페이지 이미지

call attention to some of these, premising that, wherever a passage has received assistance in my text (that of the Folio) from the Quarto, the words so introduced have been marked off with brackets, as is done by the Cambridge editors. This has been done in three cases: at the words "for missing your meetings and appointments" (III. i. 91), at "Give me thy hand, terrestrial; so" (III. i. 107), and at "to say my prayers" (IV. v. 106). In these particular instances we are to suppose these words have accidentally dropped out of the Folio text, and we supply them from the Quarto. The Cambridge editors regard them as absolutely essential. The middle one of these three is, in my opinion, the only one that is "absolutely essential," but the others are a very helpful improvement, which might be said of several passages inserted by former editors from the Quarto, not, however, by any means so emphatically. In most of those other cases the insertion is merely the personal option of one or other editor, which is a depreciation of the value of the Folio, and a licence to be steadily opposed. A few of these desirable passages may be set down here, for the others I must refer to my notes, as also for remarks upon those quoted here.

After line 129 (1. i.) the Quarto has, "They carried mee to the Tauerne and made mee drunke, and afterward picked my pocket." This may be regarded as an omission. At I. i. 294, the Quarto would read, "I cannot abide the smell of hot meate Nere since I broke my shin. Ile tell you how it came By my troth. A Fencer and I plaied three venies For a dish of stewed prunes, and I with my ward Defending my head, he hot my shin." This is a more intelligible fencing metaphor, but the Folio makes

Slender appear, as is intended, a greater fool. Moreover, it is in proper harmony with the passado and stockado fencing terms that the correct version jeers at.

corrupted for simplicity and brevity's sake.


At I. ii. II, after "pray you," Sir Hugh says in the Quarto, "I must not be absent at the grace. I will go make an end," etc. This perhaps belongs correctly to the text.

This remark

At I. iii. 25, after " wield," Nym's speech is, " His minde is not heroick: is not the humour conceited?" supplements and explains that in the Folio.

At I. iii. 98, Nym says, "operations in my head" in the Quarto. Pope considered the words "in my head" had been erroneously omitted.

At II. i. 71, Mrs. Page says in the Quarto, “O most notorious villaine! Why what a bladder of iniquitie is this." Falstaff elsewhere compares himself to a bladder in 1 Henry IV.

At II. i. 112, after "wife," the Quarto has, "When Pistoll lies do this," a continuation of Pistol's speech. Pistol makes this remark in 2 Henry IV. This, as well as the last, may be actors' insertions familiar with the dialogues of the earlier plays in the series.

At II. i. 181, Page says in the Quarto, "And for the knight, perhaps He hath spoke merrily, as the fashion of fat men Are." This remark is quite characteristic of Page's agreeable character, and is itself worthy of a place.

At II. ii. 2 in the Quarto, Pistol's words are, “I will retort the sum in equipage." Though not in the Folio text, these words are not merely of archaic interest. They are, I think, undoubtedly part of Pistol's speech as Shakespeare wrote it; whether altered or omitted, and where, it is impossible to speculate. For some remarkable dis

crepancies between Pistol's final disappearance from the play in the Quarto and Folio texts, see notes at II. ii. 32 And see below, where Pistol's position is con

and 144.

sidered with regard to Mrs. Quickly.

From about this point the Quarto seems to become more hastily compressed, and the difficulties are very often those of the inextricable tangle of times of the meetings. The divergence between the two texts increases, the omissions in the Quarto are more serious, and the replacements more widespread and deleterious. In general terms I have noticed the larger anomalies already; the details cannot be dealt with seriatim without parallel texts. The above quotations are sufficient to show that the Quarto text needs careful study. An exact comparative analysis would take up a deal of space, but it is most interesting. There is, indeed, need of self-restraint to resist the insertion of some of the above passages, in addition to those necessary ones already included. Nothing but an unswerving reverence for the Folio text enables one to withstand the temptation-a reverence that did not belong to the early commentators.

For further variations of interest, I must refer to my notes. See especially IV. v. 82, where I claim to have discovered the only Welsh passage yet found in Shakespeare! Two verbal differences must be referred to, however, of a different nature.

In I. i. 113, where the Folio reads "king," the Quarto has "council." This apparent reference to James is explained by Mr. Daniel as being neutralised by the "time of the play being laid in the reign of Henry IV.," which has, I think, a very distant bearing on the point. But he also

refers to the constant reference by Shallow to appeals to the "council," and that seems to me sufficient to prevent us from being in any way bound to believe it is an alteration in the Folio made to suit a later date in the reign of King James-as some have argued. Upon the same grounds (Henry IV. temp.) the editor of the Quarto attaches no importance to the words "king's English” (I. iv. 6), which have been again advanced in favour of a late date. As the passage there seems to be a direct echo from Nashe, who has it "Queen's English," the word may have been varied to "king" by the later editors of the Folio text. See my note at the passage. In proverbs relating to "king" or "queen," it is a mere accident, however, whether the word be altered or not to suit an existing monarch.

The Quarto text has now received its meed of attention. References to it will of necessity occur from time to time in this Introduction; but for the text itself, and its perplexing vagaries, the reader must refer to the facsimile by Griggs with Daniel's valuable introduction. Mr. Daniel points out a couple of omissions in the Quarto, leaving the sense unintelligible, which can be supplied from the Folio, showing its undoubted seniority, which is palpable in many places. Both Mr. Daniel's instances relate to Simple.


The text of the present edition is emphatically that of the Folio. The Quarto only appears in it upon sufferance, fenced in, in the three places referred to, by brackets. were it not for the weight of authorities against me, I should relegate those three sentences to the footnotes, and accept their assistance to intelligibility in that fashion as elsewhere throughout the play.

I have felt able to follow the Folio more closely, however, than any previous editor has done, in several places. Simply because after mature consideration I concluded that the Folio was right, and that the supposed emendations of the early commentators were wrong. For this I take credit, and hope to convince other Shakespearian scholars. One by one, those old Theobaldian "lunes" are bound to disappear and become ghosts, in this as in others of Shakespeare's plays. At first I felt disposed, indeed, to make considerable use of the Quarto, more so than I even dare to think of now. Gradually that view died. The slow poison of the debased text killed it. It was not so easy to dispense with the other variations (I incline to call them corruptions) from the Folio, but I hope I can disprove their merits in the following cases, the discussion upon which is noticed here in order to direct attention to them. They are all debatable ground.

I restore the Folio reading in the following passages. I give the Folio first, that of the Globe edition alongside. The instances are not to be taken as of equal importance. Some are trifling. Some are not. Nor are the proofs equally conclusive in all cases.

[blocks in formation]

It is a considerable wrench to get rid of the firmly estab

« 이전계속 »