The Role Of The Forest In Midsummer Night's Dream And As You Like It

1396 words - 6 pages

William Shakespeare often compares imagination and reality in his plays. He explores this comparison through the role and purpose of the forests in Midsummer Night's Dream and As You Like It. Midsummer Night's Dream focuses on imagination and escape, while As You like It focuses on reality and self discovery.

Imagination plays a key role in Midsummer Night's Dream. Puck, a fairy servant and friend of Oberon watches six Athenian men practice a play to be performed for Theseus wedding in the forest. Puck turns Nick Bottom's head into that of an ass. The other players see Bottom and run away screaming. He follows them saying, "Sometime a horse I'll be, sometime a hound, a hog, a headless bear, sometime a fire." "And neigh, and bark, and grunt, and roar, and burn, like horse, hound, hog, bear, fire, at every turn" (3.1.110-113). Nearing the end of the play Theseus and Hippolyta discuss what the four lovers experienced. Theseus states, "I never may believe these antique fables nor these fairy toys.'' The lunatic, the lover, and the poet are of imagination all compact" (5.1.2-3 and 5.1.7-8). At the end of the play the fairies arrive to bless the three couples. Puck tells us, "Now it is the time of night that the graves all gaping wide, every one lets forth his sprite, in the churchway paths to glide." "And we fairies, that do not run by the triple Hecate's team from the presence of the sun, following darkness like a dream, now are frolic. (5.1.396-404). Oberon and Titania sing, "So shall all the couples three ever true in loving be." "And the blots of Natures' hand shall not in their issue stand. Never mole, harelip, nor scar, not mark prodigious, such as are despised in nativity, shall upon their children be" (5.1.424-431).

Another important aspect of the play is escaping reality. Hermia is threatened with marrying the man she doesn't love, Demetrius, becoming a nun, or execution. She and Lysander, the man she loves, discuss what they should do and decide to go to Lysander's Aunts. Lysander tells Hermia, "There, gentle Hermia, may I marry thee." And to that place the sharp Athenian law cannot pursue us." "If thou lovest me then, steal forth thy father's house tomorrow night." "And in the wood, a league without the town---" (1.1.163-167). Meanwhile Oberon and Titania, king and queen of the fairies, are arguing over possession of a Indian boy. Titania will not give up the boy, in response Oberon has Puck find a magical flower, its nectar makes the person fall in love with the first thing they see. While waiting for Puck, Oberon watches Helena and Demetrius, sympathizing with Helena he has Puck use the nectar on Demetrius. Oberon anoints Titania's eyes, "What thou seest when thou dost wake, do it for thy true love take. Love and languish for his sake. Wake when some vile thing is near" (2.2.33-35, 40). Puck finds Lysander, who he mistakes as Demetrius and anoints his eyes. Lysander sees Helena and says to her, "And run through fire I will...

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

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

1626 words - 7 pages . Therefore, perhaps it is more precise to deem the love and the marriage as a side effect of the magical happenings on the island but not a direct manifestation. A Midsummer Night's Dream was a perfect forum for old William to have fun. He created a play in which there are four plots, all of them connected and even interwoven. There are the would-be actors from Athens; the fairies; the four lovers; and at last Hippolyta and Theseus. The

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

1667 words - 7 pages Supernatural Phenomena in The Tempest, Julius Caesar, and Midsummer Night's Dream        The Oxford English Dictionary defines "supernatural" as something "that is out of the ordinary course of nature; beyond, surpassing, or differing from what is natural."  In light of this definition, I shall be discussing the plays The Tempest, Julius Caesar, and A Midsummer Night's Dream through three successive pairings, drawing distinctions and

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

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 characters are left without guidance and, as such, are unable to control their own fates through the contemplation of their decisions. There are alternate and alien powers in control, of which the characters know little. In the forest of A Midsummer Night's Dream, Oberon and Titania, the King and Queen of fairies, rule as if by ruse. Oberon is able to change the emotions and love-interests of Lysander and Demetrius through the power of a

'A Midsummer Night's Dream' The interevention of the faries

681 words - 3 pages to be the reason of all this chaos. Within the play we have many different themes such as, the difficulties of love; magic; the nature of dreams; the relationships between fantasy and reality and between environment and experience.'A Midsummer Night's Dream' is a romantic comedy which ends in happiness unlike many of Shakespeare's plays. He shows us that even though love may be very confusing; add magic to the situation and it is madness. The

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

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

A Midsummer Night's Dream: The Dream Within a Dream

2470 words - 10 pages The Dream Within a Dream in William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream         Shakespeare anticipates the Freudian concept of the dream as egoistic wish-fulfillment through the chaotic and mimetic desires of his characters in "A Midsummer Night's Dream." The play also utilizes a secondary meaning of the word "dream" - musicality - by tapping into theater's potential for sensory enchantment. Through this artificial recreation of

What evidence is there of interaction between the world of Fairies and the mortal world in 'A Midsummer Night's Dream?'

612 words - 2 pages where they discuss the current meeting of their masters, Oberon, King of the Fairies and Titania, Queen of the fairies. The fairy immediately recognizes puck as Robin Goodfellow, puck responds with a positive answer telling of his omnipresence of lurking "in a gossip's bowl" (Act 2, scene 1, line 46) and drifting through the night looking for action. The action he mentions most likely has some involvement with the mortal world. An example of this

subplot in midsummer night's dream

1582 words - 6 pages the inquiry how she had routinely felt "under seige" and "held hostage" by paparazzi photographers outside her house. The author said that she had once hid her children with blankets inside their own home to protect them from the photographers outside. "There's a twist in the stomach as you wonder what do they want, what have they got? It feels incredibly threatening to have people watching you," she said. Following the birth of her son, Rowling

Comparing Love in Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream and Soyinka's Lion and the Jewel

973 words - 4 pages “Love is a familiar. Love is a devil. There is no evil angel but Love. (Love’s Labours Lost.1.2.)” This Shakespearean quote relays on the fact that love can lead to many misfortunes, presented as one of the aspects of love in both William Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, and Wole Soyinka’s “The Lion and the Jewel”. One aspect of love demonstrates its brilliant sides, and with it, brings affection, faith, and intimacy. However, it is

Similar Essays

The Forest Of Arden, In Shakespeare's 'as You Like It', Is An Idealised Pastoral Setting? Discuss

1193 words - 5 pages the false friendships and "painted pomp" of flattering courtiers. It fosters regeneration and reconciliation, as characters are changed by their experiences and discover truths about themselves and others. In respect of the kindly weather mentioned above, 'As You Like It' does not feature this, but rather the "churlish chiding of the winter's wind". However, even though the natural conditions are hard, the forest is still preferable to the "envious

The Forest In A Midsummer Night’s Dream’

1443 words - 6 pages then later on she tells Lysander where he can sleep to protect herself. In the play when we see the women show their power it mostly happens within the forest, which fits with the role of the forest which is as a green space. Therefore, the women on 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' do exercise power within the forest but they also show signs of power outside the forest in Athens. Works Cited http://www.webpages.uidaho.edu/~sflores

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 Romantic Obstacles Of Shakespeare In "Midsummer Night's Dream" And Soyinka's "Lion And The Jewel"

1032 words - 4 pages and female gender roles, and the obstacles which intervene with the true or ideal love. After all, "the course of true love never did run smooth." (Lysander, 1.1.134) To start, males play a very important role in love, as they are one of the sexes. In both plays, males are portrayed as the dominant gender due to their imperious behaviour towards the females. This is first seen in "A Midsummer Night's Dream" when Hermia's father Egeus declares