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Merchant of Venice

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Merchant of Venice

Many people are villainous in the way they act, and
their villainous acts may be rooted in the desire to destroy

others, or in the hopes of elevating themselves. Many people

may only act "villainous" in reaction to the way they have

been treated in the past. Shylock the Jew is the villain or

antagonist in the play "The Merchant of Venice". Shylock

mistreats Antonio the Christian, his daughter, Jessica and


The first person Shylock mistreats, is Launcelot. He

mistreats this servant by complaining behind Launcelot's

back of his laziness. Shylock says,

"The patch is kind enough, but a huge feeder,

Snail-slow in profit, and he sleeps by day

More than the wildcat. Drones hive not with me..

..His borrowed purse."

Shylock also acts villainous towards Launcelot by acting

belligerent towards him.

"Who bids thee call? I do not bid thee call."

Shylock mistreats this man because of his poverty, and

because Launcelot is socially beneath him. You also start to

wonder about how fair Shylock is, when Launcelot is deciding

whether or not to leave him.

Shylock also mistreats his own daughter, Jessica. He

mistreats her by keeping her as a captive in her own house,

not letting her out, and not letting her hear the Christian

music around her. He orders her to:

"Lock up my doors; and when you hear the drum...

..But stop my house's ears-I mean casements.

Let not the sound of shallow fopp'ry enter

My sober house."

Jessica considers her home to be hell, and she calls

Launcelot, a "merry little devil". She even states that her

father is Satan. Shylock also mistreats his own daughter, by

not loving her enough, even to the point where he complains

about all of the money he's spending in a search to find


"Why, there, there, there, there! A diamond gone

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