Act 3 scene 2 of A Midsummer Night’s Dream Essay

Act 3 scene 2 of A Midsummer Night’s Dream

‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ is a comedy written by Shakespeare in the

Elizabethan times, still performed in the present day. At Act 3 scene

2 we are probably at the height of confusion in the play. Each of the

four lovers loves someone who does not love them. Demetrius loves

Hermia, Hermia loves Lysander, Lysander loves Helena and Helena loves

Demetrius. All this chaos is down to Puck, a mischievous fairy whose

job is to stir up trouble to amuse the fairy King. Not only has he

been distorting the lives of humans, but also the fairy Queen. She is

momentarily in love with a mortal with an ass’ head (also as a

consequence of Puck’s actions).

The audience has the advantage at this point as they are all knowing,

making them feel as though they are a little superior. They know that

the fairies exist and all of Puck’s activities. The audience is

expecting that Oberon will sort out the mess after seeing the chaos

that Puck’s actions have caused.

At the beginning of the scene we see Puck describing how he

successfully ‘An ass’s nole fixed upon’ Bottom’s head and how he then

fabricated the love between him and Titania. Puck is very pleased with

himself at all the upheaval he has induced. The audience sees his

mischievous and naughty side once more. It also tells the audience

that Puck is dedicated to pleasing his King. It is obvious that Puck

thinks very little of ‘mortals’. He describes them as ‘The shallowest

thick-skin of that barren sort’ making them seem very stupid. And also

as ‘wild geese’ which are seen as senseless annoying animals.

In this part of the scene rhyming couplets are used…

… middle of paper …

…ving the matter and

leaving Puck and Oberon alone. Oberon is appalled once again by Puck’s

conduct. Puck claims he is sorry, ‘I mistook’ he says and declares

that he is ‘so far blameless’. This again flaunts his impish side

enforced even more by his second statement describing the lover’s

chaos as ‘jangling’ and a ‘sport’. This means it gave him great

pleasure to see humans in such a predicament.

At the end of the scene the audience is left feeling a mixture of

emotions. Relief that all this chaos will be sorted out but also

gladdened that each of the lovers will have someone who loves them

back. However, the audience does not yet know whether the spells will

work, whether all will be well. So there is still a sense of

anticipation at the end of this scene as Puck exits leaving the stage

empty for the next scene.

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