Essay on Inconstancy in Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing

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Inconstancy in Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) explains inconstancy as the recurrent and generally unexpected or impulsive change from one condition to another. It is the state or quality of being inconstant and unfaithful by virtue of being undependable or deceitful. Set in Messina, Sicily, Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing is a very popular play generally viewed as one of his happiest comedies and is often performed in theatres. However, the playfulness and cheerfulness of the play is haunted by a cloud of melancholy which tells readers of the potential dangers and pain that can result from miscommunication, deceit and treachery. This play has two entwining plots; one revolves around the…show more content…
Some critics have argued that in the end, Benedict and Beatrice are not significantly different from Claudio and Hero (Bevington 218). The play reveals a fundamental inadequacy of the human nature in dealing with the social world which has two mutually mistrusting genders. Humans are likely to harbour outrageous tendencies, even when they think they are being very sensible and their inadequacies are what cause so much “ado about nothing”. The important question is whether a person can survive all that “meaningless ado” (Auden 115). Leonato stays in Messina with Hero, his daughter, Beatrice, a humorous and clever niece and, Antonio, his elderly brother and Beatrice’s father. Leonato welcomes some friends, soldiers from war: Claudio, Benedict, Don Pedro and Don John. Claudio immediately falls in love with Hero and decides to marry her while Beatrice and Benedict start their war of humorous insults but eventually fall in love. Don John plans to disrupt everyone’s happiness by staging a scene where Claudio and Don Pedro see a woman they believe to be Hero making love to another man. Claudio is represented as an inconsistent and disreputable lover who is quick to doubt his bride-to-be, Hero. He gets angry and accuses Hero of unfaithfulness on their wedding day and leaves her at the altar. Hero’ family device a plan to fake her death and wait until the truth comes out. The truth about Hero’s innocence eventually comes out and Claudio grieves for her

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