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· Douglas on the 24th of May, 1329, in consequence, as Mr.
Hume supposes, of the treaty of Northampton. Now, Robert Bruce died on the 7th of June, 1329, just nine days after the date of the grant by Edward III. to Douglas; and thus the deJay ascribed to Bruce, when opposed to the regular performance by Edward III. could not have been a delay of more than nine days. 3. The claimants under the treaty of Northampton were not many; they were only two, Thomas lord Wake and Henry de Beaumont. 4.' There is no probability that the lands which they claimed had been bestowed on the followers of Bruce; on the contrary, there is every reason for supposing, that, in 1332, the lordship of Ledel, claimed by lord Wake, and the lands in Buchan, claimed by Henry de Beaumont, were still enjoyed by the crown : for, in 1342, David II. made a grant of the former to fir William Douglas, (see the charter in Douglas, Peerage, p. 489.] And Robert II. made a grant of the latter, as is uni. versally acknowledged, to Alexander Stewart, bis fourth son. But of any previous royal grant of either there is no vestige.'
Our author afterwards explains, at considerable length, and in a satisfactory manner, the delays of the Scottish regency on the subject of those reftitutions.
Subjoined to the Annals, and comprising the same period, viz. from 1306, to 1370, is a detail of miscellaneous occurrences, many of which are descriptive of the manners and customs of those times. This
is succeeded by an Appendix, consisting of the following articles :--Of the Manner of the Death of Marjory, daughter of Robert the First; Journal of the Campaign of Edward the Third ; of the Genealogy of the Family of Seton ; list of the Scottish Army at the Battle of Halidon ; whether Edward the Third put to Death the Son of Sir Alexander Seton ; List of the Persons of Distinction in the Scottish Army killed or made Prisoners at the Battle of Durham; Corrections and Additions to the first Volume of the Annals; the fame to the second volume; a chronological abridgement of events from the year 1306, to 1370.
The present volume of Annals, with the preceding, contain an accurate detail of the transactions of Scotland, during more than three hundred years, after the history of that nation emerged from the obscurity which involves its more early periods. The whole narrative is no less faithful than perspicuous, and is scrupulously supported either by the evidence of the best historians, or that of public records of the most respectable authority. The work abounds with annotations, which evince at the same time the great extent of the learned author's bittorical and antiquarian researches; and excite our regret that he has terminated a subject, in the prosecution of which he might, by his judicious investigations, haye thrown a stronger light on Lome later periods of history.
The Plays of William Shakspeare. In Ten Volumes. Wilb ibe
Corrections and Illustrations of various Commentators ; to which are added Notes by Samuel Johnson and George Steevens. The Second Edition, Revised and Augmented. 8vo. 31. jos. bound,
Bathurst. [Concluded from p. 135.] IN tracing the many valuable illustrations in this edition of
Shakspeare, we seem as if almcft rendered contemporary with the poet; so clearly are the manners, the customs, and the language of those times delineated by the investigation of the editor who has been repeatedly inentioned in our last Re. view. Paffages which had baffled the efforts of every former commentator appear now to be divested of all obscurity; and we have already seen their suppo ed meaning, in a variety of instances, confirmed by collating them with parallel examples in other writers, who lived in or about the age of Shakspeare,
We shall proceed to lay before our readers a note from each of our author's plays which we have not hitherto mentioned ; and have the pleasure to anticipate, on this subject, the total extinsion of those chimeras, which learning or ingenuity had substituted in the room of more certain evidence,
The following explanation in All's Well tbar Ends Well, iş happily supported by authority.
• Enter a gentle Afiringer.] Perhaps a gentle stranger, i. e. a stranger of gentle condition, a gentleman. The error of this conjecture which I have learned (once our edition first made its appearance, from an old book of Falconry, 1633,) should ieach diffidence to thofe who conceive the words which they do not understand, to be corruptions, `An ostringer or astringer is a falconer, and such a character was probable to be met with about a count which was famous for the love of that diversion. So, in Hamlet :
" We'll e'en to it like French falconers." A genıle afiringer is a gentleman falconer. The word is derived from oftercus or auftercus, a goshawk; and thus, says Cowell in his Law Dictionary: " We ulually call a falconer who keeps that kind of hawks, an aufringer.” Again, in the Book of Hawking, &c. b.l. no dare: “ Now bicause I spoke of offregiers. ye Niall understand that the ben called oftregiers that keep goisiaukes or tercels," &c,
Steevens.' The information contained in the next note is of an uncommon nature,
'--mistress Mall's picture ?-) The real name of the woman whom I suppole to have been meant by Sir Toby was Mary Frith. The appellation by which she was generally known, was Mall Gut.
w sc. She was at once an hermaphrodite, a prostitute, a bawd, a bully, a thief, a receiver of stolen goods, &c. &c. On the books yf the Stationers' Company, Auguit 1610, is entered-- A Booke called the Midde Prancks of Merry Mall of the Bankade, with her walks in man's apparel, and to what purpose. Written by John Day," Middleton and Deckir wore a comedy, of which h: is
the heroine. In this, they have given' a very ftattering representation of her, as they observe in their preface, that “it is the excellency of a writer to leave things better than he finds them.” The title of this piece is The Roaring Girl, or, Moll Cut-purse; as it hath been lately acted on the Fortune Stage, by the Prince his Players, 1611. The frontispiece to it contains a full length of her in man's clothes, smoaking tobacco. Nath. Field, in his Amends for Ladies, another comedy, 1639, gives the following character of her ;
-Hence lewd impudent
; “ Or man, or horse, as Centaurs old was feign’d.” A life of this woman was likewise published, 12mo, in 1662, with her portrait before it in a male habit ; an ape, a lion, and an eagle by her. As this extraordinary personage appears to have partook of both sexes, the curtain which Sir Toby mentions, would not have .been unnecessarily drawn before such a picture of her as miglio. have been exhibited in an age, of which neither too much delicacy or decency was the characteristick.' Steevens.
The meaning formerly expressed by the appellative in a pale fage of the Winter's Tale, is asce: tained beyond all question.
my aunts, Aunt appears to have been at this time a cant word for a bawd. In Middleton's comedy, called, A Trick to catch the Old One, 1616, is the following confirmation of its being used in that sense :" It was better bestow'd upon his uncle than one of his aunts, I need not fay bawd, for every one knows what aunt stands for in the last translation." Again, in Ram-alley, or Merry Tricks, 1611 :
I never knew
« Learnd me the common trick," • Again, in Decker's Honest Whore, 1635: “ I'll call you one of my aunts, fifter, that were as good as to call you arrant whore.”
Steevens.' The authority of the text is also satisfactorily established in the following note in Macbeth.
--- eaten of the insane root,] Mr. Theobald has a long and learned nore on these words; and, after much puzzling, he at length proves from Hector Boethius, that this root was a berry. Warburton.
-eaten of the insane root,] Shakespeare alludes to the qualities anciently ascribed to hemlock. So, in Greene's Never too late, 1616 : “ You gaz'd against te fun, and so blemished your right; or else you have calen of the roots
of hemlock, that makes mens' eyes conceit unseen obje£ls." Again, in Ben Jonson's Sejanus :
they lay that hold upon thy senses, " As thou bad snuft up hemlock.” Steevens, The collateral examples cited by the editor, in explanation of the following paffage in the play of King John, affords additional proof of what extraordinary light he has thrown on the text of Shakspeare, by his unwearied researches into the writings of those authors who were either contemporary with the poet, or lived at no great distance from that period.
• It lies as hightly on the back of him,
As great Alcides' shoes upon an ass :-) But why his
shoes in the naine of propriety ? For let Hercules and his shoes have been really as big as they were ever supposed to be, yet they (I mean the shoes) would not have been an overload for an ass. I am persuaded, I have retrieved the true reading; and let us observe the juitness of the comparison now. Faulconbridge in his resentment would say this to Austria: “ That lion's skin, which ny great father king Richard once wore, looks as uncouthJy on thy back, 'as that other noble hide, which was borne by Hercules, would look on the back of an ass.” A double allusion was intended ; first, to the fable of the ass in the lion's skin ; then Richard I. is finely set in competition with Alcides, as Auftria is satirically coupled with the ass. Theobald. Mr. Theobald had the art of making the most of his discoveries.
Johnson. · The shoes of Hercules are niore than once introduced in the old comedies on much the same occasions. So, in The Idle of Gulls, by J. Day, 1606 :
-are as fit, as Hercules's shoe for the foot of a pigmy." Again, in Greene's Epistle Dedicatory to Perimedes the Blackfinith, 1588: “ -and fo least I mould shape Hercules' shoe for a child's foot, I commend your worthip to the Almighty." Again, in Green's Penelope's Web, 1601: I will not make a long harvest for a small crop, nor go about to pull a Hercules' shoe on Achilles' foot." Again, ibid. “ Hercules fboe will never serve a child's foot." Again, in: Stephen Gosson's, School of Abuse, 1579 : to draw the lyon's skin upon Ælop's afie, or Hercules' moes on a child's feete." Steevens.
Philological authority and examples are combined in the subsequent annotation on a passage in Kirg Richard II.
• and baffled here;] Bafled in this place means treated with the greatest ignominy imaginable. So, Holinthed, vol. III. p. 827, and 1218, or annis 1513, and 1570, explains it :" Bafulling, says he, is a disgrace among the Scots, and it is used when a man is openlie perjured, and then they make of him an image painted, reversed, witli bis heels upward, with his name, woondering, crieing, and blowing out of him with horns.” Spenser's Faery Queen, b. v. c. 3. lt. 37; and b. vi. C. 7. It. 27. has the word in the same fignification. Toliet. • The same expression occurs again in Twelfth Night, sc. ult.
“ Alas, poor fooi! how have they baffled thee?" Again, in K. Hen, IV. P. I. act 1. sc. ii: -an i do not, call me villain, and bofle me."
• Again, in The London Prodigal, 1605, “
-chil be abaffelled up and down the town, for a mefel." i.e. for a beggar, or rather a leper.' Steevens.
A supposed general denomination is evinced, in the following note, in the First Part of K. Henry IV. to be restri&tively applied to a particular person.
"maid Marian may be &c.] Maid Marian is a man dressed like a woman, who attends the dancers of the morris. Johnson.
• In the ancient Songs of Robin Hood frequent mention is made of maid Marian, who appears to have been his concubine. I could quote many passages in my old MS. to this purpose, but thall
produce only one :
" Good Robin Hood was living then,
“ Which now is quite forgot,
" And so was fayre maid Marian, &c." Percy,
" Next ’tis agreed (if thereto shee agree)
“ Mat. I am contented; read on, little John:
“ Henceforth let me be nam'd maide Marian.”
Shakespeare speaks of maid Marian in her degraded state, when she was represented by a strunipet or a clown.
• See Figure 2 in the plate at the end of this play, with Mr. Tol. let's observations on it.' Steevens.
The authority of the old copy of Shakspeare is restored by the present editor, in the subsequent passage in the Second Part of K. Henry IV.
!--sippery clouds,] The modern editors read frowds. The old copyin the pippery clouds; but I know not what advantage is gained by the alteration, for shrowds had anciently the same meaning as clouds. I could bring many instances of this use of the word from Drayton. So, in his Miracles of Moses :
" And the stern thunder from the airy sorowds,
" To the sad world, in fear and horror spake.” Again, in Ben Jonson's Poer on Inigo Jones :
“ And peering forth of Iris in the forowds.”
I have seen
“ To be exalted with the threatning clouds."