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Fef. I'm never merry, when I hear sweet music.

Lor. The reason is, your spirits are attentive;
For do but note a wild and wanton berd,
Or race of youthful and unhandled colts,
Fetching mad bounds, bellowing, and neighing loud,
{Which is the hot condition of their blood :)
If they perchance but hear a trumpet found,
Or
any

air of music touch their ears,
You shall perceive them make a mutual ftand;
Their savage eyes turn’d to a modest gaze,
By the sweet power of music. Therefore, the poet
Did feign that Orpheus drew trees, stones, and foods;
Since nought so stockish, hard, and full of rage,
But music, for the time, doth change his nature,
The man that hath no music in himself,
Nor is not mov'd with concord of sweet sounds,
Is fit for treasons, stratagems and spoils :
The motions of his spirits are dull as night,
And his affections dark as Erebus.
Let no such man be trafted. Mark the music.

Enter PORTIA and NERISSA.
Por. That light we fee is burning in my hall:
How far that little candle throws his beams!
So shines a good deed in a naughty world.

Ner. When the moon shone, we did not see the candle.
Por. So doth the greater glory dim the less.

Lor. That is the voice,
Or I am much deceiy'd, of Portia.

Por. He knows me, as the blind man knows the
By the bad voice.

[cuckow, Lor, Dear lady, welcome home.

Por. We have been praying for our husbands healths,
Which speed, we hope, the better for our words.
Are they returned?

Lor. Madam, they are not, yet ;
I-ut there is come a messenger before,
To fignify their coming.

Por. Go, Neriffa,
Give order to my servants, that they take
No note at all of our being absent hence;
Nor you, Lorenzo ; Jeffica,

nor you. (A Trumpet founds.
Lór. Your husband is at hand, I hear his trumpet;
We are no tell-tales, madam, fear you pot,

Ente

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Enter BASSANIO, ANTHONIO, GRATIANO, and their

followers. Por. You are welcome home, my lord. Bas. I thank you, madam, give welcome to my This is the man, this is Anthonio,

[friend. To whom I am so infinitely bound.

Por. You should, in all sense, be much bound to him; For, as I hear, he was much bound for you.

Anth. No more than I am well acquitted of.

Por. Sir, you are very welcome to our house ; ; It must appear in other ways than words; Therefore, I scant this breathing courtesy. Gra. By yonder moon, I swear, you do me wrong:

[To Nerilla. In faith, I gave it to the judge's clerki Would he were hang'd that had it, for my part,'. Since you

do take it, love, so much at heart.
Por. A quarrel, ho, already! What's the matter ?

Gra. About a hoop of gold, a paltry rings
That she did give me, whose poesy was **
For all the world like cutler's poetry,
Upon a knife; Love me, and leave me not.

Ner. What talk you of the poefy, or the value ?
You swore to me, when I did give it you,
That you would wear it till your hour of death,
And that it should lie with you in your grave :
Tho' not for me, yet for

yoar

vehement oaths,
You should have been respective, and have kept it.
Give it a judge's clerk ! but well I know,
The clerk will ne'er wear hair on's face, that had it. -

Gra. He will, and if he live to be a man.
Ner. Ay, if a woman live to be a man.

Gra. Now, by this hand, I gave it to a youth;
A kind of boy, a little scrubbed boy,
No higher than thyself, the judge's clerk;
A prating boy, that begg'd it as a fee:
I could not for my heart deny it him.“

Por. You were to blame; I must be plain with you, a,
To part fo slightly with your wife's firit gift :
A thing stuck on with oaths upon your finger,
And riveted with faith unto your flesh.
I

gave my love a ring, and made him fwear :
Never to part with it; and here he stands,
I dare be sworn for him, he would not leave it, -
F.

Nor it;

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Nor pluck it from his finger, for the wealth
That the world masters. Now, in faith, Gratiano, .
You give your wife too unkind a cause of grief;
An 'twere to me, I thould be mad at it.,

Ball. Why, I were best to cut my left hand off,
And swear I loft the ring defending it. [Afide.

Gra. My lord Bassanio gave his ring away,
Unto the judge that begg': it, and, indeed,
Deserv'd it too; and then the boy, his clerk,
That took some pains in writing, he begg'd' mine ;
And neither man nor master would take aught,
But the two rings.

Por. What ring gave you, my lord ?
Not that, I hope, which you receiv'd of me.

Bal. If I could add a lie unto a fault,
I would deny it; but you seç my finger
Hath not the ring upon

is gore.
Por. Even so void is your false heart of tratha
By Heaven, I will ne'er come in your bed.
Until I see the ring.

Ner. Nor I in yours,
Till I again fee mine.

Bal: Sweet Portia,
If you did know to whom I gave the ring,
If you did know for whom I

gave And would conceive for what I

gave
And how unwillingly I left the ring,
When nought would be accepted but the ring,
You would abate the strength of your displeasure..

Por. If you had known the virtue of the rings-
Or half her worthiness that

gave

the ring,
your own honour to retain the ring,
You would not then have parted with the ring.
What man is there so much unreasonable,
If

you had pleas’d to have defended it,
With any terms of zeal, wanted the modesty
To urge the thing held as a ceremony?
Nerisa teaches me what to believe ;
I'll die for't but some woman had the ring:

Bal.. No, by mine honour, madam, by my foul;
No woman had it, but a civil doctor ;
Et 'n he that did uphold the very life.
Ot my dear friend.
Had you been there, I think, you would have begg'd
The ring of me, to give the worthy doctor, Poro

the ring,

the ring

Or

Por. Let not that doctor e'er come near my houfe ;
Since he hath got the jewel that I lov'd,
And that which you did swear to keep for meg
I will become as liberal as you ;
I'll not deny him any thing I have,
No, nor my body, nor my husband's bed.
Know him I shall, I am well sure of it.
Lie not a night from home ; watch me, like Argus ::
If

you do not, if I be left alone,
Now by mine honour, which is yet my own,
I'll have that doctor for iny bedfellow.

Ner. And I, his clerk; therefore be well advis'd, How you

do leave me to mine own protection.
Gra. Well, do you fo; let me not take him then ;
For if I do, I'll mar the young clerk's pen.

Anth. I am th' unhappy subject of these quarrels.
Por. Sir, grieve not you, you are welcome, notwith..'

standing
Bal. Pardon this fault, and by my soul, I swear,
I never more will break an oath with thee.

Anth. I once did lend my body for his weal;
Which but for him, that had

your
husband's

's ring,

[72 Portia. Had quite miscarry'd. I dare be bound again, My soul upon the forfeit, that your

lord Will never more break faith advisedly.

Por. Then thou shalt be his surety. Give him this, And bid him keep it better than the other.

Anik. Here, lord Balsanio, fivear to keep this ring,
Ball. By Hear'n, it is the faine I gave the doctor..

Por. I had it of him. Pardon me, Ballanio ;.
For by this ring, the doctor lay with me.

Ner. And pardon me, my gentle Gratiano,
For that same scrubbed boy, the doctor's clerk,
In lieu of this, last night did lie with me.

Gra. Why, this is like the mending of highways
In summer, where the ways are fair enough.
What! are we cuckolds, ere we have deserv'd it?

Por. Speak not so grosly. You are all amaz’d..
Here is a leuer, read it at your leisure ;
It comes from Padua, from Bellario.
There

you

shall find, that Portia was the doctor; Nenja, there, her clerk. Lorenzı, here, Shall witness I set forth as soon as you,

And

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And even but now return'd :-I have not yet
Enter'd

my

house. . Anthonio, you are welcome : And I have better news in store for

you,
Than you expect. Unseal this letter foon,
There you fhall find, three of your Argofies,
Are richly come to harbour, suddenly.
You shall not know by what strange accident":
I chanced on this letter,

Anth. I am dumb.
Baf. Were you the doctor and I knew you not?
Gar. Were you the clerk, that is to make me a:

cuckold?
Ner. Ay, but the clerk, that never means to do it,
Unless he live until he be a man.
Bal. Sweet doctor, you

shall be

my

bedfellow ; When I am absent, then lie with my wife.

Anth. Sweet lady, you have given me life and living;
For here, I read for certain, that my ships
Are fafely come to road.

Por. How now, Lorenzo ? :
My clerk hath some good comforts too, for you.

Ner. Ay, and I'll give them him without a fee.
There do I give to you and Jifica,
From the rich Jew, a special deed of gift,
After his death, of all he dies pofsest of.

Lor. Fair ladies, you drop Manna in the way
Of starved people.

Por. It is almost morning,
And yet, I'm sure, you are not satisfy'd
Of these events at full. Let us goin,
And charge us there, upon interr'gatories,
And we will answer all things faithfully.

Gra. Let it be fo : the first interr'gatory,
That my Nerisa shall be sworn on, is,
Whether till the next night, she had rather stay; :
-Or

go bow, being two hours to day. But were the day come, I should wish it dark, 'Till I were couching with the doctor's clerk. Well, while I live, I'll fear no other thing, So fore, as keeping safe Nerisa's ring [Exeunt omnes.*

This Act, though it falls infinitely below the Fourth, yet is supported by a considerable share of spirit; what it wants in :trength, it has in pleasantry.

to bed

THE END.

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