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He raised his head, and looked up the long dismal street. He recollected that outcasts like himself, condemned to wander day and night in those dreadful streets, had sometimes gone distracted with their own loneliness. He remembered to have heard many years before that a homeless wretch had once been found in a solitary corner, sharpening a rusty knife to plunge into his own heart, preferring death to that endless, weary wandering to and fro. In an instant his resolve was taken, his limbs received new life; he ran quickly from the spot, and paused not for breath until he reached the river-side.
He crept softly down the steep stone stairs that lead from the commencement of Waterloo Bridge, down to the water's level. He crouched into a corner, and held his breath as the patrol passed. Never did prisoner's heart throb with the hope of liberty and life half so eagerly as did that of the wretched man at the prospect of death. The watch passed close to him, but he remained unobserved; and after waiting till the sound of footsteps had died away in the distance, he cautiously descended, and stood beneath the gloomy arch that forms the landing-place from the river.
The tide was in, and the water flowed at his feet. The rain had ceased, the wind was lulled, and all was, for the moment, still and quiet so quiet that the slightest sound on the opposite bank, even the rippling of the water against the barges that were moored there, was distinctly audible to his ear. The stream stole languidly and sluggishly on. Strange and fantastic forms rose to the surface, and beckoned him to approach; dark gleaming eyes peered from the water, and seemed to mock his hesitation, while hollow murmurs from behind, urged him onwards. He retreated a few paces, took a short run, desperate leap, and plunged into the river.
Not five seconds had passed when he rose to the water's surface but what a change had taken place in that short time, in all his thoughts and feelings! Life - life in any form, poverty, misery, starvation any thing but death. He fought and struggled with the water that closed over his head, and screamed in agonies of terror. The curse of his own son rang in his ears. The shore but one foot of dry ground he could almost touch the step. One hand's breadth nearer, and he was saved but the tide bore him onward, under the dark arches of the bridge, and he sank to the bottom.
Again he rose, and struggled for life. For one instant
for one brief instant
the buildings on the river's banks,
the lights on the bridge through which the current had borne him, the black water, and the fast flying clouds, were distinctly visible once more he sunk, and once again he Bright flames of fire shot up from earth to heaven, and reeled before his eyes, while the water thundered in his ears, and stunned him with its furious roar.
A week afterwards the body was washed ashore, some miles down the river, a swollen and disfigured mass. Unrecognised and unpitied, it was borne to the grave; and there it has long since mouldered away!
Side 8. In sooth, in truth.
kastes om, som et Skib af Stormen,
came by it, kom til det.
is tossing, ocean, maa her læses i tre Stavelser. argosies, store Kjøbmandsskibe (rimeligvis saaledes kaldte efter Skibet Argo). portly, med stadselig Holdning, majestætisk (af port, bearing, air, mien, Holdning). signiors: Antonios store Kjøbmandsskibe ere ligesom venetianske Signori (Storborgere) hensatte paa Havet, for hvem de mindre Fartøier ærbødig gjøre sin Reverens, idet de seile dem forbi. - flood, Havet. S. 9. Pageant, egtl. Stillads, Forhøining, der brugtes ved Optog, dernæst selve Optoget; Shaksp. tænker rimeligvis paa de store Stadsbaade, der brugtes ved Optog paa Themsen. to overpeer, overse, se ned paa. petty, Fr. petit. - trafficker, ligesom trader og merchant, baade Handelsmand og Handelsfartøi; s. ndfr. S. 33: merchant-marring rocks, Klipper, som knuse Fartøierne. as they fly; they : the petty traffickers. venture, 1. Voven, Spekulation; 2. det man sætter i Vove, Indsats: havde jeg saa meget staaende paa Spil; smlgn. strax ndfr. ventures. - forth, abroad, ude, i fjerne Egne, paa Søen. still, hos de ældre Forfattere i Bet. always, constantly. port, Havn; pier, Sted, hvor der lægges til med Fartøier, Brygge (egtl. Stendæmning, Fr. pierre); road, Rhed, Ankerplads.
My wind would blow etc., mit eget Aandedræt vilde blæse mig ind i : jeg vilde faa en Feber af Pusten af min egen Aande. shallow, egtl. Adj., grund; Subst.: Grund, Banke = flats, shoals. Andrew, Skibets Navn (maaske med Allusion til Andreas Doria, den berømte genuesiske Admiral). docked in sand, doksat : begravet, liggende i Sand (istedenfor i en virkelig Dok). to vail (Fr. avaler, hvoraf avalanche), lade falde, sænke, to lower. high-top, Mers. to kiss her burial, »kysse sin Grav.. worth this, værd saa meget lack (maa tænkes sagt med en Gestus af Skuespilleren). the thought, slippe Tanken, lade være at tænke paa. tell not me, snak ikke til mig ɔ: spar din Tale (jeg véd, hvorledes det er fat med Antonio)."
in one bottom trusted, i eet Fartøi.estate, Gods, Eiendom, saavel rørlig
MERCHANT OF VENICE.
Act I. Sc. 1.