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AQA GCSE Eng Lit Paper 1: The Merchant of Venice Sample Paper & Response

| Friday March 09, 2018


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  1. AQA GCSE Eng Lit Paper 1: The Merchant of Venice Lessons 1-7
  2. AQA GCSE Eng Lit Paper 1: The Merchant of Venice Lessons 8-14
  3. AQA GCSE Eng Lit Paper 1: The Merchant of Venice Sample Paper & Response
  4. AQA GCSE English Literature Paper 1: Shakespeare and the 19th Century Novel Assessment Pack

The sample paper can be used as a mock or as a summative assessment exercise.

Sample Paper and Exemplar Answer (AQA, 2014)

Pre-release: Act 1
Read the following extract from Act 1 Scene 3 of The Merchant of Venice and then answer the question that follows.

At this point in the play Shylock is speaking to Antonio. Antonio has asked Shylock to lend him some money.

Signior Antonio, many a time and oft
In the Rialto you have rated me
About my monies and my usances.
Still have I borne it with a patient shrug
For suff’rance is the badge of all our tribe.
You call me misbeliever, cut-throat dog,
And spit upon my Jewish gaberdine,
And all for use of that which is mine own.
Well then, it now appears you need my help.
Go to, then, you come to me, and you say,
‘Shylock, we would have monies’ – you say so,
You that did void your rheum upon my beard,
And foot me as you spurn a stranger cur
Over your threshold: monies is your suit.
What should I say to you? Should I not say
‘Hath a dog money? Is it possible
A cur can lend three thousand ducats?’ Or
Shall I bend low, and in a bondman’s key,
With bated breath and whisp’ring humbleness,
Say this: ‘Fair sir, you spit on me on Wednesday last,
You spurned me such a day, another time
You called me dog: and for these courtesies
I’ll lend you thus much monies.’

Starting with this speech, how does Shakespeare present Shylock’s feelings about the way he is treated?

Write about:

  • how Shakespeare presents Shylock in this speech
  • how Shakespeare presents Shylock in the play as a whole.

[30 marks]


Lower Band Response

In Shylock’s speech he...

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