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Bass. Madam, you have bereft me of all words, | Your hand, Salerio; What's the news from Venice?

Only my blood speaks to you in my veins :
And there is such confusion in my powers,
As, after some cration fairly spoke
By a beloved prince, there doth appear
Among the buzzing pleased multitude;
Where every something, being blent' together,
Turns to a wild of nothing, save of joy,
Express'd, and not express'd: But when this ring
Parts from this finger, then parts life from hence;
O, then be bold to say, Bassanio's dead.

Ner. My lord and lady, it is now our time,
That have stood by, and seen our wishes prosper,
To cry, good joy; Good joy, my lord, and lady!
Gra. My lord Bassanio, and my gentle lady!
I wish you all the joy that you can wish;
For, I am sure, you can wish none from me:
And, when your honours mean to solemnize
The bargain of your faith, I do beseech you
Even at that time I may be married too.

Bass. With all my heart, so thou canst get a wife.
Gra. I thank your lordship; you have got me one.
My eyes, my lord, can look as swift as yours:
You saw the mistress, I beheld the maid;
You lov'd, I lov'd'; for intermission

No more pertains to me, my lord, than you.
Your fortune stood upon the caskets there;
And so did mine too, as the matter falls:
For wooing here, until I sweat again;
And swearing, till my very roof was dry
With oaths of love; at last,-if promise lasi,-
I got a promise of this fair one here,

To have her love, provided that your fortune
Achiev'd her mistress.


Is this true, Nerissa?

Ner. Madam, it is, so you stand pleas'd withal.
Bass. And do you, Gratiano, mean good faith?
Gra. Yes, 'faith, my lord.

Bass. Our feast shall be much honour'd in your

Gra. We'll play with them, the first boy for thousand ducats.


Ner. What, and stake down?-
Gra. No; we shall ne'er win at that sport, and
stake down.-

But who comes here? Lorenzo, and his infidel?
What, my old Venetian friend, Salerio

Enter Lorenzo, Jessica, and Salerio.
Bass. Lorenzo, and Salerio, welcome hither;
If that the youth of my new interest here
Have power to bid you welcome :-By your leave
I bid my very friends and countrymen,
Sweet Portia, welcome.


They are entirely welcome.

So do I, my lord;


Lor. I thank your honour :-For my part,

My purpose was not to have seen you here;
But meeting with Salerio by the way,
He did entreat me, past all saying nay,
To come with him along.


And I have reason for it.
Commends him to you.


I did, my lord,
Signior Antonio
[Gives Bassanio a letter.
Ere I ope his letter,

I pray you, tell me how my good friend doth.
Sale. Not sick, my lord, unless it be in mind;
Nor well, unless in mind: his letter there

Will show you his estate.

How doth that royal merchant, good Antonio?
I know, he will be glad of our success;

We are the Jasons, we have won the fleece.
Sale. 'Would you had won the fleece that he
hath lost!

Por. There are some shrewd contents in yon'
same paper,

That steal the colour from Bassanio's cheek:
Some dear friend dead; else nothing in the world
Could turn so much the constitution

Of any constant man. What, worse and worse?—
With leave, Bassanio; I am half yourself,
And I must freely have the half of any thing
That this same paper brings you.


O sweet Portia,
Here are a few of the unpleasant'st words,
That ever blotted paper! Gentle lady,
When I did first impart my love to you,
freely told you, all the wealth I had
Ran in my veins, I was a gentleman;
And then I told you true: and yet, dear lady,
Rating myself at nothing, you shall see
How much I was a braggart: When I told you
My state was nothing, I should then have told you
That I was worse than nothing; for, indeed,
I have engag'd myself to a dear friend,
Engag'd my friend to his mere enemy,
To feed my means. Here is a letter, lady;
The paper as the body of my friend,
And every word in it a gaping wound,
Issuing life-blood.-But is it true, Salerio?
Have all his ventures fail'd? What, not one hit?
From Tripolis, from Mexico, and England,
From Lisbon, Barbary, and India?
And not one vessel 'scape the dreadful touch
Of merchant-marring rocks?


Not one, my lord.
Besides, it should appear, that if he had
The present money to discharge the Jew,
He would not take it: Never did I know
A creature, that did bear the shape of man,
So keen and greedy to confound a man:
He plies the duke at morning, and at night:
And doth impeach the freedom of the state,
If they deny him justice: twenty merchants,
The duke himself, and the magnificoes
Of greatest port, have all persuaded with him;
But none can drive him from the envious plea
Of forfeiture, of justice, and his bond.

Jes. When I was with him, I have heard him

To Tubal, and to Chus, his countrymen,
That he would rather have Antonio's flesh,
Than twenty times the value of the sum
That he did owe him: and I know, my lord,
If law, authority, and power deny not,
It will go hard with poor Antonio.

Por. Is it your dear friend, that is thus in trouble?
Bass. The dearest friend to me, the kindest man,
The best condition'd and unwearied spirit
In doing courtesies; and one in whom
The ancient Roman honour more appears,
Than any that draws breath in Italy.

Por. What sum owes he the Jew?
Bass. For me, three thousand ducats.

What, no more?
Pay him six thousand, and deface the bond;
Double six thousand, and then treble that,
Before a friend of this description

Gra. Nerissa, cheer yon' stranger; bid her wel- Shall lose a hair through Bassanio's fault.

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First, go with me to church, and call me wife

(3) The chief men.

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SCENE IV.-Belmont. A room in Portia's house. Enter Portia, Nerissa, Lorenzo, Jessica, and Balthazar.

Lor. Madam, although I speak it in your presence,

And then away to Venice to your friend;
For never shall you lie by Portia's side
With an unquiet soul. You shall have gold
To pay the petty debt twenty times over;
When it is paid, bring your true friend along :
My maid Nerissa, and myself, mean time,
Will live as maids and widows. Come, away;
For you shall hence upon your wedding-day: Of god-like amity; which appears most strongly
Bid your friends welcome, show a merry cheer:1 In bearing thus the absence of your lord.
Since you are dear bought, I will love you dear.-But, if you knew to whom you show this honour,
But let me hear the letter of your friend.
How true a gentleman you send relief,

You have a noble and a true conceit

Bass. [Reads.] Sweet Bassanio, my ships have How dear a lover of my lord your husband, all miscarried, my creditors grow cruel, my estate I know, you would be prouder of the work, is very low, my bond to the Jew is forfeit; and Than customary bounty can enforce you. since, in paying it, it is impossible I should live, Por. I never did repent for doing good, all debts are cleared between you and I, if I might Nor shall not now: for in companions but see you at my death: notwithstanding, use That do converse and waste the time together, your pleasure: if your love do not persuade you to Whose souls do bear an equal yoke of love, come, let not my letter. There must be needs a like proportion Of lineaments, of manners, and of spirit; Which makes me think, that this Antonio, Being the bosom lover of my lord, Must needs be like my lord: If it be so, How little is the cost I have bestow'd, In purchasing the semblance of my soul This comes too near the praising of myself; From, out the state of hellish cruelty? Therefore no more of it: hear other things.

Por. O love, despatch all business, and be gone.
Bass. Since I have your good leave to go away,
I will make haste: But, till I come again,
No bed shall e'er be guilty of my stay,

No rest be interposer 'twixt us twain.


SCENE III.-Venice. A street. Enter Shylock,
Salanio, Antonio, and Gaoler.

Shy. Gaoler, look to him;-Tell not me of Lorenzo, I commit into your hands


This is the fool that lent out money gratis ;-
Gaoler, look to him.

Hear me yet, good Shylock.
Shy. I'll have my bond; speak not against my

I have sworn an oath, that I will have:
my bond:
Thou call'dst me dog, before thou had'sť a cause:
But, since I am a dog, beware my fangs :
The duke shall grant me justice.-I do wonder,
Thou naughty gaoler, that thou art so fond2
To come abroad with him at his request.
Ant. I pray thee, hear me speak.

Shy. I'll have my bond; will not hear thee

I'll have my bond; and therefore speak no more.
I'll not be made a soft and dull-ey'd fool,
To shake the head, relent, and sigh, and yield
To Christian intercessors. Follow not;
I'll have no speaking; I will have my bond.

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[Exit Shylock. Salan. It is the most impenetrable cur, That ever kept with men.


Let him alone,

I'll follow him no more with bootless prayers.
He seeks my life; his reason well I know;
I oft deliver'd from his forfeitures
Many that have at times made moan to me;
Therefore he hates me.

I am sure, the duke
Will never grant this forfeiture to hold.
Ant. The duke cannot deny the course of law.
For the commodity that strangers have
With us in Venice, if it be denied,
Will much impeach the justice of the state;
Since that the trade and profit of the city
Consisteth of all nations. Therefore, go:
These griefs and losses have so 'bated me,
That I shall hardly spare a pound of flesh
To-morrow to my bloody creditor.-
Well, gaoler, on:-Pray God, Bassanio come
To see me pay this debt, and then I care not!

(1) Face.


(2) Foolish.

The husbandry and manage of my house,
Until my lord's return: for mine own part,
I have toward heaven breath'd a secret vow
To live in prayer and contemplation,
Only attended by Nerissa here,
Until her husband and my lord's return:
There is a monastery two miles off,
And there we will abide. I do desire you,
Not to deny this imposition;

The which my love, and some necessity,
Now lays upon you.

Madam, with all my heart;
shall obey you in all fair commands.
Por. My people do already know my mind,
And will acknowledge you and Jessica
In place of lord Bassanio and myself.
So fare you well, till we shall meet again.

Lor. Fair thoughts, and happy hours, attend on

Jes. I wish your ladyship all heart's content. Por. I thank you for your wish, and am well pleas'd

To wish it back on you: fare you well, Jessica.[Exeunt Jessica and Lorenzo.

Now, Balthazar,

As I have ever found thee honest, true,
So let me find thee still: Take this same letter,
And use thou all the endeavour of a man,
In speed to Padua; see thou render this
Into my cousin's hand, doctor Bellario;
And, look, what notes and garments he doth give

Bring them, I pray thee, with imagin'd speed
Unto the tranect, to the common ferry
Which trades to Venice :-waste no time in words,
But get thee gone; I shall be there before thee.

Balth. Madam, I go with all convenient speed.


Por. Come on, Nerissa; I have work in hand, That you yet know not of: we'll see our husbands, Before they think of us.


Shall they see us?
Por. They shall, Nerissa; but in such a habit,
That they shall think we are accomplished
With what we lack. I'll hold thee any wager,

When we are both accoutred like young men,.
I'll prove the prettier fellow of the two,
And wear my dagger with the braver grace;
And speak, between the change of man and boy,
With a reed voice; and turn two mincing steps
Into a manly stride; and speak of frays,
Like a fine bragging youth: and tell quaint lies,
How honourable ladies sought my love,
Which I denying, they fell sick and died;
I could not do withal;-then I'll repent
And wish, for all that, that I had not kill'd them:
And twenty of these puny lies I'll tell,
That men shall swear I have discontinued school
Above a twelvemonth:-I have within my mind
A thousand raw tricks of these bragging Jacks,
Which I will practise.

Why, shall we turn to mcn?
Por. Fie! what a question's that,
If thou wert near a lewd interpreter ?
But come, I'll tell thee all my whole device
When I am in my coach, which stays for us
At the park gate; and therefore haste away,
For we must measure twenty miles to-day.
SCENE V-The same. A Garden.

Launcelot and Jessica.

silence; and discourse grow commendable in none only but parrots.-Go in, sirrah; bid them prepare for dinner.

Laun. That is done, sir; they have all stomachs. Lor. Goodly lord, what a wit-snapper are you! then bid them prepare dinner.

Laun. That is done too, sir; only, cover is the word.

Lor. Will you cover then, sir?

Laun. Not so, sir, neither; I know my duty.

Lor. Yet more quarrelling with occasion! Wilt thou show the whole wealth of thy wit in an instant? I pray thec, understand a plain man in his plain meaning: go to thy fellows; bid them cover the table, serve in the meat, and we will come in to dinner.

Laun. For the table, sir, it shall be served in; for the meat, sir, it shall be covered; for your coming in to dinner, sir, why, let it be as humours and conceits shall govern. [Exit Launcelot. Lor. O dear discretion, how his words are suited!

[Exe. The fool hath planted in his memory An army of good words; And I do know Enter A many fools, that stand better place, Garnish'd like hun, that for a tricksy word the father are to be laid upon the children: there- How dost thou like the lord Bassanio's wife? Laun. Yes, truly:-for, look you, the sins of Defy the matter. How cheer'st thou Jessica ? And now, good sweet, say thy opinion, fore, I promise you, I fear you. I was always plain with you, and so now I speak my agitation of the The lord Bassanio live an upright life; Jes. Past all expressing: It is very meet, matter: Therefore, be of good cheer; for, truly, For, having such a blessing in his lady, I think, you are damn'd. There is but one hope in it that can do you any good; and that is but a kind He finds the joys of heaven here on earth; of bastard hope neither. And, if on earth he do not mean it, it

Jes. And what hope is that, I pray thee? Laun. Marry, you may partly hope that your father got you not, that you are not the Jew's daughter.

Jes. That were a kind of bastard hope, indeed; so the sins of my mother should be visited upon me. Laun. Truly then I fear you are damn'd both by father and mother: thus when I shun Scylla, your father, I fall into Charybdis, your mother: well, you are gone both ways.

Jes. I shall be saved by my husband; he hath made me a Christian.

Is reason he should never come to heaven.
And on the wager lay two earthly women,
Why, if two gods should play some heavenly match,
And Portia one, there must be something else
Hath not her fellow.
Pawn'd with the other; for the poor rude world


Even such a husband

Hast thou of me, as she is for a wife.
Jes. Nay, but ask my opinion too of that.
Lor. I will anon; first, let us go to dinner.
Jes. Nay, let me praise you, while I have &


Laun. Truly, the more to blame he: we were Then, howsoc'er thou speak'st, 'mong other things Lor. No, pray thee, let it serve for table-talk, Christians enough before; e'en as many as could I shall digest it. well live, one by another: This making of Christians will raise the price of hogs; if we grow all to be pork-caters, we shall not shortly have a rasher on The coals for money.

Enter Lorenzo.

Jés. I'll tell my husband, Launcelot, what you say; here he comes. Lo. I shall grow jealous of you shortly, Launcelot, if you thus get my wife into corners.


Well, I'll set you forth. [Exe.


SCENE I.-Venice. A court of Justice. Enter
Gratiano, Salurino, Salanio, and others.
the Duke, the Magnificoes; Antonio, Bassanio,

Duke. What, is Antonio here?
Ant. Ready, so please your grace.
Duke. I am sorry for thee; thou art come to an-


I have heard,

Jes. Nay, you need not fear us, Lorenzo; Launcelot and I are out: he tells me flatly, there is no mercy for me in heaven, because I am a Jew's daughter: and he says, you are no good member of the commonwealth; for, in converting Jews to A stony adversary, an inhuman wretch Christians, you raise the price of pork. Uncapable of pity, void and empty Lor. I shall answer that better to the common-From any dram of mercy. wealth, than you can the getting up of the negro's Ant. belly: the Moor is with child by you, Launcelot. Your grace hath ta'en great pains to qualify Daun. It is much, that the Moor should be more His rigorous course; but since he stands obdurate, than reason but if she be less than an honest And that no lawful mean can carry me woman, she is, indeed, more than I took her for. Out of his envy's' reach, I do oppose Lor. How every fool can play upon the word! My patience to his fury; and am arm'd Think, the best grace of wit will shortly turn into To suffer, with a quietness of spirit, The very tyranny and rage of his. (1) Hatred, malice..

Duke Go one and call the Jew into the court..

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