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crown of Naples, Alonzo promises to resign his claim of sove
reignty for the future.
STEEVENS. Line 156. who three hours since-] It may be here remarked, that in this play our author has throughout rigidly attended to the unity of time.
Line 160. I am woe for't, Sir.] i. e. I am sorry for it. To woe, is often used by old writers to signify to be sorry. STEEVENS. Line 168. As great to me, as late;] My loss is as great as yours, and has as lately happened to me. JOHNSON.
Are natural breath:- -] Mr. Malone with great propriety conceives, that these words would improve the meaning
of the passage.
playing at chess.] This game was well known before our author's time.
Line 200. Yes, for a score of kingdoms,-] I take the sense to be only this: Ferdinand would not, he says, play her false for the world; yes, answers she, I would allow you to do it for something less than the world, for twenty kingdoms, and I wish you well enough to allow you, after a little wrangle, that your play was fair. So likewise Dr. Grey. JOHNSON.
I would recommend another punctuation, and then the sense would be as follows:
Yes, for a score of kingdoms you should wrangle,
Line 253. When no man was his own.] For when perhaps should be read where,
Line 270. My tricksy spirit!] i, e. Clever.
Was ever conduct of ;
-] i. e. Had the conduct
with beating on
The strangeness, &c.] A similar expression occurs
in one of the parts of Henry VI.
"Beat on a crown."
Line 298. (Which to you shall seem probable)—] Prospero's meaning is: "I will relate to you the means by which I have been "enabled to accomplish these ends; which means, though they
"now appear strange and improbable, will then appear other"wise."
Line 308. Coragio,-] i. e. Take courage.
320.-true :-- -] That is, honest. A true man is, in the language of that time, opposed to a thief. The sense is, Mark what these men wear, and say if they are honest.
Line 321. His mother was a witch; and one so strong
That could control the moon, &c.] In the time of our author certain statutes were in force against witchcraft, and it was probable, that this expression might arise out of so weak and wicked a belief. To the disgrace of this country, having then so far approached towards civilization, prosecutions were carried on, and many innocent old women were condemned in various ways, for their supernatural agencies, vide Law Reports. The charge of witchcraft, with much greater propriety, might (I should think, in all ages) be applied to young ladies than to old hags.
Line 332. And Trinculo is reeling ripe; where should they
Find this grand LIQUOR that hath gilded them?] Shakspeare, to be sure, wrote-grand 'LIXIR, alluding to the grand Elixir of the alchymists, which they pretend would restore youth and confer immortality. This, as they said, being a preparation of gold they called Aurum potabile; which Shakspeare alluded to in the word gilded. But the joke here is to insinuate that, not withstanding all the boasts of the chymists, sack was the only restorer of youth, and bestower of immortality. WARBURTON. As the Elixir was a liquor, the old reading may stand, and the allusion holds good without any alteration. STEEVENS.
END OF THE ANNOTATIONS ON THE TEMPEST.
LINE 2. Home-keeping youth have ever homely wits:] Milton has
the same play on words:
"It is for homely features to keep home,
"They had their name thence."
Line 8. shapeless idleness.] The expression is fine, as implying that idleness prevents the giving any form or character to the manners. WARBURTON.
Line 27. sion, though now disused, signifying, don't make a laughing stock of me; don't play upon me. The French have a phrase, Bailler foin en corne; which Cotgrave thus interprets, To give one the boots; to sell him a bargain. THEOBALD,
nay, give me not the boots.] A proverbial expres
Line 37. However, but a folly-] This love will end in a foolish action, to produce which you are long to spend your wit; or it will end in the loss of your wit, which will be overpowered by the folly of love, JOHNSON,
Line 61. At Milan, &c.] i. e. Let your letters be addressed to me at Milan.
Line 73, Made wit with musing weak,—] For made read make.
Thou, Julia, hast made me war with good counsel, and make wit weak with musing. JOHNSON.
Line 74. Enter Speed.] This whole scene, like many others in these plays (some of which I believe were written by Shakspeare, and others interpolated by the players) is composed of the lowest and most trifling conceits, to be accounted for only from the gross taste of the age he lived in; Populo ut placerent. РОРЕ.
That this, like many other scenes, is mean and vulgar, will be universally allowed; but that it was interpolated by the players seems advanced without any proof, only to give a greater licence to criticism. JOHNSON.
Line 103. I, a lost mutton, gave your letter to her, a laced mutton;- -] Speed calls himself a lost mutton, because he had lost his master, and because Protheus had been proving him a sheep. But why does he call the lady a laced mutton? Wenchers are to this day called mutton-mongers; and consequently the object of their passion must, by the metaphor, be the mutton. And Cotgrave, in his English-French Dictionary, explains laced mutton, Une garse, putain, fille de joye. So that laced mutton has been a sort of standard phrase for girls of pleasure. THEOBALD.
Nash, in his Have with you to Saffron Walden, 1595, speaking of Gabriel Harvey's incontinence, says, he would not stick to extoll rotten laced mutton.
So in Whetstone's Promos and Cassandra, 1578.
"And I smelt he lov'd laced mutton well."
Again Heywood, in his Love's Mistress, 1636, speaking of Cupid, says, he is the " Hero of hie-hoes, admiral of ay-me's, and monsieur of mutton laced." STEEVENS.
Line 110. Nay, in that you are ̧astray;- -] For the reason Protheus gives, Dr. Thirlby advises that we should read, a stray, i, e. a stray sheep; which continues Protheus's banter upon Speed. THEOBALD.
-did she nod?] These words have been supplied by some of the editors, to introduce what follows.
Line 148. -telling her mind.] The old copy reads your