Abbildungen der Seite

we are praying, the thing for which we pray is losing its value.

JOHNSON. Line 28. thy wan'd lip!] Perhaps, for fond lip, or warm lip, says Dr. Johnson. Wan'd, if it stand, is either a corruption of wan, the adjective, or a contraction of wanned, or made wan, a participle.

STEEVENS, Line 55. -square-] That is, quarrel. STEEVENS,

E.reunt.] This play is not divided into Acts by the author or first editors, and therefore the present division may be altered at pleasure. I think the first Act may be commodiously continued to this place, and the second Act opened with the interview of the chief persons, and a change of the state of action, Yet it must be confessed, that it is of small importance where these unconnected and desultory scenes are interrupted.



Line 72. Were I the wearer of Antonius' beard,

I would not share to-day.] I believe he means, I would meet him undressed, without show of respect. JOHNSON.

Line 96. Nor curstness grow to the matter.] Let not illhumour be added to the real subject of our difference.

JOHNSON Line 128.

-my brother never

Did urge me in his act ;] i. e. Never did make use of my name as a pretence for the war.

WARBURTON. Line 131. -true reports,] Reports for reporters. Steev.

148. -fronted-] i. e. Opposed. JOHNSON.

168. I told him of myself ;] i. e. told him the condition I was in; when he had his last audience. WARBURTON.

Line 178. The honour's sacred-] Sacred, for unbroken, unviolated.

WARBURTON. Dr. Warburton seems to understand this passage thus; The honour which he talks of me as lacking, is unviolated. I never lacked it. This, perhaps, may be the true meaning ; but, before I read the note, I understood it thus : Lepidus interrupts Cæsar, on the supposition that what he is about to say will be too harsh YOL, X.


to be endured by Antony; to which Antony replies—No, Lepidus, let him speak; the security of honour on which he now speaks, CA which this conference is held now, is sacred, even supposing that I lacked honour before.

JOHNSON. Line 209. —your considerate stone.] I believe, Go to then; your considerate stone, means only this :- If I must be chidden, henceforward I will be mute as a marble statue, which seems to think, though it can say nothing.

STEETENS. Line 210. I do not much dislike the matter, but

The manner of his speech:] I do not, says Cæsar, think the man wrong, but too free of his interposition ; for it cannot be, we shall remain in friendship: yet if it were possible, I would endeavour it.

JOHNSON. Line 266. Lest my remembrance suffer ill report ;] Lest I be thought too willing to forget benefits, I must barely return him thanks, and then I will defy him.

JOANSON. Line 318. O'er-picturing that Venus, where we see, &c.] Meaning the Venus of Protogenes, mentioned by Pliny, L. XXXV.

WARBURTON. Line 326. -tended her i' the eyes,] Perhaps tended her by th' cyes, discovered her will by her eyes.

Johnson. Line 335.

-which, but for vacancy,

Had gone-] Alluding to an axiom in the peripatetic philosophy then in vogue, that Nature abhors a vacuum,

WARBURTON, But for vacancy, means, for fear of a tacuum. MALONE,

C. X.

ACT II. SCENE III, Line 390. I see 't in

My motion, have it not in my tongue:] i. e. the divinitory agitation.

WARBURTON. Line 400. Becomes a Fear,] A Fear was a personage of some of the old moralities.

STEEVENS. Line 418. his quails—] The ancients used to match quails as we match cocks.

JOHNson. Line 419. inhoop'd, et odds.) Inhoop'd is inclosed, corfined, that they may fight.


ACT II. SCENE V. Line 439. - musick, mioody food-] The mood is the mind, or mental disposition. Van Haaren's panegyrick on the English begins, Grootmoedig Volk, [great-minded nation.] Perhaps here is a poor jest intended between mood the mind and moods of musick.

JOHNSON. Line 443. -let us to billiards :) This is one of the numerous anachronisms that are found in these plays. This game was not known in ancient times.

MALONE. Line 467. -whilst

I woje his sword Philippan.) We are not to suppose, nor is there any warrant from history, that Antony had any particular sword so called. The dignifying weapons, in this sort, is a custom of much more recent date. This therefore seems a compliment à posteriori.

THEOBALD. Line 469. Ram thou thy fruitful tidings—] Shakspeare probably wrote, (as Sir T. Hanmer observes,) Rain thou &c. Rain agrees better with the epithets fruitful and burren. Steevens.

Line 491. Not like a formal man.] Decent, regular. JOHNS.

By a formal man, Shakspeare means, a man in his senses. Informal women, in Measure for Measure, is used for women beside themselves.

STEEVENS, Line 497.

I'll set thee in a shower of gold, and hail

Rich pearls upon thee.] That is, I will give thee a kingdom : it being the eastern ceremony, at the coronation of their kings, to powder them with gold-dust and seed-pearl. So, Milton:

-the gorgeous east with liberal hand
“ Showers on her kings barbaric pearl and gold."

WARBURTON. Line 549. These hands do lack nobility, that they strike

A meaner than myself ;] This thought seems to be borrowed from the laws of chivalry, which forbad a knight to engage with his inferior.

STEEVENS. Line 594. Let him for ever go :) She is now talking in broken sentences, not of the Messenger, but Antony. JOHNSON.

ACT II. SCENE VI, Line 626. Thou canst not fear us,] Thou canst not affright us with thy numerous navy.

JOHNSOS. Line 630. At land, indeed,

Thou dost o'er-count me of my father's house :) At land indeed thou dost exceed me in possessions, having added to thy own my father's house.

MALONE. Line 632. But, since the cuckow builds not for himself, &c.] Since, like the cuckoo, that seizes the nests of other birds, you have invaded a house which you could not build, keep it while you can.

JOHNSON, Line 669. What counts harsh fortune casts &c.] Metaphor from making marks or lines in casting accounts in arithmetick.

WARBURTON. Line 718. I will praise any man that will praise me :) The poet's art in delivering this humorous sentiment (which gives so very true and natural a picture of the commerce of the world) can never be sufficiently admired. The confession could come from none but a frank and rough character, like the speaker's : and the moral lesson insinuated under it, that flattery can make its way through the inost stubborn manners, deserves our serious reflection.



Line 772. with a Banquet.] A banquet, in our au. thor's time, frequently signified what we now call a deser

MALONE Line 773.

-Some of their plants-] Plants, besides its common meaning, is here used for the foot, from the Latin.

Johnson Line 777. They have made him drink alms-drink.] A phrase amongst good fellows, to signify that liquor of another's share which his companion drinks to ease him. But it satirically alludes to Cæsar and Antony's admitting him into the triumvirate, in order to take off from themselves the load of envy.


Line 778. As they pinch one another by the disposition,] A phrase equivalent to that now in use, of Touching one in a sore place.

WARBURTON. Line 785. -a partizan-] A pike.

JOHNSON. 787. To be called into a huge sphere, and not to be seen to more in't, are the holes where eyes should be, which pitifully disaster the cheeks.] This speech seems to be mutilated; to supply the deficiencies is impossible, but perhaps the sense was originally approaching to this:

To be called into a huge sphere, and not to be seen to move in it, is a very ignominious state; great offices are the holes where eyes should be, which, if eyes be wanting, pitifully disaster the cheeks.

Johnson. Line 810. I have heard the Ptolemies' pyramises are rery goodly things ;] Pyramis for pyramid was in common use in our author's time.

MALONE. Line 873. —thy pall'd fortunes-] Palled is rapid, past its time of excellence; palled wine, is wine that has lost its original sprightliness.

JOHNSON. Line 888. That it might go on wheels !] The World goes upon -Wheels, is the title of a pamphlet written by Taylor the waterpoet.

MALONE. Line 892.

-Strike the vessels,] Try whether the casks sound as empty.



Line 1. -struck ;] alludes to darting. Thou whose darts have so often struck others, art struck now thyself. JOHNSON. Line 33. That without which a soldier, and his sword,

Grants scurce distinction.] The sense is this: Thou hast that, Ventidius, which if thou didst want, there would be no distinction between thee and thy sword. You would be both equally cutting and senseless.


Line 60.


-Arabian bird.] The phạnix. JOHNSON

-bards, poets,] Not only the tautology of bards

« ZurückWeiter »