The Jew of Malta | Study Guide

Christopher Marlowe

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The Jew of Malta | Act 5, Scene 3 | Summary



Having toured the city and repaired the damage caused by the siege, Calymath expresses admiration for Malta's strategic position in the Mediterranean. A messenger enters to deliver Barabas's invitation to a banquet before Calymath sets sail for Turkey. Calymath is hesitant to accept at first, but the messenger inveigles him with the mention of a gigantic pearl as a gift and with further details about the banquet: the Turkish troops will dine at a monastery on the edge of the city. Calymath gives his assent.


This brief scene contributes suspense to the story, since Calymath's hesitation conveys a hint of suspicion regarding Barabas's plans. The messenger's description of the giant pearl, however, obviously appeals to the Turkish leader. By this time, it is not surprising that Barabas knows full well how to bait his trap.

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