But when I came to man's estate,

With hey, ho, the wind and the rain,
Gainst knave and thief men shut their gate,

For the rain it raineth every day.

But when I came, alas! to wive,

With hey, ho, the wind and the rain,
By swaggering could I never thrive,

For the rain it raineth every day.

But when I came unto my bed,

With hey, ho, the wind and the rain,
With t088-pote still had drunken head,

For the rain it raineth every day.

A great while ago the world begun,

With hey, ho, the wind and the rain,
But that's all one, our play is done,

And we N strive to please you every day. [Exit.

Sir Thomas Hanmer rightly reduces the subsequent words, beds and beads, to the singular number; and a little alteration is still wanting at the beginning of some of the stanzas.

Mr. Stesyens observes in a note at the end of Much Ado about Nothing, that the play had formerly passed under the name of Benedict and Beatrix. It seems to have been the court-fashion to alter the titles. A very ingenious lady, with whom i have the honour to be acquainted, Mrs. Askew of Queen’s-Square, has a fine copy of the second folio edition of Shakspeare, which formerly belonged to King Charles I, and was a present from him to his Master of the Revels, Sir Thomas Herbert. Sir Thomas has altered five titles in the list of the plays, to “ Benedick and Beatrice, - Pyramus and Thisby, -Rosalinde, -Mr. Paroles,-and Malvolio."

It is lamentable to see how far party and prejudice will carry the wisest men, even against their own practice and opinions. Milton, in his Einovox déses, censures King Charles for reading “one whom (says he) we well knew was the closet companion of his solitudes, William Shakspeare.Farmer.

I have followed the regulations proposed by Sir T. Hanmer and Dr. Farmer; and consequently, instead of knaves, thieves, beds, and heads, have printed “knave, thief,” &c.

Dr. Farmer might have observed, that the alterations of the titles are in his Majesty's own hand-writing, materially differing from Sir Thomas Herbert's, of which the same volume affords more than one specimen. I learn from another manuscript note

in it, that John Lowine acted King Henry VIII, and John Taylor the part of Hamlet. The book is now in my possession.

To the concluding remark of Dr. Farmer, may be added the following passage from An Appeal to all rational "Men concerning King Charles's Trial, by John Cooke, 1649: “Had he but studied scripture half so much as Ben Jonson or Sbakspeare, he might have learnt that when Amaziah was settled in the kingdom, he suddenly did justice upon those servants which killed his father Joash,” &c. With this quotation I was furnished by Mr. Malone.

A quarto volume of plays attributed to Shakspeare, with the cipher of King Charles Ii, on the back of it, is preserved in Mr. Garrick's collection.

Though we are well convinced that Shakspeare has written slight ballads for the sake of discriminating characters more strongly, or for other necessary purposes, in the course of his mixed dramas, it is scarce credible, that after he had cleared his stage, he should exhibit his Clown afresh, and with so poor a recommendation as this song, which is utterly unconnected with the subject of the preceding comedy. I do not therefore hesitate to call the nonsensical ditty before us, some buffoon actor's composition, which was accidentally tacked to the Prompter's copy of Twelfth-Night, having been casually subjoined to it for the diversion, or at the call, of the lowest order of spectators. In the year 1766, I saw the late Mr. Weston summoned out and obliged to sing Johnny Pringle and bis Pig, after the performance of Voltaire's Mahomet, at the Theatre Royal in Drury-Lane. Steevens.

The copy of the second folio of Shakspeare, which formerly belonged to King Charles, and mentioned in the preceding notes, is now in the library of his present Majesty, who has corrected a mistake of Dr. Farmer's, relative to Sir Thomas Herbert, inadvertently admitted by Mr. Steevens, but here omitted. Reed.

This play is in the graver part elegant and easy, and in some of the lighter scenes exquisitely humorous. Ague-cheek is drawn with great propriety, but his character is, in a great measure, that of natural fatuity, and is therefore not the propor prey of a satirist. The soliloquy of Malvolio is truly comic; he is betrayed to ridicule merely by his pride. The marriage of Olivia, and the succeeding perplexity, though well enough contrived to divert on the stage, wants credibility, and fails to produce the proper instruction required in the drama, as it exhibits no just picture of life. Johnson.


THE story is taken from Cinthio's Novels, Decad. 8, Novel 5.

Pope. We are sent to Cinthio for the plot of Measure for Measure, and Shakspeare's judgment hath been attacked for some deviations from him in the conduct of it, when probably all he knew of the matter was from Madam Isabella, in The Heptameron of Whetstone, Lond. 4to, 1582.-She reports, in the fourth dayes Exercise, the rare Historie of Promos and Cassandra. A mar. ginal note informs us, that Whetstone was the author of the Comedie on that subject; which likewise had probably fallen into the hands of Shakspeare.

Farmer. There is perhaps not one of Shakspeare's plays more darkened than this by the peculiarities of its author, and the unskilfulness of its editors, by distortions of phrase, or negligence of transcription. Johnson.

Dr. Johnson's remark is so just respecting the corruptions of this play, that I shall not attempt much reformation in its metre, which is too often rough, redundant, and irregular. Additions and omissions (however trifling) cannot be made without constant notice of them; and such notices, in the present instance, would so frequently occur, as to become equally tiresome to the commentator and the reader.

Shakspeare took the fable of this play from the Promos and Cassandra of George Whetstone, published in 1578. See Theobald's note at the end.

A hint, like a seed, is more or less prolific, according to the qualities of the soil on which it is thrown. This story, which in the hands of Whetstone produced little more than barren insi. pidity, under the culture of Shakspeare became fertile of entertainment. The curious reader will find that the old play of Promos and Cassandra exhibits an almost complete embryo of Measure for Measure; yet the hints on which it is formed are so slight, that it is nearly as impossible to detect them, as it is to .. point out in the acorn the future ramifications of the oak. Whetstone opens his play thus:

Act I..... Scene i. Promos, Mayor, Shirife, Sworde bearer: one with a bunche

of keyes: Phallax, Promos Man,
“ You officers which now in Julio staye,
so Know you your leadge, the King of Hungarie,
“ Sent me to Promos, to joyne with you in sway:
“ That styll we may to Fustice have an eye.
And now to show my rule and power at lardge,
• Attentivelie his letters patents heare:

Phallax, reade out my Soveraignes chardge.
Pbal. “ As you commaunde I wyll: give heedeful eare.

Phallax readeth the Kinges Letters Pattents, which

must be fayre written in parchment, with some great counterfeat zeale.

Pro. “ Loe, here you see what is our Soveraignes wyll,

“Loe, heare his wish, that right, not might, beare swaye :

Loe, heare his care, to weede from good the yll,
To scoorge the wights, good lawes that disobay.
“ Such zeale he beares, unto the common weale,
“ (How so he byds, the ignoraunt to save)

As he commaundes, the lewde doo rigor feele, &c. &c. Pro.“ Both swoorde and keies, unto my princes use,

“I do receyve, and gladlie take my chardge,
" It resteth now, for to reforme abuse,
“ We poynt a tyme of councell more at lardge,

“ To treate of which, a whyle we wyll depart. Al. speake. “ To worke your wyll, we yeelde a willing hart.

Exeunt." The reader will find the argument of G. Whetstone's Promos and Cassandra, at the end of this play. It is too bulky to be inserted here. See likewise the piece itself among Six old plays on which Sbakspeare founded, &c. published by S. Leacroft, Charing-cross. Steevens. Measure for Measure was, I believe, written in 1603.


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