Note 1. This is not one of Shakespeares best sonnets; but, as he is found interesting under any circumstances that present him to the imagination, I thought the reader might like to see him in a ladys company while she was playing on the musical instrument that was the prototype of the wooden piano-forte. To find him thus situated seems like the next thing to having him with us to tea, or criticising the last new sonata. The term jack, since confined to that hidden portion of the key which strikes upon the wires or strings of this kind of instrument, appears in Shakespeares time to have been applied to the whole of it. Saucy jack, here pleasantly turned into a pun upon the keys, was a common term for a presumptuous fellow. Had an Italian poet translated this sonnet, the language of his musical country would have supplied him with a term for the keys much more appropriate than either,tasti or tasterelle,little tasters. Such is the sensitive Italian tongue. But how good is
The tender inward of thy hand!
and how well Shakespeare has described a slow movement in the line