THE MERCHANT OF VENICE
The Merchant of Venice is composed by two plots: the primary plot talks about the dispute on money matters where Antonio faces the Jewish moneylender Shylock, the second is the choice of a husband by lady Portia, a rich woman who lives in Belmont.The first act starts in a street in Venice, where we first see Antonio talking to his friends, Salerio and Solano. He tells them that he invested all his money in foreign trade. In this moment three new characters arrive, Bassanio, who will travel to Belmont to woo Portia, Gratiano and Lorenzo, who will escape with Shylock’s daughter, Jessica. Meanwhile Portia is in her estate, talking to her servant and explaining her that according to her dead father’s will, her suitors must undergo a test in order to marry her: they have to choose among three caskets of gold, silver or lead.
In Venice, Bassanio needs some money, and he decides to ask Shylock, but Antonio tries to persuade his friend to let it go. Despite all, Bassanio gets three thousand ducats from Shylock, but if in three months he fails to return the money, then Antonio must give the moneylender a pound of his flesh. The second act starts in Belmont with two of Portia’s suitors. The Prince of Morocco chooses the golden chest but he finds an image of the death inside it, the Prince of Arragon finds a blinking idiot in the silver casket, then it’ s Bassanio’s turn. Meanwhile, at Shylock’s house Jessica gives her servant a letter, which he must deliver to Lorenzo.