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Thou art more deep damn'd than prince Lucifer: 8
There is not yet so ugly a fiend of hell
As thou shalt be, if thou didst kill this child.

Hub. Upon my soul,

If thou didst but consent
To this most cruel act, do but despair,
And, if thou want’st a cord, the smallest thread
That ever spider twisted from her womb
Will serve to strangle thee; a rush will be
A beam to hang thee on; or, would'st thou drown

Put but a little water in a spoon,
And it shall be as all the ocean,
Enough to stifle such a villain up.-
I do suspect thee very grievously.

Hub. If I in act, consent, or sin of thought,
Be guilty of the stealing that sweet breath
Which was embounded in this beauteous clay,
Let hell want pains enough to torture me!
I left him well.

8 Thou art more deep damn'd than prince Lucifer :] So, in the old play:

“ Hell, Hubert, trust me, all the plagues of hell
“ Hangs on performance of this damned deed;
“ This seal, the warrant of the body's bliss,

“ Ensureth Satan chieftain of thy soul.” MALONE. 9 There is not yet, &c.] I remember once to have met with a book, printed in the time of Henry VIII. (which Shakspeare possibly might have seen,) where we are told that the deformity of the condemned in the other world, is exactly proportioned to the degrees of their guilt. The author of it obferves how difficult it would be, on this account, to distinguish between Belzebub and Judas Iscariot. Steevens.

a drown thyself,] Perhaps thyself is an interpolation. It certainly spoils the measure; and drown is elsewhere used by our author as a verb neuter. Thus, in King Richard III: “ Good lord, methought, what pain it was to drown.


BAST. . Go, bear him in thine arms. I am amaz’d, methinks; and lose my way Among the thorns and dangers of this world. How easy dost thou take all England up! From forth this morsel of dead royalty, The life, the right, and truth of all this realm Is fled to heaven; and England now is left To tug, and scamble, and to part by the teeth The unowed interest? of proud-swelling state. Now, for the bare-pick'd bone of majesty, Doth dogged war bristle his angry crest, And snarleth in the gentle eyes of peace : Now powers from home, and discontents at home, Meet in one line; and vast confusion waits (As doth a raven on a sick-fallen beast,) The imminent decay of wrested pomp. Now happy he, whose cloak and cinctures can Hold out this tempest. Bear away that child, And follow me with speed; I'll to the king : A thousand businesses are brief in hand, And heaven itself doth frown upon the land. [Exeunt.

9 I am amaz’d,] i. e. confounded. So, King John, p. 133, says: "

I was amaz'd “ Under the tide." Steevens. 2 To tug, and scamble,] So, in K. Henry V. sc. i:

“ But that the scambling and unquiet time." Scamble and scramble have the same meaning. See note on the passage quoted. STEEVENS.

3 The unowed interest - 1 i. e. the intereft which has no proper owner to claim it. Steevens.

That is, the interest which is not at this moment legally pollefsed by any one, however rightfully entitled to it. On the death of Arthur, the right to the English crown devolved to his fifter, Eleanor.

MALONE. 4 The imminent decay of wrested pomp.] Wrested pomp is greatness obtained by violence. Johnson.

Rather, greatness wrested from its possessor. MALONE.

5 and cincture-] The old copy reads—center, probably for ceinture, Fr. STEVENS.

The emendation was made by Mr. Pope. MALONE,


The fame. A Room in the Palace. Enter King John, Pandulph with the Crown, and


K. John. Thus have I yielded up into your hand The circle of my glory. PAND.

Take again

Giving John the Crown.
From this my hand, as holding of the pope,
Your sovereign greatness and authority.
K. John. Now keep your holy word: go meet

the French;
And from his holiness use all your power
To stop their marches, 'fore we are inflam’d.“
Our discontented counties 7 do revolt ;
Our people quarrel with obedience;
Swearing allegiance, and the love of foul,
To stranger blood, to foreign royalty.
This inundation of mistemper'd humour
Rests by you only to be qualified.
Then pause not; for the present time's so sick,


use all your power To pop their marches, 'fore we are inflamd.] This cannot be right, for the nation was already as much inflamed as it could be, and so the King himself declares. We should read for instead of 'fore, and then the passage will run thus :

- use all your power
Toftop their marches, for we are inflam'd;

Our discontented counties do revolt, &c. M. MASON, 7 counties -] Perhaps counties, in the present instance, do not mean the divisions of a kingdom, but lords, nability, as in Romeo and Juliet, Much ado, &c. STEVENS.

That present medicine must be minister'd,
Or overthrow incurable ensues.

Pand. It was my breath that blew this tempeft up,
Upon your stubborn usage of the pope :
But, since you are a gentle convertite,?
My tongue shall hush again this storm of war,
And make fair weather in your blustering land.

7- a gentle convertite,] A convertite is a convert. So, in Marlow's Jew of Malta, 1633 :

Gov. Why, Barabas, wilt thou be christened ? Bar. No, governour; I'll be no convertite." STEEVENS.

The same expression occurs in As you like it, where Jaques, speaking of the young Duke, says:

“ There is much matter in these convertites.In both these places, the word convertite means a repenting finner; not, as Steevens says, a convert, by which, in the language of the present time, is meant a person who changes from one religion to another; in which sense the word could neither apply to K. John, or to Duke Frederick : In the sense I have given it, it will apply to both. M. MASON.

A convertite (a word often used by our old writers, where we should now use convert,) fignified either, one converted to the faith, or one reclaimed from worldly pursuits, and devoted to penitence and religion.

Mr. M. Mason says, a convertite cannot mean a convert, because the latter word “ in the language of the present time means a person that changes from one religion to another." But the question is, not what is the language of the present time, but what was the language of Shakspeare's age. Marlowe uses the word convertite exactly in the sense now affixed to convert. John, who had in the former part of this play asserted in very strong terms the supremacy of the king of England in all ecclesiastical matters, and told Pandulph that he had no reverence for “ the Pope or his ufurp'd authority,” having now made his peace with the ' holy church," and resigned his crown to the Pope's representative, is considered by the legate as one newly converted to the true faith, and very properly styled by him a convertite. The same term, in the second sense above mentioned, is applied to the usurper, Duke Frederick, in As you Like it, on his having “ put on a religious life, and thrown into neglect the pompous court":

out of these convertites “ There is much matter to be heard and learn’d."

MALONE. live.

On this Ascension-day, remember well,
Upon your oath of service to the pope,
Go I to make the French lay down their arms.

[Exit. K. John. Is this Ascension-day? Did not the

Say, that, before Ascension-day at noon,
My crown I should give off? Éven so I have:
I did suppose, it should be on constraint;
But, heaven be thank'd, it is but voluntary.

Enter the Bastard.
Bast. All Kent hath yielded ; nothing there holds

But Dover castle: London hath receiv'd,
Like a kind host, the Dauphin and his powers :
Your nobles will not hear you, but are gone
To offer service to your enemy;
And wild amazement hurries up and down
The little number of your doubtful friends.

K. John. Would not my lords return to me again,
After they heard young Arthur was alive?
Bast. They found him dead, and cast into the

streets ; An empty casket, where the jewel of life 8 By some damn'd hand was robb’d and ta’en away. K. youn. That villain Hubert told me, he did

8 An empty caset, where the jewel of life-] Dryden has transferred this image to a speech of Antony, in All for Love : An empty circle, since the jewel's gone ”.

Steevens. The same kind of imagery is employed in K. Richard II :

“ A jewel in a ten-times-barr'd-up chest
“ Is a bold spirit in a loyal breaft.” MALONE.

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