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SCENE I.-A Street in Venice.
Enter LAUNCELOT GOBBO, from L. D. F. Luun. (c.) Certainly, my conscience will serve me to un from this Jew, my master: the fiend is at mine elbow, and tempts me, saying to me, “ Gobbo, Launcelot (tobbo, good Launcelot, or good Gobbo, or good Launcelot Gobbo, use your legs, take the start, run away." My conscience says_No; take heed, honest Launcelot; take heed, honest Gobbo; or," as aforesaid, “honest Launcelot Gobbo; do not run; scorn running with thy heels.". Well
, the most courageous fiend bids me pack; via! says the fiend; away, says the fiend; for the heavens rouse up a brave mind, says the fiend, and run. Well, my conscience, hanging about the neck of my heart, says very wisely to me--"my honest friend Launcelot, being an honest man's son”. or rather, an honest woman's son ;for, indeed, my father did something smack, something grow to, he had a kind of taste ;-well
, my conscience' says—" Launcelot, budge not ;" " budge,” says the fiend; " budge not,” says my conscience. Conscience, say I, you counsel well; fiend, say I, you counsel well; to be ruled by my conscience, I should stay with the Jew, my master, who, Heaven bless the mark ! is a kind of devil; and, to run away from the Jew, I should be ruled by the fiend, who, saving your reverence, is the devil himself: certainly, the Jew is the very devil incarnation, and, in my conscience, my conscience is but a kind of hard conscience, to offer to counsel me to stay with the Jew: the fiend gives the more friendly counsel! I will run ; fiend, my heels are at your commander ent, I will run. Going, R.
Gob. [Without, R.] Maste), young man, you, I pray you, which is the way to master Jew's ?
Laun. Oh, heavens, this is my true begotten father! who, being more than sand-blind, high-gravel blind, knows be not :--) will +ry conclusions with him.
Enter Old GOBBO, R., with a basket. Gob. (R.) Master, young gentleman, I pray you, which is the way to master Jew's ?
Laun. (r.) Turn up on your right hand, at the next turning, but, at the next turning of all, on your left : mar. ry, at the very next turning, turn of no hand, but turn down indirectly to the Jew's house.
Gob. 'Twill be a hard way to hit. Can you tell me whether one Launcelot, that dwells with him, dwell with him, or no?
Laun. Talk you of young master Launcelot? (Aside.) ] Mark me now: now will I raise the waters :of young master Launcelot ?
Gob. No master, sir, but a poor man's son ; his father, though I say it, is an honest, exceeding poor man, and, Heaven be thanked, well to live.
Laun. Well, let his father be what he will, we talk of young master Launcelot.
Gob. Of Launcelot, an't please your mastership.
Laun. Ergo, master Launcelot;_talk not of master Launcelot, father; for the young gentleman (according to fates and destinies, and such odd sayings, the sisters three, and such branches of learning,) is, indeed, deceased; or, as you would say, in plain terms, gone to heaven.
Gob. Marry, Heaven forbid ! the boy was the very staff of my age, my very prop. Laun. Do I look like a cudgel, or a hovel-post, a staff, ?-Do you
father? Gob. Alack the day, I know you not, young gentleman: but, I pray you, tell me, is my boy (Heaven rest his soul!) alive or dead ?
Laun. Do you not know me, father?
Laun. Nay, indeed, if you had your eyes, you might fail of the knowing me: it is a wise father that knows his own child. Well, old man, I will tell you news of your son. (Fails on his knees.] 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:
or a prop
pun. (Rises.] Pray you, let's have no more fooling
wife, is my mother.
my ribs. Father, I am glad you are come; give me ur present to one master Bassanio, who, indeed, gives re new liveries; if I serve not him, I will run as far as eaven has any ground :-Oh, rare fortune! here comes e man ;-to him, father; for I am a Jew if I serve the ew any longer.
Enter BASSANIO, with LEONARDO and STEPHANO, R. Bass. You may do so :-See these letters delivered ; put the liveries to making: and desire Gratiano to come non to my lodging.
Exit Stephano, R.
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
Laun. Indeed, the short and the long is, I serve the Jew; and I have a desire, as my fat'ier shall specify
Gib. His master and he (saving your worship’s reve. rence,) are scarce cater-cousins.
Laun. To be brief, the very truth is, that the Jew have ing done me wrong, doth cause me, as my father, being I hope, an old man, shall fructify unto you,
Gob. I have here a dish of doves, that I would bestow upon your worship; and my suit is Laun. In very brics, the suit is impertinent to myself
, as your worship 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?
Bass. I know thee well, thou hast obtained thy suit :
Laun. The old proverb is very well parted between my master Shylock and you, sir; you have the grace of Heaven, 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. To Leonardo.] Give him a livery More guarded than his fellows'; see it done.
[Bassanio retires up the Stage with Leonardo. Laun. Father, in :-[Crosses to l.] I cannot get a ser vice, 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 have 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 peri) with my life with the edge of a feather bed; here are sim ple '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 eye.
[Exeunt Launcelot and Old Gobbo, 1., D.F. Bass. (Advancing with Leon.]. I pray thee, good Leo
pardo, think on this; These things being bought, and orderly bestowed, Return in haste, for I do feast to-night
I must go
Leonardo going.-Exit Bassanio, L.
Enter GRATIANO, R. 'ra. Wbre is your master ? veon. Yonder, sir, he walks.
(Exit, i. Fra. Siguior Bassanio.
Re-enter BASSANIO, L.
with Imont. Bass. Why, then, you must but hear thee, Gratiano; Lou art too wild, too rude, and bold of voice ; its that become thee happily enough, ad in such eyes as ours appear not faults; it where thou art not known, why, there they show mething too liberal;—pray thee, take pain allay with some cold drops of modesty Ely skipping spirit ; lest, through thy wild behaviour, be misconstrued in the place I go to, nd lose my hopes. Gra. Signior Bassanio, hear me:
I do not put on a sober habit,
hus with my hat, and sigh, and say, Amen ;
Gra. Nay, but I bar to-night; you shall not gage me By what we do to-night.
Bass. No, that were pity;
Gra. And I must to Lorenz ), and the rest;