Shakespeare – Module 5: The Merchant of Venice – 19 of 20 – Shylock pt 1


First impressions…

LO: in this session we will explore our first impressions of Shylock. We will look back at Act 1 and Act 2 to help us define an understanding of his character.

In the next session we will look more closely at Shylock’s famous speech in Act 3

Task 1: Work through the tasks on the powerpoint. Youwill need to watch some of the film and the link is in the ppt as well as at the end of the first task.

First 2 scenes from The Merchant of Venice (2004) film version

Task 2: Complete the vocabulary check below

Vocabulary check: what does the word disgraced mean?

having fallen from favour or a position of power or honour; discredited.

what does the word hindered mean?

make it difficult for (someone) to do something or for (something) to happen.

what does the word mocked mean?

tease or laugh at in a scornful or contemptuous manner.

what does the word scorned mean?

feel or express contempt or disdain for


reject (something) in a contemptuous way.

what does the word thwarted mean?

prevent (someone) from accomplishing something.

We will now look in detail at a part of Act 2 Scene 5 in which we learn about Shylock’s attitude towards his daughter, Jessica

Task 3: complete the tasks on the document below.

Task 4: Complete the quick quiz based on the above extract

When Shylock refers to Jessica as ‘my girl’ what does the use of my suggest about Shylock?

‘My’ is possessive. It suggests he sees his daughter as something he owns

What does Shylock mean when he says he did dream of money bags?

Shylock dreams of his money bag. … He fears something bad is about to happen, for the dream feels to him like a bad omen. He rationalizes staying home by saying that the Christians don’t really want to see him and only invited him to flatter him.

What is an ‘imperative’ verb?

It is a verb that is used at the very start of a sentence. You may think of them as commands, or instructions such as ‘Do this…’ or ‘Hear you me, Jessica..’

How is Shylock’s house made to sound miserable?

Words like, ‘vile’ and ‘squealing’ make it sound unpleasant and the fact that he wants to lock out the life that passes by his house.

What is an aside?

a remark or passage in a play that is intended to be heard by the audience but unheard by the other characters in the play.

What is the ‘patch’ Shylock is talking about.

What Shylock is saying is that Launcelot, who is now in the service of Shylock’s enemies, is an amiable individual, but is lazy and eats too much, and will be relieved of his duties as an employ of the money-lender.  “Patch” refers to Launcelot.  Shylock is convinced that Launcelot’s tendency to waste money will forthwith come at Bassanio’s expense instead of his own.

What is dramatic irony?

a literary technique by which the full significance of a character’s words or actions is clear to the audience or reader although unknown to the character.

You may it helpful to look at the site embedded in the link below to understand in more depth the extracts explored in this session.

Task 5: Look at the images on the document and answer the questions

Well done! You have now completed a character analysis of Shylock

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Task 6: Write a response to the question, What do we learn about Shylock in the first two acts?

Remember to include detail from the text and refert o the literary techniques we have referred to in this session. In the next session we will look at Act 3 and the analysis of this will be added to the work you have done today to forma complete response about Shylock

Well done. This concludes part 1 of our study of Shylock’s character.