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(Courage and hope both teaching him the practice).
For saying so, there 's gold:
Cap. Ay, madam, well; for I was bred and born,
Vio. Who governs here?
A noble duke, in nature,
What is his name? Cap.
Orsino. Vio. Orsino! I have heard my father name him: He was a bachelor then. Cap.
And so is now, Or was so very late: for but a month Ago I went from hence; and then 'twas fresh In murmur, (as, you know, what great ones do, The less will prattle of,) that he did seek The love of fair Olivia. Vio.
What's she? Cap. A virtuous maid, the daughter of a count That died some twelve months since; then leaving her In the protection of his son, her brother, Who shortly also died: for whose dear love, They say, she hath abjur'd the company And sight of men. Vio.
O, that I served that lady; 1
9 A noble duke, in nature,
As in name.] I know not whether the nobility of the name is comprised in duke, or in Orsino, which is, I think, the name of a great Italian family. Johnson. 1 They say, she hath ubjur'd the company
And sight of men,
They say she hath abjur'd the sight
0, that I served that lady; By the change I have made in the ordo verborum, the metre of three lines is regulated, and an anticlimax prevented. Steever's,
And might not be deliver'd to the world,
That were hard to compass;
Vio. There is a fair behaviour in thee, captain;
2. And might not be deliver'd to the world,] I wish I might not be made public to the world, with regard to the state of my birth and fortune, till I have gained a ripe opportunity for my design.
Viola seems to have formed a very deep design with very little premeditation: she is thrown by shipwreck on an unknown coast, hears that the prince is a bachelor, and resolves to supplant the lady whom he courts. Johnson.
- I'll serve this duke;] Viola is an excellent schemer, never at a loss; if she cannot serve the lady, she will serve the duke. Johnson.
4 Thou shalt present me as an eunuch to him,] This plan of Viola's was not pursued, as it would have been inconsistent with the plot of the play. She was presented to the duke as a page, but not as an eunuch. M. Mason.
The use of Evirati, in the same manner as at present, seems to have been well known at the time this play was written, about 1600. Burney.
When the practice of emasculation (which originated certainly in the east) was first adopted, solely for the purpose of improving the voice, I have not been able to learn. The first regular opera, as Dr. Burney observes to me, was performed at Florence in 1600: “ till about 1635, musical dramas were only performed occasionally in the palaces of princes, and consequently before that time eunuchs could not abound. The first eunuch that was suffered to sing in the Pope's chapel, was in the year 1600."
So early, however, as 1604, eunuchs are mentioned by J. Marston, in the Malcontent, one of our poet's contemporaries, as excelling in singing. Malov.
It may be worth thy pains; for I can sing,
Cap. Be you his eunuch, and your mute I 'll be: When my tongue blabs, then let mine eyes not see! Vio. I thank thee: Lead me on.
A Room in Olivia's House.
Enter, Sir Toby Belch, and MARIA.
Sir To. What a plague means my niece, to take the death of her brother thus? I am sure, care's an ene
my to life.
Mar. By by troth, Sir Toby, you must come in earlier o’nights; your cousin, ny lady, takes great exceptions to your ill hours.
Sir To. Why, let her except before excepted.
Mar. Ay, but you must confine yourself within the modest limits of order.
Sir To. Confine? I 'll confine myself no finer than I am: these clothes are good enough to drink in, and so be these boots too; an they be not, let them hang themselves in their own straps.
Mar. That quaffing and drinking will undo you: I heard my lady talk of it yesterday; and of a foolish knight, that you brought in one night here, to be her
Sir To. Who? Sir Andrew Ague-cheek?
5 That will allow me -] To allow is to approve. King Lear, Act II, sc. iv:
if your sweet sway
let her except beforë exceptel.] A ludicrous use of the formal law pirase. Farmer.
Sir To. He's as tall? a man as any 's in Illyria.
Mar. Ay, but he 'll have but a year in all these ducats; he 's a very fool, and a prodigal.
Sir To. Fye, that you 'll say so! he plays o’the violde-gambo, 8 and speaks three or four languages word for word without book, and hath all the good gifts of nature.
Mar. He hath, indeed,-almost natural:9 for, besides that he 's a fool, he's a great quarreller; and, but that he hath the gift of a coward to allay the gust he hath in quarrelling, 'tis thought among the prudent, he would quickly have the gift of a grave.
Sir To. By this hand they are scoundrels, and subtractors, that say so of him. Who are they?
Mar. They that add moreover, he's drunk nightly in your company.
Sir To. With drinking healths to my niece; I 'll drink to her, as long as there is a passage in my throat and drink in Illyria: He's a coward, and a coystril,
1 as tall a man - ] Tall means stout, courageous. So, in Wily Beguiled:
Ay, and he is a tall fellow, and a man of his hands too." Again : “ If he do not prove himself as tall a man as he.” Steedens.
viol-de-gambo,] The viol-de-gambo seems, in our author's time, to have been a very fashionable instrument. In The Return from Parnassus, 1606, it is mentioned, with its proper derivation:
“ Her viol-ile-gambo is her best content,
“ For twixt her legs she holds her instrument.” Collins. So, in the Induction to the Mal-content, 1606:
come sit between my legs here." “ No indeed, cousin; the audience will then take me for a viol-de-gambo, and think that you play upon me.”
In the old dramatic writers, frequent mention is made of a case of viols, consisting of a viol-de-gambo, the tenor and the treble.
See Sir John Hawkins's Hist. of Music, Vol. IV, p. 32, n. 338, wherein is a description of a case more properly termed a chest of viols. Steevens.
9 He hath indeed,--almost natural:] Mr. Upton proposes to regulate this passage differently:
“ He hath indeed, all, most natural. Malone.
that will not drink to my niece, till his brains turn o' the toe like a parish-top. What, wench? Castiliano vulgo;3 for here comes Sir Andrew Ague-face.
Enter Sir ANDREW AGUE-CHEEK, Sir And. Sir Toby Belch! how now, Sir Toby Belch?
a cojstril,] i. e. a coward cock. It may, however, be a keystril, or a bastard hawk; a kind of stone-hawk.
So, in drilen of Feversham, 1592:
as dear “ As ever cuystril bought so little sport.” Steevens. A coystril is a paltry groom, one only fit to carry arms, but not to use them. So in Holinshed's Description of England, Vol. I, p. 162: “ Costerels, or bearers of the armes of barons or knights." Vol. III, p. 248: “So that a knight with his esquire and coistrell with his two horses." P. 272: “ jackies and coisterels, are considered as the unwarlike attendants on an army.” So, again, in p. 127, and 217 of his History of Scotland. For its etymology, see Coustille and Coustillier in Cotgrave's Dictionary. Tollet.
- like a parish-top.] This is one of the customs now laid aside. A large top was formerly kept in every village, to be whipped in frosty weather, that the peasants might be kept warm by exercise, and out of mischief, while they could not work. The same comparison is brought forward in the Night Walker of Fletcher: “And dances like a town-top, and reels and hobbles.". Steevens.
“ To sleep like a town-top," is a proverbial expression. A top is said to sleep, when it turns round with great velocity, and makes a sinooth humming noise. Blackstone.
Castiliano vulgo;] We should read volto. In English, put on your Castilian countenance; that is, your grave, solemn looks. Warburton.
Castiliano vulgo;] I meet with the word Castilian and Castilians in several of the old comedies. It is difficult to assign any peculiar propriety to it, unless it was adopted immediately after the defeat of the Armada, and became a cant term capriciously expressive of jollity or contempt. The Host, in The Merry Wives of Windsor, calls Caius a Castilian-king Urinal; and in The Merry Devil of Edmonton, one of the characters says: Ha! my Castilian dialogues !” In an old comedy called Look about you, 1600, it is joined with another toper's exclamation,very frequent in Shakspeare:
“ And Rivo will he cry, and Castile too.” So again, in Marlowe's Few of Malta, 1633:
“ Hey, Rivo Castiliano, man 's a man.” Again, in The Stately Moral of the Three Lords of I.ondon, 1590 :
66 Three Cavaliero's Castilianos here,” &c.