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To giue thee knowledge when to cut the cord,
Stand close, for here they come why, is not this
Now tell me, worldlings, vnderneath the sunne,
Enter Calymath and Bashawes.
Caly. Come, my Companion-Bashawes, see I pray
To entertaine vs in his Gallery ;
Bar. Will't please thee, mighty Selim-Calymath,
To ascend our homely stayres?
Caly. I, Barabas, come Bashawes, attend.
Gov. Stay, Calymath;
For I will shew thee greater curtesie
Then Barabas would haue affoorded thee.
JA charge, the cable cut,
Cal. How now, what means this?
See his end first, and flye then if thou canst.
2332 sun Reed
2329 After come s.D. Ferneze retires add. Dyce etc. summe 1633 2339+S.D. Aside add. Dyce 2342 attend] ascend Dyce, Wag. 2346 Prefix Knight [within] Dyce. 2346+ S.D. A charge sounded within: Ferneze cuts the cord; the floor of the gallery gives way, and Barabas falls into a caldron placed in a pit Dyce S.D. Enter Knights and Martin Del Bosco add. Dyce
No, thus I'le see thy treachery repaid,
But wish thou hadst behau'd thee otherwise.
Bar. (And villaines, know you cannot helpe me now.
Bar. You will not helpe me then?
Gov. No, villaine, no.
Then Barabas breath forth thy latest fate,
And in the fury of thy torments, striue
Know, Gouernor, 'twas I that slew thy sonne ;
To end thy life with resolution:
I fram'd the challenge that did make them meet :
I would haue brought confusion on you all,
Dye life, flye soule, tongue curse thy fill and dye.
Caly. Tell me, you Christians, what doth this portend?
But I haue rather chose to saue thy life.
Caly. Was this the banquet he prepar'd for vs ?
Let's hence, lest further mischiefe be pretended.
Gov. Nay, Selim, stay, for since we haue thee here,
We will not let thee part so suddenly :
Besides, if we should let thee goe, all's one,
For with thy Gallyes couldst thou not get hence,
Without fresh men to rigge and furnish them.
Caly. Tush, Gouernor, take thou no care for that,
And doe attend my comming there by this.
My men are all aboord,
Gov. Why, hardst thou not the trumpet sound a charge?
Gov. Why, then the house was fir'd,
Blowne vp, and all thy souldiers massacred.
Caly. Oh monstrous treason!
Gov. A lewes curtesie:
For he that did by treason worke our fall,
By treason hath deliuered thee to vs :
Know therefore, till thy father hath made good
2370 Christian Dyce, Cunn.,
2362 fate] hate Cunn., Bull. Wag. 2373+S.D. Dies add. Reed
Thou canst not part: for Malta shall be freed.
Caly. Nay rather, Christians, let me goe to Turkey,
Gov. Content thee, Calymath, here thou must stay,
So march away, and let due praise be giuen
2405 in Malta] 2410+ S.D. Exeunt
Date. Edward II is generally agreed to be the maturest and, with the possible exception of the Massacre at Paris, the latest of Marlowe's plays. There is, however, very little external evidence by which to determine the precise year of composition. Henslowe makes no mention of the acting of this piece, as it was in the possession of a rival companythe Earl of Pembroke's-to which we may conclude that Marlowe transferred his services after the completion of the Jew of Malta (? 1590), the latter play having been certainly, like its predecessors, Tamburlaine and Doctor Faustus, one of Henslowe's repertoire.1
On July 6, 1593, one month after Marlowe's death, William Jones registered the play under the following designation: A booke Intituled The troublesom Reign and Lamentable Death of EDWARD the SECOND, king of England, with the tragicall fall of proud MORTYMER.' As the editions of Jones, the earliest of which probably belongs to 1593,2 declare on the title-page that the play had been sondry times publiquely acted in the honorable Cittie of London, By the right honorable the Earle of Pembroke his Seruants,' 3 we must assume, what in any case would be probable, that the tragedy had been known on the stage for a considerable time before it came into the hands of the printer. The year 1591, or the early part of 1592, seems then the most likely date for the completion of Edward II and its first theatrical presentation.
Editions. Edward II survives in quarto editions, dated 1594, 1598, 1612, 1622, the first two having been published by William Jones. I have elsewhere 4 given my reasons
1 If the Massacre at Paris is later than Edward II, the poet would seem to have renewed his connexion with Henslowe, for the Diary records the acting of the former tragedy as a new play' on January 30, 1593.
2 Cf. infra.
Quoted from the MS. title-page of ed. ?1593. The statement is repeated on the title-pages of 1594, 1598, and 1612.
for believing that Jones had already, before the end of the year 1593, issued a version of the play, of which no copy is now known to exist. An eighteenth-century manuscript in the South Kensington Museum purports, however, to reproduce the title-page and the first seventy lines of this edition. The quarto of 1594 has itself been known only during the last two generations, and its text, superior in a great many details to that of 1598, is here for the first time reprinted. Two copies of this 1594 edition have so far been discovered, of which my text follows that preserved in the Landesbibliothek of Cassel, Germany.
Concerning the stage history of Edward II there appears to be no information except that given on the title-pages of the early editions, namely, that the play was acted by the Earl of Pembroke's men, and, as we learn from the edition of 1622, that it was revived by the late Queenes Maiesties Seruants at the Red Bull in S. Johns streete'.1 Henslowe's Diary makes casual mention of two lost plays, which may or may not have borne some relation to ours. In March, 1588/9 he notes the payment of £6 to the dramatists Chettle and Porter for a work called the Spencers', and in September, 1602, he expends £6 18s. on properties for the 'playe of mortymore'.
Text. Marlowe's authorship of Edward II is stated on all the early title-pages and has never been questioned. Publication followed so close on composition in the case of this play that there is no reason to suspect the presence of alien matter, and the text is probably purer than that of any other of Marlowe's dramatic works, though small printers' errors are common enough in the last three editions. As the best preserved of the poet's tragedies, and much the most perfect in all matters of technical skill; as the first considerable history play in the English language; and as the textbook from which Shakespeare undoubtedly learned many lessons of dramatic art, later to be used in Richard II and in Henry IV, this play of Edward II makes a special appeal to the student of dramatic evolution. It is no injustice to these high merits to add that many lovers of Marlowe will turn rather less often to Edward II than to Tamburlaine, Doctor Faustus, or Hero and Leander. To the very end there appears in Marlowe's writing no sign
1 Queen Anne's men played at the Red Bull between 1609 and the death of their patroness in 1619. Cf. Fleay, History of the London