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Page 107 (Act V. Scene ii.)

"By all that's holy, he had better starve,

this place becomes thee not."

Than but once think


This proposed by Rowe.

Page 110 (Act V. Scene iii.)

"Let me never hope to see a chine again; and that I would not for a cow, God save her."-God save the cow? The Perkins folio reads: "Let me never hope to see a queen again, and that I would not for a crown, God save her."

Page 114 (Act V. Scene iv.)

"Would I had known no more! but she must die,
She must, the saints must have her; yet a virgin,
A most unspotted lily shall she pass

To the ground, and all the world shall mourn her." On this passage, conjectures have been formed as to the date of the play. Whether these conjectures be in the main true or false, it is evident that, to a certain extent, they are based on a very absurd punctuation. According to the present punctuation, Cranmer laments his foreknowledge that the infant Elizabeth must one day die! Read with Mr Dyce:

"Would I had known no more! but she must die
(She must, the saints must have her) yet a virgin;
A most unspotted lily shall she pass

To the ground, and all the world shall mourn her."

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"When I have fought with the men, I will be civil with the maids, and cut off their heads."-It is spelled ciuill in the folio, and is a misprint for cruel, which we find in one of the quartos.

Page 129 (Act I. Scene i.)

"I, measuring his affections by my own

That most are busied when they are most alone-
Pursued my humour."

Such is the reading of the first quarto, which Mr Knight has inserted in the text in defiance of the principle laid down by himself, that we should follow implicitly the "augmented and corrected" editions, not attempting to make up a text by jumbling the earliest sketch with the more finished production. The reading of the folio is this:

"I, measuring his affections by my own,

Which then most sought, where most might not be found,
Being one too many by my weary self,

Pursued my humour."

Page 136 (Act I. Scene ii.)

"Let there be weighed

Your lady's love against some other maid." Should it not be Your lady love? asks Mr Dyce.

Page 146 (Act I. Scene v.)

"If I profane with my unworthiest hand
This holy shrine, the gentle sin is this."

"The gentle fine"-Warburton.

Page 147 (Act I. Scene v.)

Petruchio.-In the "Taming of the Shrew," Mr Knight has properly deviated from the common orthography, and spelled the name Petrucio. See note, vol. ii. page 363. Why he has not done so here, it is difficult to understand.

Page 176 (Act III. Scene ii.)

"Spread thy close curtain, love-performing night!
That Runaway's eyes may wink, and Romeo
Leap to these arms, untalked of, and unseen!"

So every old copy, which both Knight and Collier, on the suggestion of Zachary Jackson, have changed into :

"That, unawares, eyes may wink."

This reading, however, it is certain will never again find a place in the text. The original is allowed to be infinitely preferable, Runaway being a common name for Cupid; but if the text is to be changed at all, the best emendation that has been proposed seems to have been suggested independently to different students of Shakspere. For Runawaye's read Rumoure's. If this reading be accepted, there is peculiar force in the following words: "Untalked of, and unseen!"

Page 177 (Act III. Scene ii.)

I.-The old spelling of the affirmative particle ay-which "bare vowel" it is necessary here to retain.

Page 182 (Act III. Scene iii.)

"This may flies do, when I from this must fly-
(And say'st thou yet, that exile is not death?)-
But Romeo may not, he is banished."

Mr Dyce suggests that the two last lines ought to be transposed.

Page 198 (Act IV. Scene i.)

"In thy best robes uncovered on the bier,
Be borne to burial in thy kindred's grave,

Thou shalt be borne to that same ancient vault,
Where all the kindred of the Capulets lie."

Throughout this play there are many such repetitions of lines, which Mr Knight has judiciously rejected. With regard to one of these instances, he says: "It appears to us that the poet was making experiments upon the margin of the first copy of the change of a word or so; and leaving the manuscript upon the page, without obliterating the original passage, it came to be inserted twice." The very same has happened here. The line printed in italics is merely a various reading of the next two. It is rejected by every editor except Messrs Knight and Collier.

Page 202 (Act IV. Scene iii.)

"Stay, Tybalt, stay!—

Romeo, Romeo, Romeo-here's drink-I drink to thee." Such is the conclusion of the speech in all authoritative editions of this play, after the first; yet all the modern editors, with the exception of Knight and Collier, adopt the reading of the first quarto:

"Romeo, I come! this do I drink to thee."

Mr Collier, however, in retaining the text, seems to hanker after the oldest reading as "preferable;" and Mr Dyce says positively that it ought to be adopted; so that Mr Knight is the solitary champion of the text of the first folio and the corrected quarto. The original and commonly adopted reading is certainly the more dignified and heroic. But the corrected reading of the second quarto and first folio more accords with the terror and excitement to which Juliet has wrought herself. While thus defending the text of Mr Knight, we have to point out, on the suggestion of Mr Dyce, that a stage direction has forced its way into the line, which ought to be printed as follows:

"Romeo, Romeo, Romeo-[Here drinks]-I drink to thee." With this alteration, the excitement is toned down a little.

Page 204 (Act IV. Scene v.)
"I will die,

And leave him all; life leaving, all is death's."

In all the old copies: "Life, living, all is death's," which seems very plain, and not to require correction. "I die, and leave all to death-life and the means of life-all is death's."

Page 210 (Act V. Scene i.)

Rom. "Then be not poor, but break it, and take this.
My poverty, but not my will, consents.





thy poverty, and not thy will."

Pray is the reading of the most authoritative editions. But is it not clearly a misprint for the word which we find in the earliest quarto-pay?

Page 213 (Act V. Scene iii.)

"I do defy thy commiseration."

A strange word to use, and bad metre. In the first quarto, we find conjurations; in the second, the authoritative text, commiration, which in subsequent editions was altered by mistake into commiseration. It was a mere misprint for coniuration-entreaty.


It must be premised, that throughout this play Mr Knight, while rightly taking the folio as the basis of his text, seems not to have given sufficient emphasis to the various readings of the quarto editions. This makes the text of his "Hamlet," as of his "Othello," not so infallible in its authority as the text of the other plays, which is indeed very nearly perfectcertainly the most perfect that has yet been constructed. In the following notes will be mentioned all the more valuable of the variations of the quartos, so that any reader who may be dissatisfied with the text will have at hand the means of correcting it for himself. In most cases, we shall simply bracket the quarto reading under that of the folio.

Page 229 (Act I. Scene i.)

"I think I hear them.-Stand! who is there?"-This is the reading neither of the folio nor of the quartos, and is bad

metre in consequence. The folio reads: "I think I hear them.-Stand! who's there?" The quarto has the more common, but less rapid and forcible reading: "I think I hear them.-Stand, ho! who is there?"

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"By the same (co-mart."

In this, as in the preceding instance, it will be seen how the editors of the folio substituted a more common word of similar spelling, for the more expressive but less known reading of the quartos.

Page 233 (Act I. Scene i.)

"Sharked up a list of



Page 233 (Act I. Scene i.)

"A moth it is to trouble the mind's eye."

Moth is merely the old spelling for mote, and mote the word ought to be spelt, as in all other editions. So Mr Knight spells the very same word in "King John," Act IV. Scene ii.

Page 235 (Act I. Scene i.)

"And then, they say, no spirit (can walk)

dare stir




Page 236 (Act I. Scene ii.)

bearers of this greeting to old Norway."

Page 237 (Act I. Scene ii.)

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Compare the "Tempest" (Act I. Scene ii.): "That vast of


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