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roth; + carta,
A dozen years; within which space she died,
Ari. Yes; Caliban her son,
Pro. Dull thing, I say so; he, that Caliban,
Ari. I thank thee, master.
Pro. If thou more murmur'st, I will rend an oak,
Ari. Pardon, master:
Pro. Do so; and after two days
Ari. That's my noble master!
Pro. Go make thyself like to a nymph o' the sea 8 :
a nymph o' the sea.] There does not appear to be sufficient cause why Ariel should assume this new shape, as he was to be invisible to all eyes but those of Prospero, STEEVENS.
Mira. 'The strangeness of your story put
Pro. Shake it off: Come on;
Mira. 'Tis a villain, fir,
Pro. But, as ’tis,
Cal. [1Vithin.] There's wood enough within.
Enter Ariel like a water-nymph.
self Upon thy wicked dam, come forth !
. The strangeness] Why should a wonderful story produce sleep? I believe experience will prove, that any violent agitation of the mind easily subsides in ilumber, especially when, as in Profpero's relation, the last images are pleasing. JOHNSON. The poet seems to have been apprehensive that the audience
, as well as Miranda, would sleep over this long but necessary tale
, and therefore strives to break it. First, by making Profpero divert himself of his magic robe and wand; then by waking her attention no less than six times by verbal interruption ; then by varying the action when he rises and bids her continue fitting : and lastly, by carrying on the business of the fable while Miranda Neeps, by which she is continued on the stage till the poet occafion for her again. WARNER.
mother brub'd With raven's feather from unwholsome fen,
Drop on you both!] Shakespeare hath very artificially given the air of the antique to the language of Caliban, in order to heighten the grotesque of his character. As here he uses svicked for uncboljome. So fir John Maundevil, in his travels, p. 334. edit. Lond. 1725.--at alle tymes brennethe a vesselle of crisialle fulle of bawme for to zeven gode smelle and odour to the ema perour, and to voyden arvey alle WYKKEDE eyres and corrupciouns. It was a tradition, it seems, that lord Falkland, lord c. J. Vaughan, and Mr. Selden concurred in observing, that Shakespeare had not only found out a new character in his Caliban, but had also devised and adapted a new manner of language for that character. What they meant by it, without doubt, was, that Shakespeare gave his langage a certain grotesque air of the favage and antique ; which it certainly has. But Dr. Bentley took this, of a new language, literally; for speaking of a phrase in Milton, which he suppofed altogether absurd and unmeaning, he says, Satan had not the privilege as Caliban in Shakespeare, to use netu phrase and diction unknown to all others
to practise distances is still a Caliban stile. Note on Milton's Paradise Loft, 1. iv. v.945. But I know of no such Caliban stile in Shakespeare, that hath new phrase and diction unknown to all others.
As wicked derv, -] Wicked; having baneful qualities. So
So in the Booke of Haukyng, &c. bl. 1. no date. “ If a wycked
Drop on you both! a south-west blow on ye,
3 urchins, ] i.e. hedgehogs.
Urchins are enumerated by Reginald Scott among other terrise beings. -to fold thyself up like an archin."
Chapman's May Day, 1611. Again in Selimus Emperor of the Turks, 1638.
" What are the urchins crept out of their dens
• Under the conduct of this porcupine !" Urchins are perhaps here put for fairies. Milton in his Masque speaks of “urchin blasts,” and we still call any little dwarfish child, an urchin. The word occurs again in the next act. The schinus, or fea hedge-bog, is still called the archin. Sreevens.
3 for that vaft of night that they may work,] The vast of night means the night which is naturally empty and deserted, without action; or when all things lying in ileep and filence, makes the world appear one great uninhabited waste. So in Hamlet ;
" In the dead waste and middle of the night." It has a meaning like that of nox vasta.
Perhaps, however, it may be used in a signification somewhat different, in Pericles Prince of Tyre, 1609.
“ Thou God of this great vast, rebuke the surges.". Vaffum is likewise the ancient law term for waste uncultivated land, and, with this meaning, vast is used by Chapman in his Shadorı of Night, 1594.
«i - When unlightfome, vast and indigest
“ The formeless inatter of this world did lye." It should be rernembered, that, in the pneumatólogy of former ages, these particulars were settled with the most minute exactness, and the different kinds of visionary beings had different allotments of time suitable to the variety or consequence of their employments. During these spaces, they were at liberty to act, but were always obliged to leave off at a certain hour, that they might not interfere in that portion of night which belong'd to others. Among these we may suppose urchins to have had a part subjected to their dominion. "To this limitation of time Shakespeare alludes again in K. Lear. He begins at curfew, and walks till the second cock. ST2EVENS,
Cal. I must eat my dinner.
Pro. Thou most lying slave,
Cal. Oh ho, oh ho!-wou'd it had been done!
Pro. 4 Abhorred flave;
4 Abhorred Nave;] This speech, which the old copy gives to Miranda, is very judiciously bestowed by Mr. Theobald on ProIpero. JOHNSON.
The modern editions take this speech from Miranda, and give it to Prospero ; though there is nothing in it but what the may speak with the greatest propriety; especially as it accounts for her being enough in the way and power of Caliban, to enable him to make the attempt complained of. The
poet himself shews he intended Miranda should be his tutoress, when he makes Caliban say, " I've seen thee in her, my mistress shewed me thee “ and thy dog, and thy bush ;" to Stephano, who had just assured the moniter he was the man in the moon. Holt.