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The creatures that were mine; I fay, or chang'd


books containing directions for gardeners, published in the time of queen Elizabeth.

The prefent explanation may be countenanced by the following paffage in Warner's Albion's England, 1602, B. X. ch. 57:

"Who fuffreth none by might, by wealth or blood to overtopp, "Himfelf gives all preferment, and whom lifteth him doth lop." Again in our author's K. Richard II:

"Go thou, and, like an executioner,

"Cut off the heads of too-faft-growing sprays "That look too lofty in our commonwealth." Mr. Warton's note, however, on- "trash for his quick hunting," in the fecond act of Othello, leaves my interpretation of this paffage fomewhat difputable.

Mr. M. Mafon obferves that to trash for overtopping, "may mean to lop them, becaufe they did overtop, or in order to prevent them from overtopping. So Lucetta, in the second scene of The Two Gentlemen of Verona, fays


I was taken up for laying them down, "Yet here they fhall not lie, for catching cold." That is, left they fhould catch cold. See Mr. M. Mason's note on this paffage.

In another place (a note on Othella) Mr. M. Mafon obferves that Shakspeare had probably in view, when he wrote the passage before us," the manner in which Tarquin conveyed to Sextus his advice to deftroy the principal citizens of Gabii, by ftriking off, in the prefence of his meffengers, the heads of all the tallest poppies, as he walked with them in his garden." STEEVENS.

I think this phrafe means- "to correct for too much haughtinefs or overbearing." It is ufed by sportsmen in the North when they correct a dog for misbehaviour in purfuing the game. This explanation is warranted by the following paffage in Othello, Act II. fc. i:

"If this poor trafh of Venice, whom I trash
"For his quick hunting."

It was not till after I had made this remark, that I faw Mr. War-
ton's note on the above lines in Othello, which corroborates it.


A traf is a term ftill in ufe among hunters, to denote a piece of leather, couples, or any other weight faftened round the neck of a dog, when his fpeed is fuperior to the reft of the pack; i. e. when he over-tops them, when he hunts too quick. C.

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Or elfe new form'd them: having both the key 2 Of officer and office, fet all hearts3

To what tune pleas'd his ear; that now he was
The ivy, which had hid my princely trunk,

And fuck'd my verdure out on't.-Thou attend'st


I pray thee, mark me.


O good Sir, I do.

PRO. I thus neglecting worldly ends, all dedi


To clofenefs, and the bettering of my mind
With that, which, but by being fo retir'd,
O'er-priz'd all popular rate, in my false brother
Awak'd an evil nature: and my truft,
Like a good parent, did beget of him
A falfhood, in its contrary as great

As my trust was; which had, indeed, no limit,
A confidence fans bound. He being thus lorded,
Not only with what my revenue yielded,

both the key-] This is meant of a key for tuning the harpsichord, spinnet, or virginal; we call it now a tuning hammer. SIR J. HAWKINS.


3 Of officer and office, fet all hearts-] The old copy reads"all hearts th' ftate," but redundantly in regard to metre, and unneceffarily refpecting sense; for what hearts, except fuch as were th' ftate, could Alonso incline to his purposes?

I have followed the advice of Mr. Ritfon, who judiciously propofes to omit the words now ejected from the text. STEEVENS.

4 I pray thee, mark me.] In the old copy, these words are the beginning of Profpero's next fpeech; but, for the restoration of metre, I have changed their place. STEEVENS.


5 I thus neglecting worldly ends, all dedicate-] The old copy dedicated;" but we fhould read, as in the present text, dedicate." Thus in Measure for Measure:


"Prayers from fafting maids, whofe minds are dedicate
"To nothing temporal." RITSON.


Like a good parent, &c.] Alluding to the obfervation, that a father above the common rate of men has commonly a fon below it. Hersum filii noxæ. JOHNSON.

But what my power might elfe exact,—like one,
Who having, unto truth, by telling of it,
Made fuch a finner of his memory,

To credit his own lie," he did believe
He was the duke; out of the substitution,"
And executing the outward face of royalty,
With all prerogative:-Hence his ambition
Growing-Doft hear?

MIRA. Your tale, fir, would cure deafnefs.
PRO. To have no fcreen between this part he

And him he play'd it for, he needs will be
Abfolute Milan: Me, poor man!-my library
Was dukedom large enough; of temporal royalties
He thinks me now incapable: confederates
(So dry he was for fway) with the king of Naples,
To give him annual tribute, do him homage;
Subject his coronet to his crown, and bend
The dukedom, yet unbow'd, (alas, poor Milan!)
To most ignoble stooping.

-like one,

Who having, unto truth, by telling of it,
Made fuch a finner of his memory,

To credit his own lie.] There is, perhaps, no correlative, to which the word it can with grammatical propriety belong. Lie, however, feems to have been the correlative to which the poet meant to refer, however ungrammatically.


The old copy reads " into truth." The neceffary correction was made by Dr. Warburton. STEEVENS.

7 He was the duke; out of the fubftitution,] The old copy reads"He was indeed the duke. I have omitted the word indeed, for the fake of metre. The reader should place his emphasis on-was. STEEVENS.


8 (So dry he was for fway)] i. e. So thirty. The expreffion, I am told, is not uncommon in the midland counties. Thus in Leicester's Commonwealth: "against the defignments of the hafty Erle who thirfteth a kingdome with great intemperance." Again, in Troilus and Creffida:" His ambition is dry.' STEEVENS.

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O the heavens!

PRO. Mark his condition, and the event; then

tell me,

If this might be a brother.

I fhould fin
To think but nobly of my grandmother:
Good wombs have borne bad fons.

PRO. Now the condition. This king of Naples, being an enemy To me inveterate, hearkens my brother's fuit; Which was, that he in lieu o' the premises,Of homage, and I know not how much tribute,Should prefently extirpate me and mine Out of the dukedom; and confer fair Milan, With all the honours, on my brother: Whereon, A treacherous army levy'd, one midnight Fated to the purpose, did Antonio open The gates of Milan; and, i' the dead of darkness, The minifters for the purpose hurried thence Me, and thy crying felf.

Alack, for pity!
I, not rememb'ring how I cried out then,'
Will cry it o'er again; it is a hint,*

9 To think but nobly-] But, in this place, fignifies otherwife than. STEEVENS.

3 —in lieu o' the premifes, &c.] In lieu of, means here, in confideration of; an unusual acceptation of the word. So, in Fletcher's Prophetefs, the chorus, fpeaking of Drufilla, fays————

"But takes their oaths, in lieu of her affiftance,
"That they shall not prefume to touch their lives."

3-cried out-] Perhaps we should read-cried on't. STEEVENS. a hint,] Hint is fuggeftion. So, in the beginning fpeech of the fecond act:



our hint of woe "Is common



That wrings mine eyes.


Hear a little further, And then I'll bring thee to the present business Which now's upon us; without the which, this story

Were most impertinent.


That hour destroy us?

Wherefore did they not


Well demanded, wench; My tale provokes that question. Dear, they durft


(So dear the love my people bore me) nor fet
A mark fo bloody on the business; but
With colours fairer painted their foul ends.
In few, they hurried us aboard a bark;
Bore us fome leagues to fea; where they pre-

A rotten carcass of a boat, not rigg'd,
Nor tackle, fail, nor maft; the very rats
Inftinctively had quit it: there they hoift us,

A fimilar thought occurs in Antony and Cleopatra, A& V. sc. i: -it is a tidings


"To wash the eyes of kings." STEEVENS.

5 That wrings mine eyes.] i. e. fqueezes the water out of them. The old copy reads

"That wrings mine eyes to't."

To what? every reader will ask. I have therefore, by the advice of Dr. Farmer, omitted thefe words, which are unneceffary to the metre; hear, at the beginning of the next fpeech, being ufed as a diffyllable.

To wring, in the fenfe I contend for, occurs in the Merry Wives of Windfor, A&t I. fc. ii: "his cook, or his laundry, or his washer, and his wringer." STEEVENS.

6 -of a boat,] The old copy reads-of a butt. HENLEY. It was corrected by Mr. Rowe. MALONE.

7-had quit it:] Old copy-have quit it. Corrected by Mr. Rowe. MALONE,

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