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At thy good heart's oppression.
Doth add more grief to too much of mine own.
Soft, I will go along;
* Folio, made. † Quarto A, a sea raging with a lover's tears. 4 Why, such is love's transgression.] Such is the consequence of unskilful and mistaken kindness. JOHNSON.
5 Being PURG'D, a fire sparkling in lovers' eyes ;] The author may mean being purg'd of smoke, but it is perhaps a meaning never given to the word in any other place. I would rather read,Being urg'd, a fire sparkling- Being excited and inforced. To urge the fire is the technical term. JOHNSON.
Dr. Akenside in his Hymn to Cheerfulness, has the same expression :
"Haste, light the tapers, urge the fire, "And bid the joyless day retire." REED. Again, in Chapman's version of the 21st Iliad:
"And as a caldron, under put with store of fire"Bavins of sere wood urging it," &c. STEEVENs. 6 Being vex'd, &c.] As this line stands single, it is likely that the foregoing or following line that rhymed to it is lost.
It does not seem necessary to suppose any line lost. In the former speech about love's contrarieties, there are several lines which have no other to rhyme with them; as also in the following, about Rosaline's chastity. STEEvens.
BEN. Tell me in sadness', whom she is * you love.
But sadly tell me, who.
ROM. Bid a sick man in sadness make his will:Ah, word ill urg'd to one that is so ill !In sadness, cousin, I do love a woman.
BEN. I aim'd so neart, when I suppos'd you lov'd. ROM. A right good marks-man!-And she's fair I love.
BEN. A right fair mark, fair coz, is soonest hit. ROM. Well, in that hit, you miss: she'll not be hit
With Cupid's arrow, she hath Dian's wit;
That, when she dies, with beauty dies her store §'.
'Tell me in SADNESS,] That is, seriousness. JOHNSON.
* Folio, that is.
8 And, in strong proof, &c.] As this play was written in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, I cannot help regarding these speeches of Romeo as an oblique compliment to her majesty, who was not liable to be displeased at hearing her chastity praised after she was suspected to have lost it, or her beauty commended in the 67th year of her age, though she never possessed any when she was young. Her declaration that she would continue unmarried, increases the probability of the present supposition. STEEVENS. "-in strong proof-" In chastity of proof, as we say in armour of proof. JOHNSON.
9 She will not stay the SIEGE of LOVING terms,] So, in our author's Venus and Adonis :
+ Quarto A, right.
§ Quarto A, exit.
tell me gravely, tell me in
"Remove your siege from my unyielding heart;
"To love's alarm it will not ope the gate." MALONE.
with beauty dies her store.] Mr. Theobald reads-" With
her dies beauty's store; and is followed by the two succeeding
(I) BEN. Then she hath sworn, that she will still live chaste?
ROM. She hath, and in that sparing makes huge waste 2;
For beauty, starv'd with her severity,
editors. I have replaced the old reading, because I think it at least as plausible as the correction. She is rich, says he, in beauty, and only poor in being subject to the lot of humanity, that her store, or riches can be destroyed by death, who shall, by the same blow, put an end to beauty. JOHNSON.
Mr. Theobald's alteration may be countenanced by the following passage in Swetnam Arraign'd, a comedy, 1620:
Nature now shall boast no more
"Of the riches of her store;
Since, in this her chiefest prize, "All the stock of beauty dies."
Again, in the 14th Sonnet of Shakspeare:
Thy end is truth's and beauty's doom and date." Again, in Massinger's Virgin-Martyr:
with her dies
"The abstract of all sweetness that's in woman."
Yet perhaps the present reading may be right, and Romeo means to say, in his quaint jargon, That she is poor, because she leaves no part of her store behind her, as with her all beauty will die. M. MASON.
Words are sometimes shuffled out of their places at the press; but that they should be at once transposed and corrupted, is highly improbable. I have no doubt that the old copies are right. She is rich in beauty; and poor in this circumstance alone, that with her, beauty will expire; her store of wealth [which the poet has already said was the fairness of her person,] will not be transmitted to posterity, inasmuch as she will "lead her graces to the grave, and leave the world no copy." MALONE.
2 She hath, and in that SPARING makes huge WASTE ;] So, in our author's first Sonnet:
"And, tender churl, mak'st waste in niggarding."
3 For beauty, starv'd with her severity,
Cuts beauty off from all posterity.] So, in our author's third Sonnet:
"Or who is he so fond will be the tomb "Of his self-love, to stop posterity?” Again, in his Venus and Adonis:
She is too fair, too wise; wisely too fair *,
BEN. Be rul'd by me, forget to think of her. ROM. O, teach me how I should forget to think. BEN. By giving liberty unto thine eyes; Examine other beauties.
"Tis the way To call hers, exquisite, in question more": These happy masks', that kiss fair ladies' brows,
"What is thy body but a swallowing grave,
Seeming to bury that posterity,
"Which by the rights of time thou need'st must have!
wisely too fair, &c.] There is in her too much sanctimonious wisdom united with beauty, which induces her to continue chaste with the hopes of attaining heavenly bliss. MALONE.
None of the following speeches of this scene are in the first edition of 1597. POPE.
"And after supper long he questioned
"With modest Lucrece."
5 Do I LIVE DEAD,] So, Richard the Third :
now they kill me with a living death."
6 To call hers, exquisite, in question more:] That is, to call hers, which is exquisite, the more into my remembrance and contemplation. It is in this sense, and not in that of doubt, or dispute, that the word question is here used. HEATH.
More into talk; to make her unparalleled beauty more the subject of thought and conversation. Question means conversation. So, in the Rape of Lucrece :
"We stand here for an Epilogue.
"Ladies, your bounties first! the rest will follow;
"For women's favours are a leading alms :
And in many passages in our author's plays. MALONE.
7 THESE happy masks, &c.] i. e. the masks worn by female spectators of the play. So, in Beaumont and Fletcher's Beggar's Bush, Sc. ult. :
f you be pleas'd, look cheerly, throw your eyes "Out at your masks.”
Former editors print those instead of these, but without authority. STEEVENS.
These happy masks, I believe, means no more than the happy
Being black, put us in mind they hide the fair ;
masks. Such is Mr. sure, Act II. Sc. IV.
Enter CAPULET, PARIS, and Servant.
CAP. And Montague is bound1 as well as I,
PAR. Of honourable reckoning are you* both;
CAP. But saying o'er what I have said before;
* Quarto A, they.
Tyrwhitt's opinion. See Measure for Mea-
8 What doth her beauty SERVE,] i. e. what end does it answer? In modern language we say—" serve for." STEEvens.
9 thou canst not teach me to forget.]
"Of all afflictions taught a lover yet,
""Tis sure the hardest science, to forget."
1 AND Montague is bound-] This speech is not in the first quarto. That of 1599 has-But Montague.-In that of 1609, and the folio, But is omitted. The reading of the text is that of the undated quarto. MALONE.