This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

What Is Love? Essay

1313 words - 6 pages

One of the predominant themes in William Shakespeare’s play Twelfth Night is love. The notion of love is important to the plot as many of the characters are driven by love. There are multiple forms of love depicted throughout the play; each character represents a different type of love. Viola displays a patient, sincere, and enduring love for Orsion as well as a deep familial love for her brother. Sebastian and Antonio share a special bond which could be classified as brotherly love. These two bonds can be seen as the most real forms of love depicted in Twelfth Night. Orsino and Olivia have both become possessed by a deep and sudden romantic love. Also, unrequited love can be seen by Olivia ...view middle of the document...

Viola is yearning to be reunited with her brother, “for saying so, there's gold” (1.2). The previous quotation displays that there is a ray of hope that Viola may be reconnected with her brother. Sebastian is rescued by Antonio and they form a deep brotherly friendship. At several points throughout the play, the reader notices that Antonio cares immensely for Sebastian. When Sebastian goes to Illyria Antonio risk his life and accompanies Sebastian on his journey.
Orsino and Olivia are controlled by illusory love. For Orsino, love is seen as an addiction as he cannot think of anything else. He is completely fixated on being in love, “if music be the food of love, play on/give me excess of it, that, surfeiting” (1.1). Orsino cannot rid himself of his desire for Olivia. He believes that an excess of music will cure his obsession with love. However, music is the fuel of love and Orsino takes pleasure in over-indulging. He is possessed by his love for love. Although Orsino believes to have fallen for Olivia, he does not directly profess his love to her and chooses to send a messenger to deliver his messages. Orsino does not show any true interest in Olivia thus suggesting that his love for her is imagined. Once Violas identity has been revealed, she confesses her love to Orsino, who quickly dismisses his infatuation with Olivia and asks for Violas hand in marriage. This example illustrates how Orsino’s behaviours make the reader question the reality of love within the play. Olivia’s actions are controlled by love; she is overtaken by her attraction to Cesario (i.e., Viola). Love is represented as an illness in which Orsino and Olivia have caught. Additionally, Shakespeare uses exaggerated language to enhance the effect of the characters being love-sick. For instance, Cesario tells Olivia that Orsino loves her “[w]ith adorations, fertile tears/with groans that thunder love, with sighs of fire (1.5). The language used in the play embodies the intensity and power that love has over Olivia and Orsino.
Unrequited love is another important type of love portrayed in Twelfth Night. Not only are Orsino and Olivia being controlled by love, there lovers do not love them back. False love and unreturned love usually co-exist. Viola fits into the category of unrequited love. However, she does not pursue or become infatuated by her emotions nor is it illusory love. Viola’s love differs from that of Orsino and Olivia. Throughout the play, Viola does not lose sight of reality and feels at fault for loving Orsino, “my master loves her dearly/and I, poor monster, fond as much on him/and she, mistaken, seems to dote on me” (2.2). She acknowledges that her love for Orsino is wrong as he believes her to be a man. Furthermore, the woman that Orsino desires has fallen for...

Find Another Essay On What Is Love?

What is Love? Essay

647 words - 3 pages Love, Love, Love. We all think about it, dream about it, sing about it, and even lose sleep worrying about it, but why? Love is such a small word paired with a vital meaning. It’s universal, easy to spell, difficult to define, but impossible to live without. When we don’t have it, we search for it, when we find it, we don’t know what to do with it, when we have it, we fear losing it. Love is the constant source of happiness and sorrow. I am

What Is Love? Essay

818 words - 3 pages What is Love? Religion, Politics, Racism…. All controversial topics within our world, however there is no topic such as the meaning of 'Love'. There are so many versions of 'What Love Exactly Is', so coming to a simple definition would seem almost impossible to most people. 'Love' has been the basis of most things in our society, and has been shown in many mediums. How can a small world mean so many different things? The simplest

What is True Love?

766 words - 4 pages important not to confuse the first impression someone gets from the person with an accurate description of who they truly are. This is proven by Aaron Ben-Zeév who is considered to be one of the worlds leading experts in the study of emotions he proves this when he claims,” In love at first sight, the high value accorded to the other’s external appearance is projected onto her internal characteristics”(Ben-Zeév). Human imagination overrides what

What is love?

818 words - 3 pages In your own words, describe what it means to you; what it includes, or doesn't include, etc.We humans are emotional beings. Our emotions are generally divided into two categories: positive and negative. Love is an outstanding type of positive emotion, and, in its extreme form, there is true love.If you look up the word love in The American Heritage Dictionary, you'll find quite a few definitions about love: "A deep, tender, ineffable feeling of

What Is Love?

1208 words - 5 pages Love: What is it? Love, what is it? To many people love means many things. To others, to love is to place their happiness in one another. Others love can be how they feel about that special someone. I'm not talking about the fatherly love or that motherly love. I'm talking about the love that you feel towards someone. That special someone that you could possibly spend the rest of your life with. Webster defines love as a strong feeling of

What is Love?

1424 words - 6 pages . I can't help but to assume that I have found 'Genuine Love' because of an overwhelming feeling of vivacious content upon finding a seemingly perfect union. Peck's views on love in this respect differ from what my thoughts have conjured up as such. And I can only infer that the words of a reputable author and doctor are more legitimate than mine. It is here that I must stop to apologize to you, Louis, for making this part of the paper far too

What is love? Is It Real?

1145 words - 5 pages What is love? That question instantly brings to mind several different songs and books. We live in a culture where love and inadvertently sex is in almost everything. The entertainment culture portrays love as being all about sex and infatuation. They also make love look like it is about what another person can give you, and not what you can mutually give to one another. Is that what love is actually about? Webster’s Dictionary describes love as

What is the Definition of True Love?

1785 words - 7 pages chemical love, and love in marriage will show what the meaning of true love is today. When looking at the differences of how women and men think about love, a very different point is made. In Steve Harvey’s book Act Like A Lady Think Like A Man, he discusses a woman’s love for her man, “Nothing … can compare with a woman’s love”(19). “A woman’s love it is kind and compassionate, patient and nurturing, generous and sweet and unconditional”(19). If

I want to know what love is

1282 words - 6 pages what one would call true love. At the beginning of the Novel Bendrix is unsure about how to express his love so jealousy and obsession are what he shows. As the events in the book occur his love begins to slowly develop into a more healthy version of love. This more evolved version of love that Bendrix experiences becomes tangible when he chases Sarah into the church. “The slowly growing pain in my upper arm where her weight lay was the greatest

Letters to Juliet: What is Love?

849 words - 4 pages There are many mysteries in life; one of many happens to be love. Love is such an easy thing to grasp, but to hold and truly understand it will dumbfound philosophers for a millennia and a millennia more to come. To understand such a thing is like asking; why does the sun set? Why do the ones we say we “love” leave us? To give an answer in a matter of seconds would almost certainly be wrong. Ask your self, what is love? A good example is in

What Is Love? Baby Don't Hurt me

2256 words - 10 pages whether they have been obedient or disobedient.” (Dostoyevsky) To control what kind of individuals can love is a rejection of the power of relationships. The destructive power of the Grand Inquisitor’s love for the collective good of humanity denies basic social freedoms. Lorde could never sympathize with the cardinal’s complaints because of the lack of faith in humanity that denies the basic ability to love one another freely. Whereas the

Similar Essays

What Is Love? Essay

642 words - 3 pages What is Love? Love, love, love, we hear it every day, every where , it is used so often that we don’t really give it a thought. The question that needs to be answered is what really is love? Was love created so that hate can be suppressed? Is love something that both man and woman hope for when their world comes crashing down on them? Does love help relief pain and suffering felt by victims of natural disasters? Aphrodite, Venus, Cupid, and

What Is Love Essay

988 words - 4 pages The word love has been around since the beginning of time and in this day in age it still has the same meaning as it has always had. However, now days there are more ways in which our culture uses the word love. If one was to say "I love you" or "I love it", is he saying that because he truly means it or is he simply saying that because that is what he thinks is the right thing to say? Love is the deepest, most meaningful word one can say about

What Is Love? Essay

1677 words - 7 pages What is Love? Romantic Love Is love chemical? Love can't be just pheromones, surely body chemistry changes. Although, perhaps that is why people break up after a while. Maybe they were attracted to each other at one point, but then the pheromones they were giving off change and the other person is no longer attracted to them. What is attraction based on? What attracts one person to another? People have said they have fallen in

What Is Love? Essay

1145 words - 5 pages Without love what would life be like? Think about it, millions of people say, "I love you." We celebrate love on Valentine's Day, but what is love? Some people say that in order to be in love with someone you have to have had sex with that person. Or that you can't be in love with the same sex. Someone that you're in love with might ask you to do something that you don't want to do in order to prove your love. When you love another person, do