Ho ! no , no , no , no : my meaning , in saying he is a good man , is to have you
understand Enter BASSANIO and ... once upon the hip , which your prophet , the
Nazarite , conjured the I will feed fat the ancient grudge I bear him . devil into . ...
our sacred nation ; and he rails , with you , walk with you , and so following ; but I
Even there where merchants most do ... I hate him for he is a Christian ; Tubal , a
wealthy Hebrew of my tribe , But more , for that , in low simplicity , Will furnish me .
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"like a wood woman" might indeed have meant "frantic" or "wild" (with grief) which Launce mentions referring to the "shoe" which he adopts for the sake of illustration. However, Shakespeare, even at his earliest writings, was vastly entertained by double entendres and his love of puns is so well documented. In that time in Italy, women wore platform shoes which were raised to elevate the shoes from the mud and other unpleasant "stuff". These were called "chopines" and the platforms were constructed of wood. The higher the platform, the higher the pretentiousness of the lady. Her height could have put her above many others. Since Launce has his father and mother represented as shoes, this second meaning is certainly not outside of the possibility for Shakespeare's intention. Naturally, it would have had the effect of a rather "localized" and "temporary" idea, but the fact of its having been very popular in that day makes it a candidate for the Bard's delight.