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Show How The Themes of Love Marriage and Friendship Overlap in The Merchant of Venice.

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The Merchant of Venice Show How The Themes of Love Marriage and Friendship Overlap in The Merchant of Venice. In this essay I will show how the themes of love, marriage, friendship and money and how they overlap in the Merchant of Venice. In this play, the main theme is money and this theme is portrayed throughout the Merchant of Venice, being presented in many different ways. Prejudice is also a large theme used, which is tied in with the theme of money. Shylock and Antonio and their bond of a pound of flesh. Shakespeare wanted to show that money cant buy you love. Money contributes largely in the merchant of Venice and it is the main theme shown. Firstly we see Bassanio who needs to borrow a sum of money from Antonio his friend, and although Antonio is wealthy, he is not happy as he says to Bassanio that he does not know why he is 'So sad'. Suggesting that his wealth does not make him entirely contented. However, Shylock seems to show that maybe money is every thing, Shylock is only interested in money and the creation of money. As we see later in the play, that Shylock's loss of ducats is more significant than the disappearance of his daughter, 'My daughter!' 'O my ducats!' Shylock refers to his ducats more than his daughter he also says 'I would my daughter were dead at my foot' This shows the cruel side of Shylock. ...read more.


Salerio and Salanio are to good friends of Antonio's and show that they are worried for Antonio's welfare. 'I would have stayed until I had made you merry' Salerio is prepared to stay to help his friend. Portia and Nerissa show qualities of friend ship, as they are close friends. Nerissa and Portia will have a joined marriage this shows that they are willing to share their personal lives with each other. Nerissa is a reliable friend and supports for Portia when the suitors come to try and defeat the three caskets and receive Portias hand. 'By my troth, Nerissa,' she confided to her maid 'My little body is aweary of this great world'. Here Portia is showing Nerissa that she trusts her and is able to confide in her. Portia shows friendship to when she is prepared to help out with re-paying the money owed to try to save Antonio 's life. So in conclusion friendship in the Merchant of Venice is shown and proved throughout with the trust and loyalty that Antonio and Bassanio share. This shows how two friends are willing to help each other and stand by each other whenever they can. Antonio shows the greatest respect and self-sacrifice towards his friend, Bassanio, when he shows that he is prepared to sacrifice his own life in order to make Bassanio's dreams happen. 'My extremest means lie all unlocked to your occasions'. Showing how everything Antonio has is available to meet the needs of his great friend Bassanio. ...read more.


Women are below men and are told and expected to do what they are told, in most cases they did not have a say in whom they would marry. An example of this is shown by Portia having to marry the man who picks the correct casket, even if she does not like him. 'I may neither choose whom I would, nor refuse whom I dislike'. Obedience is expected from the men being a wife or daughter. Although Jessica defies her father Shylock and runs away with a Christian and Shylocks money. So it is funny to see when Portia and Nerissa disguise as men to trick their husbands here they are undermining their husbands and making a joke out of them. 'We'll see our husbands before they think of us'. So In conclusion to how the themes overlap in the Merchant of Venice, I have shown that every theme is tied in with one another. Seen that Shakespeare's point of the play in my opinion that money cant buy you love is very true and is shown through out the play: Bassanio and Portia who finds true love, which, is not based on wealth. Now having completed this essay I think that there are two main theme's money and friendship. These themes are constantly shown through out the play. I think that the play is successful as it has different aspects to it love, revenge, betrayal and of course the bond of a pound of flesh. The play has every thing you need to make a good story line and I think that's why it is a success. ...read more.

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