Malvolio And The Way He Is Treated In William Shakespeare's The Twelfth Night

1820 words - 7 pages

Malvolio and the Way he is Treated in William Shakespeare's The Twelfth Night

Malvolio is an extremely complicated and difficult character to study
because of his mixed, complex personality. At times in the play he
seems very reliable and loyal but sometimes he seems foolish and weak,
and in many scenes in the play the audience are encouraged to laugh at
him, his actions or his words. He is not portrayed as a lovable
character, which makes the play funnier. Also, the way that Malvolio
seems humourless actually makes him humorous. Just Malvolio's name can
give you some idea of his personality, it means in Latin

Malvolio's first appearance is in Act I Scene 5. His humourless
character can be seen straight away in this scene because he is not
amused by Feste's attempts to cheer up a saddened Olivia. He talks
about Feste in a rude way, as if he is higher than the fool:

"I marvel your lady takes delight in such a

barren rascal. I saw him put down the other day

with an ordinary fool, that has no more brain than a

stone. Look you now, he's out of his guard already!"(Lines 81-84)

Olivia is not happy with this attempt to be unkind and offensive to
Feste and is quick to respond in Feste's defense:

"O you are sick of self-love, Malvolio and taste with

a distempered appetite." (Lines 89-90)

Later on in the scene Malvolio tells Olivia that Viola/Cesario wishes
to see her. He tries to make Viola/Cesario sound worse than what "he"
actually is because Malvolio wants to keep "him" away from Olivia. His
attempts fail and eventually Olivia talks with Viola/Cesario.

When Viola/Cesario leaves, Malvolio is instructed by Olivia to give
"him" a ring. Malvolio is very obedient and agrees to do this with no
trouble. So, from being rude and offensive earlier on in the scene to
Feste, he is now obedient and loyal. Malvolio could, at this point, be
called two-faced. His personality changes depending on whom he is
interacting with.

Act II Scene 2 consists of a conversation between Malvolio and
Viola/Cesario. Malvolio seems very proud and pleased to be telling
Viola/Cesario that Olivia does not want him to bring messages from
Orsino any more. Of course he does not realise that the implications
of this message are actually the complete opposite! He says:

"And one thing more, that you never be so hardy to

come again in his affairs, unless it be to report your

lord's taking of this." (Lines 8-10)

Malvolio is then rude and selfish to Viola/Cesario because he
obviously feels that he is more important than him. Instead of handing
Viola/Cesario the ring, he throws it onto the floor.

In the next scene, Act II Scene 3 Sir Toby and Sir Andrew are
drinking, they persuade Feste to sing for them but Maria is wary and
warns them of the trouble they could be in....

Find Another Essay On Malvolio and the Way he is Treated in William Shakespeare's The Twelfth Night

The Use of Deception in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

691 words - 3 pages , 87-88). Feste eventually has pity for the mistreated servant and sets him free.       Deception pervades William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night. One example involves Viola dressing up as a man. A second example involves the conspiracy of Maria, Sir Toby, Sir Andrew, and Fabian to make a fool of Olivia's servant Malvolio. The third example involves tormenting Malvolio purely for enjoyment. Deception is used in the play to work into good situations, avoid difficult situations, and to play abusive yet humorous jokes on other characters in the play. Works Cited Shakespeare, William. Twelfth Night. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, Inc., 1968.

William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night Essay

699 words - 3 pages William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night In 'Twelfth Night' Olivia's trusted steward Malvolio, like Sir Andrew, is the 'butt of comedy'. His very name suggests 'ill-will', which echoes his role in the play. Malvolio is an egotistical, "overweening rogue", who is a straight laced, puritanical, social climbing rebuker of others for their anti-social and often sinful behaviour, or as he put it, "misdemeanours". Malvolio's

William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

1373 words - 5 pages William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night The final act is a simple scene in this romantic Shakesperian comedy. It brings together all the threads of the storyline the plots, mistakes and confusions. It shows Cesario (Viola) being accused of deception, lies and acts of violence by a number of others including Orsino, Olivia, Sir Andrew Aguecheek and Antonio. The scene is set outside Olivia's house. It begins with Feste (the

The Themes of Deception and Self-Deceit in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

1773 words - 7 pages The Themes of Deception and Self-Deceit in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night Works Cited Missing The comical play, Twelfth night, which was written by Shakespeare, is a classic example of seventeenth century humour, wit, deception and self-deceit. In the play we see how twin Viola and Sebastian are separated, and they both

William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

5132 words - 21 pages William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night In Act 1, scenes 1-3, there are many ways to which these scenes provide an effective opening to the play. Individually, these scenes each serve a different aspect, which contributes to an effective opening. In Act 1, scene 1, Orsino is introduced into the picture, with his whining and pining towards this love for Olivia, with much exaggeration, due to the excessive use of imagery, and

Deception in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

813 words - 3 pages Deception in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night In William Shakespeare's comedic play, Twelfth Night, a recurring theme is deception. The characters in the play used deception for a variety of purposes. Viola's use of deception involves her disguising herself as a man in order to obtain a job with the Duke of Illyria, Orsino. On the other hand, Maria, Olivia's servant, writes a letter to Malvolio in Olivia's handwriting to make Malvolio

Misperception and Deception in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

2198 words - 9 pages perfect example of the ties between humor, irony, misperception and deception and how intricately the characters are woven into the resulting confusion. It also demonstrates how Viola is at the centre of all misperception and deception. Viola directly effects another character through misperception and deception in Twelfth Night, who is Orsino. He is not only deceived by Viola's disguise, though he acknowledges her likeness to a woman

Love Triangle in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

1095 words - 4 pages Love Triangle in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night “O, what a deal of scorn looks beautiful in the contempt and anger of his lip! A murd’rous guilt shows not itself more soon than love that would seem hid: love’s night is noon. – Cesario, by the roses of the spring, by maidhood, honor, truth, and every thing, I love thee so, that maugre all thy pride, nor wit nor reason can my passion hide. Do not extort thy reasons from this clause

Letter sent by Sir Toby to a friend in Shakespeare's 'Twelfth Night', after the trick has been played on Malvolio but before the effects have been seen

632 words - 3 pages Malvolioo.Malvolio. The man is a tyrant. No sense of fun, no sense of humour, no wit, manners or honesty but to interrupt every good time we three fooleries can snatch for ourselves. A puritan through to the bone, he makes one want to beat him like a dog. In fact, but for his position in my dear cousin's house and my own habit of lodging there I would take to him like a mad animal out of its cage. But enough said - let move on to this startling

Love and Relationships in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

1320 words - 5 pages William Shakespeare's Twelfth NightOne of the first lines in the play Twelfth Night reveals the main theme of the play. Curio asks, "Will you go hunt, my lord?" And Duke Orsino replies, "Why, so I do, the noblest that I have. O, when mine eyes did see Olivia first, methought she purged the air of pestilence; that instant was I turned into a hart, and my desires, like fell and cruel hounds, e'er since pursue me." The Twelfth Night is all about

Twelfth Night: Malvolio iIs Miss-understood

1749 words - 7 pages first piece of evidence that Malvolio gives us, is when he first appears in the play during which he insults Feste “I marvel your ladyship takes delight in such a barren rascal” in doing so, we realise that Malvolio thinks of himself as a superior person; anyone lower than him is treated in a harsh and cruel way, only because of his self belief of superiority. Olivia seems to pick up on Malvolio as she replies, “Oh you are sick of self love, Malvolio

Similar Essays

Malvolio In William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

684 words - 3 pages Malvolio in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night The problem involving Malvolio in Twelfth Night has been known for a long time but still very difficult. The gist of it is this. A lot of modern readers or spectators feel that the way in which Malvolio is treated is extremely bad. We expect him to become the centre of humour; we know that in the business of comedy, a very puritanical and rather joyless figure is likely

Twelfth Night, By William Shakespeare How Do Sir Toby And Malvolio Represent Two Opposing Principles In The Play 'twelfth Night'?

2601 words - 10 pages Sir Toby, Feste and Sir Andrew. It is, however, the culmination to the days of merrymaking around Christmas and it therefore represents the end of such fun. Twelfth Night is the last day of celebration and indulgence before a normal life with winter darkness and cold regulations set in, much to the delight of a fun-despising character like Malvolio. This wistful feeling of the festive end is heightened further since Shakespeare's play of

The Humor In William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

2292 words - 9 pages The Humor in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night Comedy should entertain a general audience. It is usually a dramatic work that is light, and often satirical in tone. Horace Walpole once said that "life is like a comedy to those who think, and a tragedy to those who feel." This can be said to be true in as we tend to laugh at comic characters, particularly comic double acts, but "feel" with tragic heroes. The

Viola In William Shakespeare's The Twelfth Night

909 words - 4 pages Viola in William Shakespeare's The Twelfth Night Viola as a main character is the most deceitful; she tricks everybody into believing she's a man, but as well as being most deceitful she is also the most honest and sincere. So what are her attractive qualities? Why does she appeal to us as an audience? In this essay I will be looking at Viola and her appealing qualities as well as the way in which I believe she