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Do use to chaunt it; it is silly sooth®,
in oar older language free was often used for chaste, pure. Thus
This song, I have heard say
In honour of that blisful maiden fre.'. Mr. Tyrwhitt notices one of these instances in his Glossary, and, strange to say, explains it liberal, bountiful,
In the Speculum Vitae of Richard Rolle, MS. I find it thus again applied to the Virgin Mary :
• For our Lorde wolde boren be Of a weddid woman that was fre,
That was blessid Marye mayde clene.' The force of the word will be best understood by the following examples of its use from the same poem :
· Wherfor God sais in the Gospelle-
Withoute doute ye sal haue.'
"When he praied to God with hert frei! Its occurrence in Spenser and our old Metrical Romances is so frequent, coupled with fair, that I am surprised it had not struck some of the commentators that beauty and chastity were the highest gifts with which the sex could be endowed; but Drayton uses it in his fourth Eclogue :
A daughter cleped Dowsabel, a maiden fair and free.' And Ben Jonson makes part of the praise he lavishes on Lucy Countess of Bedford :
I meant to make her fair, and free (i.e. chaste), and wise,
Of greatest blood, and yet more good than great.' Mr. Todd was acquainted with this and other instances, and has yet erroneously interpreted the word ' accomplished, genteel, charming !'
6 Silly sooth, or rather sely sooth, is simple truth. 7 The old age is the ages past, times of simplicity.
Clo. Are you ready, sir?
[Musick. SONG. Clo. Come away, come away, death,
And in sad cypress8 let me be laid;
Fly away, fly away, breath;
O, prepare it ;
Did share it.
Not a friend, not a friend greet
Lay me, 0, where
To weep there.
Clo. Truly, sir, and pleasure will be paid one time or another.
Duke. Give me now leave to leave thee. 8 It is not clear whether a shroud of the stuff now called crape, anciently called cypress, is here meant, or whether a coffin of cypress wood was intended. The cypress was used for funeral purposes; and the epithet sad is inconsistent with a white shroud. It is even possible that branches of cypress only may be meant. We see the shroud was stuck all with yew, and cypress may have been used in the same manner. In Quarles's Argalus and Parthenia, a knight is introduced, whose
- horse was black as jet,
Clo. Now, the melancholy god protect thee; and the tailor make thy doublet of changeable taffata, for thy mind is a very opal 9- I would have men of such constancy put to sea, that their business might be every thing, and their intent every where; for that's it, that always makes a good voyage of nothing. — Farewell.
[Exit Clown. Duke. Let all the rest give place. —
[Exeunt Curio and Attendants.
Once more, Cesario,
Vio. But, if she cannot love you, sir?
Sooth, but you must.
Duke. There is no woman's sides Can bide the beating of so strong a passion As love doth give my heart: no woman's heart. So big, to hold so much; they lack retention. Alas, their love may be calld appetite,No motion of the liver, but the palate,That suffer surfeit, cloyment, and revolt; But mine is all as hungry as the sea, And can digest as much: make no compare
9 The opal is a gem which varies its hues, as it is viewed in different lights.
10 That beauty which nature decks her in.
Between that love a woman can bear me,
Ay, but I know, -
Vio. Too well what love women to men may owe:
And what's her history? Vio. A blank, my lord: She never told her love, But let concealment, like a worm i’ the bud 11, Feed on her damask cheek: she pin’d in thought; And, with a green and yellow melancholy, She sat like patience on a monument, Smiling at grief 12. Was not this love, indeed? 11 So in the fifth Sonnet of Shakspeare :
• Which like a canker in the fragrant rose
Doth spot the beauty of thy budding name.' And in the Rape of Lucrece :
· Why should the worm intrude the maiden bud.' Again in Richard II.
“But now will canker sorrow eat my buds,
And chase the native beauty from my cheek.' 12 So Middleton in The Witch, Act iv. Sc. 3:
She does not love me now, but painfully
Like one that's forc'd to smile upon a grief.' The commentators have overlaid this exquisite passage with notes, and created difficulties where none existed. Mr. Boswell says, the meaning is obviously this:- While she was smiling at grief, or in her grief, her placid resignation made her look like patience on a monument.' A passage in the most pathetic poet of antiquity which exhibits a similar description of a silent and hopeless passion, has been pointed out by Mr. Taylor Combe, of the British Museum :
Ενταύθα δη στένουσα κάκπεπληγμένε
Euripides Hippol, v. 38.
We men may say more, swear more: but, indeed, Our shows are more than will; for still we prove Much in our vows, but little in our love.
Duke. But died thy sister of her love, my boy?
Vio. I am all the daughters of my father's house,
Ay, that's the theme.
SCENE V. Olivia's Garden.
CHEEK, and FABIAN.
Fab. Nay, I'll come; if I lose a scruple of this sport, let me be boiled to death with melancholy.
· Sir To. Would'st thou not be glad to have the niggardly rascally sheep-biter come by some notable shame?
Fab. I would exult, man: you know, he brought me out of favour with my lady, about a bear-baiting here.
Sir To. To anger him, we'll have the bear again; and we will fool him black and blue:-Shall we not, Sir Andrew ? Sir And. An we do not, it is pity of our lives.
Enter MARIA. Sir To. Here comes the little villain :-How now, my nettle of India??
1 The first folio reads mettle of India.' By the nettle of India is meant a zoophite, called Urtica Marina, abounding in the InVOL. I.