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Shakespeare quotes page

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors ACT/SCENE: 4.2 SPEAKER: Dromio of Syracuse CONTEXT: DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Here, go—the desk, the purse! Sweet, now make haste.
LUCIANA
How hast thou lost thy breath?
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
By running fast.
ADRIANA
Where is thy master, Dromio? Is he well?
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
No, he’s in Tartar limbo, worse than hell.
A devil in an everlasting garment hath him,
One whose hard heart is buttoned up with steel;
A fiend, a fairy, pitiless and rough;
A wolf, nay, worse, a fellow all in buff;
A backfriend, a shoulder clapper, one that countermands
The passages of alleys, creeks, and narrow lands;
A hound that runs counter and yet draws dryfoot well,
One that before the judgment carries poor souls to hell. DUTCH: Hij is in ‘t voorportaal, neen, in de hel!
Hem heeft een duivel beet, in eeuw’gen dos,
Een man, wiens hart met staal benageld is,
Een wreede booze geest, een wolf, neen, meer,
Een kerel, gansch gehuld in buffelleêr
MORE: Tartar=Tartarus, hell in classical mythology
Fairy=Malign spirit
Buff=Hardwearing material; buff jerkins were worn by the sergeant
Backfriend=Backslapper who pretends to be a friend (shoulder-clapper was also slang for an arresting officer)
Countermand=Prohibit, with pun on ‘counter’ (name for debtor’s prison)
Passage=Access, entry, avenue, way leading to and out of something

Compleat:
Buff leather=Buffels of ossen leer op zeem bereid
Counter-mand=Tegenbeveelen; een bevel herroepen
Counter=Twee gevangenenhuizen in Londen die dus genoemd worden
Tartarean (of hell, from the Latin ‘tartarus’)=Helsch
To mend his draught=Zich eens verhaalen in ‘t drinken

Burgersdijk notes:
Hij is in’t voorportaal, neen, in de hel. In ‘t Engelsch staat: He is in Tartar’s limbo ; de uitdrukking schijnt aan de Engelschen uit Dante’s Goddelijke Comedie gemeenzaam te zijn geworden, men vindt haar meermalen bij Shakespeare en ook in Spencer’s Elfenkoningin. De hel was in Sh.’s tijd, en nog een eeuw later, de naam van een gevangenis. Evenzoo was counter (reg. 39) de naam van eene gevangenis; maar to run counter is ook een uitdrukking voor een jachthond, die op een valsch spoor is of in verkeerde richting loopt. — De gerechtsdienaars waren in leder gekleed, zie K. Hendrik IV. I. 2. Topics: law/legal, flattery, , punishment, authority

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 3.1
SPEAKER: Dromio of Ephesus
CONTEXT:
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
(within) Break any breaking here, and I’ll break your knave’s pate.
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
A man may break a word with you, sir, and words are but wind,
Ay, and break it in your face, so he break it not behind.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
(within) It seems thou want’st breaking. Out upon thee, hind!

DUTCH:
Nu wacht maar, wij zullen dat schelden en razen wel stuiten ,
En spoedig genoeg u een ander deuntjen doen fluiten.

MORE:
Proverbs: Words are but wind

Break a word with=Talk to
Thou want’st breaking=You need a thrashing

Topics: proverbs and idioms, language

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.1
SPEAKER: Adriana
CONTEXT:
Patience unmoved! No marvel though she pause;
They can be meek that have no other cause.
A wretched soul, bruised with adversity
We bid be quiet when we hear it cry,
But were we burdened with like weight of pain,
As much or more we should ourselves complain.
So thou, that hast no unkind mate to grieve thee,
With urging helpless patience would relieve me;
But, if thou live to see like right bereft,
This fool-begged patience in thee will be left.

DUTCH:
Een armen mensch, door ‘t nijdig lot geplaagd,
Vermanen wij tot kalm zijn, als hij klaagt;
Maar drukte eens ons hetzelfde leed als hem,
Niet min, licht meer, verhieven we onze stem

MORE:
Proverb: All commend patience but none can endure to suffer
Proverb: Let him be begged for a fool
Begging for a fool refers to the practice of petitioning for custody of the mentally ill or minors so as to gain control of their assets
Pause=Pause to consider marriage
Like=Similar
Like right bereft=To have rights similarly taken from you

Schmidt:
Helpless=Receiving no aid, wanting support
Bereave (bereft)=Taken from, spoiled, impaired

Compleat:
Bereft, bereaved=Beroofd
To beg one for a fool, to beg his estate of the King=Het bestier der goederen van een Krankzinnig mensch, van den Koning verzoeken

Topics: adversity, law/legal, patience, poverty and wealth

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 4.2
SPEAKER: Adriana
CONTEXT:
LUCIANA
Who would be jealous, then, of such a one?
No evil lost is wailed when it is gone.
ADRIANA
Ah, but I think him better than I say,
And yet would herein others’ eyes were worse.
Far from her nest the lapwing cries away.
My heart prays for him, though my tongue do curse.

DUTCH:
O, maar ik acht hem beter, dan ik zeg;
Als and’rer oog hem maar zoo haatlijk vond!
De kieviet schreeuwt, is hij van ‘t nest ver weg;
Mijn harte bidt voor hem, al vloekt mijn mond.

MORE:
Proverb: The lapwing cries most when farthest from her nest

Burgersdijk notes:
De kievit schreeuwt, enz. In Sh’s. tijd werd de kievit meermalen hiervoor aangehaald, ja de uitdrukking schijnt spreekwoordelijk geweest te zijn. In LILY’s Campaspe leest men:
„You resemble the lapwing, who crieth most where her nest is not.” Shakespeare zelf herhaalt het beeld in ,Maat voor Maat,” I.4.

Topics: deceit, perception, insult, proverbs and idioms, envy, manipulation

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
ADRIANA
Come, come, no longer will I be a fool,
To put the finger in the eye and weep
Whilst man and master laugh my woes to scorn.
Come, sir, to dinner.—Dromio, keep the gate. —
Husband, I’ll dine above with you today,
And shrive you of a thousand idle pranks.
Sirrah, if any ask you for your master,
Say he dines forth, and let no creature enter.—
Come, sister.—Dromio, play the porter well.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Am I in earth, in heaven, or in hell?
Sleeping or waking, mad or well-advised?
Known unto these, and to myself disguised!
I’ll say as they say, and persever so,
And in this mist at all adventures go.

DUTCH:
Wat is het, hemel, hel of aarde, hier?
Slaap, waak ik? Ben ik wijs of buiten west?
Ik ken mijzelven niet en zij mij best.

MORE:
Proverb: To put finger in the eye (force tears, generate sympathy)

Mist=Confusion
Well-advised=In my right mind
Persever=Persevere
To shrive=To hear confession and absolve (between condemnation and execution of punishment – origin of short shrift (korte metten))
At all adventures=Whatever the risk, consequences

Compleat:
To shrive=Biechten
At all adventures=Laat komen wat wil, ‘t gaa hoe ‘t gaa

Topics: imagination, evidence, judgment, reason, risk, proverbs and idioms

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.1
SPEAKER: Dromio of Ephesus
CONTEXT:
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Am I so round with you as you with me,
That like a football you do spurn me thus?
You spurn me hence, and he will spurn me hither.
If I last in this service, you must case me in leather.
LUCIANA
Fie, how impatience loureth in your face.

DUTCH:
Zeide ik goedrond de waarheid, ben ik dáárom
Te schoppen als een bal van hier naar ginds?
Gij schopt mij weg, hij schopt gewis mij weder,
Als ik dat uit zal houden, zoo naai mij eerst in leder.

MORE:
Round=Outspoken, plain-speaking
Spurn=Kick
Loureth=Scowl

Compleat:
To have a round delivery (clear utterance)=Glad ter taal zyn
A spurn=Een schop met de voet
To spurn=Agteruit schoppen, schoppen. To spurn away=Wegschoppen

Burgersdijk notes:
Te schoppen als een bal. Het voetbalspel is, zooals bekend is, nog zeer in zwang, en de bal er voor is met leder overtrokken.

Topics: work, civility, order/society, respect

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 5.1
SPEAKER: Abbess
CONTEXT:
Renownèd duke, vouchsafe to take the pains
To go with us into the abbey here
And hear at large discoursed all our fortunes,
And all that are assembled in this place
That by this sympathizèd one day’s error
Have suffered wrong. Go, keep us company,
And we shall make full satisfaction.—
Thirty-three years have I but gone in travail
Of you, my sons, and till this present hour
My heavy burden ne’er deliverèd.—
The Duke, my husband, and my children both,
And you, the calendars of their nativity,
Go to a gossips’ feast, and go with me.
After so long grief, such nativity!

DUTCH:
En meegeleden hebt door al de dwaling
Van éénen dag, treedt binnen; allen zullen
Ten volle, zoo ik hoop, bevredigd zijn.

MORE:
Schmidt:
Vouchsafe=Deign to (go)
Sympathized=Share in (by all)
Discourse=Relate, tell
Nativity=Birth

Compleat:
Vouchsafe=Vergun
Discourse=Redeneeren

Topics: error, resolution

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 5.1
SPEAKER: Aegeon
CONTEXT:
O, grief hath changed me since you saw me last,
And careful hours with time’s deformèd hand
Have written strange defeatures in my face.
But tell me yet, dost thou not know my voice?

DUTCH:
Door zorgvolle uren heeft de maag’re hand
Des Tijds mij vreemde trekken ingegrift

MORE:
Schmidt:
Defeatures=Disfigurements
Careful=Full of cares, subject to anxiety, sorrow, or want

Topics: time, age/experience, sorrow, appearance, grief

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
Because that I familiarly sometimes
Do use you for my fool and chat with you,
Your sauciness will jest upon my love
And make a common of my serious hours.
When the sun shines, let foolish gnats make sport,
But creep in crannies when he hides his beams.
If you will jest with me, know my aspect,
And fashion your demeanour to my looks,
Or I will beat this method in your sconce.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
“Sconce” call you it? So you would leave battering,
I had rather have it a “head.” An you use these blows long, I must get a sconce for my head and ensconce it too, or else I shall seek my wit in my shoulders. But I pray, sir, why am I beaten?

DUTCH:
Omdat ik soms gemeenzaam scherts en keuvel,
Als met een nar, misbruikt ge in overmoed
Mijn vriendlijkheid en neemt mijn ernstige uren,
Alsof ze u toebehoorden, in beslag.
Maar dans’ de mug ook in den zonneschijn,
Zij kruipt in reten, als de lucht betrekt

MORE:
Proverb: He has more wit in his head than you in both your shoulders

Jest upon= Trifle with
Sauciness=Impertinence, impudence
Make a common of my serious hours=Treat my hours of business as common property (reference to property law, where racts of ground were allocated to common use and known as “commons”)
Aspect=Look, glance; possible reference to astrology, with the aspect being the position of one planet in relation to others and its potential to exert influence
Sconce=(1) Head; (2) Fortification, bulwark
Fashion your demeanour to my looks=Check my mood and act accordingly

Compleat:
To jest=Boerten, schertsen, jokken, gekscheeren
Sconce=(Sconse) Een bolwerk of blokhuis
To sconce (university word to signify the setting up so much in the buttery-book, upon one’s head, to be paid as a punishment for a duty neglected or an offence committed)=In de boete beslaan, eene boete opleggen, straffen
Sconsing=Beboeting, beboetende
To fashion=Een gestalte geeven, vormen, fatzoeneeren

Burgersdijk notes:
Op mijn bol? In ‘t Engelsch een woordspeling met sconce, dat „bol” of „hoofd” beteekent, en ook, schans”, waarom ook het woord ensconce, ,,verschansen” volgt. Bij het maken der aanteekeningen komt het mij voor, dat het woord bolwerk had kunnen dienen om het origineel nauwkeuriger terug te geven: „Mijn bol noemt gij dit, heer? als gij het slaan wildet laten, zou ik het liever voor een hoofd houden, maar als gij met dat ranselen voortgaat, moet ik een bolwerk voor mijn hoofd zien te krijgen en het goed dekken (of versterken), of mijn verstand in mijn rug gaan zoeken.”

Topics: respect, misunderstanding, punishment, emotion and mood

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 3.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
Teach me, dear creature, how to think and speak.
Lay open to my earthy gross conceit,
Smothered in errors, feeble, shallow, weak,
The folded meaning of your words’ deceit.
Against my soul’s pure truth why labour you
To make it wander in an unknown field?
Are you a god? would you create me new?
Transform me, then, and to your power I’ll yield.

DUTCH:
Zijt ge een godin, die mij vervormen wil?
Vervorm mij dan! ik geef mij in uw hand.

MORE:
Schmidt:
Conceit= Conceptions, ideas
Folded=Concealed

Compleat:
To conceit=Zich verbeelden, achten
Conceit=Waan, bevatting, opvatting, meening

Topics: understanding, error, intellect, learning/education, respect

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
Plead you to me, fair dame? I know you not.
In Ephesus I am but two hours old,
As strange unto your town as to your talk,
Who, every word by all my wit being scanned,
Want wit in all one word to understand.

DUTCH:
Geldt mij dit, schoone vrouw? Ik ken u niet.
Twee uren pas ben ik in Ephesus ,
En vreemder dan de stad is mij uw taal;
Want, hoe ik napluis, wat ik heb gehoord,
‘k Versta van alles, wat gij zegt, geen woord.

MORE:
But two hours old=I have only been here for two hours
Scanned=Considered (with every ounce of my intellect)

Compleat:
To scan=Onderzoeken, uitpluizen
To be a stranger to=Geen kennis van hebben

Topics: language, civility, understanding

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Adriana
CONTEXT:
How ill agrees it with your gravity
To counterfeit thus grossly with your slave,
Abetting him to thwart me in my mood.
Be it my wrong you are from me exempt,
But wrong not that wrong with a more contempt.
Come, I will fasten on this sleeve of thine.
Thou art an elm, my husband, I a vine
Whose weakness, married to thy stronger state,
Makes me with thy strength to communicate.
170If aught possess thee from me, it is dross,
Usurping ivy, brier, or idle moss,
Who, all for want of pruning, with intrusion
Infect thy sap and live on thy confusion.

DUTCH:
Hoe kwalijk strookt het met uw waardigheid ,
Dit guichelspel te spelen met uw slaaf,
Hem aan te zetten i dat hij dus mij terg’!
Lijd ik liet onrecht, dat gij mij verlaat,
Hoop niet op onrecht onrecht door uw smaad.

MORE:
Proverb: The vine embraces the elm

Be it= Accepting that it is
To counterfeit=To feign
Thus grossly= So evidently
Exempt=Separated; not subject to my control; relieved from duty (also denoting a person or institution not subject to the jurisdiction of a particular bishop) (OED)

Compleat:
Ill at ease=Onpasselyk, kwaalyk te pas
Gross=Grof, plomp, onbebouwen
You grossly mistake my meaning=Gy vergist u grootelyks omtrent myn meening
To counterfeit (feign)=(Zich) Veinzen
A counterfeit friendship=Een gemaakte of geveinsde vriendschap

Topics: proverbs and idioms, invented or popularised, conspiracy, deceit

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 3.2
SPEAKER: Luciana
CONTEXT:
Muffle your false love with some show of blindness.
Let not my sister read it in your eye;
Be not thy tongue thy own shame’s orator;
Look sweet, be fair, become disloyalty;
Apparel vice like virtue’s harbinger.
Bear a fair presence, though your heart be tainted.
Teach sin the carriage of a holy saint.

DUTCH:
Blik zacht, spreek vleiend, huichel, ban haar vrees;
Hul in het vlekk’loos kleed der deugd uw zonde

MORE:
Proverb: Fair face foul heart
Proverb: It is an ill thing to be wicked (wretched) but a worse to be known so (to boast of it)

Become disloyalty=Wear disloyalty in a becoming fashion

Harbinger=Forerunner
Apparel=Dress up, cloak (vice as the forerunner of virtue)

Compleat:
Harbinger=Een bestelmeester, voorloper
To apparel=Optooijen, kleeden,
Apparelled=Gekleed, gedoft, opgetooid

Topics: deceit, appearance, honesty

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Dromio of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
By what rule, sir?
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Marry, sir, by a rule as plain as the plain bald pate of Father
Time himself.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Let’s hear it.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
There’s no time for a man to recover his hair that grows bald by nature.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
May he not do it by fine and recovery?
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Yes, to pay a fine for a periwig, and recover the lost hair of another man.

DUTCH:
Wel, heer, op een grond zoo glad als de gladde kale
kop van Vader Tijd zelf.

MORE:
Proverb: Take time (occasion) by the forelock, for she is bald behind

Father Time, the personification of Time as a more ‘friendly’ version than personification with a scythe or the Grim Reaper.
Plain (1) open, clear, simplet; (2) even, level, smooth
Fine and recovery. In old English law, “fine” meant “an amicable composition or agreement of astute, either actual or fictitious, by leave of the King or his justices”. Fines and Recoveries were used to circumvent the Statute of Entail, which tended to restrict the free transfer of land, by “suffering a feigned recovery” or “levying a fine”. There was a particular appeal for theatre audiences in the farcicality of the process (alluded to by Shakespeare in three plays: The Merry Wives of Windsor, The Comedy
of Errors and Hamlet).

Compleat:
Plain (even, smooth, flat)=Vlak, effen
A plain superficies=Een gelyke oppervlakte
Plain (clear)=Klaar, duidelyk

Topics: time, invented or popularised, still in use, law/legal

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 1.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
I pray you, jest, sir, as you sit at dinner.
I from my mistress come to you in post;
If I return, I shall be post indeed,
For she will scour your fault upon my pate.
Methinks your maw, like mine, should be your clock,
And strike you home without a messenger.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Come, Dromio, come, these jests are out of season.
Reserve them till a merrier hour than this.
Where is the gold I gave in charge to thee?
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
To me, sir? Why, you gave no gold to me!
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Come on, sir knave, have done your foolishness,
And tell me how thou hast disposed thy charge.

DUTCH:
Kom, Dromio, kom, ontijdig is die scherts;
Bewaar ze tot ik vroolijker gestemd ben.
Waar is het goud, dat ik u toevertrouwde?

MORE:
Out of season=Badly timed, inconvenient
Jest=Each believes the other to be joking (in ‘sportive humour’). The confusion about the delivery of a gold chain is a reference to a cause célèbre case in 1591 and 1592, Underwood v Manwood. This would have been appreciated by an audience in Gray’s Inn in 1594.
Maw=appetite

Compleat:
Maw=Maag
Out of season=Uit de tyd
To jest=Boerten, schertsen, jokken, gekscheeren

Topics: time, debt/obligation, misunderstanding, dispute

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 4.1
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Ephesus
CONTEXT:
ANGELO
Nay, come, I pray you, sir, give me the chain.
Both wind and tide stays for this gentleman,
And I, to blame, have held him here too long.
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
Good Lord! You use this dalliance to excuse
Your breach of promise to the Porpentine.
I should have chid you for not bringing it,
But, like a shrew, you first begin to brawl.
SECOND MERCHANT
The hour steals on. I pray you, sir, dispatch.
ANGELO
You hear how he importunes me. The chain!
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
Why, give it to my wife, and fetch your money.
ANGELO
Come, come. You know I gave it you even now.
Either send the chain, or send me by some token.
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
Fie, now you run this humor out of breath.
Come, where’s the chain? I pray you, let me see it.
SECOND MERCHANT
My business cannot brook this dalliance.
Good sir, say whe’er you’ll answer me or no.
If not, I’ll leave him to the Officer.

DUTCH:
Mijn hemel! wis moet deze scherts bewimp’len,
Dat gij mij in den Egel zitten liet.
Het was aan mij u daarom hard te vallen,
Maar als een feeks zoekt gij het eerste twist.

MORE:
Proverb: Time and tide (The tide) tarries (stays for) no man
Proverb: Some complain to prevent complaint (I should have chid you for not bringing it, But like a shrew you first begin to brawl)

Chid (impf., to chide.)=To rebuke, to scold at
Run this humour out of breath=Taking the joke too far
Token=A sign or attestion of a right

Compleat:
Importune=Lastig vallen, zeer dringen, gestadig aanhouden, overdringen, aandringen
To sail with wind and tide=Voor wind and stroom zeilen
Chide=Kyven, bekyven
Token=Teken, getuigenis
Dalliance=Gestoei, dartelheid

Topics: proverbs and idioms, time, fate/destiny, complaint, promise, business

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Adriana
CONTEXT:
Wouldst thou not spit at me, and spurn at me,
And hurl the name of husband in my face,
And tear the stained skin off my harlot brow,
And from my false hand cut the wedding ring,
And break it with a deep-divorcing vow?
I know thou canst, and therefore see thou do it.
I am possessed with an adulterate blot;
My blood is mingled with the crime of lust;
For if we two be one, and thou play false,
I do digest the poison of thy flesh,
Being strumpeted by thy contagion.
Keep then fair league and truce with thy true bed,
I live unstained, thou undishonourèd.

DUTCH:
Want zijn wij tweeën één en zijt gij valsch,
Dan stroomt het gif van uw bloed in het mijn’,
En door uw smetstof word ik tot boelin.

MORE:
Possession had a stronger meaning, akin to ‘infect’
Harlot brow=Branding on the forehead with a hot iron was punishment for prostitution
Strumpeted=Turned into a strumpet, prostitute (by contamination)
Unstained=Undefiled (some editors use disstain here)

Compleat:
To enter into a league=In een verbond treeden, een verbond aangaan
Truce=Een bestand, stilstand van wapenen, treves

Topics: loyalty, ruin, reputation, marriage, love, respect

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 1.1
SPEAKER: Duke
CONTEXT:
Nay, forward, old man. Do not break off so,
For we may pity though not pardon thee.
EGEON
O, had the gods done so, I had not now
Worthily termed them merciless to us.
For, ere the ships could meet by twice five leagues,
We were encounterd by a mighty rock,
Which being violently borne upon,
Our helpful ship was splitted in the midst;
So that, in this unjust divorce of us,
Fortune had left to both of us alike
What to delight in, what to sorrow for.

DUTCH:
Neen, oude, breek niet af; want mededoogen
Mag ik u schenken, schoon genade niet..

MORE:
Worthily=Deservedly, justly
Helpful ship=Mast, which was helpful when the ship was “sinking-ripe”
In the midst=Down the middle

Compleat:
Worthily=Waardiglyk
Helpful=Behulpelyk
Midst=Het middenst, midden

Topics: pity, mercy, judgment, fate/destiny, life

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 4.4
SPEAKER: Officer
CONTEXT:
OFFICER
Masters, let him go.
He is my prisoner, and you shall not have him.
PINCH
Go, bind this man, for he is frantic too.
ADRIANA
What wilt thou do, thou peevish officer?
Hast thou delight to see a wretched man
Do outrage and displeasure to himself?
OFFICER
He is my prisoner. If I let him go,
The debt he owes will be required of me.

DUTCH:
t Is mijn gevang’ne; ontsnapt hij mij, dan wordt,
Wat hij betalen moet, op mij verhaald

MORE:
Cited in Shakespeare’s Legal Maxims (William Lowes Rushton)
“If a sheriff or gaoler suffers a prisoner to escape upon mesne process (that is, during the pendency of a suit), he is liable to action on the case.” (Cro. Eliz. 625, Bennion v Watson)
Peevish=Silly, spiteful
Displeasure=Offence, harm

Schmidt:
Outrage=Rude violence, contempt shown to law and decency

Compleat:
Peevish=Kribbig, gemelyk
Outrage=Smaad, spyt, overlast, leed
Displeasure=Misnoegen, ongenade
To do a displeasure to one=Iemand verdriet aandoen

Topics: law/legal, debt/obligation, punishment, remedy, consequence

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 1.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus
CONTEXT:
He that commends me to mine own content
Commends me to the thing I cannot get.
I to the world am like a drop of water
That in the ocean seeks another drop,
Who, falling there to find his fellow forth,
Unseen, inquisitive, confounds himself,
So I, to find a mother and a brother,
In quest of them, unhappy, lose myself.

DUTCH:
Die mij genoegen met mijzelven wenscht,
Die wenscht mij toe, wat zeker niet gebeurt.

MORE:
Content=Contentment
Find forth=Seek out
To the world=Compared with, in relation to, the world
Onions:
Confounds himself=Mingles indistinguishably with the rest, loses himself
Unhappy=Unfortunate

Compleat:
Content=Voldoening, genoegen

Topics: satisfaction, emotion and mood, wellbeing

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 4.2
SPEAKER: Dromio of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
No, he’s in Tartar limbo, worse than hell.
A devil in an everlasting garment hath him,
One whose hard heart is buttoned up with steel;
A fiend, a fury, pitiless and rough;
A wolf, nay, worse, a fellow all in buff;
A backfriend, a shoulder clapper, one that countermands
The passages of alleys, creeks, and narrow lands;
A hound that runs counter and yet draws dryfoot well,
One that before the judgment carries poor souls to hell.

DUTCH:
Hij is in ‘t voorportaal, neen, in de hel!
Hem heeft een duivel beet, in eeuw’gen dos,
Een man, wiens hart met staal benageld is,
Een wreede booze geest.

MORE:
Tartar=Tartarus, hell in classical mythology
Fairy=Malign spirit
Buff=Hardwearing material; buff jerkins were worn by the sergeant
Backfriend=Backslapper who pretends to be a friend (shoulder-clapper was also slang for an arresting officer)
Countermand=Prohibit, with pun on ‘counter’ (name for debtor’s prison)
Passage=Access, entry, avenue, way leading to and out of something

Compleat:
Buff leather=Buffels of ossen leer op zeem bereid
Counter-mand=Tegenbeveelen; een bevel herroepen
Counter=Twee gevangenenhuizen in Londen die dus genoemd worden
Tartarean (of hell, from the Latin ‘tartarus’)=Helsch
To mend his draught=Zich eens verhaalen in ‘t drinken

Burgersdijk notes:
Hij is in’t voorportaal, neen, in de hel. In ‘t Engelsch staat: He is in Tartar’s limbo ; de uitdrukking schijnt aan de Engelschen uit Dante’s Goddelijke Comedie gemeenzaam te zijn geworden, men vindt haar meermalen bij Shakespeare en ook in Spencer’s Elfenkoningin. De hel was in Sh.’s tijd, en nog een eeuw later, de naam van een gevangenis. Evenzoo was counter (reg. 39) de naam van eene gevangenis; maar to run counter is ook een uitdrukking voor een jachthond, die op een valsch spoor is of in verkeerde richting loopt. — De gerechtsdienaars waren in leder gekleed, zie K. Hendrik IV. I. 2.

Topics: punishment

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 4.1
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Ephesus
CONTEXT:
ANGELO
Here is thy fee. Arrest him, officer.
I would not spare my brother in this case
If he should scorn me so apparently.
OFFICER
I do arrest you, sir. You hear the suit.
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
I do obey thee till I give thee bail.
But, sirrah, you shall buy this sport as dear
As all the metal in your shop will answer.
ANGELO
Sir, sir, I will have law in Ephesus,
To your notorious shame, I doubt it not.

DUTCH:
Ik onderwerp mij, tot ik borgtocht stel. —
Maar, heerschap, gij bekoopt die scherts zoo duur,
Dat heel uw winkel zoo veel goud niet levert.

MORE:
Apparently=Openly, evidently
Sport=Jest, mockery
Buy=Pay (dearly) for

Topics: law/legal, offence, security, debt/obligation, claim

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 3.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
What I should think of this I cannot tell,
But this I think: there’s no man is so vain
That would refuse so fair an offered chain.
I see a man here needs not live by shifts
When in the streets he meets such golden gifts.
I’ll to the mart, and there for Dromio stay.
If any ship put out, then straight away.

DUTCH:
Een vreemd geval! wat is dit nu alweer?
Dit weet ik slechts: geen mensch zoo dwaas, die niet
Een gift aanvaardt, die men zoo hoff’lijk biedt.
En ik erken, hier is nog wel te leven,
Als vreemden zoo maar gouden ketens geven.

MORE:
Mart=Market, marketplace
Shifts=Tricks
Vain=Foolish

Compleat:
Vain (useless, frivolous, idle, chimerical)=Nutteloos, ydel, ingebeeld
Shift (subterfuge, evasion)=Uitvlucht
I made shift to go thither=Ik ging ‘er met veel moeite naar toe
He made a hard shift to live=Hy kon kwaalyk aan de kost komen
Mart=Jaarmarkt
Letters of mart=Brieven van wederneeminge of van verhaal; Brieven van Represailes

Topics: honesty, poverty and wealth, work

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 4.4
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Ephesus
CONTEXT:
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
Fear me not, man. I will not break away:
I’ll give thee, ere I leave thee, so much money,
To warrant thee, as I am ’rested for.
My wife is in a wayward mood today
And will not lightly trust the messenger
That I should be attached in Ephesus.
I tell you, ’twill sound harshly in her ears.
Here comes my man. I think he brings the money.
How now, sir? Have you that I sent you for?
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Here’s that, I warrant you, will pay them all.
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
But where’s the money?
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Why, sir, I gave the money for the rope.
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
Five hundred ducats, villain, for a rope?
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
I’ll serve you, sir, five hundred at the rate.

DUTCH:
Wees niet beducht, man, ik ontloop u niet;
Maar geef u, eer ik van u ga, de som,
Waarvoor gij mij in hecht’nis hebt genomen.

MORE:
Pay=To satisfy, to quit by giving an equivalent
Lightly=Easily, readily
Warrant=To secure (against danger or loss)

Compleat:
Warrant (assure, promise)=Verzekeren, belooven, ervoor instaan

Topics: security, debt/obligation

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.1
SPEAKER: Adriana
CONTEXT:
His company must do his minions grace,
Whilst I at home starve for a merry look.
Hath homely age th’ alluring beauty took
From my poor cheek? Then he hath wasted it.
Are my discourses dull? Barren my wit?
If voluble and sharp discourse be marred,
Unkindness blunts it more than marble hard.
Do their gay vestments his affections bait?
That’s not my fault; he’s master of my state.
What ruins are in me that can be found
By him not ruined? Then is he the ground
Of my defeatures. My decayèd fair
A sunny look of his would soon repair.
But, too unruly deer, he breaks the pale
And feeds from home. Poor I am but his stale.

DUTCH:
Ontnam reeds rimp’lige ouderdom mijn wang
Haar boeiend schoon? Wie heeft het mij geroofd,
Dan hij? Is geest en scherts in mij verdoofd?
Neemt iets aan vlug en lucht gekout den moed,
‘t Is barschheid, ruw en hard als steen, die ‘t doet.
Lokt and’rer fraai gewaad hem van mijn zij,
‘t Is mijn schuld niet, want hij koopt mij kleedij.
Wat is in mij vervallen en is ‘t niet
Door hem? Ja, zoo hij mij vervallen ziet,
Hij ziet zijn eigen werk; één zonnestraal
Van hem, mijn schoon herleeft in morgenpraal.

MORE:
Proverb: As hard as a stone (flint, rock)

Voluble=Fluent, articulate
Sharp=Subtle, witty
Voluble and sharp discourse=Articulate and witty conversation
To blunt=Dull the edge of, repress, impair, i.e. blunt the natural edge
Ground of=Reason for
Defeatures=Disfigurements
Stale= Laughing-stock, dupe; decoy or bait set up as a lure
Pale=Enclosure

Compleat:
A voluble tongue=Een vloeijende tong, een gladde tong, een tong die wel gehangen is
Court minion=Een gunsteling van den Vorst; Troetelkind
To pale in=Met paalen afperken, afpaalen. Paled in=Rondom met paalen bezet, afgepaald
To make on a stale (property or stalking-horse) to one’s design=Iemand gebruiken om ons oogmerk te bereiken

Topics: language, intellect, respect, marriage, relationship, loyalty

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 3.2
SPEAKER: Luciana
CONTEXT:
What simple thief brags of his own attaint?
‘Tis double wrong to truant with your bed
And let her read it in thy looks at board.
Shame hath a bastard fame, well managèd;
Ill deeds is doubled with an evil word.

DUTCH:
Door fraaie taal redt schande vaak den schijn,
Maar booze taal is dubbel-booze daad.

MORE:
Proverb: Fine words dress ill deeds

Attaint=Offence, disgrace, corruption
Well-managed=Put a good spin on
Bastard fame=Illegitimate honour
Compact of credit=Made of credulity, entirely believable

Compleat:
To attaint=Overtuigen van misdaad, schuldidg verklaaren, betichten; bevlekken, bederf aanzetten
Attainted=Overtuigd van misdaad, misdaadig verklaard
To compact=In een trekken, dicht t’saamenvoegen

Topics: offence, truth, corruption, deceit, vanity, intellect

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
If it be, sir, I pray you, eat none of it.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Your reason?
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Lest it make you choleric and purchase me another dry basting.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Well, sir, learn to jest in good time. There’s a time for all things.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
I durst have denied that before you were so choleric.

DUTCH:
Het mocht u de gal doen overloopen en mij een tweede klopping bezorgen,

MORE:
Proverb: There is a time for all things (Everything has its time)
Choleric=According to the four humours the four complexions were: sanguine, melancholic, choleric and phlegmatic. Choler was credited with being hot and dry and the choleric man was hot-tempered or irritable
Basting=(1) Keep meat covered with fat or juices to avoid drying out; (2)=Beating with a stick. Dry basting=Severe drubbing

Compleat:
Cholerick=Oploopend, haastig, toornig. To be in choler=Toornig zyn
To jest=Boerten, schertsen, jokken, gekscheeren
Basting=Met een stok slaan, afroffing
Basting of meat=Het bedruipen van ‘t vleesch
CITED IN US LAW:
Griffith v. City of Trenton, 76 N.J.L. 23, 69 A. 29 (1908)

Topics: cited in law, caution, time, proverbs and idioms, misunderstanding, emotion and mood

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 4.3
SPEAKER: Dromio of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
It is the devil.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Nay, she is worse; she is the devil’s dam, and here she comes in the habit of a light wench. And thereof comes that the wenches say “God damn me” that’s as much to say “God make me a light wench.” It is written they appear to men like angels of light. Light is an effect of fire, and fire will burn: ergo, light wenches will burn. Come not near her.
COURTESAN
Your man and you are marvellous merry, sir.
Will you go with me? We’ll mend our dinner here.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Master, if you do, expect spoon meat; or bespeak a long spoon.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Why, Dromio?
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Marry, he must have a long spoon that must eat with the devil.

DUTCH:
Daar staat geschreven, dat zij aan mannen zich voordoen als licht; Iicht is een uitwerksel van vuur, en vuur verzengt en steekt aan; dus, lichte deernen steken aan. Kom haar niet te na.

MORE:
Proverb: The devil and his dam
Proverb: The devil can transform himself into an angel of light
Proverb: He who sups with the devil should have a long spoon

Devil’s dam=The devil’s mother
Mend=To set right, to correct, to repair what is amiss
Spoon-meat=Meat for toddlers or invalids
Bespeak=Order, reserve, engage

Compleat:
Spoon-meat=Lepel-kost
Bespeak=Bespreeken

Topics: proverbs and idioms, still in use, caution, good and mad, risk

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 1.1
SPEAKER: Duke
CONTEXT:
EGEON
Proceed, Solinus, to procure my fall,
And by the doom of death end woes and all.
DUKE
Merchant of Syracuse, plead no more.
I am not partial to infringe our laws.
The enmity and discord which of late
Sprung from the rancorous outrage of your duke
To merchants, our well-dealing countrymen,
Who, wanting guilders to redeem their lives,
Have sealed his rigorous statutes with their bloods,
Excludes all pity from our threat’ning looks.
For since the mortal and intestine jars
’Twixt thy seditious countrymen and us,
It hath in solemn synods been decreed,
Both by the Syracusians and ourselves,
To admit no traffic to our adverse towns.

DUTCH:
Koopman van Syracuse, spaar uw reed’nen;
Ik volg, steeds onpartijdig, streng de wet.
De bitt’re vijandschap, die onlangs rees,
Doordien uws hertogs wreede toren woedde
Op hand’laars, wakk’re burgers onzer stad, —
Die, ‘t geld ontberend om zich los te koopen,
Zijn wet bezeeg’len moesten met hun bloed, —
Bant alle ontferming van ons gram gelaat.
Want sedert tusschen uw onrustig volk
En ons een diep rampzaal’ge twist ontstond,
Verboden hier en ginder raadsbesluiten,
Zoowel van die van Syracuse als ons,
Den handel tusschen beide ontvlamde steden

MORE:
Doom=Judgment, sentence. This exact phrase also appears in Henry V, 3.6. and in Titus Andronicus, 3.1
Intestine=Domestic, internal, between people of the same nation.
Jars=Quarrels
Partial=Inclined (meaning now obsolete (OED))
Sealed … with their bloods=Cost their lives
Adverse=hostile

Compleat:
Doom=Vonnis, oordeel, verwyzing
A heavy doom=een zwaar vonnis
Dooms-man=een Rechter, Scheidsman
Dooms-day=De dag des oordeels
Dooms-day in the Afternoon=St Jutmis, nooit
To doom=Veroordelen, verwyzen, doemen
Jar=Getwist, geharrewar, gekrakkeel, gekyf
Intestine=Inwendig, inheemsch
An intestine war=Een inlandsche oorlog

Burgersdijk notes:
Verboden hier en ginder raadsbesluiten. In een stuk, uitgevaardigd in het begin van Elizabeth’s regeering, wordt erkend, dat beperkende bepalingen tot bescherming van eigen handel groot ongenoegen wekken tusschen vorsten, en aan de kooplieden veel leed en schade toebrengen. Toch riep Elizabeth zelve, weinige jaren later, zulke bepalingen in het leven. Het is, of de dichter hier wil uitdrukken, welke noodlottige gevolgen zij des noods zouden kunnen hebben.

Topics: law/legal, business, money

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.1
SPEAKER: Adriana
CONTEXT:
Unfeeling fools can with such wrongs dispense.
I know his eye doth homage otherwhere,
Or else what lets it but he would be here?
Sister, you know he promised me a chain.
Would that alone o’ love he would detain,
So he would keep fair quarter with his bed.
I see the jewel best enamelèd
Will lose his beauty. Yet the gold bides still
That others touch, and often touching will
Wear gold; yet no man that hath a name
By falsehood and corruption doth it shame.
Since that my beauty cannot please his eye,
I’ll weep what’s left away, and weeping die.
LUCIANA
How many fond fools serve mad jealousy!

DUTCH:
Ik zie het nu, de fijnst geslepen steen
Verliest zijn glans, en blijve goud ook goud,
Hoe vaak betast, zijn vol gewicht behoudt.
Het niet aldoor; en op den schoonsten naam
Werpt valschheid en verleiding vaak een blaam.

MORE:
The confusion about the delivery of a gold chain is a reference to a cause célèbre case in 1591 and 1592, Underwood v Manwood. This would have been appreciated by the audience in Gray’s Inn in 1594.Proverb: Iron (Gold) with often handling is worn to nothing

To let=To prevent (what lets it but=what else would prevent)
Keep fair quarter= Keep good order or keeping proper place, quarter being a military term for lodging

Compleat:
To let=Beletten, verhinderen
No quarter given=Daar was geen lyfsgenade; daar wierdt geen kwartier gegeven

Topics: reputation, honesty, corruption, integrity, law/legal

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 3.1
SPEAKER: Dromio of Ephesus
CONTEXT:
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
O villain, thou hast stolen both mine office and my name!
The one ne’er got me credit, the other mickle blame.
If thou hadst been Dromio today in my place,
Thou wouldst have changed thy face for a name,
Or thy name for an ass.

DUTCH:
Staalt gij mijn dienst en naam, gij zult het, o schurk! u beklagen;
De een bracht mij nooit crediet en de ander dikwijls slagen.
Hadt gij den heelen dag maar voor Dromio gespeeld,
Dan waren u mijne namen en klappen toebedeeld.

MORE:
Schmidt:
Office=Job, position
Name=Reputation
Mickle=much, great

Compleat:
Mickle=Veel, een woord dat in ‘t Noorden van Engeland zeer gemeen is
Many a little makes a mickle=Veele kleintjes maaken een groot

Topics: reputation, authority, service

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 5.1
SPEAKER: Angelo
CONTEXT:
ANGELO
I am sorry, sir, that I have hindered you,
But I protest he had the chain of me,
Though most dishonestly he doth deny it.
SECOND MERCHANT
How is the man esteemed here in the city?
ANGELO
Of very reverend reputation, sir,
Of credit infinite, highly beloved,
Second to none that lives here in the city.
His word might bear my wealth at any time.

DUTCH:
Hij heeft een besten naam, heer; zijn crediet
Is onbeperkt, hij algemeen bemind;
Hij is van de allereersten van de stad,
Ja, meer dan mijn vermogen geldt zijn woord

MORE:
Second to none wasn’t invented by Shakespeare, although he was an early user.
Reverend (or reverent)=Entitled to high respect, venerable
Bear his wealth=(1) His word is as good as his bond; (2) I would trust him with all my wealth without security

Compleat:
Reverend=Eerwaardig, geducht

Topics: adversity, law/legal, patience, poverty and wealth

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 3.1
SPEAKER: Dromio of Ephesus
CONTEXT:
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Say what you will, sir, but I know what I know.
That you beat me at the mart I have your hand to show;
If the skin were parchment and the blows you gave were ink,
Your own handwriting would tell you what I think.
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
I think thou art an ass.
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Marry, so it doth appear
By the wrongs I suffer and the blows I bear.
I should kick being kicked; and, being at that pass,
You would keep from my heels and beware of an ass.

DUTCH:
Zeg wat gij wilt, heer, maar ik weet, wat ik weet,
Dat uw groete bestond in het slaan, dat gij deedt;
Waar’ mijn vel perkament en waren uwe slagen inkt,
‘k Had een schrift’lijk bewijs, dat gij zoo mij ontvingt

MORE:
Proverb: I know (wot) what I know (wot) / I wot what I wot, though I few words make
Mart=Marketplace

Compleat:
Mart=Jaarmarkt
Letters of mart=Brieven van wederneeminge of van verhaal; Brieven van Represailes

Topics: claim, evidence, proverbs and idioms

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 3.1
SPEAKER: Balthazar
CONTEXT:
And doubt not, sir, but she will well excuse
Why at this time the doors are made against you.
Be ruled by me; depart in patience,
And let us to the Tiger all to dinner,
And about evening come yourself alone
To know the reason of this strange restraint.
If by strong hand you offer to break in
Now in the stirring passage of the day,
A vulgar comment will be made of it;
And that supposèd by the common rout
Against your yet ungallèd estimation
That may with foul intrusion enter in
And dwell upon your grave when you are dead;
For slander lives upon succession,
Forever housèd where it gets possession.

DUTCH:
Want laster, eens gezaaid, is schielijk groot,
En blijft aan ‘t groeien, waar zij wortel schoot.

MORE:
Proverb: Envy never dies

Doors made against you=Doors closed to you
Possession had a strong meaning, akin to ‘infect’
Ungallèd=unsullied, untarnished
Estimation=Reputation
Vulgar=Public
Foul=Forced

Compleat:
Vulgar= (common) Gemeen
To gall (vex)=Tergen, verbitteren

Topics: proverbs and idioms, envy, patience, caution, reputation

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 3.1
SPEAKER: Balthazar
CONTEXT:
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
O Signior Balthasar, either at flesh or fish
A table full of welcome make scarce one dainty dish.
BALTHASAR
Good meat, sir, is common; that every churl affords.
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
And welcome more common, for that’s nothing but words.
BALTHASAR
Small cheer and great welcome makes a merry feast.

DUTCH:
Zij de spijs ook gering, bij een vriendlijken waard ga ik gaarne te gast.

MORE:
Proverb: Good will and welcome is your best cheer

Schmidt:
Cheer=Food, entertainment
Churl=Peasant, rude and ill-bred fellow
Scarce=Barely

Compleat:
Welcome=Onthaal; welkomst
A hearty welcome=Een hartelyke maaltyd
Churl=Een plompe hoer, als mede een vrek
Churlish=Woest, boersch, onbeschoft
To make good cheer (chear)=Goede cier maaken
Sumptuous chear=Prachtige opdissching
Cold chear=Koel onthaal

Topics: friendship, civility, proverbs and idioms

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 4.2
SPEAKER: Dromio of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
ADRIANA
The hours come back. That did I never hear.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
O yes, if any hour meet a sergeant, he turns back for very fear.
ADRIANA
As if time were in debt. How fondly dost thou reason!
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Time is a very bankrout and owes more than he’s worth to season.
Nay, he’s a thief too. Have you not heard men say
That time comes stealing on by night and day?
If he be in debt and theft, and a sergeant in the way,
Hath he not reason to turn back an hour in a day?

DUTCH:
Als of de tijd in schulden stak! hoe dol! wie hoorde ‘t ooit?

MORE:
Hours come back=Go backwards
Bankrout=Bankrupt
Fondly=Foolishly

Compleat:
Fond=Zot, dwaas, ongerymt

Topics: time, reason, debt/obligation

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Dromio of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
The plainer dealer, the sooner lost. Yet he loseth it in a kind of jollity.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
For what reason?
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
For two, and sound ones too.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Nay, not sound, I pray you.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Sure ones, then.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Nay, not sure, in a thing falsing.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Certain ones, then.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Name them.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
The one, to save the money that he spends in tiring; the other, that at dinner they should not drop in his porridge.

DUTCH:
Hoe onnoozeler iemand is, des te eer zorgt hij het
kwijt te raken; maar hij verliest het met een soort van
genot.

MORE:
Proverb: The properer (honester) man the worse luck

Ref also to plain dealing and double dealing
Falsing=Deceptive
Tiring=Hairdressing
Sound=Both ‘valid’ and ‘healthy’

Compleat:
Plain dealing=Oprechte handeling
To tire=Optoooijen, de kap zetten
Sound (healthful)=Gezond
Sound (whole)=Gaaf
Sound (judicious)=Verstandig, schrander, gegrond

Topics: honesty, gullibility, satisfaction, fate/destiny, proverbs and idioms

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Because it is a blessing that he bestows on beasts, and what he hath scanted men in hair, he hath given them in wit.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Why, but there’s many a man hath more hair than wit.

DUTCH:
Zoo, maar er zijn menschen genoeg, die meer haar hebben dan verstand.

MORE:
Proverb: Bush natural, more hair; than wit
Proverb: An old goat is never themore revered for his beard
Proverb: Wisdom consists not in a beard

Scanted=Been miserly with

Compleat:
Scant=Bekrompen, schaars
I was scanted in time=Ik had er naauwlyks tyd toe

Topics: intellect, appearance, insult, proverbs and idioms

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 1.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
Upon my life, by some device or other
The villain is o’erraught of all my money.
They say this town is full of cozenage,
As nimble jugglers that deceive the eye,
Dark-working sorcerers that change the mind,
Soul-killing witches that deform the body,
Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks,
And many suchlike liberties of sin.
If it prove so, I will be gone the sooner.

DUTCH:
Zoo waar ik leef, door de een of and’re streek
Is al mijn geld den kerel afgezet.
De stad is, zegt men, vol bedrog en list,
Vol beurzensnijders, die het oog bedotten,
Nachttoov’naars, die verbijst’ren, heksen, die
De ziel verdervend , ‘t lichaam tevens sloopen,
Marktschreeuwers, tal van sluw vermomde schurken,
Onnoemlijk boos, steeds zondigend geboeft;
Zoo ‘t waarheid blijkt, reis ik onmidd’lijk af.

MORE:
Device=Scheme, plot

Compleat:
Device (cunning trick)=Een listige streek
Device (invention or contrivance)=Uitvinding, vinding
Mountebank=Kwakzalver
Cozenage or Cozening=Bedrieging
To prate=Praaten. Prate and prattle=Keffen en snappen. Prate foolishly=Mal praaten
Cheater=Swindler

Burgersdijk notes:
De stad is, zegt men, vol bedrog en list. De stad Ephesus stond reeds bij de ouden bekend, als een plaats waar veel tooverkunst uitgeoefend wordt. Men vindt dit ook in de Handelingen der Apostelen vermeld, XIX, vs. 13 en 19. Dat Sh. juist daarom zijn stuk te Ephesus liet spelen, is duidelijk genoeg; men vergelijke II 2; als de gedachte aan tooverij den zoekenden Antipholus en zijn dienaar verbijstert, is het verklaarbaar, dat zij, bij al de vergissingen, niet op de gedachte komen, van nader te onderzoeken, of niet misschien juist in Ephesus hunne evenbeelden woonden.

Topics: suspicion, money, deceit

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 4.1
SPEAKER: Angelo
CONTEXT:
ANGELO
You wrong me more, sir, in denying it.
Consider how it stands upon my credit.
SECOND MERCHANT
Well, officer, arrest him at my suit.
OFFICER
I do, (to ANGELO) and charge you in the Duke’s name to obey me.
ANGELO
This touches me in reputation.
Either consent to pay this sum for me,
Or I attach you by this officer.
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
Consent to pay thee that I never had?—
Arrest me, foolish fellow, if thou dar’st.

DUTCH:
Dit komt mijn goeden naam te na. —
Kies dus: betaal die som voor mij aan hem,
Of volg voor mij dien dienaar naar de gijz’ling.

MORE:
Stands upon my credit=Affects my reputation
Suit=Petition or entreaty

Topics: reputation, claim, debt, law/legal

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 3.2
SPEAKER: Luciana
CONTEXT:
What simple thief brags of his own attaint?
‘Tis double wrong to truant with your bed
And let her read it in thy looks at board.
Shame hath a bastard fame, well managèd;
Ill deeds is doubled with an evil word.
Alas, poor women, make us but believe,
Being compact of credit, that you love us.
Though others have the arm, show us the sleeve;
We in your motion turn, and you may move us.
Then, gentle brother, get you in again.
Comfort my sister, cheer her, call her wife.
‘Tis holy sport to be a little vain
When the sweet breath of flattery conquers strife.

DUTCH:
Een weinig huich’lens is een vroom bedrog,
Als zoete vleitaal twist bedwingen kan.

MORE:
Attaint=Stain, crime
Vain=Deceitful
Compact of credit=Made of credulity, entirely believable

Topics: flattery, offence, appearance, gullibility

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 5.1
SPEAKER: Abbess
CONTEXT:
It seems his sleeps were hinder’d by thy railing,
And therefore comes it that his head is light.
Thou sayst his meat was sauced with thy upbraidings.
Unquiet meals make ill digestions.
Thereof the raging fire of fever bred,
And what’s a fever but a fit of madness?

DUTCH:
Zijn maal werd, zegt gij, met uw twist gekruid;
Onrustig eten stoort de spijsvertering.

MORE:
Upbraidings=Reproaches
To rail=To reproach, scold
Sauced with=Accompanied by

Compleat:
Upbraiding=Verwyting
To rail=Schelden

Topics: emotion and mood, wellbeing, madness

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
To me she speaks; she moves me for her theme.
What, was I married to her in my dream?
Or sleep I now and think I hear all this?
What error drives our eyes and ears amiss?
Until I know this sure uncertainty
I’ll entertain the offered fallacy.
LUCIANA
Dromio, go bid the servants spread for dinner.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
O, for my beads! I cross me for a sinner.
This is the fairy land. O spite of spites!
We talk with goblins, ouphs, and sprites:
If we obey them not, this will ensue:
They’ll suck our breath, or pinch us black and blue.

DUTCH:
Het is tot mij, dat zij die reed’nen houdt!
Wat! ben ik in den droom met haar getrouwd?
Of slaap ik nu en meen ik, dat ik hoor?
Wat vreemde waan verdwaast mijn oog en oor?
Maar kom, tot mij dit raadsel wordt verklaard,
Zij de opgedrongen dwaling thans aanvaard

MORE:
Proverb: To beat (pinch) one black and blue. Pinching was a traditional punishment associated with fairies

Onions:
Move=to urge, incite, instigate, make a proposal to, appeal or apply to (a person)
Error=Mistake, deception, false opinion
Ouph=Elf, goblin
Uncertainty=A mystery, the unknown
Entertain=Accept (the delusion)

Compleat:
Error=Fout, misslag, dwaaling, dooling
To lie under a great errour=In een groote dwaaling steeken
Beadsman=een Bidder, Gety=leezer, Gebed-opzegger

Topics: imagination, evidence, judgment, punishment, proverbs and idioms

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 5.1
SPEAKER: Dromio
CONTEXT:
We came into the world like brother and brother,
And now let’s go hand in hand, not one before another

DUTCH:
Neen, dan zij ‘t zoo:
Wij sprongen samen de wereld in, als broeders, met elkander;
Zoo gaan wij nu samen hand aan hand, en de een niet na den ander

MORE:

Topics: relationship, love, respect, resolution, equality

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 5.1
SPEAKER: Antipholus
CONTEXT:

And so do I, yet did she call me so,
And this fair gentlewoman, her sister here,
Did call me brother. What I told you then
I hope I shall have leisure to make good,
If this be not a dream I see and hear.

DUTCH:
Wat ik u toen zeide,
Dit worde, wensch ik vurig, dra vervuld,
Zoo niet al wat ik zie en hoor, een droom is.

MORE:

Topics: promise

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
ADRIANA
By thee; and this thou didst return from him:
That he did buffet thee and, in his blows,
Denied my house for his, me for his wife.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Did you converse, sir, with this gentlewoman?
What is the course and drift of your compact?
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
I, sir? I never saw her till this time.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Villain, thou liest; for even her very words
Didst thou deliver to me on the mart.

DUTCH:
Dus hebt ge met deze edelvrouw gesproken?
Van waar die afspraak? en wat wilt ge er mee?

MORE:
Course=Gist
Drift=Scope, aim, intention or drive
Compact=Covenant, contract or collusion, alliance

Compleat:
Course (way or means)=Wegen of middelen
To take bad courses=Kwaade gangen gaan
Drift=Oogmerk, opzet, vaart
Compact=Verdrag, verding, verbond
It was done by compact=Het geschiede met voorbedachten raad (or door een hemelyk verdrag)

Topics: purpose, contract, plans/intentions, conspiracy

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 4.2
SPEAKER: Adriana
CONTEXT:
ADRIANA
Ah, Luciana, did he tempt thee so?
Mightst thou perceive austerely in his eye
That he did plead in earnest, yea or no?
Looked he or red or pale, or sad or merrily?
What observation mad’st thou in this case
Of his heart’s meteors tilting in his face?
LUCIANA
First he denied you had in him no right.
ADRIANA
He meant he did me none; the more my spite.
LUCIANA
Then swore he that he was a stranger here.
ADRIANA
And true he swore, though yet forsworn he were.

DUTCH:
En zaagt ge, als tusschen wolken flikkerlicht,
Ook strijd des harten op zijn aangezicht?

MORE:
Tilt=Toss, play unsteadily
Meteor=A bright phenomenon, thought to be portentous, appearing in the atmosphere (perhaps electrically charged clouds or colours of the aurora borealis)
Austerely=Severely

Topics: love, appearance, honesty

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Dromio of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Shall I tell you why?
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Ay, sir, and wherefore, for they say every why hath a wherefore.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
“Why” first: for flouting me; and then “wherefore”: for urging it the second time to me.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Was there ever any man thus beaten out of season,
When in the “why” and the “wherefore” is neither rhyme nor reason?
Well, sir, I thank you.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Thank me, sir, for what?
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Marry, sir, for this something that you gave me for nothing.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
I’ll make you amends next, to give you nothing for something. But say, sir, is it dinnertime?

DUTCH:
In geen van deze twee daaroms is rijm noch slot noch zin.
Toch, heer, dank ik u.

MORE:
Proverb: Neither rhyme nor reason
Proverb: Every why has a wherefore/There is never a why but there is a wherefore
Proverb: My stomach has struck dinnertime/twelve (rung noon)

Out of season= Unfairly, unseasonably
Dinnertime: shortly before noon

Compleat:
Why and wherefore both translated as waarom
Out of season=Uit de tyd
To make amends=Vergoeding doen, vergoeden
To flout=Bespotten, beschimpen

Topics: invented or popularised, still in use, reason, proverbs and idioms, remedy

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 5.1
SPEAKER: Duke
CONTEXT:
ANTIPHOLUS OF EPHESUS
I never came within these abbey walls,
Nor ever didst thou draw thy sword on me.
I never saw the chain, so help me heaven,
And this is false you burden me withal.
DUKE
Why, what an intricate impeach is this!
I think you all have drunk of Circe’s cup.
If here you housed him, here he would have been.

DUTCH:
Dit is een zaak vol wondervreemde raadsels!
Het schijnt, gij allen dronkt uit Circe’s nap.
Waar’ hij hier ingevlucht, hij zou er zijn;
En waar’ hij dol, hij pleitte niet zoo kalm

MORE:
Circe=A sorceress in Greek mythology; in Homer’s Odyssey, Circe transforms Odysseus’s men into pigs by giving them a magic potion.
Impeach=Accusation, reproach

Compleat:
To impeach=Betichten, beschuldigen, aanklagen
To impeach (or oppose) the truth of a thing=Zich tegen de waarheid van een zaak aankanten

Topics: law/legal, appearance, evidence, madness

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
Yea, dost thou jeer and flout me in the teeth?
Think’st thou I jest? Hold, take thou that and that (beats Dromio of S.)
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Hold, sir, for God’s sake! Now your jest is earnest.
Upon what bargain do you give it me?

DUTCH:
Antipholus van Syracuse.
Zoo, waagt gij ‘t weer, den draak met mij te steken?
Acht gij dat scherts? Hier, neem dan dit, en dat!
Dromio van Syracuse.
Om gods wil, heer! houd op, uw jok wordt ernst,
Wat jokte ik dan, dat gij mij zoo betaalt?

MORE:
Proverb: Leave jesting while it pleases lest it turn to earnest
Proverb: To cast (hit) in the teeth

Schmidt:
Bargain=Mercantile transaction

Compleat:
Bargain=Een verding, verdrag, koop
To flout=Bespotten, beschimpen
To flout and jeer at one=Iemand uitjouwen
To lay in the teeth=Verwyten, braaveren
To trow something in one’s teeth=Iemand iets in de neus wryven, voor de scheenen werpen, verwyten
To jest=Boerten, schertsen, jokken, gekscheeren
To speak a thing betwixt jest and earnest=Iets zeggen half jok half ernst

Topics: misunderstanding, money, debt/obligation, dispute

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 5.1
SPEAKER: Aegeon
CONTEXT:
Not know my voice! O time’s extremity,
Hast thou so crack’d and splitted my poor tongue
In seven short years that here my only son
Knows not my feeble key of untuned cares?
Though now this grainèd face of mine be hid
In sap-consuming winter’s drizzled snow,
And all the conduits of my blood froze up,
Yet hath my night of life some memory,
My wasting lamps some fading glimmer left,
My dull deaf ears a little use to hear.
All these old witnesses—I cannot err—
Tell me thou art my son Antipholus.

DUTCH:
Toch heeft
De nacht mijns levens nog herinnering,
Mijn kwijnend lampenpaar een schemerschijn,
Mijn oor, schoon doof, nog iets gehoors

MORE:
Feeble key=Weak and discordant tone of voice
Grainèd face=Furrowed, lined features

Topics: age/experience, memoryevidence

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
ACT/SCENE: 2.2
SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse
CONTEXT:
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
The one, to save the money that he spends in tiring; the other, that at dinner they should not drop in his porridge.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
You would all this time have proved there is no time for all things.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Marry, and did, sir: namely, e’en no time to recover hair lost by nature.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
But your reason was not substantial why there is no time to recover.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE
Thus I mend it: Time himself is bald and therefore, to the world’s end, will have bald followers.
ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE
I knew ’twould be a bald conclusion:
But soft, who wafts us yonder?

DUTCH:
Gij hadt mij nu al dezen tijd moeten bewijzen, dat er niet voor alles een tijd is.

MORE:
Proverb: There is a time for everything (or for all things). (1399) Allusion to Ecclesiastes 3:1.

Topics: proverbs and idioms, still in use

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