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In King John, Act V. sc. v. first folio, are thefe lines:

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The English lords

By his perfuafion are again fallen off.”

The editor of the second folio, thinking, I fuppofe, that as these lords had not before deferted the French king, it was improper to say that they had again fallen off, fubftituted "are at last fallen off;" not perceiving that the meaning is, that these lords had gone back again to their own countrymen, whom they had before deserted.

In King Henry VIII. A& II. fc. ii. Norfolk, fpeaking of Wolfey, fays, "I'll venture one have at him.' This being misunderstood, is changed in the fecond copy to-" I'll venture one heave at him."

Julius Cæfar likewife furnishes various specimens of his ignorance of Shakspeare's language. The phrase, to bear hard, not being understood, instead of

"Caius Ligarius doth bear Cæfar hard." Firft Folio. we find in the second copy,

"Caius Ligarius doth bear Cæfar hatred."

and from the fame caufe the words dank, bleft, and hurtled, are difmiffed from the text, and more familiar words fubftituted in their room.1


"To walk unbraced, and fuck up the humours
"Of the dank morning." First Folio.
"Of the dark morning." Second Folio.
"We are bleft that Rome is rid of him."
"We are glad that Rome is rid of him."
"The noise of battle hurtled in the air."
"The noife of battle hurried in the air."

First Folio.
Second Folio.

Firft Folio.
Second Folio.

In like manner in the third A&t of Coriolanus, fc. ii. the ancient verb to owe, i. e. to poffefs, is discarded by this editor, and own fubftituted in its place.

In Antony and Cleopatra, we find in the original copy these lines:

I fay again, thy fpirit

"Is all afraid to govern thee near him,
"But he alway, 'tis noble."

Instead of reftoring the true word away, which was thus corruptly exhibited, the editor of the fe cond folio, without any regard to the context, altered another part of the line, and abfurdly printed"But he alway is noble.'

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In the fame play, Act I. fc. iii. Cleopatra fays to Charmian-" Quick and return;" for which the editor of the second folio, not knowing that quick was either used adverbially, or elliptically for Be quick, fubftitutes-" Quickly, and return."

In Timon of Athens, are thefe lines:

"And that unaptness made your minifter
"Thus to excuse yourself."

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i. e. and made that unaptnefs your minister to excuse yourself; or, in other words, availed yourself of that unaptnefs as an excufe for your own conduct. The words being inverted and put out of their natural order, the editor of the fecond folio fuppofed that unaptnefs, being placed first, must be the nominative cafe, and therefore reads

"And that unaptnefs made you minifter,
"Thus to excufe yourself."

In that play, from the fame ignorance, instead of Timon's exhortation to the thieves, to kill as

well as rob." Take wealth and lives together," we find in the second copy, " Take. wealth, and live together." And with equal ignorance and licentioufness this editor altered the epitaph on Timon, to render it what he thought metrical, by leaving out various words. In the original edition it appears as it does in Plutarch, and therefore we may be certain that the variations in the fecond copy were here, as in other places, all arbitrary and capricious.

Again, in the fame play, we have-


"I defil'd land."

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O, my good lord, the world is but a word," &c.

The editor not understanding either of these paffages, and fuppofing that I in the firft of them was ufed as a perfonal pronoun, (whereas it ftands according to the usage of that time for the affirmative particle, ay,) reads in the first line,

"I defy land;"

and exhibits the other line thus:

"O, my good lord, the world is but a world," &c.

Our author and the contemporary writers generally write wars, not war, &c. The editor of the fecond folio being unapprifed of this, reads in Antony and Cleopatra, Act III. fc. v: "Cæfar having made ufe of him in the war against Pompey,”—instead of wars, the reading of the original


The feventh scene of the fourth act of this play VOL. I.

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concludes with thefe words: "Defpatch.-Enobarbus !" Antony, who is the speaker, defires his attendant Eros to defpatch, and then pronounces the name Enobarbus, who had recently deferted him, and whose lofs he here laments. But there being no perfon on the scene but Eros, and the point being inadvertently omitted after the word dispatch, the editor of the fecond folio fuppofed that Enobarbus must have been an error of the prefs, and therefore reads:

"Dispatch, Eros."

In Troilus and Crefsida, Creffida fays,


Things won are done; joy's foul lies in the doing." i. e. the foul of joy lies, &c. So, "love's vifible foul," and "my foul of counfel;" expreffions likewife ufed by Shakspeare. Here alfo the editor of the fecond folio exhibits equal ignorance of his author; for instead of this eminently beautiful expreffion, he has given us—


Things won are done; the foul's joy lies in doing."

In King Richard III. Ratcliff, addreffing the lords at Pomfret, fays,

"Make hafte, the hour of death is expiate."

for which the editor of the fecond folio, alike ignorant of the poet's language and metre, has fubftituted,

"Make hafte, the hour of death is now expir'd."

So, in Romeo and Juliet:

"The earth hath swallow'd all my hopes but she.",

The word The being accidentally omitted in the first folio, the editor of the second supplied the defect by reading

"Earth hath up fwallow'd all my hopes but fhe."

Again, in the fame play; "I'll lay fourteen of my teeth, and yet, to my teen be it spoken, I have but four:" not understanding the word teen, he fubftituted teeth inftead of it.

Again, ibidem:

"Prick'd from the lazy finger of a maid—”

Man being corruptly printed inftead of maid in the firft folio, 1623, the editor of the fecond, who never examined a fingle quarto copy, corrected the error at random, by reading

2 That this editor never examined any of the quarto copies, is proved by the following inftances:

In Troilus and Creffida, we find in the first folio:

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Finding this nonfenfe, he printed" in unrespective place." In the quarto he would have found the true word-fieve.

Again, in the fame play, the following lines are thus corruptly exhibited :

"That all the Greeks begin to worship Ajax;

"Since things in motion begin to catch the eye,

"Than what not ftirs."

the words" begin to," being inadvertently repeated in the second line, by the compofitor's eye glancing on the line above. The editor of the fecond folio, instead of examining the quarto, where he would have found the true reading:

"Since things in motion fooner catch the eye." thought only of amending the metre, and printed the line thus ; "Since things in motion 'gin to catch the eye-" leaving the paffage nonsense, as he found it.

So, in Titus Andronicus:

"And let no comfort delight mine ear-"

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