The Merchant of Venice Act 2 Scene 6 ICSE Questions and Answers

Question 1 : Read the extract given below and answer the question that follow.

Jessica :  Here, catch this casket; it is wroth the pains.
I am glad ’tis night, you do not look on me,
For I am much ashamed of my exchange:
But love is blind and lovers cannot see
The pretty follies that themselves commit;

(i) Where is Jessica? What is she doing?

Answer : Jessica is in her house at the present moment. She is eloping with Lorenzo as her father is against her relationship with a Christians. She knew that her father would not approve of them and thus she saw no option but to elope with her lover.

(ii) To whom is Jessica talking? Why doesn’t she want the listener to look at her?

Answer : Jessica is talking to her lover Lorenzo. She doesn’t want Lorenzo to look at her for she is dressed as a boy. Probably she thinks that her lover might not admire her in this attire.

(iii) Explain Jessica’s comment, “I am much ashamed of my exchange”.

Answer : Jessica wanted to marry Lorenzo but her father was against her wishes. She saw no option but to elope with Lorenzo. She had to dress as a boy in order to succeed in her plan. However, the disguise ashamed her.

(iv) What follies is Jessica talking about? Who is her partner in these follies?

Answer : Jessica is talking about the follies that she is about to commit with her lover Lorenzo. She is eloping with him. She is going  against her father’s wishes and has also stolen a considerable amount of money and jewels from home.

(v) Do you think Jessica was a dutiful daughter? Give reason.

Answer : Jessica was not dutiful daughter, as she disobeyed her father in eloping with a Christian, as she knew very well how much he hated Christians. She also betrayed his trust, as she robber her father’s money and jewels while eloping, especially after he had specifically instructed her to keep the house locked from inside and guard it.