And in the morning early will we both
Fly toward Belmont: Come, Antonio.



The same. A street.


Por. Inquire the Jew's house out, give him this deed,
And let him sign it; we'll away to-night,
And be a day before our husbands home:
This deed will be well welcome to Lorenzo.

Gra. Fair sir, you are well overtaken :
My lord Bassanio, upon more advice,
Hath sent you here this ring; and doth entreat
Your company at dinner.

That cannot be :
This ring I do accept most thankfully,
And so, I pray you, tell him: Furthermore,
I pray you, show my youth old Shylock's house.

Gra. That will I do.

Sir, I would speak with you :-
I'll see if I can get my husband's ring, [To PORTÍA.
Which I did make him swear to keep for ever.

Por. Thou may'st, I warrant; We shall have old swearThat they did give the ring's away to men; [ing, But we'll outface them, and outswear them too. Away make haste; thou know'st where I will tarry. Ner. Come, good sir, will you show me to this house?



SCENE I.-Belmont. Avenue to Portia's House.

Enter LORENZO and JESSICA. Lor. The moon shines bright:-In such a night as this, When the sweet wind did gently kiss the trees,

advice,-) i. e. Reflection.


And they did make no noise; in such a night,
Triolus, methinks, mounted the Trojan walls,
And sigh’d his soul toward the Grecian tents,
Where Cressed lay that night.

In such a night,
Did Thisbe fearfully o’ertrip the dew ;
And saw the lion's shadow ere himself,
And ran dismay'd away.

In such a night,
Stood Dido with a willow in her hand
Upon the wild sea-banks, and way'd her love
To come again to Carthage.

In such a night,
Medea gather’d the enchanted herbs
That did renew old Æson.

In such a night,
Did Jessica steal from the wealthy Jew :
And with an unthrift love did run from Venice,
As far as Belmont.

In such a night,
Did young Lorenzo swear he lov'd her well;
Stealing her soul with many vows of faith,
And ne'er a true one.

And in such a night,
Did pretty Jessica, like a little shrew,
Slander her love, and he forgave it her.

Jes. I would out-night you, did nobody come: But, hark, I hear the footing of a man.


Lor. Who comes so fast in silence of the night?
Steph. A friend.
Lor. A friend? what friend ? your name I pray you,

Steph. Stephano is my name; and I bring word,
My mistress will before the break of day
Be here at Belmont; she doth stray about
By holy crosses, where she kneels and prays
For happy wedlock hours.


Who comes with her ?
Steph. None, but a holy hermit, and her maid.
I pray you, is my master yet return'd ?

Lor. He is not, nor we have not heard from him.
But go we in, I pray thee, Jessica,
And ceremoniously let us prepare
Some welcome for the mistress of the house.


Laun. Sola, sola, wo ha, ho, sola, sola!
Lor. Who calls ?

Laun. Sola! did you see master Lorenzo, and mistress Lorenzo ? sola, sola!

Lor. Leave hollaing, man; here.
Laun. Sola! where? where?
Lor. Here.

Laun. Tell him, there's a post come from my master, with his horn full of good news; my master will be here ere morning

[Exit. Lor. Sweet soul, let's in, and there expect their coming. And yet no matter ;-Why should we go in ? My friend Stephano, signify, I pray you, Within the house, your mistress is at hand : And bring your musick forth into the air.

[Exit STEPHANO. How sweet the moon-light sleeps upon this bank ! Here will we sit, and let the sounds of musick Creep in our ears; soft stillness, and the night, Become the touches of sweet harmony. Sit, Jessica: Look, how the floor of heaven Is thick inlaid with patines of bright gold; There's not the smallest orb, which thou behold'st, But in his motion like an angel sings, Still quiring to the young-eyed cherubins : Such harmony is in immortal souls; But, whilst this muddy vesture of decay Doth grossly close it in, we cannot hear it.

with patines of bright gold ;] A patine, from patina, Lat. A patine is the small filat dish or plate used with the chalice, in the administration of the Eucharist. In the time of popery, and probably in the following age, it was commonly made of gold.-MALONE.

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Enter Musicians.

Come, ho, and wake Diana with a hymn ;)
With sweetest touches pierce your mistress' ear,
And draw her home with musick.
Jes. I am never merry when I hear sweet musick.

Lor. The reason is your spirits are attentive :
For do but note a wild and wanton herd,
Or race of youthful and unhandled colts,
Fetching mad bounds, bellowing, and neighing loud,
Which is the hot condition of their blood;
If they but hear perchance a trumpet sound,
Or any air of musick touch their ears,
You shall perceive them make a mutual stand,
Their savage eyes turn'd to a modest gaze,
By the sweet power of musick : Therefore, the poet
Did feign that Orpheus drew trees, stones, and floods;
Since nought so stockish, hard, and full of rage, ,
But musick for the time doth change his nature:
The man that hath no musick in himself,
Nor is not mov'd with concord of sweet sounds,
Is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils ;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night,
And his affections dark as Erebus :
Let no such man be trusted.-Mark the musick.


wake Diana with a hymn;] Diana is the moon, who is in the next scene represented as sleeping.-Johnson.

i The man that hath no musick in himself, &c.] This sentiment arouses all the indignation of Steevens, and he endeavours to defend those unhappy persons, whom a defect in the organs of sound have subjected to the condemnation of the poet, by several quotations of an opposite tendency from the Letters of Lord Chesterfield. If Mr. Steevens's untuneful friends possess a spark of nobleness, they will rather lie under the malediction of the poet than owe their justification to the advocacy of the peer. This passage of Shakspeare may be contrasted with the following lines from Massinger's Fatal Dowry, Act iv. sc. 2.

I never was an enemy to music,
Nor yet do I subscribe to the opinion
Of those old captains, that thought nothing musical
But cries of yielding enemies, neighing of horses,
Clashing of armour, loud shouts, drums and trumpets :
Nor, on the other side, in favour of it,
Affirm the world was made by musical discord;
Or that the happiness of our life consists
In a rich varied note upon the lute:
I love it to the worth of it and no further.

Enter Portia and NERISSA, at a distance.

Por. That light we see, is burning in my hall,
How far that little candle throws his beams !
So shines a good deed in a naughty world.

Ner. When the moon shone, we did not see the candle.

Por. So doth the greater glory dim the less :
A substitute shines brightly as a king,
Until a king be by; and then his state
Empties itself, as doth an inland brook
Into the main of waters. Musick ! hark !

Ner. It is your musick, madam, of the house,

Por. Nothing is good, I see, without respect ;k Methinks, it sounds much sweeter than by day.

Ner. Silence bestows that virtue on it, madam.

Por. The crow doth sing as sweetly as the lark,
When neither is attended; and, I think,
The nightingale, if she should sing by day,
When every goose is cackling, would be thought
No better a musician than the wren.
How many things by season seasoned are
To their right praise, and true perfection!
Peace, hoa! the moon sleeps with Endymion,
And would not be awak'd !

[Musick ceases. Lor.

That is the voice, Or I am much deceiv'd, of Portia.

Por. He knows me, as the blind man knows the cuckoo, By the bad voice. Lor.

Dear lady, welcome home.
Por. We have been praying for our husbands' welfare,
Which speed, we hope, the better for our words.
Are they return'd?

Madam, they are not yet;
But there is come a messenger before,
To signify their coming.

Go in, Nerissa,
Give order to my servants, that they take
No note at all of our being absent hence ;

without respect ;] Not absolutely good, but relatively good as it is modified by circumstances.-Johnson.


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