Explore the three portrayals of shylock

merchant of venice summary

However, as an act of "mercy", Antonio modifies the verdict, asking Shylock to hand over only one-half of his wealth — to him Antonio for his own as well as Lorenzo's need — provided that he keeps two promises.

One of the main topics of discussion about this play is whether Shylock is actually a villain or a victim. He inherited a nature embittered by centuries of insult and outrage. Shylock has been made the hard, savage, relentless creature we see him by long and cruel oppression.

Appleton and Company, The character of Shylock has been performed in many different ways.

shylocks defense summary

Even his daughter, Jessica, finds Shylock unbearable and she runs away from home, taking with her a chest of money and jewels. This is the cry that went up from Egypt, from the Roman amphitheatre, from the dungeons of the Spanish Inquisition. Initially he seems entirely concerned with money and material wealth, yet later when he learns that Jessica has sold a turquoise ring we see a sentimental side to this character.

Professor Lounsbury's chief care here is not to justify Shylock, but to come fairly off in his purpose of illustrating the 'art' with which Shakespeare makes us reconciled to the conclusion of the trial scene - the greater the difficulty, the greater the art.

One of the last shots of the film also highlights that, as a convert, Shylock would have been cast out of the Jewish community in Venice, no longer allowed to live in the ghetto.

shylocks punishment in the merchant of venice

Hales, The Athenmum, 15 December, It is, I am convinced, only modern readers and modern actors who suppose that Shakespeare consciously intended to arouse the sympathy of his audience in behalf of the Jew. Lippincott Company, Philadelphia, p.

Shylock character sketch pdf

In addition, Stewart developed a one-man show Shylock: Shakespeare's Alien and produced it while acting in the role in and They were usually depicted as avaricious usurers ; an example is Christopher Marlowe 's play The Jew of Malta , which features a comically wicked Jewish villain called Barabas. The Shylocks of sixteenth-century London included "goldsmiths, mercers, and, most visibly of all, scriveners", [2] according to prominent scholar Stephen Orgel, a Stanford professor who serves with A. In both cases, Shylock appals them. And I allow him to say it. I intend no ill to Cheshire by doing that. Hales, The Athenmum, 15 December, For interpreters of the play differ greatly in their attitude toward Shylock - and their attitude toward Shylock influences greatly, as a matter of course, their attitude toward the other characters of the play. In Venice, Jews had to live in a ghetto protected by Christians which was probably for their own safety.
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SparkNotes: The Merchant of Venice: Is Shylock a Villain?