Page images
PDF
EPUB

In these affairs to aid me, with thy counsel.

Pro. Go on before; I shall enquire you forth;
I must unto the road, 8 to disembark
Some necessaries that I needs must use;
And then I 'll presently attend you.

Val. Will you make haste?
Pro. I will.

[Exit VAL.
Even as one heat another heat expels,
Or as one nail by strength drives out another,
So the remembrance of my former love
Is by a newer object quite forgotten.'
Is it mine eye, or Valentinus' praise,'
Her true perfection, or my false transgression,

8

the road,] The haven, where ships ride at anchor.

Malone 9 Even as one heat another heat expels,

Or as one nail by strength drives out another,
So the remembrance of my former love

Is by a newer object quite forgotten.] Our author seems here to have remembered The Tragicall History of Romeus and Juliet, 1562:

“ And as out of a planke a nayle a nayle doth drive,

So novel love out of the minde the auncient love doth rive.So also, in Coriolanus :

“ One fire drives out one fire; one nail one nail.Malone. 1 Is it mine eye, or Valentinus' praise,] The old copy reads

“ Is it mine or Valentine's praise?" Steevens. Here Proteus questions with himself, whether it is his own praise or Valentine's, that makes him fall in love with Valentine's mistress. But not to insist on the absurdity of falling in love through his own praises, he had not, indeed, praised her any farther, than giving his opinion of her in three words, when his friend asked it of him.

A word is wanting in the first folio. The line was originally thus :

It is mine eye, or Valentino's praise? Proteus had just seen Valentine's mistress, whom her lover had been lavishly praising. His encomiums, therefore, heightening Proteus's ideas of her at the interview, it was the less wonder he should be uncertain, which had made the strongest impression, Valentine's praises, or his own view of her. Warburton. The first folio reads:

“ It is mine, or Valentine's praise." The second :

“ Is it mine then or Valentinean's praise ?” Ritson. I read, as authorized, in a former instance, by the old copy, — Valentinus. See Act I. sc. iii. p. 159. Steevens.

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;
Which, like a waxen image 'gainst a fire, 2
Bears no impression of the thing it was.
Methinks, my zeal to Valentine is cold;
And that I love him not, as I was wont:
O! but I love his lady, too, too much;
And that 's the reason I love him so little.
How shall I dote on her with more advice, 3
That thus, without advice, begin to love her?
'Tis but her picture4 I have yet beheld,

2

3

a waxen image 'gainst a fire,] Alluding to the figures, made by witches, as representatives of those, whom they designed to torment or destroy. See my note on Macbeth, Act I. sc. iii.

Steevens. King James ascribes these images to the devil, in his treatise of Daemonologie: “to some others, at these times, he teacheth how to make pictures of waxe or claye, that, by the roasting thereof, the persons that they bear the name of may be continually melted, and dried away, by continual sicknesse.” See Servius, on the 8th Eclogue of Virgil, Theocritus Idyl. 2. 22. Hudibras, p. 2. 1. 2. v. 331. S. W.

with more advice,] With more advice, is, on further knowledge, on better consideration. So, in Titus Andronicus :

“ The Greeks, upon advice, did bury Ajax." The word, as Mr. Malone observes, is still current, among mercantile people, whose constant language is, “we are advised by letters from abroad,” meaning informed. So, in bills of exchange, the conclusion always is— Without further advice.So, in this very play:

“ This pride of hers, upon advice," &c. Again, in Measure for Measure:

Yet did repent me, after more advice.” Steevens. 4 'Tis but her picture - ] This is evidently a slip of attention; for he had seen her in the last scene, and in high terms, offered her his service. Johnson.

I believe Proteus means, that, as yet, he had seen only her outward form, without having known her long enough to have any acquaintance with her mind. So, in Cymbeline :

“ All of her, that is out of door, most rich!

“ If she be furnish'd with a mind so rare," &c. Again, in The Winter's Tale, Act II. sc. i:

“ Praise her but for this her without-door form." Perhaps, Proteus is mentally comparing his fate with that of Pyrocles, the hero of Sidney's Arcadia, who fell-in love with

5

And that hath dazzled my reason's light;
But when ] look on her perfections,
There is no reason but I shall be blind.
If ] can check my erring love, [ will;
If not, to compass her I'll use my skill.

[Exit.

[blocks in formation]

Enter SPEED and LAUNCE. Speed. Launce! by mine honesty, welcome to Milan.s

Laun. Forswear 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?

Laun. Marry, after they closed in earnest, they parted very fairly in jest.

Speed. But shall she marry him?
Laun. No.
Speed. How then? Shall he marry her?
Laun. No, neither.
Speed. What, are they broken?
Laun. No, they are both as whole as a fish.
Speed. Why, then, how stands the matter with them?

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

Speed. What an ass art thou? I understand thee not.

Philoclea, immediately on seeing her portrait, in the house of Kalander. Steevens. 5 And that hath dazzled my reason's light;

But when I look, &c.] Our author uses dazzled as a trisyllable. The editor of the second folio, not perceiving this, introduced so, (" And that hath dazzled so," &c.) a word as hurtful to the sense, as unnecessary to the metre. The plain meaning is, Her mere outside has dazzled me :—when I am acquainted with the perfections of her mind, I shall be struck blind. Malone.

to Milan.] It is Padua in the former editions. See the note on Act III, Pope.

6

Laun. What a block art thou, that thou canst not? My staff understands me.?

Speed. What thou say’st?

Laun. Ay, and what I do too: look thee, I 'll 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, will ’t be a match?

Laun. 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. The conclusion is, then, that it will.

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

Sheed. 'Tis well that I get it so. But, Launce, how say'st thou, that my master is become a notable lover? 8

Laun. I never knew him otherwise.
Speed. Than how?
Laun. A notable lubber, as thou reportest him to be.
Speed. Why, thou whorson ass, thou mistakest me.

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

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

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

7 My staff understands me.] This equivocation, miserable as it is, has been admitted by Milton in his great poem, B. VI:

- The terms we sent were terms of weight,
“ Such as, we may perceive, amaz'd them all,
“ And stagger'd many; who receives them right,
“ Had need from head to foot well understand,
“ Not understood, this gift they have besides,
“ To shew us when our foes stand not upright.”

Fohnson. The same quibble occurs likewise in the second part of The Three Merry Coblers, an ancient ballad:

“ Our work doth th' owners understand,
“ Thus still we are on the mending hand. Steevens.

how say'st thou, that my master is become a notable lover ?] i. e. (as Mr. M. Mason has elsewhere observed) What say'st thou to this circumstance,-namely, that my master is become a notable lover? Malone.

so;] So, which is wanting in the first folio, was supplied by the editor of the second. Malone.

8

9

Speed. Why?

Laun. Because thou hast not so much charity in thee, as to go to the ale! with a Christian: Wilt thou go? Speed. At thy service.

[Exeunt.

SCENE VI.2
The same,

An Apartment in the Palace.

Enter PROTEUS.
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 first my oath,
Provokes me to his threefold perjury.
Love bade me swear, and love bids me forswear:
Û sweet-suggesting love!3 if thou hast sinn'd,
Teach me, thy tempted subject, to excuse it.
At first, I did adore a twinkling star,

1

the ale -] Ales were merry meetings instituted in country places. Thus, Ben Jonson:

“ And all the neighbourhood, from old records
Of antique proverbs drawn from Whitson lords,
« And their authorities at wakes and ales,
“ With country precedents, and old wives' tales,

“ We bring you now.”. Again, in Ascham's Toxophilus, edit. 1589, p. 2: “or else make merry with their neighbours at the ale."

Again, as Mr. M. Mason observes, in the play of Lord Croma well:

“ O Tom, that we were now at Putney, at the ale there!" See also Mr. T. Warton's History of English Poetry, Vol. III. p. 128. Steevens.

2 It is to be observed, that, in the folio edition there are no directions concerning the scenes; they have been added by the later editors, and may therefore be changed by any reader that can give more consistency or regularity to the drama by such al. terations. I make this remark, in this place, because I know not whether the following soliloquy of Proteus is so proper in the street. Johnson.

The reader will perceive that the scenery has been changed, though Dr. Johnson's observation is continued. Steevens.

3 sweet-suggesting love!?] To suggest is to tempt, in our au. thor's language. So again :

« Knowing that tender youth is soon suggested.The sense is, o tempting love, if thou hast influenced me to sin, teach me to excuse it. Johnson,

« PreviousContinue »