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Into some covert : take your sweetheart's hat,
I see, the play so lies,
Should I now meet my father,
Nay, you shall have no hat:Come, lady, come.-Farewell, my friend. Aut.
Adieu, sir. Flo. O Perdita, what have we twain forgot'? Pray you, a word.
[They converse apart. Cam. What I do next, shall be, to tell the king
Fortune speed us !
[Exeunt FLORIZEL, PERDITA, and CAMILLO. Aut. I understand the business, I hear it: To have an open ear, a quick eye, and a nimble hand, is necessary for a cut-purse ; a good nose is requisite
over you,] You, which seems to have been accidentally omitted in the old copy, was added by Mr. Rowe. MALONE.
what have we twain forgot?] This is one of our author's dramatic expedients to introduce a conversation apart, account for a sudden exit, &c. So, in The Merry Wives of Windsor, Dr. Caius suddenly exclaims-"Qu'ay j'oublié?"-and Mrs. Quickly “Out upon't! what have I forgot " STØEVENS.
also, to smell out work for the other senses. I see, this is the time that the unjust man doth thrive. What an exchange had this been, without boot ? what a boot is here, with this exchange ? Sure, the gods do this year connive at us, and we may do any thing extempore. The prince himself is about a piece of iniquity; stealing away from his father, with his clog at his heels : If I thought it were a piece of honesty to acquaint the king withal, I would not do’t’: I hold it the more knavery to conceal it: and therein am I constant to my profession.
Enter Clown and Shepherd. Aside, aside ;-here is more matter for a hot brain: Every lane's end, every shop, church, session, hanging, yields a careful man work.
Clo. See, see; what a man you are now! there
If I thought it were a piece of honesty to acquaint the king withal, I would not do't.] The reasoning of Autolycus is obscure, because something is suppressed. The prince,' says he, . is about a bad action, he is stealing away from his father : If I thought it were a piece of honesty to acquaint the king, I would not do it, because that would be inconsistent with
my profession of a knave; but I know that the betraying the prince to the king would be a piece of knavery with respect to the prince, and therefore I might, consistently with my character, reveal that matter to the king, though a piece of honesty to him :' however, I hold it a greater knavery to conceal the prince's scheme from the king, than to betray the prince; and therefore in concealing it, I am still constant to my profession.-Sir T. Hanmer and all the subsequent editors read"If I thought it were not a piece of honesty, &c. I would do it:" but words seldom stray from their places in so extraordinary a manner at the press : nor indeed do perceive any need of change. Malone.
I have left Sir T. Hanmer's reading in the text, because in my opinion, our author, who wrote merely for the stage, must have designed to render himself intelligible without the aid of so long an explanatory clause as Mr. Malone's interpretation demands.
is no other way, but to tell the king she's a changeling, and none of your flesh and blood.
SHEP. Nay, but hear me.
Clo. She being none of your flesh and blood, your flesh and blood has not offended the king ; and, so, your flesh and blood is not to be punished by him. Show those things you found about her; those secret things, all but what she has with her : This being done, let the law go whistle; I warrant you.
Shep. I will tell the king all, every word, yea, and his son's pranks too ; who, I may say, is no honest man neither to his father, nor to me, to go about to make me the king's brother-in-law.
Clo. Indeed, brother-in-law was the furthest off you could have been to him; and then your blood had been the dearer, by I know how much an ounce Aut. Very wisely; puppies !
[Aside. SHEP. Well; let us to the king; there is that in this fardel, will make him scratch his beard.
Aur. I know not what impediment this complaint may be to the flight of my master.
Clo. 'Pray heartily he be at palace.
Aut. Though I am not naturally honest, I am so sometimes by chance :-Let me pocket up my pedler's excrement*.-[Takes off his false beard.] How now, rusticks, whither are you bound?
and then your blood had been the dearer, by I know how much an ounce,] I suspect that a word was omitted at the press. We might, I think, safely read~" by I know not how much an ounce." Sir T. Hanmer, I find, had made the same emendation.
MALONE. - pedler's EXCREMENT.] Is pedler's beard. Johnson. So, in the old tragedy of Soliman and Perseda, 1599 :
Shep. To the palace, an it like your worship.
Aut. Your affairs there? what ? with whom ? the condition of that fardel, the place of your dwelling, your names, your ages, of what having”, breeding, and any thing that is fitting to be known, discover.
Clo. We are but plain fellows, sir.
Aut. A lie; you are rough and hairy: Let me have no lying; it becomes none but tradesmen, and they often give us soldiers the lie : but we pay them for it with stamped coin, not stabbing steel; therefore they do not give us the lie .
Clo. Your worship had like to have given us one, if you had not taken yourself with the manner 7.
SHEP. Are you a courtier, an't like you, sir ?
Aut. Whether it like me, or no, I am a courtier. See'st thou not the air of the court, in these enfoldings ? hath not my gait in it, the measure of the court 8 ? receives not thy nose court-odour from me ? reflect I not on thy baseness, court-contempt?
“ Whose chin bears no impression of manhood,
“ Not a hair, not an excrement.” Again, in Love's Labour's Lost :
dally with my excrement, with my mustachio." Again, in The Comedy of Errors: “Why is time such a niggard of his hair, being, as it is, so plentiful an excrement."
Steevens. 5 of what haying,] i. e. estate, property. So, in The Merry Wives of Windsor : “ The gentleman is of no having."
STEEVENS. therefore they do not give us the lie.] The meaning is, they are paid for lying, therefore they do not give us the lie, they sell it ús.
Johnson. with the manner.] In the fact. See vol. iv. p. 292, n. 6.
STEEVENS. -hath ..t my gait in it, the MEASURE of the court ?] i. e. the stately tread of courtiers. See Much Ado about Nothing, Act II. Sc. I. : “ – the wedding mannerly modest, as a measure full of state and ancientry." MALONE.
Think'st thou, for that I insinuate, or toze from thee thy business, I am therefore no courtier? I am courtier, cap-a-pè; and one that will either push on, or pluck back thy business there : whereupon I command thee to open thy affair.
Shep. My business, sir, is to the king.
Clo. Advocate's the court-word for a pheasant'; say, you have none.
-insinuate, OR TOZE -] The first folio reads—at toaze ; the second-or toaze.
To teaze, or toze, is to disentangle wool or flax. Autolycus adopts a phraseology which he supposes to be intelligible to the Clown, who would not have understood the word insinuate, without such a comment on it. STEVENS.
To insinuate, I believe, means here, to cajole, to talk with condescension and humility. So, in our author's Venus and Adonis :
“ With death she humbly doth insinuate,
“ His victories, bis triumphs, and his glories." The word touze is used in Measure for Measure, in the same sense as here :
We'll touze you joint by joint, « But we will know this purpose.' To touse, says Minsheu, is, to pull, to tug. MALONE.
To insinuate, and to tease, or toaze, are opposite. The former signifies to introduce itself obliquely into a thing, and the latter to get something out that was knotted up in it. Milton has used each word in its proper sense :
close the serpent sly
Comus, 1. 749. Henley. ADVOCATE's the court-word for a PHEASANT ;] As he was a suitor from the country, the Clown supposes his father should have brought a present of game, and therefore imagines, when Autolycus asks him what advocate he has, that by the word advocate he means a pheasant. STEVENS.