Sivut kuvina

Or by what means got’st thou to be releas'd ?
Discourse, I pr’ythee, on this turret's top.

TAL. The duke of Bedford had a prisoner,
Called the brave lord Ponton de Santrailles ;
For him I was exchang'd and ransomed.
But with a baser man of arms by far,
Once, in contempt, they would have barter'd me:
Which I, disdaining, scorn'd: and craved death
Rather than I would be so pil'd esteem'd.

deservedly numbered among the feeblest performances of Shakspeare, this first of them appears to have been received with the greatest applause. So, in Pierce Penniless's Supplication to the Devil, by Nath, 1592: “ How would it have joyed brave Talbot (the terror of the French,) to thinke that after he had lien two hundred years in his tombe, he should triumph againe on the stage, and have his bones new embalmed with the teares of ten thousand spectators at least (at several times,) who in the tragedian that represents his person, imagine they behold him fresh bleeding ?” Steevens.

6- fo pild esteem'd.] Thus the old copy. Some of the modern editors read, but without authority-lo vile-efter md.-S. pillid, may mean-so pillag'd, so strippid of honours; but I suspect a corruption, which Mr. M. Mason would remedy, by reading either vile or ill-esteemed.

It is polible, however, that Shakspeare might have writtenPhilistin'd; i. e. treated as contumeliously as Sampson was by the Philistines.—Both Sampson and Talbot had been prisoners, and were alike insulted by their captors.

Our author has jocularly formed more than one verb from a proper name; as for instance, from Anfidius, in Coriolanus: “ I would not have been so fidius'd for all the chests in Corioli.” Again, in King Henry V. Pistol say's to his prisoner : “ Master Fer? I'll fer him,” &c. Again, in Hamlet, from Herod, we have the verb « out-herod.

Shakspeare therefore, in the present instance, might have taken a similar liberty.-To fall into the hands of the Philistines has long been a cant phrase, expressive of danger incurred, whether from enemies, association with hard drinkers, gamesters, or a less welcome acquaintance with the harpies of the law.

Talbot's idea would be sufficiently expressed by the term-Phim lifin'd, which (as the play before us appears to have been copied by the ear) was more liable to corruption than a common verb.

In fine, redeem'd I was as I desir'd.
But, O! the treacherous Fastolfe wounds my heart!
Whom with my bare fifts I would execute,
If I now had him brought into my power.
SAL. Yet tell’st thou not, how thou wert enter-

tain'd. TAL. With scoffs, and scorns, and contumelious

In open market-place produc'd they me,
To be a publick spectacle to all;
Here, said they, is the terror of the French,
The scare-crow that affrights our children so."

I may add, that perhaps no word will be found nearer to the sound and traces of the letters, in pil-esteem'd, than Philistin'd.

Philistine, in the age of Shakspeare, was always accented on the first syllable, and therefore is not injurious to the line in which I have hesitatingly proposed to insert it.

I cannot, however, help smiling at my own conjecture; and should it excite the same sensation in the reader who journeys through the barren desert of our accumulated notes on this play, like Addison's traveller, when he discovers a cheerful spring amid the wilds of sand, let him

" bless his stars, and think it luxury.” Steevens. I have no doubt that we should read fo pile-esteem'd: a Latinism, for which the author of this play had, I believe, no occafion to go to Lilly's grammar. “ Flocci, nauci, nihili, pili, &c. his verbis, æftimo, pendo, peculiariter adjiciuntur; ut,—Nec hujus facio, qui me pili æftimat.” Even if we suppose no change to be necessary, this surely was the meaning intended to be conveyed. In one of Shakspeare's plays we have the same phrase, in English,-vile-esteem'd.

MALONE. If the author of the play before us designed to avail himself of the Latin phrase-pili ajtimo, would he have only half translated it? for what correspondence has pile in English to a single hair? Was a single hair ever called--a pile, by any English writer?

STEEVENS. ?_ the terror of the French,

The scare-crow that affrights our children fo.] From Hall's Chronicle: “ This man [Talbot) was to the French people a very fcourge and a daily terror, insomuch that as his person was fearful, and terrible to his adversaries present, so his name and fame was

Then broke I from the officers that led me;
And with my nails digg'd stones out of the ground,
To hurl at the beholders of my shame.
My grisly countenance made others fly;
None durst come near, for fear of sudden death.
In iron walls they deem'd me not secure;
So great fear of my name 'mongst them was spread,
That they suppos’d, I could rend bars of steel,
And spurn in pieces posts of adamant:
Wherefore a guard of chosen shot I had,
That walk'd about me every minute-while;
And if I did but stir out of my bed,
Ready they were to shoot me to the heart.
Sal. I grieve to hear what torments you en-

But we will be reveng'd sufficiently.
Now it is supper-time in Orleans :
Here, through this grate, I can count every one,
And view the Frenchmen how they fortify;
Let us look in, the sight will much delight thee.-
Sir Thomas Gargrave, and sir William Glansdale,
Let me have your express opinions,
Where is best place to make our battery next.
GAR. I think, at the north gate; for there stand

lords. GLAN. And I, here, at the bulwark of the


spiteful and dreadful to the common people absent; insomuch that women in France to feare their yong children, would crye, the Talbot commeth, the Talbot commeth.” The same thing is said of King Richard I. when he was in the Holy Land. See Camden's Remaines, 4to. 1614, p. 267. MALONE.

8 Here, through this grate, I can count every one,] Thus the second folio. The first, very harshly and unmetrically, reads :

Here, thorough this grate, I count each one. STEEVENS.

Tal. For aught I see, this city must be famish'd, Or with light skirmishes enfeebled. 8

Shot from the town. SALISBURY and Sir Tho.

SAL. O Lord, have mercy on us, wretched sin-

ners! GAR. O Lord, have mercy on me, woful man! TAL. What chance is this, that suddenly hath

cross'd us?
Speak, Salisbury; at least, if thou canst speak;
How far’st thou, mirror of all martial men?
One of thy eyes, and thy cheek's side struck off!!
Accursed tower! accursed fatal hand,
That hath contriv'd this woful tragedy!
In thirteen battles Salisbury o’ercame;
Henry the fifth he first train'd to the wars :
Whilst any trump did sound, or drum ftruck up,
His sword did ne'er leave striking in the field. —
Yet liv'st thou, Salisbury? though thy speech doth

One eye thou hast to look to heaven for grace: 2
The fun with one eye vieweth all the world.-
Heaven, be thou gracious to none alive,
If Salisbury wants mercy at thy hands !-

i enfeebled.] This word is here used as a quadrifyllable.

MALONE. 9 __ thy cheek's fide struck off!] Camden says in his Remaines, that the French scarce knew the use of great ordnance, till the siege of Mans in 1425, when a breach was made in the walls of that town by the English, under the conduct of this earl of Salifbury; and that he was the first English gentleman that was fiain by a cannon-ball. MALONE. 2 One eye thou haft &c.] A similar thought occurs in King Lear:

my lord, you have one eye left,
" To see some mischief on him." STEEVENS.

Bear hence his body, I will help to bury it.
Sir Thomas Gargrave, hast thou any life?
Speak unto Talbot; nay, look up to him.
Salisbury, cheer thy spirit with this comfort;
Thou shalt not die, whiles -
He beckons with his hand, and smiles on me;
As who should say, When I am dead and gone,
Remember to avenge me on the French.
Plantagenet, I will; and Nero-like,
Play on the lute, beholding the towns burn:
Wretched shall France be only in my name.

[Thunder heard; afterwards an alarum. What stir is this? What tumult's in the heavens? Whence cometh this alarum, and the noise?

Enter a Messenger.

Mess. My lord, my lord, the French have ga

ther'd head: The Dauphin, with one Joan la Pucelle join'd, -A holy prophetess, new risen up,Is come with a great power to raise the siege.

[SALISBURY groans. TAL. Hear, hear, how dying Salisbury doth


} - and Nero-like,] The first folio reads: Plantagenet, I will; and like thee

Steevens. In the old copy, the word Nero is wanting, owing probably to the transcriber's not being able to make out the name. The editor of the second folio, with his usual freedom, altered the line thus:

and Nero-like will Malone. I am content to read with the second folio (not conceiving the emendation in it to be an arbitrary one) and omit only the needless repetition of the verb will. Surely there is some absurdity in making Talbot address Plantagenet, and invoke Nero, in the same


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