• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Discuss how Shakespeare creates comedy in “The Merry Wives Of Windsor” in the scenes we have studied. Take into consideration the use of language and dramatic devices and structures and how these create comic effect.

Extracts from this document...


Discuss how Shakespeare creates comedy in "The Merry Wives Of Windsor" in the scenes we have studied. Take into consideration the use of language and dramatic devices and structures and how these create comic effect. Shakespeare wrote the play mainly because of Queen Elizabeth the 1st. She requested Shakespeare write the play because she had seen a character, Falstaff in the play Henry IV part A. After seeing Falstaff in this play and learning about his character she thought he would be a good character to base another play on. Queen Elizabeth gave Shakespeare fourteen days to write the play and he called it "The Merry Wives of Windsor" The Merry Wives of Windsor is based around the year 1597 when it was most likely written. The characters were a mix of higher class people who own family estates and people like falstaff who are low life's that drink most of the time, which are resorted to living above pubs or in a basement somewhere. The play has two plots to it, a main plot and a sub-plot. The sub-plot is involved with Anne Page, the daughter of Page and Mistress Page; Anne Page is to be married to Fenton, a man of higher birth but less money. ...read more.


She express hatred to all men in this line "Why, I'll exhibit a bill in the parliament for the putting down of men. She also talks of sweet revenged and uses very sardonic language here, "for revenged I will be, as sure as his guts are made of puddings." Mistress Ford enters and they both have something do discuss with each other which is about the letter they have both received from Falstaff. Throughout the rest of the scene Mistress Ford and Page pack rhetorical questions into it like "what doth he think of us?" and extended metaphors, Mistress Ford says, "`Boarding,' call you it? I'll be sure to keep him above deck." Mistress Page says, "So will I; if he come under my hatches, I'll never to sea again. Let's be revenged on him; let's appoint him a meeting." They both want to get falstaff back for sending these letters to both of them. In Act II Scene 2 falstaff opens the conversation with telling Pistol that he will not lend him a penny whilst at the same time showing us how tight he is with his money which around the whole line he says is very ironic. It is ironic because falstaff probably asks for money off everyone nearly everyday as a sort of job of his. ...read more.


The whole play is based on bawdy humor with stunts like falstaff being put into a buck basket and the joke they play on him in the supposed haunted forest. Also there Is a lot of imagery throughout the play for instance, "one that is well-nigh worn to pieces with age to show himself a young gallant!" this is said by Mistress Page who means that Falstaff is far too old to be endeavoring to woo a lady and he is making a fool of himself by trying to act like a young more desirable man. The effect is to show her scorn and contempt for Falstaff and it also creates a humorous image of him. As we know Shakespeare is always trying to poke fun at Falstaff and we can tell by the things that happen to him. When the play was first performed it would have been in front of a Jacobean audience where the Jacobean audience could actually relate to the plot even though they probably had no clue that it was based around their way of living with slobs like Falstaff. If it was performed under a modern audience these days then I am sure the audience would get all the hidden jokes contained in the play and also be able to follow it quite easily. Nick Bidwell ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Henry V section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Henry V essays

  1. Media Comparative Essay: (in the medium of film) concerning the 2 well known film ...

    Branagh's character seems too mysterious to fit in with the background, which counters with Olivier who blends well into the background with his faceless approach. Olivier's more successful style is also able to maintain the effect of intensity throughout this section.

  2. English/ English Literature Joint Coursework Folder

    We are seeing Pistol in this version as Henry does. The purpose of this is to create a sense of anonymity and hidden authority in Henry that is not conveyed well in the Branagh adaptation. His carries a much more (periodical)

  1. What are the functions of the Chorus in Shakespeare's Henry V?

    Also, it really helps to emphasise the role of the low lifes. If the chorus had continued, the audience would have wished to see the traitors, and the contrast of the good and bad would sink into the background. Where Branagh stops means we see the low lifes directly contrasted with the idealistic language of the chorus.

  2. Henry V - differences between young and old.

    young and the old in this play as certain young characters seem to mirror certain old characters in nature. For example, Bolingbroke communicates an equally explosive disposition as Hotspur, which is possibly due to the constant attachment to courtly life.

  1. Does Henry V offer a patriotic version of Henry's campaigns on the surface while ...

    are neutral in their views to the King so any view they have on him will only be dictated by his actions in this play. As it turns out Bates and Williams look on the King very dubiously, in line 107 and 108 bates says 'He may show what outward

  2. The Subplot: Consider the significance of the subplot and examine Shakespeare's dramatic use of ...

    The characters that Shakespeare uses in the subplot are the lowlife companions of Henry's youth. They are mainly cowardly thief's, who only go to war to steal; yet we find out in a speech by the Boy that they are not talented thieves, as they sell things they have stolen

  1. Explore Shakespeare's presentation of Hal and Falstaff in the tavern in Act II Scene ...

    This could parallel King Henry IV and Hotspur trying to outdo each other, with Falstaff paralleling Hotspur, and Hal paralleling his father. This links the Sub-Plot to the main plot. I would direct this line with Hal saying it with self-satisfaction, and Hal sounding clever and smart.

  2. "Falstaff is a dreadful character in every way yet the audience cannot help but ...

    In the same scene he is nasty to the hostess, blaming her for the picking of his pocket and calling her a woman, therefore unreliable. However a much more darker side shows when he leads his, "ragamuffins to be peppered" in the battlefield and claiming that his men were food

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work