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All's Well, that Ends Well.
ACTI. SCENE I.
The Countess of Rousillon's House in France.
Enter Bertram, the Countess of Rousillon, Helena,
and Lafeu, all in black.
N delivering my son from me, I bury a second husband,
Ber. And I in going, Madam, weep o'er my father's death anew; but I must attend his Majesty's command, to whom) am now * in ward, evermore in subjection.
· In DELIVERING my son from the great commentator would
--) To deliver from, in fubftitute; for the King disevers the sense of giving up, is not her son from her, Me only deliEnglish. Shakespear wrote, in DISSEVERING my fon from mem 2 In ward.] Under his par. The following Words, too, ticular care, as my guardian ’ull I bury a second bufand de I come to age. It is now almost mand this reading for to dif- forgotten in England that the lever implies a violent divorce; heirs of great fortunes were the and therefore might be compa- king's wards. Whether the same red to the burying a husband; pračtice prevailed in France, it which delivering does not. WARB. is of no great use to enquire, for
of this change I see no need : Shakespeare gives to all nations the present reading is clear, and, the manners of England. perhaps, as proper as that which
Laf. You shall find of the King a husband, Madam ; you, Sir, a father. He, that so generally is at all times good, must of necessity hold his virtue to you ; ' whose worthiness would stir it up where it wanted, rather than sack it where there is such abundance.
Count. What hope is there of his Majesty's amend. ment?
Laf. He hath abandon'd his physicians, Madam, under- whose practices he hath persecuted time with hope ; and finds no other advantage in the process, but only the losing of hope by time.
Count. *This young gentlewoman had a father, (O, that bad! how fad a paffage 'tis !) whose skill was almost as great as his honesty; had it stretch'd so far, it would have made nature immortal, and death should have play'd for lack of work. 'Would, for
3 while worthiness would Air makes a reflection upon it, which, it up where it wanted, rather, according to the present reading, than lack it where there is such is unintelligible. We mult thereabundance.) An Opposition of fore believe Shakespear wrote ( Terms is visibly designd in this that had! how fad a PRESAGE fentence; tho? che Opposition is 'tis) i.6. a Presage that the King not so visible, as the Terms now, must now, expect no cure, fince stand. Wanted and Abundan’e fo kilful a Person was himself are the Opposites to one ano- forced to submit to a malignant ther; but how is lack a Contrast distemper. WARBURTON. to fir up? The Addition of a This emendation is ingenious, fingle Letter gives it, and the perhaps preferable to the present very Sense requires it. Read reading, yet fince paljage may flack it, WARBURTON. be fairly enough explained, I
4 This young gentle woman had have left it in the text. Paljage a father (0, that had! how Jad is any thing that passes, fo we now a Passage 'ris! ) Lafu was fay, a palage of an autbour, speaking of the King's despe- and we said about a century ago, rate Condition : which makes the paljages of a reign. When the Countess recall to mind the the Countess mentions Helena's deceased Gerard de Narbor, who, loss of a father, the recollects she thinks, could have cured him. her own loss of a husband, and But in using the word had, which stops to observe how heavily that implied his death, she flops in word kad pallies through her the middle of her sentence, and mind.
the King's fake, he were living! I think, it would b the death of the King's disease.
Laf. How call'd you the man you speak of, Madam?
Count. He was famous, Sir, in his profession, and it was his great right to be fo: Gerard de Narbon.
Laf. He was excellent, indeed, Madam; the King very lately spoke of him admiringly, and mourningly: he was skilful enough to have liv'd still, if knowledge could have been set up against mortality.
Ber. What is it, my good lord, the King languilhes of?
Laf. A fistula, my lord.
Laf. I would, it were not notorious. Was this gentlewoman the daughter of Gerard de Narbon ?
Count. His sole child, my lord, and bequeathed to my overlooking. I have those hopes of her good, that her education promises her ; disposition she inherits, which makes fair gifts fairer ; for s where an un
s where an unclean mind car- mind to go further in wickedness ries virtuous qualities, there, com- than it could have done without mendations go with pity; they are them: But, says the Countess, Virtues and Traitors too : in her in her they are the better for THEIR they are the better for their fim- fimpleness. But fimpleness is the pleness; fhe derives her honesty, same with what is called honesty, and atchieves her goodness.) This immediately after; which canobscure encomium is made still not be predicated of the qualimore obscure by a slight corrup. ties of education. We must certion of the text. Let us explain tainly read the passage as it lies. By virtu
HER fimpleness, ous qualities are meant qualities And then the sentence is properof good breeding and erudition; ly concluded. The Countess in the same sense that the lialians had said, that virtuous qualities say, qualità virtuosa; and not are the worse for an unclean mind, moral ones. On this account it but concludes that Helen's are the is, she says, that, in an ill mind, better for ber fimpleness. i. e. her these virtuous qualities are virtues clean, pure mind. She then and traitors 106: i.e. the advan sums up the Character, she had tages of education enable an ill before given in detail, in these
clean mind carries virtuous qualities, there commendations
with pity, they are virtues and traitors too; 8 in her they are the better for their fimpleness; the derives her honesty, and atchieves her goodness.
Laf. Your commendations, Madam, get from her tears.
Count, 'Tis the best brine a maiden can season her praise in. The remembrance of her father never approaches her heart, but the tyranny of her forrows takes all livelihood from her cheek. No more of this, Helena, go to, no more; left it be rather thought you affect a forrow, than to have it.
Hel. I do affect a sorrow, indeed, but I have it too.
Laf. Moderate lamentation is the right of the dead, exceslive grief the enemy to the living.
Count. If the living be enemy to the grief, the excess makes it soon mortal.
words, she derives her honesty, tors too. Eftimable and useful and archieves her goodness, i.e. qualities, joined with evil difShe derives her honefly, her km- position, give that evil disposipleness, her moral Character, from tion power over others, who, by her Father and Ancestors : But admiring the virtue, are betrayThe atchieves or wins her good- ed to the malevolence. The ness, her virtue, or her qualities Tatler, mentioning the sharpers of good breeding and erudition, of his time, observes, that some by her own pains and labour. of them are men of such ele
WARBURTON. gance and knowledge, that a This is likewise a plausible young man who falls into their way but unnecessary alteration. Her is betrayed as much by his judg. virtues are the better
for their fim- ment as his pasions. pleness, that is, her excellencies are • If the living be enemy to the the better because they are artless grief, the excess makes it soor morand open, without fraud, with tal.] This seems very obscure ; out design. The learned com- but the addition of a Negative mentator has well explained vir- perfectly dispels all the milt
. If tues, but has not, I think, reach- the living be not enemy, &c. exed the force of the word traitors, ceflive grief is an enemy to the and therefore has not shewn the living, says Lafeu : Yes, replies full extent of Shakespeare's maf- the Countess; and if the living terly observation. Virtues in an be not enemy to the grief, [i. a. triclean mind are virtues and trai- strive to conquer it,] the excess
Ber. Madam, I desire your holy wishes.
Laf. He cannot want the best,
[Exit Countess. Ber. (To Helena.] The best wishes, that can be forg'd in your thoughts, be fervants to you ! Be comfortable to my mother, your mistress, and make much of her.
Laf. Farewel, pretty Lady, you must hold the credit of your father. [Exeunt Bertram and Lafeu.
makes it foon mortal.
I understand that which dies, and WARBURTON. Dr. Warburton, that which dem This emendation I had once ftroys. I think that my interadmitted into the text, but re- pretation gives a sentence more admitted the old reading, because acute and more refined. Let the I think it capable of an easy reader judge. explication. Lofeu fays, excej: 7 That thee may furnish ] That five grif is the eneny of the live may help thee with more and ing : the Countess replies, If the better qualifications. liqning be an enemy 10 grief, the 8 The best wishes, &c.] That excess foon makes it mortal : that is, may you be mistress of your is, if the living do not indulge wilhes, and have power to bring grief, grief desiroys itself by its them to effect. own excess. By the word mersal