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(Thus leaning on mine elbow, I begin)
I fhall befeech you -that is question now ;
It draws towards fupper in conclusion, so.
And fits the mounting spirit like myself :
That doth not fmack of observation.
A Defcription of England.
(2) That pale that white-fac'd fhore, Whofe foot spurns back the ocean's roaring tides,
true) ftrikes me on reading the paffage. "Richard fays, the traveller and his tooth-pick fhall be both at his table, and for my own part, he goes on, when 1 have fuffic'd my knightly ftomach, then I fhall fit at my eafe picking my teeth, and catechifing my picked man of countries, i. e. my traveller who has already picked his teeth, and does not take the liberty which I do, to loll on his elbow, and pick his teeth, being fubfervient to my commands, and waiting for my catechifing him." In this fenfe picked is right in the old copies.
(2) That, &c.] Shakespear, like a true lover of his country, has never omitted any opportunity to celebrate it or his countrymen, the reader will find befides the paffages in the prefent play, one in Richard II. A. 2. S. 1. and Cymbeline, A. 3. S1. Spenfer too forgot not to pay due honours to his country in his Fairie Queene, but has given us one whole Canto, which he entitles,
And coops from other lands her islanders;
Ev'n till that England, hedg'd in with the main,
Defcription of an English Army.
His marches are expedient to this town,
With her, her neice, the lady Blanch of Spain;
A chronicle of Briton kings
Till time of Gloriane.
B. 2. C. 10:
Neither has Milton omitted to mention his country; in his admirable mask of Comus, he calls it
The greatest and the best of all the main ; And his countrymen, An old and haughty nation proud in arms.
(3) With them, &c.] There is a flight error in the pointing here, which I the rather take notice of, as it runs thro' all the editions, and feems to have given the editors a wrong fenfe of the paffage; 'tis faid, the king is come with the mother qucen,
With her, her niece the lady Blanch of Spain,
I think there is no doubt, the femicolon fhould be after the baftard of the king deceas'd; then he adds, and all the unfettled humours of the land, rafh, &c. have fold, &c." Scathe in the laft line but two, fignifies damage, hurt, mifchief, derived from a Saxon word: Skinner fays, it is yet ufed in Lincolnshire, which it might have been in his time, and probably may be now, tho' I don't recollect ever to have heard it.
With lady's faces, and fierce dragon's fpleens,
By how much unexpected, by fo much We must awake endeavour for defence; For courage mounteth with occafion.
SCENE II. A Boafter.
What cracker is this fame, that deafs our ears With this abundance of fuperfluous breath?
SCENE IV. Defcription of Victory, by the French.
You men of Angiers, open wide your gates, And let young Arthur duke of Bretagne in: Who by the hand of France this day hath made, Much work for tears in many an English mother, Whofe fons lye fcatter'd on the bleeding ground: And many a widow's husband groveling lies, Coldly embracing the difcolour'd earth; While victory with little lofs doth play Upon the dancing banners of the French ; Who are at hand, triumphantly display'd, To enter conquerors.
By the English.
Rejoice, you men of Angiers, ring your bells,
Their armours that march'd hence, fo filver-bright,
SCENE V. A compleat Lady.
If lufty love fhould go in queft of beauty,
SCENE VI. On Commodity, or Self-Intereft.
With that fame purpofe-changer, that fly devil,
Of kings, of beggars, old men, young men, maids,
But the word maid, cheats the poor maid of that;
The world, which of itself is poised well,
This fway of motion, this commodity,
* What doft thou mean by fhaking of thy head? Why doft thou look fo fadly on my fon?
What means that hand upon that breast of thine ?
A Mother's Fondness for a beautiful Child. (4) If thou, that bid'ft me be content, wert grim Ugly, and fland'rous to thy mother's womb,
* What. &c.] So Seneca in his Oedipus lays,
Effari dubitas ? cur genas mutat color ?
And in his Agamemnon,
Quid tacita verfas,
Licet ipfa fleas, totus in vultu dolor eft.
What fecret forrows roll within thy breast,
Thus filent?-All thy looks befpeak affliction.
(4) If thon, &c.] So in the Unnatural combat of Massinger, the
father, who was ftruggling with the violent and fhocking paffion He had conceiv'd for his daughter, obferves,