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Hero. Why, then your visor should be thatch'd.
Pedro. Speak low, if you speak love.?
Bene. Well, I would you did like me.

Marg. So would not I for your own fake; for I have many ill qualities.

Bene. Which is one?
Marg. I say my prayers aloud.

Bene. I love you the better; the hearers may cry Amen.'

Marg. God match me with a good dancer!
Balıb. Amen.

Marg. And God keep him out of my light when the dance is done! Answer, clerk.

Balıb. No more words; the clerk is answer'd.

Urf. I know you well enough ; you are signior Antonio.

Jaq. O knowledge ill inhabited, worse ihan Jove in a thatch'd Boule! THEOBALD.

This emendation, thus impressed with all the power of his elo. quence and reason, Theobald found in the quarto edition of 1600, which he professes to have seen; and in the first folio, the / and the I are so much alike, that the printers, perhaps, used the same type for either letter. JOHNSON.

? Pedro. Speak low, &c,] This speech, which is given to Pedro, should be given to Margaret. REVISAL.

8 Balth. Well, I would, you did like me.) This and the two fol. lowing little speeches, which I have placed to Balthazar, are in all the printed copies given to Benedick. But, 'tis clear, the dialogue here ought to be betwixt Balthazar and Margaret: Benė. dick, a little lower, converses with Beatrice ; and so every man talks with his woman once round. T'HEOBALD.

9 Amen. 11 do not heartily concur with Theobald in his arbitra. sy disposition of these speeches. Balthazar is called in the old copies dumb. John, as I have already observed, and therefore it . Should feem, that he was meant to speak but little. When Bc.

nedick says, the bearers may cry, Amen, we must suppose that he Taaves Margaret and goes in search of some other {port. Marga. Tet utters a wish for a good partner ; Balthazar, who is represented a man of the fewelt words, repeats Benedick's Amin, and leads her off, denring, as he says in the following short speech, to pat infeli to no greater expence of breath, STEEVENS.


Ant. At a word, I am not.
Urf. I know you by the wagling of your head.
Ant. To tell you true, I counterfeit him.

Urs. You could never do him so ill-well, unless you were the very man: Here's his dry hand up and down; you are he, you are he.

Ant. At a word, I am not.

Urs. Come, come ; do you think, I do not know you by your excellent wit? Can virtue hide itself? Go to, mum, you are he: graces will appear, and there's an end. Beat. Will you not tell me, who told


Bene. No, you shall pardon me.
Beat. Nor will you not tell me who you are į
Bene. Not now.

Beat. That I was disdainful, and that I had my good wit out of the Hundred merry Tales ; s well, this was signior Benedick that said fo.

Bene. What's he?
Beat. I am sure, you know him well enough.
Bene. Not I, believe me.
Beat. Did he never make you laugh?
Bene. I pray you, what is he?

Beat. Why, he is the prince's jester: a very dull fool; only his gift is in devising imposible Nanders:s none but libertines delight in him; and the commen

* Hundred merry Tales;] The book, to which Shakespeare al. Judes, was an old translation of Les cent Nouvelles Nouvelles. The original was published at Paris, in the black letter, before the year 1500"; and is said to have been written by some of the royal family of France. Ames mentions a translation of it prior to the time of Shakespeare. Steevens.

2 his gift in de vising impossible flanders :) We should read impalfable, i.e. Nanders so ill invented, that they will pass upon no body.

WARBURTON. Imposible flanders are, I suppose, such flanders as, from their absurdity and imposibility, bring their own confutation with them.



dation is not in his wit, but in his villainy ; ' for he both pleaseth men, and angers them, and then they laugh at him, and beat him: I am sure, he is in the Aeet, I would he had boarded me.

Bene. When I know the gentleman, I'll tell him what you say.

Brai. Do, do : he'll but break a comparison or two on me, which, peradventure, not mark'd, or not laugh'd at, strikes him into melancholy, and then there's a partridge wing fav’d, for the fool will eat no supper that night. We must follow the leaders.

[Mufick within. Bene. In every good thing.

Beat. Nay, if they lead to any ill, I will leave them at the next turning

[Exeunt. Manent John, Borachio, and Claudio. John. Sure, my brother is amorous on Hero, and hath withdrawn her father to break with him about it: The ladies follow her, and but one visor remains.

Bora. And that is Claudio ; I know him by his bearing.

John. Are you not signior Benedick ?
Claud. You know me well; I am he.

John. Signior, you are very near my brother in his love: he is enamour'd on Hero; I pray you, dissuade him from her, she is no equal for his birth: you may do the part of an honest man in it.

Claud. How know you he loves her?
John. I heard him iwear his affection.

Bora. So did I too ; and he swore he would marry her to-night.

3 bis villainy ;] By which the means his malice and impiety. By his impious jells, she insinuates, he pleased libertines; and by his devising Janders of them, he angered then. WARBURTON.

John, John. Come, let us to the banquet.

[Exeunt John and Bora.
Claud. Thus answer I in name of Benedick,
But hear this ill news with the ears of Claudio.
'Tis certain so ;--the prince wooes for himself.
Friendship is constant in all other things,
Save in the office and affairs of love :
Therefore, all hearts in love use their own tongues;
Let every eye negociate for itself,
And trust no agent: for beauty is a witch,
Against whose charms faith melteth into blood.
This is an accident of hourly proof,
Which I mistrusted not. Farewell, therefore, Hero !

Re-enter Benedick.
Bene. Count Claudio ?'
Claud. Yea, the same,
Bene. Come, will you go with me?
Claud. Whither ?

Bene. Even to the next willow, about your own business, count. 'What fashion will you wear the garland of? about your neck, like an ulurer's chain ? + or under your arm, like a lieutenant's scarf? You must wear it one way, for the prince hath got your Hero.

Claud. I wish him joy of her.

Bene. Why, that's spoken like an honest drover; so they sell bullocks. But did you think, the prince would have serv'd you thus ?

+ usurer's chain?] I know not whether the chain was, in our authour's time, the common ornament of wealthy citizens, or whether he satirically uses usurer and alderman as synonymous terms.

JOHNSON. Ufury seems about this time to have been a common topic of invective. I have three or four dialogues, pasquils, and discourses on the subject, printed before the year 1600. From every one of these it appears, that the merchants were the chief usurers of the age. Steevens.


Claud. I pray you leave me.

Bene. Ho! now you strike like the blind man; 'twas the boy that stole your meat, and you'll beat the post.

Claud. If it will not be, I'll leave you. [Exit. Bene. Alas, poor hurt fowl! Now will he

creep into fedges.—But, that my lady Beatrice should know me, and not know me! the prince's fool! Ha? it may be, I go under that title, because I am merry.—Yea, but fo I am apt to do myself wrong: I am not so reputed. It is the base, the bitter difposition of Beatrice, that puts the world into her person, and so gives me out. Well, I'll be reveng’d as I may.

Re-enter Don Pedro.

Pedro. Now, signior, where's the count? did you fee him ?

Bene. Troth, my lord, I have play'd the part of *lady Fame. I found him, here as melancholy as a lodge in a warren, I told him, (and I think, I told him true) that your grace had got the will of this

5 It is the ball, tho' birter, difpofition of Beatrice, wo futs ibe world into her person.] That is, It is ihe disposition of B: arrice, wbo takes upon her 10 personate the world, and Iberefore ripresents the world as saying what the only lays berfelf.

Base, ibobitter. I do not understand how base and bitter are inconsistent, or why what is bitter should not be base. I believe, we may safely read, It is the base, the bittes disposition.

JOHNSON. as melancholy as a lodge in a warren,] A parallel thought occurs in the first chapter of Ilaiah, where the prophet, defcribing the desolation of Judah, says, " The daughter of Zion is left as “ a cottage in a vineyard, as a lodge in a garden of cucumbers," &c. I am informed, that near Aleppo, thefe lonely buildings are ftill made use of, it being necessary, that the fields where watermelons, cucumbers, &c. are raised, should be regularly watched.




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