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MERCHANT OF VENICE.
Duke of Venice.
Salerio, a messenger from Venice.
servants to Portia.
lice, jailer, servants, and other attendonis. Scene, partly at Venice, and partly at Belmont, the
seat of Porlia, on the continent.
That such a thing, bechanc'd, would make me sed!
But, tell not inc; I know, Antonio SCENE I.-Venice. A street. . Enter Antonio, Is sad to think upon his merchandise. Salarino, and Salanio.
Hnt. Believe me, no: I thank my fortune for it, Antonio.
My ventures are not in one bottom trusted,
Nor to one place; nor is my whole estate
Therefore, my merchandise makes me not sad.
Fic, fie! I am to learn ;
Salan. Not in love ncither ? Then let's say, you And such a want-wit sadness makes of me,
are sad, That I have much ado to know myself.
Because you are not merry: and 'twere as easy Salar. Your mind is tossing on the ocean ;
For you to laugh, and lear, and say, you are merty, There, where your argosies! with portly sail, -- Because you are not sad. Now, by tiro-headed Like signiors and rich burghers of the flood,
Janus, Or, as it were the pageants of the sea,
Nature hath fram'd strange fellows in ber lime : Do overpeer the petty traffickers,
Some that will evermore pcep through their eyes, That curt'sy to them, do them reverence,
And laugh, like parrots, at a bag-piper ; As they fly by them with their woven wings.
And other of such vinegar aspect, Salan. Believe me, sir, had I such venture forth, That they'll not show their teeth in way of strile, The better part of my affections would
Though Nestor swear the jest be laughable. Be with my hopes abroad. I should be still Plucking the grass, to know where sits the wind; Enler Bassanio, Lorenzo, and Gratiano. Pcering in maps, for ports, and piers, and roads'; And every object, that might make me fear
Salan. llere comes Bassanio, your most noble Misfortune to my ventures, out of doubt,
kinsman, Would make me sad.
Gratiano, and Lorenzo : Fare you well; Salar.
My wind, cooling my broth, We leave you now with better company. Would blow me to an ague, when I thought
Salar. I would have staid till I had made you What harm a wind too great might do at sea.
merry, I should not see the sandy hour-glass run,
If worthier friend, had not prevented me. But I should think of shallows and of flats;
Ant. Your worth is very dear in my regard. And see my wealthy Andrew dock'd in sand,
I take it, your own business calls on you, Vailing? her high-top lower than her ribs,
And you embrace the occasion to depart. To kiss her burial. Should I go to church,
Salar. Good morrow, my good lords. And see the holy edifice of stone,
Bass. Good signiors both, when shall we laught And not bethink me straight of dangerous rocks? You grow exceeding strange : Must it be so?
Say, when ?
Salar. We'll make our leisures to attend on Enrobe the roaring waters with my silks ;
yours. (Ereunl Salarino and Salanio. And, in a word, but even now worth this,
Lor. My lord Bassanio, since you have found And now worth nothing ? Shall I have the thought Antonio, To think on this; and shall I lack the thought, We two will leave you : but at dinner-time,
I pray you, have in mind wacre me must meet (1) Ships of large burthen. (2) Lowering. Bass. I will not fail you
Gra. You look not well, signior Antonio ; Within the cye of honour, be assurd,
Bass. In my school-days, when I had lost one Ant. I hold the world but as the world, Gra- shaft, tiano ;
I shot his fellow of the self-same flight A stage, where every man must play a part, The self-same way, with more advised watch, And mine a sad one.
To find the other forth; and by advent'ring both, Gra.
Let me play the fool : I oft found both: I urge this childhood proof,
I owe you much; and, like a wilful youth,
Which you did shoot the first, I do not doubt,
Ant. You know me well; and herein spend but Do cream and mantle, like a standing pond;
time, And do a wilful stillness' entertain,
To wind about my love with circumstance; With purpose to be dress'd in an opinion And, out of doubt, you do me now more wrong, Of wisdom, gravity, profound conceit;
In making question of my uttermost, As who should say, I am sir Oracle,
Than if you had made waste of all I have: And, when I ope my lips, let no dog bark ! Then do but say to me what I should do, 0, my Antonio, I do know of these,
That in your knowledge may by me be done, That'therefore only are reputed wise,
And I am prest2 unto it: therefore, speak. For saying nothing ; who, I am very sure,
Bass. In Belmont is a lady richly left, If they should speak, would almost damn those ears, And she is fair, and, fairer than that word, Which, hearing them, would call their brothers, of wondrous virtues : sometimes from her eyes fools.
I did receive fair speechless messages : I'll tell thee more of this another time:
Her name is Portia ; nothing undervalued But fish not with this melancholy bait,
To Cato's daughter, Brutus' Portia. For this fool's gudgeon, this opinion.
Nor is the wide world ignorant of her worth; Come, good Lorenzo :-Fare ye well, a while; For the four winds blow in from every coast I'll end my exhortation after dinner.
Renowned suitors; and her sunny locks Lor. Well
, we will leave you then till dinner- Hang on her temples like a golden fleece ; time :
Which makes her seat of Belmont, Colchos' strand, I must be one of these same dumb wise men, And many Jasons come in quest of her. For Gratiano never lets me speak.
O my Antonio, had I but the means Gra. Well, keep me company but two ycars To hold a rival place with one of them, more,
I have a mind presages mc such thrist, Thou shalt not know the sound of thine own that I should questionless be fortunate. tongue.
Ant. Thou know'st, that all my fortunes are at Ant. Farewell: I'll grow a talker for this gear. Gra. Thanks, i'faith; for silence is only com- Nor have I money, nor commodity mendable
To raise a present sum: therefore go forth, In a neat's tongue dried, and a maid not vendible. Try what my credit can in Venice do;
(Exeunt Gratiano and Lorenzo. That shall be rack’d, even to the uttermost, Ant. Is that any thing now?
To furnish thee to Belmont, to fair Portia. Bass. Gratiano speaks an infinite dcal of nothing, Go, presently inquire, and so will I, more than any man in all Venice: His reasons are Where money is; and I no question make, as two grains of wheat hid in two bushels of chaff; To have it of my trust, or for my sake. (Exeuni, you shall seek all day ere you find them; and, when you have them, they are not worth the search.
SCENE II.-Belmont. A room in Portia's Ant. Well; tell me now, what lady is this same
house. Enter Portia and Nerissa. To whom you swore a secret pilgrimage,
Por. By my troth, Nerissa, my little body is That you to-day promis'd to tell me of?
aweary of this great world. Bass. 'Tis not unknown to you, Antonio, Ner. You would be, sweet madain, if your miseHow much I have disabled mine estate,
ries were in the same abundance as your good forBy something showing a more swelling port
And yet, for aught I see, they are as Than my faint means would grant continuance : sick, that surfeit with too much, as they that starve Nor do I now make moan to be abridg'd with nothing: It is no mean happiness therefore, to From such a noble rate; but my chief care be seated in the mean; superfiuity comes sooner by Is, to come fairly off from the great debts, white hairs, but competency lives longer. Wherein my time, something too prodigal,
Por. Good sentences, and well pronounced. Hath left me gaged: To you, Antonio,
Ner. They would be better, if ivell followed. I owe the most, in money, and in love ;
Por. If to do were as casy as to know what were And from your love I have a warranty
good to do, chapels had been churches, and poor To unburthen all my plots and purposes, men's cottages, princes' palaces. It is a good divine How to get clear of all the debts I owe.
that follows his own instructions: I can easier teach Ant. I pray you, good Bassanio, let me know it; twenty what were good to be done, than be one of And, if it stand, as you yourself still do, the twenty to follow mine own teaching. The brain (1) Obstinate silence. (2) Ready.
may devise laws for the blood; but a hot temper a beast: an the worst fall that ever fell, I hope, I Jeaps over a cold decree : such a hare is madness shall make shift to go without him. the youth, to skip o'er the meshes of good counsel Ner. If he should offer to choose, and choose the cripple. But this reasoning is not in the fashion the right casket, you should refuse to perform your to choose me a husband :-0 ine, the word choose! father's will, if you should refuse to accept himn. I may neither choose whom I would, nor refuse Por. Therefore, for fear of the worst, I pray who.n I dislike; so is the will of a living daughter thee, set a deep glass of Rhenish wine on the concuru'd by the will of a dead father:-Is it not hard, trary casket: for, if the devil be within, and that Nerissa, that I cannot choose one, nor refuse none ! temptation without, I know he will choose it. I
Ner. Your father was ever virtuous; and holy will do any thing, Nerissa, ere I will be married to men, at their death, have good inspirations; there-a spunge. fore, the lottery, that he hath devised in these three Ner. You need not fear, lady, the having any chests, of gold, silver, and lead, (whereof who of these lords; they have acquainted me with their chooses his mcaning, chooses you,) will, no doubt, determinations: which is, indeed, to return to their never be chosen by any rightly, but one who you home, and to trouble you with no more suit; unless shall rightly love. But what warmth is there in you may be won by some other sort than your layour affection towards any of these princely suitors ther's imposition, depending on the caskets. that are already come?
Por. If I live to be as old as Sybilla, I will die Por. I pray thee, over-name them; and as thou as chaste as Diana, unless I be obtained by the nainest them, I will describe them; and, according manner of my father's will: I am glad this parcel to my description, level at my affection.
of wooers are so reasonable ; for there is not one Ner. First, there is the Neapolitan prince. among them but I dote on his very absence, and I
Por. Ay, that's a colt,' indeed, for he doth no- pray God grant them a sair departure. thing but talk of his horse: and he makes it a great Ner. Do you not remember, lady, in your fa. appropriation to his own good varts, that he can ther's time, a Venetian, a scholar, and a soldier, shoe him himself: I am much afraid, my lady, his that came hither in company of the Marquis of mother, played false with a smith.
Montserrat ? Ner. Then is there the county? Palatine. Por. Yes, yes, it was Bassanio; as I think, so
Por. He does nothing but frown; as who should was he called. say, An if you will not have me, choose : he hears Ner. True, madam; he, of all the men that merry tales, and smiles not: I lear, he will prove ever my foolish eyes looked upon, was the best the weeping philosopher when he grows old, iring deserving a fair lady. so full of unmannerly sadness in his youth.' I had Por. I remember him well; and I remember rather be married to a death's head with a bone in him worthy of thy praise.--How now! what news? his mouth, than to either of these. God defend me from these two!
Enter a Servant. Ner. How say you by the French lord, Mon- Serr. The four strangers seek for you, madam, sieur Le Bon ?
to take their leave: and there is a forerunner come Por. God made him, and therefore let him pass from a fifth, the prince of Morocco ; who brings for a man. In truth, I know it is a sin to be a word, the prince, his master, will be here to-night. mocker: But, he! why, he hath a horse better than Por. If I could bid the fifth welcome with so the Neapolitan's; a better bad habit of frowning good heart as I can bid the other four farewell, I than the count Palatine : he is every man in no should be glad of his approach: if he have the man: if a throstle sing, he falls straight a caper-condition of a saint, and the complexion of a devil, ing; he will fence with his own shadow: if I should I had rather he should shrive me than wive me. marry him, I should marry twenty husbands: ICome, Nerissa.—Sirrah, go before.- Whiles we he would despise me, I would forgive him ; for it shut the gate upon one wooer, another knocks at he love me to madness, I shall never requite him.
(Ercunt. Ner. What say you then to Falconbridge, the SCENE III.-Venice. A public place. Enter young baron of England ? Por. You know, I say nothing to him: for he un
Bassanio and Shylock. derstands not me, nor I him: he hath neither Latin, Shy. Three thousand ducats,-well. French, nor Italian ; and you will come into the Bass. Av, sir, for three months. court and swear, that I have a poor penny-worth Shy. For three months,-well. in the English. He is a proper man's picture ; Bass. For the which, as I told you, Antonio But, alas! who can converse with a dumb show? I shall be bound. How oddly he is suited! I think he bought his Shy. Antonio shall become bound, -well. doublet in Italy, his round hose in France, his bon- Bass. May you stead me? Will you pleasure net in Germany, and his behaviour every where. me? Shall I know your answer?
Ner. What think you of the Scottish lord, bis Shy. Three thousand ducats, for three months, neighbour ?
and Antonio bound. Por. That he hath a neighbourly charity in him ; Bass. Your answer to that. for he borrowed a box of the ear of the English- Shy. Antonio is a good man. man, and swore he would pay him again, when he Bass. Have you heard any imputation to the was able : I think the Frenchman became his contrary? surety, and sealed under for another.
Shy. Ho, no, no, no, no ;-my meaning, in say Ner. How like you the young German, the duke ing he is a good man, is to have you understand of Saxony's nephew ?
me, that he is sufficient: yet his means are in sup. Por. Very vilely in the morning, when he is so- position : he hath an argosy bound to Tripolis, ber; and most vilely in the afternoon, when he is another to the Indies : I understand inoreover upor drunk: when he is best, he is a little worse than a the Rialto, he hath a third at Mexico, a fourth for man; and when he is worst, he is little better than England, and other ventures he hath, squan. (1) 4 heady, gay youngster, (2) Count.
(3) Temper, qualities,