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Ant. Most heartily I do beseech the Court
To give the judgment.

Por. Why, then thus it is:
You must prépare your bofom for his knife.

Sby. O noble judge! O excellent young man!

Por. For the intent and purpose of the law
Hath full relation to the penalty,
Which here appeareth due upon the bond.

Sby. 'Tis very true. O wise and upright judge,
How much more elder art thou than thy looks!

Por. Therefore lay bare your bosom.

Shy. Ay, his breast
So says the bond, doth it not, noble judge?
Neareft his heart, those are the very words.

Por. It is so. Are there scales, to weigh the flesh?
Shy. I have them ready.

Pór. Have by some surgeon, Shylock on your charge, To stop his wounds, left he should bleed to death.

Shy. "Is it so nominated in the bond ?
Por. It is not so express’d; but what of that?
'Twere good, you do so much for charity.

Shy. I cannot find it; 'tis not in the bond.
Pór. Come, merchant, have you any thing to sa, ?

Ant. But little: I am arm’d, and well prepar’d.
Give me your hand, Basanio, fare you

well! Grieve not, that I am fall'n to this for you; For herein fortune shews her self more kind, Than is her custom. It is still her use, To let the wretched man out-live his wealth, To view with hollow eye, and wrinkled brow, An age of poverty : From which ling’ring penance Of such a misery doth the cut me off. Commend me to your honourable wife; Tell her the process of Anthonio's end; Say, how I lov'd you ; speak me fair in death: And when the tale is told, bid her be judge, Whether Basanio had not once a love. Repent not you, that


shall lose your friend; And he repents not, that he pays your debtį For if the Jew do cut but deep enough,


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I'll pay it instantly with all my heart.

Ball. Anthonio, I am married to a wife,
Which is as dear to me as life it self;
But life it felf, my wife, and all the world,
Are not with me esteem'd above thy life.
I would lose all; ay, sacrifice them all
Here to this devil, to deliver you.

Por. Your wife would give you little thanks for that,
If she were by to hear you make the offer.

Gra. I have a wife, whom, I proteft, I love; I would, she were in heaven, so the could Intreat some Pow'r to change this currish Jew.

Ner. 'Tis well, you offer it behind her back;
The wish would make else an unquiet house.

Shy. These be the christian husbands. I've a daughter;
Would, any of the stock of Barrabas
Had been her husband, rather than a christian! [Afide.
We trifle time; I pray thee, pursue sentence.

Por. A pound of that same merchant's flesh is thine,
The Court awards it, and the law doth give it.

Shy. Most rightful judge !
Por. And you must cut this flesh from off his breast';
The law allows it, and the Court awards it.

Shy. Most learned judge! a sentence: come, prepare.

Por. Tarry a little, there is something else.
This bond doth give thee here no jot of blood,
The words expresly are a pound of flesh.
Then take thy bond, take thou thy pound of flesh

But, in the cutting it, if thou doft shed
One drop of christian blood; thy lands and goods
Are; by the laws of Venice, confiscate
Unto the state of Venice.

Gra. O upright judge! mark, Jew, O learned judge !
Shy. Is that the law ?

Por. Thy self shalt see the Act :
For as thou urgest justice, be assurd,
Thou shalt have justice, more than thou desir'st.

Gra. O learned judge ! mark, Jew, a learned judge!

Shy. I take this offer then, pay the bond thrice, And let the christian go.


Bal. Here is the mony.

Por. The Jew shall have all justice; soft! no haste; He shall have nothing but the penalty.

Gra. O Jew! an upright judge, a learned judge !

Por. Therefore prepare thee to cut off the Aesh;
Shed thou no blood, nor cut thou less, nor more,
But just a pound of flesh: if thou tak'st more
Or less than a just pound, be’t but so much
As makes it light or heavy in the fubstance,
On the division of the twentieth part
Of one poor scruple; nay, if the scale turn
But in the estimation of a hair,
Thou dieft, and all thy goods are confiscate.

Gra. A second Daniel, a Daniel, Jew!
Now, infidel, I have thee on the hip.

Por. Why doth the Jew pause? take the forfeiture.
Shy. Give me my principal, and let me go.
Ball: I have it ready for thee; here it is.

Pôr. He hath refus'd it in the open Court;
He shall have meerly justice, and his bond.

Gra. A Daniel, ftill say I; a second Daniel ! I thank thee, Jew, for teaching me that word.

Shy. Shall I not barely have my principal ?

Por. Thou shalt have nothing but the forfeiture, To be so taken at thy peril, Jew.

Shy. Why then the devil give him good of it!
I'll stay no longer question.

Por. Tarry, Jew.
The law hath yet another hold on you:
It is enacted in the laws of Venice,
If it be proy'd against an alien,
That by direct, or indirect, attempts
He seek the life of any citizen,
The party, ’gainst the which he doth contrive,
Shall seize on half his goods; the other half
Comes to the privy Coffer of the state;
And the offender's life lies in the mercy
Of the Duke only, 'gainst all other voice :
In which predicament, I say, thou stand'it.
For it appears by manifest proceeding,


F 4

That indirectly, and directly too,
Thou haft contriv'd against the very life
Of the defendant; and thou hast incurr'd
The danger formerly by me rehears’d.
Down, therefore, and beg mercy of the Duke.
Gra. Beg, that thou may'st have leave to hang thy

And yet, thy wealth being forfeit to the state,
Thou hast not left the value of a cord;
Therefore, thou must be hang'd at the state's charge.
Duke. That thou may'st see the diffèrence of our

I pardon thee thy life before thou ask it:
For half thy wealth, it is Anthonio's;
The other half comes to the general state,
Which humbleness may drive unto a fine.

Por. Ay, for the state; not for Anthonio.

Shy. Nay, take my life and all: pardon not th You take iny house, when you do take the prop That doth sustain my house: you take my life, When you do take the means whereby I live.

Por. What mercy can you render him, Anthonio? Gra. A halter gratis ; nothing else, for God's sake. Ant. So please my lord the Ďuke, (29) and all the

Court, (29) So please my Lord the Duke,] The Terms, which Antonio prescribes to be comply'd with by the Jew, have been reckon d intricate and corrupt; and a different Regulation has been advis'd : But, if I am not mistaken, they are to be thus understood. The Few had forfeited his whole Substance ; one Moiety thereof to go to the State, and the other to the Defendant. Antonio proposes, that the State should be content with fining him only that Moiety, which was confiscated to them; that, as to the Other, which Antonio equally might claim to himself ; he only desires to hold the Benefit, paying Interest for it to the Jew during his Life: and, apon the Jew's Demise, to have it immediately vested in his Son and Daughter. Nor does Antonio propose any Thing mean and ungenerous in this ; he quits that Right and Property, which the Law gave him, in the yew's Substance; and (with Regard to his own great Loffes,) is content to stand only as a Borrower of it, upon the general Foot of paying Interest: Nor are the Son and Daughter robb'd in This; since, setting aside Antonio's Claim by the Jew's Forfeiture, their Pretensions could not take place, till the Jew's Death: and He takes care, their reversionary Right in it should be secur’d by the Jew's recording a Deed of Gift to that Purpose.


To quit the fine for one half of his goods,
I am content ; so he will let me have
The other half in use, to render it.
Upon his death unto the gentleman,
That lately stole his daughter.
Two things provided more, that for this favour
He presently become a christian;
The other, that he do record a Gift
Here in the Court, of all he dies possessid,
Unto his son Lorenzo and his daughter.

Duke. He shall do this, or else I do recant
The pardon that I late pronounced here.

Por. Art thou contented, Jew? what doft thou say?
Shy. I am content.
Por. Clerk, draw a Deed of gift.

Shy. I pray you, give me leave to go from hence;
I am not well; send the Deed after me,
And I will sign it.

Duke. Get thee gone, but do it.

Gra. In christ’ning thou shalt have two godfathers. Had I been judge, thou should'st have had ten more, (30) To bring thee to the gallows, not the font.

[Exit Shylock.

Duke. (30)

thou should'st have had ten more,] i. e. a Jury of Twelve Men, to condemn thee to be hang’d. So, in Measure for Meafure,

I not deny,
The Jury passing on the Pris'ner's Life,
May in the sworn twelve have a Thief or two

That Justice seizes on. The Scenes of these two Plays are respectively laid in Venice and Vienna; and yet ’tis observable, in Both the Poet alludes to the Custom of sentencing by Juries, as in England. This is not to be imputed to him as Ignorance : The Licence of the Stage has allow'd it, not only at home ; but likewise the Tragic and Comic Poets of Antiquity indulg'd themselves in transplanting their own Customs to other Nations. Æschylus, for Instance, in his Choephoræ, makes Ele&tra, who is in Argos, talk of the Customs us’d in Purifications, and prescrib'd by Law, as the Scho liaft observes, at Athens. Tšto meds To Top Asworois Go Epis

Adávnoi rónov. Sophocles, in his Laocoon, the Scenary of which is laid in Troy, talks of erecting Altars, and burning Incense before their Doors, as was practis'd on joyful Occasions at Athens : therein trans planting the Athenian Manners, as Harpocration has noted, to Tray. Me5


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