ? 

Moth. A man, if I live ; and this, by, in, and 
without, upon the instant : By heart you love 
her, because your heart cannot come by her : 
in heart you love her, because your heart is in 
love with lier : and out of heart you love her, 
beinir out of heart that you cannot enjoy her. 

» See Note 10 Act I., Scene I. 


Act III.] 


[Scene I 

Arm. I am all these three. 

Moth. And three times as much more, und yet 
uothing at all. 

jJrm. Fetch hither the swaiu ; he must carry 
me a letter. 

Moth. A message well sympathised ; a horse 
to be ambassador for an ass ! 

Arm. Ila, ha ! M'hat sayest thou ? 

Molh. Marry, sir, you must send the ass upon 
the horse, for he is very slow-gaited : But I go. 

Arm. The way is but short ; away. 

Moth. As swift as lead, sir. 

Arm. Thy meaning, pretty ingenious ? 
Is not lead a metal heavy, dull, and slow ? 

Mot/i. Minimi, honest master ; or rather, 
master, no. 

Arm. Lsay, lead is slow. 

Molh. You arc too swift, su', to say so. 

Is that lead slow which is fired from a gun ? 

Arm. Sweet smoke of rhetoric ! 
I Ic reputes me a cannon ; and the bullet, that 's 

I shoot thee at the swain. 

Moth. Thump then, and I flee. 


Arm. A most acute javenal; voluble and 
free of grace ! 
Uy thy favoiu:, sweet welkui, I must sigh in thy 

face : 
.Most rude melancholy, valour gives thee place. 
My herald is returned. 

He-enter MoTii and CoSTAOin. 

Moth. A wonder, master ; here 's a Costard 
i>rokcn in a shui." 

Arm. Some enigma, some riddle : come, — 
thy Vcncojf ; — begin. 

Cost. No cgma, no riddle, no V envoy ; ^no 
salve in them all,'' sir : 0, sir, plantain, a plain 
plantain ; no V envoy, no V envoy, no salve, sir, 
but a plantain ! ■= 

Arm. By virtue, thou cnforeest laughter ; thy 
silly though!, my spleen ; the heaving of my 
lungs provokes mc to ridiculous smiling : 0, 
pardon me, my stars ! Doth the inconsiderate 
take salve for I'envry, and the word Ventoy for 
a salve ? 

■» CoslarrI in a shin. — Custard is the lirnd. 

>> So inlre in Ihmi nil. The common rc.idinn is " no 
ialvc in the mail," which is that of the old copies. Wc 
adopt Tyrwiiiti's sus;;,'ostion. 

' When Moth quibblrs about Costard and his shin, Ar- 
mado supposes there is .i riildlc— and lie calls for the I'ctnn;/ 
— the a'ldrcss of the old French poets, which conveyed 
their moral or explanation. Costard says, he wants no 
such things— there is no salve in them sdl : he wants a 
plantain for his wound. 


Moth. Do the wise think them oilier ? is not 
V envoy a salve ? -"^ 

Arm. No, page : it is an epilogue or discourse, 
to make plain 
Some obscure precedence that hath tofore been 

I win example it : 

The fox, the ape, and the humble-be;.', 
Were still at odds, being but three. 
There 's the moral ; Now the P envoy. 

Molh. I will add the Vcuvo]) ; say the moral 


Arm. The fox, the ape, and the humble-bee. 

Were still at odds, being but three. 
Moth. Until the Toose came out of door, 
And stay'd the odds by adding four. 
Now will I begin youi- moral, and do you follow 
with my I'envoy. 

The fox, the ape, and the humble-bee, 
Were still at odds, being but three : 
Arm. Until the goose came out of door. 

Staying the odds by adding foiu-.'' 
Moth. A good Vemoy, ending in the goose ; 
Would you desire more ? 

Cost. The boy hath sold him a bargain,^ a 
goose, that 's flat : — 
Sir, your pennyworth is good, an your goose 

be fat. — 
To sell a bargain well, is as cunning as fast and 

loose : 
Let me see a fat V envoy ; ay, that 's a fat 
Arm. Come hither, come hither : How did 

this argiuncnt begin ? 
Moth. By saying that a Costard was broken 
in a shin. 
Then call'd you for the V envoy. 

Cost. Trae, and I for a plantain : Thus came 
your argument in ; 
Then the boy's fat I'envoy, the goose that you 

And ho ciulcd the market. 

Arm. But tell me ; how was there a Costard 
broken in a shin ? 

Moth. I will tell you sensibly. 
Cost. Thou hast no feeling of it, Moth ; I 
will speak that V envoy. 

a But the arch page makes a joke out of Costard's blunder, 
and asks is not I'cindi/ a salve? He has read of the Salve! 
of the Jtomans, and has a pun for the eye ready. Dr. Farmer 
believes that Shakspere had here forgot liis sniill Latin, and 
tliouKht that the words bad the same pronunciation. Poor 
Shakspere 1 Wliat a dull dog he must have been at this 
Latin, according to the no-learning critics. 

l> So the quarto of 1599. But the folio makes Armado 
merely give the moral, and Moth the I'envoy, without these 
repetitions. The sport which so delights Costard is lost by 
the omission. (See Illustration.) 




I, Costard, running out, that was safely within, 
I'ell over the thrcsliold, and broke my shin. 

Jrni. Wc will talk no more of this matter. 

Cost. Till there be more matter in tiic 

Jrm. !Marry, Costard, I will cnfranehise thee. 

Cost. 0, marry me to one Frances; — I smell 
some fencoy, some goose iu this. 

Arm. By my sweet soul, I mean, setting thee 
at liberty, eiifrccdoming thy person ; thou wert 
unmured, rcstraiucd, eaptivatcd, bound. 

Cost. True, true ; and now you will be my 
purgation, and let me loose. 

Arm. I give thee thy liberty, set thee from 
durance ; and, in lieu thereof, impose on thee 
nothing but this : Bear this signiQeant to the 
country maid Jaquenetta : there is remuneration; 
[fficififf him ntjitei/] for the best wiu-d of mine 
honour is rewai'ding my dependents. Moth, 
follow. \_Exit- 

Moth. Like the sequel, I. — Signor Costard, 

Cost. My sweet ounce of man's flesh ! my 
incony* Jew ! [Exit Moth. 

Now will I look to his remuneration. Remune- 
ration! 0, that's the Latm word for three 
farthiugs : three farthings — remuneration. — 
What 's the price of this inkle ? a penny : — No, 
I'll give you a remuneration: why, it carries it. 
— Remuneration ! — why, it is a fairer name than 
French crown. I will never buy and sell out of 
this word. 

Enter Biron. 

Biron. 0, my good knave Costard ! exceed- 
ingly well met. 

Cost. Pray you, sir, how much carnation 
ribbon may a man buy for a remuneration ? 

Biron. What is a remuneration ? 

Cost. Marry, sir, halfpenny farthing. 

Biron. O, why then, threc-farthings-wortli of 

Cost. I thaidi your worship : God be with 

Biron. 0, stay, slave ; I must employ thee : 
As thou wilt win my favour, good my knave, 
Do one thing for me that I shall entreat. 

Cost. AV'heu would you have it done, sir ? 

Biroi. 0, tliis afternoon. 

Cost. Well, 1 will do it, sii- : Fai-e you well. 

Biron. 0, thou knowcst not what it is. 

Cost. I shall know, sir, when I have done it. 

a Incnny Jew.—lncony is thougM to be the same as the 
Scotch canny — which is our knnwiny — cunning. Jew is, 
perhaps, Costard's superlative notion of a clever fellow. 

Biroii. Why, villain, thou must know first. 

Cost. I will come to your worship to-morrow 

Biron. It must be done this afternoon. Hark 
slave, it is but this ; — 
The princess comes to hunt here in the park. 
And in her train there is a gentle lady ; 
When tongues speak sweetly, then they namo 

her name, 
And Uosuline they call her : ask for her ; 
And to her white hand see thou do eoinmcnd 
This seal'd-np counsel. There 's thy guerdon ; 
go." [dices him money . 

Cost. Gardon, — sweet garden ! better than 
remuneration; eleven-pence farthing belter 
Most sweet gardon ! — I will do it, sir, in print. — 
Gardon — renumcrat ion. [Exit. 

Biron. 0! — And I, forsooth, in love! T, that 
have been love's whip ; 
A very beadle to a humorous sigh ; 
A critic ; nay, a night-watch constable ; 
A domineering pedant o'er the boy. 
Than whom no mortal so magnificent ! 
This wimpled,'* whining, purblind, wayward 

This senior-junior, giant -dwarf, Dan Cupid : 
Regent of love-rhymes, lord of folded arms, 
The anointed sovereign of sighs and groans, 
Liege of all loiterers and malcontents. 
Dread prince of plackets, king of codpieces, 
Sole imperator, and great general 
Of trotting paritors,^ my little heart !— 
And I to be a corporal of his field, »* 
And wear his colours like a tumbler's hoop !» 
What ? I love ! I sue ! I seek a wife ! 
A woman, that is like a German clock,"' 
Still a repairing ; ever out of frame ; 
And never going aright, being a watch. 
But being watch'd that it may still go right ? 
Nay, to be perjur'd, which is worst of all ; 
And, among three, to love the worst of all ; 
A wliitcly wanton with a velvet brow, 
With two pitch balls stuck m her face for eyes ; 
Ay, and, by heaven, one that will do the deed, 
Though Argus were her eunuch and her guard ! 

a We deviate, for once, from a resolution not to (Jwcll 
uiion the commendation, or dispraise, of onr labours by 
other editors, for the purpose of expressing our gratclul 
senseof this note by Mr. White:— 

"In the original liiron is represented as giving Itiis 
French name for remuneration crrectly, and the clown as 
mispronouncing it.-a trilling- but char.-,cteristic distinction 
ne- ected bv :ill editors hith<.rto, except Mr. KniKht--t»tn 
by'thc careful Capell. It would not be worthy of par- 
ticular mention, except to remind the rc-ader '''=''"■""= 
many hundreds of like resl'^rations of the origin.^ text 
Usfde fZ. those of more importance), which ate mlently 
made for the first time in this edition. 

b Himp/crf— veiled. 

Act III.] 

And I to sigh for her ! to watch for her ! 
To pray for her ? Go to ; it is a plague 
Tliat Cupid will impose for my neglect 
Of his almighty dreadful little might. 

Well, I 

[SCilNE I. 

will love, write, sigh, pray, sue, aud 
groan ; 
Some men must love my lady, and some Joan. 



Sf. I. p. 93. — "By my penny of observation," 
" By my pain of observation." — Collier. 

Pain is explained as " the pains lie [Moth] had taken in 
observing the characters of men and women." The con- 
nexion between "purchased" and "penny" need hardly 
be shown. Certainly the Corrector had tal^en no paim in 
observing Moth's character when he made this bald attempt 
to turn wit into common-place. 

Sc. I. p. 95. — "5'jrra/i, Costard, 1 will enfranchise thee." 

"Sirrah, Costard, murri/, I will enfranchise thee." — Collier. 

The word marry is certainly required ; and we have taken 
the liberty not to follow Mr. Collier by its insertion after 
Costard, but to substitute it for the " Sirrah" of the ori(;inal. 

Sc. I. p, 95.— " A whilcly wanton witli a velvet brow." 
"A willy wanton with a velvet brow." — Collier. 

We agree with Mr. Dyce that whitcly (in the old editions 
whillcy) "is a questionable reading, Rosaline being, as we 
learn from several places of the play, dark-comple.xioned." 


1 Scene l.—"ConcoUnel." 

This wiistloubtless the burthen of some teniler air, 
thatwould "make passionate the sense of hearing." 
Steevens has shown that, when songs were intro- 
duced in the old comedies, the author was, in many 
cases, content to leave the selection of the song to 
the player or to the musicians, indicating the place 
of itd introduction by a sfcigo direction. 

' Scene I.—" .1 Froich braid." 

The Elizabethan gallants must have required very 
serious exercises in the academy of dancing, to win 
their loves. The very names of the dances are 
enough to astound those for whom the mysteries of 
the quadrille are sufficiently diflScult: "Coratitoes, 
lavoltos, jigs, measures, pavins, brawls, galliards, 
canaries." (Brome's ' City Wit.') The name of 
the brawl is derived from the French braiile, a 
shaking or swinging motion; and with this dance, 
which was performed bj- pei"sous uniting hands in 
a circle, balls were usually opened. The opening 
waa calculated to put the parties considerably at 
their ease, if the hranlc be correctly described in 
a little book of dialogues printed at Antwerp, 
1579 : "Un des gentilhommes efc une des dames, 

estans lea premiere en la danse, laisflcnt les autres 
(qui cependant continuent la danse), et, so mettans 
dedans la dicte compagnie, vont baisans jwr oi-dre 
toutes les personnes qui y sont : h sijavoir, le gentil- 
homrae les dames, et la dame les gentilshommes. 
Puis, ayant achevd leurs baisemens, au lieu qu'ils 
cstoyent les premiers en la danse, se mettent lea 
derniers. E', ceste fa9on de faire se continue 
par le gentilhomme et la dame qui .sont les plus 
prochains, jusipiesJice qu'on vienne aux dernier.s." 
We are obliged to Douce for this information ;but 
we have often looked upon the fine old seat of the 
Hatton family at Stoke, the scene of Gray's " lon'» 
story, " and marvelled at its 

" Rich windows that exclude the light, 
And passages that lead to nothing," 

without being aware that the "grave Lord Keeper" 
had such arduous duties to perform : — 

"Full oft within the spacious walls, 

When he had fifty winters o'er him, 
My grave Lord-Keeper led the brawls ; 

The seal and maces danc'd before him. 
His bushy beard, and shoe-strin^-s green, 

His high-crown'd hat, and satin doublet, 
Mov'd the stout heart of England's queen. 

Though Pope and Spaniard could not trouble it." 

Co-MEDiEs.— Vol. I. II 


With regard to the musical character of the hrawl 
or hranle (anciently Iransle), it is described by De 
Castilhon as a gay, i-ound dance, the air is short, and 
tn rondeau, i.e. ending at each repetition with the 
first part. Mersenne {Havmonie Universelle, 1636) 

enumerates and describes seyeral kinds of hranle 
and gives examples, in notes, of each. In the Or- 
chesograpliie of Thoiuot Ai-beau (1588) is the an- 
nexed specimen of this dance : — 

3 Scene I.—" Canary to it." 

Canary, or canaries, an old lively dance. SirJohn 

Hawkins i.s quite mistaken in supposing this to be 

of English invention; it most probably originated in 

Spain, though, from the name, many have attributed 

its origin to the Canary Islands, instead of conclud- 
ing, what is most likely, that it was there impoi-ted 
from the civilized mother-country. Thoinot Arbeau 
and Mersenne both give the tune, but in different 
forms. That of the latter is thus noted : — 


Purcell, in his opera, Dloclesian, (1691,) intro- 
fluces a canaries, which, as well as the above from 
^lersenne, seems modelled after that published by 
Arbeau. Purcell's is set for four bowed instruments, 

accompanied,most probably, by hautboys; and as the 
work in which it appears is very rare, and the tune 
but little if at all known, we here in.sert an adapta- 
tion of it, which retains all the notes in the original : 

i-^i [j^i rfi- -j^-i rs 

/-1 — ^ 





/-kit I J J d:^-^- I ^ I i *1 i I.J-«'- ^*^"' • "^ I I 

* Scene I. — " With your hat, pcnthome-likc." 
In the extremely clever engraved title-page to 
Burton's "Anatomj- of Melancholy," the inamorato, 
who wear.=i " his hat peut-houae like o'er the shop of 

his eyes," is represented as an example of love me- 
lancholy. We have given the figure at the end of 
Act III., as an impersonation of Moth's description ; 
which may also refer to Biron's new vocation. 


» Scene I.—" The hohby-horat tsfof-jot." 

The hobbj'horses which people riJe in the present 
day are geaorally very quiet auiiuals, which ^ivt? 
little offence to public opinion. But the hobby- 
horse to which Sh.iksperehere alludes, and to which 

he ha? alluded also in Hiunl ' m animal con- 

sidere-l i V tlK- Puritans sou that thev ex- 

■ May- 
illd It IS Uloat pt ■ r 

.- A an individual ci. a 

small piece of folly which he ia unwilling to give up, 
it is called his hobby-horse. The hobby-horse was 
turned out of the May->rames with Fri;vr Tuck and 
Maid Marian, as .-^ i ' ' f poperj-; 

and some Wiig wr ribed by 

Hamlet, — 

'• For, O, for, O, ihe hobby-horse is forgot." 
The hobby-horse of the May-games required a per- 

erted all t' 
games. 1 
wonderful pe: ■ 
this re.%si>n th 

son of considenble eki" 
his body was only of w 
neck of I ' ' ' 
' Every V. 
danced in Uim ; — 

" SogliarJ >. — Nay.' -^^ • ■ 
In the country hu t 
I have; I have the ii;ru; ^j i 
and all, the 

Carlo. — now • 

S09.— Ay. tl 





i:ir».aaiii^ ui 


for that, and the 

'hlehhle, and 

■ 'm 

Strutt, in his antiquarian romance of * Quecnhi > 
n;Ul,' h-a-s deacrib ' ' ' • :rtli the cp ' "f tho 
hobby-horse and uandFi whic-Ji, 

' " " U5 wcU understood from the fol- 

* SCBNE I. — " The boy hath $oid him a bargain." 

This comedy is running over with allusions to 
cotintry spirU — one of the many proof* that in its 
original shape it may be a- ' - 

greenert years. Thf^p^r+w 1 

about the ;• • • j 

explaine<l ' _ ' 

eommentj up' '• and 

sneered at by •.... ... ; —.. ^..u.: . . i„ ::. is in- 
stance they take do notice of him. It seems, acconl- 

H 2 

ing to CapcU, that " selling a bargain" coiiHixti-d in 

drawing a person in by some strntagcm • ;ii 

himself fool by hw own lips ; and thun, v. ..■ ;■ .'.;., ih 

m.akes his niaxtor repeat the Venroy ending in the 

gOO.-'\ : ' ' ' 'fa goo 

the I ■ .nl cnllM 

gain wtU." 


the market aiiudca to the proverb ' 

Tv:\\ .1 r' ...Hc make a market." 



three women 



7 Scene I.—" Of trotting xaritors." 

The i^aritor, apparitor, is the officer of the 
Ecclesiaatical Court who carries out citations — 
often, in old times, against offenders who were 
prompted by the 

" Liege of allloitercrs." 

* Scene J.— "And I to be a corporal of his field." 

A corporal of tie field was an officer in some 
degree resembling our aide-de-camp, according to 
a passage in Lord Strafford's Letters, liut, accord- 
ing to Styward'a ' Pathway of Martial Discipline,' 

1581, of four corporals of the field, two had charge 
of the shot, and two of the pikes and bills, 

3 Scene I. — "And wear 7ns colours like a tumbler's 

The tumbler was a great itinerant performer in 
the days of Shakspere, as he is still. His hoop, 
which was a necessary accompaniment of his feats, 
was adorned with ribands. Strutt, in his ' Sports,' 
has given us some representations of the antics 
which these ancient promoters of mirth exhibited ; 
and they differ very slightly from those which still 
delight the multitude at country fairs. 

• .SuT I 

Scene I. — " Like a German clock." 

The Germans were the great clock-makers of the 
sixteenth century. The clock at Hampton Court, 
which, according to the inscription, was set up in 
l.'JiO, is said to be the first ever made in England. 
Sir Samuel Meyrick po.sse3.S((l a table-clock of Ger- 
man manufacture, the representations of costume 
on which show it to be of the time of I'llizabetli. It 
ha.s a double set of hours, namely, from one to twenty- 

four, v.-hich was probably peculiar to the clocks of 
this period, as we may gather from Othello : — 

" He '11 watch the horologe a double set.' 

It is most probable that the German clock, 

" Still a repairing ; ever out of fraraej 
And never going aright," 

was of the common kind which we now call Dutch 





• V 


:^^^:..: J^ -^ 





SCENE l.—Anolher part of the Park: 

Enter the Tkixcess, Hosalixe, Maru, Ka- 
tharine, BoYET, Lords, Attcndauts, and a 

Vrin. Was that the king, that spurr'd Lis 
horse so hard 
Against tho steep uprising of the iiill ? 

Bojjet. I know not ; but, I tiiiuk, it was not 

Vrin. ^Vhoc'cr lie was, he sliow'd a mount- 
ing mind. 
Well, lords, to-day we shall have our despatch ; 
On Saturday we will return to France. — 
Then, forester, my friend, where is tlie bush. 
That wc must stand and play the murderer in ? ' 
For. Here by, upon the edge of yonder cop- 
k stand, where you may make the fairest shoot. 
Fria. I thank my beauty, I am fair that 
And thereupon thou speak'st, the fairest shoot. 
For. Pardon me, madam, for I meant not so. 
Trin. "What, what ! first praise me, and then 
again say, no ? 
short-liv'd pride ! Not fair ? alack for woe ! 
For. Yes, madam, fair. 

Frin. Nay, never paint me now ; 

Where fair is not, praise cannot mend the brow. 

Here, good my gi;uis,* take this for telling true ; 

\Gitiii'j hihi ntoney. 

I'air payment for foul words is more than due. 
For. Notliing but fair is that which you in- 
Frill. See, sec, my beauty will be sav'd by 

heresy in fair, fit for these days ! 

A giving hand, though foul, shall have fair 
praise. — 

But come, the bow :— Now mercy goes to kill, 

.\nd shooting well is then accounted ill. 

Tims will I save my credit in tlic shoot : 

Not wounding, pity would not let me do 't ; 

If wounding, then it was to show my skill, 

That more for, tlian jiurposc, meant to kill. 

And, out of question, so it is sometimes ; 

Glory grows guilty of detested crimes ; 

When, for fame's sake, for praise, an outward 

Wc bend to that the working of the heart : 

As I, for praise alone, now seek to spill 

The poor deer's blood, that my heart means no 
Bot/ct. Do not curst '' wives hold that self 

» Good my glati. The Forester is tlie metaphorical glau 
of the Prince«!i. 

l' Curi< — »hrewiih. 

e Sel/-sorfTfignly—\i9eA In the »ame y»y ai jclf-fufllf lenrjr; 
— not a sorereigniy or^r themielvci, but in thcir.»i:lvc». 





Only for praise' sake, ■when they strive to be 
Lords o'er their lords ? 

Prin. Only for praise : and praise we may 
To any lady that subdues a lord. 

Enter Costard. 

Boyel. Here comes a member of the com- 
Cost. God dig-you-den'^ all! Pray you, which 
is the head lady ? 

rrin. Thou shalt know her, fellow, by the 
*cst that have no heads. 
Cost. Which is the greatest lady, the liighest ? 
Prin. The thickest, and the tallest. 
Cost. The thickest, and the tallest ! it is so ; 
truth is truth. 
.In your vaist, mistress, were as slender as my 

One of these maids' girdles for your waist should 

be fit. 
Arc not you the chief M'oman? you are the 
thickest here. 
Prin. "What's youi* will, sir? what's your wUl? 
Cost. I have a letter from monsieur Biron to 

one lady llosalinc. 
Prin. 0, thy letter, thy letter; he's a good 
friend of mine : 
Stand aside, good bearer, — Boyet, you can carve ; 
Break up this capon. 

Boyet. I am bound to serve. — 

This letter is mistook, it importeth none here ; 
It is writ to Jaqucnetta. 

Prin. "We \vill read it, I swear : 

Break the neck of the wax, and every one give 
Boi/ct. [Rcads^ 

' ny heaven, that thou art fair is most infallible; true, 
that thou art beauteous; truth itself, that thou art lovely : 
More fairer than fair, beautiful than bc^auteous, truer than 
truth itiielf, have commiseration on thy lieroical vassal! 
The magnanimous and most illustrate king Ccphetua set 
eye upon the pernicious and intlubitate bcg(,'ar Zcnelophon ; 
and he it was that might rightly say, vcni, vidi, vici; which 
toannotanizeiJ in the vulgar, (Obasc and obscure vulgar!) 
videlicet, he cime, saw, and overcame; he came, one; saw, 
t«o; overcame, three. Whoc.ime? the king; Why did he 
come? to sec; Why did he seef to overcome: To whom 
come he? to the beggar; What saw lief the beggar; Who 
overcame he? the beggar; The conclusion is victory; On 
whose »i.le? the king's: the captive is cnrlch'd ; On whose 
side? the beggar's: The catastrophe is a nuptial: On whose 
sidcf Tlic king's? — no, on both in one, or one in both. I 
am the king; for so stands the comp.-irison : th.ou the beg- 
gar; for so witnesseth thy lowliness. Shall I command thy 
lovcf I may: Shall I enforce Ihy love? I could: Shall I 

» Dig-you-den. The popular corruption of aive you cood 

b In the folio and quarto, annol/ianize. Mr. Dyce advo- 
cates the modern anatomise. 

entreat thy love ? I will : What shalt thou exchange for 
rags? robes; For tittles, titles; For thyself, me. Thus, ex- 
pecting thy reply, I profane my lips on tliy foot, my eyes on 
thy picture, and my heart on thy every part. 

Thine, in the dearest design of industry, 

Don Aukiano de Armado.' 

Thus dost thou hear the Nemeau lion roar 
'Gainst thee, thou lamb, that staudest as his 

Submissive fall his princely feet before, 

And he from forage wUl incline to play : 
But if thou strive, poor soul, what art thou then ? 
Food for his rage, repasture for his den. 

Prin. What plume of feathers is he that in- 
dited this letter ? 
"WTiat vane ? what weather-cock ? did you ever 
hear better ? 
Boyet. I am much deceived, but I remember 

the style. 
Prin. Else your memory is bad, going o'er it 

Boyet. This Armado is a Spaniard, that keeps 
here in court ; 
A phantasm, a Monarcho,- and one that makes 

To the prince, and his book-mates. 

Prin. Thou, fellow, a word : 

"Who gave thee this letter ? 

Cost. I told you ; my lord. 

Prin. To whom sliouldst thou give it ? 
Cost. From my lord to my lady. 

Prin. From which lord, to which lady ? 
Cost. Fi'om my lord Biron, a good master of 
mine ; 
To a lady of France, that he call'd Rosaline. 
Prin. Thou hast mistaken his letter. Come, 
lords, away, 
llerc, sweet, put up this ; 't will be thine another 
day. {Exit Pkincess and train. 

Boyet. "Who is the suitor? who is the suitor? =• 
Pos. Shall I teach you to know ? 
Boyet. Ay, my continent of beauty. 
Ros. ^V^hy, she that bears the bow. 

Finely put off! 

Boyet. My lady goes to kill lioi-ns; but, if 
thou marry. 
Hang me by the neck, if horns that year mis- 
Finely put on ! 
Bos. "Well then, I am the shooter. 
Boyet. And who is your deer ? 

n Suitor. The old copies read "who is the shooter?' 
But Boyet ask<, "who is the suitor? " — and Rosaline gives 
him a quibtding answer—" she that bears the bow." We 
see, then, that suitor and shooter were pronounced alike in 
Shakspcre's day; and tliat the Scotch and Irish pronunci- 
ation of this word, which we laugh at now, is nearer the 
old English than our own pronunciation. 

Act IV.] 


[Scetcu II. 

Eos. If we choose by the Loiiis, yourself: 
come not near. 
Finely put on, indeed ! — 

Mar. You still wrangle with her, Boyet, and 

she strikes at the brow. 
Boyet. But she herself is hit lower : Have I 

hit her now ? 
lios. Shall I eouie upon thee with an old say- 
ing, that was a man when king Pepin of France 
was a little boy, ;is touching the hit it ? 

Boi/el. So I may answer thee with one as old, 
that was a woman when queen Guiucver of Bri- 
tain was a little wench, as touching the hit it. 
Ros. [Siiigiiitj.'] 

Thou canst not hit it, hit it, hit it, 
Thou canst not bit it, my good man. 


An I cannot, cannot, cannot, 
An I cannot, another can. 

[Exeunt Ros. andKxiu. 
Cost. By my troth, most pleasant ! how both 

did fit it ! 
JIar. A mark marvellous well shot ; for they 

both did hit it. 
Boyet. A mark ! 0, mark but that mark ; A 
mark says my lady ! 
Let the mark have a prick in 't to mete at, if it 
may be. 
Mar. "Wide o' the bow hand ! 1' ftuth, your 

hand is out. 
Cost. Lidecd, a' must shoot nearer, or he '11 

ne'er hit the clout. 
Boyet. An if my hand be out, then, belike 

your hand is in. 
Cost. Then will she get the npshot by cleav- 
ing the pin. 
Mur. Come, come, you talk greasily, your 

lips grow foul. 
Cost. She 's too hard for you at pricks, sir ; 

challenge her to bowl. 
Boyet. I fear too much rubbing ; Good night, 
my good owl. 

[Exeunt BoVET and M.viilA. 
Cost. By my soul, a swain ! a most simple 
clowni ! 
Lord, lord ! bow the ladies and I have put him 

down ! 
0' my troth, most sweet jests ! most incony 

vulgar wit ! 
When it comes so smoothly off, so obscenely, as 

it were, so fit. 
.Vrmado o' the one side, — O, a most dainty 


To see hun walk before a lady, and to bear her 

To see him kiss his hand ! and how most sweetly 

a' will swear ! 
And his page o' t'other side, that handful of wit f 
Ah, heavens, it is a most pat helical nit ! 
Sola, sola ! Jihoutiiif/ tcithin. 

[Exit CosTAliD, runnini/ 

SCENE \\.—The same. 
Enter IIolofernes," Sir Nathaniel, and Dlll. 

Nath. Very reverent sport, truly ; and done 
in the testimony of a good conscience. 

Hoi. The deer was, as you know, sanguis,— m 
blood ;'' ripe as a pomewater,'' who now hangeth 
like a jewel in the ear of cwlo, — the sky, the 
welkin, the heaven; and anon fallcth like a crab, 
on the face of terra, — the soil, the land, the 

Nath. Truly, master Ilolofemcs, the epithets 
arc sweetly varied, like a scholar at the le;ist : 
But, sir, I assure ye, it was a buck of the first 

IIol. Sir Nathaniel, hand credo. 

Dull. 'Twas not a haud credo; t' was a pricket.'" 

Hoi. Most barbarous intimation! yet a kind 
of insinuation, as it were in via, in way, of ex- 
plication; facerc, as it were, replication, or, 
rather, ostentare, to show, as it were, his meli- 
nation, — after his undressed, unpolished, unedu- 
cated, unpruncd, untrained, or rather unlettered, 
or, rathercst, unconfirmed fashion,— to insert 
again my haud credo for a deer. 

Dull. I said, the deer was not a haud credo ; 
't was a pricket. 

Hoi. Twice sod simplicity, his coctus ! — O 
thou monster ignorance, how deformed dost thou 
look ! 

Kath. Su-, he hath never fed of the dmntics 
that are bred in a book ; lie hath not cat paper, 
as it were ; he hath not drunk ink : his intellect 
is not replenished ; he is only an auiiiial, only 
sensible in the duller parts ; 
.Vnd such barren phmts are set before us, liial 

we thankful should be 
( Wliich we of taste and feeling are) for those pari s 
that do fructify in us more than he. 

a In the old editions llolofcrnes is distinguished as "The 
Pedant." , , 

b AH the old copies have this reading. Stccvens wouiu 
read " in tnnjuis — blood." 

c Pnmncalcr—a >Iiccieii of apple. 

<l Pricket Dull i "i r-. Sir Nathaniel a< to the ajfo 

of the buck. The r h that it wai " a buck of the 

first head "—the cor - H wa.1 " a pnck.-t The 

buck acquires a new name tvcry year ai h' i^* 

to maturity. The first he is a f.iwii ; • a 

pricket -.-the third, a sorrcll;— the fourth, a >"..^ , "C 
fifth, a buck of the fimt head ;— the sixth, a complete buck. 


Act IV.] 


[Scene II. 

For as it woiJd ill become me to be vaiii, indis- 
creet, or a fool, 
So, were there a patch set on Icaruiug, to see 

hiiu iu a school : 
But omne bene, say I; beiug of an old father's 

Many can brook the weather, that love not the 
Dull. You two are bookmen : Can you tell by 
your wit, 
What was a month old at Cain's birth, that 's not 
five weeks old as yet ? 
Uol. Dictynna, good man Dull ; Dictymia, 

good man Dull. 
Bull. What is Dictynna ? 
Nalh. A title to Phoebe, to Luna, to the moon. 
Uol. The moon was a month old, when Adam 
was no more ; 
And raughf not to five weeks, when he came to 

The allusion holds in the exchange. 

hull. 'Tis true indeed; the collusion bolds in 
the exchange. 

Uol. God comfort thy capacity ! I say, the 
allusion holds in the exchange. 

Bull. And I say the pollusion holds in the 
exchange ; for the moon is never but a month 
old : and I say beside, that 't was a pricket that 
the princess killed. 

Uol. Sir Nathaniel, will you hear an extcm- 
poral epitaph on the death of the deer ? and, to 
humour the ignorant, I have called the deer the 
princess killed, a pricket. 

Nalh. P<'rf/c, good master Ilolofcraes, ^er^e; 
so it shall please you to abrogate scurrility. 

Uol. I will sometliiug affect the letter;'' for it 
argues facility. 

Tlic praisefiil princess pierc'd and prick'd a pretty pleasing 
pricket ; 
Some say a sore ; but not a sore, till now made sore with 
Tlie dogs did yell ; put 1 to sore, then sore] jumps from 
thicket ; 
Or pricket, sore, or else sorel ; the people fall a hooting. 
If sore be sore, then L to sore makes fifty sores ;c O sore L ! 
Of one sore I an hundred make, by adding but one more L. 

Ncilfi. A rare talent ! 

Bull. If a talent be a claw,'' look how he 
claws him \\'ith a talent. 

Tfol. Tliis is a gift that I have, simple, simple ; 
a foolish extravagant spirit, full of forms, figures, 
shapes, objects, ideas, apprehensions, motions, 
revolutions : these arc begot m the ventricle of 

» JtntiyM — reached. 
•> AITcct the ielliT— affect alliteration. 
« The pedant brings in the Uoman numeral L, as the 
sign of fifty. 
•1 Talon wa3 formerly written talent. 
10 i 

memory, nourished in the womb of pia maler, 
and delivered upon the mellowing of occasion : 
But the gift is good iu those in whom it is acute, 
and I am thankful for it. 

Al^//^ Sir, I praise the Lord for you ; and so 
may my parishioners ; for their sous are well 
tutored by you, and their daughters profit very 
greatly under you : you are a good member of 
the commonwealth. 

Uol. Mehercle, if their sons be ingenious, 
they shall want no instruction : if their daugh- 
ters be capable, I will put it to them : But, vir 
■lapit qui pauca loquilur. A sovd feminine sa- 
luteth us. 

Enter Jaquenetta and Costakd. 

Jaq. God give you good morrow, master 

Uol. Master person, qttasi pcrs-on. And if 
one should be pierced, which is the one ? 

Cost. Marry, master scboolmaster, he that is 
Hkest to a hogshead. 

Uol. Of piercing a hogshead ! a good lustre of 
conceit iu a tin-f of earth ; fire enough for a flint, 
pearl enough for a swine : 't is pretty ; it is well. 
Jaq. Good master parson, be so good as read 
me this letter ; it was given me by Costard, and 
sent me from Don Armado; I beseech you, 
read it. 

Uol. Fauste, precor gelida quando pectis omne 
sub v.mhrd 
Enminatf—und so forth. Ah, good old Man 

I may speak of thee as the traveller doth of 
Venice : 

Vlncffici, Vbiegia, 

Chi own fe vedc, ei non te prer/ia.'^ 
Old Mantuan ! old Mantuan ! Who under- 
standeth thee not, loves ihee not. — Ut, re, sol, 
la, mi, fa.^ — Under pardon, sir, what are the 

a Master person. The derivation ot parson was, perhaps, 
commonly understood In Shakspere's time, and parson and 
person were used indifferently, lilackstone lias explained 
the word: "A jiarson, persona ecc/csia.'. is one that liatli full 
possession of all the rights of a parochial church. He is 
called parson, persona, because hy his person, tlie church, 
which is an invisible body, is represented." — Commentaries, 
b. 1. 

b The good old Mantuan was Job. Baptist Mantuanus, a 
Carmelite, whose Eclogues were translated into English by 
George Turbervilc, in 15G7. His first Eclogue commences 
with Fatisie, precor gclidu ; and Farnaby, in his preface to 
Martial, says that pedants thought more highly of the 
Fauste, precor gelida, than of the Arma rirumque cano. 
Here, again, the unlearned Shakspere hits the mark when 
he meddles with learned matters. 

c A proverbial expression applied to Venice, which we 
find thus in Howell's Letters : — 

" Vcnetia, Venetia, chi non te vede, non te pregia. 
Ma chi t'ha troppo veduto le dispregia." 

•J The pedant is in his altitudes. He has quoted Latin 
and Italian ; and in his self-satisfaction he sol-fas, to re- 
create himself and to show his musical skill. 

kcr I V.J 


[Scene III. 

contents? Or, rather, as Horace says in his — 
What, my soul, verses ? 

Aa<A. Ay, sir, and very learned. 

Hoi. Let me hear a start", a stanza, a verse ; 
I^je, domiiie. 

If love make nic forswoni, liovr shall I swear to love f 
Ah, never faith could hold, if not to beauty vowed ! 
Though to myself forswoni, to thee I '11 faithful prove; 
Those thoui;hts to me were oaks, to thee like osiers 
Study )iis bias leaves, and makes his book thine eyes, 
Where all those pleasures live, that art would com- 
prehend : 
If knowledge be the mark, to know thee shall suffice ; 
Well learned is that tongue, that will can thee com- 
mend : 
All ijjnorant that soul, that sees thee without wonder; 

(Which is to me some praise, that I thy parts admire;) 
Thy eye Jove's lightning bears, thy voice his dreadful 
Which, not to anger bent, is music, and sweet fire. 
Celestial as thou art, oh pardon, love, this wrong, 
That sings heaven's praise with such an earthly tongue ! 

IIol. You find not the apostrophes, and so 
miss the accent : let me supervise the canzonet. 
Here are only numbers ratified; but, for the 
elegancy, facility, and golden cadence of poesy, 
caret. Ovidius !Xaso was the man : and why, 
indeed, Naso ; but for smelling out the odori- 
ferous flowers of fancy, the jerks of invention ? 
Imitari, is nothing: so doth the hound his 
master, the ape his keeper, the tired horse his 
rider. But damosella virgin, was this directed 
to you ? 

Jaq. Ay, sir, from one Monsieur Biron, one 
of the strange queen's lords. 

Hoi. I will ovcrglancc the superscript. " To 
the snow-white hand of the most beauteous 
lady Rosaline." I will look again on the in- 
tellect of the letter, for the nomination of the 
party \\'riting to the person written unto : 

" Your ladyship's in all desired employment, 
BmoN." Sir Nathaniel, this Biron is one of the 
votaries with the king ; and here he hath framed 
a letter to a sequent of tlie stranger queen's, 
which, accidentally, or by the way of progression, 
hath miscarried.— Trip and go, my sweet; de- 
liver this paper into the royal hand of the king ; 
it may concern much: Stay not thy compli- 
ment ; I forgive tliy duty ; adieu. 

Jaq. Good Costard, go with me.— Sir, God 
save your hfe ! 

Cost. Have with thee, my girl. 

\_Exeunt Cost, and J.vQ. 

Nath. Sir, you have done this in the fear of 

» " You find not the apostrophes," »ay» Holofemes. We 
Judge it, therefore, right to print towed and bowed, instead of 
row'd and bow'd. 

God, very rchgiously ; ami, as a fcrt:!!!! father 

IIol. Sir, tcU not me of the latlipr, I do fear 
colourable colours. But, to return to the verses ; 
Did they please you, Sir Nalhauicl 'i 

Nath. Mar\'ellous well for the pen. 

Hoi. I do dine to-day at the father's of a 
certain jiupil of mine ; where if, Ijtfore rcixist, 
it shall please you to gratify the table with a 
grace, I will, on my privilege I have with the 
parents of the aforesaid child or pupil, undertake 
your ben vciiuto ; where I will ])rovc those 
verses to be very unlearned, neither savouring 
of poetry, wit, nor invention : I beseech your 

Katfi. And thank you too : for society (saith 
the text) is the happiness of life. 

Hoi. And, certes, the text most infallibly 
concludes it.— Sir, [to Dull] I do invite you 
too ; you sh:dl not say me, nay : j)auca verba. 
Away; the gentles are at their game, and we 
will to our recreation. IKieunt. 

SCENE HI.— Another part of the tame. 
Enter BlRoy, tcith a paper. 

Biron. Tlie king he is hunting the deer; 1 
am coursing myself : they have pitched a toil ; 
I am toiling in a pitch ; pitch that defiles ; defile ! 
a foul word. Well, Sit thee down, sorrow ! for 
so they say the fool said, and so say I, and I 
the fool. 'Well proved, wit ! By the Lord, this 
love is as mad as Ajax : it kills sheep ; it kills 
me, I a sheep : "Well proved again on my side ! 
I will not love : If I do, hang me ; i' faith, I will 
not. 0, but her eye,— by this light, but for 
her eye, I would not love her; yes, for lier two 
eyes. Well, I do nothing in the world but lie, 
and lie in my throat. By heaven, I do love: 
and it hath taught me to rhyme, and to be me- 
lancholy ; and here is i)art of my rhyme, and 
here my melancholy. Well, she hath one o' my 
sonnets akcady : the clown bore it, the fool sent 
it, and the lady hath it : sweet clown, sweeter 
fool, sweetest lady ! By the world, I would not 
care a pin if the other three were in: Here 
comes one with a paper ; God give him grace to 
groan. [6V/j tip into a tree. 

Enter the King, xcith a paper. 

King. Ah me ! 

Biron. [yhiJe.] Shot, by heaven !— Proceed, 
sweet Cupid ; thou hast thump'd him with thy 
bird-bolt under the left pap :— 1' faith secrets.— 




[Scene III. 

King. \Reads?\ 

So sweet a kiss the golden sun gives not 

To those fresh morning drops upon the rose, 
As thy eye-beams, M-lien their fresh rays have smot=« 

The night of dew that on my cheeks down flows : 
Nor shines the silver moon one half so bright 

Tlirough the tran:^parent bosom of the deep, 
As doth thy face through tears of mine give light : 

Thou sliin'bt in every tear that I do weep , 
No drop but as a coach doth carry thee, 

So ridest thou triumphing in my woe : 
Do but behold the tears that swell in me. 

And they thy glory through my grief will show : 
But do not love thyself; then thou wilt keep 
My tears for glasses, and still make me weep. 
O queen of queens, how far dost thou excel ! 
No thought can tliiuk, nor tongue of mortal tell. — 

How shall she know my griefs ? I '11 drop the 

paper ; 
Sweet leaves shade folly. Who is he comes 

here ? \Slei)s aside. 

Enter Longaville, with a paper. 

What, Longavillc ! and reading ! listen, ear. 
Biron. Kow, in thy likeness, one more fool, 
appear ! {_Aside. 

Long. Ah me ! I am forsworn. 
Biron. W^hy, he comes in like a peijurc, wear- 
ing papers."^ lAside. 
King. In love, I hope; Sweet fellowship in 
shame ! lAside. 
Biron. One drunkard loves another of the 
name. \_A.nde. 
Long. Am I the first that have been peijur'd 

Biron. [y/s(</<?.] I coidd put thee in comfort ; 
not by two, that 1 know : 
niou mak'st tlic triumviry, the corner cap of 

The shape of Love's Tyburn that hangs up sim- 
Long. I fear, these stubborn lines lack power 
to move ; 
sweet Maria, empress of my love 
TTiesc numbers will I tear and ^vTitc in prose. 
Biron. [Aside.'] 0, rhymes are guards *= on 
wanton Cupid's hose : 
Disfigure not his slop.'' 
Long. Tliis same shall go. — 

[//(? reads the sonnet. 

Did not the heavenly rhetoric of thine eye 

('Gainst whom the world cannot hold argument) 
Pcrsua<le my heart to this false perjury? 
Vows for thcc broke deserve not puiiiithment. 
• 5mo< — the old preterite oi nmotr. 

>> Tlic perjure— l\\e pcijurcr— when exposed on the pillory 
— wore " papers of perjury." 

c Gwflrr/i— the hems or boundaries of a garment— gene- 
rally ornamented. 

d The ori^'inal has iAo;?. Theobald introduced j/od; hose 
as a part of dress, is a »/on. ' 


A woman I forswore ; but, I will prove. 

Thou being a goddess, I forswore not thee: 
My vow was earthly, thou a heavenly love ; 

Thy grace being gain'd, cures all disgrace in me. 
Vows are but breath, and breath a vapour is : 

Then thou, fair sun, which on my earth dost shine, 
Exhal'st this vapour vow ; in thee it is : 

If broken then, it is no fault of mine, 
If by me broke. What fool is not so wise, 
To lose an oath to win a paradise? 

Biron. [Aside.] This is the liver vein, whicli 

makes flesh a deity : 
A green goose, a goddess : pure, pure idolatry. 
God amend us, God amend ! we are much out 

o' the way. 

Enter Dumain, wit A a paper. 

Long. By whom shall I send this ? — Com- 
pany ! stay. [Stepping aside. 
Biron. [Aside?^ All liid, all liid, an old infant 
play : 
Like a demi-god here sit I in the sky. 
And wretched fools' secrets hcedfully o'er-eye. 
More sacks to the mill ! O heavens, I have my 

Dumain transform'd : four woodcocks in a dish ! 
Bum. most divine Kate ! 
Biron. most profane coxcomb ! 

Bum. By heaven, the wonder of a mortal 

Biron. By earth she is not, corporal : '^ there 
you lie. [Aside. 

Bum. Her amber hairs for foul have amber 

Biron. An amber-eolour'd )-a\cu was well 
noted. [Aside. 

Bum. As upright as the cedar. 
Biron. Stoop, I say ; 

Her shoulder is with child. [Aside. 

Bum. As fair as day. 

Biron. Ay, as some days; but then no sun 
must shine. [Aside. 

Dion. that I had my wish ! 
Long. And I had mine ! 


King. And I mine too, good lord ! [Aside. 

Biron. Amen, so I had mine: Is not that a 

good word ? [Aside. 

Bum. I would forget her ; but a fever she 

Reigns ia my blood, and will remember'd be. 

.1 She is not, corpora!. The received rending is, "She is 
but corporal." Ours is the ancient reading; and Douce 
repudiates the modern cliange. liiron calls Dumain, cor- 
poral, as he had formcrlv named himself (Act III.) " cor- 
poral of his field,"— of Cupid's field. 

I' Cotcd — quoted. 

Act IV.] 



Biron. A fever iu your blood ! why, theu 
VVoidd let her out iu saucers ; Sweet niisprisiou ! 

Dum. Once more I '11 read the ode that 1 have 

Biron. Ouec more I'll maik how love can 
vary wit. [Jsidi;. 


On a day, (;ilack ihe day !) 
Love, whose inuntli is ever May, 
Spied a blossom, passini; fair, 
Playing; in the wanton air. 
ThrouL;h tlie velvet leaves the wind, 
All unseen, 'gan passage find; 
That tlie lover, sick to death, 
AVisli'd himself the heaven's breath. 
Air, quolh he, thy cheeks may blow ; 
Air, would I niiglit triumph so! 
But, alack, my hand is sworn 
Ne'er to pluck thee from thy thorn : 
Vow, alack, for youth unmeet ; 
Youth so apt to pluck a sweet. 
Do not call it sin in me, 
That I am forsworn for thee: 
Thou for whom" Jove would swear 
Juno but an Ethiop were ; 
And deny himself for Jove, 
Turning mortal for thy love.3 

This will I scud ; and something else more plain, 
That shall express my true love's fasting pain. 
O, would the King, Biron, and Lougavillc, 
Were lovers too ! Ill, to example ill. 
Would from my forehead wipe a pei;jur'd note ; 
For none offend, Avhere all alike do dote. 

Lonff. Duinain, [ctdcancing'] thy love is far 

from charity. 
That in love's grief desir'st society : 
You may look pale, but I should blush, I know, 
To be o'erheard, and taken napj)iug so. 

King. Come, sir, [adcancing'] you blush ; as 

his youi" case is such ; 
You chide at him, offending twice as much : 
You do not love !Maria ; Longaville 
Did never sonnet for her sake compQe ; 
Nor never lay his wreathed arms athwart 
His loving bosom, to keep down his heart. 
I have been closely shrouded in tliis 
And mark'd you both, and for you both did 

I heard your guilty rhymes, obscrv'd your 

fashion ; 
Saw sighs reck from you, noted well your 

Ah mo ! says one ; O Jove ! the other cries ; 
One, her hairs were gold, crj'stal the other's 


» Pope introduced «>'»— other editors «r<n— neither of 
which is the reading of the originals, or required by the 

You would for paradise break faith and troth ; 

[To Long. 
And Jove, for your love, would infringe an oath. 

{To DUM.MN. 

What will Biron say, when that he shtdl hear 
Fiiith infringed, which such zeal did swear ? 
How will he scorn ! how will he spend his wit ! 
How will he triuinpli, leap, and laugh at it ! 
For all the wealth that ever I did see, 
I would not have him know so much by mc. 

Biron. Now step I forth to whip— 
Ah, good my liege, I pray thee, pardon mc : 

[Descends from the tree. 
Good heart, what grace hast thou, thus to reprove 
These worms for loving, tiiat art most in love ? 
Your eyes do make no coaches ; in your tears. 
There is no certain princess that appears : 
You'll not be peijur'd, 'tis a hateful thing; 
Tush, none but minstrels like of sonneting. 
But are you not ashamed ? nay, arc you nof, 
All three of you, to be thus much o'crshot ? 
You found his mote; the king your mote'did 

But I a beam do find in each of three. 
O, what a scene of foolery have I seen, 
Of sighs, of groans, of sorrow, and of teen ! 

me, with what strict patience have I sat, 
To see a king transformed to a gnat ! 

To see great Hercules whipping a gig, 

And profound Solomon tuning a jig. 

And Nestor play at push-])in witii the boys, 

And critic Timon laugh at idle toys ! 

Where lies thy grief, tell mc, good Dumain ? 

And, gentle Longaville, where lies thy pain ? 

And where my liege's ? all about the breast : — 

A caudle, ho ! 

King. Too bitter is thy jest. 

Are we betray'd thus to thy over-view ? 

Biron. Not you to me, but I betray'd by 
you : 
T, that am honest; I, that hold it sin 
To break the vow I am engiiged in ; 

1 am betray'd, by keeping company 

With men like mcn,« of strange inconstancy. 
When shall you sec me write a thing in rhyme ? 
Or groan for Joan? or spend a mmute's time 
In pruning mc ? ^VllCU shall you hear that I 
Will praise a hand, a foot, a face, an eye, 
A gait, a state, a brow, a breast, a waist, 
A leg, a lunb ? — 

a. Mote. The quarto and folio have each the synonyinom 
void molh. 

^ The original has — 

" Not you by me, but I betray'd to you." 
Monck M.ison suggested the tran^posiilon. 

e Mm like men. J he epithet «/r/inj7(f 
was introduced in the second folio. Sidney Walker com- 
municated to Mr. Pycc, who adopted it, the reading— 
' With men like you, men of inconstancy." 


Act IV.] 


[Scene 111. 

King. Soft ; wliitlicr away so fast ? 

A tme man, or a thief, tliat gallops so ? 

Biron. I post from love ; good lover, let me go. 

Tinier Jaquenetta and Costard. 

Jaq, God bless the king ! 
King. Wliat present hast thou there ? 

Cost. Some eertain treason. 
King. What makes treason here ? 

Cost. Nay, it makes nothing, sir. 
King. If it mar nothing neither, 

The treason, and you, go in peace away together. 
Jaq. I beseech your grace, let this letter be 
Oiu- parson misdoubts it ; it was treason, he 
King. Biron, read it over, 

\Giving him the letter. 
Where hadst thou it ? 
Jaq. Of Costard. 
King. Where hadst thou it ? 
Cost. Of Duu Adraraadio, Dun Adramadio. 
King. How now ! what is in you ? why dost 

thou tear it ? 
Biron. A toy, my liege, a toy; your grace 

needs not fear it. 
Lo}ig. It did move him to passion, and there- 
fore let 's hear it. 
Bum. It is Biron's writing, and here is his 
name. [^Piclcs up the pieees. 

Biron. Ah, you whoreson loggerhead, [to 
Costard] you were bom to do me 
shame. — 
Guilty, my lord, guilty ; I confess, I confess. 
King. ^V'iiat? 

Biron. That you three fools lack'd me fool to 
make up the mess ; 
He, he, and you; and you, my liege, and I, 
Arc pick-purses in love, and wc deserve to die. 
0, dismiss this audience, and I shall tell you 
Dim. Now the number is even. 
Biron. True, true ; we arc four : — 

Will these turtles be gone? 

King. ITence, sirs ; away. 

Cost. Walk aside the true folk, and let the trai- 
tor stay. [Exeunt Cost, and Jaq. 
Biron. Sweet lords, sweet lovers, O let us 
embrace ! 
As true we are, as flesh and blood can be : 
The sea will ebb and flow, heaven show liis 
Young blood doth not obey an old decree : 
Wc cannot cross the cause why we arc bom ; 
Tlicrefore, of all hands must wc be forsworn. 


King. What, did these rent lines show some 

love of thine ? 
Btro)i. Did they, quoth you ? Who sees the 
heavenly Rosaline, 
That, like a rude and savage man of lude,^ 

At the first opening of the gorgeous east, 
Bows not his vassal head : and, strucken blind. 

Kisses the base ground with obedient breast ? 
What peremptory eagle-sighted eye 

Dares look upon the heaven of her brow. 
That is not blinded by her majesty ? 

King. What zeal, what fuj-y hath inspir'd thee 
My love, her mistress, is a gracious moon ; 

She, an attending star, scarce seen a light. 
Biron. My eyes are then no eyes, nor I 

Biron : 
0, but for my love, day would tui'n to night ! 
Of all complexions, the eull'd sovereignty 

Do meet, as at a fair, in her fair cheek ; 
Where several worthies make one dignity ; 

Where nothing wants, that want itself doth 
Lend me the flourish of all gentle tongues, — 

Fie, painted rhetoric ! O, she needs it not : 
To things of sale a seller's praise belongs ; 

She passes praise : then praise too short 
doth blot. 
A wither'd hermit, five-score winters worn. 

Might shake off fifty, looking in her eye : 
Beauty doth varnish age, as if new-born. 

And gives the eruteh the cradle's infancy. 
0, 't is the sun that makcth all things shine ! 
King. By heaven, thy love is black as ebony ! 
Biron. Is ebony like her ? O wood divine ! 
A wife of such wood were felicity. 
0, who can give an oath ? where is a book ? 

That I may swear, beauty doth beauty lack : 
If tliat she learn not of her eye to look : 
No face is fair, that is not full so black. 
King. paradox ! Black is the badge of hell, 
The hue of dungeons, and the school of 
night ! 
And beauty's crest becomes the heavens well. 
Biron. Devils soonest tempt, resembling spii'its 
of light. 
0, if in black my lady's brows be deck'd, 

It mourns, that painting, and usurping hair. 
Should ravish dotcrs with a false aspect ; 

And therefore is slic born to make black 
Her favour turns the fashion of the days ; 

For native blood is counted painting now; 
And therefore red, that would avoid dispraise, 
Paints itself black to imitate her brow. 

Act IV. 1 


[ScEKK in 

Dum. To look like her, are chinmey-sweepcrs 

Long. Aud, siiicc her time, are colliers couuted 

Kiiiff. Aud Ethiops of their sweet complexion 

Dum. Dark needs no caudles now, for dark 

is light. 
Biron. Your mistresses dare never come in 
For fear their colours should be wash'd away. 
Kiiiff. 'T were good, youis did ; for, sir, to tell 
you plain, 
I'll find a fairer face not wash'd to-day. 
Biron. I'll prove her fair, or talk till dooms- 
day here. 
King. No devil will fright tine then so much 

as she. 
Dim. I never knew man hold vile stuff so dear. 
Ijong. Look, here 's thy love : my foot and her 
face see. [Showing his shoe. 

Biron. 0, if the streets were paved with thine 
Her feet were much too dainty for such 
tread ! 
D/iiii. O vile ! then as she goes, wliat upward 
The street should see as she walk'd over head. 
King. But what of tliis ? Are we not all in love ? 
Biron. 0, nothing so sure; and thereby all 

King. Then leave this chat ; and, good Biron, 
now prove 
Our loving lawful, and our faith not torn. 
Dum. Ay, marry, there ; — some flattery for 

tills evil. 
Long. 0, some authority how to proceed ; 
Some tricks, some quillets," how to cheat the 
D/tm. Some salve for perjury. 
Biron. O, 't is more than need ! — 

Have at you then, affection's men at arms : 
Consider, what you first did swear unto ; — 
To fast,— to study, — and to sec no woman ;— 
Flat treason 'gainst the kingly state of youth. 
Say, can you fast ? your stomachs arc too young ; 
Aud abstinence engenders maladies. 
And where that you have vow'd to study, lords, 
In that each of you hath forsworn his book : 
Can you still dream, and pore, and tliereon 

For when would you, ray lord, or you, or you. 

n Qiiilirt and qundlibtt cich signify .-» fallacious subtilty you please — an argument without foundation. 

Milton says " let not human quilUti keep back divine 

Have found the ground of study's excelleuce, 
Without the beauty of a woman's face ? 
From women's eyes this doctrine I derive : 
They arc the ground, the books, the academes, 
From whence doth spring the tnie Promethean 

AVliy, uuivi'isal ])h)dding prisons up 
The nimble spirits in the arteries; 
As motion, and long-during action, tires 
The sinewy vigour of tlic traveller. 
Now, for not looking ou a woman's face. 
You have in that forsworn the use of eyes ; 
And study too, the causer of your vow : 
For where is any autlior in the world, 
Teaches such beauty as a woman's eye ? 
Lcaniing is but an adjinict to ourself, 
And where we are, our learning likewise is. 
Then, when ourselves we see in ladiis' eyes. 
With ourselves, — 

Do we not likewise see our learning there? 
0, we have made a vow to study, lords ; 
Aud in that vow we have forsworn our books ; 
For when would you, my liege, or you, or you,* 
In leaden contemplation, have found out 
Sueh fiery nundiers, as the prompting eyes 
Of beauty's tutors have enrich'd you with ? 
Other slow arts entirely keep the brain ; 
And therefore fmdiiig barren praetisers. 
Scarce show a harvest of their heavy toil : 
But love, first learned in a lady's eyes, 
Lives not alone immured in the brain ; 
But with the motion of all elements, 
Coxirscs as swift as thought in every power ; 
.\nd gives to every power a doulile power, 
Above their functions and their ofliecs. 
It adds a precious seeing to the eye ; 
A lover's eyes will gaze an eagle l)liud ; 
A lover's ear will hear the lowest sound. 
When the suspicious head of theft is stopp'd ; 
Lore's feeling is more soft, and sensil)le. 
Than are tlic tender horns of cockled snails ; 
Love's tongue proves dainty Bacchus gross ia 

taste : 
For valour, is not love a Hercules, 
Still climbing trees in the Hc^perides ? 
Subtle as sphinx ; as sweet, and musical, 
As bright Apollo's lute, stning with his hair; 
And, when love speaks, the voice of all tiie gods 
Makes heaven drowsy with the harmony." 
Never durst poet touch a pen to write. 
Until his ink were tcmpcr'd with love's .^ighs. 

« This fine pas.iaKC has been nuRhtily obscured by the 
commcnt.itors. The meaning nppcars to us ko clear amidst 
the blaze of pneticnl l)cauty, that an explanation U Jcarccly 
wanted:— When love speaks, the rcspon»i%c harmony of 
the voice of all the gods makes hc.iven drow»y. 


Act IV.] 


[Scene III. 

0, then his lines would ravish savage cars, 
And plant in tyrants mild humility. 
From women's eyes this doctrine I derive : 
They si^arklc still the right Promethean fire ; 
They are the books, the arts, the academes, 
That show, contain, and nourish all the world ; 
Else, none at all in aught proves excellent : 
Then fools you were these Momcn to forswear ; 
Or, kccpmg what is sworn, you will prove fools 
For wisdom's sake, a word that aU men love ; 
Or for love's sake, a word that loves all men ; 
Or for men's sake, the authors of these women : 
Or women's sake, by whom we men are men ; 
Let us once lose our oaths, to find oui'selvcs. 
Or else we lose ourselves to keep our oaths : 
It is religion to be thus forsworn : 
For charity itself fulfils the law ; 
And wlio can sever love from charity ? 

A'i?/j. Saint Cupid, then ! and soldiers, to the 

Biron. Advance your standards, and upon 
them lords; 
Pell-mell, down with them! but be first advis'd, 
In conflict that you get the sim of them. 

Long. Now to plain-dealing ; lay these glozes 
Shfdl we resolve to woo these girls of France ? 
Kinff. And win them too : therefore let us 
Some entertainment for them in their tents. 
Biron. Tu'st, from the park let us conduct 
them thither ; 
Then, homeward, every man attach the hand 
Of his fair mistress : in the afternoon 
We will with some strange pastime solace them. 
Such as the sliortness of the time can shape ; 
For revels, dances, masks, and merry hours. 
Fore-run fan- Love, strewing her way with 
King. Away, away ! no time shall be omitted, 
That will be time, and may by us be fitted. 
Biron. Allom ! Allans ! — Sow'd cockle reap'd 
no corn ; 
And justice always whirls in equal mea- 
sure : 
Light wenches may prove plagues to men for- 
sworn ; 
If so, our copper buys no better treasure. 



Sc. I. p. 101.—" O heresy in fair, fit for these days ! " 

" O heresy in /aiVA, fit for these days ! " — Collier. 
The context shows tliat fair in tlie riglit word : it is used 
for beauty, as it often was. (See Conudy of Errors.) 
Sc. I. p. 103. — " Lookin;; l)abies in liur eyes, his passion 

to declare." — Collier. 
This is a new line, inserted after — 
" To see liim kiss his hand ! and how most sweetly a' will 
swear ! " 
Is the new line ShaVspere's or the Corrector's? In 
Fletcher's 'Loyal Subject,' lirst printed in 1C17, we have the 
very words : — 

" Look babies in your eyes, my pretty sweet one." 
Massingcr, too, has the same words in ' The Renegade,' 
and Jlcrrick repeats the image. Xlie Corrector had not far 
to seek for a new rhyming line. We cannot suppose he 
lived niter Moore, who popularised the image. 

Sc. in p. 108. — "The hue of dungeons, and the school 
of night." 

This is the reading of the original, and is adopted by 
Tieck in his translation, as giving the notion of something 
dark, wearisome, and comfortless. Theobald corrected it 
to scowl, and also suggested stole. Mr. Collier's Corrector 
gives shiide, which Mr. White has adopted ; and Mr. Dyce 
suggests soil. 

Sc. III. p. 10!). — "Teaches such beauly as a woman's 
" Teaches such learning as a woman's eye."— Collier. 

The name sesthetics is modern; but Shakspere might, 
out of Ills own self-consciousness, have known that the 
philosophy of beauty was a science. Mr. Staunton would 
prefer sliidij, if chtnged at all; Mr. White gives learning, 
and says beauty is an easy misprint. 


' Scene I. — " nitere it the huh, 

That tre must stand aiid play the mmiienr in f* 

KoTAL and noble ladies, in tho days of Elizabeth, 
delighted in the .-umcwhat luuefined sport of shoot- 
ing deer with ;i cross-bow. In the " :illeyd green" 
of Windsor or of Greenwich Purks, thet^uecn would 
take her stand on an elevated platforui, and, as the 
pricket or the buck was driven p;ist her, would aim 
the death-shaft, amidst the acclamations of her ad- 
miring courtiers. The ladies, it ajipeiirs, were skilful 
enough at this sylvan butchering. Sir Fr;\ncis Leake 
writes to the Earl of Shrewsbury, " Your lordship 
has sent me a very great and fat stag, the welconier 
being stricken by your right honourable lady's 
hand." The practice was as old as the romances of 
the middle ages ; but in those days the ladies were 
sometime < not so expert as the Countess of Shrews- 
bury ; for, in tho history of Prince Arthur, a fair 
huntress wounds Sir Launcelot of the Lake, instead 
of the stag at which she aims. 

'Scene 1. — "--1 Monarcho." 

This allusion is to a mad Italian, commonly called 
the monarch, whose epitaph, or description, was 
written by Churchy:vn1, in 15S0. His notion wa.", 
that he was sovereign of tho world ; and one of his 
conceits, recorded by Scot in his " Discovery of 
Witchcraft,'" 15S4, was, that all the ships that came 
into the port of London belonged to him. 

» Scene 111. — "On a day," dc. 

This exquisite canzonet was published iu the 
miscellany called " The Passionate Pilgrim," and 
it also appears in "Engbnd's Helicon," 1614, 
The line, 

" Thou for whom Jove ■would swear," 

reads thus in all the old copies; but some 
modem editors have tampered with the rhythm, 
by giving us 

" Thou for whom even Jove would jwear." 

In the same way, the fine pause after the thinl 
sylLable of 

" There to meet with Macbeth, 

has been sought to be destroyed by thnisting in 
another syllable. 

This ode, as Shakspcre terms it, was set to music 
upwards of seventy years ago, by Jackson, of Exct'ir, 
for three men's voices, and a more bejiu tif ul, finished, 

find masterly composition, of tho kind, the English 
school of music cannot produce : — for that we have a 
school, and ono of which wo need not bo ashanjc<l, 
will soon cease to be denied. Tho composer c:dls 
iXi'ii An Eleijy. Thisname isnot quite copsistcut with 
our notion of the wonl Elegy ; — but amongst the 
Greeks and Romans it did not necess;uily mean a 
mournful poem — it was merely verses to be sung. 
Jackson uses the word in somewhat too scholarly 
a manner. Ho was a man of letters, posseasing a 
I veiy superior understanding, and not a mere 
' mu.sician. Indeed, it is but fair to add, that really 
original and great composers have generally been 
men of strong minds ; the exceptions are only 
enough in number to prove the rule. 

* Scene III. — " ThcU, lile a rude and tarage man 

of Inde." 

Shakspere might have found an account of the 
Ghebers, or fire-worshipers of the East, in some of 
the travellera whoso works had preceded Hakluyt's 
collection. Nothing can be finer or more accurate 
than this description. The Ghebers. as tho elegant 
poet of "Lalla Rookh" tells us, wore not blind 
idolaters ; they worshipped the Creator in the moht 
splendid of his works : — 

" Ves, — I am of that inipiouj raee, 

Those Slaves of Kir» who. tn"ni and even. 
Hail their Creator 
Among the liviii . • en ! " 

* Scene III. — "For vchcn uould you, my linje, or 

you, or you." 

It will bo observed that this line is almost a 
repetition of a previous one, 

" For when would you, my lord, or you, or you ; " 

and in the same manner throughout this speech the 
most emphatic parts of tho reasoning are repeated 
with variations. Ujwn this, conjecture goes to work ; 
and it is pronounced that the lines arc unnecessarily 
repeated. Some of the commentators understood 
little of rhythm, and they were not very accurate 
judges of rhetoric. One of the grcitest evidences of 
skill in an orator is the enforcement of an idea by 
repetition, without rcpeatingtli' 'orin of ita 

original announcement. The sj Ulysses in 

the thinl act of Troilus and Cressida, 

•' Time hath, my lord, a wallet on hli back," 
is a wonderful example of this art. 


s^?= ,/ 1^<-. 



':x0rf'^nl\ ' \ Ifc 


SCENE I. — Another part of the same. 
Enter Holofehnes, Sir Nathaniel, and Dull. 

Ilol. Satis quod svfficit. 

Nath. I praise God for you, sir : your reasons 
at dinner have been sharp and sententious ; plea- 
sant without scurrility, witty without affection," 
audacious without impudcucy, learned without 
opinion, and strange without heresy. I did 
converse this quondam day with a companion of 
the king's, who is intituled, nominated, or called, 
Don A.driano de Armado. 

Ilol. Novi hominem tanquam te : His humour 
is lofty, his discourse peremptory, his tongue 
filed,'' his eye ambitious, his gait m;ijcstical, and 
his general behaviour vain, ridiculous, and thra- 
sonical.'= He is too picked, too spruce, too 
affected, too odd, as it were, too peregrinate, as 
I may call it. 

Nath. A most singular and choice epithet. 

[^Talces out his tahle-booJc. 

Ilol. lie drawctli out the thread of his ver- 
bosity finer than the staple of his argu-Tient. I 
abhor such fanatical fantasms, such insociablc 

» Affeclinn — aireclation. 
b Filed — polished. 

c Thrasonical— from Thraso. the boasting soldier of Te- 


and point-devise " companions ; such rackers of 
orthography, as to speak, dout, fine, when he 
should say, doubt ; dct,whcu!ic should pronounce 
debt ; — d, e, b, t ; not d, c, t ; — he clcpeth a calf, 
cauf; half, hauf; neighbour, rocatur, nebour; 
neigh, abbreviated, ne: This is abiioininable, 
(which he would call abominable,) it insinuateth 
me of insauie; No intelligis domine? to make 
Irautic, lunatic. 

Nath. Jmus Bco hone intclVujo. 

Ilol. Bone? bone, for bene: Priscian a 

little seratch'd; 't will serve. 

Enter Armado, Moth, aiid Costakd. 

Nath. Videsne quis venit? 

Ilol. Video et gaudeo. 

Arm. Chirra ! \To Moth. 

Ilol. Qnare Chirra, not sirrah ? 

1^ Poinl-dfiiso — nice to excess, and sometimes, ad- 
verbially, for exactly, with the utmost nicety. GifTord 
thinks this must have been a mathimatical phrase. Other 
examples of its use are found in Shakspere — and in Ilolin- 
shcd, Drayton, and lien Jonson. The ])hrase, Douce says, 
"has been supplied from the labours of the needle. 
Poind, \n llic French lani^uage, denotes a stitch: devise, 
anytliini? invented, disposed, or arranged. Point-devise 
was therefore a j)articular sort of patterned lace worked 
witli the needle; .and the term poinlAiicc is still familiar 
to every female." It is incorrect to write point-de-vice, as 
is usually done. 

Act v.] 



Arm. Men of peace, well encounter'd. 

IIol. Must nulitary sir, salutation. 

Moth. They have been at a great feast of lan- 
guages, and stolen the seraps. 

[^To CosTAun aside. 

Cost. 0, they have lived long on the alms- 
basket of words ! I marvel, thy master hath not 
eaten thee for a word; for thou art not so long 
by the head as hoiiorijicaljilitiuruii/iitibiis : ' thou 
art easier swallowed than a llap-dragon. 

Muf/i. Peace ; the peal begins. 

Arm. Monsieur, {_/o IJ.OL.] are you not Ict- 

Mo/L Yes, yes ; he teaches boys the horn- 
book ; — 
What is a, b, spelt backward with u horn on his 
head ? 

IIol. Ba, pueritia, with a horn added. 

Molh. Ba, most silly sheep, with a horn : — 
Yoa hear his learning. 

IIol. Qiti.<t, quis, thou consonant ? 

Moth. The third of tlie five vowels, if you 
repeat them ; or the fifth, if I.- 

IIol. I will repeat them, a, c, i. — 

Moth. The sheep ; the other two concludes 
it; 0, u. 

Arm. Now, by the salt wave of the Mediier- 
raneum, a sweet touch, a quick venew of wit :' 
smip, snap, quick and home; it rejoiceth my 
intellect : true wit. 

Moth. Offer'd by a child to au old man; which 
is wit-old. 

IIol. What is the figure ? what is the figure ? 

Moth. Horns. 

Hoi. Thou disputest like au infant : go, whip 

tiiy gig. 

Moth. Lend me youi- horn to make one, and I 
•vrill whip about your infamy circiim circa; A 
gig of a cuckold's horn ! 

Coat. An I had but one penny in the world, 
thou shouldst have it to buy gingerbread : hold, 
there is the very remuneration I had of thy 
master, thou halfpenny purse of wit, thou 
pigeon-egg of discretion. O, an the heavens 
were so pleased that thou wcrt but my bastard ! 
what a joyful father wouldst th.ou make me ! Go 
to ; thou hast it ad duiifjhiU, at the fingers' ends, 
as they say. 

Hoi. 0, I smell false Latin ; dunghill for 

Arm. Arts-man, praamlula ; we will be sin- 
gled from tlic barbarous. Do you not educate 
youth at the charge-house on the lop of the 
mountain ? 

Hoi. Or, motia, the hill. 

Comedies. — Vol.. I. I 

Arm. At your sweet pleasure, for the moiin- 

IIol. I do, sans question. 

Arm. Sir, it is the king's most sweet pleasure 
and affection, to congratulate the princess at hor 
j)avilion, in the posteriors of this day; which 
the rude multitude call the afternoon. 

IIul. The posterior of the day, most generous 
sir, is liable, congruent, and mcasurahlo for the 
afternoon: llic word is well cuU'd, chose; sweet 
and apt, I do assure you, sir, I do assure. 

Arm. Sir, tlic king is a noble gculhuian; and 
my familiar, I do assure you, very good friend : — 
For what is inward between us, let it pass : — I 
do beseech thee, remember thy conrtscy:* — I 
beseech thee, apparel thy head : — And among 
other importunate and most serious designs, — 
and of great import indeed, too;— but let that 
pass : — for I must tell thco, it will please his 
grace (by the world) sometime to lean upon my 
poor shoulder ; and with his royal finger, thus, 
dally witli my excrement, with my mustachio : 
but, sweet heart, let that pass. ]?y tiic world, I 
recount no fable; some ccrtam special honours 
it pleaseth his greatness to impart to Armado, a 
soldier, a man of travel, that halh seen tlic 
world : but let that pass. — TIic very all of all is, 
— but, sweet heart, I do implore secrecy, — that 
the king would have me present the princess, 
sweet chuck, with some delightful ostentation, or 
show, or pageant, or antic, or fire-work. Now, 
understanding tliat the curate and your sweet 
self arc good at such eruptions, and sudden 
breaking out of mirth, as it were, I have ac- 
quainted you withal, to the end to crave your 

IIol. Sir, you shall present before her the 
nine worthies. — Sir Nathaniel, as concerning 
some entertainment of time, some show in the 
posterior of this day, to be rendered by our 
assistance, — the king's command, and this most 
gallant, illustrate, and learned gentleman, — 
l)cforc the princess ; I say, none so fit as to 
present the nine worthies. 

Nath. Where will you find men worthy enough 
to present them ? 

IIol. Joshua, yourself ; myself, or this gallant 
gentleman, Judas ^Maeeabaius; this swain, bc- 

«■ Rememter thy courlay. Theobald is of opinion the 
passaRC should read — remember not thy courtesy,- that is, 
do not take thy hat ofT. Jackson thinks it should he, re- 
member my courtesy. It ai>pears to us that tlic text is 
risht; and that its construction is— for what is confKlcntial 
between ua, let it pass— notice it not— I do beseech thie, 
remember thy courtesy -remember thy obligation to silence 
asagentleman. Ilolofernesthen bows ; upon which Armado 
says, I bcsecrh thee, apparel thy head ; and then Koes on 
with his contidential communications, which he ('nlshcs by 
saying— Sweet heart, I do implore secrecy. 

Act v.] 


[Scene II. 

cause of bis great limb or joint, shall pass Pom- 
pej the Great ; the page, Hercules, 

Arm. Pardon, sir, error: he is not quantity 
enough for that worthy's thumb : he is not so 
bisr as the end of his club. 

IIol. Shall I liave audience ? he shall present 
Ilercides in minority: his enter and exit shall 
be strangling a snake ; and I will have an apology 
for that pm-pose. 

Moth. An excellent device ! so, if any of the 
audience hiss, you may cry : "Well done, Her- 
cules ! now thou crushest the snake ! that is the 
way to make an offence gracious ; though few 
have the grace to do it. 

Arm. For the rest of the worthies ? — 

Hoi. I will play three myself. 

Iloth. Thrice-worthy gentleman ! 

Arm. Shall I tell you a thing ? 

IIol. We attend. 

Arm. We will have, if this fadge'' not, an 
I beseech you, follow. 

Hoi. Via, goodmau DvJl ! thou hast spoken 
no word all this while. 

Dull. Nor understood none neither, sir. 

Uol. Allans ! we will employ thee. 

Lull. I'll make one in a dance, or so; or I 
vnW. play on the tabor to the worthies, and let 
Ihem dance the hay. 

IIol. Most dull, honest DuU, to our sport, 
away. ^Exeunt. 

SCENE U.— Another part of the same. Be- 
fore the Princess'* Favilion. 

Enter the PnixcEss, Katuakine, Rosaxine, 
and Maria. 

Prin. Sweet hearts, we shall be rich ere we 
If fairings come thus plentifully in : 
A lady wall'd about with diamonds ! 
Look you, what I have from the lovmg king. 
lias. Madam, came nothing else along with 

Prin. Nothing, but this ? yes, as much love 
in rhyme, 
As would be cramm'd up in a sheet of paper, 

n Fadge. This word is from the AnRlo-Saxon feg-nn— 
to join together, nnd thcnco to fit, to acrcc. Sonincr pivcs 
this derivation, and explains. tiiat tilings will not failgc 
when they cannot be brought toRclhtr, S'las to serve to that 
end whereto they arc designed. In Warner's "Albion's 
Unsland," we have this passage, which is quoted in Mr. 
Richardson's valuable Diotionary ; — 

"It hath becnc when as heartic loue 
Did treatc and lie the knot, 
Though now, if gold but lack in graines, 
The wedding fadgelh not." 

Writ on botli sides of the leaf, margcnt and all ; 
That he was fain to seal on Cupid's nfime. 
Bos. That was the way to make his godhead 
For he hath been five thousand years a boy. 
Kath. Ay, and a shrewd unhappy gallows too. 
Bos. You '11 ne'er be friends with hmi ; he 

kill'd your sister. 
Kath. He made her melancholy, sad, and 
heavy ; 
And so she died : had she been light, like you, 
Of such a merry, nimble, stirring spirit, 
She might have been a grandam ere she died : 
And so may you ; for a light heart lives long. 
Bos. What's your dark meaning, mouse, of 

this light word? 
Kath. A light condition in a beauty dark. 
Bos. We need more light to find your mean- 
ing out. 
Kath. You'll mar the light, by taking it in 
TLorefore, I '11 darkly end the argument. 

Bos. Look, what you do ; you do it still i' the 

Kalh. So do not you; for you arc a light 

B.OS. Indeed, I weigh not you; and there- 
fore light. 
Kath. You weigh me not, — 0, that's you 

care not for jne. 
Bos. Great reason ; for, Past cure is still 

past care. 
Prin. Well bandied both; a set of wit"' well 
But Rosaline, you have a favour too : 
Who sent it ? and what is it ? 

Bos. I would, you knew : 

An if my face were but as fair as yours, 
j\Iy favour were as great ; be Avitucss this. 
Nay, I liave verses too, I thank Biron : 
The numbers true ; and, were the nuinb'ring too, 
I were the fairest goddess on (he ground : 
I am compar'd to twenty thousand faii-s. 
O, he hath, drawn my picture in his letter ! 
Prin. Anything hke ? 
Bos. Much, in the letters; nothijig in tlie 

/'/■/;/. Beauteous as ink ; a good conclusion. 
Kath. Fair as a text B in a copy-book. 
Bos. 'Ware pencils! IIo! let me not die 
your debtor. 
My red dominical, my golden letter : 
that your face were not so full of O's ! •= 

n To wax, to grow; as we say, the moon waxeth. 
b Set of wit:— Set is a term used at tennis, 
c llosalinc twits Katharine her face is marked with 
the small pox ; not so is omitted in the folio. 

Act v.] 


[SritNE II. 

Kath. A pox of that jest ! and I bcshrew all 

shrows ! 
Prin. But, Katharine, what was ^cnt to you 

from fair Duniain ? 
Kath. Madam, this glove. 
Pria. Did he not scud you twain ? 

Kath. Yes, madam ; and moreover. 
Some thousand verses of a faithful lover ; 
A huge translation of hypocrisy. 
Vilely compil'd, profound simplicity. 
Mar. This, and these pearls, to me sent Lou- 
gaville ; 
The letter is too long by luUf a mile. 
Frin. I think no less : Dost thou not wish in 
The chain were longer, and the letter short ? 
Mar. Ay, or I would these hands might 

never part. 
Prin. We are wise girls, to mock our lovers so. 
Ros. They are worse fools to purchase mock- 
ing so. 
That same Biron I '11 torture ere I go. 
O, that I knew he were but in by the week ! 
llow I would make him fawn, and beg, and 

seek ; 
And wait the season, and observe the times. 
And spend his prodigal wits in bootless rhymes ; 
And sliape his service wholly to my behests ; ' 
And make him proud to make me proud that 

jests ! 
So portent-like would I o'ersway his state. 
That he should be my fool, and I his fate. 
Prin. None are so surely caught, when they 
are catch'd. 
As wit tum'd fool : folly, in wisdom hatch'd, 
llath wisdom's warrant, and the help of school ; 
And wit's own grace to grace a learned fool. 
Rus. Tlie blood of youth burns not with 
such excess. 
As gravity's revolt to wantonness.'' 

Mar. Folly in fools bears not so strong a note, 
.\s foolery in the wise, when wit doth dote ; 
Since all the power thereof it doth apply, 
To prove, by wit, worth in simplicity. 

Enter Boyet. 

Prin. Uerc comes Boyet, and mirth is in his 

Boj/et. O, I am stabb'd with laughter ! 

Where 's her grace ? 
Prin. Thy news, Boyet ? 

« Behetls. The quarto and fir»t folio lead deriee. The 
correction which is nrce«<ary for the rhyme was made in 
the second folio. In it not he$lt f 

t> This wa« a similar correction by the editor of the second 
folio, instead of teanton'i be. 

I 2 

Boyet. Prepare, madam, jirepare ! — 

i\xm, wenches, arm ! encounters mounted are 
Against your peace : Love doth approach dis- 

Armed in arguments ; you '11 be surpris'd : 
Muster your wits ; stand in your own defence ; 
Or hide your iicads like cowards, and lly hence. 
iV//<. Siiint Dennis to Saint Cupid ! \Miat 

arc they, 
That charge their breath against us ? say, 

scout, say. 
Boyet. Under the cool shade of a sycamore, 
r thought to close mine eyes some half an hour; 
When, lo ! to interrupt my purpos'd rest. 
Toward that shade I might behold address'd 
The king and his companions : warily 
I stole uito a neighbour thicket by, 
And overheard what you shall overhear ; 
That, by and by, disguis'd they will be here. 
Their herald is a pretty knavish page, 
That well by heart hath eonu'd his embassage : 
Action, and accent, did they teach him there ; 
" Thus must thou speak, and thus thy body 

bear : " 
And ever and anon they made a doubt. 
Presence majestical would put him out ; 
"For," quoth the king, "an angel shalt thou sec ; 
Yet fear not thou, but speak audaciously." 
The boy replied, " An angel is not e\nl ; 
I should have fear'd her, had she been a devil." 
With that all laugh'd, and clapp'd him on the 

shoulder ; 
Making the bold wag by their praises bolder. 
One rubb'd his elbow, thus ; and flecr'd, and 

A better speech was never spoke before : 
Another with his finger and his thumb. 
Cried, "Via! we will do 't, come what will 

come : " 
The third he capcr'd and cried, "All goes well;" 
The fourth turn'd on the toe, and down he fell. 
With that, they all did tumble on the ground, 
With such a zealous laughter, so profound, 
That in this spleen ridiculous appears, 
To check their folly, passion's solemn tears. 
Prin. But what, but what, come tliey to visit 

us ? 
Boyet. They do, they do ; and arc apparel'd 

thus, — 
Like Muscovites, or Russians,* as I guess." 
Their purpose is, to parle, to court, and dance : 
^Vnd every one his love-feat will advance 
Unto his several mistress ; which tiiey '11 know 
By favours several, which they did bestow. 

* See Introductory Notice, ?. }i, 


Act v.] 


[Scene II. 

Prin. And will tlicy so ? the gallants shall be 
task'd :— 
For, ladies, we will every one be mask'd ; 
And not a man of them shall have the graec, 
Despite of suit, to see a lady's face. 
Hold, Rosaline, this favour thou shalt wear. 
And then the king will court thee for his dear ; 
Hold, take thou this, my sweet, and give nic 

thine ; 
So shall Biron take me for Rosaline. — 
And change your favoiu's too ; so shall your 

Woo contrary, deceiv'd by these removes. 
Ros. Come on then; wear the favours most 

in sight. 
Kath. But, in this changing, what is your 

intent ? 
Prin. Ttie effect of my intent is, to cross 
theirs : 
They do it but in moeldng merriment ; 
And mock for mock is only my intent. 
Their several counsels they unbosom shall 
To loves mistook ; and so be mock'd Avillial, 
Upon the next occasion that we meet, 
With vasages displayed, to talk and greet. 
lios. But shall we dance, if they desire us to 't? 
Prin. No ; to the death we will not move a 
foot : 
Nor to their pcnn'd speech render we no grace : 
But, while 't is spoke, each turn away her face. 
Boyet. Why, tliat contempt will kill the 
speaker's heart. 
And quite divorce his memory from his part. 
Prin. Therefore I do it; and, I make no 
The rest will ne'er come in, if he be out. 
There's no such sport as sport by sport o'er- 

thrown ; 
To make theirs ours, and ours none but our 

own : 
So shall we stay, mocking intended game ; 
And they, well mock'd, depart away with shame. 

\_TrHmpcts sound within. 

Boj/et. The trumpet sounds ; be mask'd, the 

maskers come. [The ladies mask. 

Enter the KixG, BiRON, Longaville, and Du- 
MAIN, in Russian hahits aud masked; MoTir, 
Musicians and Attendants. 

Moth. "All hail the richest beauties on the 

earth ! " 
Pioyct. Beauties no richer than rich taffata. 
Moth. "A holy parcel of the fairest dames," 
\Thc ladies tjiin their backs to hiw. 

==Tliat ever turn'd their"— backs— "to mortal 
views ! " 
]3iro7i. " Their eyes," villain, " their eyes ! " 
Moth. " That ever turn'd their eyes to mortal 

views ! Out " — 
Boyet. True; 07(t, indeed. 
3hth. " Out of your favours, heavenly spirits, 
Not to beliold "— 

Biro7i. " Once to behold," rogue. 

Moth. "Once to behold with your sun-beame:l 

eyes," "with yom- sun-beamed eyes" — 

Boyet. They will not answer to that epithet. 
You were best call it, daughter-beamed eyes. 
Moth. They do not mark lae, and that brings 

me out. 
Biron. Is this your perfectness ? begone, you 

Ros. What would these strangers ? know 
their minds, Boyet : 
If they do speak our language, 't is oiu- will 
That some plain man recount their purposes : 
Know what they would. 

Boyet. What would you with the princess ? 
Biron. Nothing but peace, and gentle visitation. 
Ros. What woidd they, say they ? _ _ _ 
Boyet. Nothing but peace, and gentle visitation. 
Ros. Why, that they have ; and bid them 

so be gone. 
Boyet. She says, you have it, and you may 

be gone. 
King. Say to her, we have measur'd many 
To tread a measure with her on the grass. 
Boyet. They say that they have measur'd 
many a mile. 
To tread a measure •''with you on this grass. 

Ros. It is not so : ask them how many inches 
Is in one mile : if they have measur'd many. 
The measure then of one is easily told. 

Boyet. If, to come hither you have measur'd 
And many miles, the princess bids you tell. 
How many inches do fill up one mile. 
Biron. Tell her, wc measure then\ by weary 

Boyet. She hears herself. 
Ros. How many weary steps. 

Of many wcaiy miles you have o'crgone, 
Are number'd in the travel of one mile ? 

Biron. AVe number nothing that wc spend for 
vou ; 

.1 Tread a measure. The measure vr.s a prave courtly 
dance, of wliicli the steps ivere slow niul measured, like 
those of a modern minuet. (See Illustrations to llomeo and 
.Tuliet, Act I.) 

Act v.] 


[Scene II. 

Our duty is so ricli, so iufiuitc. 
That we may do it still witliout nccoinpt. 
Vouchsafe to show the sunshine of your face, 
That we, like savages, may worship it. 

Ros. My face is but a moon, and clouded too. 
A7«y. Blessed arc clouds, to do as such clouds 
Vouchsafe, bright moon, and these thy stars, to 

(Those clouds remov'd) upon our watery eync. 

Ros. vain petitioner ! beg a greater matter; 
Thou now rcqucst'st but moonshine in the 
Kin/jf. Then, in our measure, vouchsafe but 
one change : 
Thou bidd'st mc beg ; this begging is not strange. 
Ros. Play, music, then : nay, you must do it 
soon. [Music pl(ii/s. 

Not yet ; — no dance : — thus change I like the 
King. Will you not dance ? How come you 

thus estrang'd ? 
Ros. You took tlie moon at full; but now 

she 's chang'd. 
King. Yet still she is the moon, and I the 
The music plays ; vouchsafe some motion to it. 
Ros. Our cars vouchsafe it. 
King. But your legs should do it. 

Ros. Since you arc strangers, and come here 
by chance. 
We 'U not be nice : tidte hands ; — we will not 
King. Why take we hands then ? 
Ros. Only to part friends : — 

Court'sy, sweet hearts ; and so the measure ends. 
King. More measure of tliis mcasiu'C ; be not 

Ros. Wc can afford no more at such a price. 
King. Prize you yourselves ; W^liat buys your 

company ? 
Ros. Your absence only. 

King. That can never be. 

Ros. Then cannot wc be bought : and so 
Twice to your visor, and half once to you ! 
King. If you deny to dance, let 's hold more 

chat . 
Ros. In private then. 

King. 1 am best pleas'd with that. 

[They converse apart. 
Biron. Wliitc-handcd mistress, one sweet word 

with thee. 
Prin. Honey, and milk, and sugar; there is 

Biron. Nay then, two treys, (an if you grow 
so n ee,) 
Methcglin, wort, and malmsey ; — AA'cU ruiu 

dice ! 
There 's half a dozen sweets. 

Prin. Seventh sweet, adieu. 

Since you c:m cog," I'll play no more with 
Biron. Unc word in secret. 
Prill. Let it not be sweet, 

Biron. Thou griev'st my gall. 
Prin. Gall? bitter. 

Biron. Tliercfure meet. 

[Theg converse apart. 
Dim. Will you vouchsafe with mc to change 

a word ? 
Mar. Name it. 
Bum. Pair ladv, — 

Mar. Say you so ? Pair lord,— 

Take that for yoiu* fair lady. 

Dnm. Please it you, 

.\s much in private, and I '11 bid adieu. 

['I'/ii'g converse apart. 
Kaih. Wliat, was your visor made without a 

tongue ? 
Long. I know the reason, lady, why you ask. 
Kath. 0, for your reason! quickly, sir; I 

Long. You have a double tongue within your 
And would afford my speechless visor half. 
Kalk. Veal, quoth the Dutchman ; — Is not 

veal a calf? 
Long. A calf, fair lady ? 
Kath. No, a fair lord calf. 

LMiig. Let's part the word. 
Kath. No, I '11 not be your half: 

Take all, and wean it ; it may prove an ox. 
Long. Look, how you butt yourself in these 
sharp mocks ! 
AVill you give bonis, chaste lady ? do not so. 
Kath. Then die a calf, before your horus d. 

Long. One word in private with you, ere I 

Kath. Bleat softly then, the butcher hears 
you cry. [T/fj/ converse apart. 

Boget. The tongues of mocking wenches arc 
as keen 
As is the razor's edge invisible. 
Cutting a smaller hair than may be seen ; 
Above the sense of sense : so sensible 

» Biron says, " WcU run, dice!" The Princess s.iys he 
can cog. — To cor the dice is to load them,— and thence, 
gcncroily, to defraud. 


Act v.] 


[Scene U. 

Seemeth their conference ; their conceits have 

Fleeter tliau arrows, bullets, wind, thought, 
swifter things. 
Ros. Not one word more, my maids; break 

off, break off. 
Biron. By lieaven, all dry-beaten with pui-e 

Kmg. Farewell, mad wenches ; you have 
simple wits. 
[Exeioit King, Lords, Moth, Music, and 
Prill. Twenty adieus, my frozen Muscovits. — ■ 
Are these the breed of wits so wondcr'd at ? 
Boi/el. Tapers they arc, \vith your sweet 

breaths puff'd out. 
Ros. Well-liking wits "^ they have ; gross, 

gi'oss; fat, fat. 
Prill. poverty in wit, kingly-poor flout ! 
Will they not, think you, hang themselves to- 
night ? 
Or ever, but in visors, show their faces ? 
This pert Eiron was out of countenance quite. 
Ros. ! they were all in lamentable cases ! 
The king was weeping-ripe for a good word. 
Prin. Biron did swear himself out of all suit. 
Mar. Dumain was at my service, and his 
sword : 
No point}' quoth I ; my servant straight was 
Kath. Lord Longaville said, I came o'er his 
heart ; 
And trow you, what he call'd me ? 

Prin. Qualm, perhaps. 

Kath. Yes, in good faith. 
Prin. Go, sickness as thou art ! 

Rts. Well, better wits have worn plain statute- 
But will you hear ? the king is my love sworn. 
Prin. And quick Biron hath plighted faith 

to me. 
Kath. And Longaville was for my service 

Mar. Dumain is mine as sure as bark on tree. 
Poyd. Madam, and pretty mistresses, give car : 
Immediately they \vill again be here 
In f heir own shapes ; for it can never be. 
They will digest this harsh indignity. 
Prin. Will they return ? 
Boyet. They will, they will, God knows. 

And leap for joy, though they are lame with 
blows : 

n Well-liking is used in the same sense in which the 
vnunR of the wild goats in Job are said to be in good- 

b See note on Aet II. Scene I, 

Therefore, change favours ; and, when they 

Blow like sweet roses in this summer air. 

Pri//. How blow ? how blow ? speak to be 

Boyet. Fair ladies, mask'd, are roses in their 
Dismask'd, theii* damask sweet commixture 

Ai'e angels vailing clouds,* or roses blown. 

Prin. Avaunt, perplexity ! What shall we do, 
If they return in their own shapes to woo ? 

Ros. Good madam, if by me you '11 be advis'd, 
Let's mock them still, as well known, as dis- 

guis'd : 
Let us complain to them what fools were here, 
Disguis'd like Muscovites, in shapeless gear ; 
And wonder what they were ; and to what 

Their shallow shows, and prologue vilely penn'd. 
And their rough carriage so ridiculous. 
Should be presented at our tent to us. 

Boyet. Ladies, withdraw : the gallants are at 

Prin. Wliip to our tents, as roes run over 

[Exeunt Peincess, Ros., Kath., and Mama, 

Kilter the King, Bieon, Longaville, atid Du- 
main, in their proper habits. 

King. Fair sir, God save you ! Wliere is the 

princess ? 
Boyet. Gone to her tent : Please jt your 
Command mc any service to her thither ? 
King. That she vouchsafe me audience for 

one word. 
Boyet. I will ; and so wiU she, I know, my 
lord. [Exit. 

Biron. This fellow peeks up ^vit, as pigeons 
And utters it again when Jove doth please : 
lie is wit's peddler ; and I'ctails his wares 
At wakes, and wasscls, meetings, maikcts, fairs ; 
And we that sell by gross, the Lord doth know. 
Have not the grace to grace it witli such show. 
This gallant pins the wenches on his sleeve ; 
Had he been Adam, he had tempted Eve : 
He can caiTC too, and lisp : Why, this is he. 
That kiss'd away his hand in courtesy ; 
This is the ape of form, monsieur the nice. 
That, when he plays at tables, chides the dice 

•'> To vail — to a vale— to cause to fall down; the clouds 
open as the angels descend. 

^ I'ccks. So tlie quarto: the folio picks. We adopt the 
reading which more distinctly expresses the action of a 
bird with its beak. 

Act V.) 



la honourable terms ; nay, he can sing 
A mean' most meanly ; and, in ushering. 
Mend him who can : the ladies call him, sweet ; 
The stairs, as lie treads on them, ki<s liis feet : 
This is the flower that smiles on every one. 
To show his teeth as white as whales''" bone : 
And consciences, that will not die in debt. 
Pay him the due of honey-tongued Boyet. 
King. A blister on his sweet tongue, with my 
That put Armado's page out of his part ! 

Enter the Prixcess, ushered by Boyet ; BosA- 
LINE, Mauia, Katharine, and Attendants. 

Biron. See where it comes ! — Behavioui*, what 
wert thou. 
Till this man show'd thee ? and what art thou 
now ? 
King. All hail, sweet madam, and fair time 

of day! 
Prin. Fair, in all hail, is foul, as I conceive. 
King. Construe my speeches better, if you 

Prin. Then wish me better, I will give you 

King. "We came to visit you ; and purpose 
To lead you to our court : vouchsafe it then. 
Prin. This field shall hold me ; and so hold 
your vow : 
Nor God, nor I, delights in peijur'd men. 
King. Bebuke me not for that which you 
provoke ; 
The virtue of your eye must break my 
Prin. You nickname virtue : vice you should 
have spoke ; 
For virtue's oflice never breaks men's troth. 
Now, by my maiden honour, yet as pure 

As the unsullied lily, I protest, 
.V world of torments though I should endure, 

I would not yield to be your house's guest : 
So much I hate a breaking-cause to be 
Of heavenly oaths, vow'd with integrity. 
King. O, you have liv'd in desoktion here. 
Unseen, unvisited, much to our shame. 
Prin. Not so, my lord, it is not so, I swear ; 
We have had pastimes here, and i)le;isant 
game ; 
A mess of Bussians left us but of late. 

_ » A mean moil meanly. The mean, in vocal muiic, u an 
intermcdiAte part ; a part — whelher tenor, or second soprano, 
or contra-tenor- between the two extremes of highest and 

>> n hales' bone. The tooth of the walrus. The word 
wknUg' is here a dissyllable. 

King. IIow, madam ? Bussians ? 
Prin. Ay, iu tnith, my lord ; 

Trim gtdlants, full of courtship, and of state. 
Jios, Madam, speak true-.— It is not so, my 
!My lady (to the manner of the days), 
Li courtesy, gives undeserving praise. 
We four, indeed, confronted were with four 
In Bussian habit ; here they staid an hour. 
And talk'd apace ; and in that hour, my lord. 
They did not bless us with one happy word. 
I dare not call them fuub ; but this I think, 
^Vhen they are tliirsty, fools would fain have 
Biron. This jest is dry to me. Gentle sweet. 
Your wit makes ^visc things foolish; when we 

With eyes best seeing heaven's fiery eye, 
By light we lose light : Your capacity 
Is of that nature, that to your huge store 
Wise things seem foolish, and rich things but 
Bos. This proves you wise and rich, for in 

my eye,— 
Biron. I am a fool, and full of poverty. 
Bos. But that you take what doth to you 
It were a fault to snatch words from my tongue. 
Biron. 0, I am yours, and all that I possess. 
Bos. A\[ the fool mine ? 
Biron. I caimot give you less. 

^0*. Wbich of the visors was it that you wore ? 
Biron. Where ? when ? what visor ? why de- 
mand you this ? 
Bos. There, then, that visor ; that superfluous 
That hid the worse, and show'd the better Hicc. 
King. We are descried : tlicy '11 mock us now 

Diim. Let us confess, and turn it to a jest. 
Prin. Anaz'd, my lord ? AVhy looks your 

highness sad ? 
Bos. Ilelp, hold his brows ! he'll swoon! Why 
look you pale ? — 
Sea-sick, I think, coming from !Muscovy. 

Biron. Thus pour the stars dovra plagues for 
Can any face of brass hold longer out ? — 
Here stand I, lady ; dart thy skill at me ; 

Bruise me with scorn, confound me with 
a flout ; 
Thrust thy sharp wit quite through my ignorance ; 

Cut me to pieces with thy keen conceit : 
Aid I will wish thee never more to dance. 
Nor never more in Bussian habit wait- 


Act v.] 


[SCZSE 11. 

! never vrill I trust to speeches penn'd, 

IS'or to the motion of a schoolboy^s tongue : 
Nor never come in visor to mv friend ; 

Xor woo in rhyme, Hke a blind harper's 
song : 
Taffata phrases, silken terms precise, 

Three-pil'd hvperboles, spruce affectatioc,'' 
Figures pedantical; these summer-flies 

Have blown me fall of maggot ostentation : 
I do forswear them : and I here protest. 

By this white glove, (how white the hand, 
God knows I) 
Henceforth my wooing mind shall be express'd 

In russet yeas, and honest kersey noes : 
And, to begin, wench,— so God help me, la I — 
ily love to thee is sound, sans crack or flaw. 
Ros. Sans siJS's, I pray you. 
Biron. Tet I have a trick 

Of the old rage : — bear with me, I am sick ; 
1 '11 leave it by degrees. Soft, let us see ; — 
Write, "Lord have mercy on us,"'' on those 

three ; 
They are infected, in their hearts it lies ; 
They have the plague, and caught it of your eyes : 
These lords are visited ; you are not free. 
For the Lord's tokens on you do I see. 
Frin. 2s o, they are free, that gave these tokens 

to us. 
Biron. Our states are forfeit, seek not to 

undo ns. 
Eoi. It is not so. For how can this be true. 
That you stand forfeit, being those that sue ? 
Biron. Peace ; for I will not have to do with 

Ros. Nor shall not, if I do as I intend. 
Biroi'.. Speak for yourselves, my wit is at an end. 
King. Teach us, sweet madam, for our rude 
Some fair excuse. 

Brin. The fairest is confession. 

Were you not here, but even now, disguis'd ? 
King. Madam, I was. 

Brin. And were you well advis'd ? 

King. I was, fair madam. 
Bnn. "When you then were here. 

What did you whisper in your lady^s ear ? 

alion ; : 

nin» of thU .Vet. O.'. 

i.T the Merry Wives 

ing ; modern editors read ajeci- 

'•.", the same sense in the bepin- 

■ hand, ■we have affectation 

' : — Malone. ■who prefers 

..i^ id liKt 

off -'— ^- --'. stater, •...rcc-; 
bij -pcr-boles, if w 

atT ! has Lmperfec: 

rh, .on. 

■^.rey on ui. The fearful inscription on 
houm visited with the plague. 


King. That more than all the world I did 

respect her. 
Frin. When she shall challenge this, you will 

reject her. 
King. Upon mine honour, no. 
Frin. Peace, peace, forbear ; 

Your oath once broke, you force not to forswear. 
King. Despise me, when I break this oath of 

Frin. 1 will : and therefore keep it : — ^Kosa- 
What did the Russian whisper in your ear ? 
Bos. Madam, he swore that he did hold mc 
As precious eyesight : and did value me 
Above this world : adding thereto, moreover. 
That he would wed me, or else die my lover. 
Frin. God give thee joy of him! the noble 
Most honourably doth uphold his word. 
Kirig. What mean you, madam? by my life, 
my troth, 
I never swore this lady such an oath. 

Bos. By heaven you did; and to confirm it 
You gave me this : but take it, sir, again. 
King. My faith, and this, the princess I did 
I knew her by this jewel on her sleeve. 

Frin. Pardon me, sir, this jewel did she 
-Vnd lord Biron, I thank him, is my dear : — 
"What ; will you have me, or your pearl agaui ? 

Biron. Neither of either ; I remit both twain. 
I see the trick on 't ; — Here was a consent, 
f Knowing aforehand of our merriment,) 
To dash it like a Christmas comedy : 
Some carry-tale, some please-man, some slight 

Some mumble-news, some trencher-knight, some 

That smiles his cheek in years ; " and knows the 

To make my lady laugh, when she 's dispos'd, — 
Told our intents before : which once disclos'd. 
The ladies did change favours ; and then we. 
Following the signs, woo'd but the sign of she. 
Now, to our perjury to add more terror. 
We are again forsworn : in wiU, and error, 

a In years. Malone reads in jeers. We have in Twelfth 
Night, " He doth smile his cheek into more lines than are 
in the new map." The character which Biron gives of 
Boyet is not that of a jeerer; he ii a carry-tale— a please- 
man. The in yean is supposed by Warburton to mean into 
wrinkles. Tieck ingeniously gives an explanation of the 
supposed wrinkles. Boyet 18 neither young nor old, but 
he has smiled so continually, that his cheek, which in 
rsspect of years would ha^e been smooth, has become 
■wrinkled through too much tmillncr. 

Act v.] 


[SctXK II. 

Much upon this it is : — And might not you 


Forestal our sport, to make us thus untrue ? 
Do not you know inv lady's foot by ihe squire," 

And laugh upon the apple of her eye ? 
And stand between her back, sir, and the fire. 

Die when you will, a smock shall be your shroud 
Vou leer upon mo, do you ? there *s an eye. 
Wounds like a Ic-aden sword. 

JJ.y.f. Full merrily 

Hath this brare manage, this career, been ruxu 

Biron, Lo, he is tilting straight I Peace ; I 
have doue- 

EnJer CosTAED. 

"Welcome, pure wit ! thou partest a fair fray. 

Cotf. Lxjrd, sir, they would know, 
Whetlier The iliree wor'' ' " "" ine in, or no. 

JSir-:. What, aretL. ._ -^? 

Cost. No, sir ; but it is vara fine. 

For every one purscnts three. 

Biron, And three times thrice is nine. 

Cost. !Not so, sir; under correction, sir; I 
hope, it is not so : 
You cann ' ' "r, I can assure you, sir : 

V ,. .; we know: 

I hope, sir, three times thrice, sir, — 

Biron, Is not nine. 

Cat. Under correction, sir, we know where- 
until it doth amount. 
Biron. By Jorc, I always took three threes 

for nine. 
Cost. Lord, sir, it were pity you should get 
your living by reckoning, sir. 
Birvti. How much is it ? 
C:fl. O Lord, sir, the parties themselves, the 
actors, sir, will show whereuntil it doth amount : 
for mine own part, I am, as they say, but to 
parfect one man, in one poor man; Pompion 
the great, sir. 

Biron. Art thou one of the worthies ? 
C'ft. It vlcasod the ' ' " ': me worthy of 
Pompion ii.c great : f . . • part, 1 know 

not the dcirrce of the worthy; but 1 am to 
stand for liim. 
Birm. Go, bid them prepare. 
C<aL We will turn it finely off, sir ; we will 
take some care. [Exit Costahd. 

King. Biron, they will shame us, let them not 

» The »euire—etiqii'>'rrr, a rule, or »qn*re. 

b AUew'd, You »« »a »:ioir"d fooL As in TwelJui 

" Tltere is bo Si^ader in id aHoit'd fool." 

BiroH. We are shame-proof, my lord: and 

't is some policy 
To have one show worse than the king's and his 

Kui^. I say, they shall not come. 
Priiu liay, my good lord, let ice o'er^Tile 

That spc ; 5 that doth least know how: 

■Where real strives to content, and the contents 
Die in the Z' " " ' ' ' ts. 

Their form .„. - '. form in 

"When great things la" r birth. 

Biron. A light de^Li.^'.iL^ w . ^^ .-rvrt, my 

Etiier Akmado. 

Jrw. Anointed, I implore so much cipense 
of thv roval sweet breath, as will utter a brace 
of words. 

[Abmado conrerses viih the KlXG, ar,'f ''"i- 
Ten hin a paper. 

Prin. Doth this man serve God ? 

Biron. "Why ask you ? 

Prin. He speaks not like a man of God's 

Jm, That's all one, my fair y 

monarch: for, I protest, the s is 

exceedingly fantastical ; too, too vain ; too, too 

vain ; But we will put it, as they say, Xofortvna 

-' '' crra. I wish you the peace of mind, 

;J couplement ! [Erii Akkado. 

KiJt^. Here is like to be a good presence of 
worthies: He presents Hector of Troy: the 
swain, Pompey the great; the parish curate, 
Alexander; Armado's page, Hercules; tic 
pedant, Judas Vi. s. 

And if these fom » i. iiiies in their first show 

These four will chan^ habits, and present the 
otl ^ 

Biron, T"L > e in the first show. 

Kh:j. You are decciv'd, 't is not so. 

Biron, The I ' ' -riggart, the hcdgc- 

,-■-- • .I . r,n1 - — 

TJl. *.*-fcJ v* 11... iw- ■ . 

w at novum ; ' and the whole world 
Cannot prick out five such, take each one in his 
Kin^. The ship is under sail, and here she 
oomcs amain. 
[SeaU hrovgUfor the KlXG, Pbixcess, .ff. 

» Ala:' 
dice, of V 
Binm tbercXar 
nine,— aad the 


Act V.l 



Pageant of the NiTie Worthies? 

Enter Costard, armed, for Pompey. 

Cost, " I Pompey am," 

Bo^et. You lie, you are not he. 

Cost. " I Pompey am," 

JSoyet. With libbard's ^ head ou knee. 

Biron.. Well said, old mocker ; I must needs 
be friends with thee. 

Cost. "I Pompey am, Pompey surnam'd the 

Dum. The gre?,t. 

Cost. It is great, sir; — "Pompey surnam'd 
the great ; 
That oft in field, with targe and shield, did make 

my foe to sweat : 
And travelling along this coast, I here am come 

by chance ; 
And lay my arms before the legs of this sweet 

lass of France." 
If your ladyship would say, "Thanks, Pompey," 
I had done. 
Frin. Great thanks, great Pompey. 
Cost. 'T is not so much worth ; but, I hope, I 
was perfect : I made a little fault in "great." 

liiroH. My hat to a halfpenny, Pompey proves 
the best worthy. 

Enter Nathaniel, armed, for Alexander. 

Nath. " When in the world I liv'd, I was the 
world's commander ; 
By cast, west, north, and south, I spread my 

conquering might : 
My 'scutcheon plain declares that I am Ali- 
Hqyet. Your nose says, no, you are not; for 

it stands too right. 
Biron. Your nose smells, no, in this, most 

tender-smelling knight. 
Frin. The conqueror is dismay'd : Proceed, 

good Alexander. 
Nath. "When in the world I liv'd, I was the 

world's commander; " — 
lioi/ct. Most true, 'tis right; you were so, 

Biron. Pompey the great, — 
Cost. Your servant, and Costard. 

Biron. Take away the conqueror, take away 


Cost. 0, sir, [to Nath.] you have ovcrtlirown 

Alisander the conqueror ! You will be scraped 

out of the painted cloth for tliis : your lion, that 

holds his poU-ax sitting on a close stool, 'svill be 

« iiJtarJ— leopard. 


given to A-jax : he vnH be the ninth worthy. A 
conqueror, and afeard to speak! run away for 
shame, Alisander. [Nath. retires.'] There, au't 
shall please you ; a foolish mdd man ; an honest 
man, look you, and soon dash'd ! He is a mar- 
vellous good neighboiu", in sooth; and a very 
good bowler : ^ but, for Alisander, alas, you see 
how 't is ; — a little o'erparted : *— But there are 
worthies a coming will speak then- mind in some 
other sort. 

Frin. Stand aside, good Pompey. 

Enter Holofeunes /o;- Judas, and Mots for 

Hoi. "Great Hercules is presented by this 
Whose club kiU'd Cerebenis, that three- 
headed canns ; 
And, when he was a babe, a child, a shrimp. 

Thus did he strangle seipents in his manus : 
Quoniam, he seemeth in minority ; 
Ergo, I come with this apology." — 
Keep some state in thy e.rii, and vanish. 

[]\IoTH retires. 
IIol. "Judas, I am," — 
Dim. A Judas ! 
Hoi. Not Iscariot, sir, — 
" Judas, I am, ycleped Machabseus." 

Dim. Judas Machabajus clipt, is plain Judas. 
Biron. A kissing traitor: — How art thou 

prov'd Judas ? 
Hoi. " Judas, I am," — 
Dim. The more shame for you, Judas. 
Hoi. What mean you, sir ? 
Boi/et. To make Judas hang himself. 
Hoi. Begin, sir ; you are my elder. 
Biron. Well foUow'd: Judas was hang'd on 

an elder.'' 
Hoi. I ^^^ll not be put out of countenance. 
Biron. Because thou hast no face. 
Hoi. What is this ? 
Boyet. A cittern-head. *= 
Dum. The head of a bodkin. 
Biron. A death's face in a ring. 
Long. The face of an old lloman coin, scarce 

Boyet. The pummel of Caesar's faulchion. 
Dum. The carv'd-bone face on a flask.** 

i> o'erparted — overparted, not quite equal to his part. 

l> The common tradition was that Judas hanged himself 
on an elder-tree. Thus, in Ben Jonson's " Every Man out 
of his Humour," " He shall be your JTudas, and you shall 
be his elder-tree to hang on." 

c A ciltcrn-hend. It appears from several passages m 
the old dramas, tliat the head of a cittern, gittern, or guitar, 
was terminated with a face. 

d Flask. A soldier's powder horn, which was often ela- 
borately carved. 

Act V.) 


[Scsvs II. 

Biion. St. George's balf-cbcck in a broocb. 

Dim. Ay, ami in a broocb of lead. 

Biroii. Ay, aiul worn iu tbe cap of a tootb- 

And now, forward; for we bave put tbce iu 

Ho/. You bavc put me out of countcn.nnce. 
Biroii. False : we bavc given tbce faces. 
Hoi. Dut you bave out-fac'd tbcm all. 
Biron. An tbou wcrt a lion, we would do so. 
Boyel. Tbercforc, as be is an ass, let bim go. 
And so adieu, sweet Jude! nay, wby dost tbou 

Dttm. For tbe latter end of bis name. 
Biron. For tbe ass to tbe Jude ; give it bim : 

— Jud-as, away. 
Hoi. Tbis is not generous; not gentle; not 

Boyet. A ligbt for monsieur Judas : it grows 

dark, be may stumble. 
PrtH. Alas, poor Macbabffius, bow batb be 

been baited ! 

Enter Armado, armed, for Hector. 

Biron. Hide tby bead, Acbilles ; bcre comes 
Hector in arms. 

Diim. Though my mocks come home by me, 
I will now be merry. 

King. Hector was but aTrojan inrespect of this. 

Boyel. But is this Hector ? 

Dum. I think Hector was not so clcan-tiin- 

Long. His leg b too big for Hector. 

/>■;;. More calf, certain. 

J)>,yct. No ; be is best indued in tbe small. 

Biron. Tliis cannot be Hector. 

Dum. He's a god or a painter; for he makes 

Arm. "Tbe arraipotcnt Mars, of lances the 
Gave Hector a gift," — 

Dum. A gilt nutmeg. 

Biron. A lemon. 

Long. Stuck with cloves. 

Dum. No, cloven. 

Arm. Peace ! 
" Tbe armipotcnt Mars, of lances tbe almighty. 
Gave Hector a gift, the bcir of Ilion : 

A man so breath "d, that certain he would 
fight, yea. 
From mom till night, out of bis pavUion. 
I am that flower," — 

Dum. Tbat mint. 

L)ng. Tliat columbine. 

Arm. Sweet lord Longaville, rein tby tongue. 

Long. I must rather give it the rein, for it 
runs against Hector. 

Dum. Ay, and Hector's a greyhound. 

Ann. The sweet war- man is dead and rotten; 
sweet chucks, beat not tbe bones of the buried : 
when be breath'd, be was a man — But I will 
forward with my device : Sweet royalty, [/o (he 
PkinxessJ bestow on me tbe sense of bearing. 
[BliioN whispers Costaud. 

Prin. Speak, bnivc Hector : we arc much 

Arm. 1 do adore tby sweet grace's sbpper. 

Boyet. Loves her by tbe foot. 

Dum. He may not by the yard. 

Arm. "Tbis Hector far surmounted Hanni- 

Cost. The party is gone, fellow Hector, she 
is gone ; she is two months on her way. 

Arm. Wliat meanest thou ? 

Cost. Faith, unless you play the honest Tro- 
jan, the poor wench is cast away : she 's quick ; 
the child brags in her belly already ; 't is yours. 

Arm. Dost thou infamonizc me among poten- 
tates ? tbou shult die. 

Cost. Then shall Hector be whipped, for 
Jaquenetta that is quick by him ; and hanged, 
for Pompey tbat b dead by bim. 

Dum. Most rare Pompey ! 

Boyet. Renowned Pompey ! 

Biron. Greater than great, great, great, great 
Pompey ! Pompey, the huge ! 

Dum. Hector trembles. 

Biron. Pompey is moved : — More Atcs, more 
Atcs ; stir them on ! stir tbcm on ! 

Dum. Hector will challenge bim. 

Biron. Ay, if he bavc no more man's blood 
in 's belly than will sup a flea. 

Arm. By the north pole, I do challenge thee. 

Cost. I will not fight with a pole, like a 
northern man ; * 1 '11 sksb ; I '11 do it by the 
sword: — I pray you, let me borrow my arms 

Dum. Room for the incensed worthies. 

Cost. I'll do it in my shirt. 

Dum. Most resolute Pompey ! 

Moth. Master, let me take you a button-bole 
lower. Do you not sec, Pompey is uncasing 
for the combat ? What mean you ? you will 
lose your reputation. 

Arm. Gentlemen, and soldiers, pardon me ; 
I will not combat in my shirt. 

Bum. You may not deny it ; Pompey hath 
made the challenge. 

Arm. Sweet blood.", I Iroth may and will. 

Biron. What reason bavc you for 't ? 


Act v.] 


[Scene II. 

Am. The naked truth of it is, I have no shirt; 
T go woolward for pcuauce.* 

Boyet. Tnic, aud it was cnjoin'd him in 
Rome for want of linen: since when, I'll be 
sworn, he wore none but a dishclout of Jacquc- 
netta's ; and that 'a wears next liis heart, for a 

Enter Mekcade. 

Mer. God save you, madam ! 

Prin. Welcome, IMercade ; 
But that thou intcrrupt'st our merriment. 

Mcr. I am sony, madam; for tlie news I 
Is heavy in my tongue. The king, your fatlicr— 

Prin. Dead, for my life. 

Mer. Even so ; my talc is told. 

Biron. "Wortliics, away ; the scene begins to 

Arm. For mme owl. part, I breathe free 
breath : I have seen the day of wrong through 
the little hole of discretion, and I moII right my- 
seK like a soldier. {E.reunt WoriJdes. 

King. How fares your majesty ? 

Prin. Boyet, prepare ; I will away to-uight. 

King. Madam, not so; I do beseech you, stay. 

Prin. Prepare, I say. — I thank you, gracious 
For all your fair endeavours ; and entreat. 
Out of a new-sad so\il, that you vouchsafe 
In your rich wisdom, to excuse, or hide, 
The liberal opposition of our spirits : 
If over-boldly we have bonie ourselves 
In the converse of breath, your gentleness 
Was guilty of it.— Farewell, worthy lord ! 
A heavy heart bears not a nimble'' tongue : 
Excuse me so, coming so short of thanks 
For my great suit so easily obtaiu'd. 

King. The extreme part of time extremely 
All causes to the purpose of his speed ; 
And often, at his very loose, decides 
That whicli long process could not arbitrate : 
And though the niouming brow of progeny 
Forbid the smiling co\irtcsy of love, 
The holy suit whicli fain it would convince ; 
Yet, since love's argument was first on foot. 
Let not the cloud of sorrow justle it 
From what it purpos'd ; since, to wail friends 

Is not by much so wholesome, profitable, 
As to rejoice at friends but newly found. 

» jronlwarti, wanting the shirt, so as to leave the irooUen 
cloth of the outer coat next tlit- skin. 

b //umft/c in old editions. Theobald reads nimft/c, which 
is now generally accepted. 

c This is Mr. Dyce's reading: old copies l\ti\e parts. 

Prin. I understand you uot; ray griefs arc 

Biron. Honest plain words best pierce the ear 
of grief; — 
Aud by these badges understand the king. 
For your fair sakes have we neglected time ; 
Play'd foul play with our oaths. Your beauty, 

Hath nuich deform' d us, fashioning our hu- 
Even to the opposed end of our intents : 
And what in us hath secm'd ridiculous, — 
As love is full of unbefitting strains ; 
All wanton as a child, skipping, and vain ; 
Form'd by the eye, and, therefore, like the eye 
Full of strays shapes, of habits, and of forms. 
Varying in subjects as the eye doth roll 
To every varied object in his glance : 
Which party-coated presence of loose love 
Put on by us, if, in your heavenly eyes, 
Have misbecom'd our oaths aud gravities, 
Those heavenly eyes, that look into these faults, 
Suggested us to make : Therefore, ladies. 
Our love being yours, the error that love 

Is likewise yours : we to ourselves prove false, 
■ By being once false for ever to be true 
'To those that make us both, — fair ladies, you : 
And even that falsehood, in itself a sin. 
Thus purifies itself, and turns to grace. 

Prin. We have receiv'd your letters, fuU of 
love ; 
Your favours, the embassadors of love ; 
And, in our maiden council, rated them 
At coui'tship, pleasant jest, and courtesy, 
As bombast,'' and as lining to the time : 
But more devout than this, iu our respects, 
Have we not been ; aud therefore met your loves 
In their own fashion, like a merriment. 

JJ/ciii. Our letters, madam, show'd much more 

than jest. 
Long. So did our looks. 
Bos. We did not quote them so. 

King. Now, at the latest mmutc of the hour. 
Grant us your loves. 

Prin. A time, methinks, too short 

To make a world-^vithout■end bargain in : 
No, no, my lord, your grace is perjiu-'d much. 
Full of dear guiltiness ; and, therefore this, — 
If for my love (as there is no such cause) 
You wiU do aught, this shall you do for me : 
Your oath I ■will not trust ; but go with speed 
To some forlorn and naked hermitage, 

a Full of slrni/ shapes. The old copies read straying; 
the modern strange. Coleridge suggested strai/. 
!> BomlfQsl, from bombagia, cotton-wool used as stuffing. 

Act v.] 


[SCESE 11. 

Remote from all the pleasures of tlic world ; 
There stay, luitil the twelve celestial signs 
Have 1)rought about tlicir annual reckoning: 
If this austere iiisociablc lilc 
Change not your offer made in heat of blood ; 
If frosts, and fasts, hard lodging, and thin weeds, 
Nip not the gaudy blossoms of your love, 
Bui that it bear this trial, and last love; 
Then, at the expiration of the year. 
Come challenge, challenge me by these deserts, 
And, by tliis virgin pahn. now kissing thine, 
I will be thine ; and, till that instant, shut 
My woeful self up in a mourning house; 
Raining the tears of lamentation 
For the reineml)ranee of my father's death. 
If this thou do deny, let our hands part ; 
Neither iutitled in the other's heart. 

King. If this, or more than this, I would deny, 
To flatter up these powers of mine with rest, 
The sudden hand of death close up mine eye ! 
Hence ever then my heart is in thy breast. 
Biron. iVnd what to me, my love ? and what 

to me ? * 
Dum. But what to me, my love? but what 

to me ? 
Kaih. A wife! — .\. beard, fair health, and 
honesty ; 
With three-fold love I wish you all these three. 
Bum. 0, shall I say, I thank you, gentle wife ? 
Kath. Not so, my lord;— a twelvemonth and 
a day 
[ 'U mark no words that smooth-fae'd wooers say : 
Come when the king doth to my lady come. 
Then, if I have much love, I '11 give you some. 
Bum. I'll serve thee true and faithfully till 

Kath. Yet swear not, lest you be forsworn 

Long. What says Maria ? 
Mar. At the twelvemonth's end, 

I '11 change my black gown for a faithful friend. 
Long. I '11 stay with patieacc ; but tlic time is 

» The following lines here occur in all the old editioni : — 
" Roi. You must be purged too, your sing are rank ; 
Yon «ri? sftnint with faults and perjury; 
Thcr > fa\-our mean to get, 

A t'> ■■ you spcm!, nnd never rest, 

But if. K ;:■• v^.i:* beds of people sick." 
There can be no doubt, we think, that Rosaliiie's speech 

should be oir.i" ' ■•'!'• i. f- « -v. .if -... ..„.wer to his 

question. Tl, s answer 

being so beau;;: . , . ' -,''^<-'ch, we 

have little doubt that the»e h ve lines did occur in the oriKinal 
plajr, and were not 5trurk out of the copy when it was "aug- 
mented and amended." The theory stands upon a dilTerent 
in'ound from Biron's oratorir.-\I repetition*, in the fourth .\ct. 
Coleridge differs from Warljurton a.* to the propriety of 
omitting Iliron's question. He says — " It is quite in Biron's 
character; and Ilotalinc not answering it immediately, 
Dumain takes up the question. 

Mar. The liker you ; few taller are so young. 
liiron. Studies my lady ? mistress, look on me, 
Behold the window of my heart, mine eye, 
AVhat humble suit attcmls thy answer there; 
Impose some service on me for thy love. 

Tlos. Oft have I heard of you, my lord Biron, 
Before I saw you: and the world's large tongue 
Pi-oelaims you for a man replete with mocks ; 
Fiul of comparisons and wounding flouts ; 
Which you on all estates will execute, 
That lie within tlie mercy of your wit : 
To weed this wormwood from your fruitfvd 

And, therewithal, to win me, if you plcjusc, 
(Without the which I am not to be won,) 
You shidl this twelvemonth term from day to 

Visit the speechless sick, and still converse 
With groaning wretches ; and your task shall 

With all the fierce endeavour of your wit. 
To enforce the pained impotent to smile. 

Biron. To move wild laughter in the throat 

of death? 
It cannot be ; it is impossible : 
Mirth cannot move a soul in agony. 

Bos. Why, that's the way to choke a gibing 

\M»ose influence is begot of that loose grace 
Which shallow laughing hearers give to fools 
A jest's prosperity lies in the ear 
Of him that hears it, never in the tongue 
Of him that makes it : then, if sickly ears, 
Deaf'd with the clamours of their own dear 

Will hear your idle scorns, continue them,' 
And I will have you, and tliat fault withal ; 
But, if they will not, throw away that spirit, 
And I shall find you empty of that fault. 
Right joyful of your reformation. 

Biron. A twelvemonth ? well, befal what will 

I'll jest a twelvemonth in an hospital. 

Trin. Ay, sweet my lord; anil so I take my 

leave. \To the King. 

King. No, madam, we will bring you on your 

Biron. Our wooing doth not end like an old 

play ; 

Jack hath not Jill : these ladies' courtesy 
Might well have made our sport a comedy. 

King. Come, sir, it wants a twelvemonth and 
a day, 
.Vnd then 't will end. 

Biron. Tliat 's too long for a pby. 

« r/upi— Mr. Dyce's correction of Iken. 


ACT v.] 



Enter Armado. 

Arm. Sweet majesty, vouchsafe mc, — 

Prin. Was not that Hector ? 

Dum. The worthy knight of Troy. 

Arm. I will kiss thy royal finger, and take 
leave : I am a votary ; I have vowed to Ja- 
quenetta to hold the plough for her sweet 
love three years. But, most esteemed great- 
ness, ■\\'ill you hear the dialogue that the two 
learned men have compiled, in praise of the 
owl and the cuckoo ? it should have followed in 
the end of our show. 

King. Call them forth quickly, wc will do so. 

Arm. Holla! approach. 

Enter Holofernes, Nathaniel, Moth, Cos- 
TAUD, and others. 

This side is Hiems, winter ; This Vcr, the spring ; 
the one maintained by the owl, the other by the 
cuckoo. Vcr, begin. 



Spring. Wlien daisies ined, and violets blue, 
And lady-smocks all silver-white, 
And cuckoo-buds of yellow hue. 

Do paint the meadows with delight. 
The cuckoo then, on every tree, 
Mocks married men, for thus sings he, 

Cuckoo ; 
Cuckoo, cuckoo, — O word of fear, 
Unpleasinp to a married eal! 


\Vlien shepherds pipe on oaten straws. 
And merry larks are ploughmen's clocks. 

When turtles tread, and rooks, and daws. 
And maidens bleach their summer smocks. 

The cuckoo then, on every tree. 

Mocks married men, for thus sings he, 

Cuckoo, cuckoo, — O word of fear, 

Unpleasing to a married ear! 

Winter. When icicles hang by the wall. 

And Dick the shepherd blows his nail. 
And Tom bears logs into the hall. 

And milk comes frozen home in pail. 
When blood is nipp'd, and ways be foul. 
Then nightly sings the staring owl, 

To-whit, tu-who, a merry note. 
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot. 

When all aloud the wind doth blow. 

And coughing drowns the parson's saw, 
.Vnd birds sit brooding in the snow. 

And Marion's nose looks red and raw. 
When roasted crabs hiss in the bowl. 
Then nightly sings the staring owl, 

To-who ; 
To-whit, to-who, a merry note. 
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot. 

Arm. The words of Mercury arc harsh after 
the songs of Apollo. You, that way ; we, this 
way. \_Exeunt. 



' Scene I. — "ITononJicahUitudinitatibus." 

Taylor, the waterpoet, has given us a syllable 
more of this delight of schoolboys — honorincicabi- 
litudinitatibus. But he h;V3 not equalled Ribelais, 
who has thus furnished the title of a book that 
might puzzle Paternoster liow : — Antijiericatume- 

' Scene I.—"neJ!/tk, !/ 1." 

The pedant asks who is the silly sheep — quis, 
quis ? " The third of the five vowels if you repeat 
them," says Moth ; and the pedant does repeat 
them — a, e, I ; the other two clinches it, says 
Moth, o, u (O you). This may appear a poor 
conundrum, and a low conceit, as Theobald has 
it, but the s;\tii-e is in opposing the pedantry of 
the boy to the pedantry of the man, and making 
the pedant have the worst of it in what he c;dls 
" a quick venew of wit." 

» Scene I.—" Venew ofvnt." 

Steevens and Malone fiercely contradict each 
other ;u? to the meaning of the word renew. " The 
cut-andthrust notes on this occasion exhibit a 
complete match between the two great Shaksperian 
mai.-iters of defence," says Douce. This industrious 
commentator gives us five pages to determine the 
controversy ; the arjjument of which amounts to 
this, that venew .and bout equiUly denote a hit in 

* Scene II. — " .1 nd are appareWd thin,— 

Like Muscoi-itcs, or linssians." 

For the Russian or Muscovite habits a.«3umed by 
the king and nobles of Navarre, we are indebted 
to Yecellio. At page 303 of the edition of 1598, 
we find a noble Muscovite whose attire sufficiently 
corresponds with that described by Hall in his 
account of a Ru.ssian masque at Westminster, in 
the reign of Henry VIII., quoted by Kitson in 
illustration of this i)lay. 

" In the first year of King Henry VIII.," says 
the chronicler, " at a banquet made for the foreign 
ambassadors in the Parliament-chamber at West- 
minster, came the Lord Henry Earl of Wiltshire, 
and the Loi-d Fitzwalter, in two long gowns of 
yellow satin traversed with white s;itiu, and in 
every bend • of white was a bend of crimson 
8;itin, after the fiushion of Russia or Russland, 
with furred hats of grey on their heads, either 
of them having an hatchet in their hands, and 
boots with pikes tm-ned up." The boots in V&- 
cellio's print have no " pikes turned up," but we 
pex'ceive the " lonj^ gown " of figured satin or 
damask, and the " furred hat." At pa^e 283 of 
the same work we are presented also with the 
habit of the Grand Duke of Muscovy, a rich and 
imposing costume which might be worn by his 
majesty of Navarro himself. 

• By bend is meant a broad diagonal stripe. It i» an 
heraldic term, and constantly used in the description of 
dresses by writers of the middle ages. 


» Scene II. — " Better wiia fiave worn plain statute- 

By an act of parliament of 1571, it was provided 
that ;dl above the age of six years, except the 
n^jbility and other persons of degree, should, on 
sabbathniays and holidays, wear caps of wool. 

manufactured in England. This was one of tlic 
laws for the encouragement of trade, which so 
occupied the legislatorial wisdom of our ancestors, 
and which the people, as constantly as they were 
enacted, evaded, or openly violatctl. This very 
law was repealed in 1597. Those to whom the 
law applied, and wore the statute-caps, were citi- 



zens, and artificers, and labourers ; and thus, as 
the uobility continued to wear their bonnets and 
feathers, llosaliue says, "better %vits have iwni plain 
statute caps." 

^ Scene II. — " You cannot heg us." 

Costard means to say we are not idiots. One of 
the most abominable corruptions of tlie feudal 
system of government was for the sovereign, who 
was the legal guardian of idiots, to grant the 
wardship of such an iinliappy person to some 
favourite, gi-anting with the idiot the right of 
using his property, Ritson, and Douce more 
correctly, give a curious anecdote illustrative of 
this custom, and of its abuse : — 

"The Lord North begg'd old Bladwell for a 
foole (though he could never prove him so), and 
having him in his custodie as a lunaticke, he ' 
carried him to a gentleman's house, one day, that 
was his neighbour. The L. North and the gen- 
tleman retir'd awhile to private discourse, and 
left Bladwell in the dining-roome, which was hung 

with a faire hanging ; Bladwell walking up and 
downe, and viewing the imagerie, spyed a foole 
at last in the hanging, and without delay drawes 
his knife, flyes at the foole, cutts him cleane out, 
and layes him on the floore ; my Lord and the 
gentleman coming in againe, and finding the 
tapestrie thus defac'd, he ask'd Bladwell what 
he meant by such a rude uncivill act; he an- 
swered, Sii", be content, I have rather done you 
a courtesie than a wrong, for, if ever my L. N. 
had scene the foole there he would have begg'd 
him, and so you might have lost your whole 
suite." (Harl. MS. G395.) 

" Scene II. — "Pageant of the nine worthies." 
The genuine worthies of the old pagennt were 
Joshua, David, Judas Maccabeus, Hector, Alex- 
ander, Julius Cffisar, Arthur, Charlemagne, and 
Godfrey of BuUoigne. Sometimes Guy of War- 
wick was substituted for Godfrey of BuUoigne. 
These redoubted personages, according to a manu- 
script in the British Museum (Harl. 2057), were 
clad in complete armour, with crowns of gold 
on their heads, every one having his esquire to 
bear before hiui his shield and pennon at arms. 
According to this manuscript, these " Lords " 
were dressed as three Hebrews, three Infidels, 
and three Christians. Shakspere overthrew the 
j ust proportion of age and country, for he gives us 
four infidels, Plector, Pompey, Alexander, and 
Hercules, out of the five of the schoolmaster's 
pageant.' In the MS. of the Har-leian Collection, 
which is a Chester pageant, with illuminations, 
the Four Seasons conclude the repi-esentation of 
the Nine Worthies. Shakspere must have seen 
such an exhibition, and have thence derived the 
songs of Ver and Riems. 



»ScENK II.— '-^ very good bowler." 

The precctlini,' engraviug of the bowls of the six- 
tecDth century ia designed from Strutt's ' Sports 
and Pastime.^.' The sport, according to Strutt, 
appears to have prevailed in the fourteenth cen- 
tury, for he has given U3 figures of three persons 
engaged in bowling, from a manuscriptof that date. 

9 ScEXE IT.—-' / tcitl not pjht with a pole, lile a 
northern /mm." 

The old quarter-staff play of England was uioat 
practised in the north. Strutt, in liia ' Sports,' 
and Ritson, in his ' llobin Hood Poems/ have 
given U3 representations of these loving contests, 
from which the following engraving haa been 

"Scr.\E II.—" When daisies pied." 

The first two stanzas of this sonsj are set to 
music by Dr. Anio, with all that justucss of con- 
ceptiuu and aimplo elegance of which he was so 
great a master, and which ax"e conspicuous in 
nearly all of hia compositions that are in union 

with Shakspere'a worda. The eon.:^ having been 
" married'' to music, it would not be well to dis- 
turb the received reading. Yet the deviations 
fr.Jiu all the original copies must be noted. 
There U a transposition in the first four lines, to 
meet the alternate rhymes in the subsequent 
verses. In the original we find : — 

" When d.iiaies pitd, and violets blue, 
And cuckou-btids of yellow hue, 
And lady sinockB all silver-while. 
Do paint the meadows with delight." 

In the third and fourth verses, 

" To who" 

is a modern introduction to correspond with 
" Cuckoo; " but " To-who" alone is not the song 
of the owl— it is " Tu-whit, U^-who." The original 
lines stand thus : — 

" Then nightly sings the staring owl, 
Tu-whit, to-who, 
A merry note." 

Did not the origiuid music vary with the vaiying 
form of the metre * 



Comedies.— Vol , I. K 

^=^ ---^:r*|!-.,, ,.v~' 11./ 


Charles Lamb was wont to call Love's Labour 's Lost the Comedy of Leisure, 
iu the commonwealth of King Fei'diuand of Navarre we have, 

'Tis certain that 

" all men idle, all ; 
And women too." 

The courtiers, in their pursuit of "that angel knowledge," waste their time in subtle contentions, 
how that angel is to be won ; — the ladies from Fi'ance spread their pavilions in the sunny park, 
and there keep iip their round of jokes with their "wit's peddler," Boyet, "the nice;" — Armado 
listens to his page while he warbles " Coucolinel ; " — Jaquenetta, though she is " allowed for the 
dey," seems to have no dairy to look after; — Costard acts as if he were neither ploughman nor 
Bwineherd, and born for no other work than to laugh for ever at Moth, and, in the excess of his 
love for that " pathetical nit," to exclaim, " An I had but one penny in the world, thou shouldst have 
it to buy gingerbread ; " — the schoolmaster appears to be without scholars, the curate without a 
cure, the constable without watch and ward. There is, indeed, one parenthesis of real business 
connected with the progi'ess of the action — the difference between France and Navarre, in the 
matter of Aquitain. But the settlement of this business is deferred till " to-morrow " — the " packet 
of specialities " is not come ; and whether Aquitain goes back to France, or the hundred thousand 
crowns return to Navarre, we never learn. This matter, then, being postponed till a more fitting 
season, the whole set abandon themselves to what Dr. Johnson calls " strenuous idleness." The 
king and his courtiers forswear their studies, and evciy man becomes a lover and a sonnetteer; — 
the refined traveller of Spain resigns himself to his passion for the dairy-maid ; the schoolmaster 
and the curate talk learnedly after dinner ; and, at last, the king, the nobles, the priest, the pedant, 
the braggart, the page, and the clown, join in one dance of mummery, in which they all laugh, and are 
laughed at. But still all this idleness is too energetic to warrant us in calling this the Comedy of 
Leisure. Let us try again. Is it not the Comedy of Affectations ? 

Moli6re, in his ' PrtScieuses Ridicules,' has admirably hit off one affectation that had found its 
way into the private life of his own times. The ladies aspired to be wooed after the fashion of the 
Grand Cyrus. Madelon will be called Polix6ne, and Cathos Amiute. They dismiss their plain 


Loueat lovers, because marriage ought to be at the cud of the romance, atnl not at the beginning. 
They dote upon Slascai-ille (the disguised lacquey) wheu he assures them " Les gons de qualit6 
savent tout sans avoir jamaia rien appris." They are in ecstasies at everything. Miulelon is 
" furieusement pour les poi-traits;" — Cathos loves " terriblement les ^nigmes." Even Masovrillo's 
ribbon is "furieusement bien choisi;" — his gloves " sentent terriblement bons;" — and his feathers 
are " effroyablemeut belles." But in the 'PrCoieuses Ilidicules,' Molibre, as we have said, dealt with 
one affectation ; — in Love's Labour 's Lost Shakspere presents us almost every variety of affectation 
that is founded upon a misdirection of intellectual activity. Wo have here many of the forms 
in which cleverness is exhibited as opposed to wisdom, and false refinement as opposed to simplicity. 
The affected characters, even the most fiintastical, are not fools ; but, at the same time, the natural 
characters, who, in this play, are chiefly the women, have their intellectual foibles. All the modes of 
affectation are developed in one continued stream of fun and drollery ; — every one is laughing at the 
folly of the other, and the laugh grows louder and louder as the more natural characters, one by one, 
trip up the heels of the more affected. The most affected at last join in the laugh with the 
most natural; and the whole comes down to "plain kersey yea and nay," — from the syntjix of 
Holofemes, and the " firenew words " of Armado, to " greasy Joan," and " roasted crabs." — Let us 
hastily review the comedy imder this aspect. 

The affectation of the King and his courtiers begins at the very beginning of the play. The 
mistake upon which they set out, in their desire to make their Court "a little academe," is not an 
uncommon one. It is the attempt to separate the contemplative from the active life ; to forego 
duties for abstractions; to sacrifice innocent pleasures for plans of mortification, diflScult to be 
executed, and useless if carried through. Jlany a young student has been haunted by the same 
dream ; and he only required to be living in an age when vows bound mankind to objects of i)ur8uit 
that now present but the ludicrous side, to have had his dreams converted into very silly realities. 
The resistance of Biron to the vow of his fellows is singularly able, — his reasonbg is deep and true, 
and ought to have turned them aside from their folly : — 

"Study is like the heaven's glorious sun, 

That will not be deep-search'd with saucy looks ; 
Small have continual plodders ever won, 
Save base authority from others' books." 

But the vow is ratified, and its abjuration will only be the result of its practical inconvenience. The 
" French king's daughter," the " admired princess," is coming to confer with the King and his 
Court, who have resolved to talk with no woman for three years : 

" So study evermore is overshot." 

But the "child of fancy" appears — the "fantastic" — the "magnificent" — the "man of great 
spirit who grows melancholy " — he who " is ill at reckoning because it fitteth the spirit of a 
tapster " — he who confesses to be a " gentleman and a gamester," because " both are the varnish 
of a complete man." How capitally does Moth, his page, hit him off, when ho intimates that only 
" the base vulgar " call deuce-ace three ! And yet this indolent piece of refinement ia 

" A man in all the world's new Tashions pK-uited, 
That hath a mint of phrases in his brain," 

and he himself has no mean idea of his abilities — he is " for whole volumes in folio." Moth, who 
continually draws him out to laugh at him, is an embryo wag, whose common sense ia constantly 
opposed to his master's affectations ; and Costard is another cunning bit of nature, though cast 
in a coarser mould, whose heart runs over with joy at the tricks of hia little friend, this " nit of 

The Princess and jer train arrive at Navarre. We have already learnt to like the King and 
his lords, and have seen their fine natures shining through the affectations by which they are 
clouded. We scarcely require, therefore, to hear their eulogies delivered from the mouths of the 
Princess's ladies, who have appreciated their real worth. Biron, however, has all along been our 
favourite ; and we feel that, in some degree, he deserves the character which Rosaline gives him : — 



. — — — " A merrier man, 

Within the limit of becoming mirth, 
I never spent an liour's talk withal : 
His eye begets occasion for his wit ; 
For every object that the one doth catch, 
Tlie other turns to a mirth-moving jest ; 
Which his fair tongue (conceit's expositor! 
Delivers in such apt and gracious words, 
riiat aged ears play truant at his tales. 
And younger hearings are quite ravished ; 
So sweet and voluble is his discourse." 

But, with all this disposition to think highly of the nobles of the self-denying Court, the "mad 
wenches" of France are determined to use their "civil war of wits," on "Navarre and his hook- 
men," for their absurd vows; and well do they keep their determination. Boyet is a capital 
courtier, always ready for a gibe at the ladies, and always ready to bear their gibes. Costard thinks 
he is "a most simple clown ;" but Biron more accurately describes him at length : — 

" Why, this is he, 

That kiss'd away his hand in courtesy : 
This is the ape of form, monsieur the nice, 
That, when he plays at tables, chides the dice 
In honourable terms ; nay, he can sing 
A mean most meanly ; and, in ushering, 
Mend him who can : the ladies call him, sweet; 
The stairs, as lie treads on them, kiss his feet." 

We are very much temjited to think that, in his character of Boyet, Shakspere had in view that 
most amusing coxcomb Master Robert Laneham, whose letter from Kenilworth, in which he gives 
the following account of himself, was printed in 1575 : — "Always among the gentlewomen with my 
good will, and when I see company according, then I can be as lively too. Sometimes I foot it 
with dancing ; now with my gittern and else' with my cittern ; then at the virginals ; ye know 
nothing comes amiss to me ; then carol I up a song withal, that by and bj' they come flocking about 
me like bees to honey, and ever they cry, 'Another, good Laneham, another.' " 

Before the end of Navarre's first inteiwiew with the Princess, Boj'et has discovered that he is 
"infected." At the end of the next Act we learn from Biron himself that he is in the same 
condition. Away then goes the vow with the King and Biron. . In the fourth Act we find that 
the infection has spread to all the lords; but the love of the King and his courtiers is thoroughly 
characteristic. It may be sincere enough, but it is still love fantastical. — It hath taught Biron " to 
rhyme and to be melancholy." The King drops his paper of poesy ; Longaville reads his sonnet, 
which makes " flesh a deity ; " and Dumain, in his most beautiful anacreontic, — as sweet a piece 
of music ns Shakspere ever penned, — .shows "how love can vary wit." The scene in which each 
lover is detected by the other, and all laughed at by Bu-on, till he is detected himself, is thoroughly 
dramatic ; and there is perhaps nothing finer in the whole range of the Shaksperian comedy than 
the passage where Biron casts aside his disguises, and rises to the height of poetry and eloquence. 
The burst when the " rent lines " discover " some love " of Biron is incomparably fine : — 

" Who sees the heavenly Rosaline, 

That, like a rude and savage man of Inde, 

At the first opening of the gorgeous cast. 
Bows not his vassal head; and, struckcn blind, , 

Kisses the base ground with obedient breast ? ' 

Tlic furaous speech of Biron, which follows, is perhaps unmatched as a display of poetical rhetoric, 
except by the speeches of Ulysses to Achilles in the thu-d Act of Troilus and Cressida. Coleridge 
ha.s admirably described this speech of Biron. " It is logic clotlicd in rhetoric ; — but observe how 
Shakspere, in his two-fold being of poet and philosopher, avails himself of it to convey profound 
truths in the most lively images, — the whole remaining faithful to the character supposed to utter 
the lines, and the expressions themselves constituting a further development of that character."* 
The rhetoric of Biron i^roduces its eOect. " Now to plain dealing," says Longaville ; but Biron, the 

* Liierary Ucmains, vol. ii., p. 105 


n;orTy man whoso love is still half fun, is for more circuitous modes than hxyiug ihe'u henilii at tlio 
.'eet of their mistresses. He is of opinion that 

" Revels, dances, masks, ami merry hours, 
Fore-run fair Love," 

ami ho tht.'i-oforo recommends " some strange pastime " to solace the dames. But " the g.-xlhuits 
will be task'd." 

King and Princosd, lonls and Indies, must make way for tho great pedants. The foitn of 
affectation is now entirely changed. It is not tho clovemesa of rising superior to all other men hy 
despising the "affects" to which every man is born; — it is not the clevernoHs of labouring at the 
njost magnificent phrases to e.xpres.'i the most common ideas ; — but it is the clevorncHs of two persons 
using conventional terms, which they have picked up from a common source, and whiclx tliey be- 
lieve sealed to the mass of mankind, instead of employing tho ordinai-y colloquial phrases by which 
ideas are rendered intelligible. This is pedantry — and Shakspere shows his excellent judj,'nient in 
bringing a brace of pedants upon the scene. In O'lveefe's ' Agrce;iblo Surprise,' and in Colman's 
' Heir at Law,' wo have a single pedant, — tho one talking Latin to a milk-maid, and tho other to a 
tallow-chandler. This is farce. But the pedantry of Holoferues and tho curate is comedy. Tliey 
each address the other in their freemasonry of learning. They each flatter the other. But for 
the rest of the world they look down upon them. " Sir," saith the curate, excusing the " twice-sod 
simplicity" of Goodman Dull, " he hath never fed of the dainties that are bred iu a book ; he hath 
not eat paper, as it were ; he hath not drunk ink : his intellect is not replenished." But Goodman 
Dull has his intellect stimulated by this abuse. He has heai-d tho riddles of the " iuk-hoin " men, 
and he sports a riddle of his own : — 

" Vou two are bookmen : Can you tell by your wit, 
What was a month old at Cain's birth, that's not five weeks old as yet ? " 

Tl»o answer of Holofemes is tho very quintessence of pedantry. He gives Goodman Dull the 
hardest name for the moon in tho mj-thologj'. Goodman Dull is with difficulty ijuieted. Holo- 
femes then exhibits his poetry ; and he " will something affect tho letter, for it argues facility." 
Ho produces, as all pedants attempt to produce, not what is good when executed, but what is 
difficult of execution. Siitisfied with his own performances — ' the gift .is good in those in whom it 
is acute, and I am thankful for it " — ho is profuse in his contempt for other men's productions. 
He undertakes to prove Biron's canzonet " to be very unlearned, neither savouring of poetry, wit, 
nor invention." The portrait is two hundred yeai-s old, and yet how many of the present day 
might sit f )r it I Holofemes, however, is not meant by Shakspere for a blockhead. He is made of 
better stuff tLin tho ordinary run of those who " educate youth at the charge-house." Shakspere 
has taken care that wo should see flashes of good sense amidst his folly. To suy nothing of the 
curate's commendations of his " reasons at dinner," we have his own description of Armado, to 
show how clearly he could discover tho ludicrous side of others. The pedant can see tho ridiculous 
in pedantry of another st<\mp. But tho poet also takes care that the ridiculous side of " the two 
learned men" shall still be prominent. Sloth and Costard are again brought upon the scene to 
laugh at those who " have been at a great feast of languages, and have stolen the scrajis." Costanl 
himself is growing affected. Ho has picked up the fashion vi being clever, aud he has himself 
stolen honoriJicabilitudiniUUibiu out of "tho alms-basket of words." But business proceeds: — 
Holofemes will present before tho Prince-ss the nine worthies, and ho will play three himself. The 
soul of tho schoolma-stcr is in this magnificent device ; and he looks duwu with most self-satisfied 
pity on honest Dull, who has spoken no word, and understood none. 

The ladies have received verses and jewels from their lovers ; but they trust not to tho verses — 
they think thera "bootless rhymes," the effusions of " prodigal wits : " — 

" Folly in TooU bears not so strong a note. 
As foolery in the wise." 

When Boyet discloses to the Princess the scheme of the of Muscovites, ebe is more confinnc.1 
in her determination to laugh at tho laughers : — 

" They do it but in mocking merriment ; 
And mock for mock is only my intent " 



The affectation of "speeches penn'd" is overthrown in a moment by the shrewdness of the women, 

who encounter the fustian harangue with prosaic action. Moth comes in crammed with others' 

affectations : — 

'■ All hail, the richest beauties on the earth ! 
A holy parcel of the fairest dames " — 

The ladies turn their backs on him — 

" That ever turn'd their — backs — to mortal views ! " 

Biron in vain gives him the cue — " their e^es, villain, their eyes!" — "the pigeon-egg of discretion" 
has ceased to be discreet — he is out, and the speech is ended. The masl<ers will try for themselves. 
They each take a masked lady apart, and each finds a wrong mistress, who has no sympathy with him. 
The keen breath of " mocking wenches " has puffed out all their fine conceits : — 

" AVell, better wits have worn plain statute-caps." 

The sharp medicine has had its effect. The King and hi.? lords return without their disguises ; and, 
being doomed to hear the echo of the laugh at their folly, they come down from their stilts to the 
level ground of common sense : — from " taffata phrases " and " figures pedantical " to 

" Russet yeas, and honest kersey noes." 

But the worthies are coming ; we have not yet done with the affectations and the mocking 
merriment. Biron maliciously desires " to have one show worse than the king's and his company." 
Those who have been laughed at now take to laughing at others. Costard, who is the most natural 
of the worthies, comes off with the fewest hurts. He has performed Pompey marvellously well, 
and he is not a little vain of his performance — "I hope I was perfect." When the learned curate 
breaks down as Alexander, the apology of Costard for his overthrow is inimitable : " There, an't 
shall please you ; a foolish mild man ; an honest man, look you, and soon dash'd ! He is a mar- 
vellous good neighbour in sooth, and a very good bowler ; but, for Alisander, alas ! you see how 
't is ; a little o'erparted." Holofernes comes off worse than the curate — " Alas, poor Machabseus 
how hath he been baited ! " Wc feel, in spite of our inclination to laugh at the j^edant, that his 
remonstrance is just — '"This is not generous, not gentle, not humble." We know that to be 
generous, to be gentle, to be humble, are the especial virtues of the great ; and Shakspere makes \is 
ECO that the schoolmaster is right. Lastly, comes Armado. His discomfiture is still more signal. 
The malicious trick that Biron suggests to Costard shows that Rosaline's original praise of him was 
not altogether deserved — that his merriment was not always 

" Within the limit of becoming mirth." 

The affectations of Biron are cast aside, but he has a natural fault to correct, worse than any affecta- 
tion ; and beautifully does Rosaline hold up to him the glass which shows him how 

" to choke a gibing spirit. 
Whose influence is begot of that loose grace 
Which shallow laughing hearers give to fools." 

The affectations are blown into thin air. The King and his courtiers have to turn from specula- 
ti(m to action — from fruitless vows to deeds of charity and piety. Armado is about to apply to 
what is useful ; " I have vowed to Jaquenetta to hold the plough for her sweet love three years." 
The voices of the pedants are heard no more in scraps of Latin. — They are no longer " singled from 
the barbarous." — But, on the contrary, " the dialogue that the two learned men have compiled, in 
praise of the owl and the cuckoo," is full of the most familiar images, expressed in the most 
homely language. Shakspere, unquestionably, to our minds, brought in this most characteristic 
song — (a song that he might have written and sung in the chimney-corner of his fatlier's own 
kitchen, long before he dreamt of having a play acted before Queen Elizabeth)— to mark, by an 
emphatic close, the triumph of simplicity over false refinement. 








ir j^ 



W^ -.W,^ 


[Part of Windsor Castle, built in the time of Elizabeth.] 


State of the Text, and Chronology, op The Merry Wives op Windsor. 

Thb first edition of this play was published in 1602, under the following title : ' A most 
pleasaunt and excellent conceited Comedy of Sir John Falstaffe, and the Merry Wives of Windsor. 
EntermLsed with sundrie variable and pleasing humors of Sir Hugh the Welch Knight, Justice 
Shallow, and hia wise Cousin M. Slender. With the swaggering vaine of Ancient Pistoll and 
Corporal! 'Sym.. By William Shakespeare. As it hath bene divers times acted by the Right 
Honourable my Lord Chamfcerlaines Servants; Both before her Majestie and else where. London: 
Printed by T. C. for Arthur Johnson,' &c. &c. 1602. The same copy was reprinted in 1619. 
The comedy as it now stands first appeared in the folio of 1 623 ; and the play in that edition contains 
very nearly twice the number of lines that the quarto contains. The succession of scenes is 
the same in both copies, except in one instance ; but the speeches of the several characters are 
greatly elaborated in the amended copy, and several of the characters not only heightened, but new 
distinctive features given to them. For example, the Slender of the present comedy — one of the 
most perfect of the minor characters of Shakspure— is a very inferior conception in the first copy. 
Our Slender has been worked up out of the first rough sketch, with touches at once delicate and 
powerfuL Again, the Justice Shallow of the quarto is an amusing person — but he is not the present 
Shallow ; we have not even the repetitions which identify him with the Shallow of Henry IV. We 
point out these matters here, for the purpose of shewing that, although the quarto of 1602 was most 
probably piratically published when the play had been re-modelled, and was reprinted without 
alteration in 1619 (the amended copy then remaining unpublished), the copy of that first edition 
must not be considered as an imperfect transcript of the complete play. The difierences between the 
two copies are produced by the alterations of the author working upon his first sketch. The extent of 
these changes and elaborations can only be satisfactorily perceived by comparing the two copies, scene 
by scene. We have given a few examples in our foot-notes ; and we here subjoin the scene at Heme's 
Oak, which has no doubt been completely re-written : — 



aUAIlTO OP 1602. 

Qui. You fairies that do haunt these shady groves 
Look round about the wood if you can spy 
A mortal that doth haunt our sacred round : 
If such a one you can espy, give him his due, 
And leave not till you pinch him black and blue. 
Give tliem their charge. Puck, ere they pnrt away. 

Sir Hugh. Come hither, Peane, go to the country liouses. 
And when you find a slut that lies asleep. 
And :ill her dishes foul, and room unswcpt, 
^Vitli your long nails pinch her till she cry. 
And swear to mend lier sluttisli housewifery. 

Fat. I warrant you, I will perform your will. 

Hit. Where's Pead? Go and see where brokers sleep. 
And fox-eyed Serjeants, with their mace, 
Go lay the proctors i-; the street. 
And pinch the lousy Serjeant's face : 
Spare none of these when tli' are a bed, 
IJut such whose nose looks blue and red. 

Qui. Away, begone, his mind fulfil. 
And look that none of you stand still. 
Some do that thing, some do this, 
All do something, none amiss. 

Sir Hugh. I smell a man of middle earth. 

I'al. God bless me from that Welch fairy. 

Qm/c. Look every one about this round, 
And if that any here be found, 
For his presumption in this place. 
Spare neither leg, arm, head, nor face. 

.Sir Hugh. See I have spied one by good luck, 
Hi« body man, his head a buck. 

Fat. God send me good fortune now, and I care not. 

Quick. Go strait, and do as I command, 
And take a taper in your hand. 
And set it to his fingers' ends, 
And if you see it him oflTends, 
.•\nd that he starteth at the flame, 
Then he is mortal, know liis name : 
If with an F it doth begin. 
Why tlien be sure he's full of sin. 
About it then, and know the truth, 
Of this same metamorphosed youth. 

.Sir Hugh. Give me the tapers, I will try 
And if that lie love venerv. 

FOLIO OP 1623. 

Quick. Fairies, black, grey, green, and white 
You moonshine-revellers, and shades of night, 
You orphan-heirs of fixed destiny. 
Attend your office and your quality. 
Crier Hobgoblin, make the fairy oyes. 

Pist. Elves, list your names ; silence, you airy toys. 
Cricket, to Windsor chiranies shalt thou leap : 
Where fires thou find'st unrak'd, and heartlis unswept, 
There pinch the maids as blue as bilberry : 
Our radiant queen hates sluts and slultery. 

Fal. They are fairies ; he that speaks to them shall die : 
I'll wink and couch: no man their works must eye. 

[Lies down upon his face. 

Eva. Wliere's Pede? — Go you, and where you find a 
That, crc she sleep, has thrice her prayers said, 
Raise up the organs of her fantasy. 
Sleep she as sound as careless infancy ; 
Jiut those as sleep and think not on their sins, 
Pinch them, arms, legs, backs, shoulders, sides, and sliins. 

Quick. About, .ibout ; 
Search Windsor castle, elves, within and out : 
Strew good luck, cuphes, on every sacred room ; 
That it may stand till the perpetual doom. 
In state as wholesome, as in state 'tis fit ; 
Worthy the owner, and the owner it. 
The several chairs of order look you scour 
AVith juice of balm, and every precious fiowcr: 
Each fair instalment, coat, and several crest. 
With loyal blazon, evermore be blest! 
And nightly, meadow-fairies, look you sing. 
Like to the Garter's compass, in a ring: 
Tlie expressure that it bears green let it be, 
More fertile-fresh than all the field to see ; 
And, Jlomj soil qni mal y pciisc, writC; 
In emerald tufts, flowers purple, blue, and white : 
Like sapphire, pearl, and rich embroidery. 
Buckled below fair knight-hood's bending knee : 
Fairies use flowers for their charactery. 
.Away; disperse: But, till 'tis one o'clock. 
Our dance of custom, round about the oak 
Of Heme the Hunter let us not forget. 

Eta. Pray you, lock hand in hand; yourselves in ordei 
set : 
And twenty glow-worms shall our lanterns be. 
To guide our measure round about the tree. 
Hut, stay : I smell a man of middle earth. 

Fal. Heavens defend me from that Welch fairy ! 
Lest he transform me to a piece of cheese ! 

Pist, Vild worm, thou wast o'crlookcd even in thy 

Qui(k. With trial-fire touch me his finger end 
if lie be chaste, the flame will back descend 
And turn him to no pain ; but if he start, 
It is the flesh of a corrupted heart. 

Pisl. A trial, come. 

Eva. Come, will this wood take fire ? 

[They burn him with their takers. 

Fal. Oh, oh, oh ! 

Quick. Corrupt, corrupt, and tainted in desire ! 
About him, fairies ; sing a scornful rhyme ; 
And, as you trip, still pinch him to your time. 

The quarto copy of the Merry Wives of Windsor beiug so completely different from the amended 
play, affords little as.sistance in the settlement of the text. Indeed, following the folio of 1623, 
there are very few real difficulties. Modern editors appear to us to have gone beyond their proper line 
of duty in "rescuing" lines from the quarto which the author had manifestly by other 
pas.sages. AVe have, for the most part, rejected these restorations, as they are called, but have given 
the passages in our foot-notes. 

But, if the quarto is not to be taken as a guide in the formation of a te.xt, it appears to us 
140 ' 

>rEKRY wm<:s of Windsor. 

viewed in connexion with some circumstances which we shall venture to point out as heretofore 
in some degi-ee unregarded, to be a highly interesting literary curiosity. 

Malone, contrary to his opinion with regni-d to the quarto edition of Henry V., says of the 
quarto of the Merry Wives of Windsor, "The old edition in 1C02, like that of Romeo and Juliet, 
is apparently a rough draught, and not a miitilated or imperfect copy." His view, therefore, of the 
period when this play w;i.s written, applies to the "rough di-aught." Malone's opinion of the date 
of this Sketch is thus stated in his ' Chronological Order :' — 

" The following line in the earliest edition of this comedy, 

' Sail like my pinnace to those golden shores,' 

shews that it was written after Sir Walter Raleigh's return from Guiana in 1596. 

" The fii-st sketch of the Merry Wives of Windsor was printed in 1602. It was entered in the 
books of the Stationers' Company on the ISth of January, 1601-2, and was therefore probably 
written in 1601, after the two parts of King Henry IV., being, it is said, composed at the de.sire of 
Queen Elizabeth, in order to exhibit FalstafT in love, when all the pleasantry which ho could aflord 
in any other situation was exhausted. But it may not be thought so clear that it was written after 
King Henry Y. Nym and Bardolph are both hanged in King Henry V., yet appear in The Merry 
Wives of Windsor. Falstaff is disgraced in the Second Part of King Henry IV., and dies in King 
Henry V. ; but, in the Meriy Wives of Windsor, he talks as if he were yet in favour at court : ' If 
it should come to the ear of the court how I have been transformed,' &c. : ^nd Mr. Page 
discountenances Fenton's addresses to his daughter because he ' kept company with the wild prince 
and with Poiutz.' These circumstances seem to favour the supposition that this play was written 
between the First and Second Parts of King Henry IV. But that it was not written then, may be 
collected from the tradition above mentioned. The truth, I believe, i.-*, that though it ought to be 
read (.as Dr. Johuson has observed) between the Second Part of King Henry IV. and King 
Henry V., it was written after King Henry V., and after Shakspere had killed FalstafiF. In 
obedience to the royal commands, having revived him, he found it necessary at the same time to 
revive all tho.?e persons with whom ho was wont to be exhibited, Xym, Pistol, Bardolph, and the 
Page : and disposed of them as he found it convenient, without a strict regard to their situations, or 
catastrophes in former plays." 

The opinion that this comedy was written after the two parts of Henry IV. is not quite in 
consonance with the tradition that Queen Elizabeth desired to see FalstafF in love ; for Shakspero 
might have given this turn to the character in Henry V., after the announcement in the Epilogue 
to the second Part of Henry IV. — " our humble author will continue the story, with Sir John in it.' 
Malone's theory, therefore, that it was produced after Henry V., is in accordance with the tradition 
as received by him with such an implicit belief. George Chalmers, however, in his ' Supplemental 
Apology,' laughs at the tradition, and at Malone's theory. He believes that the three historical 
plays and the comedy were successively written in 1596, and in 1597, but that Henry V. was 
produced the last. He says " In it (Henry V.) Falstafif does not come out upon the stage, but 
dies of a sweat, after performing less than the attentive auditors were led to expect : and in it, 
ancient Pistol appears as the husband of Mistress Quickly ; who also dies, during the ancient's absence 
in the wars of France. Yet do the commentators bring the knight to life, and revive and unmany 
the dame, by assigning the year 1601 aa the epoch of the Merry Wives of Windsor. Queen 
Elizabeth is said by the critics to have commanded these miracles to be worked in 1601, — a time 
when she was in no proper mood for such fooleries. The tradition on which is founded the story 
of Elizabeth's command to exhibit the facetious knight in love, I think too improbable for belief." 
Chalmers goes on to argue that after Falstaff's disgrace at the end of the second Part of Henry IV. 
(which is followed in Henry V. by the assertion that " the King has killed his heart ") he was not 
in a fit condition for "a speedy appearance amongst the Merry Wives of Windsor;" and further, 
that if it be true, as the first Act of the second Part evinces, that Sir John, soon aftor doing good 
service at Shrewsbury, was sent off, with some charge, to Lord John of Lancaster at York, he could 
not consistently saunter to Windsor, after his rencounter with the Chief Justice." Looking at these 
contradictions, Chalmers places "the true epoch of this comedy in 1596," and affirms "that its 
proper place is before tlie first Part of Henry IV." We had been strongly impressed with the 
same opinion before we seen the passage in ChiUmers, which is not given under his view of the 


chronology of ' The Merry Wives of WlDclsor.' But we are quite aware that the theory is at first 
sight open to objection : though it is clearly not so objectionable as Malone's assertion that 
Shakspere revived his dead Falstaff, Quickly, Xym, and Bardolph ; and it perhaps gets rid of the 
difficulties which belong to Dr. Johnson's opinion that " the present play ought to be read between 
Henry IV. and Henry V." The question, altogether, appears to us very interesting as a piece of 
literary history ; and wo therefore request the indulgence of our readers whilst we examine it some- 
what in detail. 

And first, of the tradition upon which Malonn builds. Dennis, in an epistle prefixed to 'the 
Comical Gallant,' an alteration of this play which he published in 1702, says, — " This Comedy was 
written at her (Queen Elizabeth's) command, and by her direction, and she was so eager to see it 
acted that she commanded it to be finished in fourteen days ; and was afterwards, as tradition tells 
us, very well pleased at the representation." The tradition, however, soon became more circum- 
stantial ; for Rowe and Pope and Theobald each inform us that Elizabeth was so well pleased %cith 
the Falstaff of the two Parts of Henry IV., that she commanded a play to be written by Shakspere 
in which he should shew the Knight in Love. Malone considers that the tradition, as given by 
Dennis, came to him from Drydeu, who received it from Davenant. The more circumstantial tradition 
was furnished by Gildon, who published it in his 'Remarks on Shakspeare's Plays,' in 1710. The 
tradition, as stated by Dennis, is not inconsistent with the belief that the Merry Wives of Windsor (of 
course we spesik of the Sketch) was produced hefore the two Parts of Henry IV. The more circum- 
stantial tradition is comiDletely reconcilable only with Malone's theory, that Shakspere, continuing 
the comic characters of the Historical Plays in the Merry Wives of Windsor, ventured upon the daring 
experiment of reviving the dead. 

Malone, according to his theory, believes that the Sketch of the Merry Wives of Windsor, 
"finished in fourteen days," was written in 1601; Chalmers that it was written in 1596. We are 
inclined to think that the period of the production of the original Sketch might have been even 
earlier than 159G. 

Raleigh returned from his expedition to Guiana in 1596, having sailed in 1595. In the present 
text of the Merry Wives (Act I., Sc. III.) Falstaff says, " Here 's another letter to her : she bears 
the purse too ; she is a region in Gitiana, all gold and bounty. I will be cheater to them both, and 
they shall be exchequers to me : they shall be my East and West Indies." In the original Sketch 
the passage stands thus : " Here is another letter to her ; she bears the purse too. They shall be 
exchequers to me and I'll be cheaters to them both. They shall be my East and West Indies." In 
the amended text we have, subsequently, 

" Sail like my pinnace to those golden shores ; " 

which line is found in the quarto, the being in the place of those. This line alone is taken by 
Malone to shew that the Comedy, in its first unfinished state, "was written after Sir Walter 
Raleigh's return from Guiana in 1596." Sui'cly this is not precise enough. Golden shores were 
spoken of metaphorically before Raleigh's voyage ; but the region in Guiana is a very difierent 
indication. To our minds it shews that the Sketch was written hefore Raleigh's return ; — the 
finished play after Guiana was known and talked of. 

' The Fairy Queen ' of Spenser was published in 1596. " The whole plot," says Chalmers, 
" which was laid by Mrs. P.age, to be executed at the hour of fairy revel, around Heme's Oak, by 
urchins, ouphes, and fairies, green and white, was plainly an allusion to the Fairy Queen of 1596, 
which for some time after its publication was the imivcrsal talk." A general mention of fairies and 
fairy revels might naturally occur without any allusion to Spenser ; and thus in the original Sketch 
v/e have only such a general mention. But in the amended copy of the folio the Fairy Queen is 
presented to the audience three times as a familiar name. If these passages may be taken to 
allude to * The Fairy Queen ' of Spenser, we have another proof (as far as such proof can go) 
that the original Sketch, in which they do not occur, was written before 1696. 

Again, in FalstalTa address to the Merry Wives at Heme's Oak, we have — " Let the sky rain 
potatoes, . . . and snow eringoes." The words potatoes and eringoes are in Lodge'g ' Devils Incarnate,' 
1596 ; — but they are not found in the original sketch of this Comedy. 

Whatever may be the date of the original Sketch, there can be no doubt, we think, that the 
play, as we have received it from the folio of 1623, was enlarged and revived after the production 


of Henry IV. Some would assign this revival to the time of James I. The passages which indicate 
this, according to Malouo and Chalmers, are those in which Falstaff says "You'll complain of me 
to the King,^'—t\io word being Council in the quai-to : " those Knights will hack ; "—(See Act II. 
Scene I.) Mrs. Quickly's allusion to Coaches (See Illustration) ; the poetical description of the 
insignia of the Garter ; and the mention of the " Cotsall " games. But as not one of these passages 
is found in the original quarto, tho question of the date of the sketch remains untouched by them. 
The exact date is of very littlo importance, because we do not know the exact dates of tho two 
Parts of Henry IV. But, before we leave this branch of the subject we may briefly notice a matter 
which is in itself curious, and hitherto unnoticed. 

In the origin.-\l Sketch we have the following passage : — 

" Doctor. Where be my host de gartir? 
Host. O, here sir, in perplexity. 
Doctor. I cannot tell vat be dad, 
But be-gar I will tell you von ting. 
Derc be a Germane duke come to de court 
Has cosened all the hosts of Brdinford 
And Redding." 

In the folio the passage stands thus : 

" Caius. Vere is mine Host dc Jarlerre? 

Host Here, master doctor, in perplexity and doubtful dilemma. 

Caius. 1 cannot tell vat is dat : but it is tell ame, dat you make grand preparation for a Juke di; Jarmanij ; by my trot, derc 
\i no duke dat de court is know to come." 

In tho original Sketch wo have the story of tho " cozenage " of my Host of tho Garter, by some 
Germans, who pretended to be of the retinue of a German Duke. Now, if we knew that a real 
German Duke had visited Windsor — (a rare occurrence in the days of Elizabeth) we should have 
the date of tho comedy pretty exactly fixed. The circumstance would be one of those local and 
temporary allu.sions which Shak-spere seized upon to arrest the attention of his audience. In 1592^ 
a German Duke did visit Windsor. We had access, through the kindness of Mr. T. Rodd, to a narrative 
printed in the old German language, of the journey to England of the Duke of Wiirtemberg, in 
1592, which narrative, drawn up by his Secretaiy, contains a daily journal of his proceedings. He 
was accompanied by a considerable retinue, and travelled under the name of "the Count 

The title of this work may be translated as follows : — 

' A short and true description of the bathing journey * which his Serene Highness tho Right Hon- 
ourable Prince and Lord Frederick, Duke of Wurtcmburg, and Teck, Count of Miimpelgart, Lord 
(Baron) of Heidenheim, Knight of the two ancient royal orders of St. Michael, in France, and of 
the Garter, in England, &c., &c., lately performed, in the year 1592, from Miimpelgart, into the 
celebrated kingdom of England, afterwards returning through the Netherlands, until his arrival 
again at Miimpelgart. Noted down from day to day in the briefest manner, by your Princely 
Grace's gracious command, by your fellow-traveller and Private Secretary. Printed at Tiibingen, 
by Erhardo Cellio, in 1602.' 

This curiotiu volume contains a sort of passport from Lord Howard, addressed to all Justices 
of Peace, Mayors, and Bailifis, which we give without correction of the orthography : — 

" Theras this nobleman, Counto Mombeliard, is to passe ouer Contrye in England, in to the 
lowe Countryes, Thise schal be to wil and command you in hcer Majte. name for such, and is heer 
pleasure to see him foumissed with post horses in his trauail to the sea side, and there to soecke up 
such schippinge as echalbe fit for his transportations, lie pay no'liing for tJic same, for wich tis schalbe 
your BuflBcient waiTante boo see that your faile noth thereof at your perilles. From BiQeetc, the 2 
uf September, 1592. Your friend, C. Howard." 

The " German duke " visited Windsor ; was shewn " the splendidly beautiful and royal castle ; " 

• The Author, in an addre'JS to the reader, explains that this title, though it may appear strange, as only one bathing-place 
is visited, has heen adopted, because as in the " usual bathing-journeys it is common to assemble toijether, as well all sorts of 
strange persons out of foreign places and nations, as known friend s and sick people, even so in the deicription of this baihing- 
louniey will be found all sorts of curious things, and strange (marvellous) histories." 



huuted in the *• parks full of fallow-deer and other game ; " heard the music of an organ, and of 
other instruments, with the voices of little boys, as well as a sermon an hour long, in a church 
covered with lead ; and, after staying two days, departed for Hampton Court.* His grace and his 
suite must have caused a sensation at Windsor. Probably mine Host of the Garter had really made 
" grand preparation for a Duke de Jarmany ; " — at any rate he would believe Bardolph's story, — 
" the Germans desire to have three of your horses." Was there any dispute about the ultimate 
payment for the Duke's horses, for which he was " to pay nothing ? " Was my host out of his 
reckoning when he said " they shall have my horses, but I '11 make them pay ? " We have little 
doubt that the passages which relate to the German Duke (all of which with slight alteration, are in 
the original sketch,) have reference to the Duke of Wiirtemburg's visit to Windsor in 1592, — a 
matter to be forgotten in 1601, when Malone says the sketch wag written ; and somewhat stale in 
1596, which Chalmers assigns as its date. 

We now proceed to the more interesting point — was the Merry Wives cf Windsor produced, 
either after the first Part of Henry IV., after the second Part, after Henry V., or hefore all of these 
Historical Plays ? Let us first state the difficulties which inseparably belong to the circumstances 
under which the similar characters of the Histoi-ical Plays and the Comedy are found, if the Comedy 
is to be received as a continuation of the Historical Plays. 

The FalstafF of the two Parts of Henry IV., who dies in Henry V., but who, according to Malone, 
comes alive again in the Mei-ry Wives, is found at Windsor living lavishly at the Garter Inn, sitting 
" at ten pounds a week," — with Bardolph and Nym and Pistol and the Page, his " followe):s." At what 
point of his previous life is FalstafF in this flourishing condition ? At Windsor he is represented as 
having committed an outrage upon one Justice Shallow. Could this outrage have been perpetrated 
after the borrowing of the " thousand pound," which was unpaid at the time of Henry the Fifth's 
coronation ; or did it take place before Falstaff and Shallow renewed their youthful acquaintance 
under the auspices of Justice Silence ? Johnson says " this play should be read between King Henry 
IV. and King Henry V." that is, after Falstaff's renewed intercourse with Shallow, the borrowing of 
the thousand pounds, and the failure of his schetnes at the coronation. Another writer says " it ought 
rather to be read between the first and the second Part of King Henry IV.," — that is, before FalstafF 
had met Shallow at his seat in Gloucestershire, at which meeting Shallow recollects nothing that had 
taken place at Windsor, and had clean forgotten the outrages of FalstafF upon his kee^jer, his dogs, 
and his deer. But FalstafF had been surrounded by much more important cii'cumstances than had 
belonged to his acquaintance with Master Shallow. He had been the intimate of a Prince— he had 
held high charge in the royal army. We learn indeed that he is a " soldier " when he addresses Mrs. 
Ford ; but he entirely abstains from any of those allusions to his royal friend which might have 
been supposed to be acceptable to a Merry Wife of Windsor. In the folio copy of the amended 
play, we have, positively, not one allusion to his connexion with the Court. In the quarto there is 
one solitary passage, which would apply to any Court — to that of Elizabeth, as well as to that of 
Henry V. — " Well, if the fine wits of the Coui-t hear this, they'll so whip me with their keen jests 
that they'll melt me out like tallow." In the same quarto, when FalstafF hears the noise of hunters 
at Heme's Oak, he exclaims, " I'll lay my life the mad Prince of Wales is stealing his father's deer." 
This points apparently at the Prince of Henry IV. ; but we think it had reference to the Prince of 
the ' Famous Victories,' — a character with whom Shakspere's audience was familiar. The passage 
is left out in the amended play ; but we find another passage which certainly is meant for a link, 
however slight, between the Merry Wives and Henry IV. : Pago objects to Fenton that " he kept 
company with the wild Prince and with Pointz." The corresponding passage in the quarto is " the 
gentlemen is wild — he knows too much." 

What does Shallow do at Windsor — he who inquired " how a good yoke of bullocks at Stamford 
fair]" — Robert Shallow, of Qlostershire, "a poor esquire of this county, and one of the king's 
justices of the peace ? " It is true that we are told by Slender that he was " iu the county of Gloster, 
justice of peace and coram," — but this information is first given us in the amended edition. In the 
sketch. Master Shallow (we do not find even his name of Robert) is indeed a " cavalero justice," 
according to our Host of the Garter, but his commission may be in Berkshire for aught that the poet 
tella us to the contrary. Slender, indeed is, "as good as is any in Glostershire, under the degree of 

• We have given the description of the Parks in Oie Xocal Illustration of Act II. 


a squire," au<l Lc is Shallow's cousin;— but of Shallow "the local habitation" is undefmctl enough 
to make ua believe that he might have been a son, or iutleed a father (for ho says, " I am four- 
score,") of the real Justice Shallow. Again : — In Henry IV., Part I., we have a Hostess without 
a name,— the "good pint-pot" who is exhorted by Falstafl" "love thy husband;" — in Henry IV., 
Part II., we have Hostess Quicklij, — "a poor u-idoic," accoidiuj^ to tlio Chief Justice, to whom 
Falstaff owes himself and his money too ; — in Henry V., this good Hostess is " (he quondam Quickly," 
•who has married Pistol, and who, it the received opinion bo correct, died before her husband 
returned from the wars of Henry V. Where shall we place the Mistress Quickhj, than whom 
" never a woman in Windsor knows more of Anne's mind," — and who defies all angels " but in the 
way of honchty ? " — She has evidently had no previous passages with Sir John F;dstaff; — she is "a 
foolish carrion" only,— Dr. Caius's nurse, or his dry nurse, or his cook, or bis laundry; — she has 
not heard Falstafif declaim, '• as like one of these harlotry players as I ever see ; " — she hiis not 
sate with him by a sea-coal fire, when goodwifo Keech, the butcher's wife, ciime in and called lier 
" gossip Quickly ; " — she did not see him " fumble with the sheets, and play with flowers, and 
smile upon his fingers' ends," when " there w;is but one way." Falstaff and Quickly are sti-angers. 
She ia to him either "goodwife" or "good maid," — and at any i-ate only "fair woman." Surely, 
we cannot place Jlistress Quickly of the Merry Wives after Henry V., when she was dead ; or after 
the second Part of Henry IV., when she was a "poor widow ; " or before the second Part, when she 
had a husband and children. She must stand alune in the Merry Wives, — an undefined predeccRsor 
of the famous Quickly of the Boar's Head. 

But Pistol and Bardolph — are they not the same " irregular humorists " (as tlu-y are called in 
the original list of characters to the second Part of Henry IV.,) acting with Falstaff under the same 
circumstances? We think not. The Pistol of the Merry Wives is not the "ancient" Pistol of the 
second Part of Henry IV. and of Henry V., nor is Bardolph the " corporal " Bardolph of the 
second Part of Henry IV., nor the "lieutenant" Baidolph of Henry V. In the title-page, 
indeed, of the sketch, published as we believe without authority as a substitute for the more 
complete play, we have "the swaggering vaine (vein) of ancient Pistoll and corporal Nym." 
Corporal Xym is no companion of Falstaff in the Historical Plays, for he first makes his appearance 
in the Henry V. Neither Pistol, nor Bardolph, nor Nym, appear in the Merry Wives to be 
soldiers serving under Falstaff. They are his "cogging companions" of the first sketch; they are 
his "coney-catching rascals" of the amended play; — in both they are his "followers" whom he 
can turn away, discard, cashier; but Falstaff is not their "captain." 

It certainly does appeal- to us that these anomalous positions in which the charactera common 
to the Merry Wives of Windsor and the Henry IV. and Heuiy V. are placed, furnish a very 
strong presumption that the Comedy was not a continuation of the Histories. That the Merry 
Wives of Windsor was a continuation of Henry V. appears to us impossible. Malone does not 
think it very clear that the Merry Wives of Windsor "was written after King Henry V. Nym and 
Bardolph are both hanged in King Henry V., yet appear in the Merry Wives of Windsor. Falstaff 
is disgraced in the second jiart of King Henry IV., and dies in King Henry V. ; but in the Merry 
Wives of Windsor he talks as if he were yet in favour at court." Assuredly these are very natural 
objections to the theory that the Comedy was written after Henry V. ; but Malone disposes of the 
diflSculty by the summary process of revival. Did ever any the most bungling writer of imagination 
proceed upon such a principle as is hero imputed to the moat skilful of dramatists ? — Would any 
audience ever endure such a violence to their habitual modes of thought ? Would the readers of 
the Spectator have tolerated the revival of Sir Roger de Coverley in the Guardian ? Could the 
mother of the Mary of Aveuel of the Monastery be found alive in the Abbot, except through the 
agency of the White Lady ? The conception is much too monstrous. 

Every person who has written on the character of Falstaff admits the inferiority of the butt of 
the Merry Wives of Windsor to the wit of the Boar's Head. It is remarkable that in Morgann's 
very elaborate Essay on the Character of Falstaff not one of his characteristics is derived from the 
Comedy. It has been regretted, by more than one critic, that Shakspere should have carried on 
the disgrace of Falstaff in the conclusion of Henry IV., to the further humiliation of the scenes at 
Datchet Mead and Heme's Oak ; and, what is worse, that Shakspere should in the Comedy have 
eiagi^erated the vices of Falstaff, and brought him down from his intellectual eminence. Shakspere 
foimd somewhat similar incidents to the adventures cf Falstaff with JIrs, Ford in a 'Story oi" 

CojtEDiES.— Vol. I. L 1-15 


tlie two Lovers of Pisa,' published in Tarletou's ' Newes out of Purgatorie,' 1590. In that story an 
intrigue is carried on, with no innocent intentions on the part of the lady, with a young man who 
makes the old husband his confidant, as Falstaff makes Brook, and whose escaj^es in chests and up 
chimneys may have suggested the higher comedy of the buck-basket and the wise woman of Brent- 
ford. The stoiy is given at length in Malone's edition of our poet. But Shakspere desired to shew a 
butt and a dupe — not a successful gallant; a husband jealous without cause — not an unhappy old 
man plotting against his betrayers. He gave the whole affair a ludicrous turn. He made the lover 
old and fat and avaricious; — betrayed by his own greediness and vanity into the most humiliating 
Bcrapes, so that his complete degradation was the natural denouement of the whole adventure, and 
the progress of his shame the proper source of merriment. Could the adroit and witty Falstafif of 
Henry IV. have been selected by Shakspere for such an exhibition? In truth the Falstaff of the 
Merry Wives, especially as we have him in the first sketch, is not at all adroit, and not veiy witty_ 
Read the very first scene in which Falstaff appears in this comedj'. To Shallow's reproaches he 
opposes no weapon but impudence, and that not of the sublime kind which so astounds tis in the 
Henry IV. Read further the scene in which he discloses his views upon the Merry Wives to Pistol 
and Nym. Here Pistol is the wit : — 

" Fal. My honest lads, I will tell you what I am aI)o\it. 
Pisl. Two yards and more. 
I'al. No quips now, Pistol." 

Again, in the same scene : — 

" Fal. Sometimes the beam of her view gilded my foot, sometimes my portly belly. 
Pisl. Then did the sun on dunghill sliine." 

There can be no doubt, however, that when the comedy was re-modelled, which certainly was done 
after the production of Henry IV., the character of Fal.?taff was much heightened. But still the 
poet kept him far behind the Falstaff of Henry IV. Falstaff's descriptions, first to Bardolph and 
then to Brook, of his buck-ba,sket adventure, are amongst the best things in the comedy, and they 
are very slightly altered from the original sketch. But compare them with any of the racy 
passages of the Falstaff of the Boar's Head, and after the comparison we feel ourselves in the 
presence of a being of far lower powers of intellect than the Falstaff " unimitated, unimitable." Is 
this acknowledged inferiority of the Falstaff of the Merry Wives most easily reconciled with the 
theory that he was produced before or after the Falstaff of the Henry IV. ? That Elizabeth 
might have suggested the Merry Wives, originally, upon some traditionary tale of Windsor — that it 
might have been acted in the gallerj' which she built at Windsor, and which still bears her name— 
we can understand ; but we cannot reconcile the belief that Shakspere produced the Falstaff of the 
Merry Wives after the Falstaff of Henry IV. with our imbounded confidence in the habitual power 
of such a poet. To him Falstaff was a thing of I'eality. He had drawn a man altogether different 
from other men, but altogether in nature. Could he much lower the character of that man ? Another 
and a feebler might have given us the Falstaff of the Merry Wives as an imitation of the 
FalstalT of Henry IV. ; but Shakspere must have abided by the one Falstaff that he had made after 
such a wondrous fashion of truth and originality. 

And then Justice Shallow — never-to-be-forgotten Justice Shallow ! — The Shallow who will bring 
Falstaff "before the Council" is not the Shallow who with him "heard the chimes at midnight." 
The Shallow of the Sketch of the Merry Wives has not even Shallow's trick of repetition. In the 
amended Play this characteristic may be recognised; but in the sketch there is not a trace of it. 
For example, in the first Scene of the finished play we find Shallow talking somewhat like the 
great Shallow, especially about the fallow greyhound ; in the sketch this passage is altogether 
wanting. In the Sketch he says to Page, " Though he be a knight he shall not think to carry it so 
away. Ma.ster Page, I will not be wrong'd." In the finished play we have, "He hath wrong'd me. 
indeed he hath, at a word he hath : believe me, Robert Shallow, esquire, saith he is wrong'd." And 
Ifeirdolph too ! Could it be predicated that the Bartlolph of a comedy which was produced after 
the Henry IV. would want those " meteors and exhalations " which characterise the Bardolph who 
was a standing joke to Falstaff and the Prince? Would his zeal cease \o "burn in his nose?" 
Absolutely, in the first Sketch, there is not the slightest allusion to that face which ever " blushed 
extempore." One mention, indeed, there is in the complete play of the " red face," and one 
supposed allusion of " Scarlet and John." The commentators have wished to shew that Bardolph 


iu botli copies is calleil ''a tinder-box" ou account of his nose; but this is not vory tli-ar, 
And then Pistol is not the magnificent bully of the second Part of Henry IV., and of lleiuy V. 
He has "affectations," as Sir Hugh mentions, and speaks "in Latin," as Slender has it; — but he 
is here literally "a tame cheater," but not without considerable cleverness. "Why then the woild'j 
mine oyster" is essentially higher than the obscure bombast of the re;il Pistol. Of Mistress Quickly 
we hare already spoken as to the circumstances in which she is placed ; and these circumstance/; 
are so essentially different that we can scarcely recognise any mai-kod similarity of character in th»! 
original Sketch. 

Having, then, seen the great and insuperable difficulties which belong to the theory that the 
Merry Wives of Windsor was written after the Histories, let us consider what difficulties, both of 
situation and char.vcter, present themselves under the other theory, that the Comedy was produced 
before the Histories. 

First, is it irreconcilable with the tradition referring to Queen Elizabeth ? It is not so, if v.v 
adopt the tradition as related by Dennis— this Comedy was written by Queen Elizabeth's command, 
and finished in fourteen days. This statement of the matter is plain and simple ; because it is 
disembarrassed of those explanations and inferences which never belong to any popular tradition, 
but are superadded by ingenious persons who have a theory to establish. We can perfectly 
anderstand how the Merry Wives of Wind.sor, as we have it in the first Sketch, might have been 
produced by Shakspere in a fortnight ; — and how such a slight and lively piece, containing many 
local allusions, and perhaps some delineations of real characters, might have furnished the greatest 
solace to Elizabeth some seven or eight years before the end of the sixteenth century, after 
mornings busily employed in talking politics with Leicester, or in translating Boetius in her own 
private chamber. The manners throughout, and without any disguise, are those of Elizabeth's own 
time. Leave out the line in the amended play of " the mad Prince and Poins," — and the lino iu 
the Sketch about " the wild Prince killing his father's deer" — and the whole play (taken apart from 
the Hi.=tories) might with much greater propriety be acted with the costume of the age of IClizabeth. 
It is for this reason, most probably, that we find so little of pure poetry either in the Sketch or the 
finished performance. As Shakspere placed his characters in his own country, with the manners of 
his own day.i, he made them speak like ordinary human being-s, shewing 

" deeds, and language, such as men do use, 

And persons such as Comedy would choose. 
When she would shew an image of the times, 
And sport with human follies, not with crimes."* 

We may believe, therefoie, the tradition (without adopting the circumstances which make it difficult 
of belief) and accept the theory that the Merry Wives of Windsor was written before the Henry I\'. 

Secondly, is the theory that the Comedj* was produced before the Histories, irreconcilable with 
the contradictory circumstances which render the other theory so difficult of admission A.«suming 
that the Comedy was written before the Histories, it can be read without any violeuce to our 
indelible recollections of the situations of the charactera in the Henry IV. and Henry V. 
It must be read with a conviction that if there be any connexion of the siction at all, it is a 
very slight one — and that this action precedes the Henry IV. by some indefinite period. Then, the 
Falstaff who in the quiet shades of Windsor did begin to perceive he was "made an ass" had not 
acquired the experience of the city, for before he knew Hal he "knew nothing," — then the fair 
maid Quickly, who afterwards contrived to have a husband and be a poor widow without 
changing her name, knew no higher sphere than the charge of Dr. Caius's laundry and kitchen ; — 
then Pistol was not an ancient, certainly hail not married the quondam Quickly, had not made the 
dangerous experiment of jesting with Fluellen, and occasionally talked like a reasonable being ; — 
then Shallow had some unexplained business which took him from Glostershire to Windsor, 
travelled without his man Davy, had not lent a thousand pounds to Sir John Falstaff, and was 
not quite so silly and so delightful as when he had drunk "too much sack at supper" toasting " all 
the cavalsroes about London ;"— then, lastly, Bardolph was not " Master Corporate Baidolph," and 
certainly Nym and he had not been hanged. 

Thirdly, does the theory of the production of the Meny Wives of Windsor before Henry 17. 

• Ben Jonson. Prologue to ' Every Man in his Humcur.' 
L -2 147 


aud Henry V., furuisli a proper solution of the remarkaLle inferiority in the Comedy of several of 
the characters which are common to both ? If we accept the opinion that the Falstafi", the Shallow, 
the Quickly, the Pistol, Bardolph, and Nym, of the Merry Wives, were all originally conceived by 
the i)oet before the characters with similar names in the Henry IV. and Henry V. ; and that after 
they had been in some degree adopted in the Historical Plays, Shakspere remodelled the Merry 
Wives, and heightened the resemblances of character which the resemblances of name implied, — 
the inferiority in several of these characters, especially in the Sketch, will be accounted for, without 
assuming, with Johnson, that "the poet approached as near as he could to the work enjoined him; 
yet having perhaps in the former play completed his own idea, seenas not to have been able to give 
Falstaff all his former powers of entertainment." Johnson's opinion proceeds upon the veiyjust 
assumption that continuations are, for the most part, inferior to original conceptions. But the Merry 
Wives could not have been proposed as a continuation of the Henry IV. and the Heniy V., even if 
it had been written after those plays. If it were written after the Histories the author certainly 
mystified all the new circumstances as compared with those which had preceded them, for the 
purpose of destroying the idea of continuation. This appears to us too violent an assumj^tion. But 
no other can be maintained. To attribute such interminable contradictions to negligence, is to 
assume that Shakspere was not only the greatest of poet.?, but of blunderers. 

And now we must hazard a conjecture. The reader will remember that in the Introductory 
Notice to Heniy IV. we gave a brief account of the evidence by which it has been attempted to 
shew that the Falstaff of the first Part of Henry IV. was originally called Oldcastle. If that were 
the case, and the balance of evidence is in favour of that opinion, the whole matter seems to 
us clearei'. Let it be remembered that Falstaff and Bardolph are the only characters that are 
common to the first Part of Henry IV. and the Merry AVives of Windsor ; for in the original 
copy of Henry IV. Part I. the person who stand.? amongst the modern list of characters as Quickly 
i.s invariably called the Hostess. If the Falstaff, then, of Henry IV. were originally Oldcastle, we 
have only Bardolph left in common to the two dramas. Was Bardolph originally called so in 
Henry IV. Part I. ? When Poius proposes to the Prince to go to Gadshill he says, in the original 
copy, " I have a jest to execute that I cannot manage alone, — Falstaff, Harvey, Ilos.sil and Gadshill 
shall rob these men," &c. We now read "Falstaff, Bardolph, Peto, and Gadshill," &c. It has 
been conjectured that Harvey and Rossil were the names of actoi'S ; but as Oldcastle remains 
where we now read Falstaff in one place of the original copy, might not in the same way Bardolph 
have been originally Harvey or Rossil 1 This point, however, is not material. If Shakspere 
were compelled, by a strong expression of public ojiinion, to remove the name of Oldcastle from the 
first Part of Henry IV., the name of Falstaff vftis ready to his hand as a substitute. He had 
drawn a hiirjht,fat and tinscrupuloiis, as he had represented Oldcastle, but far his inferior in wit, 
humour, inexhaustible merriment, presence of mind, and intellectual activity. The transition was 
not inconsistent from the Falstaff of the Meny Wiveti to the Falstaff of Henry IV. The character, 
when Shakspere remodelled the first sketch of the comedy, required some elevation ; — but it still 
might stand at a long distance, without offence to an audience who knew that the inferior creation 
was first produced. With Falstaff Shakspere might have transferred Bardolph to the first Part of 
Henry IV., but materially altered. The base Hungarian wight who would "the .spigot wield," 
had, as a tapster, made his nose a " fiery kitchen " to roast malt-worms ; and he was fit to save him 
" a thousand mai'ks in links and toi'ches." When, further, Falstaff had completely superseded Old- 
castle in the first Part of Henry IV., Shakspere might have adopted Pistol and Shallow and Quickly 
in the second Part, — but greatly changed; — and lastly, have introduced Nym to the Henry V. un. 
changed. All this being accomplished, he would naturally have remodelled the first sketch of the 
Merry Wives,— making the relations between the characters of the comedy and of the histories 
closer, but still of purpose keeping the situations sufficiently distinct. He thus for ever connected 
the Merry Wives with the Historical Plays. The Falstaff of the comedy must now belong to the 
ago of Henry IV. ; but to be understood he must, we venture to think, be regarded as the embryo 

We request that it may be borne in mind that the entire argument which we have thus advanced is 
founded upon a conviction that the original Sketch, as published in the quarto of 1602, is an au- 
thentic production of our poet. Had no such Sketch existed, we must have reconcilecl the difficulties 
of believing the Marry Wives of Windsor to have been produced after Henry IV. and Henry V., as we 


best might have done. Then we must have acknowledged that the chaiiicters of Falstaft' and Shallow 
and Quickly were the same in the Comedy and the Henry IV., though represented rmdcr different 
circuiiislancei. Then wo must have believed that the contradictory situations were to be explained 
by the determination of Shakspere boldly to disregard the circumstances which resulted from his 
compliance with the commands of Elizabeth — " to shew Falstafl' in love." But that sketch bein" 
preserved to us, it is much easier, we think, to believe that it was produced before the Historioa ; 
and that the characters were subsojuently heightened, and more strikingly delineated, to assimi- 
late them to the characters of tho Histories. After all, we have endeavoured, whilst wo have ex- 
pi*essed our own belief, fairly to present both sides of the question. Tho point, we think, is of 
interest to the lovers of Shakspere ; for inferring that the comedy is a continuation of the history, 
tho inferiority of the Falstaflf of the Merry Wives to tho Falstafl' of Jleury IV., implies a consi- 
derable abatement of the poet's skill. On the other hand, the conviction that tho sketch of tho 
comedy preceded the history — that it was an early play — and that it was subsequently remodelled 
— is conf.isient with the belief in the j.rogression of that extraordinary intellect which acquired 
greater vigour the more its powers were exercised. 

Cost D ME. 

The costume of this Comedy is, of course, the same with that of the two parts of Henry IV., 
and, therefore, for its general description we must refer our readers to the notice aftixed to Part I. of 
that play. Chaucer, however, who wrote his Canterbury Tales towards the close of tho previous 
reign, gives us a few hints for the habit of some of the principal characters in the Merry Wives. 
Dr. Caius, for instance, should be clothed, like tho Doctor of I'hysic, " in sanguine and in perse," 
(L e. in purple and light blue) the gown being "lined with tafata and scndal." In "the Testament 
of Cresseyde " Chavicet' speaks of a Physician in " a scarlet gown," and " furred well, as such a one 
ought to be ;" but scarlet and purple were terms used indifferently one for the other, and the phraFo 
" scarlet red " was genei-ally used to designate that colour which we now call scarlet. 

The Franklin or Country gentleman — the Master Page, or Master Ford of this play — is merely 
said to have worn an anelace or knife, and a white silk gipciere or purse hanging at his girdle. 

The young 'Squire may furnish us with the dress of Master Fenton. He is described as wearing 
a short gown, with sleeves long and >vide, and embroidered "as it were a mead, all full of fresh 
flowers white and red." Falstaff, when dressed as Heme the Hunter, should be attired like his 
Yeoman, in a coat and hood of green, with a horn slung in a green baldrick. 

The Wife of Bath is said to have worn, on a Sunday, or holyday, kerchiefs on her head of 
the finest manufacture, but in such a quantity as to weigh nearly a pound. — When, she 
woi-e " a hat as broad as is a buckler or a targe." Her stockings were of fine scarlet red, and her 
shoes "full moist and new." The high-crowned hats and point lace aprons, in which the Merry 
Wives of Windsor have been usually depicted, are of the seventeenth, instead of the fifteenth 

Wi .rtfe* 


SiB John Falstaff. 


Shallow, a country justice. 

Slender, cousin to Shallow. 

Mr. FoBD, ) 

Mr. Page i '"'" S<^ntlcmen dzvelling at Winilsor, 

William Page, a boy, son to Mr. Page. 

Sir Hugh Evans, a Welch parson. 

Dr. Caius, a French phyucian. 

Host of the Garter Inn. 

Baudolpii, "j 

Pistol, | followers of FalstafT. 

Nym, J 

Robin, page to Falstaff. 

SiKPLE, servant to Slender. 

Rugby, servant to Dr. Caius. 

Mrs. Ford. 

Mrs. Page. 

Mrs Anke Page, lier daughter. 

Mrs. Quickly, servant to Dr. Caiu.'i. 

Servants to Page, Ford, %c. 

^. A Mf 


[" 1 pray you, sir, walk In. "J 


SCENE I.— Windsor. Garden Front of 'Stir's 

Enter Justice SiiAixow, Slender, and Sir Hugh 


SAal. Sir Hugh,' persuade me not ; I will 
make a Star-chamber* matter of it : if he were 
twenty sir Johu Falstaffs, he sliall not abuse 
Bobert Shallow, esquire. 

S!en. In the county of Gloster, justice of 
peace, and coram. 

Shal. Ay, cousin Slender, and Cust-alorum}' 

Slen. Ay, and ratolorum too ; and a gentleman 
bom, master parson ; who writes himself armi- 

» So In Ben Jonson, (Magnetic Lady, Act IIF. Sc. IV.) : 
" There U a Court above, of the Star-chamber, 
To puniih routs and riola." 
b CuttaloTum \% meant for an abridfrment of Cuttot 
Jtobilorum. Slender, not understanding the abbreviation, 
addh "and ralolor mm too." 

ffero ; in any bill, warrant, quittance, or obliga- 
tion, ar}Ai(jeru.*' 

Shal. Ay, that I do; and have done"" any 
time these three liuudrrd years. 

Slen. All his successors, gone before him, have 
don 't ; aud all his ancestors, tliat come after 
him, may : they may give the dozen white luces 
in their coat. 

Shal. It is an old coat. 

l\ta. The dozen white louses do become :m 
old coat well ; it agrees well, passant : it is a 
familiar beast to man, and signiGes love. 

Shal. The luce is the fresh Qsh ; the salt fish 
is an old coat.- 

Slen. I may quarter, coz ? 

Shal. You may, by marrying. 

• The Justice signed his attestations, " Jurat ' coram me, 
Roberto Shallow, armigero." 

b Hare done — tee have done— "his su'cessora, gone befor- 
him," as Slender eipUins it. 


Act I.J 



Eva. It is marring, indeed, if he quarter it. 

Shal. Not a whit. 

Eva Yes, py'r-kdy; if he has u quarter of 
your coat there is bat three skirts for yourself, 
in my simple conjectures : but that is all one : 
If sir John FalstaiT have committed disparage- 
ments unto you, I ain of tlic church, and \ull be 
glad to do my benevolence, to make atonements 
and compromises between you. 

Shal. The Council shall hear it ; it is a riot. 

Eca. It is not meet the Council hear a riot ; 
there is no fear of Got in a riot : the Council, 
look you, shall desire to hear the fear of Got, 
and not to hear a riot ; take your vizaments" in 

Shal. Ha! o' my life, if I were young again 
the sword should end it. 

Eva. It is petter that friends is the sword, 
and end it : and there is also another device in 
my prain, which, pcradventure, prings goot 
discretions with it : There is Amie Page, which 
is daughter to master George Page, which is 
pretty virginity. 

Slen. ]\Iistress Anne Page? She has brown 
hair, and speaks small like a woman. 

Eca. It is that fery person for all the 'orld, as 
just as you wUl desire; and seven hundred- 
pounds of monies, and gold, and silver, is her 
grandsire upon his death's-bed, (Got deliver to 
a joyful resurrections !) give, when she is able 
to overtake seventeen years old : it were a goot 
motion if we leave our pribbles and prabbles, 
and desire a marriage between master Abraham 
and mistress Anne Page. 

Shal. Did her graudsire leave her seven hun- 
dred pound ? 

Eva. Ay, and her father is make lier a petter 

Shal. I know the young gentlewoman ; she 
lias good gifts. 

Eca. Seven hundred pounds, and possibilities, 
is goot gifts. 

Shal. Well, let us see honest master Page : Is 
Falstaff there ? 

Eva. Shall I tell you a lie ? I do despise a 
liar as I do despise one that is false ; or as I 
despise one that is not true. Tlie knight, sir 
Jolm, is there ; and, I beseech you, be ruled by 
your well-willcrs. I will peat the door \_knoch'] 
for master Page. What, hoa! Got plcss your 
house here ! 

Enter Page. 

Parje. Who's there ? 

a Fix«mcn/j— advisements. 

Eva. Here is Got's plessing, and your friend, 
and justice Shallow: and here young master 
Slender; that, pcradveutures, shall tell you 
another tale, if matters grow to yom- likings. 

Fa(/e. I am glad to see your worships well : I 
thank you for my venison, master Shallow. 

Shal. Master P.ige, I am glad to see you ; 
Miich good do it your good heart ! I wished your 
venison better ; it was ill kiUed : — How dotli 
good mistress Page ? — and I thank "^ you always 
with my heart, la ; with my heart. 

Paffe. Sir, I thank you. 

Shal. Sir, I thank you ; by yea and no, I do. 

Page. I am glad to see you, good master 

Slen. How does your fallow greyhomid, sir ? 
I heard say he was out-run on CotsaU.^ 

Pafje. It could not be judg'd, sir. 

Slen. You'll not confess, you'll not confess. 

Shal. That he will not ; — 'tis your fault, 'tis 
your fault : — 'Tis a good dog. 

Page. A cur, sir. 

Shal. Sir, he's a good dog, and a fair dog ; 
Can there be more said ? he is good, and fan-. 
Is sir John Falstaff here ? 

Page. Sir, he is within ; and I would I could 
do a good office between you. 

Eva. It is spoke as a Christians ought to speak. 

Shal. He hath wrong'd me, master Page. 

Page. Sii", he doth in some sort confess it. 

Shal. If it be eonfess'd it is not redress'd ; is 
not that so, master Page ? He hath viTong'd me ; 
indeed he hath ; — at a word he hath ; — beUevc 
me ; Robert Shallow, esquire, saith he is wrong'd. 

Page. Here comes sir John. 

Enter Sir John Falstaff, Bakdolpii, Nym, and 

Fal. Now, master Shallow; you'll complain 
of me to the king ? 

Shal. Knight, you have beaten my men, killed 
my deer, and broke open my lodge. 

Fal. But not kiss'd your keeper's daughter. 

Shal. Tut, a pin ! this shall be answcr'd. 

Fal. 1 will answer it straight ; — I have done 
all this : — That is now answcr'd. 

Shal. The Council shall know this. 

Fal. 'Twere better for you if it were known in 
counsel;'' you'll be laughed at. 

a / thank you. So Ihe folio. The early quartos, " I love 

b Counsel. Stecvens adopts the spelling of the first 
quarto — Council and counsell. The folio, in both cases, 
has cnuncrll. In the distinction which Steevens has sug- 
gested, Falstaff makes a small jest — quibbling between the 
Council of the Star-chamber .-ind counsel in the sense of a 
man's private advisers. Probably Steevens is right. 


Act I] 



Eat. Puiica verba, sir Jolin, goot worts. 

Fal. Good worts! good cabbage."— Slender, 1 
broke your bead ; Wbat matter have you against 

Slen. Marry, sir, I have matter in nay head 
against you ; and against your coney -catehing'' 
rascals, Biu-dolpli, Nyni, and Pistol. [They 
carried me to the tavern and made me dnink, 
and afterwards picked my pocket.*] 

Bard. You Banbury cheese ! ** 

Slen. Ay, it is no matter. 

Pist. How now, Mephostophilus ? " 

Slen. Ay, it is no matter. 

N^m. Slice, I say ! paticn, i)auca ; slice ! 
that's my humour. 

Slen. Where's Simple, my man ?— can you tell, 
cousin ? 

Eca. Peace : I pray you ! Now let us under- 
stand : There is three umpires in this matter, as 
I understand : that is— master Page, Jidelicef, 
master Page ; and there is m\se\i, Jidelicef, my- 
self; and the tliree party is, kstly and finally, 
mine host of the Garter. 

Paye. We three, to hear it and end it between 

Eca. Fery goot : I will make a prief of it in 
my note-book ; and we will afterwards 'ork upon 
the cause, witli as great discreetly as wc can. 

Fal. Pistol,— 

Pist. He hears ^\'ith cars. 

Eca. The tevil and his tarn ! what phrase is 
this, He /tears with ear ? Why, it is affectations. 

Pal. Pistol, did you pick master Blender's 

Slen. Ay, by these gloves, did he, (or I would 
I might never come in mine own great chamber 
again else,) of seven groats in mill-sixpences,^ 
and two Edward shovel-boards, that cost me 
two shilling and two pence a-piece of lead 
Miller, by these gloves. 
Fal. Is this true, Pistol? 
Eca. No ; it is false, if it is a pick -purse. 
Pist. Ha, thou mountain-foreigner ! — Sir John 
and master mine, 
I combat challenge of this lattcn bilbo / 
Word of denial in thy labras ^ here ; 

■ H'or/» the generic name of cabbages;— we liave 
itill cole-tcorl. 

b Coney-catcher was synonymous with sharper 

c The |i.-«ssage between brackets is not in the folio. 

d In "Jack Drum's Entertainment" (ICOU we have, 
" you are like a Banbury cheese — nothing but paring." 

e Mephnitophilut is an evil spirit in the old story of "Sir 
John Faustus ; " — but a very inferior demon to the extraor- 
dinary creation of Goethe. 

f Bilbo is a sword ;— a latten bilbo— a sword made of a 
thin latten plate— expresses Pistol's opinion of Slender's 

g Labrat. lips;—" word of denial in thy labras." is equi- 
valent to '• the lie in thy teeth." 

Word of denial : froth and scum, thou liest ! 

Slen. By these gloves, thcu 'twas he. 

Ni/Hi. Be advis'd, sir, and pass good humours ; 
I will say, many trap, with you, if you run the 
nuthook's humour "on me : that is the very 
note of it. 

Sle/i. By this hat, then, he in the red face had 
it : for though 1 cannot remember what I did 
when you made me drunk, yet I am not altoge- 
ther an ass. 

Fal. Wliat say you, Scarlet and John ? 

Pard. Wliy, sir, for my part, I say, the gen- 
tleman had drunk himself out of his five sen- 

Eca. It is his five senses : fie, what the igno- 

rance IS 

Bard. And being fap,^ sir, was, as they say, 
cashier'd : and so conclusions passed the careers.' 

Slen. Ay, you spake in Latin then too; but 
'tis no matter : I'll ne'er be drunk whilst I live 
again, but in honest, civil, godly company, for 
this trick: if I be drunk, I'll be drunk with 
those that have the fear of God, and not with 
drunken knaves. 

Eca. So Got 'udge me, that is a virtuous 

Fal. You hear all these matters denied, gen- 
tlemen ; you hear it. 

Enter Mistress Anne Page icith wine ; Mistress 
Ford and Mistress VAGz/ollowin//. 

Page. Nay, daughter, carry the wine in ; we'll 
drink within. [JExit Anne Page. 

Slen. heaven ! this is mistress Anne Page. 

Page. How now, mistress Ford ? 

Fal. Mistress Ford, by my troth, you arc 
very well met : by your leave, good mistress. 

[Jcissiiig her. 

Page. Wife, bid these gentlemen welcome: 
Come, we have a hot venison pasty to dinner ; 
come, gentlemen, I hope we shall drink down all 
unkind ncss. 

[Exeunt all but SiiAL. Slender, and Evaks. 

Slen. I had rather than forty shillings, I had 
my book of Songs and Sonnets^ here : — 

Enter Simple. 

How now. Simple ! Where have you been ? I 
must w:dt on myself, must I ? You have not the 
Book of lliddles about you, have you ? 

» The nuthook was used by the thief to hook portable 
commodities out of a window,— and thus Nym, in his queer 
fashion means, " if you say I'm a thief." 

b Fap, a cant word for drunk. 

c Careers. In the man'-ge to run a career was to gallop 
a horse violently backwards and forwards. 


Act 1.] 


[Scene I. 

Sim. Book of Riddles ? why, did you not lend 
it to Alice Shortcake upon Allhallowmas last, a 
fortnight afore Michaelmas ?* 

Shal. Come, coz ; come, coz ; we stay for 
you. A word with you, coz : marry, this, coz ; 
There is, as 'twere, a tender, a kind of tender, 
made afar off by sir Hugh here ; — Do you un- 
derstand me ? 

Slcn. Ay, sir,, you shall find me reasonable ; 
if it be so, I shall do that that is reason. 

Shal. Nay, but understand mc. 

Slen. So I do, sir. 

Eva. Give ear to his motions, master Slender : 
I will description tlie matter to you, if you be 
capacity of it. 

Slen. Nay, I will do as my cousin Shallow 
says: I pray you, pardon me; he's a justice of 
peace in his country, simple though I stand 

Eva. But that is not the question ; the ques- 
tion is concerning your marriage. 

Sh((l. Ay, there's the point, sir. 

Eca. Marry, is it ; the very point of it ; to 
mistress Anne Page. 

Slen. Why, if it be so I will marry her upon 
any reasonable demands. 

Ecci. But can you affection the 'oraan ? Let 
us command to know that of your mouth or of 
your lips ; for divers pliilosophers hold that the 
lips is parcel of the mouth -.—Therefore, pre- 
cisely, can you carry your good will to the maid ? 

Shal. Cousin Abraliarn Slender, can you love 

Slen. I hope, sir, — I will do as it shall become 
one that would do reason. 

Eva. Nay, Got's lords and his ladies, you 
must speak possitable, if you can carry her your 
desires towards her. 

Shal. That you must : Will you, upon good 
dowry, marry her ? 

Slen. I will do a greater thing than that, upon 
your request, cousin, in any reason. 

Shal. Nay, conceive me, conceive me, sweet 
coz ; what I do is to pleasure you, coz : Can 
you love the maid ? 

Slen. I will maiTy her, sir, at your request ; 
but if there be no great love in the beginning, 
yet heaven may decrease it upon better acquaint- 
ance, when we are married and have more 
occasion to know one another : 1 hope, upon 
familiarity will grow more contempt ;'' but if you 
say, marri/ hrr, I will man-y her, that I am 
freely dissolved, and dissolutely. 

» Theobald proposed Martlcmas. 

•> Ci'nienipl. Ths folio reads coiilcnt — the word which 
Sk-nder meant to use. But the poor soul was thinking of his 
copy-book adafte, — " too much familiarity breeds contempt." 


Eaa. It is a fery discretion answer ; save, the 
faul' is in the 'ort dissolutely : the 'ort is, accord- 
ing to our meaning, resolutely ; — his meaning is 

Shal. Ay, I think my cousin meant well. 

Slen. Av, or else I would I might be hanged, 

Re-enter Anne Page, 

Shal. Here comes fair mistress Amie : — 
Would I were young for your sake, mistress 
Anne ! 

Anne. The dmner is on the table ; my father 
desires youi* worship's company. 

Shal. I will wait on him, fair mistress 

Eca. Od's plessed will! I will not be absence 
at the grace. 

[Exeunt Sitali-ow a7icl Sir H. Evans. 

Jn-ne. WUl't please vour worship to come in, 
sir ? 

Slen. No, I thank you, forsooth, heartily; 1 
am very well. 

Anne. The dinner attends you, sir. 

Slen. I am not a-hungry, I thank you, for- 
sooth. Go, sirrah, for all you are my man, go, 
wait upon my cousin Shallow : [E.vit Simple.] 
A justice of peace sometime may be beholden 
to his friend for a man : — I keep but three men 
and a boy yet, till my mother be dead : But 
what though ? yet I live like a poor gentleman 

Anne. I may not go in without your worship 
they will not sit till you come. 

Slen. V faith, I '11 eat nothing ; I thank you as 
much as though I did. 

Anne. I pray you, sir, walk in. 

Slen. I had rather walk here, I thank you ; I 
bruised my shin the other day with playing at 
sword and dagger with a master of fence," three 
veneys for a dish of stewed prunes ; and, by my 
troth, I cannot abide the smell of hot meat 
since. Why do your dogs bark so ? be there 
bears i' the town. 

Anne. I think there are, sir; I heard them 
talked of. 

Slen. I love the sport well; but I shall as 
soon quarrel at it, as any man in England : — 
You are afraid if you see the bear loose, are you 

Anne. Ay, indeed, sir. 

Slen. That's meat and drink to me now : I 
have seen Sackerson " loose twenty times ; and 
have taken him by the chain : but, I warrant 
you, the women have so cried and shriek'd at it. 

Chni. Rob. I 

..N S" r.Mii: AM' - I 1 NM 

\ G. P. A'irh' ';.t, '.-H.'/j. 

Slcndrr. "I liml rdtlier walk liere, I thank yon." 

Merry Wives of Windsor. Act i., S(\ 1. 



^CT I.] 


[Scrxv III. 

that it pass'd : » — but women, indeed, cannot 
abide 'em ; thev are very ill favoured rough 


Re-e*tfr Page. 

Pj<;f. Come, gentle master Slender, come ; we 
stay for you. 

SUh, 111 eat nothing, I thank you, sir. 

Pa^f. By cock and pye, you shall not choose, 
sir : come, come. 

5Zf*. Xay, pray you, lead the way. 

Pay^f. Come on, sir. 

SlfM. Mistress Anne, yourself shall go first. 

Amu. Not I, sir ; pray you, keep on. 

SUh. Truly, I will not go first ; truly, la : I 
will not do you that wrong. 

Amiu. I pray you, sir. 

Slen. I "11 rather be unmannerly than trouble- 
some ; Tou do yourself wrong, indeed, la. 

SCENE II.— 7^ tame. 
EmUr Sir HcGH Etaxs and SllCPLE. 

Eca. Go your ways, and ask of •• Doctor Caius* 
house, — which is the way : and there dwells one 
mistress Quickly, which is in the manner of his 
nurse, or his dry nurse, or his cook, or his 
laundrv,* his washer, and his wringer. 

Sim. Well, sir. 

Era. Nay, it b peiter yet : — give her this 
letter; for it is a 'oman that altogether's ac- 
quaintance with mistress Anne Page : and the 
letter is, to desire and require her to solicit your 
master's desires to mistr^ Anne Page : I pray 
TOu, begone ; I will make an end of my dinner ; 
there's pippins and cheese to come. {EreitHt. 

SCEND UL—A Room in the Garter Inn. 

Emtfr YiJJSTiTf, Host, Barikjlph, Ntm, Pistol, 

and RoBlX. 

Fal. Mine hoit of the Garter. — 

Host. What says my bully-rook?' Speak 
8dK>larly and wisely. 

Pal. Truly, mine host, I must turn away some 
of mv followers. 

& com- 

^ It p ; 111 : • ■ - - -■ 

mon IDC* . r r t ' s , ■ 

in .\ct IV. ^ ... .. , •• U.i» j.s.;i^>. 

b Of Dr. Caiuj' kotue—^ii for Dr. Caii- - a»k 

vhich is the iray. 

e La^ndr^. Sir Hojh ineaBS to tay Immm^^, at .««■- 

* Donee ixj* that hmllf-nok a not derived from tbe mk 
at chesa;— Imt that it means a hcctoiing, c h eatin g sharper. 

We aoredy think that the B—* -< hare ap^ied sarh 

ofci i M T e tenna to PMatai; wt. -.fapenadsaweefc." 

Rove has tuiif-roci. which S'. '^iopts. sboving. bv 

H&tt. Discard, bully Uertrules ; cashier : let 
them wag; trot, trot. 

Pal. I sit at ten pounds a week. 

" ' Thou'rt : -ror, Ca-.r, a. >;.r, 

tx. . . ir. I » .. lin Bardolph ; he shall 

draw, he shall tap : said I well, bully Hector r 

i/.j.'. i L-ivc ;;_:.. . ; follow: Let mc 

see thee froth and lime:' I am at a word; 
follow. [£«■/ Uc>ST. 

Fal. Bardolph, follow him : a tapster is a good 
trade: an old cloak makes a new jerkin; a 
withered scrvingman a fresh tapster: Go; 

Bard. It is a life that I have desired ; I will 
thiiTe. [Erit Bard. 

Pitt. O base HungarJau^ wight ! wilt thou 
the spigot wield ? 

yya. He was gotten in drink: Is not the 
hnmour conceited ? [His mind is not heroic, 
and there's the humour of it.*] 

Pal. I am glad I am so acquit of this tinder- 
box ; his thefts were too open ; his filching was 
like an tinskilful singer, — he k- 'ne. 

y^m. The good humour is •. - ... at a mi- 
nute's rest.* 

Pis(. Convey, the wise it call : Steal I fob ; n 
fico for the phrase. 

Pal. Well, sirs, I am almost out at heels. 

P\*t. Why then let kibes ensue. 

Pal. There is no remedy ; I must coney-catch ; 
I must shift. 

Pitt. Young ravens must have food. 

Pal. Wliich of you know Ford of this town * 

Pitt. I ken the wiglit; he is of substance 

Pal. My honest lads, I will tell yon what I 
am about. 

qnotatioai frtwB Sedley and others, that a 
a brate (iatbing fellov. 
» Wnlk, mmd lire, in : 

fl "frt'lt tni U-nf." • 


thet ir. 


•• Sv *■ — /- .-- 

Would swear it 

h-- '.low. ■ 

c . .:i braekrt* was inserted 

A See fucn.1 New Readinps. p. ISS. 

tmllf-roei was 


uwicd by 

■ -.oritT (or 


jrhirh has sop* 

• epi. 

bj Th09kald, 

Act I.] 


[Scene IV. 

Fist. Two Yards, and more. 

Fal. No quips now, Pistol: Indeed I am iia 
the waist two yards about ; but I am now about 
no waste ; I am about tlu-ift. Briefly, I do mean 
to make love to Ford's -wife ; I spy entertainment 
in her ; she discoui-ses, she carves,''she gives the 
leer of invitation : I can construe the action of 
her familiar style ; and tlie hardest voice of her 
behaviour, to be English'd rightly, is, I am sir 
John Falstaff's. 

Fist. ]Ie hath studied her will, and translated 
her -will, ''out of honesty into English. 

Nym. The anchor is deep : Will that humour 

Fal. Now, the report goes she has all the rule 
of her husband's purse; he hath a legion of 

Fist. As many devils entertain; and, 'To her 
boy,' say I. 

Ni/m. The humour rises ; it is good : humour 
me the angels. 

Fal. I have writ me here a letter to her : and 
here another to Page's wife ; who even now gave 
me good eyes too ; examin'd my parts with most 
judicious eyliads; sometimes the beam of her 
view gilded my foot, sometimes my portly belly. 

Fist. Then did the sun on dunghill shine. 

Ni/m. I thank thee for that humour. 

Fal. 0, she did so course o'er my exteriors 
with such a greedy intention, that the appetite 
of her eye did seem to scorch me up like a burn- 
ing glass ! Here's another letter to her : she 
bears the purse too ; she is a region in Guiana, 
all gold and bounty. I will be cheater to them 
both, and they shall be exchequers to mc ; they 
shall be my East and West Indies, and I will 
trade to them both. Go, bear thou this letter to 
mistress Page ; and thou this to mistress Ford : 
we will thrive, lads, we will thrive. 

Fist. Shall I sir Pandarus of Troy become. 
And by my side wear steel ? then, Lucifer take 

Ni/m. I will run no base humour : here, take 
the humour letter; I will keep the 'haviour of 

""She discourses, she carves," so the folio; "she 
craves," in the quarto. FalstafF does not use the word in 
the sense of helping guests at table. In ' Love's Labour's 
Lost,' Art V. Scene ii., Biron says of Boyet, " He can carve 
too, and lisp," evidently in reference to jiis courtier-like 
accomplishments. Mr. Hunter and Mr. Dyce have given 
several instances ot carve being used in the sense of "some 
form of action vrhich indicated the desire that the person 
whom it addressed should be attentive and propitious;" 
and we agree with the definition of Mr. Hunter. 

b The ordinary reading is " he hath studied her well, and 
translated her well." The folio gives will, in the two in- 
stances. Mr. Dyce says will is an evident misprint, and 
that the quarto has well." Mr. White prints "studied her 
well, and translated her will." The Cambridge editors sug- 
gest " studied her well, and translated her ill." 

c So the folio. The quarto reads " she hath legions of 
angels." But Mrs. Ford has only the rule of the purse- 
not the possession of it. 


Fal. Hold, sirrah, [to Rob.] bear you these 
letters tightly ;■'' 
Sail like my pinnace'' to these golden shores. — 
Rogues, hence, avaunt ! vanish like hail-stones, 

Trudge, plod away i' the hoof; seek shelter, 

pack ! 
Falstaff will learn the humour of the age,"' 
French thrift, you rogues ; myself, and skirted 
page. [E.reii?!t Falstapf a?/d Robin. 
l^i-if. Let vultures gripe thy guts ! for gourd 
and fullam holds. 
And high and low beguile the rich and poor ;'' 
Tester I'll have in pouch, when thou shalt lack. 
Base Phrygian Tui-k ! 

Npn, I have operations,* which l)e humours 
of revenge. 
Fist Wilt thou revenge ? 
Npii. By welkin, and her stars ! 
Fisf. With wit, or steel ? 
K;///i/. With both the humours, I : 
I will discuss the humour of this love to Ford.' And I to Page shall eke unfold, 
IIow Falstaff, varlet vile, 
His dove will prove, his gold will hold, 
And his soft couch defile. 
N)/w. My humour shall not cool: I will in- 
cense Ford to deal with poison ; I wiU possess 
him with yellowness, for the revolt of mien sis 
dangerous : that is ray true humour. 

Fiat. Thou art the Mars of malcontents : I 
second thee ; troop on. [Exemit. 

SCENE IV.— ^ room in Dr. Cains'* House. 
Enter Mrs. Quickly, Simplb, and Rugby. 
Quick. What : John Rugby ! — I pray thee. 

■* Tightly— \yx'\&\i\y , cleverly. 

1' Pinnace — a small vessel attached to, or in company 
with, a larger. 

e The folio has honour ; the quarto, humour. 

d Gourd, fullam, hiyh and low, were cant terms for falxe 
dice. Pistol will have liis tester in pouch, by cheating at 

The quarto reads, " I have operations in my head." 

f The editors have altered "Ford" to "Page," and 
"Page" to "Ford," because "the very reverse of this 
happens." Stecvens says, "Shakspere is frequently guilty 
of these little forpelfulnesses." And yet the quarto gives 
us the reading which the editors adopt. But had Shak- 
spere, who was not quite so forgetful as they represent, no 
reason for making the change ? Nym suggests the scheme 
of betraying Fal.stalf, and it was natural that Ford being 
first mentioned by Sir John, and Ford's wife being most the 
subject of conversation, Nym should first propose to " dis- 
cuss the humour of this love" to Ford. How the worthies 
arranged their plans afterwards has little to do with the 
matter: and it is to be observed that they are together 
when the disclosure takes place to boili husbands. 

e Mien. This is mine in the folio; but mien was thus 
spelt. By "the revolt of mien" Nym may intend the 
change of complexion— the yellowness of jealousy. Or he 
may intend by " the revolt of mine," my revolt. The 
matter is not worth discussing. 

Aci I.) 


[SctSE IV. 

go to the casement, and see if you can see my 
master, master Doctor Caius, coming: if he do, 
i'f;utli, and find any body in the house, here will 
be an old abusing of God's patience and the 
king's English. 

Rug. I'll go watch. [ifc'x/V Hugby. 

Quick-. Go ; and we '11 have a posset for 't soon 
at night, in faith, at the latter end of a sea-coal 
fire. An honest, willing, kind fellow, as ever 
servant shall come in house withal ; and, I war- 
rant you, no tell-tale, nor no breed-bate:' his 
worst fault is that he is given to prayer ; he is 
something peevish that way; but nobody but 
has his fault; — but let that pass. Peter Simple 
you say your name is ? 

Sim. Ay, for fault of a better. 

Quick. And master Slender 's your master ? 

Sim. Ay, forsooth. 

Quick. Does he not ^v ear a great round beard, 
like a glover's paring knife ? 

Sim. No, foi-sooth : he hath but a little wee 
face, with a little yellow beard ; a cane-coloured 

Quick. A softly-sprighted man, is he not ? 

Sim. Ay, forsooth : but he is as tall a uuin of 
his hands as any is between this and his head ; 
he hath fought with a warrencr. 

Quick. How say you ? — O, I should remember 
him : Does he not hold up his head, as it were ? 
and strut in his gait ? 

Sim. Yes, indeed, does he. 

Quick. "Well, heaven send Anne Page no worse 
fortune ! Tell master parson Evans I will do 
what I can for your master : Anne is a good girl, 
and I wish — 

Re-enter Rugby. 

Rmi/. Out, alas ! here comes my master. 

Quick. We sliall all be shent :' Run in here, 
good young man ; go into this closet. \_Shufs 
Simple in the closet.'] He will not stay long. — 
Wliat, John Rugby ! John, what John, I say ! 
Go, John, go inquire for thy master; I doubt 
he be not well, that he comes not home : — and 
down, down, adown-a, &c. \_Sings. 

» Bale is ttrife. It i* " debate." 

b The ordinary rcailiiiR is '• a Cai/i-coloured beard." Cain 
and Judas, according to Theobald, were reprnentcd in the 
old Upettriei with yellow beards. But surely the represen- 
tation was not so general as to become the popular desig- 
naiion of a colour: whereas ihe colour of cane is intelli- 
gible to ail. The quarto confinns this : — 

" Quick. He has as it were a irAiy-coloured beard. 
Sim. Indeed my master's beard is Arane-coloured." 

The spellinj; of the folio is, however, " Cainc-coloured." 
c Shent, roughly handled. 

Enter Doctor Cars. 

Caius. Vat is vou siiic' ? I do not like desc 
toys; Pray you, go and vetch me in my closet 
t/it boilicr terd ; a box, a green-a box ; Do in- 
tend vat I speak ? a green-a box. 

Quick. Ay, forsooth, I'll fetch it you. I am 
glad he went not in himself: if he had fomid the 
young man, he would have been horn-mad . 


Cuius. Fe,fe,fc,/e.' viafoi, it fait fort chaud. 
Je m^en cais a la Cour, — la grand'' affiiire. 

Quirk. Is it this, sir ? 

Caius. Oui/ ; tuette le au hiou i>"(K( i ; Bepeche 
quickly : — Vere is dat knave Rugby ? 

Quick. What, John Rugby ! John ! 

Rug. Here, sir. 

Caius. You are John Rugby, :md you are Jack 
Rugby : Come, take-a your rapier, and come 
after my heel to de court. 

Rug. *T is ready, sir, here in the porch. 

Caius. By my trot, I tarrj- too long ; — Od's 
me! Quay jouhlie? dere is some simples in 
my closet dat I vill not for the varld I shall 
leave behind. 

Quick. All me ! he '11 find the young man 
there, and be mad ! 

Caius. diaUc, diable ! vat is in my closet ? — 
Villainy ! larron ! \_Pulling Simple oul.\ Rugby, 
my rapier. 

Quick. Good master, be content. 

Caius. Verefore shall I be contenl-a ? 

Quick. The young man is an honest man. 

Caius. Vat shall dc honest man do in my 
closet ? dere is no honest man dat shall come in 
my closet. 

Quick. I beseech you, be not so flegmatiok , 
hear the truth of it : He came of an errand to 
me from parson Hugh. 

Caius. Veil. 

Sim. Ay, forsooth, to desire her to — 

Quick. Peace, I pray you. 

Caius. Peace-a your tongue :— S|)cak-a your 

Sim. To desire this honest gentlewoman, your 
maid, to speak a good word to Mrs. Anne Page 
for my master, in the way of marriage. 

Quick. This is all, indeed, la; but I'll m'er 
put my finger in llie fire, and need not. 

Caius. Sir Hugh send-a you ?— Rugby, Laille: 
me some paper : Tarry you a little-a while. 


Quick. I am glad he is so quiet : if he had 
been thoroughly moved you should have heard 
lum so loud and so melancholy.— But notwith- 
standing, man, I '11 do your master what good I 


Act I.] 


[Scene IV 

can : and the very yea and the no is, the Freucli 
doctor, my master,— I may call him my master, 
look you, for I keep his house; and I wash, 
wring, brew, biike, scour, dress meat and drink, 
make the beds, and do all myself : — 

Sim. 'Tis a great charge to conic under one 
body's hand. 

(luick. Are you avis'd o'that ? you shall find 
it a great charge : and to be up early and down 
late ; — but notwithstanding, (to tell you in your 
ear ; I would have no words of it ;) my master 
himself is in love with mistress Anne Page : but 
notwithstanding that, I know Anne's mind, — 
that's neither here nor there. 

Cuius. You jack'nape ; give-a dis letter to sir 
Hugh ; by gar, it is a challenge : I will cut his 
troat in de park ; and I viU teach a scurvy jack- 
a-nape priest to meddle or make : — you may be 
gone ; it is not good you tarry here : — by gar, I 
vil cut all his two stones ; by gar, he shall not 
have a stone to trow at his dog. [T^xit Simple. 

(luick. Alas, he speaks but for his friend. 

Cuius. It is no matter-a for dat : — do not you 
tell-a me dat I shall have Anne Page for myscK? 
— by gar, I will kill de Jack Priest ; and I have 
appointed mine host of de Jarlerre to measure 
our weapon : — by gar, I vill myself have Anne 

Quick. Sir, the maid loves you, and all shall 
be well : we must give folks leave to prate : 
What, the good-jer! 

Cuius. Kugby, come to dc court vid me : — By 

gar, if I have not Anne Page, I shall turn your 

head out of my door : — Follow my heels, Rugby. 

{^Exeunt Caius u?id IIugby. 

Quick. You shall have An fools-head of your 
own. No, I know Anne's mind for that : never 
a woman in Windsor knows more of Anne's 
mind than I do : nor can do moi'e than I do 
with her, I thank lieavcn. 

Fent. {Within.'] AVho 's withhi tlicrc ? ho! 

Quick. Who 's there, 1 trow F Come near the 
house, I pray you. 

Enter Fenton. 

Fent. How now, good woman ; how dost 
thou ? 

Quick. The better that it pleases your good 
worship to ask. 

Fent. What news ? how does pretty mistress 
Anne ? 

Quick. In truth, sir, and she is pretty, and 
honest, and gentle ; and one that is your friend, 
I can tell you that by the way ; I praise heaven 
for it. 

Fent. Shall I do any good, thmk'st thou ? 
Shall I not lose my suit ? 

Quick. Troth, sir, all is in his hands above : 
but notwithstanding, master Fcnton, I'll be 
sworn on a book, she loves you : — Have not 
your worship a wart above your eye ? 

Fe?it. Yes, marry, have I ; what of that ? 

Quick. Well, thereby hangs a tale ; — good 
faith, it is such another Nan ; — but, I detest, an 
honest maid as ever broke bread ; — We had an 
hour's talk of that wart : —I shall never laugh 
but in that maid's company ! But, indeed, she 
is given too much to allichoUy and musing : But 
for you — Well, go to. 

Fciit. Well, I shall see her to-day ; Hold, 
there 's money for thee ; let me have thy voice 
in my behalf : if thou seest her before me, com- 
mend me. 

Quick. Will I ? i'faith, that we wiU ; and I 
will tell your worshij) more of the wart, the next 
time we have confidence ; and of other wooers. 

Fent. Well, farewell ; I am iu great haste 
now. [&//. 

Quick. Farewell to your worship. — Tmly, an 
honest gentleman ; but Anne loves him not ; for 
I know Anne's mind as well as another does : — 
Out iipon't ! what have I forgot ? [Exit 


Sc. 111. p. 155.— "Steal at a minute's rest." 
" Steal at a minim's rest." — Sinqcr. 
The same correction had been proposed by Mr. Laiigton. 
IJut to rest, to set up a rest, was a phrase of card-playing, 
equivalent to standing upon tlie game. The ]>layer was 
aUoncd time to make up liis mind. Kardolpli's thefts were 
too open; he did not deliberate. Nym would pause. We 
believe the original reading, which we give, is right. If 
Nym only paused while he could count two— the time 
of a minim, he would be as rash as Hardolph. Mr. 
Collier's ' Corrector ' anticipated (J adopted) Langton and 

Sc. in p. 15G. — 'She is a region in Guiana, all gold and 
" Slie is a re;,'ion in Guiana, all gold and beauly."— Collier. 
In favour of the correctior, Mr. Collier says, '• Guiana was 
famous for its beauty as well as for its gold, and thus the 
parallel between it and Mrs. Page is more exact." lUit 
Falstair nowhere speaks of Mrs. Page as a beau'.y. He 
writes to her, " you are not young." She herself says, 
"Have I 'scaped love-letters in the holiday time of my 
beautj', and am I now a subject for them?" Falstafl 
thinks only of her money, and her boui-..ty in parting with 
it. "She bears the purse too." 


[Master of ^ence.] 


' Scene I.— "Sir Hwjh, persuade me not." 

We find several instances in Shakspcre of n 
priest being called Sir: as, Sir Hugh in ibis 
comedy ; Sir Oliver in As You Like It ; Sir Topas 
in Twelftli Night; and Sir Nathaniel in Love's 
Labour's Lost. — In a curious treatise quoted by 
Totld, entitled 'A Decacordon of Ten Quodlibeti- 
Ciill Questions conceruiug Relig^ion and State, kc, 
newly imprinted, 16o2,' we have the following 
magniloquent explanation of the matter : — 

"By the laws armorial, civil, and of arnn, a 
Priest in his place in civil conversation is always 
before any Esquire, as beiu;,' a Knight's fdlow by 
his holy orders : and the third of the throe iSVr<, 
which only were in request of old (no baron, vis- 
count, earl, nor marquis being then in use) to wit. 
Sir King, Sir Knight, and Sir Priest ; this word 
Dominus, in Latin, being a noun substjintive com- 
mon to them all. as Dominus mens Hex, Dominus 
meua Joab, Dominus Sacerdos : and afterwards, 
when honours began to take their subordination 
one under m Hher, and titles of princely dignity 
to be hereditary to Fucceedini,' posterity (which 
happened upon the fall of the Roman empire) then 
Dominus wa< in Latin applied to all noble and 
generous hearts, even from the king to the -meanest 
Priest, or temporal person of gentle bloo<l, cojit- 
armour perfect, and ancestrj-. But .Sir in Encrlish 
was restrained to these four ;" Sir Knight, Sir Priest, 
Sir Graduate, and in common speech Sir Esquire : 
so aa always since distinction of titles were. Sir 
Priest was ever the second." 

Fuller, b hia Church History, gives us a more 

homely version of the title. After saying that 
anciently there were in England more Sirs than 
Knights, he adds, " Such priests as have the 
addition of Sir before their Christian name were 
men not graduated in the university, being in 
orders, but not in degrees, whilst others ontituIe<l 
masters had cnmmeuccd in the arts." In a note 
in Smith's Antiquities of Westminster, Mr. John 
Sidney Hawkins gives us the following explanation 
of the passage in Fuller : — 

" It was, probably, only a translation of the Latin 
dominus, which in strictness nieiins, when ajiplied 
to persons un<lor the degree of knighthood, nothing 
more than master, or, as it is now written, Mr. 
In the university i>oi-son8 would mnk acconling to 
their academical degrees oidy, anil there was, con- 
sequently, nodanger of confusion between baroueta 
and knights and those of the clergy, but to preserve 
the distinction which Fuller points out, it seems 
to have been thought\ry to translate 
dominus, in this case, by the appellative Sir ; for 
had magister been use<I instead of dominus, or 
had dominus been rendered master, non-Rrnduates, 
to whom it had been api))ied, would have been 
mistaken for magistri artium, masters of art.s." 

* Scene I.—" TIu luce is the fresh fish ; the salt fish 
is an old coat." 

This speech is an heraldric puzzle. It is pretty 
clear that " the dozen white lucea " apply tu the 
arms of the Lucy family. In Feme's Blazon of 



Gentry, 1586, we have, " signs o£ the coat should 
Bomething agree with the name. It is the coat of 
Geffray Lord Lucy. He did bear gules, three hides 
hariant [hauriant] argent." Tlie luce is a pike, — 
"the fresh fish;" not the "familiar beast to man." 
So far is clear; but why "the salt fish is an old 
coat" is not so intelligible. 

Since our first edition we have received an in- 
genious e.\planation from a correspondent, "A 
Lover of Heraldry." 

"The arms of the Lucies (now quartered by the 
Duke of Northumberland), are gules, three lucies 
haui'iant, argent. The fish is called hauriant in 
heraldry when it is drawn erect, or in the act of 
springing up to draw in the air. Now Shallow is 
not a very exact herald, and does not apply the 
special term hauriant to the luce, but the term 
saltant or sail ant, \\\iio\i the same thing, 
but is only used of beasts, like lions, &c. The 
first part of the sentence is merely in answer to 
what Sir Hugh has just said, explaining what the 
luce is. ' The luce is the fresh fish,' i.e. the large 

in. this kingdom. We subjoin a representation from 
a beautiful specimen in the British Museum. 


fresh-water fish, the pike. Then 
he goes on in conclusion, but with- 
out iiny opposition of the latter 
part of his sentence to the first, — 
' The salt fish (i.e. the fish or luce 
saltant) is an old coat.' Without 
taking it as a strict and formed 
adjective, in Shallow's mouth the 
salt luccis may mean the saltant 

8 Scene I. — "/ heard saij he was 
out-run on CotsalW 

The Cotswold Hills in Glouces- 
tershire, like many other places, 
were anciently famous for rural 
sports. In the Second Part of 
Henry IV., Shallow mentions 
"Will Squele, a Cotswold man," 
as one of his four swinge buckler.s. 
But Cotswold subsequently be- 
came famous for " the yearly cele- 
bration of Mr. Robert Dover's 
Olympick Games." 

* Scene I. — " Seven rjroats in 

mill sixpences." 
How Slender could be robbed 
of two shillings and fourpence in 
sixpences would require his own 
ingenuity to explain. The mill 
sixpences coined in 1561 and 1562 
were the first milled money used 

5 Scene I. — " / had rather than forty shillings, I 
had my book of songs and sonnets here." 

The exquisite bit of nature of poor Slender 
wanting his book of Songs and Sonnets, and his 
book of lUddle.s, to help hiin out in his talk with 
Anne Page, is not found in the original Sketch. 

6 Scene I. — "Master of fence.'" 
Steevens informs us that " master of defence, oi 
this occasion, does not simply 
mean a professor of the art of 
fencing, but a person who had 
taken his master's degree in 
it;" and he adds, that in this 
art there were three degrees, 
a master, a provost, and a 
scholar. We doubt whether 
Slender, " on this occasion," 
meant very precisely to in- 
dicate the quality of the pro- 
fessor with whom he played 
at sword and dagger. 

^ Scene I. — "Sacherson loose." 
The inquiry of Slender "be 
there bears i' the town ? " 
furnishes a proof of the uni- 
versality of the practice of 
bear-baiting. In the time of 
Henry VIII. the bear gardens 
on Bank-side were open on 
Sundays; and the price of 
admission was a halfpenny. 
That it was a barbarous cus- 
tom we can have no doubt. 
Master Lancbam, in his let- 
ters from Kenihvorth, tells us 
that when the bear was loose 
from the dogs, it was a matter 
of goodly relief to him to 
shake his ears twice or thrice. 
;ickcrson was a celebrated bear ex- 
ibited in Paris Garden in South- 
rark. In a collection of epigrams by 
ir John Davie.s we have the lines: — 

Publius, a student of tlie common law, 
o Paris-garden dotli liimself withdr.iw ; — 
caving old Ployden, Dyer, and Broke alone, 
'o see old Harry Ilunkes and Sacarson." 

The following representation of 
" Sackei'son loose " has been com- 
posed by Mr. Buss upon the authority 
of a description in Strutt's ' Sports 
and Pastimes.' If Slender had 
"taken him by the chain," Sackersou 


and Slender mvist have been et|ual8 iu simplicity. 
Slenders triumph of manhood over the womou, 
who "so cried and shrieked at it," is exquisite. 
The passage is wonderfully improved from the 
corresponding one in the original sketch : — 

"Stem. What, huve you bcarj in your town, mistrc!is 
Anne, your Jogs bark so. 

Jnne. I cntmot tell master Slender, I think there be. 

Stfn. Ha, how say you f I warrant you're afraiii of a bear 
Ift loose, are you not ? 

Anne. Yci, tru.<t me. 

SUn. Now that's meat and drink to nio. I'll run to a 
bear, and take her by the muzzle, you never saw the like. 
But indeed I cannot blame you, for they are marvcllout 
rough things. 

Anne. Will you gc in to dinner, master Slender! The 
meat stays fur you. 

Slen. No faith, not I, I thank you. I rannot abide the 
smell of hot meat, ne'er since I broke n^y shin. Ml tell you 
how it came, by my troth. A fencer and I played three 
venies for a dish of stewed prunes, and I with tny ward 
defending my head, he hit my shin; yes, faith." 


-A \ 

[Sackcrton loose.] 


I.v the original editions of this comedy wo have 
no dascriptiona of the sceno.a, such as, ' Street in 
Windsor,' ' Windsor Park,' ' Field near Frogmore.' 
These necesjiary cxphuiations were added by Rowo ; 
but we may collect frouj the text that Shak«pere 
had a jjerfect knowledire of the localities of Wind- 
sor. Having the ad. .f the ^ 1 
experience, wo sbn!! ; ■ . f..!l..w t u 
these paasagi :iy miuute 
desi-riptious, - was the 
Windsor of our ancc.-tors, and such aa it presented 
itself to Shakspere's observation. 

Although we have rea-wn to believe that the 
action of this play initrlit • ' ' ' ' 1 

to the time of Kliz.-»b«tli. \ • 

of thechani'-ters.istiioy ii"V. s 

of 'ho hi-»"ri-r>.! j't. s'of H. my IV., i: - 

:i about two centuri>-s bel'ore 

^ Wo have felt it necessnrj', 

therefore, in the arrangement of the illustntions, 

to give some notion of the Windsor of the time of 

Henry IV. ; an<l the very tasteful designs which 

CouEDiES.— Vtir,. I. M 

have been made by Mr. Creswick have especial 
reference to this object. At that period tlio town 
of Windsor no doubt consisted of sc;ittorcd houses, 
surrounded with trees and gnrdfiis, aj>|>roacliing 
the castle, but not encroaching upon the ancient 
fortifications. The line of the walls and circular 
towers on til 'id sotith .-.n, 

wxs then uii 1; and i. ■ . i.y 

which the castlu w.-li then sutniuiiiii-il on all fides 
was ojKMi. In th'-' time of Heur)- IV., Windsor, 
although in many respects splendid as a palace, 
must externally have presented the chnractir of a 
very strong Its tcrnices, which were com- 
menceil by Elizabeth, and finished by Charles II., 
did not conceal the stern grandi-ur of the walls 
standing boldly ujion the rock of chalk. The 
windows of the towers were little n^ore than loop- 
hole.*; .and the only appearance of natural oniaiucnt 
was prob.'djly the clu.stcring ivy in which the rook 
and starling had long built tmmole*.te<l. The site 
of the ]>rc.sent splendid chnjicl of St George was 
occupietl bv a meaner edifici-, which E<lward IV 


pulled down, suDstltuting that exquisite gem which 
is now amongst our best preserved ecclesiastical 
monuments. The buildings which were added by 
Henrj' VII., and by Elizabeth, at the western end 
of the north front of the U])per Ward, were of a 
more ornamental character than the older parts of 
the castle, indicating the establishment of an order 
of things ill which the monarch and the peojjle 
could dwell more in security. 

We shall here very briefly dcE^cribe the Illustra- 
tions which have reference to the castle and town 
of Windsor. 

The architectural Illustration at the head of the 
Introductory Notice exhibits the gallery which was 
built by Elizibeth in 1583. Sir Jeffrey Wyatville 
has preserved this building almost unaltered. The 
few changes which he has introduced in the lower 
part have had the effect of giving it a character of 
unity. Our view exhibits it as it stood before the 
late improvements. 

We h ive imagined Page's house as standing in 
the Ilii^h Street, a little to the north of the present 
Town Hall, but on the opposite side. The descrip- 
tion of the first scene of Act I , as we received it 
from Rowe, i.s, ' AVindsor — before Page's house ; ' 
bub as Anne Page enters with wme, it would seem 
more proper the charactei's should assemble 
in the garden front than in the street, and Mr. 
Cresvvick's design has therefore been made upon 
this iirincii)le. The street front of Pace's hou.=e 

is exhibited at the head of Act II. A market 
cross is shewn in this design. That of Windsor 
was erected in 13S0, but demolished during the 
civil wars of Charles I. The very ancient church 
(see Act IV. Scene VI ) which stood on the ea.5t 
side of the street, and which is represented in our 
sketch, was pulled down about 1814. The houses, 
it must be observed, of this design, as well as of 
the other street scenes, are imaginary; for Windsor, 
as compared with other places of antiquity, is most 
siugulaidy deficient in relics of our old domestic 
architecture, there being very few houses in the 
town more than a century old, and of those few 
which may date from the beginning of the seven- 
teenth century, the external character has been 
changed during our own recollection. The design 
at the head of Act III. has its locality in the 
ancient Peascod Street ; from the lower part of 
which the round tower, or keep, is a very con- 
spicuous and picturesque object. We, of course, 
present this remarkable building as it was seen 
before the recent improvements. The locality of 
Ford's house, at the head of Act IV., is fixed in 
Thames Street. What we imagined a quarter of 
a century ago, has been accomplished. The mean 
houses which stood on the west and north-west 
sides of the street have been removed, and the 
fine old tower at the north-western angle has been 
cleared to its baso. 


^ .-•.•v' 


[" Here's the twin brother of thy letter."] 


SCENE \.— Before Page'* lious^. 

Enter Miiiress Page, tci(A a Letter. 

Mrs. Page. What ! have I 'scaped love-letters 
ill the holy-day time of my beauty, and am I 
now a subject for them ? Let me see : [Reads. 

' Ask me no reason why I love you; for though love usr 
reason for his precisian, he admits hira not for his counsel- 
Icr: » You are not young, no more am I ; go to then, there's 
sympathy: you are merry, so am I; Ha! ha! then there's 
more sympathy : you love sack, and so do I ; Would you 
desire better sympathy f Let it suffice thee, mistress Page, 
(at the least, if the love of a soldier can suffice,) that I lore 
thee. I will not say, pily me, 'lis not a soldier-like phrase; 
but I s'ty. love roe. By me. 

Thine own true knight. 

By day or night, 

Or any kind of light, 

With all his might. 

For thee to fight, John Falslaff.'^ 

What a Herod of Jewry is this! — O wicked. 

» John-on would read phytieian instead of precisian ; 
not Farmer, as Sir. Collier says. Farintr only adopted it. 
Johnson, in his ' Dictionary. 'published before hii Shakspere, 
defines ;>recui(in as " cue who limits or restrains." quoting 
this passage as an authority. The yreeitian of Shakspere's 
lime was the same as the puritan, to whom was commonly 
ascribed the mere show of sanctity : '• I will set my coun- 
tenance like a precisian." 

b The corresponding letter in the quarto furnishes a 
striking example of the careful mode in which this play was 
elaborated from the first Sketch: — 

" Mistress Page, I love you. Ask me no reason, because 
they're impossible to allege. You are fair, and I am fat. 
You love s^ck, so do I. As I am sure I have no mind but 
to hjve, so I know you have no heart but to grant. A soldier 
doth not use many words where he knows a letter may serve 
for a sentence. I lOve you, and so I leave you. 

" Yours, Sir John Falstaff.' 

yi 2 

wicked world!— one that is well uigh worn to 
pieces with age, to shew himself a young gallant ! 
What animweighed behaviour hath this Flemish 
drunkard ' picked (with the devil's name) out of 
my conversation, that he dares in this manner 
assay me ? Why, he hath not been thrice in my 
company ! — What should I say to him ? — I was 
then frugal of my mirth :— heaven forgive me! 
Why I'll exhibit a bill in the parliament for the 
putting down of men.* How shall I be revenged 
on him? for revenged I will be, as sure as his 
guts are made of puddings. 

Enter Mistress Ford. 

Mrs. Ford. Mistress Page ! trust mc, I was 
going to your house ! 

Mrs. Page. And trust mc, T was coming to 
you. You look very ill. 

Mrs. Ford. Nay, I'll ne'er believe that; I 
have to shew to the contrary. 

Mrs. Page. 'Faith, but you do, in my mind. 

Mrs. Ford. Well, I do, then ; yet, 1 say, I 
could shew you to the contrary ; 0, mistress 
Page, give mc some counsel ! 

Mrs. Page. What's the matter, woman ? 

Mrs. Ford. woman, if it were not for one 
trifling respect, I could come to such honour ! 

» Theobald would read Jat men, because the quarto has 
" 1 shall trust /u< men the worse while I live, for his sake." 
The folio has a corresponding passage to this— " I fhall 
think the worse of /a< men, as long as I have an eye to 
make difference of men's liking;" — and the quarto has no 
parall-.l to "a bill in parliament. 


Act II.] 


[Scene 1. 

llrs. Pdfje. Haug the trifle, •woman ; take the 
honour: "\Vliat is it? — dispense with trifles; — 
what is it ? 

Mrs. Ford. If I would but go to hell for an 
ctciTiul moment, or so, I could be knighted. 

Mrs. Page. 'Wliat ? thou liest !— Sir Alice 
Ford! These knights will hack;" and so thou 
shouldst not alter the article of thy gentry. 

Mrs. Ford. We bum day-light : ''—here, read, 
read : — perceive how I might be knighted. — I 
shall think the worse of fat men, as long as I 
have an eye to make difi'erenee of men's liking : 
And yet he would not swear ; praised women's 
modesty; and gave such orderly and well-be- 
haved reproof to all uncomeliness, — that I would 
have sworn his disposition would have gone to 
the truth of his words : but they do no more 
adhere and keep place together than the huu- 
dicdth psalm to the tune of Green sleeves? 
What tempest, I trow, threw this whale with so 
many tuns of oil in his belly, ashore at Windsor ? 
How shall I be revenged on him? I think the 
l)est way were to entertain him with hope, tiU 
the wicked fire of lust have melted him in his 
own grease. — Did you ever hear the like ? 

Mrs. Page. Letter for letter ; but that the 
name of Page and Ford differs ! — To thy great 
comfort in this mystery of ill opinions, here's 
the twin-brother of thy letter : but let thine 
inherit first ; for, I protest, mine never shall. 
I warrant lie hath a thousand of these letters, 
writ with blank space for different names, (sure 
more,) and these are of the second edition : He 
will print them out of dou])t ; for he cares not 
wliat lie puts into the press when he would put 
us two. I had rather be a giantess, and He 
under mount Pclion. Well, I will find you 
twenty lascivious turtles, ere one chaste man. 

Mrs. Ford. Why, this is the very same; the 
very hand, the very words : What doth he think 
of us ? 

Mrs. Page. Nay, I know not : It makes me 
almost ready to wi'angle with mine own honesty. 
I'll entertain myself Idee one that I am not 
accpiaintcd withal; for, sure, unless he know 
some strain ■= in mc, that I know not myself, he 
would never have boarded mc in this fury. 

Mrs. Ford. Boarding, call you it ? I'll be sure 
to keep him above deck. 

n Will hack. James I. would make fifty knights before 
breakfist; and therefore "these kniglits will hack" — will 
become common ; and for this cause the honour of beinp; 
"S:r Alice Ford" would not "alter the article of thy gentry " 
— would not add any lustre to thy gentry. The passage was 
added in the folio, and it furnishes a proof that the play was 
enlarged after the accession of James. 

b IVc hum rl(ii/-liglil — we waste our time like those who 
use "lamps hy (iiiij." See Romeo and Juliet, Act I. Sc. IV. 

c Strain — turn, humour, disposition. 


Mrs. Page. So will I ; if he come under my 
hatches I'll never to sea again. Let's be re- 
veng'd on him : let's appoint him a meeting ; 
give him a show of comfort in his suit ; and Uad 
him on with a fine baited delay, tiD he hath 
pawn'd his horses to mine Host of the Garter. 

Mrs. Ford. Nay, I will consent to act any 
villainy against him, that may not sully the 
chariness of our honesty. 0, that my husband 
saw this letter ! it would give eternal food to his 

Mrs. Page. Why, look, where he comes ; and 
my good man too ; he's far from jealousy as I 
am from giving him cause ; and that, I Lope, is 
an unraeasurable distance. 

Mrs. Ford. You are the happier woman. 

Mrs. Page. Let's consult together against this 
greasy knight : Come hither. [.1^1'Si/ retire. 

Enter Ford, Pistol, Page, atid Nym. 

Ford. Well, I hope it be not so. 

Pist. Hope is a cui'taU-'' dog in some affairs : 
Sir John afi'ects thy wife. 

Ford. IVhy, sir, my wife is not young. 

Pist. He wooes both high and low, both lich 
and poor, 
Both young and old, one with another. Ford ; 
He loves thy galley-mawfry ; Ford, perpend. 

Furd. Love my wife ? 

Pist. With liver biu-niug hot : Prevent, or go 
Like sir Action he, witli Ilin?wood at tliv 

heels : — 
0, odious is the name ! 

Ford. What name, sir ? 

Pist. The horn, I say : Farewell. 
Take heed ; have open eye ; for thieves do foot 

by night : 
Take heed, ere summer comes, or cuckoo birds 

do sing. — 
Away, sir corporal Nym. — 
Believe it, Page ; he speaks sense. '' 

[_Exit Pistol. 

Ford. I will be patient; I will find out this. 

Np7i. And this is true; [to Page.] I like 
not the humour of lyiug. He hath wronged me 
in some humours : I should have borue the 
humoui-ed letter to her; but I have a sword, 
and it shall bite upon my necessity. He loves 
your Avife ; there's the short and the long. My 

n Curtall-it'iff. This is not literally a dog without a tail, 
as it is expl.iined generally; nor is it spelt curtail. The 
" curtal dog" is, like the " curtal friar," — an expression of 
contempt. The worthless dog may have a short tail, and 
the Franciscan friar might wear a short garment; and thus 
they each may be curtailed. But the word came to express 
some general defect, and is here used in that sense. 

t> Pistol confirms what Nym has been saying, aside, to 

Acr II ; 


(>. r^.- t. 

nauic is corporal Nvin; I speak, ami I avouch. 
'Tis true :— my uaiue is Nym, and Falst;iff loves 
your wife. — Adieu ! I love not the huiuour of 
bread and cheese. Adieu. [Exit Nym. 

P<T//('. TA>' Anmour of it, quoth 'a! here's a 
fellow frights huiuour out of his wits. 

Ford. 1 will seek out Falslaff. 

Pagf. I never heard such a dniwling, afleci- 
iug rogue. 

Ford. If I do fiud it, well. 

Page. I ^nll not believe such a Cataiaii," 
though the priest o' the town commended him 
for a true man. 

Ford. 'T was a good seimible fellow : Well. 

Page. How now, Meg ? 

Mrs. Page. AVhithcr go you, George ? — Hark 

Mrs. Ford. How now, sweet Frank ? why art 
thou melancholy ? 

Ford. I melancholy ! I am not melancholy. 
— Get you home, go. 

Mrs. Ford. 'Faith, thou hast some crotchets 
in thy head now. — Will you go, mistress Page ? 

Mrs. Page. Have with yoii. — You'll come to 

' f - T k, who comes yonder: 

^'cr to this paltry knight. 

[Aside to Mrs. FoRP, 

Enter Mrs. Quickly. 

Mrs. Ford. Trust me, I thought on her : 
she'll Ct it. 

Mrs. Page. You are come to see my daughter 

Quirk. Ay, forsooth. And I pray, how does 
good mistress Anne ? 

Mrs. Page. Go iu with us and sec ; we have 
an hour's talk with you. 

[Exeunt Mrs. P.kge, Mrs. Ford, and Mrs. 

Page. How now, master Ford ? 

Ford. You heard what this knare told me; 
did you not ? 

Page. Yes. And V"'> liii'il ulnf tin- (.tlicr 
told mc ? 

/ ■ /. Do you think ihcie is trulli iu ihcm? 

y uy<f. Hang 'em, slaves ; I do not think the 
knight would offer it : but these that accuse him 
in his intent towards our wives are a yoke of bis 
discarded men: very rogues, now they be out 
of service. 

Ford. Were they his men ? 

Page. Marry were they. 

Ford. I like it never ihc bettor fur iIaui. — 
Does he lie at the Garter ? 

Page. Ay, marry, does be. If he should in- 
tend this voyage towards my wife, I would turn 
her loose to him ; and what he gets more of her 
tliau sharp words, let it lie on my luad. 

Ford. I do not misdoubt my wife ; but 1 
would be loth to turn tl ' iher: A man 
may be too confident : I w <■ nothing lie 

on my head : I cannot be thus satisfied. 

Page. Look, where my ranting host of the 
Garter comes : there is either liquor iu his pate, 
or money in his purse, when he looks so merrily. 
— How now, mine host ? 

Enter Host and Shallow. 

Jloxt. How now, bully-rook ! thou'rt a gen- 
tleman : cavalero justice, I say. 

Shal. I follow, mine host, I follow. — Good 
even, and twenty, good master Page! Ma^ttr 
Page, will you go with us ? we have sport iu 

Host. Tell him, cavalcro-justice ; tell him, 

Shal. Sir, there is a fray to be fought, between 
sir Hugh the Welch priest, and Caius the French 

Ford. Good mine host o' the Garter, a word 
with you. 

Host. What say'st thou, my bully-rook ? 

[They go aside. 

Shal. Will you [to Page.] go with us to be- 
hold it? ily merry host hath had the i 
of their weapons ; and, I think, hath ;.i.i..M,.>. >1 
them contrary places : for, believe me, I hear 
the parson is no jester. Hark, I will tell you 
what out sport shall be. 

Host. Hast thou no suit against ray knight, 
my guest-cavalier ? 

Ford. None, I protest : but I'll give you a jiot- 
tlc of burnt sack to give me recourse to him, and 
tell him my name is Brook : » only for a jest. 

Host. My hand, bully ; thou shalt have egress 
,nd regress ; said 1 well ? and thy name shall 
.; Brook : It is a merry knight. Will you go 
on, heers ? •• 

» The folio ll 
ftt Broome : tiic '. 
of Br 
ui— •' - 
liquor." I 
namcwai 1> 
Fcnton) wc h.iv i:.'' : 
day in tlie company 
r!.T -v!. ••. • • • 

ivcj the . 

• nrll 



Ct . 

.■? '.tV. L'll » » I » 

r, the ChincM being held to be of 

1.— the parallel J.a.»- 

Aci II.] 



Shal. Have with you, luiue host. 

Par/e. I have heard the Frenchman hath good 
skill in liis rapier.^ 

S/ial. Tut, sir, I could have told you more : 
In these times you stand on distance, your 
passes, stoccadocs, and I know not what : 'tis 
the heart, master Page ; 'tis here, 'tis here. 1 
liave seen tlie time with my long sword I would 
have made you four tail fellows skip like rats. 

Host. Here, boys, here, here ! shall we wag ? 

Page. Have with you : — I had rather hear 
them scold than fight. 

\_Exeit)d Host, Shallow, and Page. 

Ford. Though Page be a secure fool, and 
stands so firmly on his wife's frailty, yet I cannot 
put off my opinion so easily : Slie was in his 
company at Page's house ; and, wliat they made 
there I know not. "Well, I will look fui-ther 
into 't : and I have a disguise to sound PalstafF : 
If I find her honest, I lose not ray labour ; if she 
be otherwise, 'tis labour weU bestowed. 


SCENE II.— A Room in the Garter Inn. 

Enter Ealstaff and Pistol. 

Fal. I will not lend thee a penny.'' 

Pist. Why, then the world's mine oyster. 
Which I with sword wiU open." 

Fal. Not a pcnuy. I have been content, sii', 
you should lay my countenance to pawn : I have 
grated upon my good friends for three reprieves 
for you and your coach-fellow, Nym; or else 
you had looked through the grate, like a gcminy 
of baboons. I am damned in hell, for swearing 
to gentlemen my friends you were good soldiers 
and tall fellows : and when mistress Bridget lost 
the handle of lier fan, I took 't upon mine ho- 
nour thou hadst it not. 

Pist. Didst not thou share ? hadst thou not 
fifteen pence ? 

Fal. Reason, you rogue, reason : Think 'st 
thou I'll endanger my son\ //rat is .^ At a word, 
hang no more about mc, I am no gibbet for you: 

sase in the quarto U, "here boys, shall we wag?" The 
ordinary reading is, "will you go on, hearts?" Malone 
would read, " will you go and hr:nr us?" Boaden proposes, 
"will you pn, Ciivalcircs?" We think that the Host, who, 
although he desires to talk with the German gentlemen who 
"speak F.nglish," is find of using foreign words which he 
has picked up from his guests, such as cavalero, Francisco, 
and varktto, employs the Dutch Ilecr, or the German Ilcrr, 
— Sir. — Master, lioth words are pronounced nearly alike. 
He says, "will you go on, hccrsl " Theobald proposed 
mynheers, which is perhaps right, 
n The passage in the quarto i-; thus: 

" Fnl. I'll not lend thee a penny. 

Pist. 1 will retort the sum in equipage. 

Pal. Not a penny." 
Die editors could not be satisfied to roceive the beautiful 
answer of Pistol, "Why then the world's mine oyster," &c., 
without retaining the weaker passage, " I will retort the 
sum in equipage " 


—go. — A short knife and a throng ; » — to your 
manor of Pickt-hatch,'' go.— You'll not bear a 
letter for me, you rogue ! — You stand upon your 
honour! — Why, thou unconfinable baseness, it 
is as much as I can do to keep the terms of my 
honoui- precise. I, I, I myself sometimes, leav- 
ing the fear of heaven on the left hand, and 
hiding mine honour in my necessity, am fain to 
shuffle, to edge, and to liu'ch ; and yet you, 
rogue, will ensconce your rags, yonr cat-a- 
mountain looks, your red-lattice phrases,*" and 
your bold-beating oaths, under the shelter of 
your honour ! You will not do it, you ? 

Pist. I do relent. What would thou more of 

Enter IloBiN. 

Rob. Sir, here's a woman MOidd speak with 

Fal. Let her approach. 

Enter Mistress Quicklt. 

Quiclc. Give your worship good-morrow. 

Fal. Good-morrow, good wife. 

Quick. Not so, an't please your worsliip. 

Fal. Good maid, then. 

Quick. I'll be sworn ; as my mother was, the 
first hour I was born. 

Fal. I do believe the swearer : What with mc ? 

Qtiiclc. Shall T vouchsafe your worship a word 
or two ? 

Fal. Two thousand, fair woman : and I'll 
vouchsafe thee the hearing. 

Quick. There is one mistress Ford, sir; — I 
pray, come a little nearer this ways : — I myself 
dwell with master doctor Caius. 

Fal. Well, on : Mistress Ford, you say, — 

Quick. Your worship says very true : I pray 
your worship, come a little nearer this ways. 

Fal. I waiTant thee, nobody hears ;— mine 
own people, mine own people. 

Quick. Are they so ? Heaven bless them, 
and make them his servants ! 

Fa!. WcU : Mistress Ford ;— what of her ? 

Quick. Why, sir, she's a good creature. Lord, 
lord ! your worship's a wanton : Well, heaven 
forgive you, and all of us, I pray ! 

Fal. Mistress Ford ; — come, mistress Ford, — 

Quick. Marry, this is the short and the long 
of it ; you have brought her into such a canaries, 
as 'tis wonderful. The best courtier of them all, 
when the court lay at Windsor, could never have 

a A short knife, S.C. A knife to cut purses, and a mob to 
find thi^m amongst. 

b I'ickt-katch is mentioned in one of Ben Jonson's Epi- 
grams, in company with " Mersh Lambeth and White 
Fryers." Each of these was an Alsatia in Shakspere's day. 

<: Red-lattice phrases — ale-house terms. Thus Falstaff 's 
page in Henry IV. says; " he called me, even now, my lord, 
through a red-lattice- " 

AlT II.] 


[Sets; i; 

brought her tu such a cauary. Yet there has been 
knights, and lords, and geutlemeu, with their 
coaches ; 1 warrniut you, coach after coach, * 
letter after letter, gift after gift ; smelling so 
sweetly, (;dl nmsk) and so rushling, I warrant 
you, in silk and gold; and in such alligiint 
terms ; and in such wine and sng-ar of the best, 
and the fairest, that would have won any wo- 
man's heart ; and, I warrant you, they could 
never get an eye-wink of her. — I had myself 
twenty angels given uic this morning; but I 
defy all angels, (in any such sort, as they say,) 
but in the way of honesty : — and, I warrant you, 
they coiild never get her so much as sip on a 
cup with the proudest of them all : and yet there 
has been carls, nay, which is more, pensioners ; ^ 
but, I warrant you, all is one with her. 

Fal. But what says she to mc ? be brief, my 
good she Mercury. 

Quick. Marry, she hath received your letter ; 
for the which she thanks you a thousand times : 
and she gives you to notify, that her husband 
will be absence from his house between ten and 

Fal. Ten and eleven ? 

Quirk. Ay, forsooth ; and then you may come 
and see the picture, she says, that you wot of; 
master Ford, her husbatd, will be from home. 
.iVJas ! the sweet woman leads an ill life with 
him ; he's a very jealousy man : she leads a very 
frampold* life with him, good heart. 

Fal. Ten and eleven : Woman, commezd mc 
to her ; I will not fail her. 

Quick. ^Vhy you say well : But I have an- 
other i * ':>: Mistress Page 
hath 1; . - to you too; — 
and let me tell vou in your car, she 's as fartuous 
a civil modest wife, and one (I tcil you) that 
will not miss you morning nor evening prayer, 
as any is in Windsor, whoe'er be the other : and 
she bade me tell your worship that her husband 
is seldom from home ; but, she hopes, there will 
come a time. I never knew a woman so dote 
upon a man ; surely, I think you have charms, 
la; (ruth. 

I, I assure thee; setting the attraction 
of my good parts aside I have no other charms. 

Qxii-k. Blessing on your heart for*! ! 

Fal. But, I pray thee, tell mc this : has Ford's 
wife and Page's wife acquainted each other how 
they love me ? 

Quick. That were a jest, indeed ! — they have 
not so little grace, I hope ; — that were a trick, 
indeed ! But mistress Page would desire you 

» Fram^W— fretful, uncaiy. 

to send her your little p;. U loves :' htr 

husband has a manellou- . ii to the little 

page : and, truly, master Page is an honest man. 
Never a wife in ^^ indsor leads a better life than 
she does ; do what she will, say what she will, 
take all, pay all, go to bed when she list, rise 
when she list, all is as she will ; and, truly, she 
desen'cs it : for if there be a kind woman ii 
\\ indsor, she is one. You must send her your 
page ; no remedy. 

Fal. Why, I will. 

Quick. Nay, but do so theu : and, look you 
he may come and go between you both ; and, in 
any case, have a nay-word, that you may know 
one another's mind, and the boy never need to 
understand any thing; for 'tis not good that 
children should know any wickedness ; old folks, 
you know, have discretion, as they say, and 
know the world. 

commend mc to them 

I am yet thy debtor. 

this woman. This 

Fal. Fare thee well: 
both: there's my purse 
— Boy, go along with 
news distracts mc ! 

[Exeunt Qlickly and RiBlX. 

Pisf. This punk is one of Cupid's carriers : — 
Clap on more sails ; pursue, >ip with your fights ;'' 
Give fire ; she is my prize, or ocean whelm 
them all ! 

{^Exil Pistol. 

Fal. Say'st thou so, old Jack ? go thy ways ; 
I'll make more of thy old body than I have done. 
Will they yet look after thee i Wilt thou, after 
the expense of so much money, be now a gainer? 
Good body, I thank thee : Let them say, 'tis 
grossly done ; so it be fairly done no matter. 

Enter BABDOLni. 

Bard. Sir John, there's one master Brook 
below would fain speak with you, and be ac- 
quainted with you; and hath sent your woi-shij: 
a morning's draught of sack.' 

Fal. Brook is his name ? 

Bard. Ay, sir. 

Fal. Call him in ; [Exit B.vRUOLlMi.] Sucli 
Brooks arc welcome to mc that o'erflow such 
liquor. Ah ! ha ! mistress Ford and mistress 
Page, have I encompassed you? go to; tia! 

lU-enter B.inDOLril, vilh FoRD disjuited. 

Ford. Bless you, sir. 


.in r in i; 

» of all / 

1 tc. \Vc ' 

muiir, thAt _ 't 

nol«c with i(." 
b Pighli-liTyitTi, In hU Tra^^cdy of Amboyna, hu 
" Up «l'-h yoxiTJighti 
And your ncitinin prepare." 
Itappcan th*t>yA<« »crc waitc-cloll il the men 

cortrU, layi Mr. White, from Colc'» I _ t. 


Act II.] 


[SCL.N£ II. 

Fal. And you, sir : Would you speak witli me ? 

Ford. I make bold to press with so little 
preparation upon you. 

Fal. You're welcome. "What's your wiU? 
Give us leave, di-awer. \_Exit Bakdolpii. 

Ford. Sir, I am a gentleman that have spent 
much ; my name is Brook. 

Fal. Good master Brook, I desu-e more ac- 
quaintance of you. 

Ford. Good sir John, I sue for yours : not to 
charge you ; for I must let you understand I 
ihink myself in better plight for a lender than 
you are : the which hath something emboldened 
me to this unseasoned intrusion : for they say, 
if money go before all ways do lie open. 

Fal. Money is a good soldier, sir, and will on. 

Ford. Troth, and I have a bag of money 
here troubles me: if you will help to bear it, 
sir John, take all, or half, for easing me of the 

Fal'. Sir, I know not how I may deserve to be 
your porter. 

Ford. I wUl tell you, sir, if you wUl give me 
the hearing. 

Fal. Speak, good master Brook ; I shall be 
glad to be your servant. 

Ford. Sir, I hear you are a scholar, — I will 
be brief with you, — and you have been a man 
long known to me, though I had never so good 
means, as desire, to make myself acquainted 
with you. I shaU. discover a thing to you, 
wherein I must very much lay open mine own 
imperfection : but, good sir John, as you have 
one eye upon my follies, as you hear them 
unfolded, turn another into the register of your 
own ; that I may pass with a reproof the easier, 
sith you yourself know how easy it is to be such 
an offender. 

Fal. Very well, sir ; proceed. 

Ford. There is a gentlewoman in this town, 
her husband's name is Ford. 

Fal. "Well, sir. 

Ford. I have long loved her, and I protest to 
you, bestowed much on her ; followed her with 
a doting observance ; engrossed opportunities to 
meet her ; fce'd every slight occasion that could 
but niggardly give me sight of her; not only 
bought many presents to give her, but have 
given largely to many, to know what she would 
have given : briefly, I have pursued her as love 
hath pursued me, wliich hatli been on the wing 
of all occasions. But whatsoever I have merited, 
either in my mind, or in my means, meed, I am 
sure, I have received none ; unless experience 
be a jewel ; that I have purchased at an infmite 
rate ; and tiiat hath taught me to say this : 

Love like a shadow flies, when substance love pursues ; 
Pursuing Ihat that flies, and flying what pursues. 

Fal. Have you received no promise of satisfac- 
tion at her hands ? 

Ford. Never. 

Fal. Have you importuned her to such a 
pui-pose ? 

Ford. Never. 

Fal. Of what quality was yoiir love then ? 

Ford. Like a fair house built on another 
man's groimd ; so that I have lost my edifice, 
by mistaking the place where I erected it. 

Fal. To what purpose have you unfolded this 
to me? 

Ford. "When I have told you that I have told 
you all. Some say, that, though she appear 
honest to me, yet, in other places, she enlargeth 
her mirth so far that there is shrewd construction 
made of her. Now, sir John, here is the heart 
of my purpose : You are a gentleman of excel- 
lent breeding, admirable discourse, of great 
admittance, authentic in your place and person, 
generally allowed for your many war-like, court- 
like, and learned preparations. 

Fal. 0, sir ! 

Ford. Believe it, for you know it : — There is 
money : spend it, spend it ; spend more ; spend 
all I have ; only give me so much of your time 
in exchange of it, as to lay an amiable siege to 
the honesty of this Ford's wife : use your art of 
wooing, win her to consent to you ; if any man 
may you may as soon as any. 

Fal. AYoidd it ap]>ly well to the vehemeney of 
yoiu" affection, that I should mIu what you would 
enjoy ? Methinks, you prescribe to yourself very 

Ford. 0, imderstand my drift ! she dwells so 
securely on the excellency of her honour, that 
the folly of my soul dares not present itself ; she 
is too bright to be looked against. Now, could 
I come to her with any detection in my hand, 
my desires had instance and argument to com- 
mend themselves : I could drive her then from 
the ward of her purity, her reputation, her 
marriage vow, and a thousand other her de- 
fences, which now arc too too strongly embattled 
against me : "Wliat say you to't, sir John ? 

Fal. Master Brook, I will first make bold with 
your money ; next, give me your hand ; and last, 
as I am a gentleman, you shall, if you will, 
enjoy Ford's wife. 

Ford. good sir ! 

Fal. I say you shall. 

Ford. "Want no money, sir John, you shall 
want none. 

Fal. War.t no mistress Ford, master Brook, 

Acr II.] 



you shall want uoue. I sball be with her, (I 
may tell you,) by her own appointment ; even 
as you came in to mc, her assistant, or go- 
between, parted from me : I say, I shall be with 
her between ten and eleven; for at that time the 
jealous rascally knave, her husband, will be 
forth. Come you to me at night ; you shall 
know how I speed. 

Ford. I am blest iu your acquaintance. Do 
you know Ford, Sir ? 

Ftil. Hang him, poor cuckokily knave ! I 
know him not : — yet I wrong him to call him 
poor; they say the jealous uittolly knave hath 
masses of money ; for the which his wife seems 
to me well-favoiu'cd. I will use her as the key 
of the cuckoldly rogue's coffer; and there's my 

FurJ. I woidd you knew Ford, sir ; that you 
might avoid him if you saw him. 

Fal. Hang him, mechanical salt-butler rogue ! 
I will stare him out of his wits ; I will awe him 
with my cudgel : it shall hang like a meteor 
o'er the cuckold's horns : master Brook, thou 
shalt know I will predominate over the peasant, 
and thou shalt lie with his wife. — Come to me 
soon at night : — Ford's a knave, and I will 
aggravate his stile ; thou, master Brook, shalt 
know him for knave and cuckold : — come to me 
soon at night. [Zx/V. 

Ford. What a damned Epicurean rascal is 
this ! — My heart is ready to crack with im- 
patience. — Who says, this is improvident jea- 
lously ? My wife hath sent to him, the hour is 
fixed, the match is made. Would any man have 
thought this ? — See the hell of having a f;dse 
woman ! My bed shall be abused, my coffers 
ransacked, my reputation giiawn at ; and I shall 
not only receive this villainous wrong, but stand 
under the adoption of abominable terms, and by 
him that docs mc this ■wrong. Terms ! names ! 
— Amaitnon sounds well ; Lucifer, well ; Bar- 
bason, well ; yet they are devils' additions, the 
names of fiends ! but cuckold ! wittol-cuckold ! 
the devil himself hath not such a name. Page 
is an ass, a secure ass ! he will tnist his wife, he 
will not be jealous ; I will rather trust a Fleming 
with my butter, parson Hugh the Welchman ; 
with my cheese, an Iribhman with my aqua-vita 
bottle, or a thief to walk my ambling gelding, 
than my wife with herself : then she plots, then 
she ruminates, then she devises ; and wliat they 
think in their hearts they may effect they will 
break their hearts but thoy will effect. Heaven 
be praised for my jealousy I — Eleven o'clock the 
hour. — I will prevent this, detect my wife, be 
revenged on Faistaff, and laugh at Page. I will 

about it ; better three hours too soon than a 
minute too late. Fie, fie, fie! cuckold! cuckold! 
cuckold ! lEj-if, 

SCENE III. — Field near irindsor. 
Enter Caivs and Rugby. 

Caius. Jack Rugby ! 

Bug. Sir. 

Cuius. Vat is de clock. Jack ? 

Rug. 'Tis past the hour, sir, that sir Hugh 
promised to meet. 

Caius. By gar, he has save his soul, dat he is 
no come ; he has pray his Piblc veil, dat he is 
no come : by gar. Jack Rugby, he is dead 
already if he be come. 

Euf/. He is wise, sir ; he knew your worship 
would kill him if he came. 

Ccu'us. By gar, de herring is no dead so as 1 
vill kill him. Take your rapier. Jack ; I vill 
tell you how I vill kill him. 

Jiug. Alas, sir, I cannot fence. 

Caius. Villainy, take your rapier. 

Hug. Forbear ; here 's company. 

E/ifcr Host, Shallow, Slexdeb, a/id Page. 

J/osi. 'Bless thee, bully doctor. 

S/t(il. Save vou, master doctor Caius. 

Page. Now, good master doctor. 

S/en. Give you good-morrow, sir. 

Caius. Vat be all you, one, two, tree, four, 
come for ? 

Ilosf. To see thee fight, to see thee foiu, to 
see thee traverse, to see thee here, to see thee 
there ; to see thee pass thy punto, thy stock, thy 
reverse, thy distance, thy montant. Is he dead, 
my Ethiopian ? is he dead, my Francisco ? ha, 
bully ! "What says my Jilsculapius ? my Galen •• 
my heart of elder ? ha ! is he dead, bully Stale ? 
is he dead ? 

Caius. By gar, he is dc coward Jack priest of 
de vorld ; he is not show his face. 

Ilosf. Thou art a Castilian,* king Urinal ! 
Hector of Greece, my boy I 

Caius. I pray you, bear vitness that me liavc 
stay six or seven, two, tree hours for him, and 
he is no come. 

S/ial. He is the wiser man, master doctor : he 
is a curcr of souls and vou a curer of bodies ; if 
you should fight, you go against the hair of your 
professions ; is it not true, master Page ? 

Page. Mister Shallow, you liave yourself been 
a great fighter, though now a man of peace. 

■ Catlitian. — The Hot ridicules the Doctor throuf;)i hii 

;„„,.,,.,..,,.<• )-..,,:;,),_ (ic i, a ■• heart of eldr.-," the elder 

n pllh; — he is .1 C.milian. name 

« desii;natii)n for tlic Spaniards, whom 

llic Enifii^h ol hliz.ibfth's time hated a< much as their 

descendants were accustumcd to hate the French. 


Act 11. 


[Scene III. 

S/ial. liodykjiis, master Fiv^c, iliougli I uow 
be old, and of tlie peace, if I see a swoi'd out 
my finger itches to make one : though we are 
justices, and doctors, and churclmieii, master 
Page, \vc liave some sdt of our youth iu us; we 
are the sons of women, master Page. 

Fa</e. 'Tis true, master Shallow. 

Shal. It will be found so, master Page. Mas- 
ter doctor Caius, I am come to fetch you homo. 
I am sworn of the j)eace ; you have shewed 
yourself a wise physician, and sir Hugh hath 
shewn himself a wise and patient : 
you must go with rr.<2, master doctor. 

IlosL Pardon, guest justice: — ah, monsieur 

Caius. Moek-vater ! vat is dat ? 

IIosL !Mock-water, in our English tongue, is 
valour, bully. 

Caius. By gar, then I have as nuich mock- 
vater as de Englishman : — Scui'vy jack-dog 
priest ! by gar, me vill cut his cars. 

I/osl. He will c.'lappcr-claw tliec tightly, bidly. 

Caius. Clappcr-de-claw ! vat is dat ? 

HosL That is, he will make thee amends. 

Caius. By gar, me do look he shall clappcr- 
de-elaw me ; for, by gar, me vill have it. 

JIosL And I will provoke him to't, or let him 

Caius. Me tank you for dat. 

Jlosi. And moreover, bully, — But lirst, master 

« Mock-water. So the original ; it was clian^'ed by Far- 
mer to muck water. Lord Clicdsvorth suggests that as the 
lustre of a diamond is called its water, mock-vater may 
mean a counterfeit valour. Surely tliis is very daring. 
Mocliwnlir, or muck-wiiler, was some allusion to the 
profession cf Caius. 

guest, and master Page, and eke cavalero felc:i- 
der, go you through the town to Frogmore. 

[Aside to thchi. 

Pane. Sli' Ilnirh is there, is he? 

Host. He is there : see what humour he is 
iu ; and I will bring the doctor about by the 
fields : will ii do well ? 

S/ial. We will do it. 

Parjc. Shal. and Slen. Adieu, good master 
doctor. \_Exciint Page, Shallow, and Slender. 

Caius. By gar, me vill kill de priest ; for he 
speak for a jack-an-ape to Anne Page. 

Host. Let him die : sheath thy impatience ; 
throw cold water on thy cholcr : go about the 
fields with me through Frogmore ; 1 will bring 
thee where mistress Anne Page is, at a farm- 
house, a feasting : and thou shalt woo her : 
Cry'd game ? * said I well ? 

Cams. ]3y gar, me tank you for dat : by gar, 
I love you ; and I shall procure-a you de good 
guest, de earl, de knight, de lords, de gentlemen, 
my patients. 

Host. For the which I will be thy adversary 
toward Anne Page ; said I well ? 

Caius. By gar, t 'is good ; veil said. 

Host. Ijct us wag then. 

Caius. Come at my heels, Jack llugby. 


&Crijdgame. So the folio. Warburton proposed to read 
crifd aim, and much learning has been expended in support 
of this reading. Those who retain the original cri/'d gatiie 
suppose that the Host addresses Dr. Caius by this as a 
name, in the same way that he calU him "heart of elder " 
Mr. Dyce has "Cried l ami.'" Mr. Wliite retains "cried 
game," believing it to be a colloquial iihrase of which thj 
meaning can be guessed at. l\Ir. Collier's corrected 
copy has " Curds ami cream. ' 

■ At a fann-hotise, a feasting."] 


» SCENK I.—" This Flemhh drunlard." 

TuE English of the days o[ Elizabeth accused 
the peoj)le of the Low Countries with haviug 
taught them to drink to excess. The " men of 
war" who hud (.'ainpaigued in Elanders, according 
to Sir John Smjtlu-, in his 'discourses,' 1590, 
introduced this vice amongst us ; "' whereof it is 
come to pass that now-adaj's there are very few 
fi-a.sts where our said men of war are present, but 
that they do invito and procure all the company, 
of what calling soever they be, to carousing and 
quaflRiii: ; and, because they will not bo denied 
their challenges, they, witii many new conges, 
ceremonies, and reverences, drink to the he;dth 
and prosperity of princes ; to the health of coun- 
sellors, and uuto the health of their greatest friends 
both at home and abroad : in wliich exercise they 
never cease till they be dead drunk, or, as the 
Flemings say, Doot dronken." He adds : " and 
this aforesaid detestable vice hath within these six 
or seven j'ears taken wonderful root amongst our 
English nation, that in times past was wont to be 
of all nations of Christendom one of the soberest." 

* ScEJJE I. (also Act V. Sc. V.) — "Green sleeves." 

This appears to have been a very poi)ular song 
in Shakspere's time, and, judging from an allusion 
to it in Fletcher's Tragi Comedy, 'The Loj-al 
Subject,' as well as from a pami'hlet entered at 
Stationei-s' flidl,in February, 1580, under the title 
of 'A representation Green Slcercs, by W 
Elderton,' w;u3 thought gross, even in an age when 
what was in gay society called polite conversation 
was rarely free from indelicacy, and the drama 
teemed with jokes and expressions that now would 
not be tolerated in the servant.s' hall. The original 
words of Green Sleeics have not descended to us, 
but the tune was too good to be condemned to 
tliat oblivion which has been the fate of the verses 

to which it was firet set ; hence many adapted 
their poetical effusions to it, and among tliose 
extant, is "a new courtly sonnet of the Lady 
Greensleeves," reprinted in A'Uis'a Specimens of the 
Early IJnylish I'ucts, from an extremely scarce 
xniscellany, called 'A Handful of Pleasant Delites, 
&c., by Clement Robinson, and othei-s, 12nio, 15S4.' 
This sonnet contiins some curious ["articnlai-s 
respecting female dress and manners, during the 
sixteentli century. At the time too when it was 
the fashion, in England and in Fmnce, to Bet 
sacred words to popular tunes, this air, among 
others, was selected for the i>urpo8e. as wo learn 
ivom the books of the Stationers' Company, 
wherein ajipears, in September, 15S0, the following 
entry — '• Greensleeves, moralized to the Scriptures." 
Greensleeves is to be found in all the editions of 
The Danchirf-mastrr that have come under our 
notice. In the seventeenth (1721) which is the 
best, it tiikes the title of "Greensleeves and yellow 
lace." It was introduced by Gay, or his friend 
Dr. Pepusch, in ' The Beggars' 0|jera,' set to the 
song, " Since laws were made for every degree," 
and is still well known, in quarters where ancient 
customs are j'et kept up in all their rude simplicity, 
as " Christmas comes but once a year." Sir J. 
Hawkins!, in the Appendix to his History of Music, 
gives the first strain only : why he omitted the 
lattor half is not stated.* In all the copies of 
the air it appears in the now obsolete measure of 
six crotchets. In I'he Dancin;/ Masdr it is set in 
the key of A minor; in The Bc'j'jars Opera, in G 
minor. We here give it in a measure universally 
understood, and have added such a base as seems to 
us to be in keeping with a vocal melody between 
two and three hundred ycara old. 

• In 'A collection of national Englisli airs,' editi-d l>v 
W. Chappcll, (a very interesting work, shewing great re- 
scnrcli) this tune is inserted in tlic key of E minor, wiili a 
moving base by Ur. Crotch. 


^H s- 


*'^-| 1^ 

--^ -giT-iSs^-- 



m ^ 




• 1 

H 1^ 




:&a* ^^ 

' Scene I. — " / have heard the Frenchman hath 
good skill in hh rapier." 

Shallow ridicules tlie formalities that belong to 
the use of the rapier, which those of the old 
school thought a cowar.lly weapon. The intro- 
duction of the rapier into England was ascribed 
to one Rowland York, who is thus spoken of in 
Carleton's ' Thankful Remembrance of God's 
Mercy,' 1625 : " He was a Londoner, famous 
amon^ the cutters of his time, for bringing in a 
new kind of fight, — to run the point of the rapier 
into a man's body. This manner of fight he 
brought first into England, with great admiration 
of his audaciousness ; when in England, before 
that time, the use was, with little bucklers, and 
with broad swords, to strike, and not to thrust; 
and it was accounted unmanly to strike under 
the girdle." This passage from Carleton appears 
to bo an inaccurate statement from Darcic'.s 
'Annals of Elizabeth,' wherein it is said that 
Rowland York was the first that brought into 
England " that wicked and pernicious fashion to 
fight in the fields, in duels, with a rapier called a 
tucke, only for the thrust," &c. Douce distinguishes 
between the rapier generally, and the tucke for the 
thrust. It appears, however, from other autliorities, 
that the rapier was in use in the time of Henry 
VIII. ; and Douce holds that " it is impossible to 
decide that this weapon, which, with its name, we 
received from the French, might not have been 
known as early as the reign of Henry lY., or even 
of Richard II." 

* Scene II. — " / ^viU not lend thee a picnny." 

This passage requires no comment ; but some of 
our readers may be pleased with the representation 
of the silver penny of Elizabeth. 

* Scene II. — " Coach after coach." 

" Coaches," says Mai one, '•' as appears from 
Howe's continuation of Stow's Chronicle, did 
not come into general use till the year 1605." 
Chalmers, on the contrary, has shewn us, from the 
'Journals of Parliament,' that a bill was intro- 
duced during the session of 1601 to restrain the 
excessive use of coaches. We subjoin from a print 
by Hoefnagel, dated 15S2, a very interesting 
illustration representing one of Elizabeth's visits 
to Nonsuch, by which we shall perceive that the 
form of state-coacheS; whether for sovereigns or 
lord mayor.?, has not matei-ially altered. 

^ Scene II. — " Nay, which is more, pensioners." 

Pensioners might have been put higher than 
earls by Mistress Quickly, on account of their 
splendid dress. Shakspere alludes to this in " A 
Midsummer Night's Dream : " 

" The cowslips tall her pensioners be, 
In their gold coats spots you see." 

But the pensioners of Elizabeth were also men of 
large fortune. Tyrwhitt illustrates the passage 
before us, from Gervase Holles's Life of the First 
Earl of Clare : "I have heard the Earl of Clare 
say, that when he was pensioner to the queen, he 
did not know a w'orse man of the whole band than 
himself; and that all the woi-ld knew he had then 
an inheritance of £4,000 a year." 

7 Scene II. — " Hath sent your woi-ship a morning's 
draught of sack." 

Presents of wine were often sent from one guest 
in a tavern to another, — sometimes by way of a 
friendly memorial, and sometimes as an intro- 
duction to acquaintance. " Ben Jonson wiis at a 
tavern, and in comes Bishop Corbet (but not so 
then) into the next room. Ben Jonson calls for 
a quart of raw wine, and gives it to the tapster. 


'Sirrah, says be, 'carry this to the gcutleman 
iu the next chamber, ami tell hiiii, I sacrifice my 
Dervice to him.' The fellow did, and in those 
wordd. ' Friend,' a-iya Dr. Corbet, ' I thank him 

for his lovo : but pr'ythec tell him from me that 
ho is mistaken ; for i^acritices are always burnt.' " 
— Merry Passages and Jeasts, UiiL MSS. 6395. 

1 :, i>.^ 



II if! 



II If ' lUI 

II ti 


>m,:JiiKrtiiW.\ .'•■ 








It is not very easy to define the spot where, ac- 
cortling to the mischievous aiTangcment of mine 
Host of the Garter, Dr. Caius waited for Sir Hugh 
Evans Sir Hugh, we know, waited for Dr. Caius 
near Frogmore ; for the host tells Shallow, and 
Page, and Slender, " Go you through the town to 
Frigiiiore ; " and he takes the doctor to meet Sir 
Hugh " about the fields through Frogmore." The 
8tage-<lirection for this third scene of the second 
Act is " \Vind.sor Park." Hut h;id Caius waited 
in Windsor Park he would have been near Frog- 
more, and it would not have been necessary to go 
through the town, or through the fields. We 
should be inclined, therefore, to place the locality 
of the third Bcene in the meadows near the Thames 
on th« west side of Windsor, and we have al- 
tered the stage direction accordingly. Frogmore 
was probably a small villas;e in Shakai^re's time; 
and at any rate it had its farm-house, where Anne 
Page was "a feasting." "Old Windsor way" Wivs 
farther than Frogmore from Windsor, so that 
Simple had little chance of finding Caius in that 
direction. The park, — the little park as it is now 
called, — undoubtedly came close to the castle ditch 
on the south-east Some of the oaks not a quarter 
of a mile from the castle, and which appear to 
have formed part of an avenue, are of great an- 

tiquity. Of the suj)posed locality of Heme's Oak 
in this park we shall .«peak iu the fifth Act. The 
forest, perhaps, stretched up irregularly tow.ards 
the castle, unenclosed, with meadows and common 
fields interposing. The connexion between the 
forest and the castle by the Long Walk was made 
in the Reign of Anne, the town receiving a grant 
for the property then enclosed. The description 
of Windsor nearest to the period of this comedy, 
is that of Lord Surrey's Poem, 1540, a st-inza of 
which will be found in Henry IV. Part II. Our 
readers will not be displeased to have it presented 
to them entire : — 

So cruel prison how could betide, alas I 

Ai |iroud Windsor t where I in lust and joy, 
AViih a king's son, my cliildUh years did pass, 
In greater feast than I'riam's sons of Troy. 

Where each swtct place returns a taste full sour. 

The large green courts, where »c were wont to hovs," 
With eyes cast up unto the Maiden's Tower, 
And easy sighs, such as folk draw in love. 

The stately seat^, ihe ladies bright of hue. 

The dances short, long tales of great dcUght; 
With words, and looks, that tigers could but rue, 
Where each of us did plead the other's right. 

The palme-play.t where, despoiled X for 'he game, 

• Linger, or hover. t Tennis-court. t Stript, 



With dazed ejvs oft we by gleams of love, 
Have miss'd the ball, and got sight of our dame, 
To bait her eves, which kept the leads above. 

The gravei'd ground, with sleeves tied on the helm, 
On foaming horse with swords and friendly liearts ; 
With chere, as though one should another whelm. 
Where we have fought, and cliased oft with darts. 

With silver drops the meads yet spread for ruth ; 
In active games of nimbleness and strength. 
Where we did stiaiii, trained with swarms of yc.uth, 
Our tender limbs, that yet shot up in length. 

The secret groves, which oft we made resound 
Of pleasant plaint, and of our ladies' j-raise ; 
Recording soft what grace each one had found, 
What hope of speed, what dread of long delays. 

T!.e wild forest, the clothed holts with green ; 

With reins availed, and swiftly-breathed horse. 
With cry of hounds, and nicriy blasts between. 
Where we did chase the fearful hart of force. 

The Joiifnal of the Secretary of the Duke of 
\Vsr temberg, described in the lutroductory Notice, 
contains the following curious description of the 
Tark-s of Wind.sor, in 1592 : — 

" Her Majesty aijpointed a respectable elderly 
English nobleman to attend upon your Princely 
Grace, and required and ordered the same not only 
to eLow to your Princely Grace the splendidly 

beautiful and royal castle of Windsor, but also to 
make the residence pleasant and merry with shoot- 
ing and hunting the numerous herds of game ; for 
it is well known that the aforesaid place, Wind.sor, 
has upwards of sixty parks adjoining each other, 
full of fallow-deer and other game, of all sorts of 
colours, which may be driven from one park (all 
being enclosed with hedges) to another, and thus 
one can enjoy a splendid and royal sport. 

"The hunter.-: (deer or park keepers) who live 
in separate but excellent house.?, as had been ap 
pointed, made excellent sport for your Princely 
Grace. In the first Park your Princely Grace shot 
a fallow deer through the thigh, and it was soon 
after cajitured by the dogs. In the next you hunt- 
ed a stag for a long time over a broad and pleasant 
plain, with a pack of remarkably good hounds ; 
your Princely Grace first shot it with an English 
crossbow, and the hounds at length outwearied 
and captured it. 

" In the third you loosed a stag, but somewhat 
too quickly, for he was caught too soon, and almost 
before he came right out upon the plain. 

" These three deer were sent to Windsor, and 
were presented to your Princely Grace : one of 
these was done justice to in the apartments of 
Monsieur do Bcauvois. the French ambassador." 




I" Nay, keep your way, little gallant. "j 


4 Field near Frogmoic. 


£/ifer Sir Ilucn Evans and Simple 

Kca. I pray you now, good master Slcnder's 
scrving-inan, and friend Simple by your name, 
wliicU way have you looked for master Caius, 
that calls himself Doctor of Physic ? 

Sint. Marry, sir, the pittie-ward," the park- 
ward, every way; old "Windsor way, and every 
way but the town way. 

Era. I most fehemently desire you, you will 
also look that way. 

Sim. I will, sir. 

Eta. Pless my soul ! how full of cholers I 
am, and Ircmpling of mind! — I shall be glad if 
he have deceived me : — how melancholies I am ! 
I will knog his urinals about his knave's costard, 
when I have good opportunities for the 'ork — 
pless my soul ! ISi/ijx. 

To ih.-illow riven, to whose falli 
Melodious birdi ting mailriKnli ; 
There will wc make our pcds of roses. 
And a thousand fragrant posiri. 
To »hnllo\T— 

'>rcrcy on me ! I have a great dispositions to cry. 

Mclodioui birds ling madrigals : 
When OS I sat in I'abylon, — 
And a thousand vagram posies. 
To shallow— 

• riltit-vard. Steevens clianpcd this to cWy-irari/, which 
he txplains •' lovtrds London ; " — as if Windior were as 
near the city a.« Whitechapcl. Pillieirard is undoubtedly 
r:|;ht. and 1< of the same import as ;»-nr/-ward. A part of 
Windsor Castle is titll called the lourrr ward, and in the 
same way another part might have been known a* the 

Sim. Yonder he is coming, this way. Sir Hugh. 
Fcfl. He's welcome: 

To shallow rivers, to whose falls 1^ 

Heaven prosper the right! — What wenpnn*; is 

Sim. No weapons, sir : Tlicre comes my 
master, master Shallow, and another gentleman 
from Frogmore, over the stile, this way. 

Eea. I'ray you, give mo my sown ; or else 
keep it in your arms. 

Enter Page, Shallow, and Slender. 

S/ial. How now, master p:u-sou? Good-mor- 
row, good sir Hugh. Keep a gamester from the 
dice, and a good student from his book, and it is 

Slen. Ah, sweet Anne Page ! 

Paffe. Save you, good sir Hugh ! 

Era. Pless you from his mercy sake, all of you! 

S/ia/. AVhat ! the sword and tlie word ! do you 
study them both, master parson ? 

Pat/e. And youthful still, in your doublet and 
hose, this raw rheumatic day ? 

Eca. There is reasons and causes for it. 

Pa^e. Wc arc come to you to do a good ofTicc, 
master parson. 

Era. Fcry well : What is it ? 

Paffe. Yonder is a most reverend gentleman, 
who belike, having received \\Tong by some 
person, is at most odds with his own gravity and 
patience, that ever vou saw. 


Act III.] 


[Scene II. 

Shal. I have lived foiu'scorc years and up- 
ward ; I never licard a man of his place, 
gravity, and learning, so wide of his ovn\ 

Emi. Wiat is he ? 

Fa(/e. I think you know him ; master doctor 
Cains, the renowaicd French Pliysician. 

Eca. Got's will, and his passion of my heart ! 
I had as lief you would tell me of a mess of 

Page. Why? 

Eva. He hab no more knowledge in Hiboerates 
and Galen, — and he is a knave besides ; a 
cowardly knave, as you would desires to be 
acquainted withal. 

Far/e. I warrant you, he 's the man should 
fight with him. 

Sle)i. 0, sweet Anne Page ! 

Shal. It appears so, by his weapons : — Keep 
them asunder ;— here comes doctor Caius. 

Enter Host, Caius, and Rugby. 

Page. Nay, good master parson, keep in your 

Slial. So do you, good master doctor. 

Host. Disarm them, and let them question ; 
let them keep theii" limbs whole, and hack our 

Caius. I pray you let-a me speak a word vit 
your ear ; Verefore vill you not meet a-me ? 

Eva. Pray you, use your patience : in good 

Caius. By gar, you are de coward, de Jack 
dog, John ape. 

Eva. Pray you, let us not be laughing-stogs 
to other men's humours ; I desire you in friend- 
ship, and I will one way or other make you 
amends : — I will knog your urinal about your 
knave's cogscomb [for missing your meetings 
and appointments.]'' 

Caius. Biuhlc ! — Jack Rugby, — mine Host 
de Jarterre, have I not stay for him, to kill him ? 
have I not, at de place I did appoint. 

Eoa. As I am a christians soul, now, look 
you, this is the place appointed; I'll be judg- 
ment by mine host of the Garter. 

Host. Peace, I say, Guallia and Gaul ; French 
and Welch ; soul-curer and body-curcr. 

Caius. Ay, dat is very good ! cxecllcut ! 

Host. Peace, I say ; hear mine host of the 
Garter. Am I politic ? am I subtle ? am I 
a Machiavel ? Shall I lose my doctor ? no ; he 

a The passage in brackets is not in the folio, but in the 
quarto. It appears to have a necessary connexion with the 
retort of Caius. 


gives me the potions, and the motions. Shall I 
lose my parson ? my priest ? my sir Hugh ? no : 
he gives me the proverbs and the no-verbs. — 
[Give me thy hand, terrestrial ; so :]•■* — Give me 

thy hand, celestial ; so. Boys of art, I have 

deceived you both ; I have directed you to 
wrong places ; your hearts are mighty, your 
skins are M^hole, and let burnt sack be the issue, 
— Come, lay their swords to pawn : — FoUow me, 
lads of peace ; follow, follow, follow. 

Shal. Trust me, a mad host : — FoUow, gentle- 
men, follow. 

Sim, 0, sweet Anne Page ! 

\_Exeunt Shallow, Slender, Page, and Host. 

Cuius. Ha ! do I perceive dat ? have you 
make-a de sot of us ? ha, ha ! 

Eva. This is well ; he has made us his vlout- 
ing-stog. — I desire you that we may be friends; 
and let as knog our prains together, to be revenge 
on this same scaU,'' scurvy, cogging companion, 
the host of the Garter. 

Caius. By gar, vit all my heart ; he promise 
to bring me vere is Anne Page ; by gar, he 
deceive me too. 

Eva. Well, I will snute his noddles : — Pray 
you, follow. \Exexint. 

SCENE 11.— The Street in Windsor, 
Enter Mistress Page and Robin. 

Mrs. Page. Nay, keep your way, little gallant ; 
you were wont to be a foUowei', but now you are 
a leader : "VVliether had you rather lea'd mine 
eyes, or eye your master's heels ? 

Roh. I had rather, forsooth, go before you 
like a man, than follow him like a dwarf. 

Mrs. Page. O you are a flattering boy ; now, 
I see, you'll be a courtier. 

Enter Ford. 

Ford. Well met, mistress Page : Whither 
go you ? 

Mrs, Page. Truly, sir, to see your wife ; Is 
she at home ? 

Ford. Ay ; and as idle as she may hang 
together, for want of company. I think if your 
husbands were dead, vou two would marrv. 

Mrs. Page. Be sure of that, — two other hus- 

Ford. Where had you this pretty weathercock? 

Mrs. Page. I cannot tell what the dickens 

a The passage in brackets is not in the folio, but is found 
in the quarto. The address of the Host to the Doctor as 
terrestrial, and to the Parson as celestial, is too humorous 
to be lost. 

ij 5ca«— scald.— Thus Fluellen, "scald knave." 

\lT 111.] 


rSLisr 1(1 

his name is iiiv husbaml had him of: Wliat do 
YOU call your knight's name, sirrah ? 

Hoi. Sir John ralst;ifl'. 

Ford. Sir John Falst all"! 

Mrs. Page. He, he ; I can never hit on 's 
name. — There is such a league l)etween my 
good m:m and he ! — Is your wife at home, 
indeed ? 

Ford. Indeed, she is. 

Mr$. Page. By your leave, sir : — I am sick, 
till I see her. {Fxetint Mrs. Page and Robin. 

Ford, lias Page any brains? hath he any 
eyes ? hath he any tliLukiug ? Sure, they sleep ; 
he hath no use of them. ^Vby, this boy will 
carry a letter twenty miles, as easy as a cannon 
will shoot point-blank twelve score. Ho pieces 
out his wife's inclination ; he gives her folly 
motion and advantage : and now she's going to 
my wife, and Falstaif's boy with her. A man 
may hear this shower sing in the wind ! — and 
Falstaff's boy with her! — Good plots! — they 
are laid ; and our revolted wives share dam- 
nation together. Well; I will take him, then 
torture ray wife, pluck the borrowed veQ of 
modesty from the so seeming mistress Page, 
divulge Page himself for a secure and wilful 
ActfiEon ; and to these violent proceedings all 
my neighbours shall cry aim.* [Clock strikes^ 
The clock gives me my cue, and my assurance 
bids me search ; There I shall find Falstaff : 
I shall be rather praised for this than mocked ; 
for it is as positive as the earth is firm that 
Falstaff is there : I will go. 

Enter Page, Shallow, Slekdek, Host, Sir 
HuGu Evans, Caius, and Rugby. 

Shal. Page, &c. Vi'eU met, master Ford. 

Ford. Trust me, a good knot : I have good 
cheer at home ; and, I pray you all go wiih mo. 

SAalt. I must excuse myself, master Ford. 

Slen. And so must I, sir ; we have appointed 
to dine with mistress Anne, and I would not 
break with her for more money than I '11 speak 

Shall. Wc have lingered about a match 
between Anne Piige and my cousin Slender, and 
this day we shall have our answer. 

SU/i. I hope I have your good will, father 

Page. You have, master Slender ; I stand 
wlioUy for you -.— but my wile, master doctor, 
is for you altogether. 

1 Crid aim. Sec Note to Two Gentlemen of Vcron.i. 
Act III.. Sc. I. 

CoKEOi£& — Vol. I. 


Cains. Ay, by par; and de maid is luvc a-me : 
my uui-sh a Quickly tell mc so mu^h. 

I/osl. AVhat say you to young master Fenton? 
he capers, he dances, he has eyes of youth, he 
writes verses, he speaks holiday, he smells April 
and May : he will carry 't, he will cany 't ; 'ti? 
in his buttons;" he will carry 't. 

Page. Not by my consent, 1 proniibo vou. 
The gentleman is of no having; he kei)t com- 
pany with the wild Prince and Poins ; he is of . 
too high a region, he knows too inueh. No, he 
shall not knit a knot in his fortunes with the 
finger of my substance : if he take hei", let him 
take her simply ; the wealth I have waits on my 
consent, and my consent goes not that way. 

Ford. 1 beseech you, heartily, some of you go 
home with me to dinner : besides your cheer, 
you shall have sport ; I will show you a monster. 
— Master doctor, you shall go ; — so shall you, 
roaster Page ; — and you, sir Hugh. 

S/ut/l. Well, fare you well : — we shall have the 
freer wooing at master Page's. 

[Exeioil Shallow and Slander. 

Cains. Go home, John Ilugby ; I come anon. 

[Fxil Rugby. 

Host. Farewell, my hearts : I will to my 
honest knight FidstalT, and drink canary with 
him. [Krif lIosT. 

Ford. [Jsid<;.'] I think I shall drink in pipe- 
wine •» first with him ; I will make him dance. 
Will you go, gentles ? 

Jll. Have with you, to see this monster. 


SCENE III.— ^ room in Yard's House. 

Enter Mrs. Ford and Mrs. Page. 

Mrs. Ford. "What, John ! What, Robert ! 
Mrs. Page. Quickly, quickly. Is the buek- 

baskct — 
Mrs. Ford. I warrant : — "NVhat, Robin, I say. 

Enter Servants, with a basket. 

Mrs. Page. Come, come, come. 

Mrs. Ford. Here, set it down. 

Mrs Page. Give your men the charge; wc 
must be brief. 

Mrs. Ford. Marry, as I told you before, 
John, and Robert, be ready here hard by in tlie 
brew-house ; and when I suddenly call you, 
come forth, and (without any pause or siagger- 

A Probably an allukiontotbecuitomor wcarine the flower 
r.illeil Bachelur't bullont. But a verj- ■■ - ;.hraJe i« 
comnioii ill the midland counties: — "It in jour 

brti"-!" -," '> ■ .Mil • 1- 1. n.ii within yo\:: , " 'Ti» 

in li, IS, he i> the man to do it. 

I. y < while Falstaff rfuncc*. 


Acr III.] 



ing), take this basket ou jour shoulders : that 
done, trudge with it in all haste, and carry it 
among the whitsters" in Datchet mead, and there 
empty it in the muddy ditch, close by the 
Thames side. 

Mrs. Fage. You will do it ? 

Mrs. Ford. I have told them over and over ; 
they lack no direction : Be gone, and come when 
you are called. [E.vetai( Servants. 

Mrs. Fage. Here comes little Robin.. 

FlnteT EoBix. 

Mrs. Ford. How now, my eyas-musket?'' what 
news ^vith you ? 

Fob. My master, sir John, is come in at your 
back-door, mistress Ford ; and requests your 

Mrs. Page. You little Jack-a-lent,* have you 
been tme to us ? 

Rob. Ay, I'll be sworn: ]\Iy master knows 
not of your being here ; and hath threatened to 
put rac into evcrlaoting liberty if I tell you of it; 
for, he swears, he'll turn me away. 

Mrs. Fagc. Thou'rt a good boy ; this secrecy 
of thine shall be a tailor to thee, and shall make 
thee a new doublet and hose. I'll go hide me. 

Mrs. Ford. Do so : — Go tell thy master, I am 
alone. Mistress Page, remember you your cue. 

{Exit EoBiN. 

Mrs. Page. I warrant tliee ; if I do not act 
it, hiss me. {E.xii Mrs. Pag?:. 

Mrs. Ford. Go to then ; we'll use this un- 
wliolesome humidity, this gross watery pumpion. 
We'll teach him to know turtles from jays. 

Enter Falstatf. 

Fal. Have I caught thee, my heavenly jewel ? ^ 
"Wliy, now let me die, for 1 have lived long 
enougli ; this is the period of my ambition. 
this blessed hour ! 

Mrs. Ford. O sweet sir John ! 

Fal. Mistress Ford, I cannot cog, I cannot 

a Whilsters. — A launder is still called a wliitster; but the 
tfhitslers of the Thames were probably akin to the blanchis- 
tcunes of the Seine, and washed in the same fashion. 

b Eyas-musket. The musket is the small sparrow-hawk ; 
the ei/as is a general name for a very young hawk — the of five several names by which a falcoii is called in its 
first year. Spenser has a pretty image connected with the 
eyas : 

Youthful gay 
Like eyas-hawk up mounts into the skies, 
His newly budded pinions to essay." 

c Jnck-a-lcnI. A puppet thrown at in Lent. Thus in 
Ben Jonsun's Tale of a Tub : 

" on an Ash Wednesday, 
Where thou didst stand six weeks the Jack o' Lent 
For boys to hurl three throws a penny at thee." 

<1 " Have I caught my heavenly jewel," is the first line of 
a song in Sidney's Astrophel and Stella. In the quarto the 
lint stands without the tliee of the present te.xt. 


prate, mistress Ford. Now shall I sin in my 
wish : I would thy husband were dead. I'll 
speak it before the best lord, I would make thee 
my lady. 

Mrs. Ford. I your lady, sir John ! alas, I 
should be a pitiful lady. 

Fal. Let the court of France shew me such 
another. I see how thine eye would emulate the 
diamond: Thou hast the right arched beauty* 
of the brow, that becomes the ship-tire, the tire- 
valiant, or any tire of Venetian admittance. 

3frs. Ford. A plain kerchief, sir John : my 
brows become nothing else ; nor that well nei- 

Fal. Thou art a tjrant'' to say so: thou 
would 'st make an absolute corn-tier ; and the 
firm fixtm-e of thy foot would give an excellent 
motion to thy gait, in a semi-circled farthingale. 
I see what thou wcrt if Fortune thy foe were 
not; jNJatui-e thy friend:* Come, thou canst 
not hide it. 

3frs. Ford. Believe me, there's no such thing 

in me. 

Fal. "V^Tiat made me love thee ? let that per- 
suade thee there's something extraordinary in 
thee. Come, I cannot cog, and say thou art 
this and that, like a many of these lisping haw- 
thorn buds, that corae like women in men's ap- 
parel, and smell like Bucklersbury in simple- 
time :2 I cannot: but I love thee; none but 
thee ; and thou deservest it. 

Mrs. Ford. Do not betray me, sir. I fear 
you love mistress Page. 

Fal. Thou might'st as well say I love to walk 
by the Counter-gate ; which is as hateful to me 
as the reck of a lime-kUn. 

Mrs. Ford. Well, heaven knows how I love 
you ; and you shall one day find it. 

Fal. Keep in that mind; I '11 deserve it. 

Mrs. Ford. Nay, I must teU you, so you do ; 
or else I could not be in that mind. 

lioL [;icitliiii.'] Mistress Ford, mistress Ford ! 
here's mistress Page at the door, sweating, and 

" Arched beauty. Thus the folio; the quarto, which the 
modern editors follow, has arched bent. Surely a bent arch 
is a term in which the epithet might be dispensed with. 

b Tyrant. So the folio ; the quarto, traitor. 

c The passage in the folio stands thus: "I see what 
thou wcrt if Fortune thy foe, were not Nature thy friend." 
It is not found in the quarto. Upon Pope's correction the 
common reading is, " I see what thou wert, if Fortune thy 
foe were n't Nature is thy friend." Boswell pro))Oses to 
retain the old reading, with its original punctuation, and 
explains it thus,— 'If Fortune being thy foe, Nature were 
not thy friend.' But what would Mrs. Ford be, if both 
Fortune and Nature were leagued against her — if Fortune 
were her foe and Nature not her friend t "Fortune, my 
foe," was the beginning of an old ballad. We do not tliink 
that a perfect sense can bi; made of the passage as it stands. 
Mr. Collier proposes to read it thus : — "Nature beir/g thy 

Act 111.] 


rScEys in. 

blowiunr, aud lixtkii>g wildly, and would needs 
spe;dc with you presently. 

Ftil. She shall not see mc ; I will ensconce 
me behind the arras. 

J/r». Foni. Pray you, ilo so : she's a very 
tattling woman. [Falstavp /iit/<-s Aimscl/. 

Enlfr Mistress TaGE and EoBlN. 

What's the matter? liow now? 

Mrs. Page. O mistress Ford, what have you 
done ? You're shamed, you're overthrow!), you're 
undone for ever. 

Mrs. Ford. What's the matter, good mistress 

Mrs. Faye. well-a-day, mistress Ford ! hav- 
ing an honest man to yuur husband, to give him 
such cause of suspicion ! 

Mrf. Ftird. What cause of suspicion ? 

Mrs. Page. What cause of suspicion? — Out 
upon you ! how am I mistook in you ! 

Mrs. Ford. Why, alas! what's the matter? 

Mrs. Page. Your husband's coming hither, 
woman, with all the officers in Windsor, to 
search for a gentleman that, he says, is here 
now ••• *' - house, by your consent, to take an 
ill _-o of his absence : You arc undone. 

Mrs. Ford. 'Tis not so, I hope.* 

V '■ •. Pray heaven it be not so, that 
you ich a man here ; but 'tis most certain 

your husband's coming with half Windsor at his 
heels, to search for such a one. I come before 
to tell you. If you know yourself dear, why I 
ant glad of it : but if you have a friend here, 
convcr, convev liim out. Bo not amazed ; call 
all ■ - :;sc3 to you; defend your reputation, 
or veil to your good life for ever. 

Mrs. Ford. What shall I do ?— There is a 

' r friend ; and I fear not mine 

I as ills peril: I had rather 

than a thousand pound he were out of the house. 

Mrs. Page. For shame, never stand you had 
rather, and gou had rather ; your husband's here 
at hand ; bethink you of some conveyance : in 
the house you cannot hide him.— O, how have 
you deceived ir- ' T.-'i 
he he of any rt .. 
here ; and throw foul linen upon him, as if it 
wi • • to bucking: Or, i! ' ')me, 

SCI .y your two men to 1> . 

'^ ""k, here is a basket; if 
.stature, he may creep in 

» In ?■ 

not to, I 

JVorn ■• r 





n. In t ■: "f ilie 

• iff »g»in . upon the 

r, Mr». Poril »!> 1. •• Ji;'-ik louder." 

the two elder qnkrtof. Ily »uch 

'••. the care of the poet to avoid rcpe- 

tkilful arrangement of hU matciiali ii 

N 2 

Mrs. Ford. He's too big to go in there : What 
sh:dl T do ? 

Of-enter FalsTAKF. 

Fal. Let me see't, let-nie sce't ! O let n>c 
soe't! I'll in, I'll in; follow your friend's 
Counsel; — I 'II in. 

Mrs. Page. What! Sir John FalstafT! Arc 
these your letters, knight ? 

Fal. I love thee* Help me away : let me 
creep in here ; I '11 never — 
\lfc goes into the basket ; Ihrg cover him tcith 
foul linen. 

Mrs. Page. Help to cover your master, boy : 
Call your men, mistress Ford : — You dissembling 
knight ! 

Mrs. Ford. What John, Robert, John! [Fxit 
Robin. Re-enter Servants.] Go take up these 
clothes here, quickly; whcrc's the cowl-staff r** 
look, how you drumblc ; carry them to the 
bundrcss in Datchet mead ; quickly, come. 

Enter FoiiD, Page, Caius, and Sir IIi'gh Evans. 

Ford. Pray you, come near : if I suspect with- 
out cause, why then make sport at me, then let 
mc be your jest ; I deserve it. — Uow now ? 
whither bear you this ? 

Srv. To the liuuulress, forsooth. 

Mrs. Ford. Why, what have you to do whither 
they bear it ? You were best meddle with buck- 

Ford. Buck ? I woidd I could wash myself of 
the buck ! Buck, buck, buck ? Ay, buck ; 1 
warrant you, buck ; and of the season too, it 
shall appear. rFxeinif Servants tcith the bastet.^ 
Gentlemen, I have dnamed to-m'ght ; I'll tell 
you my dream. Here, here, here be my keys • 
ascend my chambers, .•search, seek, find out : I '11 
warrant we'll unkennel the fox: — Let ine stop 
this way first :— so, now uncapc. 

Page. Good master Ford be contented: you 
wrong yourself too much. 

Ford. Tnie, master Page. — Up, gentlemen ; 
you shall ace sport anon : follow me, gentlemen. 


Era. This is fery fantastical humours and jea- 

Caiu.1. By gar, 'ti.s no dc fashion of Franco : 
it is not jealous in France. 

Page. Nay, follow him, gentlemen ; sec the 
bsue of his search. 

{Exeunt Evans, Page, mid Caics. 

• Another rMtoiation from the quarto : — " I lore thee amd 
none hul thtf." 

b A coirlilaff ij explained to b« a Haff tued for carrying 
• bMkct with two handle*. 


Aci 111. J 


[Scene IV, 

Mrs. Farje. Is there not a double excellency 
iu this ? 

Mrs. Ford. I know not which pleases me bet- 
ter, that my husband is deceived, or sir John. 

Mrs. Tune. What a taking was lie in, when 
your husband asked what was iu the basket ! '' 

Mrs. Ford. I am half afraid he will liave need 
of washing ; so throwing him into the water will 
do him a benefit. 

Mrs. Pacje. Hang him, dishonest rascal ! I 
would all of the same strain were iu the same 

Mrs. Ford. I think my husband hath some 
special suspicion of Falstaff's being here ; for I 
never saw bun so gross in his jealousy till now. 

Mrs. Fage. I will lay a plot to try that : And 
we will yet have more tricks with Palstaff : his 
dissolute disease will scarce obey this medicine. 

Mrs. Ford. Shall we send that foolish canion, 
mistress Quickly, to him, and excuse his throw- 
ing into the water ; and give him another hope, 
to betray him to another 2)unishment ? 

Mrs. Fage. We will do it ; let him be sent 
for to-morrow eight o'clock, to have amends. 

Re-enter Tord, Page, Caius, and Sir Hugh 


Ford. 1 cannot find him : may be the knave 
Dragged of that he could not compass. 

Mrs. Page. Heard you that ? 

Mrs. Ford. You use me well, master Ford, do 

Ford. Ay, I do so. 

Mrs. Ford. Heaven make you better than 
your thoughts ! 

Ford. Amen. 

Mrs. Page. You do yourself mighty wroug, 
master Ford. 

Ford. Ay, ay ; I must bear it. 

Eva. If there be any pody in the house, and 
in the chaaibers, and in the coffers, and in the 
presses, heaven forgive my sins at the day of 
judgment ! 

Cuius. By gar, nor I too ; dere is no bodies. 

Page. Fie, fie, master Ford ! are you not 
ashamed ? What spirit, wliat devu suggests this 
imagination? I would not have your distemper 
in this kind, for the wealth of Windsor Castle. 

Ford. 'Tis my fault, master Page : I suffer 
for it. 

Eva. You suffer for a pad conscience : your 

a What was in the bcjket. The folio has who : but we are 
justilied in printing jwftai from FalstafTs speech to Brook: — 
"met the Jealous knave their master in the door; who 
usked tliem once or twice what they had in their basket '. " 


I wife is as honest a 'omaus as I -will desires 
I among five thousand, and five hundred too. 

Cuius. By gar, I see 'tis an honest woman. 
I Ford. Well ; — I promised you a dinner : — 
j Come, come, walk in the park : I pray you, 
pardon me ; I wUl hereafter make known to you 
why I have done this. — Come, wife ; — come, 
mistress Page ; I pray you pardon me ; pray 
heartUy, pardon me. 

Fage. Let's go in, gentlemen ; but, trust me, 
we'll mock him. I do iuvite you to-morrow 
morning to my house to breakfast : after, we'll 
a birdiug together ; I have a fine hawk for the 
bush : Shall it be so ? 

Ford. Any thing. 

Eva. If there is one, I sliaR make two in the 

Cuius. If there be one or two, I shall make-a 
de tird. 

Ford. Pray you go, master Page. 

Eva. I pray you now, remembrance to-morrow 
on the lousy knave, mine host. 

Caiics. Dat is good ; by gar, vit all my heart. 

Eva. A lousy knave ; to have his gibes and 
his mockeries. [Exeunt. 

SCENE IV.— ^ Room in Page's House.'' 
Enter Fenton and Mistress Anne Page. 

Fent. I see I cannot get thy father's love ; 
Therefore no more turn me to him, sweet Nan. 

Anne. Alas ! how then ? 

Fent. Why, thou must be thyself. 

He doth object, I am too great of birth ; 
And that, my state being gall'd with my expense, 
I seek to heal it only by his wealth : 
Besides these, other bars he lays before me, — • 
My riots past, my wild societies ; 
And tells me, 'tis a thiug impossible 
I should love thee, but as a property. 

Anne. !May be, he tells you true. 

Fent. No, heaven so speed me in my time to 


Albeit, I will confess thy father's wealth 
Was the fii'st motive that I woo'd thee, Anne : 
Yet, wooing thee, I found thee of more value 
Than stamps in gold, or sums in sealed bags; 
And 'tis the very riches of thyself 
That now I aim at. 

Anjie. Gentle master Fenton, 

Y'^et seek my father's love ; stiU seek it, sir : 
If opportunity and humblest suit 

a Scene W. In the quartos, this scene, altliough much 
shorter than in the folio, follows the fifth scene, where Fal- 
stafT relates his Thames adventure. The skill of the dra- 
matist is shewn in the interposition of an episode between 
the beginning and end of the catastrophe of the buck-basket. 

Act IIM 


(SC»:!IB IV 

Cannot attain it, why then. — Hark you hither. 

Sjrhei/ converse apart. 

Enter Shallow, Slexder, and Mrs. Quickly. 

Sial. Brejik their talk, mistress Quickly ; uiy 
kinsman sliall speak for himself. 

Ste-H. I '11 make a shaft or a bolt out : slid, 'tis 
but venturing. 

SAa/. Be not dismay'd. 

S.'en, 'So, she shall not dismay me : I care not 
for that, — but that I am afcard. 

Quid-. Hark ye ; master Slender would speak 
a word with you. 

Jii/ie. I come to liim. — This is my father's 
O, what a world of vile ill-favour'd faults 
Looks haiulsome in throe hundred pounds a- 



Quick. And how does good master Fenton ? 
Pray you, a word with you. 

S/ut!. She 's coming ; to her, coz. boy, thou 
hadst a father ! 

S!en. I had a father, mistress Anne; — my 
uncle can tell you good jests of him : — Pniy you, 
uncle, tell mistress Anne the jest, how my father 
s>tole two geese out of a pen, good uncle. 

Shal. Mistress Anne, my cousin loves you. 

SUn. Ay, that I do ; a^ well as I love any 
woman in Glostcrshirc. 

Shal. He will maintain you like a gentle- 

Slen. Ay, that I will, come cut and long-tail," 
under the degree of a 'squire. 

Shiit. He will make you a hundred and fifty 
(lounds jointure. 

Ahuc. Grood master Shallow, let him woo for 

Shal. Marry, I tiiank you for it; I thank you 
for that good comfort. She calls you, coz : I '11 
leave you. 

Aiin^. Now, master Slender. 

SUn. Now, good mistress Anne. 

Amhc. \\ hat is your will ? 

5" . -vfy „-i|i p 'ojj'g hcartlings, that 's a pretty 
jrf ill ne'er made my will yet, I thank 

iicaven ; I am not such a sickly creature, I give 
heaven praise. 

Anif. I iMcan, master Slender, what wnuM 
yoa with me ? 

Sim. Truly, for mine own part, I would little 
or nothing with you : Your father, and my uncle. 



dr 1 io bob tail, .t member of ihe 

*| .V Co. 

have made motions : if it be my luck, so : if not, 
happy man be his dole ! They can tell you how 
things go better than I can : You may ask your 
father ; here he comes. 

Knd-r P.\GK and Mistrtss Page. 
Paffe. Now, m;ist(T Slender :- Love jiim, 
daughter Anne.. — 
Why, how now ! what does miuitcr i'cnlun here? 
You wrong me, sir, thus still to 
1 told you, sir, my daughter is dispos'd of. 
Fent. Nay, master Page, be not impatient. 
Mrs. Page. Good master Fenton, conic not to 

my child. 
Page. She is no match for you. 
Fent. Sir, will you hear me ? 
Page. No, good master Fenton. 

Come, master Shallow ; come, son Slender, in : — 
Knowing my mind, you wrong me, master Fenton. 
[^Exeunt Page, Shallow, and Slender. 
Quick: Speak to mistress Page. 
Fent. Good mistress Page, for that I love your 
In such a righteous fashion as I do. 
Perforce, against all checks, rebukes, and man- 
I must advance the colours of my love, 
And not retire : Let me have your good will. 
Aline. Good mother, do not marry me to yond' 

^^l\<l. Page. I mean it not ; I seek you a better 

Quick. That 's my master, master doctor. 
Anne. Alas, I had rather be set quick 'i the 
.\nd bowl'd to de.ith with turnips." 

}[rs. Page. Come, trouble not yourself : CJood 
master Fenton, 
I will not be your friend, nor enemy : 
My dautrhter will I question how she loves you, 
And as I find her, so am I affeeted ; 
'Till then, farewell, sir :— She must needs go in ; 
Her father will be angry. 

[Exeunt Mr.i. Page and .\ssv.. 

Fent. Farewell, gentle mistress ; farewell. Nan. 

Quick. This is my doing now. — Nay, said I, 

will you cost away your child on a fool, and a 

physician?'' Look on master Fenton :— this is 

my doing. 

* It ii »a!cl that this is a provrrb in ' 
Wc never luMrd it. In Ben Jonnon r, 

there U a notion: "Woiild i imd U-vn net in llic 
Itroun'l, sH h'll th» ho-id nf me. nn-l h id mv bnfn* hnwl'd 
at." I 1 

the pi. r 

I ' . Ill IU1 . '•} .\^%: i" iin, i.ik iM'*i- '. itt.. ■» 'i"fy 

1 murdering oncof hii women in this barbaroua 




Art III.] 


[Scene V. 

Tent. I thank tliec ; and I pray thee, once 

Give my sweet Nan this ring : There's for thy 

pains. [Exit. 

QiiicJc. Now heaven send thcc good fortune ! 
A kind heart he bath : a woman would run 
tlirough fire and water for such a kind heart. 
But yet, I would my master liad mistress Aime; 
or I would master Slender luid her : or, in sooth, 
I would master Fenton liad her : I will do what 
I can for tliem all three ; for so I have promised, 
and I'll be as gocd as my word ; but speciously 
for master Fenton. Well, I must of another 
errand to sir John FalstafF from my two mis- 
tresses. "What a beast am I to slack it ? 


SCENE v.— J Room in the Garter Inn. 
Enter Falstaff and Bardolph. 

Fal. Bardolph, I say, — 

Bard. Here, sir. 

Fal. Go fetch me a quart of sack ; put a toast 
in't. \_Exit Bard.] Have I lived to be carried 
in a basket, like a barrow of butcher's offal ; and 
to be thrown in the Thames ? Well, if I be 
served such another trick, I '11 have ray brains 
ta'en out, and buttcr'd, and give them to a dog 
for a new year's gift. The rogues slighted me 
into the river with as little remorse as they would 
have drowned a bitch's blind puppies, fifteen i' 
the litter : and you may know by my size that 
I have a kind of alacrity in sinking ; if the bot- 
tom were as deep as hell I should down. I had 
been drowned but tluit the sliore was shelvy and 
shallow, — a death that I abhor; for the water 
swells a man ; and what a thing should I have 
been when I had been swelled ! I should have 
been a mountain of mummy. 

Tie-enter Baudolpii with the wine. 

Bard. Here's mistress Quickly, sir, to speak 
with you. 

Fal. Come let me pour in some sack to the 
Thames water ; for my belly's as cold as if I had 
swallowed snow-balls for pills to cool the reins. 
Call her in. 

Bard. Come in, woman. 

Enter 'Mrs. Quickly. 

Quick. By your leave ; T cry you mercy : 
Give your worship good-morrow. 

Fal. Take away these chalices : Go, bre\v me 
a pottle of sack finely. 

Bard. With eggs, sir ? 

Fal. Simple of itself; I '11 no pullet-sperm in 
my brewagc. — [Exit B.\RnoLPii.]— How now ? 

Quick. Marry, sii-, I came to your worship 
from mistress Ford. 

Fal. Mistress Ford ! I liave had ford enough : 
I was thrown into the ford : I have my belly 
full of ford. 

Quirk. Alas the day ! good heart, that was not 
her fault : she does so take on with her men ; 
they mistook their erection. 

Fal. So did I mine, to build upon a foolish 
woman's promise. 

Qicick. Well, she laments, sir, for it, that it 
would yearn youi- heart to see it. Her husband 
goes this morning a Ijirding : she desires you 
once more to come to her between eight and 
nine. I must carry her word quickly : she'll 
make you amends, I warrant you. 

Fal. Well, I will visit her : Tell her so ; and 
bid her think what a man is : let her consider 
his frailty, and then judge of my merit. 

Quick. I will tell her. 

Fal. Do so. Between nine and ten, say'st 
thou ? 

Quick. Eight and nine, sir. 

Fal. Well, be gone : I will not miss her. 

Quick. Peace be with you,, sir. \_Exit. 

Fal. I marvel I hear not of master Brook ; he 
sent me word to stay within : I like his money 
well. O here he comes. 

Enter Ford. 

Ford. Bless you, sir ! 

Fed. Now, master Brook ? you come to know 
what hath passed between me and Ford's wife. 

Ford. That, indeed, sir John, is my business. 

Fal. Master Brook, I will not lie to you : I 
was at her house the hour she appointed me. 

Ford. And sped '^ you, sir ? 

Fal. Very ill-favouredly, master Brook. 

Ford. How so, sir ? Did she change her de- 
form ination ? 

Fal. No, master Brook ; but the peaking cor- 
nuto her husband, master Brook, dwelling in a 
continual 'larum of jealousy, comes me in the 
instant of our encounter, after we had embraced, 
kissed, protested, and, as it were, spoke the pro- 
logue of our comedy ; and at his heels a rabble 
of his companions, thither provoked and insti- 
gated by his distemper, and forsooth, to search 
his house for his wife's love. 

Ford. What, while you were there ? 

Fal. While I was there. 

Ford. And did he search for you and could 
not find you ? 

Fal. You shall hear. As good luck would have 

^ Sped tjnu. Malonc would read Aow sped you? 'QvAspcd 
you does not require the addition. 

Act rit ] 


[Scene V. 

it comes in one mistress Page ; gives iutclligcnco 
of Ford's approach ; and, in her invention and 
Ford's wife's distraction, they convoyed me into 
a buck-basket. 

Ford. A buck-basket ? 

Fill. Yes, a buck-baskot : raninied nic in with 
foul shirts and smocks, socks, foul stockings, 
greasy napkins; that, master Brook, there was 
the rankest compound of viUainous smell that 
ever offended nostril. 

Ford. And how long lay you there ? 

Fal. Nay, you shall hear, master Brook, what 
I have suffered to bring this woman to evil for 
your good. Being thus cranuned in the b;isket, 
a couple of Ford's knaves, his hinds, were called 
forth by their mistress, to carry me in the name 
of foul clothes to Datchct-lane : they took me on 
their shoulders ; met the jealous knave their 
master in the door; who asked them once or 
twice what they had in tlieir basket : I quaked 
for fear lest the lunatic knave would have 
searched it ; but fate, ordaining he should be a 
cuckold, held his hand. Well : on went he for 
a search, and away went I for foul clothes. But 
mark the sequel, master Brook : I suffered the 
pangs of three several deaths : first, an intoler- 
able fright, to be detected with a jealous rotten 
bell-wether : next, to be compassed, like a good 
bilbo, in the circumference of a peck, hilt to 
point, heel to head : and then, to be stopped in, 
like a strong distillation, with stinking clothes 
that fretted in their own grease : think of that, 
— a man of my kidney, — think of that ; that am 
as subject to heat, as butter ; a man of continual 
dissolution and thaw ; it was a miracle to 'scape 
suffocation. And in the height of this bath, when 

I was more than half stewed in grease, like a 
Dutch dish, to be thrown into the Thames, and 
cooled, glowing hot, in that surge, like a horse- 
shoe ; think of that,— hissing hot, — think of that, 
master Brook. 

Ford. In good sadness, sir, I am sorry that 
for my sake you have suffered all this. !^Iy suit 
then is desperate ; you'll undertake her no more. 

Fill. ^Master Brook, I will be thrown into 
Etna, as 1 have been thrown into Thames, ere I 
will leave her thus. Her husband is this morning 
gone a birdiug: I have received from her 
another embassy of meeting ; 'twixt eight and 
nine is the hour, master Brook. 

Ford. 'Tis past eight already, sir. 

Fal. Is it ? I will then address me to my ap- 
pointment. Come to mc at your convenient lei- 
sure, and you shall know how I speed ; and the 
conclusion shall be crowned with your enjoying 
her : Adieu. You shall have her, master Brook ; 
master Brook, you shall cuckold Ford. [^Esit. 

Ford. Hum ! ha ! is this a vision ? is this a 
dream ? do I sleep ? Master Ford, awake ; awake, 
master Ford ; there's a hole made in your best 
coat, master Ford. This 'tis to be married ! this 
'tis to have linen and buck-baskets I— Well, I 
will proclaim myself what 1 am : I will now take 
the lecher; he is at my house : he cannot 'scape 
mc ; 'tis impossible he should ; he cannot creep 
into a halfpenny piirsc, nor into a pepper-box ; 
but, lest the devil that guides him should aid 
him, I will search impossible places. Though 
what I am I cannot avoid, yet to be what I would 
not shall not make me tame : If I have horns to 
make mc mad, let the proverb go with mc, I '11 
be horn mad. \Fxit. 


^ ■■ iliS rogues Mightcd me into the river. "j 


' Scene I. — " To shallov) rivers, to whose falls." 

The exquisite little poem whence this couplet is 
quoted, has, strange to say, never yet, as a whole, 
been " married to immortal notes ; " though the 
first, second, fourth, and fifth stanzas are set as 
a four-part glee by Webbe, and, of the kind, a 
more beautiful composition cannot be named. 

Sir John Hawkins says, " The tune to which 
the former {I.e. Marlowe's poem) was sung, I liave 

lately discovered iu a MS. as old as Shakspere's 
time, and it is as follows." He then givrs the 
melody only, as below. To this we have added a 
.simple bass and accompaniment, such as we can 
imagine the composer himself designed. For the 
period in v/hich it was written, the air has merit, 
though the false accentuation, the contempt or 
ignoi'ance of prosody, in the ninth bar, will be 
obvious to all. 


Come live with me, 


be my 

love, And we will 


all the plea - sures prove, 

• _g 



















That hills and val - leys, dale and 












field, And all 

the cran; - cy moun - tains 







The lines which Sir Hugh Evana huraa over 
ore a scrap of a sung whieh we find in that iJelicioua 
pitstonil scene of Is-uie Walton, where the ungK-i-s 
meet the milk-miiid ami her mother, aud hiar them 
siuiij "That smooth soug wliich w;ks made by Kit 
Marlowe, now at leiist fifty years ago; .... old 
fashioned poetry, but choieely good." Sir Hugh 
Evans in his " trentpling of mind " roisquotca the 
lines, introducing a passngo fi\)Mi the oUl version 
of tho 137th Psalm, 

When as I tat In Pabylon." 

Warbnrton. who had tho good taste to print in his 
edition of Shakspere this poem, with tho "answer 
to it, which w:i- Sir Walter Haleigh, in his 

younger days," ,. to Walton, a8.sii,'ns that of 

'The I'assionate Shepherd' to Shakspero himself. 
It ia found in the edition of .Shaksperoa Sonnets, 
printed by Jau'gard in 1599 ; but ia given to Marlowe 
in ' England's Helicon,' IGOO. We cannot omit this 
"old fiishioned poetry, but choicely good." Tho 
Torseaare variously printed in different collections. 
Our copy is taken from Percy's llolitiues ; with the 
exception of the stanza in brackets. 


" Come live with me, and be my love. 
And we will all the plraoiret prove 
That hills and vallics, dale and ficlil, 
And all the cra^in^ mounlaint yield. 

There will we sit upon i.ii i . i.-. 

And see the shepherds feed their dock* 

Dy shallow rivers, to who>c fnlU 

Mt-lodiuus birdi ilng madrigals : 

There will 1 ' ' .• beds of roses 

With a tliou r int posies, 

A c.ip of tluwcri, .aid a kirdc 

Ii!!l>ro!(I-rM sll with l<-!tvr» of Miyrlle; 

.\ vool, 

\'. 1 we pull; 

S Id; 

W . . ■ • ; 

A belt of Bliaw am! ivy buds, 

With coral clasps, and amber studs: 

And If these pleasures may thcc move, 

Tlit-n live with me, and be my lovr. 

[Thy silver dinhei for tliy meat, 

As precious as the Kods do eat. 

Shall on an ivory table bo'd each day for thcc and me.] 

The shepherd swains sh.^ll dance and sinjt. 

For thy delight each May morning : 

If these delights thy mind may move. 

Then live with me and be my love." 

» ScKSE III. — " BuckUvibury in $implt timt." 

Buekler.sbiiry, in tho timo of .'^1 ' wa* 

chiefly inhabited by driifrt;i«t-<, wh^ ; tho 

office of tho herbalist, and filled the an «iih tho 
fragrance of rosein.iry and lavender in " Himplo 
time." Tho materijils for tho following repre^'ii' > 
tion arederived from .-Vggna'a Map if London, li')^ 

**^'. ~^^ 




When Mistress Ford is plotting the adventure 
of the buck-basket with Mistress Page, she directs 
her servants thus : " Take this basket on your 
shoulders : that done, trudge with it in all haste, 
and carry it among the whitstcrs in DatchetMead, 
and there empty it in the muddy ditch close by 
the Thames side." When Falstaff describes his 
misfortune to Bardolph, he says, " Have I lived to 
be carried in a basket like a barrow of butcher's 

offal, and to be thrown into the Thames The 

rogues slighted me into the river I had been 

drowned, but that the shore was shelvy and shal- 
low." Again to Ford he says, " A couple of Ford's 
knaves, his hinds, were called forth by their mis- 
tress to carry me in the name of foul clothes to 
Datchet Lane." Datohet Mead, although the 
name is not now in use, was all that flat ground, 
now enclosed by a wall, lying under the north 
terrace. The street which leads to it is still called 
Datchet Lane. The road now passes round the park 
wall to Datchet by a very circuitous route; but 
before the enclosure of the mead in the time of 
William III. the roai passed across it. It is pro- 

bable, therefore, that the shore being " shelvy and 
shallow," the Thames overflowed the mead in part ; 
so that the whitsters might " bleach their summer 
smocks " upon the wide plain which the Thames 
still occasionally inundates. Probably some creek 
flowed into it, which Mistress Ford denominated a 
" muddy ditch." The most ancient representation 
which we can find of this locality, is a print pub- 
lished in the time of Queen Anne, in which the 
mead is represented as enclosed by its present wall, 
within which is a triple belt of elms, with two 
formal avenues at equal distances, and an enormous 
embanked pond in the centre. The river below 
Windsor Bi-idge divides into two streams as at pre- 
sent. The locality of the design at the end of this 
Act, is placed as near as may be to Datchet Lane. 
We subjoin a view of the old bridge connecting' 
Windsor and Eton, as given in this very curious 
print. Tlie vignette which we have given at the 
end of Act I., as the scene where Mr. Page trained 
his "fallow greyhounl," is the western extremitv 
of Unnnemede. 



;"0!it of my door, you witch.") 


SCENE \.—The Street. 

Enter Mm. Page, Mrs. Quickly, and AVilliam. 

Mrs. Page. Is he at master Ford's already, 
lliink'st tliou? 

Quick. Sure be is by tliis ; or will be pre- 
sently : but truly be is very courageous mad, 
about his throwing into the water. Mistress 
Ford desires you to come suddenly. 

Mrs. Page. I'll be with her by-and-by ; I'll 
but bring my yoxuig man here to school. Look, 
where his master comes ; 'tis a playing day, I sec. 

Enter Sir IIuGii Evans. 

IIow now, sir Hugh? no school to-day ? 

Eca. No ; master Slender is let the boys leave 
to play. 

Quick. Blessing of his heart ! 

Mr». Page. Sir Hugh, my husb?.nd sajis my 
son profits nothing in the world at his book. I 
pray you, ask him some questions in his accidence. 

Eca. Come hither, William ; hold up your 
head ; come. 

Mrt. Puje Come on, sirrah : hold up your 
head ; answer your master, be not afraid. 

Eca. William, how many numbers is in nouns ? 

//'///. Two, 

Quick. Truly, I thought there had been one 
number more ; because they say, od's nouns. 

Eca. Peace your tattlings. AVhat is/air, Wil- 
liam ? 

IFill. Pulcher. 

Quick. Poulcats ! there are fairer things than 
poulcats, sure. 

Era. You arc a very simplicity *oman ; I pray 
you, peace. What is lapi.-i, William? 

Will. A stone. 

Era. .And what is a stone, William? 

Will. A pebble. 

Eca. No, it is lapit ; I pray you remcmbcj in 
your prain. 

Will, hi pis. 

Eca. That is a good William. What is he, 
William, that does lend articles ? 

//'/■//. Articles arc borrowed of tiic ])ronouii ; 
and be thus defined, Sin>julari(er, nominatico, 
hie, h/tc, hoc. 

Eca. Nomina lieu, hiy, ho.j, ho'j ;— pray you, 
mark : y<'«iV/Vo, hujus : Well, wliat is your aau- 
satire case ? 


An IV.] 


[Scene II. 

Will. Accnsafivo, hinc. I pray you, have your remembrance, 
child ; Accusativo, Jiing, hang, hog. 

Quick. Hang hog is Latin for bacon, I war- 
rant you."' 

Eca. Leave your prabbles, 'omau. What is 
the focative case, William ? 

inil. O — vocativo, O. 

'Eca. Remember, William, focative is, caret. 

Cluiclc. And that's a good root. 

Eva. 'Oman, forbear. 

Mrs. Page. Peace. 

Eoa. Wliat is your genitive case plural, William ? 

Will. Genilice case ? 

Eva. Ay. 

Will. Genitive, — honm, harum, honm. 

Quick. 'Vengeance of Jenny's case! fie on 
her ! — never name her, child, if she be a whore. 

Eva. For shame, 'oman. 

(luick. You do ill to teach the child such 
words : he teaches him to hick and to hack, 
which they'll do fast enough of themselves, and 
to call horum : — fie upon you ! 

Eva. 'Oman, art thou lunatics ? hast thou no 
understandings for thy cases, and the numbers 
of the genders ? Thou art as foolish christian 
creatm-es as I would desires. 

Mrs. Page. Prithee, hold thy peace. 

Eva. Shew me now, William, some declen- 
sions of your pronouns. 

Will. Forsooth, I have forgot. 

Eva. It is qici, qua, quod ; if you forget your 
quies, your qjc^s, and your qnods, you must be 
preeches. Go youi- ways, and play, go. 

Mrs. Page. He is a better scholar than I 
thought he was. 

Eva. He is a good sprag'' memory. Farewell, 
mistress Page. 

Mrs. Page. Adieu, good sir Hugh. [Exit Sir 
.Hugh.] Get you home, boy. — Come, we stay 
too long. [Exeunt. 

SCENE 11.—^ Room in Ford's House. 
Enter Falstaff atid Mrs. Fobd. 

Eal, Mistress Ford, your sorrow hath eaten 
up my sufferance : I sec you arc obsequious in 

» Hang hog, SiX. This joke is in all probability derived 
from tlie traditionary anecdote of Sir Nlcliolas Hacoii, wliich 
is told by Lord Bacon in liis Apoplitliepnis : "Sir Nicliolas 
Bacon being judge of the Northern Circuit, whin he came 
to pass sentence upon tlie malefartors, was by one of them 
mightily importuned to save his life. When nothing he had 
said would avail, he at length desired his mercy or. account 
of kindred. Prithee, said my lord, how came that in ? Why 
if it j)leise you. my lord, your name is Bacon and mine is 
Jfog, and in all ages Hog and Bacon are so near kindred fluit 
they are not to be separated. Ay but, replii-d the judge, you 
and I cannot be of kindred unless you be hanged ; for Hog 
is not Bacon till it ho well hang'd." 

h Sprag — quick, lively. 


your love, and I profess requital to a hair's 
breadth ; not only, mistress Ford, in the simple 
oifice of love, but in all the accoutrement, com- 
plement, and ceremony of it. But are you sure 
of your husband now ? 

Mrs. Ford. He's a birding, sweet sir John. 

Mrs. Page. [Within.'] l'\1iat hoa, gossip Ford! 
what hoa ! 

IFrs. Ford. Step into the chamber, sir John. 

[Exit Falstaff. 
Enter Mrs. Page. 
31rs. Page. How now, sweetheart ? who 's at 
home beside yoiu'self ? 

Mrs. Ford. Why, none but mine own people. 

Mrs. Page. Indeed ? 

Mrs. Ford. No, certainly ;— Speak louder. 


Mrs. Page. Tridy, I am so glad you have no 
body here. 

ifrs. Ford. Why ? 

Mrs. Page. Why, woman, your husband is in 
his old luues" again : he so takes on yonder with 
my liusband ; so rails against aU married man- 
kind; so curses all Eve's daughters, of what 
complexion soever; and so buffets himself on 
the forehead, crying Peer-out, peer-ottt ! that 
any madness I ever yet beheld seemed but tamc- 
ness, civility, and patience, to this his distemper he 
is in now ; I am glad the fat knight is not here. 

Mrs. Ford. Why, does he talk of him ? 

Mrs. Page. Of none but him ; and swears he 
was carried out, the last time he searched for 
him, m a basket : protests to my husband he is 
now here ; and hath drawn him and the rest of 
their company from their sport, to make another 
experiment of liis suspicion ; but I am glad the 
knight is not here : now he shall see his own 

]\[rs. Ford. How near is he, mistress Page ? 

Ifrs. Page. Hard by ; at street end ; he will 
be here anon. 

Mrs. Ford. I am undone ! — tlie knight is here. 

Mrs. Page. Why then you are utterly ashamed, 
and he's but a dead man. What a woman are 
you ? — Away with him, away with him ; better 
sliame than murder. 

Mrs. Ford. Which way should he go ? how 
should I bestow him ? Shall I put him into the 
basket again ? 

Re-enter Falstaff. 

Fal. No, I'll come no more i' the basket : May 
I not go out ere he come ? 

a Lunes. The folio has lines; the quarto, "his old vein." 
Theobald changed lines to liincs, wliicli is the received 
reading. Old lines may he the same as old courses, old 
humours, old vein. 

Act IV.J 


rSiiXi: II 

Mrs. Page. Alas, three of master Ford's bro- 
(liers watch the door with pistols, that iioue shall 
issue out ; otherwise you might slip away ere he 
came. But wliat make you here ? 

Fal. What shall I do ?— I'U creep up iuto the 

.1//*. Ford. There they iilways u^c to dis- 
charge their birding pieces : Creep iuto the kiln 

Fal. Where is it r 

Mrs. Ford. lie will seek there, on my word. 
Neither press, coffer, chest, trunk, well, vault, 
but he hath an abstract for the remembrauce of 
such places, and goes to them by his note : There 
is uo hidiug you in the house. 

FaL I'll go out then. 

Mrs. Fage. If you go out in your own sem- 
blance, vou die, sir John. Unless vou pro out 
disguised, — 

.1//*. Ford. How might we disguise him ? 

Mrs. Page. Alas the day, I know not. There 
is no woman's gown big enough for him ; other- 
wise he might put on a hat, a muffler, and a 
kerchief, and so escape. 

Fal. Good hearts devise something : any 
extremity, rather than a mischief. 

Mrs. Ford. My maid's aunt, the fat woman of 
Brentford, has a gown above. 

Mrs. Page. On my word, it will serve him ; 
she is as big as he is : and there's her thrum'd 
hat, and her muffler too : Run up, sir John. 

Mrs. Ford. Go, go, sweet sir John : mistress 
Page and I will look some linen for your head. 

Mrs. Page. Quick, quick ; we'll come dress 
put on the gown the while. 

\_Exit l-'ALSTArr. 
I would my husband would meet 
shape : he cannot abide the old 
woman of Brentford ; he swears she's a witch ; 
forbade her my house, and hath threatened to 
beat her. 

Mrs. Page. Heaven guide him to thy hus- 
band's cudgel ; and the devil guide his cudgel 
afterwards ! 

Mrs. Ford. But is my husband comuig P 

Mrs. Page. Ay, in good .sadness, is he ; and 
talks of the basket too, howsoever he hath had 

Mrs. Ford. We'll try that ; for I '11 appouii 
my men to carry the basket again, to meet him 
at the door with it, as they did last time. 

Mrs. Page. Nay, but he'll be here presently : 
lot's go dress him like the witch of Brentford. 

Mrs. Ford. I'll first direct my men what tliry 
shall do with the basket. Go up, I '11 briny 
linen for him straight. \_ExU. 

vou straif'ht 

Mrs. Ford. 
him in this 

Mrs. Page. Hang him, di>liuii(.;,i \;inci : v.e 
camiot misuse him enougli." 

^Ve'll leave a proof, by that which we will do, 
AVivcs mav be merrv and vet h' 

We do not act that often jest ai; _ . . 

'Tis old but true, Still swine eat all the drafl'. 


Ite-enter Mrs. FoRD, vith Itco Scnants. 

Mrs. Ford. Go, sirs, take the basket again on 
your shouldei-s ; your muster is hard at door ; if 
he bid you set it dowii, obey him : quickly, des- 
patch. rr-'V. 

1 Sert. Come, come, take it up. 

2 Sere. Pray heaven it be not full of knight 

1 Serv. I hope not ; 1 had as lief bear so much 

Enter FoKD, Page, Suaxlow, Caius, and Sir 


Ford. Ay, but if it prove tnie, master Page, 
have you any way then to unfool me aguiu.— Sot 
down the basket, villain : — Somebody call my 
wife : — Youth in a basket ! '— O, you paudcrly 
rascsls ! there's a knot, a ging,*" a pack, a con- 
spiracy against mc : Now shall the devil be 
shamed. What ! wife, I say ! — Come, come 
forth. Behold wliat honest clothes you send 
forth to bleaching. 

Page. Why, this passes ! Master Ford, you 
are not to go loose any longer ; you must be 

Eva. Whv, tills is lunatics ! this is mad as a 
mad dog ! 

S/ial. Indeed, master Ford, this is not well ; 

Eii/er Mrs. Fokd. 

Ford. So say I too, sir.— Come, hither, mis- 
tress Ford; mistress Ford, the honest woman, 
the modest wife, the virtuous creature, that hath 

» The fulio of 1623 read* " atUute rnoiigk." The >ccond 

f" ' ' '•■-••rf. .1 ^i„ — "we cannot misuiv him enough ;" — 
ircil reading. Malone »a}rs him wai acci- 

ba« " 

read, it i. 
mode in «: 
thoughts. i-OT 
tlv:; rrl'-< n- f r 

ihe •• 

:id folio 
»• The 

ihc wit. Tht U5i3 kntjitt aj he 

,, riy 



wifr. ' lie 


ba*kct," ana not to Mutress toril. 

Act IV.] 


[Scene II, 


the jealous fool to licr husbaua :- 
without cause, mistress, do I ? 

Mrs. Ford. Heaven be my witness you do, if 
you suspect me of any dishonesty. 

Ford. Well said, brazen-face ; hold it out.— 
Come forth, sirrah. 

IF/ills the clothes out of the basket. 
Page. This passes ! 

Mrs. Ford. Are you not ashamed ? let the 
clothes alone. 

Ford. I shall find you anon. 
Eva. 'Tis unrepsonable ! Will you take up 
your wife's clothes ? Come away. 
Ford. Empty the basket, I say. 
Mrs. Ford. Why, man, why, — 
Ford. [Master Page, as I am a man, there was 
one conveyed out of my house yesterday in this 
basket : Why may not he be there again ? In 
ray house I ain sure he is : my intelligence is 
true; my jealousy is reasonable: Pluck me out 
all the linen. 

Mrs. Ford. If you find a man there, he shall 
die a flea's death. 

Fai/c. Here 's no man. 

Shut. By my fidelity, this is not well, master 
Ford ; this wrongs you. 

Eva. blaster Ford, you must pray, and not 
follow the imaginations of your own heart : this 
is jealousies. 

Ford. Well, he's not here I seek for. 
Page. No, nor no where else, but in your 

l''ord. Help to search my house this one time : 
if I find not what I seek, shew no colour for my 
extremity, let me for ever be your table-sport ; 
let them say of me. As jealous as Ford, that 
searched a lioUow wabut for his wife's leman. 
Satisfy me once more ; once more search with 

Mrs. Fold. What lioa, mistress Page ! come 
you, and the old woman, down; my husband 
will come into the chamber. 

Ford. Old woman ! What old woman's that ? 
Mrs. Ford. Why, it is my maid's aunt of 

Ford. A witch, a quean, an old cozening 
quean ! Have I not forbid her my house ? She 
comes of errands, does she ? We are simple 
men; we do not know what's brought to pass 
uiuler the profession of fortune-telling. She 
works by charms, by spells, Ijy the figure, and 
sueli daubei7 as this is ; beyond our element : 
we know nothing. — Come down, you witch, you 
hag you ; come down 1 say. 

Mrs. Ford. Nay, good, sweet husband ; — good 
gentlemen, let him not strike the old woman. 

Eater Falstaff in women's clothes, led bij Mrs. 

Mrs. Page. Come, mother Prat, come, give me 
your hand. 

Ford. I'll prat her : Out of my door, you 

witch, \]jeats ///;?/,] you rag, you baggage, you 
polecat, you ronyon ! out ! out ! Pll conjure you, 
I'll fortune-tell you. \Exit Falstaff. 

Mrs. Page. Are you not ashamed ? I think you 
have killed the poor woman. 

Mrs. Ford. Nay, he will do it :— 'Tis a goodly 
credit for you. 

Ford. Ilang lier, witch ! 
Em. By yea and no, I think, the 'oman is a 
witch indeed: I like not when a 'oman has a 
great peard ; I spy a great peard under her 

Ford. Will you follow, gentlemen ? I beseech 
you, follow; see but the issue of my jealousy: if 
I cry out thus upon no trail, never trust mc 
when I open again. 

Page. Let's obey his humour a little further : 
Come, gentlemen. 

{Exeunt Page, Foiid, Shallow, and Evans. 
Mrs. Page. Trust me, he beat him most 

Mrs. Ford. Nay, by the mass, that he did 
not ; he beat him most unpitifuUy, methought. 

Mrs. Page. I'll have the cudgel hallowed and 
hung o'er the altar; it hath done meritorious 

Mrs. Ford. What think you ? May we, with 
the warrant of womanhood, and the witness of a 
good conscience, pursue him with any fui-thcr 
revenge ? 

Mrs. Page. The spirit of wantonness is, sure, 
scared out of him : if the devil have him not in 
fec-simplc, with fine and recovery, he will 
never, I think, in the way of waste, attempt us 

Mrs. Ford. Shall we tell our husbands how 
we have sci-ved him ? 

Mrs. Page. Yes, by all means ; if it be but to 
scrape the figures out of your husband's brains. 
If they can find in their hearts the poor uuvir- 
tuous fat knight shall be any further afflicted, we 
two will still be the ministers. 

Mrs. Ford. V\\ warrant they'll have him 
publicly shamed : and, methinks, there would be 

n This is one of the many examples of Shakspere's legal 
knowledge. He certainly knew much more of law than 
his commentators. Ritson, iipon this passa^'e, says, " fee- 
simple is the ;n;77(?.?< estate, and line and recovery the s/ronje«< 
assurance, known to Enplish law." Surely the passage 
means that the devil liad Falstaff as an entire estate, with 
the power of harring entail -of disposins of him according 
to his own desire;— as absolute a power as any self-willed 
person, such as the devil is said to be, could wish. 

Act IV.) 


[Scene IV. 

no period to the jest," should he uot be publicly 

Mrs. Page. Come, to the forgo with it then, 
shape it : 1 would uot Iiave things cool. 


SCENE III.— J Room in the Garter lun. 
Enter Host and Bardolpii. 

Bunt. Sir, the Germans desire to have three 
of your horses : the duke himself will be to- 
morrow at couit, and they are going to meet 

Host. What duke should that be comes so 
secretly ? I hear uot of him in the court : Let 
me speak with the geutlemeu; they speak 
English ? 

Bard. Ay, sir ; I '11 call them to you. 

Host. They sliall have my horses ; but I '11 
make them pay, I '11 sauce them : they have had 
my house a week at command ; I have tiuTied 
away my other guests: they must come off; I'll 
sauce them -. Come. \_E.reunt. 

SCENE IV.— J Room in Eord'i House. 

Enter Page, Ford, Mrs. Page, Mrs. Ford, and 
Sir Hugh Evans. 

Ecu. 'Tis one of the pest discretions of a 
'oman as ever I did look upon. 

Page. And did he send you both these letters 
at an instant ? 

Mrs. Page. Within a quarter of an houi-. 

Ford. Pardon me, wife : Henceforth do wliat 
thou wilt ; 
I rather will suspect the sun with cold'' 
Than thee with wantonness : now doth (liy 

honour stand. 
In him that was of late an heretic, 
As firm as faith. 

Page. 'Tis w ell, 'tis well ; no more : 

Be not as extreme in submission 
As in offence ; 

But let our plot go forward : let our wives 
Yet once again, to make us public sport, 
Appoint a meeting with this old fat fellow, 
Where we may take him, and disgrace him 
for it. 

Ford. There is no better way than that they 
spoke of. 

» No period to the jeat — we should have to keep on the 
jest in other foims, unless his public shame concluded it. 
There 'would be no end to the jest. 

b Cold. The folio reads gold. Rowe changed the word 
to cold, which is perhaps the true rcadinf^. To suspect the 
sun with co/d may mean to suspect the sun of being cor- 
rupted with gold : yet with cold {'//cold) is moie properly in 
apposition with wantonneis (of wantonness.) 

Pa^e. How ! to send him word they'll meet 
him in the park at midnight-, fic, lie; he'll 
never come. 

Eca. You say, he has been thrown in the 
rivers ; and has been grievously peaten, as an 
old 'oman ; methinks, there should be terrors in 
him that he siiould not come; methinks, his 
llesh is punished, he shall have no desires. 
Page. So thiidc I too. 

Mrs. Ford. Devise but how you'll use him 
when he comes, 
And let us two devise to bruig him thither. 
Mrs. Page. There is an old tale goes, that 
Heme the hunter, 
Sometime a keeper here in Windsor forest. 
Doth all the winter time, at still midnight, 
■\Valk round about an oak, with great ragg'd 

horns ; 
And there he blasts the tree, and takes" the 

cattle ; 
;\jid mtJces milch-kine yield blood, and shakes a 

In a most hideous and dreadful manner : 
You have heard of such a spirit ; and well yuu 

The superstitious idle-headed eld 
Received, and did deliver to our ago, 
This talc of Heme the hunter for a truth. 
Page. Why, yet there want not many that do 
In deep of night to walk by this Ueruc's oak : 
But what of this ? 

Mrs. Ford. !Marry, this is our device ; 
That Falstaff at that oak shall meet with us, 
[Disgiused like Heme, with huge horns on Ids 
Page. Well, let it not be doubted but he'll come. 
And in this shape : When you have brought 

him thither. 
What shall be done with him? what is your plot? 
Mrs. Page. That likewise have we thought 
upon, and thus : 

» Takes — seizes with As in Lear, 

" Strike her young bones, 
Ye taking airs." 
I» This line Is not in the folio ; but it is certainly wanting. 
The passage in tht- quarto in which this line occurs is a 
remarkable example of the caro with which the first sketcli 
has been improved . 

" Hear my device. 
Oft have you heard since Jloriie the hunter died, 
Th;it women to affright their little children 
Sa\ s that he walks in shape of a (;reat stag. 
Now, for that FalstalTe hath been so deceived 
As that he d,?res not venture to the house. 
We'll send him word to meet us in the field. 
Disguised like Home, with hug'.- horns on his h'ad. 
The hour bh;i:l be just between twelve and one, 
And at that time we will meet him both: 
Tlien wiiuld I have you present there at hand. 
With little boys diguised and drest like fairies, 
For to affright fat Falstaffe in the woods." 


Act IV.] 


[SCEN3 Y. 

Nan Page my daughter, and my little son, 

And three or four more of their growth, we 'U 

Like TU'chins, ouphes," and fairies, green and 

With rounds of waxen tapers on their heads. 
And rattles in their hands ; upon a sudden, 
As Falstaff, she, and I, are newly met. 
Let them from forth a saw-pit rush at once 
AV'ith some diffused'' song ; upon their sight, 
We two in. great amazedness wiU fly : 
Then let them aU encircle him aboul. 
And fairy-like, to-pinch*= the unclean knight ; 
And ask him, why, that hour of fairy revel. 
In their so sacred paths he dares to tread. 
In shape profane. 

Mrs. Ford. And till he tell the truth, 

Let the supposed fairies pinch him sound. 
And burn him with their tapers. 

3fr.'j. F(/r/e. The truth being known, 

We'U all present ourselves ; dis-horn the spirit. 
And mock him home to Windsor. 

Ford. The children must 

Be practised well to this, or they'll ne'er do't. 

Fva. I wiU teach the children their bchavioui-s ; 
and I will be like a jack-aii-apes also, to burn 
the knight with my tabcr. 

Ford. That will be excellent. I'll go buy them 

]\frs. Par/e. ISIy Kan shall be the queen of all 
the fairies, 
Finely attired in a robe of white. 

Par/e. That silk will I go buy ! — and in that 
Shall master Slender steal my Nan away, [Aside. 
And maiTy her at Eton. — Go, send to Falstaff 
Ford. Nay, I'll to him again, in name of 
Brook ; 
He'll tell me all his purpose : Sure, he'll come. 
Mrs. Parje. Fear not you that : Go, get us 
And tricking for our fairies. 

Fca. Let us about it: It is admirable plea- 
sui-es, and fery honest knaveries. 

\Fxeiuit Page, Foud, and Evans. 
Mrs. Page. Go, mistress Ford, 
Send quickly to Sir John, to know his mind. 

\Exil Mrs. FoKD. 
I '11 to the doctor ; he hath my good will, 

n Om/)/im— goblins, 
b Diffused— vi'M. 

c Topinih; to as a prefix to a verb is frequent in 
Spenser : as 

" With locks all loose, and raiment all to-tore." 
Wo find it in Milton's Comus: 

" Were all to-ruflled and sometimes impair'd." 

And none but he, to marry with Nan Page. 
That Slender, though \vell landed, is an idiot ; 
And he my husband best of all affects : 
The doctor is well money'd, and his friends 
Potent at com-t ; he, none Init he, shall have her, 
Though twenty thousand worthier come to crave 
her. \E.veu)it. 

SCENE N.—A Room in the Garter Inn. 
Fnter Host and Simple. 

Host. What would'st thou have, boor ? what, 
thick-skin ? speak, breathe, discuss ; brief, short, 
quick, snap. 

Sim. Marry, sir, I come to speak with sir John 
Falstaff from master Slender. 

Host. There's his chamber, his house, his 
castle, his standing-bed, and truckle-bed ; ^ 'tis 
painted about with the story of the prodigal, 
fresh and new : Go, knock and call ; he'll speak 
like an Anthropophaginian unto thee : Knock, 
I say. 

Sim. There's an old woman, a fat woman, 
gone up into his chamber : I '11 be so bold as 
stay, sir, tUl she come down; I come to speak 
with her, indeed. 

Host. Ha ! a fat woman ! the knight may be 
robbed: I'll caU.— Bidly knight! Bully sir 
John ! speak from tliy lungs military : Art thou 
there ? it is thine host, tliine Ephesian, calls. 

Fal. [atjove.'] How now, mine host ? 

Host. Here's a Bohemian-Tartar tarries the 
coming down of thy fat v/oman. Let her 
descend, bully, let her descend; my chambers 
are honourable : Eye ! privacy ? fye ! 

Enter Falstapf. 

Fal. There was, mine host, an old fat woman 
even now witli me ; but she 's gone. 

Sim. Pray you, sir, was't not the wise woman 
of Brentford P'' 

F'al. Ay, marry, was it, muscle-sheU: What 
would you with her ? 

Sim. ]\Iy master, sir, my master Slender, sent 
to her, seeing her go thorough the streets, to 
know, sir, whether one Nym, sir, that beguiled 
him of a chain, had the chain, or no. 

Fal. 1 spake with the old woman about it. 

Sim. And what says she, I pray, sir ? 

Fal. Marry, slie says, that the very same man 
that beguiled master Slender of his chain cozened 
him of it. 

Sim. I would I could have spoken with the 

«■ IVise-womaii. Scott, in his Discovery of Witelicratt, 
says—" At this day it is indifTerent to say in the Enflisli 
tongue, She is a witch, or she is a wise-woman." 

Act IV.; 


[SvtliB VI. 

ViOiiuui herself : I had other things to have spokeu 
with her too, from hiin. 

Fal. Wiiat are they ? let us kuow. 

llosl. Ay, come ; quick. 

Sim. 1 may not conceal them, sir. 

Hott. Conceal theui, or thou diest. 

Sii.i. Why, sir, they were nothing but about 
mistress \im Psige ; to know if it were my nuis- 
ter's fortune to have her, or no. 

Fal. 'Tis, 'tis his fortune. 

Sim. "W hat, sir ? 

Fill. To have her, — or no: Go; say, the 
nomau told me so. 

Siiit. May 1 be bold to say so, sir? 

Fal. Ay, sir Tike ; who more bold ? 

Sim. 1 th;uik your worship : I shall make my 
master glad with these tidings. \_Eiil Sisiplk. 

Ilust. Thou art clerkly, thou art clerkly, sir 
John : Was there a wiae womiui with thee? 

Fal. Ay, that there was, mine host ; one that 
hath taught me more wit than ever I learned 
before in my life; and I paid nothing for it 
neither, but was paid for my learning. 

Enter B.viiDOLrn. 

Bard. Out, alas, sir ! cozenage 1 mecr co- 

Uost. Whire Ihj my horses ? speak well of 
them, varletto. 

Bard. Run away with the cozeners : for so 
soon as I came beyond Eton, they threw me off, 
from behind one of them, in a slough of mire; 
and set spurs and away, like three German 
devil- ' " i' 

II . ^ ^ 10 meet the duke, 

villain: do not say they be fted; Germans arc 
honest men. 

Enter Sir HuGU Evaxs. 

Eta. AVhcre is mine host ? 

Uost. What is the matter, sir ? 

Eca. Have a tare of your entcrtainnnuts : 
there is a fricud of mi'"- "■ ■■^ to town, tells me 
there is tluLC couzin _ , that has cozened 

all the hosts of Headings, of Maidenhead, of 
r ' ' N, of horses r- ' ncy. 1 tell you for 
;: ., look you: wise, and full of 

gibes and vlouting-stogs ; and 'tis not convenient 
you should be cozened : Fare you well. [/!>/.'. 

Enter Dr. Caius. 

Catus. Vcre is mine Uost cfc Jarterre ? 

Uott. Here, master doctor, in perplexity, and 
doubtful dilemma. 

CitiHS. I cannot tell vat is dat : But it is tcU-a 
me, dat you make grand preparation for a duke 
rff" Jarmany : bj my trot, derc is no duke dat de 

Comedies.— Vol. I. O 

court is know to come ; In;: \uu :ur good vill : 
adieu. {Exit. 

Host. Hue and cry, villain, go: — assist me, 
kuight ; I am undone : fly, run, hue and cry, 
viiiiiin ! I am undone ! 

[Exeunt Host and Baiu>ou>II. 

/'(//. I would all the world might be cozened; 
for I have been cozened and beaten too. If it 
should come to the ear of the court, how I have 
been transformed, and how my transformation 
hath been washed luid cudgelled, they would 
melt me out of my fut, drop by drop, and liquor 
fisherman's boots with me. I warrant, they 
would whip me with their fine wits, till 1 were 
as crest -fallen as a dried pear. I never pros- 
pered since I foreswore niyself at primero. Well, 
if my wind were but long enough to say my 
prayers, I would repent. — 

Enter Mistress Quickly. 

Now ! whence come you ? 

Quick. From the two parties, forsooth. 

Fal. The devil take one party, and his dam 
the other, and so they shall be both bestowed ! 
I have suffered more for their s<akcs, more, than 
the villainous inconstancy of man's disposition 
is able to bear. 

Quick. And have not they suffered? Yes, 
I warrant ; speciously one of them ; mistress 
Ford, good heart, is beaten black and blue, that 
you cannot sec a white spot about her. 

Fal. What tell'st thou me of black and blue ? 
I was beaten myself into all the colours of the 
rainbow ; and I was like to be apprehended for 
the witch of Brentford ; but that my adminiblc 
dexterity of wit, my counterfeiting the action 
of an old woman, deliver'd me, the knave con- 
stable had set me i' the stocks, i' the common 
stocks, for a witch. 

Qiiiclc. Sir, let me speak with you in your 
chamber: vou shall hear how t' • — i-o ; and, 
I warrant, to your content. Hci' ;'tr will 

say somewhat. Good hearts, wliat ado here is 
to 1 ' ' ■ Sure, one of you docs 

not it you are so crossed. 

Fal. Come up into my chamber. [Exeunt. 

SCENE VI. — Another room in the Garter Inn. 

Enter Fextox and Host. 

Host. Master Fenton, talk not to mc; my 
mind is heavy, I will give over all. 

Fent. Yet hear me speak : Assist mc in my 
And, as I am a gentleman, I'll give thee 
A hundred pounds in gold, more than your loss. 


Act IV.] 


[Scene V!. 

Host. I ^rill hear you, master Fenton ; and I 
will, at the least, keep your counsel. 

Fent. Prom time to time I have acquainted 
With the dear love I bear to fair Ann Pagej 
"VTlio, mutually, hath answered my affection 
(So far forth as herself might be her chooser,) 
Even to my wish : I have a letter from her 
Of such contents as you will wonder at ; 
The mirth whereof so larded with my matter, 
That neither, singly, can be manifested. 
Without the shew of both, — wherein fat Falstaff" 
Hath a great scene : the image of the jest 
I'll shew you here at large. Hark, good mine 

To-night at Heme's oak, just 'twixt twelve and 

Must my sweet Nan present the fairy queen : 
The purpose why, is here ; in which disguise, 
While other jests are something rank on foot. 
Her father hath commanded her to slip 
Away with Slender, and with him at Eton 
Immediately to many : she hatn consented : 
Now, sir, 

Her mother, even strong agamst that match. 
And firm for doctor Caius, hath appointed 
Tliat he shall likewise shuffle her away. 
While other sports are tasking of theii* minds. 
And at the deanery, where a priest attends, 

a This line in the folio is 

" Without the shew of both ; fut Falslaff." 
In the quarto, wherein, which apjjears necessary. 

Straight marry her : to this her mother's plot 

She, seemingly obedient, likewise hath 

Made promise to the doctor. — Now thus it 

rests : 
Her father means jhe shall be all in white; 
And in that habit, when Slender sees his time 
To take her by the hand, and bid her go. 
She shall go with him : her mother hath in- 
The better to denote her to the doctor, 
(For they must all be mask'd and vizarded,) 
That, quaint in green, she shall be loose enrob'd, 
With ribbands pendant, flaring 'bout her head ; 
And when the doctor spies his vantage ripe. 
To pinch her by the hand, and, on that token. 
The maid hath given consent to go with him.. 
Ilosf. Which means she to deceive ? father or 

mother ? 
Fe>it. Both, my good liost, to go along with me : 
Ajid here it rests, — that you'll procure the 

To stay for me at church, 'twxt twelve and 

And, in the lawful name of marrying, 
To give our hearts united ceremony. 

Host. Well, husband your device ; I 'U to the 

vicar : 
Bring you the maid, you shaU not lack a 

Fc7it. So shaU I ever more be bound to thee ; 
Besides, I'll make a present recompense. 


["Sometime a keeper here in WiiiJ.oi Tuiest."] 


' Scene IL — '• / fpy a great penrd under her 

The mufHer covered a portion of the face — 
sometimes the lower part, sometimes the upper, 
it was en.iote'l, s.iys Douce, by a Scottish stitute 
iu 1457, that "na woman cum to kirk, nor mercat, 
with her face tnutsaled, or covered that scho mav 

not be kond." Yet the ladies of Scotland, accord- 
ing to Warton, continued muzzled duriug three 
reigns. Douce gives us the f " ■" ■ '-.^s — the 

first and third from Josh. . . . i.mtrum 

lifiUicrum,— the second, from Speed's ilap of 
England, being the costume of a countrywonac 
in the time of Jamoc T. 

ScE-NE V.-"lI,s Mtarulin^ bed and (ruckle hedr I y^ j.^,. ^j^^ ^^^^..^^^ ^g^^ riustratiou to Romeo 
The etnuding bod was for the master, the tntckle I and Juliet. Act II ) 

f "1 






Eton was probably a village in the time of 
Henry lY. It is scarcely necessary to say that 
the present College was founded by Henry YI. 
The church where Anne Page was "immediately 
to marry '" with Slender, was probably the ancient 
parish church, which has long since fallen to 

In Scene III. Bardolph informs the Host that 
the Germans desire to have three of his horses ; 
the duke himself will be to-morrow at Court, and 
they are going to meet him. Mine Host, although 
he hears not in the Court of the Duke " who cornea 
Bo secretly," says the Germans shall have his 
horses. He is indeed in "perplexity and doubt- 
ful dilemma " when he is told of the " three 
couzin germans, that has cozened all the hosts of 
Reading, of Maidenhead, of Colebrook, of horses 
and money." In the extracts which we gave of 
the 'Bathing Journey' of the Duke of Wiirtem- 
berg, &c. we felt it necessary to confine ourselves 
to what especially related to Windsor. Mr. Halli- 
well, in his folio Shakespeare, Yol. 11. has given a 
translation of some portions, which we purposely 
omitted. We had said with reference to the 
hosts of Reading, of Maidenhead, of Colebrook, 
that Shakspere was probably familiar with, the 
road from London to Maidenhead in his journeys 
to Stratford through Oxford. In the original 
sketch the Germane Duke has " cozened all the 
hosts of Braiutford and Reading." This would 

imply such a knowledge of the course of the Duke 
of Wiirtemberg — in conjunction with the subse- 
quent passage in the folio — of the cozeniiig of the 
hosts of Reading, Maidenhead, and Colebrook, as 
would render it not improbable that Shakspere 
was acquainted with the curious volume which we 
first brought into notice. According to this narra- 
tive, Elizabeth, on being made officially acquainted 
with the arrival of his Highness in London, des- 
patched from the residence of the court at Read- 
ing, a page of honour to convey him thither, in a 
coach sent by the Queen. They travelled from 
London in this coach with post-horses. At noon 
they dined at Hounsloe ; towards night they 
reached Maidenhaide; and on the next morning 
arrived about noon at Reiding. We need not 
follow the narration of the interviews of the 
Queen and the Duke during two days. On the 
third day, the Queen having left Reading with her 
court; his Highness, in company with the French 
ambassador, travelled back towards London, and 
in the evening arrived at Windsor, which is de- 
scribed as twelve miles from Reading. Here he 
stayed two days, seeing the castle, as noticed in 
our Local Illustration to Act II. From this nar- 
rative we may judge that the cozenage of our 
Host of the Garter was practised upon him 
during the jjeriod when the Duke had travelled 
fi-om London to Reading, and back .ng'ur. to 



[Kerne't Oak— ' Sixty year* tince. 


SCENE I.— A Room in the Garter Iim. 
Entfr Falstafp and Mrs. QuiCKLY. 

Fill. Prithee, no more prattling : — go. I '11 
hold : This is the third time ; I hope, good luck 
lir^ ■ " ' - 'v. go; they =v '' - 

is -, cither in ; 

chance, or death. — Away. 

Qui.k. I'll ' aii.l I '11 do 

what I can to ^' _ , iis. 

Fal. Away, I say ; time wears : hold up your 
head, and mince. ' Ksil Mrs. QciCKLY. 

/ - i-<'KD. 

How iiow, uKislcr I>r'K)k ? Master Hrook, the 
matter will be known to-night, or never. lie 
you in the Park al)out midnight, at Heme's oak, 
and you si " 'its. 

ForJ. W to her yesterday, sir. as 

you told me yon had appointed ? 

Fal. I went to her, master Brook, a.s you see, 
like a poor old man : but I came fnjm her, 
master Brook, like a poor old woman. That 

same knave. Ford her husband, hath the finest 
mad devil of jealousy in him, master Brook, that 
ever governed frenzy. I will tell you : — He 
beat mc grievously, in the shape of a woman ; 
for in the shape of man, master Brook, I fear 
not Goliah with a weaver's beam ; because I 
know also, life is a shuttle. I am in haste ; go 
idong with me ; I '11 tell you all, master Brook. 
Since I pluck'd gccsc, play'd truant, and whipp'd 
top, I knew not what it was to be beaten, till 
lately. Follow nie : I '11 tell you strange things 
of this knave Ford : on whom to-night I will be 
r " ! I will deliver his wife into your 

1 .. i .. .V : Strange things in hand, master 

Brook ! follow. 


SCENE II.— Windsor Park. 

Enler Page, Shallow, and Slender. 

Paijf. Come, come ; we'll couch i' the castle- 
ditch, till we see the liglit of our fairies. — Ile- 
membcr, son Slender, roy daughter. 

Act V.J 


[ScENi; V. 

Slen. Ay, forsooth; I have spoke with her, 
and we liave a nay-word, how to know one an- 
other. I eometo her in white, and cry, mtim; she 
cries budget ; and by that we know one another. 

Shul. That's good too : but what needs either 
youi" mum, or lier budgcl ? the white will decipher 
lier well enough. — It hath struck ten o'clock. 

l*afje. The night is dark ; light and spirits 
will become it well. Heaven prosper our sport ! 
No man means evil but the devil, and we shall 
know hiiu by his horns. Let's away ; follow 
iiie. {JSxeunt. 

SCENE IW.—The Street in Windsor. 

Enter Mrs. Page, Mrs. Ford, and Dr. Caius. 

Mrs. Page. Master Doctor, my daugliter is 
in green : when you see your time, take her by 
the hand, away with her to the deanery, and 
despatch it quickly : Go before into tlic park ; 
we two must go together. 

Caius. I know vat I have to do ; Adieu. 

Mrs. Page. Fare you well, sir. \_Exit Caius. 
My husband will not rejoice so much at the 
abuse of Falstafl', as he will chafe at the doctor's 
marrying my daughter: but 'tis no matter; 
better a little chiding than a great deal of heart- 

Mrs. Ford. Where is Nan now, and her troop 
of fairies ? and the Welch devil, Hugh ? 

3Irs. Page. They arc all eouelied in a pit hard 
by Heme's oak, with obscni-ed lights ; which, 
at the very instant of Falstaff's and our meeting, 
they will at once display to the night. 

Mrs. Ford. That cannot choose but amaze lum. 

Mrs. Page. If he be not amazed, he will be 
mocked ; if lie be amazed, he will every way be 

Mrs. Ford. We'll betray him finely. 

Mrs. Page. Against such lewdstcrs, and their 
Those that betray them do no treachery, 

3Irs. Ford. The hour draws on. To the oak, 
to the oak ! [Exeunt. 

SCENE IV.— Windsor Park. 

Enter Sir HuGii Evans, and Fairies. 

Ecu. Trib, trib, fairies ; come ; and remember 

your parts : be pold, I pray you ; follow mc into 

the pit ; and when I give the wateh-'ords, do as 

I pid you; Come, come ; trib, trib. {Exeunt. 

SCENE Y .—Anot/ier part of the Park. 
Enter Falstaff, disguised with a buck's head on. 
Fat. The Windsor bell hath struck twelve; 
tlic minute ckaws on: Now, the hot-blooded 

gods assist me : — RememDcr, Jove, thou wast a 
bull for thy Europa ; love set on thy horns. O 
powerfid love ! that, in some respects, makes a 
beast a man ; in some other, a man a beast. 
You were also, Jupiter, a swan, for the love of 
Leda : — O, omnipotent love ! how near the god 
drew to the complexion of a goose ?^A fault 
done first in the form of a beast ; — Jove, a 
beastly fault ! and then another fault in the sem- 
blance of a fowl; think on't, Jove; a foul fault. 
T\ hen gods have hot backs, what shall poor men 
do ? For me, I am here a Windsor stag ; and 
tlie fattest, I think, i' the forest : Send me a cool 
rut- time, Jove, or who can blame me to piss my 
tallow ? Who comes here ? my doe ? 

Enter Mrs. Fokd and Mrs. Page. 

Mrs. Ford. Su* John ? art thou there, my 
deer ? my male deer ? 

Fat. Lly doe with the black scut ? — Let the 
sky rain potatoes ; let it thunder to the tune of 
Green sleeves; hail kissing-comfits, and snow 
eringoes ; " let there come a tempest of provoca- 
tion, I wUl shelter me here. [Embracing her. 

Mrs. Ford. Mistress Page is come with me, 

Fal. Divide me like a bribe-buck, each a 
haunch: I will keep my sides to myself, my 
shoulders for the fellow of this walk, and my 
horns I bequeath your husbands. Am I a wood- 
man ? "^ ha ! Speak I like Heme the Inmter ? 
— Why, now is Cupid a child of conscience ; he 
makes restitution. As I am a true spirit, wel- 
come ! [Noise within. 

Mrs. Page. Alas ! what noise ! 

Mrs. Ford. Heaven forgive our sins ! 

Fal. What should this "be? 

Mrs. Ford.^ . -rp, a- 

Away, away. [J-heg run off. 

Mrs. Page. 

Fal. I think the devil will not have me 
damned, lest the oil that is in me should set hell 
on fire ; he would never else cross me thus. 

Enter Sir HuGU Evans like a satyr ; Mrs. 
QuiCKXY, and Pistol ; Anne Page, as the 
Fairg Queen, attended by her brother and 
others, dressed like fairies, tvith waxen tapers 
on their heads. 

Quick. Fairies, black, grey, green, and white. 
You moon-shine revellers, and shades of night, 

» Holinshed tells us that in 1583 was performed " a very 
.stately tragedy named Dido, wherein the queen's banquet 
(witli iEneas' narration of tlie destruction of Troy,) was 
lively described in a marchiminc pattern,— Wxq tempest 
wherein it hailed small confects, rained rose-water, and 
snew an artificial kind of snow." 

b Do 1 understand woodman't craft — the hunter's art. 

Act V J 



You orphan-heirs of tixcd destiny, 
Attcud your oUice aud your (|Uidity. 
Crier Hobgoblin, make the fiiiry oyes.' 

Pisl. Elves, list your uaiues ; silence, you airy 
Cricket, to Windsor chimnics shalt thou leap : 
Where fires thou find'st unnik'd, aud hearths 

There pinch the maids as blue as bilberry : 
Our radiant queen hates sluts and sluttery. 

ful. They are f;iiries; he that speaks to them 
bhall die : 
I '11 wink and couch : no man their works must 
eye. [Z/'S Joicn iijw/t his j'ucf. 

Ecu. Where's Pede ? — Go you, and where 
you lind a maid, 
That, ere she sleep, has thrice her prayers said, 
liaise up the orgjins of her fimtasy.'' 
Sleep she as sound as careless infancy ; 
But those as sleep and think not on their sins. 
Pinch them, arms, legs, backs, shoulders, sides, 
and shins. 

Aume. About, about ; 
Search Wiiul^or-castle, elves, within and out : 
Strew good luck, ouphes, on every sacred room ; 
That it may stand till the perpetual doom. 
In state as wholesome, :is in state 'tis fit ; 
W' ■' •' • owner, and the owner it. 
Tl. .1 chairs of order look you scour 

With juice of balm, and every precious flower : 
Each fair iik^talnient, coat, and !-e\cral crest. 
With loyal bla/ou, evermore be blest ! 
And nightly, meadow-fairies, look, you sing, 
Like to the Garter's compass, in a ring : 
The ex- - ■ ■ • that it bears, green let it be, 
More i". A\ than all the field to see; 

And, Hony noit qui mat y pense," write. 
In . ' ' ' '' " wers purple, blue, and white : 

LiK ^, ,^ 1, and rich embroidery, 
Buckled below fair knight-ho(xl's bending knee : 
F.iiries flowers for their clnnictcry. 
Away ; disperse ■. But, till 'lis one o'clock. 
Our dance of custom, round a1>out the oak 
Of Heme the Hunter, let us not forgt-t. 

Era. I'ray you, look hand in hand ; yourselvo"? 
in order set : 
And twenty glcw-womis shall our lantcrtis be, 
To guide our in i i . .i •^•f.^,^ 

But, stay : I si; ill. 

Ful. Heavens defend me from that Welch fairy ! 
Lest he transform me to a piece of cheese ! 

» Th.' 

f ^.- rt. * ■ 



of the crier of a proclamalion, wu 
rlijrmiDK to lofi. 

•re knew 

riit, Vild worm, tiiou v^.i-. . kcrlook'd even 
in thy birth. 

Amho. With trial-fire touch mc his finger-end. 
If he i)c chaste, the flame will baek ilrsci nd 
And turn him to no pani ; but if he start. 
It is the flesh of a corrupted heart. 

Pisl. A trial, come. 

Em. Come, will this woo<l take fire ? 

[Thi'y hum him irllh their tupen. 

Ful. Oh, oh, oh ! 

Ainie. Corrupt, conujii, aim i.uuted in desire! 
Al)out him, fairies ; sing a scornful .hyme ; 
And, as you trip, still pineh him to your time.' 


Fyc on sinful!iy I 

Fye on lust niid lu\ur> ! 

Lust U but .n bloudy tiro, 

Kindled with unchaste desire, 

Fed in hrnrt ; whoso fl.imes mpin-, 

As thou);ht« do blu\T them, hiijher und higher. 

Finch him, fairies, iiiiitiuilly ; 

Finch hiin for hi^ vilbitiv; 
I'ineh him, nml burn 1 
Till candles, and »or : it 

During this song, the fairies pinch Falstafl'. 
1 Joe tor Caius cornea one way, and steals ateay 
a fiiirif ill grcn ; Slender ' / 

tukci off a fiiiry in white ; l ^ . ', 

and steals away Mrs. Anno Page. A noise of 
hunting i.i niade icithin. All the fairies run 
away. Fidstaff pulls off his buck's head, and 

Enter Paoe, Fuud, Mrs. Page, and Mrs. Foito. 
They lay hold on him. 
Page. Nay, do not fly ; I think, we hat p 
wateh'd you now : 
Will none but Ilernc the hunter senc your turn ? 
Mrs. Page. I pray you, come; hold up the 
jest no higher: 
Now. cood sir .T<'lin. liow like you Windsor 

wives ? 
t>ce you these, husb.unl !' do not; lair yokc9 
Become the forest Utter than tlie town? 

Ford. Now, sir, who's a cuckold now ? — Master 
Brook, FabtalTs a knave, a cuckoldly knave ; 

» Th«wi»xi!t! h"r^ In*'rl4 « «ix^rh frnm thf i^nmrin- «• It 

,, ■■ T ... 

I r 

II :e 
I ll 

I " 

t:, . ..O 

oriijiual i* ie'.atiuU. I'ui cjkaiii}>>e, lu ll.c i4U.>i;ii, Sir llugh 



' brokers »leo|). 

. -I'.l . \: .•}. r til ir Tii.iff , 




Act v.] 


fScENL ','. 

here are his homs, master Brook : And, master 
Brook, he liath ciijoyed nothing of Ford's but his 
buck-basket, liis cudgel, and twenty pounds of 
money, which must be paid to master Brook ; his 
horses are arrested for it, master Brook. 

Mis. Ford. Sir John, we have liad ill luck; we 
could never meet. I will never take you for my 
love again, but T will always count you my deer. 

Fa I. 1 do begin to perceive that I am made 
;in ass. 

Ford. Ay, and an ox too ; both the proofs are 

Fal. And these are not fairies ? I was three 
or four times in the thought they were not 
fairies : and yet the guiltiness of my mind, the 
sudden surprize of my povTcrs, drove Ihe gross- 
ness of the foppery into a received belief, in 
despite of the teeth of all rhyme and reason, 
that they were fairies. See now, how wit may 
be made a Jack-a-lent, when 't is upon ill em- 

Eva. Sir John Falstaff, serve Got, and leave 
your desires, and fairies will not pinse you. 

Ford. Well said, fairy Hugh. 

Foa. And leave you your jealousies loo, I 
pray you. 

Ford. I will never mistrust my wife again, till 
thou art able to woo her in good English. 

Fal. Have I laid my brain in the sun, and 
dried it, that it wants matter to prevent so gross 
o'er-reaching as this ? Am I ridden with a 
Welch goat too ? Shall I have a coxcomb of 
frize ? 'Tis time I were choked wilh a piece of 
toasted cheese. 

Eoa. Seese is not good to give putter ; your 
pelly is all putter. 

Fal. Sccse and putter! have 1 lived to stand at 
the taunts of one that makes fritters of English ? 
This is enough to be the decay of lust and late- 
walking through the realm. 

j\Irs. Par/e. Why, sir John, do you think, 
though we would have thrust virtue out of our 
hearts by tlic head and shoidders, and have 
given ourselves without scruple to hell, that ever 
the devil could have made you our delight ? 

Ford. What, a hodge-pudding ? a bag of flax ? 

Mrs. Faf/c. A puffed man ? 

Par/e. Old, cold, withered, and of intolerable 
entrails ? 

Ford. And one that is as slanderous as Satan ? 

Paffe. And as poor as Job ? 

Ford. And as wicked as his wife ? 

Eca. And given to fornications, and to tavenis, 
and sack, and wine, and methcglins, and to drink- 
ings, and swearings, and starings, pribbles and 
prabbles ? 


Fal. Well, I am your theme : you have the 
start of me ; I am dejected ; I am not able to 
answer the Welch flannel : ignorance itself is a 
plummet o'er me ; use me as you will. 

l/'ord. Marry, sir, we '11 bring you to Windsor, 
to one master Brook, that you have cozened of 
money, to whom you should have been a pander : 
over and above that you have suffered, I think, 
to repay that money will be a biting affliction. "■ 

Page. Yet be cheerful, knight : thou shalt eat 
a posset to-night at my house ; where I will desire 
thee to laugh at my wife that now laughs at 
thee : Tell her master Slender hatli married her 

Mrs. Page. Doctors doubt that ; if Anne Page 
be my daughter, she is, by this, doctor Caius' 
wife. {Aside. 

Enter Slender. 

Slen. Whoo, ho ! ho ! father Page ! 

Page. Son ! how now ? how now, son ? have 
you despatched ? 

Slen. Despatched ! — I '11 make the best in Glo- 
cestershire know on 't ; would I were hanged, la, 

Page. Of what, son? 

Slen. I came yonder at Eton to marry mistress 
Anne Page, and she's a great lubberly boy. If 
it had not been i' the church, I would have 
swinged him, or he should, have swinged me. 
If 1 did not think it had been Anne Page 
would I might never stir, and 't is a post-master's 

Page. Upon my life then you took the M'rong. 

Slen. What need you tell me that ? I tliink 
so, when I took a boy for a girl : If I had been 
married to him, for all he was in woman's apparel, 
I would not have had him. 

Page. Why, this is your own folly. Did not 
I tell you how you should, know my daughter by 
her garments ? 

Slen. I went to her in white,'' and cry'd 
mum^ and she cry'd. budget, as Anne and I had 
appointed ; and yet it was not Anne, but a post- 
master's boy.' 

Mrs. Page. Good George, be not angry : I 
knew of your purpose; turned, my daughter into 
green ; and, indeed, she is now with the doctor 
at the deanei-y, and there married. 

•1 The whole scene being changed, three lines are liere 
often foisted in from the quarto : 

" Mrs. Ford. Nay, husband, let tliat go to make amends : 
Forgive that sum, and so we'll all be friends. 

Ford. Well, here's my hand; all's forgiven at last." 

b The folio has green, which Pope changed to white, also 
changing, in the next speech, wkiie io green. 

c Two other lines are here introduced in the same way : 

"Eva. Jeshu! Master Slender, cannot you see but marry 
poys ? 

P-jge. O, I am vexed at heart : What shall I do T' 



(Sieve V. 

Enter Cajus. 

Cu'kix. Vcrc is mistress Page ? By gar, I am 
cozened; I ha' married un (/argon, a boy; iin 
paisan^ by gar, a boy ; it is not Anne Page : by 
gar, I am cozened. 

Mrs. l\ije. ^VIly, diil you Uikc her iu green? 

Caius. Ay, be gar, and 'tis a boy ; bo gar, I '11 
raise all )Vindsor. [ZT-nV Caii's. 

■Ford. This is strange : AVho liatli got the right 
Anne ? 

Piiije. ^[y heart misgives me : Here comes 
master lYnton. 

Enter Fexton and Anne Page. 

How now, master Fenton ? 

Anne. Pardon, good father ! good, my mother, 
pardon ! 

Page. Now, mistress ? how chance you went 
not with master Slender? 

Mrs. Page. Why went you not with niiistcr 
doctor, maid ? 

Fent. You do am:izc her: Hear the truth 
of it. 
You would have married her most shamefully, 
^Mierc there was no proportion held in love. 
The truth is, she and I, long since contracted, 
;Vre yow so sure that nothing can dissolve us. 
The offence is holy that she hath committed : 
And this deceit loses the name of craft, 

Of disobedience, or uniluteous title ; 
Since therein she doth evitate and shun 
A thousand irreligious cursed hours, 
Which forced marriage would have brought upon 
Ford. Stand not amaz'd : here is no remedy : 
In love, the heavens themselves do guide the 

Money buys lands, and wives are sold by fate. 

Fal. I am glad, though you have (a'en a spe- 
cial stand to strike at me, that your arrow hath 

Pa[fe. Well, what remedy? Fenton, heaven 
give thee joy ! 
What cannot be csehew'd must be embrac'd. 
Fal. When night-dogs run all sorts of deer arc 

.1//-.V. Piigr. 'Well, I will muse no furllier 
master Fenton, 
Heaven give you many, many merry days! 
Good husband, let us every one go home, 
And laugh this sport o'er by a country lire ; 
Sir John and all. 

Ford. Let it be so : — Sir John, 
To master Brook you yet shall hold your word ; 
For he, to-night, shall lie with mistress Ford. 


» We have nl-o another line restorcJ— rescued, a» the 
editors «ay — good in iltvlf, but out of place : 

" Era I will dance and eat plunii at your weddin;;." 


(i ■.. ,. -1 i'r^eited to us hy Dr. .Mnfiinn, for our 'Library 
£■: I these p<.elic»l sjiccilics brlonf? to Anne, as 

III.' ! KW. In all previous modern editions they are 

all vrry iim^prnpriately given tu Quickly. Wc have traced 
the origin of this mittake, which is perfectly evident. In 
the oriKinal quarto we have not a woid of the arrangement 
for Jnne to " prcs -nt the Fairy Queen." These lines are 

on'- •■ ■•• '■'■■• — 

oak, Ju«t 'twixt twelve and one, 
I present the f.iiry queen." 
Uut 111 I lie i|tiaflu edition. III the ktagc-direetlon of this 
seen'-, »p h,iv ■' Knirr Sir Hu'.'h like a talyr, and boys 
dr. - V i was 

ft, :ioii 

14 : i'«Ke, 


ihi . tihe 

fairy queen," these specchts uoquestionably belonx to 
her, and we have made the change accordingly. Mr. Dyce 
and Mr. Slauntun adopt the change; Mr. While, In his 
edition of the I'lays, contends that Quickly is rixht, but ho 
says it has la-en the "invariab.e cuBtuni since .Mslimc's 
time," to substitute " .Inne /'nr/eri* the Fairy Queen " when 
the charactrrs enter, while tiio speeches were given to 
Quickly. "Tlie liiconiist'-nry wa-i avi.lilrd by -Mr. Collier 
at the suggestion of Mr. HnriieiiS." lie goes on to say that 
Qui. and Uuie. could not have l>cen invariably misprinted 
for Qu. : that the speeches of Piilnl and .Sir l{ugh are as 
much tiiconiiflenl with the charactrrs n« those of J/r<. 
O ■ • ■■•••- ■ : - ■ -■- :■■ ' ■- - 


her father and mother, " and shf did ao." 



,:i-ls^ - 

-,■'.'-.'■ ■-'' 







(.Oak, and Avenue of Kims, WinciBor Home Park.] 


The question whether the Heme's Oak of Shak- 
spere is at present existing,', or whether it was cut 
down some sixty years before, liad become, at the 
time of the publication of our first edition, a sub- 
ject of much controversy. Mr. Jesse, the author 
of those very agreeable volumes, ' Gleanings in 
Natural History,' maintained that the identical 
tree was still standing. I'he Quarterly Review, on 
the contraiy, asserted that the tree had been cut 
down. At Windsor there were many believers in 
the present Heme's Oak. and many non-believers. 
We have bestowed some care in the investigation 
of the question ; and we shall endeavour to present 
to our readers the result of our inquiries in con- 
ne.\iou with our own early recollections.* 

The memory of the editor carries him back to 
Windsor as it was forty years ago. The castle was 
then almost uninhabited. The king and his family 
lived in an ugly barrack-looking building called 
the Queen's Lodge, which stood opposite the south 
front of the ca^-'tle. The gi-eat quadrangle, the 

terrace, and every part of the Home Park, was a 
free playground for the boys of Windsor. The 
path to Datchct passed immediately under the 
south terrace, direct from west to east, and it 
abruptly descended into the Lower Park, at a place 
called Dodd's Hill. From this path several paths 
diverged in a south-easterly direction towards the 
dairy at Frogmore ; and one of these went close 
by a little dell, in which long rank grass, and fern, 
and low thorns grew in profusion. Near this 
dell stood several venerable oaks. Our earliest 
recollections associate this place with birds'-uests 
and mushrooms ; but some five or six years later 
we came to look here for the "oak with great 
ragg'd horns," to which we had been introduced 
in the newly discovered world of Shakspere. 
There was an oak, whose upper branches were 
much decayed, standing some thirty or forty yards 
from the deep side of the dell ; and there was 
another oak with fewer branches, whose top was 

* We liad better keep the dates as they stand in this 
Illustration, as published in 1839, in the first edition of the 
' Pictorial Shakspere.' 


also bare, standing in the lino of the avenue near 
the }iark wall. \\'c have heard each of these oaks 
called Heme's Oak ; but the ajiplication of the 
name to the oak in the avenue is certainly more 
recent. That tree, as we fii-st recollect it, had not 
its trunk bare. Its dimensions were comparatively 
small, and it seeme<l to us to have no pretensions 
to the honour which it occasionally received. The 
old people, however, used to say tliat Heme's Oak 
was cut down or blown down, and cert^iiuly our 
own impressions were that Heme's Oak was gone. 
One thing however consoled us. The little dell 
was assuredly the " pit hard by Heme's Oak" in 
which Anne Page ami her troop of fairies " coached 
with obscured lights." And so we for ever 
associated this dell with Shakspere. 

Years passed on — Windsor ceased to be familiar 
to us. When Mr. Je.<se, however, published his 
second series of Gleanings in 1834, we were pleased 
to find this p;issage : " The most interesting tree, 
at "Windsor, for there can be little doubt of its 
identity, is the celebrated Heme's Oak. There is 
indeed a etoi-y prevalent in the neighbourhood 
respecting its destruction. It was stated to have 
been felled by command of his late Majesty George 
HI. about fifty years ago, under peculiar circum- 
stances. The whole story, the details of which 
it is unneces.sjiry to enter upon, appeared so im- 
j.robable, that 1 have taken some pains to ascertain 
the inaccuracy of it, and have now every reason 
to believe that it js perfectly unfounded." But 
we were not quite satisfied with Mr. Jesse's 
description of this oak. In his 'Gleanings' he 
says, " In following the footpath which leads from 
th«? Windsor-road to Queen Adelaide's Lodge, in 
the Little Park, about half way on the right, a 
dead tree may I c seen close to an avenue of elms. 
This is what is pointed out as Heme's Oak." Kow 
we distinctly recollected that one of the trees, 
which some persons said was Heme's Oak, was not 
only close to an avenue of elms but formed part 
of the avenue ; the other oak which pretended to 
the name was some distance from the avenue. 
Mr. Jesse goes on to say : — 

" The footpath which leads across the park is 
stated to have passed, in former times, close to 
Heme's Oak. The path is now at a little distance 
from it. and was, probably, altered, in order to 
protect the tree from injury." 

Here again was the manifestation of some im- 
perfect local knowledge, which led us to doubt Mr. 
Jesse's strong assertion of the tree's identity. The 
footpath, Fo fur from being altered to protect the 
tree from injury, was actiudly made, for the first 
time, some fivu and-twcnty years ago, when the 
ancient f'j<iti)ath to L>atchet, which crossed the 
upper part of the park, passing, aa we have men- 
tioned, under the south terrace, was diverted by 
order of the magiutrates, in order to give a greater 
privacy to the castle. The present pathw.ny to 
Datchct was then first ma<le, and a causeway was 
carried acro.'^s the little dell. One of the jiaths 
from the castle to the dairy went near this dell, 
but it was on the more northern side, and not far 
from the other tree which some persons called 
Heme's Oak. Indeed, we were by no means sure 
that Mr. Jesse's description did not apply to this 
other tree. The exprtsaion " close to the avenue" 
might include it. Certainly his engraving waa 

much more like that tree, as wc recollect it, th;ui 
the tree in the avenue. 

Towards the end of 1838, the following passage 
in 'The Quarterly lieview,' came to destroy the 
little hope which wo had indulged that Mr. Jesse 
had restorcil to us Heme's Oak : — 

" Among his anecdotes of eelebr.ited English 
oaks, we were surprised to find Mr. Loudon adopt- 
ing (at le:ist so we understand him) an ai)ocryph:il 
story about Heme's Oak, given in the lively pages 
of Mr. Jesse's GUanimjs. That gentleman, if he 
had taken any trouble, might have aacertuined 
that the tree in question was cut down one morn- 
ing, by oi-der of King George III., when in astito 
of gi-eat, but transient, excitement ; the circum- 
fataucc caused much regret and astonishment at 
the time.' 

Mr. Jesse replied to this statement, in a letter 
addressed to the editor of the ' Times,' dated Nov. 
28, 1838. Mr. Jesse says that the story thus given 
was often repeated by George IV., who, however, 
always added 'that tree was supposed to have 
been Heme's Oak, but it was not.' Mr. Jesse adds, 
that the tree thus cut ilown, which stood near the 
castle, was an elm. Wo may take the liberty of 
mentioning that George I'V. diil not ahcaya "add 
that the tree cut down was not Heme's Oak ; and 
this we know from the very best authority — tiie 
King's own statement to Mr. Croker. wli<i furnished 
the information to us. Wo have a letter in which 
that gentleman says that the cutting down of 
Heme's Oak was mentioned by George IV., as 
one of the results of his father's mental indis- 
position. Mr. Jesse goes on to say, that soon 
after the circumstance referred to, three largo 
old oak trees were blown down in a gale of wind 
in the Little Park ; and one of them, supposed to 
be Heme's Oak, was cut up and made into boxes 
and other Shak.sperian relics. Mr. Jesse, however, 
conceives that tlie matter is put beyond doubt by 
the following statement : — 

" To set the matter at rest, however, I will now 
I'epeat the substance of some information given to 
me relative to Heme's Oak, by Mr. Ing-alt, the 
present respectable baililTand nuinager of Windsor 
Home Park. He states that he was appointed to 
that situation bj' George III., about forty years 
ago. On receiving his appointment he was di- 
rected to attend upon the King at the Castle, and 
on arriviuLC there he found His M.-ijesty with ' the 
old Lord Wiuchilsea.' After a little delay, the 
King set oflf to walk in the park, attended by 
Lord Winchilsea, and Mr Ingalt was desired to 
follow them. Nothing was sjii'l to him mitil the 
King stopped ojipositean oak tree. He then turned 
to ilr. Ingiilt and caid, ' I brought you here to 
point out this tree to you. I commit it to your 
especial charge, and take care that no damage is 
ever done to it. I had rather that everj' tree in 
the park should be cut down than that this treo 
should bo hurt. This is I/cnu's Oak.' Mr. In- 
galt added, that this was the tree still standing 
near Queen I'.lizabeth's Walk, and is the same tree 
which I have mentioned anil given a sketch of in 
my Glcaiiiiiij'ti {n Aalurul Ilintorij. Sapless and 
leafless it certainly is, and its rugged bark has all 

' Iti boughs arc mO'<i'd with age, 
' And high top baJd with gray antiquity ; ' — 



hut there it stanils, and long may it do so, an ob- 
ject of interest to every admirer of our immortal 
bard. In this state it has been, probably, long 
before the recollection of tlic oldest person living. 
Its trunk appears, however, sound, like a piece of 
ship-timber, and it ha.s always been protected by 
a strong fence round it — a proof of the care which 
has been taken of the tree, and of the interest 
which is attached to it." 

Mr. Engall (not Ingalt), "the present I'cspectable 
bailiff and manager of Windsor Home Park," cer- 
tainly did not reside at Windsor forty yeai-s ago. 
He is not now what may be called an old man ; 
and he was originally about the person of George 
III. at one of those seasons of affliction which 
were so distressing to his Majesty's family, and to 
his subjects. The conversation th\is reported by 
Mr. Jesse, is entirely at variance with much earlier 
recollections of George III., which we shall pre- 
.?ently shew. 

We are here relieved from the doubt as to which 
tree Mi-. Jesse originally intended to describe as 
Heme's Oak, by the following passage of his letter 
to the 'Times.' "King William III. was a great 
planter of avenues, and to him we are indebted 
for those in Hampton Court and Bushy Park, and 
also those at Windsor. All these have been made 
iu a straiglit line, with the exception of one in the 
Home Pai-k, which diverges a little, so as to take 
ill Heme's Oalc as a part of the avenue— s. proof, at 
least, that Wiliam III. preferred distorting his 
avenue to cutting down the tree in order to make 
way for it in a direct line, affording another in- 
stance of the care taken of this tree 150 years ago." ' 

With our own recollections of the localities still 
vivid, we have recently visited the favourite haunts 
of our boyhood in the Little Park. Our sensations 
were not pleasurable. The spot is so changed, 
that we could scarcely recognise it. We lamented 
twenty-five years ago that the common footpath to 
Datchet should have been carried through the 
picturesque dell, near which all tradition agreed 
that Heme's Oak stood ; but we were not prepared 
to hnd that, during the alterations of the castle, 
the moat extensive and deepest part of the dell, 
all on the north of the path, had been filled up 
and made perfectly level. Our old favoui-ite thorns 
are now all buried, and the antique roots of the 
old trees that stood in and about the dell are 
covered up. Surely the rubbish of the castle 
might have been conveyed to a less interesting 
place of deposit. The smaller and shallower part 
of the dell, that on the south of the path, has been 
half filled up, and what remains is of a formal and 
artificial character. Mi\ Jesse seems quite unaware 
of the change that has taken place in the locality, 
for in his Gleaniru/s he says : " I was glad to find 
a pit hard by, where Nan and her troop of fairie.'?, 
and the Welsh Devil Evans, might all have couch'd, 
without being perceived by the 'fat Windsor stag' 
when he spake like Heme the hunter. The pit 
above alluded to has recently had a few thorns plant- 
ed in it ; and the circum.stance of its being near 
the oak, with the diversion of the footpath, seem 
to prove the identity of the tree, in addition to the 
traditions respecting it." The divergence of the 
avenue which Mr. Jesse, somewhat enthusiastically, 
attributes to the respect of William III. forHerne's 
Oak, must, we fear, be assigned to less poetical 

motives. The avenue, we understand, formed the 
original boundary of the Park in that direction. 
It diverges at least 120 yards before it reaches Mr. 
Jesse's Heme's Oak ; and there is little doubt that 
the meadow on the south of the avenue after it 
diverges, which in our remembrance was a seriarate 
enclosure, was formerly a common field. The en- 
graving at the head of this Illustration is a most 
faithful delineation of the oak which Mr. Jesse 
calls Heme's. It is now perfectly bare down to 
the very roots. " In this state," says Mr. Jesse, 
" it has been, probably, long before the recollection 
of the oldest person living." He adds, "it has 
always been protected by a strong fence round it." 
In our own recollection this tree was unprotected 
by any fence, and its upper part only was withered 
and without bark. So far from Heme the hunter 
having blasted it, it appears to have suffered a 
premature decay, and it fell down in 1863. This 
tree was of small girth compared with other trees 
about it. It was not more than fifteen feet in 
circumference at the lai-gest part, while there is a 
magnificent oak at about 200 yai-ds' distance whose 
girth is nearly thirty feet. The engraving at the 
end of this notice is a i'ei")resentation of that 
beautiful tree. 

The subject, after the publication of our first 
edition, was investigated with great acuteness by 
Dr. Bromet, and his conclusions are given in a 
very interesting letter iu the ' Gentleman's Maga- 
zine,' for April, 1841. He collected a variety of 
testimony from various persons, which went to 
prove that a tree called Heme's Oak was cut down 
some sixty years before, and that the tree which 
now pretends to the honour — " this oak " — had 
acquired the name iu very modern times : — " Its 
present name was not conferred upon it until some 
time after the demolition of another old tree, 
formerly possessing that title." This entirely 
agrees with our own personal recollections of 
the talk of Windsor about Heme's Oak. But 
Dr. Bromet justly observes that the "strongest 
proof" against the claims of Mr. Jesse's oak, is 
"Collier's map of 1742," which actually points 
out 'Sir John Falstaff's oak' as being, not in 
the present avenue, but outside it, near the edge of 
the pit. 

The engraving of an o:ik at the head of Act V. is 
copied without alteration from a drawing made in 
tlie year 1800, by Mr. W. Delamotte, the Professor 
of Landscape Drawing at Sandhurst, who was a 
]iupil of Benjamin West, under whose care he was 
placed in 1792. Mr. Delamotte has often heard his 
master lament that Heme's Oak had been cut down, 
to the great annoyance, as Mr. West stated, of the 
King and the royal family. According to Mr. West's 
account of the circumstance, the King had directed 
all the trees in the park to bo numbered ; and upon 
the representation of the bailiff, whose name was 
Kobinson, that certain trees encumbered theground, 
directions were given to fell those trees, and Heme's 
Oak was amongst tlie condemned. Mr. West, who 
was residing at Windsor at the time, traced this oak 
to the spot where it was conveyed, and obtained a 
large piece of one of its knotty arm.'J, which Mr. 
Delamotte lias often seen. Mr. Ralph West, how- 
ever, the eldest son of the Piesident, wlio, as a 
youth, was distinguished for his love of art, and 
his great skill as a draftsman, made a drawing 


of this tree before it was felled, and Mr. Delamotte's 
di-awiii^, which he h;is kindly granted us permission 
to engnive, waa a copy of this valuable sketch. 
The locality of the tree, as indicated by the position 
of the castle in this sketch, perfectly corresponds 
with the beBt traditions. 

We might here dismis^s the subject, had we not 
been favoured with a comnuiiiicatiuu, in accordance 
with the views which we hnve ali-eady taken. Mr. 
K icholsou.theeminent landscapedraft.-;miUi,ha.sfur- 
liished Mr. Ci-ofton Croker, who has taken a kind in- 
terest in cur work, with the following information: — 

About the year ISOO, he was on a visit to the 
Dowager Cmintess of Kingiston, at Old Windsor ; 
and his mornings wei-e chiefly employed in .sketch- 
ing, or rather making studies of the old trees in 
the Forest. This circumstance one day led the 
conversation of some visitors to Lady Kingston to 
Heme's Oak. Mrs. Bonfoy and her daughter, 
Lady Ely, were present ; and as they were very 
much with the royal family, Mr. Nicholson re- 
quested Lady Ely to procure for him any infor- 
mation that she could from the King, respecting 
Heme's Oak, wliich, considering Viis Majesty's ten-i- 
cious memory and familiarity with Windsor, the 
King could probably give better than any one else. 

In a very few days, Lady Ely informed Mr. 
Nicholson that she had made the inquiry he wished 
of the King, who told her that "when he (George 
III.) was a youijg man, it was represented to him 
that there were a numl)er of old oaks in t"he park 
v.hich La-l become unsightly objects, and that it 
would be desirable to t;ike them down ; he gave 
immediate directions that such trees as were of this 
description should be removed ; but he was after- 
wards sorry that he had given such an order inad- 
vertently, because he found that, among the rest, 
Ihe remains "i Heme's Oak ha..l been destroyed. 
There is a tbinl version of the popular belief 

regarding the removal of Heme's Oak, which dif- 
fers from the precoling sfcttements, and yet is 
BuflSciently circumstantial. The best information 
we have gathered on the subject is derived from 
a letter obligingly communicated to us, written by 
the son of Mr. John Piper, of Cambridge, formerly 
a gunniaker at Windsor, and of which the follow- 
ing are extract.s. It will \>c remarked how closely 
this statement of Mr. Piper agrees with the in- 
formation derived from Collier's plan : — 

'■ My father states that about sixty-four years 
since, there was a deep chalk-pit sunk in.^ide tiie 
park at Windsor, nearly opposite the Hope Inn 
(which is now nearly fdled up again, and through 
which the road to Datchet now runs). The chalk 
Was taken in qiumtities from this pit to 
fill up the ditch which then ran round the castle, 
it being considered it would render the foundations 
of the castle and connected buildiugs more secure, 
as in many places they were giving way. The re- 
moval of the chalk from the pit for this purpose, in 
some measure undermined a fine oak tree, which 
stood on the upper side of the pit, nearest the 
castle. Shortly after a storm came and blew this 
tree down, and this circumstance created a great 
sensation at the time, as that tree was considered 
to be the identicd Heme's Oak of Shakspere 
notoriety. My father had in his boyish days very 
frequently played in the pit and round the tree, 
and its locality is therefore strongly impressed on 
his memory, although now between sixty and 
seventy years since." The letter then concludes 
thus : — " My father wishes me to a<ld that it must 
not be inferred that there was no pit exi.sting pre- 
vious to the removal of the chalk for the purpose 
stated." There was before then such a pit as de- 
scribed in Act V. Scene III. where Mr*". Page says, 

" They are all couchcj in a pit close to HerneS o:.V." 

[Oak, near the 8i;e of Heme'sOak.] 


IWmrisor, 1839.] 


Rightly to appreciate thi.s Comedy, it is, we conceive, absolutely necessary to dissociate it from 
the Historical plays of Heniy IV., and Henry V. Whether Shakspere produced the original sketch 
of the Merry Wives of Windsor before those plays, and remodelled it after their a2)pearance, — or 
whether he produced both the original sketch, and the finished ijerformance, when his audiences 
wei-e perfectly familiar with the FalstafF, Shallow, Pistol, Nym, Bardolph, and Mistress Quickly of 
Henry IV., and Henry V., — it is perfectly certain that Ite did not intend the Merry Wives as a 
continuation. It is impossible, howevei", not to associate the period of the comedy with the period 
of the histories. For although the characters which are common to all the dramas act in the 
comedy under very different circumstances, and are, to our minds, not only different in their moods 
but in some of their distinctive features, they must each be received as identical — alter et idem. 
Still the connexion must be as far as possible removed from our view, that we may avoid comparisons 
which the author certainly was desirous to avoid, when in remodelling the comedy he introduced no 
circumstances which could connect it with the histories ; and when he not only did not reject what 
would be called the anachronisms of the sketch, but in the jicrfect ])\a,y heaped on such 
anachronisms with a profuseness that is not exhibited in any other of his dramas. We must, 
therefore, not only dissociate the characters of the Merry Wives from the similar characters of the 
histories ; but suffer our minds to slide into the belief that the manners of the times of Henry IV. 
had sufficient points in common with of the times of Elizabeth, to justify the poet in taking no 
great pains to distinguish between them. We must suffer ourselves to be carried away with the 
nature and fun of this comedy, without encumbering our minds with any precise idea of the social 
circumstances under which the characters lived. We must not startle, therefore, at the mention of 
Star-chambers, and Edward shovel-boards, and Sackerson, and Guiana, and rapiers, and Flemish 
drunkards, and coaches, and pensioners. The characters speak in the language of truth and nature, 
which belongs to all time; and we must forget that they sometimes use the expressions of a 
particular time to which they do not in strict i^ropriety belong. 

The critics have been singularly laudatory of this comedy. Wartou calls it " the most complete 
specimen of Shakspere's comic powers." Johnson says, "This comedy is remarkable for the 
variety and number of the personages, who exhil)it more characters appropriated and discriminated 

than perhaps can be found Ln any other play Its genei'al power, that power by which all 

works of genius shall finally be tried, is such, that perhaps it never yet had reader or spectator 
who did not think it too soon at the end." We agree with much of this ; but we certainly cannot 
agree witli Warton that it is "the most complete specimen of Shakspere's comic powers." 
We cannot forget As You Like Ifc^ and Twelfth Night, and Much Ado about Nothing. We 
cannot forget those exquisite combinations of the highest wit with the purest poetry, in which the 


wit 3ow3 from the same everLwting fountain ns the poetry, — both revealing all that is most intense 
and profound and beautiful and graceful in humanity. Of those qualities which put Shakspero 
above all other men that ever existed, the Merry Wives of 'Windsor exhibits few traces. Some 
of the touches, however, which no other hixnd could give, are to bo found in Slentler, and wo think 
in Quickly. Slender, little as ho has to do, is the character that most frequently floats before our 
fancy when we think of the Merry Wives of Windsor. Slender and Anno Pago are the 
favourites of our modern school of English painting, which attempted, and fiuccessfully, to carry 
the truth of the Dutch School into a more ix'fiued i-egion of domestic art. Wo do not wish Anne 
Pago to have been married to Slender, but in their poetical alliance they are inseparable. It is in 
the remodelled play th:it wo fmd, for the most part, such Shaksperian passages in the cliaracter of 
Slender as, " If I be drunk, I'll bo drunk with those that have the fear cf God, and not with 
drunken knaves," — which resolve, as Evans says, shews his " virtuous mind." In the remodelled 
play, too, we find the most peculiar traces of the master-hand in Quickly, — such as, " His worst fault 
is that he is given to prayer ; he is something peevish that way ; " and '' the boy never need to under- 
stand anything, for 'tis not good that children should know any wickedness. Old folks, you know, 
have discretion, as they say, and know the world ; " and again, " Good hearts ! what ado there is 
to bring you together, sure one of you does not servo heaven well that you are so crossed." Johnson 
objects to this latter passage as profane ; but he overlooks the extraordinary depth of the satire. 
Shakspere's profound knowledge of the human heart is as much displayed in these three little 
sentences as in hi.s Hamlet and his lago. 

The principal action of this comedy — the adventures of Falstaff with the Merry Wives — sweeps 
on with a rapidity of movement which hurries us forward to the denouement as irresistibly as if 
the actors were under the influence of that destiny which belongs to the empire of ti-agedy. No 
reverses, no di-'graces, can save Falstaff from his final humiliation. The net is around him, but ho 
does not see the meshes ; — he fancies himself the deceiver, but he is the deceived. Ho will stare 
Ford "out of his wits," he will "awe him with his cudgel," yet he lives "to bo carried in a basket 
like a barrow of butcher's offal, and to be thrown into the Thames." But his confidence is undauntc<l : 
"I will be thrown into Etna, as I Lave Icen into Thnines, ere I will leave her;" yet "since 
I plucked geese, jjlayed truant, and whipped top, I knew not what it was to bo beaten till lately." 
Lastly, he will rush upon a third adventure : " This is the third time, I hope good luck lies in odd 
numbers;" yet his good luck ends in "I do begin to perceive that I am made an ass." The 
'ealousy of Ford most skilfully helps on the merry devices of his wife ; and with equal skill does 
the poet make him throw away his jealousj-, and assist in the last plot against the " unclean 
knight." The misadventures of Falstaff are most agreeably varied. The disguise of the old 
woman of Brentford puts him altogether in a different situation to his suffocation in the buck 
basket ; and the fairy machinery of Heme's Oak carries the catastrophe out of the region of comedy 
into that of romance. 

The movement of the principal action is beautifully contrasted with the occasional repose of the 
other scenes. The Windsor cf the time of Elizabeth is presented to us, as the quiet country town, 
sleeping under the shadow of its neighbour the castle. Amidst its gabled houses, separated by 
pretty gardens, from which the elm and the chestnut and the lime throw their branches across the 
unpaved roatl, we find a goodly company, with little to do but gossip and laugh, and make sport out 
of each other's cholers and weaknesses. We see Master Page training his " fallow greyhoimd ; " 
and we go with Master Ford " a-birding." We listen to the "pribbles and prabbles" of Sir Hugh 
Evans and Justice Shallow, with a quiet satisfaction ; for they talk as unartificial men ordinarily 
talk, without much wi.sdom, but with good temper and sincerity. Wo find ourselves in the days 
of ancient hospitality, when men could make their fellows welcome without ostentatious display, and 
half a dozen neighbours "could drink down all unkindness" over "a hot venison pasty." The 
more busy inhabitmts of the town have time to tattle, and to laugh, and be laughed at. Mine Host 
of the Garter is the prince of hosts ; he is the very soul of fun and good temper ; — he is not 
solicitous whether FiUstaff sit "at ten pounds a week" or at two; — ho readily takes " the withered 
serving man for a fresh tapster ; " — his confidence in his own cleverness is delicious : — " am I politic, 
am I subtle, am I a Machiavel?" — the Germans "shall h.ave my horses, but I'll make them p.iy, 
I'll sauce thenj." When he loses his horses, and his "mind is heavy," we rejoice that Fenton 
will give him " a hundred pound in gold " more than his loss. His contrivances to m.mage the fray 



oetween the furious French doctor, and the honest Welsh parson, are productive of the happiest 
situations. Caius waiting for his adversary — " de herring is no dead so as I vill kill him" — is capital. 
But Sir Hugh, with his, — 

" There will we make our peds of roses, 
And a tliousand fragrant posies, 
To shallow- 
Mercy on me ! I have a great dispositions to crj-," — is inimitable. 

With regard to the under-plot of Fenton and Anue Page — the scheme of Page to marry her to 
Slender — the counter-plot of her mother, "firm for Dr. Caius" — and the management of the lovers 
to obtain a triumph out of the devices agaiust them — it may be sufficient to point out how .skilfully 
it is interwoven with the Heme's Oak adventure of Fal.staff. Though Slender "went to her iu 
white, and cry'd, mum, and she cry'd budget, . . . yet it was not Anne, but a postmaster's boy;" — 
though Caius did "take her in green," he "ha' married un gargon, a boy; un paisan ;"■ — but 
Anne and Fenton 

" long since contracted, 

Are now so sure, that nothing can dissolve them.'' 

Over all the misadventures of that night, when "all sorts of deer were chas'd,' Shakspere throws 
his own tolerant spirit of forgiveness and content : — 

"Good luisband, let us everyone go home, 
And laugh this sport o'er by a country fire ; 
Sir .Tohn and all." 



}>--. ' 




■ '"a >■ ■ 



. rf V*' 




CoMEDiBS.— Vol. I. 


A. ' V. S. r'i:<» I. '^ 


;!ttstormlioii uf the Srcond Temple of Di.-iiin, at Kplifk.r^i 


State or the Text, axd Chroxologt, of the Comedt op Errors. 

The Comedy of Eirora was fimt printed in the folio collection of Shaksporc's Piny* in 1623. 
There can be no doubt that it was therein print«cl from the author's manuAcript. Appearing for the 
first time after the death of Sbakjipcrc, this copy presents many typographicnl crrom ; and in a 
few paamges the ttrxt i- 'upt. "p) • - ■ • 

and the original cojiy is . fur the : . ' , 

in adhering to thia text, waa more distinctly oppoaed to St««Tena than in other playa, in which ho 
haa, though ev: ■ ry to his own bettor opinion, a<lopte<l tho auggeationii of Steevcns and 

others, who in*.; . v.u^t they con-'' "^ ' 'amendments, but which amendmcntJi were founded 

upon an imperfect knowledge of tho \ ^y and metro of their author. Tho rejcction-s by 

Malone of tho changes of Steevens are here made with somewhat more of pertinacity, and perhaps of 
ill t • ■ - *' •: w.-u common with him. 

i _ of Errors was clearly one of Shakapcre's very early plays. It was probably 

antouchcd by itd author after its first production. We have hero no existing sketch to enable us 
to trace what lie iiitn.'luccd, and what ho corrected, in the maturity of his j' It was, wo 

imagine, one of the pieces for which he would manifest little eolicitudo after .... ,, was fully 
developed. The play is amongst those mentioned by Meres in 1598. Tho only allusion in it 
which cnn be taken to fix a date, is that which is suppose<I to refer to the civil contests of Franco 

P -2 211 


upon the accession of Henry IV. We have noticed this passage in our Illustrations of Aet III.; 
but we are by no means siu'e that the equivoque in the description of France, "arm'd and reverted, 
making war against her heir," is to be received with i-eference to the war of the League. The 
spelling of hcire in the original copy is not conclusive; for the words heire and Jiaire are con- 
founded in other places of the early copies of Shakspere's dramas. At any rate, the change of 
heire to haire in the second folio shows that the supposed allusion to Henry IV. was forgotten 
in 1G32. 

We must depend, then, upon the internal evidence of this being a very early play. This evidence 

1, In the great prevalence of that measure which was known to our language as early as the time of 
Chaucer, by the name of " rime dogerel." This peculiarity is found only in three of our author's plays, 
— in Love's Labour's Lost, in the Taming of the Shrew, and in the Comedy of Errors. But this 
measure was a distinguishing chai-acteristic of the early English drama. It prevails very much more 
in this play than in Love's Labour's Lost; for prose is here much more sparingly introduced. The 
doggrel seems to stand half-way between prose and verse, marking the distinction between the language 
of a work of art, and that of ordinary life, in the same way that the recitative does in a musical com- 
position. It is to be observed, too, iu the Comedy of Errors, that this measure is very carefully 
regulated by somewhat strict laws : — 

" We earae into the world like brother and brother, 
Ami now let 's go hand in hand, not one before another." 

This concluding passage, which is cast in the same mould as the other similar verses of the play, h 
much more regular in its structure than the following in Love's Labour 's Lost : — 

" And such barren plants are set before us, that we thankful should be, 
AVhieh we of taste and feeling are, for those parts tliat do fructify in us more than I.e." 

Tlie latter hue almost reminds us of 'Mrs. Harris's Petition,' which, according to Swift, "Humbly 


" That I went to warm myself in Lady Betty'i c;,:'mt)er, because I was cold. 
And 1 had in a purse seven pounds, four shillings and sixpence, besides farthings, in money and gold." 

The measure in the Comedy of Errors was formed by Shakspere upon his rude predecessors. In some 
of these it is not only occasionally introduced, but constitutes the great mass of the dialogue. 
In ' Gammer Gurton's Needle,' for example, a long play of five acts, which has been called the first 
English comedy, the doggrel measure prevails throughout, as in the concluding lines : — 

" But now, my good masters, since we must be gone, 
And leave you behind us, here all alone. 
Since at our lasting ending, tlius merry we be, 
For Gammer Gurton's Needle's sake, let us have a plaudytie." 

The supposed earlier comedy of 'Ralph Roister Doister' is composed in the same measure. Nor was 
it in humorous i^erformances alone that this structure of verse (which Shakspere always uses as a 
vehicle of fun) was introduced. In 'Damon and Pithias,' a serious play, which was probably produced 
about 1570, the sentence of Dionysius is thus pronounced iipon Pithias : — 

" Pithias, seeing thou takest me at my word, take Damon to thee: 
For two months he is thine; unbind him ; I set him free; 
W'liicli time once expired, if he appear not the next day by noon. 
Without further delay thou shalt lose tliy life, and that full soon." 

There cannot, we think, be a stronger proof that the Comedy of Errors was an early play of our 
author, than its agreement, in this jmrticular, with the models which Shakspere found in his almost 
immediate predecessors. 

2. In Love's Labour's Lost, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer-Night's Dream, and the Comedy 
of Errors, alteraate rhymes are very frequently introduced. Shakspere obtained the mastery over 
this species of verso in the Venus and Adonis, " the first heir of his invention," as he himself calls 
it. He writes it with extraordinary facility — with an ease and power that strikingly contrast with 
the more laboured elegiac stanzas of modern times. Nothing can be more harmonious, or the har- 



mouy more varied, thau this measure iii Shak.spero's b»u.ld. Tako, for exjuuplo, the woll-kuown linos 
lu the Venus and Adonis, which, themselves the moat perfect music, have been allied to one of tU 
most successful musical compositions of the present day • — 

" Bid me dUcourse, I will enchant thine car, 
Or, like a fairy, trip upon Ihe Bfccii, 
Or, like a nymph, with long dishcvell'd hair, 
Dance on the sands, and yet no fuotinK seen." 

Compare these with the following in Love's Labour 's Lost :— 

" A wither'd hermit, five-5core winters worn. 
Might sliakc off firiy, looking in her eye; 
Beauty doth varnish age, as if new born, 
And gives the crutch the cradle's Infancy." 

Or with these, iu Romeo and Juliet : — 

" If I profane with my unworthicst hand 
This holy shrine, the gentle sin is this, — 
My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand, 
To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss." 

Or with some of the lines in A Midsummer-Night's Dream, such as, 

" \Vhy should you think that I should woo in scorn r 
Scorn and derision never come in tears : 
Look, when I vow I weep ; and vows so born 
In their nativity all truth appears." 

Or, lastly, with the exquisite address of Antipholus of Syracuse to Luciana, in the third act of the 
Comedy of Errors. 

" Teach mo, dear creature, how to think and speak ; 
Lay open to my earthy gross conceit, 
Smother'd in errors, feeble, shallow, weak, 
The folded meaning of your words' deceit." 

There w;i3 clearly a time in Shakspere's poetical life when ho delighted in this Bpecie.<j of versification ; 
and iu many of the instances in which he has employed it in the dramas wo have mentioned, the 
passages have somewhat of a fragmentary appearance, as if they were not originally cast in a dramatic 
mould, but were amongst scattered thoughts of the young poet which had bhaped themselves 
into verse, without a purpose beyond that of embodying his feeling of the beautiful and the harmo- 
nious. When the time arrived that he had fully dedicated himself to the great work of his life, ho 
rarely ventured upon cultivating these offshoots of hi.s early ver-sification. The duggrel wa.s entirely 
rejected— the alternate rhymes no longer tempted him by their music to introduce a measure which is 
so uxfly akin with the dramatic spirit — the couplet was adopted more and more ajxiriugly — and he 
iiinliy adheres to the blauk verse which he may almost be said to have created,— in his hands certainly 
the grandest as well as the sweetest form in which the highest thoughts were ever UJifolded to 
listening humanity. 

SurrosED Socrce of thb Plot. 

The commentators have puzzled themselves, after their usual fashion, with the evidence which this 
play undoubtedly presents of Sbokepere's ability to read Latin, and their dogged resolution to 
mamtam the opinion that in an age of grammar schools our poet never could have attained that 
common accomplishment. The speech of iEgeon, in the first scene, 

" A heavier ta>k could not have betn Impos'd 
Than I to speak my griefs unspeakable," — 



I-i, they admit, an iuiitatiou of tlift 

" Iiifanduni, Hegina, jubes lenovaie doloreiu " 
of Virgil. 

" Thou avt an elm, my husband, I a vine," 

is in Catullus, Ovid, aud Horace. The " owls " that " suck our breath " are the " strif/es " of Ovid. 
The apostroi>he of Dromio to the virtues of " beating" — " AVhen I am cold he heats me with beating; 
when I am warm he cools me with beating ; I am waked with it when I sleep ; rais'd with it when I 
sit; driven out of doors with it when I go from home; welcomed home with it when I return ;" — is 
modelled upon Cicero : — " Hscc studia adolescentiau) agunt, senectutem oblectant, secundas res oi-nant, 
adversis perfugium ac solatium praebent, delectant domi, non impediunt foris, pernoctant nobiscum, 
peregrinantur, rusticantur." The burning of the conjurer's beard is an incident copied from the 
twelfth book of Virgil's /Eneid, where Corintcus singes "the goodly bush of hair" of Ebusus, in a 
manner scarcely consistent with the dignity of heroic poetry. Lastly, in the original copy of the 
Comedy of Errors, the Autipholus of Ephcsus is called Sereptus — a corruption of the epithet by which 
one of the twin brothers in Plautus is distinguished — Mcnceckmus Siirreptus. There was a translation 
of this comedy of Plautus, to which we shall presently more fully advert. " If the poet bad not 
dii)ped into the original Plautu.s," su.ys Capell, " Suvreptus had never stood in his copy, the translation 
having no *uch ac/nomen, but calling one brother simply Mencschmus, the other Sosiclcs." With all 
these admissions on the part of some of those who proclaimed that Farmer had made a wonderful 
discovery when he attempted to prove that Shakspere did not know the difference between clarus and 
cams — (See Henry V., Act v., Illu.stration) — they will not swerve from their belief that his mind was 
80 constituted as to be incapable of attaining that species of knowledge which was of the easiest 
attainment in his own day, — and for the teaching of which a school was expressly endowed at 
Stratford-upon-Avon. Steevens says, " Shakspere might have taken the general plan of this comedy 
from a translation of the Menajchmi of Plautus, by W. W., i. e. (according to Wood) William Warner, 
in 1595." llitson thinks that Shakspere was under no obligation to this translation; but that the 
Comedy of Errors " was not originally his, but proceeded from some inferior playwright, who was 
capable of reading the Menaichmi without the help of a translation." Malone entirely disagrees with 
Ritson's theory that this comedy was founded uj^on an earlier production ; but sets up a theory of his 
own to get over the difficulty started by Ritson, that not a single name, woi'd, or line, is taken from 
Warner's translation. A play called 'The Historic of Error' was enacted before Queen Elizabeth, 
"by the children of Powles," in 1576; and from this piece, says Malone, "it is extremely jDrobable 
that he was furnished with the fable of the present comedy," as well as the designation of " surreptus." 
Here is, unquestionablj', a very early play of Shakspei-e, — and yet Steevens maintains that it was taken 
from a tran.slation of Plautus, published in 1595 ; the play has no resemblance, beyond the general 
character of the incidents, to this translation, — and therefore Ritson pronounces that it is not entirely 
Shakspere's work ; — and -while Malone denies this, he guesses that the Comedy of Errors w-as founded 
upon a much older play. And why all this contradictory hypothesis ? Simply, because these most 
learned men are resolved to hold their own heads higher than Shakspere, by maintaining that he could 
not do what they could — read Plautus in the original. We have not a doubt that the Comedy of 
EiTors was written at least five years before the publication of Warner's translation of the Menrcchmi ; 
and, furthei-, that Shak.spere in the composition of his own play was perfectly familiar with the 
Mena3chmi of Plautus. In Hamlet he gives, in a word, the characteristics of two ancient dramatists; 
— his criticism is decisive as to his familiarity with the originals : " Seneca cannot be too heavy, nor 
Plautus too liriht." We shall furnish a few extracts from this translation of 1595 ; whence it will be 
seen, incidentally, that the lightness of the free and natural old Roman is wondrously loaded by the 
l>rosaic hand of Master William Warner. 

The original ai-gument of the Menffichmi, it will be perceived, at once gave Shakspere the epithet 
aurreptas, as well as furnished him with some of the characters of his play, much more distinctly than 
the tracalatiou, which we present with it : — 




" Mercator Siculus, cui erant i;emini filii ; 
Ki, sunrpto altero, mors obtigit. 
Notnen turreptitii illi indit qui domi est 
Avus patemui, facit Mcnicohniutn Sntirlnn. 
Et is gerro.inuin, postquam adok-vit, quirrilat 
Circum omne s oros. Post Epidainnum dcrenii : 
}llc fuerat auctus ille siirrcptitius. 
MciiiFrhmum civi-m crnlunt omnct advrnain : 
Kuuiqui? apia-Uiinl, nif n-trix, uxor et iocer. 
li se cognoscunt fratres poslrvm6 invicem." 

" Two twiiibom sons, a Slrill inercliant Ind, 
Mcnecliiniis one, and Soilclct tlic other: 
The flrst Ills father lost a Utile lad. 
The grandtiru nr.meit the latter like his brutlicr. 
This (i;rowii a mnn) luiis; travel took to seek 
IHa brother, and t<> '. 

WhiTe Ih' nihcr il' su like, 


Father, « .■ either, 

Much pleaaant error, ere they meet together." 

This ai-gumcut is almost sufficient to point out the diffotxjnco between the \>\oi» of Plnutus nnJ of 
Shakspere. It stands in tho place of the beautiful nnnittivo of iEgeon, in the first sccuo of tl»o 
Comeily of KrroiT?. In I'lautus wo have no broken-heartoil father bereft of both his sons : ho is doa<l ; 
and the grandfather changes the name of tho one child who remains to him. Shakspere <loe8 j»ot etop 
to tell us how tho twin-brothers bear the &tnie name ; nor does ho explain the matter any uiure in tho 
caac of the Dromios, whose introduction upon the scene is his own creation. In I'lautus, the brother, 
Mennechnuis Sosiclcs, who remuncd with the grandsire, comes to Kpidauuniiii, in search of liis twin- 
brother who waa st'deu, and he is aecomi)anied bj- his servant Messenio ; but all the perplexities that 
are so naturally occasioned by the confusion of the two twin-servants are entirely wanting. The 
mistakes are carried on by the "meretrix, uxor, et socer," (softened by Warner into " father, wife, 
neighbours"). We have " Medicus," the prototype of Doctor Pinch ; but the mother of the twins is 
not found in Plautus. We scarcely need say that the Parasite and tho Father-in-law have no place in 
Shakspcre's comedy. The scene in the Comedy of Errors is changed from Epidatnnum to Kphcsiu ; 
but we have mention of Epidamnuiu ouco or twice in the play. 

The Mcnx'chmi opens with the favourite character of tho Roman comedy — tho Paiiisite ; the scene 
is at Epidamnum. The Paraaite is going to dine with Menaschmus, who comes out from his house, 
upbraiding his jealous wife. But his wife is not jealoun without provocation. 

" Hanc inod6 uxori intus palam surripui ; ad scortum Tero." 

The Antipholus of .Shakspere docs not propose to dine with ono " pretty and wild," and to be-stow 
" the chain " upon his hostess, till he has been provoked by having his own doors shut upon him. 
Our poet has thus preserved some sympathy for his Antipholus, which tho Mcna>cbmu9 of Pkutus 
forfeits upon his first entrance. Menrcchmus and the Parasite go to dine with Erotium (V 
Those who talk of Shakspero'e anachrouiisms have never pointed out to us what formidable : ■ - 
the translators of Shakspere's time did not scruple to take with their originals. Menrcchmus gives 
very precise directions for his dinner, after tho most approved Roman fashion : — 

" Jube igitur nobis tribus apud tc prandlum accur.irier, 
Atque allquid scitanientoruni de foro ntisonarier, 
Glandionidem suillatn, laridum pemoiildt.m, aiit 
Sinciput, But politnenta porcina, aut aliquld ad eum modum." 

This paAHAge W. W. thu* interpret*;— ],■ i a gou.l (iiiiin.M- i"- inaic i..r us tiu-.''. iiviK y<', .-«mc 
oystcm, a mnry-bone pie or two, some artichokcj", and potito routu ; let our other dished be as you 
please." In reading this bald attempt to transfuse the Roman luxuries into words accommodated to 
En.<li.ih ideaj, we are forcibly reminded how "rare Ben" dealt with the spirit of antiquity iu bucL 
nutters : — 

" Ths tongues of carps, dormice, and cameU' heels. 
Boil'd in the spirit of sol, and dissolv'd pearl, 
Apicius' diet, 'gainst the epilepsy : 
And I will cat these broths with spoons of amber 
Headed with diamond and carbuncle. 
My foot-boy shall eat pheasants, ralvcr'd salrooni 
Knots, godwits, liimpreyi : I myself will have 
The beards of barbels serT'd, instcid <.f nUads ; 
Oird raoibrooms," Sic.—AlchemUl, Act ii., sc. I. 



The second Act in Plautus opens with the landing of Menrechrans Sosicles and Messenio, at 
Epidamnum. The following is Warner's translation of the scene : — 

"Men. Surely, Messenio, I think seafarers never take so comfortable a joy in any thing as, when they have been long 
tost and turmoiled in the wide seas, they hap at last to ken land. 

Afes. I'll be sworn, I should not be gladder to see a whole country of mine own, than I have been at such a sight. lUil 
I pray, wherefore are we now come to Epidamnum! must we needs go to sec every town that we hear of? 

Afen. Till I find my brother, all towns are alike to me : I must try in all places. 

Mes. Why then, let 's even as long as we live seek your brother: six years now have we roamed about thus, Istria, 
Ilispania, Massylia, Illyria, all the upper sea, all high Greece, all haven towns in Italy. I think if we had sought a needle 
all this time we must needs have found it, had it been above ground. It cannot be that he is alive; and to seek a dead 
man thus among the living, what folly is it? 

Men. Yea, could I but once find any man that could certainly inform me of his death, I were satisfied ; otherwise I can 
never desist seeking: little knowest thou, Messenio, how near my heart it goes. 

Mcs. This is washing of a blackamoor. Faith, let 's go home, unless ye mean we should write a story of our travail. 

Men. Sirrah, no more of these saucy speeches. I perceive I must teach you how to serve me, not to rule me. 

Mcs. Ay, so, now it appears what it is to be a servant. Well, I must speak my conscience. Do ye hear, air? Faith 
I must tell you one thing, when I look into the lean estate of your purse, and consider advisedly of your decaying stock, 
I hold it very needful to be drawing homeward, lest in looking your brother, we quite lose ourselves. For this assure 
yourself, this town, Epidamnum, is a place of outrageous expenses, exceeding in all riot and lasciviousness : and (I hear) 
a-i full of ribalds, parasites, drunkards, catchpoles, coney-catchers, and sycophants, as it can hold. Then for courtezans, 
why here's the currentest stamp of them in the world. You must not think here to scape with as light cost as in other 
places. The very name shows the nature, no man comes hither sine damno. 

Men. You say very well indeed : give me my purse into mine own keeping, because I will so be the safer, sine damno." 

Steevens considered that the description of Ephesus in the Comedy of Eiror-s, 

"They say, this town is full of cozenage," Sec. 

was derived from Warner's translation, where " ribalds, jjarasites, drunkards, catch-poles, coney-catchers, 
sycophants, and courtezans," are found ; the voluiDtarii, potatores, sycophanfa, palpatorcs, and mere- 
trices of Plautus. But surely the "jugglers," "sorcerers," "witches," of Shakspere are not these. 
With his exquisite judgment, he gave Ephesus more characteristic "liberties of sin." The cook of 
the courtezan, in Plautus, first mistakes the wandering brother for the profligate of Epidamnum. 
Erotium next encounters him, and with her he dines ; and, leaving her, takes charge of a cloak which 
the Menffichmus of Epidamnum had given her. In the Comedy of Errors the stranger brother dines 
with the wife of him of Ephesus. The Parasite next meets with the wanderer, and being enraged 
that the dinner is finished in his absence, resolves to disclose the infidelities of Menffichmus to his 
jealous wife. The " errors" proceed, in the maid of Erotium bringing him a chain which she says he 
had stolen from his wife : he is to cause it to be made heavier and of a newer fashion. The traveller 
goes his way with the cloak and the chain. The jealous wife and the Parasite lie in wait for the 
faithless husband, who the Parasite reports is carrying the cloak to the dyer's ; and they fall with 
their reproaches upon the Mensechmus of Epidamnum, who left the courtezan to attend to his 
business. A scene of violence ensues ; and the bewildered man repairs to Erotium for his dinner. 
He meets with reproaches only ; for he knows nothing of the cloak and the chain. The stranger 
Menacchmus, who has the cloak and chain, encounters the wife of his brother, and of course he utterly 
denies any knowledge of her. Her father comes to her assistance, upon her hastily sending for him. 
He first reproaches his daughter for her suspicions of her liusband, and her shrewish temper : Luciana 
reasons in a somewhat Bimilar way with Adriana, in the Comedy of Errors; — and the Abbess is more 
earnest in her condemnation of the complaining wife. The scene in Plautus wants all the elevation 
that we find in .Shak.spere ; and the old man seems to think that the wife has little to grieve for, as 
long as she has food, clothes, and servants. Menocichmus, the traveller, of course cannot comprehend 
all this ; and the father and daughter agree that he is mad, and send for a doctor. He escapes from 
the discipline which is preparing for him ; and the doctor's assistants lay hold of Menajchmus, the 
citizen. He is rescued by Messenio, the servant of the traveller, who mistakes him for his master, and 
begs his freedom. The servant going to his inn meets with his real master ; and, while disputing with 
him, the Menachmus of Epidamnum joins them. Of course, the cclaircissement is the natural 
consequence of the presence of both upon the same scene. The brothers i-esolve to leave Epidam- 


num together ; the citizen making proclamation that he will sell all his goods, an J adding, with hii 
accustomed loose notions of conjugal duty, 

" Venibit uxor quoque etiam, si quis emptor vencrii." 

Hazlitt hxs s^iid, " This comedy is taken ftri/ tnuch from the Menrechtiii of Plautus, aud is not an 
improvement ou it." We think he is wrong in both assertions. 


Wk have noticed some of the anachronisms which the translator of PLiutus, in Shakspere's time, 
did not hesitate to introduce into his performance. W. W. did not do this ignonuitly ; for he was a 
learned person ; and, we are told in an address of " The Printer to his Readers," had " divers of this 
poet's comedies Englished, for the use and delight of his private friends, who in Plautus' own words 
are not able to understand them." There was, no doubt, a complete agreement as to the principle of 
such anachronisms in the writers of Shakspere's day. They employed tlie conventional ideas of their 
own time instead of those which properl}' belonged to the date of their story ; they translated images 
as well as words ; they were addressing imcritical readers and spectators, and they thought it necessary 
to make themselves intelligible by speaking of familiar instead of recondite things. Thus W. W. not 
only gives us mary-bone pies and potatoes, instead of the complicated messes of the Roman sensualist, 
but he talks of constables and toll -gatherers. Bedlam fools, and claret. In Donee's Essay 'On the 
Anachronisms and some other Incongruities of Shakspere,' the offences of our poet in the Comedy of 
Errors are thus summed up : — " In the ancient city of Ephesus we have ducats, marks, and guilders, 
and the Ablas of a yunncri/. Mention is also made of several modern European kingdoms, aud of 
America ; of Henry the Fourth of France,* of Turkish tapestry, a rapier, and a striking-clock ; of 
Lapland sorcerers, Sat;ui, and even of Adam and Noah. In one place Antipholus calls himself a 
Christian. As we are unacquainted with the immediate source whence this play was derived, it is 
impossible to ascertain whether Shakspere is responsible for these anachronisms." The ducats, marks, 
guilders, tapestry, rapier, striking-clock, and Lapland sorcerers, belong precisely to the fame class of 
anachronisms as those we have already exhibited from the pen of the translator of Plautus. Had 
Sh\kspere used the names of Grecian or Roman coins, his audience would not have understood him. 
Such matters have nothing whatever to do with the period of a dramatic action. But we think Douce 
was somewhat hasty in proclaiming that the Abbess of a Nunnenj, Satan, Adam and Noah, and 
Chris'ian, were anachronisms, in connexion with the " ancient city of Ephesus." 

Douce, .seeing that the Comedy of Errors was suggested by the Meuaichmi of Plautus, considere, no 
doubt, that Shakspere intended to place his action at the same period as the Roman play. It is 
manifest to us that he intended precisely the contrary. The Menrcchmi contains invocations in great 
number to the ancient divinities; — Jupiter and Apollo are here words. From the first line of 
the Comedy of Errors to the last we have not the slightest allusion to the chxssical mythology. Was 
there not a time, then, even in the ancient city of Ephesus, when there might be an Abbess, — men 
might call themselves Christians, — and Satan, Adam, and Noah might be names of common use f We 
do not mean to affirm that Shakspere intended to select the Ejjhesua of Christianity — the great city nf 
churches and councils — for the dwelling-place of Antipholus, any more than we think that Duke 
Solinus was a real personage — that " Duke Menaphon, his most renowned uncle," ever had any 
existence — or that even his name could be found in any story more trustworthy than that of Greene's 
' Arcadia.' The truth is, that in the same way that Ardennct was a sort of teira incognita of chiv.ilrj-, 
the poets of Sh.ikspere's time had no hesitation in placing the fables of the romantic ages in classic-d 
localities, leaving the periods aud the names perfectly undefined and unappreciablc. Who will 
undertake to fix a period for the action of Sir Philip Sydney's great romance, when the author has 
conveyed his reader into the fairy or pa.storal land, and informed him what manner of life the 
iuhabitants of that region lead ?" We cannot open a page of Sydney's ' Arcadia' without being struck 
with what we are accustomed to call anachronisms, —and these from a very severe critic, who, in hia 

* Mention it certainly not made or Henry IV. ; there is a luppoied aliu-iion to him 


' Defence of Poesy,' deuouuces with merciless severity all violation of the unities of the drama. One 
examjjle will suffice :— Histor and Damon sing a " double sestine." The classical spirit that pervades 
the following lines belongs to the " true Arcadian " age : — 

" O ]\Iercur)', foregoer to the evening, 

O heavenly liuntress of the savage mountains, 
O lovely star entitled of the morning. 
While tliat my voice doth fill these woful valleys, 
Vouchsafe your silent ears to plaining music. 
Which oft hath echo tired in secret forests." 

But to what period belong the following lines of the " Phaleuciacs," which Zelmeue sings, whose voice 
"strains the ca?ia?*)/-birds ?" 

" Her cannoyis he her eyes, mine eyes the walls be, 
Wtiich at first volley gave too open entry. 
Nor rampier did abide ; my brain was up-blown, 
Un'lennincd with a sjieech the piercer of tliouglits." 

Warton has prettily said, speaking of Spenser, " exactness in his poem would have been like the cornice 
which a painter introduced in the grotto of Calypso." Those who would define everything in poetry 
are the makers of corniced grottos. As we are not desirous of belonging to this somewhat obsolete 
fraternity, to which even Warton himself affected to belong when he wrote what is truly an apology 
for the Fairy Queen, we will leave our rcadei-.s to decide, — whether Duke Solinus reigned at Eijhesns 
before "the great temple, after having risen with increasing splendour from seven repeated mis- 
fortunes, was finally burnt by the Goths in their third naval invasion ;"* or whether he jiresided over 
the decaying city, somewhat nearer to the period when Justinian "filled Constantinople with its 
statues, and raised his church of St. Sojihia on its columns ;"+ or, lastly, whether he approached the 
period of its final desolation, when the " candlestick was removed out of its place," and the Christian 
Ephesus became the Mohammadan Aiasaluck. 

But decide as our readers may, — and if they decide not at all they will not derive less satisfaction 
from the perusal of this drama, — it becomes necessary for the demands of the modern stage that the 
Bcenery and costume should belong to some definite period. Our coadjutor, Mr. Plauche, has felt 
considerable difficult}' in this particular ; and the short notice which he gives on the subject of 
costume aims at greater precision than we .should consider necessary with reference to the poetical 
character of this play. This desire for exactness is, to a certain extent, an evil ; — and it is an evil 
which necessarily belongs to what, at first appearance, is a manifest improvement in the modern stage. 
The exceeding beauty and accui-acy of scenery and dress in our days is destructive, in some degree, to 
the poetical truth of Shakspcre's dramas. It takes them out of the region of the broad and universal, 
to impair their freedom and narrow their range by a typographical and chronological minuteness. 
When the word "Thebes"! was exhibited upon a painted board to Shakspcre's audience, their 
thoughts of that city wei-e in subjection to the descrii>tions of the poet ; but if a pencil as magical as 
that of Stanfiekl had shown them a Thebes that the child might believe to be a reality, the words to 
which they listened would have been comparatively uninteresting, in the easier gratification of the 
senses instead of the intellect. Poetry must always have something of the vague and indistinct in its 
character. The exact has its own province. Let Science explore the wilds of Africa, and ma^) out for 
us where there are mighty rivers and verdant plains in the places Avhere the old geographers gave us 
pictures of lions and elephants to designate undiscovered desolation. But let Poetry still have its 
imdefined countries ; let Arcadia remain unsurveyed ; let us not be too curious to inquire whether 
Dromio was an ancient heathen or a Christian, nor whether Bottom the weaver lived precisely at the 
time when Theseus did battle with the Centaurs. 

* Gibbon, chap. x. t Chandler. 

t See Sydney's Defence of Poesy. " Wliat child i^s tlierc that, coming to a play, and seeing Thebes written in 
letters upon an old door, dotli believe that it is Thebes?" This rude device was probably employed in the representation 
of the Tliebaii of Seneca, translated by Newton, 1581. 




The costume of this Comedy must, wo fear, be left convcutioual. The two masters, as well as 
the two servautd, must of course bo presumed to have been attired pi-ecisely alike, or the differcuco 
of dress would at least havo called f^>rlh some remark, had it not led to an imuiediato eclair- 
cissement ; and yet that the Syracusan travellers, both master and mau, should by mere chance 
be clothed in garments not only of the same fashion, but of the same colour, as those of their 
Ephesian brcthreu, is beyond the bounds of even sta^o probability. Were the scene laid during 
the classical era of Greece, as in ' the Meniechmi,' on which our Comedy was founded, the 
absurdity would not be quite so startling, as the Eimplo tunic of one slave mlyht accidentally 
resemble that of another ; aud the chlamys and petasus of the upper classes were at least of one 
general form, and ditfered but occasionally in colour; but the appearance of an Abbess renders it 
necessary to consider the events as passing at the time when Ephesus had become famed amongst 
the Christian cities of Asia Minor, and at least as late as the first establishment of religious com- 
munities (('. e. in the fourth century). 

We can only recommend to the artist the Byzantine Greek paintings and illuminations, or the 
costume adopted from them for Scriptural designs by the early Italian masters. 

[MeditI of Kphesub.] 



SoLisus, Duke of Ephesus. 
/Egeon, a merchant of Syracuse. 

»v.m. „„„.,.„ /• 1- 1 „ ^ twin brolhers, and sons In 

ANTiPiiOLiis of Epnesu.s, I 

,, , ,, r /Egeon and iEmiiia, IjuI 

Antipholus 0/ Syracuse, j ' 

DnoMlo of Ephesus, l twin brothers, and Attendants on 

Dromio of Syracuse, j the two Antipholuses. 

Balthazar, a merchant. 

Angelo, a goldsmith. 

A merchant, friend to Antipliolus of Syracuse. 

PiNCii, a schoolmaster, and a conjurer. 

yEiiir.iA, wife to JEgeon, an Abbess at Ephesus. 
Adriana, wife to Antipliolus of Ephesus. 
LuciASA, her sister. 
Luce, her servant. 
.{ Courtezan. 


i '-i''t-' 



SCENE I.— J ITail in the Duke'* Palace. 

Enter Dike, ^geox, Gaoler, OiScers, and 
other Attendants. 

^gr. Proceed, Solinus, to procure my f:dl, 
And, by the doom of death, end woes and all. 

Diike. Merchant of SjTacusa, plead no more ; 
I am not partial, to infringe our laws ; 
The enmity and discord, which of late 
Sprung from the rancorous outrage of your duke 
To merchants, our well-dealing countrymen, — 
Who, wanting gilders to redeem their lives, 
Have scaled his rigorous statutes with their 

bloods, — 
Excludes all pity from our threat nlug looks. 
For, since the mortal and intestine jars 
'Twixt thy seditious countrymen and us. 
It hath in solemn synods been decreed, 
Both by the Syracusans' and ourselves, 
To admit no traffic to our adverse towns : 

' Syracusaia. — In the first folio, Syracutam, as we now 
read, is invariably sp<"U Syracuiian*. In Malone's edition 
(1S21), the old spelling is restorcJ, Boswell statin? that it 
has the sanction of Beutley, in hU £pisllcs of Phalaris. 
We have considered that Syracuijanj is au error of the 

Nay, more. If any, bom at Ephcsns, 

Be seen at any Syracusan marts ar.d fair^. 

Again, If any Syracusan born. 

Come to the bay of Ephcsus, he dies, 

Ilis goods confiscate to the duke's dispose ; 

Unless a thousand marks be levied. 

To quit the penalty, and to ransom him.' 

Thy substance, valued at the highest rate. 

Cannot amount unto a hundred marks ; 

Tlierefore, by law thou art condemn'd to die. 

J^<?. Yet this my comfort ; when your words 
arc done, 
My woes end likewise with the evening sun. 

Duke. Well, Syracusan, say, in brief, the 
Why thou departedst from thy native home ; 
And for what cause thou cam'st to Ephesus. 

jEge. A heavier task could not have been im- 
Than I to speak my griefs unspeakable : 

early typography; for the Syracusani of the Latin naturaMj 
becomes the Syrarusanj of the English. Mr. Dyce, as well 
as Mr. Staunton, .Mr. Crant White in his .\mencan edition, 
and the Cambridge editnrs. l.oM to S'/racutiant. 


A(.r I.) 


[SctNS I. 

Yet, that the world may witness that my end 

Was wrought by nature,^ not by vile oll'enco, 

I '11 utter what my sorrow gives me leave. 

In Syracusa was I born ; and wed 

Unto a woman, happy but for me. 

And by me, too, liad not our hap been bad.'' 

With her I liv'd in joy ; our wealth iucreas'd, 

By prosperous voyages 1 often made 

To Epidamuum, till my factor's death, 

And the great care of goods at random left," 

Drew me from kind embracemeuts of my spouse : 

From whom my absence was not six months old, 

Before herself (almost at fainting under 

The pleasing punishment that women bear,) 

Had made provision for her following me. 

And soon, and safe, arrived where 1 was. 

There had she not been long, but she became 

A joyful mother of two goodly sous ; 

And, M'hich was strange, tlie one so like the 

As could not be distinguish'd but by names. 
That very hour, and in the self-same inn, 
A poor mean woman was delivered'' 
Of such a burden, male twins, both ald<e : 
Those, for their parents were exceeding poor, 
I bought, and brought up to attend my sons. 
My wife, not meanly proud of two such boys_, 
Made daily motions for oui* hom.e return : 
Unwilling I agreed ; alas, too soon. 
We came aboard : 

A league from Epidamnum had we sail'd. 
Before the always-wind-ol)cying deep 
Gave any tragic instance of our harm : 
But longer did we not retain much hope ; 
For wliat obscured light the heavens did grant 
Did but convey unto our fearful minds 
A doubtfid warrant of immediate death : 
Which, though myself would gladly have cm- 

Yet tlie incessant weepings of my wife. 
Weeping before for what she saw must come, 
And piteous plainings of the pretty babes. 
That mourn'd for fashion, ignorant what to fear, 
Forc'd me to seek delays for them and me. 
And this it was, — for other means was none. — 
The sailors souglit for safety by our boat, 
And left the sliip, then sinking-ripe, to us : 
My wife, most careful for tlie latter-born, 

n Bu nature — 1)y tlie impulses of nature, by natural afTec- 
tion, — as opposed to tile offence, the violation of the muni- 
cipal laws of Ephcsus. 

i> The word too in this line was supplied in the second 

c The first folio reads — 

" And he great care of goods at random left." 
Malone made the text easy and clear by the substitution of 

'1 The word poor in this line was added in the second folio. 


Had fasten'd him unto a small spare mast. 
Such as sea-faring men provide for storms : 
To him one of the other twins was bound. 
Whilst I had been like heedful of the other. 
Tlie childi-en thus dispos'd, my wife and J, 
Fixing our eyes on whom oui' care was fix'd, 
Fasten'd ourselves at either end the mast ; 
And floating straight, obedient to the stream. 
Were carried towards Corinth, as we thought. 
At length the sun, gazing upon the earth, 
Dispers'd those vapours that offended us ; 
And, by the benefit of his wish'd light. 
The seas wax'd calm, and we discovered 
Two ships from far making amain to us. 
Of Corinth that, of Epidaurus this : 
But ere they came, — O, let me say no more ! 
Gather the sequel by that went before. 

Didce. Nay, forward, old man, do not break 

off so ; 
For we may pity, though not pardon thee. 
/Ege. 0, had the gods done so, I had not 

Worthily term'd them merciless to us ! 
For ere the ships could meet by twice five 

We M-ere encounter'd by a mighty rock ; 
Wiiicli being violently borne upon. 
Our helpful ship was splitted in the midst, 
So tliat, in this unjust divorce of us. 
Fortune had left to both of us alike 
Wliat to delight in, what to sorrow for. 
Her part, poor soul ! seeming as bui-dencd 
With lesser weight, but not with lesser woe. 
Was carried with more speed before the wind : 
And in our sight they three were taken up 
By fisliermen of Corinth, as we thought. 
At length, another ship had seized on us ; 
And, knowing whom it was their hap to save. 
Gave healthful welcome to their shipwreck'd 

guests ; 
And would have reft the fishers of their prey. 
Had not their bark been very slow of sail, 
And therefore homeward did they bend their 

Thus have you heard me sever'd from my bliss ; 
That by misfortunes was my life prolong'd, 
To tell sad stories of my own misliaps. 

DuJce. And, for the sake of them thou soi- 

rowest for. 
Do me the favour to dilate at fuU 
What hath bcfall'n of them, and thee, till now. 
JUt/e. My youngest boy, and yet my eldest. 

At eighteen years became inquisitive 
After his brother ; and importun'd me, 

AlT I ] 


[ScRse II. 

That his attendant, (so his case was like," 
Reft of his brother, but retain'd his name,) 
Might bear him company in the quest of liim : 
Whom wliilst I hibour'd of a love to sec, 
I hazarded the loss of whom I lov'd. 
Five summers have I spent iu farthest Greece, 
RoaminfT clean throuirh the bounds of A^ia, 
And, coasting homeward, came to Ephesus ; 
Hopeless to find, yet loath to leave unsought. 
Or that, or any place that harbours men. 
But here must end the story of my life ; 
And happy were I in my timely death. 
Could all my travels warrant mc they live. 

Ditke. Hapless .Eircon, whom the fates have 
To bear the extremity of dire mishap ! 
Now, trust me, were it not against our laws. 
Against my crown, my oath, my dignity, 
Which princes, would they, may not disannul. 
My soul shoidd sue as advocate for thee. 
But, though thou art adjudged to the death. 
And passed sentence may not be reeall'd 
But to our honour's great disparagement. 
Yet will I favour thee in what I can : 
Therefore, merchant, I '11 limit thee this day, 
To seek thy help by beneficial help : 
Try all the friends thou hast in Ephesus . 
Beg thou, or borrow, to make up the sum. 
And live ; if no, then thou art doom'd to die : — 
Gaoler, take \\\m. into thy custody. 

Gaol. I will, my lord. 

.^v. Hopeless, and helpless, doth iEgcon 
But to procrastinate his lifeless end. [Exeunt. 

SCENE l\.— A public Place. 

Enter Antipholus and Dkomio of Syracuse, 
and a Merchant. 

Mer. Therefore, give out, you aie of Epi- 

Lest that your goods too soon be confiscate. 
This very day, a Syracusan merchant 
Is ' ' for arrival here; 

Ai. ., .. -' able to buy out his life, 

According to the statute of the town, 
Dies ere the weary sun set in the west 
There is your money that 1 had to keep. 

A'lt. S. Go, bear it to the Centaur, where we 

Aud stay there, Dromio, till I come to thee. 
Within this hour it will be dinner-time : 
Till that, I 'U view the manners of the town, 

» So ku cate rat liM*.—So is the readinR <f the first 
folio ;— his case was so like that of Antipholus. 

Penise the traders, gaze upon the buildings, 
,\nd then return, and sleep within mine inn; 
For with long travel I am still" and weary. 
Get thee away. 

Dro. S. Many a man would take you at your 
And go indeed, having so good a mean. 

[Eril Dro. S. 

J/it. S. A trusty villain, sir, that very off. 
When I am dull with care and melancholy, 
Lightens my humour with his merry jests. 
What, will you walk with me about the town, 
.\nd then go to my inn and dine with me ? 

Mir. I am invited, sir, to certain merchants, 
Of whom I hope to make much benefit ; 
I crave your pardon. Soon at five o'clock," 
Please you, I'll meet with you upon the mart. 
And afterward consort you till bed-time ; 
My present business calls mc from you now. 

yhit. i>. farewell till then: I will go lose 
And wander up and down, to view the city. 

Mer. Sir, I commend vou to your own content. 

" [Exit Merchant. 

Jut. S. He that commends mc to mine own 
Commends me to the thing I cannot get. 
1 to the world am like a drop of water. 
That in the ocean seeks another drop ; 
WTio, falling there to find his fellow forth. 
Unseen, inquisitive, confounds himself: 
So I, to find a mother and a brother. 
In quest of them, unhappy, lose myself. 

Enter Dromio o/" Ephesus. 

Here comes the almanack of my true date — 
What now? How chance, thou art ret urn' <\ =f 

soon ? 
Ih-o. E. Return'd so soon ! rather approacli'a 

too late : 
The capon burns, the pig falls from the spit ; 
Tlie clock hath stnicken twelve upon the bell, 
My mistress made it one upon my cheek : 
She is so hot, because the meat is cold ; 
The meat is cold, because you come not home ; 
You come not home, because you have no 

stomach ; 
You have no stomach, having broke your fast ; 
But we, that know what 't is to fast and pray, 
Are penitent •* for your default to-day. 

» Soon at /ire o'clock.— T\u» is ordinarily printed, "Soon, 
at five o'cluclc." Mul Antipholus s-iys — 

" Within this hour it will be dinner-time." 
The time of dinner was twelve ; therefore five o'clock would 
not have been won. We must therefore understand the 
phrase as about five o'clock, 
b p,-7iitenl.—ln the tense of doing penance. 


Act 11 



Ant. S. Stop in your wind, sii' ; tell me this, 
I pray : 
Where have you left the mouey that I gave you ? 
Dro. E. 0, — sixpeuce, that I had o' Wednes- 
day last. 
To pay the saddler for my mistress' crupper ; 
The saddler had it, sir ; I kept it not. 

A}tt. S. I am not in a sportive humour now : 
Tell me, and dally not, where is the money ? 
We being strangers here, how dar'st thou trust 
So great a charge from thine own custody ? 
Dro. E. I pray yon, jest, sir, as you sit at 
dinner : 
I from my mistress come to you in post ; 
If I return, I shall be post indeed ; " 
For she will score your fault upon my pate. 
Methinks, your maw, like mine, should be your 

And strike you home without a messenger. 
yliiL /S'. Come, Dromio, come, these jests are 
out of season ; 
Reserve them till a merrier hom* than this : 
Where is the gold I gave in charge to thee ? 
Dro. E. To me, sir ? why you gave no gold 

to me. 
Ant. S. Come on, sir knave ; have done your 
And tell me how thou hast dispos'd thy charge. 
Dro. E. My charge was but to fetch you fro' 
the mart 
Home to youi- house, the Phoenix, sir, to dinner ; 
My mistress and her sister stay for you. 

Ant. S. Now, as I am a christian, answer me. 
In what gafe place you have bcstow'd'^ my mouey; 

* 1 cjt indeed. — The post of a shop was used as the tally- 
board of a publicari is now used, to keep the score. 
b Peilow'i,—stov(eA, deposited. 

Or I shall break that merry sconce of yours. 
That stands on tricks when I am undispos'd : 
Where is the thousand marks thou hadst of me ? 
Dro. E. I have some marks of youi's upon 
my pate. 
Some of my mistress' marks upon my shoulders, 
But not a thousand marks between you both. 
If I should pay your worship those again. 
Perchance, you will not bear them patiently. 
A>/t. S. Thy mistress' marks ? what mistress, 

slave, hast thou ? 
Dro. E. Your worship's wife, my mistress at 
the Phcenix ; 
She that doth fast till you come home to dinner, 
And prays, that you will hie you home to pinner 
A)t(. S. Wliat, wilt thou flout me thus unto 
my face, 
Being forbid ? There, take you that, sir knave. 
Dro. E. What mean you, sir ? for God's sake, 
hold your hands ; 
Nay, an you will not, sir, I '11 take my heels. 

\_Exit Dko. E. 
Ant. S. Upon my life, by some device or 
The villain is o'er-raught"' of all my money. 
They say, this town is full of cozenage ; 
As, nimble jugglers that deceive the eye, 
Dark-working sorcerers that change the mind, 
Soul-killing witches that deform the Lody, 
Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks. 
And many such like liberties of sin : "^ 
If it prove so, I wUl be gone the sooner. 
I '11 to the Centaur, to go seek this slave ; 
I greatly fear my money is not safe. [E.rit. 

■■> o'er ruughl, — over-reached. 

'i f.fltrrtics of sin. — Some would rend lihcrli ins. 

te,;':-'''>/:v;>.'|y:::if?:;;*''^^;.':r'' ■' 

f } 

[' AVe were enccun'ered by a mi^-Vy lock,'] 


Scene I. 
' " /( hath In solemn synods been decreed, 
Both by the ^yracusans and oursehes, 
To admit no traffic to our adverse towns : 
Nay more, If any. born at £phesHS, 
Be seen at any Syracusan marts and fairs, 
Again, If any Syracusan born. 
Come to the bay of Epkesus he dies, 
Uis goods conjiscate to the duke's dispose ; 
Unless a thousand marls be levied, 
To quit the penalty, and to 7'anso)n ?iim." 

TiiE offence which ^geon had committed, and 
the penalty which he had incurred, are pointed OMt 
with a minuteness, by which the poet doubtless in- 
tended to convey his sense of the gross injustice of 
such enactments. In ' The Taming of the Shrew,' 
written most probably about the same period as 
'The Comedy of Errors,' the jealousies of com- 
mercial 8t;ites, exhibiting themselves in violent 
decrees and impracticable regulations, are also de- 
picted by the same powerful hand : — 

" Tra. What countryman, I pray ? 

Ped. Of Mantua. 

Tra. Of Mantua, sir? — marry, God forbid 1 
And come to Padua, careless of your life? 

Ped. My life, sir? how, I pray? for that goes hard. 

Tra. 'T is death for any one in Manttia 
To come to Padua; know you not the cause f 
Your ships are staid at Venice ; and the duke 
For private quarrel 'twixt your duke and him. 
Hath publi&h'd and proclaim'd it openly." 

At the commencement of the reign of Elizabeth, 
the just principles of foreign commerce were as- 
serted in a very remarkable manner in the pre- 
amble to a statute (1 Eliz. c. 13) : "Other foreign 
princes, finding themselves aggrieved with the .said 
several acta" — (statutes prohibiting the export or 
import of merchandise by English subjects in any 
but English ships) — "as thinking that the same 
were made to the hurt and prejudice of their 

country and navy, have made like penal lawb 
against such as should ship out of their coinitries 
in any other vessels than of their several countries 
and dominions ; by reason whereof there hath not 
only grown great displeasure between the foreign 
princes and the kings of this realm, but also the 
merchants have been sore grieved and endamaged." 
The inevitable consequences of commercial jealou- 
sies between rival states — the retaliations that 
invariably attend these "narrow and malignant 
politics," as Hume forcibly expresses it— are here 
clearly set forth. But in five or six yeiirs after- 
wards we had acts '•' for setting her Majesty's people 
on work," forbidding the importation of foreign 
wares ready wrought, "to the intent that her 
Highness's subjects might be employed in makiug 
thereof." These laws were directed against the 
productions of the Xetherlands ; and they were 
immediately followed by counter-proclamations, 
forbidding the carrying into England of any matter 
or thing out of which the same wares might be 
made ; and prohibiting the importation in the Low 
Countries of all English manufactures, under pain 
of confiscation. Under these laws, the English 
merchants were driven from town to town — from 
Antwerp to Embden, from Embden to Hamburgh ; 
their ships seized, their goods confiscated. Re- 
taliation of course followed, with all the com- 
plicated injuries of violence begetting violence. 
The instinctive wisdom of our poet must have seen 
the folly and wickedness of such proceedings ; and 
we believe that these passages are intended to 
mark his sense of them. The same brute force, 
which would confiscate the goods and burn the 
ships of the merchant, would put the merchant 
himself to death, under another state of society. 
Ho has stigmatised the principle of commercial 
jealousy by carrying out its consequences under 
an uncoustraine.l despotism. 

Co:fvxiE5. Vor. I. o 



[Remains of Gate at Epliesus.j 


SCENE l.—A imblic Place. 
Enter Adelus'a and Luciana. 

Adr. Neither my husband^ nor the slave re- 
turn' d. 
That in such haste I sent to seek his master ! 
Sure, Luciana, it is two o'clock. 
Luc. PerhapSj some merchant hath invited 
And from the mart lie's somewhere gone to 

Good sister, let us dine, and never fret : 
A man is master of his liberty : 
Time is their master ; and, when they sec time. 
They '11 go, or come : If so, be patient, sister. 
Adr. Why should their liberty than ours be 

more ? 
Luc. Because their business still lies out o' 

Adr. Look, wheu I seiTe him so, he takes it 

Luc. O, know, he is the bridle of your will. 
Adr. There 's mne but asses will be bridled so. 

Luc. Why, headstrong liberty is lash'd with 
There's nothing situate under heaven's eye 
But hatli his bound, in earth, in sea, in sky : 
The beasts, the fishes, and the winged fowls. 
Are their males' subjects, and at their controls : 
Men, more divine, the masters of all these. 
Lords of the wide world, and wild watery seas. 
Indued with intellectual sense and souls. 
Of more pre-eminence than fish and fowls. 
Arc masters to their females, and their lords : 
Then let your \Aill attend on their accords. 

Adr. This servitude makes you to keep unwed. 

Luc. Not this, but trou})les of the marriage- 

Adr. But were you wedded you would bear 
some swav. 

■■> ///. This is the reading of the second folio, whloh is 
necessary for the rhyme. The original has ihus. 

t) Lash'd wilh woe. — A lace, a leash, a lalch, a lash, is each 
a form of expressing what binds or fastens; and lhu8 
"headstrong liberty," and "woe," are bound together, — 
are inseparable. 

Act 11.] 


[SCSN< I. 

Luc. Ere I learu love, I '11 practise to obey. 

A'lr. llow if your husband start some other 
where ? ' 

Luc. Till he come lioiiic ajrain, 1 wuulil for- 

Adr. Patience, uomov'il, no marvel though 
she pause ; 
They can be lucck, that have no other cause. 
A wretched soul, bruis'd with adversity, 
We bid be quiit wheu we hear it cry ; 
But were we burdcu'd with like weight of pain, 
As much, or more, we should ourselves complain : 
So thou, that hast uo unkind mate to grieve thee. 
With urging helpless patience woidd relieve me : 
But, if ihuu live to se*; like right bereft, 
Tliis fool-begg'd patience '' iu thee will be left. 

Luc. Well, I will marry one day, but to try ; — 
Here comes your man, now is your husband nigh. 

Enter Ukomio of Ephesus. 

Adr. Say, b your tardy master now at liand ? 

Dro. E. Nay, he is at two hands with me, 
and that my two ears can witness. 

Adr. Say, didst thou speak with him ? know'st 
thou liis mind 'i 

Dro. E. Ay, ay, he told his mind upon mine 
car. Bcshrew lus hand, I scarce could under- 
stand it. 

Luc. Spake he so doubtfully thou conldst not 
feel his meaning ? 

Dro. E. Nay, he struck so plainly I could too 
well feel his blows ; and withal so doubtfullv 
that I could scarce tinderstand them." 

Adr. But say, I prithee, is he coming home ? 
It seems he haih great care to please his wife. 

Dro. E. ^V'hy, mistress, sure my master is 

Adr. Ilom-inad, thou villain? 

Dro. E. I mean not cuckold mad ; but, sure, 
he 's stark mad : 
Wlien I desir'd him to come home to dinner, 
lie askrd mc for a thousand marks in pokl : 




Pandue lAwt, book ti. v. 626.) 



' <1, OS ill 

..' \Vc 

but we 

ind other- 

furc have no 

fiHjl " for 

r 'sLoit, 



.. 1 in- 

ttiL> fuol, hit bruther, 

I eitatp, that I may bci; 

trouble with you both." 

• them \Vc have the 

'V - •' taff 

. - ,Scc 

' 'T is dinner-time,' quoth I ; * Mv gold,' quoth 

' Vour meat doth burn,' quoth I; 'My gold,' 

quoth he ; 
'Will yuu come home?' quoth I; 'My gold,' 

([uoth he : 
' Where is the thousand marks i gave thee, 

vilhiin ?' 
'The pig,' quoth I, 'is burn'd;' *My gold,' 

quoth he : 
'My mistress, sir,' quotli I. ' Ihmg up thy 

mistress ; 
I know not thy mistress; out on thy mistress !' 
Liic. Quoth who ? 
Dro. E. Quoth my master: 
'I know,' quoth he, *no house, uo wife, no 

mistress ;' 
So that my errand, due unto my tongue, 
I thank him, I bare home upon my shoulders ; 
For, in conclusion, he did beat mc there. 

Adr. Go back again, thou slave, and fetch 

him home. 
Dro. E. Go back again, and be new beaten 

home ? 
For God's sake send some other messenger. 
Adr. Back, slave, or I will break thy pate 

Dro. E. And he will bless that cross with 

other beating : 
Between you I shall have a holy head- 

Adr. llenee, prating peasant ; fetch thy 

master home. 
Dro. E. Am 1 so round with you, as you 

with me, 
That like a football you do spuni me thus ? ' 
You spurn me hence, and he will spurn mc 

hither : 
If I last in this service you must case mc iu 

leather. [^Exit. 

Luc. Fye, how impatience lourcth iu your 

face ! 
Adr. His company must do hb minions grace. 
Whilst 1 at home starve for a merry look. 
Ilath homely Jige the alluring beauty took 
From m> poor check ? then he hath wasted it : 
Arc my discourses dull P barren my wit ? 
If voluble and sharp discourse be marr'd, 
Unkindness blunts it, more than marble hard. 
Do their gay vestments his aflectious bait i' 
That 's not my fault, he 's master of my state : 
What ruins arc in me that can be found 
By him not ruin'd ? then is he the ground 

a To be round with any one is to l>c pKiin-tpokcn ; an in 
Hamlet: " Let her be round with hlro." Dronilo uiet thr 
word in a double lente, when he alludei to the foot-ball. 


Act II.] 


[ScENt H. 

Of my defeatui-cs : '"^ My decayed fair 

A suiiny look of his would soon repaii- : 

But, too ujiruly deer, lie breaks the pale, 

And feeds from home : poor I am but his stale.'' 

Luc. Self-harmiug jealousy! — fye, beat it 

yidr. Uufecling fools can with such wrongs 
I know his eye doth homage otherwhere ; 
Or else, what lets it but he would be here ? 
Sister, you know he promis'd me a chain ; — • 
\Vould that alone alone he would detain/' 
So he would keep fair quarter with his bed ! 
I see, the jewel best enamelled 
AV'ill lose his beauty ; and though gold 'bides still, 
That others touch, yet often touching will'' 
^\^car gold ; and so no man that hath a name, 
But falsehood and corruption doth it shame* 
Since that my beauty cannot please his eye, 
I '11 weep what 's left away, and weeping die. 

Luc. How many fond fools serve mad jea- 
lousy ! [Exeunt. 

SCENE 11.— The same. 
Enter Antipholus of Syracuse. 
Ant. S. The gold I gave to Dromio is laid up 
Safe at the Centaur ; and the heedful slave 
Is wander'd forih, in care to seek me out. 
By computation, aud mine host's report, 
I could not speak with Dromio, since at first 
1 sent him from the mart : See, here he comes. 

Enter Dkomio of Syracuse. 

IIow now, sir ? is your merry humour alter'd ? 
As you love strokes, so jest with mc again. 
You know no Centaur ? you rcceiv'd no gold ? 

a Defeatures. Adriana asserts tliat )ier defeatures, lier 
decayed fair — fair being used as a nnun for beauty, and 
defeatures for the cliange in her features for the worse- 
have been caused by lier husband's neglect. In Othello we 
have "defeat thy favours," meaning disfigure thy coun- 
^ 5<a/e is stalking-horse ; thus, in Ben Jonson's Catiline — 
"dull, stupid Lentulus, 
My stale, with whom I stalk." 
c In the first folio we liave— 

" Would that alone a loue he would detain." 
The obvious error, says Ivlalone, was corrected i.n the second 
folio. Mr. Dyce has pointed out that the repetition of alone 
has a precedent in Lucrece : — 

" Uut I alone, alone must sit and pine." 
This emphasises the sentiment, but here the second alone 
peri)lexes thf sense. 

<! That others touch. The Cambridge editors ingeniously 
sugnest " the letter's touch." 

e This passage has been altered by Pope, Warburton, and 
Steevens, from the original; and it is so impossible to gain 
a tolerable reading witljout changing the text, that we leave 
it as it is commonly received. In the first folio the reading 
is — 

" I see the jewel best enamelled 
Will lose his beauty; yet the gold bides still 
That others touch ; and often toucjiing will 
Where gold; and no man, that hatli a name, 
liy falsehood and corruption doth it shame." 


Your mistress sent to have me home to dinner ? 
My house was at the Phoenix ? Wast thou mad. 
That thus so madly thou didst answer me ? 
Dro. S. "What answer, sir ? when spake I such 

a word ? 
Ajtt. S. Even now, even here, not half an 

hour since. 
Dro. S. I did not see you since you sent me 
Home to the Centaur, with the gold you gave 
Ant. S. Villain, thou didst deny the gold's 
Aud told'st mc of a mistress, and a dinner; 
For which, I hope, thou felt'st I was displeas'd. 
Dro. S. I am glad to see you in this merry 
vein : 
Wliat means this jest ? I pray you, master, tell 
Aiit. S. Yea, dost thou jeer, and flout me in 
the teeth ? 
Thiuk'st thou I jest ? Hold, take thou that, and 
that. \Beatwg him. 

Dro. S. Hold, sir, for God's sake : now your 
jest is earnest: 
Upon what bargain do you give it me ? 

Ant. S. Because that I familiarly sometimes 
Do use you for my fool, and chat with you, 
Your saueiness will jest upon my love, 
And make a common of my serious hours.^ 
When the sun shines let foolish gnats make sport, 
But creep in crannies when he hides his beams. 
If you will jest with me know my aspect. 
And fashion your demeanour to ray looks. 
Or I will beat this method in your sconce. 

Dro. S. Sconce, call you it? so you would 
leave battei'ing, I had rather liave it a head : an 
you use these blows long, I must get a sconce 
for my head, and insconee it'' too ; or else I shall 
seek my wit in my shoulders. But, I pray sir, 
why am I beaten ? 
Ant. S. Dost thou not know ? 
Dro. S. Nothing, sir ; but that I am beaten. 
Ant. S. Shall I tell you why ? 
Dro. S. Ay, sir, and wherefore ; for, they 
say, every why hath a wherefore. 

Ant. S. Why, first,^for flouting me ; aud 
tlien, wherefore, — 
For urging it the second time to mc. 

Dro. S. Was there ever any man thus beaten 
out of season ? 

" The" serious hours" of Antipholus are ]ns privatehovtrs : 
the " saueiness" of Dromio intrudes upon those hours, .and 
deprives his master of his exclusive possession of them, — 
makes them " a common " property. 

^ Insconee j<— defend it — fortify it. 

Act ir.] 


[ScEKE ;i. 

When, in the why, and the wherefore, is neither 

rhyme nor reason ? — 
Well, sir, I thank you. 

-////. S. Thank me, sir ? for what ? 

Dro. S. Marry, sir, for this something that 
you gave me for nothing. 

A/ii. S. I'll make you amends next, to give 
you nothing for sometliing. But, say, sir, is it 
dinner-time ? 

Dro. S. No, sir; I think the meat wants that 
I have. 

J/if. S. In good time, sir, wliat 's that ? 

Dro. S. Basting. 

J/if. S. A\'ell, sir, then 't will be dry. 

Dro. S. If it be, sir, I pray you eat none 
of it. 

JiiL S. Your reason ? 

Dro. S. Lest it make you choleric, and pur- 
chase me another dry basting. 

A/if. S. Well, sir, learn to jest in good time. 
There's a time for all things. 

Dro. S. I durst have denied that, before yon 
were so choleric. 

Jni. S. By what rule, sir ? 

Dro. S. Marry, sir, by a ride as plain as the 
plain bald pate of father Time himself. 

Jilt. S. Let 's hear it. 

Dro. S. There 's no time for a man to recover 
his hair, that grows bald by nature. 

J/il. S. May he not do it by fine and reco- 



Dro. S. Yes, to pay a fine for a periwig,'' and 
recover the lost hair of another man. 

J»i. S. Why is Time such a niggard of hair, 
being, as it is, so plentiful an excrement ? 

Dro. S. Because it is a blessing that he be- 
stows on beasts : and what he hath scanted men 
in hair, he hath given them in wit. 

Jiif. S. Why, but there 's many a man hath 
more hair than wit. 

Dro. S. Not a man of those but he hath the 
wit to lose his hair. 

Auf. S. Why, thou didst conclude hairy men 
plain dealers without wit. 

Dro. S. The plainer dealer, the sooner lost : 
Yet he loseth it in a kind of jollity. 

Ant. S. For what reason ? 

Dro. S. For two ; and sound ones too. 

jinl. S. Nay, not sound, I pray you. 

Dro. S. Sure ones then. 

> In thij, as in ail Shakspere's early plays, and in his 
Poems, we have the professional jokes of the attorneys office 
in {Treat abundance. 

t> Periuig. This, the word in the folio, i« ordinarily printed 

Ant. S. Nay, not sure, in a thing falsing.' 

Dro. S. Certain ones then. 

Ant. S. Name them. 

Dro. S. The one, to save the money that he 
spends in tiring ;*• the other, that at dinner they 
shoiUd not drop in his porridge. 

Ant. S. You would all tiiis time liavc proved 
there is no time for all things. 

Dro. S. Marry, and did, sir; namely, iu no 
time to recover hair lost by nature. 

Ant. S. But your reason was not substantial, 
why there is no time to recover. 

Dro. S. Thus I mend it : Time himself is 
bald, and therefore, to the world's end, will have 
bald followers. 

Ant. S. I kncw't would be a bald conclusion : 
But soft ! who wafts us yonder ? 

Enter Adriana and Ldciaxa. 

Adr. Ay, ay, Antipholus, look strange, and 

frown ; 
Some other mistress hath thy sweet aspects : 
I am not Adriana, nor thy wife. 
The time was once, when thou unurg'd would'st 

That never words were music to thine ear. 
That never object pleasing iu thine eye. 
That never touch well-welcome to thy hand, 
That never meat sweet savour'd in thy taste, 
Unless I spake, or look'd, or touch'd, or can-'d 

to thee. 
How comes it now, my husband, oh, how 

comes it, 
That thou art then estranged from thyseK ? 
Tiiyself I call it, being strange to me. 
That, undividable, incorporate. 
Am better than thy dear self's better part. 
Ah, do not tear awav thvsclf from me ; 
For know, my love, as easy may'st thou fall' 
A drop of water in the breaking gulph, 
And take unmingled thence that drop again. 
Without addition or diminishing. 
As take from me thyself, and not me too. 
IIow dearly would it touch thee to the quick 
Should'st thou but hear I were licentious ? 

* Falsing — the participle of the obsolete verb to false. 
Shakspere uses this verb once, viz. in Cynibeline, Act ii., 
Scene iii : — 

" "T is gold 
Which buys admittance ; oft it doth: yea, and make" 
Diana's rangers /o/if themselves." 
In Chaucer (Rom. of the Rose), we have — 

" "Vhcy fallen ladies traitorously." 
The verb is commonly used by Spenser, — as 

"Thou/a/«d hast thy faith with pcr;Lr)." 
•> TiriH*;— attirins*. In the folio wchave trying, in oli\iuiis 
typographical error, corrected by Pope. .Mr. Collier, Mr, 
D}ce. and Mr. White, sugi;est trimming. 
c Fall is here used as a verb active. 


Act II.] 


[ScE:.fE II. 

And tliat this body, consecrate to thee, 
By ruffian lust should be contaminate ? 
Would'st thou not spit at me, and spurn at me, 
And hurl the name of husband in my face, 
And tear the stain'd skin of "^ my harlot brow. 
And from my false hand cut the wedding ring. 
And break it witli a deep-divorcing vow ? 
I know thou canst ; and therefore see thou 

do it. 
I ain possess'd with an adultei'ate blot ; 
My blood is mingled with the grime of lust :'' 
For, if we tv/o be one, and ihou play false, 
I do digest the poison of thy llesh. 
Being strumpeted by thy contagion. 
Keep then fair league and truce with thy true 

I live dis-stain'd,* thou, nndishonoured. 

Ant. S. Plead you to me, fair dame ? I know 
you not : 
In Ephesus I am but two hours old. 
As strange unto your town, as to your talk ; 
Wlio, every word by all my wit being scanu'd. 
Want wit in all one word to understaud. 

Luc. Tye, brother ! how the world is chang'd 
with you : 
When were you wont fo use my sister thus ? 
She sent for you by Dromio home to dinner. 

A7it. S. By Dromio ? 

Dro. S. By me ? 

Afh. By thee; and this tliou didst return 
from him, — 
That he did buffet thee, and, in his blows 
Denied my house for his, me for his wife. 

Ant. S. Did you converse, sir, with this gen- 
tlewoman ? 
What is the course and drift of your compact ? 

J)/-o. S. I, sir ? I never saw her till this 

Ant. S. Villain, thou liest ; for even her very 
Didst thou deliver to me on the mart. 

Dro. S. I never spake with her in all my life. 

Ant. S. How can she thus then call us by our 
Unless it be by inspiration ? 

Adr. How ill agrees it with your gravity. 
To counterfeit thus grossly with your slave. 
Abetting him to thwart me in my mood ? 
Be it my wrong, you are from me exempt,'' 
But wrong not that wrong with a more contempt. 

a 0/— SO the folio; Steevens unnecess.irily substituted ojE 

b Grime — suggested by Warburtoii instead of crime in tl\e 

c Dis-siained in the folio. 

il J'lluHon says the word here means separated. 
But surely Adriana intends to say that she must bear Ihc 
wrong ; that Antipholus, being her husband, is released, ac- 
quitted, exempt, from any consequences of this wrong. 


Come, I will fasten on this sleeve of thme : 
Thou art an elm, my husband, I, a vine;'' 
Whose weakness, married to thy stronger state, 
Makes rne with thy strength to communicate : 
If aught possess thee from me, it is dross. 
Usurping ivy, briar, or idle'' moss ; 
Who, all for want of pruning, with intrusion 
Infect thy sap, and live on thy confusion. 

Aiit. S. To me she speaks ; she moves me for 
her theme : 
What, was I married to her in my dream ? 
Or sleep I now, and think I hear all this ? 
What error chives our eyes and ears amiss ? 
Until I know this sure, uncertainly*^ 
I'll entertain the ofTerW fallacy. 

L^!C. Dromio, go bid the servants spread for 

Dro. S. O, for my beads ! I cross me for a 
'I'his is the fairy land ;^ — 0, .spite of spites ! 
We t alk with goblins, owls,® and elvish'' sprites; 
If we obey them not, this will ensue. 
They'll suck our breath, or pinch us black and blue. 

Znc. Why, prat'st thou to 'thyself, and an- 
swer'st not ? 
Dromio, thou drone, thou snail, thou slug, thou 

Dro. S. I am transformed, master, am not I ? 

Ant. S. I think thou art, in mind, and so am I. 

Dro. S. Nay, master, both iu mind, and in 
my shape. 

Ant. S. Thou hast thine own form. 

Dro. S. No, I am an ape. 

Luc. If thou art chang'd to aught, 't is to an ass. 

Dro. S. 'T is true ; she rides me, and I loug 
for grass. 

a When Milton uses this classical image, in Paradise Lost, 

" They led the vine 
Tp wed the elm ; she, spous'd, about him twines 
Her marriageable arms," 
the annotators of our great epic poet naturally give us the 
parallel passages in CatulUis, in Ovid, in Virgil, in Horace. 
Shakspere unquestionably iiad the image from the same 
sources. It appears to us that this line of Shakspere 
is neither a translation nor an imitation of any of the 
well-known classical passages ; but a transfusion of the 
spirit of the ancient poets by one who was familiar with 

b Idle — useless, fruitless, —as in "desarts idle." Anaddle 
egg is an idle egg. Shakspere ])lays upon the words in 
Troilus and Cressida: "If you love an addle egg as well 
as you love an idle liead, vou woiUd eat chickens i' the 

c Sure, uticertainty. — We adopt the reading of the Cam- 
bridge Editors. 

'I Offer'd — in the first folio, freed. 

<• Owls — Tlieobald changed owls to otqihes, upon the plea 
that owls ctnild not suck breath and pinch. Warburton 
maintains that the owl here is the slrix of the ancients — the 
destroyer of the cr.ndlcd infant — 

" Nocte volant, puerosque petunt nutricis egentes, 
Et vitiant cunis corpora rapta suis." 

Ovid. Fasti, lib. vi. 

f Eltish is wanting in the first folio, but is found in the 
second, misprinted "elves." 

Art III 


[Scr.vr. II. 

'T is SO, I am an ass ; else it could never be. 
But I should know her as well as she knows 

AJr. Come, come, no longer will I be a 

To put the finger in the eye and weep, 
Wlulst man, and master, laugh my woes to 

Come, sir, to dinner ; Dromio, keep the gate : — 
Husband, I '11 dine above with you to-d'iv, 
And siirive you of a thousand idle pranks : 
Sirrah, if any ask you for your master, 

Say, he dines forth, and let no creature outer. 
Come, sister :— Dromio, play the porter well. 

Jiif. S. Am I in earth, in heaven, or in hell ? 
Sleeping, or wtdiing ? mad, or well advis'd ? 
Known unto these, and to myself disguis'd ! 
I '11 say as they say, and perse ver so. 
And in this mist at all adveut'ires go. 

Dro. S. Master, shall I be porter at the gate ? 

.■f(fr. Ay ; and let none enter, lest I break 
yoiu* pate. 

Luc. Come, eome, Antipholus, wc dine loo 
late. IKrt'uiii. 



[Remain'! of Aqiied"ici nt EphcMis.] 



' Scene II. — " Tliis is the fairy land" 

I.v the first act we Lave the following description 
of the unlawful arts of Ephesus : — 

" They sriy tliis town is full of cozenage; 
As, nimble jugglers that deceive the eye, 
Dark-working sorcerers that change the mind, 
Soul-killing witches that deform the body, 
Disguised theaters, prating mountebanks, 
And many such like liberties of sin." 

It wa's ob.served by Capell that " the character 
given of Ephesus in thi.? place is the very same 
that it had with the ancients, which may pass for 

some note of the poet's learning." It was scarcely 
necessary, however, for Shakspere to search for 
this ancient character of Ephesus in more recondite 
sources than the most interesting narrative of St. 
Paul's visit to the city, given in the 19th chapter 
of the Acts of the Apostles. In the 13th verse we 
find mention of "certain of the vagabond Jews, 
exorcists;" and in the 19th verse we are told that 
" many of them also which used curious arts 
brought their books together, and burned them be- 
fore all men." The ancient proverbial term, Ephc- 
sian Letters, was used to express everj' kind of 
charm or spell. 


-— . _=^_',«r 




SCEXE \.— The same. 
Enter AxTiPiiOLUS of Ephesus, Dkomio of 


AhI. E. Good signior Angelo, you must ex- 
cuse us alL 
My wife is shrewish, when I keep not hours : 
Say, that I lingcr'd with you at your shop. 
To see the making of her carcanct,' 
And that to-morrow you will bring it home. 
But here's a villain, that would face inc down 
lie met me on the mart ; and that I beat him, 
And charg'd him with a thousand marks in gold ; 
And that I did deny my wife and house : 
Thou drunkard, thou, what didst thou mean by 
this ? 

» Carcnnt'. — a chun, nr necklicc. In Harrington's Orlan- 
do Furioio we haTc — 

" About hi» neck a f<v>»rt rich he ware." 

I)ro. E. Say what yon will, sir, but 1 kaow 
what I know : 
Tliat you beat me at the mart, I have your hand 

to show : 
If the skin were parchment, and the blows you 

gave were ink. 
Your own handwriting would lell you what I 
Aii(. E. I think thou art an ass. 
Dro. E. Marry, so it doth appear 

PiV the wrongs I suffer and the blows I bear. 
I should kick, being kiek'd; and, being at that 

You would keep from my heels, and beware of 
an ass. 
Ant. E. You are sad, signior Balthazar : 
Tray God, our cheer 
May answer my good will, and your good wel- 
come here. 


Act III.] 



Bal. I hold your dainties cheap, sir, and your 

welcome dear. 
Ani. B. 0, signior Balthazar, either at flesh 

or fish, 
A table full of welcome makes scarce one dainty 

Bal. Good meat, sir, is common; that every 

chvul affords. 
Ant. E. And welcome more common; for 

that 's nothing but words. 
Bal Small cheer, and great welcome, makes 

a merry feast. 
Ant. E. Ay, to a niggardly host, and more 

sparing guest. 
But though my cates be mean, take them in good 

part ; 
Better cheer may you have, but not with better 

But, soft; my door is lock'd. Go bid them let us in. 
Dro. B. Maud, Bridget, .Marian, Cicely, Gil- 
lian, Jen' ! 
I)ro. S. [JFiiliin.'] Mome,* malt-horse, capon, 

coxcomb, idiot, patch ! ^ 
Eitlier get thee from the door, or sit down at the 

hatch : 
Dost thou conjure for wenches, that thou call'st 

for such store. 
When one is one too many ? Go, get thee from 

the door. 
Dro. B. "What patch is made our porter ? 

my master stays in the street. 
T)ro. S. Let him walk from whence he came, 

lest he catch cold on 's feet. 
Ant. B. Who talks within there ? lio ! open 

the door. 
Dro. S. Right, sir, I '11 tell you when, an 

you '11 tell me wherefore. 
Ant. B. Wherefore ? for my dinner ; I have 

not din'd to-day. 
Dro. S. Nor to-day here you must not ; 

come again when you may. 
Ant. E. What art thou, that keep'st me out 

from the house I owe ? 
Bro. S. The porter for this time, sir, and my 

name is Dromio. 
Dro. E. O villain, thou hast stolen both mine 

office and my name ; 
The one ne'er got me credit, the other mickle 


a Mome. It is dinicuU to attach a prcc se meaning l.-j 
n/tme. Some say it is one who phiys in a mummery, a 
buffoon. The derivation is French, and a modern French 
Dictionary explains it as a young thieT, and says it is ap- 
plied to the gamins of Paris. 

b Palch is a pretender, a deceitful fellow, one who is 
palched up. Palch, as applied to a fool, has only a second- 
ary meaning. Shakspere uses patchrrn in the sense of 
roguery : " Here is such patchery, such juggling, and such 
knavery." — (Troilus and Cretsida.) 

If fhou liad'st been Dromio to-day in my place, 
Thou wouldst have chang'd tliy face for a name, 

or thy name for an ass. 
Luce. [7Fit////«.]"Wliat a coil is there ! Dromio, 

who are those at the gate ? 
Dro. B. Let my master in. Luce. 
Luce. Faith no ; he comes 

too late ; 
And so tell your master. 

Dro. B. Lord, I must laugh ; — 

Have at you with a proverb. — Shall I set in my 

Luce. Have at you with another : that 's, — 

When ? can you tell ? 
Dro. S. If thy name be called Luce, Luce, 

thou hast answer'd him well. 
Aiit. B. Do you hear, you minion ? you '11 let 

us in, I hope ? 
IjHCc. I thought to have ask'd you. 
Dro. S. And you said, no. 

Dro. E. So, come, help ; well struck ; there 

was blow for blow. 
Ant. B. Thou baggage, let me in. 
Ijiice. Can you tell for whose sake. 

Dro. B. Master, knock the door hard. 
Jaicc. Let him knock till it ake. 

Ant. B. You 'U cry for this, minion, if I beat 

the door down. 
Luce. What needs aU that, and a pair of 

stocks in the town ? 
Adr. \_TFit/iin.] Who is that at the door, that 
keeps all this noise ? 

Dro. S. By my troth your town is troubled 

with uniTily boys. 
Ant. B. Are you tliere, wife ? you might have 

come before. 
Adr. Your wife, sir knave ! go, get you from 

the door. 
Dro. B. If you M'cnt in pain, master, this 

knave would go sore. 
Angf. Here is neither cheer, sir, nor welcome ; 

we would fain have either. 
/ud. In debating which was best, we shall 

part with neither."' 
Dro. E. They stand at the door, master; bid 

them welcome hitlior. 
Ant. B. There is something in the wind, that 

we cannot get in. 
Dro. E. You would say so, master, if your 

garments were thin. 
Your cake here is warm within ; you stand here 

in the cold : 
It would make a man mad as a buck to be so 

bought and sold. 

•■> Pari ujjY'j— depart with. 

Act 111] 



Ant. E. Go, fetcli me soiriething, I '11 break 

ope the gate. 
Dro. S. Bi-cak any breaking here, and I '11 

brc.ik your knave's pate. 
Dro. E. A man may break a word with you, 
sir ; and words are but wind. 
Ay, and break it in your face, so he break it not 
Dro. S. It seems, thou wantcst breaking; Out 

upon thee, hind ! 
Dro. E. Here 's too mueh, out upon thee ! I 

pray thee, let me in. 
Dro. S. Ay, wlion fowls have no feathers, and 

fish have no fm. 
Ant. E. Well, I '11 break in ; Go, borrow me 

a crow. 
Dro. E. A crow without feather; master, 
mean you so ? 
For a fish without a fin, there 's a fowl without a 

If a crow help us in, sirrah, we '11 pluck a crow 
Ant. E. Go, get thee gone, fetch me an iron 

Bal. Have patience, sir, let it not be so. 
Herein you war against your reputation. 
And draw within the compass of suspect 
The unviolated honour of your wife. 
Once this,* — Your long experience of her wisdom, 
Her sober virtue, years, and modesty. 
Plead on her part some cause to you unknown ; 
And doubt not, sir, but she will well excuse 
AMiy at this time the doors are made against you.'' 
Be nil' d by me ; depart in patience, 
.Vnd let us to the Tiger all to dinner : 
And, about evening, come yourself alone. 
To know the reason of this strange restraint. 
If by strong hand you oft'cr to break in. 
Now in the stirring passage of the day, 
A vulgar comment will be made of it ; 
And that supposed by the common rout 
Against your yet ungalled estimation. 
That may with foul intntsion enter in. 
And dwell upon your grave when you arc dead : 
For slander lives upon succession ; 
For ever housed, where it gets possession. 
Ant. E. Yon have prevail'd. I will depart 
in quiet, 
And, in despite of mirth, mean to be merry. 
I know a wench of excellent discourse ; 
Pretty and witty ; wild, and, yet too, gentle ; — 
There will we dine : this woman that I mean. 
My wife (but, I protest, without desert,) 

• Once thi*—<met for all. 

'' To mate the door is still a provincial expression. 

Hath oftentimes upbi-aidcd me withal ; 

To her will we to dinner. Get you home. 

And fetch the chain ; by this, I know, 't is made : 

Bring it, I pray you, to the Porpeutinc;' 

For there 's the house ; that chain w ill I bestow 

(Be it for nothing but to spite my wife,) 

Upon mine hostess there : good sir, make haste : 

Since mine own doors refuse to entertain me, 

I '11 knock elsewhere, to see if they '11 disdain me. 

Aii^. 1 '11 meet you at that place, some hour 

A>it. E. Do so. Tliis jest shall cost me some 
expencc. [Exeunt. 

SCENE l\.— The same. 
Enter ItVCiKTHh. and Antipholcs o/" Syracuse. 

Luc. And may it be that you have quite forgot 

A husband's office ? shall, Antipholus, 
Even in the spring of love, thy love-springs rot? 

Shall love, in building, grow so ruinous?'' 
If you did wed my sister for her wealth. 

Then, for her wealth's sake, use her with more 
kindness : 
Or, if you like elsewhere, do it by stealth ; 

MuiBe your false love with some show of 
blindness : 
Let not my sister read it in your eye ; 

Be not thy tongue thy own shame's orator ; 
Look sweet, speak fair, become disloyalty ; 

Apparel vice like virtue's harbinger: 
Bear a fair presence, thougli your heart be 
taiuted ; 

Teach sin tlie carriage of a holy saint ; 
Be secret-false : What need she be acquainted ? 

What simple thief brags of his own attaint ? 
'Tis double wrong to truant with your bed, 

And let her read it in thy looks at board : 
Shame hath a bastard fame, well managed ; 

111 deeds are doubled with an evil word. 
Alas, poor women ! make us but believe, 

Being compact of credit,' that you love us ; 
Tliough others have the arm, show us the sleeve ; 

Wc in your motion turn, and you may move us. 

» Porpenline. This word, which has the same meaninf; 
t.. Porcupine, is invariably used thrnu(;hout tlie early 
editions of Shakspere It was no doubt tiic familiar word 
In Sh.ikspere's time, and ought not to be changed. 

b Jiuinate, instead of tuinnut, is the reading of the folio. 
To make a rhyme to ruinate, Theobald inserted the word 
hale, in the second line — "Shall, Antipholus, hatr," — shall 
hue rot thy love-springs ? The correction of ruinate to 
ruinoui, suggested by Sicevens, though not adopted by him, 
is much more satisfactory. It is to be observed that Anli- 
]dio/u< is tlie prev.iiling orthography of the folio, though in 
.»onie places we have Antipho/M. iorc-jprin^iare the early 
ihooU of love, as in the Venus and .'\donis — 

" This canker that eats up love's tender ipring." 

e Compact of credit — credulous. 


Act HI.] 


ISrENE 11. 

Then, gentle brother, get you in again ; 

Comfort my sister, cheer her, call her wife : 
'T is holy sport, to be a little vain,* 

When the sweet breatli of flatteiy conquers 
A)it. S. Sweet mistress, (wliat your name is else, 
I know not, 
Nor by what wonder you do hit of mine,) 
Less, in your knowledge, and your grace, you 
show not, 
Than our earth's wonder ; more than carili 
Teach me, dear creature, how to think and speak ; 

Lay open to my eartliy gross conceit, 
Smothcr'd in errors, feeble, shallow, weak. 

The folded meaning of your words' deceit. 
Against my soul's pure truth why labour you. 

To make it wander in an unknown field ? 
Are you a god ? would you create me new ? 
Transform me then, and to your power I'll 
But if that I am I, then well I know, 

Your weeping sister is no wife of mine. 
Nor to her bed no homage do I owe ; 

Far more, far more, to you do I decline. 
O, train me not, sweet mermaid, with thy note. 

To drown me in thy sister flood of tears ; 
Sing, siren, for thyself, and I will dote : 

Spread o'er the silver waves thy golden hairs, 
And, as a bed,'' I'll take thee and there lie ; 

And, in that glorious supposition, think 
He gains by death, that hath such means io die : — 
Let love," being light, be drowned if she sink ! 
Luc. What, are you mad, that you do reason 

ytiil. S. Not mad, but mated ; "^ how, I do not 

Lnc. It is a fault that springeth from your eye. 
Ant. S. For gazing on your beams, fair sun, 

being by. 
Luc. Gaze where you should, and that will 

clear your sight. 
Ant. S. As good to wink, sweet love, as look 

on night. 
Luc. Why call you me love ? call my sister so. 
Ant. S. Thy sister's sister. 

» ToiH— Johnson interprets this Uijhl nf tongue. 

b Bcd—\he first folio reads bud. The second folio bed 
"The golden hairs "which are "spread o'er the siler.t 
waves" will form the bed of the lover. Mr. Dyce would 
read — 

"And as a bride I'll take thee." 

c Love is here used as the queen of love. In the Venus 
and Adonis, Venus, speaking of herself, says — 

" Love is a spirit, all compact with fire, 
Not gross to sink, hut lifjlit, and will aspire." 

^ To mate — to nmale — is to make senseless, — to stupify 
cs in a dream. Mcetan (A. S.) ii to dream. 


Luc. That 's my sister. 

Ant. S. No ; 

It is thyself, mine own self's better part ; 
Mine eye's clear eye, my dear heart's dearer 

heart ; 
My food, my fortune, and my sweet hope's aim, 
Mj sole earth's heaven, and my heaven's claim. 

L?ic. All this my sister is, or else should be. 

Aj/t. S. Call thyself sister, sweet, for I aim thee ; 
Thee will I love, and with thee lead my life ; 
Thou hast no husband yet, nor I no wife : 
Give me thy hand. 

Lnc. 0, soft, sir, hold you still ; 

I '11 fetch my sister, to get her good will. 

[Evit Luc. 

Enter fror.i the house f/ANTiriiOLUS o/Ephesus, 
DiiOMio ry Syracuse. 

Jnf. S. Why, how now, Dromio ? where 
run'st thou so fast ? 

Dro. S. Do you know me, sir ? am T Dromio ? 
am I your man? am I myself? 

ylnt. S. Thou art Dromio, thou art my man, 
thou art thyself. 

Dj-o. S. I am au ass, I am a woman's man, 
and besides myself. 

Afit. S. What woman's man ? and how be- 
sides thyself ? 

Bro. S. Marry, sir, besides myself, I am due 
to a woman; one that claims me, one that haunts 
me, one that will liave me. 

Ant. S. What claim lays she to thee ? 

Dro. S. Marry, sir, siieh claim as you would 
lay to your horse ; and she would have me as a 
beast : not that, I being a beast, slic would have 
me ; but that she, being a very beastly creature, 
lays claim to me. 

'A»t.S. What is she? 

Era. S. A very reverent Ijody ; ay, such a one 
as a man may not speak of, without he say, sir 
reverence : '^ I have but lean luck in the match, 
and yet is she a wondrous fat marriage. 

Ant. S. How dost thou meau a fat mar- 
riage ? 

7)ro. S. Marry, sir, she 's the kitchen-wench, 
aud all grease ; and I know not what use to put 
her to, but to make a lamp of her, and run from 
her by her owni liglit. I warrant, her rags, and 
the tallow in them, will burn a Poland winter : 
if she lives tiU doomsday, she '11 burn a week 
longer than the whole world. 

Ant. S. What complexion is she of? 

Ero. S. Swart, like my shoe, but her face no- 

° Sec Illustrations to Romeo and Juliet, Act i. When 
anything ofTensivc was sjioken of, this form of apology 
was used 

Act Ml] 


[ScE>^t. 11. 

thing like so clean kept. For why ? she sweats ; 
a man may go over siioes iu the grime of it. 

Jitt. S. That 's a fault th:it water will niciul. 

Dro. S. Ko, sir, 't is iu grain ; Koali's Hood 
could not do it. 

Aiit. S. "What 's her name ? 

Dro. i). I^ell, sir; — but her name and three 
quarters, that is an cU and three quarters, will 
not measure her from hip to hip. 

A/ii. S. Then she bears some breadth ? 

Dio. S. No longer from head to foot, than 
from hip to hip ; she is spherical, like a globe. 
I could llnd out countries in her.' 

J/if. S. In \Yhat part of her body stands Ire- 
land ? 

I)ro. S. Marry, sir, in her buttocks. I found 
it out by the bogs. 

J,if. 6'. Where Scotland ? = 

I)ro. S. I found it by the barrenness ; haid, 
in the palm of the hand. 

Jiif. S. "Wlicre France ? 

Dro. S. In lier forehead ; armed and reverted, 
making war against her hair.^ 

J///. S. Where England ? 

Dro. S. I looked for the chalky cliffs, but I 
could find no whiteness in them : but I guess, 
it stood in her chin, by the salt rheum that ran 
between France and it. 

Mf. S. Where Spain ? 

Dro. S. Faith, I saw it not ; but I felt it, hot 
in her breath. 

AiiL S. Where America, tlie Indies?* 

Dro. S. 0, sir, upon her nose, all o'er em- 
bellished with rubies, carbuncles, sapphires, de- 
clining their rich aspect to the hot breath of 
Spain ; who sent whole armadas of carracks to 
be ballast at her nose. 

Ant. S. Where stood Belgia, the Nether- 
lands ? 

Dro. S. O, sir, I did not look so low. To 
conclude, this drudge, or diviner, laid claim to 
me; called me Dromio; swore, I was assured' 
to her ; told mc what privy marks I bad about 
me, as the mark of my shoulder, the mole in my 
nock, the great wart on my left arm, that 1, 
amazed, ran from her as a witch : 
And, I tliiuk, if my breast had not been made 

of faith, and my heart of steel. 
She had transform'd me to a curtail-dog, and 
made nie turn i' the wheel.'' 

» A. 

b W 


"nr two lines as verse. The dofrgrcl, 
:«, contains a superabund- 
■ tic doubt that Dromio's 

.1.11 iii.x . was intended to conclude 

cmphaticallsr with rhyme. 

A/ii. S. Go, hie thee presently, post to the 

road ; 
And if the wind blow any way from shore, 
I will not harbour in this town to-night. 
If any bark put forth, come to the mart, 
W^here I will walk, till thou return to me. 
If every one knows us, and we know none, 
'Tis time, I tiiink, to trudge, pack, and be 

Div. ^. As from a bear a niuu woidil run for 

So lly I from her that woidd be my wife. 

A/iL S. There 's none but witches do inhabit 

here ; 
And therefore 't is high time that 1 were hence. 
She, tiiat doth call mc husband, even my soul 
Doth for a wife abhor : but iier fair sister, 
Posscss'd with such a gentle sovereign grace. 
Of such enchanting presence and discourse. 
Hath almost made me traitor to myself. 
But, lest myself be guilty to" self-wrong, 
I'll stop mine ears against the mermaid's 

L'/iler Angelo 

A»//. Master Antipholus ? 
Ant. S. Ay, that 's my name. 
A/It/. I know it well, sir. Lo, here is the 
chain ; 
I thought to have ta'en you at the Porpeutine : 
The chain iinfinish'd made mc stay thus 
A/if. S. AViiat is your will that I should do witn 

this ? 
A/i//. W' hat please yourself, sir ; I have made 

it for you. 
An/.S. Made it for mc, sir! I bespoke it 

Aii^. Not once, nor twice, but twenty times 
you have : 
Go iiome with it, and please your wife withal ; 
And soon at suppcr-tinie I'll visit you. 
And then receive my money for the chain. 
Afif. S. I pray you, sir, receive the money 
For fear you ne'er see chain, nor money more. 
All/;. You are a merry man, sir; fare you 
well. U'^if- 

Alii. S. What I should thiiJc of this, I cannot 
tell : 

• Cuilly ^■ -'1 ■< ./■, — was ihc piirascology of Shakipcrc*« 


Act III.] 


[Scene U. 

But this I think, there 's uo man is so vain 
That would refuse so fair an offer'd chain. 
I see, a man liere needs not live by sliifts, 
Wlien iu the streets he meets such golden j^it'ts. 

I '11 to the mart, and there for Dromio stay; 
If any ship put out then straight away. 

^i.:K. sir^- 

ILLl S'^UATI0^'8 or ACT 111. 

' Scene II. — " / could jlud out countries in her." 
Shakspere most probably had tho idea from 
Rabelais, in the passage where Friar Johu maps 
out the head and chiu of Panurge (L. 3. c. 2S.) " Ta 
barbe par les distinctions da gris, dii blanc, du 
tannd, et du noir, me semble une mappe-monde. 
lleg-ardc ici. Voila Asio. Ici sont Tigris ct Eu- 
phrates. Voila Africque. Ici est la montaigue de 
la Lune. Veoistu les palus du Nil ? De^a est 
Europe. Veoistu Theleme ? Co touppet ici tout 
blanc, sont les monts Hyperbordes." 

» Scene II.—" Where Scotland}" 

In the ' Merchant of Venice,' where Portia de- 
scribes her suitors to Neri3s.% we have an allusion, 
— sarcastic although playful, — to the ancient con- 
tests of Scotland with England, and of the support 
which Fi-anco generally rendered to the weaker 
side : 

Ner. " What think you of the Scottish lord, his neigh- 
bour ? 

Por. That he hath a neighbourly charity in him ; for he 
borrowed a box of the ear of the Englishman, and swore 
he would pay him again, when he was able: I tliink the 
Frenchman became l\\s surety, and sealed under for another." 

The word Scottig7i, is found in the original quarto 
of this play, but in the folio of 1C2.3 it is changed 
to othei: Malono considers that the 'Merchant 
of Venice' being performed in the time of James, 
tho allu.sion to Scotland was suppre.ised by tho 
Master of the Revels ; but that the more ofi'eusive 

allusion to the " biirreuuess" of Scotland, in the 
passage before us being retained in tho original 
folio edition, is a proof that tho ' Comedy of Errors' 
was not revived after the accession of the Scottish 
monarch to the English throne. 

^ Scene II. — " Makinf/ u-ar ayainsl herhair." 

It seems to be pretty generally agreed that this 
passage is an allusion to the war of tho League. 
In the first folio we have the spelling licire, although 
in the second folio it was changed to hairc. Upon 
tho assassination of Henry III., in August, 1589, 
the great content commenced between his heir, 
Henry of Navarro, and the Leaguers, who ojiposed 
his succession. In 1591 Elizabeth sent an armed 
force to the assistance of Henry. If the supposi- 
tion that tliis allusion was meant by Shakspere be 
correct, the date of the play is pretty exactly de- 
termined ; for the war of the League was in effect 
concluded by Henry's renunciation of the Protest- 
ant ftiith in 1593. 

* Scene II. — " Wiere America, the Indies i" 

This is certainly one of the boldest anachro- 
nisms in Shakspere; foi-, although the period of the 
action of the 'Comedy of Errors' may include a 
range of four or five centuries, it must certainly 
be placed before the occupation of the city )>y 
the Mohammedans, and therefore some centuries 
before the discovery of America, 

,.^'- V E---. 

.,, ^^^-SS^^^^^^^i^^^^^^^"^^ 


rncinaiiis of the Gymnasium,] 


SCENE \.—The same. 

Enter a Mcrcbaut, Angelo, and an Officer. 

Mer. You know, siuce Pentecost tlic sum- is 
And since I have not much importun'd you. 
Nor now I had not, but that I am bound 
To Persia, and want gilders for my voyage : 
Therefore make present satisfaction, 
Or I 'li attach you by this officer. 

Anff. Even just the sum that I do owe to yon, 
Is growing to me" Ijy Antipliolus : 
And, in the instant that I met with you. 
He had of nie a chain ; at five o 'clock, 
I shall receive the money for the same : 
Pleaseth you walk with me down to his house, 
I will discharge my bond, and thank you too. 

Etder Antii'jiolus of Ephesus, and DiiOMio of 

Off". That labour may you save ; see where he 

Ant. E. While I go to the goldsmith's house, 
go thou 
And buy a rojjc's end ; that will 1 bestow 
Among my wife and her confederates, 
For locking mc out of my doors by day. 
But soft, I sec the goldsmith : — get thee gone ; 
Buy thou a rope, and bring it home to me. 

a Growing to me — accruing to me. 


Dro. E. I buy a thousand poind a year! I 
buy a rope ! \_Eait DiiOMio. 

ylnt. E. A man is well holp up that trusts to 
I promised your presence, and the chain ; 
But neither chain, nor goldsmith, came to me : 
Belike, you thought our love would last too long, 
If it were ehain'd together ; and therefore came 
An/j. Saving your merry humour, here's the 
How much your chain weighs to the utmost carat ; 
The fineness of the gold, and ehargeful fashion ; 
Which doth amount to three odd ducats more 
Than I stand deb ted to this gentleman : 
I pray you, see him presently discharg'd, 
For he is bound to sea, and stays but for it. 
Ant. E. I am not furnish'd with the present 
money ; 
Besides I have some business in the town : 
Good signior, take the stranger to my house, 
And with you take the chain, and bid my wife 
Disburse the sum on the receipt thereof ; 
Perchance, I will be there'' as soon as you. 
Aug. Then you will bring the chain to her 

yourself ? 
Anl. E. No ; bear it with you, lest I come 
not time enough. 

■■> I will, iiLiitcad of / shall, is a Scotticism, says Pouce 
(an Knglishmaii); it is an Irishism, says Reed (a Scots- 
man) ; and an ancient Anglicism, says Malone (an Irish- 

Ait IV.] 


[SciNr. 11 

Aug. Well, sir, I will : Have you the cliain 

about YOU ? 
Ant. E. Au if I have not, sir, I hope you 
have ; 
Or else you may return without your money. 
Aug. Nay, eome, I pray you, sir, give me the 
chain ; 
Both wind and tide slays for this gentleman, 
And I, to blame, have held him here too long. 
Ant. E. Good lord, yon use this dalliauec to 
Your breach of promise to the Porpeutine : 
I should have chid you for not bringing it. 
But, like a shrew, you first begin to brawl. 
Mer. The hour steals on; 1 pray you, sir, de- 
Aug. You hear, how he importunes me ; the 

chain — 
Jnt. E. Why, gi\c it to my wife, and fetch 

your money. 
Aug. Come, come, you know I gave it you 
even now ; 
Either send the chain, or send me by some token. 
Aiit. E. Fye ! now you run this humour out 
of breath : 
Come, where 's the chain ? I pray you, let me 
see it. 
Mer. My business camiot brook this dalliance : 
Good sir, say, whe'r you '11 answer me, or no ; 
If not, I '11 leave him to the officer. 
Aiit. E. I answer you ! What should I answer 

Aug. The money, that you owe me for the 

Ant. E. I owe you none, till I receive the 

Aug. You know, I gave it you half an hour 

Ant. E. You gave me none ; you wrong me 

much to say so. 
Aug. You \vrong me more, sir, in denying it : 
Consider, how it stands upon my credit. 
Mer. Well, officer, arrest him at my suit. 
Off. I do ; and charge you in the duke 's name, 

to obey me. 
Aug. This touches me in reputation : — 
Either consent to pay this sura for me, 
Or I attach you by this officer. 

Ant. E. Consent to pay thee that I never had ! 
Arrest me, foolish fellow, if thou dar'st. 

Ang. Here is thy fee ; arrest him, officer. 
I would not spare my brother in this case, 
If he should scorn me so ai)parcutly. 

OJf. 1 do arrest you, sir ; you hear the suit. 
Ant. E. I do obey thee, till I give thee bail : 
Comedies —Vol. I, R 

But, sirrah, you shall buy the sport as dear 
As all the metal in yom- shop will answer. 

Ang. Sir, sir, I shall have law in Ephesus, 
To your notorious shame, I doubt it not. 

Enttr DaoMio of Syracuse. 

iJro. S. Master, there is a bark of Epidannium, 
That stays but till her owner comes aboard. 
And then, sir, she bears away: our fraughtage, sir, 
I have convey'd aboard ; and I have bought 
The oil, till' balsanium, and aqua-vittc. 
The ship is in her trim ; the merry wind 
Blows fair from land : they stay for nought at 

But for their owner, master, and yourself. 
Ant. E. How now ! a madman ? Why thou 
peevish* sheep, 
What ship of Epidamnum stays for me P 
Dro. S. A ship you sent me to, to hire waft- 
Ant. E. Thou drunken slave, I sent thee for 
a rope ; 
And told thee to what purpose, and what end. 
Dro. S. You sent me, sir, for a rope's-end as 
soon : 
You sent me to the bay, sir, for a baik. 

Ant. E. I will debate this matter at more lei- 
And teach your ears to list me with more heed. 
To Adriana, villain, hie thee straight : 
Give her this key, and tell her, in the desk \ 

That 's cover'd o'er with Turkish tapestry. 
There is a piu'se of ducats ; let her scud it ; 
Tell her, I am arrested in the street. 
And that shall bail me : hie thee, slave : be gone. 
On, officer, to prison till it come. 

[Eveio/t ^Merchant, Angelo, Officer, 
and Ant. E. 
Dro. S. To Adriana ! that is where we din'd, 
Where Dowsabel did claim me for her xusband; 
She is too big, I hope, for nie to compass. 
Thither I must, although against my will. 
For servants must their masters' minds fulfil. 

SCENE IE— r>i^ mme. 
Enter Adriana and Luciana. 

AJr. Ah, Luciana, did he tempt thee so ? 
Might'st thou perceive austerely in his eye 
'i'liat he did i)lcad in earnest, yea, or no ? 

Look'd he or red, or pale ; or sad or merrily r 

* Piiiish — silly. Slieep and iliip were pronounced alike. 
I'lius Speed's jest in the Two Gentlemen of Verona — 
" Twenty to one then he is shipp'd alre.idy, 
And I have play'd the ilieep in losing him." 


Act IV.] 


[Scene II. 

What observation mad'st thou in this case. 
Of his heart's meteors tilting in his face ? 
Luc. First, he denied you had in liim no 

right. °' 
Adr. He meant, he did me none ; the more 

my spite. 
Luc. Then swore he, that lie was a stranger 

Adr. And true he swore, though yet forsworn 

he were. 
Luc. Then pleaded I for you. 
Adr. And what said he ? 

Ljcc. That love I begg'd for you, he begg'd 

of me. 
Adr. With what persuasion did he tempt thy 

Luc. With words that in an honest suit might 
First, he did praise my beauty ; then, my speech. 
Adr. Did'st speak him fair ? 
Luc. Have patience, I beseech. 

Adr. I cannot, nor I will not, hold me stOl ; 
My tongue, though not my heart, shall have his 

He is deformed, crooked, old, and sere, 
Ill-fac'd, worse-bodied, shapeless every where ; 
Vicious, ungentle, foolish, blunt, unkind; 
Stigmatical** in making, worse in mind. 
Luc Who would be jealous then of such a 
No evil lost is wail'd when it is gone. 

Adr. Ah ! but I think him better than I say. 
And yet would herein others' eyes were 
worse : 
Far from her nest the lapwing cries, away ; ' 

My heart prays for him, though my tongue 
do curse. 

Enter DiiOMio of Syracuse. 

Dro. S. Here, go : the desk, the purse ; sweet 

now, make haste. 
Luc. How hast thou lost thy breath ? 
Bro. S. By running fast. 

Adr. Where is thy master, Droniio? is he 

Dro. S. No, he 's in Tartar limbo, worse than 
A devil in an everlasting garment hath him. 
One whose hard heart is button'd up with 

steel ; 
A fiend, a fairy, pitiless and rough ; 
A wolf, nay, worse, — a fellow all iu buff;'' 

• The modern construction would be, "He denied you 
nad in him a right;" but this was Shakspe.e's phraseology, 
and that of his time. 

•> Stigmatical — branded in form — with a mark upon him. 


A back-friend, a shoulder-clapper, one that coun- 
The passages of alleys, creeks, and narrow 

lands ; 
A hound that runs counter, and yet draws dry 

foot well ; ^ 
One that, before the judgment, carries poor souls 
to heU." 
Adr. Why, man, what is the matter ? 
Dro. S. I do not know the matter ; he is 

'rested on the case. 
Adr. What, is he arrested ? tell me, at whose 

Dro. S. I know not at whose suit he is ar- 
rested, well ; 
But is in a suit of buff, which 'rested him, 

that can I tell : 
Will you send him, mistress, redemption, the 
money in his desk ? 
Adr. Go fetch it, sister. — This I wonder at, 

[^E.rit LuciANA. 
That he, unknown to me, should be in debt : — 
Tell me, was he arrested on a band ? " 

Dro. S. Not on a band, but on a stronger 
A chain, a cliain : do you not hear it ring ? 
Adr. What, the chain ? 
Dro. S. No, no, the bell : 't is time that I were 
It was two ere I left him, and now the clock 
strikes one. 
Adr. The hours come back ! that did I never 

Dro. S. O yes. Tf any hour meet a sergeant, 

a' turns back for very fear. 
Adr. As if time were in debt ! how fondly 

dost thou reason ! 
Dro. S. Time is a very bankrout, and owes 
more thau he 's worth, to season. 
Nay, he 's a thief too : Have you not heard men 

That time comes stealing on by night and day ? 
If he be in debt, and theft, and a sergeant in the 

Hath he not reason to turn back an hour in a 
day ? 

Enter Lxjciana. 

Adr. Go, Dromio ; there 's the money, bear it 
straight ; 
And bring tliy master home immediately. 
Come, sister ; I am press'd down with conceit ; 
Conceit, my comfort, and my injury. 


t> Brtod— bond. 

c JIc is Malone's correction of the original /. Mr. Dyce 
adopts that of Rowe, " If a be." 

Act IY.] 


[SciNE in. 

SCEliEllL—ne same. 
Enter Aktipuolus of Syracuse. 

Aut. S. There 's uot a man I meet but dotli 
salute me 
As if I wore their well-acquaiuted friend; 
And every oue doth call me by my name. 
Some tender money to me, some invite me ; 
Some other give me thanks for kindnesses ; 
Some offer me commodities to buy : 
Even now a tador cali'd me in his shop. 
And sliow'd me silks that he had bought for me. 
And, therewithal, took measure of my body. 
Sure, these are but imaginary wiles, 
And Lapland sorcerers inhabit here. 

Enter Djioiiio of Syracuse. 

Dro. S. Master, here 's the gold you sent me for : 
What, have you got [rid ofj the picture of 
Old Adam new apparelled ? 

Jut. S. What gold is this ? What Adam dost 
thou mean ? 

Dro. S. Not that Adam that kept the paradise, 
but that Adam that keeps the prison : he that 
goes in the calf's-skin that was killed for the 
prodigal ; he that came behind you, sir, like an 
evil angel, and bid you forsidce your liberty. 

Jut. S. I understand thee not. 

Dro. S. No ? why, 't is a plain case : he that 
went like a base-viol, in a case of leather ; the 
man, sir, that, when gentlemen are tired, gives 
them a fob,*" and 'rests them; he, sir, that takes 
pity on decayed men, and gives them suits of 
durance ; he that sets up his rest to do more 
exploits with his mace, than a morris-pike. 

Ant. S. What ! thou mean'st an officer ? 

Dro. S. Ay, sir, the sergeant of the band ; he, 
that brings any man to answer it that breaks his 
band; one that thinks a man always going to 
bed, and says, ' God give you good rest ! * 

Ant. S. Well, sir, there rest in your foolery. 
Is there any ship puts forth to-night ? may we 
be gone ? 

Dro. S. Wliy, sir, I brought you word an hour 
since, that the bark Expedition put forth to- 
night ; and then were you hindered l)y the ser- 
geant, to tarry for the hoy Delay : Here are the 
angels that you sent for, to deliver you. 

Ant. S. The fellow is distract, and so am I ; 
And here we wander in illusions ; 
Some blessed power deliver us from hence ! 

• Theobald inserted rid of ; and they appear necessary, — 
tor the " fellow all in buff" was not with the Aniipholus of 

i> Fob in the original. Mr. llallivrell suggests top. 

R 2 243 

Enter a Courtezan. 
Cour. Well met, well met, master Antipholus. 
I see, sir, you have found the goldsmith now : 
Is that the chain you promis'd me to-day r 
Ant. S. Satan, avoid ! I charge thee tempt mc 

Dro. S. Master, is this mistress Satan? 
Ant. S. It is the devil. 

Dro. S. Nay, she is worse, she is the devil's 
dam ; and here she comes in the habit of a light 
wench ; and thereof comes, that the wenches 
say, ' God damn me,' that 's as much as to say, 
'God make me a light wench.' It is written, 
Ihey appear to men like angels of light : hglit is 
an effect of fire, and fire will burn ; ert/o, light 
wenches will bum. Come not near her. 

Cour. Your man and you are marvellous 
merry, sir. 
Will you go with me ? We '11 mend our dinner 
Dro. S. Master, if you do, expect spoon-meat, 
so bespeak a long spoon. 
Ant. S. Why, Dromio ? 
Dro. S. Marry, he must have a long spoon 
that must eat with the devil. 
Ant. S. Avoid thee,' fiend ! what tell 'st thou 
me of supping? 
Thou art, as you are all, a sorceress : 
I conjure thee to leave me, and be gone. 

Cour. Give me the ring of mine you had at 
Or, for my diamond, the chain you promis'd ; 
And I '11 begone, sir, and not trouble you. 
Dro. S. Some devils ask but the paring of 
one's iiad, 
A rush, a hair, a drop of blood, a pin, 
A nut, a cherry-stone ; but she, more covetous. 
Would have a chain. 
Master, be wise ; an' if you give it her, 
The devil will shake her chain, and fright us 
with it. 
Cour. I pray you, sir, my ring, or else the 
chain ; 
I hope you do not iiicaii to cheat me so. 

Ant. S. Avaunt, thou witch ! Come, Dromio, 

let us go. 
Dro. S. Fly pride, says the peacock : Mistress, 
that you know. 

, [Exeunt Ant. S. and Diio. S. 
Cour. Now, out of doubt, Antipholus is mad, 
Else would he never so demean himself: 
A ring he hath of mine worthy forty ducats. 
And for the same he promis'd me a chain ; 
Both one, and other, he denies mc now. 
The reason tliat I gather he is mad, 

" Avoid thte—tken in first folio; the fourth folio, thou; 
Mr. Dyce, Ihce ; Mr. White, thou. 

ACT rv.] 

(Besides tliis present instance of his rage,) 
Ts a mad tale he told to-day at dinner, 
Of his own doors being shut against his en- 
Belike, his wife, acquainted with his fits, 
On purpose shut the doors against his way. 
My way is now, to hie home to his house, 
And teil his wife, tliat, being lunatic, 
He rush'd into my house, and took perforce 
My ring away : 'This course I fittest choose ; 
For forty ducats is too much to lose. \_E-vU. 

SCENE lY. —T/ie same. 


[Scene IV, 

Enter Antipholtjs of Ephesus, and an Officer. 
JnL E. Fear me not, man, I will not break 
away : 
I '11 give thee, ere I leave thee, so much money 
To warrant thee, as I am 'rested for. 
My wife is in a wayward mood to-day ; 
And will not lightly trust the messenger : 
That I should be attach'd in Ephesus,"" 
I teU you, 't will sound harshly in her ears.— 

Enter Dromio of Ephesus, mth, a robe's end. 
Here comes my man; I think he brings the 

How now, sir ? have you that I sent you for ? 
Dro. E. Here's that, I warrant you, will pay 

them ^all.^ 
JnL E. But where 's the money ? 
J)ro. E. Why, sir, I gave the money for the 

J»(. E. Five hundred ducats, villain, for a 

rope ? 
Dro. E. 1 '11 serve you, sir, five hundred at tlie 

Jni. E. To what end did I bid thee hie thee 

home ? 
Dro. E. To a rope's end, sir ; and to that end 

am I rcturn'd. 
JnL E. And to that end, sir, I will welcome 

you \_Beati7i{/ him. 

Off. Good sir, be patient. 
J)ro. E. Nay, 't is for me to be patient ; I am 
in adversity. 

Off. Good now, hold thy tongue 

Dro. E. Nay, rather persuade hiin to liold lus 


Ant. E. Thou whoreson, senseless villain . 

n This is ordinarily printed— 

" And will not lif,'lilly trust the messenper, 
That 1 should he iiltach'c! in Ephesus. 
As we print the passa-e, his wife will not lif;htly, easily trus 
the messenger with the money, for it will sound harshly m 
hcr^ars that her husband should be attached m Ephesus. 


Dro. E. I would I were senseless, sir, that I 
might not feel your blows. 

Ant.E. Thou art sensible in nothing bu. 
i blows, and so is an ass. 

Dro. E. I am an ass, indeed ; you may prove 
it by ray long ears. I have served him from the 
hoiu: of my nativity to this instant, and have no- 
thing at his hands for my service, but blows : 
when I am cold, he heats me with beating : 
when I am warm, he cools me with beating: I 
am waked with it, when I sleep ; raised with it, 
when I sit ; driven out of doors mth it, when 1 
go from home ; welcomed home with it, when I 
return : nay, I bear it on my shoulders, as a beg- 
gar wont her brat : and, I think, when he hath 
lamed me, I shall beg Nvith it from door to door. 

Enter Adriana, Luciana, and the Courtezan, 
with PiNCii, and others. 

Ant. E. Come, go along ; my wife is coming 

Dro. E. Mistress, respice finem, respect your 
end; or rather to prophesy, like the parrot, 
• Beware the rope's end.' 

Ant. E. Wilt thou stUl talk ? [_Beats hm. 

Coitr. How say you now ? is not your husband 

mad ? 
Adr. His incivility confirms no less. 
Good doctor Pinch, you are a conjurer; 
Establish him in his true sense again. 
And I will please you what you will demand.^ 
Luc. Alas, how fiery and how sharp he looks ! 
Coiir. Mark, how he trembles in his extasy ! 
Pinch. Give me your hand, and let me feel 

your pulse. 
Ant. E. There is my hand, and let it feel 

your ear. 
Pinch. I charge thee, Satan, hous'd within 
this man, 
To yield possession to my holy prayers, 
And to thv state of darkness hie thee straight ; 
I conjure thee by all the saints in heaven. 
Ant. E. Peace, doting wizard, peace ; I am 

not mad. 
Adr. 0,that thouwert not, poor distressed soul! 
Ant. E. You minion, you, are these your cus- 
tomers ? 
Did this companion with the saffron face 
Bevel and feast it at my house to-day. 
Whilst upon me the guilty doors were shut, 
And T denied to enter in my house ? 

Adr. husband, God doth know, you dm d 
at home, 
WHicre 'would vou had rcmain'd until this time, 
Free from these slanders, and this open shame ! 

Act IV. 1 COMF.DY OF ERRORS. [Scfse iv. 

Ani. K Diu'd at home ! Thou villain, what 

Ant. K. Dissembling harlot, thou art false 

say'st thou ? 

in all ; 

Dro. E. Sir, sooth to say, you did not diue at 

And art confederate with a damned pack. 


To make a loathsome abject scorn of me : 

Ant. K Were not my doors lock'd up, and I 

But with these nails I "11 pluck out these false 

shut out ? 


I),o. E. Perdy, your doors were lock'd and 

That would behold in me this shameful sport. 

you shut out. 

[Pl.vcil and his Assistants dind Ant. E. 

Ant. E. Aud did not she herself rcvUe me 

and Duo. E. 


Adr. 0, bind him, bind hiin, let him not come 

Dro. E. Sans fable, she herself revil'd you 

near me. 


Pinch. More company ; the fiend is strong 

Aiil. E. Did not her kitchen-maid rail, taunt, 

within him. 

and scorn me ? 

Luc. Ah me, poor man ! how pale aud wan be 

Dro. E. Ccrtes, she did : the kitchen-vestal 

looks ! 

seora'd you. 

Anf. E. What, will you murder me? Thou 

Anl. E. And did not I in rage depart from 

gaoler, thou, 

thence ? 

I am thy prisoner: wilt thou suffer them 

Dro. E. In verity, you did ; — my bones bear 

To make a rescue ? 


Off". Masters, let him go : 

Tliat since have felt the vigour of his rage. 

He is my prisoner, and you shall not have him. 

AJr. Is 't good to sooth him in these contra- 

Pinch. Go, bind this man, for he is frantic too. 

ries ? 

Adr. What wilt thou do, thou peevish otficer ? 

Pinch. It is no shame ; the fellow finds his 

Hast thou delight to see a wretched man 


Do outrage and displeasure to himself ? 

And, yielding to him, humours well his frenzy. 

Of. He is my prisoner ; if I let him go. 

Ant. E. Thou hast suborn'd the goldsmith to 

The debt he owes will be requir'd of me. 

arrest me. 

Adr. I will discharge thee, ere I go from thee : 

A'ir. Alas ! I sent you money to redeem you. 

Bear me forthwith unto his creditor. 

By Dromio here, who came in haste for it. 

And, knowing how the debt grows, I will pay it. 

Dro. E. Money by me ? heart and good-^vill 

Good master doctor, see him safe convcy'd 

you might, 

Home to my house. most unhappy day ! 

But, surely, master, not a rag of money. 

Ant. E. most unhappy strumpet! 

Ant. E. Went'st not thou to her for a purse of 

Dro. E. [Master, I am here enter'd in bond 

ducats ? 

for you. 

Adr. He came to me, and I deliver'd it. 

Ant. E. Out on thee, villain ! wherefore dost 

Luc. And I am witness with her, that she did. 

thou mad me ? 

Dro. E. God and the rope-maker, bear me 

Dro. E. Will you be bound for nothing ? be 


mad, good master ; cry, the devil. — 

That I was sent for nothing but a rope I 

Luc. God help, poor souls, how idly do they 

Pinch. Mistress, both man and master is pos- 


sess'd ; 

Adr. Go bear him hence.— Sister, go you with 

I know it by their pale and deadly looks : 

me. — 

They must be bound, and laid in some dark 

[Ereunt PiNcn and A.ssistants, tciih Axx. E. 


and Duo. E. 

Ah! E. Say, wherefore didst thou lock me 

Say now, whose suit is he arrested at ? 

fortii to-day ? 

Of. One Angelo, a goldsmith. Do you know 

And why dost thou deny the bag of gold ? 

him ? 

Adr. I did not, gentle husband, lock thee 

Adr. I know the man : What Ls the sum ho 



Dro E. And, gentle master, I receiv'd no 

Of. Two hundred ducats. 


Adr. Say, how grows it due ? 

But I confess, sir, that we were lock'd out. 

Of. Due for a chain your husband had of him. 

AJr. Dissembling villain, thou speak'st false 

Adr. He did bespeak a chain for me, but had 

in both. 

it not. 


Act IV.] 


[Scene IV 

Cotir. When as your husband, all in rage, 
Came to my liouse, and took away my ring, 
(The ring I saw upon Jiis finger now,) 
Straiglit after, did I meet hini with a chain. 

Adr. It may be so, but I did never see it : — 
Come, gaoler, bring me where tlie goldsmith is ; 
I long to know the truth licreof at large. 

Enter Antipholus of Syi-acusc, tcith his rapier 
drawn, and Dkomio of Syracuse. 

Luc. God, for thy mercy ! they are loose agaiu, 
Adr. And come ^vith naked swords ; let 'S call 
more help. 
To have them bound again. 

Off. Away, they '11 kill us. 

[Exennt Officer, Adr. and Luc. 
Ant. S. I sec, these witches arc afraid of 

Bro. S. She, that would be your wife, now ran 

from you. 
Ant. S. Come to the Centaur ; fetch our stuff 
from thence : 
I long that we were safe and sound aboard. 

Dro. S. Faith, stay here this night, they will 
surely do us no harm ; you saw they speak us 
fair, give us gold : methiuks, they are such a 
gentle nation, that but for the mountain of mad 
flesh that claims marriage of me, I could find in 
my heart to stay here still, and turn witch. 
Ant. S. I will not stay to-night for aU the 
Therefore away, to get our stuif aboard. 


" S/i(/— baggage. "The king s stuff" is often mentioned 
iii-Llie orders issued for royal progresses. 


Sc. II. p. 212. — " A devil in an everlastinggarmenthath 
One -wliose hard heart is button'd up v/ith steel." 

" A devil in an everlasting garment hath him,/c/^; 
One whose hard lieart is button'd up with steel, 
7(7(0 lias no toucli of mercy, cannot fed." — Collier. 

The additions are considered by Mr. Collier as valuable 
thin<;s that had been lost. We consider them as senti- 
mental stuff, very much out of character— added in a 
more recent period than that of Shakspere, to make cou- 

[' l'"ar from her mtl, the Jupwiiiy oice.'] 


'Scene II. — " Far from hernest, the lapicing cries, 

Tnis image was a favourite one with the Eliza- 
bethan writers. In Lily's Campaspe, 1584, we 
have, " You resemble the lapwing, who crieth most 
where her nest is not." Greene and Nash also 
have the same allusion, which Shakspere repeats 
in Measure for Measure : — 

" With maids to seem the lapwing, and to jest, 
Tongue far from heart." 

• Scene II.— " ^ fellow all in buff." 

The prince ask.") Falstaff, " Is not a buflf jerkin a 
most sweet robe of durance?' The bufif jerkin, 
according to Dromio's definition, is "an everlast- 
ing garment," worn by " a shoulder-clapper." The 
commentators have thrown away much research 
upon these passages. Steevens maintains that eier- 
lasting and durance were technical names for very 
strong and durable cloth; but there can be no 
doubt, we think, that the occupation of the bailiff 
being somewhat dangerous, in times when men 
were ready to resist the execution of the law with 
the sword and rapier, he was clothed with the ox- 
skin, the buff, which in warfare subsequently took 
the piice of the heavier coat of mail. It is by no 
meana clear, from the passage before us, that the 
bailiff did not even wear a sort of armour : — 
" One whose hard heart is button'd up with steel." 

'Scene II. — "A hound thai runs counUr, and yet 
draws dry-foot well." 
The hound that runs counter runs upon a false 
course; but the houud that draws dry-fool well, 

follows the game by the scent of the foot, as the 
blood-hound is said to do. The bailiff's dog-liko 
attributes were not inconsistent ; for he was a Ser- 
jeant of the counter prison, and followed his game 
as Brainworm describes in ' Every Man in his Hu- 
mour : ' " Well, the truth is, my old master intends 
to follow my young master, dry-foot, over Moor- 
fields to London this morning." 

* Scene II. — " One that, before the judgment, 
carries poor souls to hell." 

The "before judgment" is that upon 
mesne-process, and Shakspere is here employing 
his legal knowledge. It appears that Hell was the 
name of a place of confinement under the Exche- 
quer Chamber for the debtors of the Crown. It 
is described by that name in the Journals of the 
House of Commons on the occasion of the corona- 
tion of William and Mary. 

'Scene IV. — "Here's that, I warrant you, will 
pay them all." 

Dr. Gray has the following note on this pa.s- 
sage : " If the honest countryman in the Isle of 
Axholm in Lincolnshire, where they grow little else 
but hemp, had been acquainted with Sbakspere's 
AVorks, I should have imagined that he borrowed 
his jest from hence. At the beginning of the re- 
bellion in 1C41, a party of tne parliament soldiers, 
seeing a man sowing somewhat, asked him what it 
was he was sowing, for they hoped to reap his crop. 
' I am sowing of hemp, gentlemen,* (says he,) ' and 
I hope I have enough for you all.' " 

[Remains of the Amptiitlicatre at Ephesiis] 


SCENE I.— The same. 
Enter Merchant and Angelo. 

Aiir/. I am sorry, sir, that I have hiuder'd you ; 
Butj I protest, he had tlie chain of me, 
Though most dislionestly he doth deny it. 

Mer. How is the man esteem'd heic in the 
city ? 

Anff. Of very reverent reputation, sir. 
Of credit infinite, higlily belov'd, 
Second to none that lives here in the city ; 
His word miglit bear my wealth at any time. 

Mer. Speak softly : yonder, as I tliiuk, he 

Enter Antipiiolus and DuoMio of Syracuse. 

Anj. 'T is so ; and tliat self chain about his 

Which he forswore, most monstrously, to Iiave. 
Good sir, draw near to mc, I 'il speak to him. 
Signior Antipholus, I wonder much 
That you would put me to this shame and 

trouble ; 
And not without some scandal to yourself. 
With circumstance and oatlis, so to deny 
This chain, which now you wear so openly -. 
Beside the charge, tlie shame, imprisonment, 
You have done wrong to this my honest friend ; 
Who, but for staying on our controversy, 


Had hoisted sail, and put to sea to-day : 
Tliis chain you had of me, can you deny it ? 
Ant. S. I think 1 had ; I never did deny it. 
Mer. Yes, that you did, sir; and forswore 

it too. 
Ant. S. Who heard me to deny it, or for- 
swear it ? 
Mer. These ears of mine, tliou knowest, did 
hear thee : 
Eye on thee, wretch ! 't is pity, that thou liv'st 
To walk where any honest men resort. 

Ant. S. Thou art a villain to impeach me thus: 
I '11 prove mine honoui- and mine honesty 
Against thee presently, if thou dar'st stand. 
Mer. I dare, and do defy thee for a villain. 

{Thei/ draw 

Enter Adiuana, Luciana, Courtezan, a?id 

Adr. Hold, hurt him not, for God's sake ; he 
is mad; 
Some get within liim,^ take liis sword away : 
Bind Dromio too, and bear them to my house. 
Dro. S. Run, master, run; for God's sake, 
take a house.'' 
This is some priory. — In, or we are spoil'd. 

[_E.veimt Ant. S. and Duo. S. to the Priory. 

" Get within liim. Close with liiin. 
1' Take a house. Take to a house ; take the shelter of a 

Act v.] 



Enter the Abbess. 

Abb. Be quiet, people. Wbcrcfure throng 
you hither ? 

AJr. To fetch uiy poor distracted husband 
hence : 
Let us come in, that we may bind him fast, 
i\jid bear him home for his recovery. 

Aug. I knew ho \v;is not ia his perfect wits. 

Mer. I am sorry now that I did draw on him. 

Abb. How long hath this posscssiou held tiic 
luau ? 

AJr. This week he hath been heavy, sour, 
And much dill'erent from the mau he was ; 
But, till this afternoon, his passion 
Ne'er brake into extremity of rage. 

Abb. Hath he not lost much we;dth by wrack 
of sea ? 
Buried some dear friend? Uath not else his 

Stray'd his affection in unlawful luvc ? 
A sin, prevailing much in youthful men. 
Who give their eyes the liberty of gazing. 
"Which of these sorrows is he subject to ? 

AJr. To none of these, except it be the last ; 
Namely, some love, that drew him oft from home. 

Abb. You should for that have rcpreheudcd 

AJr. Whv, so I did. 

Abb. Ay, but not rough enougli. 

AJr. As roughly as my modesty would let me. 

Abb. Haply, in private. 

AJr. And in assemblies too. 

Abb. Ay, but not enough. 

AJr. It was the copy of our conference : 
In bed, he slept not for my urging it ; 
At board, he fed not for my urging it ; 
Alone, it was the subject of my theme ; 
In company, I often glanced it ; 
Still did I tell him it was vile and bad. 

Abb. And therefore came it that the man was 
The venom clamours of a jealous woman 
Poison more deadly than a mad dog's tooth. 
It seems, his sleeps were hinder'd by thy railing : 
And thereof comes it, that his head is light. 
Thou say'st, his meat was sauc'd with thy up- 

braidings : 
Unquiet meals make ill digestions. 
Thereof the raging Are of fever bred ; 
And what 's a fever but a fit of madness ? 
Thou say'st, his sports were hinder'd by thy 

brawls : 
Sweet recreation barr'd, what doth ensue 
But moodv and dull melancholv. 

Kinsman to grim and comfortless despair," 
And, at her heels, a huge infectious troop 
Of pale distempcratures, and foes to life t* 
In foud, in sport, and life-preserving rest 
To be disturb'd, would mad or man, or beast : 
Tlie cousecpiencc is then, thy jealous lits 
Have scar'd thy husband from the use of wits. 

Luc. She never reprehended him but mihlly, 
When he demeau'd himself rough, rude and 

Why bear you these rebukes, and answer not ? 

AJr. She did betray me to my own reproof. — 
Good people, enter, and lay hold on him. 

Abb. No, not a creature enters in my house. 

AJr. Then, let your seiTants bring my hus- 
band forth. 

Abb. Neither; he took this place for sanc- 
And it shall privilege him from your hands, 
Till I have brought him to his wits again. 
Or lose my labour in assaying it. 

AJr. I will attend my husband, be liis um-sc, 
Diet his sickness, for it is my office. 
And will have no attorney but myself; 
And therefore let me have him home with mc. 

Abb. Be patient : for I will not let him stir. 
Till I have used the approved means I have, 
With wholesome syrups, drugs, and holy prayers 
To make of him a formal man again : 
It is a branch and parcel of mine oath, 
A charitable duty of my order ; 
Therefore depart, and leave him here with me. 

AJr. I will not hence, and leave my husband 
here ; 
And ill it doth beseem your holiness, 
To separate the husband and the wife. 

Abb. Be quiet, and dcj)arl, thou shalt not 
have him. [7:.n7 Abbess. 

Luc. Complain unto the duke of this indignity. 

AJr. Come, go; I will fall prostrate at his 
And never rise until my tears and prayers 
Have won his grace to come in person hither, 
And take perforce my husband from the abbess. 

Mcr. By this, 1 think, the dial points at Cvc : 
Anon, I 'm sure, the duke himself in person 
Comes this way to the melancholy valr, — 
The place of death'' and sorry execution, 
Behind the ditches of the abbey here. 

Aug. Upon what cause ? 

n Tapell took an amusing method of correcting tlie sup- 
posed confusion in the sex of melancholy, reading thus: — 
" Hut moody and duU melancholy, kins- 
Woman to grim and comfortless despair." 
This is as good as 

" I studied in the V- 
2fivcTtity of Gottingen." 
b P/ace of death — the original, depth. 


Arr v.] 


[Sc>:ne 1. 

Mcr. To see a reverend Syracusau merchant, 
Who put unluckily into tliis bay 
Against the laws and statutes of this town, 
Beheaded publicly for his offence. 

Aug. See, where they come; we will behold 

his death. 
Luc. Kneel to the didic, before he pass the 

Enter Duke, attended; J]]geon, bare-headed; 
with the Headsman and other Officers. 

I)uhe. Yet once again proclaim it publicly, 
If any friend will pay the sum for him, 
lie shall not die, so much we tender him. 

Adr. Justice, most sacred duke, against the 
abbess ! 

Biilce. She is a virtuous and a reverend lady ; 
It camiot be that she hath done thee wrons:. 

Adr. May it please your grace, Antipholus, 
my husband, — 
Whom I made lord of me and all I had. 
At your important letters,— this ill day 
A most outrageous fit of madness took him ; 
That desperately he hurried through the street, 
(With him his bondman, all as mad as he,) 
Doing displeasure to the citizens 
By rushing in their houses, bearing thence 
Rings, jewels, any thing his rage did like. 
Once did I get him bound, and sent him home. 
Whilst to take order for the wrongs I went, 
That here and there his fury had committed. 
Anon, I wot not by what strong escape,^ 
He broke from those that had the g-uard of him ; 
And, with his mad attendant and himself. 
Each one with ireful passion, mth drawn swords. 
Met us again, and, madly bent on us. 
Chased us away; till, raising of more aid. 
We came again to bind them : then they fled 
Into this abbey, whither we pursued them; 
And here the abbess shuts the gates on us. 
And will not suffer us to fetch him out, 
Nor send him forth, that we may bear him hence. 
Tiiercfore, most gracious duke, with thy com- 
Let him be brought forth, and borne hence for 

Bukc. Long since, thy husband scrv'd me in 
my wars ; 
And I to thee cngag'd a prince's word, 
"\yiien thou didst make him master of thy bed, 
To do him all the grace and good I could. 
Go, some of you, knock at the abbey-gate. 
And bid the lady abbess come to me ; 
I will determine this, before I stir. 

^ strong escape. 


Escape effected by strength. 

Enter a Servant. 
Serv. mistress, mistress, shift and save 
yourself ! 
My master and his man are both broke loose, 
Beaten the maids a-row,°' and bound the doctor. 
Whose beard they have singed oif with brands 

of fire ; 
And ever as it blazed, they threw on him 
Great pails of puddled mire to quench the hair : 
My master preaches patience to him, and the 

His man with scissars nicks him like a fool -.^ 
And, sui'c, unless you send some present help, 
Between them they will kill the conjurer. 

Adr. Peace, fool, thy master and his man are 
here ; 
And that is false thou dost report to us. 

Serv. Mistress, upon my life, I tell you true ; 
I have not breath'd abuost since I did see it. 
He cries for you, and vows, if he can take you. 
To scotch your face," and to disfigure you : 

[C;y within. 
Hark, hark, I hear him, mistress ; fly, be gone. 
Duke. Come, stand by me, fear nothing: 

Guard with halberds. 
Adr. Ah me, it is my husband ! Witness you 
That he is borne about invisible : 
Even now we hous'd him in the abbey here ; 
And now he's there, past thought of human 

Enter Antipholus and Dromio of Ephesus. 

Ant. E. Justice, most gracious duke, oh, grant 
me justice ! 
Even for the service that long since I did thee, 
When I bcstrid thee in the wars, and took 
Deep scars to save thy life ; even for the blood 
That then I lost for thee, now grant me justice ! 
J<!ge. Unless the fear of death doth make me 
I see my son Antipholus and Dromio. 

Ant. E. Justice, sweet prince, against that 
woman there. 
She whom thou gav'st to mc to be my wife ; 
That hath abused and dishonoured mc. 
Even in the strength and height of injury ! 
Beyond imagination is the wrong 
That she this day hath shameless thrown on 
Duke. Discover how, and thou shalt find me 

'■^ A-row- on rote. One after the otlier. 

i" It was the custom to shave, or crop, the heads of idiots. 
" Crop, the conjurer," was probably a nickname for the un- 
liappy natural. 

c Scotch. The folio scorch. Warburton made the correc- 
tion, of which Steevens disapproved. 

AiT v.] 



Atif. E. This day, great duke, she shut the 
doors upon me, 
While she with harlots' feasted in my house. 

Buke. A grievous fault : Say, woman, didst 
thou so ? 

Adr. No, my good lord ; — myself, he, and my 
To-day did dine together : So befal niy soul 
As this is false he Ijurdens mc wilhal ! 

Luc. Ne'er may I look on day, nor sleep on 
But she tells to your highness simple truth ! 

Ang. peijur'd woman! they arc both for- 
In this the madman justly chargeth them. 

Ant. E. My liege, I am advised what I say ; 
Neither disturbed with the effect of wine, 
Nor he^idy-rasli, provok'd with raging ire. 
Albeit my wrongs might make one wiser mad. 
This woman lock'd mc out this day from dinner: 
That goldsmith there, were he not paek'd with her. 
Could witness it, for he was with me then ; 
Who parted with me to go fetch a chain. 
Promising to bring it to the Porpentinc, 
W^here Balthazar and I did dine togt^thcr. 
Our dinner done, and he not coming thither, 
I went to seek him : In the street I met him ; 
And in his company that gentleman. 
There did this perjur'd goldsmith swear me dovni, 
That I this day of him receiv'd the chain, 
^V^lich, God he knows, I saw not : for the which, 
1 le did arrest me with an oflSccr. 
I did obey ; and sent my peasant home 
For certain ducats : he with none retum'd. 
Then fairly I bespoke the officer, 
To go in person mth me to my house. 
By the way wc met 
My wife, her sister, and a rabble more 
Of vile confederates ; along with them 
They brought one Pinch, a hungry lean-faecd 

A mere anatomy, a mountebank, 
A thread-bare juggler, and a fortune-teller; 
A needy, hoUow-ey'd, sharp-looking wretch, 
A living dead : this pernicious slave. 
Forsooth, look on Ivim as a conjuror, 
And gazing in mine eyes, feeling my pulse. 
And with no face, as 'twere, outfacing mc. 
Cries out, I was posscss'd : then altogether 
They fell upon mc, bound me, bore me thence; 
And in a dark and dankish vardt at home 

» A harloi was, originally, a hireling. Thus in Chaucer's 
' Sompnoure's Tale : ' — 

" A sturdy harlot went hem ay behind, 
That waa hii hostes man." 

There left mc and my man, both bound together ; 
Till gnawing with my teeth my bonds in sunder, 
I gain'd my freedom, and immediately 
Ban hither to your grace ; whom I beseech 
To give me ample satisfaction 
For these deep shames, and great indignities. 
Aiiff. My lord, in truth, thus far I witness with 
That he dined not at home, but was lock'd out. 
Duke. But had he such a chain of thee, or no ? 
Aiiff. He had, my lord : and when he ran in 
These people saw the chain abont his neck. 
Mer. Besides, I will be sworn, these ears of 
ncard you confess you had the chain of him. 
After you first forswore it on the mart. 
And, thereupon, I drew my sword on you ; 
And then you fled into this abbey here. 
From whence, I think, you are come by miracle. 
Ant. E. I never came witliin these abbey walls. 
Nor ever didst thou draw thy sword on mc ; 
I never saw tlic chain, so help mc heaven ! 
And this is false you burden me withal. 

Duke. Why, what an intricate impeach is this ! 
I think you all have drunk of Circe's cup. 
If here you hous'd him, here he would have 

been : 
If he wore mad, he would not plead so coldly : 
You say he dined at home ; the goldsmith here 
Denies that saying : — Sirrah, what say you ? 
Dro. E. Sii-, he dined with her there, at tlie 

Cour. He did; and from my finger snatch'd 

that ring. 
Ant. E. 'T is true, my liege, this ring I had of 

Duke. Saw'st thou him enter at the abbey 

here ? 
Cour. As sure, my liege, as I do sec your 

Duke. Why, this is strange : — Go call the 
abbess hither; 
1 think, you are all mated, or stark mad. 

l^Exit an Attendant. 
^Effe Most mighty duke, vouchsafe me speak 
a word ; 
Haply, I see a friend will save my life, 
And pay the sum that may deliver me. 

Duke. Speak freely, Syracusan, what thou 

^Ef/e. Is not your name, sir, call'd Aiitipholus? 
And is not that your bondman Dromio ? 

Dro. E. Within this hour I was his bondman, 



Act v.] 



But he, I tliauk him, guaw'd in two my cords : 
Now am I Dromio, and his man, unbound. 

JErjc. I am sure you both of you remember mo. 

Dro. E. Ourselves we do remember, sir, by 
Tor lately we were bound, as you are now. 
You are not Pinch's patient, are you, sir ? 

/Ege. TVhy look you strange on me ? you 
know me well. 

Ant. E. I )ievcr saw you in my life, till now. 

JErjc. Oil ! grief hath chang'd nic, since you 
saw me last ; 
And careful hours, with Time's deformed hand, 
Have written strange defeatures in my face : 
But tell me yet, dost thou not know my voice ? 

A)it. E. Neither. 

A-lff^. Dromio, nor thou ? 

Dro. E. No, trust me, sir, nor I. 

A'!;/e. I am sure thou dost, 

I)ro. E. Ay, sir ? but I am sure I do not ; and 
whatsoever a man denies you are now bound to 
believe him. 

Ai(je. Not knov/ my voice ! 0, time's extre- 
mity ! 
Hast thou so crack'd and splitted my poor tongue, 
In seven short years, that here my only son 
Knows not my feeble key of untun'd cares ? . 
Though now this grained face of mine be hid 
In sap-consuming winter's drizzled snow, 
And all the conduits of my blood froze up, 
Yet hath my night of life some memory. 
My wasting lamps some fading glimmer left, 
My dull deaf ears a little use to hear : 
All these old witnesses ([ cannot err,) 
Tell me, thou art my son Antipholus. 

A)d. E. I never saw my father in my life. 

AHfje. But seven years since, in Syracusa, boy. 
Thou know'st we parted : but, perhaps, my son, 
Thou sham'st to acknowledge me in misery. 

Ant. E. The duke, and all that know me in 
the city, 
Can witness with me that it is not so ; 
I ne'er saw Syracusa in my life. 

JJiiIce. I tell thee, Syracusan, twenty years 
Have I been patron to Antipholus, 
During which time he ne'er saw Syracusa : 
I sec, thy age and dangers make thee dote. 

Enter the Abbess, tcith Antipholus of Syracuse, 
and Duo Alio of Syracuse. 

Abb. Most mighty Duke, behold a man much 
wrong'd. [All gather to see him. 

Air. I see two husbands, or mine eyes de- 
ceive me. 

Ijyke. One of these men is genius to the other ; 


And so of these : Which is the natui-al man, 
And which the spirit ? Who deciplicrs them ? 
Dro. S. I, sir, am Dromio ; command hiiti 

Dro. E. I, sir, am Dromio ; pray, let me stay. 
Ant. S. J<]geon, art thou not ? or else his 

ghost ? 
Dro. S. O, my old master, who hath bound 

him here ? 
Abij. Whoever bound him, 1 will loose his 
And gain a husbaivd by his liberty : 
Speak, old jEgeou, if thou be'st the num 
Tliat had'st a wife once call'd Jilmilia, 
That bore thee at a burden two fair sons : 

0, if thou be'st the same Mgcou, speak. 
And speak imto the same Jilmilia ! 

yEt/e. If I dream not, thou art J^lmilia : 
If thou art she, tell me, where is that son 
That floated with thee on the fatal raft ? 

Abb. By men of Epidamnum, he, and I, 
And the twin Dromio, all were taken up : 
But, by and by, rude fishermen of Corinth 
By force took Dromio and my son from them. 
And me they left with those of Epidamnum : 
"What then became of them I cannot tell ; 

1, to this fortune that you see me in. 

Diflce. Why, here begins his morning story 
These two Antipholuses, these two so like. 
And these two Dromios, one in semblance, — 
Besides her urging of her wrack at sea, — 
These are the parents to these children. 
Which accidentally are met together. 
Antipholus, thou cam'st from Corinth first ? 
Ant. S. No, sir, not I ; I came from Syracuse, 
Dit/ce. Stay, stand apart ; I know not which is 

A/it. E. 1 came from Connth, my most gra- 
cious lord. 
Dro. E. And I with him. 
Ant. E. Brouc-ht to this town bv that most 
famous warrior 
Duke Menaphou, your most renowned uncle. 
Adr. "VYhich of you two did dine with me to-day ? 
Ant. S. I, gentle mistress. 
Adi: And are not you my husband ? 

Ant. E. No, I say nay to that. 
Ant. S. And so do I, yet she did call me so , 
And this fair gentlewoman, her sister here. 
Did call me brother : — What I told you then, 
I hope I shall have leisure to make good ; 
If this be not a dream I see and hear. 

Ang. That is the chain, sir, which you had d 

A-T v.] CO^IKDY OF ERKOKS. CScexe i. 

A/il. S. I tiiiuk il bo, sir ; I deny it not. 

And you the calendars of their nativity, 

Ant. E. And you, sir, for this chain arrested inc. 

Go to a gossip's feast, and joy with mc ; 

J/iy. I think I did, sir; I deny it not, 

After so long grief, such festivity !" 

Ai/r. I sent you money, sir, to be your bail, 

Duke. With all my heart I '11 gossip at this 

By Droniio; but I think he brought it not. 


2)ro. E. No, none by me. 

{E.reniit Duke, Abbess, jEgeon, Courtezan, 

J/if.S. This purse of ducats I receiv'd from you, 

Merchant, Angklo, </«</ Attendants. 

And Dromio my man did brinj* tliem mc : 

Dro. S. Master, shall I fetch your slulVfrom 

I see, we still did meet each other's nuiu. 

shipboard ? 

And I was ta'en for him, and he for nic, 

/////. E. Dromio, what stuff of nunc hast thou 

And thereupon these Errors are arose. 

cmbark'd ? 

-////. E. These dueats pawn 1 for my father 

Dro. S. Your goods, that lay at host, sir, in 


the Centaur. 

Dide. It shall not need ; tliv fjithcr liatli his 

Ant. S: He speaks to me ; I am your master, 


Dromio : 

Cour. Sir, I must have that diamond from you. 

Come, go with us ; wc '11 look to that anon : 

Anf. E. There, take it ; and much thanks for 

Embrace thy brother there, rejoice with him. 

my good cliecr. 

\_Excit)it Ant. S. and E., Adr. andLvc. 

AM. Eenowncd duke, vouchsafe to take the 

Dro. S. There is a fat friend at your master's 



To go with us into the abbey here. 

That kitchen'd me for you to-day at dinner; 

And hear at large discoursed all our fortunes : 

She now shall be my sister, not my wife. 

And all that are assembled in this place. 

Dro. E. !Mcthinks you arc my glass, and not 

That by this sympathized one day's error 

my brother : 

Have sulTer'd wrong, go, keep us company, 

I see, bv vou, I am a sweet-faced vouth. 

And we shall make full satisfaction. 

Will you walk in to sec their gossiping? 

Twenty-tivc years have I but gone in travail 

Dro. S. Not I, sir ; you are my elder. 

Of you, my sons; and, till this present hour. 

Dro. E. That 's a question : how shall wc try it ? 

My heavy burden ne'er delivered:* 

Dro. S. Wc will draw cuts for the senior: till 

The duke, my husband, and my children both, 

then, lead thou first. 

• The pMsai;e in the origin.-iI stands thus: — 

Dro. E. Nay, then thus: 

" Thirty-three years h.ive I but gone in travail 

Wc came into the world like brother and brother : 

Of you, my ions, nor till this present hour 
My heavy burthen are ('.elivcred." 

And now let 's go hand in hand, not one before 

Tiibobald altered the number to ticentyfice. The alterations 

another. [E.ret/ni. 

of and for nor, and neV for arc, we adopt from Mr. Dyce. 

Mr. White has "burthen here di livercd," whicli, he says, 

ft Fetlirili/. Johnson suggested this word instead (f 

removes the necessity of altering nor to and. 

nativity in the original. 

- •'■5 

'■'"^^^i»^-^- i_- 

S-^ ■ ^ '^is^S^^At^'.. 

''^^-^ «£ ■ 

...^33** '*'5.^^v':> 


The period of the action in this comedy being 
so necessarily uudefmed, we have preferred to 
select our Pictorial Illustrations from the most 
authentic representations of the existing remains 
of ancient Ephesus, and from views of the present 
state of that celebrated city, of Corinth, and of 
Syracuse. It may be convenient here to furnish a 
brief explanation of these Illustrations. 

The Temple of Diana is thus described by Po- 
cocke : — 

" The Temple of Diana is situated towards the 
south-west corner of the plain, having a lake on the 
west side, now become a morass, extending west- 
ward to the Cayster. This building and the courts 
about it were encompassed every way with a 
strong wall, that to the west of the lake and to the 
nortli was likewise the wall of the city ; there is 
a double wall to the south. Within these walls 
were four courts : that is, one on every side of the 
temple, and on each side of the court to the west 
there was a large open portico, or colonnade, ex- 
tending to the lake, on which arches of bricks were 
turned for a covering. The front of the temple was 
to the east. The temple was built on arches, to 
which there i.s a descent. I went a great way in, 
till I was stopped either by earth thrown down, or 
by the water. They consist of several narrow 
arches, one within another. It is probable they 
extended to the porticoes on each side of the 
western court, and served for foundations to those 
pillars. This being a morassy ground, made the ex- 
jiense of such a foundation so necessary ; on which, 
it is said, as much was bestowed as on the fabric 
above ground. It is probable, also, that the shores 
[sewers] of the city passed this way into the lake. I 
saw a great number of pipes made of earthenware 
in these passages ; but it may be questioned whether 
they were to convey the fdth of the city imder these 
passages, or the water from the lake to the basin 
which was to the east of the temple, or to any other 
part of the city. In the front of the temple there 
seems to have been a grand portico. Before this 
part there lay three pieces of red granite pillars, 
each being about fifteen feet long, and one of grey 
broken into two pieces; they were all three feet and 

a half in diameter. There are four pillars of the 
former sort in the mosque of St. John, at the vil- 
lage of Aiasalouck. I saw also a fine entablature ; 
and on one of the columns in the mosque thei-e is 
a most beautiful composite capital, which, without 
doubt, belonged to it. There are great remains of 
the pillars of the temple, which were built of large 
hewn stone, and probably cased with marble; but, 
from what I saw of one part, I had reason to con- 
clude that arches of brick were turned on them, 
and that the whole temj^le, as well as these pillars, 
was incrusted with rich marbles. On the stone- 
work of the middle grand apartment there are a 
great number of small holes, as if designed in order 
to fix the marble casing. It is probable that the 
statue of the gi-eat goddess Diana of the Ephesians 
was either in the grand middle comj^artment or 
opposite to it." 

The engraving of the Temple i-estored is princi- 
pally founded upon the descriptions of Pococke, 
who has given an imaginary ground-plan. 

The ' Antiquities of Ionia,' published by the 
Dilettanti Society, and the ' Voyage Pittoresque 
de la Gr6ce,' of M. Choiseul Gouffier, have fui-- 
nished the authorities for the other engravings of 
Ephesian remains. 

Of the modern population of Ephesus the follow- 
ing striking description was furnished by Chandler 
sixty years ago. The place is now far more deso- 
late and wretched : — 

" The Ephesians are now a few Greek peasants, 
living in extreme wretchedness, dependence, and 
insensibility ; the representatives of an illustrious 
people, and inhabiting the wreck of their greatness ; 
some, the substructions of the glorious edifices 
which they raised; some, beneath the vaults of 
the Stadium, once the crowded scene of their diver- 
sions ; and some, by the abrupt precipices in the 
sepulchres which received their ashes. We em- 
ployed a couple of them to pile stones, to serve 
instead of a ladder at the arch of the Stadium, and 
to clear a pedestal of the portico by the theatre 
from i-ubbish. We had occasion for another to dig 
at the Corinthian temple ; and, sending to the Sta- 
dium, the whole tribe, ten or twelve, followed ; one 


playing all the time on a nule lyro, ouJ at tituea 
striking the soumling-bonrv] with the fiugora of hia 
left hand iu concert with the btriugs. One of them 
had on a pair of saudald of goat-skin, laced with 
thongs, and not uncommon. After gnitifyiiig their 
curiosity, they returned Lack aa they came, with 
their musician iu front. Sucli are the present citi- 
zens of Ephedtis, and such is the condition to which 
that renowned city has been graduidly reiluced. It 
was a ruinous place when the Kmperor Justinian 
filled Constantinople with ita statues, and raiee<l tL e j 
cbuivh of St Sophia ou its columns. Siuco then ' 

it has been almost quite exhausted. A herd of 
goats was driven to it for shelter from the sun at 
noon ; and a noisy flight of crows from iU marble 
quarries seemed to insult its silence. We heard 
the jMirtridge call iu the area of the theatre and of 
the Stadium. The glorious pomp of its heathen 
woraliip is no longer reniembered ; and Chris- 
tianity, which w:is here nursed by a|>u8tles, and 
fostered by general counciU, tmtil it incre;i«od to 
fulness of xtittiro, barely lingem on in an existence 
hanllv v' " 



Coleridge has furnished the philosophy of all just criticism upon the Comedy of Errors in a 
note, which we shall copy entire from his Literary Remains : — 

" The myriad-minded man, our, and all men's, Shakspere, has in this piece presented us with a 
legitimate farce in exactest consonance with the jihilosophical principles and character of farce, as 
distinguished from comedy and from entertainments. A proper farce is mainly distinguished from 
comedy by the license allowed, and even required, in the fable, in order to produce strange and 
laughable situations The story need not be probable, it is enough that it is i:)Ossible. A comedy 
would scarcely allow even the two Antipholuses ; because, although there have been instances of 
almost indistinguishable Ukeness in two persons, yet these are mere individual accidents, casus ludentis 
naturce, and the verum will not excuse the invcnsimile. But farce dares add the two Dromios, and 
is justified in so doing by the laws of its end and constitution. In a Avord, farces commence in a 
postulate, which must be granted." 

This postulate granted it is impossible to imagine any dramatic action to be managed with more 
skill than that of the Comedy of Erroi-s. Hazlitt has pronounced a censure upon the play which is 
in reality a commendation : — " The curiosity excited is certainly very considerable, though not of the 
most pleasing kind. We are teased as with a riddle, which, notwithstanding, we try to solve." To 
excite the curiosity, by presenting a riddle which we should try to solve, was precisely what Plautus 
and Shakspere intended to do. Our poet has made the riddle more complex by the introduction of the 
two Dromios, and has therefore increased the excitement of our curiosity. But whether this excite- 
ment be pleasing or annoying, and whether the riddle amuse or tease us, entirely depends upon the 
degree of attention which the reader or spectator of the farce is disposed to bestow upon it. Hazlitt 
adds, " In reading the play, from the wuncness of the names of the two Antipholuses and 
the two Dromios, aa well from their being constantly taken for each other by those who see 
them, it is difiBcult, without a painful effort of attention, to keep the characters distinct in 
the mind. And again, on the stage, either the complete similarity of their persons and 
dress must produce the same perplexity whenever they first enter, or the identity of appear- 
ance, which the story suppose, will be destroyed. We still, however, having a clue to the 


difficulty, cau tell which is which, merely from the contnuHctions which ai-ise, as soou as the different 
p:irtiea be,'iu to speak ; aud wo are indemnified for the jierplexity and blunders into which we are 
thivwn, by seeing othera thrown into greater and almost inextricable ones." Hnzlitt lia-j here, almost 
undeaignedly, pointed out the source of the pleasure which, with an " effort of attention," — not a 
"painful eflort," we think,— a reader or spectator of the Coiroly of Errors is sure to receive from this 
drama. Wo huvo "a clue to the difficulty;" — wc know more than the actors in the drama; — we may 
be a little perjileied, but the deep perplexity of the chai-actera ia a constantly increasing triumph to 
»H. We have never seen the play ; but one who hsvs thus describes the effe.t:— " Until I saw it on 
the staijc, (nut ' 1 into an opoi-a,) I had not imagined the e\teut of I; ' ' tho drollery of 

them, their ui: . utinuanco, til), at the cud of the fourth act, they i. ■ liiuax with tho 

assistance of Dr. Pinch, when tho audience in their laughter rolled about like waves." " Mr. Brown 
adds, with great truth, " To the strange contrast of grave astonishment among the actors, with their 
laughable situations in the eyes of the spectator, who are let into the secret, is to be ascribed the 
irresistible effect" The spectators, the readei-s, have the clue, are let into the secret, by the story of 
the first Scene. Nothing can be more beautifully managed, or is altogether more Shaksperian, than 
the narrative of -Egcou ; and that narrative is so clear and so impressive, thnt the reader never forgets 
it amidst all the crroi-s aud perplexities which follow. The Duke who, like tho reader or spectator, 
haa heard the narrative, insUntly sees the real sfcite of things when the d£nouemcnt is approaching : — 

" Why. licre begins his morning story right." 

The reader or spectator has seen it all along, — ceit-uniy by au effort of attention, for without the effort 
the characters would be confounded like tue vain shadows of a morning dream ;— and, having seen it, 
it ia impossible, we think, that the constant readiness of the reader or spectator to solve the riddle 
should l>e other than pleasurable. It appears to ua that every one of au audience of the Comedy of 
Krrors, who keeps hia eyes ojien, will, after ho has become a little familiar with the persons of the two 
Antipholuses and the two Dromios, find out some clue by which he can detect a difference between 
cvch, ovt'si ' " the jn-actical contradictions which arise, as soou as the different parties begin to 

Bpoidi." S _, -^ys, " In such pieces we must always presuppose, to give an appearance of truth to 
the senses at least, that the parts by which the misunderstjindings are occasioned are played with 
masks ; and this tho poet, no doubt, observed." Whether ma-sks, jjroperly so called, were used in 
Shakspere's time in the representation of this play, we have some doubt. But, tmquestionably, each 
pair of persons selected to play the twins must be of tho same height, — with such general resem- 
blances of the features as may be made to appear identical by the colour and false hair of the tiring- 
room,— au'l be dressed with apparently jitrfect similarity. But let every care be observed to make the 
deception perfect, and yet the ol-werving spectator will detect a difference between each ; some 
pectiliahty of the roice, some " trick o' the eye," some dissimilarity in gait, some minute variation in 
dross. We once knew two adult twin-brothers who might have played tho Dromios without the least 
aids from the arts of the theatre. They were each stout, their stature was the same, each had a sort 
of shufflo in his walk, the voice of each was rough and unmusical, and they each dressed without any 
man fest peculiarity. One of them bad long been a resident in the country town where wo lived 
within a few doors of him, and saw hiiu daily ; the other came from a di-t ' . ..- . .-,y ^vjth our 
neighbour, tircat was the pcq>Iexity. It was jicrfectly impossible to li • u them, at 

first, when they were a|«rt ; and we well remember walking some distance with tho stranger, mis- 
tikinj him f^r his brother, aud not discovering tl>e nii.-*take (which he humoured) till we saw his total 
ignorance of the locality. But after seeing this Dromio eriaticut a few times the perplexity was at an 
end. There was a difference which was palpable, though not exactly to bo defined. If the features 
were alike, their expression was somewhat varied ; if their figures were the same, the one was some- 
what more erect than the other ; if their voices were similar, the one had a different mode of 
accentuation from the other; if they each wore a blue coat with brsiss buttons, the one was decidedly 
more slovenly than the other in his general appearance. If we had known them at all intimately, wc 
probably .'•' ' " ive ceased to think that the outward points of identity wt-rc even greater than the 
points of .. .1.0. We should have, moreover, learned the difference of their characters. It 
appears to us, then, that as this farce of real life was ver}' soon at an end, when we had become a littU 

* Sha);es2>eare'i Autobiograiihicai I'ovnis (Lc. By Oiarlcs Armiuigc Bronii. 
CostEMEs —Vol I. S 257 


familiar with the pecuUarities iu the persons of these twiu-brothers-so the spectator of the Comedy 
of Errors will very boou detect the differences of the Dromios and Autipholuses ; and that, while his 
curiosity is kept alive by the effort of attention which is necessary for this detection, the riddle will 
not only not tease him, but its perpetual solution will afford him the utmost satisfaction. 

But has not Sbakspere himself furnished a clue to the understanding of the Errors, by his mar- 
vellous skill iu the delineation of character? Some one has said that if our poet's dramas were printed 
without the names of the persons represented being attached to the individual speeches, we should 
know who is speaking by his wonderful discrimination iu assigning to every character appi-opriate 
modes of thought and expression. It appears to us that this is unquestionably the case with the 
characters of each of the twin-brothers in the Comedy of Errors. 

The Dromio of Syracuse is described by his master as 

" A trusty villain, sir; that very oft, 
■\Vlien I am dull with care and melancholy, 
Lightens my Inmiour with his merry jests." 

But the wandering Antipholus herein describes himself: he is a prey to "care and melancholy." lie 
nas a holy purpose to execute, which he has for years pursued without success :— 

" lie that commends me to mine own content 
Commends nie to the thing I cannot get. 
1 to the world am like a drop of water 
That in the ocean seeks another drop." 

Sedate, gentle, loving, the Antipholus of Syracuse is one of Shakspere's aminble creations. ^ He beats 
his slave according to the custom of slave-beating ; but he laughs with him and is kind to him almost 
at the same moment. lie is an enthusiast, for he falls in love with Luciana in the of his 
pei-plexities, and his lips utter some of the most exquisite poetry : — 

■' O, train me not, sweet mermaid, with thy note, 
To drown me in thy sister's flood of tears ; 
Sing, syren, for thyself, and I will dote : 
Spread o'er the silver waves thy golden hairs." 

But he is accustomed to habits of self-command, and he resolves to tear himself away even from the 
syren : — 

" But, lest myself he guilty to self-wrong, 
I '11 stop mine ears against the mermaid's song." 

As his perplexities increase, he ceases to be angry with his slave : — 

" The fellow is distract and so am I ; 
And here we wander in illusions : 
Some ble.ssed power deliver us from hence." 

Unlike the Menachmus Sosicles of Plautus, he refuses to dine with the courtezan. He is fain yet 
courageous when assaulted by the Merchant. When the Errors are clearing up, he modestly adverts 
to his love for Luciana ; and we feel that he will be hai)py. 

Antipholus of Ephesus is decidedly inferior to his brother, in the quality of his intellect and the 
tone of hi.s morals. He is scarcely justified in calling his wife " shrewish." Her fault is a too sensitive 
affection for him. Her feelings are most beautifully described in that address to her supposed 

husband : — 

" Come, I will fasten on this sleeve of thine : 
Tliou art an elm, my husband, I a vine ; 
, Whose weakness, married to thy stronger state. 

Makes me with thy strength to communicate : 
If aught possess thee from me, it is dross, 
Usurping ivy, briar, or idle moss." 

The classical image of the elm and the vine would have been sufficient to express the feelings of a fond 
and confiding woman ; the exquisite addition of the 

" Usurping ivy, briar, or idle moss," 

conveys the prevailing uneasiness of a loving and doubting wife. Antipholus of Ephesus has some' 
what hard measure dealt to him throughout the progress of the Errors ; — but he deserves it. His 


doors are shut afrainst Imu, it i. tr«o;-iu his impatience ho wouKl force his w.v \ut 1 I. 1 
agamst the rcmoustrauces of the good BalthaziU- : ' ''•'^' 

'• Your long experience of lier wisdom, 
Her sober virtue, years, and modestv, 
Plead on her pjirt some cause to you' unknown." 

He^eparta. but uot - iu patieaco ; "-he i. ccteut to dine f.-on. ho.ue. but not at " the Tiget." Hi^ 

" Tlint cliain will I bestow 
(Be it for nothing but to sjiitc my wit;) 
Upon mine hostess,"— 

" (<o lliou 
And buy a Tope's end; that will I bestow 
Among m> wife and her confederates." 

when he ha, ' '"' ""' '""' """"' ^' >"="<"" "'■ >■". .■>■■= quil* in chamaer; ™d 

•' Beaten the maids arow, and bound the doctor " 

irrt!::;::;r:;;:'^X;^^:^rEr ^^^""t ^'^ "-^ '^'^ ^^«-^- ^^ =^ -••''' - --t 

save his prince's life -and tht 1 ' "ll . . ""'"^ " '"° ''''"'"' ^''° ^""'^ "'^^''P «-''«" *° 

opposed to the A U^holus of S ' ^ ' L?;^'^ *^!r^''", '"""'' '""'^'^ "'^'"''^'''-^^ '« «'''>''"^"y 
he has no habits of'self-comufL" ji.U ■ " "-^'-^-'^'^e, nor gentle, nor iruly.loving;-that 

Of .. is solved, he ^v" .iir;:;::::-^!:::^^^;;::^ ^^ ""-^ ^" '^"^^ 

" a huge infectious troop 
Of pale distemperatures." 

temper; they each clin^ faithf..ll. .™' P.-"^'*'' ^^^^ ^^^^^ b^^'" -"^ beating with wondetfnl good 
diffe'ren;e in t'hequtli o'f ttet- mi'th ;:;^--tefa interests. But there is certainly a .narked 
to utter his jestslithLfinite"'^^^^^^^^^^ ^^^'^ ^'^ antithetical, striving 

iB prodigiously diverting :- discretion, and approaching a pun with a sly solemnity that 

" The capon burns, the pig falls from the spit: 
The clock hath struckcn twelve upon the bell ; 
My mistress made it one upon my cheek : 
, . _ ^''^ '8 so hot, because the meat is cold." 

" I have some marks of yours upon my pate, 
Some of my mistress' marks upon my shoulders. 
But not a thousand marks between you both " 

" n"'' f n "f '"" '"*' '^°°" ^'^^''^ "»>• '"'J I "hut out? 
Dro i. I erdy. your doors were lock'd, and vou shut out. 
Ani L. And did not she hersell revile me there ' 
Dro. E. Sans fable, she herself revil'd you there ' 

ill' E cvrl ""' I'" *'!"='"^"-"'-i1 "il, taunt, and scorn mef 
Dro.h. Certes.shed.d; the kitchen-vestal scorn'd you." 

gradi:;tr'' HrisTc'itu^oi '' ""r^^' ^' '^■'•-^^^^ ^^ ^^^^^ ^^-^^ *^« -^i--^ of hi., 

simUitudea. He males not the "l L 'T .'f '"'"'''' '''"*«' ""^"''^fc' --• -''^^ ^^ -^ q.ieer 
tnost with in-epres-sible volubilitv It ^ ^^' ""^ arranging a joke, but utters what comes upper- 

active exercise by hu ied r.ronunoi f '' '''' ^''^'''''^ -'* ' ""^^ ^^ have no doubt gave his tong, aa 

tions endun^ble I, rl^'ir rt^ Loor^t u eT^ "' '' T' ''^ ''''' ''' '^^ ^^^^^ 

asier. i.ook at the cUalogue id thn second Scene of Act ii., where 

o J 


Antiplioliis, after having repressed his jests, is drawn into a tilting-match of words with him, in which 
the merry slave has clearly the victory. Look, again, at his description of the " kitchen-wench," — 
coarse, indeed, in i'arts, but altogether irresistibly droll. The twin-brother was quite incapable of 
Buch a flood of fun. Again, what a prodigality of wit is displayed in his description of the bailiff ! 
His epithets are inexhaustible. Each of the Dromios is admirable in his way ; but w^e think that he 
of Syracuse is as superior to the twin-slave of Ephesus as our old friend Lauuce is to Speed, in the 
Two Gentlemen of Verona. These distinctions between the Antipholuses and Dromios have not, as 
far as we know, been before pointed out ; —but they certainly do exist, and ajipear to us to be defined 
by the great master of character with singular force as well as delicacy. Of course the characters of 
the twins could not be violently contrasted, for that would have destroyed the illusion. They must 

" Go liand in hand, not one liefoie iinotlicr.' 


iNoble Huntsmth, 


Statb oy THE Text, and Chronologt, op the Tamtno of the Shrew. 

The Taming of the Shrew was first printed in the folio collection of Shakspere's Playa in 1623 
But it is to be observed, although this play had not been previously published, in the entry of 
the books of the Stationers' Company of the claim of the publishers of this first collected edition to 
" Mr. William Shakespeare's Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies, bo many of the snid copies as are 
not formerly entered to other men," the Taming of the Shrew is not recited in the list. In the 
books of the Stationers* Company we have the following cntrj-. May 2, 1594: — 'Peter Sliorto. 
A pleaant conceyted hystorie called the Tayminge of a Shrowe.' In the same year 'A plesant 
conceited Historie called the Taming of a Shrew,' was printed by Peter Short for Cuthbert 
Barbie. We shall Lave occasion to speak fully of this play, which un'iuestionably preceded 
Shakspere's 'Taming of the Shrew.' On the 22nd January, lOOG, wo find an entry to 'Mr. Ling, 
of ' Taminge of a Shrew.' In 1607, Nicholas Ling published a new edition of the play which was 
printed for 'Cuthbert Burbio' in 1594. On the 19th November, 1607, John Smythick (or Smeth- 
wick) entered Hamlet, Komeo and Juliet, Love's Labour's Lost, and 'The Taminge of o Shrew.' 
Smethwick had become, by assignment, the proprietor of Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, and Love's 
Labour's Lost, which had previously been published by others; and ho ultimately became a pro- 
prietor of the first folio. The entry of 1G07 might possibly have secured his copyright in Shak- 
spere's 'Taming of the Shrew,' to which it might have referred, as ho euters three others of 
Shakspere's playa on the same day. But Ling, who did publbh the old 'Taming of a Shrew,' 
also enters with it Love's Labour's Lost, and Romeo and Juliet, in 1606. The entrj' of John Smeth- 
wick, although not varying from the entry of the preceding year by Ling, of the title of the ' Taming of 



a Shrew,' might, as we say, Lave referred to Shakspere's comedy; bi;t it might also have referred 
to a transfer of the eai'lier comedy from Ling. 

Malone originally assigned the Taming of the Shrew to as late a period as 160C. He was led to this 
determination by the entry at Stationers' Hall, by Sraethwick, in 1C07 ; by the fact that Meres does 
not mention this iilaj as Shakspere's in his list of 1598 ; and that the line 

" This is the way to kill a wife with kindness," 
may be taken to allude to the play of Thomas Heywood (of which the second edition appeared in 
1607,) of 'A Woman Killed with Kindness.' Malone subsequently assigned this comedy to 1596. Mr. 
Collier says, 'Although it is not enumerated by Meres, in 1598, among the plays Shakespeare had then 
written, and although in Act iv. Sc. i. it contains an allusion to Heywood's 'Woman Killed with 
Kindness,' * which was not produced until after 1600, Malone finally fixed upon 1596 as the date 
when the Taming of the Shrew was produced. His earlier conjecture of 1606 seems much more 
prohahle ; and his only reason for changing his mind was that the versification resembled the 'old 
comedies antecedent to the time' of Shakespeare, and in this notion he was certainly well-founded." t 
Malone's statement, with regard to the internal evidence of the date of this comedy, is somewhat 
fuller than Mr. Collier's quotation: — "I had suj^posed the piece now under consideration to have 
been written in the year 1606. On a more attentive perusal of it, and more experience in our 
author's style and manner, I am persuaded that it was one of his very early productions, and near, 
in point of time, to the Comedy of Errors, Love's Labour's Lost, and the Two Gentlemen of Verona. 
Tn the old comedies, antecedent to the time of our author's writing for the .stage, (if indeed they 
deserve that name,) a kind of doggrel measure is often found, which, as I have already observed, 
Shakspeare adopted in some of those pieces which were undoubtedly among his early composi- 
tions : I mean his Errors, and Love's Labour 's Lost. This kind of metre, being found also in the 
play before us, adds support to the supposition that it was one of his early productions." Mr. 
Collier, however, doubts whether the Taming of the Shrew can be treated altogether as one o( 
Shakspere's performances : — " I am satisfied," he says, " that more than one hand (perhaps at dis- 
tant dates) was concerned in it, and that Shakespeare had little to do with any of the scenes in which 
Katharine and Petruchio are not engaged." Farmer had previou.sly expressed the same opinion, 
declaring the Induction to be in our poet's best manner, and a great part of the play in his worst, 
or even below it. To this Steevens replies : — " I know not to whom I could imjDute this comedy, if 
Shakspeare was not its author. I think his hand is visible in almost every scene, though perhaps 
not so evidently as in those which pass between Katharine and Petruchio." Mr. Collier judges that 
" the underplot much resembles the dramatic style of William Haughton, author of an extant 
comedy, called 'Englishmen for my ]\Ioncy,' which was produced prior to 1598." 

It will be necessary for us, in the first instance, to take a connected view of the obligations of the 
writer of the ' Taming of the Shi'ew ' to the older play which we have already mentioned ; and this 
examination will dispose of that section of our Introductory Notice which we vtsually give under the 
head of ' Supposed Sources of the Plot.' 

'Tlie Taming of a Shrew,' first appeared in 1594, under the following title : ' A pleasant conceited 
Ilistorie called the taming of a Shrew. As it was sundry times acted by the Right honourable the 
Earle of Pembi'coke his servants. Printed at London by Peter Short, and are to be sold by Cuthbert 
Burbie, at his shop at the Royal Exchange, 1594.'+ The Comedy opens with an Induction, the charac- 
ters of which are a Lord, Slie, a Tapster, Page, Players, and Huntsmen. The incidents are precisely 
the same as those of the play which we call Shakspere's. We have inserted, in the Illustration 
of the Induction, a specimen of the dialogue of this other play. There is this difference in the 
management of the character of Sly in the anonymous comedy, that, during the whole of the 
performance of the ' Taming of a Shrew,' he occasionally makes his remarks ; and is finally carried 
back to the alehouse door in a .state of sleeji. In Shakspere we lose this most diverting personage 
before the end of the first Act. After our poet had fairly launched him in the Induction, and given 
a tone to his subsequent demeanour during the play, the performer of the character was perhaps 

' We really doubt -whether the line to which Jlr. Collier refers can be called an allusion to the title of Heywood's play. 
It is only the repetition of a coninion expression, from T.hich expression, -we believe, Heywood's play took its title. 

t History of Dramatic Poctrj', p- 78. 

I We copy this title from Mr. Collier's History of Dramatic Poetry. This edition was unknown to the commentiforf 
That of 160(5, which Steevens reprinted, has no material varianiuis Irom tins verv rare copy. 



allowed to continue the dialogue exteuiponilly. Wo doubt, by tho way, whether this wouUl have 

beeu permitted after Shakapeio had prescribed that the clowns should "speak no more than what it 

set down for them." 

The sceuo of the old ' Taming of a Shrew ' is laid at Athens ; that of Shakspero's at Padua. 

The Athens of the one and the Padua of the other arc resorts of learning; tho old play opening 

thus: — 

•• Wtlcome to Athens, my beloved friend. 
To Plato's schoul, and ArUtotlc's walks." 

Alfonso, a merchant of Athens, (the Baptista of Shakspere,) has three daughters, Kale, Emelia, 
and Phylemi!. Aurelius, son of the duko of Cestus, (Sestos,) is enamoured of one, Polidor of 
another, and Ferando (the Petrucio of Shakspere) of Kate, tho Shrew. The merchant hath sworn, 
before he will allow his two younger daughters to bo addressed by suitors, that 

" His eldest daughter first shall be espous'd." 

The wooing of the Kate of the old play by Ferando is exactly in the same spirit as the wooing by 
Petrucio ; so is the marriage ; so the lenten entertainment of the bride in Ferando's country- 
iiouso ; so tho scene with the Tailor and Haberdasher; so tho prostrate obedience of the tamed 
Shrew. The under-plot, however, is essentially different. The lovers of the younger sisters do 
not woo them in assumed characters ; though a merchant is brought to personate tho Duke of 
Cestus. The real duke arrives, as Vincentio arrives in our play, to discover the imposture ; and 
his indignation occupies much of the latter part of the action, with sufficient tediousness. All 
parties are ultimately happy and pleased ; and the comedy ends with the wager, as in Shakspere, 
about the obedience of the several wives, the Shrew pronouncing a homily upon the virtue and 
beauty of submission, which sounds much more hypocritical even than th;it of the Kate of our 
poet. We request our readers to turn to the specimens we have given, in the Illustrations to each 
Act, of the passages which are distinctly parallel to those of Shakspere. There oannot be a doubt that 
the anonymous author and Shakspere sometimes used the same images and forms of expression, — 
occasionally whole lines; the incidents of those scenes in which the process of taming the shrew is 
carried for\vard, are invariably the same. The audience would eijually enjoy the suqiriso and self- 
satisfaction of the drunken man when he became a lord ; equally the rough wooing of the master 
of "the taming school ; " rejoice at the dignity of the more worthy gender when the poor woman was 
denied "beef and mustard ; " and hold their sides with convulsive laughter, when the tailor was driven 
off with his gown and the haberda-sher with his cap. Shakspere took these incidents as he found them; 
perhaps, for the purposes of the stage, he could not have improved them. 

This undoubted resemblance involves some necessity for conjecture, with vcr}' little guide from 
evidence. The first and most obvious hypothesis is that ' The Taming of a Shrew ' was an older play 
than Shakspere's, and that he borrowed from that comedy. The question then arises, who was iti 
author ? 

In our Pictorial Edition of this play, published in October, 1839, we expressed an opinion that Robert 
Greene might have been the author of ' The Taming of a Shrew,' and that the charge supposed to be 
made by Greene against Shakspere in his ' Groat's-worth of Wit,' published after his death in 1592, of 
being ''an upstart crow, beautified with our feathers," had reference to a plagiarism from some play 
more unequivocallj' belonging to Greene than the plays upon which it was held that ' Henry VI.' was 
founded. The whole of this question afterwards underwent a much fuller examination by us in our 
' Es*\y on the Three Parts of Henry VI.' &c. in which our views were greatly modified with reference 
to the nature of Greene's complaint. But we may here, without anticipating that fuller dis- 
cussion, refer only to the point of Greene's probable authorship of ' The Taming of a Shrew.' 

The dramatic works of Greene, which h.-'.vo been collected as his, are only six in number ; and 
one was written in connexion wiih Lodge. The 'Orlando Furioso' is known to have been his, 
by having been mentioned by a contemporary writer. This play, in its form of publication, 
appears to us to bear a striking resemblance to the ' Taming of a Shrew.' The title of the first 
edition is a.s follows : ' The Historic of Orlando Furioso, one of the twelve Pieres of France. As it 
was plaid before the Quecnes Majestic. London, Printed by John Danter for Cuthbert Burbie 
and are to be sold at his Shop uere the Royal Exchange. 1594.' Compare this with the title o( 
ilie ' T^mmg of a Shrew.' Each is 'a H i stone ;' each is without an author's name; each is pub- 



lished by Cuthbert Burbie ; each is published in the same year, 1591. Might not the recent death 
of Greene, — the reputation which he left behind him, — the unhappy circumstances attending his 
death, for he perished in extreme poverty, — and the remarkable controversy between Nash and 
Harvey, in 1592, " principally touching Eobert Greene," — have led the bookseller to procure and 
publish copies of these plays, if they were both written by him ? It is impossible, we think, not to 
be struck with the striking resemblance of these anonymous performances, in the structure of the 
verse, the extravagant employment of mythological allusions, the laboured finery intermixed witli 
feebleness, and the occasional outpouring of a rich and gorgeous fancy. In the comic parts, 
too, it appears to us that there is an equal similarity in the two plays — a mixture of the vapid and 
the coarse, which looks like the attempt of an educated man to lower himself to an uninformed 
audience. It is very difficult to establish these opinions without being tedious; but we may com- 
pare a detached passage or two : — 

Orlando Funioso. 

" Oil. Is not my love like those purplc-colour'd swani^, 
That gallop by the coach of Cyntliia? 

Org. Yes, luatry is she, my lord. 

Orl. Is not her face silver'd like that milk-white shnpe, 
When Jove came dancing down to Scmele ? 

Ori/. It is, my lord. 

Oil. Tlien go thy ways, and climb up to the clouds, 
And tell Apollo, that Orlando sits 
Making of verses for Angelica. 
And if he do deny to send me down 
The shirt which Deianira sent to Hercules, 
To make me brave upon my wedding-day. 
Tell him, I'll pass the Alps, and up to Meroe, 
(I know he knows that watery lakish hill,) 
And pull the harp out of the minstrel's hands, 
And pawn it unto lovely Proserpine, 
That she may fetch the fair Angelica." 

Taming of a Shrf.w. 

" Fcr. Tush, Kate, these words add greater love in me. 
And make me think thee fairer than before : 
Sweet Kate, thou lovelier than Diana's pur])le rolu". 
Whiter than are the snowy Apennines, 
Or icy hair that grows on Horeas' chin. 
Father, I swear by Ibis' gcplden beak, 
JNIore fair and radiant is my bonny Kate, 
Than silver Xantluis when he doth embrace 
The ruddy Siuiois at Ida's feet; 
And care not thou, sweet Kate, how I be clad ; 
Thou Shalt have garments wrought of Median siik, 
Enchas'd with precious jewels fetch'd from far 
By Italian merchants, that with Russian stems 
Plough up huge furrows in the terrene main." 

Take a passage, also, 
the clowns : — 

)f the prose, or coniic, pa;'t.^ cf the two plays, each evidently intended for 

" Tom. Sirrah Ralph, an thou 'It go with me, I '11 let thee 
see the bravest madman that ever thou sawcst. 

Ralph. Sirrah Tom, I believe it was he tliat was at our 
town o' Sunday: I '11 tell thee what he did, sirrah. He came 
to our house when all our folks were gone to church, and 
there was nobody at home but I, and I was turning of the 
•pit, and he comes in and bade me fetch him seme drink. 
Now, I went and frtchcd him some; and ere I came again, 
by my troth, he ran away with the roast meat, spit and all, 
and so we had nothing but porridge to dinner. 

Tom. By my troth, that was brave; but, sirrah, he did so 
course the l)oys last Sunday; and if ye call him madman,, 
he'll run after you, and tickle your ribs so with flap of leather 
that he hath, as it passeth." 

"Sim. Boy, oh disgrace to my person! Zounds, boy, of 
your face, you have many boys with suehpickadenaunts, I am 
sure. Zounds, would you not have a bloody nose for this ? 

Boy. Come, come, I did but jest; where is that same piece 
( f pie that I gave thee to keep ? 

San. The piel Ay, you have more mind of your belly 
than to go see what your master does. 

Boij. Tush, 'tis no matter, man ; I prithee give it me, 1 
am very hungry I promise thee. 

San. Why you miy take it, and the devil burst you with 
it! one cannot save a bit after supper, but you are always 
ready to munch it up. 

Bo;/. Wliy, come, man, we shall have good cheer anon at 
the bride-house, for your master's gone to church to be mar- 
ried already, as there 's such cheer as passeth. 

San. O brave! I would 1 had eat no meet this week, for 
I have never a corner left in my belly." 

' The Historic of Alphonsus, King of Aragon,' — one of the plays published with Greene's 
name, after his death, — furnished a passage or two which may be compared with the old 'Taming 
of a Shrew :' — 

Ali'Uonsus King op Araoom. 

■Thoii Shalt ere long be monarch of the world. 
All christen'd kings, with all your pagan dogs. 
Shall bend Wieir knees unto Iphigena. 
The Indian soil shall be thine at command. 
Where every step thou settest on the ground 
Shall be received on tlie golden mines. 
Rich Pactolus, that river of account. 
Which doth descend from top of Tivole mount, 
Shall be thine own, and all the world beside." 

Taming op a Shrew. 

^" When 1 cross'd the bubbling Canibey, 

And sailed along the crystal Hellespont, 

I fill'd my coffers of the wealthy mines ; 

Where I did cause millions of labouring Moors 

To undermine the caverns of the earth. 

To seek for strange and new-found precious stonee, 

And dive into the sea to gather pearl. 

As fair as Juno oflTer'd Priam's son ; 

And you shall take your liberal choice of s'L" 


"Go, pack thou hence unto the Stygian lake, 
\nd make report unto thy traitorous sire, 
How well thou hast cnjoy'd the iliailcm, 
Which he by treason set upon thy head ; 
And if he ask thee who did send thee down, 
Alphonsus say, who now must wear thy crown. 
• • • • • 

What, is he gone? the devil break his neck I 
The fiends of hell torment his traitorous corpse! 
Is this the quittance of Helinus' grace, 
Which he did thow unto that thankless wrctih. 
That runagate, that rakchell, yea, that thief.'" 

" I swear by fair Cynthia's burning rays. 
By Merops', and by seven-mouthed Nile, 
Had I but known ere thou hadst wedded her, 
Were in thy the world's immortal soul. 
This angry sword should rip thy hateful chcrit, 
And hew thee smaller than the Libyan sands. 
• • • • • 

That damned villain that hatli deluded me, 
Whom I did send for guide unto my son. 
Oh that my furious force could cleave the earth, 
That I might muster bands of hellish fiends. 
To rack his heart and tear his impious soul ! " 

Malone Las conjectufcd tbi\t Grceue or Peelo wrote thi.s play ; but he has alao nssigned it to Kyd, 
ailoptiug Fafiuer's opiuioii. Upon the latter supposition. Mr. ('oilier observes that " there certainly is 
not anything like sufficient re.iomblance in point of style to warrant the belief." Greene possessed the 
re.idiest pen of all his contenipotixrios, and undoubtedly produced many more plays than the six which 
have come down to us as his. 

So far did we oxpre.'s our original opinion that Greene was the author of ' The Taming of a Shrew.' 
But that opinion underwent some considerable change, from the just respect which we entertained for 
the critical sagi\city and the diligence with which a correspondent iu the United States attempted to 
show that Marlowe wai the author of that play. We were of opinion that our correspondent had 
clearly made out that Marlowe has as good a title to the work as Greene— perhaps a better. Be it one 
or the other, they each belonged to the same school of poetry ; Shakspere created a new school. But 
there are passages and incidents in ' The Taming of a .Shrew ' which are unhke Marlowe ; such a« the 
scenes with Sly; these are unlike Greene also: they are fused more readily into Shakspere'n own 
materials, bc;::use they are natural. We now a second theory, alt<jgether different from our 
previous notion, from that of our corresjxtndent, and from that of any other writer. Was there not an 
older plaj' than ' The Taming of a Shrew,' which furnished the main plot, some of the characters, and a 
small part of the dialogue, both to the author of ' The Taming of a Shrew,' and the author of 'The 
Taming of the Shrew ? ' This play we may believe, without any violation of fact or probability, to have 
been used as rude material for both authors to work upon. There was competiton between them ; one 
produced a play for the Earl of Pembroke's servants— the other for the Lord Chamberlain's servants, 
out of some older play, much of which was probably improvisated by the Clown-, and whose main 
.action, the discipline of the Shrew, would be irresistibly attractive to a rough audience, without the 
i>ompous declamation of the one remodeller, or the natural poetry and rich humour of the other. 
Whether the author or improver of the pby printed in 1594 be Marlowe or Greene, there can be little 
question as to the characteristic superiority of Shakspere's work. His was, perhaps, a more careful 
.•e-modelling or re-creation. In ' The Taming of a Shrew ' it is not difficult to detert, especially in Sly 
and Sander, coarser things than belong either to Greene or Marlowe. 

But there is a third theory— that of Tieck — that ' The Taming of a Shrew ' was a youthful work of 
Shakspere himself. We leave this for the investigation of our readers. To our minds the old play 
is totally different from the imagery .-xnd the versification of Shakspere. 

We have to observe, in concluding this notice of the chronology of Shakspere's Taming of the 
Shrew, that the names of Petrucio and Licio are found in George Oascoigne's prose comedy, 'Tlio 
Suppoaes," which w.os first acted in 1566. Farmer considered that Shakspere borrowed from this 
source that part of the plot in which the Pedant personates Vincentio. Gascoigne's collected 
works were printed in 15S7. We have also to mention, as we did in the Introductory Notice to 
Hamlet, that iu Heuslowe'a accounts, found at Dulwich College, wo have an entry on the 11th 
June, 1594, of the performance at the theatre at Newington Butts of 'the tamingo of a shrcwe. 
Malone con.sidered this to bo the old pl.-iy. But it must be observed that the old play had been 
acted (as the title to the first edition expresses it, in that very year) by " the Earl of Pembroke, his 
servants." From the 3d June, 1594, Henslowe's accounts are headed as receipts at performances 
by "my lord admirell men and my lord chamberlen men." The "lord admirell" was the Earl of 
Nottingham; "the lortl chamberlen men" were the players of Shakspere's own company; and 
their oocup-ition of the theatre at Newington Butts w.os temporary, while the Globe Theatre was 
being erected. The Earl of Pembroke's servants were an entirely distinct cxunp&aj. This enti7 



of ' tlie taminge of a shrewe ' immedktely follows that of Hamlet ; ami we see nothing to shake 
our belief that both these were Shakspere's pla3's (Hamlet, of course, only the original sketch) 
pprformed by the Lord Chamberlain's servants. 

Peuiod of toe Action, and Manners. 

The Italy of Shakspere's own time is intended to be presented in this play. So thoroughly are the 
manners Italian, that a belief, and not an unreasonable one, has grown up, that Shakspere visited 
Italy before its composition. To a highly-valued friend, who had recently returned from Italy, we 
were much indebted for some interesting local illustrations, which greatly strengthen the conjecture 
that our poet had founded his accurate allusions in this play to Italian scenes and customs upon 
personal observation. These illustrations accompany Acts I., II., IV., and V., and are distin- 
guished by the initial (M). 

It is scarcely necessary for us here to add many remarks to these illustrations. Mr. Brown* has 
strenuously maintained the opinion that Shakspere did visit Ital^', before the composition of tlie 
Taming of the Shrew, the Merchant of Venice, and Othello. Nothing was more common in the 
time of Elizabeth than such a journey ; and to " swim in a gondola" was as familiar a thing then 
to those of the upper ranks, as to eat an ice at Tortoni's now. Nor were the needier men of letters 
alway.s debarred by their circumstances from acquiring that experience of Italian manners, which, 
while it enlarged their stores of knowledge, had not an equally favourable effect upon their morals. 
In 'The Repentance of Robert Greene,' which was pubUshed by Cuthbert Burby, in 1592, after 
Greene's death — wliich rare tract Mr. Dyce believes to be genuine — we have the following passage : — 
" For being at the University of Cambridge, I light amongst wags as bad as myself, with whom I 
crxisumed the flower of my youth, who drew me to travel into Italy and Spain, m which places 1 
saw and pi'actised such villainy as is abominable to declare." Shakspere, we now know, must 
have been comparatively wealthy before he was thirty, and fully able, as far as the expense was 
concerned, to have made the journey to Italy. He was. acquainted, moreover, with " divers of 
worship," to whom his comp-.uiionship in such a journey would have been a delight That he took 
the journey is perhaps more than can be proved ; that his description of Italian scenes and manners 
are more minute and accurate than if he had derived his information wholly from books, we have 
no doubt. This subject may, however, be better discussed when we have gone through all his 
Italian plays ; and may more properly find a place in his Life. 

* Shakspeare's Autoljiograpliical Poems. 

[King James 1., and Attendants, hawking..' 

ta.mi:;g of the siiiiEW 


It ia Bingular enough that tho InJiictiou to this comely affords in the ouly opportunity of pro 
senting our readers with tho costume of England during tho life of the Pout himself. Even in thia 
instance the scene of the comedy itself lies in Padua and its neighbourhood ; in illustration of tho 
costume of which famous city we give the figure of a lady from tho pages of J. M'iegel, and that of 
a Paduau bride, from Vecellio'a work, .so often (juoted.* Tho principal characteristic of tho latter ia 
the hair hanging down the Lack in natunil profusion ; a fashion in bridal array very prevalent 
throughout Europe during the middle ages. The Induction, we repeat, enables us to introduce an 
English nobleman of Shakspcrc's day in his hunting garb, with his attendants, fr jm ' The Noble 
Art of Venerie,' printed in IGll; an English lady of the same date, from a painting by Mark 
Uerrard ; James the First, and attendants, hawking, from 'A Jewell for Uentrie/ 1614; and n 
country ale-wife, from Strutt's ' Dress and Habits,' the badges of whose calling were a white apron 
and a scarlet petticoat. 

• The male costume of Pailua, given by Vecellio, is only that of olUcial personages : but the trunk-ho^e, lonff-bellled 
doublet, short cloak, prcciM' ruff, and sugarioaf rap or high velvet bonnet, appear to h.nvc been woin ihroughoul Lumlardy 
and the northern Italian states at this poriod. fide Merita:. t of Venice, Uihello, &c. 



(*t. L«Cj and U'j»iet».J 







Christopher Slt, a drunken Tinker. 

lloiless, Page, Playert, Huntsmen, and other Semanls. 

'SCENE I. — Be/ore an Alehouse on a Heath. 

Enter Hostess and Sly. 

Sli/. I '11 phecse' you, iu faith. 

Host. A pair of stocks, you rogue ! 

Sly. Y' are a baggage ; the Slys** are no rogues : 
Look iu the chronicles, wc came in with Richard 
Conqueror."^ Therefore, paucas pallabris ; ^ let 
tlie world slide : Sena .' 

• Pheete. Joli: " To pheete. or ftate, is to sepa- 

rate a twijt inio ». ;9." He deriTedthis explanation 

•if I he word from S^r X. Smith, who, in his book ' De Aniilico,' lays, " To feize means infila deducere." 
G.flTord aflinnj that it is a common word in the wc^t of 
England, meanini; to beat, to chasthe, to humble. In the 
latter sense Shakspcre uses it in Troilus and Crcssida : " An 
he be proud with me, I'll ph-ese his pride." Sbakspere 
found the word in the old ' Taminjr of a Slircw." 

b SIgs. This is ordinarily printed Sties; but such a 
change of the plural of a proper name is clearly wrong. 

c The tinker was right in boasting of the antiquity of his 
fanii'.v, though he has no precise recollection of the name of 
the Conqueror. Sltj and sleigh are the same, corresponding 
with ileight. The Slijs or Sleighs were skilful men — cunning 
of hand. We arc informed that Sly was anciently a common 
name in Shakspere's own town. 

d Paucas pallabris— pocat pallabroM-ftK tajrds, a they 

Host. You will not pay for the glasses you 
have burst ! * 

Sly. No, not a denier : Go by, S. Jerooiiuy, 
— Go to thy cold bed, and warm tlicc.'' 

Host. I know my remedy, I must go fetch the 
thirdborough.' \_Exit. 

have it in Spain. Sessa, in (he same way, is theceiiaofthe 
Spaniards — -be quiet. 

* Burst — broken. John of Gaunt "4ur«/ Shallow's head 
for crowding in among the marshal's men." 

b This sentence is generally printed, " Go by, says Jero- 
nimy; — Go to thy cold bed," &c. Theobald pointed out 
that in the old play of Hieronymo there is the expression 
" Go by, >io by; " and that the speech of Sly was in ridicule 
of the passage. Mason, to confirm this, altered the "Goby 
S. Jeroniniie" iT the original copy to " Go by, says Jero- 
nimy." The Cambridge editors suggest that the reading is 
" Go by, Jeronimy," the S. having been mistaken for a 
note or exclamation. It is usually printed a.s a note of in- 

c Thirdborough. In the original folio, this is, by mistake, 
printed hcadborough, by which the humour of Sly's answer 
is lost. The thirdborough was a petty constable; and, from 
the following passage in 'The Constable's Guide,' 1771, the 
name appears, in recent times, to have been peculiar to 
Warwickshire: "There are in several counties of this realm 
other oflictrs; that is, by other titles but not much inferior 
to our constables ; as, in WarwicksUire, a thirdborough." 




[SctNK I. 

S'.i/. Third, or fourth, or fifth borough, I'U 
answer him by la\y : I '11 not budge an incli, 
boy ; let him come, and kindly. 

[Lies down on the ground, and falls asleep. 

Wind horns. Enter a Loud from Inmli/if/, with 
his Train. 

Lord. Huntsman, I charge thee, tender well 

my hounds : 
Brach'^ Merriman, — the poor cm* is emboss'd ; 
And couple Clowder vriih. the deep-mouth'd 

Saw'st thou not, boy, how Silver made it good 
At the hedge comer, in the coldest fault ? 
I would not lose the dog for twenty pound. 
1 linn. Why, Belman is as good as he, my 

He cried upon it at the merest loss, 
And twice to-day pick'd out the didlest scent : 
Trust me, I take him for the better dog. 

Lord. Thou art a fool ; if Echo were as fleet, 
I would esteem him worth a dozen such. 
But sup them well, and look unto them all ; 
To-morrow I intend to hunt again. 

1 Hun. I will, my lord. 

Lord. What's here? one dead, or drunk? See, 
doth he breathe ? 

2 Hun. He breathes, my lord : Were he not 

warm'd with ale. 
This were a bed but cold to sleep so soundly. 
Lord, O monstrous beast ! how like a swine 

he lies ! 
Grim death, how foul and loathsome is thine 

image I 
Sirs, I will practise on this drunken man. 
What think you, if he were convey'd to bed,- 
Wrapp'd in sweet clothes, rings put upon his 

A most delicious banquet by his bed. 
And brave attendants near him when he wakes. 
Would not the beggar then forget himself ? 

1 Hun. Believe me, lord, I think he cannot 


2 Hun. It would seem strange unto him when 

he wak'd. 

* Brack. In one instance (Lear, Act in. Sc. v.), Sliak- 
spere uses this word as indicating a doj; of a particular 
species : — 

" Mastiff, greyhound, mongrel grim, 
Hound or spaniel, brack or lym." 

But he in other places employs it in the way indicated in an 
old book on sports, — 'The Gentleman's Recreation.' — "A 
brack is a mannerly-name for all hoimd bitches." Vie should 
have thought that the meaning of this passage could not 
have been mistaken. The lord is pointing out one of his 
l)ack — " Brach Merriman," — adding, " the poor cur is evi- 
boss'd," — that is, swollen liy hard running. Ritson, however, 
would read — "Bathe Merriman," — and Hanmer, " Leeck 


Lord. Even as a flattering dieam, or worth- 
less fancy. 
Then take him up, and manage well the jest : 
Carry him gently to my faii-est chamber. 
And hang it round with all my wanton pictures : 
Balm his foul head in warm distilled waters, 
And burn sweet wood to make the lodging sweet • 
Procure me music ready vhen he wakes. 
To make a dulcet and a heavenly sound ; 
And if he chance to spea2v, be ready straight, 
And, with a low submissive reverence. 
Say, — What is it your honour will command ? 
Let one attend him with a silver bason, 
Full of rose water, and bestrew'd with flowers ; 
Another bear the ewer, the third a diaper. 
And say, — Will 't please your lordship cool your 

hands ? 
Some one be ready with a costly suit. 
And ask him what apparel he will wear ; 
Another tell him of his hounds and horse. 
And that his lady mourns at his disease : 
Persuade him that he hath been lunatic ; 
And, when he says he is — ,'^ say, tliat he dreams, 
For he is nothim; but a might v loi'd. 
This do, and do it kindly,'' gentle sirs ; 
It w ill be pastime passing excellent, 
If it be husbanded with modesty, 

1 Hun. My lord, I wan-ant you, we '11 play 

our part. 
As he shall think, by our true diligence. 
He is no less than what we say he is. 

Ijord. Take him up gently and to bed with him ; 
And each one to his ofiBce, when he wakes. 

\_Some bear out Sly. A trumpet sounds. 
Sirrah, go see what trumpet 't is that sounds : 

[Exit Servant. 
Belike, some noble gentleman, that means, 
Travelliug some jourjaey, to repose him here. 

Re-enter a Servant. 

How now ? who is it ? 

Serv. An it please your iiouour, 

Players that oiler service to your lordship. 

Lord. Bid thein come near : 

Enter Plavers. 

Now, fellows, you are welcome. 
Flayers. We thank your honour. 
jA)rd. Do you intend to stay with me to-nighf ? 

2 Elay. So please yooi" lordship to accept our 


» And when //<? sai/s he is — . The dash is probably in- 
tended to indicate a blank. It is as if the lord had said, 
" And when he says he is So and So," when he tells his 
name. Steevens would read, "And when he sayg he's 
poor ; " Johnson, " And when he says he's Slij." 

b Kindly, naturally. 



[ScENt. II. 

Lord. With all my heart. — This fellow I re- 
Since ouce he play'd a farmer's eldest sou ; — 
'Twas where you woo'd the gentlewoman so well : 
I have forgot your uamc; but, sure, that part 
Was aptly titled, and natundly perform'd. 

1 Plat/? I think, 't was Soto that your honotir 

iMi-d. 'Tis very true; — thou diiUt it excel- 
lent. — 
Well, you are come to me in happy time ; 
The ratiicr for I have some sport in hand, 
^\Tiereiu your cunning can assist me much. 
There is a lord will hear you play to-night : 
But I am doubtful of your modesties ; 
Lest, over-eyeing of his odd behaviour, 
(For yet his honour never heard a jilay,) 
You break into some merry passion. 
And so offend him ; for I tell you, siis. 
If you should smile, he grows impatient. 

1 Play. Fear not, my lord; we can contain 
Were he the veriest antic in the world. 

Lord. Go, sirrah, take them to the buttery, 
iVnd give them friendly welcome every one : 
Let them want nothing that my house affords. — 
\^ExeuiiC Servant ami J'layers. 
Sirrah, go you to Bartholomew my page, 

\_To a Servant. 
And see him drcss'd in all suits like a lady : 
That done, conduct him to the dnmkard's cham- 
And call him madam, do him obeisance. 
Tell him from me, as he will win my love, 
lie bear himself with honourable action, 
Such as he hath observ'd in noble ladies 
Unto their lords, by them accomplished : 
Such duty to the drunkard let him do, 
With soft low tongue, and lowly courtesy ; 
And sav, — What is 't vour honour will com- 

Wherein your lady, and your humble wife, 
Mav show her dutv, and make known her love ? 
And then, with kind cmbracenu-nfs, temiiting 

And with declining hcail into his lx)som, 
Bid him shed tears, as being overjoy 'd 
To see her noble lord restored to health. 
Who, for this seven years, hath esteemed him 
No better than a poor and loathsome beggar : 

* 1 Plai). In ttic original ttii» line is given to Sinckln. 
ThU was the name of a pUter of inferior parts in Shalcspcrc's 
company. The lame performer is aUo mcntioneU in the 
quarto edition of Henry IV., Part II., ks also in Henr> VI. 
Solo is the name .f a character in Heaumont and FKtcher's 
'Woman rita»rd ; ' but it is very questionahle whether 
Shakspere alludid to this play. 


And if the boy have not a woman's gift, 

To rain a shower of commanded tears. 

An onion will do well for such a shift ; 

Which in a napkin being close convey'd, 

Shall in despite enforce a watery eye. 

Sec this despatch'd with all the haste thou canst ; 

Anon 1 '11 give thee more instructions. 

[Z,>/V Servant. 
I know the boy will well usurp the grace. 
Voice, gait, and action of a gentlewoman : 
I long to hear him call the drunkard husband ; 
And how my meu will stay themselves from 

When they do homage to this simple peasant. 
I'll in to counsel them : haply, my presence 
May well abate the over-merry spleen. 
Which otherwise would grow into extremes. 


SCENE 11.—--/ Bedchamber tii the Lord's 

Sly is discovered in a rich night-gotcn, with At- 
tendants ; some xcilh apparel, others icith bason, 
ewer^ and other appurtenances. Enter Lord, 
dressed like a servant. 

Sly. For God's sake, a pot of small ale. 

1 Sero. Will 't please your lordship drink a cup 

of sack ? 

2 Sert. Will 't please your honour taste of 

these conserves ? 

3 Sert. "Wliat raiment will your honour wear 

to-day ? 

Sly. I am Christophero Sly. Call not me — 
honour, nor lordship : I never drank sack in my 
life ; and if you give me any consenxs, give me 
conserves of beef: Ne'er ask me what raiment 
I '11 wear : for I have no more doublets than 
backs, no more stockings than legs, nor no more 
shoes than feet ; nay, sometime, more feet than 
shoes, or such shoes as my toes look through the 

Lord. Heaven cease this idle humour in your 
honour ! 
0, that a mighty man o^ such descent, 
Of such possessions, and so high esteem. 
Should be infused with so foul a spirit ! 

Sly. What! would you make me mad? Am 
not I Christopher Sly, old Sly's son of Burton- 
heath ; ' by birth a pedlar, by education a card- 
maker, by transmutation a bear-herd, and now 
by present profession a tinker? Ask Marian 
Hacket, the fat alewife of Wincot,'* if she know 
me not : if she say I am not fourteen pence on 
the score for sheer ale, score me up for tie 




[Scene II 

Ijingest knave iu Christendom. What ! I am 
not bestraught : "' Here 's 

1 Sere. 0, this it is that makes your lady 


2 Serv. 0, this it is that makes your servants 

Lord. Hence comes it that your kindi-ed shun 
your house, 
As beaten hence by your strange lunacy. 
O, noble lord, bethink thee of thy birth ; 
Call home thy ancient thoughts from banish- 
i\jid banish hence these abject lowly dreams. 
Look how thy servants do attend on thee. 
Each in his office ready at thy beck. 
Wilt thou have music ? hark ! Apollo plays, 

And twenty caged nightingales do sing : 
Or vrilt thou sleep ? we '11 have thee to a couch, 
Softer and sweeter than the lustful bed 
On purpose trimm'd up for Semiramis. 
Say, thou wilt walk : we will bestrew the ground : 
Or wilt thou ride ? thy horses shall be trapp'd, 
Tlieir harness studded all with gold and pearl. 
Dost thou love hawking ? thou hast hawks will 

Above the morning lark : Or wilt thou hunt ? 
Thy hounds shall make the welkin answer them. 
And fetch shrill echoes from the hollow earth. 

1 Sere. Say, thou wilt course ; thy gi'ey- 

hounds are as swift 
As breathed stags, ay, fleeter than the roe. 

2 Serv. Dost thou love pictures ? we will fetch 

thee straight 
Adonis, painted by a running brook ; 
And Cytherea all in sedges hid. 
Which seem to move and wanton with her breath. 
Even as the waving sedges play with wind. 

Lord. We'll show thee lo, as she was a maid; 
And how she was beguiled and surpris'd. 
As lively painted as the deed was done. 

3 Serv. Or Daphne, roaming through a thorny 

wood ; 
Scratching her legs that one shall swear she 

bleeds : 
And at that sight shall sad Apollo weep. 
So workmanly the blood and tears are drawn. 
Lord. Thou art a lord, and nothing but a 

lord : 
Thou hast a lady far more beautiful 
Than any woman iu this waning age. 

1 Sere. And, till the tears that she hath shed 

for thee, 
Like envious floods o'cr-rau her lovely face, 

* Btstraiight, svnonytnous with dUtraught, di-Str.ictccJ. ' 

She was the fairest creature iu the world ; 
And yet she is infei'ior to none. 

Slj/. Am I a lord ? and have I such a lady ? 
Or do I di-eam, or have I dream'd till now ? 
I do not sleep : I see, I hear, I speak : 
I smell sweet savours, and I feel soft things : — 
Upon my life, I am a lord, indeed ; 
And not a tinker, nor Christopher Sly. 
Well, bring our lady hither to oui- sight ; 
And once again, a pot o' the smallest ale. 

2 Serv. Will 't please your mightiness to wash 

youi" hands ? 
[SeiTants present an eicer, bason, and 
0, how we joy to see your wit restor'd ! 
O, that once more you knew but what you are ! 
These fifteen years you have been in a dream ; 
Or, when you wak'd, so wak'd as if you slept. 
Sly. These fifteen years ? by my fay, a goodly 
But did I never speak of all that time ? 

1 Serv. yes, my lord; but very idle words : — 
For though you lay here in this goodly chamber. 
Yet would you say ye were beaten out of door ; 
And rail upon the hostess of the house ; 
And say, you would present her at the leet. 
Because she brought stone jugs and no seal'd 

quarts : ^ 
Sometimes you would call out for Cicely Hacket. 
Sly. Ay, the woman's maid of the house. 

3 Serv. Why, sir, you know no house, nor no 

such maid ; 
Nor no such men, as you have reckon'd up, — 
As Stephen Sly, and old John Naps of Greece, 
And Peter Turf, and Henry Pimpernel! ; 
And twenty more such names and men as these, 
Wliicli never were, nor no man ever saw. 

Sly. Now, Lord be thanked for my good 
amends ! 

All. Amen. 

Sly. I thank thee ; thou sbalt not lose by it. 

Enter the Page, as a lady, tcith Attendants. 

Page. How fares my noble lord ? 

Sly. Marry, 1 fare well ; for here is cheer 

Where is my wife ? 

Page. Here, noble lord. What is thy will 

with her ? 
Sly. Are you my wife, and will not call me 

husband ? 

* At the leet, or court-leet, of a manor, the jurj' presented 
those who used false weights and measures; and, amongst 
others, those who, like the "fat alewife of AVincot," ustd 
jugs of irregular capacity instead of the sealed or lirensec 


.sDcctios] TAMING OF 

THE SHREW. * [Sci»i. ii. 

My men should call uic lonl ; I am your good- 

so long. But 1 would be loath to fidl into my 


dreams again. I will therefore tarry, in despite 

I*age. My hushaud aud my lord, my lonl and 

of the Jlcsh and the blood. 

husband ; 

I am your wife in all obedience. 

Enter a Servant. 

SUj. 1 know it well ; What must I call her ? 

Serv. Your honour's players, hearing your 

Lord. Madam. 


Sli/. Al'cc madam, or Joan madam ? 

Arc conjc to play a pleasant comedy. 

Lord. Madam, and nothing else ; so lords call 

For BO your doctors hold it very meet : 


Seeing too much sadness hath congeal'd your 

Sly. Madam wife, they say that I have 



And melancholy is the nurse of frenzy, 

Aud slept above some fifteen year or more. 

Therefore, they thougiit it griod you hear a play, 

Vaije. ks, and the time seems thirty unto me ; 

And frame your mind to mirth and merriment. 

Being all this time abandon'd from your bed. 

AVhich bars a thousand harms, and lengthens 

Sly. 'T is much. Servants, leave me and her 



Sl</. Marry, I will let them play : Is it not a 

.Madam, undress you, and come now to bed. 

commonty, a Christmas gambol, or a tumbling- 

Pagf. Thrice noble lord, let me entreat of you 

trick ? 

To pardon me yet for a night or two ; 

Page. No, my good lord : it is more pleasing 

Or, if not so, until the sun be set : 

stuff. ' 

For your physicians have expressly charg'd. 

Shf. What, household stuff? 

In peril to incur your former malady, 

Page. It is a kind of history. 

That I should yet absent me from your bed : 

Sly. Well, we '11 see 't : Come, madam wife, 

I hope, this reason stands for my excuse. 

sit by my side, and let the world slip ; we shall 

Sly. Ay, it stands so, that 1 may hardly tarry 

ne'er be younger. \Thty sit dovn. 

'-izf »*^.:. . 


'■^V-^- - 





• ' i^-^^lsSS^ 



Ft ^ 



^ ^ ^ 

i^p^ ■ 

'" A 



[U<utoii-on-the- Heath ] 



' Scene I.—" Before an Alehouse on a Heath." 

In the old play of the ' Taming of a Shrew,' of 
which we have preaenlcd au analysis in the Intro- 
ductory Notice, we find the outline of Shakspere's 
most spirited Induction. There are few things in 
onr poet which more decidedly bear the stamp of 
his peculiar genius than this fragment of a comedy, 
if we may so call it ; and his marvellous superiority 
over other writers is by nothing more distinctly 
exhibited than by a comparison of this with the 
parallel Induction in the old jjlay. It must be 
observed, that this old play is by no means an 
ordinary performance. It is evidently the work 
of a very ambitioris poet. The passage, for example, 
in which the lord directs his sei-vants how to effect 
the tran.sformation of Sly is by no means deficient 
in force or harmony. But compare it with the 
similar passage of Shaksijere, beginning — 

" Sirs, T will practise on this drimken man," 

aud we at once see the power which he jjossessed 
of adorning aud elevating all that he touched. It 
will be necessary for us to furnish several examples 
of the old play ; and it will be more convenient, 
therefore, to the reader, if we give them in the 
Illustrations, instead of the Introductory Notice. 
We first select the opening scene : — 

Enter a Tapster, beating out of his doors Slie, driinK-en. 
Tap. You whoreson drunken slave, you had best be gone, 
And empty your drunken paunch somewhere else, 
For in tliis house thou shall not rest to-night. [£x!<Taister. 

Slie. Tilly vally, by crisee, Tapster, I'll fese you anon. 
Fill's the t'other pot, and all's paid for, look you. 
I do drink it of mine own instigation : [Omne bene. 

Here 1 "U lie a while : why, Tapster, I say. 
Fill 's a fresh i-ushen here : 
Heigh ho, here's good warm lying. [He falls asleep. 


F.nler a S'ublcman and kU Men /rom hunting. 
Lord. Now that tlie gloomy ihsdow of the night. 

Longing to view Orion'* ilrisUng look*. 

Leapt from th' antarctic world unto the sky, 

And dims the welkin with her pitchy breath, 

And darksome nijiht o'er>hadei the cry» hc.ivens, 

Here break we off our hunting for to night. 

Couple up the hounds, let us hie uj homo, 

And bid the hi.: thini mealed well. 

For they have . i it well to-d.iy. 

llut soft, » allow i» this lief heref 

Or is he .1 o he doth lackf 

Strr. My lord, 't is nothing but a drunken sleep ; 

His head is too heavy for his body, 

And he hath drur.H so much that he can go no further. 
Lord. Fye, how the slavish villain stinks of drink ! 

Ho, »irrah, arise. What I so sound asleep f 

Go, take him i.p, and bear him to my house. 

And boar him easily for fear he wake, 

And in my faire>t chamber nmke a lire, 

And set a sumptuous banquet on the board, 

And put my richest garments on his back, 

Then set him at the table in a chair. 

When that is done, against he shall awake. 

Let heavenlr music play about him still. 

Go two of you away, and bear him hence. 

And then I IX tell you what I have devised ; 

But see in any case you wake him not. [Exeunt two iriM Sli e. 

Now take my cloak, and eive me one of yours. 

All fellows now, and see you take me so : 

For we will wait upon this drunken man. 

To tee hii countenance when he lioth awake. 

And find himself clothed in such attire, 

With heavenly music sounding in his ear*. 

And such a banquet set before his eyes. 

The fellow sure will think he is in heaven: 

But we will [be] about him when he wakes. 

And tee you call him lord at every word, 

And olTer thou him his horse to ride abroad. 

And thou hit hawks, and hounds to hunt the deer. 

And I will ask what suits he means to wear, 

And whatsoe'er he taith, tec you do not laugh. 

But ttill persuade him that he is a lord. 


then enter, and Smuhr, a clown, is 
i siH-akof. The scene, when Slie 

awakes ia Lis loi-.Uy giiise, succeeds. Compare it 
with the rich jHutry an.l the even richer humonr 
of Sly (reminding; us, as Hazlitt well observes, of 
Sancho Panza). The Stie o( the old play is but a 
vul:,^nr tinker, the lord and attendants somewhat 
fustian ranters : — 

EmlfT two n-itk a table and a banquet on it, and tiro olhm tcil', 
Slii ojleep ift a ekair, riekty appareird, and the mutic 

Oif S- tim'i, now at call my lord, 
■^ »» ready as he will'd it. 

•>ine upon the board. 
.\nd then 1 "11 go fetch my lord presently. 


Enter Ike Lord and hU Men. 

Lord. How now • what ! it all thingt ready • 

Om*. Yea, my lord. 

Lord. Then tound the music, and I HI wake him straight, 
And »co y-u do as erst I gave in charge. 
^^ 'i"^. he sleeps soundly, my lord. 

. :rr, give't a little tmal! ale: heigh-ho. 

Lord. Here's wine, my lord, the purest of the grai-- 

Slf. For which lonlr 

Lord. Tot youi honour, mjr lord. 

SI . Who, I f ,\m I a lord? Jeiut, what flni eppnrel .'■.n.t 
I got! 

Lord. More richer far your honour hath to wi^ar. 
And if it please you I will fetch them straight. 

ITi/. And if your honour ple.ise to ride abroad, 
I 'II fetch your lusty steeds more iwift of pace 
Than winged Pegasus in all his pride. 
That ran so swifily over Persian plains. 

Tom. And if your honour plcaic to hunt the deer, 
Your hounds tfand ready coupled at the door, 
Who in running will o'ertake the roc, 
And make the long brcitli'd tiger broken-winded. 

Sly. By the masi, I think 1 am a lord indeed. 
What '» thy name f 

Lord. Simon, an if it plea<e your honour. 

Slif. Sim, that's much to say Simion, or Sininn. 
Put forth thy hand and fill the pot. 
Give me thy hand, Sim ; am I a lord indeed J 

Lord. Ay, my gracious lord, and your lovely lady 
Long time hath mourned for your absence here. 
And now with joy behold where she doth come 
To cratuKile your honour's safe return. 

» Scene I.—" niiat think you, if he irae conm/d 
to bed.-' 

_ The story upon which this Induction is founded 
in all probability had an E.-Lstoni origin. 'The 
Sleeper Awakened,' of the Thousjind and One 
lights, 13 conjectured by Mr. Lane, in the notes to 
his adminible tnxnslation, not to be a genuine tale. 
Its chief and best portion being "an historical anec- 
dote related as a fact." J[r. Lane,— " The 
author by whom I have found tho chief jwrtion of 
this tile related as an historiail anecdote is El-Is- 
hakee, who finished his lii.storv shortly before tho 
close of the reign of the 'Osmdnlee Sultdn Mustafa 
apiwreutly in the year of the Flight' 1032 (a.d. 
1623). He does not mention his authority and 
whether it U related by an older historian, I do 
not know ; but perhaps it is founded upon fact " 
Our re