Shakespeare's Scenes:A Glimpse Into The Life Of An Artist As Exemplified In <A Midsummer Night's Dream> And <The Merchant Of Venice>. By Andrew Scott

2381 words - 10 pages

Shakespeare's Scenes:A Glimpse into the Life of an ArtistIf one is to uncover a common thread between art and life, it can only be that of impermanence. The impact of constant change becomes as compelling as it is irreversible, and, thus, burrows itself deep within the mind and soul of the artist. One, then, cannot fully understand the art without, first, understanding the artist. Such is the case if one is to truly comprehend Shakespearean themes.Though precious little is certain as to the daily idiosyncrasies and inner-workings of the life of William Shakespeare (1564-1614), a great deal is known as to the whole of the playwright's life, comprised, namely, in a single timeline of recorded events. Various methods of documentation, such as marriage and birth certificates, court summonses, land deeds, and other scholarly accepted items of record speak on the poet's behalf. Shakespeare's lineage, baptism, marriage, fostering of children, and death, for example, are all dutifully recorded in the parish registers and histories of the quaint, English village of Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire. Additionally, what is known of 1ate-16th and early-17th century English life aids in the reconstruction of the playwright's experiences. What lies between the infant Shakespeare's baptism in late April of 1564 and the renowned poet and playwright's death in 1614 allows one a glimpse into the inner-workings of one of the most prevalent Shakespearean themes, that of the divergences and contrasts of separate worlds.William Shakespeare was no stranger to separate and divergent worlds. There is sufficient documentation to conclude that, during the mid- to late-1580's, Shakespeare left behind both his home and family to find an alternate life in the city. Though some argue that young William had found himself in a bit of disrepute with a local landholder and was forced to relocate, others disagree: " seems more natural to suppose that he left his native village as a boy to-day leaves a remote country town and goes to the city to seek his fortune" (Thurber 134). Regardless of the reasoning behind the move, the significance of the relocation upon Shakespearean drama remains unchanged: " 1592 he was in London as an actor and apparently already well known as a playwright" (Abrams 1026).William Shakespeare was born into an up-and-coming middle-class family. Shakespeare's father, John, is described as "relatively comfortable...[though] not overly wealthy" (Bartram 2). At the time of William Shakespeare's birth, John Shakespeare was "one of the most prominent men in Stratford, decidedly well-to-do, respected and trusted by all" (Thurber 129). What John Shakespeare may have lacked in monetary wealth, however, was made up by his power as a local, political figurehead, "who held, successively, various local offices, closing with those of Mayor and Head-Alderman" of Stratford (Hudson 37). And, thus, Shakespeare's life as a youngster would have been one of privilege,...

Find Another Essay On Shakespeare's Scenes:A Glimpse into the Life of an Artist as exemplified in <A Midsummer Night's Dream> and <The Merchant of Venice>. By Andrew Scott

Central Theme of Love in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream

696 words - 3 pages Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream central theme of love A common theme in literature is love. Love can take hold in an instant and can make you do things you never would have done otherwise. Love appears in several different ways in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Hermia and Lysander show true love, while Helena demonstrates unrequited love. Titania and Bottom presents us with magic love. In the play, love is also the cause of

The difference in presentation of love theme in Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet" and "A Midsummer Night's Dream"

1138 words - 5 pages love is magically induced with a drug.However there is an example of true love in this play. Hermia and Lysander's. Their love is pure and simple. They have no reason to be in love with each other, but yet have hopelessly fallen so. Through all of these characters and their situations, Lysander said it best:"The course of love never did run smooth." (1.1.136)Although love does not run smooth, Shakespeare's "Midsummer Night's Dream" did. The reader

The Behaviour of Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream

1020 words - 4 pages The Behaviour of Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' is a play where the line between dream and reality disappears. It's about how love is magical. The play was written around 1598 and would have been preformed in the Globe Theatre. It is a comedy, because like almost all of Shakespeare's comedies it ends in marriage. In the play we get introduced to a character named Puck. He is a fairy and a

The Role of the Forest in Midsummer Night's Dream and As You Like It

1396 words - 6 pages be manipulated. The purpose of As You Like It is that life is full of hardships and self discovery. In the forest people work as sheep herders, farmers, and hunters as their way of life. To these people the court is not real life. Without the constraints of the court a person can take time to contemplate life, to discover yourself. It is chance for self discovery. Conclusion In William Shakespeare's two plays, Midsummer Night's Dream and As

'Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice

967 words - 4 pages 'Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice is still relevant today because it deals with issues which still affect us. Show how two of those issues are discussed in the play.'Throughout the play a distinction is made between how things appear on the outside and how they are in reality, or on the inside. The issue of appearance versus reality is demonstrated in varied ways, mainly by the use of real-life situations. The first representation of this is

The Theme of True Love in A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare

1060 words - 4 pages The Theme of True Love in A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare The overriding theme of the play "A Midsummer Night's Dream" by William Shakespeare deals with the nature of love. Though true love seems to be held up as an ideal, false love is mostly what we are shown. Underneath his frantic comedy, Shakespeare seems to be asking the questions all lovers ask in the midst of their confusion: How do we know when love is real? How

Illusion and Fairies in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream

1590 words - 6 pages Illusion and Fairies in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream The main theme of love in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream is explored by four young lovers, who, for the sake of their passions, quit the civilized and rational city of Athens, and its laws, and venture into the forest, there to follow the desires of their hearts - or libidos as the case may be. In this wild and unknown wilderness, with the heat and emotion commonly

A Comparison of Romantic Love in A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Tempest, and Twelfth Night

1626 words - 7 pages : A Casebook. Ed. D.J. Palmer. London: Macmillan & Co. Ltd., 1968. 225. Hillman, Richard  The Tempest as Romance and Anti-Romance Shakespeare Quarterly. 34 (1983), 426-432. Palmer, D.J. Shakespeare's Later Comedies: An Anthology of Modern Criticism. Harmondsworth, Penguin, 1971. Potter, Lois. Twelfth Night: Text & Performance. London: Macmillan, 1985. Schanzer, Ernest.  "_A Midsummer-Night's Dream."  26-31 in Kenneth Muir, ed. Shakespeare: The Comedies: A Collection of Critical Essays.  Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, 1965. Shakespeare, William. The Norton Shakespeare. Edited Stephen Greenblatt et al. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1997.  

Portia and Bassanio in William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice

1150 words - 5 pages Portia and Bassanio in William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice “The Merchant of Venice” is a Shakespearean play based on the themes of friendship, racial prejudice, deceptive appearances and love, of which the most romantic is the love between Portia and Bassanio. In contrast, the other two couples - Lorenzo and Jessica, Gratiano and Nerissa – exhibit playful or down-to-earth love. Portia is as faultless as

Justice and Prosperity in Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice

1562 words - 6 pages justice in The Merchant of Venice as an instrument for vengeance. Shylock demands his bond with no other justification than a resentful hatred for Antonio. "If you deny me," he tells the Duke, "fie upon your law: / There is no force in the decrees of Venice" (IV.i.102–103). He seems convinced that the conditions of his agreement are guaranteed under Venetian law, and that rejecting his right to reclaim his losses would be a denial of justice. To

A Comparison of the Supernatural in Tempest, Julius Caesar, and Midsummer Night's Dream

1667 words - 7 pages Prospero/Ariel/Caliban. A Midsummer Night's Dream came out roughly 1594-5, The Tempest around 1611-12, some seventeen years later. The development of Shakespeare's imagination, as well as his powers as a playwright and poet, are certainly evident in The Tempest: The language is richer and more convoluted, the tone darker, more brooding, as are the characters (a feature characteristic of Shakespeare's Jacobean phase), and the whole message of revenge

Similar Essays

Female Relationships In Shakespeare's Taming Of The Shrew And A Midsummer Night's Dream

1711 words - 7 pages Female Relationships in Shakespeare's Taming of the Shrew and A Midsummer Night's Dream Often in literature, parallels are used to accentuate certain things. William Shakespeare utilizes this tool in both The Taming of the Shrew and A Midsummer Night's Dream. In both of these comedic plays, there is a set of women who are at odds with each other. These relationships can be compared and contrasted in different aspects. In Shakespeare's

An Explication Of William Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream"

1683 words - 7 pages play itself, "A Midsummer Night's Dream" holds the very word. Based on that idea, audience members can easily draw their own interpretations of the play. Audience members can choose to believe that Shakespeare's play is going to be based on mere fantasies or will make light of them. In fact, the characters in the play drift in and out a real and fantasy world. The title itself sets an overall mood before the audience can dig into the actual

Illusion Of Love In Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream

1510 words - 6 pages Illusion of Love in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream The play A Midsummer Night's Dream is centered around themes that are seemingly apparent and clear: those of true love, false love, love's blindness and the inconstancy of love. However, this pattern of the themes of love dissipate to reveal that these themes are only apparent to the reader who wants them to exist. We want Lysander and Hermia to be in love; we want Demetrius to

The Supernatural In William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream

2368 words - 9 pages The Supernatural in William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream Consider the presentation of the supernatural in "A Midsummer Night's dream". In what way does it reveal Shakespeare's moral and philosophical concerns? How does Shakespeare's stagecraft (setting, Characterisation, language, verse form etc) facilitate the consideration of his concerns? and how do we as a modern audience respond to the play as a piece of