Merchant of Venice Act 3 2nd one

What gossip are Solario and Solanio talking about as the scene opens? Solario and Solanio heard that one of Antonio’s ships sunk in the English Channel and they are worried about him.
What is Shylock update about as he enters? Shylock’s daughter has rebelled and taken off with a Christian (Lorenzo). She has taken his jewels and money.
What are Shylock’s many reasons for wanting revenge against Antonio? Antonio has disgraced him and cost him a lot of money. He scorned Jews and business dealings and has caused friends to turn against him. He has been wronged and wants revenge.
Skylock’s speech which begins with “Hath not a Jew eyes?” is often called “Shylock’s Defense.” Is it an attempt to alter the audience’s opinion of him? Is it successful? Explain. Shylock’s Defense is an eloquent speech to show that Jews are just as human as everyone else and should be treated with respect, just like everyone else.
What does Shylock value more: his daughter or his ducats? What is your proof? Shylock says that he wishes his daughter was dead at his feet with jewels in her ears. Is this Shylock or blind rage? Shylock’s first words in the play were about money. However, look at how he has been treated. There is evidence to suggest Shylock is a villain and that Shylock is a victim.
Tubal brings Shylock good news and bad news. What is it? The good news (for Shylock) is that Antonio has lost a ship near North Africa and will likely go bankrupt. The bad news is that Jessica spent 80 ducats and traded a ring (which was a present from Shylock to his wife) for a monkey. This drives Shylock mad.
At the beginning of Act 3, Scene 2 Portia asks something a bit strange of Bassanio. Why would she do this? Portia asks Bassanio not to choose a casket for a month or two. This way, she can spend time with him even if he chooses the wrong casket. She doesn’t want to lose him.
What is the basis of Bassanio’s refusal to choose the gold casket? Provide an example of his logic. Bassanio doesn’t choose the gold casket because he says that appearances are often deceiving (this will become ironic later on). Things are not always as they appear (including him – he looks rich but is not). He says cowards may look like Hercules/beauty is often created with make-up.
Explain Bassanio’s allusion (a reference to another literary work) to Midas in line 102. The allusion is to King Midas. Midas was granted a wish and everything he touched turned to gold (it was a blessing and a curse). Therefore, gold can be dangerous.
What impresses Bassanio about what he finds in the lead casket? Provide at least one detail. The portrait of Portia looks very real (her eyes could have blinded the painter).
Besides herself, her wealth, her servants, and her house, what does Portia give to Bassanio? What stipulation does she attach to the gift? Portia gives Bassanio a ring. If he takes it off, he no longer loves her and she no longer loves him. Hey! Didn’t poor Shylock just lose a ring? It seems almost cruel to see Bassanio and Portia so happy right now. This ring forms a new plot in the play … the ring plot.
What news does Gratiano provide? What bet does he want to make? Now that Bassiano and Portia will marry, Gratiano and Nerissa will marry. It makes sense now why Nerissa was rooting for Bassiano.
What news does Bassanio read in the letter? What does Salerio add? All of Antonio’s ships have wrecked. Shylock is demanding justice. He wouldn’t take money even if it was offered. He wants his “bond.”
What is Portia’s reaction to the situation in Venice? What impression do you have of her at this point? Portia tells Bassanio to offer 6,000 or 12,000 or 36,000 ducats to ensure Antonio’s safety. She says they will marry first and then Bassanio can go straight to Venice to save Antonio and bring him to Belmont. She tells him to leave right away. She seems very generous.
Is Bassanio in love with money as much as Shylock? This is a difficult question. Bassanio now has a much money as he could want … but he does drop everything to go to Antonio.
What is another reason Antonio offers to explain Shylock’s hatred? Antonio often helped those who could not pay their debts to Shylock so he hates him for that.
According to Antonio, why must the forfeiture of a pound of flesh be paid? Venice is an international trading center. The law must be followed strictly because the city’s prosperity depends on it. A bad precedent is set if they do not uphold the law (people would lose confidence).
Much of this play has to do with Christian vs. Jewish standards of morality. What takes precedence in Venetian law, where commerce is king? Money takes precedence over friendship, religion … everything.
What does Portia ask of Lorenzo? Why? Portia asks Lorenzo to look after her house while she and Nerissa pray and contemplate in a monastery until Bassanio and Gratiano come back.
What errand does Portia give to Balthazar? Portia asks Balthazar to go to her cousin in Padua and bring back books and clothes (then bring them to the ferry in Venice).
What plan does Portia share with Nerissa? Portia wants to go to Venice to see their husbands.
Who are what were Scylla and Charybdis? What does it mean to be between the two? Scylla and Charybdis were monsters in Greek mythology. They destroyed passing ships on rocks and in whirlpools. This means that the person has a difficult choice (is between a rock and a hard place).
Why does Lancelot jokingly anticipate an increase in the price of pork? Jessica has become a Christian. If all the Jews convert, there will be more people eating pork. The shortage will cause a price increase.
Provide at least one example of a pun (a play on words) in this scene. Some examples of puns are on the words “moor” and “more.” Also “digest” means to eat and to think about something.

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