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For fear I surfeit ! [Opening the leaden casket.
Ball. What find I here? Fair Portia's counterfeit? What Demy-god Hath come so near creation ? Move these eyes? Or whether, riding on the balls of mine, Seem they in motion ? Here are sever'd lips Parted with sugar breath; so sweet a bar Should sunder such sweet friends. Here in her hairs The painter plays the spider; and hath woven A golden mesh to intrap the hearts of men, Fafter than gnats in cobwebs. How could he see to do them? having made one, Methinks, it should have power to steal both his, And leave itself unfurnish'd.' Yet look how far The substance of my praise doth wrong this shadow In underprizing it, so far this shadow Doth limp behind the substance. Here's the scrowl, The continent and summary of my fortune.
The folio and one of the quartos,
In measure raine rhy joy.
I once believ'd Shakespeare meant,
In measure rein thy joy. The words rain and rein were not in these times distinguished by regular orthography. There is no difficulty in the present read. ing, only where the copies vary fome suspicion of error is always railcd. JOHNSON.
I believe Shakespeare alluded to the well-known proverb, It cannot rain, but it peurso STEEVENS.
· Methinks it should have pow'r yo fleal both bis,
Ad leave itself unfurnish'd :-) I know not how unfinish'd has intruded without notice into the Jater editions, as the quartos and folio have unfurnished, which Sir Tho. Hanmer has received. Perhaps it might be, And leave himself unfurnib'd.
You that chuse not by the view,
Chance as fair, and chufe as true!
Since this fortune falls to you,
Be content, and seek no new.
If you be well pleas’d with this, ,
And hold your fortune for your bliss,
Turn you where your lady is,
And claim her with a loving kiss.
A gentle scrowl ;-Fair lady, by your leave-
I come by note, to give and to receive.
Like one of two contending in a prize,
That thinks he hath done well in people's eyes,
Hearing applause, and universal shout,
Giddy in spirit, still gazirg, in a doubt,
Whether those peals of praise be his or no;
So, thrice fair lady, stand I, even so,
As doubtful whether what I fee be true,
Until confirm’d, sign'd, ratify’d by you.
Por. You see, my lord Bassanio, where I stand,
Such as I am. Tho', for myself alone,
I would not be ambitious in my wish,
To wish myself much better ; yet, for you,
I would be trebled twenty times myself,
A thousand times more fair, ten thousand times
More rich; that, to stand high in your account,
I might in virtues, beauties, livings, friends,
Exceed account: but the full sum of me
Is fum of something; } which, to term in gross,
Is an unleffon'd girl, unschool'd, unpractis’d:
? Peals.] The second 4to reads, Pearles of praise. JOHNSON.
3 Is sum of something,-) We hould read, some of something,
i. e. only a piece, or part only of an imperfect account; which
the explains in the following line. WARBURTON, .
Thus one of the quartos. The folio reads,
Is fum of nothing.
Happy in this, he is not yet so old
But the may learn; and happier than this,
She is not bred so dull but she can learn
Happiest of all is, that her gentle spirit
Cominits itself to yours to be directed,
As from her lord, her governor, her king.
Myself, and what is mine, to you, and yours
Is now converted: but now I was the lord
Of this fair manfion, mafter of my fervants,
Queen o'er myself; and even now, but now,
This house, these servants, and this fame myself
Are yours, my lord ; I give them with this ring;
Which, when you part from, lose, or give away,
Let it presage the ruin of your love,
And be my vantage to exclaim on you.
Bal Madam, you have bereft me of all words,
Only my blood speaks to you in my veins :
And there is such confusion in my powers,
As, after some oration fairly spoke
By a beloved prince, there doth appear
Among the buzzing pleased multitude;
Where every something, being blent together,
Turns to a wild of nothing, save of joy,
Exprest, and not exprest. But when this ring
Parts from this finger, then parts life from hence ;
O, then be bold to say, Bassanio's dead.
Ner. My lord and lady, it is now our time, That have stood by, and seen our wishes prosper, To cry, good joy Good joy, my lord and lądy!
Grá. My lord Bassanio, and my gentle lady,
I wish you all the joy that you can wish;
For, I am sure, you can wish none 4 from me:
And when your honours mean to folemnize
The bargain of your faith, I do beseech you,
Even at that time I may be married too.
you can wish none from me:) That is, none away fror. me; none that I shall lose, if you gain it JOHNSON.
Bal. With all my heart, so thou canst get a wife.
Gra. I thank your lordship; you have got me onc.
My eyes, my lord, can look as swift as yours ;
You saw the mistress, I beheld the maid
You lov’d, I lov’d; for intermission
No more pertains to me, my lord, than you,
Your fortune stood upon the casket there;
And fo did mine too, as the matter falls :
For wooing here until I sweat again,
And swearing till my very roof was dry
With oaths of love; at last, if promise laft,
I got a promise of this fair one here,
To have her love, provided that your fortune
Atchiev'd her mistress.
Por. Is this true, Neriffa ?
Ner. Madam, it is, so you stand pleas’d withal.
Bal. And do you, Gratiano, mean good faith?
Gra. Yes, faith, my lord.
Baf. Our feast shall be much honour'd in your
marriage. Gra. We'll play with them, the first boy, for a thousand ducats.
Ner. What, and stake down?
Gra. No, we shall ne'er win at that sport, and
But who comes here? Lorenzo and his infidel?
What, and my old Venetian friend, Sałanio?
Enter Lorenzo, Jeffca, and Salanio. Ball. Lorenzo, and Salanio, welcome hither; If that the youth of my new interest here Have power to bid you welcome. By your leave, I bid my very friends and countrymen, Sweet Portia, welcome.
Por. So do I, my lord; they are entirely welcome. Ler. I thank your honour. For my part, my lord,
My purpose was not to have seen you here;
But meeting with Salanio by the way,
He did intreat me, paft all saying nay,
To come with him along.
Sal. I did, my lord,
And I have reason for't. Signior Anthonio
Commends him to you.
[Gives Bafanio a letter. Bas. Ere I ope his letter, I pray you tell me how my good friend doth.
Sal. Not sick, my lord, unless it be in mind; Nor well, unless in mind : his letter there Will shew you his estate. [Bassanio opens a letter,
Gra. Nerissa, cheer yon' stranger: bid her welcome. Your hand, Salanio; What's the news from Venice? How doth that royal merchant, good Anthonio? I know, he will be glad of our success: We are the Jasons, we have won the fleece. Sal. Would you had won the fleece, that he hath
lost ! Por. There are some shrewd contents in yon' fame
That steal the colour from Bassanio's cheek :
Some dear friend dead; else nothing in the world
Could turn so much the constitution
any constant man. What, worse and worse !
With leave, Bassanio, I am half yourself,
And I must have the half of any thing
That this fame paper brings you.
Bal. O sweet Portia,
Here are a few of the unpleasant'st words,
That ever blotted paper! Gentle lady,
When I did first impart my love to you,
I freely told you, all the wealth I had
Ran in my veins, I was a gentleman;
And then I told you true. And yet, dear lady,
Rating myself at nothing, you shall fee