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Shy. I cannot find it; 'tis not in the bond.
Por. Come, merchant, have you any thing to say ?
Ant. But little; I am armed, and well prepared. -
Give me your hand, Bassanio; fare you well!
Grieve not that I am fallen to this for you!
For herein Fortune shows herself more kind
Than is her custom; it is still her use
To let the wretched man outlive his wealth,
To view with hollow eye, and wrinkled brow,
An age of poverty; from which lingering penance
Of such a misery doth she cut me off.
Commend me to your honorable wife ;
Tell her the process of Antonio's end;
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 not you that you shall lose your friend,
And he repents not that he pays your debt;
For, if the Jew do but cut deep enough,
I'll pay it instantly with all my heart.
Bass. 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 esteemed above thy life;
I would lose all, ay, sacrifice them all
Here to this monster, to deliver you.
- Nerissa. Your wife will give you little thanks for that,
If she were by, to hear you make the offer.
Gra. 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.
Por. 'Tis well you offer it behind her back; . The wish would make else an unquiet house.
Shy. These be the Christian husbands. I have a daughter: 'Would any of the stock of Barabbas Had been her husband, rather than a Christian! (Aside.) We trifle time; I pray thee, pursue sentence.
Por. A pound of that same merchant's fesh 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 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.
Gra. O upright judge !— Mark, Jew! -0 learned judge
Shy. Is that the law ?
Por. Thyself shall see the act; For, as thou urgest justice, be assured Thou shalt have justice, more than thou desirest. Gra. O learned judge ! — Mark, Jew! a learned judge.
Shy. I take this offer then ;- pay the bond thrice, And let the Christian go.
Bass. Here is the money.
Por. Soft !
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 flesh.
Shed thou no blood ; nor cut thou less nor more,
But just a pound of flesh; if thou takest more,
Or less, than just a pound, - be it but so much
As makes it light, or heavy, in the substance,
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
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.
Bass. I have it ready for thee; here it is.
Por. He hath refused it in the open court; .
He shall have merely justice, and his bond.
Gra. A Daniel, still say I! a second Daniel ! I thank thee, Jew, for teaching me that word.
Shy. Shall I not have barely my principal ?
Por. Thou shalt have nothing but the forfeiture, To be so taken at thy peril, Jew.
Shy. Why, then, I'll — I'll — why,
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 proved against an alien,
That, by direct or indirect attempts,
He seeks the life of any citizen,
The party, 'gainst the which he doth contrive,
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 incurred
The danger formerly by me rehearsed.
Down, therefore, and beg mercy of the duko.
Gra. Beg that thou mayst have leave to hang thyselt:
And yet, thy wealth being forfeit to the state,
Thou hast not left the value of a cord;
Therefore thou must be hanged at the state's charge.
Duke. That thou shalt see the difference of our spirit,
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.
Por. Ay, for the state ; not for Antonio.
Shy: 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,
When you do take the means whereby I live.
Por. What merey can you render him, Antonio?
Gra. A halter gratis ; nothing else, I hope.
Ant. 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, - to render it,
Upon his death, unto the gentleman
That lately stole his daughter.
Two things provided more, - that, for this favor,
He presently become a Christian ;
The other, that he do record a gift,
Here in the court, of all he dies possessed,
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 dost thou say?
Shy. I ain 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.
128. Juba and Syphax.
Juba. Syphax, I joy to meet thee thus alone;
I have observed of late thy looks are fallen,
O’ercast with gloomy cares and discontent.
Then tell me, Syphax, I conjure thee tell me,
What are the thoughts that knit thy brow in frowns,
And turn thine eye thus coldly on thy prince?
Sy. 'Tis not my talent to conceal my thoughts,
Or carry smiles and sunshine in my face,
When discontent sits heavy at my heart:
I have not yet so much the Roman in me.
Ju. Why dost thou cast out such ungenerous terms
Against the lords and sovereigns of the world ?
Dost thou not see mankind fall down before them
And own the force of their superior virtue ?
Is there a nation in the wilds of Afric,
Amidst our barren rocks and burning sands,
That does not tremble at the Roman name?
Sy. Gods! where's the worth that sets this people up
Above our own Numidia's tawny sons ?
Do they with tougher sinews bend the bow?
Or flies the javelin swifter to its mark,
Launched by the vigor of a Roman arm?
Who like our active African instructs
The fiery steed, and trains him to his hand ?
Or guides in troops the embattled elephant,
Laden with war? These, these are arts, my prince,
In which your Zama does not stoop to Rome.
Ju. These all are virtues of a meaner rank.
Perfections that are placed in bones and nerves
A Roman soul is bent on higher views :
To civilize the rude, unpolished world;
To lay it under the restraint of laws;
To make man mild, and sociable to man;