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Clo. Have I not told thee, how I was cozened by the way, and lost all my money?
“Will you in faith, and I 'll give you a tawdrie lace." Tom, the miller, offers this present to the queen, if she will procure his pardon.
It may be worth while to observe, that these tawdry laces were not the strings with which the ladies fasten their stays, but were worn about their heads, and their waists. So, in The Four P's, 1569:
“ Brooches and rings, and all manner of beads,
“ Laces round and flat for women's heads.” Again, in Drayton's Pol;olbion, song the second:
66 Of which the Naides and the blew Nereides make
66 Them tawdries for their necks." In a marginal note it is observed that tawdries are a kind of necklaces worn by country wenches. Again, in the fourth song:
- not the smallest beck, “But with white pebbles makes her tawdries for her neck."
Steevens. - a pair of sweet gloves.] Sweet, or perfumed gloves, are frequently mentioned by Shakspeare, and were very fashionable in the age of Elizabeth, and long afterwards. Thus Autolycus, in the song just preceding this passage, offers to sale:
« Gloves as sweet as damask roses." Stowe's Continuator, Edmund Howes, informs us, that the English could not “make any costly wash or perfume, until about the fourteenth or fifteenth of the queene [Elizabeth] the right honourable Edward Vere earl of Oxford came from Italy, and brought with him gloves, sweet bagges, a perfumed leather jer. kin, and other pleasant thinges: and that yeare the queene had a payre of perfumed gloves trimmed onlie with foure tuftes, or roses, of cullered silke. The queene took such pleasure in those gloves, that shee was pictured with those gloves upon her hands: and for many yeers after it was called the erle of Oxfordes perfume.” Stowe's Annals, by Howes, edit. 1614, p. 868, col. 2.
In the computus of the bursars of Trinity College, Oxford, for the year 1631, the following article occurs: “Solut. pro fumigandis chirothecis.” Gloves make a constant and considerable article of expense in the earlier accompt-books of the college here men. tioned; and without doubt in those of many other societies. They were annually given (a custom still subsisting) to the college-tenants, and often presented to guests of distinction. But appears (at least, from accompts
of the said college in preceding years) that the practice of perfuming gloves for this purpose was fallen into disuse soon after the reign of Charles the First.
T. Warton. In the ancient metrical romance of The Sowdon of Babyloyne, (which must have been written before the year 1375) is the fol. lowing passage, from which one would suppose, (if the author
Aut. And, indeed, sir, there are cozeners abroad; therefore it behoves men to be wary.
Clo. Fear not thou, man, thou shalt lose nothing here.
Aut. I hope so, sir; for I have about me many parcels of charge.
Clo. What hast here? ballads?
Mop. Pray now, buy some: I love a ballad in print, a'-life ;5 for then we are sure they are true.
Aut. Here 's one, to a very doleful tune, How a usurer's wife was brought to bed of twenty money-bags at a burden; and how she longed to eat adders' heads, and toads carbonadoed.
Mop. Is it true, think you?
Aut. Here's the midwife's name to 't, one mistress Taleporter; and five or six honest wives' that were present: Why should I carry lies abroad?6
Mop. 'Pray you now, buy it.
Clo. Come on, lay it by: And let 's first see more ballads; we'll buy the other things anon.
has been guilty of no anti-climax) that gloves were once a more estimable present than gold:
“Lete me thy prisoneres'seen,
“ I wole thee gyfe both goolde and gloves." p. 39. Steevens. 5 I love a ballad in print, a’-life;] 'Theobald reads, as it has been hitherto printed, or a life. The text, however, is right; only it should be printed thus :—a’-life. So, it is in Ben Jonson:
thou loo'st a'-life “ Their perfum'd judgment.” It is the abbreviation, I suppose, of—at life; as a'-evork is, of at work. Tyrwhitt.
This restoration is certainly proper. So, in The Isle of Gulls, 1606: “ Now in good deed I love them a'-life too.” Again, in A Trick to catch the Old One, 1619: “I love that sport a'-life, i' faith."
.” A-life is the reading of the eldest copies of The Winter" Tale, viz. fol. 1623, and 1632. Steevens.
Why should I carry lies abroad?] Perhaps Shakspeare remembered the following lines, which are found in Golding's translation of Ovid, 1587, in the same page in which he read the story of Baucis and Philemon, to which he has alluded in Much Ado about Nothing. They conclude the tale:
“ These things did ancient men report of credite very good, "For why, there was no cause that they should lie. As I there
stood,” &c. Malone.
Aut. Here's another ballad, Of a fish,' that appeared upon the coast, on Wednesday the fourscore of April, forty thousand fathom above water, and sung this ballad against the hard hearts of maids: it was thought, she was a woman, and was turned into a cold fish, for she would not exchange flesh8 with one that loved her: The ballad is very pitiful, and as true.
Dor. Is it true too, think you?
Aut. Five justices' hands at it; and witnesses, more than my pack will hold.
Clo. Lay it by too: Another.
Aut. Why, this is a passing merry one; and goes to the tune of, Two maids wooing a man: there 's scarce a maid westward, but she sings it; 'tis in request, I can
Mop. We can both sing it; if thou 'lt bear a part, thou shalt hear; 'tis in three parts.
Dor. We had the tune on 't a month ago.
Aut. I can bear my part; you must know, 'tis my occupation: have at it with you.
D. Whither? M. O, whither? D. Whither?
D. Me too, let me go thither.
ballad, Of a fish, &c.] Perhaps in later times prose has obtained a triumph over poetry, though in one of its meanest departments; for all dying speeches, confessions, narratives of murders, executions, &c. seem anciently to have been written in verse. Whoever was hanged or burnt, a merry, or a lamentable ballad (for both epithets are occasionally bestowed on these compositions) was immediately entered on the books of the Company of Stationers. Thus, in a subsequent scene of this play: “Such a deal of wonder is broken out within this hour, that ballad-makers cannot be able to express it.” Steevens.
- Of a fish, that appeared upon the coast,-it was thought she was a woman,] In 1604 was entered on the books of the Stationers' Company: “ A strange reporte of a monstrous fish that ap
M. Or thou go'st to the grange, or mill:
A. Neither. D. What, neither? A. Neither.
Then, whither go'st? say, whither? Clo. We 'll have this song out anon by ourselves; My father and the gentlemen are in sado talk, and we 'll not trouble them: Come, bring away thy pack after me. Wenches, I 'll buy for you both: Pedler, let's have the first choice.- Follow me, girls. Aut. And you shall pay well for 'em. [Aside.
Will you buy any tape,
Or lace for your cape,
Any silk, any thread,
Any toys for your head,
Come to the pedler ;
Money 's a medler,
[Exeunt Clo. Aut. Dor. and Mop.
peared in the form of a woman, from her waist upward, seene in the sea.” To this it is highly probable that Shakspeare alludes.
Malone. See The Tempest, Vol. II, p. 81, n. 8. Steevens.
for she would not exchange flesh -] i. e. because. Reed. So, in Othello: “ Haply, for I am black.” Malone.
sad -] For serious. Fohnson. So, in Much Ado about Nothing :-"hand in hand, in sad conference.” Steevens.
1 That doth utter all men's ware-a,] To utter. To bring out, or produce. Fohnson.
To utter is a legal phrase often made use of in law proceedings and Acts of Parliament, and signifies to vend by retail. From many instances I shall select the first which occurs. Stat. 21, Jac. I, c. 3, declares that the provisions therein contained shall not prejudice certain letters patent or commission granted to a corporation “concerning the licensing of the keeping of any ta. vern or taverns, or selling, uttering, or retailing of wines to be drunk or spent in the mansion-house of the party so selling or ut. tering the same." Reed.
See Minshieu's Dict. 1617 : “ An utterance, or sale." Malone.
Enter a Servant. Serv. Master, there is three carters, three shepherds, three neat-herds, three swine-herds, 2 that have made themselves all men of hair;3 they call themselves sal
2 Master, there are three carters, three shepherds, three neat-herd's, and three swine-herds,] Thus all the printed copies hitherto. Now, in two speeches after this, these are called four threes of herdsmen. But could the carters properly be called herdsmen? At least, they have not the final syllable, herd, in their names; which, I believe, Shakspeare intended all the four threes should have. I therefore guess he wrote :- Master, there are three goat-herds, &c. And so, I think, we take in the four species of cattle usually tended by herdsmen. Theobald.
all men of hair;] Men of hair, are hairy men, or satyrs. A dance of satyrs was no unusual entertainment in the middle ages. At a great festival celebrated in France, the king and some of the bles personated satyrs dressed in close habits, tufted or shagged all over, to imitate hair. They began a wild dance, and in the tumult of their merriment one of them went too near a candle and set fire to his satyr's garb, the fame ran instantly over the loose tufts, and spread itself to the dress of those that were next bim; a great number of the dancers were cruelly scorched, being neither able to throw off their coats nor extinguish them. The king had set himself in the lap of the dutohess of Burgundy, who threw her robe over him and saved him. Fohnson.
The curious reader, who wishes for more exact information relative to the foregoing occurrence in the year 1392, may consult the translation of Froissart's Chronicle, by Johan Bourchier knyght, lorde Berners, &c. 1525, Vol. II, cap. C.xcii, fo. CCxliii : “Of the aduenture of a daunce that was made at Parys in lykenesse of wodehowses, wherein the Frenche kynge was in parell of dethe." Steevens.
Melvil's Memoirs, p. 152, edit. 1735, bear additional testimony to the prevalence of this species of mummery:
During their abode, (that of the embassadors who assembled to congratulate Mary Queen of Scots on the birth of her son) at Stirling, there was daily banqueting, dancing, and triumph. And at the principal banquet there fell out a great grudge among the Englishmen: for a Frenchman called Bastian devised a number of men formed like satyrs, with long tails, and whips in their hands, running before the meat, which was brought through the great hall upon a machine or engine, marching as appeared alone, with musicians clothed like maids, singing, and playing upon all sorts of instruments. But the satyrs were not content only to make way or room, but put their hands behind them to their tails, which they wagged with their hands in such sort, as the Englishmen supposed it had been devised and done