Analytical Essay On Much Ado About Nothing

‘Much Ado About Nothing’ was written in 1600 by William Shakespeare. The play is set in Messina, Sicily however it shows typical English comedy characteristics for that time. I find this unusual because not many people travelled far from home. Relationships are shown in various ways throughout the play using themes such as love, romance and patriarchal society. The main relationships which are portrayed are between Hero and Claudio and Beatrice and Benedick. Act two scene one is the masked ball.

Conversations take place between a number of couples; this makes the scene seem lively and gives a sense of movement.

The character Beatrice is attracted to Benedick. However Shakespeare confuses the audience by having Beatrice pass insults to Benedick, “masking” her real feelings. Beatrice says to Benedick “why he is the Prince’s jester, a very dull fool; only his gift is in devising impossible slanders”. Beatrice is teasing Benedick so that her real feelings towards him are concealed.

Don John appears to deliberately try to cause problems in the relationship between Hero and Claudio by claiming “how canst thou cross this marriage? ” Don John is showing his distaste for the marriage his brother arranged.

This is because Don John is jealous of his brother’s higher status and success. Because he is illegitimate, he does what he can to cause problems for his brother and his friends. Act four scene one, the wedding scene, starts with the marriage of Hero and Claudio, who are genuinely in love.

Why Did Shakespeare Write Much Ado About Nothing

However the wedding does not go as planned as Claudio was tricked by Don John into believing Hero had not been faithful the previous night.

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Claudio reveals his cruel side by making this fact known in public at the wedding, disgracing Hero and her family. He adds further insult by saying “give not this rotten orange to your friend”; this is a metaphor claiming Hero is rotten on the inside but outwardly she appears sweet which adds to the continuing theme of appearance versus reality. Claudio also calls her “an approved wanton” which literally means prostitute.

Hero attempts to reclaim her innocence by answering “I talked with no man at that hour, my lord” but otherwise does not defend herself. This is in keeping with the behaviour of women at that time who were expected to be passive and submissive. Leonato chooses to believe the accusations; he shows no mercy for his own child and wishes her dead by stating “death is the fairest cover for her shame that may be wished for. ” This shows that father/daughter relationships weren’t as relaxed as they are now as the daughter had everything planned for her by the father.

Also the quote shows that language was much more dramatic in Shakespearian times. This also reminds us of… Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet where Juliet’s father Lord Capulet was quick to disown her as soon as she went against his word. Further on in act four Benedick says to Beatrice “I do love nothing in the world so well as you” and eventually despite her protests against marriage and relationships, Beatrice acknowledges her concealed love for Benedick by saying “I love you with so much of my heart that none is left to protest”.

Beatrice then demands that Benedick “Kill Claudio” in revenge for the shame inflicted upon her cousin Hero. When Benedick refuses she claims that he does not love her and that they can only be friends. Beatrice was testing Benedick to find out how far he was willing to go to prove his love for her. This also shows the extent people had to go to in those days to uphold family honour. Also in this scene Beatrice declares “O God that I were a man! I would eat his heart in the market place.

” The quotation shows her distaste for Claudio and what he did to her cousin and that she wants Claudio to be humiliated publicly just like Hero. The quote also shows that it was not considered a woman’s place to disagree with a man. She repeats several times her wish to be a “man” which highlights the lack of power women had. Shakespeare has shown that in ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ the play has a moral context in which women were required to be maidens at marriage.

Shakespeare has used some poetic language, particularly in declarations of love between characters; he does this by changing between verse and prose. There is also irony and humour in the form of Beatrice’s disapproval of marriage, which completely changes when the relationship between her and Benedick grows. ? ? ? ? Show preview only The above preview is unformatted text This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Other Poets section. Download this essay Print Save Top Here’s what a star student thought of this essay 4 star(s)

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Analytical Essay On Much Ado About Nothing
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