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Enter BiondËLLO. Bion. Master, master! news, old news, and such news as you never heard of!
Bap. Is it new and old too? how may that be?
Bion. Why, Petruchio is coming, in a new hat, and an old jerkin; a pair of old breeches, thrice turned; a pair of boots that have been candle-cases, one buckled, another laced; an old rusty sword ta'en out of the town armory, with a broken hilt, and chapeless; with two broken points:6 His horse hipped with an old mothy
old news,] These words were added by Mr. Rowe, and necessarily, for the reply of Baptista supposes them to have been already spoken; old laughing-old utis, &c. are expressions of that time merely hyperbolical, and have been more than once used by Shakspeare. See note on Henry IV, P. II, Act II, sc. iv. Steevens.
a pair of boots--one buckled, another laced ; an old rusty sword ta'en out of the town armory, with a broken hilt, and chapeless; with two broken points :) How a sword should have two broken points, I cannot tell. There is, I think, a transposition caused by the seeming relation of point to sword. I read, a pair of boots, one buckled, another laced with two broken points ; an old rusty sword with a broken hilt, and chapeless. Johnson.
I suspect that several words giving an account of Petruchio's belt are wanting. The belt was then broad and rich, and worn on the outside of the doublet.--Two broken points might therefore bave concluded the description of its ostentatious meanness.
Steevens. The broken points might be the two broken tags to the laces.
Tollet. that have been candle-cases,] That is, I suppose, boots long left off, and after having been converted into cases to hold the ends of candles, returning to their first office. I do not know that I have ever met with the word candle-case in any other place, except the following preface to a dramatic dialogue, 1604, entitled The Case is Älter'd, How?-_"I write upon cases, neither knife-cases, pin-cases, nor candle-cases."
saddle, the stirrups of no kindred:7 besides, possessed with the glanders, and like to mose in the chine; troubled with the lampass, infected with the fashions, full of windgalls, sped with spavins, raied with the yellows, past cure of the fives, 8 stark, spoiled with the staggers, begnawn with the bots; swayed in the back, and shoulder-shotten; ne'er-legged before, and with a half-checked bit, and a head-stall of sheep's leather; which, being restrained to keep him from stumbling, hath been often burst, and now repaired with knots: one girt six times
And again, iņ How to choose a Good Wife from a Bad, 1602:
“ A bow-case, a cap-case, a comb-case, a lute-case, a fiddlecase, and a candle-case." Steevens.
the stirrups of no kindred:] So, in Sidney's Arcadia, Lib. III: “To this purpose many willing hands were about him, letting him have reynes, pettrel, with the rest of the furniture, and very brave bases; but all comming from divers horses, neither in colour nor fashion showing any kindred one with the other.”
Steevens. infected with the fashions, - past cure of the fives,] Fashions. So called in the West of England, but by the best writers on farriery, farcens, or farcy.
Fives. So called in the West: vives elsewhere, and avives by the French ; 'a distemper in horses, little differing from the strangles. Grey.
Shakspeare is not the only writer who uses fashions for farcy. So, in Decker's comedy of Old Fortunatus, 1600:
“ Shad. What shall we learn by travel ? " Andel. Fashions.
“ Shad. That 's a beastly disease.” Again, in The New Ordinary, by Brome:
My old beast is infected with the fashions, fashion-sick." Again, in Decker's Guls Hornbook, 1609: “ Fashions was then counted a disease, and horses died of it.” Steevens.
swayed in the back,] The old copy haswaid. Correct. ed by Sir T. Hanmer. Malone.
So, in Philemon Holland's translation of the 28th Book of Pliny's Natural History, ch. iv, p. 300: “. for let them be swaied in the backe, or hipped by some stripe," &c. Steevens.
ne'er legg'd before,] i. e. founder'd in his fore-feet; having, as the jockies term it, never a fore leg to stand on. The subsequent words-—" which being restrained to keep him from stumbling,"_seem to countenance this interpretation. The modern editors read-near-legg'd before; but to go near before is not reckoned a defect, but a perfection, in a horse. Malone.
pieced, and a woman's crupper of velure,? which hath two letters for her name, fairly set down in studs, and here and there pieced with packthread.
Bap. Who comes with him?
Bion. O, sir, his lackey, for all the world caparisoned like the horses with a linen stock3. on one leg, and a kersey boot-hose on the other, gartered with a red and blue list; an old hat, and The humour of forty fancies pricked in 't for a feather:4 a monster, a very monster
crupper of velure,) Velure is velvet. Velours, Fr. So, in The World tossed at Tennis, by Middleton and Rowley:
“ Come, my well-lined soldier (with valour,
“Not velure) keep me warm.”
an old hat,
- stock) i. e. stocking. So, in Twelfth Night: “ - it [his leg] does indifferent well in a flame-coloured stock."
Steevens. 4 an old hat and The humour of forty fancies pricked in's for a feather: ] This was some ballad or drollery at that time, which the poet here ridicules, by making Petruciiio prick it up in his foot-boy's hat for a feather. His speakers are perpetually quoting scraps and stanzas of old ballads, and often very 'ob. scurely; for, so well are they adapted to the occasion, that they seem of a piece with the rest. In Shakspeare's time, the king dom was over-run with these doggrel compositions, and he seems to have borne them a very particular grudge. He frequently ri. dicules both them and their makers, with excellent humour. In Much Ado about Nothing, he makes Benedick say: “Prove that ever I lose more blood with love than I get again with drinking, prick out my eyes with a ballad-maker's pen." As the bluntness of it would make the execution of it extremely painful. And again, in Troilụs and Cressida, Pandarus in his distress having repeated a very stupid stanza from an old ballad, says, with the highest humour: “There never was a truer rhyme; let's cast away nothing, for we may live to have need of such a serse. -We see it, we see it.” Warburton.
I have some doubts concerning this interpretation. A fancy appears to have been some ornament worn formerly in the hat. So Peacham, in his Worth of a Penny, describing an indigent and discontented soldat," says, “he walks with liis arms folded, his belt without a sword or rapier, that, perhaps, being somewhere in trouble; a hat without a band, hanging over his eyes; only it wears a weather-beaten fancy for fashion-sake.” This lackey therefore did not wear a common fancy in his hat, but some fan. tastical ornament, comprizing the humour of forty different fana
in apparel; and not like a christian footboy, or a gentleman's lackey. Tra. 'Tis some odd humour pricks him to this
Bap. I am glad he is come, howsoe'er he comes.
Bion. No, sir; I say, his horse comes with him on his back.
Bap. Why, that 's all one.
Bion. Nay, by saint Jamy, I hold you a penny, A horse and a man is more than one, and yet not many.
Enter PETRUCHIO and GRUMI0.5 Pet. Come, where be these gallants? who is at home?
cies. Such, I believe, is the meaning: A couplet in one of Sir John Davies's Epigrams, 1598, may also add support to my in. terpretation :
“ Nor for thy,love will I once gnash a bricke,
“Or some pied colours in my bonnet sticke.” A fancy, however, meant also a love-song or sonnet, or other poem. So, in Sapho and Phao, 1591: “I must now fall from love to labour, and endeavour with mine oar to get a fare, not with my pen to write a fancy.” If the word was used here in this sense, the meaning is, that the lackey had stuck forty ballads together, and made something like a feather out of them.
Malone. Dr. Warburton might have strengthened his supposition by observing, that the Humour of Forty Fancies was probably a col. lection of those short poems which are called Fancies, by Falstaff, in The Second Part of King Henry IV: “
sung those tunes wbich he heard the carmen whistle, and swore they were his Fancies, his good-nights." Nor is the Humour of Forty Fancies a more extraordinary title to a collection of poems, than the wellknown Hundred sundrie Flowers bounde up in one small Poesie.—A Paradise of dainty Devises.---The Arbor of amorous Conceits. The gorgeous Gallery of gallant Inventions — The Forest of Histories.The Ordinary of Humors, &c. Chance, at some future period, may establish as a certainty what is now offered as a conjecture. A penny book, containing forty short poems, would, properly managed, furnish no unapt imitation of a plume of feathers for the hat of a humourist's servant. Steevens.
5 Enter Petruchio and Grumio.] Thus, in the original play: “ Enter Ferando, basely attired, and a red cap on his heal.
Bap. You are welcome, sir.
And yet I come not well.
Not so well apparell’d As I wish you were.
Pet. Were it better I should rush in thus. But where is Kate? where is my lovely bride?How does my father?-Gentles, methinks you frown; And wherefore gaze this goodly company; As if they saw some wondrous monument, Some comet, or unusual prodigy?
Bap. Why, sir, you know, this is your wedding-day: First were we sad, fearing you would not come; Now sadder, that you come so unprovided. Fy! doff this habit, shame to your estate, An eye-sore to our solemn festival.
“ Feran. Good morrow, father: Polidor well met, “You wonder, I know, that I have staide so long.
Alfon. Yea, marry sonne: we were almost persuaded “ That we should scarce have had our bridegroome heere: “But say, why art thou thus basely attired?
“ Feran. Thus richly, father, you should have saide ; “ For when my wife and I are married once, “ Shee's such a shrew, if we should once fall out, “ Sheele pull my costly sutes over mine ears, “ And therefore I am thus attir'd a while: “For many things I tell you 's in my head, “ And none must know thereof but Kate and I; "For we shall live like lambes and lions sure: " Nor lambes to lions never were so tame, “ If once they lie within the lions pawes, “ As Kate to me, if we were married once: “ And therefore, come, let's to church presently.
" Pol. Fie, Ferando! not thus attired: for shame, “ Come to my chamber, and there suite thyselfe, “Of twenty sutes that I did never weare.
“ Feran. Tush, Polidor: I have as many sutes “ Fantastike made to fit my humour so, “As any in Athens; and as richly wrought " As was the massie robe that late adorn'd “ The stately legat of the Persian king, " And this from them I have made choise to weare.
“ Alfon. I prethee, Ferando, let me intreat, “ Before thou go'st unto the church with us, “ To put some other sute upon thy backe.
“ Feran. Not for the world,” &c. Steevens.