Villains The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked  

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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 Shakespearean 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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Iago is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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Lady Macbeth is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

3
+ - 77 27
Edmund is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

4
+ - 87 25
Richard III is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

5
+ - 70 27
King Claudius is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

6
+ - 64 18
Aaron the Moor is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked
Aaron the Moor

7
+ - 49 20
Goneril is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

8
+ - 54 21
Aaron is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

9
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Macbeth is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

10
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Cassius is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

11
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Tybalt is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

12
+ - 48 35
Shylock is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

13
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Regan is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

14
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Don John is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

15
+ - 34 18
Cornwall is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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Iachimo is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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Richard II of England is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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Caliban is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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+ - 16 15
The Queen is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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Duke Frederick is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

21
+ - 11 15
Proteus is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

22
+ - 12 18
King John is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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+ - 1 5
Borachio is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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+ - 9 21
Egeus is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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Lancelot Gobbo is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked
Lancelot Gobbo

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+ - 16 37
Falstaff is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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Puck is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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+ - 2 13
Claudio is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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+ - 8 31
Katherine is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked

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+ - 21 61
Hamlet is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Shakespearean Villains, Ranked