Merchant of Venice

What does Antonio do for a living. Merchant
Why is Antonio in low spirits? He is worried about Bassanio and his future.
Why does Bassanio want to borrow money from Antonio? Bassanio wants the money to travel to Belmont to woo Portia, marry her, then take her money and pay back his debts.
What do you think, at this point, of Bassanio’s motive for wanting to marry Portia? Her money
How is Portia characterized in Scene two? Witty, funny, opinionated, independent
Why does Shakespeare use the word “choose” so often? It’s irony. Portia can’t really choose who she wants to marry because her father is choosing for her by making them pick caskets.
Why do Portia and Nerissa review the suitors who have come to court Portia? To entertain the audience. They are being stereotypical against each suitor which would have made the Elizabethan audience laugh.
Why do you think Shylock has a long speech on ships (lines 20-26) in scene three? It shows what could possibly happen to the ships. Foreshadow.
Give details of the bond of Shylock and Antonio. Shylock is going to give Antonio three thousand ducats. In three months time if Antonio hasn’t paid him back, Shylock is allowed to cut off a pound of his flesh. There is no interest in this deal.
Why are Shylock and Antonio so antagonistic toward one another? Antonio and Shylock do not like each other because of their different religions and in that time, Antonio was allowed to be horrible to Shylock.
Why does Antonio agree to the terms of the “merry bond”? Antonio is confident that his ships will return from sea with good fortune if Bassanio doesn’t marry Portia and pay him back. He is desperate to save Bassanio.
What does Bassanio’s reluctance to allow Antonio to agree to Shylock’s bond about him? It shows that Bassanio has little compassion for others and isn’t completely selfish.
What new element of the plot is added to the play in scene three? Jessica is going to elope with Lorenzo, ending her Judaism and converting into a Christian.
What future problems could occur from Jessica’s letter to Lorenzo? Somebody (notably Shylock) could find the letter. Any written thing is evidence.
What is ironic about Shylock’s leaving his keys with his daughter? He’s telling his daughter to stay in and not associate with the Christians when all she wants to do is become one. She is the thief.
Why is Shylock glad to see Lancelot leave his household to go to work for Bassanio? Shylock’s glad because all he did was eat and sleep all day.
Should Jessica be regarded as a thief for taking the money with her when she elopes with Lorenzo? Yes Jessica should be regarded as a thief because the money wasn’t hers to take, it should’ve been a gift.
As scene six closes, why does Antonio announce that there will be no masque that night? The winds have changed and they have to leave for Belmont that night.
What is the dramatic function of scene seven? To introduce us to the caskets.
Why does the Prince of Morroco chose the gold casket over the others? The inscription said what every man desires and he thinks that this means Portia. Everything that is gold is the best, so naturally, the picture should be in the best casket.
What does the servants announcement of the next suitor at the end of Act 2 lead the audience to expect? That Bassanio is coming
After reading Act 2 Scene 7, does Portia’s father’s plan for her marriage seem reasonable to you? Why or why not? If you chose the wrong one, you could be going into the relationship for the wrong reasons. Ex/ if you chose the gold one, you could be just going after her gold.
Why is Shylock so upset by Jessica’s elopement? Do you think Jessica was justified in her actions? She lefts with his moneyLorenzo is a ChristianI think she should be able to chose who she wants to marry and her father doesn’t seem to care for her as much as a father shouldHe cried more about his money then he did his daughter leaving
What is the effect of Shylock’s long “I am a Jew” speech in the first scene? The effect of this speech is to make the reader sympathize Shylock. It shows that he has been mistreated for so long.
How does Shakespeare keep from making Shylock into too sympathetic a character in scene one? He talks more about losing his money than losing his daughter. He said he wished his daughter was dead.
What is the theme of Bassanio’s long speech before he makes his choice of the caskets? The them is don’t judge a book by it’s cover.
Why can’t the Duke do nothing to prevent Shylock’s claiming his bond? It would damage Venice’s reputation as a just state in which the rights of all traders are protected.
How does Portia explain her departure from Belmont to Lorenzo? She says that her and Nerissa are going to a nunnery to pray for their husbands’ safe return.
Why does Shylock want Antonio’s flesh if he can’t have his money? Do you sympathize with his point of view? Explain and give a quote to back this up. He wants a pound of flesh as revenge for Antonio’s mistreatment towards him. I do sympathize him. It’s not his fault that he is Jewish. Antonio “hath disgraced [him]” and I think Shylock deserves a bit of justice just maybe not as extreme as a pound of flesh.
What appeal does the Duke of Venice make to Shylock as the trial opens? What is his response? The Duke wants Shylock to forget the bond and let Antonio free of his debt, but Shylock refuses.
Describe the unfolding of Portia’s argument in the trial? Because of the law:Shylock can not let any of Antonio’s blood spill because of the wording of the bondOnly and exactly a pound of flesh can be cut off from his bodySince Shylock is an alien, he cannot attempt to kill a citizen
When Shylock relents and says that he will take the money instead of the pound of flesh, why is he denied? Shylock agreed that he would not take any money from Antonio in the bond.
What kind of mercy does the court show Shylock? Because the Duke and Antonio are “merciful” Christians, they aren’t going to kill Shylock as long as he gives up all his money and converses into a Christian.
How would the audience of Shakespeare’s day have regarded Shylock’s conversion? Good and justified
Why does Portia (the young lawyer) demand the ring of Bassanio for payment? As payback to Bassanio for saying that he loves Antonio more than his wife.
What is the mood as Act 5 opens? Happy
How is the ring plot in Act 5 enhanced by dramatic irony? We know that the girls were the lawyer and the clerk, that they didn’t sleep with these characters and that they have the rings. We found it funny.
How is the intrigue of the rings finally resolved? They confess