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Than is thy strange apparent cruelty.
And, where thou now exact'st the penalty,
Which is a pound of this poor merchant's flesh,
Thou wilt not only lose the forfeiture,
But, touch'd with human gentleness and love,
Forgive a moiety of the principal;
Glancing an eye of pity on his losses,
That have of late so hudled on his back,
Enough to press a royal merchant down;
And pluck commiseration of his state
From braffy bosoms, and rough hearts of Aint;
From stubborn Turks and Tartars, never train'd
To offices of tender courtesie.
We all expect a gentle answer, Jew.

Shy. I have poffefs'd your Grace of what I purpose.
And by our holy Sabbath have I sworn,
To have the due and forfeit of


If you deny it, let the danger light
Upon your charter, and your city's freedom !
You'll ask me, why I rather chuse to have
A weight of carrion Aesh, than to receive
Three thousand ducats ? l'll not answer that.
But say, it is my humour; is it answer'd ?
What if my house be troubled with a rat,
And I be pleas’d to give ten thousand ducats
To have it baned? what, are you answer'd yet ?
Some men there are, love not a gaping pig ;
Some, that are mad, if they behold a cat ;
And others, when the bag pipe fings i' th' nose,
Cannot contain their urine for affection. (15)


(15) Cannot contain their Vrine for Affection.

Mafterless passion fways it to the Mood of what it likes, or loaths. ] Materless Passion was first Mr. Powe's Reading, (on what Authority, I am at a Loss 10 know;) which Mr. Fope has since copied. And tho' i haveror difturb'd the Text, yet, I must observe, I don't know what Word there is to which this Relative [it, in the ad Line) is to be referr'd. The ingenious Dr. Thirlby, therefore, would thus adjust the Passage. Vol. II.


Mafterless paffion fways it to the mood
Of what it likes, or loaths. Now, for your answer :
As there is no firm reason to be render'd,
Why he cannot abide a gaping pig ;
Why he, a harmless necessary cat ;
Why he, a woollen bag-pipe ; but of force
Muit yield to such inevitable fame,
As to offend, himself being offended;
So can I give no reason, nor I will not,
More than a lodg'd hate and a certain loathing
I bear Anthonio, that I follow thus
A losing suit against him. Are you answer'd?

Bal. This is no answer, thou unfeeling man,
T'excuse the current of thy cruelty.
Shy. I am not bound to please thee with my an-

swer. Bal. Do all men kill the thing they do not love? Shy. Hates any man the thing he would not kill ? Bas. Ev'ry offence is not a hate at first. Shy. What, would'ft thou have a serpent fting thee

twice? Ant. I pray you, think, you question with a few. You may as well go stand upon the beach, And bid the main food 'bate his usual height. You may as well use question with the wolf, Why he hath made the ewe bleat for the lamb. You may as well forbid the mountain pines

their high tops, and to make no noise,

To wag

Cannot contain their Vrine; for Affection,

* Master of Passion, Sways it &c. * Or, Mistress. And then it is govern'd of Passion : and the 2 old Quarto's and Folio's read. Masters of Passion, &c.

It may be obje&ted, that Affection and Passion are Synonomous Terms, and mean the same Thing. I agree, they do at this time. But I observe, the Writers of our Author's Age made a sort of Diftin&tion: considering the one as the cause

, the Other as the Effect. And then, in this place, Affe&tion will stand for that Sympathy or Antipathy of Soul, by which we are provok'd to thew a Liking or Disgust in the Working of our Passions,


When they are fretted with the gusts of heav’n.
You may as well do any thing moit hard,
As seek to soften that, (than which what's harder!)
His Jewis heart. Therefore, I do beseech you,
Make no more offers, use no farther means;
But with all brief and plain conveniency
Let me have judgment, and the Jew his will.

Bal. For thy three thousand ducats here is fix.

Shy. If ev'ry ducat in fix thousand ducats
Were in fix parts, and ev'ry part a ducat,
I would not draw them, I would have

my bond.
Duke. How shalt thou hope for mercy, rend'ring

none ?
Shy. What judgment shall I dread, doing no wrong?
You have among you many a purchas'd slave,
Which, like your asses, and your dogs, and mules,
You use in abject and in slavish part,
Because you bought them. Shall I say to you,
Let them be free, marry them to your heirs ?
Why sweat they under burdens ? let their beds
Be made as soft as yours, and let their palates
Be feason'd with such viands; you will answer,
The slaves are ours.

So do I answer you:
The pound of flesh, which I demand of him,
Is dearly bought, 'tis mine, and I will have it.
If you deny me, fie upon your law !
There is no force in the decrees of Venice:
I stand for judgment; answer; shall I have it?

Duke. Upon my pow'r I may dismiss this Court,
Unless Bellario, a learned Doctor,
Whom I have sent for to determine this,
Come here to day.

Sal. My lord, here stays, without,
A messenger with letters from the Doctor,
New come from Padua.

Duke. Bring us the letters, call the messenger.
Baj. Good cheer, Anthonio ; what, man, courage

yet :
The few shall have my flesh, blood, bones, and all,
Ere thou shalt lose for me one drop of blood.



Ant. I am a tainted weather of the flock, Meetest for death : the weakest kind of fruit Drops earliest to the ground, and so let me. You cannot better be employ'd, Balanio, Than to live still, and write mine epitaph.

Enter Nerissa, dress'd like a Lawyer's Clerk. Duke. Came you from Padua, from Bellario? (16) Ner. From both, my lord : Bellario greets your

Bal. Why doft thou whet thy knife so earnestly?
Shy. To cut the forfeit from that bankrupt there.
Gre. Not on thy foale, but on thy soul, harsh

Few, (17)
Thou mak'st thy knife keen; for no metal can,
No, not the hangman's ax, bear half the keenness
Of thy sharp envy. Can no prayers pierce thee ?

Shy. No, none that thou hast wit enough to make.

Gra. O be thou damn'd, inexorable dog,
And for thy life let justice be accus'd !
Thou almost mak’t me waver in my faith,
To hold opinion with Pythagoras,
That souls of animals infuse themselves
Into the trunks of men. Thy currilh spirit
Govern'd a wolf, who, hang'd for human slaughter,

(16) From both: my Lord Bellario greets your Grace.) Thus the two old Folio's, and Mr. Pope in his Quarto, had inaccu. racely pointed this Passage, by which a Doctor of Laws was at once rais'd to the Dignity of the Peerage.

(17) Not on thy Soale, but on thy Soul, harsh Jew.] I was obliged, from the Authority of the old Folio's, to restore this Conceit, and Jingle-upon two words alike in Sound, but differing in Sense. Gratiano thus rates the Jew; “ Tho'chou ti thinkest, that thou art whetting thy Knife on the Soale of es thy Shoe, yet it is upon thy Soul, thy immortal Part, that es thou do'st it, thou inexorable Man!” There is no room to doubt, but this was our Author's Antithesis; as it is so usual with him to play on Words in this manner: and That from the Mouth of his most serious Characters,


Ev'n from the gallows did his fell foul fleet,
And, whilft thou lay'st in thy unhallow'd dam,
Infus'd it self in thee : for thy desires
Are wolfish, bloody, starv'd, and ravenous.

Sby. 'Till thou canst rail the seal from off my bond,
Thou but offendit thy lungs to speak so loud,
Repair thy wit, good youth, or it will fall
To cureless ruin. I stand here for law.

Duke. This letter from Bellario doth commend
A young and learned doctor to our Court.
Where is he?

Ner. He attendeth here hard by
To know your answer, whether you'll admit him.

Duke. With all my heart. Some three or four of you
Go give him courteous conduct to this place :
Mean time, the Court fhall hear Bellario's letter.

OUR Grace fall understand, that, at the re

ceipt of your letter, I am very fick: but at the inftant that your messenger came, in loving visitation was with me a young Doctor of Rome, his Name is Balthafar: I acquainted him with the cause in controversie between the Jew and Anthonio the merchant. We turn'd o'er many books together: he is furnished with my opinion, which, bettered with his own learn. ing, (the greatness whereof I cannot enough commend,) comes with him at my importunity, to fill up your Grace's request in my Aead. I beseech you, let his lask of years be no impediment, to let him lack a reverend estimation : For I never knew fo young a body with so old a head. I leave him to your gracious, accepiance, whose trial shall better publish his com. mendation.

Enter Portia, dress'd like a Doctor of Laws.
Duke. You hear the learn'd Bellario, what he writes,
And here, I take it, is the Doctor come:
Give me your hand. Came you from old Bellario?

Por. I did, my lord.
Duke. You're welcome : take your place...



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