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Why did Shakespeare write "Merchant of Venice"?Why did Shakespeare write "Merchant...

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jd2 | Student, College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted September 30, 2008 at 12:46 PM via web

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Why did Shakespeare write "Merchant of Venice"?

Why did Shakespeare write "Merchant of Venice"?

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ms-mcgregor | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted September 30, 2008 at 1:37 PM (Answer #2)

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Shakespeare wrote this play as an examination of greed vs. mercy and compassion. It also allowed him to combine two old folk tales into one comedy. The first tale concerned a greed creditor who was intent on getting everything owed to him. The second tale revolved around a young man who wanted to marry his love but had to properly choose between three chests before he could gain the hand of his lover. The creditor was turned into Shylock, a greedy Jew, who was a rather stock character of literature at the time Shakespeare was writing. The person who owes money is Antonio, the man who wants to marry is Bassanio and his lover is Portia. Although this play has been considered anti-Semintic because of the portrayal of Shylock, Shakespeare was probably trying harder to examine how greed can have no place with mercy or compassion. We must remember that Shakespeare was rather young when he wrote this play so their are unresolved issues left over at the end. However, good does conquer evil and that would have been a message a young Shakespeare wanted to convey to his audience.

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glecakes | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 27, 2008 at 6:09 PM (Answer #3)

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He wrote it to show us that even by putting aside the greed of old shylock and the ignorance of forth coming succuess, this play is written to show us the uncontrable love and effection he has for his image of the perfect women, PORTIA

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lyngoh | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted June 26, 2009 at 2:31 AM (Answer #4)

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Shakespeare wrote this play as an examination of greed vs. mercy and compassion. It also allowed him to combine two old folk tales into one comedy. The first tale concerned a greed creditor who was intent on getting everything owed to him. The second tale revolved around a young man who wanted to marry his love but had to properly choose between three chests before he could gain the hand of his lover. The creditor was turned into Shylock, a greedy Jew, who was a rather stock character of literature at the time Shakespeare was writing. The person who owes money is Antonio, the man who wants to marry is Bassanio and his lover is Portia. Although this play has been considered anti-Semintic because of the portrayal of Shylock, Shakespeare was probably trying harder to examine how greed can have no place with mercy or compassion. We must remember that Shakespeare was rather young when he wrote this play so their are unresolved issues left over at the end. However, good does conquer evil and that would have been a message a young Shakespeare wanted to convey to his audience.

i have never seen such a good online answer in my whole entire life!

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