Twelfth Night, by William Shakespeare

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In Twelfth Night, Shakespeare portrays several characters in a controversial way. Some witty characters are portrayed as foolish, and some foolish characters are portrayed as witty. In the beginning of the play, Sir Andrew and Malvolio are presented as smart people; however, as the play progresses, the audience is exposed to their foolish sides. On the other hand, Sir Toby and Feste are portrayed as fools, but as the plot develops the audience acknowledges their wisdom. Malvolio and Sir Andrew’s foolish sides are exposed because of their gullible nature, while Feste and Sir Toby’s wisdom is revealed through their insightful remarks and brilliant prank ideas.

The author uses convincing dialogue to illustrate Sir Andrew, and Malvolio as witty characters. With the same great expertise, he transforms those characters and exposes their foolishness to the viewers. Sir Andrew is one of the many thoughtless brains in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. In the beginning of the play, he was recognized for speaking “three or four languages word for word without book” but later on, Shakespeare unleashes Sir Andrew’s gullible nature (I.iii.24). For instance, when Sir Toby was going back and forth between Cesario and Sir Andrew, delivering false threats, Sir Andrew became extremely frightened and said “pox on ‘t! I’ll not meddle with him” (III. Iv.252). Malvolio impresses the audience with his presentable and well-mannered etiquette. He is described as the naive goody two shoes. However, the audience was able to view his gullible side, when he received a prank love letter, and transformed himself into an air-headed fool dressed up in yellow stockings. Despite his sharp and smart looks in the beginning, he turned out to be a complete chump. Even thoug...

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Situational irony and the love triangle give big laughs to the viewers. The audience becomes engrossed as they observe Violas transformation into Cesario, the Duke’s servant. Suspense is built as Viola begins to realize that she is falling in love with Duke Orisno, but in order for her to survive; she has to keep pretending to be a man and is unable to reveal her love. The irony settles in when Orisno, asks his close servant Cesario to go to Olivia and make her understand how deeply he loves her. Shakespeare shows her helplessness in this situation because she has to help her love, try to woo someone else. The irony builds into a love triangle as Olivia begins to fall in love with Cesario as “he” loved Orisno. Olivia’s love is confirmed when she says “Yet come again, for thou perhaps mayst move that heart, which now abhors, to like his love” (III.i.153).
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