Love, Hate & Marriage:
An Analytical Essay on the Relationship of Beatrice & Benedick
In William Shakespeare's comedy 'Much Ado About Nothing', the characters
Beatrice and Benedick are involved in what could only be called a 'love/hate'
relationship. The play is a classic example of this type of relationship, and allows us
to view one from the outside looking in. This gives us the chance to analyse the type
of relationship that at one time or another we all have been, or will be, involved in.
Both Beatrice and Benedick are strong-willed, intelligent characters, who fear
that falling in love will lead to a loss of freedom and eventually heartbreak. This causes
them to deny their love for each other and it is only through the machinations of other
characters in the play that their true feelings emerge. When these feelings are finally
acknowledged, both characters are changed, but the changes are subtle.
neither drastic nor monumental. Both remain who they were before, but now they the
two are one. They gain everything and lose nothing. Whether or not their love would
have bloomed without the help of their friends, we will never know.
In the beginning of the play, Beatrice and Benedick do not seem to like each
other very much, if at all. This can be seen in Act I; Scene I, (line 121-131):
BENEDICK: God keep your ladyship still in that mind! so some gentleman or other
shall 'scape a predestinate scratched face.
BEATRICE: Scratching could not make it worse, an 'twere such a face as yours were.
BENEDICK: Well, you are a rare parrot-teacher.
BEATRICE: A bird of my tongue is better than a beast of yours.
BENEDICK: I would my horse had the speed of your tongue, and so good a