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Hawkins calls “sympathy,” but I should rather he found hints of in the novelist's account of the call respect. Why? Not because he was a lady's proceedings between her discovery of Andown-trodden Jew—he would have done as much saldo's position and her reception of him and for the most orthodox and prosperous Christian her husband at Belmonte. in the land, and has done as much for men as What need, then, have we to seek further, thoroughly depraved as lago and Edmund in either for the source of the plot, or the choice of “Lear”—but because, though not the hero of the subject, or the manner of its treatment? To the comedy, he had a conspicuous part in it, and hear our modern apologists, one would suppose Shakespeare never puts in a conspicuous part a that the argument of the play was the persecuman absolutely devoid of all qualities that can tion of a Jew by Christians; a description of it inspire respect or sympathy. Of the Jew in the for which, if the Venetian law had been represtory we know nothing except in relation to the sented in it as sanctioning the claim of a Chrisbond and the forfeiture, and in that part Shake- tian to cut the flesh out of the body of a Jew, speare has kept close to his original. But, hav- there would have been some color. As it is, to ing also to show him in his relation to other men, call it the persecution of a Christian by a Jew he endows him with such respectable qualities as would be nearer the mark. But the truth is, that are not incompatible with the work he has to do the question at issue has nothing to do with the -courage, intellect, eloquence, force of charac- question of religion. The law of Venice, in so ter, strength of will, attachment to his race and far as it is brought before us in the action, knows creed, and a show of respect for his law. I say a distinction between citizens and aliens, but not a “show”; for, though he makes a great profes- between Christians and Jews. It is administered sion of religious scruples, he never lets them in- strictly, without respect of race or creed. Nor is terfere with business. His religion forbids him there anything in the play, from the first scene to to eat or drink with Christians; and yet, when he the last, from which it can be inferred that a remembers that by “ feeding upon the prodigal Jew in Venice labored under any disadvantage, Christian" he may help to disable Antonio from political or social, as compared with a Christian. payment of his debt at the day, he overcomes On the contrary, pains have been taken to remind his objection to the smell of pork and consents us that there was none, all such inequality of to dine with Bassanio. He refuses payment of dealing being against the cardinal policy of the his debt in full, with two hundred per cent. inter- state. See act iii., scene 3: est for the few days' delay, because he dares not break his oath; he has sworn by the holy Sab
I am sure the Duke bath to have the pound of flesh and nothing
Will never grant this forfeiture to hold. else; to forbear would be to “lay perjury upon
Antonio, The Duke can not deny the course of law:
For the commodity that strangers have his soul,” which he will not do for Israel. But,
With us in Venice, if it be denied, when he finds that he can not take the other
Will much impeach the justice of the state ; man's life except at the peril of his own, he does
Since that the trade and profit of the city forbear; leaves his soul to settle with the perjury
Consisteth of all nations. as it can; is ready for any compromise, even though “involving a renunciation of a cherished Shylock, it is true, who hates Antonio because faith.” * What he would not do for Israel he he is a Christian, naturally assumes that Antonio will yet do for himself. From all which I con- quarrels with his usances because he is a Jew. clude that Shakespeare did not mean us to be But that is only his own fancy; and even if it taken in by the solemnity of his professions, or had been true it would not have been in point; to look up to him as the martyr-hero of “an old, for his quarrel with Antonio was a private one, untainted religious aristocracy,” but only to re- with which the state had nothing to do. If gard him with a certain interest as a man quali- Shakespeare had meant his audience to feel that fied by nature for a better part than he has cho- the Hebrew race was suffering under Christian
oppression, he would surely have shown them If the characters of Bassanio, Antonio, and some case in illustration. Yet the only Hebrews Shylock are manifestly and directly derived from he shows us or tells us of are Shylock himself Ser Giovanni's story, it need hardly be said that and his friend Tubal-both of them rich, and at the Lady of Belmonte suggested the idea of liberty to make their bargains in their own way, Portia, every one of whose qualities, as we see and assisted by the laws to enforce the terms acthem brought out in the play by Shakespeare's cording to the letter, even when most iniquitous own hand — the generosity, the affection, the and unjustifiable. And what oppression by the spirit, the intellect, the gayety and playfulness, state has Shylock to complain of, either on his
own behalf or on that of his sacred nation ? *“The Theatre," December, 1879, p. 261. When he demands judgment on his bond, the
court warns him that if he insists on exacting a self; to escape from a house which to her was a penalty involving the death of a citizen he will hell, with only the “ merry devil ” Launcelot to himself have to pay the penalty prescribed by cheer it; from a father of whose manners she the law for shedding Christian blood—namely, was (not without reason and to her credit, though confiscation of land and goods. When he de- to her regret) ashamed ; and from the chance, clines to press his demand on this condition, the should it suit him, of having to take “any of the court informs him that he has already incurred stock of Barrabas " for a husband; nor do many the penalty prescribed by the law for “seeking of us object to see advantage taken by Antonio the life" of a citizen-namely, the forfeiture of of the pressure which the law enables him to put one half of his goods to the person whose life he on Shylock for the purpose of securing a comhad sought, of the other half to the state, and fortable provision for her. But we all feel that his life to the Duke's mercy. Of which penalty she ought to have left the ducats and jewels bethe court enforces so much only as amounts to hind; and the fact that Shakespeare allowed her the sequestration of one half of his property for to carry them off without a hint of disapprobathe benefit of his daughter; the rest being re- tion from anybody (there being no dramatic nemitted on two conditions—one, that he bind him- cessity for it) suggests a doubt whether in those self to leave her the whole after his death ; the early days he was fully alive to the impropriety. other, that in the mean time he“ become a Chris- Perhaps the easy morality of the comic theatre tian," whatever that may mean. This is the full in all such questions—the large privilege which extent of the oppression, in consideration of which the young lovers have always enjoyed of deceivwe are called on to excuse him-as the repre- ing and overreaching the stern parent—had besentative victim of unreasoning prejudice against come so familiar as to hide from him the true naJews in general—for contriving by a fraudulent ture of the transaction; which in so tragic a contract to murder a rival; these the “inherited business as Shylock's revenge can not be regardand personal wrongs" by which his fine nature ed with the levity which comedy permits. But, has become so warped and soured."*
however that may be, I can not doubt that the This strange notion, that the secret purpose effect would be much better in modern eyes if of the play was to expose the mischiefs of reli- Jessica were allowed to escape without the treagious intolerance, was probably suggested by the sure. The loss of his daughter to her race and last of the two conditions of pardon. And though faith would supply Shylock with as fair a motive I do not think that Shakespeare meant it to be so for vengeance; he could make as much noise taken—for I suspect that in the eyes of a Globe about it; and the secret that he really cared audience a Jew consenting to “become a Chris- more for the ducats than the daughter would not tian” was simply an infidel seeking admission be forced upon the knowledge of his admirers, into the fold and qualifying his soul for salvation who regard paternal tenderness as one of his -I admit that to modern ears it sounds like a most conspicuous virtues. Two lines struck out wanton insult, and (as producing on a modern from Jessica's part in the sixth scene of the secaudience an effect the very opposite to that which ond act, a few from Salanio's in the eighth, and was intended) ought to be left out. Nothing a few more in the interview with Tubal at the would be lost by the omission, and it would be beginning of the third act, would (without at all universally felt that Christianity could have no disturbing the action of the play) remove cominterest in enlisting such a recruit.
pletely our only remaining scruple as to the poetic The other condition has reference to an episode justice of the final settlement. For, though Shywhich is not to be found in the original story, but lock has escaped with a punishment which any one was introduced into the play partly to vary and who considers the character of his crime must enliven the action, and partly, perhaps, to account feel to be very far short of his desert, he is far for Shylock's determination to revenge himself on away in Venice among his money-bags, and does one Christian by giving him a just ground of not trouble us. We saw him baffled and disquarrel with another. In the course of which missed in the fourth act with general satisfaction, episode the moral sensibilities of a modern spec- and can leave him to meditate upon the example tator suffer a little shock, from which a judicious of Christian mercy which he owes to the generadapter might relieve him by the omission of a. osity of his intended victim at the suggestion of few lines. Not that I would debar Jessica from the “wise young judge,” and hope that he may seeking relief from her Jewish disabilities by the profit by it. In the mean time Antonio's fortunes nearest way. We are all glad to see her at liber- are happily restored by the safe arrival of his arty to choose her husband and her religion for her- gosies with all their merchandise, and everybody
is well pleased. * « The Theatre,” November, 1879, p. 194.
JAMES SPEDDING (Cornhill Magazine).
osophic study of crimes is not merely an caligraphy and engraving is appealed to in order
throat had been cut in such a fashion as to preThus much for the part Science promises to clude the idea of suicide. The prisoner had play in determining the causes of crime and been last seen in the company of the deceased, criminals. With the results of crime, however, and in his possession a knife stained with blood Science at present concerns herself much more was found. This knise was alleged by the prosenearly; and it is with the ways and means Sci-, cution to be that with which the murder was ence brings to bear on the detection of crime committed, and the stains thereupon were althat we purpose chiefly to concern ourselves in' leged to be those of human blood. The defense the present paper. Our newspapers familiarize explained the presence of these stains by assertus, day by day, with instances of the application ing that they were produced by cutting raw beef. of scientific methods to criminal investigation. Now, it may be asked, in what position is science
placed in such an issue as the present ? Could The red corpuscles of human blood are round the microscopist, placed in the witness-box, and biconcave in form, each measuring from the swear to the identity of the stain with blood; one three-thousandth to the one four-thousandth and could he testify to its being human blood as of an inch in diameter. The white corpuscles distinguished from that of the ox? To the first are a little larger and attain a diameter averaging query, an affirmative answer must be returned. the one two-thousand five-hundredth part of an Chemical tests of great delicacy are known inch. Thus it may be safely asserted that, when whereby the presence of blood can be infallibly the microcopist is able to discern in any liquid detected. Mr. Sorby tells us that spectrum anal- those characteristic blood-globules, he may posiysis will reveal the presence of blood where the tively allege that the liquid in question is certainly stain is only the tenth of an inch in diameter, blood. When the further and equally important or where a quantity of the red coloring matter question of the kind of blood is submitted to the of blood, not exceeding the one hundredth part scientific observer, his answers should savor of of a grain, can be obtained. In so far as blood caution. The red corpuscles of man, unlike the itself and its mere presence are concerned, there white, do not possess a central particle or nucleus. are no scientific difficulties in the way of its exact They are, therefore, in physiological language, determination and separation from all other red- said to be “non-nucleated.” But it is noteworcolored stains. But, when we turn to the ques- thy that, in this latter feature, man's blood-globtion of the exact source of the blood-stains, we ules agree with those of all other mammals or find the powers of science to be limited in some quadrupeds. Every quadruped, in short, posdegree. In the case just alluded to, in which the sesses red blood-globules which want a central defense rested upon a statement that the blood- spot or nucleus. Moreover, all quadrupeds, exstains were obtained from beef, the fallacies of cept the camel-tribe, possess red blood-globules evidence which grossly departed from a scientific of circular shape; those of the camel being ellipstandard were exemplified. A chemist gave evi- tical in form. But, when we descend in the anidence, in which he alleged that the knife in ques- mal scale and pass to the birds, as most nearly tion had been immersed in living blood to its hilt, approaching quadrupeds, and from the birds to and that the blood was certainly not that of the reptiles and fishes, the blood-globules are found, ox or sheep. This testimony was offered, despite in these lower classes, to be not merely oval or the fact known to every physiologist that there elliptical in shape, but to be invariably nucleated exist no appreciable differences between the stain that is, possessing each a central particle. of living blood and of blood from a recently killed With this zoological information at hand, we animal, and that the microscopist is as yet unable may be able to appreciate the power of the mito detect differences between the blood of man croscope as a detector of crime.
In 1851, the and that of the ox or sheep sufficiently clear to defense, in a case of murder tried at the Essex enable him to decide their exact and specific na- Assizes, rested partly on the statement that the ture. Even spectrum analysis, with all its sub- blood-stains on the clothes of the prisoner were tilty of method and delicacy of research, can not derived from chicken's blood. In such a case the decide upon exact differences between new and microscopic evidence is invaluable, since the blood old blood-stains; nor can it enable the experi- of the bird will contain oval and nucleated globmenter to say if the blood be human or that of a ules; and, from an examination of these bloodlower animal. Fortunately, for the cause of jus- stains, the prisoner's statement in the case retice in the foregoing case, the crime was brought ferred to was proved to be false, the corpuscles home to the prisoner by evidence other than that being those of some mammal. Similarly, when of the chemist in question, and by testimony the late Professor Hughes Bennett, of Edinburgh, which depended on no fallacies of microscopic was confronted with a patient supposed to be testimony.
troubled with chest-disease of serious type, an To discover the limitations of science in such examination of the fluid blood supposed to have a case, we must make ourselves familiar with the come from the lungs revealed the presence of details of an elementary study in physiology. oval blood-globules. The patient's wonder may When a thin film of human blood is examined be better imagined than described when her imunder a high power of the microscope, it is seen posture was thus declared plain. Seeing, then, to present the appearance of a clear, watery fluid that the blood of quadrupeds is distinguishable —the serum and plasma of the physiologist-in from that of all other animals, the question yet which float an immense number of small, round remains, How far does microscopical evidence bodies, the blood-corpuscles. These latter are proceed in determining human blood from that of two kinds, red and white; the red being by of other mammals? Here, leaving aside the sinfar the more numerous, and imparting, through gular and exceptional case of the camels and their their immense numbers, the red hue to the blood. neighbors with oval but non-nucleated globules,
the chief, and indeed the only, guide to the mi- discovered to belong to some animal, and this croscopist must be size. This guide, it may be fact helped to turn the tide of evidence in favor further noticed, is by no means a certain or exact of the accused, although, had this case occurred test, since even in one and the same animal the before the day of the microscope and its use in blood-globules may vary in dimensions. In some medicine, it is not difficult to predict what would quadrupeds, it is true, the excessively minute have been the result of the trial in question. Cotnature of the globules would, of itself, form a ton fibers, proved by microscopical research to feature distinguishing them from those of man. be such, served as a link in the chain of evidence Thus the blood-corpuscles of the musk-deer adduced against a prisoner tried for homicide measure the one twelve thousand three hundred at an Essex Assizes in 1852. On the boots of and twenty-fifth part of an inch in diameter, such another man charged with a like crime at Maida size being infinitesimal when compared with stone, in 1863, Drs. Taylor and Pavy discovered those of man. When, however, we compare the some hairs corresponding with those taken from · blood of ordinary domestic animals with human the head of the deceased, who had been fatally blood, the difficulties in the way of exact deter- assaulted by kicking, while some red woolen mination increase in a very marked fashion. It fibers, also found on the boots of the accused, is known as a fact that the blood-globules of the corresponded with those of a woolen comforter horse, ox, ass, mouse, cat, pig, and bat are nearly with which the deceased had been provided. So of the same size; the dimensions of the blood- also in a case of much mystery, in which a young globules bearing no reference to the size of the woman was found brutally murdered, a knife animal to which they belong.
which had been placed in the hand of the deThe blood-globules which approach most ceased-presumably for the purpose of simulatnearly to those of man in size are found in the ing death by suicide-bore on its blade, amid a dog, rabbit, and hare. Supposing, therefore, that small blood-clot, a number of woolen fibers of a in a case of suspected murder a blood-stain were peculiar hue. These fibers exactly corresponded declared to be that of a dog, he would be a worse with those of a woolen jacket worn by the acthan foolish scientist who would even venture to cused, who was convicted, and duly confessed hazard his reputation by stating, in a witness- his crime. Such examples certainly serve to box, his ability to distinguish the stain as that of show the exceeding importance, in medical jurishuman blood. Cases in illustration of the fore- prudence, of the veriest trifles, and to demongoing facts are abundantly met with in the rec- strate how the most insignificant clews may, when ords of criminal jurisprudence. A medical wit- welded into the chain of circumstances, literally ness, giving evidence some years ago at an Eng- form “confirmations strong as proofs of holy lish assizes in a case of suspected homicide, was writ.” By aid of the microscope, linen fibers sharply rebuked by the presiding judge for the may be distinguished from those of cotton, and enunciation of speculative niceties regarding both from those of wool; while marked differblood; and in no eyes does such a witness seem ences are observable in the hairs of different animore foolish than in those of scientific men, who mals. know best the fallible ground on which he is Shreds and patches may thus literally piece treading. In another case a scientific witness out evidence of importance for or against an acalleged his ability to distinguish certain stains as cused person. And not less clearly is this fact those of horse's blood, and others as those of shown when the trifling details on which grave human blood-such evidence being inadmissible discoveries often hinge are illustrated. One Selon scientific grounds, and therefore morally and lis, who had attacked the Duke of Cumberland, legally wrong.
thereafter destroyed himself. Sellis committed The power and value of the microscope as an suicide by cut-throat, and on the left side of the aid to the discovery of the truth in criminal cases bed on which he was found a razor was laid. is, however, by no means limited to the determi- This otherwise suspicious circumstance, which nation of blood-stains. On weapons alleged to laid the late Duke of Cumberland under some have been used with homicidal intent or effect, suspicion in 1810, was clearly explained when the merest traces of various substances may oc Sellis was proved to be equally dexterous in the casionally be found, and may serve, in the hands use of both hands. A man was found dead in of the man of science, as important clews. A Dr. 1865, in London, under similar circumstances to Lyons has left on record a case in which the Sellis, the left hand having been used to inflict supposition of a person's guilt as a murderer the fatal injury. The unusual situation of the appeared to be materially strengthened by the wound was explained when the deceased was discovery, beneath a bed, of a hatchet to which proved to be a wood-carver by trade, and to have clotted blood and hairs were adherent. The been accustomed to use both hands when at hair, submitted to microscopical examination, was work. A singular and shrewd observation of