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years allotted to each period. See Brown's Vulger Errors, folio, 1686, p. 173.

MALONE. I have seen, more than once, an old print entitled The Stage of Man's Life, divided into seven ages. As emblematical representations of this sort were formerly stuck up, both for ornament and instruction, in the generality of houses, it is more probable that Shakspere took his hint from thence, than from either Hippocrates or Proclus.—The sense in which the word labours is used, occurs in a passage of the Psalms.


-a soldier; Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,] Só, in Cynthia's Revels, by Ben Jonson,

Your soldier's face—the grace of this face consisteth much in a beard."

STEEVENS. 510. Full of wise saws and modern instances,] It is remarkable that Shakspere uses modern in the double sense that the Greeks used naive, both for recens and absurdus.

WARBURTON. I am in doubt whether modern is in this place used for absurd: the meaning seems to be, that the justice is full of old sayings and late examples to confirm them.

JUHNSON. Modern means trite, common.

STEEVENS. See Modern, in catch-word Alphabet, which points out the different places in which it occurs. 511.

The sixth age shifts Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon ;] There is a greater beauty than appears at first sight


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in this image. He is here comparing human life to a stage play, of seven acts (which is no unusual division before our author's time.) The sixth he calls the lean and slipper'd pantaloon, alluding to that general character in the Italian comedy, called Il Pantalóne ; who is a thin emaciated old man in slippers.; and well designed, in that epithet, because Pantalone is the only character that acts in slippers. WARBURTON.

521. -Set down your venerable burden,] Is it not likely that Shakspere had in his mind this line of the Y Metamorphoses?

Fert humeris, venerabile onus Cythereius heros."

JOHNSON. 530. Thou art not so unkind, &c.] That is, thy action is not so contrary to thy kind, or to human Dature, as the ingratitude of man, So, in qur author's Venus and Adonis, 1593.:

“ O had thy mother borne so bad a mind,
“ She had not brought forth thee, but dy'd unkind!"

MALONE. 532. Thy tooth is not so keen,

Because thou art not seen, ] Thou winter wind, says the Duke, thy rudeness gives the less pain, as thou art not seen, as thou art an enemy that dost not brave us with thy prescace, and whose unkindness is therefore not aggravated by insalt. JOHNSON.

Amiens (not the Duke) is here contrasting the effects of natural evil with moral; the sufferings to which we are exposed from the elements of nature,

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with those which we feel from our intercourse with men. The former he determines to be the more tole. rable, as proceeding from an agent that is invisible, and though rude in his approach, yet personally unknown; whilst the latter results from the slight of our intimates, whom we lately and fondly cherished. Thus Lear, act iii. line 192.

Thou think'st 'tis much, that this contentious storm
Invades us to the skin: so 'tis to thee;
But where the greater malady is fix'd,
The lesser is scarce felt

-When the mind's free,
The body's delicate: the tempest in my

Doth from my senses take all feeling else,
Save what beats there-Ingratitude !
Is it not as this mouth should tear this hand,
For lifting food to't?

HENLEY, Because thou art not seen,] So, in the Sonnet intro. duced into Love's Labour Lost:

“ Through the velvet leaves the wind
“ All unseen 'gan passage find.

STEEVENS. 542. Though thou the waters warp,] The surface of waters, so long as they remain unfrozen, is apparently a perfect plane; whereas, when they are, this sur. face deviates from its exact fatness, or warps. This is remarkable in small ponds, the surface of which when frozen, forms a regular concave; the ice on the sides rising higher than that in the middle. Kenrick.

The meaning is this: though the very waters, by thy agency, are forced against the law of their nature,


to bend from their stated level, yet thy sting occasions less anguish to man, than the ingratitude of those he had befriended.

HENLEY. See Warp, before, in catch-word Alphahet, which comparisons serve to explain.

544. As friend remember'd not.] Remember'd for remembering. So, afterwards, act iii. 1. last : “ And now I am remember'd

i, e. and now that I bethink me, &c.


Act III.

Line 16.


let my officers of such a nature Make an extent upon his house and lands:] “ To make an extent of lands,” is a legal phrase, from the words of a writ (extendi facias) whereby the sheriff is directed to cause certain lands to be appraised to their full extended value, before he delivers them to the person entitled under a recognizance, &c. in order that it may be certainly known how soon the debt will be paid.

MALONE. 18. Expediently,] That is, expeditiously.

JOHNSON. Thrice-crowned queen of night,] Alluding to the triple character of Proserpine, Cynthia, and Diana, given by some mythologists to the same goddess, and comprised in these memorable lines;


« Terreta

Terret, lustrat, agit, Proserpina, Luna, Diana, Ima, superna, feras, sceptro, fulgore, sagittis.

JOHNSON, 28. Unexpressive] for inexpressible. JOHNSON. Milton in like manner uses unexpressive for inexpressible :

Harping with loud and solemn quire, "With unexpressive notes to heaven's new-bornheir."

Hymn on the Nativity. MALONE. 47. He that hath learned no wit by nature or art, may complain of good breeding, or comes of very dull kindred.] Common sense requires us to read:

May complain of gross breeding. The Oxford editor has greatly improved this emendation by reading-bad breeding, WARBURTON.

I am in doubt whether the custom of the language in Shakspere's time did not authorise this mode of speech, and make complain of good breeding, the same with complain of the want of good breeding. In the last line of The Merchant of Venice, we find that to fear the keeping is to fear the not keeping,

JOHNSON I think, he means rather--may complain of a good education, for having been so inefficient of so little use to him.

MALONE. The context makes it probable, that the poet had the proverb in his mind, of being“ better fed than taught."

50. Such a one is a natural philosopher.] The shepherd had said all the philosophy he knew was the property of things, that rain wetted, fire burnt, &c. And the Clown's reply, in a satire on physicks or


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