Who is Portia in Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice?

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Portia is one of the main characters in the play, and we are introduced to her in name quite early in the play. Bassanio tells Antonio and audiences that he has his love sights set on Portia because she is super attractive and super rich.

In Belmont is a lady richly left,
And she is fair and—fairer than that word—
Of wondrous virtues. Sometimes from her eyes
I did receive fair speechless messages.
Her name is Portia, nothing undervalued
To Cato’s daughter, Brutus' Portia.
Apparently, she is so rich and so good looking that many men from around the world know about her and are trying to obtain her as their trophy wife.
Nor is the wide world ignorant of her worth,
For the four winds blow in from every coast
Renownèd suitors, and her sunny locks
Hang on her temples like a golden fleece,
Fortunately, Shakespeare creates a much more vibrant and deep character with Portia than a static, beautiful and empty headed character. Audiences will discover that Portia is incredibly intelligent and unafraid to go after what she wants. This is why she rigs the casket lottery to make sure that Bassanio picks the right casket. She's also intelligent enough to manipulate and twist the law in her favor in order to rescue Antonio out of Shylock's clutches.
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Portia is the intelligent, beautiful heroine of the play The Merchant of Venice. She is a wealthy heiress who lives in Belmont and is forced to obey her father's will by marrying the suitor who wins the lottery. At the beginning of the play, Portia complains to Nerissa about her situation and the awful suitors who have attempted to marry her. However, Portia is respectful to the suitors from Morrocco and Arragon; still, though, she is pleased that they did not choose the correct casket. Portia instantly falls in love with Bassanio and selflessly gives him her fortune after he chooses the correct casket. She also allows Bassanio to return to Venice to visit Antonio and saves Bassanio's close friend by dressing up as a man and intervening in Antonio's trial. Portia is magnanimous, sympathetic, and witty throughout the play. She not only marries the man that she loves but also intelligently conducts a plan to save his friend Antonio.

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