A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare

1085 Words5 Pages
William Shakespeare is considered one of the most influential playwrights of all time. Shakespeare has written 37 plays, one of which is considered people’s most favorite play, the comedy “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” A Midsummer Night’s Dream is believed to have been written between 1590 and 1596. “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” takes place in Athens in an ancient Greece and is a lighthearted, magical toned play. The play starts with the Duke of Athens, Theseus and Hippolyta preparing for their nuptials. Egeus seeks Theseus intervention and brings Lysander, Demetrius, and Hermia to Theseus in Act I, Scene 1 to "beg the ancient privilege of Athens" because Egeus daughter Hermia, will not agree to his choice of Demetrius as a husband, a young man of a noble Athenian family. Hermia is not in love with Demetrius, but loves another man of a noble Athenian family named Lysander. Egeus disapproves of Hermia’s choice of Lysander and appeals to Theseus to force Hermia to marry Demetrius. Egeus is asking Theseus to apply the Athenian law, which would send Hermia to her death for not abiding by her father's wishes. Theseus choses to allow Hermia to choose her fate: she can die, marry Demetrius, or become a nun. Hermia responds that she would rather become a nun than marry Demetrius. Theseus gives her four days to think on her decision. Here is where the law verses true love comes into play, Egeus character illustrates the play’s theme of law. Egeus refuses to listen to his daughter and demands she marries Demetrius or else die. Hermia embodies the opposition to the law and her father’s wishes; here is where Hermia character illustrates the plays theme of true love. She is a strong-willed young woman in love with Lysander and determines she is...

... middle of paper ...

...sander, her true love. In the end, true love wins over law.

Works Cited
Chamberlain, Stephanie. "The Law Of The Father: Patriarchal Economy In A Midsummer Night's Dream." Journal Of The Wooden O Symposium 11.(2011): 28-40. Academic Search Complete. Web. 24 Nov. 2013.
"Literature: Reading Fiction, Poetry, Drama and the Essay." DiYanni, Robert. 6th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1393-1453. Print.
Montros, Louis Adrian. ""Shaping Fantasies": Figurations of Gender and Power in Elizabethan Culture." Representations, No. 2 (1983): 61-94. Print.
"Overview: A Midsummer Night's Dream." Literature and Its Times: Profiles of 300 Notable Literary Works and the Historical Events that Influenced Them. Joyce Moss and George Wilson. Vol. 1: Ancient Times to the American and French Revolutions (Prehistory-1790s). Detroit: Gale, 1997. Literature Resource Center. Web. 6 Nov. 2013.
Open Document