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Sol. The villain Jew with outcries rais'd the Duke,
Who went with him to search Bassanio's ship.

Sal. He came too late, the ship was under sail ;
But there the Duke was given to understand
That in a gondola were seen together
Lorenzo and his amorous Jessica:
Besides, Antonio certified the Duke
They were not with Bassanio in his ship.

Sol. I never heard a passion so confus’d,
So strange, outrageous, and so variable,
As the dog Jew (lid utter in the streets :
My daughter! - O my ducats ! - O my daughter !
Fled with a Christian ! 0

my Christian ducats !
Justice! the law ! my ducats, and my daughter !
A sealed bag, two sealed bags of ducats,
Of double ducats, stoln from me by my daughter !
Ånd jewels,

two stones, two rich and precious stones,
tol'n by my daughter! - Justice! find the girl!
She hath the stones upon her, and the ducats !

Sal. Why, all the boys in Venice follow him,
Crying, - his stones, his daughter, and his ducats. .

Sol. Let good Antonio look he keep his day,
Or he shall pay for this.

Marry, well remember'd.
I reason'd with a Frenchman yesterday,
Who told me, in the narrow seas that part
The French and English, there miscarried
A vessel of our country richly fraught:
I thought upon Antonio when he told me;
And wish'd in silence that it were not his.
Sol. You were best to tell Antonio what


hear; Yet do not suddenly, for it may grieve him.

Sal. A kinder gentleman treads not the earth.
I saw Bassanio and Antonio part.
Bassanio told him he would make some speed
Of his return: he answer’d, Do not so;
Slubber not business for my sake, Bassanio,
But stay the very riping of the time :
And for the Jew's bond which he hath of me,
Let it not enter in your mind of love.3

1 The Poet uses both reason and question in the sense of converse. - Marry, as stated page 24, note 5, was a colloquial intensive, which probably grew into use from a custom of swearing by St. Mary the Virgin.

2 To slubber is to do a thing carelessly. Thus, in Fuller's Worthies of Yorkshire: Slightly slubbering it over, doing something for show, and nothing to purpose."

3 Mind of love probably means loving mind, or mind full of love. The Poet elsewhere has inind ojo honour for honourable mind.



Be merry; and employ your chiefest thoughts
To courtship, and such fair ostents of love 4
As shall conveniently become you there.
And even then, his eye being big with tears,
Turning his face, he put his hand behind him,
And with affection wondrous sensible

Bassanio's hand; and so they parted.
Sol. I think he only loves the world for him.
I pray thee, let us go and find him out,
And quicken his embraced heaviness 5
With some delight or other.

Do we so.


SCENE VIII. Belmont. A Room in PORTIA's House.

Enter NERISSA, with a Servant. Ner. Quick, quick, I pray thee; draw the curtain straight: The Prince of Arragon hath ta’en his oath, And comes to his election presently. Flourish of Cornets. Enter the Prince of Arragon, PORTIA,

and their Trains. Por. Behold, there stand the caskets, noble Prince: If you

choose that wherein I am contain’d,
Straight shall our nuptial rites be solemniz'd;
But if you fail, without more speech, my lord,
You must be gone from hence immediately.

Ar. I am enjoin’d by oath ť observe three things :
First, never to unfold to any one
Which casket 'twas I chose; next, if I fail
Of the right casket, never in my

To woo a maid in way of marriage; lastly,
If I do fail in fortune of my choice,
Immediately to leave you and be gone.

Por. To these injunctions every one doth swear
That comes to hazard for my worthless self.

Ar. And so have I address'd me. Fortune now
To my heart's hope !— Gold, silver, and base lead.
Who chooseth me must give and hazard all he hath.
You shall look fairer, ere I give or hazard.

the golden chest, ha ? let me see:
Who chooseth me shall gain what many men desire.
What many men desire ! — That many may be meant

4 See page 120, note 25. 6 The heaviness he is fond of, or cherishes. 1 Address'd is prepared, made ready. See page 94, note 19.


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By the fool multitude,2 that choose by show,
Not learning more than the fond eye doth teach ;
Which pries not to th’interior, but, like the martlet,
Builds in the weather on the outward wall,
Even in the force and road of casualty.
I will not choose what many men desire,
Because I will not jump with common spirits,
And rank me with the barbarous multitude.
Why, then to thee, thou silver treasure-house;
Tell me once more what title thou dost bear:
Who chooseth me shall get as much as he deserves.
And well said too; for who shall go about
To cozen Fortune, and be honourable
Without the stamp of merit ? Let none presume
To wear an undeserved dignity.
O, that estates, degrees, and offices,
Were not deriv'd corruptly! and that clear honour
Were purchas’d by the merit of the wearer!

then should cover that stand bare !
How many be commanded that command !
How much low peasantry would then be glean'd
From the true seed of honour! and how much honour
Pick'd from the chaff and ruin of the times,
To be new-varnish’d! Well, but to my choice:
Who chooseth me shall get as much as he deserves.
I will assume desert. - Give me a key for this,
And instantly unlock my fortunes here.

Por. Too long a pause for that which you find there.

Ar. What's here? the portrait of a blinking idiot,
Presenting me a schedule! I will read it.
How much unlike art thou to Portia !
How much unlike my hopes and my deservings!
Who chooseth me shall get as much as he deserves.
Did I deserve no more than a fool's head ?
Is that my prize? are my deserts no better?

Por. T' offend, and judge, are distinct offices,
And of opposed natures.

What is here?
The fire seven times tried this:
Seven times tried that judgment is,
That did never choose amiss.
Some there be that shadows kiss ;
Such have but a shadow's bliss.

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2 By again for of. See page 106, note 7.
8 To jump with is to agree with.

There be fools alive, I wis,
Silver'd o'er ; and so was this.
Take what wife you will to bed,
I will ever be your

So be gone, sir; you are sped.
Still more fool I shall appear
By the time I linger here:
With one fool's head I came to woo,
But I go away with two. -
Sweet, adieu. I'll keep my oath,
Patiently to bear my wroth."

[Exeunt Arragon and Train.
Por. Thus hath the candle sing'd the moth.
O, these deliberate fools! when they do choose,
They have the wisdom by their wit to lose.

Ner. The ancient saying is no heresy :
Hanging and wiving goes by destiny.
Por. Come, draw the curtain, Nerissa.

Enter a Servant.
Serv. Where is my lady?

Here: what would my lord ? 8
Serv. Madam, there is alighted at your gate
A young Venetian, one that comes before
To signify th' approaching of his lord,
From whom he bringeth sensible regreets ;'
To wit, besides commends and courteous breath,
Gifts of rich value. Yet I have not seen
So likely an ambassador of love :
A day in April never came so sweet,
To show how costly Summer was at hand,
As this fore-spurrer comes before his lord.
Por. No

thee: I am half afeard Thou’lt say anon he is some kin to thee,

4 An apparent oversight of the Poet's: the Prince was sworn woo a maid in way of marriage.” Perhaps, though, he might woo and marry a widow.

5 Wroth is used in some of the old writers for suffering. Thus, in Chapman's 22d Viad: " Born all to wroth of woe and labour.” The original meaning of wrath is pain, grief, anger, any thing that makes one writhe ; and the text exemplifies a common form of speech, putting the effect for the

6 A merry reply to the Messenger's “ Where is my lady?" So, in Richard II., Act v. scene 5, the Groom says to the King, Hail, royal prince !" and he replies, “ Thanks, noble peer.And in 1 Henry IV., Act ii scene 4, the Hostess says to Prince Henry, O Jesu! my lord, the prince;” and he replies, “How now, my lady, the hostess!”

7 Sensible regreets are feeling salutations, or salutations that may be felt, such as valuable presents.


I pray

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never to



Thou spend’st such high-day wit in praising him.
Come, come, Nerissa; for I long to see
Quick Cupid's post that comes so mannerly.

Ner. Bassanio, Lord Love, if thy will it be!


ACT III. SCENE I. Venice. A Street.

Enter SOLANIO and SALARINO. Sol. Now, what news on the Rialto ?

Sal. Why, yet it lives there uncheck’d, that Antonio hath a ship of rich lading wreck'd on the narrow seas; the Goodwins,' I think they call the place; a very dangerous flat and fatal, where the carcasses of many a tall ship lie buried, as they say, if my gossip Report be an honest woman of her word.

Sol. I would she were as lying a gossip in that as ever knapp'd ginger, or made her neighbours believe she wept for the death of a third husband. But it is true, without any slips of prolixity, or crossing the plain highway of talk, that the good Antonio, the honest Antonio, — O, that I had a title good enough to keep his name company!

Sal. Come, the full stop.
Sol. Ha,

what say'st thou ? · Why, the end is, he hath lost a ship.

Sal. I would it might prove the end of his losses.

Sol. Let me say amen betimes, lest the Devil cross my prayer; for here he comes in the likeness of a Jew.

How now, Shylock ! what news among the merchants ?

Shy. You knew, none so well, none so well as you, my daughter's flight.

Sal. That's certain : I, for my part, knew the tailor that made the wings she flew withal.3

Sol. And Shylock, for his own part, knew the bird was fledg’d; and then it is the complexion of them all to leave the dam.4



1 The Goodwin Sands, as they were called, lay off the eastern coast of Kent. The name was supposed to have been derived from Earl Godwin, whose lands were said to have been swallowed up there in the year 1100. In King John, v. 5, it is said that the supplies expected by the French“ cast away and sunk on Goodwin Sands."

2 To‘knap is to break short. The word occurs in the Book of Common Prayer : “ He knappeth the spear in sunder.

8° Salarino probably has a sly allusion to the dress in which Jessica eloped.

4 Complexion was much used for natural temperament, or constitutional

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