The Best Shakespeare Villains Fictional Characters
+Vote List
by  tags 931 votes 166 voters 16,304 views 31 items f p @

The Best Shakespeare Villains

This is a list about the best Shakespeare villains; it answers the question, “Who are the bad guys in William Shakespeare’s plays?” Every play has a hero and a villain: who, in your book is the top villain of all-times in one of Shakespeare’s plays?While most villains are purely evil, the interesting thing about Shakespeare is that his villains are not always overtly evil. Some of them seem to only be facing a moral dilemma of sorts; they’re not the typical in-your-face evil plotters like other stories usually have. As a result, a lot of Shakespeare’s villains play very subtle roles.

In addition to characters that are dubbed a villain but don’t play the typically evil roles that we think of when we hear that term, Shakespeare’s best plays also included some of the most notoriously evil characters in history, including: Richard III, Iago, Cornwall and Aaron the Moor. He was also notorious for making the audience fine sympathy for the bad guys (like Julius Caesar). The up-and-down emotions he caused the audience to feel are what made him famous. Shakespeare was also known for making his villainous characters seem incredibly real, struggling with common problems we each face like jealousy, heartbreak, greed and bitterness. He seemed to thrive on showing his audience the ironies of being judgmental since we are each the same in the end.


    • Region
  • See list ranked by
L The List
Z
B Comments
& Embed
G Options
2rerank list
  1. 1
    + 80
    - 14

    Othello

    ) open
  2. 2
    + 45
    - 19

    Macbeth

    ) open
  3. 3
    + 33
    - 11

    King Lear

    ) open
  4. 4
    + 32
    - 12

    Richard III

    ) open
  5. 5
    + 33
    - 13
    ) open
  6. 6
    + 29
    - 12

    Titus Andronicus

    ) open
  7. 7
    + 22
    - 7

    Aaron the Moor Titus Andronicus

    ) open
  8. 8
    + 22
    - 9

    Goneril King Lear

    ) open
  9. 9
    + 17
    - 7

    Titus Andronicus

    ) open
  10. 10
    + 18
    - 10

    Much Ado About Nothing

    ) open
  11. 11
    + 24
    - 16

    The Merchant of Venice

    ) open
  12. 12
    + 25
    - 17

    Macbeth

    ) open
  13. 13
    + 15
    - 8

    The Tempest

    ) open
  14. 14
    + 16
    - 9

    Julius Caesar

    ) open
  15. 15
    + 19
    - 12

    King Lear

    ) open
  16. 16
    + 14
    - 8

    Cornwall King Lear

    ) open
  17. 17
    + 23
    - 18

    Romer and Juliet

    ) open
  18. 19
    + 11
    - 8

    Angelo Measure for Measure

    ) open
  19. 20
    + 8
    - 7

    King John

    ) open
  20. 21
    + 7
    - 6

    Cymbeline

    ) open
  21. 22
    + 6
    - 6

    The Two Gentlemen of Verona

    ) open
  22. 23
    + 7
    - 8

    Cymbeline

    ) open
  23. 24
    + 6
    - 8

    A Midsummer Night's Dream

    ) open
  24. 25
    + 5
    - 7

    As You Like It

    ) open
  25. 26
    + 3
    - 6
    No image

    added by oldebenflood Richard II

    ) open
  26. 27
    + 5
    - 12

    Lancelot Gobbo The Merchant of Venice

    ) open
  27. 28
    + 16
    - 27

    A Midsummer Night's Dream

    ) open
  28. 29
    + 9
    - 19

    Henry IV

    ) open
  29. 30
    + 4
    - 14

    The Taming of the Shrew

    ) open
  30. 31
    + 8
    - 34

    Hamlet

    ) open
32 +

Something missing? Add it!

L List Options 2 Rerank List B Comments & Embed z Share Next List >

viewers of this list also saw...

more popular lists