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PORTIA, a rich heiress.
Magnificoes of Venice, Officers of the Court of Justice, Gaoler, Servants to Portia, and other Attendants.
Venice. A street.
Enter ANTONIO, SALARINO, and SALANIO.
ANTONIO. In sooth,' I know not why I am so sad :
It wearies me; you say it wearies you;
But how I caught it, found it, or came by it,
And such a want-wit2 sadness makes of me
SALARINO. Your mind is tossing on the ocean;
That curtsy to them, do them reverence,
As they fly by them with their woven wings.
SALANIO. Believe me, sir, had I such venture forth,
SCENE: Partly at Venice, and partly at
The better part of my affections would
Be with my hopes abroad. I should be still 9
Peering in maps for ports and piers and roads;
To kiss her burial. Should I go to church
And not bethink me straight 13 of dangerous rocks,
Is sad to think upon his merchandise.
ANTONIO. Believe me, no: I thank my fortune for it,
SALARINO. Not in love neither? Then let us say you are sad, Because you are not merry: and 'twere as easy
For you to laugh and leap and say you are merry,
Because you are not sad. Now, by two-headed Janus,'
And laugh like parrots at a bag-piper,
And other of such vinegar aspect
That they'll not show their teeth in way of smile,
Enter BASSANIO, LORENZO, and GRATIANO.
SALANIO. Here comes Bassanio, your most noble kinsman, Gratiano and Lorenzo. Fare ye well:
We leave you now with better company.
SALARINO. I would have stay'd till I had made you merry, If worthier friends had not prevented 20 me.
ANTONIO. Your worth is very dear in my regard.
I take it, your own business calls on you
And you embrace the occasion to depart.
SALARINO. Good morrow, my good lords.
BASSANIO. Good signiors both, when shall we laugh? say, when? You grow exceeding strange : must it be so?
SALARINO. We'll make our leisures to attend on yours.
[Exeunt SALARINO and SALANIO. LORENZO. My Lord Bassanio, since you have found Antonio, We two will leave you: but at dinner-time,
I pray you, have in mind where we must meet.
BASSANIO. I will not fail you.
GRATIANO. You look not well, Signior Antonio;
You have too much respect upon
ANTONIO. I hold the world but as the world, Gratiano:
A stage where every man must play a part,
Let me play the fool: 23
Than my heart cool with mortifying groans.
Sleep when he wakes and creep into the jaundice
I love thee, and it is my love that speaks -
28 I am Sir Oracle,
As who should say
And when I ope my lips let no dog bark!"
That therefore only are reputed wise
For saying nothing, who, I am very sure,
If they should speak, would almost damn those ears
Which, hearing them, would call their brothers fools.29
I'll tell thee more of this another time:
But fish not, with this melancholy bait,
LORENZO. Well, we will leave you then till dinner-time: I must be one of these same dumb wise men,
For Gratiano never lets me speak.
GRATIANO. Well, keep me company but two years moe,31 Thou shalt not know the sound of thine own tongue.
ANTONIO. Farewell: I'll grow a talker for this gear.32
GRATIANO. Thanks, i' faith, for silence is only commendable In a neat's tongue dried. [Exeunt GRATIANO and LORENZO.
ANTONIO. Is that any thing now?
BASSANIO. Gratiano speaks an infinite deal of nothing, more than any man in all Venice. His reasons are as two grains of wheat hid in two bushels of chaff: you shall seek all day ere you find them, and when you have them, they are not worth the search.
ANTONIO. Well, tell me now what lady is the same
BASSANIO. 'Tis not unknown to you, Antonio,
From such a noble rate;
To unburden all my plots and purposes
ANTONIO. I pray you, good Bassanio, let me know it;
And if it stand, as you yourself still 37 do,
My purse, my person, my extremest means,
BASSANIO. In my school-days, when I had lost one shaft I shot his fellow of the self-same flight 39
The self-same way, with more advised 4° watch,
To find the other forth, and by adventuring both
I owe you much, and like a wilful 43 youth,
ANTONIO. You know me well, and herein spend but time
To wind about my love with circumstance;
And out of doubt you do me now more wrong
BASSANIO. In Belmont is a lady richly left;
Hang on her temples like a golden fleece;