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6. Sand-blind having a defect of sight, causing the appearance of small particles flying before the eyes. High-gravel-blind " is an effort


at wit.

conclusions; another Gobboism. "To try conclusions" means to make experiments.

7. Confusions

8. Marry a corruption of Mary; originally a mode of swearing by

the Virgin, but here a mere expletive.

9. Sonties

saints, of which it is probably a corruption.

10. Raise the waters = raise a storm or commotion.

11. Master was a title of respect that meant something in Shakespeare's day; hence Gobbo scruples to bestow it upon his son.

What a' will what he will.



13. Ergo


14. An't An it; that is, if it.

15. Father. As young people often used this term of address in speaking to old men, Gobbo did not recognize his son.

16. Hovel-post = a post to support a hovel or shed.

17. Stand up. - Launcelot had been kneeling, and, according to an old tradition, with his back to his father, who mistook the hair of his head for a beard.

thill-horse, the horse that goes between the thills or

18. Fill-horse = shafts.

19. Set up my rest = made up my mind. "A metaphor taken from a game, where the highest stake the parties were disposed to venture was called the rest."

20. Give me. - The me is a dative of indirect personal reference, called in Latin the dativus ethicus.

21. Gramercy = great thanks. A corruption of the French grand merci. 22. Infection affection or inclination; another Gobboism.

23. Cater-cousins = an expression of difficult explanation. Commonly regarded as a corruption of the French quatre-cousins, fourth cousins. 24. Frutify certify, the word aimed at.

pertinent, as he means.

25. Impertinent

26. Defect



27. Preferr'd = recommended for promotion.

28. The old proverb: "The grace of God is gear enough."

29. Guarded = braided, trimmed.

30. Table = palm of the hand, on which Launcelot is gazing. As Hudson explains, this "table doth not only promise, but offer to swear upon a book, that I shall have good fortune."

31. Line of life = the line passing around the base of the thumb.

32. Edge of a feather-bed = = an absurd variation of "edge of the sword." 33. Liberal: free, reckless.


34. Skipping:


35. With my hat. Hats were worn at meals; but while grace was say.

ing, they were taken off and held over the eyes.

36. Civility = refinement. 37. Sad ostent


1. Exhibit =


patched dress.



inhibit, as he means.

1. Spoke as yet, etc.
2. An = if.

Break up


break open.


4. Provideth of provided with. The prepositions of, with, and by were often used interchangeably.


grave demeanor.


1. Bid forth invited out.
2. Reproach approach-

a Gobboism.

3. Black-Monday. "In the 34th of Edward III., the 13th of April, and the morrow after Easter-day, King Edward, with his host, lay before the city of Paris; which day was full of dark mist and hail, and so bitter cold, that many men died on their horses' backs with the cold. Wherefore unto this day it hath been called Black-Monday.” — STOWE, as quoted by Hudson. 4. Fife = fifer, probably. A writer in 1618 says: "A fifer is a wryneckt musician."


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bespoken torch-bearers for us.

5. Jacob's staff.-"By faith Jacob, when he was a dying, blessed both the sons of Joseph; and worshipped, leaning upon the top of his staff.” Heb. xi. 21.

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6. Of feasting for feasting.

7. Hagar's offspring = Gentiles.

8. Patch =


1. Out-dwells = out-stays.

2. Venus' pigeons.
3. Obliged

professional jester or fool; so called from his motley or


The chariot of Venus was drawn by doves. pledged, bound by contract.

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7. Who whom. Shakespeare often omits the inflection.

8. Exchange, that is, of apparel.

9. Good sooth in good truth.

10. Close secret.

11. Beshrew me curse me, used as a mild imprecation.
12. On't of it.




1. Who: which. In the Elizabethan age, who and which were not fully differentiated. Which was often used of persons, as who of things. "Our Father which art in heaven." Matt. vi. 9.

2. As blunt, that is, as the "dull lead.”

3. Rated by thy estimation
4. Disabling disparaging.

5. This shrine. Portia is compared to a saint's shrine, which pilgrims often made long journeys to kiss.

6. Hyrcanian deserts an extended wilderness region lying south of the Caspian Sea.

valued by thy reputation.

7. Ten times undervalued. This refers to silver, which in 1600 stood to gold in the proportion of ten to one in value.

8. Insculp'd upon graven on the outside. The angel was in relief, and represented St. Michael piercing the dragon. The value of the coin was about ten shillings.

9. Carrion Death a skull from which the flesh has disappeared.

10. Part



1. Passion passionate outcry.

2. Keep his day, that is, the day fixed for the payment of the borrowed

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II. Quicken his embraced heaviness

embraced or given up to.

12. Do we so = let us do so. This is an imperative, 1st person, plural.


1. Straight = straightway, at once.

2. Election


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3. Address'd me = prepared myself, made ready.

4. Fortune now, etc.

7. Jump with agree with.

8. Ruin refuse, rubbish.


Success now to my heart's hope!

These two prepositions were not yet fully differentiated. the house-martin.

9. To offend, and judge, etc.

ment on his own case.


That is, the offender cannot sit in judg


10. I wis I know. This is a blunder form for ywis, iwis, meaning certainly. "It is particularly to be noted," says Skeat, "that the commonest form in MSS. is iwis, in which the prefix (like most other prefixes) is frequently written apart from the rest of the word, and not unfrequently the i is represented by a capital letter so that it appears as I wis. Hence, by an extraordinary error, the I has often been mistaken for the 1st per. pron., and the verb wis, to know, has been thus created, and is given in many dictionaries!"'


11. You are sped = you are undone.

12. By the time. 13. Wroth

14. My lord is in jesting response to the servant's inquiry, "Where is my lady?"


enliven the sadness which he has

suffering, misery.

in proportion to the time.


15. Sensible regreets = tangible or substantial greetings.

16. Commends =

17. Yet up to this time.

18. Post = postman, courier.

19. Lord Love =



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1. The Goodwins

the Goodwin Sands, off the eastern coast of Kent.

2. Knapped ginger = snapped or broke-up ginger-a favorite condiment with old people.

3. Wings she flew withal: the clothes in which she eloped.

4. Complexion = natural disposition.

5. Match


6. Smug:

= spruce, trim, studiously neat.

7. Hindered me, etc. kept me from gaining half a million ducats.
8. Frankfort Frankfort-on-the-Maine, noted for its fairs.
9. In that in that one diamond.


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10. Turquoise = a mineral, brought from Persia, of a peculiar bluishgreen color, susceptible of a high polish, and much esteemed as a gem. It was formerly supposed to fade or brighten with the wearer's health, and to change with the decay of a lover's affection.

1. Forsworn= perjured.

2. Beshrew curse upon - used as a harmless imprecation.




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3. O'erlook'd me= bewitched, fascinated me.

4. Prove it so if it prove so.

retard, delay. From Fr. peser, to weigh.

5. Peize 6. Fear doubt; that is, whether I shall ever enjoy. 7. Swan-like end. - An allusion to the belief that swans sing just before they die.


8. Flourish. - The coronation of English sovereigns is announced by a flourish of trumpets. 9. Alcides: Hercules. He rescued Hesione, daughter of Laomedon, when she was exposed as a sacrifice to appease the wrath of Neptune; and this he did, not from love, but for the reward of two horses promised by her father.

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10. Dardanian wives Trojan women.

11. Approve = prove, justify.

12. His: = its.


13. Livers white as milk = an expression indicative of cowardice. Falstaff speaks of "the liver white and pale, which is the badge of pussillanimity and cowardice."


14. Excrement

15. Supposed fairness = fictitious beauty.

16. Guiled beguiling.

the beard. From Lat. excrescere, to grow out.

17. Indian beauty. — This has been regarded a troublesome expression. "Dowdy," "gypsy," "favor," "visage," "feature," have been suggested in place of beauty. The difficulty seems to be removed by placing the emphasis on Indian, and regarding it as used in a derogatory sense. An Indian beauty, after all, is not apt to be a very desirable person.

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