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DUKE of Venice.
Stephano;} Servants to Portia.
Portia, an Heiress of great Quality and Fortune.
SCENE, partly at Venice; and partly at Bel
mont, the Seat of Portia upon the Continent.
MERCHANT of VENIC E.
ACT I. SCENE I.
A Street in Venice.
Enter Anthonio, Solarino, and Salanio.
N sooth, I know not why I am so sad:
What stuff 'tis made of, whereof it is
Sal. Your mind is tossing on the ocean ;
Or as it were the pageants of the Sea,
Sola: Believe me, Sir, had I such venture forth,
Sal. My wind, cooling my broth,
Anth. Believe me, no: I thank my fortune for it,
Antb. Fie, fie!
Sola. Not in love neither! then let's say, you're fad, Because you are not merry; and 'twere as easy For you to laugh and leap, and say, you're merry, Because you are not fad. “2 Now by two-headed Janus, “ Nature hath fram'd strange fellows in her time: " Some that will evermore 3 peep through their eyes, “ And laugh, like parrots, at a bag-piper ; " And others of such vinegar-aspect, “ That they'll not show * their teeth in way of smile, “ Though Nestor swear, the jest be laughable.”
Enter Baffanio, Lorenzo and Gratiano. Sal. Here comes Bafanić, your most noble kinsman, Gratiano and Lorenzo : fare ye well; We leave ye now with better company.
Sola. I would have staid 'till I had made you merry, If worthier friends had not prevented me.
Anth. Your worth is very dear in my regard :
Sal. Good morrow, my good lords.
Sal. We'll make our leisures to attend on yours.
Sola. My lord Bassanio, since you've found Anthonio, We two will leave you; but at dinner-time,
2-Now by two-beaded Janus,] Here Shakespear fhews his knowledge in the antique. By two-headed Janus is meant those antique bifrontine heads, which generally represent a young and fmiling face, together with an old and wrinkled one, being of Pan and Bacchus; of Saturn and Apollo, &c. These are not uncommon in collections of antiques ; and in the books of the antiquaries, as Montfaucon, Spanheim, &c.
3 - peep through their eyes,] This gives us a very picturesque image of the countenance in laughing, when the eyes appear half Thur. 4
-their teeth in way of smile, ] Because such are apt enough to thew their teeth in anger.