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With bitter fasts, with penitential groans,
Pro. Enough; I read your fortune in your eye.
Val. Even she; and is she not a heavenly saint?
Pro. When I was sick you gave me bitter pills,
Val. Then speak the truth by her: if not divine, Yet let her be a principality, Sovereign to all the creatures on the earth.
Pro. Except my mistress.
Val. Sweet, except not any,
Pro. Have I not reason to prefer mine own?
Val. And I will help thee to prefer her, too:
Pro. Why, Valentine, what braggardism is this?
To her, whose worth makes other worthies nothing.
Pro. Then, let her alone.
Pro. But she loves you?
Pro. Go on before; I shall enquire you forth.
Val. Will you make haste?
8 Is it mine eye, or Valentinus' praise,] This line presents a difficulty. The folio, 1623, reads,
“ It is mine, or Valentine's praise ?”
Which, bhimpression of Valentine
Her true perfection, or my false transgression,
which the folio, 1632, alters thus :
“ Is it mine then, or Valentinian's praise ?" in order to cure the defect of the metre. Malone would have it
“Is it her mien, or Valentinus' praise ?" and Warburton lays it down that “the line was originally thus ;" —
“It is mine eye, or Valentino's praise;" which is clearly not interrogative, as the punctuation of the oldest copy shows it ought to be. Malone was too much taken with the plausibility of the emendation suggested to him, to consider that it gives no support to the next two lines :
“ Her true perfection, or my false transgression,
That makes me, reasonless, to reason thus ?” He was right in adopting Valentinus, and wrong in rejecting eye, which was the cause of the “ transgression " of Proteus. Valentinus for Valentine we have had already, Ac. i. sc. 3. Perhaps, after all, the old and true reading was “mine eyen," which was corrupted and abbreviated by the old printer to mine.
9 'Tis but her PICTURE-) Johnson speaks of this line, as “evidently a slip of attention,” as if Proteus could have forgotten that he had just seen Silvia herself, and not her “picture.” He uses “picture” figuratively, meaning merely exterior as compared with inward " perfections."
10 And that hath DAZZLED-] Dazzled must be read as a trisyllable : in the second folio so is unnecessarily inserted after it, in order to complete the supposed deficiency in the measure,
| There is no REASON-] Reason is here to be taken in the sense of doubt.
The Same. A Street.
Enter SPEED and LAUNCE. Speed. Launce! by mine honesty, welcome to Milan?.
Launce. Forswear not thyself, sweet youth, for I am not welcome. I reckon this always—that a man is never undone, till he be hang’d; nor never welcome to a place, till some certain shot be paid, and the hostess say, welcome.
Speed. Come on, you mad-cap, I'll to the alehouse with you presently; where for one shot of five pence thou shalt have five thousand welcomes. But, sirrah, how did thy master part with madam Julia ?
Launce. Marry, after they closed in earnest, they parted very fairly in jest.
Speed. But shall she marry him?
Launce. Marry, thus: when it stands well with him, it stands well with her.
Speed. What an ass art thou? I understand thee not.
Launce. What a block art thou, that thou canst not. My staff understands me.
Speed. What thou say’st?
Launce. Ay, and what I do too: look thee; I'll but lean, and my staff understands me.
2- Milan.) Padua in the old editions-a decided error.
Speed. It stands under thee, indeed.
Launce. Ask my dog: if he say, ay, it will; if he say, no, it will; if he shake his tail, and say nothing, it will.
Speed. The conclusion is, then, that it will.
Launce. Thou shalt never get such a secret from me, but by a parable.
Speed. 'Tis well that I get it so. But, Launce, how say'st thou, that my master is become a notable lover?
Launce. I never knew him otherwise.
Launce. A notable lubber, as thou reportest him to be.
Speed. Why, thou whoreson ass, thou mistak’st me.
Launce. Why, fool, I meant not thee; I meant thy master.
Speed. I tell thee, my master is become a hot lover.
Launce. Why, I tell thee, I care not though he burn himself in love, if thou wilt go with me to the alehouse': if not, thou art an Hebrew, a Jew, and not worth the name of a Christian.
Launce. Because thou hast not so much charity in thee, as to go to the ale with a Christian. Wilt thou go? Speed. At thy service.
3- I care not though he burn himself in love, if thou wilt go with me to the ale-house :) This passage has been misunderstood from defective pointing : instead of a period after “love,” as in the old copies, we ought to place a comma, the meaning being that Launce does not care whether Valentine burn himself in love or not, if Speed will but go to the ale-house with him. This reading renders the word so, inserted in the second folio, and subsequently adopted by all the commentators, unnecessary.