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Str. Y'are a baggage; the Slies are no rogues: 3 Look in the chronicles, we came in with Richard Conqueror. Therefore, paucas pallabris;+ let the world side:5 Sesa!
Host. You will not pay for the glasses you have burst?
To pheeze a man, is to beat him; lo give him a pheeze, is, to give him a knock. In The Chances, Antonio says of Don John, “ I felt him in my small guts; I am sure he has feaz'd me."
M. Masor. To touze or toaze had the same signification. See Florio's Italian Dictionary, 1598 : “ Arruffare. To touze, to tug, to bang, or rib-bafte one.” MALONE.
3_ no rogues :) That is, vagrants, no mean fellows, but gentlemen. Johnson.
One William Sly was a performer in the plays of Shakspeare, as appears from the list of comedians prefixed to the folio, 1623. This Sly is likewise mentioned in Heywood's Actor's Vindication, and the Induction to Marston's Malecontent. He was also among those to whom James I. granted a licence to act at the Globe theatre in 1603. STEVENS.
4 — paucas pallabris ;] Sly, as an ignorant fellow, is purposely made to aim at languages out of his knowledge, and knock the words out of joint. The Spaniards say, pocas palabras, i. e. few words: as they do likewise, Celja, i. e. be quiet.
TheoBALD. This is a burlesque on Hieronymo, which Theobald speaks of in a following note : “ What new device have they devised now? Pocas pallabras.” In the comedy of The Roaring Girl, 1611, a cut-purse makes use of the same words. Again, they appear in The Wife Woman of Hogfden, 1638, and in some others, but are always appropriated to the lowest characters. STÉEVENS.
5 let the world slide :) This expression is proverbial. It is used in Beaumont and Fletcher's Wit without Money :
will you go drink, “ And let the world slide, uncle?" Steevens. o you have burst?] To burst and to break were anciently fynonymous. Falstaff says, that “ John of Gaunt burf Shallow's fread for crowding in among the marshal's men.” Again, in Soliman and Perfeda :
“ God save you, fir, you have burf: your hin."
Slr. No, not a denier: Go by, says Jeronimy ;Go to thy cold bed, and warm thee.?
Again, in Dr. Philemon Holland's translation of Plutarch's Apophthegms, edit. 1603, p. 405. To braft and to burst have the same meaning. So, in All for Money, a tragedy by T. Lupton, 1574:
« If you forsake our father, for forrow he will braft." In the same piece, burst is used when it suited the rhyme. Again,
is used when it fuorrow he will brak
the old morality of
“ Though thou weep till thy hart to-brast." STEVENS. Burft is still used for broke in the North of England. See Dodsley's Collection of Old Plays, edit. 1780, Vol. XII. p. 375.
Reed. 7- Go by, says Jeronimy ;-Go to thy cold bed, and warm thee. ) The old copy reads-go by S Jeronimie — Steevens.
All the editions have coined a Saint here, for Sly to swear by. But the poet had no such intentions. The passage has particular humour in it, and must have been very pleasing at that time of day. But I must clear up a piece of stage history to make it understood. There is a fuitian old play, called Hieronymo; or The Spanish Tragedy: which I find was the common butt of raillery to all the poets in Shakspeare's time: and a passage, that appeared very ridiculous in that play, is here humoroully alluded to. Hieronymo, thinking himself injur'd, applies to the king for justice; but the courtiers, who did not desire his wrongs should be set in a true light, attempt to hinder him from an audience :
“ Hiero. Juftice! O! justice to Hieronymo.
“ Hiero. Not I:--Hieronymo, beware; go by, go by." So Sly here, not caring to be dun'd by the Hostess, cries to her in effect, “ Don't be troublesome, don't interrupt me, go by ;" and to fix the satire in his allusion, pleasantly calls her Jeronimo.
'THEOBALD. The first part of this tragedy is called Jeronimo. The Tinker therefore does not say Jeronimo as a mistake for Hieronymo.
Steevens. I believe the true reading is-Go by, says Jeronimo, and that the s was the beginning of the word says, which, by mistake, the printers did not complete. The quotation from the old play proves that it is Jeronimo himself that says, Go by. M. Mason.
I have not scrupled to place Mr. M. Mason's judicious correction in the text. STEEVENS.
Host. I know my remedy, I must go fetch the thirdborough.8
Surely Sly, who in a preceding speech is made to say Richard for William, paucas pallabris for pocas palabras, &c. may be allowed here to misquote a passage from the same play in which that scrap of Spanish is found, viz. The Spanish Tragedy. He afterwards introduces a faint in form.—The fimilitude, however Night, between Jeronimy and S. Jerome, who in Sly's dialect would be Jeremy, may be supposed the occasion of the blunder. He does not, I conceive, mean to address the Hostess by the name of Jeronimy, as Mr. Theobald supposed, but merely to quote a line from a popular play. Nym, Pistol, and many other of Shakspeare's low characters, quote scraps of plays with equal infidelity.
There are two passages in The Spanish Tragedy here alluded to. One quoted by Mr. Theobald, and this other:
" What outcry calls me from my naked bed?" Sly's making Jeronimy a saint is surely not more extravagant than his exhorting his Hostess to go to her cold bed to warm herfelf; or declaring that he will go to his cold bed for the same purpose; for perhaps, like Hieronymo, he here addresses himself.
In King Lear, Edgar, when he assumes the madman, utters the fame words that are here put in the mouth of the tinker : “ Humph; go to thy cold bed, and warm thee.” Malone 8 - I must go fetch the thirdborough.] The old copy rexis:
I must go fetch the headborough.
This corrupt reading had pass’d down through all the copies, and none of the editors pretended to guess at the poet's conceit. What an infipid, unmeaning reply does Sly make to his Hostess? How do shird, or fourth, or fifth borough relate to Headborongh? The author intended but a poor witticism, and even that is loft. The Hoftels would say, that she'd fetch a confiable : and this officer she calls by his other name, a Third-borough : and upon this term Sly founds the conundrum in his answer to her. Who does not perceive at 2 fingle glance, some conceit started by this certain correction? There is an attempt at wit, tolerable enough for a tinker, and one drunk too. Third-borough is a Saxon term fufficiently explained by the glossaries : and in our statute-books, no further back than the 28th year of Henry VIII. we find it used to signify a confiable.
THEOBALD. In the Personæ Dramatis to Ben Jonson's Tale of a Tub, the high-confiable, the petty-constable, the head-borough, and the bird borough, are enuinerated as distinct characters. It is difficult to say: precisely what the office of a third-borough was., STEEVEXS.
Sly. Third, or fourth, or fifth borough, I'll an. swer him by law: I'll not budge an inch, boy ; let him come, and kindly.
(Lies down on the ground, and falls asleep.'
Wind Horns. Enter a Lord from hunting, with
Huntsmen and Servants.
The office of thirdborough is known to all acquainted with the civil constitution of this country, to be co-extensive with that of the constable. Sir J. HAWKINS.
The office of Thirdborough is the same with that of Constable, except in places where there are both, in which case the former is litile more than the constable's affiftant. The headborough, petty canstable, and thirdborough, introduced by Ben Jonson in The Tale of a Tub, being all of different places, are but one and the fame officer under so many different names. In a book intitled The Constable's Guide, &c. 1771, it is said that “ there are in several counties of this realm other officers; that is, by other titles, but not much inferior to our conftables; as in Warwickshire a thirdborough.” The etymology of the word is uncertain. Ritson.
9 — falls asleep.] The fpurious play, already mentioned, begins thus :
“ Enter a Tapster, beating out of his doores Slie drunken. “ Taps. You whoreson drunken Nave, you had best be gone, « And empty your drunken panch somewhere else, - For in this house thou shalt not rest to night. . [Exit Tapster.
“ Slie. Tilly vally; by crisee Tapster lle fefe you anone : “ Fills the t'other pot, and all's paid for: looke you, “ I doe drink it of minc own inftigation.
Omne bere. • Heere Ile lie awhile : why Tapfter, I say, « Fill's a fresh cushen heere : “ Heigh ho, here's good warme lying. [He falls asleepe. « Enter a noble man and his men from hunting."
Steevens. 2 Brach Merriman,-the poor car is emboss'd,] Here, says Pope, brach signifies a degenerate hound: but Edwards explains it a hound in general.
And couple Clowder with the deep-mouth'd brach.
That the latter of these criticks is right, will appear from the use of the word brach, in Sir T. More's Comfort against Tribulation, Book III. ch. xxiv :-“ Here it must be known of some men that can skill of hunting, whether that we mistake not our terms, for then are we utterly alhamed as ye wott well.-And I am so cunning, that I cannot tell, whether among them a bitche be a bitche or no; but as I remember she is no bitch but a brache." The meaning of the latter part of the paragraph seems to be, “I am so little skilled in hunting, that I can hardly tell whether a bitch be a bitch or not; my judgement goes no further, than just to direct me to call either dog or bitch by their general nameHound.” I am aware that Spelman acquaints his reader, that brache was used in his days for a lurcher, and that Shakspeare himself has made it a dog of a particular species :
“ Mastiff, greyhound, mungrill grim,
King Lear, Act III. sc. v. ' But it is manifest from the passage of More just cited, that it was sometimes applied in a general sense, and may therefore be so understood in the passage before us; and it may be added, that brache appears to be used in the same sense by Beaumont and Fletcher :
“ A. Is that your brother?
Scornful Lady, A& I. sc. i. T. WARTON. I believe brach Merriman means only Merriman the brach. So in the old song:
“ Cow Crumback is a very good cow.” Brach however appears to have been a particular sort of hound. In an old metrical charter, granted by Edward the Confeffor to the hundred of Cholmer and Dancing, in Eflex, there are the two following lines :
« Four greyhounds & fix Bratches,
" For hare, fox, and wild-cattes." Merriman surely could not be designed for the name of a female of the canine species. STEEVENS.
It seems from the commentary of Ulitius upon Gratius, from Caius de Canibus Britannicis, from bracco, in Spelman's Gloffary, and from Markham's Country Contentments, that brache originally meant a bitch. Ulitius, p. 163, observes, that bitches have a fu. perior fagacity of nose :-“ fæminis (canibus] sagacitatis pluri.