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as you

in plain

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, would

say, terms, gone to heaven.

Gob. Marry, God 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, or a prop



me, father? Gob. Alack the day, I know you not, young gentleman! but, I pray you, tell me, is my boy (God rest his soul !) alive or dead ?

Laun. Do you not know me, father?

Gob. Alack, sir, I am sand-blind; not.

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. 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,

I know you

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 worshipped might he be ! what a beard hast thou got! Thou hast got more hair on thy chin, than Dobbin my phill-horse 1 has on his tail.

Laun. It should seem then, that Dobbin's tail grows backward ; I am sure, he had more hair on his tail, than I have on 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 'gree 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 famished 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.-0

rare fortune! here comes the man :-to him, father ; for I am a Jew, if I serve the Jew any longer.

· For thill-borse, i. e. shaft-horse.

: Am firmly resolved.

Enter BASSANIO, with LEONARDO, and other

followers. Bas. 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 Servant. Laun. To him, father. Gob. God bless your worship! Bas. Gramercy!1 Wouldst 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 I 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 futher, being I hope an old man, shall frutify unto you,

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

Laun. In very brief, the suit is impertinent to

I Contraction for grant me mercy!'
? A corruption of quatre-cousins, distant relatives.



myself, as your lordship shall know by this honest old man ; and, though I say it, though old man, yet, poor man, my father.

Bas. One speak for both. What would you ?
Laun. Serve you, sir.
Gob. This is the very defect of the matter, sir.
Bas. 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 my master Shylock and you, sir ; you have the grace of God, sir, and he hath enough.

Bas. 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 1 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, 2 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

1 Ornamented.
2 Table is the palm of the hand extended.

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 eye.

[Exeunt Launcelot and old Gobbo. Bas. 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.

Leo. My best endeavors shall be done herein.


Gra. Where is your master ?

Yonder, sir, he walks.

[Exit Leonardo. Gra. Signior Bassanio, Bas. Gratiano ! Gra. I have a suit to you. Bas.

You have obtain'd it. Gra. You must not deny me; I must go with you to Belmont. Bas. 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


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