The Merchant of Venice is a play full of different relationships
ranging from love and friendships to hate. These relationships are
affected by gossips and rumours, which due to the close community are
flying around all the time. Money is involved in everything in the
play; it is at the centre of work, relationships and rumours. It also
holds together and makes the main tension of the play.
There are many relationships in The Merchant of Venice. The most
common one is friendship. The friendships cross sex, age, race, and
class boundaries. And range from very strong ones such as between
Antonio and Bassanio to mere acquantancies such as the one between
Solanio and Antonio.
There are many friendships, which link all of the characters together.
The one between Bassanio and Antonio is the most obvious, and you feel
that they are so close, they could be brothers. This is how Antonio
was described when Bassanio left to find Portia.
"And even there, his eye being big with tears, turning his face he put
his hand behind him"
But even in such a close relationship, money is still involved, as
Antonio lends money to Bassanio, which has to be paid back. Another
friendship is the one between Solanio and Solerio, they are very
useful characters, because they are gossips and so can keep us
informed on what is happening. Generally there is a quite tight knit
community within the Christians, and they have a rivalry with the
Jewish community who are also quite close to each other. Two specific
friends within the Jewish community are: Tubal and Shylock - Tubal
comforts and tells the truth to S...
... middle of paper ...
... I feel that everything has a price tag, and largely human
relationships can be bought and sold for financial gain. Friends,
enemies, lovers, all evolve through financial activities. Venice back
in Shakespeare's day was a busy, bustling, buoyant commercial centre.
Change was inevitable with people coming and going, money swapping
hands, and huge risks involved in day to day life. Merchants chanced
their fortunes being tied up in the ships and the goods they carried.
A constant uncertainty being the fear that they might lose everything
if the ships ran into stormy seas or rocks. Despite much talk and
action revolving around finance I still feel that passion manages to
emerge in the form of love, hatred, friendship and selflessness. These
act to enrich the lives of the characters and to add depth to the
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