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Duke. Be not so hot; the duke Dare no more stretch this finger of mine, than he Dare rack his own ; his subject am I not, Nor here provincial”: My business in this state Made me a looker-on here in Vienna, Where I have seen corruption boil and bubble, Till it o'er-run the stew *: laws, for all faults ; But faults so countenanc'd, that the strong statutes Stand like the forfeits in a barber's shop, As much in mock as mark.

3 Nor here PROVINCIAL :] Nor here accountable. The meaning seems to be, I am not one of his natural subjects, nor of any dependent province. Johnson.

The different orders of monks have a chief, who is called the General of the order; and they have also superiors, subordinate to the general, in the several provinces through which the order may be dispersed. The Friar therefore means to say, that the Duke dares not touch a finger of his, for he could not punish him by his own authority, as he was not his subject, nor through that of the superior, as he was not of that province. M. Mason.

- BOIL AND BUBBLE, Till it o'er-run the stew :) I fear that, in the present instance, our author's metaphor is from the kitchen. So, in Macbeth:

“ Like a hell-broth, boil and bubble.Steevens. s Stand like the forfeits in a barber's shop,] Barbers' shops were, at all times, the resort of idle people :

Tonstrina erat quædam; hic solebamus ferè

Plerumque eam opperiri — which Donatus calls apta sedes otiosis. Formerly with us, the better sort of people went to the barber's shop to be trimmed : who then practised the under parts of surgery : so that he had occasion for numerous instruments, which lay there ready for use ; and the idle people, with whom his shop was generally crouded, would be perpetually handling and misusing them. To remedy which, I suppose there was placed up against the wall a table of forfeitures, adapted to every offence of this kind ; which, it is not likely, would long preserve its authority. WARBURTON.

This explanation may serve till a better is discovered. But whoever has seen the instruments of a chirurgeon, knows that they may be very easily kept out of improper hands in a very small box, or in his pocket. Johnson.

It was formerly part of a barber's occupation to pick the teeth and ears. So, in the old play of Herod and Antipater, 1622, Try

Escal. Slander to the state ! Away with him to

Ang. What can you vouch against him, signior

Lucio ?
Is this the man that you did tell us of ?

Lucio. 'Tis he, my lord. Come hither, goodman bald-pate : Do you know me ?

Duke. I remember you, sir, by the sound of your voice: I met you at the prison, in the absence of the duke.

Lucio. O, did you so ? And do you remember what you said of the duke ?

Duke. Most notedly, sir.

Lucio. Do you so, sir ? And was the duke a fleshmonger, a fool, and a coward", as you then reported him to be ?

phon the barber enters with a case of instruments, to each of which he addresses himself separately :

“ Toothpick, dear toothpick ; earpick, both of you

“ Have been her sweet companions !"- &c. I have conversed with several people who had repeatedly read the list of forfeits alluded to by Shakspeare, but have failed in my endeavours to procure a copy of it. The metrical one, published by the late Dr. Kenrick, was a forgery. Steevens.

'I believe Dr. Warburton's explanation in the main to be right, only that instead of chirurgical instruments, the barber's prohibited implements were principally his razors ; his whole stock of which, from the number and impatience of his customers on a Saturday night or a market morning, being necessarily laid out for use, were exposed to the idle fingers of the bye-standers, in waiting for succession to the chair.

These forfeits were as much in mock as mark, both because the barber had no authority of himself to enforce them, and also as they were of a ludicrous nature. I perfectly remember to have seen them in Devonshire, (printed like King Charles's Rules,) though I cannot recollect the contents. Henley. 6 — and a coWARD,] So again, afterwards :

“ You, sirrah, that know me for a fool, a coward,

“ One all of luxury.- ." But Lucio had not, in the former conversation, mentioned cowardice among the faults of the Duke, Such failures of memory are incident to writers more diligent than this poet. Johnson.

Duke. You must, sir, change persons with me, ere you make that my report : you, indeed, spoke so of him; and much more, much worse.

Lucio. O thou damnable fellow ! Did not I pluck thee by the nose, for thy speeches ?

Duke. I protest, I love the duke, as I love my


Ang. Hark! how the villain would close now, after his treasonable abuses.

Escal. Such a fellow is not to be talk'd withal:Away with him to prison :- Where is the provost ? -Away with him to prison ; lay bolts enough upon him : let him speak no more :- Away with those giglots too?, and with the other confederate companion. [The Provost lays hand on the Duke.

Duke. Stay, sir; stay a while.
Ang. What! resists he ? Help him, Lucio.

Lucio. Come, sir; come, sir ; come, sir; foh, sir : Why, you bald-pated, lying rascal! you must be hooded, must you! show your knave's visage, with a pox to you ! show your sheep-biting face, and be hang'd an hour ! Will't not off ?

Pulls off the Friar's hood, and discovers

the Duke.

7 — those GigLots too,] A giglot is a wanton wench. So, in King Henry VI. Part I.:

“— young Talbot was not born

“ To be the pillage of a giglot wench.” STEEVENS. 8- show your sheep-biting face, and be hang'd an hour ! Will't not off ?] This is intended to be the common language of vulgar indignation. Our phrase on such occasions is simply : “ show your sheep-biting face and be hanged." The words an hour have no particular use here, nor are authorised by custom. I suppose it was written thus : “show your sheep-biting face, and be hanged--an how? will't not off?" In the midland counties, upon any unexpected obstruction or resistance, it is common to exclaim an' how? Johnson.

Dr. Johnson's alteration is wrong. In The Alchemist we meet with “a man that has been strangled an hour."

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Duke. Thou art the first knave, that e'er made a

duke.—— First, Provost, let me bail these gentle three :-Sneak not away, sir; [To Lucio.] for the friar and

you Must have a word anon :lay hold on him.

Lucro. This may prove worse than hanging. Duke. What you have spoke, I pardon ; sit you down.

To ESCALUS. We'll borrow place of him :-Sir, by your leave :

[TO ANGELO. Hast thou or word, or wit, or impudence, That yet can do thee office o ? If thou hast, Rely upon it till my tale be heard, And hold no longer out. Ang.

O my dread lord,
I should be guiltier than my guiltiness,
To think I can be undiscernible,

“ What, Piper, ho! be hang'd a-while," is a line of an old madrigal. Farmer.

A similar expression is found in Ben Jonson's Bartholomew Fair, 1614: “ Leave the bottle behind you, and be curst a-while."

MALONE. Dr. Johnson is much too positive in asserting “ that the words an hour have no particular use here, nor are authorised by custom,” as Dr. Farmer las well proved. The poet evidently refers to the ancient mode of punishing by collistrigium, or the original pillory, made like that part of the pillory at present which receives the neck, only it was placed horizontally, so that the culprit hung suspended in it by his chin, and the back of his head. A distinct account of it may be found, if I mistake not, in Mr. Barrington's Observations on the Statutes. Henley.

There is indeed a distinct account of the collistrigium in Barrington's Observations on the Statutes, but it gives no support whatever to Mr. Henley's explanation. Mr. Gifford, in a note on the passage quoted from Bartholomew Fair, has satisfactorily shown that an hour is merely a vulgar expletive, and that be hanged an hour means no more than be hanged. Boswell.

9 -- can do thee office?] i. e. do thee service. STEEVENS.

When I perceive, your grace, like power divine,
Hath look'd upon my passes': Then, good prínce,
No longer session hold upon my shame,
But let my trial be mine own confession ;
Immediate sentence then, and sequent death,
Is all the grace I beg.

Come hither, Mariana :-
Say, wast thou e'er contracted to this woman?

Ang. I was, my lord.
DUKE. Go take her hence, and marry her in-

stantly.-- .
Do you the office, friar; which consummate?,
Return him here again :-Go with him, Provost.


Provost. Escal. My lord, I am more amaz’d at his dis

honour, Than at the strangeness of it. Duke.

Come hither, Isabel :
Your friar is now your prince: As I was then
Advertising, and holy to your business,
Not changing heart with habit, I am still
Attorney'd at your service.

O, give me pardon,
That I, your vassal, have employ'd and pain'd
Your unknown sovereignty.

You are pardon'd, Isabel :
And now, dear maid, be you as free to us *.
Your brother's death, I know, sits at your heart;

1 - my PASSES :] i. e. what has past in my administration. “ Not so; (says the Edinburgh Magazine, Nov. 1786,) Passes means here artful devices, deceitful contrivances. Tours de passepasse, in French, are tricks of jugglery." STEEvens. 2 - which CONSUMMATE,] i. e. which being consummated.

MALONE. 3 Advertising, and holy --] Attentive and faithful. Johnson.

4 - be you as FREE to us.] Be as generous to us; pardon us as we have pardoned you. JOHNSON.

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