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London. The Temple Garden.

Enter the Earls of SOMERSET, SUFFOLK, and WARWICK; RICHARD. PLANTAGENET, VERNON, and another Lawyer.*


PLAN. Great lords, and gentlemen what means this filence?

Dare no man answer in a cafe of truth?

SUF. Within the Temple hall we were too loud; The garden here is more convenient.

PLAN. Then say at once, If I maintain'd the truth;

Or, elfe, was wrangling Somerset in the error? 3
SUF, 'Faith, I have been a truant in the law;
And never yet could frame my will to it;
And, therefore, frame the law unto my will.

Soм. Judge you, my lord of Warwick, then be

tween us.

WAR. Between two hawks, which flies the higher pitch.

Between two dogs, which hath the deeper mouth,



and another Lawyer.] Read -a lawyer. This lawyer was probably Roger Nevyle, who was afterward hanged. W. Wyrcefter, p. 478. RITSON.

3 Or, elfe, was wrangling Somerset in the error?] So all the editions. There is apparently a want of oppofition between the two queftions I once read,

Or else was wrangling Somerset 'th' right? JOHNSON.

Sir T. Hanmer would read:

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Betwen two blades, which bears the better tem



Between two horfes, which doth bear him beft, 3
Between two girls, which hath the merriel eye,
I have, perhaps, fome fhallow fpirit of judgement:
But in these nice fharp quillets of the law.
Good faith, I am no wiser than a daw.

PLAN. Tut, tut, here is a mannerly forbearance:
The truth appears fo naked on my fide,
That any purblind eye may find it out.

SOM. And on my fide it is fo well apparell'd; So clear, fo fhining, and so evident,

That it will glimmer through a blind man's eye. PLAN. Since you are tongue-ty'd, and so loath to speak,

In dumb fignificants proclaim your thoughts:
Let him, that is a trueborn gentleman,
And ftands upon the honour of his birth,
If he fuppofe that I have pleaded truth,

From off this briar pluck a white rofe with me. 5


bear him beft,] i. e. regulate his motions moft adroitly. So, in Romeo and Juliet:

"He bears him like a portly gentleman."


4 In dùmb fignificants-] I fufpect, we should read-fignificance.


I believe the old reading is the true one. So, in Love's Labour's Loft: Bear this fignificant [i. e. a letter ] to the country maid, Jaquenetta." STEEVENS.

This is given York and Lan

5 From off this briar pluck a white rofe with me. as the original of the two badges of the houfes of cafter, whether truly or not, is no great matter. But the proverbial expreffion of faying a thing under the rofe. I am perfuaded, came from thence. When the nation had ranged itfelf into two great factions, under the white and red rofe, and were perpetually plotting and counterplotting against one another, then, when a matter of faction was communicated by either party to his friend in the fame quarrel, it was natural for him to add, that he jaid it

SOм. Let him that is no coward, nor no flat


But dare maintain the party of the truth,

Pluck a red rofe from off this thorn with me.


WAR. I love no colours; and, without all co* lour

Of base insinuating flattery,

I pluck this white rofe, with Plantagenet.

SUF. I pluck this red rofe, with young Somerfet; And fay withal, I think he held the right.

VER. Stay, lords, and gentlemen; and pack no


Till you conclude that he, upon whofe fide
The feweft rofes are cropp'd from the tree,,
Shall yield the other in the right opinion.

under the rofe; meaning that, as it concerned the faction, it was religiously to be kept fecret. WARBURTON.

This is Ingenious! What pity, that it is not learned too? The role (as the fables fay) was the symbol of filence, and confecrated by Cupid to Harpocrates, to conceal the lewd pranks of his mother. So common a book as Lloyd's Dictionary might have inftru&ed Dr. Warburton in this. "Huic Harpocrati Cupido Veneris filius parentis fuæ rofam dedit in munus, ut fcilicet fi quid licentius di&um, vel a&tum fit in convivio, fciant tacenda effe omnia. Atque idcirco veteres ad finem convivii fub rofa, Anglicè under the rofe, tranfa&ta effe omnia ante digreffum conteftabantur; cujus formæ vis eadem effet, atque ifta, Mio μváμova ovμTÓTAV. Probant hanc rem verfus qui reperiuntur in marmore:

“Eft rosa flos Veneris, cujus quo furta laterent,
"Harpocrati matris dona dicavit amor.
Inde rofam menfis hofpes fufpendit amicis,
Convivæ ut fub ea di&ta tacenda fciant.


• I love no colours; ] Colours is here used ambiguously for tints and deceits. JOHNSON.

So, in Love's Labour's Loft: "

I do fear colourable colours.”


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SOM. Good master Vernon, it is well objected;? If I have feweft, I fubfcribe in filence.

PLAN. And I.

VER. Then, for the truth and plainness of the case, I pluck this pale and maiden bloffom here, Giving my verdict on the white rofe fide.

SOм. Prick not your finger as you pluck it off; Left, bleeding, you do paint the white rofe red, And fall on my fide fo against your will.

VER. If I, my lord, for my opinion bleed,
Opinion fhall be furgeon to my hurt,
And keep me on the fide where ftill I am..
Sом. Well, well, come on: Who elfe?
LAW. Unless my ftudy and my books be falfe,
The argument you held, was wrong in you;
In fign whereof, I pluck a white rofe too.
PLAN. Now Somerfet, where is your argument?
SOм. Here, in my fcabbard; meditating that,
Shall die your white rofe in a bloody red.
PLAN. Mean time, your cheeks dó counterfeit
our rofes;

For pale they look with fear, as witneffing
The truth on our fide.


No, Plantagenet,

'Tis not for fear; but anger,-that thy cheeks

7 well objected; Properly thrown in our way, juftly propofed. JOHNSON.

So, in Chapman's Verfion of the 21ft Book of Homer's Odyssey "Excites Penelope t'objed the prize,


"(The bow and bright ftee.es) to the woers' ftrength." STEEVENS.

but anger,that thy cheeks &c.] i. e. it is not for fear that my cheeks look pale, but for anger; anger produced by this circumftance, namely, that thy cheeks blush, &c. MALONE.

Blush for pure shame, to counterfeit our roses; And yet thy tongue will not confefs thy error. PLAN. Hath not thy rofe a canker, Somerset? SOм. Hath not thy rofe a thorn, Plantagenet? PLAN. Ay, fharp and piercing, to maintain his truth;

Whiles thy confuming canker eats his falfehood. SOм. Well, I'll find friends to wear my bleeding rofes,

That fhall maintain what I have faid is true,
Where false Plantagenet dare not be seen.

PLAN. Now, by this maiden bloffom in my hand, I fcorn thee and thy fashion, peevish boy.

9 I fcorn thee and thy fashion,] So the old copies read, and rightly. Mr. Theobald altered it to faction, not confidering that by fashion is meant the badge of the red rofe, which Somerfet faid he and his friends would be distinguished by. But Mr. Theobald afks, If faction was not the true reading, why Should Suffolk immediately reply,

Turn not thy corns this way, Plantagenet.

Why? becaufe Plantagenet had called Somerfet, with whom Suffolk fided, peevish boy. WARBURTON.

Mr. Theobald with great probability reads-faction. Plantagenet afterward ufes the fame word:


this pale and angry rofe.

"Will I for ever, and my faction, wear." In King Henry V. we have pation for paction.

We should un

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doubtedly read-and thy faction. The old fpelling of this word was faccion, and hence fashion eafily crept into the text. So, in Hall's Chronicle, EDWARD IV. fol. xxii. we ought to beleve to be fent from God, and of hym onely to bee provided a kynge, for to extinguifh partes [i. e. parties of Kyng Henry the VI. the fourth."


both the faccions and and of Kyng Edward

As fashion might have been meant to convey the meaning affigned to it by Dr. Warburton, I have left the text as I found it, allow ing at the fame time the merit of the emendation offered by Mr. Theobald, and countenance by Mr. Malone. STEEVENS.



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