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Rom. Father, what news? what is the prince's
What sorrow craves acquaintance at my hand,
dear son with such sour company : I bring thee tidings of the prince's doom.
Rom. What less than dooms-day is the prince's doom?
Fri. A gentler judgment vanish'd from his lips, Not body's death, but body's banishment.
Rom. Ha! banishment? be merciful, say—death: For exile hath more terror in his look,
Much more than death: do not say-banishment.
Hence-banished is banish'd from the world,
Fri. O deadly sin! O rude unthankfulness!
Rom. 'Tis torture, and not mercy: heaven is here, Where Juliet lives 2; and every cat, and dog, And little mouse, every unworthy thing,
1 The quarto, 1597, reads This is mere mercy,' i. e. absolute
2 From this and the foregoing speech of Romeo, Dryden has borrowed in his beautiful paraphrase of Chaucer's Palamon and Arcite :
'Heaven is not but where Emily abides,
Live here in heaven, and may look on her,
And say'st thou yet, that exile is not death?
O friar, the damned use that word in hell;
A sin-absolver, and my friend profess'd,
3 Validity is again employed to signify worth, value, in the first scene of King Lear.
By courtship, courtesy, courtly behaviour is meant. See vol. iii. p. 136, note 32. As this is one of the words which have escaped the industry of Shakspeare's editors, it may be as well to elucidate its meaning fully. Bullokar defines' compliment to be ceremony, court-ship, fine behaviour.' See also Cotgrave in Curtisanie and Curialité; and Florio in Cortegianía. • Would I might never excell a Dutch skipper in courtship, if I did not put distate into my carriage of purpose, I knew I should not please them.'-Sir Giles Goosecap, a Comedy. Again, in the same play: My lord, my want of courtship makes me fear I should be rude.'
• Whilst the young lord of Telamon, her husband,
Ford's Fancies Chaste and Noble.
See also Gifford's Massinger, vol. ii. p. 505, where the true meaning of the word has not escaped the acute and able editor.
Fri. Thou fond mad man, hear me but speak a
Rom. O, thou wilt speak again of banishment. Fri. I'll give thee armour to keep off that word; Adversity's sweet milk, philosophy *,
To comfort thee, though thou art banished.
Fri. O, then I see that madmen have no ears. Rom. How should they, when that wise men have no eyes?
Fri. Let me dispute with thee of thy estate 5. Rom. Thou canst not speak of what thou dost not feel:
Wert thou as young as I, Juliet thy love,
Then might'st thou speak, then might'st thou tear thy hair,
And fall upon the ground, as I do now,
4 So in the poem of Romeus and Juliet, the Friar says:Virtue is always thrall to troubles and annoy,
But wisdom in adversity finds cause of quiet joy.'
See also Lyly's Euphues, 1580:- Thou sayest banishment is bitter to the freeborne. There be many meates which are sowre in the mouth and sharp in the maw; but if thou mingle them with sweet sawces, they yeeld both a pleasant taste and wholesome nourishment.—I speake this to this end, that though thy exile seem grievous to thee, yet guiding thyself with the rules of philosophy it shall be more tolerable.'
5 The same phrase, and with the same meaning, occurs in The Winter's Tale ::
can he speak? hear?
Know man from man? dispute his own estate?
i. e. is he able to talk over his own affairs, or the present state he is in?
Fri. Arise; one knocks; good Romeo, hide thyself. [Knocking within. Rom. Not I; unless the breath of heart-sick groans, Mistlike, infold me from the search of eyes.
[Knocking. Fri. Hark, how they knock!-Who's there?-Romeo, arise;
Thou wilt be taken :-Stay awhile: stand up;
[Knocking. Who knocks so hard? whence come you? what's your will?
Nurse. [Within.] Let me come in, and you shall know my errand;
I come from Lady Juliet.
Nurse. O holy friar, O tell me, holy friar, Where is my lady's lord, where's Romeo? Fri. There on the ground, with his own tears made drunk.
Nurse. O, he is even in my mistress' case,
Blubbering and weeping, weeping and blubbering:-
Nurse. Ah sir! ah sir!-Well, death's the end of all.
Rom. Spak'st thou of Juliet? how is it with her? Doth she not think me an old murderer,
Now I have stain'd the childhood of our joy
Nurse. O, she says nothing, sir, but weeps and
And now falls on her bed; and then starts up,
As if that name,
Shot from the deadly level of a gun,
Did murder her; as that name's cursed hand Murder'd her kinsman.-O tell me, friar, tell me, In what vile part of this anatomy
Doth my name lodge? tell me, that I may sack
The hateful mansion.
[Drawing his Sword. Hold thy desperate hand: Art thou a man? thy form cries out, thou art; Thy tears are womanish; thy wild acts denote The unreasonable fury of a beast7: Unseemly woman, in a seeming man! Or ill beseeming beast, in seeming both! Thou hast amaz'd me: by my holy order, I thought thy disposition better temper❜d. Hast thou slain Tybalt? wilt thou slay thyself?
6 The epithet concealed is to be understood, not of the person, but of the condition of the lady; so that the sense is, 'My lady, whose being so, together with our marriage which made her so, is concealed from the world.'
7 Shakspeare has here followed the poem :
'Art thou, quoth he, a man? thy shape saith, so thou art,
If thou a man or woman wert, or else a brutish beast.'