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The Merchant of Venice is the story of Antonio, thDramas title character, and his friend Bassanio. Bassanio is in need of money so that he may woo Portia, a wealthy heiress. Bassanio asks Antonio for a loan and Antonio agrees to this loan, however all his money is tied up in shipping ventures. Together the two go to Shylock, a Jewish moneylender, to request a loan for Bassanio to be guaranteed against Antonios shipping ventures. Shylock agrees to the loan at no interest in the condition that if the debt is not repaid Shylock may collect a pound of Antonios flesh. At the same time Portia, who is being wooed by various suitors, is upset over a curious stipulation in her fathers will regarding the man that she may marry.