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bookfeller, who in the year 1619, after the death of Shakspeare, affixed his name to these two old plays, accounted for, p. 243. 7. These two old pieces being printed and reprinted, and The Firft Part of King Henry VI. not being printed, in Shakspeare's life time, a prefumptive proof that he new-modelled the former, and had little or no concern with the latter, p. 244.
II. INTERNAL EVIDENCE. 1. The VARIATIONS between the two old plays in quarto, and the corresponding pieces in the folio edition of our author's dramatick works, of fo peculiar a nature, as to mark two distinct hands. Several paffages and circumstances found in the old plays, of which there is no trace in Shakspeare's new modification of them; others materially varying. These insertions and variations could not have arisen from unfkilful copyifts or fhort-hand writers, who fometimes curtail and mutilate, but do not invent and amplify, p. 244— 249. 2. The RESEMBLANCES between certain paffages in Shakfpeare's Second and Third Part of King Henry VI. and his undifputed works, a proof that he wrote a large portion of those plays; and 3. The DISCORDANCIES between them and his undifputed plays, a proof that he did not write the whole; these refemblances being found only in the folio, that is, in the plays as new-modelled by Shakspeare; and thefe difcordancies being found in the old quarto plays, from whence it must be presumed that they were adopted through careleffness or hafte, p. 249251. 4. The peculiar INACCURACIES of Shakspeare; and 5. his peculiar PHRASEOLOGY, which are found in The Second and Third Part of King Henry VI. as exhibited in folio, and not in the old quarto plays printed in 1600, prove that there were two diftin&t hands in these pieces; p. 252, 254. So also do, 6. The TRANSPOSITIONS, p. 254; and 7. the REPETITIONS, p. 255; and 8. the INCONSISTENCIES arifing from fometimes following, and fometimes departing from, an original model, p. 255, 256. 9. Hall, the hiftorian, on whofe Chronicle the old plays in quarto were conftructed; but Holinfhed and not Hall, Shakspeare's hiftorian, p. 256, 257.
The old plays on which Shakspeare formed his Second and Third Parts of King Henry VI. probably written by the author of King John, printed in 1591, whoever he was; p. 258. An attempt made to account for The First Part of King Henry VI. being printed in the first folio edition of our poet's dramatick works, p. 258, 259. Objections of Dr. Johnfon and others, enumerated. Recapitulation, p. 259, 260. A confiderable part of the English history dramatized before the time of Shakspeare; and many of his hiftorical and other plays formed on thofe of preceding writers, p. 260-262. Conclufion, p. 262.
THE THREE PARTS
KING HENRY VI.
TENDING TO SHOW
That thofe Plays were NOT written ORIGINALLY by SHAKSPEARE.
SEVERAL paffages in The Second and Third Part of King Henry VI. appearing evidently to be of the hand of Shakspeare, I was long of opinion that the three historical dramas which are the fubject of the present difquifition, were properly ascribed to him; not then doubting that the whole of thefe plays was the production of the fame perfon. But a more minute investigation of the fubject, into which I have been led by the revision of all our author's works, has convinced me, that, though the premises were true, my conclufion was too haftily drawn; for though the hand of Shakspeare is unquestionably found in the two latter of these plays, it does not therefore neceffarily follow, that they were originally and entirely compofed by him. My thoughts upon this point have already been intimated in the foregoing notes; but it is now neceffary for me to ftate my opinion more particularly, and to lay before the reader the grounds on which, after a very careful enquiry, it has been formed.
What at present I have chiefly in view is, to account for the vifible inequality in thefe pieces; many traits of Shakspeare being clearly difcernible in them, while the inferior parts are not merely unequal to the rest, (from which no certain conclufion can be drawn,) but of quite a different complexion from the inferior parts of our author's undoubted performances.
My hypothefis then is, that The First Part of King Henry V1. as it now appears, (of which no quarto copy is extant,) was the entire or nearly the entire production of fome ancient dramatist; that The Whole Contention of the Two Houfes of York and Lancafter, &c. written probably before the year 1590, and printed in quarto, in 1600, was alfo the compofition of fome writer who preceded Shakspeare; and that from this piece, which is in two parts, (the former of which is entitled, The First Part of the Contention of the Two famous Houfes of Yorke and Lancaster, with the Death of the good Duke Humphrey, &c. and the latter, The true Tragedie of Richarde Duke of Yorke, and the Death of good King Henrie the Sixt,) our poet formed the two plays, entitled, The Second and Third Parts of King Henry VI. as they appear in the first folio edition of his works.
Mr. Upton has asked, "How does the painter diftinguish copies from originals but by manner and style? And have not authors their peculiar style and manner, from which a true critick can form as unerring a judgment as a painter?" Dr. Johnson, though he has shown, with his usual acuteness, that, "this illuftration of the critick's fcience will not prove what is defired," acknowledges in a preceding note, that" diffimilitude of style and heterogeneoufness of fentiment may fufficiently show that a work does not really belong to the reputed author. But in these plays (he adds) no fuch marks of fpurioufnefs are found. The diction, verfification, and the figures, are Shakspeare's."-By thefe criterions then let us examine The Firft Part of K. Henry V1. (for I choose to confider that piece separately;) and if the diction, the figures, or rather the allufions, and the versification of that play, (for these are our fureft guides) fhall appear to be different from the other two parts, as they are exhibited in the folio, and from our author's other plays, we may fairly conclude that he was not the writer of it.
I. With respect to the diction and the allufions, which I fhall confider under the fame head, it is very observable that in The First Part of King Henry VI. there are more allufions to mythology, to claffical authors, and to ancient and modern hiftory, than, I believe, can be found in any one piece of our author's, written on an English ftory; and that thefe allufions are introduced very much in the fame manner as they are introduced in the plays of Greene, Peele, Lodge, and other dramatists who preceded Shakspeare; that is, they do not naturally arife out of the fubject, but feem to be inferted merely to fhew the writer's learning.* Of these the following are the most remarkable:
➡to shew the writer's learning.] This appearance of pedantry, if not affumed in imitation of Greene &c. (See Vol. XIII. p. 3,) would only induce
1. Mars his true moving, even as in the heavens,
This blank, Dr. Johnson with the highest probability conjectures, fhould be filled up with "Berenice;" a word that the tranfcriber or compofitor probably could not make out. In the fame manner he left a blank in a fubfequent paffage for the name of" Nero," as is indubitably proved by the following line, which afcertains the omitted word. See No. 6.
3. Was Mahomet inspired with a dove?
4. Helen, the mother of great Constantine,
Play on the lute, beholding the towns burning. [In the original copy there is a blank where the word Nero is now placed.]
7. The fpirit of deep prophecy the hath,
Exceeding the nine Sybils of old Rome.
9. Divineft creature, Aftræa's daughter-.
That one day bloom'd, and fruitful were the next. 11. A statelier pyramis to her I'll rear,
Than Rhodope's, or Memphis', ever was.
an urn more precious
Than the rich-jewel'd coffer of Darius.
As Scythian Thomyris, by Cyrus' death.
15. Neftor-like aged, in an age of care.
16. Then follow thou thy desperate fire of Crete,
17. Where is the great Alcides of the field?
me to think that the piece now under confideration might be the work of a juvenile writer; and why not one of Shakspeare's earliest dramatick effufions? The first themes composed by schoolboys are always ftuffed with a tritical parade of literature, fuch as is found in antiquated plays, fome of which, our author, while yet immature, might have taken for his model. STEEVENS.
19. Is Talbot flain; the Frenchman's only fcourge,
There Minotaurs, and ugly treasons lurk.
As did the youthful Paris once to Greece;
With hope to find the like event in love.
Of particular expreffions there are many in this play, that seem to me more likely to have been used by the authors already named, than by Shakspeare; but I confess, with Dr. Johnson, that single words can conclude little. However, I will just mention that the words proditor and immanity, which occur in this piece, are not, I believe, found in any of Shakspeare's undifputed performances not to infist on a direct Latinifm, pile-esteemed, which I am confident was the word intended by the author, though, being a word of his own formation, the compofitor has printedpil'd-efteem'd, instead of it.*
The verfification of this play appears to me clearly of a different colour from that of all our author's genuine dramas, while at the fame time it resembles that of many of the plays produced before the time of Shakspeare.
In all the tragedies written before his time, or just when he commenced author, a certain stately march of versification is very obfervable. The fenfe concludes or paufes almost uniformly at the end of every line; and the verse has scarcely ever a redundant fyllable. As the reader may not have any of these pieces at hand, (by the poffeffion of which, however, his library would not be much enriched,) I fhall add a few instances,-the first that occur:
"Most loyal lords, and faithful followers,
Leaving the confines of fair Italy,
"Behold, your Brutus draweth nigh his end.
* See King Henry VI. P. I. Vol. XIII. p. 39, n. 4.