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SCENE II. Belmont.
Enter Bassanio, Portia, Gratiano, and Attendant sa
: The Caskets are set out.
Por. I pray you tarry, pause a Day or two
Before you hazard; for in chusing wrong
I lose your Company; therefore forbear a while, 's
There's something tells me, but it is not Love,
I would not lose you, and you know your self,
Hate counsels not in such a Quality. .
But lest you should not understand me well,
And yet a Maiden hath no Tongue but Thought,
I would decain you here some Month or two,
Before you venture for me.' I could teach you
How to chuse right, but then I am försworn;
So will I never be, so may you miss me;
But if you do, you'll make me wish a Sin,
That I had been forsworn. Beshrew your Eyes,
They have o'er-look'd me, and divided me;
One half of me is yours, the other half
Mine own, I would say : But first mine, then yours;
And so all yours. O'these naughty Times
Puts Bars between the Owners and their Rights:
And so tho' yours, not yours, prove it so,
Let Fortune go to Hell for it, not I.
I speak too long, but 'tis to poize the Time,
To eche it, and draw it out in Length, ;';.
To stay you from Election.
Bal. Let me chuse; ..... .
For as I am I live upon the Rack.
Por. Upon the Rack, Bassanio, then confess
What Treason there is mingled with your Love.
Bal. None but that ugly Treason of Miftruft,
Which makes me fear the enjoying of my Love: ¢
There may as well be Amity and Life,
'Tween Snow and Fire, as Treason and my Love.
Por. Ay, but I fear you speak upon the Rack,
Where Men enforced do speak any thing.
Ball. Promise me Life, and I'll confess the Truth.
Por. Well then, confess and live,
Bal. Confess and Love,
Had been the very Sum of my Confession.
O happy Torment, when my Torturer
Doth teach me Answers for Deliverance:
But let me to my Fortune and the Caskets.
Por. Away then, I am lockt in one of them;
If you do love me, you will find me out.
Nerilla, and the rest, stand all aloof,
Let Musick sound while he doth make his Choice;
Then if he lose, he makes a Swan-like end,
Fading in Musick. That the Comparison
May stand more proper, my Eye Thall be the Stream
And watry Death-bed for him: He máy win,
And what is Musick then? Then Musick'is
Even as the Flourish, when true Subjects bow
To a new crowned Monarch: Such it is,
As are those dulcet Sounds in break of Day,
That creep into the dreaming Bridegroom's Ear,
And summon him to Marriage. Now he goes
With no lefs Presence, but with much more Love
Than young Alcides, when he did redeem
The Virgin-tribute, paid by howling Troy
To the Sea-monster: I stand for Sacrifice;
The rest aloof are the Dardanian Wives,
With bleared Visages come forth to view
The Issue of th' Exploit. Go Hercules,
Live thou, I live, with much, much more Dismay
I view the Fight, than thou that mak'st the Fray.
[Musick within. A Song whilft Bassanio comments on the Caskets to himself.
Tell me where is Fancy bred,
Or in the Heart, or in the Head:
How begot, how nourished?
It is engendred in the Eyes,
With Gazing fed, and Fancy dies
In the Cradle where it lyes:
Let us all ring Fancy's Knell. :
I'll begin it.
Ding, dong, Bell.
All. Ding, dong, Bell.
Ball. So may the outward Shows be least themselves.
The World is still deceiv'd with Ornament.
In Law what Plea fo tainted and corrupt,
But being season'd with a gracious Voice,
Obscures the Show of Evil? In Religion
What damned Error, but some sober Brow
Will bless it, and approve it with a Text,
Hiding the Grossness with fair Ornament?
There is no Vice so fimple, but affumes
Some Mark of Virtue on his outward Parts;
How many Cowards, whose Hearts are all as false
As Stairs of Sand, wear yet upon their Chins
The Beards of Hercules and frowning Mars?
Who inward searcht, have Livers white as Milk,
And these assume but Valour's Excrement,
To render them redoubted. Look on Beauty,
And you shall see 'tis purchas'd by the Weight,
Which therein works a Miracle in Nature,
Making them lightest that wear most of it:
So are those crisped snaky golden Locks
Which makes such wanton Gambols with the Wind
Upon supposed Fairness, often known
To be the dowry of a second Head;
The Scull that bred them in the Sepulcher.
Thus Ornament is but the gilded shore
To a most dangerous Sea ; the beauteous Scarf
Veiling an Indian Beauty; in a Word,
The seeming Truth which cunning Times put on
To entrap the Wiseft. Therefore, thou gaudy Gold,
Hard Food for Midas, I will none of thee,
Nor none of thee, thou pale and common Drudge :
'Tween Man and Man; but thou, thou meager Lead,
Which rather threatnest than dost promise ought;
Thy Paleness moves me more than Eloquence,
And here chuse I, Joy be the Consequence.
Por. How all the other Paffions fleet to Air,
As doubtful Thoughts, and rash embrac'd Despair,
And shuddring Fear, and green-ey'd Jealousie.
O Love be moderate, allay thy Extalie;
In measure rain thy Joy, scant this Excess,
I feel too much thy Blessing, make it less,
For fear I surfeit.... [Opening the leaden Casket.
Bal. What find I here?
Fair Portia's Counterfeit. What Demy-God
Hath come so near Creation? Move these Eyes?
Or whether riding on the Balls of mine :
Seem they in Motion? Here are sever'd Lips
Parted with Sugar Breath; so sweet a Bar
Should sunder such sweet Friends: Here in her Hairs
The Painter plays the Spider, and hath woven
A golden Mesh t'intrap the Hearts of Men
Faster than Gnats in Cobwebs: But her Eyes,
How could he see to do them? Having made one,
Methinks it should have Power to steal both his, .
And leave it self unfinish'd: Yet look how far
The Substance of my Praise doth wrong this Shadow
In underprising it ; so far this Shadow
Doth limp behind the Substance. Here's the Scrowl,
The Continent and Summary of my Fortune.
You that chufe not by the View,
Chance as fair, and chufe as true:
Since this Fortune falls to you,
Be content, and seek no new.
If you be well pleased with this,
And hold your Fortune for your Bliss,
Turn you where your Lady is,
And claim her with a loving Kiss.
A gentle Scrowl; Fair Lady, by your Leave, [Kissing her.
I come by Note to give, and to receive.
Like one of two contending in a Prize,
That thinks he hath done well in Peoples Eyes;.
Hearing Applause and universal Shout,
Giddy in Spirit, still gazing in a Doubt,
Whether those Peals of Praise be his or no;
So thrice fair Lady stand I even so,
As doubtful whether what I see be true,
Until confirm’d, fign'd, ratify'd by you..
Por. You see, my Lord Bassanio, where I stand,
Such as I am; tho for my self alone,
I would not be ambitious in my Wish,
To wish my self much better; yet for you,
I would be trebled twenty Times my self,"
A thousand times more fair, ten thousand Times
More rich, chat to stand high in your Account,
I might in Virtues, Beauties, Livings, Friends,
Exceed Account; but the full Sum of me
Is Sum.of nothing; which to term in gross,
Is an unlesson'd Girl, unschool'd, unpractis'd :
Happy in this, she is not yet so old .
But she may learn; happier then in this,
She is not bred fo dull but she can learn;
Happiest of all is, that her gentle Spirit
Commits it self to yours to be directed, in
As from her Lord, her Governor, her King,
My self, and what is mine, to you and yours
Is now converted. But now I was the Lady
of this fair Mansion, Mistress of my Servants,
Queen o'er my self, and even now; but now
This House, these Servants, and this fame my self
Are yours my Lord, I give them with this Ring,
Which when you part from, lose, or give away,
Let it presage the Ruin of your Love,
And be my Vantage to exclaim on you.
Bal. Madam, you have bereft-me of all Words,
Only my Blood speaks to you in my Veins,
And there is such Confusion in my Powers,
As after some Oration fairly spoke
By a beloved Prince, there doch appear
Among the buzzing pleased Multitude,
Where every something being blent together,
Turns to a wild of nothing, fave of Joy
Exprest, and not exprest; but when this Ring
Parts from this Finger, then parts Life from hence;
O then be bold to say, Bassanio's dead.
Ner. My Lord and Lady, it is now our time,
That have ftood by, and seen our Wishes prosper,
To cry Good Joy, good foy, my Lord and Lady.
Gra. My Lord Bassanio, and my gentle Lady,
I wish you all the Joy that you can wish;
For I am sure you can wish none from me:
And when your Honours mean to solemnize..