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Summary Act 5

SCENE 1- Act 5 opens on an avenue in Belmont near Portia's house with Lorenzo and Jessica.

Lorenzo and Jessica are waiting for Portia to return. Lorenzo comments about the beautiful evening, and how it how it is so perfect a night for historical lovers and for themselves. Stephano enters the scene. He states he is a friend and carries a message that Portia will be back by dawn. Launcelot walks onto the scene with the news that Bassanio will also arrive before dawn. Lorenzo asks Stephano to go into the house and request the musicians to come out to play. Lorenzo makes a speech about the beauty and power of music. Portia and Nerissa come to the house as the music plays. Lorenzo greats Portia and welcomes her home. Portia asks if Bassanio and Gratiano have returned yet. She requests that no one tell them that Portia and Nerissa left the house during their absence. A trumpet sounds informing them that Bassanio is near. Bassanio, Gratiano, and Antonio enter the scene. Bassanio introduces Portia to Antonio. Nerissa notes the absence of Gratiano's ring. Bassanio also admits to giving away his ring to the judge. The women state their intentions to sleep with the men that have their rings. After much teasing the women admit their deceits and tell the story of dressing up as the judge and his clerk. Portia gives Antonio the news that his ships are safe. Nerissa gives Lorenzo and Jessica the dead promising Shylocks wealth to them after his death. It is almost morning time and the group goes inside. The play ends with Gratiano joking about going to bed the doctor's clerk.

William Shakespeare