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Say how I loved you, speak me fair in death;
And, when the tale is told, bid her be judge
Whether Bassanio had not once a love.
Repent but you that you shall lose your friend,
And he repents not that he pays your debt;
For if the Jew do cut but deep enough,
I'll pay it presently with all my heart.48

47

BASSANIO. Antonio, I am married to a wife

Which is as dear to me as life itself;

But life itself, 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.

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

GRATIANO. I have a wife, whom, I protest, I love:

I would she were in heaven, so she could

Entreat some power to change this currish Jew.

NERISSA. 'Tis well you offer it behind her back;

The wish would make else an unquiet house.

SHYLOCK. [Aside] These be the Christian husbands.
daughter;

Would any of the stock of Barrabas

Had been her husband rather than a Christian

[Aloud] We trifle time: I pray thee, pursue sentence.

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

SHYLOCK. Most rightful judge!

PORTIA. And you must cut this flesh from off his breast:
The law allows it, and the court awards it.

SHYLOCK. Most learned judge! A sentence !
PORTIA. Tarry a little; there is something else.
This bond doth give thee here no jot of blood;
The words expressly are “a pound of flesh:"
Take then thy bond, take thou thy pound of flesh;
But, in the cutting it, if thou dost shed
One drop of Christian blood, thy lands and goods
Are, by the laws of Venice, confiscate

Unto the state of Venice.

GRATIANO.

I have a

Come, prepare!

O upright judge! Mark, Jew: O learned judge!

SHYLOCK.

Is that the law?

PORTIA.

Thyself shalt see the act:

For, as thou urgest justice, be assured

Thou shalt have justice, more than thou desirest.

GRATIANO. O learned judge! Mark, Jew: a learned judge!
SHYLOCK. I take this offer, then; pay the bond thrice

And let the Christian go.

BASSANIO.

PORTIA. Soft!

Here is the money.

The Jew shall have all justice; soft! no haste:

He shall have nothing but the penalty.

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

PORTIA. Therefore prepare thee to cut off the flesh.

Shed thou no blood, nor cut thou less nor more
But just a pound of flesh: if thou cut'st more
Or less than a just 49 pound, be it but so much
As makes it light or heavy in the substance,50
Or the division of the twentieth part

Of one poor scruple, nay, if the scale do turn
But in the estimation of a hair,

Thou diest and all thy goods are confiscate.

GRATIANO. A second Daniel, a Daniel, Jew!

Now, infidel, I have you on the hip.

PORTIA. Why doth the Jew pause? take thy forfeiture.
SHYLOCK. Give me my principal, and let me go.
BASSANIO. I have it ready for thee; here it is.
PORTIA. He hath refused it in the open court:

He shall have merely justice and his bond.

GRATIANO. A Daniel, still say I, a second Daniel! I thank thee, Jew, for teaching me that word.

SHYLOCK. Shall I not have barely my principal?

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

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

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He seek the life of any citizen,

The party 'gainst the which he doth contrive 51
Shall seize one 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’st;
For it appears, by manifest proceeding,
That indirectly and directly too

Thou hast contrived against the very life
Of the defendant; and thou hast incurr'd
The danger formerly 52 by me rehears'd.
Down therefore and beg mercy of the duke.

GRATIANO. Beg that thou mayst have leave to hang thyself: 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 shalt see the difference of our spirits,

I pardon thee thy life before thou ask it:

For half thy wealth, it is Antonio's ;
The other half comes to the general state,
Which humbleness may drive unto a fine.53

PORTIA. Ay, for the state, not for Antonio.

SHYLOCK. Nay, take my life and all; pardon not that:
You take my house when you do take the prop
That doth sustain my house; you take my life
do take the means whereby I live.

When you

PORTIA. What mercy can you render him, Antonio? GRATIANO. A halter gratis; nothing else, for God's sake. ANTONIO. So please my lord the duke and all the court To quit the fine for one half of his goods,

I am content; so he will let me have

The other half in use,54 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 possess'd,

Unto his son Lorenzo and his daughter.

DUKE. He shall do this, or else I do recant

The pardon that I late pronounced here.

PORTIA. Art thou contented, Jew? what dost thou say?

SHYLOCK. I am content.

PORTIA.

Clerk, draw a deed of gift.

SHYLOCK. I pray you, give me leave to go from hence;

I am not well: send the deed after me,

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GRATIANO. In christening shalt thou have two godfathers;
Had I been judge, thou shouldst have had ten more, 55
To bring thee to the gallows, not the font.

[Exit SHYLOCK.

DUKE. Sir, I entreat you home with me to dinner.
PORTIA. I humbly do desire your grace of pardon:

I must away this night toward Padua,
And it is meet I presently set forth.

DUKE. I am sorry that your leisure serves you not.56
Antonio, gratify 57 this gentleman,

For, in my mind, you are much bound to him.

BASSANIO.

[Exeunt DUKE and his train.

Most worthy gentleman, I and my friend

Have by your wisdom been this day acquitted

Of grievous penalties; in lieu whereof,

Three thousand ducats, due unto the Jew,

We freely cope 58 your courteous pains withal.59

ANTONIO. And stand indebted, over and above,

In love and service to you evermore.

PORTIA. He is well paid that is well satisfied; And I, delivering you, am satisfied

60

And therein do account myself well paid:
My mind was never yet more mercenary.°
I pray you, know me when we meet again:
I wish you well, and so I take my leave.

BASSANIO. Dear sir, of force 61 I must attempt'

Take some remembrance of us, as a tribute
Not as a fee: grant me two things, I pray you,

Not to deny me, and to pardon me.

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PORTIA. You press me far, and therefore I will yield.

[To ANTONIO] Give me your gloves, I'll wear them for your sake; [To BASSANIO] And, for your love, I'll take this ring from you:

Do not draw back your hand; I'll take no more;
And you in love shall not deny me this.

BASSANIO. This ring, good sir, alas, it is a trifle!
I will not shame myself to give you this.

PORTIA. I will have nothing else but only this;

And now methinks I have a mind to it.

BASSANIO. There's more depends on this than on the value. The dearest ring in Venice will I give you,

And find it out by proclamation:

Only for this, I pray you, pardon me.

PORTIA. I see, sir, you are liberal in offers: You taught me first to beg; and now methinks

You teach me how a beggar should be answer`d.

BASSANIO. Good sir, this ring was given me by my wife;

And when she put it on, she made me vow

That I should neither sell nor give nor lose it.

PORTIA. That 'scuse 63 serves many men to save their gifts.

An if 64 your wife be not a mad-woman,

And know how well I have deserved the ring,
She would not hold out enemy for ever,

For giving it to me. Well, peace be with you!

[Exeunt PORTIA and NERISSA.

ANTONIO. My Lord Bassanio, let him have the ring:

Let his deservings and my love withal

Be valued 'gainst your wife's commandment.

BASSANIO. Go, Gratiano, run and overtake him; Give him the ring, and bring him, if thou canst,

Unto Antonio's house: away! make haste.

Come, you and I will thither presently;

And in the morning early will we both

[Exit GRATIANO.

[Exeunt.

SCENE II.

The same. A street.

Fly toward Belmont: come, Antonio.

Enter PORTIA and NERISSA.

PORTIA. Inquire the Jew's house out, give him this deed

And let him sign it: we'll away to-night

And be a day before our husbands home:

This deed will be well welcome to Lorenzo.

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