19th December – Shakespeare’s ‘Winter’s Tale’

‘WINTER’S TALE Mark your divorce, young sir, Whom son I dare not call’

Plate is taken from ‘Winter’s Tale’ in ‘The Plays of William Shakespeare.’ From the corrected text of Johnson and Steevens, embellished with plates, in six volumes. Vol. 2 (1807).
Engraved by J. Heath, historical engraver to his Majesty; and to H.RH. the Prince of Wales.
Painted by W. Hamilton R.A.
Published June 1. 1804 by J. Heath.

The below extract is taken from ACT III SCENE II 

‘Enter Autolycus, singing.

When daffodils begin to peer,……
     With, heigh! the doxy over the dale….
Why, then comes in the sweet o’ the year;
     For the red blood reigns in the winter’s pale.

The white sheet bleaching on the hedge,…
     With, hey! the sweet birds, O, how they sing!
Doth set my pugging tooth on edge;
     For a quart of ale is a dish for a king.

The lark, that tirra-lirra chants….
     With, hey! with hey! the thrush and the jay:…
Are summer songs for me and my aunts,
     While we lie tumbling in the hay.

I have serv’d prince Florizel, and, in my time, wore three-pile; but now I am out of service:

But shall I go mourn for that, my dear?
     The pale moon shines by night:
And when I wander here and there,
     I then do most go right.

If tinkers may have leave to live,
     And bear the sow-skin budget;
Then my account I well may give,
     And in the stocks avouch it.’

This is part of Volume 2 of ‘The Works of Shakespeare: in six volumes’ (822.33 SHA) which is part the 18th Century Collection. To find this volume and others visit here.

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