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A CT V.
SCENE, before Leonato's House.
Enter Leonato and Antonio.
F you go on thus, you will kill yourself;
Leon. I pray thee, cease thy counsel,
Measure his woe the length and breadth of mine,
(17) If such a One will smile, and stroke his Beard, And hallow, wag, cry hem, when he should groan,] Mr. Rowe is the firft Authority that I can find for this Reading. But what is the Intention, or how are we to expound it? "If a Man will halloo, and whoop, and fidget, and wrig"gle about, to fhew a Pleasure when He should groan, This does not give much Decorum to the Sentiment. The old Quarto, and the ift and 2d Folio Editions all read,
And forrow, wagge, cry hem, &c.
We don't, indeed, get much by this Reading; tho', I flatter my self, by a flight Alteration it has led me to the true one, And Sorrow wage; cry, hem! when he should groan ; i. c. If such a One will combat with, ftrive against Sorrow, &c. Nor is this Word infrequent with our Author in these Significations,
And Sorrow wage; cry, hem! when he should groan;
But there is no fuch man; for, brother, men
Ant. Therein do men from children nothing differ..
Ant. Yet bend not all the harm upon your felf: Make those, that do offend you, fuffer too.
Leon. There thou speak'it reafon; nay, I will do fo. My foul doth tell me, Hero is bely'd ; And that shall Claudio know, fo fhall the Prince; And all of them, that thus difhonour her.
Enter Don Pedro, and Claudio.
Ant. Here comes the Prince and Claudio hastily.
Claud. Good day to both of you.
Are you so hafty now? well, all is one.
Pedro. Nay, do not quarrel with us, good old man.
Ant. If he could right himself with quarrelling, Some of us would lye low.
Claud. Who wrongs him?
Leon. Marry, thou doft wrong me, thou diffembler, thou!
Nay, never lay thy hand upon thy fword,
fear thee not.
Claud. Marry, befhrew my hand,
If it fhould give your age fuch cause of fear;
I fay, thou haft bely'd mine innocent child,
O, in a tomb where never scandal slept,
Leon. Thine, Claudio; thine, I fay.
Claud. Away, I will not have to do with you.
(18) Can't Thou so daffe me? -] This is a Country Word, Mr. Pope tells us, fignifying, daunt. It may be fo; but that is not the Expofition here: To daffe, and doffe are synonomous Terms, that mean, to put eff: which is the very Sense requir'd here, and what Leonato would reply, upon Claudio's faying, He would have nothing to do with him.
If thou kill'st me, boy, thou shalt kill a man.
Ant. Content your felf; God knows, I lov'd my
And fhe is dead, flander'd to death by villains,
Ant. Hold you content; what, man? I know them,
And what they weigh, even to the utmoft fcruple :
Leon. But, brother Anthony,
Ant. Come, 'tis no matter;
Do not you meddle, let me deal in this.
Pedro. Gentlemen both, we will not wake your patience.
My heart is forry for your daughter's death;
Leon. My lord, my lord
(19) And speak of half a dozen dangerous Words,] Thefe Editors are Perfons of unmatchable Indolence, that can't afford to add a fingle Letter to retrieve common Sense. To speak off, as I have reform'd the Text, is to throw out boldly, with ah. Oftentation of Bravery, &c. So in Twelfth-night;
A terrible Oath, with a swaggering Accent sharply twang'd off:
Pedro. I will not hear you.
Leon. No! come, brother, away, I will be heard.
Pedro. See, fee, here comes the man we went to feek.
Pedro: Welcome, Signior; you are almost come to part almost a fray.
Claud. We had like to have had our two nofes fnapt off with two old men without teeth.
Pedro. Leonato and his brother; what think'st thou ? had we fought, I doubt, we fhould have been too young for them.
Bene. In a falfe quarrel there is no true valour: I came to feek you both.
Claud. We have been up and down to feek thee; for we are high-proof melancholly, and would fain have it beaten away: wilt thou use thy wit?
Bene. It is in my fcabbard; fhall I draw it?
Claud. Never any did fo, though very many have been befide their wit. I will bid thee draw, as we do the minstrels; draw, to pleasure us.
Pedro. As I am an honeft man, he looks pale: art thou fick or angry?
Claud. What! courage, man: what tho' care kill'd a cat, thou haft mettle enough in thee to kill care. Bene. Sir, I fhall meet your wit in the career, if you charge it against me. I pray you, chufe another fubject.
Claud. Nay, then give him another ftaff; this laft was broke crofs.
Pedro. By this light, he changes more and more: I think, he be angry, indeed.
Claud. If he be, he knows how to turn 'his girdle.