Analysis of Shakespeares Twelfth Night

Analysis of Twelfth Night William Shakespeare, arguably the most important writer in all of English literature, is certainly the most influential playwright of the English Renaissance. Born in 1564 in Stratford-upon-Avon in rural northern England, he was the son of a middle-class glovemaker. Competing against such illustrious company as Christopher Marlowe and Ben Johnson, Shakespeare quickly became one of the most popular playwrights in the city of London and a favorite of the monarch, the powerful and long-lived Queen Elizabeth I. Shakespeare wrote thirty-eight plays in the course of his twenty-five-year career; a few of them apparently in collaboration with other people, but most of them solo. Twelfth Night was written near the middle of Shakespeares career, probably in the year 1601, and most critics consider it one of his greatest comedies. This plays plot of illusions, deceptions, disguises, and the extraordinary things love causes us to do and to see, made it very entertaining for its audience four hundred years ago, and after all this time this comedy still gets some good laughs out of most of us. The story begins when, off the coasts of the country of Illyria, a terrible shipwreck is caused by a storm. Viola, the plays protagonist, is swept onto the shores along with the friendly sea captain that saved her life. Finding herself in a strange land, Viola assumes that her twin brother, Sebastian, has drowned in the wreck, and tries to figure out what kind of work can she do. The Captain tells her about a local nobleman, Duke Orsino, who is courting a beautiful but reluctant noblewoman, Lady Olivia. Since Lady Olivia refuses to talk to any stranger, Viola cannot look for work with her. But she decides to disguise herself as a man, taking on the name of Cesario, and goes to work for the Duke. Viola, dressed as Cesario, becomes a favorite of the Duke and makes him his page. But Viola finds herself falling in …

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