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'Discuss the comedy in a Midsummer night'sdream'.

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Introduction

'Discuss the comedy in a Midsummer night's dream' 'A midsummer night's dream' is a Shakespearean play containing for different plots. The for plots are Theseus and Hippolyta getting married, the four lovers getting confuse with who they love, set in the woods, the fairy king and queen falling out with each other and the mechanicals who are trying to rehearse a play for Theseus' and Hippolyta's wedding. Comedy is used throughout to make the play more entertaining. It's used in many different ways. In each plot the type of humour suits the characters and the situation they're in. Even before the play begins comedy, or more pointedly irony, has been used to create the bases of the play. Theseus and Hippolyta were classical Greek figures. Theseus who made war on the Amazons, a tribe of female virgin warriors who were hostile to marriage, defeated and married their queen Hippolyta. Hippolyta therefore accepted dominance of man over woman. The irony being the fact that Hippolyta stood against marriage and men in general, but broke this rule by marrying Theseus. Irony in the beginning of the book is used as a framework and pattern for the rest of the play to follow. ...read more.

Middle

Although Oberon and Titania's relationship could be perceived as a comical warning of what marriage may turn into if jealousy and temper take over it should be seriously considered. The comedy shown in Titania and Bottom's interaction is used to contrast the seriousness of Oberon's character. Oberon needs to be serious so the blessings he bestows on Theseus' marriage aren't empty words. The comedy situated in this plot is Titania's infatuation with Bottom. These scenes when played in the right way would be hysterical to any audience. The fact that Bottom is an ass and therefore would normally appear unattractive to Titania, the burlesque of their declarations of love and the appearance on stage must have been extremely entertaining for courtiers in Shakespeare's time and it still is today for modern audiences. The farce and Titania's platonic view of Bottom create humour of the extreme. "Thou art as wise as thou art beautiful," at first glance this comment seems untrue and Bottom is definitely not beautiful, but in fact it's true because he isn't wise at all proving how unbeautiful he really is. Bottom strives to produce elegant phrases to try and fit in with the situation around him yet fails miserably because his subject matter remains homely. ...read more.

Conclusion

The characters shown in this plot are laced with endearing human qualities. Each character is humorous on its own: Flute's modesty about his beard; which in fact does not exist; Snug's anxieties of learning his part when in fact he has no lines. Bottom is by far the funniest character. The over exaggeration of Bottom's desire to play all parts creates a pattern of comedy. His whole dealing with Titania would be humorous to an audience. Bottom's malapropism and misplaced epithets add to the stupidity and over exaggeration of the character. "You were best to call them generally, man by man...." H meant individually here. "A lover is more condoling". He means expressive of grief. There are many other sentences Bottom confuses with other things. Personally, I believe the mechanicals to be the funniest plot in the play and it's totally different to all the other plots because it's written in prose. Overall, Shakespeare uses the comedy to contrast with the seriousness of the underlying story of love and marriage. In each plot there are different types of comedy used: in the mechanicals burlesque and farce; in the plot of Theseus and Hippolyta, wit, sarcasm and irony are the main types of comedy used. It would have given entertainment to the courtiers in Shakespeare's time, as it does today. Also, the play constantly jibes at the old fashioned plays of those times. ...read more.

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