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To rase out rotten opinion. Unsound opinion. This seems to be a bad metaphor.
.......... Which hath writ me down
After my seeming. Which has written and fixed in the memory of the people. The memory is often compared to a book or tablet, in which things are written down.-The ancients had wooden tables, covered very thinly with wax, upon which they wrote with a pointed iron, called a style; whence comes the word style, or manner of writing. As we do not know how ideas are remembered, we are obliged to speak metaphorically when we describe the operations of memory; and it is a very natural metaphor to suppose the memory to be like a waxed tablet, upon which ideas might be engraved, and from which they might be easily effaced. We speak of warm images inelting into the soul-of ideas melting away from the memory :
“ Wirere beams of warm imagination play, The inemory's soft figures melt away.”
....... Bi Though my tide of blood' Hath proidly fow'd in vanity till now, . . Now doth it turn and ebb back to the sea,
Where it shall mingle with the foods of state, . And flow henceforth in formal majesty;" • " Though the tide of my blood hath flowed proudly hitherto, it now begins to ebh; and, instead of departing farther from the great sea of public duty, it will henceforth return, and mingle with the great ocean of state concerns; and when it again flows,' it shall flow majestically."..
This is a bold metaphor; that is to say, a metaphor which goes'farther beyond than the degree of resemblance that is usual in metaphors. The blood flows from the heart, and returns to it; the waves flow from the sea, and ebb' from the shore to the sea again : so far there is an analogy between the waves and the blood; but the poet goes beyond this analogy, and says, te tide of blood flowing proudly from the sea of majesty, had, during it's vigorous course, forgotten the dignity of it's origin; but now it ebbs, and, turning back to the sea, mixes again with the ocean of majesry, from which it shall hereafter flow with becoming dignity. .
Mingle with the floods of state-might perhaps have some remote allusion to the meeting of the parliament of the states, or estates, as they are sometimes called; in which meeting of all the streams of power the true majesty of the english government consists. - In the next sentence Henry speaks of calling the parliainent.
“ Now call we our high court of parliament,
[To Lord Chief Justice.), Our coronation done, we will accite (As I before remember'd) all our state; And (Heav'n consigning to my good intents) No prince, nor peer, shall have just cause to say, . Heav'n shorten Harry's happy life one day!"
« Now we will call our high court of parliament, and we will choose such counsellors as shall, like limbs, support the state, and carry it forward in equal progress with the best governed nation; so that war, or peace, or both at once, may become familiar to my people ; ainong which counsellors,
you, revered sir, (speaking to the chief justice) shall , be one of the foremost.– As soon as. our coronation is over, we will call this parliament, as I have already said, and (with the favour.. of Heaven), no prince, or peer, shall have just cause to pray to Heaven to shorten their king Henry's happy life...
Now call we. -Kings say we, instead of 1, because they represent their whole kingdoms.
High court.—Court properly means the building or place where any sofemn assembly is held, and is metaphorically used for the assembly itself.
As things acquainted and familiar to us.--The construction of this line is faulty : acquainted to is not usual; we say, acquainted with. · Have foremost hand.--To have a hand in any thing is a familiar expression; to have a foremost hand is a metaphor naturally arising. from this phrase. .
Accite.-Call together. ' ' . . ,
Through the whole of this latter part of Henry's speech, he unfolds what he intended: at the commencement of his reign. : In 'a: former part of the play, his father advises him to keep the minds of his people busy, lest they
should examine too nicely into his title to the crown. Henry, in pursuance of his counsel, had determined to make war in France ; and, to obtain the good-will of his people, he cast off Falstaff, and his former idle companions, and assures his brothers and the nobility, that he will assume the state and policy of a king; and he takes the best and earliest opportunity of giving a proof of his sincerity, hy honouring the chief justice, and promising to follow his counsel. This was. particularly •suited to his design of going abroad; for the chief justice of the king's bench was usually, in those times, regenç for governor). of the kingdom, during the king's absence.
Printed by H. Bryer, Bridewell Hospital, Bridge Streeti.