A line-by-line translation

The Merchant of Venice

The Merchant of Venice Translation Act 3, Scene 1

Line Map Clear Line Map Add

Enter SOLANIO and SALERIO

SOLANIO

Now, what news on the Rialto?

SOLANIO

What news is there from the Rialto now?

SALERIO

Why, yet it lives there unchecked that Antonio hath a ship of rich lading wracked on the narrow seas. The Goodwins I think they call the place—a very dangerous flat, and fatal, where the carcasses of many a tall shiplie buried, as they say, if my gossip report be an honest woman of her word.

SALERIO

Well, there's an unproven rumor around there that Antonio has lost a ship carrying many riches on the English Channel. It supposedly happened on a very dangerous, deadly sandbar I think they call The Goodwins, where the remains of many tall ships lie buried. That is, if this gossip turns out to be true.

SOLANIO

I would she were as lying a gossip in that as ever knapped ginger or made her neighbors believe she wept for the death of a third husband. But it is true, without any slips of prolixity or crossing the plain highway of talk, that the good Antonio, the honest Antonio—oh, that I had a title good enough to keep his name company!—

SOLANIO

I hope this rumor is as false as a woman who tells her neighbors she has wept over the death of her third husband. But it is true, at the risk of talking your ear off, that the good Antonio, the honest Antonio—oh, I wish I had something to call him that was good enough to be next to his name!

SALERIO

Come, the full stop.

SALERIO

Come on, get to the point.

SOLANIO

Ha, what sayest thou? Why, the end is he hath lost a ship.

SOLANIO

Hm, what are you saying? Oh, the point is that he has lost a ship.

SALERIO

I would it might prove the end of his losses.

SALERIO

I hope this is the last of his losses.

SOLANIO

Let me say “Amen” betimes, lest the devil cross my prayer, for here he comes in the likeness of a Jew.

SOLANIO

Let me say "amen" now,  so that the devil doesn't interfere with that prayer, because here comes the devil himself, in the shape of a Jew.

Enter SHYLOCK

How now, Shylock? What news among the merchants?

How are you, Shylock? What's the news among the merchants?

SHYLOCK

You knew—none so well, none so well as you—of my daughter’s flight.

SHYLOCK

You knew about my daughter's plan to run away, and no one knew better than you.

SALERIO

That’s certain. I, for my part, knew the tailor that made the wings she flew withal.

SALERIO

That's for sure. For my part, I knew the tailor who made the wings she flew away on.

SOLANIO

And Shylock, for his own part, knew the bird was fledged, and then it is the complexion of them all to leave the dam.

SOLANIO

And as for Shylock, he knew his little birdie had wings and he knew she was likely to leave the nest.

SHYLOCK

She is damned for it.

SHYLOCK

She is damned for running away.

SOLANIO

That’s certain—if the devil may be her judge.

SOLANIO

That's certain, if you, the devil, are her judge.

SHYLOCK

My own flesh and blood to rebel!

SHYLOCK

I can't believe my own flesh and blood rebelled against me!

SOLANIO

Out upon it, old carrion! Rebels it at these years?

SOLANIO

No way, you old thing! You can't control your flesh even at your age?

SHYLOCK

I say my daughter is my flesh and blood.

SHYLOCK

I mean my daughter is my own flesh and blood.

SALERIO

There is more difference between thy flesh and hers than between jet and ivory, more between your bloods than there is between red wine and rhenish. But tell us,do you hear whether Antonio have had any loss at sea orno?

SALERIO

There's a greater difference between your flesh and hers than between coal and ivory, and a greater difference between your blood and hers than between red and white wine. But tell us, have you heard whether Antonio has suffered any losses at sea or not?

SHYLOCK

There I have another bad match!— a bankrupt, a prodigal who dare scarce show his head on the Rialto, a beggar that was used to come so smug upon the mart. Let him look to his bond. He was wont to call me usurer; let himlook to his bond. He was wont to lend money for a Christian courtesy; let him look to his bond.

SHYLOCK

With him I have more bad luck! He is a bankrupt, reckless with money, and he doesn't dare show his head in the Rialto. He is a beggar who used to be smug in the market. Let him pay attention to his obligations. He used to always insult me for charging interest; well, let him pay attention to his obligations. He used to lend money as a Christian favor; let him pay attention to his obligations.

SALERIO

Why, I am sure, if he forfeit thou wilt not take his flesh.What’s that good for?

SALERIO

Well, I'm sure that if he doesn't pay you back you won't actually take his flesh. What would that be good for?

SHYLOCK

To bait fish withal. If it will feed nothing else, it will feed my revenge. He hath disgraced me and hindered me half a million, laughed at my losses, mocked at my gains, scorned my nation, thwarted my bargains, cooled my friends, heated mine enemies—and what’s his reason? Iam a Jew. Hath not a Jew eyes? Hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions? Fed with the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject to the same diseases, healed by the same means, warmed and cooled by the same winter and summer as a Christian is? If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And ifyou wrong us, shall we not revenge? If we are like you in the rest, we will resemble you in that. If a Jew wrong a Christian, what is his humility? Revenge. If a Christian wrong a Jew, what should his sufferance be by Christian example? Why, revenge. The villainy you teach me I will execute—and it shall go hard but I will betterthe instruction.

SHYLOCK

I could use it as bait for fish. If it will feed nothing else, it will at least feed my revenge. Half a million times he has disgraced me and hindered me. He has laughed at my losses, mocked my profits, scorned my people, messed with my business deals, turned my friends against me, and encouraged my enemies. And what's his reason for all this? I am a Jew. Does a Jew not have eyes? Does a Jew not have hands, organs, senses, affections, passions? Are we not fed with the same food, hurt by the same weapons, affected by the same diseases, healed by the same medicines, warmed and cooled by the same winter and summer as Christians? If you stab us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, should we not take revenge? If we are like you in all the other ways, we will resemble you in terms of revenge, too. If a Jew wrongs a Christian, what does he do? He takes revenge. If a Christian wrongs a Jew, what should the Jew do, following the Christian example? Why, he should take revenge. I will follow your own villainous example, and I'll probably outdo my teachers.

Enter a MAN from ANTONIO

MAN

[to SOLANIO and SALERIO] Gentlemen, my master Antonio is at his house and desires to speak with you both.

MAN

[To SOLANIO and SALERIO] Gentlemen, my master Antonio is at his house and wishes to speak with both of you.

SALERIO

We have been up and down to seek him.

SALERIO

We've been all over the place looking for him.

Enter TUBAL

SOLANIO

Here comes another of the tribe. A third cannot be matched unless the devil himself turn Jew.

SOLANIO

Here comes another Jew. There couldn't be a third to match these two unless the devil himself turned into a Jew.

Exeunt SOLANIO, SALERIO, and MAN

SHYLOCK

How now, Tubal? What news from Genoa? Hast thou found my daughter?

SHYLOCK

How are things, Tubal? What's the news from Genoa? Have you found my daughter?

TUBAL

I often came where I did hear of her, but cannot find her.

TUBAL

I often found word of her, but I couldn't find her.

SHYLOCK

Why, there, there, there, there! A diamond gone cost metwo thousand ducats in Frankfurt—the curse never fell upon our nation till now! I never felt it till now—Two thousand ducats in that, and other precious, precious jewels. I would my daughter were dead at my foot and thejewels in her ear! Would she were hearsed at my foot and the ducats in her coffin! No news of them? Why, so. And I know not what’s spent in the search. Why thou, loss upon loss! The thief gone with so much, and so muchto find the thief—and no satisfaction, no revenge. Nor no ill luck stirring but what lights o' my shoulders, nosighs but o' my breathing, no tears but o' my shedding.

SHYLOCK

Well there you go! One of the diamonds she took cost me two thousand ducats in Frankfurt. Our people are cursed but I've never felt the curse until now! Two thousand ducats lost in that diamond, plus the other precious, precious jewels. I wish my daughter were dead here at my feet, with the jewels in her ear. I wish she were dead in her coffin right here and the ducats were inside it with her! There's no news of them? All right, then. And I don't even know how much I'm spending to search for them. Loss on top of loss! The thief took so much, and now it takes even more money to find the thief. And still I have no satisfaction, and can find no revenge. No one feels bad luck, remorse, or grief as much as I do now.

TUBAL

Yes, other men have ill luck too. Antonio, as I heard inGenoa—

TUBAL

Other men have bad luck, too. I heard in Genoa that Antonio—

SHYLOCK

What, what, what? Ill luck, ill luck?

SHYLOCK

What, what, what? He's had some bad luck? Bad luck?

TUBAL

Hath an argosy cast away coming from Tripolis.

TUBAL

Antonio has lost a ship coming from Tripoli.

SHYLOCK

I thank God, I thank God! Is ’t true, is ’t true?

SHYLOCK

I thank God, I thank God! Is it true? Is it true?

TUBAL

I spoke with some of the sailors that escaped the wrack.

TUBAL

I spoke with some of the sailors that escaped the shipwreck.

SHYLOCK

I thank thee, good Tubal. Good news, good news! Ha, ha,heard in Genoa.

SHYLOCK

Thank you, good Tubal. Good news, good news! Ha ha, good news heard in Genoa.

TUBAL

Your daughter spent in Genoa, as I heard, in one nightfourscore ducats.

TUBAL

As I heard, your daughter spent eighty ducats in one night in Genoa.

SHYLOCK

Thou stickest a dagger in me. I shall never see my goldagain. Fourscore ducats at a sitting! Fourscore ducats!

SHYLOCK

You stick a knife in my heart. I will never see my gold again. Eighty ducats in one sitting! Eighty ducats!

TUBAL

There came divers of Antonio’s creditors in my company to Venice that swear he cannot choose but break.

TUBAL

Some of Antonio's creditors came with me to Venice and swore that he has no choice but to forfeit on his loan.

SHYLOCK

I am very glad of it. I’ll plague him. I’ll torture him. I am glad of it.

SHYLOCK

I'm very glad to hear that. I'll keep after him. I'll torture him. I'm glad about this.

TUBAL

One of them showed me a ring that he had of your daughter for a monkey.

TUBAL

One of them showed me a ring that your daughter gave him in payment for a monkey.

SHYLOCK

Out upon her! Thou torturest me, Tubal. It was my turquoise. I had it of Leah when I was a bachelor. I would not have given it for a wilderness of monkeys.

SHYLOCK

Damn her! You are torturing me, Tubal, by telling me this. That must have been my turquoise ring. Leah gave it to me when I was a bachelor. I would not have given it away for a whole jungle full of monkeys.

TUBAL

But Antonio is certainly undone.

TUBAL

But Antonio is certainly ruined. 

SHYLOCK

Nay, that’s true, that’s very true. Go, Tubal, fee me an officer. Bespeak him a fortnight before.—I will have the heart of him if he forfeit, for were he out of Venice I can make what merchandise I will.— Go, go, Tubal, and meet me at our synagogue. Go, good Tubal. At our synagogue, Tubal.

SHYLOCK

Yes, that's true, very true. Go and get a police officer for me, Tubal. Pay for his services two weeks in advance. I will take Antonio's heart if he forfeits on the loan. If he's no longer around in Venice, I can do what I want with my trading business without his competition. Go, go, Tubal, and then meet me at our synagogue. Go, good Tubal. Meet me at our synagogue, Tubal.

Exeunt severally

The merchant of venice
Join LitCharts A+ and get the entire Merchant of Venice Translation as a printable PDF.
LitCharts A+ members also get exclusive access to:
  • Downloadable translations of every Shakespeare play and sonnet
  • Downloads of 1146 LitCharts Lit Guides
  • Explanations and citation info for 25,393 quotes covering 1146 books
  • Teacher Editions for every Lit Guide
  • PDFs defining 136 key Lit Terms
Matt cosby
About the Translator: Matt Cosby
Matt Cosby graduated from Amherst College in 2011, and currently works as a writer and editor for LitCharts. He is from Florida but now lives in Portland, Oregon, where he also makes art, plays the piano, and goes to dog parks.