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Quick. Nay, sure, he's not in hell; he's in Ar. thur's bosom, if ever man went to Arthur's bosom. 'A made a finer end, and went away, an it had been any christom child ;7 ’a parted even just between twelve and one, e'en at turning o' the tide:8 for af. ter I saw him fumble with the sheets, and play with flowers, and smile upon his fingers' ends, I knew there was but one way; for his nose was as sharp as a pen, and 'a babbled of green fields. How now, sir John? quoth I: what, man! be of good cheer. So 'a cried out-God, God, God! three or four times : now I, to comfort him, bid him, 'a should not think of God; I hoped, there was no need to trouble himself with any such thoughts yet: So, 'a bade me lay more clothes on his feet: I put my hand into the bed, and felt them, and they were as cold as any stone; then I felt to his knees, and so upward, and upward, and all was as cold as any stone.
7 a n it had been any christom child;] i. e. child that has wore the chrysom, or white cloth put on a new baptised child.
8 - turning o' the tide:] It has been a very old opinion, which Mead, de imperio solis, quotes, as if he believed it, that nobody dies but in the time of ebb: half the deaths in London confute the notion ; but we find that it was common among the women of the poet's time. JOHNSON.
9 cold as any stone.] Such is the end of Falstaff, from whom Shakspeare had promised us, in his epilogue to King Henry IV. that we should receive more entertainment. It happened to Shakspeare, as to other writers, to have his imagination crowded with a tumultuary confusion of images, which, while they were yet unsorted and unexamined, seemed sufficient to furnish a long train of incidents, and a new variety of merriment: but which, when he was to produce them to view, shrunk suddenly from him, or could not be accommodated to his general design. That he once designed to have brought Falstaff on the scene again, we know from himself; but whether he could contrive no train of adventures suitable to his character, or could match him with no companions likely to quicken his humour, or could open no new vein of pleasantry, and was afraid to continue the same strain lest it should not find the same reception, he has here for ever discarded him, and made haste to despatch him, perhaps for the same reason for
sulle gulp. M" Quickly. Joa lade me lay more Clothes on his
feet: I put my hand into the bed felt them,
Nym. They say, he cried out of sack.
Boy. Yes, that 'a did; and said, they were devils incarnatę.
Quick. 'A could never abide carnation; 'twas a colour he never liked.
Boy. 'A said once, the devil would have him about women.
Quick. 'A did in some sort, indeed, handle women: but then he was rheumatick;' and talked of the whore of Babylon.
Boy. Do you not remember, 'a saw a flea stick upon Bardolph's nose; and 'a said, it was a black soul burning in hell-fire?
Bard. Well, the fuel is gone, that maintained that fire: that's all the riches I got in his service.
Nym. Shall we shog off the king will be gone from Southampton. Pist. Come, let's away.—My love, give me thy
lips. Look to my chattels, and my moveables: Let senses rule; the word is, Pitch and pay ; Trust none; For oaths are straws, men's faiths are wafer-cakes, And hold-fast is the only dog, my duck;
which Addison killed Sir Roger, that no other hand might attempt to exhibit him.
Let meaner authors learn from this example, that it is dangerou to sell the bear which is yet not hunted; to promise to the publick what they have not written.
This disappointment probably inclined Queen Elizabeth to command the poet to produce him once again, and to show him in love or courtship. This was, indeed, a new source of humour, and produced a new play from the former characters. JOHNSON.
- rheumatick;] This word is elsewhere used by our author for peevish, or splenetick, as scorbutico is in Italian. Mrs. Quickly however probably means lunatick.
Therefore, caveto be thy counsellor.
Boy. And that is but unwholesome food, they say.
[Kissing her. Nym. I cannot kiss, that is the humour of it; but adieu.
Pist. Let housewifery appear ; keep close, I thee command. Quick. Farewell; adieu.
[Exeunt. SCENE IV. France. A Room in the French King's Palace.
Enter the French King attended; the Dauphin,
power upon us;
— clear thy chrystals.] Dry thine eyes.