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However they have writ the style of gods,
Ant. Y et bend not all the harm upon yourself;
Leon. There thou speak’st reason: nay, I will
My soul doth tell me, Hero is belied,
Enter Don Pedro and CLAUDIO.
Good day to both of you.
Who wrongs him?
Claud. Marry, beshrew my hand,
Leon. Tush, tush, man, never fleer and jest at me:
4 Push is the reading of the old copy, which Pope altered to pish without any seeming necessity. To make a push at any thing is to contend against it or defy it.
What I have done being young, or what would do,
Claud. My villany!
Thine, Claudio; thine I say.
My lord, my lord, I'll prove it on his body, if he dare; Despite his nice fence, and his active practice”, His May of youth, and bloom of lustyhood.
Claud. Away, I will not have to do with you. Leon. Canst thou so daff6 me? Thou hast killd
my child; If thou killst me, boy, thou shalt kill a man.
Ant. He shall kill two of us, and men indeed : But that's no matter; let him kill one first;Win me and wear me,
,- let him answer me,
5 Skill in fencing.
-Come, sir boy, come follow me. 8 Thrusting
And she is dead, slander'd to death by villains;
Leon. But, brother Antony,-
Come, 'tis no matter; Do not you meddle, let me deal in this.
D. Pedro. Gentlemen both, we will not wake 11
My heart is sorry for your daughter's death;
Leon. My lord, my lord, -
I will not hear
No? Come, brother, away :- I will be heard ;Ant.
And shall, Or of will smart for it.
[Exeunt LEONATO and ANTONIO. Scambling appears to have been much the same as scrambling; shifting or shuffling. • Griffe graffe,' says Cotgrave, ‘by hook or by crook, squimble squamble, scamblingly, catch that catch may. We have skimble skamble stuff" in K. Henry IV. Part 1. 10 i. e. what in King Henry V. Act iii. Sc. 6, is called
- a horrid suit of the camp.' 11 i. e. rouse, stir up, convert your patience into anger, by remaining longer in your presence.
Enter BENEDICK. D. Pedro. See, see; here comes the man we went to seek.
Claud. Now, signior! what news ?
D. Pedro. Welcome, signior: You are almost come to part almost a fray.
Claud. We had like to have had our two noses snapped off with two old men without teeth.
D. Pedro. Leonato and his brother: What think'st thou ? Had we fought, I doubt, we should have been too young for them.
Bene. In a false quarrel there is no true valour. I came to seek
both. Claud. We have been up and down to seek thee; for we are high-proof melancholy, and would fain have it beaten away: Wilt thou use thy wit?
Bene. It is in my scabbard; Shall I draw it? D. Pedro. Dost thou wear thy wit by thy side ? Claud. Never
did so, though very many have been beside their wit.--I will bid thee draw, as we do the minstrels; draw, to pleasure us 12.
D. Pedro. As I am an honest man, he looks pale: -Art thou sick, or angry?
Claud. What! courage, man! Whạt though care killed a cat, thou hast mettle enough in thee to kill care.
Bene. Sir, I shall meet your wit in the career, an you charge it against me:- I pray you, choose another subject.
Claud. Nay, then give him another staff; this last was broke cross
D. Pedro. By this light, he changes more and more; I think, he be
indeed. 12 ‘I will bid thee draw thy sword, as we bid the minstrels draw the bows of their fiddles, merely to please us.'
13 The allusion is to tilting. See note, As You Like It, Act jii. Sc. 4.
Claud. If he be, he knows how to turn his girdle 14.
Bene. You are a villain ;-Ijest not :- I will make it good how you dare, with what you dare, and when you
dare: Do me right, or I will protest your cowardice. You have killed a sweet lady, and her death shall fall heavy on you: Let me hear from you.
Claud. Well, I will meet you, so I may have good cheer.
D. Pedro. What, a feast? a feast?.
Claud. I'faith, I thank him; he hath bid to a calf's head and a capon; the which if I do not carve most curiously, say, my knife’s naught.Shall I not find a woodcock 16 too.
Bene. Sir, your wit ambles well; it goes easily.
D. Pedro. I'll tell thee how Beatrice praised thy wit the other day: I said thou hadst a fine wit: True, says she, a fine little one: No, said I, a great wit; Right, says she, a great gross one : Nay, said I, a good wit; Just ; said she, it hurts nobody : Nay, said I, the gentleman is wise; Certain, said she, a wise gentleman 17: Nay, said I, he hath the tongues;
14. There is a proverbial phrase, ' If he be angry let him turn the buckle of his girdle.' Mr. Holt White says, ' Large belts were worn with the buckle before, but for wrestling the buckle was turned behind, to give the adversary a fairer grasp at the girdle. To turn the buckle behind was therefore a challenge.'
16 A woodcock, being supposed to have no brains, was a common phrase for a foolish fellow. It means here one caught in a springe or trap, alluding to the plot against Benedick. So, in Hamlet, Sc. ult.
• Why, as a woodcock to my own springe, Osrick.' Sir Wm. Cecil in a letter to Secretary Maitland (penes me ) says: • I went to lay some lime twiggs for certen woodcoks which I have taken.' He alludes to an attempted escape of the French hostages.
17 Wise gentleman was probably used ironically for a silly fellow; as we still say a wise-acre.