From Act 2, Scene 5, in The Merchant of Venice, please answer the following questions:
Why should the doors be locked according to the speaker?
What reason does the speaker give for his going out?
Give the meaning of: Clamber not you up to the casements. 2. Sound of shallow foppery
Who was Jacob? Why does the speaker swear by Jacob's staff?
Give the meaning of: Sound of shallow foppery
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As always, it is vitally important to be aware of who the speaker is in this particular section of Act II scene 5, and in addition, to be aware of who he or she is speaking to, and also how it fits into the plot of the play as a whole. The person who bids "the doors be locked" is Shylock, and he is issuing an order to his daughter, Jessica, based on the information that has just been supplied to him by Launcelot. Launcelot has just informed him that there is due to be a masque that night, a festival of revelry and drunken behaviour, involving loud noise, music and costumes on the streets of Venice. It is in response to this that Shylock commands Jessica to do the following:
What, are there masques? Hear you me, Jessica.Lock up my doors, and when you hear the drumAnd the vile squealing of the wry-necked fife,Clamber not you up to the casements then,Nor thrust your head into the public street...
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