William Shakespeare 's Twelfth Night Essay

2172 Words Dec 19th, 2016 9 Pages
William Shakespeare was a poet and a playwright. Some of his plays are Hamlet, King Lear, The Tempest, and The Winter’s Tale. Also one of Shakespeare’s play is Twelfth Night, or What You Will which is a comedy written around they year 1601 and consists of five acts. According to The Norton Anthology of English Literature, Shakespeare wrote Twelfth Night for his “all-male company” (Shakespeare 1187). In which during Shakespeare’s time plays were performed by men acting both the female and male roles. The earliest record of this play being performed on stage was in February of 1602 which was mentioned in John Manningham’s diary. The subtitle of the play What You Will “underscores the celebratory spirit associated with Twelfth Night, the Feast of the Epiphany (January 6)” (Shakespeare 1187).
So, Twelfth Night is about twin siblings, Viola and Sebastian, who become separated in a shipwreck, thinking the other has died. Viola ends in in Illyria where she decides to disguise or transform herself (appearance, voice, and body language) into a man named Cesario. She ends up falling in love with Duke Orsino, still disguised as a man, as she tries to help him win the affection of the women he loves, Countess Olivia, who is mourning the death of her brother and vows not to marry for seven years. However, by Cesario/Viola helping Orsino profess his love to Olivia, Olivia winds up falling in love with Cesario unbeknownst that Cesario is actually a woman. This thus creates an…

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