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Printed for, and under the Direction of,

JOHN BELL, British Library, STRAND, Bookseller to His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales.

MDCCLXXXVII.

ANNOTATIONS

UPON

MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM.

ACT 1.

Line 6.
LONG

WITHERING OUT a young man's revenue.] So, in Chapman's Translation of the 4th book of Homer : 66-there the goodly plant lies withering out his grace."

STEEVENS. 10. New bent in heaven,–] The old copies read Now bent.--Mr. Rowe made the change. MALONE. 28. --witch'd-] The old copies read bewitch'd.

JOHNSON, 34. -gawds---] i, e. baubles, toys, trifles. Our author has the word frequently. The Rev. Mr. Lambe, in his notes on the ancient metrical history of the Battle of Flodden, observes, that a gauid is a child's toy, and that the children in the North call their playthings gowdys, and their baby-house a gowdy-house.

STEEVENS.

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45. Or to her death: according to our law,] By a law of Solon's, parents had an absolute power of life and death over their children. So it suited the poet's purpose well enough, to suppose the Athenians had it before. Or, perhaps, he neither thought nor knew any thing of the matter.

WARBURTON. 67.

-to die the death ---] See note on Measăre for Measure, act ii. line 732.

STEEvens. 70. Know of your youth, -] Bring your youth to the question. Consider your youth. JOHNSON. 73. For aye-] i. e. for ever.

STEEVENS. 78. But earthlier happy is the rose distill’d,] Thus all the copies : yet earthlier is so harsh a word, and carthlier happy, for happier earthly, a mode of speech so unusual, that I wonder none of the editors have proposed earlier happy.

JOHNSON It has since been observed, that Mr. Pope did propose earlier. We might read, earthly happier.

STEEVENS. This is a thought in which Shakspere seems to have much delighted. We meet with it more than once in his Sonnets. See 5th, 6th, and 54th Sonnets.

MALONE. -to whose unwish'd yoke] Thus the modern editors; the particle to is wanting in the old copies.

STÉEVENS. 96. You have her father's love, Demetrius;

Let me have Hermia's; do you marry him.] I suspect that Shakspére wrote:

" Let

83.

112.

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« Let me have Hermia ; do you marry him."

TYRWHITT. -spotted- -] As spotless is innocent, so spotted is wicked.

Johnson. 133. Beteem them~]Give them, bestow upon them. The word is used by Spenser:

« So would I, said th' enchanter, glad and fain Beteen to you his sword, you to defend."

Faery Queen,

JOHNSON. Again, in The Case is Altered. How? Ask Dalio and Milo, 1605:

“ I could beteeme her a better match." But I rather think that to beteem in this place signifies (as in the northern counties) to pour out ; from tommer, Danish.

STEEVENS. 136. The course of true love, &c.] This passage seems to have been imitated by Milton.

Paradise Lost, B. X.-896.

MALONE. 145. The old editions read momentany, which is the old and proper word. The modern editors, momentary.

JOHNSON The first folio has not momentany but momentary.

MALONE. that short, momentany rage”.

is an expression of Dryden.

HENLEY. 147. Brief as the lightning in the colly'd night,

That, in a spleen, unfolds both heaven and
earth,
B

And

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