Shylock’s daughter, Jessica, escorted Lancelot to the door.

‘I’m sorry you’re leaving my father like this,’ she said. ‘Our house is hell, and you, a merry devil, relieved it of some of its tedium. But goodbye, and here’s a ducat for you.’ She looked at him hesitantly then drew a letter out of her pocket. ‘Lancelot, tonight at supper you’ll see Lorenzo, who will be a guest of your new master. Give him this letter, and do it secretly. And so, farewell. I don’t want my father to catch me talking to you.’

‘Adieu,’ said Lorenzo. ‘My tears speak for me. Most beautiful pagan! Most sweet Jewess! I’m much mistaken if a Christian didn’t seduce your mother to produce you. But goodbye. These foolish tears are unmanly. Goodbye!’

Jessica watched him go then shut the door. It was goodbye to Lancelot. What a terrible sin it was in her to be ashamed to be her father’s child. But although she was his natural daughter she wasn’t his daughter in other ways. Oh Lorenzo! If he kept his word all her problems would be over. She would become a Christian and be his loving wife.’

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Read more scenes from The Merchant of Venice:

The Merchant of Venice in modern English | The Merchant of Venice original text
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Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 1, Scene 1 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 1, Scene 1
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 1, Scene 2 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 1, Scene 2
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 1, Scene 3 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 1, Scene 3
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Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 2, Scene 1 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 2, Scene 1
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 2, Scene 2 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 2, Scene 2
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 2, Scene 3 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 2, Scene 3
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 2, Scene 4 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 2, Scene 4
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 2, Scene 5 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 2, Scene 5
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 2, Scene 6 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 2, Scene 6
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 2, Scene 7 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 2, Scene 7
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 2, Scene 8 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 2, Scene 8
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 2, Scene 9 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 2, Scene 9
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Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 3, Scene 1 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 3, Scene 1
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 3, Scene 2 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 3, Scene 2
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 3, Scene 3 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 3, Scene 3
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 3, Scene 4 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 3, Scene 4
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 3, Scene 5 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 3, Scene 5
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Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 4, Scene 1 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 4, Scene 1
Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 4, Scene 2 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 4, Scene 2
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Modern The Merchant of Venice Act 5, Scene 1 | The Merchant of Venice text Act 5, Scene 1

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