Much Ado About Nothing Analysis

1387 Words Sep 25th, 2014 6 Pages
Much Ado About Nothing Analysis
Beginning in 15th century Messina in the aftermath of a war, the play opens with the army of Don Pedro of Aragon arriving in the country and being welcomed by Leonato, Messina’s governor. Count Claudio, hero of the war, falls in love with Leonato’s daughter Hero at first sight, and Don Pedro promises to woo Hero for Claudio. Don John, Don Pedro’s brother who is resentful of both Claudio and Don Pedro for defeating him in the just-ended war and himself being a bastard son, ineligible of heirdom, hopes to find a way to ruin Claudio’s impending happiness.
After Don Pedro woos Hero for Claudio, he proposes that everyone trick Benedick and Beatrice into falling in love. Don John and his henchman Borachio agree
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Claudio and Don Pedro appear for the second wedding while the women of the wedding party enter masked. When Claudio takes the hand of Leonato’s “niece” and agrees to marry her, she unmasks and an overjoyed Claudio learns she is the yet living Hero. Benedick and Beatrice agree to marry, playfully only out of pity for one another. Claudio is forgiven by all and a double wedding is set, but not before a traditional Shakespearian closing dance.
Benedick is a young lord of Padua in the service of Don Pedro. He is a good friend of Claudio and a fine soldier, but quite the womanizing jester and mischievous knave. Benedick’s greatest role is that of a witty enemy and reluctant lover of Beatrice, who he engages with in a perennial competition to outwit the other. Benedick is untrusting of women, certain they are the causes of men’s humiliation and downfall, and expresses a fear not of marriage, though he rallies against the archaic and doomed practice most of the play, but to the betrayal inside it. To be cuckolded; to “Pluck off the bull 's horns and set them in [his] forehead.” (1.1.262)
Beatrice is the niece of Leonato, Governor of Messina, and cousin and friend of Hero, Leonato’s fair and naïve daughter. She prides herself on being an independent and unattached woman, reveling in her own wit and bantering humor. In the text it is hinted that Beatrice and Benedick
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