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He, that no more must say, is listen’d more
Then they whom youth and ease have taught to glore; More are men's ends mark'd, than their lives before :
The setting fun, and musick at the close",
York. No; it is stopp'd with other flattering sounds,
Gaunt. Methinks, I am a prophet new inspir'd;
0 m at ibe close, ] This I suppose to be a musical term. STEEVENS.
7 Report of fashions in proud Italy ;] Our author, who gives to all nations the customs of England, and to all ages the manners of his own, bas charged the times of Richard with a folly not perhaps known then, but very frequent in Shakfpeare's time, and much lamented by the wiseft and best of our ancestors. JOHNSON.
& Wbere will dotb mutiny with wit's regard.] Where the will rebels, against the notices of the understanding. JOHNSON.
9- wbose way bimself will choaje;] Do not attempt to guide bim, wbo, whatever thou fralt say, will take his own course. JOHNSON. raft] That is, bally, viokrit. JeHNSON.
Light vanity, insatiate cormorant,
That 2 Again in feftion, &c.] I suppose Shakspeare meant to say, that inanders are secured by their situation both from war and pefilence.
JOHNSON. In Allot's England's Parnassus, 1600, this passage is quoted" Against inception, &c.” Perhaps the word might be in feftion, if such a word was in use. FARMER.
3-lefs bappier lands;] So read all the editions, except Hanmer's, which has lefs bappy. I believe Shakspeare, from the habit of saying more bappier according to the custom of his time, inadvertently writ lefs bappier. JOHNSON. 4 Feard by tbeir breed,] i. e. by means of their breed. MALONE.
or pelting farm;] See Vol. II. p. 40. n. 5. MALONE. -rollen parcbmeni bonds;] Alluding to the great sums raised by beans and other exactions, in this reign, upon the English subje&ts. Grey.
That England, that was wont to conquer others,
Green, BAGOT, Ross, and WILLOUGHBY'. York. The king is come : deal mildly with his youth ; For young hot colts, being rag'd, do rage the more.
Queen. How fares our noble uncle, Lancaster?
Gaunt. O, how that name befits my composition!
K. Rich. Can fick men play so nicely with their names ?
Gaunt. No, misery makes sport to mock itself:
Gaunt does not allude to any loans or exactions extorted by Richard, but to the circumstance of his having actually farmed out his royal realm, as he himself styles it. In the last scene of the first act he says,
“ And, for our coffers are grown somewhat light,
“ We are enforc'd to farm our royal realm." Mason. 7 Queen;] Shakspeare, as Mr. Walpole suggests to me, has deviated from historical truth in the introduction of Richard's queen as a woman in the present piece ; for Anne, his first wife, was dead before the play commerces, and Isabella, his second wife, was a child at the time of his death. MALONE.
8 - Aumerle,] was Edward, eldest son of Edmund Duke of York, whom he succeeded in the title. He was killed at Agincourt. WALPOL E.
9 Ross-] was William Lord Roos, (and so should be printed) of Hamlake, afterwards Lord Treasurer to Henry IV. WALPOLE,
· Willougbby] was William Lord Willoughby of Eresby, who afterwards married Joan, widow of Edmund Duke of York, WALPOLI.
K. Rich. Should dying men flatter with those that live?
Gaunt. Now, He that made me, knows I see thee ill ;
K. Rich. - Thou, a lunatick lean-witted fool,
2 Tby state of law is bend-Nave to ibe law;] The reasoning of Gaunt, I think, is this: By feitingibe royalties to farm ibou baff reduced akyself to a fare below sovereignty, ibiu art now no longer king but landlord of England, fubje&t to the same restraint and limitations as other landlords : by making eby condition a state of law, a condition upon which ibe common rules of law can operate, thou art become a bond-Nave to the law ; tbou baft made thyself amenable to laws from wbicb obou wert originally exempt. JOHNSON.
Mr. Heath explains the words fate of law somewhat differently: “ Thy royal estate, which is established by the law, is now in virtue of thy having leated it out, fubjected s.
Dar'it with thy frozen admonition
Gaunt. 0, spare me not, my brother Edward's son,
Toorop at once a roo-long witber'd Hower.] Shakspeare, I believe, took this idea from the figure of Time, who was represented as carrying a fickle as well as a frytbe. A fickle was anciently called a crook, and sometimes, as in the following instances, crooked may mean armed with a crook. So, in Kendall's Epigrams, 1577:
“ The regall king and crooked clowne,
« All one alike death driveth downe." Again, in the rooth fonnet of Shakspeare :
“ Give my love, fame, faster than time wastes life,
“ So thou prevent't his scythe and crooked knife." Again, in the 119th :
“ Love's oot Time's fool, though rofy lips and cheeks
“ Within his bending fickle's compass come.” It may be mentioned, however, that crooked is an epithet bestowed on age in the Tragedy of Locrine, 1595:
“ Now yield to death o'er-laid by crooked age." In that pafiage no allusion to a fcythe can be supposed. STEEVENS.
Shakspeare had probably two different but kindred ideas in his mind, ths bend of age and the fickle of time, which he confounded together.