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Much Ado About Nothing. By William Shakespeare. Genre. Comedy – made up of a series of complications and misunderstandings that are resolved in the end Tragicomedy – the complications in the play have the potential to turn disastrous or even deadly for the character. Other Terms.

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much ado about nothing

Much Ado About Nothing

By William Shakespeare

genre
Genre

Comedy – made up of a series of complications and misunderstandings that are resolved in the end

Tragicomedy – the complications in the play have the potential to turn disastrous or even deadly for the character

other terms
Other Terms

Cuckold – a negative term for man whose wife cheats on him; cuckolds are portrayed as having horns

Pun – a joke that is based on the fact that word can have more than one meaning or that words with different meanings can sound alike

Q: How come a camel is so hard to see in the desert?

A: Camel-flage

the title
The Title

Much Ado About Nothing – a big deal about nothing

Nothing is also a pun for noting

Much of the play deals with characters “noting” – observing others, overhearing something or writing something down

These “notings” are often not accurate – characters mishear, misunderstand what they hear, and report the wrong information

characters
Characters

Don Pedro – sometimes called “the Prince”; an important nobleman who is close to the soldiers fighting under him

Leonato – the governor of Messina; a wealthy nobleman; the play takes place in his home

Hero – Leonato’s beautiful young daughter

Claudio – a young soldier who falls in love with Hero

characters1
Characters

Benedick – a soldier fighting under Don Pedro; he swears he will never marry and does not trust women

Beatrice – Leonato’s niece and cousin of Hero. She can be kind and caring, but also use her wit to tease and mock others.

Don John – Don Pedro’s illegitimate half-brother; “the bastard”; he is jealous of his brother

characters2
Characters

Magaret and Ursula – two of Hero’s serving woman

Borachio and Conrad – friends of Don John who help him with his evil schemes

Dogberry – the chief of police in Messina

Verges – the deputy to Dogberry

Antonio – Leonato’s older brother; Hero and Beatrice’s uncle

Balthasar – a servant and musician in Leonato’s household

what s your opinion is each statement true or false
What’s Your OpinionIs each statement true or false?

People choose who they fall in love with.

Most men and women eventually cheat.

It’s better to stay single than risk being cheated on by your spouse.

Men are attracted to women who are assertive and bold.

Jealousy in a romantic relationship is a sign of serious problems.

Rumors and gossip can destroy even the strongest relationships