An Introduction to A Midsummer Night's Dream No play was ever named more appropriately than this; it is a "Dream," - a dream composed of elves, mistakes, wild fantasies, and the grotesque. Its time is night. When the day dawns the shadows flee away, the dramatis personae awake, and all comes right again.
Peter Quince and his company are rehearsing their rendition of Pyramus and Thisbe. Bottom has serious reservations about the play: Pyramus kills himself with a sword, and the lion is frightening, both factors that are sure to terrify the women in the audience.
The other players agree, wondering if the play should be abandoned, but Bottom has a solution. A prologue needs to be written to explain that Pyramus is only an actor, and the actor playing the lion must show half of his face during his performance and tell the audience his true identity.
With these problems successfully solved, Quince mentions two other difficulties with the upcoming performance: It requires moonshine and a wall.
After consulting a calendar, they discover that the moon will be shining on the night of the performance, so they can simply leave a window open. The wall is a greater dilemma for these silly men.
Finally, Bottom discovers a solution: An actor covered in plaster will play the role of the wall. Everyone agrees, and the rehearsal begins. Puck eavesdrops on the performance, amused by the way these actors butcher their lines.
The egotistical Bottom sits in the bushes, waiting his cue, and Puck can't resist playing a joke on him: He gives Bottom an ass' head.
When Bottom enters, declaring his love for Thisbe, the other terrified actors dash into the woods. Unaware of his transformation, Bottom has no idea what has frightened them. As he walks singing through the woods, Titania, with the love juice on her eyes, awakens and falls immediately in love with the beastly Bottom.
She appoints four fairies — Peaseblossom, Cobweb, Mote, and Mustardseed — to serve the needs of her new lover. Analysis The play's humor continues in this scene through the vehicle of the players. As in Act I, Scene 1, their belief in the audience's gullibility is highlighted.
Bottom has found a new objection to the play: Pyramus must kill himself, which will offend the women in the audience. Again, his comments show his belief that the audience will be unable to differentiate reality from fantasy.
To combat this problem, Bottom proposes an elaborate Prologue that will explain Pyramus' identity. Similarly, the lion must show half of his face so the audience will know he is a man rather than a beast. Quince brings two other difficulties to the players' attention: Again the question hinges on the problem of representation: In the players' opinion, the audience possesses a strong imagination, so with the correct costuming, a man can impersonate any object.
For example, with some plaster on his clothing, Snout can become a wall; with a lantern, he can "disfigure," according to Quince, moonshine. Quince's malapropism here is comical, yet correct: These players do, indeed, "disfigure," rather than "figure" the word Quince meant to use the characters they play.
Similarly, Bottom's misuse of words continues to be funny in this scene, partially because, at bottom, they are correct, given the context of these actors' inept performance; for example, he says "defect" rather than "effect" in line 38 or "odious" rather than "odorous" in lines In all of these circumstances, Shakespeare assumes an audience intelligent enough to recognize Bottom's misuses but equally capable of seeing the comic correctness in Bottom's mistakes.
The wall between reality and fantasy breaks down as the scene continues.
While Bottom presented an ineffective impersonation of Pyramus, he offers a stunning performance of an ass. The players are clearly taken in by Bottom's new guise, sprinting out of the woods to escape what they see as a haunting. Puck's magic is similar to the actors'. In fact, when he first sees them rehearsing, Puck claims that he'll become an actor, if necessary, and says that he can effectively translate himself into numerous other characters: Puck is the ideal actor, able to personify any role with haunting veracity.
Indeed, his art seems to be Shakespeare's ideal for actors — like Puck, they should prey on their audience's imaginations, breaking the walls between imagination and reason, leading us to new worlds, haunting us with visions our rational minds cannot comprehend.
Puck is also the ideal director, casting Bottom in the role for which he is most suited:Puck - Also known as Robin Goodfellow, Puck is Oberon’s jester, a mischievous fairy who delights in playing pranks on mortals.
Though A Midsummer Night’s Dream divides its action between several groups of characters, Puck is the closest thing the play has to a protagonist. His enchanting. This one-page guide includes a plot summary and brief analysis of A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare.
English playwright William Shakespeare wrote a Midsummer Night’s Dream in , during his early comedic period. Puck - Also known as Robin Goodfellow, Puck is Oberon’s jester, a mischievous fairy who delights in playing pranks on mortals.
Though A Midsummer Night’s Dream divides its action between several groups of characters, Puck is the closest thing the play has to a protagonist. His enchanting. A Midsummer Night's Dream is a comedy written by William Shakespeare in / It portrays the events surrounding the marriage of Theseus, the Duke of Athens, to Hippolyta, the former queen of the Amazons.
A Midsummer Night’s Dream by: William Shakespeare First performed around , Shakespeare’s comic fantasy of four lovers who find themselves bewitched by fairies is a sly reckoning with love, jealousy and marriage. This practical and insightful reading guide offers a complete summary and analysis of A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William rutadeltambor.com provides a thorough exploration of the play’s plot, characters and main themes, including romance and fantasy.