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now my double-henned sparrow! 'loo, Paris, 'loo! The bull has the game:-'ware horns, ho! [Exeunt PARIS and MENELAUS.
MAR. Turn, slave, and fight.
THER. What art thou?
MAR. A bastard son of Priam's 5.
THER. I am a bastard too; I love bastards: I am a bastard begot, bastard instructed, bastard in mind, bastard in valour, in every thing illegitimate. One bear will not bite another, and wherefore should one bastard? Take heed, the quarrel's most ominous to us: if the son of a whore fight for a whore, he tempts judgment: Farewell, bastard.
MAR. The devil take thee, coward!
Another Part of the Field.
HECT. Most putrified core, so fair without, Thy goodly armour thus hath cost thy life. Now is my day's work done; I'll take good breath: Rest, sword; thou hast thy fill of blood and death! [Puts off his Helmet, and hangs his Shield behind him.
Enter ACHILLES and Myrmidons.
ACHIL. Look, Hector, how the sun begins to set;
5 A BASTARD Son of Priam's.] Bastard, in ancient times, was a reputable appellation. So, in King Henry VI. Part I. Act I. Sc. II. : "Bastard of Orleans, thrice welcome to us."
See note on this passage. See also Pope's note on v. 93, Iliad V. and on v. 343, Iliad VIII. STEEVENS.
How ugly night comes breathing at his heels:
HECT. I am unarm'd; forego this vantage,
ACHIL. Strike, fellows, strike 7; this is the man I seek. [HECTOR falls. So, Ilion, fall thou next*! now, Troy, sink down; Here lies thy heart, thy sinews, and thy bone.
*First folio omits next.
+ Quarto, come, Troy.
6 Even with the VAIL] The vail is, I think, the sinking of the sun; not veil or cover. JOHNSON.
So, in Measure for Measure, "vail your regard upon," signifies, -Let your notice descend upon, &c. STEEVENS.
Strike, fellows, strike ;] This particular of Achilles overpowering Hector by numbers, and without armour, is taken from the old story-book. HANMER.
Hector, in Lydgate's poem, falls by the hand of Achilles; but it is Troilus who, having been inclosed round by the Myrmidons, is killed after his armour had been hewn from his body, which was afterwards drawn through the field at the horse's tail. The Oxford editor, I believe, was misinformed; for in the old story-book of The Three Destructions of Troy, I find likewise the same account given of the death of Troilus. Heywood, in his Rape of Lucrece, 1638, seems to have been indebted to some such work as Sir T. Hanmer mentions:
"Had puissant Hector by Achilles' hand
Dy'd in a single monomachie, Achilles
"Had been the worthy; but being slain by odds,
The poorest Myrmidon had as much honour "As faint Achilles, in the Trojan's death."
It is not unpleasant to observe with what vehemence Lydgate, who in the grossest manner has violated all the characters drawn by Homer, takes upon him to reprehend the Grecian poet as the original offender. Thus, in his fourth book:
"Oh thou, Homer, for shame be now red,
"And thee amase that holdest thy selfe so wyse,
Why gevest thou hym so hye a prayse and laude ?”
On, Myrmidons; and cry you all amain,
A Retreat sounded. Hark! a retreat upon our Grecian part. MYR. The Trojan trumpets sound the like, my lord.
ACHIL. The dragon wing of night' o'erspreads the earth,
And, stickler like 2, the armies separates.
9 On, Myrmidons; and cry you all amain, Achilles hath the mighty Hector slain.]
Ἠράμεθα μέγα κῦδος· ἐπέφνομεν ̔́Εκτορα δῖον,
Iliad XXII. v. 393. MALONE.
MALONE. 2 And, STICKLER-like,] A stickler was one who stood by to part the combatants when victory could be determined without bloodshed. They are often mentioned by Sidney. "Anthony (says Sir Thomas North, in his translation of Plutarch,) was himself in person a stickler to part the young men when they had fought enough." They were called sticklers, from carrying sticks or staves in their hands, with which they interposed between the duellists. We now call these sticklers-sidesmen. So, again, in a comedy, called, Fortune by Land and Sea, by Heywood and Rowley: "tis not fit that every apprentice should with his shopclub play between us the stickler." Again, in the tragedy of Faire Mariam, 1613:
And was the stickler 'twixt my heart and him." Again, in Fuimus Troes, 1633:
"As sticklers in their nation's enmity." STEEVENS.
Minsheu gives the same etymology, in his Dictionary, 1617: A stickler betweene two, so called as putting a sticke or staffe betweene two fighting or fencing together." MALONE.
Sticklers are arbitrators, judges, or, as called in some places, sidesmen. At every wrestling in Cornwall, before the games begin, a certain number of sticklers are chosen, who regulate the proceedings, and determine every dispute. The nature of the English language, as I conceive, does not allow the derivation of stickler from stick, which, as a word, it has not the remotest connection with. Stickler (stic-kle-er) is immediately from the verb stickle, to interfere, to take part with, to busy one's self in any matter. RITSON.
My half-supp'd sword 3, that frankly would have fed, 'Pleas'd with this dainty bit, thus goes to bed.[Sheaths his Sword. Come, tie his body to my horse s tail; Along the field I will the Trojan trail *. [Exeunt.
Enter AGAMEMNON, AJAX, MENELAUS, Nestor, DIOMEDES, and Others, marching. Shouts
AGAM. Hark! hark! what shout is that?
Whatever might be Mr. Ritson's notions as to the nature of the English language, there can be no doubt that the word stickler was derived from stick. What follows was communicated to me by Sir Joseph Banks. "My memorandum respecting stickler is this: 1st Henry 6, A. D. 1422. The King commuted under the authority of Parliament with the Prior and Convent of Inychester for certain privileges enjoy'd by them within the Royal Park of Clarendon, one of which was to have a person called a Stickler employed daily in cutting wood in the King's Park for the use of the Convent.'" Cotton's Records of Parliament, p. 565. MALONE.
3 My half supp'd sword, &c.] These four despicable verses, as well as the rhyming fit with which "the blockish Ajax" is afterwards seized, could scarce have fallen from the pen of our author, in his most unlucky moments of composition. STEEVENS.
Whatever may have been the remainder of this speech, as it came out of Shakspeare's hands, we may be confident that this bombast stuff made no part of it. Our author's gold was stolen, and the thief's brass left in its place. RITSON.
Perhaps this play was hastily altered by Shakspeare from an elder piece, which the reader will find mentioned in p. 223, n. 1. Some of the scenes therefore he might have fertilized, and left others as barren as he found them. STEEVENS.
4 Along the field I will the Trojan trail.] Such almost (changing the name of Troilus for that of Hector) is the argument of Lydgate's 31st chapter, edit. 1555: "How Achilles slewe the worthy Troylus unknyghtly, and after trayled his body through the fyelde tyed to his horse." STEEVENS.
Achilles! Hector's slain! Achilles !
Dro. The bruit is-Hector's slain, and by Achilles. AJAX. If it be so, yet bragless let it be; Great Hector was as good a man
AGAM. March patiently along :-Let one be sent To pray Achilles see us at our tent.If in his death the gods have us befriended, Great Troy is ours, and our sharp wars are ended. [Exeunt, marching.
Another Part of the Field.
Enter ENEAS and Trojans.
ENE. Stand, ho! yet are we masters of the field: Never go home; here starve we out the night'.
TRO. Hector is slain.
In beastly sort, dragg'd through the shameful field.—
* First folio, a man as good.
s Never go home; &c.] This line is in the quarto given to Troilus. JOHNSON.
SMILE at Troy!]
Thus the ancient copies; but it would better agree with the rest of Troilus's wish, were we to read, with a former editor:
smite at Troy !
I say, at once!" STEEVENS.
There can be no doubt but we should read-smite at, instead of smile. The following words, "I say, at once," make that unquestionable. To call upon the heavens to frown, and on the Gods