Thoughtful Laughter in the Play Cyrano de Bergerac by Edmond Rostand

Within the play, Cyrano de Bergerac, the writer Edmond Rostand induces thoughtful laughter through the utilization of a frivolous and relaxed tone satirical diction, and unexpected circumstances which oppose the general social paradigm. “Your nose is…..very big. Yes, very. Ha! Is that all?” Cyrano is mocked for his abnormally large nose, yet it’s clear that a serious tone eludes the dialogue, for it excludes any vehement response from either character. Thus, as the tone remains to be sardonic, it’s valid to assert that the thoughtful laughter is expressed through the frivolous and relaxed tone.

Cyrano incorporates irreverent diction to humor within the play. “I need eloquence, and I have none! I’ll lend you mine! Lend me your conquering physical charm, and together we’ll form a romantic hero! What do you mean? Do you feel capable of repeating what I tell you every day? Are you suggesting… Roxane won’t be disillusioned! Together, we can win her heart! Will you let my soul pass from my leather jerkin and lodge beneath your embroidered doublet?” At the end of Act II, Cyrano and Christian talk about winning Roxane’s love, yet it requires combining their powers; Cyrano’s wit and poetry, and Christian’s good look and charm, to woo her.

Initially, it seems that the blending of their perfections results in nothing more than a flawless composite character, yet it’s irrational to think that combining personalities will constitute the perfect being, for as long as they are two separate people, she cannot conceive blending them as one person.

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Spontaneous circumstances are abundant throughout the play, for it constitutes the idea of Cyrano’s irrational and satirical situation. “And now? Your true self has prevailed over your outer appearance. I now love you for your soul alone. Oh, Roxane! …But you can be happy now: your thoughts outshine your face. Your handsomeness was what first attracted me, but not that my eyes are open I no longer see it!” Just before Christian is about to go off to battle, Roxane tells him that he loves him for his “soul alone” and no longer for his “outer appearance”.. Roxane rejects Cyrano’s mixture of inner and outer beauty in favor of the poetry and inner beauty that she initially attributes to Christian. Christian, however, understands that he had nothing to do with the poetry and that Roxane roves Cyrano without even knowing it. The moment is ironic since what Roxane believes to be her statement of true, lasting love for Christian is based upon a character trait that Christian does not possess.

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Thoughtful Laughter in the Play Cyrano de Bergerac by Edmond Rostand. (2022, Jun 22). Retrieved from

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