There are two emotions commonly shown to motivate characters in the Merchant Of Venice, both positively and negatively, namely that of love and hate. These two emotions motivate characters such as Shylock, who’s actions are motivated by his hate for Antonio, Jessica’s love for Lorenzo and hate for her father and Antonio’s love for Bassanio and hate for Shylock.
Antonio’s actions are motivated from both love and hate. These actions are arguably positive or negative. Antonio shares a very special friendship with Bassanio. He shows a special kind of love towards Bassanio, which leads him to give up all his wealth to his best friend. Antonio willing tells Bassanio “Thou know'st that all my fortunes are at sea; Neither have I money nor commodity To raise a present sum: therefore go forth; Try what my credit can in Venice do: That shall be rack'd, even to the uttermost, To furnish thee to Belmont, to fair Portia. Go, presently inquire, and so will I, Where money is, and I no question make to have it of my trust or for my sake.” (1. 1. 184-192). Antonio is explaining that even though all his fortunes are at sea, he will try to acquire a loan in order to pay for Bassanio’s trip to Belmont, in attempt to marry Portia. Antonio’s action can be positive or negative. It can be positive in a way that he truly cares about Bassanio and he respects that he is in love with Portia or negative because little does Antonio know, he will be potentially giving up his life for Bassanio. Later in the play another side of Antonio is revealed. Antonio is displayed as a hard cruel man, although a Christian, he displays hatred and contempt towards the Jewish race, usurers and especially towards Shylock. After kicking and spitting upon Shylock, Antonio shows no remorse or sympathy for the man he has abused. Antonio even goes to the point of saying "I am as like to call thee so again, to spit on thee again, to spurn thee too. If