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My mistress will before the break of day

Enter Portia and Nerissa, at a distance. Be here at Belmont: she doth stray about

Por. That light we see, is burning in my hall.
By holy crosses, where she kneels and prays How far that little candle throws his beams!
For happy wedlock hours.

So shines a good deed in a naughty world.
Who comes with her?

Ner. When the moon shone, we did not see the Steph. None, but a holy hermit, and her maid.

candle. I pray you, is my master yet return'd? Lor. He is not, nor we have not heard from A substitute shines brightly as a king,

Por. So doth the greater glory dim the less : him.

Until a king be by; and then his state But go we in, I pray thee, Jessica,

Empties itself, as doth an inland brook And ceremoniously let us prepare

Into the main of waters. Music ! hark!
Some welcome for the mistress of the house.

Ner. It is your music, madam, of the house.
Enter Launcelot.

Por. Nothing is good, I see, without respect;

Methinks, it sounds much sweeter than by day. Laun. Sola, sola, wo ha, ho, sola, sola!

Ner. Silence bestows that virtue on it, madam Lor. Who calls ? Laun. Sola! did you see master Lorenzo, and when neither is attended; and, I think,

Por. The crow doth sing as sweetly as the lark, mistress Lorenzo! sola, sola! Lor. Leave hollaing, man; here.

The nightingale, if she should sing by day,

When every goose is cackling, would be thought Laur. Sola! where? where?

No better a musician than the wren.
Lor. Here.
Laun. Tell him, there's a post come from my || To their right praise, and true perfection !

How many things by season season'd are master, with his horn full of good news; my master | Peace, hoa! the moon sleeps with Endymion, will be here ere morning.

(Exit. And would not be awak'd ! (Music ceases. Lor. Sweet soul, let's in, and there expect their


That is the voice,

Or I am much deceiv'd, of Portia.
And yet no matter ;-Why should we go in?
My friend Stepháno, signify, I pray you,

Por. He knows me, as the blind man knows the

cuckoo, Within the house, your mistress is at hand;

By the bad voice. And bring your music forth into the air. -

Lor. Dear lady, welcome home. [Exit Stephano.

Por. We have been praying for our husbands' How sweet the moonlight sleeps upon this bank!

welfare, Here will we sit, and let the sounds of music Creep in our ears; soft stillness, and the night,

Which speed, we hope, the better for our words. Become the touches of sweet harmony.

Are they return'd?

Lor. Sit, Jessica : Look, how the floor of heaven

Madam, they are not yet ; Is thick inlaid with patinesl of bright gold;

But there is come a messenger before,
There's not the smallest orb, which thou behold'st,

To signify their coming.

Go in, Nerissa,
But in his motion like an angel sings,
Still quiring to the young-ey'd cherubins :

Give order to my servants, that they take
Such harmony is in immortal souls ;

No note at all of our being absent hence ;But, whilst this muddy vesture of decay,

Nor you, Lorenzo ;-Jessica, nor you.

(A tucket2 sounds. Doth grossly close it in, we cannot hear it.

Lor. Your husband is at hand, I hear his trumpet: Enter musicians.

We are no tell-tales, madam ; fear you not. Come, ho, and wake Diana with a hymn ;

Por. This night, methinks, is but the day-light

With sweetest touches pierce your mistress' ear,
And draw her home with music.

It looks a little paler; 'tis a day,
Jes. Iam never merry, when I hear sweet music. Such as the day is when the sun is hid.

(Music. | Enter Bassanio, Antonio, Gratiano, and their folLor. The reason is, your spirits are attentive :

lowers. For do but note a wild and wanton herd,

Bass. We should hold day with the Antipodes, Or race of youthful and unhandled colts,

If you would walk in absence of the sun. Fetching mad bounds, bellowing, and neighing

Por. Let me give light, but let me not be light; loud, Which is the hot condition of their blood;

For a light wife

doth make a heavy husband,

And never be Bassanio so for me If they but hear perchance a trumpet sound, But God sort all!—You are welcome home, my lord Or any air of music touch their ears, You shall perceive them make a mutual stand,

Bass. I thank you, madam : give welcome to my

friend. -
Their savage eyes turn'd to a modest gaze, This is the man, this is Antonio,
By the sweet power of music: Therefore, the poet To whom I am so infinitely bound.
Díd feign that Orpheus drew trees, stones, and

Por. You should in all sense be much bound to floods;

him, Since nought so stockish, hard, and full of rage,

For, as I hear, he was much bound for you. But music for the time doth change his nature : Ant. No more than I am well acquitted of. The man that hath no music in himself, Nor is not mov'd with concord of sweet sounds,

Por. Sir, you are very welcome to our house : Is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils ;

It must appear in other ways than words,

Therefore, 1 scant this breathing courtesy: 3 The motions of his spirit are dull as night,

(Gratiano and Nerissa seem to talk apart. And his affections dark as Erebus :

Gra. By yonder moon, I swear, you do me Let no such man be trusted.—Mark the music.

wrong i (1) A small flat dish, used in the administration (2) A flourish on a trumpet. of the Eucharist.

(3) Verbal, complimentary form

In faith, I gave it to the judge's clerk :

Which did refuse three thousand ducats of me, Would be were gelt that had it, for my part, And begy'd the ring; the which I did deny him, Since you do take it, love, so much at heart." And surfer'd him to go displeas'd away :

Por. A quarrel, ho, already ? what's the matter? Even he that had held up the very life

Gra. About a hoop of gold, a paltry ring Of my dear friend. What should I say, sweet lady? That she did give me; whose posy was

I was enforc'd to send it after him; For all the world, like cutler's poetry

I was beset with shame and courtesy ;
Upon a knife, Love me, and leave me not. My honour would not let ingratitude

Ner. What talk you of the posy, or the value ? || So much besmear it: Pardon me, good lady;
You swore to me, when I did give it you, For, by these blessed candles of the night,
That you would wear it till your hour of death; Had you been there, I think, you would have begg'd
And that it should lie with you in your grave : The ring of me to give the worthy doctor.
Though not for me, yet for your vehement oaths, Por. Let not that doctor e'er come near my
You should have been respective, and have kept it.

house : Gave it a judge's clerk !--but well I know, Since he hath got the jewel that I lov'd, The clerk will ne'er wear hair on his face, that and that which you did swear to keep for me, had it.

I will become as liberal as you :
Gra. He will, an if he live to be a man. I'll not deny him any thing I have,
Ner. Ay, if a woman live to be a man. No, not my body, nor my husband's bed :

Gra. Now, by this hand, I gave it to a youth,— Know him I shall, I am well sure of it:
A kind of boy; a little scrubbed boy,

Lie not a night from home; watch me like Argus: No higher than thyself, the judge's clerk; If you do not, if I be left alone, A prating boy, that begg'd it as a fee;

Now, by mine honour, which is yet my own, I could not for my heart deny it him.

I'll have that doctor for my bedfellow. Por. You were to blame, I must be plain with you, Ner. And I his clerk; therefore be well advis'd, To part so slightly with your wife's first gift; How you do leave me to mine own protection. A thing stuck

on with oaths upon your finger, Gra. Well, do you so: let not me take him then; And riveted so with faith unto your flesh. For, if I do, I'll mar the young clerk's pen. I gave my love a ring, and made him swear Ant. I am the unhappy subject of these quarrels. Never to part with it; and here he stands ; Por. Sir, grieve not you; You are welcome I dare be sworn for him, he would not leave it,

notwithstanding Nor pluck it from his finger, for the wealth Bass. Portia, forgive me this enforced wrong ; That the world masters. Now, in faith, Gratiano,|| And, in the hearing of these many friends, You give your wife too unkind a cause of grief; I swear to thee, even by thine own fair eyes, An 'twere to me, I should be mad at it. Wherein I see myself, Bass. Why, I were best to cut my left hand off, Por.

Mark you but that! And swear, I lost the ring defending it. (Aside In both my eyes he doubly sees himself:

Gra. My lord Bassanio gave his ring away In each eye one :swear by your double self, Unto the judge that begg'd it, and, indeed, And there's an oath of credit. Deserv'd it too; and then the boy, his clerk,


Nay, but hear me : That took some pains in writing, he begg'd mine : Pardon this fault, and by my soul I swear, And neither man, nor master, would take aught I never more will break an oath with thee.. Bat the two rings.

Ant. I once did lend my body for his wealth ;? Por.

What ring gave you, my lord? Which, but for him that had your husband's ring, Not that, I hope, which you receiv'd of me.

[To Portia. Bass. If I could add a lie unto a fault, Had quite miscarried : I dare be bound again, I would deny it; but you see my finger

My soul upon the forfeit, that your lord Hath not the ring upon it, it is gone.

Will never more break faith advisedly. Por. Even so void is your false heart of truth. Por. Then you shall be his surety: Give him this; By heaven, I will ne'er come in your bed And bid him keep it better than the other. Until I see the ring.

Ant. Here, lord Bassanio; swear to keep this Ner. Nor I in yours,

ring. Till I again see mine.

Bass. By heaven, it is the same I gave the doctor! Bass. Sweet Portia,

Por. I had it of 'him: pardon me, Bassanio; If you did know to whom I gave the ring, For by this ring the doctor lay with me. If you did know for whom I gave the ring, Ner. And pardon me, my gentle Gratiano; And would conceive for what I gave the ring, For that same scrubbed boy, the doctor's clerk, And how unwillingly I left the ring,

In lieu of this, last night did lie with me. When nought would be accepted but the ring, Gra. Why, this is like the mending of highways You would abate the strength of your displeasure. In summer, where the ways are fair enough:

Por. If you had known the virtue of the ring, What! are we cuckolds, ere we have deserv'd it? Or half her worthiness that gave the ring,

Por. Speak not so grossly.-You are all amaz'd: Or your own honour to contain the ring, Here is a letter, read it at your leisure ; You would not then have parted with the ring. It comes from Padua, from Bellario : What man is there so much unreasonable, There you shall find, that Portia was the doctor ; If you had pleas'd to have defended it,

Nerissa there, her clerk : Lorenzo here With any terms of zeal, wanted the modesty Shall witness, I set forth as soon as you, To urge the thing held as a ceremony?

And but even now return'd; I have not yet Nerissa teaches me what to believe;

Enter'd my house.-Antonio, you are welcome; I'll die fort, but some woman had the ring. And I have better news in store for you,

Bass. No, by mine honour, madam, by my soul, Than you expect : unseal this letter soon ; No woman had it, but a civil doctor,

There you shall find, three of your argosies

Are richly come to harbour suddenly : (1) Regardful. (2) Advantage. You shall not know by what strange accident

I chanced on this letter.

And charge us there upon intergatories,
I am dumb.

And we will answer all things faithfully. Bass. Were you the doctor, and I knew you Gra. Let it be so: The first intergatory, not?

That my Nerissa shall be sworn on, is, Gra. Were you the clerk, that is to make me whether till the next night she had rather stay; cuckold?

Or go to bed now, being two hours to day : Ner. Ay; but the clerk that never means to do it, || But were the day come, I should wish it dark, Unless he live until he be a man.

That I were couching with the doctor's clerk. Bass. Sweet doctor, you shall be my bedfellow : Well, while I live, I'll fear no other thing When I am absent, then lie with my wife. So sore, as keeping safe Nerissa's ring. Ant. Sweet lady, you have given me life, and

(Exeunt living; For here I read' for certain, that my ships Are safely come to road. Por.

How now, Lorenzo ?

of the Merchant of Venice the style is even and My clerk hath some good comforts too for you. Ner. Ay, and I'll give them him without a of construction. The comic part raises laughter,

easy, with few peculiarities of diction, or anomalies fee.

and the serious fixes expectation. The probability There do I give to you, and Jessica,

of either one or the other story cannot be mainFrom the rich Jew, a special deed of gift,

tained. The union of two actions in one event is After his death, of all he dies possess'd of.

in this drama eminently happy. Dryden was Lor. Fair ladies, you drop manna in the way Of starved people.

much pleased with his own address in connecting

the two plots of his Spanish Friar, which yet, I Por. It is almost morning,

believe, the critic will find excelled by this play. And yet, I am sure, you are not satisfied Of these events at full: Let us go in;



PERSONS REPRESENTED. Duke, living in exile.

William, a country fellow, in love with Audrey. Frederick, brother to the Duke, and usurper of A person representing Hymen.

his dominions. Amiens, lords attending upon the Duke in his Jaques, 3 banishment.

Rosalind, daughter to the banished Duke. Le Beau, a courtier attending upon Frederick.

Celia, daughter to Frederick. Charles, his wrestler.

Phebe, a shepherdess.

Audrey, a country wench.
Jaques, sons of sir Rowland de Bois.

Lords belonging to the two Dukes; pages, foresters, Adam, servants to Oliver.

and other attendants. Dennis, Touchstone, a clown.

The Scene lies, first, near Oliver's house ; after Sir Oliver Mar-text, a vicar.

wards, partly in the usurper's court, and partly in the forest of Arden.

Sylvius, } shepherds.


Oli. What mar you then, sir? SCENE I.-An orchard, near Oliver's house. Il which God made, a poor unworthy brother of

Orl. Marry, sir, I am helping you to mar that Enter Orlando and Adam.

yours, with idleness. Orlando.


. Marry, sir, be better employ'd, and be As I remember, Adam, it was upon this fashion

naught a while.

Orl. Shall I keep your hogs, and eat husks with bequeathed me: By will, but a poor thousandthem? What prodigal portion have I spent, that I crowns; and, as thou say'st, charged my brother, should come to such penury? on his blessing, to breed me well : and there be

Oli. Know you where you are, sir? gins my sadness. My brother Jaques he keeps at

Orl. O, sir, very well : here in your orchard. school, and report speaks goldenly of his profit :

Oli. Know you before whom, sir? for my part, he keeps me rustically at home, or, to

Orl. Ay, better than he I am before knows me. speak more properly, stays me here at home un- | I know you are my eldest brother, and, in the genkept: For call you that keeping for a gentlemantle condition of blood, you should so know me: of my birth, that differs not from the stalling of an The courtesy of nations allows you my better, in ox?' His horses are bred better; for, besides that that you are the first-born; but the same tradition they are fair with their feeding, they are taught|takes not away my blood, were there twenty brotheir manage, and to that end riders dearly hired :thers betwixt us: I have as much of my father in but I, his brother, gain nothing under him but me, as you; albeit, I confess, your coming before growth;

for the which his animals on his dung || me is nearer to his reverence. hills are as much bound to him as I. Besides this

Oli. What, boy! nothing that he so plentifully gives me, the some

Orl. Come, come, elder brother, you are too thing that nature gave me, his countenance seems young in this. to take from me: he lets me feed with his hinds, Ol. Wilt thou lay hands on me, villain? bars me the place of a brother, and, as much as Orl. I am no villain:2 I am the youngest son of in him lies, mines my gentility with my education. || sir Rowland de Bois; he was my father; and he This is it, Adam, that grieves me; and the spirit is thrice a villain, that says, such a father begot of my father, which I think is within me, begins villains : Wert thou not my brother, I would not to mutiny against this servitude : I will no longer || take this hand from thy throat, till this other had endure it, though yet I know no wise remedy how || pulled out thy tongue for saying so; thou hast railto avoid it.

ed on thyself. Enter Oliver.

Adam. Sweet masters, be patient; for your faAdam. Yonder comes my master, your brother. ther's remembrance, be at accord. Orl. Go apart, Adam, and thou shalt hear how

Oli. Let me go, I say. he will shake me up.

Orl. I will not, till I please : you shall hear me, Oli. Now, sir! what make you here ?1 My father charged you in his will to give me good Orl. Nothing: I am not taught to make any : you have trained me like a peasant, ob

scuring and hiding from me all gentleman-like (1) What do you here?

qualities : the spirit of my father grows strong in (2) Villain is used in a double sense ; by Oliver me, and I will no longer endure it: therefore allow for a worthless fellow, and by Orlando for a man me such exercises as may become a gentleman, or of base extraction.

give me the poor allottery my father left me by tes

tament; with that I will go buy my fortunes. and have by underhand means laboured to dissuade

Oli. And what wilt thou do? beg, when that is him from it; but he is resolute. I'll tell thee, spent? Well, sir, get you in : I will not long be Charles-it is the stubbornest young fellow of troubled with you : you shall have some part of France ; full of ambition, an envious emulator of your will: I pray you, leave me.

every man's good parts, a secret and villanous Orl. I will no further offend you than becomes contriver against me his natural brother; thereme for my good.

fore use thy discretion; I had as lief thou didst Oli. Get you with him, you old dog.

break his neck as his finger : And thou wert best Adam. Is old dog my reward? Most true, I look to't; for if thou dost him any slight disgrace, have lost my teeth in your service.--God be with or if he do not mightily grace himself on thee, be my old master, he would not have spoke such a will practise against thee by poison, entrap thee by word.

(Exeunt Orlando and Adam.some treacherous device, and never leave thee till Oli. Is it even so ? begin you to grow upon me? he hath ta'en thy life by some indirect means or I will physic your rankness, and yet give no thou-other: for, I assure thee, and almost with tears I sand crowns neither.-Holla, Dennis ?

speak it, there is not one so young and so villanous Enter Dennis.

this day living. I speak but brotherly of him:

but should I anatomize him to thee as he is, I Den. Calls your worship?

must blush and weep, and thou must look pale Oli. Was not Charles, the Duke's wrestler, here and wonder. to speak with me?

Cha. I am heartily glad I came hither to you: Den. So please you, he is here at the door, and If he come tomorrow, I'll give him bis payment: importunes access to you.

If ever he go alone again, I'll never wrestle for Oli. Call him in. (Exit Dennis.]—"Twill be a prize more: And so, God keep your worship! good way; and to-morrow the wrestling is.

[Exit. Enter Charles.

Oli. Farewell, good Charles.--Now will I stir

this gamester :2 I hope, I shall see an end of him ; Cha. Good morrow to your worship. for my soul, yet I know not why, hates nothing

Oli. Good monsieur Charles ! what's the new more than he. Yet he's gentle; never school'd, news at the new court?

and yet learned ; full of noble device; of all sorts Cha. There's no news at the court, sir, but the enchantingly beloved; and, indeed, so much in old news: that is, the old duke is banished by his the heart of the world, and especially of my own younger brother the new duke ; and three or four people, who best know him, that I am altogether loving lords have put themselves into voluntary misprized: but it shall not be so long; this wrestler exile with him, whose lands and revenues enrichshall clear all : nothing remains, but that I kindle the new duke; therefore he gives them good leavel || the boy thither, which now I'll go about. (Ezit. to wander.

Oli. Can you tell, if Rosalind, the duke's daughter, SCENE II.-A lawn before the Duke's palace. be banished with her father?

Enter Rosalind and Celia. Cha. O, no; for the duke's daughter, her cousin. Cel. I pray thee, Rosalind, sweet my coz, be so loves her, -being ever from their cradles bred merry, together,--that she would have followed her exile, Rós. Dear Celia, I show more mirth than I'am or have died to stay behind her. She is at the mistress of ; and would you yet I were merrier ? court, and no less beloved of her uncle than his Unless you could teach me to forget a banished own daughter; and never two ladies loved as father, you must not learn me how to remember any they do.

extraordinary pleasure. Oli. Where will the old duke live?

Cel. Herein, I see, thou lovest me not with the Cha. They say, he is already in the forest of || full weight that I love thee: if my uncle, thy banArden, and a many merry men with him; and ished father, had banished thy uncle, the duke my there they live like the old Robin Hood of England: | father, so thou hadst been still with me, I could they say, many young gentlemen flock to him every have taught my love to take thy father for mine; day; and fleet the time carelessly, as they did in so would'st thou, if the truth of thy love to me the golden world.

were so righteously temper'd as mine is to thee. Oli. What, you wrestle to-morrow before the Ros. Well, I will forget the condition of my esnew duke?

tate, to rejoice in yours. Cha. Marry, do I, sir; and I came to acquaint Cel. You know, my father hath no child but I, you with a matter. I am given, sir, secretly to nor none is like to have; and, truly, when he dies, understand, that your younger brother, Orlando, || thou shalt be his heir : for what he hath taken hath a disposition to come in disguis'd against me away from thy father perforce, I will render thee to try a fall : To-morrow, sir, I wrestle for my again in affection; by mine honour, I will ; and credit: and he that escapes me without some broken when I break that oath, let me turn monster: therelimb shall acquit him well. Your brother is but fore, my sweet Rose, my dear Rose, be merry. young, and tender; and, for your love, I would be Ros. From henceforth I will, coz, and devise

path to foil him, as I must, for my own honour, if sports: let me see; What think you of falling in he come in : therefore, out of my love to you, I love ? came hither to acquaint you withal; that either you Cel. Marry, I prythee, do, to make sport withal : might stay him from his intendment, or brook | but love no man in good earnest ; nor no further in such disgrace well as he shall run into; in that it sport neither, than with safety of a pure blush thou is a thing of his own search, and altogether against may'st in honour come off again. my will.

Ros. What shall be our sport then? Oli. Charles, I thank thee for thy love to me, Cel. Let us sit and mock the good housewife, which thou shalt find I will most kindly requite. i Fortune, from her wheel, that her gifts may hencehad myself notice of my brother's purpose herein, || forth be bestowed equally. (1) A ready assent. (2) Frolicksome fellow.

(3) Of all ranks

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