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And all for use of that which is mine own.
Well then, it now appears, you need my help:
Go to then; you come to me, and you say,
Shylock, we would have monies; You say so;
You, that did void your rheum upon my beard,
And foot me as you spurn a stranger cur
Over your threshold; monies is your suit.
What should I say to you? Should I not say,
Hath a dog money? Is it possible,

A cur can lend three thousand ducats? or
Shall I bend low, and in a bondman's key,
With 'bated breath, and whispering humbleness,
Say this,--

Fair sir, you spit on me on Wednesday last;
You spurn'd me such a day; another time
You call'd me-dog; and for these courtesies
I'll lend you thus much monies.

ANT. I am as like to call thee so again,
To spit on thee again, to spurn thee too.
If thou wilt lend this money, lend it not
As to thy friends; (for when did friendship take
A breed for barren metal of his friend 1?)


9 And SPIT] The old copies always read spet, which spelling is followed by Milton:


the womb

"Of Stygian darkness spets her thickest gloom."


1 A BREED for BARREN metal of his friend?] A breed, that is, interest money bred from the principal. By the epithet barren, the author would instruct us in the argument on which the advocates against usury went, which is this; that money is a barren thing, and cannot, like corn and cattle, multiply itself. And to set off the absurdity of this kind of usury, he put breed and barren in opposition. WARBURTON.

Dr. Warburton very truly interprets this passage. Old Meres says, "Usurie and encrease by gold and silver is unlawful, because against nature; nature hath made them sterill and barren, usurie makes them procreative." FARMER.

The honour of starting this conceit belongs to Aristotle. See De Repub. lib. i. HOLT WHITE.

But lend it rather to thine enemy;

Who if he break, thou may'st with better face
Exact the penalty *.

Why, look you, how you storm!
I would be friends with you, and have your love,
Forget the shames that you have stain'd me with,
Supply your present wants, and take no doit
Of usance for my monies, and you'll not hear me :
This is kind I offer.

ANT. This were kindness.
This kindness will I show:-
Go with me to a notary, seal me there
Your single bond; and, in a merry sport,
you repay me not on such a day,
In such a place, such sum, or sums, as are
Express'd in the condition, let the forfeit
Be nominated for an equal pound
Of your fair flesh, to be cut off and taken
In what part of your body pleaseth me.

ANT. Content, in faith; I'll seal to such a bond,
And say, there is much kindness in the Jew.

BASS. You shall not seal to such a bond for me,
I'll rather dwell in my necessity 2.

ANT. Why, fear not, man; I will not forfeit it;
Within these two months, that's a month before
This bond expires, I do expect return
Of thrice three times the value of this bond.

SHY. Ofather Abraham, what these Christians are;
Whose own hard dealings teaches them suspect
The thoughts of others! Pray you, tell me this;
If he should break his day, what should I gain

*First folio, penalties.

First folio, it pleaseth.

Thus both the quarto printed by Roberts, and that by Heyes, in 1600. The folio has a breed of. MALONE.


mean the same as to continue. habitation and continuance.

DWELL in my necessity.] To dwell seems in this place to

To abide has both the senses of

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By the exaction of the forfeiture?

A pound of man's flesh, taken from a man,
Is not so estimable, profitable neither,
As flesh of muttons, beefs, or goats, I say,
To buy his favour, I extend this friendship:
If he will take it, so; if not, adieu;

And, for my love, I pray you, wrong me not.

ANT. Yes, Shylock, I will seal unto this bond. SHY. Then meet me forthwith at the notary's; Give him direction for this merry bond, And I will go and purse the ducats straight; See to my house, left in the fearful guard Of an unthrifty knave; and presently I will be with you.



ANT. Hie thee, gentle Jew. This Hebrew will turn Christian; he grows kind *. BASS. I like not fair terms, and a villain's mind. ANT. Come on; in this there can be no dismay, My ships come home a month before the day.


* First folio and quartos, I'le.

† Quarto R. so kind.

3 - left in the FEARFUL GUARD, &c.] Fearful guard, is a guard that is not to be trusted, but gives cause of fear. To fear was anciently to give as well as feel terrours. JOHNSON.

So, in King Henry IV. Part I.:


"A mighty and a fearful head they are." STEEvens. 4 I like not fair terms,] Kind words, good language.


Fair terms, mean, I think, a fair offer. ROBERTS.



Belmont. A Room in Portia's House.

Flourish of Cornets. Enter the Prince of Morocco3, and his Train; Portia, Nerissa, and other of her Attendants.

MOR. Mislike me not for my complexion,
The shadowed livery of the burnish'd sun,
To whom I am a neighbour, and near bred.
Bring me the fairest creature northward born,
Where Phoebus' fire scarce thaws the icicles,
And let us make incision for your love,

To prove whose blood is reddest, his, or mine".
I tell thee, lady, this aspect of mine

Hath fear'd the valiant"; by my love, I swear,
The best regarded virgins of our clime

Have lov'd it too: I would not change this hue,
Except to steal your thoughts, my gentle queen.
POR. In terms of choice I am not solely led
By nice direction of a maiden's eyes:

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the Prince of Morocco,] The old stage direction is "Enter Morochus a tawnie Moore, all in white, and three or foure followers accordingly," &c. STEEVENS.

6 To prove whose blood is reddest, his, or mine.] To understand how the tawny prince, whose savage dignity is very well supported, means to recommend himself by this challenge, it must be remembered that red blood is a traditionary sign of courage : Thus Macbeth calls one of his frighted soldiers, a lily-liver'd boy; again, in this play, Cowards are said to have livers as white as milk; and an effeminate and timorous man is termed a milksop. JOHNSON.

It is customary in the east for lovers to testify the violence of their passion by cutting themselves in the sight of their mistresses. See Habits du Levant, pl. 43, and Picart's Religious Ceremonies, vol. vii. p. 111. HARRIS.

7 Hath FEAR'D the valiant;] i. e. terrify'd. To fear is often used by our old writers, in this sense. So, in K. Henry VI. P. III. :

"For Warwick was a bug that fear'd us all." STEEVENS.

Besides, the lottery of my destiny

Bars me the right of voluntary choosing:
But, if my father had not scanted me,

And hedg'd me by his wit, to yield myself
His wife, who wins me by that means I told you,
Yourself, renowned prince, then stood as fair,
As any comer I have look'd on yet,

For my affection.


Even for that I thank you;

Therefore, I pray you, lead me to the caskets,
To try my fortune. By this scimitar,-
That slew the Sophy, and a Persian prince,
That won three fields of Sultan Solyman,-
I would out-stare* the sternest eyes that look,
Out-brave the heart most daring on the earth,
Pluck the young sucking cubs from the she bear,
Yea, mock the lion when he roars for prey,
To win thee, lady: But, alas the while!
If Hercules, and Lichas, play at dice
Which is the better man, the greater throw
May turn by fortune from the weaker hand:
So is Alcides beaten by his page1;

First folio and quarto H. ore-stare.

And hedg'd me by his wIT,] I suppose we may safely readand hedg'd me by his will. Confined me by his will. JOHNSON. As the ancient signification of wit, was sagacity, or power of mind, I have not displaced the original reading. See our author, passim. STEEVENS.

9 That slew the Sophy, &c.] Shakspeare seldom escapes well when he is entangled with geography. The Prince of Morocco must have travelled far to kill the Sophy of Persia. JOHNSON.

It were well, if Shakspeare had never entangled himself with geography worse than in the present case. If the Prince of Mo

rocco be supposed to have served in the army of Sultan Solyman (the second, for instance,) I see no geographical objection to his having killed the Sophi of Persia. See D'Herbelot in Solyman Ben Selim. TYRWHITT.

So is Alcides beaten by his PAGE ;] The ancient copies read -his rage. STEEVENS.

Though the whole set of editions concur in this reading, it is

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