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The Merchant Of Venice - Antonio- Antonio is a wealthy merchant in the city of Venice Although central to the play Antonio is portrayed by Shakespeare as an outcast It seems that Antonio is chronically depressed and is not involved in the social atmosphere that is thriving in Venice - In sooth I know not why I am so sad It wearies me you say it wearies you But how I caught it Found it or came by it What stuff tis made of whereof it is born I am to learn1 Along with Shylock both men seem bitter and have difficulty in expressing their emotions On many occasions friends such as Salerio and Bassanio have questioned his sadness trying to find an explanation for their great unhappiness with themselves and with the world - Salerio But tell not me I know Antonio Is sad to think upon his merchandise2 Antonio Believe me no I thank my fortune for it My ventures are not in one bottom trusted Nor to one place nor is my whole estate Upon the fortune of this present year Therefore my merchandise makes me not sad3 Salanio Why then are you in love4 Antonio Fie fie5 The mystery of Antonios sadness remains as he dismisses the prospect that his sadness is related to his ships or a lost love Uninterested in the world of suitors and marriage Antonio is left without his lifelong companion Bassanio after he travelled to Belmont to woo Portia Early in the play another side of Antonio is revealed Antonio is displayed as a hard cruel man although a Christian he displays hatred and contempt towards the Jewish race usurers and especially towards Shylock After kicking and spitting upon Shylock Antonio
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