Imatges de pÓgina


Lear. Didit thou give all to thy daughters ? and art thou come to this?

Didlt thou give them all?
Now all the plagues that in the pendulous air
Hang fated o'er mens' faults, light on thy daughters!

Kent. He hath no daughters fir.
Lear. Death ! traitor, nothing could have subdu'd

To such a lowness, but his unkind daughters.
Is it the fashion that discarded fathers
Should have thus little mercy on their flesh ?
Judicious punishment ! 'twas this flesh begot
Those pelican daughters (18).

SCENE VI. On Man. (19) Is man no more than this? Consider him well. Thou ow'st the worm no filk, the beast no hide, the Theep no wool, the cat no perfume. Ha! here's three of us are sophisticated. Thou art the thing itself: unaccommodated man is no more but such a poor, bare, forked animal as thou art. Off, off, you lendings: come unbutton here.

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The Justice of Providence.

That I am wretched,
Makes thee the happier: heavens deal so still!


(18) I have given the Reader all the most beautiful passages of this celebrated part of the tragedy, and have avoided any comments on it, as its beauties are so striking, and so generally commended; however, if he thinks proper, he may, by consulting Mr. Smith's translation of Longinus, find some observations there, not unworthy his regard. See the 3d note on the rotha section.

(19) Is man, &c.] See Measure for Meafüre,

Let the fuperfluous and lust-dieted man,
(20) That flaves your ordinance, that will not see
Because he does not feel, feel your power quickly ;
So distribution should undo excess,
And each man have enough.


Patience and Sorrow.

Patience and sorrow strove
Which should express her geodlieft: you have seen
Sunshine and rain at once: her smiles and tears
(21) Were like a better day. Those happiest smiles,



(20) That Naves, &c.] Mr. Warburton is for reading, braves here : but he still forgets how frequently Shakespear makes verbs of substantives, and instead of endeavouring to explain his author's words, immediately has recourse to the easy art of altering, when there is any difficulty: by Naves your ordinance, the poet means, makes a Nave of your ordinance : “ makes it subfervient, as Mr. Upion obferves, to his superfluities and Justs.”

(21) Were like a bitter day.] So the old editions read ; Mr. Werburton fays, “ without question we should read,

A wetter May
i. c.'a spring-season wetter than ordinary; I cannot come
into his opinion; nor by any means apprehend, how her smiles
and tears can with any propriety be compared to a spring-season,
wetter than ordinary: the poet is comparing her patience and
forrow, exprest, the one by smiles, the other by tears, to a day,
wherein there is both sunshine and rain at the same time: you
have seen, says he, sunshine and rain at once; such was ber pa-
tience and forrow : her (miles and tears were like a day so chequerid,
when the rain and the sunshine contended as it were together.
This I apprehend to be the sense of the passage. But then
what must we do with better? I own myself incapable of fixing
any sense to it, nor does any emendation strike me, that the
Reader perhaps will judge plausible enough : he'll see, I had an
eye in the explaining of the passage, on chequer'di

Her smiles and tears
Were like a chequer'd day i

That play'd on her ripe lip, seem'd not to know
What guests were in her eyes; which parted thence,
As pearls from diamonds dropt.-In brief,
Sorrow would be a rarity most belov'd,
If all could fo become it.

Scene IV. Description of Lear distracted.

(22) Alack, 'tis he; why, he was met even now
As mad as the vext sea; singing aloud;
Crown'd with rank fumiterr, and furrow weeds,
With hardocks, hemlock, nettles, cuckow-flowers
Darnel, and all the idle weeds that grow.
In our fustaining corn.

SCENE VI. Description of Dover-Cliff.

Come on, fir; here's the place -stand still. Hosy

And dizzy 'tis, to cast one's eyes fo low!
The crows and choughs, that wing the midway air,
Shew scarce so gross as beetles. Half way down
Hangs one that gathers famphire; dreadful trade!
Methinks, he seems no bigger than his head.
The fisher-men, that walk upon the beach,
Appear like mice; and yond tall anchoring bark,
Diminish'd to her cock ; her cock, a buoy
Almost too small for fight. The murmuring surge,
That on th' unnumbered idle pebbles chafes,
Cannot be heard so high. I'll look no more,
Lest my brain turn, and the deficient fight
Topple down headlong.


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which is the most probable word that occurs at present, tho' I advance it not with any degree of certainty. He speaks of a shequcr'd svadow, in Titus Andronicus, Act. 1. Sc. 4.

(22) Alack, &c.] See. Hamlei, A. 4. S. 10. and the note,


Glofter's Farewel to the World.!

(23) O, you mighty gods!
This world I do renounce: and in your sights
Shake patiently my great affliction off:
If I could bear it longer, and not fall
To quarrel with your great opposelefs wills,
My snuff and loathed part of nature should
Burn itself out. If Edgar live, O, bless him!

Scene VII. Lear, in his Madness, on the gross

Flatterers of Princes. Ha! Goneril! ha! Regan! they flattered me like a dog, and told me I had white hairs in my beard, ere the black ones were there. To fay, ay, and no, to every thing that I faid

Ay, and no too, was no good divinity. When the rain came to wet me once, and the wind to make me chatter; when the thunder would not peace at my bidding; there I found 'em, there I fmelt 'em out. Go to, they are not (24) men o'their


(23) Gbfier is afterwards convinced of bis mistake, and confirmed in the duty of sufferance : he says;

I do remember now: henceforth I'll bear
Afiction : till it do cry out itself,

Eriough, enough, and die. At the end of the Oedipus, Coloneus of Sophocles, there is a fine refection like this;

Το φερον εκ Θεο, &c.
That which the gods bring on us, we should bear

With resignation, nor consume with sorrow. (24) See Ad 2. Sc. 6. foregoing. Mr. Upion, mifled by the beginning of this speech; and apprehending the king, in his madness used exact connection, tells us we should not read, men o’their words, but women of their words: whereas it is plain,


words; they told me, I was every thing: 'tis a lie, I am not ague-proof.

On the Abuse of Power. Thou rascal beadle, hold thy bloody hand : Why dost thou lafh that whore? strip thine own back; Thou hotly lust'rt to ufe her in that kind, For which thou whipp'it her. The usurer hangs the

cozener. Through tatter'd cloaths finall vices do appear; Robes and furr'd gowns hide all. Plate fins with gold, And the strong lance of justice hurtless breaks : Arm it in rags, a pigmy's straw doth pierce it. None does offend, none, I say, none; I'll able 'em ;) Take that of me, my friend, who hath the pow'r To seal th' accuser's lips. Get thee glass eyes, And, like a scurvy politician, seem To see the things thou dost not,


Cordelia on the Ingratitude of her


O, my dear feather, restoration hang
Thy medicine on my lip; and let this kiss
Repair those violent harms that my two fisters
Have in thy reverence made!
Had you not been their father, those white fakes
Did challenge pity of them. Was this a face,
To be expos'd against the warring winds ?
To stand against the deep, dread bolted thunder?
In the most terrible and nimble stroke
Of quick, cross lightning?

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he runs off from the thoughts of his daugħters to those who flattered him, and all through the speech speaks of them only: the criticism is fcarce worth remarking, except it be to shew, how subject all of us are to mistakes, and how littie reason the very wifet have to triumph over the errors of others.

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