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his own child. Well, old man, I will tell you news of your son. [Kneels.] Give me your blessing: truth will come to light; murder cannot be hid long, a man's son may, but in the end truth will out.

Gob. Pray you, sir, stand up. I am sure you are not Launcelot, my boy.

Laun. Pray you, let's have no more fooling about it, but give me your blessing: I am Launcelot, your boy that was, your son that is, your child that shall be.

Gob. I cannot think you are my son.

Laun. I know not what I shall think of that ; but I am Launcelot, the Jew's man, and, I am sure, Margery, your wife, is my mother.

Gob. Her name is Margery, indeed: I'll be sworn, if thou be Launcelot, thou art mine own flesh and blood. Lord ! worshipp'd might he be! what a beard hast thou got: thou hast got more hair on thy chin, than Dobbin my phill-horse' has on his tail.

Laun. It should seem, then, that Dobbin's tail grows backward : I am sure he had more hair of his tail, than I have of my face, when I last saw him.

Gob. Lord! how art thou changed! How dost thou and thy master agree? I have brought him a present. How agree you now?

Laun. Well, well; but, for mine own part, as I have set up my rest to run away, so I will not rest till I have run some ground. My master's a very Jew: give him a present! give him a halter: I am famish'd in his service; you may tell every finger I have with my ribs. Father, I am glad you are come: give me your present to one master Bassanio, who, indeed, gives rare new liveries. If I serve not him, I will run as far as God has any ground.— rare fortune! here comes the man: —to him, father; for I am a Jew, if I serve the Jew any longer.

5

Dobbin, my PHILL-HORSE] Phill-horse, or Fill-horse, is the shaft-horse ; the horse that goes between the shafts or fills.

Enter BASSANIO, with LEONARDO, and Followers. Bass. You may do so ;—but let it be so hasted, that supper be ready at the farthest by five of the clock. See these letters delivered : put the liveries to making, and desire Gratiano to come anon to my lodging.

[Exit a Servant.
Laun. To him, father.
Gob. God bless your worship !
Bass. Gramercy. Would'st thou aught with me?
Gob. Here's my son, sir, a poor boy,-

Laun. Not a poor boy, sir, but the rich Jew's man, that would, sir,--as my father shall specify.

Gob. He hath a great infection, sir, as one would say, to serve

Laun. Indeed, the short and the long is, I serve the Jew, and have a desire,-as my father shall specify.

Gob. His master and he (saving your worship’s reverence,) are scarce cater-cousins.

Laun. To be brief, the very truth is, that the Jew having done me wrong, doth cause me,-as my father, being, I hope, an old man, shall frutify unto you.

Gob. I have here a dish of doves, that I would bestow upon your worship; and my suit is,

Laun. In very brief, the suit is impertinent to myself, as your lordship shall know by this honest old man; and, though I say it, though old man, yet, poor man,

my father.

Bass. One speak for both.— What would you?
Laun. Serve you, sir.
Gob. That is the very defect of the matter, sir.

Bass. I know thee well: thou hast obtain’d thy suit.
Shylock, thy master, spoke with me this day,
And hath preferr’d thee; if it be preferment,
To leave a rich Jew's service, to become
The follower of so poor a gentleman.

Laun. The old proverb is very well parted between

VOL. II.

Kk

my master Shylock and you, sir : you have the grace of God, sir, and he hath enough. Bass. Thou speak’st it well.-Go, father, with thy

son.Take leave of thy old master, and inquire My lodging out.—Give him a livery

[To his followers. More guarded than his fellows’: see it done.

Laun. Father, in. I cannot get a service,—no; I have ne'er a tongue in my head.— Well; [Looking on his palm ;] if any man in Italy have a fairer table’, which doth offer to swear upon a book.—I shall bave good fortune.—Go to; here's a simple line of life! here's a small trifle of wives: alas ! fifteen wives is nothing: eleven widows, and nine maids, is a simple coming-in for one man; and then, to 'scape drowning thrice, and to be in peril of my life with the edge of a feather-bed :-here are simple 'scapes ! Well, if fortune be a woman, she's a good wench for this gear.Father, come; I'll take my leave of the Jew in the twinkling of an eyes.

[Excunt LAUNCELOT and Old GOBBO. Bass. I pray thee, good Leonardo, think on this. . These things being bought, and orderly bestow'd, Return in haste, for I do feast to-night My best-esteem'd acquaintance: hie thee; go. Leon. My best endeavours shall be done herein.

Enter GRATIANO. Gra. Where is your master?

7

6 More GUARDED – ] i. e. More ornamented. See note 2, p. 51.

- a fairer TabLE,) Astrologers called the open palm of the hand the table, and Launcelot looks upon his palm while he disserts upon his fortune. There has been a good deal of dispute as to the pointing of what follows these words, but I have adopted that punctuation which Johnson recommended, and which seems best to convey the meaning of the author.

in the twinkling of AN EYE.] The 4to. by Heyes and the folio omit of an eye, which words are found in the 4to. by Roberts, and are obviously necessary : the case would have been different, had the indefinite article stood before twinkling : “in a twinkling” might have been sufficient.

Leon.

Yonder, sir, he walks.

[Exit LEONARDO. Gra. Signior Bassanio! Bass. Gratiano. Gra. I have a suit to you. Bass.

You have obtain'd it. Gra. You must not deny me. I must go with you to Belmont. Bass. Why, then you must; but hear thee, Gra

tiano.
Thou art too wild, too rude, and bold of voice;
Parts, that become thee happily enough,
And in such eyes as ours appear not faults ;
But where thou art not known, why, there they show
Something too liberal.-Pray thee, take pain
To allay with some cold drops of modesty
Thy skipping spirit, lest through thy wild behaviour,
I be misconstrued in the place I go to,
And lose my hopes.
Gra.

Signior Bassanio, hear me:
If I do not put on a sober habit,
Talk with respect, and swear but now and then,
Wear prayer-books in my pocket, look demurely;
Nay more, while grace is saying, hood mine eyes
Thus with my hat, and sigh, and say amen;
Use all the observance of civility,
Like one well studied in a sad ostento
To please his grandam, never trust me more.

Bass. Well, we shall see your bearing.
Gra. Nay, but I bar to-night: you shall not gage

me

By what we do to-night.
Bass.

No, that were pity.
I would entreat you rather to put on
Your boldest suit of mirth, for we have friends

sad ostent - ] i.e. Grave appearance. See note 10, p. 221.

That purpose merriment. But fare you well,
I have some business.

Gra. And I must to Lorenzo, and the rest;
But we will visit you at supper-time. [E.reunt.

SCENE III.

The Same. A Room in SHYLOCK's House.

Enter JESSICA and LAUNCELOT.

Jes. I am sorry, thou wilt leave my father so :
Our house is hell, and thou, a merry devil,
Didst rob it of some taste of tediousness.
But fare thee well; there is a ducat for thee.
And, Launcelot, soon at supper shalt thou see
Lorenzo, who is thy new master's guest;
Give him this letter; do it secretly,
And so farewell: I would not have my father
See me in talk with thee.

Laun. Adieu !-tears exhibit my tongue.- Most beautiful pagan,-most sweet Jew! If a Christian do not play the knave, and get thee', I am much deceived: but, adieu! these foolish drops do somewhat drown my manly spirit: adieu !

[Exit. Jes. Farewell, good Launcelot.Alack, what heinous sin is it in me, To be asham'd to be my father's child! But though I am a daughter to his blood, I am not to his manners. O Lorenzo ! If thou keep promise, I shall end this strife, Become a Christian, and thy loving wife. [Exit

.

1 If a Christian do not play the knave, and get thee, I am much deceived :} The two quartos and the first folio agree in this reading, and the meaning may be, “if a Christian do not play the knave and obtain thee,” &c. ; but very possibly “do” was misprinted for did, and in that case the meaning would not be disputable : the second folio has did.

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