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This seems an allusion to some incident known at the time; I wonder it has not engaged the attention, and excited the enquiry of some of the commentators. 134. “ Now, if you can blush, and cry guilty,
Cardinal, “ You'll shew a little honesty.” There are two modes of pointing this passage, with, perhaps, equal claims to acceptance. Now, if you can (i. e. if there be any shame in your nature) blush and cry guilty, in doing so you'll shew a little honesty. Or else: Now if you can blúsh and cry guilty, you will shew (in such humiliation) a little honesty. The first of these modes, with the imperative, “ blush,” I am rather inclined to, as I am to the pointing a passage somewhat similar to this, in Cymbeline :
“Now, if you can, be pale.” 138. “Vain pomp, and glory of this world, I
hate ye.” “Ye” should be corrected to you. 144. “- o, Cromwell, “ Had I but serv'd my God with half the
zeal “ I serv'd my king, he would not,” &c. There is, in this celebrated passage, a grammatical inaccuracy: the preposition before the implied pronoun which, is necessary in the comparison between “my God” and “my king :" “With half the zeal with (which) I serv'd my king.”
ACT IV. SCENE I.
150. “God save you, sir ! where have you been
broiling.” A word or syllable is wanting : perhaps, abroiling. 152. “ The press.”
i. e. The crowd. 153. “
Ye shall go my way, which “Is to the court, and there ye shall be my
guests.” “Ye,” in the last line, spoils the measure, and ought to be ejected.
158. " He was never,
“ But where he meant to ruin, pitiful.” He never made shew of compassion but where his secret purpose was cruelty. The writer of Junius's Letters seems to have made use of this passage, where, speaking of an instance of apparent candour in Lord Mansfield, he remarks, " that cunning Scotchman never speaks truth but with a fraudulent design;" and Otway, in the Orphan :
“'Tis thus the false hyena makes her moan, “To
“ And all that pity you are made your prey.” 159. “Men's evil manners live in brass ; their
This sentiment occurs in Julius Cæsar:
" The evil that men do lives after them;
“ The good is oft interred with their bones. 160. “ This Cardinal;
“Though from an humble stock, undoubt,
edly “Was fashion'd to much honour : from
his cradle “ He was a scholar, and a ripe and good
one.” I am surprised to find Theobald's clear punctuation of this passage rejected both by Mr. Malone and the last editor. “ Was fashion’d to much honour from his cra
dle.” There is no violence (at least poetic precedent fully warrants it) in saying a man was formed by nature for greatness; that he was ennobled by nature at his birth; but to say that any one was born a scholar, and a ripe scholar, cannot be reconciled to any thing like truth or propriety of expression: besides, the passage quoted from Holinshed, which unquestionably was before our author when he wrote these lines, appears to be decisive on the side of Theobald : " This Cardinal was a man undoubtedly born to
honour." 163. “— Whom I most hated,” &c.
“Whom” cannot properly stand for “him whom.” 164. " Bright faces
“ Cast thousand beams upon me.”
This is vicious idiom; but as great men must be copied, even in their errors, Mr. Collins has introduced it in his Ode on the Passions : “ Cast thousand odours from his dewy wings.” 168. “ For honesty, and decent carriage."
Carriage a trisyllable.
ACT V. SCENE 1.
170. “ These should be hours for necessities.”
When hour occurs with the quantity of two syllables, as it often does, it should be printed so, how'ér, or hoúér, according to the old ortho
180. " Know you not how
“ Your state stands 'the world, with the
whole world ? “ Your enemies." “The whole world” is here an awkward, unmeaning interpolation, encumbering the measure, and ought to be ejected :
“ Know you not how
186. “ The chief cause concerns his Grace of
Canterbury.” But this was the only cause, and “ chief," therefore, which is alike impertinent to the sense
and burthensome to the measure, should be withdrawn. 187. We all are men “ In our own natures frail, and capable of
our flesh.” Capable of our flesh, I think, must mean, susceptible-of or liable-to the frailties of our flesh:-capable is used in Hamlet for susceptible:
His form and cause conjoin'd “ Preaching to stones would make them capable.” 194. " I come not “ To hear such flattery now, and in my
presence, “ They are too thin and base to hide of
fences.” I cannot agree with Mr. Whalley in supposing that the punctuation, here, is right. Where should the king “ hear” flattery but in his “ presence ?" I came not, he says, to hear such flattery; and, while I am present, to utter such gross adulation, is too flimsy and mean a cloak of those purposes at which I am offended.—This I take to be the meaning, and if so, the former pointing was right: " I come not “ To hear such flattery now: and in my presence “ They are too thin,” &c. 195. “ To me you cannot reach, you play the
spaniel.” The construction seems to be: “To me (whom) you cannot reach, you play the
spaniel." 198. “ Two noble partners with you ; the old
Duchess of Norfolk.”