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Sit still, and hear the last of our sea-sorrow.
Here in this island we arriv'd; and here
Have I, thy school-master, made thee more profit
Than other princes' can, that have more time
For vainer hours, and tutors not so careful.
Mira. Heavens thank you for't! And now, I

pray you, sir,
(For still 'tis beating in my mind,) your reason
For raising this sea-storm ?

Know thus far forth.-
By accident most strange, bountiful fortune,
Now my dear lady', hath mine enemies
Brought to this shore: and by my prescience
I find my zenith doth depend upon
A most auspicious star; whose influence
If now I court not, but omit”, my fortunes
Will ever after droop.--Here cease more questions;
Thou art inclin'd to sleep ; 'tis a good dulness,

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the story is done. Prospero, surprized that his charm does not yet work, bids her sit still ; and then enters on fresh matter to amuse the time, telling her (what she knew before) that he had been her tutor, &c. But soon perceiving her drowsiness coming on, he breaks off abruptly, and leaves her still sitting to her slumbers.

As the words—"now I arise may signify, now I rise in
my narration,"—“now my story heightens in its consequence,” I
have left the passage in question undisturbed. We still say, that
the interest of a drama rises or declines. STEEVENS.

9 — princes —] The first folio reads—princesse. Henley.
Corrected by Mr. Rowe. MALONE.
Now my dear lady,] i. e. now my auspicious mistress.

STEEVENS. 2 I find


zenith doth depend upon
A most auspicious star ; whose influence
If now I court not, but omit, &c.] So, in Julius Cæsar :

“ There is a tide in the affairs of man,
“ Which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune ;
Omitted, all the voyage of their life

“ Is bound in shallows and in miseries.”. MALONE.
3 — 'tis a good dulness,] Dr. Warburton rightly observes,
that this sleepiness, which Prospero by his art had brought upon

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And give it way;— I know thou can'st not choose.

[MIRANDA sleeps. Come away, servant, come: I am ready now; Approach, my Ariel ; come.

Enter ARIEL. ARI. All hail, great master! grave sir, hail ! I


To answer thy best pleasure; be't to fly *,
To swim, to dive into the fire, to ride
On the curl'd clouds 5; to thy strong bidding, task
Ariel, and all his quality.

Hast thou, spirit, Perform'd to point? the tempest that I bade thee?


Miranda, and of which he knew not how soon the effect would begin, makes him question her so often whether she is attentive to his story. Johnson. 4 All hail, great master ! grave sir, hail ! I To answer thy best pleasure; be’t to fly, &c.]

Imitated by Fletcher, in The Faithful Shepherdess :

tell me sweetest,
6. What new service now is meetest
“ For the satyre; shall I stray
• In the middle ayre, and stay
“ The sailing racke, or nimbly take
“ Hold by the moone, and gently make
“Suit to the pale queene of night,
“ For a beame to give thee light ?
“ Shall I dive into the sea,
“ And bring thee coral, making way.

Through the rising waves,” &c. Henley.
s On the curl'd clouds ;] So, in Timon-Crisp heaven.

STEEVENS. 6 - and all his QUALITY.] i. e. all his confederates, all who are of the same profession. So, in Hamlet :

“ Come give us a taste of your quality.See vol. vii. p. 293, n. 3. STEEVENS.

7 Perform'd to point -] i. e. to the minutest article ; a literal translation of the French phrase-a point. So, in The Chances, by Beaumont and Fletcher :

are you all fit ? “ To point, sir."

Ari. To every article.
I boarded the king's ship; now on the beaks,
Now in the waist, the deck, in every cabin,
I flam'd amazement: Sometimes, I'd divide,
And burn in many places"; on the top-mast,




Thus, in Chapman's version of the second book of Homer's Odyssey, we have


Perform’d to full :" STEEVENS.

now on the BEAK,] The beak was a strong pointed body at the head of the ancient gallies; it is used here for the forecastle, or the boltsprit. Johnson.

So in Philemon Holland's translation of the 2d chapter of the 32d book of Pliny's Natural History:-“our goodly tall and proud ships, so well armed in the beake-head with yron pikes,” &c.

STEEVENS. 9 Now in the WAIST,] The part between the quarter-deck and the forecastle. JOHNSON.

Sometimes, I'd divide, And burn in many places ;] Perhaps our author, when he wrote these lines, remembered the following passage in Hackluyt's Voyages, 1598 : “ I do remember that in the great and boysterous storme of this foule weather, in the night there came upon the toppe of our maine yard and maine-mast a certaine little light, much like unto the light of a little candle, which the Spaniards call the Cuerpo Santo. This light continued aboord our ship about three houres, flying from maste to maste, and from top to top; and sometimes it would be in two or three places at once."

So also De Loier, speaking of “strange sights happening in the seas,” Treatise of Spectres, 4to. 1605, p. 67, Sometimes they shall see the fire which the saylors call Saint Hermes, to fly uppon their shippe, and to alight upon the toppe of the mast ; and sometimes they shall perceive a wind that stirreth such stormes as will run round about their shippe, and play about it in such sort, as by the hurling and beating of the clowdes will rayse uppe a fire that will burne uppe the yardes, the sayles, and the tacklings of the shippe."

While the English lay at the Bermudas, in their way to Virginia, [that is, in the year 1609 and part of 1610, when they were shipwrecked there] says Harris from the memoirs of Smith, Norwood and Strachie, si there was an extraordinary halo seen, and the thunder and lightning that followed upon it, was such as almost frighted them out of their wits.” MALONE.

Burton says, that the Spirits of fire, in form of fire-drakes and




The yards and bowsprit, would I flame distinctly, Then meet, and join : Jove's lightnings, the pre


O'the dreadful thunder-claps , more momentary And sight-out-running were not: The fire, and

cracks Of sulphurous roaring, the most mighty Neptune Seem'd to besiege, and make his bold waves trem

ble, Yea, his dread trident shake 3. PRO.

My brave spirit! Who was so firm, so constant, that this coil Would not infect his reason ? ARI.

Not a soul But felt a fever of the mad", and play'd Some tricks of desperation : All, but mariners, Plung'd in the foaming brine, and quit the vessel",


blazing stars, “oftentimes sit on ship-masts,” &c. Melanch. Part 1. 82, p. 30, edit. 1632. T. WARTON.

O'the dreadful thunder-claps.] So, in King Lear :
“ 'Vant couriers of oak-cleaving thunderbolts."

STEEVENS. 3 Yea, his dread trident shake.] Lest the metre should appear defective, it is necessary to apprize the reader, that in Warwickshire and other midland counties, shake is still pronounced by the common people as if it was written shaake, a dissyllable.

FARMER. The word shake is so printed in Golding's version of the 9th book of Ovid's Metamorphoses, edit. 1575: “ Hee quaak’t and shaak’t and looked pale," &c.

Steevens. 4 But felt a fever of the mad,] If it be at all necessary to explain the meaning, it is this : 'Not a soul but felt such a fever as madmen feel, when the frantic fit is upon them.' STEEVENS.

s -and quit the vessel,] Quit is, I think, here used for quitted. See before, p. 36:

they prepar'd
A rotten carcass of a boat, not rigg'd,
“ Nor tackle, sail, nor mast; the very rats
Instinctively had quit it :-" MALONE.

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Then all a-fire with me: the king's son, Ferdinand,
With hair up-staring (then like reeds, not hair,)
Was the first man that leap'd; cried, Hell is empty,
And all the devils are here.

Why, that's my spirit!
But was not this nigh shore ?

Close by, my master.
Pro. But are they, Ariel, safe ?

Not a hair perish'd;
On their sustaining garments not a blemish,
But fresher than before : and, as thou bad'st me,
In troops I have dispers’d them 'bout the isle :
The king's son have I landed by himself;
Whom I left cooling of the air with sighs,
In an odd angle of the isle, and sitting,
His arms in this sad knot.

Of the king's ship,
The mariners, say, how thou hast dispos’d,
And all the rest o' the fleet?

Safely in harbour
Is the king's ship; in the deep nook, where once
Thou call dst me up at midnight to fetch dew
From the still-vex'd Bermoothes?, there she's hid :

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sustaining -] i. e. their garments that bore them up and supported them. Thus, in Chapman's translation of the eleventh Iliad : “ Who fell, and crawled upon the earth with his sustaining

palmes." Again, in King Lear, Act IV. Sc. IV.:

In our sustaining corn.” Again, in Hamlet :

Her clothes spread wide “And, mermaid-like, a while they bore her up." Mr. M. Mason, however, observes that "the word sustaining in this place does not mean supporting, but enduring ; and by their sustaining garments, Ariel means their garments which bore, without being injured, the drenching of the sea." STEVENS.

7 From the still-vex'd BERMOOTHES,] Fletcher, in his Women Pleased, says,

“ The devil should think of purchasing that eggshell to victual out a witch for the Beermoothes." Smith, in his

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