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Farther, after our present line 18 the first draft ran as follows, three lines now omitted standing instead of the present seven between 18 and 26:
“ By leaving out those harsh ill-sounding jars
May keep in tune with Heaven," &c. But besides these positive omissions or recasts of whole passages, a scrutiny of the drafts in comparison with each other and with our present printed copy brings to light a great many minute variations. Thus native in the last line of the first of the now omitted passages is a substitution in the original draft itself for home-bred. For whilst in the first line of the same passage the second draft substitutes as and in the second line the second draft has the additional adjective holy before "spousal”—this word holy being again deleted and happy substituted in the margin—so in the second draft the first two lines of the third of the now omitted passages are altered thus :
By leaving out those harsh chromatic jars
The following is an indication of the chief differences of the original phrasing in the lines as they are now printed, and of the successive verbal changes through which the present text of these lines was arrived at :Line 3: originally,
“ Mix your choice words, and happiest sounds employ ;” now,
“ Wed your divine sounds and mixed power employ." Line 10: originally princely, then tripled, now burning. Line in: originally,
“ Their loud immortal trumpets blow ;' then,
“ Loud symphony of silver trumpets blow ;” then,
High-listed, loud, and angel trumpets blow ;” now,
“ Their loud uplifted angel-trumpets blow." Line 12 : originally,
“And Cherubim, sweet-winged squires ;"
" And the Cherubic host in thousand quires." Line 14: originally the blooming, now victorious. Line 15 : originally sacred, now holy.
Line 19 : originally could, now did.
“ To live and sing with Him in ever-endless light." Subsequent successive variations :
“ To live and sing with Him in ever-glorious light ;”
* To live and sing with Him in never-parting light ;” and now, finally,
“ To live with Him, and sing in endless morn of light.”
SONG ON MAY MORNING.
Some of the phrases of this little piece, such as “ Day's harbinger," “comes dancing,” “green lap,” “ pale primrose "-belong to the traditional diction of poetry, and are found in poets older than Milton. Among instances cited, in unnecessary number, by Warton, take one from Spenser's Astrophel :
“ The dancing day, forth coming from the east.” “And welcome thee,” &c. Warton quotes from Chaucer's Knight's Tale:
“ O Maye, with all thy floures and thy grene,'
Right welcome be thou, faire freshe Maye.
This is the simple title of the lines in Milton's editions of his Poems; but see, in Introduction, the fuller title in the Second Folio Shakespeare of 1632. Milton spells his great predecessor's name “Shakespear,” both here and in L'Allegro (line 133).
1–4. " What needs my Shakespeare," &c. One might almost suppose, from the wording of these lines, that there was a proposal, in or about 1630, to erect a monument to Shakespeare. It may be, however, that Milton had no such suggestion to move him, but merely thought for himself that Shakespeare did not need a monument. The famous monument in Stratford church had been put up at least as early as
1623, or seven years after Shakespeare's death, for it is mentioned in the lines by L. Digges to Shakespeare's memory prefixed to the First Folio, published in that year :
'Shakespeare, at length thy pious fellows give
By the bye, this fact that the monument was in existence in 1623 is an argument for the authenticity of the bust. Would not the parishioners of Stratford at that date, remembering Shakespeare's face perfectly as they did, remembering it as of quite recent Sundays when they had seen him walking to his place in the church, have resented the putting up of a bust glaringly unlike the original ?
4. star-ypointing,” i.e. pointing to the stars. The word is hardly a correct formation, as the prefix y (German ge) belongs properly to the past participle passive, as in yclad, yclept.
8. “livelong." So in both Milton's editions, but lasting in the Second Folio Shakespeare.
9, 10. "to the shame of slow-endeavouring art, thy easy numbers flow.” A reference to Shakespeare's extreme ease and fluency in composition, as attested by his fellow-players Heminge and Condell, the editors of the First Folio : “His mind and hand went together : And “what he thought he uttered with that easiness that we have scarce “received from him a blot in his papers.” Ben Jonson testifies the same. "I remember," he says in his Discoveries, "the players have
often mentioned it as an honour to Shakespeare that, in his writing,
whatsoever he penned, he never blotted out a line. My answer hath “been, Would he had blotted out a thousand! Which they thought a “malevolent speech. I had not told posterity this, but for their 'ignorance who chose that circumstance to commend their friend by
wherein he most faulted, and to justify mine own candour. For I “loved the man, and do honour his memory, on this side idolatry, as “much as any. He was indeed honest, and of an open and free nature; “had an excellent phantasy, brave notions, and gentle expressions; “wherein he flowed with that facility that sometimes it was necessary “he should be stopped. Sufflaminandus erat, as Augustus said of “Haterius.” This extreme ease in composition, or contentedness with first drafts, did not belong to Milton; and he notes it in Shakespeare with admiration.
“unvalued": invaluable. Todd quotes from Shakespeare (Rich. III. I. 4.) "unvalued jewels."
12. “ Delphic lines," i.e. oracular lines, as if from Apollo's own temple at Delphi.
14. "Dost make us marble with too much conceiving": "dost change us into marble by the over-effort of thought to which thou compellest us"-a very exact description of Shakespeare's effect on his readers. have ventured to emphasize the word us to bring out the sense ; which is that we, Shakespeare's readers, are the true marble of his tomb or monument.
ON THE UNIVERSITY CARRIER.
2. " And here." In the First Edition "A here": evidently a misprint.
8. “ Dodged with him betwixt Cambridge and The Bull.” See Introd. -Dodge is an old English word, meaning, according to Wedgwood (Dict. of Eng. Etym.), “ to jog, to move quickly to and fro; hence to follow in the track of anyone, to follow his ins and outs, also to deceive one by change of motion." Richardson, in his Dictionary, supposes the word akin to dog (to run after like a dog); but Wedgwood connects it with dod or dad (Scotticè daud), a luinp of anything soft and moist, that may be flattened by throwing it against a wall or on the ground. 15.
“ Showed him”: i.e. Death showed him; the nominative Death in the first clause of the sentence running on after the “But” of
ANOTHER ON THE SAME.
5. “ Made of sphere-metal," i.e. of the same perfect and enduring metal of which the heavenly spheres are composed.
14. “ Tov long vacation hastened on his term.” The whole piece is a string of puns on Hobson's business and the circumstances of his cleath. The pun here is on the antithesis of the University Long s'acation and Term time.
18. “If I may'nt carry;" &c. Pun on the phrase "carry or fetch." 20. “bearers," i.e. of the coffin. 29, 30.
“ Obedient to the moon," &c. Hobson made four journeys every month-alternately from Cambridge to London and from London to Cambridge.
32. “his wain was his increase." Pun on the two identical sounds ---wane, wasting or diminution, and wain, waggon.
33. “ His letters," &c. Hobson acted as a postman between Cambridge and London, bringing letters from London to the College dons and students, and carrying back their answers.
AN EPITAPH ON THE MARCHIONESS OF WINCHESTER,
2, 3. " wife of Winchester, a Viscount's daughter, an Earl's heir," See Introduction. 7,
8. " Summers three times eight save one she had told" : i.e. the lady was twenty-three years of age at her death.
13, 14. “ Nature and Fate had had no strife," &c. : i.e. had the lady lived to an age equal in length to her merits, her death would have been natural ; Nature and Fate would then have agreed in closing it, whereas now Nature quarrelled with what Fate had done.
17. “The virgin quire"; the bride's maids.
18. “ The god that sits at marriage feast”: i.e. Hymen, bringing his torch.
22. “a cypress-bud": a bud of the funereal cypress, mixed with the marriage-wreath.
23—25. “ Once had the early matrons . . . and now," &c. : i.e. she had given birth to one child, a son; and now, a second time, she was in childbirth. Lucina, among
the Romans, was the goddess of childbirth (literally, of light, or bringing to light), and was identical with Juno or Diana.—The only son of the young Marchioness was Charles, called Lord St. John of Basing during his father's lifetime. He succeeded his father in 1674 as 6th Marquis of Winchester, and in 1689 was created Duke of Bolton.
28. “ Atropos " : one of the three Fates, the other two being Clotho and Lachesis. While Clotho
span the thread of life, and Lachesis decided what its length was to be, Atropos (i.e. the Inevitable) cut it across at the fated point.
33. “ languished.” The verb "to languish " is here used actively, as meaning "to fatigue," "to cause to languish."
35-40. “ So have I seen," &c. The meaning is “So have I seen some tender plant completely plucked up by some careless swain who meant to pluck only its newly-shot flower."
47, 48. "Gentle lady," &c. Warton compares the lines in Cymbeline (IV. 2):
Quiet consummation have,
And renowned be thy grave.", 50. " seize": in the peculiar legal sense of “ to put one in possession of," " to settle one in a property."