Puslapio vaizdai

Full of unpleafing blots, and fightless stains,
Lame, foolish, crooked, fwart, prodigious,
Patch'd with foul moles, and eye-offending marks;
I would not care, I then would be content :
For then I should not love thee: no, nor thou
Become thy great birth, nor deferve a crown.
But thy art fair, and at thy birth, dear boy!
(5) Nature and fortune join'd to make thee great.
Of nature's gifts thou may'ft with lillies boast,
And with the half blown-rofe.


I will inftruct


forrows to be proud;

For grief is proud, and makes the owner ftout.

If thou had'ft been born

Deform'd and crooked in the features of
Thy body, as the manners of thy mind,
Moor-lip'd, flat-nos'd, dim-ey'd and beetle-brow'd,
With a dwarfs ftature to a giant's waift:
Sour-breath'd, with claws for fingers on thy hands,
Splay-footed, gouty-leg'd, and over all

A loathfome leprofy had fpread itself,

And made thee fhun'd of human fellowships,
I had been bleft.

Rather than as now,

(Tho' I had drown'd thee for it in the fea) Appearing as thou doft a new Pandora, With Juno's fair cow-eyes, Minerva's brow, Aurora's blufhing cheeks, Hebe's fresh youth, Venus foft paps, and Thetis filver feet. The laft lines of Mafinger, are an immediate tranflation from a pretty Greek epigram, the author of which compares his miftreffes eyes to Juno's, her paps to Venus", &c.

A& 4. S. 1.

Ομματ' έχεις Ηρης, Μελίτη, τας χείρας Αθήνης,

Τις μάζες Παφίης, τα σφυρα της Θέτιδος, &

(5) Nature, &c.] In the Philoctetes of Sophocles, it is faid, Αλλ' ευγενης γαρ η φυσις, κα'ξ ευγενων

Ω τέκνον, η ση

Noble thy nature, as thy birth. my son.




SCENE V. The Horrors of unclofing a Conspiracy.
(6) I had a thing to fay-but, let it go :
The fun is in the heav'n, and the proud day,
Attended with the pleasures of the world,
Is all too wanton, and too full of gawds,
To give me audience. If the midnight bell,
Did with his iron tongue and brazen mouth
Sound one unto the drowsy race of night;

(6) I had, &c.] The reader cannot but be ftruck with the peculiar excellencies of this fpeech: we fee into the very workings of king John's troubled foul, while he is wishing yet afraid to difclofe his bloody purpofe to Hubert; and how finely does the author defcribe the fituation the mind fhou'd be in to hear and embrace fuch a propofal, the place fittest to disclose it in, the time most suitable to pour it into the bofom of the hearer. See Julius Cæfar, p. 97. Shakespear, when he would exprefs the most dreadful time of night, always fpeaks of the hours of twelve or ne; for that, in the vulgar opinion, was the peculiar time of ghosts and fpirits. In Midfummer Night's Dream, he fays,

The iron tongue of midnight hath told twelve.

And the ghoft in Hamblet juft then talks forth, when Bernarda giving an account of it comes to

The bell then beating one.

A most beautiful break, and finely imagin'd.

The king, in Beaumont and Fletcher's King and no King, is alike troubled and fearful to difclofe his intentions.

fays of him,

He has followed me

Thro' twenty rooms, and ever when I ftay
To wait's command, he blushes like a girl,
And looks upon me as if modesty

Kept in his bufinefs: fo turns away from me:
But if I go on, he follows me again.

And the king fays of himself,

I cannot utter it; why fhou'd I keep

A breaft to harbour thoughts I dare not fpeak?
Darkness is in my bofom, and there lie


A thoufand thoughts that cannot brook the light;
How wilt thou vex me, when this deed is done,
Confcience that art afraid to let me name it? A&F 3.

If this fame were a churchyard, where we stand,
And thou poffeffed with a thousand wrongs;
Or if that furly spirit melancholy

Had bak'd thy blood, and made it heavy-thick,
Which elfe runs tickling up and down the veins,
Making that ideot laughter keep mens eyes,
And ftrain their cheeks to idle merriment ;
(A paffion hateful to my purposes)

Or if that thou couldft fee me without eyes,
Hear me without thine ears, and make reply
Without a tongue, ufing conceit alone
Without eyes, ears, and harmful foul of words
Then in difpight of broad-ey'd watchful day,
I would into thy bofom pour my thoughts;-
But ah, I will not.

SCENE VI. A Mother's Ravings.

I am not mad; this hair I tear is mine;
My name is Conftance, I was Geffrey's wife 1-
Young Arthur is my fon, and he is loft,

I am not mad: I would to heav'n, I were !
For then 'tis like, 1 fhould forget myself.
Oh, if I could, what grief should I forget!
Preach fome philofophy to make me mad,
And thou shall be canoniz'd Cardinal,
For being not mad, but fenfible of grief,
My reasonable part produces reafon
How I may be deliver'd of these woes,
And teaches me to kill or hang myself.
If I were mad, I fhou'd forget my son,
Or madly think, a babe of clouts were he
I am not mad; too well, too well I feel,
The diff'rent plague of each calamity.

[blocks in formation]

A Mother's Grief.

Father Cardinal, I have heard you say,

That we fhall fee and know our friends in heav'n;
If that be, I fhall fee my boy again.

For fince the birth of Cain, the first male-child,
To him that did but yesterday fufpire,

There was not fuch a gracious creature born.
But now will canker forrow eat my bud,

And chafe the native beauty from his cheek;
And he will look as hollow as a ghoft;
As dim and meagre as an ague's fit;
And fo he'll die; and rifing so again,


When I fhall meet him in the court of heav'n,
I fhall not know him; therefore, never, never
Muft I behold my pretty Arthur more.
Pand. You hold too heinous a respect of grief.
Conft. He talks to me, that never had a son.-
K. Phil. You are as fond of grief, as of your
Conft. Grief fills the room up of my absent child;
Lies in his bed, walks up and down with me;
Puts on his pretty looks, repeats his words,
Remembers me of all his gracious parts;
Stuffs out his vacant garments with his form;
Then have I reafon to be fond of grief.

SCENE VII. Defpondency.

There's nothing in this world can make me joy ; (7) Life is as tedious as a twice told tale,

Vexing the dull ear of a drowsy man.

(7) Life, &c.] So in another part of the play he says, This act is as an ancient tale new told,

And in the last repeating troublesome.

I bring this paffage chiefly that the reader may more carefully dwell on the inimitable beauties of that in the text.


Departing Difeafes.

Before the curing of a strong disease, Ev'n in the inftant of repair and health, The fit is strongest: evils that take leave, On their departure, moft of all fhew evil.

Danger lays hold of any Support.

He that ftands upon a flipp'ry place, Makes nice of no vile hold to stay him up.

[blocks in formation]

Arthur's pathetick Speeches to Hubert.
Methinks, nobody fhould be fad but I ;
Yet I remember when I was in France,
Young gentlemen would be as fad as night,
Only for wantonnefs. By my Christendom,
So were I out of prison and kept sheep,
I should be merry as the day is long.

[blocks in formation]

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 afk 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 perform for you?
Many a poor man's fon 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 heav'n be pleas'd that you muft ufe me ill,


« AnkstesnisTęsti »