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beseech you;

Talk
you
of

young master Launce lot?

Gob. Of Launcelot, an't please your mastership.

Laun. Ergo, master Launcelot; talk not of master Launcelot, father; for the young gentleman (according to fates and destinies, and such odd sayings, the sisters three, and such branches of learning,) is, indeed, deceased; or, as you would say, in plain terms, gone to heaven.

Gob. Marry, God forbid! the boy was the very staff of my age, my very prop.

Laun. Do I look like a cudgel, or a hovel-post, a staff, or a prop ?-Do you know me, father?

Gob. Alack the day, I know you not, young gen. tleman : but, I pray you, tell me, is my boy, (God rest his soul!) alive, or dead ?

Laun. Do you not know me, father?
Gob. Alack, sir, I am sand-blind, I know you not.

Laun. Nay, indeed, if you had your eyes, you might fail of the knowing me: it is a wise father, that knows his own child. Well, old man, I will tell you news of your son: Give me your blessing: truth will come to light; murder cannot be hid long, a man's son may; but, in the end, truth will out.

Gob. Pray you, sir, stand up; I am sure, you are not Launcelot, my boy.

Laun. Pray you, let's have no more fooling about it, but give me your blessing; I am Launcelot, your boy that was, your son that is, your child that shall be.

Gob. I cannot think, you are my son.
Laun. I know not what I shall think of that: but

1

I am Launcelot, the Jew's man; and, I am sure, Margery, your wife, is my mother.

Gob. Her name is Margery, indeed: I'll be sworn, if thou be Launcelot, thou art mine own flesh and blood. Lord worshipp'd might he be! what a beard hast thou got! thou hast got more hair on thy chin, than Dobbin my thill-horse' has on his tail.

Laun. It should seem then, that Dobbin's tail grows backward; I am sure he had more hair on his tail, than I have on my face, when I last saw him.

Gob. Lord, how art thou changed! How dost thou and thy master agree? I have brought him a present; How 'gree you now?

Laun, Well, well; but, for mine own part, as I have set up my rest to run away, so I will not rest till I have run some ground: my master's a very Jew: Give him a present! give him a halter: I am famish'd in his service; you may tell every finger I have with my ribs. Father, I am glad you are come ; give me your present to one master Bassanio, who, indeed, gives rare new liveries; if I serve not him, I will run as far as God has any ground. rare fortune! here comes the man; to him, father; for I am a Jew, if I serve the Jew any longer.

Enter BASSANIO, with LEONARDO, and other

Followers.

Bass. You may do so;—but let it be so hasted, that supper be ready at the farthest by five of the

9 Shaft-horse.

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clock: See these letters deliver'd; put the liveries to making; and desire Gratiano to come anon to my lodging.

[Exit a Servant. Laun. To him, father. Gob. God bless your worship! Bass. Gramercy; Would'st thou aught with me? Gob. Here's my son, sir, a poor boy,

Laun. Not a poor boy, sir, but the rich Jew's man; that would, sir, as my father shall specify,

Gob. He hath a great infection, sir,, as one would say, to serve

Laun. Indeed, the short and the long is, I serve the Jew, and I have a desire, as my father shall specify,

Gob. His master and he, (saving your worship's reverence,) are scarce cater-cousins :

Laun. To be brief, the very truth is, that the Jew having done me wrong, doth cause me, as my father, being I hope an old man, shall frutify unto you,

Gob. I have here a dish of doves, that I would bestow upon your worship, and my suit is,

Laun. In very brief, the suit is impertinent to myself, as your worship shall know by this honest old man; and, though I say it, though old man, yet, poor man, my father.

Bass. One speak for both ;-What would you?
Laun. Serve you, sir.
Gob. This is the very defect of the matter, sir.
Bass. I know thee well, thou hast obtain'd thy

suit:
Shylock, thy master, spoke with me this day,
And hath preferr'd thee, if it be preferment,

To leave a rich Jew's service, to become
The follower of so poor a gentleman.

Laun. The old proverb is very well parted between my master Shylock and you, sir; you have the grace of God, sir, and he hath enough.

Bass. Thou speak'st it well: Go, father with thy

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Take leave of thy old master, and enquire
My lodging out:-Give him a livery

[To his Followers. More guarded' than his fellows': See it done.

Laun. Father, in :-I cannot get a service, no;I have ne'er a tongue in my head. --Well; (Looking on his palm.] if any man in Italy have a fairer table, 2 which doth offer to swear upon a book.

I shall have good fortune; Go to, here's a simple line of life! here's a small trifle of wives: Alas, fifteen wives is nothing; eleven widows, and nine maids, is a simple coming-in for one man: and then, to 'scape drowning thrice; and to be in peril of my life with the edge of a feather-bed; -- here are simple 'scapes! Well, if fortune be a woman, she's a good wench for this gear.-Father, come; I'll take my leave of the Jew in the twinkling of an eye.

[Exeunt LAUNCELOT and old GOBBO. Bass. I pray thee, good Leonardo, think on this; These things being bought, and orderly bestow'd, Return in haste, for I do feast to-night My best-esteem'd acquaintance; hie thee, go.

Leon. My best endeavours shall be done herein.

I Ornamented.
? The palm of the hand extended,

Enter GRATIANO.

Gra. Where is your master ?
Leon.

Yonder, sir, he walks.

[Exit LEONARDO. Gra. Signior Bassanio, Bass. Gratiano ! Gra. I have a suit to you. Bass..

You have obtain'd it. Gra. You must not deny me; I must go with you to Belmont. Bass. Why, then you must; -- But hear thee,

Gratiano; Thou art too wild, too rude, and bold of voice; Parts, that become thee happily enough, And in such eyes as ours appear not faults ; But where thou art not known, why, there they show Something too liberal; 3--pray thee, take pain To allay with some cold drops of modesty Thy skipping spirit; lest, through thy wild behaviour, I be misconstrued in the place I go to, And lose my hopes. Gra.

Signior Bassanio, hear me: If I do not put on a sober habit, Talk with respect, and swear but now and then, Wear prayer-books in my pocket, look demurely; Nay more, while grace is saying, hood mine eyes Thus with my hat, and sigh, and say, amen; Use all the observance of civility, Like one well studied in a sad ostent 4

3 Gross, licentious.
4 Show of staid and serious demeanour,

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