APPENDIX I THE TRIAL SCENE [4.1]
[4.1] Enter the DUKE, the MAGNIFICOES,
ANTONIO, BASSANIO, SALERIO, and GRATIANO.
What, is Antonio here?
Ready, so please your grace.
I am sorry for thee. Thou art come to answer
A stony adversary, an inhuman wretch
Uncapable of pity, void and empty 5
From any dram of mercy.
I have heard
Your Grace hath tane great pains to qualify
His rigorous course. But since he stands obdùrate,
And that no lawful means can carry me 10
Out of his envy’s reach, I do oppose
My patience to his fury, and am armed
To suffer with a quietness of spirit
The very tyranny and rage of his.
Go one, and call the Jew into the Court. 15
He is ready at the door. He comes, my Lord.
Enter SHYLOCK the JEW
Make room, and let him stand before our face.
Shylock, the world thinks, and I think so too,
That thou but leadest this fashion of thy malice
To the last hour of act. And then ’tis thought 20
Thou’lt show thy mercy and remorse more strange
Than is thy strange apparent cruelty.
And where thou now exact’st the penalty,
Which is a pound of this poor Merchant’s flesh,
Thou wilt not only loose the forfeiture, 25
But, touched with human gentleness and love,
Forgive a moiety of the principal,
Glancing an eye of pity on his losses
That have of late so huddled on his back,
Enow to press a royal Merchant down 30
And pluck commiseration of his state
From brassy bosoms and rough hearts of flints,
From stubborn Turks and Tartars never trained
To offices of tender courtesy.
We all expect a gentle answer, Jew. 35
I have possessed your Grace of what I purpose.
And by our holy Sabbath have I sworn
To have the due and forfeit of my bond.
If you deny it, let the danger light
Upon your Charter and your City’s freedom! 40
You’ll ask me why I rather choose to have
A weight of carrion flesh than to receive
Three thousand Ducats.
I’ll not answer that,
But say it is my humor. 45
Is it answered?
What if my house be troubled with a Rat,
And I be pleased to give ten thousand Ducats
To have it bain’d?
What, are you answered yet? 50
Some men there are love not a gaping Pig.
Some that are mad if they behold a Cat.
And others, when the bagpipe sings i’the nose,
Cannot contain their urine for affection.
Masters of passion, sways it to the mood 55
Of what it likes or loathes.
Now for your answer.
As there is no firm reason to be rend’red
Why he cannot abide a gaping Pig,
Why he, a harmless necessary Cat, 60
Why he, a woolen bagpipe, but of force
Must yield to such inevitable shame
As to offend, himself being offended,
So can I give no reason, nor I will not,
More than a lodged hate and a certain loathing 65
I bear Antonio, that I follow thus
a losing suit against him.
Are you answered?
This is no answer, thou unfeeling man,
To excuse the current of thy cruelty. 70
I am not bound to please thee with my answer.
Do all men kill the things they do not love?
Hates any man the thing he would not kill?
Every offence is not a hate at first
What, wouldst thou have a Serpent sting thee twice? 75
I pray you think you question with the Jew.
You may as well go stand upon the beach
And bid the main flood bate his usual height.
Or even as well use question with the Wolf,
Why he hath made the Ewe bleat for the Lamb. 80
You may as well forbid the Mountain Pines
To wag their high tops and to make no noise
When they are fretted with the gusts of heaven.
You may as well do anything most hard,
As seek to soften that—than which what’s harder?— 85
His Jewish heart.
Therefore I do beseech you.
Make no more offers, use no farther means,
But with all brief and plain conveniency
Let me have judgement, and the Jew his will. 90
For thy three thousand Ducats here is six.
If every Ducat in six thousand Ducats
Were in six parts, and every part a Ducat,
I would not draw them. I would have my bond!
How shalt thou hope for mercy, rend’ring none? 95
What judgement shall I dread, doing no wrong?
You have among you many a purchased slave,
Which, like your Asses and your Dogs and Mules,
You use in abject and in slavish parts,
Because you bought them. 100
Shall I say to you,
‘Let them be free, marry them to your heirs!
Why sweat they under burthens? Let their beds
Be made as soft as yours. And let their palates
Be seasoned with such Viands.’ You will answer, 105
‘The slaves are ours.’
So do I answer you.
The pound of flesh which I demand of him
Is dearly bought. ’Tis mine. And I will have it!
If you deny me, fie upon your Law. 110
There is no force in the decrees of Venice.
I stand for judgement. Answer: shall I have it?
Upon my power I may dismiss this Court
Unless Bellario, a learnèd Doctor
Whom I have sent for to determine this, 115
Come here today.
My Lord, here stays without
A messenger with Letters from the Doctor,
New come from Padua.
Bring us the Letters. Call the messenger. 120
Good cheer Antonio! What man, courage yet.
The Jew shall have my flesh, blood, bones, and all,
Ere thou shalt lose for me one drop of blood.
I am a tainted Wether of the flock,
Meetest for death. The weakest kind of fruit 125
Drops earliest to the ground, and so let me.
You cannot better be employed, Bassanio,
Than to live still, and write mine Epitaph.
Enter NERISSA [Dressed as a lawyer’s clerk]
Came you from Padua from Bellario?
From both. 130
My Lord Bellario greets your Grace. [Presents a letter]
Why dost thou whet thy knife so earnestly?
To cut the forfeiture from that bankrupt there.
GRATIANO Not on thy sole but on thy soul, harsh Jew,
Thou mak’st thy knife keen. But no metal can, 135
No, not the hangman’s Axe, bear half the keeness
Of thy sharp envy. Can no prayers pierce thee?
No, none that thou hast wit enough to make
O be thou damned, inexecrable dog!
And for thy life let justice be accused. 140
Thou almost mak’st me waver in my faith
To hold opinion with Pythagoras—
That souls of Animals infuse themselves
Into the trunks of men.
Thy currish spirit 145
Governed a Wolf, who, hanged for human slaughter,
Even from the gallows did his fell soul fleet,
And whil’st thou lay’st in thy unhallowed dam,
Infused itself in thee. For thy desires
Are Wolvish, bloody, starved, and ravenous. 150
Till thou canst rail the seal from off my bond
Thou but offend’st thy Lungs to speak so loud.
Repair thy wit, good youth, or it will fall
To endless ruin. I stand here for Law.
This letter from Bellario doth commend 155
A young and learnèd Doctor in our Court.
Where is he?
He attendeth here hard by
To know your answer, whether you’ll admit him.
With all my heart. Some three or four of you 160
Go give him courteous conduct to this place.
[Exit three or four attendants]
Meantime the Court shall hear Bellario’s letter.
[Reads] ’Your Grace shall understand that at the receipt of your
letter I am very sick. But in the instant that your messenger came,
in loving visitation was with me a young Doctor of Rome. His name
I acquainted him with the cause in Controversy between the Jew
and Antonio the Merchant. We turned o’er many books together.
He is furnished with my opinion, which, bettered with his own
learning—the greatness whereof I cannot enough commend—
comes with him at my importunity to fill up your Grace’s
request in my stead.
I beseech you, let his lack of years be no impediment to let
him lack a reverend estimation, for I never knew so young a
body with so old a head. I leave him to your gracious
acceptance, whose trial shall better publish his commendation.’ 175
Enter PORTIA [Disguised as a Doctor of Civil Law] for BALTHAZAR
You hear the learnèd Bellario, what he writes.
And here (I take it) is the Doctor come.
Give me your hand. Came you from old Bellario?
I did, my Lord.
You are welcome. Take your place. 180
Are you acquainted with the difference
That holds this present question in the Court?
I am informèd throughly of the cause.
Which is the Merchant here? And which the Jew?
Antonio and old Shylock, both stand forth. 185
Is your name Shylock?
Shylock is my name.
Of a strange nature is the suit you follow.
Yet in such rule that the Venetian Law
Cannot impugn you as you do proceed. 190
[To Antonio] You stand within his danger, do you not?
Ay, so he says.
Do you confess the bond?
Then must the Jew be merciful. 195
On what compulsion must I? Tell me that.
The quality of mercy is not strained.
It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
Upon the place beneath.
It is twice blest. 200
It blesseth him that gives, and him that takes.
’Tis mightiest in the mightiest. It becomes
The thronèd Monarch better than his Crown.
His Scepter shows the force of temporal power—
The attribute to awe and majesty— 205
Wherein doth sit the dread and fear of Kings.
But mercy is above this sceptred sway.
It is enthronèd in the hearts of Kings.
It is an attribute to God himself.
And earthly power doth then show likest God’s 210
When mercy seasons justice.
Though Justice be thy plea, consider this:
That in the course of Justice none of us
Should see salvation. We do pray for mercy, 215
And that same prayer doth teach us all to render
The deeds of mercy.
I have spoke thus much
To mitigate the justice of thy plea,
Which, if thou follow, this strict court of Venice 220
Must needs give sentence ‘gainst the Merchant there.
My deeds upon my head! I crave the Law,
The penalty and forfeit of my bond.
Is he not able to discharge the money?
Yes, here I tender it for him in the Court. 225
Yea, twice the sum. If that will not suffice,
I will be bound to pay it ten times o’er,
On forfeit of my hands, my head, my heart.
If this will not suffice, it must appear
That malice bears down truth. 230
And I beseech you,
Wrest once the Law to your authority.
To do a great right, do a little wrong,
And curb this cruel devil of his will.
It must not be. There is no power in Venice 235
Can alter a decree establishèd.
’Twill be recorded for a President,
And many an error by the same example
Will rush into the state. It cannot be.
A Daniel come to judgement. Yea, a Daniel! 240
O wise young Judge, how do I honour thee!
I pray you, let me look upon the bond.
Here ’tis, most reverend Doctor. Here it is.
Shylock, there’s thrice thy money offered thee.
An oath, an oath, I have an oath in heaven! 245
Shall I lay perjury upon my soul?
No, not for Venice.
Why, this bond is forfeit.
And lawfully by this the Jew may claim
A pound of flesh, to be by him cut off 250
Nearest the Merchant’s heart. Be merciful.
Take thrice thy money. Bid me tear the bond.
When it is paid according to the tenure.
It doth appear you are a worthy Judge.
You know the Law. Your exposition 255
Hath been most sound.
I charge you by the Law,
Whereof you are a well-deserving pillar,
Proceed to judgement. By my soul I swear,
There is no power in the tongue of man 260
To alter me. I stay here on my bond.
Most heartily I do beseech the Court
To give the judgement.
Why then, thus it is:
You must prepare your bosom for his knife. 265
O noble Judge! O excellent young man!
For the intent and purpose of the Law
Hath full relation to the penalty,
Which here appeareth due upon the bond.
’Tis very true. O wise and upright Judge, 270
How much more elder art thou than thy looks.
Therefore lay bare your bosom.
Ay, his breast.
So says the bond, doth it not noble Judge?
‘Nearest his heart.’ Those are the very words. 275
It is so. Are there balance here to weigh the flesh?
I have them ready.
Have by some Surgeon, Shylock, on your charge,
To stop his wounds lest he should bleed to death.
It is not nominated in the bond.
It is not so expressed. But what of that? 280
‘Twere good you do so much for charity.
I cannot find it. ’Tis not in the bond.
Come, Merchant. Have you anything to say?
But little. I am armed and well prepared.
Give me your hand, Bassanio. Fare you well. 285
Grieve not that I am fallen to this for you.
For herein fortune shows herself more kind
Than is her custom.
It is still her use
To let the wretched man outlive his wealth, 290
To view with hollow eye and wrinkled brow
An age of poverty. From which ling’ring penance
Of such misery doth she cut me off.
Commend me to your honourable Wife.
Tell her the process of Antonio’s end. 295
Say how I loved you, speak me fair in death.
And when the tale is told, bid her be judge
Whether Bassanio had not once a love.
Repent not you that you shall lose your friend,
And he repents not that he pays your debt. 300
For if the Jew do cut but deep enough,
I’ll pay it instantly, with all my heart.
Antonio, I am married to a wife
Which is as dear to me as life itself.
But life itself, my wife, and all the world, 305
Are not with me esteemed above thy life.
I would lose all, ay, sacrifice them all
Here to this devil, to deliver you.
[Aside] Your wife would give you little thanks for that
If she were by to hear you make the offer. 310
I have a wife whom I protest I love.
I would she were in heaven, so she could
Entreat some power to change this currish Jew.
[Aside] ’Tis well you offer it behind her back.
The wish would make else an unquiet house. 315
These be the Christian husbands! I have a daughter.
Would any of the stock of Barabbas
Had been her husband, rather than a Christian.
We trifle time. I pray thee, pursue sentence.
A pound of that same Merchant’s flesh is thine. 320
The Court awards it, and the law doth give it.
Most rightful Judge!
And you must cut this flesh from off his breast.
The Law allows it, and the Court awards it.
Most learnèd Judge! A sentence! Come, prepare. 325
Tarry a little.
There is something else.
This bond doth give thee here no jot of blood.
The words expressly are ‘a pound of flesh.’
Then take thy bond, take thou thy pound of flesh. 330
But in the cutting it, if thou dost shed
One drop of Christian blood, thy lands and goods
Are by the laws of Venice confiscate
Unto the state of Venice.
O upright Judge! 335
Mark, Jew. O learnèd Judge!
Is that the law?
Thy self shalt see the Act.
For as thou urgest justice, be assured
Thou shalt have justice—more than thou desirest. 340
O learnèd Judge! Mark, Jew. A learnèd Judge.
I take this offer then. Pay the bond thrice,
And let the Christian go.
Here is the money.
Soft, the Jew shall have all justice. Soft, no haste.
He shall have nothing but the penalty. 350
O Jew, an upright Judge. A learnèd Judge!
Therefore prepare thee to cut off the flesh.
Shed thou no blood, nor cut thou less nor more
But just a pound of flesh. If thou tak’st more
Or less than a just pound, be it so much 355
As makes it light or heavy in the substance
Or the division of the twentieth part
Of one poor scruple—nay, if the scale do turn
But in the estimation of a hair—
Thou diest, and all thy goods are confiscate. 360
A second Daniel. A Daniel, Jew!
Now, infidel, I have thee on the hip.
Why doth the Jew pause? Take thy forfeiture.
Give me my principal, and let me go.
BASSANIO I have it ready for thee. Here it is. 365
He hath refused it in the open Court.
He shall have merely justice and his bond.
A Daniel, still say I. A second Daniel.
I thank thee, Jew, for teaching me that word.
Shall I not have barely my principal? 370
Thou shalt have nothing but the forfeiture,
To be taken so at thy peril, Jew.
Why then, the Devil give him good of it.
I’ll stay no longer question.
Tarry, Jew. 375
The Law hath yet another hold on you.
It is enacted in the Laws of Venice,
If it be proved against an Alien
That by direct or indirect attempts
He seek the life of any citizen, 380
The party ‘gainst the which he doth contrive
Shall seize one half his goods. The other half
Comes to the privy coffer of the State.
And the offender’s life lies in the mercy
Of the Duke only, gainst all other voice. 385
In which predicament I say thou stand’st.
For it appears by manifest proceeding
That indirectly, and directly too,
Thou hast contrived against the very life
Of the defendant. And thou hast incurred 390
The danger formerly by me rehearsed.
Down therefore, and beg mercy of the Duke.
Beg that thou mayst have leave to hang thyself.
And yet, thy wealth being forfeit to the State,
Thou hast not left the value of a cord. 395
Therefore thou must be hanged at the State’s charge.
That thou shalt see the difference of our spirit,
I pardon thee thy life before thou ask it.
For half thy wealth, it is Antonio’s.
The other half comes to the general state, 400
Which humbleness may drive unto a fine.
Ay, for the state, not for Antonio.
Nay, take my life and all, pardon not that.
You take my house when you do take the prop
That doth sustain my house. You take my life 405
When you do take the means whereby I live.
What mercy can you render him, Antonio?
A halter gratis. Nothing else, for God’s sake.
So please my Lord the Duke and all the Court.
To quit the fine for one half of his goods 410
I am content; so he will let me have
The other half in use, to render it
Upon his death unto the Gentleman
That lately stole his daughter.
Two things provided more. That for this favour 415
He presently become a Christian.
The other, that he do record a gift
Here in the Court of all he dies possessed
Unto his son Lorenzo and his daughter.
He shall do this, or else I do recant 420
The pardon that I late pronouncèd here.
Art thou contented, Jew? What dost thou say?
I am content.
Clerk, draw a deed of gift.
I pray you give me leave to go from hence. 425
I am not well. Send the deed after me,
And I will sign it.
Get thee gone, but do it.
In christ’ning thou shalt have two godfathers.
Had I been judge, thou shouldst have had ten more 430
To bring thee to the gallows, not to the font.
Sir, I entreat you with me home to dinner.
I humbly do desire your Grace of pardon.
I must away this night toward Padua,
And it is meet I presently set forth. 435
I am sorry that your leisure serves you not.
Antonio, gratify this gentleman.
For in my mind you are much bound to him.
Exit DUKE and his train
Most worthy gentleman, I and my friend
Have by your wisdom been this day acquitted 440
Of grievous penalties. In lieu whereof,
Three thousand Ducats due unto the Jew
We freely cope your courteous pains withal.
And stand indebted, over and above,
In love and service to you evermore. 445
He is well paid that is well satisfied.
And I, delivering you, am satisfied,
And therein do account myself well paid.
My mind was never yet more mercenary.
I pray you know me when we meet again. 450
I wish you well, and so I take my leave.
Dear sir, of force I must attempt you further.
Take some remembrance of us as a tribute,
Not as fee. Grant me two things, I pray you:
Not to deny me, and to pardon me. 455
You press me far, and therefore I will yield.
[To Antonio] Give me your gloves. I’ll wear them for your sake.
[To Bassanio] And for your love I’ll take this ring from you—
Do not draw back your hand, I’ll take no more—
And you in love shall not deny me this. 460
This ring good sir, alas, it is a trifle.
I will not shame myself to give you this.
I will have nothing else but only this.
And now methinks I have a mind to it.
There’s more depends on this than on the value. 465
The dearest ring in Venice will I give you,
And find it out by proclamation.
Only for this I pray you pardon me.
I see, sir, you are liberal in offers.
You taught me first to beg, and now methinks 470
You teach me how a beggar should be answered.
Good sir, this ring was given me by my wife.
And when she put it on, she made me vow
That I should neither sell, nor give, nor lose it.
That ‘scuse serves many men to save their gifts. 475
And if your wife be not a mad woman,
And know how well I have deserved this ring,
She would not hold out enemy for ever
For giving it to me. Well, peace be with you.
Exeunt PORTIA and NERISSA
My Lord Bassanio, let him have the ring. 480
Let his deservings and my love withal
Be valued ‘gainst your wife’s commandement.
Go, Gratiano. Run and overtake him.
Give him the ring, and bring him if thou canst
Unto Antonio’s house. Away! Make haste. 485
Come, you and I will thither presently.
And in the morning early will we both
Fly toward Belmont. Come, Antonio.