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What follow'd this? Mont. Her father died soon after, Bequeathing her no portion but his curses ; Whilst I, though inly griev'd as much as he, With smooth demeanor pass'd the matter off, Reckless of further question. Vasq.
'Twas provoking. Mont. 'Twas wormwood to my pride: as for my
In the warm foldings of some kinder fair
I could have bought oblivion. But to be scorn'd!
What is there in this smooth-fac'd Ganymede
To shame my functions in a woman's eye,
That he should glitter like a star; whilst I
Look'd black as pitchy night! What, am not I
Gifted with all dimensions of a man;
Voice, action, reason, thought, as well as he?
Passions that rise as high, and cry as loud
For quick enjoyment; appetites as keen,
And hopes as daring? Ay, more deadly daring;
For who shall cheat me of the sweet revenge
Which now dawns dimly on my troubled soul.
Vasq. Your rage transports you, sir.
I thought 'twas coyness-
Woman's stale artifice, to keep us warm
And keen in the pursuit: and whilst, forsooth,
I fondly staid the ripening of her life,
This boy of smoother phraseology
Breath'd on her neck oné am'rous melting sigh,
And, quick as eyes could meet, or hands encounter,
Quick as the motion of a falling star,
Told his soft tale, and rushed into her arms.
Vasq. You brood too much upon it.
What! dost think
I am compact of such cull-mettled stuff,
Calmly to see the pride of all my hopes
Torn from me, and not vow a great revenge?
Vasq. But how to master it?
. Therein I must have
Thy courisel. For a while he sojourns here,
To move his interest with our senators;
Whereto, as counting much upon my friendship,
And knowing I am gracious in their eyes,
He hath solicited mine aid. His wife
Attends him here.
What out of this, my lord ? Mont. She doats upon him with that trem'lous love, Which, where’tis deepest rooted shakes the most; And whilst abroad he plays the truant, sits And images in fond solicitude The causes of his absence. If she but knew He left th' encircling harbour of her arms,
To ride at large on love's unhallow'd sea
Vasq. Is't so indeed ?
Mont. .. . Thou know'st Rodone?
Vasg. The cunning'st shrew in Venice.
She has hook'd him:
Made fools of all his senses, that he thinks
Her virtue more transcendant than her beauty.
For, like a skilful mistress of her trade,
With a soft coy reserve, and delicate frankness,
She drew him on, and madden’d so his sense
With wav'ring looks, and wishes half express'd,
So play'd with his young fancy, and beguil'd
His green experience, that the fool is caught:
Nay, he has diced so deeply with her friends,
Right skilful in their calling, that, his means
Exhausted, she has prodigally fed;
So that she holds him by a double bond,
A debtor to her bounty as her love;
Now, Vasquez, out of this
Enter a Servant.
Thy business, quick.
Serv. A lady seeks your presence.
I attend her. [Exit Sere.
She comes to know what progress I have made .
In Valletort's preferment. '
Meet me an half hour hence: we'll commune further.
Vasq. I will not fail, my lord
Till then, farewell. (Exit Vaso.
This is a precious villain, whom I keep
To serve my purpose. He has done an act
To which he knows, by the strict course of law,
His death is adjunct; and I hold him fixt
Under the sharp suspended sword of justice,
To further my revenge: if he should shrink
From any enterprize I put him to,
I'll cut the trembling hair that bars his fate,
And let the keen edge fall on him.
You were the latest in my thoughts. The state
Hath heard my suit press'd warmly for my friend,
And I am promised, on the next promotion
He shall not be forgotten.
Thanks, good Montano.
Yes! thou art noble; and the idle breath
Of a weak woman's praise I know is irksome.
The noble mind, disdaining recompence,
Rolls on its tide of bounty, like the Nile,
Expansive, silent as its secret source,
And laves, with equal pride, the desert spot
Whose wasted misery can yield no return,
And the fair laughing land whose beauteous bosom
Repays with rich fertility the debt.
Mont. Oh, had I power (as I am rich in will)
To cheat thy bosom of one lab’ring sigh,
Or in those lucid orbs suspend a tear,
It would be prouder triumph to my heart,
Than to the victor, in his trophied car,
The shout of nations: or the yielding sigh
Breath'd in soft murm'rings to a lover's ear.
Bri. I know it, for thou lov’st humanity;
And if I thought a woman's foolish fears.
Were worth thy private ear —
Speak on, speak on.
Bri. You are my husband's friend.
I fain would prove so.
Bri. Be not offended: but in Venice here,
Where thick temptations throng on every side,
To lure the rover from domestic joys —
You must not make a truant of my lord.
Mont. What, doubt his constancy!
Nay, think not so.
The turtle, when her mate hath left her nest,
First knows the rapture his return would bring :
And I, whose thoughts and wishes, hopes and fears,
Are grafted all on him, where they must die
Or bring forth fruit- Oh! tempt him not abroad,
For I shall quarrel with the very air