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nearly the whole of the third, fourth, and fifth acts bearing indisputable testimony to the genius and execution of the great master*."

The most corrupt of Shakspeare's other dramas, compared with Pericles, is purity itself. The metre is seldom attended to; verse is frequently printed as prose, and the grossest errors abound in every page. I mention these circumstances only as an apology to the reader for having taken somewhat more licence with this drama than would have been justifiable if the old copies had been less disfigured by the negligence and ignorance of the printer or transcriber.'-MALONE.

* Shakspeare and his Times, by Dr. Drake, vol. ii. p. 262 and seq.


ANTIOCHUS, King of Antioch.
PERICLES, Prince of Tyre.

HELICANUS, two Lords of Tyre.

SIMONIDES, King of Pentapolis *.
CLEON, Governor of Tharsus.
LYSIMACHUS, Governor of Mitylene.
CERIMON, a Lord of Ephesus.
THALIARD, a Lord of Antioch.
PHILEMON, Servant to Cerimon.
LEONINE, Servant to Dionyza.


A Pandar, and his Wife. BoULT, their Servant.
GOWER, as Chorus.

The Daughter of Antiochus. DIONYZA, Wife to Cleon.
THAISA, Daughter to Simonides.

MARINA, Daughter to Pericles and Thaisa.

LYCHORIDA, Nurse to Marina. DIANA.

Lords, Ladies, Knights, Gentlemen, Sailors, Pirates, Fishermen, and Messengers, &c.

SCENE, dispersedly in various Countriest.

* We meet with Pentapolitana regio, a country in Africa, consisting of five cities. Pentapolis occurs in the thirty-seventh chapter of King Appolyn of Tyre, 1510; in Gower; the Gesta Romanorum; and Twine's translation from it. Its site is marked in an ancient map of the world, MS. in the Cotton Library, Brit. Mus. Tiberius, b. v. In the original Latin romance of Apollonius Tyrius it is most accurately called Pentapolis Cyrenorum, and was, as both Strabo and Ptolemy inform us, a district of Cyrenaica in Africa, comprising five cities, of which Cyrene was


That the reader may know through how many regions the scene of this drama is dispersed, it is necessary to observe that Antioch was the metropolis of Syria; Tyre a city of Phoenicia in Asia; Tharsus, the metropolis of Cilicia, a country of Asia Minor; Mitylene, the capital of Lesbos, an island in the Ægean sea; and Ephesus, the capital of Ionia, a country of the Lesser Asia.




Enter GOWER1.

Before the Palace of Antioch.

To sing a song that old was sung,
From ashes ancient Gower is come 3;
Assuming man's infirmities,

To glad your ear, and please your eyes.
It hath been sung at festivals,

On ember-eves, and holy ales *;

And lords and ladies in their lives
Have read it for restoratives:


The purchase is to make men glorious;

Et bonum quo antiquius, eo melius.

1 Chorus, in the character of Gower, an ancient English poet, who has related the story of this play in his Confessio Amantis. 2 i. e. that of old.

3 The defect of metre (sung and come being no rhymes) points out that we should read

'From ancient ashes Gower sprung;' alluding to the restoration of the Phoenix.


4 That is, says Dr. Farmer, by whom this emendation was made, church-ales. The old copy has holy days.' Gower's speeches were certainly intended to rhyme throughout.

5 'The purchase' is the reading of the old copy; which Steevens, among other capricious alterations, changed to purpose. That Steevens and Malone were ignorant of the true meaning of

If you, born in these latter times,
When wit's more ripe, accept my rhymes,
And that to hear an old man sing,
May to your wishes pleasure bring,
I life would wish, and that I might
Waste it for you, like taper-light.-
This Antioch then, Antiochus the Great
Built up this city for his chiefest seat;
The fairest in all Syria;

(I tell you what mine authors say):
This king unto him took a pheere",
Who died and left a female heir,
So buxom, blithe, and full of face7,
As heaven had lent her all his grace;
With whom the father liking took,
And her to incest did provoke:

Bad child, worse father! to entice his own
To evil, should be done by none.

By custom, what they did begin,


Was, with long use, account no sin.

the word purchase I have shown in vol. v. p. 153, note 21. It was anciently used to signify gain, profit; any good or advantage obtained; as in the following instances:-James the First, when he made the extravagant gift of 30,000l. to Rich, said, 'You think now that you have a great purchase; but I am far happier in giving you that sum than you can be in receiving it.'

No purchase passes a good wife, no losse

Is, than a bad wife, a more cursed crosse.'

Chapman's Georgics of Hesiod, b. ii. 44, p. 32.
Long would it be ere thou hast purchase bought,
Or welthier wexen by such idle thought.'

Hall, satire ii. b. 2.

Some fall in love with accesse to princes, others with popular fame and applause, supposinge they are things of greate purchase, when in many cases they are but matters of envy, perill, and impediment.'-Bacon Adv. of Learning.

6 Wife: the word signifies a mate or companion.

7 i. e. completely exuberantly beautiful. A full fortune, in Othello, means a complete one.

8 Account for accounted.

The beauty of this sinful dame
Made many princes thither frame 9,
To seek her as a bed-fellow,

In marriage-pleasures playfellow :
Which to prevent, he made a law
(To keep her still, and men in awe 10),
That whoso ask'd her for his wife,
His riddle told not, lost his life:
So for her many a wight did die,
As yon grim looks do testify 11.

What now ensues, to the judgment of your eye I give, my cause who best can justify 12. [Exit.


Antioch. A Room in the Palace.

Enter ANTIOCHUS, PERICLES, and Attendants. Ant. Young prince of Tyre1, you have at large receiv'd

The danger of the task you undertake.

Per. I have, Antiochus, and with a soul Embolden'd with the glory of her praise, Think death no hazard, in this enterprise. [Musick.

9 i. e. shape or direct their course thither.

10 To keep her still to himself, and to deter others from demanding her in marriage.'

11 Gower must be supposed to point to the scene of the palace gate at Antioch, on which the heads of those unfortunate wights were fixed.

12 Which (the judgment of your eye) best can justify, i. e. prove its resemblance to the ordinary course of nature. Thus afterward::

'When thou shall kneel and justify in knowledge.'

1 It does not appear in the present drama that the father of Pericles is living. By prince, therefore, throughout this play, we are to understand prince regnant. In the Gesta Romanorum Appolonius is king of Tyre; and Appolyn in Copland's transla-、 tion from the French. In Twine's translation he is repeatedly called prince of Tyrus, as he is in Gower.

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