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“The Merchant of Venice”- Discussion Questions ACT I-V


1. What causes do Salerio and Salanio suggest for Antonio’s melancholy?
-They suggest that he is sad because he is in love and that his ships might be indanger.

2. What humorous advice does Gratiano offer Antonio?
-He told Antonio to talk because he would forget his own voice.

3. Why does Bassanio want Antonio to loan him more money?
-Bassanio wants Antonio to loan him money because he wants to go on a journey to Belmont to marry Portia.

4. Why is Portia angry with her deceased father?
-Portia is angry with her father because he left a system so the man who choses the right casket gets to marry her. Portia disagrees with this because she can’t chose who she wishes to marry.

5. Why does Nerissa tell Portia she “need not fear” her unwelcome suitors?
-Nerissa tells Portia this because if she ignores or doesn’t acknowledge the unwelcome suitors they will leave her alone.

6. What do Portia and Nerissa think of Bassanio?
-Portia and Neriassa think that he is the most suitable person for Portia to marry out of all the others that tried.

7.According to Shylock, why does he hate Antonio?
-Shylock hates Antonio because he spat on him in a previously and ridicules him and the jews.

8.Why is Shylock indignant over Antonio’s request?
-Shylock was indignant because he felt as if he shouldn’t give them what they want because they treated him poorly.

9. What is Antonio’s response to Shylock’s accusation?
-Antonio’s response to Shylock’s accusation was shocking because he should do it as his job not from personal grudges.

10. In exchange for what does Shylock agree to lend Antonio and Bassanio the money?
-Shylock agrees to lend him money, but he must give Shylock a pound of flesh in returnif the due isn’t paid.


1. Why does Morocco fear Portia will reject him at the outset?
-Morocco thinks he will be rejected by Portia because of his skin color.

2. What is Bassanio’s reservation about Gratiano accompanying him to Belmont?
-Bassanio’s reservation was that Gratiano had to act more mature in this voyage.

3. What is Jessica’s dilemma concerning her father, Shylock?
-Jessica’s dilemma is that she can’t love a Christian and she is ashamed of him.

4. How does Lorenzo plan to disguise Jessica in order to escape from her father?
-Lorenzo plans to disguise Jessica as a boy to escape from her father’s house.

5. Before going to dine with Antonio and Bassanio, what advice does Shylock give his daughter?
-The advice that Shylock gave Jessica was to lock all the doors and not to leave the house.

6. Why does Jessica not want Lorenzo to see her when he arrives at Shylock’s house?
-Jessica didn’t want Lorenzo to she her because she was disguised as a boy and she was embarassed.

7. What is Morocco’s rationle for choosing the gold casket?
-Morocco choose the gold casket because he thought that she is worth nothing less and every suitor wants her.

8. What news has Salerio heard, making him anxious?
-Salerio heard that some ships have sank on a voyage and he fears that they may be Antonio’s .

9. How does Solanio interpret Antonio’s sadness at Bassanio’s departure?
-Solanio says that Antonio is upset because Bassanio is leaving and that he’s losing his bestfriend.

10. Which casket does Aragon choose, and why?
-Aragon choose the silver casket because he thinks he deserves her more than any other suitor.


1. Why, since it won’t result in any financial gain, does Shylock insist on the terms of his bond with Antonio?
-Antonio and Shylock made a deal and if Antonio doesn’t give his bond he must give a pound of flesh and a deal is a deal.

2. What news does Tubal bring Shylock?
-Tubal told Shylock that Antonio’s ships sank and he wouldn’t be able to pay back the bond.

3. Why does Portia want Bassanio to wait before facing the challenge of the three caskets?
-Because Portia wants Bassanio to wait and be with her for a little while so that if he get’s it wrong they still spent time together.

4. Why does Bassanio select the lead casket?
-Bassanio select the lead casket because he thought it was the right one and indeed it was.

5. What does the lead casket contain?
-The lead casket contain Portia picture and a scroll.

6. What doe Portia claim will occur if Bassanio gives up the ring she gave him?
-Portia claim that it will sow that Bassanio doesn’t love her as much as she thought.

7. What does Gratiano reveal after Bassanio solves the riddle of the three caskets?
-Gratiano revealed that Portia would now be Bassanio’s.

8.Why does Portia allow Bassanio to leave before they get married?
-Portia allow him to leave becasue she knows that Antonio is in trouble and that they are best friends.

9. According to Antonio, why won’t the Duke be able to intercede on his behalf?
-Because a bond is a bond and it was a written agreement and it was signed so Antonio must hold up his end of the bargain.

10. What does Portia decide to do at the end of Act III?
-Portia decides to dress up like a man and go to the court for Antonio to help him so that Shylock doesn’t recieve the pound of flesh.


1. What does the Duke request of Shylock?
-The Duke requests that Shylock is to forgive him and come up with a different agreement.

2. What reason does Shylock give for his wanting the pound of Antonio’s flesh?
-That the Jews and Christians should have the same rights. Shylock also mentioned that Antonio always spat on him.

3. Why does Antonio advise his friends to give up attempting to dissuade Shylock?
-Because Antonio knows that Shylock wont back down and that the deal was what it was.

4. Why does Shylock believe the Duke must enforce the terms of the bond?
-Because the bond was made and it should be followed up with no matter what.

5. Why does Portia, disguised as the lawyer, initially conclude that Shylock’s bond must beadhered to?
-Portis disguises herself so she can help Antonio, so that he doesn’t have to give one pound of flesh to Shylock.

6. Although she acknowledges Shylock’s right to a pound of Antonio’s flesh, how does Portia prevent the usurer from acting on it?
-She says that if any drip of christian blood is dripped he Shylock has the right to die.

7. Why is Shylock stripped of his possessions?
-Because he tried to murder or harm a christian.

8. Apart from the financial conditions, what does Antonio’s new arrangement demand of Shylock?
-He doubles his money and Antonio does not lose one pound of flesh, and half of the money goes to Jessica.

9. What does the disguised Portia demand from Bassanio for her services?
-She demands the ring that she gave to him.

10. Why is Bassanio reluctant to give up the ring?
-Because it was the ring his wife gave him showing her love, and she made him promise that he wouldn’t give it away or loose it no matter what.


1.What message does Stephano deliver to Lorenzo and Jessica?
-The message was that Portia and Nerissa have arrived.

2.What opinion does Lorenzo hold of men who don’t like music?
-Lorenzo thinks that they feel no emotion of love.

3.What does Portia order her household not to do?
-Portia orders that they take no being of the absence.

4.To whom does Nerissa claim to believe Gratiano gave his ring?
-Nerissa belives that Gratiano gave it to another woman.

5.What does Portia threaten when Bassanio admits he gave the ring away?
-She threatens him that she will not see or talk to him until the ring is returned.

6.What does Portia claim she will do if she encounters the doctor to whom Bassanio gave the ring?
-She says if she sees the doctor with her ring the doctor must lay with her.

7.How does Antonio attempt to placate Portia?
-By telling her he witnessed give the ring to the clerk.

8.What does Portia offer Bassanio to seal the new promise?
-Another ring.

9.What secret does Portia reveal to the company?
-That she was infact the doctor and Nerissa was the clerk.

10.What good news does Portia tell Antonio?
-That shylock’s gift is that after he dies all his possessions go to him.


  • #   Rehpotsirhc on 11.29.12 at 4:15 pm     

    Dude dis is epic!!!! I wuv this

  • #   lol on 05.01.14 at 4:26 am     


  • #   cool guy 77 on 05.01.14 at 4:27 am     

    nice work mujhe pasand agaya and nicee very so sup yeah im cool guy working on merchant of venice wow

  • #   Ayan Ashraf on 05.01.14 at 4:29 am     

    wooooooooooow i english reading first time wooooooooooow bro not knowing to work how u do this?

  • #   chris on 05.18.14 at 11:55 am     

    The last question of act 5. Its answer is wrong

  • #   Michael Young on 05.18.14 at 3:28 pm     

    Sorry Chris. I did this as a class assignment in the 10th grade. I’m a sophomore in college now. I haven’t read the merchant of Venice in years. Feel free to reply with the correct answer and I’ll update it.

  • #   maddy jhonson on 06.20.14 at 7:33 am     

    wow amazing , it helprd me a lot

  • #   maddy jhonson on 06.20.14 at 7:33 am     

    great work

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