Twelfth Night Olivia's Suffering

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“Loving can hurt sometimes,” Ed Sheeran said, and this is no lie when it comes to Twelfth Night. Love is often an inevitable struggle in a plot, but in this Shakespearean play, a complete love triangle dominates as the main conflict. It cause happiness, excitement, deception, or even insanity, we still can’t seem to figure out if the benefits outweigh the consequences. Throughout Twelfth Night Shakespeare demonstrates love as a cause of suffering, a ‘knot that cannot be untied’ with Olivia’s love, Viola’s disguise, and Malvolio’s fake letter. Lady Olivia’s initial suffering contributes to the cause of this complex knot. Olivia cannot return the Duke’s love, or anyone’s for that matter, due to the recent loss of her brother and her seven year promise of . After the Duke sends Cesario to deliver his declaration of love, Olivia states, “Even so quickly may one catch the plague?" (I, v, 301) Olivia, already suffering from her mourning, suffers further do to this love, which is described as a ‘plague’. Infected by this love, Olivia sends Malvolio to deliver a ring to Cesario. Also, due to the disguise of Viola, she later confuses Sebastian for Cesario, thus giving him a pearl. The pearl and the ring are symbols of her love, and…show more content…
Before this quote, Olivia married Sebastian, thinking he was ‘Cesario’ due to their similar appearance. When it is revealed that the two twins were in Illyria, they realized that they were both alive even though they both thought the other died in a shipwreck. So, in the quote, Sebastian explained the misunderstanding and it was revealed that ‘Cesario’ was actually Viola. The realization of the twins further complicated the situation and the ‘knot’ of lovers. Viola 's disguise impacted the story in very important ways, entangling the knot of suffering lovers by causing Olivia to fall in love with her, hiding her own love for Orsino, and causing many misunderstandings with Sebastian. Malvolio’s suffering was also one of love’s foul
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