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As ours by murder, to make him a king!
Glo. Have done thy charm, thou hateful wither'd hag.
elvish-mark’d,] The common people in Scotland (as I learn from Kelley's proverbs) have still an aversion to those who have any natural defect or redundancy, as thinking them mark'd out for mischief. Steevens.
* An elf, in the language of superstition, is an invisible agent, which delights in injuring every thing endued with life. If a cow or a horse is seized with any sudden illness, it is supposed the animal is elf-shotten, the only remedy for which is to make the animal drink of water in which an elf-stone is placed: This stone is described to be about the size of a pullet's egg, of a fat oval form, and Aies with the swiftness of an arrow to the destined
Thou that wast seal'd in thy nativity
victim, but leaves no visible mark. The elf is also accused of taking on itself the office of acoucheur, and personates the mid. wife so perfectly that the messenger is deceived. The fraud however is discovered by some extraordinary deformity of the child, and the elf bears the blame. This superstition to which our au. 1!:or alludes, is still prevalent in Scotland, and the north of Ire. band. Am. Ed.
- rooting hog!] The expression is fine, alluding (in memory of her young son) to the ravage which hogs make, with the finest Anwers, in gardens; and intimating that Elizabeth was to expect no other treatment for her sons. Warburton
She calls bim hog, as an appellation more contemptoous than boar, as he is elsewhere termed from his ensigns armorial.
Fohnson In The Mirror for Magistrates is the following Complaint of Collingbourne, who was cruelly executed for making a rime:
- For where I meant the king by name of hog,
“ To hide the sense that they so wrongly wrest.” That Lovel was once the common name of a dog may be like. wise known from a passage in The Historie of Jacob and Esau, an interlude, 1568:
“ Then come on at once, take my quiver and my bowe;
“Fette lovell my hounde, and my horne to blowe.” The rhyme for which Collingbourne suffered, was :
“ A cat, a rat, and Lovel the dog,
“Rule all England under a hog." Steevens. The rhyme of Collingbourne is thus preserved in Heywood's History of Edward IV, P. II:
«The cat, the rat, and Lovell our dog,
“ Shall in his trough feed and be fat." The propriety of Dr. Warburton's note, notwithstanding what Dr. Johnson hath subjoined, is fully confirmed by this satire.
persons levelled at by this rhyme were the King, Catesby, Ratcliff, and Lovel, as appears in The Complaint of Collingbourn :
" Catesbye was one whom I called a cat,
Thou slander of thy mother's heavy womb!
I call thee not.
Q. Mar. Why, so I did; but look'd for no reply. 0, let me make the period to my curse.
Glo. 'Tis done by me; and ends in-Margaret.
“The second Ratcliffe, whom I named a rat,
“Wherewith to ryme I cald the king a hog." Malone. 1 The slave of nature,] The expression is strong and noble, and alludes to the ancient custom of masters branding their profli. gate slaves; by which it is insinuated that his misshapen person was the mark that nature had set upon him to stigmatize his ill conditions. Shakspeare expresses the same thought in The Comedy of Errors:
“ He is deformed, crooked, &c.
Stigmatized in making, But as the speaker rises in her resentment, she expresses this contemptuous thought much more openly, and condemns him to a still worse state of slavery:
“Sin, death, and hell, have set their marks on him.” Only, in the first line, her mention of his moral conditions in. sinuates her reflections on his deformity: and, in the last, her mention of his deformity insinuates her reflections on his moral condition: And thus he has taught her to scold in all the elegance of figure. Warburton.
Part of Dr. Warburton's note is confirm'd by a line in our author's Rape of Lucrece, from which it appears he was acquainted with the practice of marking slaves:
“Worse than a slavish wipe, or birth-hour's blot.” Malone. 2 Thoú rag of honour! &c.] This word of contempt is used again in Timon :
“If thou wilt curse, thy father, that poor rag,
“ Must be the subject.” Again, in this play: “ These over-weening rags of France." Steevens.
Q. Mar. Poor painted queen, vain flourish of
for, tune!3 Why strew'st thou sugar on that bottled spider, Whose deadly web ensnareth thee about? Fool, fool! thou whet'st a knife to kill thyself. The day will come, that thou shalt wish for me To help thee curse this pois’nous bunch-back'd toad.
Hast. False-boding woman, end thy frantick curse; Lest, to thy harm, thou move our patience. Q. Mar. Foul shame upon you! you have all mov'd
mine. Riv. Were you well serv’d, you would be taught your
duty. Q. Mar. To serve me well, you all should do me duty, Teach me to be your queen, and you my subjects: O, serve me well, and teach yourselves that duty. Dor. Dispute not with her, she is lunatick. Q. Mar. Peace, master marquis, you are malapert: Your fire-new stamp of honour is scarce current:5 O, that your young nobility could judge, What 'twere to lose it, and be miserable!. They that stand high, have many blasts to shake them; And, if they fall, they dash themselves to pieces.
Glo. Good counsel, marry :-learn it, learn it, marquis. Dor. It touches you, my lord, as much as me.
Glo. Ay, and much more: But I was born so high, Our aiery buildeth in the cedar's top, And dallies with the wind, and scorns the sun.
- flourish of my fortune!] This expression is likewise used by Massinger in The Great Duke of Florence:
I allow these
bottled spider,] A spider is called bottled, because, like other insects, he has a middle slender, and a belly protuberant. Richard's form and venom, made her liken him to a spider.
Fohnson. A bottled spider, is a large, bloated, glossy spider; supposed to contain venom proportionate to its size. The expression occurs again in Act IV:
“That bottled spider, that foul hunch-back’d toad.” Ritsor. s Your fire-new stamp of honour is scarce current
;] Thomas Grey was created Marquis of Dorset, A. D. 1476. Percy. The present scene, as bas been already observed, is in 1477.8.
Q. Mar. And turns the sun to shade ;-alas! alas !-
Buck. Peace, peace, for shame, if not for charity.
Q. Mar. Urge neither charity nor shame to me;
Buck. Have done, have done.
Q. Mar. O princely Buckingham, I kiss thy hand,
Q. Mar. I'll not believe but they ascend the sky,
6 Witness my son, &c.] Her distress cannot prevent her quibbling. It may be here remarked, that the introduction of Margaret in this place, is against all historical evidence. She was ransomed and sent to France soon after Tewksbury fight, and there passed the remainder of her wretched life. Ritson Witness my son.
1.) Thus the quarto of 1598, and the folio. The modern editors, after the quarto of 1612, read Malone.
7 Your aiery buildeth in our aiery's nest :) An aiery is a hawk's or an eagle's nest. So, in Greene's Card of Fancy, 1608 :
“ It is a subtle bird that breeds among the aiery of hawks." Again, in Heywood's Rape of Lucrece, 1630:
“His high-built aiery shall be drown’d in blood.” 8 Sin, death, and hell,] Possibly Milton took from hence the hint of his famous allegory. Blackstone.
Milton might as probably catch the bint from the following passage in Latimer's Sermons, 1584, fol. 79: “Here came in death