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mother's funeral, as we know him to have been in Stratford in the following month. His brother Richard died in 1612. His daughter Judith married in 1616 a Mr. Thomas Quiney, by whom she had three sons, who all died unmarried.
The last time we hear of Shakespeare as an actor is in 1603 when he performed in Ben Jonson's Sejanus, soon after which he retired from the stage, perhaps in 1604. In 1608 however he was still a sharer in the two theatres. In 1609, we find from a document which has come down to us, that Shakespeare held four shares in the Blackfriars theatre valued at that time at £ 133 6 s. 8 d. per annum: besides this he was proprietor of the wardrobe valued at £ 500, this we may presume he lent to the company for a certain consideration, and ten per cent. seems a very low rate of payment; if taken however at that sum, it would add £ 50 a year to the £ 133 6 s. 8 d. already mentioned, making £ 183 6 s. 8 d. a year, besides what our great dramatist gained by the profits of his pen. Without including any thing on this account, and supposing the Globe to have been as profitable as the Blackfriars, it is evident that Shakespeare's income could hardly have been less (taking every known source of emolument into view), than £ 400 a year, a sum equal to £ 2000 a year at the present time. From this period until 1612 we hear very little of our dramatist, when it is probable that he retired permanently to Stratford, having previously disposed of his theatrical property in London. Here, in his native town, he passed the rest of his days in tranquil retirement, and in the enjoyment of the society of his friends, whether residing in the country or occasionally visiting him from the metropolis. “The latter part of his life," says Rowe, “was spent, as all men of sense will wish theirs may be, in ease, retirement, and the society of his friends;” and he adds what cannot be doubted, that “his pleasurable wit and good-nature engaged him in the acquaintance, and entitled him to the friendship of the gentlemen of the neighbourhood.” He must have been of a lively and companionable disposition; and his long residence in London, amid the bustling and varied scenes connected with his public
life, independently of his natural powers of conversation, could not fail to render his society most agreeable and desirable.
In 1616 he was seized with his last and fatal illness, what this was we have no satisfactory means of knowing, but it was probably not of long duration; for if when he subscribed his will he had really been in health, we are persuaded that at the age of only fifty-two he would have signed his name with greater steadiness and distinctness. All three signatures are more or less infirm and illegible, but he seems to have made an effort to write his best when he affixed both his names at length at the end. “By me William Shakspeare." In regard to his will the request which has attracted most attention is an interlineation in the following words, "Item, I gyve
únto my wief
my second best bed with the furniture." Upon this passage has been founded a charge against Shakespeare that he only remembered his wife as an afterthought, and then merely gave
her wold bed.” Our dramatist has of late years been relieved from the stigma, thus attempted to be thrown upon him, by the mere remark, that his property being principally freehold, the widow by the ordinary operation of the law of England would be entitled to, what is legally known by the term dower.
A monument was erected to Shakespeare in Stratford church, and on a tablet below his bust are placed the following inscriptions:
“Jvdicio Pylivm, genio Socratem, arte Maronem,
Terra tegit, popvlvs mæret, Olympys habet.
Obiit Año Doi 1616
Ætatis 53, die 23 Ap." On a flat grave-stone in front of the monument, we read these lines, and tradition says, that they were written by Shake
“Good frend, for Jesvs sake forbeare
And cvrst be he yt moves my bones." We have thus brought into a consecutive narrative the particulars respecting the life of the “myriad-minded Shakespeare” which we have been able, during a long series of years, to collect. Yet, after all, we cannot but be aware how little has been accomplished. “Of William Shakespeare,” says Hallam, “whom, through the mouths of those whom he has inspired to body forth the modifications of his immense mind, we seem to know better than any human writer, it may be truly said that we scarcely know anything. We see him, so far as we do see him, not in himself, but in a reflex image from the objectivity in which he is manifested: he is Falstaff, and Mercutio, and Malvolio, and Jacques, and Portia,
and Imogen, and Lear, and Othello; but to us he is scarcely a determined person, a substantial reality of past time, the man Shakespeare. The name of Shakespeare is the greatest in our literature, it is the greatest in all literature. No man ever came near to him in the creative powers of the mind; no man had ever such strength at once, and such variety of imagination."
If the details of his life be imperfect, the history of his mind is complete; and we leave the reader to turn from the contemplation of "the man Shakespeare" to THE POET SHAKESPEARE.
Apparent, heir-apparent, next claimant. Abide, to sojourn, to tarry awhile; to Apperil, peril.
answer for, to be accountable for, to Apple-John, a shrivelled and withered stand the consequences of.
apple. Abodements, forebodements, omens. Approbation, proof; probation, noviAby, the same as to abide (see its tiate. second sense).
Approof, approbation; proof. Acture, action.
Approve, to prove; toratify, to confirm; Adamant, the magnet, the loadstone. to recommend to approbation. Addiction, inclination ; the being ad- Aquilon, the North Wind. dicted or given to.
Arabian bird, the phani.. Addition, title, mark of distinction; Arch, chief, leader. exaggeration.
Argier, the old name for Algiers. Address, to prepare, to make ready. Argo, a vulgar corruption of the Latin Admittance, fashion.
word ergo. Affection, affectation; imagination; Argosy, a ship of great bulk and burden, sympathy.
fit either for merchandise or war. Affectioned, affected.
Argument, conversation, discourse; Affeer'd, confirmed , established.
subject, matter. Affin'd, joined by affinity.
Articulate, to enter into articles; to Affront, a meeting face to face, a hostile exhibit in articles. encounter,
Aspersion, sprinkling. Affront, to meet, to encounter. Ass, a quibble between as the conAffy, to betroth; to trust, to confide. ditional particle, and ass the beast of Aglet-baby, a small image or head cut burden. on the tag of a point or lace.
Assinego, a silly, a stupid fellow. Agnize, to acknowledge, to avou. Atomies, atoms. Aim, guess, conjecture; - to cry aim, Atomy, a corruption of anatomy, a
to encourage; to give aim, to direct; skeleton. - to aim, to aim at; to guess, to con- Atone, to agree, to unite; to reconcile. jecture.
Attask'd, taxed, blamed. Alderliefest, dearest of all,
Attorney, an advocate, a pleader; a Ale, alehouse.
substitute, a deputy. Aleven, eleven.
Aunt, a good old dame; a cant term All-hallown summer,
late summer. for a loose woman. Allow, to approve; to license, to privilege. Awkward, distorted; adverse. Amaimon, the name of a demon. Ames-ace, both aces, – the lowest throw upon the dice.
Baccare, a cant exclamation, signifyAmiss, misfortune; fault.
ing “ Go back.” Amort (All), dejected , dispirited. Bafie, to treat ignominiously, to use Anchor, an anchorite, hermit.
contemptuously. Ancient, a standard ; a standard-bearer, Bajazet's mute; the allusion in this an ensign-bearer.
passage (where the original reads Angel (An ancient), an old worthy. mule) has not yet been explained.
Baldrick, a belt.
Bilbo, a sword. Bale, sorrow, evil.
Bilboés, a bar of iron with fetters anBalk'd, piled up in balks or ridges. nexed to it. Ballast, the contracted form of ballased Bill, a sort of pike or halbert, or rather or ballaced, ballasted.
a kind of battle-axe 'affixed to a long Balm, the oil of consecration.
stat; a forest-bill, an implement carBan, a curse; to curse.
ried by foresters; a placard posted by Band, a bond.
public challengers ; à billet, å note. Ban-dogs, properly band-dogs, so called Bin, been. because on account of their fierceness Bird-bolt, a short thick arrow with a
they required to be bounil or chained. blunted' extremity, for killing birds Banquet, dessert.
without piercing them. Barbason, the name of a demon. Bir dom, thright. Barbed steeds, steeds equipped with Bisson, blind; blinding.
military trappings and ornaments. Blench, to start off, to fly off, to shrink, Baring, shaving.
to flinch. Barm, yeast.
Blenches, starts, or aberrations from Barson, a corruption of Barston, a rectitude. village in Warwickshire.
Blent, blended. Base, a rustic game.
Block, the shape or fashion of a ha, Basilisk, an imaginary creature (called properly the mould on which felt hats
also cockatrice), supposed to kill by were formed; the hat itself. its very look ; a huge piece of ordnance, Blood, disposition, inclination, tem
carrying a ball of very great weight. perament, impulse; to be in blood, Basta, enough.
to be in good condition, to be vigorous. Bastard, a sweetish wine.
Blue-coats, the common dress of sertBate, strife, contention.
ing-men in Shakespeare's time. Bate, to flutter, to flop the wings; to Bob, a taunt, à scoff.
abáte, to diminish, to lessen ; to grow Bob, to cheat. less; to except; to blunt.
botch'd. Batlet, a bat for beating clothes in Bodkin, a small dagger. washing.
Bollen, swollen, Batten, to grow fat.
Bolted, sifted. Bavin, a faggot of brushwood.
Bombard, a large leathern vessel for Bavin 'wits, flashing wits.
distributing liquor. Beadsman, one who prays for the wel- Bombast, material for stuffing out fare of another.
dresses. Bear in hand, to keep in expectation, Book, one's studies, learning; a writ
to flatter one's hopes, to amuse with ing, a paper. false pretences.
Boot, profit, gain, something added; Beautified, beautiful.
booty; - to benefit, to enrich; to put Become, to adorn, to set-off, to grace.
on boots. Be-mete, to be-measure.
Bosky, woody. Benison, blessing.
Bosom, wish, desire. Besmirch, to be-smut.
Bots, worms that breed in the entrails Besort, attendance, train.
of horses. Besort, to suit, to befit, to become. Bottom, a low ground, a valley; a ball Bestow, to stow, to lodge, to place; to of thread. carry, to show,
Bottomlit on me, wind it on mo, make Bestraught, distraught, mad.
me the bottom or centre on which it is Beteem, to give in streaming abundance; wound. to suffer, to permit.
Bought and sold , see: buy and sell. Bewray, to discover.
Bourn, a limit, a boundary; a brook, Bid, to invite.
a rivulet. Bid, endured.
Brabbler, a clamorous quarrelsome