The Merchant of Venice Essay (Shylock as a Villain)

Topics: The Merchant of Venice, Shylock, Portia Pages: 3 (977 words) Published: May 23, 2013
The Villain of The Merchant of Venice
We all have a mind of our own and with that we can make the choice to do good or evil. So it is not our enemies that lure us to evil ways. It is our own minds that decide to do so. In the play, The Merchant of Venice, by William Shakespeare, Shylock is a villain because in the play Shylock uses deception and his knowledge of Antonio to exact his revenge, Shylock also shows that anger, revenge and hate has clouded his mind and so he chooses to show no forgiveness or mercy towards Antonio. Finally Shylock manipulates others to get his way and to not raise further suspicions. In the play Shylock and Antonio make a bond. Shylock is expecting Antonio would come to him for a favor sooner or later because Shylock knows Antonio lends money without interest. Proved when Shylock says to himself, “He lends out money gratis and brings down the rate of usance here with us in Venice.”(I , iii 39-40) Shylock also feels that Antonio is quite desperate since he is coming to him for help. The deal was if Antonio doesn’t pay the ducats back in this amount on this day, Shylock gets to cut off a pound of Antonio’s flesh. Shylock knows that Antonio relies on his ships for income. He also knows the risks and factors the ships encounter. Shylock uses Antonio’s desperation against him and he uses deception to throw in a fatal condition that Antonio agrees to. This is true when Shylock says: This kindness will I show. Go with me to a notary, seal me there. Your single bond, and, in a merry sport, If you repay me not on such a day, In such a place, such sum or sums as are Express’d in the condition, let the forfeit Be nominated for an equal pound Of your fair flesh, to be cut off and taken In what part of your body pleaseth me. (I , iii 139-147) This truly proves that Shylock uses his knowledge of Antonio and deception to exact his revenge. The only way a villain can stay true to his plan of revenge, his mind must first be clouded with...
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