In my chamber-window lies a book: bring it hither to me in the orchard. Boy. I am here already, sir. BENEDICK. I know that; but I would have thee hence, and. Much Ado About Nothing book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Much Ado is a romantic comedy that revolves around obstac. Free site book and epub digitized and proofread by Project Gutenberg.
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Much Ado About Nothing is a comedy by William Shakespeare thought to have been written in . unusual in style and syncopation. One version of the Claudio– Hero plot is told by Edmund Spenser in The Faerie Queen (Book II, Canto iv). nvilnephtalyca.ga: Much Ado About Nothing (Folger Shakespeare Library) ( ): William Shakespeare, Barbara A. Mowat, Paul Werstine: Books. Scenes (17 total). Complete Text · Act I · Scene 1. Before LEONATO'S house. Scene 2. A room in LEONATO's house. Scene 3. The same.
I am probably the last person in the whole history of the world to get it, but, just in case there's someone else left, it occurred to me yesterday that the title of this play had to be a rude pun. Five minutes on Google was enough to confirm my suspicions. From this page: In Shakespeare's time "nothing" was a euphemism for a woman's naughty bits. This gave the title three different yet equally appropriate meanings, as the main conflict over the play revolves around the false implication of Hero I am probably the last person in the whole history of the world to get it, but, just in case there's someone else left, it occurred to me yesterday that the title of this play had to be a rude pun.
This gave the title three different yet equally appropriate meanings, as the main conflict over the play revolves around the false implication of Hero losing her virginity to another man while engaged to Claudio. The Terry Pratchett quote at the top is also rather fine: Mind you, the Elizabethans had so many words for the female genitals that it is quite hard to speak a sentence of modern English without inadvertently mentioning at least three of them.
With the help of a good online Shakespearian dictionary, I have been carrying out some experiments, and I'm afraid he's right. I have decided to remain mute for the rest of the morning to be on the safe side. View all 12 comments. Much ado about nothing: The play was included in the First Folio, published in By means of "noting" which, in Shakespeare's day, sounded similar to "nothing" as in the play's title, and which means gossip, rumour, and overhearing , Benedick and Beatrice are tricked into confessing their love for each other, and Claudio is tricked into rejecting Hero at the altar on the erroneous belief that she has been unfaithful.
At the end, Benedick and Beatrice join forces to set things right, and the others join in a dance celebrating the marriages of the two couples. The action is set in Sicily, where Don Pedro, Prince of Aragon, has recently defeated his half-brother, the bastard Don John, in a military engagement.
Apparently reconciled, they return to the capital, Messina, as guests of the Governor, Leonato. The play's central plot shows how Don John maliciously deceives Claudio into believing that Hero has taken a lover on the eve of her marriage, causing Claudio to repudiate her publicly, at the altar.
It was Mexican themed, full of dancing, gunshots, high racing emotions and many moments of farcical humour. All in all, it was a great production of an imperfect play. The Tempest is one of the best things ever written in the English language. Similarly, Richard II is pure poetry, beautiful and powerful, but it is so unimpressive on the stage.
Some are perfect stage pieces, but boring on the page. Some manage to succeed in both realms, but not many. Much Ado About Nothing is a play that is meant to be performed.
Like Twelfth Night and all the comedies the real genius of the writing does not come through until it is seen in action. Everybody else involved are mere plot devices crafted by Shakespeare.
They are simply there to play off the two central characters against each other, and play each other they most certainly do. A relationship built on mutual hate sounds like an odd concept, but an apt one. Both Beatrix and Benedict have sworn never to marry, so when they finally stumble across their counterparts they are annoyed and in absolute denial about their own feelings. It leads to many brilliant comedy moments, moments the version I watched was very quick to capitalise on.
It was mischievous, witty and a very good piece of fun. The entire cast nailed it. Again, this is a play that really needs to be seen. If you find yourself in London this summer, I certainly recommend going to watch it. View all 11 comments. Sep 05, James rated it liked it Shelves: It was an opportunity to see his brilliance in writing something different and basically Well not really nothing, but you get the drift. It was a decent play. And I can say that because I've read over 40 of his plays.
It's not like I just picked a few up and said "Eh, it's decent," not having read enough to know. It's Shakespeare of course. And scholars can argue for hours about what it all meant, who really wrote it, what was being hidden in the lines and characters.
But for me Given I tend to like very character-driven stories or complex plots, this one doesn't rank very high on my scale for what I've read. Yes, the plot is fairly low-key It's very strong in terms of language, innuendo, imagery and balance. But as far as a leisurely and enjoyable read, I didn't take a whole lot from it. Of course, all English majors should read it.
But if you want some light re-exposure to Shakespeare, I wouldn't recommend this one as a starting place. About Me For those new to me or my reviews I read A LOT.
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Many thanks to their original creators. Apr 10, Henry Avila rated it it was amazing. His army needs it, Rest and Relaxation, the governor of that city is his good, longtime friend, Leonato. The time, is unstated, but Aragon, ruled that island, in the 15th century. Count Claudio, who gained glory in battle, in the Prince's army, and a favorite of his royal boss, meets "Hero", lovely daughter of Leonato.
No need to say they fall madly in love and are soon engaged. Claudio best friend is Benedick, another noble soldier, Hero has a cousin named Beatrice, the other two, don't love each other, quite the reverse.
The sharp tongued, with wit, Beatrice, is known for causing her suitors, to quietly go into the night, meekly, dejectedly, and afraid. The battle of words between these people Beatrice and Benedick , are electrifying, put downs, name calling, venomous insults, anything goes, they fly like trailers in a tornado. Don John hates his half- brother, Don Pedro, is jealous of his power and position, will always try to embarrass him, if he can't usurp the Prince The Prince's brother, is a petty man, and arranges with Don Pedro, Claudio, and himself, to view the apparent, infidelity of Hero, the three secretly watching below her window , at night, with the recognized Borachio, in plain sight, but is the daughter of Leonato, there?
All is ruined, the distraught Claudio , breaks the engagement at the altar, with angry accusations, Hero faints dead away. Her father Leonato and his brother Antonio, are humiliated, shamed and later on very enraged, these ancient gentlemen want revenge, family honor demands it!
But what can they do? In another strange turn of events, with the help of the Prince and a masquerade ball, Beatrice and Benedick, unknowingly dance together , soon after , start to really like each other! And the villains, Borachio and Conrade, are shortly arrested by the night watchmen of the city , overhearing them talking about some interesting secrets, information, that is vital to many people.
Brought to their leaders, Dogberry, the chief and his deputy, Verges, both speak a kind of language, that only they can understand, their words mean exactly the opposite, of what is said, Dogberry says to his men, about the criminals, "Come, take away the plaintiffs" and "Don't you suspect my office?
The clownish, kindhearted, old men, have seen better days, will these friends, be able to find out the crimes of Don John, before it is too late? Shakespeare, the greatest writer who ever lived, has another superb play, one of many, in his illustrious and unequaled career View all 21 comments. In my innocence, I presumed downloading Shakespeare would be a straight-forward business. As it turned out, my bookshop had multiple editions of the plays which was very impressive but left me with a dilemma: Perhaps a 'Complete Works' was the way to go, I thought.
I took a large volume down from the shelf and immediately looked around for a chair. Just holding it required sitting down, it was so heavy. I couldn't imagine reading it in bed - and the bath was definitely out! The pages were very flimsy too, and the font was tiny. Poor quality print was a problem with single editions as well. I ruled out others because the introduction took up two-thirds of the book. I was getting more and more frustrated. Then I realised I was making a bigger fuss about choosing a book than I'd ever done before so I grabbed the least objectionable edition of 'Much Ado about Nothing' and headed for the cash desk.
Fortunately, it doesn't take long for the misunderstandings to be resolved and order to be restored. In that sense the play is literally much ado about nothing. Beatrice has the wittiest lines and the cleverest insights - especially about marriage and what it means for women. Only Beatrice retains our full respect. For me, it is all about her, as if Shakespeare used the plot simply as a frame for her speeches. I couldn't get enough of them. I began to see parallels between Beatrice and Isabel Archer.
Somewhat trivial parallels, you might say, but there are more.
Much Ado About Nothing
When we first meet Beatrice and Isabel, their unconventional manners set them apart immediately. They both have a reputation for being originals. Beatrice is at her best when engaged in a battle of wits. Isabel too enjoys sparring with anyone who will engage her. We soon discover that they each have a strong sense of who they are and a radical dislike of anyone controlling their destiny.
But they are not radical just for the sake of it. Isabel is not a reformer like her friend Henrietta Stackpoole, and Beatrice is not as intractable as Kate from 'The Taming of the Shrew'.
The two women give priority instead to their own intellectual development and they disdain the pursuit of romantic love. Isabel refuses a marriage proposal from Lord Warburtin, the richest man in her circle. Beatrice refuses Don Pedro, the most powerful man in Messina. When Beatrice says, 'I had rather hear my dog bark at a crow than a man swear he loves me', we can't but be reminded of Isabel who runs the other way whenever there is talk of love. So many parallels.
When I started reading this play, I had no idea I'd find such comparisons. Unfortunately, the final comparison I found is the one that sets the two heroines completely apart: The Oxford World's Classics edition I reluctantly bought turned out to be perfect.
Lovely cover, quality paper, a clear font and well-spaced lines. However, there were copious notes and a very long introduction. I mostly ignored the notes but read the introduction with pleasure once I'd finished the play. It included a history of the play's production, and engravings and photos of the various actresses who interpreted Beatrice down through the centuries.
I can truly say that I'm finally reading Shakespeare for pleasure. Thank you, Henry. View all 27 comments. Jan 12, Ted rated it really liked it Recommends it for: Anyone who thinks Shakespeare's comedies aren't funny.
Aside from the Elizabethan words that required me to check the footnotes, it had a very modern feel to it.
The play was probably written in Benedick and Beatrice. Benedick, a young lord of Padua, is introduced as a man who disdains women, and disdains the very idea of marriage. I wonder that you will still be talking, Signior Benedick. Nobody marks you. What, my dear lady Disdain! Are you yet living?
Is it possible Disdain should die while she hath such meet food to feed it as Signior Benedick? Courtesy itself must convert to disdain if you come in her presence. Then is courtesy a turncoat. But it is certain I am loved of all ladies, only you excepted. And I would I could find in my heart that I had not a hard heart, for truly I love none.
A dear happiness to women. They would else have been troubled with a pernicious suitor. I thank God and my cold blood that I am of your humor for that. I had rather hear my dog barking at a crow than a man swear he loves me. God keep your ladyship still in that mind! Well, you are a rare parrot-teacher. A bird of my tongue is better than a beast of yours. I would my horse had the speed of your tongue, and so good a continuer. I have done.
You bet. Shakespeare then adds considerable dialogue among other members of the cast, completely outside the traditional story, in which other male characters conspire to trick Benedick into thinking that Beatrice loves him; while separately, Hero and her attendants decide they will trick Beatrice into believing Benedick has fallen for her.
Even when Dogberry manages to say what he means, what he means to say is often exceeding strange. If they make you not then the better answer, you may say they are not the men you took them for. The most peaceable way for you, if you do take a thief, is to let him show himself what he is and steal out of your company.
Branagh also starred as Benedick.
Filming was done at a villa in Tuscany. Branagh and Thompson are superb in the lead roles, Reeves gives a solid performance as the bad guy, and Michael Keaton is way over the top as the buffoon Dogberry. The language is Shakespearean throughout, with unnoticeable cuts in the dialogue and only slight elision of Elizabethan archaisms.
Everything a modern audience could ask for. The music is a wonderful plus in the production, and I found myself laughing out loud inordinately often. Part I https: Part II https: Previous review: The Sound and the Fury Older review: As You Like It View all 8 comments. Nov 24, Jason rated it really liked it Shelves: And what a play it is! Because as it turns out, Claudio is merely a puss-puss who has offered no contribution whatsoever to the Space Race.
Beatrice and Benedick, on the other hand, are pretty great, and this being a Shakespearean comedy, they happen to be pretty funny, too. Especially Beatrice. A master of wordplay and sarcasm, her insults are delivered with a stinging precision and the deftness of a ninja. Halfway through the play, her comedic match is met when we are introduced to Dogberry, whose humor is a little more Yet it is nothing short of hilarious.
This play probably has some deeper themes trying to elbow their way out—Beatrice is presumably an early model of feminism in literature and I am sure that angle could be explored more deeply—but this worked well enough for me as a breezy romantic comedy, and I look forward to seeing what Whedon does with it.
Wow, did I just call Shakespeare breezy? I am such a puss-puss! It will be a Shakespeare movie weekend! In between Red Sox games. View all 84 comments. Jun 24, Agnieszka rated it it was amazing Shelves: Not much a review as some disjointed impressions from one of my favourite Shakespeare's comedies. Much ado about nothing is a display of wit and humour, from squabbles and cutting retorts between Beatrice and Benedick to the unrepeatable, full of malapropisms and nonsenses, humor presented by the the chief of the citizen-police in Messina, Dogberry and his bumbling sidekicks.
In short: There are some intrigues here. Since they seem not to see love even if they look at its face they apparently need a little help here. Here's the sample of Dogberry's flowery style: Marry, sir, they have committed false report; moreover, they have spoken untruths; secondarily, they are slanders; sixth and lastly, they have belied a lady; thirdly, they have verified unjust things; and, to conclude, they are lying knaves. Also, Dogberry is a man who in his own words would not hang a dog So, now you know with whom you have an honour.
This is a comedy though there was only one step from falling into tragedy. If only diabolic plan of prince's brother would have scored then Hero maliciously accused and spurned by her soon-to-be-husband Claudio, could easily be another from wide range of Shakespearean hapless heroines.
My attention is focused on other pair, Lady Disdain and Signiore Mountanto like they call themselves. Or just Beatrice and Benedick.
They are older and more sophisticated than Hero and Claudio, more watchful and guarded thus less prone to admit they are head over heels in love. They seem to have a history between them, definitely have a feeling for themselves but constantly are deceiving themselves in believing not such a thing is even possible.
I liked the chemistry between them, I liked the banter, the bickering. Even their love vows have un undertone of their previous verbal skirmishes. A miracle! Come, I will have thee; but, by this light, I take thee for pity.
I would not deny you; but, by this good day, I yield upon great persuasion; and partly to save your life, for I was told you were in a consumption. Beatrice is such a wonderful character. She herself deserves an individual review. She's smart and feisty, independent and despite or apart her sharp wit she has a loving heart.
I loved her unbending loyalty toward Hero, especially when the latter was really in deep water. I applauded her passionate O God, that I were a man! I would eat his heart in the marketplace directed towards treacherous evildoer. Did I mention she's beautiful? Apparently not but Benedick did when he confessed that she exceeds her Hero as much in beauty as the first of May doth the last of December. And special props to Dogberry for saving the day, despite apparent lack of skills and being, well ass, what officially what stated though not written down on his own demand.
O that he were here to write me down an ass! But, masters, remember that I am an ass; though it be not written down, yet forget not that I am an ass. And since this is a comedy thus all's well that ends well , though it's just another story, and the final scene just vibrates with celebration of love and affirmation of life.
So, sigh no more my ladies. Men were deceivers ever View 2 comments. Oct 11, Alex rated it it was amazing Shelves: The most important thing to know about this play is that "nothing" used to be slang for vaginas. No, I know, you're like "This sounds like one of those things that people say because it's funny but then you look it up and it's totally not true," right? But it is true. Rather A Pickle About Pussies is what we're talking about here.
The plot of this play, which is called A Bunch of Bother About Beavers, or Very Vexed About Vajayjays, is, oh god, who cares, everyone is confused and then they get The most important thing to know about this play is that "nothing" used to be slang for vaginas.
The plot of this play, which is called A Bunch of Bother About Beavers, or Very Vexed About Vajayjays, is, oh god, who cares, everyone is confused and then they get married. There's probably cross-dressing involved, when isn't there. There isn't. Although you could make a pretty convincing case for Hamlet. Because it's so great, wow, he used every single line? No, it is not so great, it's boring.
And in the second half he starts piling on guest stars, right, because he knows it's boring and he's desperate. But here's the deep secret of Hamlet: Or whoever, someone you want to make out with. They're like oh man, you're so classy, this sounds great, and then they come over and then it's so fucking boring that they literally have no choice but to make out with you.
This seriously worked for me twice, which might not sound like all that much but listen: Anyway, his version of Heaps of Hassle About Hoohas is bright and fun and terrific.
Joss Whedon's version of Scads of Stress about Snatches, you really want it to be good, right?
Frequently bought together
He's great, and the story on this is he basically threw a house party with all his friends where instead of Cards Against Humanity they played "Film Tons Of Trouble About Twats," and that sounds absolutely definitely like the best house party ever.
But someone made the bizarre decision to make Benedick an irredeemable douchebag, and the movie can't really recover. I'm not like the world's biggest fan of the man's comedies - I like tragedies better, sue me, so do you and if you say different you're lying - but one of his best is certainly this one, Quite A Commotion About Cooters. View all 4 comments. The clever retort, the unimpressed eye roll, the sarcastic aside: I need someone to throw down the gauntlet and challenge me to emerge from my self-absorbed, overly-staid default setting.
I need a Beatrice. Beatrice, Beatrice, Beatrice. It does and it has: I have a crush on Beatrice. She has layers and a past deftly intimated. Plot-mover she may be; Hero is still a timid little thing who offers us very little personality or justification for compassion. In a way this is a smart move by Shakespeare, as it keeps the darker aspects of the play in check: He plays the hit-or-miss role of the clown, but he rises above the cringing due to a goofy habit that's been inspirational for modern writers.
Both David Foster Wallace and Jonathan Safran Foer have made a practice of substituting incorrect but generally more difficult words in the dialogue of ill-spoken characters for comedic effect, which is exactly what Shakespeare does with Dogberry. But where was I? View all 37 comments.
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Jan 29, Lyn rated it liked it. He that is more than a youth is not for me, and he that is less than a man, I am not for him. View all 16 comments. Apr 30, AleJandra rated it really liked it Shelves: Y wow es otro mundo, absurdamente genial o genialmente absurdo.
Jul 04, Erin rated it really liked it Recommended to Erin by: There are several lyrics ripped straight from the text, not to mention similar themes. And it makes me oh so happy. There are spoilers here, but this is Shakespeare. No way am I putting up spoiler tags. According to the note in my copy, in Shakespeare's day the word "nothing" was pronounced "noting"-- so, "Much Ado About Noting", noting being synonymous with eavesdropping.
That pretty much sums up this play There are two possibly three main plots, including a messed up marriage between Hero and Claudio, which is nearly thwarted by Don John, the evilish villain who ruins other people's lives to distract himself from his own misery.
Also featured are the comically inarticulate policemen-types, Dogberry and Verges. The real center of the story, at least in the public's eye, was always the love-hate relationship between Beatrice and Benedick.
Their journey is one that's seemingly copied in crappy books adult or YA even today! They begin by antagonizing each other, but by extremely contrived and insufficient means somehow end the play in each other's arms.
The biggest difference is that Shakespeare is awesome and the present-day authors are just struggling. It helps that the silly game of eavesdropping isn't the true reason for Benedick and Beatrice to finally admit their feelings; it's hinted they had a romantic past and are probably still holding feelings for each other.
It's also still funny, despite being written hundreds of years ago. I find that so surprising-- although I'm not sure why, this isn't the first Shakespeare I've read. What especially tickled my funny bone was Dogberry's continual struggle with the English language. For example, mixing up "odorous" for "odious", "exclamation" for "acclamation", and "comprehended" for "apprehended".
My favorite part was the very end, when Beatrice and Benedick were in the process of admitting they loved each other. Beatrice is talking, insulting Benedick a little as per usual, and he just goes: Absolutely awesome.
I read the script while also watching the filmed Globe performance and like.. The Claudio storyline is annoying, but Hero is such a better character than Desdemona who has a similar plot line - Beatrice and Benedick are funny and sweet, and like I love them both.
Much Ado About Nothing
This deserves a really fun its been years but Benedick and Beatrice are still That Couple actual enemies to lovers excellence This is probably my favourite Shakespeare play I have seen yet.
This deserves a really fun and good modern adaptation honestly Feb 17, Piyangie rated it really liked it Shelves: This is yet another interesting Shakespearean play in the comedy genre. This play has one saucy and sharp tongued woman in the character of Beatrice.
This is quite a surprise for me, for I never expected to see such a spirited female character in a Shakespearean play. These expertly edited texts are presented to the public as a resource for study, artistic adaptation, and enjoyment.
By making the classic texts of the New Folger Editions available in electronic form as Folger Digital Texts, we place a trusted resource in the hands of anyone who wants them. Readers who want to know more about Shakespeare and his plays can follow the paths these distinguished scholars have tread by visiting the Folger either in-person or online, where a range of physical and digital resources exists to supplement the material in these texts.
I commend to you these words, and hope that they inspire. What is the difference? Many ordinary readers assume that there is a single text for the plays: In some cases, the plays have come down to us in multiple published versions, represented by various Quartos Qq and by the great collection put together by his colleagues in , called the First Folio F. Editors choose which version to use as their base text, and then amend that text with words, lines or speech prefixes from the other versions that, in their judgment, make for a better or more accurate text.
See The Tempest , 1. All Shakespeare editors at the time took the speech away from her and gave it to her father, Prospero.
The reader of the Folger Shakespeare knows where the text has been altered because editorial interventions are signaled by square brackets for example, from Othello: At any point in the text, you can hover your cursor over a bracket for more information. After Don Pedro woos her in disguise for Claudio, the two young lovers plan to marry in a week. To fill in the time until the wedding, Don Pedro and the others set about tricking Benedick and Beatrice into falling in love with each other.
With Hero in hiding and falsely reported dead, Beatrice persuades Benedick to fight Claudio. With Claudio forgiven, both couples are ready to get married.All Shakespeare editors at the time took the speech away from her and gave it to her father, Prospero. In our last conflict four of his five wits went halting off, and now is the whole man governed with one: Behold how like a maid she blushes here! site Much Ado About Nothing is one of Shakespeare's greatest love stories and a comic tour de force.
Dogberryism " Curiosity killed the cat " Pleaching.
God help us! Prince John is this morning secretly stolen away; Hero was in this manner accused, in this very manner refused, and upon the grief of this suddenly died. Watchman Well, masters, we hear our charge: Who is his companion now?
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