An analysis of the caskets of fortune

Much has happened since the departure of Bassanio. At Belmont the stately Prince of Morocco has made his choice and failed, and the solemn Arragon has followed with no better fate. In Venice Shylock, maddened by his double loss, has raged through the streets, a rabble of boys at his heels, and Tubal has had time to search for the runaways as far as Genoa and back.

An analysis of the caskets of fortune

In the town of Belmont, not far from Venice, there lives a wealthy young woman named Portia, who is famous for her beauty. If he can secure some money, Bassanio declares, he is sure he can win her as his wife.

Antonio replies that he has no funds at hand with which to supply his friend, as they are all invested in the ships he has at sea, but that he will attempt to borrow money for him in Venice.

Portia has many suitors for her hand. In case of failure, the suitors are compelled to swear never to reveal which casket they chose and never to woo another woman. Four of her suitors, seeing they cannot win her except under the conditions of the will, depart.

A fifth, a Moor, decides to take his chances. The unfortunate man chooses the golden casket, which contains a skull and a mocking message. The prince of Arragon is the next suitor to try his luck.

He chooses the silver casket, only to learn from the note it holds that he is a fool. True to his promise to Bassanio, Antonio arranges to borrow three thousand ducats from Shylock, a wealthy Jew.

Antonio is to have the use of the money for three months. He is confident that he will never fall into the power of the Jew, who hates Antonio because he often lends money to others without charging the interest Shylock demands. That night, Bassanio plans a feast and a masque.

In conspiracy with his friend, Lorenzo, he invites Shylock to be his guest. Shylock is cheated not only of his daughter and his ducats but also of his entertainment, for the wind suddenly changes and Bassanio sets sail for Belmont.

As the days pass, the Jew begins to hear news of mingled good and bad fortune.

An analysis of the caskets of fortune

In Genoa, Jessica and Lorenzo are lavishly spending the money she took with her. Portia, much taken with Bassanio when he comes to woo her, will have him wait before he tries to pick the right casket. Sure that he will fail as the others did, she hopes to have his company a little while longer.

Bassanio, however, is impatient to try his luck. Not deceived by the ornateness of the gold and silver caskets, and philosophizing that true virtue is inward virtue, he chooses the lead box.

In it is a portrait of Portia. To seal their engagement, The entire section is 1, words.Notice that unlike Portia's caskets, from which suitors must choose lead instead of gold or silver, Jessica chooses a casket full of gold and silver to throw to Lorenzo.

In Jessica's case, the money is what makes Lorenzo's labors "worth the pains.". Unlike most editing & proofreading services, we edit for everything: grammar, spelling, punctuation, idea flow, sentence structure, & more. Get started now!

MOROCCO. Even for that I thank you. Therefore I pray you lead me to the caskets To try my fortune. By this scimitar That slew the Sophy and a Persian prince That won three fields of Sultan Solyman, I would o'erstare the sternest eyes that look, Outbrave the heart most daring on the earth, Pluck the young sucking cubs from the she-bear, Yea, mock the lion when he roars for prey, To win the lady.

Portia is bound by a clause in her father's will, which obligates her to marry whoever solves the so-called riddle of the caskets, by choosing the correct chest from one of gold, one of silver, and one of lead. Next: The Merchant of Venice, Act 3, Scene 3 _____ Explanatory Notes for Act 3, Scene 2 From The Merchant of Venice.

Shakespeare's Comedy The Merchant of Venice - Bassanio picks the lead casket

Ed. Felix E. Schelling. New York: American Book Co. Much has happened since the departure of Bassanio. At Belmont the stately Prince of Morocco has made his choice and failed, and the solemn Arragon has followed with no .

As is typical of William Shakespeare’s comedies, The Merchant of Venice contains three interrelated plots. The merchant of the play’s title, Antonio, has cast his fortune into several ships.

An analysis of the caskets of fortune