Imágenes de páginas

Live thou, I live; with much, much more difmay
I view the fight, than thou, that mak'ft the fray.
[Mufick within.
A Song, whilft Baffanio comments on the caskets to

Tell me, where is fancy bred,
Or in the heart, or in the head?
How begot, how nourished?
Reply, reply.

It is engender'd in the eye,
With gazing fed, and fancy
In the cradle where it lyes:
Let us all ring fancy's knell.
I'll begin it.

Ding, dong, bell.

All, Ding, dong, bell.


Baff. So may the outward fhows be leaft themselves: The world is ftill deceiv'd with Ornament.

In law, what plea fo tainted and corrupt,
But being feafon'd with a gracious voice,
Obfcures the fhow of evil? in religion,
What damned error, but fome fober brow
Will bless it, and approve it with a text,
Hiding the grofsnefs with fair ornament ?
There is no vice fo fimple, but affumes
Some mark of virtue on its outward parts.
How many cowards, whofe hearts are all as falfe
As ftairs of fand, wear yet upon their chins
The beards of Hercules and frowning Mars;
Who, inward fearcht, have livers white as milk?
And these affume but valour's excrement,
To render them redoubted. Look on beauty,
And you fhall fee 'tis purchat'd by the weight,
Which therein works a miracle in nature,
Making them lighteft, that wear most of it.
So are those crifpy fnaky golden locks,
Which make fuch wanton gambols with the wind
Upon fuppofed fairness, often known


To be the dowry of a fecond head,
The skull, that bred them, in the fepulcher.
Thus Ornament is but the guiled shore

To a moft dang'rous fea; the beauteous scarf
Veiling an Indian beauty; in a word,

The feeming truth which cunning times put on
T'entrap the wifeft. Then, thou gaudy gold,
Hard food for Midas, I will none of thee:
Nor none of thee, thou pale and common drudge
"Tween man and man: but thou, thou meager lead,
Which rather threatneft, than doft promife aught, (11)
Thy plainnefs moves me more than eloquence;
And here chufe I; joy be the confequence !

Por. How all the other paffions fleet to air,
As doubtful thoughts, and rafh-embrac'd defpair,
And fhudd'ring fear, and green-ey'd jealoufie.
O love, be moderate, allay thy ecftafie;
In measure rain thy joy, fcant this excefs,
I feel too much thy bleffing, make it lefs,
For fear I furfeit.

[Opening the leaden casker

[ocr errors]

Baff. What find I here?
Fair Portia's counterfeit ? what Demy-god
Hath come fo near creation? move these eyes ?*
Or whether, riding on the balls of mine,
Seem they in motion? here are fever'd lips
Parted with fugar breath; fo fweet a bar

Should funder fuch fweet friends: here in her hairs
The painter plays the fpider, and hath woven
A golden mesh t' intrap the hearts of men,

(11) Thy Palenefs moves me more than Eloquence ;] Bassanio` is difpleas'd at the golden Casket for its Gawdinefs, and the Silver one for its Palenefs; but, What! is he charm'd with the Leaden one for having the very fame Quality that dif pleas'd him in the Silver? The Poet never intended fuch an abfurd Reasoning. He certainly wrote,

Thy Plainnefs moves me more than Eloquence; This characterizes the Lead from the Silver, which Palenefs does not, they being both pale. Befides, there is a Beauty in the Antithefis between Plainnefs and Eloquence; between Paleness and Eloquence none, Mr. Warburton.


Fafter than gnats in cobwebs: but her eyes,-
How could he fee to do them? having made one,
Methinks, it should have pow'r to steal both his,
And leave it felf unfinish'd: yet how far

The fubftance of my praife doth wrong this shadow
In underprizing it; fo far this fhadow

Doth limp behind the Subftance. Here's the fcrowl,
The continent and fummary of my fortune.

You that chufe not by the view,
Chance as fair, and chufe as true :
Since this fortune falls to you,
Be content, and feek no new.
If you be well pleas'd with this,
And hold your fortune for your blifs,
Turn you where your Lady is,
And claim her with a loving kifs.

A gentle fcrowl; fair lady, by your leave;

[Kiffing her.

I come by note to give, and to receive.
Like one of two contending in a Prize,
That thinks he hath done well in people's eyes;
Hearing applause and univerfal fhout,
Giddy in fpirit, gazing ftill in doubt,
Whether those peals of praife be his or no;
So (thrice-fair lady) ftand I, even fo,
As doubtful whether what I fee be true,
Until confirm'd, fign'd, ratify'd by you.

Por. You fee me, lord Bassanio, where I stand,
Such as I am; tho' for my felf alone,
I would not be ambitious in my Wish,
To with my felf much better; yet for you,
I would be trebled twenty times my felf,
A thousand times more fair; ten thousand times
More rich; that, to ftand high in your account,
I might in virtues, beauties, livings, friends,
Exceed account: but the full fum of me
Is fum of fomething, which, to term in grofs,
Is an unleffon'd girl, unfchool'd, unpractis'd:


Happy in this, fhe is not yet fo old

But the may learn; more happy then in this,
She is not bred fo dull but fhe can learn ;
Happiest of all, is, that her gentle spirit
Commits it felf to yours to be directed,
As from her lord, her governor, her King:
My felf, and what is mine, to you and yours
Is now converted. But now I was the Lord
Of this fair manfion, mafter of my fervants,
Queen o'er my felf; and even now, but now,
This houfe, these fervants, and this fame my felf
Are yours, my lord: I give them with this ring,
Which, when you part from, lofe or give away,
Let it prefage the ruin of your love,

And be my vantage to exclaim on you.

Baff. Madam, you have bereft me of all words,
Only my blood fpeaks to you in my veins ;
And there is fuch Confufion in my pow'rs,
As, after fome oration fairly spoke
By a beloved Prince, there doth appear
Among the buzzing pleafed multitude;
Where every fomething, being blent together,
Turns to a wild of nothing, fave of joy
Expreft, and not expreft. But when this ring
Parts from this finger, then parts life from hence;
O, then be bold to fay, Baffanio's dead.

Ner. My lord and lady, it is now our time,
That have ftood by, and feen our wishes profper,
To cry, good joy, good joy, my lord and lady!
Gra. My lord Baffanio, and my gentle lady,
I wish you all the joy that you can wish;
For, I am fure, you can wish none from me:
And when your honours mean to folemnize
The bargain of your faith, I do beseech you,
Ev'n at that time I may be married too..

[ocr errors]

Ba. With all my heart, fo thou canft get a wife. Gra. I thank your lordship, you have got me one. My eyes, my lord, can look as fwift as yours; You faw the mistress, I beheld the maid;


You lov'd; I lov'd: for intermiffion (12)
No more pertains to me, my lord, than you.
Your fortune ftood upon the casket there;
And fo did mine too, as the matter falls:
For wooing here until I sweat again,
And fwearing, till my very roof was dry
With oaths of love; at laft, if promise last,
I got a promise of this fair one here,

To have her love, provided that your fortune
Atchiev'd her mistress.

Por. Is this true, Neriffa?

Ner. Madam, it is, fo you ftand pleas'd withal.
Baff. And do you, Gratiano, mean good faith?
Gra. Yes, faith, my lord.

Baff. Our Feaft fhall be much honour'd in your mar riage.

Gra. We'll play with them, the first boy for a thoufand Ducats.

Ner. What, and stake down?

Gra. No, we shall ne'er win at that sport, and stake down.

But who comes here? Lorenzo and his Infidel ? old Venetian friend, Salanio?

What, and


Enter Lorenzo, Jeffica, and Salanio.
Baff. Lorenzo and Salanio, welcome hither;
If that the youth of my new Intereft here
power to bid you welcome. By your leave,

(12) You lov'd; I lov'd for Intermiffion.] Thus this Paffage has been nonfenfically pointed thro' all the Editions. If loving for Intermiffion can be expounded into any Sense, I confess, I as yet am ignorant, and shall be glad to be inftructed in it. But till then I must beg leave to think, the Sentence ought to be thus regulated;

[blocks in formation]

No more pertains to me, my Lord, than Tou.

i. e. ftanding idle; a Paufe or Difcontinuance of Action. And fuch is the Signification of Intermiffio and Intermiffus amongst the Latines,


« AnteriorContinuar »