Study Guide

The Merchant of Venice Act 2, Scene 3

By William Shakespeare

Act 2, Scene 3

Read the full text of The Merchant of Venice Act 2 Scene 3 with a side-by-side translation HERE.


  • At Shylock's house, Jessica, who is his rebellious daughter, laments Lancelot's impending departure. Living in Shylock's house is apparently miserable, and Lancelot was always a good distraction from the surrounding misery. Giving him a gold coin, she instructs Lancelot to take a letter to Lorenzo, who should be at Bassanio's house for dinner.
  • Lancelot, all tears, calls Jessica a "sweet Jew" and says goodbye.
  • Despite being a rebellious daughter, Jessica at least feels guilty about the fact that she is ashamed of being Shylock's daughter.  
  • Still, Jessica declares that, even though she shares her father's blood, she's nothing like him. Jessica hopes to put an end to all her troubles by becoming Lorenzo's wife and converting to Christianity.