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for twenty nobles, and when they were in the coun. try, sold the same play to the Lord Admiral's men for as much more? Was not this plain Coneycatching M. G.?" Defence of Coneycatching, 1592.

This note was not merely inserted to expose the craft of authorship, but to show the price which was anciently paid for the copy of a play, and to ascertain the name of the writer of Orlando Furioso, which was not hitherto known. Greene appears to have been the first poet in England who sold the same piece to different people. Voltaire is much belied, if he has not followed his example.

COLLINS. Notwithstanding what has been said by a late editor, I have a copy of the first folio, including Troilus and Cressida. Indeed, as I have just now observed, it was at first either unknown or forgotten. It does not, however, appear in the list of the plays, and is thrust in between the histories and the tragedies without any enumeration of the pages ; except, I think, on one leaf only. It differs entirely from the copy in the second folio.

FARMER. I have consulted eleven copies of the first folio, and Troilus and Cressida is not wanting in any one of them.

STEEVENS.

PROLOGUE.

P PROLOGUE.

LOG

line 2.

18.

The princes orgillous;-] Orgillous, i, e. proud, disdainful. Orgueilleux, Fr. This word is used in the ancient romance of Richard Cæur de Lyon : “ His atyre was orgulous."

STEEVENS -fulfilling bolts,] To fulfil in this place means to fill till there be no room for more. In this sense it is now obsolete. So, in Gower, De Confessione, Amantis, Lib. V. fol. 114 :

“ A lustie m'aide, a' sobre, a meke,

Fulfilled of all curtosie.” Again :

Fulfilled of all unkindship." STEEVENS. To be fulfilled with grace and benediction” is still the language of our Litany. BLACKSTONE,

23. A prologue arm’d, I come here to speak the prologue, and come in armour; not defying the audience, in confidence of either the author's or actors abilities, but merely in a character suited to the subject, in a dress of war, before a warlike play.

JOHNSON. 27. -the vaunt

-] i. c. the avant, what went before.

STEEVENS.

ACT

[blocks in formation]

Line 1.

Mr varlet, —] This word anciently signified a servant or footman to a knight or warrior. Sc, Holinshed, speaking of the battle of Agincourt :

-diverse were releeved by their varlets, and conveied out of the field.” Again, in an ancient epitaph in the church-yard of saint Nicas at Arras :

“ Cy gist Hakin et son varlet,
« Tout di-armè et tout di-pret,

“ Avec son espé et salloche,” &c. STEEVENS. Concerning the word varlet, see Recherches histo, riques sur les cartes a jouer. Lyon, 1757, p. 61.

M. C. T. 6. Will this gear ne'er be mended ?] There is somewhat proverbial in this question, which I likewise meet with in the Interlude of King Darius, 1565: Wyll not yet this gere be amended,

your

sinful acts corrected;" Sreevens.

-fonder than ignorance ;] Fonder, for more childish.

WARBURTON. And skill-less, &c.] Mr. Dryden, in his alteration of this play, has taken this speech as it stands, except that he has changed skill-less to artless, not for the better, because skill-less refers to skill and skilful.

JOHNSON. 15. --must tarry the grinding ] Folio: must needes

MALONE.

Nor

• 10.

12.

tarry, &c.

30. start, or fly off.

Doth lesser blench] To blench is to shrink,

STEEVENS. 33. —when she comes !-When is she thence?] Folio:

Then she comes when she is thence. MALONE, 39.

-(as when the sun doth light a storm)] Milton hath given the same similitude, but more dilated :

“ As when from mountain-tops the dusky clouds -“ Ascending, while the north-wind sleeps, o'er

spread “ Heav'ns cheerful face, the lowering element 66 Scowls o'er the darken’d landscape snow, or

show'r : " If chance the radiant sun with farewel sweet « Extend his ev'ning beam, the fields revive, ". The birds their notes renew, and bleating herds

" Attest their joy, that hill and valley ring." It is not improbable that the short simile of Shak, spere with the subsequent line, “ But sorrow that is couch'd in seeming glad

ness" suggested to the imagination of Milton his most exquisite description

HENLEY. 55. Pour’st in the open ulcer of my heart

Her

eyes, her hair, her cheek, her gait; her voice Handlest in thy discourse :-0 that her hand!

In whose comparison, &c.] There is no reason why Troilus should dwell on Pandarus's handling in his discourse the voice of his mistress, more than her eyes, her hair, &c. as he is made to do by this punca

tuation,

tuation, to say nothing of the harshness of the phrase to handle a voice.

The passage, in my apprehension, ought to be pointed thus :

-Thou answer'st, she is fair;
Pour'st in the open ulcer of my heart,
Her eyes, her hair, her cheek, her gait, her voice;
Handlest, in thy discourse, O that her hand,

In whose comparison all whites are ink, &c. Handlest is here used metaphorically, with an allusion, at the same time, to its literal meaning; and the jingle between hand and handlest is perfectly in our author's manner.

The circumstance itself seems to have strongly im. pressed itself on his mind. Antony cannot endure that the hand of Cleopatra should be touched :

-To let a fellow that will take rewards, “ And say, God quit you, be familiar with

My play- fellow, your hand—this kingly seal And plighter of high hearts!” MALONE. 69. -and spirit of sense

Hard as the palm of ploughman! -] In com parison with Cressid's hand, says he, the spirit of sense, the utmost degree, the most exquisite power of sensibility, which implies a soft hand, since the sense of touching, as Scaliger says in his Exercitations, resides chiefly in the fingers, is hard as the callous and insen, sible palm of the ploughman.

JOHN ON. 70. she has the mends — ] She may mend her complexion by the assistance of cosinetics. JOHNSON.

B

I believe

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