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LITERARY AND HISTORICAL NOTICE. THE fable of this play, (written in 1598,) is taken from a novel of which Boccace is the original author; but it is
inore than probable that our poet read it in a book called The Palace of Pleasure; a collection of novels translated from different authors, by one William Painter, 1566, 4to. Shakspeare has only borrowed from the novel a few leading circumstances in the graver parts of the drama : the comic characters are entirely of his ova formation : one of them, Parolles, a boaster and a coward, is the sheet-anchor of the piece. The plot is Bot sufficiently probable. Some of the scenes are forcibly written, whilst others are impoverished and uninteresting. The moral of the play may be correctly ascertained from Dr. Johnson's estimate of the character of Bertram : "I cannot reconcile my heart to Bertram ; a man noble without generosity, and young without truth; who rearries Helena as a coward, and leaves her as a profligate : when she is dead, by his unkindness, meaks home to a second marriage, is accused by a woman whom he has wronged, defends himself by falsehood, and is dismissed to happiness."
DRAMATIS PERSONE. KING OF FRANCE.
COUNTESS OP Ror'sILLON, Mother to Bertram. DUKE OF FLORENCE.
HELENA, a Gentlewoman protected by the BERTRAN, Count of Rousillon.
Countess. LAFEU, an old Lord.
An Old Widow of Florence. PAROLLES, a follower of Bertram.
DIANA, Daughter to the W'idow.
Lords, attending on the King ; Officers, Sol. A PACE.
diers, fc. French and Florentine. SCENE-Partly in France, and partly in Tuscany.
} Serinomes to the Countess of Rou
skill was almost as great as bis honesty ; had it
stretched so far, it would have made nature imSCENE 1.-Rousillon.-A Room in the mortal, and death should have play for lack of Countess' Palace.
work. ''Would, for the king's sake, he were live Enter BERTRAX, the COUNTESS of ROUSILLON, disease.
ing! I think, it would be the death of the king's HELENA, and LaFEU, in mourning.
Laj. How called you the man you speak of, round. In delivering my son from me, I bury a madam? second busband.
Count. He was famous, Sir, in bis profession, Ber. And I, in going, madam, werp o'er my and it was his great right to be so : Gerard de fatuer's death anew : bit I must attend bis ma- Narbon. jesty's command, to whom I am now in ward, Laj. He was excellent, indeed, madam ; the wermore in subjection.
king very lately spoke of him adminngly, and Luf. You shall find of the king a husband, mourningly : he was skilful enough to bave madam ;--you, Sir, a father : He that so generally lived still, if knowledge could be set up agarust us at all times good, must of necessity bold his mortality. virtue to you; whose worthiness would stir it up Ber. What is it, my good lord, the king lan
bere it wanted, rather than lack it where there guishes of ? is such abundance.
Laj. A fistula, my lord. Count. What hope is there of his majesty's Ber. I beard not of it before. amendment ?
Laf. I would, it were not notorious.-llas laj. He hath abandoned his physicians, ma- this gentlewoman the daughter of Gerard de Hin; ander whose practices he hath persecuted Narbon ? tame with hope ; and finds no other advantage Count. His sole child, my lord : and be. ta tbe process but only the losing of hope by queathed to my overlooking. i have those hopes
of her good, that her education promisco : her Count. This young gentlewoman had a father, dispositions she inherits, which makes fair Oh! that had! | bow sad a passage 'tis 1) whose gitis fairer : for where an unclean mind carries
virtuous qualities, there coinmnendatiuns • The heirs of great fortudes were always the king's with pity, they are virtues and traitors too; iu • The countest reerllerts hero en loss of husband, bdobeeresbew bearily had passes through her mind. Qualities of good breeding and eruduon.
Ans. To-day, my lord; and for three months Oli before,
That i (No interim, not a minute's vacancy,)
Fear Both day and night did we keep company. Be the Enter Olivia and Attendants.
As go Duke. Here comes the countess : now heaven
walks on earth. But for thee, fellow, fellow, thy words are madness :
Father Three months this youth hath tended ujion me; Here L But more of that anou.-----Take bim aside. To kec Oli. What would my lord, but that he may Reveal not have,
Hath Wherein Olivia may geem serviceable ?
Pri Cesario, yon do not keep promise with me. Contin Vio. Madam?
Atleste Duke. Gracious Olivia,-
Stren Oli. What do you say, Cesario ? ---Good my | And al lord,
Seal'd Vio, My lord would speak, my duty hushes Since
ine. Oli, If it be aught to the old tune, my lord,
I have it is as fat and fulsome to mine ear,
Duk As howling after music. Duke. Still so cruel ?
When Oli. Sull so constant, lord.
Or wil Duke. What! to perverseness? you uncivil That i lady,
Farewe To wbose ingrate and unauspicious altars
Wbere My soul the faithfull' st offerings bath breath'd Vio out,
Oli. That e'er devotion tender'd! What sball I do! Hold Oli. Even what it please my lord, tbat shall
become him. Duke. Why should I not, had the beart to Like to the Egyptian thief, at point of deatb, Sir Kin what I love; a savage jealousy,
send o That sometime savours nohty ?—But hear me oli. this:
Sir Since yon to non-regardance cast my faith, has gis And that I partly know the instruinent
the lov 'That screws me from my true place in your forty p favour,
11. Live you, the marble-breasted tyrant, still;
Sir But this your minion, whom, I know, you rio : w
love, And whom, by beaven, I swear,
Sir Him will I tear out of that cruel eye,'
broke 1 Where be sits crowned in bis master's spite. I was Come bay with me; my thoughts are ripe in
Vio. mischief ;
you : I'll sacrifice the lamb that I do love,
cause; To spite a raven's heart within a dove.
(Going. Sir l'io. And I, most jocund, apt, and willingly,
bave h To do you rest, a thousand deaths would die.
[Following Oli. Where goes Cesarios
Entei Vio. After him I love, More than I love these eyes, more than my Here lire.
more : More, by all mores, than e'er I shall love wise ; would If I do feign, you witnesses abore,
did. Punish my life, for tainting of my love !
there's Oli. Kast thou forgot thyself! Is it so long !
geon, Call forth the holy father.
Clo. [Exit an Attendant, Duke. Come away.
Sir Oli, Whither my lord 3-Cesario, husbaud,
Oli. Duke. Husband ?
bavoc Oli. Ay, husband ; Can he that deny ?
Sir Duke. Her husband, sirrah?
we'!!! V'io. No, my lord, not l.
Sir • Dull, gross. + Thyanis, a native of Memphis. It was customary with these barbariaus, when in imminent danger, to Will those whose company they wished in the other $ The world.
Hel. That I wish well.—Tis pity
| Lord. His love and wisdom," Par. What's pity ?
Approv'd so to your majesty, may plead Hel. That wishing well had not a body in't, For amplest credence. Wbich might be felt : that we, the poorer bory, King. He hath arm'd our answer, Whose baser stars do shut us up in wishes, And Florence is denied before he comes : Migbt with effects of the follow our friends, Yet, for our gentlemen, that mean to see And show what we alone must think; which The Tuscan sei vice, freely bave they leave Returus us thanks.
(never To stand on either part. Enter a PAGE.
2 Lord. It may well serve
A nursery to our gentry, who are sick
(Enit PAGE. King. What's he comes bere?
Enter BERTRAM, LaFeu, and PAROLLES. Hel. Monsieur Parolles, you were born under 1 Lord. It is the count Rousillon, my good a charitable star.
(lord, Par. Under Mars, I.
King. Youth, thou bear'st thy father's face ; Hel. I especially think, under Mars.
Frank nature, rather curious than in baste, Par. Why under Mars?
Hath well compos'd thee. Thy father's moral Hel. The wars have so kept you under, that
parts you must needs be born under Mars.
May'st thou inherit too! Welcome to Paris. Par. When be was predominant.
Ber. My thanks and duty are your majesty's. Hel. When he was retrograde, I think, rather. King. I would I bad that corporal soundness Par. Why think you so ?
now, Hel. You go so much backward, when you As wben thy father, and myself, in friendship figbt.
First tried our soldiership ! He did look far Par. That's for advantage.
Into the service of the time, and was Hel. So is running away, when fear proposes Discipled of the bravest : be lasted long; the safety : But the composition, that your va. But on us both did hagyish age steal on, lour and fear makes in you, is a virtue of a good and wore us out of act. It much repairs • me wing, and I like the wear well.
To talk of your good father: In his youtb Par. I am so full of businesses, I cannot answer He had the wit, wbich I can well observe thee acutely : I will return perfect courtier ; in To-day in our young lords ; but they may jest, the wbieh, my instruction shall serve to natur. Till their own scorn return to them unnoted, alize thee, so thou wilt be capable + of a cour. Ere they can hide their levity in honour. tier's counsel, and understand what advice shall so like a courtier, contempt not bitterness thrust upon thee ; else thou diest in thine und Were in his pride or sharpuess; if they were, thankfulness, and thine ignorance makes thee His equal bad awak'd them; and his honour, away : farewell. When thou bast leisure, say Clock to itself, knew the true toinute when thy prayers; when thou hast none, remember Exception bid bin speak, and, at this time, thy friends : get thee a good husband, and use His tongue obey'd his + band : wbo were below him as be uses thee : so farewell.
[Exit. He used as creatures of artother place ; Hel. Our remedies oft in ourselves do lie, And bow'd his eminent top to their low rauks, Which we ascribe to heaven : the fated sky Making them proud of bis humility, Gives us free scope ; oniy, doth backward pull In their poor praise he humbled : Such a man Our slow designs, when we ourselves are dull. Might be a copy to these younger times; What power is it, which mounts my love 80 Which, follow'd well, would demonstrate them bigb; But goers backward.
(now That makes me see, and cannot feed mine eye ? Ber. His good remembrance, Sir, The mightiest space in fortune nature brings Lies richer in your thoughts, than on his tomb; To join like likes, and kiss like native things. I So in approof I lives not bis epitaph, Impossible be strange attempts, to those
As in your royal speech. That weigh their pains in sense ; and do sup- King. 'Would, I were with him! He would pose
always say, what bath been cannot be : Who ever stiove (Metlinks, I hear bim now ; his plausive words To sbow her merit, that did miss her love? He scatter'd not in ears, but grafted them, The king's disease---my project may deceive me. To grow there, and to bear,)-Let me not live, Bat my intents are fix'd, and will not leave me. Thus his good inelancholy oft began,
[Erit. On the catastrophe and beel of pastime,
Wheu it was out,-Let me not live, quoth he, SCENE II.--Paris.--A Room in the King's After my flame lacks oil, to be the snuff Palace.
Of younger spirits, whose apprehensive senses
All but neu things disdain ; whose judgments Flourish of Cornets. Enter the KING OF
are FRANCE, with lelters; LORDS and others Mere fathers of their garments ; $ whose con. attending.
Expire before their fashions :--This he wish'd. King. The Florentines and Senoys are by 1, after him, do after bim wish too, the ears ;
Since I nor wax nor honey can bring home,
To give some labourers room.
2 Lord. You are lov'd, Sir;
first. A certainty, rouch'd from our cousin Austria, King. I fill a place, ( know't. - How long is't, With caution, that the Florentine will move us
Ber. Some six months since, my lord.
King. If he were living, I would try him • 1.e. And show by roalities what we now mast only
• To repair here signifies to renovate.
+ This is put for its.
! Approbation The ciuirens of the small republic of which Sienna Who have no other use of their faculues ikisa to in the capital.
i iaveat new inodes of dress.
Oli. Have I, Malvolio ? no. Mal. Lady you bave. Pray you, peruse that greletter ;
upo You must not now deny it is yone hand, Write froin it if you can, in band, or phrase ; the Or say, 'tis not your seal, nor your invention : You can say none of this : Well grant it then, bar And tell me in the modesty of honour,
gage Why you have given me such clear lights of in b
favour : Bade me come smiling, and cross-garter'd to you. you,
02 To put on yellow stockings, and to frown
D Upon Sir Toby, and the lighter people : And, acting this in an obedient hope,
He Why have you suffered me to be imprison'd, Whe Kept in a dark house, visited by the priest, A so And made the most notorious geck, † and gull, of o That e'er invention play'd on? tell me why. We
Oli. Alas! Malvolio, this is not my writing, For Though I confess, much like the cbaracter : But, But, out of question, 'tis Maria's hand.
Orsit And now I do bethink me, it was she First told me thou wast mad; then cam'st in
smiling, And in such forins which here were presuppos'd Clo. Upon thee in the letter. Prythee, be content: This practice bath must shrewdly pass'd upon
thee; But, when we know the grounds and authors
Fab. Good madam, hear me speak;
It is the show and seal of nature's truth, 1 Hel. Then, I confess, Where lore's strong passion is impress'd in Here on my knee, before high heaven and yon, youth :
That before you, and next unto high heaven, By our remembrances of days foregone,
I love you son : Such were our faults ;-or then we thought My friends were poor, but honest; so's my them nolle.
That be is lov'd of me: I follow him not
By any token of presumptuous suit;
Nor would I bave bim, till I do deserve him ; Hel. Mine honourable mistress.
Yet never know how that desert should be. Count. Nay, a mother ;
I know I love in vain, strive against hope : Why not a mother? When I said a mother, Yet, in this captious and intenible sieve, Methought you saw a serpent: What's a mo. I still pour in the waters of my love, ther,
And lack not to lose still : thus Indian-like, That you start at it? I say, I am your mother; Religious in mine error, I adore, And put you in the catalogue of those
The sun, that looks upon his worshipper That were enwombed mine : 'Tis often seen, But knows of him no more. My dearest ma. Adoption strives with nature ; and choice breeds
dam, A native slip to us from foreign seeds!
Let not your bate encounter with my love, You ne'er oppress'd me with a mother's groan, For loving where you do: but, if yoursell, Yet I express to you a mother's care:
Whose aged honour cites a virtuous youth, God's mercy, maiden ! does it curd thy blood, Did ever, in so true a lame of liking, To say, I am thy mother? What's the matter, Wish chastely, and love deaily, that your Dian That this distemper'd messenger of wet,
Was both herself and love it obl then give The many-colour'd Iris, rounds thine eye?
pity Why?--tbat you are my daughter?
To her, whose state is such, that cannot choose Hel. Tbat I am not.
But lend and give, where she is sure to lose : Count. I say, I am your mother.
That seeks not to find that her search implies, Hel. Pardon, madam ;
But, riddle-like, lives sweetly where she dies. The count Rousillon cannot be my brother. Count. Had you not lately an intent, sperk I am from humble, he from honour'd naine ;
truly, No note upou my parents, bis all noble :
To go to Paris 1 My master, my dear lord he is ; and I
Hel. Madain, I had. His servant live, and will bis vassal die :
Count. Wherefore ? tell true. He must not be my brother.
Hel. I will tell truth : by grace itself, I Count. Nor I your mother?
swear. Hel. You are my mother, madam; 'Would You know my father left me some prescripyou were
tions (So that my lord, your son, were not my of rare and prov'd effects, such as bis reading, brother,)
And manifest experience, had collected Indeed, my mother !-or were you both our For general sovereignty ; and that he will'd me mothers,
In heedfullest reservation to bestow them,
To cure the desperate languisbes, wbereof
Count. This was your motive
Hel, My lord, your son made me to think of Tbe unstery of your loneliness, and find
this ; Your salt tears' head. Now to all sense 'tis Else Paris, and the medicine, and the king, gross,
Had, from the conversation of my thoughts, You love my son ; invention is ashamid,
Haply, been absent then. Against the proclamation of thy passion,
Count. But tbink you, Helen, To say thou dost not : therefore tell me true ; If you should tender your supposed aid, Bot tell me then, ’lis so :-for, look, thy cheeks He would receive it? He and bis pbysicians Cooless it, one to the other; and thine eyes Art of a mind; be, that they cannot help him, See it so grossly shown in thy behaviours,
They, that they cannot help : How shall they That in their kind ý they speak it : only sin
credit And hellish obstitacy tie thy tongue,
A poor unlearned virgin, when the schools, That u uth should be suspected : Speak, is't so ? Embowell'd of their doctrine, ø have left off if it be so, you have wound a goodly clue ;
The danger to itself?
More than my father's skill, wbich was the To tell me truly.
greatest Hel. Good madam, pardon me!
of his profession, that his good receipt Count. Do you love my son ?
Sball, for my legacy, be sanctifed Htel. Your pardon, noble mistress!
By the luckiest stars in heaven : and, would Count. Love you my son 3
your bonour Hel. Do not you love him, madam?
Bat give me leave to try success, I'd venture Count. Go not about ; my love bath in't a Tbe well-lost life of mine on his grace's cure,
bond, Whereof the world takes note : come, come, dis- By such a day and hour.
Count. Dost thou believe it? close
Hel. Ay, madan, knowingly. The state of your affection ; for your passions
Count. Why, Helen, thou shalt have my leave Have to the full appeach'a.
• Le l erre as much for: I wish it equally.
The source, the cause of your grief,
• 1. e. Whose respectable conduct in age proves that you were no less virtuous when young. + le. Venus.
* Receipts in which preater virtues were enclosed to an appeared.
$ Exhausted of their skill.