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202. Let not our looks put on our purposes. - Put on such expression as would betray our purposes. Compare the exhortation of the strong-minded wife of Macbeth to her husband (Macbeth, i, 5) :
To beguile the time, Look like the time: bear welcome in your eye, Your hand, your tongue; look like the innocent flower,
But be the serpent under it. But the sentiment takes its boldest form from the lips of Macbeth himself in the first fervor of his weakness exalted into determined wickedness (i. 7) :
Away, and mock the time with fairest show:
202. Formal constancy. - Constancy in outward form, or aspect; the appearance, at any rate, of perfect freedom from anxiety and the weight of our great design. The original stage direction is, Exeunt. Manet Brutus."
202. The heavy honey-dew of slumber. - This is the correction by Mr. Collier's MS. annotator of the old reading, “ the honey-heavy dew.” I cannot doubt that it gives us what Shakespeare wrote. compound," as Mr. Collier remarks, “ unquestionably is not honey-heavy, but honey-dew, a well-known glutinous deposit upon the leaves of trees, etc. ; the compositor was guilty of a transposition.” We have a trace, it might be added, of some confusion or indistinctness in the manuscript, perhaps occasioned by an interlineation, and of the perplexity of the compositor, in the strange manner in which in the First Folio the dew also, as well as the heavy, is attached by a hyphen ; thus, “ the hony-heauy-Dew.” [Hudson follows Collier. Dyce reads “ honey heavy dew," that is, as he explains it,“ honeyed and heavy." White has "honey-heavy dew," etc., " that is, slum
ber as refreshing as dew, and whose heaviness is sweet.” It may be noted in support of Collier's emendation, that in Titus Andronicus, iii. 1, Shakespeare has the expression “ honey-dew:” —
Upon a gathered lily almost withered.] 202. Thou hast no figures, etc. - Pictures created by imagination or apprehension. So in The Merry Wives of Windsor, iv. 2, Mrs. Page, to Mrs. Ford's 66 Shall we tell our husbands how we have served him (Falstaff)?” replies, “ Yes, by all means; if it be but to scrape the figures out of your husband's brains.”
205. You've ungently. — All the Folios have r have; which, however, was perhaps not pronounced differently from the modern elision adopted in the present text. As that elision is still common, it seems unnecessary to substitute the full You have, as most of the recent editors have done.
205. Stole from my bed. - See 46.
205. Which sometime hath his hour. —That is, its hour. See 54.
205. Wafture of your hand. - Wafter is the form of the word in all the Folios.
205. Fearing to strengthen that impatience. For the prosody of such lines see the note on 246.
205. An effect of humour. – Humor is the peculiar mood, or caprice, of the moment; a state of mind opposed or exceptional to the general disposition and character.
205. As it hath much prevailed on your condition. Condition is the general temper or state of mind. We still say ill-conditioned, for ill-tempered. Thus, in The Merchant of Venice, i. 2, Portia makes the supposition that her suitor the black Prince of Morocco, although his complexion be that of a devil, may have “the condition of a saint.” Note how vividly the strong feeling from which Portia speaks is expressed by her repetition of the much- 6 could it work so much As it hath much prevailed.”
205. Dear my lord. - So, in Romeo and Juliet, iii. 5, Juliet implores her mother, “O, sweet my mother, cast me not away!
» For the principle upon which this form of expression is to be explained, see the note on 89. Though now disused in English, it corresponds exactly to the French Cher Monsieur. The personal pronoun in such phrases has become absorbed in the noun to which it is prefixed, and its proper or separate import is not thought of. A remarkable instance, in another form of construction, of how completely the pronoun in such established modes of speech was formerly apt to be overlooked, or treated as non-significant, occurs in our common version of the Bible, where, in 1 King's xviii. 7, we have, “ And as Obadiah was in the way, behold, Elijah met him: and he knew him, and fell on his face, and said, Art thou that my lord Elijah ?” Still more extraordinary is what we have in Troilus and Cressida, v. 2, where (Ulysses having also addressed Troilus, “Nay, good my lord, go off”) Cressida exclaims to herself,
Ah! poor our sex! this fault in us I find,
The error of our eye directs our mind. 209. [Is Brutus sick ?
- White remarks, sick, the correct English adjective to express all degrees of suffering from disease, and which is universally used in the Bible and by Shakespeare, the Englishman of Great Britain has poorly substituted the adverb ill.” Compare Gen. xlviii. 1 ; 1 Sam. xix. 14; xxx. 13, etc.]
209. Is it physical ? - Medicinal.
209. Of the dank morning. — The Second Folio changes dank into dark.
209. To add unto his sickness. - His is misprinted hit in the First Folio. So in Macbeth, i. 5, we have, in the same original text, “ the effect and hit," apparently for “the effect and it” (the purpose), - although the misprint, if it be one, is repeated in the Second Folio, and is, as far as we can gather from Mr. Collier, left uncorrected by his MS. annotator. It is even defended by Tieck as probably the true reading. It cannot, at any rate, be received as merely a different way of spelling it, deliberately adopted in this instance and nowhere else throughout the volume: such a view of the matter is the very Quixotism of the belief in the immaculate purity of the old text. 209. You have some sick offence.
Some pain, or grief, that makes
sick. 209. By the right and virtue of my place. — By the right that belongs to, and (as we now say) in virtue of (that is, by the power or natural prerogative of) my place (as your wife). The old spelling of the English word, and that which it has here in the First Folio, is, vertue, as we still have it in the French vertu.
209. I charm you. — Charm (or charme) is the reading of all the old printed copies. Pope substituted charge, which was adopted also by Hanmer. It must be confessed that the only instance which has been referred to in support of charm is not satisfactory. It is adduced by Steevens from Cymbeline, i. 7, where Iachimo says to Imogen,
'Tis your graces
Charms this report out. This is merely the common application of the verb to charm in the sense of to produce any kind of effect as it were by incantation. Charm is from carmen, as incantation or enchantment is from cano. In the passage before us, I charm you (if such be the reading) must mean I adjure or conjure you. Spenser uses charm with a meaning which it does not now retain ; as when he says in his Shepherd's Kalendar (October, 118), “Here we our slender pipes may safely charm," and, in the beginning of his Colin Clout's Come Home Again, speaks of "charming his oaten pipe unto his peers,” that is, playing or modulating (not uttering musical sounds, as explained by Nares, but making to utter them). Still more peculiar is the application of the word by Marvel in a short poem entitled “ The Picture of T. C. in a prospect of flowers :
Meanwhile, whilst every verdant thing
Itself does at thy beauty charm ;: that is, apparently, delights itself in contemplating thy beauty. We do not .now use this verb thus reflectively at all. There seems, however, to have been formerly a latitude in the application of it which may possibly have extended to such a sense as that which must be assigned to it if it was really the word here employed by Portia. — Two stage directions are added here by Mr. Collier's MS. annotator : “Kneeling," where Portia says, "Upon my knees I charm you ;” and “Raising her," at 210.
211. But, as it were, in sort, or limitation. Only in a manner, in a degree, in some qualified or limited sense. We still say in a sort.