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Arm. I will hereupon confess, I am in love: and, as it is base for a soldier to love, so am I in love with a base wench. If drawing my sword against the humour of affection would deliver me from the reprobate thought of it, I would take Desire prisoner, and ransom him to any French courtier for a new devised courtesy. I think scorn to sigh ; methinks, I should out-swear Cupid.
Comfort me, boy : What great men have been in love ?
Moth. Hercules, master.
The following representation of Bankes and his Horse, is a facsimile from a rude wooden frontispiece to the pamphlet mentioned by Mr. Reed.
Arm. Most sweet Hercules !-More authority, dear boy, name more; and, sweet my child, let them be men of good repute and carriage.
Motu. Sampson, master : he was a man of good carriage, great carriage; for he carried the towngates on his back, like a porter : and he was in love.
ARM. O well-knit Sampson! strong-jointed Sampson! I do excel thee in my rapier, as much as thou did'st me in carrying gates.
I am in love too,-Who was Sampson's love, my dear Moth ?
Moth. A woman, master.
Moth. Of all the four, or the three, or the two; or one of the four.
Arm. Tell me precisely of what complexion ?
Moth. As I have read, sir; and the best of them too.
ARM. Green, indeed, is the colour of lovers 2: but to have a love of that colour, methinks, Sampson had small reason for it. He, surely, affected her for her wit.
Moth. It was so, sir; for she had a green wit.
Arm. My love is most immaculate white and red.
2 Green, indeed, is the colour of LOVERS :] I do not know whether our author alludes to “the rare green eye,” which in his time seems to have been thought a beauty, or to that frequent attendant on love, jealousy, to which, in The Merchant of Venice, and in Othello, he has applied the epithet green-ey'd. Malone.
Perhaps Armado neither alludes to green eyes, nor to jealousy ; but to the willow, the supposed ornament of unsuccessful lovers :
Sing, all a green willow shall be my garland,”, is the burden of an ancient ditty preserved in The Gallery of gorgious Inventions, &c. 4to. 1578. ' Steevens.
Morh. Most maculate thoughts, master, are masked under such colours.
Arm. Define, define, well-educated infant.
Moth. My father's wit, and my mother's tongue, assist me!
ARM. Sweet invocation of a child; most pretty, and pathetical ! Moth. If she be made of white and red,
Her faults will ne'er be known;
And fears by pale-white shown:
By this you shall not know;
Which native she doth owe 5. A dangerous rhyme, master, against the reason of white and red.
Arm. Is there not a ballad, boy, of the King and the Beggar ?
Moth. The world was very guilty of such a ballad some three ages since: but, I think, now 'tis not to be found: or, if it were, it would neither serve for the writing, nor the tune.
3 Most MACULATE thoughts,] So, the first quarto, 1598. The folio has immaculate. To avoid such notes for the future, it may be proper to apprize the reader, that where the reading of the text does not correspond with the folio, without any reason being assigned for the deviation, it is always warranted by the authority of the first quarto.
MALONE. As this intimation would be of no use to reader who is not possessed of the first folio, I have marked the variations.
BosweLL. 4 For BLUSHING -] The original copy has-blush in. The emendation was made by the editor of the second folio. Malone.
5 Which native she doth owe.] i. e. of which she is naturally possessed.- To owe is to possess. So, in Macbeth :
the disposition that I owe." STEEVENS. 6 — the King and the Beggar?] See Dr. Percy's Reliques of Ancient English Poetry, 4th edit. vol. i. p. 198. STEEVENS.
Arm. I will have the subject newly writ o'er, that I may example my digression? by some mighty precedent. Boy, I do love that country girl, that I took in the park with the rational hind Costard ®; she deserves well.
Moth. To be whipped ; and yet a better love than my master.
[ Aside. ARM. Sing, boy; my spirit grows heavy in love.
Moth. And that's great marvel, loving a light wench.
ARM. I say, sing.
Enter Dull, CostaRD, and JAQUENETTA. Dull. Sir, the duke's pleasure is, that you keep Costard safe : and you must let him take no delight, nor no penance; but a' * must fast three days a week : For this damsel, I must keep her at the park ; she is allowed for the day-woman'. Fare
* First folio, he. 7
- my DIGRESSION-] Digression on this occasion signifies the act of going out of the right way, transgression. So, in Romeo and Juliet :
* Thy noble shape is but a form of wax,
Digressing from the valour of a man.” STEEVENS.
my digression is so vile, so base,
the RATIONAL hind Costard ;] Perhaps we should read the irrational hind, &c. TYRWHITT.
The rational hind, perhaps, means only the reasoning brute, the animal with some share of reason. STEEVENS.
I have always read irrational hind ; if hind be taken in its bestial sense, Armado makes Costard a female. FARMER.
Shakspeare uses it in its bestial sense in Julius Cæsar, Act I. Sc. III. and as of the masculine gender :
“ He were no lion, were not Romans hinds." Again, in King Henry IV. Part I. Sc. III. : “ low cowardly hind, and you lie." STEVENS.
- for the day-WOMAN.] “i. e, for the dairy-maid. Dairy,
you are a shal
ARM. I do betray myself with blushing.–Maid.
[Ereunt Dull and JAQUENETTA. ARM. Villain, thou shalt fast for thy offences, ere thou be pardoned.
Cost. Well, sir, I hope, when I do it, I shall do it on a full stomach.
ARM. Thou shalt be heavily punished.
Cost. I am more bound to you, than your fellows, for they are but lightly rewarded.
* First folio, what. says Johnson in his Dictionary, is derived from day, an old word for milk. In the northern counties of Scotland, a dairy-maid is at present termed a day or dey." Edinburgh Magazine, Nov. 1786.
Steevens. 1 That's hereby.] Jaquenetta and Armado are at cross purposes. Hereby is used by her (as among the vulgar in some counties) to signify—as it may happen. He takes it in the sense of just by. Steevens.
2 With that face?] This cant phrase has oddly lasted till the present time; and is used by people who have no more meaning annexed to it, than Fielding had; who putting it into the mouth of Beau Didapper, thinks it necessary to apologize (in a note) for its want of sense, by adding—“ that it was taken verbatim, from very polite conversation.” Steevens.
3 Come, &c.] To this line in the first quarto, and the first folio, Clo. by an error of the press is prefixed, instead of Con. i. e. Constable or Dull. Mr. Theobald made the necessary correction.
Malone, VOL. IV.