Love In Orsino

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Duke Orsino: A Manifestation of Irrational Love Through Wealth, Pain & Egotism
Quotes done in the following form: Act, Scene, Line

Most of the major characters in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night experience some form of love or marriage. Whether it’s unrequited like with Antonio and Malvolio, or it is something seemingly unattainable like with Duke Orsino. Regardless, it is clear that love is prevalent as one of the central themes Shakespeare seems to emphasize in Twelfth Night. With that, we see him communicate different interpretations and feelings regarding the subject. He does this with the medium of melodramatic characters. In this essay, I will elaborate on the opinions of love that Shakespeare communicates through one of the leading characters:
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He is one who is supposedly love-struck from the elegant and beautiful Olivia, yet she does not feel the same way. Instead, someone else feels the same regarding Duke Orsino: Viola (Cesario). Throughout the play, it is clear Duke Orsino is all about himself, as he places himself at the center of all situations, constantly repeating personal pronouns (Me, my, I) This complicated love triangle egotist Orsino encounters with his lavish lifestyle makes him a perfect form of communication for Shakespeare to share ideas about love and marriage. Some simple themes that Shakespeare communicates are that love is indeed something that occurs first sight, as with Viola, Orsino, and Olivia, but also that it is something one must learn that they cannot control. Viola, Orsino, and Olivia all realize this to a degree, and Orsino ends up changing his love for Olivia to love for Viola (other factors contribute as…show more content…
The fantasy of Olivia he supposedly unconditionally loves is not about Olivia, but all about himself. Not only this, but Orsino is easily convinced to return the deep affection of Viola, possibly because the Duke focuses entirely on his success and desires in love rather than genuine affection. Perhaps, Orsino only developed these feelings for Olivia because he wanted more luxurious things in life. Orsino had great food, servants, and a giant castle. The one thing he lacked in was love. Therefore, the Duke wished to have the most beautiful countess in all of the land: Olivia, to continue owning more and more luxurious things. Through this, Shakespeare conveys that an egotist and wealthy man cannot genuinely love if he does not fixate the gain of love on himself. Not only this, but it also continues the previous message that one might be irrationally obsessed with the idea of love rather than a person due to all of the pleasures there are to
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