Puslapio vaizdai

Degrees, Obfervances, cuftoms and laws,
Decline to your confounding contraries!
And yet confufion live!-Plagues, incident to men,
Your potent and infectious fevers heap

On Athens, ripe for stroke! Thou cold Sciatica,
Cripple our fenators, that their limbs may halt
As lamely as their manners Luft and liberty
Creep in the minds and marrows of our youth,
That 'gainst the ftream of virtue they may ftrive,
And drown themfelves in riot! Itches, blains,
Sow all th' Athenian bofoms, and their crop
Ee general leprofy: breath infect breath,
That their fociety (as their friendship) may
Be meerly poifon. Nothing I'll bear from thee,
Eut nakedness, thon deteftable town!

SCENE H. A Friend forfaken.

As we do turn our backs

From our companion, thrown into his grave,
So his familiars from his buried fortunes
Slink all away; leave their falfe vows with him,
Like empty purfes pick'd and his poor fe'f,
(4) A dedicated beggar to the air,

With his disease of all-fhun'd poverty,

Walks, like contempt, alone.

(4) A dedicated, &c.] In Romeo and Juliet, at the beginning, he speaks prettily of a bud bit by an envious worm,

Ere he can fpread his fweet wings to the air,

Or dedicate his beauty to the fun,

In the next line, the author feems to have had his eye on that trite and well-known line of Ovid's;

Nullus ad amiffas ibit amicus opes.



(5) What is here?

Gold yellow, glittering, precious gold? (6) No, gods, I am no idle votarift.

Roots, you clear heavens! thus much of this will make Black, white; foul, fair; wrong, right;

Bafe, noble; old, young; coward, valiant..

You gods! why this? what this? you gods! why,


Will lug your priests and fervants from your fides:
Pluck ftout mens pillows from below their heads.
This yellow flave

Will knit and break religions; blefs th' accurs'd;


(5) What is, &c.] See page 21 of this volume, Ben Johnson,› in his Volpone, fpeaking of gold, fays,

Thou art virtue, fame,

Honour and all things elfe! who can get thee

He shall be noble, valiant, honeft, wife

Mofc. And what he will, fir.

A& r. Sc. 1.

Which lines are an exact tranflation of the following from Ha race;

Omnis enim res

Virtus, fama, decus, divina bumanaque pulabris,.
Divitiis parent: quas qui conftruxerit, ille

Clarus erit fortis, juftus, fapiens; etiam et res

Et quicquid volet.

L. 2. S. 3.

I leave the learned reader to judge, which of the two, this claffical bard, or our illiterate one, with his fmall Latin and Greek, have beft expreft the fpirit and meaning of Horace.

(6) No, &c.] This is well explained, Mr. Wa burton obferves, by the following lines of Perfius-Sat. 2. v. 10.

Er o fi

Subraftio crepet argenti feria dextro
Hercule !

Or, O thou thund'rer's fon, great Hercules,
That once thy bounteous deity would please,
To guide my rake upon the chinking found
Of fome vaft treasure hidden under ground.

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Make the hoar leprofy ador'd; place thieves,
And give them title, knee, and approbation,
With fenators on the bench: this is it,
That makes the (7) waped widow'wed again;
She, whom the spittle-house and ulcerous fores
Would.caft the gorge at, this embalms and spices
To th'April day again. Come, damned earth,
Thou common whore of mankind, that putt'ft odds
Among the rout of nations, I will make thee
Do thy right nature.


SCENE IV. Timon to Alcibiades.

Go on, here's gold, go on ;

Be as a planetary plague, when Jove
Will o'er fome high-vic'd city hang his poifon
In the fick air let not thy fword skip one,
Pity not honour'd age for his white beard,
He is an ufurer. Strike me the matron,
It is her habit only that is honest,

Herfelf's a bawd. Let not the virgin's cheek
Make foft thy trenchant fword; for thofe milk paps,
That through the window-lawn bore at mens eyes,
Are not within the leaf of pity writ;

Set them down horrible traitors. Spare not the babe,
Whofe dimpled fmiles from fools extort* their mercy;

(7) Waped, i. e. forrowful, mournful. Ben Johnson, in the 5th act of the fame play we mentioned but now, obferves,

That gold transforms

The most deformed, and reftores them lovely
As 'twere the strange poetical girdle.

The old fellow is here again at his books, as if, the flighteft remark were not to proceed from his own brain, but to be midwiv'd by him into the world from the claffics. Lucian, in his Gallus, fays, Ogas oowv, &c. You fee what mighty advantages gold produces, fince it transforms the most deformed, juft as it were that famous poetical girdle.

Extort-Oxford editor, vulg, exhauft.

Think it a baftard, whom the oracle

Hath doubtfully pronounc'd thy throat fhall cut,
And mince it fans remorfe. Swear against objects,
Put armour on thine ears, and on thine eyes;
Whofe proof, nor yells of mothers, maids, nor babes,
Nor fight of priest in holy vestments bleeding,
Shall pierce a jot. There's gold to pay thy foldiers.
Make large confufion; and thy fury spent,
Confounded be thyfelf! Speak not, be gone.

·To the Courtezans.

Confumptions fow

In hollow bones of man, ftrike their sharp fhins,
And mar mens fpurring. Crack the lawyer's voice,
That he may never more false title plead,

Nor found his quillets fhrilly. (8) Hoar the Flamen,


(8) Hoar, & Mr. Upton, plainly perceiving there was fome. thing wrong in this paffage, proposes to read,

Hoarfe the Flamen.

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See Crit.

i e. make hoarfe for to be boary claims reverence: this, not
only the poets but the fcripture teaches us : Levit. xix 32. Thou
fhalt rife up before the boary head.” Add to this, that boa fe, is
here most proper, as oppofed to feolds. The poet could never
mean- Give the Flamen the hoary leprofy that fcolds, boar, in
this fenfe is fo ambiguous, that the conftruction hardly admits it,
and the oppofition plainly requires the other reading.'
Obfervations, p. 198. Tho', I must confefs Mr. Upton's conjec-
t ure very ingenious, and acknowledge with him, boar, as it ftands, -
can never be Shakespear's word; yet neither can I think, boarfe,
to be fo: tho' perhaps it may feem unreafonable in me to con-
demn it, without being able to offer a better in its place. But I
am apt to imagine there is a word by fome means or other flipt:
out of the text, and wanted where I have plac'd the afterisk.

Nor found his quillets fhrilly, the hoar Flamen
That fcolds, &c.

What the word fo loft is, or how it must be fupplied, can be only conjecture, fo that every reader will have a pleafing opportunity of trying his critical fagacity: the epithet is very proper for th


That fcolds against the quality of flesh,

And not believes himself. Down with the nose,
Down with it flat; take the bridge quite away
Of him, that his particular (9) to foresee

Smells from the gen'ral weal. Make curl'd-pate ruffians bald,

And let the unfcarr'd braggarts of the war

Derive fome pain from you.

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SCENE V. Timon's Reflections on the Earth..

That nature being fick of man's unkindness,
Should yet be hungry! Common mother, thou
Whose womb unmeasurable, and infinite breast
Teems, and feeds all; oh, thou! whofe felf-fame

(Whereof thy proud child, arrogant man, is puft)
Engenders the black toad, and adder blue,
The gilded newt, and eyeless venom'd worm;
With all th' abhorred births below (10) crifp heav'n,

Flamen, and it feems to me, if we allow boarfe, there is none, or very little difference between what he and the lawyer were to fuffer it feems probable, feolds, in the next line, has been misplaced; and, indulging conjecture, we may at leaft be allowed to fuppofe the paffage originally stood thus ;

Nor found his quillets fhrewdly. Scald the boar Flamen,
That rails against the quality of the flesh

And not believes himself.

Thus, that part of the Flamen, which procures him reverence,, his hoary head would fuffer, and thus the punishments are varied. But this is only guefs-work, and yet in fuch cafes we have a better right to proceed in the daring work of alteration, than where an author's text is corrupt only to our feeble imaginations.

(9) To forefee] As men by forefeeing, provide for and take care of their affairs, Shakespear ufes the word in that fenfe," of him that to forefee, provide for and fee after] his own particular advantage, &c.'

(10) Crifp-crifpus, crifpatys, curled; alluding to the clouds, that appear curled, and to which he gives that epithet in the Tempeft.

To ride

On the curled clouds,

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