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Still a repairing; ever out of frame;
And never going aright, being a watch,
And being watch'd, that it may still go right?
Nay, to be perjur'd, which is worst of all :
And among three to love the worst of all,
A whitely wanton with a velvet brow,
With two pitch balls stuck in her face for eyes ;
Ay, and hy heav'o, one that will do the deed,
Though Argus were her eunuch and her guard;
And I to sigh for her! to watch for her!
'To pray for her! Go to; it is a plague
That Cupid will impose for my neglect
Of his almighty dreadful little might.
Well, I will love, write, sigh, pray, sue, and groan :
Some mep must love my lady, and some Joan."

The character of Biron drawn by Rosaline and that which Biron gives of Boyet are equally happy. The observations on the use and abuse of study, and on the power of beauty to quicken the understanding as well as the senses, are excellent. The scene which has the greatest dramatick effect is that in which Biron, the king, Longaville, and Dumain, successively detect each other and are detected in their breach of their vow and in their profession of attachment to their several mistresses, in which they suppose themselves to be overheard by no one. The reconciliation between these lovers and their sweethearts is also very good, and the penance which Rosaline imposes on Biron, before he can expect to gain her cousent to marry him, full of propriety and beauty.

Rosaline. Oft have I heard of you, my lord Biron,
Before I saw you : and the world's large tongue
Proclaims you for a man replete with mocks ;
Full of comparisons, and wounding flouts :
Which you on all estates will execute,

That lie within the mercy of your wit.
To weed this wormwood from your faithful brain;
And therewithal to win me, if you please,
(Without the which I am not to be won)
You shall this twelvemonth term from day to day
Visit the speechless sick, and still converse
With groaning wretches ; and your task shall be,
With all the fierce endeavour of your wit,
T' enforce the pained impotent to smile.

Biron. To move wild laughter in the throat of death?
It cannot be : is impossible:
Mirth cannot move a soul in agony.

Rosaline. Why, that's the way to choke a gibing spirit,
Whose influence is begot of that loose grace,
Which shallow laughing hearers give to fools :
A jest's prosperity lies in the ear
Of him that hears it; nev in the tongue
Of him that makes it: then, if sickly ears,
Deafd with the clamours of their own dear groans,
Will hear your idle scorns, continue then,
And I will have you, and that fault withal;
But, if they will not, throw away that spirit,
And I shall find you empty of that fault,
Right joyful of your reformation.

Biron. A twelvemonth? Well, befall what will befall, I'll jest a twelvemonth in a hospital.”

The famous cuckoo-song closes the play : but we shall add no more criticisms : “ the words of Mercury are harsh after the songs of Apollo."


This admirable comedy used to be frequently acted till of late years.

Mr. Garrick's Benedick was one of his most celebrated characters; and Mrs. Jordan, we have understood, played Beatrice very delightfully. The serious part is still the most prominent here, as in other instances that we have noticed. Hero is the principal figure in the piece, and leaves an indelible impression on the mind by her beauty, her tenderness, and the hard trial of her love. The passage in which Claudio first makes a confession of his affection towards her conveys as pleasing an image of the entrance of love into a youthful bosom as can well be imagined.

" Oh, my lord,
When you went onward with this ended action,
I look'd upon her with a soldier's eye,
That lik'd, but had a rougher task in hand
Than to drive liking to the name of love;
But now I am return’d and that war-thoughts
Have left their places vacant; io their rooms
Come thronging soft and delicate desires,
All prompting me how fair young Hero is,
Saying, I lik'd her ere I went to wars."

In the scene at the altar, when Claudio, urged on by the villain Don John, brings the charge of in

continence against her, and as it were divorces her in the very marriage-ceremony, her appeals to her own conscious innocence and honour are made with the most affecting simplicity.

" Claudio. No, Leonato,
I never tempted her with word too large,
But, as a brother to his sister, shew'd,
Bashful sincerity, and comely love.

Hero. And seem'd I ever otherwise to you?

Claudio. Out on thy seeming, I will write against it:
You seem to me as Dian in her orb,
As chaste as is the bud ere it be blown ;
But you are more intemperate in your blood
Than Venus, or those pamper'd animals
That rage in savage sensuality.

Hero. Is my lord well, that he doth speak so wide ?
Leonato. Are these things spoken, or do I but dream!
John. Sir, they are spoken, and these things are true..
Benedick. This looks hol like a nuptial. .
Hero. True ! 0 God!"-

The justification of Hero in the end, and her restoration to the confidence and arms of her lover, is brought about by one of those temporary consignments to the grave of which Shakspeare seems to have been fond. He has perhaps explained the theory of this predilection in the following lines :

Friar. She dying, as it must be so maintain'd,
Upon the instant that she was accus'd,
Shall be lamented, pity'd, and excus'd,
Of every hearer : for it so falls out,
That what we have we prize not to the worth,
While we enjoy it; but being lack'd and lost,
Wby then we rack the value; then we find
The virtue, that possession would not shew us
Whilst it was ours. So will it fare with Claudio :
When he shall hear she dy'd upon his words,
The idea of her love shall sweetly creep

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Into his study of imagination;
And every lovely organ of her life
Shall come apparel'd in more precious habit,
More moving, delicate, and full of life,
Into the eye and prospect of his soul,
Than when she liv'd indeed."

The principal comick characters in Much ADO ABOUT NOTHING, Benedick and Beatrice, are both essences in their kind. His character as a womanhater is admirably supported, and his conversion to matrimony is no less happily effected by the pretended story of Beatrice's love for him. It is hard to say which of the two scenes is the best, that of the trick which is thus practised on Benedick, or that in which Beatrice is prevailed on to take pity on him by overhearing her cousin and her maid declare (which they do on purpose) that he is dying of love for her. There is something delightfully picturesque in the manner in which Beatrice is de.. scribed as coming to hear the plot which is contrived against herself

“For look where Beatrice, like a lapwing, runs Close hy the ground, to hear our conference.”

In consequence of what she hears (not a word of which is true) she exclaims when these good-natured informants are gone,

" What fire is in mine ears? Can this be true ?

Stand I coodemn'd for pride and scorn so much ?
Contempt, farewell ! and maiden pride adieu !

No glory lives behind the back of such.
And, Bepedick, love on, I will requite thee;

Taming my wild heart to thy loving hand;
If thou dost love, my kindness shall incite thee

To bind our loves up in an holy band :

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