Pagina-afbeeldingen
PDF
ePub

mile. There parting with her, I gave her (be

Whom Indian pillage hath made fortunate ; sides her skin full drink) an English crown

And now he 'gins to loath his former state." to buy more drink; for, good wench, she was in

12 SCENE V.--"Like him that leaped into the a piteous heat: my kindness she requited with

custard." dropping some dozen of short curtsies, and bidding God bless the dancer. I bade her

Ben Jonson has a passage which well illus

trates this :adieu ; and to give her her due, she had a good ear, danced truly, and we parted friendly.”

“ He may perchance, in tail of a sheriff's dinner,

Skip with a rhyme on the table, from New-nothing,

And take his Almain-leap into a custard, 10 SCENE II.—Do you cry, 'O Lord, sir,' at Shall make my lady mayoress and her sisters your whipping ?" &c.

Laugh all their hoods over their shoulders."

Devil is an Ass, Act I., Scene l. The now vulgar expression “O Lord, sir," was for a long time the fashionable phrase, and The leaper into the custard was the city fool. has been ridiculed by other writers. The whip Gifford has a note on the above passage of Jon. ping of a domestic fool was not an uncommon

son, which we copy -"Our old dramatists occurrence. Sir Dudley Carleton writes to Mr. abound with pleasant allusions to the enormous Winwood, in 1604,—“There was great execu

size of their 'quaking custards,' which were tion done lately upon Stone, the fool, who was

served up at the city feasts, and with which well whipped in Bridewell for a blasphemous such gross fooleries were played. Thus Glap

thorne : speech, that there went sixty fools into Spain

• I'll write the city annals besides my lord admiral and his two sons. But

In metre, which shall far surpass Sir Guy he is now at liberty again, and for that unex- of Warwick's history, or John Stow's, upon pected release gives his lordship the praise of a

The custard, with the four-and-twenty nooks

At my lord mayor's feast.'-Wit in a Constable. very pitiful lord.”—(Memoirs of the Peers,' by Sir E. Brydges.)

Indeed, no common supply was required; for,

besides what the corporation (great devourers " SCENE III.—"The scarfs and the bannerels of custard) consumed on the spot, it appears about thee," dc.

that it was thought no breach of city manners Parolles, from this, and several passages of a

to send or take some of it home with them for similar nature, appears to have been intended the use of their ladies. In the excellent old for a great coxcomb in dress; and Lafeu here play quoted above, Clara twits her uncle with compares his trappings to the gaudy decorations this practice :of a pleasure-vessel, not "of too great a bur- • Nor shall you, sir, as 't is a frequent custom, then." Hall, in his 'Satires' (b. iv. 8. 6), has

'Cause you 're a worthy alderman of a ward,

Feed me with custard and perpetual white broth, described a soldier so scarfed :

Sent from the lord mayor's feast, and kept ten days, “ The sturdy ploughman doth the soldier see

Till a new dinner from the common-hall
All scarfed with pied colours to the knee,

Supply the large defect.!”

ACT III.

13 SCENE II.—“Smoky muskets.

arms which are known. In the next page is a

copy of part of an illumination in this volume. PORTABLE fire-arms, according to Sir Samuel The arquebus conveyed the match to the pan Meyrick, were first used by the Lucquese in : by a trigger. This was the first great improve1430. The hand-cannon, and the hand-gun,' ment in portable fire-arms. The following dewere little more than tubes of brass fitted on a scription of the musquet is extracted from the piece of wood, and fired with a match held in Penny Cyclopædia' (Art. Arms) :the hand. In a French translation of Quintus “The musquet was a Spanish invention. It Curtius, written in 1468, and preserved amongst is said to have first made its appearance at the

1 the Burney MSS. in the British Museum, we battle of Pavia, and to have contributed in an find the earliest representations of hand fire especial manner to decide the fortune of the (O

day. Its use, however, seems for a while to musquet, and a ferule at bottom to steady it in have been confined. It appears not to have the ground. On a march, when the piece was been generally adopted till the Duke of Alba shouldered, the rest was at first carried in the took upon himself the government of the Ne- right hand, and subsequently hung upon the therlands in 1567. M. de Strozzi, colonel-gene- wrist by means of a loop tied under its head. ral of the French infantry under Charles IX., A similar rest had been first used by the introduced it into France. The first Spanish mounted arquebusiers. In the time of Eliza musquets had straight stocks; the French beth, and long after, the English musqueteer was curved ones. Their form was that of the baque- a most encumbered soldier. He had, besides but, but so long and heavy that something of the unwieldy weapon itself, his coarse powder for support was required; and hence orignated the loading in a flask ; his fine powder for priming rest, a staff the height of a man's shoulder, with in a touch-box; his bullets in a leathern bag, a kind of fork of iron at the top to receive the the strings of which he had to draw to get at them; while in his hand was his burning appears that this species of hospitality to which match and his musquet-rest; and, when he bad Jack Drum, or John Drum, or Tom Drum (for discharged his piece, he had to draw his sword he is called by each name), was subjected, conin order to defend himself. Hence it became a sisted in abuse and beating. Holinshed, speakquestion for a long time, even among military ing of the hospitality of the Mayor of Dublin men, whether the bow did not deserve a pre- in 1551, says, “ No guest had ever a cold or forference over the musquet.”

[graphic]

bidding look from any part of his family; so

that his jester or any other officer durst not, for 1 SCENE VI.—"John Drum's entertainment."

both his ears, give the simplest man that re

sorted to his house Tom Drum his entertainThere is an old interlude, printed in 1601, ment, which is, to hale a man in by the head, called 'Jack Drum's Entertainment;' and it and thrust him out by both the shoulders."

ACT IV.

18 SCENE IV.—“Our waggon is prepar'd.

waggon. She is attended by a female, and in

the front of the cart is placed her fool. The IN 'Love's Labour's Lost, unquestionably an carriages in which Queen Elizabeth and her early play, Shakspere has used the term coach:

suite travelled are exhibited in Hoefnagel's “No drop but as a coach doth carry thee." print of Nonsuch House (1582), from which we In The Merry Wives of Windsor,' Mrs. give the representation of the carriage of ElizaQuickly tells us that “there has been knights, beth's attendants, the form of which is certainly and lords and gentlemen, with their coaches, more commodious than that of the Countess coach after coach, I warrant you.” The proba

of Rousillon. bility therefore is, that, in using the term waggon in the text, our poet meant a public vehicle. Certainly the early coaches were not much unlike waggons. Mr. Markland, in his interesting paper in the 'Archæologia,' 'On the early Use of Carriages in England' (vol. xx.), has given us a representation from an Ancient Flemish Chronicle of the fifteenth century, in the British Museum (Royal MSS. 16 F. III.), representing Emergard, the wife of Salvard, Lord of Rousillon, driven in a covered cart or

Stow, in his ‘Annals,' speaks of long waggons for passengers and commodities in 1564; and these, he says, were similar to those which travelled in the beginning of the next century to London from Canterbury and other large towns. These, it seems then, in Shak pere's time were called waggons, though they afterwards were occasionally named caravans. As late, how ever, as 1660, we find from Sir William Dugdale's Diary' that his daughter “went towards London in Coventre waggon."

[graphic]
[graphic]

ACT V.

16 SCENE I.-"Enter a gentle Astringer.”

ostringers,” says Markham, the great authority

on hawking, "which are the keepers of gossAn astringer is a falconer. They be called hawks or tercells." A "gentle astringer” probably meant the head of the king's bawking rank in his household. The grand falconer of establishment-not a menial, but an officer of | England is a noble.

[graphic][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

The costume of this play, for anything that foundation of the plot is either fanciful or leappears to the contrary, might be either of the gendary—the nearest possible period to that of age of Boccaccio or of Shakspere. The Floren- the writing of the play should be fixed upon as tines and the Siennois were continually at strife that of its action, as by so doing the best illusduring the middle ages, and the mention of a tration is obtained of the author's ideas and the “Duke of Austria” would, strictly, place its i manners of the age which he depicted. With date anterior to 1457, Ladislaus, the last Duke this view we should place the date of 'All 's of Austria, having died King of Hungary and Well that Ends Well' just previous to 1557, in Bohemia in that year; whilst the allusion to which year, on the 3rd of July, Sienna was Austria, as a power per se would drive the given to Cosmo de Medicis, Grand Duke of period of action still farther back amongst the Tuscany, by Philip of Spain, who had been dukes and margraves of the twelfth and thir- invested with its sovereignty by his father teenth centuries. It is our opinion, however, Charles V. The last war between the Floren. that in all cases where there is no positive vio- tines and the Siennois, and in which the former lence committed against bistory—where the were supported by the troops of the emperor,

[graphic][merged small]

and the latter by those of France, broke out in France at this time, a fashion which arose in 1552, and ended in 1555, the King of France from an accident that happened to Henry's at that period being Henry II., and the Duke father, Francis I., who, in a twelfth-night frolic, of Florence Cosmo de Medicis aforesaid. Our was hurt by the fall of a lighted firebrand on Illustrations are taken from Montfaucon's 'Mo- his head, and was compelled in consequence to narchie Française.'

have his hair shaved off. “The hair was worn very short by gentlemen

[graphic][merged small]
« VorigeDoorgaan »