« ZurückWeiter »
Sir To. Farewell, dear heart, since I must needs be gone.
Mar. Nay, good Sir Toby.
Sir To. Out o’time? sir, ye lie.—Art any more than a steward? Dost thou think, because thou art virtuous, there shall be no more cakes and ale ?
Clo. Yes, by Saint Anne; and ginger shall be hot i’the mouth too.
Sir To. Thou’rt i'the right. --Go, sir, rub your chain 17 with crums:-A stoop of wine, Maria!
Mal. Mistress Mary, if you prized my lady's favour at any thing more than contempt, you would not give means for this uncivil rule 18; she shall know of it, by this hand.
[Exit. Mar. Go shake your ears. . .
Sir. And. 'Twere as good a deed as to drink when a man's a hungry, to challenge him to the field; and then to break promise with him, and make a fool of him.
Sir To. Do't, knight; I'll write thee a challenge; or I'll deliver thy indignation to him by word of mouth.
17 Stewards anciently wore a chain of silver or gold, as a mark of superiority, as did other principal servants. Wolsey's chief cook is described by Cavendish as wearing ‘velvet or sattin with a chain of gold. One of the methods used to clean gilt plate was rubbing it with crums.
18 Behaviour, or conduct. Hence gambols and frolicsome behaviour was called mis-rule.
Mar. Sweet Sir Toby, be patient for to-night; since the youth of the count's was to-day with my lady, she is much out of quiet. For monsieur Malvolio, let me alone with him: if I do not gull him into a nay-word 19, and make him a common recreation, do not think I have wit enough to lie straight in my bed: I know, I can do it.
Sir To. Possess us 20, possess us; tell us something of him.
Mar. Marry, sir, sometimes he is a kind of Puritan.
Sir And. O, if I thought that, I'd beat him like a dog.
Sir To. What, for being a Puritan? thy exquisite reason, dear knight?
Sir And. I have no exquisite reason for't, but I have reason good enough.
Mar. The devil a Puritan that he is, or any thing constantly but a time pleaser; an affectioned 21 ass, that cons state without book, and utters it by great swarths 22 : the best persuaded of himself, so crammed, as he thinks, with excellencies, that it is his ground of faith, that all, that look on him, love him; and on that vice in him will my revenge find notable cause to work.
Sir To. What wilt thou do?
Mar. I will drop in his way some obscure epistles of love; wherein, by the colour of his beard, the shape of his leg, the manner of his gait, the expressure of his eye, forehead, and complexion, he shall find himself most feelingly personated : I can write very like my lady, your niece; on a forgotten matter we can hardly make distinction of our hands.
19 By-word. 20 Inform us. 21 Affected.
22 i. e. by great parcels or heaps. Swarths are the rows of grass left by the scythe of the mower.
•F F 2
Sir To. Excellent! I smell a device.
Sir To. He shall think, by the letters that thou wilt drop, that they come from my niece, and that she is in love with him.
Mar. My purpose is, indeed, a horse of that colour.
Sir And. And your horse now would make him an ass.
Mar. Ass, I doubt not. Sir And. 0, 'twill be admirable. . Mar. Sport royal, I warrant you: I know, my. physick will work with him. I will plant you two, and let the fool make a third, where he shall find the letter; observe his construction of it. For this night, to bed, and dream on the event. Farewell.
[Exit. Sir To. Good night, Penthesilea 23. Sir And. Before me, she's a good wench.,
Sir To. She's a beagle, true bred, and one that adores me; What o' that?
Sir And. I was adored once too.
Sir To. Let's to bed, knight.—Thou hadst need send for more money. .
Sir And. If I cannot recover your niece, I am a foul way out.
Sir To. Send for money, knight; if thou hast her not i’ the end, call me Cut24.
Sir And. If I do not, never trust me, take it how you will.
Sir To. Come, come; I'll go burn some sack, 'tis too late to go to bed now: come, knight; come, knight.
[Exeunt. 23 Amazon.
24 This term of contempt probably signified call me gelding or horse. Falstaff, in Henry IV. Part I, says— Spit in my face, call me horse. It is of common occurrence in old plays. Cut was a common contraction of curtail. One of the carriers' borses in the first part of Henry IV. is called Cut.
SCENE IV. A R om in the Duke's Palace.
Enter DUKE, VIOLA, Curio, and others.
row, friends :-
Cur. He is not here, so please your lordship, that should sing it.
Duke. Who was it?
Cur. Feste, the jester, my lord: a fool, that the lady Olivia's father took much delight in: he is about the house. Duke. Seek him out, and play the tune the while.
[Exit Curio.—Musick. Come hither, boy; if ever thou shalt love, In the sweet pangs of it, remember me: For, such as I am, all true lovers are; Unstaid and skittish in all motions else, Save, in the constant image of the creature That is belov’d.—How dost thou like this tune?
Vio. It gives a very echo to the seat
Duke. Thou dost speak masterly: .
A little, by your favour 3. · Recalled, repeated terms, alluding to the repetitions in songs. 2 i. e. to the heart.
3 The word favour is ambiguously used. In the preceding speech it signified countenance.
Duke. What kind of woman is't?
Of your complexion. Duke. She is not worth thee then. What years,
i'faith? Vio. About your years, my lord. Duke. Too old, by heaven; Let still the woman
I think it well, my lord,
Vio. And so they are: alas, that they are so; To die, even when they to perfection grow!
Re-enter Curio and Clown. Duke. O fellow,come, the song we had last night:Mark it, Cesario; it is old, and plain : The spinsters and the knitters in the sun, And the free 5 maids that weave their thread with
4 i.e. consumed, worn out.
5 i. e, chaste maids, employed in making lace. This passage has sadly puzzled the commentators; their conjectures are some of them highly amusing. Johnson says “free is perhaps vacant, unengaged, easy in mind.' Steevens once thought it meant unmarried; then that it might mean cheerful: and at last concludes that its precise meaning cannot easily be pointed out. Warton mentions, in his notes on L’Allegro of Milton, that it was a common attribute of woman, coupled mostly with fair, but he did not venture upon an explanation. The following extracts will show that