Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

member, (31) one said, there was no falt in the lines, to make the matter favoury; nor no matter in the phrase, that might indite the author of affection ; but call'd it, an honest method. One speech in it I chiefly lov’d; 'twas Æneas's tale to Dido ; and thereabout of it especially, where he speaks of Priam's slaughter. If

(31) I remember, one said, there was no salt in the lines to make the
matter fazoury.] i.e. That there was no poignancy of wit, or viru.
lence of jarire in them, as I had formerly explain'd this paíiage. Mr.
Pope has fallen upon me with a sneer, and triumphs that I fouid
be so ridiculous to think that satire can have any place in trager's.
Jdid not mean, that satire was to make its subject, or that the pas-
hons were to be purg'd by it: may not a sharp and sarcaflical senti.
m.ent, for all that, occasionally arise from the matter? What does
this gentleman think of irony ? Is it not one species of satire ? And
yet Monsieur Hedelin (almoit as good a judge as Mr. Pope in these
matters) tells us, it is a figure entirely theatrical, Or what does
Mr. Pope think of such sentences as there?
-Frailly, thy name is woman !

Hamlet,
In second husband let me be accurft !
None wed the second, but who kill'd the first.

Ibid,
At a few drops of women's rheum, which are
As cheap as lics, he sold the blood and labour
Of our great action.

Coriolanus,
woman! woman! woman! All the God's
Have not such pow'r of doing good to men,
As you of doing barm,

Dryden's All for Love, And to borrow one instance from an antient, who has outgone all the others quoted, in the ítrength of his sarcasm,

-χρήν γαρ αλλοθέν ποθεν βοτες TIαδας ποιείσθαι, θήλυ δ' εκ είναι γένος.

"Ουτω δ' αν εκ των οδών ανθρώωοις κακόν. Eurip. in Medea, I chose this paftige, because, I think, our Milion has left a fine paraphrase upon it; and, I doubt nut, had the Greek pcet in his eyes

Oh, why did God,
Creator wise, that peopled highest heav'n
With spirits masculine, create at lait
This novelty on earth, this fair defeet
Of Nature, and not fill the world at once
With men, as angels, and not fernirine ;

Or find some other way to generate mankind.
If Mr. Pope does not think these paffages to be satire, and yet they
are ali in tragedies, I must beg leave to diffent from him in opinion,
Or, to conclude, has Mr. Pope never heard, that Euripides obtain'd
the name of Micovúins, woman.hater, because he so virulently saty-
giz'd the sex in his tragedies?

1

it live in your memory, begin at this line, let me fee,
let me fee-The rugged Pyrrhus, like th' Hyrcanian
beaft,- It is not so ;-it begins with Pyrrhus.
The rugged Pyrrhu!, he, whole fable arms,
Black as his purpose, did the night resemble
When he lay couched in the ominous horfe ;
Hath now his dread and black complexion smear'd
With heraldry more dismal; head to foot,
Now is he total gules; horridly trickt
With blood of fathers, mothers, daughters, fons,
Bak'd and impasted with the parching fires,
That lend a tyrannous and damned light
To murders vile. Roasted in wrath and fire,
And thus o'er-sized with coagulate gore,
With eyes like carbuncles, the hellish Pyrrhus
Old grandfire Prian seeks.

Pol. 'Fore God, my Lord, well spoken, with good accent, and good discretion.

i Play. Anon he finds him,
Striking, too short, at Greeks. His antique sword,
Rebellious to his arm, lies where it falls,
Repugnant to command ; unequal match'd,
Pyrrhus at Priam drives, in rage strikes wide
But with the whif and wind of his fell fword
Th' unnerved father falls. Then fenfeless Ilium,
Seeming to feel this blow, with flaming top
Stoops to his base; and with a hideous crash
Takes prisoner Pyrrhus' ear. For lo, his sword,
Which was declining on the milky head
Of rev’rend Priam, feem'd i'th' air to stick :
So, as a painted tyrant, Pyrrhus stood'; }
And, like a neutral to his will and matter,
Did nothing,
But as we often see, against some storm,
A silence in the heav'ns, the rack stand still,
The bold winds speechless, and the orb below
As hush as death: anon the dreadful thunder
Doth rend the region; So after fyrrias' pause,
A roused vengeance fets him new a-work:
And never did the Cyclops' hammers fall

On

[ocr errors]

On Mars his armour, forg'd for proof eterne,
With less remorse than Pyrrhus' bleeding sword
Now falls on Priam.-
Out, out, thou strumpet fortune! all you Gods,
In general fynod take away her power:
Break all the spokes and fellies from her wheel,
And bowl the round naye down the hill of heav'ng,
As low as to the fiends.

Pol. This is too long.

Ham, It shall to th’ barber's with your beard.. Pr'ye thee, say on; he's for a jigg, or a tale of bawdry, or he sleeps.

Say on, come to Hecubr. [Queen, 1 Play. But who, oh! who, had seen the mobled Ham. The mobled Queen? Pol. That's good; mobled Queen, is good. i Play. Run bare-foot up and down, threatning the

flames With biffon rheum; a clout upon that head, Where late the diadem stood ; and for a robe. About her lank and all-o’er-teemed loins, A blanket in th' alarm of fear caught up :. Who this had seen, with tongue in venom steep'd, 'Gainst fortune's state would treason have pronounc'ds: But if the Gods themselves did see her then, When the saw Pyrrhus make malicious sport In mincing with his sword her husband's limbs;. The instant burst of clamour that she made, (Unless things mortal move them not at all). Would have made milch the burning eyes of heav'n, And passion in the Gods.

Pct. Look, whe're he has not turn'd his colour, and has tears in's eyes. Prythee, no more.

Ham. 'Tis well. I'll have thee speak out the rest of this soon. Good my Lord, will you see the players well bestow'd? Do ye hear, let them be well us'd; for they are the abstract, and brief chroniclers of the time. After your death, you were better have a bad epitaph, than their ill report while you liv'd.

Pol. My Lord, I will use them according to their. delerta.

Hm..

morrow.

Han. God's bodikins, man, much better. Use every man after his desert, and who shall 'scape whipping? use them after your own honour and dignity. The less they deserve, the more merit is in your bounty. Take them in. Pol. Come, Sirs.

[Exit Polonius. Ham. Follow him, friends : we'll have a play to

Doft thou hear me, old friend, can you play: the murder of Gonzago?

Play. Ay, my Lord,

Ham. We'll ha't to-morrow-night. You could, for a need, study, a speech of some dozen. or fixteen lines, which I would set down, and insert in't? could ye not?

Play. Ay, my Lord.

Ham. Very well.. Follow thạt Lord, and, look, you, mock him not.. My good friends, I'll leave you 'till, night, you are welcome to E'finoor,. Rof. Good my Lord,

[Exeunte Manet Hamlet Ham. Ay, so; God: b'w'ye : now I am alone.. Oh, what a rogue and peasant Naye am I.! Is it not-monstrous that this player herez, But in a fiction, in a dream of passion, Could force his foul fo to his own conceit, That, from her working, all his visage warm’d:: Tears in his eyes, distraction in his aspect, A broken voice, and his whole function suitings. With forms, to his conceit? and all for nothing For. Hecuba? What's Hecuba to him, or he to Hecuba, That he should weep for her? what would he do, Had he-the motive and the cue for paffion, That I have? he would drown the stage with tearsa, And cleave the gen’ral ear with horrid speech, Make mad the guilty, and appall the free ;; Çonfound the ignorant; and amaze, indeed, The very faculty of eyes and ears. Yet I, A dull and muddy-mettled rascal, peak, Like John-a-dreams, unpregnant of my causes.

And

[ocr errors]

And can say nothing:no, not for a King,
Upon whose

property

and most dear life
A damn'd defeat was made. Am I a coward ?
Who calls me villain, breaks my pate a-cross,
Plucks off my beard, and blows it in my

face?
Tweaks me by th’nose, gives me the lye i'th' throat,
As deep as to the lungs? who does me this?
Yet I should take it --for it cannot be,
But I am pigeon-liver'd, and lack gall
To make oppreffion bitter ; or, ere this, .
I should have fatted all the region kites
With this slave's offal. Bloody, bawdy villain !
Remorseless, treacherous, letcherous, kindless villain!
Why, what an ass am I? this is most brave,
That I, the son of a dear father murder'd,
Frompted to my revenge by heav'n and hell,
Muft, like a whore, unpack my heart with words,
And fall a cursing like a very drab-(32)
A cullion, -fy upon't! foh!-about, my brain !
I've heard, that guilty creatures, at a play,
Have by the very cunning of the scene
Been struck so to the foul, that presently
They have proclaim'd their malefactions.
For murder, though it have no tongue, will speak
With most miraculous organ. l'il have these players
Play fomething like the murder of my father,
Refore mine uncle. I'll observe his looks
I'll tent him to the quick; if he but blench,

(32) And fall a curfing like a very drab--A stallion. -] But why a stallion? The two old folio's have it, a Joullior : but that too is wrong. I am persuaded, Shakespeare wrote as I have r« form’d the text, a cullion, i. e, a stupid, hearikefs, fainthearted, white-liver'd fellow; one good for nothing, but cursing and talking big. So, in King Lear;

Dil make a sop o'th' moonshine of you; you whorson, cullionly,

barbermonger, draw. 2 Henry VI.

Away, base cullions ! -Suffolk, let 'em go. The word is of Italian extraction, from coglione; which, in its metaphorical signification, (as La Crusia defines it) dicesi arcor cogli. one per ingiuria in senso di balordo, Lis faid by way of rcproach to a stupid, cod for nothing blockhead,

[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »