It is common belief that everyone is in relationships for the sole reason of being in any sort of relationship is to benefit from it. Though this is not seen as being malevolent, it has the potential to cause others pain when they discover that someone has been in a relationship with them just to use them for personal gain. Even with fortitude, it is a hard experience to overcome. However, in William Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice, relationships are driven by companionship. This is demonstrated through the relationships of Antonio and Bassanio, Portia and Bassanio, as well as Gratiano and Antonio.
The first example of of relationships being driven by companionship is demonstrated through the characters of Antonio and Bassanio. For example, in the play Solanio states that “he only loves the world for [Bassanio]” (2.8.50). In this quote, Solanio refers to the fact that through Antonio’s obvious depression in the play, he still loves the world and his life because of his close friendship with Bassanio. This is significant because it symbolizes that society cannot efficiently function without the reliability on other people. Many people face adversity at some point in their lives and feel like they have no one to turn to. It is often their close friends who reach out and help them fight through their struggles instead of giving up on them and abandoning their friends in a time of need. Friends stick by their friends because they accept each other for who they are and are willing to help them out, without asking or expecting anything in return. It is demonstrated through the characters of Antonio and Bassanio in the play that companionship is the driving force of all relationships.
When people think of being wealthy, what often comes to their minds is having everything you desire. Having everything you desire can have positive and negative effects. In William Shakespeare’s, The Merchant Of Venice, money is the only motivator in the book. Bassanio marries portia for money, Jessica runs away with all of Shylocks money and Bassanio is using Antonio for his money.
The first demonstration that money is the only motivator can be seen when Bassanio would like to marry Portia for her money. For example in the script it Bassanio says "in Belmont there is a lady richly left and many Jasons come in quest of her." (1.1.6) In the quote it demonstrates that Bassanio is interested in courting Portia because her father has left her a great amount of money.This would be great for Bassanio since he is completely broke. It will give him the chance to receive all the money he has ever wanted. This is significant because it goes to show that plenty of people in the past married others for their titles and wealthiness. Wealth is the only aspect they need to feel happiness in their life. Unfortunately, people like this are still around in society. They are also known as "gold diggers". It is evident that Bassanio is a gold digger, money is his only motivator.
People have wondered for thousands of years what the basis of realtionships are. One's own interests are often closely linked with partnerships. In William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice, the audience is shown that relationships are driven by personal gain. For example, the alliances between Bassanio and Portia, Jessica and Shylock and Shylock and Antonio prove that their interactions are propelled by selfishness.
The first demonstration of a relationship being driven by personal reward can be seen when Bassanio persues Portia's hand in marriage. For example when Bassanio confides to his close friend Antonio "in Belmont is a lady richy left….Oh my Antonio had I but the means" (Act1. Scene1. Lines160-175), he is relating the fact that he is trying to establish a romantic tie with Portia to solve his money problems rather than out of love. This significant because, despite romantic ideals of marriage based on love or infatuation, the true drive behind martial commitment is personal gain. Love becomes a practical and logical issue rather than an emotional one. Bassanio clearly reveals that relationships are driven by personal benefit.
Trust is the hopeful confidence in the reliability towards someone with whom one has a meaningful relationship. Trust can strengthen one’s relationship even more as confidence is built between the members. This confidence however can be easily broken if outside forces intervene. In William Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, it is shown that trust is overruled by greed. Trust is lost due to greed when Jessica steals from her father, Shylock refuses to give up his opportunity for revenge against Antonio, and Launcelot leaves his master, Shylock, due to poor wages and treatment.
The first example of greed overruling trust is when Shylock feels betrayed after Jessica steals from him and runs away with Lorenzo. For example, in the play, Shylock states that “ ‘I would my daughter were/ dead at my foot, and the jewels in her ear! would she/ were hearsed at my foot, and the ducats in her coffin!/’ ” (Act 3, Scene 1, Lines 81-83). In this quote, it is shown through Shylock’s newfound hate for his daughter that his trust was betrayed when Jessica steals his jewels and money. This is significant because trust is the bond between the members of strong relationships. Without this trust, relationships would not be able to thrive because its members would not be able to rely on each other in times of need. This results in a society that is undependable and would not be able to achieve goals that are unobtainable without teamwork. Through Jessica taking part of her father’s fortune, the trust in their relationship has been overruled by greed.
For the most part, society believes that love alone influences one’s decisions. It is believed the love drives people to choose, whether their choices be harmful or beneficial to their being. However, in William Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice, money is shown to be the greatest motivator. This is demonstrated through Bassanio wanting to win Portia’s hand, Shylock’s persistence to keep his bond and when Jessica steals Shylock’s ducats.
For the most part, society believes that love alone influences one’s decisions. It is believed the love drives people to choose, whether their choices be harmful or beneficial to their being. However, in William Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice, money is shown to be the greatest motivator. Money alone is shown to determine the outcomes of one’s decisions as demonstrated through Bassanio wanting to win Portia’s hand, Shylock’s persistence to keep his bond and when Jessica steals Shylock’s ducats.
The first reason that demonstrates that money is the greatest motivator can be seen through Bassanio’s desire to win Portia’s hand in marriage. For example, in the play, Bassanio describes Portia as “a lady richly left” (1.1.161) followed by “she is fair” (1.1.162). In this quote, it states that Bassanio’s main motivation for marrying Portia is firstly for her wealth and then, secondly, her beauty. He seems more concerned about gaining Portia’s money to get out of his debt with Antonio. This is significant because it proves that money has a stronger influence in one’s decision making process than love. Individuals in society will always care more about the reward given to them in money for the deeds they do in the community around them. Humans will always want to gain something as well if they have given something to another.
The first example showing that money has more significance to Shylock than his own family is when he becomes enraged that Jessica had stolen from him to tun away and merry her lover Lorenso. For example, in the play, Shylock states "I would my daughter were dead at my foot and the jewels in her ear! Would she were hearsed at my foot and the ducats in her coffin! No news of them? Why, so. And I know not what’s spent in the search. Why thou, loss upon loss! " (Act 3, Scene 1, Lines 75-79). In this quote Shylock expresses the anger that he is feeling towards Jessica for running away with his riches, he says he'd wish to see her dead at his feet wearing the jewels that she had stolen from him and that he's doing nothing but wasting his money looking for her. He seems to be more concerned about the riches that were stolen than the wear abouts of his own daughter. This quote is significant because it proves how Money is more important to some people than the bond of family.
Money will motivate people to anything, and is sometimes the basis of relationships. People often lend out money or favours for something in return. However, in William Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice, Antonio's motivation is in his friend Bassanio and their companionship. Antonio demonstrates this companionship by funding Bassanio's trip to Belmont, forgiving Bassanio for being selfish, and for never asking for anything in return.
The first reason that Antonio's motivation is companionship is because he funded his friend Bassanio's trip to Belmont. For example, in the play, Solanio states "he only loves the world for him (Bassanio)" (Act 2, Scene 8, Line 50). In this quote Solanio describes Antonio's motivation to do anything, which is his friendship with Bassanio. This is significant because it shows that there is more to happiness than materialistic products, and money.
An obvious hierarchy was established during the Shakespearean period between the rich and the less fortunate. In the world, money decides how far you can go, because you can not do anything without financial support. In William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice, money decides how people will treat you. For example, Portia is one of the richest and most fair citizens of Belmont and every man wants to marry her. Second, everyone asks Shylock because he is a Jew, but he also has the financial availability to give everyone money. Finally, two men went for the gold and silver chests when trying to marry Portia because those are valuable colors.
The first manifestation shown that money is what drives society is observed through Bassanio when he declares he wants to marry Portia. For example, within the play Bassanio states "in Belmont there is a lady richly left and many Jasons come in quest of her." (1.1.6) In this quote it proves that Bassanio is wanting to marry Portia for her large amount of money her father has left behind for her. Marrying Portia would provide Bassanio with tremendous amount of money, and this would be ideal for him as he is broke. This is significant because it shows that how much money is to your name or the job title you posses is more important than any other aspects of a human. Even in society today people are still looking for the man or women with the most money to cling onto to help them out, and Bassanio is showing the same.
Friendships are important for people. People need to have friends in life to rely on comfort and help. Not having a friend that goes out of their way for others makes people feel lonely and unloved. In Billie Wigglestick’s (William Shakespeare) The Merchant of Venice, it is shown that Bassanio is a horrible friend to Antonio. Bassanio proves to be a horrible friend to Antonio when Bassanio borrows money from Antonio and not paying him back, he lets Antonio put his life on the line for him to have more money, and he does not understand Antonio’s emotions towards him.
The first demonstration that Bassanio is a terrible friend to Antonio is when Bassanio takes money from Antonio and does not pay him back. For example, in the play, Antonio states to Bassanio “try what my credit can in Venice do: That shall be rack’d, even to the uttermost, To furnish thee to Belmont, to fair Portia” (Shakespeare, Act 1, Scene 1, Line 180-183). In this quote, Antonio is doing an act of kindness, he is giving his money to Bassanio, who is known for not having any of his own money, showing that he has no money to pay Antonio back. This is significant because people should not accept gifts of kindness or loans if they cannot be trusted to pay back or be responsible with the loan. Trusting someone is hard to do, but it is harder to continuously trust someone who cannot be trusted. At this point, there is no real reason for someone to go out of their way for a “friend” that cannot pay off their own dept. Therefore, with Bassanio never paying Antonio back, he proves to be a horrible friend to him.
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