The Best Shakespeare Villains Fictional Characters
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The Best Shakespeare Villains

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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.
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  1. 1
    Up 18
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    Othello More
  2. 2
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    new! Shylock

    The Merchant of Venice More
  3. 3
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    Hamlet More
  4. 4
    Up 8
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    Macbeth More
  5. 5
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    Macbeth More
  6. 6
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    Richard II More
  7. 7
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    Romer and Juliet More
  8. 8
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    A Midsummer Night's Dream More
  9. 9
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    King Lear More
  10. 10
    Up 5
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    Titus Andronicus More
  11. 11
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    King Lear More
  12. 12
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    The Two Gentlemen of Verona More
  13. 13
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    A Midsummer Night's Dream More
  14. 14
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    Cymbeline More
  15. 15
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    Richard III More
  16. 16
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    Measure for Measure More
  17. 17
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    Titus Andronicus More
  18. 18
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    The Taming of the Shrew More
  19. 19
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    As You Like It More
  20. 20
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    Cymbeline More
  21. 21
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    Julius Caesar More
  22. 22
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    The Tempest More
  23. 23
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    Lancelot Gobbo

    The Merchant of Venice More
  24. 24
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    King John More
  25. 25
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    Much Ado About Nothing More
  26. 26
    Up 3
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    Goneril

    King Lear More
  27. 27
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    Henry IV More
  28. 28
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    Aaron the Moor

    Titus Andronicus More
  29. 29
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    Hamlet More
  30. 30
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    Cornwall

    King Lear More
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