Abbildungen der Seite

ne addition of variety, by the art with which he is made to cooperate with the chief design, and the opportunity which he gives the poet of combining persidy with perfidy, and connect ing the wicked son with the wicked daughters, to impress this important inoral, that villany is never at a stop, that criines lead to crimes, and at last terminate iu rnin.

But though this moraf be incidentally enforced, Shakspeare has suffered the virtue of Cor. delia to perish in a just cause, contrary to the natural ideas of justice, to the hope of the reader, and what is yet more strange, to the faith of chronicler Yet this conduct is justified by The SPECTATOR, who blames Tate for giving Cordelia success and happiness in his alteration, and declares, that in his opinion, “ the tragedy has lost half its beauty." Dennis bas remarked, whether justly or not, that, to secure the favourable reception of “ Cato, the town was poisoned with much false and abominable criticism," and that endeavours had been nsed to discredit and decry poetical justice. A play in which the wieked prosper, and the virtuous miscarry, may doubtless be good, because it is a just representation of the common events of human life : but since alt reasonable beings naturally love justice, I cannot easily be persuaded, thal the observation of justice makes a play worse; or that if other excellen. cies are equal, the audience will not always rise better pleased from the final triumph of persecuted virtue.

In the present case, the public has decided. Cordelia, from the time of Tate, has always retired with victory and felicity. And, if my sensations could add any thing to the general suffrage, I might relate, I was many years ago so shocked by Cordelia's deaih, that I know not whether l'ever endared to read again the last scenes of the play till I undertook to revise them as an editor.

There is another controversy among the critics concerning this play. It is disputed whe. ther the predominant image in Lear's disordered miud be the loss of his kingdom, or the cruelty of his daughters. Mr. Murphy, a very judicious critic, bas evinced by induction of particular passages, that the cruelty of his daughters is the primary source of his distress, and that the loss of royalty affecte him only as a secondary and subordinate evil. He observes, with great justness, that Lear would move our compassion but little, did we not rather consider the injured father than the degraded king.

The story of this play, except the episode of Edmund, which is derived, I thiuk, from Sidney, is taken originally from Geoffry of Monmouth, whom Holingshed generally copied ; but perhaps iminediately from an old historical ballad. My reason for believing that the play was posterior to the ballad, rather than the ballad to the play, is, that the ballad has nothing of Shakspeare's nocturnal tempest, which is too strikiug to have been omitted, and that it follows the chronicle; it has the rudiments of the play, but none of its amplifications : it first hinted Lear's madness, but did not array it in circumstances. The writer of the balJad added soinething to the history, which is a proof that he would have added more,

if inore had occurred to his mind, and more must have occurred if he had seen Shakspeare.



Persons, represented.
ESCALUS, Prince of Verona.

ABRAM, servant to Montague.
Paris, a young nobleman, kinsman to the An Apothecary.

Three Musicians.
MONTAGUE, heads of two houses, at CHORUS

Boy, page to Paris.

PETEE CAPULET, } variance with each other. An Officer An Old Man, uncle to Capulet. ROMEO, son to Montague.

Lady MONTAGUE, wife to Montague. MERCUTIO, kinsman to the Prince, and Lady CAPULET, wife to Capulet. friend to Romeo.

JULTET, daughter to Capulet. BENVOL10, nephew lo Montague, and friend Nurse to Juliet.

to Romeo. TYBALT, nephew to Lady Capulet.

Citizens of Verona ; several Men and WoFriar LAWRENCE, a Franciscan.

men, relations to both houses ; Maskers, Friar Jonn, of the same order.

Guards, Watchmen, and Attendunts. BALTHAZAR, servant to Romeo,

Scene,-during the greater part of the SAMPSON; } servants to Capulet.

Play, in Verona : once in the fifth scr, at Mantua.

PROLOGUE. Two households, both alike in dignity, The fearful passage of their death-mark'd love,

In fair Verona, where we lay our scene, And the continuance of their parents' rage, From ancient grudge break to new mutiny, Which, but their children's end, nought could Where civil blood makes civil hands onclean.

remove, From forth the fatal loins of these two foes Is now the two hours' traffic of oor stage;

A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life; The which if you with patient ears attend, Whose misadventured piteous overthrows What here shall miss, our toil shall strive to

Do, with their death,bury their parents' strife. ) mend.

SCENE I. A public Place.

Gre. That shows thee a weak slave; for the

weakest goes to the wall. Enter SAMPSON and GREGORY, armed with

Sam. Irne; and therefore women, being Swords and Bucklers.

the weaker vessels, are ever throst to the wall: Sam. Gregory, o'my word we'll not carry therefore I will push Montague's men from the coals

wall, and thrast his maids to the wall. Gre. No, for then we should be colliers. Gre. The quarrel is between our wasters, Sam. I mean, an we be in choler, we'll draw. and us their men.

Gre. Ay, while you live, draw your neck Sam. "Tis all one, I will show myself a ty. out of the collar.

rant: when I have fought with the men, I will Sam. I strike quickly, being moved. be cruel with the maids; I will cut off their

Gre. But thou art not quickly moved to heads. strike,

Gre. The beads of the maids? Sam. A dog of the house of Montague Sam. Ay, the heads of the maids, or their moves me.

maidenheads; take it in what sense thou wilt. Gre. To move, is—to stir; and to be valiant, Gre. They must take it in sense, that feel it. is-to stand to it: therefore, if thou art moved, Sam. Me they shall feel, while I am able to thou ruun'st away.

stand: and, 'tis known, I am a pretty piece of Sum. A dog of that house shall move me to tesh. stand: I will take the wall of any man or inaid Gre, 'Tis well thon art not fish; if thoa of Montague's.

hadst, thou hadst been poor John to Draw thy • A phrase formerly in use to signify the bearing injuries.

† Poor John is hake, dried and salted.

tool; here comes two of the house of the Mon- La. Mon. Thou sbalt not stir one foot to seek tagues

a foe, Enter ABRAM and BALTHASAR.

Enter Prince, with Attendants. Sam. My naked weapon is out; quarrel, I Prin. Rebellious subjects, enemies to peace, will back thee.

Profaners of this neighbour-stained steel,Gre. How? turn thy back and run? Will they not hear ?—what ho! you men, you Sam. Fear me not.

beasts, Gre. No, marry: I fear thee!

That quench the fire of your pernicious rage Sam. Let us take the law of our sides; let With purple fountains issuing from your veins, them begin

On pain of torture, from those bloody hands Gre. I will frown, as I pass by; and let Throw your mistemper'di weapons to the them take it as they list.

ground, Sam. Nay, as they dare. I will bite my And hear the sentence of your moved prince.thumb at them; wbich is a disgrace to them, Three civil brawls, bred of an airy word, if they bear it.

By thee, old Capulet and Montague, Abr. Do yon bite your thumb at us, sir? Have thrice disturb'd the quiet of our streets ; Sam. I do bite my thumb, sir.

And made Verona's ancient citizens Abr. Do you bite your thumb at us, sir ? : Cast by their grave beseeming ornaments, Sam. Is the law on our side, if I say,-ay? To wield old partisans, in bands as old, Gre. No.

Cankerd with peace, to part your canker'd Sam. No, sir, I do not bite my thumb at If ever you disturb our streets again, (hate : you, şir; but I bite my thumb, sir.

Your lives shall pay the forfeit of the peace. Gre. Do you quarrel, sir?

For this time, all the rest depart away : Abr. Quarrel, sir? no, sir.

You, Capulet, shall go along with me; Sam. If you do, sir, I am for you; I serve And, Montagne, come you this afternoon, as good a man as you.

To know our further pleasure in this case,[place, Abr. No better.

To old Free-town, our common judgmentSam. Well, sir,

Once more, en pain of death, all men depart. Enter Benvolto, at a distance.

[Exeunt Prince, and Attendants ; CAGre. Say--better; here comes one of my PULET, Lady CAPULET, TYBALT, master's kinsmen.

Citizens, and Servants. (abroach. Sam. Yes, better, sir.

Mon. Who get this ancient quarrel new Abr. You lie.

Speak, nephew, were you by when it began? Sam. Draw, if you he men.- -Gregory, re

Ben. Here were the servants of your ad vermember thy swashing blow. [They fight.

sary Ben. Part, fools ; put up your swords ; you And yours, close fighting ere I did approach: know not what you do.

I drew to part them; in the instant came [Beats down their Swords. The fiery Tybalt, with his sword prepared ; Eiter TYBALT.

Which, as he breathed defiance to my ears, Tyb. What! art thon drawn among these He swung about his head, and cnt the winds, heartless hinds?

Who nothing hurt withal, hiss'il him in scorn: Turn thee, Benvolio, look upon thy death. While we were interchanging thrusts and Ben. I do but keep the peace; put up thy


(purt, sword,

Came more and more, and fought on part and Or manage it to part these men with me. Till the prince came, who parted either part. Tyb. What, sirawn and talk of peace ? I La. Mon.0, where is Romeo !-saw yon him hate the word,

to-day? As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee: Right glad I am, he was not at this fray. (sun Have at thee, coward.

[They fight. Ben. Madan, an hour before the worshipp'd Enter several Pursisans of both Houses, who Peer'd 5 forth the golden window of the east,

join the Fray; then enter Citizens, with A troubled mind drave me 10 walk abroad; Clubs.

Where,-underneath the grove of sycamore, 1 Cit. Clubs +, bills, and partisans ! strike! That westward rooteth from the city's side, beat them down!

[tagues ! So early walking did I see your son: Down with the Capulets ! down with the Mon- Towards him I made ; but he was 'ware of me, Enter CAPULET, in his Gown; and Lady And stole into the covert of the wood: CAPULET.

I, ineasuring his affections by my own,Cap. What noise is this !-Give me my long That most are busied when they are most sword, ho!

(for a sword ? Pursued my humour, not pursuing his, (alone, La.Car. A crotch, a crutch! - Why call you And gladly shunn'd who gladly fled from me. Cap. My sword, I say!--Old Montague is Mon. Many a morning hath he there been And flourishes his blade in spite of me. (come, seen,

(dew, Enter MONTAGUE and Ludy MONTAGUE. With tears augmenting the fresh morning's Mon. Thou villain Capulet. -Hold me not, Adding to clouds more clouds with his deep let me go

But all so soon as the all-cheering sun (sighs

• The disregard of concord is in character.
ai ab affray in the streets, as we now call watch!

+ Clubs ! was the usual exclamation

Angry. Ś Appeared.


(be bit

Should in the farthest east begin to draw Griefs of mine own lie heavy in my breast; The shady certains from Aurora's bed, Which thou wilt propagate, to have it prest Away from light steals boine my heavy son, With more of thine : this love, that thou hast And private in his chamber pens himself ;


(own. Shuts ap bis windows, locks fair daylight out, Doth add niore grief to too much of mine And makes himself an artificial night : Love is a smoke raised with the fume of sigbs, Black and portentous must this humour prove, Being purged, a fire sparkling in lovers' eyes; Unless good counsel may the cause remove. Being vex'd, a sea nourish'd with lovers' Ben. My noble uncle, do you know the tears : cause !

(hin. What is it else ? a madness most discreet, Mon. I neither know it, nor can learn of A choking gall, and a preserving swett. Ben. Have you importuned bim by any Farewell, my coz.

(Going means ? (friends : Ben.

Soft, I will go along; Mon. Both by myself and many other Au if you leave me so, you do me wrong. Bnt he, his own affections' counsellor,

Rom. Tut, I have lost myself; I al kot Is to himself, I will not say how trueBut to hinself so secret and so close,

This is not Romeo, he's some other where. So far from sounding and discovery,

Ben. Tell me in sadness, who she is you As is the bud bit with an envious worm,

love. Ere he can spread his sweet leaves to the air, Rom. What, shall I groan, and tell thee! Or dedicate his beauty to the sun. (grow, Ben.

Groan? why, no; Could we but learn from whence bis sorrows But sadly tell me, who.

[will :We would as willingly give cure, as know.

Rom. Bid a sick man in sadness make his Enter ROMEO, at a distance, Ah, word ill arged to one that is so ill !Ben. See, where he comes: So please you, in sadness, consin, I do love a woman. step aside;

Ben. I aim'd so near, wheu I supposed you I'll know his grievance, or be mach deniet.


(fair I love. Mon. I would thou wert so happy by thy Rom. A right good marksman !- And she's stay,

Ben. A right fair mark, fair coz, is soonest To hear true shrist,--Come,madam, let's away, bit.

(Ereunt MONTAGUE and Lady. Rom. Well, in that bit, you miss : sbe'll not Ben, Good morrow, cousin.

With Cupid's arrow, she hath Dian's wit; Rom.

Is the day so young? And, in strong proof of chastity well arm'd, Ben. But new-struck nine.

From love's weak childish bow she lives unRom.

Ab me I sad hours seem long. harm'd. Was that my father that went thence so fast? She will not stay the siege of loving terms, Ben. It was.-What sadness lengthens Ro-Nor bide the encounter of assailing eyes, meo's hours?

[them short. Nor ope her lap to saipt-seducing gold : Rom. Not having that, which having, makes 0, she is rich in beauty; only poor, Ben, In love?

That, when she dies, with beauty dies her store. Rom. Out

Ben. Then she hath sworn, that she will Ben. Of love?

still live chaste? Rom. Out of her favour, where I am in love. Rom. She hath, and in that sparing makes

Ben. Alas, that love, so gentle in his view, huge waste;
Shonld be so tyrannous and rough in proof! For beauty, starved with ber severity,
Rom. Alas, that love, whose view is moffied Cuts beauty off from all posterity.

She is too fair, too wise ; wisely too fair, Should, without eyes, see pathways to his will! To merit bliss by making me despair : Where shall we dine?-0 me:

-What fray She hath forsworn to love; and, or that vow, was here?

Do I live dead, that live to tell it pow. Yet tell me not, for I have heard it all.

Ben. Be roled by me, forget to think of her. Here's much to do with hate, but more with Rom. O, teach me how I should forget to love :

think. Why then, O brawling love! O loving hate! Ben. By giving liberty unto thine e jes; O any thing, of nothing first create !

Examine other beauties. O heavy lightness! serious vanity!

Rom. Mis-shapen chaos of well-seeming forms ! To call her's, exquisite, in question more: Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick These happy masks, that kiss fair ladies' health!

brows, Still-wakiug sleep, that is not what it is ! Being black, pat ns in mind they hide the fair; This love feel I, that feel no love in this. He, that is strucken blind, cannot forget Dost thon not laugh?

The precious treasure of his eyesight lost: Ben.

No, coz, I rather weep. Show me a mistress that is passing fair, Rom. Good heart, at what?

What doth her beauty servet, but as a note Ben. At thy good heart's oppression. Where I may read, who pass'd that passin Rom. Why, such is love's transgression.

fair? • ln seriousness.

1 i.e., What end does it answer

Tis the way


Fare vell; thou canst not teach me to forget. Turn giddy, and be holp by backward turning; Ben. I'll pay that doctrine, or else die in One desperate grief cures with another's debt.

(Ereunt. Janguish:

Take thou some new infection to thy eye, SCENE II. A Street.

And the rank poison of the old will die. Enter CAPULET, PARIS, and Servant. Rom. Your plantain leaf is excellent for Cap. And Montague is bound as well as I, Ben. For what, I pray thee? (that. In penalty alike; and 'tis not hard, I think, Rom.

For your broken shin. For men so old as we to keep the peace. (both; Ben. Why, Romeo, art thou mad?

Par. Of honourable reckoning * are yon Rom. Not mad, but bound more than a And pity 'tis, you lived at odds so long.

madman is : But now, my lord, what say you to my suit? Shut up in prison, kept without my food, Cap. But saying o'er what I have said Whipp'd, and tormented, and-Good e'en, before :

good fellow. My child is yet a stranger in the world, Serv. God gi' good e'en.--I pray, sir, can She hath not seen the change of fourteen you read? years;

Rom. Ay, mine own fortune in my misery. Let two more summers wither in their pride, Serv. Perhaps you have learn’d it without Ere we may think her ripe to be a bride.

book : Par. Younger than she are happy mothers But I pray, can you read any thing you see? inade.

(made. Rom. Ay, if I know the letters, and the Cap. And too soon marrd are those so early language. The earth hath swallow'd all iny hopes but Serv. Ye.say honestly ; Rest you merry! She is the hopeful Lady of my earth: (she, Rom. Stay, fellow; I can read. (Reads. But woo her, gentle Paris, get her heart, Signior Martino, and his wife, and daughMy will to her consent is but a part;

ters; County Anselme, and his beauteous An she agree, within her scope of choice sisters; The lady widow of Virtruvio; Signior Lies my consent and fair according voice. Placentio, and his lovely nieces; Mercntio, This night I hold an old accustom'd feast, and his brother Valentine, Mine uncle CapuWhereto I have invited many a guest, let, his wife, and daughters; My fair niece Such as I love; aud you, among the store, Rosaline; Livia ; Signior Valentio, and his One more, most welcome, makes my number cousin Tybalt; Lucio, and the lively Helena.

A fair assembly ; [Gires back the Note.) At my poor house, look to behold this night

Whether should they come?
Earth-treading stars, that make dark heaven Serv. Up.
light :

Rom. Whither?
Such comfort, as do lusty young men feel Serv. To supper; to our house.
When well-apparell'd April on the heel

Rom. Whose house?
Of limping winter treads, even such (lelight Serv. My master's.

[before. Among fresh female buds slall you this vight Rom Indeed, I should have asked you that Inherit + at my house; hear all, all see,

Serv. Now I'll tell you without asking: And like her most, whose merit most shall be: My master is the great rich Capolet; and if Such, amongst view of many, mine being one, you be not of the house of Montagues, I pray, May stand in puniber, though in reckoning I come and crush a cup of wine g. Rest you


(Exit. Come, go with me;-Go, sirrah, trudge about Ben. At this same ancient feast of Capulet's Through fair Verona ; find those persons ont, Sups the fair Rosaline, whom thou so lovest; Whose names are written there, [Gives a With all the admired beauties of Verona. Paper.) and to them say,

Go thither; and, with unattainted eye, My house and welcome on their pleasure stay. Compare fier face with some that I shall show,

(Exeunt CAPULET and Paris. And I will make thee think thy swan a crow. Serv, Find them out whose names are Rom. When the devout religion of mine written here? It is written--that the shoe


(fires ! maker should meddle with his yard, and the Maintains such falsehood, then, turn tears to tailor with his last, the fisher with his pencil, And these,—who, often drown'd, could never and the painter with his nets; but I am sent

die,to fod those persons, whose names are here Transparent heretics, be burnt for liars ! writ, and can never find what names the One fairer than my love! the all-seeing sun writing person hath here writ. I must to the Ne'er saw her match, since first the world learned :-In good time.


[by, Enter BENVOL10 and ROMEO.

Ben. Tnt? you saw her fair, vone else being Ben. Tut, man! one fire burns out another's Herself poised || with herself in either eye: burning,

But in those crystal scales, let there be weigh'd One pain is lessen'd by another's anguish; Your lady's love against some other maid • Account, estimation.

+ To inherit, in the language of Shakspeare is to possess. * Estimation.

We still say in cant language-to crack a bottle.



« ZurückWeiter »