To Hotspur history is a fixed and final reality to which he is irrevocably committed. This earth that bears thee dead Bears not alive so stout a gentleman. Nought but trickery and lies, my lords; I would have you look to it! I Burckhardt has argued that Falstaff rises from death as a symbol of disorder, a character who "outgrew his preassigned measure and function" as foil to Hotspur.
If I speak less than truth, if I bate it so much as a tittle, then am I. Claudio remains polite and nearly silent even though he is upset, telling Benedick of Don Pedro and Hero: This is perhaps why these to plays share some differences as well as similarities — whilst the motives of Iago and Don John are similar, a lot of the deception that occurs in Much Ado About Nothing is not for malicious purposes and thus this is where Othello and Much Ado About Nothing differs.
Reasons you shall have! As a result he is endowed with the detachment essential to humor. It is true that Falstaff surrenders his right, or license, to stand outside the fiction and mock its claims to truth.
That is appropriate too, because as a future king Hal knows very well that his business is to shape history, not to be shaped by it. Claudio obviously regards Benedick highly as he asks for his opinion of Hero when he first sees her.
Claudio is portrayed as quite a serious character, whereas on the other hand, his friend Benedick is loud and witty. The other benevolent plot is also masterminded byby don pedro and involves the deception of a wider range of characters — most importantly Benedick and Beatrice.
They do however, in the end get married due to other events; Shakespeare may have done this to show the gullible side of Claudio, that he believes whatever he is told.
Would he not direct the same angry anger at the woman as Claudio does at Hero? Lord, Lord, how this theater is given to lying! There are various other family relationships shown throughout the play, an obvious one being that of Leonato and his daughter Hero.
Although to love, honour and obey is the wedding vow where we pledge to honour and cherish one another in good times and in bad times, it seems without doubt that honouring thy partner is one of the first vows to be disregarded and this is wrong because without honour how can we love?
This seems to be Iago subtly mocking Othello status as a soldier and pointing out how unlike a soldier he really is. The bond is sealed as Falstaff hoists and so acknowledges the "deadness" of?
To die is to be a counterfeit, for he is but the counterfeit of a man who hath not the life of a man. How if he should counterfeit too and rise?
However, he is not yet finished. It is curious that precisely at this point, when he has proved himself a true prince among a field of counterfeit kings, Hal should again have recourse to the lie.
Nay, but I suppose you will have reasons of me. If for much of this scene theater has obscured our view of dramatic life, it now dissolves into transparency again, seemingly disappearing but in fact becoming a lens through which we witness the mimesis of history.
Don Johns ploy makes way for yet another deception proposed by the friar which is vital to the non-tragic finale of the play.
Whether believed or not, his lie calls forth another from Hal: Insincerity was endemic, and real feelings must never subvert sham, false ones. We cannot be simultaneously conscious of actor and character, of theater and depicted life, of art and nature. If I be doubted, if the door of belief is to be shut on old Jack, then where, pray, is your poor truth to be found?
Only in a very curious sense, I suppose, could we say that the character Hal "knows" that Falstaff is not dead and so speaks to him on his own theatrical level while on the other hand, knowing that Percy is not "really" dead either, he nevertheless accepts the Percy mode of illusion and addresses him realistically.
Or, to put a kinder construction on it, perhaps we should say that the price is a liberalizing of the imagination, a setting aside of the standards of fact and reason that give rise to the notions of true and false in real life. Throughout the play they hide their real feelings for eachother behind humorous joking, poking fun at eachother with their wit.
IV When Falstaff is lured back into the historical fiction it may appear that theatrical drama is sacrificed to mimetic drama.
Falstaff then enters and dances fiercely about the far fringes of the fray crying "Well said, Hal! Not the historical Kempe, of course, but Kempe as the generic actor. But the reverse is quite as true, that his wittiness and especially his burlesque humor are made possible by the other characters who are playing their roles straight—Hotspur, Henry IV, Hal at times, Mistress Quickly, the Lord Chief Justice, Justice Shallow, etc.
Hal, however, has more latitude, which is to say a more flexible consciousness and a less radical devotion to honor. Oh what authority and show of truth can cunning sin cover itself withal! And a little later in the scene Hal proves as ready to turn histrionic and play royal as Falstaff, though with his concluding "I do, I will" he is disposed to convert the play-acting from idle entertainment into a rehearsal of future history.
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