Antonio is considered a generous character because he loans money without charging interest. An example of this is when Bassanio needs money to impress Portia, Antonio agrees to secure any loan that Bassanio can get in the marketplace. When Bassanio gets a loan from Shylock, a man that Antonio is not on the best terms with, Shylock says that if the loan money can't be paid back, he will take "a pound of flesh" from Antonio. Because Antonio agrees to these terms, he is viewed as a kind and generous character.
His kindness is further illustrated when he cannot repay the loan, his friends come to his side and ask mercy for him during his trial. In addition, Antonio faces the prospect of this deal in a calm manner, which may signify his Christ-like character because of his unselfishness.