Tempest is Shakespeare’s last play written in 1610. Prospero is The Tempest main protagonist. He is exile to an isolated island after his brother (Antonio) conspires to kill him for the desire of taking his position as a duke of Milan. Prospero manages to escape with his three-year-old daughter to the island. The play starts after 12 years of Prospero’s living in the Isle. The play is more like a test for Prospero to discover his wickedness and find a typical way to adjust them. In the beginning, Prospero has two servants: Ariel, who has a godlike power and serves him in fulfilling his magical plan, and Caliban, half human half beast, supports him in fetching wood and water. Later on in the play, Prospero receives another servant, Ferdinand, the prince of Naples, who wishes to serve him in order to marry his daughter Miranda. The three servants are totally different from each other, therefore; they represent three different things for Prospero and the audience as well. The play reflects the rule of the Great Chain of Being in the Renaissance philosophy of the universe. This paper argues about the different representations of Prospero’s three servants: Ariel, Caliban, and Ferdinand. And who is the typical representation for him to follow?
Prospero has two servants: Ariel, the soul; the spirit that represents the space between angle and human being in the Great Chain of Being, and Caliban; the earth that represent the space between human being and beast. The two servants represent Prospero’s thinking and inner morality. “The play’s designs illustrate the basic doctrine of Renaissance humanist philosophy. Mankind is a creature a little lower than the angels, caught between the bestial and ...
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Would even infect my mouth, I do forgive
Thy rankest fault, all of them, and require
My dukedom of thee, which perforce, I know,
Thou must restore.( 5.1.133-37)
Prospero ends up working as Ferdinand, natural human beings. He is ready to lose his magic power so as to return his position as Duke of Milan. Alonso tells him: “Thy dukedom I resign and do entreat / Thou pardon me my wrongs” (5.1.117-19). He follows Ariel’s advice “to show mercy rather than to exact revenge” (Garber 865). He does not want to keep his magic book and stay like Ariel in the level of angles. Also, he does not take revenge and become rude like Caliban in the level of the beast. But he chooses to be wise and fair obedient like Ferdinand, return to his job as duke and take serious responsibility of his duty. His chooses is at the center of the human being level in the Great Chain of Being.
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