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Sola. Believe me, Sir, had I such venture forth,
The better part of my affections would
Be with my hopes abroad. I should be still
Plucking the grass, to know where fits the wind;
Peering in maps for ports, and peers, and roads ;
And every object, that might make me fear
Misfortune to my ventures, out of doubt,
Would make me fad.
Sal. My wind, cooling my broth,
Would blow me to an ague, when I thought
What harm a wind too great might do at sea.
I should not see the sandy hour-glass run,
But I ihould think of shallows and of flats;
And see my wealthy Andrew dock'd in fand,
Vailing her high top lower than her ribs,
To kiss her burial. Should I go to church,
And see the holy edifice of stone,
And not bethink me strait of dang’rous rocks?
Which, touching but my gentle vessel's fide,
Would scatter all the spices on the stream,
Enrobe the roaring waters with my filks ;
And in a word, but even now worth this,
And now worth nothing. Shall I have the thought
To think on this, and shall I lack the thought,
That such a thing, bechanc'd, would make me fad ?
But tell not me ;
· I know, Anthonio Is fad to think upon his merchandize. Anth. Believe me, no: I thank my
fortune for it, My ventures are not in one bottom trusted, Nor to one place ; nor is my whole estate Upon the fortune of this present year: Therefore, my
merchandize makes me not fad. Sola. Why then you are in love. Anth. 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." Now by two-headed Janus, Nature hath fram'd strange fellows in her time : Some that will evermore 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 Neftor swear, the jest be laughable.
Enter Bassanio, Lorenzo and Gratiano.
Sal. Here comes Bassanio, your most noble kinsman,
Gratiano and Lorenzo : fare
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 : I take it, your own business calls on you, And you embrace th' occafion to depart. Sal. Good morrow, my good lords. Baj. Good Signiors both, when shall we laugh ? say,
when ? You grow exceeding strange; must it be so?
Sal. We'll make our leisures to attend on yours.
Sola. My lord Baffanio, fince you've found Anthonies
We two will leave you ; but at dinner-time,
I pray you, have in mind where we must meet.
Bal. I will not fail you. [Exeunt Solar, and Sala,
Gra. You look not well, Signior Abonio;
You have too much respect upon the world :
They lose it, that do buy it with much care.
Believe me, you are marvellously chang'd.
Anth. I hold the world but as the world, Gratiano,
A stage, where every man must play his part,
And mine's a fad one.
Gra. Let me play the fool ;
With mirth, and laughter, let old wrinkles come ;
And let my liver rather heat with wine,
Than my heart cool with mortifying groans.
. Why should a man, whose blood is warm within,
Sit like his grandfire cut in Alabaster?
Sleep when he wakes, and creep into the jaundice
By being peevith? I tell thee what, Anthonio,
(I love thee, and it is my love that speaks :)
There are a sort of men, whose visages
Do cream and mantle like a standing pond ;
And do a wilful stillness entertain,
With purpose to be drest in an opinion
Of wisdom, gravity, profound conceit ;
As who should say, I am Sir Oracle,
And when I ope my lips, let no dog bark !
O my Anthonio, I do know of those,
That therefore only are reputed wise,
For saying nothing; who, I'm very sure,
If they should speak, would almost damn those ears, (1)
Which, hearing them, would call their brothers fools.
I'll tell thee more of this another time :
But fih not with this melancholy bait,
For this fool's gudgeon, this opinion.
Come, good Lorenzo ; fare ye well a while ;
I'll end my exhortation after dinner.
Lor. Well, we will leave you then 'till dinner-time.
I must be one of these fame dumb wise men ;
For Gratiano never lets me speak.
Gra. Well, keep me company but two years more, Thou shalt not know the sound of thine own tongue.
Anth. Fare well; I'll grow a talker for this gear.
Gra. Thanks, i'faith ; for filence is only commendable In a neats tongue dryd, and a maid not
[Exeunt Gra, and Loren. Anth. Is that any thing now?
Bal. Gratiano speaks an infinite deal of nothing, more than any man in all Venice: his reasons are as two grains of wheat hid in two bushels of chaff; you shall
- would almost damn those Ears,] Several Old Editions have it, dam, damme, and daunt. Some more correct Copies, damn. The Author's Meaning is this; That some People are thought wise, whilst they keep silence; who, when they open their mouths, are such stupid Praters, that their Hearers cannot help calling them Fools, and so incur the Judgment denounc'd in the Gospel
. The Allusion is to St. Maithew, Chap. v. ver. 22. And whosever ball say to his Brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the Council : but whosoever fall say, thou Fool, shall be in danger of Hell-fire.
seek all day ere you find them, and when you have them,
they are not worth the search.
Anth. Well ; tell me now, what lady is the fame,
To whom you swore a secret pilgrimage,
That you to day promis’d to tell me of ?
Baj. 'Tis not unknown to you, Anthonio,
How much I have disabled mine estate,
By Thewing something a more swelling port,
Than my faint means would grant continuance ;
Nor do I now make moan to be abridg'd
From such a noble rate; but my chief care
Is to come fairly off from the great debts,
Wherein my time, something too prodigal,
Hath left me gaged : to you, Anthonio,
I owe the most in mony, and in love ;
And from your love I have a warranty
T' unburthen all my plots and purposes,
How to get clear of all the debts I owe.
Anth. I pray you, good Basanio, let me know it ;
And if it stand, as you yourself ftill do,
Within the eye of honour; be assur'd,
My purse, my person, my extreamest means
Lye all unlock'd to your occasions.
Baf. In my school-days, when I had lost one shaft,
I lot his fellow of the self-fame flight
The self-fame way, with more advised watch,
To find the other forth; by ventring both,
I oft found both. I urge this child-hood proof,
Because what follows is pure innocence.
I owe you much, and, like a wilful youth,
That which I owe is loft ; but if you please
To shoot another arrow that self way
did shoot the first, I do not doubt,
As I will watch the aim, or to find both,
Or bring your latter hazard back again,
And thankfully reft debtor for the first.
Anth. You know me well ; and herein spend but time,
To wind about my love with circumftance ;
And, out of doubt, you do me now more wrong,
In making question of my uttermoft,
Than if you had made waste of all I have.
Then do but say to me, what I should do,
That in your knowledge may by me be done,
And I am preft unto it: therefore, speak.
Bal. In Belmont is a lady richly left,
And The is fair, and, fairer than that word,
Of wond'rous virtues ; sometime, from her eyes (2)
I did receive fair speechless messages ;
Her name is Portia, nothing undervalu'd
To Cato's daughter, Brutus' Portia :
Nor is the wide world ign'rant of her worth ;
For the four winds blow in from every coast
Renowned suitors; and her sunny locks
Hang on her temples like a golden Aleece ;
Which makes her seat of Belmont, Colchos' strond ;
And many Jafons come in quest of her.
O my Anthonio, had I but the means
To hold a rival place with one of them,
I have a mind presages me such thrift,
That I should questionless be fortunate.
Anth. Thou know'ft, that all my fortunes are at least Nor have I mony, nor commodity To raise a present fum ; therefore, go forth ; Try what my credit can in Venice do; That shall be rack'd even to the uttermost, To-furnish thee to Belmont, to fair Portia : Go, presently enquire, and so will I, Where mony is; and I no question make, To have it of my trust, or for my
sometimes from her Eyes.] So all the Editions ; but it certainly ought to be, sometime, (which differs much more in Signification, than seems at first View :) i. e. former. ly, some time ago, at a certain time: and it appears by the subTequent Scene, that Bassanio was at Belmont with the Marquis de Mountserrat, and saw Portia in her Father's life-time. And our Author, in several other Places, uses the Word in such Acceptation,