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There are a number of themes displayed in the Merchant of Venice one of them being the theme of love. In the book, love is revealed amidst family members, buddies and lovers.
Romantic love is an underlying theme in the play. Portia is wealthy but lonely, and the only way to her is the casket. Shakespeare makes use of the caskets to demonstrate the way various people view love and additionally to show what matters most to the suitors, and in some instances, material matters and outward appearances are the things that matter the most in place of actual love.
The prince of Morocco is shown as the first suitor. He is presented as an egoistic person whose interest lies in the outward appearance in place of true love, so he chooses the gold casket. The second suitor is the Prince of Aragon picked the silver casket because he pictured himself as worthy. The third suitor, Bassanio chooses the lead casket because the outward appearance did not influence him.
Portia falls in love with Bassanio because, unlike other suitors who value the outward appearance, he views the inside of a person as of greater importance than beauty and wealth. Even though Bassanio is of a lower social class as compared to Portia, they still fall in love. Portia also shows her passion to Bassanio by trying to delay him because she would not want him picking the wrong casket and this would mean that he would lose her hand in marriage.
Jessica, Shylocks daughter, and Lorenzo are also used to demonstrate the theme of love; she runs away with Lorenzo who is a Christian because his father would never allow her to get married to a Christian.
Shakespeare helps illustrate that true love is what that matters as compared to the outward appearance of a person or wealth and that one should consider the inside of a person.
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