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A person sometimes is agitated at once by different passions. The mind in this case vibrating like a pendulum, vents itself in sentiments which partake of the same vibration. This I give as a third observation :
Queen. 'Would I had never trod this English
earth, Or felt the flatteries that
it! Ye've angels faces, but Heav'n knows
[To her women.
Henry VIII. a£t 3. sc. 5,
Oibello. Oh devil, devil!
crocodile. Qut of my light.
Desdemona. I will not stay t'offend you. [going.
Lodovico. Truly, an obedient lady:
Oih. What would you with her, Sir?
Sir, she can turn and turn, and yet go on;
- get you away, I'll send for you anon— Sir, I obey the mandate, And will return to Venice. - Hence, avaunt!
[Exit Desdemona. Oibello, act 4, Jc. 6.
Æmilia. Oh! my good Lord, I would speak a
word with you. Qtbello. Yes, 'tis Æmilia — by and by- she's
dead. 'Tis like, she comes to speak of Cassio’s death ; The noise was high.— Ha, no more moving? Still as the grave.
Shall she come in? were't good? I think she stirs again - No-- what's the best? If she come in, she'll, sure, speak to my wife; My wife! my wife! What wife? I have no wife, Oh insupportable! oh heavy hour !
Orbello, at 5. sc. 7.
A fourth observation is, that nature, which gave us passions, and made them extremely beneficial when moderate, intended undoubtedly that they should be subjected to the government of reason and conscience * It is therefore against the order of nature, that passion in any case should take the lead in contradiction to reason and conscience. Such a state of mind is a sort of anarchy, which every one is ashamed of, and endeavours to hide or diffemble. Even love, however laudable, is attended with a conscious shame when it becomes immoderate: it is covered from the world, and difclosed only to the beloved object :
l'amour souvent de remors combattu
Boileau, L'art poet, chant. 3. I. 101.
O, they love least that let men know their love.
Two Gentlemen of Verona, aEt 1. sc. 3.
Hence a capital rule in the representation of strong passions, that their genuine sentiments
* See whap. 2. part 7.
ought ought to be hid or dissembled as much as possible. And this holds in an especial manner with respect to criminal passions. One never counfels the commission of a crime in plain terms.
Guilt must not appear in its native colours, even in thought: the propofal must be made by hints, and by representing the action in some favourable light. Of the propriety of sentiment upon such an occasion, Shakespear, in the Tempeft, has given us a beautiful example. The subject is a proposal made by the usurping Duke of Milan to Sebastian, to murder his brother the King of Naples.
What might Worthy Sebastian -Q, what might — no more. And yet, methinks, I see it in thy face, What thou should'st be : th’occasion speaks thee,
and My strong imagination sees a crown Dropping upon thy head.
At 2. sc. I. There cannot be a finer picture of this fort, than that of King John soliciting Hubert to murder the young Prince Arthur.
K. John. Come hither, Hubert. O my gentle
Hubert. I am much bounden to your Majesty.
fay so yet
e fun is in the heav'n, and the proud day, Attended with the pleasures of the world, Is all too wanton, and too full of gawds, To give me audience. If the midnight-bell Did with his iron tongue and brazen mouth. Sound one into the drowsy race of night; If this same were a church-yard where we stand, And thou possessed with a thousand wrongs; . Or if that surly spirit Melancholy Had bak'd thy blood and made it heavy-thick, Which else runs tickling up and down the veins,