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· rigid scrupulosity, and whose information is delivered with oracular veracity, deserves praise, and merits commendation.
Johnson. There is so surprising a display of intellect in this observation, that I shall forbear to question the truth of the position.
Rig is not, strictly, a row, but rather a go; in which sense it is used in another part of this play.
(m) You'd better hold your jawa The folio reads mag;, but I adopt jaw (from the quarto) as the more elegant, and as being more in the spirit of our author.
(n) Paws of Poeticè,-hands off.
6-Gab— i e. Mag, or jaw. See the “ Slang Dictionary.” St. Giles's Edition.
This word, powerful and expressive, has several significations : its present meaning is to turn nose, to divulge.
(9) That diddled me
The true reading I believe to be," that did me." To do a person is to cheat him.
Diddled is correct.
To do and to diddle mean the
(r)—Merry Andrew My friend, the glacier, is of opinion that Merry Andrew was a distant relation of Maid Marian's gentle* man-usher, or, as I conceive him to have been, her pa
ramour;* but a reference to the registers of the Heralds’ College, places it beyond all doubt that he was the person represented by the figure which I mistook for Tom the Piper, in my friend's painted window. " · If the public are not yet surfeited with the remarks of myself and the other ingenious commentators on the Old Vice, Maid Marian, the Morris Dancers, &c. &c.&c. I shall republish them in thirteen volumes quarto, with additional observations on Merry Andrew, Little Jack Horner, and the whole of the dramatis personæ of the Nursery mythology.
I have ventured to restore this from the old copies : in the later ones I find, what now ?'
. . . STEEVENS.
(t) Needs must
The remainder of this old proverb is preserved in the
* See Mr. Tollet's Essay on Fools' Caps, or, as he very gravely calls it, his Opinion concerning the Morris-Dancers upon his Window.-ANNOTATION Hen. IV. PART I.
pathetic ballad of the “ Two Louers theyr melancolie Partynge”-Dr. Humbug's Reliques, Vol. 94 :
“ To leve thee here, mie Alys dere,
“ Fulle sone ye tyme arryveth;
“ Needs must when the Devil dryveth.”
Rosencrantz means thus: “We (Guildenstern and myself) have no alternative; were we to refuse attendance upon your mere invitation, you could then compel it by the interposition of the royal authority.'