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We are denied access unto his person Even by those men that most have done us wrong. The dangers of the days but newly gone, (Whose memory is written on the earth With yet-appearing blood), and the examples Of every
minute's instance 11 (present now), Have put us in these ill beseeming arms : Not to break peace, or any branch of it; But to establish here a peace indeed, Concurring both in name and quality.
West. When ever yet was your appeal denied ? Wherein have you been galled by the king ? ? What
hath been suborn’d to grate on you?
Arch. My brother general, the commonwealth,
10 In Holinshed the Archbishop says, Where he and his companie were in armes, it was for feare of the king, to whom he could have no free accesse, by reason of such a multitude of flatterers as were about him.'
11'. Examples of every minute's instance' are Examples which every minute instances or supplies,' Which even the present minute presses on their notice.
12 Commotion's bitter edge? that is, the edge of bitter strife and commotion; the sword of rebellion. This line is omitted in the folio.
13 The second line of this very obscure speech is omitted in the folio. As the passage stands I can make nothing of it; nor
any of the explanations which have been offered appear to me satisfactory. I think with Malone that a line has been lost, though I do not agree with him in the sense he would give to it. It is with all proper humility I offer the following reading :
My quarrel general, the commonwealth,
I make my quarrel in particular.' i. e. my general cause of discontent is public wrongs, my particular cause the death of my own brother, who was beheaded by
West. There is no need of any such redress; Or, if there were, it not belongs to you.
Mowb. Why not to him, in part; and to us all, That feel the bruises of the days before; And suffer the condition of these times To lay a heavy and unequal hand Upon our honours ? West.
O my good lord Mowbray 14, Construe the times to their necessities, And you shall
say indeed,—it is the time,
Mowb. What thing in honour had my father lost,
• The archbishop—who bears hard
His brother's death at Bristol, the Lord Scroop.' The answer of Westmoreland makes it obvious that something aboat redress of public wrongs should have fallen from the archbishop. Johnson proposed to read quarrel instead of brother in the first line, and explained the passage much as I have done. I have merely superadded the line, which seems to me necessary to complete the sense, and make Westmoreland's reply intelligible.
14 The thirty-seven following lines are not in the quarto. 15 i.e. their lances fixed in the rest for the encounter.
16 It has been already observed that the beaver was a moveable piece of the helmet, which lifted up or down, to enable the bearer to drink or breathe more freely.
Their eyes of fire sparkling through sights 17 of steel,
from his grace, That he will give you audience: and wherein It shall appear
demands are just, You shall enjoy them; every thing set off, That might so much as think you
enemies. Mowb. But he hath forc'd us to compel this offer; And it proceeds from policy, not love.
West. Mowbray, you overween, to take it so; This offer comes from mercy, not from fear; For, lo! within a ken, our army lies; Upon mine honour, all too confident
17 The perforated part of the helmets, through which they could see to direct their aim. Visière, Fr.
To give admittance to a thought of fear.
Mowb. Well, by my will, we shall admit no parley.
West. That argues but the shame of your offence: A rotten case abides no handling.
Hast. Hath the Prince John a full commission, In very ample virtue of his father, To hear, and absolutely to determine Of what conditions we shall stand upon ?
West. That is intended 20 in the generals name:
20 Intended is understood, i. e. meant without expressing it. Entendu, Fr.; subauditur, Lat.
21 The old copy reads confin'd. Johnson proposed to read consign'd; which must be understood in the Latin sense, consignatus, signed, sealed, ratified, confirmed; which was indeed the old meaning according to the dictionaries. Shakspeare uses consign and consigning in other places in this sense.
22° Awful for lawful; or under the due awe of authority. Thus in The Two Gentlemen of Verona :
* From the society of awful men.' It is also used in the same sense in Pericles :
• A better prince and benign lord
Prove awful both in deed and word.'
West. This will I show the general. Please you,
lords, In sight of both our battles we may meet: And either end in peace, which heaven so frame! Or to the place of difference call the swords Which must decide it. Arch.
My lord, we will do so.
[Exit WEST. Mowb. There is a thing within my bosom, tells me, That no conditions of our peace can stand.
Hast. Fear you not that: if we can make our peace. Upon such large terms, and so absolute, As our conditions shall consist 23 upon, Our
peace shall stand as firm as rocky mountains. Mowb. Ay, but our valuation shall be such, That every slight and false-derived cause, Yea, every idle, nice 24, and wanton reason, Shall, to the king, taste of this action : That, were our royal faiths 25 martyrs in love, We shall be winnow'd with so rough a wind, That even our corn shall seem as light as chaff, And good from bad find no partition. Arch. No, no, my lord; Note this,—the king is
weary Of dainty and such picking 2 grievances : For he hath found,—to end one doubt by death, Revives two greater in the heirs of life. And therefore will he wipe his tables 27 clean; And keep no tell-tale to his memory, 23 To consist, to rest; consisto.--Baret. So in Pericles :
• Then welcome peace, if he on peace consist.' 24 Trivial.
25 The faith due to a king. So in King Henry VIII. :— The citizens have shown at full their royal minds,' i. e.' their minds well affected to the king.
26 Piddling, insignificant. 27 Alluding to the table books of slate, ivory, &c, used by our