Courtship And Marriage In Shakespeare's 'Much Ado About Nothing'

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Much Ado About Nothing Essay

Shakespeare’s ‘Much Ado about Nothing’ which was written around 1598, exhibits how he used language to present his critique on the 16th Century Italy. The use of courtship & marriage, gender representations as well as stylistic techniques for instance witty repartee resembles the style of living throughout the 16th century additionally established as the ‘Elizabethan era’. Shakespeare presents how homogeneous the play and the 16th Century actually were like, also how the women were treated and men were often deceived by others.

William Shakespeare displays a clear picture on how courtship and marriage was in 16th Century Italy by using deception. For instance, deception was used by Don John to subterfuge Claudio
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Leonato says with disappointment that ‘Death is the fairest cover for her shame.’ ( IV, 160, 114 ). Although Hero is not dead due to Leonato’s disgust, Friar Francis then informs Leonato to hide Hero in his house and tell everyone that she had died from shock and to do a proper burial ceremony for her. This was not common in the 16th Century although it did make a dramatic effect on the rest of Shakespeare’s book leading to Claudio marrying ‘Leonato’s brothers daughter’ who is actually Hero. All things considered, Shakespeare's use of deception for courtship and marriage was consistently used and therefore tricking characters into thinking something else like what happened to…show more content…
Even when Claudio was tricked into thinking that Hero was with someone else causing him to mock her on the day of the wedding, this was classed as a normal ‘act’ in the 16th Century.


SparkNotes: Italian Renaissance (1330-1550): Women in the Renaissance. 2017. SparkNotes: Italian Renaissance (1330-1550): Women in the Renaissance. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 07 March 2017].
Women in the Renaissance - Victoria and Albert Museum. 2017. Women in the Renaissance - Victoria and Albert Museum. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 07 March 2017].

SparkNotes, 2004. Much Ado About Nothing (No Fear Shakespeare). Edition.
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