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DRO. S. [within] Mome, malt-horse, capon, coxcomb, idiot, patch?!
Either get thee from the door, or sit down at the hatch:
Dost thou conjure for wenches, that thou call'st for such store,
When one is one too many? Go, get thee from the door.
DRO. E. What patch is made our porter? My master stays in the street. DRO. S. Let him walk from whence he came, lest he catch cold on's feet.
8 Mome,] A dull stupid blockhead, a stock, a post. This owes its original to the French word Momon, which signifies the gaming at dice in masquerade, the custom and rule of which is, that a strict silence is to be observed: whatever sum one stakes, another covers, but not a word is to be spoken: from hence also comes our word mum! for silence. HAWKINS.
Brutus, forbear the presence." STEEVENS. Sir J. Hawkins would derive mome from the French momon, the challenge at dice made by a mummer or silent person in masquerade. It more probably came to us from one of those similar words that are found in many languages signifying something foolish. Momar is used by Plautus for a fool, whence the French mommeur. The Greeks too had poses and popes in the same sense. DOUCE.
9-patch!] i. e. fool. Alluding to the parti-coloured coats worn by the licensed fools or jesters of the age. So, in Macbeth: what soldiers, patch?"
See notes on A Midsummer-Night's Dream, Act III. Sc. II. and The Merchant of Venice, Act. I. Sc. I. STEEVENS.
Patch may perhaps, in the present instance, mean fool, though it is doubtful; but in the three instances referred to by Mr. Steevens-that in Macbeth; "a crew of patches," in A MidsummerNight's Dream; and "the patch is kind enough," in The Merchant of Venice: the word certainly is a contemptuous designation of a mean man, who is sometimes obliged to wear a patched coat. So below: " What patch is made our porter?" MALONE.
ANT. E. Who talks within there? ho, open the door.
DRO. S. Right, sir, I'll tell you when, and you'll tell me wherefore.
ANT. E. Wherefore? for my dinner; I have not din'd to-day.
DRO. S. Nor to-day here you must not; come again, when you may.
ANT. E. What art thou that keep'st me out from the house I owe 1?
DRO. S. The porter for this time, sir, and my name is Dromio.
DRO. E. O villain, thou hast stolen both mine office and my name;
The one ne'er got me credit, the other mickle blame.
If thou had'st been Dromio to-day in my place, Thou would'st have chang'd thy face for a name, or thy name for an ass.
LUCE. [within] What a coil is there! Dromio, who are those at the gate? DRO. E. Let my master in, Luce. LUCE. Faith no; he comes too late; And so tell your master.
DRO. E. O Lord, I must laugh :— Have at you with a proverb.-Shall I set in my staff? LUCE. Have at you with another: that's,When? can you tell?
DRO. S. If thy name be called Luce; Luce, thou hast answer'd him well.
ANT. E. Do you hear, you minion? you'll let us
in, I hope 2?
I OWE?] i. e. I own, am master of. So, in The Four Prentices of London, 1615:
"Who owes that shield?
I,-and who owes that?" STEEVENS. 2 I HOPE?] A line following this has, I believe, been lost, in
LUCE. I thought to have ask'd you.
DRO. S. And you said, no.
DRO. E. So, come, help; well struck; there was blow for blow.
ANT. E. Thou baggage, let me in.
ANT. E. You'll cry for this, minion, if I beat the door down.
LUCE. What needs all that, and a pair of stocks in the town?
which the speaker threatened Luce with the corporal correction of a rope, which might have furnished the rhyme now wanting. In a subsequent scene he puts the threat which I imagine was made here into execution, by ordering Dromio to go and buy a rope's-end, adding
that will I bestow,
Among my wife and her confederates."
Mr. Theobald, and all the subsequent editors, read, without any authority, I trow; for the purpose of making out a triplet : but that word and hope were not likely to be confounded by either a transcriber or a compositor. MALONE.
The text, I believe, is right, "I expect you'll let us in." To hope in ancient language has sometimes that signification. So, in Antony and Cleopatra :
I cannot hope,
"Cæsar and Antony shall well greet together." Again, in Chaucer's River Tale, v. 4027:
“Our manciple, I hope, he will be dead." STEEVENS. Mr. Steevens seems not to have observed the force of the remark which he intended to refute. He, like another editor, was contented with the corrupted reading trow, till the true one was pointed out, to which he now wishes to affix a possible but an uncommon meaning. To this I have no objection; though the word hope may here very well be understood in its ordinary signification. But my remark was, that a line was probably lost; and this remark was manifestly founded on the circumstance, that hope had here no corresponding rhyme, and that all the rest of this dialogue is in rhyme. Whatever therefore may be the meaning of the word hope, it does not in any way affect the truth of this observation. MALONE.
ADR. [within] Who is that at the door, that keeps all this noise?
DRO. S. By my troth, your town is troubled with unruly boys.
ANT. E. Are you there, wife? you might have come before.
ADR. Your wife, sir knave! go get you from the door.
DRO. E. If you went in pain, master, this knave would go sore.
ANG. Here is neither cheer, sir, nor welcome ; we would fain have either.
BAL. In debating which was best, we shall part with neither 3.
DRO. E. They stand at the door, master; bid them welcome hither.
ANT. E. There is something in the wind, that we cannot get in.
DRO. E. You would say so, master, if your garments were thin.
Your cake here is warm within; you stand here in the cold:
It would make a man mad as a buck, to be so bought and sold *.
3 we shall PART with neither.] In our old language, to part signified to have part. See Chaucer, Cant. Tales, ver. 9504: "That no wight with his blisse parten shall." The French use partir in the same sense. TYRWHITT.
Tyrwhitt mistakes the sense of this passage. To part does not signify to share or divide, but to depart or go away; and Balthazar means to say, that whilst debating which is best, they should go away without either. M. MASON.
+-bought and sold.] This is a proverbial phrase. "To be bought and sold in a company." See Ray's Collection, p. 179, edit. 1737. STEEVENS.
So, in K. Richard III. :
Jocky of Norfolk, be not so bold,
"Diccon, thy master, is bought and sold."
The meaning of this proverbial sentence is, that the person to
ANT. E. Go, fetch me something, I'll break ope the gate.
DRO. S. Break any breaking here, and I'll break your knave's pate.
DRO. E. A man may break a word with you, sir; and words are but wind;
Ay, and break it in your face, so he break it not behind.
DRO. S. It seems, thou wantest breaking; Out upon thee, hind!
DRO. E. Here's too much, out upon thee! I pray thee, let me in.
DRO. S. Ay, when fowls have no feathers, and fish have no fin.
ANT. E. Well, I'll break in; Go borrow me a
DRO. E. A crow without feather; master, mean you so ?
For a fish without a fin, there's a fowl without a feather:
If a crow help us in, sirrah, we'll pluck a crow together".
ANT. E. Go, get thee gone, fetch me an iron
BAL. Have patience, sir; O, let it not be so;
whom it is applied is deluded, and over-reached by foul and secret practices. MALONE.
5 BREAK any BREAKING here,] So, in King Richard II. :
"Grace me no grace, nor uncle me no uncles." MALONE. 6 — we'll pluck a crow together.] We find the same quibble on a like occasion in one of the comedies of Plautus.-The children of distinction among the Greeks and Romans had usually birds of different kinds given them for their amusement. This custom Tyndarus in the Captives mentions, and says, that for his part he had tantum upupam. Upupa signifies both a lapwing and a mattock, or some instrument of the same kind, employed to dig stones from the quarries. STEEvens.