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Out at the postern by the abbey-wall;
I fear, I am attended by some spies.
EGL. Fear not: the forest is not three leagues off; If we recover that, we are sure enough. [Exeunt.
The Same, A Room in the DUKE'S Palace.
Enter THURIO, PROTEUS, and JULIA. THU. Sir Proteus, what says Silvia to my suit? PRO. O, sir, I find her milder than she was; And yet she takes exceptions at your person. THU, What, that my leg is too long? PRO. No; that it is too little.
THU. I'll wear a boot, to make it somewhat
PRO. But love will not be spurr'd to what it loaths *.
PRO. She says, it is a fair one.
THU. Nay, then the wanton lies; my face is black. PRO. But pearls are fair, and the old saying is, Black men are pearls in beauteous ladies' eyes'.
SURE enough.] Sure is save, out of danger. JOHNSON. * Pro. But love will not be spurr'd to what it LOATHS.] Isuspect that this line should be given, as well as a subsequent one, to Julia; and was meant to be spoken aside. It is exactly in the style of her other sarcastick speeches; and Proteus, who is playing upon Thurio's credulity, would hardly represent him as an object of loathing to his mistress. BosWELL.
1 Black men are pearls, &c.] So, in Heywood's Iron Age, 1632: -a black complexion
"Is always gracious in a woman's eye."
Again, in Sir Giles Goosecap, 1606:
but to make every black slovenly cloud a pearle in her eye." STEEVENS.
“A black man is a jewel in a fair woman's eye,”—is one of Ray's proverbial sentences. MALONE.
JUL. 'Tis true 2, such pearls as put out ladies'
For I had rather wink than look on them. [Aside. THU. How likes she my discourse?
PRO. Ill, when you talk of war.
THU. But well, when I discourse of love, and peace?
JUL. But better, indeed, when you hold your [Aside.
THU. What says she to my valour?
THU. What says she to my birth?
PRO. That you are well deriv'd.
JUL. True; from a gentleman to a fool. [Aside. THU. Considers she my possessions?
PRO. O, ay; and pities them.
JUL. That such an ass should owe them. [Aside. PRO. That they are out by lease 3.
JUL. Here comes the duke.
2 Jul. 'Tis true, &c.] This speech, which certainly belongs to Julia, is given in the old copy to Thurio. Mr. Rowe restored it to its proper owner. STEEVENS.
3 That they are out by lease.] I suppose he means, because Thurio's folly has let them on disadvantageous terms. STEEVENS.
She pities Sir Thurio's possessions, because they are let to others, and are not in his own dear hands. Such appears to me to be the meaning. M. MASON.
"By Thurio's possessions, he himself understands his lands and estate. But Proteus chooses to take the word likewise in a figurative sense, as signifying his mental endowments: and when he says they are out by lease, he means they are no longer enjoyed by their master, (who is a fool,) but are leased out to another." Edinburgh Magazine, Nov. 1786. STEEVENS.
For this explication, which is clearly just, the reader, I believe, is indebted to the late Sir David Dalrymple, Bart. usually denominated Lord Hailes. MALONE.
DUKE. How now, sir Proteus? how now, Thurio? Which of you saw sir Eglamour*, of late?
THU. Not I.
PRO. Nor I.
DUKE. Saw you my daughter?
DUKE. Why, then she's fled unto that peasant Valentine:
And Eglamour is in her company.
'Tis true; for friar Laurence met them both,
At Patrick's cell this even; and there she was not:
That leads towards Mantua; whither they are fled :
PRO. And I will follow, more for Silvia's love, Than hate of Eglamour that goes with her.
SIR Eglamour,] Sir, which is not in the old copy, was inserted by the editor of the second folio. MALONE.
5-a PEEVISH girl,] Peevish, in ancient language, signifies foolish. So, in King Henry VI. Part I. :
"To send such peevish tokens to a king." STEEVENS. RECKLESS Sylvia.] i. e. careless, heedless. So, in Hamlet: like a puff'd and reckless libertine."
JUL. And I will follow, more to cross that love, Than hate for Silvia, that is gone for love.
Frontiers of Mantua. The Forest.
Enter SILVIA and OUT-LAWS.
1 OUT. Come, come; be patient, we must bring you to our captain.
SIL. A thousand more mischances than this
Have learn'd me how to brook this patiently.
2 OUT. Come, bring her away.
1 OUT. Where is the gentleman that was with her?
3 OUT. Being nimble-footed, he hath out-run us, But Moyses, and Valerius, follow him. Go thou with her to the west end of the wood, There is our captain: we'll follow him that's fled; The thicket is beset, he cannot 'scape.
1 OUT. Come, I must bring you to our captain's
Fear not; he bears an honourable mind,
SIL. O Valentine, this I endure for thee!
Another Part of the Forest.
VAL. HOW use doth breed a habit in a man!
Here can I sit alone, unseen of any,
Have some unhappy passenger in chace : They love me well; yet I have much to do, To keep them from uncivil outrages. Withdraw thee, Valentine; who's this comes here ? [Steps aside.
7 RECORD my woes.] To record anciently signified to sing. So, in The Pilgrim, by Beaumont and Fletcher:
O sweet, sweet! how the birds record too?" Again, in a pastoral, by N. Breton, published in England's Helicon, 1614:
"Sweet Philomel, the bird that hath the heavenly throat, "Doth now, alas! not once afford recording of a note." Again, in another Dittie, by Thomas Watson, ibid. :
Now birds record with harmonie."
Sir John Hawkins informs me, that to record is a term still used by bird-fanciers, to express the first essays of a bird in singing.
8 O thou that dost inhabit in my breast, Leave not the mansion so long tenantless; Lest, growing ruinous, the building fall,
And leave no memory of what it was!] It is hardly possible to point out four lines in any of the plays of Shakspeare, more remarkable for ease and elegance. STEEVENS.
The image here presented occurs frequently in our author's works. So, in the Comedy of Errors, Act. III. Sc. II. : "Shall love in building grow so ruinate?" See the note on that passage. MALONE. So, in Marlowe's Jew of Malta:
"And leave no memory that e'er I was.” RITSON.