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there were plenty to be found in the older can be more absurd than Chalmers's attempt plays. Gosson, in 1581, thus writes :- to make us believe that, because the King of “Sometimes you shall see nothing but the Naples is inconsolable for the supposed loss adventures of an amorous knight, passing of Ferdinand, there is an allusion to the death from country to country for the love of his of Frince Henry in 1612; that the line lady, encountering many a terrible monster, “Like poison given to work a great time after" made of brown paper, and at his return is
plainly refers to the murder of Sir Thomas so wonderfully changed that he cannot be
Ovcrbury in the same year; and that a great known but by some posy in his tablet, or by
storm which happened in January, 1613, a broken ring, or a handkerchief, or a piece
gave the appropriate name to this adof a cockle-shell.” Sir Philip Siduey ridi
mirable drama!” cules the appearance of a hideous monster,
In the ' Essays' of Montaigne, as transwith fire and smoke.” Much older theatreslated by Ilorio, there is the following than the Globe were furnished with their
passage: thunder and lightning. Iu 1572 Jolm Izarde,
“Me seemeth that what in those nations we according to an entry in the accounts of the
see by experience doth not only exceed all the revels at court, was paid for a device for
pictures where with licentious poesy hath proudly “counterfeiting thunder and lightning."*
embellished the golden age, and all her quaint It is as likely that thrones descended in inventions to feigu a happy condition of man, other plays besides "The Tempest,' as it is but also the conception and desire of philosophy. certain that in "The Tempest’ Juno descended They could not imagine a genuitie so pure and with a classical fitness of which Jonson has simple as we see it by experience; nor ever be given us many similar examples in his own lieve our society might be maintained with so masks. We can sce nothing in these cir- little art and human combination. It is a nation, cumstances to connect the date of “The would I answer Plato, that hath no kind of traffic, Tempest' with that of Ben Jonson's 'Every no knowledge of letters, no intelligence of numMan in his Humour.'
bers, no name of magistrates, nor of politic The third point upon which Ir. Hunter superiority; no use of service, of riches, or of relies for fixing the date of “The Tempest,' poverty; no contracts, no successions, no dias of 1596, is deduced from the passage in
vidences; no occupation, but idle; no respect of the third act where Gonzalo laughs at the kindred, but common; no apparel, but natural ; stories of “men whose heads stood in their
no manuring of lands; no use of wine, corn, or breasts."
metal. The very words that import lying, falseRaleigh told this story, in his
hood, treason, dissimulation, covetousness, envy, account of his voyage to Guiana, in 1595.
detraction, and pardon, were never heard amongst Shakspere makes Othello, not in a boasting them. How dissonant would he find his imaor lying spirit, but with the confiding belief ginary commonwealth from this perfection!” that belonged to his own high nature, tell
This extract establishes beyond all possible Desdemona of
doubt that the lines of Gonzalo, " The Anthropophagi, and men whose heads
“'the commonwealth I would by contraries Do grow beneath their shoulders."
Execute all things," &c.Would Mr. Hunter contend that this second
were founded upon Montaigne, and upon notice of “men whose heads do grow beneath
Florio's translation. That translation was their shoulders” fixes the date of · Oihello,'
not published before 1603. But portions of as well as that of "The Tempest,' in 1596 ?
it had been seen in manuscript, says Mr. Such circumstances are, as we believe, of the
Hunter. Sir William Cornwallis mentions very slightest value. The argument may be
in his “Essays' that “divers of his pieces I put ingeniously and learnedly, as Mr. Hunter puts it; or it may be rendered ludicrous, as
have seen translated," and he describes Chalmers renders it. What, for example, Cornwallis were not printed till 1600; but
Florio as the translator. The “Essays' of * Collier, ' Annals of the Stage,' vol. iii. p. 370.
they, also, had been seen in manuscript ;
and so Cornwallis might have written about and hopeless of any succour, most of them were “divers parts” of Florio’s ‘Montaigne' before gone to sleep, yielding themselves to the mercy 1596; and Shakspere might have read this of the sea, being all very desirous to die upon identical part of Florio's · Montaigne' before any shore wheresoever. Sir George Sommers, 1596; and thus the dates both of Cornwallis's sitting at the stern, seeing the ship desperate of and Florio's books go for nothing in this relief, looking every minute when the ship inquiry. Is this evidence ?
would sink, he espied land, which, according to The date of Shakspere's "Tempest' has his and Captain Newport's opinion, they judged been a fertile subject for the exercise of which islands were, of all nations, said and sup
it should be that dreadful coast of the Bermudas, critical conjecture. Malone writes a pam
posed to be enchanted, and inhabited with phlet of sixty pages upon it; Chalmers witches and devils, which grew by reason of another pamphlet somewhat longer. The accustomed monstrous thunder-storm and temfirst has been reprinted in Boswell's edition ; pest near unto those islands; also for that the the other costs as much as a manuscript in whole coast is so wonderous dangerous of rocks the days before printing. It is worth the that few can approach them but with unspeakmoney, however, for a quiet laugh. The two able hazard of shipwreck. Sir George Sommers, critics differ very slightly in their opinions Sir Thomas Gates, Captain Newport, and the as to the date of the comedy ; but their rest, suddenly agreed of two evils to choose the proofs are essentially different. Malone least, and so, in a kind of desperate resolution, contends for 1611, holding that “the storm directed the ship mainly for these islands, which, by which Sir George Sommers was ship-by God's divine providence, at a high water ran wrecked on the island of Bermuda, in 1609, right between two strong rocks, where it stuck unquestionably gave rise to Shakspeare's fast without breaking, which gave leisure and * Tempest,' and suggested to him the title, as
good opportunity for them to hoist out their well as some incidents." The whole rela- boat, and to land all their people, as well sailors tion is contained in the additions to Stow's
as soldiers and others, in good safety; and being 'Annals' by Howes :
come ashore they were soon refreshed and
cheered, the soil and air being most sweet and “In the year 1609 the Adventurers and delicate.” Company of Virginia sent from London a fleet of eight ships, with people to supply and make
Here we have a storm, a wreck, the Berstrong the colony in Virginia; Sir Thomas mudas, and an enchanted island; and, in Gates being general, in a ship of 300 tons: in other descriptions of the same event, we have this ship was also Sir George Sommers, who was
mention of a sea-monster. “Nothing can be admiral, and Captain Newport, vice-admiral, more conclusive, then,” says Malone, “that and with them about 160 persons. This ship the date of the play is fixed, with uncommon was ' Admiral,' and kept company with the rest precision, between the end of the year 1610 of the fleet to the height of 30 degrees; and, and the autumn of 1611." No, says Chalmers, being then assembled to consult touching divers the shipwreck of Sir George Sommers did matters, they were surprised with a most extreme suggest the incidents; but Malone himself violent storm, which scattered the whole fleet, had admitted that there was a great tempest yet all the rest of the fleet bent their course for
at home in 1612;—“ the author availed Virginia, where, by God's special favour, they himself of a circumstance then fresh in the arrived safely; but this great ship, though new,
minds of his audience, by affixing a title to and far stronger than any of the rest, fell into a great leak, so as mariners and passengers were
it which was more likely to excite curiosity forced, for three days' space, to do their utmost
than any other that he could have chosen, to save themselves from sudden sinking: but while, at the same time, it was sufficiently notwithstanding their incessant pumping, and justified by the subject of the drama.” casting out of water by buckets and all other “Now this tempest,” says Chalmers, “hapmeans, yet the water covered all the goods pened at Christmas 1612; and so the play within the hold, and all men were utterly tired, could not have been written in the summer and spent in strength, and overcome with labour; 1 of 1612.” Surely all this is admirable fooling,
which is scarcely necessary to say is put an may call it), no island, as far as I know, had end to by the certainty that the play existed a better claim to be regarded as the island in 1611. In such minute inquiries, all as- of Prospero than Bermuda.” That island is suming that poetry is to be dealt with by the Lampedusa. “Did we not know," he consame laws as chronology, or geography, or tinues, “how much still remains to be done any other exact branch of knowledge, there in the criticism of these plays, it would be can be nothing but perpetual mistake, and scarcely credible that no one seems to have contradiction, and false inference. Chalmers, thought of tracing the line of Alonso’s track, in some respects acute enough, has, through or of speculating, with the map before him, 'on the indulgence of these propensities for the island on which Prospero and Miranda making poetry literal, fallen into the mistake may be supposed to have been cast.” Lamof imagining that Bermuda was the scene of pedusa is the island : “ It lies midway * The Tempest.' Mr. Hunter says,
“ No between Malta and the African coast;”. editor of Shakspeare has ever gone so far as " in its dimensions Lampedusa is what we to represent the island of Bermuda as actually, may imagine Prospero's island to have been ; the scene of this play;" but he adds, “ Chal- in circuit thirteen miles and a half;”-it is mers has given some encouragement to this situated in a stormy sea;"—it is “a very prevalent mistake.” Encouragement ? deserted island;" it has the reputation of He says, in his 'Apology, and repeats the “ being enchanted.” Can anything be more passage in his rare tract *, “ Our maker decisive ? “ What I contend for is the abshowed great judgment in causing, by en- solute claim of Lampedusa to have been the chantment, the king's ship to be wrecked on the island in the poet's mind when he drew the still-vex'd Bermoothes.” Again, “Stephano scenes of this drama.” The matter, according became king of the still-vex'd Bermoothes.” to Mr. Hunter, is beyond all doubt." In the Lastly, in the ' Another Account,'—" If it rocks of Lampedusa there are hollows ;' be asked what circumstance it was which Caliban is stied in the “hard rock;” in induced our dramatist to think of Bermudas, Lampedusa there was a hermit's cell—"this in 1613, as the scene of his comedy, the answer cell is surely the origin of the cell of must be that the Bermudas, which had been Prospero :" Caliban's employment was colconsidered, ever since the publication, in lecting firewood ;—“Malta is supplied with 1596, of Sir Walter Raleigh's description of firewood from Lampedusa." Mr. Hunter asks Guiana, as a 'hellish sea for thunder, light- his friend “whether you would think me prening, and storms,' was first planted, in 1612, sumptuous in requiring that in future editions by a ship called the Plough, from the of these plays there should be, in the accusThames, which carried out a colony of a tomed place, at the foot of the dramatis hundred and sixty persons.” The nonsense
personæ, the words of this notion is self-evident. If the Ber
'SCENE, LAMPEDUSA.' mudas were the scene, Ariel must have out- We have not so determined the scene. We done himself to convey
" the rest of the believe that the poet had no locality whatfleet" over the Atlantic, to place them ever in his mind, just as he had no notion of “upon the Mediterranean flote ;” and, on the any particular storm. Tempests and encontrary, he would have been a mere human chanted islands are of the oldest materials carrier if he had been called up from one
Mr. Hunter says Shakspere had “deep nook” of the island “to fetch dew” | Ariosto's description of a storm in his mind. from some other part. This will not quite Who, we may ask, suggested to Ariosto his fit. And so we must resort to another geo- description ? Has any one fixed the date of graphical system. Mr. Hunter has discovered | Ariosto's storm ? Has not the poet described “another island," which he thus intro- the poet's office ?duces : -“I must do the old critics the “ The poet's eye, in a fine frenzy rolling, justice to say that, till this discovery (such I Doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth And, as imagination bodies forth
*. Another Account of the Incidents,' &c., 1815.
dramas, in the beginning of the seventeenth The forms of things unknown, the poet's pen century. Some are clearly derived from Turns them to shapes, and gives to airy no- English models ; and Mr. Thoms thinks that thing
an old play, on which Shakspere founded A local habitation and a name.'
* The Tempest,' is translated in Ayrer's Franz Horn asks whether Prospero left Cali- works, published in 1618. ban to govern the island ? We believe the
« « The origin of the plot of “The Tempest" island sunk into the sea, and was no more is for the present a Shakspearean mystery,' are seen, after Prospero broke his staff and the words of our friend Mr. Hunter, in his drowned his book.
learned and interesting dissertation upon that
play. That mystery, however, I consider as There is a very curious story told by War- solved, --Tieck appears to entertain no doubt ton, of poor Collins informing him, during upon the subject,--and I hope to bring the his mental aberration, that he had seen a
matter before you in such a manner as will romance which contained the story of “The satisfy you of the correctness of Tieck's views in Tempest.'—
this respect. But to the point. Shakspeare
unquestionably derived bis idea of “The Tem"I was informed by the late Mr. Collins, of pest' from an earlier drama, now not known to Chichester, that Shakspeare's 'Tempest, for exist, but of which a German version is preserved which no origin is yet assigned, was founded on in Ayrer's play, entitled “Die Schöne Sidea' a romance called 'Amelia and Isabella,' printed (The Beautiful Sidea); and the proof of this fact in Italian, Spanish, French, and English, in is to be found in the points of resemblance 1588. But, though this information has not between the two plays, which are far too striking proved true on examination, a useful conclusion and peculiar to be the result of accident. may be drawn from it, that Shakspeare's story “ It is true that the scene in which Ayrer's is somewhere to be found in an Italian novel; | play is laid, and the names of the personages, at least, that the story preceded Shakspeare. differ from those of “The Tempest;' but the Mr. Collins had searched this subject with no main incidents of the two plays are all but less fidelity than judgment and industry; but, identically the same. For instance, in the his memory failing in his last calamitous indis
German drama, Prince Ludolph and Prince position, he probably gave me the name of one Leudegast supply the places of Prospero and novel for another. I remember he added a cir
Alonso. Ludolph, like Prospero, is a magician, cumstance which may lead to a discovery, that and like him has an only daughter, Sidca—the the principal character of the romance answer- Miranda of “The Tempest'-and an attendant ing to Shakspere's ‘Prospero' was a chemical spirit, Runcifal, who, though not strictly renecromancer, who had bound a spirit like Ariel sembling either Ariel or Caliban, may well be to obey his call and perform his services." considered as the primary type which suggested
to the nimble fancy of our great dramatist those Mr. Thoms, in a very interesting paper on strongly yet admirably contrasted beings. the 'Early English and German Dramas,' Shortly after the commencement of the play, has given, from Tieck, an account of certain Ludolph, having been vanquished by his rival, early productions of English dramatists which and with his daughter Sidea driven into a were translated into German about the year forest, rebukes her for complaining of their 1600. We cannot here enter into the very change of fortune, and then summons his spirit curious question whether an English com
Runcifal to learn from him their future destiny, pany performed English plays in Germany and prospects of revenge. Runcifal, who is, like at that period ; but it is quite certain that Ariel, somewhat ‘moody,' announces to Ludolph some of our earliest dramas were either that the son of his enemy will shortly become translated or adapted for the German stage his prisoner. After a comic episode, most proat this early period. Jacob Ayrer, a notary bably introduced by the German, we see Prince of Nürnburg, was the author of thirty dinand of "The Tempest'—and the councillors,
Leudegast, with his son Engelbrecht-the Fer* New Monthly Magazine,' January 1, 1841. hunting in the same forest; when Engelbrecht
and his companion Famulus, having separated | ingenious and witty mind, full of fun, and was from their associates, are suddenly encountered so successful both in tragedy and comedy, that by Ludolph and his daughter. He commands he could move an Heraclitus to laughter, and a them to yield themselves prisoners—they refuse, Democritus to tears.'" and try to draw their swords, when, as Prospero
So much has been written on 'The Temtells Ferdinand,
pest,' and so unnecessary is it for us to 'I can here disarm thee with this stick,
analyse the plot or dwell on the charms of And make thy weapon drop,'
the poetry, that we shall here content ourso Ludolph, with his wand, keeps their swords selves with presenting our readers with some in their scabbards, paralyses Engelbrecht, and brief extracts, having reference to the prinmakes him confess his
cipal characters, translated from the ‘ShakNerves are in their infancy again, speres Schauspiele erläutert of Franz Horn. And have no vigour in them,'
“In Prospero we have a delineation of and, when he has done so, gives him over as a peculiar profundity. He was, once, not altoslave to Sidea, to carry logs for her.
gether a just prince, not thoroughly a just “ The resemblance between this scene and the man; but he had the disposition to be both. parallel scene in “The Tempest' is rendered His soul thirsted after knowledge; his mind, still more striking in a late part of the play, sincere in itself, after love; and his fancy, when Sidea, moved by pity for the labours of after the secrets of nature : but he forgot, Engelbrecht, in carrying logs, declares to him,
what a prince should least of all forget, that, 'I am your wife, if you will marry me,' upon this moving earth, superior acquire an event which, in the end, is happily brought ments, in order to stand firmly, must be about, and leads to the reconciliation of their exercised carefully; that the world is full of parents, the rival princes.”
enemies who can only be subdued by a
watchful power and prudence, and that in It appears not the least extraordinary
certain situations the armour ought never to circumstance in this extraordinary question
be put off. Thus it became easy for his of literary history, that Ayrer did not translate some of Shakspere's own works, par
nearest relation, his brother, with the help
of a powerful neighbouring king who could ticularly those which existed in printed
not resist the offered but unjustifiable adcopies. Shakspere, according to Eschenburg,
vantage, to depose him from his dukedom. was not known in Germany, as far as can
But as the pure morals of the prince, alcollected from any mention in books, till
though they were perhaps but lazily exercised nearly the close of the 17th century.
in behalf of his subjects, had nevertheless “The first German author who has given a acquired their love, and the usurper not thought to Shakspere is perhaps Morhof, whose daring to make an attack on the lives of the Instructions in the German Language' was first fallen, Prospero saved himself, his daughter, printed in 1682. Towards the end of the fourth
and a part of his magical books, upon a chapter, 'On the Poetry of the English,' he is desert island. Here he becomes, what, in its merely named, and Morhof acknowledges that
highest sense, he had not yet been, a father he had himself seen nothing of his, or of Beau
and prince. His knowledge extends. Nature mont and Fletcher's. Not very long afterwards, Benthem, our poet, mentions him in his 'State know and love her more inwardly. Zephyr
listens to him, perhaps because he learned to of the English Schools and Churches,' in chap. xix., among the leading literary characters of like spirits, full of a tender frolicsome England. But all he says of him, and that humour, and rude earth-born gnomes, are perhaps only for the first time in the second compelled to serve him. The whole island edition, is the following, which is droll enough: is full of wonders, but only such as the fancy
William Shakspeare was born at Stratford in willingly receives, of sounds and songs, of Warwickshire; his learning was very little, and merry helpers and comical tormentors; and therefore it is the more a matter of wonder that
• • Johan Joachim Eschenburg, über W. Shakspeare,' he should be a very exceilent poet. He had an new edit., Zürich, 1906, p. 407.