Abbildungen der Seite

The senator shall bear contempt hereditary,
The beggar native honour.

It is the pastor kards the brother's sides,
The want that makes him leave. Who dares, who

In and denude obar lord, So lord Rea in his relation of M. Hamilton's plot, written in 1630, “ All these Hamiltons had denuded themselves of their fortunes

" and estates." And Charles the Firft, in his message to the parliament, says, “ Derude ourselves of all." -Clar. vol. 3. p. 15. octavo edit.

WARBURTON. I believe the former reading to be the true one. Raise me that beggar, and deny a proportionable degree of elevation to that lord. A lord is not so high a title in the late, but that a man originally poor might be railed to one above it. Steevens.

o li is the papure lards she beggar's fidei,? This, as the editors have ordered it, is an idle repetition at the best; supposing it did, indeed, contain the same sentiment as the foregoing lines. But Shakespeare meant a quite different thing: and having, like a sensible writer, made a smart observation, he illustrates it by a fimilitude thus,

It is the pasture lards the weather's fides,

The want that makes bim lean. And the fimilitude is extremely beautiful, as conveying this fatirical reflection; there is no more difference between man and man in the esteem of superficial and corrupt judgments, than between a fat Meep and a lean one.

WAR BURTON This passage is very obscure, nor do I discover any clear sense, even though we hould admit the emendation. Let us inspect the text as I have given it from the original edition,

It is the pastour lards tbe brother's sides,

Tbe awant that makes him leave.
Dr. Warburton found the passage already changed thus,

It is the pasture lards the beggar's fides,

The want that makes him lean. And upon this reading of no authority, raised another equally' uncertain.

Alterations are never to be made without neceffity. Let us see What sense the genuine reading will afford. Poyerty, says the poes,


[ocr errors]

In purity of manhood stand upright,
And say, This man's a flatterer ? if one be,
So are they all ; 'for every greeze of fortune
Is smooth'd by that below. The learned pace
Ducks to the golden fool. All is oblique ;
There's nothing level in our cursed natures,
But direct villany. Therefore be abhorr'd,
All feasts, societies, and throngs of men!
His semblable, yea, himself, Timon disdains.
Destruction fang mankind !-Earth, yield me roots!

[Digging the earth.
Who seeks for better of thee, sawce his palate
With thy most operant poison! What is here?
Gold ? yellow, glittering, precious gold ? No, Gods;
I am no - idle votarist. Roots, you clear heavens !
Thus much of this, will make black, white; foul, fair;
Wrong, right; base, noble; old, young; coward,


bears contempi bereditary, and wealth native banour. To illuftrate this position, having already mentioned the case of a poor and rich brother, he remarks, that this preference is given to wealth by those whom it least becomes ; it is tbe paftour that greases or fasters the rich brother, and will grease him on till want makes him leavt. The poet then goes on to ask, Who dares to say this man, this pastour, is a flatterer; the crime is universal ; through all the world the learned pate, with allusion to the paftour, ducks to ibe golden feel. If it be objected, as it may juftly be, that the mention of paštour is unsuitable, we must remember the mention of grace and cherubims in this play, and many such anachronisms in many others. I would therefore read thus:

It is the paflour lards the brorber's fides,

'Tis want that makes him leave. The obscurity is ftill great. Perhaps a line is lost. I have at leaft given the original reading.

JOHNSON. for every greeze of fortune) Greeze for step or degree.

POPE. no idle volarif.) No infincere or inconftant supplicant. Gold will not serve me instead of roots,



Ha! you Gods! why this ? What? This you Gods?

3 Why this Will lug your priests and servants from your sides : * Pluck stout mens' pillows from below their heads. This yellow slave Will knit and break religions ; bless the accurs'd; Make the hoar leprosy ador'd; place thieves, And give them title, knee, and approbation, With senators on the bench : this is it, That makes the wappen'd widow wed again :


Why this Will lug your priefts and fervants from your fides :) Aristophanes, in his platus, Aa V. Scene 2. makes the priest of Jupiter desert his service to live with Plutus.

WARBURTON. * Pluck ftout mens' pillows from below their beads.) i. e, men who have strength yet remaining to ftruggle with their distemper. This alludes to an old custom of drawing away the pillow from under the heads of men in their last agonies, to make their departure the Cafier. But the Oxford editor, supposing fout to signify healıby, alters it to fick, and this he calls emending. WARBURTON.

That makes the wappen'd widow wed again;] Waped or wappen'd fignifies both sorrowful and terrified, either for the loss of a good husband, or by the treatment of a bad. But gold, he says, can overcome both her affection and her fears.

WARBURTON. Of wappened I have found no example, nor know any meaning. To awhape is used by Spenser in his Hubberd's Tale, but I think not in either of the lenses mentioned. I would read wained, for decayed by time. So our author in Richard the Third,

A beauty-waining and distressed widow. JOHNSON. In the comedy of the Roaring Girl by Middleton and Decker, 1611, I meet with a word very like this, which the reader will casily explain for himself, when bas read the following passage, Moll. And there


with me.
Sir B. Nay, Moll, what's that wap?
Moll. Wappening and niggling is all one, the rogue my man

can tell you. It must not, however, be concealed, that Chaucer, in the Come plaint of Annelida, line 217, uses the word in the sense which Dr. Warburton explains it:

of My

[ocr errors]

She, whom the spital-house, and ulcerous fores
Would cast the gorge at, this embalms and spices
• To the April day again. Come, damned earth,
Thou common whore of mankind, that putt'ít odds
Among the rout of nations, I will make thee
? Do thy right nature:-[March afar off. ]-Ha! a

drum.– Thou'rt quick,
But yet I'll bury thee. Thou'lt go, strong thief,
When gouty keepers of thee cannot stand :-
-Nay, stay thou out for earnest. [Keeping some gold.
Enter Alcibiades, with drum and fife in warlike manner,

and Pbrynia and Timandra.
Alc. What art thou there? speak.

Tim. A beast, as thou art. Cankers gnaw thy heart, For shewirg me again the eyes of man.

Alc. What is thy name? Is man so hateful to thee,
That art thyself a man?

Tim. I am Mifanthropos, and hate mankind.
For thy part, I do wish thou wert a dog,
That I might love thee something.

Alc. I know thee well;
But in thy fortunes am unlearn'd, and strange.
Tim. I know thee too; and more, than that I

know thee,
I not desire to know. Follow thy drum ;

My sewertye in waped countenance.” Wappened, according to the quotation I have already made, would mean-The widow whose curiosity ant paffions bad been already grant. fied. I believe, however, there is still lome corruption in the text.

STEEVENS. 6 To the April day again.

.] That is, to the wedding day, called by the poet, satirically, April day, or fol's day.

Johnson. ? Dorby right nature. -] Lie in the earth where nature laid thee,

Johnson. Ti cu’rt quick,] Thou hast life and motion in thec.


[ocr errors]

With man's blood paint the ground. Gules, gules:
Religious canons, civil laws are cruel;
Then what should war be? This fell whore of thine
Hath in her more destruction than thy sword,
For all her cherubin look.

Pbry. Thy lips rot off!

Tim. I will not kiss thee; then the rot returns To thine own lips again.

Alc. How came the noble Timon to this change?

Tim. As the moon does, by wanting light to give:
But then renew I could not, like the moon,
There were no funs to borrow of.

Alc. Noble Timon,
What friendship may I do thee?

Tim. None, but to
Maintain my opinion.

Alc. What is it, Timon ?

Tim. Promise me friendship, but perform none. If
'Thou wilt not promise, the Gods plague thee, for
Thou art a man; if thou dost perform, confound thee,
For thou art a man!

Alc. I have heard in some sort of thy miseries.
Tim. Thou saw'st them, when I had prosperity.
Alc. I see them now; then was a blessed time.
Tim. As thine is now, held with a brace of harlots.

Timan. Is this the Athenian minion, whom the world
Voic'd so regardfully?

Tim. Art thou Timandra ?
Timan. Yes.

9 I will not kiss thee, —] This alludes to an opinion in former times, generally prevalent, that the venereal infection transmitted to another, left the infecter free. I will not, says Timon, take the rot from thy lips by kissing thee.


Thou wilt not promise, &c.] That is, however thou may'st act, since thou art man, hated man, I wish thee evil.




« ZurückWeiter »