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Philip and Weller hugging

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-- Philip Weller, November 13, 1941 - February 1, 2021
Dr. Weller, an Eastern Washington University professor of English and Shakespearean scholar for more than 50 years.

Twelfth Night: Act 2, Scene 3

           Enter SIR TOBY BELCH and SIR ANDREW.

  1   Approach, Sir Andrew: not to be abed after
  2   midnight is to be up betimes; and 'diluculo
2. betimes: in good time. diluculo surgere: (The first two words of a Latin maxim which says, To get up at dawn is very healthful.)

  3   surgere,' thou know'st, —

  4   Nay, my troth, I know not: but I know, to be up
4. by my troth: on my word.

  5   late is to be up late.

  6   A false conclusion: I hate it as an unfilled can.
6. can: tankard.

  7   To be up after midnight and to go to bed then, is
  8   early: so that to go to bed after midnight is to go
  9   to bed betimes. Does not our life consist of the
 10   four elements?
9-10. Does not our life consist of the four elements: Earth, Water, Air, Fireearth, water, air, and fire.

 11   Faith, so they say; but I think it rather consists
 12   of eating and drinking.

 13   Thou'rt a scholar; let us therefore eat and drink.
13. Thou'rt a scholar: i.e., You're so smart!.

 14   Marian, I say! a stoup of wine!
14. stoup: large drinking cup.

           Enter CLOWN.

 15   Here comes the fool, i' faith.

 16   How now, my hearts! did you never see the picture
 17   of 'we three'?
17. the picture of "we three": a picture of two fools or two asses (It's "we three" because the viewer is the third. The Clown is saying they're fools, too.)

 18   Welcome, ass. Now let's have a catch.
18. catch: round. (A song in which two or more singers enter at different times, singing the same lyrics.)

 19   By my troth, the fool has an excellent breast. I
19. breast: breath, singing ability.

 20   had rather than forty shillings I had such a leg,
20. such a leg: (Perhaps the Clown is showing his leg in an elaborate bow.)

 21   and so sweet a breath to sing, as the fool has. In
 22   sooth, thou wast in very gracious fooling last
22. gracious: delightful, inspired.

 23   night, when thou spokest of Pigrogromitus, of the
 24   Vapians passing the equinoctial of Queubus: 'twas
23-24. Pigrogromitus . . . Queubus: (The Clown is talking some nonsense that sounds astrological.) 24. equinoctial: equator of the heavens. 26. leman: sweetheart.

 25   very good, i' faith. I sent thee sixpence for thy
 26   leman: hadst it?

 27   I did impeticos thy gratillity; for Malvolio's nose
27. impeticos thy gratillity: comic jargon.

 28   is no whipstock: my lady has a white hand, and the
28. whipstock: whip handle.

 29   Myrmidons are no bottle-ale houses.
29. Myrmidons: Achilles' troops. bottle-ale houses: low-class taverns, which sell bottled, rather than draft, ale Stippled engraving by P.W. Tomkins, 1792"this is the best fooling"

 30   Excellent! why, this is the best fooling, when all
 31   is done. Now, a song.

 32   Come on; there is sixpence for you: let's have a
 33   song.

 34   There's a testril of me too: if one knight give a —
34. testril: (A "tester" is a coin worth sixpence; Sir Andrew imitates the Clown's invention of the word "gratillity" by changing "tester" into "testril.")

 35   Would you have a love-song, or a song of good
 36   life?

 37   A love-song, a love-song.

 38   Ay, ay: I care not for good life.
38. good life: virtuous living.

                       Clown Sings.
 39        O mistress mine, where are you roaming?
 40        O, stay and hear; your true love's coming,
 41           That can sing both high and low:
 42        Trip no further, pretty sweeting;
42. Trip: run lightly. sweeting: sweet one.

 43        Journeys end in lovers meeting,
43. in lovers meeting: when lovers meet.

 44           Every wise man's son doth know.

 45   Excellent good, i' faith.

 46   Good, good.

                       Clown Sings.
 47        What is love? 'tis not hereafter;
 48        Present mirth hath present laughter;
 49           What's to come is still unsure:
49. still: always.

 50        In delay there lies no plenty;
 51        Then come kiss me, sweet and twenty,
51. sweet and twenty: sweet and twenty times more sweet.

 52           Youth's a stuff will not endure.

 53   A mellifluous voice, as I am true knight.

 54   A contagious breath.
54. contagious breath: catchy song; also stinking breath.

 55   Very sweet and contagious, i' faith.

 56   To hear by the nose, it is dulcet in contagion.
56. To . . . contagion: i.e., If the song could be heard via the nose, it would be sweetly stinking. 57. welkin: heavens.

 57   But shall we make the welkin dance indeed?
 58   shall we rouse the night-owl in a catch that
 59   will draw three souls out of one weaver?
59. draw three souls out of one weaver:English Hymn Singers.

 60   shall we do that?

 61   An you love me, let's do't: I am dog at a catch.
61. An: If. dog at: very good at.

 62   By'r lady, sir, and some dogs will catch well.
Clown with Sir Andrew and Sir Toby62. By'r lady: By Our Lady, i.e., well said, you're so right, etc. some dogs will catch well some dogs will, and some won't;.
63. knave: rascal, upstart, cheat.

 63   Most certain. Let our catch be, 'Thou knave.'

 64   'Hold thy peace, thou knave,' knight? I shall be
64. Hold thy peace: Be quiet, Shut up. Besides "Hold thy peace, thou knave," the only other words of the catch are, "and I prithee hold thy peace."

 65   constrained in't to call thee knave, knight.

 66   'Tis not the first time I have constrained one
 67   to call me knave. Begin, fool: it begins 'Hold
66-67. 'Tis . . . knave: (Sir Andrew means he has challenged men to duels by daring them to call him a knave, but what it sounds like is that he has done such stupid things that people have had to call him knave).

 68   thy peace.'

 69   I shall never begin if I hold my peace.

 70   Good, i' faith. Come, begin.

           Catch sung.
Catch sung: (Here we hear two drunks and a fool sing a round in which each one tells the next one that he is a knave and should shut up.)

           Enter MARIA.

 71   What a caterwauling do you keep here! If my
71. keep: keep up. Like "Ninety-nine bottles of beer on the wall," "Thou knave" can go on and on and on.

 72   lady have not called up her steward Malvolio
 73   and bid him turn you out of doors, never trust
 74   me.

 75   My lady's a Cataian, we are politicians,
75-76. My lady's a Cataian, we are politicians,/ Malvolio's a Peg-a-Ramsey: 76-77. 'Three merry men be we': A fragment of an old song.

 76   Malvolio's a Peg-a-Ramsey, and 'Three
 77   merry men be we.' Am not I consanguineous?
 78   am I not of her blood? Tillyvally. Lady!
78. Tillyvally: nonsense, fiddle-faddle.


 79   'There dwelt a man in Babylon, lady, lady!'
79. 'There dwelt a man in Babylon, lady, lady!': Another fragment from another old song.

 80   Beshrew me, the knight's in admirable fooling.
80. Beshrew me: A mild oath, like "Dang me."

 81   Ay, he does well enough if he be disposed, and
81. be disposed: is in the mood.

 82   so do I too: he does it with a better grace, but I
 83   do it more natural.
83. natural: naturally. But a "natural" is an idiot, so Sir Andrew has once again made fun of himself without realizing it.

      SIR TOBY BELCH [Sings]
 84   'O, the twelfth day of December,' —
84. 'O, the twelfth day of December': Another fragment from an old song.

 85   For the love o' God, peace!
85. peace!: quiet!.

           Enter MALVOLIO.

 86   My masters, are you mad? or what are you?
 87   Have ye no wit, manners, nor honesty, but
87. honesty: decency.

 88   to gabble like tinkers at this time of night?
88. tinkers: Tinkers were reputed to be foul-mouthed drunkards.

 89   Do ye make an alehouse of my lady's house,
 90   that ye squeak out your coziers' catches without
90. coziers': cobblers'.

 91   any mitigation or remorse of voice? Is there no
91. mitigation or remorse: lowering (of your voice) out of regard for others.

 92   respect of place, persons, nor time in you?

 93   We did keep time, sir, in our catches. Sneck up!
93. Sneck up!: Go hang!.

 94   Sir Toby, I must be round with you. My lady
94. round: blunt, up-front.

 95   bade me tell you, that, though she harbours
95. bade: ordered. harbours you: gives you a place to stay.

 96   you as her kinsman, she's nothing allied to
96. nothing allied to: no kin to.

 97   your disorders. If you can separate yourself
 98   and your misdemeanors, you are welcome
 99   to the house; if not, an it would please you
99. an: if.

100   to take leave of her, she is very willing to bid
101   you farewell.

      SIR TOBY BELCH [Sings.]
102   'Farewell, dear heart, since I must needs be gone.'
102. "Farewell . . . ": This and the following sung lines are from a sentimental ballad, Corydon's Farewell to Phillis.

103   Nay, good Sir Toby.

      Clown [Sings.]
104   'His eyes do show his days are almost done.'

105   Is't even so?

      SIR TOBY BELCH [Sings.]
106   'But I will never die.'

107   Sir Toby, there you lie.

108   This is much credit to you.
108. credit: honor. Malvolio is being heavily ironic.

      SIR TOBY BELCH [Sings.]
109   'Shall I bid him go?'

      Clown [Sings.]
110   'What an if you do?'
110. an if: if.

      SIR TOBY BELCH [Sings.]
111   'Shall I bid him go, and spare not?'

      Clown [Sings.]
112   'O no, no, no, no, you dare not.'

113   [To Clown.] Out o' tune, sir: ye lie.
113. ye lie: you're lying (because I certainly do dare to tell Malvolio where to go).

114   [To Malvolio.]Art any more than a steward?
115   Dost thou think, because thou art virtuous,
116   there shall be no more cakes and ale?
116. cakes and ale: i.e., party food and drink.

117   Yes, by Saint Anne, and ginger shall be
117. Saint Anne: mother of the the Virgin. (Puritans objected to her cult.) ginger: commonly used to spice ale.

118   hot i' the mouth too.

119   Thou'rt i' the right. Go, sir, rub your chain
119. rub: to polish it. chain: i.e., the decorative chain that Malvolio wears as a badge of his office as steward to Olivia.

120   with crumbs. A stoup of wine, Maria!

121   Mistress Mary, if you prized my lady's favour
122   at any thing more than contempt, you would
123   not give means for this uncivil rule: she shall
123. give means for this uncivil rule: i.e., provide the wine that lubricates this rowdy behavior. (Sir Toby has just called for wine, and Malvolio is outraged that Maria is serving it.)

124   know of it, by this hand.


125   Go shake your ears.
125. Go shake your ears: Since they are long ass's ears, they are shakeable.

126   'Twere as good a deed as to drink when a man's
127   a-hungry, to challenge him the field, and then to
127. to challenge him the field: to challenge him to a duel.

128   break promise with him and make a fool of him.
128. break promise with him: i.e., not show up at the duel.

129   Do't, knight: I'll write thee a challenge: or I'll
130   deliver thy indignation to him by word of mouth.

131   Sweet Sir Toby, be patient for tonight: since
132   the youth of the count's was today with thy lady,
133   she is much out of quiet. For Monsieur Malvolio,
133. much out of quiet: upset, distracted.

134   let me alone with him: if I do not gull him into a
134. let me alone with him: leave him to me. gull: trick.

135   nayword, and make him a common recreation,
135. nayword: byword (for an ass). common recreation: general laughingstock.

136   do not think I have wit enough to lie straight in
137   my bed: I know I can do it.

138   Possess us, possess us; tell us something of
138. Possess us: Inform us, tell us your plan.

139   him.

140   Marry, sir, sometimes he is a kind of puritan.

141   O, if I thought that I'ld beat him like a dog!

142   What, for being a puritan? thy exquisite reason,
142. puritan: puritan; also of the Puritan party in the Anglican church. (Maybe Sir Andrew has a prejudice against the religious Puritans, but he's probably just shooting his mouth off.) exquisite: amusingly clever.

143   dear knight?

144   I have no exquisite reason for't, but I have reason
145   good enough.

146   The devil a puritan that he is, or any thing
146. The dev'l a puritan that he is: i.e., Like hell he's a puritan. 147. time-pleaser: suck-up. affectioned: affected.

147   constantly, but a time-pleaser; an affectioned ass,
148   that cons state without book and utters it by great
148. cons state without book: memorizes the sayings of great men. 148-149.utters it by great swarths: spews it out in huge chunks. 149. the best persuaded of himself: having such a high opinion of himself. 151. grounds of faith: fundamental belief.

149   swarths: the best persuaded of himself, so
150   crammed, as he thinks, with excellencies, that it is
151   his grounds of faith that all that look on him love
152   him; and on that vice in him will my revenge find
153   notable cause to work.

154   What wilt thou do?

155   I will drop in his way some obscure epistles of
156   love; wherein, by the colour of his beard, the shape
155-156. obscure epistles of love: ambiguously worded love-letters.

157   of his leg, the manner of his gait, the expressure
158   of his eye, forehead, and complexion, he shall find
158. complexion: general appearance.

159   himself most feelingly personated. I can write very
159. most feelingly personated: exactly represented.

160   like my lady your niece: on a forgotten matter we
160. a forgotten matter: i.e., anything written so long ago that they can't remember who wrote it. 161. our hands: our handwriting.

161   can hardly make distinction of our hands.

162   Excellent! I smell a device.
162. device: trick, plot.

163   I have't in my nose too.

164   He shall think, by the letters that thou wilt drop,
165   that they come from my niece, and that she's in
166   love with him.

167   My purpose is, indeed, a horse of that colour.

168   And your horse now would make him an ass.

169   Ass, I doubt not.
169. Ass, I doubt not: Maria has no doubt that both Malvolio and Sir Andrew meet the definition of an ass.

170   O, 'twill be admirable!

171   Sport royal, I warrant you: I know my physic
171. physic: medicine, especially the kind that causes vomiting, etc.

172   will work with him. I will plant you two, and
173   let the fool make a third, where he shall find
173. let . . . third: (The Clown has left, so Fabian, not the Clown, joins Toby and Andrew in observing Malvolio.) 174. construction: interpretation. 175. event: the outcome (of the trick to be played on.

174   the letter: observe his construction of it. For
175   this night, to bed, and dream on the event.
176   Farewell.


177   Good night, Penthesilea.
177. Penthesilea: Queen of the Amazons. (Sir Toby is making an affectionate joke. Penthesila was large and fierce; Maria is small, but just as fierce.)

178   Before me, she's a good wench.
178. Before me: i.e., on my soul.

179   She's a beagle, true-bred, and one that adores
179. a beagle, true-bred: i.e., a good companion and hunter, just like a purebred beagle. 180. What o' that?: (Sir Toby seems puzzled by Maria's affection for him.)

180   me. What o' that?

181   I was adored once too.
181. I was adored once too: (Poor Sir Andrew!).

182   Let's to bed, knight. Thou hadst need send for
183   more money.

184   If I cannot recover your niece, I am a foul way
184. recover: win.

185   out.
184-185. a foul way out: stuck in the mud and off course. (Sir Andrew needs Olivia's money.)

186   Send for money, knight: if thou hast her not i'
187   the end, call me cut.
187. cut: A term of abuse, perhaps derived from the use of "cut" to refer to a poor quality horse, one that has had its tail docked or been gelded.

188   If I do not, never trust me, take it how you will.

189   Come, come, I'll go burn some sack; 'tis too late
189. burn: warm up. sack: a Spanish wine.

190   to go to bed now: come, knight; come, knight.