The Country Wife Summary And Analysis Of The Plot

1189 words - 5 pages

Summary and Analysis of the plot William Whycherly's The County Wife is a hilarious comedy about men and women in love and marriage. In the midst of a continual banter of sexual innuendo there lies, cynical commentary and misogonistic attitude's upon women, love and what is socially accepted."˜Mistresses are like books. If you pore upon them too much, they doze you and make you unfit for company, but only for a night and away, to taste the town better when a man returns' This quote from Horner represents the general negative attitude of men in this play towards women, by comparing them to inaminate objects."˜ Marrying to increase love is like gaming to become rich; alas, you only lose what little stock you had before' This is only one example of the love vs. lust debate common in many restoration plays.Many men never married but went after other men's wives's, this wasn't always possible due to jelous, dominating husbands like Mr Pinchwife . Horner therefore, devises a plan, he is crafty enough to know not to share it with his friends, as bragging about this trick (to make other men comfortable leaving their wives within his prescence as he is not a man ) would only cause a breakdown of his plan.Horner's famous line: "˜Wine gives you liberty, love takes it away,' He is saying that men lose their freedom by being attached to women. Ironically, Horner has lost his own "˜freedom' of being a whole man, for in trying to get close to women, he has soiled his reputation. Many of Horner's remarks about women are derogatory that women "˜ are like soldiers, made constant and loyal by good pay rather than oaths and convenants.' There is a little of irony intwined within the play, especially in Horner's hot-headed statements. At one point, Horner complains how all women use him, wheras in actual fact he is using them and their husbands, to him it is all a game.Meanwhile, Mr Pinchwife has just married and is extremely jelous of his new bride Margery. The cosmopolitan Mr Pinchwife married his homely, country wife so that to avoid all the infidelity, extravagance, and impertinence associated with the stereotypical city wife. Mr Pinchwife has to resort to keeping Margery as a prisoner in her own home. Mr Pinchwife tries to justify his behaviour by stories of theatregoers who lust desirously at young women, yet he only intrigue's Margery even more. Hoping to quence her curiosity, he takes Margery out into town dressed as a boy, however they bump into Horner who has been said to love Margery since he first saw her, Mr Pinchwife know's of his feelings. Horner figures out that Margery is not a boy but he never lets on, but perceeds to shame Mr Pinchwife. Mrs Pinchwife realises this is the man who claims to love her and falls in love with him also.While Mr Pinchwife is desperately trying to keep from being cuckolded, he is all too ready to marry his sister Alithea to Mr Sparkish the play's hilarious fop. Unlike Mr Pinchwife, Mr Sparkish...

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