Much Ado About Nothing: Pride and Prejudice

1431 WordsNov 23, 20066 Pages
In Much Ado About Nothing, William Shakespeare depicts both Benedick and Beatrice as characters with one major flaw: both are full of pride. With the use of the masquerade scene, as well as the orchard scenes, Shakespeare allows the characters to realize their awry characteristic. By realizing their erroneous pride, Benedick and Beatrice are able to correct this and not only become better citizens, but fall in love. From the very first scene in the play, Beatrice is shown as a character who is very prideful, and very protective of it. Benedick's line "What, my dear Lady Disdain! Are you yet living?"(1.1.114) gives a clue to how much pride Beatrice has. Benedick's reference to Beatrice as "Lady Disdain" shows how Beatrice thinks she is…show more content…
She throws away her old self, stating "Contempt, farewell! and maiden pride, adieu!"(3.1.109). She also choses not to be so protective of her independence and declares love for Benedick, claiming "I will requite thee, Taming my wild heart to thy loving hand"(3.1.111-112). However, the true change in Beatrice does not show until the first church scene in which Claudio publicly humiliates Hero. Beatrice shows deep concern for her cousin Hero, the first time in the play where Beatrice shows concern for another. She is the first to claim Claudio is a liar and declare "on my soul, my cousin is belied!"(4.1.145). Beatrice then proves once again that she is a better person by demanding justice for Hero is met. Through Benedick, Beatrice plots to right the wrong and asks Benedick to "Kill Claudio"(4.1.290). It is in this scene as well that Beatrice, proving a complete turnaround in behavior, confesses to Benedick that "I love you with so much of my heart that none is left to protest "(4.1.287-288). This shows Beatrice transforming from someone who would scoff at marriage and love, declaring things like "I may sit in a corner and cry heigh-ho for a husband"(2.1.312-313), to someone who easily embraces love from the person she once mocked. But such a dramatic change is seen in her love as well. Benedick's change begins the same way in which Beatrice's transformation commences. In Leonato's garden (once
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