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That I was worse than nothing. For, indeed,
I have engag'd my self to a dear friend,
Engag'd my Friend to his meer 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, Salanio ?
Have all his ventures fail'd? what not one hit ?
From Tripolis, from Mexico, from England,
From Lisbon, Barbary, and India?
And not one vessel 'scap'd the dreadful touch
Of merchant-marring rocks?
Sal. Not one, my lord.
Besides, it should appear, that if he had
The present mony 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.
Jer. When I was with him, I have heard him swear,
To Tubal and to Cbus his country-men,
That he would rather have Anthonio's flesh,
Than twenty times the value of the sum
That he did owe him; and I know, my lord,
If law, authority, and pow'r deny not,
It will go hard with poor Anthonio.
Por. Is it your dear friend, that is thus in trouble?
. Bal. The dearest friend to me, the kindeft Man, s The best condition'd: An unweary'd spirit
8 The best condition'd AND unweary'd spirit
In doing courtefies; --) To be read and pointed thus,
The be condition'd: AN unweary'd fpirit,
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?
Bal. For me, three thousand ducats.
Por. What, no more?
Pay him fix thousand and deface the bond;
Double fix thousand, and then treble that,
Before a Friend of this description
Shall lose a hair through my Basanio's fault.
First, go with me to church, and call me wife,
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
petty debt twenty times over. When it is paid, bring your true friend along; My maid Nerissa and my self, mean time, Will live as maids and widows: come, away! For you
shall hence upon your wedding-day, Bid your Friends welcome, shew a merry cheer ; Since you are dear bought, I will love you dear. But let me hear the letter of Ball. reads. SWEET Baffanio, my ships have all mis
carry'd, my creditors grow cruel, my estate is very low, my bond to the Jew is forfeit; and fince, in paying it, it is impossible I should live, all debts are cleared between you and me, if I might but see you at my death; notwithstanding, use your pleasure : if your love do not perfuade you to come, let not my letter.
Por. O love! dispatch all Business, and be gone.
Ball. 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. [Exeunt.
Ś CE Ν Ε IV.
Changes to a Street in Venice. Enter Shylock, Solarino, Anthonio, and the Goaler.
Oaler, look to him: tell not me of mercy.
This is the fool, that lent out mony gratis. Goaler, look to him.
Ant. Hear me yet, good Shylock.
Sby. I'll have my bond ; speak not against my bond: I've sworn an oath, that I will have my bond. Thou call'dit me dog, before thou hadít a cause; But since I am a dog, beware my fangs: The Duke shall grant me justice. I do wonder, Thou naughty goaler, that thou art fo fond To come abroad with him at his request.
Ant. I pray thee, hear me speak.
Sby. I'll have my bond; I will not hear thee speak : 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 interceffors. Follow not; I'll have no speaking; I will have my bond.
(Exit Shylock. Sola. It is the most impenetrable cur, That ever kept with men.
Ant. Let him alone,
I'll follow him no more with bootless pray’rs:
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.
Sola. I am sure, the Duke
Will never grant this Forfeiture to hold.
Ant. 9 The Duke cannot deny the course of law;
For 9 The Duke carnot deny, &c-] As the reason here given seems a little perplexed, it may be proper to explain it. If, says he,
For the commodity that strangers have
With us in Venice, if it be deny'd,
Will much impeach the justice of the state;
Since that the trade and profit of the city
Confifteth 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, goaler, on; pray God, Bassanio come
To see me pay his debt, and then I care not! (Exeunt.
Enter Portia, Neriffa, Lorenzo, Jessica, and Balthazar.
Lor. M Adam, although I speak it in your presence,
You have a noble and a true conceit
Of God-like amity; which appears most strongly
In bearing thus the absence of your lord.
But if you knew to whom you shew this honour,
How true a gentleman you send relief to,
How dear a lover of my lord your husband ;
I know, you would be prouder of the work,
Than customary bounty can enforce you.
Por. I never did repent of doing good,
And shall not now; for in companions
That do converse and waste the time together,
Whose fouls do bear an equal yoke of love,
There must needs be a like proportion
the Duke stop the course of law it will be attended with this inconvenience, that stranger merchants, by whom the wealth and power of this city is supported, will cry out of injustice. For the known stated law being their guide and security, they will never bear to have the current of it stoped on any pretence of equity whatsoever,
Of lineaments of manners, and of spirit;
Which makes me think, that this Antbonio,
Being the bofom-lover of my lord,
Must needs be like my lord. If it be so,
How little is the coft I have bestowed,
In purchasing the femblance of
From out the state of hellish cruelty?
This comes too near the praising of my felf;
Therefore, no more of it: (a) hear other things.
Lorenzo, I commit into your hands
The husbandry and manage of my house,
Until my lord's return. For mine own part,
I have tow’rd heaven breath'd a secret vow,
To live in prayer and contemplation,
Only attended by Nerisa here,
Untill her husband and my Lord's return, .
There is a monastery two miles off,
And there we will abide. I do defire you,
Not to deny this Imposition :
The which my love and some necessity
Now lays upon you.
Lor. Madam, with all my heart;
I 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 my felf.
So fare you well, 'till we shall meet again.
Lor. Fair thoughts and happy hours attend on
Fes. I wish your ladyship all heart's content.
1 Of lineaments, of manners, &c.-) The wrong pointing has made this fine fentiment nonsense. As implying that friendship could not only make a fimilitude of manners, but of faces. The true sense is, lineaments of manners, i. e. form of the manners, which, says the speaker, must need be proportionate.
[(a) Hear. Dr. Thirlby, -Vulg. here. ]