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The Jew of Malta by Christopher Marlowe

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<63> Turkish] Old ed. "Spanish."

<64> luff'd and tack'd] Old ed. "LEFT, and TOOKE."

<65> stated] i.e. estated, established, stationed.

<66> Enter OFFICERS, &c.] The scene being the market-place.

<67> Poor villains, such as were] Old ed. "SUCH AS poore
villaines were", &c.

<68> into] i.e. unto: see note †, p. 15.

"† into] Used here (as the word was formerly often used)
for UNTO.">

<69> city] The preceding editors have not questioned this word,
which I believe to be a misprint.

<70> foil'd]=filed, i.e. defiled.

<71> I'll have a saying to that nunnery] Compare Barnaby Barnes's

"Before I do this seruice, lie there, peece;
For I must HAUE A SAYING to those bottels. HE DRINKETH.
True stingo; stingo, by mine honour.* * *
* * * * * * * * * * * *
I must HAUE A SAYING to you, sir, I must, though you be
prouided for his Holines owne mouth; I will be bould to be
the Popes taster by his leaue." Sig. K 3.

<72> plates] "i.e. pieces of silver money." STEEVENS (apud
Dodsley's O. P.).--Old ed. "plats."

<73> Slave] To the speeches of this Slave the old ed. prefixes
"Itha." and "Ith.", confounding him with Ithamore.

<74> Lady Vanity] So Jonson in his FOX, act ii. sc. 3.,

"Get you a cittern, LADY VANITY,
And be a dealer with the virtuous man," &c.;

and in his DEVIL IS AN ASS, act i. sc. 1.,--

"SATAN. What Vice?
PUG. Why, any: Fraud,
Or Covetousness, or LADY VANITY,
Or old Iniquity."

<75> Katharine] Old ed. "MATER."--The name of Mathias's mother
was, as we afterwards learn, Katharine.

<76> stay] i.e. forbear, break off our conversation.

<77> was] Qy. "was BUT"?

<78> O, brave, master] The modern editors strike out the comma
after "BRAVE", understanding that word as an epithet to "MASTER":
but compare what Ithamore says to Barabas in act iv.: "That's
BRAVE, MASTER," p. 165, first col.

<79> your nose] An allusion to the large artificial nose, with
which Barabas was represented on the stage. See the passage
cited from W. Rowley's SEARCH FOR MONEY, 1609, in the ACCOUNT

<80> Ure] i.e. use, practice.

<81> a-good] "i.e. in good earnest. Tout de bon." REED (apud
Dodsley's O. P.).

<82> Enter LODOWICK] A change of scene supposed here,--to the
outside of Barabas's house.

<83> vow love to him] Old ed. "vow TO LOUE him": but compare,
in Barabas's next speech but one, "And she VOWS LOVE TO HIM," &c.

<84> made sure] i.e. affianced.

<85> Ludovico] Old ed. "Lodowicke."--In act iii. we have,
"I fear she knows--'tis so--of my device
In Don Mathias' and LODOVICO'S deaths." p. 162, sec. col.

<86> happily] i.e. haply.

<87> unsoil'd] "Perhaps we ought to read 'unfoil'd',
consistently with what Barabas said of her before under the
figure of a jewel--
'The diamond that I talk of NE'ER WAS FOIL'D'."
COLLIER (apud Dodsley's O. P.). But see that passage, p. 155,
sec. col., and note ‡.

<88> cross] i.e. piece of money (many coins being marked with a
cross on one side).

<89> thou] Old ed. "thee."

<90> resolv'd] "i.e. satisfied." GILCHRIST (apud Dodsley's
O. P.).

<91> Enter BELLAMIRA] She appears, we may suppose, in a veranda
or open portico of her house (that the scene is not the interior
of the house, is proved by what follows).

<92> Enter MATHIAS.
MATHIAS. This is the place, &c.] The scene is some pert of the
town, as Barabas appears "ABOVE,"--in the balcony of a house.
(He stood, of course, on what was termed the upper-stage.)

Old ed. thus;

Math. This is the place, now Abigail shall see
Whether Mathias holds her deare or no.
Enter Lodow. reading.
Math. What, dares the villain write in such base terms?

Lod. I did it, and reuenge it if thou dar'st."

<93> Lodovico] Old ed. "Lodowicke."--See note *, p. 158.note 85.>

<94> tall] i.e. bold, brave.

<95> What sight is this!] i.e. What A sight is this! Our early
writers often omit the article in such exclamations: compare
Shakespeare's JULIUS CAESAR, act i. sc. 3, where Casca says,


(after which words the modern editors improperly retain the
interrogation-point of the first folio).

<96> Lodovico] Old ed. "Lodowicke."

<97> These arms of mine shall be thy sepulchre] So in
Shakespeare's THIRD PART OF KING HENRY VI., act ii. sc. 5,
the Father says to the dead Son whom he has killed in battle,

"THESE ARMS OF MINE shall be thy winding-sheet;
My heart, sweet boy, SHALL BE THY SEPULCHRE,"--

lines, let me add, not to be found in THE TRUE TRAGEDIE OF
RICHARD DUKE OF YORKE, on which Shakespeare formed that play.

<98> Katharine] Old ed. "Katherina."

<99> Enter ITHAMORE] The scene a room in the house of Barabas.

<100> held in hand] i.e. kept in expectation, having their hopes

<101> bottle-nosed] See note †, p. 157.

<102> Jaques] Old ed. "Iaynes."

<103> sire] Old ed. "sinne" (which, modernised to "sin", the
editors retain, among many other equally obvious errors of the
old copy).

<104> As] Old ed. "And."

<105> Enter BARABAS] The scene is still within the house of
Barabas; but some time is supposed to have elapsed since the
preceding conference between Abigail and Friar Jacomo.

<106> pretendeth] Equivalent to PORTENDETH; as in our author's
FIRST BOOK OF LUCAN, "And which (ay me) ever PRETENDETH ill," &c.

<107> self] Old ed. "life" (the compositor's eye having caught
"life" in the preceding line).

<108> 'less] Old ed. "least."

<109> Well said] See note *, p. 69.

"* Well said] Equivalent to--Well done! as appears from
innumerable passages of our early writers: see, for
instances, my ed. of Beaumont and Fletcher's WORKS, vol. i.
328, vol. ii. 445, vol. viii. 254.">

<110> the proverb says, &c.] A proverb as old as Chaucer's time:
see the SQUIERES TALE, v. 10916, ed. Tyrwhitt.

<111> batten] i.e. fatten.

<112> pot] Old ed. "plot."

<113> thou shalt have broth by the eye] "Perhaps he means--thou
shalt SEE how the broth that is designed for thee is made, that
no mischievous ingredients enter its composition. The passage
is, however, obscure." STEEVENS (apud Dodsley's O. P.).--"BY THE
EYE" seems to be equivalent to--in abundance. Compare THE CREED
of Piers Ploughman:
"Grey grete-heded quenes
With gold BY THE EIGHEN."
v. 167, ed. Wright (who has no note on the expression): and
Beaumont and Fletcher's KNIGHT OF THE BURNING PESTLE, act ii.
sc. 2; "here's money and gold BY TH' EYE, my boy." In Fletcher's
BEGGARS' BUSH, act iii. sc. 1, we find, "Come, English beer,
hostess, English beer BY THE BELLY!"

<114> In few] i.e. in a few words, in short.

<115> hebon] i.e. ebony, which was formerly supposed to be a
deadly poison.

<116> Enter FERNEZE, &c.] The scene is the interior of the

<117> basso] Old ed. "Bashaws" (the printer having added an S
by mistake), and in the preceding stage-direction, and in the
fifth speech of this scene, "Bashaw": but in an earlier scene
(see p. 148, first col.) we have "bassoes" (and see our author's

"Enter FERNEZE governor of Malta, KNIGHTS, and OFFICERS;
met by CALYMATH, and BASSOES of the TURK.">

<118> the resistless banks] i.e. the banks not able to resist.

<119> basilisks] See note ‡, p. 25.

"basilisks] Pieces of ordnance so called. They were of
immense size; see Douce's ILLUST. OF SHAKESPEARE, i. 425.">

<120> Enter FRIAR JACOMO, &c.] Scene, the interior of the

<121> convers'd with me] She alludes to her conversation with
Jacomo, p. 162, sec. col.

"ABIGAIL. Welcome, grave friar.--Ithamore, be gone.
Know, holy sir, I am bold to solicit thee.
FRIAR JACOMO. Wherein?">

<122> envied] i.e. hated.

<123> practice] i.e. artful contrivance, stratagem.

<124> crucified a child] A crime with which the Jews were often
charged. "Tovey, in his ANGLIA JUDAICA, has given the several
instances which are upon record of these charges against the
Jews; which he observes they were never accused of, but at such
times as the king was manifestly in great want of money." REED
(apud Dodsley's O. P.).

<125> Enter BARABAS, &c.] Scene a street.

<126> to] Which the Editor of 1826 deliberately altered to
"like," means--compared to, in comparison of.

<127> Cazzo] Old ed. "catho."--See Florio's WORLDE OF WORDES
(Ital. and Engl. Dict.) ed. 1598, in v.--"A petty oath, a cant
exclamation, generally expressive, among the Italian populace,
who have it constantly in their mouth, of defiance or contempt."
Gifford's note on Jonson's WORKS, ii. 48.

<128> nose] See note †, p. 157.

<129> inmate] Old ed. "inmates."

<130> the burden of my sins
Lie heavy, &c.] One of the modern editors altered "LIE" to
"Lies": but examples of similar phraseology,--of a nominative
singular followed by a plural verb when a plural genitive
intervenes,--are common in our early writers; see notes on
Beaumont and Fletcher's WORKS, vol. v. 7, 94, vol. ix. 185,
ed. Dyce.

<131> sollars] "i.e. lofts, garrets." STEEVENS (apud Dodsley's
O. P.).

<132> untold] i.e. uncounted.--Old ed. "vnsold."

<133> BARABAS. This is mere frailty: brethren, be content.--
Friar Barnardine, go you with Ithamore:
You know my mind; let me alone with him.

FRIAR JACOMO. Why does he go to thy house? let him be gone]

Old ed. thus;
"BAR. This is meere frailty, brethren, be content.
Fryar Barnardine goe you with Ithimore.
ITH. You know my mind, let me alone with him;
Why does he goe to thy house, let him begone."

<134> the Turk] "Meaning Ithamore." COLLIER (apud Dodsley's
O. P.). Compare the last line but one of Barabas's next speech.

<135> covent] i.e. convent.

<136> Therefore 'tis not requisite he should live] Lest the
reader should suspect that the author wrote,
"Therefore 'tis requisite he should not live,"
I may observe that we have had before (p. 152, first col.)
a similar form of expression,--
"It is not necessary I be seen."

<137> fair] See note §, p. 15.<'15' sic.>

"In fair, &c.] Here "FAIR" is to be considered as a
dissyllable: compare, in the Fourth act of our author's
"I'll feast you, lodge you, give you FAIR words,
And, after that," &c.">

<138> shall be done] Here a change of scene is supposed, to the
interior of Barabas's house.

<139> Friar, awake] Here, most probably, Barabas drew a curtain,
and discovered the sleeping Friar.

<140> have] Old ed. "saue."

<141> What time o' night is't now, sweet Ithamore?
ITHAMORE. Towards one] Might be adduced, among other
passages, to shew that the modern editors are right when they
print in Shakespeare's KING JOHN. act iii. sc. 3,
"If the midnight bell
Did, with his iron tongue and brazen mouth,
Sound ONE into the drowsy ear of NIGHT," &c.

<142> Enter FRIAR JACOMO] The scene is now before Barabas's
house,--the audience having had to SUPPOSE that the body of
Barnardine, which Ithamore had set upright, was standing
outside the door.

<143> proceed] Seems to be used here as equivalent to--succeed.

<144> on's] i.e. of his.

<145> Enter BELLAMIRA, &c.] The scene, as in p. 160, a veranda
or open portico of Bellamira's house.

" Enter BELLAMIRA.<91>
BELLAMIRA. Since this town was besieg'd," etc.>

<146> tall] Which our early dramatists generally use in the
sense of--bold, brave (see note ‡, p. 161), is
here perhaps equivalent to--handsome. ("Tall or SEMELY." PROMPT.
PARV. ed. 1499.)

<147> neck-verse] i.e. the verse (generally the beginning of the
51st Psalm, MISERERE MEI, &c.) read by a criminal to entitle him
to benefit of clergy.

<148> of] i.e. on.

<149> exercise] i.e. sermon, preaching.

<150> with a muschatoes] i.e. with a pair of mustachios. The
modern editors print "with MUSTACHIOS," and "with a MUSTACHIOS":
but compare,--

"My Tuskes more stiffe than are a Cats MUSCHATOES."
S. Rowley's NOBLE SPANISH SOLDIER, 1634, Sig. C.

"His crow-black MUCHATOES."
THE BLACK BOOK,--Middleton's WORKS, v. 516, ed. Dyce.

<151> Turk of tenpence] An expression not unfrequently used by
our early writers. So Taylor in some verses on Coriat;
"That if he had A TURKE OF TENPENCE bin," &c.
WORKES, p. 82, ed. 1630.
And see note on Middleton's WORKS, iii. 489, ed. Dyce.

<152> you know] Qy. "you know, SIR,"?

<153> I'll make him, &c.] Old ed. thus:
"I'le make him send me half he has, & glad he scapes so too.
I'll write vnto him, we'le haue mony strait."
There can be no doubt that the words "Pen and inke" were a
direction to the property-man to have those articles on the

<154> cunning] i.e. skilfully prepared.--Old ed. "running."
(The MAIDS are supposed to hear their mistress' orders WITHIN.)

<155> Shalt live with me, and be my love] A line, slightly
varied, of Marlowe's well-known song. In the preceding line,
the absurdity of "by Dis ABOVE" is, of course, intentional.

<156> beard] Old ed. "sterd."

<157> give me a ream of paper: we'll have a kingdom of gold
for't] A quibble. REALM was frequently written ream; and
frequently (as the following passages shew), even when the
former spelling was given, the L was not sounded;

"Vpon the siluer bosome of the STREAME
First gan faire Themis shake her amber locks,
Whom all the Nimphs that waight on Neptunes REALME
Attended from the hollowe of the rocks."
Lodge's SCILLAES METAMORPHOSIS, &c. 1589, Sig. A 2.

"How he may surest stablish his new conquerd REALME,
How of his glorie fardest to deriue the STREAME."
A HERINGS TAYLE, &c. 1598, Sig. D 3.

"Learchus slew his brother for the crowne;
So did Cambyses fearing much the DREAME;
Antiochus, of infamous renowne,
His brother slew, to rule alone the REALME."
MIROUR FOR MAGISTRATES, p. 78, ed. 1610.

<158> runs division] "A musical term [of very common
occurrence]." STEEVENS (apud Dodsley's O. P.).

<159> Enter BARABAS] The scene certainly seems to be now the
interior of Barabas's house, notwithstanding what he presently
says to Pilia-Borza (p. 171, sec. col.), "Pray, when, sir, shall
I see you at my house?"

<160> tatter'd] Old ed. "totter'd": but in a passage of our
author's EDWARD THE SECOND the two earliest 4tos have "TATTER'D
robes":--and yet Reed in a note on that passage (apud Dodsley's
OLD PLAYS, where the reading of the third 4to, "tottered robes",
is followed) boldly declares that "in every writer of this
period the word was spelt TOTTERED"! The truth is, it was spelt
sometimes one way, sometimes the other.

<161> catzery] i.e. cheating, roguery. It is formed from CATSO
(CAZZO, see note *, p. 166 ), which our early
writers used, not only as an exclamation, but as an opprobrious

<162> cross-biting] i.e. swindling (a cant term).--Something has
dropt out here.

<163> tale] i.e. reckoning.

<164> what he writes for you] i.e. the hundred crowns to be
given to the bearer: see p. 170, sec. col.

--Tell him I must have't.">

<165> I should part] Qy. "I E'ER should part"?

<166> rid] i.e. despatch, destroy.

<167> Enter BELLAMIRA, &c.] They are supposed to be sitting in
a veranda or open portico of Bellamira's house: see note *,
p. 168.

<168> Of] i.e. on.

<169> BELLAMIRA.] Old ed. "Pil."

<170> Rivo Castiliano] The origin of this Bacchanalian
exclamation has not been discovered. RIVO generally is used
alone; but, among passages parallel to that of our text, is
the following one (which has been often cited),--
"And RYUO will he cry and CASTILE too."
LOOKE ABOUT YOU, 1600, Sig. L. 4.
A writer in THE WESTMINSTER REVIEW, vol. xliii. 53, thinks that
it "is a misprint for RICO-CASTELLANO, meaning a Spaniard
belonging to the class of RICOS HOMBRES, and the phrase
therefore is--
'Hey, NOBLE CASTILIAN, a man's a man!'
'I can pledge like a man and drink like a man, MY WORTHY TROJAN;'
as some of our farce-writers would say." But the frequent
occurrence of RIVO in various authors proves that it is NOT
a misprint.

<171> he] Old ed. "you".

<172> and he and I, snicle hand too fast, strangled a friar]
There is surely some corruption here. Steevens (apud Dodsley's
O. P.) proposes to read "hand TO FIST". Gilchrist (ibid.)
observes, "a snicle is a north-country word for a noose, and
when a person is hanged, they say he is snicled." See too,
DIALECT.--The Rev. J. Mitford proposes the following (very
violent) alteration of this passage;
"Itha. I carried the broth that poisoned the nuns; and he
and I--
Pilia. Two hands snickle-fast--
Itha. Strangled a friar."

<173> incony] i.e. fine, pretty, delicate.--Old ed. "incoomy."

<174> they stink like a hollyhock] "This flower, however, has
no offensive smell. STEEVENS (apud Dodsley's O. P.). Its
odour resembles that of the poppy.

<175> mushrooms] For this word (as, indeed, for most words) our
early writers had no fixed spelling. Here the old ed. has
"Mushrumbs": and in our author's EDWARD THE SECOND, the 4tos
have "mushrump."

<176> under the elder when he hanged himself] That Judas hanged
himself on an elder-tree, was a popular legend. Nay, the very
tree was exhibited to the curious in Sir John Mandeville's days:
"And faste by, is zit the Tree of Eldre, that Judas henge him
self upon, for despeyt that he hadde, whan he solde and betrayed
oure Lorde." VOIAGE AND TRAVAILE, &c. p. 112. ed. 1725. But,
according to Pulci, Judas had recourse to a carob-tree:
"Era di sopra a la fonte UN CARRUBBIO,
MORGANTE MAG. C. xxv. st. 77.

<177> nasty] Old ed. "masty."

<178> me] Old ed. "we".

<179> Enter Ferneze, &c.] Scene, the interior of the Council-

<180> him] Qy. "'em"?

<181> Exeunt all, leaving Barabas on the floor] Here the audience
were to suppose that Barabas had been thrown over the walls, and
that the stage now represented the outside of the city.

<182> Bassoes] Here old ed. "Bashawes." See note §, p. 164.

<183> trench] A doubtful reading.--Old ed. "Truce."--"Query
'sluice'? 'TRUCE' seems unintelligible." COLLIER (apud Dodsley's
O. P.).--The Rev. J. Mitford proposes "turret" or "tower."

<184> channels] i.e. kennels.

<185> Enter CALYMATH, &c.] Scene, an open place in the city.

<186> vail] i.e. lower, stoop.

<187> To kept] i.e. To have kept.

<188> Entreat] i.e. Treat.

<189> Bassoes] Here old ed. "Bashawes." See note §, p. 164.

<190> Thus hast thou gotten, &c.] A change of scene is supposed
here--to the Citadel, the residence of Barabas as governor.

<191> Whenas] i.e. When.

<192> Within here] The usual exclamation is "Within THERE!" but
compare THE HOGGE HATH LOST HIS PEARLE (by R. Tailor), 1614;
"What, ho! within HERE!" Sig. E 2.

<193> sith] i.e. since.

<194> cast] i.e. plot, contrive.

<195> Bassoes] Here and afterwards old ed. "Bashawes." See note
§, p. 164.--Scene, outside the walls of the

<196> basilisk[s] See note ‡, p. 25.

"‡ basilisks] Pieces of ordnance so called. They were of
immense size; see Douce's ILLUST. OF SHAKESPEARE, i. 425.">

<197> And, toward Calabria, &c.] So the Editor of 1826.--Old ed.
"And toward Calabria back'd by Sicily,
Two lofty Turrets that command the Towne.
WHEN Siracusian Dionisius reign'd;
I wonder how it could be conquer'd thus?"

<198> Enter FERNEZE, &c.] Scene, a street.

<199> linstock] "i.e. the long match with which cannon are
fired." STEEVENS (apud Dodsley's O. P.).

<200> Enter, above, &c.] Scene, a hall in the Citadel, with a

<201> FIRST CARPENTER.] Old ed. here "Serv."; but it gives
"CARP." as the prefix to the second speech after this.

<202> off] An interpolation perhaps.

<203> sun] Old ed. "summe."

<204> ascend] Old ed. "attend."

<205> A charge sounded within: FERNEZE cuts the cord; the floor
of the gallery gives way, and BARABAS falls into a caldron
placed in a pit.

Old ed. has merely "A charge, the cable cut, A Caldron

<206> Christian] Old ed. "Christians."

<207> train] i.e. stratagem.

<208> pretended] i.e. intended.

<209> mediate] Old ed. "meditate."

<210> all] Old ed. "call."

Comments on the preparation of the E-Text:


Any place where angle brackets are used, i.e. < >, it is
a change made during the preparation of this E-Text. The
original printed book did not use this character at all.


The square brackets, i.e. [ ] are copied from the printed book,
without change, except that the stage directions usually do not
have closing brackets. These have been added.


For this E-Text version of the book, the footnotes have been
consolidated at the end of the play.

Numbering of the footnotes has been changed, and each footnote
is given a unique identity in the form .


Character names were expanded. For Example, BARABAS was BARA.,
FERNEZE was FERN., etc.

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