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what you have to do.-0, I cry you mercy, friend; go you with me, and I will use your skill: -Good cousins, have a care this busy time.
Enter Don John and CONRADE. Con. What the goujere, my lord! why are you thus out of measure sad?
D. John. There is no measure in the occasion that breeds it, therefore the sadness is without limit.
Con. You should hear reason.
D. John. And when I have heard it, what blessing bringeth it?
Con. If not a present remedy, yet a patient sufferance.
D. John. I wonder, that thou being (as thou say'st thou art) born under Saturn, goest about to apply a moral medicine to a mortifying mischief. I cannot hide what I am:2 I must be sad when I have cause, and smile at no man's jests; eat when I have stomach, and wait for no man's leisure; sleep when I am drowsy, and tend on no man's business; laugh when I am merry, and claw no man in his humour. S
1 What the goujere,] i. e. morbus Gallicus. The old copy corruptly reads, “ good-year.” The same expression occurs again in K. Lear, Act 1, sc. iii:
“ The goujeres shall devour them, flesh and fell.” See note on this passage. Steevens.
2 I cannot hide what I am:] This is one of our author's natural touches. An envious and unsocial mind, too proud to give pleasure, and too sullen to receive it, always endeavours to hide its malignity from the world and from itself, under the plainness of simple honesty, or the dignity of haughty independence. Johnson.
claw no man in his humour.] To claw is to flatter. So the pope's claw-backs, in Bishop Jewel, are the pope's flatterers. The sense is the same in the proverb, Mulus mulum scabit.
Fohnson. So, in Albion's England, 1597, p. 125:
“ The overweening of thy wits doth make thy foes to smile, “ Thy friends to weepe, and claw-backs thee with soothings
to beguile.” Again, in Wylson on Usury, 1571, p. 141: “ therefore I will clawe him, and saye well might he fare, and godds blessing have
Con. Yea, but you must not make the full show of this, till you may do it without controlment. You have of late stood out against your brother, and he hath ta’en you newly into his grace; where it is impossible you should take true root, but by the fair weather that you make yourself: it is needful that you frame the season for your own harvest.
D. John. I had rather be a canker in a hedge, than a rose in his grace;4 and it better fits my blood to be disdain'd of all, than to fashion a carriage to rob love from any: in this, though I cannot be said to be a flattering honest man, it must not be denied but I am a plaindealing villain. I am trusted with a muzzle, and enfranchised with a clog; therefore I have decreed not to sing
he too. For the more he speaketh, the better it itcheth, and maketh better for me.” Reed.
4 I had rather be a canker in a hedge, than a rose in his grace;] A canker is the canker-rose, dog-rose, cynosbatus, or hip. The sense is, I would rather live in obscurity the wild life of nature, than owe dignity or estimation to my brother. He still continues his wish of gloomy independence. But what is the meaning of the expression, a rose in his grace? If he was a rose of himself, his brother's grace or favour could not degrade him. I once read thus: I had rather be a canker in a hedge, than a rose in his garden: that is, I had rather be what nature makes me, however mean, than owe any exaltation or improvement to my brother's kindness or cultivation. But a less change will be sufficient: I think it should be read, I had rather be a canker in a hedge, than a rose by his grace. Johnson.
The canker is a term often substituted for the canker-rose. Hey. wood, in his Love's Mistress, 1636, calls it the “canker-flower." Again, in Shakspeare's 54th Sonnet:
“ The canker blooms have full as deep a die
“ As the perfumed tincture of the rose." I think no change is necessary. The sense is,-I had rather be a neglected dog-rose in a hedge, than a garden-flower of the same species, if it profited by his culture. Steevens.
The latter words are intended as an answer to what Conrade has just said_" he hath ta’en you newly into his grace, where it is impossible you should take true root,” &c. În Macbeth we have a kindred expression:
Welcome hither :
“ To make thee full of growing."
in my cage: If I had my mouth, I would bite; if I had my liberty, I would do my liking; in the mean time, let me be that I am, and seek not to alter me.
Con. Can you make no use of your discontent?
D. John. I make all use of it, for I use it only.5 Who comes here? What news, Borachio?
Enter BORACHIO. Bora. I came yonder from a great supper; the prince, your brother, is royally entertain'd by Leonato; and I can give you intelligence of an intended marriage.
D. John. Will it serve for any model to build mischief on? What is he for a fool, that betroths himself to unquietness?
Bora. Marry, it is your brother's right hand.
D. John. A proper squire! And who, and who? which way looks he?
Bora. Marry, on Hero, the daughter and heir of Leonato.
D. John. A very forward March-chick! How came
you to this?
Bora. Being entertain'd for a perfumer, as I was smoking a musty room, comes me the prince and Claudio, hand in hand, in sad conference:6 I whipt me behind the arras; and there heard it agreed upon, that the prince should woo Hero for himself, and having obtained her, give her to count Claudio.
D. John. Come, come, let us thither; this may prove food to my displeasure: that young start-up hath all the glory of my overthrow; if I can cross him any way, I bless myself every way: You are both sure, and will assist me?
Con. To the death, my lord.
- for I use it only.] i. e. for I make nothing else my counsellor. Steevens.
in sad conference:] Sad in this, as in future instances, signifies serious. So, in The Winter's Tale : “My father, and the gentlemen, are in sad talk.” Steevens.
- both sure,] i. e. to be depended on. So, in Macbeth: Thou sure and firm-set earth
the greater, that I am subdued: 'Would the cook were of my mind!—Shall we go prove what's to be done?
Bora. We 'll wait upon your lordship. [Exeunt.
ACT II.....SCENE I.
A Hall in LEONATO's House.
Enter LEONATO, ANTONIO, HERO, BEATRICE, and
Leon. Was not count John here at supper?
Beat. How tartly that gentleman looks! I never can see him, but I am heart-burn'd an hour after. 8
Hero. He is of a very melancholy disposition.
Beat. He were an excellent man, that were made just in the mid-way between him and Benedick: the one is too like an image, and says nothing; and the other, too like my lady's eldest son, evermore tattling.
Leon. Then half signior Benedick's tongue in count John's mouth, and half count John's melancholy in sig. nior Benedick's face,
Beat. With a good leg, and a good foot, uncle, andmoney enough in his purse, such a man would win any woman in the world,—if he could get her good will.
Leon. By my troth, niece, thou wilt never get thee a husband, if thou be so shrewd of thy tongue.
Ant. In faith, she is too curst.
Beat. Too curst is more than curst: I shall lessen God's sending that way: for it is said God sends a curst cow short horns; but to a cow too curst he sends none.
Leon. So, by being too curst, God will send you no horns.
Beat. Just, if he send me no husband; for the which blessing, I am at him upon my knees every morning
-heart-burn'd an hour after.] The pain commonly called the heart-burn, proceeds from an acid humour in the stomach, and is therefore properly enough imputed to tart looks. Johnson.
and evening: Lord! I could not endure a husband with a beard on his face; I had rather lie in the woollen.'
Leon. You may light upon a husband, that hath no beard.
Beat. What should I do with him? dress him in my apparel, and make him my waiting-gentlewoman? He that hath a beard, is more than a youth; and he that hath no beard, is less than a man: and he that is more than a youth, is not for me; and he that is less than a man, I am not for him: Therefore I will even take sixpense in earnest of the bear-herd, and lead his apes into hell.
Leon. Well then, go you into hell ?1
Beat. No; but to the gate: and there will the devil meet me, like an old cuckold, with horns on his head, and say, Get you to heaven, Beatrice, get you to heaven; here's no place for you maids: so deliver I up my apes, and away to Saint Peter for the heavens; he shows me where the bachelors sit, and there live we as merry as the day is long.
Ant. Well, niece, [to Hero] I trust, you will be ruled by your father.
Beat. Yes, faith; it is my cousin's duty to make courtesy, and say, Father, as it please you :—but yet for all that, cousin, let him be a handsome fellow, or else make another courtesy, and say, Father, as it pilease me.
Leon. Well, niece, I hope to see you one day fitted with a husband.
Beat. Not till God make men of some other metal than earth. Would it not grieve a woman to be overmaster'd with a piece of valiant dust? to make an account of her life to a clod of wayward marl? No, uncle, I'll
in the woollen. ] I suppose she means-between blankets, without sheets. Steevens.
1 Well then, &c.] Of the two next speeches Dr. Warburton says, All this impious nonsense thrown to the bottom, is the players", and foisted in without rhyme or reason. He therefore puts them in the margin. They do not deserve indeed so honourable a place; yet I am afraid they are too much in the manner of our author, who is sometimes trying to purchase merriment at too dear a rate.
Fohnson. I have restored the lines omitted. Steevens.