Williams Shakespeare’s play The Merchant of Venice was originally entitled “The Jew of Venice”. Shakespeare’s antagonist Shylock was Jewish but it is unclear if and improbable that Shakespeare actually knew anyone who was Jewish as Judaism was not permitted in England during the 16th century. England did not have an inquisition against Judaism but fines were imposed, imprisonment was exacted, and Jews were often beaten if found to be practicing their faith as it was expected they convert to Chri...
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