Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare Essays

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Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare The complex plot - full of mistaken identities, misdirected passions, high comedy, low tricks, and unexpected poignancy - begins as a ship, carrying the identical twins Viola and Sebastian is wrecked off the coast of a fictional country, Illyria. Viola is washed ashore on this alien coast and becomes convinced that her beloved brother is dead. She learns that she is near the home of Olivia, a young countess who is also in mourning, for her recently dead father and brother. Accordingly, Olivia has sworn to have no contact with men for seven years, and in particular she is rejecting the amorous advances of the young Duke Orsino Desperate to know how to…show more content…
And she, mistaken, seems to dote on me." When Viola's twin Sebastian suddenly emerges, alive and well, this triangle is complicated almost to a breaking point. While Orsino, Viola, Olivia, and Sebastian are preoccupied with their romantic destinies, Olivia's household is equally occupied with a power struggle between the ill-tempered, repressive steward, Malvolio, and her boisterous and bibulous uncle, Sir Toby Belch, accompanied by his vacuous, misfit friend, Sir Andrew Aguecheek, and Olivia's maid, Maria. For his own financial ends, Sir Toby encourages Sir Andrew to woo Olivia, while plotting Malvolio's humiliation. Throughout, Feste, the most enigmatic of entertainers, comes and goes between the two households, sparing no one he meets his barbed insights and his wit. Written in 1600 or 1601, this play is Shakespeare's last romantic comedy. The comedies which followare much darker. Twelfth Night embodies many of the themes from his earlier comedies. For instance, he employed the device of having a woman fall in love with another woman disguised as a man. In some ways, Twelfth Night can be termed Shakespeare's apology to Phebe. Whereas Rosalind dominates As You Like it, we have many centers of interest in Twelfth Night. Orsino continues the theme of overly idealistic love we have seen in Orlando. The setting has a different feeling from Merchant of Venice and As You Like It--two plays in which Shakespeare clearly contrasts the world of

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