The Merchant of Venice Reduced 1.2, 2.1, 2.7

Act 1 Scene 2:

Portia: I’m tired of this world.

Nerissa: You would be tired if you were poor, but I guess rich people suffer as much as the poor. If you want to be happy you should be in-between.

Portia: True.

Nerissa: So why don’t you?

Portia: It’s not that easy. But thinking this way won’t help me choose a husband… I guess I don’t really get to choose. ““O me, the word “choose!” I may neither choose whom I would nor refuse whom I dislike.” Doesn’t it suck I don’t get to choose?

Nerissa: Your dad was really wise. His idea was to have three boxes: gold, silver, and lead. And your suitor who can figure out the riddle can marry you. Do you like any of the suitors so far?

Portia: Name some, I’ll tell you what they’re like.

Nerissa: What about the one from Naples.

Portia: All he does it talk about his horse.

Nerissa: Count Palatine?

Portia: He doesn’t care if I love him or not.

Nerissa: How about the French one?

Portia: He’s so fake.

Nerissa: What about Faclonbridge?

Portia: Eh… he’s hot, but doesn’t speak English. 

Nerissa: What about the Scottish one?

Portia: He’s kind of a wimp

Nerissa: did you like the German one?

Portia: No way, he’s a drunk.

Nerissa: Don’t worry about these guys, they’re all gonna give up.

Portia: I’ll die alone.

Nerissa: Do you remember that Venetian solider guy?

Portia: Oh yeah, Bassanio?

Nerissa: Yeah him, he should have a beautiful wife, like you.

SERVANT enters

Servant: There are four guys who wanna say goodbye. And the prince of Morocco is here.

Portia: Okay. Let’s go Nerissa.

Both exit.

Act 2 Scene 1:

Morocco: “Mislike me not for my complexion”, just because I have dark skin doesn’t mean I’m any less of a man.

Portia: I don’t just care about looks.

Morocco: Thanks. Show me the caskets and I’ll try my best.

Portia: If you get it wrong you can never get married. Are you sure you want to?

Morocco: Yeah sure.

Portia: Okay you can try after dinner.

Act 2 Scene 7:

Portia: Show the different boxes to the prince.

Morocco: The gold one says “if you choose me you will get what you want”. The Silver one says “if you choose me you’ll get what you deserve”. The lead one says “if you choose me you will risk everything”.

Portia: if you pick the one with my picture you win.

Morocco: I need help! The lead one is too scary. What about the silver one… I do deserve Portia. Let me look at gold again. Portia is what I want; it must be the gold one. Give me the key.

Portia: Okay.

Morocco: Shit! It’s a skull with a letter.

“All that glisters is not gold—

Often have you heard that told.

Many a man his life hath sold

But my outside to behold.

Gilded tombs do worms enfold.

Had you been as wise as bold,

Young in limbs, in judgment old,

Your answer had not been inscrolled.

Fare you well. Your suit is cold—

Cold, indeed, and labor lost.”

Portia: Thank god he didn’t get it.


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