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On him, her brothers, me, her master; hitting
Each object with a joy; the counterchange
Is severally in all. Let's quit this ground,
And smoke the temple with our sacrifices.-
Thou art my brother; So we'll hold thee ever.
Imo. You are my father too; and did relieve me,
To see this gracious season.


All o'erjoy'd

Save these in bonds; let them be joyful too,
For they shall taste our comfort.

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My good master,

Happy be you!

Cym. The forlorn soldier, that so nobly fought, He would have well becom❜d this place, and grac'd The thankings of a king.


I am, sir,

The soldier that did company these three

In poor beseeming; 'twas a fitment for

The purpose I then follow'd;-That I was he,
Speak, Iachimo; I had you down, and might
Have made you finish.


I am down again: [Kneeling. But now my heavy conscience sinks my knee, As then your force did. Take that life, 'beseech you, Which I so often owe: but, your ring first; And here the bracelet of the truest princess, That ever swore her faith.


Kneel not to me;

The power that I have on you, is to spare you;
The malice towards you, to forgive you: Live,
And deal with others better.


We'll learn our freeness of a son-in-law;

Pardon's the word to all.


Nobly doom'd:

You holp us, sir,

As you did mean indeed to be our brother;
Joy'd are we, that you are.

Post. Your servant, princes.-Good my lord of Rome,

Call forth your soothsayer: As I slept, methought,
Great Jupiter, upon his eagle back,

Appear'd to me, with other spritely shows 28
Of mine own kindred: when I wak'd, I found
This label on my bosom; whose containing
Is so from sense in hardness, that I can
Make no collection 29 of it; let him show
His skill in the construction.


Sooth. Here, my good lord.



Read, and declare the meaning. Sooth. [Reads.] When as a lion's whelp shall, to himself unknown, without seeking find, and be embraced by a piece of tender air; and when from a stately cedar shall be lopped branches, which, being dead many years shall after revive, be jointed to the old stock, and freshly grow; then shall Posthumus end his miseries, Britain be fortunate, and flourish in peace and plenty.

Thou, Leonatus, art the lion's whelp;

The fit and apt construction of thy name,
Being Leo-natus, doth import so much:

28 Spritely shows are groups of sprites, ghostly appearances. 29 A collection is a corollary, a consequence deduced from premises. So in Davies's poem on The Immortality of the Soul:

When she from sundry arts one skill doth draw;
Gath'ring from divers sights one act of war;

From many cases like one rule of law:

These her collections, not the senses are.'

So the Queen in Hamlet says:

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Her speech is nothing,

Yet the unshaped use of it doth move
The hearers to collection.'

Whose containing means the contents of which.


The piece of tender air, thy virtuous daughter,
Which we call mollis aer; and mollis aer
We term it mulier: which mulier I divine,
Is this most constant wife: who, even now,
Answering the letter of the oracle,

Unknown to you, unsought, were clipp❜d about
With this most tender air.


This hath some seeming.

Sooth. The lofty cedar, royal Cymbeline, Personates thee: and thy lopp'd branches point Thy two sons forth: who, by Belarius stolen, For many years thought dead, are now reviv'd, To the majestic cedar join'd; whose issue Promises Britain peace and plenty.

Cym. Well, My peace we will begin 30:-And, Caius Lucius, Although the victor, we submit to Cæsar, And to the Roman empire; promising To pay our wonted tribute, from the which We were dissuaded by our wicked queen; Whom heavens, in justice (both on her and hers), Have laid most heavy hand 31.

Sooth. The fingers of the powers above do tune The harmony of this peace. The vision Which I made known to Lucius, ere the stroke Of this yet scarce-cold battle, at this instant

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30 It should apparently be, By peace we will begin.' The Soothsayer says, that the label promised to Britain peace and plenty.' To which Cymbeline replies, We will begin with peace, to fulfil the prophecy.'

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31 i. e. have laid most heavy hand on. Many such elliptical passages are found in Shakspeare. Thus in The Rape of Lu


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Only he hath an eye to gaze on beauty,

And dotes on whom he looks [on] gainst law and duty.'

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Is full accomplish'd: For the Roman eagle,
From south to west on wing soaring aloft,
Lessen'd herself, and in the beams o'the sun
So vanish'd: which foreshow'd our princely eagle,
The imperial Cæsar, should again unite
His favour with the radiant Cymbeline,
Which shines here in the west.


Laud we the gods;

And let our crooked smokes climb to their nostrils
From our bless'd altars! Publish we this peace
To all our subjects. Set we forward: Let
A Roman and a British ensign wave

Friendly together: so through Lud's town march :
And in the temple of great Jupiter

Our peace we'll ratify; seal it with feasts.-
Set on there :-Never was a war did cease,
Ere bloody hands were wash'd, with such a peace.

THIS play has many just sentiments, some natural dialogues, and some pleasing scenes, but they are obtained at the expense of much incongruity. To remark the folly of the fiction, the absurdity of the conduct, the confusion of the names and manners of different times, and the impossibility of the events in any system of life, were to waste criticism upon unresisting imbecility, upon faults too evident for detection, and too gross for aggravation*. JOHNSON.

* Johnson's remark on the gross incongruity of names and manners in this play is just, but it was the common error of the age; in The Wife for a Month, of Beaumont and Fletcher, we have Frederick and Alphonso among a host of Greek names, not to mention the firing of a pistol by Demetrius Poliocortes in The Humorous Lieutenant. PYE.

It is hardly necessary to point out the extreme injustice of the unfounded severity of Johnson's animadversions upon this exquisite drama. The antidote will be found in the reader's appeal to his own feelings after reiterated perusal. It is with satisfaction I refer to the more just and discriminative opinion of a foreign critic, to whom every lover of Shakspeare is deeply indebted, cited in the preliminary remarks. S. W. S.





To fair Fidele's grassy tomb,

Soft maids and village hinds shall bring
Each opening sweet, of earliest bloom,
And rifle all the breathing spring.

No wailing ghost shall dare appear
To vex with shrieks this quiet grove;
But shepherd lads assemble here,

And melting virgins own their love.

No wither'd witch shall here be seen,
No goblins lead their nightly crew :
The female fays shall haunt the green,
And dress thy grave with pearly dew.
The redbreast oft at evening hours
Shall kindly lend his little aid,
With hoary moss, and gather'd flowers,
To deck the ground where thou art laid.

When howling winds, and beating rain,
In tempests shake the sylvan cell;
Or midst the chase on every plain,

The tender thought on thee shall dwell.

Each lonely scene shall thee restore;
For thee the tear be duly shed;
Belov'd till life could charm no more;
And mourn'd till pity's self be dead.

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