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My patience to his fury; and am arm'd
our face. Shylock, the world thinks, and I think so
too, That thou but lead'st this fashion of thy
malice To the last hour of act; and then, 'tis
thought, Thou'lt shew thy mercy, and remorse,2 more.
strange Than is thy strange apparent cruelty :3
Revenge against Murder, 1621 : « “ looks on her his (wife) with affection, but envy." p. 109, edit. 1679. So, also (as Mr. Malone ob serves) in Lazarus Pyot's Orator, &c. -they “ had slaine him for verie envie." STEEVENS.
and remorse,] i. e. pity. So, in Othello : “ And to obey shall be in me remorse.” Idem. -apparent cruelty :)
That is, seeming; not real. JOHNSON.
And, where 4 thou now exact’st the penalty, (Which is a pound of this poor merchant's
flesh) Thou wilt not only lose the forfeiture, But touch'd with human gentlenes 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; Enough to press a royal merchant down,5 And pluck commiseration of his state From brassy bosoms, and rough hearts of
flint, From stubborn Turks, and Tartars, never
train'd To offices of tender courtesy. We all expect a gentle answer, Jew. Shy. I have possess’d your grace of what I purpose;
-where] For whereas. JOHNSON. 5 Enough to press a royal merchant down,] We are not to imagine the word royal to be only a ranting sounding epithet. It is used with great propriety, and shews the poet well acquainted with the history of the people whom he here brings upon the stage. For when the French and the Venetians, in the beginning of the thirteenth century, had won Constantinople, the French under the emperor Henry, endeavoured to extend their conquests into the provinces of the Grecian empire on the Terra Firma; while the Venetians; who were master of the sea, gave
And by our holy sabbath have I sworn,
liberty to any subjects of the republic, who would fit out vessels, to make themselves masters of the isles of the Archipelago, and other maritime places ; and to enjoy their conquests in sovereignty; only doing homage to the republic for their several prin cipalities. By virtue of this licence, the Sanudos, the Justiniani, the Grimaldi, the Summaripos, and others, all Venetian merchants, erected principalities in several places of the Archipelago, (which their descendants enjoyed for many generations) and thereby became truly and properly royal merchants ; which indeed was the title generally given them all over Europe. Hence, the most eminent of our own merchants (while public spirit resided amongst them, and before it was aped by faction) were called royal merchants. WARBURTON.
This epithet was in our poet's time more striking and better understood, because Gresham was then commonly dignified with the title of the royal merchant. JOHNSON.
Even the pulpit did not disdain the use of this phrase. I have now before me “ The Merchant
Royal, a Sermon, preached at Whitehall, before " the king's majestie, at the nuptialls of the right “ honourable the Lord Hay and his lady, upon the “ twelfe day last, being Jan. 6, 1607." STEEVENS.
I'll not answer that : But, say, it is my humour; is it unsuerd?] That is,
But, say, it is my humour; Is it answered ? What if my house be troubled with a rat, And I be pleas'd to give ten thousand ducats To have it baned? What, are you answer'd
Some men there are, love not a gaping pig ;)
I will not give a direct answer to the question you ask, nor give you a particular account of the motives of my present proceeding : But suppose it is my particular fancy to act thus; will you accept of that for an answer ? HEATH.
The Jew being asked a question which the law does not require him to answer, stands upon his right, and refuses; but afterwards gratifies his own lignity by such answers as he knows will aggravate the pain of the enquirer. I will not answer, says he, as to a legal or serious question, but since you want an answer, will this serve you ? JOHNSON.
ma gaping pig ;] So, in Webster's Dutchess of Malfy, 1623 :
• He could not abide to see a pig's head gaping; “ I thought your grace would find him out a
'« Darkas cannot endure to see a cat,
STEVENS. Shakspeare might have read of such another antipathy [to a pigge stufte] in Goulart's Histories, of which there was an earlier edition than that of 1607. Ritson.
By a gaping pig, Shakspeare, I believe meant a pig prepared for the table; for in that state is the
Some, that are mad, if they behold a cat ; And, others, when the bag-pipe sings i' the
nose, Cannot contain their urine for affection.8
epithet, gaping, most applicable to this animal. So, in Fletcher's Elder Brother :
“ And they stand gaping like a roasted pig." A passage in one of Nashe's pamphlets, (which, perhaps, furnished our author with his instance) may serve to confirm the observation: “ The causes con.
ducting unto wrath are as diverse as the actions of
a man's life. Some will take on like a madman, “ if they see a pig come to the table. Sotericus the “ the surgeon was choleric at the sight of sturgeon," &c. Pierce Pennyless his supplication to the Devil. 1592. MALONE.
8 Cannot contain their urine for affection.] The reading of all the old editions is :
“ And others, when the bag-pipe sings i' th’nose, “ Cannot contain their urine for affection. “ Masters of passion sways it to the mood • Of what it likes or loaths.” Ritson.
The true meaning undoubtedly is, -The masters of passion, that is, such as are possessed of the art of engaging, and managing the human passions, influence them by a skilful application to the parti. cular likings or loathings of the person they are addressing; this is a proof that men are generally governed in their conduct by those likings and loathings; and, therefore, it is by no means strange or unnatural that I should be so too in the present instance. Heath.
Mr. Rowe reads :