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For what had he to do to chide at me?
Sil. Phebe, with all my heart.
I'll write it straight;
ACT IV ..... SCENE I.
Ros. They say, you are a melancholy fellow.
Ros. Those, that are in extremity of either, are abominable fellows; and betray themselves to every modern censure, worse than drunkards.
Jaq. Why, 'tis good to be sad and say nothing..
Jaq: I have neither the scholar's melancholy, which is emulation; nor the musician's, which is fantastical; nor the courtier's, which is proud; nor the soldier's, which is ambitious; nor the lawyer's, which is politick; nor the lady's, which is nice;3 nor the lover's, which is all these:
1 I have more cause -] 1, which seems to have been inadvertently omitted in the old copy, was inserted by the editor of the second folio. Malone.
2 — let me be better -] Be, which is wanting in the old copy, was added by the editor of the second folio. Malone.
3 — which is nice;] i. e. silly, trifling. So, in King Richard III:
“But the respects thereof are nice and trivial.” See a note on Romeo and Juliet, Act V, sc. ii. Steevens.
but it is a melancholy of mine own, compounded of many simples, extracted from many objects: and, indeed, the sundry contemplation of my travels, in which my often rumination wraps me, is a most humorous sadness. 4.
Ros. A traveller! By my faith, you have great reason to be sad: I fear, you have sold your own lands, to see other men's; then, to have seen much, and to have nothing, is to have rich eyes and poor hands. Jaq. Yes, I have gained my experience.
Enter ORLANDO. Ros. And your experience makes you sad: I had rather have a fool to make me merry, than experience to make me sad; and to travel for it too.
Orl. Good day, and happiness, dear Rosalind!
Jaq. Nay then, God be wi' you, an you talk in blank verse.
[Exit. Ros. Farewel, monsieur traveller: Look, you lisp, and wear strange suits; disable5 all the benefits of your own country; be out of love with your nativity, and almost chide God for making you that countenance you are; or I will scarce think you have swam in a gondola.- Why, how now, Orlando! where have you been
4- my often rumination wraps me, is a most humorous sadness.] The old copy reads-in a most, &c. Steevens.
The old copy has-by often. Corrected by the editor of the second folio. Perhaps we should rather read - and which, by often rumination, wraps me in a most humorous sadness.” Malone.
As this speech concludes with a sentence at once ungrammatical and obscure, I have changed a single letter in it; and instead of “ in a most humorous sadness," have ventured to read, " is a most humorous sadness.” Jaques first informs Rosalind what his melancholy was not; and naturally concludes by telling her what the quality of it is. To obtain a clear meaning, a less degree of violence cannot be employed. Steevens.
5- disable - ] i.e. undervalue. So afterwards :-“he disabled my judgment.” Steevens.
6 — swam in a gondola.] That is been at Venice, the seat at that time of all licentiousness, where the young English gentlemen wasted their fortunes, debased their morals, and sometimes lost their religion.
The fashion of travelling, which prevailed very much in our author's time, was considered by the wiser men as one of the
principal causes of corrupt manners. It was, therefore, gravely - censured by Ascham, in his Schoolmaster, and by Bishop Hall,
all this while? You a lover?-An you serve me such another trick, never come in my sight more.
Orl. My fair Rosalind, I come within an hour of my promise.
Ros. Break an hour's promise in love? He that will divide a minute into a thousand parts, and break but a part of the thousandth part of a minute in the affairs of love, it may be said of him, that Cupid hath clap'd him o'the shoulder, but I warrant him heart-whole.
Orl. Pardon me, dear Rosalind.
Ros. Nay, an you be so tardy, come no more in my sight; I had as lief be woo'd of a snail.
Orl. Of a snail?
Ros. Ay, of a snail; for though he comes slowly, he carries his house on his head; a better jointure, I think, than you can make a woman:7 Besides, he brings his destiny with him.
Orl. What's that?
Ros. Why, horns; which such as you are fain to be beholden to your wives for: but he comes armed in his fortune, and prevents the slander of his wife. .
Orl. Virtue is no horn-maker; and my Rosalind is virtuous.
Ros. And I am your Rosalind.
Cel. It pleases him to call you so; but he hath a Rosalind of a better leer than you.8
in his Quo vadis; and is here, and in other passages, ridiculed by Shakspeare. Fohnson.
7 than you can make a woman.] Old copy-you make a woman. Corrected by Sir T. Hanmer. Malone. 8 a Rosalind of a better leer than you. i. e. of a better fea. ture, complexion, or colour, than you. So, in P. Holland's Pliny, B. XXXI, c. ii, p. 403: “ In some places there is no other thing bred or growing, but brown and duskish, insomuch as not only the cattel is all of that lere, but also the corn on the ground," &c. The word seems to be derived from the Saxon Hleare, facies, frons, vultus. So it is used in Titus Andronicus, Act IV, sc. ii: “Here's a young lad fram'd of another leer.” Tollet.
In the notes on the Canterbury Tales of Chaucer, Vol. IV, p. 320, lere is supposed to mean skin. So, in Isumbras MSS. Cott. Cal. II, fol. 129:
“ His lady is wbite as whales bone,
“ So fair as blosme on tre.” Steevens.
Ros. Come, woo me, woo me; for now I am in a holiday humour, and like enough to consent:- What would you say to me now, an I were your very very Rosalind?
Orl. I would kiss, before I spoke.
Ros. Nay, you were better speak first; and when you were gravelled for lack of matter, you might take occasion to kiss. 9 Very good orators, when they are out, they will spit; and for lovers, lacking (God warn us!?) matter, the cleanliest shift is to kiss.
Orl. How if the kiss be denied?
Ros. Then she puts you to entreaty, and there begins new matter.
Orl. Who could be out, being before his beloved mistress?
Ros. Marry, that should you, if I were your mistress; or I should'think my honesty ranker' than my wit.
Orl. What, of my suit?
Ros. Not out of your apparel, and yet out of your suit. Am not I your Rosalind?
Orl. I take some joy to say you are, because I would be talking of her.
Ros. Well, in her person, I say I will not have you.
Ros. No, faith, die by attorney. The poor world is almost six thousand years old, and in all this time there was not any man died in his own person, videlicet, in a love-cause. Troilus had his brains dashed out with a Grecian club; yet he did what he could to die before; and he is one of the patterns of love. Leander, he would have lived many a fair year, though Hero had turned nun, if it had not been for a hot midsummer night: for, good youth, he went but forth to wash him in the Hel
9- and when you were gravelled for lack of matter, you might take occasion to kiss.] Thus also in Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy, edit. 1632, p. 511: "— and when he hath pumped his wittes dry, and can say no more, kissing and colling are never out of season.” Steevens.
1- (God warn us!)] If this exclamation (which occurs again in the quarto copies of A Midsummer Night's Dream) is not a corruption of God ward us,” i. e. defend us, it must mean, “summon us to himself.” So, in King Richard III:
" And sent to warn them to his royal presence.” Steevens. “ Thank my hmety rather"
lespont, and, being taken with the cramp, was drowncormers ed; and the foolish"chroniclers of that age? found it was
Hero of Sestos. But these are all lies; men have died from time to time, and worms have eaten them, but not for love.
Orl. I would not have my right Rosalind of this mind; for, I protest, her frown might kill me.
Ros. By this hand, it will not kill a fly: But come, now I will be your Rosalind in a more coming-on disposition; and ask me what you will I will grant it.
Orl. Then love me, Rosalind.
Orl. And wilt thou have me?
Ros. Why then, can one desire too much of a good thing ?--Come, sister, you shall be the priest, and marry us.-Give me your hand, Orlando:- What do you say, sister?
Orl. Pray thee, marry us.
Cel. Go to:- Will you, Orlando, have to wife this
Orl. I will.
2 chroniclers of that age - Sir T. Hanmer reads-coroners, by the advice, as Dr. Warburton hints, of some anonymous critick. Johnson. corrected pic nis'.'1632
Mr. Edwards proposes the same emendation, and supports it by a passage in Hamlet : “ The coroner hath sat on her, and finds it-Christian burial.” I believe, however, the old copy is right; though found is undoubtedly used in its forensick sense. Malone.
I am surprized that Sir Thomas Hanmer's just and ingenious amendment should not be adopted as soon as suggested. The allusion is evidently to a coroner's inquest, which Rosalind supposes to have sat upon the body of Leander, who was drowned in crossing the Hellespont, and that their verdict was, tbat Hero of Sestos was the cause of his death. The word found is the legal term on such occasions. We say, that a jury found it lunacy, or found it manslaughter; and the verdict is called the firuling of the jury. M. Mason.