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Scene, during a great part of the Play, at Rome; afterwards at
Sardis ; and near Philippi.
SCENE I.Rome. A Street.
1 Cit. Why, Sir, a carpenter.
Mar. Where is thy leather apron, and thy rule :
2 Cit. Truly, Sir, in respect of a fine workman, I am but, as you would say, a cobbler.
Mar. But what trade art thou? Answer me directly. 6. 2 Cit. A trade, Sir, that, I hope, I may use with a safe con
science; which is, indeed, Sir, a mender of bad soles. 7. Mar. What trade, thou knave? thou naughty knave, what trade ? 8. 2 Cit. Nay, I beseech you, Sir, be not out with me : yet if you
be out, Sir, I can mend you. 9. Mar. What mean'st thou by that? Mend thou
fellow? 2 Cit. Why, Sir, cobble you.
Flav. Thou art a cobbler, art thou ? 12. 2 Cit. Truly, Sir, all that I live by is, with the awl: I meddle
with no tradesman's matters, nor women's matters, but with awl. I
am, indeed, Sir, a surgeon to old shoes; when they are in great danger, I recover them. As proper men as ever trod upon neat's leather have gone upon my handiwork.
Flav. But wherefore art not in thy shop to-day? Why dost thou lead these men about the streets ?
2 Cit. Truly, Sir, to wear out their shoes, to get myself into more work. But, indeed, Sir, we make holiday to see Cæsar, and to re
joice in his triumph.
What tributaries follow him to Rome,
And do you now strew flowers in his way,
Run to your houses, fall upon your knees,
That needs must light on this ingratitude.
Assemble all the poor men of your sort ;
will I : Disrobe the images, If you do find them deckt with ceremonies. 17. Mar. May we do so ?
You know, it is the feast of Lupercal. 18. Flav. It is no matter; let no images
Be hung with Cæsar's trophies. I'll about,
[Exeunt Act I, Scene I., etc. The heading here in the original text is :-" Actus Primus. Scoena Prima. Enter Flavius, Murellus, and certaine Commoners over the Stage.” Murellus stands throughout not only in all the Folios,
The but also in the editions of both Rowe and Pope. right name was first inserted by Theobald.
This opening scene may be compared with the first part of that of Coriolanus, to which it bears a strong general resemblance.
1. You ought not walk. The history and explanation of this now disused construction may be best collected from a valuable paper by Dr Guest “ On English Verbs, Substantive and Auxiliary," read before the Philological Society, 13th March, 1846, and printed in their Proceed
ings, II. 223.
"Originally,” says Dr Guest, “the to was prefixed to the gerund, but never to the present infinitive; as, however, the custom gradually prevailed of using the latter in place of the former, the to was more and more frequently prefixed to the infinitive, till it came to be considered as an almost necessary appendage of it. Many idioms, however, had sunk too deeply into the language to admit of alteration; and other phrases, to which the popular ear had been familiarized, long resisted the intrusive particle.” The ancient syntax is still retained in all cases with the auxiliary verbs, as they are called, shall, will, can, may, do, and also with must and let, and oftener than not with bid, dare, hear, make, see, and perhaps some others. Vid. 634. Cause is frequently so used; and so is help, sometimes, -as in Milton's Sonnet to his friend Lawrence :
“ Where shall we sometimes meet, and by the fire
Help waste a sullen day?” But, even since the language may be said to have entered upon the stage of its existence in which it still is, several of the verbs just enumerated as not admitting the to are occasionally found following the common example and taking it; and others, again, which at the present day have completely conformed to the ordinary construction, formerly used now and then to dispense with it. One of Dr Guest's quotations exemplifies both these archaisms ; it is from the portion of The Mirror for Magistrates contributed by John Higgins in 1574 (King Albanact, 16):
" And, though we owe the fall of Troy requite,
Yet let revenge thereof from gods to light.” That is, “Though we ought to requite, yet let revenge light,” as we should now say. Here we have let with the to, and owe (of which ought or owed is the preterite), as in Shakespeare's expression before us, without it. Others of Dr Guest's citations from the same writer
exhibit the auxiliaries may, will, can with the to. And he also produces from Spenser (F. Q., iv. 7. 32),
“Whom when on ground she grovelling saw to roll;” and from Shakespeare (Othello, iv. 2)—
“I durst, my Lord, to wager she is honest.” Other verbs that are found in Shakespeare sometimes construed in the same manner are endure, forbid, intend, vouchsafe; as, “The treason that my haste forbids me show.”
Rich. II., v. 3. “How long within this wood intend you stay?"
Mid. N. Dr., ii. 1. “ Your betters have endured me say my mind.”
Tam. of Shrew, iv. 3. “Most mighty Duke, vouchsafe me speak a word.”
Com. of Er. v. 1. The verb to owe, it may further be observed, is etymologically the same with own. Shakespeare repeatedly has owe where own would be now employed ; as in Iago’s. diabolical self-gratulation (in Othello, iii. 3):
“Not poppy, nor mandragora,
Which thou owed' st yesterday.” The original English word is ágan,—the ag, or radical part, of which is evidently the same with the ex of the Greek čxelv, signifying to hold, to possess, to have for one's property, or what we call one's own. If we suppose the a to have been pronounced broad, as in our modern all, and the 9
to have come to be softened as g final usually is in modern German, ag and owe, unlike as they are to the eye, will be only different ways of spelling, or representing by letters, almost the same vocal utterance. The sound which the vowel originally had is more nearly preserved in the Scotch form of the word, awe. The n which we have in the form own is either merely the common an