One of Shakespeare’s last comedies is Much Ado About Nothing. It is filled with laughter, yet there are some dark aspects that make the play seem part tragedy. There is love at first sight with Hero and Claudio; there is love that develops with Benedick and Beatrice, evil scheming with Don John and his accomplices, Borachio and Conrad, and a very emotional and dramatic confusion that is the play’s namesake.
Something that is displayed greatly throughout the drama is the relationship between Benedick and Beatrice. It is foreshadowed that they would fall in love in the first act of the drama. A small battle of wits is ensued upon Benedick’s arrival at Leonato’s home.
BENEDICK: What, my dear Lady Disdain! Are you yet living?
BEATRICE: Is it possible disdain should die while she hath such meet
food to feed it as Signor Benedick? Courtesy itself must
convert to disdain if you come in her presence.
BENEDICK: Then is courtesy a turncoat. But it is certain I am loved of
all ladies, only you excepted. And would I could find in
my heart that I had not a hard heart, for truly I love none.
BEATRICE: A dear happiness to women. They would else have been
troubled by a pernicious suitor. I thank God and my cold
blood I am of your humor for that. I had rather hear my dog
bark at a crow than a man swear he loves me (I.i. 95-105).
Yet that was not the end of this argument, nor was it the only they had. It is this relationship that many of the people who read the play or who watch and produce a performance enjoy.
In Act II Scene I, Beatrice describes what would be the perfect man. To summarize, he would have half of Don John’s seriousness and half of Benedick’s chatter, and he would have to be handsome and rich. ...
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...ful confessions, “BENEDICK: I do love nothing in the world so well as you. Is not that / strange?” (IV.i.265-266). “BEATRICE: I love you with so much of my heart that none is left to / protest” (IV.i.282-283). Benedick loves Beatrice so much that he forsakes his friendship with Claudio and swears to Beatrice that he will “challenge him” (IV.i. 323), which Beatrice assumes is he will kill Claudio, as she asked him.
Crowther, John, ed. “No Fear Much Ado About Nothing.” SparkNotes.com. SparkNotes LLC. 2005. Web. 11 Dec 2013.
“The Chronology of Shakespeare’s Plays.” Shakespeare Online. n.p. n.d. Web. 11 Dec 2013.
“Genesis Chapter 2.” The Official King James Bible Online. n.p. n.d. Web. 11 Dec 2013.
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