New Month, New Play (or “Wake me up when September ends…”)

October is here, and King John is dead!

Now, we have The Merchant of Venice, and one of the most famous (or infamous, depending on where you stand on the matter) characters in all of Shakespeare: Shylock the Jew.

But don’t make the mistake of thinking that Shylock is our TITLE character (or even our main one). ┬áHe isn’t, as we can see by tite presented in the First Quarto edition:

The Most Excellent History of the Merchant of Venice: With the Extreme Cruelty of Shylock the Jew towards the Said Merchant, in Cutting a [?] Pound of his Flesh; and the Obtaining of Portia by the Choice of Three Chests.

No, the “Said Merchant” is Antonio, and as we shall see, he is (not only “said” but) sad.

But more on that later…