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Bassanio, a young Venetian of noble rank, wishes to woo the beautiful and wealthy heiress Portia of Belmont. Having squandered his estate, he needs 3,000 ducats to subsidise his expenditures as a suitor. Bassanio approaches his friend Antonio, a wealthy merchant of Venice who has previously and repeatedly bailed him out. This edition of The Merchant of Venice is an adaptation of Shakespeare's eponymous drama, narrated in plain modern English, capturing the very essence and key elements of the original Shakespeare's work.