Why did Bassanio say, “If I could add a lie unto a fault, I would deny it”?

QuestionsWhy did Bassanio say, “If I could add a lie unto a fault, I would deny it”?
Chirayu Shekkar asked 10 months ago

When and why does Bassanio say, “If I could add a lie unto a fault, I would deny it” in Shakespeare’s play The Merchant of Venice?

2 Answers
Jayanta Kumar Maity Staff answered 10 months ago

Bassanio says the above extract when Portia asks him whether he has given away the ring given by her to anyone. Here Bassanio means to say that there is no gain by stating a lie. That won’t mend a fault. A lie may lead to another lie and finally an unhappy life. That is why he chooses to say the truth and confesses his guilt: “but you see my finger / Hath not the ring upon it. It is gone.”

Jayanta Kumar Maity Staff answered 10 months ago

Bassanio says the above extract when Portia asks him whether he has given away the ring given by her to anyone. Here Bassanio means to say that there is no gain by stating a lie. That won’t mend a fault. A lie may lead to another lie and finally an unhappy life. That is why he chooses to say the truth and confesses his guilt: “but you see my finger / Hath not the ring upon it. It is gone.”

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