Edited, Introduced and Annotated by Cedric Watts, Professor of English Literature, University of Sussex Its lyricism, comedy (both broad and subtle) and magical transformations have long made A Midsummer Night s Dream one of the most popular of Shakespeare's works. The supernatural and the mundane, the illusory and the substantial, are all shimmeringly blended. Love is treated as tragic, poignant, ... more on BookSpotBuy it from BookSpot
A Midsummer Night’s Dream is a comedy play by William Shakespeare. The play starts with the planning of the Duke’s wedding which marks the most important night in the events of the play – where everything is resolved and everyone is happy again. Shakespeare as usual likes to complicate things; he presents us with four lovers: Hermia, who loves Lysander and is loved back by both Lysander (who her father hates) and Demetrius (who her father wants her to marry but she does not love him), Helena, who loves Demetrius and is not loved by anyone .. yet, Lysander, who loves Hermia and is loved back by her as well, and Demetrius who loves Hermia yet is loved by Helena. Confusing enough? Wait till they escape to the forest and the fairies – namely Puck guided by Oberon, the King of the fairies – decide to interfere! Hermia, not wanting to obey her father and marry Demetrius, yet she cannot downright disobey him, decides to elope with Lysander and tells no one but her closest friend, Helena, who was stupid enough to tell Demetrius, thinking he would stop loving Hermia when he finds out the plan. Demetrius, instead, decides to run after Hermia and stop her from marrying Lysander by killing him, and Helena, of course, runs after Demetrius. And that is how the four Athenian lovers end up sleeping the night in the forest. The fairies who witnessed all the running around and fighting decided to interfere to “help,” and help is indeed what the humans received! Now, Lysander and Demetrius both Helena and no one loves Hermia; Hermia is devastated, and Helena thinks that they are both mocking her. But you know what the best part is? That Titania, the Queen of the fairies, now loves a man with a donkey head! That man was part of a bunch of amateur actors who decided to put up a play for the Duke on his wedding night. Puck noticing his name is Nick Bottom – meaning a jackass – decided to give him a donkey head, which Nick does not notice, but everyone else does and they run away in fear. Puck then, as ordered by Oberon, makes Titania fall in love with the donkey-headed Nick. One of the most hilarious plays ever written by Shakespeare. Everything of course is resolved at the end since it is a comedy but the journey here is what matters more. I loved reading it and I am sure you will too.