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introduces a genitive case, where, there is every reason to believe, Shakespeare did not intend one to occur ;
“ This apish and unmannerly approach,
This harness'd masque, and unadvised revel,
Besides, we may well doubt if any writer would or could use “unheard sauciness” for “unheard-of sauciness.”
“ Unhair'd sauciness" is, of course, unbearded sauciness; and (as I remarked in a former publication) Faulconbridge now expresses to the Dauphin that contempt for him and his forces, with which in the preceding scene he had spoken of him to the King ;
"shall a beardless boy,
Act v. sc. 1.
" thou most beauteous inn, Why should hard-favour'd grief be lodg'd in thee, When triumph is become an ale-house guest?”
Compare Dante, in the Vita Nuova ;
“O voi, che per la via d’Amor passate,
Attendete, e guardate
P. 9, ed. 1576.
The commentators pass over “ Yedward” without any remark.-It is a familiar corruption of “Edward," and, I believe, still retained in Cheshire and Lancashire.
Towards the end of the first act of Shadwell's Lancashire Witches, Clod, who speaks in the Lancashire dialect, uses “ Yedard” for “ Edward ;'.
“ Doubt. Whose house is that?
Clod. Why, what a pox, where han yeow lived ? why, yeow are strongers indeed! Why, 'tis Sir Yedard Hartfort's,” &c.
Act iii. sc. 2.
“rash bavin wits Soon kindled, and soon burn'd.”
The editors give no example of “ bavin" used adjectively. The following passage affords one ;
“Nay, M. Mamon, misinterpret not;
Jacke Drums Entertainement, sig. a 3, ed. 1616.
“ In the quartos of 1598 and 1599, heire' [of the folio] was haire, the old mode of spelling hair ; and this, the old corrector assures us, was the true word, the meaning of the speaker being (as suggested in note I), that the power he, and the other revolted lords could produce, was too small to allow of any division of it.” Collier's Notes and Emendations, &c. p. 237.
That “hair” is “the true word,” was probably never questioned by a single reader of the passage, with the exception of Boswell (who thought that “perhaps hair is put for air”), and of Mr. Knight (who inserts “air” in his text). That Mr. Collier is quite mistaken about “ the meaning of the speaker,” I have indisputably proved in Remarks on Collier's and Knight's eds. of Shakespeare, p. 108.
“ Warburton," writes Mr. Collier, “was of opinion that the poet meant that the odds were so great, that heaven might be wagered against earth, that many present would never embrace again. This is a mistake, according to the manuscript-corrector: Hotspur calls heaven and earth to witness to the improbability that some of those present would ever have an opportunity of regreeting each other :
• 'Fore heaven and earth, some of us never shall
Notes and Emendations, &c. p. 239.
In the first place :-“ 'Fore heaven" is a sort of petty oath which belongs to familiar dialogue (as in Othello, act ii. sc. 3, "'Fore heaven, they have given me a rouse," — "'Fore heaven, an excellent song"), and is therefore altogether at variance with the solemn tone of the present passage. In the second place :-if any one should urge that “the expression substituted by the Manuscript-corrector is not “Fore heaven,' but "'Fore heaven and earth?” (a very unusual expression indeed), and that “we find something similar in The Tempest, act iv. sc. 1,
. i afore heaven I ratify this my rich gift,'”
my answer is, that, even supposing “ 'Fore heaven and earth” to be a formula of attestation not inadmissible in a passage of the utmost seriousness, still we have what amounts almost to positive proof that Shakespeare did not employ it here; because the word “For,"—which the Manuscript-corrector converts into “ 'Fore,” —seems indispensably necessary to introduce the reason why they should all embrace on that occasion,
“ Sound all the lofty instruments of war,
And by that music let us all embrace ;