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I cannot reach fo high.
Luc. JUL. Let's fee your fong:-How now, minion? Luc. Keep tune there ftill, fo you will fing it out: And yet, methinks, I do not like this tune.
JUL. You do not?
Luc. No, madam; it is too fharp.
Luc. Nay, now you are too, flat,
And mar the concord with too harsh a defcant: *
Luc. Indeed, I bid the base for Proteus.*
too harsh a defcant:] Defcant is a term in mufic. See Sir John Hawkins's note on the first speech in K. Richard III.
STEEVENS. 3-but a mean, &c.] The mean is the tenor in mufic. So, in the enterlude of Mary Magdalen's Repentance, 1569:
"Utilitie can fing the bafe full cleane,
"And noble honour shall fing the meane." STEEVENS. 4 Indeed, I bid the bafe for Protheus.] The fpeaker here turns the allufion (which her miftrefs employed) from the bafe in mufick to a country exercise, Bid the bafe: in which fome purfue, and others are made prifoners. So that Lucetta would intend, by this, to fay, Indeed I take pains to make you a captive to Proteus's paffion. He uses the fame allufion in his Venus and Adonis ; "To bid the winds a base he now prepares,"
And in his Cymbeline he mentions the game:
Lads more like
"To run the country base."
Dr. Warburton is not quite accurate. The game was not called Bid the Bafe, but the Bafe. To bid the base means here, I believe, to challenge to a conteft. So, in our author's Venus and Adonis:
"To bid the wind a base he now prepares,
"And wh'er he run, or fly, they knew not whether." Again, in Hall's Chronicle, fol. 98. b. "The Queen marched from York to Wakefield, and bade base to the duke, even before his caftle." MALONE.
JUL. This babble fhall not henceforth trouble
Here is a coil with proteftation!
[Tears the letter. Go, get you gone; and let the papers lic: You would be fingering them, to anger me. Luc. She makes it ftrange; but fhe would be beft pleas'd
To be fo anger'd with another letter.
[Exit. JUL. Nay, would I were fo anger'd with the fame!
O hateful hands, to tear fuch loving words!
I throw thy name against the bruifing ftones,
And thus I fearch it with a fovereign kiss.
Mr. Malone's explanation of the verb-bid, is unquestionably juft. So, in one of the parts of K. Henry VI:
"Of force enough to bid his brother battle." STEEVENS. -written down?] To write down is ftill a provincial expreffion for to write. HENLEY.
Poor forlorn Proteus, paffionate Proteus,
He couples it to his complaining names:
Luc. Madam, dinner's ready, and your father stays.
JUL. Well, let us go.
Luc. What, fhall these papers lie like tell-tales here?
JUL. If you refpect them, beft to take them up. Luc. Nay, I was taken up for laying them down: Yet here they shall not lie, for catching cold."
JUL. I fee, you have a month's mind to them."
Yet here they shall not lie, for catching cold.] That is, as Mr. M. Mason obferves, left they should catch cold. This mode of expreffion (he adds) is not frequent in Shakspeare, but occurs in every play of Beaumont and Fletcher.
So, in The Captain:
"We'll have a bib, for fpoiling of your doublet." Again, in Love's Pilgrimage:
"Stir my horfe, for catching cold."
Again, in The Pilgrim:
"All her face patch'd, for discovery."
To these I fhall add another inftance from Barnabie Riche's Souldiers Wife to Britons Welfare, or Captaine Skill and Captaine Pill, 1604. p. 64: "-fuch other ill difpofed perfons, being once preffed, mult be kept with continuall guard, &c. for running away.'
I fee, you have a month's mind to them.] A month's mind was an anniversary in times of popery; or, as Mr. Ray calls it, a lefs folemnity directed by the will of the deceafed. There was also a year's mind, and a week's mind. See Proverbial Phrafes.
This appears from the interrogatories and obfervations against the clergy, in the year 1552. Inter. 7: "Whether there are any
Luc. Ay, madam, you may say what fights you fee;
I fee things too, although you judge I wink.
The fame. A Room in Antonio's House.
Enter ANTONIO and PANTHINO.
ANT. Tell me, Panthino, what fad talk was that, Wherewith my brother held you in the cloister? PAN. 'Twas of his nephew Proteus, your fon.
months' minds, and anniversaries? Strype's Memorials of the Reformation, Vol. II. p. 354.
"Was the month's mind of Sir William Laxton, who died the laft month (July 1556.) his hearse burning with wax, and the morrow mass celebrated, and a fermon preached," &c. Strype's Mem. Vol. III. p. 305. GREY.
A month's mind, in the ritual fenfe, fignifies not defire or inclination, but remembrance; yet I fuppofe this is the true original of the expreffion. JOHNSON.
In Hampshire, and other western counties, for "I can't remember it," they fay, "I can't mind it." BLACKSTONE.
Puttenham, in his Art of Poetry, 1589, chap. 24. fpeaking of Poetical Lamentations, fays, they were chiefly ufed " at the burials of the dead, alfo at month's minds, and longer times:" and in the churchwardens' accompts of St. Helen's in Abingdon, Berkshire, 1558, thefe month's minds, and the expences attending them, are frequently mentioned. Instead of month's minds, they are fometimes called month's monuments, and in the Injunctions of K. Edward VI. memories, Injunct. 21. By memories, fays Fuller, we understand the Obfequia for the dead, which some fay fucceeded in the place of the heathen Parentalia.
If this line was defigned for a verse, we should read-monther mind. So, in A Midsummer Night's Dream:
"Swifter than the moones fphere."
Both these are the Saxon genitive cafe. STEEVENS.
- what fad talk―] Sad is the fame as grave or ferious.
ANT. Why, what of him?
PAN. He wonder'd, that your lordship Would fuffer him to fpend his youth at home; While other men, of flender reputation, Put forth their fons to feek preferment out: Some, to the wars, to try their fortune there; Some, to discover islands far away; Some, to the ftudious universities. For any, or for all these exercises, He faid, that Proteus, your fon, was meet; And did request me, to impórtune you, To let him spend his time no more at home, Which would be great impeachment to his age, In having known no travel in his youth.
ANT. Nor need'ft thou much impórtune me to that Whereon this month I have been hammering.
So, in The Wife Woman of Hogfden, 1638:
"Marry, fir knight, I faw them in fad talk, "But to fay they were directly whispering," &c. Again, in Whetstone's Promos and Caffandra, 1578: "The king feigneth to talk fadly with fome of his counsel." STEEVENS.
—of flender reputation,] i. e, who are thought slightly of, are of little confequence. STEEVENS.
9 Some to difcover islands far away;] In Shakspeare's time, voyages for the discovery of the islands of America were much in vogue. And we find, in the journals of the travellers of that time, that the fons of noblemen, and of others of the beft families in England, went very frequently on these adventures. Such as the Fortefcues, Collitons, Thornhills, Farmers, Pickerings, Littletons, Willoughbys, Chefters, Hawleys, Bromleys, and others. To this prevailing fashion our poet frequently alludes, and not without high commendations of it. WARBURTON.
-great impeachment to his age,] Impeachment, as Mr. M. Mafon very juffly obferves, in this inftance fignifies reproach or imputation. So Demetrius fays to Helena in A Midsummer Night's Dream:
"You do impeach your modefty too much,
"To leave the city, and commit yourself
"Into the hands of one that loves you not." STEEVENS.