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Much Ado About Nothing:

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Introduction

Discuss The Character And Role Of Beatrice In "Much Ado About Nothing". What Do You Feel She Adds To The Play For The Audience? The play "Much Ado About Nothing" is set in Sicily, Italy. Shakespeare uses the character Beatrice to contribute to central themes such as Love and Comedy. This central character helps Shakespeare to write about the attitutdes towards women in the late 16th century. Shakespeare present his two leading ladies, Hero and Beatrice, in very different ways. Hero illustrates the perfect 16th Century woman, whereas Beatrice is the complete opposite of this. Shakespear refers to ladies as posessions, available to be bought and cold, Hero is seen as a posession to both her father, and her suitor, "...could the world buy such a jewel?" ...read more.

Middle

Shakespeare uses dramatic irony to surround Beatrices comment "...till god make man of some other metal than Earth..." as the audience already feel that Beatrice knew Benedick before, "...I know you of old..." and that there may be something more than their "merry war". Beatrice's "merry war" with Benedick can be seed as pure hatred or simple teasing between the couple, Shakespeare illustrates that this is teasing as Beatrice has the same interaction with others also. Both these roles are easily acted upon by Beatrice as she isn't restricted by parents as Hero is. Shakespeare uses many literary devices to show Beatrice's intelligence and quick wit, such as oxymorons, "..not till a hot Janurary..." showing the audience Beatrice's quick thinking and adding to the humour of the play by using a play on words - "...a prince's jester, a very dull fool..." ...read more.

Conclusion

Ironically she finally becomes a main character in the main love story of the play. Beatrice is one of the main causes of conflict between Claudio and Benedick, her order of "...kill Claudio..." causing a conflict between Claudio and Benedick and also herself and Benedick. Beatrice is willing to sacrifice her love to see her cousin, Hero, treated rightly and to stand by her cousin. Shakespeare was very close to Queen Elizabeth and many people say the Queen and Shakespeare's main character (Beatrice) in "Much Ado About Nothing" have many similarities, such as; both were witty, Queen Elizabeth often wrote witty poetry, especially sonnets. Queen Elizabeth was also determined to never marry but, unlike Beatrice, she never did. Most people can relate to Shakespeare's play "Much Ado About Nothing" as almost everyone has gone back on a decision that they had so confidently made in the past. ...read more.

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