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I mean not cuckold-mad;
But, sure, he is stark mad.
"Where is the thousand marks I gave thee, villain ?" 65
Luc. Quoth who?
Dro. E. Quoth my master:
"I know," quoth he, "no house, no wife, no mistress." So that my errand, due unto my tongue,
I thank him, I bare home upon my shoulders;
For, in conclusion, he did beat me there.
58, 59. not
stark mad] one line in Collier (ed. 2).
59. he is] he's Pope, reading I mean stark mad as one line; omitted by Hanmer. 61. a thousand] F 4; a hundred F 1; a 1000 Ff 2, 3. 64. home] Hanmer; omitted in Ff. 68. I know thy mistress not; mistress !] Seymour conj.; I know not thy mistress; out on thy mistress. F 1 I know no mistress; out upon thy mistress! Steevens conj. 71-74. As in Pope; prose in Ff. 72. errand] F 4; arrant Ff 1, 2, 3. 73. bare] bear Steevens (1773). my] thy F 2. 74. there] thence Capell conj.
68. I know... mistress] I think we are driven to adopt Seymour's simple conjecture, viz. the transposition of the negative from before to after "thy mistress." There are, apparently, some fifteen passages in this play in which the word mistress occurs, viz. I. ii. 46, 56, 63, 76, 83; 11. i. 57, 67 (twice), 68 (twice), 71; II. ii. 10, 18, III; I. ii. 29; IV. iii. 49; v. i. 168 (twice); and in no single instance
is the word accented on the second syllable. I believe that in all the numerous passages in the plays where the word is used it is uniformly accented on the first syllable. Marshall instances Pericles, II. vi. 18, to the contrary, but this passage is not Shakespeare's. It seems to me therefore simple nonsense to say that we must put the accent on the second syllable,
Adr. Go back again, thou slave, and fetch him home. 75 Dro. E. Go back again, and be new beaten home?
For God's sake, send some other messenger.
Adr. Back, slave, or I will break thy pate across.
Adr. Hence, prating peasant! fetch thy master home.
That like a football you do spurn me thus?
You spurn me hence, and he will spurn me hither:
Luc. Fie, how impatience loureth in your face!
Adr. His company must do his minions grace,
83. thus?] F 4; thus: Ff 1, 2, 3. 85. [Exit] omitted in F 1. loureth] lowreth Ff. 86. SCENE III. Pope.
80. a holy head] Craig says: "Perhaps 'holy' is 'broken,' full of holes (quibbling)."
82. round with] Johnson says: "He plays upon the word 'round,' which signified spherical applied to himself, and unrestrained or free in speech or action, spoken of his mistress. So the King in Hamlet [III. i. 191] bids the queen be round with her son." In this sense, see also Twelfth Night, II. iii. 102; Henry V. IV. i. 216; Hamlet, III. iv. 5; and Timon of Athens, II. ii. 8. Craig refers to North's Plutarch (ed. 1595), p. 874: "for the common people very round with him, and called him tyrant and murderer."
85. case me in leather]" Still alluding to a football [line 83], the bladder of which is always covered with leather" (Steevens).
87. minions] Cotgrave, "Minion: pleasing, kind, gentle." Skeat, Ety. Dict., suggests that the use of the word with a sinister meaning was probably borrowed from the Italian mignone, "a minion, a favorite, a dilling, a minikin, a darling" (Florio). But the transition was not difficult. The word also occurs in . i. 54, 59, IV. iv. 59 of this play, and frequently elsewhere, e.g. compare Dekker's Honest Whore, pt. ii. (Pearson, 1873, p. 136): "Say the world made thee Her minnion, that thy head lay in her lap."
88. starve for a merry look] Malone compares Sonnet xlvii.: "When that mine eye is famish'd for a look"; but there is an equally pointed reference in Sonnet lxxv.: And by-and-by clean starved for a look.”
From my poor cheek? then he hath wasted it:
A sunny look of his would soon repair:
98. defeatures] disfigurements, "alteration of features" (Steevens). Compare v. i. 300: "Strange defeatures in my face"; Venus and Adonis, 736: " pure perfection with impure defeature.'
98. fair] beauty, fairness. Very common in this sense in the poems and plays; e.g. in Midsummer-Night's Dream, 1. i. 182: "Demetrius loves your fair."
100. deer... pale] See the same play on these words in Venus and Adonis, 229 sqq. :—
Fondling, she saith, since I have
I'll be thy park and thou shalt be
IOI. stale] i.e. his pretended or ostensible wife,-the stalking horse under cover of which he pursues the game of his amours. This word has several meanings, which, however, do not seem to be capable of exact definition, and are more or less blended in meaning, the sense of something standing being more or less common
93. blunts] F 1; blots Ff 2, 3, 4.
to all. (1) A decoy or bait, a term in
Luc. Self-harming jealousy! fie, beat it hence!
Adr. Unfeeling fools can with such wrongs dispense.
every stale"; and The Tempest, IV. i. 187:" for stale to catch these thieves," where Steevens says it undoubtedly means a fraudulent bait. This may be the meaning in Dekker's Roaring Girl (Dodsley, vi. 77): “Did I for this lose all my friends, refuse Rich hopes and golden fortunes to be made A stale to a common whore." Compare also Lodge's Wounds of Civil War, III. i. (Dodsley, viii. 38): "These stales of fortune are the common plagues, That still mislead the thoughts of simple men." (2) A stalking-horse, a pretence, a mask; which seems to be the meaning in the present passage. Steevens says: "Here it seems to imply the same as stalking-horse, pretence. I am, says Adriana, but his pretended wife, the mask under which he covers his amours. So in [T. Hughes's] The Misfortunes of Arthur, 1587 [Collier's Five Old Plays and Hazlitt's Dodsley, iv.]:
the meaning of harlot has sometimes been assigned to the word, but it there means, I think, nothing more than a laughing-stock. (4) A cant term for a prostitute. See Much Ado About Nothing, II. ii. 25, "a contaminated stale"; and iv. i. 66, "a common stale." Dyce quotes the Faire Maide of Bristow, 1605:
"For what is she but a common
That loues thee for thy coine,
(5) The urine of horses. See Antony
"Was I then chose and wedded Chichester Hart's excellent notes on for his stale,
To looke and gape for his retire-
Puft back and flittering spread to
bully-stale, Castalion-King-Urinal, and Mock-water, in his edition of the Merry Wives of Windsor, 11. iii. 30, 34, 60, in the Arden Shakespeare, 1904. (6) The more modern use of the word seems to prevail in passages such as Merchant of Venice, II. v. 55: "A proverb never stale in thrifty mind"; Richard II. v. v. 104: "Patience is stale and I am weary of it "; 1 Henry IV. III. ii. 41: “So common-hackney'd in the eyes of men, So stale and cheap"; Antony and Cleopatra, II. ii. 240: "Age cannot wither her nor custom stale Her infinite variety and Cymbeline, 1. iv. 53: "Poor I am stale, a garment out of fashion." As Johnson put it, "not something offered to allure or attract, but something vitiated with use."
Or else what lets it but he would be here?
Will lose his beauty; yet the gold bides still
alone, alone Ff 2, 3, 4; alone, alas ! alone o' love Ed. conj.
107. alone alone] alone, a loue F 1; Hanmer; alone, O love, Capell conj.; he] she Staunton conj. IIO. lose] loose F 1. IIO, III. yet the and] Ff; and the . . . yet Theobald; and tho' yet Hanmer; yet the... though Heath conj.; yet though an Collier. III, 112. will Wear] Theobald x (Warburton); will,Where F1. 112, 113. So Ff 2, 3, 4; Rowe and Pope omit these two lines, putting a colon at will in line III. 112. and so no man] Theobald; and no man F 1; and e'en so, man Capell. hath] honoureth Kinnear conj. 113. By] F 1; But Theobald.
107. alone alone] The emphasis involved in the repetition of "alone" seems to me rather weak, though the repetition may be paralleled by III. ii. 44 in this play, "Far more, far more, to you do I decline"; v. i. 46, " much much different"; Lucrece, 795, “But I alone alone must sit and pine"; and King John, III. i. 170, "Yet I alone alone do me oppose Against the pope" (where, however, the need for emphasis is plain). It is just possible that the true reading may be o' love, i.e. of love, of all love; for love's sake; possibly with a reference to "keep fair quarter " in the next line. This preserves the Folio reading as nearly as possible. Compare" of all loves,' Midsummer-Night's Dream, 11. ii. 154; Merry Wives of Windsor, II. ii. 119; and Othello, III. i. 13, where it is the reading of the first Quarto, the Folio changing it to "for love's sake." And see particularly the Menaecmi, v. i. 46 (Appendix II.): "desire him of
all love to come over quickly to my house."
108. keep fair quarter] act fairly towards. Compare II. ii. 145: keep, then, fair league and truce with thy true bed." This is the full expression, which is a military term. Compare King John, v. v. 20: "Keep good quarter and good care to-night"; and Othello, III. iii. 180: "In quarter and in terms like bride and groom": in his note whereon in the Arden Shakespeare, 1904, Chichester Hart quotes Day's Blind Beggar, 1600 (Bullen, p. 87): "Every one to his court of guard and keep fair quarter." Craig quotes from Nash's Lenten Stuff (Works, McKerrow, 1905, vol. iii. p. 181): "Therefore I will keep fair quarter with thee and expostulate the matter more tamely."
109-113. I see
an explanation of this somewhat vexed and difficult passage, see Appendix I.