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(1) SCENE II.— Yet is this no charm for the tooth-ache.] In Aubrey's Miscellanies, p. 141, is one of these charis :
" To cure the tooth-ach : Out of Mr. Ashmole's manuscript writ with his own hand :- Mars, hur, abursa, aburse : Jesus Christ for Mary's sake,-Take away this Tooth-Ach.' Write the words three times; and as you say the words, let the party burn one paper, then another, and then the last. He says, he saw it experimented, and the party immediately cured.”
(2) SCENE III.-You speak like an ancient and most quiet watchman.] Of the functionary whom Shakespeare had in view, the ancient watchman of London, there are two or three representations preserved. He was clad in a long loose cloak or coat, which reached to his heels, and was belted at the waist, and he usually carried the pike or halbert called “ a bill,” with a lantern and a great bell. The
charge," or duties of his office, are clearly laid down in the accompanying extract from Dalton's • Country Jus. tice:"
“This watch is to be kept yearly from the feast of the Ascention until Michaelmas, in every towne, and shall continue all the night, sc. from the sunne setting to the sunne rising. All such strangers, or persons suspected, as shall in the night time passe by the watchmen (appointed thereto by the towne constable, or other officer), may be examined by the said watchmen, whence they come, and what they be, and of their businosse, &c. And if they find cause of suspition, they shall stay them; and if such persons will not obey the arrest of the watchmen, the said watchmen shall levie hue and crie, that the offendors may be taken: or else they may justifie to beate them (for that they resist the peace and Justice of the Realme), and may also set them in the stockes (for the same) untill the morning; and then, if no suspition be found, the said persons shall be let go and quit : But if they find cause of suspition, they shall forthwith deliver the said persons to the sherife, who shall keepe them in prison untill they bee duely delivered ; or else the watchmen may deliver such person to the constable, and so to convey them to the Justice of peace, by him to be examined, and to be bound over, or committed, untill the offenders be acquitted in due manner.”
proving the wearing of a Locke to he unseemely," 1628 and from a passage in his Histriomastix, it appears that the fashion had become prevalent in a class not unlikely to be under the surveillance of worthy Dog berry's partners,” Hugh Oatcake and George Seacole, « - and more especially in long, unshorne, womanish, frizled, loveprovoking haire, and love-lockes growne now too much in fashion with comly pages, youthes, and lewd, effeminate, ruffianly persons.'
Manzoni informs us that in Lombardy during the same period, the custom was affected by a lawless class of the community as a cloak for their iniquity, and numerous edicts were promulgated, forbidding the use of locks either before or behind the ears, under a penalty of three hundred crowns, or three years' imprisonment in the galleys. “ Bravoes by profession and villains of every kind, used to wear a long lock of hair, which they drew over the face like a vizor on meeting any one, so that the lock might almost be considered a part of the armour, and a distinctive mark of bravoes and vagabonds, whence those characters commonly bore the name of Ciufi, i.e. Locks." -I Promessi Sposi, Cap. 3.
(4) SCENE IV.--Carduus Benedictus.] “ Blessed Thistle is called in Latine every where Carduus Benedictus, and in shops by a compound word, Cardo-benedictus ; it is a kinde of wilde bastard Saffron.
“ Blessed Thistle, taken in meate or drinke, is good for the swimming and giddinesse of the head, it strengthneth memorie, and is a singular remedie against deafnesse.”GERARD's Herbal.
“ Carduus Benedictus, or blessed Thistell, so worthily named for the singular vertues that it hath. *** Howsoever it be used it strengtheneth all the principall partes of the bodie, it sharpeneth both the wit and memory, quickeneth all the senses, comforteth the stomacke, procureth appetite, and hath a special vertue against poison, and preserveth from the pestilence, and is excellent good against any kind of Fever being used in this manner: Take a dramme of the powder, put it into a good draught of ale or wine, warme it and drinke it a quarter of an hour before the fit doth come, then goe to bed, cover you well with clothes, and procure sweate, which by the force of the herbe will easily come foorth, and so continue until the fit be past : or else you may take the distilled water after the same maner. By this meanes you may recover in a short time, yea if it were a pestilentiall fever. So that this remedie be used before twelve houres be past after the disease felt. For which notable effects this herb may worthily be called Benedictus or Omni morbia, that is a salve for everie sore, not known to Physitians of old time, but lately revealed by the speciall providence of Almightie God.”—The Haven of Health, by Thomas Cogan, Maister of Artes and Bacheler of Physicke. Lond. 4to. b. l. 1596.
(3) SCENE III.-And one Deformed is one of them ; I know him, 'a wears a lock.] The custom, imported from the Continent, of wearing a long lock of hair, sometimes ornamented with gaudy ribbons, came into fashion in the sixteenth century. In Greene's “Quip for an Upstart Courtier," 1592, quoted by Mr. Halliwell, a barber asks his customer, “Will you be Frenchified with a love-lock down to your shoulders, wherein you may hang your mistres' favor?” Against this practice Prynne wrote a treatise, entitled “The Unlovelinesse of Love-lockes, or a Discourse
There is another allusion to this graceful custom in the present Comedy, Act IV. Sc. 1:--
“ Maintain a mourning ostentation;
And, on your family's old monument,
Hang mournful epitaphs." And Izaak Walton, in his “Life of Dr. Donne," supplies a curious illustration of it under the date of 1631. "The next day after bis burial some one of the many lovers and admirers of his virtue and learning, writ this epitaph with a coal on the wall over his grave :
• Reader! I am to let Thee know
(2) SCENE II.-1 give thee the bucklers.] This is an expression borrowed from Sword and Buckler play, and often adopted by our old writers, meaning, I yield myself vanquished. Thus, in P. Holland's translation of “ Pliny's Natural History," B. x. Ch. xxi. :-“It goeth against his stomach (the cock's) to yeeld the gantlet and give the bucklers."
Again, in Greene's Second Part of “Coney-Catching," 1592 :—“At this his master laught, and was glad for further advantage, to yield the bucklers to his prentice." And in Chapman's “May-Day," 1611 :
" And now I lay the bucklers at your feet."
(1) SCENE I.
Hang her an epitaph upon her tomb.] In some curious observations attached to Pietro Aretino's book of “The Three Impostors,” M. De la Monnoie refers to the practice of suspending epitaphs on the hearses and monuments of important personages, as being common in the sixteenth century. “It is the custom with Catholics," he remarks, “to attach to some pillar or other place near to the tombs of deceased persons, and especially such as were of reputation, papers of funeral inscriptions. These inscriptions were, in fact, as they always ought to be, to the honour of the departed individual ; but as Aretino had been a notorious libertine, it is quite possible that after his interment some satirist hung the condemnatory epitaph preserved by Moréri, on the door of St. Luke's church, where he was buried.” The custom was still general in England when Shakespeare lived ; many fine and interesting examples of it existing in the old cathedral of St. Paul's, and other churches of London, down to the time of the Great Fire, in the form of pensile-tables of wood and metal, painted or engraved with poetical memorials, suspended against the columns and walls. * Among these may be particularized the well-known verses on Queen Elizabeth, beginning :
Spaines Rod, Romes Ruine, Netherlands Reliefe;" which appear to have been very generally displayed in the churches of the realm.
* See Slow, Weever, and Dugdale.
ANCIENT BALLAD OF “LIGHT O' LOVE,” (see p. 720.)
From the original black-letter copy in the Library of GEORGE DANIEL, Esq.
I bery proper dittie to the tune of Lightie lobe.
Leave Lightie love Ladies for feare of yll name :
By force I am stred my fancie to write,
Ye men that are subject to Cupid his stroke,
Consider that poy son doth lurke often tyme
ANEXES so daintie, Example may bee,
For Troylus tried the same over well,
With Drax so chaste, you seeme to compare,
“ The main plot in such Ado about Nothing is the same with the story of Ariodante and Ginerra, in Ariosto; the secondary circumstances and development are no doubt very different. The mode in which the innocent Hero before the altar at the moment of the wedding, and in the presence of her family and many witnesses, is put to shame by a most degrading charge, false indeed, yet clothed with every appearance of truth, is a grand piece of theatrical effect in the true and justifiable sense. The impression would have been too tragical had not Shakspeare carefully softened it, in order to prepare for a fortunate catastrophe. The discovery of the plot against Hero has been already partly made, though not by the persons interested; and the poet has contrived, by means of the blundering simplicity of a couple of constables and watchmen, to convert the arrest and the examination of the guilty individuals into scenes full of the most delightful amusement. There is also a second piece of theatrical effect not inferior to the first, where Claudio, now convinced of his error, and in obedience to the penance laid on his fault, thinking to give his hand to a relation of his injured bride, whom he supposes dead, discovers, on her unmasking, Hero herself. The extraordinary success of this play in Shakspeare's own day, and even since in England, is, however, to be ascribed more particularly to the parts of Benedick and Beatrice, two humorsome beings, who incessantly attack each other with all the resources of raillery. Avowedly rebels to love, they are both entangled in its net by a merry plot of their friends to make them believe that each is the object of the secret passion of the other. Some one or other, not over-stocked with penetration, has objected to the same artifice being twice used in entrapping them; the drollery, however, lies in the very symmetry of the deception. Their friends attribute the whole effect to their own device, but the exclusive direction of their raillery against each other is in itself a proof of a growing inclination. Their witty vivacity does not even abandon them in the avowal of love; and their behaviour only assumes a serious appearance for the purpose of defending the slandered Hero. This is exceedingly well imagined; the lovers of jesting must fix a point beyond which they are not to indulge in their humour, if they would not be mistaken for buffoons by trade."-SCHLEGEL.
END OF VOL. I.
LONDON: R. CLAY, PRINTER, BREAD STREET HILL.