“Twelfth Night” is a play written by William Shakespeare in the 17th Century that was supposed to be performed on the twelve days of Christmas. The play is about twins that get separated. Viola one of the twins, lands on an unknown land. She disguises herself as a man to work for Orsino, the duke of the land. She does all this to meet Olivia, the woman Orsino is wooing. While wooing Olivia for Orsino, Olivia starts to fall in love with Cesario (Viola’s male name). Throughout the play Viola starts to fall in love with Orsino as they get closer and closer.
This love triangle gets more and more complicated throughout the play until Sebastian, the other twin, appears and marries Olivia. Orsino thinks Cesario has betrayed him until everyone meets and Sebastian and Viola reunite. Orsino, now understanding, realises he has been chasing the wrong woman and marries Viola to her great joy. The festival of twelfth night starts on Christmas day and ends on 6th January. The festival brings a lot of enjoyment for all people. A lot of food is eaten and wine is drunk. Shakespeare uses roles in his play to mimic people on twelfth night.
Like the Twelfth night celebration, Viola plays a role beneath her actual status. Sir Toby Belch and Sir Andrew Arguecheek are the enjoyment and drunkenness side of Twelfth night. Feste (the clown) differs and is all seeing and knowing about the play. Shakespeare uses this festival of twelfth night to entertain with another play. However there is a tragic element to the play. Malvolio a puritan works hard to close theatres. He uses appearance to show hypocrisy which adds humour. He pretends to be a puritan but he really sees himself rich and powerful.
Shakespeare does it because the puritans were getting dangerous. He is foretelling the closure of the theatre when Malvolio says “I’ll be reveng’d on the whole pack of you! ” Viola the main character of the play is one of two twins. Viola and Sebastian look very much alike. As viola lands on an unknown island after the storm she decides to be a _______. This is to get close to Olivia as she is very alike to Viola, losing her father and brother. Act 1 Scene 5 is when Viola and Olivia meet for the first time. Olivia at irst is frustrated by Cesario (viola) coming but towards the end of their talk she wants Cesario to come back. In this scene Viola shows her true feelings and really lets herself go because she wants to get close to Olivia. At the start of the scene Cesario comes off not like a normal messenger. This is shown by Malvolio saying “he’ll stand at your door like a sheriff’s post, and be the supporter to a bench, but he’ll speak with you. ” This shows Viola as determined as she will not go until she talks to Olivia. She also comes of not as a messenger but as a comedian to Olivia. are you a comedian? ” Olivia thinks Viola is a comedian because she is not acting like a normal messenger by asking for the lady of the house and not leaving till she talks to her. “Tell me your mind-I am the messenger” This shows Viola not as a normal messenger as she is asking questions about Olivia. Viola also comes off rude, this is shown when she says “No, good swabber” a swabber is the ships petty officer who is in charge of looking after the decks. Rudeness is shown here because Viola doesn’t know Olivia or Maria yet and she is calling Maria a swabber.
Continued; “I am to hull here a little longer. Some mollification for your giant, sweet lady. ” This is exactly the same as what she has just said, as she is being rude about Maria but to Olivia. However, when Viola gets into more detail about love, she is seen as more emotional. Viola says “Make me a willow cabin at your gate, and call upon my soul within the house; Write loyal cantons of contemned love and sing them loud even in the dead of night; Halloo your name to the reverberate hills and make the babbling gossip of the air cry out ‘Olivia! O, you should not rest between the elements of air and earth, but you should pity me! ” Throughout a lot of this speech Shakespeare uses iambic pentameter. The syllables she stresses are the ones about her. This shows that Viola is not interested about Orsino or wooing Olivia for Orsino but she is interested in getting to know Olivia. She is seen as more emotional because she lets herself go by saying “Halloo you name to the reverberant hills and make the babbling gossip of the air cry out “Olivia! ” This shows emotion as “Halloo” means to shout allowed.
As well as that, Shakespeare puts in personification and metaphors. “Make the babbling gossip of the air” Emotion is shown via personification and metaphors because she feels like she is commanding the air to do as she says. To Malvolio, Cesario is seen as an annoying man who won’t leave his mistress alone. “H’as been told so; and he says, he’ll stand at your door like a sheriff’s post,” Malvolio gets annoyed because he has come up with many excuses to keep Viola away but she will not budge until she sees Olivia. To Maria, Cesario is definitely seen as a rude and unkind man. No, good swabber, I am to hull here a little longer. Some mollification for your giant, sweet lady. ” Maria finds this rude as she is called unjustified names. The audience feels empathy for Maria as she has done nothing wrong. Overall Shakespeare, in act 1 scene 5, Shakespeare presents the Character Viola as a rude but not incompetent from writing the willow cabin speech. However once through the first wall (the rudeness) there is a really caring, honest and truthful person with a lot of emotions shown throughout scene 5.