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Thy overflow of good converts to bad?; .
York. So shall my virtue be his vice's bawd ;
sake let me in. BOLING. What shrill-voic'd suppliant makes this
eager cry? Duch. A woman, and thine aunt, great king ;
'tis l. Speak with me, pity me, open the door ; A beggar begs, that never begg'd before. BOLING. Our scene is alter'd, --- from a serious
thing, And now chang'd to The Beggar and the King',
7 Thy overlow of good converts to bad,] Mr. Theobald would read :
converts the bad." STEEVENS.
Mr. Theobald did not understand it. “The overflow of good in thee is turned to bad in thy son; and that same abundant goodness in thee shall excuse his transgression." TYRWHITT.
8 — DIGRESSING song] Thus the old copies, and rightly. So, in Romeo and Juliet:
“ Digressing from the valour of a man." To digress is to deviate from what is right or regular. Some of the modern editors read:-transgressing. Steevens.
9 - The Beggar and the King.) The King and the Beggar seems to have been an interlude well known in the time of our author, who has alluded to it more than once. I cannot now find that any copy of it is left. Johnson.
“ The King and Beggar” was perhaps once an interlude ; it was certainly a song. The reader will find it in the first volume
My dangerous cousin, let your mother in;
YORK. If thou do pardon, whosoever pray,
Enter DUCHESS. Duch. O king, believe not this hard-hearted
man; Love, loving not itself, none other can. YORK. Thou frantick woman, what dost thou
make here ?? Shall thy old dugs once more a traitor rear ? Duch. Sweet York, be patient: Hear me, gentle liege.
Kneels. BOLING. Rise up, good aunt. Duch.
Not yet, I thee beseech : For ever will I kneel upon my knees, And never see day that the happy sees,
7612. from Riche Copheti
of Dr. Percy's collection. It is there entitled, King Cophetua and the Beggar Maid ; and is printed from Rich. Johnson's Crown Garland of Goulden Roses, 1612, 12mo. where it is entitled, simply, A Song of a Beggar and a King. This interlude, or ballad, is mentioned in Cynthia's Revenge, 1613 :
“ Provoke thy sharp Melpomene to sing
“The story of a Beggar and the King.” Steevens. · Thou frantick woman, what dost thou make here ?] So, in The Merry Wives of Windsor:
“What make you here?” Again, in Othello:
“Ancient, what makes he here?” MALONE.
- They would change their state
Till thou give joy; until thou bid me joy,
Kneels. Ill may'st thou thrive, if thou grant any grace ?! Duch. Pleads he in earnest ? look upon his
Boling. Good aunt, stand up.
Nay, do not say-stand up;
The present metaphor is surely not more violent; it gives indeed a spirit and force to the line which is destroyed by the other phrase ; to which it is a sufficient objection to ask, on what but her knees could the Duchess kneel?
By saying that she will for ever walk upon her knees, she means she will never rise more, and ever move from place to place on her knees, till the king has granted her request.
We have other instances beside the present, of words being changed in the folio, in consequence of their not being understoord. Thus, in Hamlet, for orisons, in Act IV. the reading of the quarto, we have in the folio, prayers ; the former word not being understood. MALONE.
3 II may'st thou thrive, if thou grant any grace!) This line is not in the folio. Nalone.
I never long'd to hear a word till now;
moy *. Duch. Dost thou teach pardon pardon to de
Boling. Good aunt, stand up.
I do not sue to stand, Pardon is all the suit I have in hand.
BOLING. I pardon him, as God shall pardon me.
Duca. O happy vantage of a kneeling knee!
With all my heart
4 - pardonnez moy.] That is, excuse me, a phrase used when any thing is civilly denied. The whole passage is such as I could well wish away, Johnson
5 The Chopping French -] Chopping, I suppose, here means jabbering, talking Rippantly a language unintelligible to Englishmen; or perhaps it may mean-the French, who clip and mutilate their words. I do not remember to have met the word, in this sense, in any other place. In the universities they talk of chopping logick; and our author in Romeo and Juliet has the same phrase :
" How now! how now ! chop logick?” MALONE...,
Duch. A god on earth thou art?.
and the abbot”,
Enter Exton, and a Servant. Exton. Didst thou not mark the king, what
words he spake ?
o With all my heart
I pardon him.] The old copies read—“I pardon him with all my heart." The transposition was made by Mr. Pope.
MALONE. 9 A god on earth thou art.] So, in Cymbeline: “He sits 'mongst men, like a descended god."
Steevens. 8 But for our trusty brother-in-law.] The brother-in-law meant, was John Duke of Exeter and Earl of Huntingdon (own brother to King Richard II.) and who had married with the lady Elizabeth, sister of Henry Bolingbroke. TheoBALD. 9- the abbot,] i. e. the Abbot of Westminster.
THEOBALD. Destruction straight shall dog them at the heels.] Again, in King Richard III. : " Death and destruction dog thee at the heels."
STEEVENS. ? cousin too, adieu :] Too, which is not in the old copy, was added by Mr. Theobald, for the sake of the metre. MALONE.