Love's Impact on "Twelfth Night"

Essay by silly__High School, 10th gradeA-, May 2006

download word file, 5 pages 5.0

Love is a relentless condition of life and living that affects every human being. Whether it be "a strong affection arising out of kinship or personal ties" (Merriam-Webster), like the platonic love between friends or family, "a temporary attraction based on sexual desire" (Merriam-Webster), like a lustful love, or an "affection and tenderness felt by lovers" (Merriam-Webster) like a romantic love, everyone has experienced some form of love. Even in the 1600's, William Shakespeare explored love and its human impacts through his plays. With love and its consequences Shakespeare created tragic love stories, such as Romeo and Juliet, and comedies, like that of Twelfth Night. The characters of Twelfth Night are greatly affected by love. There are many types of love experienced by the characters that are all very significant to the scheme of the play, although romantic love seems to have the greatest impact on most of the characters.

While romantic love has the most effect on the characters, all the types of love together produce Shakespeare's comedy. Although Twelfth Night is a comedy concerned with many important types of love, such as romantic, obsessive, lustful, and platonic, it is romantic love that has the most impact on the main characters of the play.

Love is the main theme of Twelfth Night and Shakespeare includes many different types of love that are all important to the plot of his play. One type of love he includes is platonic love. Platonic love is experienced by Orsino towards Cesario, Viola's disguised character. Orsino believes Viola's disguise, and sees her as Cesario, whom he takes to quickly, as Orsino's servant Valentine tells Viola: Orsino "hath known you but three days and already you are in the continuance of his love" (1.4.3-6). As his servant, Orsino grows to trust and be fond of...