Only for wantonness. By my christendom,
So I were out of prison, and kept sheep,
I should be as merry as the day is long;
And so I would be here, but that I doubt
My uncle practises more harm to me:
He is afraid of me, and I of him :
Is it my fault that I was Geffrey's son?
No, indeed, is't not; And I would to heaven,
I were your son, so you would love me, Hubert.

Hub. If I talk to him, with his innocent prate
He will awake my mercy, which lies dead :
Therefore I will be sudden, and dispatch. [Aside.

Arth. Are you sick, Hubert? you look pale to-day : In sooth, I would you were a little fick; That I might fit all night, and watch with you : I warrant, I love you more than you do me.

Hub. His words do take poffeffion of my bosom. Read here, young Arthur [Shewing a paper. How now, foolish rheum!

[ Afide. Turning dispiteous torture out of door ? I must be brief; left resolution drop Out at mine eyes, in tender womanish tears.-Can you not read it? is it not fair writ?

Arth. Too fairly, Hubert, for so foul effect : Must you with hot irons burn out both mine eyes?

Hub. Young boy, I must.


doltih : melancholy is the crest of courtiers, and now every base companion, &c. says he is melancholy.Again, in the Life and Death of the Lord Cromwell, 1613 :

My nobility is wonderful melancholy.
« Is it not mot gentleman like to be melancholy ?

STEEVENS, Lilly, in his Mydas, ridicules the affectation of melancholy: “ Now every base companion, being in his muble fubles, fays, he is melancholy. - Thou fhould'It say thou art lumpish. If thou encroach on our courtly terms, weele trounce thee.” FARMER.

Turning dispiteous torture out of door ?] For torture fir T. Hanmer reads nature, and is followed, I think, without necellity, by Dr. Warburton. "JOHNSON.


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Arth. And will you?
Hub. And I will.
Arth. Have you the heart ? When your head did

but ake,
I knit my handkerchief about your brows,
(The best I had, a princess wrought it me)
And I did never ask it you again :
And with my hand at midnight held your head;
And, like the watchful minutes to the hour,
Still and anon chear'd up the heavy time;
Saying, What lack you ? and, Where lies your grief?
Or, What good love may I perforın for you?
Many a poor man's son would have lain still,
And ne'er have spoke a loving word to you;
But you at your fick service had a prince.
Nay, you may think, my love was crafty love,
And call it, cunning : Do, an if you will:
If heaven be pleas’d that you must use me ill,
Why, then you must.-Will you put out mine eyes?
These eyes, that never did, nor never shall,
So much as frown on you?

Hub. I have sworn to do it;
And with hot irons must I burn them out.

Arth. Ah, none, but in this iron age, would do it!
The iron of itself, though heat red-hot,
Approaching near these eyes, would drink my tears,
And quench this fiery indignation,
Even in the matter of mine innocence :
Nay, after that, consume away in rust,
But for containing fire to harm mine eye.
Are you more stubborn-hard than hammer'd iron ?
An if an angel should have come to me,
And told ine, Hubert should put out mine eyes,
3 I would not have believ'd him; no tongue, but Hu-'
bert's. . [Hubert stamps, and the men enter.


3 I would not have believed a tongue but Hubert's.] Thus Mre Pope found the line in the old editions. According to this reading

Hub. Come forth; do as I bid you do.
Arth. O, save me, Hubert, save me! my eyes are

Even with the fierce looks of these bloody men.

Hub. Give me the iron, I say, and bind him here.

Arth. Alas, what need you be so boistrous-rough? I will not struggle, I will stand stone-still. For heaven's fake, Hubert, let me not be bound ! Nay, hear me, Hubert! drive these men away, And I will fit as quiet as a lamb; I will not stir, nor wince, nor speak a word, Nor look upon the iron angerly : Thrust but these men away, and I'll forgive you, Whatever torment you do put me to.

Hub. Go, stand within ; let me alone with him.

it is supposed that Hubert had told him, he would not put out his eyes; for the angel who says be would, is brought in as contradicting Hubert. Mr. Theobald, by what authority I don't know, reads :

I would not have believ'd him: no tongue, but Hubert's. which is spoiling the measure, without much mending the sense. Shakespeare, I am persuaded, wrote:

I would not have believ'd a tongue bate Hubert ; i.e. abate, disparage. The blunder seems to have arisen thus : bate fignifies except, faving; fo the transcribers, taking it in this sense, substituted the more usual word but in its place. My alteration greatly improves the sense, as implying a tenderness of affection for Hubert; the common reading, only an opinion of Hubert's veracity; whereas the point here was to win upon Hubert's passions, which could not be better done than by shewing affection towards him. WARBURTON.

I do not see why the old reading may not stand. Mr. Theobald's alteration, as we find, injures the measure, and Dr. Warburton's corrupts the language, and neither can be said much to mend the sense. Johnson.

Mr. Theobald's reading is the reading of the old copy. I have therefore restored it.

-rixatur de lana fæpe caprina. Shakespeare very probably meant the last line to have been broken off imperfectly; thus :

I would not have believ'd him; no tongue, but Hubert's. The old reading is, however, sense. STEEVENS.



Exec. I am best pleas'd to be from such a deed,

Arth. Alas, I then have chid away my friend ;
He hath a stern look, but a gentle heart :-
Let him come back, that his compassion may
Give life to yours.

Hub. Come, boy, prepare yourself.
Arth. Is there no reinedy?
Hub. None, but to lose your eyes.
Arth. O heaven!that there were but a moth in

A grain, a dust, a gnat, a wandring hair,
Any annoyance in that precious sense!
Then, feeling what small things are boistrous there,
Your vile intent must needs seem horrible.
Hub, Is this your promise ? go to, hold your

Arth. Hubert, the utterance of a brace of tongues
Must needs want pleading for a pair of eyes :
Let me not hold my tongue; let me not, Hubert !
4 Or, Hubert, if you will, cut out my tongue,
So I may keep mine eyes; 0, spare mine eyes;
Though to no use, but still to look on you!
Lo, by my troth, the instrument is cold,
And would not harm me.

Hub. I can heat it, boy,
Arth. 5 No, in good footh ; the fire is dead with

Being create for comfort, to be us’d
In undeserv'd extremes : See else yourself;

4 Or, Hubert, if you will, cut out my tongue,] This is according to nature, We imagine no evil so great as that which

is near us.

Johnson. 5 No, in good footh; &c.] The sense is : the fire, being created pot to hurt, but to comfort, is dead with grief for finding itself used in acts of cruelty, which, being innocent, I have not deserved,



There is no malice in this burning coal;
The breath of heaven hath blown his spirit out,
And strew'd repentant ashes on his head.

Hub. But with my breath I can revive it, boy.

Arth. And if you do, you will but make it blush, And glow with shame of your proceedings, Hubert : Nay, it, perchancc, will fparkle in your eyes; And, like a dog, that is compell’d to fight, Snatch at his master that doth tarre him on. All things, that you ihould use to do me wrong, Deny their office: only you do lack That mercy, which fierce fire, and iron, extends, Creatures of note for inercy-lacking uses.

Hub. Well, see to live; I will not touch thine eye For all the treasure that thine uncle owes : Yet am I sworn, and I did purpose, boy, With this same very iron to burn them out.

Arth. O, now you look like Hubert! all this while
You were disguised.
Hub. Peace : no more.

Adieu ;
Your uncle must not know but you are dead :
I'll fill these dogged spies with false reports.
And, pretty child, sleep doubtless, and secure,
That Hubert, for the wealth of all the world,
Will not offend thee.

Arth. O heaven !-I thank you, Hubert.

Hub. Silence; no more : Go closely in with me; Much danger do I undergo for thee. [Exeunt.

6 There is no malice in this burning coal;] Dr. Gray says, " that no malice in a burning coal is certainly absurd, and that we should sead:

6. There is no malice burning in this coal." STEEVENS,

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