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The Merchant of Venice Act 4 Scene 2 Summary Workbook Answers

The Merchant of Venice Act 4 Scene 2 Summary

The scene opens in a street of Venice. Portia sends Nerissa to look for Shylock’s house so that the deed can be signed which gives Lorenzo and Jessica Shylock’s property. Gratiano then enters the scene presenting Bassanio’s ring to Portia. Nerissa also demands for Gratiano’s ring which he gives her thinking that the clerk deserves a gift as much as the lawyer (Portia). Now both the ladies have their husband’s rings. Portia then asks Gratiano to help Nerissa find Shylock’s house. The women plan to reach Belmont a day before their husbands can reach therefore they decline the dinner invitation.

The Merchant of Venice Act 4 Scene 2 Summary Word Meanings

  1. this deed – the document in which he promises to make Lorenzo his heir
  2. upon more advice – having thought more about the matter
  3. thou may’st – you can
  4. warrant – assure
  5. old – a lot of
  6. out them – put them to shame
  7. tarry – wait.

The Merchant of Venice Act 4 Scene 2 Summary Questions and Answers

1. Portia :
Inquire the Jew’s house out, give him this deed,
And let him sign it We’ll away tonight,
And be a day before our husbands home :
This deed will be well welcome to Lorenzo.

Question 1.
Who are the two people in conversation? Who is the Jew? Why are they looking for his house?
The two people in the conversation are Portia, dressed as a lawyer and Nerissa, dressed as her clerk. Both are in the garb of men. The Jew is the money lender, Shylock, who lends money on interest and is an unfeeling man. Since he has lost the case against Antonio he must sign a deed for which they are looking for his house.

Question 2.
What is in the deed? What brought about this deed?
Shylock cannot cut a pound of flesh from Antonio’s body without shedding a drop of blood hence, he has no choice but to let go of his bond and accept the decision of the court. According to the law of Venice, half of Shylock’s property would go to the state of Venice and the other half would go to Antonio. Antonio in turn lets go of his half and makes Shylock sign a bond in which he must bequeath Antonio’s half to his daughter, Jessica and son-in-law, Lorenzo.

Question 3.
Who are the husbands? Why is the speaker so eager to reach home before the husbands? Where is the home?
Gratiano, Nerissa’s husband and Bassanio, Portia’s husband are being spoken of here. Portia, the speaker along with Nerissa, her lady-in-waiting, are eager to reach home before their husbands because the husbands are unaware of their wives’ disguise and they still want to keep it a secret from their husbands. They are all bound for Belmont.

Question 4.
Who is Lorenzo and why will he be happy to see the deed?
Lorenzo is Jessica’s husband, a Christian and Jessica, being Shylock’s daughter is a Jew. Being the owner of such a large property, which is least expected, would definitely make him happy.

Question 5.
Who enters the scene, hereafter? What transpires between this person and the speaker?
Gratiano, Nerissa’s husband, enters the scene. Gratiano offers Bassanio’s ring to Portia and invites her to dinner. Portia accepts the ring, very happily but refuses the invitation for dinner, saying that she needs to reach Padua at the earliest. She then requests Gratiano to show Shylock’s house to Nerissa, her clerk.