Shakespeare/Midsummer Night's Dream term paper 12526

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A Midsummer Night’s Dream is a classic fairy tale of lovers and betrayers.

This play has been called Shakespeare’s “happiest comedy” and it most

definitely is. It is filled with humor and non-stop action. There are many

different qualities in a ‘happy play’ that are clearly noticeable. For

example, love that is for the best makes all plays happy and humor causes the

audience to laugh and enjoy. Of course, every ‘happy play’ needs to have

some kind of happiness in it. A Midsummer Night’s Dream is Shakespeare’s

“happiest comedy” because it combines love, humor and joyfulness all

together. One of the reasons that A Midsummer Night’s Dream is labeled as

Shakespeare’s “happiest comedy” is because of the love that is present in

it. Hermia and Lysander are only teenagers but they are in love. They even put

their own lives at stake so they can be together: “So will I grow, so live, so

die, my lord,/ Ere I will yield my virgin patent up/ Unto his lordship, whose

unwished yoke/ my soul consents not to give sovereignty./” (Act: 1 Scene: 1)

Hermia tells Theseus that she will not give her virginity to Demetrius or to

anybody else. Lysander and Hermia’s love may be true but he does often

sweet-talk her so she could be just infatuated. Also, after he says that he will

never leave Hermia, he falls quickly in love with another woman when a love

potion is cast on him. Theseus and Hippolyta are also in love. They often argue

but their love is strong enough to keep them together. The only way reason they

are together is because Theseus kidnaps Hippolyta but everything works out and

they fall in love. Last but not least, the couple who is least expected to get

together finally does. Helena loves Demetrius so much that it seems she is also

infatuated. Demetrius does not love Helena until Oberon casts a spell on him.

This is what causes Demetrius and Helena to become lovers. Love makes this play

one of Shakespeare’s happiest comedies with the three couples and the love

they share. Along with love, humor takes a big part in this play. It is quite

humorous when Puck decides to play a trick on Bottom and place a real asshead on

his own. All of Bottom’s friends are running away from him and he has no idea

why. Another example is when Helena is telling Demetrius that she is his dog and

if he uses her, loses her and neglects her, she will still follow: “I am your

spaniel; and, Demetrius,/ The more you beat me, I will fawn on you:/ Use me but

as your spaniel, spurn me, strike me,/" (Act: 2 Scene: 1) This is funny

because it is unbelievable a girl can have such a low self-esteem. Some readers

may find this sickening and sad. Also, it is very funny when Oberon puts the

love potion on his wife, Titania’s eyes and she falls in love with the first

creature she sees who happens to be Bottom: “Thou art as wise as thou art

beautiful.” (83) This quote is hilarious because she thinks Bottom is

beautiful even though he is ugly with an asshead. However, others may find it

quite humiliating for Titania to fall in love with an ass. Humor is shown

throughout the play with Bottom and his asshead, Helena having such a low

self-esteem and Titania loving an ass. Besides love and humor, the joyfulness

makes the play one of the best. During Bottom and his friends play, all the

royal Athenians are laughing and having such a good time: “No die, but an ace,

for him; for he is but one./ Less than an ace, man; for he is dead; he is

nothing./ With the help of a surgeon he might yet recover,/ and prove an ass./

(Act: 5 Scene: 1) Demetrius, Lysander and Theseus are making fun of the

character ‘Pyramus’ and her death. Another happy part of the play is when

Lysander and Hermia finally get married. They also do not have to worry about

getting killed because the Duke of Athens sets up the whole wedding. The making

fun of Bottom’s play and Lysander and Hermia’s wedding are all joyful

moments in the play. A Midsummer Night’s Dream is Shakespeare’s “happiest

comedy” because it contains love, amusement and joyfulness all together. Love

is shown with all of the couples getting together and also, getting married.

Even though, a love potion brought a couple to love each other, their fate has

gotten them married. Shakespeare has a great imagination by putting an ass’

head on Bottom. This causes great entertainment and humor for the audience. With

the royal Athenians laughing and having a good time, this makes the play joyful

and content. A Midsummer Night’s Dream is definitely Shakespeare’s

“happiest comedy.”


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