Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Janelle Jenstad
Not Peer Reviewed

The Merchant of Venice (Quarto 1, 1600)


The comicall Historie of
Baltha. Madam, I goe with all conuenient speede.
Portia Come on Nerrissa, I haue worke in hand
That you yet know not of; weele see our husbands
before they thinke of vs?
1720Nerrissa. Shall they see vs?
Portia. They shall Nerrissa: but in such a habite,
that they shall thinke we are accomplished
vvith that we lacke; Ile hold thee any wager
vvhen we are both accoutered like young men,
1725ile proue the prettier fellow of the two,
and weare my dagger with the brauer grace,
and speake betweene the change of man and boy,
vvith a reede voyce, and turne two minsing steps
into a manly stride; and speake of frayes
1730like a fine bragging youth: and tell quaint lyes
how honorable Ladies sought my loue,
vvhich I denying, they fell sicke and dyed.
I could not doe withall: then ile repent,
and wish for all that, that I had not killd them;
1735And twenty of these punie lies ile tell,
that men shall sweare I haue discontinued schoole
aboue a twelue-moneth: I haue within my minde
a thousand raw tricks of these bragging Iacks,
vvhich I will practise.
1740Nerriss. Why, shall we turne to men?
Portia. Fie, what a question's that,
if thou wert nere a lewd interpreter:
But come, ile tell thee all my whole deuice
vvhen I am in my coach, which stayes for vs
1745at the Parke gate; and therefore hast away,
for we must measure twenty miles to day.
Exeunt.
Enter Clowne and Iessica.
Clowne. Yes truly, for looke you, the sinnes of the Father are to
be laid vpon the children, therefore I promise you, I feare you, I
1750was alwaies plaine with you, and so now I speake my agitation of
the matter: therefore be a good chere, for truly I thinke you are
damnd, there is but one hope in it that can doe you any good, and
that