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Explore and compare the romantic relationships in the play; Beatrice and Benedick, Claudio and Hero

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Introduction

Explore and compare the romantic relationships in the play; Beatrice and Benedick, Claudio and Hero The theme of love is the fundamental premise in this play. Shakespeare has shrewdly created two relationships intertwining and unfolding throughout the play that contrast with each other dramatically and comically. The story of Beatrice and Benedick takes centre stage in the play and because of there witty and extroverted personalities we immediately warm towards them. Hero and Claudio however are more conservative in nature making their relationship more acute and serious. Both relationships are so diverse they are easy to compare with each other. The relationship between Claudio and Hero comes across as being rather anomalous and complex. The idea of love at first sight was very popular when Shakespeare was writing. Shakespeare uses this theme in other plays he has written. Romeo and Juliet meet and fall in love at once, just like the apparent Claudio and Hero in Much ado about nothing. Talk of Claudio's love for Hero begins straight away in Act one Scene one. Claudio tells Benedick of his love enquiring metaphorically 'Can the world buy such a jewel?' of which Benedick replies 'yea and a case to put it into.' ...read more.

Middle

This is another piece of evidence that shows us that Beatrice and Benedick were once more than just friends. Beatrice speaks of how she had Benedicks heart for a while, but lost it. There seems to be a sense of underlying regret and discontent in the fact that they are no longer together. Beatrice reiterates in this scene her objective never to marry, however her attitude seems a little altered. An undeniable preoccupation marks her words as she watches the betrothal of Hero to Claudio: "Good Lord, for alliance! There goes everyone to the world but I, and I am sunburnt. I may sit in a corner and cry 'Heigh-ho for a husband!'" Beatrice jokes, but it is difficult to ascertain how deeply she takes this matter. Don Pedro's unexpected offer of himself to her in marriage also seems both flippant and serious, and Beatrice's gentle rejection of him forces us to wonder whether she really does want to get married. Maybe Beatrice does want to get married but the man she loves hasn't asked. Towards the end of Act scene Don Pedro and Leanato hold conversation in which they praise Beatrice's character, but also suggest that Beatrice and Benedick would make a suitable couple. ...read more.

Conclusion

Somehow, both Claudio and Hero are prepared to fall in love and marry. They are young and hardly know each other which make the whole affair slightly implausible, compared to Beatrice and Benedick who are older and so adamant to marry, but who eventually show the stronger love. It appears that Claudio has fallen in love with Hero on looks alone. In the case of Benedick it is apparent that a woman should be more than just pretty, as he appears to disagree with Claudio's fascination with the beauty of Hero. Benedick's respect for Beatrice is, at first, clouded by fear and confusion, not based only on her appearance, but on her character and vibrant spirit. An established believer in his own bachelorhood, Benedick would not be persuaded from his principles for anything less than a intelligent woman of inner splendour. This is how he differs dramatically from Claudio whose first impression is based merely on Hero's beauty. To me Claudio and Hero's relationship comes across as a childish romance which although is supposed to be the main storyline, is over cast by the passion between Beatrice and Benedick. Both Claudio and Hero are young and innocent. This shines through in a number of different ways throughout the novel. Hero ...read more.

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