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CAIUs. By gar, I see ʼtis an honest woman.
Ford. Well;- I promised you a dinner:-Come, come, walk in the park: I pray you, pardon me; I will hereafter make known to you, why I have done this.-Come, wife ;-come, mistress Page; I pray you pardon me; pray heartily, pardon me.
PAGE. Let's go in, gentlemen; but, trust me, we'll mock him. I do invite you to-morrow morning to my house to breakfast; after, we'll a birding together; I have a fine hawk for the bush: Shall it be so?
FORD. Any thing.
Eva. If there is one, I shall make two in the company.
CAIUS. If there be one or two, I shall make-a de turd. Eva. In your teeth : for shame. .
6 FORD. Pray you go, master Page.
Eva. I pray you now, remembrance to-morrow on the lousy knave, mine host. CAIUS. Dat is good; by gar, vit all my
heart. Eva. A lousy knave; to have his gibes, and his mockeries.
• In your teeth:] This dirty restoration was made by Mr. Theobald. Evans's application of the doctor's words is not in the folio. STEEVENS.
A Room in Page's House.
Enter FENTON and Mistress ANNE PAGE.
FENT. I see, I cannot get thy father's love; Therefore, no more turn me to him, sweet Nan.
ANNE. Alas! how then?
Why, thou must be thyself.
ANNE. May be, he tells you true.
- father's wealth-] Some light may be given to those who shall endeavour to calculate the increase of English wealth, by observing, that Latymer, in the time of Edward VI. mentions it as a proof of his father's prosperity, That though but a yeoman, he gave his daughters five pounds each for her portion. At the latter end of Elizabeth, seven hundred pounds were such a temptation to courtship, as made all other motives suspected. Congreve makes twelve thousand pounds more than a counterbalance to the affectation of Belinda. "No poet will now fly his favourite character at less than fifty thousand. Johnson.
Gentle master Fenton,
Enter Shallow, SLENDER, and Mrs. QUICKLY.
SHAL. Break their talk, mistress Quickly; my kinsman shall speak for himself.
SLEN. I'll make a shaft or a bolt on't:8 slid, 'tis but venturing.
SHAL. Be not dismay’d.
SLEN. No, she shall not dismay me: I care not for that, but that I am afeard.
Quick. Hark ye; master Slender would speak a word with you.
ANNE. I come to him.- This is my father's choice. O, what a world of vile ill-favour'ð faults Looks handsome in three hundred pounds a year!
I'll make a shaft or a bolt on't:) To make a bolt or a shaft of a thing is enumerated by Ray, amongst others, in his colfection of proverbial phrases. Ray's Proverbs, p. 179, edit. 1742.
So, in a letter from James Howell, dated 19 Aug. 1623 : “ The prince is preparing for his journey. I shall to it again closely when he is gone, or make a shaft or bolt of it.” Howell's Letters, p. 146, edit. 1754. REED.
The shaft was such an arrow as skilful archers employed. The bolt in this proverb means, I think, the fool's bolt.
MALONE A shaft was a general term for an arrow. A bolt was a thick short one, with a knob at the end of it. It was only employed to shoot birds with, and was commonly called a “ bird-bolt.” The word occurs again in Much Ado about Nothing, Lõve's Labour's Lost, and Twelfth Night. STEEVENS.
Quick. And how does good master Fenton ? Pray you, a word with you.
SHAL. She's coming; to her, coz. O boy, thou hadst a father!
SLEN. I had a father, mistress Anne;—my uncle can tell you good jests of him :-Pray you, uncle, tell mistress Anne the jest, how my father stole two geese out of a pen, good uncle.
SHAL. Mistress Anne, my cousin loves you.
SLEN. Ay, that I do; as well as I love any woman in Glocestershire.
SHAL. He will maintain you like a gentlewoman.
SlEn. Ay, that I will, come cut and long-tail, under the degree of a 'squire.
come cut and long-tail,] i. e. come poor, or rich, to offer himself as my rival. The following is said to be the origin of the phrase :- According to the forest laws, the dog of a man, who had no right to the privilege of chace, was obliged to cut, ór law his dog among other modes of disabling him, by depriving him of his tail. A dog so cut was called a cut, or curttail, and by contraction cur. Cut and long-tail therefore signified the dog of a clown, and the dog of a gentleman.
Again, in The First Part of the Eighth Liberal Science, entitled Ars Adulandi, &c. devised and compiled by Ulpian Fulwel,
-yea, even their very dogs, Rug, Rig, and Risbie, yea, cut and long-taile, they shall be welcome.” Steevens.
come cut and long-tail;] I can see no meaning in this phrase. Slender promises to make his mistress a gentlewoman, and probably means to say, he will deck her in a gown of the court-cut, and with a long train or tail. In the comedy of Eastward Hoe, is this passage: “ The one must be ladyfied forsooth, and be attired just to the court cut and long tayle ; " which seems to justify our reading-Court cut and long tail.
Sir J. HAWKINS. come cut and long-tail,] This phrase is often found in old plays, and seldom, if ever, with any variation. The change therefore proposed by Sir John Hawkins cannot be received, without great violence to the text. Whenever the words occur, they always bear the same meaning, and that meaning is .obé
SHAL. He will make you a hundred and fifty pounds jointure.
ANNE. Good master Shallow, let him woo for himself.
vious enough without any explanation. The origin of the phrase may however admit of some dispute, and it is by no means certain that the account of it, here adopted by Mr. Steevens from Dr. Johnson, is well-founded. That there ever existed such a mode of disqualifying dogs by the laws of the forest, as is here asserted, cannot be acknowledged without evidence, and no authority is quoted to prove that such a custom at any time prevailed. The writers on this subject are totally silent, as far as they have come to my knowledge. Manwood, who wrote on the Forest Laws before they were entirely disused, mentions expeditation or cutting off three claws of the fore-foot, as the only manner of lawing dogs; and with his account, the Charter of the Forest seems to agree.
Were I to offer a conjecture, I should suppose that the phrase originally referred to horses, which might be denominated cut and long tail, as they were curtailed of this part of their bodies, or allowed to enjoy its full growth; and this might be practised according to the difference of their value, or the uses to which they were put. In this view, cut and long tail would include the whole species of horses good and bad. In support of this opinion it may be added, that formerly a cut was a word of reproach in vulgar colloquial abuse, and I believe is never to be found applied to horses, except to those of the worst kind.
After all, if any authority can be produced to countenance Dr. Johnson's explanation, Í shall be ready to retract every thing that is here said. See also a note on The Match at Midnight, Dodsley's Collection of Old Plays, Vol. VII. p. 424, edit. 1780. Reed.
The last conversation I had the honour to enjoy with Sir William Blackstone, was on this subject; and by a series of accurate references to the whole collection of ancient Forest Laws, he convinced me of our repeated error, expeditation and genu scission, being the only established and technical modes ever used for disabling the canine species. Part of the tails of spaniels, indeed, are generally cut off (ornamenti gratia) while they are puppies, so that (admitting a loose description) every kind of dog is comprehended in the phrase of cut and long-tail, and every rank of people in the same expression, if metaphorically used. STEEVENS.