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có This man, with lime and rough-cast, doth present 16 Wall, that vile wall which did thefc lovers fun

der : 66 And through wall's chink, poor souls, they are


66 To whisper ; at the which let no man wonder. 66 This man, with lantern, dog, and bush of thorn, 66 Presenteth moon-fhine : for, if


will know, 66 By moon-shine did these lovers think no scorn

66 To meet at Ninus' tomb, there, there to woo, 16 This grilly beast, which by name lion hight,' 6. The trusty Thisby, coming first by night, 66 Did fcare away, or rather did affright:

intended on the frequent recurrence of " certain" as a bungling rhime in poetry more ancient than the age of Shakspeare.

Tbus in a short poem entitled " A lyiell treatise called the dysputacyon or the complazute of the herte through perced with the lokynge of the eye. Inprented at London in Fletejirete at je Sygne of the Sonne by Wabyn de vorde."

- And houndes fyxe{core and mo certayne -
" To whome my thought gan to strayne certaync
" Whan i had fyrst fyglit of her certayne
so In all honoure she hath no pere certayne
" To loke upon a fayre Lady centagne
56 As' moch as is in me I ani contenie certayne -
". They made there both two theyr promysse certayne
66 All armed with margaretes certayne -
- Towards Venus when they fholde go certayne-

STEEVENS. . To meet at Ninus' tomb, &c.] So, in Chaucer's Legend of Thijbe of Babylon :

" Thei seitin markes ther metingis should be,

• There king Ninus was graven undir a tre.' Again :

" And as she ran her wimple she let fall," &c. Again, Golding in his version of Ovid's Metamorphosis, B. IV. has a fimilar line : " And as she fler away for bafte, she let her mantle fall."

STEEVENS. which by name Lion hight, ] As all the other parts of this speech are in aliernate rhyme, excepting that it closes with a colla


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66 And, as she fled, her mantle she did fall;"

66. Which lion vile with bloody mouth did stain : 16 Anon comes Pyramus, sweet youth, and tall,

66 And finds his trusty Thisby's mantle flain : 56 Whereat,with blade, with bloody blameful blade, si

66 He bravely broach'd his boiling bloody breast; 66 And, Thilby tarrying in mulberry shade,

66 His dagger drew, and died. For all the rest,


plet; and as no rhime is left to name, we must conclude, either a verse is Dipt out, which cannot now be retriev'd; or, by a trans. position of the words, as I have placed them, the poet intended a triplet. THEOBALD.

Hight, in old English fignifies is called. -I think it more probable that a linc, following the words-- by night, has been lost.

MALONE. her mantle she did fall; ] Thus all the old copies. The modern editions read she let fall," unnecessarily. To fall in this instance is a verb adive. So, in The Tempeft, Ad II. sc. i:

• And when I rear my hand, do you the like,

" To fall it on Gonzalo." STEEVENS. ş Whereat, with blade, with bloody blameful blade, ] Mr. Upton rightly observes, that Shakspeare in this line ridicules the afledation of beginning many words with the same letter.

He might have remarked the same of

6. The raging rocks

66 And shivering shocks." Gascoigne, contemporary with our poet, remarks and blames the same affe&ation. JOHNSON. It is also ridiculed by Sidney in his Astrophel and Siella. 15:

“ You that do Di&ionaries' method bring

" Into your rimes, running in rattling rowes." But this alliteration secms to have reached the height of its fashion in the reign of Henry VIII. Thc following ftanza is quoted from a poem on the Fall and evil Success of Rebelliou, written in 1537, by Wilfride Holme.

6. Loe, leprous lurdeins, lubricke in loquacitic,
" Vah, vaporous villeins, with venim vulnerare,
5. Prob, prating parenticides, plexious to pinnositie,

" Let lion, 'moon-fhine, wall, and lovers twain, " At large discourse, while here they do remain."

[Exeunt Prol. Thisbe, Lion, and Moonshine. THE. I wonder, if the lion be to speak. DEM. No wonder, my lord: one lion may,


many affes do.

WALL." In this fame interlude, it doth befall, “ That I, one Snout by name, present a wall.: "' And such a wall, as I would have you think, " That had in it a cranny'd hole, or chink,

Through which the lovers, Pyramus and Thisby, “ Did whisper often very secretly. “ This loam, this rough-cast, and this stone, doth

show " That I am that same wall; the truth is fo: \" And this the cranny is,' right and finifter,

Through which the fearfullovers are to whisper."

“ Fie, franticke fabulators, furibund, and fatuate,
" Out, oblatrant, oblic, obstacle, and obsecate.
" Ah addid algoes, in acerbitie acclamant,

Magnall in mischief, inalicious to mugilate,

Repriving your Roy so renowned and radiant." In Tuffer's Husbandry, p. 104, there is a poem of which every word begins with a T; and in the old play entitled, The Historie af the Two valiant Knights, Syr Clomon Knight of the Golden Sheeld, Sonne to the King of Denmark; and Clamydes the White Knight, son to the King of Suavia, 1599, is anotier remarkable instance of alliteration :

Bringing my bark to Denmark here, to bide the bitter broyle

56 And beating blowes of billows high,' &c. STEEVENS. s And this the cranny is,] So, in Golding's Ovid, 1567: • The wall chat paried house from house had riuen therein a

стапу 4. Which shronke at making of the wall. This fault not markt

of any

" Of many hundred yeares before (what doth not louc espie)
16 These louers first of all found out, and made a way thereby
$" To talk to gither secretly, and through the same did goc
”! Their louing whisperings veric light and safely to and fro.'


The. Would you desire lime and hair to speak

better? Dem. It is the wittiest partition that ever I heard discourse, my lord. 6

THE. Pyramus draws near the wall: filence !


PYR." () grim-look'd night! O night with hue

fo black! O night, which ever art, when day is not! O night, О night, alack, alack, alack,

“ I fear my Thisby's promise is forgot! * And thou, () wall, O sweet, O lovely wall, " stand'st between her father's ground and

mine; 45 Tou wall, O wall, O sweet and lovely wall, “ Show me thy chink,'to blink through with mine eyne.

[Wall holds up his fingers. " Thanks, courteous wall: Jove shield thee well

for this! “ But what fee I? No Thisby do I see. " O wicked wall,? through whom I see no bliss;

" Curst be thy stones for thus deceiving me!

THE. The wall, methinks, being sensible, should curse again.

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6 It is the wittiest partition that ever I heard discourse, my lord. ) Demetrius is represented as a punfter: I believe the passage should be read: This is the wittiest partition, thai ever I heard in discourse. Alluding to the many stupid partitions in the argumentative writings of the time. Shakspeare himself, as well as his contemporaries, uses discourse for reasoning: and he here avails himself of the double sense ; as he had done before in the word, partition. FARMER. 7 0 wicked wall, &c. 1 So, in Chaucer's Legend of Thisbe: "! Thus would thei saine, alas! thou wicked wal," &c.


Pyr. No, in truth, sir, he should not. Deceiving me, is Thisby's cue; she is to enter now, and I am to spy her through the wall. You shall fee, it will fall pat as I told you :-Yonder she comes,




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This. “ ( wall, full often halt thou heard my

moans, " For parting my fair Pyramus and me: My cherry lips have often kiss'd thy stones;

Thy stones with line and hair knit up in thee.” Pyr." I see a voice : now will I to the chink, " To spy an I can hear my Thisby's face. Thisby!”

This. " My love ! thou art my love, I think.” PYR." Think what thou wilt, I am thy lover's

5o And like Limander am I trusty still.”?

THIS.“ And I like Helen, till the fates me kill."
Pyr. ". Not Shafalus to Procrus was so true.”
This. “ As Shafalus to Procrus, I to you.
PYR. “ O, kiss me through the hole of this vile

This. “ I kiss the wall's hole, not your lips at


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knit up in thee. ]. Thus the folio. The quartos read knit now again. STEEVENS.

? And like Limander, &c.] Limander and Helen, are spoken by the blundering player, for Leander and Hero. Shafalus and Procrus, for Cephalus and Procris. JOHNSON.

3 1 kiss the wall's hole, not your lips at all.] So Golding's Ovid: " When night drew nere, they bade adew, and eche gave kiffes

fwcele "! Unto the parget on their fide, :he which did never meete."


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