Puck's Speech (Midsummer Night's Dream)

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 12th grade February 2008

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In many ways, the character Puck acts as the primary narrator to Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream." Puck successfully brings together all aspects discussed in the story by playing the part of the story-teller. In the closing, Puck shows his full narration with a conclusion to the play in the form of a speech.

Puck's final speech is a good way of ending the play because it addresses the audience as a character, bringing them further into the story and adding a more personal view, as if Shakespeare himself was thanking his audience for lending him their time. In this way, Shakespeare is able to communicate with his readers and viewers through his characters, even to this day.

In Puck's final speech, he refers to the creatures of the forest (fairies and spirits alike) as "shadows". This is appropriate because they are figments of the imagination, causing merriment and excitement only from the power of creativity and fantasy.

Puck asks for forgiveness from the audience if he or any of the other sprites caused disapproval among the spectators, due to their playful nature. Furthermore, if they have been offended, he suggests that they remind themselves it was all in good fun, and pretend they have done nothing more than slept and dreamt of these vivid images. This way, they have lost nothing and gained imagination. By ending Shakespeare's work with the asking of forgiveness, the audience is moved and made to feel generous, even when they are the ones who were generously provided with entertainment. Puck asks for the applause of the audience if they "be friends" and says he will repay their kindness for enjoying the production.

The final speech of the play is perhaps the most important part because it not only addresses the audience as part of the intimate cast, but it also reminds them of the main theme that runs throughout the entire work, which is imagination. Puck reminds the audience that sometimes, the dreamy, playful world can teach us more than the technical world, constantly full of plot and accuracies.

In the words of Albert Einstein, "imagination is more important than knowledge." This idea is most definitely demonstrated within "A Midsummer Night's Dream" and comes across to the viewers and readers very strongly as a message to appreciate the lucid, dream-like creativity in life.