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Cer. Hail, many-colour'd messenger, that ne'er
Iris. A contract of true love to celebrate;
Tell me, heavenly bow,
Of her society Be not afraid : I met her deity Cutting the clouds towards Paphos; and her son Dove-drawn with her: here thought they to have
done Some wanton charm upon this man and maid, Whose vows are, that no bed-rite shall be paid
$ My bosky acres, &c.] Bolky is woody. Boíky acres are fields divided from each other by hedge-rows. Boscus is middle Latin for wood. Bosquet, Fr. So Milion:
“ And every bosky bourn from side to side.” Again, in K. Eduard 1. 1599:
Haie him from hence, and in this bosky wood
Bury his corps.” STEEVENS. + -- to this short-grass'd green?] The old copy reads fhort-gras'd green. Short-graz'd green means grazed so as to b: jhort. The Borrection was made by Mr. Rowe. STEEVENS.
Till Hymen's torch be lighted: but in vain;
Highest queen of state, Great Juno comes; I know her by her gait.
Enter Juno. Jun. How does my bounteous fister? Go with
me, To bless this twain, that they may prosperous be, And honour'd in their issue.
Juno. Honour, riches, marriage-blessing,
Long continuance, and increasing,
s Higheft queen of flate,
Great Juno comes; I know her by her gait.] Mr. Whalley thinks this passage a remarkable instance of Shakspeare's knowledge of ancient poetic story; and that the hint was furnished by the Divum incedo Regina of Virgil.
John Taylor, the water-poet, declares, that he never learned his Accidence, and that Latin and French were to him Heathen Greek; yet, by the help of Mr. Whalley's argument, I will prove him a learned man, in spite of every thing he may say to the contrary: for thus he makes a gallant address his lady ;
i Most inestimable magazine of beauty! in whom the port and majesty of Juno, the wisdom of Jove's brain-bred girle, and the feature of Cytherea, have their domestical habitation.” FARMER. So, in The Arraignement of Paris, 1584: - First statelie Juno, with her porte and grace.”
Cer. Earth's increase,' and foison plenty;'
Barns, and garners never empty;
Ceres' blessing fo is on you.
6 Earth's increase, and foifon plenty ; &c.] All the editions, that I have ever feen, concur in placing this whole fonnet to Juno; but very absurdly, in my opinion. I believe every accurate reader, who is acquainted with poetical history, and the distinct offices of these two goddeses, and who then feriously reads over our author's lines, will agree with me, that Ceres's name ought to have been placed where I have now prefixed it. THEOBALD.
And is not in the old copy. It was added by the editor of the fecond folio. Earth's increase, is the produce of the earth. The expreffion is fcriptural : “ Then all the earth bring forth her increase, and God, even our God, shall give us his blessing.” Psalm lxvii. MALONE.
This is one amongst a multitude of emendations which Mr. Malone acknowledges to have been introduced by the Editor of the second Folio; and yet, in contradiction to himself in his Prolegomena, he depreciates the second edition, as of no importance or value.
Fenton.' 7 — foison plenty;] i. e. plenty to the utmost abundance; foison signifying plenty. See p. 62. STEEVENS. 8 Harmonious charmingly:] Mr. Edwards would read :
“ Harmonious charming lay." For though (says he) the benediction is sung by two goddesses, it is yet but one lay or hymn. I believe, however, this passage appears as it was written by the poet, who, for the sake of the verse, made the words change places.
We might read (transferring the last fyllable of the second word to the end of the first) " Harmoniously charming."
Ferdinand has already praised this aerial Masque as an object of fight; and may not improperly or inelegantly subjoin, that the
To think these spirits ?
Spirits, which by mine art
Let me live here ever ; So rare a wonder'd father, and a wife, Make this place Paradise. [Juno and Ceres whisper, and fend Iris on employment.} PRO.
Sweet now, filence: Juno and Ceres whisper seriously; There's something else to do: hush, and be mute, Or else our spell is marr’d. Iris. You nymphs, callid Naiads, of the wan
dring brooks, With your sedg'd crowns, and ever-harmless looks, Leave your crisp channels, and on this green land
+ Answer your summons; Juno does command : Come, temperate nymphs, and help to celebrate A contract of true love ; be not too late.
charm of found was added to that of visible grandeur. Both June and Ceres are fupposed to sing their parts. STEEVENS. A fimilar inversion occurs in A Midsummer Night's Dream :
But miferable moft to live unlov'd." MAŁONE. "- a wonder'd fatber,] i. e. a father able to perform or pro duce such wonders. Steve NS.
3-wandring brooks,] The modern editors readwinding brooks, The old copy--windring. I fuppose we should read wandring, as it is here printed. STEVENS.
4 Leave your crisp channels,] Criff, i. e. curling, winding. Lat. crispus. Só Henry IV, Part I. AA I. sc. iv. Hotspur, speaking of the river Severn:
“ And hid his crifped head in the hollow bank." Crifp, however, may allude to the little wave or curl (as it is commonly called) that che gentleft wind occasions on the surface of waters. STEEVENS.
Enter certain Nymphs. You fun-burn'd ficklemen, of August weary, Come hither from the furrow, and be merry; Make holy-day: your rye-straw hats put on, And these fresh nymphs encounter every one In country footing. Enter certain Reapers, properly habited: they join with
the Nymphs in a graceful dance; towards the end whereof Prospero starts suddenly, and speaks ; after which, to a strange, bollow, and confused noise, they beavily vanish.
Pro. (afide.] I had forgot that foul conspiracy Of the beast Caliban, and his confederates, Against my life; the minute of their plot Is almost come.-[To the spirits.] Well done ;
avoid ;- no more. Fer. This is most strange : 4 your father's in
some passion That works him strongly. MIRA.
Never till this day, Saw I him touch'd with anger so distemper'd.
Pro. You do look, my son, in a mov'd fort, As if you were dismay'd: be cheerful, fir: Our revels now are ended: these our actors, As I foretold you, were all spirits, and Are melted into air, into thin air: And, like the baseless fabrick of this vision,
* This is most strange:] I have introduced the word of, on account of the metre, which otherwise is defective. In the first line of Prospero's next speech there is likewise an omiffion, but I have not ventured to supply it. Steevens.
s And, like the baseless fabrick of this vifon, &c.] The exact period at which this play was produced is unknown: it was not,