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Mor. The lives of all your loving complices Lean on your health ; the which, if you give o'er To stormy passion, must perforce decay. i You cast the event of war, my noble lord, And summ'd the account of chance, before you
I said, Let us make head. It was your presurmise, That, in the dole of blows ° your son might drop : You knew, he walk'd o'er perils, on an edge, More likely to fall in, than to get o'er": You were advis'd, his flesh was capable ?
8 You cast the event of war, &c.] The fourteen lines, from hence to Bardolph's next speech, are not to be found in the first editions, till that in the folio of 1623. A very great number of other lines in this play were inserted after the first edition in like manner, but of such spirit and mastery generally, that the insertions are plainly by Shakspeare himself. Pope.
To this note I have nothing to add, but that the editor speaks of more editions than I believe him to have seen, there having been but one edition yet discovered by me that precedes the first folio. Johnson.
Dr. Johnson was perhaps not altogether correct. See the Preliminary Remarks. Boswell.
I - in the DOLE of blows -] The dole of blows is the distribution of blows. Dole originally signified the portion of alms (consisting either of meat or money) that was given away at the door of a nobleman. Steevens. See vol. xvi. p. 248, n. 1. Malone.
You knew, he walk'd o'er perils, on an edge,
More likely to fall in, than to get o’er :] So, in King Henry IV. Part I. :
“ As full of peril and adventurous spirit,
“ On the unsteadfast footing of a spear.” MALONE. 2 You were advis’, his flesh was capable -] i. e. you knew. So, in The Two Gentlemen of Verona :
“ How shall I doat on her with more advice -." i. e. on further knowledge. MALONE.
Thus also, Thomas Twyne, the continuator of Phaer's translation of Virgil, 1584, for haud inscius, has advis'd : “ He spake : and straight the sword advisde into his throat
receives.” Steevens. It is still used in mercantile correspondente. TALBOT.
Of wounds and scars; and that his forward spirit
BARD. We all, that are engaged to this loss,
* Quartos, dare.
3 We all, that are engaged to this loss,] We have a similar phraseology in the preceding play:
“ Hath a more worthy interest to the state,
“ Than thou the shadow of succession." Malone. 4 The gentle, &c.] These one-and-twenty lines were added since the first edition. JOHNSON.
This and the following twenty lines are not found in the quarto, 1600, either from some inadvertence of the transcriber or compositor, or from the printer not having been able to procure a perfect copy. They first appeared in the folio, 1623; but it is manifest that they were written at the same time with the rest of the play, Northumberland's answer referring to them. MALONE.
Seem'd on our side, but, for their spirits and souls,
Enter Sir John FALSTAFF, with his Page bearing
his Sword and Buckler. FAL. Sirrah, you giant, what says the doctor to my water??
s Tells them, he doth BESTRIDE a bleeding land, ] That is, stands over his country to defend her as she lies bleeding on the ground. So Falstaff before says to the Prince, “ Hal, if thou see me down in the battle, and bestride me, so ; it is an office of friendship.” Johnson.
6 And MORE, and less,] More and less mean greater and less. So, in Macbeth : “ Both more and less have given him the revolt.”
STEEVENS. 7 - what says the doctor to my WATER?] The method of PAGE. He said, sir, the water itself was a good healthy water: but for the party that owed it, he might have more diseases than he knew for.
FAL. Men of all sorts take a pride to gird at me 8 : The brain of this foolish-compounded clay, man, is not able to vent any thing that tends to laughter, more than I invent, or is invented on me: I am not only witty in myself, but the cause that wit is in other men. I do here walk before thee, like a sow, that hath overwhelmed all her litter but one. If the prince put thee into my service for
investigating diseases by the inspection of urine only, was once so much the fashion, that Linacre, the founder of the College of Physicians, formed a statute to restrain apothecaries from carrying the water of their patients to a doctor, and afterwards giving medicines, in consequence of the opinions they received concerning it. This statute was, soon after, followed by another, which forbade the doctors themselves to pronounce on any disorder from such an uncertain diagnostic.
John Day, the author of a comedy called Law Tricks, or Who would have thought it ? 1608, describes an apothecary thus : " — his house is set round with patients twice or thrice a day, and because they'll be sure not to want drink, every one brings · his own water in an urinal with him.” Again, in Beaumont and Fletcher's Scornful Lady :
“ I'll make her cry so much, that the physician,
" To find the cause by." It will scarcely be believed hereafter, that in the years 1775 and 1776, a German, who had been a servant in a public ridingschool, (from which he was discharged for insufficiency,) revived this exploded practice of water-casting. After he had amply increased the bills of mortality, and been publicly hung up to the ridicule of those who had too much sense to consult him, as a monument of the folly of his patients, he retired with a princely fortune, and perhaps is now indulging a hearty laugh at the expence of English credulity. STEEVENS.
The time is not yet come, when this is to be thought incre. dible. The same impudent quackery is carried on at this day.
BOSWELL. 8 — to GIRD at me :] i. e. to gibe. So, in Lyly's Mother Bombie, 1594 : “ We maids are mad wenches; we gird them, and flout them," &c. STEEVENS.
any other reason than to set me off, why then I have no judgment. Thou whoreson mandrake, thou art fitter to be worn in my cap, than to wait at my heels. I was never manned with an agate · till now': but I will set * you neither in gold nor silver, but in vile apparel, and send you back again to your master, for a jewel; the juvenal, the prince your master, whose chin is not yet fledged. I will sooner have a beard grow in the palm of my hand, than he shall get one on his cheek; and yet he will not stick to say, his face is a face-royal: God
* Quartos, in-set. 9- mandrake,] Mandrake is a root supposed to have the shape of a man; it is now counterfeited with the root of briony.
Johnson. "I was never MANNED with an AGATE till now :) That is, I never before had an agate for my man. Johnson. · Alluding to the little figures cut in agates, and other hard stones, for seals; and therefore he says, “ I will set you neither in gold nor silver.” The Oxford editor alters it to aglet, a tag to the points then in use (a word, indeed, which our author uses to express the same thought): but aglets, though they were sometimes of gold or silver, were never set in those metals.
WARBURTON. It appears from a passage in Beaumont and Fletcher's Coxcomb, that it was usual for justices of peace either to wear an agate in a ring, or as an appendage to their gold chain : " Thou wilt spit as formally, and show thy agate and hatched chain, as well as the best of them.”
The same allusion is employed on the same occasion in The Isle of Gulls, 1606:
“ Grace, you Agate! hast not forgot that yet?" The virtues of the agate were anciently supposed to protect the wearer from any misfortune. So, in Greene's Mamillia, 1593 : “ – the man that hath the stone agathes about him, is surely defenced against adversity.” Steevens.
I believe an agate is used merely to express any thing remarkably little, without any allusion to the figure cut upon it. So, in Much Ado About Nothing, vol. vii. p. 74, n. 3 :
“ If low, an agate very vilely cut.” Malone. 2 — the JUVENAL,] This term, which has already occurred in A Midsummer-Night's Dream, and Love's Labour's Lost, is used in many places by Chaucer, and always signifies a young man. STEEVENS.