Examples Of Greed In The Alchemist

2223 Words9 Pages
Understanding Greed through The Alchemist Greed has a biological basis, as seen in human nature. Humans are constantly eager to compete and accumulate power as a result of their greed. Greed is defined as a powerful desire for materials, especially money and wealth. It is not wrong to set high goals for the future; however, many goals spring from greedy desires. Through The Alchemist; Ben Jonson demonstrates how the characters are eager to satisfy their greedy desires without considering the outcome of those actions. Throughout the play, the characters blindly act without considering what may happen in the future as the results of their foolish decisions. The Alchemist was performed in 1610; during the severe plague in London. Jonson wrote this play for citizens of London who were returning home after the plague ended. However, some of the Londoners’ homes might have been used for scheme businesses, such as Lovewit’s. Alchemy was a common practice during the Middle Ages; many wanted to transform their metals in for gold instead of applying themselves to hard work (Baskervile). This is one of many examples during the Middle Ages, where people were sidetracked and mesmerized by their greedy desires to acquire wealth. In this example, they underestimated any and all consideration of the alchemist’s ulterior motives as a thief and schemer.…show more content…
One example of this is lucidly observed in the argument between Subtle and Face, found in the first act of The Alchemist: Face. […] Your stills, your glasses, your materials; / Built you a furnace, drew you customers, / Advanced all you black arts; let you, besides, / A house to practice in
Open Document