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* ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA.] Among the entries in the books of the Stationers' Company, October 19, 1593, I find "A Booke entituled the Tragedie of Cleopatra." It is entered by Symon Waterfon, for whom fome of Daniel's works were printed; and therefore it is probably by that author, of whofe Cleopatra there are feveral editions; and, among others, one in 1594.
In the fame volumes, May 20, 1608, Edward Blount entered "A Booke called Anthony and Cleopatra." This is the firft notice I have met with concerning any edition of this play more ancient than the folio, 1623. STEEVENS.
Antony and Cleopatra was written, I imagine, in the year 1608. See An Attempt to ascertain the Order of Shakspeare's Plays, Vol. II. MALONE.
Friends to Cæfar,
Friends of Pompey.
Taurus, Lieutenant-General to Cæfar.
Silius, an Officer in Ventidius's Army.
Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt.
Octavia, Sifter to Cæfar, and Wife to Antony.
Charmian, } Attendants on Cleopatra,
Officers, Soldiers, Meffengers, and other Attendants.
SCENE, difperfed; in feveral Parts of the Roman Empire.
ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA.
ACT I. SCENE I.
Alexandria. A Room in Cleopatra's Palace.
Enter DEMETRIUS and PHILO.
PHI. Nay, but this dotage of our general's,' O'erflows the measure: those his goodly eyes, That o'er the files and mufters of the war Have glow'd like plated Mars, now bend, now turn, The office and devotion of their view
Upon a tawny front: his captain's heart,
of our general's,] It has already been observed that this phrafeology (not, of our general,) was the common phraseology of Shakspeare's time. MALONE.
An erroneous reference in Mr. Malone's edition, prevents me from doing complete juftice to his remark. STEEVENS.
reneges-] Renounces. Pope.
So, in King Lear: "Renege, affirm," &c. This word is likewise used by Stanyhurft, in his verfion of the second Book of Virgil's Eneid:
"To live now longer, Troy burnt, he flatly reneageth." STEEVENS.
And is become the bellows, and the fan,
3 And is become the bellows, and the fan,
To cool a gipfy's luft.] In this paffage fomething feems to be wanting. The bellows and fan being commonly used for contrary purposes, were probably oppofed by the author, who might perhaps have written :
is become the bellows, and the fan,
In Lyly's Midas, 1592, the bellows is used both to cool and to kindle: "Methinks Venus and Nature ftand with each of them a pair of bellows, one cooling my low birth, the other kindling my lofty affections." STEEVENS.
The text is undoubtedly right. The bellows, as well as the fan, cools the air by ventilation; and Shakspeare confidered it here merely as an inftrument of wind, without attending to the domestick use to which it is commonly applied. We meet with a fimilar phraseology in his Venus and Adonis :
"Then, with her windy fighs, and golden hairs, "To fan and blow them dry again, the feeks." The following lines in Spenfer's Fairy Queen, B. II. c. ix. at once support and explain the text:
"But to delay the heat, left by mischaunce
"It might breake out, aud fet the whole on fyre,
"A huge great payre of bellowes, which did ftyre
Continually, and cooling breath infpyre." MALONE.
Johnson's amendment is unneceffary, and his reasons for it ill founded. The bellows and the fan have the fame effects. When applied to a fire, they increase it; but when applied to any other warm fubftance, they cool it. M. MASON.
-gipfy's luft.] Gipfy is here used both in the original meaning for an Egyptian, and in its accidental sense for a bad woman. JOHNSON.
Flourish. Enter ANTONY and CLEOPATRA, with their Trains; Eunuchs fanning her.
Take but good note, and you shall see in him
CLEO. If it be love indeed, tell me how much. ANT. There's beggary in the love that can be reckon❜d.5
CLEO. I'll fet a bourn how far to be belov'd.
4 The triple pillar-] Triple is here ufed improperly for third, or one of three. One of the triumvirs, one of the three mafters of the world. WARBURTON.
So, in All's well that ends well:
Which, as the dearest iffue of his practice,
"He bade me ftore up as a triple eye." MALOne.
To fuftain the pillars of the earth is a fcriptural phrafe. Thus, in Pfalm 75: "The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are diffolved. I bear up the pillars of it."
5 There's beggary in the love that can be reckon'd.] So, in Romeo and Juliet:
They are but beggars that can count their worth." "Bafia pauca cupit, qui numerare poteft."
Mart. L. VI. Ep. 36. Again, in the 13th Book of Ovid's Metamorphofis; as tranf lated by Golding, p. 172:
Pauperis eft numerare pecus.
"Tuth! beggars of their cattel ufe the number for to know." STEEVENS.
Again, in Much Ado about Nothing:
"I were but little happy, If I could fay how much."
So, in The Winter's Tale:
one that fixes
"No bourn 'twixt his and mine." STEEVENS,
Bound or limit. POPE.