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ANT. Let me speak a little. This youth that you see here,
I snatch'd one half out of the jaws of death;
1 OFF. What's that to us? The time goes by; away.
ANT. But, O, how vile an idol proves this god!Thou hast, Sebastian, done good feature shame. In nature there's no blemish, but the mind; None can be call'd deform'd, but the unkind: Virtue is beauty; but the beauteous-evil Are empty trunks, o'erflourish'd by the devil."
1 OFF. The man grows mad; away with him. Come, come, sir.
ANT. Lead me on.
[Exeunt Officers, with ANTONIO. Vio. Methinks, his words do from such passion. fly,
That he believes himself; so do not I.
o'erflourish'd by the devil.] In the time of Shakspeare, trunks, which are now deposited in lumber-rooms, or other obscure places, were part of the furniture of apartments in which company was received. I have seen more than one of these, as old as the time of our poet. They were richly ornamented on the tops and sides with scroll-work, emblematical devices, &c. and were elevated on feet. Shakspeare has the same expression. in Measure for Measure:
your title to him
"Doth flourish the deceit."
Again, in his 60th Sonnet:
"Time doth transfix the flourish set on youth."
6 so do not I.] This, I believe, means, I do not yet believe myself, when, from this accident, I gather hope of my brother's life. JOHNSON.
Prove true, imagination, O, prove true,
VIO. He nam'd Sebastian; I my brother know Yet living in my glass;' even such, and so, In favour was my brother; and he went Still in this fashion, colour, ornament, For him I imitate: O, if it Tempests are kind, and salt waves fresh in love!
SIR TO. A very dishonest paltry boy, and more a coward than a hare: his dishonesty appears, in leaving his friend here in necessity, and denying him; and for his cowardship, ask Fabian.
FAB. A coward, a most devout coward, religious in it.
SIR AND. 'Slid, I'll after him again, and beat him. SIR TO. Do, cuff him soundly, but never draw thy sword.
SIR AND. An I do not,
FAB. Come, let's see the event.
SIR TO. I dare lay any money, 'twill be nothing yet. [Exeunt.
I my brother know
Yet living in my glass;] I suppose Viola means-As often as I behold myself in my glass, I think I see my brother alive; i. e. I acknowledge that his resemblance survives in the reflection of my own figure. STEEVENS.
ACT IV. SCENE I.
The Street before Olivia's House.
Enter SEBASTIAN and Clown.
CLO. Will you make me believe, that I am not sent for you?
SEB. Go to, go to, thou art a foolish fellow; Let me be clear of thee.
CLO. Well held out, i'faith! No, I do not know you; nor I am not sent to you by my lady, to bid you come speak with her; nor your name is not master Cesario; nor this is not my nose neither.Nothing, that is so, is so.
SEB. I pr'ythee, vent thy folly somewhere else; Thou know'st not me.
CLO. Vent my folly! He has heard that word of some great man, and now applies it to a fool. Vent my folly! I am afraid this great lubber, the world, will prove a cockney.'-I pr'ythee now, ungird thy strangeness, and tell me what I shalĺ
Vent my folly! He has heard that word of some great man, &c.] This affected word seems to have been in use in Shakspeare's time. In Melvil's Memoirs, p. 198, we have "My Lord Lindsay vented himself that he was one of the number," &c. REED.
9 I am afraid this great lubber,] That is, affectation and foppery will overspread the world. JOHNSON.
1prove a cockney.] So, in A Knight's Conjuring, by Decker: 66 'tis not their fault, but our mothers', our cockering mothers, who for their labour make us to be called Cockneys," &c. STEEVENS.
vent to my lady; Shall I vent to her, that thou art coming?
SEB. I pr'ythee, foolish Greek, depart from me; There's money for thee; if you tarry longer, I shall give worse payment.
CLO. By my troth, thou hast an open hand:These wise men, that give fools money, get themselves a good report after fourteen years' purchase.3
I pr'ythee, foolish Greek,] Greek, was as much as to say bawd or pander. He understood the Clown to be acting in that office. A bawdy-house was called Corinth, and the frequenters of it Corinthians, which words occur frequently in Shakspeare, especially in Timon of Athens, and Henry IV. Yet the Oxford editor alters it to Geck. WARBURTON.
Can our author have alluded to St. Paul's epistle to the Romans, c. i. v. 23?
"to the Greeks foolishness." STEEVENS.
get themselves a good report after fourteen years' purchase.] This seems to carry a piece of satire upon monopolies, the crying grievance of that time. The grants generally were for fourteen years; and the petitions being referred to a committee, it was suspected that money gained favourable reports from thence. WARBURTON.
Perhaps fourteen years' purchase was, in Shakspeare's time, the highest price for land. Lord Bacon's Essay on Usury mentions sixteen years purchase. "I will not give more than according to fifteen years purchase, said a dying usurer to a clergyman, who advised him to study for a purchase of the kingdom of heaven." TOLLET.
Mr. Heath thinks the meaning is, "-purchase a good report [or character] at a very extravagant price." MALone.
Dr. Warburton's conjecture that there is here a reference to monopolies, is, I believe, unfounded. Mr. Tollet and Mr. Heath are probably right. Sir Josiah Child, in his Discourse on Trade, says, 66 - certainly anno 1621, the current price of lands in England was twelve years purchase; and so I have been assured by many ancient men whom I have questioned particularly as to this matter; and I find it so by purchases made about that time by my own relations and acquaintance." Sir Thomas Culpepper, senior, who wrote in 1621, affirms, "that land was then at twelve years purchase." REED.
Enter Sir ANDREW, Sir TOBY, and FABIAN.
SIR AND. Now, sir, have I met you again? there's for you. [Striking SEBAstian. SEB. Why, there's for thee, and there, and there: Are all the people mad? [Beating Sir ANDREW. SIR TO. Hold, sir, or I'll throw your dagger o'er the house.
CLO. This will I tell my lady straight: I would not be in some of your coats for two-pence.
SIR TO. Come on, sir; hold. [Holding SEBASTIAN.
SIR AND. Nay, let him alone, I'll go another way to work with him; I'll have an action of battery against him, if there be any law in Illyria: though I struck him first, yet it's no matter for that.
SEB. Let go thy hand.
SIR TO. Come, sir, I will not let you go. Come, my young soldier, put up your iron: you are well fleshed; come on.
SEB. I will be free from thee. What wouldst thou now?
If thou dar'st tempt me further, draw thy sword. [Draws.
SIR TO. What, what? Nay, then I must have an ounce or two of this malapert blood from you.
OLI. Hold, Toby; on thy life, I charge thee, hold. SIR TO. Madam?