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nounced. So far my king and master; so much my office 5.
K. Hen. What is thy name ? I know thy quality.
s — so much my office.] This speech, as well as another preceding it, was compressed into verse by Mr. Pope. Where he wanted a syllable, he supplied it, and where there were too many for his purpose, he made suitable omissions. Shakspeare (if we may believe the most perfect copy of the play, i. e. that in the first folio,) meant both speeches for prose, and as such I have printed them. Steevens.
o Without IMPEACHMENT :] i. e, hindrance. Empechement, French. In a book entitled, Miracles lately wrought by the Intercession of the glorious Virgin Marie, at Mont-aigu, nere unto Siche in Brabant, &c. printed at Antwerp, by Arnold Conings, 1606, I meet with this word : “ Wherefore he took it and without empeschment, or resistance, placed it againe in the oke.”
STEEVENS. Impeachment, in the same sense, has always been used as a legal word in deeds, as “ without impeachment of waste : " i.e. without restraint or hindrance of waste. Reed.
Without impeachment is, without being attacked. Impeachment. the legal word, is not from the French, but the Latin, impetere. See Blackstone, vol. ii. p. 283. MALONE.
My ransom, is this frail and worthless trunk ;
7- God before,] This was an expression in that age for God being my guide, or, when used to another, God be thy guide. So, in An old Dialogue between a Herdsman and a Maiden going on a Pilgrimage to Walsingham, the herdsman takes his leave in these words:
“Now, go thy ways, and God before."
Go, bid thy master well ADVise himself:-
DisCOLOUR:) From Holioshed : “ My desire is, that none of you be so unadvised, as to be the occasion that I in my defence shall colour and make red your tawny ground with the effusion of christian bloud. When he (Henry] had thus answered the herauld, he gave him a greate rewarde, and licensed him to depart."
MALONE. It appears from many ancient books that it was always cus. tomary to reward a herald, whether he brought defiance or congratulation. So, in the ancient metrical history of The Battle of Floddon :
“ Then gave he to the herald's hand,
“ Besides, with it, a rich reward; “ Who hasten'd to his native land
“ To see how with his king it far’d." STERVENS. .
K. Hen. We are in God's hand, brother, not in
The French Camp, near Agincourt.
Enter the Constable of France, the Lord RAMBURES, the Duke of Orleans, Dauphin, and Others.
Con. Tut! I have the best armour of the world.'Would it were day!
Orl. You have an excellent armour; but let my horse have his due. · Con. It is the best horse of Europe.
Orl. Will it never be morning ?
Dou. My lord of Orleans, and my lord high constable, you talk of horse and armour,
ORL. You are as well provided of both, as any prince in the world.
Dav. What a long night is this! I will not change my horse with any that treads but on four pasterns. Ca, ha! He bounds from the earth, as if his entrails were hairs?; le cheval volant, the Pegasus, qui a les narines de feu! When I bestride
9 - Scene VII.] This scene is shorter, and I think better, in the first editions of 1600 and 1608. But as the enlargements appear to be the author's own, I would not omit them. Pope.
"He hounds from the earth, as if his entrails were hairs : 1 Alluding to the bounding of tennis-balls, which were stuffed with hair, as appears from Much Ado About Nothing : “ And the old ornament of his cheek hath already stuffd tennis-balls."
he colour of the ginere; and thy
earth sings when he touches it; the basest horn of his hoof is more musical than the pipe of Hermes.
Orl. He's of the colour of the nutmeg.
Dav. And of the heat of the ginger. It is a beast for Perseus : he is pure air and fire; and the dull elements of earth and water never appear in him, but only in patient stillness, while his rider mounts him : he is, indeed, a horse; and all other jades you may call — beasts'.
2 – he is pure air and fire; and the dull elements of earth and water never appear in him,] Thus Cleopatra, speaking of herself :
“I am air and fire; my other elements
“ I give to baser life." STEEVENS. So, in our author's 44th Sonnet :
“- so much of earth and water wrought,
“I must attend time's leisure with my moan." Again, in Twelfth Night: “Do not our lives consist of the four elements?" MALONE.
3 — and all other vides you may call-BEASTS.] It is plain that jades and beasts should change places, it being the first word, and not the last, which is the term of reproach; as afterwards it is said:
“ I had as lief have my mistress a jade." WARBURTON. There is no occasion for this change. In The Second Part of King Henry IV. Sc. I. :
“ - he gave his able horse the head,
“ Against the panting sides of the poor jade.”
are not dul, “Of barley white, of rie and oates, they feede in mangier full."
Jade is sometimes used for a post horse. Beast is always employed as a contemptuous distinction. So, in Macbeth:
“- what beast was't then
“ That made you break this enterprize to me?" Again, in Timon of Athens : “ – what a wicked beast was I to disfurnish myself against so good a time!” Steevens.
I agree with Warburton in supposing that the words-beasts and jades have changed places. Steevens says, that beast is always employed as a contemptuous distinction, and, to support this assertion, he quotes a passage from Macbeth, and another from Timon, in which it appears that men were called beasts,
In tl the ed ctived
Con. Indeed, my lord, it is a most absolute and excellent horse.
Dau. It is the prince of palfreys; his neigh is like the bidding of a monarch, and his countenance enforces homage.
Orl. No more, cousin.
Dav. Nay, the man hath no wit, that cannot, from the rising of the lark to the lodging of the lamb, vary deserved praise on my palfrey : it is a theme as fluent as the sea; turn the sands into
where abuse was intended. But though the word beast be a contemptuous distinction, as he terms it, when applied to a man, it does not follow that it should be so when applied to a horse.
He forgets the following speech in Hamlet, which militates strongly against his assertion :
“ — he grew unto his seat,
“ With the brave beast."
I cannot forbear subjoining two queries to this note.
In the passage quoted by Mr. M. Mason from Hamlet, is not the epithet brave added, to exempt the word beast from being received in a slight sense of degradation ?
Is not, in the instance quoted by me from Henry IV. the epithet poor supplied, to render jade an object of compassion ?
Jade is a term of no very decided meaning. It sometimes signifies a hackney, sometimes a vicious horse, and sometimes a tired one; and yet I cannot help thinking, in the present instance, that as a horse is degraded by being called a jade, so a jade is vilified by being termed a beast. STEEVENS.
I do not think there is any ground for the transposition proposed by Dr. Warburton, who would make jades and beasts change places. Words under the hand of either a transcriber or compositor, never thus leap out of their places. The Dauphin evidently means, that no other horse has so good a title as his, to the appellation peculiarly appropriated to that fine and useful animal. The general term for quadrupeds may suffice for all other horses. Malone.