Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

Here I cannot help taking notice that as the poet's want of art made it necessary to fet the queen to prate of her former crimes, to let us into the fable; so ignorance of human nature betrayed him, in a fucceeding scene, into the enormous abfurdity of making both Rodogune and the queen without hesitation, the one advise the lover to murder his mistress, the other the son to murder his mother. Here again an instance offers itself of our Shakespear's fuperior knowledge of the heart of man. King John wishes to instigate Hubert to kill Prince Arthur, but observe with what difficulty he expresses his horrid purpose.

King JOHN.
Come hither, Hubert. O my gentle Hubert,
We owe thee much; within this wall of Alella
There is a foul counts thee her creditor,
And with advantage means to pay thy love:
And, my good friend, thy voluntary oath
Lives in this bofom, dearly cherished.
Give me thy hand, I had a thing to fay
But I will fit it with some better time,

By

By heaven, Hubert, I'm almost asham'd
To say what good respect I have of thee.

HUBERT.
I am much bounden to your majesty.

King John.
Good friend, thou hast no cause to say so yet,-
But thou shalt have--and creep time ne'er so flow,
Yet it shall come for me to do thee good.
I had a thing to say—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 gaudes,
To give me audience. If the midnight bell
Did with his iron tongue and brazen mouth
Sound one unto the drowsy race of night;
If this same were a church-yard where we stand,
And thou possessed with a thousand wrongs ;
Or if that surly spirit melancholy
Had bak'd thy blood and made it heavy-thick,
Which else runs tickling up and down the veins,
Making that idiot laughter keep mens eyes,
And strain their cheeks to idle merriment;
(A passion hateful to my purposes)
Or if thou could'st see me without

eyes, Hear me without thine ears, and make reply

Without

Without a tongue, using conceit alone,
Without eyes, ears, and harmful found of words ;
Then, in despight of broad-ey'd watchful day,
I would into thy bosom pour my thoughts :
But ah, I will not yet I love thee well;
And, by my troth, I think, thou lor'ft me well.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

The poet's eye, iri a fine frenzy rolling,
Doth glance from heav'n to earth, from earth to heav'n,
And, as imagination bodies forth
The forms of things unknown, the poet's pen
Turns them to shape, and gives to airy nothing
A local habitation and a name.

Midsummer Night's Dream.

« ZurückWeiter »