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Thursday, 19 February 2015

ICSE 2015: English 2: Preparatory Test Two

ICSE 2015: English 2: Preparatory Test Two
Drama: The Merchant of Venice
Time: One hour                                                                                Maximum Marks: 30
All questions carry equal marks
Question 1
Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
Portia:
.....Now he goes,
With no less presence, but with much more
Than young Alcides, when he did redeem
The virgin tribute paid by howling Troy
To the sea-monster. I stand for sacrifice,
The rest aloof are the Dardanian wives,
With blearèd visages, come forth to view
The issue of th’exploit. Go, Hercules!
Live thou, I live. With much, much more dismay
I view the fight than thou that mak’st the fray.
(a)   Who are young Alcides and Hercules here? What is the fight and the fray here?
(b)  Explain with reference to Troy and Alcides, how Portia associates the situation present.
(c)   Explain:
               i.         virgin tribute
             ii.         the Dardanian wives
(d)  Explain:
               i.         The issue of th’exploit the Dardanian wives
             ii.         Live thou, I live
(e)   Why does Portia look at the fight with much more fearful expectation? Describe the reaction of both Portia and Bassanio at the result of the fight.
Question 2
Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
Portia:
The quality of mercy is not strained,
It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest:
It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.
’Tis mightiest in the mightiest, it becomes
The thronèd monarch better than his crown.
(a)   Where is Portia? Why?
(b)  Explain:
The quality of mercy is not strained,
It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
(c)   Why does Portia say that mercy is ‘twice blessed’?
(d)  Give the meaning of the phrase and explain:  ’Tis mightiest in the mightiest
(e)   Is Shylock’s mercy towards Antonio the only release for Antonio? Comment in the context of the events that happen in the scene.

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