“Much Ado About Nothing” by William Shakespeare Essay Sample
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Introduction of TOPIC
The quotation in the title is spoken by Claudio in “Much Ado About Nothing” by William Shakespeare. He is apologising to Leonato because he has made a mistake by accusing Hero of infidelity. in Elizabethan times, this would have bought dishonour on the family. Claudio is a young, brave soldier who is inexperienced in love. He has fallen in love with Hero who is to be his future wife. This issue is debatable because although Claudio is the romantic hero, he makes some very serious mistakes.
Claudio is a convention romantic hero from the genre of romantic comedies. Most romantic comedies include love at first sight with villians or rivals trying to stop that happening. Also there is usaully a happy ending which normally ends in a wedding.
“And the conclusion is, she shall be thine”. The word conclusion suggests that Don Pedro anticipates the ending to be happy.
Claudio is praised by the messenger even before he has entered the stage, his reputation amongst the other soldiers is good because he has done well in battle and he has battled bravely.
“Much deserved on his part and equally remembered by Don Pedro. He hath borne himself beyond the promises of his age, doing in the figure of a lamb the feats of a lion”.
This shows that Claudio has done much more than anyone expected him to do shakespeare is also using a metaphor to describe Claudio.
Claudio appears to be a geniune man, falling in love with Hero at first sight and tells Benedick About his love for Hero. Since the first time he sees her he doesnt want to spend another minute away from her.
“Can the world by such a jewel”.
Shakespeare uses a rhetorical question to make it more romantic and he also uses a metaphorto compare her to a jewel.
Claudio asks Leonato if he has a son as it was important to marry someone of equal status. In todays society it would be worrying to ask that question as you could marry someone of different status and if you asked that question they would think that you would only want it for the money.
“Hath Leonato any son, my lord!”
In Elizabethan times it was important to ask this because it was a financal transaction, as a romantic union.
Claudio and Hero stay in love through out the play being constant, and sincere whereas other people’s love is irrational and changable. Beatrice and Benedick are a good example as their love is unpredictable, irrational and changeable but Claudio and Hero love each other all the way through the play.
“But, on my honour, she was charged with nothing but what was true and very full of proof”.
This quote shoes that Claudio knows Hero has done nothing wrong but it had a lot of proof to go with it.
Claudio is young and inexperienced in love and he is very trusting so he also can be lead the wrong way . Don John must be very trusting as even Don Pedro believes him.
“The prince woos for himself, friendship is constant in all other things save in the office and affairs of love.”
This quote shows that Claudio trusts Don Pedro in everything execpt women and Don John is very convincing
Benedick and Leonato also believe Don John as he can be very persausiveand so Claudio cannot be blamed. Don John also shows Claudio Don Pedro wooing Hero for himself and also when she is at the window but he gets both of these situations wrong and Hero is very angry and upset.
“Confirmed, confirmed would the two prices lie and Claudio lie.”
This quote shows that they are making a point that they saw Hero in the window with another man but they are mistaken as Don John tricked them and they all believed him.
Claudio doesn’t disgrace Hero out of spite as he saw her being wooed by someone
Now Claudio knows that Hero is dead, he attends a mourning ritual. He shows genuine remorse of her death.
“Done to death by slanderous tongues”.
This quote is said by Claudio when he is at the service. This quote shows us that, now she has died, it was all because of people using their tongues and saying things that were not actually true.
Claudio in act 5, scene 1 believes he is not in the wrong and thinks that he is right as he saw Hero being wooed with his own eyes. Claudio continually defends his honour even after he has found out that she has died.
This rhetorical question shows that Claudio believes that he is not in the wrong and his judgements have been right.
Claudio also gains the audience sympathy because he is set up by the friar. He is also deceived.
“And let my counsei sway you in the case”.
The audience and most of the characters know Hero isn’t dead this is called dramatic irony.
However, the evidence is debateable. some critics argue that his actions are unjustified and that he acts cruelly andtherefore does not deserve Hero as a bride.
Claudio is lacking in manliness and independence of thought. He has no experience in love and he is very independent. Claudio has been in the war for many years and this is also his first experience of love so he doesn’t know what to do or who to believe.
“My lord lack-beard”.
This shows that Claudio is very yound and inexperienced in love as he doesn’t have a beard. Also shakespeare uses alliteration and the tone is very aggresive towards Claudio and it is sarcastic.
Claudio is very self-absorbed and he is wrapped up in his own feelings, we can show this as he dominates the conversation in act 1. However when he tries to woo Hero he doesn’t have the conidence to do it himself.
“I will assume thy part in some disguise, and tell fair Hero i am Claudio”.
This quote is said by Don Pedro. Claudio and Don Pedro were talking. Claudio decides Don Pedro would be better at wooing Hero.
During the ball scene Don Pedro woos Hero on the behalf of Claudio but Don John tells Claudio that he is doing it for himself. He immediatly believes Don John and acts very immature and he gets jealous very quickly.
“Farewell therefore Hero”.
He immediately dimisses Hero and it also shows that he can’t really love her if he is willing to give her up that quickly.
The reason Claudio believes Don John could be because he has got to much male pride. Beatrice believes all men are like this.
“Men are only turned into tongue”.
Beatrice is accusing men of saying that they love women but they do not show it with actions. He just jumps to a conclusion about Hero and doesn’t give her a chance to explain herself as he is very self-absorbing.
Claudio is jealous ans silent and he decides to humiliate Hero publicly. He thinks that Hero has been sleeping around with other men in Messina. The audience would see therefore that Claudio is cruel, mean and harsh, and that he didn’t give her a chance to explain.
“Is he not approved in the height a villain that hath slandered, scomed, dishonoured my kinswomen.”
Beatrice is prepared to kill Claudio she thinks that he is nasty as he has killed an innocent women.
When Claudio publicy humliates Hero at the wedding he also humiliates Leonato as well for what he has said. Leonato invites Claudio into his palace so he can marry Hero but then this happens.
“She knows the beat of a luxurious bed. Her blush is guiltiness, not modesty”.
In Elizabethan times this would have been the ultimate accusation and is a terrible insult. After the wedding, Beatrice and Benedick talk about what has just happened. Their accusations are accurate and to the point.
Leonato and Antonio both challenge Claudio about the accusations he has made in act 5,1. Claudio laughts at him and jokes about the challenge. This is a bit insensitive considering he has just lost his daughter.
“We had like to have had our two noses snapped off with two old men without teeth”.
This shows that Claudio strongly believes that he is right about Hero sleeping with other men so he is very nasty to him even though Hero is dead.
When Hero is declared innocent, Claudio pleads for mercy from Leonato. Leonato chooses his punishment. He must conduct a mourning ritual at her tomb and marry someone who Leonato will chose.
“Give her the right you should have given her cousin and so dies in my revenge”.
Leonato lets Claudio get away with killing Hero and sets up a marriage. This is a typical of a romantic comedy.
Even when Leonato can choose who Claudio marries, he still tells Claudio how much money he will inherit if he does. This would suggest that money is more important to him than who he marries.
“She alone is heir to both of us”.
Claudio will inherit Leonato and Antonio’s fortune.
Therefore, i conclude that Claudio does deserve Hero as a bride because even though he had made a very bad mistake by embarassing himself and Hero and the wedding scene, it was all Don Johns fault as Claudio believed him as he fort that he was a loyal friend. Also he has loved Hero since the first time he met her and this doesn’t change so therefore I think that Claudio does deserve Hero as a bride.