The Jew of Malta | Study Guide

Christopher Marlowe

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Course Hero. "The Jew of Malta Study Guide." Course Hero. 7 May 2018. Web. 13 Dec. 2018. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Jew-of-Malta/>.

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Course Hero. (2018, May 7). The Jew of Malta Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved December 13, 2018, from https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Jew-of-Malta/

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Course Hero. "The Jew of Malta Study Guide." May 7, 2018. Accessed December 13, 2018. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Jew-of-Malta/.

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Course Hero, "The Jew of Malta Study Guide," May 7, 2018, accessed December 13, 2018, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Jew-of-Malta/.

The Jew of Malta | Characters

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Character Description
Barabas Barabas is the play's protagonist, the immensely wealthy "Jew of Malta." His name is borrowed directly from the New Testament, where Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea, frees a criminal named Barabas, on the occasion of the trial and crucifixion of Jesus. Read More
Abigail Abigail is the daughter of Barabas. Arguably the most ethical character in a drama featuring scoundrels, Abigail dies midway through the story. Read More
Ferneze Ferneze is the Christian governor of Malta. Late in the play, he seems to join forces with Barabas against the Turks, but he proves to be the source of Barabas's own destruction. Read More
Lodowick Lodowick is the son of Ferneze, governor of Malta. A suitor of Barabas's daughter Abigail, Lodowick woos the girl, ostensibly for her beauty, but there are numerous hints that he is primarily attracted by the riches she will inherit from her father. Read More
Mathias Mathias is the son of Katherine, a high-status lady of Malta who strongly dislikes the Jews. Despite his mother's prejudice, however, he is attracted to Abigail and is willing to fight his rival Lodowick for her. Read More
Ithamore Ithamore is a Turkish slave purchased by Barabas. Proud of his villainy, Ithamore rivals his master in evil scheming. Read More
Abbess The Abbess is the nun superior in charge of the convent that is established at the site of Barabas's home on the orders of Ferneze.
Friar Barnardine Friar Barnardine is one of two friars that play important roles in the ranks of Christians in the play. Beneath their piety, however, the friars are portrayed as greedy, quarrelsome, and potentially violent.
Bassoes The Bassoes are high-ranking Turkish officials.
Bellamira Bellamira is a courtesan. She seduces Ithamore, with an eye on the wealth of the Turkish slave's master. In the latter part of the play she becomes a blackmailer.
Martin del Bosco Martin del Bosco is the vice admiral of the Spanish navy. He persuades Ferneze to resist the Turks.
Callapine Callapine is a Turkish official who often serves as a spokesman for Calymath.
Calymath Selim Calymath is the son of the Turkish sultan.
Friar Jacomo Friar Jacomo is a colleague of Friar Barnardine, though he is attached to a different monastery.
First Jew The first Jew is one of three Jews who visit Barabas to tell him that all Jews have been ordered by the Turks to gather in the senate-house.
Second Jew The second Jew is one of three Jews who visit Barabas to tell him that all Jews have been ordered by the Turks to gather in the senate-house.
Third Jew The third Jew is one of three Jews who visit Barabas to tell him that all Jews have been ordered by the Turks to gather in the senate-house.
Katherine Katherine is the mother of Mathias and is prejudiced against Jews. She especially hates Barabas.
First knight The first knight is one of the Maltese knights, a Christian military organization, who support Ferneze.
Second knight The second knight is one of the Maltese knights, a Christian military organization, who support Ferneze.
Machiavel Machiavel is the speaker of the prologue. His character is based on the Florentine philosopher Niccolò Machiavelli.
First merchant The first merchant is one of two merchants who visit Barabas to tell him of the success and whereabouts of his ships.
Second merchant The second merchant is one of two merchants who visit Barabas to tell him of the success and whereabouts of his ships.
First officer The first officer is one of two Maltese officers who serve Ferneze.
Second officer The second officer is one of two Maltese officers who serve Ferneze.
Pilia-Borza Pilia-Borza is a dishonest attendant of Bellamira.
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