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SCENE III. Patience and Sorrow.
Patience and forrow strove Which should express her goodliest ; you have seen Sun-fhine and rain at once :her smiles and tears (20) Were like a better day Those happiest smiles, That play'd on her ripe lip, seem'd not to know What guests were in her eyes ; which parted thence, As pearls from diamonds dropt.-In brief, Sorrow would be a rarity most belov'd, If all could so become it.
Scene IV. Description of Lear distracted. (21) Alack, 'tis he ; why, he was met even now As mad as the vext sea; singing aloud ; Crown'd with rank fumiterr, and furrow-weeds, With hardocks, hemlock, nettles, cuckoo-flowers,
(20) Were like a better day. So the old editions read ; Mr.War. burlon says, “ without question we should read,
A wetter May e, a spring-season wetter than ordinary:" I cannot come into his opinion ; nor by any means apprehend, how her smiles and tears can with any propriety be compar'd to a spring-season, wetter than ordinary: the poet is comparing her patience and forrow, exprest, the one by smiles, the other by tears, to a day, wherein there is both fun-fhine and rain at the same time : you have seen, says he, Sun-shine and rain at once ; such was her patience and sorrow : her smiles and tears were like a day so cheguer'd, when the rain and the fun-fhine contended as it were together. This I apprehend to be the sense of the passage. But then what must we do with better I own myself incapable of fixing any sense to it, nor does any emendation strike me, that the reader perhaps will judge plausible enough : he'll see, I had an eye in the ex. plaining of the passage, on chequer'd ;
Her smiles and tears Were like a chequer'd day ; which is the most probable word that occurs at present, tho' I advance it not with any degree of certainty. He speaks of a cbequer'd
madow, in Titus Andronicus, Act 2. Sc. 4 (21) Alack, &c.] See Hamlet, Act 4. Sc. 10. and the note.
Darnel, and all the idle weeds that grow
SCENE VI. Description of Dover-Cliff. Come on, fir, here's the place-stand still. How
Glofter's Farewel to the World.
(22) O, you mighty gods!
(22) Gloster is afterwards convinced of his mistake, and coa. firmed in the duty of sufferance : he fays ;
I do remember now: henceforth l’ll bear
Enough, enough, and die.
To Degov ir ty, &c.
My snuff and loathed part of nature should
Scene VII. Lear, in his Madness, on the grofs
Flatterers of Princes, Ha! Goneril ! ha! Regan! they flatter'd me like a dog, and told me I had white hairs in my beard, ere the black ones were there. To say, ay, and no, to every thing that I said Ay, and no too, was no good divinity. When the rain came to wet me once, and the wind to make me chatter; when the thunder would not peace at my bidding ; there I found 'em, there I finelt 'em out. Go to, they are not (23) men o' their words; they told me, I was 'every thing : 'tis a lie, I am not ague-prcof.
On the Abuse of Power. Thou rascal-beadle, hold thy bloody hand: Why doft thou lah that whore? strip thy own back; Thou hotly luft'st to use her in that kind, For which thou whip’t her. The usurer hangs the
Through tatter'd cloaths small vices do appear ;
(23) See Act 2. Sc. 6. foregoing. Mr. Upton, milled by the beginning of this speech; and apprehending, the king in his madness used exact connexion, tells us, we should not read, men o' ibeir words, but women of their words : whereas it is plain, he Tuns off from the thought of his daughters, to those who flatter'd him, and all thro' the speech speaks of them only: the criticism is scarce worth remarking, except it be to fhew, how subject all of us are to miftakes, and how little reason the very wiseft have to triumph over the errors of others,
Take that of me, my friend, who have the pow'r
SCENE X Cordelia, on the Ingratitude of her
And waft thou fain, poor father,
ACT V." SCENE V.
Talk (24) And, &c.]
Tis a catalogue
Talk of court-news, and we'll talk with them too,
Edm. Take them away.
Lear. Upon such sacrifices, my Cordelia, The gods themselves throw incense.
The Justice of the Gods. (25) The gods are juft, and of our pleasant vices Makes instruments to scourge us.
Edgar's Account of his discovering himself to his
Lift a brief tale,
Who sells her honour for a diamond,
The False One, A& 1. Sc. i. The word jjies, in the text, is taken in the sense of, Spies upon any one, to inspeet their conduct
, not spies emp’oy'd by a person: (25) Tbe, &c.) This retorting of punishments, and making the means by which we offended the scourge of our offence, is very common amongst the ancients, and perhaps had its rise from the Jewiss people. An eye for an eye, a toorb for a tooth, &c. Callima. sbus, in his Hymn to Pallas, tells us, that goddess depriv'd the young hunter of his eyes, because they had offended, 'having seen her in the balb.. See the Hymn, v. 756. And, in Sopbocles, at the end of Electra, Orestes cries out to Ægistus;
Peace, and attend me to that place where shou