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the wise, (if Don Worm, his conscience, find no impe-
Beat. Very ill.
Bene. Serve God, love me, and mend: there will I leave you too, for here comes one in haste.
Enter URSULA. Urs. Madam, you must come to your uncle; yonder 's old coil at home:3 it is proved, my lady Hero hath been falsely accused, the prince and Claudio mightily abused; and Don John is the author of all, who is fled and gone: Will you come presently?
Beat. Will you go hear this news, signior?
Bene. I will live in thy heart, die in thy lap, and be buried in thy eyes; and, moreover, I will go with thee to thy uncle's.
The inside of a Church.
musick and tapers.
Done to death by slanderous tongues,
Was the Hero that here lies:
Gives her fame which never dies:
old coil at home :) So, in King Henry IV, P. II, Act II, sc. iv: “By the mass, here will be old Utis." See note on this passage. Old, (I know not why) was anciently a common augmentative in familiar language. Coil is bustle, stir. So, in King Fohn:'
“ I am not worth this coil that's made for me.” Steevens. 4 Done to death-] This obsolete phrase occurs frequently in our ancient writers. Thus, in Marlowe's Lust's Dominion, 1657:
“ His mother's hand shall stop thy breath,
So the life, that died with shame,
Praising her when I am dumb.
To do to death is merely an old translation of the French phrase -Faire mourir. Steevens.
5 — in guerdon-] Guerdon is reward, remuneration. See Costard's use of this word in Love's Labour's Lost, Act III, sc. i, The verb, to guerdon, occurs both in King Henry VI, P. II, and in King Henry VIII. Steevens.
6 Those that slew thy virgin knight;] Knight, in its original sig. nification, means follower, or pupil, and in this sense may be feminine. Helena, in All's well that ends well, uses knight in the same signification. Fohnson.
Virgin knight is virgin hero. In the times of chivalry, a virgin knight was one who had as yet achieved no adventure. Hero had as yet achieved no matrimonial one. It may be added, that a virgin knight wore no device on his shield, having no right to any till he had deserved it.
So, in The History of Clyomon, Knight of the Golden Shield, &c. 1599:
" Then as thou seem'st in thy attire a virgin knight to be,
“ Take thou this shield likewise of white,” &c. It appears, however, from several passages in Spenser's Faery Queene, B. I, c. vii, that an ideal order of this name was supposed, as a compliment to Queen Elizabeth's virginity:
“Of doughtie knights whom faery land did raise
“ That noble order hight of maidenhed.” Again, B. II, c. ji:
“ Order of maidenhed the most renown'd.” Again, B. II, c. ix:
“ And numbred be mongst knights of maidenhed.” On the books of the Stationers Company in the year 1594, is entered, “— - Pheander the mayden knight.” Steevens.
I do not believe that any allusion was here intended to Hero's having yet achieved “no matrimonial adventure.” Diana's knight or Virgin knight, was the common poetical appellation of virgins, in Shakspeare's time. So, in The Two Noble Kinsmen, 1634: “O sacred, shadowy, cold and constant queen,
who to thy female knights
For the which, with songs of woe,
Midnight, assist our moan;
Yearly will I do this rite.
Dapples the drowsy east with spots of grey: Thanks to you all, and leave us; fare you well.
Claud. Good morrow, masters; each his several way.
D. Pedro. Come, let us hence, and put on other weeds; And then to Leonato's we will go.
Claud. And, Hymen, now with luckier issue speed 's, Than this, for whom we render'd up this woe!8 [Exeunt.
Again, more appositely in Spenser's Faery Queene, B. III, c. xii:
“Soon as that virgin knight he saw in place,
“ His wicked bookes in hast he overthrew." Malone. This last instance will by no means apply; for the virgin knight is the maiden Britomart, who appeared in the accoutrements of a knight, and from that circumstance was so denominated.
Steevens. 7 Till death be uttered,] I do not profess to understand this line, which to me appears both defective in sense and metre. pose two words have been omitted, which perhaps were –
songs of death be uttered, &c. So, in King Richard III:
“Out on you, owls! nothing but songs of death ?” Steevens. 8 And, Hymen, now with luckier issue speed 's,
Than this, for whom we render'd up this woe!] The old copy has_speeds. Steevens.
Claudio could not know, without being a prophet, that this new proposed match should have any luckier event than that designed with Hero. Certainly, therefore, this should be a wish in Claudio; and to this end, the poet might have wrote, speed's; i. e. speed us: and so it becomes a prayer to Hymen. Thirlby.
The contraction introduced is so extremely harsh, that I doubt whether it was intended by the author. However I have followed former editors in adopting it. Malone.
A Room in LEONATO's House. Enter LEONATO, ANTONIO, BENEDICK, BEATRICE,
URSULA, FRIAR, and HERO. Friar. Did I not tell you she was innocent?
Leon. So are the prince and Claudio, who accus'd her, Upon the error that you heard debated: But Margaret was in some fault for this; Although against her will, as it appears In the true course of all the question.
Ant. Well, I am glad that all things sort so well.
Bene. And so am I, being else by faith enforc’d To call young Claudio to a reckoning for it.
Leon. Well, daughter, and you gentlewomen all,
Ant. Which I will do with confirm'd countenance.
Bene. To bind me, or undo me, one of them.-
Leon. That eye my daughter lent her; 'Tis most true.
Leon. The sight whereof, I think, you had from me, From Claudio, and the prince; But what 's your will?
Bene. Your answer, sir, is enigmatical:
Leon. My heart is with your liking.
And my help.
sc. ï :
9 In the state of honourable marriage;] Marriage, in this instance, is used as a trisyllable. So, in The Taming of the Shrew, Act III,
“'Twere good, methinks, to steal our marriage.” Steevens.
Here comes the prince, and Claudio.
Enter Don Pedro and CLAUDIO, with Attendants.
Leon. Good morrow, prince; good morrow, Claudio;
[Exit Ant. D. Pedro. Good morrow, Benedick: Why, what 's the
Claud. I think, he thinks upon the savage bull:1-
Bene. Bull Jove, sir, had an amiable low;
Re-enter ANTONIO, with the Ladies mask'd.
Ant. This same is she,3 and I do give you her.
face. Leon. No, that you shall not, till you take her hand Before this friar, and swear to marry her.
1—the savage bull:] Still alluding to the passage quoted in a former scene from Kyd's Hieronymo. Steevens.
2 And all Europa shall &c.] I have no doubt but that our author wrote
And all our Europe &c. So, in King Richard II:
“ As were our England in reversion his.” Steevens. 3 Ant. This same &c.] This speech is in the old copies given to Leonato. Mr. Theobald first assigned it to the right owner. Leonato has in a former part of this scene told Antonio,—that he “must be father to his brother's daughter, and give her to young Claudio." Malone.