In act 4 scene 1 (the courtroom scene) Portia disguises herself as a male lawyer, but she acts sarcastic and hypocritical towards the jew (Shylock). “Do you confess to the bond? Then must the Jew be merciful.” Portia asks Antonio to admit he agreed to the bond. When Antonio confesses she asks him if he expects Shylock to be merciful, in a joking, hypocritical way. I think Shakespeare did this so you can see how the Christians thought it was so funny and unusual for a jew to go to court to get his justice.
Although Shylock has lost his daughter and half his gold and jewels he seems very determined to kill Antonio. Portia “Are there balance here to weigh the flesh?”
Shylock “I have them ready.”
Portia “Have by some surgeon Shylock, on your charge, to stop his, wounds, lest he do bleed to death.”
Shylock “Is it so nominated in the bond?” It sounds almost like Shylock was planning to kill Antonio all along. I think Shakespeare did this to show how extreme jews were willing to go, to get revenge on Christians at any opportunity they got. Shylock acts like he only cares about getting his payment even if it means the death of Antonio. Shylock’s character speaks in a sinister unmerciful... [continues]
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