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945. « The dead man's knell

Is there scarce ask'd, for who." Who" should be whom ; but the construction is harsh and unwarrantable: the knell is heard without the question being asked for whom? 246. There ran a rumour

Of many worthy fellows that were out.i. e Abroad, in the field, against the usurper.

LORD CHEDWORTH. 249.He has no children.

It is hardly necessary to enquire here whether Macbeth really had children or not-the words are the passionate ejaculation of a father, and imply no more than," he who could do this deed cannot have a father's feelings. Queen Margaret, in a similar strain of reproach, exclaims, at the murderers of her son Edward,

“Ye have no children, butchers ! 251. Cut short all intermission." Just so does Hotspur invoke

“O let the hours be short.” 252. Our lack is nothing but our leave.

We want nothing but the king's leave or permission to go: or may it not mean, nothing now remains but the ceremony of taking leave.


260. “ Minutely revolts.

Revolts that are breaking out every minute.


265. "

This push Will cheer me ever, or disseat me now.” · It is probable that in Shakspeare's time chair was pronounced as at present it is, vulgårly, like “cheer;" a quibble is plainly observable between “ chairing” (seating), and “ cheering(encouraging); a similar licence, for a similar purpose, is used with reasons, and raisins, in K. Henry IV. “ If reasons were as plenty as blackberries, is 273. “ Pull't off, I say.

This is said to the person helping to arm Macbeth, who is impatient at some obstacle,


SCENE IV. 274. Where there is advantage to be given,

more and less have given him the

revolt.It appears to me, that the true sense of this passage has been overlooked by all the commentators. “Where there is advantage to be given," I believe, implies, where there is evident inferiority; the castle is the tyrant's “ main hope;" because (says the speaker) from an army already inferior to ours, desertions, both great and small, are continually weakening him. That this is the meaning, I think is clear, from a passage in King

Henry V. where the Dauphin, speaking of the weak condition of the English army, asks— “ Shall we go send them dinners and fresh suits, “ And give their fasting horses provender, And after fight them?"

Where there is advantage to be given.Perhaps we should read, “ to be taken.”


SCENE VII. 287. 66 Either thou, Macbeth, Or else my sword, with an unbatter'd

edge, I sheathe again unheeded.This is a broken sentence: if the speaker's impetuosity had allowed him to be explicit, he would have said-Either thou, Macbeth, shalt receive in thy body my sword, or else I will return it unbattered into the scabbard. 290. “ It hath cow'd my better part of

man !Milton says"

Compassion quell’d “ His best of man.”— Parad. Lost. 292. Had I as many sons as I have hairs."

In the Pilgrim, by Beaumont and Fletcher, we find a similar expression :

“ Thou hast as many sins as hairs.” And Othello exclaims

Had all his hairs been lives, “My great revenge had stomach for them all."



344. Thy nephew, and right royal sovereign."

Sovereign is not always a trisyllable. “Might by the sověreign pow'r you have of us."

Hamlet, Act 2, 155. 345.Be thou as lightning in the eyes of

France ; For ere thou canst report I will be there,

The thunder of my cannon shall be heard." This passage appears censurable, though not where Dr. Johnson has lodged his objection: the allusion is clearly to the swiftness of lightning, and the suddenness with which the thunder follows it. Yet, had Shakspeare ascribed, as he does elsewhere, the devastation to the thunder, and not to the lightning, he would need no justification, the poetical as well as the popular notion having always been such:

" His face
" Deep scars of thunder had intrench'd.”

Paradise Lost.
And the thunder
“ Hath spent his shafts."

Ibid. So much the stronger prov'd " He with his thunder.”

Ibid. but as Chatillon is to be the lightning to the thunder of invasion, and as the thunder cannot precede the lightning, the sense, as I conceive it, demands the expunction of a letter at the beginning of the second line :

" Or, ere thou can'st report,” i. e, if you be not as quick as lightning,“ my thunder will be. there before you." 346. Upon the right and party of her son PM

Upon the title, claim, the question of right. 349.“ — 'A pops me out.

This mode of expression is common in the county of Somerset, and in parts of Yorkshire.

But whe'r I be as true begot, or no." Whe'r, for whether, occurs in other places, and was anciently printed without a mark of contraction. 350. He hath a trick of Cæur-de-Lion's face."

Trick, here, is a peculiar habit of the features. Thus in King Henry IV.

A villainous trick of thine eye, and foolish hanging of thy nether lip." 358. Well won is still well shot.

What has been effectually obtained, will always justify the means of obtension. We question not the skill of the fowler who brings home plenty of game. 359. And if his name be George, I'll call him

Peter ; For new-made honour doth forget men's


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