Sidebilder
PDF
ePub

And thou, a kingdom ;-all of you, allegiance :
This forrow that I have, by right is yours ;
And all the pleasures you usurp, are mine.

Glo. The curse my noble father laid on thee,-
When thou didst crown his warlike brows with paper,
And with thy scorns drew'st rivers from his eyes;
And then, to dry them, gav'st the duke a clout,
Steep'd in the faultless blood of pretty Rutland ;-
His curses, then from bitterness of soul
Denounc'd against thee, are all fallen upon thee;
And God, not we, hath plagu'd thy bloody deed.

Queen. So just is God, to right the innocent. Hajt. 0, 'twas the fouleft deed, to say that babe, And the most merciless, that e'er was heard of. Riv. Tyrants themselves wept when it was re

ported, Dorf. No man but prophesy'd revenge for it. Buck. Northumberland, then present, wept to see it. Q. Mar. What! were you snarling all, before I

came,
Ready to catch each other by the throat,
And turn you all your hatred now on me?
Did York's dread curse prevail so much with heaven,
That Henry's death, my lovely Edward's death,
Their kingdom's loss, my woeful banishment,
Could all but answer for that peevith brat?
Can curses pierce the clouds, and enter heaven ?-
Why, then give way, dull clouds, to my quick

curses !
Though not by war, ? by surfeit die your king,
As ours by murder, to make him a king !
Edward, thy son, that now is prince of Wales,
For Edward my son, that was prince of Wales,
Die in his youth, by like untimely violence !

Q. Mar. So just is God, &c.] This line should be given to Edward IVth's

queen,

WARBURTON. by surfeit die your king!] Alluding to his luxurious life.

Johnson.

Thy

6

7

Thyself a queen, for me that was a queen,
Out-live thy glory, like my wretched self !
Long may'st thou live, to wail thy children's loss;
And see another, as I see thee now,
Deck'd in thy rights, as thou art stalld in mine!
Long die thy happy days before thy death;
And, after many lengthen’d hours of grief,
Die neither mother, wife, nor England's queen!
Rivers,--and Dorset, you were standers by,
And so wast thou, lord Hastings,—when my son
Was stabb'd with bloody daggers; God, I pray him,
That none of you may live your natural age,
But by some unlook'd accident cut off !
Glo. Have done thy charm, thou hateful wither'd

hag.
Q. Mar. And leave out thee? stay, dog, for thou

shalt hear me.
If heaven have any grievous plague in store,
Exceeding those that I can with upon thee,
O, let them keep it, 'till thy sins be ripe,
And then hurl down their indignation
On thee, the troubler of the poor world's peace !
The worm of conscience still be-gnaw thy soul !
Thy friends suspect for traitors while thou liv'it,
And take deep traitors for thy dearest friends!
No sleep close up that deadly eye of thine,
Unless it be while some tormenting dream
Affrights thee with a hell of ugly devils !
Thou elvilh-inark'd abortive, 7 rooting hog!

Thou

[ocr errors]

--elvish-mark'd] The common people in Scotland (as I learn from Kelly's Proverbs) have still an aversion to those who have any natural defect or redundancy, as thinking them mark'd out for mischief. - STEEVENS.

rooting hog!] The expression is fine, alluding in memory of her young son) to the ravage which hogs make, with the finest flowers, in gardens; and intimating that Elizabeth was to expect no other treatment for her sons. WARBURTON, She calls him hog, as an appellation more contemptuous than

Thou that wast seal'd in thy nativity
· The slave of nature, and the son of hell!
'Thou slander of thy mother's heavy womb !
Thou loathed issue of thy father's loins !
Thou rag of honour ! thou detested-

Gló.

[ocr errors]

boar, as he is elsewhere termed from his ensigns armorial. There is no such heap of allufion as the commentator imagines.

JOHNSON. In the Mirror for Magistrates (a book already quoted) is the following Complaint of Collingbourne, who was cruelly executed for making a rime.

For where I meant the king by name of hog,
I only alluded to his badge the bore :
To Lovel's name I added more, -

-our dog ;
Because most dogs have borne that name of yore.
These metaphors I us'd with other more,

As cat and rat, the half-names of the rest,

To hide the sense that they fo wrongly wrefi. That Lovel was once the common name of a dog, may be likewise known from a passage in The Historie of Jacob and Efar, an interlude, 1568 :

6. Then come on at once, take my quiver and my bowe;

66 Fette lovell my hounde, and my horne to blowe.” The rhime for which Collingbourne suffered, was :

“ A cat, a rat, and Lovel the dog,

" Rule all England under a hog." STEEVENS. "The slave of nature, —] The expression is strong and noble, and alludes to the ancient custom of masters branding their profligate flaves : by which it is insinuated that his misshapen perfon was the mark that nature had set upon him to stigmatize his ill conditions. Shakespeare expresses the same thought in The Comedy of Errors:

" He is deformed, crooked, &c.

Stigmatical in making, But as the speaker rises in her resentment, the expresses this contemptuous thought much more openly, and condemns him to a still worse state of flavery :

Sin, death, and hell, have set their marks on him.” Only, in the first line, her mention of his moral condition infinuates her reflections on his deformity : and, in the last, her mention of his deformity infinuates her reflections on his moral condition : And thus he has taught her to fcold in all the elegance of figure. WARBURTON. > Thou rag of honour, &c.]. We should certainly read: Thou wrack of honour

Glo. Margaret.
Q: Mar. Richard !
Glo. Ha
2. Mar. I call thee not.

Glo. I cry thee mercy then ; for I did think,
That thou had'ít call'd me all these bitter names.

2. Mar. Why, so I did ; but look'd for no reply, O, let me make the period to my curse.

Glo. 'Tis done by me; and ends in-Margaret.
Queen. Thus have

you
breath'd

your curse against
yourself.
2. Mar. Poor painted queen, vain flourish of my

fortune 3!
Why strew'st thou sugar on that + bottled spider,
Whose deadly web ensnareth thee about?
Fool, fool! thou whet'st a knife to kill thyself.
The day will come, that thou shalt wish for me
To help thee curse this pois'nous bunch-back'd toad.

Haft. False-boding woman, end thy frantick curse;
Lest, to thy harm, thou move our patience.
2. Mar. Foul shame upon you ! you have all mov’d

mine.

[merged small][ocr errors]

i.e. the ruin and destruction of honour; which, I suppose, was firit writ rack, and then further corrupted to rag. WARBURTON.

Rag is, in my opinion, right, and intimates that much of his honour is torn away. Patch is, in the same manner, a contemp. tuous appellation. Johnson. This word of contempt is used again in Timon :

" If thou wilt curse, thy father, that poor rag,

Must be the subject. Again, in this play:

“ These over-weening rags of France." STEEVENS.

-flourish of my fortune ! ] This expression is likewise used by Maffinger in the Great Duke of Florence :

I allow these
“ As flourishings of fortune.STEEVENS.

-bottled spider,] A spider is called bottled, because, like other insects, he has a middle slender and a belly protuberant. Richard's form and venom, make her liken him to a spider.

JOHNSON. Vol. VII.

D.

Riv.

3

[ocr errors]

Riv. Were you well serv'd, you would be taught

your duty. Q. Mar. To serve me well, you all should do me

duty, Teach me to be your queen, and you my subjects : O, serve me well, and teach yourselves that duty.

Dorf. Dispute not with her, she is lunatic.

9. Mar. 5 Peace, master marquis, you are malapert; Your fire-new stamp of honour is scarce current : O, that your young nobility could judge, What 'twere to lose it, and be miserable ! They that stand high, have many blasts to shake

them ;

And, if they fall, they dash themselves to pieces. Glo. Good counsel, marry ;-Icarn it, learn it,

marquis. Dorf. It touches you, my lord, as much as me.

Glo. Ay, and much more : But I was born so high, Our aiery buildeth in the ccdar's top, And dallies with the wind, and scorns the sun.

Q. Mar. And turns the sun to shade ;-alas! alas! Witness my sun, now in the shade of death; Whofe bright out-shining beams thy cloudy wrath Hath in eternal darkness folded up.

5 Peace, master marquis; you are malapurt; &c.] Shakespeare may either allude to the late creation of the marquis of Dorset, or to the institution of the title of marquis here in England, as a special dignity, which was no older than Richard II. Robert Vere, earl of Oxford, was the first, who, as a distinct dignity, received the title of marquis, ist December, anno nono Richardi secundi. See Almole's History of the Order of the Garter, p. 456. GRAY.

Peace, master marquis, you are malapert;] As near a hundred years had elapsed between the time when the title of marquis was first instituted in England, and the creation of this Thomas Grey marquis of Dorset, I think Shakespeare can hardly allude to the institution of the dignity itself; much less could he call it a fire-new fiamp of honour searce current. Robert Vere, the first created marquis received this new title, A. D. 1386. Thomas Grey was created marquis of Dorset, A. D. 1476. Percy.

Your

« ForrigeFortsett »