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I would out-stare the sternest eyes that look,
Out-brave the heart most daring on the earth,
Pluck the young sucking cubs from the the bear,
Yea, mock the lion when he roars for prey,
To win thee, lady. But, alas the while !
If Hercules and Lichas play at dice
Which is the better man, the greater throw
May turn by fortune from the

weaker hand :
So is Alcides beaten by his page ; (5)
And so may I, blind fortune leading me,
Miss that, which one unworthier may attain ;
And die with grieving.

Por. You must take your chance,
And either not attempt to chuse at all,
Or swear, before you chuse, if you chuse wrong,
Never to speak to lady afterward
In way of marriage; therefore, be advis'd.

Mor. Nor will not; therefore, bring me to my chance.

Por. First, forward to the temple ; after dinner Your hazard shall be made.

ز

(5) So is Alcides beaten by bis Rage.] Tho' the whole Set of Editions concur in this Reading, and it pass’d wholly unsuspected by the late Learned Editor ; I am very well assur’d, and, I dare say, the Readers will be fo too presently, that it is corrupt. at Bottom. Let us look into the Poet's Drift, and the History of the Persons mention'd in the Context. If Hercules (says he) and Licbas were to play at Dice for the Decision of their Superiority, Licbas, the weaker Man, might have the better Cast of the Two. But how then is Alcides beaten by his rage? The Poet means no more, than, if Licbas had the better Throw, so might Hercules himself be beaten by Licbas. And who was He, but a poor unfortunate Servant of Hercules, that unknowingly brought his Mafter the envenom'd Shirt, dipt in the blood of the Centaur Neffus, and was thrown headlong into the Sea for his pains ? This one Circumstance of Licbas & Quality known sufficiently ascertains the Emendation, I have substituted of page instead of rage. It is fcarce requisite to hint here, it is a Point so well known, that Page has been always us'd in Engliso to signify any, Boy-Servant : as well as what latter Times have appropriated it to, a Lady's Trainbearer,

Aler,

E 5

Mor. Good fortune then,

Cornets. To make me bleft, or cursed’ft among men! Exeunt.

SCENE changes to Venice.

Enter Launcelot alone. Laun. CErtainly, my conscience will serve me to run

from this Jer my master. The fiend is at mine elbow, and tempts me, faying to me, Gobbo, Launcelot Gobbo, good' Launcelot, or good Gobbo, or good Launcelot Gobbe, use your legs, take the start, run away. My conscience fays, no; take heed, honeft Launcelot ; take heed, honeft Gobbo; or, as aforesaid, honest Launcelot Gobbo, do not run ; scorn running with thy heels. Well, the most courageous fiend bids me pack ; via! says the fiend ; away ! says the fiend; for the heav'ns rouse up a brave mind, says the fiend, and run. Well, my conscience, hanging about the neck of my heart, says very wisely to me, my honest friend Launcelot, being an honest man's son, or rather an honest woman's son (for indeed, my father did something smack, fomething grow to; he had a kind of tafte well, my conscience fays, budge not ; budge, fays the fiend ; budge not, fays my conscience; conscience, fay I, you counsel ill; fiend, fay I, you counsel ill. To be ruld by my conscience, I should stay with the Jew my master, who, God bless the mark, is a kind of devil; and to run away from the Jew, I should be ruled by the fiend, who, faving your reverence, is the devil himself. Certainly, the Jew is the very devil incarnal ; and in my conscience, my conscience is but a kind of hard conscience, to offer to counsel me to stay with the Jew. The fiend gives the more friendly counsel; I will run, fiend, my heels are at your commandment, I will run.

Enter old Gobbo, with a basket. Gob. Mafter young man, you,

I

pray you, which is the way to master Jew's?

Laun. O heav'ns, this is my true begotten father, who being more than fand-blind, high gravel-blind, knows me not ; I will try confusions with him.

Geb.

5

of

Gob. Mafter young Gentleman, I pray you, which is the way to master Jew's ?

Laun. Turn up, on your right hand at the next turning, but, at the next turning of all, on your left; marry, at the very next turning turn of no hand, but turn; down indirectly to the Jeru's house,

Gob. By God's fonties, 'twill be a hard way to hit : can you tell me whether one Launcelot, that dwells with him, dwell with him or no ?

Laun. Talk you of young master Launcelot ? (mark me now, now will I raise the waters ;) talk you of young master Launcelot ?

Gob. No master, Sir, but a poor man's son. His fa. ther, though I say't, is an honest exceeding poor man, and, God be thanked, well to live.

Laun. Well, let his father be what he will, we talk
young

master Launcelot.
Gob. Your worship's friend and Launcelot, Sir.

Laun. But, I pray you ergo, old man; ergo, I beseech
you,
talk

young

malter Launcelot ?
Gob. Of Launcelot, an't please your mastership

Laun. Ergo, master Launcelot; talk not of masterLauncelot, father, for the young gentleman (according, to fates and destinies, and such odd sayings, the fifters three, and such branches of learning) is, indeed, deceased ; or, as you would fay, in plain terms, gone to heav'n.

Geb. Marry, God forbid ) the boy was the very staff of my age, my very prop.

Laun. Do I look like a cudgel, or a hovel.poft, a staff or a prop do you know me, father?

Gob. Alack the day, I know you not, young gentle. man; but, I pray you, tell me, is my boy, God rellt his soul, alive or dead ?

Laun. Do you not know me, father?
Gob. Alack, Sir, I am fand-blind, I know you not.

Laun. Nay, indeed, if you had your eyes, you might fail of the knowing me : it is a wise father that knows his own child. Well, old man, I will tell you news of your fonį give me your blefling, truth will come to

highest

you of

light; murder cannot be hid long, a man's fon may ; but, in the end, truth will out.

Gob. Pray you, Sir, stand up; I am sure, you are not Launcelot my boy.

Laun. Pray you, let's have no more fooling about it, but give me your blessing : I am Launcelot, your boy, that was, your son that is, your child that shall be.

Gob. I cannot think, you are my son.

Laun. I know not, what I shall think of that: but I am Launcelot the Jew's man, and, I am sure, Margery your wife is my mother.

Gob. Her name is Margery, indeed. I'll be sworn, if thou be Launcelot, thou art my own filolh and blood : lord worship'd might he be! what a beard haft thou got! thou hast got more hair on thy chin, than Dobbin

my Thill-horse has on his tail. Laun. It should seem then, that Dobbin's tail grows backward;

I am sure, he had more hair on his tail, than I have on my face, when I last saw him.

Gob. Lord, how art thou chang'd! how doft thou and thy master agree? I have brought him a present ; how agree you now?

Laun. Well, well ; but for mine own part, as I have set up my reft to run away, so I will not rest 'till I have run fome ground. My master's a very few : give him a present! give him a halter : I am familh'd in his fervice. You may tell every finger I have with my ribs. Father, I am glad you are come ; give me your prefent to one master Bassanio, who, indeed, gives rare new liveries ; if I serve him not, I will run as far as. God has any ground. O rare fortune, here comes the man ; to him, father, for I am a Jew, if I serve the Jew any longer.

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Enter Baffanio with Leonardo, and a follower ori

two more.

Bal. You may do fo; but let it be so hafted, that supper be ready at the farthest by five of the clock : fee these. letters deliver'd, put the liveries to making, and desire Gratiano to come anon to my lodging.

letters

Laun. To him, father.
Gob. God bless your worship!
Bal. Gramercy, would'it thou aught with me?
Gob. Here's my son, Sir, a poor boy,

Laun. Not a poor boy, Sir, but the rich Jew's man, that would, Sir, as my father shall fpecifie,

Gob. He hath a great infection, Sir, as one would fay, to serve.

Laun. Indeed, the short and the long is, I serve the Fow, and have a desire, as my father shall specifie,

Gob. His master and he, saving your worship’s reverence, are scarce catercousins.

Laun. To be brief, the very truth is, that the Jew, having done me wrong, doth cause me, as my father, being I hope an old man, shall frutifie unto you,

Gob. I have here a dish of doves, that I would be tow - upon your worship ; and my fuit is

Laun. In very brief, the suit is impertinent to myself, as your worship shall know by this honest old man ; and though I say it, though old man, yet poor man my father.

Bal. One speak for both, what would you? Laun. Serve you, Sir. Gob. This is the very defect of the matter, Sir. Bal. I know thee well, thou hast obtain'd thy suit ; Sbylock, thy master, spoke with me this day, And hath preferr'd thee; if it be preferment To leave a rich Jew's service, to become The follower of fo poor a gentleman.

Laun. The old proverb is very well parted between my master Shylock and you, Sir ; you have the grace of God, Sir, and he hath enough.

Bal. Thou speak’ft it well; go, father, with thy fon :
Take leave of thy old master, and enquire
My lodging out í give him a livery,
More guarded than his fellows: see it done.

Laun. Father, in ; I cannot get a service, no? I have ne'er a tongue in my head well, if any man in Italy

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