Part 9 out of 10
A little longer yet your patience lend,
That in your friendly censures you may see
What the infernal synod do decree;
And after judge, if we deserve to name
This play of ours, _The devil and his dame_.
_It thunders and lightneth. Enter_ PLUTO, MINOS,
AEACUS, RHADAMANTHUS, _with Fury bringing in_
PLU. Minos, is this the day he should return,
And bring us tidings of his twelvemonth spent!
_Enter_ BELPHEGOR, _like a devil, with horns
on his head, and_ AKERCOCK.
MIN. It is, great king, and here Belphegor comes.
PLU. His visage is more ghastly than 'twas wont.
What ornaments are those upon his head?
BEL. Hell, I salute thee! now I feel myself
Rid of a thousand torments. O vile earth,
Worse for us devils than hell itself for men!
Dread Pluto, hear thy subject's just complaint
[BELPHEGOR _kneeleth to_ PLUTO.
Proceeding from the anguish of my soul.
O, never send me more into the earth!
For there dwells dread and horror more than here.
PLU. Stand forth, Belphegor, and report the truth
Of all things have betide thee in the world.
BEL. When first, great king, I came into the earth,
I chose a wife both young and beautiful,
The only daughter to a noble earl;
But when the night came that I should her bed,
I found another laid there in her stead:
And in the morning when I found the change,
Though I denied her, I was forc'd to take her.
With her I liv'd in such a mild estate,
Us'd her still kindly, lov'd her tenderly;
Which she requited with such light regard,
So loose demeanour, and dishonest life,
That she was each man's whore, that was my wife.
No hours but gallants flock'd unto my house,
Such as she fancied for her loathsome lust,
With whom, before my face, she did not spare
To play the strumpet. Yea, and more than this,
She made my house a stew for all resorts,
Herself a bawd to others' filthiness:
Which, if I once began but to reprove,
O, then, her tongue was worse than all the rest!
No ears with patience would endure to hear her,
Nor would she ever cease, till I submit[ted]:
And then she'd speak me fair, but wish me dead.
A hundred drifts she laid to cut me off,
Still drawing me to dangers of my life.
And now, my twelvemonth being near expir'd,
She poison'd me; and least that means should fail,
She entic'd a captain to've murdered me.
In brief, whatever tongue can tell of ill,
All that may well be spoken of my dame.
AKER. Poor Akercock was fain to fly her sight,
For never an hour but she laid on me;
Her tongue and fist walked all so nimbly.
PLU. Doth then, Belphegor, this report of thine
Against all women hold in general?
BEL. Not so, great prince: for, as 'mongst other creatures,
Under that sex are mingled good and bad.
There are some women virtuous, chaste, and true;
And to all those the devil will give their due.
But, O, my dame, born for a scourge to man!
For no mortality [I] would endure that,
Which she a thousand times hath offered me.
PLU. But what new shapes are those upon thy head?
BEL. These are the ancient arms of cuckoldry,
And these my dame hath kindly left to me;
For which Belphegor shall be here derided,
Unless your great infernal majesty
Do solemnly proclaim, no devil shall scorn
Hereafter still to wear the goodly horn.
PLU. This for thy service I will grant thee freely:
All devils shall, as thou dost, like horns wear,
And none shall scorn Belphegor's arms to bear.
And now, Malbecco, hear thy latest doom.
Since that thy first reports are justified
By after-proofs, and women's looseness known,
One plague more will I send upon the earth!
Thou shalt assume a light and fiery shape,
And so for ever live within the world;
Dive into women's thoughts, into men's hearts;
Raise up false rumours and suspicious fears;
Put strange inventions into each man's mind;
And for these actions they shall always call thee
By no name else but fearful Jealousy.
Go, Jealousy, begone; thou hast thy charge;
Go, range about the world that is so large.
And now, for joy Belphegor is return'd,
The furies shall their tortures cast away,
And all hell o'er we'll make it holiday.
[_It thundereth and lightneth. Exeunt omnes_.
 Cooper's "Athenae Cantabrig," ii. 306.
 Nash seems to have boasted of his birth earlier than the date of his
"Lenten Stuff," for G. Harvey, in his "Four Letters," &c., 1592, says:
"I have enquired what speciall cause the pennyless gentleman hath to
brag of his birth, which giveth the woeful poverty good leave, even with
his Stentor's voice, and in his rattling terms, to revive the pitiful
history of Lazarillo de Thormes."
 Not of Hertfordshire, a mistake originally made by Shiel in his
"Lives of the Poets," thence copied into Berkenhout's "Biographia
Literaria," and subsequently into the last edition of the "Biographia
Dramatica." [It is copied also by the editor of a reprint of Nash and
Marlowe's "Dido," 1825.]
 Sig. Q 4.
 "For coming from Venice the last summer, and taking Bergamo in my
way homeward to England, it was my hap, sojourning there some four or
five days, to light in fellowship with that famous _Francattip_
Harlequin, who, perceiving me to be an Englishman by my habit and
speech, asked me many particulars of the order and manner of our plays,
which he termed by the name of representations. Amongst other talk he
enquired of me if I knew any such _Parabolano_ here in London as Signior
_Chiarlatano_ Kempino. 'Very well,' quoth I, 'and have been often in his
company.' He hearing me say so began to embrace me anew, and offered me
all the courtesy he could for his sake, saying although he knew him not,
yet for the report he had heard of his pleasance, he could not but be in
love with his perfections being absent."
Many of Nash's works furnish evidence that he was well acquainted with
Italian poets and writers. Some allusions and translations are pointed
out in the notes to the present reprint of "Summer's Last Will and
 It is called "A counter-cuff to Martin junior," &c.
 It may be doubted whether Greene and Nash did not contribute to
bring the occupation of a _ropemaker_ into discredit. Marston, in his
"_Parasitaster_," printed in 1606, for some reason or other, speaks of
it in terms of great contempt.
"Then must you sit there thrust and contemned, bareheaded to a grogram
scribe, ready to start up at the door creaking, prest to get in, with
your leave sir, to some surly groom, _the third son of a ropemaker_."
 There is a MS. poem in the Brit. Mus. (Bibl. Sloan. 1489) entitled
"The Trimming of Tom Nash," written in metre-ballad verse, but it does
not relate to our author, though written probably not very long after
1600, and though the title is evidently borrowed from the tract by
Gabriel Harvey. Near the opening it contains some notices of romances
and works of the time, which may be worth quoting--
"And he as many authors read
As ere Don Quixote had.
And some of them could say by heart
To make the hearers glad.
"The valiant deeds of Knight o'th' Sun
And Rosicleer so tall;
And Palmerin of England too
And Amadis of Gaul.
"Bevis of Hampton he had read
And Guy of Warwick stout;
Huon of Bordeaux, though so long,
Yet he had read him out.
"The Hundred Tales and Scoggin's Jests
And Arthur of the Round Table,
The twelve Wise men of Gotham too
And Ballads innumerable."
 It is unnecessary to quote the passage, as the whole tract is
reprinted both in the old and new editions of the "Harleian Miscellany."
In his "Almond for a Parrot," Nash adverts to the ticklishness of the
times, and to the necessity of being extremely guarded in what he might
write. "If thou (Kemp) will not accept of it in regard of the envy of
some citizens that cannot away with arguments, I'll prefer it (the book)
to the soul of Dick Tarlton, who I know will entertain it with thanks,
imitating herein that merry man Rabelais, who dedicated most of his
works to the soul of the old Queen of Navarre, many years after her
death, for that she was a maintainer of mirth in her life. Marry, God
send us more of her making, and then some of us should not live so
discontented as we do, for nowadays a man cannot have a bout with a
ballader, or write _Midas habet aures asininas_, in great Roman letters,
but he shall be in danger of a further displeasure."
Nash's "Isle of Dogs" was doubtless a satire upon the age, which
"touched too near" some persons in authority. In the last act of "The
Return from Parnassus" the Isle of Dogs is frequently spoken of, and
once as if it were a place of refuge. _Ingenioso_ says: "To be brief,
_Academico_, writs are out for me to apprehend me for my plays, and now
I am bound for _the Isle of Dogs_."
 Sir J. Harington has an epigram upon the paper war between Harvey
TO DOCTOR HARVEY OF CAMBRIDGE.
"The proverb says, who fights with dirty foes
Must needs be soil'd, admit they win or lose:
Then think it doth a Doctor's credit dash
To make himself antagonist to Nash."
--B. II., _Epigr_. 36.
 _Tergimini_ means the three Harveys, for Gabriel took up the
cudgels for himself and his two brothers.
 The death of Nash is spoken of in the address to a tract, which is
the more curious, as it forms a second part to "Pierce Penniless." It
has been assigned to Decker, under the title of "News from Hell;" [and
it was reprinted under the title of "A Knight's Conjuring." This issue
is included in the Percy Society's series.]
 [See the list, however, in "Ath. Cantab.," ii. 307-9, and in
Hazlitt's "Handbook," in v.]
 In 1589 Nash wrote the address prefixed to Robert Greene's
"Menaphon," which contains notices of various preceding and contemporary
poets, and which has been admired by all but Mr Malone, for the general
purity of its style and the justness of its criticism. As Nash was born
in November 1567, he was only in his twenty-second year when it was
 Parts of "Pierce Penniless, his Supplication to the Devil," are
written by Nash in a similar strain of bitter grief for past errors,
especially a poem inserted near the commencement. [As to Nash's
withdrawal of his apology, see Hazlitt in v.]
"Why is't damnation to despair and die
When life is my true happiness' disease?
My soul! my soul! thy safety makes me fly
The faulty means that might my pain appease.
Divines and dying men may talk of hell,
But in my heart her several torments dwell.
"Ah, worthless wit, to train me to this woe!
Deceitful arts that nourish discontent.
Ill thrive the folly that bewitch'd me so,
Vain thoughts, adieu, for now I will repent.
And yet my wants persuade me to proceed,
Since none takes pity of a scholar's need."
The last two lines of the first stanza are given to the Father in
"The Yorkshire Tragedy," attributed to Shakespeare.
 This play (if it do not more properly come under the class of
_shews_, as Nash himself calls it) was not printed until 1600; but
internal evidence proves that it was written, and probably performed, as
early as the autumn of 1592. Various decisive marks of time are pointed
out in notes in the course of the play, the principal of which are, the
great drought, the progress of Queen Elizabeth to Oxford, and the
breaking out of the plague. The piece was presented at Croydon, at the
residence of some nobleman, who is mentioned in many places. The
theatres in London were closed at this date in consequence of the
mortality. (See Malone's Shakespeare, by Boswell, in. 299, note). In the
prologue we are told that the representation was not on a _common
 The subsequent account of Will Sommers, or Summer, King Henry the
Eighth's celebrated fool, is from the pen of Robert Armin, an author and
actor, who himself often played the clown's part in the time of
Shakespeare. It is in his "Nest of Ninnies, _simply of themselves,
without compound_," 1608, 4to--
"Will Sommers born in Shropshire, as some say,
Was brought to Greenwich on a holiday,
Presented to the King; which Fool disdain'd
To shake him by the hand, or else asham'd:
Howe'er it was, as ancient people say,
With much ado was won to it that day.
Lean he was, hollow-eyed, as all report.
And stoop he did too; yet in all the court,
Few men were more belov'd than was this Fool,
Whose merry prate kept with the King much rule.
When he was sad, the King and he would rhime;
Thus Will exiled sadness many a time.
I could describe him as I did the rest,
But in my mind I do not think it best:
My reason this--howe'er I do descry him,
So many knew him, that I may belie him;
Therefore, to please all people, one by one,
I hold it best to let that pains alone.
Only thus much: he was a poor man's friend,
And help'd the widow often in the end.
The King would ever grant what he did crave,
For well he knew Will no exacting knave;
But wish'd the King to do good deeds great store,
Which caus'd the court to love him more and more."
Some few of the personal particulars, here omitted, Nash supplies in
the course of this play. [In 1676 a pamphlet was printed, purporting
falsely to be] "A pleasant History of the Life and death of Will
Summers; how he came first to be known at court, and by what means he
got to be King Henry the Eighth's 'Jester.'" It was reprinted by Harding
in 1794, with an engraving from an old portrait, supposed to be Will
Summer; but if it be authentic, it does not at all support Armin's
description of him, that he was "lean and hollow-eyed." Many of the
jests are copied from the French and Italian; and [almost all] of them
have been assigned also to Scoggin and Tarlton. One or two of these are
introduced into S. Rowley's "When you see me you know me," a historical
comedy, first printed in 1605, in which Will Summer plays a prominent
 Hor. Lib. i. Epist. 16, I, 62.
 Dick Huntley was, perhaps, the book-holder or prompter who is
subsequently mentioned, and whom Will Summer, in the licence of his
character, calls by his name. Perhaps his "cousin Ned" was another of
the actors. Harry Baker is spoken of in the scene, where Vertumnus is
despatched for Christmas and Backwinter.
 [The tract here referred to is Robert Copland's poem, called "Jyl
of Breyntford's Testament." See Hazlitt's "Handbook," p. 122.] Julian of
Brentford, or, as she is here called, Gyllian of Braynford, seems to
have been an old woman who had the reputation of possessing supernatural
power. In Henslowe's MSS., a play by Thomas Downton and Samuel Ridley,
called "Friar Fox and Gillian of Brentford," is mentioned under date of
February 1598-9, but it was acted, as appears by the same authority, as
early as 5th January 1592. She is noticed in "Westward Hoe!" 1607, where
Clare says: "O Master Linstock, 'tis no walking will serve my turn: have
me to bed, good, sweet Mistress Honeysuckle. I doubt that _old hag
Gillian of Braineford_ has bewitched me." Sig. G 4.
Julian of Brentford's will had been spoken of before by Nash in his
epistle "to the Gentlemen Students of both Universities," prefixed to
Greene's "Menaphoii," in 1589. "But so farre discrepant is the idle
vsage of our unexperienced and illiterated Punies from this
prescription, that a tale of Joane a Brainfords Will, and the vnlucky
frumenty, will be as soone entertained into their Libraries as the best
Poeme that euer Tasso eternisht."
 Camden, in his "Annals of the Reign of Queen Elizabeth," thus
speaks of the ravages of the plague in 1592-3, "For this whole year the
sickness raged violently in London, Saturn passing through the extreme
parts of Cancer and the head of Leo, as it did in the year 1563; in so
much, that when the year came about, there died of the sickness and
other diseases in the city and suburbs, 17,890 persons, besides William
Roe, Mayor, and three Aldermen; so that Bartholomew Fair was not kept,
and Michaelmas term was held at St Alban's, twenty miles from London."
 Vertumnus enters at the same time, but his name is not mentioned in
the old 4to at the opening of the scene. He acts the part of a messenger,
and, as appears afterwards, was provided with a silver arrow.
 Hor. lib. i. car. 28--
"Sed omnibus una manet nox,
Et calcanda semel via leti."
 "The Queen in her summer progress passed through Oxford, and stayed
there several days, where she was agreeably entertained with elegant
speeches, plays, and disputations, and received a splendid treat from
the Lord Buckhurst, Chancellor of the University."--_Camden's "Annals of
Elizabeth_." Her progress is again alluded to in that part of the play
where Summer makes his will--
"And finally, O words, now cleanse your course,
Unto Eliza, that most sacred dame,
Whom none but saints and angels ought to name,
All my fair days remaining I bequeath,
To wait upon her, _till she be return'd_," &c.
 The following passage in Gabriel Harvey's "New Letter of Notable
Contents, 1593," speaking of Nash, confirms the conjecture that
_Falantado_ or _Falanta_ was the burden of a song or ballad at the
time:--"Let him be the _Falanta_ down-diddle of rhyme, the hayhohaliday
of prose, the welladay of new writers, and the cutthroat of his
 The hobby-horse was a basket-horse used in morris-dances and May
games. See note 37 to Greene's "Tu Quoque."
 [Hall, the taborer, mentioned in "Old Meg of Herefordshire," 1609.
See the reprint in "Miscellanea Antiqua Anglicana," 1816.]
 A vulgar colloquialism for laying a girl on the grass.
 He ran in debt to this amount to usurers, who advanced him money by
giving him _lute-strings and grey paper_; which he was obliged to sell
at an enormous loss. There is a very apposite passage in Nash's
"Christ's Tears over Jerusalem," 1593, where he is referring to the
resort of spendthrifts and prodigals to usurers for supplies: In the
first instance, they obtain what they desire, "but at the second time of
their coming, it is doubtful to say whether they shall have money or no:
the world grows hard, and we are all mortal: let them make him any
assurance before a judge, and they shall have some hundred pounds (_per
consequence_) in silks and velvets. The third time if they come, they
have baser commodities: the fourth time _lute-strings and grey paper_;
and then, I pray pardon me, I am not for you: pay me that you owe me,
and you shall have anything."
So also in Greene's and Lodge's "Looking Glass for London and England,"
1594, a gentleman thus addresses a usurer, in hopes of inducing him to
relent: "I pray you, sir, consider that my loss was great by the
commodity I took up: you know, sir, I borrowed of you forty pounds,
whereof I had ten pounds in money, and thirty pounds in _lute-strings_,
which when I came to sell again, I could get but five pounds for them."
 Some case of horse-stealing, which had lately taken place, and
which had attracted public attention.
 See Collier's "Bibliogr. Catal.," ii. 512. Extr. from Stat. Reg.,
i. 184, and a woodcut in his "Book of Roxburghe Ballads," 1847, p. 103.
 The title of an old ballad. Compare Collier's "Extr. from
Stationers' Registers," i. 7, 19, and Rimbault's "Book of Songs and
Ballads," p. 83.
 The words of Aulus Gellius are these: "Neque mihi," inquit.
"aedificatio, neque vasum, neque vestimentum ullum est manupreciosum,
neque preciosus servus, neque ancilla est: si quid est," inquit, "quod
utar, utor: si non est, egeo: suum cuique per me uti atque frui licet."
Tum deinde addit: "Vitio vertunt, quia multa egeo; at ego illis quia
nequeunt egere."--Noct. Attic., lib. xiii. c. 23.
 Ovid "Rem. Am." l. 749.
 Nash seems, from various parts of his works, to have been well read
in what are called, though not very properly in English, the burlesque
poets of Italy. This praise of poverty in the reply of Ver to the
accusation of Summer is one proof of his acquaintance with them. See
"Capitolo sopra l'epiteto della poverta, a Messer Carlo Capponi," by
Matteo Francesi in the Rime Piacevoli del Berni, Copetta, Francesi, &c.,
vol. ii. p. 48. Edit. Vicenza, 1609--
"In somma ella non ha si del bestiale,
Com' altri stima, perche la natura
Del poco si contenta, e si prevale," &c.
 Sir J. Hawkins, in his "Hist. Music," iv. 479, contends that the
_recorder_ was the same instrument as that we now term a _flageolet_.
Some have maintained that it is the _flute_. [See Dyce's "Glossary" to
his second edit. of _Shakespeare_, in v.]
 Chaucer [if at least he had anything to do with the poem,]
translates _day's-eye_, or _daisy_, into _margarete_ in French,
in the following stanza from his "Flower and the Leaf"--
"Whereto they enclined everichon
With great reverence and that full humbly,
And at the lust there began anon
A lady for to sing right womanly
A bargaret in praising the _day's-eye_,
For as, methought, among her notes swete,
She said, _Si douce est la margarete_."
 Nash seems often to have quoted from memory, and here he has either
coupled parts of two lines, so as to make one, or he has invented a
beginning to the ending of Ovid's "Metam.," ii. 137. [The author seems
merely to have introduced scraps of Latin, without much regard to their
 [A common subject at shows.]
 [A _jeu-de-mots_ on the scale in music and the Latin word _sol_.]
 [Some play on words is here probably meant. _Eyesore_ quasi
 It may be doubtful whether this is the right word. Old copy,
 [Old copy, _baddest_.]
 [Old copy, _Heber_.]
 The quarto reads--
"And as for poetry, _woods_ eloquence."
It is no doubt a misprint for _words' eloquence_, or the eloquence of
 [Old copy, _source_. The emendation was suggested by Collier.]
 [Former edits.--"Envy envieth not outcries unrest."
And so the 4to.]
 [Old copy, _slight_.]
 On this subject Camden tells us: "There was both this summer (1592)
and the last so great a drought all England over, that the fields were
burnt, and the fountains dried up, and a great many beasts perish'd
everywhere for want of water. The Thames likewise, the noblest river of
all Britain, and which has as full and large a tide as any in Europe
(for it flows twice a day above sixty miles from the mouth of it, and
receives an increase from the mixture of many other streams and rivers
with it), was, however, sunk to that degree (to the wonder of all men)
on the 5th September, that a man might ride over it near London Bridge,
so shallow was the channel."
 There seems to be no account of this flood, unless it was that
which occurred in the autumn of 1579. See Stow's "Annals," edit. 1615,
fol. 686, and Collier's "Extr. from Stat. Reg.," ii. 105. There was also
a great partial flood in 1571; but it is not mentioned as having
affected the Thames.
 i.e., Persons who had drunk the Thames water fell ill.
 _Had I wist_ is _had I thought_; and the words are often met with
as the reproof of imprudence. So afterwards again in this play--
"Young heads count to build on _had I wist_."
 Skelton wrote a humorous doggrel piece called the "Tunning of
Elinor Rummin," which is here alluded to.
 This anecdote is from Aulus Gellius, "Noct. Attic.,"
lib. xvii. c. 9--
"Asiam tune tenebat imperio rex Darius: is Histiaeus, cum in Persia
apud Darium esset, Aristagorae cuipiam res quasdam occultas nuntiare
furtivo scripto volebat: comminiscitur opertum hoc literarum admirandum.
Servo suo diu oculos aegros habenti capillum ex capite omni, tanquam
medendi gratia, deradit, caputque ejus leve in literarum formas
compungit: his literis, quae voluerat, perscripsit: hominem postea,
quoad capillus adolesceret, domo continuit: ubi id factum est, ire ad
Aristagoram jubet; et cum ad eum, inquit, veneris, mandasse me dicito,
ut caput tuum, sicut nuper egomet feci, deradat. Servus ut imperatum
erat, ad Aristagoram venit, mandatumque domini affert: atque ille id
non esse frustra ratus, quod erat mandatum, fecit: ita literae
Herodotus "Terps," c. 35, tells the story somewhat differently. The
following is Mr Beloe's translation of it:--
"Whilst he was in this perplexity, a messenger arrived from Histiaeus at
Susa, who brought with him an express command to revolt, the particulars
of which were impressed in legible characters upon his skull. Histiaeus
was desirous to communicate his intentions to Aristagoras; but as the
ways were strictly guarded, he could devise no other method. He
therefore took one of the most faithful of his slaves, and inscribed
what we have mentioned upon his skull, being first shaved; he detained
the man till his hair was again grown, when he sent him to Miletus,
desiring him to be as expeditious as possible: Aristagoras being
requested to examine his skull, he discovered the characters which
commanded him to commence a revolt. To this measure Histiaeus was
induced by the vexation he experienced from his captivity at Susa."
It is pretty evident that Nash took Aulus Gellius as his authority, from
the insertion of the circumstance of the defective sight of the servant,
which certainly is important, as giving Histiaeus an excuse for shaving
 Peter Bales, who is here immortalised, has also received honourable
mention in Holinshed's Chronicle. He was supposed by Evelyn to be the
inventor of shorthand, but that art was discovered some years earlier by
Dr Timothy Bright, who is better known as the author of "A Treatise of
Melancholy," which was first published in 1586. Bales was born in 1547,
and many of the incidents of his life have come down to us; for while
the lives of poets and philosophers are left in obscurity, the important
achievements of a writing-master are detailed by contemporaries with
laborious accuracy. Mr D'Israeli, in his "Curiosities of Literature,"
has not scrupled to devote many pages to Bales's contests for
superiority with a rival penman of the name of Johnson. Bales was the
improver of Dr Bright's system, and, according to his own account in his
"Writing Schoolmaster," he was able to keep pace with a moderate
speaker. He seems to have been engaged in public life, by acting as
secretary where caligraphy was required; and he was at length accused of
being concerned in the plot of Lord Essex; but he was afterwards
vindicated, and punished his accuser. The greatest performance, that in
which his exalted fame may most securely rest, was the writing of the
Lord's Prayer, Creed, Decalogue, with two Latin prayers, in the compass
of a penny. Brachygraphy had arrived at considerable perfection soon
after 1600, and in Webster's "Devil's Law Case," there is a trial scene,
in which the following is part of the dialogue--
SANITONELLA. Do you hear, officers?
You must take special care that you let in
No _brachygraphy_ men to take notes.
1st OFFICER. No. sir.
SANITONELLA. By no means:
We cannot have a cause of any fame,
But you must have some scurvy pamphlets and lewd ballads
Engendered of it presently.
In Heywood's "Pleasant Dialogues and Dramas," 1637, he complains that
some persons by stenography had drawn the plot of his play, and put it
into print; but he adds (which certainly does not tell much in favour of
the perfection of the art as then practised) that it was "scarce one
 In the margin opposite "Sol should have been beholding to the
barber, and not to the beard-master," the words "_Imberbis Apollo_,
a beardless poet," are inserted in the margin.
 From what is said here, and in other parts of the play, we may
conclude that it was performed either by the children of St Paul's, of
the Queen's Chapel, or of the Revels. Afterwards Will Summer, addressing
the performers, says to them: "Learn of him, you _diminutive urchins_,
how to behave yourselves in your vocations," &c. The epilogue is spoken
by a little boy, who sits on Will Summer's knee, and who, after it is
delivered, is carried out.
 [See Keightley's "Mythology of Ancient Greece and Italy," p. 411,
 [In allusion to the proverb.]
 _Arre_ is meant to indicate the snarling of a dog.
 So Machiavelli, in his complete poem, "Dell' Asino d'Oro," makes
the Hog, who is maintaining the superiority of the brute creation to
man, say of beasts in general--
"Questa san meglior usar color che sanno
Senz' altra disciplina per se stesso
Seguir lor bene et evitar lor danno."--Cap. viii.
 [Old copy, _I, and his deep insight_.]
 An allusion to Sebastian Brandt's "Ship of Fools," translated by
 So in "the second three-man's song," prefixed to Dekker's
"Shoemaker's Holiday," 1600, though in one case the bowl was _black_, in
the other _brown_--
"_Trowl the bowl_, the jolly _nut-brown_ bowl;
And here, kind mate, to thee!
Let's sing a dirge for Saint Hugh's soul,
And drown it merrily_."
It seems probable that this was a harvest-home song, usually sung by
reapers in the country: the chorus or burden, "Hooky, hooky," &c. is
still heard in some parts of the kingdom, with this variation--
"Hooky, hooky, we have shorn,
And bound what we did reap,
And we have brought the harvest home,
To make bread good and cheap."
Which is an improvement, inasmuch as harvests are not brought home
 Shakespeare has sufficiently shown this in the character of
Francis, the drawer, in "Henry IV. Part I."
 [A play on the double meaning of the word].
 In the original copy this negative is by some accident thrust into
the next line, so as to destroy at once the metre and the meaning. It is
still too much in the first line.
 This expression must allude to the dress of Harvest, which has many
ears of wheat about it in various parts. Will Summer, after Harvest goes
out, calls him, on this account, "a bundle of straw," and speaks of his
 A line from a well-known ballad of the time.
 [Old copy, _attract_.]
 In allusion to the ears of corn, straw, &c., with which he was
 Old copy, _God's_.
 The exclamations of a carter to his horse. In "John Bon and Mast.
Person" (Hazlitt's "Popular Poetry," iv. 16), it is _haight, ree_.
 Old copy, _had_.
 i.e., Cheated.
 A play upon the similarity of sound between _vetches_ and
_fetches_. In the old copy, to render it the more obvious, they are
 Mr Todd found this word in Baret's "Alveary," 1580, as well as in
Cotgrave; but he quotes no authority for the signification he attaches
to it--viz., a _lubber_. Nash could have furnished him with a quotation:
it means an idle lazy fellow.
 Alluding to the attraction of straw by jet. See this point
discussed in Sir Thos. Brown's "Vulgar Errors," b. ii. c. 4.
 [Old copy, _I had_.]
 [Old copy, _there_.]
 This song is quoted, and a long dissertation inserted upon it, in
the notes to "Henry IV. Part II." act v. sc. ii., where Silence gives
the two last lines in drinking with Falstaff. _To do a man right_ was a
technical expression in the art of drinking. It was the challenge to
pledge. None of the commentators on Shakespeare are able to explain at
all satisfactorily what connection there is between _Domingo_ and a
drinking song. Perhaps we should read Domingo as two words, i.e., _Do_
 [Old copy, _patinis_.]
 Horace, lib. i. car. 37--
"Nunc est bibendum, nunc pede libero
 [Old copy, _epi_.]
 [A line out of a ballad.]
 Micher, in this place, signifies what we now call a flincher: in
general, it means a truant--one who lurks and hides himself out of the
way. See Mr Gifford's short note on Massinger's "Guardian," act iii.
sc. v., and Mr Steevens' long note on Shakespeare's "Henry IV. Part I."
act ii. sc. 4.
 [Friesland beer. See "Popular Antiquities of Great Britain,"
vol. ii. p. 259.]
 [See Hazlitt's "Proverbs," 1869, p. 271.] Properly _super ungulum_,
referring to knocking the jack on the thumb-nail, to show that the
drinker had drained it. Ben Jonson uses it in his "Case is Altered:"
"I confess Cupid's carouse; he plays _super nagulum_ with my liquor of
life."--Act iv. sc. 3.--_Collier_.
 This was the common cry of the English soldiers in attacking an
enemy: we meet with it in Marlowe's "Edward II." where Warwick exclaims--
"Alarum to the fight!
_St George for England_, and the Baron's right!"
So also in Rowley's "When you see me, you know me," 1605: "King Arthur
and his Knights of the Round Table that were buried in armour are alive
again, crying _St George for England_! and mean shortly to conquer Rome."
 From the insertion of _Toy_ in this song instead of _Mingo_, as it
stands on the entrance of Bacchus and his companions, we are led to
infer that the name of the actor who played the part of Will Summer was
_Toy_: if not, there is no meaning in the change. Again, at the end of
the piece, the epilogue says in express terms: "The great fool Toy hath
marred the play," to which Will Summers replies, "Is't true, Jackanapes?
Do you serve me so?" &c. Excepting by supposing that there was an actor
of this name, it is not very easy to explain the following expressions
by Gabriel Harvey, as applied to Greene, in his "Four Letters and
Certain Sonnets, 1592," the year when Nash's "Summer's Last Will and
Testament" was performed: "They wrong him much with their epitaphs and
solemn devices, that entitle him not at the least _the second Toy_ of
London, the stale of Paul's," &c.
 _Nipitaty_ seems to have been a cant term for a certain wine. Thus
Gabriel Harvey, in "Pierce's Supererogation," 1593, speaks of "the
_Nipitaty_ of the nappiest grape;" and afterwards he says, "_Nipitaty_
will not be tied to a post," in reference to the unconfined tongues of
man who drink it.--_Collier_.
 A passage quoted in Note 6 to "Gammer Gurton's Needle," from Nash's
"Pierce Penniless," is precisely in point, both in explaining the word,
and knocking the cup, can, or jack on the thumb-nail, previously
performed by Bacchus.
 Closely is secretly: a very common application of the word in our
old writers. It is found in "Albumazar"--
"I'll entertain him here: meanwhile steal you
Closely into the room;"
and in many other places.
 Old copy, _Hope_.
 Old copy, _as this, like_.
 Old copy, _Will_.
 The "shepherd that now sleeps in skies" is Sir Philip Sidney, and
the line, with a slight inversion for the sake of the rhyme, is taken
from a sonnet in "Astrophel and Stella," appended to the "Arcadia"--
"Because I breathe not love to every one,
Nor do I use set colours for to wear,
Nor nourish special locks of vowed hair,
Nor give each speech a full point of a groan,
The courtly nymphs, acquainted with the moan
Of them who in their lips love's standard bear,
'What he?' say they of me, 'now I dare swear
He cannot love: no, no; let him alone.'
And think so still, so Stella know my mind:
Profess, indeed, I do not Cupid's art;
But you, fair maids, at length this true shall find,
That his right badge is but worn in the heart.
Dumb swans, not chattering pies, do lovers prove:
They love indeed who quake to say they love."
--P. 537, edit. 1598.
It may be worth a remark that the two last lines are quoted with a
difference in "England's Parnassus," 1600, p. 191--
"Dumb swans, not chattering pies, do lovers prove;
They love indeed who _dare not say_ they love."
In the quarto copy of Nash's play the word _swains_ is misprinted for
_swans_. The introduction to the passage would have afforded Mr Malone
another instance, had he wanted one, that shepherd and poet were used
almost as synonymes by Shakespeare's contemporaries.
 Perhaps we ought to read _feign_ instead of _frame_; but _frame_
is very intelligible, and it has therefore not been altered.
 The quarto gives this line thus--
"Of secrets more desirous _or_ than men,"
which is decidedly an error of the press.
 [Old copy, every.]
 [Old copy, true hell.]
 See act i. sc. 3 of "Macbeth"--
2D WITCH. I'll give thee a wind.
1ST WITCH. Thou art kind.
3D WITCH. And I another.
From the passage in Nash's play, it seems that Irish and Danish witches
could sell winds: Macbeth's witches were Scotish.
 [Old copy, _party_.]
 [Old copy, _Form'd_.]
 As usual, Nash has here misquoted, or the printer has omitted a
word. Virgil's line is--
"_Fama malum, quo non aliud velocius ullum_."
--"Aeneid," iv. 174.
Gabriel Harvey, replying in 1597, in his "Trimming of Thomas Nash,
Gentleman" (written in the name of Richard Litchfield, the
barber-surgeon of Trinity College, Cambridge), also alludes to this
commonplace: "The virtuous riches wherewith (as broad-spread fame
reporteth) you are endued, though _fama malum_ (as saith the poet) which
I confirm," &c. Perhaps this was because Nash had previously employed it,
or it might be supposed that the barber would have been unacquainted
 A soldier of this sort, or one pretending to be a soldier, is a
character often met with in our old comedies, such as Lieutenant
Maweworm and Ancient Hautboy in "A Mad World, my Masters," Captain Face
in "Ram-Alley," &c.
 [_Dii minores_.]
 Pedlar's French was another name for the cant language used by
vagabonds. What pedlars were may be judged from the following
description of them in "The Pedlar's Prophecy," a comedy printed in
1595, but obviously written either very early in the reign of Elizabeth,
or perhaps even in that of her sister--
"I never knew honest man of this occupation.
But either he was a dycer, a drunkard, a maker of shift,
A picker, or cut-purse, a raiser of simulation,
Or such a one as run away with another man's wife."
 [Old copy, _by_.]
 _Ink-horn_ is a very common epithet of contempt for pedantic and
affected expressions. The following, from Churchyard's "Choice," sig.
E e 1., sets it in its true light--
"As _Ynkehorne_ termes smell of the schoole sometyme."
It went out of use with the disuse of ink-horns. It would be very easy
to multiply instances where the word is employed in our old writers. It
most frequently occurs in Wilson's "Rhetoric," where is inserted an
epistle composed of _ink-horn terms_; "suche a letter as Wylliam Sommer
himself could not make a better for that purpose. Some will thinke, and
swere it too, that there never was any suche thing written: well, I will
not force any man to beleve it, but I will saie thus much, and abyde by
it too, the like have been made heretofore, and praised above the
moone." It opens thus--
"Ponderying, expendying, and revolutying with myself, your urgent
affabilitee, and ingenious capacitee, for mundaine affaires, I cannot
but celebrate and extolle your magnificall dexteritee above all other;
for how could you have adopted such illustrate, prerogative, and
dominicall superioritee, if the fecunditee of your inginie had not been
so fertile and wonderfull pregnant?"--Fo. 86. edit. 1553. Wilson
elsewhere calls them "_ink-pot_ terms."
 [The popular idea at that time, and long afterwards, of
Machiavelli, arising from a misconception of his drift in "Il Principe."
See an article on this subject in Macaulay's "Essays."]
 [Old copy, _toucheth_, which may, of course, be right; but the
more probable word is that here substituted.]
 [The "Ebrietatis Encomium."]
 [Perhaps the "Image of Idleness," of which there was an edition in
1581. See Hazlitt's "Handbook," p. 291, and ibid. Suppl.]
 Nash alludes to a celebrated burlesque poem by Francisco Copetta,
entitled (in the old collection of productions of the kind, made in
1548, and many times afterwards reprinted), "Capitolo nel quale si
lodano le Noncovelle." Some of the thoughts in Rochester's well-known
piece seem taken from it. A notion of the whole may be formed from the
following translation of four of the _terze rime_--
"_Nothing_ is brother to primaeval matter,
'Bout which philosophers their brains may batter
To find it out, but still their hopes they flatter.
"Its virtue is most wondrously display'd,
For in the Bible, we all know, 'tis said,
God out of _nothing_ the creation made.
"Yet _nothing_ has nor head, tail, back, nor shoulder,
And tho' than the great _Dixit_ it is older,
Its strength is such, that all things first shall moulder.
"The rank of _nothing_ we from this may see:
The mighty Roman once declared that he
Caesar or _nothing_ was resolv'd to be."
[But after all, had not Nash more probably in his recollection Sir
Edward Dyer's "Praise of Nothing," a prose tract printed in 1585?]
 [See Hazlitt's "Handbook," v. Fleming.]
 [Alluding to the "Grobianus et Grobiana" of Dedekindus.]
 Ovid's lines are these--
"Discite, qui sapitis, non quae nos scimus inertes,
Sed trepidas acies, et fera castra sequi."
--"Amorum," lib. iii. el. 8.
 The author of "The World's Folly," 1615, uses _squitter-wit_ in
the same sense that Nash employs _squitter-book_: "The _primum mobile_,
which gives motion to these over-turning wheels of wickedness, are
those mercenary _squitter-wits_, miscalled poets."
In "The Two Italian Gentlemen," the word _squitterbe-book_, or
_squitter-book_, is found, and with precisely the same signification
which Nash gives it--
"I would mete with the scalde _squitterbe-booke_ for this geare."
 His _nown_, instead of his _own_, was not an uncommon corruption.
So Udall--"Holde by his yea and nay, be his _nowne_ white sonne."
 [Old copy, _Fuilmerodach_.]
 _Regiment_ has been so frequently used in the course of these
volumes, in the sense of government or rule, that it is hardly worth
 This is, of course, spoken ironically, and of old, the expression
_good fellow_ bore a double signification, which answered the purpose of
Will Summer. Thus, in Lord Brooke's "Caelica," sonnet 30--
"_Good fellows_, whom men commonly doe call.
Those that do live at warre with truth and shame."
Again, in Heywood's "Edward IV. Part I.," sig. E 4--
"KING EDWARD. Why, dost thou not love a _good fellow_?
"HOBS. No, _good fellows_ be _thieves_."
 Henry Baker was therefore the name of the actor who performed the
part of Vertumnus.
 The joke here consists in the similarity of sound between
_despatch_ and _batch_, Will Summers mistaking, or pretending to
mistake, in consequence.
 [Old copy, _Sybalites_.]
 This is still, as it was formerly, the mode of describing the
awkward bowing of the lower class. In the "Death of Robert Earl of
Huntington," 1601, when Will Brand, a vulgar assassin, is introduced
to the king, the stage direction to the actor in the margin is,
 A proverb in [Heywood's "Epigrams," 1562. See Hazlitt's
"Proverbs," 1869, p. 270. Old copy, _love me a little_.]
 [Old copy, _deny_.]
 The meaning of the word _snudge_ is easily guessed in this place,
but it is completely explained by T. Wilson, in his "Rhetoric," 1553,
when he is speaking of a figure he calls _diminution_, or moderating the
censure applied to vices by assimilating them to the nearest virtues:
thus he would call "a _snudge_ or _pynche-penny_ a good husband, a
thrifty man" (fo. 67). Elsewhere he remarks: "Some riche _snudges_,
having great wealth, go with their hose out at heels, their shoes out at
toes, and their cotes out at both elbowes; for who can tell if such men
are worth a grote when their apparel is so homely, and all their
behavior so base?" (fo. 86.) The word is found in Todd's Johnson, where
Coles is cited to show that _snudge_ means "one who hides himself in a
house to do mischief." No examples of the employment of the word by any
of our writers are subjoined.
 Mr Steevens, in a note to "Hamlet," act iv. sc. 5, says that he
thinks Shakespeare took the expression of _hugger-mugger_ there used
from North's Plutarch, but it was in such common use at the time that
twenty authors could be easily quoted who employ it: it is found in
Ascham, Sir J. Harington, Greene, Nash, Dekker, Tourneur, Ford, &c. In
"The Merry Devil of Edmonton" also is the following line--
"But you will to this gear in _hugger-mugger_."
 It is not easy to guess why Nash employed this Italian word
instead of an English one. _Lento_ means lazy, and though an adjective,
it is used here substantively; the meaning, of course, is that the idle
fellow who has no lands begs.
 i.e., Hates. See note to "Merchant of Venice," act v. sc. 1.
 [Old copy, _Hipporlatos_. The emendation was suggested by
 The reader is referred to "Romeo and Juliet," act i. sc. 4,
respecting the strewing of rushes on floors instead of carpets. Though
nothing be said upon the subject, it is evident that Back-winter makes a
resistance before he is forced out, and falls down in the struggle.
 [Soiling: a common word in our early writers. Old copy,
 _I pray you, hold the book well_, was doubtless addressed to the
prompter, or as he is called in the following passage, from the
Induction to Ben Jonson's "Cynthia's Revels," 1601, the _book-holder_:
one of the children of Queen Elizabeth's chapel is speaking of the poet.
"We are not so officiously befriended by him as to have his presence in
the 'tiring house to _prompt_ us aloud, stampe at the _booke-holder_,
sweare for our properties, curse the poor tire-man, raile the musicke
out of tune, and sweat for every veniall trespasse we commit, as some
 [Old copy, _cares_. The word _murmuring_ is, by an apparent error,
repeated in the 4to from the preceding line.]
 [Old copy, _ears_.]
 This line fixes the date when "Summer's Last Will and Testament"
was performed very exactly--viz., during Michaelmas Term, 1593; for
Camden informs us in his "Annals," that in consequence of the plague,
Michaelmas Term, instead of being held in London, as usual, was held at
 "Deus, Deus, ille, Menalca!
Sis bonus o felixque tuis."
--Virgil "Ecl." v. 64.
 These words, which are clearly a stage direction, and which show
how mere a child delivered the Epilogue, in the old copy are made part
of the text.
 Malone originally supposed the plays to be by Heywood, and so
treated them. In the last edit. of Shakespeare by Boswell (iii. 99) the
mistake is allowed to remain, and in a note also "The Downfall of Robert
Earl of Huntington" is quoted as Heywood's production.
 Ritson, in his "Robin Hood," I. li. et seq., gives some
quotations from them, as by Munday and Chettle.
 Mr Gifford fell into an error (Ben Jonson, vi. 320) in stating
that "The Case is Altered" "should have stood at the head of Jonson's
works, had chronology only been consulted." In the "Life of Ben Jonson,"
he refers to Henslowe's papers to prove that "Every Man in his Humour"
was written in 1596, and in "The Case is Altered," Ben Jonson expressly
quotes Meres' "Palladia Tamia," which was not published until 1598.
Nash's "Lenten Stuff," affords evidence that "the witty play of 'The
Case is Altered'" was popular in 1599.
 On the title-page of his translation of "Palmerin of England," the
third part of which bears date in 1602, he is called "one of the
Messengers of her Majesty's Chamber;" but how, and at what date he
obtained this "small court appointment," we are without information.
Perhaps it was given to him as a reward for his services in 1582.
 Munday did not always publish under his own name, and according to
Ritson, whose authority has often been quoted on this point, translated
"The Orator, written in French by Alexander Silvayn," under the name of
Lazarus Piot, from the dedication to which it may be inferred that he
had been in the army. "A ballad made by Ant. Munday, of the
encouragement of an English soldier to his fellow mates," was licenced
to John Charlewood, in 1579.
 [See the more copious memoir of Munday by Mr Collier, prefixed to
the Shakespeare Society's edit. of his "John-a-Kent," &c., 1851.]
 That is, no printed copy has yet been discovered, although it may
have passed through the press.
 In Henslowe's MSS. this play is also called, "The First part of
 In 1620 was printed "The World toss'd at Tennis, by Thomas
Middleton and William Rowley." Perhaps it is the same play, and Munday
had a share in the authorship of it. [This is not at all probable.]
 There is no list of characters prefixed to the old copy.
 This forms the Induction to the play, which purports to have been
written to be performed before Henry VIII., by Sir Thomas Mantle, who
performed Robin Hood, by Sir John Eltham, who played the part of Little
John, by Skelton, who acted Friar Tuck, by "Little Tracy," as he is
called, who supported the character of Maid Marian, and others, whose
names are not mentioned. The whole is only supposed to be a rehearsal
prior to the representation of the piece before the king, and in the
course of it Skelton and Sir John Eltham have various critical and
explanatory interlocutions. Skelton, it will be observed, also
undertakes the duty of interpreting the otherwise "inexplicable
dumb-show." The old copy is not divided into acts and scenes.
 [Old copy, _your_.]
 [In the old copy this direction is unnecessarily repeated in
 [The direction inserted on p. 107 is repeated in full in the 4to.]
 This is in some sort a parody upon the well-known proverb, which
is thus given by Ray--
"Many talk of Robin Hood, that never shot in his bow,
And many talk of Little John, that never did him know."
It is also found in Camden's "Remains," by Philpot, 1636, p. 302, though
the two lines, obviously connected in sense, are there separated. [See
also Hazlitt's "Proverbs," 1869, p. 276.]
 This sort of verse, from the frequent use of it made by Skelton in
his poems, acquired the name of _Skeltonic_ or _Skeltonical_. According
to the manner in which the poet's character is drawn, he could not avoid
falling into the use of it, even out of its place, in the course of the
play; and of this a singular instance is given after the capture and
discovery of Ely, when Sir John Eltham, in one of the interlocutions,
complains of Skelton that in performing the part of Friar Tuck he fell--
"Into the vein
Of ribble-rabble rhimes Skeltonical."
In 1589 was published a tract with the following curious title--
"A Skeltonical salutation,
Or condigne gratulation,
And just vexation
Of the Spanish nation;
That in bravado
Spent many a crusado
In setting forth an Armado
England to invado."
The whole piece is in this kind of verse. A copy of it is in the British
Puttenham, speaking of poetry of this sort, says: "Such were the rimes
of Skelton (usurping the name of Poet Laureat), being in deede but a
rude, rayling rimer, and all his doings ridiculous; he used both short
distances and short measures, pleasing onely to the popular eare; in our
courtly maker we banish them utterly."--_Arte of English Poesie_, 1589,
 Matilda is here, and elsewhere, called Marian, before in fact she
takes that name; and after she has assumed it, in the course of the play
she is frequently called Matilda.
 [Old copy, _Into_.]
 Jest is used in the same sense in "The Spanish Tragedy," act i.,
where the king exclaims--
"But where is old Hieronimo, our marshal?
He promis'd us, in honour of our guest,
To grace our banquet with some pompous _jest_."
Dr Farmer, in reference to the line in "Richard II., act i. sc. 3--
"As gentle and as jocund as to _jest_,"
quotes the above passage from "The Spanish Tragedy" to show that to
_jest_, "in old language, means _to play a part in a mask_."
 [Old copy, _my_.]
 [Old copy, _place_.]
 Ritson has the following note upon this sign: "That is, the inn so
called, upon Ludgate Hill. The modern sign, which, however, seems to
have been the same 200 years ago, is _a bell_ and _a wild man_; but the
original is supposed to have been _a beautiful Indian_, and the
inscription, _La belle Sauvage_. Some, indeed, assert that the inn once
belonged to a Lady _Arabella Sauvage_; and others that its name
originally, the _belle_ and _Sauvage_, arose (like the _George and Blue
Boar_) from the junction of two inns with those respective signs. _Non
nostrum est tantas componere lites_." "Robin Hood," I. p. liv.
 [Old copy, _meant_.]
 Little John's _exit_ is marked here in the old copy, but it does
not take place till afterwards: he first whispers Marian, as we are told
immediately, _John_ in the original standing for Little John.
 i.e., A collection or company, and not, as we now use the word,
a _kind_ "of fawning sycophants."
 i.e., Made a Justice of Peace of him, entitling him to the style
 [Old copy, _ran_.]
 i.e., "I shall _be even_ with you." So Pisaro in Haughton's
"Englishmen for my Money," says of his three daughters--
"Well, I shall find a tune _to meet_ with them."--Sig. E 2.
 Alluding to the challenges of the officers who are aiding and
assisting the Sheriff.
 Paris Garden (or as it is printed in the old copy, _Parish_
Garden), was a place where bears were baited and other animals kept.
Curtal was a common term for a small horse, and that which Banks owned,
and which acquired so much celebrity for its sagaciousness, is so called
"And some there are
Will keep a _curtal_ to show juggling tricks,
And give out 'tis a spirit."
--"Vittoria Corombona," [Webster's Works, by Hazlitt, ii. 47.]
_Sib is related to_; and perhaps _the ape's only least at Paris Garden_,
may apply to Banks's pony. Dekker, in his "Villanies Discovered," 1620,
mentions in terms "Bankes his Curtal."
 In the course of the play John is sometimes called _Earl_ John,
and sometimes _Prince_ John, as it seems, indifferently.
 [Old copy, _deceive_.]
 It must be recollected that the Queen and Marian have exchanged
 [Old copy, _must_.]
 [Old copy, _sovereign's mother, queen_.]
 [Old copy, _cankers_]
 [Old copy, _thrust_.]
 _Haught_ is frequently used for _haughty_, when the poet wants to
abridge it of a syllable: thus Shakespeare, in "Richard III." act ii.
"And the queen's sons and brothers _haught_ and proud."
He has also "the _haught_ Northumberland" and "the _haught_ Protector."
Kyd in "Cornelia," act iv., also has this line--
"Pompey, the second Mars, whose _haught_ renown."
 [Old copy, _Ah, my good Lord, for, etc_.]
 i.e., Shall not _separate_ us till we die. See Gifford's note to
"The Renegado."--Massinger's Works, ii. 136.
 _Palliard_ is to be found in Dryden's "Hind and Panther:"
_palliardize_ is not in very common use among our old writers. Dekker,
in his "Bellman of London," 1616, sig. D 2, gives a description of a
_Palliard_. Tuck's exclamation looks as if it were quoted.
 In the old copy, Scarlet and Scathlock are also mentioned as
entering at this juncture, but they were on the stage before.
 The _mistake_ to which Warman alludes is, that Friar Tuck takes
part with Robin Hood, instead of assisting the Sheriff against him.
 This incident, with some variations, is related in the old ballad
of "Robin Hood rescuing the Widow's _three_ sons from the Sheriff, when
going to be executed." See Ritson's "Robin Hood," ii. 151.
 The old copy has a blank here; but whether it was so in the
original MS., whether a line has dropped out by accident, or whether it
was meant that Much should be suddenly interrupted by Robin Hood, must
be matter of conjecture.
 So printed in the old copy, as if part of some poetical narrative.
 i.e., _Gang_. So written by Milton, Jonson, and many of our best
 [Old copy, _all your_.]
 [Old copy, _never wife_.]
 [Old copy, _in a loath'd_.]
 [Own, from the Latin _proprius_.]
 _To lie at the ward_ was, and is still, a term in fencing; thus
Fairfax, translating the fight between Tancred and Argantes in the 6th
book of Tasso's "Jerusalem Delivered," says--
"Close _at his surest ward_ each champion _lieth_."
--"Godfrey of Bulloigne," 1600.
 The _exit_ of Salisbury is not marked, but it of course takes
 It seems singular that the author of this play should confound two
such persons as the Shoemaker of Bradford, who made all comers "vail
their staves," and George-a-Greene, the Pinner of Wakefield; yet such is
the case in the text. The exploits of both are celebrated in the play of
"The Pinner of Wakefield" (in Dyce's editions of Greene's Works), which
seems to have been popular. Nevertheless Henslowe in his MSS. speaks of
George-a-Greene as one dramatic piece, and of "The Pinner of Wakefield"
as another, as if they were two distinct heroes. See "Malone's
Shakespeare," by Boswell, iii. 300. Munday also makes Scathlock and
Scarlet two separate persons. [Munday does not confound the Pinder of
Wakefield with the Bradford hero, for he expressly distinguishes between
them; but he errs in giving the latter the name of George-a-Greene.]
 To _record_, as applied to birds, is synonymous to the verb to
_sing_: thus in "The Spanish Tragedy," act ii.--
"Hark, madam, how the _birds record_ by night."
Shakespeare so employs the word in his "Two Gentlemen of Verona," act v.
sc. 4, and in the notes upon the passage more than sufficient instances
 The 4to reads "the lawless _Rener_" [the _n_ being misprinted
 _Mort_ was the old cant word for a _wench_, and was synonymous
with _doxy_, which is still sometimes in use. An explanation, for such
as require it, may be found in Dekker'a "Bellman of London," ed. 1616,
 Mr Todd, in his "Dictionary," thus explains the word _belive_:
"Speedily, quickly; it is still common in Westmoreland for _presently_,
which sense, implying a little delay, like our expression of _by and
by_, was formerly the general acceptation of the word." Spenser uses it
"Perdie, Sir Knight," said then the enchanter _b'live_,
"That shall I shortly purchase to your bond."
--"Faerie Queene," b. ii. c. iii. st. 18.
 _Manchet_ is fine white bread: _panis candidior et purior_.
 It seems agreed by the commentators on the word _proface_ (which
Shakespeare uses in "Henry IV. Part II.," act v. sc. 3), that it means
in fact what Robin Hood has already said: "Much good may it do you." It
is disputed whether it be derived from the French or the Italian; Mr
Todd gives _prouface_ as the etymology, and Malone _pro vi faccia_, but
in fact they are one and the same. It occurs in "The Widow's Tears," act
iv. sc. 1, where Ero is eating and drinking in the tomb. [Compare Dyce's
"Shakespeare," 1868, Gloss, in v.]
 The 4to terms them _poting_ sticks, and so sometimes they were
called, instead of _poking_ sticks. They were used to plait and set
 The old copy here repeats, in part, the preceding stage direction,
viz., _Enter Friar like a pedlar, and Jenny_, which must be an error, as
they are already on the stage; in fact, only Sir Doncaster and his armed
followers enter. The _exit_ of Robin Hood, with Marian and Fitzwater, is
 i.e., Thrive.
 The rhyme is made out by reading _certainly_, but the old copy,
[which is printed as prose.] has it _certain_.
 This stage direction, like many others, is not marked.
 So in "Henry VI. Part III." act iii. sc. 3: "Did I _impale_ him
with the regal crown?" This use of the word is common.
 [Old copy, _light_.]
 See Mr Steevens' note on "Henry VIII.," act v. sc. 3.
 These two lines clearly belong to the Prior, though the old copy
omits his name before them.
 i.e., Vengeance.
 [Old copy, _Souldans_.]
 In the old copy _soldiour's_.
 See Mr Gifford's note (6) to "The Maid of Honour," Massinger's
Works, iii. 47, for an explanation of the origin and use of this
expression of contempt. See also Malone's remarks upon the passage in
"Twelfth Night," act iii. sc. 4: "He is a knight dubb'd with an
unhatch'd rapier and on _carpet_ consideration."
 On the standard by which Leicester was attended on his entrance,
no doubt the crest of that family, viz., a bear and ragged staff, was
represented. To this the queen refers when she exclaims--
"Were this _bear_ loose, how he would tear our maws."
 [Old copy, _Bear, thou hast_. Leicester was accompanied by his
ancient, whose entrance is marked above.]
 _Quite_ is frequently used for _requite_: as in Massinger's "Old
Law," act ii. sc. 2--
"In troth, Eugenia, I have cause to weep too;
But when I visit, I come comfortably,
And look to be so _quited_."
 Although the old copy mentions no more at the beginning of this
interview than _Enter Leicester, drum and ancient_, yet according to
this speech he must either have been more numerously attended, or some
of his followers came upon the stage during his dispute with the king
 The return of Leicester and Richmond, after their _exit_ just
before, is not mentioned in the 4to.
 [Old copy, _Come off, off_.]
 _Guests_ were often formerly spelt _guess_, whether it were or
were not necessary for the rhyme.
 The stage direction in the original is only _Enter Robin_.
 This must have been spoken aside to Robin Hood.
 [Old copy, _soon_.]
 [This passage appears to point to some antecedent drama not at
 The 4to has it _Damn'd Judaism_, but the allusion is to the
treachery of Judas. The jailer of Nottingham afterwards calls Warman
 [Old copy, _him_.]
 In the old copy this is made a part of what Warman speaks, which
is a mistake, as is evident from the context.
 Her _exit_ and re-entrance are not marked in the old copy. Perhaps
she only speaks from a window.
 ["A term of contempt," says Halliwell in v.; but does it not
refer strictly to a card-sharper?]
 He blunders. Of course he means "when tidings came to his ears."
He does not make much better of his prose.
 This is from the old ballad, "The Jolly Pinder of Wakefield, with
Robin Hood, Scarlet, and John," with variations--
"At Michaelmas next my cov'nant comes out
When every man gathers his fee;
Then I'll take my blue blade all in my hand,
And plod to the greenwood with thee."
--Ritson's "Robin Hood," ii. 18.
 It is evident that Friar Tuck here gives John a sword.
 [Light, active. See Nares, edit. 1859, in v.]
 The origin of _amort_ is French, and sometimes it is written
_Tout-a-la-mort_, as in "The Contention between Liberality and
Prodigality," 1602, sig. B, as pointed out in a note to "Ram Alley."
 [Query, best hanged? He refers to the ex-sheriff.]
 _Defy_ is here used in the sense of _refuse_, which was not
uncommon: thus in the "Death of Robert Earl of Huntington," we have this
passage, "Or, as I said, for ever I _defy_ your company." In the "Four
'Prentices of London," act i. sc. 1, the old Earl of Boulogne says--
"Vain pleasures I abhor, all things _defy_,
That teach not to despair, or how to die."
Other instances are collected in a note to the words, "I do _defy_ thy
conjuration," from "Romeo and Juliet," act v. sc. 3.
 Their entrance is not marked in the original.
 [Old copy, _sweet_.]
 It will be seen from the introduction to this play, that Munday
and others, according to Henslowe, wrote a separate play under the title
of "The Funeral of Richard Cordelion." [The latter drama was not written
till some months after this and the ensuing piece, and was intended as a
sort of sequel to the plays on the history of Robin Hood.]
 Misprinted _Dumwod_ in the old copy.
 Two lines in the Epilogue might be quoted to show that only one
author was concerned in it--
"Thus is Matilda's story shown in act,
And rough-hewn out by _an_ uncunning hand."
But probably the assertion is not to be taken strictly; or if it be, it
will not prove that Chettle had no hand, earlier or later, in the
authorship. Mr Gifford in his Introduction to Ford's Works, vol. i.
xvi., remarks very truly, that we are not to suppose from the
combination of names of authors "that they were always simultaneously
employed in the production of the same play;" and Munday, who was
perhaps an elder poet than Chettle, may have himself originally written
both parts of "The Earl of Huntington," the connection of Chettle with
them being subsequent, in making alterations or adapting them to the
 See "The Downfall of Robert Earl of Huntington," _Introd_. pp. 95,
 See "Restituta," ii. 367 (note).
 "Bibl. Poet." 159. [But see Hazlitt's "Handbook," v. C. II.]
 [Henslowe's "Diary," 1845, p. 147. See also Collier's "Memoirs of
the Actors in Shakespeare's Plays," p. 111.]
 Introduction to "Downfall of Robert Earl of Huntington," pp. 101,
 With the letters R.A. on the title-page. [But surely it is very
doubtful whether the play printed in 1615 (and again in 1663) is the
same as that mentioned by Henslowe.]
 [Unless it be the drama printed in 1604 under the title of the
"Wit of a Woman."]
 [Possibly a revival, with alterations, of Edwardes' play.]
 There is no list of characters prefixed to the old 4to.
 i.e., Skelton, who is supposed by the author to have acted the
part of Friar Tuck, and who, when first he comes on the stage, is
without his gown and hood.
 [Old copy, _Hurt_. The two are inside plotting together. See
 [The Queen Mother.]
 _Wight_ means _active_, or (sometimes) _clever_. It may be matter
of conjecture whether "_white_ boy," "_white_ poet," "_white_ villain,"
&c., so often found in old dramatists, have not this origin.
 It is very obvious that Much begins his answer at "Cry ye mercy,
Master King," but his name is omitted in the old 4to.
 The old copy adds here _Exeunt_, and a new scene is marked; but
this is a mistake, as Robin Hood just afterwards converses with the
Prior, Sir Doncaster, and Warman, without any new entrance on their
part. They retire to the back of the stage.
 Warman is not mentioned, but we find him on the stage just
afterwards, and he probably enters with Robin Hood. The entrance of
Friar Tuck is also omitted.
 i.e., Winding his horn.
 The 4to, reads "Pity of _mind_, thine," &c.
 See the last scene of the first part of this play.
 The 4to merely reads _exit_.
 "And yet more medicinal is it than that _Moly_
That Hermes once to wise Ulysses gave."
There are several kinds of moly, and one of them distinguished among
horticulturists as Homer's moly. Sir T. Brown thus quaintly renders two
lines in the "Odyssey" relating to it--
"The gods it _Moly_ call whose root to dig away
Is dangerous unto man, but gods they all things may."
 [Old copy, _whindling_. See Halliwell, _v. Whimlen_. There is also
_windilling_; but the word is one of those terms of contempt used by
early writers rather loosely.]
 These two lines are taken, with a slight change, from the ballad
of "The Jolly Finder of Wakefield." See Ritson's "Robin Hood," ii. 16--
"In Wakefleld there lives a jolly pinder,
In Wakefield all on a green," &c.
 [Old copy, _monuments_.]
 Ritson ("Notes and Illustrations to Robin Hood," i. 62) observes
correctly that Fitzwater confounds one man with another, and that Harold
Harefoot was the son and successor of Canute the Great.
 [Old copy, _them_.]
 "_In_ a trice" is the usual expression. See a variety of instances
collected by Mr Todd in his Dictionary, but none of them have it "_with_
a trice," as in this place. The old copy prints the ordinary
abbreviation for _with_, which may have been misread by the printer.
[_With_ is no doubt wrong, and has been altered.]
 The scenes are marked, though incorrectly, in the old copy thus
far; but the rest of the play is only divided by the _exits_ or
entrances of the characters.
 Jenny, a country wench, uses the old word _straw'd_; but when the
author speaks afterwards in the stage direction, he describes Marian as
"_strewing_ flowers." Shakespeare has _o'er-strawed_ in "Venus and
Adonis," perhaps for the sake of the rhyme.
 [i.e., Over.]
 [Old copy, _of_.]
 Formerly considered an antidote for poison. Sir Thomas Brown was
not prepared to contradict it: he says, that "Lapis Lasuli hath in it a
purgative faculty, we know: that _Bezoar is antidotal_, Lapis Judaicus
diuretical, Coral antipileptical, we will not deny."--"Vulgar Errors,"
edit. 1658, p. 104. He also (p. 205) calls it the _Bezoar nut_, "for,
being broken, it discovereth a kernel of a leguminous smell and taste,
bitter, like a lupine, and will swell and sprout if set in the ground."
Harts-horn shavings were also considered a preservative against poison.
 [From what follows presently it may be inferred that the king
temporarily retires, although his exit or withdrawal is not marked.]
 The old word for _convent_: Covent-Garden, therefore, is still
 The _grate_ of a vintner was no doubt what is often termed in old
writers the _red lattice, lettice_, or _chequers_, painted at the doors
of vintners, and still preserved at almost every public-house. See note
24 to "The Miseries of Enforced Marriage."
 The 4to reads--
"In the highway
That joineth to the _power_."
 Robin Hood advises his uncle to insist upon his plea of
_privilegium clericale_, or benefit of clergy--
"Stand to your clergy, uncle; save your life."
"Originally the law was held that no man should be admitted to the
privilege of clergy, but such as had the _habitum et tonsuram
clericalem_. But in process of time a much wider and more comprehensive
criterion was established; every one that could read (a mark of great
learning in those days of ignorance and her sister superstition) being
accounted a clerk or _clericus_, and allowed the benefit of clerkship,
though neither initiated in holy orders, nor trimmed with the clerical
tonsure."--Blackstone's "Com.," iv. b. iv, ch. 28. We have already seen
that the king and nobles in this play called in the aid of Friar Tuck to
read the inscription on the stag's collar, though the king could
ascertain that it was in Saxon characters.
 This account of the death of Robin Hood varies from all the
popular narratives and ballads. The MS. Sloan, 715, nu. 7, f. 157,
agrees with the ballad in Ritson, ii. 183, that he was treacherously
bled to death by the Prioress of Kirksley.
 The first act has already occupied too much space, but it was
difficult to divide it: in fact, as Friar Tuck says, it is a "short
play," complete in itself. What follows is an induction to the rest of
the story, the Friar continuing on the stage after the others have gone
 The 4to. reads thus--
"Apollo's _master doone_ I invocate,"
but probably we ought to read--
"Apollo's _masterdom_ I invocate,"
and the text has been altered accordingly. _Masterdom_ means _power,
rule_; to invocate Apollo's masterdom is therefore to invocate Apollo's
power to assist the Friar in his undertaking.
 _Enter in black_ is the whole of the stage direction, and those
who enter are afterwards designated by the letters _Cho_. Perhaps the
principal performers arrive attired in black, and are mentioned as
_Chorus_, one speaking for the rest. _Cho_. may, however, be a misprint
for _Chester_, who was sent in to "attire him."
 [In the new edit. of Nares the present passage is cited for
_ill-part_, which is queried to mean _ill-conditioned_. Perhaps it is
equivalent to _malapert_.]
 [Old copy, _de Brun_.] "John married Isabel, the daughter and
heiress of the Earl of Angoulesme, who was before affianced to _Hugh le
Brun_, Earl of March (a peer of great estate and excellence in France),
by the consent of King Richard, in whose custody she then was."
--Daniel's "History of England."
 [Old copy, _lose_.]
 _Led by the F.K. and L_. means, as afterwards appears, the _French
king_, and _Lord_ Hugh le Brun, Earl of North March.
 The entrance of Bonville is omitted in the 4to.
 These _Lords_, as we afterwards find, are old Aubrey de Vere,
Hubert, and Mowbray.
 [Old copy, _troops_.]
 [Old copy, _triumphs_.]
 Lodge was in the habit of using the adjective for the substantive,
especially _fair_ for _fairness_; one example is enough--
"Some, well I wot, and of that sum full many,
Wisht or my _faire_ or their desire were lesse."
--_Scilla's Metamorphosis_, 1589.
See also note to "The Wounds of Civil War" (vol. vii. p. 118).
Shakespeare may be cited in many places besides the following--
"My decayed _fair_
A sunny look of his would soon repair."
--_Comedy of Errors_, act ii. sc. 1.
See Steevens's note on the above passage.
 The King calls him in the old copy _good Oxford_, but Oxford is
not present, and from what follows we see that the command was given to
Salisbury. The same mistake is again made by Hubert in this scene.
Salisbury must be pronounced _Sal'sb'ry_.
 [Old copy, _muddy_.]
 [A very unusual phrase, which seems to be used here in the sense
of _masculine passions or properties_.]
 In the old copy it stands thus--
"Yes, but I do: I think not Isabel, Lord,
The worse for any writing of Brunes."
[In the MS. both Lord and Le were probably abbreviated into L., and
hence the misprint, as well as misplacement, in the first line.]
 [i.e., You may count on her wealth as yours. We now say to build
_on_, but to build _of_ was formerly not unusual.]
 See the notes of Dr Johnson, Steevens, and other commentators on
the words in the "Comedy of Errors," act ii. sc. 1--"Poor I am but his
_stale_." [See also Dyce's "Shakespeare Glossary," 1868, in v.]
 The stage directions are often given very confusedly, and (taken
by themselves) unintelligibly, in the old copy, of which this instance
may serve as a specimen: it stands thus in the 4to--"_Enter Fitzwater
and his son Bruce, and call forth his daughter_."
 [A feeder of the Wye. Lewis's "Book of English Rivers," 1855,
 Alluding most likely to the "Andria" of Terence, which had been
translated [thrice] before this play was acted; the first time [in 1497,
again about 1510, and the third time] by Maurice Kiffin in 1588. [The
former two versions were anonymous. See Hazlitt's "Handbook," p. 605.]
 _Holidom_ or _halidom_, according to Minsheu (Dict. 1617), is "an
old word used by old country-women, by manner of swearing by my
_halidome_; of the Saxon word _haligdome, ex halig, sanctum_, and _dome,
dominium aut judicium_." Shakespeare puts it into the mouth of the host
in the "Two Gentlemen of Verona," act iv. sc. 2.
 The entrance of Richmond clearly takes place here, but in the 4to
he is said to come in with Leicester.
 [See Hazlitt's "Proverbs," p. 22.]
 [In the 4to and former editions this and the following nine words
are given to Richmond.]
 Meaning that her father Fitzwater [takes her, she having declined
to pair off with the king.] The whole account of the mask is confused in
the old copy, and it is not easy to make it much more intelligible in
 [The proverb is: "There are more maids than Malkin." See Hazlitt's
"Proverbs," p. 392.]
 [Old copy, _Had_.]
 This line will remind the reader of Shakespeare's "multitudinous
seas incarnardine," in "Macbeth," act ii. sc. 1.
 This answer unquestionably belongs to the king, and is not, as the
4to gives it, a part of what Leicester says. It opens with an allusion
to the crest of Leicester, similar to that noticed in the "Downfall of
Robert Earl of Huntington."
 [Old copy, _by God's_.]
 [Old copy, _armed men_.]
 [Old copy, _shall_.]
 [An allusion to the proverb.]
 This and other passages refer probably to the old play of "King
John," printed in 1591, [or to Shakespeare's own play which, though not
printed till 1623, must have been familiar to the public, and more
especially to dramatic authors.]
 In this line; in the old copy, _Salisbury_ is made to call himself
 The 4to reads _Enter or above Hugh, Winchester. Enter or above_
means, that they may either enter on the stage, or stand above on the
battlements, as may suit the theatre. With regard to the names _Hugh_
and _Winchester_, they are both wrong; they ought to be _Hubert_ and
_Chester_, who have been left by the king to _keep good watch_. When,
too, afterwards Chester asks--
"What, Richmond, will you prove a runaway?"--
the answer in the old copy is--
"From thee, good _Winchester_? now, the Lord defend!"
It ought to be--
"From thee, good _Chester_? now the Lord defend!"
And it is clear that the measure requires it. The names throughout are
very incorrectly given, and probably the printer composed from a copy in
which some alterations had been made in the _dramatis personae_, but
incompletely. Hence the perpetual confusion of _Salisbury_ and _Oxford_.
 The scene changes from the outside to the inside of the castle.
 [Without muscle, though muscle and bristle are strictly distinct.]
 To _tire_ is a term in falconry: from the Fr. _tirer_, in
reference to birds of prey tearing what they take to pieces.
 The 4to prints _Ilinnus_.
 [Old copy, _a deed_.]
 The 4to has it _Elinor_, but it ought to be _Isabel_. The previous
entrance of the Queen and Matilda is not marked.
 [_Fairness_, in which sense the word has already occurred in this
 [i.e., Champion.]
 Matilda's name is omitted in the old copy, but the errors of this
kind are too numerous to be always pointed out.
 [Old copy, _Triumvirates_.]
 Nothing can more clearly show the desperate confusion of names in
this play than this line, which in the 4to stands--
"It's Lord _Hugh Burgh_ alone: _Hughberr_, what newes?"
In many places Hubert is only called _Hugh_.
 Company or collection.
 _Head of hungry wolves_ is the reading of the original copy: a
"_herd_" of hungry wolves would scarcely be proper, but it may have been
so written. [_Head_ may be right, and we have not altered it, as the
word is occasionally used to signify a gathering or force.]
 In the old copy the four following lines are given to King John.
 [Old copy, _warres_.]
 [Old copy, _prepare_.]
 This word is found in "Henry VI., Part II." act v. sc. 1, where
young Clifford applies it to Richard. Malone observes in a note, that,
according to Bullokar's "English Expositor," 1616, _stugmatick_
originally and properly signified "a person who has been _branded_ with
a hot iron for some crime." The name of the man to whom Hubert here
applies the word, is _Brand_.
Webster, in his "Vittoria Corombona," applies the term
"The god of melancholy turn thy gall to poison,
And let the _stigmatic_ wrinkles in thy face.
Like to the boisterous wares in a rough tide,
One still overtake another."
 [Are faulty.]
 [Old copy, _seld_.]
 [The printer has made havoc with the sense here, which can only be
guessed at from the context. Perhaps for _go_ we should read _God_, in
allusion to the woman's protestations. Yet even then the passage reads
 [_These_ may be right; but perhaps the author wrote _his_. By
his--i.e., God's--nails, is a very common oath.]
 [i.e., Mete or measure out a reward to her.]
 [To swear by the fingers, or the _ten commandments_, as they were
often called, was a frequent oath.]
 [Old copy, _lamback'd_.]
 The 4to says, _between the monk and the nun_.
 [Query, _mother Bawd_; or is some celebrated procuress of the time
when this play was written and acted meant here?]
 To swear by the cross of the sword was a very common practice, and
many instances are to be found in D.O.P. See also notes to "Hamlet," act
i. sc. 5.
 i.e., Secretly, a very common application of the word in our old
 [In allusion to the proverb, "Maids say nay, and take."]
 Here, according to what follows, Brand steps forward and addresses
Matilda. Hitherto he has spoken _aside_.
 See Mr Gilford's note on the words _rouse_ and _carouse_ in his
Massinger, i. 239. It would perhaps be difficult, and certainly
needless, to add anything to it.
 "Nor I to stir before I see the end,"
belongs to the queen, unquestionably, but the 4to gives it to the
Abbess, who has already gone out.
 [Labour, pain.]
 The reading of the old copy is--
"Oh _pity, mourning_ sight! age pitiless!"
_Pity-moving_ in a common epithet, and we find it afterwards in this