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press, the reader is apprized by a note; and every
7. "And now he feasts, mouthing the flesh of men,—”
"And now he feasts, mousing the flesh of men,
That I may be accurately understood, I subjoin a few of these unnoticed corrections:
In King Henry VI. P. I. Act I. sc. vi:
"Thy promises are like Adonis' gardens,
"That one day bloom'd, and fruitful were the next."
The old copy reads-garden.
In King John, Act IV. sc. ii:
"Does shew the mood of a much-troubled breast."
The old copy reads-Do.
Ibidem, Act I. sc. i:
""Tis too respective, and too sociable," &c.
The old copy,-'Tis two respective," &c.
Again, in the same play, we find in the original copy:
Against the inuoluerable clouds of heaven."
In King Henry V. Act V. sc. ii:
"Corrupting in its own fertility."
The old copy reads-it.
In Timon of Athens, Act I. sc. i:
"Come, shall we in?"
The old copy has-Comes.
Ibidem: Even on their knees, and hands,-.
The old copy has-hand.
In Cymbeline, Act III. sc. iv:
"The handmaids of all women, or, more truly,
The old copy has-it.
It cannot be expected that the page should be encumbered with the notice of such obvious mistakes of the press as are here enumerated. With the exception of errors such as these, whenever any emendation has been adopted, it is mentioned in a note, and ascribed to its author.
emendation that has been adopted, is ascribed to its proper author. When it is considered that
9. "For grief is proud, and makes his owner stoop." P. 52. "For grief is proud, and makes his owner stout."
10. "O, that a man would speak these words to me!" "O, that a man should speak these words to me!"
11. "Is't not amiss, when it is truly done?" P. 64.
13. "A whole armado of collected sail." P. 74. "A whole armado of convicted sail." P. 514. 14. "And bitter shame hath spoil'd the sweet world's taste.” P. 79.
"And bitter shame hath spoil'd the sweet word's taste."
Strong reasons make strong actions." P. 81. Strong reasons make strange actions." P. 522. 16. "Must make a stand at what your highness will.”
"Doth make a stand at what your highness will."
17. "Had none, my lord! why, did not you provoke me?” "Had none, my lord! why, did you not provoke me?" P. 536.
18. "Mad'st it no conscience to destroy a king." P. 97. "Made it no conscience to destroy a king." P. 537. 19. "Sir, sir, impatience has its privilege." P. 102. "Sir, sir, impatience has his privilege." 20. "Or, when he doom'd this beauty to the
Or, when he doom'd this beauty to a grave,
there are one hundred thousand lines in these plays, and that it often was necessary to consult
21. "To the yet-unbegotten sins of time." P. 102.
"To the yet-unbegotten sin of times." P. 541.
"And breathing to this breathless excellence," P. 102. "And breathing to his breathless excellence,-"
23. "And your supplies, which you have wish'd so long,-"
P. 121. long,-"
"And your supply, which you have wish'd so. 561.
24. "What's that to thee? Why may I not demand—”
"What's that to thee? Why may not I demand—”
25. "O, my sweet sir, news fitted to the night." P. 123. "O, my sweet sir, news fitting to the night." P. 563. 26. "Death, having prey'd upon the outward parts, "Leaves them; invisible his siege is now
Against the mind," P. 124.
"Death, having prey'd upon the outward parts,
27. "The salt of them is hot." P. 125.
"The salt in them is hot." P. 568.
Two other restorations in this play I have not set down: "Before we will lay down our just-borne arms—” Act II. sc. it.
"Be these sad signs confirmers of thy word."
because I pointed them out on a former occasion.
Act III. sc. i.
It may perhaps be urged that some of the variations in these lists, are of no great consequence; but to preserve our poet's genuine text is certainly important; for otherwise, as Dr. Johnson has justly observed, "the history of our language will be lost;" and as our poet's words are changed, we are constantly in danger of losing his meaning also. Every reader must wish to peruse what Shakspeare wrote, supported at once by the authority of the authentick copies, and the usage of his contempora ries, rather than what the editor of the second folio, or Pope, or Hanmer, or Warburton, have arbitrarily substituted in its place.
So sighs, and tears, and groans,
"Show minutes, times, and hours: O but my time," &c.
So again, in The Comedy of Errors :
"I'll meet you in that place, some hour, sir, hence."
instead of the original reading,
"I'll meet you in that place some hour hence."
Again, in The Winter's Tale, Act I. sc. ii:
wishing clocks more swift?
"Hours, minutes? the noon, midnight? and all eyes," &c.
instead of the original reading,
"Hours, minutes? noon, midnight? and all eyes," &c.
Again, in All's well that ends well, Act II. sc. iii:
"Thou rather, with thy sharp and sulphurous bolt,
"Than the soft mirtle;-But man, proud man," &c. There can be no doubt that a word was omitted in the last line; perhaps some epithet to mirtle. But the editor of the second folio, resorting to his usual expedient, absurdly reads:
"Than the soft mirtle. O but man, proud man,So, in Titus Andronicus, Act III. sc. ii: complaynet being corruptly printed instead of complayner,
"Speechless complaynet, I will learn thy thoughts,-" this editor, with equal absurdity, reads:
Speechless complaint, O, I will learn thy thoughts." I have again and again had occasion to mention in the notes on these plays, that omission is of all the errors of the press that which most frequently happens. On collating the fourth edition of King Richard III. printed in 1612, with the second printed in 1598, I found no less than twenty-six words omitted.
"Which challenges itself as honours born,
"And is not like the sire.. Honours thrive," &c.
This editor, not knowing that sire was used as a dissyllable, reads:
"And is not like the sire. Honours best thrive," &c.
So, in King Henry VI. P. I:
"Rescued is Orleans from the English."
Not knowing that English was used as a trisyllable, he has completed the line, which he supposed defective, according to his own fancy, and reads:
"Rescu'd is Orleans from the English wolves.”
The same play furnishes us with various other proofs of his ignorance of our poet's metre. Thus, instead of
"Orleans the bastard, Charles, Burgundy,-".
he has printed (not knowing that Charles was used as a word of two syllables,)
"Orleans the bastard, Charles, and Burgundy."
So, instead of the original reading,
"Divinest creature, Astræa's daughter,-"
(Astræa being used as a word of three syllables,)
he has printed
"Divinest creature, bright Astræa's daughter.”
"Whereas the contrary bringeth bliss."