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To cross my friend in his intended drift,
Pro. Know, noble Lord, they have devis’d a mean
– jealous aim - ] Aim is guess, in this instance, as in the following. So, in Romeo and Juliet :
I aim'd so near when I suppos'd you lov’d.” STEEVENS. So, also, in Othello :
“ Yet in these cases, where the aim reports,
“ 'Tis oft with difference.” Malone. 1 - suggested,] Tempted. This use of the word is frequent in Shakspeare; see before, p. 60. Boswell.
- be not aimed at;] Be not guessed. Johnson.
For love of you, not hate unto my friend,
DUKE. Upon mine honour, he shall never know
[Exit. Enter VALENTINE. DUKE. Sir Valentine, whither away so fast ?
VAL. Please it your grace, there is a messenger That stays to bear my letters to my friends, And I am going to deliver them.
Duke. Be they of much import?
VAL. The tenor of them doth but signify My health, and happy being at your court.
Duke. Nay, then no matter; stay with me awhile; I am to break with thee of some affairs, That touch me near, wherein thou must be secret. 'Tis not unknown to thee, that I have sought To match my friend, sir Thurio, to my daughter. VAL. I know it well, my lord; and sure, the
match Were rich and honourable; besides, the gentle
Is full of virtue, bounty, worth, and qualities]
of this pretence.] Of this claim made to your daughter.
Johnson. Pretence is design. So, in K. Lear: “
- to my affection to your honour, and no other pretence of danger.” Again, in the same play:." - pretence and purpose of unkindness." Steevens.
Upon advice, hath drawn my love from her;
VAL. Win her with gifts, if she respect not words;
And, where -] Where for whereas. It is often so used by our old writers, particularly in the preambles of ancient acts of parliament. Malone.
7 — sir, in Milan, here,] It ought to be thus, instead of -in Verona, here : for the scene apparently is in Milan, as is clear from several passages in the first act, and in the beginning of the first scene of the fourth act. A like mistake has crept into the eighth (fifth] scene of Act II. where Speed bids his fellow-servant Launce welcome to Padua. Pope. The old
“ There is a lady in Verona here,” And the circumstance that the word Verona exactly suits the metre, which is not the case with Milan, seems to indicate that this was an oversight of the youthful authour. Mr. Pope, to make out the verse, was obliged to add sir ; but it is very unlikely that the compositor should have made two blunders of so different a kind in one line. However, to prevent the confusion that would arise from the introduction of Verona here, I have reluctantly followed all the other editions in adopting this emendation. Malone.
the fashion of the time - ] The modes of courtship, the acts by which men recommended themselves to ladies. Johnson.
Dumb jewels often, in their silent kind,
9 Win her with GIFTS, if she respect not WORDS ;
Dumb jewels often, in their silent kind,
More than quick words, do move a woman's mind.) An earlier writer than Shakspeare, speaking of women, has the same unfavourable (and, I hope, unfounded) sentiment :
“ 'Tis wisdom to give much; a gift prevails,
Marlowe's Hero and Leander. Our poet had probably read the popular poem recently before he composed this play. See the next page:
“ Would serve to scale another Hero's tower,
“ So bold Leander would adventure it." See also p. 10, n. 6. To this note in Mr. Steeven's last two editions some passages have been added, for which I am not answerable. I know not where they came from. Malone.
Again, in the First Part of Jeronymo, 1605: though written much earlier:
let his protestations be
“Will melt the chastest seeming female living.". Reed. In the fourth of the preceding lines spare is undoubtedly an errour of the press in the old edition of Jeronymo, for swear.
Malone. 1-SENT HER.] Mr. Steevens, to produce (as he says) “a more accurate rhyme,” would read—that I sent, Sir; and Mr. J. M. Mason, with the same view, leaving the first line as it now stands, would read in that which follows, what best content her, i. e. those gifts which best content her. I know not which of these suggestions is most exceptionable. He who has observed the laxity of ancient rhymes will not suspect any errour in the text; only three lines lower we find the word you repeated as rhyme; which might have cautioned Mr. Steevens against tampering with the old copy on the ground of too great a similarity of the rhymes. So, in the Tempest:
“ Hourly joys be still upon you,
VAL. A woman sometime scorns what best con-.
tents her: Send her another; never give her o'er; For scorn at first makes after-love the more. If she do frown, 'tis not in hate of you, But rather to beget more love in you: If she do chide, 'tis not to have you gone; For why, the fools are mad, if left alone. Take no repulse, whatever she doth say; For, get you gone, she doth not mean, away: Flatter, and praise, commend, extol their graces ; Though ne'er so black, say, they have angels'
faces. That man that hath a tongue, I say, is no man, If with his tongue he cannot win a woman.
Duke. But she I mean, is promis'd by her friends Unto a youthful gentleman of worth; And kept severely from resort of men, That no man hath access by day to her.
VAL. Why then I would resort to her by night. DUKE. Ay, but the doors be lock’d, and keys
kept safe, That no man hath recourse to her by night. VAL. What lets?, but one may enter at her win
dow ? Duke. Her chamber is aloft, far from the ground; And built so shelving, that one cannot climb it Without apparent hazard of his life.
VAL. Why then, a ladder, quaintly made of cords, To cast up, with a pair of anchoring hooks, Would serve to scale another Hero's tower, So bold Leander would adventure it.
2 What lets,] i. e. what hinders. So, in Hamlet, Act I. Sc. IV.: “ By heaven, I'll make a ghost of him that lets me.”