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  • Title: The Merchant of Venice (Quarto 1, 1600)
  • Editor: Janelle Jenstad

  • Copyright Janelle Jenstad. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Janelle Jenstad
    Not Peer Reviewed

    The Merchant of Venice (Quarto 1, 1600)

    The comciall Historie of
    Come heere to day?
    Salerio. My Lord, heere stayes without
    1940a messenger with letters from the Doctor,
    new come from Padua?
    Duke. Bring vs the letters? call the Messenger?
    Bass. Good cheere Anthonio? what man, courage yet:
    The Iew shall haue my flesh, blood, bones and all,
    1945ere thou shalt loose for me one drop of blood?
    Antho. I am a tainted vveather of the flocke,
    meetest for death, the weakest kind of fruite
    drops earliest to the ground, and so let me;
    You cannot better be imployd Bassanio,
    1950then to liue still and write mine Epitaph?
    Enter Nerrissa.
    Duke. Came you from Padua from Bellario?
    Ner. From both? my L. Bellario greetes your grace?
    Bass. Why doost thou whet thy knife so earnestly?
    1955Iewe. To cut the forfaiture from that bankrout there?
    Gratia. Not on thy soule: but on thy soule harsh Iew
    thou makst thy knife keene: but no mettell can,
    no, not the hangmans axe beare halfe the keenenesse
    of thy sharpe enuie: can no prayers pearce thee?
    1960Iewe. No, none that thou hast wit enough to make.
    Gratia. O be thou damnd, inexecrable dogge,
    And for thy life let iustice be accusd;
    Thou almost mak'st me wauer in my faith,
    to hold opinion with Pythagoras,
    1965that soules of Animalls infuse themselues
    into the trunks of men: Thy currish spirit
    gouernd a Woolfe, who hangd for humaine slaughter
    euen from the gallowes did his fell soule fleete,
    and whilest thou layest in thy vnhallowed dam;
    1970infusd it selfe in thee: for thy desires
    are vvoluish, bloody, staru'd, and rauenous.
    Iewe. Till thou canst raile the seale from off my bond,
    Thou but offendst thy lungs to speake so loud:
    Repaire thy wit good youth, or it will fall