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her brother in the parricide. What horror does this not raise ! Clytemnestra was a wicked woman, and had deserved to die ; nay, in the truth of the story, įhe was killed by her own fon; but to represent an action of this kind on the stage, is certainly an offence against those rules of manners proper to the persons, that ought to be observed there. On the contrary, let us only look a little on the conduct of Shakespeare. Hamlet is represented with the same piety towards his father, and resolution to revenge his death, as Orestes; he has the same abhorrence for his mother's guilt, which, to provoke him the more, is heightened by inceft: but it is with wonderful art and justness of judgment, that the poet restrains him from doing violence to his mother. To prevent any thing of that kind, he makes his father's Ghost forbid that part of his vengeance :
Bilt howsoever thou prorsust this act,
This is to diftinguish rightly between horror and terror. The latter is a proper paflion of tragedy, but the former oug!ıt always to be carefully avoided. And certainly no dramatick writer ever succeeded better in railing terror in the minds of an audience than Shakeipear: has done. The whole tragedy of Macbeth, but more especially the scene where the King is murdered, in the second act, as well as this play, is a noble proof of that manly spirit with which he writ; and both thew how powerful he was, in giving the ftrongest inotions to our souls that they are capable of. I cannot leave Hayilet, without taking notice of the advantage with which we have seen this master-piece of Shakespeare distinguish itself upon the stage, by
Mr. Betterton's fine performance of that part. A man, who, though he had no other good qualities, as he has a great many, must have made his way into the esteem of all men of letters, by this only excellency. No man is better acquainted with Shakespeare's manner of expression, and indeed he has studied him so well, and is so much a master of him, that whatever part of his he performs, he does it as if it had been written on purpose for him, and that the author had exactly conceived it as he plays it. I mult own a particular obligation to him, for the most considerable part of the passages relating to this life, which I have here transmitted to the publick ; his veneration for the memory of Shakespeare having engaged him to make a journey into Warwickshire, on purpose to gather up what remains he could, of a name for which he had so great a veneration.
The following Inftrument was transmitted to us
by John Anstis, Esq; Garter King at Arms ; It is mark'd G. 13. p. 349.
[There is also a Manuscript in the Heralds Office, mark'd
W. 2. p. 276; where Notice is taken of this Coat, and that the Person, to whom it was granted, bad borne Magistracy at Stratford upon Avon.)
10 all and singular noble and gentlemen of all
cftates and degrees, bearing arms, to whom thele presents shall come ; William Dethick, Garter Principal King of Arms of England, and William Camden, alias Clarencieulx, King of Arms for the south, east, and west parts of this realm, send greetings. Know ye, that in all nations and kingdoms the record and remembrance of the valiant facts and virtuous dispositions of worthy men have been made known and divulged by certain shields of arms and tokens of chivalrie; the grant or testimony whereof appertaineth unto us, by virtue of our offices from the Queen's moft Excellent Majesty, and her Highness's most noble and victorious progenitors : wherefore being solicited, and by credible report informed, that John Shakespere, now of Stratford upon Avon, in the county of Warwick, gentleman, whose great grandfather, for his faithful and approved service to the late most prudent prince, king Henry VII. of famous memory, was advanced and rewarded with lands and tenemenis, given to him in those parts of Warwickshire, where they have continued by some descents in good reputation and credit; and for that the said John Shakespere having married the daughter and one of the heirs of Robert Arden of Wellingcote, in the said county, and also produced this his ancient coat of arms, heretofore afligned to him whilst he
was her majesty's officer and bailiff of that town, In consideration of the premises, and for the encouragement of his posterity, unto whom such blazon of arms and archievements of inheritance from their faid mother, by the ancient custom and laws of arms, may lawfully descend; we the said Garter and Clarencieulx have alligned, granted, and confirmed, and by these presents exemplified unto the said John Shakespere, and to his posterity, that shield and coat of arms, viz. In a field of gold upon a bend sables a spear of the first, the point upward, headed argent; and for his crest or cognisance, A falcon, or, with his wings displayed, standing on a wreathe of his colours, supporting a Spear armed beaded, or steeled silver, fixed upon an helmet with mantles and tasfels, as more plainly may appear depicted in this margent; and we have likewise impaled the same with the ancient arms of the said Arden of Wellingcote; signifying thereby, that it may and shall be lawful for the said John Shakespere, gent. to bear and use the same shield of arms, single or impaled, as aforesaid, during his natural life ; and that it shall be lawful for his children, issue, and posterity, lawfully begotten, to bear, use, and quarter, and shew forth the same, with their due differences, in all lawful warlike feats and civil use or exercises, according to the laws of arms, and custom that to gentlemen belongeth, without let or interruption of any person or persons, for use or bearing the same. In witness and testimony whereof we have subscribed our names, and fastened the seals of our offices. Given at the office of arms, London, the
in the forty-second year of the reign of our most graçious sovereign lady Elizabeth, by the grace of God, queen of England, France, and Ireland, defender of the faith, &c. 1599.
SHAKE. Extracted from the Registry of the Archbishop
Vicesimo quinto die Martii Anno Regni Domini noftri
Jacobi nunc Regis Anglia, &c. decimo quarto
N the name of God, Amen. I William Shakespeare of Stratford upon Avon, in the county
of Warwick, gent. in perfect health and memory (God be praised) do make and ordain this my lait will and testament in manner and form following; that is to say :
First, I commend my soul into the hands of God my creator, hoping, and assuredly believing, through the only merits of Jesus Christ my Saviour, to be made partaker of life everlasting; and my body to the earth whereof that is made.
Item, I give and bequeath unto my daughter Judith one hundred and fifty pounds of lawful English money, to be paid unto her in manner and form following ; that is to say, one hundred pounds in discharge of her marriage portion within one year after my decease, with confiderations after the rate of two shillings in the pound for so long time as the same shall be unpaid unto her after my deceafe ; and the fifty pounds residue thereof, upon her furrendering of or giving of such sufficient security as the overseers of this my will ihall like of, to surrender or grant all her estate and right that fall descend or come unto her after my decease, or that she now hath of, in, or to one copyhold tenement, with the appurtenances, lying and being in Stratford upon Avon aforesaid, in the said county of Warwick, being parcel or holden of the