Page:Romeo and Juliet (The Illustrated Shakespeare, 1847).djvu/59

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NOTES ON ROMEO AND JULIET.


"That, unawares, eyes may wink."--Thus Knight, with whom Collier agrees. They owe the reading to .Jackson's "Shakespcare's Genius Justified." "The common reading, (says Knight,) which is that 'of all the old copies, is That runaways' eyes may weep. "This passage has been a perpetual source of conten- tion to the commentators. Their difficulties are well represented by Warbarton's question--' What run-aways are these, whose eyes Juliet is wishing to have stopt ?' Warburton says, Phvebus is the run-away. Stevens ar- gues that 2Vight is the run-away. Douce thinks that Juliet is the run-away. Monck Mason is confident that the passage ought to be, ' that Reomy's eyes may wink,' Reomy being a new personage, created out of the French Renommee, and answering, we suppose, to the 'Rumour' of Spenser. After all this learning, there comes an unlearned compositor, Zachary Jackson, and sets the matter traight. Run-sways is a misprint for .unawares. The word unawares, in the old orth- ography, is unawayres, (it is so spelled in the third part of Hv.ay VI.,) and the r having been misplaced, pro- duced this word of puzzle, rn-awayes. We have not the least hesitation in adopting Jackson's reading." "Hood my VA') blood, nA. in my cheeks."-- Terms of falconry. An unmanned hawk, says Stevens, is one that is not brought to endure company. Bating, is fluttering with the win, as striving to fly away. " say thou l,d I."--The affirmative ay was, in Shakespeare's time almost invariably spelt with a capi- tal I; and "that bare vowel" it is obviously necessary .to retain here. Scrr �. ', Enter Rov.o and The stage-direction in the first edition is :--"Enter Romeo and Juliet, at the window." In the later edi- tions, "Enter Romeo and Juliet aloft." They ap- peared, probably, as Malone remarks, in the balcony at the back of the stage. The scene in the Poet's eye was doubtless the large and massy projecting balcony before one or more windows, common in Italian pal- aces, and not unfrequent in Gothic civil architecture. The loggia, an open gallery, or high terrace, communi- cating with the upper apartments of a palace, is a com- mon feature in Palladian architecture, and would also be well adapted to such a scene. Malone and Collier also have shown, in the accounts of the old English stage, the actors were intended to appear on the balcony or upper stage, usual in the construction of the old Eng- lish theatre, which was used for many similar purposes, as for the exhibition of the play in Hamlet, for dia- logues, where part is from the walls of a castle or for- tified town, as in the historical plays, &c. � " the lark makes sweet )vso."A division' in music is a number of quick notes sung to one syllable; a kind of warbling. This continued to prevail in vocal music till recently. "Some say, the lark and loathed toad change eyes."-- The toad having very fine eyes, and the lark very ugly ones, was the occasion of a saying that the lark and toad had changed eyes. This tradition Dr. Johnson states himself to have heard in a rustic rhyme To heaven I'd fly, But that the toad begtiled me of mine eye. Juliet means that the croak of the toad would have been no indication of the appearance of day, and conse- quently no signal for her lover's departure. The "hunts-up" was the name of the tune anciently played to wake the hunters, and collect them together. ee ChappelFs "National English Airs." �' Enter Lady In the dialogue between Juliet and her parents, and in the scenes with the Nurse, we seem to have before us the whole of her previous education and habits: we see her on the one hand, kept in severe subjection by her austere parents; and on the other fondled and spoiled by a foolish old nurse---a situation perfectly ac- cordant with the manners of the time: Then Lady Capulet comes weeping by with her train of velvet, her black hood, her fan, and rosary--the very bean-ideal of a proud Italian matron of the fifteenth centuQ', whose offer to poison Romeo in revenge for the death of Tybalt, stamps her with one very characteristic trait of the age and country. Yet she loves her daughter; and there is a' touch of remorseful tenderness in her lamentations over her, which adds to our impression of the timid softness of Juliet, and the harsh subjection in which she has been kept.--Mgs. Jrso. "0 ! he's a lovely genlleman."--The character of the Nurse exhibits a just picture of those whose actions have no principles for their foundation. She'has been unfaithful to the trust reposed in her by Capulet, and is ready to embrace any expediency that offers, to avert the consequences of her first infidelity. The picture is not, however, an original; the nurse in the poem ex- hibits the same readiness to accommodate herself to the present conjuncture. Vanbrugh, in The Relapse, has copied, in this respect, the character of his nurse from Shakespeare.--STrv.s AD MALONE. ACT IV.--ScEE I. ".rind ere this hand, by thee to Romeo srAL')."--The seals of deeds were not formerly impressed on the parch- ment itself, but were appended on distinct slips or labels affixed to it. Hence, in Ka Rcau) II., the Duke of York discovers, by the depending seal, a covenant with his son, the Duke of Aumerle, had entered into: What seal is that which hangs without thy bosom ? "Shall keep his tative progress, but surcease."--The quarto,-1597, has, A dull and heavy slumber, which shall seize Each vital spirit; for no pulse shall kccpe His natural pogress, but sureease to beat. This may seem preferable; but the whole speech is much briefer in the earliest edition, occupying only four- teen lines. "In thy best robes uncover'd on the bier."The Ital- ian custom here alluded to is still continued. Rogers, in his "Italy," describes such a scene :-- ]]ut now by fits A dull and dismal noise assailed the ear, A wail, a chant, louder and louder yet: And now a strange fantastic troop appeared ! Thronging they came, as from the shades below; 3, !! of a ghostly white !--" O say, (I cried,) l)o not the living here bury the dead ? l)o spirits cme and fetch them ? What are these That seem not of this world, and mock the day; Each with a burning taper in his hand ?"-- ' It is an ancient brotherhood thou scent. Such their apparel. Through the long, long line, Look where thou wilt, no likeness of a man: The livm � masked, tl e dead alone uncovered. But mark !"--And, lying on her funeral couch, Like one asleep, her eyelids closed, her hands Folded together on her modest breast, 9, s 'twere her nightly posture, through the crowd 8he same at !ast,--and richly, gaily clad, As for a birth-day feast ! Scr.r II. "Sirrub, go hire me twenty cv coos."--The "cunning cook," in the time of Shakespeare, was, as he is at present, a great personage. According to an entry in the books of the London Stationers' Co., for 1560, the preacher was paid six shillings and two pence for his labour; the minstrel twelve shillings; and the cook fifteen shilling. The relative scale of estimation for theology, poetry, and gastronomy, has not been much altered during two cnturies, either in the city gene- rally, or in the company which represents the city's 59