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Is Lucio seen as just a comedian in 'Measure for Measure'?

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Introduction

Danielle Hall Is Lucio seen as just a comedian in 'Measure for Measure'? Lucio's character is a mixture of many different traits. He is a go-between, a good friend, a heartless lecher, a comic, a liar, and a rebel to the end. He is a bridge between the world of the bawds and the world of the main characters like the duke, Angelo and Claudio. He is a true and loyal friend to Claudio and a loose friend to the bawds. He has a strong sexual interest in women. He is a comedian, and many of his jokes have sexual undertones. He lies and slanders the duke to his hidden disguise as a Friar; and then slandered the 'Friar' to the duke. Claudio, sentenced to death for fornication, is late to meet Lucio. Lucio jokes with two gentlemen about soldiers, prostitutes and venereal diseases: "Behold, behold, where Madam Mitigation comes. I have purchased as many diseases under her roof as come to/judge." ...read more.

Middle

Lucio accuses the duke of being a woman chaser: "he's a better woodman than thou tak'st him for". Lucio contradicts himself when he says the duke shouldn't have gone to Hungary as he felt that he had neglected his duty: "Thou conclud'st like a sanctimonious pirate". Lucio is hypercritical when he says Pompey should be imprisoned, and so refuses to stand bail because Lucio believes that Pompey has done wrong for being a bawd, although Lucio has been a customer in Brothels many times. By reaching a close point to the truth with the 'Friar' the audience perceives Lucio as sharp, intelligent and witty. He uses humour a lot, which is why he is seen as a 'clown', alike to Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet, Lucio goes between the two worlds. Some of Lucio's jokes have sexual implications: "Carnally, she says", which is also seen as sarcastic. He feels that marrying Kate Keepdown, the mother of his child and a prostitute, is "worse than hanging". ...read more.

Conclusion

He shows an outer glitter that covers inner corruption. Lucio acts as a foil for several of the characters in the play while at the same time functioning as a social barometer for the disease in Vienna. While Claudio has violated the laws of the city and some audiences would say Gods Law and is being punished for it he shows repentance bespeaking an inner moral integrity: LUCIO: Why, how now, Claudio! Whence comes this restraint? CLAUDIO: From too much liberty, my Lucio, liberty/A thirsty evil, and when we drink we die. Angelo and Lucio are judged and found guilty, but both are forgiven. Lucio is forced to marry a "punk" and he feels it is "pressing to death, whipping, and hanging". Other audiences have seen Lucio as a character who has decency, shrewdness and clear mindedness and perceptive. I agree with this statement and strongly disagree that Lucio is just a comic. I believe Lucio is a character of many different traits, including that of a comic. ...read more.

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