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BARD. What, are ancient Pistol and you friends yet?
Nym. For my part, I care not: I say little; but when time shall serve, there shall be smiles; 3 -- but that shall be as it may. I dare not fight; but I will wink, and hold out mine iron: It is a simple one; but what though? it will toast cheese ; and it will endure cold as another man's sword will: and there's the humour of it.*
BARD. I will bestow a breakfast, to make you
now alive, he would perhaps find it as difficult to give the desired information as Mr. Steevens. The intelligent reader must long fince have observed that our author not only neglected to compare his plays with each other, but that, even in the same play, “ the latter end of his commonwealth sometimes forgets the beginning."
MALONE. 3 - there Mall be smiles;] I suspect smiles to be a marginal direction crept into the text. It is natural for a man, when he threatens, to break off abruptly, and conclude, But that shall be as it may. But this fantastical fellow is made to smile disdainfully while he threatens; which circumstance was marked for the player's direction in the margin. WARBURTON.
I do not remember to have met with these marginal directions for expression of countenance in any of our ancient manuscript plays : neither do I see occasion for Dr. Warburton's emendation, as it is vain to seek the precise meaning of every whimsical phrase employed by this eccentric character. Nym, however, having expressed his indifference about the continuation of Piftol's friendihip, might have added, when time ferves, there all be smiles, i. e. he should be merry, even though he was to lose it; or, that his face would be ready with a smile as often as occasion Mould call one out into service, though Pistol, who had excited so many, was no longer near him. Dr. Farmer, however, with great probability, would read,--smites, i. e. blows, a word used in the midland counties. Steevens.
Perhaps Nym means only to say, I care not whether we are friends at present; however, when time shall serve, we shall be in good humour with each other: but be it as it may. MALONE.
4- the humour of it.] Thus the quarto. The folio reads, and there's an end. STEEVENS.
friends; and we'll be all three sworn brothers to France :4 let it be so, good corporal Nym.
Nrn. Faith, I will live so long as I may, that's the certain of it; and when I cannot live any longer, I will do as I may:s that is my rest, that is the rendezvous of it.
Bard. It is certain, corporal, that he is married to Nell Quickly: and, certainly, she did you wrong; for you were troth-plight to her.
Nrm. I cannot tell; things must be as they may: men may sleep, and they may have their throats about them at that time; and, some say, knives have edges. It must be as it may : though patience be a tired mare, yet she will plod. There must be conclusions. Well, I cannot tell.
4 and we'll be all three frworn brothers to France :] We should read,-we'll all go sworn brothers to France, or, we'll all be I worn brothers in France. Johnson.
The humour of sworn brothers should be opened a little. In the times of adventure, it was usual for two chiefs to bind themselves to share in each other's fortune, and divide their acquisitions between them. So, in the Conqueror's expedition, Robert de Oily, and Roger de Ivery, were fratres jurati; and Robert gave one of the honours he received to his sworn brother Roger. So these three scoundrels set out for France, as if they were going to make a conquest of the kingdom. WHALLEY.
s and when I cannot live any longer, I will do as I may :] Surely we ought to read, “ I will die as I may.” M. Mason.
6- that is my rest,] i. e. what I am resolved on. For a par. ticular account of this phrase, see notes on Romeo and Juliet, AG IV. sc. v. and Act V. sc. iii. [Vol. XIV.] Steevens.
1- patience be a tired mare.] The folio reads, by corruption, tired name, from which Sir T. Hanmer, sagaciously enough, derived tired dame. Mt. Theobald retrieved from the quarto tired marr, the true reading. JOHNSON.
So, in Pierce's Supererogation, or á New Praise of the Old Alle, &c. “ Silence is a slave in a chaine, and patience the common packhorse of the world," STEVENS,
Enter Pistol and Mrs. QUICKLY.
BARD. Here comes ancient Pistol, and his wife:good corporal, be patient here.-How now, mine host Pistol ?
Pist. Base tike,& call'st thou me-host? Now, by this hand I swear, I scorn the term ; Nor shall my Nell keep lodgers.
Quick. No, by my troth, not long : for we cannot lodge and board a dozen or fourteen gentlewomen, that live honestly by the prick of their needles, but it will be thought we keep a bawdyhouse straight. [Nym draws bis sword.] O well-aday, Lady, if he be not drawn now !! O Lord! here's
8 Base tike,] Tijk, is the Runic word for a little, or worthless dog. So, in King Lear:
« Or bobtail tike, or trundle-tail." This word is still employed in Yorkshire, and means a clown, or rustic. So, in Henry Carey's ballad opera, entitled, The Wonder, an Honest Yorkshireman, 1736:
" If you can like
“ A Yorkshire tike,” &c. Steevens. In Minsheu's Dictionary, 1617, tike is defined, “ a worme that sucks the blood.” It is now commonly spelt tick, an animal that infeits sheep, dogs, &c. This may have been Pistol's term. Our author has the word in the sense Mr. Steevens has assigned to it, in King Lear; and it occurs with the other signification in Troilus and Cressida. Piftol's next speech, however, supports the former explanation. MALONE.
90 well-a-day, Lady, if he be not drawn now!] The folio bewn. If he be not hewn must signify, if he be not cut down; and in that case the very thing is suppofed which Quickly was apprehensive of. But I rather think her fright arises upon seeing the swords drawn, and I have ventured to make a slight alteration accordingly. If he be not drawn, for, if he has not his sword drawn, is an expression familiar to our poet. TheoBALD.
The quarto omits this obscure passage, and only gives us,–0 Lord! here's corporal Nym's - But as it cannot be ascertained
corporal Nym's-now shall we have wilful adultery and murder committed. Good lieutenant Bardolph,}-good corporal, offer nothing here.
which words (or whether any) were designedly excluded, I have left both exclamations in the text. Mrs. Quickly, without deviation from her character, may be supposed to utter repeated outcries on the same alarm. And yet I think we might ready--if he be not hewing. To hack and hew is a common vulgar expression. So, in If you know not me you know Nobody, by Heywood, 1606: "_ Bones o’me, he would hew it.” Again, in X, Edward III, 1599:
“ The fin is more to hack and hew poor men.” After all (as the late Mr. Guthrie observed) to be hewn might mean, to be drunk. There is yet a low phrase in use on the same occasion, which is not much unlike it; viz. “ he is cui."“ Such a one was cut a little last night." So, in The Witty Fair One, by Shirley, 1633:
" Then, fír, there is the cut of your leg.
" that's when a man is drunk, is it not? “ Do not stagger in your judgment, for this cut is the grace of your body."
Again, in The London Chaunticleres, 1659: “ - when the cups of canary have made our heads frisk; oh how we shall foot it when we can scarce stand, and caper when we are cut in the leg!" Again, in Decker's Guls Hornbook, 1609: “— to accept the courtesy of the cellar when it is offered you by the drawers (and you must know that kindness never creepes upon them but when they see you almost cleft to the shoulders),” &c. Steevens.
I have followed the quarto, because it requires no emendation. Here's corporal Nym's sword drawn, the hostess would say, but The breaks off abruptly.
The editor of the folio here, as in many other places, not understanding an abrupt passage, I believe, made out something that he conceived might have been intended. Instead of “ O Lord,” to avoid the penalty of the statute, he inserted, “O well a-day, lady,' and added,-“ if he be not hewn now." The latter word is evidently corrupt, and was probably printed, as Mr. Steevens conjectures, for hewing. But, for the reason already given, I have adhered to the quarto. Malone.
How would the editor of the folio have escaped profaneness by fubftituting Lady for Lord? for Lady is an exclamation on our blessed Lady, the Virgin Mary. STEEVENS.
Pist. Pish for thee, Iceland dog!4 thou prickear'd curs of Iceland !
3 Good lieutenant &c.] This sentence (except the word Bardolph) is in the folio given to Bardolph, to whom it is evident these words cannot belong, for he is himself, in this play, the lieutenant. Mr. Steevens proposes to solve the difficulty by reading--good ancient, supposing Pistol to be the person addressed. But it is clear, I think, from the quarto, that these words belong to the speech of the hostess, who, seeing Nym's sword drawn, conjures him and his friend Bardolph to use no violence. In the quarto, the words, “ Good corporal Nym, show the valour of a man,” are immediately subjoined to—" now shall we have wilful adultery and murder committed.” Bardolph was probably an interlineation, and erroneously inserted before the words “ good lieu. tenant," instead of being placed, as it now is, after them. Hence, he was considered as the speaker, instead of the person addressed.
MALONE. 4 - Iceland dog!] In the folio the word is spelt Isand; in the quarto, Iseland. MALONE.
I believe we should read, Iceland dog. He seems to allude to an account credited in Elizabeth's time, that in the north there was a nation with human bodies and dogs' heads. Johnson.
The quartos confirm Dr. Johnson's conjecture. SteeVENS.
Iceland dog is probably the true reading; yet in Hakluyt's Voyages, we often meet with island. Drayton, in his Moon-calf, mentions water-dogs, and ifands. And John Taylor dedicates his Sculler « To the whole kennel of Antichrist's hounds, priests, friars, monks, and jesuites, mastiffs, mongrels, islands, blood-hounds, bobtaile-tikes.” FARMER.
Perhaps this kind of dog was then in vogue for the ladies to carry about with them. So, in Ram-Alley, or Merry-tricks, 1611:
" you shall have jewels,
" A baboon, a parrot, and an Izeland dog." Again, in Two Wise Men, and all the rest Fools, 1619:
“ Enter Levitia, cum Pedisequa, her periwig of dog's hair white, &c.
" Infa. A woman? 'tis not a woman. The head is a dog ; 'tis a mermaid, half dog, half woman.