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So I were out of prison, and kept sheep,
I should be as merry as the day is long;
And so I would be here, but that I doubt
My uncle practises more harm to me:
He is afraid of me, and I of him:
Is it my fault that I was Geffrey's son?
No, indeed, is’t not; And I would to heaven,
I were your son, so you would love me, Hubert.

Hub. If I talk to him, with his innocent prate He will awake my mercy, which lies dead: Therefore I will be sudden, and despatch. [ Aside. Arth. Are you fick, Hubert? you look pale to

day: In sooth, I would you were a little sick; That I might fit all night, and watch with you: I warrant, I love you more than you do me.

Hub. His words do take possession of my bosom.Read here, young Arthur. [Showing a paper.] How now, foolish rheum!

[ Aside. Turning dispiteous torture out of door! I must be brief; left resolution drop Out at mine eyes, in tender womanish tears. Can you not read it? is it not fair writ?

Arth. Too fairly, Hubert, for so foul effect : Must you with hot irons burn out both mine eyes ?

Hub. Young boy, I must.

And will you?

And I will. Arth. Have you the heart? When your head did

but ake,

print, so there is no one so careless to have him a wretch-only his right shape to show him a man, his christendome to prove his faith.” Euphues and his England, 1581. See also Vol. VI. p. 201. n. 4. MALONI.

I knit my handkerchief about your brows,
(The best I had, a princess wrought it me,)
And I did never ask it you again :
And with my hand at midnight held your head;
And, like the watchful minutes to the hour,
Still and anon cheer'd up the heavy time;
Saying, What lack you? and, Where lies your grief?
Or, What good love may I perform for you?
Many a poor man's son would have lain still,
And ne'er have spoke a loving word to you;
But you at your fick service had a prince.
Nay, you may think, my love was crafty love,
And call it, cunning; Do, an if you will:
If heaven be pleas'd that you must use me ill,
Why, then you muft.-Will you put out mine eyes?
These eyes, that never did, nor never shall,
So much as frown on you?

I have sworn to do it ; And with hot irons must I burn them out.

ARTH. Ah, none, but in this iron age, would do it! The iron of itself, though heat red-hot, Approaching near these eyes, would drink my tears, And quench his firy indignation,

3- though heat red-hor,] The participle heat, though now obsolete, was in use in our author's time. See Twelfth Night, Vol. IV. p. 8, n. 9.

So, in the sacred writings : “ He commanded that they should heat the furnace one seven times more than it was wont to be heat." Dan. iii. 19. Malone.

* And quench his firy indignation,] The old copythis firy indignation. STEVENS.

We should read either its firy,” or his firy indignation." The late reading was probably an error of the press. His is most in Shakspeare's style. M. Mason.

By this firy indignation, however, he might mean,--the indignation thus produced by the iron being made red-hot for such an inhuman purpose. Malone.

Even in the matter of mine innocence:
Nay, after that, consume away in rust,
But for containing fire to harm mine eye.
Are you more stubborn-hard than hammer'd iron?
An if an angel should have come to me,
And told me, Hubert fhould put out mine eyes,
I would not have believ'd no tongue, but Hubert's. S
Hub. Come forth.


Re-enter Attendants, with cord, irons, &c.

Do as I bid you do. · Arth. O, save me, Hubert, save me! my eyes

are out, Even with the fierce looks of these bloody men.

Hub. Give me the iron, I say, and bind him here.

ARTH. Alas,what need you be soboist'rous-rough? I will not struggle, I will stand stone-still. For heaven's fake, Hubert, let me not be bound ! Nay, hear me, Hubert! drive these men away, And I will fit as quiet as a lamb; I will not stir, nor wince, nor speak a word, Nor look upon the iron angerly :

These laft words are taken from the Bible. In the Epistle to the Hebrews, we read~" a certain fearful looking for of judgement and fiery indignation.” ch. X. V. 27. WHALLEY.

s I would not have believ'd no tongue, but Hubert's.] The old copy, and some of our modern editors, read :

I would not have believ'd him; no tongue but Hubert's. The truth is, that the transcriber, not understanding the power of the two negatives not and no, (which are usually employed not to affirm, but to deny more forcibly,) intruded the redundant pronoun, him. As you like it affords an instance of the phraseology I have defended:

Nor, I am sure, there is no force in eyes
“ That can do hurt." STEEVENS.

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Thrust but these men away, and I'll forgive you,
Whatever torment you do put me to.

HUB. Go, stand within; let me alone with him. - I ATTEND. I am best pleas'd to be from such a deed.

[Exeunt Attendants.
ARTH. Alas! I then have chid away my friend;
He hath a stern look, but a gentle heart:-
Let him come back, that his compassion may
Give life to yours.

Come, boy, prepare yourself.
Arth. Is there no remedy?

None, but to lose your eyes.
Arth. O heaven!-that there were but a mote

in yours,
A grain, a dust, a gnat, a wand'ring hair,
Any annoyance in that precious sense!
Then, feeling what small things are boist'rous there,
Your vile intent must needs seem horrible.
· Hub. Is this your promise? go to, hold your tongue.

Arth. Hubert, the utterance of a brace of tongues
Must needs want pleading for a pair of eyes :
Let me not hold my tongue; let me not, Hubert !

6 a mote in yours,] Old copy—a moth. Steevens.

Surely we should read--a mote. Our author, who has borrowed so much from the sacred writings, without doubt remembered, “ And why beholdelt thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye,” &c. Matth. vii. 3. So, in Hamlet :

" A mote it is, to trouble the mind's eye." A mote is a small particle of ftraw or chaff. It is likewise used by old writers for an atom.

I have since found my conjecture confirmed. Moth was merely the old spelling of mote. In the passage quoted from Hamlet, the word is spelt moth in the original copy, as it is here. So also, in the preface to Lodge's Incarnate Devils of the Age, 4to. 1596: “ they are in the aire, like atomi in fole, MOTHES in the sonne." See also Florio's Italian Dict. 1598: “ Festucco. il moih, a little beam." MALONE.

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Or, Hubert, if you will, cut out my tongue,
So I may keep mine eyes; O, spare mine eyes;
Though to no use, but still to look on you !
Lo, by my troth, the instrument is cold,
And would not harm me.

I can heat it, boy. Arth. No, in good footh; the fire is dead with

grief, Being create for comfort, to be us'd In undeserv'd extremes : See else yourself; There is no malice in this burning coal;' The breath of heaven hath blown his spirit out, And strew'd repentant ashes on his head. Hub. But with my breath I can revive it, boy.

ARTH. And if you do, you will but make it blush, And glow with shame of your proceedings, Hubert: Nay, it, perchance, will sparkle in your eyes; And, like a dog that is compellid to fight, Snatch at his master that doth tarre him on.

i Or, Hubert, if you will, cut out my tongue,] This is according to nature. We imagine no evil so great as that which is near us.

JOHNSON. 8 — the fire is dead with grief, &c.] The sense is: the fire, being created not to hurt, but to comfort, is dead with grief for finding itself used in acts of cruelty, which, being innocent, I have not deserved. Johnson.

9 There is no malice in this burning coal;] Dr. Grey says, “ that no malice in a burning coal is certainly absurd, and that we should read:

There is no malice burning in this coal,” Steevens. Dr. Grey's remark on this passage is an hypercriticism, The coal was still burning, for Hubert says, “ he could revive it with his breath:” but it had lost for a time its power of injuring by the abatement of its heat. M. Mason.

2- tarre him on.] i. e. ftimulate, set him on. Supposed to he derived from Tapéile, excito. The word occurs again in Hamlet : " and the nation holds it no fin to tarre them on to controversy." Again, in Troilus and Cressida:

“ Pride alone must tarre the mastiffs on." STEEVENS.

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