List iconThe Merchant of Venice:
Act 2, scene 8
List icon

The Merchant of Venice
Act 2, scene 8



Characters in the Play

Entire Play

Antonio, the merchant in The Merchant of Venice, secures a loan from Shylock for his friend Bassanio, who seeks to court…

Act 1, scene 1

Antonio, a Venetian merchant, has invested all his wealth in trading expeditions. Bassanio, his friend and kinsman, asks him for…

Act 1, scene 2

At Portia’s estate of Belmont, Portia and Nerissa talk over Portia’s frustration at being unable to choose her own husband….

Act 1, scene 3

In Venice Bassanio goes to Shylock, a Jewish moneylender, to borrow, in Antonio’s name, 3,000 ducats. Shylock hates Antonio but…

Act 2, scene 1

At Belmont the Prince of Morocco greets Portia, who tells him the terms of the contest: if he chooses the…

Act 2, scene 2

In Venice Shylock’s servant, Lancelet Gobbo, debates whether he should find a new master. Lancelet’s father comes in search of…

Act 2, scene 3

Jessica, Shylock’s daughter, says good-bye to Lancelet and gives him a letter for Lorenzo, a friend of Bassanio. In a…

Act 2, scene 4

Lorenzo, Gratiano, Solanio, and Salarino try to arrange a masque for Bassanio’s dinner that night. Lancelet brings Lorenzo Jessica’s letter…

Act 2, scene 5

Lancelet brings Shylock an invitation to dinner at Bassanio’s. Shylock grudgingly accepts and commands Jessica to guard their house carefully….

Act 2, scene 6

Gratiano and Salarino wait for Lorenzo near Shylock’s house. As soon as Lorenzo arrives, he calls Jessica, who throws him…

Act 2, scene 7

At Belmont the Prince of Morocco attempts to choose the right chest and win Portia. He picks the gold one…

Act 2, scene 8

In Venice Solanio and Salarino discuss the latest news: Shylock’s torment over the loss of his daughter and the treasures…

Act 2, scene 9

At Belmont the Prince of Arragon attempts to win Portia by choosing the silver chest, but finds in it the…

Act 3, scene 1

In Venice Solanio and Salarino have learned that the Italian ship wrecked in the English Channel was Antonio’s. Shylock enters…

Act 3, scene 2

Portia advises Bassanio to postpone choosing for fear he should make the wrong choice. Bassanio declares himself unable to live…

Act 3, scene 3

Antonio seeks out Shylock in an effort to get the moneylender to listen to him. But Shylock insists that the…

Act 3, scene 4

Portia entrusts the management of her household to Lorenzo and pretends to leave with Nerissa for a house of an…

Act 3, scene 5

Lancelet, the clown, makes jokes at the expense of Jessica and then Lorenzo. Jessica praises Portia and jokes with Lorenzo.

Act 4, scene 1

In court at Venice, Shylock demands that the terms of his bond be fulfilled. Portia enters as a doctor of…

Act 4, scene 2

Gratiano gives the disguised Portia Bassanio’s ring. Nerissa decides to try to obtain from Gratiano the ring that she had…

Act 5, scene 1

Portia and Nerissa return to Belmont. When Bassanio and Gratiano also return, bringing Antonio with them, Portia and Nerissa “discover”…

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Scene 8
Enter Salarino and Solanio.

 Why, man, I saw Bassanio under sail;
 With him is Gratiano gone along;
 And in their ship I am sure Lorenzo is not.
 The villain Jew with outcries raised the Duke,
5 Who went with him to search Bassanio’s ship.
 He came too late; the ship was under sail.

The Merchant of Venice
ACT 2. SC. 8

 But there the Duke was given to understand
 That in a gondola were seen together
 Lorenzo and his amorous Jessica.
10 Besides, Antonio certified the Duke
 They were not with Bassanio in his ship.
 I never heard a passion so confused,
 So strange, outrageous, and so variable
 As the dog Jew did utter in the streets.
15 “My daughter, O my ducats, O my daughter!
 Fled with a Christian! O my Christian ducats!
 Justice, the law, my ducats, and my daughter,
 A sealèd bag, two sealèd bags of ducats,
 Of double ducats, stol’n from me by my daughter,
20 And jewels—two stones, two rich and precious
 Stol’n by my daughter! Justice! Find the girl!
 She hath the stones upon her, and the ducats.”
 Why, all the boys in Venice follow him,
25 Crying “His stones, his daughter, and his ducats.”
 Let good Antonio look he keep his day,
 Or he shall pay for this.
SALARINO Marry, well remembered.
 I reasoned with a Frenchman yesterday
30 Who told me, in the Narrow Seas that part
 The French and English, there miscarrièd
 A vessel of our country richly fraught.
 I thought upon Antonio when he told me,
 And wished in silence that it were not his.
35 You were best to tell Antonio what you hear—
 Yet do not suddenly, for it may grieve him.
 A kinder gentleman treads not the Earth.

The Merchant of Venice
ACT 2. SC. 9

 I saw Bassanio and Antonio part.
 Bassanio told him he would make some speed
40 Of his return. He answered “Do not so.
 Slubber not business for my sake, Bassanio,
 But stay the very riping of the time;
 And for the Jew’s bond which he hath of me,
 Let it not enter in your mind of love.
45 Be merry, and employ your chiefest thoughts
 To courtship and such fair ostents of love
 As shall conveniently become you there.”
 And even there, his eye being big with tears,
 Turning his face, he put his hand behind him,
50 And with affection wondrous sensible
 He wrung Bassanio’s hand—and so they parted.
 I think he only loves the world for him.
 I pray thee, let us go and find him out
 And quicken his embracèd heaviness
55 With some delight or other.
SALARINO  Do we so.
They exit.