« السابقةمتابعة »
Some tricks of desperation : All, but mariners,
Pro. Why, that's my spirit !
Ari. Close by, my master.
Ari. Not a hair perish'd ;
If it be at all necessary to explain the meaning, it is this : Not a foul but felt such a fever as madmen feel, when the frantic fit is upon them. STEBVENS.
fuftaining ji. e. Their garments that bore them up and supported them. So K. Lear, ačt IV. sc. iv.
“ In our sustaining corn.” Ms. Edwards was of opinion that we should read fea-stained garments; for (says he) it was not the floating of their cloaths, but the magic of Prospero which preserved, as it it had wrecked them. Nor was the miracle, that their garments had not been at first discoloured by the sea-water, which even that Juftaining would not have prevented, unless it had been on the air, not on the water ; but, as Gonzalo says, "6 that their garments “ being (as they were) drenched in the sea, held notwithitanding " their freshness and gloss, being rather new-dyed than stained 56 with salt-water.”
For this, and all such notes as are taken from the MSS. of the late Mr. Edwards, I am indebted to the friendship of Benjamin Way, Esq; who very obligingly procured them from the executors of that gentleman, with leave for their publication. Such of them as are omitted in this edition had been sometimes fare. stalled by the remarks of others, and sometimes by my own. The reader, however, might have been juftly offended, had any other reasons prevented me from communicating the unpublished fenti. ments of that sprightly critick and most amiable man, as entire as I received them. Steevens.
This note of Mr. Edwards, with which I suppose no reader is fatisfied, Mews with how much greater ease critical emendations are destroyed than made, and how willingly every man would be changing the text, if his imagination would furnish alterations. JOHNSON,
But fresher than before: and, as thou bad'st me,
Pro. Of the king's ship,
Ari. Safely in harbour
2 From the Aill-vex'd Bermoothes. ] Theobald says Bermoothes is printed by mistake for Bermudas. No. That was the name by which the islands then went, as we may see by the voyages of that time ; and by our author's contemporary poets. Fletcher, in his Women Plcased, says, The devil should think of purchasing that egg-shell to victual out a witch for the Bermoothes. Smith, in his account of these islands, p. 172. says, that the Bermudas were so fearful to the world, that many called them The Ille of Devils.-P. 174.- to all seamen no less terrible than an inchanted den of furies. And no wonder, for the clime was extremely subject to storms and hurricanes ; and the islands were surrounded with scattered rocks lying shallowly hid under the surface of the water. WARBURTON.
Again in Decker's If this be not a good Play, the Devil is in it, 1612.
" Sir, if you have made me tell a lye, they'll send me on a “ voyage to the island of Hogs and Devils, tbe Bermudas,” ,
STEEVENS, The opinion that Bermudas was haunted with evil spirits continued fo late as the civil wars. In a little piece of fir John Berkinhead's, intitled, Two Conturies of Paul's Church-yard, una cum indice expurgatorio, &c. 12°, in page 62, under the title of Cares of Conscience, is this.
34. " Whether Bermudas and the parliament-house lie under “ one planet, seeing both are haunted with devils.” Percy.
Bermudas was on this account the cant name for some privileged place, in which the cheats and riotous bullies of Shakespeare's time assembled. So in The Devil is an Ass, by Ben. Jonson,
" keeps he still your quarter
The mariners all under hatches stow'd ;
Pro. Ariel, thy charge
Ari. Paft the mid season.
Ari. Is there more toil ? Since thou dost give me · pains, Let me remember thee what thou hast promis'd, Which is not yet perform’d me.
Pro. How now? moody?
Ari. My liberty.
Ari. I pray thee :
Again in one of his Epiftles,
" Have their Bermudas, and their straights i'th' Strand." Again in The Devil is an Ass,
I gave my word ! For one that's run away to the Bermudas." STEEVENS, 3- the Mediterranean flotę.] Flote is wave, Flot. Fr.
STEEVENS, 4 What is the time on the day?] This passage needs not be disturbed, it being common to ask a question, which the next inoment enables us to answer; he that thinks it faulty may eafily adjust it thus :
Pro, What is the time o? the day? Paft the mid seafon?
Without or grudge, or grumblings : thou didft pro
Pro. 5 Dost thou forget
s Doft thou forget] That the character and conduct of Prospero may be understood, something must be known of the system of enchantment, which supplied all the marvellous found in the romances of the middle ages. This system seems to be founded on the opinion that the fallen fpirits, having different degrees of guilt, had different habitations allotted them at their expulsion, fome being confined in hell, fome (as Hooker, who delivers the opinion of our poet's age, expresses it) dispersed in air, Some on earth, fome in water, others in caves, dens, or minerals under the earth. Of these, fome were more malignant and mischievous than others. The earthy spirits seem to have been thought the most depraved, and the aerial the least vitiated. Thus Prospero observes of Ariel:
Thou waft a spirit too delicate
To act her earthy and abhorr'd commands. Over these spirits a power might be obtained by certain rites performed or charms learned. This power was called The Black
Art, or Knowledge of Enchantment. The enchanter being (as king James observes in his Demonology) one who commands the devil, whereas the witch serves him. Those who thought best of this art, the existence of which was, I am afraid, believed very seriously, held, that certain sounds and characters had a physical power over spirits, and compelled their agency ; others, who condemned the practice, which in reality was surely never practised, were of opinion, with more reason, that the power of charms arose only from compact, and was no more than the spirits voluntary allowed them for the seduction of man. The art was held by all, though not equally criminal, yet unlawful, and therefore Casaubon, speaking of one who had commerce with spirits, blames him, though he imagines him one of the best kind who dealt with them by way of command. Thus Prospero repents of his art in the lost scene. The spirits were always considered as in fome measure enslaved to the enchanter, at least for a time, and as serving with unwillingness, therefore Ariel so often begs for liberty; and Caliban observes, that the spirits serve Prospero with no good will, but hate him rootedly. Of these trifles enough.
Of the salt deep;
Ari. I do not, fir.
Pro. Thou ly'st, inalignant thing! Hast thou forgot The foul witch Sycorax, who, with age, and envy, Was grown into a hoop? haft thou forgot her ?
Ari. No, fir.
Pro. Oh, was the so? I niust,
Ari. Ay, fir.
o To run upon the Marp wind of the north;] Sir W. Davenant and Dryden, in their alteration of this play, have made a very wanton change in the line, and read,
To run against, &c. STEEVENS.
in Argier.] Argier is the ancient English name for Algiers. See a pamphlet entitled, “ A true Relation of the Travailes, &c. of William Davies, barber-surgeon, &c.?? 1614. : In this is a chapter "on the description, &c. of Argier." STEEVENS,