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Do you desire ?—Rest you fair, good signior; ;
[TO ANTONIO. Your worship was the last man in our mouths.
Ant. Shylock, albeit I neither lend nor borrow, By taking, nor by giving of excess, Yet, to supply the ripe wants of my friend, I'll break a custom :-Is he yet possess'd“, How much
Ay, ay, three thousand ducats. Ant. And for three months.
Shy. I had forgot,-three months, you told me so. Well then, your bond; and, let me see, -But
Methought, you said, you neither lend, nor borrow,
I do never use it.
Ant. And what of him? did he take interest?
3 Wants come to the height, which admit no longer delay. 4 Informed.
5 Young lambs just dropt, or ean'd. This word is usually spelt yean but the Saxon etymology demands ean.
It is applied particularly to ewes.
6 i. e, of nature.
He stuck them up before the fulsome? ewes ;
Ant. This was a venture, sir, that Jacob sery'd for;
Shy. I cannot tell; I make it breed as fast:
Mark you this, Bassanio,
Shy. Three thousand ducats,— 'tis a good round
Three months from twelve, then let me see the rate.
7. Fulsome,' says Mr. Douce, has, doubtless, the same signification with the preceding epithet rank.' It is true that rank has sometimes the interpretation affixed to it of rammish in old Dictionaries, but there is also another meaning of the word which may be found in Baret's Alvearie, 1573, viz. Fruitefull, ranck, battle, Lat. fertilis. This sense would also, I think, better accord with fulsome, if it could be shown to be a synonyme. It is quite evident that Steevens's interpretation is not supported by his quotations, most of which have one of the old senses of the word foul or foulsome. Mr. Boswell's interpretation, pregnant, is inadmissible; and the quotation from Golding's Ovid is much in favour of my suggestion. The fulsome ewes may therefore only mean the fruitful ewes : • But what have your poor sheepe misdone, a cattel meeke
and meeld, Created for to maintaine man, whose fulsome dugs do yeeld Sweete nectar.' 8 Falsehood here means knavery, treachery, as truth is sometimes used for honesty.
Ant. Well, Shylock, shall we be beholden to you?
Shy. Signior Antonio, many a time and oft,
usances 9 :
Ant. I am as like to call thee so again,
enemy; 9 Interest.
10 i.e. interest, money bred from the principal. Meres says, • Usurie and encrease of gold and silver is unlawful, because against nature ; nature hath made them sterill and barren, usurie makes them procreative. The honour of starting this conceit belongs to Aristotle. See De Republ. l. 1.
Who, if he break, thou may’st with better face
Why, look you, how you storm! I would be friends with you, and have
love, Forget the shames that you have staind me with, Supply your present wants, and take no doit Of usance for
my monies, and you'll not hear me: This is kind I offer. Ant.
This were kindness.
you repay me not on such a day,
Ant. Content, in faith ; I'll seal to such a bond, And
say, there is much kindness in the Jew. Bass. You shall not seal to such a bond for me, I'll rather dwell 11 in my necessity.
Ant. Why, fear not, man; I will not forfeit it; Within these two months, that's a month before This bond expires, I do expect return Of thrice three times the value of this bond.
Shy. O father Abraham, what these Christians are; Whose own hard dealings teaches them suspect The thoughts of others ! Pray you, tell me this; If he should break his day, what should I gain By the exaction of the forfeiture ? A pound of man's flesh, taken from a man, Is not so estimable, profitable neither, As flesh of muttons, beefs, or goats. I say,
11 i.e. continue; to abide has both the senses of habitation and continuance.
To buy his favour, I extend this friendship:
my love, I pray you wrong me not. Ant. Yes, Shylock, I will seal unto this bond.
Shy. Then meet me forthwith at the notary's; Give him direction for this
bond, And I will
the ducats straight;
Hie thee, gentle Jew. This Hebrew will turn Christian; he grows kind.
Bass. I like not fair terms, and a villain's mind.
Ant. Come on: in this there can be no dismay, My ships come home a month before the day.
SCENE I. Belmont.
A Room in Portia's House. Flourish of Cornets. Enter the Prince of Morocco, and his Train; POR
TIA, NERISSA, and other of her Attendants.
Mor. Mislike me not for my complexion,
12 Fearful guard is a guard that is not to be trusted, but gives cause of fear. To fear was anciently to give as well as feel ter
So in K. Henry IV. Part 1.
* A mighty and a fearful head they are.'