Key moments | The Merchant of Venice | Royal Shakespeare Company
What is the symbolism of rings in The Merchant of Venice? Rings are used to seal the marriage between Portia and Bassanio, Nerissa and Gratiano, but the. RELATIONSHIPS IN THE MERCHANT OF VENICE' by A.H. GAGIANO Shylock; Portia's - admittedly a much debated point - . Gratiano's 'friendly' advice -. Shylock: The Jewish merchant of Venice who lends Antonio the money on . How does Portia and Nerissa's relationship differ from Antonio and Bassanio's? Journal/discussion topic: What advice have you given to someone else that you.
Disguised as a boy, Jessica joins her lover Lorenzo in the street and they leave for the masque. Gratiano parts from his companions to accompany Bassanio on the voyage to Belmont. Movingly he explains that a Jew is the same as other men with the same feelings and needs. Bassanio chooses his casket and discovers his fortune Act 3 Scene 2 In Belmont, Portia urges Bassanio to wait a day or two before choosing the casket, which will determine whether he can marry her or not, but he is determined to proceed.
To the accompaniment of music, Bassanio selects from the gold, silver and lead caskets. Portia gives Bassanio a ring to seal the match and makes him promise never to part with it. Lorenzo, Jessica and Salerio arrive from Venice with a letter for Bassanio from Antonio, in which he explains that he is ruined and Shylock is determined to exact his revenge by demanding his pound of flesh according to the bond.
She suggests that they settle with Shylock, even if that means paying him twenty time the value of the bond. Bassanio leaves for Venice but vows to return with all speed.
Shylock demands justice Act 4 Scene 1 The Duke presides over the courtroom in Venice, where Shylock demands the penalty from Antonio for defaulting on the bond. Shylock resolutely demands justice according Venetian law. The Duke has sent for Bellario, a legal expert from Padua, but learns from a letter that he is ill so has sent a young man, Balthasar, in his place.
Portia, disguised as Balthasar, enters the courtroom accompanied by her clerk Nerissa in disguise. Bassanio bids farewell to Antonio, who is told to prepare himself for the penalty. Outwitted, Shylock prepares to leave the courtroom but is called back to face the penalty for threatening the life of a Venetian citizen. He will be executed and all his goods will be divided between Antonio and the state and unless he asks the Duke for mercy.
Shylock agrees and leaves the courtroom. Bassanio explains that he promised his wife never to part with the ring but Antonio urges him to hand it over, so reluctantly he gives it to Gratiano to deliver to Balthasar.The Merchant Of Venice 2004 Shylock speech) HD
A messenger arrives to tell them that Portia and Nerissa will be with them presently. Lancelet Gobbo informs them that Bassano and Gratiano will also be home soon. They exchange romantic metaphors, invoking in turn characters from classical literature: No sooner has Stephano informed them that Portia and Nerissa will soon arrive than Gobbo comes with the same news for Bassanio and Gratiano. They decide to await the arrivals in the gardens, and ask Stephano to fetch his instrument and play for them.
The man that hath no music in himself, Nor is not moved with concord of sweet sounds, Is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils; — Lorenzo, The Merchant of Venice  Portia and Nerissa enter, followed shortly by Bassanio, Antonio, and Gratiano. After they are all reunited, Nerissa hands Lorenzo a deed of gift from Shylock, won in the trial, giving Jessica all of his wealth upon his death. Fled with a Christian! O, my Christian ducats! In this version it is Munday's Jessica analogue, Brisana, who pleads the case first in the courtroom scene, followed by Cornelia, the Portia analogue.
The Christian in love with a Jewess appears frequently in exemplum from the 13th to the 15th century. However, in this story the Christian lover flees alone with the treasure.
His daughter, Floripas, proceeds to murder her governess for refusing to help feed the prisoners; bashes the jailer's head in with his keychain when he refuses to let her see the prisoners; manipulates her father into giving her responsibility for them; brings them to her tower, and treats them as royalty; does the same for the remaining ten of the Twelve Peers when they are captured too; helps the Peers murder Sir Lucafere, King of Baldas when he surprises them; urges the Peers to attack her father and his knights at supper to cover up the murder; when her father escapes and attacks the Peers in her tower, she assists in the defence; then she converts to Christianity and is betrothed to Guy of Burgundy; and finally, she and her brother, Fierabras decide that there is no point trying to convert their father to Christianity so he should be executed instead.
The reason for the cruelty of the Sultan's two children is quite obvious. In the romances there are two sides: Once Floripas and Ferumbras had joined the 'good' side, they had to become implacable enemies of the Sultan. There was no question of filial duty or filial love; one was either a Saracen or a Christian, and that was all there was to it.
There is not any other moral standard for the characters.
Jessica (The Merchant of Venice) | Revolvy
Religion, race, and gender[ edit ] Critical history[ edit ] Literary critics have historically viewed the character negatively, highlighting her theft of her father's gold, her betrayal of his trust, and her apparently selfish motivations and aimless behaviour.
In her survey, "In Defense of Jessica: In the interim between the signing of the bond and its falling due this daughter, this Jessica, has wickedly and most unfilially betrayed him.
Quite without heart, on worse than an animal instinct—pilfering to be carnal—she betrays her father to be a light-of-lucre carefully weighted with her sire's ducats. In such a reading Jessica's actions amount to abandoning her father and betraying him to his enemies. She was still viewed as inhabiting primarily negative values, in contrast with the positive values associated with Portia, Bassanio, and Antonio. The relationship of Jessica and Lorenzo to the primary lovers, Portia and Bassanio, consistently is contrastive and negative: Slights highlights comedies where children rebel against a miserly father, or romances where daughters defy a repressive father for love.
These conventions would be familiar for both Shakespeare and an Elizabethan theatre audience, and, indeed, modern audiences tend to accept Jessica's actions as natural within the context of the plot.
Her escape from Shylock's repressive household to Belmont a quest for freedom, and from misfortune to happiness. Similarly, in Salernitano's 14th novella, the daughter makes off with her father's money, to the same effect. It ranks him with the miserly fathers in Elizabethan and classical comedies, who are only fit to be dupes of their children ….
The first critical notice of Jessica in the 18th century was made by William Warburtonwho commented on the line in Act 5, Scene 1: This changed the meaning, as an acerbic Malone points out: I should not have attempted to explain so easy a passage, if the ignorant editor of the second folio, thinking probably that the word get must necessarily mean beget, had not altered the text, and substituted did in the place of do, the reading of all the old and authentick editions; in which he has been copied by every subsequent editor.
Launcelot is not talking about Jessica's father, but about her future husband. I am aware that, in a subsequent scene, he says to Jessica, 'Marry, you may partly hope your father got you not;' but he is now on another subject.
Malone's position turned out to be somewhat controversial. In his revised edition in[d] multiple notes appeared in response. The first, by George Steevensoffers an alternate reading of the passage: Malone, however, supposes him to mean only—carry thee away from thy father's house. Malone charges the editor of the second folio so strongly with ignorance, I have no doubt but that did is the true reading, as it is clearly better sense than that which he has adopted.
- The other couples in the story…
- Jessica (The Merchant of Venice)
Launcelot does not mean to foretell the fate of Jessica, but judges, from her lovely disposition, that she must have been begotten by a christian, not by such a brute as Shylock: At further issue was Malone's tarring of all the previous editors with the same brush, for which Steevens was particularly sore.
Malone's response was simply that "In answer to Mr. Steevens, I have to state that I printed this play inand that Mr. Reed's edition did not appear till