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The Merchant of Venice

William Shakespeare

  Act 5 Scene 1

page Act 5 Scene 1 Page 2

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LORENZO

    In such a night
15Did Jessica steal from the wealthy Jew,
And with an unthrift love did run from Venice
As far as Belmont.

LORENZO

On a night like this, Jessica ran away from the wealthy Jew and stole his money. She ran away from Venice all the way to Belmont with her spendthrift lover.

JESSICA

   In such a night
Did young Lorenzo swear he loved her well,
Stealing her soul with many vows of faith,
20And ne'er a true one.

JESSICA

On a night like this, young Lorenzo swore he loved her very much, stealing her heart with vows of love, but not one vow was true.

LORENZO

    In such a night
Did pretty Jessica, like a little shrew,
Slander her love, and he forgave it her.

LORENZO

On a night like this, pretty Jessica, in a bad mood, said outrageously wrong things about her lover, and he forgave her.

JESSICA

I would outnight you, did nobody come.
But, hark, I hear the footing of a man.

JESSICA

I’d get the better of you in this storytelling game, but somebody’s coming. I hear his footsteps.
Enter STEPHANO, a messenger
STEPHANO, a messenger, enters.

LORENZO

25Who comes so fast in silence of the night?

LORENZO

Who are you, coming so fast in this quiet night?

STEPHANO

A friend.

STEPHANO

A friend.

LORENZO

A friend? What friend? Your name, I pray you, friend?

LORENZO

A friend? What friend? What’s your name, please, friend?

STEPHANO

Stephano is my name, and I bring word
My mistress will before the break of day
30Be here at Belmont. She doth stray about
By holy crosses, where she kneels and prays
For happy wedlock hours.

STEPHANO

My name’s Stephano, and I’ve come to tell you my mistress will arrive here at Belmont before sunrise. She’s still at the monastery, kneeling and praying for a happy marriage.

LORENZO

    Who comes with her?

LORENZO

Who’s coming with her?