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His WIFE is brought in.
Gent. See, here she comes of herself.
Wife. O my sweet husband, my dear distressed husband,
Hus. How now? Kind to me? Did I not wound thee?
Wife. Tut, far, far greater wounds did my breast feel;
Hus. 'Faith, and so I think I have;
A fine way now to kill me: thou hast given mine eyes
To spread into a father, and in fury
For that man's dark, where heaven is quite forgot.
Hus. O my dear soul, whom I too much have wrong'd:
Wife. Thou shouldst not, be assured, for these faults die. If the law could forgive as soon as I.
[The two children laid out.
Hus. What sight is yonder?
Hus. Here's weight enough to make a heart-string crack.
O that I might my wishes now attain,
O, would you could pray heaven me to forgive,
I. e. years.
† I. e. blushes or tears for your murders dart along my cheeks.
Wife. It makes me e'en forget all other sorrows, And live apart with this.
Offi. Come, will you go?
Hus. I'll kiss the blood I spilt, and then I'll go:
Hus. That's but in vain; you see it must be so.
Mast. O kind wife,
Be comforted; one joy is yet unmurder'd;
Wife. Dearer than all is my poor husband's life.
Mast. Was it in man to wound so kind a creature ?
I must return with grief; my answer's set;
I shall bring news weighs heavier than the debt.
Two brothers, one in bond lies overthrown,
* I. e. that for which I shall be punished, has proved their introduction to everlasting happiness.
† I.e. fixed, settled.
THE preponderance of criticism is altogether opposed to the admission of this play among the undoubted works of Shakspeare. The most probable statement connecting our author with the play is that made by Ravenscroft, who, in the preface to an alteration of the tragedy, published in 1687, says that he had been "told by some anciently conversant with the stage, that it was not originally Shakspeare's, but brought by a private author to be acted; he only gave some master touches to one or two of the principal parts or characters."
Titus Andronicus," observes Hazlitt, "is certainly as unlike Shakspeare's usual style as it is possible. It is an accumulation of vulgar physical horrors, in which the power exercised by the poet bears no proportion to the repugnance excited by the subject."