950. Suggested us-- ] That is, tempted us.

JOHNSON. 961. As Bombast and as lining to the time :) This line is obscure. Bombast was a kind of loose texture not unlike what is now called wadding, used to give the dresses of that time bulk and protuberance, without much increase of weight; when

the same name is given to a tumour of words unsupported by solid sentiment. The princess, therefore, says, that they considered this courtship as but bombast, as something to fill out life, which not being closely united with it, might be thrown away at pleasure. JOHNSON.

Prince Henry calls Falstaff, “ —my sweet creature of bombast."

STEEVENS 971. To make a world-without-end bargain in:] This singular phrase, which Shakspere borrowed probably from our liturgy, occurs again in his 57th Sonnet : « Nor dare I chide the world-without-end hour."

MALONE. 987. Come challenge, challenge me by these deserts, ] The old copies read, Come challenge me, challenge me by these de

serts. I see no occasion for departing from them. We have many verses in this play equally irregular.

MALONE. 994. Neither entitled in the other's heart.] The quarto, 1598, reads-Neither intiled; which may be right: 'neither of us having a dwelling in the heart of the other. Iij


Our author has the same kind of imagery in many other places. Thus, in the Comedy of Errors :

“ Shall love in building grow so ruinate?", Again, in his Lover's Complaint : Love lack'd a dwelling, and made him her

Again, in the Two Gentlemen of Veroną :

"O thou, that dost inhabit in my breast,
“ Leave not the mansion so long tenantless,
“ Lest growing ruinous the building fall."

MALONE, 996. To Aatter up t'nese powers of mine with rest,] Dr. Warburton would read fetter, but flatter or sooth is, in my opinion, more apposite to the king's purpose than fetter. Perhaps we may read,

To flatter on these hours of time with rest ; That is, I would not deny to live in the hermitage, to make the year of delay pass in quiet. JOHNSON. 999. Biron. And what to me, my love, and what to me?

Ros. You must be purged too, your sins are

You are attaint with fault and perjury:
Therefore, if you my favour mean to get,
A twelvemonth shall you spend, and never rest,

But seek the weary beds of people sick.] These six verses both Dr. Thirlby and Mr. Warburton concur to think, should be expunged; not that they were an interpolation, but as the author's first draught,


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which he afterwards rejected ; and executed the same thought a little lower with much more spirit and elegance. Shakspere is not to answer for the present absurd repetition, but his actor-editors; who, thinking Rosaline's speech too long in the second plan, had abridged it to the lines above quoted; but, in publishing the play, stupidly printed both the original speech of Shakspere, and their own abridgment of it.

THEOBALD. -are rank ;] The folio and quarto, 1631, read--are rack'd.

Steevens. 1036. -fierce endeavour~] Fierce is vehement, rapid. So, in King John: - fierce extremes of sickness."

STEEVENS. 1047. dear groans,] Dear should here, as in many other places, be dere, sad, odious. JOHNSON.

I believe dear in this place, as in many others, means only immediate, consequential. So, already, in this scene : -full of dear guiltiness.

Sreevens. 1054. The characters of Biron and Rosaline suffer much by comparison with those of Benedick and Beatrice. We know that Love's Labour's Lost was the elder performance ;, and as our author grew more experienced in dramatick writing, he might have seen how much he could improve on his own originals. Țo this circumstance, perhaps, we are indebted for the more perfect comedy of Much Ado about Nothing.



1079. When, &c.] The first lines of this song that were transposed, have been replaced by Mr. Theo. bald.

JOHNSON, 1081.

-Cuckow.buds- -] Gerard in his Herbal, 1597, says, that the flos cuculi cardamine, &c. are called “ in English, cuckoo-flowers, in Norfolk Canterbury-bells, and at Namptwich in Cheshire ladiesmocks." Shakspere, however, might not have been sufficiently skilled in botany to be aware of this particular.

Mr. Tollet has observed, that Lyte in his Herbal, 1578 and 1579, remarks, that cowslips are, in French, of some called coquu, prime vere, and brayes de coquu. This he thinks will sufficiently account for our au. thor's cuckoo-buds, by which he supposes cowslip-buds to be meant; and further directs the reader to Cot. grave's Diflionary, under the articles-Cocu, and herbe a coqu.

STEEVENS. Cuckow-buds must be wrong. I believe cowslip-buds the true reading.

FARMER. Mr. Whalley, the learned editor of Ben Jonson's works, many years ago proposed to read crocus buds, The cuckow flower, he observed, could not be called yellow, it rather approaching to the colour of white, by which epithet Cowley, who was himself no mean botanist, has distinguished it: Albaque cardamine, &c.

MALONE. Crocus buds is a phrase unknown to naturalists and gardeners.

STEEVENS, 1105. doth keel the pot.] This word is yet used in Ireland, and signifies to scum the pot.


GOLDSMITH, So, in Marston's What you Will, 1607:—" Faith, Doricus, thy brain boils, keel it, keel it, or all the fat's in the fire."

STEEVENS, To keel the pot is certainly to cool it, but in a particular manner; it is to stir the pottage with the ladle, to prevent the boiling over.

FARMER. To keel signifies to cool in general, without any reference to the kitchen. So, in Gower De Confessione Amantis, Lib. V. fol. 121.

“ The cote he found, and eke he feleth
" The mace, and than his herte keleth

" That there durst he not abide." Again, fol. 131.

“ With water on his finger ende

Thyne hote tonge to kele." Mr. Lambe observes, in his notes on the ancient metrical History of the Battle of Flodden, that it is a çommon thing in the North “ for a maid servant to take out of a boiling pot a wheen, i. c. a small quan., tity, viz. a porringer or two of broth, and then to fill. lip the pot with cold water. The broth thus taken out is called the keeling wheen. In this manner greasy Joan keeled the pot.”

“ Gie me beer, and gie me grots,
" And lumps of beef to swum abeen ;
“ And ilka time that I stir the pot,
$. He's hae frae me the keeling wheen.


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