« ПредишнаНапред »
Which had you rather, that the most just law
Isab. Sir, believe this,
Ang. I talk not of your soul; our compell’d lins Stand more for number than accompt.
Isab. How say you?
Ang. Nay, I'll not warrant that; for I can speak
Isab. Please you to do't,
Ang. Pleas’d you to do’t at peril of your soul,
Isab. That I do beg his life, if it be fin,
Ang. Nay, but hear me:
Isab. Let me be ignorant, and in nothing good, But graciously to know I am no better.
Ang. Thus Wisdom withes to appear most bright, When it doch tax it felf: as these black masques Proclaim an en-shield beauty ten times louder, Than beauty could display'd. But mark me, To be received plain, I'll speak more gross; Your brother is to die.
Ang. And his offence is so, as it appears,
Ang. Admit no other way to save his life,
Isab. As much for my poor brother, as my self;
Ang. Then must your brother die.
Ifab. And ’twere the cheaper way; Better it were, a brother dy'd at once; Than that a sister, by redeeming him, Should die for ever.
Ang. Were not you then as cruel as the Sentence,
Isab. An ignominious ransom, and free pardon,
Ang. You seem'd of late to make the law a tyrant,
Isab. Oh pardon me, my lord ; it oft falls out, To have what we would have, we speak not what we
Ang. We are all frail.
If (13) Else let my Brother dye,
If not a Feodary, but only He, &c.] This is so obscure a Pasage, but fo fine in its Application, that it deserves to be explain'd. A Feo.
If not a feodary, but only he,
Ang. Nay, women are frail too.
Ifab. Ay, as the glasses where they view themselves;
Ang. I think it well;
Ijab. I have no tongue but one; gentle my lord,
Ang. Plainly conceive, I love yoų.
Isab. My brother did love Juliet ;
Ang. He shall not, Isabel, if you give me love.
Ifab. I know, your virtue hath a licence in't,
Ang. Believe me, on mine Honour,
Isab. Ha! little Honour to be much believ'd, dary was One, that, in the Times of Vaffalage, held Lands of the chief Lord, under the Tenure of paying Rent and Service: which Tenures were call's Feuda amongst the Goths. This being premised, let us come to a Paraphrafe of our Author's Words: “ We are all frail, says An
gelo; yes, replies Isabella; if all Mankind were not Feodaries, who
owe what they have to this Tenure of Imbecillity, and who fucceed “ each other by the same Tenure, as well as my Brother, I would give " him up.” And the comparing Mankind, (who, according to some Divines, lye under the weight of Original Sin,) to a Feodary, who owes Suit and Service to his Lord, is, I think, one of the most beautiful Allusions imaginable.
And most pernicious purpose! seeming, seeming !
Ang. Who will believe thee, Isabel?
[Exit. Isab. To whom should I complain? did I tell this, Who would believe me? O most perilous mouchs, That bear in them one and the self-fame tongue, Either of condemnation or approof; Bidding the Law make curtsie to their Will ; Hooking both right and wrong to th' apperite, To follow, as it draws. I'll to my brother. Tho' he hath fall'n by prompture of the blood, Yet hath he in him such a mind of honour, That had he twenty heads to tender down On twenty bloody blocks, he'd yield them up; Before his fifter should her body stoop To fuch abhorr'd pollution. Then, Isabel, live, chaste; and, brother, dieg More than our brother is our chastity. I'll tell him yet of Angelo's request; And fit his mind to death, for his soul's Rest. (Exit.
A C T III.
Enter Duke, Claudio, and Provost.
DU K E.
Claud. The miserable have no other medicine,
par'd to die.
Reason thus with Life;
That none but Fools would keep.) But this. Reading is not only contrary to all Sense and Reason; but to the Drift of this moral Dif course.' The Duke, in his assum'd Character of a Friar, is endeavour. ing to instill into the condemn'd Prisoner a Relignation of Mind to his Sentence; but the Sense of the Lines, in this Reading, is a direct Per. swafive to Suicide! I make no Doubt, but the Poet wrote,
That none but Fools would reck. i. e. care for, be anxious about, regret the Loss of.
Mr. Warburton. And the Word is very frequent with our Author. 2 Gent. of Verona ;
Recking as little what betideth me,
As much I wish all Good befortune you. And Hanlet;
Himself the primrose Path of Dalliance treads,
And recks not his own Reed. Et alibi paflim.