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Out of the bowels of the harmless earth,
I'll read your matter, deep and dangerous
(4) By heav'ns! methinks, it were an easy leap, To pluck bright honour from the pale-fac'd moon: Or dive into the bottom of the deep,
Where fathom-line could never touch the ground,
But out upon this half-fac'd fellowship!
(4) By heav'ns! &c.] I will not take upon me to defend this paffage from the charge laid against it of bombaft and fuftian, but will only obferve, if we read it in that light it is perhaps one of the finest rants to be found in any author. Mr. Warburton attempts to clear it from the charge, and obferves, "tho the expreffion be fublime and daring, yet the thought is the natural movement of an heroic mind. Euripides, at least, (as he adds) thought fo, when he put the very fame fentiment, in the fame words, into the mouth of Eteocles."
Eya yap, &c.-
I will not cloak my foul: methinks with ease
A kingdom, at the price, and god-like rule.
ACT II. SCENE VI.
Lady Piercy's pathetick Speech to her Husband.
(5) O my good lord, why are you thus alone?
Tell me, sweet lord, what is't that takes from thee
And in thy face ftrange motions have appear'd,
Some heavy business hath my lord in hand,
And I must know it, elfe he loves me not.
(s) See Portia's fpeech to Brutus in Julius Cæfar, A& II.
ACT III. SCENE I.
(6) I blame him not: at my nativity,
Hot. So it would have done
At the fame feason, if your mother's cat
Had kitten'd, though yourfelf had ne'er been born.
Difeafed nature oftentimes breaks forth
In ftrange eruptions; and the teeming earth
Within her womb; which, for enlargement ftriving,
On miferable Rhymers.
(7) I had rather be a kitten, and cry, mew! Than one of thefe fame meeter-ballad-mongers:
(6) I blame, &c.] Glendower was mightily fuperftitious, he adds afterwards
Give me leave
To tell you once again, that at my birth
The front of heav'n was full of fiery fhapes,
The goats ran from the mountains, and the herds
Thefe figns have marked me extraordinary,
I am not in the roll of common men.
(7) I had, &c.] Horace in his art of poetry, fpeaking of poetafters, fays;
I'd rather hear a brazen candlestick turn'd,
And that would nothing fet my teeth on edge,
Punctuality in Bargain.
I'll give thrice fo much land
To any well-deferving friend;
But in the way of bargain, mark ye me,
A Hufband fung to fleep by a fair Wife.
She bids you
All on the wanton rushes lay you down,
Ut mala, &c.
A mad dog's foam, th' infection of the plague,
'Tis hard to fay, whether for facrilege,
And like a bated bear, when he breaks loofe,
Learn'd, or unlearn'd, none fcape within their reach;
And never leave 'till they have read men dead.
(8) She bids, &c.] There is fomething extremely tender and pleafing in thefe lines, as well as in the following, from Philafter, which justly deserve to be compared with them:
And she will fing the fong that pleaseth you,
Who fhall now tell you
How much I lov'd you? who fhall fwear it to you,
And make them mourn? who shall take up his lute
Upon my eye-lid, making me dream and cry,
A. 3. latter end.
(9) As is, &c.] It is remarkable of Milton, that whenever he can have an opportunity, he takes particular notice of the evening twilight, but I don't at prefent recollect any paffage where he defcribes this morning-twilight, which Shakespear so beautifully hints at nothing can exceed this lovely description in the 4th book of his Paradife Loft.
Now came ftill evening on, and twilight gray
Apparent queen unveil'd her peerless light,
The reader will be agreeably entertain'd, if he refers to the paf
fage in Dr. Newton's Edition of Milton.