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6 FOR BLUNTING the fine point of seldom pleasure,] That is, for fear of blunting, &c.
Voluptates commendat rarior usus. Hor. Malone. - aciesque habetatur amori
Mutato toties. Alicubi. Steevens.
Since seldom COMING, in the long year set,
“ If all the year were playing holidays,
“ And nothing pleaseth but rare accidents.” Again, ibidem :
“ my state,
“ And won by rareness much solemnity.” Malone. “ – feasts so solemn and so rare." He means the four festivals of the year. STEEVENS.
8 Or Captain jewels in the CARCANET.] Jewels of superior worth. So, in Timon of Athens :
“ The ass more captain than the lion, and the fellow
“ Loaden with irons, wiser than the judge.” Again, in the 66th Sonnet :
“And captive Good attending captain Ill." The carcanet was an ornament worn round the neck. Malone. 9 Or as the wardrobe, which the robe doth hide,
To make some special instant special-blest,] So, in King Henry IV. Part I. :
Blessed are you, whose worthiness gives scope, Being had, to triumph, being lack'd, to hope.
In all external grace you have some part,
LIV. O, how much more doth beauty beauteous seem, By that sweet ornament which truth doth give!
“ Then did I keep my person fresh and new;
“ Ne'er seen but wonder'd at." Steevens.
- and the counterfeit -] A counterfeit, it has been already observed, formerly signified a portrait. Malone.
2 Speak of the spring, and poizon of the year;] Foizon is plenty. The word is yet in common use in the North of England.
MALONE. 3 The other As YOUR BOUNTY,-) The foizon, or plentiful season, that is, the autumn, is the emblem of your bounty. So, in The Tempest:
“ How does my bounteous sister (Ceres] ?" Again, in Antony and Cleopatra:
“ For his bounty,
The rose looks fair, but fairer we it deem
And so of you, beauteous and lovely youth, When that shall fade, my verse distills your
4 The CANKER-BLOOMS have full as deep a dye,
As the perfumed tincture of the roses;] The canker is the canker-rose or dog-rose. The rose and the canker are opposed in like manner in Much Ado About Nothing: “I had rather be a canker in a hedge than a rose in his grace." MALONE.
Shakspeare had not yet begun to observe the productions of nature with accuracy, or his eyes would have convinced him that the cynorhodon is by no means of as deep a colour as the rose. But what has truth or nature to do with Sonnets ? Steevens.
s When summer's breath their MASKED BUDS Discloses :) So, in Hamlet :
“ The chariest maid is prodigal enough,
“ Too oft before their buttons be disclosed." Malone. 6 But, for their virtue -] For has here the signification of because. So, in Othello:
“ — haply for I am black.” Malone. 7- Sweet Roses do not so;
Of their sweet deaths are sweetest odours made:] The same image occurs in a Midsummer-Night's Dream :
“ earthlier happy is the rose distillid,
MALONE. 8 - MY verse distills your truth.] The old copy reads, I think, corruptedly :-by verse distills your truth. MALONE.
So, till the judgment that yourself arise,
Exegi monumentum ære perennius,
Regalique silu pyramidum altius. Hor. This Sonnet furnishes a very strong confirmation of my interpretation of the words,“ – a paper epitaph,” in King Henry V. See vol. xvii. p. 283, n. 2. Malone.
Than unswept Stone, besmear'd with sluttish time.] So, in All's Well That Ends Well :
“ Where dust, and damn'd oblivion, is the tomb ..
“ Of honour'd bones indeed.” Malone.
Jamque opus exegi, quod nec Jovis ira nec ignes,
Ovid. . MALONE.
Let this sad interim like the ocean be
Or call it winter, which being full of care, Makes summer's welcome thrice more wish'd, more rare.
So true a fool is love, that in your will
The tedious bour's
3 Or call it winter,] The old copy reads—As call it, &c. The emendation, which requires neither comment nor support, was suggested to me by the late Mr. Tyrwhitt. Malone.'
4- the WORLD-WITHOUT-END hour,] The tedious hour, that seems as if it would never end. So, in Love's Labour's Lost :
“ — a time, methinks, too short
“ To make a world-without-end bargain in." i. e. an everlasting bargain. MALONE.