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The court awards it, and the law doth give it.

Shy. Most rightful judge!

Por. And you must cut this flesh from off his breast; The law allows it, and the court awards it. Shy. Most learned judge!-A sentence; come, pre

pare. Por. Tarry a little there is something else. This bond doth give thee here no jot of blood; The words expressly are, a pound of flesh: Take then thy bond, take thou thy pound of flesh; But, in the cutting it, if thou dost shed One drop of christian blood, thy lands and goods Are, by the laws of Venice, confiscate Unto the state of Venice. Gra. O upright judge!-Mark, Jew;-0 learned

judge! Shy. Is that the law? Por.

Thyself shalt see the act: For, as thou urgest justice, be assur'd, Thou shalt have justice, more than thou desir’st. Gra. O learned judge!-Mark, Jew;ma learned

judge!
Shy. I take this offer then;2-pay the bond thrice,
And let the Christian go.
Bass.

Here is the money.
Por. Soft;
The Jew shall have all justice ;-soft!-no haste;-
He shall have nothing but the penalty.

Gra. O Jew! an upright judge, a learned judge!
Por. Therefore, prepare thee to cut off the flesh.3

2 I take this offer then;] Perhaps we should read-his; i. e. Bassanio's, who offers twice the sum, &c. Steevens.

This offer is right. Shylock specifies the offer he means, which is, “to have the bond paid thrice.” M. Mason.

He means, I think, to say, “I take this offer that has been made me.” Bassanio had offered at first but twice the sum, but Portia had gone further—“Shylock, there's thrice thy money,” &c. The Jew naturally insists on the larger sum. Malone.

3 Therefore, prepare thee to cut off the flesh.] This judgment is related by Gracian, the celebrated Spanish jesuit, in his Hero, with a reflection at the conclusion of it: “ — Compite con la del Salomon la promptitud de aquel gran Turco. Pretendia un Judio cortar una onza de carne a un Christiano, pena sobre usura. Insistia en ello con igual terqueria a su Principe, que perfidia a su

Shed thou no blood; nor cut thou less, nor more,
But just a pound of flesh:-if thou tak’st more,
Or less, than a just pound—be it but so much
As makes it light, or heavy, in the substance,
Or the division of the twentieth part
Of one poor scruple; nay, if the scale do turn
But in the estimation of a hair,
Thou diest, and all thy goods are confiscate.

Gra. A second Daniel, a Daniel, Jew!
Now, infidel, I have thee on the hip.

Por. Why doth the Jew pause? take thy forfeiture.
Shy. Give me my principal, and let me go.
Bass. I have it ready for thee; here it is.

Por. He hath refus'd it in the open court;
He shall have merely justice, and his bond.

Gra. A Daniel, still say I; a second Daniel! I thank thee, Jew, for teaching me that word.

Shy. Shall I not have barely my principal?

Por. Thou shalt have nothing but the forfeiture,
To be so taken at thy peril, Jew.

Shy. Why then the devil give him good of it!
I'll stay no longer question.
Por.

Tarry, Jew;
The law hath yet another hold on you.
It is enacted in the laws of Venice,
If it be prov'd against an alien,
That by direct, or indirect attempts,
He seek the life of any citizen,

Dios. Mando el gran Juez traer peso, y cuchillo; conminole el deguello si cortava mas ni menos. Y fue dar agudo corte a la lid, y al mundo milagro del ingenio.El Heroe de Lorenzo Gracian. Primor. 3. Thus rendered by Sir John Skeffington, 1652:

“ The vivacity of that great Turke enters in competition with that of Solomon: a Few pretended to cut an ounce of the flesh of a Christian upon a penalty of usury; he urged it to the Prince, with as much obstinacy, as perfidiousness towards God. The great Judge comanded a pair of scales to be brought, threatening the Few with death if he cut either more or less : And this was to give a sharp decision to a malicious process, and to the world a miracle of subtilty.” The Heroe, p. 24, &c.

Gregori Leti, in his Life of Sixtus V, has a similar story. The papacy of Sixtus began in 1583. He died Aug. 29, 1590. The reader will find an extract from Farneworth’s translation, at the conclusion of the play. Steevens.

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The party, 'gainst the which he doth contrive,
Shall seize one half his goods; the other half
Comes to the privy coffer of the state;
And the offender's life lies in the mercy
Of the duke only, 'gainst all other voice.
In which predicament, I say, thou stand'st:
For it appears by manifest proceeding,
That, indirectly, and directly too,
Thou hast contriv'd against the very life
Of the defendant; and thou hast incurr'd
The danger formerly by me rehears’d.
Down, therefore, and beg mercy of the duke.

Gra. Beg, that thou may'st have leave to hang thyself:
And yet, thy wealth being forfeit to the state,
Thou hast not left the value of a cord;
Therefore, thou must be hang'd at the state's charge.

Duke. That 'thou shalt see the difference of our spirit, I pardon thee thy life before thou ask it: For half thy wealth, it is Antonio's; The other half comes to the general state, Which humbleness may drive unto a fine.

Por. Ay, for the state;o not for Antonio.

Shy. Nay, take my life and all, pardon not that: You take my house, when you do take the prop That doth sustain my house; you take my life, When you do take the means whereby I live.

Por. What mercy can you render him, Antonio? Gra. A halter gratis; nothing else, for God's sake.

Ant. So please my lord the duke, and all the court, To quit the fine for one half of his goods; I am content,5 so he will let me have

4 Ay, for the state; &c.] That is, the state's moicty may be commuted for a fine, but not Antonio's. Malone.

5 I am content,] The terms proposed have been misunderstood. Antonio declares, that as the duke quits one half of the forfeiture, he is likewise content to abate his claim, and desires not the property but the use or produce only of the half, and that only for the Jew's life, unless we read, as perhaps is right, upon my death."

Johnson. Antonio tells the duke, that if he will abate the fine for the state's half, he (Antonio) will be contented to take the other, in trust, after Shylock's death, to render it to his daughter's husband. That is, it was during Shylock’s life, to remain at in.

The other half in use,--to render it,
Upon his death, unto the gentleman
That lately stole his daughter:
Two things provided more,—That, for this favour,
He presently become a Christian;
The other, that he do record a gift,
Here in the court, of all he dies possess'd,
Unto his son Lorenzo, and his daughter.

Duke. He shall do this; or else I do recant
The pardon, that I late pronounced here.

Por. Art thou contented, Jew? what dost thou say?
Shy. I am content.

Clerk, draw a deed of gift.
Shy. I pray you, give me leave to go from hence;
I am not well; send the deed after me,
And I will sign it.
Duke.

Get thee gone, but do it. Gra. In christening thou shalt have two godfathers; Had I been judge, thou should'st have had ten more, To bring thee to the gallows, not the font. [Exit Shy.

Duke. Sir, I entreat you home with me to dinner. Por. I humbly do desire your grace of pardon ;?

Por.

6

terest in Antonio's hands, and Shylock was to enjoy the produce of it. Ritson.

Antonio's offer is, “that he will quit the fine for one half of his fortune, provided that he will let him have it at interest dur. ing the Jew's life, to render it on his death Lorenzo.” That is the meaning of the words to let me have in use. M. Mason.

thou should'st have had ten more,] i. e. a jury of twelve men, to condemn thee to be hanged. Theobald. So, in The Devil is an Ass, by Ben Jonson:

I will leave you
To your godfathers in law. Let twelve men work.”

Steevens. This appears to have been an old joke. So, in A Dialogue both pleasaunt and pietifull, &c. by Dr. William Bulleyne, 1564, (which has been quoted in a former page) one of the speakers, to show his mean opinion of an hostler at an inn, says: “ I did see him aske blessinge to xii godfathers at ones. Malone.

7-grace of pardon:] Thus the old copies; the modern editors read, less harshly, but without authority,—your grace's pardon. The same kind of expression occurs in Othello:

:-" I humbly do beseech

you

of your pardon. In the notes to As you Like it, and A Midsummer Night's Dream, I have given repeated instances of this phraseology. Steevens.

I must away this night toward Padua,
And it is meet, I presently set forth.

Duke. I am sorry, that your leisure serves you not.
Antonio, gratify this gentleman;
For, in my mind, you are much bound to him.

[Exeunt Duke, Magnificoes, and Train. Bass. Most worthy gentleman, I and my friend, Have by your wisdom been this day acquitted Of grievous penalties; in lieu whereof, Three thousand ducats due unto the Jew, We freely cope your courteous pains withal.

Ant. And stand indebted, over and above,
In love and service to you evermore.

Por. He is well paid, that is well satisfied;
And I, delivering you, am satisfied;
And therein do account myself well paid;
My mind was never yet more mercenary.
I pray you, know me, when we meet again;
I wish you well, and so I take my leave.

Bass. Dear sir, of force I must attempt you further;
Take some remembrance of us, as a tribute,
Not as a fee: grant me two things, I pray you,
Not to deny me, and to pardon me.

Por. You press me far, and therefore I will yield. Give me your gloves, I'll wear them for your sake: And, for your love, I 'll take this ring from you:Do not draw back your hand; I 'll take no more; And you in love shall not deny me this.

Bass. This ring, good sir,-alas, it is a trifle; I will not shame myself to give you this.

Por. I will have nothing else but only this; And now, methinks, I have a mind to it.

Bass. There's more depends on this, than on the value.
The dearest ring in Venice will I give you,
And find it out by proclamation;
Only for this, I pray you, pardon me.

Por. I see, sir, you are liberal in offers:
You taught me first to beg; and now, methinks,
You teach me how a beggar should be answer’d.

Bass. Good sir, this ring was given me by my wife ;
And, when she put it on, she made me vow,
That I shou' i neither sell, nor givė, nor lose it.

Por. That 'scuse serves many men to save their gifts.

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