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Portia

Merchant of Venice

Wives and Troubled Husbands

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Lady Percy’s plea to Hotspur in Henry IV, Part 1, is similar to Portia’s plea to Brutus in Julius Caesar. In both a wife is pleading with her husband to disclose the thoughts that seem to trouble him deeply. A difference, however, is that some psychologists consider Lady Percy’s speech a clinical description of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
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The Sadness of the Merchant

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In the opening lines of The Merchant of Venice, the young merchant Antonio is questioned by his friends about his sadness. His friends Salarino, Solanio and Gratiano attempt to determine why Antonio is sad. Antonio denies that his sadness is about his concern for his investments in merchandise at sea. When asked if his melancholy is because he is in love,
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Appearance and Prejudice

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One of Shakespeare’s most frequent themes is appearance versus reality. This theme manifests itself in different ways for different purposes. In Merchant of Venice (2.2.181), Bassanio says to Gratiano:

Thou art too wild, too rude and bold of voice—
Parts that become thee happily enough,
And in such eyes as ours appear not faults.
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By my troth, Nerissa, my little body is aweary of this great world

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Portia
By my troth, Nerissa, my little body is aweary
of this great world.
Nerissa
You would be, sweet madam, if your miseries
were in the same abundance as your good fortunes
are. And yet, for aught I see, they are as sick that
surfeit with too much as they that starve with
nothing.

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Whiles we shut the gate upon one wooer

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Whiles we shut the gate upon one wooer, another knocks at the door.
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Source:
Act 1
Scene 2
Line 133

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Spoken by:

Portia! What mean you? Wherefore rise you now?

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Brutus
Portia! What mean you? Wherefore rise you now?Hyperbaton & Quaesitio
It is not for your health thus to commit
Your weak condition to the raw cold morning.
Portia
Nor for yours neither.Anapodoton You’ve ungently, Brutus,
Stole from my bed. And yesternight at supper
You suddenly arose and walked about,
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Source:
Act 2
Scene 1
Line 254

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Spoken by:
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Figures of Speech:
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Connected Notes:
Wives and Troubled Husbands

Kneel not, gentle Portia

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Brutus
Kneel not, gentle Portia.
Portia
I should not need, if you were gentle Brutus.Antanaclesis

Within the bond of marriage, tell me, Brutus,
Is it excepted I should know no secrets
That appertain to you? Am I yourself
But, as it were, in sort or limitation,
To keep with you at meals,

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Source:
Act 2
Scene 1
Line 300

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Figures of Speech:
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Thus hath the candle singed the moth

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Portia
Thus hath the candle singed the moth
O, these deliberate fools, when they do choose,
They have the wisdom by their wit to lose.
Nerissa
The ancient saying is no heresy:
Hanging and wiving goes by destiny.
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Source:
Act 2
Scene 9
Line 85

Source Type:

Spoken by:
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Let me choose, For as I am, I live upon the rack

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Bassanio
Let me choose,
For as I am, I live upon the rack.
Portia
Upon the rack, Bassanio? Then confess
What treason there is mingled with your love.
Bassanio
None but that ugly treason of mistrust,
Which makes me fear th’ enjoying of my love.
There may as well be amity and life
‘Tween snow and fire,
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Let music sound while he doth make his choice

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Let music sound while he doth make his choice.
Then if he lose he makes a swanlike end,
Fading in music. That the comparison
May stand more proper, my eye shall be the stream
And wat’ry deathbed for him. He may win,
And what is music then? Then music is
Even as the flourish when true subjects bow
To a new-crownèd monarch.
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Source:
Act 3
Scene 2
Line 45

Source Type:

Spoken by:

How all the other passions fleet to air

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How all the other passions fleet to air,
As doubtful thoughts and rash embraced despair,
And shudd’ring fear, and green-eyed jealousy!
O love, be moderate, allay thy ecstasy,
In measure rain thy joy, scant this excess!
I feel too much thy blessing. Make it less,
For fear I surfeit.
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Source:
Act 3
Scene 2
Line 111

Source Type:

Spoken by:

You see me, Lord Bassanio, where I stand

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You see me, Lord Bassanio, where I stand,
Such as I am. Though for myself alone
I would not be ambitious in my wish
To wish myself much better, yet for you
I would be trebled twenty times myself,
A thousand times more fair, ten thousand times
More rich, that only to stand high in your account
I might in virtues,
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Source:
Act 3
Scene 2
Line 153

Source Type:

Spoken by:

You see me, Lord Bassanio, where I stand

Read the Quote

You see me, Lord Bassanio, where I stand,
Such as I am. Though for myself alone
I would not be ambitious in my wish
To wish myself much better, yet for you
I would be trebled twenty times myself,
A thousand times more fair, ten thousand times
More rich, that only to stand high in your account,
I might in virtues,
… continue reading this quote

Source:
Act 3
Scene 2
Line 153

Source Type:

Spoken by: