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answered Ruggieri, from a desire of being enriched, but from your not having given the smallest testimony to my deserts in your service: nevertheless your excuse is valid, and I am ready to see the proof you mention, though I can easily believe you without it. The king conducted him to a hall, where he had already commanded two large caskets, shut close, to be placed: and before a large company told Ruggieri, that in one of them was contained his crown, sceptre, and all his jewels, and that the other was full of earth: choose which of them you like best, and then you will see that it is not I, but your fortune that has been ungrateful. Ruggieri chose one. It was found to be the casket full of earth. The king said to him with a smile, Now you may see, Ruggieri, that what I told you of Fortune is true; but for your sake, I will oppose her with all my strength. You have no intention, I am certain, to live in Spain; therefore I will offer you no preferment here, but that casket which Fortune denied you, shall be yours in despite of her: carry it with you into your own country, shew it to your friends, and neighbours, as my gift to you; and you have my permission to boast, that it is a reward of your virtues.

JOHNSON.

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DUKE of Venice.
Prince of Morocco, ls,
Prince of Arragon, J uit

*Suitors to Portia.
Antonio, the Merchant of Venice:
BassANIO, his Friend.
SALANIO, 2
SALARINO, S Friends to Antonio and Bassanio.
GRATIANO,
Lorenzo, in love with Jessica.
SHYLOCK, a Jew :
Tural, a Jew, his Friend.
LAUNCELOT Gobbo, a Clown, Servant to Shylock.
Old GOBBO, Father to Launcelot.
SALERIO, a Messenger from Venice.
LEONARDO, Servant to Bassanio.

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Magnificoes of Venice, Officers of the Court of Jus

tice, Jailer, Servants, and other Attendants.

SCENE, partly at Venice, and partly at Belmont,

the Seat of Portia, on the Continent..

MERCHANT OF VENICE.

ACT I. SCENE I.

Venice.

A Street.

Enter ANTONIO, SALARINO, and SALANIO.

Antonio. In sooth, I know not why I am so sad;
It wearies me; you say it wearies you;
But how I caught it, found it, or came by it,
What stuff 'tis made of, whereof it is born,
I am to learn;
And such a want-wit sadness makes of me,
That I have much ado to know myself.

Salar. Your mind is tossing on the ocean;
There, where your argosies' with portly sail, -
Like signiors and rich burghers of the flood,
Or as it were the pageants of the sea,-
Do overpeer the petty traffickers,
That curt'sy to them, do them reverence,
As they fly by them with their woven wings.

Salan. Believe me, sir, had I such venture forth, The better part of my affections would

Be with my hopes abroad. I should be still
Plucking the grass?, to know where sits the wind;
Peering in maps, for ports, and piers, and roads ;
And every object, that might make me fear
Misfortunes to my ventures, out of doubt,
Would make me sad.
Salar.

My wind, cooling my broth,
Would blow me to an ague, when I thought
What harm a wind too great might do at sea.
I should not see the sandy hour-glass run,
But I should think of shallows and of flats;
And see my wealthy Andrew dock'd in sand,
Vailing her high-top lower than her ribs 3,
To kiss her burial. Should I go to church,
And see the holy edifice of stone,
And not bethink me straight of dangerous rocks?
Which touching but my gentle vessel's side,
Would scatter all her spices on the stream;
Enrobe the roaring waters with my silks;
And, in a word, but even now worth this,
And now worth nothing ? Shall I have the thought
To think on this; and shall I lack the thought,
That such a thing, bechanc'd, would make me sad?
But, tell not me; I know, Antonio
Is sad to think upon his merchandize.

Ant. Believe me, no: I thank my fortune for it, My ventures are not in one bottom trusted, Nor to one place; nor is my whole estate Upon the fortune of this present year: Therefore, my merchandize makes me not sad.

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