« 上一頁繼續 »
most important are the larger parts of Henry's soliloquies in Act II, scenes ii and v, and his speeches in Act IV, scenes vi and viii, with the remainder of Act IV, sc. vi; also much of Gloucester's part in Act III, sc. ii, and some telling lines in Act IV, sc. i; also most of Margaret's speeches before King Louis in Act III, sc. iii, and in Act V, sc. iv, and, finally, the watchmen in Act IV, sc. iii, and the taunts in Act V, sc. i, ll. 48-57.
Frequently the use is discernible which has been made of the very words of the histories. Examples of this are: Rutland "holding up his hands for mercy"; Warwick at Towton, slaying his horse, with the words, "Surely I will tarry with him that will tarry with me"; the battle "uncertainly heaving and setting on both sides" (Holinshed) "in a manner unnatural; for in it the son fought against the father, the brother against the brother," etc. (Halle); and the loyalty of Hastings, who "had married the Earl's sister, yet was ever true to the King his master." Indeed, Act IV, sc. ii-vii keeps singularly close to the authorities.
As to style and diction, there seems little to distinguish the "Third Part of Henry VI" from the "Second" in those characteristics which were noted in it above. Alliteration is much employed in Part III, but in that modified form which was found to prevail in the earlier Part, being most largely used by personages whose utterances have manifestly been elaborated with special care, such as King Henry and Clifford; and this again tallies with the greater apparent frequency of alliteration in Part III as compared with the "True Tragedie," though there is more, or at least more noticeable alliteration in Part I than in either. Part III has more rime than Part II; that in Part III is largely but by no means entirely taken over from the "True Tragedie," and is nearly always to be found at the end of
speeches. The peculiar feature of a repetition of words or sounds, which was noticed above as observable in both Parts I and II, is also to be found in Part III, where it appears in instances reproduced from the "True Tragedie," but with augmentation, Finally, the classical allusions in Part III are for the most part, but not entirely, taken over from the same play. The mannerism of the omitted definite article also occasionally recurs.1 Of more significance, as indicating greater maturity of style, is a certain conscious irony. The phrase (subsequently repeated) "Thou setter up and plucker down of kings," descriptive in Act II, sc. iii, 1. 37 (as in the "True Tragedie ") of the power of the Almighty, is in Act III, sc. iii, I. 157 savagely applied by Queen Margaret to Warwick (this is not in the "True Tragedie "), and again calmly by Warwick to himself (Act V, sc. i, 1. 26; this is substantially in the "True Tragedy"). The sneers in scriptural parlance of Richard of Gloucester (Act I, sc. ii, 1. 18, and Act IV, sc. i, 1. 32) are not in the older play.
Altogether the Third Part, towards its close, suggests a very explicable determination on the part of the author or authors to wind up the action of the play; their adherence to the "True Tragedie" becomes, if possible, more marked than it was before; and there is about the progress towards the end an unmistakeable air of business a desire, not to treat things perfunctorily, but to spend no unnecessary time over them. And yet (this should by no means be overlooked) the reader or spectator is left with a sense of more to come beyond the framework of the play; no doubt is left as to the personage to whom the future will appeal-to whom per
1 So in Act II, sc. i, L. 82: "For selfsame wind that I should speak withal."
haps that future may belong. This personage is not the "sportful" King Edward IV, in whose concluding hope of "lasting joy" little interest can be felt, nor the shifting Clarence-but the prince who seals the bargain of national peace and fraternal concord with a Judas kiss.
In what there remains for me to state here, I have hardly anything to offer in addition to the summary previously attempted by me after a full reconsideration of this complex subject under the light of researches as ample and profound as are to be found in any chapter of Shakespeare criticism. With regard, then, to what seem the most probable conclusions on the question as to the authorship of the Second and Third Parts of "Henry VI," and on the antecedent question as to the authorship of the two old plays of which these two Parts are now generally held to be enlarged and modified reproductions, the following may suffice.1 It has been shown in the preceding pages,
1 The authorities on the subject are in the main the same as those cited in the course of my remarks on Henry VI" in the second edition of my "History of English Dramatic Literature" (1899), Vol. II, pp. 58-74.
Since Malone, the late
Mr. Grant White's" Essay On the Authorship of King Henry the Sixth" (in vol. VII of his edition of the Works of William Shakespeare, Boston, 1859) is the earliest critical contribution of importance to the discussion of the question. His views were put in a shorter form by Mr. G. L. Rives in his Harness Prize Essay on the same subject (Cambridge, 1874); and Mr. Grant White himself summarised them in his "Studies in Shakespeare "(London, 1885), pp. 21 seg. conclusions stated by Mr. F. G. Fleay in his remarkably complete and closely argued paper" Who Wrote Henry VI?" in "Macmillan's Magazine," vol. XXXIII (November, 1875-April, 1876), were repeated, with some important modifications, in his Chronicle History of the Life and Works of William Shakespeare" (London, 1886),—a book which, whatever may be the judgment formed as to some of its conclusions, has a permanent place in the history of English literature. Finally, the subject received the most exhaustive treatment which has yet been given to it, or with which it is likely to meet for a long time to come, in Miss Jane Lee's paper "On the Authorship of the Second and Third Parts of Henry VI," in the "Transactions of the New Shakspere Society " (1876), where, on a suggestion thrown out
more fully than in my own earlier observations on the subject, how very little in the way of actual new matter, as distinct from additions or ornament in the way of expansion and of stylistic improvements, was introduced by the hands to which, on the above assumption, the new versions of the two old plays were due, and how very few corrections of facts, or of the exposition of facts, were made during the process of "beautifying" the text (if Greene's word may be used without prejudice). Thus the difference between the two pairs of plays reduces itself in the main, though not entirely, to a question of form rather than of matter-in other words, to a question of style (including both diction and versification)-a kind of internal evidence which is of all kinds the most difficult to judge, and which has at times proved a very deceptive one to trust.
The problem of the authorship of the Second and Third Parts of "Henry VI" cannot, then, be discussed apart from that of the authorship of the two old plays with which they are respectively connected; but in discussing it we must perforce begin by going back, more especially as on the primary question of the respective priority of the two pairs of plays Mr. Fleay
by Dr. Furnivall in the discussion on her paper, she supplements it by a "Table of Shakspere's and Marlowe's Shares in 2 and 3 Henry VI." Attention may also be directed to Miss Emma Phipson's paper, "The Natural History Similes in Henry VI," in the same Society's "Transactions," 1877-9, and Dr. Furnivall's "Table of parallel animal expressions in the Rape of Lucrece," and in 2 and 3 Henry VI, ib., 1875-6; as well as to the late Mr. R. Simpson's "The Politics of Shakspere's Historical Plays" (V. " Henry VI"), ib., 1874, and (though it has no bearing on the question of authorship) to Mr. P. A. Daniel's "Time Analysis of the Plots of Shakspere's Plays " (III.), ib., 1877-9. Cf. also Mr. A. H. Bullen's Introduction to his Works of Christopher Marlowe" (1885), vol. I, lxxix-lxxxiii, and Professor Churton Collins' General Introduction to his “Works of Robert Greene" (1905), vol. I, pp. 67-69.
is in opposition to the generally received opinion. Malone, Grant White, and Miss Lee, entertain no doubt as to the priority in date of the "Contention" and the "True Tragedie" to the Second and Third Parts of Henry VI;" whereas Mr. Fleay advances the theory that the former two plays "consisted of surreptitious fragments taken down in shorthand at theatrical performances, and patched up by some inferior hack, hired to write additions, or by some strutting player, who interpolated bits of sensation for the groundlings." Now, it cannot be denied that among the additional matter to be found in the two Parts as compared with the other plays a good deal may be described as "poor"; but in all ages of the theatre adapters, especially if their work has to be done in a hurry, are apt not to be overnice in the choice of their patches. Again, it must be allowed that the notorious passage in Greene's "Groatsworth of Wit" can only be regarded as proving that the "Third Part of Henry VI" plagiarised from the "True Tragedie," if we assume as certain that it was a literary plagiarism, not the actor's declamation of other men's compositions, which Greene intended to satirise; and this assumption I agree with Mr. Fleay and the late Mr. R. Simpson (a sure-footed critic, though one who freely used his imagination) in declining to make. If, on the other hand, the passage does refer to a literary plagiarism, then, if Mr. Fleay's theory were correct, Greene would have accused Shakespeare of plagiarising a passage which was itself a plagiarism. Mr. Fleay's arguments from the history of theatrical companies and from that of publishers are too full of conjecture to carry conviction; and we are thus reduced to an issue of comparative probabilities. But could anything be