Marriage in the Renaissance and Shakespeare's As You Like It Essays

:: 6 Works Cited
Length: 1523 words (4.4 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Blue      
Open Document

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Marriage in the Renaissance and As You Like It

   The concept of marriage has been considered to be a sacred and traditional part of life since the beginning of relationships between human beings. The rules of these intimate relationships were set up in accordance with church law. Such rules consisted of the conventional/typical marriage and the ritual of marriage (ceremony). William Shakespeare examines the customs of marriage practice of the Renaissance time period in his work As You Like It.


Marriage at the time focused on a heterosexual relationship between a man and woman. Kirsti S. Thomas, explains that marriage did not concern the true love element that exists in the typical marriages of today. At the time of Shakespeare, she states that marriage "served to transfer wealth or property and to continue the family line" (2). Marriages were the result of socially and economically oriented environments, similar to the caste system in India. According to a web source specializing in Renaissance weddings, such couplings of "...arranged marriages of the upper class were decided when the bride and groom were young, usually ten to eleven years. Lower class marriages had similar motives, however they were the result of pregnancies " (3). Generally, the marriage had to have full consent of at a family member or parental guardian. There were many ordinances and specific codes of conduct that had to be followed before a wedding was to take place. Thomas describes one of these ordinances with having two guidelines, "In order to be recognized by the church, one of the partners must give consent and the priest must say the formula, 'we join together in this holy matrimony...'" (6). Courtly love did exist, and was encourage...

... middle of paper ...

...t.  Consentual marriage was between a man and a woman. The ritual of a marriage ceremony was more secular and inter-linked with the Catholic church. Throughout the characters in the play, those themes are illustrated.


Works Cited

Coulton, G.G. Life in the Middle Ages. Cambridge University Press. 1967. P. 83

Davis, William Steams. Life of a Medieval Barony. Harper and Row. New York. 1951. P. 109-112.

Greensblatt, Stephen.  The Norton Shakespeare Oxford Edition. W.W. Norton and Co. New York. 1997. 1591-1656.

Thomas, Kirsti S/ "Medieval and Renaissance Marriage: Theory and Customs". Medieval and Renaissance Wedding Page.

Ed: Kuehl B.J. 1995. Date Accessed: 14 October 2002.

Renaissance Weddings. 2001. World Web Design, LLC. Date Accessed: 14 October 2002.

Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

This essay is 100% guaranteed.

Title Length Color Rating  
Relationships in Shakespeare's As You Like It Essay - Relationships in As You Like It      "Pronounce that sentence on me, my liege. I cannot live out of her company"(Shakespeare quoted in Norton Anthology 1611). Who made these remarks about the dear Rosalind, was it Celia, the one whom she calls 'coz', or is Orlando the man that she is in love with. The question then becomes if Celia said these words what was her meaning. Is it that Celia is attracted to Rosalind as more than a friend or is this just an example of the female friendships of the time....   [tags: Shakespeare As You Like It Essays]
:: 5 Works Cited
1433 words
(4.1 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Essay on Gender in Shakespeare's As You Like It - Questions of Gender in Shakespeare's As You Like It        Throughout history, men and women have been assigned specific roles to which society prescribes standards and qualifications. There are certain tasks that have been traditionally completed only by men, and others that have been assigned to women; most of which are separated by the realm of the domestic sphere. During the period of the Renaissance, men and women were assigned very different roles within society. The value, social expectations, legal status, and rights of citizenship differed greatly between the sexes as well as among the classes....   [tags: Shakespeare As You Like It Essays]
:: 7 Works Cited
1940 words
(5.5 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Essay on Renaissance Family Values and Their Significance to As You Like It - Renaissance Family Values and Their Significance to As You Like It        When I began my research for this paper, I did not have a good understanding of the term "Renaissance".  Therefore, I thought that it was a good idea to clarify on this before I tried to learn about what family life was like at that time, and I also thought it might be interesting to look at Shakespeare's family.   The word "Renaissance" means rebirth and refers to the 15th Century, between the years 1350 and 1600 (Greene Malvasi, par....   [tags: Shakespeare As You Like It Essays]
:: 10 Works Cited
1910 words
(5.5 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Gender and Social Norms in Shakespeare's As You Like It Essay - Gender and Social Norms in As You Like It        Shakespeare based his comedy As You Like It primarily on three other works.  Its plot follows the basic structure of Rosalynde, published in 1590 by Thomas Lodge.  The Tale of Gamelyn, written by an unknown author in the mid-fourteenth century, is a violent Middle English narrative that was found among Chaucer's papers and provides further details for Shakespeare's work.  With the Forest of Ardenne serving as an escape for our main characters, Shakespeare takes his details from the countless Robin Hood ballads popular in Medieval England.  This paper will examine how Shakespeare's adaptations and alterations of emphasis and plot from these...   [tags: Shakespeare As You Like It Essays]
:: 10 Works Cited
1683 words
(4.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Aging In the Reanissance and As You Like It - Aging In the Reanissance and As You Like It       Life starts upon the exit from the mother's womb. From that moment, time marches on until the inevitable death occurs to take one once again from the world of the living. Life and death fascinated various playwrights and authors of the Renaissance. Shakespeare made his interest in aging known in many of his plays and sonnets. He approaches this continuing theme from many angles. In many of his sonnets he talks about aging and how the image changes as one ages and gets older and less attractive....   [tags: Shakespeare As You Like It Essays]
:: 6 Works Cited
1796 words
(5.1 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Love and Marriage in Renaissance Literature Essay - Love and Marriage in Renaissance Literature In medieval Europe, the troubadours (poets of the southern part of France), like Guilhem IX, or Cercamon, first began to write poems about humble men falling in love with women who were admirer and adored by their lovers. Furthermore, intense love between men and women became a central subject in European literature, like between Tristan and Iseult, Lancelot and Guinevere, or Aeneas and Dido. But it was not question of marriage. Actually, marriage and love did not match very well together but then Renaissance literature developed the concepts of love and marriage and recorded the evolution of the relation between them...   [tags: Papers] 970 words
(2.8 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Family and Marriage in Shakespeare's Comedy of Errors Essay - Comedy of Errors - Family and Marriage Shakespeare's Comedy of Errors is a madcap romp of mistakes and misadventures, wrapping together two Plautine comedies sauced with Scripture and Renaissance poetry. Yet the tangled web of estranged family that Shakespeare weaves holds significant differences from any of his originals, pointing to ideas about family and marriage that Shakespeare no doubt held, and was to develop further in later works. Plautus' Menaechmi yields a basic framework for Shakespeare's plot: two long-separated brothers mistaken for one another....   [tags: Shakespeare Comedy of Errors Essays] 526 words
(1.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Representation of Masculinity the Renaissance Family and Shakespeare's Macbeth - Representation of Masculinity the Renaissance Family and Shakespeare's Macbeth Familiarity with Shakespeare's work often leads to awareness to the representation of masculinity, gender roles, and the patriarchal order as these subjects are often greatly reflected in his writing. Renaissance concept of order meant there was a shift from what used to be an Open Lineage Family, to a Restricted Patriarchal Nuclear Family. In turn, Renaissance families saw an increase in obligations to the church and state....   [tags: Papers] 1241 words
(3.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Cross-Dressing in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night and As You Like It Essay - Cross-Dressing in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night and As You Like It In Shakespeare's plays Twelfth Night and As You Like It both of the lead female characters dress as men. Both plays are comedies and the change in gender is used as a joke, but I think it goes much deeper. A woman can become a man, but only if it is not permanent. The affect of the change cannot be too great because she must change back to female once everything is settled. They are strong female characters, but must become men to protect themselves and ultimately solve the problem of the play....   [tags: Comparison Compare Contrast Essays]
:: 3 Works Cited
1737 words
(5 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet Essay - William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet ‘Romeo and Juliet' was written in the year 1595 by William Shakespeare. The story is based of two teenagers who are in a love affair. It is set in Verona, Italy. In this essay I shall explore how Juliet is not a typical renaissance daughter, but more of a modern day women. Firstly, a typical renaissance daughter was expected to respect, her elders without questioning them. However, Juliet does respect her elders but however she does not listen to there rules they have set for her....   [tags: Romeo Juliet Analysis Shakespeare] 1341 words
(3.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]