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Gra. We have not made good preparation.
Salar. We have not spoke us yet of torch-bearers.

Salan. 'Tis vile, unless it may be quaintly order'd;
And better, in my mind, not undertook.

Lor. 'Tis now but four o'clock; we have two hours To furnish us:

it writ on,

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Enter LAUNCELOT, with a Letter.

Friend Launcelot, what's the news? Laun. An it shall please you to break up this, it shall seem to signify.

Lor. I know the hand : in faith, 'tis a fair hand; And whiter than the

paper Is the fair hand that writ. Gra.

Love-news, in faith.
Laun. By your leave, sir,
Lor. Whither goest thou ?

Laun. Marry, sir, to bid my old master the Jew to sup to-night with my new master the Christian.

Lor. Hold here, take this :— tell gentle Jessica, I will not fail her;- speak it privately; go.Gentlemen,

[Exit LAUNCELOT.
Will you prepare you for this masque to-night?
I am provided of a torch-bearer.

Salar. Ay, marry, I'll be gone about it straight.
Salan. And so will I.
Lor.

Meet me, and Gratiano,
At Gratiano's lodging some hour hence.
Salar. 'Tis good we do so.

[Exeunt SALAR, and SALAN. Gra. Was not that letter from fair Jessica ?

Lor. I must needs tell thee all : She hath directed,
How I shall take her from lier father's house;
What gold, and jewels, she is furnish'd with;
What page's suit she hath in readiness.
Come, go with me; peruse this, as thou goest:
Fair Jessica shall be my torch-bearer. -

[Exeunt.

SCENE V.

Before Shylock's House.

Enter SHYLOCK and LAUNCELOT.
Shy. Well, thou shalt see, thy eyes shall be thy

judge,
The difference of old Shylock and Bassanio :
What, Jessica ! – thou shalt not gormandize,
As thou hast done with me; What, Jessica !
And sleep and snore, and rend apparel out;-
Why, Jessica, I say !
Laun,

Why, Jessica!
Shy. Who bids thee call ? I do not bid thee call.

Laun. Your worship was wont to tell me, I could do nothing without bidding.

Enter JESSICA.

But yet

Jes. Call you? What is your

will ?
Shy. I am bid' forth to supper, Jessica ;
There are my keys: - But wherefore should I go?
I am not bid for love; they flatter me:

I'll
go

in hate, to feed upon
The prodigal Christian.- Jessica, my girl,
Look to my house: – I am right loth to go;
There is some ill a brewing towards my rest,
For I did dream of money-bags to-night.

Laun. I beseech you, sir, go; my young master doth expect your reproach.

Shy. So do I his. Laun. And they have conspired together, “I will not say, you shall see a mask; but if you do, then it was not for nothing that my nose fell a bleeding on Black-Monday last, at six o'clock i'the morning Shý. What! are there masques? 'Hear you me, Jessica :

Invited.

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go.- Go

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Lock up my doors; and when you hear the drum,
And the vile squeaking of the wry-neck'd fife,
Clamber not you up to the casements then,
Nor thrust your head into the publick street,
To gaze on Christian fools with varnish'd faces :
But stop my house's ears, I mean my casements ;
Let not the sound of shallow foppery enter
My sober house. - By Jacob's staff

, I swear, I have no mind of feasting forth to-night : But I will

you
before

me,

sirrah; Say, I will come. Laun.

I will

l go before, sir. Mistress, look out at window, for all this' ;

There will come a Christian by,
Will be worth a Jewess' eye.

[Exit Laun.
Shy. What says that fool of Hagar's offspring, ha?
Jes. His words were, Farewell, mistress ; nothing

else.
Shy. The patch is kind enough; but a huge feeder.
Snail-slow in profit, and he sleeps by day
More than the wild cat; drones hive not with me;
Therefore I part with him ; and part with him
To one that I would have him help to waste
His borrow'd

purse.

Well, Jessica, go in;
Perhaps, I will return immediately ;
Do, as I bid you,
Shut doors after you: Fast bind, fast find;
A proverb never stale in thrifty mind. [Erit.

Jes. Farewell: and if my fortune be not crost,
I have a father, you a daughter, lost.

[Exit.

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SCENE VI.

The same.

Enter GRATIANOʻand SALARINO, masked.
Gra. This is the pent-house, under which Lorenzo
Desir'd us to make stand.

Salar.

His hour is almost past.
Gra. And it is marvel he out-dwells his hour,
For lovers ever run before the clock.

Salar. O, ten times faster Venus' pigeons fly
To seal love's bonds new made, than they are wont,
To keep obliged faith unforfeited!

Gra. That ever holds: Who riseth from a feast,
With that keen appetite that he sits down?
Where is the horse that doth untread again
His tedious measures with the unbated fire
That he did pace them first? All things that are,
Are with more spirit chased than enjoy'd.
How like a younker, or a prodigal,
The scarfed bark puts from her native bay.
How like the prodigal doth she return;
With over-weather d ribs, and ragged sails.

Enter LORENZO.

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Salar. Here comes Lorenzo ; - more of this

hereafter.
Lor. Sweet friends, your patience for my long

abode;
Not I, but my affairs, have made

you
When you shall please to play the thieves for wives,
I'll watch as long for you

then. Approach; Here dwells my father Jew :-Ho! who's within.

wait;

Enter Jessica above, in Boy's clothes.
Jes. Who are you

u ? Tell

me,

for more certainty,
Albeit I'll swear that I do know your tongue.
Lor. Lorenzo, and thy love.

Jes. Lorenzo, certain ; and my love, indeed ;
For who love I so much? And now who knows,
But you, Lorenzo, whether I am yours ?
Lor. Heaven, and thy thoughts, are witness that

thou art.

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Jes. Here, catch this casket, it is worth the pains.
I am glad 'tis night, you do not look on me,
For I am much asham’d of my exchange:
But love is blind, and lovers cannot see

The pretty follies that themselves commit;
For if they could, Cupid himself would blush
To see me thus transformed to a boy.
Lor. Descend, for you

must be

my

torch-bearer.
Jes. What, must I hold a candle to my shames?
They in themselves, good sooth, are too too light.
Why, 'tis an office of discovery, love;
And I should be obscur’d.
Lor:

So are you, sweet,
Even in the lovely garnish of a boy.
But come at once;
For the close night doth play the run-away,
And we are staid for at Bassanio's feast.
Jes. I will make fast the doors, and join you
straight.

(Exit, from above. Gra. Now, by my hood, a Gentile, and no Jew.

Lor. Beshrew me, but I love her heartily:
For she is wise, if I can judge of her ;
And fair she is, if that mine eyes be true;
And true she is, as she hath prov'd herself;
And therefore, like herself, wise, fair, and true,
Shall she be placed in my constant soul.

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Enter Jessica, below.
What, art thou come? On, gentlemen, away ;
Our masquing mates by this time for us stay.

[Exit with JESSICA and SALARINO.

Enter ANTONIO.

Ant. Who's there?
Gra. Signior Antonio ?

Ant. Fye, fye, Gratiano ? where are all the rest? 'Tis nine o'clock; our friends all stay for you:

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