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For flander lives upon fucceffion *;
For ever hous'd, where it once gets poffeffion.
E. Ant. You have prevail'd; I will depart in quiet,
Pretty and witty, wild, and, yet too, gentle;
For there's the houfe: that chain will I bestow
E. Ant. Do fo; this jeft fhall coft me fome expence. [Exeunt.
The House of Antipholis of Ephefus.
Enter Luciana, with Antipholis of Syracufe. Luc. And may it be, that you have quite forgot Ahufband's office? fhall, Antipholis, hate,
*For flander lives upon fucceffion.] The line apparently wants two fyllables: what they were cannot now be known. The line may be filled up according to the reader's fancy, as thus:
For lafhing flander lives upon
4 And, in defpight of mirth, -] Mr.Theobald does not know what to make of this; and, therefore,
has put wrath instead of mirth
Even in the fpring of love, thy love-fprings rot?
If you did wed my fifter for her wealth,
Then, for her wealth's fake, ufe her with more kindness;
Or if you like elfewhere, do it by ftealth;
Muffle your falfe love with fome fhew of blindness: Let not my fifter read it in your eye;
Be not thy tongue thy own fhame's orator; Look fweet, fpeak fair; become disloyalty: Apparel vice, like virtue's harbinger; Bear a fair prefence, tho' your heart be tainted Teach fin the carriage of a holy faint; Be fecret falfe: what need fhe be acquainted? What fimple thief brags of his own attaint? 'Tis double wrong, to truant with your bed, And let her read it in thy looks at board: Shame hath á baftard fame, well managed; Ill deeds are double with an evil word: Alas, poor women! make us but believe", Being compact of credit, that you love us; Tho' others have the arm, fhew us the fleeve : We in your motion turn, and you may move us.
An Hufband's Office? Shall, An
tipholis, Ev'n in the Spring of Love, thy
love-Springs rot? Shall love in Buildings grow jo ruinate?] This Paffage has hitherto labour'd under a double Corruption. What Conceit could our Editors have of Love in Buildings growing ruinate? Onr Poet meant no more than this. Shall thy Love-fprings rot, even in the Spring of Love? and fhall thy Love grow ruinous, ev'n while 'tis but building up? The next Corruption is by an acci
dent at Prefs, as I take it; This Scene for Fifty two Lines fucceffively is ftrictly in alternate Rhimes and this Measure is never broken, but in the Second and Fourth Lines of these two Couplets, 'Tis certain, I think, a Monofyllable dropt from the Tail of the Second Verfe; and I have ventur'd to fupply it by, I hope, a probable Conjecture.
6 Alas, poor Women! make us
not believe, &c.] From the whole Tenour of the Context it is evident that this Negative K z (not)
Then, gentle brother, get you in again;
Comfort my fifter, chear her, call her wife; 'Tis holy fport to be a little * vain,
When the sweet breath of flattery conquers ftrife.
Nor by what wonder you do hit on mine :)
Lefs in your knowledge and your grace you fhow not Than our earth's wonder, more than earth, divine. Teach me, dear creature, how to think and speak; Lay open to my earthy grofs conceit,
Smother'd in errors, feeble, fhallow, weak,
The folding meaning of your words' deceit;
Your weeping fifter is no wife of mine;
Far more, far more, to you do I decline.
Spread o'er the filver waves thy golden hairs,
(not,) got Place in the firft Copies intead of but. And these two Monofyllables have by Mistake reciprocally difpoffefs'd one
another in many other Paffages of our Author's Works. THEO.
*Vain is light of tongue, not
Luc. Gaze where you fhould, and that will clear your fight.
S. Ant. As good to wink, fweet love, as look on night.
Luc. Why call you me, love? call my fifter fo.
It is thyself, mine own felf's better part:
S. Ant. Call thyfelf fifter, fweet; for I mean thee:
Give me thy hand.
Luc. Oh, foft, Sir, hold you ftill;
I'll fetch my fifter, to get her good will. [Ex. Luciana.
Enter Dromio of Syracufe.
S. Ant. Why, how now, Dromio, where run'ft thou fo faft?
S. Dro. Do you know me, Sir? am I Dromio? am I your man? am I myself?
S. Ant. Thou art Dromio, thou art my man, thou art thyself.
S. Dro. I am an afs, I am a woman's man, and befides myself.
S. Ant. What woman's man? and how besides thyself? S. Dro Marry, Sir, befides myfelf, I am due to a woman; one that claims me, one that haunts me, one that will have me,
*My fole earth's heav'n, and heaven's claim.] When he calls the girl his only heaven on earth, he utters the common
cant of lovers. When he calls her his heaven's claim, I cannot un-, derftand him. Perhaps he means that which he afks of heaven. K 3
S. Ant. What claim lays fhe to thee?
S. Dro. Marry, Sir, fuch a claim as you would lay to your horfe; and fhe would have me as a beaft: not that, I being a beast, she would have me; but that fhe, being a very beaftly creature, lays claim to me. S. Ant. What is fhe?
S. Dro. A very reverent body; ay, fuch a one as a man may not speak of, without he fay, Sir reverence: I have but lean luck in the match; and yet is fhe a wond'rous fat marriage.
S. Ant. How doft thou mean, a fat marriage?
S. Dro. Marry, Sir, fhe's the kitchen wench, and all grease; and I know not what use to put her to, but to make a lamp of her, and run from her by her own light. I warrant, her rags, and the tallow in them, will burn a Lapland winter: if fhe lives, 'till doomsday, fhe'll burn a week longer than the whole world.
S. Ant. What complexion is fhe of?
S. Dro. Swatt, like my fhoe, but her face nothing like fo clean kept; for why? fhe fweats, a man may go over fhoes in the grime of it.
S. Ant. That's a fault, that water will mend.
S. Dro. No, Sir, 'tis in grain; Noah's flood could not do it.
What's her name?
S. Dro. Nell, Sir ;-but her name and three quarters (that is, an ell and three quarters) will not measure her from hip to hip.
7 S. Ant. What's her name? S. Dro. Nell, Sir; but her Name is three Quarters; that is, an Ell and three Quarters, &c.] This Paffage has hitherto lain as perplext and unintelligible, as it is now eaf, and truly humorous. If a Conundrum be reftor'd, in fetting it right, who can help it? There are enough befides in
our Author, and Ben Johnson, to countenance that current Vice of the Times when this Play appear'd. Nor is Mr. Pope, in the Chastity of his Tafte, to briftle up at me for the Revival of this Witticifm, fince I owe the Correction to the Sagacity of the ingenious Dr. Thirlby.