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SCENE III. A good Wife.
-A lofs of her,
That, like a jewel, has hung twenty years
About his neck, yet never loft her luftre;
Of her that loves him with that excellence,
That angels love good men with; even of her,
That when the greatest stroke of fortune falls
Will blefs the king.
SCENE V. The Bleffings of a low Station.
Tis better to be lowly born,
And range with humble livers in content,
Than to be perk'd up in a glitt'ring grief,
And wear a golden forrow.
SCENE VI. Queen Catharine's Speech to her
In what have I offended you? What cause
Hath my behaviour given to your difpleasure,
That thus you fhould proceed to put me off,
And take your good grace from me? Heav'n witness,
I've been to you a true and humble wife,
At all times to your will conformable:
(1) Horace thus advises in his 10th epiftle, L. I.
-Fuge magna, &c.
Forfake the gaudy tinfel of the great;
The peaceful cottage beckons a retreat :
Where true content a folid comfort brings
To kings unknown, or favourites of kings.
(2) Alas, Sir, &c.] The Reader will find in the 2d fcene of
the 3d act of the Winter's Tale, a fpeech, made by the queen, on being accufed by her husband, very fimilar to this: 'Tis fpoken in court, where the innocent Hermione appear'd, and was condemned by her jealous hufband.
glad or forry,
Ever in fear to kindle your dislike,
Yea, fubject to your count'nance;
As I faw it inclin'd: when was the hour,
I ever contradicted your defire?
Or made it not mine too? Which of your
Have I not ftrove to love, although I knew
He were mine enemy! ? What friend of mine,
That had to him deriv'd your anger, did I
Continue in my liking? Nay, give notice,
He was from thence difcharg'd. Sir, call to mind,.
That I have been your wife, in this obedience,
Upwards of twenty years; and have been bleft
With many children by you. If in the course
And procefs of this time, you can report,
And prove it too, against mine honour aught,
My bond of wedlock, or my love and duty
Against your facred perfon, in God's name,
Turn me away; and let the foul'st contempt
Shut door upon me, and fo give me up
To the fharpest kind of justice.
Queen Catharine's Speech to Cardinal Wolfey. -You are meek, and humble-mouth'd ;. You fign your place and calling, in full feeming, With meekness and humility: but your heart Is crainin'd with arrogancy, spleen, and pride : You have by fortune, and his highnefs's favours, Gone flightly o'er low steps; and now are mounted Where pow'rs are your retainers; and your words, Domesticks to you, ferve your will, as't please Yourfelf pronounce their office. I must tell you, You tender more your perfon's honour, than Your high profeffion fpiritual..
SCENE VII. King Henry's Character of Queen Catharine..
That man i'th'world who shall report he has A better wife, let him in nought be trusted,
For fpeaking falfe in that. Thou art alone
(If thy rare qualities, fweet gentleness,
Thy meekness faint-like, wife-like government
Obeying in commanding, and thy parts
Sovereign and pious, could but fpeak thee out)
The queen of earthly queens.
On her own Merit.
Have I liv'd thus long (let me fpeak myself,
Since virtue finds no friends) a wife, a true one?
A woman (I dare fay, without vain glory)
Never yet branded with fufpicion ?,
Have I, with all my full affections,
Still met the king lov'd him, next heav'n obey'd him?
Been, out of fondnefs, fuperftitious to him?
Almoft forgot my prayers to content him?
And am I thus rewarded? 'Tis not well, lords.
Bring me a conftant woman to her husband,
One, that ne'er dream'd a joy beyond his pleasure ;
And to that woman, when the has done moft,
Yet will I add an honour; a great patience.
Queen Catharine compared to a Lily.
--Like the lily,
That once was mistress of the field and flourish'd,
I'll hang my head and perish.
Obedience to Princes.
The hearts of princes kifs obedience,
So much they love it: but to stubborn spirits,
They fwell, and grow as terrible as storms.
Faerie Queene, B.2. c. 6. £ 16.
SCENE III. Horror, its outward Effects.
Some strange commotion
Is in his brain; he bites his lip, and starts;
Stops on a fudden, looks upon the ground,
Then lays his finger on his temple; ftrait,
Springs out into faft gait, then stops again;
Strikes his breast hard, and then, anon, he cafts
His eye against the moon: in most strange poftures
We've seen him fet himself.
-Though perils did
Abound, as thick as thought could make 'em, and
Appear in forms as horrid; yet my duty,
(4) As doth a rock against the chiding flood,
Should the approach of this wild river break,
And ftand unfhaken yours.
SCENE IV. Anger, its external Effects.
What fudden anger's this? How have I reap'd it? He parted frowning from me, as if ruin
(4) As doth, &c. This fimile is ufed both by Virgil and. Homer.
He, like a rock amidst the feas unmov'd,
Stands oppofite refifting; like a rock
Amidft the fea: which while the oaring tide
Encroaches, with its weight itself fuftains
Among the noify waves: in vain the cliffs-
Foaming rebellow loud and all around
The broken fea-weed dashes on its fides.
He like a rock, which o'er the ocean wide,
Hangs prominent, expos'd to winds and waves
And all the rage of fea and sky endures,
Leap'd from his eyes. (5) So looks the chafed lion Upon the daring huntfman, that has gall'd him; Then makes him nothing.
-Nay, then farewel!
I've touch'd the highest point of all my greatnefs
And, from that full meridian of my glory
I hafte now to my fetting. I fhall fall,
Like a bright exhalation in the evening,
And no man fee me more.
SCENE VI. The Viciffitudes of Life.
So farewel to the little good you bear me.
Farewel! a long farewel to all my greatness!
This is the ftate of man; to-day he puts forth
The tender leaves of hopes, to-morrow bloffoms,
And bears his blushing honours thick upon him
The third day comes a froft, a killing froft,
And when he thinks good eafy man, full furely
His greatnefs is a ripening, (6) nips his root,
And then he falls as I do; I have ventur'd,
Like little wanton boys, that fwim on bladders,
(5) So looks, &c.]
So when on fultry Libya's defert fand,
The lion fpies the hunter hard at hand :
Couch'd on the earth the doubtful favage lies,
And waits a while, till all his fury rife:
His lafhing tail provokes his fwelling fides,
And high upon his neck, his mane with horror rides :
Then, if at length the flying dart infest,
Or the broad fpear invade his ample breaft,
Scorning the wound, he yawns a dreadful roar,
And flies like lightning on the hostile Moor.
Rowe's Lucan, B. 1.
(6) Nips his rent.] It is plain the poet speaks of the deftruction of the tree by the froft nipping and killing the root, not the