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Belmont. A room in PORTIA's house
Enter BASSANIO, PORTIA, GRATIANO, NERISSA, and all
Por. I pray you, tarry. Pause a day or two
Let me choose;
Por. Upon the rack, Bassanio! Then confess
What treason there is mingled with your love.
Bass. There may as well be amity and life 'Tween snow and fire, as treason and my love.
Por. Ay, but I fear you speak upon the rack, 5 Where men enforced do speak anything.
Bass. Promise me life, and I'll confess the truth.
“Confess and love" Had been the very sum of my confession. 100 happy torment, when my torturer
Doth teach me answers for deliverance !
Por. Away, then! I am lock'd in one of them;
Let music sound while he doth make his choice;
May stand more proper, my eye shall be the stream 20 And watery death-bed for him. He may win;
And what is music then? Then music is
Now he goes,
Than young Alcides, when he did redeem
To the sea-monster. I stand for sacrifice;
A song, the whilst BASSANIO comments on the caskets to
Tell me where is fancy bred,
Let us all ring fancy's knell ;
I'll begin it, - Ding, dong, bell. All. Ding, dong, bell.
Bass. So may the outward shows be least themselves; The world is still deceiv'd with ornament. In law, what plea so tainted and corrupt But, being season'd with a gracious voice, Obscures the show of evil? In religion, What damned error but some sober brow Will bless it and approve it with a text,
Hiding the grossness with fair ornament?
Por. [Aside.] How all the other passions fleet to air,
What find I here?
[Opening the leaden casket.] Fair Portia's counterfeit! What demi-god Hath come so near creation ? Move these eyes? Or whether, riding on the balls of mine, Seem they in motion ? Here are sever'd lips, Parted with sugar breath; so sweet a bar Should sunder such sweet friends. Here in her hairs The painter plays the spider, and hath woven