Portia shows mercy to Antonia and goes to Belmont to rescues him and she and Nerissa disguise as young man and goes to the court to help Antonio. She saves Antonio and shylocks as well.When Shylock faces execution for his crimes, Portia convinces the Duke to pardon him. She then persuades Antonio to exercise mercy by not taking all of Shylock’s money from him. Here, Portia’s presence turns the proceedings away from violence and toward forgiveness.
The bond of friendship is another important theme in The Merchant of Venice. The bond between Antonio and Bassanio; it also appears in the friendship between Bassanio and Gratiano, whom Bassanio, against his better judgment, is willing to take with him to Belmont. Lorenzo also figures into the friendship of these men, who help in his elopement with Jessica. Because of Bassanio’s friendship with Lorenzo, Portia is willing to trust the care of her land to him when she leaves for Venice with Nerissa. Antonio is willing to risk his life for his friend, after all—the play shows that these bonds must give way to another, still stronger one: that between husband and wife. This is the point of the ring plot that Portia and Nerissa plan against their husbands. They are determined to show the men how important their vows are; the rings become symbolic of those vows. Perhaps they get the hint for this plot when in the court scene each husband declares how willing he is to sacrifice his wife’s promise if that would help save Antonio’s life At the end of the play, Portia cleverly gives the ring to Antonio to give back to Bassanio, by this means showing the superiority of married love over the friendship.
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