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Much Ado About Nothing – Benedick and Beatrice Essay

Benedick and Beatrice have close connections in the play, Benedick is portrayed to be a staunch bachelor, whereas Beatrice a combative character, also ironically, due to this being set in the Renaissance era, outspoken. Benedick is seen as very misogynistic.

Benedick is portrayed as a misogynistic character to the audience; this is presented on multiple occasions. Benedick inquires if Claudio would, “Buy” Hero. The verb “Buy” suggests that women were seen as objects in the Renaissance era. Claudio responds to Benedick, “Can the world buy such a jewel?” Benedick’s response also backs up the point that women were seen to be commodities in his view as he declares you can indeed buy her, “and a case to put [her] it in”. The noun “case” shows us that Benedick’s views are presented to the audience about his misogynistic sentiment. Benedick states that all women shall, “Pardon” him. He will do himself, “the right to trust none” explaining that he doesn’t trust women.

Beatrice is presented to the audience as being a very witty character, this is shown at the ‘masked ball’ where Beatrice pretends she doesn’t realise that the man in the mask is Benedick. Beatrice’s crude comments towards Benedick such as he is the, “Prince’s jester, a very dull fool”, Incorporating a sardonic tone in order to incorporate excess agony for Benedick.

Benedick is presented as a character that staunchly defends his decision to remain single, claiming he “will live a bachelor” forever. We can tell from the modal verb ‘will’ that he is in attempt to avoid women at all costs. Benedick’s explanation of a perfect women being, “fair…virtuous… rich… mild” is impossibly perfect, presenting him as not wanting a wife due to the fact there was no women with all these attributes in the Renaissance era therefore his status as a single man, a bachelor would remain unchallenged.

Beatrice is presented as a combative and outspoken character; this is shown immediately at the beginning of the play where Beatrice challenges Benedick to an intellectual battle of wits. Beatrice inquires why Benedick is “still talking”, when “nobody marks [him] you. The pronoun ‘nobody’ reinforces her low regard for him however still ironically reveals that she is the only person still interested in what he is saying. This shows Beatrice is uncharacteristic of the Renaissance paradigm of virtue in a woman, also challenging men.

In conclusion we can see the feelings regarding Beatrice and Benedick, and that they are portrayed towards the audience as argue mental towards each other. There conflicts may have a hidden meaning… such as when Beatrice was the only one interested in what Benedick was saying after she referred to no one being interested. Benedick is presented to the audience as being misogynistic and a staunch bachelor however he may have deeper affections for Beatrice. Beatrice is presented to the audience as being witty, combative and outspoken however her combative attempts are to do with her inner affection for Benedick.

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