Abbildungen der Seite

his palm.] if any man in Italy have a fairer table, which doth offer to swear upon a book, I shall have good fortune. Go to, here's a simple line of life! Here's a small trifle of wives. Alas, fifteen wives is nothing; eleven widows, and nine maids, is a simple coming-in for one man, and then, to 'scape drowning thrice ; and to be in peril of my life with the edge of a feather-bed ;-here are simple 'scapes! Well, if fortune be a woman, she's a good wench for this gear. -Father, come ; I'll take my leave of the Jew in the twinkling of an eye.

[Exeunt LAUNCELOT and old GoBBO. Bass.' I pray thee, good Leonardo, think on this; These things being bought, and orderly bestowed, Return in haste, for I do feast to-night My best-esteemed acquaintance ; hie thee, go. Leon. My best endeavors shall be done herein.

Enter GRATIANO. Gra. Where is your master ? Leon.

Yonder, sir, he walks.

[Exit LEONARDO. Gra. Seignior Bassanio,Bass. Gratiano ! Gra. I have a suit to you. Bass.

You have obtained it. Gra. You must not deny me;

go with you to Belmont. Bass. Why, then you must !but

must!-but hear thee, Gratiano; Thou art too wild, too rude, and bold of voice; Parts that become thee happily enough, And in such eyes as ours appear not faults ; But where thou art not known, why, there they show Something too liberal ; 1—pray thee, take pain To allay with some cold drops of modesty Thy skipping spirit; lest, through thy wild behavior I be misconstrued in the place I go to, And lose my hopes.

I must go

1 Gross.



Seignior Bassanio, hear me.
If I do not put on a sober habit,
Talk with respect, and swear but now and then,
Wear prayer-books in my pocket, look demurely;
Nay, more, while grace is saying, hood mine eyes
Thus with my hat, and sigh, and say, Amen;
Use all the observance of civility,
Like one well studied in a sad ostent
To please his grandam, never trust me more.

Bass. Well, we shall see your bearing.

Gra. Nay, but I bar to-night; you shall not gage me
By what we do to-night.

No, that were pity ;
I would entreat you rather to put on
Your boldest suit of mirth, for we have friends
That purpose merriment. But fare you well;
I have some business.

Gra. And I must to Lorenzo, and the rest ;
But we will visit you at supper-time.


SCENE III. The same. A Room in Shylock's


Jess. I am sorry, thou wilt leave my father so;
Our house is hell, and thou, a merry devil,
Didst rob it of some taste of tediousness.
But fare thee well; there is a ducat for thee.
And, Launcelot, soon at supper shalt thou see
Lorenzo, who is thy new master's guest.
Give him this letter; do it secretly;
And so farewell; I would not have my father
See me talk with thee.

Laun. Adieu !—Tears exhibit my tongue.-Most beautiful pagan,-most sweet Jew! If a Christian did

1 It was anciently the custom to wear the hat during dinner.

2 i. e. grave appearance. Ostent is a word very commonly used for show by old dramatic writers.



not play the knave, and get thee, I am much deceived. But adieu! These foolish drops do somewhat drown my manly spirit; adieu!

[Exit. Jess. Farewell, good Launcelot. Alack, what heinous sin is it in me To be ashamed to be my father's child ! But though I am a daughter to his blood, I am not to his manners. O Lorenzo, If thou keep promise, I shall end this strife; Become a Christian, and thy loving wife. [Exit.


The same.

A Street.


Lor. Nay, we will slink away in supper-time;
Disguise us at my lodging, and return
All in an hour.

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 ordered; And better, in my mind, not undertook.

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

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 it writ on,
Is the fair hand that writ.

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.

i To break up was a term in carving.

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 mask to-night? I am provided of a torch-bearer.

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

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 her father's house ; What gold, and jewels, she is furnished with; What page's suit she hath in readiness. If e'er the Jew her father come to heaven, It will be for his gentle daughter's sake; And never dare misfortune cross her foot, Unless she do it under this excuse, That she is issue to a faithless Jew. Come, go with me; peruse this, as thou goest; Fair Jessica shall be my torch-bearer. [Exeunt.


The same.

Before Shylock's House.

Shy. Well, thou shalt see, thy eyes shall be thy

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!

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.


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:

yet I'll go in hate, to feed upon
The prodigal Christian.— Jessica, my girl,
Look to my house. I am right loath 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, falling out that year on Ash Wednesday, was four year in the afternoon. Shy. What! are there masks? Hear you me, ,

Lock up my doors; and when you hear the drum,
And the vile squeaking of the wry-necked fife,
Clamber not you up to the casements then,
Nor thrust your head into the public street,
To gaze on Christian fools with varnished 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 go.—Go you before me, sirrah;
Say, I will come.

I will go before, sir ;-
Mistress, look out at window for all this;

1 i. e. Easter-Monday. It was called Black-Monday from the severity of that day, April 14, 1360, which was so extraordinary, that, of Edward the Third's soldiers, then before Paris, many died of the cold. Anciently a superstitious belief was annexed to the accident of bleeding at the nose.

« ZurückWeiter »