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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    Not Peer Reviewed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 Merchant of Venice.
    140An. I pray you good Bassanio let me know it,
    And if it stand as you your selfe still doe,
    vvithin the eye of honour, be assurd
    My purse, my person, my extreamest meanes
    Lie all vnlockt to your occasions.
    145Bass. In my schoole dayes, when I had lost one shaft,
    I shot his fellow of the selfe same flight
    The selfe same way, with more aduised watch
    To finde the other forth, and by aduenturing both,
    I oft found both: I vrge this child-hood proofe
    150Because what followes is pure innocence.
    I owe you much, and like a wilfull youth
    That which I owe is lost, but if you please
    To shoote another arrow that selfe way
    vvhich you did shoote the first, I doe not doubt,
    155As I will watch the ayme or to find both,
    Or bring your latter hazzard bake againe,
    And thankfully rest debter for the first.
    An. You know me well, and heerein spend but time
    To wind about my loue with circumstance,
    160And out of doubt you doe me now more wrong
    In making question of my vttermost
    Then if you had made wast of all I haue:
    Then doe but say to me what I should doe
    That in your knowledge may by me be done,
    165And I am prest vnto it: therefore speake.
    Bass. In Belmont is a Lady richly left,
    And she is faire, and fairer then that word,
    Of wondrous vertues, sometimes from her eyes
    I did receaue faire speechlesse messages:
    170Her name is Portia, nothing vndervallewd
    To Catos daughter, Brutus Portia,
    Nor is the wide world ignorant of her worth,
    For the foure winds blow in from euery coast
    Renowned sutors, and her sunny locks
    175Hang on her temples like a golden fleece,
    vvhich makes her seat of Belmont Cholchos strond,