Page images

Have stoop'd my neck under your injuries,
And figh'd my English breath in foreign clouds,
Eating the bitter bread of banishment :
Whilft you have fed upon my signories,
Dispark'd my parks,' and fell’d my forest woods ;
From my own windows torn my household coat,"
Raz'd out my impress, leaving me no sign,-
Save men's opinions, and my living blood, -
To show the world I am a gentleman.
*This, and much more, much more than twice all

this, Condemns you to the death :-See them deliver'd

over To execution and the hand of death. Bushy. More welcome is the stroke of death te

me, Than Bolingbroke to England.—Lords, farewell. GREEN. My comfort is,—that heaven will take

our souls, And plague injustice with the pains of hell. BOLING. My lord Northumberland, see them

despatch'd. [Exeunt NorthUMBERLAND and Others, witb


· Dispark'd my parks,] To dispark is to throw down the hedges of an enclosure. Dilepio. I meet with the word in Barret's Alvearie or Quadruple Dictionary, 1580. It also occurs in The Ejtablishment of Prince Heury, 1610: “ Forestes and Parkes of the Prince's disparked and in Lease,” &c. STEEVENS,

2 From my own windows torn my household coat,] It was the practice when coloured glass was in use, of which there are still fome remains in old feats and churches, to anneal the arms of the family in the windows of the house. JOHNSON.

3 Raz'd out my impress, &c.] The impress was a device or motto. Ferne, in his Blazon of Gentry, 1585, observes,“ that the arms, &c. of traitors and rebels may be defaced and removed, wheresoever they are fixed, or set." Steeve NS.

Uncle, you say, the queen is at your house ;
For heaven's fake, fairly let her be entreated :
Tell her, I send to her my kind commends;
Take special care my greetings be deliver'd.

York. A gentleman of mine I have despatch'd
With letters of your love to her at large.
Boling. Thanks, gentle uncle.-Come, lords,

To fight with Glendower and his complices ;
Awhile to work, and, after, holiday.* [Exeunt.
4 Thanks, gentle uncle.Come, lords, away;

To fight with Glendower and his complices;

Awhile to work, and, after, holiday.) Though the intermediate line has taken possession of all the old copies, I have great fufpicion of its being an interpolation; and have therefore ventured to throw it out. The first and third lines rhyme to each other; nor do I imagine this was casual, but intended by the poet. Were we to acknowledge the line genuine, it muft argue the poet of forgetfuless and inattention to history. Bolingbroke is, as it were, but just arrived; he is now at Bristol, weak in his numbers; has had no meeting with a parliament; nor is so far assured of the succession, as to think of going to supprefs insurrections before he is planted in the throne. Besides, we find the opposition of Glendower begins The First Part of K. Henry IV. and Mortimer's defeat by that hardy Welchman is the tidings of the first scene of that play. Again, though Glendower, in the very first year of K. Henry IV. began to be troublesome, put in for the supremacy of Wales, and imprisoned Mortimer; yet it was not till the succeeding year that the King employed any force against him.

This emendation, which I think is juft, has been followed by
Sir T. Hanmer, but is neglected by Dr. Warburton. Johnson.

It is evident from the preceding scene, that there wis a force in Wales, which Bolingbroke might think it necessary to suppress; and why might not Shakspeare call it Glendower's? When we next fee Bolingbroke, he is in Wales, and mentions his having received intelligence that the Welchmen are dispersed. Aard.

Mr. Heath observes, that Bolingbroke marched to Chester, probably with a view to attack the Welsh army headed by Lord Salisbury. He thinks therefore the line is genuine. See sc. iii. p. 283, Stowe expressly says that “ Owen Glendower served King Richard at Flint-Castle." MALONE,


All Airon tam informed has somewhere made the same aburrmation bat d amonabtoto refusenten in borone,


this to troorgrond



The coast of Wales. A casile in view.

Flourish: drunis and trumpets. Enter King RICHARD,

Biskop of Carlisle, AUMERLE, and Soldiers.

K. Rich, Barkloughly castle call you this at hand? Aum. Yea, my lord: How brooks your grace the

air, After late tossing on the breaking seas?'' K. Rich. Needs must I like it well; I weep for

joy, To stand upon my kingdom once again. Dear earth, I do falute thee with my hand, Though rebels wound thee with their horses' hoofs: As a long parted mother with her child Plays fondly with her tears, and smiles in meeting;' So, weeping, smiling, greet I thee, my earth,

4 Here may be properly inserted the last scene of the second act.

Johnson. s After late tosling, &c.] The old copies redundantly read:

After your late toffing, &c. Steevens.

-smiles in meeting;] It has been proposed to read—in Tveeping; and this change the repetition in the next line seems plainly to point out. Steevens.

As a long parted mother with ber child
Plays fondly with her tears, and smiles in meeting;}

* Ως ειπων, αλοχοιο φιλης εν χερσιν εθηκε
« Παιδεον» η Ραρα μιν κηδεί δεξαίο κολπώ

« AAKPYOEN TEAASASA." Hom. Il. Z, Perhaps smiles is here used as a substantive. As a mother plays fondly with her child from whom she has been a long time parted, crying, and at the same time smiling, at meeting him.

It has been proposed to read—smiles in weeping; and I once thought the emendation very plausible. But I am now persuaded the text is right. If we read weeping, the long parted mother and

And do thee favour with my royal hands.
Feed not thy sovereign's foe, my gentle earth,
Nor with thy sweets comfort his rav'nous sense:
But let thy spiders, that suck up thy venom,
And heavy-gaited toads, lie in their way;
Doing annoyance to the treacherous feet,
Which with usurping steps do trample thee.
Yield stinging nettles to mine enemies:
And when they from thy bosom pluck a flower,
Guard it, I pray thee," with a lurking adder ;
Whose double tongue may with a mortal touch
Throw death upon thy sovereign's enemies.-
Mock not my senseless conjuration, lords;
This earth shall have a feeling, and these stones
Prove armed soldiers, ere her native king
Shall falter under foul rebellion's arms.
Bishop. Fear not, my lord;' that Power, that

made you king,
Hath power to keep you king, in spite of all.
The means that heaven yields must be embrac'd,
And not neglected; else, if heaven would,

her child do not meet, and there is no particular cause afligned for
either her smiles or her tears. Malone.

From the actual smiles and tears of the long parted mother, &c.
we may, I think, sufficiently infer that she had met with her child.

STEEVENS. * Guard it, I pray thee,] Guard it, fignifies here, as in many other places, border it. MALONE.

8 This earth shall have a feeling,]. Perhaps Milton had not
forgot this paffage, when he wrote, in his Comus

dumb things shall be mov'd to sympathize,
“ And the brute earth shall lend her nerves, and shake."

9 Fear not, my lord; &c.] Of this speech, the four last lines
were restored from the first edition by Mr. Pope. They were, I
suppose, omitted by the players only to shorten the scene, for
they are worthy of the author and suitable to the personage.


Think, that-to gumb, in this place,

in this place, rather mean, to watch or protect M. Masm.

And we will not, heaven's offer we refuse;'
The proffer'd means of succour and redress.

Aum. He means, my lord, that we are too remiss;
Whilft Bolingbroke, through our security,
Grows strong and great, in substance, and in friends.

K. Rich. Discomfortable cousin! know'st thou not, That, when the searching eye of heaven is hid Behind the globe, and lights the lower world, Then thieves and robbers range abroad unseen, In murders, and in outrage, bloody here; But when, from under this terrestrial ball, He fires the proud tops of the eastern pines, And darts his light through every guilty hole, Then murders, treasons, and detested fins, Thecloak of nightbeing pluck’d from offtheir backs,



else, if heaven would, And we will not, heaven's offer we refuse;] Thus the quarto 1597, except that the word if is wanting. The quarto 1608, and the late editions, read— And we would not. The word if was supplied by Mr. Pope. Both the metre and the sense show that it was accidentally omitted in the first copy. Malone.

and lights the lower world,] The old copies read that lights. The emendation was made by Dr. Johnson. Sense might be obtained by a flight transpofition, without changing the words of the original text:

That when the searching eye of heaven, that lights

The lower world, is hid behind the globe ;By the lower world, as the passage is amended by Dr. Johnson, we muft understand, a world lower than this of ours; I suppose, our Antipodes. MALONE.

That this is the sense of the passage, is obvious from the King's application of the simile:

« So, when this thief, this traitor Bolingbroke,
“ Who all this while hath revell’d in the night,
• Whilft we were wand'ring with the antipodes,

“ Shall see us rising in our throne the east, ” &c. HENLEY. The lower world may signify our world. Malone,

3 He fires the proud tops of the eastern pines,] It is not easy to point out an image more striking and beautiful than this, in any poet, whether ancient or modern. STEEVENS.

« PreviousContinue »