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Shylock Essay

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Shylock Essay In the play "The Merchant of Venice" written by William Shakespeare there is a character called Shylock, and he has 2 personalities, a human and an ogre. He shows both of these in the play, but what one is he the most? Right from the start of when Shylock is introduced he could be seen as an "ogre" because he is prepared to do business that will profit himself with Antonio and Bassanio but when asked to talk and eat with them he takes it as an insult to him through his religion. "Yes to smell pork, to eat of the habitation which your prophet the nazarite conjured the devil into." Shylock may have his reasons to not want to socialise with Antonio and Bassanio, the two Christians, but they are worthless, as he has still chosen to do business with them and so there're taking advantages of both his religion and the ability to make money. ...read more.


Shylock speech about him being a victim earlier on further makes Antonio more sympathetic to his situation and accepted the deal. Shylock is a greedy money lender. Shylock charges high interest rates and when he is not repaid he insists on revenge. In the play Shylock loans Antonio money, and he suggests that if the loan wasn't repaid in time Shylock may cut off one pound of flesh from Antonio's body. Soon after Shylock's daughter runs away from home with Lorenzo, a Christian, and takes her father's ducats with her. When Antonio's ships do not come in and he is not able to repay the loan, Shylock is no longer interested in getting his money back. Shylock wants revenge for the loss of his daughter through the performance of the bond. In court Shylock is defeated because of his selfishness. ...read more.


Shylock had to endure all those bad things which start to make us feel sorry for him. Shakespeare also shows the human qualities of Shylock throughout the play. Shakespeare brings out these human qualities by causing us to feel sympathy for him. After the loss of his daughter Shylock ran through the streets crying "My daughter! O my ducats! O my daughter! "As children followed him, mocking him. This causes us to feel sympathy for Shylock, even through we may feel to be an ogre. Besides the loss of his daughter and his ducats (money), after the trial, Shylock also loses his property and his religion. The loss of his property was certainly a blow to Shylock but it can hardly compare to his loss of his religion. His forced conversion to Christianity brings out more sympathy for him. In my conclusion I do think that Shylock is an Ogre and deserved the consequences that he got. ...read more.

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  1. Shylock, the ogre or the human?

    Shylock within three months, Shylock is entitled to a pound of Antonio's flesh which was a personal request of Shylock by the way. This makes the link with ogres who legendarily feed on human flesh making him seem like a monstrous and terrifying person; something which I believe he is not.

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