Theme Of Orsino In Twelfth Night

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The character of Antonio in Twelfth Night was almost a requirement for the plot that Shakespeare delivered; not only did he provide a gift that connected the two characters of Sebastian and Cesario, but he also provided an example of devoted love. The devoted love that Shakespeare portrayed through Antonio’s speeches and actions provide a striking contrast to the love that Duke Orsino had throughout the plot. Even the gift that Antonio presents in the play is a symbol of his greater love compared to any of the other characters. Shakespeare uses Antonio to oppose the Petrarchan lover theme, as a tool to connect characters and to prove the final message of the play; undying love has no boundaries.
The theme of love and misery is present throughout the play, yet Antonio holds a passionate and honest love that is a great contrast to the Petrarchan lover, Duke Orsino. Orsino is a melancholic lover who is in love with the idea of being ‘in love’; but unbeknownst to Orsino his views on love are more towards his stomach it seems. The first lines of the play Orsino explains his skewed view on love, Orsino refers to love as an “appetite” and mentions that it is possible for the appetite to ‘sicken and die’ which was a foreshadow in my opinion of Orsino’s character because through the play he mentions how strong his love is for Olivia despite the fact that he suddenly loses interest in her when someone else is brought to his attention. The use of the word ‘die’ when talking about
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