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Much Ado About Nothing | Study Guide

William Shakespeare

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Much Ado About Nothing | Infographic

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Check out this Infographic to learn more about William Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing. Study visually with character maps, plot summaries, helpful context, and more.

much-ado-about-nothing-william-shakespeare_UPDATEMain CharactersFriendsRomanceFamilyBeatriceHeros feisty, mocking, quick-witted cousinLeonatoElderly governor of MessinaDon PedroPlayful older prince of AragonClaudioYoung lord from Florence; preparing for weddingHeroLeonatos warm, virtuous daughterDon JohnSpiteful, calculating villainBenedickJolly, clever young lord from PaduaLeonato, Act II, Scene ILord, my lord, if they were but a week married, they would talk themselves mad.Ghost” (non-speaking) character, Innogen, who appears in early editions of the play1Couples who get married at the end of the play2Year a black-and-white, modern film adaptation, directed by Joss Whedon, premiered2012Much AdoAbout Nothingby the NumbersWILLIAM SHAKESPEARE1564–1616AuthorMuch Ado About Nothing is one of the English playwrights numerous comedies. It shares characteristics with many of them: mistaken identities; conspiracies; clever word play; a twisting, turning, complicated plot; and likable buffoons. As in the others, in Much Ado, alls well that ends well.”LanguageCharacters use language to maintain their social roles, while Beatrice and Benedicks war of words leads them to affection.TrickeryDon Pedro contrives to make Beatrice and Benedick fall in love, while Don John deceitfully blocks Heros marriage.HonorHeros reputation and future hinge on her chastity, and manhood means standing up for those wronged.ThemesSet in an Italian villa, Much Ado About Nothing follows Claudios courtship of the governors daughter, Hero, and their wedding plans. The plans go awry when the princes bitter brother accuses Hero of unchastity. Meanwhile, their friends Beatrice and Benedick engage in witty repartee as others scheme to make them fall in love.Bait the Hook Well: This Fish Will Bite.OVERVIEWClaudio and his friends arrive in Messina. Beatrice and Benedick spar verbally.Benedick and Beatrice are tricked into thinking the other is in love with them.Dogberry brings the truth to light; when Hero greets Claudio at the altar, both couples wed happily.Claudio is made to believe Hero is not a virgin; her family pretends she dies.William Shakespeare1598–99EnglishPlay AuthorYears WrittenOriginal LanguageComedyMuch AdoAbout Nothing1435Don Pedro woos Hero for Claudio, but Don John hatches a plan to interfere.2Sources: Encyclopaedia Britannica, The Guardian, IMDb,Merriam-Websters Encyclopedia of Literature Copyright © 2016 Course Hero, Inc.

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