"The Merchant of Venice" by William Shakespeare is a play about love, friendship and money. I intend to mainly focus on the latter, and examine whether or not "money is the root of all evil.".
"The Merchant of Venice" has a lot to do with friendship and love, for example the love between Antonio, a merchant and Bassanio, a Lord who is in great debt. At the beginning of the play we learn of Bassanio's plan to pay of all his debts by marrying a rich Heiress named Portia, Bassanio asks Antonio for the money so he could appear very wealthy to Portia, but Antonio could not lend him the money, instead Antonio tells Bassanio to travel to Venice in his name, to see how that could credit him, Bassanio ends up asking Shylock, a Jewish money lender, for the money. With Antonio present Shylock begins to wonder why he should lend Bassanio money, for in the past Antonio had often patronised him for charging interest, he called him cut-throat dog and spat upon his Jewish Gabardine, and for all this Shylock should be lending him 3,000 Ducats! Shylock mostly hated Antonio for insulting him at every opportunity, he also hated him for charging no interest on his loans, thus making Shylock a poorer man. Shylock after a while agrees to lend Bassanio the money, and with no interest, but if Antonio and Bassanio cannot pay back the loan in 3 months, Shylock will remove a pound of Antonio's flesh. As it states in the following quote:.
"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 pleases me." .
Antonio agrees to this thinking, his ships will have returned by this time with his investment. .
More into the theme of love, there is the love between Jessica, Shylock's daughter and Lorenzo, a Christian, and friend of Antonio and Bassanio. Shylock doesn't like the idea of his daughter wishing to marry a Christian. Jessica's relationship with her Father is not a good one, so Jessica sells her mothers ring for a Monkey.